Investing in Gettysburg in Many Ways

Everyday activities are underway to make our town a wonderful place to live, work and play thanks to many people donating their time, talents, money and skills.  On May 5, Jenn Vinitigni, Community Pastor for the Intersection Church, spearheaded a team of 20 volunteers as they took to the streets of Gettysburg and cleaned 43 wayside signs that tell our town’s history. Jenn had contacted Main Street Gettysburg’s Vice Chair, Susan Naugle looking for service projects for her volunteer group during “Love Week,” April 30 through May 3rd.  Susan Naugle coordinates Main Street Gettysburg’s volunteer group, “From the Ground Up.”  This group picks up trash weekly on Monday mornings during the main tourist season, often around the wayside signs.

In addition to cleaning the waysides, a total of 317 volunteer hours of community service was invested by more than 80 Intersection Church volunteers during “Love Week” that included projects with SCCAP, Adams Rescue Mission, Shining Stars therapeutic riding arena, Gettysburg Senior Center and Gettysburg area soup kitchen.  “Love Week” has become an annual event since 2016 for Intersection Church and has totaled more than 700 hours of community service. 

Friday, June 15, 2018 from 4 – 6 p.m., the Baltimore Street District’s Executive Committee, another community volunteer group, is hosting a public event at Unity Park to celebrate the completion and approval of the Baltimore Street Historic Pathway Economic Revitalization (BSHPER) Master Plan. The free event will recognize both the financial donors and more than 80 people who volunteered their time and talents to complete the plan.  The community is invited to enjoy music by the Gettysburg Brass, light food and an opportunity to mingle.

The BSHPER Master Plan, prepared by Borough Engineer, C.S. Davidson, was made possible by the financial support of these major donors:   Adams County Community Foundation, South Mountain Partnership, Borough of Gettysburg, The Robert C. Hoffman Charitable Endowment Trust, Destination Gettysburg, Adams County Historical Society, Gettysburg Tours, Open Minds, Healthy Adams Bicycle Pedestrian Inc. and Lincoln Into Art.  

The Master Plan lays the groundwork for funding and grant requests to revitalize Baltimore Street with $11M of improvements in three phases that stretch between the southern Borough line with Gettysburg College the northern anchor of the plan.  It includes new infrastructure, beautification, pedestrian and bicycle amenities, improved safety measures and historic features focusing on Abraham Lincoln.  

Another example of a group of volunteers is the newly created “A Gettysburg Christmas” group. This group is looking to expand Steinwehr’s successful “Victorian Christmas” event throughout the commercial area of town.  Roger Lund has enthusiastically taken the leadership baton from MSG as a volunteer and has found block captains for 6 areas of town that will creatively present a theme for their area of town.  Themes are still being confirmed as the enthusiasm spreads throughout town.  Mark your calendars for the weekend of December 1 and 2, 2018 to enjoy a fun community driven holiday weekend in downtown.

These are just a small sample of the many community initiatives that help our town stay vibrant.  Clearly our town is blessed to have a local culture that begins with a giving spirit for our community.