A good Facebook friend of mine, who very recently moved from Tallahassee to Atlanta, has been sharing some of the cultural and culinary adventures that he’s had. I’m always glad to hear these tales but the last one made me feel just a little bit competitive. I mean after all, we have cultural and culinary fun in White Springs too, and I didn’t want him to get too big headed about his Atlanta adventures. Here’s what he posted on Facebook that I felt compelled to reply to.

“Last night we found a deep dish pizza place around the corner from our house. Today we rode the Marta to a place in midtown that was an "adults only" burger joint. It just had a silly menu, but the food and bloody Marys were real good. Then we went to REI and other fine Atlanta retail establishments. I got my 6000 steps in today. I got a diet coke at the CVS to mix with some apple Crown Royal I got for Christmas, and some Jordan almonds. Then we watched an ‘Art’ movie with sub-titles. Except for all the traffic, and waiting in line at the restaurants, it was a pretty good day.”

Well that all sounded fine and dandy but I know that people can have fun adventures in White Springs too, if they can just manage to find us. So, not one to let White Springs be outdone, I replied to my Atlanta friend with a report of high end adventures in our own tiny town.

“Glad to hear of your Atlanta adventures. Sounds like you had fun. We know how to have a fun day in White Springs too. Yesterday my buddy and I went down to the Suwannee Hardware store and bought two hundred crickets. Then we went to the Dollar General and got two giant bags of Cheetos and a case of Miller Lite, and then we went canoeing and fishing on the world famous Suwannee River. Well sir, we caught a mess of fish! We also drank all the beer and ate both giant bags of Cheetos. And then, through the miracle of natural biological distillation, we dyed the Suwannee River orange all the way from White Springs to the Gulf of Mexico, without tipping over the canoe! Then we came back home, called the neighbors and had a big fish fry, and then, to make the perfect ending, we watched football and NASCAR on TV! Oh, and we didn’t spend any time in traffic except for at the boat ramp, which is always entertaining! What do you think about that, Hotlanta???”

Perhaps I was a little competitive, but that is because I do feel that White Springs can compete with anywhere, and we have much more to offer than just my, hopefully, humorous example. That is why so many people leave here and then come to their senses and return to live here. That is why the numbers of vacation rental units in our area are on the increase. That is why we had hundreds of cyclists in White Springs this weekend for Suwannee Bicycle Association’s “Ididaride” event. Yes, participants came from all over Florida and from Michigan, Toronto, Arkansas, Tennessee, North Carolina, Mississippi and Georgia! To White Springs! Folks do discover that we have got a lot to offer, once they figure out where the heck we are! If you’re from White Springs, you’re lucky. If you live here you’re even luckier! Take that, Atlanta, and … Come see us!

Well once again I’ve said enough! Let me hear from you. I am thankful that we can depend on each other, and I hope that we can continue to feel proud of who we are and where we’re headed, and that we all appreciate how White Springs and its surrounding region is a very special place, to be honored and protected. As always, I look forward to seeing you out and about, enjoying your community and your life in White Springs.

Walter McKenzie

386-303-1394

lifeinwhitesprings@gmail.com

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