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DNR expands Hofwyl's hours
Bill Giles has some new ideas that could start to bring life back to Hofwyl-Broadfield Plantation State Historic Site on U.S. 17 in north Glynn County.

And Giles, site manager at Hofwyl-Broadfield Plantation, has reason to be optimistic in proposing a new business model for the 200-year-old plantation. The Georgia Department of Natural Resources says it will expand the operating hours of the state park to five days a week, keeping it open Wednesday through Sunday, beginning July 1. It would remain closed Mondays and Tuesdays.

In 2009, the Georgia legislature slashed Hofwyl-Broadfield's budget, giving it less than half the funding the site had received in the past. The site currently operates only three days a week: Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

The new model that is supposed to make the 1,268-acre historic site more financially self-sufficient will involve attracting large-scale events to the park.

"Part of Hofwyl's new operating model will be to pursue group business for weddings, corporate outings and other group gatherings," said Giles. "I'd like to encourage anyone who is planning a memorable event to tour the site and see our wonderful facilities."

Barbara Stewart, publicity chair for the Friends of Hofwyl-Broadfield Plantation, a citizen support group for the state park, is excited about the business model because it will allow more community activities to take place at the site. She also believes more signs on Interstate 95 would improve visitation.

"There's virtually no advertising on 1-95. If we could advertise (with) billboards, it would bring in many more out-of-state visitors," she said.

* Reporter Martin Rand III covers local news. Contact him at, on Facebook, or at 265-8320, ext. 324.

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