It is with commitment and pride that we, at McKenna Publishing Company, along with New Orleans & Company , sponsors of this directory of Black -owned businesses, welcome you to our beloved city—said to be the most Africanized city in the Western hemisphere.
We open our cultural arms to you as we share the presence of African retentions that make New Orleans the unique gem that it is.
From cuisine to music to dance to architecture and on and on, it is widely acknowledged that were it not for these cultural iterations anchored in Africanisms all, New Orleans as we know and love it would not exist.
Keen observers of lifestyles in this region proclaim that it is the remnants of African arts and crafts and ritual and ceremony, that make ours the city it is today. Simply put, much of what you love about New Orleans is rooted in Black people and our culture.
Therefore, it stands to reason that those whose vibe and sheer presence make New Orleans News Orleans, should have a seat at the table and access so that they, too, might benefit in all ways, especially economically, from the approximately $10 billion in tourist dollars that flood this city annually. That is why we urge you to direct your dollars to the many deserving Black-owned businesses who stand ready to serve you during your sojourn here.
The Mardi Gras Indians, gig musicians, the frontline service workers, the cooks and preparers of our delicious cuisine, must be included in the tourist largesse. From a living wage for our culture bearers to profitability for Black business owners, for those on whose backs this city rests, our Black residents must be respected. The days of cultural appropriation without renumeration for our creativity and originality ARE OVER
We must never forget—BLACK DOLLARS MATTER—and this is where you come in.
Because of the shutdown of businesses brought on by the pandemic, Black entrepreneurs and their smaller enterprises have been hit harder than the community at large.
Black businesses have closed at more than twice the rate of all others, with 41 percent of Black-owned businesses forced to shutter their doors for good compared to just 17 percent of White-owned businesses.
That is why we are reaching out to you through this directory, asking you, without trepidation, to intentionally seek out Black-owned businesses and service providers to ensure that they, too, bolster their bottom lines and benefit from the tourist economy that drives this city. We also encourage you to support the majority-owned businesses and institutions that advertise in this guide: their presence indicates that they appreciate and value your business.
Carry this directory with you as you traverse the streets of our city, and tell the businesses you patronize that we sent you.