Magnolia Golf Trail offers a road map to the best golf in Mississippi

The Magnolia Golf TrailJACKSON, Miss. - The Mississippi Development Authority (MDA) Division of Tourism has announced the launch of the Magnolia Golf Trail's Affiliate Network. This program increases the benefits afforded members of the Magnolia Golf Trail. WLBT, the NBC television network affiliate in Jackson, is the first Magnolia Golf Trail Affiliate to carry a link to the Magnolia Golf Trail Web site (magnoliagolftrail.com). Agreements are also in place with Clear Channel Radio of Mississippi.

The Magnolia Golf Trail will offer each affiliate a picture-rich Web siteproviding tremendous golf content and special offers for their audience.

"Mississippi is rapidly becoming recognized as home to one of the nation's finest collection of golf courses and affordable ones at that," said Steve Hale, the Mississippi Development Authority's Executive Director. "The Magnolia Golf Trail Affiliate Network is a collaborative effort to further educate golfers about the exceptional golf and other attractions they can discover in Mississippi."

"We're so sure that players will love the Magnolia Golf Trail once theytry it that we're offering incentives for them to play our Trail'soutstandingcourses," says Scott Kelly, Co-Manager of the Magnolia Golf Trail.The link for the Trail is currently live at wlbt.com on the "Sports"and "Community" pages. It is the first of many the Magnolia Golf TrailAffiliate Network is establishing throughout the nation with the goal ofusingmainstream media to reach and inform golfers.

Other strategic partners include Hotels.com and Club Colors, which providethe Trail with a preferred Mississippi hotel booking engine and aprivate-labeled online apparel pro shop. Plans are to also make availableHotels.com's newly launched golf booking engine in 2003-2004.Golfers can now tour all 14 Magnolia Golf Trail courses with the Web site,search for the right place to stay and shop for Magnolia Golf Trail apparelby Tommy Hilfiger and Club Colors with one click.

"Mississippi courses have come together to offer something unique intoday's environment of Trail-hunting golfers - the Magnolia Golf TrailPlayersCard," Kelly says. "With the Players Card, golfers have access to exclusiverates at each course for one year from the date of purchase of the card. Asan added bonus, golfers can now use the MGT Players card to receive notonly special rates for golf but also for lodging, thanks to partnershipswithselect hotels statewide. In essence we have created a do-it-yourself golfpackage."

The Magnolia Golf Trail - Big OaksThe $49.95 membership fee for individuals includes 50 percent off an introductory round at the Magnolia Golf Trail course of their choice, and ongoing preferred MGT discounted green fees ranging between 20 percent and 40 percent. Members will also receive other benefits through use of their Magnolia Golf Trail Partners Card. More benefits are coming as the Trail intends to include area attractions and restaurants.

"We want to give a golfer every option to bring the family and let theTrail take care of the golf," Kelly says.

Plans are to expand the roster of MGT courses in 2003 and 2004, conditional on their passing the selection process.

"We plan to include the best that Mississippi can offer, and assurecardholders there will be variety, playability and affordability," Kellysays.

The courses on the Magnolia Golf Trail are Timberton (Hattiesburg), BeauPre (Natchez), Big Oaks (Saltillo/Tupelo), The Bridges (Bay St. Louis),Canebrake (Timberton), Mallard Pointe (Sardis), Caroline (Madison), NorthCreek (Southaven), The Oaks (Pass Christian), Patrick Farms (Brandon),River Bend Links (Tunica), Wedgewood (Olive Branch), Whisper Lake (Madison),Windance (Gulfport).

For more information, visit magnoliagolftrail.com

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