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May 18 - 24, 2011

May 18 - 24, 2011



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6 No Apologies Jackson gets no apology from a Madison County sheriff candidate for slamming the city in his campaign ad. TIM ROBERSON

Cover photograph Courtesy of MPB / Corbis



The Mississippi River’s rising waters promise the worst floods since the 1927 devastation.

jeanne luckett

17 Free Press Homage The Mississippi Free Press lent its guiding principles and historic name to the Jackson Free Press.

41 Green ‘Moons An eco-honeymoon can provide the trip of a lifetime. Plus, local bridal registries for unique gifts.

they have learned to a new generation of civil-rights activists. This has been, at times, difficult work. Mississippi arrested 329 civil-rights workers as Freedom Riders, and several more participated in the protests in other places. Many are no longer with us. “Our numbers indicate that 100 of them are deceased,” Luckett says, “and a number are infirm.” Surviving, healthy Freedom Riders, who range in age from 63 to 95, demonstrate considerable courage in returning to a Mississippi that, in many cases, treated them in a horrifying and traumatic way, she says. The arrests were often brutal experiences, and Freedom Riders’ treatment at the hands of Mississippi’s law enforcement system was not, on the whole, humane. “It was humiliating. It was degrading. It was violent,” Luckett says. “Some of them were beaten when they were in prison.” The event also gives Freedom Riders the opportunity to reconnect, sometimes for the first time, and to return to a city that has changed a great deal over the past 50 years. It’s likely to be an emotional week—for the Freedom Riders themselves and for those in attendance. For more information, visit ms50th or call 601979-1517. —Tom Head


Jeanne Luckett has a contagious enthusiasm for studying and preserving Mississippi’s civil-rights legacy. She put her passion and energy to use helping to plan the 50th anniversary Freedom Riders reunion in Jackson from May 22 through May 26. Luckett, 66, was a student at Provine High School when the Freedom Riders came to Jackson in 1961, and she came of age alongside Mississippi’s Civil Rights Movement. “The same year James Meredith integrated Ole Miss, I was a freshman at Millsaps,” Luckett says. After graduating, Luckett taught in the public-school system, worked at Mississippi Public Broadcasting (where she helped produce and film a documentary on the first Medgar Evers Homecoming) and, eventually, went on to start her own business, Luckett Communications. Most recently, she worked with Myrlie Evers on the Medgar Evers Home and Museum, where Medgar Evers was murdered in 1964, maintained by Tougaloo College. She calls her work there ”a great privilege” that “continues to be a joy and a challenge at the same time.” Luckett has worked on the Freedom Riders reunion event for 18 months, helping to locate surviving Freedom Riders, plan events commemorating their work and give them opportunities to teach what


4 ............. Editor’s Note 4 ................... Slowpoke 6 ........................... Talks 12 ................... Editorial 12 ..................... Chatter 12 ..................... Stiggers 12 ......................... Zuga 13 ................... Opinion 28 ................ Diversions 30 ...................... 8 Days 31 ............... JFP Events 32 ....................... Music 33 ......... Music Listings 36 .................. Astrology 38 ......................... Food 41 .................... Hitched 42 .... Girl About Town

100-Year Flood


editor’snote Adam Lynch Award-winning senior reporter Adam Lynch is a Winona native and graduate of Jackson State. He and his family live in north Jackson. Email him at adam@, or call him at 601-362-6121, ext. 13. He wrote Talks for this issue.

Adam Perry Account executive Adam Perry is a local musician who lives in Flowood where he, his wife and daughter are herded through life by two supreme beings posing as unruly house-cats. He manages JFP distribution and sales accounts.

Andrea Thomas Advertising designer Andrea Thomas is a native of Ridgeland and is a recent Antonelli College graduate. She loves to sing, dance and write poetry in her free time. She designed ads for this issue.

Ashley Jackson Account executive Ashley Jackson is a Brandon native. She loves volunteering with youth, cooking, doing homework, wearing awesome shoes and dancing like a fool while playing her extensive vinyl collection.

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.

Lacey McLaughlin News editor Lacey McLaughlin is a Florida native who enjoys riding her bike around Jackson. She is always on the hunt for news tips. Email Lacey@ or call 601-362-6121 ext. 22.

Latasha Willis

May 18 - 24, 2011

Events editor Latasha Willis is a native Jacksonian, a graduate of Tougaloo College and the proud mother of one cat. Her JFP blog is “The Bricks That Others Throw,” and she sells design pieces at reasontolive.


by Donna Ladd, Editor-in-Chief

Strenuous Liberty


saw an earth-shattering tweet yesterday. The Fairview Inn in Belhaven was tweeting the link to their blog post heralding the Freedom Riders’ anniversary. So what, you might respond. It’s just a nice hotel doing good marketing. Oh, but it’s much more than that. It is a statement that Mississippi has changed. You see, when I first moved back to Mississippi in 2002, I lived diagonally across the street from the Fairview. At the time, its long-time proprietor William J. (Bill) Simmons still lived there, and his family ran it as an inn. We’d see people of all races park in front of our house and pour into the Fairview for luncheons and weddings. It seemed like business as usual. But I also happened to know Mr. Simmons’ history. To put it mildly, during the Civil Rights Movement, he was a vicious racist who expressed beliefs in scientific racism (basically, the hokum that science “proved” black folks inferior to whites), and he was leader of the Citizens Councils of America. Oh, and he was editor of that angry hateful paper, The Citizens Informer. After we started the JFP, named for a very different paper from the 1960s called the Mississippi Free Press, I would stand in the window looking at the Fairview, glowing across the way. I would think about how I wanted my newspaper to be the worst nightmare of men like Simmons and his friends in the day, back when they did everything they could (and succeeded too well) to keep our schools segregated by setting up white academies and council schools for white kids to be “safe” from black children. And it was these same “citizens councilors” who came up with the idea of “youth indoctrination” after the Brown v. Board decision of 1954. Basically, they wanted to convince white children that they were superior, that blacks were more violent (ironic considering the violence committed against African Americans throughout our state’s history), that they couldn’t trust “the other.” Thus, it felt downright gothic for my paper to come into fruition across from Simmons and the Fairview Inn. I’ve always believed that God has a wry sense of humor. Almost everywhere I look, I see evidence that Simmons and his band of fools lost the battle. I live in a Jackson that is actively trying to heal its wounds, where young people (even many who went to those white academies) are inspired to be more than the sum of our upbringing. These young people are rejecting the

propaganda—and many are hungry for the adventure stories of the courageous Freedom Riders who helped save us from ourselves. Of course, we still have vestiges, and they are never nastier than in political campaigns where, inevitably, a handful of fools try to divide the rest of us for political gain. You can almost feel sorry for a young guy like Madison County sheriff candidate Mark Sandridge—it’s probably that no one ever taught him the history that might have stopped him from trying to divide our counties by a highway, the good people on one side, the violent on the other. Mr. Sandridge, this is the exact kind of rhetoric that Bill Simmons and others pushed to get white people to fear black people; hawking violence for votes is the tired and disgusting rhetoric of the Willie Horton-scientific racist crowd. What’s kind of lovely about the Sandridge throwback to a darker past has been the response, though. People of all races on both sides of the county line have spoken out against his hateful campaign ad. And some unexpected voices called it for what it sure did look like: racist. And I’m not talking about the usual “liberal” suspects. Ward 1 Councilman Quentin Whitwell, a young white Republican, didn’t mince words. The ad was racist, he said, with-

out any apparent hesitation. Now, understand that Whitwell holds a seat that is known to appeal to white conservatives, many of whom send their kids to seg academies, and one even apologized on the JFP website a few years back for campaigning in front of the Council of Conservative Citizens. Is Whitwell an anomaly? No. This kind of wink-wink race politics is not appealing to most younger folks, conservative or liberal or whatever. They’re just not into it, and as Whitwell proved—bless his heart on this one—they’ll call you out on it. So this is the Jackson the Freedom Riders will revisit this month. We’re not there, yet, folks, but we are a diligent work-inprogress. Riders, we pledge to blow your minds with our open ease with talking about race problems in Jackson and in our multiracial alliances that we have formed to make our city and state a place we can all be proud of. And we may still have small-minded bigotry—not quite as blatant as y’all experienced—but we also have white people, plenty of them, willing to call it out. Most important, you visit a city this time that welcomes you and thanks you for everything you did for us when you put your lives on the line and a mirror in front of the South. Thank you, Riders, and may God bless you all.

Ronni Mott

ShaWanda Jacome

Todd Stauffer

Valerie Wells

Ronni Mott came to Jackson by way of D.C. in 1997. She’s a writer, photographer and the JFP’s managing editor, where she practices her hobbies of herding cats and curmudgeonliness. She teaches yoga in her spare time.

Assistant to the editor ShaWanda Jacome is a mother, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a friend and a Christ-follower. She is learning to “be still and to let God be God” (Psalm 46:10).

Publisher Todd Stauffer is the author of more than 40 technology books on Macs, HTML, blogging and digital video. He grew up in Dallas and is a Texas A&M graduate.

Valerie Wells is assistant editor of the JFP and BOOM Jackson. She’s interested in covering the media in Mississippi and figuring out who controls the news. Email ideas to Valerie@


news, culture & irreverence

Thursday, May 12 NASA releases satellite images of the Mississippi River to show a clearer picture of the flood’s magnitude. … Regulators announce recent inspections have found serious problems with emergency equipment in American nuclear plants. Friday, May 13 U.S. natural gas rigs drop to the lowest level in 15 months, reports Baker Hughes, Inc., an oilfield services company. The flooding of the Mississippi River may also reduce oil and gas output. … U.S. Middle East Envoy George Mitchell resigns from his post as a mediator between Israel and Palestine after two years of failed efforts. Saturday, May 14 Arts Alive! takes place in Smith Park in downtown Jackson to raise money for Stewpot Community Services. … President Barack Obama calls on Congress to shorten oil and gas leases on public lands and waters, and toughen penalties for companies out of compliance with environmental and safety regulations. Sunday, May 15 FIGMENT Jackson, a participatory art event, takes place at The Plant on Highway 80. … AT&T announces that many of its customers’ cell-phone models will be obsolete as of today due to recent network upgrades.

May 18 - 24, 2011

Monday, May 16 The documentary “Freedom Riders: American Experience” premiers on Mississippi Public Broadcasting. … President Obama meets with families in Memphis, Tenn., affected by the Mississippi River flooding.


Tuesday, May 17 Four journalists, whom Libyan officials have detained since early April, are scheduled for release after a judge rules in their favor. … The U.S. Supreme Court denies a stay of execution for Mississippi death row inmate Rodney Gray, making him the second man Mississippi has put to death this year. Get daily news updates at

In May 1961, after Klansmen bombed a bus containing the Freedom Riders in Anniston, Ala., a 12-year-old girl named Janie Miller helped the victims by providing them water. After receiving threats for her act of kindness, Miller and her family were forced to move.

Bridging Sandridge’s Divide

by Lacey McLaughlin

ty from Madison County. The camera then stops on Sandridge. “Imagine for a moment this road was our county line,” the ad’s narrator says. “This side represents one of the most violent cities in the nation. Over here, on our side, one of the most desirable communities in America to raise a family. And there’s one candidate Jimmy Houston, former Ridgeland police chief and for Madison County sheriff candidate for Madison County sheriff, says crimes don’t that intends to keep it that occur just on one side of a road. way: Mark Sandridge.” Sandridge issued a statealco Grandview Theatre may not ment May 10 defending the ad. be running Mark Sandridge’s “For me to ignore the indisputable controversial campaign ad for facts of an overwhelming level of crime in a Madison County Sheriff any- neighboring county would be, professionmore, but his message has spurred debates ally speaking, irresponsible. I will not abanabout Jackson stereotypes and the respon- don my promise to Madison County voters sibility of law enforcement officials to unite to keep criminals out of our county, before the metro area. they can commit crimes in our county,” On May 10, Malco pulled the ad after Sandridge wrote without citing his crime residents of Hinds and Madison counties statistic sources. spoke out against it. Citizens made their Memphis-based Malco Theatres Didispleasure known through social-media rector of Marketing Karen Scott said the sites such as Facebook, and by calling the company requested that Malco Grandview local theater and its corporate office. remove the ad because screening political The ad showed an unspecified high- ads was against corporate policy. way, indicative of the small divide that sep- Screenvision, a third-party national arates the city of Jackson and Hinds Coun- media company specializing in cinema ad-

File Photo

Wednesday, May 11 Officials announce that they expect the Mississippi River to break the all-time flood record of 1927. … A federal jury in New York City finds billionaire investor Raj Rajaratnam guilty of insider trading on Wall Street.

Objections to using a new lethal injection drug come too late for Rodney Gray. p 10


vertising, secures advertising contracts with Malco Theatres and pre-screens ads. The advertisements that appear before feature movies are part of a 25-minute prepackaged program delivered directly to theaters from Screenvision’s server. Screenvision’s website (www.screenvision. com) provides guidelines for advertising, and politics is on its list of 38 kinds of content deemed “inappropriate,” along with religion, fighting and “comedic bodily noises.” Screenvision representatives did not return calls for this article. As of May 11, Sandridge had raised $8,130 in total campaign contributions. His campaign-finance report shows payments to Screenvision for $450. The campaign’s disbursements do not show any payments to filmmakers or producers. Former Ridgeland Police Chief Jimmy Houston, who left that position earlier this year, spent 24 years as a Jackson Police Department officer. He noted a recent attempted burglary in Madison County in which the offender was from Mobile, Ala. “I guess we need to think about closing Highway 49 then, too,” Houston quipped. Houston, who is running for Madison County Sheriff, said crime does not just stop or end on one side of the road. “The saddest part about the whole ad is (that it) would sure be nice if crime was relegated to just one street,” he said. DIVIDE, see page 7

by Amelia Senter and Jordan Lashley


“What cause would you go to jail for?” “I would go to jail for my family. I would go to jail for injustice that I’m seeing in plain view, in plain sight.” —Kali Horner, age 30 “I’ve almost been to jail for the rights of the homeless, advocacy groups and also workers’ rights. (I would make) pretty much any of the same stances the Freedom Riders made as far as any racial discrimination, or anything where people were being oppressed or taken advantage of.” —Drew Mellon, age 28 “I would go to jail for children’s rights.” —LeeAnn May, age 24

“I guess we need to think about closing Highway 49 then, too.” —Jimmy Houston, candidate for Madison County sheriff, regarding his opponent Mark Sandridge’s political ad, which implied that County Line Road separates Madison County from Jackson’s “violent” crime.

“The two areas would be: religious freedom and … basic civil liberties just like the Freedom Riders dealt with. If society or the government starts to consign certain people to the status of non-being or ‘nothing,’ it’s just a matter of time before it’s genocide.” —John Farrar, age 62 “I would go to jail for religious freedom or religious tolerance.” —Isoke Washington, age 21


news, culture & irreverence

DIVIDE, from page 6

“To segregate the cities from one another with a statement like that, I think it shows inexperience.” Houston said that law enforcement officials must communicate with each other to stop crimes that cross county lines. He added that he’s seen progress with JPD in the past few years. “I am seeing more interest in crime and that’s our job,” Houston said. “Officers are doing more. It’s because of good leadership that it’s turning a corner. … So goes Jackson so goes the rest of the metro.” Jackson’s Ward 1 Councilman Quentin Whitwell called the ad “racist.” He also took issue with the ad claiming that Sandridge intended to keep things the same. “The image it created was offensive as well as the wording,” he said. “After degrading one side of the county and saying you

plan to keep it that way is to infer that one tends to keep the neighboring county that way and turn a blind eye to problems in their own county.” Whitwell said the solution is not to “turn a blind eye” to crime, but work proactively with local law enforcement to find solutions. Tyrone Lewis, a former JPD deputy sheriff who retired last year and a candidate for Hinds County sheriff, said he could not comment on the ad, but did say if he was elected that we would ensure that metro law enforcement had good working relations. Hinds County Sheriff Malcolm McMillin, who is running for his fifth term in office, declined to comment. Sandridge did not return multiple calls for comment. Comment at

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.

Join us. For our city. For our children. For our future.

Council Battles Over Zoning

Ratliff Fabricating will not be able to expand under new zoning.


ackson City Council members agonized over how to classify newly annexed city territory during a lengthy zoning meeting Monday. Several zoning issues stymied zoning committee Council members, including a request by city business owners to retain an industrial-zoning classification for the territory around a south Jackson insulation manufacturing company. A majority refused to preserve the industrial-zone classification for the area around Mechanical Systems Insulation, on Mississippi Highway 18, after Council members discussed whether the classification would permit strip clubs. Ward 1 Councilman Quentin Whitwell and Ward 2 Councilman Chokwe Lumumba were the only members who favored maintaining the industrial zone classification on that portion of Mississippi 18. Legally, the pre-existing factories must be grandfathered in, meaning the council cannot change the zone classification of factory-owned property. But Mechanical Systems Insulation owners Virgil and Jean Campbell cannot expand their factory

into the newly designated mixed-use territory around them. Nobody will buy their factory as long as it sits in the middle of a mixed-use zone, they claim. “The folks had a very good case in that their life savings and their nest egg is in that piece of property, and that by rezoning that area we essentially ruined their retirement plan,” Whitwell said. “That’s very tragic in my opinion.” On a second vote, a majority of the committee—this time including Lumumba—refused to maintain an industrial zone for a recently annexed portion of property containing factories on Clay Street, between U.S. Highway 49 and Interstate 220. Clay Street has been an industrial zone for decades. Ratliff Fabricating owner Spincer Harrell said his company generates almost $2 million in annual revenue and pays the city more than $20,000 in annual property taxes. Harrell said the zone change around his property, similar to the Mechanical Systems Insulation issue, will mean his company will have no room for growth. “It’s like the city treats me as some kind of enemy,” Harrell said. “We’re successful. We make money. I don’t understand why they want to kill what I consider to be a golden goose.” Lumumba, who presides over the ward containing Harrell’s business, said he voted to change the zone for the benefit of the factory’s residential neighbors. He added that it would not run Ratliff Fabricating out of business. Whitwell was not so confident: “We’re not a suburb. We’re a city that has a history of certain businesses operating in areas with residents, and as a result they sometime grow to abut one another, but they tend to coexist.”

