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Video: Theme, charity and band for 8th annual Ritz on the River announced

The 7th annual Ritz on the River was delayed until September but brought about a return of major events to Vicksburg during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now, with plans for the 8th annual Ritz on the River, sponsored by Mutual Credit Union, organizers are hoping to have not just a return to normal, but a return to a full house. As part of that hope the event, which had been usually held each July, will again be held in September to allow for more time for the continued easing of COVID-19 restrictions.

“We scheduled it for September in the hopes we will be back to where we can be at full capacity and without masks,” Vicksburg Convention Center Executive Director Annette Kirklin said. “We are hoping we can get back to regular activities.”

The event is scheduled for Sept. 9, with up to 600 tickets up for sale beginning June 1. As for now, the release of the theme — A Night in Hollywood – and the date kicks off the center’s efforts to sign up sponsorships for the event which will benefit this year’s selected charity, Rainbow Farms.

“The time we do the reveal is the time in which we start sending out sponsorship requests,” Kirklin said. “We try to make sure we have everything paid for before we start selling tickets to make sure we can provide as much as possible to Rainbow Farms, which provides therapeutic services and horse riding classes for disabled children and adults.

When ticket sales open, they can be purchased through Ticketmaster.com or the Vicksburg Convention Center box office. Anyone seeking information on sponsorship packages should contact the Vicksburg Convention Center staff at 601-630-2929.

During Friday’s announcement, which featured a video announcing the date and theme, the Vicksburg Convention Center also announced the event’s main entertainment, The Universal Crush based in Nashville, Tenn.

According to a release from the convention center, “The Universal Crush, 12-piece mega-band, delivers a high-energy non-stop 2-hour energetic show filled with the best dance and party music from the last 30-plus years to today’s hottest hits from all genres.”

The resumes of band members include television appearances on The American Music Awards, Jimmy Kimmel Live, The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon, The Today Show, American Idol, The Voice, America’s Got Talent and one of the members was an American Idol finalist.

“Their professional high-quality choreography & multiple wardrobe changes will add to this star-studded night,” the release said.

Kirklin said the Hollywood theme provides plenty of options for guests in how they come dressed for the event.

“We gave everyone two options, they can dress to the nines with tuxedoes and fabulous dresses, or come dressed as their favorite stars,” she said. “We have a lot of great things planned — including the decorations — that are going to blow everyone’s mind.”

About Tim Reeves

Tim Reeves, and his wife Stephanie, are the parents of three children, Sarah Cameron, Clayton and Fin, who all attend school in the Vicksburg Warren School District. The family are members of First Baptist Church Vicksburg. Tim is involved in a number of civic and volunteer organizations including the United Way of West Central Mississippi and serves on the City of Vicksburg's Riverfront Redevelopment Committee.

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