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Oxford's Bicentennial Trip
Amidst the rolling hills in northeast Mississippi lies the quaint college town and cultural hub of ...
Amidst the rolling hills in northeast Mississippi lies the quaint college town and cultural hub of Oxford.
A hotspot for foodies and lovers of music and literature, Oxford also possesses a rich historical heritage. Incorporated in 1837, the town served as the inspiration for Nobel Prize winner William Faulkner’s Yoknapatawpha County and since 1848 has housed the state’s oldest public university – a pivotal location during the Civil Rights era. With a breathtaking university campus and stately antebellum homes surrounding a charming town square, history buffs are inclined to explore.
What better time to take a stroll in Oxford and take in a history lesson or two than during the Bicentennial Concert Celebration June 24. Check out the itinerary below for inspiration.
1. Stroll Around the Historic Oxford Square
Since Oxford's incorporation in 1837, the Square remains the center of culture and the town's economic hub. Throughout the years, the Square has been home to a variety of boutiques, bookstores, art galleries and restaurants. A former film theater, the Lyric serves as a concert venue featuring some of today’s biggest acts and was once a livery stable for William Faulkner’s family prior to becoming an entertainment venue.
2. Venture to Rowan Oak and Faulkner’s Grave
Renowned author William Faulkner resided in Oxford for the majority of his life, drawing inspiration from the town’s local people and places for his fictional world of Yoknapatawpha County. Rowan Oak, his antebellum mansion and the accompanying grounds, is open for tours year-round. Just across the Square, Faulkner is interned at St. Peter’s Cemetery. It’s best to visit after dusk with a bottle of whiskey, a common gift of remembrance often left at the grave site.
3. Take a History Lesson at the University of Mississippi
The state’s first public university opened its doors to eighty students in 1848 and has since become a major landmark of Oxford. With a walk around campus, visitors will encounter stately academic buildings with a range of architectural designs including the Greek Revival Lyceum, Victorian Romanesque Ventress Hall and the Georgian-inspired Croft Institute. Barnard Observatory is one of the oldest buildings on campus and the first regional studies center in the country. It houses the Gammill Gallery, an exhibit hall devoted to documentary photography of the American South.
4. Reflect on the Civil Rights Era
Behind the Lyceum is a monument of James Meredith, the university’s first African American student.
5. Get the Oxford Blues
Discover the region’s blues history with a visit to the world’s most extensive collection of blues recordings and related material at the university’s J.D. Williams Library. The Mississippi blues archive is comprised of three major collections and open to the public. The B.B. King Collection alone includes more than 7,000 recordings ranging from classic blues to big-band jazz, films, photographs and other promotional materials.
Mississippi Road Trip: Gulf Coast Getaway
Lined by sandy white beaches overlooking barrier islands and the Gulf of Mexico, the Mississippi ...
Lined by sandy white beaches overlooking barrier islands and the Gulf of Mexico, the Mississippi Gulf Coast offers both a peaceful retreat and plenty of ways to party down. We have the perfect Gulf Coast getaway planned for you.
Ease into a Coastal State of Mind
Arrive at the Island View Casino on the beach in Gulfport, check in and explore the coastal-contemporary resort’s amenities. After a trip to the spa to shake off your travels, play a few hands on the tables in the 83,000-square-foot casino and grab a refresher at one of 11 on-site restaurants and bars.
Adjust Your Perspective with Art
Back when the Mississippi Gulf Coast was a collection of rural fishing villages along the Gulf of Mexico, artist Walter Inglis Anderson settled in Ocean Springs and began painting the region’s natural history. Today, the Walter Anderson Museum of Art in the town’s historic district features his paintings, sculptures and the mural-lined Ocean Springs Community Center alongside pottery from his siblings and other works.
Tour the Historic Beauvoir Estate
Stroll among the grand live oaks at Beauvoir, the 51-acre last home and retreat of Jefferson Davis, where he penned his memoirs. The centerpiece Beauvoir mansion is restored to 1889, when Davis lived in the home. The grounds include a confederate cemetery and the Jefferson Davis Presidential Library and museum.
