Riverfest to Vicksburgfest; music lineup announced

Published 3:58 pm Monday, April 22, 2019

What’s in a name?

If you are organizers with the annual Riverfest event, held each year in downtown Vicksburg, rebranding the event with a different name is a big deal.

In a release last week, event officials said “after much research and analysis of Riverfest and other regional festivals, organizers have rebranded to Vicksburgfest to emphasize that this is Vicksburg’s festival to be enjoyed by all citizens and visitors to our city. The free family-friendly event will have expanded kids’ activities, a juried arts and crafts show, food vendors that highlight local restaurants, and more activities that highlight Vicksburg’s assets.”

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Vicksburgfest will be held May 10 and 11.

“This is Vicksburg’s festival and we want Vicksburg to come back downtown and enjoy all the offerings,” said Dean Anderson, Riverfest board president. “The entire point of Riverfest was for us to have a festival that celebrated Vicksburg. We want to emphasize the importance of having a local festival and show our visitors why we love living along the Mississippi River.”

In addition to the new name announcement, organizers also unveiled the event’s musical lineup.

On Friday, May 10, Mitch Beauman will take the stage at 6 p.m., followed by The Chillat 7 p.m., Eric Hamilton at 8 a.m. and the Molly Ringwalds at 9:30 p.m.

On Saturday, May 11, GospelFest will go from 10 a.m. to noon.

While the daytime live music lineup is still in development, Keith Johnson and the Big Muddy Blues Band will go at 5 p.m., followed by Patrick Smith at 7p.m. and Southern Komfort at 9 p.m.

Board members, city committees, and community organizations have been meeting since last summer to discuss ways to make Vicksburg’s festival a success and a complete rebranding was vital to getting the community’s support. 

Anderson said making the event free, eliminating fencing, having the concerts end at 11 p.m. and adding more family-friendly activities are all important changes to make festival goers want to come downtown and enjoy the event.

Daytime activities include Burt Fleming with WoodBCreations Unique Chainsaws Sculptures, the trackless train, Frank the Camel, Ricky Nobile Caricatures, a magician and merchant sidewalk sales.

Please continue to follow other the Vicksburg Riverfest Facebook page for more updates regarding Vicksburgfest and keep sending suggestions on making this event a success.