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Portage County – The Digital Bookmobile National Tour (www.digitalbookmobile.com) will showcase the free eBook service from Portage County District Library at the Aurora Memorial Library on Friday, August 22 from 12:00 pm until 6:00 pm. At these free events, readers of all ages will learn how to access eBooks from the library through interactive demonstrations and high-definition instructional videos. A gadget gallery featuring all the latest portable reading devices will help visitors discover portable devices that are compatible with the library’s download service. The library is located at 115 East Pioneer Trail in Aurora. Call 330-562-6502 for more information.

Assistant Library Director Corrine Alldridge says, “Portage County District Library has offered Overdrive downloadable service since 2008.  When we learned that the Digital Bookmobile was coming back to Ohio, we were very excited about this unique way to share and showcase our digital service.  People who are curious about the whole eBook phenomena will love having a chance to play with gadgets and see what the library has to offer.”

Portage County District Library card holders can also check out digital titles anytime, anywhere by visiting http://overdrive.portagelibrary.org. Library patrons can take advantage of the service 24/7 when they visit the library’s website. From there, they can browse the growing collection of bestselling, new release, and classic titles, and check out a digital title with a valid Portage County District Library card. Once the digital titles have been checked out, they can enjoy them in the browser or transfer them to their computer or a supported mobile device. Many audio titles can also be burned to audio CD. At the end of the lending period, titles will automatically expire and are returned to the digital collection. There are never any late fees or damaged items.

The Digital Bookmobile is housed inside an 18-wheel tractor-trailer. This 74-foot community outreach vehicle is a high-tech update of the traditional bookmobile that had served communities for decades. The vehicle is equipped with broadband Internet-connected PCs, high definition monitors, premium sound systems, and a variety of portable media players, all of which help visitors explore Portage County District Library’s digital service. Interactive learning stations give visitors an opportunity to search the library’s digital media collection, use supported mobile devices, and sample eBooks and audiobooks.

The Digital Bookmobile is a service of the Portage County District Library and is operated by Overdrive, Inc. To check out digital books and more, visit http://overdrive.portagelibrary.org. For more information about other library programs and services, visit Portage County District Library online at www.portagelibrary.org.

Aurora - James A. Garfield Senior, Anna Brigham was awarded the “Saved by the Belt Award” by the Ohio State Patrol at Aurora Farms Outlets in Aurora, Ohio Saturday, May 17, 2014 at their annual kick-off for the “Click it or Ticket” campaign.

brigham-aurora-garfieldstudent-seatbeltMiss Brigham survived a head-on collision during blizzard-like conditions on February 27, 2014 near the intersection of State Routes 303 and 88 in Freedom Township. Although Anna suffered minor injuries, she realizes she is here today because she wore a seatbelt.

This award was brought back this year after several years of hiatus and was presented to Anna by Ohio State Troopers Sergeant Bruce D. Zuchowski and Trooper Griffin Kelly; both troopers represent the Hiram Patrol Post, which serves an 82 mile stretch of the Ohio Turnpike.

The program that awards the “Saved by the Belt Award” is Safe Communities, which is an educational division of Portage County that is financed to raise awareness for seatbelt safety based on a three year period of fatalities within the county.

Here are some recent statistics on seat belt use or lack thereof:

1: 63% of fatalities are caused from not wearing a seatbelt

2: Data suggests education alone is just not doing the job, especially for males ages 16-25. They just don’t think they’ll be injured or killed in an accident

3: If  90% of Americans buckle up, we will prevent more than 5,500 deaths and 132,000 injuries annually.

4: The cost of unbuckled drivers and passengers goes beyond those killed and the loss to their families. We all pay for those who don’t buckle up ¬ in higher taxes, higher health care and higher insurance costs.

On average, inpatient hospital care costs for an unbelted crash victim are 50% higher than those for a belted crash victim. Society bears 85% of those costs, not the individuals involved. Every American pays about $580 a year toward the cost of crashes. If everyone buckled up, this figure would drop significantly.


Motorists who refuse to wear their seat belts – beware.  The 2014 national Click It or Ticket seat belt enforcement mobilization kicked off May 19 to help save lives by cracking down on those who don’t buckle up.

