3 on the Road: Natchez Decorations - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

3 on the Road: Natchez Decorations

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
NATCHEZ, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

These Christmas and winter scenes have been highlighting the holidays in Natchez since they were first set up at the old Paper Mill decades ago. They became a regional tradition.

Burnley Cook agrees.

“People from Baton Rouge, Alexandria, came to it as it grew through the years,” said Burnley

But during the energy crisis in 1973, the paper mill did not set up the display and then when the Mill closed people figured they were gone forever.

But not all that long ago, they were pulled from storage and once again put on display atop the bluff overlooking the Mississippi River in downtown Natchez. But they were a little worse for wear, if not out and out ready to fall apart.

Obviously, someone needed to do something. “Absolutely. Somebody HAD to do something about it,” added Burnley.

Cook remembered the display from his childhood, and nostalgia at Christmas is an effective tool. So as Burnley was pondering the idea that ‘SOMEBODY’ needed to do something, he decided to be “the” somebody.

“Having such great nostalgic feelings for them I said, ‘Look. I guess I can try this.’” said Burnley.

The “this” that Burnley was willing to take on turned out to be a year’s worth of dismantling, restoring, recreating and reinventing. He spread the word on Facebook and had a bunch of helpers.

“It was a lot of consumption of plywood. It was a lot of painting. I mean from the ground up,” added Burnley.

Any chore that’s worth doing ends up being a lot more work than you figured. But the reward is in the eyes of the spectators, youngsters, and oldsters, who drive by the NEW display location, not on the bluff but at the lower end of the Natchez Visitors Center parking lot.

As time goes on more of the old scenes will be rebuilt. So it’s a NEW old Christmas tradition now. 

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