JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Look at Interstate 10 in Mississippi anytime this week of Thanksgiving and you'll see a lot of cars. People are heading out for the holiday weekend, ready to enjoy what they love most - spending time with family.
The welcome center in Jackson County offers a bit of a break for weary travelers. Not to mention coffee and conversation.
The Nyland family spent some time here, but only for a moment, according to Spider Nyland.
"It's important for families to be together. So we're on our way to my wife's sister's home to and carry on a family tradition that we've been doing for years," Nyland said.
Henry Zorn has come a long way to be with family. He's from Connecticut and has one goal for the holiday weekend.
"Well, we hang out, watch football, eat a lot and just relax and enjoy ourselves. Walk on the beach," Zorn said.
When it comes to Thanksgiving, it's all about family, making the long trips just a bit shorter.
"It's very important just to be able to spend time with people that you love and just being able to travel around and be together," David Gagel said.
The Barringtons have a 10-hour drive from Florida to Texas. But that's no problem for them.
"This is the time of year you want to spend with your family," Cindy Barrington said. "We're fortunate enough that we're not too terribly far from our family that we can make it to visit with them on this occasion."
What do she do with the family?
"A lot of cooking, a lot of eating, watching football, just spending time together, that's it."
Mississippi's welcome centers play in integral role when it comes to helping these travelers on their way about the country to see family and friends. And this time of the year, the numbers are growing big.
"We were running about 300 to 400 people last week. And since Friday, we've been running about 600 to 700. We do expect it to pick up, we're hoping to get around 900," travel counselor Teresa Flores explained.
Federal highway officials estimate that more people will travel by car for the holidays this year than at any time in the past decade.