The Friends of the Mohawk Towpath Scenic Byway is a membership organization of enthusiasts dedicated to preserving the historic, cultural, natural, recreational, agricultural, and scenic resources within the corridor of the Mohawk Towpath Byway. That’s our story. Or should I say, that’s my “elevator speech.”
Defining our story is the number one priority of the Friends.
…it isn’t just one story, but it is multiple versions of one story that is tailored to the various audiences that will be hearing the story. We may even want to encourage people to select their particular favorite audience, then craft the story so it will resonate with that particular audience,
points out Ray Patterson, one of our charter members, who lives in West Virginia.
Let me add that each of the Friends of the Byway has a number of stories about our communities and our heritage. Most of us can tell one or more personal stories that has developed as they have volunteered for the Byway over the years. Each of us has one or more stories that they remember from family, friends, second person accounts, books, or teachers.
This body of knowledge with hundreds of stories make up the Byway story. This rich heritage is what brings our Byway to life. Whether its a Native People’s story, natural history, colonial history, stories from the Industrial Revolution, Erie Canal stories, local genealogy, or stories of our communities these all are part of the Byway story and need to be preserved. Some of these stories change over time as more research in local history, archeology and geology adds more depth and authenticity.
It is important for us, individually, and as an organization to hold on to these stories and preserve them for future generations.
Visitors to the Byway want to hear (or read) these stories as a part of their Byway experience. When we repeat a Byway story with authenticity we provide the listener with an intimate look at what makes our Mohawk Towpath Byway unique among a network of 150 America’s Byways®.