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Ivan Gillis
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Blairsville, GA -- Is on the North Caroline border about 90 miles from Atlanta with a town population of 670 and county (Union) of 19,000.  It is rich in outdoor activities--swimming, boating, fishing, and rafting.  A 4,784 trail takes one to the tallest mountain in GA.  At Neels Gap the Georgia-to-Maine Appalachian Trail passes through a breezeway at the Mountain-Crossing/Walasi-Yi Center.


Housing costs are in the $15,000-200,000 range.


For further information, contact:


Blue Ridge, GA -- Of course is in the Blue Ridge Mountains and has clean, clear lakes, rivers and trout streams.  It is only a 90-minute drive from the Atlanta Metro area. There is a daily roundtrip through the mountains on the Blue Ridge Scenic Railways.


Water front homes start at $200,000.


For further information, contact:


Fannin County Chamber of Commerce





Bryson City, NC -- Many retirees move to this small mountain town (1,411) for the natural beauty, small town living, and the low low crime rate.  Altho, it seems remote it is close to Asheville, Knoxville, and Atlanta are less 140 miles away.

Activities include, riding the historic Great Smoky Mountains Railroad, whitewater rafting on the Nantahala River, and bicycling the southern end of the Blue Ridge Parkway. A Cherokee reservation is nearby.


Many homes are available in the $85,000 range.


For further information, contact:


Swain County Chamber of Commerce


Franklin NC--Is best know as the "gem capital of the world."   One can hunt for rubies, sapphires, garnets, and quartz in a dozen different mints.  The Gem and Mineral Society meets at the Gem and Mineral Museum.


Franklin is also the county seat of Macom County which at least half of is The Nantahala National Forest.  It also houses the only Scottish tartans museum outside of Scotland.


Homes are available for as low as $85,000.


For further information, contact:


Franklin Chamber of Commerce

452 Porter St.

Franklin, NC 28734



Morganton, NC -- Is a foothill town between Hickory and Asheville, off I-40.  There are 4 ski resorts nearby.  Older adults use the Morganton's Senior Center and continuing education classes at Western Piedmont Community College.


Housing includes golf villas, lakefront, and mountain view homes starting at less than $100,000.


For further information, contact:


Burke County Chamber of Commerce


Rutherfordton, NC--Has mild year around climate and is close to several major highways, including I-40.  The privately owned Bechtel Mint produces the nations first gold coins.  Homes start at just over $100,000.

For further information contact:


Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce


Sparta, NC -- This mountain town (1800) is the state's largest producer of Christmas trees. Originally a commercial center for surrounding farmers, it is now considered the best-kept secret of the western part of the state. Two major events take place in Sparta, The Mountain Heritage Festival in September, and the Choose and Cut Christmas Tree season in November and December.

Plus there is easy access to out-door recreation such as the Blue Ridge Parkway and Yadkin Valley wine trails.


Homes start at $75,000.


For further information, contact:


Waynesville, NC -- Is located near I-40 between Asheville and Knoxville.  It is the headquarters for Folkmoot USA International Festival.  The Pisgah National Forest and The Great Smoky National Park are close by.  Continuing education is available via Haywood Community College and Western Carolina University.


Homes are available for less than $100,000.


For further information, contact:


Haywood Count Chamber of Commerce




Anderson, SC -- Contains the state's oldest cotton factory, and has also been on the cutting edge of technology including the first transmission of hydroelectric power. There are clubs for folk dancing, bird watching, singing, genealogy, and many other interests. It is easily accessible to Greenville/Spartanburg, Asheville, Charlotte, and Atlanta.  It is also close to many out door recreation areas, including the Blue Ridge Mountains.


Homes start at $85,000 in town.


For further information, contact:


Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce


Clemson, SC -- Is the Home of Clemson University, which includes the South Carolina Botanical Gardens.  The Blue Ridge Mountains are a short drive away; Clemson U. offers a variety of educational and recreational activities.   


Home started in the $135,000 range.


For further information, contact:


Pendleton, SC -- The entire town is on the National Register of Historic Places, plus 5 close by historic sites--Astabulat Plantation, Montpelier, The Old Stone Church, The Retreat, and Woodburn Plantation.  Continuing education is offered via Tri-County Technical College and nearby Clemson University.


Homes can be found at just over $75,000.


For further information, contact:


Seneca, SC -- Is nestled in the foothills of the Bill Ridge Mountains and is surrounded by scenic vistas, with year around mild climate. It is close to four state parks and three lakes. Seneca is also close to Metro Atlanta and Charlotte, as well as Anderson, Greenville, Spartanburg and well know Clemson University.

Churches and civic clubs offer community involvement.


Homes start at less than $100,000.


For further information, contact:






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