By Dennis Seid
BALDWYN – After more than a year of planning, the three-day sesquicentennial of the Battle of Brice’s Crossroads and the Battle of Tupelo/Harrisburg begins today.
“We have hundreds of re-enactors coming in, and many of them came in Tuesday,” said Edwina Carpenter, the director of the Mississippi Final Stands interpretive center. “We’ve had people come in from, Alaska, Ireland, Texas, California, New York, … they’re coming in from all over.”
Today’s festivities begins at 10 a.m. for Discovery Day at the visitors center.
Historical and educational camps will be set up through Sunday, and activities tents will host a variety of programs.
The Battle of Brice’s Crossroads re-enactment will be Saturday at 2 p.m. It will be preceded by a walking tour of the battlefield from noon to 1 p.m.
A period ball and dance is at 8 p.m., and visitors are welcome.
On Sunday, the Battle of Tupelo/Harrisburg re-enactment will be held at 2 p.m.
Carpenter is hoping for the weather to cooperate, but said the events would go on regardless of the conditions.
“We did move the battle re-enactment site to the other side of the road from what we originally planned because of all the rain we’ve had, but the area we’re using is mowed and kept up and it’ll be better for everybody,” Carpenter said. “The battlefield is 1,500 acres, so we’re still on the battlefield.”
Additional gravel has been put down to accommodate vehicles, and several tents have been set up that will provide shelter from both sun and rain, Carpenter said.
“We’ve had a lot of volunteers prepare for this for a long time, and we’re all looking forward to having a great three days,” she added.
For a complete schedule, visit www.finalstands.com.