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an estimated federal cost of $56 million and an estimated cost of $24 million for the local sponsor. The federal government even went so far as to pay its portion, with President Reagan signing the Water Resources Development Act authorizing the Shoccoe Dry Dam in 1986. Some former USACE members consider the dam to be the best project on hand. “In my opinion, it was the most viable option for preventing flooding in Jackson,” said Tom Pullen, a U.S. Army Corps of EngiAdam Lynch

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s the waters of the Mississippi River creep to a historic high, lapping at Vicksburg’s ankles, some local residents are getting nervous about how long the city of Jackson has before it suffers the next round of its own flooding. “What will the Mississippi flood have to do with us?” Gary Rhoads, Rankin-Hinds Pearl River Flood and Drainage Control District Board chairman, asked of engineers at the May 9 Levee Board meeting. The answer is that the water swelling the Mississippi River does not share the much smaller drainage basin of the Pearl River, and is not a threat. Nevertheless, in 1979, the waters of the Pearl, swelling from the run-off of a host of storms north of Jackson, topped levees between Hinds and Rankin counties and inundated the downtown area and neighborhoods in the river’s historic floodplain. Members of the Levee Board, charged with handling flood control along the Pearl, are moving into position to begin a feasibility study on a flood-control plan that may involve a combination of a levee expansion and water-retaining lakes along the Pearl, but the estimated $4 million study is only the beginning, as local sponsors will have to tweak their plan through the process of federal review. Their most recent endeavor, the Lower Lake Plan, is the latest survivor of five floodcontrol incarnations that bit the dust from lack of funding or support. The jury is still out on the cost of this most recent project, although the price could be anywhere between $200 million and $600 million, according to Levee Board members. The price depends on new expense requirements imposed by the National Environmental Policy Act process, through which the plan must pass before the feds will commit to co-financing. Out of all four previous plans, only one actually survived the federal government’s scrutiny. In 1984, the Corps jumped behind the construction of a dry dam near Carthage, Miss., as the most comprehensive flood-control option for the Pearl. A Corps report, dated March 17, 1986, said the total cost of the Shoccoe dam would be $80.1 million, with

This swamp sits near the proposed site of a dry dam that advocates say is still the most feasible solution for a Jackson flood plan.

neers retiree, whose Vicksburg branch peer-reviewed the Shoccoe project. “It wouldn’t have been perfect, but it would’ve prevented most of the floods that hurt Jackson.” The project involved creating a dry dam near Carthage that would only kick in and act like a dam when a 1979-style body of water was on its way to Jackson. The dam would close and create a massive, temporary 38,850-acre lake on forest and farmland in Leake, Madison and Scott counties that would’ve otherwise occupied the city of Jackson. The problem with the Shoccoe dam, however, was with area property owners. Pullen said the Corps would purchase an easement from landowners that would allow the government to flood the land, but that landowners would still own their land and could use it, so long as it was compatible with the levee. Most of the flooding was in forest,

meaning many of the growers affected were wood producers like the powerful International Paper Company, which Pullen said owned property in the area. “They would’ve been paid an amount almost equal to the land, but they’d still own it. But it would still be a problem for them because of the chance of infrequent floods,” Pullen said. “… Only a small part ... would be under government ownership.” Mississippi Sierra Club Director Louie Miller, who owns property that Shoccoe would affect, describes the set-up differently. “The Corps said, ‘We’ll pay you 20 cents on the dollar for a flood easement, but in the meantime, any structures on your property for human habitation would have to be removed at your expense.’ Anybody versed in eminentdomain proceedings said they’re taking away the economic value of your property,” Miller said last year. “Your property can’t be used for anything else but a flood pool. So they’re going to have to buy the title to your property. That increased the price tag of the project by about another $100 million.” Opponents to the Shoccoe project, including Rep. Bennett Malone, D-Carthage, and International Paper Company, managed to discourage the popularity of the local cost share of the project, despite the federal government’s backing. The Shoccoe Dam died in 1987, one year after Reagan’s signature, when the Mississippi Legislature voted down legislation authorizing the Pearl River Basin Development District to serve as the local sponsor for the project. Being the only project that has so far survived the NEPA process, however, the dam could see life again. All it needs is the backing of a local sponsor with the will to move it forward. “It could live again, but it’s been so long that they would have to update the NEPA process, probably with a supplement to the environmental impact statement,” Pullen said. “Either way, that was the only real solution we’ve come up with since 1979.” Comment at

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Bracing for Destruction potential flooding. Richmond is a municipality conjoined to Tallulah, the two towns share a post office and zip code. The two towns flow together seamlessly, but are in fact separate municipalities with separate governments. Kivett said that Madison Parish, where the towns are located, have an extensive evacuation plan and warning network of more than 100 police cars to go out into the rural areas and warn of the impending flood The rising Mississippi River is threatening the towns of waters should the levees break. Tallulah, La., and Richmond, La., in Madison Parish. If the levee should break 20 miles south of Tallulah at a place called the K.C. Ranch, residents of the parish His prediction will be tested on May 19 would have three to four days to evacuate. If when the river is expected to crest. The Collins brothers, like other farmers it breaks north, they would have much less in the area, have taken steps to minimize the time. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has damage to their operation should the worst continuously updated the levee from Lake happen. They moved much of their equipProvidence, La., to K.C. Ranch over the ment to higher ground on an abandoned decades. The exit route from Tallulah and levy south of Tallulah, but the farm continRichmond would be west toward Monroe. ues day-to-day activities as if nothing out of Civil defense shelters would be activated in the ordinary is happening. “We’re still farming, just like the river’s Richmond and Tallulah at the civic centers. National Guardsmen would barricade the at 19 feet. We can’t just pack up and leave shelters from the flooding and bring in food. everything,” Dave Collins said. At this point, only several feet of water Although the Collins have crop inare expected should the worst happen, but surance, like most farmers in the area, the with waters rushing down from the north insurance would not cover a total loss of and rain expected, those estimates could their crop for the year. And total crop loss grow. The main concern, according to would not even be the worst issue: A flood Kivett, is that the levees were not designed could cover the entire area of fertile ground to sustain this water level for an extended surrounding Tallulah with layers and layers period of time. The state government has of sand. This would necessitate rolling the also reported concern about the speed with ground with heavy equipment and tilling it which the water will be moving through the to bring the topsoil back up—at great exarea as it passes near the town. pense to the farmers. Jason Trichell, 5th Louisiana Levee Dis- Collins is matter of fact about what he trict superintendent of operations, said that and other area farmers face. the levy is expected to hold, and that resi- “The land is going to get farmed,” dents should not be concerned about sand he said. “Farmland is going to be farmed, boils that occur when water seeps beneath whether you do it or somebody else does it. the levy. This process is expected and nor- No matter what.” mal. By all accounts, the levee system sur- Freelance writer Tim Roberson grew up in rounding the area will keep back the waters. the Tallulah, La., area.

Tim Roberson


ave Collins of Collins Farms in Tallulah, La., sits in his office, staring across his desk at his older brother Curt Collins who sits in a broad blue sofa, holding a phone to his ear. “Well, are you hurt?” Curt asks his caller. He sighs deeply and looks across at Dave. It seems one of their fertilizer trucks turned over into a ditch on its way back to Tallulah from Yazoo City. “Just what we need on top of everything else,” Dave says with resignation. The “everything else” he’s referring to is the rising Mississippi River threatening to flood into the surrounding Delta farmland and destroy what promises to be an amazing yearly crop for the Collins’ and many other farmers in the area. Tallulah is a small community nestled among the curving, levied banks of the Mississippi, a short drive across the river bridge from Vicksburg. Because of a heavy reliance on the surrounding farmland as their main industry, the residents of Tallulah are facing a crisis not seen since 1927. The floodwaters are coming, and as the Mississippi River continues to swell, the citizens of Tallulah brace for destruction on a scale not seen in many of their lifetimes. In 1927, the residents of the area experienced what was the last great flood for the area. Then, as now, the river waters threatened, but the levee systems were rudimentary and only built by the farmers to protect what little land they farmed, says Geneva Williams, coordinator of the Hermione House, the local Madison Parish museum. As the waters rose higher, and the levees began to overtop, local officials made the decision to cut the levee at a plantation north of Tallulah called Cabin Teal. This allowed the floodwaters to invade the town from the north. Williams recounts that the town was greatly submerged, but the citizens persevered and the town recovered. Richmond, La., Mayor Robert Kivett has been privy to the meetings with Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and officials from the Department of Homeland Security concerning the

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ACLU of MS is proud to support the

50th Anniversary of the Freedom Riders. Your contribution changed the world.

Thank You

Are you a card-carrying member of the ACLU? Join us as we take the lead in some of the most important civil rights battles of our time:

May 18 - 24, 2011

• Over Incarceration • Unchecked Government Spying • Reproductive Justice • The School to Prison Pipeline • Felony Dis-franchisement • Violence/Discrimination against LGBTQ individuals, • Discrimination against People living with HIV/AIDS


If any of these issues are important to you, contact us to see how you can get involved at 601-354-3408,,

Inmates (left to right) Benny Joe Stevens, Rodney Gray and Robert Simon sued the state over a change to its lethal-injection drugs. Stevens was executed May 10, Gray was executed May 17, and Simon, too, will likely die before seeing the outcome of his case.


nce the drugs started to flow, it took only a minute for Benny Joe Stevens’ lips to stop moving. He slipped out of consciousness, and soon his heart stopped. At 6:22 p.m. on May 10, the 52-yearold man from Marion County—who had finally admitted to killing four people in 1998—became the first person the state of Mississippi executed this year. Stevens’ death was a procedure much like the nine other executions by lethal injection that the state has conducted since 2002, with one exception. The first drug to flow through Stevens’ veins, pentobarbital—the one that rendered him unconscious—was a replacement in the threedrug cocktail used to execute inmates. Pentobarbital, a barbiturate anesthetic, replaced another drug, sodium thiopental, which had been the standard anesthetic used in lethal injections across the country. In January, however, Hospira, the only American supplier of sodium thiopental, announced that it would stop manufacturing the drug. Left in the lurch, corrections departments across the country scrambled to find a new anesthetic to use in executions. Like many states, Mississippi settled on pentobarbital. A pair of advocacy organizations is challenging that decision, though. Mississippians Educating for Smart Justice, an anti-death-penalty group, and Mississippi Cure, a criminal-justice reform organization, filed a lawsuit against MDOC on April 14 arguing that the state failed to follow its own legal requirements for providing public notice when changing the combination of lethal-injection drugs. Along with the two organizations, three death-row inmates with impending execution dates also signed onto the lawsuit: Stevens, Rodney Gray—whose execution was Tuesday, May 17—and Robert Simon, scheduled for a May 21 execution. The state’s Administrative Procedures Law requires state agencies to publish any proposed changes to their procedures in a bulletin from the Secretary of State’s office for 25 days before adopting the rule change. If they are successful, MESJ and

Mississippi Cure would only be able to delay the change for those 25 days. The groups suffered an early defeat last month when Hinds County Circuit Judge Bill Gowan ruled against their suit. They then filed the suit in the Mississippi Supreme Court, asking for a temporary stay of any impending executions. The Supreme Court denied the temporary stay, denying the possibility of a temporary reprieve for Stevens, Gray or Simon. Jackson attorney David McCarty, who filed the lawsuit, said one of the reasons MESJ and Mississippi Cure listed themselves as parties to the suit was to ensure that there would be surviving plaintiffs when the Supreme Court finally hears the case. “We can win the civil suit, and it will not have helped Mr. Simon or Mr. Gray or certainly not Mr. Stevens,” McCarty said. “It’s one of the reasons why we included other citizen groups. We were worried that, to be perfectly grisly, we might run out of plaintiffs. Now, there are other people we think will have standing to request to intervene in our lawsuit, and there are other public interest groups that have expressed interest in joining the lawsuit.” In circuit court, attorneys for the state argued that MDOC’s death-penalty procedures qualified for an exception in the state law, which excludes rules “directly related only to inmates of a correctional or detention facility” from the publicnotice requirement. McCarty rejected that contention, however, saying that executions affect prison staff, families of the victim and the condemned, as well as the taxpayers whose money funds the execution. “At the very least the death penalty impacts every person in the state of Mississippi,” McCarty said. “It’s the highest exercise of the state’s power to execute a citizen. … It goes further: The taxpayers pay for this procedure, and it costs thousands and thousands of dollars. So to say that this somehow only affects the people being executed and doesn’t affect anyone else in the state, I think is beyond ludicrous.” Comment at


by Ward Schaefer

File Photo

Un-gifting JPS

Gifted education in Jackson Public Schools has shrunk to the bare minimum due to state budget cuts.The district says this will save teachers’ jobs.


tate budget cuts are forcing Jackson Public Schools to scale back its gifted-education classes to the bare minimum required by state law. With their emphasis on hands-on learning and critical thinking, classes for “gifted” students are among the highlights of any school district. As Jackson Public Schools has discovered, along with districts across the state, those classes are gifts themselves,

dependent on state education funding. State law requires districts to provide special classes to students designated “intellectually gifted” in grades two through six. For years, JPS has offered gifted classes beyond that basic requirement, though, into seventh and eighth grade and for each of the four years of high school. Starting in the 2009-2010 school year, cuts to the state education budget have

forced JPS to roll back its gifted offerings. The district eliminated the seventh- and eighth-grade gifted programs at all middle schools except one, Blackburn Middle School near Jackson State University. It also limited high-school gifted offerings only to Forest Hill High School. Now, with Blackburn poised to move into a brand-new building next year, the school’s gifted program is also getting cut back to the bare-bones requirement of sixth grade only. Forest Hill’s ninth-grade through 12th-grade gifted classes are also on the chopping block. Vicki Davidson, director of the district’s Office of Advanced Academics, said that the reductions were necessary to save teaching jobs after the state Department of Education reduced funding for gifted-education teachers. “For the upcoming school year, we were funded at a reduced level, which means essentially that if we want to save jobs, we have to no longer offer those services at those two sites,” Davidson said. “In order to secure jobs for our full-time gifted education teachers, we can no longer offer programs at those two sites.” JPS is doing all it can to retain its gifted-education teachers, Davidson said. Often, teachers of gifted classes are also

leaders of extracurricular activities and coaches on academic teams like quiz bowl, said Susan Womack, executive director of Parents for Public Schools of Greater Jackson. “Everybody stands a chance of losing if those teachers go away, Womack said. In fact, the district’s decision to preserve Blackburn’s seventh- and eighth-grade gifted classes for the past two years was, in part, recognition of the special role that the school’s gifted teacher, Bridget Harkins, plays there. In a statement, Davidson said that Harkins “is a pivotal part of the school’s leadership team” and helped plan the move to a new building. When state funding loosens up again, JPS will return gifted programs to middle schools and high schools, Davidson said. In December 2009, the school board adopted a policy stating its intention to provide gifted programs beyond sixth grade “based on the availability of program funding.” Offering gifted classes in more grades is a worthy goal, Womack said, but an even greater one would be to apply the curriculum and teaching techniques of gifted classes to all students. “All children should be taught like gifted children,” Womack said.

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jfp op/ed

opining, grousing & pontificating


A Newspaper Is Born


ever in the history of journalism, as we know it in the State of Mississippi, has any newspaper from its inception had such bold aims and purity of purpose as the MISSISSIPPI FREE PRESS. This is a Mississippi paper and a free paper. ... This newspaper holds certain beliefs that are characteristic of free Americans. We believe that all men should be free—no man a slave. We believe in freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom of movement, and freedom from intimidation. These, among others, are the rights of all Mississippians, regardless of creed, color or religion. The MISSISSIPPI FREE PRESS dedicates itself to helping to maintain these freedoms. But even more important, the MISSISSIPPI FREE PRESS makes a pledge of helping to secure these rights for those Mississippians who have been denied them. This newspaper will at all times champion the cause of justice. It will fight injustice. It will take no backward steps. Much will be written in the future in the MISSISSIPPI FREE PRESS about the problems of this State—and we have many. We will not hesitate in offering constructive criticism. We very definitely will have our say about our state’s fiscal policies, about our schools, about teachers’ salaries, about reapportionment, about voting and registration, and about desegregation. We urge all our leaders to take an active part in bringing about the redeemed community, a community in which men might live together in peace and harmony. This might be done by each citizen of Mississippi: 1. Putting forth an extra effort to respect the person and property of others. 2. Constantly reminding ourselves that we are only free to do those things which do not abridge the freedom of others. 3. Realizing that no matter how disrespectful an individual might become, this person is sacred because he is a creation of God and must be treated as such. 4. Using his influence to bring others in to the struggle for human dignity. In order that we might better serve and meet the needs of all the people of Mississippi, we encourage you to write letters of constructive criticism to the editor and to present plans by which we can work together to improve any given problem within our state. This editorial appeared on page of the first issue of the Mississippi Free Press on Dec. 16, 1961. The MFP was based in Jackson and produced and printed by a multiracial group of Mississippians. The Jackson Free Press, which launched Sept. 22, 2002, is named for the Mississippi Free Press, which ceased publication in 1973.


My Dog Bites Booty


May 18 - 24, 2011

r. Announcement: “This is your Operation Corporate Backlash Crime Watch Report News Brief, brought to you by the Association of Gated Communities and the My Dog Bites Booty Home Security Pre-emptive Strike Security System. The MDBB system comes complete with vicious pre-emptive strike attack dog, ‘My Dog Bites Booty’ warning sign and complimentary Dick Cheney autographed double-barrel shotgun (just in case the strike dog does not strike). “The Crime Watch Report News Brief is your source for information on suspicious individuals and activities in desirable suburban communities. Here’s your Crime Watch News Brief reporter, I. M. Scared.” I.M. Scared: “In today’s Crime Watch News, the Cootie Creek County board of directors unanimously passed the ‘Get out of Town by Sundown’ curfew law. This law enables law enforcement officers and security personnel to deter possible criminal activity by enforcing a curfew time (preferably sundown) for individuals who live outside of Cootie Creek County. “The law requires domestic workers, gardeners and other service staff from crime-ridden urban areas to show proper identification before entering Cootie Creek County during the day. After sundown, ‘outsiders’ must ‘get out of town.’ Failure to obey the curfew law will result in arrest, severe beat down or suspended work privileges. “‘We had to pass this law to maintain law and order within the boundaries of our safe and desirable community,’ said an anonymous Cootie Creek County board member. “This has been your Crime Watch News Brief for today. Remember: Be 12 careful out there.”


Noise from the blogs

Sheriff Candidate Bashes Jackson in Disturbing Ad We saw this at the movies over the weekend and were horrified. Jackson may have its problems (who doesn’t?), but I’d move if Mark Sandridge lived on my side of the street. —Deirdra Harris Glover

don’t have a theater in Hinds but that’s OK. Send a message with the pocket book, and don’t go to a movie there. Let’s post on our FB pages and twitter. Ready? Go! —Langston Moore

I am so tired of this “us vs. them,” smallminded, bigoted mindset. What’s he going to do? Build a concrete wall to separate Madison County from Hinds? What an idiot. Especially when so many of the high-priced lawyers, doctors and business people who live in Madison work in Jackson in its courts, hospitals and offices. And where do they go for entertainment? Thalia Mara hall, the museums, the zoo ... all in Jackson. When are people going to learn that we all sink or swim together? —Ronni_Mott

He’s not what this Madison County resident wants. I sent an email to the man’s campaign website, letting them know I had considered voting for him and would definitely not be doing it now, thanks to this ad. If he wins with this type of message, how can he effectively work with JPD and Hinds law enforcement? There are plenty of criminals living in Madison County, and this type of thinking makes it a lot easier for those criminals to get away with it. —lls32001

Whether you like it or not … this fella is exactly what Madison residents want! They’ve not tried to keep it a secret. Those of us who really care about Jackson have been screaming their attitude to the top of our lungs but have been redirected by others who say we “have to work together.” Madison isn’t interested in “working together.” Every opportunity they get—on websites and media outlets—they are digging into the pulse of Jackson and spitting in our faces. They are bold and consistent. They don’t want anything to do with Jacksonian “thugs and criminals.” … Sarcasm off. —Queen601 If you have movie plans this week or weekend, go to Rankin County. It’s unfortunate we

I am adamantly opposed to attempts to paint any group (whether Madison Countians or Jacksonians) with the same brush, because that’s just as ignorant, but they do need to speak out against this if they care about living in a strong metro. This is divisive. We all need to speak out against these kinds of divisiveness. We all sink or swim together. The sooner we realize, the sooner our city, metro and state will get up off the bottom. And Malco needs to stop running that ad. It’s got to be bad for their business. I know the company isn’t a Mississippi company, but it’s based in Memphis, not China. They must realize that it is irresponsible to make money-goers pay to sit through something that bashes their home city. —Donna Ladd

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James L. Dickerson

Civil Rights Ainâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t Just History

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is a self-inflicted limitation that the rest of the world marvels at. People wonder why Mississippians continue to shoot themselves in the foot, content to be No. 1 in most major illnesses, obesity, mental illness and poverty. My final years at Ole Miss overlapped with those of Gov. Haley Barbour. I have written before that I played in a rock â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;nâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; roll band and recall performing at Barbourâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s SAE frat house, where I witnessed him dancing the night away with a dance style that was similar to what a fire hydrant would look like if hurricane-force winds made it teeter back and forth. An unrepentant party animal, he was director of social affairs for the Associated Student Body and chairman of the concert committee, which I naturally paid a lot of attention to. That was one side of him. But I also recall a different Haley Barbour. When he ran for ASP president in 1968 as a progressive, the student newspaper, The Mississippian, quoted him as saying his platform was â&#x20AC;&#x153;to change the now unprogressive attitudes of most administrators. â&#x20AC;Ś Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s my feeling that the university has suffered from student apathy, which is caused by the ASBâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s doing little with which the average student can identify.â&#x20AC;? Perhaps indicative of Ole Miss in 1968 was a news story that bumped against Barbourâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s election announcement in The Mississippian and competed for a shallow news hole. Under the headline â&#x20AC;&#x153;Hisses trump Ace,â&#x20AC;? the newspaper reported that Ace Carter, a speech writer for segregationist presidential candidate George Wallace, was heckled and hissed by Ole Miss students during a Q&A following a speech in which Carter said â&#x20AC;&#x153;the recent centralization of powers in the federal government, along with increased suppression of statesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; rights, is very compatible to the communist philosophy.â&#x20AC;? Barbour left Ole Miss for a semester to work in Richard Nixonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s presidential campaign, perhaps feeling that Nixon was a flaming liberal compared to George Wallace. Indeed, 1968â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Nixon would be considered too liberal by todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s standards for him to qualify to be a Republican. The point in telling you that story is to remind you that humans are complicated. Now that he has returned to his progressive roots, I would like to see the governor finish what he started with the civil rights museum and shepherd the bond issue through to completion before he leaves office. Who knows? Later, if retirement gets to be a drag, he might want to volunteer as social chairman for the proposed all-star concerts to benefit the museum. James L. Dickerson is co-author of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Devilâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Sanctuary: An Eyewitness History of Mississippi Hate Crimesâ&#x20AC;? and a former editorial writer for The Commercial Appeal in Memphis, Tenn.











