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The Geauga County Retired Teachers’ Association will hold their annual picnic on Tuesday August 5th at Swine Creek Park in Middlefield at the Lake Side Shelter. Swine Creek Park is located at 15900 Hayes Rd. which turns off of Rte 87 east of Middlefield. (Please refer to a map which is posted on our website: gerta.net.) Attendees may gather at 11:15 with a business meeting beginning at 11:30 followed by picnic lunch at noon.

Each participant is asked to bring their own table service and a dish to pass. Pulled pork sandwiches will be supplied by Nancy Speck, and drinks will also be provided. After the meal, the Grant in Aid recipients will be introduced and presented with their awards.

Please RSVP to Nancy Speck at 440-286-3864. Guests are encouraged to bring a newly retired teacher, school personnel, or another guest who may need a ride. The association will be accepting donations of flour or kidney beans for The Geauga County Hunger Task Force, as well as SCHOOL SUPPLIES FOR GEAUGA STUDENTS.

If transportation is needed to the picnic, please contact Geauga Transit at 440-285-2222 or 440-564-7131 ext. 5160 a week before the scheduled event to make your reservation.

 

Garrettsville - The Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary Club meeting on July 14, 2014 at Cal’s II began with the “Passing of the Pig”  to celebrate significant events of the preceding week; these included : a son’s attainment of The Order of the Arrow in Boy Scouts, marvelous mileage in a new car, the good life and a guest in attendance, a mortgage fulfilled, a baby brother’s birthday, a return from a successful family vacation, progress on the new school construction, the passing and appreciation of a beloved mother-in-law, a graduation/family reunion.  The “Days of Our Lives”.

Guest Steve Jenkins, with the Funeral Directors’ Life Insurance Company spoke briefly about    the topic he knows a lot about, pre-need planning for end-of-life situations.  With the actuarial disruptions caused by lengthening life spans, too many people are likely to misjudge their needs in terms of long-term care and funeral expenses.  The MedicAid  spend-down required is not well understood and unforeseen consequences can throw a monkey wrench into even  seemingly well-planned situations.  The issue of closure for the bereaved often takes a backseat to money when planning is done but it does not necessarily go away.  The FDLIC encourages pre-planning to mitigate the disruptions which can come about through lack of understanding between   family members.

Steve Zabor, of the Mantua-Shalersville Rotary Club, representing the District6630 grants committee, issued an invitation to a meeting—August 6 at Jake’s– being organized by Edie Benner for consideration of a possible joint project among the G-H and M-S and Aurora clubs focusing on the Headwaters Trail, its community and economic  potential.  He also brought a heads-up about “Rotary Days”, a point of interest for Rotary International and President Gary Huang, inviting communities across the globe to participate in activities, especially outdoor activities, with Rotarians to foster appreciation of the great outdoors, physical pursuits and   good neighbors.

Rachel Schwan is anticipating a 6-hour flight to Thailand, beginning on August 6 (Guess she’ll miss the meeting).  She can brush up on her language skills, learning Thai.

The Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary Club will be sponsoring a hole at the G-Men Football Golf Outing coming soon AND contributing to a fabulous New York learning experience for the Candance Academy, involving master classes, a lesson with the Rockettes and the new version of “Cinderella” on Broadway.  Supporting the community is what it’s all about.  Light Up Rotary!

 

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Mantua - The U.S. Flag Code stipulates that when an American flag has served its useful purpose, “it should be destroyed, preferably by burning.” Recently Mantua’s American Legion Post 193 conducted a disposal ceremony of unserviceable flags at the Mantua Village Park. Such ceremonies are solemn occasions for the retirement of unserviceable flags. As such, the ceremony, which was originally scheduled for June 14th, was moved to June 21st so the ceremony wouldn’t conflict with the Soap Box Derby, which took place at the Park on Flag Day.

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Back row: Bernard Kinter, Robert MacLearie, Commander Mark C. Bray, Sargent at Arms Russell Workman, Eric Six, Roy Mayfield, Ralph Bright. Front row: Chaplain Jesse Crate, Alvin Sweet, David Pifer, raffle winner Victor Grimm, Ray Corbett.

After the brief ceremony, the winning ticket for the Legion’s fundraising raffle was drawn. Mantua Township Trustee Victor Grimm’s ticket was drawn, making him the winner of a rifle. For more information about American Legion Post 193’s activities, contact Post 193 Ladies Auxiliary Secretary, Sharon Steiner at (330) 808-0774.  If you have any flags that are no longer serviceable, take them to your local American Legion post for inclusion in their next disposal ceremony.

 

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The Village Piecemaker’s Quilt Club has created this beautiful queen size quilt (95” x 112”)  called “Village Square”.   This quilt, which is being raffled,  will be on display at the Weekly Villager office (8088 Main Street, Garrettsville) during the Garrettsville Summerfest.  Tickets for the quilt are 6 for $5 or $1 each and will be available at the Villager, the Summerfest information booth or by calling 330 527-5443 or 330 671-3720.

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Newton Falls – Members of the Newton Falls American Legion Post celebrate the Army’s 239th birthday during their monthly meeting.  Former Army personnel pose with a cake celebrating the birthday.  From left to right: Robert Shaulis, Duncan Shetterly, Pete Price, John Bishop, Arden Baillee, Robert James, Tom Buncic,  Walt Tully, Lennie Williams, Ron Widowfield and Richard Sibera

Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary entertained their soon-to-depart Rotary Student Exchange ambassador, Rachel Schwan at the regular  noon meeting  at Cal’s II on June 9, 2014 for questions about her preparations for the big adventure.  This included getting through the visa process and a convention of exchange students coming up at Otterbein, the daunting challenge of learning the Thai language, contact with her host family via Facebook—with pictures—the current political climate in Thailand( It’s quieter in the north where she’s going), the pervasiveness of Buddhism in the culture and the unknown factors that make it all so exciting.

The other guest at the meeting, Mr. Rich Brown, was introduced as “the Closer” by Delores McCumbers, who is acquainted with him through his working with McCumbers-Brady Realty as an agent of a title company.  His brief description of the duties of title companies was interesting and enlightening.  He’ll be invited back, no doubt.

Also on the docket : possibility of supporting a program encouraging first and second graders in mastering basic math skills—more consideration and discussion will be coming; reservations are due by  July 21 for attendance at the Indians’ game on August 1 for Rotary Night—“Dollar Dogs” and more; reading of the letter sent to the District regarding a possible grant enableing the local club’s participation in a rebuilding project; the village sign beautification crew will be mobilized on Thursday at 10:00 a.m.

More next week; Garfield athletic director, Jim Pfleger, will be on hand to outline the plans and progress of the upgrades coming to the Garfield athletic facilities.

Mantua – The Rotary Club of Mantua would like to congratulate Crestwood high school junior Morgan Strenk.  Morgan is the winner of the prestigious Rotary Youth Leadership Award scholarship. This award will enable Morgan to participate at a camp held at Baldwin Wallace University from June 8-14, 2014.

Approximately 50 juniors from the northeast, Ohio area will participate at this camp.  The award is only given to juniors so they may use the leadership skills learned at camp for their senior year of high school.  The general unanimous comment from the students that have completed the camp is: “it was the best thing I have ever done in my life”.  We look forward the future accomplishments from this outstanding student.

