Join us in New Orleans, April 13-16, 2013, for a firsthand look at a city that uses the creative economy on a daily basis to build, re-build, and sustain its local economy and to enhance the lives of locals and visitors alike. Join your fellow Main Streeters in the Big Easy for: networking, education, inspriation and fun!

Session Details

Educational Opportunities

One of the most valued aspects of the Main Streets Conference is the opportunity for learning, whether from experts in specific topics or from practitioners in the field. For 2013, we’ve expanded the range of educational options and added some classifications to help you choose the sessions that will help you the most when you go back to work in your communities. And we've also classified sessions based on their "learning approach." See listing of the 2013 Educational Opportunities.

Mobile Workshops

More than a dozen mobile workshops offer you the opportunity to explore and learn from not only New Orleans Main Street districts but Louisiana and Mississippi Main Street communities as well. Tickets are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Click here to see details on the 2013 Educational Tours.

Manager and Board Member Roundtable Discussions

Facilitated Roundtable discussions developed specificall for Main Street Board Members and Main Street Program managers and Directors are scheduled for New Orleans. In order to plan appropriately, these events are ticketed, however, there is no cost to attend. Look for them on the online registration form.

  • For Board Members only: Gather with board members from across the county to identify and discuss pressing issues for local programs and board. Learn from each other how successes have been achieved.  Facilitated session with NTMSC staff and other Main Street leaders.
  • Leading the Next Phase of Main Street: Our Input, Our Role, Our Vision: Whether you are a new Main Street Manager or a seasoned director, you have a great and unique opportunity to join your peers to offer your vision for the next phase of the National Main Street movement. Come together in a roundtable format to discuss the needs of your local program and share your voice on what is also needed to build the position of Main Street Managers as key leaders in community revitalization.

Conference Special Events

Saturday, April 13

6:00–9:00 p.m.: Opening Reception

The entire French Quarter will serve as the setting for this year’s opening reception!  The annual French Quarter Festival is the official kickoff to festival season in New Orleans, featuring more than 800 local musicians, more than 65 local restaurants, and other free events. French Quarter Fest is the largest FREE music festival in the South and the favorite festival of the locals! See more details.

8:00-11:00 p.m.: St. Claude Second Saturday Night

Once on the fringe of downtown New Orleans, the historic St. Claude Avenue corridor, one of the original Main Street programs in New Orleans, is quickly becoming one of the city’s leading incubators for art, culture, and community revitalization. With the opening of new restaurants, art galleries, performance halls, and alternative cultural projects, this bohemian community truly comes alive at night. Join us for a visit to the St. Claude Night Market and a tour of the Second Saturday gallery openings and other cultural events along St. Claude Avenue. You’ll have the opportunity to branch off on your own if you choose to visit a local show at one of the corridor’s music venues or small theaters. Learn more about St. Claude Main Street, you can also like them on Facebook and follow them @StClaudeMainStr. Be sure to select this event on the conference registraiton form.

Sunday, April 14

4:00–6:00 p.m.: Opening Plenary

This summer, we announced the transition of the National Main Street Center to a non-profit subsidiary of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. This move was made to ensure that the growth of Main Street is best managed under the direction of a talented, high-performance subsidiary board and senior management focused on enriching Main Street and the services we provide you. Join us on Sunday afternoon to hear the new President and CEO share the new vision and exciting plans for Main Street going forward. And, of course, we’ll also be honoring the 2013 Great American Main Street Award Winners.

Monday, April 15

5:00–7:00 p.m.: Exhibitors’ Reception

Visit the Main Street Expo for complimentary hors d’oeuvres, drinks, and the first Passport Raffle drawing for exhibitor merchandise. The Exhibitors’ Reception is the perfect opportunity to examine the products, services, and information you need to build your revitalization efforts. So meet up with colleagues and friends here after Monday’s sessions before you head out to dinner. Free for all registrants.

Tuesday, April 16

4:30–6:00 p.m.: Closing Plenary

Before you head to the Main Street Bash, join your fellow Main Streeters for this final opportunity to learn, network, and gain inspiration to take home after a successful conference.

7:00–10:00 p.m.: Main Street Bash

As any local will tell you, there are certain things you have to experience in New Orleans. One is Mardi Gras. The 2013 Main Streets Conference will close things out in true New Orleans style at Mardi Gras World—the place where Mardi Gras magic is made. During the Main Street Bash, you’ll be able to walk among the towering figures that decorate Mardi Gras floats and get an insider’s appreciation of the history and traditions of Carnival. And of course, there will be plenty of food, drink, and dancing! BB: MS BASH on the registration form; Cost: $60