October 23 - 29, 2013
JACKSONIAN A.B. NICHOLS
.B. Nichols has spent a lifetime in education, but it never ceases to amaze her how much a person continues to learn throughout life. “There’s a million ways to learn now,” Nichols says. While Nichols sees the potential in educational tools such as the Internet, the 62 year old uses more immersive, handson techniques to introduce young children to Mississippi’s agricultural traditions and lifestyle. She is co-operator and owner of Nichols Enterprises, a family-owned farm in Rankin County, with her husband Roy Nichols. “You would be surprised how often children really don’t know where their groceries come from,” Nichols says. “We try to individualize our tours for our guests during the week by supplying a tour guide and tractor driver who explain to the visitors how pumpkins grow as well as what the harvest season is like. They also tell the kids about the animals that we have here on the farm.” Each October, A.B. and Roy team up with the adjacent Boyd farms to offer their annual pumpkin patch tour. The joint venture started in 1996 when the Nichols bought their property in Sandhill and grew Christmas trees until Hurricane Katrina took them away. Now, the multi-operational farm has a variety of livestock and crops. “It’s really rewarding to see the children
enjoy themselves, since many don’t enjoy this on a day-to-day basis,” Nichols says. Many of the seasonal employees at the pumpkin patch are also former educators. They try to give an educational experience to all who come to the farm. The staff considers the colorful wagons used in the tours as “mobile classrooms,” which allow both the young and old to be more in touch with learning through the senses. “Not only do we cater to children, but we also have senior citizens that come to the farm,” Nichols says. “They are often individuals who grew up on a farm and are fascinated with (how) the farm has evolved.” Nichols and her husband also give back to the community with their “Nick Trees” operation for the Blair E. Batson Hospital for Children. During the holiday season, they sell Fraser fir trees to different retail locations in the metro area, and a portion of the proceeds go to the children’s hospital. As for the future, Nichols hopes to take it “one season at a time.” “We have had children who came when it first opened who now bring their children,” Nichols says. “It’s been wonderful to be a part of many families’ traditions.” To schedule a tour of Nichols Enterprises (3970 Highway 43 N., Brandon), call 601829-0800. Unscheduled tours are only available on weekends. Visit nicholsenterprisesllc.com. —Justin Hosemann
Cover illustration by Kristin Brenemen
11 2 Become 1
After many years of planning and deliberating, the 2 Museums Project is nearly ready to break ground on the new Museum of Mississippi History and the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum. Although the museums will be separate entities, they will work together as a unified presentation of the state’s past.
29 Howl On
The Howlin’ Brothers band, comprised of three New York natives, brings its Americana string sound to Hal & Mal’s Oct. 26.
30 Saturday Night Live
Improvisation was an integral part of the rehearsal process for Belhaven University’s latest production, “Johanne d’Arc.”
4 ............................. EDITOR’S NOTE 8 ............................................ TALKS 14 ................................ EDITORIAL 15 .................................... OPINION 16 ........ BEST OF JACKSON RECAP 17 ............................ COVER STORY 25 ......................................... FOOD 28 ..................... GIRL ABOUT TOWN 29 .............................. DIVERSIONS 30 .......................................... ARTS 31 ....................................... 8 DAYS 32 ............................... JFP EVENTS 34 ....................................... MUSIC 35 ....................... MUSIC LISTINGS 37 ..................................... SPORTS 39 .................................... PUZZLES 41 ....................................... ASTRO 42 ............................................ GIG
COURTESY DAVID SPRAYBERRY; JOSHUA BLACK WILKINS; COURTESY MDAH
OCTOBER 23 - 29, 2013 | VOL. 12 NO. 7
by Donna Ladd, Editor-in-Chief
No Time to Fear
ot many days after my last editor’s note—about the determination of young Mississippians like the subSIPPI filmmakers to stay and build in Mississippi—I was staying in a hotel in Atlanta’s midtown. I was there as a fellow in a journalism conference on school discipline that my graduate school hosted, and no small part of the conversation was about the problems that underfunded and, often, resegregated public schools face. One speaker, a white parent and student advocate from the previously very-white Gwinnett County, Ga., talked about how discriminatory school discipline had followed black families from urban schools to the suburban ones in her district. I looked up an article on my iPad as she talked that explained that, in the Atlanta metro, many people of color are now moving into the suburbs even as many whites, especially younger ones, are beating a path back into Atlanta, including into booming neighborhoods like midtown where we were staying. That fact has mixed blessings. Certainly, it’s great for the city to see the reverse of the white flight that plagued it and cities such as Jackson after Jim Crow ended in the 1970s. But on issues such as school discipline, crime perceptions and school funding, the movement of more African Americans to suburbs sadly means that many whites either pull their kids out of the public schools or pick up and move farther out. It also means that discriminatory school discipline (or “zero tolerance” as the increase in suspensions and expulsions is often called, or the “cradle to prison pipeline”) follows families of color, as our speaker illustrated. Now before some of you wig out at that idea, as many did when I dared even mention our historic “white flight” in my last column, you should know that study after study (including a huge one in Texas
