A lot will be happening in Downtown Vicksburg in 2018

Published 9:00 pm Thursday, January 11, 2018

New businesses, a new museum and a bigger RiverFest with well-known headliners are all planned for 2018 in downtown Vicksburg.

Vicksburg Main Street executive director Kim Hopkins also said a mixture of apartments, restaurants and retail stores are planned for the downtown district in 2018.

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“We have some business that will be opening in 2018, but I am not sure of the dates,” Hopkins said. “We have had buildings sold off of Washington Street. That is really exciting that people are investing off of Washington Street now. We had over 18 buildings sold in 2017. Some of them will be retail. We have a lot of apartments coming in. We have some restaurants coming.”

One of the main projects for 2018 is the planned pavilion at the Farmers’ Market lot. The city is using a portion of the second $9 million draw from its $18 million capital improvement bond issue to build the pavilion. The pavilion has a budget of $400-450,000, down from the original estimate of $550,000 following a redesign.

“We are looking forward to the Farmer’s Market pavilion,” Hopkins said. “The plans were approved and I think the bids will go out soon for that. Hopefully they will start work. I think it will be great. I think it will help a lot.”

The market will open the weekend of April 20-21 to coincide with RiverFest and then officially kick off its 2018 season the first weekend of May.

This year’s RiverFest will be headlined by Vicksburg native William Michael Morgan whose debut single “I Met a Girl” went gold. Country music star Uncle Kracker will also be performing during RiverFest.

The festival will start Friday April 20 and go through at least Saturday April 21, but Hopkins said they are considering adding more events that Sunday.

“RiverFest has booked a lot of great bands so it is going to be a great weekend,” Hopkins said. “We have a lot of daytime activities and we are still booking daytime activities. The merchants will be having their downtown sale and we will have arts and crafts. We are still planning a lot of it, but it will be bigger and better and improved. We are really excited about RiverFest this year.”

Hopkins said 2018 will also be highlighted by the planned opening of the Catfish Row Museum in the old Monte Carlo building at 913 Washington St.

Over all, the goal for 2018 is to continue working with the Riverfront Redevelopment Committee and the city of Vicksburg to improve the city’s riverfront and to continue to work to attract additional businesses to downtown, Hopkins said.