2006 FAC Meeting Notes

Please scroll down to find the Meeting Notes for 2006:
  • November 16, 2006
  • September 21, 2006
  • May 18, 2006
  • March 16, 2006
 
November 16, 2006
Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park
Park Advisory Commission Meeting
November 16, 2006
Strasburg Town Hall
Strasburg, Virginia
Agenda
I) General Introductions
II) Review and Approval of Minutes from 21 September 2006 (10 minutes)
III) Election of Commission Vice-Chair (10 minutes)
IV) GMP Status Update (10 minutes)
V) GMP alternative concepts; presentation and group discussion
VI) Old Business
• Bylaws
VII) New Business
• Park landowners forum to be held 22 January 2007
VIII) Next Meeting – 18 January 2007 in Middletown

Meeting Notes
Commission members in attendance: Diann Jacox, Designated Federal Official (DFO); Mary Bowser, Chairperson; Elizabeth McClung; Howard Kittell; Gene Dicks; Jim Smalls; Randolph Jones; Fred Andreae; Dan Stickley; Kris Tierney
Commission members absent: Roy Downey; Gary Rinkerman; Richard Kleese; Patrick Farris

Others in attendance: Chris Stubbs, NPS; David Piper; Sandra Piper; Elizabeth Wilkerson, Northern VA Daily; Sarah Mauck, Town of Strasburg; Suzanne Chilson, Cedar Creek Battlefield Foundation; Sarah Reid, Winchester Star
Chairperson Mary Bowser chaired the meeting.
The notes from the 21 September 2006 meeting were reviewed and approved as written.
Mr. Chris Stubbs of the National Park Service provided a general management plan status update to the Commission, the details of which were handed out to the Commissioners and the public.
There was a brief discussion led by Diann Jacox regarding the status of the expired Commission appointments.

There was a presentation and facilitated discussion from Mr. Stubbs on the draft GMP conceptual alternatives. A hard copy of the draft conceptual alternatives was provided to the Commissioners. A summary of the discussion that occurred during the presentation are appended to these commission notes.

The vote for the Commission Vice-Chairperson for the 2007 season was held. Two people were nominated: Kris Tierney and Fred Andreae. An anonymous vote was held using paper ballot, and Kris Tierney was re-elected for a second term.

There was a brief discussion of the bylaws that were presented to the Commission by the Department of the Interior. The Commissioners voted unanimously to adopt these bylaws for the Park Advisory Commission.

The Commissioners discussed the process for informing the public of the GMP alternatives. They encouraged the NPS to inform the public of the alternative concepts either through a newsletter or a public meeting. This should occur prior to issuance of the Draft GMP. The Commissioners also encouraged the NPS to present the draft alternatives to the Key Partner organizations and to local
governments.

Commissioner Jim Smalls asked if he could make a brief presentation at the next Park Advisory Commission meeting on the George Washington / Jefferson National Forest planning process.

The next meeting will be on 18 January 2007 at the Middletown Town Hall.

With no further discussion, the meeting was adjourned by Chairperson Bowser.

List of handouts provided at 21 September 2006 meeting

1. Meeting agenda
2. Minutes from 21 September 2006 Commission meeting
3. GMP status update
4. Bylaws from the Dept. of the Interior
5. Draft Conceptual Alternatives paper, dated November 9, 2006
Appendix I – Discussion of Draft Alternative Management Concepts (9 November 2006 Version)

