Published 6:54 pm Saturday, December 30, 2017

According to, the Babylonians held a celebration in mid-March when their crops were planted.

The event lasted 12 days and the people made promises to the gods that they would pay their debts and return any objects they had borrowed. If they kept their word, these gods were to bestow favor on them for the coming year, but if not they would fall out of favor.

A similar practice began in ancient Rome after Julius Caesar moved the start of the New Year to Jan.1 in 46 B.C.

Email newsletter signup

Sign up for The Vicksburg Post's free newsletters

Check which newsletters you would like to receive
  • Vicksburg News: Sent daily at 5 am
  • Vicksburg Sports: Sent daily at 10 am
  • Vicksburg Living: Sent on 15th of each month

January was named after the two-faced god, Janus, whose spirit inhabited doorways and arches.

For the Romans, this symbolized looking backwards into the previous year and ahead into the future, so in turn they would offer sacrifices to the deity on this day and make promises of good conduct for the coming year.

The first day of the New Year for early Christians, according to the website, served as a time to ponder one’s past mistakes as well as resolving to be better in the future.

Today, New Year’s resolutions are generally secular and typically focus on self-improvement. A few locals shared for readers, their resolutions.

• Fire Chief Craig Danczyk — “Personally, I would like to continue to maintain a healthy lifestyle with good eating habits and exercise.” Danczyk said he and his wife have a routine where they go to the gym together and eat a lot of the same things and claims this has been positive in helping create “a life balance of work, nutrition exercise and rest.” Professionally, Danczyk said he wants to continue to be hands on with the fire department, and “I want to make the Vicksburg Fire Department as healthy as it can be for 2018 with continued improvements.”

• Miss Mississippi Anne Elizabeth Buys — “To continue to serve Vicksburg, the Miss Mississippi Corp. and Mississippi in the most effective way possible and to continue to grow deeper in my relationship with Christ and be a positive role model for young girls.”

• Mayor George Flaggs — “I don’t do New Year’s resolutions. What I do is a fasting for a whole year and concentrate on being spiritual, physical and mentally fit. So I always give up something, so I will be giving up all meat. I will do this from Jan. 1 to the following Jan. 1. Fasting helps me keep a since of focus and resolve,” Flaggs added he has been doing this for the past 10 years and feels like it works better for him than making resolutions.

• Rob Sigler, Vicksburg Post editor — “I really don’t do resolutions, but I do set goals for the year. My goals for 2018 are to be a better person than I was in 2017, eat healthier and lose weight.”

• Sheriff Martin Pace — “I don’t usually think about a New Year resolution, but I believe when you set your mind on something you should always give 100 percent effort in accomplishing your goal whatever it may be.”

• Courtland Wells, Vicksburg Post photographer — “Not to make my life all about pictures, but I would like to make more compelling images; as well as training more for possible track and field events in the coming year.”

• Jane Flowers, former executive director of the Vicksburg Warren County Chamber of Commerce — “I am calling my New Year’s resolution the second year of the hummingbird,” Flowers said, explaining that last year was supposed to be the “year of the hummingbird” meaning she had plans of getting fit and becoming more active following her retirement and likened this to a hummingbird since they are “light and fit.” But due to some unforeseen circumstances, Flowers said her goals had to be put on hold. This year she is once again aiming to get fit.

• Alderman Michael Mayfield Sr. — “Although New Year’s resolutions are traditional and very common, I’m not in the practice of personal resolutions, but as it relates to my job as a city elected official, I do plan to push the outcome of several pending projects in the North Ward.” Some of these projects Mayfield listed include resume road paving in the North Ward, completing the new recreation park in the Kings Community, upgrading and enhancing the Fuzzy Johnson Baseball Park on Mission 66, bring to fruition to the auxiliary water line, continuing to push the soil and conservation projects in low-lying areas, to improve the living conditions as far as housing by rehabilitating or removing some of the dilapidated structures and to continue to grow the rapport between the city and commercial/industrial businesses in an effort to have continuous job growth.

• Jack Burns, founder of the Westside Theatre Foundation — “It will just be more of the same. I am not a person that tries to make whole self-changes in my behavior at the New Year because I try to do the right thing all the time. I am not saying I’m perfect, but I am not a person that would say ‘I am going to cut out sweets this year, or get to the gym more often or try to read more books,’ because I am trying to do that all the time, anyway.”

• Alderman Alex Monsour — “My new year’s resolutions are to find a way to fix our aging infrastructure, increase our population, bring new jobs to our city so anyone who wants a job can have a job, increase tourism by utilizing any and every asset we have and be fiscally responsible to the citizens while making our city a safe place to educate and raise our children.” On a more personal note, Monsour said he plans to continue to improve his physical health so he can be around for his children for many years to come.

• Paul Ballard, president of the Vicksburg Theatre Guild — “My resolve is to be more thankful, more appreciative of others and more humble.”

• Judge Toni Terrett — “I want to develop better eating habits so I can have a healthier life and I want to glorify God through my work and actions.”

• Lynn Foley, former president of the Vicksburg Chamber of Commerce and director of sales at Courtyard by Marriott — “My New Year’s resolution is before the end of the year, to run a 5K, and I will be starting from scratch.” Foley said instead of just going to the gym or saying she was going to work out, she wants to take her resolution a step further and say specifically what she was going to do. This notion of being very specific, she said, came about after attending a conference 2016. The presenter, Foley said, “talked about New Year’s resolutions and how we all make them and we all break them, so instead of saying you are going to go to the gym three times a week, be very specific about what you want to accomplish.” She implemented this form of a resolution two years ago, and has since learned how to tap dance and last year even performed on stage. Foley added that making resolutions realistic is important and not to bite off more than one can chew.

• Stacey Massey Mahoney, Southern Cultural Heritage Foundation Executive Director — “Same as usual and maybe this year it will stick, exercise more and eat less.”

• Police Chief Milton Moore — “Continue to work hard for the city of Vicksburg and try to keep it safe.”

• Jan Griffey, Vicksburg Post General Manager — “I don’t really have a resolution per se, but rather a theme for 2018, which is simplify. I intend to work to simplify my life — at home and in our business. By focusing on simplicity, I hope to accomplish lots of the things I would seek to accomplish through resolutions. I want to be healthier and hope to do that through eating more simply, cooking simple meals at home — like roasting vegetables and meat — and eating simple, healthier meals when I eat out, which is often.

Maybe it’s a product of my age — I’ll be 56 in early January — but I’m experiencing a tremendous urge to downsize. I have lots of stuff and want to find new homes for much of it. I want to go drawer-by-drawer, closet-by-closet and examine everything I own and downsize significantly. It will take a year to complete this project, I’m certain. At work, I want to continue to simplify, streamline. We made a lot of headway in just that in 2017. We’ve gotten back to the basics of community journalism, which has paid us dividends, but we have much more work to do.”

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.’

email author More by Terri Cowart