Where to Eat and Play During Ridgeland’s Art, Wine & Wheels

The Ridgeland Fine Arts Festival is part of the weekend. Image: Visit Ridgeland

Headed to town for Art, Wine and Wheels, April 30 – May 2, in Ridgeland?

The weekend brings the Ridgeland Fine Arts Festival, Sante South Wine Festival and the Natchez Trace Century Ride together – and gives you a chance to visit Jackson, too!

For a look at places to eat and play in the City With Soul, read on!

EAT

BRAVO!
The modern dining room at BRAVO! at Highland Village is a popular gathering spot for a casual evening (or lunch) over platters of delicious Italian food. The open kitchen offers a view of the bustle of the staff as they prepare wood-fired pizzas, steaks and pasta, plus some excellent seafood dishes as well. The wine list has been recognized as one of the finest in the city. Plan a return visit for when they host a wine tasting event!

Estelle Wine Bar & Bistro
Another open kitchen restaurant experience, Estelle at The Westin Jackson, is a modern wine bar and bistro. Imbibe with craft cocktails or sample their wine list – approachable for any wine enthusiast. Estelle prides itself on working with local farmers to create seasonal dishes under Executive Chef Jonathan Boyd’s direction.

Estelle Wine Bar & Bistro

Crazy Cat Eat Up
Crazy Cat Eat Up started as a bakery but has evolved into a full-service restaurant offering lunch throughout the week and dinner on Thursday through Saturday night (and soon to serve brunch)! With elegantly plated inventive dishes that range from salads to sandwiches to seafood, Crazy Cat focuses on seasonal food presented in an unfussy Southern ambiance, like dining in your favorite grandma’s tearoom (providing she was an excellent cook, of course). True to their baking heritage, the desserts at Crazy Cat are insanely delicious. They’re located at Canton Mart Square.

Sal & Mookie’s
Longtime Jackson diners know Sal & Mookie’s as a Fondren staple. But, a reset of the GPS is needed to visit their new home at The District at Eastover. What hasn’t changed is their commitment to a deliciously honed menu featuring pizza, pasta, salads and ice cream. They’re also know for their burgers (try the Bobby Flay) and their wings (ginger molasses is a favorite). A full bar with creative craft cocktails is available and save room for milkshakes or cheesecakes.

Library Lounge
An experience at the intimate lounge at the Fairview Inn does feel like being served a fine cocktail in the clubby library of a family friend. The bookshelf-lined walls of the former Fairview Mansion library are still filled with historic tomes, many written by Mississippi authors. The personal service from the talented bartenders is exemplary, and the Library offers one of the best happy hours in town from 4:00 until 6:00 Monday through Friday. Their Magnolia patio – under the canopy of a massive magnolia tree – is an inviting evening spot.

More food…

PLAY

SWAC Spring Football Championship
The 2021 Cricket Wireless Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) Football Championship will be played in Jackson on May 1 at 2 pm at Veteran’s Memorial Stadium.

The game between Arkansas Pine Bluff and Alabama A & M University will also be broadcast live on ESPN2 and available live and on-demand on the WatchESPN App. 

JXN Public Art 
The public art scene in Jackson is exploding! From some of the latest (Adrienne Dominick’s “Mama Rose Kitchen” on Farish Street to Shon Perryman’s “JXN Icons” across from the Two Museums’ plaza on North Street) to longtime fixtures (literally) like the painted Downtown traffic signal boxes, the landscape is rich in color and creativity.

The JXN public art map showcases murals, sculptures and other interesting artistic finds with concentration areas in Fondren, Midtown and Downtown Jackson.

“JXN Icons” by Reshonda Perryman

Fondren
Visit the spot dubbed “Jackson’s hippest neighborhood™,” a vibrant and colorful art moderne-influenced collection of buildings and period signage. Inside those buildings are boutiques and restaurants, locally-owned and unique to Jackson. While you’re there, step into Brown’s Fine Art & Framing (630 Fondren Place) or Fondren Art Gallery (3242 North State Street) or check out a host of public art pieces that dot the Fondren landscape.

Mississippi Museum of Art
The Mississippi Museum of Art invites you to stroll numerous masterpieces inside the pristine galleries and outside the museum gardens.

On special exhibition is “Piercing the Inner Wall: The Art of Dusti Bongé,” widely considered to be the first Mississippi artist to work consistently in a Modernist style. Also, see “Betye Saar: Call and Response,” showcasing the artist’s embrace of the medium of assemblage, known best for her incisive collages and sculptures that confront and reclaim racist depictions. Tickets are required for both special exhibitions.

Dusti Bongé, Sunflowers and Squash, Oil on canvas, 16 x 20. Collection of the Dusti Bongé Art Foundation

Two Mississippi Museums
Few other places in Jackson have as much potential to teach us as the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum and the Museum of Mississippi History (sharing a common building, both free on Sundays).

At the Civil Rights Museum, this state-of-the-art space features eight distinct galleries guiding visitors from the struggle for freedom through the Jim Crow South and beyond to the present moment.

Deep time and more recent moments combine at the Museum of Mississippi History. Spanning thousands of years, exhibits include Native American artifacts from 13,000 BC and slave shackles and a functioning, automated cotton gin.

The museums are currently hosting a special exhibition titled “Mississippi Distilled,” chronicling prohibition in Mississippi, as well as a Civil Rights photography exhibition, “I Am A Man,” both free with admission.

More play…

To plan more of your trip to Jackson, go to visitjackson.com.

For your safety and the safety of those around you, City of Jackson COVID-19 restrictions require the use of facial coverings indoors and outside when social distancing of six feet or more is not possible. To learn of additional COVID-10 safety measures, visit our Safer Travel page and #VistMSResponsibly.

Presented in partnership with Visit Ridgeland