Malone, one of Jackson County’s northern-most cities, is the kind of town where its citizens take pride in their local sports teams. The Malone High School Tigers basketball team owns five recent state championships, including 13 titles since the 1950s.
“That’s one of our big selling points when people call,” the town’s mayor said.
However, there is more to this small town. The tree-lined streets remain quiet on most Sundays, as most of the residents are “church-going folks,” reports the town‘s mayor. People enjoy the quality of life and the quiet pace.
“Everybody hunts, fishes and goes swimming. It’s just something like Americana,” the mayor said.
The town has received numerous grants recently—$300,000 toward improvements such as city parks and a future wastewater treatment plant.
It is the only municipality in Florida that’s a stone’s throw from two states—Alabama and Georgia. And it may be the only town in Florida in which the mayor met with the governor of Florida, acclaimed country music singer George Jones, and Florida State football coach Bobby Bowden, all at the same time.
It began when the mayor of Malone, a town of more than 2,000 people, emailed Florida’s governor to ask for advice on how to help his fledgling town. The governor answered him, and the mayor received the advice he needed. “It really makes you feel good because you have access to the governor,” he said.
The correspondence continued and, after more than 30 emails, the mayor orchestrated a meeting between Jones, who owns land in Jackson County, and Florida’s governor. “I found out George loved football, so I called Bobby Bowden,” he said.
So the three talked, told stories and discussed, of course, football.