See something you’ll never forget, then notice it for years to come – guaranteed!

Witness the annual phenomenon of hundreds of chimney swifts swirling tornado-like and then plummeting into an old chimney en route to South America – an unforgettable spectacle by all accounts.

The Bird Tornado Strikes Again will be presented on Wednesday, September 5th at the Chardon Square Gazebo  and on September 12th at the Burton Square Gazebo.  Both programs will take place  from  7:30 to 8:30 p.m. 

Windham – This year’s Brick by Brick Celebration Dinner and Fundraiser held at Windham High School helped the Brick by Brick Endowment Fund reach two milestones.  The first one was they have exceeded the $200,000 mark after only 11 years. The second milestone was the need to construct a fourth wall to hold all the engraved bricks that have been sold.

Garrettsville-Hiram Rotarians and their guests–District Governor Steve Zabor, past District Governor Jay Dzurilla, Daniel Cartwright, Caitlyn Lawless and Tom & Sherri Collins– recently were treated to a program presented by  Carol Dombrose, founder and operator of Angel House, a facility offering retreats and other programs for inner city young people, and member of the Strongsville Rotary Club.

photo courtesy of the James A Garfield Historical Society

Garrettsville – Restoration leads to revival. The renovation of downtown’s Buckeye Block Building is out to prove that.

Just a year ago, the village’s anchor Main Street building was in such a severe state of deterioration, officials feared it was a public threat and might need to be torn down. Along with it would go four keystone businesses: Garrettsville Foot & Ankle Clinic, Hearth & Home Fireplace Shoppe, Shiffer’s Clock Repair, and Miller’s Lawn & Garden. And at the heart of the sagging building was the long-vacant Irwin Hardware space. 

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At the 75th anniversary of the All American Soap box Derby the Portage County Soap Box Derby was recognized as the best race city in America.  The regional directors voted for the county organization because it has increased the number of races in the last four years, their innovative ideas — such as cruise-in car shows, celebrity racing, the new moth balls racing (derby cars built before 1977), visitations to many organizations and functions around the county. All of these activities invite more racers to participate.
Pictured above are Joe Mazur All American CEO, Portage president Dean Olson , Kelly Heritage Portage race director (receiving the award) and Bill Gunther. 

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Windham – Windham Brick by Brick Scholarship Program will hold their annual dinner on August 18, 2012.  The doors will open at 5 pm with folks having the opportunity to view the new fourth wall and share stories.   A fabulous chicken dinner, including homemade pies, will be served at 6pm by the Windham Congregational United Church of Christ with the program following dinner at 7pm. This year the honoree is Don Miller who has served the community as a volunteer firefighter for 54 years.

A group of eleven volunteers from Mantua’s St. Joseph Parish recently participated in the Housing Repair Program out of St. Joseph Church in Clintwood, Virginia. Offering home repairs to the low-income people of Appalachia this outreach effort is coordinated by Sr. Jean Korkisch, CSC, who helps to ensure that those in need are warm, dry, and safe.

Windham Twp. – Windham Township Trustees met for their regular scheduled meeting last week with all trustees and fiscal officer present. Also in attendance, were township employee Mike Dye and Zoning inspector Joe Pinti.

The meeting was called to order by chairman Dann Timmons. Residents from Gotham Road were there to question what was being done about  the mobile homes on their road that are dilapidated and half-gutted. They also wanted something done about the high grass at another mobile home on the street. The residents even brought pictures of the problem areas. After hearing their complaints, the trustees and zoning inspector addressed the issue, stating that they have gone through the proper procedures and were at the point where the two mobile homes were supposed to be removed by the owners by June 1, 2012 or the trustees would have them removed and the cost assessed to the taxes. The trustees received a bid $5000 to have them removed prior to the owners gutting them. The contractor was contacted and issued a new bid of $2500 to remove each of them and said he could have them removed over the weekend. The trustees unanimously voted to have George Gibson remove the mobile homes and have the cost assessed to the owner’s taxes. The trustees will consider having a sheriff’s deputy to accompany the contractor.

Free gifts, a chance to win dozens of prizes and helping out the needy await customers walking through the doors of 10 area sewing stores during the dog days of August.

