Riverside Drive Project Goes Out for Bid on August 31

It has been over five years since the City of Jackson invited the neighborhood to the Eudora Welty Library to discuss design options for Riverside Drive now the project is finally moving forward.  According to City Engineer, Robert Lee the project goes out for bid on August 31st.  A start date for the project has not yet been set.

The design that is being bid out includes Riverside being reduced to two traffic lanes, adding a multi-purpose trail, and retains the median with the oak trees.  A cross section of the design can be viewed above.  According to the City Engineer, Robert Lee an arborist has looked at the trees and has determined that they can remain.  There are up to six trees that may require removal once the project begins, but those are the only trees that would be removed.

Pete Perry with the One-Cent Tax Commission said, “The work will be between the I55 bridge and Peachtree, with the exception that there will be some waterline replacement between Peachtree and the water tower at N State, along with necessary road repairs in that section.”  Perry has provided this detailed list of what the project will consist of:

  • Remove the current road; excavate some six feet and replace with quality fill, including a barrier designed to mitigate the Yazoo clay impact; New pavement for a two-lane road – one lane north of the median and one lane south.  The median is to remain as it is currently, but with new curb and gutters.
  • Replace the 18″ waterline that basically feeds Belhaven and the water tower at N State.  The 18″ waterline is supposedly 100+ years old.
  • Replace the 36″ waterline that runs under Riverside to Peachtree (at that point it turns and goes to Woodrow Wilson and serves west Jackson.)  The 36″ waterline is approximately 50 years old.
  • Repair as needed the sanitary sewer line that runs under the current roadbed.
  • Replace/Repair the storm sewer lines
  • Construct a sidewalk along the south side of the new roadbed
  • Construct a walking trail along the north side of the new roadbed
  • Create a connecting walk from Myrtle to the bridge (created by the walking trail along the railroad bed project)

This project is being funded by the One-Percent Tax Commission.  The commission oversees the city’s one-percent infrastructure sales tax. Perry says the current estimate for the project is somewhere around $11 million – of which some $4 million is for water/sewer repair and replacement.

Bright Lights Belhaven Nights Announces Music Line Up for 2021

The Greater Belhaven Neighborhood Foundation is pleased to announce that 17th annual street festival, Bright Lights Belhaven Nights, (BLBN) is scheduled for Saturday, August 14, 2021, 5:00 p.m.—11:00 p.m., in the historic Belhaven neighborhood. This family fun event presented by Mississippi Baptist Medical Center, C Spire, The Manship and Southern Beverage Company will feature live music on two stages, as well as local, handmade craft vendors and the most delicious food and beverages from Mississippi’s restaurants and breweries.

This year’s featured headliner, Perpetual Groove, has been one of the most sought-after bands on the Jam/roots circuit. They have headlined numerous festivals nationwide including Bonnaroo. After a rejuvenating hiatus, the band has returned with the band’s songwriters incorporating elements of pop and even EDM into the traditional P. Groove sound. Perpetual Groove released their seventh studio album, entitled simply, Perpetual Groove.

2021 Music Line-Up

7:00 PM: Southern Komfort Brass Band (second line through the streets)

BELHAVEN PARK STAGE

5:30 – 6:15 PM: Fondren Guitars Rock Band

6:45 – 7:45 PM: Taylor Hildebrand

8:15 – 9:15 PM: TB Ledford

9:30 – 10:45 PM: Schaefer Llana

CARLISLE STAGE

5:15 – 6:00 PM: Southern Komfort Brass Band

6:30 – 7:30 PM: Tatum Henry

8:00 – 9:00 PM: The Red Clay Strays

9:30 – 11:00 PM: Perpetual Groove

Set in the historic Belhaven neighborhood, the street festival is an end-of-the-summer tradition that celebrates all things that make Greater Belhaven a great place to work, live and play, including art, music, children’s activities and food. Bright Lights Belhaven Nights has repeatedly been named a Top 20 Event in the Southeast for the month of August by the Southeast Tourism Society. The historic Belhaven neighborhood also was designated as one of American Planning Association’s “Great Neighborhoods in America 2014.”

