Friday, October 29
Halloween Weekend 2021 Event Roundup
This list of options the Jackson Free Press has assembled should provide you with a myriad of choices to let you celebrate Halloween according to your interests. Please browse the events below to see what is right for you as we bring October to a close.
Mississippi Pre-Ordering 50,000 Doses of Vaccine for Kids
The state of Mississippi has pre-ordered almost 50,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine in anticipation of the shots being approved for 5 to 11-year-olds early next week, State Epidemiologist Dr. Paul Byers said Thursday.
Mississippi: 14K Pandemic Food Cards Mistakenly Deactivated
More than 14,000 low-income children in Mississippi had their pandemic food cards mistakenly deactivated, prompting an apology from state officials and a promise that new cards would be mailed to their families within days.
Who Killed Angela Parker? Jackson Man Condemned To Life In Prison In 1998 Claims Innocence
The evidence showed that the homicide detectives interviewed Blue Chip Lounge owner John Ware, and he provided them the surveillance video recording that apparently placed Ronnie Johnson at the club at the time of Angela Parker's murder.
Thursday, October 28
Mayor’s State of the City Speech Tackles Crime, ‘Dignity Economy’
“We've come through a lot together this past term,” Mayor Lumumba began. “We faced a 30-year flood, tornadoes, freezing temperatures that exposed existing vulnerabilities in our infrastructure, and a global pandemic that has fostered a historic rise in violent crime. We came through all of this together.”
Republican Attorneys General Criticize Biden Vaccine Order
Twenty-one Republican state attorneys general sent a letter to President Joe Biden on Wednesday saying they think his COVID-19 vaccination mandate for federal contractors “stands on shaky legal ground," is confusing to contractors and could exacerbate supply-chain problems.
Favre Repays $600K in Mississippi Welfare Case, Auditor Says
Favre is not facing criminal charges, but former Mississippi Department of Human Services director John Davis and other people have been charged in one of the state’s largest embezzlement cases.
USM Set to Join the Sun Belt Conference
The University of Southern Mississippi announced on Tuesday, Oct. 26, that the school’s athletic programs would be leaving Conference USA. The Golden Eagles will be joining the Sun Belt Conference no later than 2023.
Wednesday, October 27
Mississippi School Honors Namesake, Respected Black Educator Rosa Scott
Descendants of Rosa Scott, a woman who was a leader in ensuring Black children received education when the state was deeply segregated, gathered on campus Monday at Rosa Scott High School, a campus for about 400 ninth graders in the Madison County School District.
No COVID Vaccine Mandate at Mississippi University for Women
Mississippi University for Women will not require employees to get vaccinated against COVID-19 because the university is not at risk of losing federal money without a vaccine mandate, the school's leader says. “At present, we do not have any federal contracts that would force us to abide by that executive order,” MUW President Nora Miller told WCBI-TV.
‘Keeping the Peace’: Eight Candidates Run for Hinds County District 5 Constable
Candidates running for the Hinds County District 5 Constable position at the Nov. 2 special election attended two recent, separate forums to jostle for votes. Bennie C. Buckner resigned from the post in August, and the Hinds County Board of Supervisors appointed Demario E. Benson in the interim on Aug. 16. The district includes portions of west Jackson, Old Byram, Chapel Hill, Terry and Utica.
Tuesday, October 26
IHL Mandates COVID-19 Vaccines For Mississippi University Employees, Still Prohibits Student Mandates
Under President Joe Biden’s order, university employees at campuses with federal contracts must show proof that they are fully vaccinated or receive an exemption accommodation by Dec. 8. To be compliant by that deadline, university faculty must receive either a first Moderna shot by at Oct. 27; a first Pfizer dose by Nov. 3; or the less effective, more difficult to obtain one-shot Johnson and Johnson vaccine by Nov. 24.
COVID-19 Fatalities Pass 10,000, Over 500,000 Cases
“Ten thousand deaths is staggering,” State Epidemiologist Dr. Paul Byers said. “It just didn't have to happen like this. If we had more people who would get the vaccine, certainly we could have avoided some additional transmission and deaths. Our peak and our transmission of activity during the Delta surge was massive.”