The Second Annual Charming Quilt Shop Tour will be Thursday, Aug. 23, through Saturday, Sept. 1. The tour takes shoppers to Cortland, Champion, Niles, Fowler, Garrettsville, Chardon and across the state line to Albion and Sharpsville, Pennsylvania.

Garrettsville’s last car cruise of the season will be held in conjunction with the Peach Social at the fire station on Elm Street this Saturday, August 11, 2012, ( rain date August 12, 2012) beginning at 5 pm. They will have live music provided by “The Boys are Back,” and the “Garretttones,” door prizes, 50/50 raffle and of course fresh peaches. Dash plaques will be given to the first 50 vehicles registered and are provided by Rick Patrick Auto Service and Sales. Trophies will also be presented for the Best GM, Best Ford, and Best Mopar, along with an “Other” category. Custom and Best of Show trophies will be awarded as well.

Garrettsville Area Chamber will also be holding their Annual Peach Social in conjunction with the car cruise.   Fresh sliced peaches and fresh peach pie with ice cream will be available. So grab your chairs, friends and family and come out  to celebrate the end of summer at the last car cruise of the season.

Anyone intersested in donating peach pies for Saturday’s event should contact Rick Patrick at 330-687-9637.  

Newton Falls – Residents of Newton Falls and recent visitors to the small town may have noticed a lot more orange and black than usual and it’s not because locals are getting into the school spirit a month early. Summer may be almost over, which means football season is right around the corner, but there’s a different reason for the presence of all the extra additions to the color palette: construction, construction and more construction!

Photo: Mialie T. Szymanski

As much as driving through, or completely around, construction can be a well-known hassle, in general construction, construction and more construction is intended to equal improvement, improvement and more improvement, and in this case the end result should be just that.

So, when all the dust settles, what can we expect to see? There are three major projects going on right in the main part of town. First of all, the fire department has been busily remodeling the building across from Arby’s where they used to store extra fire trucks and turning it into a fully operational second fire station. Station #2 is very nearly complete and will feature a live-in environment including kitchen, bathroom with shower, sleeping quarters, common area, and offices for the duty crew. The upgrade was made possible in part by a generous donation of $100,000 from the American Legion Post 236 in Newton Falls. The new facility, which will also house an ambulance, a rescue squad and a fire engine, will be up and running soon!

For another means of improving the safety of the town’s residents and also helping to aid the first-responders in doing their jobs, one only needs to look to the intersections throughout town to see a second project under development. A new traffic light system is being installed at the major intersections throughout the town. Provided by a grant, this more high-tech system will, among other things, be sensitive to the needs of approaching emergency vehicles by recognizing special receivers placed within the vehicles and will adapt the traffic pattern to allow the emergency vehicles a more rapid passage. The installation of the new lights will not be fully completed until at least next year (maybe longer) but progress is well underway.

Neither of these projects has significantly affected the flow of normal traffic, however, one set of ROAD BLOCK signs definitely has and drivers need to be aware, though certainly not surprised. The historic covered bridge, a long-time staple and visitor attraction, is yet again closed for repair due to damage by a passing vehicle. This is at least the third time in as many years that the route through the short bridge has been blocked and there is no definitive word when it will be open to traffic this time around as the city decides on the best course of action for restoring a beam that was broken by a moving truck at the end of July and has been hanging from its truss.

The bridge had been closed for a restoration project lasting two years and was reopened in 2007. The 9’6” clearance is clearly marked at both entrances of the path and large trucks are prohibited. When it is finally back in operation, drivers should use extra caution when approaching the one-lane covered bridge so that passers-by will not find it so quickly out-of-service and needing more repairs yet again in the near future.

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Caught up in the excitement of the Summer Olympics? Dream of owning a gold medal?  Bring your friends and have fun at Windham Library’s “Wet & Wild Olympics”, Monday, August 6 at 11:00 a.m.  Challenge yourself and others in a selection of outside games all guaranteed to get you wet!  If movies are more your speed, join us at Windham Library on Tuesday, August 14 at 12:30 p.m. for a free movie and craft.  We will enjoy a family friendly animated rendition of Dr. Seuss’s classic book about the threat of industrialization to nature.

