Since 1985, Hubfest has become a favorite annual tradition in Downtown Hattiesburg for families across the Pine Belt. People of all ages come to enjoy food, live music, crafts and other festival favorites. Last year, more than 250 vendors filled the downtown streets, drawing a crowd of 25,000 people or more. With food booth spaces already sold out, the Area Development Partnership (ADP), who puts on the festival each year, expects an even bigger turnout for 2017.
Hubfest will take place from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, April 1, in Historic Downtown Hattiesburg. It is a free-admission festival, making it the ideal community event for families. Attendees will enjoy a variety of activities, vendors and live music. Kids can spend the day in the Healthy Kids Zone on Front Street with jumps, slides, obstacle courses, games and more.
The one-day event features vendors from across the Southern region, providing something for everyone in the family to enjoy. Attendees will find artists selling pottery and handmade jewelry on one corner, and funky T-shirts and children’s clothing on another. From handmade soaps, children’s toys, woodworks and more, the vendors at Hubfest do not disappoint. Be sure to stop in and chat with local downtown businesses as well. Festival-goers should plan ahead for parking, prepare for warm, sunny weather and a day full of fun! With the exception of service animals, pets are not allowed within the festival boundaries, so please leave your furry friends at home.
No festival is complete without food, and Hubfest offers options to suit any taste. Whether you’re looking for local favorites, unique eats or festival classics, Hubfest food vendors can fill you up. Our advice: Don’t stick to one vendor! Buy crawfish from one vendor, a funnel-cake from another, and be sure to save room for more filling items like gumbo or a burger. After shopping around, cool off with an ice cold Coca-Cola or head to one of the local downtown restaurants for a beer and appetizers. Finish the day off right with a snow cone, kettle corn or a deep fried Oreo.
Great music sets the tone for Hubfest and this year will be no different. Festival-goers will enjoy a variety of music on four stages ranging from country to funk to rock ‘n’ roll. The featured headliner on the Main Stage this year is country music artist Josh Thompson and opening for Josh will be Kasey Tyndall. Bring a picnic blanket or folding chair and set up in Town Square Park for an all-day concert in the park featuring local and not-so-local favorites. Festival guides will be available at the information booth with a full schedule of each stage, so attendees can plan their day around their favorite artist’s performance. Be sure to stay tuned to Hubfest advertisements for the complete music lineup as the festival approaches.
A community effort
Although Hubfest is organized by the ADP, it takes an entire community to put on an event of this magnitude. The Sanger Theater and City of Hattiesburg are the presenting sponsors, providing not only monetary support, but labor and materials as well. Downtown businesses generously allow out-of-town vendors to set up shop in their neighborhood for the day, and organizations throughout the city provide volunteers to help with vendor check-in and festival operations.
More Information about HUBFEST can be found at HubfestMS.com