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Editor in Chief Donna Ladd Publisher Todd Stauffer

ov. Haley Barbour did the right thing by lobbying for a civil-rights museum. Now he needs to double-down and use his influence to recruit like-minded people to launch a bi-partisan, bi-racial, non-profit foundation to raise money to furnish and sustain the museum. Certainly, I would be willing to donate photos, taped interviews and FBI files; solicit funding from private sources; and use my grant-writing talents to obtain funds. I canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t speak for the following individuals, but I would be surprised if they declined an invitation to contribute time or money for the project: Donna Ladd and Todd Stauffer at the Jackson Free Press, Hodding Carter III, Morgan Freeman, John Grisham, David Hampton at The Clarion-Ledger, former Gov. William Winter, former Secretary of State Dick Molpus, Jackson attorney Alex A. Alston, Oprah Winfrey, Fred Carl at Viking, and the list goes on and on. There are a few celebrity Mississippians that I do not think would say no to requests to perform benefit concerts for the museumâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;Faith Hill, Lance Bass, B.B. King, Britney Spears, LeAnn Rimes, Marty Stuart, Jimmy Buffet, Charley Pride and Bobbie Gentry (she would be a big draw, even though she has not performed â&#x20AC;&#x153;Ode to Billie Joeâ&#x20AC;? in many years), to name a few. Mississippiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s lack of a museum provides a stark contrast to the activity that has occurred in Alabama, where the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, the Civil Rights Museum and Trail, and the National Voting Rights Museum have become major tourist attractions. Alabama State Tourism Director Lee Sentell is responsible for much of that success, largely by promoting the civil-rights sites with a Civil Rights Trail brochure that provides visitors an in-depth guide to places they can tour. Mississippi needs a tourism initiative that gets across the message that â&#x20AC;&#x153;Civil rights ainâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t just history.â&#x20AC;? Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m not serious about using the word â&#x20AC;&#x153;ainâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t,â&#x20AC;? but you probably get the message. The state needs a museum that is aligned with a trail that will allow the stateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s civil rights history to be interactive. This stateâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s museum needs to not only present a historical perspective on Mississippiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s struggles, but also depict civil rights as a living, breathing challenge that still requires dedicated foot soldiers. Civil rights issues are our future, not just our past. It is true that Mississippi has more black elected officials than any other state. But that is a deceptive statistic as those officials represent majority black districts. The truth is that Mississippi has not elected an African American to statewide office since Reconstruction, a time during which all women and white men who fought in the war were prohibited from voting. Not until Mississippians elect blacks to statewide offices on a regular basis will the state ever be able to prosper economically. It



Freedom Rides Again Their Story, 50 Years Later by Dylan Watson


May 18 - 24, 2011

ank Thomas walked up the steps of the Greyhound bus on a sunny day May 4, 1961. As he calmly surveyed its drab, blue-gray interior, the lanky 19-year-old black student from Howard University had no idea that in about two weeks he would come dangerously close to meeting his maker on its floor. He wasn’t prepared for the violence, Thomas says now. “I’m pretty sure there were some folks who had been in some civil-rights activities before, and I know there were those, and they may have (been prepared),” he says. The Congress of Racial Equality, known as CORE, organized the Freedom Rides to test the recent Supreme Court decision, Boynton v. Virginia. The decision made racial segregation in interstate bus stations, restaurants, bathrooms and buses illegal. CORE’s plan was to make sure the decision was being enforced by riding buses through Virginia, the Carolinas, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and end with a rally in New Orleans. Seven blacks and six whites made up the group. The black Riders would sit in the front, and the white Riders in the back. One interracial pair sat together. The exact formation would be determined the night before each ride in daily meetings. A couple of the Riders would sit in a segregated manner, so that they could bail out the other Riders if they were arrested. They would take two buses, a Greyhound and a Trailways. The group had recently completed a four-day non-violence training in Washington, D.C., where they learned how 14 to passively protect themselves and deal with potential physical

From May until November 1961, more than 400 black and white Americans risked their lives—and many endured savage beatings and imprisonment—to travel together on buses and trains as they journeyed through the Deep South.

altercations, of which there would be many. After leaving Washington, D.C., on May 4, they made their first stop in Richmond, Va. Some white onlookers jeered at the Riders, but there was no violence. This stop was one of the few that the Riders would later remember as uneventful. They stopped in six places before arriving in Charlotte, N.C. The black Riders walked into the white waiting room and met with no resistance. The Riders milled around the station, and just when it seemed that this stop would be as uneventful as the last, Charles Person, a muscular, taciturn Rider, decided that he needed to get his shoes shined. “You know you’re sitting on a bus, you’re getting on and off the bus, and your shoes get scuffed up a lot,” Person says. “As I was exiting the restroom, I saw the shoeshine man there. I asked him, you know, ‘Can I get a shoeshine’? He said, well, he couldn’t shine my shoes, and if I persisted I would be arrested.” Getting a shoeshine wasn’t one of the planned tests, so Person didn’t persist, but another Rider, Joe Perkins, decided that he would demand a shoeshine. Charlotte police officers arrested him when he persisted. With the exception of this setback, and some unpleasant expressions from white onlookers, the Riders experienced no serious problems at the Charlotte bus station. Things would get physical soon enough. N*gger, Get Out of This Car When the bus stopped in Winnsboro, S.C., John Lewis and Albert Bigelow were the first black Riders to get off the

bus and walk into the white waiting room, where the Riders’ first brush with violence took place. “They were accosted by several white toughs,” Person recalls. “They were punched, and they were roughed up pretty good. Before it got too bad, the local authorities came in and stopped it.” Shortly after the authorities gained control of the situation, Hank Thomas entered the terminal and sat down at a whites-only lunch counter, where local police arrested him. He was then escorted to their patrol car and taken downtown. After pulling into the parking lot, the two police officers led the handcuffed Thomas into the station and did something that, in hindsight, he realizes was quite strange: They took him directly to a jail cell without booking him. “As I remember back at the time, the fact that they didn’t fingerprint me, I thought that was weird,” Thomas says. They didn’t take a mug shot, fingerprints, or ask for any personal information. To this day, the Winnsboro Police Department has no record that Hank Thomas ever entered their station. That night, the police opened up his cell and said that they were going to take him for a ride. “Where am I going?” Thomas asked. “You want to leave? We’re going to take you to the bus station so you can leave,” one of the officers replied. The officers then put Thomas in the back of the patrol car again and headed back toward the bus station in the dark of the night. As the patrol car passed under the dim street lamps, Thomas could see the silhouette of the station in the distance

Courtesy MPB / Corbis

and knew something was wrong. “I could see it; all the lights in the station were out. A large crowd of white men were there around the bus station. It looked as though they’d been having a good time, been drinking, and I could see a few sticks and everything they had in their hands, and as the police car got perhaps within a half a block of the bus station, they stopped to let me out.” “Well, there’s the bus station,” the officer who was driving said after stopping the car. “You can go.” Aware of the danger that lurked outside the car, Thomas said, “Well, it looks like the bus station is closed. When will the next bus come?” The officers muttered something about having no idea about the bus schedule. “I can’t get out here. It looks pretty dangerous,” Thomas responded. “You wanted to go. You can go,” one of the officers said, becoming impatient. Thomas, determined to stay in the safety of the car, said that he was not going to get out. The police officer in the passenger’s seat then turned around, and while Thomas could barely make out his face in the darkness, he could see the glint of his pistol as the officer said, “N*gger, get out of this car.” “If I didn’t get out of the car, I figured he was going to shoot me, so I did, and as soon as I got out of the car, the police took off,” he remembers. And so on this cloudless night in May, Hank Thomas found himself on a dark street with an angry white mob only a stone’s throw away. “I had to make a quick decision,” Thomas says of that night. “Of course the crowd started running toward me, and I was a pretty athletic fellow at that particular time. You know, I knew I could probably outrun them. So I started to run.” Heart racing, Thomas took off sprinting in the other direction. He ran down one street and then down another, heading nowhere in particular. As he was sprinting down this second street, Thomas came across a bit of luck. A black man pulled up beside him in a car and said, “Son, get in and get down on the floor.” Thomas, happy to oblige, whipped open the door and immediately got down on the floorboard. “I was expecting to hear gunshots through the rear window at any minute,” he remembers. From that street in Winnsboro, the man drove him to Benedict College in Columbia, S.C., which is where the Riders’ next planned stop was. The Riders were already on their way to Atlanta, however, because they had only made a brief stop in Columbia. Thomas then took a bus by himself from Columbia to Sumter, N.C., to catch up with them. Three stops later in Atlanta, the Riders met with Martin Luther King Jr. and his father, Martin Luther King Sr., at their church, Ebenezer Baptist. The father and son, along with their

Freedom Riders John Lewis (left), now a U.S. Congressman from Georgia, and Jim Zwerg (right) are splattered with blood after being attacked and beaten in Montgomery, Ala., in May 1961. Zwerg is checking his teeth.

staff, warned the Riders that Alabama and Mississippi were different than the other states. “We were told that (Anniston, Ala.,) was a hotbed of Klan activity, and so it was not going to be a pleasant stop. We were aware of that,” Thomas says. ‘I’m Going to Die’ The Greyhound bus left an hour ahead of the Trailways, and the Riders on the first bus knew something was up soon after they crossed the Alabama state line. About an hour away from Anniston, another bus came into view, and its driver flagged down the driver of their bus. “They both got off their respective buses and talked for a few minutes, and then our bus driver (who was white) got back on, and he looked at us,” Thomas says. “I remember him having somewhat of a smirking smile on his face. Nobody said anything, and the bus was very, very quiet for the rest of the way.” After another hour of riding, the Anniston city limits sign came into view. The Riders, peering outside the bus as they drove into the city, realized that the downtown streets were completely empty, another ominous sign. As they turned down the road that led to the bus station,

they could see a mob of white men, many of them Klansmen, surrounding the terminal. “As the bus pulled into the station, they all surrounded the bus, yelling and screaming,” Thomas recalls. “I remember the bus driver getting off the bus and saying, ‘Look fellas, all I did was drive y’all here.’” The driver then got off the bus, but before he did, he locked the door from the inside. The white throng then started beating on the bus, but they couldn’t get inside. “I don’t know how long it was,” Thomas says. “It probably was not near as long as it seemed.” After this went on for several minutes, a different bus driver approached the locked door; he too found that he couldn’t get inside, so he went around to the driver’s side and unlocked it with a key. “As he tried to pull out, there were men in front of the bus. Several of them sat down in front of the bus, and as he lurched towards them I guess that’s when they moved to let the bus come past them,” Thomas says. The men moved, and the bus was out of the station area, but their problems were not over. see FREEDOM RIDERS, see page 16

Freedom Riders 50TH ANNIVERSARY Events

Day of Repentance for Slavery and Reconciliation May 21, 2 p.m., at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Cathedral (305 E. Capitol St.). The Episcopal Diocese of Mississippi sponsors the event. Visit Return of the Freedom Riders: 50th Anniversary Reunion May 22-26. More than 100 Freedom Riders and their families reunite and tell stories about the struggle to end segregation in American interstate travel in 1961. Visit for a detailed schedule. Register by May 18 for advance tickets; limited seating. $175, $100 Freedom Riders, $75 students, $70 one day May 23-26; call 601-979-1517.

Free public events include: • May 22, 4 p.m., Opening Public Reception and Program at Jackson Marriott (200 E. Amite St.) • May 23, 10 a.m., Interfaith Memorial Service at Tougaloo College, Woodworth Chapel (500 W. County Line Road, Tougaloo) • May 24: Freedom Trail Marker Dedication at Greyhound Bus Station (219 N. Lamar St.) at 11 a.m., the All People’s Program honoring the Freedom Riders at the original Trailways Bus Station (outside Jackson Convention Complex, 105 E. Pascagoula St.), and the All People’s Public Reception, Exhibit and Book Fair at the Jackson Convention Complex at 3 p.m. • May 26: “The Parchman Hour” plays at Jackson State University, Rose E. McCoy Auditorium (1400 John R. Lynch St.). Ticketed events include:

• May 23, 11:45 a.m.: Intergenerational Picnic at Tougaloo College, $20. • May 24, 7:30 p.m.: Freedom Rider Legacy Banquet at Jackson Convention Complex with music by Dorothy Moore, $40. • May 26, 12:30 p.m.: Freedom Rider Praise Luncheon at Jackson Marriott with guest speaker Dr. Calvin O. Butts, $30. Registration includes all events plus meals, visits to historic sites in the Delta, panel discussions and forums, a youth leadership summit, tours of Jackson civil rights sites and the Freedom Trail Marker dedication at the Medgar Evers Home Museum (2332 Margaret Walker Alexander Drive). “Freedom’s Sisters” May 25-July 30, at Smith Robertson Museum and Cultural Center (528 Bloom St.). The interactive exhibition from the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service displays the moving journeys of 20 African American women who changed history and

became heroes. The May 23 opening reception is at 6:30 p.m. Hours are 9 a.m.-5 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturdays. $4.50, $3 seniors, $1.50 children under 18; call 601-960-1457. Breach of Peace: Portraits of the 1961 Freedom Riders through June 12, at Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.). The exhibition shares journalist and photographer Eric Etheridge’s project of the same name, displaying 328 mug shots alongside 15 contemporary portraits of Freedom Riders. Free; call 601-960-1515. “The Freedom Rides: Journey for Change” through Oct. 31, at William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). The exhibit examines the arrival of the Freedom Riders in Jackson, their incarceration at the State Penitentiary at Parchman, and the impact the event had on the civil rights movement. Hours are 8 a.m.– 5 p.m. weekdays and 8 a.m.–1 p.m. Saturdays. Free; call 601-576-6850.

“An Evening with the Freedom Riders” May 19, 9 p.m., at Mississippi Public Broadcasting (broadcast channel 29, Comcast channel 7). The broadcast is of a November 2010 panel discussion with Freedom Riders at the Alamo Theater. Visit


Courtesy MPB / Tennessean


Before the Freedom Rides began, Rev. C.T. Vivian (front row, left), Diane Nash (front row, center) and Bernard LaFayette (front row, right) led demonstrators to Nashville City Hall on April 19, 1960, to confront then-Mayor Ben West.

“Three or four pick-up trucks were in front of the bus and would not let it pass, and a long caravan of cars were behind the bus,” Thomas says. The bus was sandwiched between the two groups of vehicles. When the driver tried to speed up and pass the trucks in front, the trucks would simply speed up, too. The cars behind the bus wouldn’t allow it to slow down. As the bus rode along, the Riders realized that it was slowing down. They would later find out that the tires were slashed, most likely by the men who had been squatting in front of the bus back at the terminal. “The bus driver had to pull the bus over to the shoulder of the road,” Thomas recalls. “Strangely convenient, because at the point that the bus pulled over, a crowd of people had gathered; they had just come from church.” This crowd also surrounded the bus and began beating it

with sticks and rocks and bats. “I remember I was trying to look straight ahead and not look at the mob,” Thomas says. “One guy with, (what) looked like a heavy rock, threw it up against the window, and I was sitting next to the window, and the window cracked, but it didn’t shatter, so the rock didn’t come through.” Then, one of the rioters threw a small Thermite bomb on board through a broken window, which caused the bus to catch on fire. “I remember Albert Bigelow (another Rider), who’s a retired Naval captain. … He said ‘Get down on the floor, and put your nose down against the floor because that’s where you will find the oxygen,’” Thomas says. “Well that only lasted for a few seconds. And I remember thinking, ‘I’m going to die. And if I get off this bus, the crowd outside’s going to beat me to death. And if I stay here, and I breathe this stuff, maybe it’ll

May 18 - 24, 2011



orty college students got on the bus earlier this month and began tweeting and blogging about retracing the 1961 Freedom Rides from Washington, D.C., to New Orleans. The PBS series “American Experience” invited students from across the country to join original Freedom Riders on the trip. The 10-day trip would be one long “intergenerational conversation about civic engagement,” the producers state on the website ( experience/freedomriders). The ride started May 6, and ended May 16 with stops in Jackson and New Orleans. “My fellow riders joined for a short roundtable discussion, which was decided to be continuingly discussed during the ride,” Bakrom Ismoilov, a student from La Grande, Ore., wrote in his blog during a stop in North Carolina. “Being a Muslim student, I was glad that this discussion started, as in my view, it is a growing issue that

courtesy pbs

Recreating the Rides

put me to sleep, and that’s how I’ll die.’” After lying on the floor for a few more moments, Thomas found that he couldn’t just lie there. “When the smoke gets in your lungs, involuntary reactions take over, you fight for air. … That’s when I got up, and I thought, ‘As large as I am, I can slam my shoulder against the door and get the door open,’” Thomas says. Thomas slammed his shoulder against the door once, but several men had wedged themselves against the door. He vividly remembers one of the men shouting, “Let’s burn them n*ggers alive!” But then something unexpected happened: the fuel tank exploded. The crowd outside started to run away from the bus, allowing the Riders to get off. But after a minute or so, several white men started in on them again. One of them, Thomas remembers, hit him with a baseball bat. Thomas then spotted a state trooper who was just standing around, not doing anything. “I got behind him, and in the process of doing that I put my hands on him and, you know, pushed him in front of me,” Thomas recalls. Thomas was terrified to see the Trooper pull out his gun, but instead of pointing it at him, the cop fired into the air and said, “OK, OK. You’ve had your fun.” The crowd calmed down. Soon, an ambulance showed up; but it was a “white” ambulance, and its drivers, according to Jim Crow laws, refused to take blacks to a hospital. The white Riders were not going to leave the black members of their group without medical care, so they, in turn, refused to board the white ambulance. One of the white Riders, Ed Blankenheim, offered his oxygen mask to Hank Thomas in front of a white firefighter. “He let me breathe that oxygen, and the white fireman was beside himself. … This black guy is breathing the oxygen, and that was just not supposed to happen,” Thomas remembers. After careful consideration, the trooper decided to order the ambulance drivers to take all the Riders to the hospital. Once the Riders got there, however, the mob besieged the hospital. The hospital featured separate emergency rooms for whites and blacks. The white emergency room refused to treat the blacks, so the white Riders refused to be treated. About this time, an official working under U.S. Attorney General Robert Kennedy called Alabama Gov. John Patterson to explain the gravity of the situation, Thomas says, and the Riders received treatment. Due to the smoke inhalation and the beatings, however, these Riders were unable to continue on. “None of us were in any physical shape to continue, so

by Valerie Wells

might have serious consequences.” John Walker from Murray, Ky., blogged about “dying” small southern towns like Petersburg, Va., an early stop on the trip. “They aren’t dying, just sleeping,” Walker wrote. “And when they finally wake, just maybe America will take a long look at itself and say ‘Oh, there you are. Welcome back.’” Between May and December 1961, 436 Freedom Riders took part in more than 60 rides. Riders had the same goals: to test and challenge segregated travel facilities throughout the South and awaken the nation’s conscience to the reality and injustice of segregation. Like the first Freedom Ride in 1961, the 2011 Student Freedom Ride began in Washington, D.C. The journey kicked off a series of events in partnership with many original Freedom Riders gathering for 50th anniversary events. “Every time I see these incredibly courageous people, I

want to convey how each and every day I am appreciative for the world they sacrificed so much for,” wrote Diana Mahoney from Grantham, Pa., during a stop in South Carolina. “But somewhere deep down inside, I know that no matter how many times I say it, those words stand almost as a barrier in conveying the swell of emotion, gratefulness, and indebtedness I feel I owe to each and every one of the original Freedom Riders. It is humbling to graciously accept this gift the Freedom Riders have given us. I can’t fit together words to say thank you properly.” None of the 40 students is from Mississippi.

