Sunday, February 22, 2009

Bay St. Louis Lives

I left work about 11 last Friday and Hubby and I decided to search for a good burger in one of your favorite cities, Bay St. Louis, Ms. Last month we found one at the Buttercup Cafe near the gulf.

Click on images for full-sized versions

This time around we wanted to try a restaurant suggested by a friend who works in BSL called The Mockingbird Cafe.






Located about a block from the Buttercup, the Mockingbird is located in a very old structure that has been restored beautifully inside. The Mockingbird is also home to The Serious Bakery and all of their sandwiches are made with the bread from this bakery. The best bread I've ever eaten. Our sandwiches were very good and when our bellies were full, we decided to make use of the Bay St. Louis map we picked up at the 'Bird and check out some of the shops in the area.

Our next stop was The Shops at Century Hall. Century Hall was originally built by Woodmen of the World . Incredibly restored, this building houses some ecclectic shops such as Seams like yesterday (antiques, furniture, glassware, hand sewn items) Ke International (South American imports,hats, ornaments) Bohemian Sky (vintage/retro recycled apparel, incense oils, etc) and Paper Moon & Eclipse Gallery (cards, gifts and gallery of local artists). What an awesome place! Everyone in the Shops was super friendly and helpful and more than willing to give us the history on items. My favorite part was the gallery.








It was sunny and open and the art - all mixed media - was hilarious. I learned that the owner's daughter had done these pieces.

In Ke International we met a great lady that mentioned that the wooden angels we spotted on the front porch were likenesses of a tree that was carved after Katrina.



The tree that inspired this carving is right near the Bay and our hostess told us that this tree is where seven people and a dog spent Hurricane Katrina and lived to tell of it. According to her, Bay St. Louis experienced a 34 foot wall of water, as the town was pretty damned near the storm's eye. She told us where to find the tree, so after purchasing some pretty earrings and a great photograph, we headed out to find the tree.



We found the tree about three blocks from the shop. An old live oak, that tree still stands facing the gulf





We found it on this street (in case you're ever looking for it)



We still had a few hours of the afternoon left, so we decided to trek back to the Tourism Center in Bay St. Louis to see if it was open. We've been trying to find out the date of the Bridge Fest, so this was a good place to start. NOT.

Located in the Train Depot, the BSL Visitor Center is chock full of info about this sweet little town.



The hostess there was awesome. When we got there she was taking care of a busload of seniors from Meridian, offering them popcorn and coffee, giving them ditty bags full of local info. When she spotted us she asked us if we'd signed the register and then realized that we weren't with the tour bus (which made me feel good, because I didn't think I looked 78 years old). We asked her about Bridge Fest and she offered to find the date and started tearing thru brochures looking for the date. She then offered to look it up online, but was side tracked by another busload of seniors.

Well, we still didn't find out the date of the festival, but we had a good time looking for it.



Outside we decided to see what else was going on, so we strolled on over to the Alice Mosely Museum. Mz Mosely was a folk artist and lived in BSL in a sweet little cottage that's been restored (EVERYTHING's been restored in Bay St. Louis). Although her type of art is not my cup of tea, it was interesting touring her home and observing her art.



Bay St. Louis is undergoing major infrastructure repair due to that 34 foot wall of water, so the streets around the Train Depot are mostly unpaved and very dusty. Walking back to the truck, we noticed a beautiful green area that is slated to become a park



It's gonna be nice.

It was an enjoyable afternoon, far from the madness of Mardi Gras. I think this shot mirrors the people of the Mississippi Gulf Coast



Beat up by Katrina, it lives. Happy to be alive and continuing to grow.

4 comments:

jana said...

My husband and I found the Mockingbird Cafe last summer! What a treat. If you're interested, you can read about our experience here:
http://theragsland.blogspot.com/2008/07/big-family-fun.html

Anonymous said...

we too visited bay st louis, and found the most amazing co-op of artists at 220 main street...incredible art, and great folks willing to tell you about the town.....a must see for sure.

Ruth Thompson said...

The BridgeFest this year will be on Sat., May 16, 2009. This year will be held in Downtown (Old Town) Bay St. Louis and the Depot District. Fest hours are 11:00 a.m. till 8:00 p.m. See you there.

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