(06/04/2001)
By Alvin Engelke

Maria Hathaway was attending to business in Creston Sunday evening.

The future of Wirt County has been on the mind of many area residents. The regional government people (the local one being Mid Ohio Valley) have been busy picking up the pieces even before the counties are killed off. A recent bad omen was the new Verizon Charleston telephone book that consolidated Wirt County with what appears to be Jackson County. The phone company added a small unnamed county up around Copen and Gilmer Station, made Putnam County larger than Kanawha and gave Parkersburg a second location at the mouth of the Big Kanawha.

Nancy and Jane Engelke participated in the Julia-Ann Square Historic District Victorian Garden Tour. Eleven homes were a part of the first ever tour put on by the Julia-Ann Square Association to raise money for installing period lighting and burying utility lines. It is a wonderful example of how people can get together for a common cause. The gardens were beautiful and inspiring, and made one want to go home and get busy with all the new ideas. Several of the garden's featured "Gazing Balls", mirrored, glass blown spheres. The Gazing Balls have been staples in formal Victorian gardens and according to Country Living Magazine, are making a come back. One can place them on pedestals or lay them directly on the ground. They allow viewers a panoramic view of their surroundings and are said to attract fairies and ward off evil spirits. WalMart has a nice selection of these balls at a very reasonable price and in a variety of colors. Area restaurants donated wonderful pastries for the afternoon tea and all the tour guides and servers were dressed in period costumes. An additional touch was the antiques cars parked in the driveways. Jane and Nancy's favorite was the Dee Gainer garden complete with pond, bridge, fountain and water plants. A two story deck was built on the rear of the house overlooking the garden. The front lawn garden was based on an old fashioned English garden. No grass to mow here. While touring, the Engelkes struck up a conversation with two ladies from Ohio and found out they had toured the Engelke home at Creston some years back. They remembered Jane baking gingerbread cookies in an old fashioned bake oven. There will be a tour of homes at Christmas to raise additional monies. It will be a "must attend" event for lovers of old homes and history.

The Ferrell family held its second week-end picnic, games and volleyball event at the Creston Community Building There is now a nice volleyball net at the Community Building for anyone to use if they would like to. Just check with Donna Sue to make sure the building isn't in use.

The next Creston auction isn't scheduled until Saturday June 30th a 6 PM. Be sure to mark your calendar.

Anna Engelke motored to Tygarts Valley High School to present Fairmont State College Scholarships to the seniors who won them. Anna is employed by the FSC recruiting office and enjoys her job very much. Earlier in the week Anna and Keith Collins took a long bike tour and then ran the college track. On the agenda for next week is a bike trip on the Rails to Trails bike trail.

Charles Russell was undergoing tests at the Minnie Hamilton Health Center.

Euell Russell went on a tour of "The Big House" up at Moundsville.

Jane Engelke walked her dog "Shadow" in the Walk Your Paws" fund raiser for the Wood County Humane Society. Shadow had a great time, as Jane put it, "Shadow walked me, I didn't walk her!!"

BD Oil, one of the local oil buyers, has noted that there have been problems with some local crude containing arsenic and some oil is too "arsenic rich" for the refinery's water treatment plant. Some feel that some of the political rhetoric over arsenic standards was dumped into the local crude supply.

Hallie Cunningham and daughter attended the Strawberry Festival in Buckhannon.

Jane Engelke entered the Hawaiian Tropic swimwear contest in Parkersburg and came away the winner with a $1,000.00 in cash prize money. She will compete in the state contest in August and if she wins there, will get an all expense paid trip to Las Vegas to compete in the National Swimwear event.

Events far away from Creston routinely have an impact here and are topics of talk. Now we know that the FBI, under orders from someone, perhaps the criminal couple, hid thousands of pages of evidence in the Oklahoma City bombing and that the NTSB said all the hundreds of people who saw the missile hit the TWA airplane were drunk. Some very sober people saw four military helicopters fly directly over one area office. They shook the structure.

Columbia Gas is having an airplane do prospecting along the Arches Fork anticline in Roane County. Columbia reported 3 dry holes in the deep well program but then it was learned that they ran 4 1/2" in the Medina well. Reports were that the Webster County wildcat and the well on Orchard Run were plugged. It is interesting to note that one well placed source said before drilling commenced, "Orchard Run will be dry -- Columbia is not interested in going into Calhoun County now."

The wet, cool weather continues in the Creston area. Gardens, tobacco patches, etc. are too wet although pasture and hay is growing. It would appear that many wild cherry trees will not recover from the worms that stripped their leaves. Wild cherry is the most valuable wood in the forest now.

Earlier in the season Westvaco sprayed large amounts of land and then the braceros planted pine trees. Now the power company is spraying a lot of area so everyone can maintain their exposure to herbicides.

The tire pile coordinator was in the Owl Hill section looking for waste tires. Someone suggested dropping used casings off at his place.


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