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Colbert County Extension Coordinator Danny McWilliams and community leaders partnered with Auburn University to create a community development plan, especially one that will chart a path for western Colbert County’s future. Western Colbert County includes the communities of Pride, Barton, Red Rock and Riverton-Rose Trail. The group’s vision was to develop a plan in Cherokee and western Colbert County that builds on local assets, addresses community needs and mobilizes local leaders.

For nearly five months, residents of West Colbert County have been meeting with Dr. Joe Sumners and Mike Easterwood of the Economic Community Development Institute at Auburn University to develop a long-term strategic plan for their county. The plan has finally reached a point where it is ready to be implemented.

According to McWilliams, one of the main goals of the planning effort was to help this part of the county reach its full potential from an economic and quality of life perspective and to move forward in an effort to further unify Colbert County.

On April 29, at 6 p.m., Sumners and Easterwood will present the completed plan to the community at Barton First Baptist Church. Mayor Sheldon Day of Thomasville will share the success story of Thomasville, Ala.

“The citizens of the county recognize that innovation and change are two key elements to a community’s success. Everyone is encouraged to attend and support the efforts of the citizens of West Colbert County,” said McWilliams. A dinner will also be provided. Please RSVP by email to no later than Wednesday, April 24, or call (256) 386-8571 to reserve your place.