Ocean Springs businesses prepare for MayFest

By Sylvia Hall - bio | email

OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - Saturday morning the traffic on Government St. will give way to two stages, as May Fest returns for its third year.

"We were going to take a portion of Peter Anderson and add music to it and create a festivity that will be a lot more fun," said organizer Arturo Barajas. "I'm expecting at least 12,000 people or more."

Those 12,000 people will listen to music and browse products from more than 60 local vendors. One of those is a new addition to South Mississippi, Chocolate Honey.

"I live in the area," said Janice Lee who sells the diabetic-friendly chocolate concoction. "I've been trying to introduce this new product to people."

She decided May Fest would be the perfect venue for several reasons. She decided the smaller festival would give her a better chance to explain the product to customers. Her other reason for working the festival is the low price for visitors.

"There was no admission fee," she said. "So I knew more people would come."

It's not just the vendors and bands who will benefit.  Barajas hopes the people who come for the fest will come back to downtown Ocean Springs for the community.

"We need to promote as much as we can, our small business community, our restaurants, our bars, our galleries, our boutiques," Barajas said.

Local businesses like Kwitzky's Dug Out are getting ready for the boom in business.

"It boosts the economy tremendously," said owner Kris Kwitzky. "It is a fantastic event, and we look forward to doing it every year."

When it comes to this festival, many Ocean Springs business owners and vendors said there's something to be gained for everyone there.

"They score, and we score as a group," Kwitzky said.

The festival gets started at 10 a.m. and will go until in the evening.

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