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Notorious prison being transformed into tourist attraction

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Razor wire loops over the outer wall of Brushy Mountain State Penitentiary in Petros, TN Photo by ADAM LAU/NEWS SENTINEL Razor wire loops over the outer wall of Brushy Mountain State Penitentiary in Petros, TN Photo by ADAM LAU/NEWS SENTINEL

PETROS, TN (AP) - The transformation of a once-notorious Morgan County prison into a tourist attraction is moving forward.

The Knoxville News Sentinel reports that developers have laid most of the groundwork for converting the Brushy Mountain State Penitentiary into a huge moonshine distillery complete with a museum, prison tours, RV park and music festival venue.

Developer Brian May says he can't give a timetable for when he expects construction on the Petros property to take place.

May says he and two fellow Chattanooga developers made dozens of trips to Nashville to get the state's go-ahead to transfer the property to Morgan County in January.

May says the prison's small cells festooned with the inmates' graffiti will remain essentially unchanged.

In 2013, voters in dry Morgan County approved a proposal to allow the distillery.

Information from: Knoxville News Sentinel, http://www.knoxnews.com

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