New Geocaching Restrictions

No Geocaching

A new law was passed by the state of South Carolina and signed by the governor on June 2 that places significant restrictions on geocaching activities in Department of Natural Resources lands, including wildlife management areas and heritage preserve areas. This law seems to have passed under the radar of local geocaching organizations, and hasn’t gotten much discussion – until now.

The new law states the following (and I’m copying this directly from the USCG website as edited):

Section 50 11 2200 (C)

(C) The following acts or conduct are prohibited and shall be unlawful on all wildlife management areas, heritage preserves, and all other lands owned by the department; provided, however, the department may promulgate regulations allowing any of the acts or conduct by prescribing acceptable times, locations, means, and other appropriate restrictions not inconsistent with the protection, preservation, operation, maintenance, and use of such lands:

(30) geocaching;

(E) A person violating this section is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not less than twenty five dollars nor more than two hundred dollars or be imprisoned for not more than thirty days, or both.

In addition to the posting on the Upstate Geocacher’s website there have been several discussions on Facebook. So far most of the discussions have been level-headed and not reactionary. Most are recognizing it for what it is – an attempt to regulate all manner of activities on DNR lands. Notice the number (30) next to the word “geocaching”. This is just one activity in a long list that includes hiking, trapping, target shooting, and a variety of other things. If anything, it’s a recognition of geocaching as a possible activity that might take place on DNR lands. The phrase that tends to get over looked in that passage is the following:

provided, however, the department may promulgate regulations allowing any of the acts or conduct by prescribing acceptable times, locations, means, and other appropriate restrictions not inconsistent with the protection, preservation, operation, maintenance, and use of such lands:

This simply means that DNR would like to regulate these activities, and not ban them outright. Continue reading “New Geocaching Restrictions”

R. I. P. Shadow

This morning I got a call from Laura that I didn’t want to receive. She had taken our old cat, Shadow, to our vet. We had feared the worst, and those fears were confirmed by the vet’s prognosis – complete kidney failure. The only humane thing to do was to put him to sleep. Shadow … Continue reading R. I. P. Shadow

Hope School Dedication

Hope School

Saturday I attended the dedication of the Hope School Community Center located on Hope Station Road near Prosperity, SC. This historic school is one of the few survivors of nearly 500 Rosenwald schools constructed in South Carolina between 1917 and 1932. Hope School served grades 1-8 in the African-American community for 28 years, from 1926 – 1954.

In the early 1900’s Junius Rosenwald was president of Sears Roebuck, and was instrumental in the development of their famous catalog. Rosenwald became interested in the state of education in the rural south, and developed a set of plans for schools that could be ordered and build easily, similar to the house plans that had been available through the Sears catalog. Rosenwald also provided funding for for many of the schools, targeting his efforts toward African-American communities in the south.

Hope School

The Hope School was a two-room school built in 1925 on land donated by the Hope family. James H. Hope was state superintendent of schools from 1922-1946, and spearheaded many projects to reduce school funding disparities between wealthy and poor counties.

Continue reading “Hope School Dedication”

Black Forest German

I had decided to ride up toward Hendersonville and Asheville for a Sunday drive. While driving through Hendersonville I spotted Haus Heidleberg, and it reminded me of the hole that had been left in Greenville’s ethnic cuisine since the closing of Haus Edleweiss last year. That also got me craving German food. It was too … Continue reading Black Forest German

Jocassee – Paddler’s Paradise

I really wanted to get out on my new boat. With the entire day available for paddling, I decided to head up to Lake Jocassee. I had paddled Jocassee many times, but our excursions were always rather limited. I was stoked to get out on a boat that could actually get me somewhere and see parts of the lake I had not seen before. This turned into a review of a paddling destination as much as a review of the new boat.

It seems that I’m always starting off in a fog. That’s been more physical than metaphysical lately, with a foggy start to last week’s Edisto trip, and now with fog blanketing the Upstate. Most of it had burned off by the time I arrived at the upper boat ramp at Devil’s Fork State Park. Continue reading “Jocassee – Paddler’s Paradise”

The Curative Powers of the Edisto

This was not a good sign. Pinpoints of light danced across my vision as I checked last minute e-mail. The truck was loaded, and in a few minutes I would be heading south to Sumter to spend the night with my brother, Stephen. In the morning we would join the band of miscreants known as Lowcountry Unfiltered for another epic journey down the Edisto River. A migraine headache was the last thing I needed.

I had taken some preventative medicine and decided to go for it. The drive down was interesting, as various extremities alternately numbed and chilled. As long as I kept my eye on the road and didn’t look down the visual aura stayed to the edges. I managed to keep a couple of plain McDonalds hamburgers down and make it safely to Steve’s.

The day broke full of deep fog. We still had a two-hour drive to the put-in, and we speculated about how cool it would be to paddle through this. We might even stumble upon some ancient civilization, kept hidden until the mist burned off. Given our knowledge of the area, this was a real possibility. Continue reading “The Curative Powers of the Edisto”

Rough Week in Lake Wobegon

Warning: Rant ahead

I have a dream. I don’t know if it’s even possible. For once, I would like to place a large order of computers, have them be priced appropriately, be delivered on time, and work like they are supposed to when we get them set up. Is that really too much to ask?

This summer instead of purchasing HP computers we bought Dells. Pricing and support arrangements through our local system integrator were the main reasons for the switch. Also, we have had TONS of problems with HP products over the past few years. Last year deliveries were late and we had the perennial problem with the drivers not wanting to do an inside delivery. To compound matters, they tried to overcharge us for half a million dollars AND tried to tack late fees onto that as we worked to get the price sorted out.

That was last year. This summer Dell has let use experience even more different levels of frustration. Our first delivery had the driver refusing to do what was asked. That got ironed out quickly, and we didn’t have any more problems. Then came the deployment. When we tried to boot up the computers, we found that we had purchased 850 bricks – the computers wouldn’t work. Continue reading “Rough Week in Lake Wobegon”

Spartanburg County Instructional Technology Academy

This week we held the kick-off sessions for the Spartanburg County Instructional Technology Academy (SCITA) at USC-Upstate. The three-day workshop was the start of a graduate course that is funded by an E2T2 grant that Spartanburg school districts 1, 2, 5, and 7 had applied for and received. In addition to the graduate course, participants would receive and be trained in emerging technology for their classrooms.

The first day began with an overview of the program and an introduction to the course by Dr. Jimmy Pryor, who will be the instructor. Danielle Stengle from CSI Outfitters then spoke to the group about using technology for special needs students. Continue reading “Spartanburg County Instructional Technology Academy”