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Masked Ball kicks off two weekends of Mardi Gras fun in Vicksburg



Cue the zydeco tunes and put on the gumbo. Vicksburg is making plans for the 2nd Annual Vicksburg Mardi Gras Ball at the Roof at 1311 on Feb. 15.

The ball is hosted by the Vicksburg Young Professionals group and sponsored by Fit Chef Catering and The Roof at 1311.

In years past, several organizations have orchestrated a masked Mardi Gras ball for the River City but nothing seemed to stick long term. In 2019, when there were no plans to bring back the River Revelers’ Masked Ball that took place during 2017 and 2018, Kimberly Smith sprung into action with the Young Professionals.

“I knew a lot of people that wanted to keep the masked ball going,” Smith said, “so we did. Mardi Gras is such a fun time in Vicksburg, and a masked ball is part of the reason why.”

Although the ball is hosted by the Vicksburg Young Professionals, a group whose members must be 21-45 years old, Smith said the ball is not limited to a certain age group.

“The ball is open to anyone who buys a ticket and not just for young professionals, so bring everyone you know,” Smith said.

Heavy hors d’oeuvres will be served by Fit Chef Catering, and a cash bar will be available (credit cards will be accepted). Attire for the ball is formal or cocktail.

Smith said there is one thing not to forget.

“Be sure to wear your mask,” she said.

The Roof at 1311 is located above Cottonwood Public House at 1311 Washington St. in downtown Vicksburg. The new event venue opened in the summer of 2019.

Vicksburg’s Masked Ball will feature a live performance from the band Sounds of T-Rell along with DJ Ronnie Luv.

“It’s going to be a really fun time, and you will definitely miss out if you don’t come,” Smith said.

Tickets are $30 and available for purchase on EventBrite. Smith said no tickets will be sold at the door and space is limited. For more information contact Kimberly Smith at 601-629-0098 or [email protected]

Additional Vicksburg Mardi Gras events will take place the following weekend.

The annual Vicksburg Mardi Gras Parade will roll down Washington Street Feb. 22 starting on the corner of Belmont and heading north ending at Jackson Street. The parade will begin at 4 p.m., or 3:45 p.m. for the Krewe of Barkus pet parade.

You can’t have Mardi Gras without gumbo. After the parade, stick around downtown for the 9th Annual Carnaval de Mardi Gras and Gumbo Cook-off. This event will be from 5 until 8 p.m. at the Southern Heritage Cultural Center Auditorium, 1302 Adams Street. The event is presented by the Vicksburg Foundation for Historic Preservation.

In addition to bragging rights and trophies, the first-place winner of the Gumbo Cook-off will be awarded a $200 cash prize. Admission is $10 for adults (includes gumbo), and $5 for children (includes unlimited children’s activities).

Admission may be paid at the door or purchased in advance at the Biedenharn Coca-Cola Museum at 1107 Washington St. Additional food items and beverages can be purchased during this event. All proceeds will benefit VFHP.

Laissez le bon temp rouler! Let the good times roll in Vicksburg.



Annual Reindeer Run scheduled for Dec. 5



Vicksburg’s second annual Reindeer Run is once again raising money for Paws Rescue, a no-kill animal shelter in the city.

The Reindeer Run 5K run or walk takes place in historic downtown Vicksburg Dec. 5, starting at 8 a.m.

Virginia Campbell and a couple of fur babies enjoyed the day at the first Reindeer run in 2019 with event mascots. (photo courtesy Debbie Haworth)

But even those not running will have a good time attending. The event includes reindeer games and face painting for the kids, a Christmas Pet parade for the fur babies, bloody maries and beer for the adults, plus delicious food from LD’s Kitchen for everyone and a DJ playing your favorite tunes.

Each runner and walker will receive a long sleeve technical T-shirt and swag bag.

To register online, click here. The registration fee is $30 until Dec. 1, and $35 after that.

Runner’s packet pickup is at LD’s Kitchen Friday, Dec. 4, from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m., and Saturday, Dec. 5 from 7:15 a.m. until 7:45 a.m.

