The Rotary Club of Franklin, Read2Me, and The Macon County News recently held an Essay Contest at our local schools. We will be featuring the winning stories on our blog, we think it’s the perfect way to see Franklin – “Through the Eyes of Our Youth.”
The first essay is from Elizabeth Brenner – 1st Place Winner and 5th Grade Student at Mountain View Intermediate
Franklin, a Wonderful Place to Grow Up
I can’t imagine calling another place home. Franklin, NC is dear to me for so many reasons. When I wake up in the morning, I am greeted by the beauty of the mountains and the world coming to life as the sun peaks over the mountains creating a sky the color of cotton candy. There is a feeling of peace and safety in my small town. Located in the Smoky Mountains, one can enjoy the breathtaking scenes as the trees change from one season to the next. In the fall, the leaves change to vibrant reds, oranges and yellows. The snow in the winter months covers the trees with a white blanket. Spring welcomes the arrival of new growth, greenery and the birth of young animals including black bear and deer. Continuing to bloom throughout the summer, the mountain laurel, rhododendrons and wild flowers crate a tranquil scenery for many hikers. you can hear the birds chirping, the mountain streams as they run and toss about the bees buzzing. It is truly a great place to be.
Franklin offers a variety of places to enjoy the beauty of the mountains. There are multiple parks, the Little Tennessee River Greenway for riding bikes or walking, and countless nature trails with hidden waterfalls. In the summer, one can enjoy canoeing, hiking, and rafting. My family enjoys water skiing and swimming at nearby lakes. During the winter, there is a fitness center for indoor swimming and exercise. Nearby, one can snow tube, snow ski and snowboard.
There is always a festival being celebrated in downtown Franklin. My favorite is the Fall Festival with the annual pumpkin roll and costume contest. Kids can trick-or-treat at the downtown stores. Also, I enjoy the Winter Wonderland, Appalachian Trail Celebration and Scottish Highland Festival. There are multiple parades each year including a Veteran’s Day Parade and Christmas Parade.
Because Franklin is located in the gem capital of the world, there are multiple gem shows yearly. Also, there are countless locations and gem mines for mining. People of all ages can enjoy the excitement of finding a ruby, emerald or sapphire.
There is no shortage of sources of entertainment in Franklin. One can always visit the Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts to catch a concert, play, or special event. I take dance from Betsy’s School of Dance and enjoy participating in programs such as the Nutcracker and the yearly dance recital. A local theater group called the Overlook Company puts on many plays throughout the year.
Although Franklin is located within two hours of Asheville, NC and downtown Atlanta, GA, you can find anything you need in the local store. There are many specialty shops downtown and within the area. One of my favorite things to do is to read. I enjoy shopping at Books Unlimited and Dalton’s Christian Bookstore. It’s always nice to grab a book, sit outside in the fresh air and read.
I love camping with my family and being able to surround myself with sights and sounds of the mountains. However, if you are visiting for vacation, business or a sporting event, there are hotels, campgrounds and cabins in the area.
Franklin is a loving community. There is an abundance of churches that work together to help meet the needs of the community. They set up and support programs such as CareNet. The Macon County School system strives to create a safe, clean and positive environment for students to meet their potential. The teachers and staff are supportive and encouraging.
I love Franklin for many reasons. I love the beauty of the mountains, the unlimited outdoor activities, the warmhearted feeling of the small town, and the people that make up my community. I love that my family has chosen to live here. It is a wonderful place to grow up!