Jackson, Mississippi Things To Do

From its Civil War legacy to its modern cultural renaissance, the Capital City of Jackson, Mississippi is a City with Soul. Jackson will captivate your spirit of adventure with fascinating museums, historic landmarks, wonderful restaurants, heritage festivals, unique attractions, and sports and entertainment venues. Explore nature at the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science. Meet exotic animals at the Jackson Zoo. Celebrate the Civil Rights Movement at the Medgar Evers home. Hear the cheers of the crowd at the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame. Experience the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra. Discover the history of the Magnolia State at the Old State Capitol and Eudora Welty House. Stir your soul with the rhythms of blues and jazz at an authentic "juke joint." Feel the energy of the Mississippi Blues Trail and learn about the Farish Street sound and the artists who started in Jackson. With many exciting attractions and things to do, Jackson will free your spirit with its charming Southern culture, progressive spirit and hip urban vibe!

Mississippi Blues Blues Music in Jackson

There is a reason that Jackson, Mississippi is called the "City with Soul." Music-most notably the very Southern sound of the blues-figures prominently everywhere you go, from recording studios like Malaco Records to the Alamo Theater where local legends got their start to historic Farish Street, a happening entertainment district featuring restaurants and clubs that showcase the famous "Farish Street Sound." But wait, there's more. Clubs play the blues every night; the Mississippi Blues Trail features several spots to see right here in Jackson, and the crowds gather to hear more than 40 bands performing in the JubileeJAM in June. The best of the Mississippi Blues scene is something to experience year-round.

Jackson Hotel near Mississippi Blues Clubs

The Hilton Garden Inn Jackson Downtown provides the perfect starting point to discover the Mississippi blues and more. The historic landmark, formerly the King Edward Hotel is an ideal location steps from such top city attractions as the Jackson County Fairgrounds, host venue of the Blues Music Festival along with other major events year-round. After taking in the arts and music scene, guests can rest well in their warm and inviting rooms, before heading out the next day to explore the rest of their exciting Jackson itinerary.

Mississippi Blues Sites and Sounds

When it comes to seeing emerging and established blues performers, Jackson offers the real deal, with talented performer taking to the stage of different music venues around town. James Booker, Dr. John, Lightin' Hopkins, Sam Edwards, King Edward, Big Bad Smitty, Willie Clayton and Pat Brown have all played in Jackson over the years. Today, the blues tradition continues at Underground 119, with notable artists such as blues guitarist and vocalist Jesse Robinson and the entertaining duo Baby Jan and Chalmers, to name a few. At the beginning of the week, Hal and Mals is the place to be with its popular "Blues Monday" in the Red Room. Not too far away, F Jones Corner is another blues hot spot, serving ‘cold beer, live music and good food.'

Jackson, Mississippi Zoo

Jackson Zoo.

Enjoy nature and family adventure at the Jackson Zoo. Located on 110 beautiful acres, the Jackson Zoo is habitat for 776 exotic animals and endangered species. See a Sumatran Tiger, African Elephant, Amur Leopard, Malayan Tapir, Red Fronted Lemur, Emperor Tamarin, Brown-Headed Spider Monkey, Lion Tailed Macaque, Chimpanzee and Orangutan. Check out the new Tiger Exhibit and Wilderness Mississippi. Explore the Zoo on the historic train or ride the hand-carved wood carousel with animals and paintings depicting the Magnolia State. Named a "Southern Travel Treasure" by AAA Magazine, the Jackson Zoo is a wild experience. Visit www.jacksonzoo.org.

Mississippi Art Museum.

