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Glenville, West Virginia
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November 18, 2004     The Glenville Democrat
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November 18, 2004
 

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IThe ,lace ould ,iting J imes -ring, ding )ver, er to start oran, :lren vlost ddie cater t high .~ Erie best- der in 0,000 fillion m 100 ~rcent ;busi- ed by o live ey do crates urant. es ork is # : done years aittee, lid. "I lent to ~, for- Advi- ar Ill- cipi in Glenville Democrat~Pathfinder Thursday, Nov. 18, 2004 -- Page Business progress, Christmas crafts and public education Business, crafts and education seem to be coming up more often these days in Gilmer County, but not without controversy. Business After 6 On last Thursday evening, a small group of business people gathered at the Best West- ern Glenville Inn fore Chili Cook-Off Con- test which was the feature of November's "Business After 6" social hour. Although all of Gilmer County's business, civic and church leaders were encouraged to attend, only a couple of handfuls of people actually attended this gala social in the hotel's Conference Room. I'll unequivocally state that they missed a tasty chili meal, not to mention a lot of good conversations. Where are all of our community leaders in Gilmer County when they're invited out to a party? Don't any business people want to make money or club officers to find new members? Hotel manager, Steve Robinette, who has been the sole promoter of the Business After 6 Social Hour for local leaders in business and community affairs, got a second place ribbon for his crockpot of chili. Ironically, he was bettered only by one of his managers. Jason Frymier. Of course, all of those Tanner Frymiers are great cooks. Others in attendance were the following: Larry and Susan Chapman, Stan and Paula Mazzagotte, Marierva Smith, Jason Eager, Dr. Louis Manley, Donna Waddell, Carlton Cook and Bob Ashworth, the latter two be- ing hotel visitors from distant Chapmanville (Logan County). Donna Waddell, executive director of the Family Resource Network, tells me that a rocky road may be ahead for her local agency, if the state government pushes forward with a three percent budget cut for all FRNs next fiscal year. Hopefully, new governor. Joe Manchin, won't abandon the locally-con- trolled FRNs, because ours operates the town's community center and tourist infor- mation bureau on East Main Street between the post office and bank. Also, she announces that the Community Showcase center's crafters will be sponsor- ing a Christmas Open House on Thurs., Dec. 2. Talking about open houses, the Rec Center's Holiday House is slated to take place in the Rec Center's Dining Hall on Fri., Dec. 3. No longer will they be in the old Poor Farm Building, but in the larger dining facil- ity, Jason relays. I had a great conversation with visitor Carlton Cook, who is about to get Steve Robinette, the Best Western's manager, as a son-in-law. We spoke about southern West Virginia and the Cincinnati Redlegs. He re- members the old Crosley Field, like myself, but hasn't seen a game yet in the new Great American Ballpark. I'm not too keen on it, because I've been spoiled by Pittsburgh's PNC Park which has it all -- a clear view of the city's beautiful s~yline and the riverboats travelling by. We also brought back the memories of the old Reds stars like Joe [ The Corcoran Column By David H. Corcoran Publisher-Editor Nuxhall, Wally Post, Gus Bell and the Big Klu. Such pleasant exchanges are a general happening at the Business After 6 Social Hours. That's why more area leaders ought to take advantage of the free food and fellow- ship! For further information about the next Business After 6, call Steve at the hotel: 462- 5511. A Christmas Open House Recently when getting the newspaper printed in Spencer, the friendly Barbara Ice in Hughes Jewelry jarred me by asking, "Did you see our Santa Claus in the front window?" I confessed that I hadn't. Since this is not the Christmas season, I wasn't expecting to see Santa, especially prior to that community's annual Black Walnut Festival in mid-Octo- ber. At about the same time, the Gilmer County Rec Center had three Christmas shopping- type commercial shows going on simulta- neously at the first of this month. So, thinking about choosing just the right Christmas gift for the right person is something which is being done earlier and earlier every year by many Gilmer Countians and others as well. Not to be left behind, Deloris Furr, of Log Cabin Crafts in Letter Gap, has scheduled her Christmas Open House from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. on Sat., Nov. 27. The gala annual occasion will feature a doo~ prize and refreshments. The rare fact about this crafts sale is that about all of the Christmas handicrafted prod- ucts are made by the talented Deloris herself. Her daughters, Lisa Law and Lori Radcliff, also help out their mother whenever possible, although morn, they say, always shoulders most of the burden these days. "Mom has great novel gift ideas," states Lisa. Since Fri., Nov. 26-- the day after Thanks- giving -- is the biggest shopping day of the year, the clever Deloris always sets Saturday as her Christmas Open House Day, so as not to be in competition