The Kansas State University football team takes on the Mississippi State Bulldogs at 11 a.m. on Saturday; but rest assured, Wildcats, there is plenty to see and do in Starkville other than watching the team take the field.

Like Manhattan, this Mississippi town is home to a land-grant institution, and though it’s about half the size of Manhattan (at 25,000 people), it offers a number of historical attractions and good places to eat.

Ulysses S. Grant Presidential Library

The library of the 18th President of the United States is on Mississippi State University’s campus in the Mitchell Memorial Library, less than half a mile from where the Wildcats will take on the Bulldogs, which is at David Wade Stadium.

Visitors of the library, which opened in 2017, can learn about Grant’s life and peruse artifacts related to his presidency and the history of the Civil War.

More information is available at usgrantlibrary.org.

Cullis & Gladys Wade Clock Museum

Also on the MSU campus, people can visit a museum boasting more than 400 clocks in the university’s welcome center. Charles Cullis Wade and his wife Gladys amounted the collection of antique clocks over the course of their life. Some of the clocks come from the 1700s.

On game day, the museum and welcome center is open from 9-11 a.m. and 8-5 a.m. the day before the game, said Cristi Stevens, welcome center coordinator.

More information is available at visit.msstate.edu/clockmuseum/.

Cotton District

Home to a plethora of restaurants, bars and local shops, the Cotton District is a short distance from MSU. The area boasts eateries such as the Bulldog Beer Company, Bin 612 and Stromboli’s pizza — all four-star restaurants, according to Google reviews.

There is also the Historic Hotel Chester, built in 1925, where guests can stay to experience some Southern charm.

Oktibbeha County Heritage Museum

The museum tells tales of the history of the county, as Starkville is the county seat. Exhibits include 20th-century medical techniques and also information about historical African American businesses, according to the museum’s website. Visitors are encouraged to make an appointment to see the facility by calling (662) 323-0211.

Information can be found online at oktibbehaheritagemuseum.com.

Get Out Starkville

For puzzle enthusiasts, visiting Get Out Starkville may be the perfect treat.

People participating in the escape room examine clues and hints to try to find their way out of the room in a time limit of 60 minutes. According to the website, the cost per person is $25, and up to eight people can participate in one room.

The escape room is at 1085 Stark Road in Starkville.

More information is online at getoutstarkville.com.

Tombigbee National Forest

Divided into two sections across the Magnolia State, visitors can reach the forest both north and south of Starkville. One portion of the forest is approximately 30 miles south of Starkville, and the other is about 45 miles of north of Starkville.

Tombigbee features two lakes and plenty of trails through pine and hardwood forests. Visitors can visit the two sites to fish, hike, take in the scenery and camp if they’re so inclined.

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