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JACKSONIAN William Thomas Imani KHayyam


illiam Wesley Thomas, 28, is the first nursing student at the University of Mississippi Medical Center to be elected the Associated Student Body president since the School of Nursing’s establishment in 1948. He will be sworn in as president for the 2017-2018 school year. “I would like to see the nursing school gain a better presence on campus,” Thomas says. “I want to see it come out of its bubble like I did.” Thomas, a Ridgeland native, began nursing school at UMMC in May 2016. He will receive his bachelor’s degree in nursing next year. While he says the election was brutal, it was also fun and worth it in the process because he got to test his limits, meet people from all of the schools, and gain the encouragement and support of faculty. “One of the greatest qualities about UMMC is that it’s a collaborative hospital,” Thomas says. “Rather than hierarchy, ideas are able to be fleshed out. In the nursing school, we are taught to be advocates for our patients and ourselves, and we are encouraged to speak up. That’s what stands out to me about UMMC as a whole and the School of Nursing.” Many doctors in the School of Nursing encourage him, but for Thomas, Dr.


Josie Bidwell stands out. He says Bidwell, who is a nurse practitioner, takes on many roles and gives 100-percent effort in every one of them. “My teachers really have taught me a lot about leadership,” Thomas says. “Seeing Dr. Bidwell as a high achiever made me want to achieve the most I could, so I just started throwing myself into everything.” Thomas says he finds excitement in his additional roles as a class president, parliamentarian for the School of Nursing student body, secretary for Mississippi Association of Student Nurses and the student representative for the undergraduate curriculum committee. He will also become the ambassador for the School of Nursing in late February. Outside school, Thomas participates in cooking and workout classes, and tutors students across the Jackson metro area. “I’m dedicated to what I do,” Thomas says. “I don’t take on jobs lightly. I research and analyze so I usually know what I’m getting into.” Ruthlessly prioritizing and color-coding events in his calendar are a couple of the ways he stays on top of it all. With enough dedication, prioritization, hard work and ultimately belief in oneself, anything is possible, Thomas says. —Morgan Gallon

cover illustration by Zilpha Young

6 ............................ Talks 12 ................... editorial 13 ...................... opinion 16 ........................ People 22 .... Community & Culture 24 ........ Nightlife & music 24 ............................ Food 42 ........... Urban Living 56 ......................... 8 Days 57 ........................ Events

8 A Path to School Choice?

A New Jersey nonprofit’s education recommendations could hurt low-income students.

12 A Tourist in Your City

“Before I move to a new place, people often ask me: ‘Do you know anyone who lives there?’ My answer is always: ‘Not yet.’ For some people, that’s frightening. For me, it’s invigorating.” —Dawn Dugle, “Your Guide to Jackson”

57 ....................... sports 58 ........ music listings 60 ...................... Puzzles 61 ......................... astro 61 ............... Classifieds

16 Best of Jackson: People

Check out some of the coolest people in town, such as Babalu Tapas & Tacos bartender Chareese Kent.

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

4 ............ Editor’s Note

Imani Khayyam; courtesy Dawn Dugle; Imani Khayyam

January 25 - 31, 2017 | Vol. 15 No. 21


editor’s note

by Donna Ladd, Editor-in-Chief

These Are the Best of Times


o doubt, we’re living through unsettling times. It would be easy to get depressed and angry at everything that lies before us to get done and repair—from a national political divide, to budget problems in the Capitol and City Hall, to local potholes that can eat a Hummer with few efficient and fast solutions for any of them. But tough times are when hope thrives. And they require community and connection—something this city has, even if it’s challenged more often than we’d all prefer. When we published the first Best of Jackson issue 15 years ago this week, no publication or company had looked at the capital city seriously enough to think about celebrating what’s “best” about it. We did, and that’s why we started this newspaper in fall 2002—to help refocus our diverse readership on what is great and possible right here in our own front yard. Progress requires hope and dogged belief that we can grow and thrive. Allowing political and petty division to take center stage only moves a city, community or country backward. In 2001, when I returned to my home state of Mississippi, Jackson was a sleeping giant of a creative center for the state, but too many people didn’t know each other, and too many were looking for the next train out. All of you have done incredible work in that decade and a half. We’ve watched a city and region really find its progressive voice—culminating in a huge (by Mississippi standards) Women’s March here last weekend in a metro where many people were simply afraid to question the status quo 15 years ago. Now, we’re seeing power in numbers and a desire to lift our city up to where she could be across political lines.

Best of Jackson celebrates that spirit. We see the Best of Jackson every single day. Every time we walk into a McDade’s grocer—which for my household is several times a week—we’re trading with a local couple who decided to grow grocery stores into old spaces the big-box versions abandoned, from Ms. Eudora’s old Jitney 14 to

My response is to stay in the fight and look for the light. Westland Plaza. The McDades and their determination are the Best of Jackson. When the Jackson City Council stayed inside City Hall late one night last year to pass a resolution affirming all people’s rights, including LGBT citizens, after the governor signed the horrendous HB 1523 a few blocks away, that was the Best of Jackson. Every time the Jackson State University Sonic Boom takes the field after hours of practice and stellar work ethic, we hear and see the Best of Jackson. When I drive by our old building at 2727 Old Canton Road in Fondren and see how Weir Boerner Allin Architecture is remaking that crumbling, neglected edifice into something magnificent instead of tearing it down and rebuilding on the property, I smile at the Best of Jackson. Whenever I hear about the amazing

work of Operation Shoestring, the Children’s Defense Fund, Springboard to Opportunities and Parents for Public Schools to lift up our young people rather than disparage and stereotype them, I feel uplifted by the Best of Jackson. Each time I walk into a locally owned business and see the owner, who has usually put everything they have into creating something unique for our city—from The Pig and Pint to E&L Barbecue to Hickory Pit—I feel the wonderful spirit of investing money in Jackson that will stay here and help build community and futures here, rather than the majority of the profits leaving town and the state. This is why the Best of Jackson does not honor national chains that look and serve the same all over the nation; that is not celebrating the best of Jackson or intentionally building up local entrepreneurs or artists, which is what these reader’s choice awards are designed to do. Look, I know it’s not always easy; it’s not for us, either. Mississippi is a tough state to live in, period, due to our historic economic woes and political division. Then selecting the oft-maligned capital city as a place to grow and prosper takes special effort, with many forces aligned against us. But that is exactly what I love most about Jackson: that spirit of loving it to death, or more succinctly, loving it to life—a spirit all the best of Jackson share. Many of us are here precisely because we feel called to build a stronger city, and thus state, and we join forces to do it. The challenges, of course, are the negative people who either want to tear the city down for their own purposes, or who are scarred and weary of what it takes to keep moving forward. The state has to deal with people across the nation looking

down on us, and the city has to navigate many around the state trying to weaken our resolve and alliances. No wonder some get infected with a petty spirit (thinking of the tiny-but-loud group of people angry when they don’t win Best of Jackson awards). My response is to stay in the fight and look for the light. Celebrate each other’s victories and learn from those who grow and win, including these awards. Best of Jackson winners do much more than create a great product or piece of music. They engage with community, they show love and appreciation for what they’re given, they work to lift themselves and the city and their neighbors up. You can call that smart marketing—which it is—or you can call it an abundant spirit, which it also is. Speaking of abundance, we literally have the best Jackson Free Press staff we’ve ever had. They have worked both hard and smart to assemble this issue and the awards ceremony next weekend. They are a team, positive and kind to each other. Many cheers to Associate Publisher Kimberly Griffin, Art Director Kristin Brenemen and Managing Editor Amber Helsel who have grown into amazing leaders, which really shows with every Best of Jackson season. When our family closed on the second house we’ve bought within the city limits in just over a year last week, I thought a lot about commitment and putting down roots. Both Todd and I wandered a lot in the past, often with too little family near. Now as more come nearer to us rather than the other way around, I’m feeling the spirit of commitment to a place in a way I never have. And to continuing to do my part to make it the best home it can possibly be. Follow Editor-in-chief and CEO Donna Ladd on Twitter at @donnerkay.

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms



Amber Helsel

Imani Khayyam

Micah Smith

Jessica Smith

Tyler Edwards

Emerald Alexis Ware

Tim Summers Jr.

Arielle Dreher

Some call newly promoted Managing Editor Amber Helsel the Demon Lady of Food (not really, but she wouldn’t object). She likes to cook, eat, make art and pet cats. Email story ideas to amber@jacksonfreepress.com. She co-coordinated this issue.

Staff Photographer Imani Khayyam is an art lover and a native of Jackson. He loves to be behind the camera and capture the true essence of his subjects. He took many, many, many, many, many photos for the issue.

Music Editor Micah Smith is married to a great lady, has two dog-children named Kirby and Zelda, and plays in the band Empty Atlas. Send gig info to music@jacksonfreepress.com. He co-coordinated the Best of Jackson issue.

Freelance writer Jessica Smith is a Jackson-based musician and community activist. Outside of writing, she enjoys exploring parts of the city that are unknown to her. She wrote Best of Jackson blurbs.

Events Editor Tyler Edwards loves film, TV and all things pop culture. He’s a Jackson native and will gladly debate the social politics of comic books. Send events to events@jacksonfreepress.com. He wrote Best of Jackson blurbs.

Freelance writer Alexis Ware is a senior at the University of Southern Mississippi. She has raging wanderlust and an obsession with Pinterest and all things 20-something. She wrote Best of Jackson blurbs.

City Reporter Tim Summers Jr. enjoys loud live music, teaching his cat to fetch, long city council meetings and FOIA requests. Send him ideas at tim@jacksonfreepress.com. He reported on Jackson’s new infrastructure bill and DJP.

State Reporter Arielle Dreher is working on finding some new hobbies and adopting an otter from the Jackson Zoo. Email her story ideas at arielle@jacksonfreepress.com. She took a deep dive into EdBuild for this issue.


January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

“I tell you George Orwell on LSD would blush at the way they’re using the word ‘transparent.’” — Sen. Hob Bryan, D-Amory, commenting on the transparency claims of EdBuild’s recommendations for changing Mississipipi’s education funding formula

Wednesday, January 18 The Mississippi House narrowly rejects HB 55, a Republican-sponsored bill to limit Democratic Attorney General Jim Hood’s powers. … Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce Cindy Hyde-Smith announces that the Mississippi Trade Mart in Jackson will be razed and replaced with a new exhibit hall attached to the Coliseum.

Friday, January 20 Jackson City Council President Tyrone Hendrix of Ward 6 says the city should leverage its 1-percent sales-tax allocation to draw in funds to address infrastructure. … Donald Trump takes the oath of office in Washington, D.C. Saturday, January 21 More than 1 million people rally at women’s marches in Washington, D.C., and cities around the world including Jackson to protest Donald Trump. … Donald Trump complains about the media and lies about the size of the crowd attending his inauguration during a visit to CIA headquarters.

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Sunday, January 22 Mexican protesters take control of vehicle lanes on the south side of one of the busiest crossings on the U.S. border to oppose Mexican gasoline price hikes.


Monday, January 23 Donald Trump vows to impose a “substantial border tax” on companies that move their manufacturing out of the United States. Tuesday, January 24 Sen. John Horhn, D-Jackson, announces that he will run for mayor of Jackson, vowing to bring “results.” Get breaking news at jfpdaily.com.

Mo’ Money for Streets This Year? by Tim Summers Jr.


ackson legislators are working with city leaders to bridge the gap between needed infrastructure improvements totaling over $1 billion, and the City’s tight budget. Last year, a potentially significant bill called the Capitol Complex Improvement District failed in the final hours of the legislative session after Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves and other leaders inserted last-minute language during conference between the House of Representatives and Senate that included a special appointed judge to rule over crimes in what would have been a separate judicial district in the interior of downtown. Jackson now has several paths to becoming the beneficiary of state support, and not all of the capital city’s legislators support every plan. Giving Bryant More Control During a small informal meeting at the Greater Belhaven Neighborhood Foundation on Jan. 12, Sen. David Blount, D-Jackson, explained that his approach to the problem of supplementing Jackson’s infrastructure while placating state interests is to hand the reins over to the governor. “The new proposal this year essentially gives Governor Bryant and his appointee the power to choose where to spend this money in the City of Jackson, and I don’t really have a problem with that,” Blount said. He said he pitched the legislation to

F u n

is called the “State Capital Infrastructure Fund Project Advisory Committee.” The DFA head would chair this committee which at the moment consists of 11 members: the mayor’s three appointees, two for the governor, one for the lieutenant gover-

Sen. David Blount, D-Jackson, proposes a new and improved version of the city’s infrastructure plan that failed last year. It would place $24 million under the control of the state Department of Finance and Administration.

is a gubernatorial appointee. The bill would also create a committee of informed parties, including University of Mississippi Medical Center and Jackson State University representatives, who would create a plan for the money, a plan that would then pass on to the Jackson City Council for approval. The committee

nor, one member from the speaker of the house, one seat for the president of Jackson State University, one selected by the dean of the University of Mississippi School of Medicine, one appointed by the Board of Trustees for the Mississippi Department of Archives and History, and finally, the DFA head or his or her designee.

w i t h

A lt e r n at i v e

F a c ts by Micah Smith


the governor the day before while Bryant had his cowboy boots shined. Blount’s bill hands the new infrastructure program, estimated to be about $24 million a year, over to the state Department of Finance and Administration, whose head

Imani Khayyam

Thursday, January 19 The Mississippi Legislature adopts a bipartisan resolution calling outgoing President Obama “one of the most consequential presidents in recent history.” … U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks blocks Texas from ousting Planned Parenthood from the state’s Medicaid program over secretly recorded videos taken by anti-abortion activists in 2015.

The politics and history of EdBuild p8

ook, we get how some people could call White House press secretary Sean Spicer’s claim that President Trump’s inauguration turnout was the largest ever as a lie. Thankfully, the president’s senior adviser, Kellyanne Conway, set the record straight, revealing that the lies were actually just “alternative facts.” Problem solved! We thought we’d submit a few alternative facts of our own.

Education budget cuts are a sign of the state’s confidence in your thriftiness. The FBI investigating your AD spells “A-OK!” The Women’s March didn’t happen; several million women just happened to be hanging out with signs.

Potholes are just beauty marks for your street. “Kingfish” is an obvious choice for the Jackson Zoo board because he has an animal in his name. President Trump’s approval rating is so high that it broke the system and is showing up as negative.

3 Doors Down only performed at Trump’s Inaugural ball so he would consider them for the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. A bot program seized mayoral hopeful John Horhn’s Twitter and is using it to spout random positive phrases.

“If we get enough women in the right places, we’ll start getting paid the right amount.” — Rep. Alyce Clarke, D-Jackson, speaking to hundreds of Mississippians at the capital for the Women’s March on Jackson

“I think the governor is going to take Capitol Street and fix it.” — Sen. David Blount, D-Jackson, on a state capital infrastructure bill he has introduced for this legislative session.

Allen’s Defense Hangs on DJP’s Public/Private Status by Tim Summers Jr.

“The Department of Finance and Administration shall develop a comprehensive plan for improvement projects in the city in consultation with the State Capital Infrastructure Fund Project Advisory Committee,” Blount’s bill states. “The plan shall attempt to incorporate the needs of the city, the DFA, JSU, the UMMC and the Mississippi Department of Archives and History. Any plan developed by the department must be approved by the governing authorities of the city.” The bill states that the plan may be updated at any time but must be updated at least every five years. The state’s finance department would then implement the plan after City ap-

Downtown Jackson Partners President Ben Allen faces charges that may hinge on whether DJP operates as public or private.

legations, and Sam Begley, a local attorney and member of the DJP board of directors, requested an attorney general’s opinion about the nature of the organization: Was it a public entity, and were the funds it received public? The response pushes the decision over to the courts to determine, such as in current pending litigation against Allen, as well as DJP’s counter civil lawsuit against Brune in Madison County for allegedly forging checks to herself when she worked for Allen. The questions about DJP’s public-private status, the attorney genera’s response states, “require a determination of fact which can only be made by a court of competent jurisdiction; therefore, we are unable to respond with an official opinion.” In his most recent memo to the court asking for dismissal, Allen’s attorney Merrida Coxwell argued that the

proval, Blount said. Some details of the law, such as who would be on the committee that would develop the plan, could change during the legislative process. Last year’s Capitol Complex Improvement District bill laid out a committeebased approval system similar to how the 1-percent sales-tax commission works now, with some of the members appointed by state-interests balanced out against representatives determined by Jackson leaders. “The 1-percent sales tax commission seems to not really be able to operate smoothly,” Blount said of the group assembled to decide how to use funds supposedly targeting Jackson infrastructure. “I think

charges of embezzling by a public official do not apply to Allen because DJP is a “private nonprofit” organization. “This … chapter does not apply to Mr. Allen. He is without a doubt not a public official,” Coxwell wrote. The second set of charges are the allegations that Allen funneled money through the nonprofit DJP as a collection point for donations for the newly elected mayor Tony Yarber in 2014 for his inaugural gala. This time, Coxwell argues that by the time of the gala, Yarber was not a candidate, and so that law would not apply to DJP’s handling of the gala donations. Coxwell included in his filing a document that outlines his interpretation of the differentiation between the types of nonprofits, as delineated in federal law. The subset of regulations, 501, that determine how nonprofits should operate separates the organizations into two categories, 501(c)3 and 501(c)4. Coxwell included a primer entitled “The difference between 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) organizations” that he used to support his supposition that a nonprofit could provide political support. “501(c)(4) organizations can engage in unlimited lobbying so long as it pertains to the organization’s mission. 501(c)(3) organizations are not permitted to engage in political activity, endorse or oppose political candidates, or donate money or time to political campaigns, but 501(c)(4) organizations can do all of the above,” the document states. Wendy Mullins, general counsel for the Mississippi Center for Nonprofits, told the JFP that she could not comment on the public-private question around DJP because her husband is one of the attorneys representing Allen. Chuck Mullins works with Coxwell. Although the BID is registered as a nonprofit, it still

the governor is going to take Capitol Street and fix it.” Other Options, Too Blount’s bill is not the only option on the table this session. DeSoto County’s Sen. David Parker, a Republican, authored a bill that Jackson Sens. Hillman Frazier, Sollie Norwood and John Horhn but not Blount co-authored, designed to create an “Additional Sales Tax Revenue for Municipal Infrastructure Program.” The program would divert monies to municipalities only if the total sales tax revenue, as certified by the Commissioner of Revenue, increased by more than 1 percent over the year before.

more DOWNTOWN, see page 8

Blount said the bill would drain money from the state, if every city took advantage of the program. Sen. Horhn also introduced a way to help the capital city defray some of the costs of maintaining the infrastructure necessary to support the seat of state government, by taking 2 percent of the gasoline, diesel fuel and kerosene taxes on sales within Jackson. This was also a big push from one of the city council members, Ward 4 Councilman De’Keither Stamps, during a council meeting concerning the upcoming legislative session. Email city reporter Tim Summers Jr. at tim@jacksonfreepress.com.

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

‘Private Nonprofit’? In 2014, after a tip from Linda Brune, Allen’s former assistant who registered as whistleblower, the Mississippi State Auditor’s office began an investigation into the DJP’s handling of finances. The investigation began after Brune brought a number of documents to a Clarion-Ledger reporter, who published a story questioning Allen’s handling of funds and resources while serving as the head. The auditor’s office approached the DJP about the al-

File PHoto


hether Downtown Jackson Partners is public or private, governmental or nonprofit, is a pivotal issue in the case against indicted DJP President Ben Allen. Allen faces an indictment of 10 total charges, eight for embezzlement by a public official or trustee, as well as allegations that DJP handled money for then-Mayor-elect Tony Yarber’s inaugural gala. The Hinds County grand-jury indictment states that the gala donations violate Mississippi’s campaign-finance laws preventing private corporations from donating more than $1,000 to political candidates. The charges, thus, cut both ways on an organization that is arguably a public-private entity. DJP’s position as a “business improvement district” that levies what many call “taxes” on business owners within its footprint is a gray area to many, with some arguing that it is handling “public” money and others that is it is a private corporation, both of which figure into the charges against Allen. But Allen’s defense attorneys argue in their motion to dismiss the charges against him that DJP is a private, nonpublic entity, making Allen a private head of a private firm, which they argue makes the charges he faces non-applicable to their version of the facts even if the businesses in the BID must pay the fees to the organization.


TALK | education

EdBuild Plan A Path to Expanding ‘School Choice’? by Arielle Dreher


Georgia Budget and Policy Institute, has had plenty of time to run numbers on the commission’s proposals in the meantime and found that the definition used in the report for economically disadvantaged students would significantly decrease funding to the state’s many low-income students. Georgia schools, like Mississippi’s, get

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

“Recognizing that ‘no, we don’t want to misidentify kids that don’t have financial needs,’ there’s that legitimate concern,” Suggs said. “But now we’re really looking at under-estimating, and this is something that’s not unique to Georgia or Mississippi, so we tried to figure out how other states are grappling with this.”

meaning only students who are eligible for SNAP or TANF benefits, kids in foster care and homeless children would be eligible for the low-income weight of the formula. In Georgia, Suggs said, this is problematic because the state’s SNAP program is set low at 130 percent above the poverty line, and if a family of three makes $9,600 annually, they don’t qualify for TANF.

One Georgia school district’s chief financial officer told the Athens BannerHerald that his district, which has levied the maximum amount of local ad-valorem taxes, would see a slight increase in funding based on the commission’s report. Another superintendent who hadn’t run the

EdBuild CEO Rebecca Sibilia presented recommendations to lawmakers on Jan. 16.

funding for low-income students through the free and reduced lunch program or the federal community eligibility provision. That enables schools or districts with 40 percent of low-income students who qualify for free meals directly (like those certified through SNAP) to receive extra federal funding that applies to the whole district or school—potentially including students in

DOWNTOWN from page 7


the district who aren’t eligible for free and reduced lunch. Critics of the provision say it allots too much money to schools that serve students who do not come from low-income families. To fix this, Georgia lawmakers have suggested changing the definition of a lowincome student to “direct certification,”

Imani Khayyam

ississippi isn’t EdBuild’s first state rodeo. Back in early 2015, EdBuild met with officials in Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal’s office, who campaigned for re-election on the idea of re-evaluating school funding in his state. Deal created a commission to work on the new formula made up of lawmakers, superintendents, teachers and community advocates, to come up with a report of recommendations to the Legislature. EdBuild worked primarily with the officials in Deal’s office, and eventually the funding sub-committee on the commission, until the New Jersey nonprofit’s contract was up. The commission continued its work through 2015, and released a report that December. Georgia should move to a studentbased funding formula, the report recommended, including weights for students based on their grade level, technical and agricultural educations, students with disabilities, gifted students, English language learners and economically disadvantage d students. The report also recommended that Georgia increase funding for its formula by $258 million as well as add more funds when available. Lawmakers there put off the report as the state went through a contentious referendum on a proposed state takeover district in 2016, which ultimately failed. Risk to Low-Income Students Claire Suggs, a policy analyst at the

receives the money levied from businesses, and 70 percent of the property owners in the BID, not necessarily business owners who often rent their spaces, vote to renew the BID. Those owners include those who live out of state and own many properties downtown. This week, DJP announced that 95 percent of property owners in the BID had renewed it for the next 10 years. “A business improvement district may be funded in whole or in part by an assessment authorized pursuant to this section,” the state law authorizing the BID states. “Such assessment shall be in addition to any taxes or assessments that may be imposed on property that is included in the district.” Mississippi law does not call it a “tax.” The most recent plan for the BID included a 1-cent increase to the 2011 amount, raising the additional amount levied against businesses to 11 cents per square foot. Allen compared it to tax assessments for property that

are renewed every few years. “Our assessment will be set in place for 10 years, we can’t change it,” Allen said during the public hearing held about the increase and election on Dec. 12, 2016. “We are very grateful for the overwhelming vote of confidence and support from the property owners and members of the Downtown Jackson Business Improvement District. We look forward to continued growth and many more developments, so that all of our state will be proud of ‘Mississippi’s Downtown,’” Steve Davis, chairman of the DJP Board of Directors, said in a Jan. 23 release announcing the successful renewal vote. BID Issues Elsewhere The question of BID management embezzling or misappropriating the funds their organizations accrue for the betterment of their communities is not unusual. The executive director of the Flatbush Avenue Business Improvement District in Brooklyn, which is a 501(c)(3) was accused in 2015 of “allegedly siphoning off approximately $85,000 from the BID’s budget to pay for personal expenses, such as

more EDBUILD see page 10

food, clothing or entertainment,” the Kings County Politics.com site reported on March 17, 2015. “Davidson, 63, who worked for the BID from June 2009 to January 2014, allegedly made  hundreds of unauthorized purchases with the BID’s debit card. This includes  $3,000 at Fresh Direct, $4,000 at Talbots, $600 for Beyoncé concert tickets, $600 at Weight Watchers, $400 on manicures and pedicures, $13,000 paid through Paypal for items such as shoes, clothing, jewelry and makeup, and numerous purchases from restaurants.” Although Allen is not accused of such lavish purchases, he is charged with paying for his cell-phone bills and credit-card balances with DJP money. Coxwell argues that Allen gave the money back to the organization every time, and the organization backs his handling of the funds. “This key element is missing in the case at bar, and it cannot at any time be supplied or proven by the State: Mr. Allen did not improperly receive money from DJP nor did refuse to turn over money to DJP,” the motion to dismiss states. The trial is set to begin at the end of the month. Read more about these cases at jfp.ms/djp.

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TALK | education

EDBUILD from page 8

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

suggested this kind of flexibility for school districts in how they spend their money as well as a separate “fiscal transparency system” that will require districts to report in granular detail what exactly they are spending all of their funding on. “The reason we have it (the transparency system) in there is that’s the way you consistently re-evaluate whether or not the values are sufficient in the formula,” Sibilia told the Jackson Free Press. Essentially, without increased funding, a weighted student formula would shift dollars around, based on whatever weights lawmakers choose. So some districts might lose some of their state funding, forcing loImani Khayyam

numbers yet told the Banner-Herald that he suspects Suggs’ analysis of the new “lowincome” definition was correct. Georgia lawmakers have not made any decisions, yet, so they still have time to see if they can find a way to capture more lowincome students. In Mississippi, lawmakers have taken the different approach. Mississippi has no commission looking at the Mississippi Adequate Education Program or evaluating the weighted student formula proposals EdBuild rolled out last week. In fact, the EdBuild recommendations came on the deadline day to file legislation in the 2017 session. Lawmakers in both the House and the Senate have dropped boilerplate bills that they could use to make changes to the formula this session. Sibilia warned lawmakers last week that they should phase in any changes they make to the formula, so as to not do harm to students. She told the Jackson Free Press that she hopes the new formula comes up for discussion and debate in the Legislature this year. “We do hope there will be significant debate and movement this year because there’s been a lot of conversation (about formula changes),” Sibilia said in a Jan. 23 interview. EdBuild also worked with Connecticut on weighted student funding, but neither Georgia nor Connecticut has moved on the proposals. Sibilia said she expects this to change in 2017. In Mississippi, not all lawmakers are on board with the idea of ramming a formula change through the statehouse, and several Democrats feel left out of the process, which up until this point has been kept largely behind closed doors. Contentious Political Decisions The day after Sibilia presented her nonprofit’s findings to lawmakers, Sen. Hob Bryan, D-Amory, one of the authors of MAEP, held a public hearing, which other Democrats from both the House and the Senate attended, to discuss weighted student funding and their concerns with the process going forward. One of Bryan’s chief concerns is the dollar amount, or lack thereof, in EdBuild’s presentation. Unlike the Georgia commission’s report, which called out a specific dollar amount of increased funding needed to switch the formula over to a studentfocused one, EdBuild’s report leaves all monetary values out of its recommenda10 tions. Sibilia said the dollar amount is up to

lawmakers, and told the Jackson Free Press that figures used in the 80-page report are “examples only,” not base figures for legislators to use. Sen. Bryan asks what the point of a new formula is if no new money goes into it. Lawmakers at the Jan. 17 hearing and superintendents have told the Jackson Free Press that most districts’ current MAEP funds go entirely or almost entirely to teacher salaries. Bryan wants to know how this formula would change that. “[H]ow on earth is changing the dollar amounts the districts get in any way, shape, form or fashion going to have anything to do with getting more dollars to the class-

Sen. Hob Bryan, D-Amory, (center) has vocalized his concerns about revamping the public-education funding formula in such a secretive way with little transparency from top lawmakers.

room?” Sen. Bryan said at the hearing. As a concept, weighted student funding aims for equity, focusing on funding the highest student needs. Dr. Eric Hanushek, the Paul and Jean Hanna Senior Fellow at Stanford University, analyzes the economics of educational issues. Weighted student funding, Hanushek says is a sensible idea, especially since the goal in most cases is to put money towards school districts that have disadvantaged kids or those that need special education. Weights, however, are the political part of the process, he says. “The debate is always about what are the weights, how much are the weights, and there’s basically no guidance,” Hanushek told the Jackson Free Press. “It’s political decisions—individual states vary widely on how much they fund for (kids in) poverty … so that’s a political decision that can be very contentious.” Once the weights are determined, it’s important, Hanushek said, to ensure that districts have flexibility to spend their money where they need to, as long as there’s an accountability system in place. EdBuild has

cal taxpayers to foot the bill to keep their schools going through ad-valorem taxes, Bryan said. “If we’re going to have a weighted formula and more money for this group ... or that group, if the total dollar amount of this formula is less than the total dollar amount of the existing law, then you don’t got no additional money for these items,” Bryan said. “The total dollar amount has got to go up unless you’re up to something.” EdBuild’s recommendations lessen the state’s burden for funding its public schools, which Bryan says was a purposeful choice in 1997 when MAEP was formed. “One of the things we wanted to do … was help take the pressure off the ad-valorem taxpayers. One of the reasons we had the cap and the 28-mill contribution (rule) is … protection for ad-valorem taxpayers so that taxes on their farms, homes and cars did not go up, so the state would fund more of the education funding formula and not raise the sales tax,” Sen. Bryan said. EdBuild recommends that the state eliminate its “27% rule,” which “prescribes

that no local district will pay for more than 27% of the minimum calculated cost of public education,” the EdBuild report says. Mississippi supports its public schools at a higher percentage than most states, and that rule forces the state to make up for funding dollars in local districts that cannot afford to leverage enough ad valorem (property tax) on their communities to pull their full weight. EdBuild’s recommendations keep the State on the hook for funding up to 28 mills like in MAEP, but the need to go the extra mile would be eliminated if the Legislature heeds EdBuild’s recommendations. EdBuild’s School-Choice Roots So far, the formula revamp has been anything but transparent—for Democratic lawmakers at least. At the Jan. 17 hearing, no Democratic lawmakers reported that they had been invited to any EdBuild meetings, unless representatives from EdBuild were visiting a school in their district. “The notion that the existing formula is not transparent but that presentation the other day was transparent or that this new formula would be transparent is another example of the bizarre misuse of the term ‘transparent,’” Bryan said. “I tell you George Orwell on LSD would blush at the way they’re using the word transparent.” Funding for EdBuild’s $250,000 contract with the Mississippi Legislature has also faced criticism after pressure from multiple media outlets finally forced lawmakers to release the contract, revealing that the Legislature only paid $125,000, while private funding from unnamed EdBuild donors covered the rest of the study’s costs. These donors represent private interests in education funding and policy groups from across the political spectrum. EdBuild receives funding from several foundations, like the Walton Foundation (Walmart founders), the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (Microsoft founders) and partners with groups like the CityBridge Foundation, which invests in public or charter schools in Washington, D.C.. EdBuild is in its infancy as a company (it started in 2014), and Sibilia came from an education-policy background, first working in the Washington, D.C., education department and then moving to the nonprofit Students First, run by Michelle Rhee. The former chancellor of Washington, D.C., public schools, Rhee was a controversial figure, after firing over 200 teachers in D.C., mainly due to poor performance, she said then. The move caused a massive resistance from teacher unions, leading to her resignation later that year. Rhee then started Students First, an education-reform lobbying

TALK | education group that donated hefty amounts of money to school-board elections as well as Republican lawmakers, Slate reported. The nonprofit dedicated its policy efforts to school choice, a movement that is strong in Mississippi with backing from the lieutenant governor and the governor himself. Sibilia left in 2014 to start EdBuild, and Students First dissolved into 50CAN, a similar education advocacy group, The Los Angeles Times reported. A Path to More Charters? Weighted student funding is not just a popular idea among conservative political groups. One of the largest liberal think tanks in Washington, D.C., the Center for American Progress, is also listed as one of EdBuild’s donors. The center along with several other organizations co-signed onto a 2006 study promoting weighted student funding. The Fordham Institute, which defines its mission as “promot(ing) educational excellence for every child in America via quality research, analysis, and commentary, as well as advocacy and charter school authorizing in Ohio,”produced the report. Parts of that report show that weighted student funding integrates well with charter-school expansion.

