Wednesday, September 3, 2014
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Scrappers Baseball – Enjoy a baseball game of your choice throughout the 2014 season and help rebuild Garrettsville in the process. Scrappers baseball ticket vouchers are available at the Villager Office (Mon-Wed & Fri 10-5; Thur 12-5 and Sat 10-2) or by contacting Dale Ochwat (814) 853-5095 for $8 each. For every ticket sold, $4 will be donated to #GarrettsvilleStrong.

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Garrettsville - After securing ownership of the former Grist Mill last Friday, owner Mike Maschek has spared no time in beginning the asbestos abatement of the property. Crews have been hard at work carefully removing the faded brown siding from the building, and the result is evident.

Once the materials containing asbestos have been removed from the premises, demolition can begin on the two dilapidated structures behind the main building.

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Mantua Twp. – In a recent meeting of the Mantua Township Trustees, Zoning Inspector John Dickey reported that he had issued verbal notices to 28 residents for excess, unlicensed vehicles. He also reported that the new signs were now posted in the proper locations at the LaDue Reserve development.

Cemetery Sexton Jim Aldrich reported that he has received $1,065 for foundation fees, 1,925 in burial fees, and $2,540 in grave fees. He also reported that the newly refreshed signs have been set in place. The trustees thanked Mr. Aldrich and the volunteers who accomplished the job.

Frank Horak reported on behalf of the Veteran’s Memorial Committee that they are in the final stages of preparation on the Memorial, and that plans are in place for the Memorial’s dedication on Monday, May 26th at noon, immediately following the Memorial Day parade and ceremony at the cemetery. The committee plans to use the Town Hall to display documents, and ask the Historical Society to open their museum for the occasion.

Later, Trustee Jason Carlton read an email from Assistant Chief Matt Roosa of the Mantua-Shalersville Fire Department asking him to let township residents know that the department received an upgrade to its insurance services rating. The email explained that on average, the ISO evaluates fire departments every 10 years.  The Fire Department was last evaluated in 1994. Based on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the best ranking, departments are judged on performance, speed, efficiency and training. The last score received by the MSFD was a ranking of 6/9. As of May 1st, 2014, however, the fire department ranks at a 4/4y. This phenomenal improvement in ISO rating should lead to a decrease in insurance premiums for property owners in the Mantua-Shalersville community, so residents are encouraged to contact their insurance companies to determine if the new ISO rating will decrease their premiums.

In other news, Fiscal Officer Marie Stehli requested a budget workshop to be held on June 10th at 7 pm, and a budget hearing to be held on July 3rd at 7pm, followed immediately by the regular trustee meeting. In addition, she requested that the trustee meeting originally scheduled for Thursday, July 17th be moved to Tuesday, July 15th due to scheduling conflicts.

Lastly, the trustees discussed the proposed road repair list, estimating that 4.76 miles of township roads will need chip and seal work, and 13.39 miles will require crack seal work.

The next regularly scheduled meeting of the Mantua Township Trustees will be held on June 5th at 7 pm in the Township Hall.

 

Last Wednesday, at the rescheduled May 21st village council meeting, council approved Ordinance 2014-13.  The new ordinance will increase water rates 7% on July 1, 2014, another 7% on January 1, 2015 and another 7% on January 1, 2016.  The Ordinance then allows for a 2% annual increase beginning January 2017.  These increases are for water rates only and will not affect sewer rates.  The increase in rates will help build cash reserves that are needed for replacement projects and any emergency repairs.  There are still some sections of 100+ year-old pipes awaiting replacement.

Council did say at the previous month’s meeting that they do have the authority to suspend a scheduled future  increase and said they will if sufficient funds are in reserve for capital improvements and repairs.

Mayor Patrick announced that the Portage County Commissioners awarded a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) to the village.  Funds from the grant will be distributed in 2015 and will provide for streetscape improvements on Main Street that include new 14-foot wide sidewalks and new lighting.  The CDBG grant requires no matching funds from the village.  The village applied for the grant as part of an effort to rebuild Main Street after the devastating fire on March 22 that destroyed one quarter of downtown Main Street buildings.  The grant has nothing to do with the GARRETTSVILLESTRONG efforts for rebuilding organized by the Garrettsville Area Chamber of Commerce.

In other business, council tabled Ordinance 2014-14, an Ordinance pertaining to compensatory time, and approved the following: Ordinance 2014-21, pertaining to compensation for the village solicitor when acting as the zoning inspector, Ordinance 2014-22 allowing the mayor and village clerk to sign plats for recording  the Fox Hollow subdivision, and Resolution 2014-23 authorizing a temporary change in employment status for the head dispatcher while she attends the Police Academy.  Council also approved a motion to allow the mayor to accept repaving bids for Brosius Rd.

Mayor Patrick announced that it is a “done deal” and Pizza Hut will be starting construction soon for their new store in the west end of Garfield Plaza.

If you’d like to know more of what is happening in your community attend a meeting.  The next regular Village Council meeting is scheduled for June 11, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. at Village Hall.

 

Nelson Twp – Officials present at the May 21, 2014 trustee meeting were fiscal officer J. David Finney and township trustees Joe Leonard, Mike Elias, and Tom Matota. Also present were, Roads Supervisor Chuck Vanek, Zoning Inspector Anna Mae VanDerHoeven.

After the meeting was called to order, Finney asked the Trustees whether there were any additions to the evening’s agenda. With no additions made, the meeting proceeded as scheduled.

Eric Thoren, Assistant Chief of the Garrettsville Freedom Nelson Joint Fire District, informed the trustees that the department had been elected to host a water shuttle training session. He was in attendance to request permission to make use of the Pixley Park parking lot to setup the equipment and pump water off. The department plans to shoot water off into the swampy area. Training would be scheduled for 8am on Sunday, June 8th and would last about 2 hours. Matota made a motion to allow the fire department “to do whatever they need to do” for their training exercise. All trustees voted in favor of the motion.

As the next order of business, Finney presented the trustees with copies of the May 7th meeting minutes, as well as the bills & wages to be paid, totaling  $52,103.24. The trustees also received copies of the fund status report; at the time of the meeting the townships pooled funds totaled over $353,584.77. Matota asked Finney to elaborate on a few items in the bills & wages. Elias made a motion to pay bills and wages as presented. All voted in favor.

Finney reported that he will need to make an appointment with the county engineer, as there seems to be a gap in communication regarding the road projects. The township is waiting on the engineer’s office to provide specifications for the roads, a wait that is impeding the township’s ability to set dates for advertising, receiving and opening job bids. Finney also mentioned that the mower and tractor purchase have been moving along thanks to assistance from Matota. Finney spoke with the tractor dealer who said the tractor has arrived and is being prepped. The mower should arrive for it by mid-June.

VanDerHoeven has talked to Lisa at Regional Planning about demolishing the structure (known locally as “the feral cat house”) on Newell Ledge Rd first. The vermin and numerous feral cats in the property are posing a great concern for neighboring property owners. Lisa also informed VanderHoeven that asbestos testing is currently being conducted at all properties. The results should be received by the end of May.

Vanek reported that Pure Ionics had no knowledge of selling the township the equipment in place at the Community House. The company had no record of the equipment. Matota would like to see the old equipment removed, especially if it’s not being used/not hooked up. Vanek also mentioned that his crew was getting things prepped for Memorial Day. They have also begun patching soft spots in roads. Matota asked about the new part-time positions, and Vanek responded that the first new hire is working well.

