By Joycelyne Fadojutimi

 

            Debbie Head has somehow managed to accomplish what many consider impossible--she is both a warm and loving mother to her family, and a highly successful business woman. She owns and operates The Landing at Joshua Farms out on Highway 322with signs guiding customers to a delightful venue.

            Head named the farm in honor of her son Joshua. Guests and customers enter to a delightful scene of a fountain-fed fish pond and majestic, gentle Longhorn cattle the family keeps as pets. Head bore and raised her children on this 126-acre spread, and spent her first years as a wife and mother working part-time in Henderson for a florist/caterer. She found little fulfillment, though. She wanted to stay home with her family, and do it in a profitable fashion.

            She approached many banks and they all turned her down. None was willing to take a chance on her project till Kilgore College Small Business Development Corporation Business Advisor Virgil Conner came to her aid.

            "Virgil Conner is the man," she says. "He helped me more than anyone in this business. Virgil helped me with all my paperwork. He did everything for me."

            Without a college education, Head had to work harder than most in getting her business up and running, but this did not bother her in the slightest. Work is her middle name.

            "I am a hard worker. I do not have a college education," she says. "But I mow, clean toilets and clean these floors of my business."

            Her objectives are ambitious, but strictly unselfish.  She takes delight in helping others and collaborating with other businesses in ways that are mutually profitable.

            "I like helping others. I have no competitors," she says. "We are all partners. If someone needs a venue and I am fully booked, I direct them to others. I like working together."

            Head's company is mainly a wedding venue, but her clients also rent it for anniversaries, birthdays, family reunions, fund-raisers and various weekend and evening events. Her faith in Almighty God gives her the competence and compassion that makes her career both highly successful for her, and a blessing for her clients.

            "God sends me the people he wants me to have," she says. "This is a happy business."

            Her determination to make the events she hosts a delight for customers is a literal labor of love, especially considering weddings. Young ladies walking down the aisle always come away with memories of their special day that are warm and cherished for a lifetime.

            "This is a great memory for the couple. I want the brides that come to Landing at Joshua Farms to have fun and memories of their big day," she says. "We keep in touch with all our brides. We meet a lot when they are planning the wedding because we want everything to be perfect on her special day."

            This layout stretches through a lovely swath of Deep East Texas with mature native trees, ponds and wildlife, and is easily accessible. Customers from Longview, Gilmer, Kilgore, Henderson, Tatum, Lakeport, Lake Cherokee, Marshall, Hallsville, Gladewater, Overton, Tyler and all other points in this region of whispering pines. Head is expert at handling all party/event needs in a 10,000-square-foot facility, including planning, hosting and execution. Her vendors, staff and coordinators love their jobs as much as Head does hers, and always send customers away not just satisfied, but delighted with their event experience in one of the most beautiful spots on Earth.             

            Event booking rates start at a mere $2000, and services include:

 

            * Indoor & outdoor ceremony/event options.

            * Outdoor and indoor seating options.

            * Private, luxurious suites for brides and grooms.

            * Full-service, top-shelf bar.

            * Fully equipped kitchen.

            * In-house coordination and event planning, music/band/DJ/audio services, gourmet catering, fresh florals and numerous custom decor options.

            * Event security and valet service.

            * Such luxury options as bar specialties, bride & groom gifts, lavish pamperings & detailed requests, and various unique means of making special days even more special.

 

"My goal is to make them happy," Head says. "I want what they want."