Home Spotlight on Garrettsville

Garrettsville – The blighted feed mill at the intersection of Main, Center and Water Streets is about to be transformed into a focal point of beauty, usefulness and historic pride. The long-vacant property changed hands last week from principal owner Martin Paul to local developer Mike Maschek.

The current state of the former grist mill. Photo by: Estelle R. Brown

The current state of the former grist mill.

Photo by: Estelle R. Brown

The change in ownership — effective May 23, 2014 — will set in motion a series of events which should result in a fully restored property within six months, Maschek reports. The abatement process of removing asbestos siding, shingles and other hazardous materials is to have started by midweek. Then excavators will demolish the two sagging rear storage buildings which face Water Street and clear the grounds for a green space in time for Summerfest the last week of June.

According to a statement made by attorney Douglas K. Paul, “Plans for the property include the preservation and rehabilitation of this landmark building and property which has served the area for 100 plus years in many different capacities, most recently, and likely the longest, as a grist mill. Earlier plans had called for the building to be demolished. Retaining this building may be an important element in Garrettsville’s historic landscape,  given the recent loss in the historic district as a result of the downtown area fire on March 22, 2014.”

The front showroom facing Main Street is structurally sound and will be restored as a landmark befitting the actual focal point of downtown Garrettsville, Maschek says. Built in 1852, it served the village as a carriage shop, general store and feed supplier before going out of business more than 10 years ago.

Photo of building dating back to the late 1800’s courtesy of the Paul family.

Photo of building dating back to the late 1800’s courtesy of the Paul family.

All subject to approval by standards set for the Garrettsville Historic District, plans call for the renovated building to feature stouter corner posts and a stone front face up to the second floor porch, which will wrap around to the back of the building for a view of Silver Creek. New windows, siding and roof will be installed, all according to historic design and colors of the early 1850s. Plans also call for a four- or five-foot glass-enclosed cupola to be added to the roofline, to light automatically each night as a warm beacon shining over Main Street. The Paul family has also committed to erecting a historic plaque out front.

The interior spaces of the basement, first and second floors — about 3,000 square feet — will be completely remodeled with new heating, electric, plumbing, insulation and drywall to create retail and office space, to be made available for rent or purchase before the end of the calendar year.

“It will be beautiful,” Maschek forecasts. “My goal is to bring Garrettsville’s hidden glory alive; to bring life back into this village and opportunity back to the fire victims who lost their businesses. I want the center of town to be lit up with promise, representing Garrettsville’s best. The fire was terrible for everyone but I believe that God will bring beauty from the ashes. ”

Maschek owns a majority of the block which burned in the March fire, and he expressed a sense of obligation to provide the burnt-out business owners viable options to return downtown as soon as possible. Restoration of the Buckeye Block is moving slowly, with demolition and clearing of the ruins now complete. Soon the vacant lots will be leveled off with soil and seeded with grass. Once the grass is established, the fencing will come down and a green space will be available to the public until rebuilding starts.

garrettsville-garfield-high-school-banners

Garrettsville – Pictured From Left to Right, are the painters of the new banners hanging in front of James A. Garfield High School: Danielle Konecek, Shannon Stowe, Renee Perrault, Savannah Sheer, Dicey Miller, Edana Rankin, Casey Mansell, Anna Brigham, Ally Milano, Libby Frato-Sweeney, Madisson Geddes, Brittany Davis, Whitney Miller, Todd Barton.  Not Pictured: Madeline Lininger, Katlyn Simpson.

Garrettsville - Take THAT, Creepy Karpis! A northeast Ohio tornado watch didn’t stop interested folks from turning up at the Iva Walker Auditorium on Wednesday, May 15, 2014 to get the low-down on “Two Grants, and Three Giant Leaps” for the James A. Garfield Schools and the Garrettsville Communities.  Perhaps they were reassured by the tommy-gun toting G-Man at the door.  Persons of note from across the county and a gubernatorial representative from Columbus were on hand, as was Mayor Rick Patrick and a spokesman from the Ohio Historical Preservation Office.  Hiram College’s departing president, Thomas Chema bade the district farewell and acknowledged the coming of the college’s first woman president,  Dr. Lori Varlotta, and the willingness of the institution to participate in  the rebuilding after the “Buckeye Block Fire”.

It had all begun with a welcome from Julie Thompson, historian and recent Hiram College graduate, who had organized the evening, and the playing of the National Anthem by the James A. Garfield Band(It was at least partly about a national event, after all).Superintendent  Ted Lysiak gave opening remarks and thanks to the participants and the custodial staff which always finishes up the parade.  Rick Patrick acknowledged the outstanding services provided by the First Responders, from GFNVFD and mutual assistance communities, on the occasion of the fire and recognized the members who were in attendance.  Congressman Dave Joyce was introduced by JAG student Mark Butto and gave remarks of encouragement and support.  Kit Semplak, president of the James A. Garfield Historical Society, greeted the crowd and  offered a glimpse of the history of the lost Buckeye Block; the youngest member of the historical society, Grace Edwards, presented a summary of the Last Great Train Heist and its national     effects.  Then came the re-enactment of the event itself as narrated by Julie Thompson, based on the book by Alvin “Creepy” Karpis, gang leader.  The Garfield drama students in period attire brought the event to life and even hustled some celebrity  hold-up victims across the stage.  These were none other than the current county commissioners—Kathleen Chandler, Maureen Frederick and Sabrina Christian-Bennett.  These worthies, at the conclusion of the re-enactment, unveiled the fact that the Village of Garrettsville had been awarded a CDBG (Community Development Block Grant) to the tune of $75,000 to aid in the re-development—streetscape, lighting, parking, etc.—of the business district.

The wrap-up of the event came after brief remarks by Jonathan Vimr of the Ohio Historical Society when the new state historical marker(which had been draped in a Garrettsville bicentennial throw) was revealed with a flourish by Kit Semplak and Portage County Auditor, Janet Esposito.  Ta-Daaah!

The JAG band played the Garfield Alma Mater.

The great variety of tasty and timely refreshments after the ceremony were graciously provided by the Nelson United Methodist Church.

Thanks to all.

 

The early twentieth century was the golden age for the modern barbershop. During this golden age, many barbershops were classy places. Often barber chairs were ornately carved from oak and walnut and upholstered with fine leather. Marble counters tops held beautifully colored glass tonic bottles and ingrained in the wood and leather in the shop was the smell of pipe and tobacco smoke, hair tonics, pomades and oils.

"Barber Jim" Reppy finishes up a customer's haircut at his temporary location on Highland Ave in Garrettsville. Photo: Benjamin Coll, Staff Reporter

“Barber Jim” Reppy finishes up a customer’s haircut at his temporary location on Highland Ave in Garrettsville.
Photo: Benjamin Coll, Staff Reporter

The warm and welcoming familiarity became a place where men came to relax and socialize. Going to the barbershop was a weekly and sometimes even daily habit. It was a place for men to fraternize with friends and ‘chew the fat’. Today, the modern barbershop is still a place for male camaraderie and conversation.

Jim Reppy, owner and operator of The Barber of G’ville, states that his customers are what he loves most about his job. Jim became a barber after being laid-off from his job at General Motors in the late 1970’s. He worked for his father-in-law, and then bought the business from him in 1990.

Jim says that he used to think that his father-in-law was the smartest man in the world. “He knew something about everything.” Jim said. But soon after coming to work at the barbershop he realized where all that knowledge came from. “It’s amazing what you learn, you meet everyone from garbage truck drivers to college professors. They all like to talk.”

Though today’s barbers no longer carry out tooth extraction or bloodletting practices they still provide an important service. Not only in the cutting of hair but in providing what may truly be one of the last civic forums, where people can gather freely to talk with others in the community. And the barber pole, which once symbolized a place for hair cuts, shaves, surgery & dentistry now stands for a comfortable place to relax, get a hair cut, and join in the banter.

The Barber of G’ville is located at 10661 Highland Ave in historic Garrettsville.

Hours:
Mon: 8:30 AM – 5:30 PM
Tue: 8:30 AM – 5:30 PM
Wed: Closed
Thu: 8:30 AM – 5:30 PM
Fri: 8:30 AM – 5:30 PM
Sat: 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM

Payments Accepted:
Cash

Barber of G’ville is a member of the Garrettsville Area Chamber of Commerce. Your continued support of member businesses helps promote the local economy, and funds many of the community activities you enjoy.

Photo: Metro Newspaper Service

Garrettsville - Garrettsville United Methodist Church is launching a new outreach mission this summer. ‘Camp Read-a-Lot’ will be held Wednesdays, June 25, July 2, July 9, and July 16 from 9:30 AM – 11:30 AM; lunch will be served from 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM. The ages for the children will be K–3rd grade.