If you’re interested in sponsoring this year’s event, please email Cynthia Freeny at [email protected]

Reindeer Run 2020 Sponsors:

LD’s Kitchen
601 Sports
City of Vicksburg


Trustmark National Bank
Flower Center
Curb Appeals
Levee Street Marketplace
Vicksburg Main Street
Woodland Animal Clinic
Southern Beverage
Mutual Credit Union

Friends of Paws
Wayne Pratt – Edward Jones
Hennessy, Thames and Leavitt
Magnolia Jewelers
Super Jr
Fit Chef
61 North Mini Storage
61 North Super Lube
61 North Storage #2
Robyn Lea State Farm
Koestler Pallet Sales
Vicksburg Amateaur Radio Club
Bo Eaton
Helping Hands Pharmacy
Danna and Jaa Allen
Paul Ingram

River Hills Bank
Cannon Motors

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Happening now: Fundraising benefit for Keeley Ramshur



Visitors look over auction items at the benefit. (photo by David Day)

A benefit for Keeley Ramshur is in full swing at the Elks Lodge Saturday.

Ramshur, daughter of Toni Buell Ramshur and Joey Ramshur, was diagnosed with a rare form of liver cancer and is undergoing treatment at St. Jude. All proceeds will go toward her medical care.

Lunch is served from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The benefit features live music, pulled pork lunch plates for $10 served until 1 p.m., silent and live auctions and more. You can also enter a raffle for a custom 10/22 Ruger Carbine.

The Elks Lodge is located at 1366 U.S. Highway 61 South.

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Dedication for Lynyrd Skynyrd Monument signage Saturday



The Lynyrd Skynyrd monument. (photo courtesy LSM)

The chartered plane transporting the iconic country rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd crashed 43 years ago in rural Mississippi after running out of fuel on its way to Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Six of the 26 people aboard the plane died including lead vocalist and founding member Ronnie Van Zant, guitarist and vocalist Steve Gaines, backing vocalist Cassie Gaines (Steve’s older sister), assistant road manager Dean Kilpatrick, pilot Walter McCreary and co-pilot William Gray.

For years, Frynds of Lynyrd Skynyrd have worked to erect a monument near the crash site and ensure fans can find it. Last year, a beautiful monument was unveiled at Mississippi Highway 568 and Easley Road in Pike County telling the story of the band and the crash. This year, the Frynds are celebrating Mississippi’s erecting signage on Interstate 55 south of Magnolia and near the monument itself so that fans can easily find the monument.

With new signage, fans will easily find the Lynyrd Skynyrd monument. (photo courtesy LSM)

A dedication of the Lynyrd Skynyrd Monument tourism signs is scheduled for Sunday, Nov. 15, at 2 p.m. at the monument on Highway 568 and Easley Road. Organizers expect several state dignitaries to speak at the event and will offer refreshments.

The road to getting the monument and signage completed hasn’t been easy. From fundraising to navigating the rules governing monuments and signs, the Frynds had to jump through numerous hoops to accomplish their goal.

Things began looking up when rescuer Dwain Easley and his family donated the land for the monument. With private land and no local or state regulations to deal with, the project was back on the fast track. The group also partnered with the Southwest Mississippi Regional Medical Center Foundation to provide credibility and leadership to accelerate the cause.

Dave Pace, Kevin Laird and the Brookhaven Monument crew broke records, broke company rules, and called in every favor available to have the 14-foot wide by 8-foot tall monument placed by Oct. 20, 2019.

The Mississippi Legislature stepped up this year to have the Department of Transportation erect tourism signs on Interstate 55 at Exit 8 and on Highway 568 at Easley Road to direct visitors to the Lynyrd Skynyrd Monument.

In the year after dedicating the monument, guests have come from 39 states, five Canadian provinces and 18 countries. The Lynyrd Skynyrd Monument has become one of the area’s largest tourist attractions.

For more information, visit the Lynyrd Skynyrd Monument Facebook page and website or send a text message to 601-249-7033.

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