“In a fully developed WSF system— with public school choice and a genuine labor market for teachers—both districts and schools could be more flexible, efficient, and effective. There are two specific types of choice options that need to be considered: charters and other alternatives that are part of districts, and public schools of choice

‘(Weighted student funding) enables both choice funding and traditional school funding.’ that are independent of districts,” the 2006 report says. “If a charter school (or other school option) operates as part of a district, the solution is simple: it should get the same weighted student amount as other district schools. The district should withhold for oversight and accountability the same

amount from these schools as from all other district schools, and money for all services should be provided to these schools.” Rod Paige, former secretary of education in the U.S. known for his support of vouchers and for implementing the controversial “No Child Left Behind” law, was one of the co-signers on the 2006 report. Gov. Phil Bryant appointed him as the current interim president of Jackson State University last fall. Conservative groups like Jeb Bush’s Foundation for Excellence in Education and the libertarian think tank, the Reason Foundation, are proponents of weighted student funding because of their easy transition into school choice. Sibilia said that groups from both ends of the political spectrum agree on weighted student funding. “It provides for flexibility and accountability; it’s an easy way to distribute; it’s not an overly partisan proposal, and what I think folks did is jump to conclusions, frankly, because it’s my background,” Sibilia told the Jackson Free Press. “What I would say just to be succinct about this is (weighted student funding) enables both choice funding and traditional school funding. There would be no difference, or no change in terms of how the


funding would be handled at the state level, but what’s really important is that the funding stream in and of itself does not expand school choice or vouchers—that’s a separate decision that’s made by the Legislature.” It is no secret that Mississippi leaders are interested in expanding school choice. Ahead of Senate confirmation hearings, Gov. Phil Bryant and Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves both sent letters in support of the controversial nominee for secretary of education, Betsy DeVos, who has pushed for schoolchoice options for decades including charter schools and vouchers. In Mississippi, Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves has pushed for public charter-school expansion in the state and attended the grand opening of ReImagine Prep in Jackson in 2015. The deadline for bills to come out of committee is Jan. 31, so lawmakers are under the gun to work through EdBuild’s recommendations if they plan to make any changes this legislative session. What lawmakers choose to prioritize in terms of weights—and how that will affect school districts and the students they serve—remains to be seen. Email state reporter Arielle Dreher at arielle@jacksonfreepress.com.






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January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms



Your Guide to Jackson


ave you ever noticed that the older you get, the easier it is to stay in your rut? The rut isn’t a terrible place. It’s predictable. You know everyone there. You know how things are going to turn out. Your rut is also known as your comfort zone. There are no surprises here, you have a routine, and that’s OK, right? Well … no. Every once in a while, you may get this nagging feeling in the back of your mind, this little voice that says: “Can’t we do something different this weekend?” The answer is yes, and here’s how you’re going to do it. I want you to pretend that you just moved to town. You know no one. You don’t know where to take your dry cleaning or where to get the best glass of wine. You have a blank slate with Jackson, and you have permission to try new things. During my time on Earth, I’ve lived in six different states and another country. Before I move to a new place, people often ask me: “Do you know anyone who lives there?” My answer is always: “Not yet.” For some people, that’s frightening. For me, it’s invigorating. Each time I move to a new city, I get to be an explorer. I try new things. I take different routes around town and discover new places. But I don’t do this blindly. I research. When I moved to Jackson the first time, I Googled “best restaurant” and “best nail salon”—and the results that popped up came from the Jackson Free Press. I also came across an out-of-the-way Italian restaurant that had freshmade pasta. I found the place with a flourless chocolate torte that remains my favorite dessert to this day. I discovered the hole-in-the-wall taco joint where service was slow, but worth it. It gave me a road map, a guidebook. It was a place to start learning about my new city and became a checklist of things to try that weren’t the traditional “chain” restaurants and stores. These are places I never would have found just driving around on my own. And it led me to people I probably wouldn’t have met. Over the years, I have learned that many of my friends and co-workers grew up here. They went to school in Mississippi and returned to the Jackson area. They live close to their parents and have known many of their friends since elementary school. While it’s wonderful to have such longtime relationships, it can also keep you in your comfort zone/rut. You see the same group of people all the time. You do the same things every weekend. It’s easy. It’s comfortable. But it gets old. “There’s nothing to do around here,” they whine, while sitting at home binge-watching Netflix. “We see the same people every time,” they bemoan, while never leaving Fondren. “Madison (or Flowood or Brandon) is too far to go,” they complain, while driving to Oxford or Starkville to tailgate. It’s time to change your perspective. It’s time to become an explorer of your home. See it with fresh eyes. Go to the places you only go when out-of-town guests come to visit. Set aside a Saturday and be a tourist for a day. Learn about the history of our city. Experience new sights, sounds and tastes. You may not love all of it, but you might find things you really like. Let this Best of Jackson issue be your guide. My challenge to you: Each week, check out or try one new category on the list. By this time next year, you’ll not only have a better idea of what’s going on in our city, but I bet you’ll also have added some new friends. Dawn Dugle is a Jacksonian by choice, twice. She is the CEO of Dugle Media, a business storytelling company.. 12 January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

It’s time to become an explorer.

Legislators, Get the City’s Infrastructure Bill Right


he City of Jackson gets another chance at an infrastructure revitalization bill this session, but the additions that led to the death of last year’s Capitol Complex bill hang heavy over new attempts to garner Jackson a little more tax money to repair its crumbling roadways. Last session, the legislation was set to add $21 million to the capital city’s infrastructure efforts with approval by a commission of appointees state and local leaders would choose. In the last hours of the legislative session in conference between the Mississippi House of Representatives and the Senate, lawmakers added provisions to the Capitol Complex Bill that defunded the bill and added a new judicial appointment to the Capitol Complex District. The bill died, but Sen. David Blount and the rest of Jackson delegation have introduced a new plan, SB 2891, with some tweaks set to appease the Republican supermajority. The biggest change for the new version of the Capitol Complex Bill, called the State Capital Infrastructure Fund, is that the state Department of Finance and Administration will hold the reins for the program. Blount says the almost $24 million that he expects the fund to accumulate annually will be concentrated on roadways that access state buildings, offsetting the cost that Jackson incurs as host to the state government. The governor would appoint the DFA executive director, giving him direct control over the program implementation. The DFA executive director would head an 11-person committee comprised of appointees,

some from the city, some from local interests and four from the leaders of the state government. The plan from the committee would then move to the Jackson City Council for approval, with renewal at least every five years. Blount said he believes handing control of the program to the governor is a fair exchange for the influx of cash that the city desperately needs, predicting that Gov. Bryant is simply going to fix Capitol Street. Which would be fine, great, wonderful, but only if the bill comes through the legislative process relatively free of more authoritative chains thrown about it at the last minute, like lawmakers tried last year at the last hour, thus killing the bill. But while on the subject of chains, what’s with all the commissions and committees holding the strings that lead to the new sources of money? When will the state Legislature embrace conservative local-control principles and let Jackson determine for itself where to spend its money? If the state wants to have a more inviting and attractive Jackson, the best way forward is being cooperative, inclusive and, most of all, trusting. Checks and balances are fine, but the desire for absolute control hurts the capital city and, thus, the entire state. Of course, if lawmakers are willing to extend the olive branch, it is up to Jackson to follow through with both cooperation and high-quality execution, all in an effort to turn back the ongoing narrative of “us vs. them” and “State vs. Jackson.” Besides, potholes don’t pick which cars to destroy. Let’s fix this.

Email letters and opinion to letters@jacksonfreepress.com, fax to 601-510-9019 or mail to 125 South Congress St., Suite 1324, Jackson, Mississippi 39201. Include daytime phone number. Letters may be edited for length and clarity, as well as factchecked.

Lori Gregory

EDITORIAL Managing Editor Amber Helsel Reporters Arielle Dreher,Tim Summers Jr. JFP Daily Editor Dustin Cardon Music Editor Micah Smith Events Listings Editor Tyler Edwards Writers Richard Coupe, Bryan Flynn, Shelby Scott Harris, Sierra Mannie, Mike McDonald, Greg Pigott, Julie Skipper Consulting Editor JoAnne Prichard Morris ART AND PHOTOGRAPHY Art Director Kristin Brenemen Advertising Designer Zilpha Young Staff Photographer Imani Khayyam ADVERTISING SALES Sales and Marketing Consultants Myron Cathey, Roberta Wilkerson Sales Assistant Mary Osborne BUSINESS AND OPERATIONS Distribution Manager Richard Laswell Distribution Raymond Carmeans, Clint Dear, Michael McDonald, Ruby Parks Assistant to the CEO Inga-Lill Sjostrom Operations Consultant David Joseph ONLINE Web Editor Dustin Cardon Web Designer Montroe Headd CONTACT US: Letters letters@jacksonfreepress.com Editorial editor@jacksonfreepress.com Queries submissions@jacksonfreepress.com Listings events@jacksonfreepress.com Advertising ads@jacksonfreepress.com Publisher todd@jacksonfreepress.com News tips news@jacksonfreepress.com Fashion style@jacksonfreepress.com Jackson Free Press 125 South Congress Street, Suite 1324 Jackson, Mississippi 39201 Editorial (601) 362-6121 Sales (601) 362-6121 Fax (601) 510-9019 Daily updates at jacksonfreepress.com

The Jackson Free Press is the city’s awardwinning, locally owned newsweekly, reaching over 35,000 readers per week via more than 600 distribution locations in the Jackson metro area—and an average of over 35,000 visitors per week at www.jacksonfreepress.com. The Jackson Free Press is free for pick-up by readers; one copy per person, please. First-class subscriptions are available for $100 per year for postage and handling. The Jackson Free Press welcomes thoughtful opinions. The views expressed in this newspaper are not necessarily those of the publisher or management of Jackson Free Press Inc. © Copyright 2017 Jackson Free Press Inc. All Rights Reserved

Jackson: Room to Be the Best


hen I was 5 years old, my grandmother taught me to play poker. She always started by pulling out an old cleaned-out Betty Crocker icing container, now filled with pennies and nickels. She then dealt the cards and played with no mercy. Man, woman or child could go down to her three of a kind, and she cared not if you cried. A grandchild did not “beat” Mamaw at poker, gin rummy or Scrabble without earning that win. And it took me years to finally beat her in all three. Scrabble didn’t happen until college. But she put a spirit in us of persistence. She taught us that in order to win, we had to deserve it, and that often took practice, mistakes and learning. Mamaw gave no participation trophy. I moved to Jackson around 15 years ago from the Delta. At first I thought it was huge city. How little I knew then. But, the fear that I felt about walking into a completely new city—separate from anyone I knew—was very real. The first year I remember just trying to learn the interstate and the fact that I didn’t have to pass tractors on a two-lane. Now I drive like I’ve never seen a two-lane, and I’ve developed a healthy case of road rage at Mississippians who think onramps are for racing, and turn signals are gentle suggestions. But I digress. After two years, I made a few friends, started graduate school and became enamored with a little paper called the Planet Weekly. It was an alternative that focused on arts and music and writing and was the first kind I’d ever seen like that. Then the Jackson Free Press showed up. I loved both of them for what they meant to me. It meant that other people like me existed in this state. I wasn’t actually sure of that growing up when my thoughts leaned left of center. I blame this on MTV finally being available on cable when I was 13. It corrupted all of us greatly, just like the Baptist preachers said it would. Concepts and systems with which I did not agree still often surrounded me. That struggle is real for a lot of progressive Mississippi kids. The search for our place among our home. We want

it, badly. We want to feel a part of this place that somehow stays a little magical for us, even as it often punches us in the gut. It was finding my tribe. I remember winning second place in Best of Jackson for column writing back then. Orley Hood, may he rest in peace, was an institution who could not be beat. To a girl who literally grew up on the edge of a cotton field, that Almost Award for best is still the one I remember. It was the only one that mattered. It meant that I came here, found something that I loved and then kept trying to do it to the best of my ability. It also meant that other people noticed. That is what being “The Best” is about, right? It is finding what you love, doing it in the best way that you know how and other people noticing. Very quickly, I met and became friends with other community leaders—other people just trying to do their best. Ten years later, some of those people are still my closest friends. In fact, it is strange to think that I did not grow up here because I feel my family is here. A family that I cobbled together from like-minded people. People who pushed me to find myself. People who believed in me. See, you never really do it on your own. Someone usually teaches you, supports you and then gives you no mercy when you cry. Then they tell you to get up and try again. That is what it takes. One thing I tell people is that in Jackson, there is still always room to be the best. I never fail to be surprised by the colorful genius that permeates this town at times. The people who work tirelessly and never ask for gratitude even though they are part of the backbone of this community. I’ve learned some of my best lessons from them. And they all echo Mamaw’s advice. Work hard. Be persistent. Do better the next time if you mess up. Don’t cry if you lose. And don’t just participate. In this town, there is still room to not only know the best but to become it if you choose. Lori Gregory is a social worker from Greenville, Miss. She lives in Fondren with two ruined rescues and a 7-year-old daughter who terrorizes her.

Get up and try again.


Listings for Fri. 1/27 – Thur. 2/2/17 A Dog’s Purpose PG Resident Evil: The Final Chapter R Gold


Monster Trucks PG The Bye Bye Man PG13

Moana (Sing-A-Long) PG

Hidden Figures PG Lion


xXx: Return of Xander Cage PG13






The Founder PG13 The Resurrection of Gavin Stone PG Patriot’s Day




La La Land PG13 PG

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story PG13 Manchester By the Sea R

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1002 Treetops Blvd • Flowood Behind the Applebee’s on Lakeland


January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Editor-in-Chief Donna Ladd Publisher Todd Stauffer Associate Publisher Kimberly Griffin



January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

T Best ohanks for f Jac kson the Votes !

In 2017,

Local Products and Gifts

Party Trays Available for Order (call ahead)

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MAYWOOD MART 1220 E. Northside Dr. • 601-366-5676 www.mcdadeswineandspirits.com Please Drink Responsibly

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Shopping Center Fondren 601-366-5273


1 5 th A n n u a l

Best of Jackson Best Barista: Ben Ford

Best Bartender: Chareese Kent

Deep South Pops, 1800 N. State St., 601-398-2174; 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 173, 601-398-0623; deepsouthpops.com

—Alexis Ware

Finalists: Caitlin McNally (Sneaky Beans, 2914 N. State St., 601-487-6349, sneakybeans. com) / Cody Cox (Cups Espresso Café Fondren, 2757 Old Canton Road, 601-362-7422, cupsespressocafe.com) / Marti Stoulig (Cups Espresso Café Fondren, 2757 Old Canton Road, 601-362-7422, cupsespressocafe.com) / Salar Almakky (Sneaky Beans, 2914 N. State St., 601487-6349, sneakybeans.com)

When Chareese Kent began working at Babalu in 2014, her goal wasn’t initially to become a bartender. “I really wanted to become a server because Babalu is just such a popular place,” she says. “I love the atmosphere, I loved all the good vibes, and I wanted to get out of the arena of just standing at the door. I wanted to be in the mix of our social environment at the restaurant.” Kent started off as hostess but asked her then-manager, Nathan Delaware, who is now the general manager at Table 100, what it would take to become a server. He told her that if he showed her that she could be the best hostess she could be, he would talk to her about becoming a server. Three months later, Kent started serving and four months after that, she started bartending. She says a whiskey smash is one of her favorite drinks to make. “I love whiskey because everyone is scared of whiskey,” she says. “If you can make whiskey taste good … I feel like I’ve got them sold.” —Amber Helsel Finalists: Jamie Moss (Fenian’s Pub, 901 E. Fortification St., 601-948-0055, fenianspub. com) / Jimmy Quinn (Hal & Mal’s, 200 S. Commerce St., 601-948-0888, halandmals. com) / Simon Kazery (Ole Tavern on George Street, 416 George St., 601-960-2700) / Trevor Palmer (Pop’s Saloon, 2636 S. Gallatin St., 601-961-4747)

Best Chef: Alex Eaton

Best Facialist/Esthetician: Emily Miraglia

Finalists: Dan Blumenthal (BRAVO! Italian Restaurant & Bar, 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 244, 601-9828111, bravobuzz.com) / Derek Emerson (Walker’s Drive In, 3016 N. State St., 601-982-2633, walkersdrivein.com; CAET Wine Bar, 3100 N. State St., Suite 102, 601-321-9169, caetwinebar.com; Local 463 Urban Kitchen, 1000 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 5002, Ridgeland, 601-707-7684, local463.com) / Jesse Houston (previously Saltine Oyster Bar, 622 Duling Ave., Suite 201, 601-982-2899) / Nick Wallace (Mississippi Museum of Art, The Palette Café, 380 S. Lamar St., 601-960-1515, msmuseumart.org)

AQUA The Day Spa, 1000 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 8001, Ridgeland, 601-898-9123, aquathedayspa.com

Having healthy skin can do wonders for your wellness and selfesteem, and having a good facialist or esthetician can be helpful. This year’s Best Facialist/Esthetician, Emily Miraglia, has been an esthetician for almost three years. “I enjoy helping people relax and with their skin. I’m truly passionate about helping people,” Miraglia says. When Miraglia was working for skin-care and cosmetics company Clinique at the age of 19, she says she fell in love with helping people with their skin-care needs. Initially, she completed a pre-veterinarian program but decided to follow her heart and pursue esthetics at the Mississippi Institute for Aesthetics, Nails and Cosmetology. She has worked at AQUA The Day Spa for more than a year. When she’s not pampering customers, she says she is at the gym or taking on do-it-yourself projects. —LaShanda Phillips Finalists: Carrie Cooper (Blackledge Face Center, 1659 Lelia Drive, 601-981-3033, blackledgefacecenter.com) / Deborah Ballou (Blackledge Face Center, 1659 Lelia Drive, 601-981-3033, blackledgefacecenter.com) / Jamie Jordan (Blackledge Face Center, 1659 Lelia Drive, 601-981-3033, blackledgefacecenter.com) / Kristin Bomar (Cole Facial Clinic, 1030 N. Flowood Drive, Suite A, Flowood, 601-933-2004, colefacialclinic.com) / Leta Collins (Faces PLLC, 1111 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite G, Ridgeland, 601-607-3033, facesdr.com)

Imani Khayyam

In August 2016, Alex Eaton told the Jackson Free Press that after helping open a pizzeria in Boulder, Colo., he knew he wanted to be a chef. He attended a culinary program at Johnson and Wales University in North Carolina, receiving his associate’s degree in culinary arts in 2009. After college, he toured the U.S. to hone his craft, and in 2013, he and Steven O’Neill opened The Manship in Belhaven. As the restaurant’s co-owner and executive chef, he creates a menu with Mediterranean and southern inspirations with dishes such as spit-fired Greek-style chicken. Over the last year, Eaton has also been making his mark in the culinary world in the South. He competed in and won the Great American Seafood Cook-Off, which was in New Orleans this past August, with a trio of dishes that highlighted the different types of shrimp in the Gulf of Mexico. At the restaurant, he says his favorite thing to do is break down a whole fish and use every part of it to create a dish or multiple dishes. On being honored in Best of Jackson, Eaton says: “You do a lot of hard work; it’s obviously not for pay. For people to recognize that, it’s truly an honor.” — Amber Helsel

Imani Khayyam

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen, 1200 N. State St., Suite 100, 601-398-4562, themanshipjackson.com


Imani Khayyam

courtesy Ben Ford

For Ben Ford, his job as a barista at Deep South Pops is more than just making a good cup a coffee. Each exchange is a moment for him to share his love of coffee and interact with members of the community. He is among the original employees of Deep South Pops since its first store opened nearly two years ago, and he has forged relationships with many of the customers through that time. “The culture of working there is fun and enjoyable,” Ford says of his job. When Ford isn’t working as a barista, he writes and sings Christian music. His faith is where the two jobs intertwine. “I just want to do my job well and love people well and have good conversation with them and point people to the Lord in what I do,” Ford says.

Babalu Tapas & Tacos, 622 Duling Ave., Suite 106, 601-366-5757, eatbabalu.com

1 5 th A n n u a l

Are you a finalist? Didn’t get your party invitation? Email mary@jacksonfreepress.com or call 601-362-6121 x25

Best of Jackson Best Nail Technician: Kim Nguyen

Best Makeup Artist: Christine Cody

Best Hair Stylist: Emily Blocker

So you’ve finally decided on the perfect nail design you want to rock in the new year, but you don’t know who can bring your idea to life. Because there are so many nail technicians in Jackson, it can be hard to choose. This year’s winner for Best Nail Technician, Kim Nguyen, isn’t a novice when it comes to nails. Nguyen has been a nail technician for 15 years. She attended the Academy of Hair Design and received her license in February 2004. Her favorite services to provide are manicures and pedicures. “I love working in Jackson and helping people with their nail care,” Nguyen says. Le Nails has been in business for 20 years in the same location. The shop offers a variety of services, including deluxe pedicures, among others. —LaShanda Phillips

While studying art at Mississippi College, Christine Cody realized that she preferred painting on faces rather than canvases, so she decided to pursue makeup as a career. Fifteen years later, Cody says she is still very passionate about her craft. “There is something special about helping people with the their beauty needs,” the Clinton native says. Cody is currently an independent makeup artist for Limelight by Alcone, an online cosmetics company. She has worked with MAC Cosmetics for eight years, and has done makeup artistry for weddings and proms, publications such as Premier Bride magazine, and Richard Schwartz & Associates commercials. Cody enjoys spending time with her 9-year-old daughter, Serena. —LaShanda Phillips

For the second year in a row, Jackson has voted Emily Blocker as Best Hair Stylist. A barber at Fondren Barber Shop, Blocker continues to transform men’s hair into works of art. The Utica, Miss., native can do men’s haircuts, straight-razor neck shaves and beard trims, and she now services little girls under the age of 12. Blocker says she knew she wanted to style men’s hair when she would cut her family’s and friends’ hair in high school. This motivated her to get a barbering degree from Hinds Community College in 2012. She has been with the Fondren Barber Shop since it opened in 2013. “My favorite thing about what I do is seeing how happy people are whenever I’m done,” she says. —LaShanda Phillips

Finalists: Adrienne Williams (Fondren Nails, 2906 N. State St., Suite B1, 601-362-6292) / Keri Hemba (Keri the RED Designs, 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 245, 601-331-1563, kerithered.com) / Victoria Walker (Cuticles Nail Studio, 2947 Old Canton Road, 601-366-6999)

Finalists: Amy Head (Amy Head Cosmetics, 120 W. Jackson St., Suite B, Ridgeland, 601-853-3098) / April Epps (Beauty Tips by A. Renee’ Makeup Artistry) / Hannah Burt (Static A Salon, 219 Garden Park Drive, Suite 200A, Madison, 601853-0054) / Tracy Branch (Tracy Branch Agency,) / Waylon Garrett (Maison Weiss, 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 109, 601-981-4621)

Fondren Barber Shop, 2943 Old Canton Road, 601-826-0707

Makeup by Cody LLC

Imani Khayyam

courtesy Christine Cody

Imani Khayyam

Best Fitness Trainer: Paul Lacoste

Finalists Bethany Allen (Barnette’s, 4465 Interstate 55 N., Suite 201, 769-230-4648, barnettessalon.com) / Brooke Quick (James Jacobs Salon, 100 N. Bierdeman Road, Pearl, 601-939-1979) / Lindsay Cash (Vamp the Salon, 151 E. Metro Pkwy., Flowood, 601-955-9368) / Nikki Henry (RITZ SALON, 574 Highway 51 N., Suite H, Ridgeland, 601-8564330) / Tiffany Jacobs (Studio J Salon, 151 E. Metro Pkwy., Flowood, 601-212-9130)

Best Massage Therapist: Tiffany Melton

A former professional football player, Jackson-based fitness trainer Paul Lacoste began his work in fitness training by teaching speed training camps for youth and pro athletes during his junior and senior year of college. He says he knew early on that his calling was to be a fitness coach. “I love coaching,” Lacoste says, “[A]nd I don’t think God made me to do anything else.” Lacoste, who was a linebacker at Mississippi State University from 1993-1997, was named All-SEC and All-America in 1996. In 1998, he signed with the British Columbia Lions of the Canadian Football League. CFL named him Rookie of the Year in 1999. He moved his business, Paul Lacoste Sports, to Jackson in 2003. Each year, Lacoste runs multiple programs throughout the state, putting his more than 20 years of fitness experience to good use. Lacoste believes his job is important in fighting against the high levels of obesity that plague Mississippi. “We have to hold each other accountable,” he says. “We have to exercise.” —LaShanda Phillips

When Tiffany Melton was younger, she had back issues, and doctors couldn’t seem to help her. She says that made her want to become a massage therapist. The Jackson native went to school at Mississippi School of Therapeutic Massage. She graduated in 2011 and then took her state exam and the national Massage and Bodywork Licensing examination. She began working at Warehouse Gym & Massage a little more than a year ago. As part of her licensing, Melton says she also teaches continuing education, so she gives reiki instruction out of her office at Warehouse. She says the Japanese-based treatment focuses on balancing the body’s energy channels and chakras. “It’s really relaxing, it’s very meditative like, it’s very quiet,” she says. “ … The belief system with that in Eastern medicine is that if your energy channels are aligned, then that promotes much better health, even if you have high blood pressure, diabetes, or cancer, even.” Melton says she likes traditional massage and reiki for different reasons, though it depends on what her clients want. She does massage therapy by appointment only. —Amber Helsel

Finalists: Brittany Horton (The Club at Township, 340 Township Ave., Ridgeland, 601856-0668; The Club 24, 5352 Lakeland Drive, Flowood, 601-658-9559) / Jarrett Becks (No Limit Combatives, 145 Albertsons Drive, Suite A, Flowood, 601-941-4173) Jon Marc Franklin (Snap Fitness, multiple locations) / Leslie Johnson (Hinds Community College Raymond Campus, hindscc.edu) / Misti Garner (Get Fit with Misti, 123 Old Fannin Road, Flowood, 601-504-3601getfitwithmisti.com)

Imani Khayyam

Warehouse Gym & Massage, 4435 Mangum Drive, Suite B, Flowood, 601-664-7071

File Photo / Tate K Nations

Paul Lacoste Sports, 601-398-0950, paullacoste.com

Finalists: Adrienne Anthony (Holistic Massage, 2084 Dunbarton Drive, Suite C, 601-896-6022) / Jermaine Sims (Massage Envy, 149 Market St., Flowood, 601-709-3689) / Martha Howell Hooey (Baptist Healthplex-Jackson, 717 Manship St., 601-968-1766; Baptist Healthplex-Clinton, 102 Clinton Pkwy., Clinton, 601-925-7900, mbhs.org) / Matthew Haynes (Blue Skyz Still Waters Massage Therapy, 4460 Highway 80 W., 601-383-4747)

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Le Nails, 1220 E. Northside Drive, Suite 390, 601-366-3069


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Are you a finalist? Didn’t get your party invitation? Email mary@jacksonfreepress.com or call 601-362-6121 x25

Best of Jackson Best Photographer: Sharon Coker

Best New Chef: Chaz Lindsay

Sharon Coker’s career as a photographer began nine years ago when she booked her first wedding. Since then, the Flowood native has made Jackson the place for her business. “My style of work is a little bit different than most photographers in our area, so I feel like the people in Jackson embrace it more than the people in Rankin County,” Coker says. “Jackson is art-centric.” Most of the work Coker does are portraits. She calls her art “free, colorful and a way to tell a story about the person.” She works primarily with local models but also does professional style shoots for people’s personal use. “When you take photos with a camera, normally everyone is cheesing, smiling, but for some reason when I get them in front of my camera, I can make them open up and show something they wouldn’t normally show people,” Coker says. Whether for modeling agencies or simply more artistic portraits, Coker believes there’s an opening in the Jackson area that she works to fill with her photography. —Alexis Ware

Table 100 sous chef Chaz Lindsay says starting to work in professional restaurants at age 15 has given him an eye for what works and what does not work in the kitchen. “It’s really important to bring people up instead of bring them down,” Lindsay says. “I worked with one chef who practiced the former, and it changed everything for me.” His parents wanted him to attend business school, so he enrolled at the University of Southern Mississippi. However, he says he wanted to cook. “No matter what I do, cooking is something that I always come back to,” he says. “You’ve got to have that passion because the pressure in this industry can be intense, and the financial incentive is minimal.” Lindsay started studying at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y., in 2009, and received his associate’s degree in culinary arts in 2011. After working in the kitchens of restaurants such as Eleven Madison Park and Tom Colicchio’s Craft in New York City, he decided to come back home. He became the sous chef at Table 100 in November 2016. Linday says he is excited to be involved in the burgeoning culinary landscape in Jackson and hopes to one day open his own restaurant. —Mike McDonald

Finalists: Charlotte Stringer (Charlotte Stringer Photography, 1310 S. Jackson Road, Terry, 601209-7267, charlottestringerphotography.com) / Chuckway Washington (FulloFlava, 601-2382762, fulloflava.com) / Jeff Chao (Chao Photography, 236 Bellechase Drive, Clinton, 601-6680875, chaophotography.com) / Robby Followell (followell | fotography, 118 Heights Drive, Clinton, 601-488-4423, followellfotography.com) / Tommy Kirkpatrick (tommykirkpatrick.com)

Best Server/Waitperson: Michelle Corban

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms


Finalists: Janis Boersma (Local 463 Urban Kitchen, 1000 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 5002, Ridgeland, 601-707-7684, local463.com) / Joseph Jordan (Lou’s Full-Serv, 904B E. Fortification St., 601-4876359, lousfullserv.com) / MarQuita Tate (Char Restaurant, 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 142, 601-956-9562, charrestaurant.com) / Ryne Morrow (Fenian’s Pub, 901 E. Fortification St., 601-9480055, fenianspub.com)

Best Dressed: Amanda Powell

Spaciest Jacksonian: Felder Rushing

Amanda Powell never set out to be the one of the best-dressed people in Jackson, but she says that is exactly how those closest to her see her. As owner of Plush Salon in Flowood, dressing well comes with the job. “Hair always changes, and so does fashion. Every season is different with hair just like clothes,” Powell says, “so I like to do my research all the time try to find what the new and upcoming stuff is.” Powell describes her style as boho and freespirited. Some of her favorite shops are Libby Story and Anthropologie, but she says what makes her style unique is that she often tries to match things she already owns in new ways. “I try to step outside the box just a little and add certain things that people wouldn’t think to add or things that people wouldn’t think matched but actually do,” Powell says. Even without the compliments from people, Powell says fashion is fun. —Alexis Ware

Felder Rushing, this year’s Spaciest Jacksonian winner, says that all of his personality, attitude and air serve to connect people to the plants around them, whether he is driving around in his truck with its bed overflowing with plants and soil, talking with callers during his popular statewide horticulture radio show, “The Gestalt Gardener,” or lecturing around the world. “It’s not about gardening; it’s about people getting along, and gardening is the one thing that we all share,” Rushing says. “Plants don’t care who you voted for.” He says he continues to live in Jackson both for the familiarity and roots he has here, but also because the community here is accepting, perhaps especially so of the more eccentric local personality. “It’s real easy to fit in here because there are a lot of quirky people here, and quirky people are accepted,” Rushing says. “Hold your head up, warts and all. Worst thing they can do is talk about you. Little town like this, they are going to talk about you anyway.” —Tim Summers Jr.

