Once again, the Roadkill Cookoff and Autumn Harvest Festi- val in Marlinton, sponsored by the Pocahontas County Chamber of Commerce, has come and gone.  This year the rains came, but that didn’t dampen the spirits of all the attendees, vendors, craft-ers and volunteers. 
With an estimated 10,000 to 12,000 people in attendance, it was a fantastic showcase day for Pocahontas County and the people that call her home. 
We had 93 vendors lining the streets, absolutely great music by Mudhole Control, the Black Mountain Bluegrass Boys, and the Bing Brothers with Jake Krack.  We also had the third annual West Virginia Biscuit Bake-off, sponsored by Hudson Cream Flour and Elk River Inn and Restaurant. 
I saw so many people enjoying the festivities and heard nary a dissenting word about anything, even as the rain dripped from their clothing. 
The festival has grown so large that this year we tried some new things and some new locations.  With the expansion of the festival we spread out all over the town and will continue to tweak the layout and the festivities in years to come.
I want to take this opportunity to thank the myriad number of volunteers who work so hard to make this day the success that it is.  Their dedication, and long hours standing in the streets, are the backbone of this operation, and made it a festival of which we can all be proud.  I can’t thank you enough. 
I also want to recognize a few people who work all year long to organize and plan this event.  Their dedication to detail shows in the flawless execution of the event and the fantastic organization of the schedules, set up and tear down. 
Ben Wilfong was this year’s Committee Chairman and did a fantastic job, along with his committee – Paula Garretson, who managed the cooks, Bill Jordan, who managed the volunteers, Malinda Meck and Selina King, who managed the orders, money and set-up, Linda Adams, Barbara Lay and Selina, who managed the vendors, and Linda Simmons, who managed the notices and kept us all sane.  These people did much more than what I’ve listed here.  They worked together as a team and met every challenge. 
I’m so proud of all of you. 
I also want to thank Cara Rose for her work organizing the Biscuit Bake-off, and Gil Willis and the Elk River Inn and Restaurant for aiding in its success.  It is such a great addition to the Roadkill Cookoff.  Of course, without the help of the Convention and Visitors Bureau and Mayor Sam Felton and the Town of Marlinton, we couldn’t do what we do. 
The entire Chamber of Commerce Board, and each and every person who volunteered their time to this event is owed a great deal of gratitude.  You should all stand proud of what you have accomplished.
I also want to thank the businesses that sponsor this great event.  These businesses keep your family and friends employed, bring service to the community and are always willing to support the activities that we all enjoy.  Thank you Shentel, Mon Power (First Energy), Dominion Resources, Pendleton Community Bank, Citizens Bank of WV, Pocahontas Memorial Hospital and Snowshoe Mountain.
The Chamber of Commerce is here to help all businesses in the county, for as these businesses succeed so the people of the county succeed.  And as the people succeed, the county flourishes.  So goes the vision of this group of dynamic people:
 “Promoting a progressive, sustainable business climate for our members through development, networking and education, in order to enhance both business and residential environments as we preserve our unique culture.”
 Business is in Our Nature
 Prosperity, success and partnership are our ultimate goals for our membership – both in their business and personal life. We understand that these work hand-in-hand, and that a happy business owner contributes immensely to a satisfying business life.
Our goal is to help both succeed.