I am Justin Coleman. I’m a lifelong resident of Lowndes County Ga. who’s embarked on a quest that has morphed into something a tad larger than the simple daily health routine it started out as.
I am walking every foot, of every street, of every community, in Lowndes County.
In the spirit of developing a healthy habit, I began a daily walk of the 4.8 mile loop around my rural neighborhood outside of Hahira. After more than a year, the routine became a bit same-ish, so I began driving to “new” nearby areas to walk, just for a change of scenery. In time the tedium of same sights, ad nauseam, crept in again. So I figured, why not broaden my range and add some structure to the exploration and I set out to walk every street in my own little hamlet of Hahira. At five miles a day, it didn’t take long (two weeks) and I was back to my familiar country walking loop. In the interim, I read a number of books about walking and the wander lust soon returned. It was then that the harebrained idea to walk the streets of every incorporated community in our fair county was hatched. After walking only one other satellite city the scope expanded to include every Lowndes community, incorporated -and- unincorporated. The quest had begun
I studied local maps in the Web based Valor GIS system and discovered there are more communities in Lowndes County than I realized. There are fourteen in total. Five of them are incorporated municipalities, including: Hahira, Lake Park, Dasher, Remerton, and our regional version of a megalopolis – Valdosta. The unincorporated communities range from residential enclaves with county provincial names -to- more bonafide-like communities that never incorporated, including: Twin Lakes, Bemiss, Naylor, Minneola, Clyattville, Tillman/Stone Creek, Moody, Kinderlou/Ousley, and Barrets. I have completed the walk in twelve of these and only the outer environs of Moody. (Being allowed access inside Moody AFB is, not surprisingly, proving impossible). The joy experienced from walking these communities was unexpected. It lends a familiarity with each one thats like being shrunk to microscopic size in order to walk on the fingertips of a giant, to get a feel for his prints. Seeing ones community, completely from a pedestrian level, gives understanding of it that’s incomparable.
And now, I embark upon Valdosta. Although only an educated guess, covering the “Big City” will probably consume about 18 months of my time, with a daily range of five to eight miles. This scope gave rise to yet another idea (there I go again) that perhaps can present a fundraiser opportunity for a worthy cause. And so, I’ve selected the Suwannee RiverKeeper as the beneficiary of my endeavor. If you also believe the work the RiverKeeper does for the preservation and enjoyment of our vital water ecosystem (local and regional) is a worthy cause, I’ve provided a means to donate to Suwannee RiverKeeper by sponsoring the mileage of my daily trek, or just to make a single donation to their important work. Any contribution is appreciated beyond words.
Thank you for visiting walkaroundlowndes.com. I hope you find it interesting enough to revisit often to view my progress.
Lets go for a walk,