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The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, also known as Jazz Fest, is a 10-day cultural feast in which thousands of musicians, cooks and craftspeople welcome 400,000 visitors each year. Spread across 12 music stages and tents of various sizes, the Jazz Fest is one of the largest and most musically diverse of all the American festivals. Two food stages are also set up at the Festival.

The Louisiana Heritage Fair at the Fair Grounds Race Course showcases unforgettable music on multiple stages, delicious Louisiana cuisine in two large food areas, and crafts artisans from the region and around the world demonstrating and selling their work.

Before the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival came to be, similar "New Orleans Jazz Festivals" were held by different organizers in the 1960s. The first two New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festivals in 1970 & 1971 were held in Louis Armstrong Park, then known as Beauregard Square, in the area of the park known to be the historic Congo Square and the adjoining New Orleans Municipal Auditorium. Since 1972, the Jazz Fest has been held at the New Orleans Fair Grounds and Racetrack. The official poster series which features a performer or theme of the festival began in 1975 and has been very successful with many collectors. The first of which was designed by Sharon Dinkins and Thorn Grafton.

Arcade Fire, The Strokes, Bon Jovi, Jimmy Buffett, Kid Rock, Wilco and John Mellencamp are among the 2011 lineup to perform in 2011?s New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. The annual festival, which will be held April 29th to May 1st and May 5th to May 8th, will also feature performances by Robert Plant, Sonny Rollins, Lauryn Hill, Willie Nelson, John Legend & The Roots, Tom Jones, Jeff Beck, Jason Mraz, Lucinda Williams and Mumford & Sons.

Tickets are on sale today. A pass for the first three days is $120, while the second four days is $160. Single day tickets are $45, but children between two and 10 can get in for just $5. Other artists on the bill include Wyclef Jean, Tom Jones, The Avett Brothers, Cyndi Lauper, Lupe Fiasco, Arlo Guthrie, Jamey Johnson, Fantasia, Kenny G, Michael Franti & Spearhead, The Decemberists, Gregg Allman Blues Band, and Robert Cray.
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