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Garrettsville - Timing is everything.

Volunteers help sort and stock donations at the Nelson Garrettsville Community Cupboard.

Volunteers help sort and stock donations at the Nelson Garrettsville Community Cupboard.

For the Nelson-Garrettsville Community Cupboard (NGCC), a $10,000 grant from MassMutual couldn’t have come at a better time. The non-profit food bank has been working to re-establish itself since the March 22 fire which wiped out its former location and one-third of Garrettsville’s downtown business district.

Chris Perme — a Garrettsville financial planner who operates Perme Financial Group from 8133 Windham Street and also serves on the advisory board of the NGCC — applied for the grant just days after the devastating fire.

“MassMutual offers 11 grants per year, and I’ve applied for them in the past but never was awarded one,” Perme says. “This application deadline was March 30. With the devastation of the fire still fresh on my mind, I think my sense of urgency came through in my application.”

The NGCC will receive its grant at the same time Perme will be awarded the Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company’s prestigious Community Service Gold Award, which recognizes field associates who are making an exceptional difference in their community. Perme was selected for the award based on his ‘outstanding volunteer commitment and community service efforts with the NGCC, an agency member of Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank. The award and grant will be presented during MassMutual’s 2014 Leaders’ Conference in August in California.

Perme is not a traditional volunteer, but is involved in fundraising, marketing, long-term financial planning and budgeting; influencing the growth, development and awareness of NGCC.

Perme is grateful that this MassMutual grant represents one of the largest single gifts the Community Cupboard has ever received and recognizes it will help the NGCC to become self-sufficient and better able to serve the hungry over the long term. Added to donations from tremendous community support, the funding will contribute toward replacing food, shelving, refrigerators, freezers and office equipment that were all lost in the fire.

“The generosity of this gift also lifts some of the short-term pressure off our organization,” he said. “It’s allowing us to think beyond survival, to take a longer term view and ensuring the food cupboard’s longevity as a lasting service to those in need. Now we can grow and develop for the next 50 years, instead of thinking month to month or year to year.”

Mike Elias, co-founder of NGCC, recognizes that this gift offers great encouragement to the organization’s volunteers, who have “worked tirelessly as a team over the past two-and-a-half years, and especially in the past three months, to establish the Cupboard.”

The NGCC, which has operated from several locations throughout Nelson and Garrettsville since 2012, had moved to the Buckeye Block of downtown Garrettsville just months before it was leveled by fire. It is now operating from 12157 State Route 88 (near the former Bil-Mar turkey farm). Regular hours of operation are Monday, 3-6pm and Wednesday, 9am-12 noon.

Expressing an intention is to move back to Garrettsville once rebuilding is complete, Elias said, “Our location in the Buckeye Block on Center Street was perfect for NGCC. We were happy to be part of Main Street’s business community, and being located near the PARTA Transportation line was a great convenience for our clients. It is our hope that a spot can be found for the Cupboard as the rebuilding efforts get under way.”

In its short history, the food outreach has assisted more than 245 families. Currently, approximately 660 residents are using the food cupboard; over 50% of them children and senior citizens — and the need is increasing. Since its inception, the NGCC has distributed more than 64,500 items of food. More than one in seven Ohio households are reportedly facing a daily risk of hunger or are considered ‘food insecure’ — an increase of 71,000 households over last year.

Needless to say, there’s no time like the present to ‘shut the door on hunger;’ the mission statement of the Nelson-Garrettsville Community Cupboard.

 

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Garrettsville Summerfest

June 28, 2014 at 10:00 p.m.

Downtown Garrettsville

 

Hiram 4th of July

July 3, 2014 at 9:30pm

Hiram College Football Field

Hiram, Ohio 44234

 

Aurora Fourth of July Fireworks

July 4, 2014 at 9:45pm

West Pioneer Trail Ball Fields

Aurora, Ohio 44202

 

Woodside Lake Park Fireworks

July 5, 2014 at 9:00pm

Woodside Lake Park

2486 Frost Road, Streetsboro, Ohio 44241

 

Kent Heritage Festival

July 5, 2014 at 10:00pm

Downtown Kent,

Mogadore Road, Kent, Ohio 44240

 

Newton Falls Fireworks

July 4, 2014 at 10:00pm

City Park, 52 East Quarry Street

Newton Falls, Ohio 44444

 

Packard Music Hall Fireworks

July 4, 2014 at Dusk

Packard Music Hall

1703 Mahoning Ave NW,  Warren, Ohio 44483

 

Portage Lakes Fireworks

July 5, 2014; 10pm *Rain Date July 6

Portage Lakes Ohio

 

Burton Community Fireworks

July 4, 2014 at Dusk

Geauga County Fairgrounds

14373 N Cheshire St., Burton, Ohio 44021

 

HFD Assistant Chief Mark Kozak welcomed Firefighter/EMTs Austin Grube and Jason Dailey to the Hiram Fire Department Photo: Stacy Turner, Contributing Reporter

HFD Assistant Chief Mark Kozak welcomed Firefighter/EMTs Austin Grube and Jason Dailey to the Hiram Fire Department

Photo: Stacy Turner, Contributing Reporter

Hiram – At the start of the last meeting of Village Council, Mayor Lou Bertrand swore in two new Firefighter/EMTs to the Hiram Fire Department: Austin Grube and Jason Dailey. Both gentlemen join the Village with training as firefighters and EMTs and will be a welcome addition to the HFD team. Assistant Chief Mark Kozak also noted that the fire truck purchased by the HFD from the Aurora Fire Department has been refurbished and is currently in service.

In his report, Police Chief Ed Samec reported that his Department has received a $2,000 grant from the Hiram Community Trust. The money will be used for the ‘Shop with a Cop’ program. In addition, Chief Samec reported that his Department has grown by two additional officers — Officer Brittnee Wolf and Officer Keith Whan. In addition, Samec reported that Click or Ticket event in May was a big success. During the event, the HPD rewarded motorists and passengers caught wearing their seatbelts, with vouchers for a free Maggie’s donut or a free ice cream cone from Garrettsville McDonalds. Approximately 1,000 vouchers were handed out during the event, which took place at the intersection of Wakefield and Garfield Roads.

In his report, Mayor Lou Bertrand conveyed that the Recreation and Park Board scheduled a working session for Friday, June 20th beginning at 9:00 a.m. and invite input from Mr. Todd Peetz, of the County Planning Agency and Ms. Chris Craycroft, Director of the Portage County Parks and a representative from Akron Metropolitan Transit Study [AMATS]. In addition, the Mayor reported that Park Board members voted to merge the Hiram Recreation & Park Board with the Hiram Beautification Committee. The Mayor has requested that the Village Solicitor prepare such legislation that will be ready for first reading in September Council meeting. The next Park Board meeting will be held on July 11th at 8:30 am.

In addition, Mayor Bertrand reported that one bid for $ 65,432.10 was received for the purchase of the old fire hall. The bid, which was accepted by Council, was submitted by Dave Auble, owner of the Hiram Professional Building. Council will pass the necessary legislation on the matter at the next regularly scheduled Council meeting on July 8th at 7 pm. Lastly, the Mayor reported that planning for the upcoming July 4th festivities have begun. He announced that family activities and a concert on July 3rd at 7:30 would precede the customary firework display that night at roughly 9:30 pm. The festivities will continue on July 4th, with a games, activites, and the grand parade, which steps off at 1:30 pm. The Fourth of July Planning Committee will meet at Bonney Castle on Friday, June 13th at 8:30 a.m.

In legislation, Council approved an agreement with Hiram Township for traffic enforcement services. This agreement will allow the Village Police Department to provide services to Township residents approximately ten hours per week. Police Chief Samec noted that an agreement of this sort had been in discussion since 1991, stating it was a “huge deal” that Council and the Township were finally able to come to a mutually agreeable arrangement.