coming in January and even supported by Texas conservatives) show that children of color are disciplined more harshly for the same or lesser offenses than white kids. It is simply not an issue of “black kids act up more,” as many really want us to believe. Put another way, just as white flight created larger problems for the areas left
The grass isn’t greener, or safer, in another cow pasture or flood plain somebody wants to develop. behind—problems that inevitably catch up with those who flee—the lack of resolution for discriminatory school discipline follows the flight path as well. When a school falls into the predictable, and often unintentional, pattern of using school discipline that has a disparate impact on kids of color, it tends to treat all kids, including white ones, harsher than before. Because, in a twisted way, that is the only way to claim “equal” treatment. As I was sitting in these fascinating sessions getting more educated about school discipline—one of my graduate-study focuses, but I was rusty on developments of the last decade—I couldn’t help but think about how solutions to so many problems
created by past discrimination are right beyond our fingertips. It’s as if we just won’t stretch another few inches and grasp them. Watching the predictable string of angry comments under my subSIPPI column—all because I dared say “white flight” out loud—just makes me shake my head. Is there seriously anyone out there who honestly believes that the entire world doesn’t know that our state handled race relations poorly? Saying the words “white flight” out loud, especially in a positive column about change, won’t suddenly alert the world that Jackson (or Atlanta or Memphis or New Orleans) has been so challenged in recent years because so many families pulled up roots and moved before they would let their kids go to school with African Americans. This is a well-known fact already. We can stipulate now that such a decision was shortsighted. But the key is to look at it, and at the problem of kicking vulnerable kids out of school and onto the streets to get into more trouble, and ask ourselves what we can do instead of continuing to make the kinds of decisions that created these problems in the first place. Instead of selling and moving a bit closer to Vaiden if your block gets past the diversity “tipping point,” how can you build new relationships that help all families? Instead of, say, making it easier to suspend or expel more kids for increasingly lesser offenses to pretend that discipline disparities haven’t existed for decades, why don’t we join together as a community to figure out better solutions for all kids? And while we’re at it, why don’t we make the baseline the belief that all young people have potential and that their lives are valuable—even if and when they do something stupid? While in midtown Atlanta, we walked around a lot and were astounded by the street activity day and night, with active sidewalk cafes and diverse people of all ages
wandering the sidewalks, laughing, talking. That area has changed tremendously in a decade or so, and it’s because people decided they wanted to live, play and enjoy life in their city, despite its problems. Put another way, they decided to stop running and invest in their city. It probably also doesn’t hurt anything that about everywhere you look, you see a major thoroughfare named for Dr. King or Rev. Ralph David Abernathy. A while back, Atlanta made the decision that its city was “too busy to hate” and embraced its past, which has both helped its tourism industry and made it a better place to live for residents of all races. And make no mistake: There are people who still live in the past there, mired in hate and fear of “the other,” who aren’t happy about it. But it’s not up to them. Here in Jackson, and in Mississippi as a whole, we must make the decision that we are too busy to live in constant fear and start talking up our city and living its potential. Just as I said in my last editor’s note about the zoo, it makes no sense to just pick it up and move it to a place where some white folks feel more comfortable—for the moment—until those same people decide to pick up and run away from diversity once again. That is a vicious cycle, and we lose every time it spins around again. It’s time to dig in here and now. The grass isn’t greener, or safer, in another cow pasture or flood plain somebody wants to develop. Our strength as a city and state is in our shared history—just as in Atlanta—if we allow it to be. Go to the new civil rights museum when it opens, invite someone of another race or background over for dinner, open yourself up to frank conversations. I’ve long believed Mississippi can be the most impressive state in the union if we decide to be. We had farther to come for greatness, and we’ve thus come farther than other states. Let’s complete this journey.
October 23 - 29, 2013
Kelly Bryan Smith
Editorial Intern Justin Hosemann is a native of Vicksburg. He recently graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi. He wrote a Halloween piece and the story about “The Laramie Project” at Ole Miss.
Editorial Assistant Amber Helsel graduated from Ole Miss with a bachelor’s in journalism. She is short, always hungry and always thinking. She wrote for the cover package.
R.L. Nave, native Missourian and news editor, roots for St. Louis—and for Jackson. Send him news tips at rlnave@jacksonfreepress. com. He contributed to the talk section.
