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storymill.org

Lehigh Valley Storymill is our “act local” effort to make our backyard better. Tonight, after a town meeting, I wrote this:

Finding time to make the effort. That’s the key.

In recent years we’ve seen our valley invaded by developers intent on carving up and selling our daily views and vistas as half-acre luxury homes for New York and Philly expatriates. I’ve seen this happen twice in my life: first, in northeast New Jersey, as the woods around my house were razed to make a commuter town instead. Next, in southwest Florida, as developers rushed in like locusts to build strip-malls and gated communities on every scrap of beauty they could find.

Now here.

And it’s not just trees and views that suffer. It’s the culture as well. These new people have no shared memory of our towns, they have no connection to the places and organizations we love. To them, their home is an address, no more.

We need to tell them. We need to show the newcomers what our home is about. We need to tell the story of why we love living here, so as to pass along our pride by opening their eyes. We need to convince businesses of the value in being authentic. The valley’s not just a carbon-copy replica of every other place on the planet. We’ve got realness around us, and it’s in danger of being erased by short-sighted greed. Now’s the time to save what we love, before it’s gone.

So renewed of purpose, we begin again the Storymill struggle.

To help, please write something or drop me a line.

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