Message from the President 2022
The Covid-19 pandemic continues to present us with challenges. Although state and local regulations have restricted visitation and programming at the Park Visitor Center, the Park staff has worked diligently to provide experiences online and through other creative means. They deserve kudos for their efforts. Due to staffing shortages, the Park Visitor Center is currently closed Mondays and Tuesdays. The GBC had been unable to meet in person for months and our last board meeting was held by Zoom. Nevertheless many projects are still ongoing. The Park is operating under Interim Superintendent Matthew Woods. He comes to us from Moore’s Creek and has experience running a Revolutionary-era park.
Despite the pandemic, we have continued to be busy with projects:
- The Cannon project is nearing completion and we expect delivery as I write this. The Park will be remodeling the front entrance to the Visitor Center so the cannon can fit through the door so it can be displayed when not in use and taken outdoors for firing demonstrations. The GBC and the North Carolina Society of Cincinnati, along with the Park Service, contributed funds to make the acquisition of the cannon possible.
- The overlook project to replace the Colonial Heritage Center is projected to be about two to four years from completion. The overlook will include a structure, designed to reflect the double pin image of the Coble Barn that is on site. The structure will have an open area in the middle for use as classroom and demonstration space. The Coble Barn itself will be refurbished and repaired starting sometime this year. There is a design team working on new signage for the Hoskins Farmstead area that should be completed in the next two years. This updated signage will better tell the story and tie in the rest of the National Park site with the Hoskins Farmstead.
- Our book on the history of the GBC by local historian and author Gayle Fripp has been completed and will be offered for sale in the Visitor Center gift shop.
- We have signed a letter of agreement to loan the three Dale Gallon paintings to Caldwell Academy for display. This is a five-year agreement and as we have had the paintings in a storeroom for the last several years, we are happy to see them on public display.
For the coming year, we plan to look at ways to make the Park’s story more accessible online and through other means, such as interactive maps on the web and use of personal cell phones to access park information and history. We are also working on an updated Philanthropic Agreement with the Park as we head into 2022 and are anxiously awaiting the assignment of a permanent superintendent.
So, even with the pandemic, a lot is going on and projects are moving forward. None of this would be possible without your help and financial support. We strive to use your donations wisely to promote, protect and preserve this wonderful Battlefield Park that we all love. Again, thank you for your support and stay safe out there.
Ed Deaton, President, GBC