The UMC is looking for adults willing to help 2 to 3 children one day a week. They will be asked to move between reading stations, working on the activity for the different skills needed to become a better reader. Each reading station will have directions and the materials required to complete the activity. The UMC encourages those volunteering to stay for lunch with the children to build a good relationship. There will be a training session for all volunteers on Monday, June 2nd at 6:30 PM.

For more information about this program, or to volunteer please call or speak with:

Kristina Cupples – (330) 527-0180
Christina Shaefer – (330) 274-0572
Pat Singelyn – (330) 592-1170
Glenna Spaur (lunches) – (330) 577-6575

For those interested in supporting the reading program but unable to volunteer time, donations are also being accepted at this time.

Garrettsville UMC is a member of the Garrettsville Area Chamber of Commerce. Your continued support of member businesses and organizations helps promote the local economy, and funds many of the community activities you enjoy.

Garrettsville – The  Campus of Excellence steering committee met on May 15 (third Thursday of the month, MS Library/Media Center) for a progress report and quick look at the construction of the new elementary school addition to house the fifth and sixth grade, come August.

The first question had to do with the weather and its effect on the situation.  Can we say “wet”?  Things are moving along as quickly as possible, given the precipitation, and once some drying takes place, it will be full steam ahead…and then some.  The design-build company overseeing the project has built in contingency planning and is prepared to put “pedal to the metal” when it is necessary and feasible to meet deadlines…seven days a week if need be.

Color schemes.  Who thought about them? Paint? That’s all  in the works—field (background) colors, accent colors.  Carpet tiles and floor tiles, walls, work areas, the clinic, restrooms, public meeting space, hallways—all in the mix; different requirements for different uses.  Don’t even THINK about Fifty Shades of Gray.

The block walls are about to go up (see : weather). The structural steel is waiting in the wings.  Concrete trucks will be bringing in some 18,000 cubic feet of the base material—20-25 truckloads—for the foundation.  New valves and hydrants for the water system, campus-wide, will be added.  New schematics for the power supply will be added, individualizing the buildings, and requiring a power shutdown as well as a water supply interruption at some future point.  Summer school will be moved to the Middle School this year in consideration of the requirements of the situation and the safety of students.  Timmerman GeoTech has been and will continue to monitor construction details that most of us would never think of—soil moisture, concrete standards, etc.—testing as we go to ensure compliance with highest standards of construction , health and safety.  The building will be grounded to lessen the dangers of lightning strikes.  Who would have thought of that?

And all of that stuff in the Park Avenue building that has to go somewhere until it finds a new home in the new building?  Through the good offices of two local, school-involved guys, board member Deral White and perennial coach and booster, Larry Roach, those materials will be stored in two semi trailers, which will be loaded by the football team…and probably unloaded too—good body-building exercise.

It’s a GO, folks.  To (mis)quote a famous American admiral(Farragut), “Damn the weather reports!  Full speed ahead!”

 

Garrettsville – On Tuesday, May 6th, Apple Tree Preschool held our annual Trike-a-Thon fundraiser to help raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Students collected money and then rode their trikes or bikes in the parking lot for 30 minutes.  The fundraiser is also an educational tool to help teach our students about the importance of bike safety.  This is the seventh year that Apple Tree Preschool has held the fundraiser, and this year our students raised $1900.00.  All the proceeds from the Trike-a-Thon go directly to St. Jude Hospital.

AppleTreeApple Tree Preschool is a Step Up to Quality Three Star Award winning preschool located at the Garrettsville United Methodist Church on Park Avenue.  We are currently accepting registrations for students for our fall classes.  Classes offered include a 3-Year-Old class that meets from 9:15 – 11:30 on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, and a Pre-kindergarten class that meets from 12:15 – 2:30 on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.  Please call the church office at 330-527-2055 for information on registering your child for fall.

Garrettsville – The family-owned independent insurance agency, now know as The Ryser Agency, has been serving the Garrettsville area and Northeast Ohio for over seventy years.   Owned and operated by Matt Ryser since 1994, The Ryser Agency is a full-service agency that specializes in farm, auto, home, and small business insurance coverage.

ryser-picFormerly known as the Reynolds Agency and owned by Ryser’s aunt and uncle, Ryser began working as a customer service representative and property inspector for them while he attended the University of Akron.  After earning his degree in 1989, Matt accepted a full-time agent position with the agency and worked his way up over the next few years to become the manager of the agency.  Matt and his wife Amy purchased the agency from his aunt and uncle in 1994.

As an independent insurance agency, The Ryser agency represents several insurance companies so it can offer clients a wider choice of auto, home, business, and life coverage to better meet their needs and pocketbook.

But more importantly, Matt’s number one goal for his agency is impeccable customer service.  Matt learned early from his aunt and uncle the importance of providing good service to everyone in need no matter their circumstances and he has strived to maintain the values they instilled.  To better serve those goals and values, Matt has brought in Evonne Fox as a new agent and customer service representative.

Many will recognize Evonne’s smiling face and friendly demeanor from her time at the local hardware store, however, what they might not know is that Evonne brings with her years of experience in the insurance industry.

Evonne began working in administrative support and quality control in the commercial division at Nationwide Insurance in 1982 and later she worked for her husband Ken’s own Nationwide Agency here in Garrettsville.  Shortly after Ken closed his agency in 2001 to return to teaching, Evonne earned her property and casualty license and worked for a newly opened Allstate Insurance office here in Garrettsville.  Unfortunately, that office closed in 2006.

Evonne is thrilled to be back working in the insurance industry.  She says a lot has changed when it comes to understanding the industry and coverage, but the one thing that hasn’t is the need for good customer service.

Joyce Jones also assists Matt and Evonne in the office a couple of days a week.  Joyce has been with the agency a long time and enhances the agency’s customer service philosophy.

Matt and Evonne don’t just advise clients about insurance,  they take a vested interest in their clients needs.  They can recommend loss-prevention ideas that can cut costs and if a loss occurs, they will stand with their client until the claim is settled.

The Ryser Insurance Agency has grown significantly over the years, but continues to operate, as their website says, “with a home-town service philosophy”.  Matt and Evonne both have raised their families in the community and continue to stay involved and make every effort to show their clients the same respect they do their neighbors, friends and family.

The Ryser agency is located at 10878 North Street, across from the Charles Auto Family Dealership.  More information can be obtained from the agency web site: http://ryserinsurance.com or by calling the office at 330-527-5626.  Or better yet, stop in and say “Hi” to see what The Ryser Agency may be able to do for you.

 

Garrettsville - Garrettsville Summerfest is one of the biggest festivals in Portage County with contests, parades, races, with live music and entertainment all weekend long. The event will be held on June 27th-29th at the intersection of State Routes 88 & 82 in historic downtown Garrettsville.

2014_chevrolet_equinox_equinoxThe year, the theme is “Rockin’ to Rebuild.” The theme was chosen to demonstrate that even though the village suffered a great loss in the Buckeye Block Fire this past spring, they are not broken, just bent a little, and Summerfest will go on as planned.  Because Summerfest is a big part of Garrettsville and the community is also a big part of Summerfest, the committee has chosen to donate some of their proceeds to rebuild the Buckeye Block after the festival’s bills are paid.

Every year the festival committee chooses a charity to bless and this year they have chosen to donate to rebuilding the Buckeye Block. In past years, they have donated to the food bank, military families, etc.

Garrettsville Summerfest is primarily supported by the proceeds from the Car Raffle and the festival t-shirt sales. This year the car will be a nicely-equipped 2014 Chevrolet Equinox. One may choose the car or $20,000 in cash. Raffle tickets are available at area merchants and can be purchased for $20 each or 6 for $100. Second prize will be an iPad and third will be a gas grill. The drawing will be held at the close of the festival on Sunday, June 29, 2014 following Garrettsville Idol. The winner does not need to be present to win.

Garrettsville Summerfest t-Shirts will also be sold to help pay for the festival. They are expected to be on sale by, if not before Memorial Day. They can be purchased at Middlefield Bank, The Weekly Villager, Miller’s Restaurant and Skylanes Bowling.  This year there are two colors to choose from, orange and safety green. The cost will be the same as last year, $12 each with extended sizes being $15. There will be a limited amount available and once they are gone, they’re gone.

Therefore, if you have always enjoyed the festival and want to see it continue to grow and be successful, consider supporting one of the fundraising efforts.

 Garrettsville Summerfest is held on the fourth full weekend of June each year at the intersection of State Routes 82 & 88 in historic downtown Garrettsville. For more festival information visit us at www.garrettsvillesummerfest.com 

 

Portage County - The Mental Health & Recovery Board of Portage County is working to spread awareness of Ohio’s new program, Start Talking!: Building a Drug-Free Future.

Found at starttalking.ohio.gov, the website is for parents and teachers. It is aimed at helping adults learn how to start the conversation with teens and children about drug abuse.