Elias reported that he had spoken with ODOT regarding Speed Limit on SR 305. He was informed by an ODOT representative that the amount of traffic on SR 305 is insufficient to change the speed limit. They are aware of the Amish population along the road, and the increased foot traffic, which was taken into account when setting the speed limit. ODOT will, however be putting up signs along the road to alert motorists of the presence of pedestrian, and buggy traffic.

Leonard reported that the playground equipment for Pixley Park has been delivered, and is ready to assemble. The goal is to have the equipment assembled sometime in June, and Leonard would like to have as many many volunteers from the community as possible.

Matota reported that he attended the County Engineer Association meeting. He presented the other trustees with information from the meeting.

Leonard reported that the Salt Barn footers are scheduled to be poured during the first week of June. He also reported that there has been some trouble getting people to quote the fuel tank project due to its small scope. The design for the fuel paddock has also changed slightly, which has the bollards moving to the face exterior.

The meeting was adjourned following the signing of checks.

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Portage County - This annual race held on the Saturday after the 4th of July is presented by the Portage Park District Foundation, with assistance by the Portage Park District and dozens of volunteers, partners and sponsors.  This years event will be held on July 12, 2014

Go solo or grab a friend and create a team to have a great time for a good cause in beautiful Northern Portage County. The Headwaters Adventure Race starts and ends in historic Mantua Village and involves a 2-mile run on the Headwaters Trail past a State nature preserve, a 10-mile cycle past scenic landscapes and preserved farmlands, and a 5-mile paddle on the lovely Upper Cuyahoga State Scenic River.  Register early if you need to rent a boat; boat rentals are limited to the first 50 canoes and 50 kayaks.

Registration and additional information can be found on-line at http://portageparkdistrict.org or by contacting the Portage Park District by phone for more information: 330.297.7728.

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Ravenna - Coleman Adult Day Services is offering an informational session to those Portage County families and caregivers who are feeling the stresses of being the main support of a loved one in need, targeting those who are assisting someone who has Alzheimer’s disease or other dementias. This free event will be held on Tuesday, June 10th at 5:30p.m. at the Coleman Adult Day Services facility, 6695 N. Chestnut St., in Ravenna, near Ravenna High School. A free dinner is included and our staff will also be present to provide care to your loved ones if needed. Although this session is free, an RSVP is required by June 3rd as seating is limited to only 75.

Dr. Jim Collins, Ph.D., is guest speaking on the very serious matters of both caregiver burnout and depression as well as medication misuse among the elderly.  Dr. Collins has taught gerontology, sociology, anthropology, and psychology which paved the way to providing training, education and motivation to senior care companies, hospice, home health care, and hospitals for more than 20 years. He is known for his writings, consulting, and his continuing education classes both live and online.

Dementia is not a single disease in itself. Instead, it’s a collective term used to describe a group of symptoms affecting thinking and social abilities severe enough to interfere with daily functioning. It indicates problems with at least two brain functions such as memory loss, impaired judgment, language, and the inability to perform some daily activities.

Unfortunately, dementia is an incurable disease and can get extremely frustrating. The feelings of anger, guilt, discouragement, worry, and social isolation are very common. However, services and facilities such as Coleman’s Adult Day Services make it easier on the chosen caregiver. They provide an affordable alternative that allows caregivers time for work, personal or other family needs. While at Adult Day, caring and certified professionals will treat your family member like one of their own. They will participate in structured, therapeutic and social activities that are goal oriented for mind, body, and spirit that will provide stimulation and the best opportunity for success for our participants.

CEU certificates for 2 hours will also be available for any nurses and social workers that may need them. For more information regarding the June 10th informational session or to RSVP please contact Coleman Adult Day Services at (330) 296-3214.

 

Calling all tractor lovers, owners, or those who have access to tractors, Summerfest is looking for you! That’s right — the Summerfest Committee is looking for  tractor owners for the Seventh Annual Tractor Parade held during Garrettsville Summerfest on June 28, 2014 in Garrettsville.

tractor-parade-riderThis year’s Tractor Parade Theme is “Breast Cancer Warrior” and will have everyone seeing pink on  Saturday.  The committee is asking participants to consider decorating their tractors in pink to honor those that have fought breast cancer, those who are in the middle of the battle and those who lost their battle.  Those who have a warrior might want to add a trailer to their tractor so they can bring their warrior along in the largest tractor parade in Ohio.

The parade will be Saturday, June 28th at noon with the line-up beginning at 9am. Once again, they will have the tractor preview prior to the parade’s noon step – off at James A. Garfield High School. One will want to arrive early and take some time to mingle with other tractor enthusiast and show off their “baby.”

Registration for the tractor parade has begun and can be done at Century 21 GoldFire Real Estate at 8028 State Street in Garrettsville. Registration can also be done on-site on parade day.  Just arrive early to get registered.  Questions may be directed to Kathie Lutz (330) 687-5900. Please be aware that drivers must have a valid driver’s license to operate the field tractors on State Route 88.

This year trophies will be awarded in the following categories:

1) Oldest Tractor

2) Most Unique Tractor

3) Best Decorated tractor to the theme “Breast Cancer Warrior”

4) Best Decorated “Warrior Wagon”

This promises to be an exciting event, when tractors of all sizes and ages rumble down the streets of downtown Garrettsville in an all-inclusive tractor parade. Let’s make this the best parade ever by exceeding the record for Garrettsville, which is 220 tractors.

The Tractor Parade is sponsored by Century 21 GoldFire Real Estate

Garrettsville Summerfest is traditionally held on the fourth full weekend in June at the intersection of State Routes 82 and 88 in downtown historic Garrettsville. This year’s festival theme is “Rockin’ to Rebuild”. www.garrettsvillesummerfest.com 

 

Garrettsville – On May 31, 2014 Laura Peskin will be signing her new book and greeting readers at the Village Bookstore, 8140 Main Street, Garrettsville.  The book, Deep Cover Cleveland: 99 little known things about Northeast Ohio, vol. I, has two full chapters on Garettsville in relation to the gristmill, waterwheel,  maple sugar/ candy industry and Crane family.  The book also has much on Randolph, Mantua, Chardon and Akron.

The first of a series, Deep Cover Cleveland vol. I allows long time residents of a region, as well as newcomers, to view their home with new eyes — with fascinating buried facts dancing before them.  Though the subject matter for this work is not well known, it should be.  Far from bringing trivia to light, Deep Cover Cleveland presents topics of natural, cultural and social import and ties them to larger events in the region and world.  Volume I, spanning geologic time and the last ice age up to the financial depression of 1893, uncovers forgotten facets of Northeast Ohio’s changing landscape, prehistory, Native American heritage, unique architectural history, and more, always keeping the area’s people primary.

Laura Peskin, an almost lifelong greater-Clevelander, has contributed to Ohio Archaeologist and the Ohio Cardinal.   Peskin’s writings have been linked to research websites around Cleveland including those of Shaker Heights Library and Bluestone Heights.  Peskin started her own business in the 1990s and later earned an MA at John Carroll University.

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

Garrettsville – Garrettsville can’t get enough pizza.

Pizza_HutAt least that’s the point of view of Hallrich, Inc., which is adding a Garrettsville location to its network of Pizza Hut pizzerias. Mayor Rick Patrick said that Hallrich signed ownership papers last week, making the pick-up/delivery drive-through a soon-coming reality.