The Hiram Police Department is joining with other state and local law enforcement officers and highway safety advocates across the country to help save more lives by strongly enforcing seat belt laws around the clock.

While this year’s Click It or Ticket enforcement mobilization runs from May 21 through June 3, motorists should know that officers are out enforcing seat belt laws year-round.


Aurora – The local Home Instead Senior Care® office is offering a unique approach to help Portage County area families manage the challenges of Alzheimer’s and other dementias, diseases that eventually rob seniors of their memories and independence. Free training for families caring for these older adults is now available through a Family Education Workshop to be held on Wednesday, May 14 at 6:00p.m.  at Independence Village 505 S. Chillicothe Rd., in Aurora.

The Alzheimer’s or Other Dementias CARE: Changing Aging through Research and EducationSM Training Program offers a personal approach to help families care for seniors with Alzheimer’s disease at home, where 60 to 70 percent live, according to the Alzheimer’s Association.

“Until there is a cure, we offer an interim solution,” said Therese Kovatch, RN, owner of the local Home Instead Senior Care office.

The foundation of the Alzheimer’s CARE Training Program is an approach called “Capturing Life’s Journey®” that involves gathering stories and experiences about the senior to help caregivers provide comfort while honoring the individual’s past.  Because people with Alzheimer’s disease have difficulty with short-term memory, the Capturing Life’s Journey approach taps into long-term memory.

The Home Instead Senior Care network assembled the top experts in Alzheimer’s disease to develop the CARE approach. “The training we’re offering to families is the same kind of training our professional CAREGiversSM receive,” she noted.

The program for family caregivers will cover subjects such as: Alzheimer’s Disease or Other Dementias Overview; Capturing Life’s Journey; Techniques to Manage Behaviors; and Activities to Encourage Engagement. Also available is a free guide for those who are caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease or other dementias. Called Helping Families Cope, the guide includes advice to help families keep their loved ones engaged and manage behaviors.

“CARE is a wonderful hands-on approach that helps caregivers deal with the behavioral changes that too often accompany these disorders – one of the biggest stressors for caregivers,” said Dr. Jane F. Potter, chief of the Division of Geriatrics and Gerontology at the University of Nebraska Medical Center. “There was previously no good program available using adult education techniques to provide hands-on practice in learning how best to help people who suffer from dementia. This is huge,” she added.

“The preferred environment for those with dementia is generally at home,” said Potter, who served on the expert panel to help develop content for the Alzheimer’s CARE Training Program.

And yet, families caring for seniors with Alzheimer’s at home are dealing with challenging behaviors such as anger, aggression, wandering and refusing to eat, according to research conducted for the Home Instead Senior Care network.

“That makes the Alzheimer’s Disease or Other Dementias CARE Training Program a solution for the many families in our area who are being impacted each day by devastating side effects of this disease,” Kovatch said.

For more information on the May 14 workshop or to RSVP please contact Home Instead Senior Care at 330-995-1522 or 330-297-1700.  You can also find additional resources and an e-learning course at HelpforAlzheimersFamilies.com


Now through April 30, Great Clips of Aurora and Great Clips of Twinsburg are collecting non-perishable food items to assist the Nelson Garrettsville Community Cupboard.  The food pantry serves 80-100 families per month and lost their entire stock in the recent fire that devastated downtown Garrettsville.

Great Clips of Aurora and Twinsburg invites people to make a donation of a non-perishable food item and receive a corresponding discount on a future haircut: donate one non-perishable item and receive $1 off your next haircut.  Donating two items receives a $2 discount, and donating three items receives a $3 discount.  Discounts must be redeemed by June 30, 2014.  While the discount is limited to a maximum of $3, customers are free to contribute more if they would like.  The salons are locally owned and all donations will go to the food pantry to benefit our neighbors in need.

Great Clips of Aurora is located at 105 Barrington Town Square (next to Starbucks) and Great Clips of Twinsburg is located at 8934 Darrow Road (next to Giant Eagle).  Hours of operation are Monday through Friday 9:00AM to 9:00PM; Saturday 9:00AM to 6:00PM and Sunday 10:00AM to 5:00PM.  Online check-in is available to save you time.  For more information, call 330-405-3440 (Twinsburg) or 330-562-6336 (Aurora).