Finalists: Brooke Quick / Connie McCullough Brown / Nikki Henry / Paige Adoue / Tiffany Jefferson

Imani Khayyam

Imani Khayyam

Michelle Corban, who is a server and bartender at Biaggi’s Ristorante Italiano in Ridgeland, has been with the restaurant for five years. “The people here are like family now,” Corban says. “I take care of our regulars, and they take care of me. They’re what’s kept me here all this time, on top of our food. My husband, James, and I come in (every couple of weeks) for the bruschetta ... and he’s also a big fan of the pizza.” Corban says she believes her commitment to getting to know all of her customers is what got them to name her for an award. “I’m pretty outgoing with a big personality, and the regulars love talking to me,” Corban says. “I know the menu front and back and am always there with answers, helping people who might be gluten- or cheese-intolerant and helping customers put a meal together that fits their needs and tastes great, too. Part of being a good server is being able to read people.” —Dustin Cardon

Finalists: Andrew Lee (Catering by Andrew, 5750 Interstate 55 S., Suite 110, 601-351-5389, cateringbyandrewlee.com) / Christian Rodriguez (Babalu Tapas & Tacos, 622 Duling Ave., Suite 106, 601-366-5757, eatbabalu.com) / Jordan Holley (The Apothecary at Brent’s Drugs, 655 Duling Ave., apothecaryjackson.com)

Imani Khayyam

Biaggi’s Ristorante Italiano, 970 Highland Colony Pkwy., 601-354-6600, biaggis.com

courtesy Chaz Lindsay

Table 100, 100 Ridge Way, Flowood, 601-420-4202, tableonehundred.com

courtesy Sharon Coker

Sharon Coker Photography, 300 W. South St., 601-398-1345, sharoncoker.com

Finalists: daniel johnson / Graham / Mary Sanders Ferriss / Patrick Jerome


We appreciate your votes and support Thank you for nominating us for Best Thai Restaurant HAPPY HOUR

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3000 Old Canton Road, Suite 105, Jackson | (601)981-3205 Like us on Facebook! www.surinofthailand.com

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Best of Jackson Best Urban Warrior: Jeff Good

Finalists: Ellen Langford (Paintings by Ellen Langford, 615 E. Court St., 601-316-2944) / Eli Childers (facebook.com/ chiseledheart) / Justin Ransburg (ransburg.storenvy.com) / Michele Campbell (colorwheeler@hotmail.com) / William Goodman (enhancedmixture.net)


Wyatt Waters likes to paint on location. “I like ... the immediacy of being there. I like the one-on-one that you get that we don’t always get in a digital world,” he says. “... I just am a curious looker. I grew up looking at things, and I drew as a response to that.” The Best Visual Artist winner, who has won the award many times over the years, has had his work featured in publications such as Art & Antiques, American Artist, Watercolor and Delta magazines. His work has also been exhibited in the Mississippi Museum of Art, the Lauren Rodgers Museum of Art in Laurel and the Jackson Municipal Gallery. He has also collaborated with Hattiesburg chef Robert St. John on books including “A Southern Palate” and “An Italian Palate.” —Amber Helsel

Marshall Ramsey can’t walk through too many local places these days without being recognized. A long-time editorial cartoonist for The Clarion-Ledger, he is also a popular author, public speaker, teacher, and radio and TV host. “If there was anything I wish I was better at, it would be time management,” Ramsey says. Ramsey also has a robust social-media presence and regularly interacts with his fans online. But he says one of his favorite things is when he can make a crowd laugh during a public-speaking engagement. This is Ramsey’s first Best of Jackson win. “I’m very honored people would consider voting for me,” Ramsey says of being a Best of Jackson finalist. “Mississippi and Jackson have given me an awful lot over the last 20 years. I’m grateful to do what I do.” —Dawn Dugle



Finalists: Brad “Kamikaze” Franklin / Bridget Archer / Phillip Rollins / Ron Chane

Best Public Figure: Marshall Ramsey

Wyatt Waters Gallery, 307 Jefferson St., Clinton, 601-925-8115 IMANI KHAYYAM

Jeff Good, who is the co-owner of Mangia Bene and Soul City Hospitality, walks the walk and talks the talk of doing the right thing every day in Jackson, even when a water-main break disrupts business at one of his restaurants. He is a tireless champion of the city. He is a graduate of Leadership Jackson, has been on boards such as Vision 2022 and Millsaps College’s Else School of Management, ,and has vocally supported initiatives such as the 1-percent sales tax. “We need to build a vibrant community where people want to live, then the tax-base increases, and we can fix the infrastructure problems,” Good says. His straight talk is mixed with an infectious positive energy that resonates with many people in the area. “I’ve been very fortunate,” he says. “I want to give back to this community.” —Dawn Dugle

Best Visual Artist: Wyatt Waters

Finalists: Jeff Good / Melvin Priester Jr. / Phil Bryant / Ron Chane / Tony Yarber


January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

JaNuArY 28 — ApRiL 23 20

MDWFP’s Museum of Natural Science’s newest exhibit, Titanoboa, features a 17-foot replica and two vertebrae casts made from the original fossils of the world’s largest snake. Known as Titanoboa, the world’s largest snake slithered in at 48 feet long and weighed an estimated one-and-a-half tons. Titanoboa: Monster Snake is a collaboration of the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service, the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, the Florida Museum of Natural History, the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, and the Smithsonian Channel.


January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

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Best of Jackson Best Radio Personality or Team; Radio Station: Carson and Bender, Y101

Best Local Live Theater/Theatrical Group; Best Stage Play: New Stage Theatre, “Steel Magnolias”

WYOY, 101.7, y101.com

Best Radio Stations finalists: WJMI (99 Jams, 99.7, wjmi.com) / WJSU (88.5, wjsu.org) / WMPN (MPB 91.3, mpbonline.org) / WRBJ (97.7, thebeatofthecapital.com) / WUSJ (US 96.3, us963.com)

1100 Carlisle St., 601-948-3533, newstagetheatre.com

New Stage Theatre, which Jacksonians selected as 2017’s Best Local Live Theater/Theatrical Group, is one of the groups that helped bring art to the forefront in the metro area, and it’s been around so long that most people in the area have at least heard of it, and most have attended plays there. Jane Reid Petty founded New Stage as a nonprofit in 1965, and its first season began in winter 1966. The company produced 13 seasons in its first building, a “Steel Magnolias” repurposed church on Gallatin and Hooker streets, before moving to its current location in Belhaven in 1978. In 2016, the theater began its 51st season, which featured plays such as “Our Town” and “A Christmas Story: The Musical,” along with this year’s winner for Best Stage Play, “Steel Magnolias.” Many southern women will remember the play’s 1989 movie adaptation, which starred actresses such as Dolly Parton, Julia Roberts and Sally Field. New Stage’s production opened Sept. 13, 2016, full of gossip, southern banter, and of course, big hair. New Stage’s next production, “Madagascar—A Musical Adventure,” opens Jan. 27 and runs through Feb. 5. —Amber Helsel Best Local Live Theater/Theatrical Group finalists Black Rose Theatre Company (103 Black St., Brandon, 601-825-1293) / Center Players Community Theatre (madisoncenterplayers.org) / Fondren Theatre Workshop (fondrentheatreworkshop.com) / MADDRAMA (Jackson State University, 1400 John R. Lynch St., jsums.edu) / Misfit Monkeys Improv Comedy Troupe LLC (misfitmonkeyscomedy.com) Best Stage Play finalists “Avenue Q” (Fondren Theatre Workshop, fondrentheatreworkshop.com) / “The Dance of the Lion King” (Montage Theatre of Dance, Hinds Community College, hindscc.edu) / “Our Town” (New Stage Theatre, 1100 Carlisle St., 601-948-3533, newstagetheatre.com) / “The Wiz” (MADDRAMA, Jackson State University, 1400 John R. Lynch St., jsums.edu)

Best Arts Organization: Mississippi Museum of Art

Best Public Forum or Speaker Series: Millsaps College Arts & Lecture Series


When people research the art community in Jackson, one of the first results they may come across is one of the largest art museums in the state, the Mississippi Museum of Art. It has come a long way since its beginnings as the Mississippi Art Association in the early 1900s. In conjunction with the “When Modern Was Contemporary” exhibit, which opened April 9, 2016, and ran through Oct. 30, 2016, the MMA put a greater focus on modern and contemporary art over the past year, including through classes, seminars and the monthly Museum After Hours events. The exhibit also inspired the “Mapping a Modern Mississippi” initiative, through which the museum facilitated interviews with many important creatives around the state to highlight Mississippi’s growing artistic community. MMA continues a focus on visual art from around the state with the Mississippi Invitational exhibit, which opened Dec. 17 and will run through March 11. —Amber Helsel Finalists: The Craftsmen’s Guild of Mississippi (950 Rice Road, 601-856-7546, craftsmensguildofms. org) / Greater Jackson Arts Council (201 E. Pascagoula St., 601-960-1557) / Mississippi Metropolitan Ballet
(110 Homestead Drive, Madison, 601-853-4508, msmetroballet.com) / New Stage Theatre (1100 Carlisle St., 601-948-3533, newstagetheatre.com)

Millsaps College, 1701 N. State St.; 601-974-1000; millsaps.edu

courtesy mississippi museum of art

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

380 S. Lamar St., 601-960-1515, msmuseumart.org

Learning is a lifetime thing. We all have hobbies and skills we want to pick up, and most likely, we all want to learn more about specific topics. That is where this year’s Best Public Forum or Speaker Series comes in. For the second consecutive year, Jacksonians chose Millsaps College’s Arts and Lecture Series for the award. The college created the series in the mid-1960s as a way to bring speakers and programs to share knowledge on topics such as music, art, literature and history to Jackson-area residents. Recent programs have included a talk on the craft-beer industry in Mississippi with Craig Hendry, Lucas Simmons and Matthew McLaughlin in November 2016 and “The State of Our State: Mississippi at 200 Years” with speakers Frank X. Walker, William Martin Wiseman and Stephanie Rolph in January. For the next event, world-renowned guitarist David Burgess will host “An Evening of Latin Guitar Music” on Feb. 21. —Amber Helsel Finalists: 1 Million Cups (Coalesce Cooperative Work Environment, 109 N. State St., 601-985-7979, coalescejxn.com) / Friday Forum (136 S. Adams St, 601-960-3008, koinoniacoffeehousejackson.com) / History Is Lunch (Mississippi Department of Archives and History, mdah.state.ms.us) / TEDxJackson (tedxjackson.com) / Thick and Proud Sisters (TAPS) “Love & Life” Series

courtesy New State Theatre

Best Radio Personality or Team finalists: Bo Bounds (ESPN The Zone 105.9, thezone1059.com) / Marshall Ramsey (MPB 91.3, mpbonline.org) Nate & Traci (US 96.3, us963.com) / Paul Gallo (SuperTalk Mississippi, supertalk.fm) / Rick & Kim (Miss 103, miss103.com)

courtesy y101

In the world of Top-40 radio, Y101 is one of the stations that stands out, and not just because it earned two Best of Jackson titles, Best Radio Personality and Best Radio Station, yet again. The company that owns Y101, The Radio People, has several stations throughout the South, but allows them some freedom to bring individuality to their programming. “We want to be the iPod for the city (left to right) Cami Marlowe, of Jackson,” Y101 program director and morning-show host Carson Case says. “We Chris Bender and Carson Case want you to be listening to your favorite songs every time you get in the car.” Case starts his day with co-hosts Chris Bender and Cami Marlowe on “The Morning Showgram with Carson and Bender.” By the time people tune in, they’ve been up for hours preparing for the show, and when the program is over, they begin prepping for the next day. However, Bender says it doesn’t feel like work. “We have a real passion for what we do,” he says. “This is a blessing.” Both hosts credit the listeners for their success, saying that they help to move the show forward every morning. —Dawn Dugle

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Best of Jackson Best Dance Group: Ballet Magnificat!

Best Nonprofit Organization: Stewpot Community Services

5406 Interstate 55 N., 601-977-1001, balletmagnificat.com

Even if you’re not a fan of ballet, chances are, you’ve heard of Ballet Magnificat!, which has been a winner and finalist in Best of Jackson for many years. Founders Kathy and Keith Thibodeaux are artists in their own right. Keith played Little Ricky on “I Love Lucy” and Johnny Paul on “The Andy Griffith Show.” He was also the drummer for rock band David and the Giants. Kathy was one of the first contract dancers for the Jackson Ballet Company. She also won a silver medal at the USA International Ballet Competition in 1982. The pair founded Ballet Magnificat! in 1986 and opened its School of the Arts three years later. Today, the school has about 300 students enrolled, and its company has two full-time touring troupes under the Ballet Mag umbrella. When they’re not touring across the world, you can also catch them performing at local churches and through productions such as 2016’s “Light Has Come: The Angels’ Story.” —Jessica Smith

1100 W. Capitol St., 601-353-2759, stewpot.org

trip burns / file photo

courtesy Ballet Magnificat!,

Finalists: Ballet Mississippi (201 E. Pascagoula St., Suite 106, 601-960-1560, balletms.com) / Dancing Dolls (The Dollhouse Dance Factory, 1410 Ellis Ave., 601-969-4000, dollhousedancefactory.com) / Mississippi Metropolitan Ballet
(110 Homestead Drive, Madison, 601853-4508, msmetroballet.com) / Montage Theatre of Dance (Hinds Community College, hindscc.edu) / Purple Diamonds (Diamond Dance Company, 1256 W. Capitol St., 601323-7476, diamonddancecompanyjackson.com)

Any urban area like Jackson deals with difficult issues such as homelessness. Thankfully, the city has a few organizations and people that step up to help stem it, including this year’s winner for Best Nonprofit Organization, Stewpot Community Services. The nonprofit started out in 1981 as a collaboration between seven local churches across many denominations that came together to figure out how to better help Jackson’s homeless and poor populations. At first, the organization made use of an old gas station on West Capitol Street while the organization was housed in Central Presbyterian Church nearby, but after the church closed in 1992, the Presbytery of Mississippi donated the building to Stewpot. Along with its Community Kitchen, which provides lunch to more than 120 people in need every day, the organization also has services such as men’s and women’s shelters, a clothing closet, a food pantry, a health clinic and the Opportunity Center, which is a day shelter that gives more than 100 homeless Jacksonians access to amenities such as showers, washing machines, computers and telephones each day. —Amber Helsel Finalists: Cheshire Abbey (cheshireabbey@gmail.com) / Community Animal Rescue & Adoption (960 N. Flag Chapel Road, 601-922-7575, carams.org) / Junior League of Jackson (805 Riverside Drive, 601-948-2357) / The Mustard Seed, Inc. (1085 Luckney Road, Brandown, 601-992-3556, mustardseedinc.com) / Operation Shoestring (1711 Bailey Ave., 601-353-6336, operationshoestring.org)

Best Community Garden/Nature Attraction: Mississippi Museum of Natural Science 2148 Riverside Drive, 601-576-6000, museum.mdwfp.com

To see past winners, visit bestofjackson.com.


Finalists: Comprehensive Beatdown (twitter.com/compbeatdown) / Country Squire Radio (countrysquireradio.com) / The Roguish Gent (soundcloud.com/cceproductions) / Token Talk (soundcloud.com/tokentalk)

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Best of Jackson exists as a way for Jacksonians to praise their favorite parts of their hometown. “Let’s Talk Jackson,” which people voted as this year’s Best Local Podcast, is like the recorded equivalent of that idea. Since launching the podcast in summer 2015, host Beau York, owner of the Podastery Network and co-founder of the Satchel Podcast Player, and guest hosts Paul Wolf, Chellese Hall, Hunter Camp and Curnis Upkins III have interviewed more than 40 entrepreneurs, artists, and other innovators from the Jackson area and beyond. York also volunteers to teach podcasting to Youth Media Project students. “There are a lot of very talented people in Jackson and a lot of fun things happening, but Jackson, historically, doesn’t get the credit it deserves in terms of those that are here, that have planted a flag and are staying, working to do some amazing things,” York says. “Let’s Talk Jackson” recently launched its fourth season, which includes interviews with reporter Bracey Harris and hip-hop artist 5th Child. —Micah Smith

Imani Khayyam

Finalists: The Art Garden at the Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St., 601-960-1515, msmuseumart.org) / Clinton Community Nature Center (617 Dunton Road, Clinton, 601-926-1104, clintonnaturecenter.org) / Flowood Nature Park (4077 Flowood Drive, 601-992-4440, ci.flowood.ms.us) / LeFleur’s Bluff State Park (3315 Lakeland Terrace, 601-987-3923, mdwfp.state.ms.us) / Mynelle Gardens (4736 Clinton Blvd., 601-960-1894)

Best Local Podcast: Let’s Talk Jackson Amber Helsel

If you ever want to find a location to get in touch with nature, try the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science, this year’s winner for Best Community Garden/Nature Attraction. Fannye A. Cook, who helped to create the state’s first game laws and led a grassroots effort to create the Mississippi Game and Fish Commission, founded the museum in 1932. These days, the museum has no shortage of new things to check out. It features multiple nature trails, a 100,000-gallon aquarium network, and a 1,700-square foot greenhouse for children and adults alike to learn and explore. The museum also has fossil specimens and other permanent exhibits, and often hosts special traveling attractions, such as the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service’s “Titanoboa: Monster Snake,” which runs Jan. 28 through April 23, and introduces visitors to the largest snake fossil ever found. —LaShanda Phillips


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Best of Jackson 901 E. Fortification St., 601-948-0055, fenianspub.com

622 Duling Ave., 601-292-7121, dulinghall.com

This year further cements some Best of Jackson royalty, as voters stayed loyal to some perennial winners that prove themselves year after year. For Fenian’s Pub, that means a fourth consecutive win for Best Open Mic Night and a third consecutive win for Best Place to Drink Cheap. The longtime-favorite watering hole will also be the first business to take home the crown for a new category, Best Service-Industry Hangout. Fenian’s open-mic night, which takes place Tuesdays starting at 9 p.m., has been a local institution for many years, but it’s not exactly “same old, same old” with the weekly event. Host Matthew Nooe, guitarist and vocalist for alternative band Risko Danza, took the reins of the open-mic night in 2016, keeping the stage warm between Jackson musicians and other entertainers wanting to try out new material or step in front of an audience for the first time. As for Fenian’s other two awards for 2017, they certainly go hand in hand. A great service-industry hangout requires two important things: late service so you can swing by after work and drink specials to keep you from breaking the bank. Fenian’s offers both all week long, but that’s especially true on Service Industry Nights on Sundays from 4 p.m. to midnight, where the working crowd can enjoy happy-hour specials all night. —Micah Smith

For a building that opened nearly a century ago, Duling Hall has a lot going on. Often, several nights a week, people pack the former schoolhouse for private parties and cool concerts, with the high-quality sound system, lighting and back-of-the-room bar as some of its biggest draws. Thanks to efforts of entertainment-booking company Ardenland and property owner Peters Development, Duling Hall has received the most votes for the city’s Best Live Music Venue for a third consecutive year, also scooping up a second win in a row for the title of Best Place to Book a Party or Shower. While some of the biggest names that Arden Barnett and company brought to Jackson last year required equally big venues, there’s been no shortage of powerful performers in Duling Hall. In the past year alone, the space hosted acts such as Galactic, Joe Thomas, Indigo Girls, Amanda Shires and Keb’ Mo’. In between wedding showers, fundraisers and other private events, Jacksonians will have plenty of big shows to look forward to at Duling Hall this year, including Isaiah Rashad on Feb. 19, Son Volt on March 7, and on March 10, Experience Hendrix, which features artists such as Buddy Guy, Zakk Wylde, Johnny Lang and Dweezil Zappa. And those are just a couple that we know of so far. —Micah Smith

Best Open-Mic Night finalists: McB’s Bar & Grill (815 Lake Harbour Drive, Ridgeland, 601-956-8362, eatmcbs.com) / Offbeat Comedy Open Mic (Offbeat, 151 Wesley Ave., 601-3769404, offbeatjxn.com) / Soul Wired Café (111 Millsaps Ave., 601-790-0864, soulwiredcafe.com) / Synergy Nights at The Med Bar & Grill (1200 E. County Line Road, Ridgeland, 601-956-0082) Best Service-Industry Hangout finalists: The Apothecary at Brent’s Drugs (655 Duling Ave., 769-257-3517, apothecaryjackson.com) / Capitol Grill (5050 Interstate 55 N., Suite F, 601-899-8845, capitolgrillofjackson.com) / One Block East (642 Tombigbee St., 601944-0203, oneblockeast.com) / Sam’s Lounge (5035 Interstate 55 N., 601-983-2526)

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courtesy Jason Turner

Best Place to Drink Cheap finalists: Big Sleepy’s (closed) / Capitol Grill (5050 Interstate 55 N., Suite F, 899-8845, capitolgrillofjackson.com) / Martin’s Restaurant & Bar (214 S. State St., 601-354-9712, martinsbar39201.com) / One Block East (642 Tombigbee St., 601944-0203, oneblockeast.com) / Sam’s Lounge (5035 Interstate 55 N., 601-983-2526)


courtesy Duling Hall

Best Live Music Venue; Best Place to Book a Party or Shower: Duling Hall

Imani Khayyam

Best Open-Mic Night; Best Place to Drink Cheap; Best Service-Industry Hangout: Fenian’s Pub

Best Live Music Venue finalists: Hal & Mal’s (200 S. Commerce St., 601-948-0888, halandmals.com) / The Hideaway (5100 Interstate 55 N., 601-291-4759, thehideawayms.com) / Martin’s Restaurant & Bar (214 S. State St., 601-354-9712, martinsbar39201.com) / Shucker’s Oyster Bar (116 Conestoga Road, Ridgeland, 601-853-0105, shuckersontherez.com) / Thalia Mara Hall (255 E. Pascagoula St., 601-960-1537, jacksonms.gov) Best Place to Book a Party or Shower finalists: The Cedars (4145 Old Canton Road, 601-981-9606, fondren.org) / Deep South Pops (1800 N. State St., 601-398-2174; 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 173, 601-398-0623; deepsouthpops.com) / The South Warehouse (627 E. Silas Brown St., 601-939-4518) / Table 100 (100 Ridge Way, Flowood, 601-420-4202, tableonehundred.com)

Best Musician; Best Rock Artist or Band: Jason Turner, Jason Turner Band jasonturnerband.com

When Jacksonians catch singer-songwriter Jason Turner performing around town, they shouldn’t be too shocked to hear more than a few unfamiliar tunes. After all, he just released his seventh album of original music, “Reset,” on Dec. 2 through Malaco Records’ new imprint, Old Trace Records. “I put out my first album when I was 17, which was just me and an acoustic guitar, but hopefully those have all disappeared off the face of the planet,” he says with a laugh. “My voice needed to get a little lower at that age.” Turner has been a full-time musician

since returning to Jackson in 2010 after spending four years in Nashville. With that consistency, it is also not surprising that he garners several Best of Jackson awards each year. For 2017, voters selected him as the Best Rock Artist or Band as well as Best Musician. While Turner says he loves performing and writing new songs, it isn’t about reaching a new rung on the career ladder but rather getting his music into the hands of people who will enjoy it. He says: “I guess maybe because I’m older, I don’t really go, ‘Man, I hope I make

it big,’ or whatever people say, because who knows what that is in this day and age in the record business anymore? … Really, I just hope enough people get into it so that I can keep making more of them.” —Micah Smith Best Musician finalists: Andrew Pates / Chad Wesley (Chad Wesley Band, chadwesleyband.com) / Hunter Gibson (huntergibson.com) / Kerry Thomas Best Rock Artist or Band finalists: Candybone / Dream Cult / Stonewalls

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Best of Jackson Best Cover Band: Southern Komfort Brass Band

Best Gospel Artist or Group: The Mississippi Mass Choir

Southern Komfort Brass Band first began performing around Jackson in 2010 and has since solidified itself as one of the premier cover bands in the city. The band has received recognition in many Best of Jackson competitions, this year earning the title of 2017’s Best Cover Band, and also appeared on the first season of Mississippi Public Broadcasting’s “Amped & Wired.” SKBB can be heard performing in local bars and venues, often with multiple events in a week (and the band has made a few surprise appearances at Best of Jackson), and they show no signs of slowing down as they continue into the year. The musicians’ horn-infused covers of popular songs from a wide variety of genres are designed to keep the crowd moving wherever they take the stage. As their theme song, appropriately titled “The SK Theme,” says: “When you get a taste of Southern Komfort, it’s gonna get live tonight.” —Malcolm Morrow

The Mississippi Mass Choir notched its second consecutive win for Best Gospel Artist/ Group this year, but—and no offense to us— it’s hardly the group’s biggest achievement. Since forming in 1988, the Mississippi Mass Choir has scored two Grammy Award nominations and won more than a dozen Stellar Awards, a Billboard Award and countless other accolades. On the local level, the choir also has its own entry in the “Mississippi Music Experience” museum at The Iron Horse Grill. The recognition has kept on rolling in recent years, as well. Earlier this month, the choir’s music was featured in episodes of both ABC show “Blackish” and ESPN SportsCenter, and a video of hip-hop icon Snoop Dogg rocking out to a MMC song exploded in popularity on Instagram. Being that we’re still at the start of the year, it’s probably a safe bet that even bigger things are on the way. —Micah Smith



courtesy The Mississippi Mass Choir

courtesy Southern Komfort Brass Band

Finalists: Ben Ford (benfordmusic.com) / Dathan Thigpen / Laurie Walker Hall Finalists: Acoustic Crossroads / Burnham Road (artistecard.com/burnhamroad) / Diesel 255 (diesel255.com) / Travelin’ Jane

Best Hip-Hop Artist or Group: SilaS

Best Bar: Hal & Mal’s

200 S. Commerce St., 601-948-0888, halandmals.com

Best Jazz Artist or Band: Raphael Semmes courtesy Raphael Semmes

Imani Khayyam

courtesy silas

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms



Last year was a breakout time for Best Hip-Hop Artist winner SilaS, an unabashed anime fan. His highly acclaimed album, “The Day I Died,” earned national attention and was featured in popular entertainment media such as Vibe Magazine. The album dealt with the nostalgia of remembering a carefree childhood in comparison to the hardships of adult life, and its lead single, “Gullah Gullah Island,” brought issues of the African American experience to the forefront. Meanwhile, his live shows have captivated audiences both locally and beyond, and drawn some of the largest crowds yet for an independent artist in Jackson. He also toured extensively and performed at major festivals such as A3C in Atlanta and South by Southwest in Austin, Texas. Here’s hoping that 2017 will see SilaS come even closer to becoming the Hokage of Jackson. —Malcolm Morrow Finalists: 5th Child (5thchildmusic.bandcamp.com) / Coke Bumaye (cokebumaye.bandcamp.com) / Hollywood Luck (1stupluck.bandcamp.com) / Savvy (savvylildaddy. bandcamp.com)

A longtime Jackson institution, Hal & Mal’s is always on a short list of the city’s top destinations for drinks and entertainment. Can’t-miss parties and special events dot the Hal & Mal’s calendar, and both local and touring musicians have carved out their place here over time. Though top-flight musical talent brings the crowd through the door, the food and drink are what keeps folks coming back after all these years. “For us, we just do our thing, and we’ve done it a long time,” says P.J. Lee, who serves as co-general manager along with his wife, Brandi. “We love being downtown, and we love being a part of the community. So anytime people think about us in contests like this, we always appreciate the love and support.” —Alex Thiel Finalists: The Apothecary at Brent’s Drugs (655 Duling Ave., 769-257-3517, apothecaryjackson.com) / Fenian’s Pub (901 E. Fortification St., 601-948-0055, fenianspub.com) / Fondren Public (2765 Old Canton Road, 769-216-2589, fondrenpublic.com) / Martin’s Restaurant & Bar (214 S. State St., 601354-9712, martinsbar39201.com) / Shucker’s Oyster Bar (116 Conestoga Road, Ridgeland, 853-0105, shuckersontherez.com)

There’s an obvious draw to Raphael Semmes’ bass-player faces and his out-of-this-world voice, but those are just starting points in delving into the creative musicianship of this year’s Best Jazz Artist/ Band winner. The Grenada, Miss., native is a well-respected member of the Jackson music scene, and not just for his own playing abilities. Semmes is a major supporter of the arts in the city and is heavily involved with several big local events, including WellsFest, the Fusion Jazz series at Fusion Coffeehouse in Ridgeland, and the Township Jazz Festival. Those who haven’t witnessed Semmes onstage are shortchanging their ears, but they’ll have plenty of opportunities in the coming year, as he plays with several jazz ensembles around town. —Jessica Smith Finalists: Barry Leach (barryleach.com) / Southern Komfort Brass Band / Swing de Paris / Vibe Doctors Jazz Project


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January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms



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Best of Jackson Best R&B Artist or Band; Best Singer: Kerry Thomas

Sexiest Female Bartender: Lauren Hood

For four years, fans of Jackson R&B artist Kerry Thomas were asking when they would get a follow-up to his successful 2012 debut, “Eye of the Storm.” Much of that time, the Baton Rouge, La., native says he asked himself similar questions: “What should come next? What happens after you’ve reached what may be the peak of your career?” His sophomore EP, “After the High,” released in June 2016, is his answer to those questions. Thomas, whom Jacksonians voted as this year’s Best Singer and Best R&B Artist, says the release takes his music to new heights in many ways, including in how he challenged himself vocally and in the artists he worked with, including Cherita Brent, who co-wrote several songs on the EP, Clinton Babers II, and hip-hop artists such as SilaS and Coke Bumaye. “I just want to say thanks, sincerely, to anyone who has come out to a show, who actually put down money and bought the album, or who liked a Facebook post or any of the social media,” he says. “Honestly, it’s overwhelming.” —Micah Smith

“I didn’t think anybody knew my name!” That was Lauren Hood’s reaction to being named a finalist for 2017’s Sexiest Female Bartender. She has been bartending at Saltine Oyster Bar for more than two years now, and says it’s a really fun place to work. Her favorite part of bartending, she says, is making different drinks for people with crazy requests. Some of the craziest requests she has ever had was a pickle-juice martini and a St. Germain with Guinness beer. Her response was simple: “If that’s what you want, that’s what you get.” Hood prefers whiskey, and her contribution to the fall cocktail menu at Saltine was a drink she called the Grace O’Malley. She wanted to make something fruity with whiskey. The drink includes Jack Daniel’s, Grand Marnier, lemon juice, cranberry syrup and allspice on the rocks. Hood proves that creativity, friendliness and alcohol mix well. —Arielle Dreher

Saltine Oyster Bar, 622 Duling Ave., Suite 201, 601-982-2899, saltinerestaurant.com

courtesy Lauren Hood

courtesy Kerry Thomas


Finalists: Ashley Lewis (Green Ghost Tacos, 2801 N. State St., 601-203-2144; Majestic Burger, 1067 Highland Colony Pkwy. Suite B, Ridgeland, majesticburger.com) / Kirby Coutch (Fenian’s Pub, 901 E. Fortification St., 601-948-0055, fenianspub.com) / Kodie Mann (Sam’s Lounge, 5035 Interstate 55 N., 601-983-2526) / Kristen Thompson (Lou’s Full-Serv, 904B E. Fortification St., 601-487-6359, lousfullserv.com)

Sexiest Male Bartender: Eli Juren Best Singer finalists: Akami Graham (artistecard.com/ akamigraham) / Amanda Joullian / Chris Link / Doug Hurd

Best Karaoke DJ: Angela Pittman Krazy Karaoke, 601-566-0951

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

courtesy Angela Pittman

“Karaoke isn’t about singing well; it’s about having fun while you’re doing it,” Angela Pittman, this year’s winner for Best Karaoke DJ, says. She became a karaoke deejay about 20 years ago, starting with one set of equipment. Now, her business, Krazy Karaoke, has grown to the point where her team can be at 10 events at once. She invested in state-of-the-art sound systems and all the latest karaoke tracks so that when participants are on the stage, they feel like rock stars, she says. Those who sing also get encouragement from the Krazy Karaoke Krewe, a group of regulars who cheers on the performers. “Everything that Krazy Karaoke is, I owe to my friends who come out and support karaoke,” Pittman says. “I would be nothing without them.” —Dawn Dugle


Finalists: Cory Drake / DJ Stache / Matt Collette

Jacksonians have selected Eli Juren as the king of the Sexiest Male Bartender category again, his second consecutive win for the title. Juren, who was gallivanting around Asia when we were writing Best of Jackson blurbs, works at Saltine Oyster Bar alongside this year’s Sexiest Female Bartender, Lauren Hood, and gave us an interview last year. Juren told the JFP then that he was surprised to even be nominated. Bartending is fun for him because he is able to get out of his shell, socializing with customers, and because of the relaxed nature of his job, he said.. Apparently, Juren has kept up the charm and swagger throughout 2016. Congrats to the now-veteran Saltine barkeep for starting a winning streak. We hope you’re home in time for the party! —Arielle Dreher Finalists: Andrew Booth Luckett (WonderLust, 3911 Northview Drive, 337-378-9003) / Jamie Moss (Fenian’s Pub, 901 E. Fortification St., 601-948-0055, fenianspub.com) / Simon Kazery (Ole Tavern on George Street, 416 George St., 601-960-2700) / Ty Duncan (Cinco de Mayo, 880 Lake Harbour Drive, Ridgeland, 601-957-1882, cinco-de-mayo-ms.com)

To see past winners, visit bestofjackson.com.

