Meetings: Holiday Inn - Thursdays at 12:00pm-1:15pm


Rotary Club of Martinsburg - Martinsburg WV / Grapevine  / October 9, 2014 – Meeting Roundup – Capon Springs & Farms

October 9, 2014 – Meeting Roundup – Capon Springs & Farms


Jonathan Bellingham represents three generations of the Austin family, which celebrates their 82nd season as stewards of Capon Springs & Farms in Hampshire County. For the last 28 years he has served as the Marketing and Recreation Manager, hosting families, groups and individuals at their historic resort getaway.

After a fire destroyed the Grand Mountain House at Capon Springs in 1911, this 19th century resort lay quiet until it was resurrected by Lou and Virginia Austin in 1932. At that time, Lou was a distributor for Capon Springs Water in Philadelphia. After the owner of the Spring and bottling facility was unable to pay his taxes, the property was seized. In an attempt to recover the taxes owed, the Spring, bottling plant and several hundred acres were put up for auction at the Courthouse in Romney.

Along with the bottling facilities and healthy spring water, Lou and Virginia acquired the remnants of a once-thriving turn-of-the-century resort. Gradually through the help of hard-working co-workers, the repair and rebuilding began. Electricity came to the Capon Springs area. Weekends saw friends coming, who then told their friends and the circle grew.

Lou and Virginia’s faith and caring laid the foundation for the welcoming atmosphere felt by both guests and co-workers. Lou eventually recorded these experiences in several books, including three for children, all of which are still in print fifty years later. The spirits of founders Lou and Virginia Austin provide a safe haven of peace and rest, which continues into the fourth generation of Austin families.

You, your family and friends can enjoy great food and outdoor fun while making lasting friendships. Capon’s 19th century architecture and town square layout, combined with its camp-like informal atmosphere, creates the feeling that you have somehow stepped back in time to a quieter, gentler era. Guests describe their visits to their all-inclusive mountain resort, situated on over 4,700 acres of WV wilderness, as coming home.

The days at Capon flow around made-from-scratch meals with ingredients fresh from their farm, which begin with the ringing of the dinner bell. In between meals, Capon offers plenty to do – golf, swimming, shuffleboard, badminton, tennis, hiking, fishing, reading, “porching”, enjoying a relaxing treatment at our spa or napping in one of our hammocks….

And nature’s gifts of woodlands and water provide the perfect setting… clean air, the night sky full of stars, the morning songs of the birds and the evening sounds of tree frogs and cicadas. The spring water, known for centuries for its healing qualities, is fed to all the guest rooms, drinking fountains, kitchens, and even to the outdoor pool and to their Hygeia Bath House and Spa.

Learn more about this Hampshire County resort at the meeting this week.


James Rumsey Technical Institute

Donna Van Metre, director and principal of the James Rumsey Technical Institute, began by thanking us for sending her to Australia as an exchange student back in the 80’s.

Rumsey has both adult and high school students working towards degrees in the trades. They can study everything from welding to surgical technology. Most of their students go immediately into jobs that pay well (truck drivers start at $45,000/year) and are satisfying.

Rumsey trains policemen, graphic designers, electricians, automobile mechanics, massage therapists, and computer technicians.


Answer to last week’s question:

The Declaration for Rotarians in Businesses and Professions encourages Rotarians to uphold the highest possible ethical standards in their business and professional activities. They are urged to adhere to fairness and honesty in all business dealings and to consider their vocation as another opportunity to serve.

This week’s question:

When I joined Rotary, we met in the Peking Restaurant at the Gateway Inn (Shenandoah Hotel). When did we move to our present meeting place?

Our two student guests from Spring Mills High School were Kara Iden and Jonathan McGuire.

Fred Hollida brought our only two guests—Trevor Phadden, staff accountant at Cox Hollida & Professionals; and Clyde Young, also a staff accountant at Cox Hollida & Professionals.

We have major sponsors for the Eastern Panhandle high schools, but we still need major sponsors for the Bob Elmer Sports Breakfast. If you can’t be a major sponsor, at least buy a ticket for $15. If you can’t attend, donate the ticket back to the club and it will go to a kid from the Boys & Girls Club.

The new member orientation is set for October 9th at 4:30 at the Holiday Inn. All new members are required to attend one of these sessions before you have a full membership. It’s a chance to learn more about Rotary and our club. There are 11 new members who should attend. All other interested members are invited, also.

RLI (Rotary Leadership Institute) is being held in Hagerstown on November 15th. Robin Zanotti and Ryan Perks have signed up for it, but we need more members to go. Right now there might not be enough Rotarians signed up to hold it in Hagerstown, which means people might have to go to State College. This is an excellent way to learn about Rotary International and the District. If you have hopes at all of moving through the chairs or if you are on the board of directors, you should seriously consider attending. Contact President Chris if you would like to attend.

Roy Young still has some golf tournament videos. If you participated and did not get one of the videos, contact Roy. The same applies if you know someone who participated and did not get a video.

Kevin Knowles won 50/50, but only drew the right to sell tickets this week.