Saturday, June 29, 2013

Weather Looks Beautiful Today

Go check the weather.  High of 91, low of 66.  Ten percent chance of rain.  We couldn't ask for much better for a June 29.  See you at the Independence Day Celebration.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Layout for Independence Day Celebration (Old Trace)

Layout of Independence Day Celebration (Lakeshore)

Sid Thompson and DoubleShotz

I left off Sid Thompson and DoubleShotz from the Independence Day entertainment list, so they get their own post.  On the Madison County side of things, Will and Linda kick things off at 2 p.m.  Steve Azar wraps things up before the fireworks.  Between the two, Sid Thompson and DoubleShotz, light up the stage.  

The Jackson Free Press describes them as a mixture of Southern Rock, Classic Rock and the Blues.  A former Pike County geologist, Sid and his band play a heavy touring schedule.  Here is a description:

Sid Thompson started DoubleShotz in Dallas, Texas, in 1990 with the concept of playing two songs in a row by every artist (primarily Texas-based R&B like SRV, Jonny Lang, Kenny Wayne, Thunderbirds, ZZ Top, etc.) mixed with a vast repertoire of classic rock from AC/DC, the Beatles and CCR to Led Zeppelin, as well as southern rock from the Allman Brothers and CDB to Lynyrd Skynyrd.
Sid brought DoubleShotz back to his home state of Miss. in 1998 and has been fortunate to have some of the best bass players and drummers in Jackson to join the three-piece band.

May 2013 Board Minutes of the PRVWSD

Mississippi Wildlife Extravaganza

One of my favorite events of the year is the Mississippi Wildlife Extravaganza, hosted by the Mississippi Wildlife Federation.  This is a exposition geared almost exclusively to hunters and fishers; however, there are plenty of outdoors-related activities for the entire family.  Here is the link to the Facebook Page.  

Activities include numerous shows on the main stage from experts in the field of hunting and fishing on topics like turkey calling, big buck hunting, herpetology, etc.  Also, there are exhibitions on archery, bass fishing, grabbling, and hunting dog training.  Hundreds of vendors selling merchandise, hunting trips, etc.  

It's August 2-4 at the Trademart on the Fairgrounds in Jackson.  See you there.  

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Overlay District Presentation

Last week, I presented before the Flowood Kiwanis on the topic of the Overlay District.  I gave a history of its genesis, statutory predicate, substance, and future implementation.  So, if your homeowner's association or service organization wants to have me come and talk, or just answer questions, I'd be glad to.  You can contact me at

Madison the City's Fireworks

In my timeline of Independence Day Celebrations, I inadvertently omitted the City of Madison's fireworks show.  It will take place on July 4, at 9 p.m. at Liberty Park.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Rankin County Traffic Control Map for Independence Day Celebration

Here is the map, provided by the PRVWSD, for everyone to adhere to following the fireworks for the Independence Day Celebration.  Note the crossovers on the Causeway will be closed, so if you are heading to the North Shore, plan accordingly.

Also, the operational hours for the boat ramps will be extended to midnight to allow for everyone to leave safely.

Madison Traffic Control Map for Independence Day Celebration

Below is the post-fireworks traffic control map provided by the PRVWSD for the Madison County side of the Independence Day Celebration.  Plan your exit strategy accordingly.

Note:  The operational hours for the boat ramps will be extended to midnight to allow everyone to safely exit.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Remember to Stop By the Produce Stand on the Way Home

Road construction hasn't seemed to hurt this business.  Here are some recent posts from the Old Fannin Farmer's Market:

Mississippi Blueberries are in along with fresh vegetables by the pound or bushel. Give us a call to place your order by the bushel. 601-919-1690.

We will have Lady Peas ($23, per bushel), Purple Hull Pink Eyes, Green Butter beans, Speckle Butter Beans. Call 601-919-1690 to place an order.

Entertainment for the Independence Day Celebration

Here is a run down of the musical entertainment for the Barnett Reservoir Foundation's Independence Day Celebration.