Lastly, Council has scheduled a Budget Hearing at 6:45 pm on July 8th, immediately preceding the next regularly schedule Council meeting. The purpose of this hearing is to approve the Village’s 2015 Budget, which is due to be filed with the County by July 20th, as stipulated in the Ohio Revised Code.

Burton W. Cole, Pulitzer Prize-nominated author and award-winning humorist celebrates the release of his second children’s novel, Bash and the Chicken Coop Caper, with  two upcoming book signings.

Bash and the Chicken Coop Caper, released to bookstores nationwide on May 1. My first novel for middle grades readers, Bash and the Pirate Pig (2013), was a finalist for the Selah Award for Best Children’s Book of the Year, and a nominee for the Christian Retailing’s Best Award for Children’s Book. The third novel, Bash and the Chocolate Milk Cows, is scheduled for a spring release.

In Bash and the Chicken Coop Caper, the kids beat the boredom of a blizzard with crazy stunts like a pig-operated ambulance sled, a snow cannon super slingshot built from bicycle inner tubes and boxer shorts, and try to figure out where mysterious footprints have come from and why odd things like eggs and mittens are disappearing.

Cole will be signing copies of his newest book and discussing the inspiration behind his children’s novel series.

Cole  will be part of the four-author book signing from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 21, at The Village Bookstore, 8140 Main St., Garrettsville. Store owner Ellen Eckhouse invites all to her quaint, old treasure trove of new and used books and teddy bears in downtown Garrettsville.

Cole  will be enthusing with the kids of the summer reading program from 1 to 2 p.m. Monday, June 23, at the Garrettsville Public Library about the joys of writing. He will  share his first “novel,” which he wrote when he was in fourth grade. Cole also plans to “try a writing exercise, read from the books, and laugh ourselves silly.” Books will also be availabe for signing.

Cole is a 1982 Kent State graduate; a Pulitzer-prize nominee; a former Kent, Brimfield and Garrettsville resident now living in Nelson Township with his wife, Terry; and a former Record-Courier reporter (1985-88)  and currently works  as assistant metro editor and humor columnist – the award-winning Burt’s Eye View – for the Tribune Chronicle in Warren.

Garrettsville –  Council met June 11, 2014 for their regularly scheduled village council meeting.  The addenda and the meeting were both brief.

After approving the minutes from last months meeting council reviewed revenue, expenditure, cash balance and income tax reports.  Comments from members of council indicated they were pleased to see income tax numbers were increased.  Councilman Hadzinsky also commented that the village was “in the black” and trends looked optimistic.

In other business after a short discussion council decided to leave proposed ordinance 2014-14 (about compensatory time) tabled.  They also authorized the village clerk to pay overages on the bill for concrete that was poured on Windham St. due to fuel increases and to pay the invoice from the Portage County Development Board who is responsible for the administration of the village’s tax abatement program in Garrettsville’s enterprise zones.

During round table discussion, Mayor Patrick gave an update on the Liberty Street bridge project.  He said he was told that it should be opened to traffic by the end of the month, just in time for Summerfest.  He also stated that the village’s streets supervisor would be contacting Nelson Township trustees to co-ordinate the chip/seal scheduled to begin in July for Brosius Rd.

The mayor also gave an update from the last Planning Commission meeting.  He said builder Mike Maschek showed his plans for the recently purchased feed mill at the east end of Main St.  Demolition has already begun and should be completed by Summerfest.  He also reported that the Pizza Hut construction has started and block is already being laid.  The Mayor announced that Jeff Shehan was sworn in as a member of Planning Commission, he replaces Don Harvey.

Councilwoman Harrington gave a brief update on the Village Services Vision Committee.  She stated that they are revamping the survey questions that were used at last year’s business showcase and will be asking residents to fill out a new survey.  They plan is to have the surveys available for next month’s council meeting to get approval and then distribute them out to the community.  The survey will also be available on the Village’s website: http://www.garrettsville.org.

Council adjourned to executive session to discuss personnel.

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 July 9, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. at Village Hall.

 

barn-treasures

Photo: The Barn Treasures

Middlefield – We’re celebrating the Summer Solstice marking the first day of summer and the longest day of the year with our first annual Barn Sale Sat. June 21, 10am-4pm Rain or Shine. Outside we’ll have some of our Artisans with their hand-crafted works of art under tents, an Antique Dealer and an Amish Bake Sale with all proceeds being donated to the new Amish school. Inside, and out you’ll find many special one-day deals and new treasures. Win a door prize, enjoy a lemonade and some Amish bakery! Come join the fun and bring a friend and spend the day in beautiful Middlefield and Geauga County Ohio. Some of the Artisans are also introducing new products at this event. Artisan products will be both outside and inside and include: Repurposed Glass Garden Art, Quilted table runners, Hand poured Garden Art pavers, Plain and Simple jewelry designs, Lighted wine bottles all outside and inside. Artisan gifts inside include wood turned walking sticks, Painted repurposed slate roofing, Steam Punk jewelry, Lake Erie Beach Glass jewelry, Needle felted sculptures, Alpaca Happy Butt Mats, Amish poured Soy Candles, Butterfly Goats Milk Soaps and Hand painted glass ornaments and Votives and lots more!!! And don’t forget, we are a Consignment Store and carry QUALITY gently used items from Antique and Vintage, to everyday useful kitchen tools, farm tools and everything in between. The Barn Treasures is located at 15264 Kinsman Rd (Rt 87) Middlefield, and open summer hours of Monday through Friday 10-5 and Sat. 10-4. Our phone number is 440-632-1858. Find us on Facebook.com/the barn treasures.

Mantua Township – If you’re a community-minded individual who is looking to help make a difference for fellow residents, than the Mantua Township Trustees want to hear from you. They’re looking for your help to transform a historic gem into a vibrant community resource. You may remember that late last year, the Portage County Regional Planning Commission (RPC) was asked by Township Trustees to solicit community wants and needs regarding the potential renovation of the Mantua Center School property. 

Rootstown - As a result of its ongoing success in developing innovative and progressive learning opportunities for students, Bio-Med Science Academy, a year-round public STEM+M high school located on the campus of Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED), has been selected by the Ohio STEM Learning Network to serve as one of its regional STEM training center sites.

The Ohio STEM Learning Network training centers were developed to meet the growing demand for STEM professional development and provide educators at every school with the support they need to implement effective STEM education strategies. Each training center site highlights the strengths of the STEM schools in that region, allowing educators to focus on proven and effective STEM education and learning methodologies. Trainings cover topics like problem- and project-based learning, intersessions, student-led conferences, technology integration, and mastery learning.

“From the start, Bio-Med’s team has been dedicated to serving as a resource for the region. That focus on a ‘big footprint’ is one of the reasons we have been so excited to see the school grow,” said Dustin Pyles, director of operations for Ohio STEM Learning Network. “Bio-Med’s selection as a training center recognizes the school’s success at preparing students and its value as a demonstration site of innovative teaching and learning. The number of new and emerging STEM schools and programs in Ohio has doubled since Bio-Med first opened, and the need for these services has never been higher.”

The Ohio STEM Learning Network is supported and managed by BattelleEd, a nonprofit venture of Battelle Memorial Institute, as the state’s official public-private STEM education partner. Bio-Med Science Academy is among eight schools within the Ohio STEM Learning Network to currently serve as regional training center sites.

As a training center site, Bio-Med Science Academy will offer training and consultation to teachers all across Ohio in identified areas of expertise, including Google Apps for educators, literacy design collaborative, math design collaborative, restorative practices, and engineering concepts.

