My story starts back in the Fall of 2011. I had just started my obsession with the Appalachian Trail (AT) and was doing my first extended section hike. This hike ended at Pine Grove Furnace State Park. I had read a few press releases about the new AT Museum and was hoping to visit. On this day, I would be out of luck as the museum was closed during the week in the fall, so I had to content myself with looking into the windows to see what I could see. I vowed to return some day when the museum was open.
|Trail Halfway Marker, first section hike.|
|LoGear and EarthTone at Fontana Dam|
|A rainy day north of the AT Museum|
Well I think it was about 20 minutes after sending the resume to the museum, that I had a reply back from the President of the Appalachian Trail Museum Society, Larry Luxenberg, asking if he could call me. Our first conversation increased my interest in the job and I decided it was time to get involved with the museum to see what the job entailed and to volunteer my services.
I spent the next few weeks traveling up to the museum to act as a Docent and greet the visitors to the museum. I quickly found that talking to the visitors was a very rewarding thing to do and before long, I accepted their offer to become the next AT Museum Manager.
My tenure started November 1st, 2013 and I have been serving in that capacity for a year now. I tell everyone who will listen, that I have found my dream job and have really enjoyed working with the volunteers, the park crew and the visitors of the museum. Talking to the hikers who pass by on their epic journey is especially fun.
The AT Museum has changed my life for the better and I look forward to being a part of the Society for many years to come.
So, reflecting back over the last year, I have had a great time being the manager. I try to continuously find ways to bring in the much needed funds that we require to keep on flying and to expand the museum to the other three levels of the Old Mill. I added some retail items that I thought our visitors would enjoy and they have not disappointed.
|Me on day two of the 2014 season.|
Photograph by Robert Sutherland
To sum it up, I'm still having fun and as long as I can get out on the trail from time to time, I am content to see that white blaze right out the front door of the Museum.
As Bilbo Baggins reflected on his travels, I offer his song The Road Goes Ever On as a parting bit of advice. (with some minor changes to a word)