Patrons With Disabilities
Jazz Fest Access Program
Our Access Program coordinates our Services for People with Disabilities.
Out at the Fest, information regarding services for people with disabilities
is available at the Access Center – located in front of the Grandstand.
The festival tickets are available for purchase by single day or through a number of VIP packages. You will not need to purchase a specific ADA or Senior ticket for entrance into the festival. In order to access the festival, you will need to purchase a General Admission or VIP ticket and accommodations will be made on site. Click here for more information on tickets.
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Wheelchair-accessible Shuttle Service
The Jazz Fest Express bus service offers lift-equipped buses for wheelchair transport. The Shuttle operates between the Fair Grounds and the Sheraton on Canal Street, the Fair Grounds and the Steamboat Natchez Dock (Toulouse St. & the River) or the Fair Grounds and the new Wisner Blvd. lot, located at 5700 Wisner Blvd.
Roundtrip shuttle Downtown is $19 (parking rates apply) and Wisner Blvd $15 (includes parking). Other pickup points may be available, please call for more information.
If you are in need of a lift vehicle to transport you in a wheelchair or motorized scooter, please call us in advance at 504-569-1401 or 800-233-2628. Or when you arrive at the pickup/drop-off area please alert the attendant and a bus with a lift should arrive within 30 minutes.
When arriving or leaving by taxi or the RTA Paratransit service (504-827-7433), please use the Gentilly Blvd. Pedestrian entrance.
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The only public festival parking available is for patrons with disabilities with the state issued accessible car placards or other state issued accessible identification for $50 per day. Space is limited and is on a first-come-first-served basis.
There are VIP packages that include the options to purchase parking in advance. Click here for more information on the VIP Packages.
The entrance to the accessible parking area is on Gentilly Blvd through the Horseman’s gate. There will be signage on the neutral ground and the Fair Grounds fences. This is the closest possible parking to the Gentilly Pedestrian Entrance. In order to utilize this lot, you will need to have your state issued accessible license plate or placard or other state-issued identification in a clearly visible location. By state law the person who the pass is issued to, must be present in the vehicle. Contact your local Office of Motor Vehicles to learn how to obtain this identification.
If at all possible, please consider alternate transportation since we cannot guarantee there will always be parking available on site. Shuttle and RTA information is listed above.
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ENTERING THE FESTIVAL
All entry gates are accessible.
If you park in the accessible parking area or take a taxi or RTA bus you will enter the festival through the Gentilly Pedestrian Gate.
The Access Center is located inside this gate on the concrete in front of the Grandstand. The Access Center will have flags with wheelchair symbols on the top of the booth for easy visibility
As you arrive at the entry gates please look for the signs with the wheelchair symbols on them directing you to the designated accessible ticket booth and security check lanes to make your entrance easier.
Volunteers will be in front of the ticket booths to assist you with your purchase if necessary.
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THE ACCESS CENTER
Our Access Center is located right in front of the Grandstand at the Gentilly Pedestrian entrance. The Center is always staffed by Festival employees and volunteers who can provide you with a complete list of the services we offer and answer any questions you may have.
Stop by the Access Center for:
- Large Print and Braille copies of the Information Guide (copies will also be available at all Info Booths).
- Recorded program information.
- Assistive Listening Devices available for check out with a valid ID required as deposit
- Daily schedule of ASL Interpreted Performances
- Maps showing locations of accessible toilets and pass-keys/combinations
- An interpreter who is stationed there for emergencies
- Service animal registration
- A TTY telephone
Please take a minute and fill out a survey or comment card to let us know what services you really enjoyed and what we could improve upon.
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SERVICES FOR PEOPLE WITH MOBILITY LIMITATIONS
The Festival is outdoors and is situated within a horse racetrack. The grounds are accessible. There is, however, a lot of distance between the stages. The terrain varies from concrete to grass. We do have reinforced surfaces crossing the track and paved pathways on the infield to facilitate passage for people that use wheelchairs. Please look for the signage for the Accessible Crossings.
Wheelchairs and Medical Scooters are permitted. For safety reasons, requests to use other power-driven mobility devices will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with any inquiries. Keep in mind that because of the large crowds and children at the Festival, fast, large, or heavy mobility devices are not appropriate for use at the Festival site. Jazz Fest does not provide personal care, golf cart rides, or push service. Please bring an attendant if needed.
The Paralyzed Veterans of America operate a booth, located inside the Gentilly Pedestrian Gate, where conventional wheelchairs are loaned on a first come/serve basis. Please prepare to leave your identification for this service. There is no set fee for this service, but they do accept donations.
If you choose to bring your own wheelchair or medical scooter, please come prepared, as we do not have a repair or charging station.
All the food counters are at wheelchair height; vendors will be happy to assist in carrying your food and drink to a picnic area.
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Upon arrival to the Access Center, the Access staff will provide you with a map of the reserved seating locations and a wristband for entry, provided one of the criteria below are met.
You must have a wristband for entry into the reserved seating areas.
The accessible viewing areas are reserved for people with mobility impairments and one companion only.
