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Seven W.Va. cities share spotlight at ‘showcase’

Exponent Telegram photo by Jim Davis Elkins Mayor Van Broughton loses his marbles during Wednesday evening’s City Showcase at the West Virginia Municipal League’s annual conference in Bridgeport. Flanking Broughton are Bridgeport City Manager Kim Haws, left, and Bridgeport employee Amy Kelley.
Exponent Telegram photo by Jim Davis
Elkins Mayor Van Broughton loses his marbles during Wednesday evening’s City Showcase at the West Virginia Municipal League’s annual conference in Bridgeport. Flanking Broughton are Bridgeport City Manager Kim Haws, left, and Bridgeport employee Amy Kelley.

BRIDGEPORT, W.Va. — Seven area cities put their best faces forward Wednesday evening as part of the West Virginia Municipal League’s annual conference in Bridgeport.

The municipal league’s first City Showcase — outside the Bridgeport Conference Center — featured exhibits from Bridgeport, Clarksburg, Weston, Buckhannon, Fairmont, Elkins and Morgantown.

“It’s an innovative feature,” said Lewisburg Mayor John Manchester, the municipal league’s president. “It really helps showcase best practices of cities and has been a real focal point of the conference.”

Bridgeport City Manager Kim Haws came up with the idea.

The Arizona League of Cities and Towns has had a showcase of cities for years, said Haws, who once worked in Arizona.

“I said, ‘We need to do something like that,’” he said.

Haws said he was pleased with how his brain-child turned out.

“For a first-time showcase, this is really great,” Haws said. “It’s created some good energy for this conference, and that was our intent.”

The savory aroma of pasta and pulled pork sandwiches wafted through the tent, while Chanler Bailey and Lisa Bays performed calypso music on steel drums.

Lisa Dooley, the municipal league’s executive director, labeled the showcase a success.

“My members are coming up to me and saying we need to do this more often…

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