December 22, 2012 8:08:05 PM
JACKSON -- This month, the Mississippi Blues Trail's Google Maps web page reached more than 500,000 visits. The map can be accessed from the home page of the Blues Trail as well as from each individual marker page.
"Mississippi's musical heritage continues to be a major attraction for visitors around the world," said Brent Christensen, executive director of the Mississippi Development Authority. "Using interactive technologies like Google Maps makes the Mississippi Blues Trail both an entertaining and informative tool for those planning a visit to our state. We are pleased that so many web users are taking advantage of this valuable resource to learning about Mississippi's heritage."
The zoom capability allows users to view the location of every marker from coast to coast within the United States as well as the first international marker to date in Notodden, Norway.
Map users can zoom in to find the exact location of a marker, including GPS coordinates. Visitors can find information on each marker by clicking on the Blues Trail icon, and they can find markers they are interested in by selecting a specific area on the map to see what's nearby or by searching the alphabetical list on the side of the map.
With over 160 markers -- including those in Columbus, West Point, Crawford and surrounding areas -- the Mississippi Blues Trail is a museum without walls taking visitors on a musical history journey through Mississippi and beyond. The trail started with the first official marker in Holly Ridge, the resting place of the blues guitarist Charley Patton, and winds its way to sites honoring B.B. King, Muddy Waters, Son House and others.
Out-of-state markers are located in Chicago; Memphis; Los Angeles; Muscle Shoals, Ala., among other sites. The first international marker was erected in Notodden, Norway, this summer.
Last year, the Mississippi Blues Commission released the Mississippi Blues Trail iPhone application, which has a variety of features to allow users to navigate the trail and create customized itineraries to explore Mississippi's musical heritage. The free app is available for download on iTunes.
The Mississippi Blues Trail also has a strong online presence with its dedicated website, msbluestrail.org, and Facebook page, facebook.com/MississippiBluesTrail, featuring marker unveiling updates, photographs and more.