Let me tell you the real story. What REALLY happened at the Battle of Lake Erie. Actually, I would love to do just that, but I can’t since I wasn’t around way back then. But Oliver Hazard Perry can, and that’s exactly what the heroic commodore did last Tuesday night as Perry himself, portrayed by scholar Jeremy Meier, took the stage under a giant red-and-white tent in downtown Warren and told of the tales of his adventures on the water. Dressed in the costume of Perry’s U.S. Navy uniform, Meier walked as Perry and talked as Perry, recounting the incident which many believe won the western frontier of Ohio for America. Perry spoke of the betrayal and intrigue surrounding the event with all the diplomacy and discretion expected of a well-to-do officer and entertained a crowd of over seven hundred spectators – in the lawn space of a tent that holds five hundred – with the harrowing account of defending his squadron of ships from the formidable enemy that was the British.

Garrettsville – On July 23, 2012, after a celebration of life (featuring colorful reminiscences by friend Mary Furillo) remembering long-time resident and active community member, Shirley Miller, an upbeat crowd gathered at the northeast corner of the James A. Garfield athletic field for a good-bye that she would have loved.

Windham – Gano’s Auto Clinic recently opened its door for business in Windham, ready to service your auto, light trucks, ATV, riding lawnmower and motorcycles. Owner Rich Gano has 26 years of repair experience and previously worked for D&A Oil. Gano’s Auto Clinic is located between St. Michaels Catholic Church and Circle K, also known as  9710 C East Center Street in Windham. The clinic’s hours are Monday thru Friday 8am until 4 pm and Saturdays from 8am. until noon. The hours are flexible and they may increase over time. Appointments are preferred but walk-ins are accepted. He can be reached at 330 326-0003 for appointments and questions.

A Retirement Ceremony was held on Vandenberg Air Force Base (AFB), California for Newton Falls, Ohio native MSgt John H. Shade. MSgt Shade is the son of Eleanor Shade of Newton Falls and the late Harry Lee Shade. MSgt Shade’s 24 year career began shortly after graduating from Newton Falls High School in 1988. He attended basic training at Lackland AFB and technical training at Goodfellow AFB, and then went to his First Duty Station at Royal Air Force Base Chicksands, England. Assignments followed to Fort Meade, Maryland; Osan Air Base, Republic of Korea; back to Goodfellow AFB, Texas and finally to Vandenberg AFB. In his tenure in the Air Force, Master Sergeant Shade was an Intelligence Analyst and an Instructor in his career field, and finished the last four years as a First Sergeant. He deployed to the countries of Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan during his career. His last unit of assignment was with the 30th Security Forces Squadron, where he took care of the morale, health and welfare and advised the Commander on discipline and various issues for the over 560 assigned personnel and their families. At the retirement ceremony MSgt Shade received Meritorious Service Medal, third oak leaf cluster, as well as many certificates and letters of appreciation from the President of the United States, and Governor of the Ohio, amongst many others.

Submitted by Cyndi Hogue


James A. Garfield (JAG) Marching Pride kicked-off their marching season with a band preview last Friday night at JAG Stadium. The students spent 12 hours each day last week learning music, choreographing movements, establishing camaraderie and unity as the band held their official band camp at the high school. The students took what they learned and gave their families and community a taste of what to expect this fall.

Dr. Alan Frame a Physical Therapist at Advanced Rehabilitation and Health Specialists in Mantua, achieved his Orthopaedic Clinical Specialist Certification from The American Board of Physical Therapy Specialities in June 2012. The certification provides formal recognition of advanced clinical knowledge, experience and skills in the area of sports and Orthopaedics. He is currently accepting patients and can be reached at 330-274-2747.

Nelson Twp. – Literary Musical Club (LMC) held their monthly meeting on July 11. We had eleven member present, sorry to report a couple of members are seriously ill. Our prayers for a speedy recovery are sento to them.