Newton Twp. – The Newton Township Cemetery Association calendar for 2015 will feature photos of the tornado damage that destroyed property 30 years ago in Newton Falls. The calendar price is $10.00 and may be purchased in mid-June from Association members or by calling 330.872.0236 or 330.872.5452.2015. Calendars can be obtained at that time from Art Effects, Newton Falls Printing, Nussles Florist and Roods Wallpaper and Paint. They will also be available at the 2014 Newton Falls Schoolmates Reunion on June 14th .

A walk in the cemetery located at the Pricetown United Methodist Church is in the planning stages and will be held in September or October. The Association will participate in the Pricetown Church Festival on July 19. The 2015 calendars will be sold at the festival and there are still a few 2014 calendars available featuring the north side of Broad Street.

The Association will make a decision on its 2014 project at its next business meeting. The monies profited from the April 6th dinner will be used to partially fund the project. One of the cemetery improvements being considered is the repair of the wrought iron fence at Newton Falls East Cemetery on North Canal Street.

The next meeting for the Cemetery Association will be June 19, 2014, 6:00 P.M. at the Township Administration Building on Newton Falls-Bailey Road. All residents of Newton Falls and Newton Township are invited to attend the meetings which are held the third Thursday of each month.

 

For the ninth year in its more than 30 years of history the Garrettsville Eagles Club No 2705 has award four $750.00 scholarships to family members of members.

Bradley Kowalski is a  2014 graduate of Windham High School as valedictorian and is accepted both by Bowling Green and Kent State universities. After he makes his choice will major in Pre-Med aiming for Sports Related Physical Therapy.

Brad was involved in sports, varsity letterman. second team honors in baseball. He had part-time jobs and contributed community services.

Kaylie Johnson, is a 2014 graduate of Champion High School and will attend Mt. Union majoring in Early Childhood and Special Education. Her goal is to be K-3 or a special ed teacher in a public or private school.

Kaylie was member of the Honors Society, Student of the month in February, 2014, member of the Key Club, CTC Varsity Bowling Team and Color Guard. She is involved in church youth group and church nursery.

Rebecca Kern is a 2014 James A Garfield High School graduate and has been accepted by Bowling Green University this fall. She plans to be an Intervention Specialist with a degree in Special Education.

She was president of the National  Honor Society,member of the Marching Band, Pep Band, Concert Band, involved in Yuletide Revels, Christmas Celebration and counselor at Camp Fitch. In her spare time she is employed at Miller’s Family Restaurant.

Justin Vaughan is a 2014 graduate of Crestwood High School and will attend Slippery Rock University in PA. He is aiming for a degree in Sports Management. He will minor in Journalism with hope of being a sports writer.

He was captain of the Tennis Club for 3 years, member of the Community Service Club, Yearbook, Awarded Coaches, Captain and Participation recognition.Went on two missions to help those effected by hurricanes, cleared streets, and put on events such as Halloween Carnival and Father-Daughter dance.

The scholarships awarded are in addition to the club’s support of several community services which we hope to continue in future years with the support of our members and the community.

Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary will be entertaining their Rotary Youth Exchange student, Rachel Schwan, next week to hear more about last-minute preparations for her departure for Thailand to spend a year as an informal ambassador of our community under the auspices of Rotary International.  What an adventure!

Evelyn West will be the local delegate to RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Assembly) this summer at Baldwin-Wallace.  Laura Wilburn was the recipient of the Rotary scholarship awarded to a senior Interact member; it was presented at the Senior Awards Night on May 28.

The Wadsworth Rotary has issued an invitation to their “Gear Grinder” bike tour coming up on July 19.  Information is available.

The G-H club will be doing some beautification work at the signs marking entrance to the village as part of a Rotary contribution to ongoing rebuilding efforts.  Hostas and daylilies figure in the plans, as well as several work sessions.  Contributions from other regional Rotary clubs have totaled over $3500 and await a formal project launch.

Programs of ten to fifteen minutes in length are being sought, with members taking one meeting per month to outline their professions to acquaint the entire group with the make -up of the membership.

Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary meets Mondays at noon in Cal’s II.  Come check them out.

 

MHSocietyMantua – Wayne Enders is coming to Mantua Center’s Christian Church on June 16th at 7:00 p.m. for a presentation put on by the Mantua Historical Society. Wayne will enlighten members, guests and general public with an account of Rev. E. E. Lamb, who was the minister of the Rootstown Congregational Church during the American Civil War. Rev. Lamb crafted a eulogy that spoke to the profound sorrow the nation was experiencing after Abraham Lincoln’s death. The church is located at the Mantua Center’s green, off  State Route 82 and Mantua Center Road. Light refreshments will be served.

At the last meeting of the Mantua Historical Society, the members visited the Shalersville Historical Society museum and outbuildings, which are very nice and worth visiting. In the picture, Lois Summerlin, member of the Mantua Historical Society, and Ron Kotkowski, president of the Shalersville Historical Society are standing in front of the original desk of the Shalersville Town Hall that was purchased by Judge Lovell Gates from the township and donated to the museum by Ralph Gates.

MHS welcomes anyone desiring to join the organization; dues are $8 for a single and $12 for a family; we will meet every third Monday of the month until October.

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Newton Falls – On Saturday, May 17th  American Legion Post 236 with the assistance of Boy Scout Unit 67 placed flags honoring the veterans at the Newton Falls Westside Cemetery.  About 25 people showed up and worked through the chilly air, rain and some even toughed out the hail to get the job done.

 

Garrettsville – The May 19, 2014 meeting of the James A. Garfield Historical Society was focused on three main items :

***The Mott building will be open on May 24 during the Main Street CAR SHOW and on June 7 for the regular, first-Saturday-of-the-month Open House from 10:00 to 2:00.

***Many of the surviving documents—maps, abstracts of land titles and transfers, etc.—which had been in the Mishler office, which survived the Buckeye Block Fire, will be coming to the society.  There are records dating back to the establishment of the Connecticut Western Reserve, a treasure trove for research and historical interest.

***Christmas Walk is coming!  The signs need repainting.  The advertising should  begin to be organized, with special emphasis on local and senior groups.  Questions arose as to whether it would be worthwhile to attempt to make transportation arrangements, when these were not fully utilized in 2012.  Valorie McCullough asked if there was a count from 2012 regarding the number of meals and refreshments served.  Inquiries will be made.  The Nelson United Methodist Church will be on the Walk this year in recognition of the celebration of their bicentennial.  All in attendance expressed    appreciation and thanks for the excellent refreshments  donated by the church following the recent historical marker dedication.  They were a great addition to the event.

The winner of the society’s scholarship will be announced at the James A. Garfield High School Senior Awards program on May 28.

 

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.

 

Nelson Twp. – A study conducted by the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention found that in the five-year period ending in 2010, almost 3,800 people in the U.S. died from unintentional shootings. Over 1,300 of those victims were under 25 years of age. A federal study of unintentional shootings found that 8% of such shooting deaths resulted from shots fired by children under the age of six. Close to home, near Kent, OH in March, an 11-year-old was accidentally shot and killed by his 15-year-old cousin.

