Wednesday, August 14, 2013

As Not Necessarily Seen on The History Channel

This will sound like I'm trying to Tom Sawyer you into painting a fence, but I don't actually have a fence, or paint or brushes, come to think of it. Not that lacking any of that would in normal circumstances deter or discourage me.

I will plead guilty to attempting to entice and incite you into beginning a relationship you might not have otherwise found yourself in for quite some time, if ever at all.

And, no, I'm not talking about eating broccoli competitively or raising dental floss for fun and profit (assuming the latter is possible for any reason at any time).  

For the last year or so, there have been desultory discussions that on occasion rise to earnest and well-intentioned conversations about historic tourism, its impact, its execution and the potential challenges and rewards involved with it.

I don't mean that side-of-the-road out of the trunk of a car hucksterism like 'antiques made while you wait' but a genuine opportunity this region, most especially has to better realize that "Still Revolutionary" slogan the Connecticut Tourism Board feels can best tell our story to one another and to out of the area visitors. 

As a young friend of mine once offered on a stroll across Norwich, 'we certainly have a lot of old things' but history and telling our story are two different concepts very often joined at the narrative and in the presentation.

This Saturday morning at eight, rain or shine, snow or monsoon, tidal wave or permafrost (I just got a subscription to the Weather Channel. Can you tell?), please join with your neighbors and friends at the Leffingwell House Museum-you pass it all the time on the way to Norwichtown Commons (when was the last time you stopped in?), and bring work gloves, your best rake or other gardening implement as the One City Forum spruces up the grounds and landscaping. 

Consider it your chance to remake history. Imagine how many of the fast food wrappers we may dig out of the hedges were discarded by Ethan Allen and the Green Mountain Boys as they marched against the Crown during the Revolutionary War. 

Just think of how many fallen branches and berserk bushes the Forgotten Founders stepped over we'll have a chance to clean up and clean out. I'll warn you now, we need lots of helping hands so do more than just think about it. Be a part of it.

It's only for a couple of hours this Saturday morning and it's you chance to get up close and personal with a local landmark, the Leffingwell House Museum, that's tailor-made to be a cornerstone for any serious historical tourism in this part of Connecticut, and situated as it is right off the highway, could also serve as a sparkling gateway to where we live, The Rose of New England.

So often, too often, we say  to ourselves or one another 'somebody should find the time to ....' Well, here's a nearly-historic opportunity for you coming up Saturday morning. It's not everyday we can say George Sleptington Washed Here and that will certainly be the case on Saturday.
-bill kenny 

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