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May 5, 2016     Clinch Valley Times
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May 5, 2016
 

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Page 2 CLINCH VALLEY TIMES St. Paul, Va. Thursday, May 5, 2016 Of shoes..and ships..and sealing wax.. by Youn Gregory A very special day Reprinted from May 17, 2007 Saint Paul Tomorrow's second Clinch River Sprint was staged on Saturday at the Oxbow Lake Park, with a total of 46 registrants. Two had to drop out eventual- ly-----one failed to bring some of his equipment, and the second had a bicycle accident (fortunately without seri- ous injury) during that part of the triathlon event. The Sprint, for those who haven't been following the details, is one of four events in the Mountain Empire Challenge, a triathlon event which includes running, kayaking and bicycling. Each event (one is held in Marion in April; two in Bristol later this month) is dif- ferent, with the course for each designed by the spon- sors. Usually, each event has a beneficiary--in the case of the Clinch River Sprint, Team Estonoa at Saint Paul High School received what funds were not required for prizes and equipment for the races. Just to give you an idea of what the participants are up against, the run por- tion of the triathlon is three miles, the kayaking event is one and a half miles) two laps around the Oxbow Lake), and the bicycle portion is ten and one-half miles, which is two laps on the Super Hill Loop Trail plus a finish around the lake. I got to see elements of all three activ- ities this year, and I couldn't get over the beauty of the colorful kayaking event. The day was made even more special by the pres- ence of our Guest of Honor, Anne Cowan. You may have read about her in our March 1 issue when I explained her Great Adventure--a trip she began March 9 with twenty-seven other women, all over fifty, on bicycles. They started their trek in San Diego, California, and fifty-eight days later (which included eight rest days), they pulled into St. Augustine, Florida, complete with a police escort to take them to the state park where their journey officially ended, and where their family members awaited them. Mrs. Cowan was one of only three of the twenty-eight who rode every inch of the way without have to take advantage of rid- ing in the van which went along to carry luggage and be of assistance, in case of emergencies. She also took all the side trips which were offered on the "rest" days. The point of her participation was to raise money for the Tri- Cities Affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure and the Wellmont Hospice House. So far, over $36,000 has resulted! St. Paul Tomorrow was unanimous in its decision to have her as our Guest of Honor on Saturday, but since she had been home in Bristol only since the Sunday before, we doubted that she'd be able to come. We sent an invitation on March 7--and the next day, she called and accepted! She, her husband Dr. Ben Cowan, and her father-in-law, also Dr. Cowan, were all there with us, and were an absolute delight. They knew many of the competitors, and met a lot of the St. Paul Tomorrow members and other Sprint volunteers, so they had lots of conversation. After we had had lunch, and when most all the bicycle riders were "in," Mrs. Cowan was introduced to the crowd as our Guest of Honor and an Outstanding Athlete. She and the two Dr. Cowans were each presented with a Sprint t-shirt and she was given a Sprint medal. The major presentation, however, was a contribution for her two charities. I think she liked that one the most! It's so difficult to name all of the people whose hard work made Saturday's event such a huge success. I mentioned lunch--Sue Blevins was the chief (and only) cook, responsible for making the huge amount of delec, table pasta (I can't remember its name but it was very good), and mountain of garlic toast. Dessert was vari- ous kinds of fresh fruit and drinks were also provided. Since most of the Sprint participants bring their fami- lies, including children--and two brought their very well-behaved dogs (on leashes, of course) each partici- pant, each family member, each volunteer and each guest was provided lunch--some of the athletes com- mented that they weren't used to being treated to lunch at these events! All in all, lunch was provided for one hundred plus-a-few people! And while all this was going on, Charlie Engle and The Big Red Rug provided great entertainment! Bob Harrison, chairman of the event, expressed his and all the volunteers' thanks to Town employees Charlie, Bobby and Johnny, as well as the St. Paul Police for all they did to make the event what it was! Frank Kilgore and his Mountain Heritage group were also instrumental in making everything work so well. To ensure that medical assistance was close by just in case it was needed, Allan Howell, Sr., Sonia Myles, Mike Colley and John Glovier, all representing Beacon of Life Ambulance Service were on hand, with several stationed along the routes of the events. Their help was enormous! Team Estonoa's Travis Stanley and Jason Haga also provided lots of assistance. St. Paul Tomorrow and other volunteers included Bob Harrison, already mentioned, and his wife Suzy; Bill and Lou Ann Wallace; Georgeanna and Bob Morrison; Jim Short; Frank and Connie Molinary; Kyle Fletcher; Terri Ann Hill; Rayola and Everett Bise; Mark Harrison; Patsy