“The primary concern when handling firearms is safety,” explained National Rifle Association (NRA) instructor Tammy Peters. Peters, a certified NRA instructor from Garrettsville, recently taught a Youth Shotgun Clinic at the Streetsboro Sportsmen Association’s facilities in Nelson Township. The class was offered at no cost to area children ages 10 – 18, accompanied by a responsible adult.

According to Club member Russ Vandercook, “People are scared of guns because they don’t understand how to safely use  them.” Peters concurred, remarking, “The major cause of gun accidents are the lack of knowledge of how a firearm operates, and carelessness.” Safety courses like those offered by the club help to teach gun enthusiasts of all ages the basics required to handle and operate firearms in a safe manner.

Fifteen youth from the area learned the basics at the Club’s recent Youth Shotgun Clinic. Before ever touching a firearm, the group learned gun-safety basics. Peters mentioned the incident in Portage County, stressing the dire circumstances that can result when firearm safety precautions aren’t utilized. She told her students how to respond in a similar situation, if they ever find themselves around an unsecured gun while visiting a friend or neighbor. “Don’t touch it! Make sure that you and your friends leave the room immediately, and go tell an adult.”

During the course of the morning, students were familiarized with the basic parts of a gun, and how they function. Key concepts were also covered by Peters, who directed her class to, “Always keep the gun pointed in a safe direction where it won’t damage people or property.” She continued, “Always keep your finger off the trigger until you’re ready to fire, and always keep your gun unloaded until you’re ready to use it.” A question and answer session was held after her informative lecture, and each participant received a copy of the NRA’s “Basics of Shotgun Safety,” handbook.

Afterward, the students were invited to practice the techniques they learned, under the watchful eye of their parents or guardians and a handful of the Club’s 150 members. Although the group was predominantly male, several females were in attendance. One young woman, Emily, was there with her father, Earl. Proud of Emily’s skill and expertise, her dad shared that he and Emily have been there and elsewhere to learn and practice. “It’s important for young people to learn how to handle a guns safely,” he stated. “It’s also a great way for kids to learn discipline,” he concluded.

The Streetsboro Sportsmen Shooting Club is a private facility that features a trap range and ranges of 25, 50,100 and 200 yard for bench rest, prone, silhouette and pistol matches. For more information on the club, visit streetsborosportsman.org.

The Streetsboro Sportsmen Association will be holding another free clinic at their Nelson Township facility. This upcoming clinic, held on May 31st, is entitled, ‘Women’s Introduction to Firearms’. This event will run from 9 am until 1 pm, and is offered at no charge, but requires advance reservations. For more information, or to register, contact Russ Vandercook at (330) 274-3566.

 

Ravenna - The annual Portage County 4-H member recognition and achievement program was held recently at Maplewood Career Center.  4-H members and clubs were recognized for outstanding performances in 2013.

Lto R   Doug Rohal- Leadership Washington Focus trip, Morgan Bellar- Sea Camp, Jacqueline Moss- Citizenship Washington Focus trip, and Jacob Rohal- Forestry Camp Photo: Roberta R. Gallagher

Lto R Doug Rohal- Leadership Washington Focus trip, Morgan Bellar- Sea Camp, Jacqueline Moss- Citizenship Washington Focus trip, and Jacob Rohal- Forestry Camp
Photo: Roberta R. Gallagher

Among the awards presented were Blue Ribbon Awards for club secretaries and treasurers who submitted accurate and complete record books for their clubs.

4-H Week Window Decorating/ 4-H Awareness contest winners included the Edinburg Seambusters, Creatures N’ Features, The Outlaws, Everything Under the Sun, Portage County Shepherds, Kitchen Crew, The Alpha Pack, Field Nimble Thimbles and Country Cooks, and the Garrettsville Town Trotters.

The Portage County 4-H Life Skills Committee awarded $500 scholarships to members who have taken on  life skills projects. Recipients included Rachel Maefs, Garrett Rohal, Tyler Flynn, and Rachel Neal.

Clubs that met the criteria of Clubs of Distinction/Honor Clubs included the 10thCavalry, Critter Getters, Edinburg Seambusters, Everything Under the Sun, Garrettsville Town Trotters, Goats-R-Us, Kitchen Crew, Kritters & Kids, Market Masters, Nosey Nibblers, Paws-N-Claws, Portage County Shepherds, Portage County Unleashed, Portage Projects, Portage Steakmakers, Rootstown Small Ones, St. Joseph Green Rangers, The Alpha Pack, and The Outlaws.

The dog, goat, horse, and small animal committees recognized members in the areas of leadership, citizenship, most improved, and a number of other species specific awards.

County Gold Medal Award winners were Cory Mathia for horses, Megan MacIntyre for dogs, Samantha Eckhart for swine, Jamie Willis for sheep, Kyle Kissamore for beef, Seth Allen for poultry, Ryan Kissamore for goats, Emma Tuel for clothing and textiles, and Pachel Parks for achievement.

4-H Camps and Trip Award winners included Jacqueline Moss for Citizenship Washington Focus Trip, Caroline Blay and Douglas Rohal for Leadership Washington Focus Trip, Morgan Bellar for Sea Camp, Emily Simmons for Carving New Ideas Workshop, Emily Starkey for Ohio 4-H Space Adventure Camp, Jacob Rohal for Forestry Camp, and Nathan Kline for Ohio 4-H Leadership Camp.  These camps and trips are sponsored by the Portage County Randolph Fair Board.

 

Middlefield - The Geauga County Retired Teachers Association (GCRTA) will hold their next luncheon meeting on Tuesday June 3rd at Mary Yoder’s Restaurant, 14743 North Street in Middlefield, Ohio. Attendees should arrive at 11:15 a.m. and the business meeting will begin at 11:30. The luncheon will follow at noon with a menu of roast pork, potatoes, green beans, cole-slaw dinner rolls, pie and beverages. The cost of the meal is $18.00 which includes a$1.00 donation for the Grant-in Aid Fund. Reservations must be received by May 30th, and the checks should be written to GCRTA. Please send your reservation and check to: Judy Miller, 17130 Kinsman Road Middlefield, Ohio 44062 (phone: 440487-4324). Linda Pentilla will present a program on energy conservation. Remember to bring a canned food item or a paper product for the Geauga County Hunger Task Force.

Please consider bringing a newly retired teacher or other retired public school personnel. The association welcomes any person who was employed by a school district anywhere in the United States. If you need more information about membership into GCTRA, contact Jean Paine at 440-286-4992.

For those attendees needing a ride, call Geauga Transit at 440-285-2222 or 440-564-7131 Ex.16 a week in advance to make your reservation.

The new, Cal’s II meeting place for the Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary Club is proving popular and conducive to getting things accomplished.  Those things at the May 19, 2014 meeting  include :

Planning for the presentation of a wreath at the cemetery on Memorial Day

Invitation to celebration of Dr. Lynn Newman’s steadfast  60-year participation in Rotary programs with the Andover club

Invitation to the Cleveland Indians Rotary Night on  August 1 boosting the Rotary project, “End Polio Now” and featuring many activities as well as fireworks

Possible participation in the Rotary initiative Dictionary Project, wherein third graders at any given school are presented with a paperback dictionary of their very own…suggested by the Portage Mental Health & Recovery Board as a worthwhile project

The Portage Cluster—Garrettsville-Hiram, Mantua-Shalersville, Aurora, Kent, Ravenna—is considering a joint project, possibly involving Habitat for Humanity

Might G-H Rotary be spiffing up the signs at the entrances to the village?

