Thursday, April 24, 2008
Holly Springs Pilgrimage a huge success
By SUE WATSON
Tourists flocked in on buses and in cars over the weekend to tour historic homes and churches, the art gallery and Hill Crest Cemetery.
The Holly Springs Garden Club estimates a crowd of 1,100 visited the city in three days, according to Susie Murphy with the club.
That figure includes some complimentary tickets and several school groups that toured historic homes as part of the 70th Pilgrimage.
Holly Springs Junior High students and members of the Air Force Jr. ROTC participated in opening ceremonies at Montrose and visited several homes.
Betty Farina with the Holly Springs Tourism office said all booked tour buses showed up - five carrying 170 guests Friday and two bringing 27 guests Saturday.
Murphy said lunch sales went well with Montrose and the Town and Country Garden Club either selling out or close to out of food Friday.
Lunch boxes were also on sale at Christ Episcopal Church this year.
Murphy said the Sunday afternoon tourist crowd was larger this year than on average.
In fact, attendance this year was up about 40 percent over last year.
Tourists Friday braved rain showers to see the sights and were courteous and uncomplaining, Murphy said.
Weather was sunny Saturday for a successful Cemetery Tour that included some cannon fire reminiscent of the Civil War era. Actors dressed for the activity with “Union” and “Confederate” soldiers. The re-inactors camped at Montrose.
The Saturday evening event at Montrose was packed this year, Murphy said, with about 400 in attendance for a Southern catfish dinner prepared by sheriff Kenny Dickerson and his cooking crew. A large dance with live music was provided by The Diggs featuring Steve Elgin and Jody Jones.
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