Building communities we love

June 5th, 2024
By Guest Contributors

This is an excerpt from the Spring/Summer 2024 issue of the Upstate Advocate, Upstate Forever's twice-yearly publication. To read a digital copy of the complete publication, please click here.

Lacey Keigley | Founder, Travelers Rest Here

When a job opportunity seventeen years ago had our family’s Suburban heading to South Carolina from Virginia, I started my research of Travelers Rest online before the big move.

A dial up connection and a lack of information kept me curious and required all of my research to be done in person — after we arrived. This turned out to be perfect, allowing me to shop locally and to meet business owners firsthand, to talk to my neighbors and to move me right along to caring deeply about these new friends in my new community.

Travelers Rest really is a best-of-all-worlds sort of community. The base of the Blue Ridge Mountains provides sweeping views and lovely valleys. You can drive to Asheville and Greenville for bigger city needs. You actually know your neighbors and you see them at the market and at weekend events and at the local bookstore.

My experiences here led me to create what I had been looking for a decade earlier — an online presence to connect the folks who lived in TR and the folks who worked in TR and the folks who visited TR: Travelers Rest Here (TRH).

Central to my job at TRH is fostering a love of community for our local residents. This is a delight to me. I find that kindness always comes back to you and I have watched that play out in myriad ways with TRH readers.

When a small business succeeds, when a community member is in need, when a wonderful local event takes place, we’re on the same team. We get to be one another’s cheerleaders. When one of us succeeds, we all succeed. When the high school cross country team makes it to the state finals, the entire town lines up along Main Street to cheer them on.

Photo courtesy of the City of Travelers Rest

That’s what makes Travelers Rest so special. And that’s where I want to live. That’s where I want to raise my kids. That’s where I want to see a business flourish, where my neighbors are my friends and my friends are looking out for one another.

Another magical part of living here? Afternoon drives to Jones Gap. A morning trek to see the sunrise at Caesars Head. The proximity of uniquely beautiful state parks is a gift I do not take for granted. And although I could easily spend an entire weekend gawking at their beauty, these places are so close, I can fit it into my lunch break if I want to.

I also care deeply for these wild and open spaces and am keenly aware that without them, the entire Upstate would change. I’m grateful for organizations like Upstate Forever who care as deeply as I do and who are working diligently to preserve and protect what makes our area so beautiful.

Your gift to the Generations Campaign helps ensure Upstate communities like Travelers Rest retain their unique local identities, ample green space, and quality of life as our region grows.


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