Crowd makes (In)decision for Idol

Published 12:00 am Monday, April 19, 2004

Ashleigh Ford, 15, from left, Danielle Mosley, 16, and Julie Perry, 16, yell for their friend, Emily Edwards, 16, who was competing to become the Riverfest Idol Friday night during Riverfest 2004 on Washington Street. Edwards did not win but received a trophy for participating. The group Indecision won first place. (Melanie Duncan ThortisThe Vicksburg Post)

[4/17/04]Waving signs and stomping the bleachers, families and friends filled seats Friday night to cheer for their favorite Riverfest Idol as performers rallied the crowd for the first night of Riverfest 2004.

About 900 attended the downtown soiree in its first three hours, and organizers were optimistic about the weekend.

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A group of three local teenagers who call themselves “Indecision” took home a trophy and won recording time at a Jackson recording studio, beating six other contestants who performed rap, country, pop and gospel songs.

Band members Colin Reid, Hardy Farris and Patrick Karel performed songs by Dave Matthews, Jimi Hendrix and 12 Stones.

The winner was based on applause from the crowd, and it came down to a run-off between Indecision and Lindsay Miller, who sang a Shania Twain hit called “Man! I Feel Like a Woman.”

But screams, whistles and chants gave Indecision the edge.

2004 was the first year for the Riverfest Idol Show, which was hosted by Miss Vicksburg Melanie Sanders and featured a performance by Warren Central High School’s talent show winner Roxy Ditto.

The 6:30 p.m. show was the beginning of a string of live music, and at about 9 p.m., a crowd of old and young danced and mingled while listening to The Chill at the South Stage, at Washington and Crawford streets.

“It was a good crowd for early in the night,” said Jenifer Sharp, Riverfest 2004 president.

Attendance was down to 12,000 last year from 2002 when about 17,000 attended.

“This is better than last year,” said Rosalie Theobald, executive director of the city’s Main Street Program. “This is the best I’ve ever seen it on a Friday night.”

“The combination of the weather and a change of attitude in downtown had plenty to do with it,” she said.

Festival-goers lined up for a taste of carnival fare including Polish sausage, fresh squeezed lemonade, funnel cakes and blooming onions.

One youngster, Demerick Thomas, 9, was barely finished eating chicken on a stick but already had his sight set on more of Riverfest’s treats.

“I might tell my mom to walk me down there for a sundae,” he said.

Another Vicksburg family didn’t make the festival last year but decided to give it a go this year.

“The entertainment looked good, and it looked more appealing than last year so we figured we’d give it a try,” said Cisi Mathews, who was accompanied by her husband, Michael Mathews and 6-month-old daughter Catherine Mathews.

Riverfest will continue today and tonight, and the Alcorn State University Jazz Festival and Vicksburg Arts and Crafts Show will add to the downtown festivities.