• The question was raised as to whether the Park would consider an equestrian trail in addition to the planned hiking and biking trails.
• There was some discussion about there not being enough distinction among the alternatives. We should clarify the differences between the alternatives. One possibility is to combine two of the alternatives, perhaps C and D.
• There is confusion about actions common to all alternatives: if each of the boxes is checked for a particular decision point, shouldn’t this be moved to the “actions common to all alternatives?”
• There is a need to highlight the cooperation with the National Historic District in all alternatives.
• There was a suggestion to globally replace “Park” with “Partnership Park”.
• There is a need in the GMP to have a definitions section near the front of the document and define “Park”, “Key Partners”, “National Historic District”, etc.
• Under “related resources”, the wording should be tightened – define the term “related resources” and drop “thematically related to the park”.
• Under “Collaborative Relationship”, should there be a financial component? There should be a reciprocal relationship where the NPS and Key Partners bring finances to the table – a mutually supporting financial commitment. This should be a new decision point. Under this decision point, the Key Partners would become a “Friends” group like at other NPS units.
• “Technical Assistance” – this term needs to be specifically defined in the GMP. What does it mean?
• Technical assistance should be provided to communities in all alternatives, not just C and D.
• Geographic distinctions may not be the best way to define the differences among alternatives regarding technical assistance. Would we really make a distinction between the viewshed and the National Historic District? Rather, this should focus on where the park would put its priorities for technical assistance. Inside the park is top priority; outside is lower priority.
• Overall, the alternative concepts were well received by the Commissioners. We have found a way to address all the interpretive themes and focus on the key decision points. The Commissioners feel the NPS should proceed with developing these alternatives.
• The Commissioners applauded the change from the concepts that were presented on September 21, 2006, which were seen as divisive. The new alternative concepts are more functional.
 
September 21, 2006
Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park
Park Advisory Commission Meeting
September 21, 2006
Warren County Government Center
Front Royal, Virginia

Agenda
I) General Introductions
II) Review and Approval of Minutes from 20 July 2006 (10 minutes)
III) Election of Commission Chair (10 minutes)
IV) GMP Status Update (10 minutes)
V) GMP alternative concepts; presentation and discussion – Michael Clarke, Wallace Roberts
& Todd (90 minutes)
VI) Presentation from Department of Interior Solicitor on federal advisory commissions and bylaws [speaker invited but not yet confirmed] (60 minutes)
VII) Old Business
VIII) New Business
IX) Election of Vice-Chair in November
X) Next Meeting – 16 November 2006 in Strasburg
Meeting Notes
Commission members in attendance: Diann Jacox, Designated Federal Official (DFO); Mary Bowser, Chairperson; Elizabeth McClung; Richard Kleese; Howard Kittell; Gene Dicks; Jim Smalls; Randolph Jones; Patrick Farris; Fred Andreae; Dan Stickley

Commission members absent: Kris Tierney; Roy Downey; Gary Rinkerman;

Others in attendance: Chris Stubbs, NPS; Michael Clarke, WRT; Wendy Hamilton,
Preserve Frederick; Hale Hawbecker, Dept. of Interior; Robert King, Northern Virginia Daily; John Hornick, Shenandoah Long Rifles; Kevin Seabrooke, the Warren Sentinel
Chairperson Mary Bowser chaired the meeting.
The notes from the 20 July 2006 meeting were reviewed and approved as written.
The vote for the Commission Chairperson for the 2006-2007 season was held. Three nominations were received by the National Park Service, all for Mary Bowser. A voice vote was held, and Dr. Bowser was elected for a second term by unanimous vote, with one abstention. During the November 2006 meeting, the Commissioners will vote for a Vice Chairperson.

Mr. Chris Stubbs of the National Park Service provided a general management plan status update to the Commission, the details of which were handed out to the Commissioners and the public.

There was a presentation from Mr. Stubbs on the park’s draft Foundation Plan. This document is a formal statement of the core mission of the Park, provides basic guidance for decision making, and is the first step toward GMP planning. Mr. Stubbs encouraged all Commissioners to send him their comments on the draft foundation plan. After the presentation, there was a short discussion on the
foundation plan which is documented in the appendix to these notes.

There was a presentation from Mr. Michael Clarke from the consulting firm Wallace Roberts & Todd on GMP conceptual alternatives, then there was a facilitated discussion on the topic. A summary of this presentation and the discussion that occurred during the presentation are appended to these
commission notes.