Advance tickets are $15 per person and are available online at www.greaterbelhaven.com/events/bright-lights-belhaven-nights-event/ or $20 at the gate (cash only). Children ages 12 and under are free and must be with a supervising adult at all times. Gates open at 5:00 p.m.

The festival will extend along Carlisle Street from Corner Market’s parking lot toward New Stage Theatre, and also turn onto Kenwood Place and extend into Belhaven Park. Free parking will be available along Belhaven streets that have not been closed off, and in the parking garage adjacent to Baptist Health Systems Medical Arts East at the corner of North and Carlisle Streets. The entry gates will be located on Carlisle and Poplar Streets.

To learn more about Bright Lights Belhaven Nights including the band line-up and featured artist, find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/belhavennights, follow us on Instagram at www.instagram.com/greaterbelhaven and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/greaterbelhaven, visit us at www.greaterbelhaven.com/blbn or call 601-352-8850.

GBF, a non-profit group governed by a board of directors, works to improve and revitalize the area through long-range planning, economic restructuring, historic preservation, green space enhancement, and improvement of Fortification Street, the major east-west corridor between the two neighborhoods.

Greater Belhaven Foundation Announces Next Step in CID Process

The Greater Belhaven Foundation (GBF) is excited to announce that the owners of more than 60% of the taxable parcels in Greater Belhaven have signed the petition requesting the creation of a Community Improvement District (CID). GBF submitted the petition to the City Clerk’s office on Thursday, May 6, 2021. Once signatures are verified and City has accepted the petition, GBF will submit an initial strategic plan for the first year of the CID. After this, the City will set a date for a special election at which registered voters in Greater Belhaven may vote on the proposal to create the CID. Proceeds from the CID funds will total around $200,000 annually. They can be used for a variety of projects including landscaping, parks, infrastructure, security enhancement, and even as matching funds for grants for larger-scale projects.

“We are excited about the potential for CID funds to make Belhaven an even greater place to live, work, and raise a family,” said Margaret Oertling Cupples, CID Committee Chair. “We encourage everyone to get out and vote in favor of the CID later this year.”

Greater Belhaven, consisting of the Belhaven and Belhaven Heights neighborhoods, is comprised of over 1700 single family and multifamily homes as well as numerous businesses.  GBF began collecting signatures for the CID in October 2019. Despite the global pandemic, property owners realized the benefit of a CID for the historic neighborhood and have helped to surpass the 60% signature requirement.

Community Improvement Districts enhance urban and suburban areas by improving safety, reducing blight, and increasing property values and job opportunities at local businesses.

“I am so excited to have completed this part of the process and am so thankful for the neighborhood support,” said Casey Creasey, Executive Director of GBF. “The CID will be such a benefit to our community allowing enhancements for our three neighborhood parks, sidewalk improvements, and other features. Funds can also be used for security,  lighting, minor infrastructure repair, long-range planning, and so much more. We would love to hear from Greater Belhaven residents and property owners with your ideas for improvements.”

Legislation requires that a CID plan and funds be managed by a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, like GBF. The funds, a maximum of $6 per every $1000 of assessed value of a parcel, will be collected with property taxes yearly by the City of Jackson and disbursed to GBF. CID proceeds must be maintained separately from other GBF funds, with strict accounting, audit, and public disclosure guidelines.

For more information click here https://greaterbelhaven.com/community-improvement-district/

Thank you for Supporting the Greater Belhaven Foundation

Isn’t Greater Belhaven lovely? She’s got on her multicolored, autumn wardrobe and seems poised to celebrate this special time of year. There aren’t many neighborhoods this beautiful or friendly in our city, or anywhere for that matter. People on almost every block know each other and visit frequently in in their yards or when we walk our dogs.

