With the iconic crossroads sign marking the intersection of U.S. highways 49 and 61, Clarksdale has long been a blues mecca, but with the advent of historic markers along the Mississippi Blues Trail and funky new lodging options, Coahoma County is drawing more and more visitors from all over the world. The frequent festivals in the area continue to grow, and clubs such as Ground Zero, co-owned by Morgan Freeman, and Red’s Lounge offer live music on a fairly regular basis.
Several museums give visitors great exposure to the blues history here. The Delta Blues Museum has a large collection of artifacts, including musical instruments, recordings, and costumes, while the Rock & Blues Museum is packed full of music memorabilia from the 1920s through the 1970s. Cat Head Delta Blues & Folk Art is a one-stop shop for everything Mississippi blues including music CDs, DVDs and books, while other shops and galleries in downtown Clarksdale feature unique and hand-made items with lots of local flavour. And speaking of local flavour, there are lots of wonderful places to eat along the way, so check visitclarksdale.com to choose several.
Many Mississippi Blues Trail markers line the streets of Clarksdale honouring the history and contributions of bluesmen such as Sam Cooke and Ike Turner as well as historic sites. Friars Point is the site of a Country Music Trail marker for legend Conway Twitty, the North Delta Museum, and a Blues Trail marker for Robert Nighthawk. The Mississippi Freedom Trail has a stop in Clarksdale to mark the spot of civil rights leader Aaron Henry’s 4th Street Drugstore, which became a gathering spot for civil rights planning for decades.
Accommodations here range from franchised hotels to lots of personality-filled options — from lofts, guest houses, and sharecropper shacks to a casino hotel. For the adventurous outdoor types, John Ruskey of Quapaw Canoe Company takes individuals and groups on trips down the Mississippi River, and he’ll even cook meals over a campfire.
Clarksdale and Coahoma County are rich in soil and even richer in heritage, so come find it all at the Crossroads.
Clarksdale Film Festival
January 29 – 31
Juke Joint Festival And Related Events
APRIL 9 – 12
Friday At The Stage
Each Friday In May
Cat Head Mini Blues Fests
April 12, August 9 & October 11
Clarksdale Caravan Music Fest II
May 8 – 10
June 5 – 6
Sunflower River Blues & Gospel Festival
Delta Busking Festival
September 25 – 27
Ms Delta Tennessee Williams Festival
October 2 – 3
Second Street Blues Party
Pinetop Perkins Day
Deep Blues Festival
October 30 – 31
Holiday Festival Parade
Call 662-627-6149 or visit VISITCLARKSDALE.COM