CORE decided to suspend the Freedom Rides, not because they were afraid of what was going to happen to us; we just physically were not able to go on,” Thomas says. Thomas flew back to his home in New York. The rest of the Riders went their separate ways, for the time being. ‘They were beating us pretty badly’ While the Greyhound was on the outskirts of Anniston, the Trailways bus was having problems of its own. It had taken a more northerly route than its Greyhound counterpart and took nearly an hour longer to reach Anniston. When the Trailways bus reached Anniston, the bus station was empty. “Some local people were standing around, milling around, and they were discussing that the other bus had been burned to the ground,” Charles Person remembers. A group of locals who were waiting to get on the bus told the Riders that they weren’t going anywhere until the blacks got in the back of the bus. The black Riders on the bus—Charles Person, Herman Harris, Isaac Reynolds and

Ivor Moore—refused. “And then about eight young white guys got on the bus,” Person says. “They began to throw punches and so forth, and they were beating us pretty badly, and then two white Riders came from the back, James Peck, journalist and author of “Freedom Ride,” and Dr. Walter Bergman.” When the two white Riders came to help, the group shifted their fury to them. “James was just knocked back over, head over heels, and Bergman was stomped, and they finally just stacked us all in the back of the bus. They physically threw us in the back of the bus,” Person remembers. They forced the blacks to the back of the bus and then forced the white Riders into the back as well. “Let the n*gger lovers stay in the back with their n*gger friends,” Person remembers one of them saying. ‘Just take me somewhere.’ On Mother’s Day, May 14, the Riders rode into Birmingham. The ride was tense and quiet, the silence only bro-

ken by the occasional taunt from the front, punctuated with the word “n*gger.” It was mid-afternoon when they arrived at the bus station. Charles Person and James Peck were the first of the Riders to step off the bus and onto the asphalt. When they entered the terminal, they walked into what amounted to a Ku Klux Klan meeting. “The walls were lined with men, most wearing work clothes, khakis and stuff like that. And then, as we got near the center of the waiting room, they all started coming towards us,” Person says. The mob descended on the two Riders, hitting them with pipes, sticks and fists. Peck was forced down to the floor. The next time Charles Person would see him, his face was a bloody pulp. The Riders later found out that Bull Connor, the Birmingham police commissioner, had given the mob 15 minsee FREEDOM RIDERS, see page 19


“I couldn’t let Bull have the last word,” she says now. “In the cowboy movies, if something was going to go down, you were going to get out of town and leave town. You were going to leave by high noon.” Burks looked Connor in the eye and said, “We’ll be back in Birmingham at high noon tomorrow,” as Conner ran them back toward home. As promised, the group was back at the station the next day. On May 28, 1961, the third bus of Freedom Riders arrived at 5:30 a.m. at the Jackson Trailways station with both Burks and Brooks on board. As they moved into the lobby, the police captain shouted, “Move on. Move on. You’re under arrest.” Police arrested all who walked through the door of the lobby on charges of breach of peace and took them to the city jail. Tried the next day in municipal court, they were each fined $200 and sentenced to 60 days in jail. Five days later, Burks and 13 other TSU students were expelled because of the arrests. A 1960 ruling by Tennessee’s State Board of Education allowed any state-supported institution to expel students convicted of misconduct. After leaving city jail in Jackson, Burks began dating Brooks, following him to Chicago to raise money for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Fundraising for the movement took them to Monroe, N.C., where they were married. Soon after, the couple moved found themselves back in Jackson where they lived in the Freedom House at 714 Rose St. working for voter registration. On Dec. 15, 1961, Evers, Brannon Smith, the Rev. Smith, and Paul Brooks met to form Hico Publishing Company and Mississippi Free Press. Sovereignty Commission agents watched their every move during the meeting, documenting it for their chairman, then Gov. Ross Barnett. Burks-Brooks is credited with helping the publication from 1962-1963, but as she

sat in her Center Point, Ala., home in late April, she laughed when asked what her role was. “Could you be (considered just) an honorary editor?” she asked. She gives her husband all the credit. Mississippi Department of Archives and History

efore Martin Luther King Jr. stood on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., telling the nation of his dream in 1963, Medgar Evers also had a dream. The civil-rights activist and NAACP field officer dreamt of a newspaper to reach the under-served black population of Mississippi as he tried tirelessly to recruit blacks to vote. The paper would be filled with advertisements from black businesses, instructions on how to register to vote and the real facts about the violence against the movement. That dream was the Mississippi Free Press. Backing Evers was white Lexington newspaper publisher Hazel Brannon Smith, Rev. Robert L. T. Smith and Bill Higgs. The state-run civil rights spy agency, the Sovereignty Commission, had already identified Brannon Smith as a “trouble maker and an integrationist.” Smith, who was black, would become the future leader of the Mississippi Democratic Freedom Party. Bill Higgs, a former segregationist, was one of the only white attorneys at the time working on civil-rights cases, including James Meredith’s acceptance to the University of Mississippi. While the Mississippi Free Press was still a dream, Paul Brooks and Catherine Burks were already fighting for civil rights in Nashville, Tenn., during 1960. A student at Tennessee State University at the time, Burks wanted to be a teacher. Brooks was a seminary student. After working with the Central Committee with sit-ins and stand-ins around Nashville, they joined the Nashville Movement Freedom Riders and boarded a bus headed to New Orleans—if it got that far. They knew what could be lying ahead. The riders had all seen what had happened to the original Freedom Riders. Coming deeper south, Burks faced ultra-segregationist Bull Connor, the Birmingham, Ala., public safety commissioner, at that city’s Trailways Bus Station.

The Jackson Free Press got its name from the civil-rights paper, Mississippi Free Press.

While Paul Brooks was busy working with Mississippi Free Press, Burks-Brooks went back to Nashville to file a lawsuit against the university for suspending her in hopes that she would be able to graduate. She won her case in 1962 and was able to finish in one quarter, taking the nine hours she needed for her elementary-education degree. Coming back to Jackson the same year, Burks-Brooks remembers how it felt to be in the middle of the hype around the paper. “It was tense. We were never … in constant fear. We felt we were being watched (by the Sovereignty Commission), and people used to say we were paranoid,” she said. “We weren’t as paranoid as people thought we were.” While some details are blurry, she remembers delivering the paper with her husband to Brannon Smith in Lexington to be printed. “She was very nice,” Burks-Brooks said. “I remember that. Her expression was very pleasing.” At the time, Evers’ career had taken off, leaving the Mississippi Free Press under the

direction of Brooks. “(Evers) was more involved with the NAACP work than he was with the paper, but because his office was there, we would see him quite often,” Burks-Brooks said. “That’s why I was so surprised when they killed him, because we were doing more than he was doing. Not that we wanted to be killed, now.” Byron de la Beckwith gunned down Evers in his Jackson driveway on June 12, 1963, in front of his family. Soon after the couple left the paper for Chicago. There, Paul invented the Afro Pick with such success that he created factories in Detroit, Mich., and Ottawa, Canada. Without Evers’ or Brooks’ leadership, the Mississippi Free Press looked to the Atlanta NAACP offices for direction. The paper continued with major shifts in the editorial department, extensively covering Freedom Summer in 1964 and the murders of Freedom Summer workers James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner. In 1965, Editor Henry Kirksey was one of a group of Mississippians to file suit to redistrict the state. The voting districts then made it impossible to elect black officials. As a result of the suit, Kirksey became the first African American elected to the state Senate since Reconstruction. While financial pressures caused the Mississippi Free Press to stop printing in 1973, the paper lives on in the people it touched. Throughout its 12-year run, the Mississippi Free Press stayed true to the firstedition editorial Brooks wrote: “We believe that all men should be free—no man a slave. We believe in the freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom of movement, and freedom from intimidation. … “[E]ven more important the Mississippi Free Press makes a pledge of helping to secure these rights for those Mississippians who have been denied them.” The Jackson Free Press is named in honor of the Mississippi Free Press.

‘It Won’t Be Long’ by Sophie McNeil



May 18 - 24, 2011


‘Breach of Peace’ The violence the two groups of Riders met in Alabama kept one group from making it past Anniston and the other group from making it past Birmingham. The Student Non-

Courtesy MPB / Associated Press

utes to do whatever they wanted to the Riders. Connor’s explanation for his men’s absence? They were home with their mothers for Mother’s Day. After this went on for several minutes, photographer Thomas Langston of the Birmingham Post Herald, snapped a picture of several white men beating Person. As the flash went off, the men looked up at the photographer and then began to attack him, leaving Person alone. “And that’s how I was able to escape, because I didn’t run or anything. I just walked away,” Person says. Person walked out into the street, and spotted several municipal buses passing by. Bleeding, he flagged one of them down and told the driver, “Just take me somewhere.” The driver said that Person would be able to find help across the railroad tracks on the black side of town. The driver dropped Person off by a telephone booth, where he called Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth. The preacher sent someone to pick up Person and get him medical treatment, but the three black physicians in the Birmingham area all refused out of fear. That evening, all the Riders who had made it to Birmingham met at Shuttlesworth’s church. The group discussed the day’s events and their next stop: Montgomery. The Riders discovered, however, that no drivers were willing to take the group due to the previous day’s violence and the Alabama governor’s refusal to provide police escorts. They decided to fly directly from Birmingham to Montgomery. At the airport, “There were a lot of people … a lot of unfriendly people,” Person says. But there was no violence. After boarding the plane to Montgomery, the pilot announced a bomb threat, so everyone had to get off. Fearful that they might not get out alive, the Riders decided to fly directly to New Orleans, instead. After a bomb threat to the second plane, the group finally made it out of Alabama.

Members of the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) in Washington, D.C., as they prepare for their journey south. Left to right: Edward Blankenheim, James Farmer (co-founder and national director of CORE), Genevieve Hughes Houghton, Rev. B. Elton Cox and Henry “Hank” Thomas.

Violent Coordinating Committee, or SNCC, led by Diane Nash, didn’t want to the Ride to end on such a dismal note. SNCC recruited new Riders from Tennessee State University and Fisk University to pick up where the first Riders left off. Hank Thomas was in New York at the time, but when he heard that other Riders were continuing the movement, he decided he had to join them. John Lewis, another original Freedom Rider, also decided to make the trip. Under pressure from the Kennedy administration, Gov. John Patterson provided a convoy of National Guardsmen, armed with fixed bayonets, for the bus trip from Birmingham

to Montgomery, Ala., May 24, 1961. The guardsmen escorted the bus to the Mississippi state line, where the Riders were handed off to Mississippi National Guard and the state police. All of this protection ensured that the Ride from Birmingham to Montgomery to Jackson was uneventful. Their stop at the Jackson bus terminal was also uneventful, at least when compared to the other Riders’ stops. “I don’t remember a large crowd of people at the (Jackson,) Mississippi bus station, (but) as soon we entered the bus see FREEDOM RIDERS, see page 21

office in New York City and signed up to join the rides. He eventually made it to Jackson where he was arrested and spent 42 days at the Mississippi State Penitentiary in Parchman. It would be almost 50 years before Zuchman met Thomas, the man who inspired him to join the rides. During the first Freedom Riders reunion Freedom Rider Hank Thomas inspired 19-year-old Lewis event in November 2010 Zuchman (pictured) to join the 1961 Freedom Rides. at the Alamo Theater on Farish Street, the two men he first time Lewis Zuchman saw were honored for their civil rights work. Freedom Rider Hank Thomas was in Zuchman, who is Jewish, said he identi1961. Thomas was giving a television fied with the struggle for civil rights. Growing interview about the violence he had up in Queens, N.Y., his Jewish grandmother encountered in Anniston, Ala., while chal- was afraid to light Passover candles because lenging Jim Crow laws. Thomas’ conviction she did not want her neighbors to know they and perseverance inspired Zuchman. were Jewish. The next day, the 19-year-old headed “I grew up with this sense of underdown to the Congress of Racial Equality standing that our struggles were similar. I


was always reminded of the Holocaust by my Jewish family and was always reminded that we had this shared suffering with black people,” Zuchman says. “When I began to see what was happening to black people in America, … I began to feel very strongly that not only was it wrong, but the lesson that we learned in Europe before World War II is that you need to stand up early, or things just get worse and worse until you can’t stand up anymore.” Being Jewish wasn’t the only reason Zuchman joined the Freedom Rides. “We all had a common struggle,” he says. “Not just Jews or blacks. No one should be treated that way, and if we ever accept that then we diminish all of us.” Approximately half the white Freedom Riders were Jewish. Jackson Rabbi Perry Nussbaum frequently traveled to Parchman to meet and pray with the Freedom Riders in 1961. Six years later, in 1967, the Klan bombed Nussbaum’s home and his synagogue, Beth Israel. Luckily, no one was hurt. Thomas has frequently expressed his gratitude to the Jewish community for join-

ing the struggle for civil rights. “We have tremendous ties to Jewish people and what they have done for our struggle,” Thomas said in October 2010. “The Jews who were in the Civil Rights Movement, … many of them suffered quite a bit.” Zuchman, now 69, is the executive director of the Supportive Children’s Advocacy Network in New York City’s East Harlem neighborhood. The organization provides programs and activities for at-risk children and families in the area. During the past six months, leading up to the 50th anniversary of the Freedom Rides, he has traveled around the country speaking about his experiences. He describes this time as a period of reflection, while it has given him some of the most memorable moments of his life. “When I came down to Jackson in November, Hank (Thomas) expressed his strong feelings of the black and Jewish community coming together,” Zuchman says. “We’ve kind of crusaded since then to bring all of us—white and black—together, and particularly in this context of the Jewish and black community being so strongly aligned.”

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Civil Disobedience The Freedom Riders sought to test a Supreme Court decision that they knew was not being enforced. The Freedom Ride inspired many blacks living in the rural South to get involved in the Civil Rights Movement at the grass roots level. Their method of non-violent resistance, as advocated by Martin Luther King Jr., would serve as a blueprint for subsequent civil rights work. When asked what impact the Rides had on him, Thomas says, “They renewed my determination. They made me more see FREEDOM RIDERS, see page 24

Freedom’s Main Line by Lacey McLaughlin Aaron Phillips

station, we were arrested. And they had the paddy wagons and everything all lined up, so Mississippi was somewhat determined that they weren’t going to repeat what happened in Alabama,” Thomas says. After he was arrested, Thomas was brought before Jackson Municipal Judge James Spencer and asked how he pled to his charge of “breach of peace.” Before he could answer, Spencer interrupted him, saying, “Don’t waste my time. You’re guilty.” “That was my taste of Mississippi justice,” Thomas says. While Thomas and the other Riders met no violence in Jackson’s bus station, the city’s police station would not be so kind. According to the Jim Crow social etiquette of the day, any black man, woman or child was supposed to answer a white person with “yes, sir” or “no, sir.” Determined to avoid this practice, Freedom Riders were taught to carefully word answers. “If they asked me, ‘Is your name Hank Thomas?’ I wouldn’t say yes or no, I’d say ‘My name is Hank Thomas.’ ‘Did you come from St. Augustine, Fla.?’ ‘I came from St. Augustine, Fla.’” When Thomas was booked at the Jackson police station, the desk sergeant asked him if he had any other information that he wanted to provide. “No,” Thomas replied. “That’s when they descended on me,” he says. The officers punched Thomas but were careful not to draw any blood. When they were through, Thomas got up and asked, “What was the question again?” “Do you have anything else to say?” one of the officers responded. Determined not to answer using “sir,” he returned to the Riders’ protocol. “I don’t have anything else to say,” he replied. One of the officers then approached Thomas and accused him of “being smart,” but the sergeant waved him off. Thomas spent a week in the Hinds County jail before being transported to the State Penitentiary at Parchman. During his 35 days at Parchman, Thomas was put in solitary confinement twice.

In 1988, John Parker Adams restored the former Jackson Greyhound station where the Freedom Riders where arrested.


hen Robert Parker Adams was a teenager, he spent muggy Mississippi afternoons playing pinball at Jackson’s Greyhound station at 219 N. Lamar St. It was just across the street from his school, Central High School. By 1988, Greyhound relocated the station, and the city had condemned the building where the Freedom Riders were arrested in 1961. Adams moved his firm into the building in 1988. It needed significant repairs, and original features such as the running neon greyhound on the building’s façade no longer worked. Since 1970, Robert Parker Adams Architects has specialized in historicpreservation projects. With historic tax incentives, Adams transformed the stations’ coffee shop into a meeting space with 10-foot-tall glass doors. He modeled a receptionist desk in the center of the building after the horseshoe-shaped counter where patrons used to eat. The original counter disappeared during the Freedom Rides and vending machines took its place. The restaurant’s original jukeboxes hang on the wall next to a mural that replaced windows that overlooked the station’s loading dock. The mural, by Jackson artist P. Sanders McNeal, replicates the station during its heyday in the 1940s. Several members of the firm, including Adams and his wife, are pictured in the mural. Adams has preserved his memories of the station in the office, which contains a pinball machine. A Grey-

hound emblem from an old bus adorns the wall behind firm’s coffee station. The ticket counters are still intact, and Adams repaired the running neon greyhound to light up again. “The running dog was an icon that was important to this building because it was developed by the architect who designed it,” Adams says. “… When we got here, we learned that there was only one other running dog in the country. The others had all been changed or broken.” The firm’s historic restoration projects include the Old Capitol Building, the Mississippi War Memorial Building and the Governor’s Mansion. In 1994, Adams won the Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts for his preservation efforts. Visitors wander into the office frequently, and Adams is happy to give impromptu tours. A plaque on the wall explains the historic significance of the station and the Freedom Riders’ arrest. Ten years ago, he hosted the 40th anniversary of the Freedom Rides at the former station. On May 24, in honor of the Freedom Rider’s 50th year anniversary, Mississippi will commemorate the former station with the second marker on the state’s Freedom Trail. The Mississippi Development Authority announced the trail May 5, which will initially mark 30 civil-rights sites in the Magnolia State. The marker unveiling is 11 a.m., Tuesday, May 24, at 219 Lamar St. The event is open to the public.

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Where are they now? determined than ever to fight for equal rights in this country.â&#x20AC;? The Rides also gave him a new perspective and optimism to rely on when faced with lifeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s obstacles. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Whenever I had a setback, I said, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;well, I survived Anniston, I survived Jackson, I survived Parchman, and I can come through this as well,â&#x20AC;&#x2122;â&#x20AC;? he says. Former editorial intern Dylan Watson, aka â&#x20AC;&#x153;the Instigator,â&#x20AC;? is from Indianola. He will be a junior at Millsaps College in the fall, where he studies political science and philosophy. Comment at

John Lewis â&#x20AC;&#x201C; born Feb. 21, 1940, was 21 during the Ride. He was elected to represent Georgia in the U.S. House of Representatives in 1980 and still holds this position. Hank Thomas â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Born Aug. 29, 1941, in Jacksonville, Fla., Thomas served in Vietnam in 1965 and 1966. He now lives in Stone Mountain, Ga., and is the owner of four Marriot hotels and two McDonaldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s.

by Marika Cackett

Marika Cacket

â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Jail Not Bailâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;

Charles Person â&#x20AC;&#x201D; The youngest of the original 13 Freedom Riders, Person was 18 when he boarded the bus in Washington, D.C., and a freshman at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Ga. After serving 20 years in the U.S. Marine Corps, Persons taught in Atlantaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s public schools until his retirement. He still lives in Atlanta.

Freedom Rider Fred Clark is now a teacher at Powell Middle School in Jackson.


red Clark always felt something was not right with how the South treated blacks. In summer 1961, our nation was embroiled in a bitter war between the segregated southern United States and those who sought to enforce the 1954 Brown vs. Board of Education order to integrate schools. Clark, then a skinny, shy 19-year-old boy from Jackson, found himself right in the middle. He began his activist journey by learning. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I began reading and was informed by

some very good teachers that took time with us, nurtured us and taught us right from wrong,â&#x20AC;? he says. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I was able to go back and look at both sides of the fence with the rich Lamptonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s (a Jewish family my grandmother worked for on one side) and my (all-black) neighborhood (on the other); I came to the conclusion that something wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t right.â&#x20AC;? As a teenager, Clark engaged in numerous activities to protest segregation in and around Jackson. From sit-ins at the local Woolworthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s lunch counter to boycotts of business that wouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t serve blacks, Clark was




=^]P[R^W^[XR1TTa May 18 - 24, 2011









involved early and often in Jacksonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Civil Rights Movement. â&#x20AC;&#x153;By high school I was pushed just about as far as I could be pushed and had to do something about it,â&#x20AC;? Clark recalls. While attending Lanier High School, Clark passed out literature and went to meetings with the NAACP. In 1959, Clark trained under Martin Luther King Jr. and Rev. James Bevel. With that training came the knowledge of non-violent resistance. When the buses finally came to Jackson in 1961, Clark knew he wanted to be involved. On July 9, 1961, Clark and 10 teens he had recruited headed to the Trailways Bus Station in downtown Jackson, site now of the Arts Center of Mississippi. Both Bevel and activist Diane Nash stayed with Clark to organize the Rides leaving from Jackson. Clark recalls: â&#x20AC;&#x153;I asked for a ticket to Canton or New Orleans. I canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t remember which. They just ignored me. Eventually, Captain Ray of the Jackson Police Department walked up and asked me to leave the station. He asked us three times, and when we did nothing, he put us under arrest for breach of the peace and inciting a riot.â&#x20AC;? Some of the Riders were minors as young as 15. Those individuals were sent home with their parents. But Clark, who had just turned 19 the month before, and few others were sent first to the Jackson city jail. When the city jail and the Hinds County jail became flooded with Freedom Riders, the whole group was transferred to the Mississippi State Prison at Parchman.

Fred Clark spent 38 days in Parchman. His memories are clear: â&#x20AC;&#x153;Parchman was steel and concrete, and the people were just as cold.â&#x20AC;? Like many other Freedom Riders, Clark adopted the â&#x20AC;&#x153;jail not bailâ&#x20AC;? tactic. Thomas Gaither, field secretary for CORE at the time, and other civil-rights leaders devised this strategy to induce overcrowding at jails by refusing to post bail, remaining incarcerated to force change. Clark and his fellow Riders said prayers and sang freedom songs in shifts, 24 hours a day. Clark endured abuse while at Parchman, but neither numerous beatings nor death threats deterred him. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I thought, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;If I can survive Parchman, I can survive anything,â&#x20AC;&#x2122;â&#x20AC;? he said. Clark has experienced immense hatred from racist whites and has also known kindness from other whites. It was a conflict for him, but 50 years later, Clark is accepting. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Reconciliation is strong with me now that Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve matured and grown in my faith,â&#x20AC;? he says. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I had to learn to pray for my enemy, to love them and not want to seek revenge. I was a radical. â&#x20AC;&#x153;â&#x20AC;Ś Eventually, I was freed from hate. I prayed to God to release me from this hate. Now I am a finished product.â&#x20AC;? Today, Clark is a teacher at Powell Middle School. He uses his story to teach his young students not only about the dark and violent history of his past but to teach the greater lessons as well. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Reconciliation is the only way,â&#x20AC;? Clark tells his students. â&#x20AC;&#x153;If you try to take hate to fight hate, it wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t work.â&#x20AC;?

D O N AT E N O W !

