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Casey Principal Rhoda Yoder, scholarship recipient Ivy Green and FRF’s Jim Wilkirson. Image: Angie Noble

A Casey Elementary student and Fondren resident is the recipient of the first-ever Fondren Renaissance Arts Scholarship.

On Tuesday, May 18, during Casey’s annual awards day, FRF Executive Director Jim Wilkirson made the presentation to Ivy Green, daughter of Dr. Torrance Green and Mrs. Lakeisha Green.

The rising 5th grader received a one-year paid scholarship to the Fondren School of Music under the direction of Patrick Harkins, a scholarship made possible through the generosity of Ergon. The award can be used for vocal or instrumental lessons.

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We are pleased today to announce the 2016 Cedars Juried Art Show and the call for entries from Mississippi artists (Download the prospectus here).

The 5th annual installment will feature esteemed artist and Mississippi College professor, shop Samuel M. Gore, see serving as juror.

Entries are open to all Mississippi artists, who may submit up to three works for consideration, due by July 31.  The selection for top cash prizes and honorable mentions will be made by Gore.

An opening reception will be held September 1 from 5pm to 8pm at The Cedars.

The Cedars Juried Show is part of the Four Seasons of The Cedars Visual and Performing Arts Series and is free and open to the public. The exhibit hangs through September 23.

neighborhood-newsWelcome to your monthly look at what’s been happening and what’s upcoming in the neighborhood. It is our hope that this email will serve as a jumping off point for you to engage with us if you have questions or wish to help support the work we do on behalf of the neighborhood everyday.

Our Fondren
Fondren’s resident-centric organization, OurFondren Neighborhood Association, invites you to a movie night, this Saturday, May 14 at Fondren Park. They’re showing a classic, Ferris Beuller’s Day Off. They will have pizza, popcorn and drinks. Bring a blanket or chairs. The movie starts at 6:30 p.m.

Next Tuesday, May 17, OFNA holds their quarterly meeting at St. James Episcopal Church’s Fowler Hall. The doors will open at 5:30pm and the meeting will begin at 6:00pm. The topic is Planning and Economic Development in the City of Jackson. Eric Jefferson, Director of Planning & Economic Development, and Senator David Blount will be there.

In lieu of our regular happy hour at our office, we ask you to join OFNA on the night. An FRF representative will be on hand to answer any questions you may have.

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Heid Pitre’s “Hold Up to the Light”

Fondren Renaissance brings a special show to this year’s 2016 Four Seasons of The Cedars Visual and Performing Arts Series that recognizes past achievements.

Opening May 5, “Best of Show” will feature past winners from the past four years’ Cedars Juried Art Exhibitions. Included are Janice Dean, Paul Fayard, Laurilyn Fortner, John Gibson, Tom Joynt, Benny Melton, Heidi Pitre, Jean Seymour, Kim Whitt, Mike Wharton and Bebe Wolfe with special showing by past jurors Jere Allen, Bill Dunlap and Alan Flattmann.

The evening will also kick off the call for submissions for this fall’s 5th annual juried show, coming September 1.

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A brewer rep from Lazy Magnolia in Kiln, this MS talks to festival-goers about the samples they are tasting |Image: Frank Farmer for Fondren Renaissance

Fondren Renaissance Foundation, in cooperation with Capital City Beverage Company and Southern Beverage Company, presents the 2nd annual Mississippi Craft Beer Festival on the grounds of Duling Hall in Fondren on June 24, 2016. (Tickets are on sale here.)

Over 100 beers will be presented for sampling by twenty eight breweries. Special emphasis will be placed on breweries within Mississippi and nearby bordering states with brewer representatives on hand to discuss their products and brewing methods.

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Origin Bank’s Laura Greer and Larry Ratzlaff present a check to Fondren Renaissance’s Jim Wilkirson and St. Dominic’s Bill Scruggs for the Phoenix Initiative. Also accepting the check are St. Dominic’s Deidre Bell, sildenafil Sister Dorothea Sondgeroth and Calude Harbarger.

