Ground Zero Blues Club set to be center of downtown Biloxi’s revitalization effort

The Biloxi Ground Zero Blues Club co-owner Lee Young, right, greets guests to the preview party.
The Biloxi Ground Zero Blues Club co-owner Lee Young, right, greets guests to the preview party.(wlox)
Published: Feb. 10, 2022 at 9:56 PM CST|Updated: Feb. 10, 2022 at 10:25 PM CST
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BILOXI, Miss. (WLOX) - The Ground Zero Blues Club in Biloxi is set to open to the public in one week but a VIP crowd got the first glimpse at the completed club on Thursday.

The club, owned in part by actor and Mississippi native Morgan Freeman, is set to be the center of downtown Biloxi’s revitalization efforts.

Co-owner Lee Young hopes it is sweet.

“I think what I’m looking forward to most is a rebirth of downtown Biloxi,” he said. “I think everybody is looking to this being the nucleus of more things to come.”

The private preview party was to showcase how hard work and support can turn a neglected historic building into a promising economic machine.

“Lee and his brother and his investors saw what could happen here,” said Mayor FoFo Gilich. “They’ve invested in the old Kress building and put multi-millions of dollars in it. But, with the Barq building and the Saenger, it’s just the beginning of a really exciting time for Biloxi.”

And that was a common theme.

“Wow! What a great turnout in a beautiful venue,” said Tina Ross-Seamans, executive director of the Biloxi Bay Area Chamber of Commerce. “I am just so excited for downtown Biloxi. This is what we needed to jumpstart the continuation of the development down here on Howard Avenue.”

The hope is that it will be a cultural draw from around the country.

“By this being a somewhat historical blues district anyway, it is going to bring back some of the things we had once before: the blues trail,” said Biloxi Ward 2 councilman Felix Gines. “And, so this is a welcomed addition and not only that, it’s going to be beneficial for the whole Coast.”

The new club will keep the essence of the Ground Zero Blues Club in Clarksdale with a Biloxi flavor.

“To me, Biloxi has its own unique music history,” Young said. “So, what we’ve tried to do is blend one end of the blues trail with the other and respect Clarksdale absolutely and the history of the blues and also pay some appreciation to Biloxi’s rich history of music. And we hope we’ve made a good combination of that in the creation of this venue.”

The club opens to the public for the first time at 6 p.m. Friday with music by blues artist Lucious Spiller. The grand opening will be Feb. 18. To see a list of events, a full menu, and more, visit Ground Zero’s website.

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