Garrettsville’s Pizza Hut will be nestled between State Street Salon and Domino’s Pizza on State Street. The new building will include two additional spaces for lease to another fast food franchise or two.

There are already 92 Pizza Hut “InnerCrust” restaurant locations in Ohio, scattered among 24 counties of Ashland, Ashtabula, Columbiana, Coshocton, Geauga, Hancock, Henry, Knox, Lake, Lorain, Mahoning, Medina, Morrow, Ottawa, Portage, Shelby, Stark, Summit, Trumbull, Wayne and Williams, plus the cities of Piqua and Solon, and the Village of Sunbury. Locally owned and operated, Hallrich, Inc. spawned the Pizza Hut franchise in Ohio.

According to company marketing material, parent company Pizza Hut was founded in 1958. It began with two brothers borrowing $600 from their mother to start a pizzeria in in Wichita, Kansas. Pizza Hut has now become the biggest pizza company in the world.

Hallrich Incorporated is the company which bought a modest Pizza Hut franchise and then brought it to Northeast Ohio in 1968. At the time, there were fewer than a hundred Pizza Hut restaurants open nationwide, and the menu featured only three items: pizza, beer and soft drinks. Today, Hallrich employs more than 2,000 Ohioans in a variety of service and management positions.

Hallrich has helped launch two new Pizza Hut concepts; the Italian Bistro and WingStreet eateries, the latter offering a variety of wing flavors, wing meals sandwiches, and entrée salads.  Hallrich continues to revitalize the Pizza Hut brand with new signage, remodeling, and a more contemporary restaurant décor.

In terms of  community involvement, Hallrich supports the Book-It national reading program, offers fundraising programs for non-profits, and makes pizza donations to hot meal programs. Further, Hallrich has donated to the Harvest Program and Alex’s Lemonade Stand foundation to help fight against childhood cancer.

Mayor Patrick says the timeline for groundbreaking and opening of the new restaurant has not yet been settled, but a Hallrich representative will meet with the Village Planning Commission during its next meeting at 7pm on Thursday, June 5.

Garrettsville already has Domino’s Pizza, Zeppe’s Pizzeria, Italian Garden, Cal’s and The Pasta House. But Pizza Hut’s market study determines that this small village has a big appetite for pizza and pasta, and is confident that it will make plenty of room for Pizza Hut, as well.

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

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

The current state of the former grist mill.

Photo by: Estelle R. Brown

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

The JAG band played the Garfield Alma Mater.

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

Thanks to all.

 

In my spare time I love to run. Whether it’s inside or outside, I just love to set a pace and go, leaving all of my worries behind, it’s a great way to get away for a while. But what does my running have to do with my wine column this week? Well this weekend I ran in the Cleveland Rite Aid 10K and one of the advertisements was a list of 6 races that all have to do with wine!

Napa Valley has a long list of races throughout the Summer and into the Fall. Some of my favorite races include the Napa to Sonoma Wine County Half Marathon that will be taking place on July 20th. This overly popular race requires you to enter a lottery to be accepted into the race. How neat would it be to run 13.1 miles through wine country in California? Or get ready for the Wine Country Half Marathon along California’s Central Coast Vineyards in May 2015. The winner of the half marathon is awarded their weight in wine!

Looking for a few races on the east coast? Head on over to Loudoun County, Virginia next weekend (May 31) Virginia Wine Country Half Marathon. This race has plenty to offer, winding roads, hills and valleys, plenty of scenic vineyards to run through and a lot of champagne to enjoy at the end of your race.

Another great race that is even closer to home is the Farmatholon that is on July 19th this year at Maize Valley Winery in Hartville, Ohio. This is a great cross country race that covers approximately 3 miles or a 5K that has obstacles that are farm-themed. If you have ever heard of the Warrior Dash or other off-road “Mud Race” it is sort of similar to that. For instance they have included hay wagons, both large rounds and smaller square bales of hay, obstacles in the vineyard, logs, barrels, mud pits, farm creeks and more. For details, go to www.maizevalleywinery.com.

Finally one last race that I have to mention is the Geneva Grape Jamboree 5K in September. It’s an easy run, mostly flat ground but the finish at the Grape Jamboree festival is definitely a good motivator to cross the finish line.

 

Don’t forget Candlelight Winery is proud to be hosting a Food Truck Rally and Music Benefit for #Garrettsville Strong. The event will be held on Saturday, May 31st from 1-10pm! The Rolling Pig, Wholly Frijoles, Zydeco Bistro, Stone Pelican Rolling Cage and Premier Crepes will be serving their specialties all day while listening to local  musicians: Steve Vanderink (playing 1:30 – 3:30), The Usual Suspects (playing 4:30 – 6:30) and Steve Howell (playing 7:30 – 9:30).  Guests will have the opportunity to shop over 15 vendors, enter to win some great raffle prizes and so much more! A portion of the proceeds from the food trucks will be donated to #GarrettsvilleStrong as well as the money raised in the raffle drawings.

 

 

Amanda is the Co-Owner of Candlelight Winery located at 11325 Center Road, Garrettsville. For more gift ideas or wine lists from the winery, please visit www.candlelightwinery.com.

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.

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Payments Accepted:
Cash

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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.

 

Garrettsville - Sunday, May 18, 2014 was the BIG SHOW (Anybody remember Ed Sullivan?  Never mind). Opened with the High School Concert Band’s rendition of “The Star Spangled Banner” and proceeding through the presentations of the Intermediate School Fifth Grade Band, the Middle School Concert Band and the Intermediate School Sixth Grade Band to the big finish with the High School Concert Band, it was an excellent finale to the year in instrumental music.

The selections ranged from “Attack of the Slide Trombones” through “Old Time Rock & Roll”, a “Philharmonic Phun Phest” and “The Low Brass Brigade” by the younger musicians to “Disney at the Movies”(Surely fitting after the band’s trip to Disney this spring), “Flight of the Bumble Bee”(featuring  Nick Crawford, percussionist extraordinaire), an “Instant Concert” with iconic melodies from all over, “The Stars and Stripes Forever” with a somewhat steroidal piccolo contribution by tubist Michael Ebie and an absolutely lights-out number, “Voodoo”, a sonic tour de force  of jungle beats and hypnotic sounds—great stuff!  Finishing up the program was the Garfield “Fight Song” segueing into “Hang On, Sloopy” and a tremendous drum corps display of percussion mastery.

Congratulations to the directors,  Theo Cebulla and Joe Gaither, who have put together a music program everyone in the district can be proud of.  Thanks to all of the boosters and contributors whose time, efforts and patience  have helped to make it all possible.  Thanks to the musicians who have given it their all, all for a good cause.

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

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

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

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

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.

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

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Portage County - Area eighth-grade students have the opportunity to experience life as health professions students during MEDCAMP, a three-day intensive immersion experience for eighth graders who have demonstrated achievement in science and an interest in a health professions career.

Applicants are currently being sought to fill 50 openings for this year’s program, which will be held at Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED) July 17-19, 2014..

Now in its 24th year, MEDCAMP is designed to provide “hands-on” experiences in bio-medical science workshops involving research, clinical problem-solving and an introduction to the fields of clinical medicine and pharmacy. Students join physicians, pharmacists, NEOMED students, faculty and researchers in performing applied activities, where they learn how a physician talks with a patient, how to study the clues to a patient’s illness, to solve medical cases by using critical thinking skills in addition to learning modern laboratory techniques. Students also complete a case study on a fictitious patient.

