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Downtown Vicksburg’s open container ordinance set to make RiverFest an even bigger success

Downtown Vicksburg is the perfect place to host a festival like RiverFest, which will be overtaking the area this weekend.

With stages set up at both ends of Washington Street and the ability to go back and forth between them, it will hopefully create a great atmosphere to enjoy music and have some fun.

It is nights like Friday and Saturday where people will be walking around having fun and listening to music that decisions like the one the Board of Mayor and Aldermen made to allow open containers downtown really pay dividends. The bars and restaurants can open their doors, stay open late and serve festivalgoers as they walk back and forth between the two stages.

Downtown has taken massive steps forward in recent years, and hopefully it will continue to build and become a destination area for the region.

New bars and restaurants have added to the diversity of the area with more upscale offerings such as Rusty’s and Roca, casual places to grab a drink and eat good food like Cottonwood and 10 South and great places to grab a drink and have some fun such as Jacque’s, Cocktails 101, Klondyke and Monsour’s.

More is coming as well with the Margaritaville restaurant opening in the near future and work ongoing at the Mississippi Barbecue Company, which will also hopefully have a Yazoo Brewery taproom.

Having places like those are the foundation of what will make a downtown vibrant. Stores are key, too, especially for visitors and there are some of those as well, but it is food and drink, which really will drive people to downtown in my opinion.

As more restaurants and bars open, the next step is building on what you have available and making it a destination area for events and festivals to bring people to the area from not just the town, but Port Gibson, Tallulah, the Jackson metro area and more.

Sitting there on the Fourth of July watching the band perform before fireworks, all I could think about was how perfect a natural amphitheater the hill leading down to the old railroad depot is. With the stage set in front of the building, it is the perfect place to sit and listen to music or watch a movie on a big screen.

There is easy access to Washington Street and the farmers’ market lot is right behind with space for vendors to set up selling food and drink.

On Friday or Saturday nights through the spring and fall (summer is just too hot and rainy mostly) a series of concerts or movies like many towns do would bring people to the area and answer one of the biggest question: “What is there to do in town?”

Downtown is the jewel of Vicksburg and it is time to put it to good use.

  Brandon O’Connor is a staff writer for The Vicksburg Post. You may reach him at brandon.oconnor@vicksburgpost.com.

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