Located in Jackson downtown, the newly-renovated Mississippi Museum of Art is Jackson's most relevant cultural destination for over 100 years. The museum's brilliant architecture and inviting spaces present contemporary and modern art. The Museum offers a permanent collection of American art, including paintings, photography, prints, sculpture and works on paper by celebrated artists such as Andy Warhol and Georgia O'Keeffe. The Mississippi Story illuminates the history of visual arts in the Magnolia State. The Museum also houses Native American art and baskets. The vortex of jackson downtown's cultural rebirth, the museum presents exhibitions and art and music events. Art Remix is a festive after-hours event in offering a mix of art, music, and food. Stop by Palette Café for modern Southern cuisine and sit on the patio in the downtown district. Visit www.msmuseumart.org.

Jackson Convention Complex.

The rebirth of Jackson downtown, the new Jackson Convention Complex is a beautiful, state-of-the-art event venue that hosts consumer expos, trade shows, regional and national conventions, concerts, sports tournaments, comedy shows, and meetings. Boasting 330,000 square feet of space, including an 85,000 sq. ft. exhibition hall, expansive meeting and conference space, and several magnificent ballrooms, Jackson Convention Complex is "where Mississippi meets the world." The complex features advanced audio-visual capabilities, two concession areas, CAT 5 wiring, catering and event planning – from event staffing to decorations. For events at the Jackson Convention Complex, visit www.jacksonconventioncomplex.com.
Jackson, Mississippi Museum of Natural Science

Mississippi Museum of Natural Science.

Journey through the natural heritage and habitats of Mississippi at the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science. Get inspired through indoor and outdoor exhibits that reveal Mississippi's biological diversity. Tucked within historic LeFleur's Bluff State Park, the museum celebrates Mississippi's natural landscape and wildlife through permanent and traveling exhibits and scientific collections displaying the state's diverse habitats. Visit the 100,000-gallon aquarium housing 200 species, and a greenhouse called "The Swamp." Touch live marine creatures in the saltwater touch tank. Explore 2.5 miles of nature trails and an outdoor maze through the 300-acre natural landscape. Enjoy events at the open-air amphitheater and auditorium, and stop by the gift shop. The museum's collections consist of over 870,000 specimens, representing the largest reference for Mississippi vertebrate animals and freshwater mussels. Visit www.msnaturalscience.org.

Russell C. Davis Planetarium.

Located in Jackson's Downtown Cultural Arts District, the Russell C. Davis Planetarium is a magnificent hemispheric theater where you can experience the universe.
Immerse yourself in breathtaking sky and space scenes, colorful laser shows, thrilling large-format films and astronaut photos. Marvel at the brilliance of the starry night sky and discover the mysteries of stars and planets at the McNair Space Theater's Sky Shows. Enjoy Laser Light Concerts with vibrant imagery and surging beams of light and color punctuated by the music of rock groups like Pink Floyd. Visit www.jacksonms.gov/visitors/planetarium/films.

Mississippi State Capitol.

Located in Jackson, the Mississippi State Capitol has housed the Mississippi Legislature since 1903. Called the New Capitol, the impressive building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and designated a Mississippi Landmark in 1986. Designed in the Beaux-Arts architectural style, the capitol building is constructed of granite and limestone, with white and black marble rotunda. A copper and gold eagle soars above the dome, which has 750 lights that illuminate the blindfolded figure of "Blind Justice." The Mississippi Capital Building houses the Legislative chambers, Hall of Governors, State Library, Supreme Court, and the Governor's offices. The grounds feature a replica of the original Liberty Bell, a statue in memory of Confederate soldiers, the figurehead from the second USS Mississippi battleship, and the magnolia tree.
Jackson, Mississippi Old Capitol Museum

Old Capitol Museum.

Formerly the Old Mississippi State Capitol, the Old Capitol Museum is a Mississippi State Historic Site and National Historic Landmark. The Mississippi statehouse until 1903, the Old Capitol was restored to its grandeur and is now a museum on the history of the building and the events that shaped Mississippi. Multimedia exhibits explore the actions of the legislature, governor, and high court, as well as the importance of historic preservation and state's different capital cities. This historic building was site of the state's most significant legislative actions - passage of the 1839 Married Women's Property Act, Mississippi's secession from the Union in 1861, and the 1868 and 1890 state constitutions. Built in 1839 and one of the country's beautiful examples of Greek Revival architecture, the Old Capitol has a massive limestone exterior, copper dome, and grand interiors that make it the most distinguished building in Mississippi. For tours, visit http://mdah.state.ms.us/oldcap/.