with other merchants or the distant malls. Moreover, you can't miss the Furr's charm- ing and historic log cabin on SR 33/119 at Letter Gap which is on the left side of the highway coming from Glenville. She opened the shop in 1989, but makes the most of her promotions at Christmastide. At other times, she, as a retiree, may or may not be open. Call her ahead at 462=8341 ;'if you wafft to'see her high quality craft products after working hours. But, if at all possible, attend her special shopper's appreciation day on Sat., Nov. 27. See related advertisement on page 5. Rec Center update Jason Eager, the new manager of the Gilmer County Recreation Center, recently expressed "fear" of me at a County Commission meet- ing. I'm really not too bad of a guy when you get to know me. It was just Jason's initial delay in contacting the newspaper in order to inform us of the activities at the Mineral Road facil- ity that may have concerned us at the rocky transition period of his start-up. Unlike some agency heads, Jason now regu- larly comes to the County Commission meet- ings to report on the progress being made at the Rec Center. This is all good, especially when he announces that the center will be operating at full capacity for any specific weekend. For example, it helped drive up the crowds when he informed us that three different commercial events would be taking place out there on the weekend of November 5-7. The 8th Annual Something Old, Something New Antiques & Crafts Show -- Gilmer County's home-grown crafts show-- would take place in the Rec Center's Barn that weekend. Add into the mix Phil Cunningham's popu- lar Knife & Gun Show and you'll fill that dining hall with scores of vendors who "buy, sell or swap" guns, knives and related gad- gets. Also, we understand that Bill Simmons, of Cox's Mills, demonstrated his colorful cornmeal-making machinery for the Rec Center's visitors that weekend. Finally, Stan and Paula Mazzagotte, the new jewelers in Glenville, tell me that their GoldMakers 2nd Annual Holiday Jewelry Sale went extremely well in Shawnee Hall. In addition to setting up a large display area with their wares, they also make custom jewelry. So, whenever three major commercial events can be arranged in one location, like the Rec Center, for the same weekend, the general shopping public is benefited by this wide variety, not to mention the other Gilmer County businesses that sold products and services to the many out-of-county visitors who needed them. And, best of all for Jason Eager under those circumstances, he doesn't have to worry about my being critical of him. Gilmer's master wine-maker Well, it appears that Alan and Elaine Wolfe have done the impossible again! Their growing Jones Cabin Run Vineyards have won 12 medals in regional, national and international competitions for their 2003-vin- tage wines. The couple has accomplished this significant feat for the last several years in a row, which is an outstanding achievement. Indeed, as Alan tells me, wihe-making is hard to do, especially because good wines come from good grapes. So, if frosts or blights adversely injure the grapes, the resulting wines will not be so tasty or relaxing. , Although Alan maintains that his wines are., more impressive tO wine=makers than to the general public, I'd disagree. Unfortunately, his is a small business', like most in Gilmer County -- thereby not getting as much pub- Continued on page 5 [ Musings of an Oldtimer Glenville's phone service was ahead of By Fran Schmetzer, Glenville Correspondent Telephone service in Gilmer County was far ahead of ours in Hanover County, Vir- ginia. We had no phone at the farm until long after I had left home to work. When my Glenville grandmother (America Frances Myers) died my senior year in college (1943), I called a neighbor who lived a mile past the store to go tell Dad. (I had that number memorized he- cause it was also a spotting station for report- , ing aircraft movements during World War II.) Even in Glenville, long distance calls were Supposed to happen only in dire emergencies Calling just to visit was something our family Just did not do. After my brother, Bill, was other rural areas dischargedfromtheArmyAirForce, hehitch- an emergency to call her at the hospital, just hiked to the west coast, taking temporary jobs for a chance to talk. along the way. He and I figured a way to keep I don't remember what year telephone wires in touch, reached the farm, perhaps by the late 1940s. Bill would place a person-to-person call to Mother never did make calls she considered me, and I would prevaricate with the re- unnecessary. As she advanced in years, Iwent sponse, "She is not here just now." Then, the home about once a month, preceding the visit Operator would tell me to what city to ref,,rn with a written note, not a phone call. By the the call. Sometimes she would ~i tot a time my sister Olive lived on the farm, she phone number where he could be reached, and always asked me to call her when I got back I could hear him say something like, "I am on from the visit, so she would know I was safe. the road. I'll have to try again from ." As times have changed, I am committed to If he really wanted to talk, he would place a keeping in touch with an answering machine collect call, and I would accept charges, and acell phone. There are weekly phone