Brinda Fuller Willis often plays tricks on people with her identical twin. She’ll go anywhere to hear the blues, and she is a real farmer’s daughter. She wrote an art story.
Editorial Intern Mo Wilson is a Millsaps College student. He enjoys pizza, the Internet, dancing alone in his bedroom, social justice, politics and giggling. He helped factcheck for the issue.
Music Listings Editor Tommy Burton plays bass with Lately David, collects records, sees movies and travels a lot with his wife, Michelle. He wrote a music story.
Kelly Bryan Smith is a Fondren mom, nurse and writer. In her spare time, she practices yoga, builds garage apartments and fights crime with her son, Batman.
Advertising Designer Andrea Thomas is a lover of music, fashion and good food. She spends her free time exploring everything Jackson has to offer. She designed many of the ads for the issue.
October 31, 2013 compliments of Kinkade’s Fine Clothing
food vendors from Jackson’s newest restaurants at The Belhaven purchase tickets online at ardenland.net
Showcasing the Grand Opening of
1200 North State Street, Jackson, MS
events include: !"Performances by Back\Slash, Brave Baby, Maggie Eckford & The Weeks !""#$%&'(")&*+%$",-$./.0$'"1%+%2(/0* !""3&4405%%*"6$-*7"0$"6$%&(/*8"" 9:;;<=:>;"2? !"",/8*"(@%"0A+/&4"B05%$"0C"B/*7" )&?2&/8*")&$
maggie eckford brave baby
5:00 pm – 9:30 pm
5 The Following Is Not For Print/For Information Only Placement: Jackson Free Press. 10/2013. 9.5” x 6.167”. Commissioned by Robby Channell. (eMac/Users/mbhs/Documents/PROJECTS/Ads/Center for Breast Health/Pink Night Out ad)
[YOU & JFP] Cindy Hatton Smith Age: 59 How long have you lived in Jackson? All my life. Whatâ€™s your favorite part of Jackson? Meadowbrook Road to Fondren.
Write us: email@example.com Tweet us: @JxnFreePress Facebook: Jackson Free Press
Favorite quote: â€œI can do anything through him who gives me strength.â€? â€”Philippians 4:13
WHAT HALLOWEEN COSTUME ARE YOU EXPECTING TO SEE EVERYWHERE THIS YEAR? Julia Comfort Miley Cyrus in the bear leotard, with her tongue sticking out all night. Eric Martin Horse-head masks. Gena Hall Stringer Miley Cyrus ... Lol. Might be a skimpy costume, though.
Letter to the Editor Laurie Bertram Roberts (Oct. 16) rightly points out that we should focus more on primary research into the causes of breast cancer. Our series of manufactured fiscal crises (sequesters, government shutdowns, etc.) are making this harder to do. The government agencies (National Science Foundation, Centers for Disease Control and others), which provide much of the funding for basic scientific research in this country, have been hard hit. We are losing a generation of young researchers as grants dry up, research teams are broken up, careers ending and vital projects terminated. This is particularly unfortunate now, just as our knowledge of the human genome has equipped us to understand the basis of so many illnesses. Those creating havoc with serial crises are threatening the health of us all.
Charles Jackson Zombies, of course!
Mike Nyiri Witchesâ€”I see them all year â€™round.
Nominate Power Couples for BOOM Jackson!
Larry Butts Ted Cruz in a clown suit? Meagan Alyse Miley Cyrus.
This is the last week to nominate amazing duos for this yearâ€™s Power Couples, to appear in the Jan.-Feb. issue. We want to know about couples (married or not) who are making Jackson a better place, be they doctors, lawyers, coaches, businesspeople, artists, professors, administrators, nonprofit organizers or something else entirely. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to suggest great couples, and check out boomjackson.com to see last yearâ€™s Power Couples issue.
Tara Hunter What Meagan said.
-OST 6IRAL 3TORIES AT JFPMS
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Best of Jackson 2014 is coming soon. The ballot will launch online at bestofjackson.com next Wednesday, Oct. 30. Then, look for a paper ballot the following week, in the Nov. 6 issue of the JFP.
October 23 - 29, 2013
Skylar Laine at the 2103
Great Delta Bear Affair Saturday, October 26 Downtown Rolling Fork, MS
Live Music All Day Arts, Crafts & Food Vendors
Trackless Train • Bungee Jump Magician • Space Jump
5K Run/Walk & Kids Fun
FIREWORKS WELCOME TO
Local Events, Sales and Specials for iPhone and Android.
