Local leaders unified for area’s future

Published 11:57 pm Tuesday, July 1, 2008

NATCHEZ — When the new city administrations took over in Ferriday and Natchez Tuesday, they — along with the city of Vidalia — agreed to work together for the good of the area.

Part of working together meant getting to know one another, and to do that the Natchez-Adams County Chamber of Commerce and its tourism council hosted a luncheon at the Hampton Inn and Suites.

“One of the things we wanted to show today was the unified effort of the community and how by working together how far we can move forward,” Natchez Chamber of Commerce Tourism Council Chair Rene Adams said.

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When the communities have worked together in the past, more has happened for the area as a whole, she said.

“Over the course of my 20 years involved with tourism in Natchez, I have seen Ferriday develop its strong points with its music and I’ve seen Vidalia grow and prosper to become a major part of our tourism industry,” she said. “What a wonderful time to bring everyone together.”

It is always important when governments transition, but this transition is particularly important with the current business, industrial and private expansion going on in the area, Chamber of Commerce President Cliff Merritt said.

“This is perhaps the biggest boom we have seen in 50 years,” Merritt said.

Natchez Mayor Jake Middleton said he saw the transition as the beginning of a new relationship between Natchez, Ferriday and Vidalia.

“I would like to see all of our boards get together once a month over lunch to talk about what we can do for our area,” Middleton said.

All three mayors attended each other’s oath taking ceremonies, and in his inaugural address McGlothin said he believes Ferriday will have a good working relationship with the surrounding communities, parishes and Adams County.

“We finally figured out that the river is not that wide, and that if we drown, we drown together,” McGlothin said.

In his own inaugural speech, Copeland agreed.

“We are beginning to realize that it is not Vidalia, not Ferriday and not Natchez,” Copeland said. “It’s the Miss-Lou.”

The point of the communities working together is wider than one single facet of the economy, Adams said.

“It’s not just about tourism,” she said. “It’s about the Miss-Lou.”