PCDC Minutes

April Minutes

Minutes of April 4, 2024 Monthly Meeting

West Luray Rec Center, Luray, VA

Attendees: Patrick Burns, Deborah Costolloe, Sherry Ford, Tom Ford, Greg Gray, Penny Gray, Skip Halpern, Bill King, David Kinsey, Miles Morimoto, Gail Price, Sandra Schaberl, Bette Schmidt, and Ray Snader

Guests: Chris Burton (Kaine Campaign), Kym Crump (6th Distict Chairperson),  Jayne Docherty (Rockingham Co.), Elena Druden (Winchester/Frederick Co.), Sara Finn (Community Works), Roger Graham, Rodney Grandon (Winchester/Frederick Co.), Jackie Masella (Warren Co.), Ken Mitchell (candidate for U.S. Rep.), Kris Nelson (Warren Co.), Ford Peatross, Joe Petralia, Patricia Petralia, Tony Reynolds (Clarke Co.), Brad Skipper (Shenandoah Co.), Bob W. Smith (Shenandoah Co.), Wayne Truax, and Kay (?)

Call to Order at 6:32 p.m.

  1. Minutes and Treasurer’s Report –The minutes of the March meeting were approved. The monthly beginning balance on March 1, 2024, was $12,640.18. The ending balance on March 31 was 10,996.77.
  2. PCDC Organization –
  3. 2024 PCDC Annual Dinner Fundraiser – Annual Dinner Committee Chairperson Bonnie Anthony needs volunteers to be on this committeeThe intended first meeting to be called was miscommunicated, so a planning meeting will be called soon.  A sign-up sheet was sent around and she will call a meeting soon. It is likely the location has changed to the Graves Center on Main St., Luray. Date, theme, menu, and speaker search are still to be decided.
  4. Headquarters- The newly rented 2024 Headquarters has been set up and hours and a press release will soon be coming.
  5. Call to Caucus – Page County can send a delegate to the 6th District Caucus. Individuals would commit to two meetings, May 18 in Lexington, and June 22 in Richmond. Miles Morimoto shared a link for those interested in the email announcing the monthly meeting.
  6. Rural Retreat – will be held at Natural Bridge on May 3-5
  1. 6th Congressional District Inter-County Discussions

The purpose of these discussions and of inviting everyone together at this PCDC meeting was to determine the scope of what we need to focus on and what opportunities there might be to work together and share efforts across the district to get our candidates elected.

The challenges include a tight timeframe of having only 2-3 months to get to maximum efficiency and effectiveness. It is hoped that by July everyone will be able to operate at optimal momentum so that we can get name recognition for Ken Mitchell as our candidate for U.S. Representative, and so spread our message to more than Democrats.

Some notes from each county:

