Jackblog entries for July, 2012 | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Blog: Jackblog

Entries for July, 2012


July 21, 2012

Concert at The Cedars Rescheduled for Monday

By Todd Stauffer

After the Fondren "C Spire Summer Music Series" concert originally scheduled for Thursday was rained out, organizers have decided to move the concert to Monday, July 23. The event is free to the public and picnics are encouraged, although coolers are not. (Soft drinks and beer available onsite.) The concert features local bluegrass group the Vernon Brothers on the front porch of the historic Cedars House, located on Old Canton Road just south of Meadowbrook Road in Jackson.

Verbatim release:

Thursday nights' concert at The Cedars has been rescheduled for Monday, July 23

Join us this coming Monday night, July 23, for the C Spire Summer Music Series at The Cedars featuring the Vernon Brothers. Rain might have delayed our original date but there is no reason to cancel some summer fun!

Get together with your family and friends over the weekend and make your plans to attend this incredible night of music and fun. If you have never heard the Vernon Brothers, you are in for a real treat. They are a fantastic mix of country, bluegrass and hillbilly - just perfect for the "front porch" stage at The Cedars! Mother nature is showing she is all clear on Monday, so bring a blanket or lawnchair and a picnic supper - no beverage coolers please. Brown Bottling will be on hand with a variety of Pepsi product offerings as well as Aquafina Water. Southern Beverage will be offering a selection of craft beers as well as two popular regular varieties. Beer will be $4.00 in bottles - craft beers available will be Covington Strawberry, Shock Top Lemon Shandy, Tallgrass 8-Bit Pale, Diamond Bear Pale Ale, Steven's Point Belgian White, Back Forty Truck Stop Honey and Back Forty Naked Pig - new 8% craft beers we will have available are Steven's Point Raspberry Saison and Steven's Point Whole Hog 6 - Hop IPA - we will also offer Bud Light and Michelob Ultra.

Worried about the mosquitoes? No need, we will spray again Monday after the rain from the weekend! The Cedars is located at 4145 Old Canton Road and as always, convenient parking is available across the street at St. Andrew's Lower School.

So, join us in Fondren this coming Monday night for this great night offamily fun and entertainment starting at 6:00 p.m. - and remember, it's FREE! See you there!

A special thanks to all of our sponsors. This Fondren Renaissance Event is presented by C Spire in cooperation with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Mississippi, Pepsi, Southern Beverage and Trustmark. Mark your calendars now for the last concert in this series on August 16, "Delta Honky Tonk Night" featuring Pryor and The Tombstones.

July 20, 2012

Feds Identify Gunman in Denver 'Batman' Shooting

By Todd Stauffer

According to the Denver Post, 50 people were shot and 12 are dead during a midnight showing of the latest Batman film in Aurora, Colorado. The gunman has been arrested, and is identified as a 24-year-old white male with no apparent terrorist ties. Some reports are naming the suspect, James Holmes.

The suspect had a handgun, rifle and gas mask, and is reported to have thrown an "explosive" into the audience, thought is some reports to have been tear gas.

Witnesses report a horrific scene that included the shooting of children and teenagers.

July 17, 2012 | 2 comments

Abortion Clinic Not on the 'Brink' of Closure

By R.L. Nave

How could the clinic already be on its way to being shut down if the judge said it could remain in operation while its paperwork is reviewed? It makes more sense once you read the AP piece.

July 11, 2012 | 2 comments

MSNBC's Extended Shout-out to JFP

By Todd Stauffer

The Rachel Maddow show did a long segment last night tying the inaction in Congress (yet another meaningless vote on "Obamacare") to action in Mississippi -- a court case to determine whether Mississippi legislators overstepped in trying to close down the state's only remaining clinic where abortions are performed.

The court case, which was Tweeted, live-blogged and throughly photographed by JFP team coverage on Wednesday, got the attention the Maddow show, which quoted extensively from our piece. Enjoy!

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Props to the whole team!

July 10, 2012 | 1 comment

Finally... A Fish-Shaped Cat Litter Box

By Todd Stauffer

This was just came over the wires and was too juicy to pass up -- brand new from IOVO designs it the new Litterfish, a cat litter box that's not only "attractive" -- it's shaped like a fish -- it's also "functional," according to the press release.

Presumably, that means that cats can poop in it.


The Litterfish, which retails for $170, is "the brainchild of acclaimed Cinematographer Robert Brinkmann (The Rules of Attraction, The Cable Guy, The Truth About Cats and Dogs, U2: Rattle and Hum) and Comic Book Artist Dan Panosian (Marvel Comics, Kung Fu Panda, Duke Nukem), who worked together to produce this revolutionary product."

Oh, yeah. They said revolutionary. Who could argue with that?

July 5, 2012 | 3 comments

Did Jackson's Population Actually Grow in 2011?

By Todd Stauffer

Governing Magazine has an interesting tidbit for folks who are partial to Jacktown... according to their estimates, Jackson actually grew in 2011 for the first time... in a long time.

