Archived Story

Balloon Race is Natchez’s time to shine

Published 12:01am Wednesday, October 16, 2013

The balloon wind spinners are twirling, the welcome signs are up and a few prayers for great weather have already been lifted.

The Great Mississippi River Balloon Race is just days away, and its start means big bucks, big fun and one big reunion for Natchez.

Many natives who’ve moved away are always sure to make a trip home for balloon race. Locals are equally as sure not to plan out-of-town travel for this weekend.

The result will be thousands of feet on the streets starting Friday.

That’s a good thing, despite the increased traffic.

The weekend is equivalent to — or better than — a Thanksgiving week black Friday for businesses and restaurants in downtown Natchez.

Pig Out Inn will serve pounds and pounds of pork, Fat Mama’s will knock a few too many naked and vendors inside the festival gates will fry up funneled goodness after funneled goodness.

But things won’t go off without a hitch without a little help from all of us, the host-city residents.

You can do your part for Natchez’s biggest weekend by pulling your hospitality hat out now. Clean up your yard, pick up trash on your bluff-side walks and brush up on the who, where, when and what of the weekend.

When the visitors arrive, be ready to give directions, move out of the way and smile despite the stress of crowds. Oh, and enjoy the weekend. It’s Natchez’s best, weather permitting, of course.