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Celebrate Labor Day with a bang

(ran Beach edition)

What's a Fourth of July fireworks display without a grand finale? Not much, some would say.

But for the city of Gulfport, it will mean fireworks on Labor Day. At its Independence Day celebration earlier this month, Gulfport's fireworks show ended with a whimper instead of a bang.

"About an hour before the fireworks, the (fireworks supplier) was going to salute the flag ceremony," said City Manager Bob Lee. "He lit a rocket that went into the grand finale fireworks."

The supplier, Bell's Fireworks, agreed to offer Gulfport another complete display at no cost. "We're going to build a festival around it," Lee said.

At its meeting Tuesday, the City Council approved plans to hold the Sept. 1 festival, called the Summer's End Community Picnic, at Gulfport Beach. The picnic will begin at 5 p.m., and will feature live music, some family contests and sports events and concessions.

House to become a B&B

A South Pasadena couple received approval from Gulfport City Council for their plan to convert a Shore Boulevard house into a bed and breakfast.

The Gulfport City Council on Tuesday approved a site plan and the change from a single-family home into the Sea Breeze Manor B&B at 5701 Shore Blvd. Council approval was needed because the structure is in a community redevelopment district.

The 3,700-square-foot home was built in 1923, and has four bedrooms and two outside cottages, said Patty Burke, who bought the property in June with her husband, Lawrence.

They plan to turn some of the rooms into suites with attached lanais before they open in early 1997.

"It's right across from the beach. I mean, waterfront property, no matter where it is, it's a good buy," Patty Burke said.

They chose Gulfport because they "saw a renaissance happening there. Things are popping up," she said.