There was a presentation and a Q&A session with Hale Hawbecker, Dept. of Interior Solicitor, on federal advisory commissions and bylaws. The following summarizes the main points of Mr. Hawbecker’s talk:
• In his observation, the Cedar Creek and Belle Grove NHP Commission is collegial and functioning well.
• There are some problems with the version of the bylaws submitted by the Commission – it would be better to use the version provided by the Dept. of Interior.
• There are problems with using Roberts Rules of Order to run meetings. The Department prefers that meetings are run by consensus and that voting is only held for basic things like approving meeting minutes. The “consensus process” is much better for providing advice, which is the role of the Commission.
• If the Commission is to have bylaws, they should be simple. “If you build yourself a box, then you have to stay in that box.” Complex bylaws can lead to successful legal challenges.
• Regarding Commission procedures, Mr. Hawbecker reminded the group that handouts and e-mails shared regarding Commission business are public documents and are available to the public. Do not send any e-mails that you do not want seen by the public.
• Commission subcommittee work is not subject to public scrutiny until it is presented to the full Commission.
• It is okay for the Commission to conduct business between meetings via e-mail and subcommittees, but no final decisions should be made.
• Regarding the Commission’s authority to hold hearings and take public input, any such meetings must comply with the Federal Advisory Committee Act and all of the regulations that implement the Act. For example, the meetings must be open to the public, advertised in the Federal Register, etc.

Under new business, there was an announcement that the Cedar Creek Battlefield Foundation and Belle Grove would be hosting the 2006 battle reenactment during the weekend of Oct. 21-22. Also, gratitude was expressed to Commissioner Patrick Farris for providing the room and refreshments for the meeting today.

The next meeting will be on 16 November 2006 at the Strasburg Town Hall. With no further discussion, the meeting was adjourned by Chairperson Bowser.

List of handouts provided at 20 July 2006 meeting


1. Meeting agenda
2. Minutes from 20 July 2006 Commission meeting
3. GMP status update
4. Bylaws from the Dept. of the Interior
5. Draft Foundation Plan (6 September 2006 Version)
6. Draft Conceptual Alternatives matrix
Appendix I – Discussion of Draft Foundation Plan (6 September 2006 Version)

Significance Statement #1:
• We should add people and the social history of the battle to this concept (e.g., the Ramseur story).
• Civilian farms were important.
• Military camp life was important.

Significance Statement #2:
• This statement is too complex.
• We should not include the pre-historic in this statement.
• Antebellum is generally considered to be the time period between the Revolutionary and Civil Wars – is this what we mean?

The Native American story seems not to be adequately covered in the Foundation Plan. Native American land use may have modified the landscape to such an extent that it impacted Euro settlement of the Valley. Also, the Valley Pike was originally a Native American route, and there are Native American stories at Harmony Hall.

In terms of antebellum history, both the Bowmans and Hites were involved in the Revolutionary War.

Appendix I – Discussion of Alternative Concepts

Michael Clarke from WRT gave a presentation on GMP decision points and potential alternative concepts. A handout was provided to the Commissioners with these potential concepts. Following is the major discussion points:
• Concepts A and B seem too dichotomous – could they create dissension among the partners and the public? Perhaps it would be better to combine A & B into one alternative. A & B seem to polarize the issues unnecessarily. Organizing the alternatives by themes will likely be divisive – probably the internal logic should not be thematically based.
• NPS needs a role in protecting resources – Alt. C is a “straw man” that simply won’t work. One of the primary reasons the Park was created was so that NPS would help protect and preserve resources of the area.
• One idea is to collapse A & B, keep some version of C, and include the No-Action alternative.
• B seems to encapsulate the stories that are within A.
• Another idea is to look at the Park as a model of stewardship of green and open space and land conservation – this could be an alternative, or a paradigm for how to view the alternatives.
o Aggressive resource protection
o Park is a forum and model for how private land owners and nonprofits can protect land and be good stewards
o People can come to NPS for help and assistance in land protection and conservation
o Would have a “green” visitor center
o Heritage would be preserved
o NPS and partners would have a contemporary role in heritage preservation
o Focus would be preservation and conservation
o “Explain the past; preserve the future.”
o Park could have a learning center for resource stewardship
o But, would you lose some of the “storytelling” aspect of park management?
• Another possible paradigm: preserving the heritage of the Park and the Valley vs. telling the story of the Park and the Valley.
• We cannot lose the Civil War component of the park – this is what originally brought all the partners to the table and brings national support and funding.
• Another possible paradigm: the “leaf” vs. the “onion” analogy for looking at history; or, viewing history vertically vs. horizontally. You can either look at the sites and resources as they exist now and interpret that, or you can peel back the onion to look at successive, multiple layers of history at each site. Blandy Farm is an example, with their different types of self guided tours (Boxwood tour, nature walk, conifer tour, etc.)
o But, what would be the differences in how we manage the park under this paradigm?
• The Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation plan focused their alternatives around “how” to provide visitor services, not “what” to manage (i.e., visitor center options, etc.).
• Should we organize the alternatives around the management structure of the park?
• We could organize around delivery of visitor services – how visitors interact and where they go.
• Stewardship and conservation was why the National Park Service was originally asked to be a partner.


