Bay Bridge Fest makes triumphant return

BAY ST. LOUIS, MS (WLOX) - The gorgeous weather coupled with music and art from all over the southeast, made for an excellent day to go out and enjoy the Bay Bridge Festival. This year's Bridge Fest returned with more music, more activities and an extra day.

The event, produced by the Hancock County Chamber of Commerce, kicked off this morning and organizers say this year, the event is bigger and much better than ever before.

The event started as a ceremony to celebrate the restoration of the Bay Bridge five years ago. It has since become an annual downtown festival infused with Louisiana music and a sea of colorful local art.

"We're expecting record crowds throughout the weekend," said Tish Williams with Hancock Chamber of Commerce. "It's not just the music and the art, but it's also the food."

With authentic cuisine from over fifteen restaurants, thirty different bands and vendors throughout the grounds, the event promises to have something for everyone. Event planners say they're hopeful that the festival just brings folks from everywhere together for a good time.

Organizations like "The Seal Foundation" were instrumental in the planning process this year. The group made a conscious effort to make the event this year like nothing Bay St. Louis had ever seen before.

"It's an opportunity for people in New Orleans to come over here who used to have second homes, who maybe haven't rebuilt from Katrina and get back down and say hey we're back," said Lee Seal with the Seal Foundation.

"Lee and I got together and said this would be a perfect opportunity to bring all the flavors of the local music: Southeast Louisiana, Southeast Mississippi, all together under one tent and Bridge Fest was the perfect place to do it," said Mike Rosato, Music Promotions Chair.

The day was definitely a success, but if organizers say if you missed out Saturday, you can still catch the last day of the event Sunday afternoon.

"We want to remind everybody that this is a totally free concert, and you ought to come on and have a great time because this is music that we have not had on the Gulf Coast, probably ever," Rosato said.

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