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OF 2010 PP 14-17




Doctor S, pp 18 - 25



December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011

Jesse Gallagher Sarah J Griff Howard Lori Carpenter Scroggins Ginger Rankin Brock Freeman

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December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011

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December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011



9 NO. 16


Hayne, Again The notorious medical examiner Dr. Steven Hayne resurfaces in a Jackson murder case.




Cover photograph of Gary Flowers Courtesy University of Southern Mississippi


THIS ISSUE: Give Me Money

30 31 32 33 34 36 37 42

Entergy wants a door left open to recoup losses—on ratepayers’ backs—for a failed nuclear reactor.

.............. Editor’s Note ............................. Talk ...................... Editorial ........................ Stiggers ............................ Zuga ...................... Opinion ...................... Opinion ................... Intriguing ................... Basketball .............................. Arts ......................... 8 Days .................. JFP Events ............... NYE Events ........... Music Listings ............................ Astro ............................ Food .................. Body/Soul

alisa ross At first glance, Alisa Ross appears to be a shy 17-year-old senior at Callaway High School. Standing 5-foot-6-inches tall, Ross, like other high school students, enjoys spending time with friends and family, going to church and shopping at the mall. But catch her on the basketball court, and she lights up with a fire in her eyes and a million-dollar smile after making a shot. Ross is a self-proclaimed “gym rat” who spends every chance she gets working on her game, and it has paid off. She is one of the top female basketball players in the state of Mississippi. Ross has been honored in several Mississippi publications and websites as one of the top basketball prospects in the state. At the beginning of the year, a committee of coaches selected Ross to play in the 2010 Mississippi Association of Coaches All-Star basketball game. The Jackson native has some pretty lofty goals as she finishes up her high-school career. “I would like to make the players around me better, win the 5A state championship, … and be named Ms. Basketball,” Ross says. She is an excellent passer, nearly doubling her assists from her junior year. Although her scoring is down this season so far, Ross still puts up a number of points on the scoreboard. She averages 15 points per game with three assists, 3.7 rebounds and two steals.

Even though she spends much of her time playing basketball, Ross does not let her studies slide. She has a 3.0 GPA and has qualified with the NCAA Clearing House with her ACT score of 16—making her eligible to play for NCAA division I or II sports in college. Ross plans to retake the ACT because she wants an even better score. As her days at Callaway begin to dwindle, Ross is looking forward to the April signing period for college basketball. She has seen interest from the University of Southern Mississippi, the U.S. Naval Academy, the U.S. Air Force Academy, Jackson State University and several others. “Staying close to home would be nice,” she says. “My parents have been great support to me, and I like the idea of knowing they can come watch me play on a regular basis and not need to take a flight to see me play.” The teen credits her father, Anson Ross, for her love of basketball. “He was the one who got me started playing and coached me to be a better player,” she says. Ross is looking forward to playing at Jackson Public Schools Pepsi Tournament Dec. 28 through 30, and the Martin Luther King Lady Hoop Festival in Vicksburg featuring top Mississippi and out-of-state teams Jan. 15, 2011. —Bryan Flynn

25 Fab Five It’s a basketball dream team, made up of the best college players in the Magnolia State.

28 R-Rated For local band J-TRAN, danceable music includes lyrics requiring a parental-advisory warning.

6 7 12 12 12 13 13 14 18


Doctor S Doctor S is the JFP’s sports consultant. He is a graduate of Miskatonic U. in Arkham, Mass., where he majored in Cthulhu Studies and was a member of the varsity 43-man squamish team. He wrote the College Basketball Preview.

Diandra Hosey A native of Bay Springs, Diandra Hosey played basketball at Jones County Junior College and Mississippi College. She received her law degree from MC School of Law and is an associate with the law offices of Matt Greenbaum. She wrote a sports feature.

Ward Schaefer JFP reporter Ward Schaefer came to Mississippi to teach middle school, and is now a journalist. His hometown of Chevy Chase, Md., was not named for the actor. He is slowly learning to play banjo. He wrote Talks and Most Intriguing profiles.

Kimberly Griffin Advertising Director Kimberly Griffin is a Jackson native who likes yoga, supporting locally owned businesses and traveling. In her spare time she plots how she can become Michelle Obama’s water holder.

Terri Cowart Freelance writer Terri Cowart lives in Vicksburg with her family. A lover of dark chocolate, she can’t live without “Days of Our Lives.” She wrote a food feature.

Jessica Kinnison Freelance writer Jessica Kinnison is a former JFP intern and graduate of Loyola University in New Orleans. She wrote the Body & Soul feature.

Lance Lomax

December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011

Lance Lomax received a master’s degree in mass communication from the University of Southern Mississippi in 2007. He is a manager and technical writer for a human-service transportation firm based in Ridgeland. He wrote a music piece.


Ashley Jackson Account Manager Randi Ashley Jackson is a Brandon/Reservoir area native. She loves organic gardening and her goldfish GillBert. She strives to be the next Food Network star chef, if only in her own mind. She manages JFP sales accounts.


by Todd Stauffer, Publisher

Common Sense in 2011


olitical junkies watched with some surprise as the lame-duck 2010 Congress passed a number of lastminute bills to bring the year to a close. Widely heralded as a week of “wins” for President Obama, the accomplishments are hopefully a bit of a harbinger of things to come. With Republicans taking firm control of the House and weakening the Democrats’ majority in the Senate, it would be nice to see the GOP start to take the business of governing more seriously and leave their “Party of No” signs in the cloakroom. The lame-duck session offered lessons for liberals as well. Perhaps the most impressive feat for the Obama administration was the end of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”—mostly because it was done in exactly the way the president wanted it done, by act of Congress, not by court mandate. While many liberals howled in anger when the administration chose to fight court cases that might have overturned DODT this summer and fall, Obama’s strategy was vindicated. Now, DODT is effectively and completely overturned within 60 days, instead of dragging through the courts for what could have been years. Pretty much no one is happy with the tax compromise that occurred in this session, with both liberals and conservatives complaining that if their party had waited until the new year, they could have gotten more of what they wanted. The truth is, this is probably good economic policy in the short term. The payrolltax holiday will offer the most direct stimulus to the economy thus far. And while I’d prefer to see marginal tax rates on the top two income levels return to Clinton-era numbers, I understand that any tax increases are best held on to until the economy is firing on all cylinders. These tax rates should have been higher during the 2000s, when revenues would have been much easier to capture and retain. When times are flush, the coffers should be filled, not emptied further. When times are lean, governments spend. Over Christmas weekend, we made a whirlwind trip from Jackson to Savannah, Ga., and back to Neshoba County in about 72 hours total; one thing we saw were miles and miles of improved highways and infrastructure, and we heard tales of more finished construction throughout the Southeast. The original Obama stimulus may have taken a while to get rolling, but the evidence is that we’re still bearing that fruit. (President Obama himself recently said that one of the things he’s learned in his first two years in office is that “there’s no such thing as a shovel-ready project.”) Now, stimulus will come in the form of additional dollars in the paychecks of working folks, which will no doubt find their way back into the economy. (Hopefully not exclusively at Walmart. Think local, y’all.) And, yes, thanks to this compromise, we’re set for some dramatic debates on tax

policy in the next few years. I, for one, hope that they’re fruitful debates and that conservatives decide to come at them honestly and intently, and not just with more obfuscation and obstructionism. As Obama said this past week of the GOP (paraphrasing Spider Man), “With greater power comes greater responsibility.” Here’s praying the Republicans take that to heart. Recently I’ve been reading a book called “Political Common Sense for America: The Creation of the Franklin Party.” This book, which appears to be self-published, begins as a parable and ends with a treatise and platform for the formation of a third party, called The Franklin Party. The premise for the party is that “common sense,” simplicity and full individual participation should prevail. (More info at While I don’t agree with every plank in the platform (some of it is a bit too xenophobic and “tough on crime” for my taste) the book does lend itself to the argument that many conservative and liberal principles can co-exist if they’re not specifically designed to explode on impact. Ideas like a flat tax, health care directly from the provider, and radical new rules for ending our reliance on fossil fuels are real winners—not always for the special interests that currently buy elections, but for the actual country that these officials are supposed to be governing. The likelihood of the Franklin Party taking hold seems limited—aside from a blog, a newsletter and a Squidoo page, there doesn’t seem to be much organization there. But the need for “common sense” in politics remains. For two years we’ve watched the GOP in Congress spend entirely too much time

trying to block President Obama. In two weeks, we got a much better sense of what progress can look like if there’s some giveand-take among the parties and branches of government. Likewise, I think we’ve seen the benefits of President Obama’s focus on the “long view” and his patient approach to governance—leadership we’ll need going into this next Congress. In 2011, we need government aimed squarely at growing this economy, not just to increase consumer spending, but with an eye to the future of industry in the U.S. We’ve got a green infrastructure we could be building, a bio-tech industry poised for rapid growth, and a maturing Internet economy that needs care and feeding. I’d love to see a revamped, simplified tax structure—not to mention an emphasis on educating children—looking toward a future of smarter, professional Americans ready to lead the world again in math, science and the arts. Accomplishing these things will require leaders interested not in smaller government for small government’s sake, but rather in good government: efficient, effective … and sensible. Mississippi is sending an almost completely Republican delegation to Washington in 2011; we need to demand from them not party fealty or ideological purity, but common sense. They work for us, not their lobbyist benefactors. Mississippi needs smart progress, not just corporate welfare. And we need a government that works for us, not one that shuts down over winnertake-all party politics. Let’s watch our delegation closely and hold them accountable for sensible governance for our state and country.


in Palmer staggered out of Jackson City Hall the evening of Dec. 20 visibly angry and frustrated as he joined other JATRAN riders to load the city buses that had transported them to a public hearing regarding cuts to the city’s bus system. He balled up his fist as he predicted what would happen when city residents could not get to work anymore. “You got 21 jobs you want to cut? How are you going to replace them?” he asked. “… I use the bus for everything. I used to bus to get here. When I go to work, I use the bus. I use the bus to get to doctors appointments. If I want to go to Taco Bell, I use the bus. If man can’t get to work, he can’t eat. If a man can’t work to eat, he will steal.” Ward 2 Chokwe Lumumba says that the city’s proposal to cut JATRAN routes and layoff drivers is retaliation over a $1.5 collective-bargaining agreement the Amalgamated Transit Union won in October. “The only reason this is being proposed is because the workers were successful in wining their challenge to the city,” Lumumba said after the Dec. 20 public hearing “… I come from a working-class family. The only reason workers have anything in this country is because they fought for it. They were punished for collective bargaining. I think everyone on the City Council should be opposing it.” Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. informed Jackson City Council members in November that the city will have to shell out $984,000 in


JATRAN Cuts: A Long Time Coming?

Jackson resident Kin Palmer, who depends on JATRAN for transportation, predicted that cutting bus routes will lead to an increase in crime.

back pay, vacation and other costs in January, and include an extra $560,000 in next year’s city budget to fund wage increases for the city’s 49 unionized bus drivers and 14 maintenance employees. The mayor added that the $560,000 represents a recurring annual 3-percent increase in wages that may increase as the cost-of-living dictates. Before Christmas, the city held three public hearings at different locations to allow residents to speak about the proposed cuts. Lu-

by Lacey McLaughlin

mumba attended every hearing. Council President Frank Bluntson, Ward 5 Councilman Charles Tillman and Ward 6 Councilman Tony Yarber attended the Dec. 20 hearing. For the past few years, the city has questioned the sustainability of JATRAN. Last January, the city unveiled 16 new JATRAN buses, costing $4 million, financed primarily through federal grants. The upgrades came only after Council members approved a consent decree with the U.S. Department of Justice after advocates for the disabled—including the Mississippi Coalition for Citizens with Disabilities, and the Mississippi Council for the Blind—sued the city in 2008 for failing to provide buses with operative lifts, denying transit trips to the disabled and failing to adequately train staff members on dealing with disabled passengers, among other complaints. The consent decree required the city pay up to $139,000 over the next three years to finance an Americans with Disabilities Act coordinator, who will monitor the JATRAN system for disability compliance. During that time, JATRAN Operations Planner Arthur Gaudet told the Council that it would have to make tough decisions in the future regarding financing the bus system. Lumumba criticized the administration for not planning for its financial woes better. He suggested the city tap its reserve fund to offset the $1.5 million in fees. He also recommended that the city offer service to the surJATRAN, see page 8




e would love to be able to report that everyone made stellar decisions in 2010. Such is not the case, however. See if you can match the individual or entity with a bad decision made last year. No fair peeking at the answers! DECISION a. Jumping on the tea-party bandwagon b. Cancelling the prom c. Mistaking a weight belt for a paddle d. Deepwater drilling e. Little focus on jobs f. Talking g. “Spiderman: The Musical” h. Kemper County coal plant i. Personhood Initiative j. Adopting “anchor baby” rhetoric ANSWERS: 1-I, 2-F, 3-C, 4-B, 5-A, 6-H, 7-J, 8-D, 9-E, 10-G

DECIDER 1. Malcolm Harrison 2. Gov. Haley Barbour 3. Murrah High School Coach Marlon Dorsey 4. Itawamba School Board 5. Kim Wade 6. Public Service Commission 7. Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant 8. BP 9. President Barack Obama 10. Broadway

haphaza rd

“The cuts seem haphazard and concentrated in northeast Jackson. I am concerned about that.” —Ward 1 City Councilman Jeff Weill regarding proposed cuts to the city’s JATRAN bus system.

Oliver Bass’ one wish for the New Year is a job, p 11

Wednesday, Dec. 22 President Barack Obama signs the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, which will allow gays and lesbians to serve openly in the U.S. military. … Leflore County Sheriff Ricky Banks says DNA tests on the rope that hung Frederick Jermaine Carter confirm his death was a suicide because no other DNA is present. Thursday, Dec. 23 The United States Chemical Safety Board says it has been shut out of analyzing the blowout preventer at the root of the BP Gulf oil disaster this summer in favor of the companies that built and used it, undermined the investigation’s credibility. Friday, Dec. 24 Hou Yifan, a 16-year-old Chinese chess player, becomes the youngest world chess champion by defeating Ruan Lufei in the Women’s World Chess Championship, toppling a record held since 1978. … The U.S. Senate adjourns prior to confirming 19 federal judgeships, including that of James Graves Jr., nominated to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Saturday, Dec. 25 Historians reveal the contents of an encrypted 6-line message to Confederate commander Lt. Gen. John C. Pemberton in Vicksburg dated July 4, 1863, the date of Pemberton’s surrender: Reinforcements are not on the way. Sunday, Dec. 26 A post-Christmas blizzard strands thousands of travelers from the Carolinas to New England. … Jackson begins its “Save One for the Chipper” tree recycling program for residents through Jan. 3. Monday, Dec. 27 British police charge nine men for “engaging in conduct in preparation for acts of terrorism” following raids in three cities. … President Barack Obama ranks as the man most admired by Americans for the third straight year in an annual USA Today-Gallup poll. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton takes the most-admired woman spot for the ninth year in a row. Tuesday, Dec. 28 WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange announces publishing deals for his autobiography, which could bring him $1.7 million. … Holiday retail sales rose 5.5 percent, exceeding predictions. … Frigid overnight temperatures see Jackson’s homeless shelters filling up early.

news, culture & irreverence

Canadian clergyman and physician James Naismith invented basketball as a vigorous indoor winter sport. The first ball was a soccer ball, and the first goals were wooden peach baskets affixed to the gymnasium walls.


Public schools do more than educate children. They measure a city’s pride. They reflect community. They predict the social and economic well-being of a city’s future. For 20 years, Parents for Public Schools of Jackson has worked to keep our public schools strong, to empower parents as leaders for positive change, and to engage community support of our public schools.

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news, culture & irreverence

JATRAN, from page 7

rounding suburbs to increase ridership, or use the buses to transport Jackson Public Schools students who could use vouchers to ride them. City spokesman Chris Mims said dipping into the reserve fund would not be a long-term solution to make JATRAN sustainable. “About $600,000 of this—at least—is going to be money that has to be carried forward in upcoming years budgets,” Mims said. “If we were able to take money from the reserve funds to offset it this year, that money would not necessarily be there in the reserve fund in the year coming up.” Ward 1 Councilman Jeff Weill has advocated in the past to cut the bus system because more taxpayers finance the bus system than those who use the service. The Dec. 28 coun-

cil meeting will be the last meeting for Weill, and on Tuesday morning, he was still undecided about his vote. The majority of cut routes are in Weill’s ward, and he said he would like to see consolidation of services rather than cutting routes altogether. “The cuts seem haphazard and concentrated in northeast Jackson. I am concerned about that,” he said. On Tuesday afternoon, JATRAN employees offered suggestions for additional amendments to the proposal during the city’s planning committee meeting in a last-minute attempt to work out a comprise with infuriated JATRAN riders and bus drivers. The City Council did not vote on the issue Tuesday. Watch for updates.

