Cruisers party in downtown Biloxi Wednesday

Antique and classic cars and RVs began showing up on U.S. 90 late last week, and now it’s official: The 22nd annual Cruisin’ The Coast is underway, and come Wednesday morning cars will fill the streets in downtown Biloxi for a daylong block party, with live entertainment, food vendors and thousands of people.

“We’re looking forward to another great year,” said Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich, who owns a 1966 Chevy Malibu. “Wednesday is a big day for us downtown, but it’s a big week for the entire city and the entire Coast.”

Parts of most downtown streets – including Lameuse, Main, Howard, Jackson and Water – will be closed Wednesday for the downtown party, which takes place from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Cruisers will begin arriving as early as 6 a.m. to park along Lamuese and Main Streets and the surrounding areas, including on the old federal courthouse property, at Lameuse and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard.

“We are excited to be able to use that area this year for more parking for the registered Cruisin’ The Coast vehicles,” Gilich said, “and we’re thankful that Community Bank has made it happen.”

Parking will be first-come, and the official entrance for participating cruisers will be at Caillavet Street and U.S. 90.

The Block Party will feature Garry Wesley as the King of Rock and Roll performing on the City Hall stage at 10:30 a.m., special food and drink offers from downtown restaurants and shops, and trophies for the lowest vehicle, largest fuzzy dice, fattest rear tires, most-chopped top, most chrome, longest-distance driven, longest-painted flames (unbroken), The Peoples Bank Cup, Mayor & City Council Cup, and, from the Biloxi Police Chief, an award for “The car I’d most like to chase.”

Motorists on U.S. 90 will continue to see increasing and slow-moving traffic through the weekend, and beginning Wednesday, the city will place traffic cones in the center lanes of the highway as part of the city’s special event traffic plan.

“Cones will begin going out on Wednesday night around 11,” Biloxi Police Maj. Christopher De Back said. “This is just a visual marker.  We hope to keep all four lanes of U.S. 90 open the entire weekend.  We may have to put some traffic signals in flashing mode, but the biggest thing is to make sure emergency vehicles can get to where they need to.”

The Biloxi Downtown Block Party is sponsored by Biloxi Main Street, the City of Biloxi, Bioxi Bay Area Chamber of Commerce, Biloxi Chamber of Commerce and The People’s Bank.
See the block party flyer
See the Cruisin’ The Coast traffic plan
See the Cruisin’ The Coast website


Take precautions! West Nile case confirmed in Biloxi

The Mississippi Department of Health has announced that a human case of the West Nile Virus has been confirmed in Biloxi, and those venturing outside are encouraged to take precautions.

West Nile is a virus that can be spread to humans and animals by mosquitoes and causes flu-like symptoms.

“As with most things we encounter in life, the key to dealing with this threat is being educated about the issue and taking appropriate action,” Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich said. “Follow precautious and, by all means, let’s all do our part to help repel this threat.”

Some suggested precautions are:

– Limit outdoor activity during early morning hours, late evening, and after dark.

– If out during these hours, wear light colored long sleeve shirts and long pants.

– Use screens on open windows and doors.

– When outdoors, use insect repellant containing an EPA registered active ingredient.  Follow the directions on the package.

– Watch and listen to health department alerts and warnings about mosquito disease outbreaks.

The Harrison County Mosquito Control regularly sprays for adult mosquitoes, treats standing water, and traps and tests mosquitoes throughout Biloxi and Harrison County.
See more West Nile precautions


Public housing survey now underway

The City of Biloxi’s federal programs office is joining the state, five other cities and 50 public housing authorities in conducting a fair housing study to determine opinions about conditions in public housing.

Those taking part in the survey – you may remain anonymous, if you prefer – can take the 58-question survey either online or on a printed form. It is available in English, Spanish and Vietnamese.

The survey, known as an “Analysis of Impediments,” is required by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development as a condition for receiving federal housing and community development funds.

The survey includes soliciting the opinions of people throughout the state, as well as those involved in the housing industry, including renters and homeowners. The survey seeks opinions and experiences regarding fair housing.
See the online English version of the survey
See the online Spanish version of the survey
See printable versions in English, Spanish and Vietnamese


News & notes: Weekly report, council

The week that was: Last week, the Fire Department answered 157 calls for service, including 94 medical emergencies and two fires; the Police Department handled 2,142 calls for service; the Community Development Department issued 69 building permits with a construction valuation of more than $1.6 million; and the Engineering Department continued to progress on projects throughout the city.  To see the reports covering last week, click here. 

City council:  The Biloxi City Council will hold its first meeting of the month on Tuesday evening at 6 at Biloxi City Hall. To see the full agenda and supporting documents, click here