"The Digital Tele-Health Hub project arose because health disparity is such a critical issue in Jackson, especially after all that has happened during the pandemic," Dr. Girmay Berhie says. "I realized the need to build trust while ensuring privacy within the African American community, and I believe telehealth is the key to addressing those needs."
Monday, October 25
CAPE Publications, Meals That Heal and The Village at Livingston
Husband and wife Yasmin Gabriel and Eric Collins opened Meals That Heal together with their friend Detrice Roberts and chose Aug. 29 as the opening day because it coincides with the Haitian Revolution, a successful insurrection by self-liberated slaves against French colonial rule in what is now Haiti.
Harris, Hicks for Hinds County Court Judge Election
After Melvin Priester, Sr. resigned on June 3, 2020, as Subdistrict 1 Hinds County Court Judge, the Mississippi Supreme Court appointed Carlyn Hicks in his place. In the election to fill the position scheduled for Nov. 2, Attorney Greta Mack Harris joins Hicks on the ballot.
Analysis: Judges Can't Order Attorney General to Take Cases
In a unanimous ruling Tuesday, Mississippi Supreme Court justices said a circuit court “acted outside its authority” this year when it ordered Attorney General Lynn Fitch's office to investigate a death after a district attorney recused herself.
Mississippi Legislators Revising Medical Marijuana Proposal
Mississippi lawmakers are tweaking a proposal to create a medical marijuana program, but Republican Gov. Tate Reeves has not said when he will call a special session to put it into law. A new version of a bill would allow larger growing facilities, restructure the excise tax on medical marijuana products and limit the state Agriculture Department’s regulatory role.
Friday, October 22
They Said Emmett Till’s Name to Me. Now, I Say it for Myself.
"As the Smithsonian reminds us, the past will never really be past if we don’t drag it into the light of day."
JSU Hosting Sheriff Debate, MSU Race in America Series and USM Cybersecurity Event
Jackson State University's Department of Political Science will host a debate between Hinds County Sheriff candidates running to fill the position of the late Lee D. Vance on Tuesday, Oct. 26, at 6 p.m.
Mississippi Sets Date for State's First Execution Since 2012
The Mississippi Supreme on Thursday set a Nov. 17 execution date for an inmate who withdrew his appeals and once filed court papers calling himself "worthy of death.”
Thursday, October 21
FDA Authorizes ‘Mix-And-Match’ COVID-19 Boosters, Pfizer Touts 95% Efficacy
Getting a COVID-19 booster shot could soon become much simpler for those who received Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccines, thanks to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s clearance given on Wednesday.
Mississippi State University guard Iverson Molinar was voted to the Preseason First-Team All-SEC. The junior was the only player from either MSU or the University of Mississippi to be named to either the first team or second team.
Longtime Mississippi Public Health Officer Dr. Alton Cobb Dies at 92
Dr. Alton Cobb, a former Mississippi state health officer who helped create some of the nation's most comprehensive vaccination requirements for children, died Friday. He was 92.
Lawsuits: Mississippi Capital City's Water Harms Children
Two new lawsuits claim hundreds of children have been exposed to dangerous lead levels through the drinking water in Mississippi's capital city, which has been facing water system problems for years.
Wednesday, October 20
Archie v. Hinds County Board of Supervisors: Mississippi Supreme Court Appoints Dickinson to Case
The Hinds County Board of Supervisors voted to remove District 2 Supervisor David Archie as vice president on Sept. 29.
Green Hydrogen Hub in Mississippi to be Largest in US
A Jackson-based company has announced plans to build a green hydrogen hub in Mississippi it says will be the largest of its kind in the U.S. and create an easier pathway for hard-to-decarbonize manufacturing industries to move away from fossil fuels.