Invitation to participate in the Boy Scouts’ beginning clean-up project on the Headwaters Trail on Thursday, with McDonald’s to follow

Jim Irwin presented a brief program—with pictures and readings—on the history, both commercial and cultural, of the Buckeye Block.  The street level businesses varied over time and the upstairs level housed a private, subscription library and the Buckeye Hall, where meetings, lectures, dramatic and musical productions had taken place.  There were quotes from an 1868 diary of Eugene Case, one of the laborers on the construction of the building.  Interesting.

Dues are due.

There will be no meeting on Memorial Day

 

Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary, at their meeting on May 12, 2014, entertained Ms Evelyn West as an applicant for attendance at this summer’s RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Award)activity to be held in June at Baldwin-Wallace College in Berea.  She is a participant in Interact, does volunteer work at the James A. Garfield Elementary School and at Hattie Larlham.  She also participates in musical and theatre activities and the St. Ambrose Youth group.  She is considering a career in musical therapy and the G-H Rotary group will be stepping up to assist this very capable young lady in sharpening her leadership skills in furtherance of her goals.

Jim Irwin described his experience  visiting the Rotary Club of Milan and brought back some new ideas for projects and programs.

Kit Semplak gave a brief outline of the program to take place on May 14 at 6:00, dedicating the official Ohio State Historical marker commemorating the Last Great Train Robbery in the United States, which took place in Garrettsville in 1935 at the now-gone Erie Railroad station.  The Ohio Historical Society furnished a grant and local funds were raised, primarily through the James A. Garfield Historical Society and the local schools.  Hiram College graduate Julie Thompson, has researched and organized the event, incorporated local and state officials, a reenactment of the event, the origin of the local “G-Man” nickname/logo for the school system teams and even the appointment of Hiram College’s first woman president.  A panoply of historic events!  The meet-n-greet begins at 5:30, featuring tasty treats from the Nelson Methodist Church, with the program to begin at 6:00.

G-H Rotarians will be sponsoring a $500 scholarship for an Interact student at this year’s Award ceremonies on May 28.

Tom Collins invited all to join Boy Scout troop 4262 in performing a clean-up along the Headwaters Trail on May 19 at 6:00.  Rotary will be buying gloves.  Y’all come, now.

Vice President Delores McCumbers, presiding at the meeting, read  a letter to the grant-making body of the District 6630 in preparation for the possibility of applying for  project funding to rebuild Garrettsville’s downtown with a Rotary recognition.

 

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Ravenna – TOPS –Take Off Pounds Sensibly, Ravenna Chapter #1941, celebrated their annual awards and recognition recently. The theme of the program was “Follow the path to your dreams”.

Pictured above (left to right)  Chapter Winners- Stephen Rohal, Patti Calvarese, Carolyn Helmling, Debbie Horning, and MaryLou Priest

Pictured above (left to right)  Chapter Winners- Stephen Rohal, Patti Calvarese, Carolyn Helmling, Debbie Horning, and MaryLou Priest. Photo: Roberta Gallagher

Chapter winners included Debbie Horning-1st place division 3, MaryLou Priest- 2nd place division 3, Carolyn Helmling- 1st place division 4, Patti Calvarese- 1st place female division 9, and Stephen Rohal- 1st place male division 9.  The five winners lost a combined total of 268 pounds in 2013.

In addition, the chapter took part in the TOPS Annual State Recognition Days held in Cincinnati recently. The theme was “Chase your dreams with TOPS” celebrating all the state winners for 2013.

Members honored at State Recognition Days included Cherryl Duffield for maintaining her goal weight as a KOPS (Keep Off Pounds Sensibly) for 4 years, Patti Calvarese for State 2nd place female division 9, and Stephen Rohal 1st place male division 9 for the state of Ohio.  Stephen will go on to represent Ohio at the TOPS International Recognition Days being held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, home of TOPS International, in July.

Ravenna Chapter #1941 was honored as a “TOPS Top 10 Chapter” in the state for weight loss with an average loss of 8.6 pounds per member for the year.

Anyone interested in Taking Off Pounds Sensibly is invited to attend Thursday mornings at the Maplewood Christian Church 7300 SR 88 Ravenna. Weigh-in is between 9 and 9:45 with the weight loss program beginning from 10am until 11am.

 

MantuaHistorical Mantua – Carol Denzinger, pictured, was the guest speaker at the April meeting of the Mantua Historical Society; she gave an excellent presentation of Mantua’s bygone days. She is displaying Stamm Contracting calendars, where the main character is the Gay Old Philosopher. If you were looking for a good time, on a Friday night and could go back in time, you would find it in downtown Mantua in the 1950′s. Farmers finishing up with their field work and  workers coming home would head to town, because businesses, like Hammel’s and Haylett’s grocery stores, Weber Hardware store, the lumber yard, the bank, etc., stayed open late (9:00 p.m.). There would have been music in  the streets, because the high school band would march to town and set up to  play music. THE GOOD OLD DAYS!

The next meeting of the Historical Society, on May 19th, will be a road trip to the Shalersville Historical Society’s museum on S. R. #44; we will meet at 7:00 p.m. for our meeting and to tour their museum, our host will be Ron  Kotkowski. Light refreshments will be served. The group welcomes new members; dues are $8 per person or $12 per family; meetings are every third Monday of the months from March to October at the Mantua Township Hall’s  lower level, located at S. R. 82 and Mantua Center Road.

The Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary Club met at Cal’s II on Monday, May 5, 2014, inducting two new members, Trish Danku and Ted Lysiak.  The ceremony included a short exposition of the significance and activities of Rotary, both local and worldwide.  Rotarians and their works are admired and emulated in the furtherance of their motto, “Service Above Self.”  There was also a brief discussion of the Rotary Foundation and how it awards matching grants at the local, national and international levels.

Information on the incoming Rotary Youth Exchange student was made available for the first time.  The new visitor is coming from Hungary and his name is Lenart Zsadany.  Step right up and say hello.  He currently attends Verebely Laszlo Szakkozepiskola es Gimnazium—probably doesn’t have any T-shirts with that on– and enjoys informatics; he would like to be a computer programmer and plays soccer.  He will be staying with the Brown family, the Schwan family and the Collins family.  Make him welcome. He likes to be called “Zad”.  We can do that.

Next meeting will entertain students in the junior class hoping to attend the summer RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Assembly) at Baldwin-Wallace College.  It’s a selection interview.  Good Luck to students and selectors; it’s not easy making these decisions.

Various thoughts and ideas about fund-raising  to make possible a matching grant from the Rotary Fund for the Garrettsville reconstruction efforts.  Specific projects are required for disbursement of funds and a focus on Rotary contributions to the community is highly favored.  More thoughts later.

Newton-Falls-OlympicsNewton Falls -   Saturday, May 3 turned out just fine for our 6- to 12-year-olds in Newton Falls.  The sun even made a few appearances.  The Kiwanis Club of Newton Falls, with the help of Coach Bugos and the track team, hosted a fun athletic competition which included track and field events.