“Portage County is among many places in Ohio where deaths from drug overdose have exceeded deaths from car accidents. Start Talking! is a tool for parents and others who work with youth to be able to have critical conversations; especially when the number of accidental deaths is increasing,” says Joel Mowrey, Ph.D., executive director of the Mental Health & Recovery Board.

The MHRB has developed a postcard highlighting important information about Start Talking! and will be distributing these postcards around the Portage County area. Those interested in helping to spread the word about Start Talking! can also call the MHRB at 330-673-1756 and receive postcards to share at their own school, work or other social functions or events. The postcards give parents and teachers the information needed to access and best use the online resources that Start Talking! provides.

Launched by Governor John Kasich and First Lady Karen Kasich, Start Talking!: Building a Drug-Free Future is a statewide initiative with a focus on preventing drug abuse among Ohio’s children and youth. In addition to the abuse of illegal substances, an increase in recent years of prescription drugs being brought into homes allows these dangerous drugs to find their way into the hands of children and teens and cause addictions just as dangerous as those of illegal substances.

Start Talking! has several components. Know! targets parents and educators of middle school students, providing them with the tools and encouragement to increase communication about substance abuse with youth. This program includes free resources attained through bi-monthly e-mails which contain Parent Tips on how to have the conversation about substance abuse with children and TEACHable Moments to show educators ways in which they can use their position to reinforce messages about drug abuse.

Parents360 Rx is a program that focuses on educating parents and other adults. It helps them to increase their knowledge about substance abuse and improve their confidence in starting the conversation with their children and teens. This program includes an online Parents360 Rx Action Toolkit which is meant to assist parents or other adults in having substance-abuse conversations with adolescents. The Toolkit also includes directions and resources to help school or community leaders, groups or even individuals to host Parents360 Rx workshops of their own in their communities.

5 Minutes for Life is a Start Talking! program geared toward Ohio and local law enforcement officers and how they can help in starting the conversation among Ohio’s youth. This program involves Ohio Highway Patrol, Ohio National Guard and local law enforcement talking to student athletes at the beginning of practices or games and encouraging them to become promoters of healthy and drug-free lifestyles among their peers.

For more information, contact the Mental Health & Recovery Board at 330-673-1756. The board’s website is www.mental-health-recovery.org and can be found on Facebook.

Garrettsville - Six shiny, brand-new TRUPER shovels.  Hard hats.  A pile of dirt brought in and lined up especially for the occasion.  Students, educators &  administrators, township trustees, construction officials dignitaries interested citizens.  Photo opportunities—with or without dirt—of all sorts.  A backdrop of soil on the move, big machines, flagged stakes, safety fencing, a changing façade of the elementary school as its addition takes shape.  The Marching Pride.

They were all there on the official groundbreaking ceremony held on May 8, 2014 at the James A. Garfield K-6 Elementary School Addition. Board president Guy Pietra managed introductions and recognitions  The governor sent a liaison, Tim Ross, with a proclamation.  The superintendent spoke of the challenges of the construction, the expectations and resources as part of the project overview.  Grace Edwards, a 5th grade student, brought a historical viewpoint and an appreciation of the Park Avenue school.  Andy Lininger  and Laura Wilburn spoke of the skills learned , mentors encountered, groundwork laid in the elementary school for future success.  Mayor Rick Patrick offered the description of the occasion as a milestone.  Bob McAuliffe, Jr. of the Hammond Construction Company made reference to the teamwork involved in the whole enterprise. Superintendent Ted Lysiak encouraged all in attendance to cherish the memories and remember the path of the changes  leading to tomorrow with educators as builders.   Board vice president David Vincent gave closing remarks and thanks.  Then it was on to the shovels!

And refreshments, of course.

Registration for “Fizz, Boom, Read!” at the Library Begins May 28

The Portage County District Library announces that summer reading club registration begins on Wednesday, May 28 at most branch libraries. Join us for “Fizz, Boom, Read!” at your branch library this summer. There are activities planned for all age groups. The theme for this year is related to science, so programs will feature experiments, exploration, and shows.

Registration is required. Call your branch library to register for summer reading club. Branch libraries include Aurora Memorial (330-562-6502), Garrettsville (330-527-4378), Pierce Streetsboro (330-626-4458), Randolph (330-325-7003), and Windham (330-326-3145).

In addition, the Deerfield Computer Lab, located at 1450 State Route 14 in the Deerfield Township Hall, will feature summer reading programs this year. Call 330-557-6032 Monday, Wednesday, Friday, or Saturday between 10:00 am to 4:00 pm to register. Programs include “Wind & Wind Energy” on June 11, “Sloppy Science” on June 18, “Kitchen Science” on June 25, “Optical Illusion” on July 2, “Robotics” on July 9, and “Sweet Science” on July 16.

For more information about summer reading club or other library programs and services, visit Portage County District Library online at www.portagelibrary.org. Find us on Facebook. Follow us on Pinterest.

 

National Pet Food Donation Month at the Library

May is National Pet Food Donation Month. Please help us celebrate our local furry friends by stopping in at the Garrettsville Library, a branch of the Portage County District Library, where we will be collecting any type of pet food to give to a local animal shelter. As our way of saying thanks for helping out our four-pawed neighbors, each pet food item donated (think can of cat food, bag of doggie treats, etc.) will earn a chance to win our pet-themed raffle basket filled with books and other items any pet-human will love.

For more information or to bring in your donation, drop by the Reference Desk or call (330) 527-4378 any time when the library is open in the whole month of May.

 

“As Seen on Pinterest” Craft at the Library

As part of our month-long celebration of pets, the Garrettsville Library, a branch of the Portage County District Library, will be spotlighting our furry friends during its “As Seen on Pinterest” Craft Series activity. Adults can come make a paw-themed leash and treat holder on Saturday, May 24 from 1:00 pm until 3:00 pm.

Registration is required as space is limited. For more details or to sign up, call (330) 527-4378 or drop by the Circulation Desk any time the library is open.

 

The Garrettsville Library, located at 10482 South Street, Garrettsville, OH 44231, is open Monday and Tuesday, 11:00am – 7:00pm; Wednesday and Friday, 10:00am – 6:00pm, Saturday 9:00am – 5:00pm; and closed Thursdays and Sundays. For additional information about library programs and services, please visit the Portage County District Library online at www.portagelibrary.org.

garrettsville-strong-softball-team-north-akron-winners-softballAkron - The Garrettsville Strong charity softball team won the North Akron 2nd Annual Spring Warm up and raised over $1,000 (including fund raising uniform t-shirts by the Villager), and still counting, for the Gville fire fund!! The donations will be made  in the name of Garrettsville Youth Softball and the Ohio Outlaws to the Garrettsville Strong fund.

Great job ladies!! For a team that never played together before, they had great team chemistry and teamwork, going 5-0 on the weekend. The girls scored on 3 home runs, a grand slam by Autumn “Cali” Belviy, suicide squeeze play, multiple doubles and triples, tons of beautiful bunts. Great job catching by Shelby Mayes, dominating pitching by Angela “Maz” Masiello and Madison “Maddog” VanKirk, an awesome throw from center field by Torrie Gall to almost gun a runner out at first, (Threw it so hard it bent the first baseman’s glove back and it came out), Meg Visocan played every position except catcher including pitcher. Every young lady had a highlight and contributed across the board — can’t even remember them all!  On top of all that, the pitchers and catcher were calling their own games, at 12 yrs old, and did it beautifully!

The GarrettsvilleStrong roster consisted of: Garrettsville Cal’s Gals Angela Vanhorn,  Emma Lawrence, and Chloe Pfile; Garrettsville Hotshots  Gracie Pignaloso, Sarah Shearer and Anna Weaver; Garrettsville –  Madison VanKirk; Crestwood –  Angela Masiello and Torrie Gall;  Crestwood Victory –  Maddy Cline and Alexis Schultz; Outlaws –  Hailey Eckelberry, Autumn Belviy  and Shelby Mayes; Explosive Black – Meg Visocan. Coaches were David Pignaloso, Scott Vanhorn, Tom VanKirk and Dan Masiello.

Thank you to “dugout moms” Becky VanKirk and Tara Vanhorn and special thanks to  Karen Visocan, and daughter Meg, for helping out and more than doubling our donations with some additional fund raising!!

Thanks GYS, Ohio Outlaws Fastpitch, to all who participated, donated, and rooted us on, could not have done it without you!!!

 

missy-steele-garrettsville-ceramic-mugGarrettsville - This view of Garrettsville is especially important to ceramic artist Missy Steele who moved from Garrettsville to Pittsburgh when she was 18, but still has family is still here. “This is where I did most of my growing up, and this is where I return for holidays and special occasions. Honestly, it’s the place I still call home.” says Steele.

