Smokin’ races through Sound


For weeks South Mississippi has anxiously watched the Mississippi Sound for signs of oil from the spill in the Gulf of Mexico. This week the focus changes to dozens of colorful powerboats, racing along an 8-mile course at speeds topping 150 mph.

Smokin’ the Sound, which debuted in 2004, is the first race of the year for the Offshore Super Series Powerboat Racing Association and a favorite of the more than 30,000 spectators who gather at Biloxi Beach, in docked boats and at shorefront casinos to watch the event.

“Oil is not an issue,” the event’s Web site said. “Come on down, the water’s fine.”

The four-day event includes a poker run, meet and greets with racers at various locations and a race village set up at Point Cadet. Pro-Am racing and qualifying runs are Saturday. The main races are Sunday.

Other events this week include graduations, fund-raisers and a special blessing for Coast boaters.

A Casting for Conservation Kids Fishing Rodeo will be free in Gulfport on Saturday and will include learning stations, demonstrations and refreshments.

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Department is hosting its annual bass tournament, Blossman YMCA is hoping to raise money for scholarships with its annual Strong Kids golf tournament and the American Red Cross is offering “Moonlight and Magnolias” to raise money for the Mississippi Gulf Coast Chapter. The Lynn Meadows Discovery Center in Gulfport will hold its annual disco-themed Boogie Night.
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