'Small Town Podcast' creates big airwaves

'Small Town Podcast' creates big airwaves
Matt Seale, Mayor of Ocilla and Podcast Creator and Host (Source: WALB)
Matt Seale, Mayor of Ocilla and Podcast Creator and Host (Source: WALB)
Lace Futch, Atkinson County Board of Commissioners Chairman (Source: WALB)
Lace Futch, Atkinson County Board of Commissioners Chairman (Source: WALB)
Willacoochee welcome sign in Atkinson County (Source: WALB)
Willacoochee welcome sign in Atkinson County (Source: WALB)

WILLACOOCHEE, GA (WALB) - "So I'm just trying to tell the whole stories. And some of that be the struggles. A lot of the rural communities are going through some struggles," said Ocilla Mayor Matt Seale.

His goal is to share the stories of small Georgia cities.

'Small Town Podcast' is Ocilla Mayor Matt Seale's newest project.

"I'm looking for folks who have a good story," said Seale.

This marks 40-year-old Matt Seale's third year serving as Mayor of Ocilla in Irwin County.

"A lot of times, the small towns get overshadowed by the big cities," said Seale.

He's featuring Georgia cities with less than 10,000 people living there, by talking to city leaders.

"In my own small town of Ocilla we actually got a little bit of media attention, but not for the reason that you would like," said Seale.

A podcast called 'Up and Vanished' came out in 2016-- just months before investigators got a major break in the disappearance case of Tara Grinstead.

"But when you are trying to make your town marketable for people to come visit, and come live having such a highlight on a crime, doesn't really help you out," explained Seale. "So I thought what I can do, not just for Ocilla, but for other small towns."

The Georgia Municipal Association helps fund the project.

Seale's podcast takes him to different cities, like Willacoochee in Atkinson County.

That's where he met the 79-year-old Atkinson County Commission Chairman, Lace Futch.

"I was excited to be chosen to be the first one," exclaimed Futch.

At a commission meeting, Seale asked Futch if he would help get 'Small Town Podcast' started.

"I didn't even know what a podcast was! Ashley, I cannot even turn on a computer. But anyhow, Matt explained it to me and I says ok yeah, I'll be glad to do it," said Futch.

"He's got quite an array of experiences in his life so talking to him about that, Willacoochee and also some of the roles he's had in state and regional government," said Seale.

Seale wants the podcast to ignite interest into quaint South Georgia cities.

"Well, I hope that it will inform people about life in small towns. You know, and to be honest with you I love my little town," explained Futch.

And through these experiences, this small-town mayor will continue to share both the joys and struggles of small town living.

"There's so many small towns that have some historical significance that you'd never know unless you sat down and asked. And so I'm sitting down and asking and putting it out for the masses," explained Seale.

Click here to hear the two-part podcast with Lace Futch.

The next podcast is set to be released on March 5. Seale interviewed Pelham's Mayor James Eubanks.

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