It’s Time for Loblolly Festival!

It’s everyone’s favorite time of the year–time for Loblolly Festival! 

This year’s event can’t be missed. It’s going to be the biggest and best Loblolly we have ever hosted–clocking in at over 230 vendors from all over Mississippi.

Loblolly Festival is on Saturday, October 1st from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM. This event is rain or shine, and thankfully, the weather looks perfect!

Know Before You Go

  • Furry friends are allowed to attend the festival, but be mindful of city leash laws and please pick up after your pets.
  • Loblolly Festival is free! 
  • Keep the City ‘Beautiful’! Make sure to discard pet waste, food, and garbage in trash receptacles.
  • When you’re sippin’ and strolling, make sure to follow the city’s open container laws, and stay in the leisure district.
  • Ample parking is available in outer lots. Don’t be afraid to get your steps in!
  • Visit the Laurel Main Street trailer to get this year’s Loblolly T-shirts! $25, limited quantity

What is Loblolly?

We get so many questions every year surrounding the name and history of this event. Check out some of our past blogs to read more about the history of Loblolly Festival and of Laurel, MS.

Loblolly Festival: Celebrating the Town that Timber Built

Loblolly: The Power of the Historical Name

Vendors

Expect plenty of unique vendors, including all kinds of food & drink, arts & crafts, and organizations. This year’s event is completely packed for the first time in history!

Demonstrations vary, but a crowd favorite is Dayton Scoggins, the chainsaw artist. Dayton will be on-hand this year selling his creations, as well as demonstrating the art of chainsaw sculpture.

Live Entertainment

One of the best parts about about Loblolly Festival is the entertainment. The line-up this year is not to be missed!

Bring your lawn chair, grab a beer from the Southern Beverage trailer, and enjoy music all day long.

Main Stage (located on Front Street)

  • 9:00 AM- 10:00 AM Stephen Wade Scott
  • 10:30 AM- Noon Ra’Shad the Blues Kid
  • 12:30 PM- 2:00 PM Tyler Tisdale
  • 2:30 PM- 4:00 PM Red & the Revelers

The Knight Butcher Stage (Central Avenue)

  • 11:00 AM- 12:30 PM Jesse Howell
  • 12:30 PM- 3:00 PM BIG

Kids Activities

Head on down to 5th avenue to check out the Kids Zone, full of fun for all ages like jump houses, activities, and games.

Shop Small

Don’t forget to eat and shop with our Downtown businesses this Saturday! Get your day started as early as 6:00AM with a loaded tea from Forever Nutrition and end your night at one of our amazing restaurants with even more live music, like 320FifthStreet.

Scarecrow Invasion 2022

This year’s Scarecrow Invasion debuts on September 30th, and will last through October 31st. Loblolly Festival is the perfect time to get out and view these whimsical creations!

Get ready for something new! Vote for your favorite scarecrow display in the “People’s Choice” category on our Facebook page. Voting begins October 2nd.

Other Fun Around Town

Our friends at Laurel Arts League are hosting the annual “Art on Masonite” competition at the YWCO for viewing during Loblolly Festival. Sit down, enjoy the AC, and support our talented young artists around Jones County!

The 30th Annual Heritage Arts Festival will take place on the lawn at Lauren Rogers Museum of art from 10:00AM- 1:00 PM during the festival. Best part? It’s free!


We can’t wait for Loblolly Festival, and we hope that you and your family join us this year! #loblollylover

Sign Up to Volunteer with Us!

Are you looking for a way to be involved in the Downtown Laurel community and Laurel Main Street? We have a variety of volunteer opportunities throughout the year, and we’d love to have you or your organization or club as a partner for volunteering. Please fill out the form to register as an official LMS Volunteer!

Click Here to sign up!

Volunteering with Laurel Main Street means SO much! As an LMS volunteer, you are lending a helping hand to those who attend our events and aiding in the growth and revitalization of America’s Hometown, Laurel. You will get to be a part of events like Loblolly Festival, Downtown Countdown the Chili Cook Off, Crawfest, and so much more!

We are thankful for our past volunteers and volunteer organizations and we are looking forward to working with so many new volunteers! Will you be next??

Final Downtown Thursday of the Summer

Do you love homemade and homegrown items? Are you looking for a place to relax on a Thursday evening? Shop for those Mississippi-grown items at the Laurel Farmers Market, and then relax with some live music and a movie night on the FINAL Downtown Thursday of the summer!

This Thursday, July 14, will be our last Downtown Thursday of the summer! First, join us for the farmers market and live music featuring Charayana & Band from 5 to 8 PM. Then, settle down in the back lot to enjoy an outdoor movie night featuring Encanto.

Everyone has had so much fun on Downtown Thursdays, and we don’t want you to miss your chance to join in on the fun! Thank you to Central Sun Belt and all volunteers who make Downtown Thursdays with the Laurel Farmers Market and Downtown Movie Night possible!! Laurel Main Street is so happy to be a part of this event that makes summertime in Downtown extra fun!

