Phatwater Phun Coming Around the Bend

PhatwaterHundreds of wooden, fiberglass and carbon paddles will break the treacherous waters of the mighty Mississippi River at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, October 12th, a distance of 42.5 miles upstream from Natchez, and a variety of paddlers will begin reaching the finish line around noon that day.  Participation in the Phatwater Kayak Challenge has increased significantly over the past several years and now draws world class competitors to the waters of the Mississippi River, and the race is sanctioned by the American Canoe Association.  The race is comprised of a mix of recreational and competitive kayakers, canoers and stand-up boarders, who brave the currents and whirlpools of the Mississippi River, to participate in this grueling competition. Race organizers work year round to attract kayaking enthusiasts and spectators to the river to enjoy the competition.  Pack a picnic lunch and head to Natchez Under-the-Hill, and grab a shady spot under the Chinaberry tree to watch the competitors as they race to the finish line.

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FALL PILGRIMAGE IN NATCHEZ 2013

Tour Beginning Outside of Governor Holmes House

Tour Beginning Outside of Governor Holmes House

Summer is winding down and the homeowners participating in this year’s Fall Pilgrimage are sprucing up to welcome visitors. Most of the homes on tour are privately owned, some are open for tour daily year round.  During the special Pilgrimage seasons, visitors are guided through the homes by costumed players portraying those who once roamed these majestic houses, a few of which are actual descendants and still occupy the home today. Natchez has a rich, unique history and much of it is revealed in the stories told by the guides as they tie in events which happened in Natchez in the early years, with the families who lived in the historic homes which are scattered across the city.   Visitors will learn as they journey from house to house, what family members did to impact the city’s development, or perhaps what they did for a living to contribute to the economic status of the city’s business successes.  They’ll hear tragic stories of lives cut short by fevers and stories of brave men who made their living on the Mississippi River.
There will be a great ensemble of evening entertainment as well, through spirituals performed in Amos Polk’s Voices of Hope to be performed while enjoying a plantation style dinner at the famous Carriage House restaurant located on the grounds of one of Natchez’ premier tour homes, Stanton Hall.  The Natchez Little Theater troupe will be performing an adaptation of the beloved Louisa May Alcott southern classic, Little Women, on various nights during the two week Pilgrimage.  For more information and to see a complete schedule of the homes you would like to visit during your stay, please go to http://www.natchezpilgrimage.com/natchez-fall-pilgrimage.php or call 800-647-6742, and to learn more about dining, accommodations and more Natchez history, please visit our website at http://www.visitnatchez.org or call 800-647-6724.

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New Rock’n Event in Ferriday

Great Balls of Fire will once again reign down on Ferriday, Louisiana, in the form ofLSE Flyer a panel discussion, film screening and live concert taking place at the famous Arcade Theater on Saturday, August 3rd, during a newly formed tourism event called Louisiana Soundtrack Experience. Through the efforts of tourism enthusiast and Louisiana’s Lt. Governor, Jay Dardenne, the Louisiana Office of Tourism and Oxford-American magazine, this ‘free to the public’ event will draw Blues and Rock-n-Roll junkies from around the region in hopes of filling every seat in the Arcade’s auditorium.  At 3:00 p.m., a panel discussion on preserving our musical heritage will be moderated by Oxford-American guest editor, Alex Rawls, and feature Kenny Bill Stinson, Susan Roach, J.D. Davis and Tommy Polk, and will end at 4:30 p.m.  After a 15 minute break, Lt. Governor Dardenne and BP America will present Sunshine By The Stars: Celebrating Lousiana Music, a film starring Harry Connick, Jr., and feature the Marsalis Family, Better Than Ezra, Tim McGraw, The Rebirth Brass Band, Trombone Shorty and more.  Then from 6-8:45 p.m., settle in for a live concert to be opened by The Matthew Davidson Band, followed by headliners Kenny Bill Stinson and Ezy Eddie & The Party Rockers.  Mark your calendars for this free, fun-filled musical event.

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Food and Wine Fest On the Front Burner

ImageIt’s getting close and it’s soon to be the hottest ticket on the Mississippi River.  Click the link below to learn more about what’s on the agenda and the menu of this increasingly popular Natchez event.