Newton Twp. – The cemetery association held their monthly meeting on July 19, 2012, Thursday, at 6 o’clock at the Township Building. Twelve people attended including two new members; one new member   was  not in attendance. It is great to see the interest of the community in becoming involved! There is so much history in the seven township cemeteries that many do not realize. This would make a wonderful school history project; assigning the students each a grave to research.  There are so many very old markers and headstones of which many have been repaired by the cemetery association workers. This takes a lot of time and hard labor. Some of these repaired stones have already been damaged. We ask the public to please report any vandalism they notice. This is sad as these graves  are the final resting place for the deceased. They deserve to be treated with respect and pride. This is hurtful to the surviving families and to those who labor hard to repair them. 

On July 16th, the Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary club was treated to a travelogue and a performance by Tyler Brady, a member of the Cleveland Youth Wind Symphony, just returned from a tour of Hungary and Poland.   He described the logistics of the tour and many of the experiences shared by the ninety-some students on the trip, which had enjoyable scenery and side trips as well as  performances to appreciative audiences at several venues.  Of particular interest were the visits to Auschwitz, to Krakow, to the relics of Pope John Paul II, to the bath houses of Budapest, to the salt mines.  He had mementos of all sorts and a video of singing Ukrainians; he had memories of a lifetime.

Windham – Windham Village Council met for their regularly scheduled meeting last week with all but one council member present.  The meeting was called to order by Mayor Rob Donham. Council approved the amended agenda, finance report, and minutes from previous two meetings, with one meeting being a special meeting. The fiscal officer announced he would be unavailable for the August meeting, after some discussion council voted to change the regular meeting date to Wednesday August 29, 2012 at 7pm in council chambers.

Village Solicitor Michelle Stuck gives Rick Patrick the oath of office. Photo: Benjamin Coll

Garrettsville – Village council president, Rick Patrick, was sworn in as the mayor of Garrettsville last week after the unexpected death of his friend and mentor, Craig Moser.

Patrick, who “did not want to become mayor this way”, took the  official oath of office on Wednesday morning in a brief, tear-filled cermony. A second ceremony was held on Saturday morning at Village Hall to allow family members and the entire council to be present.

Patrick will serve in the capacity of mayor until the 2013 municipal  elections. Should he decide not to run for the mayoral position, he will resume his seat on council on January 1, 2014.

Village council will be accepting letters of interest through 2:30 p.m. Friday, August 3rd from residents interested in filling two vacant seats on council.

Garrettsville Village Council is accepting letters of interest for two vacant Council seats, terms expiring December 31, 2013. Submissions must be received at Garrettsville Village Hall, 8213 High Street, Garrettsville, OH, no later than 2:30pm, Friday August 3, 2012.

Village Council will be holding a special meeting on Saturday, August 4, 2012 at 9:30am for the purpose of an executive session to consider appointments to the vacant council seats, and to generate a short list of potential candidates.

Garrettsville Village Council will also hold a special meeting on Tuesday, August 7, 2012, at 5:30pm for the purpose of an executive session to interview not more than four candidates for the two vacant council seats, and to consider appointments to those positions.

Covenant Bible Fellowship celebrated Christmas in July this month at their monthly Loaves and Fishes Meal.

Earlier in the year the ladies’ group from the church thought it would be cool to do a Christmas in July themed meal for their monthly free meal. The group had the Christmas tree set-up, decorated the hall in a Christmas motif, along with Christmas music and donned Santa hats and reindeer antlers while serving the public. 

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The James A. Garfield Historical Society, meeting in the historic Mott Building, Main Street, Garrettsville on July 16, 2012, began their proceedings by accepting several donations to their collection of documents and artifacts.

From former resident, Virginia Quale, an Underwood portable typewriter (Remember those?),  a Garrettsville H.S. graduation cap with  classmates’ signatures, postcards and a mystery object which will require investigation.  From Tony Scarl came a milk bottle and a jar of spices from the now-defunct Doc’s Restaurant on Main St.  Julie Fredrickson contributed a book of court records from the late 1800’s.  Jhon Kline’s donation was a 1949 Ford automobile advertisement from the Hecky-Pollock dealership in Garrettsville. A painting by local artist Celia Thomas was donated by Dennis Eberhart.

