Carnaval de Mardi Gras and cook-off this weekend

Published 10:29 am Wednesday, February 26, 2014

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With bragging rights on the line, the Southern Cultural Heritage Center is sure to get heated up Saturday during the third annual Vicksburg Carnaval de Mardi Gras and Gumbo Cook-off competition.
“We have 15  competitors already signed-up, triple the number from last year,” said Alainna O’Bannon, the chairman of the event.
O’Bannon said she also has five additional verbal agreements. “I think people are waiting to see what the weather will do,” she said. The National Weather Service is forecasting a small chance for rain with mild temperatures reaching into the 60’s for the day.
Competitors will have until noon Friday to decide if they want to throw their beads into the pot. The entry fee for the cook-off is $40 and includes admittance for three team members to the carnival. First place winners will take home a trophy and a $200 cash prize. Awards will also be given for second and third prize, best decorated site and People’s Choice.
“Our judges for the event include a writer from Eat Jackson, the manager of Hal & Mal’s, the co-owner from T’Beaux’s Blues Le Roux and our Event Gold Sponsor,” O’Bannon said. “We are keeping the names secret for now,” she said.
The event, will also include children’s activities, live music and dancing. “Inside our dance floor will be moving to the music of Legal Tender with DeAnna Nicole and the street party, and the gumbo cook-off area will be enjoying the sounds of cajun zydeco music,” said O’Bannon.
“Occasions Wine and Spirit will have Pat O’Brien’s mix and rum on hand for hurricanes,” she said, and Capital City Beverage will be selling Mardi Gras Abita beer. “You can’t even get the Mardi Gras beer. It is sold out,” said O’Bannon, “but Capital City Beverage reserved some just for us.”
Admission is $10 for adults and includes gumbo and a beverage ticket and $5 for children which includes unlimited children’s activities.
King cake will be available for sale at a concession stand along with hamburgers, hot dogs and soft drinks.
Tickets may be purchased in advance at the  Biedenharn Coca-Cola Museum, 1107 Washington St., or at the door the night of the event. Festivities will run from 5 to 9 p.m.
All proceeds will benefit the Vicksburg Foundation for Historic Preservation. For more information on gumbo cook-off rules or a team form, call 601-636-5010 or visit www.facebook.com/vicksburg.mardi.gras.

About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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