Special to HuntingtonNews.Net

by Jennifer Wheeler (from social media)

Huntington is HOME. It's also home to my people- my family- the people I was born blessed with- and my friends- the family I chose.

The success of Huntington means success for us and success for our people, for our loved ones. Success means joy, betterment, and the ability to flourish.

Huntington's success isn't just in the hands of one man, or 11 people, 89 or 103. It's not even on 49,138. The success of our city is in the hands of all of us- from the city, to the county, across the state, and all the way to those in the farthest reaches of the internet. So stop pointing fingers and start rolling up your sleeves.

If you live here, or your people live here- or even close by- you should be rooting for Huntington, for Marshall, and for the surrounding areas. What is beneficial for one, is good for all of us. Focusing on the negative, relishing in the flaws of our town is working against your own best interests and those of people you love. It is the time to band together for good- for our city, for our people, and for each other.

Huntington has been unfairly cast in a negative light. There has been crime here; there has been crime everywhere. But we have resources to fight it and we have community to rise above it. Whatever your interest, there is community for you, here. Cyclists, yogis, foodies, parishioners, sports parents, artists, craft beer drinkers- everybody! We have to lift one another up and spread the positive message that Huntington is home to people who care about people and the interests of those people.

Huntington is philanthropic. Residents of Huntington are some of the most giving in the country. A 2016 poll resulted in the revelation that of the 50 most charitable cities in America, the Huntington-Charleston metro area ranked #4.

Huntington is rich with amenities. We are home to Heritage Farm- an open air Appalachain history museum, and the Huntington Museum of Art- one of only 800 fully accredited museums in the world- and it's free and open late on Tuesdays. Huntington has its own symphony orchestra- something other cities of our size can't boast. We have a vibrant downtown that is amidst a revitalization, in which beautiful historic buildings are being restored with specialty boutique shops and interesting restaurants. That's my Huntington and that's your Huntington, too.

Resources are abundant in Huntington. Besides what is found in nature- the amazing trail and parks system- GHPRD features 27 properties, we are home to the PATH, and nestled against the Ohio River, Huntington is the largest inland port in the US, based on tonnage. Huntington is home to a major university with some programs that rank #1 in the nation. Marshall brings us new talented new minds every semester as well as new ideas and technology. With the partnership of Marshall's medical school and Cabell Huntington, we have a world class teaching hospital serving 10 counties and 3 states- keep that in perspective when talking about per capita statistics.

Huntington isn't perfect. No place is; no one is- not me, not you. But we are better together, stronger together, working for a common goal, working for a brighter tomorrow, and sharing our positive attributes with the world- something that will only help to bring about more positives. And as the old song goes, Accentuate the positive, friends! Eliminate the negatives!

Resilient is practically Huntington's middle name. We've been in a dark place before and it took some time to heal, but we persevered and let in the light. Be the light for your city, for your neighbor. We've been compared to the phoenix before. It is time to rise again! #MYhuntington #timetorise
#accentuatethepositive #elinimatethenegative