Dine on Local Delicacies
On your way back to your cozy accommodations, stop for dinner at Scarlet’s Steak and Seafood at the Scarlet Pearl overlooking Biloxi’s Back Bay in D’Iberville, named for the French explorer who first settled the area in 1699. Dine on fresh local oysters and jumbo Gulf shrimp or pair with Creekstone Farms Black Angus beef for a unique surf-and-turf experience.
Why Breakfast When You Can Brunch?
After a late rise and a stroll along the beach, head to Le Café Beignet in downtown Biloxi for brunch. Order a specialty coffee and sample the signature beignets—the region’s fried French doughnuts, generously coated in powdered sugar—then order grits with smoked Gouda and shrimp or a gourmet breakfast sandwich served on a French baguette.
Cut Through the White Caps
Find the Biloxi Schooner pier near Biloxi’s Point Cadet, the original home of the city’s seafood industry, sheltered by Deer Island on the eastern tip of the peninsula. Board the Glenn L. Swetman or the Mike Sekul schooner and sail the Mississippi Sound on an historic fishing and oystering boat.
Rock with The Band Perry & More
Join the revelers at Gulfport’s beachfront Centennial Plaza, originally developed for Mississippi’s 100-year birthday, for a party a century in the making—the Mississippi Bicentennial Celebration South featuring the Governor’s Concert on April 1.
Take in 200 years of history among the Spanish colonial buildings and moss-draped live oaks while musicians celebrate the state’s history in song with the “We Are Mississippi” orchestral salute. After a performance by Americana singer-songwriter Paul Thorn, stretch out to the grooves of Jaimoe’s Jasssz Band, featuring Allman Brothers Band founding percussionist Jaimoe Johnson and guest guitarist Vasti Jackson. Dance and sing along as The Band Perry, a trio of GRAMMY Award®-winning siblings with deep roots in the coastal and capital regions of the state, close out the show with their biggest hits.
Enter now for a chance to win a Gulf Coast Getaway during the Mississippi Bicentennial Celebration South.
5 Romantic Getaways in Mississippi
When you truly want to get away from it all, relax, unwind and reconnect, ...
Mississippi Gulf Coast’s Top 5 Golf Resorts
The Mississippi Gulf Coast is a golfer’s paradise. Ideal weather. Varied ...
Mississippi's 2017 GRAMMY Nominations
What do Diplo, Luther Dickinson & Tig Notaro have in common? If you follow music, you may ...
What do Diplo, Luther Dickinson & Tig Notaro have in common?
If you follow music, you may already know a vast number of GRAMMY Award® winners and nominees share a common home: Mississippi. In fact, the state has produced more GRAMMY winners and nominees than any other state, earning the title, “The Birthplace of America’s Music.”
Mississippians continue to have an extensive influence on popular music and culture with the 59th GRAMMY Awards, racking up another seven nominations and two Lifetime Achievement Awards. These nominations include pop music’s biggest artists, country music pioneers, blues torchbearers and an acclaimed comedian.
Keep this rundown of Mississippi’s 2017 GRAMMY nominees handy as you watch the GRAMMYs live on CBS, Sunday, Feb. 12 at 7 p.m. CT.
Album of the Year
Diplo for Beyonce, "Lemonade"
Diplo for Justin Bieber, "Purpose"
Song of the Year
Khalif Brown (Swae Lee of Rae Sremmurd) for Beyonce, "Formation"
Best Traditional Blues Album
Luther Dickinson for "Blues & Ballads (A Folksinger's Songbook: Volumes I & II)”
Vasti Jackson for "The Soul of Jimmie Rodgers"
Bobby Rush for "Porcupine Meat"
Best Comedy Album
Tig Notaro for "Boyish Girl Interrupted"
Lifetime Achievement Award
Be sure to add the GRAMMY Museum Mississippi in Cleveland, Miss., to your road-trip itinerary. The only GRAMMY Museum located outside of Los Angeles explores the past, present and future of music while casting a spotlight on the deep musical roots of Mississippi.