Meals are provided. Accompanied by chaperones, students are transported by bus to a Kent State University dormitory for overnight accommodations. Tuition for the three-day experience is $125.. A limited number of tuition waivers are available for eligible students.

Applicants must be current eighth-grade students (will have completed eighth grade at the time of MEDCAMP), who excel in science and math. Potential participants may be nominated for the program by a teacher, guidance counselor or may nominate themselves. First consideration is given to applicants from groups underrepresented in health care professions. Students selected to participate in MEDCAMP must reside in Ashtabula, Carroll, Columbiana, Mahoning, Portage, Richland, Stark, Summit, Tuscarawas, Trumbull or Wayne Counties.

Information about MEDCAMP and applications may be found online at www.neomed.edu/academics/ahec/medcamp or by calling: 330.325.6584. Applications are due by April 18, 2014. MEDCAMP is sponsored by Ohio’s Region III Area Health Education Center (AHEC).

 

Middlefield – A new shop will soon open in Middlefield, notable not only for it’s distinct mix of products offered, but for the individuals who staff it. Upon entering the storefront, you may be greeted by Celeste, a friendly, hard-working store employee from the Metzenbaum Center, part of the Geauga County Board of Developmental Disabilities, who helps staff this unique store.

The shop will focus on selling an equal mix of handcrafts, and gently used treasures. Artisans from Metzenbaum will supply wood products, jewelry, key rings and handmade cards. Local artisans will also consign handmade items including woven wicker baskets, aprons, and pillow covers. Other inventory will include collectible glassware, pottery, toys, books, home items, magazines, and kids items. The shop is unable to accept upholstered furniture, clothes or shoes. Individuals are welcome to consign items, or simply donate gently used items. If any donations aren’t used at the store, they will be given to another local charitable organization.

In addition to greeting customers, some of Celeste’s tasks at Special Hands Shoppe will include checking in consigners, ringing out customers at the cash register, as well as setting up and helping to design display areas of the store. Celeste will work closely with Metzenbaum staff, including Debra Griggs. The goal is that the shop’s inventory will augment what is found in the local community. “We won’t sell items that would compete with nearby stores. We want our store to be a wonderful addition to the local community.” To that end, the shop is soliciting local artists, including Amish crafters, to provide a wide selection for local residents, visiting tourists, and tour groups.

In addition, Griggs and her team hope to work with residents on beneficial community projects. And that community spirit doesn’t stop with Griggs and her staff.  Consigner Martin Weaver, a local artisan, donated a tabletop wishing well to be kept near the cash register. His only request – that any loose change donated would benefit the Ronald McDonald House. So, if you’re looking for some good gift items, but you also want to do good for the community, visit Special Hands Shoppe in Middlefield. The store, located on West High Street near Dollar General and Roadhouse Music, won’t officially open until Memorial Day. Local artists and consigners are encouraged to contact Debra at dgriggs@geaugadd.org or (440) 632-0659 to schedule an appointment.

Geauga County Board of Developmental Disabilities, known as The Bessie Benner Metzenbaum Center, was started in 1966 to help individuals in Geauga County with developmental disabilities. As of January 2014, they serve over 725 individuals and their families with community-based therapies, day-programming, residential services, and transportation. For more information, visit geaugadd.org.

 

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

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

Mantua – For the fourth year in a row, lively literacy takes Crestwood Intermediate students well beyond the pages of a book. At least as far as Canton, Ohio, to the Military Aviation Preservation Society (MAPS) museum. That’s where students and staff recently visited, as a part of the fourth annual One Book, One School program, and thanks to a generous grant from the Hiram Community Trust. Although the students didn’t see a B-17 like the one in the book, “On the Wings of Heroes,” that the entire school is reading, they had the opportunity to meet veterans who did. One such individual is WWII veteran Ralph Lynn, who flew 32 missions during the war. Lynn, who is now 94 years old, serves as a tour guide at the museum, where the leather bomber jacket he wore during those missions is now on display. He served as a guide for several groups of Crestwood students, leading them through the museum’s aircraft and displays.

Lynn has a good deal of experience sharing the MAPS museum with older folks like himself, who lived through that time.  However, he noted the difficulty he sometimes has in sharing his experiences with younger children with little knowledge of that time. Since the Crestwood students were currently learning about the war through the One Book, One School program, Lynn was able to, “add a little more meat to what they’ve read,” and give them a more real picture of those who served.

While at the MAPS museum, students had the opportunity to climb aboard a C-41 plane to learn how troops may have felt as they prepared to invade Normandy, or see a variety of aircraft on display and under restoration, including a MiG-17, B-26 Marauder, and AH-1 Cobra aircrafts. They also had the opportunity to climb aboard a Goodyear GZ-22 Blimp Gondola. In addition, groups had the opportunity to tour a ‘MASH’ era field hospital; similar to the one museum guide Ted Mathies served at as a medic in Viet Nam. Within the one tent on display, Mathies explained how soldiers could receive treatment for minor discomforts like a sore throats or cavities, to major surgeries like amputations, removing shrapnel, or, “putting your nose back on your face.”

Mathies shared that a 200-bed field hospital’s 27 tents can be set up in 24 hours anywhere in the world. He encouraged visitors to handle the instruments, tools, and equipment, and ask lots of questions. When asked about an odd-looking canvas bag with a hanging loop on top, and watering can sprinkler at the bottom, he explained to shocked students how to use a field shower, explaining, “If you wanted privacy, you’d have to close your eyes.”

MAPS museum literature notes that, “History was not made by airplanes, but by the men and women who designed, build and flew them.” As such, students had the opportunity to experience aviation up close through a tour of the museum’s Gallery of Heroes. They saw artifacts, learned about the men and women who served during the war, and saw a piece of the USS Arizona, sunk by the Japanese at Pearl Harbor.

As we stood under the 1908 Martin Glider, Ralph Lynn remarked excitedly, “Look how far we’ve come in 100 years,” noting the development from a simple wood and canvas glider to high-tech machines for travel to the moon. “I’d love to be around to see how far we can come in the next 100 years,” he concluded.

So what did students think of their experience at MAPS? Kylie, a fourth-grader, liked the opportunity to go inside a plane to find out what it’s like to be a paratrooper, like her father. Her classmate Jackson, an automotive enthusiast, added, “I liked viewing the planes, and trying to identify the different parts.”  For more information on the MAPS museum, visit www.mapsmuseum.org.

Back at Crestwood Intermediate, students have their own mini-museum. “It’s just amazing that all this came out of a book,” marvels Crestwood Intermediate guidance counselor Gary Traveny, as he looks around the darkened classroom. The classroom-turned-memorabilia museum is filled with photographs, uniforms, artifacts, and multimedia materials about the Second World War, on loan from community members. The temporary exhibit was compiled to augment the special month-long ‘One Book, One School’ program at CIS. The featured book, ‘On the Wings of Heroes,’ by Richard Peck, is the story of a young boy, and his brother who flies B-17s during World War II.

As you enter CIS, and come face-to-face with a vintage Army Jeep®, you know that the school is entranced with  the book. The entire school — roughly 400 students and staff from grades three through five – has been reading the book, and they have toured the exhibit to study the materials, and learn what individuals  from this generation experienced in the WWII. Through the exhibit, students had the opportunity to hear a recording of the Andrews Sisters singing “Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” and see a video clip of Kate Smith singing Irving Berlin’s “God Bless America.”