According to Governing, this is part of a larger trend -- the population of urban centers saw a spike in 2011, beating out the national average for growth. Large cities -- and the state of Texas -- saw significant growth.


Jackson didn't fare that well, but considering the population of the city has shrunk every census since 1970, it's interesting to see an actual uptick in population in the 2011 estimates. According to their map, Jackson's population grew by a little over 2,000 people in 2011, or roughly 1.18 percent. Surprised?

(h/t Dominic Deleo)

July 4, 2012 | 2 comments

Have questions for Jackson mayoral candidates?

By Donna Ladd

Today, the JFP launched a series of interviews and other coverage of the 2013 mayoral race in Jackson. (Council coverage is coming soon.) Ongoing mayoral race coverage will appear at jfp.ms/mayorsrace. Right now the link goes to the first interview, with Jonathan Lee, which is linked below as well. But it will change shortly to a special mayoral coverage page with interviews, story links, video, audio and much more that we will collect as the campaign progresses (you can send us stuff, too, and post on your own blog entries).

Now, though, what we want to know is what questions you want our reporters to ask the candidates for mayor? Please make these open-ended (not yes-or-not, or leading "don't you think...?") kinds of questions and serious ones (that don't include unsubstantiated allegations or personal attacks). We will attempt to ask all candidates your questions, and you can also suggest questions for particular candidates. (If you have something you want us to look into that must be factchecked or substantiated, please email it directly to jacob@jacksonfreepress.com). We are also checking factual statements that the candidates make and will include any corrections; we ask you to let us know if we miss anything.

We encourage a higher level of dialogue in this election than we usually see in Jackson elections, and will use the JFP site and paper, as well as public forums, to do what we can to make that happen. We need your help, though, so please let us know your serious thoughts (and disclose if you are connected to a campaign, or who you know who is). All of this is vital information for voters.

So let's get started. Following is a question we just got on Twitter for Jonathan Lee, which inspired me to do this blog post now. We will ask Mr. Lee to answer this question and add it to the bottom of his JFP interview. Note that the question was asked in an accusatory yes-or-no fashion that adds nothing to the dialogue. I will post it in its original form and then change it into a real interview question as an example of how we can all work together to do this well:

Why no question about J Lee's position on sales tax bill for infrastructure improvements?

Better question: Please ask Mr. Lee his position onthe sales tax bill for infrastructure improvements.

Oh, and we also welcome any of the candidates to come on the site and answer themselves!

Let the campaign, and respectful dialogue, begin.

July 2, 2012 | 2 comments

Abortion protester Roy McMillan: 'Shoes Are Optional'

By Donna Ladd

So, this morning we had a team of a reporter, an intern and photographer out at Mississippi's only abortion clinic. It's the morning after federal Judge Dan Jordan issued an injunction keeping the clinic open until at least July 11 because, in part, the folks who pushed it made it clear that their goal was to eliminate abortion in Mississippi -- which they focused on far more than on women's health and safety.

What was funny this morning, to us, is how Roy McMillan (the man who sits in front of the clinic every morning with big fetus posters and other signs) yelled at my folks to tell me that "shoes are optional!" along with various other criticisms of the JFP's coverage. He was clearly referring to this recent JFP editorial, which I wrote a few weeks ago criticizing McMillan and his wife, Dr. Beverly McMillan, for trying to make any form of hormonal birth control, including the pill and the morning-after pill, illegal.

I ended the editorial: "Dr. McMillan is as welcome to those views as her husband is to sit in front of a clinic when he could be out helping children that are already born, hungry and unwanted. But it is not her place to tell hard-working American women that their health insurance should not pay for their health-care needs because she'd prefer that they get pregnant. Whether Dr. McMillan also prefers them barefoot is still an open question."

It's good to know where they stand on that question.

What was funny is that I drove by not long afterward, not knowing about McMillan's messages for me, and snapped some photos from my iPhone. An anti-abortion couple sitting next to the gate told me that they appreciate the JFP's coverage of the controversy because we report all sides and include comments from everyone. So, I suppose, the anti-abortion movement isn't filled with people who all think alike, just like the pro-abortion rights movement isn't. And I rather suspect there are a good number of folks out there against abortion who know that easy access to birth control will actually lower the number of abortions in our state and America. Unlike the McMillins, who don't seem to care about that point.

Meantime, I encourage everyone to read former JFP assistant editor Casey Parks' indepth feature on the Pro-life movement in Mississippi. It includes very interesting reading about the McMillans (they liked this story then, they told us) and other people inside the movement, including lobbyist Terri Herring.


July 1, 2012

Share your craft beer sightings and tastings!

By Donna Ladd

Beer lovers: Our readers need your help! As you find and taste new craft beers previously unavailable in Mississippi, please take a minute and post them here (or tweet with hashtag #beermonth and we'll add them!).

Meantime, see the JFP's special Beer Month archive here, including a JFP v. RYP taste.

Cheers! (And drive safely, or don't drive!).