Discover more of Missisippi's music history and today's live music at http://www.visitmississippi.org/americana/
Mississippi Road Trip: Greenwood
Just 25 miles west of major artery Interstate 55, the city of Greenwood, Mississippi, offers an ...
Just 25 miles west of major artery Interstate 55, the city of Greenwood, Mississippi, offers an easily accessible, off-the-beaten-path escape. In the heart of the Mississippi Delta, the small city of Greenwood is home to a number of luxurious establishments, perfect for a relaxing weekend getaway. Here’s how to spend a weekend in Greenwood:
Check into The Alluvian Hotel
Step through the revolving doors into the sleek lobby and feel transported to a realm of chic ambiance reminiscent of major metropolitan cities. The Alluvian Hotel stays true to its Mississippi surroundings. The boutique hotel is named for the alluvial plain of the Mississippi Delta, a level land with extensive amounts of mineral-rich soil. The hotel also boasts an award-winning art collection by Mississippi artists. One of the best benefits of The Alluvian: the location. Downtown Greenwood offers dining and activity options all within walking distance, so there’s no need to crank your engine until departure time.
Dinner at Giardina’s
After you’ve checked into the Alluvian, check out its neighboring fine restaurant, Giardina’s. Founded in 1936 by Italian immigrant Joseph Giardina, the restaurant is one of the region’s oldest. Featuring steaks, seafood and Italian cuisine in an upscale setting, Giardina’s atmosphere is old-world elegant, but the dress is laid back “Delta casual.” Reservations are recommended.
Morning Yoga at Studio A
Start your day well by taking a class at The Alluvian’s in-house yoga studio. Experienced instructors will guide you through a series of postures designed to invigorate the body and calm the mind.
Cooking Class at Viking Cooking School
Located across the street from The Alluvian, the Viking Cooking School offers novice and experienced cooks a delicious experience. Choose from classes covering subjects such as ethnic cuisines, vegetarian, basic cooking and baking techniques and cocktail and dinner parties, all of which take place in a fully appointed Viking kitchen. Make sure to book a class well in advance. Classes are quite popular and sell out quickly.
Wine Tasting at Williams Landing Winery
Toast your new cooking skills at a wine tasting at Williams Landing Winery. A few blocks south of The Alluvian, The Winery at Williams Landing is a small batch artisanal winery, specializing in wines made from locally sourced fruits.
Dinner at Delta Bistropub
Cap off your epicurean day with dinner at Delta Bistropub. Only one block north of The Alluvian, Delta Bistropub features the cuisine of Robert Gillespie, who studied under James Beard-nominated chef and former Delta Bistropub co-owner Taylor Bowen Ricketts. Chef Gillespie’s modern Southern fare is presented in a contemporary interior tucked inside a beautifully restored historic building.
Driving Tour of “The Help” Filming Locations
Not ready to leave this charming Delta town just yet? On your way out, take the grand tour of Greenwood by driving around town to see the many locations used in Director Tate Taylor’s 2011 film adaptation of Mississippi author Kathryn Stockett’s novel The Help. Easily find Hilly Holbrook’s house, Skeeter Phelan’s farm and many others with this helpful Google Map.
Enter now for your chance to win a two-night stay at The Alluvian in Greenwood!
5 Stops in Jackson for Blues Marathon Runners
We are pleased to welcome visitors to Jackson for the annual Mississippi Blues Marathon on ...
We are pleased to welcome visitors to Jackson for the annual Mississippi Blues Marathon on Saturday, January 7th! The 2015 marathon welcomed more than 3,000 runners from all 50 states and seven countries. This year, the marathon celebrates its tenth anniversary!