One Jail’s Tale: Hinds County Detention Center At Risk of Federal Takeover
The Hinds County Detention Center in Raymond, Miss., suffered from structural defects from its opening on Monday, Nov. 14, 1994.
Chef Newsome’s Cookoff-Winning Fall Chili
Rashanna Newsome, sous chef at The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen, has shared the fall chili recipe she used to win the Pro-Bowl Chili Cookoff, a fundraiser that Pelican Cove hosted to benefit the Magnolia Speech School.
Tuesday, October 19
Dobbs Urges COVID-19 Vaccination As Flu Season Approaches
State health leadership urged more Mississippians to get vaccinated before flu season hits during an Oct. 15 press briefing with the Mississippi State Medical Association, as fatalities from COVID-19 continue even as case reports decline.
Report: Jackson Dumped 6B Gallons of Partly Treated Sewage
Mississippi’s capital city dumped more than 6 billion gallons (22.7 billion liters) of partly treated sewage into a river in 2020, seven years after signing a federal court agreement to clean up its act, court records show.
Auditor Demands Brett Favre Return $828,000 in ‘Illegally Spent Welfare Funds’
NFL star Brett Favre must return $828,000 he received from welfare funds that should have gone to needy families, Mississippi State Auditor Shad White said in a statement recently.
Monday, October 18
Seals, Caston, Mayfield Run for Hinds County Sheriff
Hinds County District 4 Constable Leon Seals, Jackson Police Department Officer Brandon Caston, and former Town of Edwards Police Chief Torrance Mayfield are running for Hinds County sheriff at the special election on Nov. 2.
Mississippi Boychoir Be the Light Fun Run, Broadway in Jackson and Mississippi Nonprofit Grants
Mississippi Boychoir will host its annual Be the Light 5K-10K Fun Run on Saturday, Nov. 6, at the Flowood Nature Trail. Registration packets will be available at 7 a.m., and the race will begin at 8 a.m.
Colin Powell, the barrier-breaking soldier and diplomat who served Democratic and Republican presidents in war and peace but whose sterling reputation was stained by his faulty claims to justify the U.S. war in Iraq, died Monday of COVID-19 complications. He was 84.
Analysis: Ex-Lawmaker Argues for Mississippi Abortion Limits
Mississippi Agriculture Commissioner Andy Gipson is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold abortion restrictions that he helped put into state law.
Mississippi Chief Justice Extends COVID-19 Order for Courts
The head of the Mississippi Supreme Court is extending a emergency order that allows judges to postpone jury trials to try to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Friday, October 15
Moderna Booster Moves Closer To Approval
Some Mississippians who received Moderna’s vaccine may soon qualify for a booster shot, after a Food and Drug Administration advisory committee unanimously voted in favor of the third shot yesterday.
Project Could Help Needy Mississippi Families Hold Onto Land
A nonprofit law firm announced a new project Thursday to help low-income Mississippi families hold onto inherited land, an effort that advocates say would build wealth and preserve biological diversity by promoting better forest management.
Thursday, October 14
‘Women are the Essential Workers’: Mississippi Senate Labor Committee to Revisit Equal Pay Issue
Mississippi is the only state in the union with no equal pay law, but the Mississippi Senate’s Labor Committee took up the issue once again on Sept. 29, hosting a public meeting where the committee heard from advocates for pay equity.
JSU/WCC Partnership, MSU Trick or Trot Event and USM Outdoor Sculpture Exhibition
Jackson State University is partnering with Washtenaw Community College in Michigan to create a program allowing students to transfer their associate degrees, with benefits such as guaranteed admission and access to in-state tuition.
Former head coach Nikki McCray-Penson stepped down as the Bulldogs’ head coach to focus on her health in hopes of returning to coaching one day. The move was announced on Tuesday, Oct. 12, and was effective immediately.
Mississippi Works to Offer Driver's License in Digital Form
Mississippi is developing a way for people to have their driver's license, vaccination card and other state-issued documents available in a smartphone wallet, Commissioner of Public Safety Sean Tindell said Tuesday.
