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Apr 5, 2012
Zippity Yay!

Dear Y'all,

Mercy-did we have some fun or WHAT?! If you missed Fondren's Zippity Doo Dah® Weekend here in Jackson, I am truly, deeply sorry!

Looky here at this video to see what we did without you--and make sure you're with us next year:

Now keep in mind, that video is ONLY a sampling of the BankPlus Zippity Doo Dah® Parade itself.

The video does NOT show me riding atop the Budweiser Clydesdale hitch brought to us by Southern Beverage, Sal & Mookie's Kid's Carnival, the Comcast Come On In Party at the Hilton, BancorpSouth's Arts, Eats & Beats in Fondren, First Commercial presents The Bouffants® playing at the street party in Fondren, the Mississippi Blues All-stars at the Pepsi Ball, Cathead Vodka's Bacon, Biscuits, Bloodies and Books launch party for FAT IS THE NEW 30 with Kacey Jones performing, the Mississippi Mass Choir on the Clear Channel/ERGON Stage, the BudLight Pearls & PJ's party with Chris Gill and the Sole Shakers, Southern Beverage's Krazy Karaoke, or the Hilton Bathrobe Brunch. To give you even a taste of what all you missed over the four days would be a feature-length film!

(**Note:  If you were at the Sunday Bathrobe Brunch for the first time, our singer Lelon Thompson sends his abject apologies. He was ill and is such a trooper that he didn't want to let us down by canceling. Those of us who have heard him sing want to assure you that normally he has the Voice of an Angel--truly.)

The dates for ZDD(TM) 2013 are March 21-24-mark your calendars NOW and commence planning your outfits and watching for sales on battery-operated lights.

The GRAND MARSHAL for the 2013 ZIPPITY DOO DAH® Parade will be our very own AUNT FAYE from Texas-who will be 100 years young. Her motto: "GROW OLD LATER." We're thinking our theme might be "SWEET (blue)BIRD of YOUTH.

We know we had a few "bus issues" this year! Snort! You have NO IDEA what "bus issues" we NEARLY had! About 6 or 7 weeks out, TCBITW talked to our usual bus provider-of about 10 years-and let them know we would be needing the same number of buses again this year, possibly more. He told them that he'd call back with the definitive schedule but wanted to make sure that we were on their books. He was assured that it was "no problem, we gotcha."  

When he called them with the exact schedule-the WEEK BEFORE the event-he was told THERE WERE NO BUSES. Yep, they had rented them all to someone else!  

TCBITW called CLINE TOURS and was initially told that they, too, had no tour buses-but then, the owner said he did have some older units that had been totally refurbished, air conditioned, etc. and a smaller tour bus. Would we be interested in those? TCBITW nearly wept with relief, since he had been wracking his brain for 2 days trying to figure out how he was going to set up CAR POOLS to transport all of us to and from Fondren for four days!

So, we had the funky, older model buses--Kyle said he thought they looked like prison buses--which we all thought was hilarious and totally fitting for us! We had bus drivers who were not familiar with either the area or the Queens and we had a few Very Interesting Diversions but we got to everything and back eventually and the drivers had a ball with y'all!  

We know there were Some Issues--but trust me, they were nothing like what NEARLY HAPPENED! We are so very grateful to Cline Tours for stepping up and saving us--AND, they also made a very generous donation to Batson! So, do we love them? Oh, my yes. Are they our new bus company? I reckon they ARE, forever and ever amen!

Please do take a second and drop me an e-mail with What Worked and What Didn't and What You Would Like More or Less of for next year. Write to me at hrhjill@sweetpotatoqueens.com

 Go take it and you might win a copy of the book!

Duane Jones' fantastic photos will be posted soon and I'll post a link on Facebook as soon as I have it-so check my pages often. And please post your own photos on my Facebook pages and on the page for Zippity Doo Dah® in Fondren--y'all are boundlessly creative and endlessly entertaining!

You can order signed copies of my latest book FAT IS THE NEW 30 from our website by clicking here and of course, you can order printed books, audio versions and eBooks from AMAZON by clicking here.

(Do order lots and lots. If you were here, I'm sure you noticed that my face lift is ready for a re-do!)

Judy Delaet of Forest, Mississippi, won the PATTY PECK HONDA DOO DAH DAY(TM) BLUE CAR GIVEAWAY and we'll be posting photos of her with her brand new blue Honda Civic in a few days. She was out of town when we drew her name so her husband answered our call-and I'm not sure he believes us YET that she really did win that car!  

We don't have a total on the gift to Batson Children's Hospital yet but I'll let you know as soon as we have it. Thank you so much for heppin' us hep them chirren!

My next letter will have that total-and a list of ALL our incredible sponsors who made this amazing Weekend possible-but in closing, I just want to thank the Fondren Renaissance Foundation, the ZDD(TM) Committee and the entire neighborhood of FONDREN for making us so very welcome in their midst! Queens looove us some FUNdren!

Continue Being Particular-

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