Local Resolutions Part 26 of 29
This is the twenty-sixth in a series of 29 ways to help your local community online in 2010. If you missed it, you may wish to read the introductory post.
In this post, I suggest that making online maps of sights to see is a great way to help strengthen your community while you’re online. This series has included recent posts about displaying a local-pride bumper sticker, sharing the link love, and inspiring others to buy local.
Lancaster is a great place to wander.
That’s especially true in the city, where you can wander on foot, and it’s also true for the rest of the county, where you need a car, bike, or horse and buggy.
When you wanderings have led you to many good (and under-discovered) places, why not collect those place on a map and share them with others?
Map it out
That’s what Jen Siegrist did a year ago with her Google map Lancaster City – Things To Do. It’s a great little map because she took the time to annotate the points of interest, even if some of the information has become a little outdated.
One of my favorite examples of such Google maps is the Richmond (VA) Tacky Lights Tour. An example from the realm of business would be Paul Stoltzfus’s map of show lawns from his Lancaster lawn care service, WiseGrass.
So, today’s resolution for making your local community better through online means is to make a Google map of great places to visit.
It’s simple. Go to Google Maps, log in with your Gmail account, and then look for the “My Maps” link below the search bar and to the left. Click it, then click “Create map.” Give it a name and description and you’re off and running. Use the pushpins to add points of interest and the lines to draw routes. You can even invite others to add to the map by clicking “collaborators.”
To make it easier, just search the name of each location you want to add. In the information box that pops up, click “Save to My Maps,” and you’ll be adding points of interest in no time.
The possibilities are endless
I’m sure you can do this with other mapping/direction sites as well, and feel free to let us know about them in the comments. Also please share links to any maps you’ve already created.
The more I think about it, the more possibilities there are here. Maybe next month we can do a collaborative map, “A Locals’ Guide to Lancaster,” for tourists who don’t want to be touristy. Would you be interested in that?
When it comes to making valuable local content online, the more geo-relevant it is, the better. That’s why earlier in this series I wrote about adding Lancaster to the FourSquare map (FourSquare is an application for GPS-enabled mobile devices). I think that making specialized Google maps as guides has a really valuable place, too.