We’ve got problems, yes. But we also have solutions. Through your Greater Belhaven Foundation, we work to make our neighborhood better every day. Currently, our attention is centered on getting Greater Belhaven approved as a Community Improvement District. We need 60 per cent of our registered voters to gain approval for this initiative which we hope to complete this month. For you as property owners, it means just 6 mills more in property tax for every $1,000 of your property’s assessed value. For our neighborhood, your signature means designated funds that can be used for security, maintenance, improvements to parks and infrastructure, beautification through plantings, signage and blighted property acquisition.

But CID passage is just one of our initiatives. In cooperation with the Belhaven Heights Neighborhood Association, the Belhaven Improvement Association and the Belhaven Security Association, the Foundation also has worked to support the funding of the Fortification Street Project, the elimination of many encroachments to our neighborhood, the clearing and cleaning of blighted property, the creation of the Belhaven Town Center – and the many events that promote Greater Belhaven such as the annual Bright Lights, Belhaven Nights and Art in the Park.

All of these things, however, cost money. There are many wonderful nonprofit causes that you and your family might donate to at this time of year. But we hope you’ll make one of your year- end gifts to your neighborhood organization, the Greater Belhaven Foundation. An envelope is enclosed for your convenience in replying. Please let one of us know if you have questions – and thank you for being one of the more than 1800 Jacksonians who call Greater Belhaven home.

Message from John Lewis with the Greater Belhaven Security Association

Between now and the end of the year, please following these Security Measures:

  • -BE ALERT & AWARE of your surroundings at ALL times! When you are in vulnerable
    situations, pay attention to what is going on around you.
  • -If you see something suspicious, PLEASE CALL our Securitas Officer immediately.
    They are likely just around the corner and can get there in just a few minutes.
  • -Please put this number in your phone, under “SECURITY” or “SECURITAS”:
    601-720-6452. When you call, please give them as much detailed info as possible.
  • -Call JPD too! Often our Securitas Officer will also call JPD if it is security situation
    that will potentially need law enforcement to effectively deal with. Given the sizes
    of our Police Precincts, it may take a while for them to get to our neighborhoods.
  • -DO NOT leave any valuables (gifts, packages, laptops, jewelry, cash, credit cards, etc)
    in your cars! Especially overnight! Take them INSIDE your home. We do NOT want
    our great neighborhoods to be known as the “Shopping Destinations” of the criminal
    element in Jackson!
  • -If you see something suspicious, PLEASE CALL our Securitas Officer immediately @
    601-720-6452. They are likely just around the corner and can get there in just a few
    minutes. They can “check out” the situation and deal with it as needed.
  • -Be sure ALL of your exterior lights are working! The new LED light fixtures and bulbs
    use very little electricity and put out tons of bright light! Add more if needed!
  • -BE AWARE of your surroundings at ALL times! When you are in vulnerable situations,
    pay attention to what is going on around you.
  • -Help us increase our JPD Night Watch Patrols by joining GBSA! For $30 a month, you
    can help be a huge part of a greater law enforcement presence in our neighborhood!
    For more information, please call Adam @ 601-353-0800 or click on GBSA on the Greater
    Belhaven Foundation’s website!
  • -If you are a Greater Belhaven property owner, please SIGN the C.I.D. Petition, ASAP! Just
    over $100,000/year, of the money that will be generated, will be dedicated to enhancing
    security in our neighborhoods. Cameras, more patrols, enhanced security measures, and
    many other things can be implemented, IF we get the petition signed and the CID voted on!

Make A Christmas Carol A Part of Your Holiday Tradition

New Stage Theatre’s traditional holiday gift to the community—A Christmas Carol, A Ghost Story of Christmas—opens on Thursday, December 5 and runs through Sunday, December 22. Curtain times for public performances are 7:30 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. on Sundays. Tickets can be purchased at the box office, located inside the Jane Reid Petty Theatre Center, charged by phone by calling the theatre at (601) 948-3533 or ordered online at www.newstagetheatre.com. The production is sponsored by First Commercial Bank and St. Dominic’s.

