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franklin county times

Golden Moon serves as centerpiece
of Pearl River Resort

By Staff
GRAND VIEW / Leroy Clemons, a public relations representative with the Pearl River Resort, looks out from the observation deck of the Golden Moon Hotel &Casino under construction at the Choctaw Indian Reservation west of Philadelphia. The casino will have a "soft opening" next month and its grand opening in October. Photo by William F. West / The Meridian Star
By William F. West / community editor
July 28, 2002
CHOCTAW Leroy Clemons' job is to promote the Pearl River Resort, but until recently he had never been to the top of its soon-to-be crown jewel: The Golden Moon Hotel &Casino.
Now he can say he has.
The deck offers a view of the Silver Star Hotel &Casino, the Dancing Rabbit Golf Club, the recently opened Geyser Falls water park, the Choctaw Indian reservation, Highway 16 and timberland as far as the eye can see.
Clemons, 40, has spent most of his life in Philadelphia, the seat of Neshoba County government that has been bustling with economic growth since the Choctaws opened the Silver Star eight years ago.
Clemons is in his second year in public relations with the resort, a development of the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians.
Still working
Meanwhile, at ground level of the Golden Moon, construction crews were getting the place ready by working at break-neck speed or communicating with each other on cell phones.
A "soft opening" is set for Aug. 26, with the grand opening scheduled for Oct. 4. The big celebration had been set for September but was delayed to allow time to work out possible kinks.
Gregg Bordelon is project manager for Meridian based-Mitchell Signs, which installed the neon lighting at the Silver Star and is doing the same at the Golden Moon.
Bordelon's crew of eight to 10 people is in its 11th week on the job installing blue, gold, orange and green lighting.
Casino contents
Near where Bordelon and his crew worked were slot machines whose lights were either on or ready to be turned on. The machines had such names as "My Rich Uncle," "The Munsters" and "Texas Tea."
The Golden Moon will have 1,750 slot machines, but those are not the only games. One room will have table games with an upscale bar and lounge.
Other attractions will include a steak house and an Asian restaurant and a sushi bar decorated with a water wall. For more modest tastes, the resort will have a coffee shop, buffet, sports bar and 24-hour bistro.
People looking for entertainment will be able to walk to a show lounge and bar with a bandstand and dance floor. In the center of the ground floor will be another dance area surrounded by water walls.
For those wanting to relax in the water, the resort will have an outdoor pool and an indoor pool with a whirlpool spa. And for those who like go on shopping sprees, the resort will offer a cluster of retail stores.
A nearby room with automated tellers and other banking-style services will be available for those who need money on the spot.
Unusual design
Walker, 38, called the Golden Moon design "very unusual. I think it matches up with anything you see in Las Vegas or Atlantic City for sure, right here in Philadelphia, Miss."
Yates Construction of Philadelphia is the contractor for the Golden Moon. Jim Smith, project supervisor, said the presence of numerous workers about the resort is "a normal thing for this type project."
The new hotel will have 571 rooms and suites. An elevated, indoor crosswalk will connect the Golden Moon with the Silver Star where convention space already is available.
Smith acknowledged that success breeds success.

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