They heard the amazing, true story of Nicholas Winton, a stockbroker from London, who saved 669 Jewish children from death at the hands of the Nazis in Czechoslovakia. Students were surprised to learn how the British version of the Monopoly board game was used to help troops shot down in Germany escape POW camps.  Through the interpretive classroom, students saw German and Japanese memorabilia, as well as a copy of the August 14, 1945 Akron Beacon Journal newspaper noting the end of the war in the Pacific. The materials are on loan from private collectors including the Tayerle family, Mr. Delcalzo, the Marusiak Family, Mrs. Krupar and Mr. Traveny.

This year, CIS students are supporting the National Museum of the U.S. Army through the purchase of personalized dog tags. In addition, students and community members have the opportunity to register an Army veteran through a soldier registry at no charge. Soldiers registered through this program will be included in an exhibit at the National Museum of the U.S. Army in Virginia. During past One Book, One School programs, CIS has supported the Flight 93 Memorial, provided Vermont Teddy Bears to Akron Children’s Hospital, and supplied books to an elementary school in Akron through the First Book organization.

The month-long program concludes at 9 am on Friday, May 23rd, when a plaque will be installed to honor Adam Hamilton, the brother of Crestwood student Nick Kreston. Hamilton was killed while serving in Afghanistan four years ago. The plaque will be placed near a tree that was planted in Hamilton’s honor shortly after his death. After the brief ceremony, students and staff will participate in a jalopy parade, featuring area veterans. For more information on the program, contact Gary Traveny at Crestwood Primary, (330) 357-8203.

 

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Attention teens! Would you like to honor and serve America? Do you want to prepare for your future while making new friends? Then rise to the challenge of cadet membership in the U.S. Air Force Auxiliary, Civil Air Patrol.

This program is also an impressive qualification for those considering college.

Cadets fly, learn to lead, hike, camp, get in shape, and push themselves to new limits. If you’re dreaming about a career in aviation, space, or the military, CAP’s Cadet Program is for you.

To become a cadet, you must be be at least 12 years old and not yet 19 years old.  Cadets meet 2 hours per week and one Saturday per month, on average, and also have opportunities to attend leadership encampments, career academies, and other activities during the summer.

For more information contact Captain Paul Heacox via email at paul.heacox@oh.wg.cap.gov

 

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 – Less than a year since taking over the medical practice of retired family physician Sang Leu and his successor, Dr. Armelle Jemmy-Nouafo, Dr. Timothy Neely has a brand-new office.  With more than twice the floor space than the previous location, it gives Dr. Neely the capability to offer local patients more than twice the medical services available as before.

DrNeelyDr. Neely, DO,  established his family practice last August at Garrettsville Family Medicine, located in Sky Plaza on Windham Street, where Dr. Leu had practiced family medicine for 37 years. But the cramped and outdated facility constricted Dr. Neely’s ability to offer more than basic services, primarily for adult and geriatric care.

So he enthusiastically pursued University Hospital’s plan to find a suitable new location for the family practice, which would allow him to provide new medical services for under-represented demographics. That location is the site of the former Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge dealership owned by the Kepich’s,  just around the corner from Main Street, which had been sitting vacant for several years before renovations began in late 2013.

By March 31, 2014, Dr. Neely opened the doors of his new-and-improved practice at 10724 South Street. The handicap-accessible facility features six examination rooms (up from 2.5 at the previous location), including a room for making osteopathic adjustments, a pediatric exam room, and a women’s health room for gynecological exams. There is also an in-house lab for blood and urine tests, strep and flu swabs, spirometry, Coumadin checks and other labwork.

Another new feature is the Virtual Concierge, which connects a patient to a referred specialist for scheduling of further testing or surgical procedures before leaving Dr. Neely’s office via FaceTime video messaging.

Dr. Neely plans to add an immunization program and nursing home visitations soon. To top it off, a nurse practitioner is joining the practice to meet the increased demand by mid-June.

This widening menu of health care options for the entire family is what Dr. Neely had in mind when he first established his practice last August. As an osteopathic doctor, he has a holistic approach to medicine, addressing the physical, mental and spiritual aspects of the patient. While licensed to prescribe pharmaceuticals to treat medical conditions like an MD, osteopathic doctors are also licensed to manipulate the musculo-skeletal system, bringing muscle and bone into alignment, allowing the body to function optimally and hasten its own healing process.

New hours at Garrettsville Family Medicine are now: 8am-5pm Mondays; 10am-7pm Tuesdays, 8am-1pm Wednesdays, 8am-5pm Thursdays, and 7am-3pm Fridays. Dr. Neely is still accepting new patients. To make an appointment, call (330) 527-2617 or request an appointment at www.uhhospitals.org. Stay tuned for an upcoming open house at the new location this summer.

 

Garrettsville - The Friends of the Garrettsville Library (PCDL) met recently—May 13—to confirm the dates of the next Big Book Sale, which will be held from June 16 to June21.  Monday , June 16 from 4:00 to 7:00 will be the Preview Event for Friends members ( to pick up hot titles on their must-read lists).  The public can rush in to get the juicy remainders on Tuesday from 11:00 to 7:00, Wednesday from 10:00 to 6:00, Thursday—closed, Friday from 10:00 to 6:00 and Saturday from 9:00 to noon.  It all gets packed away on Saturday from noon to 5:00 and goes to that Big Bookseller in the Sky.  If you are a member of the Friends, feel free to come in and volunteer, get scheduled for this regular fund-raiser.  If you’re not a member, feel free to sign up now.  The more, themerrier.

Friends of the Library T-shirts will be available this summer, for regular patrons of the library—and shouldn’t we all be—and especially for the participants in the popular summer programs.  The theme for these programs will be : “FIZZ ** BOOM  **READ” !!!  Sounds like a science focus.  Come see.  Check them out.

There are still Friends cookbooks available; they make great gifts and remembrances for family members and cooks of all sorts.  The May garden-themed raffle is winding down (You can still get in on the chances) but a new one for October will be organized around fall reading.  And, just in case you’ve missed it, there is a continuous book sale going on at the library so no one has to wait all year for the Big Book Sale.  Bargains galore!

The Friends of the Garrettsville Library (PCDL) will have their next regular meeting on August 12 at 5:30 p.m. at the library.   Good cause…short meetings…what’s not to like?

 

Mantua - Memorial Day is the time set aside to remember the men and women who died while serving in U.S Armed Forces. And from that day forward, local veterans Roy Mayfield, Jessie Crate, Jim Aldrich, Bud Foster, and a host of others will finally have a local place to honor and remember those they served with who have passed on, and those who did not make it home.

Local veterans Bud Foster, Kathleen Miller (wife of veteran Earl Miller), Jim Aldrich, Roy Mayfield, and Jesse Crate at the newly completed Veteran’s Memorial. The memorial is located at the corner of State Route 82 and Mantua Center Road in Mantua Township. The Memorial will be dedicated at noon on Memorial Day, May 26th, immediately following the community parade.

Local veterans Bud Foster, Kathleen Miller (wife of veteran Earl Miller), Jim Aldrich, Roy Mayfield, and Jesse Crate at the newly completed Veteran’s Memorial. The memorial is located at the corner of State Route 82 and Mantua Center Road in Mantua Township. The Memorial will be dedicated at noon on Memorial Day, May 26th, immediately following the community parade.