Wednesday, October 13
Mayor Shares Personal Story, Proclaims October Domestic Violence Awareness Month
Mayor Chokwe A. Lumumba shared a personal story of domestic violence at a press briefing on Monday, Oct. 11, as he proclaimed October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month in the city of Jackson.
What Makes a Man: Alfred Nicols Rethinks a Southern Man’s Duty in ‘Lost Love’s Return’
In Mississippi author Alfred Nicols’s “Lost Love’s Return,” the return is all the sweeter for the loss, as Nicols spins a tale of World War I sweethearts separated by illness, scheming lovers and the Atlantic Ocean.
Mississippi Auditor Demands Payments in Human Services Fraud
The Mississippi auditor said Tuesday that he is demanding repayment of $77 million in misspent welfare money in one of the poorest states in the nation. This includes $828,000 the auditor is seeking from retired NFL player Brett Favre and an employee of his business, Favre Enterprises.
Reeves: Work Still Happening on Medical Marijuana Proposal
Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves said Tuesday that he and legislative leaders are continuing to negotiate changes in a proposal to create a medical marijuana program, including putting tight limits on how much of the medicine one person could buy.
Tuesday, October 12
Mississippi University for Women named Columbus native and Jackson State University alum Mea Ashley as its new director of Student Life on Sept. 1, 2021.
COVID Misinformation Still a Challenge as COVID-19 Wanes, Deaths Still High
COVID-19 is on the decline in Mississippi, as the state’s fourth wave of the virus steadies into an average rate of less-than-800 new cases per day for the past seven days.
Thousands Protest Vaccine Mandates at Mississippi Rallies
Thousands recently rallied against COVID-19 vaccine mandates at protests held on Mississippi’s coast and in its capital.
Monday, October 11
West, Thompson Running for Hinds County Sheriff
In the field of 13 people who are running in the special election for Hinds County sheriff on Nov. 2 are Ather West and Reginald Thompson, both former Hinds County deputies who served under former Hinds County Sheriff Malcolm McMillin.
Jurassic Quest, Bean Path Sprouting Season and Pumpkin Adventure at the Ag Museum
The Jackson Convention Complex will host a dinosaur-themed edutainment event called Jurassic Quest from Friday, Oct. 22, through Sunday, Oct. 24.
Grants Will Help Students Who Left School in Finishing Their Degrees
Mississippi students who left college at least two years ago without a degree can apply for a grant to help them return to—and finish—school.
Mississippi Book Festival Goes Online Amid COVID Concerns
The Mississippi Book Festival is being shown online after the in-person event was canceled because of concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.
Analysis: Race Theory Report Aims to Sway Policymakers
Republican candidates in Mississippi and across the U.S. have been raising money for months by promising to ban teaching of critical race theory.
Friday, October 8
Black Vision Fund: Deploying Capital To Black Business Will Reduce Wealth Gap
Mississippi Black Pages, a statewide platform for Black entrepreneurs to connect for exposure and development, organized an event at The Synergy Link as part of their monthly series tagged “Network your Net Worth Professional Mixer.”
JSU Opendorse Partnership, MSU 4to24 App and Complete 2 Compete Tuition Assistance Grant
The Jackson State University Division of Athletics has partnered with sports technology company Opendorse to provide JSU student-athletes with education and resource opportunities to capitalize on their name, image and likeness, otherwise known as NIL.
Thursday, October 7
Redshirt sophomore wide receiver Makai Polk enjoyed his best day as a college player. He made big catch after big catch when Rogers needed to keep the Bulldogs moving down the field. Polk caught 13 passes, which is fourth-best in school history. Kylin Hill and Eric Moulds caught 15 passes in a game and David Smith once caught 14 passes in a game.
Mississippi State Fair Opens
“We have spent many hours this year preparing for a unique State Fair,” Mississippi State Fair Director Michael Lasseter said. “This year we introduce our new Frontier Village, which will showcase an old-time fair feel.” The Village will feature a wild-west show, a petting zoo and a train ride, as well as an “Ag Expo” where attendees can learn about agriculture.