  1. Warren County– (Kris Nelson)
  • The VAN is up and running {Call DPVA to embed in it, can pull “Mobilize” into it for Vote Builder}
  • Their Chamber sets up a table at every event
  • Voter Registration – hosting an Earth Day event and setting up there {Go to the Virginia Election website to be able to register more than 20 people – learn the rules}
  • Partnered with NAACP that can get into schools even though the Democratic can not
  • Organizing Early Voting – have people sitting at the poll site, just like on Election Day, but every day during early voting
  • Door knocking, texting, phone campaigning, sending postcards
  • TikTok stories featuring local Valley residents talking about what is important to local rural and small town lives. These will run in August
  • To the broader 6th District, setting up a calendar of campaign events
  • There is a Google Drive set up for the CD6 – contact Lynlee Thorn; access can be shared with local Dem parties
  • When knocking doors, include many more than just strong or assumed Dems; knock Independents too
  1. Clark County– (Tony Reynolds)
  • They have a display advertising campaign of $12,000 worth of ads. They share artwork and copy so not every committee/group has to start from scratch
  • Suggests that every committee has at least one person to keep an eye on what’s happening in Ken Mitchell’s campaign
  • Access El Tiempo Latino, by Washington Post; can find zip codes for election and target market in each county (Senator Tim Kaine works with them too)
  • Banners hung to honor Hometown Heroes veterans touches on common ground we all have
  1. Winchester/Frederick County– (Rod Grandon)
  • Feels like starting from scratch here
  • Working to highlight Democrat accomplishment on the county board
  • Cutting and pasting to make it more efficient to submit letters and maintain tone and topic
  • Facing a strong right wing group on the Chamber of Commerce that sponsors candidate forums, but Democrats are showing up and getting votes – It’s important to show up and to try to have a candidate for each open position
  1. Shenandoah County- (Brad Skipper)
  • They are part of “Contest Every Race” (CER) that is helping in rural areas.
  • The Facebook page has had thousands of hits per month
  • they publish 15-20 commentary pieces per year in the local newspaper
  • they have sent thousands of text messages and 10,000 postcards
  • On X (Twitter), they troll Ben Cline daily – “we need to stand up, beating Republicans at their own game; we’re effective”
  1. Page County– (Penny Gray)
  • Page County Treasurer Penny Gray shared a campaign strategy that she calls the “Friend and Family Letter” that has been effective for her. This approach writes a personal letter, and makes a personal connection between the writer and the candidate, sharing with voters among friends and family what is important and desirable about voting for the candidate. This could be effective to reach many voters in the 6th Congressional District, especially to promote Ken Mitchell as our candidate for U.S. Representative against incumbent Ben Cline. This is important to build name recognition and support for Mitchell.
  • Suggestion: Get at least one person in each committee to identify participants. Ask each participant to commit to at least 5, preferably 10 letters, and to possibly think of 5-10 more people to write letters
  • Penny offered an example of a letter. So having a template that could then be personalized would be helpful.
  1. Campaigns
  2. Ken Mitchell for U.S. Representative – Ken spoke to the PCDC and visiting county representatives that he entered this race to win it. He is focusing on and working for strong Democratic turnout, good Independent turnout, and moderate Republican turnout. His messaging is moving from left to center, as he wants to meet all types of voters across rural areas and to demonstrate that we have much more in common than what holds us apart.
  • The current reality of the campaign is fundraising. Mitchell projects he needs $1.2 million to win this seat.
  • Needed: individuals or groups to host meet and greet fundraising events for Ken Mitchell, specifically outside of Harrisonburg. They want to go where the voters are.
  1. Tim Kaine for Senate– Campaign staffer Chris Burton said that the Kaine Campaign can help overall. Kaine will help reach the strong Democrats, and Mitchell can lift up the committees that are doing well. The question is how to structure those committees who are not so strong within the 6th CD.
  2. Communications
  3. “Community Works”– 
  • The Luray Town Council approved the $2500 request for the Shenandoah River water testing. The total raised so far is $2750. The hope is to increase the number of testing sites from 5 to 7.
  • The water testing demonstration and river boat launch clean up will take place at the Alma Boat Launch on Saturday, April 27, from11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
  • Sara Finn also announced that Good Deeds Day was cancelled by its organizers. Community Works will take it on.
  • In May, Community Works will partner with Bethel Baptist Church to do a fish fry, with the purpose of raising money for the Rec to buy supplies.

Meeting adjourned at 8:28 p.m.

Next monthly meeting – May 2, 2024, 6:30 p.m. at The Rec in Luray, VA

Respectfully submitted,

Sandra Schaberl, Secretary, PCDC

May Agenda

Agenda for PCDC May Monthly Meeting

  1. MINUTES APPROVAL
  2. FINANCIAL APPROVAL
  3. ELECTIONS:
  4. Inter County activities
  5. Rural Retreat
  6. Delegates
  7. Fundraising event for Ken Mitchell
  8. PCDC: Headquarters opening, schedule, promotion
  9. Website updates
  10. PCDC Annual fundraising event
  11. COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT
  12. CW Status

NEW BUSINESS:

  • May 2nd, 6:30 pm, Location: the Rec Center 630 W. Main St., Luray

APRIL RECAP:

  • Ken Mitchell speaking in Woodstock
  • Tim Kaine visits Luray for his book signing at the Mimslyn Inn then dropped by our PCDC Headquarters
  • Rural Retreat
  • Sharing of information Bath County, Shenandoah, Warren
  • Graphics
  • VAN Training
  • Established account access for PCDC VAN access
  • Postcard “Friends” by Penny Gray created, planning distribution and offering to other counties
  • PCDC Headquarters opening scheduled for May 5th
  • New signs printed for the headquarters and Rt. 340
  • Rural Ground Game billboard on Rt. 211 leaving Luray
  • Held first meeting on PCDC Annual Fundraiser scheduled for June 30th, Don Beyer keynote speaker, Ken Mitchell speaking before Don Beyer
  • Establishing an Endorsement program for Ken Mitchell
  • PCDC ActBlue donations up and running on pcdems.org website
  • PCDC Annual fundraising ticketing on ActBlue up and running on pcdems.org website

