Beautifying Polk County

Published 8:00 am Friday, January 11, 2019

Polk Appearance Commission presents beautification awards

COLUMBUS — For the eighth year in a row, the Polk County Appearance Commission awarded four people and businesses with the 2018 Beautification Awards. 

The winners for 2018 were the Historic Saluda Train Depot, the Tryon Theatre, the Sunny View Clubhouse and the GreenLife Inn at the Mimosa.

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The Polk County Board of Commissioners met Monday and heard from appearance commission chair Joe Cooper, who presented the awards.

Cooper began with the Historic Train Depot, with renovations starting in 2015 when a nonprofit was established.

“Built in 1903, the train does not stop there anymore, but many people do, and the depot has become an important force for the vitality of the city,” Cooper said.

The building was restored and, in 2018, more than 10,000 visitors signed the guest registry. Judy Ward and Mark Ray accepted the award for the depot.

The next award went to the Lane family for the restoration of the Tryon Theatre, located in downtown Tryon.

The theatre opened in 1932, with Cooper saying it was renovated previously in 1937.

“This 2018 extensive restoration was done in a way that maintains its historical significance and, at the same time, offers modern technology and convenience,” Cooper said. “Many of the improvements are inside. It is comfortable and attractive. I encourage you to go see for yourself and enjoy an evening at the movie.”

Gayle and Scott Lane accepted the award for the theatre.

The Sunny View Clubhouse, founded in 1932, was awarded for its renovations.

“Many of the recent renovations were done by teacher and contractor Keith Rimer and some of his carpentry students at Polk County High School,” Cooper said.

Local residents and a grant from the Polk County Community Foundation funded the renovations.

Accepting the award for the Sunny View Clubhouse were Laddy Edwards and Jessica Raines. 

The GreenLife Inn at the Mimosa was also awarded for its 2018 renovations. The 1903 inn was revived after a fire in 1916 and for decades functioned as an active inn, but was unused for the last few years.

“It has now been reborn as a contemporary inn with modern conveniences in an historic building,” Cooper said. “If you have driven on Highway 108 between Columbus and Tryon in what we call Lynn, you have noticed that the wonderful old white inn with white columns has been receiving TLC, with additional care being given to the landscaping and grounds. The new owners say that the new name, GreenLife Inn at the Mimosa, pays homage to both the history and tradition of the Mimosa and the idea of rebirth and a fresh start.”

GreenLife Inn at the Mimosa owners Mary and Kevin Parker accepted the award.