Text ‘Jackson’ to 77948 to get download links
Type to enter text
WELCOME LAUNCH WEEKTO IS JACKTOWN. NOVEMBER 4-10 Download the Jacktown App and get special discounts at local retailers including a $5 admission to THE BRIGHT LIGHT SOCIAL HOUR w/ BLACK TAXI & CLEAR PLASTIC MASKS on November 4.
For more information, call 662.873.6261 or visit greatdeltabearaffair.org
Run Indian Mound Tours
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Thursday, Oct. 17 President Barack Obama signs a measure into law reopening the federal government and averting a potential default. â€Ś The U.N. General Assembly elects Nigeria, Chad, Saudi Arabia, Lithuania and Chile to the Security Council. Friday, Oct. 18 Saudi Arabia rejects its seat on the U.N. Security Council, saying the 15member body is incapable of resolving world conflicts such as the Syrian civil war. â€Ś The New Jersey state Supreme Court upholds an order legalizing samesex marriages in the state. Saturday, Oct. 19 The Grambling State University football team boycotts the annual homecoming game against Jackson State University to protest conditions at the schoolâ€™s athletic complex and other issues. â€Ś Two convicted killers freed from a Florida prison by phony documents are captured together without incident at a Panama City motel. Sunday, Oct. 20 Iranâ€™s parliament speaker warns that lawmakers could call for stepped-up atomic work if the West presses too hard for concessions in ongoing nuclear negotiations.
October 23 - 29, 2013
Monday, Oct. 21 New Jersey begins recognizing gay marriages at 12:01 a.m., becoming the 14th state to do so. â€Ś President Obama speaks at a White House event to acknowledge the widespread problems with his health care lawâ€™s rollout.
Tuesday, Oct. 22 Nevada police reveal that a student who wounded two classmates and killed a teacher and then himself on a middle school campus Monday was 12 years old. Get news updates at jfpdaily.com.
â€˜One Lakeâ€™ Draws Mixed Reax by R.L. Nave
fter years of planning, debate and revision, public sentiment about a plan to dam part of the Pearl River and create a lake that is designed to reduce flooding in Jackson and draw real-estate investments still appears to be muddled. Through a public-records request the Jackson Free Press obtained written comments submitted as part of a Aug. 29 â€œscoping meeting.â€? The documents reflect mixed feelings on the plan locals call â€œOne Lake.â€? In his written comments, Tom Fortner, president of the Fondren Renaissance Foundation, expressed concerns about flooding on Eubanks Creek and other waterways in Fondren and said he wants to increase flood protection in vulnerable areas of the capital city. â€œI donâ€™t think the minimal environmental impact resulting from the One Lake plan outweighs the flood protection and economic benefits of the One Lake plan. This would be a game changer for Jackson, and we would be foolish not to embrace it,â€? Fortner wrote in his comments. Other comments seemed less measured. Many forms filled out by people who might be characterized as pro-One Lake primarily focused on the economic-development benefits of the proposed 1,500-acre six-mile-long lake from Lakeland Drive stretching south to the town of Richland. Robert Graham, president of the Hinds County Board of Supervisors, pledged his â€œ100 percent supportâ€? of One Lake. Comments that could be characterized as anti-One Lake centered on the involvement of wealth investors such as â€œTwo Lakesâ€? mastermind and oil businessman John McGowan, who owned land in the footprint of
Wednesday, Oct. 16 Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif announces that his country will meet again with six powers within weeks to further discuss ways to ease fears that Iran may want atomic arms. â€Ś Mississippi Republican U.S. Reps. Steven Palazzo and Alan Nunnelee vote against a resolution to end the 16day partial government shutdown.
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A flood-control and development plan that oilman John McGowan envisioned is running up against many of the same reactions that doomed past projects.
the proposed â€œTwo Lakesâ€? plan and whose business partners still own land in the revised lake footprint. Christopher B. King, a representative of the Jackson Audubon Society, pointed to the more than 60 avian species that live in a LeFleurâ€™s Bluff State Park. â€œThe park is of too great of importance to be altered in any way. The park offers inner-city children their one and only chance to experience the truly unique habitat that cannot be substituted for another park,â€? King wrote. In 2011, McGowan formed a nonprofit called the Pearl River Vision Foundation
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to promote the revised lake project, which he believes can reduce flooding and attract economic investment from developers. Under federal law and an agreement with the Rankin-Hinds Pearl River Flood and Drainage Control District (aka the Levee Board), PRVF is completing engineering work on an environmental-impact assessment . McGowan initially suggested that he would pay for the study himself. In May, the Mississippi Development Authority gave the Levee Board a $1 million grant for the flood-control study. Dallas Quinn, a PRVF spokesman, said the group hopes develop a required alternative plan by Dec. 1
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