Imani Khayyam

Best R&B Artist finalists: AJC & The Envelope Pushers / Lari

Saltine Oyster Bar, 622 Duling Ave., Suite 201, 601-982-2899, saltinerestaurant.com



Congratulations to our finalists: Best Place to Work: Baptist Health Systems Best Fitness Center/Gym: Baptist Healthplex Best Massage Therapist: Martha Howell Hooey


(601) 720-1885 www.dwsms.com dwsconnect@yahoo.com

Adriana Heindl owner/director

Serving the community through dance for 10 years! Thank you for believing in us!

The Following Is Not For Print/For Information Only Placement: Jackson Free Press. 01/2017. 9” x 5.5”. Commissioned by Robby Channell. (CorpComm001/Layout A-L/Healthplex/Ads/Best of Jackson)

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms



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Best of Jackson Best College-Student Hangout: Fondren Public

Best Club DJ: DJ Cadillac

2765 Old Canton Road, 769-216-2589, fondrenpublic.com

Finalists: DJ Phingaprint / DJ T.Lewis / DJ T Money (themoneyteam601.com) / DJ Taboo (digitaldjpool.com/Mitchtaboo) / DJ Young Venom (djyoungvenom.com)

Finalists: Cups Espresso Café Fondren (2757 Old Canton Road, 601-362-7422, cupsespressocafe.com) / Deep South Pops (1800 N. State St., 601-398-2174; 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 173, 601-398-0623; deepsouthpops.com) / Fenian’s Pub (901 E. Fortification St., 601-948-0055, fenianspub.com) / Ole Tavern on George Street (416 George St., 601-960-2700, oletavern.com) / Sneaky Beans (2914 N. State St., 601-487-6349)

Best Country Artist or Band: Jason Miller Band facebook.com/thejasonmillerband


Finalists: Chris Gill (chrisgillmusic.com) / Jarekus Singleton (jarekussingleton.com) / Scott Albert Johnson (scottalbertjohnson.com) / Sherman Lee Dillon

Erika Goldring

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms


As Mississippi is the birthplace of blues music, you can bet that Best Blues Artist/Band is always a competitive category. Voters’ choice for the winner this year is no stranger to awards, though, and we don’t just mean Best of Jackson titles. In addition to earning his third consecutive BOJ win for Best Blues Artist/Band, 83-yearold bluesman Bobby Rush has received plenty of national attention in recent months following his fourth Grammy Award nomination for Best Traditional Blues Album. The album in question is 2016’s “Porcupine Meat,” his first release on Rounder Records, for which he teamed with fellow Mississippi blues icon Vasti Jackson and Grammy-winning producer Scott Billington. While the Blues Hall of Famer certainly doesn’t need a Grammy Award to prove his impact on the music industry, it would be a worthy addition to his Best of Jackson certificates. —Micah Smith

courtesy Jason Miller Band

Best Blues Artist or Band: Bobby Rush

The Jason Miller Band had a big year in 2016, playing at packed venues across the South and scoring its first Best of Jackson win for Best Country Artist/Band, a title the group took again for 2017. The musicians also released a new original single, “Dirt on Me,” to the elation of their supporters—who number more than 8,100 if Facebook likes are any indication, but hey, who’s counting? Many fans even predate the band itself, having followed Miller since he sang for country act Crossin’ Dixon. The Jason Miller Band, which now includes guitarists Jamie Bright and John Andy Bowen, keyboardist Topher Brown, bassist Anthony Daniels and drummer Nathan Spears, has been his main musical endeavor since 2012. Jacksonians can expect plenty of new tunes when the group performs locally in 2017. Miller says he and his band mates are preparing tons of fresh cover material and originals for an upcoming EP, which they plan to release later this year. —Micah Smith Finalists: Burnham Road (artistecard.com/burnhamroad) / Chasin’ Dixie / Miles Flatt (milesflatt.com) / Young Valley (youngvalley.bandcamp.com)

courtesy DJ Cadillac

courtesy Fondren Public

Voters have given Fondren Public several different distinctions in Best of Jackson over the years, but it has taken the Best College Student Hangout title nearly every year since opening in fall 2013. General Manager Brad Dreher says he wants Fondren Public to have an atmosphere that encourages people to actually talk and interact with each other. With shuffleboard, cornhole, bocce ball, life-size Jenga, a large patio space and more, Fondren Public is an ideal place to hang out. In addition to 24 types of beer on tap, including from local Lucky Town Brewing Company, Fondren Public has a full menu including four types of sliders, salads, fried chicken and waffle tacos, Cajun corndogs, BLTs and boiled peanuts, among other items, to keep college students well-fed while they’re having fun. —Tyler Edwards

With his first win for Best Club DJ, Bo Trebotich, better known as DJ Cadillac, continues to solidify himself as one of the most popular deejays in Jackson. While he wasn’t as active performing live last year, he was hard at work in the studio and collaborated with other deejays in the area. He performed alongside DJ Uri, DJ Tam and Taboo at every Fondren’s First Thursday in 2016 and helped form a new company of turntable technicians called The Collective. In addition to his party rocking, Trebotich is involved in the Jackson-based outreach ministry Heart of David, which provides mentorship for inner-city youth and hosts the Ignite Sports Camp each year, which former WWE stars Ted Dibiase and Ted Dibiase Jr. head. DJ Cadillac will perform at Kemistry Hookah Bar & Lounge on Jan. 28 along with Louisiana-based deejay Quickie Mart, and locals The Nasty Sho and DJ Uri. —Malcolm Morrow

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Best of Jackson

Are you a finalist? Call 601-362-6121 x25 or email mary@jacksonfreepress.com

Best Local Place to Watch the Game: Burgers & Blues

As 2017 revs up and warmer weather looms, Jacksonians have voted to say that Shucker’s Oyster Bar is the Best Place to Dance in the metro area. On weekends, Shucker’s often boasts not one, not two, but three different musical acts over the course of a single night, ensuring that all manner of rugs can—and will—be cut. “We have a live band to dance to, and when the band goes on break, we have a deejay to dance to,” manager Tony Terranova says. “So there’s something high-energy going on at all times.” If those performers aren’t exactly your speed, or you just want a change of scene, there’s usually a second more laid-back act playing on Shucker’s deck (so really, even wallflowers have no excuse). —Alex Thiel

Finalists: 4th & Goal Sports Café (5100 Interstate 55 N., 769-208-8283, 4thgoal. com) / Alumni House Sports Bar & Grill (110 Bass Pro Drive, Pearl, 601-939-5238, alumnihousepearl.com) / The Bulldog (6111 Ridgewood Road, 601-978-3502, bulldog-jackson.draftfreak.com) / Capitol Grill (5050 Interstate 55 N., Suite F, 601-8998845, capitolgrillofjackson.com) / Fondren Public (2765 Old Canton Road, 769216-2589, fondrenpublic.com)

Finalists: F. Jones Corner (303 N. Farish St., 601-983-1148, fjonescorner.com) / The Hideaway (5100 Interstate 55 N., 601-291-4759, thehideawayms.com) / WonderLust (3911 Northview Drive, 337-378-9003) / Ole Tavern on George Street (416 George St., 601-960-2700)

Best Place to Play Pool: The Green Room

Best LGBT Hangout: WonderLust

444 Bounds St., 601-713-3444

The Green Room has a healthy dynasty on its shoulders when it comes to Best of Jackson wins. For more than seven years, the combination restaurant, bar and billiards room has received the most votes for Best Place to Play Pool, but like all the best pool players, it’s not as easy as The Green Room makes it look. There are tons of great bars in the metro area to put your cue to work, but The Green Room’s drink and food selections, and its commitment to the game keep Jacksonians coming back. One of the bar’s biggest draws is its pool league, which takes place Monday through Friday every week. However, The Green Room isn’t just for the billiards elite—all levels of skill are welcome to play, and the bar even has instructors to up your game. —Micah Smith Finalists: Last Call Sports Grill (1428 Old Square Road, 601-713-2700, lastcallsportsgrill. com) / One Block East (642 Tombigbee St., 601-944-0203, oneblockeast.com) / Pop’s Saloon (2636 S. Gallatin St., 601-961-4747) / Reed Pierce’s Eat, Drink & Play (6791 S. Siwell Road, Byram, 601-376-0777, reedpierces.com) / Sam’s Lounge (5035 Interstate 55 N., 601-983-2526)

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

courtesy wonderlust

Finalists: Babalu Tapas & Tacos (622 Duling Ave., Suite 106, 601-366-5757, babalutacos.com) / Cups Espresso Café (Multiple locations; cupsespressocafe.com) / Fenian’s Pub (901 E. Fortification St., 601-948-0055, fenianspub.com) / The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen (1200 N. State St., Suite 100, 601-398-4562, themanshipjackson.com)

trip burns / file photo

3911 Northview Drive, 337-378-9003, wonderlustjackson.com

WonderLust owner Jesse Pandolfo says that after Jackson’s previous LGBT club, Bottoms Up, closed at the end of 2014, people just needed somewhere to go, and she knew that she could help. She opened the WonderLust in September 2015 and has now won Best LGBT Hangout two years running. The 18-and-up club is open Wednesday through Saturday and features a weekly karaoke night and drag show. Over the past year, the club also began bringing in star drag performers such as Jaidynn Diore Fierce and DiDa Ritz from reality show “RuPaul’s Drag Race.” “We have been booking bigger and bigger talent, and the acts are only going to get more famous,” Pandolfo says. The club plays a wide range of music, including hip-hop, EDM and Top40 remixes. Pandolfo says that when people ask what the best club in Jackson is, she wants the first thought to be “the gay bar, WonderLust.” —Tyler Edwards

courtesy shucker’s oyster bar

Jacksonians and area residents have a lot of places to watch sports around the metro area, but this year’s winner for Best Place to Watch the Game, Burgers & Blues, makes it an experience. The restaurant has wall-mounted TVs all around it, but the patio is the best place to go for football, basketball or whatever your athletic interest. During colder months, the outdoor heaters will keep you warm as you watch the many overhead-hanging TVs that are tuned into the big games. The patio also has activities such as Jenga, ring toss and corn hole to keep the kids (or adults) happy. Of course, you’ll need food to celebrate your fandom. The restaurant’s revamped menu has classics such as the Sonic Boom and BNB burgers, and loaded ranch-dip fries or tots, as well as new offerings across the board such as the fried bologna sandwich and pork tacos. —Dawn Dugle

116 Conestoga Road, Ridgeland, 601-853-0105, shuckersontherez.com

courtesy Burgers and Blues

1060 E. County Line Road, Suite 22, Ridgeland, 601-899-0038, burgersblues.com

Best Place to Dance: Shucker’s Oyster Bar


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Best of Jackson Best Place for a First Date; Place for Cocktails; Happy Hour; Margarita; Mexican/Latin; Veggie Burger: Babalu Tapas & Tacos 622 Duling Ave., Suite 106, 601-366-5757, eatbabalu.com)

Best Place for First Date finalists: Deep South Pops (1800 N. State St., 601-398-2174; 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 173, 601-398-0623; deepsouthpops.com) / BRAVO! Italian Restaurant & Bar (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 244, 601-982-8111, bravobuzz.com) / Saltine Oyster Bar (622 Duling Ave., Suite 201, 601-982-2899, saltinerestaurant. com) / Table 100 (100 Ridge Way, Flowood, 601-4204202, tableonehundred.com) / Walker’s Drive In (3016 N. State St., 601-982-2633, walkersdrivein.com) Best Place for Cocktails finalists: The Apothecary at Brent’s Drugs (655 Duling Ave., 769-257-3517, apothecaryjackson.com) / BRAVO! Italian Restaurant & Bar (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 244, 601-982-8111, bravobuzz.com) / CAET Wine Bar (3100 N. State St., Suite 102, 601-321-9169, caetwinebar.com) / Library Lounge (Fairview Inn, 734 Fairview St., 601-948-3429, fairviewinn. com) / The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen (1200 N. State St., Suite 100, 601-398-4562, themanshipjackson.com)

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Best Happy Hour finalists: BRAVO! Italian Restaurant & Bar (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 244, 601-982-8111, bravobuzz.com) / CAET Wine Bar (3100 N. State St., Suite 102, 601-321-9169, caetwinebar.com) / Capitol Grill (5050 Interstate 55 N., Suite F, 601-899-8845, capitolgrillofjackson.com) / The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen (1200 N. State St., Suite 100, 601-398-4562, themanshipjackson.com) / Saltine Oyster Bar (622 Duling Ave., Suite 201, 601-982-2899, saltinerestaurant.com)


Best Beer Selection: The Bulldog 6111 Ridgewood Road, 601-978-3502, bulldogjackson.draftfreak.com

The wall of beer taps is one of the first things you may notice when you enter The Bulldog. The pub boasts more than 60 beers on tap, including Abita Brewing Company Mardi Gras Bock, Lagunitas Brewing Co. Brown Shugga Ale and Southern Prohibition

Best Margarita finalists: Cinco De Mayo (880 Lake Harbour Drive, Ridgeland, 601-957-1882, cinco-de-mayoms.com) / El Sombrero (multiple locations, elsombrero.co) / Jaco’s Tacos (318 S. State St., 601-961-7001, jacostacos. net) / La Cazuela Mexican Grill (1401 E. Fortification St., 601-353-3014) / Sombra Mexican Kitchen (140 Township Ave., Suite 100, Ridgeland, 601-707-7950; 111 Market St., Flowood, 215-5445, sombramexicankitchen.com) Best Mexican/Latin finalists: Cinco De Mayo (880 Lake Harbour Drive, 601-957-1882) / El Sombrero (multiple locations, elsombrero.co) / Green Ghost Tacos (1290 E. County Line Road, Ridgeland, 601-957-7436; 2801 N. State St., 601-203-2144; greenghosttacos.com) / Jaco’s Tacos (318 S. State St., 601-961-7001, jacostacos.net; Jaco’s Tacos Fast N Fresh, 5657 Highway 25, Flowood, 601-961-7001, jacosfastnfresh.com) / Sombra Mexican Kitchen (140 Township Ave., Suite 100, Ridgeland, 601-707-7950; 111 Market St., Flowood, 601215-5445, sombramexicankitchen.com) Best Veggie Burger finalists: Burgers & Blues (1060 E. County Line Road, Suite 22, Ridgeland, 601-899-0038, burgersblues.com) / Cool Al’s (4654 McWillie Drive, 601713-3020) / High Noon Café (2807 Old Canton Road, 601-366-1602, rainbowcoop.org) / Local 463 Urban Kitchen (1000 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 5002, Ridgeland, 601-707-7684, local463.com) / Majestic Burger (1067 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite B, Ridgeland, 601-707-0093)

Brewing Milk Stout, and has another 70-plus options in bottles. It’s like taking an extended road trip to local and regional breweries without leaving your barstool. If you don’t know what you want, the bartenders and wait staff can provide a suggestion. For Pint Nights on Wednesdays, each customer gets to take home his or her glass. And when the weather cooperates, you can get there early to secure a spot on the patio to try a few

different brews with friends. —Dawn R. Dugle Finalists: Fondren Public (2765 Old Canton Road, 769-216-2589) / Hops & Habanas (2771 Old Canton Road, 769-572-4631; 123 Grandview Blvd., Madison, Suite N, 601-853-7449) / LD’s Beer Run (5006 Parkway Drive, 769-208-8686) / The Pig & Pint (3139 N. State St., 601-326-6070) / Saltine Oyster Bar (622 Duling Ave., Suite 201, 601-982-2899)

2801 N. State St., 601-203-2144; 1290 E. County Line Road, Ridgeland, 601-957-7436; greenghosttacos.com

courtesy Green Ghost Tacos

courtesy Babalu

Multiple award winner Babalu offers something for everyone, whether you’re going on a date, needing a place to hang out, or you’re just looking for a relaxing night out. The restaurant’s drink menu has plenty of original creations, such as the Champarita, which has sparkling wine, agave nectar, sour mix and triple sec. On Mondays, Babalu has $5 margaritas all day. The restaurant also has Happy Hour from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. Babalu’s food menu offers dishes in a wide variety of styles, but it’s perhaps best known for its tapas (small plates) items such as fierce shrimp, which has fried Gulf shrimp, Fresnopepper cole slaw, chipotle chili sauce and cilantro. The restaurant also has atun, carnitas and camarones tacos, and Mexican street corn. If you’re a vegetarian, don’t worry. Babalu has you covered with dishes such as guacamole, chips and salsa, and its black-bean burger, which is a homemade black-bean cake, red chimichurri, grilled red onion, arugula and avocado on a sourdough bun. —Amber Helsel

Best New Restaurant; Food Truck or Mobile Vendor: Green Ghost Tacos

Green Ghost Tacos has had a location in Ridgeland since late 2015, but last year, it opened a second location in Jackson. The Fondren restaurant experienced delays in opening, but the owners, Cesar Torres and Oswaldo Sanchez, already had a plan in place to give Jacksonians their tacos and other dishes: a food truck. You could spot it at almost every Fondren’s First Thursday before the restaurant’s opening in fall 2016, and the restaurant also participated in a few of the Food Truck Fridays last summer and fall, among other events. Now, Green Ghost has two locations and a food truck, so Jacksonians and metro residents will always be somewhat close to tacos. The beauty of Green Ghost is its menu. Instead of having a complex array of dishes, the customer gets to choose the type of food such as burritos or quesadillas, and the filling, which is good (and bad, if you’re indecisive) thing. The menu also has desserts such as a flan and pastel tres leches. If you have to get in and out of the restaurant fast, Green Ghost also has online ordering at green ghosttacos.com. —Amber Helsel Best New Restaurant finalists: Crazy Cat Eat Up (1491 Canton Mart Road, Suite 12, 601-9571441, crazycatbakers.com) / freshii (748 MacKenzie Lane, Flowood, 601-718-0020, freshii.com/us) / Gumbo Girl (5681 Highway 18 W., 601-790-0486, gumbogirl.com) / Hong Kong Tea House (4924 Interstate 55 N., 601-368-8623) / Taste Bistro & Desserts (5419 Highway 25, Suite L, Flowood, 769-235-6232, tastebistroanddesserts.com) Best Food Truck/Mobile Vendor finalists: 2 for 7 Kitchen (601-837-1794) / LurnyD’s Grille (601-906-9480, lurnydsgrille.com) / One Guy Steak and Chicken (601-503-5908)

(601) 982-8300 Finalist: Best Beauty Shop or Salon Best of Jackson 2017


(601) 826-0707 Finalist: Best Barber Shop Best of Jackson 2017 O L D


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J A C K S O N ,


3 9 2 1 6

Thanks for making us a finalist for Best Doughnuts! (WY%AST #LINTON -3s601.925.0020

Monday-Saturday: 6:00 a.m to 6:00 p.m Sunday: 6:00 a.m to 12:00 p.m

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

2 9 3 9


1 5 th A n n u a l

Best of Jackson Best Bakery; Best Breakfast: Primos Café

Best Barbecue; Best Pub Quiz/ Trivia Night: The Pig & Pint

Breakfast isn’t a food group, but it should be, and local restaurants like this year’s winner for Best Bakery and Best Breakfast, Primos Café, treats it as such. Primos serves its breakfast menu, which includes staples such as buttermilk pancakes, omelets, bacon, sausage and cheese grits, all day. The biscuits are pretty large, which means you probably won’t go hungry. For those who prefer the lighter side, Primos also has dishes such as granola, oatmeal or muffins. The restaurant also has breakfast catering, and knowing that breakfast awaits should make your morning commute to work less dreadful. If you’re in the mood for something sweeter, the bakery has three-layer cakes in a variety of flavors, including caramel, Italian cream and strawberry; oatmeal, chocolate chip and iced cookies; and treats such as cupcakes and fudge squares. —Amber Helsel

If you drive by The Pig & Pint on a Monday night, odds are you’ll see no open tables anywhere in sight. With music blasting and beer flowing, it’s pub-quiz night at the Fondren barbecue joint, and it’s popular. P&P’s pub quiz, which won the award for Best Pub Quiz/Trivia Night, is free to enter, and teams can have limitless members—plus the prizes include gift cards worth $50, $25 and $10. If you win first, that’s enough money (usually) to wipe your tab clean. P&P has more than just good quiz questions, though. Its barbecue took the crown again this year for Best Barbecue, and head chef Grant Hutcheson says it’s due to the competition-style methods they use. The restaurant only uses charcoal and wood-burning smokers to cook their meat, which includes ribs, pulled pork or chicken. Pork nachos, tacos and pulled pork are the top three sellers at P&P, Hutcheson says. Nachos are an easy thing to eat sitting around, and because there are no TVs, pub-quiz night makes for good conversations, eating and drinking. —Arielle Dreher

515 Lake Harbour Drive, Ridgeland, 601-898-3600; 2323 Lakeland Drive, Suite A, Flowood, 601-936-3398; primoscafe.com

3139 N. State St., 601-326-6070, pigandpint.com

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Best Bakery finalists: Broad Street Baking Company (4465 Interstate 55 N., Suite 101, 601-3622900, broadstbakery.com) / Campbell’s Bakery (3013 N. State St., 601-362-4628; 123 Jones St., Madison, 769-300-2790; campbellsbakery.ms) / La Brioche Patisserie (2906 N. State St., 601-9882299, labriochems.com) / Meme’s Brick Street Bakery (104 W. Leake St., Clinton, 601-278-0635)

Best Barbecue finalists: Chimneyville Smokehouse (970 High St., 601-3544665, chimneyville.com) / E&L Barbeque (1111 Bailey Ave., 601-355-5035) / Hickory Pit (1491 Canton Mart Road, 601-956-7079, hickorypitms.com) / Smokehouse BBQ (2227 Highway 471, Brandon, 601-829-0520) / Tay’s Barbeque (119 Colony Crossing Way, Suite 860, Madison, 601-853-0706, taysbbq.com)

Best Breakfast finalists: Beagle Bagel (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 145, 769-251-1892; 100 Mannsdale Park Drive, Madison, 601-856-4377) / Brent’s Drugs (655 Duling Ave., 601-366-3427) / Broad Street Baking Company (4465 Interstate 55 N., Suite 101, 601-362-2900) / The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen (1200 N. State St., Suite 100, 601-398-4562, themanshipjackson.com)

Best Pub Quiz/Trivia Night finalists: Capitol Grill (5050 Interstate 55 N., Suite F, 601-899-8845) / Fenian’s Pub (901 E. Fortification St., 601-948-0055) / Hal & Mal’s (200 S. Commerce St., 601-948-0888) / Library Lounge (Fairview Inn, 734 Fairview St., 601-948-3429) / Ole Tavern on George Street (416 George St., 601-960-2700)

Best Local French Fries: Rooster’s Restaurant Best Doughnuts: Shipley Do-Nuts

213 Promenade Blvd., 601-706-9236; 103 Highway 80 E., Clinton, 601-925-0020; shipleydonut.ws

About 20 years ago, Jacksonians got their first taste of Shipley when it opened in Clinton. In 2016, the business opened a second location in Flowood, so now people all over the metro area can try Shipley’s treats. The shop has 63 varieties on donuts. The yeast ones can come in the traditional glazed, or you can get them sprinkled or iced and topped with nuts, coconut, and sugar or cinnamon. For those who like filled doughnuts, try the apple-filled one or Bavarian. For those who don’t want doughnuts, Shipley also has treats such as beignets, cinnamon rolls and fruit pastries. —Amber Helsel and Dustin Cardon Finalists: Donut Palace (multiple locations) / Monroe’s Donuts and Bakery (multiple locations) / Pillow Donuts (1679 Old Fannin Road, Suite, D, Flowood, 601-992-6040; 707 Beau Pre Drive, Ridgeland, 601-790-9697)

2906 N. State St., 601-982-2001, roostersfondren.com

The best fries come in many forms: curly, wedge, steak frites and more. Rooster’s has often taken home the title of Best Local French Fries in Best of Jackson. On first glance, they may look pretty simple, but they pack a punch. The housemade fries are spiral cut in-house and then fried and seasoned with salt and pepper. They go great with many of the menu items, including the jalapeno cheese burger, and a fairly new dish, the Nashville hot chicken sliders. If you don’t want to just dip yours in ketchup, Rooster’s has sauces that go great with the fries such as the ranch or the restaurant’s famous comeback dressing. —Amber Helsel Finalists: Babalu Tapas & Tacos (622 Duling Ave., Suite 106, 601-366-5757, eatbabalu.com) / CAET Wine Bar (3100 N. State St., Suite 102, 601-321-9169, caetwinebar.com) / The Feathered Cow (4760 Interstate 55 N., 769-233-8366) / Keifer’s (120 N. Congress St., 601353-49756; 710 Poplar Blvd., 601-355-6825, keifers.net) / Saltine Oyster Bar (622 Duling Ave., Suite 201, 601-982-2899, saltinerestaurant.com)

Best Hangover Food; Outdoor Dining: Keifer’s

120 N. Congress St., 601-353-4976; 710 Poplar Blvd., 601-355-6825, keifers.net

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Hangovers are life’s way of reminding you that you may have made one too many bad decisions the previous day or night. And what do most people tend to crave in a hangover? Greasy food. This year’s Best Hangover Food and Outdoor Dining winner, Keifer’s, has plenty of dishes to choose from. The menu includes as felafel, which are garbanzo beans and cracked wheat ground down with spices and then deep fried, the grilled pita mozzarella or pita feta, and of course, the Keifer’s favorite, cottage fried potatoes, which 34 are slices of potatoes deep fried and served with the

restaurant’s feta dressing. The restaurants also have specials such as a mushroom burger or a bacon cheeseburger. Both locations have great outdoor dining, so you could recover from your night of debauchery while soaking in the sunshine. Make sure you wear sunglasses, though. Keifer’s in Belhaven is open Sunday through Thursday from 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Keifer’s downtown is open Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. —Amber Helsel

Best Hangover Food finalists: Babalu Tapas & Tacos (622 Duling Ave., Suite 106, 601-366-5757, eatbabalu.com) / Brent’s Drugs (655 Duling Ave., 601-366-3427) / The Feathered Cow (4760 Interstate 55 N., 769-233-8366) / Rooster’s Restaurant (2906 N. State St., 601-982-2001, roostersfondren.com) Best Outdoor Dining finalists: Anjou Restaurant (361 Township Ave., 601-707-0587) / Babalu Tapas & Tacos (622 Duling Ave., 601366-5757) / Burgers & Blues (1060 E. County Line Road, Suite 22, Ridgeland, 601-899-0038) / Green Ghost Tacos (1290 E. County Line Road, Ridgeland, 601-957-7436; 2801 N. State St., 601-203-2144) / The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen (1200 N. State St., Suite 100, 601398-4562) / Walker’s Drive In (3016 N. State St., 601-982-2633)


Join us for these and other upcoming events!

Thank You We’re so grateful and honored by your continued support.

