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MARDI GRAS: Parade, gumbo cook-off and masked ball planned locally

It’s that time of year to start gathering up the beads and doubloons.

Mardi Gras is just around the corner and Vicksburg will offer several events to celebrate the season including a parade, a gumbo cook-off and a masked ball.

The 18th annual Mardi Gras Parade will roll down Washington Street beginning at 4 p.m. Saturday, March 2, and the Vicksburg Main Street program, which sponsors the parade, is now taking applications for those interested in participating.

“All area clubs, churches, organizations, schools, dance/drill teams, and businesses are invited to take part in this community parade,” Vicksburg Main Street executive director Kim Hopkins said.

The cost to participate is $25 for all non-profit groups and $50 for businesses with fees increasing to $50 for non-profits and $100 for businesses after the Feb. 15 deadline, Hopkins said.

Serving as the grand marshall for the parade this year will be Marcus Furniture, Hopkins said.

“They are celebrating 120 years in Downtown Vicksburg and we are hoping everyone will come out to help them celebrate during the parade,” she said.

For more information on the Mardi Gras parade, contact the Vicksburg Main Street Program at 601-634-4527, email Kim at kimh@vicksburg.org, or visit www.downtownvicksburg.org.

Gumbo cook-off

The 8th Annual Carnaval de Mardi Gras Gumbo Cook-Off will be held following the parade from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Southern Cultural Heritage Center.

The event is presented by the Vicksburg Foundation for Historic Preservation and will include seafood and non-seafood categories.

For those interested in competing, Nancy Bell, who is executive director of the Vicksburg Foundation for Historic Preservation, said entry fees are $50 before Feb. 23 and $75 after.

Set up times the day of the gumbo cook-off, Bell said, will begin at 8 a.m. and judging will follow at 3:45 p.m.

Public tasting begins at 5 p.m. and awards will be handed out at 7:30.

A first, second and third place award will be given out in each category as well as a best decorated site and a people’s choice award, Bell said, with first place winners in each category taking home a trophy and $200.

For more information and rules, email vburgfoundation@aol.com or visit www.facebook.com/vicksburg.mardi.gras.

Masked ball

On Feb. 16, Fit Chef Catering, The Lofts and The Vicksburg will host the Vicksburg Mardi Gras Masked Ball.

For the past couple of years, The Vicksburg Main Street program has hosted a Mardi Gras Ball, but since the group decided to opt out this year, community relations and marketing director at The Lofts Kimberly Smith said there were some who had had a really good time, so they decided to “put together a party.”

“We just decided there should be a fun ball,” Smith said.

The inaugural event will be held from 7 to 11 p.m. at The Vicksburg Hotel Tea Room, 801 Clay St. and attendees are encouraged to dress in formal or cocktail attire.

However, because it is a ball, attendees are also welcome to wear a gown or tuxedo, Smith said.

The cost to attend is $25 and includes heavy hors d’oeuvre, a cash bar and entertainment by DJ Shaggy. Tickets are available at Fit Chef Catering or online at eventbrite.com. Space is limited, Smith said. For more information, visit eventbrite.com/e/vicksburg-mardi-gras-masked-ball-tickets-55316309571.

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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