“As a relatively young STEM school, we are honored by our selection as one of the Ohio STEM Learning Network’s regional training center sites,” said Stephanie Lammlein, director of the Academy. “We have certainly benefitted from the insights of our peers as we have developed our own best practices, and it is in that spirit we look forward to sharing our successful instruction techniques with our colleagues from around the state.”

Bio-Med Science Academy is a tuition-free public STEM+M (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math and Medicine) high school that is open to any student in Ohio but was developed to serve students primarily from rural communities in Portage County and other surrounding counties. The Academy offers an innovative and progressive learning environment that cultivates academic excellence and rigor in the STEM+M disciplines while nurturing creativity, inventiveness and community in its students.

A year-round high school, the Academy’s course themes are developed based on current trends in science and medicine as well as the research and education being conducted at NEOMED. The Academy also develops educational experiences around community health and the environment in both urban and rural communities. For more information on the Academy or to fill out an application for the waitlist, please visit www.biomedscienceacademy.org or call 330.325.6186.

amvets-newtonfalls

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

Garrettsville - Garrettsville Summerfest is almost here and the Summerfest committee is busy tweaking everything to make sure everyone enjoys the weekend-long festival. Each year after the festival, the committee reviews the event and looks for ways to improve for the next year. New this year is a fourth prize to the car or cash raffle; a change to the Grand Parade time including a  fire truck extravaganza; the location of the rides  and  a new shuttle service has been established to offer additional ample parking.

Second Prize for the Garrettsville Summerfest 's Cash or Car Raffle will be a Husqvarna USA YT48XLS Lawn Tractor! ($2,899 Value) Stop by S&K Sales and Service to check it out!

Second Prize for the Garrettsville Summerfest ‘s Cash or Car Raffle will be a Husqvarna USA YT48XLS Lawn Tractor! ($2,899 Value) Stop by S&K Sales and Service to check it out!

This year participants in the Chamber of Commerce’s Car or Cash Raffle will have the chance to win a brand-new Chevy Equinox (courtesy Charles Auto Family) or $20,000 in cash.  The second prize is a Husqvarna YT XLS Riding Mower courtesy of S&K Sales & Service. The  third  prize is an iPad Mini with Retina Display and fourth prize is a Gas House grill.

Raffle tickets are $20 each or 6 for $100  and can be purchased at area businesses and restaurants prior to Summerfest and at the Summerfest Information Tent during the event. The drawing will be held at the close of the festival on Sunday, June 29 following Garrettsville Idol. The winner does not need to be present to win.

Though there have been no safety incidents, the Garrettsville Summerfest Committee has reviewed the concerns of parents and motorists regarding the placement of the rides and carnival games. We are pleased to announce that the Summerfest Kid’s Funland has been relocated to a larger location for 2014. Our Kid’s Funland, which features a variety of great rides, games, and food will be located near Sky Plaza IGA (sponsor of the 2014 Kiddie Pedal Tractor Pulls). Riders and parents are sure to appreciate the more spacious location, additional rides & games, and a position away from the traffic. Sky Plaza is only a short walk, or ride (via Summerfest Shuttle), from the Monster Midway & St. Ambrose Chicken Festival.

The committee has changed the start time of the Grand Parade. This year, the parade will step-off at 12:30 pm rather than noon, as it had in the past. Speaking of the parade, they have added a fire truck extravaganza to the event as a thank-you to all of the departments who helped during the fire.  The fire truck extravaganza will be at the beginning of the parade,  therefore, if your little ones love trucks this will be a must see event.

With over 25,000 people in town over Summerfest weekend, it can be a challenge to locate a parking spot close to the action.  This year we are alleviating parking headaches by working with the James A. Garfield Local School District to offer shuttle service from the Garfield High School (10233 SR 88), and Sky Plaza (8311 Windham St.) parking lots to the midway. Donations will be accepted aboard the buses to help defray the cost of drivers’ salaries with any proceeds from the shuttle service going to the #GarrettsvilleStrong Fund. The shuttle buses will run from 4pm until 11 pm on Saturday and 5pm until 11pm on Sunday.

To plan your weekend of fun be sure to check out the 2014 SummerFest Fun Guide located in this weeks Villager.

Garrettsville – Almost three months after the fire that devastated a portion of downtown Garrettsville, the charred remains of what once was, have been removed.  Fill dirt and fencing, banners displaying  support and hope now line a portion of Main Street.

As the cleanup process was taking place, the Garrettsville Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors  have been working to establish guidelines on how the monies raised and held  in the GarrettsvilleStrong fund will be distributed.

Working with a Cleveland-based business attorney (who donated his time), Portage County Auditor Janet Espisito and the Ohio Attorney Generals office, the board  finalized the disbursement guidelines for the fund – which as of June 13th was sitting at over $65,526.

While multiple businesses were affected, there were four property owners whose buildings were lost or damaged on March 22.  On Wednesday, June 18th the board met with those property owners to sit down and review the GarrettsvilleStrong disbursement guidelines, answer any questions and address any concerns that they may have regarding the fund prior to the information being made public.

The #GarrettsvilleStrong Fund is comprised of monies acquired by direct donations or through fundraising efforts and earmarked for the rebuilding of the Main Street area destroyed by the fire on March 22, 2014.

These monies will be made available to the property owners of record at the time of monetary request for the sole use of rebuilding. Each Current Property Owner received a letter stating how the funds will be allocated, how payments shall be processed and their options should the owner decide not to rebuild.

Monies from the fund  will be  allocated based on the ground level lot size per the Portage County auditors office tax map.  With fundraisers scheduled to continue throughout 2014 it is the Board’s hope that these funds will help defray some of the expenses that the property owners will incur as they rebuild Main Street.

The entire document is available online at http://garrettsvillearea.com/library.html

 

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Turn your trash into someone else’s treasure and put a little cash in your own pocket. Booth spaces are still available at a popular Flea Market at The West Woods in Geauga Park District.

The Flea Market will be Saturday, July 12, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at The West Woods picnic area, 9465 Kinsman Road, Russell Township. Dozens of vendors will sell treasures such as antiques, collectibles, bird houses, jewelry (new and old), tools, toys, furniture, rugs, plants, handmade materials, soaps, general household items and other bargains galore. Don’t miss your opportunity to be part of this popular day.

This year’s event is being hosted by Geauga County Ohio Horseman’s Council. Outdoor spaces, the size of two parking spaces, can be reserved for $25, or an 8-foot picnic table under the shelter can be reserved for $15. All application fees for vendor spaces will be payable to Geauga County OHC and proceeds from the event will benefit Geauga Park District’s Bridle Trail Fund.

To purchase your spot, or for more information about Geauga County Ohio Horseman Council’s benefit Flea Market, call Jennifer at 216-406-7639.

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Portage County – The Portage County Health Department, Robinson Memorial Hospital, and Portage County Emergency Management Agency will hold an educational conference on June 17, 2014. The conference will be held at the Ravenna Elks Lodge from 11:30pm-4:00pm. Lunch will be provided. The intended audience includes Emergency Responders, MRC Volunteers, School Staff, Public Health Responders, Administrators, and Concerned Citizens.

The conference will feature information on Portage Prepares, a local resource for information on how to respond in emergencies; terrorism prevention and awareness; cyber terrorism and the threat posed to our infrastructure; and psychological 1st aid training.

The Portage County Health Department is taking the opportunity to recognize our Portage County MRC Volunteers during the conference. MRC Volunteers are part of a national network of volunteers that are organized on a local level to improve the health and safety of their communities. The Portage County MRC Volunteers have provided support in emergency preparedness and response trainings, vaccination clinics, and outreach for Portage County residents.

This conference is open to the public with limited space. For additional information or if interested in attending, please contact Becky at 330-296-9919, ext. 137.

