South Congaree, SC (Paul Kirby) – Citizens of the Town of South Congaree came together Saturday morning to spruce up the town’s major thoroughfares to make the town look better and foster civic pride. In several hours, the small team cut grass, trimmed back ditch banks, and picked up litter discarded by careless motorists. By the end of the morning, they had completed what they set out to do, make the town look better.
Much of this was organized by businessmen Teddy Huff and Bobby Jeffcoat. This pair are known for their love of the community and the lengths they’ll go to make it a nicer place to live. Last week, the pair saw a small ad on the town’s social media pages asking if anyone was interested in helping to do some outdoor cleanup. They especially wanted to focus on Main Street (Hwy. 302) that runs through the heart of South Congaree and Ramblin Road.
The town’s lawn care maintenance contract is currently out for bid. Because of the pandemic, town leaders are hesitant to enter a new contract as all non-essential spending has been put on hold. Governments everywhere are tightening their belts and watching their spending in their 2020/2021 budgets. As the COVID-19 hit and lockdowns started, some small businesses’ sales plummeted. Towns like South Congaree receive much of their income from business license fees. Those are figured on the based on in-town businesses’ gross sales. As the council considered how to move forward on lawn care maintenance, the grass was getting tall, litter was accumulating, and the ditch banks were growing thick with weeds.
Saturday morning at about 6:00 a.m., most of the volunteers gathered at Steve’s Deli on Main to enjoy breakfast. About an hour later, they moved over to the town square where other volunteers had gathered. The men unloaded several lawn mowers, string trimmers, and a handful of trash grabbers and buckets. The ladies were already donning safety vests and work gloves. The team quickly went to work to could get as much done as possible before it got too hot to comfortably work. After several hours the small group had done a great job, and the town’s streets looked pristine.
Teddy Huff said before they started, “These are the type of things neighbors should do for their neighbors. It’s the way all of us here were raised.” The town’s Mayor Danny Jones also said, “I’m so proud of this little group. They really do care about what this town looks like and were willing to come help, even early on a Saturday morning. The town looks better, and people can hold their heads high knowing they live in a community where neighbors and friends still care about their community and how others see it.”
Besides Teddy Huff and Bobby Jeffcoat helping, Mayor Danny Jones and his wife Susan pitched in. Councilmember Mechele Mabry was also there working alongside Wally Shangle and the town’s Event’s Coordinator Sylvia Corley Drennon. Gary Shull and Janice Lawson also lent a helping hand too.
The mayor, speaking on behalf of the town said, “I can’t say how much we as a town thank these people for their labors. It was work, but everyone seemed to enjoy just getting together and doing something good for this place we all call home.”