|Winery Sign ©MMSikes|
|"Pond View" ©Mary Montague Sikes|
As I watch New Kent grow and develop, I think about our little town that is naturally scenic with three rivers forming most of its boundaries. At the turn of the 20th Century, it was a thriving recreational destination with the Terminal Hotel, located on the York River peninsula point, attracting numerous tourists. Many came from Richmond by train and some eventually boarded a steamer en route to Baltimore. It is a magical history that can easily become a writer's delight. When the hotel burned, the waterfront magic stopped and has never been restored.
In 1914, a paper mill was built on the edge of the Pamunkey River and became a part of the scenery there. The mill, mostly the Chesapeake Corporation through the years but now RockTenn, is celebrating its 100th anniversary this weekend. It is not so scenic, except when viewed at night, but it has brought money into the town. That money has paid for an excellent school system that is one of the best in the state of Virginia.
Still, when I look at the scenic developments in New Kent County, I wonder, why not our little town as well? After all, we've got scenery. Perhaps we need a winery here, too.