Seafood festival leads weekend fun

One of the city’s signature events, the Biloxi Seafood Festival, ushers in its 32nd edition Saturday, and after three decades the chamber is still finding ways to add new attractions to the popular attraction.

For years, two days of lively music and fresh seafood dishes, along with the Sun Herald Gumbo Championship have attracted huge crowds – 25,000 or more — each year to the Town Green, but this year’s there something new.

The inaugural Cornhole Tournament. Yes, you read it right. Cornhole Tournament.

“Don’t laugh,” says Rachel Seymour, director of the Biloxi Chamber of Commerce, which sponsors the annual seafood festival. “If you Google it, you’ll find that there’s actually a Cornhole Association of America. It’s really a bean bag toss, and it’s become a very popular tailgating activity, and it’s very big on the college circuit right now.”

The tournament – with a field of two-person teams ($40 per team) – will take place Saturday morning and offer $150 in prizes.

Another new feature this year: Two of the myriad food booths, Naomi’s Catering and Southern Flavor Catering, are taking part in the “Every Shrimp Has a Tale” promotion where festgoers can scan a bar code to trace their shrimp’s journey from the Gulf to the Biloxi Seafood Festival.

Among the attractions are the Molly Ringwalds and the Rochelle Harper Band on Saturday, and Dikki Du & The Zydeco Crew and Tim Gross and the Blue Blazes on Sunday.

The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Tickets are $15, for all-access wristbands for both days; or adults, $5 before 4 p.m. on Saturday ($10 after 4 p.m.); children under 12 for free.

Says Seymour: “It’s going to be beautiful weather all weekend, and we’re going to have lots of fun. Bring everybody in your family and plan on having a good time.”

Festival lineup:
To see the lineup for the Biloxi Seafood Festival and to learn more about the Biloxi Chamber of Commerce, click here.

Weekend preview: To see the overall lineup of entertainment for this weekend – courtesy of listings from the Mississippi Gulf Coast Regional Convention & Visitors Bureau — click here.

News and notes

Baseball, budget and Biloxi schools: Chief Administrative Officer David Nichols updates the ongoing baseball discussions, including a visit from prospective team owner Ken Young, in this week’s City Desk webcast. The program was recorded this morning and also covers the just-approved municipal budget and the just-announced A ratings of the Biloxi Public Schools. To listen to the 10-minute report. click here.

Development: The Development Review Committee has two cases on the agenda for next week: Maps Trucks Leasing on Pass Road and a veterans housing at Back Bay Mission on Division Street. To see the agenda, click here.

Council meeting: The City Council, during a Tuesday afternoon meeting, will consider committing $1.33 million in donated east Biloxi right of way towards a $5.6 million state grant for a new roadway to support the Biloxi Boardwalk development. To read the details on that issue and to see the complete agenda and supporting documents – including the purchase of easements for beachfront infrastructure work — click here.

Farve-orite team: The Biloxi Indians host the Brett Favre-mentored Oak Grove Warriors this evening at 7 in a game that is expected to attract a large audience to the Biloxi campus.

Friday Flashback: The 1962 Cotton Bowl, where Texas upset the Ole Miss Rebels and runningback A.J. Holloway in a fierce defensive battle, is highlighted by the Unviersity of Mississippi this week. To read about the game, click here.