calls For about a decade, Mother was hospital- with some members of the family and daily e- ized every two years for treatment of her mails with others. arthritis, and I would pretend it was enough of How nice! : i ) Dear Editor: As I sit here listening to my recording of the last Gilmer County Commission meeting (No- Vember 4, 2004) I cannot help but wonder, "What part of NO do our Commissioners not Understand?,, Commissioner Chapman stated "the GCEDA would have to meet soon and let the Commission know what their intentions are. It all boils down to either they will be able to accumulate $30,000.00 in local investment to .be a match to get the $30,000.00 from the state m a reasonable amount of time, or maybe it is t~me the Commission take a stab at it. We have the authority.,, After a comment, Commis- sioner Chapman stated "sure, we have to wait to s~e what they do." my take on this is, ifGCEDA can't come up with $30,000.00 to get the state's matching $30,000.00 then the Commission plans to exercise its "authority by placing economic deve!opment under the Giimer County Com- mlsston and using OUR tax dollars for the part of NO ... match. I stated to the Commission that we accountable to the public for job retention and have already seen what the voters of the job development. It doesn't work here and it county think about supporting GCEDA. The doesn't work anywhere else. You need a 'paid voters have said "NO" not one time but two person' that is accountable, but I still say, times! To me, the election results are quite while we had a paid director, regardless of clear. GCEDA was rejected both times! And what you thought of him, the business climate now it appears that your County Commission was growing. After his departure, we have is going to create a new organization under the nothing but closures. Does one matter to the Commission to do what the GCEDA had other? I am sure you say 'no' but I say 'yes.' stated they were doing. The commission will We had a restaurant close, two restaurants not have to run a levy to get the matching close, because the one at the hotel just closed funds for the state money because they el- (comment by editor, the Moose) What's the ready have control of our tax dollars. Again, third one? The Moose and the parts store, they are going against the will of Gilmer Auto Value." County voters. I then asked the question, where was your During the economic development discus- growth?Ifyou'retalkingabouttheBestWest- sion, Mr. Chapman made the following state- ern motel, that is about the only thing. Mr. ment. "When we had a director, regardless of Chapman responded "don't change what I howbusyyouthoughthewasorwasn't, when said. I said we had a growing business eli- we had a director the business climate in this mate. We had businesses going into business, county was growing. The fact is after we lost not going out of business, that's what I said. a full-time director, and don't kid yourself, you can't have a bunch of volunteers being Continued on page 5 Attention Readers: Our 'Letters to the Editor' Policy We are in need of more letters to the editor. Feel free to send them in to US'l~cS~,remember our policy on the letters. newspapers have long been the sounding boards for political, personal and a I "' P triotic views and this paper is no exception. Ke.atwe to writing responses, please keep in mind our Editorial Policy: we wm accept letters on a space available basis only and they will be subject to the Editor's scrutiny as to content relative to libel, good taste and timelin~ss.A good length is generally one to one-and-a-half standard typing pages oout~le spaced Th t ftheSen|orEd|torw|ll befinal ' " . edecis'on o " " " . Letters must be signed in order to be published - e-mailed letters must include a ~phone number where your identity can he verified, but you may still he required to sign the letter via snail mail. Deadlines for letters are Mondays at 10 a.m. for that week's paper. After I0 a.m., they can be accepted for that week as paid.advertisements. However, it would appear for free in a future edition, Also, for writers who consistently send in Letters week after week, these messages are constantly evaluated as to content and to purpose, so they may be considered as an advertisement, especially if they are weekly, lengthy, and repeats of previous letters. Nevertheless, you will he contacted if the latter is the ease and will he charged only our regular advertising rate. For more information, contact either Dave Corcoran, Sr., Charlene or Rebecca at 304-462-7309. / i Congratulations to the Folk Festival's Country Store Museum's volunteers & progress In Gilmer County, like in the other small surrounding counties, progress generally takes place rather slowly, if not, at times, combatively. By contrast, all is good and peaceful with the quantum jump progress being planned for the West Virginia State Folk Festival's Country Store Museum. The facility's sturdy and vigorous volunteers are eyeing not only to repaint and add an air-conditioning system to the museum's interior but also to build an educational center next to the North Court Street non-profit unit in Glenville. More significantly, all of these construction initiatives are scheduled to begin as early as next spring. That will be a lot of progress happening in only one year's time, because it