Here are five attractions in the greater Jackson area that blues and fitness fans won't want to miss:
1. Mississippi Blues Trail
Throughout the state, you'll see historical markers that commemorate important people, places, and events in blues history. The front of the marker tells the story of the site's importance, and the back features more details and images. Visit the markers in Jackson and the Capital / River region, and download the Mississippi Blues Trail app to create your itinerary and get directions.
2. F. Jones Corner
Frank Jones Corner, known as F. Jones Corner, is a live music venue that serves up tasty deep south food and cold beer. Built as a filling station in 1923, the building is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The friendly staff and variety of music -- including folk, jazz, blues, rock, and hip-hop -- attract regulars and visitors alike. You can hear live music every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights until 4 a.m.
3. Ridgeland Multi-Use Trail
The Natchez Trace is known for its beauty, but its automobile traffic can be a challenge for runners. To accommodate them -- as well as bicyclists, roller bladers, etc. -- the City of Ridgeland built the Multi-Use Path that parallels the parkway from Highland Colony Parkway (near milepost 101) to Harbor Drive (near milepost 103). Find more details and a map here.
4. Restaurants with Specials for Runners
You're sure to have a number of memorable meals in Jackson, given the selection of high-quality restaurants old and new. Whether you're in the mood for classic homestyle cooking, upscale Southern cuisine, or global flavors, you'll find what you're looking for. A number of area restaurants are offering deals and special menus for runners, and our Food Lover's Guide to Jackson will point you to plenty of local favorites.
5. Live Music
Listen to live Mississippi blues music all day Saturday and into the night. There will be music at the Start/Finish line, located at the Art Garden at the Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St., at Pascagoula and Lamar streets). Listen to live music along the course, and celebrate the end of the race with a Blues Crawl. Each runner will receive a Blues Crawl wristband in the race packet, and non-runners can buy them at the Blues Expo and at the Start/Finish line. Take the Blues Trolley to ensure a fun and safe evening.
We hope that you enjoy your stay with us and come on back and see us soon!
Photo of F. Jones Corner by Tate Nations
Christmas Table Traditions
It’s no secret – in the South, we do things a little differently. The holidays are no ...
It’s no secret – in the South, we do things a little differently. The holidays are no exception. Below we’ve compiled a list of some Mississippi holiday foods we consider beloved traditions, while the rest of the world may think them unusual. We hope you’ll be inspired to think outside the box(ed potatoes), too!
Shrimp and grits
On Christmas Eve, many Gulf Coast Mississippians make shrimp and grits the main course. Traditionally, tender shrimp and spicy sausage are served over buttered grits, made from ground corn, topped with a savory, creamy sauce. Although not usually considered a “holiday” dish, this meal is quickly becoming a Southern Christmas tradition.
For quite a few Mississippi families under a Cajun influence, no Christmas Eve is complete without a big pot of gumbo. Made with chicken, sausage and/or seafood, gumbo warms up any holiday gathering.
This vintage recipe is making a reappearance around holiday tables across the South. Canned pear halves are filled with mayonnaise and freshly grated cheddar cheese. In some recipes, the completed pears are topped with a cherry.
Many Mississippi families dine on a spread of appetizers on Christmas Day, and pimiento cheese finger sandwiches are common fare. The simple spread is composed of grated cheddar cheese, mayo and jarred pimientos and typically spread onto white bread and cut into finger sandwiches or used as a dip for crackers. In Mississippi, pimiento cheese is considered a Southern classic.
A step above cornbread dressing on the fanciness scale, oyster dressing, or oyster casserole, is traditionally served only at Christmastime. Baked into a mixture of bread, cornbread, chopped veggies and stock, chopped oysters add a depth of flavor to the dish and an air of importance to holiday festivities. Try your hand at making oyster casserole with this family recipe.
For some Mississippi families, particularly those in the Delta, mince pie bridges the gap between dinner and dessert. Consisting of minced meat, suet, fruit and spices like cinnamon and nutmeg baked into a traditional pie crust, mince pie makes a delightful transition course with sweet and savory notes.
