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Weather forces historic changes to start of Garden Tour


WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- Heavy rain this morning caused a change that had never happened in the 60-year history of the Cape Fear Garden Club Azalea Garden Tour. The weather forced the ribbon cutting for the tour indoors instead of being at one of the homes on the tour.

The event was supposed to be held at the Forest Hills home of Lance and Meredith Lewis, but after a night of rain and more forecast, organizers decided this morning to move the annual celebration to Independence Mall. A short time later, the National Weather Service put New Hanover County under a flood warning that has since expired.

Despite the change in venue, the ceremony went on as planned, with Queen Azalea Jennifer Wayne cutting the ribbon to officially open the tour, albeit a little late. The weather also forced the Garden Club to delay opening the 12 gardens until 2 p.m. They will be open until 6 p.m.

All the gardens on the tour except Airlie Gardens are also open to ticket holders Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Airlie Gardens is only a tour stop Saturday.

Click here for more information on the Azalea Garden Tour

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