Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

Clayton Contest & Concert

Posted May 29, 2008
Updated May 30, 2008

It’s slogan time again and contest time. The subject is one of the fastest growing towns in the South. Yes, times are changing in Clayton. This once sleepy Johnston County town that relied on tobacco, turpentine and textiles to fuel its economy is now a more vibrant and diverse community with new industries and a rapidly expanding population and tax base.

Give us your best slogan or description for Clayton, NC and win a couple of prizes.

A real positive for the community is its ability so far to hold on to its small town and historic charm in spite of galloping growth. A great source of community pride downtown is The Clayton Center. This beautifully intimate performing arts center with impeccable acoustics has been a magnet for outstanding entertainment. The town’s Harvest Festival in September is a large event attracting top notch craftsmen from across the state. Plus an arts festival in June continues to grow in popularity.

Industries on the move in Clayton include bio-pharmaceutical, financial services and furniture. Plus the local chamber of commerce is working hard to help small businesses prosper and thrive. Clayton is definitely on a community on the move. Its official slogan is “The Premier Community for Active Families.”

Give me your best brief description of Clayton and win a pair of tickets to Sunday’s concert benefitting the Clayton Historical Association and their campaign to build a history museum. I will be performing in a brand new “Tar Heel Tales and Tunes” program at 3:00P.M. in Clayton this Sunday, June 1. The concert will feature the premiere showing of my father’s  watercolors which inspired my new CD and book “Blue Ridge Reunion” to be released this fall. I will also be singing and playing songs from the new album and telling my favorite stories. Tickets are available by calling (919) 553-1737 or online at


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  • erkarts May 30, 2008

    I have never lived in Clayton, but I have worked there and have many friends that live there. Here's how I describe it:
    Clayton-Home of the future, Heart of the past.

  • owlady May 30, 2008

    I have had a tough time coming up with much. But here goes: ;-)

    Clayton: Skip the Bypass, put down some roots.

    Clayton: Still your Grandmothers hometown, only better.

  • LMRA May 29, 2008

    As they say on ESPN "I kid because I care."

    I really like Clayton. I agree - with 70 cutting right through the town, it does have a certain '2 sides of the train tracks' feel. It's unfortunate because the 'downtown' area is really nice.

    If you take what I wrote, you can apply it to any growing town. I moved to McGee's Crossroads in 2001 and it is starting to get to that point, losing the charm that originally attracted me to this area.

    Yes I'm a Northerner and Yes I'm a Yankee but I was born there. When I had the chance to choose where I wanted to live, I chose North Carolina. I like the way things are here - if I didn't I would have moved.


  • enjoytheride2011 May 29, 2008

    we do have tons of yankees

  • rrains1 May 29, 2008

    As a long-time resident of Clayton and native of Johnston/Wayne counties, I could'nt pass up a chance to tease my Northern friends here in Clayton. Clayton has changed with the influx of people moving here (particularly Northerners). Notice I didn't call them Yankees-there is a difference. Northerners are folks that move here who love and embrace the community. Yankees are folks who move here and tell everyone how much better things are up North! Thankfully, Northerners far outnumber Yankees here in Clayton. Even so, I'll still poke a little fun: Whereas,
    CARY means Containment Area for Relocated Yankees,
    CLAYTON means Cary-Like Area, Yankees too-Oh No. :)
    Y'all Come See Us,

  • enjoytheride2011 May 29, 2008

    Have you guys ever been to Clayton?
    I've lived here all my life and I love it.
    It is a nice town.
    Yes there is a lot of traffic resently, plus construction.
    Yes, we do have a Wal-Mart and soon we will have a Chick-fil-a and a mall similar to North Hills. It just might take the small-town southern charm of Clayton and through it out the window.
    Clayton is also home to Fred Smith's housing "communities".
    I hate to say it but highway 70 divides the town as would trian tracks back in the day. On one side you have the more well-off families and the other you have more medioker families. Clayton is also home to the Clayton High School Winter Percussion group who is 4th in the world and the Clayton High Colorguard that is 16th in the world.

    Clayton: Come live, succeed, celebrate, and grow with us. Clayton: The town where youth and adults are the futrue.

  • fishnett5977 May 29, 2008

    I vote for mdoodle's serious one and happy's not so serious one!!!lol

  • fishnett5977 May 29, 2008

    and to "happy" lol there is a town in Johnston county that is LEAST redneck???? If this is true then my neck of Broadslab is the HEART of redneck country!!! ;)
    Bill this is fun! Even if I dont win, I love reading the other posts!!!

  • fishnett5977 May 29, 2008

    All roads lead THROUGH Clayton :)

  • fishnett5977 May 29, 2008

    Clayton - Big city with a hometown feel!!!




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