If you ever happen to find yourself in the Mississippi Delta, I recommend strolling through the small town of Leland.
The Historic Highway 61, also known as the Blues Highway, runs right through the heart of this sweet, little town.
Here, you’ll find the Blues Museum, the Wildlife Heritage Museum, and the Outdoor Hall of Fame. But if you’re looking to make a quick detour to Leland, MS, these are the five excellent reasons that won’t add much time to your trip.
Birthplace of Kermit the Frog
Leland is best known for being the boyhood home of the creator of the beloved Muppets, Jim Henson.
As such, Leland claims the title of Birthplace of Kermit the Frog. Henson spent a significant amount of his childhood, as the story goes, enjoying the nature Leland has to offer alongside his buddy, Kermit Scott.
It’s believed the famous frog was named after Henson’s childhood friend.
To commemorate the honor of being Henson’s boyhood home, you’ll find a two-room museum dedicated to Henson and the frog that made him famous.
Browse through memorabilia and photos, and get your picture taken with an oversized plush Kermit. Chat with the curator who is full of Muppet knowledge and enthusiasm. And, of course, grab a souvenir or two.
This charming museum is very quaint, but well worth the stop as you pass through Leland, especially for Muppet fans.
Know Before You Go:
- It’s located on the banks of the Deer Creek and provides an excellent place to have a picnic.
- There is restroom inside the museum, making the museum a perfect place to stretch during a road trip.
- Admission to the museum is by donation, it’s worth a couple dollars per person to enjoy this piece of history.
4 Blues Murals in Leland, MS
It wouldn’t be a detour through Leland without cruising along Main Street to admire the Blues Murals!
I love finding murals when I travel and the mural in Leland did not disappoint. The historic downtown is only a couple blocks long so you can easily park the car and walk to these.
The first mural (corner of 4th and Main streets) depicts musicians who were born or lived in the immediate area. The mural was painted by local artists.
It is a beautiful display of the following musicians: Caleb Emphrey, Sam Chatmon, Eugene Powell, Lil’ Dave Thompson, Alex “Little Bill” Wallace, Eddie Cusic, Willie Foster, Johnny Horton, Joe Frank Carollo, Harry “Bub” Branton, Pat Thomas, Johnny Winter, Edgar Winter, Jimmie Reed, Boogaloo Ames, Little Milton, and James “Son” Thomas. You can find Johnny Winter’s signature near the mural.
The second mural (corner of 3rd and Main streets) honors a local band called “Doc’s B’s.” Doc Booth is featured on the sax with Boogaloo Ames on keyboard. They used to play at Lillo’s Italian Restaurant every Thursday night. While they likely don’t play there anymore, Lillo’s might be a great dinner stop!
The third mural (also on the corner of 3rd and Main streets) celebrates “The King of the Blues,” B.B. King. This was the first mural to be approved by the King himself. Six decades of Mr. King’s life are featured through this mural.
The fourth and most recent mural (corner of Broad Street and South Deer Creek Drive) “Honors the Life and Music of Mathis James Reed.” Better known as Jimmy Reed, this Blues legend is forever commemorated on the building of Stovall’s On The Creek.
You could easily spend some quality time in Leland, Mississippi. But even a quick detour to the small town is very rewarding.
Enjoy the fond memories of the classic Muppets, admire the memorable murals, and grab some local eats.
You’ll be glad you took the detour to Leland!
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