George Ohr Festival Back in Full Swing

After a two year hiatus, the George Ohr Fall Festival of Arts is back in full swing.

Donna Rayburn and her 10-year-old grandson, Corbin, spent the afternoon together, browsing the booths at the festival. It was their first time at the event and Corbin's first time to meet a blacksmith.

"He made us nails, showed my son how to make nails, old timey nails. He gave him lots of good instruction, very informative, so I feel like people can walk around all day here and if they just stop for five minutes at each booth, they'll come away with a world of knowledge," Rayburn said.

The blacksmith's stand was just one of many interactive art booths festival-goers had a chance to visit. "We only let in art booths, we don't let in other types of booths,and we have lots of wonderful art projects for children to do free, and contests," said Paula April, the festival's organizer.

This is the first time the festival's been held since Hurricane Katrina.

South Mississippi potter Brian Nettles has had a booth at the festival since it began 16 years ago. "It was over at the library. There were actually three booths, a couple of hot dog stands. That was it," Nettles said.

But the festival has grown over the years, even after a two year hiatus. "I think a real good turn out, since it's after the storm, it's first year since, I think it's a good turn out," Nettles said.

Proceeds from the event will benefit the Ohr-O'Keefe Museum, which was badly damaged during Katrina. "This primarily goes for our operation account, our art projects and our education programs for children in the field of arts," April said.

The museum is slated to open within the next two years.

The festival continues at the Biloxi Town Green Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $2 for adults. Kids 12 and under get in free. Museum members who have their cards also get in free.