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Crowds are Large for French Quarter Festival

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The French Quarter Festival, a free four-day music festival centered in this city's historic center, is seeing what some long-time performers say are the largest crowds ever for a festival that's been around since the 1980s.

"This is the biggest I've seen it," jazz trumpeter Leroy Jones told the Times-Picayune after a midday set with one of his bands, New Orleans' Finest.

Throngs of people packed the French Quarter and listened to music on 22 stages around the old city center.

"This thing done blew up. It's catching up to Jazz Fest," said Julius McKee, 45, as he lugged his sousaphone through the streets to busk in front of Café du Monde.

The festival was to wrap up Sunday night after featuring about 800 musicians.




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