Visitors Center to host Lighthouse Arts & Crafts Fair

More than 30 artists and craftsmen will be showing everything from jewelry to Marlin Miller’s wood sculptures during the Third Annual Lighthouse Arts and Crafts Fair, on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Biloxi Visitors Center.

Admission to the event is free and refreshments will be available for purchase.   Visitors are encouraged to bring their lawn chairs and watch the cruisers while enjoying the gulf breeze.

Visitors also will be given the opportunity to climb the Biloxi Lighthouse during one of the free tours offered every 30 minutes throughout the event. The Friends of Hiller Park will be at the festival with snack and children’s activities.

“The fair gives the center an opportunity to show off the Biloxi Lighthouse, the city’s most beloved landmark,” says Bill Raymond, the city’s historical administrator and manager of the Visitors Center. “At the same time we can showcase local artists who have helped support the visitors center gift shop.”


Cruisin’ the Coast takes over downtown Biloxi

“We had far more people in the areas around City Hall this year than in previous years,” Police Chief John Miller says of today’s Cruisin’ the Coast Downtown Biloxi Block Party, “and it seems like everyone had a great time.”

Mayor Andrew “FoFo” Gilich directed a slight change in the setup this year, with cars positioned on Lameuse and Main streets instead of around the MLK Boulevard, creating, as Gilich said, “more buzz and energy in the blocks around City Hall.” Cars were also positioned on the former Dees Chevrolet lot on Main Street.

“People are creatures of habit,” Miller said, “and the new parking threw a few of them off, which we knew it would. People were very orderly and patient, and we got them all parked. We apprecaite all of their help.”

Vehicles began arriving as early as 6 a.m. and were positioned on city streets until 2 p.m. How many vehicles? “I couldn’t begin to tell you,” Miller said. “No doubt it was several hundred, easily, with thousands of people walking the streets.”

Miller said he envisioned minor tweaking to the plan for next year, but he was pleased with the results this year. “We’re going to make full use of the parking lot behind City Hall and all of Jackson Street, which will connect Lameuse and Main streets and make it that much better.”
See hundreds of photos from today



Biloxi Public Schools STEM programs to receive $1 million grant

The Biloxi Public School District has announced a five-year, $1 million  partnership with the Department of Defense Education Activity to enhance Biloxi’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics programs, also known as STEM, and provide more transitional support for military-connected students and families.

The grant, known as Operation IMPACT (Improving Mathematical Practices and Access to Counseling and Technology),will focus on professional development for all K-12 staff, implementation of programs that will increase student awareness of STEM programs and careers, as well as increase the levels of social and emotional support of military students.

“Operation IMPACT will support the professional development of STEM programs and increase the effectiveness of educators in the classroom,” said Dr. Janice Johnson, assistant superintendent at Biloxi Public Schools. “All students in the four target schools will benefit. We look forward to the additional opportunities this grant will provide across the district.”

The grant includes Jeff Davis Elementary, Popp’s Ferry Elementary, North Bay Elementary and Biloxi Junior High.  “Our military families and students are a vital part of our district, and we’re excited about this great opportunity to enrich their educational experience here in Biloxi,” Superintendent Arthur McMillan said.

Biloxi is the only district in the state to receive this award this year.
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