From year to year, no one knows what to expect from Mr. Kellner’s creative obstacle course, and this year’s course was a challenge.  The children also enjoyed the softball throw, which measures accuracy as well as distance.  Some students had their first try at the long jump, and luckily, had more than one try.  Track events included 25-meter, 50-meter, 100-meter, and 200-meter races, where children were divided by male/female and by age group.

Thank you’s go out to all who helped in this event.  Kiwanis would like to thank the school and school board for permission to use the facility, the secretaries who handled registration forms, Zack Hogue at the microphone for events and awards, Positive Images for shirt printing, Mr. Bugos and track team, and the Kiwanis volunteers.  We hope to see the children wearing their olympic t-shirts around town.

WaterSentinelProgramMantua – The Ohio Sierra Club Clean Water Campaign invites participants to learn about the Cuyahoga River and its wonderful aquatic critters in this May hike and macroinvertebrate hunt.

The event will run from 2:00pm until 5:00pm on Saturday, May 10th and participants will meet at Buchert Memorial Park pavilion. The event will start with a hike on a paved trail and will conclude with a search for macroinvertebrate species in the Cuyahoga River.  Participants should bring waders or boots if they wish to enter the water. Otherwise, comfortable hiking attire is appropriate.

Sierra Club will be joined by Ohio Department of Natural River’s (ODNR’s) Scenic River Program and will identify creatures with the help of their staff and aquatic monitoring equipment.

Aquatic macroinvertebrates are organisms that have no backbone and can be seen with the naked eye. They are seen living on the streambed, along stream banks, and on or underneath rocks and materials in Ohio’s waters.

“A diverse and high amount of macroinvertebrates indicate clean water so we’re hoping we see a lot of critters at this event!” said Clean Water Fellow Ryan Ainger.

To register for this event, email Ryan Ainger at ryanainger@gmail.com

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.

 

NFScoutsNewton Falls – Boy Scout Troop 112 of Newton Falls was rechartered by Amvets Post 112 in 2010. Since then every spring the boys have taken on the task of cleaning up the walking path in Newton Falls. This year, with a growing number of boys coming into the troop, we were able to have 2 groups of boys go in 2 different directions. The first group of boys cleaned up the path going towards the community center and baseball fields. They also took on the task of cleaning up the community pond. The second group went from the covered bridge out to main street and back up North Center St. Keeping America Beautiful is sponsored by the Geauga Trumbull Solid Waste Management District which donated garbage bags, gloves and wild flower seed packets.

Pictured from L-R Back: Billy Simmons, Alex Shearer, Jason Jones, Assistant Patrol Leader Harrison Bates, Nathaniel Saylor, Larry Cline (behind Nathaniel), Anthony Bailey, Patrol Leader Vincent Bailey, BJ Thomas. Front L-R Johnny Staton & Chad Bates. (not pictured: Jr. Assistant Scout Master Matthew Gushura, Senior Patrol Leader Bucyrus Palo, Chaplains Aide Alan Cohn.)

For more information on Boy Scout Troop 112, Please contact Trish Gushura at 330-507-3886 (text or call), troop112@yahoo.com or visit Boy Scout Troop 112 on Facebook.

 

kiwanis-girl-scouts-newton-fallsThe Kiwanis Club of Newton Falls recently welcomed Girl Scout Troop 239 and their leader, Pat Leach, to a regular meeting.  The club wanted to recognize the work that the girls have done.  They made dresses, which will be taken by a missionary, for little girls in Haiti.  The Scouts washed, ironed, measured, followed a pattern, sewed, and trimmed many dresses.  Kiwanis appreciates their spirit of helping others.

Garrettsville - The James A. Garfield Historical Society met on April 21, 2014 in the historic Mott Building for a full slate of official business and some interesting highlights.

Ed Perdian made a cameo appearance to propose  an activity  that the group might consider offering during SummerFest this year: a tour of historic homes in the village via horse-drawn Amish surreys.  This  elicited considerable interest and discussion of insurance, scripted information and permission of organizers.  More to come.

Pam Montgomery described the #GarrettsvilleStrong project which she has undertaken, seeking memories of the destroyed Buckeye Block from everyone in the community.  Broad outline of the project include the history of the structure, memories specific to the location, the fire event itself, recovery.  Advertising opportunities will be available to help defray the costs.  Submissions may be sent to Nelson United Methodist Church, Box 210, Garrettsville, OH 44231.

Changes to the organization’s by-laws were voted on and approved.

The Christmas Walk is coming.  Maureen See will be organizing and overseeing the craft show.  The location is still uncertain but the Village Hall is the hoped-for  venue.  Sites for the Walk itself were announced : The Countryman home in Rolling Meadows, the Kontur home on the State Route 303, the Renner home on South Park  Blvd., the Kissel home on St. Rte 82.  Nelson United Methodist Church will be the featured house of worship this year, in honor of the celebration of their bicentennial (Actual celebration will take place in July; they’ll probably be baking from then until November).

The next big event this spring will be the dedication of the new historical marker(sounds like an oxymoron, doesn’t it?) to be held on Wednesday, May 14 in the Iva Walker Auditorium at 6:00 p.m.  All manner of local and regional dignitaries will be on hand, from the newly-chosen president of Hiram College Lori Varlotta, to congressman David Joyce, to retiring Hiram College president, Thomas Chema ,to local-girl-made-good State Representative Kathleen Clyde, to James A. Garfield Local School District superintendent Ted Lysiak AND the Garfield Marching Pride and re-enactors of the Last great Train Robbery in the United States, which the marker commemorates.  The Nelson UMC will be providing refreshments for the gathering. It will be an evening.  The public is invited.

Next open house at the Mott Building will be on May 3 from 10:00 to 2:00.

A DVD, maybe two of them, is in the works as a fundraiser for the society and #GarrettsvilleStrong, featuring  video by Rich Teresi and with help from Carlson Funeral Homes and Crematory Services.

Gene Semplak and Joe Fry were credited and thanked for refurbishing the historical society’s sign, which was approaching antique appearance itself.

There have been fourteen applications for the James A. Garfield Historical Society scholarship award ($500).  Selection will be made in time for the Awards Day at the high school.

Donations were accepted :  a framed letter from Orson E. Ott to the reunion class of 1957, books and papers belonging to the late Thelma Paul from Roetta Moore, newspaper clipping from Stephanie Byrne, historical pictures.

The meeting closed with a reading /history lesson by Edith Sampson recounting impressions of a tour of the Buckeye Block in 1999.  Where’s the water tank now?

 

Participants of Rotary's Roadside Cleanup. Photo courtesy of Tom Collins

Participants of Rotary’s Roadside Cleanup. Photo courtesy of Tom Collins

Garrettsville - Garrettsville-Hiram  Rotarians met at their new venue at Cal’s II at noon on Monday, April 28, 2014; it was a good meeting, model for many more.

Ted Lysiak reported that the construction of the new intermediate school is—so far—on track to be completed as scheduled, on August 20.  Consultations  with the YMCA are ongoing, regarding which spaces at the Park Ave. building will be used by them and which will be the domain of the PCESC.  Teachers from that building will be packing up their accumulated materials to be moved to the new digs by the high school football team, after storage in some donated semi trailers over the summer.  Whew!  Demo models of the tech component of the grant—Google Chrome book and HP laptop—circulated  and the 4C’s aspect of their acquisition—creativity,  collaboration, communication and critical thinking—were brought out.  He also invited all to the Wednesday, April 30 presentation by the Portage County Drug Task Force at the Iva Walker Auditorium.