When glazing the mugs it was important to Steele to recreate her view of Main Street, arriving from the East. Steele chose to recreate a view that she would see on any given trip—busy with cars visiting Garretsville’s many local shops and businesses, an open sky scattered with clouds. A typical afternoon in Garrettsville. This is the way Steele will remember Main Street.

Each mug is handcrafted on the potter’s wheel; a handle is then made and attached. Every detail is painted on by hand, and the mug is fired once before glaze is applied and once after. No molds are used in Steele’s process, and the glazes are mixed by hand. No commercial materials are used. For Steele, these mugs were an effort of love and she has dedicated her time to making each one special and unique. No two are exactly alike.

As soon as Steele heard about the fire, she knew that she wanted to help in some way. Living in Pittsburgh, she knew there wasn’t a lot that she could do locally, but by creating one-of-a-kind mugs Steele could help generate more funds than she would be able to donate on her own.

While supplies last, you can purchase a limited edition, hand-made, Garrettsville mug for a minimum donation of $35. Mugs are available for purchase at the Weekly Villager/Chamber of Commerce Office located at 8088 Main Street or the Garrettsville Branch of Middlefield Bank located at 8058 State Street. 100% of your donation goes to the GarrettsvilleStrong fund. The mugs are microwave safe, dishwasher safe, and, of course, food safe.

Missy Steele is a 2004 graduate of James A. Garfield Local Schools, and a 2014 graduate of Carlow University in Pittsburgh, receiving her Bachelor of Art degree in Ceramics.

 

Garrettsville – At Wednesday’s meeting of the Garrettsville Area Chamber of Commerce, the Board of Directors provided a fund status report for the fund. Erika Frankel, Treasurer, announced that as of May 6, 2014 the GarrettsvilleStrong fund stood at $46,370. This number reflected the total amount deposited as of the meeting date, and did not include anticipated deposits not yet received.

In an effort to improve transparency Chamber President Benjamin Coll announced that beginning Friday, a weekly fund status would be provided on the GarrettsvilleStrong page of the Chamber’s website.

Following the Chamber of Commerce meeting, the board of directors entered into executive session to review proposed guidelines for distribution of GarrettsvilleStrong funds. These guidelines are being established  with  the guidance of the Ohio Attorney General, and will  be reviewed by legal counsel prior to a  formal announcement of how fund distribution will occur.

The Garrettsville Area Chamber of Commerce board of directors established the GarrettsvilleStrong fund on Monday, March 24th to raise funds, which will be utilized to facilitate the rebuilding of the northeastern block of downtown Garrettsville affected by the fire March 22, 2014. This area is located on Main Street between Center and High Streets.

Garrettsville – There will be a benefit concert in conjunction with an art and craft silent auction on Saturday, May 17 from 6:30 to 9:00 at the Garrettsville United Methodist Church.  The goal of the People Tree’s fire fund is to aid those merchants and employees  affected by the March 22 downtown fire in Garrettsville.

Featured for the evening will be local Christian singer and songwriter GAIL MANGERI, who will be performing from 6:30 to 7:30 , with an auction break for rest and refreshment, then a closing round of music and inspiration to conclude the event.  Gail will be joined by other talented family members in inviting the community to sing along and raise prayers of thanks that no one was seriously injured in the fire. Prayers for healing and restoration for the community and the historic downtown will also be offered.

Admission is by donation.

Donations may be directed to Maureen at 330-527-4674…questions as well.

It’s about rebuilding people too.

 

3D Rendering provided by James A. Garfield Local School District

Garrettsville – Last December the James A. Garfield Local School District was awarded a $5 Million State of Ohio Straight A Fund Grant. The funds from this grant have been used to create a “Campus of Excellence” our community can be proud of for generations to come enhancing education for local school children, and expanding opportunities within our community.

As you may have noticed during your travels along State Route 88, construction of the 17,000 square foot addition to the elementary school is under way. This addition will facilitate the consolidation of the James A. Garfield Schools, allowing all 1,500 students to be located on one campus – resulting in over $300,000 in annual operational savings, and increasing the ability to share resources.  A professional development center has also been included in the addition, and will be used as a multi-purpose space for training, and public use.

The grant was not limited solely to physical construction projects, as upgrades to the District’s technology infrastructure are also being made. Students in grades 7-12 will be issued laptop computers, and students in grades K-6 will have increased access to laptop carts.

In an effort to bring even more great resources to Garrettsville and our surrounding communities, partnerships were established to make use of the Park Avenue Building. The Greater Cleveland YMCA will bring before and after school care, as well as management of youth sports. The Portage County Educational Service Center will also make use of classroom space at the building to offer a new public preschool option.

A groundbreaking ceremony at the site of the Elementary School’s new fifth and sixth grade wing is scheduled for May 8th at 6:00 PM. Area residents; parents/guardians and students are invited to attend. The rendering above illustrates what the completed project will look like when students arrive on campus at the start of the 2014/2015 school year.

 


 

Artist’s Renderings

Artist’s rendering of the elementary school  addition as seen from the main entrance (left) and from the driveway (right).

 

Garrettsville – In honor of National Dance Week, the 8th Count Dance Center participated in the nation-wide dance flash mob and “mobbed” their city. This past Sunday afternoon, the 8th Count Dance Center Dancers and their families learned the routine that all the studios were using for Dance Week. Miss Emily took time to learn the dance and then she taught it to the rest of the group. Following the practice, fifteen folks mobbed Garrettsville by performing the dance routine at Speedway, Save-a-Lot, McDonald’s and the parking lot in front of the movie theatre. The purpose of the event is to celebrate dance and to promote fun and fitness.

The dancers wore fluorescent colored t-shirts with the flash mob logo on it to promote the event. The group hit the streets and stores, surprising folks with their dance.  People stopped in awe and watched as the group performed. It was a day of fun and a great way to celebrate dance.

This is not the first time the dance center has participated in this event. Last year, they did this as well. This is the third year the National Dance Foundation has promoted the flash mob event during dance week.

This year, the 8th Count Dance Center has had a very busy dance season. This past weekend they had several of their competition groups qualify for Nationals which will be held later this summer. Their competition team has continued to be a strong contender at events all year long and hopes their success continues at Nationals.

Speaking of the competition team, they will have open calls for next year’s competition team on June 14, 2014 from 9 am until 11am at the center. Anyone who likes to dance but not interested in competition should check out the summer dance schedule and give it a try before committing to a full season of dance. They also will have a variety of dance camps throughout the summer one might like to try.

For more information on classes or summer camps, one can call the center at 330 527-0358 or visit their website for more specifics at www.the8thcount.com. The dance center is located in the Garfield Plaza at 8015 B State Street Garrettsville, OH.

Nelson Bisard, owner of Waterfall Antiques & Collectibles in Garrettsville
Nelson Bisard, owner of Waterfall Antiques & Collectibles in Garrettsville

Nelson Bisard owner of Waterfall Antiques & Collectibles in Garrettsville. Photo by: Krista Peterson, Staff Photographer

Garrettsville - For over twenty years, husband & wife team Nelson and Judy Bisard have owned and operated one of the area’s premier destinations for antiquities and collectible items. Their multi-dealer shop, Waterfall Antiques & Collectibles, carries a general line of antiques and collectibles, including furniture, accessories, glassware, pottery, jewelry, kitchen items, Victorian smalls, cranberry glass, coins, toys, dolls and so much more.

Located along the Garrettsville boardwalk, Waterfall Antiques and Collectibles is a perfect fit for a community where President James A. Garfield once walked the streets and held meetings in the rooms nearby.

Shoppers are always pleasantly surprised to discover there is so much more to see beyond the main showroom when first entering the 1870’s building. Hidden beyond the first room, treasure seekers find additional nooks and crannies packed with fine furniture, Lee Middleton dolls and smalls. As an added bonus, shoppers who venture to the lower level of the store can explore an exceptionally large basement with exposed rafters and original stone foundation. The basement holds many other pieces of antique furniture and memorabilia. Visitors to the shop also enjoy viewing Eagle Creek and Garrettsville’s scenic waterfall from the deck off the main shop floor.

Located at 8130 Main Street in Garrettsville, Waterfall Antiques and Collectibles is open from 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM Tuesday through Saturday. This weekend take a drive to beautiful Garrettsville, and discover why our historic village is truly a good place to visit and a great place to live.

