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Fall is upon us, so comes the end

Hello friends!

I come to you today with a heavy heart. I’ve decided that the Rock Point Park Newsletter will be ending.

The Rock Point Park website (and newsletter) began on December 7, 2007, and I had high hopes that many folks, especially those from (or originally from) the Ellwood City region would have some interest in the former amusement park. Certainly some have shown interest, and I am very grateful for that, and for your participation in the project. But generally, interest has fallen sharply from the point of the launch, and I know when it’s time to stop making the effort to maintain it. I had hoped that this newsletter would become a place for sharing, and a focal point for discussion. But sadly, this has not been the case. I suspect that many folks don’t understand the concept of a web-based conversation tool, and others might simply not have enough interest to participate. And that’s OK. It doesn’t matter what the reasons are, it is only the outcome that helped me make my decision.

For those who did participate, even if it was just in the guestbook. I am humbly appreciative. It was a great joy to hear your stories, and to have gotten to know you through the messages you shared. I will be honored to stay in communication with anyone who is interested, via email. But, the newsletter portion of the website will be closed shortly after the December 7th anniversary.  I have already incurred the cost of renewal for the website, so it will remain available through December of 2009.

To those of you who donated toward the cost of hosting the website, I thank you deeply. Those funds have been used to pay part of the costs for next year’s hosting plan. Further donations will not be accepted unless I decide to continue the main site beyond the 12/2009 end-date.

It’s been a great experience for me to offer this website to the Internet community. It was very fulfilling to have worked through this project, and find the answers that had been haunting me for most of my life. And I very sincerely thank all those who offered their information and items for display on the site. You are what really made the site what it is, and for that, you should be proud.

Best wishes, and great love, to all!

Bruce

6 Responses to “Fall is upon us, so comes the end”

  1. I’m extremely sorry to see that your taking down such a momentious website. I was asked to look for information and its VERY HARD to do. If this website goes down, it will be almost impossible. I”m sorry that things cost so much to run, but I can tell you that you can get FREE websites that way people can access this over and over again, and not loose the data. Please understand that there really are people who are not as knowledgeable of the internet and to find you is not an easy thing. I’ve searced most of your site and not found an address yet. I have a few friends who wish to walk down memory lane of their fathers and also some who wish to detect. I’ve got interests in old parks and research upon them. With the internet being so vast, its not easy to find a search where every old park is located on one page.

    Please consider opening a free informational website. You can transfer all this over to that and keep up the informatin for those of us who need help. OR better yet. Try Wikipedia

    Thanks and please email my husband back at tjg02adg@hotmail.com or googz18@yahoo.com He is one of the ones who like old parks and history on things that his dad would have gone to. I’m not sure that my family has gone to anything like this park, I’m quite sure they did. We have a few friends who like to come up and use a metal detector, but thats on them to contact you. If there is anything that I can help with. I’m afraid that I’m not able to offer much financial help. I’ll be happy to tell you that My husbands whole family has done all kinds of historical work. His brother was working on restoring one of the old trollies and had done a great deal of research as well as help with the Maple Syrup Festival and Air Heritage just to name a few items that they have done and are still involved in.

    Our numbers are 724-417-0837 Tim and 724-417-0833 Angela

    Again, thanks for the information, however I still am unable to find the address anywhere. Please can you help us out with this?

  2. Hi Angela,

    Thanks for writing! I only have a moment, but wanted to give you some basic information. When you say you searched the website and couldn’t find an address, did you mean an email address, or a website address? To email me from the newsletter page, there is a link in the right hand column called “Contact”. Clicking on that will take you to a page with email links.

    If you meant the website address, there are buttons at the top of the right column to take you to the guestbook and the main rock point park website.

    On the main rock point park website, there are several links to email me. One is in the “Editor’s Desk” section on the main page, and another is by my picture on the “Contributor’s” page.

    As far as “free sites” go. They are generally very hard to work with for full scale web projects. They don’t support the functionality needed to present this level of information and format. Plus, they tend to stick annoying advertisements all over the place. The cost for hosting the Rock Point Park (rockpointpark.com) website and the RPP newsletter really isn’t that great. I’m willing to cover the cost on my own. But, whether or not people are willing to support it is an indication (to me) of overall interest. A lot of work went into researching the information and building the site, and it’s still a good amount of work to maintain it. I guess I’m just not interested in doing that much work for something people don’t want or need.

    It’s been a fun project, and there was a lot of interest early on. But, now the numbers of visitors coming to the site, and the amount of interaction, has dropped off to nearly nothing. It’s more a matter of trying to use my time more wisely than it is about the money. I will never recoup the cost of building the site, with all the man-hours of research and development it took, the site would have cost in the range of $10,000 to $15,000 to build, if I hadn’t done it myself. But, like a said, I enjoyed it very much. I’m just disappointed that more folks are interested.

    Even though the newsletter will be closed soon, the main site will remain through 2009. I’ll have to make a decision at that point as to continuing, or not.

    Thanks again for your interest. We do share a passion for local history, and I look forward to the chance of meeting you both someday.

    Best,

    Bruce

  3. Actually I was looking for an actual address to see the place. I was having trouble locating it on your site. So I did find it on http://www.rcdb.com/pd1500.htm This states that your figure 8 ride is still up but not running. Is this true? I’d love to take pictures. Also there are a few sites that are free that are on PP and think that you might like to reference them. However, I’ve noticed that even if your site hits go down. It might be because its not something that one would need to look at every day. Once youve read a site a few times, you can pretty much see everything thats there unless its an encylopedia. People like my friends and family, come across names and thats why we hit up the website. Please try Wikipedia. Its easy to navigate and they welcome history. This way you wont have to pay money to keep it running, they do, unless you want to donate to them.

    Thanks for the quick responce! I was just responding to the post. I saw your email and wasnt really looking to send that. I have over 6000 emails in this one and many get hidden.

  4. Yes, Angela, the hits on the main site will go down over time, that’s why I built the newsletter site. It was supposed to be a place where people could come and interact, creating an ongoing dialogue about the park. But, no one seems interested. That’s OK. I tried.

    The best way to find out where the park is located, is to click the link on the first page, “Not familiar with the region? To view a map of Rock Point Nature Area and the surrounding area, please click here.” You can zoom out on the map as far as you need to see where it is in relation to you.

    As far as seeing anything there, nothing is left. The only real remains are the concrete lagoon for the shoot-the-chutes ride, some trails, and a few scattered bricks. Unless you know where things were located, and can find the traces, you wouldn’t have thought anything was ever there. It’s just woods. That’s why I thought it was so important to build the site… to preserve the knowledge people had about what was once there. I meet people there occasionally for guided tours of the area. When you have someone to show you where things were, it’s easy to imagine the park in its glory.

    If you guys are ever in the area, let me know and maybe we can meet there.

    Wikipedia can’t support the format and content on the site. It requires space that has PHP support, as well as MySQL database availability. Believe me, I’ve been developing websites for many years, and the way the site is set up is the only way it will work. Thanks for the suggestion, though.

    Care,

    Bruce

  5. Hi, this site is awesome. I would love to take a tour of the area. Do you still do that? Please advise. Thanks, Beth Hazen

  6. Yes, Beth. Feel free to contact me to make arrangements.

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