It’s beginning to look a lot of Christmas… in July for Mississippi community

Published 9:40 pm Wednesday, July 5, 2023

Oh baby, it’s hot outside, but it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas for groups already gearing up for the holiday season with two “Christmas in July” events.

Cocktail Party Fundraiser

The first is the annual “Christmas in July” cocktail party fundraiser at Dunleith, which supports the non-profit Christmas in Natchez organization’s mission to light up and decorate the city for the holiday season.

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Mamie Henry, president of the Christmas in Natchez committee, said festivities take place Thursday, July 13, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are $75 per person or $130 per couple, which includes heavy hors d’oeuvres, two cocktail tickets and a cash bar. There will also be a silent auction raising money for Christmas in Natchez. One of the hot items in the auction are two cruises donated by American Queen Steamboat Company, each for two people, valued at $6,000 per person.

Tickets can be purchased in advance at or at the door.

Each year, the committee has sponsored the maintenance of holiday decorations throughout the city and purchased new displays to accomplish the same mission of spreading holiday cheer to the community and its visitors.

Last year, a lighted storybook display in Memorial Park was used to accomplish this mission.

“This year, we are working with the American Queen to do a Christmas Village on the bluff,” Henry said.

The village includes 10 little huts that are set up with area merchants and vendors so that people can shop along the bluff. The Village will be open the weekend of the annual Christmas Tree lighting, which takes place the Saturday following Thanksgiving and will remain open through Christmas. Operating hours are still to be determined, Henry said, adding to expect to see them open on weekends.

“American Queen Steamboat Company is marketing this for us, attracting both boat passengers and drive-in traffic to benefit all the shops and restaurants in the area,” Henry said. “We’re also going to have other events associated with it, such as Santa Claus on the bandstand and Christmas caroling and music at the market. We are also working with business owners to have even more lights throughout the downtown area.”

One of these mini shops will be on display at Dunleith on July 13 for a sneak preview, Henry said.

Sidewalk Sales Event

Christmas in Natchez has also partnered with the Downtown Merchant’s Group, Downtown Natchez Alliance and Natchez-Adams County Chamber of Commerce to host the annual Christmas in July Sidewalk Sales Event, which will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the following Saturday, July 15.  Participating businesses will have “great sidewalk sales, Christmas items available and treats for the shoppers,” Henry said.

Maps to the businesses will be displayed on the corners of Franklin and Main streets at North Commerce so that visitors can find all the shops.

Every participating business will also have balloons in front of their business, she added.

Business owners who would like more information on the Christmas Village or the Sidewalk Sales Event may contact Henry at 504-722-5899 or the Downtown Natchez Alliance.

So far, participating merchants include:

Main Street

  • The Kitchen Bistro & Piano Bar
  • Butter Cakery
  • The Painted Petal
  • A Gallerie
  • Balance Boxing Studio
  • Olivina Boutique
  • One of a Kind
  • Darby’s
  • Murray’s Market on Main
  • Rise ‘n Shine Studio
  • Mile 363 Men’s Apparel
  • Locust Alley

Commerce Street

  • Consign & Design
  • Natchez Unique
  • The Shops at Kress
  • Consignment & More at Jacobs
  • Planet Thailand

Franklin Street

  • Natchez Coffee Company
  • Hal Garner at Nest
  • My Shoe Kloset
  • Brakenridge Furniture
  • Material Girl Fabrics
  • Mother’s Natchez
  • Moreton’s Flowerland
  • Lower Lodge Antiques
  • Natchez Olive Market
  • Steampunk Coffee Roasters / Papi y Papi

Pearl Street

  • Slick Rick’s Cafe


  • Silver Street Gallery & Gifts

Canal Street

  • Pig Out Inn BBQ