 

Pictured above are (left to right): Bottom - Lexi Schultz, Sarah Shearer, Gracie Pignaloso, Angela Vanhorn, Chloe Pfile, Madi VanKirk, Maddy Cline Top - Coach Dan Masiello, Scott Vanhorn, Meg Visocan, Angela Masiello, Torrie Gall, Anna Jo Weaver, Emma Lawrence, Shelby Mayes, Coach Tom VanKirk, David Pignaloso Not pictured - Autumn Belviy and Hailey Eckelberry
Pictured above are (left to right): Bottom - Lexi Schultz, Sarah Shearer, Gracie Pignaloso, Angela Vanhorn, Chloe Pfile, Madi VanKirk, Maddy Cline Top - Coach Dan Masiello, Scott Vanhorn, Meg Visocan, Angela Masiello, Torrie Gall, Anna Jo Weaver, Emma Lawrence, Shelby Mayes, Coach Tom VanKirk, David Pignaloso Not pictured - Autumn Belviy and Hailey Eckelberry

Pictured above are (left to right): Bottom – Lexi Schultz, Sarah Shearer, Gracie Pignaloso, Angela Vanhorn, Chloe Pfile, Madi VanKirk, Maddy Cline
Top – Coach Dan Masiello, Scott Vanhorn, Meg Visocan, Angela Masiello, Torrie Gall, Anna Jo Weaver, Emma Lawrence, Shelby Mayes, Coach Tom VanKirk, David Pignaloso
Not pictured – Autumn Belviy and Hailey Eckelberry

Garrettsville - We are proud to announce that Garrettsville Youth Softball and the Ohio Outlaws have put together a team of local 12u and out of town players to raise money for the rebuilding of the businesses lost in the fire in Garrettsville a few weeks ago. We have 7 Garrettsville girls, 4 Crestwood, and 3 out of towner’s joining together for the cause along with local and Outlaw coaches!

There will be a fund raising scrimmage vs Crestwood Heat 14u April 25th @ 6pm at the fields in Shalersville Park on 303 off the 44 exit of the Ohio Turnpike. Feel free to come out and root the girls on. Cash donations or non-perishable food or household items will be accepted at the game. No donation is required to attend.

We will also be taking our “Garrettsville Strong” team to a tournament in Akron May 3-4th. The tournament director has graciously donated a large portion of our tournament fees back to the fund. Each family is donating per player to play in the tournament as well. Our uniform is the fund raising t-shirts offered by the Weekly Villager with the players numbers on the back, so most all donations go directly to the fund.

The Garrettsville business community has always generously supported the softball ladies and we felt we needed to do something to give back for all the years of support!

Special thanks to Warren Wolff, president of the Ohio Outlaws and Adam Acord, head coach of Outlaws Silver 12u for their support in this effort, along with coach Chris of the Crestwood Heat. Several local girls play for the Outlaws and other travel softball organizations and its fitting we could collaborate Recreational and Travel players and just play some softball.

The link listed below provides info on the early bird pre-season tournament in Akron http://www.thesoftballzone.com/vb3/other-tournaments-friendlies-scrimmages/56571-2nd-annual-north-akron-warmup.html

Garrettsville - April 14 ~ Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary Club moves to new location, time.  Beginning on April 21, the club will be trying out a change to meeting at noon in Cal’s II to accommodate today’s busier schedules and altered commercial circumstances.  Give it a try.

The president-elect, Delores McCumbers spoke of her visit to the Kent club to observe proceedings at a club which meets at noon and how things are organized.  The times, they are a-changin’.

John Wolfe will be the official elector at the District Conference—April 25-27 at Quail Hollow where changes in by-laws will be discussed and voted on.  Local clubs should be doing this as well, every five years.

The annual roadside clean-up is scheduled for April 26, with Boy scouts and Interact students on board; there is a track meet on that same day but adjustments will be made.

The club gratefully accepted a generous contribution from the Aurora club, to be funneled through the district coffers for use in activation in conjunction with the #GarrettsvilleStrong effort to rebuild after the disastrous fire and highlight Rotary contributions to the community.  Similarly acknowledged was the “Garrettsville Day” fund-raiser  (April 23) to be held at Blazin’ Bill’s as a fellow Rotarian sponsors a benefit for the rebuilding, having undergone a comparable disaster, once-upon-a-time.  Many thanks.

Reconstruction talk ebbed and flowed.

April 21st ~ Newness flowed at the inaugural noon meeting, attended by members, guests and speakers and combinations of those categories.  Introductions were in order.

Mayor Rick Patrick spoke on the latest developments on rebuilding information, endeavoring to maintain his customary positive attitude and touching on the clean-up progress involving the individual owners & insurance concerns, permits from various agencies (Rep. Dave Joyce helping with EPA matters)and plans for summer activities( i.e. Summerfest, Cruise Nights, etc.) and how they might be affected by issues of sidewalks, parking, utilities relocation, fencing, etc.  He also directed attention to the Garrettsville People Tree which is collecting funds for individual tenants displaced by the fire.

James A. Garfield Local School District Superintendent Ted Lysiak gave a brief overview of the Straight A Schools  Fund Grant project going on in the district which will re-locate the fifth and sixth graders to the Central Campus of Excellence in a brand new $4 million building AND supply all students in the district with laptop computers, as well as re-purposing the Park Ave. building in partnerships with the Cleveland-area YMCA and the Portage County Educational Services Center.  Ground was being broken even as he spoke.  Also on the calendar,   an official groundbreaking ceremony—with pomp, circumstance and high-powered officials—on May 8 AND  the dedication of the new historical marker, initiated by Julie Thompson, commemorating the 1935 train robbery in Garrettsville; ceremony and other activities to be held in the Iva Walker Auditorium.

It was a good meeting.  Come and check out Rotary.

 

Rally ‘Round the Flag, Boys…and Girls!!!

This is no time to be falling into disputes that could derail the downtown reconstruction efforts before they get truly off of the ground.

#GarrettsvilleStrong has been up front about the purpose of the financial efforts being made from the very beginning.  It’s all about rebuilding, moving on, emerging bigger and better than ever before.  It is not , repeat, NOT, intended to compensate the individual owners and/or tenants of the buildings which were destroyed.  That is a can of worms (see :Megascolides australis) that no one in their right mind would choose to open when things need to move along with all deliberate speed.  Why?

Well, first of all, who and what qualifies?  Owners?  Tenants?  Fully insured? Under-insured?  Value of stock?  Cost of replacement?  Value of the commercial “draw” to the community?  Value of the “ambience”?  Contribution to the community?  When questions like these morph into who likes who better and whose merchandise was cuter, full-scale war fare is likely to break out and the cause of progress takes a back seat, waaaay back.

Second, when is this going to happen?  Empty the coffers right away to ease the immediate pain of disaster?  Hand out dribs and drabs at a time to whoever has the saddest story (Fierce competition here)?  Wait until it’s all rebuilt and help cover the cost of the grand opening?  Put it on the village Christmas wish list?

AND…how much? Offer a percentage of the insurance coverage?  Equal amounts to everyone? More for property owners?  More for business owners? Base the payment on the previous year’s tax duplicate as representative of the business’s contribution to the local economy?

Folks, this way lies madness…not to mention a tidal wave of frustration and hard feelings that would do no one any good and probably negate much of the good will and community feeling that has been evident in the widespread reaction to the event itself and in the way we all carry on as a community.  #GarrettsvilleStrong!

If individuals would like to make contribution to the folks, bless their hearts, who lost everything and are   only now beginning to emerge from the shock of the actual event to the shock of contemplating what the REAL losses were and what could be involved in coming back, make your directed contributions to the Garrettsville People Tree.  Community is the focus there and the burned-out ones are part of our community.

#GarrettsvilleStrong  is about REbuilding.  It’s about the nuts and bolts, the nitty and gritty, the down and dirty details of what has to come back : parking, fence removal, sidewalks, streetscape, utilities replacement & relocation (underground  electrical service would be nice), landscaping, design proposals, architectural features, specific donations and dedications (civic groups and individuals), plenty of things we don’t always think about, but have to BE thought about.  And, of course, what’s going to  come back in that space?

Here’s where we can all make a contribution.  Have you been thinking about having a small business of your own?  Might it be a ”niche” business that could draw customers from a wide area for your specific expertise? (Bless you,  Shaker Tree.  Bless you, Clock Man  Bless you, T&B Tools)  Do you know someone who fits this description?  Have you a hobby or collection that could form the basis of a business downtown?  Get thinking, out there!  We DO NOT need another  place to buy pizza, but a pastry shop might make it, especially if folks could watch the chef make gorgeous  icing roses or fabulous brownies or ice cream.  Think something connected with the Headwaters Trail.  Think about it.  Think Chagrin Falls.  Think Hudson.  Think Garrettsville into the future.

The place has been a commercial hub since its founding in 1804.  John Garrett had the foresight to not only bring a mill to serve the local farming community, but to bring a blacksmith, one Abraham Dyson, the equivalent of Lowe’s and Home Depot rolled into one, at the time he came over the mountains from Delaware.  The maple syrup business was huge at one time, over 50,000 gal a year by one account.  The Root Store (Chic & Shabby building) was the county’s first “department store” in 1850.  The village had the first paved main street in Portage County (The mud had got pretty deep in the rainy season—bad for business).   This is a village that can think big.  Think about it.