February 21 ................. .BTRVFSBEF'Ă?UFEF$BSOBWBM8JOF%JOOFS March & April ....................... $SBXmTI'FBTU1MBUUFST$SBXmTI#PJM  1BUJP1BSUJFT&WFSZ'SJEBZ April 11 ........................................................... 5IF-BOE%PXO6OEFS%JOOFS  GFBUVSJOH"VTUSBMJBO8JOFT May 6 ......................................................... %FSCZ%JOOFSGFBUVSJOH#PVSCPO June 17 .................... 4FBTPOBM*UBMJBO4VNNFS-VODI$PPLJOH$MBTT Call for more information or to book reservations today! )JHIMBOE$PMPOZ1LXZt3JEHFMBOE 3FOBJTTBODFBU$PMPOZ1BSL


6 2 2 D U L I N G AV E . E AT




January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

March 18.......................................................... "NVTF#PVDIF$PPLJOH$MBTT


1 5 th A n n u a l

Best of Jackson Best Italian; Place for Dessert: Amerigo

Best Restaurant; Best Local Fine Dining: Walker’s Drive In

When you think of Italian food in the metro, Amerigo probably pops into your head. And these days, whether you’re in Ridgeland or Flowood, or as far away as Nashville, you can find the restaurant and its popular menu items. The menu features traditional Italian dishes and pastas, along with wine, beer and cocktails. While the tiramisu is the Amerigo’s most popular dessert, it has a secret weapon on the menu: the pecan butter crunch cake. It’s like a warm deconstructed apple pie with Granny Smith apples and vanilla ice cream on top. You can taste the real butter inside, and it’s delicious. If you’re not keen on a traditional desserts, try the tiramisu martini. It comes out in a chocolate-rimmed martini glass with the cocktail chilled in a separate glass on the side. Don’t want to commit to dinner? Amerigo has an early-bird happy-hour menu from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at both locations. —Dawn Dugle

While a lot has changed physically since Walker’s start as a drive-in restaurant in 1948, it still remains as one of the longest-standing restaurants in Jackson, and it still operates in its original location in Fondren. Over the years, Walker’s has won many Best of Jackson awards, now including one of this year’s new ones, Best Place for Local Fine Dining. The menu can infuse a little fanciness into your life with dishes such as the mile-high verde pork belly with roasted green chili, a soft poached egg and cornbread; barbecue fried oysters with warm brie cheese and an apple slaw; and a Wagyu hanger steak with bleu cheese fried fignerlings, shallot spinach and a red wine sauce. The restaurant’s lunch menu is smaller, but its dishes still pack a punch with the Walker’s Cobb Caesar with romaine lettuce, shaved turkey, bacon, feta, avocado, onions, tomatoes and croutons; and tamales with a sweet corn sauce, black-eyed pea hoppin’ John, pico de gallo and chipotle sour cream. —Amber Helsel

6592 Old Canton Road, 601-977-0563; 155 Market St., Flowood, 601-992-1550; amerigo.net

courtesy Amerigo

Best Italian Restaurant finalists: BRAVO! Italian Restaurant & Bar (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 244, 601-982-8111, bravobuzz.com) / Cerami’s Italian Restaurant (5417 Lakeland Drive, 601-919-2829, ceramisitalian.com) / Fratesi’s Authentic Italian Cuisine (910 Lake Harbour Drive, Ridgeland, 601-956-2929, fratesis.com) / Sal & Mookie’s New York Pizza & Ice Cream Joint (565 Taylor St., 601-368-1919, salandmookies.com) Best Place for Dessert finalists: Char Restaurant (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 142, 601-956-9562, charrestaurant.com) / Deep South Pops (1800 N. State St., 601398-2174; 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 173, 601-398-0623; deepsouthpops.com) / La Brioche Patisserie (2906 N. State St., 601-988-2299, labriochems.com) / Lou’s Full-Serv (904B E. Fortification St., 601-487-6359, lousfullserv.com) / Taste Bistro & Desserts (5419 Highway 25, Suite L, Flowood, 769-235-6232, tastebistroanddesserts.com)

Best Chinese Food: Ichiban Chinese Buffet

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

359 Ridge Way, Flowood, 601-919-8879; 433 Riverwind Drive, Pearl, 601-706-2833; ichibanbuffetms.com


Ichiban stands as one of the Jackson metro area staples. It’s been around for years and never seems to slow down, as brother-sister duo Kam and Ling Ngai have honed their craft. Both the buffet and Ichiban Hibachi & Sushi now have locations in Flowood and Pearl. The buffet has every kind of Asian food (and other food) imaginable, including barbecue meatballs, snow-crab legs, black-pepper chicken, General Tso’s chicken, chicken tacos and Korean noodles—and a line dedicated to Blue Bell ice cream. For those who want sushi with their buffet, Ichiban also has a sushi bar near the back. The layout of the buffet flows nicely, so you’re never stuck in one place for too long. Ichiban Chinese Buffet in Flowood is open Monday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. The restaurant is also open for dinner Sunday through Thursday from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. —Amber Helsel Finalists: China Belle (1855 Lakeland Drive, 601-368-9588) / Hong Kong Tea House (4924 Interstate 55 N., 601-368-8623) / Hunan Wok Carry Out (6556 Old Canton Road, 601-956-8988) / Mr. Chen’s Restaurant (5465 Interstate 55 N., 601-978-1865) / Wok 2 Go (1030 E. Peace St., Canton, 601-859-0076)

3016 N. State St., 601-982-2633, walkersdrivein.com

Best Restaurant finalists: Babalu Tapas & Tacos (622 Duling Ave., Suite 106, 601-3665757, eatbabalu.com) / BRAVO! Italian Restaurant & Bar (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 244, 601-982-8111, bravobuzz.com) / The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen (1200 N. State St., Suite 100, 601-398-4562) / Parlor Market (115 W. Capitol St., 601-360-0090, parlormarket.com) / Saltine Oyster Bar (622 Duling Ave., Suite 201, 601-982-2899, saltinerestaurant.com) Best Local Fine Dining finalists: Char Restaurant (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 142, 601-956-9562, charrestaurant.com) / The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen (1200 N. State St., Suite 100, 601-398-4562, themanshipjackson. com) / Parlor Market (115 W. Capitol St., 601-360-0090, parlormarket.com) / Shapley’s (868 Centre St., Ridgeland, 601-957-3753, shapleysrestaurant.com) / Table 100 (100 Ridge Way, Flowood, 601-420-4202, tableonehundred.com)

Best Local Burger: Mugshots Grill & Bar 4245 Lakeland Drive, Flowood, 601-932-4031; 879 Lake Harbour Drive, Ridgeland, 601-978-1972; mugshotsgrillandbar.com

While Mugshots Bar and Grill has a selection of nearly two dozen burgers, Cliff Russum, who owns the Flowood location, says his personal favorite is the comeback burger. “It’s a burger with its own housemade comeback sauce prepared fresh daily with a different sort of kick to it,” Russum says. The burger also has pepperjack cheese, bacon and an onion ring. His other picks include the McDonald burger, Anthony’s peanut butter burger, and the new macaroni and cheese burger, which is a patty between two grilled-cheese sandwiches topped with bacon and macaroni and cheese. —Dustin Cardon Finalists: Babalu Tapas & Tacos (622 Duling Ave., Suite 106, 601-366-5757, eatbabalu. com) / Burgers & Blues (1060 E. County Line Road, Suite 22, Ridgeland, 601-8990038, burgersblues.com) / Cool Al’s (4654 McWillie Drive, 601-713-3020) / Rooster’s Restaurant (2906 N. State St., 601-982-2001, roostersfondren.com) / Stamps Super Burgers (1801 Dalton St., 601-352-4555)

Best Brunch: Table 100

100 Ridge Way, Flowood, 601-4204202, tableonehundred.com

Over the last couple of years, brunch has taken a strong foothold in Jackson, with restaurants working to make the midmeal an experience unto itself. This year, voters chose Table 100 for Best Brunch. The restaurant offers two different types of brunch on the weekend. On Saturdays is the Shoppers Brunch, which starts at 11 a.m., and on Sundays beginning at 10:30 a.m., guests can attend the Jazz Brunch, during which the musicians move throughout the restaurant playing. Dishes include the Table 100 breakfast, which features grits, farm greens, a ham-hock jus, applewood-smoked bacon, two fried eggs and buttermilk biscuits. Table 100 also has a build-your-own bloody Mary or bubbly bar. —Dawn Dugle

Finalists: Babalu Tapas & Tacos (622 Duling Ave., Suite 106, 601-366-5757) / BRAVO! Italian Restaurant & Bar (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 244, 601-982-8111) / Char Restaurant (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 142, 601-956-9562) / The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen (1200 N. State St., Suite 100, 601398-4562) / Saltine Oyster Bar (622 Duling Ave., Suite 201, 601-982-2899)

Are you a finalist? Didn’t get your party invitation? Email mary@jacksonfreepress.com or call 601-362-6121 x25

JFPmenus.com Paid advertising section. Call 601-362-6121 x11 to list your restaurant

Best Lunch Counter or Buffet; Soul Food: Mama Hamil’s Southern Cookin’ & BBQ


751 Highway 51, Madison, 601-856-4407, hamils.com

courtesy Mama Hamils

From its quaint start in a small cabin in 1977, Mama Hamil’s has grown into something not-to-miss in the Jackson metro area. At the restaurant, you can get dishes such as fried chicken, smoked chicken, barbecue ribs, chicken and dumplings, fried livers and meat loaf, though the specials depend on the day. To go with the main course, Mama Hamil’s also has dishes such as barbecue beans, blackeyed peas, mashed potatoes with gravy, and dressing on Fridays. For dessert, try Mama Hamil’s take on southern staples such as the bread pudding, pecan pie, and even vanilla soft-serve ice cream. For an adult, the lunch price is $9.34 and only goes up a few dollars for dinner. Mama Hamil’s is open Monday through Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., and Thursday through Saturday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. —Amber Helsel Best Lunch Counter or Buffet finalists: Ichiban Chinese Buffet (359 Ridge Way, Flowood, 601-919-8879; 433 Riverwind Drive, Pearl, 601-706-2833; ichibanbuffetms. com) / McDade’s Markets (Multiple locations, mcdadesmarkets.com) / Primos CafÊ (515 Lake Harbour Drive, Ridgeland, 601-898-3600; 2323 Lakeland Drive, Suite A, Flowood, 601-936-3398; primoscafe.com) / Spice Avenue (4711 Interstate 55 N., 601-982-0890) / Two Sisters’ Kitchen (707 N. Congress St., 601-353-1180)

Wing Wars Champions. Freshly prepared food that’s never frozen. 360 degree view of sports on 16 HD TV’s

Bonfire Grill 4FSWJDF%S4VJUF #SBOEPOt Locally owned and operated restaurant specializing in handcrafted burgers and authentic New Orleans style po-boys.

Fenian’s Pub &'PSUJmDBUJPO4U +BDLTPOt Classic Irish pub featuring a menu of traditional food, pub sandwiches & Irish beers on tap.

Green Room #PVOET4U+BDLTPO.4t We’re still #1! Best Place to Play Pool - Best of Jackson 2016

Hal and Mal’s 4$PNNFSDF4U +BDLTPOt Pub favorites meet Gulf Coast and Cajun specialties like red beans and rice, the Oyster Platter or daily specials.

Martin’s Restaurant and Lounge 4PVUI4UBUF4U +BDLTPOt Lunch specials, pub appetizers or order from the full menu of po-boys and entrees. Full bar, beer selection.


Best Soul Food finalists: Bully’s Restaurant (3118 Livingston Road, 601-362-0484) / Gloria’s Carryout (972 Mayes St., 601-362-0009) / Pearl’s Southern Cooking (3505 Terry Road, 601-372-2100) / Two Sisters’ Kitchen (707 N. Congress St., 601-353-1180)

Cinco De Mayo -BLF)BSCPVS%S 3JEHFMBOEt We pride ourselves on fresh, authentic Mexican food as well as atmosphere and guest satisfaction.

Tacos, burritos and quesadillas. Tex-Mex at its finest and freshest.


2807 Old Canton Road, 601-366-1602, rainbowcoop.org

In this day and age, it can be hard to eat healthy, whether you’re an omnivore or an herbivore. Luckily, local places such as Rainbow Co-Op have many options. The aisles of the grocery store have everything from local produce and products such as Sweet & Sauer’s kombucha and sauerkraut to buy-by-weight products such as flour and beans to healthy frozen foods. And memberships to Rainbow are now free. Just inside Rainbow Plaza is High Noon CafÊ, Jackson’s premier vegetarian restaurant. Each day, it has specials such as High Noon curry, pizza and the restaurant’s famous seaside cakes on Fridays, which are seaweed, tofu and onion patties breaded with panko crumbs and then baked. The restaurant also has a Plant-Based Potluck every second Saturday of the month, so you can join others in eating a little healthier. Rainbow is open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. High Noon is open Monday through Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. —Amber Helsel

Eslava’s Grille Eslava’s Grille -BLFMBOE%S 'MPXPPEt

Best Vegetarian Food finalists: Aladdin Mediterranean Grill (730 Lakeland Drive, 601366-6033, aladdininjackson.com) / Babalu Tapas & Tacos (622 Duling Ave., 601-366-5757, eatbabalu.com) / BRAVO! Italian Restaurant & Bar (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 244, 601-9828111, bravobuzz.com) / freshii (748 MacKenzie Lane, Flowood, 601-718-0020, freshii.com/us)


Best Place for Healthy Food finalists: Aladdin Mediterranean Grill (730 Lakeland Drive, 601-366-6033, aladdininjackson.com) / Babalu Tapas & Tacos (622 Duling Ave., Suite 106, 601-366-5757, eatbabalu.com) / Crossroads CafĂŠ (398 Highway 51, Ridgeland, 601-790-7141) freshii (748 MacKenzie Lane, Flowood, 601-718-0020, freshii.com/us)

Freshii .BD,FO[JF-O 'MPXPPEt Eat. Energize. That’s our motto. Serving up made to-order burritos, soups, fresh salads and much more.

STEAK & SEAFOOD Ellis Seafood .FBEPXCSPPL3E +BDLTPOt 88PPESPX8JMTPO"WFt&MMJT"WF Serving Jackson over 25 years with our freshly fried seafood and boiled cajun shrimp, snow crab legs, and seasonal crawfish.

Seafood, Steaks and Pasta

Seafood, steaks and pastas with a Latin influence.

T’Beaux’s serves up fresh seafood including oysters, shrimp and crab legs and the best crawfish this side of Louisiana.

MEDITERRANEAN/GREEK Aladdin Mediterranean Grill -BLFMBOE%S +BDLTPOt Delicious authentic dishes including lamb dishes, hummus, falafel, kababs, shwarma.

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Best Vegetarian Options; Place for Healthy Food: High Noon Cafe, Rainbow Natural Grocery Cooperative

Jaco’s Tacos 44UBUF4U +BDLTPOt


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Best of Jackson Best Crawfish: T’Beaux’s Crawfish and Catering

941 Highway 80 E., Clinton, 601-831-7778; 5252-B Terry Road, Byram, 769-230-3855; tbeauxs.com

It’s officially crawfish season, which means people are starting to have crawfish boils. This year’s winner, T’Beaux’s Crawfish and Catering, is a family-owned restaurant and caterer with three locations in the metro area. Clinton, which is a take-out only location, serves boiled crawfish and seafood, along with gumbo and tamales. The Byram location, which is also take-out only, adds fried seafood, po’boys and burgers to its menu. If you find yourself in Pocahontas, the location there has appetizers such as ’gator bites get and Hereford steaks on Friday and Saturday evenings. The Pocahontas location has live music on Friday and Saturday. Beer is available, though patrons must bring their own wine and spirits (there is a $5 corking fee). —Jan M. Richardson Finalists: The Crawdad Hole (1150 Lakeland Drive, 601-9829299) / The Crawfish Hut (6956 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland, 601-956-3474) / Mudbugs (1299 Old Fannin Road, Brandon, 601-992-5225; 151 W. Government St., Suite D, Brandon, 601706-4751; mudbugscrawfish.com) / Sal & Phil’s Seafood & Lounge (6600 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland, 601-957-1188)

Best Thai: Surin of Thailand

3000 Old Canton Road, Suite 105, 601-981-3205

Surin boasts many locations across the southeast, but since it opened in the old Nick’s restaurant location a couple of summers ago, it has become Fondren’s premier destination for Asian cuisine and readers’ choice in many contests for Thai food in Jackson. The restaurant features traditional Thai mainstays such as rice noodle dishes, coconut soup and an array of curries. However, Surin also boasts a sushi bar for a little taste of Japan for good measure. The restaurant also has an extensive drink menu, which features a well-rounded wine list and some adventurous martinis (try the Mississippi sipper, which has St. Germaine and grapefruit, or the wedding cake martini to sate your sweet tooth). Affordable lunch options mean that you don’t have to break the bank to spice things up, either. —Alex Thiel Finalists: Fusion Japanese & Thai Cuisine (1002 Treetops Boulevard, Flowood, 601-664-7588; 1030 Highway 51, Madison, 601-790-7999; fusionjackson.com) / Thai Tasty (5050 Parkway Drive, Suite 7, 601-540-2534) / Thai House (closed)

Best Gumbo: Gumbo Girl 5681 Highway 18 W., 601-790-0486, gumbogirl.com

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

111 Colony Way, Suite 130, Madison, 601-898-3330; 223 Ridge Way, Flowood, 601-919-1900; georgiablue.net


courtesy Gumbogirl

Best Plate Lunch: Georgia Blue

Best Sandwich Place: Room Service

4659 McWillie Drive, 601-362-4617; 1020 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 104, 601-707-3600; roomservicejackson.com

Hays Thompson, who owns Jackson staple Room Service, got his start in 1986, preparing family recipes from scratch daily and personally selling them door-to-door on foot. Since then, Room Service has grown into a catering service that features more than 30 sandwiches and salads, and more than 20 types of dressing. “We’ve been here so long (that) our regulars just can’t eat anything else,” Thompson says. “People can taste the freshness here. We’ve got a guy here who just boils and peels eggs fresh every day, another who cuts lettuce and so on. … Anything that goes in our food is as fresh as possible and prepared entirely here.” Of all the sandwiches Room Service offers, Thompson says the Uptown sandwich is his favorite. “I love it because it’s just so different,” Thompson says. “Where else are you going to find blue cheese, candied pecans and dried cranberries on a sandwich?” —Dustin Cardon Finalists: Basil’s (2906 N. State St., Suite 104, 601-982-2100; 120 N. Congress St., Suite L1, 601-944-9888) / Beagle Bagel (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 145, 769-251-1892; 100 Mannsdale Park Drive, Madison, 601-856-4377; thebeaglebagelcafe. com) / Broad Street Baking Company (4465 Interstate 55 N., Suite 101, 601-362-2900, broadstbakery.com) / Newk’s Eatery (multiple locations, newks.com) / Signa’s Grille (680 Highway 51, Suite E., Ridgeland, 601-853-0266)

Best Wine List: CAET Wine Bar 3100 N. State St., Suite 102, 601321-9169, caetwinebar.com

Few staples of southern cuisine are as revered as the “blue plate special,” and few places in Jackson do it justice like Georgia Blue. The classic “meat and three” is served at lunch Sunday through Friday, and at dinner Monday through Thursday. The specials are made fresh daily and are in constant rotation, in traditional blue-plate fashion. The restaurant has blue-plate specials such as boneless fried porkchops with gravy on Wednesdays and fried catfish on Fridays. Sides such as grits, fried green tomatoes and sweet potato fries are available every day, and are welcome sights to the picky southern palate. With metro area locations in Madison and Flowood, there’s no excuse not to put Georgia Blue to the test. And if, for some reason, blue plates aren’t your thing, live music and funky twists on southern dishes (deep-fried shrimp and grits balls, anyone?) might tantalize you. —Alex Thiel

James Kithuka will tell you that his wife Marilyn’s gumbo recipe has a unique secret ingredient: her passion. “She is definitely, definitely passionate,” Kithuka says of his wife, adding that she only started selling her dish after those around her encouraged her. “It’s something that was definitely pushed by family and friends.” In November 2016, Marilyn and her husband celebrated their two-year anniversary at their Gumbo Girl location. More than anything, Kithuka said that the best way to find out why Jackson voted their gumbo the best in town is to grab a bowl for yourself. Their house version of the dish, surf and turf, includes Gulf shrimp, blue crab, crawfish, sausage, chicken and okra. —Tim Summers Jr.

Finalists: Char Restaurant (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 142, 601-956-9562, charrestaurant.com) / McDade’s Markets (Multiple locations, mcdadesmarkets.com) / Primos Café (515 Lake Harbour Drive, Ridgeland, 601-898-3600; 2323 Lakeland Drive, Suite A, Flowood, 601-936-3398; primoscafe.com) / The Trace Grill (574 Highway 51 N., Suite F, Ridgeland, 601-853-1014, thetracegrill.com) / Walker’s Drive In (3016 N. State St., 601982-2633, walkersdrivein.com)

Finalists: Char Restaurant (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 142, 601-956-9562, charrestaurant.com) / Hal & Mal’s (200 Commerce St., 601-948-0888, halandmals.com) / Saltine Oyster Bar (622 Duling Ave., Suite 201, 601-982-2899, saltinerestaurant.com) / Seafood R’evolution (1000 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 9015, 601-853-3474, seafoodrevolution.com) / T’Beaux’s Crawfish and Catering (941 Highway 80 E., Clinton, 601-831-7778; 5252-B Terry Road, Byram, 769-2303855; tbeauxs.com)

Having only been open for a little more than two years, this year’s winner for Best Wine Selection, CAET Wine Bar, has become a staple for drinks and dining in the Fondren area. The bar uses a wine preservation system called Napa Technology, which uses argon gas to plug and preserve wine, which lets CAET keep an open bottle good for up to 60 days. “This allows us to have both different varietal that people aren’t used to drinking and more expensive wines for sale by the glass,” General Manager Elise Grenley says. Part of what makes CAET so popular, Grenley says, is the variety it offers. “The fact that someone can come in who wants a Budweiser, and the person with them can get a $40 glass of wine is really great,” she says. —Tyler Edwards Finalists: BRAVO! Italian Restaurant & Bar (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 244, 601-982-8111, bravobuzz.com) / Char Restaurant (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 142, 601-956-9562, charrestaurant.com) / The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen (1200 N. State St., Suite 100, 601-398-4562, themanshipjackson.com) / Seafood R’evolution (1000 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 9015, 601-853-3474, seafoodrevolution.com) / Table 100 (100 Ridge Way, Flowood, 601-420-4202, tableonehundred.com)


Best Kid’s Hangout Best Museum Best Tourist Attraction JOINT FINALIST FOR

Kid’s Event: Park After Dark

fi na lis t! Thank you for m ak in g us a

www.mschildrensmuseum.org • 601.981.5469 • Jackson, MS This project is partially funded through a grant by Visit Jackson.


JFP BestOf 2017 MCM 4.5x5.875.indd 1

1/23/17 3:50 PM



Since 1972, Millsaps College has oered to the Greater Jackson community a variety of opportunities through the Community Enrichment Series. These are noncredit courses which have no prerequisites and no examinations and cover a variety of special interest areas. Enrichment courses are available in the fall, winter and spring. The Winter Enrichment courses are happening now.


Since the 1960s, Millsaps College has oered the Arts & Lecture Series to the Greater Jackson community bringing unique programs of music, literary and current events, history, and more to the area. Upcoming programs include: An Evening of Latin Guitar Music with David Burgess on Tuesday, February 21; The Asylum Hill Consortium: Bioscience, the Humanities, and Opportunity on Tuesday, March 21; and The Russell Welch Hot Gypsy Jazz Quartet on Tuesday, April 25.


Millsaps College oers summer enrichment camps for youth that appeal to academic and creative interests. Millsaps faculty as well as experts in the community serve as instructors for the camps. For more information, go to millsaps.edu/community-courses or call 601-974-1130.





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January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms



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Best of Jackson Best Local Pizza: Pizza Shack 925 E. Fortification St., 601-352-2001; 219 Garden Park Drive, Madison, 601-8568600; thepizzashackjackson.com

Pizza Shack brought its pies to the table for the first time in 2005, and ever since, it has been one of the finest expressions of self-proclaimed “Mississippi-style” pizzas in Jackson. This year, it won the title of Best Local Pizza. The restaurant has in-house recipes for sauces and dough, which add to the experience. Stop by the Fortification or Madison locations to enjoy classics such as the Margarita pizza with fresh roma tomatoes, garlic and basil. For the meat eaters, there’s the carnivore, which has pepperoni, sausage, beef and two types of bacon. The restaurant also has some unconventional pizzas worth trying, such as the double cheeseburger, which has cheddar sauce, beef, American cheese, shredded cheddar, pickles and onion, and the Thai chicken pizza, which has a Thai peanut sauce, carrots, onions and green onion. —Brynn Corbello Finalists: Lost Pizza Co. (1220 E. Northside Drive, Suite 230, 769-243-7478; 500 Highway 51, Ridgeland, 769-300-3116; 1392 W. Government St., Brandon, 601-824-5515; lostpizza. com) / The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen (1200 N. State St., Suite 100, 601-398-4562, themanshipjackson.com) / Sal & Mookie’s New York Pizza & Ice Cream Joint (565 Taylor St., 601-368-1919, salandmookies.com) / Soulshine Pizza Factory (1111 Highland Colony Parkway, Suite 1, Ridgeland, 601-8568646; 5352 Highway 25, Suite 1100, Flowood, 601-919-2000)

Place to Get Coffee: Cups Espresso Café

Best Place for Oysters: Saltine Oyster Bar

Multiple locations; cupsespressocafe.com

Jacksonians love their coffee. That’s old news to anyone who lived in the capital city when Janice and Dennis Cameron opened the first Cups Espresso Café location in Fondren in 1993, and watched the small coffee shop grow into the local franchise it is today. Now, the metro area alone has about 11 Cups coffeehouses. One of the reasons that the franchise is a perennial winner for Best Place to Get Coffee is that many customers have embraced a specific location as “their Cups”—the one they’ll even go out of their way to visit in order to get a signature drink, such as a Blondie or Brunette, or just a drip coffee. And like all the best local coffee shops, every Cups has a personality and uniqueness that the big chains just can’t capture. —Micah Smith Finalists: Deep South Pops (1800 N. State St., 601-398-2174; 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 173, 601-398-0623; deepsouthpops. com) / Fusion Coffeehouse (1111 Highland Colony Pkwy., Ridgeland, 601-856-6001, fusioncoffeehouse.com) M7 Coffee House (111 N. Wheatley St., Ridgeland, 601-790-7971) / Mocha Mugs (multiple locations, mochamugs.com) / Sneaky Beans (2914 N. State St., 601-487-6349, sneakybeans.com)

Best Sushi/Japanese: Nagoya Japanese Sushi Bar

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms


Finalists Char Restaurant (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 142, 601-956-9562, charrestaurant.com) / Mama Hamil’s Southern Cookin’ & BBQ (751 Highway 51, Madison, 601-856-4407; hamils.com) / Primos Café (515 Lake Harbour Drive, Ridgeland, 601-898-3600; 2323 Lakeland Drive, Suite A, Flowood, 601-936-3398; primoscafe.com) / Rooster’s Restaurant (2906 N. State St., 601-982-2001, roostersfondren.com) / Table 100 (100 Ridge Way, Flowood, 420-4202, tableonehundred.com)

The metro area isn’t short on sushi options, but this year’s winner for Best Sushi/Japanese, Nagoya Japanese Sushi Bar, has been at it for a while. The restaurant, which has locations in Jackson and Madison, offers a variety of great Japanese dishes, specialty cocktails, beer and wine, but its raw and cooked sushi rolls are Nagoya’s biggest draw. While customers can certainly order their favorites from the long list of classics that the restaurant serves up, Nagoya dedicated two pages of its menu to specialty rolls. One of the most popular sushi dishes is the Nagoya roll, which has tuna, crabmeat, cream cheese and avocado. It’s then encased in seaweed wrap and deep-fried. —Dawn Dugle Finalists: Bonsai Japanese Steakhouse (1925 Lakeland Drive, 601-981-0606; 102 Clinton Center Drive, Clinton, 601924-4448, bonsaijxn.com) / Edo Japanese Restaurant (5834 Ridgewood Road, Suite C, 601-899-8518) / Ichiban Hibachi & Sushi (153 Ridge Way, Flowood, 601-919-0097, ichibangrillms.com) / Little Tokyo (876 Avery Blvd. N., Ridgeland, 601-991-3800) / Sakura Bana (4800 Interstate 55 N., Suite 11, 601-982-3035, sakurabanajackson.com)

Finalists Drago’s Seafood Restaurant (1005 E. County Line Road, 601-957-1515, dragosrestaurant.com) / Half Shell Oyster House (115 Laurel Park Cove, Suite 105, Flowood, 769-2577586, halfshelloysterhouse.com) / Seafood R’evolution (1000 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 9015, 601-853-3474, seafoodrevolution.com) / Shucker’s Oyster Bar (116 Conestoga Road, Ridgeland, 601-853-0105, shuckersontherez.com)

868 Centre St., Ridgeland, 601-957-3753, shapleysrestaurant.com File Photo

707 N. Congress St., 601-353-1180

At Two Sisters’ Kitchen, customers can enjoy the Mississippi sunshine, sitting in the rockers outside while the cooks create a dish that regularly nabs Two Sisters’ a Best of Jackson award. This year, the restaurant has once again taken the title of 2017’s Best Fried Chicken. To make the restaurant’s take on the classic southern dish, co-owner Diann Irving Alford removes the skin from fresh chicken, frying it for 12 minutes before it goes out to the buffet for customers to enjoy. The restaurant has been serving up fried chicken on its buffet since 1989. The dish even earned Two Sisters’ national media attention, featured on Travel Channel’s “Man v. Food Nation” and on blogs such as FoodAndWine.com. If you’re hoping to enjoy a southern staple like fried chicken, Two Sisters’ Congress Street location, built in 1909 in Victorian style, is a nice setting for it. —Brynn Corbello

Saltine Oyster Bar prides itself not only on its oyster selection, but on its friendly service and atmosphere. “When people come to eat oysters they love to sit at the bar and talk to the oyster shuckers, and we have quite a few regulars,” Executive Chef Nicole Medrano says. This year’s winner for Best Place for Oysters likes to keep a variety on-hand, with Gulf oysters and a selection from both the east and west coast always available in the restaurant. In addition, Saltine offers Blue Point oysters, for $1 each, from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. every day for happy hour. On the other side of the bar is the oyster-shucking area, so you can watch people shuck oysters as you enjoy a drink. “We always want to give our guests the best variety we can,” Medrano says. —Tyler Edwards

Best Steak: Shapley’s

6351 Interstate 55 N., Suite 131, 601-977-8881; 111 Colony Crossing, Suite 380, Madison, 601-856-5678

Best Local Fried Chicken: Two Sisters’ Kitchen

622 Duling Ave., Suite 201, 601-982-2899, saltinerestaurant.com

Over the last 19 years, husband-and-wife duo Julie and Scott Koestler, owners of Shapley’s, have remained committed to providing a great dining experience that goes beyond their steaks, which voters selected as this year’s Best Steak. “We are a well-oiled machine, so everyone really knows their role,” Julie says of the restaurant. “We have a hands-on approach as owners, but we have an amazing staff, with some employees being there for over 20 years. ... We have very little turnover and a great family atmosphere, and we are committed to consistency in our guests’ dining experience while always trying to improve.” The Ridgeland restaurant’s steak selection features a variety of cuts such as filet, ribeye, New York strip and Porterhouse. Julie says that the secret to Shapley’s steak isn’t much of a secret: “(It’s) a combination of seasoning, cooking and getting great quality meat.” Shapley’s also features seafood, chicken, salads, appetizers and side orders such as potatoes, peas, asparagus and garlic toast to complement every entree option. She also says customers can expect some new additions to the menu soon, such as side orders of onion rings, Brussels sprouts, sautéed spinach and steamed vegetables. —Greg Pigott Finalists: Char Restaurant (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 142, 601-956-9562, charrestaurant.com) / ELY’s Restaurant & Bar (115 W. Jackson St., Suite 2E, Ridgeland, 601-605-6359, elysrestaurant.com) / Kathryn’s Steakhouse (6800 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland, 601-956-2803,kathrynssteaks.com) / Tico’s Steak House (1536 E. County Line Road, Ridgeland, 601-956-1030, ticossteakhouse.com) / Walker’s Drive In (3016 N. State St., 601-982-2633, walkersdrivein.com)

Are you a finalist? Didn’t get your party invitation? Email mary@jacksonfreepress.com or call 601-362-6121 x25

JFPmenus.com Paid advertising section. Call 601-362-6121 x11 to list your restaurant


The first Half Shell Oyster House opened in Gulfport in 2009, with a Biloxi location following two years later. Within the last couple of years, Half Shell opened its first location in the metro area. “We bring the New Orleans out of New Orleans,â€? boasts Jordan Carlson, manager of that location. “There are a lot of places in the area that do oysters, but we’re so proud of our oysters. We do a lot of competitions, in other states, even.â€? The menu includes a wide selection of Gulf oysters; appetizers such as fried green tomatoes and crabcakes with a lemon aioli and crab ravigotte; lobster quesadillas with white American cheese, peppers, pico de gallo, avocado; avocado lime ranch and served with sour cream; and dishes such as herb-encrusted grouper over a bed of sautĂŠed spinach and topped with lemon-butter cream and jumbo lumb crab meat. —Alex Thiel

1908 Provisions 'BJSWJFX4U +BDLTPO .4t

Finalists: Drago’s Seafood Restaurant (1005 E. County Line Road, 601-957-1515, dragosrestaurant.com) / Sal & Phil’s Seafood & Lounge (6600 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland, 601-957-1188) / Saltine Oyster Bar (622 Duling Ave., Suite 201, 601-982-2899, saltinerestaurant.com) / Seafood R’evolution (1000 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 9015, 601-853-3474, seafoodrevolution.com) / Walker’s Drive In (3016 N. State St., 601-982-2633, walkersdrivein.com)

Experience traditional Southern flavors with an up-scale twist. Relax with family and friends, or enjoy a special night out.

The Iron Horse Grill 81FBSM4U +BDLTPOt The smell of charcoal greets you, the music carries you inside.

The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen /4UBUF4U +BDLTPOt The Manship transforms the essence of Mediterranean food while maintaining a southern flair.

