West Virginia's national image is one of a coal mining state inhabited by a bunch of uneducated hicks.
That's the way the Mountain State is depicted more often than not on television.
But there's one annual event that emphasizes the best the nation's 35th state has to offer.
The Greenbrier Classic Golf Tournament, conducted at the world famous 5-star Greenbrier Resort in White Sulphur Springs, shows West Virginia in a positive light.
For four days, the golf world is focused on Jim Justice's piece of paradise.
For four days, the rest of the nation is exposed to West Virginia's beauty.
You can't buy that kind of publicity, even with Mr. Justice's money.
Yes, Mr. Justice is a mulitmillionaire. But unlike many others who fall into that category, he spends his money for the public good.
He is one of West Virginia's larger employers, bringing jobs to an area of the state that certainly can use them.
Plus, his golf tournament has established a new trend.
Most golf tournaments are just that -and nothing more. Not the Greenbrier Classic.
Yes, during the daytime hours it's all about the golf.
But come nighttime, that's a much different story.
Justice provides those who attend the tournament with world-class entertainment.
This year's featured concerts are Maroon 5 on Friday night and Jimmy Buffett on the following evening.
Justice is a trend-setting innovator who is willing to take a chance.
He did that when he bought the Greenbrier.
He did that when he applied to conduct a PGA Tour event there.
And now he has done it again with his four days not only of golf but also of entertainment.
Justice isn't afraid to spend his money. He knows what he wants and knows how to get it.
In addition to serving as the owner of The Greenbrier, Justice also doubles as the head boys and head girls basketball coach at Greenbrier High School, which also has benefited from his generosity.
One improvement Justice made was getting the school's basketball games broadcast on the radio. But he didn't want just anybody calling the games. He wanted Fred Persinger of MetroNews, who is the voice of high school sports in the Mountain State. Even though Persinger lives in Hurricane, Justice was able to entice him to become the team's home announcer.
Justice is a skilled public speaker. He showed that when he delivered the keynote address at the Purple Pride Golf Tournament conducted at Woodridge Plantation. He was more than willing to come to Parkersburg for a good cause -to raise money for the athletic programs at Parkersburg High and Parkersburg South.
Although the Greenbrier Classic obviously is the most prestigious tournament to take place on an annual basis at The Greenbrier, Justice makes sure those who participate on the Callaway Junior Golf Tournament get to conduct their season-ending championship tournament there.
There's nothing he won't do to promote the best of West Virginia.
Contact Dave Poe at email@example.com