#GarrettsvilleStrong!

 

Fifty folks “Got Their Groove On” Saturday at the Zumba-a-Thon held at the high school with Heather Kovac. Photo: Denise Bly

Garrettsville – It has been  30 days since the historic Buckeye Block of Garrettsville was engulfed in flames and reduced to a pile of rubble. The tragic event birthed #GarrettsvilleStrong which is raising funds to ensure the historic block is rebuilt.  Weekly, there have been various groups that have registered and are holding events to raise money to rebuild the town. This weekend was no different. One could feast on all the pancakes they could eat at the elementary school and then walk over to the high school and work them off at the Zumba-a-Thon.

The James A. Garfield High School Student Council, along with the Interact Club, middle school student council and two advisors Mrs. Frances Bell and Ms. Missy Petrie were up at the crack of dawn Saturday to get ready for their pancake and sausage breakfast at the elementary school to raise funds for #Garrettsvillestrong. Students waited on customers, while Superintendent Ted Lysiak, Principals Jennifer Mulhern, Michael Dobran and Don Long manned the griddles. They not only had great pancakes and sausage, but these were topped with local maple syrup donated by local producer and maple marvel, Mark Apple. It was delicious and a great way to start off a Saturday. The event raised $1,410 for the #GarrettsvilleStrong Fund.

After having your fill of pancakes, it was time to get one’s groove on at the high school with Heather Kovac, who was holding a Zumba- a-Thon for #GarrettsvilleStrong. For an hour and a half, one could shake ‘em down  with Heather and work off the pancake breakfast while helping out their community. Fifty- plus folks took advantage of keeping their hearts strong while raising funds for #GarrettsvilleStrong. Each participant paid $10 to participate in the event.

The Zumba-a-Thon also had a gift basket raffle.  Between the gift basket and the Zumba, they raised $800 for the #GarrettsvilleStrong Fund.

 

garfield-campus-of-excellence-garrettsville-constructionGarrettsville – The Straight A Grant from the state provided the James A. Garfield Schools with some exceptional opportunities.  With these exceptional opportunities came exceptional challenges.  The district remains on a very tight timeline required by the grant.  All funds must be committed by June 30, 2014 and spent by September 30, 2014. Those funds not spent must be returned, and the district does not plan to return any of the money. This does present some unique challenges, especially for a construction project.  Regardless of these obstacles, the addition is on schedule to open for school this fall.  Here are the latest developments on each component of the grant.

Construction

Hammond Construction, from Canton, was awarded the Design/Build contract for construction of the 17,000 square foot addition.  Their crews have assembled on site and broke ground last Monday. Parent drop off and pick up traffic will be impacted for the remainder of the school year. We appreciate everyone’s patience as we navigate around the construction site.

The addition will include 8 classrooms, 2 state of the art science labs, 2 special education classrooms and a professional development center.  The professional development space will be able to comfortably seat 120 adults and contain digital projection equipment for presentations or trainings. While this space will offer a flexible instructional space for students, the district also wants to make this space available to the public for meetings.

An official groundbreaking ceremony will be held on Thursday, May 8 at 6:00 pm and is open to the public.

Technology

Laptops for students and staff have arrived and are currently being configured. In May all teachers will receive a district-issued laptop, and in August each student in grades 7-12 will be issued a Chromebook. To support the additional 750 devices, grant funds were recently used to install a substantial upgrade to the wireless network district-wide.

Partnerships

The Portage County Educational Service Center (ESC) and the Greater Cleveland YMCA are moving forward with their plans to bring their services to the community. The YMCA has brought youth soccer back to our community and already has over sixty students signed up to participate.  The ESC will soon be finalizing their space at the Intermediate School to determine how many students they can accept for public preschool this fall.

With the construction project, technology initiative and new partnerships developing as planned and on schedule, there is much to celebrate in our community. While there is a great chance to join in the celebration and excitement by attending the May 8th groundbreaking there are many other opportunities to celebrate. The spring sports season is in full-swing and provides many chances to see our students excel outside the classroom.  Schedules can be found on the district website located at http://garfield.sparcc.org.

garfield-campus-of-excellence-garrettsville-construction1

 

Photo: Hattie Larlham Facebook Page

Photo: Hattie Larlham Facebook Page

Garrettsville - Tee off with Hattie Larlham on May 21, 2014 for the 28th Annual Sugar Bush Golf Classic. Please join us out on the green at the Sugar Bush Golf Club in Garrettsville for a fun and relaxing day of golf, contests and prizes with the ultimate goal of raising funds for Hattie Larlham. Since 1986, the annual Sugar Bush Golf Classic has raised more than $630,000 through generous contributions.

There are many ways to participate in the event, including single and team registrations. This shotgun-style tournament features morning and afternoon tee times. Prizes will be handed out to top golfers in each  session for both men and women. Celebrity golfers and special guests will be present during both event sessions. This event sells out annually. Please register as early as possible to secure the tee time of choice.

Golfer’s Player Packages will be available to purchase for $25. Packages include two mulligans, two celebrity shots, two chances to hit the circle on a par 3, participation in the “guess your drive” and putting contests.

The Fraternal Order of Eagles #2436 will be sponsoring a raffle on the day of the event. The first prize winner will receive a cash prize of $1,500. The second prize winner will be treated to a Golf Package for 4 at the Barrington Golf Club.

In addition to the Golfer’s Player Packages and the Fraternal Order of Eagles #2436 raffle, the 28th Sugar Bush Golf Classic will hold various on-course contests, a “Skins Game” and 50/50 raffle. The 50/50 raffle prizes include rounds of golf and golf accessories.

With so many ways to participate, win and raise money for Hattie Larlham the 28th Sugar Bush Golf Classic is sure to be an exciting event for everyone. Be sure to register early to secure your spot for this amazing event.

If you are interested in participating in the 28th Annual Sugar Bush Golf Classic please download a registration form from our website www.hattielarlham.org, complete it and return by May 7th, 2014. Be sure to register early to secure your preferred time for this great event.

 

Registration forms may be returned by:

Mail:

Hattie Larlham

ATTN: Candrice Dalton

37996 Darrow Road, Suite #10

Twinsburg, Ohio 44087

Email: candrice.dalton@hattielarlham.org

Fax: 330.732.248

 

Garrettsville – Tracey Garrett is putting Garrettsville under the national spotlight… and it has nothing to do with the fact that she shares her last name with the village’s pioneer founder. Garrett — a pastry chef who owns and operates Top Tier Pastry from her home on Zupancic Drive — was one of five signature chefs nationwide selected to have their Valentine-themed dessert recipe featured in the February 2014 issue of Dessert Professional Magazine.

Garrettsville – This past Sunday, over 70 contestants competed in a closed audition, hoping to keep their dreams alive of becoming the next Garrettsville Idol. This was one of the largest competitions they have had in recent years and the judges, Danny Deakins, Wendi Brown and Jackie Rinearson were given the difficult task of selecting those who would move on to the semifinals. After some lengthy deliberations, 51 contestants’ dreams of being named the next Garrettsville Idol were still alive.

There will be two incredible shows for the semifinals on May 18th. The first show will start at 4pm and will feature the youth and teens, while the second show will start at 6 pm and will feature the adult contestants. Each contestant will perform an entire song with music accompaniment before a live audience at James A. Garfield High School’s Iva Walker Auditorium. The winners of the semifinals will advance to the finals held Sunday June 29th during Summerfest.

Advancing to the semifinals in the adult division (top photo) are Sara Apthorpe, Aimee Beelen, Bryan Bier, Tiffany Bolton, Christy Brown, Raelyn DeBevits, Tammy Doumanian, Stephanie Ewell, Ryan Hecky, Jeremy Keeney, Rachael Maddox, Russ Martin, Devin Maze, Josh Owens, Linda Perrault, Sarah Jane Ralston, Jackson Ramsey, Kristina Rossi, Ambur Scales, Selina Slaughter, and Jason Stachowski.

Advancing to the semifinals in the adult division are Sara Apthorpe, Aimee Beelen, Bryan Bier, Tiffany Bolton, Christy Brown, Raelyn DeBevits, Tammy Doumanian, Stephanie Ewell, Ryan Hecky, Jeremy Keeney, Rachael Maddox, Russ Martin, Devin Maze, Josh Owens, Linda Perrault, Sarah Jane Ralston, Jackson Ramsey, Kristina Rossi, Ambur Scales, Selina Slaughter, and Jason Stachowski.

 

Moving on in the teen division (center photo) are Molli Betters, Elisha Bly, Anna Brown, Taylor Brown, Emilie Clites, Corin Colton, Hannah Cottrell, Lexy Dall,  Jay Davenport, Jainequa Davis, Megan Duderstadt, Caitlyn Hallden, Kaylee Martin, Kaylee Maynard, Jasmine Nevaraz, Rachael Pelter, Mariela Ruschak, Kirsten Sellers, Hannah Simpson, Julie Simpson, Taylor Shuman, Kyle Stern, Haylee Tasker, Cody Tetting, and Kiley Weis.