Carol Donley reported on the latest developments in the ongoing adventure of the group’s sponsored international exchange student, Rachel Schwan, who will be heading out to Thailand in August.  Carol was able to participate in the district investiture program   when the exchange students got their Rotary blazers (and pins)to identify themselves when they speak to international Rotary groups.   Rachel will also be receiving local club banners and pins to use when making presentations.  So far, no word on an exchange student coming to the Garrettsville-Hiram community.  Also mentioned was the generous impulse of district Rotarians making #GarrettsvilleStrong donations at the conference.

Tom Collins reported on the recent roadside clean-up between Garrettsville and Hiram with the assistance of the Garfield Interact Club and the Boy Scouts AND Jim Irwin and John Crawford.  Interesting things turned up in the highway waste collection.  Lunch, furnished by McDonald’s, was enjoyed by all.  Also from Tom, mention of his visit to the Mantua-Shalersville club meeting to hear a presentation by Portage Park District head, Chris Craycroft, explaining and urging support for the county parks levy which will be up for passage on May 6.  The system could be an economic engine for the county and for the Garrettsville/Mantua area, located at either end of the Headwaters Trail.  Possible co-operation between the clubs to promote the trail is a thought for the future.

Rotarians are everywhere and many of them were in evidence at the “Garrettsville Day” in Blazin’ Bill’s rib celebration recently.  As a business owner who in the past suffered  a fire of total destruction and a Rotarian, the owner/operator graciously turned over a percentage of that evening’s profits to the recovery efforts.  Plenty of locals and plenty of Rotarians from far afield attended to support the cause.  Plans for the Rotary contribution to the rebuilding effort will be taking shape soon.

The club voted to make a contribution to the Garfield after-prom committee.

Rotary Youth Leadership Assembly will be coming up this summer.  Candidates are being sought.

Newton Falls – The April meeting of the Newton Falls Area Commerce Association began with a discussion on any communications received since the last meeting. NFACA President and Newton Falls Mayor Lyle Waddell mentioned that Patrick Hartory, an Ohio author, sent an email querying the association’s interest in having him come speak about customer relations. The membership expressed that this may be a viable option and further conversation with Mr. Hartory is expected to take place. Following that part of the agenda, the previous minutes and the financial report were approved, with discussion about how best to store the archived minutes. They are available online on the website, however, a hard copy has also usually been kept for quick reference.

Guests from the Kiwanis Labor Day Race Committee were given the floor to discuss the upcoming race were held on September 1st. The 4-mile run (4 to celebrate the 44444 zip code) is celebrating its 25th year this fall. New Kiwanis member Cassie Stroup has taken the lead in this year’s race organization and she mentioned that they hope to have even more participation this year. This past year there were 200 runners and 40 walkers so the committee is looking forward to getting the word out early with the fact that there are a few significant changes to how the race will be presented, most notably a new route around town. The committee is also hoping to create a scholarship fund this year so that 80% of the proceeds will still go to the Senior Citizens Van but then 20% will go to a scholarship for local students (capped at $1,500). There will be business sponsorship opportunities for this event, such has contributing advertising stuffers for the goody bags, so anyone interested can talk to a committee member, check out the facebook page or otherwise do an online search for information about the event.

The featured NFACA member for April was “Santa” Rick Kerlin of Our Towne Construction who mentioned that the home improvement business was started last year and they do work such as concrete work, construction work, etc. He also said that they focus on giving back to this community as they live and work in this community. Locals will recognize Kerlin and his crew as well-known characters around Christmas time. In addition to participating in the NFACA, Our Towne Construction is also a member of the Garrettsville Chamber of Commerce and the Regional Chamber. Next month will be feature Tanya Allman with Huntington Bank.

By way of old business, the streetlamp banners are ready to go to the printers – they should be hanging up around town soon. Small Business Saturday is still in discussion and several ideas were offered to tie the event in with another event such as the annual car show, yard sale, or a specially-planned wine tasting.

In new business, advertising methods and member-to-member discounts were discussed as well as the recent presentation made by the Kiwanis. A motion was approved to let the finance committee discuss the Kiwanis’ request for monetary sponsorship and give a recommendation to the membership on how to proceed.

During the city manager’s report, Mr. Haney mentioned that Tire Collection Days are May 1st and 2nd from 8am-2pm at the street department off of Church Street. This is in conjunction with City-Wide Clean-up Day on May 2nd during which the high schoolers will be helping to clean up Veterans’ Park. In other news, work on the water tower will begin soon so residents may notice workers way up high taking care of some maintenance issues. Street paving planned for this year includes Ravenna Road, Water Street, and Arlington areas. The turn lane arrows in downtown will be restored as soon as weather permits. Also to be noted is an Income Tax issue on the forthcoming ballot. It will involve a .5% income tax up for vote (imposed on earned income only) that is expected to raise $250,000 to stabilize the city budget. Since 2005 the city has lost $430,000 and the new money would be used for the street department, police department and Parks & Rec.

Before the meeting adjourned, time was given for open discussion and it was noted that several new businesses are coming to town. The Pit-Stop Tire building by the Dairy Queen, a Mexican restaurant moving in to the old Faces Café, another photography studio moving into the freestanding building across from Cole Valley (that at one time was a dance studio, then a photography studio, and most recently an art studio) are just a few of the new storefronts popping up.

The next NFACA meeting will be noon on Tuesday, May 13 at Roby Lee’s.

 

Garrettsville - The Twentieth Century Club of Garrettsville met on April 24, 2014, at Cal’s II in the Sky Plaza for the annual Spring Party.  This will close the club year until the Summer Outing in July or August.

Members and guests were graciously  welcomed by outgoing president, Carol Torda; member Jane Bell offered grace before the meal.

The program for the evening was author Nancy Pennick, whose book series, Waiting for Dusk, includes Waiting for Dusk, Call of the Canyon and Stealing Time.  She described her retired teacher situation and  the origin of her foray into writing as a sort of past/present interface that set her on a course that she could hardly have imagined at one time.   Her work has been self-published, working with a small publishing house (Melange Press) and catching some lucky breaks(The big companies—there are six of them—do much in the way of marketing and promotion but are super-hard to connect with).  She did some marketing on her own, giving away bookmarks, magnets and copies of her book to the local district library and lucky winners in the group.  It is available online at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.  Her advice : Follow your dreams…but always have a back-up plan.

Outgoing officers of the club—Carol Torda, Joyce Fashing, Karen Miller, Leah Schultz– then took up candles  for the installation of new officers, passing the light to Pat Amor, president; Jane Bell, vice president; Mary Furillo, secretary; Leah Schultz, treasurer.  Next, longevity recognition went to members Connie Crate and Gay McCoy.  Lastly, the program committee for the 2014-2015 year –Karen Miller, Bonnie Oliver, Carol Torda, Joyce Fashing—distributed  questionnaires on program suggestions and entertaining options for use in setting up next year’s activities and locations.  Pictures were taken, congratulations were offered.  Encouragement  in finding new members was offered.  Goodbyes were said.  New adventures are on the horizon.

