December 22, 2009 10:36:00 AM
Allen Baswell - [email protected]
When Pilgrimage 2010 wraps up in April, Columbus'' welcome center will have to find a temporary home for a few months.
At Monday''s meeting of the Columbus Convention and Visitors Bureau Executive Director/CEO James Tsismanakis announced that the CVB has received a $108,000 grant from the Mississippi Department of Archives and History. The grant will be used to help with restoring the Tennessee Williams home at 300 Main Street, which not only houses the city''s welcome center but was also the birthplace of the famed playwright.
"This money will be used for the restoration and stabilization of the home. We originally asked for $375,000, but we are extremely pleased to get this amount," Tsismanakis said.
Among the work scheduled includes re-roofing, floor work, restoring chimneys, replastering walls and dry wall work.
Tsismanakis said along with the MDAH grant, the CVB will provide $27,000 in matching funds.
According to the stipulations in the grant, a local entity must provide at least 20 percent of matching funds.
The board unanimously approved Tsismanakis to start the process of obtaining bids and making contingency plans to relocate the center during the restoration/restabilization work.
In other business, the board:
Whirllie Byrd, who previously served as the board''s secretary-treasurer, was chosen as vice president, and Glenn Lautzenhiser was chosen as the new secretary-treasurer.
Feldman hosted a live broadcast of his show Dec. 12 at Rent Auditorium on the Mississippi University for Women campus.
"He really enjoyed his visit to Columbus and indicated he would like to come back here again. He said he loves coming to Mississippi," Tsismanakis said.
Allen Baswell is a former staff reporter for The Dispatch