Main Street headed back to Washington Street

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Vicksburg’s Main Street Program is headed back to Washington Street, though for only about the next 18 months.

At a special meeting Tuesday morning, the downtown promotional group’s board unanimously approved a lease to move to 1309 Washington St., formerly home to the Chocolate Derby.

Harry Sharp, board chairman, was granted authority to sign the lease, which he said should be done within the week. Executive Director Kim Hopkins said the move should begin this month, after Mayor Paul Winfield signs the lease agreement, but the offices likely will not be open to visitors until January.

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Main Street will be on Washington Street until renovations are completed on the three-story Levee Street Depot, where Main Street has agreed to move along with the Vicksburg Convention and Visitors Bureau and a transportation museum. The building at 1309 Washington is owned by Marianne Floyd and Gina Pugh, who also own and operate Sweet Beginnings next door at 1311 Washington St. 

Main Street organizes and sponsors downtown events and is an advocate for downtown tourism, residents and businesses. It is funded through memberships and a special downtown tax on commercial properties. The staff has been looking for a permanent home since the 2006 collapse of a Clay Street building near its former office.

At the meeting Tuesday, the board discussed five downtown buildings that Hopkins had visited and considered for the move. Most were ruled out because the buildings are for sale and the board agreed it did not want to have to move again should the building sell. The rent at the new space will be $650 per month, including utilities, said Hopkins, and the building is not currently for sale.

The Vicksburg Board of Mayor and Aldermen, which also helps fund the Main Street program, signed off on the lease last week. Hopkins and an assistant director have been working from two offices in the City Hall Annex on Walnut Street since shortly after the collapse forced them from downtown.


Contact Steve Sanoski at