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City of Barnwell, a finalist in the inaugural SC Great Community Competition

Early in January of this year, the South Carolina Department of Commerce sent out an invitation to apply for a new grant competition,  They called it the South Carolina Great Community Competition.  The competition's purpose was to award communities that had successfully completed a project after January 2019, that had had a positive impact on their community and to incentivize the communities to consider "what's next."  It was only open to Tier III or IV counties and to municipalities with a population of 7,000 or fewer according to the 2020 Census.  Projects could be large or small and could include a permanent physical improvement, a temporary demonstration that brought long-term change, or a new innovative program or service.   The application turn-around was very short, but the City of Barnwell applied, showcasing our updated amenities at Fuller Park.   We were among the three finalists, which also included City of Abbeville and Town of Lane.   As part of the competition, we were invited to give a presentation at the Rural Summit in Beaufort during the first Monday-Tuesday of March.  Even though, Barnwell was not the overall winner of the competition (Congratulations to Town of Lane), we received a grant award for up to $50,000 for another project.  It was an exciting day.  Attached to this article is the video that was put together for the presentation.  A BIG thanks goes out to Bob Snead and the Palmetto Innovations Center for preparing this video and the interviews.  Thank you also to the community for your help in sending photos from the park.  We are proud of this accomplishment and look forward to planning for more amenities at Fuller Park.