What? Biloxi’s closed? Au contraire, mon ami

(The writer is a columnist in BNews Monthly, the citywide newsletter mailed to all Biloxi residents and businesses. The nom de plume is a homage to the late Walter Fountain, original olde crab, longtime editor of the Biloxi-D’Iberville Press, and longtime Biloxi Chamber of Commerce manager.)

By Nick L. Shrimp

So I’m minding my own business one morning this week and Cousin Earl from Lafayette calls me on his batphone (he refuses to give up his flip phone) to complain that Biloxi was closing for the July Fourth holiday.

“It was in USA Today,” Earl assured me. “The Mississippi River flowed out all over y’all and the beach and the water’s been closed,” he shouted. “Ain’t no use coming over there now. We’ll cancel our hotel and stay home until y’all open back up. There’s nothing to do if we can’t dump our skiff in the water.”

Sorry to deflate your confidence in the journalistic integrity of USA Today, Cousin Earl, but Biloxi has not closed down because of freshwater intrusion and algae blooms. And we won’t be closing even if it gets worse – which it most likely will – before it gets better.

Yes, all that nasty river water flowing down from the Mississippi watershed is killing our crabs and oysters, reducing the size and quality of our shrimp, and creating harmful bacteria in the western Mississippi Sound. But so far there are no beach closings in Biloxi, no warnings to stay out of the water and no concerns about eating that flounder you gigged last night in the shallows between Treasure Bay and the Broadwater Marina.

And even if the algae blooms make it over this way, and people are told not to swim in the Mississippi Sound, there are more than enough things to do and see and experience all across Biloxi. Come for the July Fourth holiday or come anytime. There’s something for everyone, whether you dip your toes in the water or not.

We have world class food from fine dining restaurants to the best breakfasts, burgers and shakes, sushi, poboys, fresh seafood, pho and bánh mi, hot French bread and beignets, Mexican food and Italian food, and the most delectable and decadent desserts.

We have cushiony sand beaches for sunning, walking and playing on. We have piers and boardwalks for pedestrians and cyclists. We have golf courses and charter boats and schooners and yes, even pickleball courts. We have theaters and museums celebrating our history and our culture. We have guided tours and impromptu visits with Mayor FoFo in his office on the second floor of the historical marble palace known as City Hall.

We have historic homes to enjoy on a beachfront drive along U.S. 90, and the iconic Biloxi Lighthouse, which offers climbing tours and 360-degre views in the lantern room. Step safely across the highway from the Lighthouse to the Biloxi Visitors Center for historical perspective, hurricane documentaries and unique souvenirs to take home.

Catch a Double-A Minor League baseball game at fabulous MGM Park, home of the Biloxi Shuckers. Or enjoy a wide variety of live entertainment inside the Coliseum or one of our world class resorts. Take the kids to Margaritaville or Big Play or to a relaxing pool.

Did we mention fireworks? Check. Three shows. Wednesday, July 3, brought to you by the Shuckers at MGM Park; Thursday, July 4 on Biloxi front beach; and Saturday, July 6, over the Back Bay of Biloxi, sponsored by Scarlet Pearl and IP casino resorts.

 You want great, affordable food? Check.

You want to be entertained by nationally famous performers? Check.

You want outdoor recreation from deep sea fishing to floundering to golf? Check.

You want leisurely strolls on the beachfront? Check.

You want cool cocktails in quiet lounges, or mixed with pulsing music? Check.

You want to see brown pelicans, jumping Biloxi Bacon, dolphins? Check.

You want to have unending activities to choose from? Check.

Come for a day or two. And stay a week. We got you.
Video: Biloxi, who we are
Video: Your invitation to visit – and relax
For your perusal, a day-by-day itinerary
See the lineup of activities awaiting your visit