While the need and desire for a local monument honoring those who have served has never been in question, the location has been a topic of discussion since it was first suggested in 2001. Various sites were considered before the current site was selected twelve years later. And thanks to private donations of time, supplies and money, the Veteran’s Memorial is now complete. The Memorial is situated on the green in the Mantua Historic District, a location that has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1974.

According to Army veteran Bud Foster, who designed the Memorial, it’s been a dream he’s held to tightly over the past nine years. Before her passing, his wife, Rose, told him, “Don’t give up on the battle.” Perhaps that’s just one more reason Foster visits the Memorial, situated near his home, every night. “We wanted to place the Memorial where people would see it all the time,” Foster concluded. Steve Zielinski, who served in the Navy, shared his desire to honor those friends and family members who served in the Armed Forces. Having a memorial here, he states, “is a good thing.”

Eileen Kinter, member of the Ladies Auxiliary, commented, “When we see the memorial, it helps to remind us of all those brave men and women who served, but are no longer with us. It’s great to have something here in Mantua.” Kathleen Miller’s late husband Earl served in WWII as part of the 77th Infantry Mr. Miller was part of the initial committee planning to create a memorial in Mantua. She acknowledged, “Any time you can recognize veterans and their service is a beautiful time.” Miller currently serves as Chaplain of the Ladies Auxiliary of VFW Post 193.

“With over a thousand veterans from our small area, spanning from the Revolutionary war to today, it’s great to have a place for families to pay their respects,” shared Tim Benner. Benner’s father served in the Korean War, earning a purple heart. When Benner took his mother to the Memorial recently, he recalls, it brought tears to her eyes. “It’s beautiful,” she said.

The Veteran’s Memorial will be dedicated on Monday, May 26, 2014 12:00 p.m., immediately following the Memorial Day parade and ceremony at West Lawn Cemetery. Guest Speakers include Bud Foster and Scott Hamilton, the father of Adam Hamilton, a local soldier who lost his life while serving in Afghanistan. Father Michael Garvey of Saint Joseph’s Parish will conduct the invocation and benediction. Garvey is also a veteran. Kathleen Miller will sing the National Anthem, and American Legion Post 193 will facilitate a 21-gun salute and the playing of Taps. After the dedication, the Town Hall and Historical Society Museum will be open to the public. Everyone is encouraged to attend.

 

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Garrettsville – There’s been, understandably, a bit of increased interest as of late for materials at the library involving historic downtown Garrettsville’s main street of buildings. One such request is that of copies of the movie The Year That Trembled which was filmed thirteen years ago at locations around the area. A few prominent scenes feature the characters mingling on the street and the camera frames include glimpses of the hardware store and nearby shops that were recently lost on an afternoon that closed down that section of town and caused curious and concerned passersby to stop and observe for a while.

Actress Meredith Monroe (best known most recently as Hotch's wife on Criminal Minds) and me after we wrapped filming.

Actress Meredith Monroe (best known most recently as Hotch’s wife on Criminal Minds) and me after we wrapped filming.

Back in the summer of 2001, the same section of town was closed down for a different reason, causing curious and excited passersby to stop and observe for a while. Those who were in the vicinity at that time would remember film crews, directors, make-up artists, hairstylists, and the other various human moving parts needed to make a movie set successful crowding onto the sidewalks and going about their tasks as though they were as normal an occurrence as the usual commuters puttering by on their ordinary-day way to restaurants, shops and offices. Famous faces plucked straight from Hollywood completed the landscape, stepping in to their designated spots once the lighting and camera positioning was finally just perfect for them to most effectively deliver their lines according to the filmmaker’s vision. And, just as memorable, of course, is the contained excitement of the local townspeople patiently observing the action from behind the roped-off areas.

But a lucky few, including this writer, had the opportunity to get in on the action and rub elbows with the actors, interacting with them on screen as lineless extras filling in the backdrop around the central performers.

The summer after my freshman year of college, I came home during the break between semesters looking forward to relaxing and catching up on the “read for fun” booklist I’d been compiling throughout the year. But an invitation in the newspaper announcing an open casting call in search of local citizens to appear in a movie, set at nearby Kent State University in the not-so-nearby 1970s, sounded too intriguing to overlook and swiftly deposited that list to the back of my mind. Not too long after I attended the casting call in person, informal headshot and brief bio in hand, my phone rang with the voice of a casting assistant letting me know that I had been chosen for several scenes and giving me details on when and where I was to report for my call times as well as what to wear. Though the principle actors had the assistance of the wardrobe department, we had to dress the part ourselves and were told a few guidelines for appearing on screen such as how the color red is difficult to read properly on camera while white clothes won’t “pop” well. Since it was a historical piece we also had to choose clothes appropriate to that time period which, thankfully, was remarkably easy for me due to a recent trend in retro styles. We were encouraged to shop at thrift stores which may have older clothes ready for the finding, but one stop in a family member’s well-stored trunk and I had several vintage choices at my fingertips. The one problem was that I was not quite the right size to fit into those wonderful options so we had to get creative. My favorite find was a pair of genuine bellbottoms, dark blue denim with beautifully-embroidered back pockets, but alas, they were too small for my 21st century frame so we cut the flowery panels off the jeans and stitched them to a pair of my contemporary counterparts. The slight flare of the modern bootleg invoked the older style just enough and at least the backside was authentic! With present-day replicas of a blue peasant blouse, kerchief hair accessory and Birkenstocks completing my summery 1970s college look, I successfully made it through the costumer’s careful inspection with a stamp of approval or, in this case and more importantly, permission to continue to the set.

What happened once I fell into step with the silver screen celebrities? Tune in next week for this adventure’s exciting sequel!

 

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Windham - Windham Library is pleased to announce the winners of the National Library Week contest, “Guess how many books are in Windham Library”. Zachary Clemente won the adult basket and Jacob Tucker was the winner of the kid’s basket.  Congratulations to both lucky winners!

For more information, call the Windham Library at 330-326-3145.  The library, located at 9005 Wilverne Drive, is open Monday and Friday, 10:00 am-4:00 pm; Tuesday and Thursday, 12:00 pm-6:30 pm; and closed on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Newton Falls – In observance of Mothers Day, Newton’s Apples Childcare & Learning Center invited their Mommies to attend a special “Mommies & Muffins” reception to celebrate and honor their Mothers. This is the 6th year that Newton’s Apples has invited their Mommies to attend this special event.

The children of Newton’s Apples celebrated their Mothers on Friday, May 9. During a special program each child got to tell all in attendance why their mother was special. Each Mother was then presented with a special gift made by the child especially for them.

The Mothers were treated to a special Mothers Day song by the children. Finally each Mother got to tour the Center with their child to get a small glimpse into the child’s daily activities at Newton’s Apples.

For further information, phone (330) 872-3422, or e-mail NewtonsApples@yahoo.com.

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Portage County - On April 30th United Way and Portage Learning Center’s Head Start joined forces to expand United Way’s Reading Role Models program.  Local volunteers from AMETEK, Kent State University and Smithers-Oasis spent time with 16 Head Start classes and more than 250 students across Portage County to help them strengthen their language and literacy skills.  United Way President & CEO Brian Duchon said “The Head Start Program is an important program for children from low-income families.  These children are at greater risk of falling behind in school so the Reading Role Models program was a natural fit aimed at improving these kids reading skills and ensuring that these kids enter kindergarten with the skills they need to succeed.”  Reading Role Models are community and corporate volunteers who participate in regularly scheduled reading days at early learning centers, community centers and schools across Portage County.  For more information or to sign up to be a Reading Role Model please visit www.volunteerportage.org.

