Take some time to enjoy beauty of Natchez

Published 7:00 am Sunday, July 25, 2021

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Looking for something to do this weekend? The forecast calls for hot temps — highs of 94 and 95 — and partly cloudy skies for Saturday and mostly sunny skies on Sunday.

That forecast makes it a good time to plan a leisurely stroll through Natchez to appreciate our beautiful and plentiful crepe myrtles.

The annual Natchez Celebrates the Blooms is under way through this month.

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Like most everything else, because of COVID, the festival this year is scaled down to three self-guided tours.

The first, Sip and See Walking Tour, includes downtown Natchez and the city’s largest concentration of crepe myrtles. Organizers said walkers will go by a variety of restaurants and watering holes made for enjoying breaks during the walk. It also includes a stroll past Bontura, home of the largest crepe myrtle in Mississippi.

The next is Bloom Drive, which will take you by beautiful area gardens and other sites, including Monmouth Historic Inn, which has more than 100 crepe myrtles on its grounds.

The last is the Historic Natchez City Cemetery walk or drive. See more than 500 crepe myrtles in that peaceful setting.

Elaine Gemmell, a retired master gardener and a crepe myrtle historian and activist, developed the maps, which allow residents and tourists alike to enjoy the beauty of the Natchez crepe myrtles and Natchez businesses while doing so.

Maps of the tours are available at VisitNatchez.org/events. Maps can also be found on the Facebook and Instagram pages of Natchez Celebrates the Blooms.

Get out this weekend and take time to appreciate the beauty of Natchez.