STARKVILLE — Hopefully, rain won”t threaten the Friday night boogie this year.
The second annual Downtown Block Party, the first installment of the 2011 New South Weekends events, will be held from 6-8 p.m. on Sept. 23, the night before Mississippi State University hosts Louisiana Tech.
The free event will be take place on Main Street, where live music, a tailgating-wear fashion show, multi-cultural food tastings by various international student organizations at MSU and kids village with inflatable jumpers will be available free of charge, the Starkville Convention and Visitors Bureau announced Tuesday.
Last year, a storm put a damper on the festivities and only 1,500 people attended the event. With increased marketing for New South Weekends, Greater Starkville Development Partnership Vice President for Tourism Development and Starkville Main Street Manager Jennifer Gregory expects to triple that figure this year.
“Weather was a contributing factor to what we thought was very low attendance last year,” Gregory said. “But this year, our plans to reduce the event space to one block and the reduce the time frame by an hour will provide a better, family-friendly environment. We”re excited about it.”
The CVB will announce the entertainment lineup and merchant information at a later date. Gregory said bands will be local. Last year, Jeff and Jeff, Bill Cooke and Drew and Johnny played the event.
Which block the event will take place on is still up in the air. Last year, the event was held from the intersection of Main Street and Washington Street to the intersection of Main Street and Jackson Street. Gregory said she”s still finalizing restaurant participation and work with city officials to maximize exposure for local businesses.
Another change will be on stage, where the bands will be separate from the fashion show, which will have its own elevated stage.
The Main Street Block Party is sponsored by Starkville Main Street Association and Mississippi State University Holmes Cultural Diversity Center. The event will be the first of four Friday night events in the CVB”s New South Weekends push to maximize exposure for Starkville.
Other events are Pumpkinpalooza on Oct. 14; Bulldog Family Frenzy on Nov. 4; and Bulldog Bash on Nov. 11.
For more information, visit the CVB website www.visit.Starkville.org.
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