Aurora – Ever wonder what kinds of creatures can be found in a creek? We’ll start at the Moebius Nature Center, 929 E Mennonite Rd  in  Aurora,  and take a short hike to the creek for this program on July 14th from 2-4pm. Get ready to explore what lives just below the surface using seines and dip nets. Cleveland Metro Parks naturalist Jeff Riebe will be our guide. We’ll search for minnows, aquatic insects and salamanders. Wettable shoes and clothing are highly recommended. Dip nets are available in addition to bringing our own; if you have them. There is no cost to attend this program. This program is intended for adults and children 8 years and up. Register at www.mymnc.org before the event or join us on site.


Aurora – FREE FAMILY FUN – Prizes, Giveaways and More! A fun FREE way to learn more about Aurora and surrounding area businesses. On Saturday, July 20, 2013 “Tour Stops” will be offering activities, freebies, discounts and much more. Simply print a map from our website www.AllAboutAurora.com and start your adventure! Once you have completed the required number of stops, turn in the completed map at Aurora Farms Premium Outlets for the grand prize drawing basket worth over $1000! The finale will include an ice cream social and live musical entertainment. Maps are currently available to print at www.AllAboutAurora.com and at participating businesses.
Tour the City of Aurora and surrounding area businesses: 10 am to 3 pm
Ice Cream Social Finale & Prize Drawing at Aurora Farms Premium Outlets Gazebo: 3 pm to 4 pm. Maps must be validated and turned in by 3:30 pm to qualify.
Presented by: Aurora Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau
Sponsored by: Aurora Farms Premium Outlets, Aurora Manor Skilled Nursing & Rehabilitation, Robinson Health Center at Aurora


Join us for the 29th Annual Aurora Fun Run! Choose from the 5K Run or the 1 Mile Walk/Run or do both! Run / walk takes place at Bicentennial Park, 115 East Pioneer Trail. Start times are:
5K Run – 8:30 a.m.; 1 Mile Run/Walk  8:00 a.m.
Online registration is $17 for one race or $19 for both
Race-Day registration is $20 for one or $22 for both

Aurora’s Fourth of July parade kicks off at 11 a.m.from  Heinen’s in Barrington Town Square.

Independence Day Festival will be held from noon until 4 p.m. at the Kiwanis-Moore Park.

Fireworks will be held at dusk  (approximately 9:45 p.m.) at the West Pioneer Trail – baseball fields


Aurora – The City of Aurora’s plan to purchase and restore a portion of the Aurora Golf Club and restore the 186-acre section, which includes over 8,000 feet of the Aurora Branch of the Chagrin River and 13 acres of wetlands, is moving forward. The property now belongs to the city and this fall, the city will issue their Request for Proposals pending the outcome of its case at the appeals commission. The city procured the property due to a $4.7 grant from the Water Resource Restoration Sponsor Program (WRRSP).


Aurora – The City of Aurora hosted their 5th annual Bark Bone-anza Sunday, May 19th at Tails n’ Trails, the city’s dog park near Sunny Lake Park. The event is largely planned and run by Freedom Greyhound Rescue (FGR).

According to Colleen Martin, the Community Events Coordinator for Aurora’s Parks and Recreation Department, Bark Bone-anza started five years ago after the city opened the dog park. That was when Peggy Hilinski stepped forward.

Hilinski is the President of Freedom Greyhound Rescue. FGR is a non-profit organization that is run entirely by volunteers. They rescue greyhounds and place them into foster homes because they do not have a physical site to hold them in kennels. According to Hilinski, “We get our dogs from Florida and then place them here. Our intention is to get the dogs from the track retired. They’re race dogs, and some of them only last 18 months, others 5 years, and then they’re destroyed, so we find homes for them.”

She decided to plan events such as the Bark Bone-anza not only to help educate the community about FGR, but also to help other rescues. “We do this to raise awareness for all the local rescues, and we also held a pledge walk. Any pledges that we get are split amongst the groups that participate.”

According to the FGR website, the next event benefiting the group is the Dog Days of Summer car wash taking place at Waterway Carwash. One dollar of each carwash is to be donated to FGR. For more information, visit www.freedomgreyhoundrescue.org

Aurora – On Sunday, May 19th, the City of Aurora’s Park & Recreation Department and Freedom Greyhound Rescue of Aurora invite you to paw-ticipate in the 2013 BARK BONE-ANZA CHARITY DOG WALK sponsored by Purina Pro Plan’s Rally to Rescue.