PRESS RELEASE: New Officers, Members elected to MMSA Board

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEMedia Contact: Jeannie Zieren, Director of Communication & MarketingEmail: jeannie@msmainstreet.com, Tel: 601-339-2042

NEW OFFICERS, MEMBERS ELECTED TO 2022-2023 MISSISSIPPI MAIN STREET BOARD OF DIRECTORSJACKSON, Miss. (June 29, 2022) – A new executive committee, three at-large board members, and a directors’ representative have been elected to the Mississippi Main Street Association (MMSA) Board of Directors to lead the efforts of the statewide community and economic development organization for 2022-2023.

Michelle Jones of Starkville, Miss. has been elected to serve as MMSA board president for 2022-2023.

“It is an exciting time to be a part of Mississippi Main Street, and I’m looking forward to working with the board, Main Street directors, and community leaders across the state this year,” Jones said.

Jones was the Certified Local Government Coordinator for the Mississippi Department of Archives and History from 1994-2019.  She helped establish the Starkville Main Street program in 2010 and has served in numerous volunteer capacities in Starkville.  She and her husband Briar own The Cottage Industry Starkville that has rehabilitated numerous historic homes in Starkville, and she works with the Vernacular Architecture Forum as the conference planner.

The newly-elected MMSA executive officers are: President Michelle Jones, owner of The Cottage Industry Starkville; Vice-President Marlo Dorsey, executive director of Visit Hattiesburg in Hattiesburg; Treasurer Chris Hinton, community development manager at Entergy in Jackson; and Past President Chis Chain, president of Renovations of Mississippi, Inc. in Columbus.

New at-large board members elected to serve include Kelle Barfield, owner of Lorelei Books and Delta Warren Properties in Vicksburg; Mandy Hegwood, Vice President of Neel-Schaffer, Inc. in Laurel; and Chance McDavid, Project Director at John C. Stennis Institute of Government & Community Development in Starkville.

A new Directors’ Representative has also been elected to the state board by the directors of the 48 designated Main Street programs in Mississippi. Cynthia Sutton, director of the Ocean Springs Chamber – Main Street – Tourism Bureau, was elected to represent District 1 of the local programs in the state. She joins Jamie Sowell of Senatobia Main Street who represents District 2, and Lori Tucker of Booneville Main Street and Tourism who represents District 3 in the state.

Board members continuing to serve on the state board include: Tomeka Durr-Wiley, commercial development project manager at Mississippi Power in Gulfport; Regina Charboneau, owner of Regina’s Kitchen in Natchez; Brent Fairley, senior vice president/market president at Hancock Whitney Bank in Gulfport; Jim Rosenblatt, dean emeritus and professor at Mississippi College Law School in Jackson; Carolyn McAdams, mayor of the city of Greenwood; Brad Reeves, attorney at Randall Segrest in Jackson; Steve Kelly, board member emeritus; Ken P’Pool, board member emeritus; Lydia Charles, grants administrator at the Mississippi Department of Archives & History; Leah Kemp, director of the Fred Carl Jr. Small Town Center at Mississippi State University; and Laura Hipp, deputy executive director of the Mississippi Development Authority.

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Download Photo of Michelle Jones, 2022-2023 MMSA Board President

The mission of the Mississippi Main Street Association is to be a catalyst for the preservation and economic revitalization of Mississippi’s historic downtowns and districts.The Mississippi Main Street Association provides visionary leadership to Mississippi’s most storied places. We foster economic and community development through strategies that promote community engagement, pride of place, and quality design to achieve long-term economic growth. MMSA empowers Mississippi’s local Main Street leaders to create vibrant places and thriving economies by implementing the Main Street Approach — organization, design, promotion, and economic vitality. Since 1993, MMSA has provided more than $5 billion in public and private re-investment back into Main Street communities. For more information, visitwww.msmainstreet.com.

Laurel Main Street Winner of the Outstanding Community Engagement Effort Award

Thomas Steinwinder with MMSA Executive Director Thomas Gregory

Outstanding Community Engagement Effort – This award recognizes an effort by a local Main Street program that brings a diverse cross-sector of the community together for a common purpose.

Winner: Laurel Main Street – Laurel Leap Day Tournament

“One of our most closely held beliefs is that good events can bridge gaps between cultures, demographics, and individuals. In an area where high school sports still fill bleachers in gyms and stadiums, a street ball tournament had all the markings of community engagement. Laurel Leap Day (a pun on both basketball and the leap year) took place the last Saturday in February, and it was a resounding success. The main event was an elimination-style tournament. 3-on-3 streetball sparked all the competition and fun Laurel Main Street could have hoped for, with crowds cheering for their favorite teams and players.

20 teams banded together to compete for the $500 top prize and, of course, bragging rights. For those who lost the tournament, a slam dunk competition and a three-point shoot-off gave chances for redemption. Attendees milled about shopping at downtown businesses and munching on the street fair food. With entry fees and sponsorships, the event was both free to the public and a fantastic fundraiser.”