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Mississippi Puppetry Guild

Peter Zapletal, Puppeteer

Peter Zapletal tours schools and libraries with his puppets.


he puppets Peter Zapletal makes are works of art, all unified by his craftsmanship. The sly smile on bunnies wearing striped suits in “Carnival of Animals” and the details in the construction of the robbers Fritz and Wolfgang that allows

May 18 - 24, 2011

Is this your first time in Mississippi? I think it is my second time through there. I think the last time I was there was about three years ago.


How do you work new material into your act? Do you have a “home club” where you try stuff out, or do you just throw it out there? I just throw it out there. Trust me, there’s enough stupidity going on in (Washington,)

Zapletal’s family immigrated to New York City in 1967, where he produced puppet shows and began to gain notoriety. He experienced a different puppetry culture than the state-sponsored artistic endeavors found in Slovakia. “In America, each puppeteer is really different than the other. Many are looking to the classic stories or the new books for children (for inspiration),” he says. “There is a large variety of shows in American, but you still have much smaller companies than in Slovakia or the Czech Republic.” In 1971, Mississippi Public Broadcasting offered Zapletal a job as a puppeteer. His acceptance meant a move to Jackson, and the opportunity to use puppets as educational tools. “At that time, the public television was all about education which meant working with the State Department of Education and producing programs for classroom use,” Zapletal says. “We worked very closely with teachers, using their curriculum and produced a program that was eventually distributed nationwide.” Some of the educational shows Zapletal has helped develop include a show about

by Brent Hearn

D.C., and Wall Street that, you know, we won’t run out of material for a while. In the realm of stand-up, movies, TV—whatever—who is on the money right now? Who do you find funny? Hell, man. Sh*t, I find me funny. I find me funny as hell. ... Obama’s pretty funny. I mean, you know, he did good on Donald Trump’s ass last week. … Donald ain’t said sh*t since. He shut him down. Your first foray into show business was as a dancer. Do you get a chance to use that any more? Naw. People don’t dance no more. Aw, I’m sorry. Yeah, they do. They got “Dancing With the Stars.” Yeah. Would you ever be on “Dancing With the Stars” if you got asked? Hell, naw, man. You know what that is? That’s “Dancing With the Has-Beens.” I think that would make that show vastly more entertaining. Not gonna happen.

Can you talk a little bit about your music? Aw, man, you can go to EddieGriffin. com and check it out—on sale right there. It’s like jazz meets funk meets reggae. Or as I like to call it, “funk-sual jazz.”

China and many about music. A wide variety of shows also means Zapletal is responsible for the development of a multitude of puppets. Zapletal’s puppets are unique to their show. “We want to offer the students a different look at every show, so every design reflects the show other than one design being adapted for different shows,” he says. “When you see our puppets you cannot tell, ‘oh, that’s from Mississippi Puppetry Guild,’ but when you look at the Muppets you know it came from Muppets.” Zapletal has won numerous awards for his puppets and puppet shows, including one national Emmy and four regional Emmys for the television show “Ticktock Minutes” and the Puppeteers of America Award for high standards and continued excellence in puppetry. He is a past president of the Union Internationale de la Marionette and was the artistic coordinator for the 1980 World Puppetry Festival at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. Zapletal will offer a puppet-making class this summer through Millsaps Office of Continuing Education. For information, call 601-9741130. For information about the Mississippi Puppetry Guild, visit Herman Rodriguez


by Jesse Crow

them to move in “The Breman Town Musicians” are just two examples of the way Zapletal uses art to bring stories to the stage. Puppets are Zapletal’s life. Zapletal, 66, is artistic director for Puppet Arts Theatre and is one of the few working puppeteers in Mississippi. He uses the art of puppetry to enhance children’s education throughout the state and the rest of the United States. Puppet Arts Theatre is a touring puppet theater group, and is part of the Mississippi Puppetry Guild, an organization that unites all the puppet organizations in the state. Zapletal’s interest in puppets began during his youth in Gilina, Slovakia—a country at the center of modern puppetry. He attended the Academy for Performing Arts in Prague and graduated with a master’s degree in puppetry. Using his imagination is why Zapletal enjoys being a puppeteer. “I like that you have the chance to create your own world where everything moves the way you want it,” he says. “You get a chance to present this world to the children and their parents, and that plays up their imagination.”

Dancing with Eddie Griffin ddie Griffin has come a long way from choreographing Chiefs games in his hometown of Kansas City, Mo., at 16. What began as a dare to tell jokes at a local comedy club has led to dozens of film roles, including turns in “Undercover Brother” and the “Deuce Bigalow” franchise. If you’ve seen his stand-up, you know that Griffin, 42, didn’t achieve the stature he enjoys by self-censoring. He’s been honored by Comedy Central as one of the top 100 stand-up performers of all time. I caught up with him by phone recently, and he stayed true to form. Griffin will headline a stand-up comedy show May 20 at Jackson State University for the BeanSprout Benefit.

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What’s next for you? What do you have in the works right now? A couple of film projects in the works … then, just relaxing for the rest of the year. I belong to a local troupe of stand-up comics called the Intellectual Bulimics. I’m sure you’ve heard of us; we’re obscenely famous. Yes, indeed. World-renowned. We’re in the middle of a one-city tour. It’s kind of a long tour; we’ve been at it for three or four years now. If I were to say, “Eddie, we like you. We think you have the potential to make it in this business someday. Would you like to open for one of our shows?” what would be your response? You guys are way too big for me. I am humbled that you would even consider me.

Actor and stand-up comedian Eddie Griffin performs at the BeanSprout Benefit July 8.

See Eddie Griffin, Michael Blackson, Antoine Blackman and Kwame Siegel perform at the BeanSprout Benefit Comedy Show, starting at 8 p.m., Friday, July 8 (rescheduled from May 20), in the Rose McCoy Auditorium at Jackson State University. The BeanSprout Benefit was created to assist spinal-cord injury victims achieve a better quality of life. Tickets are $45 and $65, and are available at Be-Bop. Call 601-291-3647 for more information.


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BEST BETS May 11 - 18, 2011 by Latasha Willis Fax: 601-510-9019 Daily updates at

Wednesday 5/18

Courtesy Percy Davis

Carolyn Ford Brownell’s art exhibit at Fitness Lady North (331 Sunnybrook Road, Ridgeland) closes today. Free; call 601-354-0066. … Jason Bailey performs at F. Jones Corner’s blues lunch. … Historian Vince Venturini speaks at noon during History Is Lunch at the William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). Bring lunch; call 601576-6998. … Dreamz JXN hosts Wasted Wednesday. … The JPS All City Elementary Music Festival is at 7 Cardozo Middle School (3180 McDowell Road Ext.). Free; call 601960-8935. … The Strange Pilgrims and Front Porch Dance perform at 7 p.m. at the Tanzania benefit concert at The Commons. $7; call 601-352-3399. … Karaoke at Ole Tavern and Pop’s. … Poets II has music with DJ Phingaprint.

Friday 5/20

Barry Leach performs at the Sunset Series with Raphael Semmes at 5 p.m. at Underground 119. Free. … Art House Downtown Cinema presents “Blank City” at 7 p.m. and “Heartbeats” at 8:45 p.m. tonight and tomorrow at Russell C. Davis Planetarium (201 E. Pascagoula St.). $7 per film; visit … The Jeff and Jeff Band is at Reed Pierce’s. … Chimney Choir and Wooden Finger perform at Sneaky Beans. … Eddie Griffin headlines the BeanSprout benefit comedy show at 8 p.m. at Jackson State University, McCoy Auditorium (1400 John R. Lynch St.). $65, $45; call 601291-3647. … Velcro Pygmies play at 8 p.m. at Fire. $10.

Saturday 5/21

The Market in Fondren opens at 8 a.m. at 3270 North State St. Call 601-832-4396. … The opening reception for Elizabeth Bennett’s “Whimsy” art exhibit is from 2-5 p.m. at Cups in Clinton; exhibit hangs through June 30. Free; call 601-924-4952. … Symphony on the Square is at 6 p.m. in the Canton Historical Square. Free; call 800-844-3369. … “The Voice” gospel concert honoring radio personality Percy Davis at 7 p.m. at Word and Worship Church (6286 Hanging Moss Road) includes music by Doug Williams, Da Minista and Benjamin Cone III. Free; call 601-927-7625. … The roller derby bout between the Magnolia Roller Vixens and the Torpedo Bay Roller Girls is at 7 p.m. at the Jackson Convention Complex. $12 in advance, $15 at the door, $5 children; call 601-376-9122. … The Mississippi Community Symphonic Band and the River City Concert Band perform at 7 p.m. in the Belhaven University Center for the Arts (835 Riverside Drive). Free; call 601-605-2786.

Sunday 5/22

See the opera film “Salome” at 2 p.m. at Russell C. Davis Planetarium (201 E. Pascagoula St.) $16; visit … The Mostly Monthly Ceili is at 2 p.m. at Fenian’s. Free; email … The Freedom Riders Radio personality Percy Davis is honored at “The Voice” Concert at Word and Worship Church May 21 at 7 p.m.

May 18 - 24, 2011

The annual Spring Market kicks off at 9 a.m. at Mississippi Trade Mart (1200 Mississippi St.) and runs through May 21. $8, $12 3-day pass, children 12 and under free; call 662890-3359, ext. 238. … Downtown at Dusk is at 5 p.m. on Congress Street in front of the Plaza Building. Men of Leisure performs. Free admission, $5 food, $2 beer, $1 water and soda; call 601-974-6044, ext. 221. … Watch “An Evening with the Freedom Riders” at 9 p.m. on Mississippi Public Broadcasting (broadcast channel 29, Comcast channel 7). Visit mpbonline. org/freedomriders. … Cherokee Inn has music by the D’lo Trio at 6:30 p.m. Free. … Emma Wynters and the Beggars No Mo’ Band perform at Pelican Cove. … Ladies Night at Ole Tavern and Martin’s. … Daphanie Sigler performs at Hal & 30 Mal’s. … Spirits of the House plays at Fenian’s at 9 p.m. Free.

Monday 5/23

The Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum (1152 Lakeland Drive) hosts the Cellular South Ferriss Trophy Program at 11:30 a.m. $35; call 800-280-FAME. … The opening reception for the “Freedom Sisters” exhibit is at 6:30 p.m. at Smith Robertson Museum (528 Bloom St.); exhibit hangs through July 30. Free reception; $4.50, $3 seniors, $1.50 children under 18 for exhibit; call 601-960-1457.

Tuesday 5/24

The Empowering Communities for a Healthy Mississippi Conference is at 8 a.m. at the Hilton Jackson (1001 E. County Line Road) and runs through May 27. $105, $45 students with ID; call 601-985-8727. … Mauri Armstrong Davis’ art exhibit at St. Andrew’s Lower School (4120 Old Canton Road) closes today. Free; call 601-987-9300. … “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” is at 7:30 p.m. at New Stage Theatre (1100 Carlisle St.); runs through June 5. $25, $22 seniors and students; call 601-948-3533.

Wednesday 5/25

Architectural historian Jennifer Baughn speaks during History Is Lunch at noon at the William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). Bring lunch; call 601576-6998. … Kathryn Stockett signs copies of “The Help” at 5 p.m. at Lemuria Books (202 Banner Hall, 4465 Interstate 55 N.). $16 book; call 601-366-7619. More events and details at Chimney Choir performs at Sneaky Beans May 20. ian hutchison

Thursday 5/19

50th Anniversary Reunion officially kicks off at 4 p.m. with a free opening reception at the Jackson Marriott (200 E. Amite St.). Additional free and ticketed events through May 26; visit for details. … The All Day All Night CD release show is at 6 p.m. at Christ United Methodist Church (6000 Old Canton Road). $5.

jfpevents 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. JFP sports writer Bryan Flynn also gives commentary at 12:45 p.m. Listen to podcasts of all shows at Free; call 601-362-6121, ext. 17. The Market in Fondren May 21, 8 a.m., at 3270 N. State St., in the parking lot across from Mimi’s. Artists and food producers sell goods. Entertainment provided. Free; call 601-832-4396. Magnolia Roller Vixens Roller Derby May 21, 7 p.m., at Jackson Convention Complex (105 E. Pascagoula St.). The team takes on the Torpedo Bay Roller Girls. Doors open at 6 p.m. $50 season passes are available ($20 for children). $12 in advance, $15 at the door, $5 children; call 601-376-9122. JFP Chick Ball July 9, 6 p.m., at Hal & Mal’s (200 S. Commerce St.). The fundraiser benefits the Center for Violence Prevention. Seeking sponsors, auction donations and volunteers now. More details: and follow on Twitter @jfpchickball. Get involved, volunteer, donate art, money or gifts at chickball@jacksonfreepress .com. Be a sponsor for as low as $50. Call 601-362-6121, ext. 16. Mississippi Happening ongoing. Guaqueta Productions hosts the monthly broadcast, which features a special musical guest. Download free podcasts at

COMMUNITY MARL Summer Camp Enrollment, at Mississippi Animal Rescue League (5221 Greenway Drive Ext.). Sessions are June 7-10 and June 14-17 from 10:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Register by May 20. $125; e-mail SCORE Breakfast May 18, 7:30 a.m., at University Club (210 E. Capitol St. #2200). Learn more about SCORE, a nonprofit that helps small businesses grow and succeed. Breakfast provided for those who pre-register. Free; call 601-540-5415. Nature Nuts Preschool Program May 18-Nov. 16, at Clinton Community Nature Center (617 Dunton Road, Clinton). For children ages 2-5. Sessions are held on third Wednesdays from 10-11 a.m. Registration required. Receive a $2 discount for each additional child. $8 per session, $5 members; call 601-926-1104. “History Is Lunch” May 18, noon, at William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). Historian Vince Venturini presents “The History of South Jackson, 1845-1975.” Bring lunch; coffee/water provided. Free; call 601-576-6998. Spring Market May 19-21, at Mississippi Trade Mart (1200 Mississippi St.). Shop for the latest in spring fashion, home decor and gourmet foods. $8, $12 3-day pass, children 12 and under free; call 662-890-3359, ext. 238. Downtown at Dusk May 19, 5 p.m., at Congress Street in front of the Plaza Building. The event includes food for sale and music by Men of Leisure. Free admission, $5 food, $2 beer, $1 water and soda; call 601-353-9800 or 601-326-7610. Co-housing Forum May 19, 5:30 p.m., at Beagle Bagel (898 Avery Blvd N., Ridgeland). Learn more about the concept of designing and operating collaborative housing. Visit Café MIRA May 19, 6:30 p.m., at Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance (MIRA) (612 N. State St.). The event features the screening of “A Class Apart,” a documentary about the Hernandez v. Texas civil-rights case. A discussion follows the film. Refreshments sold. $5; call 601-968-5182. Summer Reading Training May 20, noon, at Enochs Parent Resource Center (101 Near St.). The workshop for program providers gives strategies for incorporating JPS summer reading books into an

existing program and encouraging children to read. Lunch provided. Free; call 601-948-4725. Math Bash May 20, 4 p.m., at Brinkley Middle School (3535 Albermarle Road). The Young People’s Project hosts an introduction to aspects of the organization such as math literacy, media literacy, policy and advocacy. Refreshments served. Free; call 601-987-0013. Business Expo May 21, 8 a.m., at Mississippi e-Center (1230 Raymond Road). Entrepreneurs will lead training sessions, and participants have access to procurement opportunities and funding for small businesses. Registration required. Free; call 601-366-8301. Family Fun Fair May 21, 9 a.m., at Enochs Parent Resource Center (101 Near St.). Parents attend a training session to learn reading tips for their kids, and kids enjoy face painting, games, crafts and more. Call 601-965-1346. National Go Outdoors Events May 21-22 and May 28-29, at Bass Pro Shops (100 Bass Pro Drive, Pearl). Activities vary and include fishing demonstrations, a casting contest and a Dutch-oven cooking demonstration. Free; call 601-933-3700. Mostly Monthly Ceili May 22, 2 p.m., at Fenian’s Pub (901 E. Fortification St.). Enjoy a familyfriendly gathering of folks interested in Irish music and dance. Jackson Irish Dancers is the sponsor. Free; email Cellular South Ferriss Trophy Program May 23, 11:30 a.m., at Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum (1152 Lakeland Drive). The Ferriss Trophy is awarded annually to Mississippi’s top college baseball player. $35; call 800-280-FAME. Yazoo Brewery Firkin Tapping May 23, 5 p.m., at Parlor Market (115 W. Capitol St.). Doors open at 5 p.m., and the keg is tapped at 6 p.m. Enjoy beer specials and a special menu. $10 per pint (includes commemorative glass); call 601-360-0090. Elk Cove Wine Dinner May 23, 6 p.m., at BRAVO! (4500 Interstate 55 North). Enjoy a sixcourse dinner paired with wines from Elk Cove Vineyards, including the 2008 Pinot Noir Reserve. Reservations required; limited seating. $95 per person; call 601-982-8111. “Completing the Form 1023” Workshop May 24, 8:30 a.m., at Mississippi Center for Nonprofits (921 N. President St., Suite C). The workshop is a page-by-page review of the IRS form. Registration required. $60, $35 members; call 601-968-0061. Jackson Audubon Society Annual Meeting and Potluck Supper May 24, 6:30 p.m., at Eudora Welty Library (300 N. State St.). The program includes officer elections and a slideshow of pictures from members. Bring a dish to share; visitors welcome. Call 601-956-7444.

WELLNESS Open House, May 19, 9:30 a.m. at Hinds Behavioral Health Services (3450 Highway 80 W.). Free; call 601-321-2400. Stroke: Prevention and Warning Signs May 18, 11:45 a.m., at Baptist Healthplex, Clinton (102 Clinton Parkway, Clinton). Neurologist Dr. Keith Jones is the speaker. Registration required. Free; call 601-948-6262 or 800-948-6262. Raindrops to Rainbows: Helping Children Cope During Difficult Times May 22, 2 p.m., at Mississippi Children’s Museum (2145 Highland Drive). Therapists, psychologists and other mental health professionals address depression, ADHD, bullying and building self-esteem. Hands-on activities include story time, puppet shows and arts activities. Free with paid admission; call 601-981-5469 or 877-793-KIDS. Empowering Communities for a Healthy Mississippi Conference May 24-27, at Hilton Jackson (1001 E. County Line Road). Topics include disease

BE THE CHANGE Tanzania Benefit Concert May 18, 7 p.m., at The Commons at Eudora Welty’s Birthplace (719 N. Congress St.). Performers include the Strange Pilgrims and Front Porch Dance. The cash bar opens at 6:30 p.m. Proceeds go toward a mission trip to Tanzania. $7; call 601-352-3399. BeanSprout Benefit Comedy Show May 20, 8 p.m., at Jackson State University: Rose E. McCoy Auditorium (1400 Lynch St.). Performers include Eddie Griffin (“Malcolm and Eddie,” “Undercover Brother”), Michael Blackson, Antoine Blackman and Kwame Siegel. Doors open at 7 p.m. Proceeds benefit BeanSprout, an organization that helps spinal cord injury victims. Tickets available at BeBop. $65 floor and box, $45 balcony; call 601-291-3647. Summer Reading Workshops May 21-July 3. Designed to help students and their parents with JPS mandatory summer reading assignments, United Way’s workshops are held throughout the summer at area libraries. Workshops are offered for every grade. Go to or dial 211 for a schedule and locations. Volunteers needed. Call 601-948-4725. management and prevention, tips for health-care workers and empowering the community. CEUs available. $105, $45 students with ID; call 601985-8727.

STAGE AND SCREEN Events at Russell C. Davis Planetarium (201 E. Pascagoula St.). Visit • Art House Cinema Downtown May 20-21 Films include “Blank City” at 7 p.m. and “Heartbeats” at 8:45 p.m. Popcorn and beverages served. $7 per film. • “Salome” May 22, 2 p.m. The Mississippi Opera and the Mississippi Film Institute present the opera film from Bologna. $16. “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” May 24-June 5, at New Stage Theatre (1100 Carlisle St.). The biblical saga of Joseph and his coat of many colors comes to life in the musical. 7:30 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. $25, $22 seniors/students; call 601-948-3533.

MUSIC Events at Word and Worship Church (6286 Hanging Moss Road). Call 601-927-7625. • Gospel Artist Showcase May 21, 1 p.m. Audition for a chance to perform at the Jackson Music Awards July 10. Contestants have four minutes to perform. Top three receive trophies. Registration required. • The Voice: 30 Years of Gospel and R&B Excellence May 21, 7 p.m. WOAD Gospel 1300 program director Percy Davis is honored for 30 years in radio. Performers include Doug Williams of the Williams Brothers, Genita Pugh, Da Minista, Monica Lisa Stevenson and Benjamin Cone III. Free; call 601-927-7625. JPS All City Elementary Music Festival May 18, 7 p.m., at Cardozo Middle School (3180 McDowell Road Ext.). Jackson Public Schools students showcase their talents at the 34th annual event. Free; call 601-960-8935. Sunset Series with Raphael Semmes May 20, 5 p.m., at Underground 119 (119 S. President Street), on the outdoor stage in the parking lot. Semmes performs with the 119 Blues Machine featuring Barry Leach. Free; call 601-352-2322. Symphony on the Square May 21, 6 p.m., at Canton Historic Square, on the courthouse lawn. Local talent and the Mississippi Symphony orchestra perform. Free; call 800-844-3369. Mississippi Community Symphonic Band May 21, 7 p.m., at Belhaven University Center for the Arts (835 Riverside Drive). The performance includes the River City Concert Band of Memphis, Tenn. Free; call 601-605-2786.

