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Sideling Hill, Md. Unique Exhibit Center To Close

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:huh: Any National Road/US40/I-68 traveler may be interested in the proposed closing of the Sideling Hill Exhibit center on the east slope of Sideling Hill. This is because of MD.'s budget crisis, however an effort has been started by the Town of Hancock and Allegany and Wash. Cos., to try to save it.

The rest rooms, parking and scenic views will remain...

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:huh: Any National Road/US40/I-68 traveler may be interested in the proposed closing of the Sideling Hill Exhibit center on the east slope of Sideling Hill. This is because of MD.'s budget crisis, however an effort has been started by the Town of Hancock and Allegany and Wash. Cos., to try to save it.

The rest rooms, parking and scenic views will remain...

 

Historical sites and exhibits seem to bear an inordinate share of the burden of budget cuts. I suppose I understand, but I don’t like it.

 

Thanks for the update and I hope the “keep it open” efforts succeed.

 

Dave

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

 

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:huh: Any National Road/US40/I-68 traveler may be interested in the proposed closing of the Sideling Hill Exhibit center on the east slope of Sideling Hill. This is because of MD.'s budget crisis, however an effort has been started by the Town of Hancock and Allegany and Wash. Cos., to try to save it.

The rest rooms, parking and scenic views will remain...

I hope they succeed in keeping it open, of course, but I must admit that, while I've enjoyed the "parking and scenic views" multiple times, I've only entered the visitor's center once. I know there are things to be learned in the center but the WOWs are all outside.

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Latest news is mixed. The state has agreed to fund Thurs-Sun. operations until 9-1-09. Local interests have until 8-21-09 to find alternative funding, however Allegany and Washington Counties' commissioners have nixed using any general funds to operate the center.

Tourism and business interests are optimistic that the local motel/hotel tax can be tapped for limited operations, at least until the supporters can find permanent sources of funding.

The local school districts have also weighed in; seems this is a popular destination for schoolkid field trips.

To read more, go to Heraldmail.com.

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Latest news is mixed. The state has agreed to fund Thurs-Sun. operations until 9-1-09. Local interests have until 8-21-09 to find alternative funding, however Allegany and Washington Counties' commissioners have nixed using any general funds to operate the center.

Tourism and business interests are optimistic that the local motel/hotel tax can be tapped for limited operations, at least until the supporters can find permanent sources of funding.

The local school districts have also weighed in; seems this is a popular destination for schoolkid field trips.

To read more, go to Heraldmail.com.

 

Well, that's a glimmer of hope.

 

I never know whether it is better to close a place when it is successful and has a following and hope for a public outcry, or struggle on with a hodgepodge of funding that stills the outcry. Too often the latter ends up with a quiet closure after a season or two. Tough choices! Let’s hope it works out OK.

 

Dave

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

 

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<_< The Sideling Hill Exhibit center will close 8/31/09 for good, Md. state officials will not fund this facility "even if there is a remarkable turnaround" in the state's economy.

There is a proposal from the town of Hancock to move the exhibits and other materials there, but nothing has been offered as a location.

This is really all about the salaries of the 4 employees that worked there ($110,000/yr.). The local officials tried, but it is difficult to coordinate a "rescue" of this facility when every local jurisdiction is "broke".

It is distressing that in less than 20 years (facility opened to great fanfare in 1991), what was considered valuable and necessary is now going to be another empty building.

It seems to me that this country faces a time in the future where no one will care about this country's history or culture, the younger generations (X,Y,and the millenials) already show nothing but apathy and ignorance... :angry:

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It is sad that the center will close, and it is understandable to be angry at our lack of appreciation for our heritage. I share with you regret every time something disappears under the bulldozer, or closes, like the center. :angry:

 

The key is public appreciation and awareness, and that’s why the enjoyment of assets like historical roads is important. You and I travel them because we know and appreciate the historical panorama they offer us. As we share that with others, they too see beyond the abandoned building or rusting bridge and sense the human experiences they witnessed and represent.

 

Happily for those of us who enjoy two lane historical roads, there are still enough to drive that no human could enjoy all of them in a lifetime. The internet has provided a means to share, and an amazing treasure trove of information. In a few minutes last night I could take my 1916 road maps of Yosemite NP and relate them to the wonderful history of each road, something that would have taken months to do just a few years ago.

 

So all is not lost. We may have lost a battle, but I believe the war is turning in our favor. :)

 

Thanks for the update, and lets hope for better news in the future!

 

Dave

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

 

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