Tourism Talk - June 2016
Over the next 5 months the Hancock County Tourism Bureau will be highlighting our communities and some of the unique activities for visitors and also locals. This month we feature the Kiln community.
Kiln is located just north of Waveland and I-10 and west of the City of Diamondhead. Many kilns — used in the production of pine tar — once dotted the area, which in the late 19th century was a timber industry boomtown. Prior to the early 1910s the area we know as Kiln or “the Kiln” was referred to as the Jourdan River Community, but since at least the 1880s it has been known as Kiln, and by 1913 the name Kiln was firmly established.
The community of Kiln offers a variety of restaurants, bars and shops. The Kiln is known worldwide for being the hometown of Brett Farve. It’s also famous for its old-time horse Christmas parade, and was home to some of the best moonshine during the 1920s prohibition. Below are some of the main attractions in the Kiln.
Stennis International Airport
During World War II the Hancock County Airport (as it was then known) was used as an auxiliary training airfield supporting the Army Pilot Training School at Gulfport Army Airfield. It eventually opened for civil use in May 1970.
The Airport’s Million Air fixed base operator (FBO) offers a full complement of capabilities and amenities including DLA-approved aviation fuel and ground services, Jet-A-Way Café, hospitality bar, theater room, pilot lounges, conference rooms, flight planning room and onsite Hertz Rent-a-Car. Have lunch with friends in the Jet-A-Way Café.
Stennis International Airport is a public use airport in Hancock County. For more information, click here.
Lazy Magnolia Brewery
Lazy Magnolia is Mississippi’s oldest packaging brewery, and the first one since prohibition was enacted in 1907. They’ve been offering locally brewed beer to Mississippians since they were founded in September of 2003.
Lazy Magnolia’s one-hour educational tour with complimentary souvenir pint glass gets a top rating on Trip Advisor. Each paying guest may try up to 6 different brews during the tour with their $10 admission. When accompanied by a paying guest, designated drivers or minors under the age of 21 receive free admission.
Lazy Magnolia has a First Friday event each month that draws visitors from all over the region. Come enjoy music, food and the occasional chance to taste a new beer. For more information on this event or to set up a tour, go to their website.
Lazy Magnolia Brewery: 7030 Roscoe Turner Road. 228-467-2727.
McLeod Park is a campground located on the Jourdan River in Kiln operated and maintained by the Hancock County Board of Supervisors. The park has boating, hiking, and a playground, plus campsites with showers and a store. The park offers pavilion and golf cart rentals.
McLeod Park boast the largest Halloween party in the county. Campers and park visitors enjoy trick-or-treating from campsite to campsite. Patrons decorate their RVs, and park employees create a fun atmosphere for all.
McLeod Park: 8100 Texas Flat Road. (228) 467-1894.
Hancock County Arena
Hancock County Multi-Purpose Arena hosts fairs, rodeos, livestock shows, food and music festivals, barrel racing, team roping, sports motocross, dog shows and more!
The covered outdoor arena sits on 80 acres and has a sound system, seating capacity of approximately 2800, concession areas, restrooms, announcers stand, a lighted outside livestock barn, and camper hookups.
One of the largest events that take place at the arena is the Hancock County Fair. The Fair brings back the history of county fairs and celebrates community heritage with live entertainment, midway games and rides, arts and crafts vendors, a rodeo for all ages, livestock, and offerings from local restaurants along with traditional fair food stands. This year the fair is September 21-24. See www.hancockcountyfair. The Hancock County Arena is located at 4184 Kiln-Delisle Road.
For more information on the arena go to www.hancockcountyms.org.
The Hancock Performing Arts Center
The Hancock Performing Arts Center (HPAC), adjacent to Hancock County Middle School on Stennis Airport Drive, is an extension of the district's educational mission and a result of an effort to provide “meaningful opportunities in drama, music, dance, writing, and film” for area youth and the community.
The Center’s website states a mission of “entertaining and educating the community.... A child’s educational development should include the performing arts to enhance his/her intellectual development. In addition, unique opportunities should be offered for everyone in the community to explore the arts through educational programs throughout the year.”
The $8.2 million center officially had its grand opening on February 20 this year, and this spring featured a staging of “Little Shop of Horrors,” a concert with 1950s rock-n-roller Bobby Rydell, and Hancock County School District music performances.
The facility houses a 500-foot orchestra pit, over 2,000 square feet of lobby area complete with gallery-style hanging system, and a spacious backstage makeup and dressing room. The center also has a catering kitchen fully equipped to accommodate guests. Visit their site or find them under “Hancock Performing Arts Center” on Facebook.
How many of these activities have you tried in your community?
For more information about the county go to www.mswestcoast.org
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