 

Garrettsville - Eagle Scout candidate Ryan Pawlus has elected to build a peace garden  near the Peace Pole at the Garrettsville United Methodist Church (which sponsors his troop, 4262) and he is seeking support from individuals and groups to purchase the engraved bricks which will  be used to create the walkway leading to the garden.  Each of the bricks is available  for $50.  The project is slated to begin in April, 2014, and be completed by June, 2014.

Forms for the message to be printed on your brick are available from Ryan(9894 St. Rte 700, Mantua, OH  44255; jpawlus26@gmail.com) or at the Garrettsville United Methodist Church.  Checks should be made payable to : GUMC-Eagle Project.

A representation of the design plan is on display at the Garrettsville United Methodist Church, Park Av.,  Garrettsville OH.

newton-township-cemetary-assocNewton Township - The Newton Township Cemetery Association wishes to thank everyone for supporting the dinner we sponsored at the First Christian Church. The proceeds will be used for cemetery improvements and the Association will decide at its next meeting  which project it will be working on in the coming months.

A special thanks to Doreen and Rob Lutz, Louanne Dubos, Mary Lou O’Lear and everyone who helped make the dinner so successful.

The next meeting was to  be at the Newton Township Administration building, April 17, 2014 at 6:00 P.M. Please consider joining the Association and become involved in preserving our seven cemeteries.

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.

 

Pictured left to right: Diane Jendrisak, Co-President of the Portage County Gardeners, and Chair of the May Mart/Plant Sale& Nancy Polz, chair of Pre-Sale. They are getting ready for the upcoming events at the garden center at  5154 S. Prospect St. Ravenna

Pictured left to right: Diane Jendrisak, Co-President of the Portage County Gardeners, and Chair of the May Mart/Plant Sale& Nancy Polz, chair of Pre-Sale. They are getting ready for the upcoming events at the garden center at 5154 S. Prospect St. Ravenna

Ravenna – The Portage County Gardeners are hosting several upcoming events at the garden center in Rootstown.  The address for the center is 5154 S. Prospect St. Ravenna, Oh 44266

The first event is a Mother’s Day sale on Sat. May 10 from 9a.m.- 2p.m. There will be hanging baskets and patio pots for sale at various prices for the Mother’s Day Sale.  Then on Fri. eve May 16 – 4-7p.m and on Sat. May 17- 9-2 p.m. there will be a May Mart/ Plant Sale which includes home-dug perennials, area nursery  stock of annuals, baskets, patio pots, vegetables, herbs, raffles, lunch, a display of the winning posters from the Soil and Water Conservation Contest, a display by the Master Gardeners’, a PCGC membership display, and a bake sale. Thirdly, a Canning Workshop will be offered at the garden center on Sat. June 14, from 10- noon. The cost for this workshop is $25.00 .  Those interested in the Canning Workshop need to contact Helena Parry at 330-673-0577 for a reservations and pre-pay.

Finally, on June 17 the center will host Noelle Clark from Petitti’s Garden Center for a program called ” The Junkyard Up-Cycled Garden.”  Mark your calendars for the plant sales, the canning workshop and program.  You will be delighted.

 

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Source: Mantua Soapworks

Source: Mantua Soapworks

Mantua – The Mantua Village Garden Club will meet on Monday, May 5th.  The meeting will start at noon with a light lunch and business meeting. Afterwards, Lynn Grove of Mantua Soap Works, will share her knowledge of homemade soaps, and similar other products that she makes.  For those interested in attending, please call Lea Lazar (330-274-0614), or Diane Lottig (330-274-268).  The MVGC would also like to invite everyone to their annual plant sale on May17th, from 9:00 am – 1:00 pm, downtown, in the village, on Rt.44. The plant sale is our annual fund raiser, which we use to help buy flowers and plants to beautify Mantua.  For those who may be thinning out flower beds, in the next few weeks, we welcome any plant donations.  To donate plants please contact Denise Ballentine (330-297-6712).

Garrettsville-Hiram Rotarians have continued discussions on the Great Buckeye Block Fire in Garrettsville, the effects and the future actions that could be taken by both the local group and  Rotarians across the district who wish to make contributions.  Any funds raised will likely be channeled through the 6630 District to be utilized in  specific projects denoting the Rotary presence in the community.  One of the more interesting ideas was the possibility of a Flash/Cash mob to aid merchants and businesses on Main St.  More to come.

Rachel Schwan , Rotary International Youth Exchange student for 2014-2015, was in attendance.  She has had contact with at least one host family and is hoping to hear from others sooner rather than later.  She will be going to Thailand for the year.  Exciting!

The Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary Club will be sponsoring a girls’ softball team again this summer.   The local club has also sponsored bowlers at Sky Lanes this winter.

Dr. Neely may be on the program for the April 21 meeting at Cal’s II at noon.  The public is invited to join the Rotarians to hear about the new University Hospitals facility in Garrettsville, on South St.

 

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Mantua – The Mantua Historical Society held its’ last meeting on March 17th, where we featured a Show and Tell session after our meeting. Pictured is Sandy  Engelhart who brought her family heirloom quilt, which was quilted with ten stitches to one inch, to show us. Among other items, Arlene Finley shared  two brass banks (one lion and one donkey) with the group, and Dick Selander showed some six and twelve inch glass Solon Spring pop bottles. Bob and  Linda Havener via Dan and Kathy Havener presented the MHS museum with pen and ink prints, of the Hine House, Mantua’s railroad station, the Town Hall,  and Roger Hammel’s home, drawn by Frank Hubbard.

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Make your reservation today for the 15th annual Friends of WomenSafe Spring Luncheon, “Blossoms & Butterflies.” Wednesday, May 14, 2014, in the Banquet Room at St. Mary’s, 401 North Street in Chardon.  Hear guest speaker Natalie Saikaly Ronayne, Executive Director of the Cleveland Botanical Garden, tell us about the interesting things happening at the Botanical Garden.

The doors will open at 11:30 a.m. so you can buy tickets for the lavish Chinese Auction items offered every year.  Items include certificates for restaurants, overnights, jewelry made by area artists and specialty baskets, to name just a few of the items you can win.  Reserve House Catering will prepare the delicious lunch, and we will be serenaded with the beautiful music of harpist Virginia Dickson.  The price remains at only $30 per person.  Make your reservations online at www.eventbrite.com to pay by credit card or call #440-285-3741 for more information.

Up to 50% of homeless women and children are fleeing domestic violence.  By attending this fundraiser you will be part of the solution for families and individuals in crisis.  The Friends of WomenSafe exist solely to generate unrestricted funds to support the important work of WomenSafe.  We would love to see you at St. Mary’s as you treat yourself to a lovely afternoon and support this worthy cause!

 

In 2009, the small community of Garrettsville, Ohio, lost a precious, bright young fourth grader named Melana Matson to a horrible disease called Diffused Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG).  This disease is an incurable and inoperable brain stem tumor that is located in the pons section of the brain.  Prognosis is 9 to 12 months to live when the tumor is in the pons.  So basically, children with this disease are given a death sentence.  It is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in young people.

Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary Club will be moving its time and venue for meetings to Cal’s II at 12:00p.m. Yet to be decided is whether it will be on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday on a permanent basis.   Check it out and get involved with an active, community-oriented group seeking new members.  Everyone is invited to the first Monday noon meeting ( It’s been Monday evenings since about 1926…life goes on…things change.) on April 21st. Give Rotary a try.

