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Adams County Report #2

County Website URL: https://adamscountyoh.gov/

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Named after the second President of the United States, Adams County was founded in 1797 and continues to uphold values from that time throughout its communities today. The county has a three-member Board of Commissioners who oversee local departments regarding various issues. Serving all of the regional communities, the Adams County Public Library provides information and services to the wide range of individuals who reside in the area. As the most prominent hospital in the region, the Adams County Regional Medical Center is a main hub for personal medical care in the county. As a claim to fame, Adams County was home to Cowboy Copas, a country singer that passed away in a plane crash with Patsy Cline in 1963. With their wholesome values and various resources, Adams County is a community that takes pride in their history and upholds small town characteristics even through today. The images of their landmarks and establishments portray the feelings that fully encompass the local lifestyles.

Located in Adams County, Hillsboro, Ohio is a small town filled with local businesses and quaint homes. My first pinpoint location dropped me off in front of a classical church beside a Realtors’ office and a local gas station. Traveling a little further down High Street takes one to a bank and a post office. Other local business includes small wholesome restaurants, mom and pop shops, and an old fashioned theater. The street itself appears to be one of the major hubs in the town for daily tasks and activities. Both the fire station and police station are located in this area as well, marking its importance in regards to community services. At the end of the street, there are residential neighborhoods made up of many humble, single story houses surrounding a centrally located water tower. Based on the small town feel and observation of local economics, it can be assumed that Adams County relies heavily on its strong foundation of community values in regards to lifestyle. From their style of living, members of this area’s community seem to value a more simplistic approach to life while enjoying the company of others and the pride that comes from a small town feeling.

Another location in Adams County is Rocky Fork Lake, located just outside of Marshall, Ohio. This area is composed of many small houses on large acres of land. The surrounding area is mostly that of corn fields, which seem to be experiencing the post-fall season seeing as how they are harvested and dull. The lake itself is fairly large and contains a Rocky Fork Lake Marina. In comparison to the town in Hillsboro mentioned above, this area seems to be a lot less industrialized with a focus on agriculture and nature. Because of the abundant resources similar to that of Rocky Fork Lake, it is clear that the Adams County area is one that is influenced heavily by its landmarks and scenery. There were very few towns with a strong sense of industrialization, which goes to show how the people of the county choose to live off of the land and place value in the nature that is their home. It can be assumed that residents in this area are typically more interested in participating in outdoor activities than members of a more developed area.

Adams County is also home to the Tranquility State Wildlife Area and the Serpent Mound Historical Site. The Tranquility State Wildlife Area is a conservation park made up of large amounts of land containing numerous animal species. Serpent Mound Historical Site is a 1,400 foot national historic landmark built by prehistoric cultures. Pike Lake State Park is just another landmark representing the county’s vast array of pinpoints portraying their value of nature. Because they are known on a national level for their varying natural contributions, Adams County shows its dedication to preserving history. Not only are the natural landmarks important to this community, but historical buildings and old fashioned communities are still seen to be present throughout the entire area today. Among their recent news, there were several stories encompassing the conservation of historical sites. The community’s dedication to holding true to their foundation and their respect for the hometown roots clearly characterizes their values and priorities.

Despite the lack of community members present during the Google search, the cars on the streets and the homes around each area upheld the expectation for what would be observed in this area. The cars were very standard in the way that the models were very traditional and there were no vehicles that specifically represented a frivolous lifestyle. Many trucks were seen throughout various scenes, which match well with the idea that Adams County is one that values hard work and home roots. It can be assumed that there were not many individuals present in the pictures because consumerism is not a underlying standard in this area. While you may expect people to be shopping and engaging in town, it makes sense to infer that they are spending time with family in their homes or enjoying nature somewhere uncaptured. Standing in the Southeastern region outside of Cincinnati, Adams County represents everything simple about Ohio. From natural monuments to small towns, the area holds an essence of local comfortability. The resources and members of the community are significant identifiers to Adams County. From my travel experience on Google Earth, I would assume that the county is made up of people who value their land and hold the idea of community close to their hearts. The area appears to be composed of sustainable characteristics and homegrown ideologies.