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Bicycles are more welcome now than ever in your Geauga Park District. After evaluating trail conditions for suitability for bicycles, the Board of Park Commissioners has decided on July 12 to expand access to bicycles on the trails in the following parks: Orchard Hills Park, Observatory Park, Frohring Meadows, Chickagami Park, Headwaters Park, Beartown Lakes Reservation, Sunnybrook Preserve and The Rookery.

Selected parks were chosen for their accessible aggregate and asphalt trails, Executive Director Tom Curtin said. However, pedestrians will continue to have the right of way on these trails, and bicyclists must yield to all others (skaters, walkers, etc.) while biking in a controlled, responsible manner.

Bicyclists must also travel no more than two abreast, keep right except to pass with caution, announce their passing so as not to startle others, and move off trails when stopped.

Signage with this trail etiquette will be added soon to the pergola at each of the above parks.

All bike-friendly trails are open only to non-motorized forms of transportation, with the exception of motorized wheelchairs, which are permitted. Call 440-286-9516 with questions.

What is the Olympic Spirit? We recognize it when we see it in an athlete who excels in his sport through sustained training, discipline and competition. When he experiences struggles and setbacks, he refuses to give up. He keeps striving.

While the back story of every Olympic athlete will likely exemplify these characteristics, this story focuses on one of our own: Justin Rodhe, age 27. His road to the 2012 London Olympics has been long, winding and improbable. But due to that tenacious Olympic spirit of his, Rodhe now finds himself representing Canada in the shot put.

Home Instead Senior Care proudly announces the first class of CAREGivers to complete their new nationally recognized Alzheimer’s training program called CARE: Changing Aging through Research and Education.

“This training program is the best I’ve seen,” states Theresa Dash, Human Resources Manager for Home Instead Senior Care, “and really takes our belief, ‘To Us It’s Personal’ to heart.”  The classroom instruction includes hands-on and practical applications for Caregivers to better understand the many behaviors associated with Alzheimer’s and other dementias.  The techniques learned not only help Caregivers to manage these behaviors, but also build trust with the client, keep them safe and share their heart.

Troy Twp – Ken Zwolinski, owner of Ken’s Auto Body in Troy Township, prepares to spray painted rain barrels with a clear coat sealant at his shop.  Ken began donating this service to the Geauga Soil and Water Conservation District’s Rain Barrel Yard Art Campaign four years ago when his daughter, Taryn Zwolinski, painted her first barrel for the project.   The District truly appreciates the Zwolinski family’s dedication to water conservation and community education!

It’s been an exciting year for Hiram alumnus Scott Starkey.  In January, Simon & Schuster published his new novel, How to Beat the Bully Without Really Trying.  Geared to middle grade readers, this humorous “boy meets bully” tale has enjoyed strong appeal with parents and kids alike.  But for Starkey, one of the year’s highlights will come on Saturday, August 4, when he returns to Ohio for a special book signing and reading at The Village Bookstore on Main Street.

What makes the upcoming event particularly notable is that Starkey’s How to Beat the Bully takes place in Garrettsville.

Nelson Twp. – Nelson Township Trustees met for their regular scheduled meeting last week with all trustees, fiscal officer and twelve guests in attendance. The meeting was called to order by Chairman Jim Turos.  Fiscal Officer, David Finney presented the minutes from the last two meetings which were approved as presented. Mr. Finney also presented the proposed 2013 operating budget, after some discussion, the trustees approved the budget. Discussions were held on the Pierce Road Project. The road is now open but last weeks heavy rain has caused some erosion problems.  The trustees agreed that Snavely Excavating will need to come back and fix the erosion issue. In the meantime, the trustees voted (Jim Turos no, Joe Leonard and Tom Matota, yes) to retain 4% of contracted monies owed to Snavely Excavating until they are satisfied that they have met the contract’s requirements. Snavely sub-contracted out the paving to Ronyak paving who will also have to come back and fix a few things.  

