Bob-n-Along: Happy St. Patrick's Day and My Thoughts on Downtown Revitalization

By Bob Stealey | March 17, 2017
Today I'll begin with a hearty greeting to you for a most jolly St. Patrick's Day and my best wishes to one and all, whether Irish or not, for a most prosperous and successful remainder of 2017. Thank goodness spring is only three days away!
My first task today, I suppose, would be to mention that this column's purpose is for me to indicate various Clarksburg-area-related issues from an opinion-sourced position rather than from a "feature story" format--sort of a "breeze along with Bob" thing, if you will.
Having briefly explained that little matter of fact, let me point out that the greater Clarksburg area takes in some of the outlying areas of the city, such as the Town of Nutter Fort, the Town of Stonewood and the Town of Anmoore, and the communities of Summit Park, Mount Clare, Wilsonburg, Reynoldsville, Glen Falls, Arlington Addition and other sections.
Generally, I don't include much at all about Bridgeport, since that city has its own online news magazine.
If you have followed my column with any regularity, you'll also know that I've tackled different
subjects of more national and statewide focus, but from a greater Clarksburg point of view. (That's not to presume that I am the voice of Clarksburg.) And to be sure, I'd like to know from present and past residents of greater Clarksburg who are reading this just which topics you would like to have explored.
Perhaps you've mulled it over in your mind, but I believe it's going to be quite interesting to see how things develop as the new Robinson Grand Theater project reaches completion. There's still quite a lot to be accomplished yet. Personally, my hope is that the new facility will become host to some top-flight entertainment for Clarksburg residents and visitors. This might well include some local productions along the lines of some theatrical shows of 25 or more years ago, like "The King and I", "Fiddler on the Roof", "Peter Pan", "Cabaret" and others.
Also, could it be possible that some big-name popular music artists would put in an appearance? Much like Gene Pitney, Bobby Goldsboro, Gary Lewis & The Playboys, Tom Jones, The Byrds and a slew of others--back when rock was really rockin'--at the Nathan Goff Armory in Clarksburg.
The city is definitely in need of a shot in the arm, although of course not the illegal kind such as what has somewhat tainted Clarksburg's reputation in recent months and years. (We could do with far less of that kind, I think you'd agree.) A lively boost of talent would go a long way toward making Clarksburg--and Harrison County--an attractive entity once again.
Hmm, let's see what else is happening in Clarksburg. Television news films have been showing some of the work taking place in the former Dominion Hope (once Hope Gas) building on West Main Street to make way for the new home of the Harrison County Board of Education. Over the years, that has certainly become quite a large structure, much larger than the board's current site, the old Kelly Miller High School building on E.B. Saunders Way. It does make me wonder whether the school board will be able to utilize the entire structure.
Elsewhere, a new municipal credit union building has been completed at the corner of West Pike and South 4th Streets downtown, at the site where the old Candyland once stood. Furthermore, the new state office building has been open and functional for a couple of months now. There are some additional signs of constructive activity in Clarksburg, but having been "out of the loop" for a while, I couldn't name them all.
At any rate, we hope once the Robinson Grand work has been completed and it's time to move in,
the project will receive overwhelming support and patronage from the fine folks of the area.
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Between the time I signed off work on this column and the day of its appearance, the West Virginia
University Mountaineers basketball team will have played its opening-round game of the 2017 NCAA
Basketball Tournament against Bucknell University in Buffalo, New York, and I can only say that
I hope WVU will be looking to play its second-round game against somebody or the other and at
some time or the other on Saturday.
'Wish I could fill in the details for you, but in any case, go-o-o Mountaineers!
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This week's Bible Verses:  "For I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from his love. Death
can't, and life can't. The angels won't, and all the powers of hell itself cannot keep God's love away.
Our fears for today, our worries about tomorrow, or where we are--high above the sky, or in the deepest ocean--nothing will ever be able to separate us from the love of God demonstrated by our Lord Jesus Christ when he died for us."--Romans 8:38-39

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