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Kent – The Kent Community TimeBank invites guests to “Let the Sun Shine In” on Friday May 23 from 5:30 to 7:30 at the Kent Historical Society Museum, 237 E. Main St. Kent, Ohio. For $20 admission, attendees receive an advanced preview of the Museum’s new exhibit, “Fun in the Summertime.” The display features relics from Ohio amusement parks, including the Brady Lake Amusement Park. Park-themed refreshments, finger foods, and beer or wine are also included with ticket purchase. All money raised will benefit the Kent Community TimeBank to pay software fees, real space, and other expenses. The event also features musical performances by singer and songwriter Hal Walker, voted “Best Musician” 2010 and 2011 by Scene Magazine. Also entertaining the crowd will be Brad Bolton, local guitarist with a diverse musical background, accompanied by Christie Anderson. Fundraising for the TimeBank continues with a 50/50 Raffle and a Silent Auction including items from Kent’s own businesses. Tickets are for sale now: online at http://crookedriver.timebanks.org/page/fundraiser-tickets; at the hOur Share Exchange Center, 223 N. Water St.; and at WordSmiths, 402 E. Main Street. The Kent Community TimeBank, formed in 2010, is a community-building program where members exchange skills, talents and passions using Time Credits to record transactions. Offers, requests, and transactions are kept on the Crooked River Alliance of TimeBanks’ software. The fundraising team, musicians, The Kent Historical Society and WordSmiths are  TimeBank members. For more information or to join your local TimeBank as an individual or business, go to http://crookedriver.timebanks.org.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

Hiram – Recently, roughly 2,000 high school seniors from 16 area schools arrived on the Hiram College campus. The students weren’t there en masse for a college visit or orientation opportunity, but for a serious lesson to guide them in making good decisions during the upcoming prom and graduation season.

As students arrived, they encountered a mock crash scene in the parking lot. Area fire trucks, an ambulance and EMS crews from several cities aided “victims” who were trapped inside the twisted wreckage. The graphic scene served to grab students’ attention, and served to set the stage for the rest of the morning’s events. But the purpose wasn’t to simply to show students a shocking scene. “The goal is to reduce teenage fatalities, especially during prom and graduation season,” said Lynette Basiman, Director of Portage County Safe Communities.

The None Under 21 program focuses on the simple choices students can make today, to avoid the very real consequences from drunk or distracted driving. As the program began, Hiram President Thomas Chema addressed the teens, sharing that in 2006, two of Hiram’s students were killed and another was severely injured when a drunk driver struck the car in which they were riding.

A father, Marc Streem, shared the loss of his youngest son, Ryan, a student at Rootstown. Ryan lost his life at the age of 14 in a motor vehicle accident. Next, college student and survivor of a drunk-driving crash, Melinda Mason, shared the experience and recovery. Mason began speaking publically after being hit by a drunk driver in April of 2013. Lastly, students listened as convicted felon, Aaron Cooksey, the man responsible for killing his best friend, recalls the choice he made to drink and drive, and the burden of the consequences he must continue to bear.

At the close of the program, students are directed through the “Walk of Remembrance,” an emotional tribute to local families who have lost loved ones due to traffic-related crashes. As students quietly walk through the hallway, they pause to see family members standing in tribute to loved ones they have lost. This year’s walk of remembrance honored Brad Bauer, Teresa Conti, Emily Goldsmith, Christopher Graves, Russ Wanchick, Joseph Nirchl, Donovan Svab, Ada Van Horn, Ryan Streem, Grace Chamberlain and Andy Hopkins.

Even though a mock crash scene greeted them at the start of the program, by the event conclusion, students have no doubt of the real losses that can result from poor choices. Moved by the program, many students shed tears, with some offering hugs or handshakes to families of victims as they made their way through the Walk of Remembrance.

According to Hiram Village Police Chief Ed Samec, “None 4 Under 21 hits hard! The students hear REAL LIFE stories and they feel the emotions from the presenters. The Walk of Remembrance has substantial impacts on the students. They look at the pictures and then look into the eyes of the family members standing next to the pictures. They see the heartbreak in the eyes of the family members and it’s a hard reality that this is for REAL!”

Prior to the event, one of the sponsors, Elk & Elk, challenged each school to create a banner containing a message related to the event. The winning team from Newton Falls High School won $2,000 to help fund alcohol-free prom and graduation activities at their school. A check for $1,000 went to the second place team from Windham High School.

The following sponsors made this year’s None 4 Under 21 program possible: the Ohio Troopers Coalition; the law firm of Elk & Elk; Jason Durica, Allstate Insurance; Hughes Event Production Services; Wood Kortright Borkoski Funeral Home; Portage Granite & Marble; Portage County Prosecutor Victor Vigluicci; Gateway Towing & Recovery; Hiram College; the Aurora Schools Foundation and the Fraternal Order of Police.

Garrettsville - The James A. Garfield Marching Pride has been having a spring banquet since the year 2000 and this year was no exception, a great evening of awards and recognition…and some pretty fair food, prepared by Guido’s Catering and presented through the good offices of Marianne Norris and Dorothy Sheller.  And it was another occasion where rank has its privileges—the seniors got to go first through the buffet line.  Faculty and administration got demoted to coming through last.The Middle School jazz band, the Jammin’ G-Men and the High School jazz band, the Big Swing Machine, provided music for the preliminary “meet-n-greet” time but everyone got to the gold-covered tables with their gold-colored plates in time to enjoy the meal…and the cakes!

The awards table was full of items to be handed out—blankets, medals, patches, letters, caps, pins, umbrellas, fancy bags with mysterious contents.  The dining tables were full of band members, parents, grandparents, siblings and even some miscellaneous alumni band people.  The awards went out after the band directors, Theo Cebulla and Joe Gaither, took a few moments thanking  the many booster members who had made such great contributions to making 2013-2014such a great year for the Marching Pride.  The Mesdames Curry, Crawford, Everett, Hoffman and Jones headed up the Band Boosters operations for such necessary considerations as chaperonage, travel, uniform maintenance and fund-raising.

National award winners were announced : Junior Arion Service—Nick Crawford, Semper Fidelis—Dan Anders, Patrick S. Gilmore—Andy Lininger, John Philip Sousa—Michael Ebie.  The local Leanne Brosius-Osbourne Scholarship winner will be announced at the annual honors ceremonies on May 28.

The photo-ops were many and varied, as were the images presented in the senior video show and individual awards.  The 2013-2014 band officers were recognized and  officers for 2014-2015 were announced.  The evening’s program detailed the activities throughout the year and the seniors gave a behind-the-scenes look at very many of them .

And they’re ready to do it all again next year.

Go, G-Men!

 

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Burton - The Geauga County Historical Society Century Village Museum in Burton is sponsoring a festive Memorial Day weekend Rib Burn Off at the Museum.  The event is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, May 24 and 25 from 12:00 to 8:00, rain or shine, just off the square in Burton.  So, Bring YOUR party to OUR party and you won’t have any work to do at home to entertain for the holidays!

