This Place Matters: How We Measure a Year

Posted on: December 14th, 2010 by Jason Clement 1 Comment

This time of year, two songs end up in near constant rotation on my iPod: "Christmastime Is Here" (à la Charlie Brown) and "Seasons of Love" (à la Rent).

The former because it's simply what the holidays sound like to me. Slow, sweet, and savory – like sitting by a fire and, well, just sitting. The latter because it poses the perfect question as the final days of December dangle ornament-like and then fall from the calendar: How exactly do you measure a year?

When you think about it, there are a lot of ways. Going back to my perpetually undercharged iPod, I could count the number of times I’ve played my all-time favorite song ("Vogue," 538 spins). Or I could use that handy Facebook app that creates a montage of your year in status updates (I said that?!?). And then there’s always the catchy measurements my inspiration suggests – midnights, sunsets, cups of coffee.

But what about preservation? How do you – as the cast of Rent infectiously croons – “measure, measure a year?” Simple: This. Place. Matters.

You’ve seen the smiling faces. You’ve seen the beautiful places. Those photos– those warm point-and-shoot  moments suspended in time thanks to the pioneering efforts of Flickr – are our movement. This is people saving places. Better said: This is people loving places.

So, as I hit replay one more time on "Seasons of Love," I invite you on a quick digital stroll through my ten favorite This Place Matters moments of 2010. As you go, keep one thing in mind: What place should you honor with a photo?

Camera shy? Ha! That didn’t stop this Main Street enthusiast.

Nothing but love for our nation’s parks – and their dedicated rangers.

Honestly, I’m not sure if this is a This Place Matters photo or a still from Glee. Regardless, I adore everything about it. Jazz hands!

In full disclosure, historic theaters are my preservation crush. Quick… next photo or this might get inappropriate.

Kids + This Place Matters = Big-Time Heartstrings

I love a parade!

My colleague Julia Rocchi rocking the Twitters while we were filming Austin Unscripted. Note: This food truck lot matters. A lot.

Sometimes homemade signs say it best.

And this year's PhotoShop award goes to...

Now this is a group effort.

These were some of my faves, but you can check out all our photos in our This Place Matters slideshow.

Jason Lloyd Clement is an online content provider for Since you've made it this far, he is wondering why you aren't already snapping your next – or your first – This Place Matters photo.

Updated December 14, 3:50 p.m.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Jason Clement

Jason Clement

Jason Lloyd Clement is the director of community outreach at the National Trust, which is really just a fancy way of saying he’s a professional place lover. For him, any day that involves a bike, a camera, and a gritty historic neighborhood is basically the best day ever.


One Response

  1. Carole Binnig

    December 14, 2010

    I immensely enjoy this site and thanks for being an important element in America