#JuddFest2016 – part the seventh [5/27]

Beignets for days.
Beignets for days.

At last we have made it to the seventh and final [full] day of my trip. A travesty! I fell more in love with New Orleans than I already had been (although I’m certain I couldn’t live there, only visit). It’s a wonderful city and there really is so much more to it than what people associate with it — Mardi Gras and devastating hurricanes. The culture is phenomenal and the food is delicious! And I’m forever thankful to the friendly people who are certainly exhausted by the endless tourists but are always willing to point you in the right direction anyway.

It's getting dem in here.
It’s getting dem in here.

Day seven started with another trip to Café du Monde so Ashley and Craig could experience the powdered goodness. We had a pretty low-key afternoon; the girls went shopping at the outlets at the Riverwalk, which was mostly underwhelming, but I did get cheap shorts at GAP. Holla. I also met a bunch of important democrats. Okay, they’re cardboard. And random. But I had to take a picture anyway.

IMG_1873Surprisingly, we made it all the way to the last day without it raining (unlike last year, when it rained just about every day on me), but when it rains, it pours. We just waited it out in the mall, but my pretty Toms met an untimely early death by being soaked completely through. :'(

The evening was my favorite part of the whole trip. At first, we waffled a bit on whether or not we’d do this because it was fairly expensive, but with a coupon we managed to make it reasonable. All nine of us cleaned up well for the dinner jazz cruise on the Creole Queen steamwheeler. I’m so glad we did this!

They managed to find a table big enough for our group right by the four-piece band and the dance floor before opening up the seafood buffet. The food was delicious! I ate two plates of food, which is pretty remarkable if you know me and my birdlike tendencies. After dinner, the band played again and there was dancing, but we headed straight for the top deck to experience the cruise! The weather was absolutely perfect. It was warm, but comfortable, and even a little breezy on the river. It was a three hour cruise along the Mississippi, and so we were able to see the city in the daytime and sunset. I’m not sure the photos do it true justice. It was absolutely phenomenal. I am so, so, so glad I did this and I will do it again if/when I go back.

There was a wedding on the boat with us, and after the boat returned to the dock, we got to experience a New Orleans parade! The bridal party (plus a band!) paraded back to their hotel on Canal Street. At first we were so confused, but we followed anyway. It made me want to get married in New Orleans because it was so fun!

After that, we finished the night with a few drinks to put an end to a wonderful week in Louisiana. The next day was mostly sweating and travel back to Cincinnati, so there’s not much to share. But I had an absolutely wonderful time and I’m so thankful to Judd and April for inviting me to join them and their pre-wedding festivities, and I’m glad I got to spend so much time with such a fun group of people!

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