Account Report

COMMUNITY WORKS UPDATE
March Updates:

  • Community Works and Friends of the Shenandoah River (FOSR)- Friends of the Shenandoah River is the non-profit that helps us all by testing and publishing E. coli levels in the river. During the summer, the Friends test 2 sites in Page County along with 13 other sites downstream.
  • We have spoken with the Luray Town Council and the Board of Supervisors seeking funding to expand the number of testing sites in Page. Community Works and the Friends of the Shenandoah River have developed a “Friends’ Raiser” to raise awareness, volunteer support, and funds.
  • See our discussion with the Luray Town Council: (Skip ahead to minute 40 of the video) https://www.youtube.com/live/_pYaBDlm3TE?feature=shared
  • Luray Town Council approved $2,500 in funding support to FOSR.
  • Response from the Page County Board of Supervisors-coming soon.
  • NEW: Interview with Page Valley News on YouTube: https://youtu.be/JuhX-CmdRTI?si=RrocYSvRTp-Rj7EQ
  • Action item: Deadline: May 3rd- Resident letters to BOS supporting the “Friends Raiser”
  • Boat Landing/ River Clean Up Review: Saturday, April 27th from 11-2 at the Alma Boat Landing in Stanley.
  • Approximately 25 volunteers removed a truck bed full of trash. Including: 2 and a half pairs of boots, a toaster, trash can, window fan, tote, tire, barbed wire, and the usual suspects; cigarette butts, cans, glass, fishing line, metals. Joined by the Friends of the Shenandoah River for an E. coli testing demonstration and the Shenandoah Riverkeeper for a river safety presentation in partnership with Trash Free Shenandoah.

Happenings in May:

Volunteer support at PCDC Roadside Clean Up- Volunteers will join Page County Democrats for their upcoming biannual adopt a highway roadside clean up on rt 340 on Saturday May 11th 8-10am. Volunteers needed: 2-4

Supply Drive benefiting the Rec partnering with Bethel Baptist Church- Bethel Baptist Church is holding a Fish Fry on Saturday May 18th from 11am to 3pm. At the same time/location Community Works will be collecting supplies from the community benefiting the Rec. For a lunch ticket call:(540) 743-9452 – 18 Carillon Drive Luray Volunteers needed: 2-3

Poem Contest- Community Works is sponsoring a tree on the Hawksbill Greenway. Submit a poem to be displayed on the Community Works plaque. Have your poem and support of Community Works immortalized on the Greenway! Write a short 3 line poem about nature and send it to our email: PageCommunityWorks@gmail.com
Poem example at: https://hawksbillgreenway.org/news/join-in-our-poet-tree-trail/

Community Partnership for Good Deeds Day- We are supporting our infirm neighbors that need a helping hand in May. We have met with the client of Page One to get an assessment and overview of their needs. Action item: Tell us if you know anyone or businesses willing to help us complete any of these client needs by donating supplies, lending tools, or just volunteering your time: Yard work- trimming bushes away from the home, mulching, deck staining, replacing an old ramp to a storage shed, installing weather stripping around doors, screen door repair. Volunteers needed 4-6

Volunteer Support at Free Market Friday’s with the Community Gardens

We would like to have 2-4 volunteers to support this ongoing effort through the growing season. Volunteers can either help with the market or help in the garden to complete garden chores.
May 31st 10-1 Luray Garden- Plant swap & Free Market Friday
June 28th 9-12 Shenandoah Garden
July 26th 9-12 Stanley Garden
August 30th 9-12 Luray Garden

End of May or June: Be on the lookout for information about our next postcard writing gathering.

How to help: Volunteer with us. Connect Community Works with a local group that you have personal connections with. Alert Community Works if you hear of events serving community needs.