New Stage Theatre returns with a holiday tradition! Ebenezer Scrooge is a wealthy man, rich in money and poor in spirit. He’s locked his solitary heart into a cashbox and forgotten where he’s put the key. Haunted by specters and visited by spirits of his past, present, and future, he journeys from the painful losses of his youth to the human kindness and deep joy of a glorious Christmas morning. Dicken’s classic tale reawakens the true spirit of Christmas in a heart-stirring Carol of profound beauty and redemption.

“We are excited to produce the traditional holiday favorite A Christmas Carol for our 54th season,” said Artistic Director Francine Thomas Reynolds. “Since New Stage first staged an adaptation of the Dickens’ novella, in 1984, no play has been as consistently produced at the theatre as A Christmas Carol. Five actors have played the role of Scrooge and 13 directors have helmed the production throughout the years. The theatre has delighted Mississippi audiences with four adaptations of the timeless Charles Dickens classic.”

“New Stage Theatre has produced A Christmas Carol twenty-four times,” continues Reynolds. “From life-size puppets to flying ghosts, some traditions have changed over the years but the powerful story of redemption in A Christmas Carolremains the same and will enchant audiences with its message of selfless giving. A Christmas Carol has everything: great story telling, singing, dancing, special effects and heart. I am looking forward to our audiences experiencing this production being performed by a cast of 18 adults and 14 youth actors.”

This year’s cast features familiar faces and new talent. Cast members include Turner Crumbley (New Orleans) as Scrooge, Christopher Sferra (Jackson) as Bob Cratchit, Sam Lovorn (Clinton) as Fred, Mandy Kate Myers (Pearl) as Christmas Past, Joseph Frost (Jackson) as Christmas Present, Christan McLaurin (Nashville, TN) as Mr. Fezziwig, De-De Odom (Hattiesburg) as Mrs. Fezziwig, Malaika Quarterman (Jackson) as Mrs. Cratchit, Ethan Hartfield (Brandon) as Tiny Tim, and Chris Roebuck (Ridgeland) as Marley. Crumbley appears through the courtesy of Actors’ Equity Association.

Other cast members include Drew Stark (Jackson), Cameron Pitre (Jackson), Andrew Fehrenbacher (Clinton), Jasmine Rivera (Jackson), Jeffrey Cornelius (Jackson), Willis Thigpen (Jackson), Jameson Williams (Brandon), Darby Frost (Jackson), Marshall Robertson (Newton), Nehemiah Thompson (Jackson), Rivka Quarterman (Jackson), Kendra Quarterman (Jackson), Lucy Jones (Madison), Olivia Mathews (Brandon), Chloe Vizier (Jackson), Treasure White (Jackson), Avery Stallings (Jackson), Jenn Harris (Brandon), Jaymi Horn (Jackson), Kyle Devin Hunter (Jackson), Zion Wood (Jackson), and Ellie Boisseau (Jackson).

Special Holiday Events at New Stage Theatre During A Christmas Carol, A Ghost Story of Christmas

Toys for Tots: December 5 – December 7

·      We will offer $25 tickets to those who bring a new unwrapped toy to the performances December 5-7. Customers must bring the item to the window and purchase tickets at that time. One toy per ticket. Tickets are subject to availability. Tickets can be purchased in advance during box office hours.
·      New Stage will continue to collect toys through December 12

Give the Gift of Theatre this Holiday Season!

·      Gift certificates, Mini-Flex Passes, Education Classes, and Summer Camps make the perfect holiday gifts. Contact the box office for details.

Assisted Listening Devices: Available at every performance. Please call the box office to reserve a device.

