Not if you ask Beth and Tim Reese. They’re part of a powerful revitalization effort in Capon Bridge, West Virginia, a town of 400 nestled on the Cacapon River, at the “Gateway to the Mountains” of Appalachia.
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Tim & Beth Reese: Building Small Town Resilience in West Virginia
The community of Capon Bridge believes that restoring old buildings, rather than tearing them down, attracts young people and new businesses, like the Farmer’s Daughter Market & Butcher serving up “West Virginia’s Finest Finest” including one of America’s best burgers. A son of West Virginia, Tim Reese’s heritage is in coal, but he sees a future “mining West Virginia sun,” and his early investment in solar power is catching on throughout Hampshire County. Though they’ve lived in Capon Bridge for over 20 years, the Reeses still see themselves as newcomers, and they take a community-directed approach to building resilience.
“As behind the scenes people, our job is to listen well and to create opportunities for people to ponder what matters most. That’s the most important question. What matters most? And then to find a variety of ways —art, music, architecture, food, to mirror that back to them. Because it’s not about bringing something new, or fixing a town of integrity like this. It’s about mining what’s already here and what matters to people, and then telling the story. There are so many ways to do that.” – Beth Reese
More about Tim & Beth at https://www.facebook.com/taprootfarmwv
Hosted and produced by Kate Tucker, Hope Is My Middle Name is a podcast by Consensus Digital Media in collaboration with Reasonable Volume.