Empowerment and Heritage

Founding Chapter, Parents for Public Schools, 1989 200 N. Congress, Suite 500, Jackson, MS 39201


ifteen-year-old Elijah Jamison stood ganizer Akil Bakari to explain the historical somberly behind a table decorated significance of Haiti and how it relates to with a red, black and green African self-determination. Lumumba gave a firstflag as he lit a candle in honor of ku- hand account of refugee camps where citijichagulia—Swahili for the Kwanzaa prin- zens lacked food and adequate shelter while ciple of self-determination. insect bites covered small children’s skin. “Self determination, from my perspec- But since long before the earthquake, Haiti tive, means in simple terms that you would has been an oppressed society. After gaining do anything to fight and save the world,” independence as the first black republic in the young aspiring minister said. the western hemisphere, France forced the The weeklong Kwanzaa celebration, country to pay reparations in 1825—perheld at the Medgar Evers Community manently destroying the country’s wealth. Center through Jan. 1, “Imagine that, is in honor of the Afrithis country comes in can American holiday and says it’s to occupy that affirms the dignity you, or you have to pay of humanity, tradition this country because and culture through its you deprived them of seven principles: unity, your expected slavery,” self determination, colBakari said. lective work and respect, The country has cooperative economics, also victim to corporate purpose, and creativity greed and devastating and faith. United Nations poliStanding in front cies, Lumumba said. of a portrait of the “Haiti’s struggle late civil-rights leader Elijah Jamison lights a candle for liberation is our Medgar Evers, Jamison symbolizing self-determination struggle for liberation,” joined Ward 2 Coun- during a Kwanzaa celebration at he said. the Medgar Evers Community cilman and Malcolm Center Dec. 27. The ceremony X Grassroots Moveended with an umojaa ment member Chokwe circle, in which all parLumumba, who explained the significance ticipants held hands and took turns saying of the flag. Red represents the blood people what kujichagulia meant to them. Children shed for liberation, black represents the spoke about the desire to fufill their divine people, and green represents the land stolen purposes. A man paid homage to Bob from African ancestors. Marley. One woman broke down in tears Attendees watched a clip from the as she vowed to educate others about racial film “Haiti: The Untold Story.” Earlier this discrimination that still persists in Missisyear, Lumumba and other members of the sippi today—even though she claimed she Malcolm X Grassroots Movement went on lost her job for speaking out. As the smell a fact-finding mission to the country after of curried chicken drifted into the coma major earthquake in January, 2010. Dur- munity center for that night’s karamu feast, ing a panel discussion, Lumumba joined we held up thimble-sized cups of water and Jackson State University Professor Safiya toasted each other, then ended the ceremoOmari, long-time Chicago educator Han- ny chanting “Harambee,” Swahili for “Let’s nibal Arfik and Malcolm X Grassroots or- all pull together.”

December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011


by Lacey McLaughlin



by Ward Schaefer

The Doctor is Still In ing away from him. “We are pleased to announce that Steven Hayne, M.D., will be available immediately to assist criminal defense attorneys in the State of

Mississippi,” the undated letter from Hayne’s company, Madison-based Pathology Consultations Inc., read. The letter added that Hayne has testified in more than 4,500 court cases and repeated his misleading claim to be “board certified” in forensic pathology. Hayne has previously claimed to be certified by the American Board of Forensic Pathology, an obscure organization that folded in the early 1990s. He failed the American Board of Pathology licensing examination, the widely accepted standard for certifying forensic pathologists. House Bill 1456, passed by the Mississippi Legislature last March, implicitly targeted Hayne’s lack of certification by mandating that county coroners may only hire medical examiners who are licensed doctors with American Board of Pathology certification. It does not cover judicial appointments for medical examiners in specific cases, however. The bill was a response to news, publicized by Balko in August 2009, that some county coroners were planning to band together to hire medical examiners not on the DPS list of approved pathologists. A group of coroners obtained a legal opinion from Attorney General Jim Hood granting legitimacy to new “districts” of counties to contract with pathologists without state approval. The Mississippi Innocence Project, which has successfully won exonerations for two men wrongfully convicted on Hayne’s testimony, pushed for a bill preventing the tactic. Allowing county coroners to circumvent a state-approved list would have made reform of the state medical examiner’s office difficult, Mississippi Innocence Project Executive Director Tucker Carrington said. “There were plenty of problems with a (new) state medical examiner coming here, because of the history of how that office had been treated,” Carrington said. “If you’re a state medical examiner … at the very least you’d like to think that the pathologist who you’re overseeing was licensed by the governing body. That was our other thought—let’s make it a more attractive job for people.”



r. Steven Hayne may have built a name—and notoriety—for himself with prosecution-friendly autopsy testimony, but it was a defense request that may bring him into a Jackson murder case as an independent expert. For two decades, Hayne was Mississippi’s de facto state medical examiner, although the state Legislature never officially appointed him to that post. He handled thousands of autopsies and delivered prosecution-friendly findings—some later discredited—in many of them. In 2008, Public Safety Commissioner Steve Simpson finally removed him from a list of approved medical examiners following the exonerations of several men whom Hayne had implicated with his “expert testimony.” The state then temporarily contracted with a Tennessee-based firm to provide forensic pathology services before hiring its first official medical examiner in November 2010. Nevertheless, on Dec. 9, Hinds County Circuit Judge Swan Yerger granted Assistant Public Defender Alison Kelly’s request for an independent autopsy review by Hayne. Kelly represents Darion Givens, 18, who faces murder charges in connection with the June 13 shooting death of his girlfriend, Falisha Miller, a Jim Hill High School student. In court filings, Kelly argued that a second opinion of Miller’s autopsy is necessary to examine inconsistencies in the first autopsy, conducted by Dr. Thomas Deering. Witnesses reported hearing a gunshot, while Deering’s autopsy suggested that Miller’s shooter had used a silencer. Kelly maintains that Jasper Bell, who is charged as an accessory after the fact, was the shooter. Kelly said this week that for Givens’ case, Hayne was the “best choice for defending [her] client in the most zealous manner.” While aware of controversy surrounding Hayne, Kelly said that she had not thoroughly investigated criticism of his work. Kelly did not seek out a forensic pathologist from the state medical examiner’s office because she wanted a second opinion on work performed by that office. “In the state of Mississippi, Dr. Hayne is the only (forensic pathologist) that I know of, other than these people that the state is bringing into Mississippi to do their pathology work,” Kelly said. “I’m limited. I can’t use their pathologists to do my cross-examination of their reports.” While he no longer carries the Department of Public Safety’s blessing, individual judges or prosecutors can still hire Hayne. In addition, as Reason Magazine’s Radley Balko—who first uncovered Hayne’s questionable cases—reported Dec. 6, Hayne must still appear in court regularly to discuss autopsies he performed before 2008. When Simpson removed him from the approved list in August 2008, Hayne had a backlog of 400 to 500 autopsy reports to complete in 90 days. Balko also obtained a letter from earlier this year marketing Hayne to defense attorneys, indicating that prosecutors may be shy-



by Adam Lynch

Entergy Seeks $51 Million for Failed Reactor

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December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011

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risk that “utilities do not want to take.” Leonard told Reuters that to make nuclear affordable for Entergy, he would have see “double-digit natural-gas prices” and that KRISTIN BRENEMEN


ntergy Mississippi Inc. is requesting $51 million in reimbursements over a stalled nuclear-reactor project at its Grand Gulf nuclear-power plant. Entergy filed an application with the Mississippi Public Service Commission in October, which, on approval, would allow the company to charge ratepayers for costs it incurred while unsuccessfully trying to construct Grand Gulf Unit 3 in Claiborne County. “The commission’s approval of the accounting treatment and other relief sought herein simply preserves the company’s right to seek at some future time recovery of prudently incurred costs and expenses incurred and to be incurred related to the development (of) Grand Gulf 3,” the Oct. 29 filing stated. The company ran up $51 million in planning, evaluation and monitoring fees while trying to develop a Westinghouse reactor, including $27.8 million in specific site costs, $21.8 million in generic project development and $1.5 million in companyspecific costs. Entergy selected a GE-Hitachi design for the new reactor, but the U.S. Department of Energy ranked Entergy’s application at No. 7 in terms of importance, in a race where only projects ranking at third or fourth place would have access to the federal government’s $18.5 billion cap on loan guarantees, according to testimony from Entergy’s Vice President of Nuclear Business Development Kenneth Hughey. He said Entergy failed to reach a contract with GE-Hitachi due to cost overruns during the planning phase. “The last estimate GE-Hitachi provided, in late 2008, was approximately 147 percent higher than their mid-2006 estimates,” Hughey testified, adding that Entergy requested the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, which approves the construction of every nuclear plant, to suspend its consideration for the Grand Gulf 3 project Jan. 9, 2009. After the company decided to suspend its license request for the Grand Gulf expansion and a second reactor in Louisiana, Entergy Corp. Chief Executive Wayne Leonard said in May that building nuclear-power plants was a

Congress would have to set a price on carbon emitted by utility plants. The American Power Act—an energy proposal that the GOP helped shoot down in 2010—included cap-and-trade legislation that would have put a limit on the amount of carbon a power company can put into the atmosphere. To avoid reaching that cap, a carbon-emitting company could have purchased carbon permits from another power-producing company that has earned permits by investing in renewable or non-carbon-producing sources such as solar or nuclear technology. Despite the death of cap-and-trade legislation that would have made the plant affordable, Entergy still considers the project “to be in its early stages,” and describes its development as “proceeding at a measured pace.” Entergy says it will seek to “preserve existing nuclear site options … so as to be able to continue to consider the project as a feasible option … for the (year) 2024 period and beyond.” As of June 30, 2010, however, Entergy Mississippi incurred approximately $51.1 million, and intends to hold open the option of charging ratepayers for current and future costs in the development of the plant. The company proposes creation of an Allowance for Funds Used During Con-

struction account, which defers the costs, but makes recovery possible in the future. The account does not produce revenue for the company but will add to the total capitalized cost of the plant, allowing Entergy to get a return on its investment if the plant is ever included in the rate base. Entergy said in its October filing that it is not currently seeking money to cover the lost investment, including “any increase in rates or any change in its present rate schedules now on file with the (Mississippi Public Service) Commission.” However, Mississippi Sierra Club Director Louie Miller said the company should not look for ratepayers to cover the failed start-up, not even in the future. “If anybody should be paying for Entergy’s failure to build this thing, it ought to be Entergy stockholders, not ratepayers who will never see this thing working,” Miller said. “It was their fault they went with Hitachi, not ours. Other power companies got their plans together, so why do we have to pay for this failure? Miller opposes expanding nuclear power in the state until utility companies figure out “where to put all the nuclear waste,” which stays toxic for thousands of years. Miller compared the cost to the Mississippi Beef Processors plant fiasco, which cost Mississippi taxpayers about $55 million after the plant failed within weeks of opening in 2004. “We’ve made a lot of political hay out of the beef plant, and this is like another beef plant,” Miller said. “At least they built the beef plant. This, they’re not even going to build, and they want us to cover it.” Entergy Mississippi Communications Manager Joey Lee pointed out that nuclearbased electricity is one of the cheapest forms of electricity available, after getting past the construction costs. He said the company’s request before the PSC was merely “a formality,” to the keep the project alive for a future construction date. “Nuclear is the most reasonably-priced fuel out there, so it’s important to keep this option open for the customers in order to keep the rates as low as we possibly can,” Lee said.

by Adam Lynch


Not So Happy New Year

Unemployed Vietnam veteran Oliver Bass is slated to lose his Habitat home in January if he does not pay $1,056, plus attorney’s fees.


ackson resident Oliver Bass, a 56-yearold Vietnam veteran, has been unable to get a job since 2009. He has experience in machine operation and cooking, and he can run a forklift. He says he will take any job and has applied at restaurants and warehouses all over the city. “They say either I don’t have the right experience or I’m too old,” Bass said. “Well, they really say I’m overqualified, which means you’re too old.” Habitat for Humanity sold Bass and his wife, Julia, a home at 215 Maple Drive in 2006, where they lived until she divorced him in March and returned to New Orleans. Bass said the misery of his long-term unemployment contributed to the divorce. The clock ran out on his 99-week unemployment insurance cap in October, and now Bass will likely lose his Habitat for Humanity home in January after running about $1,000 behind in mortgage payments. Bass’ Habitat for Humanity home sits amid a neighborhood of similar homes filling the area around Jaycee Park, and he is an example of what could be in store for a lot of people next year, regardless of Congress’ agreement to extend unemployment insurance benefits this month. Heidi Shierholz, a labor economist with the Economic Policy Institute in Washington, D.C., explained that all Congress and the president agreed to do as part of their last-minute tax-cut plan in December was extend the filing deadline for unemployment insurance for people who run out of their state-funded unemployment insurance benefits. “That allows people to file for federally paid-for unemployment benefits until 2012, but it does not extend your benefits if you’ve already passed the federal (99-week) cut-off,” Shierholz said. “There’s a lot of confusion there, but people need to know that this extension does not necessarily mean you’ll be getting any more benefits if you’ve been without a job for too long.” Bass is currently $1,056.26 behind in his mortgage payment, and Cimarron Mortgage Company, which finances his Habitat home, informed him in a Dec. 9 letter that they had approved his home for foreclosure. Habitat for Humanity is willing to help him avoid foreclosure costs if he signs the property deed over to

Habitat and vacates the premises. In exchange, Habitat will pay Bass $500 to save him the cost of any attorney’s fees. If he refuses to sign over the deed, however, Habitat warned that Cimarron will move forward with foreclosure and hold Bass accountable for the $1,056.26 he owes, plus attorney’s fees, which could run up to an extra $1,000. Habitat for Humanity Metro Jackson Executive Director Cindy Griffin would not comment on Bass’ situation, but said the group offers financial counseling and works with families experiencing hard times to reduce the size of their house payments and put together a budget. Average monthly mortgage payments for Habitat homes in the Jackson metro area are between $275 and $325 a month, which includes taxes and insurance. “We work with families who have come into difficult financial situations as long as possible to get them back on track and ensure successful homeownership,” Griffin said. In a Dec. 9 letter to Bass, Griffin warned that foreclosure would start on Jan. 9 if he could not bring his past-due payments up to date. “We helped you set up a payment plan; however, you did not adhere to it,” she stated. Bass said that no payment plan—no matter how generous—would work as long as he has no income. Officials at Cimarron Mortgage Company would not comment on customer issues. Whitney Barkley, an AmeriCorps legal fellow who works at the Mississippi Center for Justice’s foreclosure-prevention program, said she expects another surge in foreclosures over the next couple of years as more unemployment-insurance payments cap out at their 99week maximum. Bloomberg BusinessWeek reported Dec. 13 that the number of U.S. homes worth less than the debt owed on them dropped in the third quarter, but that this was largely because homeowners took the next step and entered into foreclosure. Mortgage default rates are highest in Nevada, Arizona, California and Florida; Mississippi’s rates fall somewhere in the middle. “Right now we’re not at the top in terms of foreclosure rates,” said Barkley, who added that expiring unemployment insurance was only the start of the problem. “Most analysts expect another surge of

foreclosures as adjustable-rate mortgages taken out in 2005 and 2006 begin to reset after their five-year rate. Adjustable rate mortgages allow a (low) payment for five years, which goes up after five years. A lot of people get into these expecting to refinance, but now in the new economy they’re finding that refinancing is impossible, or they’ve lost their job and gotten behind and no longer qualify for a fixed-rate mortgage.” Shierholz said Mississippi will suffer greatly as more Mississippians reach the 99week limit: “On a national level, the impact varies, but the end of UI benefits will have a huge impact upon your local area if your area is suffering high unemployment,” she said. Unemployment is particularly bad among African Americans like Bass. The Economic Policy Institute reports that while unemployment among Mississippi whites is only at 6.6 percent, unemployment among blacks is 17 percent. “If unemployment remains high ... you can still expect the loss of unemployment benefits to have a terrible effect,” Shierholz said. “That’s why extending benefits, even if it is expensive to do so, is one of the better forms of stimulus, because that money goes directly back into the economy. The unemployed have no choice but to spend it.” But economic aid in the form of extending unemployment payments beyond the 99week maximum is slim in the incoming 112th Congress, with a Republican majority in the House. Republicans revealed a jarring indifference to extending UI benefits throughout 2009. In July, U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker, RMiss., was among many Republicans voting “no” on a cloture vote on H.R. 4213, a bill seeking to extend unemployment benefits to jobless workers who had yet to reach the 99week cap. In November, Wicker joined Sen. Thad Cochran, R-Miss., in submitting a letter vowing to block all legislation, including legislation extending unemployment benefits again, if Republican senators could not get from the Democratic majority an extension of tax cuts for wealthy Americans, those making more than $250,000 a year. Democrats were already willing to allow tax cuts for the wealthy on any income they made below $250,000, but Republicans argued that was not enough. Oddly, the Nov. 29 letter to Majority Leader Harry Reid demanding tax cuts for the wealthy begins with the statement: “the nation’s unemployment level, stuck near 10 percent, is unacceptable to Americans.” Bass says he entered the holiday season with a heavy heart, knowing what January is bringing. “I have no reason to have my hopes up,” Bass said. “Maybe I can work out something, but if there’s no job, there’s no job, so there’s not much I can work out (with Habitat). Why won’t someone just hire me? I can show up for work better than any high schooler. They just won’t give me a chance.”

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opining, grousing & pontificating


End Mindless ‘Tough-on-Crime’ Policies


few weeks ago, the Jackson Free Press published a lengthy cover story exposing the mindless politics behind juvenile-justice policies that treat children as adults and end up turning many children into hardened adult criminals, increasing dangerous crime rather than making society safer. The response to the story was encouraging—one judge, who must remain unnamed, even wrote to thank us for educating him about these issues. However, as Mississippi heads into an election year, we are not very hopeful that intelligence will blanket the state capitol when it comes to passing the kinds of criminal-justice policies that actually work, but have little appeal to someone trying to get elected on empty “tough-on-crime” promises. You know the drill in our state: Ultra-conservatives rant a lot about all the thugs taking over (often using old statistics out of context; ahem, governor), and even those who pretend to be more progressive (ahem, attorney general) try to one-up conservative opponents with the kind of policies that are costly and do little or nothing to make our state safer. From state executions to laws that allow unqualified medical examiners to help send innocent people to prison, it’s an idiotic drill that has been hard to change, regardless of the actual facts. But there is a glimmer of hope on the horizon. Reason magazine editor Radley Balko, who runs his column at every Tuesday, wrote this week about conservatives who are actually rethinking policies such as mandatory minimum sentences for drug offenders, and even starting to support smart options such as rehabilitation rather than incarceration for nonviolent offenders. The Texas Public Policy Foundation just launched Right on Crime, a think tank to convince conservatives to change the way they approach criminal justice. The site quotes Reagan attorney general Ed Meese and Texas Gov. Rick Perry in support, and states: “[R]esearch suggested that (incarceration) reached a point of diminishing returns, as recidivism rates increased and more than one million nonviolent offenders filled the nation’s prisons.” It also pointed out numbers that are hard to ignore in touch economic times: Prisons (many private) are absorbing 85 percent of corrections funds, strapping communities’ ability to afford smarter options like probation, parole and rehabilitation. This effort out of tough-on-crime Texas is encouraging. We urge Mississippi lawmakers to get on board and start thinking smarter about criminal policy for adults and children that will actually make our state safer and save taxpayers money (even if their private prisons donors don’t like it). We are living in a time when we cannot afford the kinds of empty sloganeering that leads to dumb public policy while violating the rights of Americans, including innocent ones.