Facebook Action Item: Like, Follow, and Share: Community Works 4Page and the National Community Works FB: Community Works
Sharing is caring: Invite your friends and family.

Have an idea that might fit in with Community Works? Let’s chat! PageCommunityWorks@gmail.com

PCDC Cleanup
PC DEMS Banner
PCDC Election Sign
Road Sign in Page County

Page County Democratic Committee

Minutes of March 7, 2024 Monthly Meeting

West Luray Rec Center, Luray, VA

Attendees: Patrick Burns, Tom Dawson, Sherry Ford, Tom Ford, Skip Halpern, Clyde Humphrey, Betty Karp, Herbert Karp, Bill King, Lucia King, David Kinsey, John Mayeux, Miles Morimoto, Lori Painter, Sandra Schaberl, Ray Snader, and Kathleen White

Guests: Bonnie Anthony, Sara Finn, Pat and John Sullivan

Call to Order at 6:38 p.m.

Minutes and Treasurer’s Report –The minutes of the February meeting were approved. The monthly beginning balance on February 1, 2024, was $12,516.59. The ending balance on February 29 was $12,640.18. Income for the month included membership dues and a $100 donation, while expenses included rent for meeting space, and web hosting fees for three years.

Elections
The petition drive for Senator Tim Kaine to be on the ballot to retain his seat in Election 2024, and now adding Ken Mitchell too, is currently happening. The drive appears to be progressing at a slower pace than hoped. The deadline is March 21st to get papers back to the candidates.

Meet Tim Kaine in Page County – PCDC has arranged with Senator Tim Kaine for him to speak and greet the public at the Luray VFW on Saturday, March 9th, from 2-4 pm. Please join us and spread the word.
HQ Status – Contract will be signed this week for a space at 44 E. Main St., Luray. The space is a 12 x 12 ft. room, with one side of windows facing the main street. It will be available to us next week.

Regional County Discussions
Chairperson Miles Morimoto is hosting weekly County Committee Chairpersons meetings across some of the 6th Congressional District counties. The focus is to work together to leverage efforts, and also to identify what is working and what isn’t to impact elections and our communities.

PCDC Organization
2024 PCDC Annual Dinner Fundraiser – Annual Dinner Committee Chairperson Bonnie Anthony needs volunteers to be on this committee. A sign-up sheet was sent around and she will call a meeting soon. The location will be at Riverbend Ranch. Date, theme, menu, and speaker search all need to be decided.

PCDC Advocacy Program 
Betty Schmidt is chairperson of this program. She shared objectives and strategy, of choosing issues to advocate for, forming statements that the majority of PCDC members agree to, and posting these on our website.

Strategy includes choosing issues that make a difference to residents of Page County and also have steps that we can take action on and see results. Some issues will be acted upon together with the Page County GOP when we can work to push forward mutually beneficial legislation.

The first issue to advocate for is the Shenandoah River protection and clean up. A draft action statement was shared. The requests that were presented to the Luray Town Council and the Page County Board of Supervisors are still awaiting responses.

A River Clean-up Event to clean up and do sample water testing will be held April 27 at the Alma Boat landing.

Communications

“Community Works”–
Sara Finn reported that Community Works t-shirts are available and more will be ordered

Skip Halpern stated that he felt the benefit of the group that asked the Town Council and the Board of Supervisors for money for the Shenandoah River water testing was that local Democrats initiated the effort, but others have joined, striking a great balance and communicating that to officials

Sara Finn also pointed out that communications were going out on their website, email and Facebook pages, as well as letters to the editor of thePage Valley News and the News and Courier

The PCDC has a new website – Access it at www.pcdems.org – Thank you to Eleanor Ames for the helping to design and manage it

The PCDC ad run in the Page Valley News has begun – we have a great location on the online news forum, and the ads will be changing to keep them updated and fresh

Our vehicles of communication are currently advertising, the bulletin that is emailed after each monthly meeting, the website, and soon to be the HQ.
Meeting adjourned at 7:41 p.m.

Next monthly meeting – April 4, 2024, 6:30 p.m. at The Rec in Luray, VA

Respectfully submitted,

Sandra Schaberl, Secretary, PCDC

PCDC LOGO building a better community

P.O. BOX 401
Luray, VA, 22835

chair@pcdems.org