The event is held at Tails and Trails Dog Park (adjacent to Sunny Lake Park) 841 Page Road in Aurora, Ohio  44202.  Hours are from 10:00am to 3:00pm. Cost: Free. The 2-mile Charity Dog Walk kicks off the event at 10am.  Registration $10/person (includes breakfast and pup pack).  Prizes awarded for top 3 pledges.  Pledges will be disbursed among participating rescue groups at the event.

Following the walk, the competition heats up for prizes in the Charity Dog Challenges including the Biscuit Bite Off (homemade dog treat contest), Country Western Costume Contest, Doggie Limbo, Tower of Temptation…and more! Dress up your pup and enter the All Breeds Fashion Show! Visit rescues and vendors!  Pet owners will enjoy letting their dogs romp in the one acre fenced dog pens. Please note – designated pens for large dogs (over 25 pounds) and small dogs (under 25 pounds). For more information, visit www.freedomgreyhoundrescue.org or email rescue1.fgr@gmail.com or call 330-562-0555,

Aurora -  Aurora Memorial Library partnered with the Aurora Historical Society to hold a quilt code scavenger hunt this week. The quilt codes are from the Underground Railroad and Civil War era clues that helped escaped slaves reach freedom.

Auburn – After 34 years of civil service, Craig Sirna retired from the Bedford Heights Police force to spend   his days with his wife, Ann and daughter Kristen in the operation of their family farm.  In honor of Craig, a retirement party was held at Sirna’s Farm and Market.  A guest list of 350 people consisting of family, friends and neighbors, were given one request by Sirna.  In lieu of gifts, he requested all monetary donations be made to WomenSafe.


Aurora – Home Instead Senior Care has been recognized for the fourth year in a row as a winner of The Business Growth Award, presented by Smart Business and Cascade Capital Corporation. This award was created in recognition of the existing and increasingly significant role area small companies play towards the continuing economic growth and vitality of our local area. It honors small businesses located in Summit, Medina, Portage, Wayne, Ashland, Stark and Holmes counties that have prominently increased sales and/or employment over the past five years. Small business owners today create the vast majority of new job opportunities across the United States, and through the combined sale of their goods and services, account for over 50% of the Gross Domestic Product of the United States as well

Aurora – The Aurora Historical Society held an Antiques Appraisal Fair Saturday, October 13th at the library gallery and Aurora Historical Society Museum.
According to Diane Oberle, who is a chairperson at the historical society, the antique dealers’ specialties included, but were by no means limited to, coins, books, paintings, figurines and watches. “Our appraisers all volunteered their time. Their entire day has been devoted to us.”


Aurora – Saturday, September 22nd at 7pm, Aurora High School will behosted Thunder Over Aurora for the fourth year in a row. Thunder Over Aurora is an extended half-time show held at the high school’s Veterans Memorial Stadium.
Thunder Over Aurora was started in 2009 in response to the public’s enjoyment of the high school marching band’s show. According to the Aurora Band Boosters Board Vice President, Chris Meyer, the district wanted to “showcase the instrumental music programs at Aurora and surrounding communities,” and the performances allows spectators to experience the music from a “broad spectrum of bands from various schools.” A major factor in being able to host this event, Meyer said, was the installation of artificial turf at the stadium back in 2009.
Audience members can expect to hear six separate performance; the marching bands from Euclid, Notre Dame Cathedral Latin, James A. Garfield, Lakewood, and the Riverside Regiment are scheduled to participate, and Aurora’s own marching band will play the closing performance for the evening. In all, nearly 750 performers are anticipated.
Meyer said, “the presentation of the show continues to be a combined effort between Aurora’s administration, Instrumental Music Department, Athletic Department, Band Boosters, and many, many parent volunteers.” The show, which functions as a fundraiser for the Aurora Band Boosters, has been the most profitable fundraising event, according to Lindsay Draime, the Aurora City Schools Director of Bands. “This event has been a wonderful project… We invite the community to attend this event to show support for these wonderful band programs and music in the schools.”