 

Hiram – Author and longtime Akron Beacon Journal columnist David Giffels will headline the first Western Reserve Book Festival at Hiram College on June 21, 2014.

The event, which will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Kennedy Center, will celebrate literature of Ohio’s Western Reserve, hosting dozens of area authors of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, young adult and children’s work. Attendees will have the opportunity to meet these authors, have bookssigned, purchase books and attend readings.

Giffels, the keynote speaker, is also a contributing commentator and essayist on NPR station WKSU in Kent. His books include “The Hard Way on Purpose” and “All the Way Home: Building a Family in a Falling-Down House.” An acclaimed author and writer, his work has appeared in New York Times Magazine, Wall Street Journal, Esquire.com, ESPN, Grantland, Redbook and many other publications. He also was a writer for the MTV series “Beavis and Butt-Head.”

Additional authors will include Shelley Costa, Harmony Evans, Amanda Flower, Kevin Keating, Scott Lax, Kylie Logan, Michael Olin-Hitt, James Renner, Les Roberts, Debra Robinson, Stephanie Siciarz, S. Andrew Swann, Chris Akin, Paul Bauer, Gail Bellamy, Peg Bobel, Mark Dawidziak, Joyce Dyer, Jen Hirt, William Kerrigan, Wendy Koile, Lynn Metzger, Jennifer Morrow, Michael Olin-Hitt, James Renner, Brad Ricca, Robert Sberna, Jane Turzillo, Cinda Chima, James Bradley Clarke, Colleen Clayton, Leah Clifford, Jen Dutton, Julie Lindsey, Mindy McGinnis, Tricia Springstubb, Scott Tracey, Jeanne Bryner, Susan Grimm, David Hassler, Lesley Jenike, Philip Metres, Mary Quade, F. Daniel Rzicznek, Tom Batiuk and Eric Schmiedl. Additionally, several area journals and literary organizations will be represented.

The Festival, sponsored by the Friends of the Hiram College Library, the Lindsay-Crane Center for Writing and Literature, WKSU, and Barnes & Noble, is free and open to the public. There will be amplefree parking; several dining options will be available.

For more information, visit www.hiram.edu/wrbf or contact Hiram College Library Director David Everett at everettdd@hiram.edu or 330-569-5353. Hiram College is located at 11730 Garfield Road, Hiram, Ohio 44234.

Are you tired of tooting your own horn?

Here’s your chance to try playing your own pipes.  Well, not YOUR pipes exactly, but they’d be yours if you’d like to stop by the Garrettsville United Methodist Church and pick up an octave or two.  Here’s the deal :

When the abovementioned GUMC recently renovated, refurbished and updated its vintage (circa 1913) pipe organ, there were pieces/parts removed to be replaced by new musical apparatus…apparati?…stuff.  These pieces/parts were just too COOL to be pitched( although some of the REALLY long ones—eight -footers– had to go to that Big Recital Hall in the Sky) and they’ve been stashed away in the church basement since that time.  But now, “the time has come, the Walrus said”, to do something with these artifacts to free up some space  and move on…but they’re STILL just too COOL to pitch, if that can be avoided.  There are bunches of these antiques in boxes waiting to be re-purposed, re-used, adopted by somebody.

There are metal pipes that sound like tin whistles—look sort of like them too—or like steamboat whistles, with the same heft.  There are wooden pipes that have the mellowest tone imaginable.  The metal pipes are round and heavy-ish (mostly lead); the wooden ones are square and lighter than one might think.  Some are only about ten inches long, some are shouldering up to the  departed eight-footers.  They have the   tone that they are supposed to sound engraved on the lip somewhere, so you could assemble a sort of giant Pan-pipes affair on your back porch, should you, being handy, choose to do so(Take THAT, you wussy wind chimes!).  They’d make a one-of-a-kind accent piece in your music room or over the mantel.  I’m not sure what kind of wood  the wooden ones are made of but it’s older than most of us around here and might well be made into something neat if there are any interested woodworkers around.  Right now every one of them is really grimy and in need of some cleaning (I never  want to overdo it in the cleaning department.  “Cleanliness is next to godliness” ?…I say it’s next to impossible) and a little TLC.

Anyway, anyway, anyway…anyone who’d be interested in acquiring one—or more—of these treasures should inquire at the GUMC (office open 9:00a.m.—1:00p.m., Tuesday through Friday) .  A donation would be appreciated but not strictly necessary (Even new organs have to be maintained, y’know).

Toot toot!

 

Mantua – The Village of Mantua Service Department is pleased to announce that it has implemented a new emergency alert system to notify residents and business owners of critical, time sensitive information.  The system works very much like the ones that Crestwood Schools and several surrounding communities have adopted.  Alerts may address water line emergencies, planned water line work, road closures, critical safety information, etc.  You will be able to choose to receive the updates by text message, e-mail or voice call.

The easiest way to sign up is to go to the AMG Alerts link on the left hand side of the Village’s homepage www.mantuavillage.com.  The sign-up page will ask for your most current contact information as well as your contact preferences.  If you cannot get to a computer, call Village Hall at (330) 274-8776 and we will help you through the process.  Sign up is optional, however we will soon start using the alerts instead of going door to door with notices.

 

Garrettsville – Calling all kids ages 12- 18 years old, what time is it?  It’s Summer Wars time – a Monday night must!  This weekly event for teens features, learning about Christ through games, songs, and teamwork, while hanging out with other teens in the area and learning problem solving skills together. This year’s theme is Relentless 2014.

The event kicked-off Monday, June 9, 2014, at 6:30 pm, but do not despair, if you did not make it Monday, you can join the group all summer long. If you’re not available every Monday night it is ok. Come when you can and they will accept you with open arms.

Summer Wars has impacted many teens throughout the years here is what a couple of them have had to say about the summertime event.

Joey Miranda, a 17 year old from Windham says “Summer Wars” is much more than games to me. It’s a place, home to endless potential, a place that brings the opportunity to connect to one of many people that are on the right path. In a nutshell, “Summer Wars” is probably the best, most entertaining thing you could do with a Monday evening.”

Kaylee Martin from Garrettsville says, “This is a great place to be. Not only do you play amazingly-crazy games, but you meet people, who share common interests and stories with you.”

Robin Wadkins has two children, one who is now an adult and has “graduated” out of Summer Wars and another one who is still involved in the program.  Robin says that her children “have enjoyed the competitive and imaginative games with the inspiration coming back to learning about our Lord. It has been a safe place for kids to feel welcomed and to make new friends. They have basically come out of their shells and have always looked forward to the next Monday that they would meet.”

The program is good for all teens no matter what their religious affiliations might be. It is a youth group like no other. So are you ready for war? Come out and join them on Monday night starting at 6:30 pm at Life Church across the street from Garfield High School’s football stadium in Garrettsville.

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Mantua – At the June meeting of the Crestwood School Board, District Technology Supervisor Jeff Woolard was asked to give a presentation to the Board sharing his team’s achievements this year, and the projects they’re looking to implement within the District over the coming months. With the help of his team, District Network Technicians Carl Zeleznik and Nicholas Karman, Woolard shared that the group has added 65 access points, took ownership of the District’s domain (crestwoodschools.org) and is in the process of implementing Google Cloud platform throughout the District. The current and ongoing advances will help provide platform reliability, increased storage capacity and better online project collaboration, “even on snow days,” joked Woolard. As an added bonus, many Portage and Stark County school districts have already chosen, or are migrating to Google. The Stark-Portage Area Computer Consortium (SPARCC) is able to provide technical support for Google, as well. SPARCC, of which Crestwood is a member, also serves school districts in Stark, Portage and Carroll counties.