G-H Rotary’s most recent meeting at the Hiram College Dining Hall was prefaced, as was just about every meeting in either Garrettsville or Hiram that week,  by discussion and reminiscences about the Buckeye Block and the rest of historic Garrettsville that was destroyed in the fire on March 22.  There was some interest in how to deal with possible donations from other clubs to aid the Garrettsville recovery efforts and the community food bank.  Matching grants may be available.  The district may be the way to go.  Is another reverse raffle the preferred fund-raising avenue? More discussion.

The group chose to endorse the upcoming Portage Park District levy on the ballot in May, with Tom Collins spearheading the effort and producing a letter-to-the-editor for local news media.  This is an issue of conservation, health and fitness, economic growth, community benefit; what’s not to like?

The subject of reviewing local by-laws on a regular timetable came up.  The president will be investigating this; Bob Jackson may be the fount of wisdom on this topic.  Additionally, the possibility of donating the club’s records and historical documents to the James A. Garfield Historical Society or to the Portage County District Library (branch office at Garrettsville)came up.  Digitizing these might make such an offer more appealing.

The semi-annual roadside clean-up is approaching.  Interact members and the local Boy Scout troop will be contacted to participate.  Their help is always appreciated.

 

Last week, during their spring break, eight Girl Scouts from Crestwood Intermediate and their siblings took a tour at Streetsboro Metal Recycling to get a head start on Earth Day. The girls brought aluminum cans with them, which they had started collecting  when the school year began. While at the facility, they learned first-hand about recycling, while earning funds for their troop in the process.

Friends of Melana (FOM) will hold their Fourth Annual Memorial 5k and 1 mile run/walk at Garrettsville Summerfest, Sunday, June 29, 2014 at 9am. Proceeds from the event are used to fund research for kid’s cancer specifically for Gliomas. Participants are asked to register at www.stopkidscancer.org and click on events. The cost is $25 per runner and $15 for the fun run/walk.

Newton Falls – March’s meeting of the Newton Falls Area Commerce Association tied up a few loose ends and set plans moving forward while discussing ideas for creating new opportunities for professional growth.

The agenda opened with time for special presentations and this month featured [member], the law offices of Turner, May & Shepherd. Representative Robert Gensler, Jr. took the floor for a few moments to explain that the firm handles matters such as probate law, including estates and family law, including adoptions, in addition to several other areas of the legal system. Bob also mentioned the importance of having a will in place so that the government is not left to decide how one’s wishes are to be carried out. Next month will feature “Santa” Rick Kerlin of Our Towne Construction.

Windham – Hope springs a new with Windham Community in Action’s (CIA) Community Garden of Hope. This past Saturday, Windham CIA held a ground breaking for their community garden that they will plant when the weather breaks.  Prior to the ground breaking ceremony, they held a name the garden contest and Victoria Showalter won the contest with the name, Community Garden of Hope. The new garden will be located just north of the Cortland Bank on Maple Grove Road.

windham-community-gardenThere are two parcels of land they will use for the garden, one is owned by the Village of Windham and the other is owned by Portage Woods.  Windham CIA has lease agreements with both entities at a very minimal cost.

The stage was set, approximately thirty people were waiting for the actual ceremony to begin when all of a sudden right before the scheduled start time the skies opened up and it poured. The rain did not dampen the spirit and the show went on, which included several speakers. Mary Lou from the county extension office and Portage County Master Gardeners talked about how gardening is beneficial to the community and the future of Windham. Bill Kot explained the process of composting and how it will be used in the garden. Paula Daniels explained how the schools will be involved in the garden and how beneficial the garden will be to the students as they learn about plant life. Julie Kelley, pastor of the Nazarene Church in Windham spoke on hope and how it is a gift, that it is intangible, invaluable and never ending. Hope is the beginning of the future.

Following the speeches, the first shovel was inserted into the ground only to hit roots. Following the ceremonial first shovels, the event was then moved to the fire station for refreshments.

This year, they plan to have approximately 10 raised bed, fruit tree, grape arbors, black berries bushes, and strawberry plants, with more items being added each year. They plan to have lighting, benches, a walking path and more, making the garden a place to reflect as well as help meet the nutritional needs of the community. A tentative design was drawn, however Matt Sorrick, Director of the Center for Science Education at Hiram College will assist with the layout and a new design to ensure the plants are getting the right sunlight etc for optimum growth and production.

Windham CIA wishes to thank the following donors Maruf Awad, Windham    Hardware, Windham Historical Society, Stoney’s Pizza, Cortland Banks, Roubic Law Offices, Randy & Brenda Slusher, Sharon & Larry Eye, Kenny & Freda Shearer, Miller Sand and Gravel, Little Tikes, Dollar general, Bob Cline, Andrea Hostetler, Michael Wallace, Cliff McGuire, Tom Hickman, The Village of Windham and Portage Woods for all their donations. They also want to thank the Windham Garden Club who has come on board to assist with the project. A special thanks to Rita Mullenax for her monetary donation to the project. Speaking of monetary donations, folks can make monetary donations at  Cortland Bank in Windham. Please make checks payable to Community in Action.

 

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The 4-H All Stars have elected their officers;  Joey Fresch, President; Danielle Popek, Vice President; Stephanie Popek, Secretary; Erin Fresch, Recreation; Jonathan Wiczen, Health and Safety; Rebecca Potter, Reporter. April 12th will be our next meeting. This will be our business meeting. We will also be making Easter candy to hand out to local Senior Citizens. The small animal pancake breakfast will be held May 3rd at the Fair Grounds from 7am to 1pm. The All Stars will work from 11 am to 1 pm at the breakfast. Anyone interested in joining the All Stars, or any questions contact Janet Nichols 440-548-5142 or 330-235-3687.

 

Garrettsville – On Sunday, March 2nd the Garrettsville Town Trotters went to the office of Dann Timmons and Amy Turos on Main Street in Garrettsville and painted the front window. The theme of the window was “Follow the Hoof Prints to 4-H”. This year marks the 100th anniversary for Extension (of which 4-H is a part of) in the United States. The Cooperative Extension office was created to bring education to the farmers. 4-H was developed to educate children through hands on teaching. The four Hs stand for Head, Heart, Hands and Health, and members are encouraged to use their four Hs to contribute to their community and world.

Thank-you to Mr. Timmons and Amy Turos for supporting us.

We have also inducted our 2014 officers: President-Olivia Doraski; Vice President-Jessica Fackler; Secretary-Kayla Gough; Treasurer-Julie McGrew; Scrapbook Keeper-Ashley Kaiser and News Reporter-Ryleigh Gough.

Congratulations to each.

On March 12th LMC held their monthly meeting, even if it was the worst day snow-wise. There were 6 of us attending. Alma Jones and Mary Leggett decorated for St. Patrick’s day. It was very cheerful and took our minds off the bad weather. Our program was presented by Iva Walker. Birthdays for members in March are Sally Kittle, Blanche Richmond, Anne Spolarich, Cathy Spolarich. We thought about you. Our thoughts were also about Josie Jarosz who passed away. The program was very interesting. It was a question and answer and the women had a good time coming up with the answers. We will be looking for better weather in April and everyone will be able to come to our meeting for a pleasant afternoon.