Moving on in the teen division are Molli Betters, Elisha Bly, Anna Brown, Taylor Brown, Emilie Clites, Corin Colton, Hannah Cottrell, Lexy Dall, Jay Davenport, Jainequa Davis, Megan Duderstadt, Caitlyn Hallden, Kaylee Martin, Kaylee Maynard, Jasmine Nevaraz, Rachael Pelter, Mariela Ruschak, Kirsten Sellers, Hannah Simpson, Julie Simpson, Taylor Shuman, Kyle Stern, Haylee Tasker, Cody Tetting, and Kiley Weis.

Youth singers are Lillian Anderson, Alee Blohm, Makenzie Fink, Maria Roderick and Olivia Sheer.

Youth singers are Lillian Anderson, Alee Blohm, Makenzie Fink, Maria Roderick and Olivia Sheer.

Tickets for the semifinals are $3 for each show and are available at Sky Lanes Bowling Alley.  You can also reserve tickets and pick them up at the auditorium on the day of the performance by calling Aaron King at 330 524-2646.

 

Garrettsville Summerfest is traditionally held on the fourth full weekend of June at the intersection of State Routes 88 and 82 in downtown historic Garrettsville. For more information on the event visit the website, www.garrettsvillesummerfest.com 

 

Garrettsville Idol is brought to you by  The Middlefield Banking Company

Garrettsville – On Monday night over sixteen concerned Portage County residents gathered for the first of many community meetings with the Portage County Drug Task Force. Led by Village Councilwoman Becky Harrington the meeting was a “barebones” version of the presentation delivered at a special meeting in Nelson Township on April 10th (coverage on page 6 in this week’s Villager). The evening’s meeting was the starting point for the establishment of a community group focused on coming together to address the growing epidemic of drug use in the area.

Garrettsville – The James A. Garfield Sports Boosters held the first ever “Love the Dress” prom dress sale at the high school on Sunday April 6, 2014. The sports boosters were able to collect new and nearly new dresses and then resold them at a fraction of the price they originally sold for, making prom more affordable for many. All the dresses were in a variety of colors and sizes with prices starting at $5 but were no higher than $50.

This weeks upcoming fundraisers geared towards rebuilding downtown Garrettsville.

Fish Fry to Benefit Fire Victims

April 11th: Join us for a Friday Fish Fry with fresh-cut fries and coleslaw. All-You-Can-Eat is $11; Adults $8; Seniors $6; Kids (4-10) $4. The proceeds will help support #GarrettsvilleStrong and the Nelson-Garrettsville Community Food Bank.  April 4th and 11th, serving from 4:00 to 8:00pm. Carry-out, beverages and desserts are also available. LIFE CHURCH ASSEMBLY OF GOD – 10280 State Route 88; Garrettsville, OH 44231. Call (330) 357-1215 for more information.

 

Cana Valley Winery

April 16 & 17 - Visit Cana Valley Winery 5665 Waterloo Road, Atwater. A donation from each bottle of wine purchased on April 9, 10 and 16 & 17 will be donated to the GarrettsvilleStrong Fund.

 

All-U-Can-Eat Spaghetti Dinner

April 11 – The Western Reserve Kiwanis is proud to announce that proceeds from our next All-U-Can-Eat Spaghetti Dinner will go to the #GarrettsvilleStrong fund & the Nelson-Garrettsville Community Cupboard! Dinner is Friday, April 11th from 5:00-7:00 pm in Dix & the Ballroom in the Hiram College Kennedy Center. Dinner includes spaghetti with choice of meat or marinara sauce, salad, garlic bread, beverage, and ice cream, all for $ 6.00 for adults and children 8 and under FREE! Carry-out available!

 

PMG Choc. All Star Talent Showcase

April 11 – The PMG Chocolatier All Star Talent Showcase is scheduled for 7 pm on April 11th. Tickets are $10.00 each with 50 VIP seats priced at $20.00 each. We anticipate a sell-out crowd, so be sure to get your tickets early, early early by logging on to the following website. Tickets are on sale now and they will sell quickly. Do not get shut out!

 

For a complete list of fundraisers visit: http://garrettsvillearea.com/help

 

At 1: 15 PM on Saturday, March 22nd, The Village of Garrettsville suffered a fire of catastrophic proportions involving the historical area known as the Buckeye Building, situated on Main Street, in the heart of downtown Garrettsville. Garrettsville’s ladder truck. one pumper/tanker, and one tanker were all on scene and beginning fire suppression within six minutes of dispatch alerting the fire department. A total of 54 pieces of fire apparatus responded to this emergency from multiple counties, and a total of 142 firefighters (not including the retired ones who came to lend a much needed hand) were on scene fighting to contain the blaze. An estimated 1.5 million gallons of water was pumped, and 428.5 gallons of diesel fuel was used in the 50 hours and 36 minutes the fire department was present at the scene. Thankfully no fatalities were incurred, and the only reported injuries were two firefighters (both treated and released).

In spite of the loss felt by the Village that day, we were also reminded why Garrettsville is a great place to live. The outpouring of support to not only the Village itself, but to the firefighters was remarkable. The influx of water and food was staggering, and none of it went to waste as firefighters worked around the clock. It is truly impossible to thank each and every one of the individuals and organizations that contributed to relief efforts that day, but thanks go out to …. the 34 fire departments that answered our call for aid, Community EMS and NEAS for providing EMS support, Garrettsville Police for traffic and scene control, Garrettsville Water Department who monitored our village water usage, local businesses who sent food and drinks, residents who stopped by the station to drop supplies off, the ladies who came out to distribute food and drinks, Portage County EMA & FlU, Portage County Sheriffs Office, Ohio Fire Marshall, ATF, Red Cross, Salvation Army, right down to the gentlemen who lent a hand pulling hose before more firefighters arrived in the first minutes of the fire.

Special thanks to the local students who sent us letters and artwork from school the week after the fire, it brightened our day to hear how much you love Garrettsville. All of this was a reflection of what a great village we live in, and why Garrettsville is strong. I wish the community well as we heaL rebuild, and move forward after this devastating fire.

Chief David Friess
Garrettsville-Freedom-Nelson Joint Fire District

Rachel King and her team of stylists at Facet Salon & Day Spa held a “Cut & Pedi – thon” last Saturday to raise money to help rebuild Garrettsville’s historic district. The salon was thrilled to announce that they had exceeded their goal of $1,000, and would be donating $1,260 to the GarrettsvilleStrong fund at the Garrettsville Area Chamber of Commerce’s April meeting. Facet Owner Rachelle King (left), and salon Intern Amber Burnworth (right) pose for a photo between haircuts.

garrettsville-facet-salon-and-day-spa-raises-funds-garrettsvillestrong-rebuild-fundraiser

 

Garrettsville – “We are committed to to staying in Garrettsville and going back to Main Street when we can.”

These are the words of Dan Myers, who owned and operated New Hearing Sales & Services from 8115 Main Street until fire destroyed it and nearly every other business from Center Street to High Street in a historic blaze on March 22. His sentiment is echoed by most of the business owners who are scrambling now in the aftermath to relocate and regain operations elsewhere while Main Street gets cleaned up and rebuilt in the months ahead.

Garrettsville - Main Street Grille & Brewing Company’s Brewmaster Mike Mallone (left), and Head Brewer Brian Koptis (right) are brewing a special GarrettsvilleStrong Pilsner. The beer goes on sale April 26th at $5 glass. 100% of proceeds benefit the GarrettsvilleStrong fund established to aid reconstruction of the block of shops and offices lost to the fire that ravaged Garrettsville’s Historic District on March 22nd.

main-street-grille-and-brewing-company-garrettsville-garrettsvillestrong-pilsner-beer-fundraiser

Garrettsville - After over 25 years of dedicated service, Sharon Foy, Purchasing Manager of the Portage County District Library, has announced her retirement. Foy will retire from her position at the end of April.

garrettsville-library-sharon-foy-retiringHaving started her career at the Portage County District Library in 1988 working part-time in the Technical Services department, Foy soon became the Purchasing Manager. In her many years at the Portage County District Library, Foy has held an integral role in the development of several projects. Most notable has been being in charge of managing the daily operations of the facilities at the Garrettsville Library, a branch of the Portage County District Library. And what does she have planned for her retirement? “Good question! I hope to do some traveling.”

Tee up for the 28th annual Sugar Bush Golf Classic on Wednesday, May 21, at the Sugar Bush Golf Club in Garrettsville, Ohio. Sponsored by the Middlefield Banking Company and Cleveland Indians Charities, the golf classic supports children and adults with developmental disabilities at Hattie Larlham.

