June began with the crew conducting needs assessments in each of the towns. Fredericktown-Millsboro was the first, and we had a great turn out, with lots of locals very excited and brimming with ideas. We listened to everyone’s ideas and have now begun to work on projects. Our first project is an “app” for a smart phone that lists tourist sites throughout the region. I am writing descriptions and taking pictures of sites to include on the app.
I then worked on a couple of economic development projects. First was to compile a list of business resources to give out to potential business owners. Now, when someone has an idea for a business in our region, we can provide them assistance, or at least direct them to the proper source. I also assisted in writing a grant, to provide funding for a brochure about a water trail on Ten Mile Creek, PA. Finally, I attended the Chamber of Commerce meeting in Fredericktown, during which we discussed the signage program in the area, and a banner program for light poles in the downtown area.
There were also lots of good times in June. Several of us on the River Towns Crew went kayaking on Ten Mile Creek. We were guided by a local who wants to open a kayak rental business on the creek, so we also discussed ways we can help him get his business ready. A few days later, as more of a team building activity, we went whitewater rafting on the Youghiogheny River in Ohiopyle. In the end of the month, I attended the Outdoor Nation Youth Summit in New York City, where I made some great contacts and learned a lot of potential funding sources. A free pair of hiking shoes wasn’t bad either.
The month ended with a review meeting with the entire River Towns crew. We discussed what projects have been going on, and basically laid out the direction of the program for the next few months.