The French Market of New Orleans has undergone a few renovations over its 215 years of operations, with the most recent $5 million transformation completed just this spring. This newest version of the French Market includes a flea market, farmers market, shops and kitchens, as well as new architectural features and amenities to make the shopper’s experience even more enjoyable.

Located on what is now Decatur Street, the French Market of New Orleans began as buildings housing open-air food markets in the late 1700s and early 1800s. It underwent major renovations in the 1930s, under the supervision of the newly formed French Market Corporation and again in the 1970s, while Mayor Maurice “Moon” Landrieu was in office.

Another mayor – Dutch Morial – also worked hard at revitalizing the French Quarter a decade later by establishing the French Quarter Festival. The first event, in 1984, attracted between 50,000 and 75,000 people. In 2007, attendees topped the 400,000 mark. This year’s event, scheduled for April 11-13, marks the 25th anniversary of the Festival, and will continue the tradition of offering the best in local food and art, as well as over 150 free musical performances throughout the streets and parks of the Quarter.

Take a ride down to the French Quarter Festival and hear some great live music, take a stroll through the new French Market and enjoy the spring sunshine in downtown New Orleans.