The Jazz, Blues, Gospel and Economy Hall Tents also have accessible seating areas. Seats are marked with yellow signs of the wheelchair symbol in blue. Ushers are in each tent to assist you if necessary.
The Allison Miner Music Heritage stage has an accessible area on the third floor of the Grandstand. This can be accessed by the elevators on the left side of the Grandstand (when facing the building from the track).
There is a limited amount of raised reserved seating provided at the Acura and Gentilly stages, located next to the Big Chief viewing platforms. The reserved seating area for the Congo Square stage is located in front of the stage on the right. Entrance to this area is directly off the asphalt pathway which circles the interior of the track, adjacent to the Congo Crafts booths. All entrances to the accessible viewing areas can be accessed by the asphalt pathway and are clearly marked on the map you will receive from the Access Center.
These limited reserved seating areas are for:
- Individuals who use wheelchairs
- Individuals with disabilities who are ambulatory, but use mobile devices such as walkers or crutches
- Individuals who are ambulatory, but who are unable to stand during the performance
- These limited reserved seating areas are not for those with slight injuries
Space is limited and Festival staff cannot save or reserve seats or areas on the platform. The raised areas can often be crowded for the larger artists. In order to keep these platforms at a safe capacity, patrons may be asked to wait close by and staff will allow entry if, and when space has opened up in the elevated area.
Any person who attempts to use the accessible seating areas fraudulently or who attempts to help others do so will be removed from the seating area.
The the accessible platform is non-smoking and shaded.
An accessible port-o-let is available in close proximity to the viewing areas.
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FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING
Jazz Fest provides Assisted Listening Devices for the Acura and Gentilly stages. These are available for check out at the Access Center. Please be prepared to fill out a small form and leave your I.D., which will be returned to you upon ALD drop-off. A TTY (Text Telephone) is also available at the Access Center.
Please visit the Access Center for a wristband and a map of the festival grounds with the reserved Deaf/Hard of Hearing areas identified. The interpreters will be easily visible and accessible from these designated areas. These areas are reserved for people with hearing impairments and one companion. Please note that these areas have a limited capacity and are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
ASL Interpreted Performances – Please visit the Access Center for a daily schedule of interpreted performances.
If you have any specific requests, we respectfully ask that you submit them by Friday, April 1, 2016, at the latest. In order to provide the best service possible, our interpreters must have time to prepare. Requests submitted after the deadline or at the Festival will be honored to the best of our ability.
An interpreter is stationed at the Access Center for emergencies.
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SERVICES FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE BLIND OR HAVE LOW VISION
Braille and large-print programming information is available at all information booths and at the Access Center. Please stop by the Access Center to find out about the viewing areas.
A recorded copy of the program information is available at the Access Center.
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There are wheelchair-accessible portable toilets located conveniently around the festival grounds.
The Access Center provides a map with the locations of the accessible toilets clearly marked.
Access to these toilets can be obtained in two ways:
1. Sign in and receive the combination from the Access Center in front of the Grandstand.
2. Each accessible toilet features a sign designating the location of a nearby Festival staff member with the combination.
If you are eligible to receive the combination to the accessible restrooms we ask that you
PLEASE DO NOT SHARE THE COMBINATION OR ALLOW PEOPLE WITHOUT DISABILITIES TO USE THEM.
We work very hard to keep the accessible port-o-lets clean for the people that really need them. We appreciate your cooperation in this matter.
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Jazz Fest welcomes our patrons with service animals.
Upon arrival at the Fair Grounds, please come directly to the Access Center to register your service animal, which is just a short process to gather vital information about you and your animal companion.
Your animal will receive an easily visible credential confirming their status as a working animal providing a service for you. This will also keep your animal from being mistaken as a pet, which are not allowed on the festival grounds.
As stated above, service animals are working animals, not pets. Dogs whose sole function is to provide comfort or emotional support do not qualify as service animals under the ADA and will not be allowed onto the festival grounds.
Please bring water or food for your animal if needed, some days are very hot and there is very little shade. Also please come prepared to dispose of your dog’s waste appropriately. Should you and your animal be separated, please come directly to the Access Center for assistance.
If you have an animal that needs to be boarded while you attend the festival, the following link will give you several options.
*The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival is not affiliated with these services and claims no responsibility for any actions taken by these organizations.*
If you are looking for a lost animal please contact: The Humane Society of Louisiana
General Information: 1-888-648-6263
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The Grandstand is located inside the Gentilly Pedestrian Entrance. It’s a great place to escape the heat and enjoy some food, music, and photography. The building is fully air-conditioned.
The Food Heritage Stages and other exhibits are located on the first floor and are fully accessible with reserved seating for people in wheelchairs.
There is also reserved shaded seating for the Lagniappe Stage, located in the paddock.
Reserved seating can also be found on the third floor, the Allison Miner Music Heritage stage. This stage may be accessed by the elevators located in the Grandstand building. Look for the doors located to the rear of the Lagniappe Stage seating area.
The restrooms are fully accessible and staffed.
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To request further information about New Orleans Jazz & Heritage
Festival services for people with disabilities, call (504) 410-6104 or during the event call (504) 942-7717.