The Road To Better Health, Way to Wellville merge, Live Healthy Spartanburg

Will Kreznick

The Mary Black Rail Trail, a two-mile trail just south of Downtown Spartanburg, is often busy with runners, walkers, and bicyclists, giving locals the chance to enjoy the outdoors. It provides a place for residents to exercise safely and get to know Spartanburg. Cynthia and Jamie Olley of Spartanburg often […]

The Mary Black Rail Trail, a two-mile trail just south of Downtown Spartanburg, is often busy with runners, walkers, and bicyclists, giving locals the chance to enjoy the outdoors. It provides a place for residents to exercise safely and get to know Spartanburg.

Cynthia and Jamie Olley of Spartanburg often walk the Rail Trail while their daughter takes swimming lessons at the YMCA of Greater Spartanburg.

“While she’s swimming, we walk,” Cynthia said.

Spartanburg residents may have some new health and wellness initiatives on the horizon thanks to the announcement of a new collaborative of the Mary Black Foundation and Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System.

The two organizations recently announced the creation of Live Healthy Spartanburg. Its mission is to achieve health equity and improve health outcomes for all Spartanburg County residents.

Alexa Hudson of Spartanburg takes a jog on the Mary Black Foundation Rail Trail near Union Street on April 7, 2021.

Live Health Spartanburg represents the merging of two existing, longstanding local health collaboratives – The Road To Better Health and Spartanburg’s Way to Wellville – into one unified initiative designed to address the Spartanburg community’s health needs.  

More:Spartanburg’s downtown pushing east with Mary Black Rail Trail extension, new development

“In 2015, we were delighted that Spartanburg was chosen as one of the five communities across the country to be a part of ‘The Way to Wellville initiative,” Kathy Dunleavy, former President and CEO of the Mary Black Foundation said. “Spartanburg is very unique in our ability to work together for the good of the community. Blending Way to Wellville and Road To Better Health into Live Healthy Spartanburg is a perfect next step in our goal of striving for health equity for all of our residents.”

Mary Black Foundation Rail Trail near Union Street on April 7, 2021.

Spartanburg resident Alexa Hudson enjoys the outdoor spaces Spartanburg offers and hopes to see healthier food options come from this new initiative.

“Having spaces for people to be able to go out and exercise is really important,” Hudson said. “And I would enjoy a boutique salad chain or other good, healthy restaurants.”

More healthy food options are also something the Olley’s would like to see in Spartanburg.

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