 
May 18, 2006
Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park
Park Advisory Commission Meeting
May 18, 2006
Strasburg Town Hall
Strasburg, Virginia

I) General Introductions
II) Introduction of Mr. Randolph Jones, representing the Commonwealth of Virginia
III) Review and Approval of Minutes from 16 March 2006 (10 minutes)
IV) GMP Status Update (20 minutes)
V) GMP Alternatives; presentation and discussion – Elizabeth Clarke and Michael Clarke, Wallace Roberts & Todd (120 minutes)
VI) Old Business
• Bylaws Subcommittee update – Mr. Gary Rinkerman
• Status of Town of Strasburg appointment
VII) New Business
VIII) Meetings after July – timing, frequency, duration, location
IX) Next Meeting – 20 July 2006 in Middletown

Meeting Notes
Commission members in attendance: Diann Jacox, Designated Federal Official (DFO); Mary Bowser, Chair; Kris Tierney, Vice Chair; Elizabeth McClung; Howard Kittell; Gene Dicks; Jim Smalls; Randolph Jones; Patrick Farris; Fred Andreae; Dan Stickley; Gary Rinkerman

Commission members absent: Roy Downey; Richard Kleese

Others in attendance: Chris Stubbs, NPS; Steven Stubbs, NPS; Sarah Reid, Winchester Star; Catharine Gilliam, National Parks Conservation Assoc.; Mary Ann Littrell; David Blount; Nora Amos, Town of Strasburg; Michael Clarke, WRT; Elizabeth Clarke, WRT

Chairwoman Mary Bowser chaired the meeting.

Chairwoman Bowser introduced Mr. Randolph Jones, the new Commissioner for the Commonwealth of Virginia.

The notes from the 16 March 2006 meeting were reviewed and approved as written.

Mr. Chris Stubbs of the National Park Service provided a general management plan status update to the Commission, the details of which were handed out to the Commissioners and the public. There was a discussion of the proposed format for the upcoming NPS
scoping meetings. The meetings will consist of a presentation by the NPS, then small group
discussions with the public in which the Commissioners will play a role. The meeting dates and times were handed out to the Commissioners and the public.

There was also a discussion of the public notification/announcement for the scoping meetings. It was generally felt by the Commissioners that the meetings should be announced widely including:
• Local newspapers
• Radio
• Chambers of commerce and tourism boards
• Local governments
• Local landowners inside the park
• An expanded mailing list, including additions from the partner organizations

There was a presentation from Ms. Elizabeth Clarke from the consulting firm Wallace Roberts & Todd on general management planning in the National Park Service. Ms. Clarke focused particularly on the development of alternatives in GMPs. Then Mr.
Michael Clarke from the same firm gave a presentation that showed examples of how partnership parks have been managed across the country. After these presentations, there was an open-ended discussion among the Commissioners about GMP alternatives, the notes from which are appended to these commission notes.