Phillips; Josh Homer and Ann, Allen and Peyton Gregory. Although I've checked and checked, I've probably left a name out--if I did, it was totally inadvertent, since everybody who was there was an important cog in the machinery of the Sprint! We had had early weather reports that Saturday morning might bring some rain, and were we ever relieved that none actually showed up! Neither did we have the 80-degree temperatures that are so pleasant under normal circumstances, but are miserable for ath- letes who are working as hard as these did in the three events. It was cool and overcast--just about perfect for the kinds of activities that the Sprint requires of the mn- ners/kayakers/bikers. Really not a spectator sport, the Sprint was nevertheless an amazing event. It embodies a St. Paul event with the other three regional triathlon activities; it brought probably close to seventy people to St. Paul, many of whom probably had never been here before and it gave the Town a chance to show off the kind of hospitality that we offer here. What a great day! Three coal heritage bus tours offered in 2016 The St. Paul Main Street organization will offer three coal heritage bus tours in 2016. Travelers will hear stories of life in the coalfields and see fascinating rock forma- tions and beautiful native plants. Tour dates are June 3, August 7, and October 1. All tours begin and end at the gate of A.R. Matthews Park on the banks of the Clinch River in St. Paul, VA. The cost per person is $35.00 and includes lunch. For detailed information, visit the Main Street web- site at www.stpaulmain- street.org. Each bus tour begins with a downtown tour of St. Paul and a stop at the Wetlands Estonoa Center. Other stops include the Coal Miners' Memorial in Clinchco and the Coal and Railroad Museum in Dante. In the Town of Haysi travelers will take a walk along the junction of Russell Fork and McClure Rivers and Prater Creek, and learn about adventure opportunities. The final stop will be the Breaks Interstate Park, nicknamed "The Grand Canyon of the South." In the Park, guests will have lunch and a guided tour of the park. The inaugural bus tour takes place as part of the Clinch River Days festival in June. The August tour will feature a gospel singing at one of the stops. In October, featured events in Haysi and the Breaks Interstate Park stop include apple butter and molasses making, as well as music and crafts. These tours are not handicapped-accessible. For more information, e m a i 1 stpaulmainstreet@ gmail.c om or call 276-395-0685. Tree Assistance Program (TAP) sign-up Orchardists and nursery tree growers who experi- ence losses from natural disasters during calendar year 2016 must submit a TAP application either 90 calendar days after the dis- aster event or the date when the loss is apparent. TAP was authorized by the Agricultural Act of 2014 as a permanent disaster pro- gram. TAP provides finan- cial assistance to qualify- ing orchardists and nursery tree growers to replant or rehabilitate eligible trees, bushes and vines damaged by natural disasters. Eligible tree types include trees, bushes or vines that produce an annual crop for commer- cial purposes. Nursery trees include ornamental, fruit, nut and Christmas trees that are produced for commercial sale. Trees used for pulp or timber are ineligible: To qualify for TAP, orchardists must suffer a qualifying tree, bush or vine loss in excess of 15 percent mortality from an eligible natural disaster. The eligible trees, bushes or vines must have been owned when the natural disaster occurred; howev- er, eligible growers are not required to own the land on which the eligible trees, bushes and vines were planted. If the TAP application is approved, the eligible trees, bushes and vines must be replaced within 12 months from the date the application is approved. The cumulative total quan- tity of acres planted to trees, bushes or vines, for which a producer can receive TAP payments, cannot exceed 500 acres annually. It's Getting er to Govern, And It's Not Just Politicians' Fault by Lee H. Hamilton We may not know who our next President is going to be, but here's one thing that's almost certain: he or she will take office with roughly half of the elec- torate unhappy and mis- trustful. The notion that the President speaks for a broad coalition of Americans who are willing to set aside their differ- ences on behalf of a com- pelling new vision for the country? It's vanished. I've spent a lot of time pondering where it went, and though I still haven't found an answer, I do know this: it's not only Washington's -- or even the political class's -- fault. Let's start with a lament I hear frequently about this year's crop of presidential candidates: "Is this the best we can do?" I used to believe that the popular argument that the best among us do not seek polit- ical office was wrong -- that there were plenty of standout Americans who went into politics. And there are. But there are also a lot of talented people -- the kind who could lead us beyond our tired political discourse -- who take a look at politics and turn the other way. They don't want to spend their waking hours grubbing for donations. They don't want to put their families through the attacks and vitriol that so often show up in political campaigns now. They believe they have better ways of spending their time than subjecting themselves and everyone they know to the kind of scrutiny that has