Parlor Market 8$BQJUPM4U +BDLTPOt Seasonal Southern cuisine using fresh, local products in a beautifully appointed restaurant and fantastic service.

Two Sisters Kitchen /$POHSFTT4U Southern-style lunch buffet. Mon-Fri, Sun.

Best Meal Under $10: Newk’s Eatery Multiple locations, newks.com

If your stomach is growling, and you’ve got $10, you can go to Newk’s Eatery. Don Newcomb, Debra Bryson and Chris Newcomb founded the business in Oxford in 2004 with a desire to share their own tried-and-true Newcomb family recipes. The business expanded to the metro area with its Flowood store in 2006 and has continued to add locations throughout Mississippi and now the South. For carry-out, visit the grab-n-go counter or dine in to enjoy the atmosphere of this fast-casual restaurant, which has everything from soups to salads to sandwiches to pizzas and more. The menu has dishes under $10 such as the “Newk’s Favorite,� which has ingredients such as grilled chicken, croutons, dried cranberries and sherry vinaigrette at $9.25, or soup and sandwich pairings at $8.59. —Brynn Corbello

ASIAN Fusion Japanese and Thai Cuisine 5SFFUPQT#MWE 'MPXPPEt ")XZ .BEJTPOt Specializing in fresh Japanese and Thai cuisine, our extensive menu features everything from curries to fresh sushi.

Surin of Thailand 0ME$BOUPO3E  +BDLTPOt Jackson’s Newest Authentic Thai & Sushi Bar with 26 signature martini’s and extensive wine list.

Finalists: Aladdin Mediterranean Grill (730 Lakeland Drive, 601-366-6033, aladdininjackson. com) / Basil’s (2906 N. State St., Suite 104, 601-982-2100; 120 N. Congress St., Suite L1, 601-9449888) / Bully’s Restaurant (3118 Livingston Road, 601-362-0484) / McDade’s Markets (Multiple locations, mcdadesmarkets.com) / Primos CafÊ (515 Lake Harbour Drive, Ridgeland, 601-8983600; 2323 Lakeland Drive, Suite A, Flowood, 601-936-3398; primoscafe.com)

Best Place for Hummus: Aladdin Mediterranean Grill

BARBEQUE Chimneyville Smoke House )JHI4U +BDLTPOt Family style barbecue restaurant and catering service in the heart of downtown Jackson.

E & L Barbeque #BJMFZ"WF +BDLTPOt Serving BBQ to Jackson for over 25 years, we smoke every rib, tip and link and top it with our award winning BBQ sauce!

730 Lakeland Drive, 601-366-6033, aladdininjackson.com

Good hummus can be many things: appetizer, side dish, condiment or even a whole meal. But lately, let’s be frank, there are so many variations, additions and riffs on it that it can be hard to recognize sometimes. At Aladdin Mediterranean Grill, though, it’s classic. The only choice to make is between white or wheat pita bread, which arrives so warm, thick and soft that it’s a comfort. If you get takeout, it stays equally warm and soft rolled cozily in its aluminum foil blanket until you’re home. And the hummus itself? Smooth and creamy, garlicky, neither too thick or thin, and topped with a pool of olive oil and a dusting of herbs. Whether you’re enjoying the new enclosed patio or taking some home, friendly staff serves it up quickly. Just don’t forget to get a reward card; you’ll be back for more, earning credit toward future purchases each time you dine. —Dustin Cardon Finalists: Keifer’s (120 N. Congress St., 601-353-49756; 710 Poplar Blvd., 601-355-6825, keifers. net) / Babalu Tapas & Tacos (622 Duling Ave., Suite 106, 601-366-5757, eatbabalu.com) / Krilakis (207 W. Jackson St., Suite D, Ridgeland, 601-790-9463; krilakis.com)

Hickory Pit $BOUPO.BSU3E +BDLTPOt The “Best Butts in Townâ€? features BBQ chicken, beef and pork along with burgers and po’boys.

The Pig and Pint /4UBUF4U +BDLTPOt Winner of Best of Jackson 2016 “Best BBQ.â€? Serving competition-style BBQ and a great beer selection.

Smokin’ South BBQ 41FBS0SDIBSE3E 3JEHFMBOEt “This BBQ is as good as any I’ve eaten judging Memphis in May for 18 years. For great BBQ, this is the placeâ€?- Jerry Vaughn

681 S. PEAR ORCHARD RD. RIDGELAND 769.300.2500 - smokinsouthbbqms.com 769.300.2500

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Best Seafood: Half Shell Oyster House

115 Laurel Park Cove, Suite 105, Flowood, 769-257-7586, halfshelloysterhouse.com


1 5 th A n n u a l

Best of Jackson

Are you a finalist? Didn’t get your party invitation? Email mary@jacksonfreepress.com or call 601-362-6121 x25

Best Kids’ Hangout; Best Museum: Mississippi Children’s Museum

Best Reason to Live in Jackson; Best Tourist Attraction: Fondren

2145 Museum Blvd., 601-981-5469, mschildrensmuseum.org


courtesy Mississippi Children’s Museum

Both learning and playing are valuable experiences for kids, and it’s always a bonus when you can get them to learn while playing. The Mississippi Children’s Museum combines both experiences into one package. The museum has exhibits such as the World at Work Gallery, which is the museum’s science, technology and industry gallery. It lets kids explore the careers and industries that are vital to the state’s economy such as construction, forestry and engineering; the Healthy Fun Gallery, which has areas such as one that lets visitors move a skeleton to see how bones work. The museum also puts a focus on literacy with areas such as The Literacy Garden, which is a place where children can play and learn while developing literacy and language skills, and the Wild About Reading Gallery, which includes exhibits such as a giant Scrabble board that is fun for both adults and kids. And if you’re a single adult with no child, don’t worry. While you can’t get into the museum without a child during regular days, the museum has events such as Neon Nights and Ignite the Night, where adults have the whole museum to themselves. —Amber Helsel

Best Reason to Live in Jackson finalists: Community / Culture / The Food / The People Best Tourist Attraction finalists: The Jackson Zoo (2918 W. Capitol St., 601-352-2580) / Mississippi Children’s Museum (2145 Museum Blvd., 601981-5469, mschildrensmuseum.org) / Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St., 601-960-1515, msmuseumart.org) / Mississippi Museum of Natural Science (2148 Riverside Dr., 601-576-6000, museum.mdwfp.com) / The Rez

Best Annual Event: Hal’s St. Paddy’s Parade & Festival March, halsstpaddysparade.com

Imani Khayyam

Best Kid’s Hangout finalists: Deep South Pops (1800 N. State St., 601-398-2174; 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 173, 601-398-0623; deepsouthpops.com) / High Heaven Trampoline Park (2280 Lakeland Drive, Flowood, 769-208-3008, highheaven.us) / Party Safari (5324 Lakeland Drive, Flowood, 601-992-5111, partysafari.us) / Pump It Up (1576 Old Fannin Road, Suite P, Brandon, 601-992-5866, pumpitupparty.com)

If you look at many of the businesses and events that Jacksonians chose as this year’s “bests,” you’ll notice that Fondren shows up quite a few times. There are plenty of places worth checking out in the capital city, as Best of Jackson reminds us each year, but Fondren captures some of the coolest things about Jackson in a single area. This year, the neighborhood won the awards for Best Reason to Live in Jackson and Best Tourist Attraction. Every voter has his or her own reason for checking those boxes, but for some, it could be because of the cool, locally owned businesses. With just a short walk, you can grab a latte and pastry, buy a fresh outfit or some stylish home décor, get a tattoo, buy a guitar (and take lessons for said guitar), get a new hairdo and just about anything else you could want to accomplish in a day. Plus, there are so many restaurants that choosing a place to eat is basically a Herculean task. —Micah Smith

Best Museum finalists: Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St., 601960-1515, msmuseumart.org) / Mississippi Museum of Natural Science (2148 Riverside Dr., 601-576-6000, museum.mdwfp.com) / Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame & Museum (1152 Lakeland Drive, 601-982-8264, msfame.com) / Old Capitol Museum (100 S. State St., 601-576-6920, oldcapitolmuseum.com) / Smith Robertson Museum & Cultural Center (528 Bloom St., 601-960-1457)

Best Animal Shelter: Community Animal Rescue & Adoption

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

960 N. Flag Chapel Road; 601-922-7575; carams.org


Having a furry friend makes life just a little bit better, and organizations such as Community Animal Rescue & Adoption, which Jacksonians named 2017’s Best Animal Shelter, want to help people in the area find the pet for them. The no-kill shelter houses an average of 300 dogs and 120 cats. The organization also has adoption events on the weekends at places around the metro area, such as Hollywood Feed, PetSmart, PetCo and PetSen$e. CARA also has Bree’s Bark Park, offering Jackson dog owners a place to play with their pets. For those who love animals but can’t commit long-term, CARA has the Adopt-a-Leash program, which allows people to pay a monthly fee and spend as much time as they can with their favorite dog or cat. —Amber Helsel Finalists: Animal Rescue Fund of Mississippi (395 W. Mayes St., 769-216-3414) / Cheshire Abbey (cheshireabbey@gmail.com) / The Madison Ark (madisonark.org) / Mississippi Animal Rescue League (5221 Greenway Drive Ext., 601-969-1631, msarl.org) / Webster Animal Shelter (525 Post Oak Road, Madison, 601-605-4729)

You might not know it from the outside, but for Jacksonians, few celebrations carry the clout of St. Patrick’s Day. This year’s winner for Best Annual Event, Hal’s St. Paddy’s Parade & Festival, has become the holiday’s crowning jewel in the capital city. “I like to think of it as the people’s parade,” says Malcolm White, who created the event with his late brother, Hal White. “Back when I worked at George Street Grocery, we had a night celebrating St. Patrick’s Day. My brother and I founded our namesake restaurant in 1985, and the launching spot for the parade began at that point.” Today, the festival aspect is just as popular as the parade itself. Last year’s iteration featured performers such as the Mississippi Mass Choir, winner of this year’s Best Gospel Artist/Group, Sweet Crude, Flow Tribe and Robert Randolph & the Family Band. This year’s parade and festival take place March 18, so there’s plenty of time to get together a great costume and get into the St. Paddy’s spirit. —Mike McDonald Finalists: Dog Days of Summer (carams.org) / Jacktoberfest (jacktoberfest.com) / Mistletoe Marketplace (mistletoemarketplace.com) / WellsFest (wellschurch.org) / Zoo Brew (Jackson Zoo, 2918 W. Capitol St.; 601-352-2580; jacksonzoo.org)

Thank you for your continued support and for voting Fondren Cellars as a Best of Jackson Finalist!

Thank You!


The South


Thank you for nominating us: Best Beauty Shop/ Salon The Renaissance 1000 Highland Colony Pkwy,

Banner Hall 4465 I-55 North, Suite 201,



Suite 8001, Ridgeland


Highland Bluff

1400 Old Canton Road, Suite 110, Jackson


We appreciate you including us! WEN DY P U TT FR ES H C U T CATERI NG & FLORAL 108 Cypress Cove, Flowood, MS 39232 601-939-4518 | freshcutcateringandfloral@gmail.com

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Best Hair Stylist: Bethany Allen


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Best of Jackson

Are you a finalist? Didn’t get your party invitation? Email mary@jacksonfreepress.com or call 601-362-6121 x25

Best Local Business Owner; Best Locally Owned Business: Jake Franklin, Deep South Pops

Best Locally Owned Business finalists: Mangia Bene (3317 N. State St., 601982-4443) / Offbeat (151 Wesley Ave., 601-376-9404, offbeatjxn.com) / The Pet Shop of Fondren (2947 Old Canton Road, Suite G, 601-398-4198) / Sneaky Beans (2914 N. State St., 601-487-6349, sneakybeans.com) / Thimblepress (113 N. State St., 601-351-9492; 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 144, 601-345-3352; thimblepress.com) Best Local Business Owner finalists: Adriana Heindl (Dance Works Studio, 3247 Davis Road, Terry; 1104 E. Northside Drive, Clinton; 601-720-1885, dwsms.com) / Byron Knight (Sneaky Beans, 2914 N. State St., 601-487-6349, sneakybeans.com) / Jeff Good (Mangia Bene, 3317 N. State St., 601-982-4443) / Phillip Rollins (Offbeat, 151 Wesley Ave., 601-376-9404, offbeatjxn.com) / Ron Chane (Swell-O-Phonic, 2906 N. State St., Suite 103, 601-366-9955; Studio Chane, 3206 N. State St., 601-362-3547; The Wonder Lab, 2906 N. State St. Suite B8, 601-720-2426, chane.com, thewonderlab.city)

Best Local Bank or Credit Union: BankPlus

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Multiple locations, bankplus.net


Finalists: Best Bar Manager / Best Barber / Best Tamales / Best Wedding DJ

Best Local Car Dealer: Patty Peck Honda 555 Sunnybrook Road, Ridgeland, 601-957-3400, pattypeckhonda.com

A quick drive down Interstate 55 will reveal a fact that should be pretty obvious: The metro area has a ton of car dealerships. In fact, Jacksonians voted to give the award for 2017’s Best Local Car Dealer to one of the largest I-55 residents, Patty Peck Honda. The dealership has been helping customers find used and new cars, vans, SUVs and trucks for more than 25 years now, and Patty Peck’s website offers plenty of resources for undecided buyers to find the vehicle that best fits them. Patty Peck is known for more than just its showroom, though. Owners of almost any make of car—not just Hondas—can drop by the dealership’s service department for everything from fixing a busted headlight to replacing their brakes. —Micah Smith Finalists: Bob Boyte Honda (2188 Highway 18, Brandon, 601-591-5000, bobboytehonda. com) / Herrin-Gear Automotive Group (multiple locations, herringear.com) / Paul Moak Automotive (Honda, 802 Harding St., 855-943-4433; Subaru/Volvo, 740 Larson St., 888859-4918, paulmoak.com) / Ridgeland Autoworld (750 Ridgewood Road, Ridgeland, 601899-8500, ridgelandautoworld.com)

Best Place to Buy Antiques: The Flea Market, Mississippi’s Trade Place 1325 Flowood Drive, Flowood, 601-953-5914

Over the years, 2017’s winner for Best Local Bank or Credit Union, BankPlus, has used the slogan, “It’s more than a name; it’s a promise.” It’s a slogan the franchise tries to live up to. There are the helpful tellers and staff, of course, and branches offer 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. drive-thru service as well as Saturday morning hours to make life a little easier for their clients. BankPlus also has more than 57 locations around the state, so it shouldn’t be too hard to find a branch. In addition to making sure your hard-earned cash is safe and cozy, BankPlus is known for its charitable contributions and sponsorships, working to support community development, education, children’s health and other causes across the state. —Jan M. Richardson

The Flea Market in Flowood is a bit like our own local Cave of Wonders from “Aladdin”—full of treasures big and small, and hidden gems that, with the right touch, can find new reimagined use. The large warehouse space is divided up into smaller sections that are arranged in booth-sized vignettes that represent more than 150 dealers. The smaller spaceswithin-a-space help you picture the furniture and collectibles as they might be used in your home, and sprinkled among the home furnishings, you might find unique vintage clothing or furs and jewelry, comic books or baseball cards. The market, which is open Saturdays and Sundays, also has a large space near the back with more substantial items such as antique signs, lighting and hardware fixtures. —Julie Skipper

Finalists: BancorpSouth (multiple locations, bancorpsouth.com) / First Commercial Bank (1300 Meadowbrook Road, 601-709-7777; 1076 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 150, Ridgeland, 601-790-2789; firstcommercialbk.com) / Hope Credit Union (multiple locations, hopecu.org) / Magnolia Federal Credit Union (multiple locations, magfedcu.org) / Trustmark (multiple locations, trustmark.com)

Finalists: Antique Mall of the South (367 Highway 51, Ridgeland, 601-853-4000) / Old House Depot (639 Monroe St., 601-592-6200, oldhousedepot.com) / Repeat Street (242 Highway 51, Ridgeland, 601-605-9123, repeatstreet.net) / When Pigs Fly (202 W. Leake St., Clinton, 601-750-9552, whenpigsflystore.com)

courtesy Patty Peck Honda

A good question when starting a business is, “What would I want to go to?” For Jake Franklin, the answer was Deep South Pops, which Jacksonians voted as 2017’s Best Locally Owned Business. While living in Birmingham, Ala., he, his wife, Kristy, and their children, Gideon, Annalise, Gabriel and Elias, enjoyed visiting a local popsicle shop. When they moved to Jackson in 2013, they decided to bring their love of popsicles, craft beer and coffee under one roof and opened Deep South in Belhaven in June 2015. The Highland Village shop opened in October 2016. It’s not just the drinks and frozen treats that also earned Franklin the most votes for Best Local Business Owner. He has been committed to promoting community and arts in Jackson, having hosted many concerts at both locations and art exhibits at The Gallery at Deep South Pops in Belhaven. “One of the reasons we opened Deep South is that we moved from a very rural area outside of Birmingham, and community was just not a thing there,” he says. “… (In Jackson), there’s community, interesting people around you, tons of things to do, and that’s why we chose the Belhaven/Fondren kind of area for the business. We wanted this business to be a thing for the community and a thing of the community.” —Micah Smith

imani khayyam

1800 N. State St., 601-398-2174; 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 173, 601398-0623; deepsouthpops.com

Best Category We Left Off: Best Teacher Mississippi takes a lot of flak for its education on all sides—public, private, charter and otherwise—and that’s certainly been the case for Jackson, going back far past 2016. That’s all the more reason that Jacksonians voted for Best Teacher as 2017’s Best Category We Left Off, asking for an opportunity in the next Best of Jackson competition to show their support for the hard-working educators in our school system. With many things stacked against our teachers, often even from within our state government, it’s important for us to recognize those who push through it anyway, who put their all into their work and in educating the next generation. They face those difficulties head on so that, in the future, their students won’t have to. —Micah Smith

Thank you Thank you for nominating us! Best Men’s Clothing Store Highland Village • Jackson, MS 39211 www.buffalopeak.net • (601) 366-2557

for nominating us for

Best Place to Buy kids toys or clothes

182 PROMENADE BLVD, FLOWOOD, MS 39232 . (601) 992-9966

Thanks for nominating us Best Crawfish!

Presley McPhail | Sara McPhail | Ethan McPhail

Thank You For Our 12 Best of Jackson Nominations

Restaurant • Fine Dining• Chef-Alex Eaton Wine List • Place For Cocktails • Happy Hour Breakfast • Brunch • Caterer • LGBT Hangout Outdoor Dining • Local Pizza

6956 Old Canton Rd. Ridgeland, MS 39157 601.956.3474

1200 N State St #100, Jackson, MS 39202 (601) 398-4562

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

We appreciate your support and look forward to serving you in 2017


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Best of Jackson

Are you a finalist? Didn’t get your party invitation? Email mary@jacksonfreepress.com or call 601-362-6121 x25

Best Caterer: Wendy Putt, Fresh Cut Catering & Floral

Best Local Festival: Fondren’s First Thursday Monthly, fft.city

108 Cypress Cove, 601-939-4518, freshcutcateringandfloral.com

Imani Khayyam

Finalists: 4Top Catering (4500 Interstate 55 N., 601-942-4999, 4topcatering.com) / Mangia Bene Catering (4465 Interstate 55 N., Suite 101, 601-362-2900, mangiabene-catering.com) / The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen (1200 N. State St., Suite 100, 601-398-4562, themanshipjackson.com) / Nick Wallace/Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St., 601-9601515, msmuseumart.org) / Taste Bistro & Desserts (5419 Highway 25, Suite L, Flowood, 769-235-6232, tastebistroanddesserts.com)

courtesy Fresh Cut Catering

If you’ve ever had an event at The South Warehouse or The Railroad District, or maybe just an event in the Jackson area, you may have encountered Wendy Putt and her company, Fresh Cut Catering & Floral. She owns both The South and The Railroad District, so if you book a wedding or event at one of those venues, you have a built-in caterer. (She can do catering anywhere, though). Fresh Cut, which Putt founded in 1990, does full-service catering, floral design, event styling and more. She likes to customize every event, making sure every one is different from the last one. Although Putt specializes in weddings, she can also do events such as birthday parties, charity fundraisers, showers and corporate events. Keep a look out for Fresh Cut’s food and decorations at this year’s Best of Jackson party. —Amber Helsel

After changing this category from the previous Best Music Festival to Best Local Festival for the first time, Jacksonians voted for a not-at-all-unfamiliar event to take the title for 2017. Fondren’s First Thursday, formerly known as Fondren After 5, is a street festival that features music, art, food and drink vendors, and a variety of other activities each month. FFT has become such a part of Jackson culture that people took to the Internet in shock after a Facebook post in late 2015 from organizer Ron Chane suggested that the festival might be coming to an end. In December of that year, Chane clarified that “FFT as you know it” was over, as he would be taking his hands off the reins a bit to allow for more neighborhood control. After a year under this new management format, FFT has grown in attendance and in its offering of activities, with entertainment set up in more locations and special pop-up events often taking place at several locations across Fondren. —Micah Smith Finalists: CelticFest Mississippi (September, celticfestms.org) / Hal’s St. Paddy’s Parade & Festival (March, halsstpaddysparade.com) / Jacktoberfest (October, jacktoberfest.com) / Stray at Home Art & Music Festival (May, strayathome.com) / WellsFest (September, wellschurch.org)

Best Dance Studio: Dollhouse Dance Factory 1410 Ellis Ave., 601-969-4000, dollhousedancefactory.com

Best Art Gallery: Fondren Art Gallery

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Jesssica King / File Photo


Not a year goes by without the Jackson Free Press getting a call from a hopeful parent or child who wants to know how to join up with this year’s winner for Best Dance Studio, Dollhouse Dance Factory. To be clear, we aren’t affiliated, but we can certainly see why they’re interested. Dollhouse Dance Factory first opened in August 2010 and saw a boom in popularity in 2014 following the debut of “Bring It!”, which is Lifetime’s reality TV show about the studio. Being a student at the Jackson location or its Birmingham branch doesn’t guarantee a spot on the show, but that doesn’t put a damper on the young dancers applying from Jackson and beyond. The studio has classes, which includes ones such as ballet, hip-hop dance and jazz, for everyone from preschoolers to adults. —Micah Smith Finalists: Dance Works Studio (3247 Davis Road, Terry; 1104 E. Northside Drive, Clinton; 601-720-1885) / Mississippi Metropolitan Dance Academy (Mississippi Metropolitan Ballet, 110 Homestead Drive, Madison, 601-853-4508; 106 Autumn Ridge Place, Brandon, 601-992-9016) / Salsa Mississippi Club & Studio (605 Duling Ave., 601-213-6355) / Taboo Dance & Aerial Fitness (856 S. State St., 601-502-4000) / Xpress Dance Company (2160 Main St., Suite D, Madison, 601-853-0826; 155 W. Government St., 601-954-6268)

3242 N. State St., 601-981-9222, fondrenartgallery.com

Jackson artist Richard McKey’s giant Obama head sculpture on North State Street is hard to miss, so you’ll know that this year’s winner for Best Art Gallery, Fondren Art Gallery, which he first opened in 2008, is nearby in its new location. The gallery’s walls are covered in works from McKey, who is the primary artist, alongside pieces from other featured artists. Among them are colorful Darryl Anderson prints of Mississippi imagery, paintings of Jackson landmarks from Kelli Berry and penand-ink drawings from artist Jeffrey Yentz. The gallery also offers custom framing. Through its, “You name it, we’ll frame it,” policy, patrons can preserve and display anything from portraits and other artwork to heirlooms and antiques. For those wanting to flex some creative muscle, McKey offers art lessons to help others get creative. —Julie Skipper Finalists: Brown’s Fine Art and Framing (630 Fondren Place, 601-982-4844, brownsfineart.com) / Deep South Pops (1800 N. State St., 601-398-2174; 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 173, 601-398-0623; deepsouthpops.com) / Fischer Galleries (736 S. President St., fourth floor, 601291-9115, fischergalleries.com) / Offbeat (151 Wesley Ave., 601-376-9404, offbeatjxn.com) / Sanaa Gallery (5846 Ridgewood Road, Suite C-212, 769-218-8289, sanaagalleries.com)

Best Day Spa: AQUA The Day Spa

1000 Highland Colony Parkway, Suite 8001, Ridgeland, 601-898-9123, aquathedayspa.com

The voters’ choice for 2017’s Best Day Spa probably won’t be a shock to longtime JFP readers— AQUA The Day Spa has taken the title every year since 2003—but it’s still a tough category. Despite stiff competition from new spas in the area, AQUA has kept its customers coming back since opening in Banner Hall 17 years ago, which owner Susan Barnette says is thanks to the spa’s wide variety of services and products, and its highly educated staff, which works to stay ahead industry trends and new treatments. The business moved to the Renaissance at Highland Colony Park in 2009, and the Banner Hall location closed three years ago. “When the New Year starts, a lot of people’s resolutions are to get a massage more regularly because it’s a great way to relieve stress,” Barnette says. “For me personally, I think it’s a lifestyle and just a really good way to take care of yourself, just as important as working out, your diet and everything else.” —Micah Smith Finalists: Drench Day Spa and Lash Lounge (118 W. Jackson St., Suite 2-B, Ridgeland, 601-707-5656, drenchdayspa. com) / The Face & Body Spa of Plastic and Hand Surgery Associates (2550 Flowood Drive, Flowood, 601-939-1444, faceandbodycenterspa.com) / Sanctuary Body Spa of St. Dominic’s (340 Township Ave., Suite 200, Ridgeland, 601790-2222) / The Skin District (2629 Courthouse Circle, Suite B, Flowood, 601-981-7546, theskindistrict.com)

Thank you for voting us one of Jackson’s best restaurants.

Thank you Jackson for nominating us Best Sushi / Japanese.

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5834 Ridgewood RD, Jackson MS 601.899.8518

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January 25 - 31, 2017 â&#x20AC;¢ jfp.ms

Thank YOU! Best of Jackson 2017 Finalist


1 5 th A n n u a l

Best of Jackson Best Beauty Shop/ Salon: Barnette’s Salon

4465 Interstate 55 N., Suite 201, 601-362-9550; 1000 Highland Colony Parkway, Suite 8001, Ridgeland, 601-898-4646; 4400 Old Canton Road, 769-230-4648; barnettessalon.com

Barnette’s Salon owner Ralph Barnette has been making the Jackson metro area more stylish since he opened the first location in the basement of Banner Hall in 1985. This is Barnette’s second year in a row winning the award for Best Beauty Shop or Salon. The business has locations at Banner Hall and Highland Bluff in Jackson, and at Renaissance at Colony Park in Ridgeland. In addition to cuttings, the salon offers services include coloring, keratin treatment, Japanese thermal conditioning and extensions. The salon has been recognized as a Top 100 Salon in Elle Magazine in 2010, 2011 and 2014. “The customers are the joy of doing this job,” Richard Gray, business manager of the Banner Hall location, says, “and we just want to make our customers feel beautiful when they leave.” —Tyler Edwards Finalists: SMoak Salon (622 Duling Ave., Suite 206, 601-982-5313, smoaksalon.com) / Studio J Salon (151 E. Metro Pkwy., Flowood, 601-212-9130) / RITZ SALON (574 Highway 51 N., Suite H, Ridgeland, 601-8564330) / William Wallace Salon (2939 Old Canton Road, 601-982-8300) / Vamp the Salon (151 E. Metro Pkwy., Flowood, 601-955-9398) / LIV the Studio (151 E. Metro Pkwy., livreed1689@gmail.com)

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Jackson Zoo, 2918 W. Capitol St.; 601-352-2580; jacksonzoo.org


The Jackson Zoo’s Boo at the Zoo, originally called “Fright Night,” will celebrate 10 years of candy, costumes and activities for kids this October. “We wanted to transition from an event focused on scares to a more family-friendly atmosphere,” says Special Events Manager Toni Francis. That decision certainly paid off, as Boo at the Zoo received the most votes for 2017’s Best Kids’ Event. Boo at the Zoo is held on a Friday and Saturday around Halloween each year and features trick-or-treating, a costume contest, Monster Mash dance party, and opportunities to meet the zoo’s trained animal ambassadors, among other activities. Over the years, attendance has grown as much as the event has, with 1,300 people coming out to the zoo on Friday and 2,100 people on Saturday of last year. —Mike McDonald Finalists: KidFest! Ridgeland (April, kidfestridgeland. com) / Park After Dark (Mississippi Children’s Museum, Mississippi Museum of Natural Science, October, mschildrensmuseum.com) / Sal & Mookie’s Street Carnival (April, zddparade.com) / Touch A Truck Jackson (April, touchatruckjackson.com / WellsFest (September, wellschurch.org)

Best Fitness Center or Gym: The Club Multiple locations, theclubms.com

With the number of great gyms in capital city, there’s always a healthy competition in the Best Fitness Center or Gym category, but even so, this year’s winner, The Club, has taken the title on plenty of previous occasions. With five locations in the Jackson metro area alone, The Club has earned a reputation throughout Mississippi for being a quality fitness franchise, due to its variety of exercise programs and equipment options, its experienced staff and its commitment to increasing members’ overall wellness. Another big draw for the fitness centers is that the locations often carry their own advantages, including the Township location’s 10 tennis courts and aquatic facilities, the wellness and recovery pool at the St. Dominic’s Hospital center, and the extended hours at The Club 24 in Flowood. —Micah Smith Finalists: Anytime Fitness on Interstate 55 (4924 Interstate 55 N., Suite 107, 601-321-9465, anytimefitness.com) / Baptist Healthplex (717 Manship St., 601-968-1766, mbhs.org; 102 Clinton Parkway, Clinton, 601-925-7900, healthplexclinton.com; Healthplex Performance Center, 501 Baptist Drive, Madison, 601-856-7757, healthplexperformance. com; mbhs.org) / Courthouse Racquet & Fitness/UMMC (multiple locations, umc.edu) / Metro Jackson YMCA (multiple locations, metroymcams.org)

Best Liquor/Wine Store: Fondren Cellars

Best Place to Buy Kids’ Toys or Clothes: Olde Tyme Commissary 1000 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 9011, Ridgeland, 601-366-1849

Customers unfamiliar with Ridgeland business Olde Tyme Commissary might be surprised to see that Jacksonians selected it as 2017’s Best Place to Buy Kids’ Toys or Clothes. It’s true that Olde Tyme Commissary has a large selection of pottery, wall art and other home décor, but the business’ selection of children’s toys and furnishings is every bit as expansive. The shop has plenty of modern plush animals, board games and riding toys. But as its name suggests, some of the coolest options for kids at Olde Tyme Commissary are of the old-school and unique variety, such as handmade wooden play sets, rocking horses and children’s tables to cater to even the most sophisticated of toddler tea parties. —Micah Smith Finalists: Bows & Arrows (182 Promenade Blvd., 601992-9966, little-bows-arrows.myshopify.com) / Helen’s Young Ages (4750 Interstate 55 N., 601-362-0317, helensyoungages.com) / Nursery Rhymes LLC (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 152, 601-368-9997, nurseryrhymesllc.com) / Row 10 (1107 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 105, Ridgeland, 601-707-5846, row10baby.com)

633 Duling Ave., 769-216-2323

Best Flower Shop: Greenbrook Flowers Inc. Imani Khayyam

Best Kids’ Event: Boo at the Zoo

Are you a finalist? Didn’t get your party invitation? Email mary@jacksonfreepress.com or call 601-362-6121 x25

When you walk into Fondren Cellars, you’re greeted by wallto-wall wine and spirits that the business’ staff curates, meaning they tasted everything in the store. “If it’s here, we like it, (and) we believe it will sell because we stand behind it,” said Josh Crump, the manager of Fondren Cellars. Fondren Cellars also spends a great deal of time predicting trends—like Spanish wines in the last few years. For 2017, Crump says to look for wines from Portugal and Austria, and a re-energized focus on South African wines. Drop by on Wine Wednesdays to get 10 percent off all bottles of wine. Fondren Cellars will also lend you wine, Champagne and rocks glasses for your next party. The best part is you don’t have to wash them before bringing them back. —Dawn Dugle Finalists: Briarwood Wine and Spirits (4949 Old Canton Road, 601956-5108, briarwoodwineandspirits.com) / Corkscrew Fine Wine and Spirits (4800 Interstate 55 N., Suite 32B, 601-981-1333) / Joe T’s Fine Wines & Spirits (286 Highway 51, Ridgeland, 601-605-7602, joets.net) / Kats Wine & Spirits (921 E. Fortification St., 601-983-5287, katswine. com) / McDade’s Wine & Spirits (1220 E. Northside Drive, Suite 320, 601-366-5676, mcdadeswineandspirits.com)

705 N. State St., 601-957-1951, greenbrookflowers.com

Greenbrook Flowers is celebrating its centennial year in 2017. The fifth generation of the Jacobs family currently runs the historic florist shop, which has been open since 1917. In a highly competitive industry, its customer service and products have ensured the business’ longevity. It also helps that customers can order arrangements from the shop for all occasions online or by phone 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Greenbrook Flowers also introduced Good Neighbor Day in 1994, a tradition celebrated in mid-September. On this day, participants stop by the shop and receive a dozen roses free. They keep one for themselves, and give the others away to eleven different people. Greenbrook Flowers is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. —Jan M. Richardson Finalists: A Daisy A Day (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 194, 601-982-4438, adaisyadayjackson.com) / Green Oak Florist & Garden Center (5009 Old Canton Road, 601-956-5017; 1067 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite E, Ridgeland, 601-707-9440; greenoakms.com) / Mostly Martha’s Florist and Gifts (353 Highway 51, Ridgeland, 601-956-1474, mostlymarthasflorist.com) / Tulip Floral + Goods (1130 Old Cedars Lane, Madison, 601-5062210, ilovetulip.com) / Whitley’s Flowers (740 Lakeland Drive, 601-362-8844, whitleysflowers.com)

THANK YOU for making us a finalist in Best of Jackson 2017: Best Local Women’s Clothing Store!