Eudora Welty House.

A National Historic Landmark and one of the nation's finest literary house museums, Eudora Welty House reflects Welty's life there for 76 years. The house features thousands of books, furniture and art donated by the esteemed author. Walk through the historic residence and see just as Welty lived in it. Explore her magnificent garden, which features a beautiful perennial border and rose garden, trellises and latticework, a woodland garden, and a camellia collection, which is a stop on the Gulf Coast Camellia Trail. A future visitor's center will provide space for special exhibits. Schedule a tour at 601-353-7762 or email weltytours@mdah.state.ms.us.

Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame.

Named among the Top 10 "Most Amazing Baseball Museums in America" by ESPN, Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame features interactive exhibits that highlight Mississippi's famous sports moments, athletes and memorabilia. Check out the Singular Wireless Broadcast Experience and broadcast Mississippi's famous sports moments. Visit the Dizzy Dean Museum and see a collection of Dizzy Dean memorabilia, including Diz' 1934 World Series and Hall of Fame rings and timeless photographs, that makes the Gashouse Gang come alive. Follow the history of Mississippi's only PGA golf tournament, the Viking Classic. Be an athlete in the Participatory Room, featuring interactive exhibits that let you swing a golf club, hit a baseball and kick a soccer ball. Admission is $3. Visit www.msfame.com.
Jackson, Mississippi Farmers Market

Mississippi Farmers Market.

Located near the Fairgrounds, the new Mississippi Farmers Market offers farm-fresh produce raised by Mississippi farmers. From butter beans to watermelon, the Mississippi Farmers Market is the place to find the freshest fruits and vegetables grown in the rich soil of the Magnolia State. The market's 32 stalls bring growers and farmers together to share the bounty of Mississippi and the tradition of fresh market produce from the fields to the folks of Jackson. The Market features Mississippi craftsmen and artisans, cooking demonstrations from culinary schools and chefs, live entertainment, children activities, and seasonal events. Enjoy fresh Southern cuisine at the Farmers Market Grille. The Market is open Thursdays and Saturdays from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm. Visit www.msfarmersmarket.com.

Mississippi Agriculture & Forestry Museum.

Step back in time and discover Mississippi's rich agricultural legacy at the Mississippi Agriculture & Forestry Museum. Walk across a rustic bridge in a busy area of Jackson to a museum that reveals how agriculture and forestry molded the history and heritage of the Magnolia State. Explore the Ag Museum's Heritage Exhibit Center, National Agricultural Aviation Museum, Fitzgerald Collection, Small Town, Mississippi, Fortenberry-Parkman Farmstead, Ethnic Heritage Center, and the Forestry Auditorium, and experience the charm and culture of rural life. The museum also presents events, entertainment and festivals like the annual CelticFest. Visit www.msagmuseum.org

Governor's Mansion.

A magnificent antebellum home in Jackson, the Mississippi Governor's Mansion is the second oldest continuously occupied governor's residence in the country. Designated a National Historic Landmark and a Mississippi Landmark, the Mississippi Governor's Mansion was first occupied in 1842 by Governor Tilghman Tucker. During the Civil War, when Jackson was occupied by Union troops, the Mansion was occupied by the provisional military governor and housed wounded soldiers. One of the finest examples of Greek Revival architecture, and one of the most historic antebellum structures in the South, the Mississippi Governor's Mansion features a semi-circular portico supported by ornate Corinthian columns. Magnificent Greek Revival-style elements adorn the Mansion's State Dining Room, Gold Parlor and Green Bedroom. The Mississippi Governor's Mansion is open daily for free guided tours.
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