Photo: Michael Braddock

Aurora – Aurora Farms Premium Outlets teamed up with the City of Aurora to hold Truck Day Saturday, August 4th. From 10-2, families strolled around Aurora Farms, with the children weaving between and climbing on trucks of all sorts. Some even mischievously tugged the air horn cables to unleash a blast that caused the passersby to jump. 

Portage APL held it’s 5th annual Paws for Golf charity outing at Aurora Golf Club Saturday, August 4th. In front of the main entrance, a fleet of golf carts awaited drivers, with a sign hung amongst them proclaiming: “Portage APL Thanks You!”

Aurora – The City of Aurora Parks and Recreation Department has  teamed up with local businesses to provide a free concert every other Wednesday this summer. From 7-9 p.m., family-oriented music will be played by live bands out of the Breezy Point Park gazebo, with plenty of free parking located in the shopping center parking lot off of W. Garfield Road. 


Aurora – On May 16th the Aurora Study Club will celebrate its 100th birthday!!! The Study Club is the oldest existing club in Aurora.

In 1912 The older women in town were concerned that the younger women were too frivolous, spending too much time playing cards & that they needed to expand their knowledge of the world. This led to the founding of the Aurora Study Club, by Orsa Harmon. They chose one topic for the year & met twice a month. Women had to be invited to join this prestigious club and failure to attend a meeting or to complete project assignments led to fines for the offending members. The Study Club was especially proud to be federated by the Club Women Of America in 1915.

Past president, Joan Tomko, will present a further look at the club’s history.

We also look forward to be entertained by Paula Messner who is a well known actress & singer. Her program is titled “A Little Song! A Little Humor!” She will be accompanied, on the piano, by Anne Ramsay.

Meeting time will be at 1:00 at the Church In Aurora’s fellowship hall. Guest are welcome.

Aurora – The Church in Aurora is one of the most prominent landmarks in the City of Aurora.  With its towering white steeple and beautiful architecture there is no question why so many couples, my husband and myself included, choose to share their wedding vows there every year. This is the perfect setting for every fairy tale wedding. It is center stage in Aurora, across the street from the town’s gazebo, a perfect place to snap those once- in-a-lifetime wedding photos. As a little girl I used to drive by the church and see the beautiful brides in front of the church and hope that some day I would be the bride walking out the front doors of the white church, surrounded by many bridesmaids and bubbles, listening to the majestic church bells ringing as I walked down that path to wedded bliss. This fantasy came true for me in April of 2008. Since that day the Church in Aurora has been such a special place for me, I wanted to honor it by sharing a little of its history and encourage everyone in the community to check it out.
Although many young couples begin their futures in the Church in Aurora, the church, both building and congregation, has a very rich history. The church can be traced back to the early 1800’s when a young Reverend was sent from the Missionary Society of Connecticut to minister to the settlers of the Western Reserve. As there were only a couple of families to preach to, the congregation first met in homes of the settlers and then later in the Aurora town hall and school. The church was officially established in 1809 with a growing congregation but still no building to call home. Soon the congregation decided to take on the task of raising a church building.  Finances being very depressed at the time, the church members donated their time and materials for the building project instead of money.  After much hard work, prayer and fundraising the church building was erected in 1822 and finally dedicated in 1824. At the time of its dedication, the building had a brick exterior and much smaller footprint than the structure that stands today. The brick church served the community well but by the 1870’s it had to be torn down. Soon after, a new wood structure would take its place.  That wood structure is the center of the white church that is still standing.
Over the last decades the building has had several face lifts and expansions, bringing it to be the beauty that it is today. The sanctuary, the only original piece of the 1870 building remaining,  is the home of a beautiful and quite massive, organ that was added during World War I.  It was built in honor of those church members that served in the war.
Serving God and the community in Aurora for more than two centuries, the Church in Aurora is more than a historical landmark and site for weddings. It is still a place for the local community members to come together and worship.  Services are held each Sunday at the Church in Aurora at 9:30 AM and 11:00AM.  The church offers many activities for its members and also for other  members of the community.  Rev. Dr. William Schnell, the current Senior Pastor, and Rev. Kevin Horak, the Associate Pastor, are also involved in the community. You can often see Rev. Horak stepping out from behind the pulpit and onto the stage at Aurora’s local community theater.
The church also invites the residents of the local area  in each year for its annual The Nutcracker Sweets Fine Arts and Crafts Show.  It is held each fall at the church and will be held again this year in October.  This is a great opportunity see all of the local crafts and crafters but also get a peek at this great historical landmark that we have in our own community.
Whether it is for a Sunday morning service, a wedding or a craft show, everyone should share in the beauty of this treasure that we have in our own back yard.