Tickets may be ordered online on NFWF website, or at First Natchez Radio, 2 O’Ferrall St., Natchez.

www.natchezfoodandwinefest.com

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First Annual Blueberry Fest in Natchez

BlueberriesNatchez has a number of fantastic festivals throughout the year, and one more is being whipped up by local restaurateur, Chef Guy Bass.  On June 15th, Natchez will have its first Blueberry Festival on the bluff overlooking the Mississippi River, just across the street from the Natchez Grand Hotel on North Broadway St..  Music and lots of blueberry oriented activities will take place throughout the day.  Festivities begin at 10:00 a.m., conclude at sunset, and the event is free and open to the public. Grab the kids and your lawn chairs and head on down to the bluff for a fun-filled day. 

STAY TUNED FOR OTHER EVENTS ON THE RIVER’S HORIZON -
Natchez Food and Wine Festival, July 26-28

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Expedition Natchez 1813: Becoming “Old Hickory” War of 1812

Andrew Jackson’s troops will march again from Natchez to Nashville along the Natchez Trace as portrayed by members of the 7th U.S. Living History Association and modern-day volunteers.

The April 12-14 event, “Expedition Natchez 1813: Becoming “Old Hickory”, commemorates the bicentennial of the War of 1812 as it reminds the public of the role of the Natchez Trace in the War of 1812. Andrew Jackson earned the name “Old Hickory” while walking each step with his soldiers almost the entire length of the old road.
The portrayals will begin with the landing of the troops in Natchez. On Friday evening, April 12, up to 200 reenactors in period-correct uniforms will parade through the historic town starting at Natchez Under-the-Hill to a reception at the Prentiss Club.

The following day the troops will be encamped at Historic Jefferson College near Jackson’s camp site at Fort Dearborn. Military marches, historic weapon demonstrations and civilian life portrayals will be presented throughout the day. War of 1812 authors and scholars will speak in the college’s historic classrooms. An 1813 ladies’ tea will be held in the afternoon at historic home Auburn, followed by a fife and drum concert and period dinner for Jackson at the Natchez Eola Hotel. Sunday morning, Jackson’s fight with federal officials will be reenacted and troops will begin the return march.

A detachment of the soldiers will camp on the old Natchez Trace near Jackson’s campsites. During the weekdays, they will present educational programs for students in Ridgeland, French Camp and Pontotoc, Mississippi. On Tuesday evening, the troops will march into Mississippi’s Old Capitol for a period concert and a re-creation of Andrew Jackson’s War of 1812 anniversary speech at that site.

Friday, April 19, the contribution of the Chickasaw Nation and the Colbert family will be honored at a dinner in Tuscumbia, Alabama. The Chickasaws provided crucial emergency food supplies to the troops when government contractors failed to perform.

Saturday, April 20, the soldiers will be welcomed home by reenactors portraying their 1813 families at Grinder’s Stand, where explorer Meriwether Lewis is buried. The inn was on the Chickasaw border in 1813, and returning troops stopped there for a meal and to visit Lewis’s grave. The soldiers will then place a wreath at the War of 1812 Monument Site on the parkway, where a marker serves as a surrogate tombstone to War of 1812 soldiers buried along the old Trace.

On Sunday, April 21, the troops arrive at the Hermitage, the home of Andrew Jackson. They will hold a period church service in the chapel that Jackson built for his wife. A reenactor will portray one of the expedition chaplains. The troops will then march to Andrew Jackson’s grave for a wreath ceremony.
This commemoration continues a four-year partnership among the 7th US Infantry Living History Association, the Natchez Trace Parkway Association and the National Park Service. It will be the first history event to run the entire length of the parkway and incorporate both Natchez and Nashville.

Here is a list of all the fun filled events for the weekend!

Expedition Natchez

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Guest Instagram

Kaelin Daye has taken over as the first “guest instagrammer” for the Visit Natchez Instagram account. Be sure to follow us on Instagram (@visitnatchez) to see more awesome photos around Natchez. You can even use the hashtag #visitnatchez for your pictures of Natchez and surrounding scenery.

Here are a few of @kaelindayephotography‘s photos.

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Stay tuned for more to come!

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