Mississippi ToyCon 2021
Classic toy vendors from across Mississippi and beyond gathered for the second annual Mississippi Toycon, which took place on Saturday, Oct. 2, at the Pearl Community Center.
Mississippi Appeals Order Requiring Mental Health Plan
Mississippi on Wednesday followed through on its promise to appeal a federal judge’s ruling that it come up with a plan to prevent unnecessary institutionalization of people with mental illness.
Wednesday, October 6
Bridge the Wage Gap: Domestic Violence Hurts Survivors’ Economic Security
Domestic and dating violence, or intimate partner violence, referred to as IPV, is a common reality that has short- and long-term negative effects on survivors’ economic security and independence.
Twenty-One People Admitted to Hinds County Reentry Program
On Oct. 12, the recently launched Hinds County Reentry Program will see 21 applicants start a two-month course, called “Thinking for a Change."
Free Entry to Museums Marks Civil Rights Icon Hamer's Legacy
Entry to two Mississippi history museums is free Wednesday to mark the birthday of the late civil rights icon Fannie Lou Hamer, known for saying she was “sick and tired of being sick and tired.”
Tuesday, October 5
State Health Leadership Urges Caution As 1.5 Million Vaccinated With One Dose
COVID-19 infections continue to decline across Mississippi, with hospitalizations and deaths dropping from August highs.
Sam Burns was in the mix down the stretch at the Sanderson Farms Championship along with a half-dozen players who were searching for their first PGA Tour title.
Dispute Over Mississippi House Race Goes to State High Court
The Mississippi Supreme Court acted quickly Monday to block a circuit judge's order in a dispute over whether a special election is needed to fill a vacancy in the state House of Representatives.
Families of Low-Income School Children to Receive Meal Money
Families of Mississippi children who qualify for free or reduced-price meals at school will receive deposits later this fall that can be used to buy fruit, meat and other foods.
Monday, October 4
Dogmud Tavern Expansion, Extra Table Everyone Eats Program and Magnolia Speech School
Dogmud Tavern, a Ridgeland-based gaming bar and restaurant connected to local game developer Certifiable Studios that opened on April 1, 2021, announced on Friday, Oct. 1, that it will be expanding its facilities in honor of the tavern's six-month anniversary.
Crisler, Wall and Jones Running for Hinds County Sheriff
Interim Hinds County Sheriff Marshand Crisler, former Chief Deputy of Operations Eric Wall and former Hinds County Sheriff's Office Information Officer Tyree Jones are running to become the new Hinds County sheriff come Nov. 2.
Analysis: Equal Pay Efforts Reviving in Mississippi in 2022
Mississippi is the only state without a law requiring equal pay for equal work by women and men, after Alabama enacted one in 2019.
Pediatrician: Keep Mask Mandates in Mississippi Schools
The leader of a Mississippi pediatricians' organization is urging school districts to keep mask mandates in place to slow the spread of COVID-19.
New Club Aims to Promote Cycling for Black Mississippians
Soul City Cycling officially launched earlier this year and now has 38 members, with several weekly rides around Jackson. They aim to bring more people into the sport and increase visibility for Black Mississippians in cycling.
Friday, October 1
Hinds County Supervisor David Archie Arrested, Charged With Misdemeanors
After a 3-2 vote ousted Hinds County Supervisor David Archie from his role as vice president on Wednesday, Archie found himself under arrest after a Thursday board meeting dispute between supervisors.
Scholarship Luncheon and Endowed Scholarship at JSU, MSU Reveille 25 Awards Program
Jackson State University's 2021 Mary E. Peoples Scholarship Luncheon will take place on Friday, Oct. 11, at 11 a.m. in the Jackson Convention Complex. The university plans to raise $150,000 for high-achieving students who are in financial need.
Mississippi Official: Seniors Are Priority for Booster Shots
Mississippi health officials say booster shots for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine are now available at all county health department clinics, and people over the age of 65 are a priority for the extra jab.