Actor Chat: Wednesday, December 11 and Wednesday, December 18
·      Stay after the show and ask questions of the cast and crew

A Christmas Carol Performances:

December 5-7, 11-14 & 17-21 at 7:30 p.m.
December 8, 15, & 22 at 2 p.m.
All 10 a.m. School Matinees are Sold Out

Ticket prices:

$35
$30 for students, seniors, and military
Group discounts are available

Purchase Tickets:

601-948-3533
www.newstagetheatre.com

Community Improvement District Town Hall Meetings

We have three upcoming Town Hall Meeting regarding the proposed Community Improvement District that will take place at the Greater Belhaven Foundation Office located at 954 E. Fortification Street.  Parking is limited so please park at Froogel’s and walk down.

·         Monday, November 18 at 5:30 p.m.

·         Tuesday, November 26 at 7:30 a.m.

·         Tueday, December 3 at 5:30 p.m.

If you are unable to attend and would like more information please call or email Casey Creasey to set up a time to discuss the Petition and what the Community Improvement District can do for Greater Belhaven, 601-352-8850 ccreasey@greaterbelhaven.com

2019 Being Belhaven Annual Party

Thank you to everyone who braved the cold Tuesday night to join us for our yearly party.  A special thank you goes out to our hosts Hailey and Jack Allin.  We celebrated all that is happening in Greater Belhaven and the many great things headed our way.  Our outgoing Board members who have served two terms are Barbara Austin, Claire Barksdale, Rob Pearigen and Bart Delashmet.  Their commitment to our neighborhood has been amazing.  We welcomed our new board members Jason Agostinelli, Ruffin Lowry and Hope Carter, we are honored that they are volunteering their time and talents. 

Special awards were given to honor those who have gone above and beyond to help make Greater Belhaven all it can be.  Tamar and Peter Sharp are this year’s recipients of the “Heart of Belhaven Award”.  The Sharps purchased The Fairview Inn in 2006 and have been gracious and generous neighbors ever since.  Rob Farr is the recipient of this year’s Cavitt Taff Volunteer of the Year Award.  Farr is the chair of the Foundation’s design team.  This year he has organized to planning charrettes for Fortification Street, is helping in the Community Improvement District efforts, has helped with security planning, and has been the sounding board for several ideas and concepts.  Thank you to the Sharps and to Rob Farr for all you do for Greater Belhaven.

Puppets in the Park is Saturday Morning

The Being Belhaven Art Series presents “The Carnival of the Animals” at Belhaven Park, 100 Poplar Blvd., on Saturday, November 2, 2019 at 10:30 AM.

CARNIVAL OF THE ANIMALS is, in the words of the French composer, Camille Saint-Saens, a grand zoological fantasy for orchestra. PUPPET ARTS THEATRE, inspired by this famous musical score, set the show in a circus. It is a hilarious romp through animal, clown and other creature acts like chickens on a seesaw and tortoise and the hare re-creating their famous race. Rabbits on a trampoline and a six foot tall bird are featured in this show designed to entertain.
PUPPET ARTS THEATRE is a professional touring company under the direction of Peter Zapletal, an award-winning puppetry producer. His television specials, produced for Mississippi Public Broadcasting, have been seen nationwide on PBS. Mr. Zapletal received MA degree in puppetry from the Academy for Performing Arts in Prague, Czech Republic. He will be joined on stage by Olivia Hansford and Lesley Raybon. Jarmila Zapletal, a professional puppet maker and designer, shared in the creation of the puppets and the sets for the production.

Bring your blankets and chairs. Admission is free thanks to a grant from the Mississippi Arts Commission and our Art Series Sponsors: Keifer’s, Fenian’s, Mississippi Baptist Health Systems, Funderburg Sessums & Peterson, & Bradley Arant Boult Cummings.

Belhaven Boo Starts at 6pm!!!

Happy Halloween! The Belhaven Garden Club has been hard at work creating a Spooky Scene on Belvoir Place. Trick or Treating, games, music, face painting and food!! Belhaven Boo starts at 6pm with gates located at Belvoir/Riverside and Belvoir/Linden. $3 per person. The Greater Belhaven Foundation will also be there with information on the Community Improvement District as the Petition for interested parties to sign.