The Good Foot

December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011



r. Announcement: “Welcome to ‘Cooking with Fat Meat,’ the culinary arts television show that adds a whole lot of flavor to your life. On today’s show, Chef Fat Meat presents foods that might bring good fortune into the new year.” Chef Fat Meat: “Greetings fellow culinary artists and food connoisseurs. What a year it has been. America and the world have experienced some crucial events that will soon be forgotten at 12:01 a.m. on New Years Day—like that three-month-long Gulf Coast oil spill, the earthquakes in Haiti, Argentina and Chile, and the political squabbles between the conservatives, tea-party folks, liberals and President Obama. “Nevertheless, I’m ready to begin the new year on the ‘good foot’ by recommending these delicious meals: “Collard Greens seasoned with a ham hock represent money and prosperity; “Black-eyed Peas seasoned with some smoked hog jowls means extra change in your pockets all year long; “Pork Roast, the other white meat, represents progress for the new year. “And don’t forget the crackling cornbread with plenty of pork skins to eat with the collard greens and black-eyed peas. “I must add that these recommended meals come with a nutritional health warning: Heavy consumption of pork products may cause hypertension. So be sure to have your high blood pressure medicine and other home remedies ready when eating lots of pork and celebrating the new year. “Here’s a toast to the new year with a cup of warm water and applecider vinegar.”

YOUR TURN by Nicole Marquez

Homage to a Shirley Temple


on’t go far. Mommy won’t be long.” I stood there in my first-grade Saint Richard Catholic School uniform as my mother disappeared to the back patio of Hal & Mal’s. The meeting she was attending was about a three-day music festival called Jubilee!JAM. As I watched a team of adults make big gestures with their hands and write furiously on notepads, my attention quickly shifted to the front of Hal & Mal’s. As we walked in, I had seen different framed illustrations of animals from the Jackson Zoo, so I decided to get a closer look. Only when I was making my way to the front did I notice a kind-looking man behind the bar. My mother always told me not to talk to strangers, a rule I never obeyed. There was a vibrant ruby-red bar stool that caught my eye and began calling my name. It said, “Sit on me, Nicole, please!” I climbed the stool like I was scaling Mount Everest. The nice man asked me if I needed help, to which I replied, “Oh, no, I’ve done this before.” We both knew I was lying, but after a short struggle, I made it to the top. “Well, Miss,” he said, “what can I do for you?” “I’m bored,” I replied. “You’re bored?” he bounced back. “Where is your mama?” “Oh, she is in some grown-up meeting in the back,” I replied. I asked him what his name was. Cotton, he told me. I don’t think he often saw a first-grade girl at his bar; nonetheless, I began asking him 20 questions. He answered each and every question with patience and a smile. When I took a moment to think of another question—and to breathe—he took his cue and asked me if I had ever had a Shirley Temple. “No,” I said. “What is it?”

He told me it was something he was making just for me. I watched as he got a jar of cherries from underneath the bar, picking the fattest and most ripe ones and putting them into my glass. He then filled the glass with the perfect amount of ice and used the multi-drink dispenser to pour Coca-Cola into the glass. When the fizz settled down, it was just right. I took one of the straws from the bar, stuck it into my drink and started sipping. I was speechless. It was sooo good! By that time, my mother was done with her meeting and scouring the restaurant to find me. You can imagine the look of astonishment on her face, seeing her first-grade daughter at a bar sipping on a drink. Not to cause a scene, she calmly asked me what I was doing and what I was drinking? “A Shirley Temple, Mom!” I said, and she quickly followed with: “Well, how did you pay for it?” Cotton politely convened and said, “With her smile.” He had quickly diffused any scolding that possibly awaited me in the car ride home. After that first introduction to Hal & Mal’s, I was addicted, to say the least. Whenever I was good, my mom would take me to Hal & Mal’s after school for a bite to eat and to see my new friend, Cotton. When I began high school, and music and boys came into my life, I saw some of my first concerts at Hal & Mal’s. Every time I came in, no matter who served me, we knew each other’s names, and I would always get the recurring question: “How’s your mama?” When I turned 21, I got my first “real” drink at Hal & Mal’s, and now every time I go in, it’s better than the last. Cotton Baronich is now a bartender at the Roberts Walthall Hotel on West Capitol Street.

E-mail letters to, fax to 601-510-9019 or mail to P.O. Box 5067, Jackson, Miss., 39296. Include daytime phone number. Letters may be edited for length and clarity.


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Kids Need Sports

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t’s not news that childhood obesity is a major problem in America. The problem is particularly bad in Mississippi. As recently as last June, our state led the nation in obese children, according to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in “F as in Fat: How Obesity Threatens America’s Future 2010,� One of the problems I have with this report, however, is its use of body mass index, or BMI, as the end-all and be-all of measuring physical fitness. BMI does not distinguish between body fat and muscle, nor does it account for bone density, muscle or where fat is located on the body. To me, that makes using BMI a poor statistic to determine obesity rates. Case in point: Major League Baseball players are getting fatter, reported Eric Ding of the Harvard School of Public Health in March. Researchers used the players’ BMI to determine if the players were overweight. In the steroids era, however, athletes in all sports have been getting bigger, stronger and faster for years. In this case, using BMI to determine obesity is irresponsible. I am not saying that Mississippi adults and children don’t have a problem with obesity, but I question the near-exclusive use of BMI to figure obesity rates. Hydrostatic (underwater) weighing is the most accurate way to calculate body fat (if you can find a hydrostatic weighing tank, which can be a problem). The next best way is by using a skin-fold caliper. This leads me back to childhood obesity and how to fight it. Many have pointed out that schools need to do more to help combat obesity in children. While schools should help in this fight, good physical fitness habits need to begin long before children start school. It is hard to get kids fit if they do not learn and reinforce good habits at home. Parents can start their children on the road to good physical health by having them go outside and play, for example. When my wife and I are out on the weekends, I am amazed that we do not see kids playing outside very often. The same thing goes for eating habits. It is all well and good to demand better school lunches, but parents have to enforce healthy eating in day care and at home, too. Finally, kids need to learn good sleep habits. Mississippi has done a number of things to promote healthy children while at school. One such measure is the 2007 Mississippi Healthy Students Act. The law mandates minimum requirements for healthy lifestyles and physical education in public schools, in-

cluding: • For kindergarten through eighth grade, 150 minutes per week of physical education and 45 minutes per week of health education. • For grades nine through 12, one semester of physical education or physical activity for graduation. • School wellness plans to promote increased physical activity, healthy eating habits, and abstinence from tobacco and illegal drugs. • A physical activity coordinator at the State Department of Education. • Directs the State Board of Education to adopt regulations that address healthy food and beverage choices, healthy food preparation, marketing of healthy food choices and methods to increase participation in the Child Nutrition School Breakfast and Lunch Programs, among other items. With schools facing more budget cuts, they must also find and use innovative ways to keep physical education on the curricula. Sacrificing PE doesn’t mean kids will do better in math and English; in fact just the opposite is true. Kids who are physically active and fit tend to perform better academically. Major sports leagues across the country have programs to help schools fund physical education. The NFL’s “Keep Gym in Schoolâ€? program gives grants to schools and recognizes gym teachers for their performance. The league also challenges kids to do 60 minutes of physical activity every day through its “Play 60â€? program. Also getting into the act to inspire kids to become active is the NBA and Major League Baseball. I am sure one reason behind their fitness campaigns is that healthy and active kids will provide those organizations a better work force, but even 1980s pro wrestler Rowdy Roddy Piper is working to end childhood obesity. By far the biggest star has been first lady Michelle Obama, who made physical fitness and fighting childhood obesity her crusade during her husband’s first term. Getting kids fit starts at home, but schools have to pick up where parents leave off. And even in this lousy economic climate, we can find ways to fund physical education. Our country’s future depends on it. A self-described “sports junkie,â€? Bryan Flynn is a lifelong Mississippi native who resides in Richland. When not working for the JFP, he writes a national blog, He lives with his wife and their four cats.

Getting kids fit starts at home, but schools have to pick up where parents leave off.

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See a play recently and think â&#x20AC;&#x153;No one else should waste their money on thisâ&#x20AC;?? Perhaps an exhibit that broadened your world perspective, and now you want everyone to see it? Got tips about getting rest after the holidays?

You need to be writing for Diversions, the JFPâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s arts and entertainment section. E-mail to find out more.

Editor in Chief Donna Ladd Publisher Todd Stauffer




very year, the JFP staff revisits the big newsmakers of the year to recap the “most intriguing” Jacksonians to make the news. Some are heroes; others are, let’s face it, scoundrels, but they all made us take notice in 2010.



Most Intriguing Haley Barbour

Haley Barbour

Gov. Haley Barbour apparently has been toying with the idea of running for president in 2012 since long before the 2008 elections. He hasn’t said yes, yet, but he ain’t saying no. Barbour, involved in politics since his days at Ole Miss in the mid-1960s, presents himself as just a “fat redneck,” in his own words, advancing the disingenuous good ol’ boy meme of George W. Bush. Few things are further from the truth. Born and reared in Yazoo City in a privileged family of lawyers, Barbour cut his political eyeteeth under the tutelage of Richard Nixon’s 1968 campaign and Republican icons like Lee Atwater (see: Southern Strategy). He has been, in fact, credited as a co-author of the cynical race-baiting strategy of getting whites to vote for Republicans (for which the GOP recently officially apologized to the NAACP). The governor has attempted to rewrite the story of his formative years, with the dubious claim of forging the “not so bad” Civil Rights Era, and defending the segregationist Citizens Council, just as he con-

tinues to frame his preference for Big Business and the wealthy as things good for all Mississippians. The problem with the latter is that the state had some of the nation’s highest rates of poverty, illiteracy, obesity and ill health when he entered the governor’s mansion in 2003, and he hasn’t moved those needles one iota. We do have an expanded port on the Coast, however, and the promise of a new auto plant. Mr. Barbour is adept in crafting and pushing an agenda, talking in conservative bumper stickers and demonizing lib’rels, especially the press, if they criticize him. He plays it like a chess master, always looking three steps ahead of his opponents. It’s a skill honed from decades of being a big player in big-time Washington, D.C., politics. Whether the country will have the tolerance for his divisive brand of politics and his insider status long enough for him to make a run for the highest office is questionable. Meantime, Barbour sure is spending a lot of time in Iowa and New Hampshire. —Ronni Mott

Intriguing Runners-Up NATALIE A. COLLIER

December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011


Stan Buckley


This year has been a whirlwind one for 28-year-old Rev. CJ Rhodes, the pastor at Mt. Helm Baptist Church. After moving back home to Mississippi upon completing his master’s in divinity at Duke University, he eventually settled in as the youngest pastor and leader of the oldest black church in the city. Rhodes isn’t shy about his intentions for the church to be a vanguard in social change. That may be one of the reasons he and First Baptist Church of Jackson’s senior pastor Dr. Stan Buckley get along so well. Buckley, also the youngest cleric at his church, has spent his tenure managing his congregation, being involved in downtown redevelopment, and ruffling a few feathers every now and then. While they don’t agree about everything, the duo is destined to help create a better Jackson. —Natalie A. Collier

CJ Rhodes



CJ Rhodes & Stan Buckley

Curnis Upkins III The cyber world knows a lot more about west Jackson thanks to Curnis Upkins III. The website,, he started as a challenge by his supervisor at the Jackson State University Center for University-Based Development, has more followers than a little bit. Upkins, a regular at the Friday Forums at Koinonia Coffee House on the city’s west side, is committed to de-stigmatize that side of town. West Jackson thanks him for it, too. With the WESToration Project and heavyweights like Dr. Bill Cooley championing the cause, west siders will prove Upkins right. —Natalie A. Collier

Curnis Upkins III

Jill Conner Browne

Jill Conner Browne Last year saw an end to the long-standing relationship between Mal’s St. Paddy’s Parade and the Sweet Potato Queens, the devotees of author Jill Conner Browne’s book series who have traditionally marched in the parade. Browne announced March 21 that the Queens’ annual gathering, which raises money for Blair E. Batson Children’s Hospital, would split from the parade. Browne first announced that the Queens would parade in Ridgeland, but in June she unveiled new plans for a gathering in Fondren to coincide with Sal & Mookie’s Street Festival the weekend after the St. Paddy’s event downtown. —Ward Schaefer

David Watkins

Quick. Think of a new development in Jackson. Now, think of a person connected to its success. Odds are, David Watkins comes to mind. As the visionary behind renovations of iconic Jackson landmarks like the King Edward Hotel and the Standard Life Building, the city celebrates Watkins’ tireless advocacy of Jackson’s renaissance. Look for his stamp on upcoming projects like the Farish Street entertainment district, Project Retro Metro as his company revitalizes the near-bankrupt Metrocenter Mall, and even a proposed Riverwalk project on downtown’s Town Creek. Not all of Watkins’ ideas are met with overwhelming enthusiasm. His recently unveiled plans for Whitney Place in Fondren, slated to fill what is mostly an empty eight-acre lot just off State Street, has met with resistance from devotees of the 1930s-era shopping strip that fronts the lot, who are forming a group to protest. —Ronni Mott


Gwendolyn Magee In December, the Mississippi Museum of Art selected textile artist Gwendolyn Magee as a community representative to speak at the Institute of Museum and Library Services award ceremony in Washington, D.C. The IMLS selected the museum, among several other facilities in the country, to receive a National Medal—the nation’s highest honor for outstanding museums and libraries. Magee, who has exhibited her work at the Jackson museum and museums from coast-to-coast, spoke about the museum’s impact on the community and Mississippi arts scene. In addition to being an art advocate, Magee tells stories about her heritage through abstract and figurative quilt pieces. She is currently working on a quilted series to illustrate slavery and a series on Hurricane Katrina titled “Katrina Narratives: Caught Between a Rock and a Hard Place,” which she hopes to showcase next spring. —Lacey McLaughin

Gwendolyn Magee

Ed Peters Just when you thought former Hinds County District Attorney Ed Peters had disappeared from the scene—finally—here comes a scathing expose of the Richard “Dickie” Scruggs scandal that shows just how integral he has long been in what author, journalist and University of Mississippi professor Curtis Wilkie calls the “Eastland cabal,” a shadowy group of powerful men who have held sway over politics in the state for years. At the very least, reading “The Fall of the House of Zeus” (Crown Publishers, 2010, $25.99) shows just how lucky Peters probably should feel that he is not behind bars, too—and reveals an underbelly of Mississippi that boggles the mind. Read it. — Donna Ladd


Mortgage lender Bo Smith has carved out a niche for himself as a professional booster for responsible homeownership in Jackson. Smith’s company, Cornerstone Home Lending Inc., has heavily marketed the Federal Housing Administration’s 203(k) home loan program. The program offers lower interest rates to people buying houses in need of some repair or improvements. A fixture at Koinonia Coffee House’s Friday Forum, Smith teamed up with Jackson State University’s Center for University-Based Development to promote the program in west Jackson, where older but still high-quality houses are ripe for renovation. Smith recognizes that homeowners increasingly want to live closer to work, in the right size house for their lifestyle, and he has seized on housing in Jackson as an emerging market. —Ward Schaefer

4949 Old Canton Road | 601-956-5108 NATHAN S. M C HARDY & LESLEY M C HARDY OWNERS & SOMMELIERS

Young restaurateur Craig Noone burst onto the local scene in early 2010 as everyone started talking about his planned restaurant, Parlor Market, which opened on West Capitol Street in the fall. Due to Noone and his friends’ social-media prowess, and his willingness to share the spotlight with other local restaurants and chefs, the hype about his restaurant was off the charts before it opened. The restaurant then lived up to the buzz, raising the standard for great food in the city. —Donna Ladd

Josh Hailey

It’s hard to know whether Josh Hailey always goes to where the fun is or if he just brings the party with him in his lithe little frame. Jackson’s indomitable sprite of the arts scene, Hailey’s oversized spirit radiates from him like sunshine, punching out in some of the most interesting hair and couture imaginable, along with hugs and kisses for everyone, and a rapid-fire stream-ofJosh Hailey consciousness chatter punctuated liberally with shouts of “Joos!” Hailey is also one of Jackson’s freest, most unconventional artists, unafraid to try any media or technology in furtherance of his art. Add to that his forays into music, events, teaching and his tireless promotion of Jackson as “the” place to be, and you have a man who has single-handedly crafted himself into a city icon. This month, Hailey is making his way to the left coast for greener pastures. He’ll be back, he says. We hope so. We’ll miss him. —Ronni Mott

