Friday, November 14, 2008

Our Fair City

The other day I received an email from friend and web guru Mark Wiard, over at Wiard Web Works. In his exalted position as local web knowledge dispenser AND the one person who knows more about my Mac than I do, Mark's notes are generally worth, well... noting. (Probably his wife will caution that it's not good to pay too much attention to Mark, as it only encourages him, but some attention is good.)


Our Fair City of Salida boasts fewer than 6000 folks and is two hours from just about anywhere, but that doesn't stop us from taking advantage of high tech AND low tech solutions to our local and global community concerns. Check out some Stuff Mark Told Me About:

The Salida Citizen : A local news blog! From the Citizen website-

"The Salida Citizen is an effort by the residents of Salida, Colorado to improve coverage of critical local issues, support smart decision-making, and facilitate positive communication between elected officials, City staff and concerned local citizens.

We are an experiment in citizen journalism, as described by Mark Glaser:

'The idea behind citizen journalism is that people without professional journalism training can use the tools of modern technology and the global distribution of the Internet to create, augment or fact-check media on their own or in collaboration with others. For example, you might write about a city council meeting on your blog or in an online forum. Or you could fact-check a newspaper article from the mainstream media and point out factual errors or bias on your blog. Or you might snap a digital photo of a newsworthy event happening in your town and post it online. Or you might videotape a similar event and post it on a site such as YouTube.'

We sincerely hope that by providing better access to information we can elevate the level of discourse beyond typical party politics to make Salida (and the Arkansas Valley) a better place to live. Contact us at salidacitizen at gmail dot com."

Cool, I say. Contributors so far include City officials and department heads, the Mayor, and local citizens.

And then there's the matter of Nathan Ward, a local guy with a global outlook. Nathan lives here sometimes, but more often than not he's living abroad as a journalist/photographer. The newest adventure, in Africa, began in the last few weeks. Ice Mountain Adventure Travel is all about responsible travel, so expect some stories of mishaps and mind expansion. Nathan and his mom, Suzanne, also authored a local trail guide.

Cool again, I say.

Back to Mark, who also maintains a page that tidily keeps all the local webcams in one place, and this week he added a new cam to the collection. This time of year I am a tad obsessive/ compulsive about checking the weather (especially if we're planning to go anywhere), so a one-stop local weather page lets me check over and over and over whilst keeping my weather bookmark list to a minimum.

Last, but not least... and I'm not sure if Mark sent me here himself, or if I wandered in from elsewhere, but the Salida Mountain Trails website has a great map and information about the ongoing development of great singletrack trails just across the river from downtown. Just in case you're planning on a visit or feel a need to weild a shovel on behalf of the community.

In other Salida news: I'll be back to linocuts this weekend, I promise!

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