LITERARY AND SIGNINGS Events at Afrika Book Café (404 Mitchell Ave.). Book prices vary; email • Brothas, Books and Brew May 20, 5 p.m., for men on first and third Fridays.

• Watoto Story Time May 21, 11:30 a.m., for children on first and third Saturdays. • Sista Speak May 21, 4 p.m., for women on first and third Saturdays. Events at Lemuria Books (202 Banner Hall, 4465 Interstate 55 N.). Call 601-366-7619. • “The Hands of Strangers” May 19, 5 p.m. Michael F. Smith signs copies of his book; reading at 5:30 p.m. $9.95 book. • “This I Believe: On Fatherhood” May 21, 1 p.m. Contributor Bob May signs copies of the book; reading at 1:30 p.m. $19.95 book. • “Singing on Canvas” May 24, 5 p.m. Edwina McDuffie Goodman signs copies of her book. $29.95 book. • “The Help” May 25, 5 p.m. Kathryn Stockett signs copies of her book. The movie based on the novel premieres August 12. $16 book.

CREATIVE CLASSES Ballet Magnificat! Summer Dance Intensive Registration through May 20, at Ballet Magnificat! Studios (5406 Interstate 55 North) and Belhaven University (1500 Peachtree St.). For ages 11-24. Two-week and four-week sessions available June 25July 23. Register by May 20. $50 registration fee, tuition $711.55 and up; call 601-977-1001. Brownie Workshop May 18, 9 a.m., at Viking Cooking School (Township at Colony Park, 1107 Highland Colony Parkway, Ridgeland). Recipes include fudgy brownie pops and raspberry white chocolate blondies. $69; call 601-898-8345. Praise and Worship Dance Class May 21, 9 a.m., at Millsaps College (1701 N. State St.). Participants learn proper ballet and lyrical dance techniques. $60, $10 materials fee; call 601-974-1130. Spanish Cooking Class May 21, 10 a.m., at Lingofest Language Center (7048 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland). Make arepas colombianas, Columbian white corn cakes. $10; call 601-500-7700. Five-Day Painting Workshop May 23-27, 9 a.m4 p.m., at Pat Walker Art Studio (141 Locust St., Rolling Fork). William Kalwick is the instructor. $595; call 662-873-4003.

EXHIBITS AND OPENINGS “Whimsy” Exhibit May 21-June 30, at Cups in Clinton (101 W. Main St.). See works by Elizabeth Bennett. The opening reception is from 2-5 p.m. May 21. Free; call 601-924-4952. The Stowe Show through May 31, at Light and Glass Studio (523 S. Commerce St.). See works by Nicole and Richard Stowe. Free; email radkins@ Check for updates and more listings. To add an event, email all details (phone number, start and 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.





by Briana Robinson

Pot’s Simmering, Gumbo’s Ready


y day, the men are schoolteachers and repairmen. But by night, the gentlemen of Southern Komfort Brass Band bring New Orleans-style brass-band music to Jackson. Traditional New Orleans brass-band music dates back to the late 19th century. It started out as a mixture of European-style military band music and African folk music, and developed into a style of jazz you hear today. A variety of instruments can be featured in such bands, but the tuba and drums usually make up the backbone by providing steady beats. Drawing from influences such as Rebirth Brass Band and Soul Rebels Brass Band, Southern Komfort incorporates older covers, contemporary music and original songs. Formed in summer 2010, Southern Komfort Brass Band now has seven members, each with an extensive background in music performance. Tim Boyd, 32, attended Tougaloo College after living in New Orleans all his life. He plays the snare drum. Sousaphone (aka tuba) player Jamie Abrams, 39, and saxophone player Cedric Eubanks, 36, both started playing the piano in first grade. Lorenzo Gayden, 36, plays the trombone and attended Jackson State University. Trumpet players Joseph Handy, 28, and Terry Miller, 42, also attended JSU and majored in music. New Orleans native Gerard Howard, 33, has been playing the drums since his childhood and also attended JSU. People may not be accustomed to hearing brass music, but at their show this spring at Sneaky Beans, everyone just latched on. “It

was almost like we brought New Orleans right to Jackson, right there in Fondren,” Howard says. “People were remembering their favorite part of New Orleans while hearing us.” At Sneaky Beans, as well as during parades, they could not help but dance. They had their own little second line. (In New Orleans, when parade watchers start to follow the band to enjoy the music, it is referred to as the “second line” of the parade. The first line is the official parade.) Having second lines in Jackson, with their own style and dancers twirling umbrellas or handkerchiefs in the air, is on Southern Komfort Brass Band’s to-do list. “The pot of gumbo has been simmering since June 2010, and we’re just now starting to hand out bowls,” Gayden says. Southern Komfort Brass Band has played Mal’s St. Paddy’s Parade and the Zippity Doo Dah Parade, as well as at churches and for charity events. “The brass band format is more of a soulful invested format,” Howard says. Boyd backs him up, saying that when he’s playing his snare, “I just want people to feel good. I’m gonna beat it until they feel good.” “We were trying to find a name that captures the spirit of the ensemble,” Eubanks says. “We all happened to share the same spirit.” The members of Southern Komfort met through a mutual friend and musician and can be considered a break-off from Bayou Connection, another band in town. “A lot of people who aren’t really familiar with the art form from the musician’s perspec-

Southern Komfort causes spontaneous second lines to form.

tive would think it’s a very loose form of music,” Gayden says, adding that it takes work to perform brass-band music well. “With brassband music, everyone has to know exactly what it is that they’re doing. Once you know what you’re doing exactly and precisely, then you can loosen it up.” Eubanks says that it takes “a keen sense of awareness about the melody and the harmony and what your fellow musicians are playing” to liven up a song while staying within the form and structure. Handy and Eubanks are music teachers in Jackson Public Schools. Miller teaches music in Madison County Schools and Gayden is a music instructor at Jackson Academy. “There is a correlation between academic achievement and involvement in extracurricular activities, especially music,” Gayden says. “We wouldn’t exist as a band if it weren’t for public music-education programs.” Music education in Mississippi is no-

where near where it should be, they say. Southern Komfort wants to give young people in Jackson more options for what they can hear around town, imitating the deeply rooted music culture of New Orleans. For Miller, exposure is key. He wants kids to see what Southern Komfort is doing and recognize that they can do it, too. “Teach music to the child and give the soul a voice,” Miller says. The brass band is just the next step up from the marching band for serious musicians who play because they want to. Abrams, Eubanks, Handy and Howard were members of JSU’s Sonic Boom marching band. Southern Komfort is not around to make a profit; they did not even charge half of the events they have done. This is just a group of men playing music because they love music. To find out where Southern Komfort Brass Band is playing next, check out the band’s Facebook page.

The Key of G ‘Grey Skies’ Clearing by Garrad Lee



May 18 - 24, 2011


rad “Kamikaze” Franklin, aka Kaz, is many things to many people: husband, father, advocate for Jackson, columnist for this paper, rapper, business owner, activist and a member of the Kiss Army. Wait, what? “I was a rock enthusiast before I got into hip-hop,” he tells me while we are hanging out at Dreamz JXN, the club on Capitol Street that he co-owns. “I was and still am a diehard. I have all of their albums.” He also told me that he was bugged out when they took off the makeup in 1983. You think you know someone, and then they tell you that their favorite movie growing up was “Kiss Meets the Phantom of the Park.” All of this helps to make sense out of Kaz’s decision to take a step back from solo rap performances to focus on the rock band that he fronts, Storage 24. The band just won the Dothan, Ala., District Lounge’s Battle of the Bands 2011, and it provides him with “another avenue to be strange.”

“I have done everything I’ve wanted to do with hip-hop,” he says. The life of a travelling hip-hopper is not too conducive to the family lifestyle that Kaz has become accustomed to. Not wanting to miss out on the parts of his 1-year-old daughter’s life that he might

Crooked Lettaz released the album “Grey Skies” 12 years ago.

have missed with his older children, he is stepping away on his own terms.

“I am ready to make my own schedule and call my own shots,” he tells me. While Kaz is retiring as a solo act, he is not leaving the game entirely. He still plans to record and perform guest verses when called upon. More importantly, he takes his role as mentor to the new generation of hip-hop artists seriously. His Generation NXT Indie Concert Series, a bi-monthly hip-hop concert he hosts at Dreamz every other Sunday, gives up-and-coming artists a venue in which to perform. The concerts also give many artists a first opportunity to gauge where their music and performance skills are, as well as a first chance to make a little change doing what they love. Kamikaze gives back to the Jackson hip-hop community because, not too long ago, he was that kid looking for a place to shine. It goes a little deeper than that, though. “I want kids to know their history,” he says. On April 20, that history was marked with the 12-year anniversary of “Grey Skies,” the critically acclaimed and fanadored album by Crooked Lettaz, a collab-

oration between Kaz and David Banner. “We were young, dumb and fresh in the biz,” Kaz says. “We just made our music. It was us doing the music in its purest form.” The result was an album that is considered a hip-hop classic all over the world. “Grey Skies,” which was the first hip-hop album to get local radio play in Jackson, put Mississippi on the hip-hop map. “I want the younger generation to be familiar with ‘Grey Skies.’ If you are doing hip-hop in Mississippi, you need to be familiar with it,” Kaz says. After we were done talking outside Dreamz that night, Kaz went in and rapped one of his final shows, headlining a bill that featured a number of rappers hoping to follow the path that Kamikaze blazed in Jackson. Before he went on, I asked him if he was nervous. “Nah. I feel like I am going back to an old job,” he answered. Search for “Grey Skies Documentary” on YouTube to watch part one of the Rashad Street produced documentary film on the 12th anniversary of “Grey Skies.”

May 18 - Wednesday F. Jones Corner - David Pigott (blues lunch) Ole Tavern - Karaoke Poets II - DJ Phingaprint Char - Jason Turner 6 p.m. Pop’s Saloon - Karaoke Dreamz JXN - Wasted Wednesdays Underground 119 - Bill & Temperance (bluegrass) 8 p.m. free Hal and Mal’s - Jon Clark Fenian’s - Sean Mullady 9 p.m. free Olga’s - Ladies Night w/ Hunter Gibson 7-10 p.m. Burgers and Blues - Jesse “Guitar” Smith 5-9 p.m. Irish Frog - Haggard Collins 6:30 p.m. Brady’s - Jason Bailey 7-10 p.m. Philip’s on the Rez - Karaoke w/ DJ Mike Welty Commons - Tanzania Benefit Concert feat. The Strange Pilgrims & Front Porch Dance Co. 7-9 p.m. $7

May 19 - Thursday F. Jones Corner - Housecat (blues lunch); Amazin’ Lazy Boi Band Cherokee Inn - D’lo Trio 6:30 p.m. Ole Tavern - Ladies Night Martin’s - Ladies Night Underground 119 - Blue Mother Tupelo (blues) 8 p.m. free Dreamz JXN - Centric Thursdays Fitzgerald’s - Larry Brewer 8 p.m.-noon Hal and Mal’s - Daphanie Sigler (RR) Fenian’s - Spirits of the House 9 p.m. free 120 North Congress Street, downtown JXN - Downtown At Dusk: Men of Leisure 5-8 p.m. free Char - Larry Addison 6 p.m. Olga’s - “Tiger” Thomas Rogers 7-10 p.m.

May 20 - Friday F. Jones Corner - Jason Bailey (blues lunch); The Bailey Bros. Martin’s - Zeebo 10 p.m. Reed Pierce’s - Jeff & Jeff Band Hal & Mal’s - Vernon Bros. Pelican Cove - Emma Wynters and The Beggars No Mo’ Band Ole Tavern - Jason Turner Band Fire - Velcro Pygmies 8 p.m. $10 Jackson State University, Rose McCoy Auditorium BeanSprout Benefit Concert: Eddie Griffin, Michael Blackson, Antoine Blackman, Kwame Seigel 601-291-3647 Dreamz JXN - Can’t Feel My Face Friday Underground 119 - Sunset Series: Raphael Semmes & The Blues Machine w/Barry Leach 5-8 p.m. Vasti Jackson (blues) 9 p.m. $10

Music listings are due noon Monday to be included in print and online listings: Fenian’s - Mike and Marty 9 p.m. free McB’s - Hunter & Rick 8-11:30 p.m. F. Jones Corner - The Bailey Bros. 10 p.m.-4 a.m. $5 until midnight, $10 after Burgers and Blues - Chris Gill & The Sole Shakers 5-9 p.m. Irish Frog - Ralph Miller 6:30 p.m. Sneaky Beans - Wooden Finger, Chimney Choir 8 p.m. Brady’s - Reed Smith 7-10 p.m. Philip’s on the Rez - Jeff Maddox 6-10 p.m. Char - Larry Addison 6 p.m. MSU Riley Center, Meridian - Robert Earl Keen 7:30 p.m. $35, $29

May 21 - Saturday F. Jones Corner - Norman Clark w/ Smokestack Lightning & Jackie Bell Reed Pierce’s - Jeff & Jeff Band Ole Tavern - Lately David w/ The Swamp Babies Cultural Expressions - Gospoetry Brady’s - Karaoke Belhaven Center for the Arts - MS Community Symphonic Band & The River City Concert Band of TN 7 p.m. free Christ United Methodist Church - All Day All Night CD Release Show: This Tragic Memory, Carridale, With Open Arms, Heroes Will Be Heroes 6 p.m. $5 Suite 106 - Kerry Thomas Underground 119 - King Edward (blues) 9 p.m. $10 Hal and Mal’s - John Wooten (rest.), Fallen (RR) Fenian’s - The Amazin’ Lazy Boi Band 9 p.m. free Irish Frog - Going Away Party for Davey Irwine & Nick Blake 6:30 p.m. Philip’s on the Rez - Shadz of Grey Martin’s - Roundhouse Groove 10 p.m. Pelican Cove - Otis Lotus 6-10 p.m. Cups, Ridgeland - Ryan Pacilllo 1-3 p.m. Fire - MissUsed 9 p.m. $10 Footloose Bar & Grill - Pieces of Time (classic rock/blues) 9 p.m. Char - Mike Greenhill 7 p.m. Olga’s - Johnny Crocker 7-10 p.m. Sam’s Lounge - Bloodbird Harrington 10 p.m. Julep - Jacob Lipking

Cultural Expressions - Open Mic Poetry Night ToMara’s - Mike and Marty’s Jam Session Fuego Cantina - Buddy & The Squids 4 p.m. free Burgers and Blues - Hunter Cheatham 5-9 p.m. Philip’s on the Rez - Shades of Green 4-8 p.m. Fenian’s - Monthly Ceili w/ The Jackson Irish Dancers 2 p.m. free Char - Bob Pieczyk (brunch) 11 a.m., Tommy Vaughn 6 p.m. Fusion Coffeehouse - Jazz Series: Raphael Semmes, Todd Bobo, Terry Miller, Bruce Carter 3-5 p.m.

May 23 - Monday Hal and Mal’s - Central MS Blues Society 7 p.m. $5 Martin’s - Open Mic Free Jam Fenian’s - Karaoke Irish Frog - Karaoke w/ Kokomo Joe Burgers and Blues - Morrison Music Monday: Garage Band Night 6:30-9:30 p.m. Char - Tommy Vaughn 6 p.m.

May 24 - Tuesday Hal and Mal’s - Pub Quiz Martin’s - Late Night Karaoke Ole Tavern - Elegant Trainwreck Presents: Destry w/ Communipaw Fitzgerald’s - Hunter and Rick 8 p.m. Burgers and Blues - Jesse “Guitar” Smith 5-9 p.m. Char - Larry Addison 6 p.m.



ladies night LADIES PAY $5, DRINK FREE







F. Jones Corner - Jason Bailey (blues lunch) Ole Tavern - Karaoke Poets II - DJ Phingaprint Fenian’s - Jarrett Smith Pop’s Saloon - Karaoke Dreamz JXN - Wasted Wednesdays Regency - Snazz Underground 119 - Bill & Temperance (bluegrass) Hal and Mal’s - Charly Sayles Olga’s - Ladies Night w/ Hunter Gibson 7 p.m. Burgers and Blues - Jesse “Guitar” Smith 5-9 p.m. Irish Frog - Haggard Collins 6:30 p.m. Philip’s on the Rez - Karaoke w/ DJ Mike Char - Jason Turner 6 p.m. Send music listings to Natalie Long at or fax to 601-510-9019 by noon Monday for inclusion in the next issue. Music listings must be received by the Friday before the new issue to be considered for 8 Days picks.

5/19 Bon Jovi Live 2011 Tour – FedEx Forum, Memphis, Tenn. 5/21-22 Hill Country Harmonica – Foxfire Ranch, Waterford, Tenn. 5/25 Kenny Chesney – Tuscaloosa Amphitheater, Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Open for dinner Sat. 4-10pm thursday

MAY 19




MAY 20

Jason Turner Band w/ Logan Mason saturday

MAY 21

Lately David w/ Swamp Babies monday

MAY 23


2-for-1 Drafts tuesday

May 25 - Wednesday

May 22 - Sunday Sophia’s, Fairview Inn - Knight Bruce 11 a.m. (brunch) King Edward Hotel - Howard Jones Jazz 11 a.m. (brunch) Fitzgerald’s - Andy Hardwick (brunch) 11 a.m. Table 100 - Raphael Semmes (jazz brunch) 11:30 a.m.- 1:30 p.m.


Weekly Lunch Specials







MAY 24


Destry w/ Communipaw

2 for 1 PBR/High Life


MAY 25







ladies night LADIES PAY $5, DRINK FREE


Live MUsic


214 S. State St. • 601.354.9712 dOWntOWn jAckSOn


MAY 26



MAY 27

River City Tanlines w/ Danny Choctaw and The Deathmarch FREE WiFi Open Mon-Sat, Kitchen open Mon-Fri 11 am-10 pm & Sat 4-10 pm




Wednesday, May 18th


(Bluegrass) 8-11, No Cover Thursday, May 19th

BLUE MOTHER TUPELO (Funk) 8-11, No Cover Friday, May 20th



(Blues) 9-1, $10 Cover

Saturday, May 21st

LUCKY HAND BLUES BAND FEATURING NORMAN CLARK (Blues) 9-1, $10 Cover Wednesday, May 25th


(Bluegrass) 8-11, No Cover Thursday, May 26th


(Dixieland Jazz) 8-11, No Cover

May 18 - 24, 2011

Friday, May 27th


JASON MARSALIS (Jazz) 9-1, $10 Cover

119 S. President Street 601.352.2322

88 Keys 3645 Hwy. 80 W in Metrocenter, Jackson, 601-352-7342 Alamo Theatre 333 N. Farish St, Jackson, 601-352-3365 Alley Cats 165 W. Peace St., Canton, 601-855-2225 Alumni House Sports Grill 574 Hwy. 50, Ridgeland, 601-855-2225 Ameristar Casino, Bottleneck Blues Bar 4146 Washington St., Vicksburg, 800-700-7770 Beau Rivage Casino 875 Beach Blvd., Biloxi, 800-566-7469 Belhaven University Center for the Arts 835 Riverside Dr, Jackson, 601968-5930 Black Diamond 5015 I-55 N., Jackson, 601-982-9437 Bottoms Up 3911 Northview Dr., Jackson, 601-981-2188 Buffalo Wild Wings 808 Lake Harbour Dr., Ridgeland, 601-856-0789 Brady’s Bar and Grill 6720 Old Canton Rd, Ridgeland, 601-812-6862 Burgers and Blues 1060 E. County Line Rd., Ridgeland, 601-899-0038 Capri-Pix Theatre 3021 N. State St., Jackson, 601-981-9606 Central City Complex 609 Woodrow Wilson Dr., Jackson, 601-352-9075 Cerami’s 5417 Highway 25, Flowood, 601-919-2829 Char Restaurant 4500 I-55, Highland Village, Jackson, 601-956-9562 Cherokee Inn 1410 Old Square Rd., Jackson, 601-362-6388 Club 43 Hwy 43, Canton, 601-654-3419, 601-859-0512 Club Metro Reloaded 4670 Highway 80 West, Jackson Club O’Hara 364 Monticello St., Hazlehurst, 601-894-5674 Congress Street Bar & Grill 120 N. Congress St., Jackson, 601-968-0857 The Commons Gallery 719 N. Congress St.,Jackosn, 601-352-3399 Couples Entertainment Center 4511 Byrd Drive, Jackson, 601-923-9977 Crawdad Hole 1150 Lakeland Dr., Jackson, 601-982-9299 Crickett’s Lounge 4370 Hwy 80 West, Jackson, 601-922-0500 Crossroads Bar & Lounge 3040 Livingston Rd., Jackson, 601-984-3755 (blues) Cultural Expressions 147 Millsaps Ave., Jackson, 601-665-0815 (neo-soul/hiphop) Cups in Fondren 2757 Old Canton Road, Jackson, 601-362-7422 (acoustic/pop) Cups in the Quarter 1855 Lakeland Dr., Jackson, 601-981-9088 Davidson’s Corner Market 108 W. Center St., Canton, 601-855-2268 (pop/rock) Debo’s 180 Raymond Road, Jackson, 601-346-8283 Diamond Jack’s Casino 3990 Washington Street, Vicksburg, 1-877-711-0677 Dick and Jane’s 206 W. Capitol St., Jackson, 601-944-0123 Dixie Diamond 1306 Washington Street, Vicksburg, 601-638-6297 Dreamz Jxn 426 West Capitol Street, Jackson, 601-979-3994 Electric Cowboy 6107 Ridgewood Rd., Jackson, 601-899-5333 (country/ rock/dance) Executive Place 2440 Bailey Ave., Jackson, 601-987-4014 F. Jones Corner 303 N. Farish St., Jackson, 601-983-1148 Fenian’s 901 E. Fortification Street, Jackson, 601-948-0055 (rock/Irish/folk) Fire 209 Commerce St., Jackson, 601592-1000 (rock/dance/dj) Final Destination 5428 Robinson Rd. Ext., Jackson, (pop/rock/blues) Fitzgerald’s Martini Bar 1001 E. County Line Road, Jackson, 601-957-2800 Flood’s Bar and Grill 2460 Bailey Ave., Jackson, 601-713-4094 Footloose Bar and Grill 4661 Hwy 80 West, Jackson, 601-922-9944 Freelon’s Bar And Groove 440 N. Mill St., Jackson, 601-353-5357 (hip-hop) Fuego Mexican Cantina 318 S. State St., Jackson, 601-592-1000