The Geauga Lyric Theater Guild invites you to take an exhilarating journey past the second star to the right and straight on till morning. The Elementary School drama production of “Peter Pan” swoops onto the stage with the Lost Boys, Natives, Mermaids, Tink and Captain Hook’s swashbuckling Pirates. Led by the boy who refused to grow up, the Darling children find themselves intertwined into an adventurous land of mystery and wonderment. This cast of 37 talented young children , directed by Angela Miloro – Hansen, has been working hard for the last six weeks to learn lines, develop memorable characters and gain knowledge on all aspects of live theater.

The Northern Chapter, Ohio Region, of the Antique Auto Club of America (AACA), a non-profit 501 (c)3 organization, is planning a fun filled family summer event at the Patterson Fruit Farm in Chesterland, Ohio on Sunday August 19, 2012- a Genuine Antique Auto Show! The show, held on the grass at the Farm, at 11414 Caves Rd., 2.5 miles north of Mayfield Rd., will showcase vehicles that are a minimum of twenty five years old in 19 technically judged classes. There will be no participant judging. It is anticipated that 200 quality vintage and antique display vehicles will attend. Awards include: Best of Show, Children’s Choice, Patterson Fruit Farm Choice and 1st, 2nd., and 3rd. in each class. Gates open at 8 A.M., cars on the field by 10 A.M. and the awards ceremony begins at 3:30 P.M. It is anticipated that the awards ceremony will conclude at approximately 4:30 P.M. Pre-registration deadline is August 14, 2012

Just a month ago, Trumbull County-based daily newspaper, the Tribune Chronicle celebrated its 200th anniversary of publication. During the Founders’ Day festivities, community members were able to partake in a bit of history – and become a bit of history – as they strolled through Courthouse Square enjoying locally-themed lectures, quilt-making exhibits, and the opportunity to view vehicles from “the olden days” all to the sounds of a “newsie” calling out the day’s headlines in old-fashioned style.

Now residents and visitors are once again invited back in time as the traveling historical group, Ohio Chautauqua, comes to town full of characters and stories of the earliest days of our state. The theme for Ohio Chautauqua 2012 is “When Ohio Was the Western Frontier” and the event will feature a week full of workshops, musical entertainment, and “living history” performances involving some of the key players in Ohio’s beginning formation.

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On her birthday, July 3, Grace and her daughter Jeanne Ehresman (both of Ravenna) celebrated at one of her favorite places (Pizza Hut) with her double cheese pizza! Then on July 7- Grace celebrated at her son and daughter-in-laws (Ron & Donna Ehresman) home  in Olmstead Twp. The party was also for Grace’s great grandson, Isaac Pennock (15 on June 30) and son Ron (69 on July 10). Also in attendance for this celebration were Pam, Bob & Sam Pennock of Plymouth, MI; Kim, Mark, Alice, Ben & Max Ehresman of Dublin, OH and Anne Pennock & Ken Yeager of Olmsted Falls.

Garrettsville –  Proposed Ordinance 2012-15 that would create an exterior maintenance code for the Village was up for a second reading.  A Public Hearing on the proposed ordinance will be held before the August 8  council meeting.    If  passed, the ordinance will require that all properties within the Village be maintained to the code standards and will give the zoning inspector authority to investigate any observed or reported violations.

Nelson Twp – Local movie producer Tyler Davidson and crew were in Nelson Ledges this week filming scenes for his new coming of age movie “Toy’s House”.  The comedy centers around three teenage boys who head to the wilderness to escape conflict with their parents.  They attempt to build a makeshift house and live off the land, then mayhem ensues.  

The Kelly Miller Circus Clowns Carlee and Charlie were in town earlier this week to promote the circus that arrives in Windham on July 30th. Pictured above (left to right) are Kaylee Nichols and Zoey St. John with the clowns.

The Kelly Miller Bros. Circus, founded during the Depression, is marking another milestone this year as it celebrates its 74th anniversary. Founded in 1938 by Obert Miller and his sons, Kelly and Dores, this traditional tented circus has seen the passing of the millennium and still offers the same great family entertainment it presented in its humble beginnings. While the show in 1938 was little more than the Miller family, some ponies and a couple of monkeys, they still moved through the country, as they  do today, in trucks and went through the same route each day of setting up and giving performances in a new town.
The all new 2012 season will feature elephants, horses, llamas, camels, clowns, and a host of international circus stars, but each morning the public gets an altogether different kind of show as the circus lot comes to life. Circus trucks pull onto the lot in the early morning hours, animals are unloaded, stakes are driven and elephants lift the giant Big Top into the air. Best of all, the public is welcomed to watch the entire spectacle free of charge.