Imaging appears to be the most popular social media presence for this region. Because of their scenic views and beautiful landscapes, platforms that incorporate pictures accurately depict the importance of this county. With the media uses provided by Instagram and Pinterest, users are able to portray their sense of community values through the sharing of images. Much of the area that is focused on in sales and social media is the land that is abundant throughout the area. Although the community is sustainable in its economic and social efforts, there is no denying that nature is the strongest influencer in Adams County and its community’s use of social media.

Taking Stock: Are You a Healthy Information Community?

As a whole, Adams County can be considered moderately healthy as an information community. Their abundance of online resources and community publications makes information readily available, despite the rural nature of majority of the area. Although the individuals that reside in Adams County seem to rely on less technology than most of the country, they seem to have decent access to it as far as Southern Ohio regions are concerned.

With one central website containing the county’s government resources, the community has ample access to information regarding their regions officials. The site’s URL is https://adamscountyoh.gov/ and it offers several drop down categories for users to choose from. Elected officials, news, and services are just a few of the options available on the website in regards to Adams County. By including the names and contact information of the government officials, a sense of transparency is added as community members can easily reach out to public figures in their area. The website also offers a mission statement, as well as a vision statement for what the local government hopes to achieve while serving the community. According to their mission statement, “Adams County government serves all its citizens by exceeding expectations through the process of representation with the highest standard of ethics and service.”

Also, the website includes meeting times and dates so members of the community are informed on when and where they are able to engage with the government representatives of Adams County. Not only are county residents able to attend meetings to stay informed and involved, but the court of clerks also offers legal documents containing records. Upon request, public documents can be obtained and this gives the office a sense of transparency with its community. Upon reviewing their website, it seems as though the Adams County government has a strong sense of ethics and places great value in being honest with the people it serves.

In regards to local media, there were several sources for television, newspaper, and radio when referencing the news. Despite their existence, there is not a wide variety of choices when it comes to which outlet one chooses to follow. With only two major news publications and a handful of both television and radio options, it makes it difficult for individuals to gain a wide range of diverse opinions in the community. Because of the rural atmosphere and hometown values present in Adams County, their media outlets strongly represent these characteristics as well.

Within the communities of Adams County, there appear to be numerous opportunities for individuals to get involved civically whether that be through education reforms, veteran’s needs, or health concerns. Many of the options are readily accessible on the government website through a tab entitled “services”. From the presence of the website, the Adams County officials seem open to hearing from community residents and even provide their contact information for feedback. While there is no set community dashboard for open conversations linked on the site, the social media presence of community members offers an outlet for the expression of views and opinions. The community also has open meetings where individuals are able to attend and share their concerns, civically or otherwise.

One of the most impressive qualities of Adams County is their abundant access to public libraries as an informational resource. With over five major libraries, community members are exposed to various resources that will allow them to stay educated and connected. From newspapers and books to the internet, the libraries in this county provide public spaces where groups can gather and expand their knowledge. Not only is there potential to learn, but the fact that there are a variety of options for community gathering spots makes assembly among Adams County residents easy and accessible. While there are sources providing content about healthcare, education, employment and other important qualities of life, there is not one central information hub.

Despite the challenges that accompany being technologically advanced, especially in schools, Adams County is fairly progressive in their efforts to incorporate such resources as a rural region. As a school district, Adams County offers students access to the internet with Microsoft capabilities. Along with providing the outlets, the school district also employs a director of technology, systems manager, and coordinator to further make strides toward advancing their schools as technology becomes more prominent. Along with schools, the county also publicly provides moderate opportunities for community members to access such technology through both the libraries and the multiple services provided. In the area, there are four major providers, Frontier, Spectrum, Windstream, and Horizon, who offer both wireless communication services and internet access within households and businesses.

In its entirety, Adams County is making quick progress toward becoming accepted as an information community. From government transparency to internet access, there are many qualities that this region possesses that others in Southern Ohio do not. Despite their progression, the county still remains grounded in its old fashioned roots while placing value on family and work. Although the people in this area are true to their lifestyle, they are working toward becoming more informed as a community through the utilization of developing technology. In the future, it can be predicted that the way of life in Adams County will remain constant, but may improve based on the convenience the internet provides in regards to community development and involvement.

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