Your turn

The snow caught up with me last week, so this post is staying until Friday, Feb. 19. If you would like to make a comment, click on the highlighted number next to the word "Comments" and follow the directions. Thanks to those of you who have commented so far.

Okay, so it’s February now, and winter’s kind of grim, and (frankly) I’m out of ideas for this week. Well, not completely. My idea is that I’d like to know more about who’s out there reading Trailheads (besides my mother).

At the risk of sending questions out into the blogosphere and receiving no responses at all (which will require weeks of choco-therapy), here goes.

Since its inception in August, Trailheads has included posts about programs at sites along the Pennsylvania Trails of History, some behind-the-scenes stories and sneak peeks, info on how sites are employing social media, and what are probably best characterized as miscellaneous posts (like this one).

While reader comments are always welcome (we’ve received and posted a few), this time I’m inviting (begging?) you to provide some feedback on the past months of Trailheads. What is of interest to you? What would you like to see more of? What would you like to see less of (please don’t say chocolate references)?

Comments about your favorite sites and museums on the Trails of History are also invited. This is your chance to play a direct role in Trailheads. How can you pass it up?


Anonymous said...

As someone who has blogged in a variety of venues, I have found personally that very few people actually comment/participate on a blog. But that does not mean they aren't reading.

Anonymous said...

Maybe do some posts on each specific site and what they have to offer or upcoming projects! Of course each should be accompanied by photos or video whenever possible!


Karen said...

Thanks for starting this blog. As a former PHMC intern (Daniel Boone Homestead, 1986) and a supervisor of history interns at various historic properties administered by the Commission, I enjoy reading about the sites on the Trails of History.

Does anyone know what is being done to ensure that these properties will be sufficiently funded in the future? I know that quite a few sites are in various states of closure and reduced operating hours, but I'm not sure about grass roots efforts to restore PHMC funding (I have written to my state representative and state senator, and I get the usual "these are tough economic times and we must make choices" response).

By the way, I also was a PHMC Scholar in Residence at Conrad Weiser Homestead and have visited between 1/3 to 1/2 of the properties on the Trail of History. I consider all of them to be gems that definitely need to remain open (especially to serve as outstanding ways for students to learn about our state's and nation's past).

Anonymous said...

I like the job you are doing at this site. Trailheads is interesting, funny, and informative. thank you!

Anonymous said...

Perhaps you could do features about some of the amazing people who work on the frontlines and represent not only the PHMC but the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to the visiting public?

Amy Killpatrick Fox said...

Thanks, Karen, for your advocacy for the Trails of History (and your nice comments about Trailheads). As you know, each of the PHMC sites has a friends or associates group that supports the Commonwealth’s efforts to preserve and interpret Pennsylvania’s rich heritage. A great way to be part of the grassroots effort is to contact the associates group at any site you wish to support. You can usually do this via their website (find them at, where you can at least find information there about how to contact someone by phone if not by email.

PHMC is asking the associates groups to focus their advocacy initiatives on the Keystone Recreation, Park, and Conservation Fund. More commonly referred to as the Keystone Fund, this pot of money is fed by a percentage of the state realty transfer tax. Between 1994 and 2008, the PHMC received $6 to $8 million annually to fund preservation and long term maintenance at our sites, as well as institutional planning and exhibit development. In 2009-10, our share of the Keystone Fund was $0 (allocations were made to other agencies, however). Gov. Rendell has restored $8 million in Keystone funding for PHMC in his proposed budget for 2010-11. We need to make sure it stays there.

Karen said...

Thanks for the information. I will definitely contact the Friends group at Daniel Boone Homestead. I'm also asking my students to join the Trailheads blog and to become a fan of the Trails of History on Facebook (if they haven't done so already). One of them, in fact, is hoping to be an intern at Erie Maritime Museum this summer, and I'm looking forward to visiting her since that's one of the properties I haven't seen yet.

By the way, I don't think you can see my avatar on this blog, but it's a picture of me working at Daniel Boone Homestead. I'm in the background making candles (not a fun job on a 100 degree day in July--we certainly couldn't sell those candles at the gift shop), with the Bertolet Log House in the foreground (I just happened to appear in the photo when the photographer took a picture of the house).

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