Several featured rib vendors such as Blazin’ Bills, Eli’s Ribs from Warren, Stewart’s Smokin’ Backyard BBQ from Kirtland, and Dickey’s BBQ and Old Carolina BBQ both from Mentor will be cooking their delicious ribs and pulled pork sandwiches.  You will be able to buy ribs by the bone or by the dinner . . . taste them all!  After tasting, you will be able to vote for your favorite in the “People’s Choice Award” which will be presented to the winning vendor.

Other events include a classic car showing, craft show, pony rides, hobby train ride, kids’ game, and other featured events.

Under the tent, live music will be going on all day, courtesy of Preston Superstore.  On Saturday from 2 to 4, enjoy Fletch & The Catch; from 4 to 6, the Geauga Highlanders will perform, and from 6 to 8 the lively music of the Ted Riser Band will fill the park.  On Sunday, from 2 to 4, 2Guys12Strings will entertain, and from 4 to 6, the group Blue Lunch will round out the music groups.

Bring your family and friends to a great entertaining event.  There is no admission charge and parking is free.    For more information, call 440-834-1492.

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Portage County - The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP) enables low income TANF-eligible Portage County youth to gain valuable work experience, while earning a paycheck.

In order to be eligible, youth must be a resident of Portage County, between the ages of 16 and 24, have a minor child in the household (if they are 18 or older), and meet TANF income guidelines and other eligibility requirements.

Eligible youth will be provided a list of worksites located throughout Portage County to contact for an interview(s) in a wide variety of jobs ranging from receptionist, child care, landscaping, maintenance/laborer, office clerk, food service, animal caregiver, farmworker, and many more. The worksites will make a selection from the summer youth participants they interviewed. Participants can interview at more than one site.

The program runs from June 1, 2014 to August 31, 2014. Applications are available and can be picked up at the PCJFS 2nd floor lobby or OhioMeansJobs room 134 located at 449 South Meridian Street, in Ravenna. Hours are Monday-Friday from 8:00 AM to 4:15 PM. Applications will also be available online at http://www.co.portage.oh.us/jfs/index.html.

Call to schedule an appointment to review your eligibility.

Any questions please direct them toward Helene Leightner (330)297-3763 LEIGHH@odjfs.state.oh.us

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Garrettsville-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.

 

Windham – The WVFD Joint Fire Board met on May 8th with one board member excused from the meeting. The board approved the minutes from the April meeting, the bank reconciliation and the expenditures.

Chief Mike Iwanyckyj stated that the WVFD was turned down for the Fire Marshall’s Grant, but were still in the running for the FEMA Grant. The chief also reported that the computer system will have to be switched over to EMS Charts. This system will allow all the reports to go directly to the billing company rather than the fiscal officer sending the information over.  He also reported that fire trucks 2811 and 2816 were repaired, truck 2815 need a shifter cable and has a minor electrical problem which is being repaired by John Sedensky in Nelson. Iwanyckyj also reported that he is working on the Mavis system for Camp Ravenna since the department has been contracted to cover the Trumbull County portion of the camp as well as the Portage County side of the camp.

In other board news, the board agreed to purchase a laptop for the chief’s use and a debit card for the fiscal officer to use. He also announced that the trucks were ready for the Memorial Day Parade.

Lastly, they held a discussion on Mark Finamore’s opinion on the dispatching contract with the village. Due to a lack of quorum of eligible board members to vote on the issue no decision was made. The three members that are eligible to make a decision on the issue were not all in attendance at the meeting. Deb Blewett  and Dann Timmons cannot vote on the issue, since they both have conflicts of interest.

With no other business to discuss the meeting was adjourned.

 

Garrettsville – The Garfield Cheerleaders are kicking off their upcoming cheer season with a mulch fundraiser. 100% of the proceeds go to the cheer program to help support competition fees, camp costs, and spirit supplies.

Gallagher's Mulch Fundraiser Garfield Schools

Pictured left to right are GHS Cheerleaders Courtney and Mikaela Siracki are ready to take your mulch orders with GHS alumni, Dan and Tyler Gallagher of Gallagher Farms Mulch and Sawdust

Purchase quality bulk mulch for your landscaping needs from your local GHS Cheerleader or call Coach Shannon Gallagher at 330-842-0015 to pre-order your mulch.

Choose from double ground bark mulch for $23 a yard or dyed mulch for $28 a yard, (black, red, or dark brown.) There is a 3 yard minimum plus a $20 delivery fee. Small yard? No problem! Split a load with your neighbor.

Mulch is supplied by Garfield Alumni, Dan and Tyler Gallagher of Gallagher Farms Mulch and Sawdust. They are pleased to support GHS and the Garfield Cheerleaders.

Thank you in advance for supporting the Garfield cheer program! *\o/* Go-G-Men!

Mantua – For the 10th consecutive year, the Crestwood Outdoor Education Committee held an Earth Day festival at the Crestwood Primary School. While Mother Nature made it difficult to hold the festivities outside, holding the event indoors didn’t hamper the success of the evening’s event.

Aided by parent volunteers, as well as those from Crestwood Middle and High Schools, the event featured twenty earth-friendly stations for students and their families to enjoy. Habitat hikes were held outdoors, and stations offered a variety of hands-on activities and fun for all ages.  Families enjoyed giveaways like tree seedlings and sunflower seed planters, and gained  access to plant and animal facts and expertise from area naturalists, master gardeners, and wildlife experts.

Kids enjoyed speaking to beekeepers, learning about rocks, and finding out where storm water flows. They also enjoyed face painting and crafts like making radish seed necklaces. But the high point for many was the owl craft, where children and adults had the opportunity to make a simple art piece from reclaimed barn wood, leather scraps, and other odds and ends. The wood for the ‘barn owls’ was provided by the Stamm family.

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

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

And refreshments, of course.

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Portage County – On Friday, April 25, 2014, at NEOMED’s Ralph Regula Conference Center there was a swirl of competitiveness at this year’s 23rd annual Portage County Literacy Coalition Spelling Bee.

spelling-beeIn the beginning of the Bee, the teams:  Community Action Council of Ravenna, Deluxe, Inc. of Streetsboro; NEOMED of Rootstown; and the Mavericks were battling for a victory.   Each team didn’t give up the bout, but held on tight and continued spelling word after word.  The tension rose as the teams clashed for the yearly PCLC Spelling Bee trophy.  Words like:  “Blatherskite,” “crepuscular,” and “per diem” were spelled.  It was a struggle to the very end and finally it was down to two teams.

After 16 years of competing in the Portage County Literacy Coalition’s Spelling Bee, this year’s trophy was finally won by NEOMED of Rootstown.  We congratulate Debbie Myers, Bryan Zeppernick, and Theresa “Terry” Schoettler of Team NEOMED for finally achieving the win.   Also, we would like to note a gracious recognition to Gail Hansen and Jean Spain from NEOMED that were unable to make it to the Bee.

We would like to thank all of the area businesses that took part in this year’s Spelling Bee and also to those who generously donated items.  Because of all our community partners the PCLC Spelling Bee was a success.

The Portage County Literacy Coalition is a non-profit that raises literacy awareness in Portage County and supports the Adult Basic and Literacy Education Program at Maplewood Career Center.  All money raised from the PCLC Spelling Bee goes towards materials and scholarships for those achieving their GED.  The PCLC welcomes volunteers and new board members.  If you are interested in finding out more about the Portage County Literacy Coalition, please call (330) 235-0020.

 

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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.