Story by Chris Graham
It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
That’s what Hank Zimmerman decided before he asked his wife’s permission to commit their nest egg to purchase an Internet domain name.
But it wasn’t just any old domain name that had come available.
“There is only one ShenandoahValley.com. To me, it was like winning the lottery,” said Zimmerman, who launched a user-friendly website at the address in July.
Among the site’s highlights are links to segments of the “Road Trip to History” series featuring several Shenandoah Valley towns that has aired over-the-air on PBS, an easy-to-use roadmap, oodles of information about local attractions and even broadcasts of the weekly “Augusta Free Press Show.”
He really does seem to have it all – from text to video to audio.
“When I envisioned this website, I had a very clear idea of what I wanted it to be,” Zimmerman said. “I envisioned somebody standing in Washington, D.C., and getting a warm and fuzzy about Shenandoah, and what was that? And the things that came back to me were definitely history, the Civil War – I mean, that’s really a major draw for this area.
“Arts – the Shenandoah Valley is like a light that attracts moths, in my opinion. Artists are all over – it’s just an incredible array of talent. And of course, visits. One reality to the Valley is when people get here, they don’t know how to get around. It’s not laid out like the beach, where there’s one big long strip.”
On the Web
Chris Graham is the executive editor of The Augusta Free Press.