On behalf of Preserving York, I’d like to wish all of our readers and supporters a very Happy New Year. We hope 2015 will be filled with warmth, happiness, and prosperity for the entire community.
Even though Preserving York as a whole was quiet during 2014 due to personal challenges faced by the organizer (that’s me), the group continued to grow and support has certainly flourished. Our Facebook discussion group now has over 1,500 members and our “official” Facebook page is nearing 300 “likes”. For the record, the discussion group is where you will find a wealth of historic York County information and photographs from members. Our FB page is our official presence and where news and related items are featured. We feel it’s important to not only join the group, but also LIKE our page.
Community Gatherings and Tours
Preserving York has always focused on building community through the use of York County history, and 2015 will certainly be no different. We hope to make this our most successful year ever.
The first tour we ever organized was at the historic Rex/Laurel Fire House in the city of York. Greg Halpin, Deputy Fire Chief of the York City Fire Department was a wealth of information and always entertains. Guests were fascinated by the intricate features of the property, many that you would never expect to see in such a setting. We’ll be working with Greg to set up another tour, which has been requested quite often.
Who can forget the great picnic and tour held at Indian Steps Museum? The community enjoyed a potluck lunch where everyone brought food items to share, followed by a tour of the unique Native-American themed museum. Some members shared pieces of York County history found in their collection and overall, everyone had a great time. We’ve received many requests for another picnic on this site, and we’ll planning one this year. There is a fee that we will work on raising for the use of the pavilion.
There are some new tours and events we have in mind, such as a tour of historic York city churches. We’d like to secure the use of a chartered bus to take guests to and from each site, so hopefully we can make that happen. This could be a fun event where we not only learn about the beautiful churches in York, but also enjoy a meal as a group in the downtown area.
Another exciting function we’re working on is one that would allow community members to share their York County collections with the public. It would be interested to see the types of items people have acquired over the years. Guest speakers could also be present to help educate the community about local history.
Events and Fundraising
It would be great if a group like ours could be operated without worrying about finances and funding. Unfortunately, this isn’t a perfect world. Even though we have very few overhead costs besides fees for web space and domain name renewals, there are still some other financial aspects that need to be handled.
As mentioned in our October, 2014 story, “Preserving York and its Revival – A Story of Determination“, there are projects and events we would like to organize that require funding. We also have aspirations of acquiring a high-quality digital recorder for oral histories and a DSLR camera. Both would allow us to document the rich history of York County before we lose important stories and landmarks.
The anonymous note shown above was sent to the Friends of the Hoke House with a donation of $2.00. The widow who sent it felt that even though she couldn’t offer much, it would go to a good cause. She was right. A lot of people donating a little can quickly add up and take a group like the FOHH and even Preserving York a long way.
How do we plan to raise funds?
- Preserving York Fundraising Yard Sale: York Countians are passionate about yard sales, and if you’ve ever stopped by an area flea market, there are hoards of people there looking for a good deal or an item for their collection. We’re asking the community to donate items that we can sell at our fundraising yard sale this which will help support Preserving York and it’s future plans. Volunteers will also be needed to help with the sale.
- 100 Pounds for Preservation: This idea came to us as we watched college students working to raise money for their fundraiser. We’d like to place collection jars at area businesses where patrons can drop some loose change (paper money or checks work too) to help support our efforts. We won’t cash it in until we collect 100 pounds of loose change, which will be our goal. We feel this is a simple and fun way to raise funds, with an exciting finale after we see what we’ve raised.
- Business donors and sponsors: We would also like to find area businesses with a love for York County and York City to step forward and become one of our sponsors. In return for their generosity, we are working on ways to bring their business to the attention of the community.
- Individual donors: The community has always been our main area of financial support, and we’re extremely thankful for their kindness. They’ve been there for us in the past, and we know they’ll be there for us in the future.
- Crowdfunding: There have been extremely successful online campaigns to raise funds where there were thousands of dollars donated by people across the country. Maybe this is something we could try.
A New Year to Preserve History
Preserving York has always been about the preservation of York County history, and we mean ALL aspects of its history. We’re determined to document properties and stories. We’re passionate about the preservation of area photographs, memorabilia, and ephemera. There is literally nothing in our minds that’s too small or trivial to save and preserve.
As an example, we were looking through the remnants of a local barn recently and found a discarded milk container from a local dairy, circa 1970s or so. It was in bad shape – nothing special – but to us it was worth saving.
Do we go overboard? Perhaps. Is it worth it in the long run? Absolutely.
If you are an individual and would like to make a donation or a business who would like to become a sponsor, I urge you to contact us. We can’t do it alone. We need your help and support.
Happy New Year to the entire York County community, and to those no longer living in the area. Let’s work together to make this a great year for all.
Founder, Preserving York