Downtown makes space for festival

TUPELO – If you haven’t bought a Mother’s Day gift yet, there’s no need for concern.
The 40th GumTree Festival will be open Saturday and Sunday.
Today, Spring, Court, Broadway and Jefferson streets will be closed around the Lee County Courthouse square.
That will allow more than 80 artists to set up booths filled with paintings, jewelry, glass sculptures, pottery and more.
Do you buy something for your mother and hope she likes it? Or do you bring your mother and let her pick something out so you know she likes it?
Kit Stafford, festival director, said the answer depends on the mother.
“If it was my mom, I’d bring her and pay attention to what she looks at,” Stafford said, “and do some backtracking.”
Events begin at 7 p.m. today with the GumBall at Goodlett Manor. Tickets are $25, and the FoShorchestra will perform. Artists will donate work for a silent auction to support GumTree Museum of Art programs.
On Saturday and Sunday, there will be a variety of musical acts and other performances on festival stages.
“We’re going to have a lot of fun for the kids,” Stafford said. “We’re going to have four bounceys, and other activities. We’re going to have a packed kids’ area for families.”
Shop for Mother’s Day, get a jump on Father’s Day, or buy something for yourself. And if money is tight, don’t worry because the festival is free.
“We just want people to come out and have a good time,” Stafford said.

Mother’s Day weekend
- What: 2011 GumTree Festival

- When: 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Saturday; 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Mother’s Day

- Where: Lee County Courthouse square, Tupelo

- Tickets: Free

- Info: (662) 844-2787, gumtreefestival.com

- Extra: The 2011 GumBall will be 7 p.m. Friday at Goodlett Manor in Tupelo. Tickets are $25.

M. Scott Morris/NEMS Daily Journal