Pearl S. Buck Home As A Wedding Venue
Marlinton, WV – The Pearl S. Buck House is nestled in the beautiful valleys of Little Levels in Hillsboro. For the Pearl S. Buck Foundation, the setting seems a natural one for a wedding. But to make that idea a reality, they need to do a bit of fundraising, and for that they turned to the Pocahontas County Commission this past Tuesday night. Sue Groves, a Foundation member, explains what led them to the decision.
“The Pearl S. Buck birthplace is in rather dire financial straits,” says Groves, “and the board has been discussing how we can go about helping ourselves, and we’ve come up with some long term plans of how to improve our financial situation and some short term plans.”
She points out that they are not planning to use the interior of the home for weddings, but the surrounding grounds and possibly the Sydenstricker log home nearby.
“This I think is a way that we can not only help ourselves, but it’s a way that we can help the community in general because weddings bring requests for catering, B&B’s [Bed &Breakfast]; you know there are a lot of other expenses that surround weddings,” says Groves. “But we do need to improve some of the facilities at Pearl Buck in order to do that.”
Things like remodeling the kitchen in the Sydensticker house to health dept standards, enclosing the back porch and purchasing a large tent that can be used for a reception area. In order to accomplish all these tasks, Groves says the Foundation is holding fundraising events, including a play about Buck at the Opera House in April, and a croquet match at the Buck house following the Little Levels Heritage fair in June. She says they’ve also been in contact with the group that produces the magazine WV Weddings and they’ll be at the Buck house this summer to do a photo shoot.
Groves estimates they need 10 to 12 thousand dollars for the upgrades. The foundation is asking the Commissioners to commit up to $5000.00 in matching funds, depending on how much they are able to bring in with their fundraisers. The Commissioners took no action on the request, but will add it to the list of contributions they will consider at their first meeting in February.
In other business, the Commissioners again discussed creating a policy for taxable employee benefits. Administrative assistant Sue Helton typed up a policy based on one used by Berkley County, but the Commissioners took no action on adopting a policy as they feel more information is needed.
They also discussed a proposal for renovations or upgrades to the former chair lift entry/exit at the courthouse. Kevin Shaw submitted an estimate of around $14,500.00 to do the work. But that estimate doesn’t include a fee for WYK architect James Swiger to oversee the work. The Commissioners also decided to table this item until more information is available.