As a part of his group’s three-year plan, Google chromebooks will used throughout Schools in the District. During the current school year, a new mobile cart, complete with 30 laptop computers, has been tested in the Intermediate Building, with positive results. The purchase of this cart was made possible through an anonymous donation. Future District plans include providing laptops on similar carts, which include charging stations, for use throughout the District. These new laptops will be the primary vehicle used in online standardized testing. In addition, the District’s web site is in the process of being redesigned, and will be launched over the summer.

In her Sports Report, Board Member Debra Soltisz reported that the following students received All-PTC Recognition: In Baseball, Gabe Surgeon was named to First Team, Josh Hampton and Matt Lyons were named to Second Team, and Jared Bailey and Ross Nielsen earned Honorable Mention. In Softball, Bailee Kodash earned First Team, while Reanna Szarka and Holly Hoffman earned Second Team status and Miranda Brothers and Taylor Chism earned Honorable Mention. In Boys Track, Jeremiah Fitzgerald and Jacob Ondash earned First Team. Austin Usher, George Lesnak, Craig Davis, John Kilbourne and Brendan Fannin were named to the Second Team, while Tyler Brady and Michael Picone earned Honorable Mention.

In Girls Track, Alania Nuti, Taylor Rector, Marissa Midgley, Lindsay Thut, Hayley Zigman and Abby Soltisz earned First Team. Lindsay Thut, Challis Roberts, Hayley Zigman, Kira Judd, Maddie Sorrick and Abby Soltisz earned Second Team and Carlie Cofojohn and Melissa Soltisz received Honorable Mention. Lastly, Justin Vaughan was named to First Team for Tennis while Andrew Shahan and Tyler Roth earned Honorable Mention.

In his Academic Report, Board Member Todd Monroe shared that the use of Blizzard Bags was successful, as was the fifth grade orientation at the Middle School. In addition, he reported that Crestwood Middle School Leadership students held their second annual walk to benefit Juvenile Diabetes. Over fifty students walked to raise funds totaling $1,069.71 for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. CMS Leadership advisor, Kristen Tekavec, shared, “It’s so amazing to have such awesome students and staff raise funds for such a worthy cause.”

In her Maplewood Update, Board Member Bonnie Lovejoy reported that construction had begun on the Animal Science facility. The program will include training for employment opportunities including vet assistant, grooming, kennel, doggie daycare and pet shop industries.

This meeting was recorded; the video can be viewed at crestwoodschools.org. The next regularly scheduled meeting of the Crestwood School Board will be held on Thursday, July 3rd at 7 pm in the CHS library.

 

dance

Garrettsville - Five years ago the 8th Count Dance Center celebrated its first year of dance classes, with a spring recital called “Dancing thru the Decades.” Since that time, they have continued to grow and have held annual recitals. This year’s recital theme was “Celebration” as Shanelle Waggoner and her center  celebrated five years of success in Garrettsville.  For more information on the 8th Count Dance Center visit their website at http://www.the8thcount.com

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Garrettsville – Good things come to those who wait.

Keep that in mind as Garrettsville’s Buckeye Block sits vacant, waiting for funding, conceptualizing, planning, revisions, approvals, and infrastructure before the first ceremonial shovels hit the dirt, signaling an official start to the rebuilding process.

According to primary property owner of the Buckeye Block Mike Maschek, “Even though we all had insurance coverage, no one can afford to rebuild according to modern standards at this point. We need a government grant to make rebuilding feasible — not a loan. We’re hoping such funding could become available within 60 days. If that comes through, it will take at least a year to see any action at the Buckeye Block.”

The process starts with a basic concept and design, Maschek explained. Maschek Construction Co. is working closely with Garrettsville officials (i.e., Village Council, Planning Commission, Fire, Police, Utility and Street Depts.) to ensure that everyone is on board and that the concept will flow with Main Street’s historic identity. Once the concept is approved, an architect will draw up a detailed illustration. This second step is again reviewed by village planning officials (Design Review Board/Village Planning Committee). The final step in the preparation process is for an engineer to integrate all the ideas and concepts together in formal building plans that meet all current county and state building codes for final approval by all involved committees and the Portage County Building Department.

While actual building concepts and designs are in their initial stages, discussions are under way considering the possibility of building a full scale street to replace the alley that now runs behind the Buckeye Block; to replace the 100-year-old water line with a fresh, new line; to replace current electric lines with an underground system; to incorporate trees, grass and architectural lighting to the historic streetscape; and to incorporate other attractive features designed to draw visitors to downtown Garrettsville. Architectural students from Kent State University have made reconceptualizing Main Street their senior project, so new ideas are coming in that planners will consider while imagining the rebuilding process.

“We may never get an opportunity like this again,” Maschek said. “So we want to make the most of this quiet time to plan carefully for something valuable and lasting. We want to measure twice, then cut; not the other way around. We can’t afford to throw something together in a hurry and see if it sticks. A pearl starts as just a grain of sand. It takes time to become a beautiful pearl.”

Considering the relatively long wait for rebuilding the Buckeye Block, Maschek has been receiving enthusiastic inquiries from potential buyers and renters for the historic feed mill at Main and Water Streets, which he expects to be fully renovated and ready for occupancy as early as October 1 and surely before the end of the calendar year.

With asbestos abatement concluded, excavators should be on site by midweek to tear down the dilapidated rear buildings. The site behind the mill should be cleared and seeded with grass by the time Summerfest begins on June 27, Maschek said.

 

Windham – Windham Township Trustees met for their regularly scheduled meeting Thursday June 5, 2014. The trustees approved the May minutes as presented, and the expenditures for that month as well.

Guest Josh Johnston presented rough ideas and cost for maintaining and updating the website. After some discussion the trustees unanimously agreed to award Josh the job of rebuilding the website and maintaining it. Josh currently does Hiram Township’s website and was recommended by trustee Rich Gano.

Road Supervisor Brian Miller met with the county engineers and after viewing the township’s roads the engineer recommended the trustees chip and seal Colton Road and then consider Bryant Road. After some discussion, the trustees decided to look at chip and sealing Colton, and crack fill Bryant, Wadsworth and Werger Roads. Next year, they will consider chip and sealing Bryant Road.  The Trustees will contact Hard Labor about the crack filling. Miller will get bid books from the county auditor for bidding out the chip and seal project.

A discussion was held on Mr. Soinski’s proposed the cul-de-sac, at the end of Frazier Road. Miller thinks the township needs to put some kind of barrier up to prevent township residents from using the vacated portion of Frazier Road for walking etc. Dann Timmons said, right now they really can’t plan to do anything until they see the engineered drawings for the project. Timmons will contact Mr. Soinski on the issue to see if he is planning a barrier for the road.

A discussion was held once again, about township residents living on village roads who are not having any success getting the village to answer to their complaints about road and drainage issues.  Currently the township’s hands are tied since they do not own the road or its right-a-way. Other road issues discussed were the lack of visibility at the end of Wadsworth Road and a few ditching issues.

In zoning news, Inspector Joe Pinti said he wrote three permits last month, one for a garage and two for decks. Pinti said he is continuing to monitor Horner’s property and they are slowly getting rid of the junk he has accumulated recently.

In cemetery news, the foundations are poured, and 78 new graves are laid out. The south drive needs some attention at the curve in the back. After some discussion, the trustees agreed to have the driveway repaired. A resident who has an engineering degree has offered to look at drainage issues and offer some suggestions how to solve the issue. Trustees agreed to take him up on the offer.

Timmons reported that the fire board approved the purchase of a lap top for the chief, and put the discussion of pursuing legal action on the table as there weren’t enough board members in attendance to have a quorum. Two of the members are not eligible to vote on the issue as they have a conflict of interest.  Timmons also reported that the WVFD was awarded the contract to service the Portage County and Trumbull County portions of Camp Ravenna. The chief is currently working on setting up mutual aid for Camp Ravenna.