Aurora – Award-winning local author Thrity Umrigar will be speaking and signing copies of her new novel, The World We Found, on Saturday, April 28, at 1:30 p.m. at the Aurora Memorial Library. In her fourth novel, Umrigar, who is a native of Bombay, India, explores class and religious distinctions in modern day India as college friends who have grown apart are reunited when one is stricken with cancer.  Her previous books include The Space Between Us, If Today Be Sweet, and Bombay Time, as well as the memoir, First Darling of the Morning.


Aurora – On April 22 through 29, an empty warehouse in Aurora will become the stage for the village’s annual spring treasure trove sale, which organizers say has raised more than $80,000 for local sports teams, clubs and more.
The event, held at 999 Chillicothe Road just south of Aurora Farms, will kick off April 22 at 10 a.m. with early bird hours until noon.


Aurora – Each year, the American Red Cross presents the Real Heroes awards to those residents of Portage County who have acted courageously and selflessly in a time of emergency, often at great risk and sacrifice to their own personal safety and well-being. These ordinary individuals have acted courageously by reaching out to help others in times of greatest need. Disasters were averted and lives were saved.  This year’s event will be held on Saturday, April 14 at 10 am at the Bertram Hotel and Conference Center in Aurora.  Cost for the event is $25.00 per person.  Reservations may be made online at www.summitcounty.redcross.org, or by contacting Shelley Sprang at 330-535-2224 or shelley.sprang@redcross.org.


Aurora – The Rotary Club of Aurora was chartered in June of 2000. Rotary Clubs traditionally hold fundraiser events to provide funds to finance its various projects, locally, nationally and internationally. As a new club, we had to create a fundraiser. We had little experience. One member had experienced a fundraiser in Grand Rapids, MI called the Taste of the Chamber. The Chamber of Commerce invited all its food related members to present samples to a “Business after Hours” event held at a very nice local museum. It proved to be a success there and our club decided to hold the Taste of Aurora as our first major fundraiser. The first event was held in 2001 at The Bertram Inn. The Bertram generously donated the space. There were eleven local restaurants offering tasty delights to the crowd of 250 ticket purchasers, much better interest than we expected. Four local artists displayed their artwork and the Hudson Jazz Project provided musical entertainment. This first event netted $4,800 for Rotary scholarships and projects. The second Taste of Aurora was also held at the Bertram and introduced a silent auction to the event, a significant improvement to the revenue opportunity. Eight restaurants participated and it was another financial success. The third Taste changed venue to Independence Village and the fourth event moved to Our Lady of Perpetual Help church. It netted $13,100 and featured the energetic musical group, Focus, entertaining from the church balcony. Attendance had climbed to 264 and the church was so crowded that the fifth returned to The Bertram. Eighteen restaurants participated, helping to net $16,000. Attendance grew to 373, straining the facility space. Sponsorships were offered in this fifth year, significantly adding to the revenue received. Sponsorships continued to be sold in subsequent years. 2006 saw the Taste of Aurora move to the Signature of Solon. Increasing attendance forced a move to provide adequate space. Restaurants increased to 20, and this first year at Signature of Solon, attendance dropped slightly to 346 and net revenue to $11,800. In 2008 net revenue was $17,500 once again on attendance of 415. This success continued through 2011. Maximum attendance occurred in 2009 at 459 and maximum net revenue in 2011 at $19,500. Attendance has been over 400 for the last 5 years, limiting the locations, which can comfortably host this large crowd. In 2007 a raffle ticket sale was introduced. Raffle tickets were sold during the dining session for a drawing to find a winner of a major item. Big screen TV’s proved to be an attraction to boost raffle sales. In 2010, the Rotary Club began to sell reserved tables of 10 at a slight premium price. They have proven to be very popular and will be offered again in 2010. The taste was renamed in 2011 to The Taste of the Western Reserve to better accommodate the restaurants, which come from Aurora and beyond our boundaries. The new name has been well received. The Taste has proven to be a venerable fundraiser event and the Rotary Club of Aurora plans to continue to offer it into the future. It has become a significant social event in the spring of each year. Many people look forward to it and return every year to enjoy the gastronomical delights offered by such respected local restaurants and chefs. The funds raised by the Taste have been the source of the Rotary Club’s funding of projects. Projects include, among others: Scholarships for high school students, purchase of the police dog, Sayro, for the Aurora Police Department, support of childhood AIDS home for orphans in Africa, water wells in Africa and Latin America, a tool shed for Leighton School, computers for a Latin America school and food donations to The Volunteers of America food bank in Aurora. In 2012, The Taste of the Western Reserve will be held at Signature of Solon from 4-7pm on April 29. Tickets are $35 per person in advance, $40 at the door, and reserved tables for 10 are available for $400. Ticket information is available from Dick Garner, 330 562-9543.