Lime sherbet punch
This holiday drink is made from only two ingredients – lime sherbet and ginger ale. The sherbet gives the sparkling soda a creamy, cold consistency, and the bright color is sure to liven up any party.
Christmas cookies are never in short supply in a Southern household. As a tasty addition to the traditional Christmas cookie assortment, some households make cookies using Orange Slice candies for a bit of nostalgic Southern flair. Many Southerners have fond childhood memories of eating orange slice candies around the holidays. This recipe for gumdrop cookies is sure to bring those memories to the surface.
Black eyed peas and greens
Nothing else will do on a Mississippi New Year’s Day. This tradition is said to bring good luck for the rest of the year. Black eyed peas are simply salted and simmered with bacon fat. Greens can be cooked a number of ways, but add a ham hock for authentic Mississippi flair.
3 Mississippi-Infused Holiday Cocktails
Mississippi is home to a growing number of distilleries and breweries crafting top-quality ...
Mississippi is home to a growing number of distilleries and breweries crafting top-quality libations. This holiday season, pour a taste of Mississippi in your glass with these cocktails and brews sure to liven up any holiday gathering.
Cathead Distillery’s Hot Toddy – Jackson, MS
Cathead became Mississippi’s first legal distillery in 2010. Still owners Austin Evans and Richard Patrick are known for their passion for fine spirits as well as blues music. The Cathead name is inspired by a term of endearment among blues musicians. As a sign of respect, blues musicians refer to one another as “cats.”
To support the heritage and rich culture of Mississippi, a percentage of Cathead’s sales assist Mississippi musicians and blues artists. So, boogie down to Farish Street, in the heart of downtown Jackson, and get a taste of Cathead by touring the facility on Thursdays and Fridays from 3 to 6 p.m. and Saturdays from 1 to 6 p.m. Until then, pour some holiday cheer in your glass and concoct the perfect Cathead Hot Toddy for a Christmas celebration.
1 bottle (750ml) Cathead Vodka or Cathead Pecan Vodka
1 gallon Martinelli's Apple Cider
2 cinnamon sticks
2 cider tea packs
2 red apples, halved
2 pears, halved
Peel of 1 orange
Peel of 2 lemons
Honey - sweeten to taste
Combine all ingredients and warm to your desired temp (but don't bring to a boil.)
Charboneau Distillery’s Rum Milk Punch – Natchez, MS
Charboneau, the first legal rum distillery in Mississippi, is home to the No. 1 ranked rum made in America. Before establishing the business in Natchez, Douglas and Regina Charboneau toured distilleries around the world in search of the perfect distillery style. Today, Doug and his son Jean-Luc focus on creating unique products reflecting their passion for travel and hand crafted food and liquor. King’s Tavern restaurant, which is connected to the distillery, is also owned by the Charboneau family with Regina serving as the head chef.
For an exciting weekend road trip, drive over to Natchez and take a mixology class at King’s Tavern and tour the distillery on Friday from 5 to 8 p.m. and Saturday from noon to 6 p.m. In the meantime, keep yourself warm with Charboneau’s decadent Rum Milk Punch recipe this winter while you string the lights.
Rum Milk Punch
1½ ounces Charboneau White Rum
2 ounces milk
⅛ ounce vanilla extract
½ ounce simple syrup
Garnish with a light dusting of nutmeg and chocolate.
Lazy Magnolia Brewery’s Freeze Warning – Kiln, MS
Lazy Magnolia, founded in September 2003, is the state’s oldest packaging brewery. What started as a couple’s hobby is now a thriving business with products sold in 17 states. Mark and Leslie Henderson continue to bottle a taste of the South and serve it with a side of, “Cheers, ya’ll!” Check out where the creative crafting happens by touring the facility on Thursday and Friday afternoons from 4 to 6 p.m. The current seasonal favorite is Freeze Warning. Pair the brew with a hot bowl of chili or stew for one “ale” of a winter night!
This beer was created to compliment cold winter nights and below freezing temperatures. Freeze Warning combines the flavors of fig, plum, raisin and dark malts with a warm finish.