A question was asked about the “No Parking” signs for Geneva Road. The signs are in and will be posted soon.

The meeting was adjourned and the next scheduled meeting is for July 3, 2014 at 7pm. All meetings are held at the Windham Town Hall.

 

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DeYoungHiram - This spring, Hiram-based advertising agency the Communications Factory used a little helium to help an area high school senior on her way to earning a higher education. Over its last eleven years in operation, the Factory has awarded a $1,000 scholarship every spring to a deserving northeastern Ohio high school senior to help them in pursuit of a college degree. This year, however, Plant Manager Brad Turner wanted to do things a little differently. Instead of waiting to attend the scholarship recipient’s Senior banquet, Turner chose to surprise this year’s winner, Ms. Allison DeYoung of Field High School in Uniontown, Ohio.

Unbeknown to DeYoung, Turner had worked with administrators at Field High School to stage a covert operation on a random day in May, during DeYoung’s English class. At intervals throughout the class period, some of DeYoung’s classmates entered the room, each handing her a single, shiny, red, star-shaped Mylar balloon. DeYoung sat mystified, surrounded by her equally puzzled classmates, as the excitement mounted with each new delivery. Within a few minutes, nine balloons floated above DeYoung’s desk. When the card attached to balloon number ten was delivered, the secret was revealed, to the amazement and delight of DeYoung and her classmates.

According to Brad Turner of the Communications Factory, the card read, “While balloons alone are a great way to boost your spirits, what’s inside of each of these will boost it even more. Congratulations, Allison. You’re the winner of the 2014 Communications Factory Scholarship. Pop each balloon and celebrate!”  As the words from the card began to sink in, DeYoung’s’s teacher handed her a pair of scissors and urged her to start popping the balloons. As she did so, she uttered, “Oh my goodness!” and “Oh my gosh!” many times over while she located each tightly rolled one-hundred-dollar bill, one per balloon, for a total of $1,000. Shortly thereafter, she called her mom to share the exciting news…and to ask her to please come pick up the money.

In a heartfelt note she later wrote to Turner, DeYoung expressed her gratitude. “Thank you so much for choosing me as the winner of this year’s scholarship. And especially thank you for the wonderful surprise in my English class! I have to say that I was not expecting that at all!” To see the event as it unfolded in the Field High School classroom, view the video at: facebook.com/communicationsfactory.

In April of 2015, the Factory will be awarding another scholarship to help another deserving student’s dreams take flight. Visit www.communicationsfactory.net for more information.

 

Chess

Garrettsville – Isabella Folio (right)  and Brody Swigonski (left) won their respective divisions for the annual Garfield 4th grade PTO chess tournament (pictured).  Congratulations to them both!  The tournament was held over their lunch break for several weeks, and they recently competed in the finals.

For the boys division, Brody Swigonski defeated Kodiak Brogan in the final match.  For the girls division, Isabella Folio defeated Addrianna Conway in the finals.

The tournament was sponsored by the Garfield PTO and the elementary school.  Students were invited to come during their lunch once a week and play chess, checkers, cards, or even just read a book.  Almost one hundred different students participated in the program.  Special thanks to the PTO, the fourth grade teachers, and principal Keri Dornack.

 

Nelson Twp – Officials present at the June 4th, 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, and Community House Caretaker Michelle Cmunt.

Dave Freiss, chief of the Garrettsville Freedom Nelson Joint Fire District, requested use of the Nelson Community House on September 21st. The building will be utilized as a meeting location for the fire district’s training exercises in nearby Nelson Kennedy Ledges. The Community House will also be utilized as the location for lunch, and bathrooms so people can get cleaned up. Parkman, Troy, Hiram, Windham, and Mantua fire departments have also been invited to attend the training session. Helicopters will be landed in the archery field, and  water rescue training will be held in the Quarry Park. Leonard made a motion to allow use of Community House on September 21st at no charge. Matota seconded the motion, and it was unanimously approved.

Finney presented the trustees with the minutes of the May 21st meeting. Matota made a motion to approve them as presented, which was seconded by Elias.  Finney then presented the trustees with bills and wages to be paid totaling $15,214.63. Elias made motion to pay them as presented, and the motion was seconded by Leonard.

Finney provided the trustees with information he had received from an “incentivizer”. An incentivizer tracks down financial incentives from electric companies in exchange for a percentage of the incentive money received by the township. After presenting the information to the trustees, Finney offered no advise either way. Leonard suggested tabling the issue until it could be researched further. All trustees were in agreement.

Finney then presented the information required for the hiring of Richard Bailey as a part-time township employee. Leonard made a motion to hire Baily at the same $12.25 rate as the previous part-time hire. All voted to approve the motion.

Matota reported that he has spoken with the township’s insurer regarding volunteer projects on township property, and that they recommended the township put a “hold harmless” agreement in place. Meduri provided feedback, and a few examples of hold harmless waiver for the trustees to build on. It has become a township policy that any time the township has people get involved with township projects, a hold harmless waiver must be signed.

Vanek received the revised information for township chip and seal projects. The specifications for the road project are still incorrect, despite Vanek sending the requirements for the projects to the County Engineer’s office multiple times. The incorrect information is causing a delay in bidding out road projects. Matota offered to make a trip to the County Engineer’s office to get things straightened out in person. Vanek also reported that the new part-time employees have been working well. His crew made first total pass of 2014 on all township roads, and they will be working alongside the crew from Garrettsville to birm Brosius Road.

VanDerHoeven handed in the zoning report, and reported that she had been in touch with Lisa at Regional Planning. No asbestos is present at any of the four properties listed in the latest Move Ohio Forward project. After the two week notification process, demolition can begin.

The trustees approved making an attempt at selling the boom mower for a $15,500 minimum on consignment at Chalker’s Auction in August. The funds from the sale could then be used to pave the way for the purchase of a much-needed replacement.

Leonard would like to order $600 worth of infield dirt from Brugmans. All trustees voted to approve the expense

An estimate on the fuel tank has been received in the amount of $17,615 but does not include tanks or electrical hookup. Leonard would like to rethink the installation on the project and have the road crew perform the installation. The project, as bid, would exceed $24,000 by the sole outside bidder (it’s a small job, and based on the estimate the bidder knows few others want the gig). The trustees reviewed the estimate. Elias will be getting in touch with the company that was supposed to be finding bids, and see where they are at in the process.

Leonard reported that 10 prisoners, courtesy of the Portage County Sheriff’s Office, would install the Pixley Park playground equipment on June 19th.

Following the signing of the checks the meeting was adjourned.

 

 

Garrettsville – Garfield High School graduate Simeon Brown of Garrettsville is the 2014 recipient of the President James A. Garfield Award.  The $1000 scholarship honors the values held  by James A. Garfield, who at age 26 became president of what would later be known as Hiram College and who later became president of the United States.  The scholarship is awarded on consideration of the student’s essay concerning  a value or belief reflected in the life of President Garfield and the student’s demonstrated scholarship and community or school  service. Mr. Brown intends to continue his education in the Conservatory of Music at Baldwin Wallace University  in Berea.

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

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

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

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

Garrettsville - The Friends of the Garrettsville Library announce a book sale (in the meeting room) at the Garrettsville Branch of the Portage County District Library June 16 – 21, during library hours. All proceeds from the book sale go to the Friends of the Garrettsville Library which helps fund collection development, programs for the public, and other things the library may need.

Saturday, June 14 will be a members only set-up day from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm. Monday, June 16 will be a members only set-up day and preview from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm. Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday June 17 – June 20 is open to the public during library hours. Saturday, June 21 is open to the public from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm.

