Wilmoth A ‘Thirty Under 30’

Wheeling native Sam Wilmoth has been recognized as one of the top people in the “Thirty Under 30” category by Morgantown magazine.

Wilmoth graduated from West Virgnia University with a master’s degree in social work this year.

He is the son of William and Becky Wilmoth of Wheeling.

Citing Wilmoth’s accomplishments, the magazine article stated, “Sam Wilmoth was a graduate student interning with WELLWVU when he launched the Green Dot Program. Sam was already interested in understanding and stopping episodes of power-based violence – acts like bullying and fights, sexual assault and partner violence – and regularly spoke across campus to spread awareness. The Green Dot, a national program, fit perfectly with his vision.”

The magazine writer explained, “Green Dot shows students how simple actions can prevent situations that lead to power-based personal violence. In order to convince university officials to bring a national certification team to campus to train other leaders, Sam got the ball rolling by providing sexual assault prevention programming to nearly 2,000 students on his own.”

Wilmoth holds a new position with the West Virginia Foundation for Rape Information and Services, a statewide coalition of shelters for survivors of sexual assault.

He continues to work with Green Dot, leading programs on the WVU campus with other trainers, the magazine reported. He also is involved with two bands, FOX Japan and Koko Sing, in Morgantown.

The past two years have been exceedingly busy for Wheeling author Marc Harshman since his appointment as West Virginia’s poet laureate in mid-2012. The busy times continue for the prolific poet, author and storyteller.

Harshman appeared as a special guest on the 30th-anniversary show of the syndicated musical program, “Mountain Stage,” in Charleston last Sunday evening, Dec. 1. The special edition of “Mountain Stage” was broadcast live on West Virginia Public Radio; it also was available for viewing and listening on West Virginia Public Broadcasting’s website.

For the anniversary show, Harshman presented his sesquicentennial poem, “A Song for West Virginia.” Area residents will recall that the Wheeling National Heritage Area Corp. commissioned the poet laureate to write a poem in honor of West Virginia’s sesquicentennial this year. Harshman gave the first readings of “A Song for West Virginia” in both Charleston and Wheeling during the West Virginia sesquicentennial festivities on June 20. He has read it again on other occasions in Wheeling.

A commemorative printed edition of “A Song for West Virginia” is available for purchase in the shop at the Wheeling Artisan Center.

If you’re in the mood for seasonal concerts, holiday programs and festive fun, you have a myriad of choices available in the Wheeling area this week through the New Year. A perusal of the articles in today’s Life section provides a good indication of the wealth of celebratory offerings awaiting area residents this holiday season.

Even as representatives of area churches and organizations complete plans for Christmas events, an ongoing committee in Wheeling has begun meeting to map out activities for the observance of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. ‘s birthday in mid-January.

Dr. Helen Faso, a faculty member at Wheeling Jesuit University, is coordinating the committee’s work for the 2014 observance.

A reader shared a favorable review, published in the Pittsburgh City Paper earlier this year, of a new little restaurant run by a former Belmont County resident on Pittsburgh’s North Side.

Lola Bistro, located on North Avenue in the city’s West Allegheny neighborhood, is operated by chef Michael Barnhouse; his wife, Yelena, and a full-time employee.

The restaurant review stated, “Barnhouse, who grew up in St. Clairsville, Ohio, previously worked on the West Coast, and was a former executive chef for Wolfgang Puck. Since then, he has moved to Pittsburgh to be closer to family.”

With a headline reading, “A Good Start,” the newspaper opined that “after one year, Lola (is) quietly making its mark on local food scene.”

According to the reviewer, “the menu offers more than a dozen tantalizing options.”

When Wheeling author and history buff John Bowman shared information from his new book, “The Wheeling Stogie,” for Lunch With Books at the Ohio County Public Library in Wheeling Tuesday, Dec. 3, one tidbit elicited expressions of “eeewww” and “yuck” from some audience members.

Bowman cited an article titled “What Becomes of the Cigar Butts Gathered in the Streets?” that appeared in the July 27, 1882 edition of the Philadelphia Weekly Democratic Statesman. He quoted the newspaper as stating, “The nicotine-soaked stumps, the remnants of ‘Wheeling Stogies,’ are gathered from the gutters, washed and spread out to dry. A day or so later they are crumbled into shreds and allowed to dry 24 hours before being packed in flour barrels and shipped to New York where a barrel of this stump tobacco is worth two dollars and a half and sells to the manufacturers of cigarettes and chewing tobacco.”

That is certainly one of the best arguments against smoking that I’ve ever heard!

Linda Comins can be reached via email at: