Smith: Thomasville a ‘must’ to visit

Published 5:52 pm Thursday, August 31, 2017

It has been hot here lately, like 103 degrees, which would melt a tall glass of ice water quicker than a covey of quail can thunder up in a nanosecond, either making a hunter’s day or leaving him with dogged exasperation.

That October sensation allows for the natives to endure Old Sol’s wrath in August for the glory of the fall hunting season, when temperatures are kindly and the environment is burnished by the harvest moon, and the proliferation of quail birds make Thomasville a must place to be in the last quarter of the year.

There are two places in Georgia that I find unretreating reasons to visit, Thomasville and St. Simons, even when the temperatures are lamentable. I would like to own real estate in both Thomasville and St. Simons.  Come to think of it, having a place to call home in Athens ain’t too shabby.

A speaking request brought me here recently, and I decided to stay an extra day to enjoy Thomasville’s sparkling hospitality.

I like Thomasville’s laidback lifestyle.  There seems to be more trendy restaurants  downtown here than there are in the Buckhead district or Atlanta.

Kevin’s Sporting Goods and TJ Callaway’s can outfit you to bust a quail or dress you up with an outdoor look that makes you fit to be the centerpiece of a Norman Rockwell painting.

The plantation life enthralls constant visitors.  Playing the Glen Arven Country Club course is a treat that President Dwight D. Eisenhower gave high priority when he occupied the oval office.

Thomasville is more than quail country, clean streets and historic homes—it is also a city of roses.  There are more than a thousand rose bushes in the city, which beckons rose enthusiasts the last week in April.  Like the quail plantations attracting elite hunters from international addresses, Thomasville’s rose festival is a must for rose advocates from around the world.

A couple of years ago, USA Today sponsored a thing called “10 Best List, Reader’s Choice.”  Thomasville got high marks “as the second best historic small town.”

If this is like hearing the same song again, surely you agree that redundancy has redeeming value when you talk about places like Thomasville.

A native of Wrightsville, Ga., Smith is a past chairman of the State of Georgia Sports Hall of Fame and was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1997.