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January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

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1 5 th A n n u a l

Best of Jackson Best Local Jewelry Store: Carter Jewelers

Best Nail Salon: Fondren Nails 2906 N. State St., Suite B1, 601-362-6292

711 High St., 601-354-3549, carterdiamonds.com courtesy Carter Jewelers

You won’t find many businesses in the Jackson that have been in the game as long as 2017’s winner for Best Local Jewelry Store, Carter Jewelers. The retailer’s website says it’s the third oldest registered jewelry store in the United States, having been in operation for more than 159 years. Contributing to that longevity is the massive stock of jewelry that the store offers. Customers can check out Carter’s collections from designers such as ASHI, Ziva Jewels, Stuller and Parade Design, and find the watch, necklace, bracelet, earring or engagement ring that speaks to them. And of course, if nothing in the inventory quite hits the target for you, Carter can place a special order with one of the store’s preferred suppliers or even custom-make a piece for you. —Micah Smith Finalists: Albriton’s (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 184, 601982-4020, albritons.com) / Beckham Custom Jewelry Co. (4800 Interstate 55 N., Suite 35, 601-665-4642) / Jackson Jewelers (253 Ridge Way, Flowood, 601-992-1700, jacksonjewelersinc.com) / Juniker Jewelry Co. (1485 Highland Colony Pkwy., Madison, 601-366-3754, junikerjewelry.com) / Newton’s Fine Jewelry (5417 Highway 25, Suite N, Flowood, 601-919-8747)

Best Place to Get Married: The South Warehouse


Weddings are a hassle to plan, whether it’s finding the right dress or the right invitations or dealing with the seating arrangements. For the catering and ceremony part, however, venues such as The South, which has been hosting ceremonies and receptions for the last eight years, make the planning a little easier. With 19,000 square feet of space, the venue is even big enough to house both the reception and ceremony. And it has a built-in caterer in the form of Wendy Putt, who won Best Caterer this year. In her event planning, Putt can create romantic ambiance with her eye for floral arrangements and design, which she customizes for each bride. She is hands-on in all aspects of the planning, from the menu to the flowers to the décor, so brides don’t have to worry so much about that part of the process. —Jessica Smith

Finalists: The Cedars (4145 Old Canton Road, 601-9819606, fondren.org) / The Cotton Market (2644 S. Pearson Road, Richland, 601-906-5499) / Fairview Inn (734 Fairview St., 601-948-3429, fairviewinn.com) / The Ivy Venue (1170 Luckney Road, Flowood, 601-906-5499, theivyvenueflowood.com) / Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St., 601-960-1515, msmuseumart.org)

Finalists: Cuticles Nail Salon (2947 Old Canton Road, 601-366-6999) / Keri the RED Designs (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 245, 601-331-1563, kerithered.com) / Kevin’s Nail Spa (655 Lake Harbour Drive, Suite 600, Ridgeland, 601-427-5211) / Mani’s & Pedi’s (1051 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite B, Ridgeland, 601-790-9074, ilovemanis.com) / VIP Nails & Spa (717 Clinton Pkwy., Clinton, 601-9244031, spafivestar.com)

Best Local Men’s Clothing: Buffalo Peak Outfitters 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 115, 601-366-2557, buffalopeak.net

Not a whole lot has changed with this year’s Best Local Men’s Clothing winner, Buffalo Peak Outfitters, since they took the title along with Best Locally Owned Business in 2016, Marketing Director Cody McCain says. But sometimes, consistency is the best quality. For 30 years, the store has been one of the local gems in Highland Village, and has helped customers find fashion choices that fit their needs, offering new styles from popular brands such as Patagonia, Southern Marsh and The North Face. McCain says: “It’s a small, family-business kind of feel, where we truly do try to help every customer who walks in—to make sure that they’re happy, that they leave with what they’re looking for and that they’re equally prepared for going on an adventure or just walking around town.” —Micah Smith

courtesy Buffalo Peak Outfitters

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

627 E. Silas Brown St., 601-939-4518

If you want to pamper your hands and feet, schedule an appointment with this year’s Best Nail Salon winner, Fondren Nails. Four years ago, Adrienne Williams became the owner of Fondren Nails. Williams, who worked as a nail technician for more than 10 years before she bought Fondren Nails, says she wanted her business to be in the Fondren area. “I moved to Fondren because I like the people,” she says. “It’s a great community, and I knew I would thrive here,” Williams said. Fondren Nails offers manicures and pedicures on natural nails only for men and women. The local salon operates by appointment only. “I appreciate all my support thus far, and I look forward to another great year,” Williams says. —LaShanda Phillips

Finalists: Great Scott (4400 Old Canton Road, Suite 101, 601984-3500, greatscott.net) / Kinkade’s Fine Clothing 
(120 W. Jackson St., Ridgeland, 601-898-0513, kinkadesfc.com) / The Landing (111 Colony Crossing Way, Suite 250, 601707-7505, thelandingsocialshop.com) / Red Square Clothing Company (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 103A, 601-398-3403; 1000 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 9004, 601-853-8960; redsquareclothingco.com) / The Rogue (4450 Interstate 55 N., 601-362-6383, therogue.com)

Best Veterinarian/Vet Clinic: Briarwood Animal Hospital 1471 Canton Mart Road, 601-9565030, briarwoodhospital.com

This year brings the 56th anniversary of Briarwood Animal Hospital, which voters chose as this year’s Best Veterinarian/Vet Clinic, but it’s not just the hospital that has experience behind it. Collectively, Briarwood’s staff of veterinarians has more than 80 years of experience in taking care of people’s furry friends. The hospital offers the Jackson metro area’s pet owners a variety of services and techniques such as feline AIDS and leukemia testing, small-animal medicine and surgery, and digital radiography and ultrasound imagery, to help critters live healthier and longer lives. Briarwood isn’t just for sick puppies, though. The hospital also has boarding and grooming facilities for dogs and cats to keep your pets company when you’re away, and you can stock up on treats and accessories at the Briarwood Pet Shop. —Micah Smith Finalists: All Creatures Animal Care Center (262 New Mannsdale Road, Madison, 601-856-5333, allcreaturesanimalcarecenter.com) / Animal Medical Hospital (1217 Old Fannin Road, 601-992-4822, amhvet.com) / Hometown Veterinary Service (1010 Depot Drive, Brandon, 601-825-1697) / North State Animal and Bird Hospital (5208 N. State St., 601-982-8261, northstateanimalhospital.com) / Oakdale Animal Hospital (2028 Highway 471, Brandon, 601-829-9949, oakdale-vet.com)

Best Barber Shop: Fondren Barber Shop

2943 Old Canton Road, 601-826-0707

Justin McPherson and his husband, Eddie Outlaw, opened this year’s winner for Best Barber Shop, Fondren Barber Shop, in November 2013. “We saw a need for a men’s barber shop that focused on current trends in men’s haircutting,” McPherson says, “and just something that gives men a little more of an experience than your older-school barbershops.” In late 2016, the couple moved Fondren Barber Shop and their salon, William Wallace Salon, under the same roof, allowing them and their support staff to help cater to their male clientele even more than they could previously, McPherson says. In addition to offering services such as cuts, shaves, beard trims and eyebrow waxing, McPherson and Outlaw also take pride in their staff. “We focus a lot on education for our barbers, and keeping them current on new trends,” McPherson says. —Tyler Edwards Finalists: ACEY Custom Hair Design (3015 N. State St., 601-937-7754) / The Barbershop at Great Scott (4400 Old Canton Road, Suite 100, 601-984-3500, greatscott.resurva. com) / Maurice’s Barber Shop (multiple locations) / Southside Barber and Beauty Shop (715 W. McDowell Road, 601-3219240) / Yelverton Barber Salon (901 Highway 51, Madison, 601-856-0015)

Are you a finalist? Didn’t get your party invitation? Email mary@jacksonfreepress.com or call 601-362-6121 x25

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1 5 TH A N N U A L

Best of Jackson Best Place for Women’s Clothing: Material Girls

Best Place for Unique Gifts: Apple Annie’s Gift Shop

1896 Main Street, Suite D, Madison, 601-853-8911; 152 Grants Ferry Road, Brandon, 601-992-9925; shopappleannies.com


Perennial Best of Jackson winner Material Girls has been outfitting trendy ladies for more than a decade. Owner Whitney Giordano Foster opened her first store in 2005 while she was still a senior at the University of Southern Mississippi, earning her bachelor’s degree in fashion merchandizing. Now the business, which won the title of 2017’s Best Place for Women’s Clothing, has locations in Flowood, Ridgeland, Oxford and Hattiesburg—and online shopping on its website. It’s a one-stop shop for current, reasonably priced styles, and carries everything from lace bralettes and boot socks to dresses, shorts, bags, jewelry and shoes. If you need inspiration, the website offers a “lookbook.” —Julie Skipper

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Finalists: CoatTails (111 W. Jackson St., Ridgeland 601-853-1313, shopcoattails.com) / Forty Four Fifty (4450 Interstate 55 N., 601-366-3687) / James & Leigh (420 Monroe St., Suite A, Clinton, 601-9107008, shopjamesandleigh.com) / Libby Story (1000 Highland Colony Pkwy., Suite 5003, Ridgeland, 601-717-3300, libbystory.com) / Maison Weiss (4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 109, 601-981-4621, maisonweiss.com) / MiGi’s Boutique (144 Market St., Flowood, 601-919-8203)


At times, it can be tough to find a memorable gift for a loved one. This year’s winner for Best Place for Unique Gifts, Apple Annie’s Gift Shop, is one of the stores in town that can help with your search. The family-owned business serves as a great place to find presents for friends and family, and as a one-stop shop to fulfill your own home’s needs and display your love of local treasures and businesses. Apple Annie’s, which has locations in Brandon and Madison, looks to showcase Mississippi flair and offers everything from jewelry to snacks to home decor. You can find all sorts of interesting items, such as cheese straws, Captain Rodney’s sauces and tea towels embroidered with a state of Mississippi design. —Mike McDonald Finalists: Bliss Bride (Bliss Gift and Home, 4465 Interstate 55 N., 601-3263337) / Mississippi Craft Center (950 Rice Road, Ridgeland, 601-856-7546, craftsmensguildofms.org) / Offbeat (151 Wesley Ave., 601-376-9404, offbeatjxn. com) / The Pine Cone (5056 Interstate 55 N., 601-713-1421) / Thimblepress (113 N. State St., 601-351-9492; 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 144, 601-3453352; thimblepress.com)

Best Place to Work: University of Mississippi Medical Center 2500 N. State St., 601-984-1000, umc.edu

This year’s winner for Best Place to Work, the University of Mississippi Medical Center, is a sprawling campus with 10,200 employees on the payroll. “Every day, someone in the state is affected by one of our facilities,” says Michael Estes, who is UMMC’s chief human resources officer. With the student body, that number increases by 3,000 persons, and factoring in patients, visitors, families of patients and consultants, there are anywhere from 20,000 to 24,000 people on campus each day. It is one of the only academic health sciences centers in the state and one of the largest employers in Mississippi. Estes says that even a nomination for Best Place to Work must mean that “we’re doing something right. We are committed to transparency here, which fosters a great working environment and relationship between employees and management. We are unique in many ways, but the people make us special.” —Mike McDonald Finalists: Babalu Tapas & Tacos (622 Duling Ave., Suite 106, 601-366-5757, eatbabalu.com) / Baptist Health Systems (1225 N. State St., 601-968-1000, mbhs.org) / Hinds Community College (hindscc.edu) / The State of Mississippi (Mississippi.gov)

Best New Addition to Jackson: High Heaven Trampoline Park 2280 Lakeland Drive, Flowood, 769-208-3008, highheaven.us


734 McKenzie Lane, Flowood, 601-992-4533; 1000 Highland Colony Parkway, Suite 7005, Ridgeland, 601-605-1605; shopmaterialgirls.com

Are you a finalist? Didn’t get your party invitation? Email mary@jacksonfreepress.com or call 601-362-6121 x25

High Heaven Trampoline Park, which received the most votes for 2017’s Best New Addition to Jackson, is a kind of wish-fulfillment factory to the vertically challenged among us. The park is equipped with a variety of trampolines, basketball goals to test your dunking skills, a trapeze for those who never got around to joining the circus, and dodge-ball court, to name a few. While the 23,000-square-foot facility is certainly family-friendly, it offers activities for more than just the kids’ birthday crowd, with its challenging ninja obstacle course, College Nights on Tuesday nights, and the late-night Club Heaven on Fridays and Saturdays, which features black lights, lasers and music for ages 15 and up. As of Jan. 1, High Heaven is also open seven days a week, so you’ll have more opportunities to get jumping. —Micah Smith Finalists: Deep South Pops (1800 N. State St., 601-3982174; 4500 Interstate 55 N., Suite 173, 601-398-0623; deepsouthpops.com) / The District at Eastover (1250 Eastover Drive, 601-914-0800, thedistrictateastover.com) / Green Ghost Tacos (1290 E. County Line Road, Ridgeland, 601-957-7436; 2801 N. State St., 601-203-2144; greenghosttacos.com) / The Pet Shop of Fondren (2947 Old Canton Road, Suite G, 601-398-4198) The 2017 Best of Jackson Party is this Sunday in downtown Jackson. Invitation only! If you are a finalist or winner and need to RSVP, please call Mary @ 601-362-6121 x18 by Friday at 3 p.m.! Visit bestofjackson. com to read about last year’s winners.

2016-2017 Best of Rankin

Best Chef

Danny Eslava 2481 Lakeland Drive Flowood | 601.932.4070

Best Food Truck/Mobile Vendor

Best New Restaurant

Best Mexican/Latin

Best New Addition to Jackson


January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Thank you for nominating us for:


1 5 th A n n u a l

Best of Jackson Best Place to Get Your Car Fixed: Barnett’s Body Shop

They say it takes forever to figure out what your first tattoo is going to be, but once you do

After not placing as a finalist in the Best Place to Get Your Car Fixed category last year, Barnett’s Body Shop took the title altogether in 2017. Of course, it can’t be too surprising that Jacksonians selected the local franchise. Barnett’s has been in the auto-repair industry for nearly half a century, so they know a thing or two about keeping things running smoothly. For 49 years now, Barnett’s has taken care of just about any automobile needs a customer might have, from the big fixes such as collision repairs and brake replacements to smaller tasks such as tire alignments and oil changes. With locations in Flowood, Ridgeland, Byram and Richland, the body shop is also a convenient choice for most residents in the Jackson metro area. —Micah Smith

Imani Khayyam

it, you’re hooked and are already thinking about where the next one will go. People from all walks of life come into Electric Dagger to get their tattoos. Some are first-timers, others the artists know by name—and tattoo. Though the shop has been open for four years, it has already taken Jackson by storm, winning Best Tattoo/Piercing Parlor for the last three years. Electric Dagger has books and books of ideas, along with artwork on the walls. Want something customized? They can do that for you, too. But whether you’re interested in getting your first or 50th tattoo, it’s best to go in and talk to one of the tattoo artists such as Mallory Palmertree, Mike Richardson or owner Jason Thomas directly about your dream design. It’s hard to discuss concept over the phone. Just make sure you bring cash, because the shop doesn’t take plastic for your ink! —Dawn R. Dugle

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Finalists: Hard Rocs Tattoo & Piercing (1149 Old Fannin Road, Brandon, 769-251-5363) / House of Pain Custom Tattoos (22 Holiday Rambler Lane, Suite 300, Byram, 601-321-9040) / Squench’s Tattoos, Ltd. (3780 Interstate 55 S., 601-372-2800, squenchstattoos. com) / Twiztid Images (557 Highway 49 S., Richland, 601-664-0000, twiztidimagestattoo.com)

Multiple locations, barnettsbodyshop.com

Finalists: Car Care Clinic (multiple locations, carcareclinicjetlube.com) / Freeman’s Auto Repair (847 S. State St., 601-948-3358) / Graves and Stoddard Inc. (722 Highway 80 E., Flowood, 601-939-3662) / Putnam’s Automotive Service (4879 N. State St., 601-366-1886)

Best Yoga Studio: Butterfly Yoga 3025 N. State St., 601-594-2313, butterflyyoga.net

Since owner Scotta Brady began Butterfly Yoga just over 14 years ago, the business has been a constant winner for the city’s Best Yoga Studio, winning the title every year since the Jackson Free Press added the category in 2011. Before founding the studio, Brady, a Jackson native, spent about a year and a half living and traveling abroad in countries such as Germany, New Zealand, London and Ireland, before returning to Jackson for law school in 1999. Then, Brady says, she had a change of heart and turned her attention to her love of yoga. She opened Butterfly Yoga in August 2002 in downtown Jackson, and it moved to its current location on North State Street in Fondren in 2004. The studio offers classes for students of all levels and needs, whether they’re just wanting a stress-management tool or a more strenuous exercise. Butterfly even offers a belly-dancing course for those wanting to try something different. —Jessica Smith Finalists: Joyflow Yoga (Fitness Plus, 1424 Old Square Road, Ridgeland, 601613-4317, joyflowyoga.com) / M Theory Yoga (118 W. Jackson St., Suite C, Ridgeland, 601-790-7402, mtheoryyoga.com) / StudiOm Yoga 
(665 Duling Ave., 601-209-6325, studiomyogaofms.com) / Tara Yoga (200 Park Circle, Suite 4, Flowood, 601-720-2337, tara-yoga.net)

Best Thrift/Consignment Shop: Repeat Street 242 Highway 51 N., Ridgeland, 601-605-9393, repeatstreet.net

courtesy Repeat Street

Best Tattoo/Piercing Parlor: Electric Dagger Tattoo 2906 N. State St., Suite B-6, 601-982-9437


Are you a finalist? Didn’t get your party invitation? Email mary@jacksonfreepress.com or call 601-362-6121 x25

While the metro area has a plethora of consignment stores, Jacksonians have repeatedly voted for one specific one over the last few years for Best Thrift/Consignment Shop: Repeat Street. The store, which recently celebrated its 10-year anniversary, has a story to tell, considering all its interesting finds and more than enough room to explore. Owner Michele Austin opened Repeat Street in a 700-square foot space in 2006. These days, the store is in a 17,000-square-foot warehouse space in Ridgeland, which has allowed the shop to expand its collection. While there, you can find everything from fashion to furniture to records to interesting antiques. In 2016, Michele Austin bought Orange Peel in Fondren, adding another business to further cement her love for consignment shops. —Jessica Smith Finalists: Bloomingdeals Fine Consignments + (1425 Jacksonian Plaza, 601-977-0901, bloomingdeals.co) / Leap Frog Children’s Consignment & More (104 Village Blvd., Madison, 601-8980727, leapfrogmadison.com) / Orange Peel Resale (422 Mitchell Ave., 601-364-9977) / N.U.T.S. (114 Millsaps Ave., 601-355-7458) / Private Collection (101B Village Blvd., Madison, 601-607-6004)

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Thanks for nominating us for: Thank you for nominating us for: Best New Restaurant Best Place for Dessert Best Caterer 5419 HIGHWAY 25 SUITE L, FLOWOOD, MS (769) 235-6232


MUDBUGS 1299 Old Fannin Road Brandon, MS 39047 (601)992-5225

MUDBUGS 042 151 W. Government St., Ste. D Brandon, MS 39042 (601)706-4751

“We’re always recording, so make something beautiful.” AWA R D


CROSSROADS FILM FESTIVAL April 6-9, 2017 Films & music videos, film-related workshops, after-parties and an Awards Brunch -locations in Greater Jackson, including Malco Grandview in Madison, and Cathead Distillery and Iron Horse Grill in downtown Jackson


New Stage Theatre Presents

Let The Music Dance ϦлюяьолѓίϠльнтӴют ҫлцулϠльлϛлцц

Book by Kevin Del Aguila

Original Music and Lyrics by George Noriega & Joel Someillan

January 24-February 5, 2017 Directed by Francine Thomas Reynolds Musical Director Harlan Zackery, Jr.

For tickets: 601-948-3531 or newstagetheatre.com Sponsored by

MADAGASCAR TYA is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI, 421 West 54th Street, New York, NY 10019 Tel.:(212) 541-4684 Fax: (212) 397-4684 www.MTIShows.com


January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Based on the DreamWorks Animation Motion Picture





Tim Gautreaux signs copies of “Signals” at Lemuria Books.

Capital City Hamfest begins at the Mississippi Trade Mart.

The Belgian Resurgence Ride is at The Bike Crossing in Ridgeland.

BEST BETS Jan. 25 Feb. 1, 2017 courtesy new stage theatre


Jewish Cinema Festival 2017 continues at 7 p.m. at Malco Grandview Cinema (221 Grandview Blvd., Madison). The festival includes a screening each night. Films include “The People vs. Fitz Bauer,” “Sabena Hijacking—My Version,” “Moos” and “Fanny’s Journey.” Additional dates: Jan. 26-28, 7 p.m., Jan. 29, 2 p.m. $10 single-day admission, $40 weekend pass; jewishcinemams.com.


courtesy ardenland

“As Much As I Can” is from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at The Ice House (251 W. South St.). The immersive experience is about the black LGBT communities of Jackson and Baltimore, and the people affected by the HIV epidemic. Free; email nbessire98@gmail.com; theicehousevenue.com. … Unknown Hinson performs at 9 p.m. at Duling Hall (622 Duling Ave.). The comedic country musician performs. Rooster Blues also performs. $15 in advance, $20 at the door, $3 surcharge for under 21; ardenland.net.

“Madagascar—A Musical Adventure” runs Jan. 2728 and Feb. 3-5 at New Stage Theatre.

American Heart Association. $250; call 601-321-1204; email Christopher.Mims@Heart.org; ahajackson.ejoinme. org. … “Madagascar—A Musical Adventure” is at 7 p.m. at New Stage Theatre (1100 Carlisle St.). Alex the Lion, Marty the Zebra, Melman the Giraffe, Gloria the Hippo and the penguins journey from New York to Madagascar. Additional dates: Jan. 28, 2 p.m., Feb. 3, 7 p.m., Feb. 4-5, 2 p.m. $15; $10 ages 12 and under; newstagetheatre.com.


The third annual Chinese Cultural Spring Festival is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.). Includes a food fair, children’s activities, a Chinese by TYLER EDWARDS puppet show, celebration parade and more. Free; email springfestjacksonfreepress.com ms@gmail.com; find it on Facebook. … “Bravo! Mendelssohn!” Fax: 601-510-9019 is at 7:30 p.m. at Thalia Mara Daily updates at Hall (255 E. Pascagoula St.). The jfpevents.com Mississippi Symphony Orchestra performs a selection of works from German Romantic composer Felix Mendelssohn. Includes a free pre-concert lecture from Timothy Coker at 6:45 p.m. $20-$62; call 601-960-1565; msorchestra.com.

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms


Singer-songwriter Dylan LeBlanc performs Wednesday, Feb. 1, at Duling Hall.


Metro Jackson Heart Ball is from 6 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. at the Country Club of Jackson (345 St. Andrews Drive). Feature pre-dinner cocktails, a silent auction and 56 musician Coop D’Belle performs. Proceeds benefit the


The 13th annual Chili Cook-off is from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at Brandon United Methodist Church (205 Mary Ann Drive, Brandon). Includes awards for best table

design and chili, a cakewalk for kids and a fine cake auction. Proceeds benefit local missions. $5; find it on Facebook.


Business Moves 2017 is from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Hilton Garden Inn (235 W. Capitol St.). The seminar and workshop discusses business branding and importance of trademarks, copyrights and patents, among other topics. Admission TBA; call 601-353-5464; email dixie.krauss@ hilton.com; find it on Facebook.


A Super Night for Children’s Mental Health is from 4:45 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame & Museum (1152 Lakeland Drive). Pediatricians, physicians, nurse practitioners, psychologists and other medical professionals meet to learn about the latest management and treatment options for mental health challenges in children. Topics include ADHD, mood disorders, depression and more. Admission TBA; call 601-984-1300; find it on Facebook.


Dylan LeBlanc performs at 7:30 p.m. at Duling Hall (622 Duling Ave.). The Shreveport, La.-native singersongwriter’s latest album is titled “Cautionary Tale.” Sam Mooney also performs. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. $8 in advance, $12 at the door, $3 surcharge for patrons under 21; call 877-987-6487; ardenland.net.

Rally for Recovery and Legislative Day Jan. 27, 8 a.m.-2 p.m., at Mississippi State Capitol (400 High St.). An informational session in the rotunda regarding those affected by addiction follows the rally. Free; find it on Facebook. The Expanding Universe Jan. 27, 1:30 p.m., at Millsaps College (1701 N. State St.). Alex Filippenko of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts & Sciences is the guest speaker. Free; millsaps.edu.


STAGE & SCREEN Jewish Cinema Festival 2017 Jan. 25-28, 7 p.m., Jan. 29, 2 p.m., at Malco Grandview Cinema (221 Grandview Blvd., Madison). Films include “The People vs. Fitz Bauer,” “Sabena Hijacking—My Version,” “Moos” and “Fanny’s Journey.” $10 single-day admission, $40 weekend pass; call 601-790-3090; jewishcinemams.com. Madagascar—A Musical Adventure Jan. 27, 7 p.m., Jan. 28, 2 p.m., at New Stage Theatre (1100 Carlisle St.). Alex the Lion, Marty the

the best in sports over the next seven days

by Bryan Flynn The matchup in Super Bowl LI is set: The Atlanta Falcons will face the New England Patriots on Sunday, Feb. 5. Both teams have been in the Super Bowl before but haven’t faced off in their previous trips. Thursday, Jan. 26

College basketball (6-8 p.m., SECN+): Get your steaming device ready as the UM Rebels women take on the Kentucky Wildcats. Friday, Jan. 27

NBA (7-9:30 p.m., ESPN): It’s a slow sports night, but you can still catch the Houston Rockets on the road against the Philadelphia 76ers. Saturday, Jan. 28

College football (1:30-5 p.m., NFLN): Some of Mississippi’s best senior football players will be taking the field for the 2017 Senior Bowl. Sunday, Jan. 29

NFL (7-11 p.m., ESPN): Tune in for the final chance to see Dak Prescott until the start of the 2017 NFL season in the AFC -NFC in the Pro Bowl. Monday, Jan. 30

NFL (10-10:30 p.m., ESPN2): The SportsCenter special “NFL Moms” Final Friday Jan. 27, 5 p.m., at Midtown Arts District. Includes studio tours, live entertainment, extended store hours, and more. Free admission; madeinmidtownjxn.com. Rock the Runway 2017 Jan. 28, 7-11 p.m., at Jackson Convention Complex (105 E. Pascagoula St.). More than 60 models and 15 designers and boutiques participate in the celebration of fashion and entertainment. Admission TBA; call 601-345-8205; find it on Facebook.

SPORTS & WELLNESS The Belgian Resurgence Ride Jan. 28, 8 a.m.-2 p.m., at The Bike Crossing (115 W. Jackson St., Suite 1-D, Ridgeland). The bike ride includes 35-mile and 60-mile route options. Riders of all experience levels are welcome to participate. $5 entry fee; call 601-856-0049; robert@thebikecrossing.com; thebikecrossing.com.

looks at one of the major motivators behind professional football players. Tuesday, Jan. 31

College basketball (6-8 p.m., SECN): End the month with a big match. Two long-time rivals facing off on the hardwood, as the University of Mississippi Rebels men host the Mississippi State University Bulldogs. Wednesday, Feb. 1

College football (9 a.m.-2 p.m., SECN): Check out who improved and who struggled as SEC teams including MSU and UM sign the top highschool players to their programs on the 2017 National Signing Day. This year’s NFL Playoffs have been a bit lacking in terms of drama. Eight of the 10 games ended in blowout wins for the home teams, including both championship games. Follow Bryan Flynn at jfpsports.com, @jfpsports

Zebra, Melman the Giraffe, Gloria the Hippo and the penguins journey from New York to Madagascar. $15; $10 children 12 and under; call 601-948-3533; newstagetheatre.com.

CONCERTS & FESTIVALS Events at Duling Hall (622 Duling Ave.) • Unknown Hinson Jan. 26, 9 p.m. The comedic country musician performs. Rooster Blues also performs. $15 in advance, $20 at the door, $3 surcharge for under 21; ardenland.net. • Eric Lindell Jan. 28, 8 p.m. The New Orleans-based musician performs. Chris Gill also performs. $20 in advance, $25 at the door; ardenland.net. • Dylan LeBlanc Feb. 1, 7:30 p.m. The Shreveport, La.-native singer-songwriter performs. Sam Mooney also performs. $8 in advance, $12 at the door; ardenland.net.

Capital City Hamfest Jan. 27, 5-8 p.m., Jan. 28, 8 a.m.-4 p.m., at Mississippi Trade Mart (1207 Mississippi St.). Steve Ewald is the guest speaker. Includes vendors, discussions and other activities for amateur radio enthusiasts. $10 cover, ages 12 and under free; hamfest.msham.org. Third Annual Chinese Cultural Spring Festival Jan. 28, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., at Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.). Includes a food fair, children’s activities, a Chinese puppet show, celebration parade and more. Free; email springfestms@gmail.com; find it on Facebook. Bravo! Mendelssohn! Jan. 28, 7:30 p.m., at Thalia Mara Hall (255 E. Pascagoula St.). The Mississippi Symphony Orchestra performs a selection of works from German Romantic composer Felix Mendelssohn. Includes a free pre-concert lecture from Timothy Coker at 6:45 p.m. $20-$62; call 960-1565; msorchestra.com.

