River should be a draw when it’s low

Published 12:18 am Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Silver Street is closed to through-traffic, at least of the four-wheeled kind, but ironically, it’s getting more two-footed traffic than the historic street has seen in years. And that’s a shame.

Perhaps not since the opening of the original Lady Luck Casino gambling boat or perhaps the last Floozy Day event at Natchez Under-the-Hill have so many locals made the trek down Silver Street to see such a spectacle.

Only, the recent river walks have come with far less hype and far less fanfare. The rain-swollen Mississippi River has been creeping ever so higher over the last several weeks.

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Low-lying areas of our community have been flooded for several weeks. Most of those residents know the drill. When the river rises, they get out of its way. But this week, the river moved into historical levels.

Last week, the river finally began touching Silver Street. Over the weekend, it gobbled up the space normally reserved for tourists and other river watchers.

Unfortunately, forecasters say the river will rise another couple of feet before it crests in another week or so.

So that likely means even more of the curious will head down to the riverside to take a peek, look in awe of the Mighty Mississippi’s power and snap a photo or two.

We like the interest in the riverfront. It’s one of our city’s best assets, but we wish it didn’t take a near natural disaster to bring out the residents and taxpayers.

Imagine if all of the sightseers got involved in cleaning up the bluffs and the riverfront or in raising funds for projects such as the Natchez Trails Project. The Mighty Mississippi might have a rival in Mighty Natchez.