Hundreds gather for Stella! shouting contest in French Quarter - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

Hundreds gather for Stella! shouting contest in French Quarter

Tennessee Williams Festival (FOX 8 Photo) Tennessee Williams Festival (FOX 8 Photo)
NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) -

It's one of the more unique events in New Orleans; hundreds turned out Sunday for the Stella! Tennessee Williams shouting contest. Local business owners say it helps set the stage for a very profitable next few months.

Re-creating the famous scene from A Streetcar Named Desire, people from across the country showed off their vocal chops in Jackson Square Sunday afternoon.

Festival board member Peggy Laborde says, “We have a rich legacy and history even today, a lot of national writers who live here and love it.”

On a weekend when thousands flocked to City Park for Hogs for the Cause and Freret Street for it's festival, the Tennessee Williams event, draws crowds to the French Quarter.

“The goal was to attract people from outside to come and stay three or four days and dine at the restaurants,” Laborde explained.

“I see people from Dallas, Atlanta, Nashville, San Diego, New York,” OMG owner Robbie Robinson said.

Robinson explains sales have been steady the past few months, but this weekend is the benchmark of big things to come.

“People are desperate to be here. They want to be here,” Robinson said.

Like California resident Corinne Christensen who says, “I'm basically, I want to have a good time.”

In recent weeks, some small business owners worried about the passage of an additional one cent state sales tax, to help make up a massive budget deficit.

The increase went into effect April 1st. While some like Robbie Robinson say they haven't noticed any change in sales, others admit, it’s still too early to tell.

“We'll have to see over the months, the weeks and maybe the years to see if it does anything,” Muse Inspired Fashion employee Christine Pichom said.

In the meantime, businesses here are banking on upcoming festivals, in the quarter and across the city, to make for a profitable spring. 

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