On March 3, 1966, one of the most devastating tornadoes in Mississippi history occurred. This tornado would come to be known as the “Candlestick Park” tornado, named after a shopping center in south Jackson which was totally destroyed by the tornado. One of only two documented F5 (the most violent on the Fujita scale) tornadoes to strike Mississippi in the 20th century, this tornado carved a path of destruction across central and east central Mississippi. The worst damage occurred in parts of Hinds, Rankin, Scott, and Leake counties, where a total of 57 people were killed and over 500 were injured.
This was the second deadliest, most damaging, and longest track (202.5 miles) tornado in central Mississippi during the 20th century.
For more information regarding this event, please contact the NWS in Jackson at 601-936-2189. If you are a Candlestick Park survivor and would be interested in sharing your memories of the Candlestick Park Tornado, please call us or send us an e-mail. While there is no ceremony planned for the 45th anniversary, we would still like to compile information and recollections for a potential 50th anniversary in 2016.
The Meteorology Behind the Tornado