Carnival is big business in the French Quarter

NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - This is the time of year that French Quarter businesses count on, and so far, business has been good on Bourbon Street.

Carnival revelers were taking full advantage of the gorgeous weather Friday, "drinking cold beers and hanging around Bourbon Street," said New Orleanian John Wust.

However, there is concern about the weather Saturday.

"So far so good, but I'm afraid the rain is going to mess it up," said New Orleanian Chris Clement. "I ride in Endymion tomorrow so I'm going to get wet."

But for now, both locals and tourists are letting the good times roll.

"I can't believe we are here for the 300th anniversary. What timing! It's wonderful and people are fantastic. The parades are great and the food ain't nothing to joke about," said tourist Lauren Montagne.

And that's exactly what Bourbon Street restaurants and gift shops want to hear, because Carnival is big business.

"We normally work doubles through Mardi Gras. There are no doubles, so it gives more people an opportunity to work during Mardi Gras because the money is going to be elevated as well, and it's fun because the people are excited to be here anyway so it's like you're coming to a fun place instead of, 'oh I've got to go to work,'" said Cornet server Christie Pitre.

A gift shop salesperson we spoke with agrees.

"A lot of people, it's packed, it's going crazy right now," said Tricou Gifts salesperso, Darryl Mancinares. "Big sellers are hats, wigs, ornaments, masks and boas and beads, too, especially."

So, while the good weather lasts, revelers are enjoying every minute of what New Orleanians do best.

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