become part and parcel of political life. I've known a lot of very good people in politics. They were motivated by a true interest in improving the country, were fair- minded, respected other points of view, were skill- ful consensus-builders, and took the time to develop genuine friendships across the political divide. They saw politics as a competi- tion of ideas, not a mean- spirited clash of ideologies. I see less of this today. Many politicians seem genuinely not to like one DON'T BE IN ROOT DENTIAL!! Come to the grand opening of" the Mountain Heritage Museum & Gallery in St. Paul, Virginia. iVlay 7,10 AM'4 PM. See Hundreds of artifacts from coal mining, logging, railroading, farming, the Civil War, Native Americans and Appalachian natural history. View dozens of pictures and pdnts about these subjects and more, including the largest UMWA histodc display south of Washington, D.C! Also gaze at color photos of the great outdoors of Southwe~ Virginia, the most biologically diverse native ecosystem in the Northern Hemisphere. Local musicians and artists will be on hand as well including welt known musician Rich Kirby & Company @ 1 PM performing coal mining and other regional ballads. We will have CD recordings by Rich for sate along with publications by local authors including Joe Tennis, Frank Kilgore's regional postcard book and Ed Wolfe's Norfolk & Southern: Clinch Valley Line. WHEN: Grand Opening, Saturday, May 7, from 10-4 (Normal hours will be 10-4 Friday & Saturday) WHERE: At the Kilgore Law firm on 16542 Russell Street, beside Trupoint Bank & the St. Paul Post Office. Just follow the signs and come see your history. For safety and security purposes children must be accompanied and supervised by an adult. ADMISSION: Free, but donations are appreciated. Call 276-762-7500 for more information. another. Backed all too often by their constituents and contributors, they dis- trust the other party's mem- bers -- and see a victory by the other party as a threat to the well-being of the nation. This is a departure from the past, and it's not a healthy one. There was a time when the parties played a significant role in the system by serving to build consensus. They were collections of diverse constituencies that had developed the capacity to meld disparate interests together -- not always har- moniously, but usually effectively. They helped build a unity of effort in the government, as did a vari- ety of public and private organizations -- such as unions, charitable institu- tions and the like. This was vital: we don't have many consensus- building mechanisms in our political culture. But a lot of groups that helped do this are weaker now than they were. Which is a shame in a year like this, when voters are angry and distrustful. Much of this, I believe, stems from economic inse- curity. Incomes remain stagnant, and many of the jobs being created are low- wage jobs. A lot of Americans have lost confi- dence that their children will have a better life than they had. This doesn't mean that fear of terrorism and a gen- eral feeling that society is heading in the wrong direc- tion don't matter this year. Nor does it mean that there aren't plenty of people who are reasonably satisfied with their lives, and who recognize that the U.S., especially in comparison with other countries, is doing reasonably well. But overall, economic malaise seems to be front and cen- ter in voters' minds. This may help explain why voters this year seem not to have much appetite for the substance and com- plexity of policy. Many of them have responded enthusiastically to candi- dates who lay out a straightforward vision but don't bother much with the details of policy. And a lot of voters seem to relish the clashes that this year's campaigning has produced, and are uninterested in talk of finding common ground. It's a campaign year, of course, so a certain amount of this is to be expected. But if the voters' surly CLINCH VALLEY TIMES DEADLINES: EDITORIAL copy (anniversaries, birthdays, weddings, calendar items, press releases, etc,) 3 p,m. Monday ADVERTISING (Classified and display) 12 noon Monday mood and mistrust carry over after November, it's going to be very hard for the next President -- and politicians in general -- to govern effectively. Lee Hamilton is a Senior Advisor for the Indiana University Center on Representative Government; a Distinguished Scholar, IU School of Global and International Studies; and a Professor of Practice, IU School of Public and Environmental Affairs. He was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for 34 years. Clinch Valley Times MEMBER VIRGINIA PRESS ASSOCLaxTtON Published weekly in St. Paul, VA 2A283, by the CLINCH VALLEY PUBLISHING CO., INC. The Clinch Valley Times serves the four-cotmty area of Wise, Russell, Dickenson and Scott, with offices and plant located in the CLINCH VALLEY TIMES bttilding, 16541 Russell Street. Periodicals postage is paid at the ?ost Office in St. Paul, VA 24283 Alien Gregory Editor/Adv. Susan Trent Ads,:/Graphics ANNUAL SUBSCRIFFIONS: Iza advance: $28.50 in Wise and Russell Counties; $30.00 in other 24-zip-codes; elsewhere $32.50. POSTMASTER: send address changes to: Clinch Valley Times, EO. Box 817, St. Paul, VA 24283 SINGLE COPY - 50c Classified Advertising: mini- mttm charge $6.00 forup to 20 words, in advance; 25e per word after 20 words. Display Advert- ising rates on application Periodicals publication Post ISSN: 767600