Needless to say, we're a little excited down here in Louisiana today! I got this video of Bourbon Street "Who Dat" celebration from one of my Twitter friends. Listening to it you can't help but catch some of the excitement.
Over the next two weeks I am sure that all over the U.S. those who wish to catch it will learn all about the athletic abilities and strengths of this football team. Our hats off to Tom Benson and the entire Saints team. But what about the behind the scenes contributions of some of the players and this event to the city of New Orleans and the gulf south?
I found some facts about the quarteback Drew Brees not touted too much in the media. Did you know that it was when Sean payton got lost on a tour and stumbled into the hurricaine ravaged parts of New Orleans that the city grabbed Drew's heart and make him decide to come? The Saints are lifting up New Orleans. For Drew Brees it's more than just the $ or fame. Drew Brees talks about Leadership. He did a 4 part video study for the Fellowship of Christian athletes of which he is a part. He attributes his success to his faith in God. Drew Brees and his wife have been active in supporting the children of New Orleans thru sales of "Finish Strong" tshirts as well as contributing to the George Washington Carver High School public school in the upper 9th ward. You can follow Drew on Twitter @drewbrees. The city of New Orleans love affair with their quarterback has brought him the honor of being named the 42nd King of Bacchus in the parade that rolls February 14th on valentines day.
The Saints trip to the Super Bowl has fueled tourism in the Louisiana area and will hopefully be followed by Mardi Gras which also generates money for the state. The NFL voted to play Super Bowl XLVII in 2013 in New Orleans, another boost for the state's economy • In 2008, domestic travelers directly spent more than $9.3 billion in Louisiana, up 7.0 percent from 2007. However, this spending had not yet reached the level set before Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005.• Domestic travel expenditures directly generated nearly 101.7 thousand jobs within Louisiana in 2008, an increase of 0.9 percent over 2007, but still 12.4 percent lower than 2004's level. The jobs generated by domestic travelers' spending composed 5.2 percent of Louisiana's total non-agricultural employment in 2008.• Domestic travel-generated employees in Louisiana earned nearly $1.9 billion in payroll income during 2008, up 4.1 percent from 2007 and down 3.8 percent over 2004.While the gulf coast, including New Orleans, is well on the way to recovery, there is still much to be done.
Meanwhile, for the next two weeks, we invite you to have a little fun (as Louisiana is known to be good at), practice that "Who Dat" chant, and dance a little cajun 2-step with us as the Saints take Florida in February!