published Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

Bessie Smith Strut will take place, admission will be charged


by Cliff Hightower
  • photo
    Pedestrians walk along M.L. King Blvd. Monday during the Bessie Smith Strut on the fourth day of Riverbend 2011.
    Photo by Dan Henry.
    enlarge photo

The Bessie Smith Strut will take place after all.

Irvin Overton, chairman of the board of directors for the Bessie Smith Cultural Center, announced tonight during a Chattanooga City Council meeting that they will hold the Bessie Smith Strut this year during the Riverbend Festival.

“We’re hoping we can set the bar,” Overton said.

He said almost two miles of fence will surround the M.L. King Boulevard where the Strut has taken place over the last 30 years. There will be three gates.

The center will also charge admission — $5 in advance, $10 at the gate, he said.

But Overton said Riverbend pins will be honored.

Overton said the liability insurance should be able to be obtained. He said an anonymous donor is helping to pay for the cost of insurance and fencing.

For more information, read tomorrow’s Times Free Press.

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