Steve Azar performs from 8 to 9:30 p.m. at Old Trace Park.  In 2002, Azar, from Greenville, Mississippi, scored a No. 2 country hit with "I don't have to be me (til Monday)".  His second album, "Wait'n on Joe" climbed to No. 29 on the country charts.  Azar released his fourth album, "Slide on over here" in 2007, after touring with Bob Segar.

Will and Linda precede Azar.  They begin playing at 2 p.m. at Old Trace Park.  Here is a write up from their website:  Will and Linda Pleasants are a husband and wife acoustic duo specializing in classic rock and soul from the  60's, 70's and 80's.  Utilizing the latest advancements in technology and sound reinforcement, Will and Linda are capable of providing quality entertainment in a wide variety of styles ranging from intimate acoustic ballads to more dancable "full band" arrangements. 

Luckenbach opens things up at Lakeshore Park at 2 p.m.  Luckenbach, pictured above singing at last year's Independence Day Celebration, are local and regularly play around the Reservoir. As you can imagine, they grab a bit of influence from outlaw country.  They did a fantastic job last year and I'm looking forward to hearing them this year.

Southern Steele plays Lakeshore after Luckenbach, but I'm having trouble finding online information for them.  Surely, not this New Jersey based, Lynyrd Skynyrd tribute band.

The Chill takes the Lakeshore Park stage at 6 p.m.  From their website, "The "charter" Chill members originate from Vicksburg around 1970. The Chill name was adopted about 1984 and has held true since. The movie title and music of "The Big Chill" is what sparked the name.  See the great story with all the details in the Vicksburg Post article link below. 
Our style is Classic Rock and Roll, Motown, and Variety Dance Music. We bring added kick to concerts, festivals, corporate events, weddings, receptions and private parties. 
The Chill Sound is an exciting blend of horns, guitars, percussion and vocal harmony, with a unique combination of fun personalities ready to create a party.  When the Mid South wants a party they will be talking about for weeks, they call The Chill.
Individually, our members have performed with such national talents as Bob Hope, Lovin' Spoonful, BJ Thomas, Young Rascals, Spinners, Monkees, Chuck Barry, Ray Charles, Coasters, Guy Lombardo Orchestra, Guess Who, Grass Roots, Helen Ready, Wilson Pickett, Johnny Mathis, Temptations, Smokey Robinson ... and many, many more."

Monday, June 24, 2013

Full Slate of 4th of July Week Activities

And I mean full slate.

Thursday, June 27:  Red, White and Jackson, Old Capitol Green, Jackson, Mississippi.  Clowns, jumpies, face painting, food vendors, tours of the Old Capitol, orchestra and musical entertainment all evening long, capped off with a spectacular fireworks show.  Check out the Facebook page for more information.  There is a lot going on for this event.  One of my favorite things is to take my children through the Old Capitol museum before it gets dark.

Saturday, June 29 (2 p.m. to 6 p.m.):  Waterfest, Old Trace Park, Ridgeland, Mississippi.  Interactive displays, water slides, face painting, jumpies, crafts, activities, etc.  Plus, Mr. Whiskers!

Saturday, June 29 (2 p.m. till):  Independence Day Celebration at the Reservoir, either Old Trace Park or Lakeshore Park, Brandon/Ridgeland, Mississippi.  This is the big Reservoir event, the memory your children with take with them into adulthood; the boat parade, the fireworks, the music, vendors.  Previous posts (Old Trace, Lakeshore) had the full calendar for the Independence Day celebration.

Wednesday, July 3 (7 p.m.):  Mississippi Braves v. Mobile Bay Bears, Trustmark Park, Pearl, Mississippi.  It's the Braves' Independence Day Celebration with a "super-sized" fireworks show after the game.

Wednesday, July 3:  City of Brandon 4th of July Celebration.  Don't feel like a "super-sized" celebration?  Why not a toned down version at Shiloh Park in Brandon.  Pie-eating contest, ice cream, watermelon, a parade, and (regular-sized) fireworks.

Thursday, July 4 (7:30 a.m.):  Watermelon Classic, Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame, Jackson, Mississippi.  One of the largest 5K's in the state, benefiting a dang good cause.  And, according to Rick Cleveland, also doubles as the State's 5K championship (well then, count me in!).