Lonnie Edwards

Lonnie Edwards Jackson Public Schools Superintendent Lonnie Edwards confounded many with an Aug. 17 press conference addressing controversial book purchases in his former school district. Edwards was ostensibly denying any influence or wrongdoing in bulk purchases of his 2002 book “A Teacher’s Touch: Reaching Beyond Boundaries,” by the DeKalb County, Ga., school system, where he worked from 1971 to 2004. Instead of directly addressing questions about the book purchases, Edwards first showed reporters and JPS staff a 10minute clip of his 1996 appearance of Sally Jessy Raphael’s talk show “Sally.” The show, like Edwards’ book, focused on his relationship with a disabled student. After elaborating on the story for nearly 45 minutes, flanked by blown-up posters of positive press clippings, Edwards took questions but still dodged direct answers. Edwards will find more attention on him in 2011 as the board weighs whether to renew his contract. —Ward Schaefer


Craig Noone

Craig Noone



Bo Smith



David Watkins

JACKSONIANS, see page 16



Mary Hawkins Butler

Madison Mayor Mary Hawkins Butler is revered and even feared by many of her constituents, but her efforts this year to make Madison an exclusive city struck a cord with many Jacksonians. In September, Hawkins Butler canceled her city’s annual Freedom Fest, citing unexpected budget expendiMary Hawkins Butler tures and that too many people had come from outside the city to attend the event in prior years. Hawkins Butler referenced Franklin, Tenn., as a model city for a residents-only festival next year, but Franklin officials said they had never heard of such a practice. Expect Hawkins Butler to make more headlines in 2011, if she carries through with a rumored run for state auditor in next year’s elections. —Lacey McLaughlin

Jackson musician Taylor Hildebrand took the city’s music scene to a new level this year with the formation of his band Horse Trailer and release of his EP “Nena.” Over the summer, Hildebrand held the EP’s release at Jackson’s War Memorial Building, providing a symbolic back drop to an album inspired by letters his grandmother wrote to his grandfather during World War II. The band is composed of local musicians Dave Hutchinson, Johnny Bertram, Jamie Weems, Tommy Bryan Ledford and Valley Gordon. Perhaps Hildebrand’s most notable accomplishment is his ability to bring musicians together and strengthen Jackson’s music scene. And he’s a nice guy. —Lacey McLaughlin


Taylor Hildebrand

Taylor Hildebrand


Ronald Mason

Ronald Mason knows how to make a big exit. In January, the then-president of Jackson State University distributed a proposal to merge Mississippi’s two other historically black state universities, Alcorn State and Mississippi Valley State, Ronald Mason into JSU to make a single school, renamed “Jacobs State University.” The plan followed calls by Gov. Haley Barbour and some legislators to consolidate the state’s HBCUs, and met with widespread derision. Three months later, on April 30, he announced his resignation from JSU to become president of Louisiana’s Southern University and A&M College System. The new position offered relief from the public scrutiny he endured at JSU, he told reporters May 5. —Ward Schaefer

December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011



Ray Mabus

Rebecca Coleman Jackson Police Chief Rebecca Coleman will always be one of the first people to tell you that she depends on the hard work of subordinates. The chief came on the scene soon after the election of Jackson Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr., who stole her from Jackson State University where she was chief of JSU’s Department of Public Safety. Coleman has presided over a relatively static report of major crime in the city, with auto burglary, business burglary, carjacking and homicide virtually identical to what it was last year. The city, for example, suffered 35 homicides by November 2009 and logged 35 this year as well. Jackson suffered 61 more business burglaries this year than last year, while rape dropped 20 percent from 2009. Coleman Rebecca Coleman does not kick her team over disappointing numbers any more than she takes credit for positive weekly numbers. Her crowning achievement, however, appears to be her ability not to turn the local media into either a blood-craving enemy or some kind of lip-kissing friend-girl. This is a big difference from the last few chiefs, who left the city under bitter circumstances, regardless of whether crime actually dropped during their regimes. —Adam Lynch



Former Gov. Ray Mabus has kept plenty busy since leaving his post here in the state as its commander in chief. He is now serving as the 75th United States Secretary of the Navy. President Obama asked Mabus to prepare a longterm recovery plan for the clean up and recovery of the disastrous oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The plan, “America’s Gulf Coast: A Long-Term Recovery Plan after the Deepwater Horizon Oil spill,” received wide support from leaders on either side of the aisle. — Natalie A. Collier





Ray Mabus

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Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance Community Organizer Ulises Hernandez is the embodiment of grassroots work. He travels across the central portion of the state, from Meridian to Vicksburg, organizing and rallying the state’s slowly emerging Latino population. It is a population that Hernandez describes as Ulises Hernandez loosely connected, fearful and—above all—vulnerable. Hernandez, whose mother is working to get her own visa extended, is a native-born American who, along with his younger brother, gets to see firsthand how accepting Mississippi’s white population is of immigrants. He goes door to door in places like Morton and Forest—places with a high immigrant population—thrusting himself into the lives of complete strangers while promising organization, strength and a stable future. He comes back with tales of aggressive police checkpoints along immigrant work routes, police targeting of Latino-looking drivers and brutal robberies of whole immigrant families (who unfortunately tend to keep their cash in the home rather than putting it in the bank.) Hernandez has hard work ahead of him. —Adam Lynch

As Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant gears up for a run for the governor’s mansion, he is working hard to attract the hard-right vote—from speaking to tea-party rallies to calling for hardcore anti-immigrant laws. For example, he supports new legislation this session that will force state law enforcement agencies to target Latino-looking drivers for police stops or risk suit by state citizens. Similar legislaPhil Bryant tion from Arizona is already under attack by the federal government. Bryant rallies powerful, aging, white voters who see the clock ticking on their demographic majority in Mississippi, with piecemeal, incomplete reports painting Latino workers as a drain upon state resources. Above all, Bryant represents a segment of the state population that Census reports suggest is winding down in Mississippi—a voter base due to be supplanted by African American and Latino voters within the next few decades. In fact, Mississippi, with its proportionately high black population, will likely be one of the first southern states to lose whites as its voting majority. But don’t worry—Bryant will still be a hit at the senior-citizens soup bar in 2040. —Adam Lynch

Jamie and Gladys Scott Sisters Jamie and Gladys Scott became the focal point this year for outrage about Mississippi’s criminal-justice system. The Scott sisters are serving double life sentences at the Central Mississippi Correctional Facility in Rankin County for an armed robbery that allegedly netted between $11 and $200. Jamie and Gladys Scott Advocates for the sisters’ release have maintained their innocence and the inherent injustice of their sentences. The sisters’ alleged co-conspirators all served reduced sentences of less than three years. Over the past five years, support for the Scott sisters’ release has grown from a solo effort by their mother, Evelyn Rasco, into a widespread movement. And in 2010, the movement went mainstream, with the NAACP and other national advocacy groups chiming in, and coverage from The New York Times and USA Today. Gov. Haley Barbour is currently weighing a pardon petition submitted on their behalf, but time is running out for Jamie, who suffers from total kidney failure. —Ward Schaeffer



abalu Tacos and Tapas, a fun, hip, funky taco and tapas restaurant that perfectly fits the eclecticism of the Fondren area, offers a unique, culinary trend to Jacksonians: Spanish tapas with the simplicity of ethnic gourmet “street food” using small portions and the freshest Babalu Tacos & Tapas in Fondren ingredients. Patrons reminisce and wax nostalgic as they eat, while also getting to watch the chefs at work in the display kitchen at Babalu, located at 622 Duling Avenue in the former Duling School. Owners Bill Latham and Al Roberts have been business partners for 28 years and had the idea for Babalu from the menu down to the industrial retro look and stylish atmosphere earlier this year. Chef David Ferris’s extensive culinary experience helped put the finishing touches on the menu items with his calling, the passion, and the hunger. His excitement has led to the creation of bold, intense, flavorful food that makes Babalu’s clientele happy and heartened. “Every item on the menu, down to the individual taco shell, is made fresh daily,” says Chef Ferris. “Every day, corn tortillas are hand-pressed from maseca, or corn flour, before the lunch crowd arrives and again in the early afternoon before the dinner crowd arrives. The same technique applies for the tortilla dough used to make empanadas.” According to Latham and Roberts, the guacamole prepared tableside has been a hit. A Babalu staff member will prepare the guacamole tableside by mixing fresh ingredients of red onion, cilantro, and sun-dried tomato, literally next to your table. It’s an exclusive experience you will only find there. The small tapas portions allow culinary discovery and sharing at the table for patrons. Customers can order something different and share with one another at the table. Unique, eclectic menu items—Mexican Street Corn, Braised Beef Short Rib, or Carne La Vaca (rosemary roasted flat iron steak, pico de gallo, salsa roja, and cojita cheese)—offer a dining experience like no other in Jackson. According to Chef Ferris, “The flavorful taste and high quality meats, like the tuna from Hawaii flown in within 24 hours or the Prince Edward scallops you will taste in the ceviche, all are the best around.” The bar carries the finest tequila, and all drinks, like the food, are prepared from scratch using the best and freshest ingredients. If you order the Babarita, Babalu’s margarita, it will be prepared with freshly squeezed limes right before your very eyes. The Pepe O’Malley—mixture of Hendrix gin, a fresh cucumber slice, fresh mint, and freshly squeezed lemon juice—is another patron favorite. And there’s wine, a combination of domestic and Spanish. Another attractive quality, too: They are good stewards of the earth. All recyclable products are recycled, such as the aluminum cans. Experience hip, upscale dining at Babalu, open Sunday–Thursday, 11am - 10pm; Friday & Saturday, 11am - 11pm Find them on Facebook or to view their menu, or call 601-366-5757.

Ulises Hernandez

Phil Bryant



Itawamba County Agricultural High School senior Constance McMillen made national headlines last spring when school district officials canceled the school’s prom because McMillen wanted to bring her girlfriend and wear a tuxedo. With pressure from the media and the ACLU, school-district officials conceded to a parent-sponsored private prom, but the ACLU filed a lawsuit on behalf of McMillen, 18, saying the teen suffered “humiliation and harassment” after parConstance McMillen ents, students and school officials executed a plan to put on a “decoy” prom for her while the rest of her classmates were at a private prom 30 miles away. As a result of the suit, McMillen received $35,000 from the district for damages plus court costs, and the district adopted an anti-discriminatory policy on sexual preference or gender identity. The teenager finished her senior year at Murrah High School in Jackson and since then, ABC Family announced that the television station was is in the production stages of a made-forTV movie about McMillen. Glamour magazine named her one of their Women of the Year in its November issue. —Lacey McLaughlin


Constance McMillen



here’s plenty of reason for confidence as conference play begins in college basketball, especially for fans of Mississippi State, Jackson State and Southern Miss. But there are also lots of questions. At MSU, can Renardo Sidney get on—and stay on—the court long enough to help the Bulldogs reach the NCAA Tournament again? Can JSU avoid its seemingly annual SWAC Tournament letdown?

by Doctor S Can USM, which returns five starters, challenge C-USA big boys Memphis and Central Florida? After a string of player departures, does Ole Miss have enough bullets left to compete in the SEC West? It’s time again for Doctor S to make his patented roundball SWAGs (sophisticated wild-ass guesses):


Coach: Rick Stansbury (12 seasons, 255-140) 2009-10: 24-12 (9-7 SEC), tied for SEC West title, lost in SEC Tournament final, lost in second round of NIT Arena: Humphrey Coliseum, Starkville Radio: 105.9 FM Renardo Sidney has been the best offensive player at Mississippi State since he arrived in Starkville. But he wasn’t been able to play because the NCAA suspended him for one season and nine games for receiving improper benefits. Too bad he doesn’t play quarterback for Auburn. In that case, he would have been eligible immediately. Sidney finally got on the court and immediately ran into trouble again. He was suspended from MSU’s first game in a Hawaii tournament for unspecified violations of team rules. He played well in the second game. But after that game, he got into a fight with his roommate, Elgin Bailey, in the stands while watching both games. Both players are now suspended indefinitely. Diva Sidney obviously has a lot of growing up to do. It’s a pity because he has been impressive when he’s played, in spite of being overweight and out of shape. Point guard Dee Bost also had to sit out after he withdrew from the NBA draft after the deadline. He can’t play in a regular-season game until Jan. 8, when the Bulldogs open SEC play.

Ravern Johnson

December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011


Outlook: We won’t really know what MSU has until the SEC season begins. Sidney needs to grow up and get in shape if he’s to become the star everyone believes he can be. The Bulldogs have the scoring punch and defense to win another SEC West title and return to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in two years.


Coach: Tevester Anderson (eight seasons, 114-113) 2009-10: 19-13 (17-1 SWAC), lost in first round of SWAC Tournament, lost in first round of NIT Arena: Athletics and Assembly Center, Jackson Radio: 620 AM

Rod Melvin

Jackson State is right where it was at this time last season. The Tigers are favored to win the SWAC again. Last season, JSU romped to the league’s regular-season title again. And disaster struck in the SWAC Tournament again when the Tigers were knocked out in the first round. JSU got a consolation prize of sorts when they earned a trip to the NIT. JSU suffered its biggest loss last year early in the season when all-star forward Grant Maxey was lost for the season after just two games because of an ankle injury. Maxey is back, thanks to a medical redshirt. He has slowly been working his way back into shape. Last year’s two top players, SWAC Newcomer of the Year Tyrone Hanson (11.4 points per game and 4.8 rebounds per game) and De’Suan Dixon (10.6 ppg, 6.7 rpg) are back. Coach Tevester Anderson is enthusiastic about his squad. “I really like this team,” Anderson said before the season. “This group has the potential to be the best team I have had since coming to Jackson State. Outlook: The Tigers have reloaded for another shot at the SWAC title. They should be able to do that. But they don’t have a shot of playing in the NCAA Tournament unless they can reverse their luck in the league tourney. more SPORTS, see page 20

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SPORTS, from page 18

FRIDAY, DEC. 31 Men’s college basketball, Alcorn State at Ole Miss (7 p.m., Oxford, Fox Sports South, 97.3 FM): The Braves and Rebels meet in an intrastate throwdown. SATURDAY, JAN. 1 College football, Gator Bowl, Mississippi State vs. Michigan (12:30 p.m., Jacksonville, Fla., ESPN2, 105.9 FM): The Bulldogs must find a way to slow down the Wolverines. Can the Wolverines contain the quicker Bulldogs? … Rose Bowl, TCU vs. Wisconsin (4 p.m., ESPN): The Horned Frogs have crashed the BCS party for the second straight year. Can they knock off the Badgers? SUNDAY, JAN. 2 NFL football, Tampa Bay at New Orleans (noon, Ch. 40, 620 AM): The Saints still have a shot at the NFC South title, while the Bucs have to win to make the playoffs. … Men’s college basketball, Southeastern Louisiana at Ole Miss (6 p.m., Oxford, CSS, 97.3 FM): The Rebels play the Lions in a rare Sunday home game.

Larry Eustachy starts his seventh season as Southern Miss coach as the dean of C-USA coaches. Does that mean USM officials are really patient or do they (rightly) figure they can’t do any better than Eustachy? Eustachy also has all five starters back for the first time in his stay in Hattiesburg. Leading scorer Gary Flowers has been even better this season, averaging 21.7 points and 6.4 rebounds per game. He scored a career-high 31 points against Alcorn State Dec. 1. He scored 28 in the Eagles’ shocking 80-78 victory at California. “I’ve never been more proud of any player I’ve ever had,” Eustachy said of Flowers after the Cal game. “This is his team and wants to be the guy. But what comes with that is a lot of responsibility, and he’s earned it.” Other top returnees include Angelo Johnson, Lanier alum R.L. Horton and Sai’Quon Stone, who made the C-USA AllDefensive Team.

Coach: Andy Kennedy (four seasons, 85-50) 2009-10: 24-11 (9-7 SEC), tied for SEC West title, lost in first round of SEC Tournament, lost in NIT semifinals Arena: Tad Smith Coliseum, Oxford Radio: 97.3 FM

MONDAY, JAN. 3 College football, Orange Bowl, Stanford vs. Virginia Tech (7:30 p.m., ESPN): The Cardinal and Hokies present an intriguing matchup of two of the nation’s best.

December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011

TUESDAY, JAN. 4 College football, Sugar Bowl, Ohio State vs. Arkansas (7:30 p.m., ESPN): Four Buckeyes got caught breaking the rules. Since they don’t play for an SEC school, the NCAA says, “Play on.”


WEDNESDAY, JAN. 5 Men’s college basketball, Ole Miss at SMU (7 p.m., Dallas, 97.3 FM): The Rebels aim to corral the Ponies in their final game before SEC play begins. The Slate is compiled by Doctor S, who hopes this magnetic wristband will cure the dreaded deadline doom. You’re always on time at JFP Sports on www.

R.L. Horton

Outlook: The Golden Eagles are off to a hot start this season. The win over Cal could loom large for USM’s postseason hopes. Yes, the Eagles will contend for the C-USA title this year. And they’re a good bet to return to postseason.


THURSDAY, DEC. 30 Men’s college basketball, Millsaps New Year’s Classic, Belhaven vs. Mississippi College (5 p.m.) and Rust at Millsaps (7 p.m.): The area’s denominational schools meet in a church holiday classic.

Coach: Larry Eustachy (seventh season at USM, 95-90; 19 seasons overall, 355-239) 2009-10: 20-14 (8-8 C-USA), lost in C-USA Tournament semifinals, lost in first round of Tournament. Arena: Reed Green Coliseum, Hattiesburg Radio: 1590 AM


Doctor S sez: Here’s hoping 2011 will bring as many great games and performances as 2010 did.

