Nightly News   |  February 01, 2013

New Orleans ready for Super Bowl

New Orleans has always known how to throw a party, but it's never been more ready than on this Super Bowl weekend. NBC’s Janet Shamlian reports.

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>>> well, super bowl weekend is here with everybody gearing up for the parties, the food, beyonce at halftime, the ads, the unsanctioned wagering, the dueling brothers back story. and at some point, the actual game. nbc's janet shamlian reports tonight from new orleans .

>> reporter: new orleans has always known how to throw a party. but it's never been more ready than on this weekend.

>> good hospitality, good food. it's awesome.

>> reporter: primed for its close-up, and polished as bright as the sparkle on these championship rings.

>> in is a coming out for new orleans . i mean, we are sending the message that we can recover from anything.

>> reporter: this is the tenth super bowl in the big easy . but the first since katrina more than seven years ago when the super dome was the site of so much suffering. it stands today a monument to resilience.

>> it's been a great story of the recovery with a lot of help from the whole nation.

>> reporter: football great archie manning , often called the first citizen of the city.

>> we are proud. and people here that have kind of stuck this thing out --

>> reporter: there are still lingering scars. this weekend is a milestone. hotel rooms are full. and the economic boost could top $430 million. mardi gras will add to the total.

>> all this money is going to really help all the local people who have really suffered for, you know, what has it been, eight years?

>> reporter: as the kickoff nears, the brother coaches, john and jim harbaugh , fielded questions today before taking the field.

>> there's no better coach than the national football league than this guy sitting right here.

>> well, jack harbaugh , he's pretty darn good.

>> that's true.

>> reporter: no matter which team you're rooting for.

>> nothing finer than being a 49er.

>> go reasons!

>> reporter: there's little doubt, everyone is cheering for new orleans . could anything make this super bowl weekend better?

>> if the saints were in it.

>> if the saints were in it, that would be the only awesome thing.

>> reporter: well, they couldn't make that happen this year, but crowds are pouring into the city tonight. and while this game is still 48 hours away, no surprise here, brian. celebrations are already well under way.

>> with helicopters overhead, janet shamlian lucky enough to be in the big easy this weekend. thank you.