Thursday, June 9, 2005

Letters to the Editor

PIM thank you:
Dear Editor,

To all employees that have worked for Plastics Industry of Mississippi (PIM), Mulay Plastics of Mississippi, Lighthouse/Holly Springs Plastics:

I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you for the support that you have given me over the last 33 years of operation. My venture started back in 1971 with Plastics Industry of Mississippi (PIM). We grew from 15 employees to 340 over a seven-year span. The plant had to start downsizing when furniture went from plastic to wood.

In 1978 Mulay Plastics bought the plant and started with 18 employees. Mulay grew the plant to 640 employees over the 23-year operation. In 1999 Mulay had to start downsizing its plants due to customer base moving to Mexico. Mulay was forced to build two plants in Mexico to meet customer needs. It was my job to build and oversee all five of Mulay’s operations. This led to a lot of overseas trips trying to compete with their market. Mulay finally was forced to sell off all of its plants with the Holly Springs plant being the last.

In late 2000 I started working a deal to purchase the Holly Springs plant. I found two other partners to join me in this venture. We were successful the first year. The second year our largest account moved to China, which caused us to downsize operations. We picked up several small accounts but not enough to survive in today’s market. Over the last year we have not been able to compete with the overseas plastics industry and continue to lose sales to them. They do not have the strict laws and high labor we have so they can produce and ship back to the United States cheaper than we can buy the materials.

It has been a long, hard struggle over the last 33 years trying to keep jobs in our home town. I am sad to say we stopped all manufacturing Feb. 28, 2005. I have been in contact with several companies trying to get them to re-locate to Holly Springs.

I would like to thank all the city and county officials, the Industrial Development Authority, Mississippi Economic Development, and everyone who helped me in keeping the plant open for the last 33 years.

I would like to say a special thanks to all the employees that worked so hard with me over the last 33 years. Thank you for your dedication, loyalty and hard work.

Your friend,
Terry Byrd

Response to letter:
Dear Editor

With concern, I am responding to the letter from Diane Clolinger pertaining to the upkeep of Mt. Pleasant Cemetery.

We have a small, yet beautifully natural cemetery at Mt. Pleasant for our loved ones. We are proud of our cemetery and community. The members of our association are called on from time to time to help in any way they can. Our grounds keeper is caring and efficient. Limbs and leaves are part of nature. As for the head stones that have fallen, the age of some of our graves date back to the 1800s. It is prudent that we do not disturb these headstones, because of the possibility of totally destroying what is left.

Our cemetery association shares Ms. Clolinger’s concerns and the people in our community provide help in many ways. There is a yearly clean-up day in the spring and we look forward to Ms. Clolinger’s help to improve the grounds. If not with sweat and labor, then monetary support would be helpful in the accomplishment of our mutual goals.

Sincerely,

Rosemary Coopwood
Secretary,
Mt. Pleasant Cemetery Association, Holly Springs

Kudzu Festival concerns:
To the Editor:

I just wanted to take this opportunity to write regarding the 2005 Kudzu Festival.

My family has attended the festival for the past three years. And, I’m sorry to say this year was a total disappointment. My granddaughters always look forward to riding the rides at the festival (they each have their favorite).

First, parking, $2, the admission cost, (child, $5, adult, $8) and the cost of the tickets/wristbands ($12) for three, two canned Cokes ($1 each -- there were no drinks to be had in a cup with ice) and two Pronto pups (2 x $2) was terrible enough.

Then there were only three “grown-up” rides for the older children. Most of the rides were for the very small children. From what I saw this year, we will never go back. I talked with several friends who attended the festival and they were in agreement, they will not be going back either. “Too much” money for “too little” entertainment.

What happened to the good old days when we had craft exhibits on the square, pony rides, an assortment of fun rides and amusements for the kids and drinks in cups with ice on a hot, sultry night?

It would be great if Holly Springs ventured out into the real world to some of the “festivals” going on in the communities around us.

Take a look at Southaven’s Festival, the Italian Festival in Memphis, etc. Find out who their exhibitors are, the festival “layout,” who the food concessionaires are, who they hire for their rides, etc.

It would be great to have some musical entertainment that coincides with the rodeo.

The Kudzu Festival has the potential to be a draw from many of our surrounding neighbors.

To have a “first class” festival it is going to take some work. If this festival is any indication of things to come, I won’t waste my time or money.

If we can’t do better than this, perhaps we should do away with it altogether.

If we’re going to do it, let’s do it right.

Barbara Lanphere
Holly Springs


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