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Tour of homes to benefit library

NATCHEZ — Owners of historic houses and bed and breakfasts in Natchez will open their doors next weekend to support George W. Armstrong Library programs during the Friends of the Library Christmas Tour of Homes, organizers said.

From 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 8, guests can visit three houses that are seldom open to the public for one $20 ticket that may be purchased at any home the day of the tour, said Friends of the Library President Maria Bowser.

The Tour of Homes is a decades-old holiday tradition for Friends of the Library, Bowser said.

“Every year we ask different people in Natchez to open up their homes, typically within the same area so that the tour is walker-friendly,” Bowser said. “All of these are Natchez homes that aren’t usually on tour. The Friends are very grateful to the gracious homeowners for sharing their homes during the holiday season.”

Bowser said the event helps the Friends of the Library support many needs that the Library budget otherwise wouldn’t be able to provide, such as the summer reading program for students, staff bonuses, furniture and updating computer programs and library stock.

“This event is our major fundraising effort to support the library,” Bowser said. “The library has many needs that the budget won’t provide and the Friends of the Library try to supply many of them.”

Included with the tour — but in no particular order — are three late 1700s to 1800s style houses.

The home of Paulette and Des Crain at 206 Martin Luther King St. is well known for its holiday décor, Bowser said, while the home of Al Walker at 606 State St. holds many features that are original to the early construction in 1796.

Garden Song at 705 Washington Street features one of the oldest formal gardens in Natchez and owner Dan Gibson has often delighted guests with an impromptu concert, Bowser said.

Additional information can be found at www.NatchezLibraryFriends.org.

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