Chris Warren

It’s year five of the Andy Kennedy era at Ole Miss. By Rebel standards, Kennedy has been very successful. He’s won 85 games, two SEC West titles and taken the Rebels to the NIT Final Four twice. By comparison, Ole Miss was 55-63 in the four seasons before Kennedy arrived. But there’s still one glaring omission: Kennedy has yet to take the Rebels to the NCAA Tournament. Last spring didn’t help the Rebels’ hopes. Terrico White left early for the NBA draft, Murphy Holloway transferred to South Carolina and Eniel Polynice went to Seton Hall. The only returning starter is senior point guard Chris Warren, who’s averaging 18.7 points per game. Zach Graham, who has been a part-time starter the last two seasons, is averaging 13.6 points. Reginald Buckner, who had a school-record 64 blocks last season, already has 33 this year. “We’re still a work in progress,” Kennedy told The Clarion-Ledger earlier this month. “Two steps forward and one step back. We’re getting solid play from a number of guys.” Outlook: Ole Miss has lost too much to finish any higher than third in the SEC West. The Rebels will have to play at least another year for an NCAA berth.

more SPORTS, see page 22


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an this year’s Mississippi State Bulldogs capture lightning in a bottle like the 1995-96 team? Before the start of the 2010 men’s basketball season, MSU emerged as the trendy choice to win the SEC West division. Expectations are high in Starkville this season, and thoughts of a deep run in the NCAA Basketball Tournament surround the team. Last season the Bulldogs tied for first in the SEC West Division. Snubbed by the NCAA Tournament, they played in the 2010 National Invitation Tournament where they advanced to the second round before North Carolina defeated them. Like this year, the ’95-’96 team entered the season highly regarded and ranked ninth in the country. The previous year’s team had reached the Sweet Sixteen before losing to eventual champion UCLA. The preseason had its share of controversy and hype. Before playing for MSU in the ’90s, small forward Dontae’ Jones underwent scrutiny from the NCAA after he passed 36 course hours over the summer to become eligible for MSU. Jones completed 21 hours at Northeast Junior College and 15 hours in correspondence courses from Southern Mississippi. The NCAA has since enacted a rule that places limitations on the number of summer-school hours a student-athlete can use for eligibility purposes—coaches know it as the “Dontae’ Jones rule.” With Jones eligible to play, MSU coach Richard Williams was able to place a talented trio of players on the floor. Joining Jones was shooting guard Daryl Wilson, a deadeye shooter, and center Erick Dampier, a defensive force in the middle. Rounding out the starting five was strong forward Russell Walters and point guard Marcus Bullard. Coming off the bench to contribute were Bart Hyche, Whit Hughes and Tyrone Washington. MSU tore through their out-of-conference schedule going 8-1 with the lone loss coming via Arkansas Little Rock, which is nearly unexplainable. Things would get tougher for the Bulldogs entering conference play. Mississippi State would start SEC play losing four of their first seven. The heavy favorites were 3-4 in league play and plagued by turnovers. The Bulldogs would quickly right the ship with five straight victories before splitting their final four games. The team finished with a 10-6 SEC record to win the SEC West Division. MSU crushed Auburn and Georgia to reach the SEC Championship game against Kentucky. In a shocking upset, the Bulldogs

by Bryan Flynn defeated the eventual national champions, a team that featured nine future NBA players. MSU was given the fifth seed in the Southeast Region. In their opening game, the Bulldogs struggled against Virginia Commonwealth but survived. In the second round, MSU crushed Ivy League champions Princeton. What happened next would become part of Mississippi sports lore. In the Sweet Sixteen, MSU faced the Connecticut Huskies, the numberone seed in the Southeast Region, led by future NBA star and, possibly, future hall-of-famer Ray Allen. Even then, Allen had a reputation for his shooting touch and nearly flawless marksmanship. In an instant classic, UConn’s Allen and MSU’s Wilson went toe-to-toe in a shootout. Wilson hit big shots late to lead MSU to a 60-55 win and a date with Cincinnati in the regional final. The Bulldogs handled the Elite Eight Bearcats with ease, winning 73-63 to earn the school’s first and only final-four berth, where MSU’s dream season would die against Syracuse. The next season, the Bulldogs lost all five starters and came crashing back to earth. Just two years after that final four, MSU went 12-18 overall and 6-10 in the SEC in 1996-97, and 15-15 overall and 412 in the SEC in 1997-98. Williams was forced out and replaced with his assistant, Rich Stansbury. Not until the 2001-02 season did the Mississippi State Bulldogs reach the NCAA Tournament again; they have yet to make it past the first weekend since 1996. Where Are They Now? Richard Williams bounced around after leaving MSU, even coaching at Pearl High School at one point. Today Williams is an assistant coach at Arkansas State. Erick Dampier was a lottery pick by the Indiana Pacers in 1996. The man in the middle for Mississippi State played for four teams in the NBA. These days Dampier took his talents to South Beach to join LeBron James and the Miami Heat. The New York Knicks drafted Dontae’ Jones in 1996, trading him to the Boston Celtics a year later. Jones would go on to play in Europe, Mexico and the United States. Currently, Jones is playing with Mexico’s Halcones UV Xalapa. Darryl Wilson never got a shot at the NBA but he played professionally in Israel and Italy. The former MSU guard was last seen playing for the Tupelo Rock-n-Rollers. Comment at

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College Basketball PREVIEW


riters have kicked around the idea of Mississippi with just one major university for nearly two decades. When they dream of this super school, they usually dream about football. But what about college basketball? Imagine it: tournament bids; trips to the Sweet Sixteen; stops in the Elite Eight, an annual spot in the Final Four. If only—the Miami Heat of college basketball. What would a team be like filled with star players from the Magnolia State? That is where I ran into trouble. Two of the best players in the state—Dee Bost and Renardo Sidney of Mississippi State—have yet to step on the court and will not see any action until after the calendar changes. Bost, a staple on the last year’s MSU team, which nearly upset Kentucky in the SEC Championship game, ran into trouble trying to un-declare from the NBA draft. Missed deadlines and mistakes cost Bost the start to this season. Sidney, on the other hand, has been waiting for the chance to play since he got to Starkville. Concerns over his eligibility have finally cleared up, and he will start the season like Bost: having missed the first nine games. So, MSU fans, I decided to leave them off my JFP dream team and only name active players in the state. Spare me the hate mail, please. Ravern Johnson: Guard, Mississippi State Ravern Johnson and fellow Bulldog Kodi Augustus are charged with keeping MSU’s tournament hopes alive until Bost and Sidney return. Johnson, who hails from Lyon, Miss., has not disappointed, averaging 25 point per game and four rebounds. Johnson is entering his senior year. His point average has jumped from 13 last year to 25 this year for the 5-2 Bulldogs. Chris Warren: Guard, Mississippi Chris Warren has been a UM star since he stepped on campus. If Ole Miss is going to return to the post season, they will need a major ef-

pray that the ball goes in the basket. • For baristas, walk over to the basket with $10 and ask it if you can buy a shot. • For lawyers, the game is played on a court not in a courtroom, so shut your mouth and shoot the ball in the basket. You do not argue with the basket because you cannot shoot. • For doctors, just because Dr. J was one of the greatest does not mean that you have the potential to learn how to play. • For the young at heart but old in reality, sit down and be a spectator, as you might break something. • For all others, shoot the ball off your fingertips, flip your wrist, keep your elbows in, and you will probably make the shot. Naismith probably never anticipated that his game would explode to the magnitude that it has or have the impact on society that it has today. Not only is playing basketball a form of recreation, but for the extremely talented, it can be a multi-milliondollar career. The skills and techniques used in playing are more of an art form than a game: the game now consists of the crossover dribble, the dunk and even the alley oop. If you happen to run into a 6-foot-8inch black man who goes by the name of King James (aka LeBron James, or for those in Cleveland, Queen James), tell him to call me. I can use some pointers. Comment at

by Bryan Flynn fort from Warren every night. The Rebels guard is 18.3 points per game with 2.7 rebounds and 4.6 assists. Warren is a senior from Orlando, Fla., entering his senior year for the 5-2 Rebels.


#L??=B;GJ;AH? NI;MN;NGC>HCABN live music by



601.978.1839 6270 Old Canton Rd. Jackson, MS 39211




Gary Flowers: Forward, Southern Mississippi With Memphis being down recently, the door is open for another C-USA team to get into the NCAA Tournament. There is no reason that team can’t be USM. Leading the Golden Eagles to the promised land of post-season basketball is Gary Flowers. The forward from Dallas is entering his final season at USM. Flowers averages 20.7 points a game to go along with 7.2 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 2.2 blocks for the 6-1 Eagles. Jenirro Bush: Guard, Jackson State Last season, Tiger fans will remember rolling through the conference regular season. JSU used all that regular season domination just to flame out in their opening game of the conference tournament. If the Tigers want to be in the NCAA and not the NIT, it looks like Jenirro Bush has to lead the way. The junior from Starkville averages 14.9 points per game, with 3.1 rebounds and 1.2 assists for the 2-6 Tigers. Marquis Baker: Guard, Alcorn State The Braves have not performed very well during the non-conference schedule. In fact, the team is 0-8, but the conference games have yet to be played. Marquis Baker has carried his share of the load for ASU this season, averaging 17.6 points per game with 3.8 rebounds, 1.5 steals and one assist. The junior from Austin, Texas, is a first-year starter. Comment at
















uring the final game of the 20092010 NBA championship, I accompanied my Hungarian friend and her boyfriend, Attila, to a performance of the International Ballet Competition. I said to Attila, “You are one of the few men here tonight; you did not want to stay home and watch the NBA championship?” With his thick Hungarian accent, Attila replied, “No, I do not like football.” If, like Attila, you cannot distinguish basketball from football, then read no further, there is no hope for you. All others: If you can shoot, you can play. First, a little history: Dr. James Naismith,

a physical-education teacher, invented basketball in 1891 as an interesting indoor game to occupy students during the winter. A year later, the teachers of Springfield, Mass., played their students in the first official basketball game. Two hundred people, more than the amount one can expect at a Millsaps home game, attended the historic event. The following year, on March 22, 1893, the game truly became a sport when Smith College played the first women’s game in Northampton, Mass. The first professional basketball league formed in 1898 with six teams, much like the American Southwest Conference today. By 1905, basketball was played throughout the United States. The NBA, created June 6, 1946, solidified America’s love of basketball. The WNBA finally gave women players a stage in June 1997. Today, more than 450 million people worldwide, from the grass-roots level to the WNBA, play basketball. Playing basketball is not hard to do: If you have a basket and a ball, and you can shoot the ball into the basket, then you can play. This can be done in a variety of ways: • For the uncoordinated or unathletic, hand the ball to your athletic friend and let him or her put the ball in the basket for you. • For guys and gals with manicures, hold the ball in the palm of your hand, throw the ball toward the basket, bow your head and



by Diandra Hosey


a tasty


on a Southern tradition


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December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011

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All I Want for Christmas …

Brandon native Zach Lovett hones his musical skills with the dedication of any high-achieving athlete.


ome children play football, and some run track, but 18-year-old Zach Lovett plays a different sport: “My legs were always weak. They still are. The guitar became my sport,” he says. Born with hyperextension in both of his legs, Lovett relied on his fingers to do the running as he would pick and slap his guitar strings every day after school. His mother nicknamed him Fingers Lovett because he was constantly meddling with things as a child. “It’s kind of taken on a new meaning, since I play music,” Lovett says. “I guess the guitar kept my hands busy.”

by Lance Lomax

Lovett’s music has been more than just playing an instrument. It has been his sport and his medication. But more important than either of these things, his music is an outlet—a way for him to connect with people and share experiences and emotion. That’s what Lovett means when he says “blues.” “Blues isn’t a sound to me,” he says. “It’s what you’re singing about.” The young man’s father, Mike, reared him listening to artists like Bob Dylan, John Prine and Neil Young. Like their songs, his are about the words. “I’ll listen to Lady Gaga,” he says, “but that’s not what I’m about.” He believes that a lot of music has lost meaning in popular culture. “When I write a song, I’m finding things about myself. When you hear it, I want you to discover things about yourself,” the bluesman says. He is searching for a feeling and a crowd to connect with. He isn’t searching for fame and fortune. In fact, he says he hates that so many musicians today seem to be chasing the next dollar. “I’m glad people are starting to listen,” he says. “I think I have something to say.” Lovett likes to cover songs by musicians like Josh Ritter and Conor Oberst. He refers to Oberst as the Bob Dylan of his generation. But when he wants to make a connection with his listening audience, the singing guitarist prefers to play original

music. His favorite song, “Planted,” does just that, it seems. “People make situations warm and cozy,” he says. “In that song, there’s just a want for someone to come along and make you whole. That’s what that song is. That’s my song. I put my whole soul into that song. There’s emotion there. I’ve never had a song touch me every time I sing it until this one. ‘Planted’ does it every time. It hits me deep.” In late January, Lovett will begin recording his first album, along with his friend Clayton Gregory of Cleveland, Miss., who will assist with string arrangements and keyboards. The album, the first-time recording artist says, will have a “funky southern sound.” The maturing musician has played at Hal & Mal’s for Mississippi HeARTS against AIDS for the last couple of years along with artists like Scott Albert Johnson. “It’s a really nice event. If you’re a fan of the arts, that’s something to partake in,” Lovett says. He also plays at a couple of local bars around Delta State when he’s at school, and he always makes his Tuesday open-mic appearance at Fenian’s, when he gets a chance. Aside from playing guitar, Lovett has taught himself to play the harmonica and mandolin. His newest ambition is to play the banjo. He admits that bluegrass has a heavy influence on his music. “It takes real talent to play bluegrass,” he says. “Bluegrass is the metal of country music. … All I want for Christmas is a banjo and a record player.” (And he got them!)

Get Your Freak On 2009 with their first song and music video “Give it Away” (track 12), a pop/electro Christmas tune that combines underlying tracks from Wham’s “Last Christmas” and a freestyle rap by Hailey. The band’s previous members, Daniel Guaqueta and Amanda Rainey, both make an appearance on “Give It Away.” Listen to the first three songs on the CD, and you might question the parental advisory warning on the front of the case.



n “Memphis Boys Make Music History” by James L. Dickerson (Vol. 9, Issue 15, Dec. 22-28), the first part of the first paragraph was inadvertently deleted. Here’s how the first paragraph should have read: Lincoln “Chips” Moman is one of the most successful record producers in history. A music visionary with a knack for matching songs with artists, he was the genius behind Elvis Presley’s “Suspicious Minds” and “Kentucky Rain,” Dusty Springfield’s “Son of a Preacher Man,” Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline,” Dionne Warwick’s “Lost that Lovin’ Feeling,” Petula Clark’s “People Get Ready,” Wilson Pickett’s “Midnight Mover,” Joe Tex’s “Hold On To What You Got,” Willie Nelson’s “Always on My Mind,” and the list goes on and on. Now that you’re intrigued, go to to read the rest of the story.


December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011


The album opens with “J-TRAN” and proceeds with two uplifting and fun songs. “Jump & Play” features the sugary vocals of children who sing about the sense of wonder we lose as we grow up. It’s one of those songs that you can’t help tapping your feet to, and it perfectly captures Hailey’s Peter Pan philosophy. The Hailey-penned “Love this City” is a nostalgic tribute to Jackson, focusing on his passion for the city, but noting its lack of momentum and change. As he packs up and heads for Los Angeles, perhaps it’s a danceable eulogy. The album begins its dissent into a kinky rabbit hole by the fifth track: “Freaky F*cked Up Girl.” The song is about a guy who takes a girl home for a one-night stand, only to realize a little too late that she is a bit more than he bargained for in the bedroom. It’s pretty naughty by conservative Mississippi standards but would make a great addition to a late-night dance-party mix. The entire album is well mastered, but you might blush when you hear “Keep it In (From the Back).” Pepper, who has a background in mixing from Mediatech Institute in Austin, is no amateur when it comes to layering vocals and beats together. While



f you want an upbeat and danceable peek into Josh Hailey and Tre Pepper’s mind, J-TRAN’s self-titled debut album is your best bet. Released in early December, the pop/electro CD is a fun and raunchy compilation of songs the duo wrote and produced during late-night creative binges in Hailey’s Fondren Corner studio over the course of 30 days. Hailey and Pepper formed J-TRAN in

by Lacey McLaughlin

the bonus track is reminiscent of a guys’ locker-room conversation, the album never slows down or loses energy. The CD jacket’s art is impressive. The 30-page booklet features some of Hailey’s best photographs with overlapping song lyrics. “Love this City” showcases thumbnail photos of Jackson landscapes and people, making the album feel like a scrapbook. Overall, the album captures the free and funky creative energy that only Pepper and Hailey can pull off, leaving us with an additional dose of inspiration long after the prince of Fondren is gone. “J-TRAN” is available exclusively at Sneaky Beans (2914 N. State St.) for $15.

Wednesday, December 29th


(Blues) 8-11, No Cover Thursday, December 30th


(Jazz) 8-11, No Cover

Friday, December 31st


(Blues) $15 Cover, Free Champagne Saturday, January 1st

CLOSED Wednesday, January 5th


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ALL STADIUM SEATING Listings for Friday, Dec. 31st - Thursday, Jan. 6th True Grit


Little Fockers PG13

(Gypsy Jazz) 8-11, No Cover

Black Swan


Thursday, January 6th

3-D Gullivers Travels


How Do You Know? PG13

(Jazz) 8-11, No Cover

Gullivers Travels (non 3-D) PG

Friday, January 7th

3-D Tron Legacy PG

Tangled (non 3-D) PG

Tron Legacy (non 3-D) PG

Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Pt. 1 PG13

GRADY CHAMPION (Blues) $10 Cover

Saturday, January 8th


119 S. President Street 601.352.2322

The Fighter


3-D Yogi Bear PG Yogi Bear (non 3-D)

18+ show

Chronicles Of Narnia: Voyage Of The Dawn Treader 3-D PG Chronicles Of Narnia: Voyage Of The Dawn Treader (non 3-D) PG


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adults in the Jackson metro read us in print or online.