The JFP music listings are dedicated to founding music listings editor Herman Snell, who passed away in 2010. Fusion Coffeehouse Highland Colony Parkway, Ridgeland, 601-856-6001 Gold Strike Casino 1010 Casino Center Drive, Robinsonville, 888-245-7529 Grand Casino Biloxi 280 Beach Boulevard, Biloxi, 228-436-2946 Grand Casino Tunica 13615 Old Highway 61 North, Robinsonville, 800-39GRAND The Green Room 444 Bounds St., Jackson, 601-713-3444 Ground Zero Blues Club 0 Blues Alley, Clarksdale, 662-621-9009 Hal & Mal’s 200 S. Commerce St., Jackson, 601-948-0888 (pop/rock/blues) Hamp’s Place 3028 W. Northside Dr., Jackson, 601-981-4110 (dance/dj) Hard Rock Biloxi 777 Beach Blvd., Biloxi, 228-374-ROCK Hat & Cane 1115 E. McDowell Rd., Jackson, 601-352-0411 Hauté Pig 1856 Main St., Madison, 601853-8538 Here We Go Again 3002 Terry Road, Jackson, 601-373-1520 Horizon Casino, Mulberry Lounge 1310 Mulberry St., Vicksburg, 800843-2343 Horseshoe Bar 5049 Hwy 80 West, Jackson, 601-922-6191 Horseshoe Casino Tunica, 800-303-7463 The Hunt Club 1525 Ellis Ave., Jackson, 601-944-1150 Huntington Grille 1001 E. County Line Rd., Jackson, 601-957-1515 The Irish Frog 5o7 Springridge Rd., Clinton, 601-448-4185 JC’s 425 North Mart Plaza, Jackson, 601-362-3108 Jackson Convention Complex 105 E. Pascagoula St.. Jackson, 601-960-2321 Julep Restaurant and Bar 105 Highland Village, Jackson, 601-362-1411 Kathryn’s Steaks and Seafood 6800 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland. 601956-2803 King Edward Hotel 235 W. Capitol St., Jackson, 601-353-5464 Knokers Sports Cafe 4586 Clinton Blvd., Jackson Koinonia Coffee House 136 S. Adams St., Suite C, Jackson, 601-960-3008 Kristos 971 Madison Ave., Madison, 601-605-2266 LaRae’s 210 Parcel Dr., Jackson, 601-944-0660 Last Call Sports Grill 1428 Old Square Road, Jackson, 601-713-2700 Level 3 105 E. Capitol St., Jackson The Library Bar & Grill 120 S. 11th St., Oxford, 662-234-1411 The Loft 1306 A. Washington St., Vicksburg, 601-629-6188 The Lyric Oxford 1006 Van Buren Ave., Oxford. 662-234-5333 Main Event Sports Bar & Grill 4659 Hwy 80 West, Jackson, 601-922-9987 Manda’s Pub 614 Clay Street, Vicksburg, 601-638-6607 Martin’s Lounge 214 S. State St., Jackson, 601-354-9712 (rock/jam/blues) Martini Room 420 Greymont Ave., Jackson, 601-969-2141 McB’s Restaurant 815 Lake Harbor Dr., Ridgeland, 601-956-8362 (pop/rock) Mellow Mushroom 275 Dogwood Blvd., Flowood, 601-992-7499 Mississippi Academy of Ancient Music 103 Magnolia, Edwards, 601-977-7736 Mississippi Coliseum 1207 Mississippi St., Jackson, 601-353-0603 Mississippi Opera P.O. Box 1551, Jackson, 877-MSOPERA, 601-960-2300 Mississippi Opry 2420 Old Brandon Rd., Brandon, 601-331-6672 Mississippi Symphony Orchestra 201 E. Pascagoula St., Jackson, 800-8985050 Mississippi Veterans Memorial Stadium 2531 N. State St., Jackson, 601-354-6021 Monte’s Steak and Seafood 1855 Lakeland Dr., Jackson, 601-362-8182 Mugshots 1855 Lakeland Dr., Jackson, 601-713-0383 North Midtown Arts Center 121 Millsaps Ave., Jackson, 601-497-7454 Okasions 1766 Ellis Avenue, Jackson, 601-373-4037

Ole Tavern on George Street 416 George St., Jackson, 601-960-2700 Olga’s 4760 I-55 North, Jackson, 601-366-1366 (piano) One Blu Wall 2906 N State St., Jackson, 601-713-1224 The Parker House 104 S.E. Madison Drive, Ridgeland, 601-856-0043 Peaches Restaurant 327 N. Farish St., Jackson, 601-354-9267 Pelican Cove 3999A Harborwalk Dr., Ridgeland, 601-605-1865 Philip’s on the Rez 135 Madison Landing Cir., Ridgeland, 601-856-1680 Pig Ear Saloon 160 Weisenberger Rd., Gluckstadt, 601-898-8090 Pig Willies 1416 Washington St., Vicksburg, 601-634-6872 Poets II 1855 Lakeland Dr., 601-364-9411 Pool Hall 3716 I-55 North Frontage Rd., Jackson, 601-713-2708 Pop’s Saloon 2636 Gallatin St., Jackson, 601-961-4747 (country) The Pub Hwy. 51, Ridgeland, 601-898-2225 The Quarter Bistro & Piano Bar 1855 Lakeland Dr., Jackson, 601-362-4900 Que Sera Sera 2801 N. State St., Jackson, 601-981-2520 Queen of Hearts 2243 Martin Luther King Dr., Jackson, 601-454-9401 Reed Pierce’s 6791 Siwell Rd., Byram, 601-376-0777, 601-376-4677 Regency Hotel Restaurant & Bar 420 Greymont Ave., Jackson, 601-969-2141 RJ Barrel 111 N. Union 601-667-3518 Roberts Walthall Hotel 225 E. Capitol St., Jackson, 601-948-6161 Sal and Mookie’s 565 Taylor St. 601368-1919 Sam’s Lounge 5035 I-55 N. Frontage Rd., Jackson, 601-983-2526 Sam’s Town Casino 1477 Casino Strip Blvd., Robinsonville, 800-456-0711 Scrooge’s 5829 Ridgewood Rd., Jackson, 601-206-1211 Shuckers on the Reservoir 116 Conestoga Rd., Ridgeland, 601-853-0105 Silver Star Casino Hwy. 16 West, Choctaw, 800-557-0711 Sippi Citi 2649 Livingston Rd, Jackson, 601-624-6521 (LGBT club) Sneaky Beans 2914 N. State St., Jackson, 601-487-6349 Soop’s The Ultimate 1205 Country Club Dr., Jackson, 601-922-1402 (blues) Soulshine Pizza 1139 Old Fannin Rd., Brandon, 601-919-2000 Soulshine Pizza 1111 Highland Colony Parkway, Ridgeland, 601-856-8646 Sportsman’s Lodge 1220 E. Northside Dr. at I-55, Jackson, 601-366-5441 Stone Pony Oyster Bar 116 Commercial Parkway, Canton, 601-859-0801 Suite 106 106 Wilmington St., Jackson, 601-371-8003 Table 100 100 Ridge Way, Flowood, 601420-4202 Thalia Mara Hall 255 E. Pascagoula St., Jackson, 601-960-1535 Thirsty Hippo 211 Main St., Hattiesburg, 601-583-9188 Time Out Sports Bar 6270 Old Canton Rd., Jackson, 601-978-1839 ToMara’s 9347 Hwy 18 West, Jackson, 601-502-8580 (pop/rock) Top Notch Sports Bar 109 Culley Dr., Jackson, 601- 362-0706 Two Rivers Restaurant 1537 W. Peace St., Canton, 601-859-9979 (blues) Two Sisters Kitchen 707 N. Congress St., Jackson, 601-353-1180 Under the Boardwalk 2560 Terry Rd., Jackson, 601-371-7332 Underground 119 119 S. President St., Jackson, 601-352-2322 VFW Post 9832 4610 Sunray Drive, Jackson, 601-982-9925 Vicksburg Convention Center 1600 Mulberry Street, Vicksburg, 866-822-6338 Walker’s Drive-In 3016 N. State St., Jackson, 601-982-2633 (jazz/pop/folk) Whistle Stop Corner Cafe 133 N. Ragsdale Ave., Hazlehurst, 601-894-9901 Wired Expresso Cafe 115 N. State St., 601-500-7800

Tuesday June 7 at 7:30 Jackson Convention Complex

Reserved Seating on Sale Now at the Coliseum Box Office, BeBop Records, Charge-By-Phone at 800-745-3000, Online at


SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)

GEMINI (May 21-June 20)

What’s going to happen for you in the coming week will be the metaphorical equivalent of gaining the ability to see infrared light with your naked eye or to detect the ultrasonic sounds that only dogs can hear. With this virtual superpower at your disposal, you just may be able to figure out how people’s unspoken feelings have been covertly affecting your destiny. You will intuit lucid inklings about the probable future that will help you adjust your decisions. You might even tune in to certain secrets that your own unconscious mind has been hiding from you.

Are you desperate for more companionship? Have your night dreams been crammed with soulful exchanges? Are you prowling around like a lusty panther, fantasizing about every candidate who’s even remotely appealing? If so, I have some advice from the poet Rumi: “Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.” In other words, Sagittarius: To foster the search for intimate connection, identify the patterns within yourself that are interfering with it. By the way, this is good counsel even if you’re only moderately hungry for closer connection.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19) CANCER (June 21-July 22)

Devilish laughter revels in chaos, says Loyola University philosophy professor John Clark. “It’s an assault on excessive order, authority and seriousness.” Angelic laughter, on the other hand, “expresses delight in the wondrousness of life and in the mystery of the order and fitness of things.” I’d like to suggest, Cancerian, that the time is ripe for you to revel equally in the devilish and the angelic varieties of laughter. So get out there and seek funny experiences that dissolve your fixations and celebrate your life’s crazy beauty. The healing that results could be spectacular.

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22)

Last year a group of wealthy Germans asked their government to require them to pay higher taxes. “We have more money than we need,” the 44 multi-millionaires said. They wanted to help alleviate the ravages of poverty and unemployment. I urge you to make a comparable move, Leo. In what part of your life do you have more abundance than most people? Are there practical ways you could express your gratitude for the extravagant blessings life has given you? I think you’ll find that raising your levels of generosity will ultimately lead to you receiving more love. (Here’s more on the story about rich Germans:

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)

“I don’t know what I’m looking for, but I know that I just want to look some more,” Brendan Benson sings in “What I’m Looking For,” his bouncy pop song. I suspect

those words could come out of your mouth these days, Virgo. I worry that you’ve become so enamored with the endless quest that you’ve lost sight of what the object of the quest is. You almost seem to prefer the glamour of the restless runaround—as painful as it sometimes is. That probably means you’re at least somewhat out of touch with the evolution of your primal desires. Check back in with the raw, throbbing source, please.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)

When it’s flood season, the Amazon River rises as much as 60 feet. At that time, the adjoining forests earn their name—várzea, a Portuguese word meaning “flooded forests.” The river’s fish wander far and wide, venturing into the expanded territory to eat fruit from the trees. In the coming weeks, Libra, I imagine you’ll be like those fish: taking advantage of the opportunities provided by a natural windfall.

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)

Provocative new influences are headed your way from a distance. Meanwhile, familiar influences that are close at hand are about to burst forth with fresh offerings. It’s likely that both the far away and nearby phenomena will arrive on the scene at around the same time and with a similar intensity. Try not to get into a situation where they will compete with or oppose each other. Your best bet will be to put them both into play in ways that allow them to complement each other.

If you live in the United States, your chocolate almost certainly contains insect parts. The Food and Drug Administration understands that the mechanisms involved in making chocolate usually suck small passers-by into the works, which is why it allows manufacturers to include up to 60 bug fragments per 100 grams of chocolate. A lot of basically positive influences have a similar principle at work: Unpalatable ingredients get mixed in with the tasty stuff, but not in such abundance that they taint the experience. This week, Capricorn, you may be unusually tuned in to the unpalatable side of some good things in your life. Don’t overreact.

AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)

I went to a literary event in which young poets read their work. One poet, Shelby Hinte, began her segment by talking about what inspires her. “I like to write about women who are more interesting than me,” she said. I was full of admiration for that perspective. It suggests she’s cultivating the abundant curiosity and humility that I think are essential to the creative process. As you slip deeper into an extra fertile phase of your personal cycle, Aquarius, I urge you to adopt a similar voracity for influences that surprise and fascinate and educate you.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20)

“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic,” said science fiction writer Arthur C.

Clarke. So in other words, if you were able to time-travel back to medieval England with a laptop computer and a solar-powered battery charger, the natives might regard you as a wizard with supernatural powers. I think there will soon be a similar principle at work in your life, Pisces: You will get a vivid glimpse of amazing things you could accomplish in the future. They may seem fantastic and impossible to the person you are right now—tantamount to magic. Be alert for expanded states of awareness that reveal who you could ultimately become.

ARIES (March 21-April 19)

Today I received this email: “Dear Chosen One: My name is Boopsky, also known as ‘The Impossible.’ I rule a small kingdom that exists in a secret place—an island with abundant riches and rhinoceros playgrounds. To make a long story short, you have won our ‘naked’ lottery. Please come visit us to claim your prizes. We will carve a statue of you out of butter and strawberry jam. Your funny ways of walking and talking will be imitated by all of our citizens. Then our reincarnation chorus will caress and sing songs to you as a monarch on a pile of TVs. Can’t wait to see you be so happy!” I suspect you may soon receive an invitation as puzzling as this one, Aries—an apparent blessing that carries mixed messages or odd undertones. My suggestion is to hold off on accepting it until you find out more about it. Meanwhile, make sure it doesn’t distract you from taking advantage of a less flashy but more practical opportunity.

TAURUS (April 20-May 20)

To capture the spirit of the landscapes he painted, French artist Claude Monet used to work outside in all kinds of weather. When I look at masterpieces like “Snow at Argenteuil” or “The Magpie, Snow Effect, Outskirts of Honfleur,” I like to imagine he was so engrossed in his work that he barely even registered the bitter chill. I bet you’ll be able to achieve a similar intensity of focus in the coming week, Taurus. You could be so thoroughly absorbed in an act of creation or a ritual of transition or an attempt at transformation, that you will be virtually exempt from any discomfort or inconvenience that might be involved.

Talk about the things you’d do if you lived for a week without consuming any Internet, TV, videos, radio, films, newspapers or magazines. Write:

Last Week’s Answers

BY MATT JONES 62 Singer Furtado 63 Little bugs 64 Friend’s opposite


“Not What You Think”--be prepared for some criticism.

May 18 - 24, 2011



1 Little mischief maker 4 Science magazine that folded in the 1990s 8 Make a haze around 13 Like one theory that Shakespeare didn’t write all his works 15 Eddie Bunker, in “Reservoir Dogs” 16 It’s harvested to make syrup 17 Fill full of bubbles 18 What lexicographers do most of the time? 20 Social conclusion? 23 What some people are slow on 24 Fair-hiring abbr. 25 They get worn on tires 28 Collection of Hindu writings 30 Laser pointer used by that jerk in

the audience? 35 Yours, in French 36 ___-Man Chan (“Survivor: Fiji” participant) 37 Godsmack lead vocalist Sully ___ 38 Turn a digit into a zero with your bare hands? 42 Orlando Magic coach Van Gundy 43 DA’s undergrad coursework 44 Quad bike, in the States 47 Sex ed hygiene subject 50 “Hold On Tight” prog-rock band 51 Friends that share in your tacky guilty pleasures? 55 Capital of Canada 56 Get there in no time? 60 2010 solo album from Nick Jonas 61 Some desertscapes

1 Watson’s creator 2 Baby goat sound 3 Angel dust 4 R.E.M.’s “The ___ Love” 5 Pageant owned by Donald Trump 6 Spingarn Medal awarders 7 Brainstorming session ideas, e.g. 8 Made some suds 9 River in Spain 10 Boater’s emergency kit item 11 Top 12 Honkers at a pond 14 Falling apart 15 Cover-up artist? 19 Enjoy, in England 20 “___ be my pleasure!” 21 Threesome 22 Estonia, in Estonian (hidden in BEE STING) 26 Determined by ___ of the coin 27 Falls fast asleep 29 Eagle’s nest 31 Baby swan 32 Sorority letter 33 One may be obtuse 34 Taj ___ 39 2001 movie with Sean Penn and Dakota Fanning 40 Military shoulder decoration 41 Low card 44 Rock group System of ___ 45 Give a percentage 46 Acronym for aircraft that can depart from short runways (anagram of VOLTS) 48 Board (a bus) 49 Thabo ___ (South African president, 1999-2008) 52 It gets wagged

53 Rick on the radio 54 Letters on a sunscreen bottle 57 Not quite right 58 ___ Speedwagon 59 Mao ___-tung ©2011 Jonesin’ Crosswords (editor@

For answers to this puzzle, call: 1900-226-2800, 99 cents per minute. Must be 18+. Or to bill to your credit card, call: 1-800-655-6548. Reference puzzle #0513.


Last Week’s Answers 5 2 7 8 6 9 3 1 6 4 5 1 3 9 8 1 2 2 8 9 4 4 3 6 2 7 1 9 3 8 5 2 8 5 7 3 1

6 9 7 1 7 2 2 9 4 8 7 9 8 6 2 4 3 5 1 7 6 2 1 2 6 1 8 9 4 1 5 5 8 9 3

7 8 6 9

2 4 1 5

2 8 8 9 1 4 7 6 4 8 2 1

“Greater-Than Sudoku” For this “Greater-Than Sudoku,” I’m not givin’ you ANY numbers to start off with! Adjoining squares in the grid’s 3x3 boxes have a greater-than sign (>) telling you which of the two numbers in those squares is larger. Fill in every square with a number from 1-9 using the greater-than signs as a guide. When you’re done, as in a normal Sudoku, every row, column, and 3x3 box will contain the numbers 1-9 exactly one time. (Solving hint: try to look for the 1’s and 9’s in each box first, then move on to the 2’s and 8’s, and so on).

LUNCH SPECIALS EVERY DAY starting at $7.95



Friday, May 20














Ladies Night Ladies drink free until midnight well drinks only Guys drink 2-4-1 well drinks and domestic beer until 10:00



Thursday, May 19

Saturday, May 21

Hip Kitty 6107 Ridgewood Rd Jackson, Ms


Jason Bailey (blues Lunch)

The Bailey Bros

10PM $5 COVER UNTIL Midnight $10 Cover after midnight


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Saturday, may 21st


Norman Clark With Smokestack Lightning & Jackie Bell

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10PM NO COVER UNTIL Midnight $10 Cover after midnight

Thursday, may 26th

Jesse Robinsonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Birthday BASH 7:oo pm - 12:00am


 @7A3/5/7<AB6SZ^7a=\BVSEOg A33B63@µ1]c\b`gA]\U ! A719>C>>73Aµ@W^bWRS " /@B=42G7<5µ2WSB`gW\U # 4==4756B3@Aµ@]^S $ B6@332/GA5@/13:]abW\G]c % A7FF/;µ:WSa]TbVS0SOcbWTcZ>S]^ZS & A/:7D/0OROaa ' /23:7B/AE/GAWQY  0:/19AB=<3163@@G EVWbSB`OaV;WZZW]\OW`S



FRIDAY - May 20 & SATURDAY - May 21 The Colonels

$5 Domestic Draft Pitchers 2 for 1 Ribs 50¢ Boneless Wings

Saturday, May 21


BAR OPEN TUESDAY - MAY 24 2 for 1 Domestics Free Pool from 7-10 WEDNESDAY - MAY 25 KARAOKE 2636 S. Gallatin Jackson, MS 39204



Playoffs Special


T- Baby and The Soul Survivors Blues Band 9pm - 1pm

Happy hour

Mon - Sat | 2pm - 7pm 2 for 1 All Mixed Drinks, $1 Off Draft & Wine and 50¢ Boneless Wings

1428 Old Square Road in Jackson 601.713.2700

friday, may 20th


by Katie Stewart


Coping with Food Allergies 2003-2011, Best of Jackson

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



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This pizza doesn’t suffer from lack of tomatoes. Caramelized onions, ricotta and artichokes are more than enough.