Thursday, July 4 (6 p.m.):  Celebrate America Balloon Glow, Northpark Mall, Ridgeland, Mississippi.  It's the 23rd installment of this Jackson area tradition.  David Lee Murphy and Cross'n Dixon provide all the musical entertainment, and fireworks will close out the night around 9:30 p.m.)

Saturday, July 6 (5:30 till):  Championship Hot Air Balloon Fest, Canton Multipurpose Center, Canton, Mississippi. Here's the schedule for the night's events.
5:30 PM – 8 PM Kid’s Fun Area
6:45 PM Balloon Fun Flight
7:45 PM Good Samaritan’s Golf Ball Drop Fundraiser
8:00 PM
 Balloon Glow featuring the Old Lady in the Shoe
9:00 PM Patriotic Firework Spectacular

What have I missed?

Friday, June 21, 2013

Movies-N-Moonlight Review

My son and I took in the Movies-N-Moonlight yesterday evening at Winner's Circle Park, and we had a great time.  There was a good crowd out there with lawn chairs, picnic baskets, and blankets.  Community Trust Bank supplied the bottled water and popcorn; the Flowood Fire Department set up their jumpie-house for the kids.  Many thanks to the City of Flowood, Mississippi National Guard and Flowood Chamber of Commerce for making it happen.  

The next one is July 11, Escape From Planet Earth.

Rankin County Utility Inspection Ordinance

As mentioned in the Overlay Map post below, on Monday of this week, the Rankin County Board of Supervisors approved an ordinance related to home inspections.  In short, every time a home is rented, sold, or ownership of the utility accounts are otherwise changed, the Rankin County Community Development office must inspect the residence.  The purpose is to make sure it is not in violation of any code, ordinance, or otherwise falling into considerable disrepair.  For PRVWSD leasehold lands, the obligation to inspect falls on the District rather than the Community Development office.  There is a $100 fee involved in each inspection.  One inspection for each residence is only necessary within a six month time frame.  

Yesterday, the Board of Directors of the PRVWSD approved the language of the utility ordinance.  

This inspection language was supposed to be a part of the Overlay; however, as I understand it, the Supervisors balked at applying it solely within the geographic boundaries of the Overlay.  As a result, that language was stricken when the Overlay was approved during the March 15, 2013, Board of Supervisors meeting.  Now, the inspection ordinance applies county-wide.  

In practical terms, when you sell your home, the inspection requirement will be another closing cost to negotiate between buyer and seller.  Also, it will be another piece of paperwork in the file your closing attorney makes you sign (along with relinquishment of your first-born).

A draft of the Rankin County ordinance approved by the PRVWSD is below:

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Team Andrew Blood Drive

Reservoir resident, little Andrew Cross, whom I personally know to be one of the most awesome and brave kids around, is battling a form of childhood Leukemia.  There is a blood drive in his honor not this Friday, but next, at the Grants Ferry UMC Physicians office building.  The Mississippi Blood Services Bus will be there between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m.  Save a life, get a shirt.  

Livingston Farmer's Market

The Livingston Farmers Market is this evening over in Madison the County.  I'm certainly not encouraging you to jettison tonight's Movies-N-Moonlight at Winner's Circle Park; however, if you've already seen Madagascar III . . . .

Here is the write up from the LFM homepage:

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

HomeGoods is Coming to Flowood

HomeGoods will soon fill the old Borders Bookstore in the Dogwood Shopping Mall.  I don't know much (or really anything) about HomeGoods.  It looks like a jazzed up Tuesday Morning.  They have a decent blog focusing on simple steps to improving your home and garden (with stuff you buy at HomeGoods).  It's good to see a home for the 30,000 square foot Borders building.  

Here is WAPT's report.

Overlay Map

Below is a copy of the map outlining the Reservoir Community (Overlay) District.  You may have better luck with this link.  You can familiarize yourself with the geographical boundaries of the Overlay District.  Word came in that on Monday, the Board of Supervisors approved the utility inspection portion of the Overlay District, setting the inspection fee at $100.  This will presumably become effective October 1, 2013.  Tomorrow, the PRVWSD is expected to take some action on the inspection fee, perhaps approve their part.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Agenda for June PRVWSD Meeting

Look below at the Agenda for the June 2013 Meeting of the Pearl River Valley Water Supply District.  The June meeting will be held on Thursday the 20th, at 9:30 a.m., at Board headquarters in Ridgeland.  There are a number of important and/or interesting matters on the table, including adoption of an Interlocal Agreement between the Board of Supervisors of Rankin County, Mississippi, and the PRVWSD.  This interlocal agreement will provide for the enactment and enforcement of certain provisions of the Overlay District, specifically, the utility release.

