About Us

The Open Road Project exists to spread kindness and meet the needs of strangers. We travel in a 1979 GMC Vanguard named Lily. These are our stories.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Elkins, West Virginia: The City of Dreams

During any travel day, I always catch myself thinking how neat it is that you can start a day with a delicious Porch SmoothieTM in a familiar place and by the evening you can be transported to what seems like a world away. We made the decision that the small town of Elkins, West Virginia, would be our home for the night. The question of where exactly "home" would be "parked" had yet to be answered. Over the past three years of Open Road trips, a general philosophy has been developed for when we arrive at a new location. First, make an effort to meet people (anybody and everybody), next have a good attitude, and lastly, don't say no to any opportunity, and VOILA! Things will happen.

So that's what we did. We cruised the streets of Elkins, looking for something... anything. The town was dead. However, as we rounded the bend after a few minutes and a gallon of fuels worth of searching, we decided to park in the lot across from the the first group of people we saw. Lily is our go-to conversation starter and five minutes later, after asking the folks if they knew of anyone in town that would be able to put us to good use, one man, Duke, offered each of us his card. At first we were confused, but then it happened. Duke Talbot, PHd ........Mayor. Three years after a dream for The Open Road Project, we crossed yet another thing off our TORP bucket list:

42. Meet the mayor of a small town.

Not only did he hook us up with a great parking lot to spend the night (City Hall), he pointed us in the direction of two local establishments where we would be able to meet and bless a few good folks. That night, before hunkering down in our extremely well insulated RV (sarcasm*), we indulged at a local hotspot, Gino's Pizza. Our server Krystal was wonderful, and we sure enjoyed those American prices!

The following morning, we visited the Hometown Cafe and worked a scheme with our very helpful and delightful server to to cover the meals of all the folks inside the restauraunt. The owner, Barbara, caught wind of or plan and soon came to hang out with us at our table. She share with us her love for random acts of kindness, shared some stories and passed along two bags full of baked goods, on the house! Our breakfast at the Hometown Cafe proved to be a great success. We then once again filled Lily up with gas at the local Sunoco and began the hour drive to Spruce Knob!

Home is where you park it,
The Boys

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