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For more information, call 601-362-6121 x11 or write! From modest, everyday wear to bold statement pieces, jewelrymaker Cecile Bartlett crafts pieces that practically anyone would be able to wear to jazz up an outfit.


December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011

Follow Mississippi Happening on Twitter and Facebook.


very Halloween when she was a child, Cecile Bartlett would dress up in her grandmother’s enormous collection of costume jewelry and transform herself into a gypsy. Her desire to wear jewelry all the time, though, often ended up getting her in trouble. Her mother threatened to wring her neck when she came home with her pearls ruined from swimming or riding horses wearing them. Now a fine-art jeweler, Bartlett says her interest in jewelry began with that collection. As this Jackson native, now 38, grew older, she became more and more frustrated with jewelry that fell apart easily. “It was hard to find stuff that was different,” she says. “And just trying to find a good pair of hoops that were the right size that didn’t make your ears turn black or hurt was impossible.” Bartlett’s childhood memories and her desire for sturdier jewelry, combined with her loathing for shopping, eventually led her to try making jewelry herself. She first experimented with beadwork in the late ’90s but quickly became bored with it. In 2005, Bartlett took a metal-smithing class under the tutelage of Betsy Liles, owner of B. Fine Art Jewelry. The same year, Liles opened her first studio and asked Bartlett if she wanted to rent a space from her. Bartlett was flattered and worked in Liles’ studio for three years. At first, Bartlett refused to put her first name on her work. “I didn’t want anyone to know who I was. I didn’t want people to buy it just be-

cause they knew my mom or something, or they were like, ‘Awww, how sweet,’ or ‘Awww, bless her heart,’” she says, laughing. She tried putting her middle name, Legendre, on her work, but that didn’t work. “It looks like I misspelled legendary,” she says. Liles eventually convinced Bartlett to put her first name on her work, and ever since, she has tagged her jewelry with her first name, though still with complete modesty. “I love talking up other people’s things, but I don’t do a very good job with mine,” she confesses. Bartlett also reworks pieces she doesn’t love immediately, trying to make them better. “I’m definitely not an artist with a capital “A,” she says. “I’m not cool enough.” The only time Bartlett hints she has talent is when she speaks about her mother’s visits to her studio in Flora. “She tries to be sticky fingers,” Bartlett says of her mother. “I know something is good when she tries to leave with it.” But even if she won’t ever admit it, Bartlett’s work is amazing. She uses lots of natural stones in odd shapes and sizes, and puts them in unique settings in rings or earrings. She also fabricates almost everything. Fabrication, she says, is making everything yourself starting with sheets of metal and wire, instead of buying the component parts. Bartlett melts and hammers the metal (usually silver). “That way,” she says, (the stones) don’t have to be a certain dimension. It gives you a lot of freedom. You can do anything.”

And Bartlett will do anything. Her pieces range from tiny earrings that can be worn every day to large, edgy rings that make bold statements. “I do small, and then I do big. I get to be almost schizophrenic,” she says jokingly. Bartlett finds inspiration in imperfection. “Taking something that may not be seen as valuable or beautiful, and creating an environment or setting for it to show its beauty is the real accomplishment,” Bartlett explains. The artisan also takes into account wearability when making a piece. She considers everything from comfort to how a stone will rest on the finger. “I don’t ever want to make something that somebody’s going to have to worry about. I hate the idea of not being able to wear something because it’s too fragile,” she says. One of the biggest compliments Bartlett says she ever got was from a lady who told her she had thrown out all of her other earrings because Bartlett’s were so comfortable. “It’s not the most expensive thing she has in her closet. It’s not the greatest piece … but it’s that go-to thing. That was really cool,” Bartlett says. Bartlett’s jewelry is sold at B. Fine Art Jewelry and The Gallery at the Mississippi Craft Center in Ridgeland. In Jackson, find it at The Shoe Bar at Pieces and the Museum Store at the Mississippi Museum of Art. On the Coast, head to the Museum Shop at the Ohr-O’Keefe Museum in Biloxi.

BEST BETS Dec. 29, 2010-Jan. 5, 2011 by Latasha Willis Fax: 601-510-9019 Daily updates at


The Jackson Public Schools Pepsi Holiday Basketball Tournament at Jackson State University’s Williams Athletics and Assembly Center (1400 John R. Lynch St.) continues through Dec. 30. $8, $10 semifinals and finals; visit for brackets and game times. … The Wonderland of Lights celebration at Freedom Ridge Park (235 W. School St., Ridgeland) continues nightly at 6 p.m. through Dec. 31. Free; call 800-468-6078. … Snazz plays at Regency Hotel at 8:30 p.m. Visit snazzband2. … Jason Turner is at Char. ... Passenger Jones performs at Hal & Mal’s. … Ralph Miller performs at the Irish Frog. … Brian Jones performs at Fenian’s. Free. ... Doubleshotz is at Shucker’s.

FRIDAY 12/31

The following exhibits close today: the Global Tree Display at the Jackson Zoo (2918 W. Capitol St., free with paid admission; call 601-352-2580), “Reflections on Welty’s World” at the Powell Museum (129 E. Ash St., free; call 601209-4736) and the Festival of Christmas Trees display at the Arts Center of Mississippi (201 E. Pascagoula St., free; call 601-960-1557). … Scott Penman and Jesse Stribling’s “Attention to Detail” exhibit at Cups in Fondren (2757 Old Canton Road) is up through Jan. 31. Free; call 601-362-7422. … The New Year’s Eve party at Sportsman’s Lodge starts at 7 p.m. … The Make-A-Wish Foundation’s New Year’s Eve Gala at the Jackson Convention Complex is at 7:30 p.m. $150, $275 for two; call 601-966-9474. … … Shaun Patterson, Kenny Davis and Richard Davis perform at Georgia Blue. … The Colonels play at ToMara’s at 9 p.m. … Spacewolf and Friends play at Martin’s New Year’s Eve Bash at 10 p.m. … Salsa Mississippi hosts its Hot Salsa New Year’s Eve at Mezza (1896 Main St., Madison) at 10 p.m. $10; call 601-213-6355.


The nightly community Kwanzaa celebration at Medgar Evers Community Center (3159 Edwards Ave.) at 6 p.m. ends tonight. Free admission; call 601-454-5777. … Swamp Babies and Liver Mousse perform at Ole Tavern. … Norman Clark performs with the Amazin’ Lazy Boi Band at F. Jones Corner at 10 p.m. $5, $10 after midnight. … The Dylan Moss Project plays at Pop’s. … Seth Libbey and the Liberals perform at Martin’s.


The Millsaps Chamber Singers perform at Northminster Baptist Church (3955 Ridgewood Road) at 10:30 a.m. Free; call 601-974-1422. … Andy Hardwick performs at Fitzgerald’s brunch from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. … Knight Bruce performs during Sophia’s 11 a.m. brunch. … The opera film “Mozart’s ‘Cosi fan tutte’” at Russell Liver Mousse (Caitlin McNally and Cody Cox) performs at Ole Tavern Jan. 1.

Bewey Bowden’s “Adventures in Color” exhibit at the Mississippi Library Commission (3881 Eastwood Drive) closes today. Free; call 601-432-4056. … Roselyn Polk’s craft exhibit at the Mississippi Craft Center (950 Rice Road, Ridgeland) is on display through Dec. 31. Free admission; call 601-856-7546. … Lauren Kate signs copies of “Torment” at Lemuria Books (202 Banner Hall, 4465 Interstate 55 N.) at 5 p.m.; reading at 5:30 p.m. $17.99 book; call 601366-7619. … Lisa Mills performs at Underground 119. … Philip’s on the Rez has music by Bubba Wingfield. … The North Mississippi All-Stars play at Hal & Mal’s. ... Scott Albert Johnson and Bob Gates are at Burgers and Blues. ... Legacy plays at Fenian’s.


The Power APAC art exhibit at the Jackson-Evers International Airport (100 International Drive) is up through Jan. 7. Free; call 601-960-5387. … The Four Seasons at the Cedars Winter Art Exhibit at The Cedars Historic Home (4145 Old Canton Road) is on display through Jan. 7. Free; call 601981-9606. … Martin’s has open-mic. … The Central Mississippi Blues Society Jam at Hal & Mal’s is from 8-11 p.m. $5.


“Welty Snapshots: At Home and Away” at the Eudora Welty House (1119 Pinehurst Place) is on display through Jan. 17. Free; call 601-353-7762. … The Megalodon exhibit at the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science (2148 Riverside Drive) is up through Jan. 9. $3-$5, free for members and children under 3; call 601-354-2703. … Ole Tavern has open-mic. … Jackson Comedy Night at Dreamz Jxn is at 8 p.m. $7; call 601-317-0769. … McB’s has karaoke.


Exhibits on display at the Mississippi Museum of Art (280 S. Lamar St.) through Jan. 16 include “Cabbagetown: Photos by Oraien Catledge,” “River and Reverie: Paintings by Rolland Golden” and the Mississippi Watercolor Society Exhibition. $3-$5, children under 5 and museum members free; call 601-960-1515. … Enjoy Wasted Wednesday with The Supakidz at Dreamz Jxn. … Karaoke with DJ Stache is at Ole Tavern. … Swing d’ Paris performs at Underground 119. More events and details at

The Make-A-Wish Foundation’s New Year’s Eve gala will be at the Jackson Convention Complex Dec. 31 at 7:30 p.m. THE MAKE-A-WISH FOUNDATION’S


C. Davis Planetarium (201 E. Pascagoula St.) shows at 2 p.m. $16; call 601-960-2300. … Jeanette Jarmon’s art exhibit at Fitness Lady (331 Sunnybrook Road, Ridgeland) is on display through Jan. 25. Free; call 601-906-3458.



jfpevents JFP-SPONSORED EVENTS Radio JFP on WLEZ ongoing, at WLEZ 100.1 FM and Join Donna Ladd and Todd Stauffer every Thursday from noon-1 p.m., where they discuss vital issues and play local music. Listen to podcasts of all shows at Free; call 601-362-6121, ext. 17. Valentine’s Date Night Feb. 4, at circa. (2771 Old Canton Road). Artist Christy Henderson debuts her exhibit of intriguing abstracts and love-themed works. With artisan-made gifts and a scent bar, you’re sure to find a perfect Valentine’s gift for someone special - and for yourself. Free admission; e-mail Mississippi HeARTS Against AIDS Feb. 12, 6 p.m., at Hal & Mal’s (200 Commerce St.). The benefit is a huge live and silent auction of Mississippi’s best-known artists with live entertainment headlined by Scott Albert Johnson and cuisine catered by dozens of local restaurants. $35, $25 students with ID; call 601-668-6648. Mississippi Happening ongoing. The monthly broadcast is hosted by Guaqueta Productions and features a special musical guest. Download free podcasts at

HOLIDAY Festival of Christmas Trees through Dec. 31, at Arts Center of Mississippi (201 E. Pascagoula St.). See a showcase of various civic, social and religious organizations’ creatively decorated Christmas trees, which will be judged on creativity. Hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and noon5 p.m. Sunday. Free; call 601-960-1557. Wonderland of Lights Dec. 31, at Freedom Ridge Park (235 W. School St., Ridgeland). Celebrate the holiday season by viewing Christmas lights and participating in family-friendly activities. Call 800468-6078. Global Tree Display through Dec. 31, at Jackson Zoo (2918 W. Capitol St.). Take a memorable journey traveling through South America, Asia, Africa and India while embracing each holiday tree’s unique culture. Free with paid admission; call 601352-2580.

COMMUNITY JPS Pepsi Holiday Basketball Tournament through Dec. 30, at Jackson State University: Williams Athletics and Assembly Center (1400 John R. Lynch St.). Tournament will feature 11 girls’ teams and 13 boys’ teams from throughout the state. Consolation games will be held at Forest Hill High School (2607 Raymond Road). Visit the JPS website for brackets and game times. $8 Dec. 28-29, $10 semifinals and finals; visit

December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011

Mississippi Music Foundation Money Match Program through Dec. 31. The program is for artists living in Mississippi who are seeking to record and release an original CD. MMF will match up to 50 percent of funds raised by an artist to complete one song or group of songs. All genres are accepted, but all groups or artists must apply and acceptance is not guaranteed. Call 662-429-2939.


Monday Night Football Mixer Jan. 3, at Dreamz JXN (426 W. Capitol St.). Each week, come to watch football on the big-screen television and enjoy burgers, wings and drinks. Wrestling fans watch WWE matches in the VIP Lounge. Free admission; call 601-979-3994. Restaurant Rave Call for Contestants through Dec. 31, at Jackson Convention and Visitors Bureau (111 E. Capitol St., Suite 102). Write a rave review in 100 words or less about your favorite Jackson restaurant and submit it by Dec. 31, and you could win a dinner for four. The winning restaurant review will be featured on and the Bureau’s Facebook and Twitter accounts. E-mail review to with the word “RAVE” in the subject line. Include full name, phone number and e-mail address. Entries can also

be submitted through by clicking “Want Free Food?” banner on the home page. Call 601-960-1891. LGBT Support Group for Youth/Young Adults Dec. 30, 6:30 p.m., at A Brave New Day (Fondren Corner, 2906 N. State St., Suite 204). Rise Above for Youth welcomes youth and young adults age 1424 to connect and share experiences and resources. The meeting is held the last Thursday of each month. Free; call 601-922-4968. “Snow Happy for our Patrons!” Contest Jan. 3-31, at Pearl Public Library (2416 Old Brandon Road, Pearl). Come inside and guess the number of snowflakes on display in the library. The person who guesses the exact number or comes the closest wins a prize. Call 601-932-2562. Jackson State of the Arts 2011 Jan. 3, 6 p.m., at North Midtown Arts Center. The open forum is for all greater Jackson arts-scene participants—teachers, musicians, a granting organization member, gallery owner, etc. Free; call 601-497-7454. Mississippi Health Awareness Day Call for Host Sites through Jan. 19. The Coalition for a Healthier Mississippi is actively recruiting host sites and vendors to perform free health screenings during Mississippi Health Awareness Day on Jan. 20. Call 601-487-8269 or 601-487-8275.

STAGE AND SCREEN Events at Russell C. Davis Planetarium (201 E. Pascagoula St.). Call 601-960-1552. • “The Alien Who Stole Christmas” Sky Show through Dec. 31. The film is about an alien who kidnaps St. Nicholas. Show times are 1 p.m. weekdays and 2 p.m. Saturday. $5.50 adults, $4.50 seniors, $3 children. • “Hurricane on the Bayou” Mega-HD Cinema through Dec. 31. Listen to a story shared through the eyes of four Louisiana musicians that explores the beauty and fragility of the Louisiana wetlands, the devastating effects of Hurricane Katrina and the tremendous efforts being made to bring back the city of New Orleans and the bayou to build a grand new future. Show times are 2 p.m. Dec. 29-30, and 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. Dec. 31. $6.50 adults, $5.50 seniors, $4 children. • “Season of Light” Sky Show through Dec. 31, 3 p.m. Explore the origins of the Star of Bethlehem, winter traditions and celebrations around the world. $5.50 adults, $4.50 seniors, $3 children. • “Mozart’s ‘Cosi fan tutte’” Jan. 2, 2 p.m., at Russell C. Davis Planetarium (201 E. Pascagoula St.). The Royal Opera House film is presented by the Mississippi Opera and the Mississippi Film Institute. $16; call 601-960-2300. “Mosquitoville: Mississippi Songs and Stories” Dec. 30, 7 p.m., at Panola Playhouse (212 Main St., Sardis). Grammy-winning entertainer Jimbo Mathus explores the origins of Mississippi mythology through the state’s indigenous folk music. $10; call 662-487-3975. Crossroads Music Video Showcase Call for Entries through Feb. 1. Musicians or filmmakers in or near Mississippi are eligible to participate. All music videos are due by 11:59 p.m. Feb. 1. Each music video selected for inclusion by the screening committee in the Crossroads Film Festival in April will receive tickets to the Music Video Showcase—one for the director and one for each band member. Please submit a separate entry form for each video. Free entry; visit

12 may participate. Parents may call to schedule an audition. Call 601-665-7374 or 601-549-0473. • Jan. 3, 5:30 p.m., at Parkway Heights United Methodist Church (2420 Hardy St., Hattiesburg). • Jan. 4, 4:30 p.m., at Covenant Presbyterian Church (4000 Ridgewood Road). Cotton District Arts Festival Songwriters Competition through Feb. 1. Starkville Area Arts Council invites amateur and professional songwriters to submit an original, lyrical song into the festival competition. Songs will be judged on melody, composition, structure and lyrics. All genres are accepted. Open to all ages. Applications are available online at The deadline for entries is Feb. 1 at 4:30 p.m. First, second, and third place prizes will be $250, $100 and $75 cash, respectively. All winners get to perform their song on one of the Cotton District Arts Festival main stages on April 23. $15 per song; call 662-325-3070. Chris Austin Songwriting Contest through Feb. 18. The contest recognizes winners in four categories—country, bluegrass, gospel/inspirational and general. To be eligible to enter, a songwriter must not derive more than 50 percent of his or her total income from songwriting or music publishing. All entries must be received by Feb. 18. 12 finalists will be announced during the first week of April 2011 and will compete at MerleFest in Wilkesboro, North Carolina. $30 entry fee; call 800-799-3838 or 336-838-6158.

LITERARY AND SIGNINGS “Torment” Dec. 30, 5 p.m., at Lemuria Books (202 Banner Hall, 4465 Interstate 55 N.). Lauren Kate signs copies of her book; reading of the book at 5:30 p.m. $17.99 book; call 601-366-7619. Story Time April 2-Dec. 25, at Borders (100 Dogwood Blvd.). A story will be read to children every Friday at 10 a.m. Free; call 601-919-0462.

