Tom Lewis' Resilience News addressed the effects of climate change, including rising sea levels, the slowing down of the Gulf Stream, with resultant flooding in Charleston, SC and Savannah, GA. October was the hottest month in history worldwide.
The minutes of the October meeting are available on line, with no changes or comments. Treasurer Tom Kennedy reported donations of $28.00 at that meeting, resulting in a balance of $777.-- in the bank account.
A discussion of publicity and outreach for the organization made mention of our website (sustainablepotomachighlands.com), Facebook page (Sustainable Potomac Highlands Group), articles and notices in the Hampshire Review Community Calendar. Potomac Highlands Sustainability is another Facebook page managed by Steve Martin where pertinent articles are posted. Tom Lewis pointed out that the Facebook page Eye on Romney has over 4000 followers. Vince Lombardi has developed a brochure to give out to neighbors and others to introduce the group, and help them plan for any sort of emergency. The next version could include a directory of members. Anyone who has suggestions on this should send them to Vince. Tom would like Windy Cutler to send him some of the photos she has taken at SPH events so he can add them to the website.
Pete & Judy Ashelmann talked about the farm tour they attended at the property of Forrest Pritchard in Berryville, VA. They learned much valuable information about organic farming and the raising of grass fed beef and hogs. The $25.00 fee included pot luck lunch and a copy of Pritchard's latest book.
Beth Reese talked about ways to order products from the Farmer's Daughter Market & Butcher in Capon Bridge. Prices and availability change frequently, their website is still under construction, but getting on their email list helps.
Jim Guy talked about his interest in starting a firewood co-op, but has been unsuccessful in building interest, despite a trip to Vermont to talk to a Transition group that was unsuccessfully trying to do the same thing. "Have fun" was their advice.
Several people mentioned attending the Mother Earth News Fair in PA. in September, an annual event. Plans could be made to attend as a group next year.
Vince suggested reading "Communities" quarterly magazine for good life lessons in sustainable living..
Todd Ashelmann has information about ordering of bulk foods and other supplies. Anyone interested should contact him.
Tim & Beth Reese attended the Allegheny Highlands Climate Change conference held at Blackwater Falls. MC'd by Tom Rodd, who spoke at an earlier SPH meeting, presenters included many professional speakers from agencies such as WV University, WVDNR and the National Park Service.
Discussion turned to interests and passions as basis for next years activities.
Tom Lewis - What do we accomplish as a community? He'd like to focus discussions on what we are doing to be sustainable, what are the successes, failures?
Donna Guy wants to present information on types of composting'
More information on Permaculture and food forests is desired.
Jim Guy wants to get a network started using CB radio for emergency communication.
It would be good to re-do Tom's community map exercise with another scenario, so people in the group can get to know their close neighbors.
Beth Reese would like to talk about "What's in your pantry?", what can be bartered or shared.
The book "Making Home" could be the basis for a meeting.
Sustainable Landscaping, using native plants and edibles in the yard.
Dale will send an email to the membership asking for ideas for future meetings.
Election of officers will take place at the Dec. meeting. Tom Kennedy, Treasurer, and Dorothy Kengls, Secretary are willng to serve again. Tim Reese has chosen not to serve as Co-convener because of his busy schedule. Dale Brady is willing to continue as Convener if no one else wants to do it. Nominations can be taken from the floor.
The next meeting will be on December 10 at the Health Dept. Meeting Room, Rt. 50, Augusta, WV. Doors open at 6:00 for potluck dinner with a holiday theme. The meeting is 7:00 to 9:00 pm.