October 25, 2014  

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Southern Miss Gulf Coast to Entertain with Free Jazz and Blues Festival April 23

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The University of Southern Mississippi’s Jazz and Blues Festival has teamed up with local artist Elizabeth Huffmaster to commission a one-of-a-kind painting representing this year’s festival. Huffmaster, using her signature watercolor technique, created the colorful jazz and blues theme featuring various musical instruments. T-shirts featuring Huffmaster’s painting will be available for purchase at the festival.

The Rochelle Harper Band, Southern Miss Faculty Jazz Quintet, Jerry Ball Jazz and Blues Quintet, and Jason Ricci are all gearing up for The University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Coast 3rd annual Jazz and Blues Festival to be held Saturday, April 23.

The festival is open from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m., and is free and open to the public.

The festival has also teamed up with local artist Elizabeth Huffmaster to commission a one-of-a-kind painting representing this year’s festival. Huffmaster, using her signature watercolor technique, created the colorful jazz and blues theme featuring various musical instruments. T-shirts featuring Huffmaster’s painting will be available for purchase at the festival.

An Easter egg hunt for children ages 12 and under will begin promptly at 11 a.m. in front of the library. Parents can also photograph their children with the Easter Bunny from 11 a.m. – noon, also in front of the library.

In addition to the Easter egg hunt, other free children’s activities include a bounce house, dunking booth, face painting, pie-in-the-face game, goldfish pond and miniature horse. The university’s Gulf Coast Research Laboratory will be on hand to educate children using an interactive marine debris display and touch tank with live sea life, such as hermit crabs and horseshoe crabs.

The Shed BBQ and Blues Joint on Highway 53, Bull’s and Port City Café are among a variety of food and drink vendors to be featured at the festival, along with more than 60 arts and crafts vendors.

The music performance schedule is:

  • 10:30 a.m. – noon – Southern Miss Faculty Jazz Quintet
  • 12:30 p.m. – 2 p.m. – The Jerry Ball Jazz and Blues Quintet
  • 2:30 – 4 p.m. – Jason Ricci
  • 4:30 p.m. – 6 p.m. – The Rochelle Harper Band

The festival is sponsored by the City of Long Beach, Lamar Advertising, Magic 93.7 FM, Sun Herald Multimedia and WLOX-TV. Festival proceeds will be used to further develop Southern Miss Gulf Coast student organizations.

The Southern Miss Gulf Park campus is at 730 East Beach Boulevard in Long Beach. For more information on the festival, visit www.usm.edu/gc/jazz-n-blues/.