When Bill Scruggs took on a role in the corporate office of St. Dominic’s Health Services in 2007, information pills then corporate vice-president Barry Plunkett asked him to go for a ride.

“I thought maybe he was going to tell me he was sick,” Scruggs surmised.

As it turns out, Plunkett was handing Scruggs the reigns to the Phoenix Initiative, a façade housing grant program began two years earlier through the generous donation of St. Dominic’s and a partnership with Fondren Renaissance Foundation.

And what a ride it’s been.

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Michelle Obama

55,000 people are expected to attend Jackson State University‘s commencement on Saturday, a ticketed, not “general admission” event. First Lady Michelle Obama will be the featured speaker for the ceremony that begins at 3pm at Veteran’s Memorial Stadium.

As with any visitor of Mrs. Obama’s caliber, major traffic delays will begin on Saturday as early as 9am. (No streets will be affected on Friday).

Jackson Police Department District Commander James McGowan said by phone Lakeland Drive should not be affected but the interstate, from the airport to Woodrow Wilson (on to West Street) will be. Streets immediately surrounding the stadium will be blocked. This, he says, will not affect the streets of the historic Fondren business district. “If you have a business, you should have a captive audience to sell to Saturday as cars will be all over the neighborhood.”

One place they will NOT be allowed to park is Woodrow Wilson. McGowan says, “Vehicles will be towed if left parked along this route.”

It is believed the First Lady will speak shortly after 3pm and leave the stadium around 4pm. Street closures from earlier in the day will once again occur. Expect heavy traffic congestion most of Saturday.

“In this area, no one should expect to get anywhere in any hurry on Saturday, period,” he noted.

A University of Mississippi Medical spokesman says hospital employees are advised to anticipate delays. “We don’t know how bad (delays) will be but we’re planning as best as we can. We are opening extra lots on campus to allow to them to park here instead of at the stadium.”

They also advise calling 911 in an emergency. “Persons experiencing a condition such as a heart attack, a severe laceration or other potentially life-threatening condition or obstetrical emergency on Saturday should not attempt to reach any of the three hospital emergency departments in a private vehicle if at all possible.”

neighborhood-newsWelcome to your monthly look at what’s been happening and what’s upcoming in the neighborhood. It is our hope that this email will serve as a jumping off point for you to engage with us if you have questions or wish to help support the work we do on behalf of the neighborhood everyday.

Monthly Happy Hour   

Stop by our office (Fondren Corner 1st floor across from Mosaic) on Tuesday April 19 from 5pm – 6:30pm for a “happy hour” – OPEN TO ALL MERCHANTS, RESIDENTS and FONDREN ORGANIZATIONS. This is your opportunity to ask questions related to neighborhood projects, zoning, parking, events, safety or other concerns. There is no agenda and all are welcome.

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Work by Williams-Cook and Humphrey

Fondren Renaissance has announced the first installment of this year’s 2016 Four Seasons of The Cedars Visual and Performing Arts Series.

Opened March 3, price “Spring” features painters Kennith Humphrey and Ginger Williams-Cook.

Humphrey, a Vicksburg native, has gained national  and international recognition and in the process realized his dream of being a professional painter. His work depicts African American culture such as jazz  and blues  and agriculture in the Delta. Humphrey and his paintings have acquired nation wide fame as well as interest from Portugal and France. Several of his paintings hang in the American Embasy in Portugal.

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A press conference was held at Spann Elementary recently to announce the Barbara Bush Foundation Teen Trendsetter literacy program. The current program, launched in the fall of 2015, involves ten Jackson public high schools paired with ten Jackson public elementary schools along with one pilot program – the first of its kind in the nation – that combines the private school sector with the public school sector, specifically Jackson Academy with Spann Elementary.

The press conference highlighted National Literacy Month and lauded the success of the overall program with special recognition given to Spann and its mentors, Murrah High School and Jackson Academy.

Its tie to Fondren is a royal one.

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