The Journey Through Hallowed Ground Partnership’s Tenth Anniversary Annual Conference is scheduled to take place May 19-20 at The Old School in the historic village of Waterford, VA. This year’s conference location is fitting since the Journey Through Hallowed Ground Partnership is headquartered there. This year marks not only the tenth anniversary of the organization but we will soon be approaching the 50th anniversary of the National Historic Preservation Act and Waterford was one of the first towns listed in its entirety on the National Register of Historic Places.
Stephanie Meeks, President and CEO of the National Trust for Historic Preservation will serve as a keynote speaker, which is especially poignant as the National Trust placed this region on America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places list that first alerted the nation to the threats to our communities almost 10 years ago to the day.
Under Meeks’ leadership, the National Trust has developed an ambitious strategic plan designed to refocus direct action on saving imperiled places, engaging new audiences in preservation, and increasing the organization’s impact by a factor of ten.
Organic food pioneer Nora Pouillon will also serve as a plenary speaker during the conference. Pouillon moved to the United States in the late 1960s and in 1979 opened Restaurant Nora, which became the first certified organic restaurant in the country in 1999. Her new memoir, My Organic Life, is the story of an unheralded culinary pioneer who made it her mission to bring delicious, wholesome foods to the American table.
As much the story of America’s postwar culinary history as it is a memoir, My Organic Life encompasses the birth of the farm-to-table movement, the proliferation of greenmarkets across the country, and the evolution of the chef into social advocate. Spanning the last forty years of our relationship with food, My Organic Life is the deeply personal, powerfully felt story of the organic revolution—by the unlikely heroine at its forefront.
Erin Francis-Cummings, President of Destination Analysts, will share the results of a new regional tourism market research study. Workshops will also highlight the upcoming Centennial Celebration of the National Park Service in 2016 and cover various topics, including: engaging youth/students in our collective national history, economic trends in heritage tourism, grant writing, African-American and other minority heritage, and more.
A Virginia Viticulture Field Session Tour will take participants to several wineries in the area and a networking reception will occur at Catoctin Creek Distilling Company in Purcellville. Guided walking tours showcasing the history of the quaint Quaker Waterford village along with a special awards luncheon where the Journey Through Hallowed Ground Partnership will recognize the Cornelia Keller Champion of the Year, Volunteer of the Year, Corporate Partner of the Year, and Certified Tourism Ambassador Star Award winner.
The conference is geared towards a variety of individuals, including economic development and tourism professionals, urban professional planners, attraction and museum staff, elected officials, historians, National Park Service employees, educators, Certified Tourism Ambassadors, and other engaged citizens.
Certification maintenance credits offered through the American Institute of Certified Planners are available for eligible and interested attendees.
Conference sponsors include the Waterford Foundation, Virginia News Group, and Loudoun Mutual Insurance Company. To register, or for more information, visit http://www.jthgannualconference.org.