Other important sounding items include the approval of the significantly revamped hunting regulations, and a various and sundry extension of time in which to construct the Hotel Valencia.


Community Trust Bank, through the City of Flowood and the Flowood Chamber, is sponsoring a Movies-N-Moonlight on Thursday, June 20, 2013, at Winner's Circle Park.  The "gates" will open at 6:30 p.m., and the movie will start at dusk. This event is a lot of fun.  The City sets up a large screen in Winner's Circle Park, and folks are encouraged to bring their lawn chairs, blankets, and picnic suppers.  The movie is Madagascar 3, and admission is FREE!  

Throughout the Summer, the City/Chamber will bring you more outdoor movies.  Mark your calendar for July 11, and August 1.  

Friday, June 14, 2013

Independence Day Celebration Info from Barnett Reservoir Foundation

Old Trace Park Schedule for Independence Day Celebration

Below is the Old Trace Park Schedule for Barnett Reservoir Foundation's Independence Day Celebration.  Please note the celebration is not actually on Independence Day.  

Lakeshore Park Independence Day Celebration Schedule

Below is the Lakeshore Park schedule of events for the Barnett Reservoir Foundation's Independence Day Celebration.  

Rankin Leadership Application

In 2010, I took part in a program offered through the Rankin County Chamber of Commerce called "Rankin Leadership."  I cannot remember all the specifics, but at its core it consisted of a 9 month program where the participants (around 30 or so) would meet all day once a month to learn about a certain aspect of Rankin County.  For example, we began with an overnight retreat at Twin Lakes in Florence -- team building, that sort of thing.  Over the succeeding months, we took a number of informative and enjoyable tours concerning Rankin County -- Whitfield, Central Mississippi Women's Correctional Facility, Piney Woods, Air Guard Base, Mississippi Bread Company, a working farm, Board of Supervisors meeting, the State Capitol, etc.  We affectionately referred to them as "adult field trips."  At the onset, we were herded together into groups of 4 or 5.  By the end of the program, our group was to perform some sort of task to improve Rankin County.  Our group picked a local charity and held a fundraiser.

My class mates ranged from attorneys to bankers to small business owners to nurses to non-profit employees to postal workers to National Guard soldiers, etc.  I thoroughly enjoyed the entire program and made many good friends I am still close to today.  Luckily for me, my employer paid the tuition for this program; however, there is a tuition assistance program in place for those that want to take advantage of it.  If you have the freedom and ability to take part in this program, I encourage you to.  Even if you've lived in Rankin County your whole life, there will be many novel experiences for you.  If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at

Application after the jump.

Huge Gator Found Dead in Noxubee WR (Updated Picture)

Thanks to my friends at Bull Nettle News for providing another photo (below):

Huge gator pulled from the Noxubee Wildlife Refuge, with an interesting story to go with it.  This puppy is three feet longer than the average American Alligator, that's over a 25% difference.  In the wild, alligators live to be about 50 years old.  If he was one of the original plants, he would be at least 45 years old.  Good gracious.  News release below the jump.  We certainly don't have the corner on the market on big gators here at the Rez.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Into Geocaching?

Geocaching is growing in popularity.  The State of Mississippi recently caught on, and formed a partnership with the Mississippi Geocachers Association.  The result is the Mississippi Blues Trail Cache Challenge.