CREATIVE CLASSES New Year’s Celebration Dec. 30, 6 p.m., at Viking Cooking School (Township at Colony Park, 1107 Highland Colony Parkway, Ridgeland). Learn to host the ultimate New Year’s Eve celebration. Topics include making a vinaigrette, preparing gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches, grilling shrimp and testing for doneness, searing and roasting beef tenderloin and caramelizing sugar with a blow torch. Space limited. $109; call 601-898-8345. Birds of a Feather Dec. 30, 7 p.m., at Easely Amused, Ridgeland (Trace Harbor Village, 7048 Old Canton Road, Suite 1002, Ridgeland). Paint birds and add fabric and buttons to create a mixed media piece. $32.10; call 769-251-5574. Fleur Dec. 30, 7 p.m., at Easely Amused, Flowood (2315 Lakeland Dr., Suite C, Flowood). Learn to pain a fleur de lis. $26.75; call 769-251-5574. Salsa Mississippi Dance Classes at La Salsa Dance Club and Studio (303 Mitchell Ave.). Zumba class is held Mondays at 5:30 p.m. Tuesdays, take the bachata class at 6 p.m. or the mild salsa class at 7 p.m. Wednesdays, beginners salsa is taught at 6 p.m., and intermediate salsa is taught at 7 p.m. Advanced salsa class is on Thursdays at 6 p.m. $10 per class; call 601-213-6355. Winter Figure Drawing Session Jan. 3-March 7, at Nunnery’s at Gallery 119—Fine Art & Framing (119 S. President St.). Jerrod Partridge will teach the 10-week course on Mondays from 6-9 p.m. Learn how to draw what you see more accurately. $275; call 601-668-5408.



Millsaps Chamber Singers: Texas Tour Jan. 2, 10:30 a.m., at Northminster Baptist Church (3955 Ridgewood Road). The group performs before traveling to give concerts in Louisiana and Texas. Free; call 601-974-1422.

“Adventures In Color” through Dec. 30, at Mississippi Library Commission (3881 Eastwood Drive). See paintings by Bewey Bowden. Hours are 8 a.m.5 p.m. weekdays. An opening reception will be held Nov. 16 from 5-7 p.m. Free; call 601-432-4056.

Mississippi Boychoir Auditions. Boys in grades 1-

Craft Exhibit through Dec. 31, at Mississippi Craft

Center (950 Rice Road, Ridgeland). See creations by Roselyn Polk. Free; call 601-856-7546. Art Exhibit Jan. 1-Feb. 28, at Mississippi Library Commission (3881 Eastwood Drive). See photography by Roy Adkins and glassworks by Jerri Sherer. The husband-and-wife team own Light and Glass Studio in downtown Jackson. Hours are 8 a.m.5 p.m. weekdays. Free; call 601-432-4056. Power APAC Exhibit through Jan. 7, at JacksonEvers International Airport (100 International Drive). Artwork by visual arts students is on display in the Jackson Public Schools display case. Free; call 601-960-5387. Four Seasons at The Cedars Winter Art Exhibit through Jan. 7, at The Cedars Historic Home (4145 Old Canton Road). Artwork by Sara Jane Alston, Cleta Ellington, Patti Henson and Diane Jacobs will be on display, including a special showing during Fondren After 5 on Dec. 2. Free; call 601-981-9606. “Megalodon: Largest Shark that Ever Lived” through Jan. 9, at Mississippi Museum of Natural Science (2148 Riverside Drive). The 60-foot, 2million-year-old Megalodon looms life-size in this mega-exhibit of modern and fossil sharks. Museum hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and 1-5 p.m. Sunday. $3-$5, free for members and children under 3; call 601-354-7303. Events at Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.). Museum hours are Tuesday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sunday, noon-5 p.m. $3-$5, children under 5 and museum members free; call 601-960-1515. • Cabbagetown: Photographs by Oraien Catledge through Jan. 16. Beginning in 1980, and for more than 20 years, Oraien Catledge captured in his black and white photographs the inhabitants and surroundings of the neglected industrial area near downtown Atlanta known as Cabbagetown. • Mississippi Watercolor Society Grand National Watercolor Exhibition through Jan. 16, in the public corridor. This annual presentation includes works from across the country in various waterbased mediums, organized in conjunction with the Mississippi Watercolor Society. “Welty Snapshots: At Home and Away” through Jan. 17, at Eudora Welty House (1119 Pinehurst Place). The exhibit, photographs taken by author Eudora Welty, features eight images from New York City and two from Mississippi during the Great Depression. Tuesday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; free. Check for updates and more listings. To add an event, e-mail all details (phone number, start/end date and time, street address, cost, URL, etc.) to or fax to 601510-9019. The deadline is noon the Thursday prior to the week of publication. Or add the event online yourself; check out for instructions.

BE THE CHANGE Food for Thought through Dec. 31, at Old Capitol Museum (100 S. State St.). Visitors are invited to donate books and non-perishable foods all month. Special programming for school groups will highlight the value of good citizenship. Call 601-576-6800. Super Bowl Raffle. Raffle tickets are being sold for a Super Bowl trip package for two to Super Bowl XLV on Feb. 6. The deadline is Jan. 10. Proceeds benefit Jobs for Mississippi Graduates (JMG), a dropout prevention program operating in all eight JPS high schools. $100; call 601-978-1711. Jackson Public Schools Call for Volunteers ongoing. JPS is seeking volunteers from the community to be mentors for seniors enrolled in the Advanced Seminar: Employability Skills course. Call 601-960-8310.




New Year’s Eve Events

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Bon Ami (Maywood Mar, 1200 E. Northside Drive, Suite 230, 601-928-0405) New Year’s Eve lunch with a special menu. Reservations required. BRAVO! (4500 Interstate 55 N., Highland Village, 601-982-8111) This special dinner includes six courses with five wine pairings at an additional cost. Swing de Paris performs. Seating times are at 6 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. The late seating includes Champagne, favors and fireworks at midnight. Reservations are required. $70 early seating, $90 late seating, $55 wine pairings. C-Notes Studio Bar and Grill (6550 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland), 8:30 p.m. Dinner, live music by The Amazin’ Lazy Boi Band and Champagne at midnight. $15. CrossRoads International House of Worship (4085 Northview Drive, 601-366-3944 or 769-233-6039), 8:30 p.m. Enjoy a fusion of fun, fellowship, music, food and an encouraging word for the New Year. Children and teens can enjoy a separate concert just for them. $10 single, $8 per person in group, $5 youth concert. Electric Cowboy (6107 Ridgewood Road) Dance all night long to the musical stylings of DJ Cadillac and DJ RPM all night long. Champagne toast at midnight. $15 for 21 and up and $20 for 18 and up. Fire (209 S. Commerce St.) David Banner’s New Year’s Eve Party, 8 p.m. Enjoy a performance by hip-hop artist David Banner and complimentary Champagne at midnight. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster. $32.70; call 601-5921000 or 800-745-3000. Hal and Mal’s (200 S. Commerce St., 601-9480888, Sippi the catfish will be dropped from higher heights and with new glam. Private party by invitation only. Huntington’s Grille (1001 E. County Line Road, 601-957-1515) Special four-course dinner, party favors, live entertainment and complimentary Champagne. $75 per person. Reservations required. Plus “Ride the elevator home” special at the Hilton includes breakfast for $99. Jackson Convention Complex (105 E. Pascagoula St.), 7:30 p.m. Make-A-Wish Foundation’s New Year’s Eve Gala. Enjoy music by The Krackerjacks, dinner, a Champagne toast and breakfast, dancing and party favors. $150, $275 set of two. For more information call 601-966-9474 or visit Last Call Sports Grill (1428 Old Square Road, 601-981-4775), 9 p.m. All Black Party. Ladies dressed in black drink free until 11 p.m. Night includes music by DJ Hot Mike Boy, champagne at midnight and drink specials. Martin’s Restaurant & Bar (214 S. State St., 601-

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Mezza Restaurant (1896 Main St., Madison), 10 p.m. Bring in the new year at the Hot Salsa New Year’s Eve party with music and dancing. Beer and wine coolers available, otherwise BYOB. $10. Call 601-213-6355 for information. Pan-Asia (720 Harbor Point Crossing, Ridgeland, 601-956-2958), 6 p.m. Enjoy a special threecourse menu with dessert and hourly gift-card drawings. At midnight, a grand prize of a gourmet dinner for 10 will be given. Reservations are required. $50. Poet’s II (1855 Lakeland Drive, 601-982-4111), 9 p.m. Live music by Diesel 255 and Champagne toast at midnight. Reed Pierce’s Sportsman’s Grill (6791 Siwell Road, 601-376-0777), 9 p.m. Special menu, drink specials, pool tables and music by the Tommy Akers Band. $20. Sophia’s Restaurant/Fairview Inn (734 Fairview St., 601-948-3429) Dinner celebration, 6 to 10 p.m. 3-course or 4-course menu available with choices of frog legs tempura, tartare duo, wild mushrooms, smoked tomato bisque, grilled radicchio, Maine sea scallops, Sonoma duck breast, Angus filet mignon, Hawaiian Tuna, roasted apple beignet, red velvet cake and chocolate, chocolate surprise. Music by Nonchalantes for listening and dancing. Reservations required by phone or online at Sportsman’s Lodge (1120 E Northside Drive, 601-366-5441), 7 p.m. The celebration includes live music, free New Year’s Eve swag, drink specials and a Champagne toast at midnight. Free admission. Strawberry Café (107 Depot Drive, Madison, 601-856-3822) Featuring a four-course dinner including appetizer, soup or salad, an entrée and dessert. Menu options include seared scallops, cream of crawfish with asparagus soup, chocolate and strawberry salad, four-ounce filet, coldwater lobster tail, grouper and strawberry Fosters. Price is $82 per couple; wine pairing at cost. Suite 106 (106 Wilmington St., 601-371-8003) 9 p.m. Dance to music by Phingaprint and Sean Mac. $1 Sangria, mimosas, poinsettias and house wine all night. Free Champagne from 11 p.m. to 12:01 a.m.; $10 cover; Call 601-940-7059 or e-mail suite106lounge@gmail for group rates. Time Out Sports Café (6270 Old Canton Road, 601-978-1839) Yardogs 30-year reunion includes free shuttle, party favors all night long, free buffet and a Champagne toast at midnight. Underground 119 (119 S. President St., 601-3522322, Party with live blues music by King Edward and free champagne. $15 cover. For more options or to add your own, go to


ooking for something to do on New Year’s Eve? Look no further. Whether it’s a gala, a dance party or an intimate dinner you seek, the metro area has got you covered.

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by Terri Cowart

Family Traditions

MONTE’S CONCH FRITTERS (WITH MUSTARD SAUCE) 1 pound conch or shrimp 2 teaspoons Old Bay Seasoning 2 red bell peppers 2 green bell peppers 1 egg 2 1/2 cups self-rising flour 2 large onions 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper Oil for frying

Rinse the conch and remove and discard the orange fin and the foot. Chop into the bowl of the food processor and mince. (I prefer the vegetables to be coarsely chopped by hand so there are crunchy pieces in the fritters.) Place the minced conch and vegetables in a bowl; add the seasonings, egg and flour. Roll into small balls. Bring the oil to 350 degrees. Add one fritter at a time, waiting a few seconds before adding the next. Fry only five at a time, removing and adding as they are cooked. Cooking so few fritters at a time means that the oil is kept at a constant temperature rather than dropping a few degrees each time more food is added. This keeps the fritters crunchy rather than oily and soggy. Fry each batch of fritters for five minutes or until golden and light. Drain and serve with the mustard sauce. Makes around 30 fritters or 10 servings.


3 tablespoons mayonnaise 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice 1 tablespoon prepared mustard Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Mix all the ingredients together, and add salt and pepper to taste. Makes about a quarter cup of sauce.

always sat on a corner end. My heritage is southern—Delta southern, to be exact. So when my assignment was to explore other heritages and their favorite grandmother-prepared recipes, I learned I don’t have the market covered with sweet memories of food and family. Speaking with her strong Asian accent, Lily Qu talked about a large dumpling that her Chinese family would prepare together. Unlike the smaller ones we are accustomed to eating, Lily said the dumpling was large enough to last up to three days. Eaten only during holidays and the Chinese New Year, “the Dumpling represents good luck and family union,” she said. During the High Holy Days of Judaism, one of Bettye Sue Kline’s family favorites, which her grandmother Lizzie Lamensdorf served is noodle kugel, “or some form of it.” Mrs. Kline owned an exclusive ladies boutique in downtown Vicksburg for 25 years. “We had a very active Jewish community here in Vicksburg. The B’nai Brith Literary Club was a social club for Jewish families. It was like a country club without the golf course,” she explained. The word “kugel” is Yiddish. It is a baked Jewish pudding or casserole served on the Jewish Sabbath or other Jewish holidays. Tony Franco died more than a decade ago. Seven Catholic priests presided over the funeral of this very devout Italian Catholic. It was the love of family, my sister-in-law Donna Franco Cowart describes, when she speaks of her dad. His white spaghetti was a recipe Donna remembers enjoying as a young girl. A recipe of her paternal grandmother, Vera Franco, that was usually prepared on Fridays. “Mama used this recipe of my

FRANCO’S WHITE SPAGHETTI 10-12 cloves garlic, chopped 2 to 3 whole red peppers, chopped (or 2 to 3 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes) 3/4 to 1 cup extra virgin olive oil 12 to 16 ounces thin spaghetti or vermicelli Parmesan or Romano cheese, grated Anchovies (optional) Salt to taste (if not using anchovies)

In Dutch oven skillet, sauté garlic and pepper in olive oil until garlic is light brown. Remove from heat. Boil spaghetti in large stockpot, according to package directions. Remove 1 to 2 cups water from spaghetti and add to sautéed ingredients. Simmer five minutes. Drain spaghetti and return to stockpot. If using anchovies, add to spaghetti. Pour simmered contents over spaghetti and let stand a few minutes. Serve in bowls topped with Parmesan or Romano cheese.

Terri Cowart (on the right) sits with her grandmother, Stella Davis Cowart, or Mimi, holding Terri’s oldest daughter Anna at her christening in 1983.

grandmother’s on Fridays during Lent, since it is a meatless dish.” Admitting that she tweaks it a bit now to be conducive to her family’s faster-paced lifestyle, it is still a dish she enjoys eating. Conchs are large sea snails (the shell we put to our ear to hear the ocean). Conch is also what a person is referred to if they are a native of Key West. My husband’s grandfather Walter Norman was a conch. He would tell stories to my husband of his childhood memories of seeing Ernest Hemingway drunk, of course, around the island. In 1979 he self-published a book “Nicknames and Conch Tales” that recounts this and many other tales from the Key. My husband, also named Walter, spent many of his Christmas holidays visiting his grandparents in the Keys. He snorkeled while his friends back home were wearing jackets and boots. One of his favorite dishes his grandmother Berta prepared was conch fritters—the Key West version of hushpuppies. Grandmothers and favorite foods seem to be synonymous with one another. What did your grandmother cook and you loved to eat? I think I’m going to bake myself a chocolate cake today.

MIMI’S CHOCOLATE CAKE 1 1/2 sugar 3 eggs beaten 1 1/2 stick butter 1 teaspoon vanilla 3/4 cup milk 2 1/4 cup self rising flour, sifted

Combine sugar, eggs, butter and vanilla. Beat at a high speed for three minutes, then add milk and flour, a little at a time. Beat on low speed for another two minutes. Bake in three round pans at 325 degrees for 30-35 minutes. Pans should be oiled with butter or margarine.


1 2/3 cup sugar 3 big tablespoons of cocoa powder 1/3 to 1/2 stick of butter 1/2 cup milk

Cook until it starts to boil. Stir with spoon while it continues cooking, until it becomes thick but not too thick to spread on cake (about 30 minutes.)

CHINESE DUMPLINGS ½ pound ground pork (can add shrimp as well) 3 onions or cabbage, chopped 1 cup of oil 1/4 cup soy sauce 1 teaspoon of salt to taste Dumpling wrappers

Mix together and let sit for one hour in the refrigerator. After it has sat for an hour, fill a dumpling wrapper with one teaspoon of filling and fold in half. Using your hands, seal the edges with a little water. Place filled dumplings into pot of boiling water and stir to separate dumplings so they do not stick together. Boil for five minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from water with strainer or spatula with holes. Eat while hot. Makes about a dozen dumplings.

NOODLE KUGEL 8 ounce fine noodles, cooked 1/2 cup melted butter 1/2 cup cream cheese, room temperature 1 cup cottage cheese 1 cup sour cream 3/4 cup sugar 4 eggs 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Cook noodles according to package direction. After noodles are drained, but still warm, add remainder of ingredients, mixing well. Grease a 9x13 baking dish with butter. Pour in noodle mixture. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes. Add topping and continue to bake for an additional 30 minutes.


1 cup graham cracker crumbs 4 tablespoons sugar 4 tablespoons of melted butter

Combine together and spread on top of kugel (see above.) Serves 6 to 8.


he smell of garden-fresh butterbeans and field peas simmered in a dollop of bacon grease and smooth, sweet corn picked, shucked and scraped off the cob was thickened with a little white flour. Fried cornbread dressing was served from a speckled metal roaster pan and hidden under a simple metal cover sat everyone’s favorite, grandmother’s chocolate cake. If you waited too long to serve your plate, you risked missing out on a slice. In the middle of my grandmother’s kitchen stood two card tables pressed together, covered with a simple cotton tablecloth. Any time our family came together for a holiday or reunion, food was served from this makeshift island. Hardly an inch of space showed. My grandmother’s chocolate cake


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Mellow Mushroom (275 Dogwood Blvd, Flowood, 601-992-7499) Pizzas of all kinds, munchies, calzones, grilled hoagies, salads and more make up the extensive and “eclectic” menu at Mellow Mushroom. Award-winning beer selection. The Pizza Shack (1220 N State St. 601-352-2001) 2009 and 2010’s winner of Best Pizza offers the perfect pizza-and-a-beer joint. Creative pizza options abound along with sandwiches, wings, salads and even BBQ. Sal & Mookie’s (565 Taylor St. 601-368-1919) Pizzas of all kinds plus pasta, eggplant parmesan and the local favorite: fried ravioli. Best Chef, Best Dessert, Best Kid’s Menu & Best Ice Cream in the 2010 Best of Jackson.


