When I personally think of Long Beach, I think of a traditional small southern town, quite and close to the beautiful clean beach. We asked the locals what they most loved about Long Beach and not to our surprise, they said they ‘loved the small town feel”! One local, mentioned she appreciates how engaged the community is with its residence. Long Beach offers monthly family movie nights on the local town green, a farmers market every Saturday morning on Jeff Davis, a splash pad at the park in down town, several parades throughout the year, and you can often find local bands playing at restaurants down Jeff Davis Avenue. Long Beach has events for people of all ages, an award winning school district, the Gulf Park campus of the University of South Mississippi, so its no wonder many flock to this area of the MS Gulf Coast. It doesn’t hurt that Long Beach is also in the middle of the MS Gulf Coast and very close to the shopping and entertainment of Gulfport. My husband and I personally live in Long Beach MS. We chose this area because we work every town along the MS Gulf Coast and since Long Beach is certainly located, we can quickly access multiple markets, restaurants, and things to do along the Coast line.
At one point, Long Beach was nothing more than an agricultural town, based around a local radish industry but today Long Beach has over 15,000 friendly residence who wave, will always say hi, and appreciate the towns culture. The local schools and their ball games are a big deal around here, on game day you can hear the kids and the bands from miles away but even when its not ball season, there is always something to do with the kiddos. A few things Long Beach annually holds are: A waterless night Christmas boat parade, during this event locals dress up their boats in lights and Christmas decor to parade them down Jeff Davis Ave to get voted to win the annual Christmas boat award. Long Beach also has one of the best Mardi Gras night parades where the floats are glowing with fun down Cleveland Ave. During the day you may find locals flying their beautiful large kites along the beach near the Jim Simpson Fishing Pier. Kewl Kites, a local Kite store on Jeff Davis Ave fly’s their kites during several days of the summer months. Kewl Kites allows kids to try out their kites and they hold contest for locals with their own kites!
Long Beach also has many events held in the city park inviting local bands, restaurants to offer tastings, drinks, and even silent auctions. The beautiful Long Beach city park is in the middle of down town. It has a splash pad and acres of untouched land for picknicks under the oaks, relaxing, or playing with the kids. The city park AKA “the town green” is where most of the Long Beach events are held. You can read about upcoming events in the Local Long Beach Breeze.
The University of Southern Miss – Long Beach Gulf Coast Campus
Things to Do:
Kite Festival – Kewl Kites
Long Beach Restaurants We Love:
Vogue Magazine Article On The MS Gulf Coast
Cruisin the Coast Annual Event
“America’s Largest Block Party”. Crusin the Coast is a festival to celebrate classic cars and a nostalgic period in time. It began in 1996 with only 374 registered vehicles. In 2017, that number has grown to over 8,000 cruisers from 41 states and even Canada & Sweden have participated in Cruisin’ over the years.
Jeepin’ the Coast Annual Event
Jeepin’ the Coast Topless is an annual event to benefit breast cancer awareness. The ride starts in Bay St. Louis and from bridge to bridge, it ends in Oceans Springs. Jeeps will hang a U-turn at the Ocean Springs bridge to circle back to the Bay St. Louis bridge. Funds are raised by buying shirts or simply giving what you can.
The Friendship Oak – Above is a picture of ” The Friendship Oak” located on the Long Beach University campus. Long Beach, has many gorgeous Oak tress but none like the magnificent “Friendship Oak” which is 5+ centuries old. Its a must see if you are in the Long Beach area.