In fact, after the first of the four massive poles that support the Big Top are set in place, the public is invited to step into the tent and see men and beasts complete their work. A knowledgeable circus veteran will be on hand to explain the action and answer questions about circus life.


Facts about the Kelly Miller Family:
Number of people on the road with Kelly Miller Circus- 72
Personnel in the home office & marketing department- 15
Total number of animals- 24
The cast on the road includes a cook, a school teacher, and even a mayor (Kelly Miller’s president, David Rawls, was once mayor of Hugo, Oklahoma)

Circus Equipment
Show-owned semi-trucks- 6
Other show-owned trucks and vehicles- 9
Staff and performers vehicles-18
Size of vinyl roof of the Big Top- 11,824 square feet
Area of the vinyl wall of the big top- 3,912 square feet

Weighty Issues:
The Kelly Miller Performing Elephants
Viola- 9,540 lbs • Libby-7,820 lbs • Nina- 6,520 lbs
Tent material (vinyl only, no poles or cables)- 7,297 lbs

This season the Kelly Miller Bros. Circus will travel nearly 10,000 miles and give performances over 200 cities and towns as it winds across North America from March through October. The all-new edition promises a more exciting and extravagant exhibition than ever. Everyone is invited to step back in time as the Kelly Miller Bros. Circus brings the history and tradition of the old fashioned circus to Windham on Monday, July 30, 2012 thanks to the sponsorship of the Windham Historical Society.

Performances will begin at 4:30 & 7:30 p.m. on Monday at the KT School Grounds- 9032 Maple Grove Rd, and the tent raising will begin at approximately 9:00 a.m.

Advanced tickets available at Windham G & F Mini Mart, Monica’s Café, Renaissance Family Center, Cortland Bank & Circle K, At Garrettsville: Skylane Bowling, Tickets bought in advance are $10.00 for Adults and $6.00 for Children. Tickets purchased on show day at the Circus Box Office are $15.00 for Adults and $7.00 for Children.

 Monday just before 5:30pm cars began streaming into Village Park by the dozens for the first of the week-long divisional softball tournament games last week as Garrettsville played host to the Ohio Girls Softball Organization (OGSO) Divisional Tournaments.  The tournament had three divisions ( A, B & C) with four brackets A3, B1, C1 & C2.  Monday, A Division, bracket A3 began tournament play and Tuesday the B Division, bracket B1 and the C Division, brackets C1 & C2 began their quest for a state playoff spot.  Several teams forfeited before the games even got started but those who played, came and played hard.

Fans streamed in, and staked their claim; waiting for the coveted call from the umpire, “Play Ball.” Throughout the course of the week the fans saw the pitchers pitch, batters hit, the fielders catch, and the dust fly; it was a week of softball at its best. The tournament continued all week with the final round of divisional play being held on Saturday. There were four final games played on Saturday to determine who would advance to the quarterfinals of the state tournament held in Wellington next Saturday.

Saturday morning at 10 am there were still four Garrettsville teams in contention for the state quarterfinals between the three divisions (A, B & C). Division A, bracket A3 game between the Garrettsville Eagles and Crestwood Victory kicked-off at 10 am and when the day was over Garrettsville clinched the divisional championship and advanced to the quarterfinals. They will face Amherst Wranglers in Wellington on field #1 Saturday July 21, 2012 at 10 am.

Division B, bracket B1 had two Garrettsville teams battling it out to see who would advance to the state tournament. When the dust settled — literally — Photos by Stacy defeated Sean’s Pub, clinching the state berth for the B1 bracket. Photos by Stacy will play the Columbia Crushers Saturday at 10 am in Wellington on field #2.

Two-time state winner Garrettsville JAGS took on the Mogadore Pink Panthers at 10 am to compete for the C1 bracket. The Pink Panthers took an early lead before the JAGS pounded out 11 runs in one inning taking control of the game and earning a spot at the state quarterfinals. The JAGS will face the Grafton Verizon Wireless on Saturday at 10 am on field #3 in Wellington.

