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Town Council discusses Shepherdstown Farmers Market, Alternative Spring Break funding

By Staff | Feb 21, 2019

Shepherdstown Farmers Market President Natalie Friend discusses upcoming changes with the market, during the Feb. 12 Town Council meeting. Tabitha Johnston

SHEPHERDSTOWN – The Corporation of Shepherdstown’s Town Council held its monthly meeting on Feb. 12, discussing changes it will be preparing for this spring.

During the meeting, representatives from Shepherdstown Shares also voiced their appreciation for the community backing up their initiative to help federal employees who went without pay during the four-week government shutdown.

“The shutdown has had quite an impact on our visitor numbers,” said Shepherdstown Visitor Center Director Marianne Davis, who led the Shepherdstown Shares initiative with Shepherdstown resident Kerri Godfrey. “I’ve heard from at least one hotel that they are getting cancellations for spring and summer reservations, because people had to use their vacation savings to get them through the shutdown.”

Despite the problems the shutdown has caused Shepherdstown, Davis said Shepherdstown Shares was able to help 140 people in the Shepherdstown community. A total $6,000 and 6,000 pounds of food were donated by the community to Shepherdstown Shares, within one week of its founding.

Along with helping community members in need, the Town Council discussed funding Shepherd University’s Alternative Spring Break, in which Shepherd students help other West Virginia communities in need during their spring break.

“I came here to Shepherd to attend school, and I found out about this trip to the south of the state,” said sophomore biology major Caroline Ferrell, who went on last year’s trip.

According to Ferrell, who is from Harrison County, before participating in Alternative Spring Break, she was one of many young people who plan on leaving West Virginia after graduation.

“There are a lot of young people who plan on leaving West Virginia, but after attending last year’s Alternative Spring Break in Kermit, West Virginia and helping out there, I changed my mind,” Ferrell said. “It was the most incredible thing I’ve witnessed – the people there weren’t depressed by the opioid epidemic, they were optimistic about the future.

“This Alternative Spring Break made me proud of my state. It was one of the best experiences of my life,” Ferrell said. “I thank you all for helping us do that for the last two years.”

After hearing Ferrell’s remarks, the Town Council agreed to once again provide $500 for this year’s Alternative Spring Break.

Another annual Shepherdstown event the Town Council discussed, was the Shepherdstown Farmers Market. According to SFM President Natalie Friend, the market will be held this year, from March 31-Dec. 22, behind the Shepherdstown Public Library.

“We’re looking forward to another great year, and are currently finalizing our list of vendors. As you know, Uvilla Orchard is no longer, since Paul and Eileen have retired, so we have two spaces to fill,” Friend said about Uvilla Orchard owners Paul and Eileen Elliott, who ran Uvilla Orchards for about 35 years.

Frank Welch, Shepherdstown’s director of Public Works, spoke about Public Works’ 2018 Hazard Mitigation Plan Resolution, which focused on three active projects within the town, including tree planting in open spaces, homeowner education on flood planes and the need for Shepherdstown’s water plant to have an emergency generator.

The Town Council approved a $1,000 donation to Elmwood Cemetery’s renovation of its Superintendent’s House, and a $2,500 donation to the Jefferson County Historic Landmarks Commission.