Since the last book sale many new titles have been donated to the Friends of the Garrettsville Library and there will be a selection of adult, young adult, and children’s books, with fiction and non-fiction titles.  Memberships to the Friends’ group may be purchased leading up to and during the sale. If you are not a member, and wish to attend the members only pre-sale, you are welcome and encouraged to join the Friends of the Garrettsville Library. Memberships start as low as $5.

Materials that are left over from the book sale will be distributed to other organizations; new donations after the sale will be needed and greatly appreciated.

The library is located at 10482 South Street in the Village Park.  For further information, call the Garrettsville Library at 330-527-4378.  For additional information about library programs, materials, and services, please visit the Portage County District Library website at www.portagelibrary.org.

 

bikesHiram – The Hiram Police Department is educating children on the importance of wearing a bike helmet. Chief Ed Samec announced that the Hiram Police Department is participating in the AAA Helmet Smart Program again this year. Helmet Smart is a unique program for promoting bicycle helmet usage through positive reinforcement.  Hiram police officers will issue “safety citations” when they see children wearing a bike helmet while riding a bicycle. The “safety citations” can be redeemed at Hiram Gioninos, also AAA will also be holding drawings throughout the summer for children who mail a portion of their “safety citation” back to AAA. These children will have a chance to win new bicycles.

Every year more than 500,000 children are rushed to hospital emergency rooms due to bicycle injuries, with one third of the injuries being to the head and brain. In fact, head injuries are involved in nearly 85 percent of all bicycle fatalities. Children who do not wear their bike helmet are 14 times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash than children wearing a helmet. “It’s interesting to note that crashes happen close to home on sidewalks, in parks, on bike paths, or driveways and do not involve motor vehicles,” said Chief Samec. “We want to stress to children and parents a bike is a vehicle and not a toy. Using helmets reduces the risk of brain injury by 85 percent and can prevent tragic life-long consequences.

Hiram Village Mayor Lou Bertrand said, “There are a lot of children that enjoy riding bicycles in Hiram. I am a strong proponent of the Helmet Smart program and I am pleased that our police department takes a proactive approach to safety.”

Hiram police officers will be issuing the safety citations along with parent/child safety pledges, and example forms that show correct use of a bike helmet and literature.

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

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

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Ryan Louis Acker

Mikayla R. Ashba

Madison Claire Barber

McKenzie Marie Blau

Sasha Rose Brotman

Bianca Rae Brown

Lindsey Nicole Burnett

Courtney Karam Call

Cassandra Cameron

Tyler Alex Chapek

Cody Allen Charvat

Julie Anne Combs

Branden Matthew Conrad

MacKenzie Anne Cossick

Dominic Allan DeLuca

Julie Ann Dingman

Kaylee Ann Marie Evans

Kaitlyn Elena Freiling

Luke Anton Freiling

Joshua Michael Garrett

Mackenzie Elizabeth Gilliland

Max Franklin Gilliland

Breanna Marie Girolamo

Marc Alan Girolamo

Gage Kristopher Green

Jessica Cheyenne Hackett

Erica Rose Marie Harris

Brandon Donald Haycox

William Frederick Hess

Laura Marie Hinkle

Stephen James Horvath

Dakota James Kaschalk

Harley Henry Kelly

Charles Michael Kepich

Hunter Brooke Klarich

Edward Joseph Koziol

Jonathan Douglas Kreuz

Samuel John Kwasniewski

Amy Jane Lasco

Joseph S. Lencoski

Tia Marie Shoshanna Rose Maier

Timothy James Malkus

Lisa Michele Marcy

Keanu Anthony Samuel Martin

Megan Marie McCartney

Ian Loel McClellan

Caroline Marie Milano

Ryan James Miller

Nicholas Millet

Mike Thomas Molnar

Ian Matthew Moore

Alison Margaret Moss

Zachary Steven Motil

Peyton Elizabeth Neumore

Christian Hunter Pallagi

McKinley James Parker

Kathryn Elizabeth Paul

Kyle Andrew Pillar

Romolo Giuseppe Rabasi

Jonathon David Ramsey

Darren Keith Redd

Chelsea Nicole Reed

Olivia Lauren Roach

Priscilla Jessica Sandoval

Stephen Edwin Saurman

Dustin James Simmons

Ronald George Simpson

Steven Matthew Sitko

Branson Blaine Race Skidmore

Gabriela Mara Spangler

Devon Scott Stivers

Megan Thomas

Anthony Charles Tiber

Logan Davis Timmons

Katherine Rose Uterhark

Brandon James Vander Maas

Jason Anthony Voskion

Benjamin Alan Wiley

Joshua David Williamson

Gabriel Thomas Wilson

Emma Jane Yokules

Danielle Megan Young

 

Garrettsville – Garrettsville Summerfest is celebrating it’s tenth year and they are “Rockin’ to Rebuild” the section of Main Street that burned in the March fire. The theme this year is “Rockin to Rebuild” with a portion of the proceeds from this year’s festival going to the #GarrettsvilleStrong Fund which has been put in place to assist in the rebuilding.

Last year, Summerfest added a coloring contest, an essay contest and a photo scavenger hunt. They were so popular that they are back again this year. Some of these contests have early deadlines, so do not procrastinate.

The first one is easy. Grab a pencil, pen or key board and tell us what the past 9 years of Summerfest have meant to you  — or —  how the March fire has impacted you with regards to the changes our town has and will experience. (Choose one topic)  Be creative in telling your story. We have three age categories and word counts for each group. Ten – twelve year olds will need a 50 – 100 word essay; Teens 13 years old – 18 years old will need to write a 200 word essay; Adults, 19 and older will need 300 words.

You can mail or drop-off your essay at the Weekly Villager office located in downtown Garrettsville at 8088 Main Street Garrettsville, OH. 44231. Office hours are Monday – Wednesday and Friday 10 am – 5 pm, Thursday 12-5 and Saturday 10 – 2.  The last day to enter is June 20, 2014 by 5pm. All essays should be typed. No emailed essays will be accepted and we are not responsible for essays lost or delayed in the mail.

The younger kids will not be left out. We are offering a coloring contest for the kids 10 years old and under, broken down into the following categories, Preschool, 5 & 6 year olds, 7 & 8 year olds and 9 &10 year olds. A picture will be supplied and found on the Garrettsville Summerfest website at www.garrettsvillesummerfest.com. Colored pictures will be due on June 24, 2014 at the Weekly Villager at 8088 Main Street by 5pm.

Winning essays and pictures will be displayed during the festival and prizes will be awarded on June 27, 2014, during Opening Ceremonies of Summerfest.

Back by popular demand is the photo scavenger hunt. Gather a group of two, three or four friends or do it as a family, grab a camera or camera phone and snap pictures of items on our list. This is a festival activity and there is no charge to enter it. The list will be available at the information tent in the center of town and the contest will run all weekend long until 2 pm Sunday.  Stop by the information booth and register your group or family and pick up the list. Participants do not  need to attend the festival all three days to participate; there are bonus photos on the hunt that can replace specific events.  Most pictures will require at least one member of your group in them. You do not develop the pictures. When you have found all of them, bring your phone/ camera to the information tent, show us your pictures and we will verify them. Folks will need a minimum of 25 of the required items and then they will be entered into a drawing for festival bucks and for one free car raffle ticket for your group. Festivals bucks are tickets that can be used at any food vendor (excluding the  St. Ambrose’s Chicken Festival) during the festival.

We realize that not everyone can be here all weekend long and have made alternative pictures you can take to replace the scheduled events. Taking a picture of our many sponsors booth or team member with a logo can replace a special Summerfest event. Politician pictures can also replace a scheduled event.

Winners will be drawn at 3 pm on Sunday.

