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Downtown Suits Up For All-Star Weekend

The NBA All-Star weekend is just days away, and the city of New Orleans is dressing up for an estimated 50-thousand visitors.

Preps are underway on several buildings in the downtown corridor.

WGNO News Reporter Darian Trotter explains with a behind the scenes look.

Downtown New Orleans is getting a make-over.

From pole banners on major thoroughfares, to entrances of major hotels, everything’s coming up NBA for All-Star weekend.

“It’s going to be NBA everywhere,” Crystal Clear Imaging partner Arthur Boisfontaine said.

This is where it all begins.

Crews at Crystal Clear Imaging have been working for weeks to transform the city and welcome fans for this year’s NBA All-Star Weekend New Orleans.

It’s the same company that decked out Benson Tower for Super Bowl 47.

Then, the city was decorated with larger than life images of the NFL. This time around the company is using vinyl and fabric to create colorful images of NBA stars and motifs.

“It’s our city so we should dress it up when we have special events here that’s how we get our money and that’s how all our stores and merchants and everyone we survive so,” sports fan Wes Younger said.

The Smoothie King Center is being transformed; so too is Benson Tower.

“We’re looking really good on the Benson Tower,” Boisfontaine said.

The massive Adidas-sponsored image of Dwight Howard is nearly complete, but weather has snarled progress.

“Weather is a little bit of a challenge here but if it stops raining for two hours our guys are going to be right outside of the lobby there and they’ll be camping out and whenever it stops they go up,” Boisfontaine explained.

The more NBA images are seen around town, the more sports fans are getting excited.

“I think its great man,” sports fan Brennan Lewis said. “I think it’s great for the city. It’s bringing in a lot of what the city’s about. This is really about doing big things with the city so I love it and it’s making me feel great to be part of New Orleans.”

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu and Pelicans owner Tom Benson will officially kick off All-Star Weekend Wednesday at the Contemporary Arts Center.