Florence, a great place to call home
By: Brenda Harrison
I hope you’ve noticed the new question we added to our weekly ‘Neighbors’ feature, appearing on our front page.
“What do you like about Florence?” was added this month in conjunction with the city’s promotion of its new brand “Full Life. Full Forward. Florence, South Carolina.”
I began thinking about how great it is to live here while sitting outdoors on South Dargan Street for the October Florence After Five concert while enjoying an evening breeze and listening to the Embers with a street full of friends, acquaintances and local folks.
My first thoughts were about why I am proud to call Florence my hometown. Mostly, it is because of the caring and generous people here who are concerned about those in need. I am so proud of the volunteers who work humbly and tirelessly to assist in the efforts of our many non-profits.
One of my favorites is Cooks For Christ which attracts hundreds of volunteers who give their time, service and money, to help someone here who is battling a catastrophic illness. Thousands of others support this effort by buying chicken bog plates.
There is House of Hope and the new Courtney McGinnis Graham Community Center that reaches out to the homeless in our community. Mercy Medicine is helping provide health and dental care for those who don’t have resources to provide this for themselves. Other great agencies that work to serve the underserved include Lighthouse Ministries, Help4Kids, SNAC, and our United Way. Of course, there are many more helping agencies not mentioned here equally deserving of accolades.
I am also proud of our cultural treasures: the Florence Little Theatre, the Florence Symphony Orchestra, Masterworks Choir, the Florence Museum, and the Performing Arts Center. Add to this list the beautiful and spacious Florence County Library.
I am so thankful for the Drs. Bruce & Lee Foundation which has been a major contributor for many of the beautiful facilities in our community, and for supporting so many of our non-profit agencies. We are truly blessed by the work of this foundation.
One of the things I love about Florence is its size – not too big and not to small – it is just right!
Being situated on two major interstates is another big plus for Florence. Its location makes it easy to scoot down to the beach for a dinner or weekend; and it’s and easy drive to Columbia and to the hill country or mountains of North Carolina and Tennessee.
Our local government is making great strides in improving and adding to our lifestyle, especially through parks and recreation. I’m thinking of the new soccer complex, the soon-to-be completed city gymnasium and the adjacent ADA playground, as well as big plans for park improvements.
And, there’s the impressive, state-of-the art judicial center under construction. Last but not least, the redevelopment of our downtown is certainly something we can all be proud of.
Florence is certainly a great place to proudly call home.