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Randolph County Barn Dedicated to Improve Residents' Health

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You may have seen barns around the area with the Mail Pouch Tobacco logo on the side, but now a Randolph County group wants to turn that around to encourage you to "treat yourself to health."

The newly painted barn dedicated on Friday is a play on the iconic Mail Pouch image to keep residents healthy.

Mail Pouch barns are an icon in the region, but the Randolph County Family Resource Network is putting its own spin on a local barn. One side of the newly-painted barn, visible from Route 33, promotes breast cancer awareness, and it's the first in the nation to do so.

"Randolph County has a unique coalition for substance abuse and working together, so we were selected to host the nation's first breast cancer awareness barn," said Rebecca Vance of the Family Resource Network in Randolph County.

The other side is more of a play on the Mail Pouch message, with an anti-smoking message to encourage people to stop tobacco use altogether.

Located one mile outside of Harman, the barn may not seem to be in a prime location, but Vance said there's actually a lot of people who will pass by the barn and see its message.

"Whenever we looked at this one, people come through here to ski, to Canaan Valley, to Timberline, you've got Seneca Rocks, people are traveling through here to go to Virginia to the beach and different places. The the main road that sites on the side of the barn leads to Spruce Knob, Gandy, a lot of fisherman," Vance said.

It's the fifth barn across the state that is designed to help stop tobacco use, but the first to address smoking specifically. It's one the state hopes will encourage more West Virginians to quit smoking for good.

"I hope as they drive past, that it'll put a seed in their mind, if they do use tobacco, 'I saw 1-800-QUIT-NOW somewhere,'" said Kathy Danberry of the West Virginia Division of Tobacco Prevention.

If you are a smoker and looking to quit, you can get 8 weeks worth of patches, gum, or other materials to help you quit for free. Call the quit line for more information.