Here is a description of the challenge from the Mississippi Geocachers Association webpage:

This project is a joint venture of the following organizations:
  • Mississippi Blues Commission
  • Mississippi Geocachers Association (MSGA)
  • Mississippi Bureau of Tourism (special thanks to the current director, Michael Jones)

Rankin County Board of Supervisors Minutes

In a relatively new move, the Rankin County Board of Supervisors now post the minutes and/or agendas from their monthly meetings online.  Go to this link and read until your heart is content.  They call it "the Meeting Portal".  The minutes go back to March of 2009.  I commend the Rankin County Board of Supervisors for putting these online.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Reservoir Community Center Rental Rules

The Reservoir Community Center is an outstanding asset to our side of the county.  Not only is it set in a beautiful location, but it is roomy, clean, and still has that new car smell to it.  Many may not know it is available for use by us civilians; whether you are having a meeting, birthday party, or game watching party, any one has the ability to rent the facility.  Below, I've posted the Rules and Regulations and Rental Policy for the building.  Not rental is free for non-profit community organizations.  

See prior posts regarding the Community Center here, and here.

Tri 4 Life

The Center for Pregnancy Choices hosts an annual sprint triathlon called the Tri 4 Life on the Rankin County side of the Reservoir.  This year, it will be held on August 10, 2013.  This is a competition smaller in scope than the Heatwave Classic; easier to manage for weekend warriors like myself.  

Race central is the Fannin Landing Boat Ramp.  Swimmers maneuver buoys in the Reservoir for 1/3 mile before getting on their bikes and racing 16 miles around Pelahatchie Bay.  The race ends with a 5K (3.1 miles) run out and back along Fannin Landing and the Causeway.

There were 169 competitors last year.  Race results from 2012 can be found here.  

Register for this year's event here.  Maps of all the courses can be found at this website.  The cost is $55 for early registration for individuals; $140 for a 3 person team, and $100 for a 2 person team.  They have several different participation classifications, including "Fat Tire" for heavily grooved treads commonly found on mountain bikes and beach cruisers, "Athena" (typically for women over 165 pounds), and "Clydesdale" (typically for men over 220 pounds).

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Boat Parade T-Shirts

Play an active part in the upcoming Independence Day Celebration at the Reservoir.  Have a boat, enter it into the Boat Parade.  Don't have a boat, borrow Cousin Eddie's.  The shirts don't look bad.

Enter your boat here.

Executive, Parks Policy and Shoreline Committee Agendas

There are a number of new user fees and/or permits being discussed on the 17th.  If you are concerned, in support of, or simply want to know more about these fees, you may want to attend.  I am unable to attend due to my non-retired status; however, if there is a concerned citizen out there who has the time and desire to attend, send me a write up of the facts (, and I will publish your report on the blog.  

Another point of interest during the Shoreline Committee Meeting?  Wait for it. . . An extension of a provision in the lease to Harbor Walk related a deadline to begin construction of a hotel.

Committee Agendas below the jump.

PRVSWD Forestry and Audit Committee Agendas for June

Agendas are up for the June 17, 2013, Committee meetings for the Pearl River Valley Water Supply District.  Forestry and Audit are posted below.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Black Bear Sightings Up

Coastal Mississippi is seeing higher than normal black bear activity this year. (Associated Press file photo)

Below is a link to an article that appears on the Mississippi Business Journal's website about the increased sightings of Black Bears in Mississippi, especially along the gulf coast area.  

Here is the link.  I don't believe there have been any recent confirmed sightings of Black Bears near the Reservoir (wild hogs as big as bears is another issue).  Anybody out there have any unconfirmed sightings?  

Father-Son Fishing Tournament

The City of Ridgeland hosts its annual Father-Son Fishing Tournament on Saturday, June 15, 2013, at Old Trace Park.  It's laid back.  The fishing starts at 8 a.m. and judging begins at 10 a.m.  There were will awards for biggest fish, most fish, and smallest fish.  No cost to participate.  Thank the City of Ridgeland Parks and Recreation Department along with PRVWSD for hosting this free event on the Rez.

Need more info, go here.

Civil War Relic Show

The City of Brandon's Second Interactive Civil War Relic Show is coming June 22 and 23, 2013, to City Hall.  Information below.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Missing Boater's Body Found and Identified

Around 7:45 a.m., the body of Reggie Puckett was found on the Madison County side of the Pearl River, north of 43.

Video from WAPT here.

13th Annual Kids Triathlon

All the info you need can be found at the official website.  Be advised, its an open water swim, so make sure your 7 year old is comfortable with a 75 yard swim outside of the swimming pool.

