RiverFest 2012 About 5,000 fill streets for rain-free fun

Published 12:15 am Sunday, April 22, 2012

Dirty Dozen Brass Band packed the streets Saturday night to close the 25th annual RiverFest.

An estimated 5,000 people came out for the band’s performance on the North Stage at Washington and China, RiverFest organizer Joel Angle said.

The band with their genre-bending, revolutionary New Orleans Sound and the mild, cool weather helped draw the crowd, Angle said.

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“The weather’s pretty good and we’ve got a solid headliner,” Angle said Saturday night.

Dirty Dozen capped a weekend of festivities and performances by local artists,

Rush and Friday’s headliner Easton Corbin.

Friday’s entertainment was opened by local favorite The Chill who paved the way by having a large crowd dancing in the streets by 6:30 p.m.

Tracy Beers of Vicksburg said she came Saturday to see The Chill and the Patrick Smith Band but took in most of the annual festival.

“We came out Friday night to see Easton Corbin and it was really good,” she said.

The mild weather was an upside, too, said Beers who has attended the past 10 RiverFests.

“At least it didn’t rain,” she said. “That was the best part.”

What was predicted as a rainy day was cloudy most of the day with a high around 65. Clouds lifted late in the afternoon and skies were clear by the time RiverFest gates opened at 6 p.m.

When 16-year-old Taderrius Woods finished up with the Alcorn State University Jazz Fest, he and his brother, Derrick Davis Jr., 14, headed over to RiverFest to catch the live music. They are the sons of Derrick Davis Sr. and Karen Davis of Vicksburg. Taderrius performed earlier in the day as part of the Vicksburg High School Jazz Ensemble and said he was excited for his first trip to RiverFest.

Derrick said he was also excited about the music and had been coming to RiverFest since he was 6.

“I’m here to watch most of them,” he said.

Terri Cockrell of Brandon was also attending for the first time and said she enjoyed the fun atmosphere and cool weather.

“We’re not out here for anyone particular, just to have a good time,” she said.

Earlier in the day thousands also looking for fun and family atmosphere attended free RiverFest activities, Angle said. Events featured arts and crafts vendors, a preview of Vicksburg Farmers Market and live entertainment from dance troupes and musicians.

“I would say as many as 2,000 people were on the streets at any given time,” Angle said.

Many of those people, Angle said, returned for Dirty Dozen and other musicians later in the night.

Patrons also lined the streets for the Old Court House Museum Flea Market where about 60 vendors sold items ranging from antiques to toys.

The flea market is not associated with RiverFest.