E-News March 24, 2020

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Urgent E-News! – 24 March 2020
OCTA HQ to Close for 30 Days Due to Citywide Coronavirus Decree
Nominations Sought for OCTA Board
PNTS Issues Pandemic Response Letter to Congress
Download Speaker Videos From Santa Fe Convention
Southern Trails Chapter Invites You to Enjoy Their March Newsletter
Upgrade Your Membership Now For a Wonderful Gift!

OCTA HQ to Close for 30 Days Due to 
Citywide Coronavirus Decree
The greater Kansas City metropolitan area shut down all non-critical businesses at midnight last night (Central time). For at least the next 30 days, OCTA HQ will be closed per city order.

Phone calls will be forwarded to HQ Manager Kathy Conway’s home, but please try to limit those from 9 am to 5 pm Central, Monday through Friday. Staff will have access to email and we’ve all taken work home with us to continue to serve OCTA’s membership to the best of our abilities during these trying times. We will be making more frequent updates here to keep you all engaged.

Thank you all so much for loving our historic trails and continuing to support our mission, through good times and bad. We closed the office last night at 9 pm, Monday, March 23rd. We hope to be back on Wednesday, April 22nd. We will keep you all updated frequently as we learn more. In the interim, we are encouraging our chapters to postpone all events until further notice.

Nominations Sought for OCTA National Board
Nominations are being accepted through April 15, 2020 for election to OCTA’s National Board of Directors. Directors serve for three-year terms and may serve no more than two consecutive terms.

Members of the Board are responsible for setting policies and priorities for the organization and electing officers. They also serve as important liaisons with OCTA chapters.

The term of Board members Cecilia Bell and Chuck Milliken will expire in 2020. Cecilia is completing her second term and is therefore ineligible to run again. Chuck is completing his first term and is eligible for re-election.

Directors are expected to attend two board meetings annually, one of which is held in conjunction with the OCTA Annual Convention. The second, Mid-Year meeting, is held usually in late winter or early spring at rotating locations.

In order to be a candidate for the Board of Directors, all that is required is being an OCTA member in good standing. Please submit a short statement of qualifications and experience, a photograph, and the endorsement of three members of OCTA.

Candidacy papers should be sent to the Nominating and Leadership Committee Chair, Pat Traffas at traffasp@gmail.com or mailed to 6731 W. 108th Terrace, Overland Park, KS 66211-1117.

For more information about the elections process or the position you may contact other members of the Nominations and Leadership Committee who are Duane Iles at 96cruisin@embarqmail.com or Cecilia Bell at cecilialjb@aol.com. Additional information may also be found in the Members area of the OCTA website.

Partnership for the National Trails System 
Issues Pandemic Response Letter to Congress
On Monday, March 23, Partnership for the National Trails System President Barney Scout Mann and Interim Executive Director Karen Crossley sent a three-page letter to the appropriations staff in both the House and Senate, asking them to consider funding for the National Trails System as economic stimulus for trail communities along the nation’s thirty National Scenic and Historic Trails, many of them rural and extremely dependent on tourism dollars for survival.
Quoting from the letter:

“As Congress formulates additional stimulus legislation, we urge it to address impacts to rural, outdoor-related business by:

* Making funding available to hire staff members and local contractors who will address deferred maintenance-related assets on national trails and public lands;

* Making funding available for outdoor recreation/conservation stewardship-related capital construction along national trails and in public land gateway communities, including visitor centers, roads, and bridges;

* Supporting the certification and training for those engaging in conservation stewardship career development via public land agencies and their management partners;

* Promoting the recovery of place-based tourism, particularly related to outdoor recreation”

Download Speaker Videos 
From Santa Fe Convention
If you weren’t able to attend the convention in Santa Fe last September, we recorded all of the speakers. If you attended the convention, you can view all of the videos for free by emailing kconway@indepmo.org for the access code. If you didn’t attend the convention, you can purchase access for $10 per speaker or $60 for all 14 speakers. The link for purchase can be found on our website. Many of us are locked away for weeks due to Coronavirus shut downs, so enjoy some time learning about Southwestern trails!

Speakers and topics include:
  • Doug Dinwiddie – Military Protection Along the Southern Trail
  • François-Marie Patorni – The French Presence in New Mexico
  • Kevin Henson – Cooke’s Wagon Road and Mormon Battalion Routes in New Mexico
  • David Miller – Randolph Marcy: Explorer, Road Builder, and Guide
  • Mark Howe – Archaelogy on New Mexico’s Southern Trail
  • Jim Hardee – Bartolomé Baca and the Trappers
  • Frank Norris – Railroad in Northern New Mexico
  • Larry Francell – J.B.D. Stillman, Civilian Post Surgeon at Fort Lancaster, Texas
  • Peter Leman – Mangas Coloradas
  • Prince McKenzie – Railroads Along the Southern Route
  • Tom Sutak – Traveling to the Gold Fields Along the Southern Route
  • Laura Anderson – Women, the Sick and Others Left Behind
  • Tom Jonas – Kearney’s Trail from Santa Fe to Arizona
  • Richard Melzer – Children on the Santa Fe Trail

Southern Trails Chapter Invites You to 
Enjoy Their March Newsletter  
This newsletter includes highlights from the Yuma Symposium, a trek in the Arizona desert with Gerald Ahnert, and a treasure trove of artifacts stored in an attic in Nogales. Click here to read the Southern Trails newsletter now!
You can join any of our eleven chapters by visiting the OCTA online store.

Upgrade Your Membership or Purchase a Gift Membership Now For a Wonderful Present!
For a limited time, OCTA is encouraging our existing members to “upgrade” their membership. This also makes an excellent gift and we’ll send those gifts to your recipient as a present from you. These free gifts include:

Simply call us at (816) 252-2276 and we will renew your membership at a higher level or simply extend your existing membership for another year past your next renewal date and ship out our “thank yous” immediately. Or, send it as a gift to a friend or family member. Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity; it’s only while supplies last.


Finally, if you’re not already a member, join now at the Emigrant level ($50) and we will send you a copy of your choice of items listed above. Not only that, but as a new member you will get immediate access to every single issue of the Overland Journal dating back to 1982 as well as access to Paper Trail, our incredible genealogy tool that helps you search original trail diaries.
No where else will you find such a comprehensive archive of information related to 19th century western emigration trails. Join now and get immediate access to the nearly 40 years worth of the entertaining and informative Overland Journal! Seventy-eight people have upgraded their membership since we began this program. Won’t you become #79?