There was a discussion of the draft by-laws. Mr. Gary Rinkerman stated that the bylaws
subcommittee had worked on the bylaws to make them shorter and remove some of the provisions of concern. Mr. Rinkerman made the changes and the document was then reviewed by the subcommittee. After several more changes, the document has been forwarded to the National Park Service (NPS) for review. The NPS will review the document and then send it on to the Department of Interior Solicitor for review. In addition, the question about the Commission’s role and function regarding holding public meetings and hearings will be forwarded to the Solicitor for clarification.

There was a discussion of the Town of Strasburg vacancy on the Commission, and concern was raised again that this position has not been filled. Ms. Jacox stated that the NPS sent a formal letter requesting that the Town nominate a Commissioner, but has received no response. Nora Amos, Strasburg Town Planner, spoke from the audience and stated that the Mayor would like to wait until July for the appointments of the new Town Council members before making a nomination to the Park Advisory Commission. Ms. Jacox stated that this is a critical position and that waiting until July would be problematic.

There was a discussion of the meetings that would occur after the July Commission meeting. The Commissioners decided to continue to meet bi-monthly, on the third Thursday, at 9:00 a.m. For the next year, the meetings will rotate between Front Royal (Warren County Government Center), Strasburg (Strasburg Town Hall), and Middletown (Middletown Town Hall). The NPS will prepare a schedule and Federal Register Notice for these meetings.


The ext meeting will be on July 20, 2006 at the Middletown Town Hall, Middletown,
VA.

With no further discussion, the meeting was adjourned by Chairwoman Bowser.

List of handouts provided at 18 May 2006 meeting
1. Meeting agenda
2. Minutes from 16 March 2006 Commission meeting
3. GMP status update
4. Dates, locations, and time for NPS scoping meetings
Appendix I – Notes on General Management Plan Alternatives

After the presentation by Elizabeth and Michael Clarke of Wallace Roberts & Todd, the Commissioners engaged in a discussion of GMP alternatives. The discussion points are presented in no particular order of importance:

• NPS current funding realities must be incorporated into the planning process
• Funding levels will have an impact on each partner
• Important for partners to be sure they have the financial resources to sustain their
operations
• There is a favorable view of the cluster concept as depicted in the SVBF plan
• There is the major question of how to get “buy-in” for the NPS GMP decisions – one option is for the various stakeholders to be bound by a legal document
o No matter how good the plan is, it will not be implemented if there is not a vehicle that
requires the parties to interact; for example, Frederick County could choose to ignore the plan and then it would become irrelevant
• One possible management entity is a foundation with a board and voting members including the key partners
o Can the NPS be legally bound to a voting board?
o Can the Park Advisory Commission serve as this entity?
o Figuring out the management entity may be the most difficult aspect of this plan
o There must be an entity that the public can approach for park information, interpretation, etc. There must be a management entity for the park.
o SVBF could serve as an example
o Local governments must buy in to whatever entity is created or park will not be successful – we must engage local governments in the GMP process
• To what extent are we talking about managing each other’s operations or are we talking about managing our own operations and collaborating?
• Probably more likely a collaboration – details of each operation should be left to the
organization that manages that operation
• GMP should have general principles for how the stakeholders collaborate
• The cooperative agreements could be the instrument for enforcing the implementation of the GMP
• Perhaps the Park Advisory Commission could serve as the basis for the collaboration
• For partners to cede some level of autonomy there would have to be something that they get back in return
o Ceding autonomy to the collective vision
o But partners must still remain responsive to their boards
• NPS is guided by NPS regulations and policies – agency can only assist the partners and others to the extent that they are guided by these policies as well
o For example, NPS has responsibility to notify public about major activities (for example,
reenactment) that will affect them, but partners do not. There is a desire that the partners would sign on to an elevated commitment to the public
• Partnerships mean something very different today than 20 years ago. Used to mean primarily that it was a way for groups to receive government funding. Now partnerships mean working together and in many cases the partners are funding government programs, facilities, etc. This represents a paradigm shift.
• An important aspect of the partnership that we haven’t discussed is the private landowners within the park – very important players – what voice do the private property owners have in the GMP creation?
o Also, “park community partners” (from the legislation) – what does this mean?
o So, there are partners other than the “Cornerstones” – how do we involve them?
o Private property owners are listed as park community partners and have a voice on the Park Advisory Commission
• Private property – we must make sure that private property rights are respected, particularly with regard to park visitors
• We are fortunate that the partners are currently self-sufficient
• The vistas and the setting of the park (landscapes) may be the most important aspect of the area – the GMP must protect these things. The value of the area will be diminished exponentially if the landscape becomes cluttered
o The landscapes are a core value
o Only way to protect landscapes is through partnerships
o Landscapes and views are influenced by forces within and outside the park
• One way to engage local governments is to show them that the park can bring revenue
• GMP and planning process needs to stick to broad vision, then the partners and other
stakeholders contribute resources toward the vision