In the last game of the week, Mogadore Wildcats challenged Crestwood Intensity for the Division C, bracket C2 championship. The game was a pitchers duel with the teams exchanging leads.   The game was never more than a one run game, with Mogadore Wildcats taking the lead in the 6th inning and closing the door on Crestwood Intensity’s season.  The Wildcats will face Bristol Blue Devils Saturday at 12:30 in Wellington on field#3.

Winners in this Saturday’s games in Wellington will advance to the State Finals, July 28th also held in Wellington.

Garrettsville – Garrettsville unveiled its $6 million expansion and improvement of the village’s 52-year-old wastewater treatment plant with public tours on July 14. The new extended aeration system went online in February, following a two-year period of final planning and construction.

The new system is 99.5 percent effective in removing bacteria and harmful microorganisms from the wastewater before it’s returned to Eagle Creek. (A water sample is taken prior to discharge of treated effluent back to Eagle Creek, ensuring that the water complies with safety standards.)

The state-of-the-art system utilizes numerous 19-foot-deep holding tanks at various stages of the decontamination process to aerate incoming wastewater from storm sewers, industry, business and household use. The water is oxygenated and decontaminated with the use of beneficial bacterial colonies and enzymes which feed on the pollutants; plus a mechanical system of screens, pumps, and filters; as well as ultraviolet light for disinfection instead of chlorine. By the end of the process, the sludge is safe to use as fertilizer on farmers’ fields.

The village is one mile square, but 16 miles of wastewater collection flows into the treatment plant. Treatment capacity has increased nearly five times the volume of the old system, to a half-million gallons of water per day. Considering the fact that the village generates about 180,000-300,000 gallons of wastewater daily, this expansion will accommodate robust future growth.

As water department superintendent Jeff Sheehan explained during the tours, the village allowed raw sewage to be discharged directly into Eagle Creek up until 1960, when it installed the initial wastewater treatment plant. Garrettsville was actually ahead of the curve among most municipalities, who didn’t recognize their role in preventing water pollution until after the publication of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring in 1962.

The wastewater treatment plant was upgraded and improved incrementally every decade, but this most recent expansion was a major overhaul. During the boom years in the 1990s, 15-20 new homes a year were being built in Garrettsville. With that pace of growth, the water department realized they needed a larger footprint for adequate expansion. Eventually, the village was able to expand by purchasing the Clyde property through eminent domain to the west of their existing parcel along Water Street.

Residents have been helping to offset the $6 million project cost through 8% rate increases for three years in a row (a 36% total rate increase). Loan repayment estimates are $450,000 annually. But thanks to a $300,000 Issue One grant and a 0% interest loan from the EPA, the water department is saving $2 million in projected interest costs.

Although the official tour day has passed, Sheehan says he would be happy to take interested residents on tours of the wastewater treatment plant any time. Call (330) 527-2080 to inquire.


For the 13th year, the Geauga and Portage Soil and Water Conservation Districts (SWCDs) sponsored the Wonders of Watersheds (WOW) education workshops in June 2012.  A total of 20 workshop participants traveled to unique ecosystems including wetlands, bogs, a freshwater estuary and Lake Erie.  Pictured here, teachers and facilitators of the Advanced WOW workshop explored Old Woman Creek National Estuarine Research Reserve and participated in water sampling research on Lake Erie.  The workshop was made possible through an ODNR Division of Soil and Water Resources watershed mini-grant.

Pictured Left to Right: front row – Pat Betteley (Madison), Nancy Speck (Ashland University), Ann Marie McDonnell (Columbus), Monica Chesla (Mantua), Dennis Versele (Bellefontaine). Back row – Lynn Vogel (Portage SWCD), Linda Perkins (Mount Gilead), Sarah Freundlich (Lexington), Michelle Lillo (Lexington), Molly Niese (Findlay), Valerie Kotlar (Ravenna), Stacy Jarvi (Mantua), and Ann Keefe (Old Woman Creek Estuary)