Bay St. Louis, Mississippi
For beach lovers with a penchant for old architecture, affordable renovation spaces, and a mix of Southern grace, mystery,
and heat, Bay St. Louis is like a blank canvas at the junction of marsh, river, and Gulf of Mexico beach. Five years ago this
town(population 7,538) was put to the test when Hurricane Katrina ripped through the heart of the city. But the community
rallied, rebuilt, and has regained its artsy, quirky independence.
On a given morning in Mockingbird Café—the town’s gathering place/coffee shop/yoga studio—conversations range from local author Ellis Anderson’s new book, Under Surge, Under Siege, her firsthand account of the hurricane, to plans for a new downtown marina and renovations at the Depot District.
Outside the café, quiet streets lined with century-old Craftsman bungalows make a grid and lead toward the long beach (called The Beach) on the town’s southeast corner. And although the Gulf oil spill has residents concerned, the town is taking it day by day.