 
March 16, 2006
Cedar Creek and Belle Grove National Historical Park
Park Advisory Commission Meeting
March 16, 2006
Middletown Town Hall
Middletown, Virginia

Meeting Agenda
I) General Introductions
II) Review and Approval of Minutes from 19 January 2006 meeting (10 minutes)
III) GMP Status Update (20 minutes)
IV) Park Foundation Planning and Commissioner Input (30 minutes)
V) National Park Service Visitor Center Planning; presentation and discussion – Ms. Dawn Godwin, NPS Washington Office, Park Planning and Special Studies Division (75 minutes)
VI) Old Business
• bylaws
VII) New Business
VIII) Next Meeting – 18 May 2006 in Strasburg

Meeting Notes
Commission members in attendance: Diann Jacox, Designated Federal Official (DFO); Kris Tierney, Vice Chair; Elizabeth McClung; Howard Kittell; Gene Dicks; Jim Smalls; Richard Kleese; Patrick Farris; Fred Andreae; Dan Stickley

Commission members absent: Alson Smith; Roy Downey; Gary Rinkerman; Mary Bowser

Others in attendance: Chris Stubbs, NPS; Marcus Ordonez, Shenandoah Co. Parks & Rec.; Steven Stubbs, NPS; Lisa McDonald, Shenandoah Valley Herald; Heather Richards, Potomac Conservancy; John Sygielski, Lord Fairfax Community College; Harold Strosnider, local resident; Suzanne Chilson, Cedar Creek Battlefield Foundation; Sarah Reid, Winchester Star; Dawn Godwin, NPS

Vice-Chair Kris Tierney chaired the meeting.

The notes from the 19 January 2006 meeting were reviewed and approved as written.

Mr. Chris Stubbs of the National Park Service provided a general management plan status update to the Commission, the details of which were handed out to the Commissioners and the public.

Mr. Stubbs then gave a presentation on the park’s foundation plan, focusing specifically on
fundamental resources and values. After the brief presentation, Mr. Stubbs facilitated a scoping session in which the Commissioners provided input on fundamental resources and values within the park. The scoping results are appended to these commission notes.

There was a presentation from Ms. Dawn Godwin from the NPS Washington Office Division of Park Planning and Special Studies on planning for facilities and visitor experience. The notes from Ms. Godwin’s PowerPoint presentation will be handed out at the May commission meeting. After her presentation, Ms. Godwin and Mr. Stubbs facilitated a scoping session on visitor experience. The scoping results are appended to these commission notes.

There was a discussion of the draft by-laws. Superintendent Diann Jacox stated that the response from the solicitor on this document indicated that there are several points that are contrary to Federal Advisory Committee Act regulations, and it is generally felt that the by-laws are too lengthy and complex. Chairperson Tierney suggested that it was not a good use of time at the full Commission meeting to discuss the by-laws point-by-point; rather, the subcommittee should take up the by-laws with the goal of simplifying them. Mr. Smalls suggested having no by-laws as they are not necessary for the Commission to fully function.