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• Fresh Seafood Daily

M-F -, - S - C A

.. |  H M

bout four years ago, I finally realized that the health problems I had been having for years would recur every time I ate tomatoes or dishes in which tomatoes were prominent. Salsa, spaghetti and tomato-based soups all gave me terrible allergic reactions such as swollen eyelids and stomach aches. Frustrated, I visited an allergist to confirm my self-diagnosis. After testing me for a tomato allergy, it came back negative. But the doctor warned me that I was probably still allergic. It turns out that our bodies can react negatively to foods in many different ways, but he could only test for one particular way. He urged me to eliminate tomatoes. I took his advice, and for years now I have been completely tomato-free. It’s been an interesting experience, and I’ve gained a lot of sympathy for those with much worse allergy conditions. Here’s some things I’ve learned: • Focus on your health, not on what you’re giving up. Do I wish that I could eat spaghetti and tomato soup? Of course. In the end, however, I am happier and healthier knowing that I’m not risking a reaction. • Speak up. Don’t be afraid to tell people about your allergy. Family, friends and restaurants wait staff won’t always know or remember. Because tomatoes often appear as flavoring in dishes where you don’t expect them, I have to mention it every time I’m not doing the cooking. I’ve learned that no one minds. • Get creative. I can’t eat pizza with

traditional red sauce, but I have made some incredible pizza using alternative ingredients. I’ve cooked with everything from white sauce to artichokes. The possibilities are endless. • Eliminate other problem ingredients. My allergy has meant that I have to read every single label food I buy. This necessity has actually translated into much better health all around. Since I’m reading the ingredients, I can also avoid high-fructose corn syrup, extra soy, preservatives, artificial flavorings and the like. My awareness was forced on me by my allergy, but it has invited me to choose a more health-conscious attitude. In the end, I’m actually thankful for my allergy. I’ve gained consistent well-being without painful reactions. And that is something I

TOMATO-FREE RICOTTA CHEESE PIZZA 2 tablespoons olive oil 2 cups red onions, thinly sliced 1-1/2 teaspoons golden brown sugar 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar Pinch of dried crushed red pepper 1 cup ricotta cheese 1 or 2 6-ounce jars marinated artichoke hearts, well drained, coarsely chopped Pizza dough for one pizza (homemade or store bought)

Heat one tablespoon oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and sugar. Cook until dark brown and tender, stirring frequently, about 16 minutes. Mix in vinegar and crushed pepper. Cook until mixture is thick, about 1 to 2 minutes more. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Roll pizza dough out onto the back of a baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal. Brush with remaining 1 tablespoon of oil. Sprinkle with salt. Spread onion mixture over the crust. Dollop ricotta all over the onion layer, and top with slices of artichoke hearts. Bake until caramelized and crusty, about 10 to 12 minutes.

Royal Cocktails by ShaWanda Jacome


ou may not be royalty, but that shouldn’t stop you from adding a little pizzazz to your summer wedding. Consider adding these royal-themed drinks to your bar menu. They’re provided by in honor of the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. FILE PHOTO



2 ounces cranberry juice 1 teaspoon sugar 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 ounce vodka

Place all ingredients in shaker with ice. Shake. Strain into a martini glass.


7 parts champagne 1 part framboise or creme de cassis

Fill a glass three-quarters full with champagne. Add a few drops of framboise or creme de cassis. One “part” is proportional to size of drink you are making. For example a margarita is two parts tequila, one part triple sec and one part lime juice; those parts can be a half ounce, one ounce, two ounces or more, depending on how much you want to make. A Kir is a popular French cocktail made with crème de cassis (black currant liqueur) and topped up with white wine, according to “The Cook’s Essential Kitchen Dictionary: A Complete Culinary Resource” by Jacques Rolland (Robert Rose, 2004, $19.95). The drink, originally called the blanc-cassis, is supposedly named after Félix Kir, once the mayor of Dijon in Burgundy.


1-1/2 ounces gin 1/2-ounce Grand Marnier 2 dashes grenadine 1 ounce passion fruit syrup

Mix together with crushed ice in a glass, and garnish with mint leaves.

Spring in a cup! DAISY MAE A vanilla frappe sweetened with all natural strawberry Monin. TRIPLE CHOCOLATE FRAPPE A latte frappe made with Ghirardelli white chocolate, Hershey’s chocolate and all natural swiss chocolate Monin. Topped with whipped cream and Hershey’s chocolate.

SUGAR FREE ALMOND COOKIE LATTE Non fat cafe latte made with sugar free almond and sugar free vanilla Monin. BANANA CREAM PIE AU LAIT Cafe au lait sweetened with Ghirardelli white chocolate and all natural banana and vanilla May 18 - 24, 2011

Monin. Topped with whipped cream.



Cafe au lait sweetened with creamy caramel, Hershey’s chocolate and all natural praline Monin. Topped with whipped cream and drizzled with caramel and chocolate.


A cafe latte made with all natural vanilla Monin and honey.

Hurry! Cups Spring drinks are only available for a limited time.

5A44 FX5X

Eslava’s Grille Seafood, Steaks and Pasta

By popular demand, we have added Shrimp Scampi to our menu!

NOW OPEN Next to Tullos Chiropractic

¡Lunch Specials Served Everyday! Mon-Sat | 11-2 & 4-10

3716 I-55 N Jackson, Ms phone: 601-487-8370 fax: 601-487-8371


Super Card 4654 McWillie Dr., Jackson|Hours: Mon.-Thurs. 10AM-9PM Friday & Saturday 10AM-12AM, Sunday 11AM-5PM

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

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

Ladies Night

is Thursday Night

Buy 1 Get 1 Free Martinis

Live Music

No cover.

Friday May 20:

Live Music

Saturday May 21:



11 a.m. - 2 p.m. A Metro-Area Tradition Since 1977

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

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


pa i d a dv e rt i s e m e n t

’Keefe, Whistler, Picasso, Welty…all are masters in their art field and all are on display at the Mississippi Museum of Art. There is a new maestro at the museum, but you won’t find his work hanging on wall. The culinary artistry of Chef Louis Bruno is now on display at The Palette Café by Viking. If you were a fan of his signature restaurant, Bruno’s, a blend of Spanish and Caribbean-inspired cuisine that was highlighted in the New York Times travel section, you will be pleased to see similar dishes at The Palette Café with the same cool and eclectic style that made him a Mississippi household name. Not to mention the one-time executive Louis Bruno chef at the Mississippi Governor’s Mansion under the Kirk Fordice Administration. When The Palette Café opened in September of 1979, in the Mississippi Museum of Art’s former home at the Mississippi Arts Center, a modest lunch was available and served by volunteer waitresses. Now located in the new Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired Museum home, the Palette Café serves a beautiful blend of classic, Southern dishes mixed with new, health-inspired plates that only a culinary master such as Bruno can create. From soup and salads to sandwiches and panini, there is something for every palate. Even the budding artist will be satisfied with a full children’s menu. Start your visit or workday off with fresh baked breakfast breads or visit for an afternoon snack. Finish your meal or just treat yourself to one of Bruno’s artful, homemade desserts. What is unique about the Palette Café is the use of fresh, local ingredients combined with international recipes to create a one-of-a-kind experience as artistic as the paintings on the wall. Bruno hopes not just to make The Palette Café a place for museum visitors to enjoy, but to create a true downtown destination for all of Jackson. With the addition of the Museum’s art garden, Bruno will be able to create a fun atmosphere, perfect for parties and downtown events seasoned with tasty, quality cuisine. If you are looking for the perfect place to host your wedding reception or special event, look no further than the Mississippi Museum of Art. From six to six hundred, the Museum can easily accommodate everything from a large gala to a more intimate affair. From paella parties in the garden to kids’ cooking classes, Bruno is transforming attraction cuisine as we know it. So whether you’re visiting a Picasso or viewing a Welty, make sure you include a master of cuisine in your visit to the Museum. Visit The Palette Café by Viking Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

6720 Old Canton Rd., Ridgeland | 601.812.6862


Look Fabulous For Summer




622 Duling Ave. #206 Jackson, MS in Historic Fondren 601-982-5313 Tues. - Fri.: 10a.m. - 7p.m. Sat.: 10a.m. - 5p.m.



Cakes and Cupcakes for ALL Occasions!

Owner - Dani Mitchell Turk, featured on the Food Networkâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Ultimate Recipe Showdown Photo by Hull Portraits

4950 Old Canton Road Jackson, MS 39211 Phone: 601-991-2253



May 18 - 24, 2011

If you have a wedding coming up and youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d like to be profiled in hitched,


Contact the JFP Hitched staff at 601-853-3299 â&#x20AC;¢ 398 Hwy. 51 â&#x20AC;¢ Ridgeland


wedding column


Eco-Honeymoons by Holly Perkins


n your big day, don’t step out on the dance floor with two left feet. Instead, invest a little money and time to make your first dance together as husband and wife a thing of grace and beauty.


Applause Dance Factory (242 Stephens St., Ridgeland, 601856-6168) has instructors in many dance styles, including ballroom, Latin and swing. They will work with the couple to choreograph their dance to match whichever song they choose for their first dance. Mississippi Dance Connection Ballroom Dance Center (306 N. Bierdeman Road, Pearl, 601-932-2374) offers a basic wedding package of five dance lessons for $325, or the couple can design their own. Instructors tailor dance lessons to the couple’s music selection. Instructors will also help the couple pick a song if they’re having trouble.

Salsa Mississippi Studio and Club (605 Duling Ave.., 601213-6355) offers private classes for any type of dance. Although they mainly teach salsa, they have instructors fully trained in an array of ballroom dance styles. Strictly Dancing Ballroom Studio (953 North State St., 601-944-1315) offers a wedding package of 10 private lessons and two hours of group dance for $250. Instructors teach ballroom, Latin, swing dance, country and other couple dances. They base choreography on the song selection—waltz is most popular, but the foxtrot, salsa and the tango are growing in popularity.

mentally conscious, and eco-friendly hotels are sprouting up everywhere. Some hotels are taking steps toward being “green,” like the Orchard Garden Inn in San Francisco, built from the ground up in an eco-friendly way, and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certified. Other hotels are taking smaller steps, such as 70 Park Avenue Hotel in New York City, which offers discounts for hybrid drivers and recycles its kitchen oil as bio-diesel.

Eco-friendly and Eco-adventure Honeymoon Resources McGehee Cruise and Vacation Highland Village, Suite 104, 4500 Interstate 55 N., 601-981-7070, VIP Travel 3000 Old Canton Road, Suite 250, 601-321-1939,

Register Locally

Wedding Dance Lessons by Jesse Crow

Cori and Mark Sullivan of Jackson spent their 2009 ecohoneymoon in Costa Rica.


at places that were very environmentally conscious,” Cori says. They chose to travel to one of the most environmentally conscious destinations in the world: Costa Rica. The country follows the Certification for Sustainable Tourism Program (CST), which ranks tourist spots on a 1 to 5 scale based on their “natural, cultural and social resource management.” CST allowed the Sullivans to be aware of the eco-friendliness of each location they visited. Costa Rica is growing in popularity, thanks to its ecofriendly tourist spots, and is quickly becoming the go-to vacation spot for environmentally conscious or adventureseeking tourists. McGehee Cruise and Vacation in Highland Village suggests Costa Rica as a great eco-adventure and eco-friendly destination. While they cite Costa Rica for its adventure activities—zip lining, hiking, rock climbing and white-water rafting to name a few—McGehee also features Costa Rican hotels such as the Finca Rosa Blanca Coffee Plantation and Inn, where the Sullivans spent a few days of their honeymoon. The inn is a lavish hotel that has consistently scored the highest ranking from the CST due to its earth-friendly practices such as serving on-site grown organic coffee and vegetables, using solar panels and composting. Many countries are trying to reduce tourism’s carbon footprint, and more eco-friendly resorts are popping up in countries like Brazil, Vietnam, Bali and Kenya. Jackson’s VIP Travel, which bills itself as the “Honeymoon Experts,” offers many eco-friendly honeymoon destinations, ranging from exotic eco-friendly Kenyan safaris to simple stays at a luxurious eco-friendly hotel in Colorado. The United States is also becoming more environ-

by J. Ashley Nolen


or some couples, developing a bridal registry is one of the most exciting parts of getting married. It is their one opportunity to think about the special items they want to fill the home they will share. Bridal registries are personal and can often reveal the personality of the special couple soon to be wed. Here are just a few local businesses that offer specialty bridal registries to their customers: Batte Furniture and Interiors (1010 E. Northside Drive, 601366-0335, www.battefurniture. com). Home furnishings and accessories. Belk (Northpark Mall, 1200 E. County Line Road, Ridgeland, 601-991-2017; 150 Dogwood Ave., Flowood, 601-919-5000 www. Southern-based department store with clothing, footwear, bedding, furniture, jewelry, beauty products and housewares.

Cupboard Gifts & Interiors (745 Clinton Parkway, Clinton, 601-924-5245). China, picture frames, pottery, gourmet foods, linens and home décor. The Everyday Gourmet (1625 E. County Line Road, 1-800-8980122; 1107 Highway Colony Parkway, Suite 111, Ridgeland, Glassware, dinnerware and kitchen supplies. Gail Pittman Designs (115 W. Jackson St., Suite 1F, Ridgeland, 601-707-7861, www.gailpittman. com). Hand-painted pottery, ceramics and dinnerware sets. Hearron Fine Gifts (1000 Highland Colony Parkway, Suite 5009, Ridgeland, 601-856-8982, www. Gifts for all occasions and the latest accents to update your home. Mississippi Craft Center (950 Rice Road, Ridgeland, 601-856-

7546, Pottery, glassware, and wooden spoons and bowls. Mississippi Gift Company (300 Howard St., Greenwood, 1-800467-7763, www.themississippi Mississippi food and gift items handcrafted by more than 150 Mississippi gourmet food companies, entrepreneurs and artists. Persnickety (2078 Main St., Madison, 601-853-9595). Upscale home decor, gifts and glassware. Stein Jewelry Company (1896 Main St., Suite E, Madison, 601605-8648, home). Fine jewelry, watches, fine gifts and accessories.


hen most couples talk about their honeymoon, it’s usually stories of how wonderful the masseuse was at the hotel spa or how delectable the food. They might even mention the breathtaking view from their room. This is about the time we nod and smile, and act like it all sounds so exciting and interesting. The truth? It’s not really that exciting. But imagine a couple describing the rush they got zip-lining through a tropical forest, being surrounded by majestic waterfalls while snorkeling among rainbow-colored fish, or their upclose encounters with whales, seals and polar bears. Now that makes for an interesting honeymoon recap. What could be a better start to spending the rest of your life with the person you love than having an adrenaline-filled, once-in-a-lifetime experience together? It’s easier than ever to share these experiences with the current trend of “eco-adventure” honeymoons. Whether you want to feel the snow of the Alps, the sands of African deserts, the salty waters in the Australian coral reefs or anything in between, an eco-adventure honeymoon offers a one-of-a-kind honeymoon experience, all for about the same price as a normal honeymoon. Eco-tourism is gaining in popularity, even for those looking for a laid-back honeymoon. Just go for a little more eco and little less adventure. Eco-tourism is also an environmentally conscious way of traveling. Former “Hitched” couple Cori and Mark Sullivan decided to take an eco-honeymoon after their 2009 nuptials. “If you’re flying or have to drive around, it’s not environmentally friendly, but at the same time, it’s your honeymoon, and I feel like you should still get to experience what you want to experience. It was very important for us to stay

SummerHouse (1109 Highland Colony Parkway, Suite D, Ridgeland, 601-853-4445, www. Unique and modern home-furniture bou41 tique and interior design.

Calling Musicians and Music Lovers

Morrison Brothers Music presents


by Julie Skipper


Spring Renewal pring is a time of renewal. Flowers blooming, Easter, the birds and the bees doing their thingsâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;it all makes a girl want to shop for a new look and go dancing. At least thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s what it makes this girl want to do. And so, this week I did. One of my first stops when I need fashion inspiration, or I am in the mood for something with a little edge, is The Shoe Bar at Pieces (425 Mitchell Ave., 601-939-5203) in Fondren. Becky, aka



Julie Skipper

Promoted by MS Madness Music Managment


SEXY check out our Daily Drink Specials! BAR/PATIO OPEN â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;TIL 11:00 pm FRI-SAT

TJ Harvey dons a blazer in the always classic spring fabric, linen, at Fatsumo Sushi.

the Shoe Pimp, and her Dolls are always on-trend and make me feel confident in pushing my boundaries a little. This trip, I found myself drawn to a bright yellow

May 18 - 24, 2011

6GI8A6HH:H ^c<VaaZgnHijY^d





601 Duling Ave.

romper with a ruffle at the top. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s right, I said â&#x20AC;&#x153;romper.â&#x20AC;? Succumbing to a fit of spring fever and encouragement from the Dolls that it looked cute on me, I bought it. I felt confident putting it on to make the rounds that Saturday night. As usual, Becky was right. Go see her. Sheâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s good for you. I firmly believe one bold turn deserves another, so bolstered by my experiment in bright yellow, I headed to Libby Story (120 W Jackson St., Suite A, 601717-3300) to revisit a bright coral-colored dress I hadnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t had the nerve to try on the first time I saw it. Surprise! It was perfect. As a bonus, the store had shoes for 20 percent off that day. Naturally, I had to get a pair. Instead of my typical bright stilettos, I went with a pair of neutrals with a low chunky heelâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;and got a coupon for 10 percent off on my next visit. Libby Story is a little gem, with its mix of vintage and new pieces. You can schedule an appointment for the staff to style you if you need help crafting your look. Even if I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t buy anything, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s always fun to visit and take away some ideas. Naturally, a new dress and shoes call for hair and makeup, so I made an appointment at SMoak Salon (622 Duling Ave., 601-982-5313) to visit Sarah Thomas and Dustin King. I love that Sarah never lets me get complacent with my â&#x20AC;&#x2122;do. Every few months we change things up, so she was totally on board for my spring remix. Dustin is new to the salon, but has fit right in. His approach to makeup is one that will make you look good for a special occasion, but can translate to every day. He uses a mix of products ranging from higher-end brands down to a new brush heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d just purchased at a major discount retailer. That dem-

Julie Skipper



Michelle Pigott welcomes spring in a bright maxi dress on the patio at Babalu.

ocratic approach is one most of us probably take. And speaking of brushes, I must share his battle cry (and public service announcement): â&#x20AC;&#x153;Throw away your bronzer brushes. They shouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t even call them that.â&#x20AC;? Armed with an arsenal of bright new clothes and fab hair and makeup, whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a gal to do? Round up a crew and go to a show that includes five guys dressed in costume and playing â&#x20AC;&#x2122;80s music, of course! Luckily, the Molly Ringwalds, everyoneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s favorite â&#x20AC;&#x2122;80s experience, played at Fire (209 Commerce St., 601-592-1000) that weekend, so after visiting bartender Laura Collins for cocktails at Hal & Malâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s (200 Commerce St., 601948-0888), thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s where the girls and I headed. Front and center with a packed crowd, rocking out was a blast as always. The new looks might not be over. All that â&#x20AC;&#x2122;80s nostalgia left me wanting some white jeans. Spring shopping season may not be over yet. Follow Julie on Twitter @jcskipp.

<2:=1/B7=< =>3<7<5A==< Colonial Mart Shopping Center Off Old Canton Rd Behind Great Harvest Bread Co. 5046 Parkway Drive Dine-In / Carry-Out

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

601-352-2001 1220 N. State St.

(across from Baptist Medical Center)




Classifieds, page 13

Clapton Realty Company 2761 Old Canton Road •Jackson, MS 601-487-6123 • 228-326-4284

Now Hiring

Commercial & Residential REALTORS®

File Ch. 7 & 13 Bankruptcy for $900 + Federal Filing Fee! Just $400 Down

Flexible Payment Plans Available

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Security Cameras • Attendant On Duty Drop Off Service • Free Wi-Fi

1046 Greymont Ave. (behind La Cazuela) CALL US AT 601-397-6223!

Culberson Bail Bonds

Bail Bonds 24 hours a day 7 days a week Payment Terms Available

Mark and Peggy Culberson are proud to announce the formation of Culberson Bonding, a complete bail bonding company serving all areas of Mississippi. Our agents are well known to you and will continue to provide friendly, professional service to all our clients in their time of need.

601-824-3254 |

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