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TOOMSBORO, GA-Most of the tiny town of Toomsboro–population 600–has a pair of new owners. Built in the mid-1800s as a cotton-shipping stop on the railroad that crossed the state, Toomsboro lies some 115 miles southeast of Atlanta and 32 miles east of Macon, GA, in Central Georgia.

Two businessmen from neighboring Jones County won the bid at auction for much of the town property. Bill Lucado and his partner, construction contractor Alan Schomber, paid $265,000. Such a deal. They now own the locally well-known Swampland Opera building, a restored 1880s hotel, an old cotton warehouse, a restaurant, store, and several houses and vacant lots. Sellers Edwin and Margaret Lavender put their holdings up for sale to the highest bidder.

Lucado and Schomber said in an Associated Press report that they did not expect to win the bid and had no specific plans for the property. They did say they would probably complete the restoration of some of the buildings.

The prize in the package is the Swampland Opera, which for 25 years has offered free Saturday night bluegrass and gospel shows. Toomsboro also holds an annual Syrup Festival–for those unfamiliar with southern traditions, the foodstuff celebrated at this event is thick, dark sorghum syrup, best served on hot biscuits.

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