Travel and Leisure Magazine highlights Clarksdale, Greenwood and Oxford – Mississippi Delta’s Small Town Culture

snapshot from Travel & Leisure article about Mississippi Delta

Snapshot of the Travel & Leisure article about Mississippi Delta

By Poor William

CLARKSDALE, MISSISSIPPI – Travel and Leisure’s Feb. 2013 edition features an article centered on three Mississippi towns: Clarksdale, Greenwood and Oxford. “The Mississippi Delta’s Small-Town Culture” initially appeared as “Southern Revival” in T&L Magazine.

The standalone intro speaks much truth: “Searching for authentic American Culture? Find it in the Mississippi Delta, where three small towns embrace and redefine their long-standing traditions.”

Shane Mitchell, special correspondent and self-described daughter of the South, did a bang up job picking up on and articulating with brevity the continuity and distinctions between three major legs on the MS Delta stool: Clarksdale–Blues and live tunes; Greenwood–insane good eats replete with regional faire and cultural dining predicated on food, spirits and hearty conversation; and Oxford, though technically not in the Delta, a college town heavily influenced by generation upon generation of native Deltan sons and daughters who have matriculated at Ole Miss before, during and after Civil Rights upheavals.

For those who love the blues, the birthplace of the blues and the history associated with it, any mention of the Delta should include the name Roger Stolle. And this piece did!

Jeff Kokle, Lou Bopp and Roger Stolle collaborators on We Juke Up In Here

Jeff Kokle, Lou Bopp and Roger Stolle collaborators on numerous Mississippi Delta projects

It is impossible for a writer to include all the cool things about a town in a short piece–someone or some entity will always not get recognition–but Mitchell does an able job getting a feel for Clarksdale’s importance in defining and redefining the Delta.

Please read the article and when in Clarksdale, check out Roger Stolle’s Cat Head Delta Blues and Folk Art, along with our many shops, art galleries, museums, restaurants, B&B’s, outdoor recreational activities like canoeing with John Ruskey and his Quapaw Canoe Company, and of course: Clarksdale’s live music every damn night of the week, even when the winter days are splendidly gray, balmy and conducive to a late afternoon brew pop and some early-to-late evening blues music played by a bevy of insanely talented local musicians who can play just about every damn instrument used to sling some blues.

The photo accompanying the article was taken in downtown Clarksdale at Oxbow Restaurant now Oxbow Market & Catering, and includes John Henshall, a native Aussie Urban planner at Essential Economics and lover of all things Delta and blues-oriented. Henshall has done extensive, economic development pro-bono research for Clarksdale. Also, his love of Clarksdale and the Delta has served as a linchpin for broader and deeper relational connectivity between Australians and Deltans! Henshall has his back to the photographer and his Kiwi girlfriend Bonita and Aussie friend Tim are on the other side of Oxbow’s picnic table.

The Mississippi Delta rocks! Don’t just listen to a fella named Poor William; come to Clarksdale and check out the Feb. issue of Travel and Leisure magazine. Link provided: http://www.travelandleisure.com/articles/the-mississippi-deltas-small-town-culture

Poor William manages the Clark House Residential Inn and the Delta Bohemian Guest House located in Clarksdale and writes for the Delta Bohemian when he ain’ busy thinking great and not-so-great thoughts!


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