The past two months have been great! I started October on vacation in the northeast. Marah and I camped and hiked throughout the beautiful fall foliage in places such as Green Mountain National Forest, Acadia National Park, and Baxter State Park. Climbing Mount Katahdin, the highest peak in Maine, was a fantastic experience. I highly recommend it to everyone who has a chance to visit Maine. Upon returning to work we had quite a few days in the field to get some things done before the weather got too cold. We were at Rices Landing to finish cleaning up the lock wall. It is now all weeded and swept up. Pt. Marion also needed some more work done at the park, so we finished up cleaning around the public docks. I was on the radio for the first time in my life with Jeff on the Buy Local Radio Show. It was a pretty nerve-wracking experience to be live on the air, but I ended up having a blast. We talked about some of the projects we completed this year and some upcoming events that were happening in our towns. There was a large amount of painting going on in October. We sanded down and painted the wooden fence and benches in Brownsville Central Park a dark red color. The RTOC crew also sanded down and started to paint the black cast iron fence at the park. Our group also painted the back of the Fredericktown borough building. It’s amazing how just a couple coats of paint can really improve a fence or the side of a building and make the whole area look better. The Pt. Marion public art project is now complete! We helped grout and clean the piece of art a couple days this month. While in Pt. Marion, we painted window displays to place in windows along the bike trail on our breaks from grouting. Our Fall Paddle on the Mon at the end of the month was a fantastic time. We had around twenty paddlers join us for our final canoe/kayak trip of the year. The trip started in Pt. Marion, we had lunch at Two Rivers Restaurant and Marina in Dilliner, and our voyage ended at the boat ramp in Greensboro. We weathered a little bit of rain and chilly weather, but all enjoyed their time out on the water. RTOC attended the Outdoor Nation Summit in Atlanta at the beginning of November. The summit consisted of several aspects including leadership training, grant writing, project planning, Leave No Trace principles, and professional development. We all had an amazing two days meeting new people and learning great tools that will be sure to benefit us in our careers in the future. After the summit, Sam, Marah, and I visited my parents in Georgia for a relaxing vacation. Later in the month, we all went climbing on the rock wall at REI in Pittsburgh. This was a superb team building experience. We spent three hours together with our fellow Trail Town corps members climbing, having fun, and getting a great workout in the process. Sam, Marah, and I attended the Water Test Interpretation Workshop put on by the Washington County Conservation District at the end of November. This presentation was very informative in teaching us how to interpret and understand the results of water testing that has been done by a lab whether for pre-gas well drilling or from routine testing of private water supplies.
December 4, 2012 •