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OUR VIEW: Perfect time of year to enjoy The Thread

Well before any concrete was poured, The Thread was simply an idea for a healthier, happier LaGrange and Troup County.

That wasn’t that long ago. To add a time perspective, just five years ago, there wasn’t a walking trail locally. Sure, there were sidewalks, but nothing close to what LaGrange currently has in the Thread, which is a large, two-lane pathway for bicyclists, runners and walkers to get some exercise. In many spots, the Thread is off the roadway, allowing parents a little comfort if they decide to let their little ones walk or ride their bike instead of riding in a stroller.

A new portion, through the Hillside community, will run from LaGrange College baseball field to the Callaway Foundation building. Four segments — Granger Park, Eastside Park, LaGrange College and Country Club — have already been completed in just a few years. The progress is incredible.

On days when the weather is good — and even when it’s not — the Thread is a popular place. People of all walks of life, people who might never have met, pass each other every day with a friendly smile and wave.

We’ve written before that it’s the sort of amenity that people want to live near, and we think that becomes truer every time a new section opens. The growth continues too, as the Thread is expected to be close to 30 miles when completed.

And thanks to a partnership with Emory, starting next year, road races will even take place on The Thread.

The trail is helping make our community healthier, as its giving people a place to get outside and get some exercise. According to the Center for Disease Control website, the prevalence of obesity in the United States was 42.4% in 2017-2018. That number has skyrocketed from 30.5% in 1999-2000.

Being overweight can lead to heart disease, stroke, type two diabetes and types of cancer. All in all, as the CDC puts it, many of these issues are “leading causes of preventable, premature death.”

Thanks to SPLOST funding and community partnerships, the Thread is helping play a role in changing those numbers for Troup County.

We’ve heard people say that they’ve never gone to The Thread or seldom go. Our question is why?

Right now, sunlight lasts until about 8:30 at night. We encourage you to take advantage. Get outside and get some exercise on an amenity that most other cities our size don’t have.

We’re thankful for The Thread, and thankful to all who support it. We hope to see you walking, running or biking on the trail soon.