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Whether you have lived here for your entire life, or if you are planning your first vacation, Macon County has a variety of exciting adventures waiting for just about everybody this summer.

To help you plan your next adventure, here are the top 10 things to do in Macon County, as submitted by Macon County News readers.

1) Strap on your hiking boots.
With hundred of miles of hiking trails within Macon County, there is a trail for every skill level. From hosting miles of the Appalachian Trail as well as the Bartram Trail, there are hikes of all skill levels and lengths that meander through all areas of the county and take you on a foot tour of majestic mountain peaks and cascading waterfalls.

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Organization offers help for domestic violence victims.

One in four women will experience domestic violence and one in six women will experience sexual assault in their lifetime. Men are victims of nearly 3 million physical assaults in the United States and 1 in 33 are victims of sexual assault. And the most alarming statistic of them all, most domestic and sexual violence incidents are never reported.

Twenty-five years ago, an organization was formed in Macon County to end domestic violence. With LaVerne Rohrer as the first program director, and guided by a board of 16 directors, REACH of Macon County was established in 1990.

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With just two road officers, Macon County Animal Control officers responded to just shy of 1,000 calls in 2014. On average, Macon County's Animal Control receives about 2.5 calls a day ranging from everything from stray animal complaints, to puppy mills, from dog/cat bites, to nuisance animals.

John Hook, director of the county's animal control department oversees the two road deputies and the one shelter attendant employed with the county. He operates with an annual budget of $261,282, which quickly gets spent on shelter related expenses such as animal food, veterinarian bills, and gas.

When asked what the greatest problem Hook sees within his department, he said a lot of it involves educating the public on the importance of being a responsible pet owner.

"Trying to satisfy the general public on their animal problems," Hook said ss one of his department's greatest challenges. "And educating the public on the importance of spay/neuter."

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One of Franklin's longest standing traditions is set to return to Main Street this summer, and bring with it a heritage and culture like no other. The Taste of Scotland Festival is slated for Father's Day weekend – as always – and according to a presentation to the Franklin Tourism Development Authority from event organizer Doug Morton on Monday, is expected to be bigger than ever.

Morton spoke to the TDA to request $2,500 to advertise the festival in national publications. During his presentation, he informed board members that the event draws an estimated crowd of 3,000 people, and in the last two years that he has been in charge, has garnered attendance from people all over the United States.

"This is very important to our community and it is important that we keep the Taste of Scotland alive," said Morton. "Being the 18th year this year, it is one of the longest running Scottish Festivals in the country."

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