NOLA Local Flavor





Greetings from New Orleans!


Photo of Tyree MitchellTyree Mitchell,
Local Arrangements Coordinator

A common saying in New Orleans is, “Laissez les bons temps rouler,” which means let the good times roll! New Orleans is a special place known for its unique culture, including amazing food, music, sites, and attractions. Although it turns out we will not have the opportunity to gather in New Orleans this year after all, we are keeping the local flavor alive in our virtual celebration, so check out these tips on how to bring New Orleans to you regardless of where you are located. We want everyone to be a part of the fun.

Let’s have a good time together virtually at the 2021 SIOP Annual Conference, and we hope you'll be able to make a trip to the Big Easy when the pandemic situation improves and travel becomes more commonplace.

How do I bring New Orleans to me during the virtual 2021 SIOP Annual Conference?

  • Download our Mardi Gras masks or accessories and wear them to a session, or post a selfie on social media using hashtag #SIOP21
    • You will need a color printer, cardstock (to get the best experience), scissors, tape, and a wooden skewer or dowel rod to assemble your props. Click on an image below to download.

  • Play or listen to some jazz music as you are waiting for a session to start
  • Wear purple, green, or gold to represent the colors associated with Mardi Gras
  • Wear some colorful beads during a session
  • Grab a relaxing beverage or add some New Orleans cuisine to your home cooking for the week
  • Mail order NOLA-made food products
  • Take a virtual tour - The National WWII Museum, Preservation Hall, Cafe Du Monde, and more are available free at

“Raise a  toast” in support of New Orleans’ hospitality workers

Like all cities that depend on tourism, New Orleans has been dealt a severe blow by the pandemic, losing an estimated $150 million in tax funds each week. Workers in the hospitality industry have been particularly hard hit, with about 25,000 of them losing their jobs.

The Louisiana Hospitality Foundation, dedicated to supporting Louisiana’s hospitality industry workforce, makes crisis grants to hospitality workers in need. Their website crashed because of the flood of requests that came in when the city first shut down and Jen Kelley, the foundation’s director says they have seen a 340% increase in grant requests since the pandemic began.

Louisiana Hospitality Foundation Crisis Grant CheckDonation "menu" for the Louisiana Hospitality Foundation

Had we been able to hold the SIOP Conference in New Orleans, we would have created an estimated six million dollars in economic boost, helping the city, and the hospitality workers who create wonderful visitor experiences, recover from the economic ravages of COVID.

Since we cannot share a share a meal together in New Orleans, we are inviting, and encouraging, the SIOP community to support the Louisiana Hospitality Foundation. 
Please elect a tax-deductible donation option to share your support for people who keep the good times rolling for Crescent City visitors. The Louisiana Hospitality Foundation is a 501(c)3 organization  .

New Orleans won't let Covid-19 disrupt the Mardi Gras spirit!

For a peek into what locals are doing for Mardi Gras this year, look up a Facebook page called Krewe of House Floats. People are decorating their homes and encouraging locals to take a driving tour instead of the traditional Mardi Gras parades!

SIOP sends our best to our members and all in the New Orleans community.