Missing Person in the Reservoir (Updated)

Officials are continuing the search of the Reservoir this morning, as they did yesterday afternoon, for a missing person.  According to news sources, there was a boating accident in the lake north of Highway 43 yesterday morning.  A passenger in one of the boats was ejected and is now missing. The missing person's name has not been released.

[Update:  Well, not long after I posted the above, they found the body of Reggie Puckett.  Condolences to his family and friends.  See WAPT's report, here.]

Stay tuned with the following news outlets:


Clarion Ledger

Smartphone App for Rankin County DA's Office

It's been out there for a while, but many readers may not know the Rankin/Madison County District Attorney has a smartphone App.  You can download the App at DA Michael Guest's page, here.

Here is what the press release had to say about the App:

In addition to keeping the public informed on the District Attorney’s Office, the application can be used to locate sex offenders, report criminal activity, and to view the DA’s Most Wanted. The application can be downloaded at or by searching the app store for “DA Michael Guest.”

Guest stated, “Over my time in office, I have strived to keep the public informed and this application will now make this process easier. This application will compliment the efforts we presently have in place. We hope that this application along with the use of Facebook (DA Michael Guest) and Twitter (@DA_MichaelGuest) will create an open line of communication with the community.”

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Now Taking Applications for Lizard Hunting Season

Alligator Hunt Applications 2013

The application period for the State's alligator hunting season opened Monday and continues through June 17.  If you would like to take part, go to the website for the Mississippi Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks, here, and apply (clicking the "Apply Here" button above will get you nowhere since I copied the picture from the State's website without embedded links).  It's free.

Stinky Feet's Thursday Charity Runs

Considering how much they sponsor and do in our community to encourage an active lifestyle and general health, Stinky Feet is a huge asset for the Reservoir area.  One of the many programs they organize is their Thursday afternoon charity run.  Every Thursday at 6:30 p.m., anyone and everyone who wants to, can show up at Genghis Grill at the Dogwood Mall, pay $5, and run a 5K +/- as a group.  There are no medals for finishing 1st place, nor is there any pressure to run your hardest.  You run (or walk) at your own pace; you spend time with others in your community; and its all for a good cause.  Each week, the money generated from the run is donated to a worthy charity.  Last week, I believe it was The Mustard Seed.  Tomorrow, it's Ignite Sports Camp in Pulaski, MS.  There are no qualifications for participating in this charity jog, other than having $5 ready for a good cause.  

Ignite Sports Camp is for boys aged 13-18 and held at the beautiful TimberCreek Camp in Pulaski, MS.  

Young men from all walks of life attend the camp, but there is one common denominator between them all: a love for sports. While providing superior athletic instruction, Ignite Sports Camp also invests much into the most important aspect of a person’s life- a relationship with Jesus Christ. This teaching not only comes from the fantastic speakers that are at camp, but is also lived out by our instructors and counselors. One of the unique components of Ignite Sports Camp is that each of our instructors played their respective sports collegiately and some professionally.

Each camper chooses one of four sports to be instructed in and to hone their skills: football, baseball, basketball, and soccer.

Election Results from Flowood

Kathy Smith (incumbent alderwoman for Ward 2) and Dusty Rhoads (incumbent alderman from Ward 4) all roll easily through re-election.  If the numbers from WAPT and WLBT are accurate, Ward 1 Alderman Deron Harmon wins re-election with a total of 63 votes.  That's votes, not percentage.

Congratulations to the winners!

WAPT Numbers.

WLBT Numbers.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

The Un-Annual Carl Spackler Invitational Golf Tournament

This looks like it could be a lot of fun.  Taken from the official website:

A few years ago, we hosted a "Carl Spackler" tournament at The Refuge and raised more than $10,000.  Now we're doing it again for yet another good cause.  Golf course superintendent Bill Whatley's wife was diagnosed with breast cancer in April and has already undergone her initial surgery/treatment, with more treatments to come.  We want to help Michelle and Bill offset some of the medical bills they will be facing and we thought "What better way than another Carl Spackler tournament?"


Polls are still open for a little while in Flowood.  A couple of those races are contested.  I'll post results a little later once I find reliable results.