Ship Island Gets Thumbs Up, Coast Beaches Get Mixed Reviews

Two busy sections of beach in Harrison County remain closed for the Fourth of July holiday.

The beach at Pratt Street in Gulfport and at Rodenburg Avenue in Biloxi shut down several weeks ago because of contamination in the water.

Even though warning signs are posted nearby, many people ignored the signs and headed into the water. At least four hotels are located near Rodenburg. Several managers say the beach closing, has not affected their business at all.

"You can see that there are people out there having a good time during the Fourth of July," hotel manager Anjly Desai said. "Everybody's here to have fun, and we haven't had anybody complain. We've barely had people ask about it."

The beaches at Rodenburg and Pratt will remain closed, until samples show the water is safe.

The good news is that those closings impact only small portions of the coast's 26 miles of beach. Just offshore, you'll find one of the best beaches in the country according to Conde Nast Traveler Magazine.

The magazine has ranked Ship Island among the top 50 offshore escapes in America. Ship Island is part of the Gulf Islands National Seashore.