Travel Log – 10/18/2007


We had a very productive and fun week in Mississippi with our friends and customers at the Mississippi Department of Rehabilitation Services (MDRS). Shane Frost and Shoshanah Bain, two Alliance Senior Development Specialists, joined us. the week was primarily focused on training the MIS staff on v5 Xtend. Shoshanah and Shane were the principle trainers which freed up Rick and Lisa to meet with team leads, Paula Brown (MIS Manager) and the agency’s Executive Management Team.

MDRS has an initial plan for transitioning to v5 including a strategy for pilot testing the system and conducting statewide training. They face three primary challenges: keeping the MIS staff dedicated to the v5 Xtend effort, assiging a Training Team Coordinator, and planning for on-going v5 operations. The Executive management Team understands the situation and we’re confident will mitigate the issues for a successful implementation.

We also made sure we at plenty of local cuisine including Lisa’s favorite: BBQ! In fact, the first night we arrived, Shane and Shanah joined us in our RV to eat delicious take out from the Haute Pig restaurant (pronounced “Haughty” in Mississippi!) and to watch the New Orleans’ Saints trample the Seattle Seahawks.

~Lisa and Rick


Canton, Mississippi

Canton Facts

  • Although not a major battle site during the Civil War, Canton was important as a rail and logistics center. Many wounded soldiers were treated in or transported through the city, and as a consequence it has a large Confederate cemetery.
  • Canton was intermittently the adult home of slide guitarist and blues singer Elmore James, who was born and grew up about 20 miles north in Richland and nearby plantation communities. Modern slide guitarist Sonny Landreth was born in Canton but moved to Louisiana as a child.
  • The 1996 motion picture A Time to Kill, based on a novel of the same title by John Grisham, was filmed in Canton. The city was also the filming location for another motion picture released in 2000 – My Dog Skip, based on the memoir by Mississippi native Willie Morris. Artifacts from the filming of both movies were donated to the city, and today are maintained in exhibits in the downtown area.
  • The city is home to a large auto manufacturing facility owned by Nissan.
  • Canton, like a similarly-named city in Texas, is home to an extensive flea market event. With more than 1,100 vendors around the Madison County Courthouse square and other locations, the market has become one of the city’s largest events held each May and October.
  • Anne Moody, famed author and civil rights activist, wrote about her experiences in Canton in her book, Coming of Age in Mississippi, where she worked for CORE.