Aurora – The Doll Gatherers Cloth Doll Club from Aurora, Ohio is now polishing up the final touches for another spectacular, theme-related doll makers’ conference. THE DOLL PARTY GALA 2012 will be held at Punderson Resort in Newbury, Ohio on May 18-20 and will feature very popular and well-known doll art designers: Lillian Alberti (Warwick NY), Susan Barmore (Louisville, KY), (Arley Berryhill (Albuquerque, NM), Deanna Hogan (Astonia,OR), and Cyndi Mahlstadt (Redfield, IA). All pre-paid and registered participants will enjoy a weekend of doll making workshops, doll exhibits and various other activities related to doll-making interest. This event is planned to include Beginner to Advanced doll makers. Visit www.clothdollconnection.com/dollgatherers for detailed information or contact Joan Stephens Coordinator) at DGdolling@AOL.com This conference IS NOT related to or for collectible dolls.


Aurora – Fairway Fitness in Aurora is hosting its first Health and Wellness Fair at the Aurora Golf Club on March 4th from 12 p.m. – 4 p.m.  “Healthy Life.  Happy Life.” is the theme and if you have been putting off your New Year’s Resolution to live a healthier lifestyle, coming to the health fair is a step in the right direction.   Admission is FREE and you can meet experts from various professions in the health care industry, participate in FREE fitness classes, activities for kids, sample healthy foods, along with chances to win prizes and FREE giveaways! 


Aurora – Over ten years in development, the Amish Heritage Center, in collaboration with the Florian K. Lawton Foundation, will provide a rich visual and historical program that will encourage a better understanding of the Amish and English visitors that migrated from 18th century Europe, spanning all the way to present day North East Ohio. The Amish Heritage Center is projected to open in mid – June 2012, in Settler’s Village on  Old State Road adjacent to the Swiss Cheese facility.
The Amish Heritage Center will focus on presenting the story of the Geauga and Northeastern Ohio Amish Settlement to a diverse audience, including local residents and international visitors, through education and exhibits. The story of this Amish Settlement will be presented from its roots in Europe through their migration and settlement throughout the United States, finally ending on the reasons and motivations for settling in Geauga County. The Amish Heritage Center will increase awareness through the collection, preservation, and presentation of the Geauga Amish Settlement story.
“It’s time Ohioans, and people around the country, realize more clearly the contribution these modern day pioneers have made to our state and give them the respect their culture deserves,” said Kenneth Lawton, Director of the Florian K. Lawton Foundation.
With a clear vision toward education, the Amish Heritage Center will provide educators, scholars and the interested public an opportunity to see changing seasonal programs that provide an understanding of how the North Eastern Ohio’s Amish community has contributed to this state and country. One of these great accomplishments is turning Ohio into the third-largest maple sugar producer in the United States.
About the Florian K. Lawton Foundation
The Florian K. Lawton Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the art of Florian K. Lawton, who spent his time portraying the world of Amish America through his artwork. The organization offers museums and institutions around the world the opportunity to share the beauty of Lawton’s oeuvre, created over a fifty year span of his career. The foundation will provide a medium for scholars and the public interested in the Amish culture to continue the legacy of the Amish people and Lawton’s vision of beauty as seen in nature and the simplicity of the Amish culture. For more information, visit www.fklfoundation.org.