was just this last spring when Dave and Judy Brown, a far-sighted retired couple from Troy, took over as the historic structure's coordinating volunteers and curators. And, if they, along with the many other volunteers who planned the improvements, get their way, the Country Store Museum will become a bright new, living museum --one that will complement the Folk Festival's objectives throughout the whole year with instruc- tional programs in folklore, dance, music, crafts and other assorted educational programs for adults and young people. At the recent public announcement, a new spirit and positive can-do attitude permeated the aged museum's main hall. Folk Festival President Ginny Hawker was gracious and adamant in thanking the Browns for their energy, ideas, and hard work inrevitalizing the museum. Likewise, Frances Myers Schmetzer, who had kept the museum open at peak times over the past several years, saw her efforts finally bearing fruit in these newly announced initiatives. As we understand it, the historical fibre and charm of the Country Store Museum will be retained, but a new, architecturally and historically-compatible building will be constructed on the vacant lot between the museum and city hall. The new building will offer the general public the type of modern space and conveniences needed in order to take classes in folklore, dance, music, crafts and other related subjects. In addition, it will have a meeting room large enough to seat all of the volunteers or the general public for special programs. The recent Museum Volunteers' Appreciation Social Hour was very well attended, and they were very deserving of praise for making physical improvements to the museum to- date, offering handicrafts instruction on the weekends, and keeping the museum open for the general public on a regular basis during this past tourist season. Dave and Judy Brown and all of the other volunteers are truly "Folks Who Shine" -- lighting up our county with some well-thought-out ideas and a feasible construction program that will further enhance the beautification of the downtown. For their vision and elbow grease, all of these Folk Festival Museum volunteers deserve the gratitude of the entire Gilmer County community and a small financial contribution from everyone to get the fund-raising phase underway. DHC, Sr., Publisher.Editor Normantown waterline coming ASAP After four years of planning, the Gilmer County Public Service District has been able to sail the long-awaited, $4 million Normantown-Stumptown-Cedar Creek waterline project through the stormy waters of the state's Public Service Commission (PSC) in Charleston. And, after reaching the sight of land, Gilmer's PSD's captain, Bill Stalnaker, could make the announcement that everyone has been waiting on for so long. At the county-wide public works agency's Mon. evening, Nov. 8 meeting, Chairman Stalnaker confirmed, "We have the oral notice (from the PSC) that we have the Certificate (of Necessity)," estimating that this major rural waterline extension project will be advertised for bidding within a one-month period. Moreover, he, the other PSD members (Ed Talbott and Nelson Smith), General Manager Brenda Lawson and the agency's staff deserve much credit for their hard work and never- say-die attitude in pressing our local people's case before the PSC. In addition, all of those residents and businesses which have signed-on to the waterline and given their fight-of- way waivers along the route are also to be commended. Chairman Stalnaker foresees that the major construction push will begin next spring, but before that, a contractor will be awarded a winning bid, be able to set.up operations in preparation for the major work, and get underway in full force during next spring's building season. This news is all good and a welcome announcement for not only western Gilmer County's affected residents and businesses but also all of the rest of the county. Commu- nities can only progress and grow, if government offers a comprehensive system of public works. And, this waterline is a major first step for economic growth, in that newcomers to this county are looking for available land to build on and to have a minimum of modern conveniences, like p~e and reliable water ........... Congratulations, C.hairman Bill Stalnaker and the PSD, for this major enhancement to Gilmer County! ........ DHC, Sr, Kudos to the federal prison for honoring its vets at a Veterans Day luncheon! Officials of the Federal Correctional Facility-Gilmer (FCI-G) are to be commended for honoring their staff members who are veterans, especially those who recently served 'in Operation Iraqi Freedom and have returned. New Warden Kevin J. Wendt wanted to commend those staff members who have war- time service, so he arranged a special luncheon on Wed. morning, Nov. 10 at the prison for them. Normally, the prison doesn't crow about what it does for this locality, but to honor our veterans was an initiative which was truly worth publicizing. From all of us Gilmer Countians, congratulations, veterans of FCI-G whom ever you are! (We editors will be happy to print the names and services of these veterans, if supplied that information by the prison's officials. In that way, Gilmer County's general public can give even more credit where the credit is supremely well-deserved.) DHC, Sr.