I have been invited to join Diane Ludwig of the Little Kanawha Area Development Corporation (LKADC) to take part in “Walk West Virginia in a Day” program at the 2009 New River Gorge Bridge Day in Fayetteville October 17.
Diane’s organization represents Calhoun and Wirt County, and with a limited budget for hand-outs and presentations, Diane has asked Two-Lane Livin’ to help represent businesses in the area and provide past issues of our magazine to represent Central West Virginia.
We don’t really have any past issues from the last six months, since we reached 100% readership for those issues, but we do have some from our first year-and-a-half (when we only had a 95% readership level) filled with information that never expires.
So, Two-Lane Livin’ is headed to a four-lane celebration.
I have never been to Bridge Day. The thought of the large crowd has, in the past, been enough for me to say, “I think I’ll pass.” Diane has never been there either. She’s afraid of heights.
Aren’t we a pair to head to Bridge Day? <giggle>
Of course, we won’t be on the bridge. We’ll be set up on the approach to the bridge, which I assume, is the four-lane highway leading to it. We also had to get security clearance to be there, so I’m assuming it’s a crowd-controlled situation.
Still, for this country mouse, it’s a big deal, and a great opportunity to introduce more people to the columnists in Two-Lane Livin’ Magazine.
While we do deliver to Nicholas County, we don’t quite reach into Fayetteville. We don’t have enough copies as it is, and the “theories” that readers are converting to online media just don’t seem to be happening with us. Traffic to our online edition is one-eighth of our print readership level, and the demand is for print copies, not for online expansion.
At this time.
My hope, in introducing print copies to those outside our region, is to increase our online readership. Of course, more print edition subscribers would help us reach that goal of meeting requirements for bulk-mail rates for our subscribers. And, obviously, it would be nice to make connections with more businesses that would want to promote and advertise with us in order to reach our 38,000-plus readers in Central West Virginia.
Of course, the reason I’m there is to represent our region, and our counties. We have columnists from Wirt, Calhoun, Gilmer, Jackson, Upshur, Braxton, Clay, Roane and Lewis Counties. We distribute to 16 counties, and we reach right up to – but do not cross – the New River Gorge Bridge.
For Two-Lane Livin’, Bridge Day is a door to a new frontier, a chance for us to reach outside our region. A chance to make personal connections to build our online community.
And who knows? I may even have some fun.
This is my second year as a member of the Rush Run CEOS. (Formerly known as Extension Homemakers, but some upper level folks at WVU changed the name a few years ago to Community Education Outreach Services.)
Anyway, no matter what you call it, it is the ONLY club, organization, group, etc. that I belong to. I know. It’s “good business” to belong to trade associations, chambers, EDA’s… But I don’t. I belong to the one club in my county that actually serves my community within my county. And believe me, boys and girls, this one club is enough to keep me busy enough.
You see, our club isn’t afraid of work. We clean cemeteries, 2 miles of road in Adopt-A-Highway, plant flower beds, and collect whatever any other club, organization, non-profit, educational outlet, health service… needs us to collect. I save canceled stamps, toilet paper and paper towell rolls, box tops, used greeting cards…. I gather kitchen gadgets, lotions, powder, games, magazines, stuffed toys….
Every meeting, I have a mile-long list of things I must remember for that month’s donations, plus, the item of the month for the food pantry, plus, my change for the breast cancer collection barrel, my notebook, my club book, my book list, my recycling pounds for the month, my volunteer hours for the month….
My point here is: most often, our club is working on something, or talking about working on something. But, once or twice a year, we go on a Club Trip.
This summer’s trip was to Durbin, WV, where we rode the Durbin Rocket. There’s a story about the Durbin Rocket, and it’s included in this month’s issue of Two-Lane Livin’ (which is being delivered this week in print, and will be updated online Saturday. The article isn’t up yet, or I’d provide you a link, but now you’ll just have to wait and check it out after Sunday).
So, I’m basically posting these photos about the Durbin Rocket, and you’ll have to wait until after Sunday to read the article online….
I love this photo. Look at it. That engine is 99 years old. In fact, Engine #3 is one of the rarest steam locomotives in existence. One of three Climax-geared locomotives, the 55-ton steam engine was built in 1910.
Doesn’t look a day over 29 does she?
There she is, waiting at the station. The lady to the right, in the black and white outfit, is my mom. Most of the folks at the depot are Rush Run CEOS Club members.
Now, here’s a photo that just wouldn’t work in black and white newsprint. It’s the fire-hot glow fo the coal in the broiler in comparison to the charcoal surroundings of the engine’s cabin that makes it great.
One the return trip, we stop on a bridge, to refill the Engine’s broiler with 1200 gallons of water from the creek below.
Sure, it’s a mellow, two-hour train ride. But, I can now say I’ve ridden a train pulled by one of the rarest steam engines in existence.
Now, don’t you want to learn more about The Durbin Rocket and Engine #3?
Tune in to Two-Lane Livin’ online, next week, to read all about it!
I was sitting on the porch yesterday talking to my niece on the phone, when it occurred to me that the buzzing noise behind me would have to be coming from a vary large bumble bee.
I turned to be face-to-face with the first hummingbird of the season.
And last night, as I sat on the porch and watched the rain, I listened to the whipporwhils for the first time this year, while Daisy killed and ate one of those big brown beetles I hate so much.
I think “porch sittin’” should be considered an activity – an art. Not too many people in this workd can stand to sit and rock for long. They get jittery, restless, bored.
It isn’t everyone who can just sit, and rock back and forth, and watch the world around them. The birdsong, and feathered creatures flitting here and there; the spring insects rising from the wet ground following a spring rainstorm; steam rising from the lake, swirling and swirling, up until it becomes one of the clouds.
Porch sitting is a skill. Try it. Try sitting still for fifteen minutes, twenty, thirty. No phone, no distractions, no reading or knitting or hand-held games. Just sit, and rock and observe.
Not many can do it — sitting still for 20 minutes.
It’s harder than you think.
The view from the back porch.
I’m finally sorting through all of our digital photos for the past year, and have begun posting “slide show stories” on our travel writers site at wvtravelers.com.
I use URL forwarding for that site, so here’s a direct link to the Audra On Ice page:
Frank and I have planned our first camping trip of 2007, and we’re off on April 14 to our favorite place — Audra State Park.
It’s the opening of WV State Parks’ camping season.
I have already pitched an article to Wonderful WV — which they have accepted the pitch — “The Four Seasons of Audra.”
We’ve been visiting Audra with some regularity for almost three years now, and this is where we go to just — breathe.
Sure, we hike, camp, trek along the banks of the river. But Audra is where we go to just stare at the campfire and listen to the forest.
Four weekends from now — we’ll be there.