A motion was made that the subcommittee take up the by-laws with the goal of simplifying them. Mr. Stubbs will participate in the committee in addition to serving as its organizer. The motion passed.

There was a discussion of the Town of Strasburg vacancy on the Commission, and concern rose that this position has not been filled. Ms. Jacox stated that she has received no reply from Strasburg regarding their nomination, but would have a formal letter sent from the NPS to Strasburg regarding this nomination. There was a discussion about whether the Commission would send a separate letter to the Town of Strasburg urging them to provide a nomination for this important position.

A motion was made that the Commission would send a separate letter. The motion passed and it was agreed that Chairperson Bowser would write the letter.

After a brief discussion of the next meeting, which will be on 18 May 2006 in Strasburg, the
meeting was adjourned.

List of handouts provided at 16 March 2006 meeting
1. Meeting agenda
2. Minutes from 19 January 2006 Commission meeting
3. GMP status update
Appendix I – Scoping Notes on Fundamental Resources and Values

The definition of fundamental resources and values and other resources and values is summarized as:

Fundamental Resources and Values
• Particular features, systems, structures, processes, experiences, stories, scenes, sounds, landscapes, etc. that are key to achieving the park’s purpose and maintaining it significance
• Resources that will be given primary consideration during planning and management

Other Important Resources and Values
• Resources that are important to planning and management, but not fundamental

Then the group engaged in a discussion of fundamental and other resources and values. They are, in no particular order of importance:

• There are at least two historic structures in the park that retain their integrity: Belle
Grove and Harmony Hall – the settings and stories associated with these historic structures are significant
• The Harriet Robinson / Belle Grove story
• The relationship between slaves and owners during plantation life
• Slavery and plantation community
• Landscapes / land use / the rustic, rural character of the area
• Natural and historical landscapes
• Views and the viewshed – the viewshed hasn’t changed much since the Civil War
• Transportation and the Valley Pike
• Issues associated with Valley settlement
• Interpretation of the Valley Pike: from a hunting path to a wagon road to the turnpike to
Route 11
• Commerce in the Valley – moving crops and other products
• The Shenandoah Valley as America’s first frontier (may be some Native American sensitivity to this)
• Civil War – the topography was critical to the battle; this topography has changed very little
• The Civil War
• The Valley was in the Federal plan to end the War
• Valley was a “backdoor” to Richmond and Washington
• Losing the Valley was the “beginning of the end” of the Confederacy or the “beginning of the end” of the War
• There were no further threats to DC once the Valley was in Union control and they could focus on Lee’s army
• The Battle of Cedar Creek was strategically critical to the war
• Agriculture

• The natural environment and its relationship to the built environment
• Signal Knob
• The topography of the Valley funneled travel, transportation, and commerce
• The Valley as a breadbasket – this was important during the Civil War
Appendix II – Scoping Notes on Facilities and Visitor Experience

How should visitors receive information?
• Small groups at Belle Grove
• Battlefield tours
• Acquire the ability to service large groups at the annual reenactment
• Harmony Hall tours should be held
• Visitors should be able to be out of their cars, on the landscape, either in groups or having
a private experience

Mobility
• We need to consider the mobility-impaired as well as those more ambulatory
• Provide some wheelchair access to important sites as appropriate

What do we want to interpret?
• “Depends on the site”
• Technology may help reduce a clutter of signs on the landscape
• Troop movements and military history important, but must be careful not to clutter landscape
• Maybe have a hub with a panoramic view and a wayside keyed into attractions
• Multiple interpretive media
• Some places simply require a “live” interpreter so individual tours can be tailored to the
audience

Development Zoning / Visitor Center
• Should be in a central location
• We need to think about our impact and other development we could spur
• Possibility of having a multi-use or shared facility with partners
• Possible interim solution – co-locating with Lord Fairfax
• Should have a panoramic view of the battlefield and park
• Are there existing facilities that could be used?






Last updated: January 14, 2018

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