Biloxi's baseball parking dilemma will affect other downtown eve - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Biloxi's baseball parking dilemma will affect other downtown events

The Saenger Theatre parking lot will be used as public parking on game day. (Photo source: WLOX) The Saenger Theatre parking lot will be used as public parking on game day. (Photo source: WLOX)
MGM Park will open on June 6th. (Photo source: WLOX) MGM Park will open on June 6th. (Photo source: WLOX)
BILOXI, MS (WLOX) -

As the baseball fans pour into Biloxi Saturday, the excitement will be plentiful, but the parking spaces less so. At Tuesday's Biloxi City Council meeting, a few citizens expressed their concerns over the possible parking dilemma.

The owners of Angie's Dance Center have been renting the Saenger Theatre out for their annual recital for nearly 10 years. But this year, the theatre's parking lot is being used as public parking for the Shucker's first home game at MGM Park.

"We are renting the facility from the city. And in our contract it states that we're responsible for cleaning up the parking lot. So, if we're responsible for cleaning up the parking lot, that kind of would imply that we would have parking available for our customers that's coming in," said Rusty Waites.

Waites, who co-owns the dance studio with his wife, addressed the city council about his concerns. Councilman Robert Deming suggested that recital guests use the city's free shuttle system set up for Saturday. But Waites said that's just not an option.

"They have costumes and they have pieces they have to bring. They have bags. They have a lot of stuff they have to be able to carry, and I just don't... that to me, that's not a viable option for our situation," said Waites.

After spending thousands of dollars, Waites said he is just asking for some type of parking to be reserved right next to the theatre for his patrons coming to the show. Ward Two Councilman Felix Gines hopes they can form an agreement to reserve some parking for the event.

"Our intent is not to hinder any business or any event that's taking place. But, of course, when you have an event such as this, we all have to sacrifice a little bit for the betterment of the whole. This is a great problem to have for the city of Biloxi," said Gines.

Wednesday at 3:30pm, city leaders are expected to meet to discuss the plan for parking, and Waites should learn then whether or not he will get reserved parking for the dance center's recital.

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