30 Ways You Know You Grew Up In Small Town North Carolina

Growing up in a small town is quite different from big city living. From the time you’re little everyone knows your name and who you are. It’s guaranteed no one goes unseen in a small town, but that’s not always a good thing. Here are 30 signs you grew up in small town, NC.

1. You remember your grandparents naming off landmarks, and sometimes the stories behind them, as you road in the car. “Well, there’s the Walmar(k), there’s the Jefferson house, you know he went mad a couple years back, daughter fled the town.” Usually you were just a kid but you still think back to this and laugh, and sometimes, you find yourself saying, “well, there’s the Bojangles.” (like it was going to go somewhere.)

2. You’ve had some of the best meals of your life from a window, and no, not fast food windows.

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3. High School football was everything!

4. Walmart.

5. You met in parking lots to congregate, sometimes you just stayed in the parking lot and never went anywhere. Also, you knew which parking lot to drive by to make sure you wouldn’t run into anyone you were avoiding. Speaking of, you identified people by their cars, like “oh, we just passed Bobby.” You also waved at everyone. everyone.

6. You weren’t scared to leave your doors unlocked.

7. Funerals, births, birthdays, and family events meant a casserole or covered dish delivered to your door by neighbors and friends.


8. Neighbors supported each other, especially during hard times.

9. If there was a wreck in town, you’d drive past the gas station, where they would tow the car, to see the damage.

10. You knew everything, about everyone, always. And there was always that one person who somehow ALWAYS knew all the gossip.

11. You could tell whose truck or car it was by the sound of their exhaust.

12. You never turned up your nose to collard greens, cause if you did mama might just spank you! (vinegar makes it better)


13. You did your summer swimming in a swimming hole, or the ‘crick.’

14. When you caught lightning bugs you’d put them in a mason jar or old jam jar.

15. You couldn’t go anywhere without seeing someone you knew.

16. ‘Traffic jams’ involved a tractor on the road.


17. Somehow your feet were always muddy or dirty, mainly during summer.

18. You knew which back roads were perfect for racing, and also the rotation of the sheriffs in-town and when they’d be on what road and when they wouldn’t.

19. Speaking of, you’ve talked your way out of a speeding ticket, but your parents, and the whole town, still found out how fast you were going.

20. If you didn’t grow up near the beach, family vacations might mean going to White Lake, another lake, or camping. If you did take a beach vacation, the first smell of salt in the air, or sight of water (even if it was a puddle) meant you were getting close (even if you still had two hours).

21. You’ve been on a field trip to a tobacco factory.


22. You can identify each piece of China in a set.

23. Sunday’s were for church, and after church, eating lunch at Grandma’s.

24. You never needed much to be happy, a long road, simple joys, summer evenings, a sweet tea, a nice front porch, good friends, and good family.

25. You’ve tipped a cow.

26. You thought of Raleigh as the ‘big city.’

27. You tell people where you’re from but follow that up with the closest metropolitan area to your town.

28. Your town had its own special festival or parade each year.


29. You wouldn’t trade your upbringing for anything, and if you’ve moved to a big city sometimes you still miss the sense of community you had growing up. It’s rare to find that these days.

30. You’re laughing as you read this list.

What are some things you would add about growing up in small town NC? Tell us in the comments!