Celebrity golfers Bill Wills, co-host of WTAM 1100’s Wills & Snyder, and Bob DiBiasio, vice president of Cleveland Indians public relations, return to the golf classic.

Morning and afternoon tee times are available. Single golfer registration is $125. Registration for a team of four is $500. The deadline to register is Wednesday, May 7.

A continental breakfast will be served for morning golfers at 6:45 a.m. with a shotgun start at 7:45 a.m. A luncheon will be held for afternoon golfers at 12:30 p.m. with a shotgun start at 1:30 p.m. There will be an award ceremony held after each round of golf.

To register, contact Candrice Dalton at (330) 274-2272, ext. 3084, or via e-mail at candrice.dalton@hattielarlham.org.

After nine months of planning and raising funds, the James A Garfield Marching Pride saw their vision come to fruition last week as they took Disney by storm. On Saturday March 22, 2014 they began loading the buses with 73 instruments 73  marching band uniforms, 73 shakos, pairs of shoes, gloves spats, seven flag line flags, Marching Pride banner, two rifles, and honor guard flags. Next, came the luggage for 73 members, plus one director and 11 chaperones, all packed under the bus. It was like a life-size version of Tetris, fitting all the equipment in but they did it and did it well.   The buses were finally loaded and they were off to the “Happiest Place on Earth”, aka Disney.

Holy Schmoley!  Flames leaping up from the north side of the downtown commercial district.  Customers clutching purchases being hustled past the cash registers by some of G-Ville’s finest  who’d just received word that “Town’s on fire!”  Proprietors hoping against hope to save their goods and their livelihoods…in vain all too often.  Neighboring fire fighters rendering “mutual assistance” in as many ways as they could and being showered with food, drink and thanks for being there.  Traffic stopped in every direction, with law-enforcement forces at every level helping unsnarl the situation.  T.V. cameras and newspaper reporters everywhere…Saturday, Sunday, Monday…they may still be out there!  The Portage County Emergency Management  unit on call and monitoring the situation.  Local firefighters hosing down the historic Mott Building, headquarters of the James A. Garfield Historical Society, across High Street from the burning remains of the first department store in Portage County.  Hoses running across the streets in every direction until the “All clear,” on Monday.  Pumpers, aerial extension ladder trucks, tankers, everything but your kitchen fire extinguisher was out there.  Rubber-neckers from at least three counties showing up about every day since the first alarm.

What did you do on YOUR spring break?

That was just for starters.  Now comes the hard part…well…maybe not harder than watching your time and treasure, dreams and connections going up in flames…but hard to start from scratch and build a bigger and better reality on Main St.

It’s started already.

And in the meantime…remember that the OTHER side of Main St. is still open for business.  The commercial establishments there are part of the whole picture and are going to be needing support as well.  Parking is at a premium; that’s  always a downer.    The Shaker Tree, Millers’ Lawn & Garden, the Clock Man, The Barber of G-Ville, T&B Tools, Chic and Shabby, One Real Peach, even the foot doctor, the hearing aid man and the lawyers were all “draws”, reasons to come to Garrettsville.  Remember the rest of the stores and enterprises are still seeking our custom, as it were.  They have all the more need to see us all, early and often.  Their businesses need to stay strong to be a part of the resurgence downtown.  They will back measures to rebuild the other side of the street but they have to stay strong themselves.

Step up folks!  This is something that YOU can do and do FOR your community.

This weeks upcoming fundraisers geared towards rebuilding downtown Garrettsville. 

Candlelight Winery – Fundraising Event

April 4th – Friday from 6:30 – 8:30pm.

Representatives from 31 Gifts, Magnabilities, Mary Kay, Miche, Perfectly Posh, Premier Jewelry and Velata will be set up at the winery for an Evening of Shopping and Reminiscing. We will have raffle prizes, food specials and more! Anyone bringing in a non-perishable item to be donated to the Nelson-Garrettsville Community Cupboard will receive an extra raffle ticket.

 

Fish Fry to Benefit Fire Victims

April 4th & 11th: Join us for a Friday Fish Fry with fresh-cut fries and coleslaw. All-You-Can-Eat is $11; Adults $8; Seniors $6; Kids (4-10) $4. The proceeds will help support #GarrettsvilleStrong and the Nelson-Garrettsville Community Food Bank.  April 4th and 11th, serving from 4:00 to 8:00pm. Carry out, beverages and desserts are also available. LIFE CHURCH ASSEMBLY OF GOD – 10280 State Route 88; Garrettsville, OH 44231. Call (330) 357-1215 for more information.

 

Cana Valley Winery

April 9 & 10 and 16 & 17 – Visit Cana Valley Winery 5665 Waterloo Road, Atwater. A donation from each bottle of wine purchased on April 9, 10 and 16 & 17 will be donated to the GarrettsvilleStrong Fund.

 

All-U-Can-Eat Spaghetti Dinner

April 11 – The Western Reserve Kiwanis is proud to announce that proceeds from our next All-U-Can-Eat Spaghetti Dinner will go to the GarrettsvilleStrong fund & the Nelson-Garrettsville Community Cupboard! Dinner is Friday, April 11th from 5:00-7:00 pm in Dix & the Ballroom in the Hiram College Kennedy Center. Dinner includes spaghetti with choice of meat or marinara sauce, salad, garlic bread, beverage, and ice cream, all for $ 6.00 for adults and children 8 and under FREE! Carry-out available!

 

PMG Choc. All Star Talent Showcase

April 11 – The PMG Chocolatier All Star Talent Showcase is scheduled for 7 pm on April 11th. Tickets are $10.00 each with 50 VIP seats priced at $20.00 each. We anticipate a sell-out crowd, so be sure to get your tickets early, early early by logging on to the following website. Tickets are on sale now and they will sell quickly. Do not get shut out!

 

The Campus of Excellence Oversight Committee met on March 20, 2014 in the James A. Garfield Middle School to receive information and updates on the momentous project under way in the district, moving the Intermediate School to the main campus, thus gathering all the parts of the system—Elementary, Intermediate, Middle and High School, as well as the Orson E. Ott Administrative Offices and the Transportation and Maintenance Departments—onto the same campus.  The goals of this project include the  addition of the building to the existing elementary, technology across the system and sustainability (cost reduction, staff reduction, materials-use reduction).  Moving forward will involve community involvement at every phase.

“Garrettsville is burning!”

On Saturday, March 22, 2014, that message blazed out across phone lines, the internet and news agencies throughout northeast Ohio. Main Street’s newly-renovated historic Buckeye Block Building was on fire at lunchtime. Despite prompt and robust response by local and regional firefighters, the angry fire had devoured the storefronts from Center Street to High Street by dinnertime — all but the small brick building that houses the Mishler and Kohli law offices.

Garrettsville – Can you sing? Do you like to be on stage performing before others? Are you available April 13th, May 18th and June 29, 2014?  If your answer is yes to all of the above, you need to consider auditioning for this years Garrettsville Idol. Garrettsville Summerfest announces the audition dates for this year’s Garrettsville Idol, the grand finale event that closes out the Summerfest Festival every year on the fourth weekend in June. Adults will compete for a $1000 cash prize awarded to the winner at the finals held during Summerfest, while the youth and teens will each compete for $500.  

Indeed they were!   It was Payback Time.

Superintendent Ted Lysiak announced the school district's offer at Monday's Rebuild Garrettsville meeting.

Superintendent Ted Lysiak announced the school district’s offer at Monday’s Rebuild Garrettsville meeting.

The James A. Garfield Local School Board held a hastily-called meeting on Monday, March 24 to respond to the catastrophic fire which struck the business district in downtown Garrettsville.  Representatives of student groups, faculty and staff organizations,  Nelson and Freedom Township trustees, volunteers with the Nelson-Garrettsville Community Cupboard, Mayor Rick Patrick, attorney Dan Timmons joined the board (member David Vincent via Skype) to issue a resolution declaring the district’s support for the merchants and professionals who have always supported the aims and activities of the James A. Garfield Local School District. The acknowledgement of strong community partnership was key to the meeting’s direction.   Additionally, the district has offered the use of space in the Intermediate School building when  school ends in June during the transition and rebuilding period as the village rises from its ashes.

It was a tremendous outpouring.  It was an amazing, uplifting response.  It was just the beginning.

 

 

Garrettsville – The main topic of discussion after the opening of the March 12, 2014 Garrettsville village council meeting was water rates and how much of an increase there will be if council approves proposed Ordinance 2014-13.  The Board of Public Affairs (BPA) had asked a representative from Arcadis in February 2013 about a rate study for the village water utility that could be used to plan and budget future water projects and to assure current rates were adequate.  (Arcadis is company that specializes in infrastructure and water planning & design which  has consulted on infrastructure projects like the State Street water main replacement project last year and the coming Liberty Street bridge replacement project.)