Aurora – The Aurora Chamber of Commerce is hosting its annual All About Aurora showcase of area businesses and organizations on Saturday, March 3, 2012 at Aurora High School from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Last year’s Showcase attracted 50 exhibitors and nearly 500 visitors.  The chamber is currently accepting applications from exhibitors for this event.

Registration forms are available at www.allaboutaurora.com and also by calling the chamber office at 330-562-3355.

This year the plans are shaping up for an even bigger event with choirs, beloved animal characters, Soap Box Derby cars and a clown who creates balloon art. Showcase sponsors include: Anna Maria of Aurora, Aurora Farms Premium Outlets, Aurora City Schools, Wild Water Kingdom and the Record Publishing Company.

For more information please contact, Mary Sullivan at 330-562-3355.

League of Women Voters

Aurora – The League of Women Voters of Northern Portage County recently held their annual meeting at Doogan’s of Aurora. The featured speaker for the annual meeting was Portage County Commissioner Tommie Jo Marsillio. Seated in front: Doreene McDonald, Tommie Jo Marsillio, Marty Sickinger, and Linda Sieber. In the 2nd row are: Dr. Carol Redmond, Sue Griffey; and Pat Fitzgerald. In the back row are: Jean Thomas, Jean Hogan, Andrea Story, Joan Greig, and Cheryl Chlysta.
Those interested in additional information or membership in the League, please contact Pat Fitzgerald at 330-562-8410.



Aurora – Aurora Historical Society invites the community to a Grand Re-Opening Party at the Aurora Historical Museum from  2 to 4 pm Sunday, May 22, lower level of the Aurora library building, 115 E. Pioneer Trail.The party will feature a ribbon-cutting ceremony, guided tours through the renovated archives, activities for children, including an up-close look at Aurora’s historic fire truck, a new exhibit on early Aurora homes and structures, door prizes and free refreshments.“This is a great opportunity for residents and their families to tour the restored museum, including back rooms that are usually closed to the public, and to hear the story about the flooding that spurred the recent renovation,” John Kudley, Historical Society president said.The museum has been closed since the incursion of water into the archival storage room in the summer of 2010. Rapid response and close cooperation between the Society and the city of Aurora helped mitigate the damage. The museum is housed in the city-owned building, which in turn is overseen by the Aurora Library Trust.Museum members, city officials, friends and the community will honor the volunteers who spent endless hours on the meticulous clean-up and celebrate the restoration of the museum’s extensive collection of furniture, commercial, agricultural and home accessories, tools, memorabilia, textiles, maps, photographs, documents and books used by residents and businesses in Aurora for the last 212 years.Grand Re-Opening visitors will also enjoy:Five historical project applications submitted by Aurora High School seniors who applied for the Vernon Biggar Scholarship. The award winner will be honored at the ribbon-cutting ceremony at the start of the program. The permanent museum exhibit:  “CHEESEDOM: Quality Cheese Making Brings Early Fame, Profit and Employment to Aurora.”New comprehensive exhibit: “Historic Homes and Structures of Aurora, Ohio”.Aurora Historical Museum is open to the public from 2 to 4 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday, or by appointment. For more information call 330-995-3336.
The Aurora Historical Society is committed to enhancing & maintaining the community identity of Aurora by preserving & communicating its rich history. For more information: 330-995-3336, info@aurorahistorical.org, or www.aurorahistorical.org.

Aurora – Aurora Memorial Library would  like to  remind teens that there is still time to sign up to see authors Lisa and Laura Roecker (pictured above) discuss their debut novel, The Liar Society, a murder mystery set against the backdrop of an elite private school.  The authors will appear on Saturday, May 7, at 1:30 p.m. in the downstairs gallery.  Refreshments will be served, and teens can enter to win a copy of The Liar Society. There will be a book signing afterwards and copies of the book will be available for purchase.The Aurora Memorial Library is located at 115 East Pioneer Trail in Aurora. To register, teens may call the library at 330-562-6502 or visit www.portagelibrary.org. To learn more about the Roeckers and their journey into writing a young adult book, check out their blog at http://lisa-laura.blogspot.com/.