Main Street Feature: Clinton, Mississippi
Situated at the crossroads of Mississippi at the junction of the renowned Natchez Trace and Old Vicksburg Road, Clinton is home to over 25,000 residents. As the tenth largest city in the state, Clinton is known for its blend of metropolitan sophistication and historic charm.
During the mid 1800s, Clinton was often referred to as the “Athens of Mississippi” because of its two outstanding institutions of higher learning, Mississippi College and Hillman College. Founded in 1826, Mississippi College is not only the oldest university in the state but also the second oldest Baptist College in the world. Almost 200 years later, Clinton’s celebrated university remains central to the intellectual life of the community.
Located just blocks from the Mississippi College campus is the heart of Olde Towne Clinton, which is bursting with culture and personality. The streets are constructed of over 80,000 square feet of original brick from the 1920’s intended to enhance the charm and history of the downtown area. An array of eclectic retail shops, restaurants, art galleries, and historic homes line the streets of Olde Towne Clinton, also adding to the city’s unique appeal.
While the antique shops and restaurants are sure to impress visitors, many locals would describe the jewel of Olde Towne to be the award-winning mural by renowned local artist Wyatt Waters. This work of art captures the essence of Clinton ranging from the smallest details such as children playing soccer to larger historical landmarks such as Provine Chapel.
“Clinton has a small town feel with a strong sense of community, a fantastic public school system, strong churches, and city leadership that really cares about the town,” says Clinton native, Cynthia Evans. “It was a wonderful place to grow up and still is!”
With the help of the Main Street Association, Clinton is a city that continues to flourish both economically and as a community.
“Over the past eighteen months, Olde Towne Clinton has seen 11 new businesses open in our downtown,” says Clinton’s Main Street Director, Tara Lytal. “For us, this is an economic boom!”
This past year, the town successfully recruited the top three targeted businesses, which include the restaurant 303 Jefferson, James and Leigh clothing boutique, and Meme’s Brick Street Bakery. These new businesses and the thriving Main Street annual events, such as the Caterpillar Parade and the Fresh at Five farmers markets all enhance the town’s natural charm.
“The Main Street program has been a catalyst for development in our downtown,” says Lytal. “In the seven years since the program began, the progress has been dramatic. Clinton’s future is very bright!”
For more information about Clinton Main Street, visit www.clintonms.org/main-street.
MMSA Public Relations Intern