City chosen as grand prize destination

Published 6:00 am Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Brookhaven has finally arrived as a coveted vacation spot.

Attendees of the Garden Expo events in Jackson, Hattiesburg andon the Coast this year will have the chance to win anall-expenses-paid trip to Brookhaven in mid-October. Gardenaficionado Shirley Estes said Mississippi State UniversityHorticulturist Norman Winter was the one who promoted the city as avacation destination.

“He has filmed repeatedly in Brookhaven for his TV show, he’llcall and say ‘Shirley, do you know where a lot of so-and-so isblooming,'” she said. “He called me last fall and said he wantedone of the awards they give to be a weekend in Brookhaven.”

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Estes then contacted Chamber of Commerce Program Director KayBurton and they put together a package.”

One couple at each show will win the trip, Burton said, whichwill include two nights of complimentary lodging with breakfast, aprivate garden tour, admission to the Crystal Springs Fall GardenDays and complimentary dining for two both evenings. The weekendtakes place on Oct. 16-17.

Winter chose the spot because he likes it so much he has takento calling Brookhaven “The Garden Spot of the South,” Estessaid.

“It’s a beautiful town that has preserved its history, throughresidences and commercial structures,” Estes said. “All seasonlong, the people of Brookhaven take such pride in their homes andgardens that during all times of the year there’s something to seein Brookhaven.”

Burton said the heavy emphasis on gardening in Brookhaven lendsitself nicely to being the grand prize venue for something like aGarden Expo drawing.

“Because Brookhaven is the garden spot of the south, it fitswell with the Expo theme,” she said. “It’s beautiful here, and notonly that, we’ve got a great downtown, one of the best inMississippi. I think we’re one of the best kept secrets inMississippi.”

Estes agreed.

“Our charm comes from people’s pride in their property whetherit be their home or their businesses,” she said. “Many people havebeen involved in gardening and have a great interest in gardeninghere in Brookhaven, and our public space is maintained andmanicured year-round.”

Burton said the visitors who win the grand prize will findthemselves entertained no matter what their idea of entertainmentis.

“Brookhaven is worth exploring whether you’re interested ingardens, or history, or buildings, or if you want to shop,” shesaid. “We have a lot to offer, and we’re family-oriented andfriendly and welcoming.”