BRAVO! (4500 Interstate 55 N., Jackson, 601-982-8111) Wood-fired pizzas, vegetarian fare, plus creative pastas, beef, and seafood specials. Award-winning wine list. Cerami’s (5417 Lakeland Drive, Flowood, 601-919-28298) Southern-style Italian cuisine features their signature Shrimp Cerami (white wine sauce, capers artichokes) along with veal, tilapia, crawfish, chicken and pasta dishes. Now with liquor license! Fratesi’s (910 Lake Harbour, Ridgeland, 601-956-2929) “Authentic, homey, unpretentious” that’s how the regulars describe Fratesi’s, a staple in Jackson for years, offering great Italian favorites with loving care. The tiramisu is a must-have!



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Cups Espresso Café (Multiple Locations, Jackson’s local group of coffeehouses offer high-end Arabica beans, a wide variety of espresso drinks. Wi-fi. Wired Espresso Café (115 N State St 601-500-7800) This downtown coffeehouse is a true gathering place, featuring great coffee and a selection of breakfast, lunch and pastry items. Wi-fi. Broad Street Bakery (4465 Interstate 55 N. 601-362-2900) Hot breakfast,coffee espresso drinks, fresh breads and pastries, gourmet deli sandwiches, quiches, soups, pizzas and dessert. Campbell’s Bakery (3013 N State Street 601-362-4628) Cookies, cakes and cupcakes are accompanied by good coffee and a full-cooked Southern breakfast on weekdays . Primos Cafe (2323 Lakeland 601-936-3398/ 515 Lake Harbour 601-898-3400) A Jackson institution featuring a full breakfast, blue-plate specials, catfish, burgers, prime rib, oysters, po-boys and wraps. Save room for something from their famous bakery! For Heaven’s Cakes (4950 Old Canton Road 601-991-2253) Cakes and cupcakes for all occasions including weddings, parties, catered events. Beagle Bagel (4500 I-55 North, Suite 145, Highland Village 769-251-1892) Fresh bagels in tons of different styles with a variety of toppings including cream cheese, lox, eggs, cheese, meats and or as full sandwiches for lunch. Paninis, wraps and much more!


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Closed Dec. 29th | Open Dec. 30 & 31 Tues. - Fri. 11am - 3pm, Closed Sat. 182 Raymond Rd. in Jackson, MS Telephone: 601-373-7707 E-mail:

Hickory Pit Barbeque (1491 Canton Mart Rd. 601-956-7079) The “Best Butts in Town” features BBQ chicken, beef and pork sandwiches along with burgers and po’boys. Lumpkins BBQ (182 Raymond Rd. Jackson 866-906-0942) Specializing in smoked barbeque, Lumpkin’s offers all your favorites for on-site family dining or for catered events, including reunions, office events, annivesaries, weddings and more.


Cool Al’s (4654 McWillie, 601-713-3020) A Best of Jackson fixture, Cool Al’s signature stacked, messy, decadent, creative burgers defy adjectives. And don’t forget the fries! Fenian’s Pub (901 E. Fortification St. 601-948-0055) Classic Irish pub featuring a menu of traditional food, pub sandwiches and beers such as Guinness and Harp on tap. Stamps Superburgers (1801 Dalton Street 601-352-4555) Huge burgers will keep you full until the next day! The homestyle fries are always fresh. Hal and Mal’s (200 S. Commerce St. 601-948-0888) Pub favorites meet Gulf Coast and Cajun specialties like red beans and rice, the Oyster Platter or each day’s blackboard special. Last Call (3716 I-55 N. Frontage Road 601-713-2700) Burgers, sandwiches and po-boys, plus sports-bar appetizers and specialities. Pay-per-view sporting events, live bands. Martin’s Restaurant and Lounge (214 South State Street 601-354-9712) Lunch specials, pub appetizers (jalapeno poppers, cheezsticks, fried pickles) or order from the full menu of poboys and entrees. Full bar, massive beer selection and live music most nights. Time Out Sports Café (6720 Old Canton Road 601-978-1839) 14 TVs, 1 projector and two big-screens. Daily $9 lunch specials, pub-style appetizers, burgers, seafood and catfish po-boys, salads, and hot entrees including fish, steak and pasta. Ole Tavern on George Street (416 George St. 601-960-2700) Pub food with a southern flair: beer-battered onion rings, chicken & sausage gumbo, salads, sandwiches and weekly lunch specials. Plus, happy hour 4-7pm Monday through Friday. Poets Two (1855 Lakeland Drive, Suite H-10, 601-364-9411) Pub fare at its finest. Crabcake minis, fried dills, wings, poppers, ultimate fries, sandwiches, po-boys, pasta entrees and steak. The signature burgers come in bison, kobe, beef or turkey!

Eslava’s Grille

Paid advertising section.


Sportsman’s Lodge (1120 E Northside Dr. in Maywood Mart 601-366-5441) Voted Best Sports Bar in 2010, Sportman’s doesn’t disappoint with plenty of gut-pleasing sandwiches, fried seafood baskets, sandwiches and specialty appetizers. Underground 119 (119 South President St. 601-352-2322) Jumbo lump crabcakes, crab quesadillas, beef tenderloin parfaits, orange-garlic shrimp, even “lollipop” lamb chops. Add a full bar and mix in great music. Opens 4 p.m.-until, Wed-Sat. Wing Stop (952 North State Street, 601-969-6400) Saucing and tossing wings in a choice of nine flavors, Wingstop wings are made with care and served up piping hot. Every order is made fresh to order; check out the fresh cut seasoned fries!


STIX (109 Marketplace Lane off Lakeland Dr Flowood 601-420-4058) Enjoy the quickhanded, knife-wielding chefs at the flaming teppanyaki grill; artful presentations of sushi; the pungent seasonings and spicy flavors of regional Chinese cuisines. Nagoya (6351 I-55 North #131 @ Target Shopping Ctr. 601-977-8881) Nagoya gets high marks for its delicious-and-affordable sushi offerings, tasty lunch specials and high-flying hibachi room with satisfying flavors for the whole family. Ichiban (153 Ridge Drive, Ste 105F 601-919-0097 & 359 Ridgeway 601-919-8879) Voted “Best Chinese” in 2010, cuisine styles at Ichiban actually range from Chinese to Japanese, including hibachi, sushi made fresh with seafood, and a crowd-pleasing buffet. Pan Asia (720 Harbor Pines Dr, Ridgeland 601-956-2958) Beautiful ambiance in this popular Ridgeland eatery accompanies signature asian fusion dishes and build-your-own stirfrys using fresh ingredients and great sauces.


Mimi’s Family and Friends (3139 North State Street 601-366-6111) Funky local art decorates this Fondren eatery, offering cheese grits, red beans & rice, pork tacos and pimento cheese, among many others. Breakfast and lunch, new days are Tuesday-Sunday. Sugar’s Place (168 W Griffith St 601-352-2364) Hot breakfast and weekday lunch: catfish, pantrout, fried chicken wings, blue plates, red beans & rice, pork chops, chicken & dumplings. The Strawberry Café (107 Depot Drive, Madison, 601-856-3822) Full service, lunch and dinner. Crab and crawfish appetizers, salads, fresh seafood, pastas, “surf and turf” and more. Veggie options. Desserts: cheesecake, Madison Mud and strawberry shortcake. Two Sisters Kitchen (707 N. Congress St. 601-353-1180) 2010 Best of Jackson winner for fried chicken offers a sumptious buffet of your choice of veggies, a salad bar, iced tea & one of three homemade desserts. Lunch only. Mon-Friday, Sun. Crab’s Seafood Shack (6954 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland, 601-956-5040). This new casual eatery offers crab in many forms, including an an all-you-can-eat special on Tues-Thurs evenings. Plus oysters, po-boys, appetizers and much more. Great atmosphere!


Seafood, Steaks and Pasta

A Metro-Area Tradition Since 1977

Lunch: Fri. & Sun. | 11am-2pm Dinner: Tues. -Sat. & Sun. | 5pm-9pm

601-919-2829 5417 Lakeland Drive ~ Flowood, MS 39232

Danilo Eslava Caceres, Executive Chef/GM 2481 Lakeland Drive Flowood, MS 39232

601-932-4070 tel 601-933-1077 fax

Monday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Home Cookin’, Hot Lunches, Game Room, and Cold Beer! Now Open on Sunday! 601-362-6388

1410 Old Square Road • Jackson



1801 Dalton Street (601) 352-4555 Fax: (601) 352-4510

5752 Terry Road (601) 376-0081 Fax: (601) 373-7349



Aladdin Mediterranean Grill (730 Lakeland Drive 601-366-6033) Delicious authentic dishes including lamb dishes, hummus, falafel, kababs, shwarma and much more. Consistent award winner, great for takeout or for long evenings with friends. Kristos (971 Madison Ave @ Hwy 51, Madison, 601-605-2266) Home of the famous Greek meatball! Hummus, falafel, dolmas, pita sandwiches, salads, plus seasoned curly fries (or sweet potato fries) and amazing desserts. Mezza (1896 Main St., Suite A, Madison 601-853-0876) Mediterranean cuisine and wood fired brick oven pizzas. Come experience the beautiful patio, Hookahs, and delicious food. Beer is offered and you are welcome to bring your own wine.

closed new year’s day

New Year! 707 N Congress St., Jackson | 601-353-1180 Open 11am-2pm, Sunday thru Friday





Fuego Mexican Cantina (318 South State Street,601-592-1000) Next to Club Fire in downtown, Fuego is Jackson’s all-new Mexican restaurant. King Tortas International Deli (1290 E. County Line Rd, Ridgeland, 601-983-1253) Bakery and taqueria; try the fried plantains! High Noon Café (2807 Old Canton Road in Rainbow Plaza 601-366-1513) Fresh, gourmet, tasty and healthy defines the lunch options at Jackson’s own strict vegetarian (and very-vegan-friendly) restaurant.

Yes, We’re Open

wishes you a

a Th


ou Y k

910 Lake Harbour Dr. Ridgeland | 601-956-2929 Monday - Saturday | 5 - until

n” g us ks o 10 t i n n Ja c 9 • 20 o V Fo r e c ue i • 200 a r b 008 B st 06 • 2 e B “ • 20 3 200


Best Butts In Town!

since 1980


1491 Canton Mart Rd. • Jackson

Eslava’s Grille (2481 Lakeland Drive, 601-932-4070) Danny Eslava’s namesake feature Latin-influenced dishes like ceviche in addition to pastas, steaks, salads and other signature seafood dishes. Rocky’s (1046 Warrington Road, Vicksburg 601-634-0100) Enjoy choice steaks, fresh seafood, great salads, hearty sandwiches and much more in the “polished casual” dining room. Open 24/7 in the Riverwalk Casino. Parker House (104 South East Madison Drive, Ridgeland 601-856-0043) European and Creole take on traditional Southern ingredients. Crawfish, oysters, crab and steaks dominate, with creative option like Crab Mac ‘n Cheese, Oysters Rockefeller and Duck Jezebel.


3013 North State Street in Historic Fondren


NYE 2 010 - Never A Cover Live Music by


Free Champagne at Midnight and Free Party Favors


Brian Jones (Acoustic Rock)



601-853-3299 • 398 Hwy 51 • Ridgeland

F O R T HAT N EW Y E A R ’ S EV E PA RT Y . . .

FRIDAY 12/31

2084 Dubarton Drive Jackson MS 39216 601.896.6022

Opening at 5pm

Fulkerson Pace (Classic Rock)


December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011



15% off Deep Tissue & Relaxation Massage

(Behind Penn’s on Lakeland)

(Indie/Rock) SATURDAY 1/1

Open Mic with A Guy Named George

Sunday & Monday

for Cosmetologists, Massage Therapists, Barbers & Estheticians


Karaoke w/ Matt

Buy 1 Outfit, GET 15% OFF Accessories!

310 Mitchell Ave Jackson, MS 601.366.6403




Free gift wrapping with $50 purchase

(Traditional Irish)

Open 11am - Midnight





New Year’s Special: Buy a party dress! get 40% o" the next item#


2 NEW PIZZAS & NEW BEERS! Stop in and try our Pizza Margherita and our Cordon Blue Pizza Now Serving Tall Grass Ale and Diamond Bear Pale Ale

Dine-In / Carry-Out

Mon - Thur: 11am-10pm Fri - Sat: 11am-11pm Sun: 11am - 9pm

1220 N. State St.

(across from Baptist Medical Center)




read more Body&Soul stories and the blog at

by Jessica Kinnison

Making Sense of Our Stories

December 29, 2010 - January 4, 2011


quickly, remain healthier longer and achieve long-term goals. Even cancer patients who participated in expressive writing sessions just before treatment said they felt better, mentally and physically, as compared with patients who did not write, according to a study in the February 2008 issue of The Oncologist. Without being told to do so, patients use archetypal myths of battle, journey, death and rebirth to describe the course of their illnesses. In their narratives, patients seek to answer the questions of why they became ill, what their illnesses mean in the context of their lives, and how they can reshape their lives to manage the changes illness imposes, writes Anne Hunsaker Hawkins in “Reconstructing Illness: Studies in Pathography” (Purdue University Press, 1999). In all these diverse areas of health care, patients use writing to work through this question: What is the point to all of this? “Myths are like the beams in a house: not exposed to outside view, they are the structure which holds the house together so people can live in it,” psychologist Rollo May wrote in “The Cry for Myth” (W. W. Norton & Company, 1991). May said that modern humans need stories to help them deal with “aching hearts” and “repining,” just like the Greeks did when they looked to their myths for meaning. “(Greek) myths no longer serve their function of making sense of existence,” he wrote. “The citizens of our day are left without direction or purpose in life, and people are at a loss to control their anxiety and excessive guilt feeling.” Scientists are trying to determine why writing seems to help us as much as it does. We know our stories are part myth and part memory, but what else? Annie Sullivan, Helen Keller’s teacher, wrote this in the epigraph to the play “The Miracle Worker”: “She asked, ‘What is a soul?’ ‘No one knows,’ I replied; ‘but we know it is not the body, and it is that part of us which thinks and loves and hopes. … [It] is invisible. …’ ‘But if I write what my FILE PHOTO


ave you ever been in love? You know, “love” like in the storybooks, like the gods and goddesses, like a Shakespeare sonnet? Have you ever been so confused, so sick, so lost that you questioned your fundamental belief system like Job or Dante did? If you said yes to any of these questions, writing about those feelings will help you work through them. Putting them down on paper captures memories, stringing a full picture together so that the world doesn’t seem so overwhelming. Constructing a narrative—your story—provides a structure where we can input and organize the Easy Ways unexplainable things about beto Write ing alive, like putting data in a Every Day spreadsheet. When it is on the • E-mail page, whether or not our “for• Letters mula” yields a direct summa• Blogging tion, it is there to analyze. • Journaling Writing is memory on • Lists paper, and it is through memory that we create our own myths. We remember the way our parents moved; we remember smells; we remember pain. We remember getting stuck on the monkey bars, getting our shoelaces tangled in the bicycle chain until we fell over and embarrassingly mispronouncing “colonel” in front of the class. Have you ever asked family members about an event and gotten a dozen different versions? Who knows what actually happened and what didn’t? Memory is just myth, and a myth is just a story. Myths provide narrative patterns that give meaning to our existence. They are the stories that provide guides for us to identify how we are feeling. We gain comfort from the fact that there is structure in place through which we can deal with the loneliness and anxiety that pervades modern life. A long line of research starting with Joshua M. Smyth’s chronic-illness research, first published in 1999, shows that writing improves memory and sleep, boosts immune-cell activity, speeds healing after surgery, helps Alzheimer’s patients sort through their memories and facilitates mental-health work, especially with those suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. Writing can help healthy people find jobs more

soul thinks,’ she said, ‘then it will be visible, and the words will be its body.’” Writing gives arms and legs to our feelings. It makes them concrete and more manageable, sitting across from us like a body on the page. If you’ve ever been in love—you know: “love,” like in the storybooks, like the gods and goddesses, like a Shakespeare sonnet; if you’ve ever been confused, sick or lost that you have questioned your fundamental belief system like Job or Dante did, then pick up a pen and paper and start writing your own myth to make sense of it all.

Writing as a Repository Writing your story is: • A celebration of individual voice, character and identity; • A record of memory and experience; • An opportunity to communicate or witness; • A chance to develop skills, thoughts and feelings (writing as a form of thinking). FROM: “CREATIVE WRITING IN HEALTH AND SOCIAL CARE,” (JESSICA KINGSLEY PUBLISHERS, 2004) EDITED BY FIONA SAMPSON.

Good Listening “Alzheimer’s, Memory and Being” on Being (formerly Speaking of Faith)

Good Reading Joan Didion, “The Year of Magical Thinking” (Alfred A. Knopf, 2005, $23.95) Kay Redfield Jamison, “An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness” (Vintage, 1997, $15) Rollo May, “The Cry for Myth” (Delta, 1991, $25) Louise DeSalvo, “Writing as a Way of Healing: How Telling Our Stories Transforms Our Lives” (Beacon Press, 2000, $16) Barry Lane, “Writing as a Road to Self-Discovery” (Discover Writing Press, Second Edition, 1998, $17) Jean-Dominique Bauby, “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 1998, $13)

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