HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — The City of Huntington is blooming.

National judges with America In Bloom are in Huntington to close out the week to take a look at the city as part of a national beautification competition.

This is the first year Huntington has entered and Huntington In Bloom Co-Chair Tom Bell has a goal.

“I’m looking forward to winning the prize, first year out of the box,” said Bell.

Huntington is competing in the 30,000 to 50,000 population category with Winter Garden, Fla., Holland, Mich., and DeKalb, Ill.

Bell says he wants residents in his city to like where they live and a lot of work has gone into getting ready for the judges.  “Our theme is ‘Growing Pride’ and we think we’ve done a pretty good job on that and we’re going to keep on doing that ’til everyone in Huntington is very proud of their city,” he said.

Some of the things the judges will be evaluating are overall impression, environmental efforts, heritage preservation, urban forestry, landscaped areas and floral displays.  “They’re highly trained individuals and we’re going to get an evaluation from the judges and we’ll be able to improve what we’ve done so far and make it better for next year,” said Bell.

The judging will wrap up Friday.  There is no word on when the winner will be announced.

For more information about Huntington in Bloom, visit the organization’s website at www.huntingtoninbloom.com  or Facebook page www.facebook.com/huntingtoninbloom.

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