GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Work is underway to turn part of Grass Lawn into a visitors center for Gulfport. The visitors center will be in the annex to the east of the main building.
Gulfport's Economic Development Director David Parker said between now and the grand opening next week, the city is moving in furniture and having visitor's brochure's printed to showcase the many historic and tourist attractions in the city.
Parker said since tourism accounts for 25% of the economy in the city, it's vital to have a resource center for visitors. The city is partnering with Visit Mississippi Gulf Coast to help train the two people who will run the Gulfport Visitors Center.
Grass Lawn is a replica of a historic property destroyed in Katrina. The original two-story antebellum home was the vacation home of Dr. Hiram Alexander Roberts, a surgeon and planter from Port Gibson. The original Grass Lawn was on the National Registry of Historic Places and was a popular wedding and party venue.
The New Grass Lawn is still used for special events.
A ribbon cutting for the new Gulfport Visitors Center at Grass Lawn is set for March 3.