Our View: An Investigation





Wow, it’s been difficult to keep up with the happenings of summer! Normally, the slowest time of the year, this summer has brought us some surprises, some hard work, and some congratulations that need to be provided. So, here goes:

Congratulations to Uptown Clinton. The area has gotten a major shot in the arm - City Council acknowledged one aspect of this recently with a certificate of recognition to Upstate entrepreneur Leonard Pitts, developer of the $1 Million project to re-purpose the Hays Hospital as apartments in the Legacy at Hays. He also installed a large wall plaque that explains the building’s place in Clinton history.

And, that’s not all - the building across the street from Legacy at Hays seems primed for re-development, a consignment shop has moved in, an ice cream parlor has opened, an entertainment venue - throwing axes! - is open, and projects are on the horizon for a cigar bar and a bar in the former DE Tribble building. Other renovations are in the works, also, and there is word out there that an antiques business is a possibility (just needs a partner). Don’t belief antiques can drive a town? Take a visit to Waxhaw, N.C.

Congratulations are in order for Clinton City Manager Tom Brooks and the City Council for moving ahead on the Hwy 56 Recreation Center. We have been collecting the hospitality tax that has been promised for this venture for a long time, and this is the closest we have moved to a do-able plan.

Laurens County has been on fire - the administration planned a stop-over for the South Carolina 7 Expedition on its 30-day mountains to the sea excursion. It was “just” a stop-over, and not a giant project like the installation of the reef off the Charleston coast that was the excursion’s final project, but it “put us on the map” as far as eco-tourism goes. Also, what a great (but hot!) official opening for the Laurens County Veterans Affairs and Voter Registrations & Elections Center in Laurens. The re-purposed grocery store also may fulfill another county need - a new home for the Emergency Medical Service.

Congratulations to the litter-busters of the Laurens County Sheriff’s Office. They removed 5,820 of other people’s trash from our roadways: Brown, Foggie Estates, Simpson Mill, Torrington, and Longview; also, be aware, deputies are reading your discarded mail and watching you litterbugs on cameras.

A well-done is due to the United Way of Laurens County - they and their partners have installed a garden in the Lydia area of Clinton, beautifying one of the city’s textiles-legacy sites.

Staying in Clinton for the minute, Lee Atkinson is congratulated for his honor by the SC Coaches Association — 30 years, all in District 56. A successful baseball coach, Atkinson moved over to cross-country and his boys’ and girls’ teams have now won Region Championships. You might even see him running at the upcoming (13th anniversary!) Run Like a Mann event in the Professional Park at the Laurens County Cancer Association office.

Congratulations, Jeremy Marshall, for being selected the Clinton Fire Chief.

Congratulations, Keith P. Grounsell for being selected the Laurens Police Chief. He replaces Christie Lattimore who recently was awarded a Key to the City as she moves from Laurens to become a U.S. Marshal. Also, congratulations to Neil Roberts who is the new Laurens Fire Chief, upon the retirement of Bill Hughes.

Projects in Downtown Laurens continue to draw attention and praise to the County Seat. The City of Laurens recently received the 2022 Main Street Inspiration Award from Main Street South Carolina for Laurens Lights the Night. This award is the highest honor awarded by Main Street South Carolina. The City of Laurens was recognized for “its superior project leading to an improved quality of life for its residents and the Main Street community.” Members of Laurens City Council, Mayor Nathan Senn and Main Street Laurens Director Jonathan Irick accepted the award at the Municipal Association of SC annual meeting. They were joined by Main Street South Carolina Director Jenny Boulware, former director of Main Street Laurens. 

Laurens Lights the Night is an annual patriotic event held on the historic square in Laurens. The event includes a light projection show, tribute to veterans and a fireworks display.

 Add to that, the Main Street Inspiration Awards - Congratulations to the Holmes family for a statewide recognition.  Through their efforts and their relationships with Courthouse Coffee, Laurens County Development Corporation, Crowder Gulf, Chick-fil-A, Carolina Waste management, and the soon-to-open steakhouse, Rootimentary, “buildings in our city are coming back to life and creating a better quality of life across our city and community, #LaurensProud,” Mayor Senn said recently (they’re also getting a splash pad).

This is not a comprehensive list, because others have assumed new roles in the community; but we would be remiss if we did not add a long-time local service veteran Our Superintendent, Dr. David O’Shields, for his Lifetime Achievement Award from the state’s administrators’ association. Very much deserved - but a word of caution, you other school districts, You Can’t Have Him - Don’t Even Try!!

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513 North Broad St.
Clinton, SC 29325
Phone: (864) 833-1900
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