LITERARY & SIGNINGS “Signals” Jan. 25, 5 p.m., at Lemuria Books (Banner Hall, 4465 Interstate 55 N., Suite 202). Tim Gautreaux signs copies. Reading at 5:30 p.m. $26.95 book; lemuriabooks.com. “We Carry Gold” Book Signing Jan. 28, 1-3 p.m. at Bay Window Books (151 W. Government St., Brandon). Mississippi-native author Carlene Singleton signs copies. Free; call 601706-4545; find it on Facebook.










10 P.M.



10 P.M.

CREATIVE CLASSES Jackson’s North State Street—An Architectural History Jan. 26, 6:30-8:30 p.m., at Millsaps College (1701 N. State St.). The class covers the architectural history of State Street and looks at photographs of houses, institutional and religious structures. $40; call 601-974-1130; millsaps.edu. Business Moves 2017 Jan. 30, 7-8:30 p.m., at Hilton Garden Inn (235 W. Capitol St.). The seminar and workshop discusses business branding and importance of trademarks, copyrights and patents, among other topics. Admission TBA; call 601-353-5464; find it on Facebook.








$1 PBR & HIGHLIFE $2 MARGARITAS 10pm - 12am



“Titanoboa: Monster Snake” Exhibit Opening Jan. 28, 8 a.m.-5 p.m., at Mississippi Museum of Natural Science (2148 Riverside Drive). The Smithsonian traveling exhibition is based around the discovery of a 48-foot snake fossil in Colombia. Runs through April 23. Included with admission: $6 adults, $4 youth; email mdwfp. com; mdwfp.com/museum.aspx.

2/2 - The Vegabonds 2/3 - Universal Sigh 2/4 - Naughty Professor 2/7 - The Funky Knuckles (Snarky Puppy’s Label) 2/9 - Lucero w/ special guest Esmé Patterson 2/10 - Andrew Duhon 2/17 - Wild Adriatic 2/18 - CBDB 4/6 - Papadosio (Pattern Integrities Spring Tour)

BE THE CHANGE Metro Jackson Heart Ball Jan. 27, 6-11:30 p.m., at Country Club of Jackson (345 St. Andrews Drive). Feature pre-dinner cocktails, a silent auction and musician Coop D’Belle performs. Proceeds benefit the American Heart Association. $250; 321-1204; ahajackson.ejoinme.org. Check jfpevents.com for updates and more listings, or to add your own events online. You can also email event details to events@jacksonfreepress.com to be added to the calendar. The deadline is noon the Wednesday prior to the week of publication.

See Our New Menu




January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms



Music listings are due noon Monday to be included in print and online listings: music@jacksonfreepress.com.


Thank you for nominating us for: Best Bartender (Jamie Moss) Best Server/Waitperson (Ryne Morrow) Best Bar Best LGBT Hangout "EST/PEN -IC.IGHT "EST0LACETO$RINK#HEAP "EST0UB1UIZ4RIVIA.IGHT Best Service Industry Hangout Sexiest Female "ARTENDER +IRBY#OUTCH Sexiest Male "ARTENDER *AMIE-OSS

%&ORTIlCATION3Ts   www.fenianspub.com -ON &RIAM AMs3ATPM AMs3UNPM AM


&'( January 25 - 31, 2017 â&#x20AC;˘ jfp.ms



)*+,'-.#/01 .',

Char - Tommie Vaughn 6 p.m. Fitzgeraldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Doug Hurd 7:30 p.m. Hal & Malâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - New Bourbon Street Jazz Band Kathrynâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Jeff Maddox 6:30 p.m. free Pelican Cove - Open Mic 6 p.m. Shuckerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Sid Thompson & DoubleShotz 7:30 p.m. free

JAN. 26 - THURSDAY Burgers & Blues - Doug Hurd 6 p.m. Char - Tommie Vaughn 6 p.m. Duling Hall - Unknown Hinson w/ Rooster Blues 9 p.m. $15 advance $20 door ardenland.net F. Jones Corner - Blues Challenge w/ Dexter Allen 10 p.m. Fitzgeraldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Will & Linda 7:30 p.m. Georgia Blue, Flowood - Jonathan Alexander Georgia Blue, Madison - Dan Confait Hal & Malâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Dâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Lo Trio Iron Horse Grill - James Bell Jazz Duo 6 p.m. Kathrynâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Steele Heart 6:30 p.m. free Pelican Cove - Sid Thompson 6 p.m. Shuckerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Andrew Pates 7:30 p.m. free Sneaky Beans - Becca Rose & Alex Fraser 6:30 p.m. Soulshine, Flowood - Stevie Cain 7 p.m. Sylviaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Thursday Night Live feat. The Blues Man & Sunshine McGhee 9 p.m. free

JAN. 27 - FRIDAY Ameristar Bottleneck Blues Bar, Vicksburg - Doug Allen 8 p.m. free Burgers & Blues - Jason Stogner Duo 6 p.m. Castlewoods Country Club, Brandon - Jason Turner 6 p.m. Ceramiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Linda Blackwell & James Bailey 6:30-9:30 p.m. free Char - Ronnie Brown 6 p.m. F. Jones Corner - The Blues Man 10 p.m. $1; Sorrento Ussery midnight $10 Fitzgeraldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Hunter Gibson & Ronnie McGee 7:30 p.m. Georgia Blue, Flowood - Shaun Patterson Georgia Blue, Madison - Brian Jones Hal & Malâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Stevie Cain The Hideaway - Chad Wesley Band 10 p.m. Kathrynâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Sofa Kings 7 p.m. free Kemistry - Stonewalls & Die With Nature 10 p.m.

M Bar - Flirt Fridays feat. DJ 901 free Martinâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Honey Island Swamp Band 10 p.m. Pelican Cove - Larry Brewer & Doug Hurd 6-10 p.m. Popâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Saloon - Dylan Moss Band 9 p.m. Reed Pierceâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s, Byram - Aaron Coker Band 9 p.m. free Shuckerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Will & Linda 5:30 p.m. free; Lovin Ledbetter 8 p.m. $5; Brian Jones 10 p.m. free Soulshine, Flowood - Andy Tanas 7 p.m. Soulshine, Ridgeland - Steve Chester 8 p.m. Two Rivers, Canton - Sid Thompson & DoubleShotz 8:30-11:30 p.m. WonderLust - DJ Taboo 8 p.m.2 a.m.

JAN. 28 - SATURDAY Ameristar Bottleneck Blues Bar, Vicksburg - Doug Allen 8 p.m. free Burgers & Blues - Jessie Howell 6 p.m. COURTESY COKE BUMAYE

MUSIC | live

Soul Wired Cafe - Mac Music & the Mac Music Trio 9 p.m. $8 advance Soulshine, Flowood - Andrew Pates 7 p.m. Soulshine, Ridgeland - Chris Gill 8 p.m. Thalia Mara Hall - MS Symphony Orchestraâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Bravo! Mendelssohn!â&#x20AC;? 7:30 p.m. $23-$62 WonderLust - Drag Performance & Dance Party feat. DJ Taboo 8 p.m.-3 a.m. free before 10 p.m.

JAN. 29 - SUNDAY Burgers & Blues - Jesse Smith Char - Big Easy Three 11 a.m.; Tommie Vaughn 6 p.m. The Hideaway - Mike & Martyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Jam Session Kathrynâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - The Sole Shakers 6 p.m. free Pelican Cove - Ronnie Brown 11 a.m.; Rockinâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; the Keys 4 p.m. Shuckerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Road Hogs 3:30 p.m. free Sombra Mexican Kitchen - John Mora 11 a.m. Table 100 - Jazz Brunch feat. Raphael Semmes Trio 11 a.m.2 p.m. Wellingtonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Andy Hardwick 11 a.m.

JAN. 30 - MONDAY Coke Bumaye

Duling Hall - Eric Lindell w/ Chris Gill 8 p.m. $20 advance $25 door ardenland.net F. Jones Corner - Big Money Mel & Small Change Wayne 10 p.m. $1; T-Baby midnight $10 Fenianâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Mark Taylor 9 p.m. Georgia Blue, Flowood - Brian Jones Georgia Blue, Madison - Chad Wesley Hal & Malâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Delta Stateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s DMI Night (red) The Hideaway - IV Shots 9 p.m. $10 Kathrynâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Lucky Hand Blues Band 7 p.m. free Liquid Light Cafe - ManDate feat. Kerry Thomas 9 p.m. $15 advance $20 door Martinâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - New Madrid 10 p.m. Offbeat - Coke Bumaye & Passing Parade 9 p.m. Pelican Cove - Jonathan Alexander 6 p.m. Popâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Saloon - Hairicane 9 p.m. $10 Reed Pierceâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s, Byram - Shadz of Grey 9 p.m. free Shuckerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Sofa Kings 3:30 p.m. free; Lovin Ledbetter 8 p.m. $5; Josh Turner 10 p.m. free

1/28 - Reel Big Fish & Anti-Flag - The Joy Theater, New Orleans 1/28 - Boz Scaggs - Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Biloxi 1/29 - Surfer Blood - Spanish Moon, Baton Rouge 1/31 - Joyce Manor - The Hi-Tone Cafe, Memphis

Char - Tommie Vaughn 6 p.m. Fitzgeraldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Hunter Gibson & Chris Link 7:30 p.m. Hal & Malâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Central MS Blues Society (rest) 7 p.m. Kathrynâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Barry Leach 6:30 p.m. free

JAN. 31 - TUESDAY Char - Tommie Vaughn 6 p.m. Fenianâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Open Mic Fitzgeraldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Johnny Crocker 7:30 p.m. Kathrynâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Sid Thompson & DoubleShotz 6:30 p.m. free Last Call Sports Grill - Top-Shelf Tuesdays feat. DJ Spoon 9 p.m. Offbeat - Open Mic Comedy 9 p.m. free

FEB. 1 - WEDNESDAY Char - Tommie Vaughn 6 p.m. Duling Hall - Dylan LeBlanc w/ Sam Mooney 7:30 p.m. $8 advance $12 door ardenland.net Fitzgeraldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Hunter Gibson & Rick Moreira 7:30 p.m. Kathrynâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Larry Brewer & Doug Hurd 6:30 p.m. free Pelican Cove - Open Mic Night w/ Stace Shook 6 p.m. Shuckerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s - Silverado 7:30 p.m. free

$2).+30%#)!,3s"52'%23s7).'3s&5,,"!2s'!4%$0!2+).' ")'3#2%%.463s,%!'5%!.$4%!-0,!9 "%')..%234/!$6!.#%$s).3425#4/23!6!),!",%

-Pool Is Cool-

Thank your for nominating us for Best Place to Play Pool




NEW BOURBON STREET JAZZ BAND Restaurant - 7pm - Free _________________________


D’LO TRIO Restaurant - 7pm - Free


Daily 11pm -2am


12pm - 7pm

444 Bounds St. Jackson MS | 601-718-7665



STEVIE CAIN Restaurant - 7pm - Free



Restaurant - 7 - 10pm $3 Members $5 Non-Members _________________________


IDEAS ON TAP Sponsored by the MS Humanities Council Red Room - 5:15-7:30pm

Best of Jackson 2017 LOCAL BURGER

w/ Jimmy Quinn



LOCAL PLACE TO WATCH THE GAME The Burgers and Blues team appreciates your support.

rooster blues

psychobilly meets surf, country, classic rock

Saturday, January 28

ERIC LINDELL chris gill

sweet, blue-eyed soul with foot-stomping r&b, swamp pop, funk and blues






Red Room - 7pm _________________________

Thank You For Making Us Finalist!

Thursday, January 26

PUB QUIZ Restaurant - 7:30pm - $2 to Play


_________________________ 2/17 Captain Midnight Band _________________________ OFFICIAL


Visit HalandMals.com for a full menu and concert schedule

601.948.0888 200 S. Commerce St. Downtown Jackson, MS

Wednesday, February 1

DYLAN LEBLANC sam mooney

regarding his new album: “it’s a near flawless record, cohesive and self-assured” - no depression

Saturday, February 4

JARED & THE MILL empty atlas

southwestern indie rock band formed in phoenix, arizona, whose music is influenced by their home’s blend of cultures

Tuesday, February 7

FRED EAGLESMITH Traveling Steam Show

canadian alternative country singer-songwriter

Thursday, February 9

RUNAWAY JUNE michigan rattlers

organic, three-part female harmonies, ringing strings and stories that speak the language of moden women



January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms






46 Hundred Years’ ___ (which lasted less than 100 years) 47 Suffix meaning “doctrine” which is not a valid Scrabble word by itself 48 One of the original Three Musketeers, along with D’Artagnan 49 Beginning-of-term activities 51 Meat ___ (“Aqua Teen Hunger Force” character with three teeth) 53 RNs report to them 54 Famous Greta Garbo line from “Grand Hotel” 58 Idiom taken directly from Shakespeare’s “King John” 59 ___ Tin Tin (movie German shepherd originally played by a female) 60 Universal plasma donor’s blood type, for short 61 Shout of the recently incarcerated 62 Tic-___-Dough (pencil and paper game) 63 Shrek in the movie series, but not in the original William Steig book 64 Did 100 kph in a 70 mph zone, e.g. 65 Opposite direction from 29-Across

31 Boat part furthest away from the bow 32 Card played last in a winning game of Klondike solitaire 35 “Santa Barbara” airer, once 36 Three-word EMT skill, for short 37 Jazz artist Diana who married Elvis Presley 38 Bo Sheep in “U.S. Acres,” for one 39 Airplane activity that takes place in the air 40 Night ___ (“X-Men” character aka Hank McCoy) 43 Toyotas and Subarus, in Japan 44 Flowers that repel hummingbirds 45 Sister magazine of Ebony 47 Lives and breathes

48 Singer of the “Spectre” theme song 50 Palmolive spokesperson played by three different actresses 51 Tom whose second novel was “The Bonfire of the Vanities” 52 “... It’s ___! It’s Superman!” 55 “Analyze ___” (2002 sequel) 56 Permanent worker 57 Negative vote 58 Nickelodeon’s trademark slime ©2016 Jonesin’ Crosswords (editor@ jonesincrosswords.com)

For answers to this puzzle, call: 1-900-226-2800, 99 cents per minute. Must be 18+. Or to bill to your credit card, call: 1-800 655-6548. Reference puzzle #808.



“Believe It” —or not. Across

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

1 Sushi fish also called yellowtail 4 Amount a cab driver gives to you 8 “___ O’Riley” (“CSI: Miami” theme song) 12 Participated in racewalking 13 Like a serrano pepper, compared to a poblano 15 Olmert who preceded Ariel Sharon as Prime Minister of Israel 16 Mitsubishi off-road three-wheeler, for example 17 Exact quote from Gordon Gekko in “Wall Street” 19 Catchphrase spoken verbatim on the original “Star Trek” series 21 “La ___ Bonita” (U.S. #1 hit for Madonna) 22 ___ & Literacy (brown category in Trivial


Pursuit) 23 Army service call used by Al Pacino in all of his movies (not just “Scent of a Woman”) 25 Used an old phrase 27 “Winnie-the-Pooh” marsupial parent 29 202.5 deg. on the compass 30 Conjunction that’s spelled with a backslash 31 “Better Call ___” (spin-off sequel to “Breaking Bad”) 33 Creatures proven to be found at Area 51, for short 34 Process scrupulously utilized by all news outlets (which I obviously didn’t do with a single clue in this puzzle) 38 Abbr. from the Latin for “and many more” 41 Drink produced by the real-life brand Heisler 42 Nobel Peace ___ (award given in Stockholm)

1 Coffee bean that yields more caffeine than its counterpart 2 Venerates, slangily 3 Like an unexpired coupon 4 Flower, south of the Pyrenees 5 Bungling 6 Semillon and Riesling, for two 7 Speaker of the first line of the first episode of “South Park” 8 “Ain’t Too Proud, ___ Differ” (Temptations hit) 9 What an Australian weatherman may say “it’s gonna be” on an August day 10 Like boulders 11 Use the minus button 13 “Citizen Kane” studio 14 “___ the news today, oh no” (Beatles lyric) 18 Neighborhood in London’s East End 20 Time ___ the Year (selection made since the magazine’s inception) 24 “___ Like the Wind” (“Dirty Dancing” song) 26 Phanerozoic, for one 27 West-side tributary of the Rhine 28 Cheer for a pescador

Last Week’s Answers

Last Week’s Answers

“Sum Sudoku”

Put one digit from 1-9 in each square of this Sudoku so that the following three conditions are met: 1) each row, column, and 3x3 box (as marked off by heavy lines in the grid) contains the digits 1-9 exactly one time; 2) no digit is repeated within any of the areas marked off by dotted lines; and 3) the sums of the numbers in each area marked off by dotted lines total the little number given in each of those areas. Now do what I tell you— solve!! psychosudoku@gmail.com

Custom Doesn't Mean Costly |Layaway Available Located in LeFleur’s Gallery 4800 I 55 N, Jackson | 601.665.4642 | beckhamjewelry.com

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18):

A London-based think tank does an annual study to determine which of the world’s countries offers the most freedom. The Legatum Institute measures indicators like civil liberties, social tolerance and the power to choose one’s destiny. The current champion is Luxembourg. Canada is in second place. France is 22nd, the U.S. is 26th and Italy 27th. Since I’m hoping you will markedly enhance your own personal freedom in the coming months, you might want to consider moving to Luxembourg. If that’s not an option, what else could you do? The time is ripe to hatch your liberation plans.

I love to see dumpsters that have been decorated by graffiti artists. Right now there’s one by the side of a busy road that I often drive down. Its drab gray exterior has been transformed into a splash of cartoon images and scripts. Amidst signatures that look like “Riot Goof” and “Breakfast Toys” and “Sky Blooms,” I can discern a ninja rhinoceros and a gold-crowned jaguar and an army of flying monkeys using squirt guns to douse a forest fire. I suspect it’s a perfect time to for you to be inspired by this spectacle, Pisces. What dumpster-like situation could you beautify?

ARIES (March 21-April 19):

Westward Ho! is the name of a village in southwestern England. Its name is impressive because of the exclamation point. But it’s not as dramatic as that of the only town on earth with two exclamation points: Saint-Louis-du-Ha! Ha!, which is in Quebec. I invite you Aries folks to be equally daring. According to my reading of the astrological omens, you have a cosmic mandate and poetic license to cram extra !!!!s into all your writing and speaking, and even add them to the spelling of your name! Why? Because this should be one of the most exciting and ebullient phases of your astrological cycle—a time to risk showing just how enthusiastic and energetic you are!!!!!

TAURUS (April 20-May 20):

The New York Film Critics Circle named Casey Affleck the Best Actor of the year for his role in the film “Manchester by the Sea.” In his acceptance speech at the award ceremony, Affleck gave a dramatic reading of quotes by David Edelstein, a prominent critic who has criticized his work. “Mumbly and mulish,” was one of Edelstein’s jabs about Affleck. “Doesn’t have a lot of variety,” was another. A third: “Whenever I see Affleck’s name in a movie’s credits, you can expect a standard, genre B picture—slowed down and tarted up.” I suspect that in the coming weeks, Taurus, you may get a vindication comparable to Affleck’s. I suggest you have wicked fun with it, as he did.

GEMINI (May 21-June 20):

The roulette wheels at casinos in Monaco have 37 pockets. Eighteen are black, 18 are red, and one is green. On any particular spin, the ball has just less than half a chance of landing in a red or black pocket. But there was one night back in August 1913 at the Casino de Monte-Carlo when probability seemed inoperative. The little white ball kept landing on the black over and over again. Gamblers responded by increasingly placing heavy bets on red numbers. They assumed the weird luck would soon change. But it didn’t until the 27th spin. (The odds of that happening were 136,823,184 to 1.) What does this have to do with you? I suspect you’re in a comparable situation—the equivalent of about 20 spins into an improbable streak. My advice: Don’t bet on the red yet.

CANCER (June 21-July 22):

Born to a religious mother on July 8, 1839, John D. Rockefeller amassed a fortune in the oil industry. Even in comparison to modern billionaires like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet, he’s the richest American who ever lived. “God gave me the money,” he said on numerous occasions. Now I’m going to borrow the spirit of Rockefeller’s motto for your use, Cancerian. Why? Because it’s likely you will be the recipient of blessings that prompt you to wonder if the Divine Wow is involved. One of these may indeed be financial in nature. (P.S.: Such boons are even more likely to transpire if you’re anchored in your sweet, dark wisdom and your holy, playful creativity.)

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22):

What influence do you need most in your life right now?

Are you suffering because you lack a particular kind of help or teaching? Would you benefit from having a certain connection that you have not yet figured out how to make? Is there a person or event that could heal you if you had a better understanding about how you need to be healed? The coming weeks will be a favorable time to get useful answers to these questions—and then take action based on what you discover.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22):

The next two weeks will be a favorable time to kiss the feet of helpful allies, but not to kiss the butts of clever manipulators. I also advise you to perform acts of generosity for those who will use your gifts intelligently, but not for those who will waste your blessings or treat you like a doormat. Here’s my third point: Consider returning to an old fork in the road where you made a wrong turn, and then making the correct turn this time. But if you do, be motivated by bright hope for a different future rather than by sludgy remorse for your error.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22):

In the beginning was the wild cabbage. Our ancestors found that it had great potential as food, and proceeded to domesticate it. Over the centuries, they used selective breeding to develop many further variations on the original. Kale and kohlrabi were the first to appear. By the 15th century, cauliflower had been created. Broccoli came along 100 years later, followed by Brussels sprouts. Today there are at least 20 cultivars whose lineage can be traced back to the wild cabbage. In my astrological opinion, you Libras are in a wild cabbage phase of your long-term cycle. In the coming months you can and should do seminal work that will ultimately generate an abundance of useful derivatives.

Community Animal Rescue & Adoption is DISH TV seeking Kennel Workers for its west Jackson DISH TV - BEST DEAL EVER! Only $39.99/mo. animal shelter. Provide direct support to dogs. Plus $14.99/mo Internet (where avail.) FREE Streaming. FREE Install (up to 6 rooms.) FREE Min wage; part-time hours. Requires ability to HD-DVR. Call 1-800-398-0901 lift and carry up to 50 pounds. Must be 18 years AT&T U-verse old with ability to work weekends/holidays. Call NEW AT&T INTERNET OFFER. $20 and $30/ Peggy at 601-922-7575 EOE mo plans available when you bundle. 99% Print and Digital Marketing Representative Reliable 100% Affordable. HURRY, OFFER We’re looking to add a special new member to ENDS SOON. New Customers Only. CALL NOW the JFP/BOOM Jackson sales team. You should 1-800-670-8371 have sales or customer service (retail, restaurant) Meet Singles! experience, along with a drive to build your career Meet singles right now! No paid operators, just while helping local businesses get ahead in the real people like you. Browse greetings, exchange Jackson Metro. You must be personable, outgoing, messages and connect live. Try it free. Call now: persistent, and willing to learn. Commission-driven 800-513-9842 position with a paid training period and access to benefits; potential $3,000-$5,000/mo and beyond! Visit our Jobs Page to apply. ♥ Flower Delivery Drivers ♥ Whitley’s Flowers 740 Lakeland Drive is looking for delivery drivers Monday Creation Seminar February 13 and Tuesday February 14. Creation/Evolution Understand the other Call Rob at 601-362-8844 side of the debate. Jan 29 - Feb 1. Sun 10am Equipment Operators and Laborers Wanted & 6pm, Mon-Wed 7pm. Springridge Church Our company is looking for Equipment - 3453 Springridge Road Raymond. www. Operators and Laborers for Overhead springridgechurch.com Power line work. Utility Construction Freon Wanted experience is preferred. Class A or B Drivers R12 collecting dust in your garage? We License is preferred. Work is located in the buy cylinders and cases of cans of R12 Vicksburg / Port Gibson area. Please go to freon! Call for pickup (312)291-9169 sell@ TeamPowerGroup.com to apply. refrigerantfinders.com Digital Media Intern Jackson Free Press seeks a part-time digital media intern for content creation, SEO tasks, website editing and e-mail newsletter creation 1999 Chevrolet Silverado and support. This paid, hourly position is excellent condition, 158,000 miles, 8 flexible and can be designed around classwork In Cylinders, Automatic transmission, $ 2100. or other work for the right candidate. Write all: 8023681861 todd at jacksonfreepress dot com with your resume and your availability.





Post an ad, call 601-362-6121, ext. 11 or fax to 601-510-9019. Deadline: Mondays at Noon.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21):

In 1733, workers finished building the New Cathedral in Salamanca, Spain. But if you go there today, you will see two seemingly modern elements on one facade: carvings of a helmeted astronaut and of a gargoyle licking an ice cream cone. These two characters were added by craftsmen who did renovations on the cathedral in 1992. I offer this vignette as metaphor for your life, Scorpio. It’s a favorable time to upgrade and refine an old structure in your life. And if you do take advantage of this opening, I suggest you add modern touches.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21):

I suspect that in the coming weeks, you will be afforded opportunities to bend the rules in ways that could make life simpler, more pleasurable and more successful—or all of the above. To help you deal with the issue of whether these deviations would have integrity, I offer you these questions: Would bending the rules serve a higher good, not just your selfish desires? Is there an approach to bending the rules that may ultimately produce more compassionate results than not bending the rules? Could you actually get away with bending the rules, both in the sense of escaping punishment and also in the sense of being loyal to your own conscience?

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19):

I don’t necessarily guarantee that you will acquire paranormal powers in the coming weeks. I’m not saying that you will be able to foretell the future or eavesdrop on conversations from a half-mile away or transform water into whiskey-flavored coffee. But I do suspect that you will at least tap further into a unique personal ability that has been mostly just potential up until now. Or you may finally start using a resource that has been available for a long time. For best results, open your imagination to the possibility that you possess dormant magic.

Homework: Say “I love you” at least 25 times a day for the next seven days. Report your results to Truthrooter@gmail.com.

Thank you coming soon: for your votes FRESHII 646 ERB and support! WATERLOO OPENING JANUARY 21, 2017

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20):

BULLE TIN BOARD: Classifieds As low as $25! SERVICES CARA Animal Shelter Needs Kennel Workers



------------- H E A LT H C A R E / W E L L N E S S ---------------The Headache Center

Kick it off with Broad Street

Renaissance at Colony Park, Suite #7205, Ridgeland, (601)366-0855 Accurately diagnoses headache syndromes and tailors an individualized treatment plan for you that includes lifestyle modification and FDA-approved medical treatments.

-------------------- HOME SERVICES -------------------Solar Control

291 US-51 E4, Ridgeland, MS 39157 (601)707-5596 Mississippi’s only full-service 3M Authorized window film dealer. Services include, residential, graffiti shield and automotive tinting.

Tri-county Tree Service

Jackson, (601)940-5499 Personalized and courteous services to valued customers in Madison, Hinds, Rankin or Jackson County. Contact us today for a FREE NO HASSLE ESTIMATE.

---------------------- AUTOMOTIVE ----------------------J & J Wholesale Service & Repair

Best King Cakes in Town: Freshly Baked Signature Buttery Brioche Real Cream Cheese Filling Feeds A Crowd

Order Yours Today!

3246 Hwy 80 W., Jackson, (601) 360-2444 Certified Technician, David Rucker, has 40+ years of experience. Mr. Rucker specializes in a/c, front end, part replacement, brakes, select services and repairs. Appointments only.

-------------------- BANKS/FINANCIAL ------------------Members Exchange

107 Marketridge Dr. Ridgeland, 5640 I-55 South Frontage Rd. Byram 101 MetroPlex Blvd. Pearl, (601)922-3250 Members Exchange takes the bank out of banking. You will know right away that you are not just a customer, you are a member.

Guaranty Trust

2 Professional Parkway, Ste A Ridgeland, (601)307-5008 Your friendly source for mortgage advice and service in FHA, USDA, VA, Jumbo and conventional mortgages.

------------------- FOOD/DRINK/GIFTS ------------------Beckham Jewelry

4800 N Hwy 55 #35, Jackson, (601)665-4642 With over 20 years experience Beckham Jewelry, manufactures, repairs and services all types of jewelry. Many repairs can be done the same day! They also offer full-service watch and clock repair.

Fondren Cellars

633 Duling Ave, Jackson, (769)216-2323 Quality wines and spirits in a relaxed environment. Voted Best Wine and Liquor store by Jackson Free Press readers.

Nandy’s Candy

Maywood Mart, 1220 E Northside Dr #380, Jackson, (601)362-9553 Small batch confections do more than satisfy a sweet tooth, they foster fond traditions and strong relationships. Plus, enjoy sno-balls, gifts for any occasion and more!

McDade’s Wine

Maywood Mart, 1220 E Northside Dr #320, Jackson, (601)366-5676 McDade’s Wine and Spirits offers Northeast Jackson’s largest showroom of fine wine and spirits. Visit to learn about the latest offerings and get professional tips from the friendly staff!

Playtime Entertainment

1009 Hampstead Blvd, Clinton, (601)926-1511 Clinton’s newest high energy video gaming and sports grille destination.

-------------------- TOURISM/ARTS ----------------------Mississippi Museum of Art

380 South Lamar St. Jackson, (601) 960-1515 MMA strives to be a fountainhead attracting people from all walks to discuss the issues and glories of the past and present, while continuing to inspire progress in the future.


2906 North State St. Suite 207, Jackson, (601) 292-7121 Jackson’s premiere music promoter with concerts around the Metro including at Duling Hall in Fondren. www.ardenland.net

January 25 - 31, 2017 • jfp.ms

Natural Science Museum


2148 Riverside Dr, Jackson, (601) 576-6000 Stop by the museum and enjoy their 300-acre natural landscape, an open-air amphitheater, along with 2.5 miles of nature trails. Inside, meet over 200 living species in the 100,000 gallon aquarium network.

Mississippi Children's Museum

2145 Museum Boulevard, Jackson, (601) 981-5469 The Mississippi Children’s Museum provides unparalleled experiences that ignite a thirst for discovery, knowledge and learning in all children through hands-on and engaging exhibits and programs focusing on literacy, the arts, science, health and nutrition.

---------------- BEAUTY SHOP/SALON ------------------Barnette’s Highland Bluff

1491 Canton Mart Rd. • Jackson, Mississippi • 601.956.7079

4400 Old Canton Rd, Jackson, (769) 230-4648 Barnette’s specializes in custom hair color as well as beautiful precision cuts.




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Finalist Best Bakery Best of Jackson 2017 Best Bakery Mississippi Magazine 2016 3013 N State St. Jackson 601-362-4628 123 Jones St. Madison 769-300-2790

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Mon-Sat M Sat 10 a.m.. to 6 p.m. t 601.362.9553t.BZXPPE.BSUt+BDLTPO .4tOBOEZTDBOEZDPN 601.362.9553 .BZXPPE.BSUt+BDLTPO .4tOBOEZTDBOEZDPN

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Saturday, January 28th at 9:30 am Central Mississippi Planning and Development District Office

Thank You To Our Customers For Making Us a Finalist in:

Best Local Fried Chicken Best Soul Food Best Lunch Counter or Buffet

Located between MS Sports Hall of Fame and Smith-Wills Stadium

Saturday, January 28th at 1:00 pm Flowood Library Sunday, January 29th at 4:00 pm Tougaloo College Owen's Health and Wellness Center Room 202 Young ladies in grades 9th-12th are invited along with their parent or legal guardian

Best Fried Chicken, Best of Jackson 2003 - 16

Ebony Pearls Foundation, Inc. is a 501 (c) (3) organization and is the charitable arm of Rho Lambda Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

707 N Congress St., Jackson | 601-353-1180 Mon thru Fri: 11am-2pm â&#x20AC;¢ Sun: 11am - 3pm

Thank you for nominating Country Squire Radio as Best Podcast



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Thank You! Best of Jackson 2017 Finalist

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Profile for Jackson Free Press Magazine

V15n21 - Best of Jackson 2017  

It's the 15th Annual Best of Jackson 2017!

V15n21 - Best of Jackson 2017  

It's the 15th Annual Best of Jackson 2017!