 

chamber-scholarshipGarrettsville – On June 4th the Garrettsville Area Chamber held their annual Scholarship Luncheon at Cal’s Restaurant.  Each year the Chamber awards three scholarships to graduating Garfield High School seniors.

Pictured above are the 2014 recipients of the scholarships.  Amber Wenger (right) will be attending Kent State University to study Nursing; Trevor Chambers (left) will be pursuing a degree in Safety Management at Slippery Rock University; Laura Wilburn (center) will attend Youngstown State and NEOMED  where she will be working towards her medical degree.

Congratulations and best of luck to all!

 

6-1-14 Emma and Travis

Emma Twardzik and Travis Gorby were selected as the 2013-14 Garfield High School “OHSAA Scholar Athletes of the Year”. Ironically they were both soccer players and have played together since 2005 on various travel teams, etc.

The criteria for the Award was.

1. Minimum of 3.25 or above G.P.A.

2. Minimum of Four Varsity Letters.

3. Three of the Varsity Letters must be in the same sport.

4. Must have taken either the ACT or SAT national tests  (Emma and Travis both scored above 27 on their ACT).

5. Team leader/Good role model.

 

 

 

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The Newton Falls Area Commerce Association opened its May meeting by relaying any communications received since the last assembly. This included an email sent by Robert Gensler, Jr., who could not attend the meeting, expressing his comments regarding the proposed changes to the bylaws that were submitted during previous meetings. His email stated that he recommends no changes at this time.

After the minutes from last month’s meeting were approved, old business was addressed. First up was the Finance Committee’s recommendation regarding the Kiwanis Labor Day Run sponsorship request presented at the April meeting. To ensure no appearance of a conflict of interest due to his involvement in many city events, President Lyle Waddell, who is also the town’s mayor, turned the direction of the meeting over to the Vice President for this discussion. After much conversation about the mission statement of the NFACA, the desire to support community events and causes, and how to effectively and fairly utilize the association’s budget, the membership ultimately rejected the Finance Committee’s recommendation of donating $75 in favor of a higher contribution. The membership voted to donate $300 which would place them in the second tier of sponsorship (according to the guidelines offered by the Kiwanis members) and provide a larger spot on the T-shirts for the sponsoring logo. Since this amount is over the $75 threshold, as stated in the existing bylaws, the amount endorsed by the membership will then be presented back to the Finance Committee which has ultimate approval. As a matter of housekeeping, during this time the financial report was also presented and approved.

A second topic up for discussion is the continued attempt at coordinating a Small Business Saturday event. Mr. Jim Drake of the town’s Parks and Recreation committee was present to relay information about a wine tasting scheduled for August 16th on the grounds around the Community Center from 2pm-11pm. The event, intended to raise money for beautifying the parks, will include a concert by G-Force and opportunities for businesses or vendors to be spotlighted through advertising sponsorship. Mr. Drake stated that they will be inviting wineries from all over Ohio to participate, so this might be a good opportunity for the chamber to become involved and help out as co-sponsors. After much discussion, the membership voted to co-sponsor the event in conjunction with Small Business Saturday, and Carol Sole, the chairperson for the SBS committee, will be meeting with Mr. Drake to find out exactly what that will entail.

The floor was then returned to President Waddell who continued the agenda with new business. A committee is needed to plan the annual summer picnic, so “Santa” Rick Kerlin and Councilwoman Nancy Hoffman were volunteered to assist in that. There will be further discussion on the details of the picnic and whether to open the event up to the community, instead of just the NFACA members and their families, at the next meeting. As a reminder, membership renewals are due by the end of the month. Also, by way of membership news, new members Gionino’s Pizza and Accurate Land Surveying, LLC were voted into membership.

Also at the afternoon’s meeting, Mr. Paul Woodard, the school district superintendent, mentioned the recent successful Senior Service Day which is already being looked forward to for next year. In an effort to beautify the town, the students did mulch and landscaping work around the parks, and are even willing to help businesses beautify their properties during the next service day. The work the students did was commended and it was relayed that there are great kids in town – as much as we see vandalism, there is the other side too and we have hard-working kids in our community. Before moving to the next item on the agenda, Mayor Waddell expressed his gratitude for the students’ efforts.

By way of the city manager’s report, Mr. Haney reminded everyone that the water tower is under renovation, during which it will be cleaned and refurbished. To be noted, the water pressure in town might be a bit lower for the time being, and the efforts are expected to be completed, probably within the next 4-5 weeks. As an added touch, the words “Newton Falls” will now be painted in orange and black letters on the side of the tower. Also of note, the new additional Senior Van has been approved at Eastgate and will now go to the state level where it should be about 3-4 months before the city learns whether it will be funded.

Before open discussion, time was given to the current Vice President, yours truly, so that I could announce to the group in person that due to pursuing career goals and focusing on other professional obligations I will not be renewing my membership at the end of the month. Since the membership term does not run the same as the election term, that meant I would be resigning as Vice President and someone would be needed to fulfill the remainder of my term until the election at the end of 2014. After my remarks, during which I expressed gratitude for the honor of serving as Vice President, Carol Sole was nominated and elected to complete the open term effective June 1st. Also allotted a moment for brief remarks, Police Chief Gene Fixler reflected on the recent levy attempt and reassured that “the police department is always going to be there to give you the best service we can.” He noted that although the levy did not pass, which will affect operations, they will continue to do their best to help out whenever they are needed. The department is also looking into starting a civilian auxiliary program to help direct traffic, etc. during emergencies or community events.

During the brief open discussion it was suggested again that to promote goodwill in the neighborhood a series of community awards should be established recognizing pleasant aspects of the area such as “Prettiest Garden”, etc. which would also help connect the association to the town.

The next NFACA meeting will be noon on Tuesday, June 10 at Roby Lee’s.

 

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

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

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

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

 

Hiram – At a recent meeting of the Hiram Village Council, Village resident Susan Merrill thanked Council for the effectiveness of the emergency siren that sounded during a recent storm. But she inquired as to how people without cell phones and radio or television reception would know when an emergency is over. This prompted a discussion about whether a long blast of the siren could signify an emergency, while another, shorter blast could signify an “all clear”. This topic will be discussed at the next Safety Committee meeting, and their recommendations will be presented to Council at an upcoming meeting.

Next, Township Trustee Kathy Schulda shared that the Township Trustees are in the process of reviewing a proposed contract between the Township and the Hiram Village Police Department. Under the terms of the contract, the Township would agree to hire the Village Police Department for 10 hours per week from June through December of 2014. This time would be spent on traffic enforcement, in high-visibility and targeted areas, and would not detract from services provided in the Village. The proposed effective date of the contract will be June 18th, allowing time for both Village Council and Township Trustees to approve this resolution. Currently, Township residents needing law enforcement assistance must call the Portage County Sherriff’s office.

Later, in his report, Mayor Bertrand reported that Chairman Norm Christley had canceled the Planning & Zoning meeting scheduled from May 6th due to no pending business. Further, he advised Council of his recommendation that the Village Recreation and Park Board request input from Todd Peetz at Regional Planning and Chris Craycroft from Portage Parks prior to putting forth proposed resolutions regarding the planned development of the Hiram School Park property. On the matter of the AMATS Sidewalk Grant, the Mayor reported that the Village received an estimate to construct the new sidewalks in Hiram at $336,000. This amount includes the cost of $43,515 in engineering fees, and an AMATS grant of $268,000, making the local cost share estimated at: $67,200. In addition, the Mayor noted that the Village is currently accepting bids to sell the old Fire Hall located near the Village Post Office. Bids will be opened at noon on June 9th.

Lastly, Mayor Bertrand noted that planning had begun for Hiram’s Fourth of July festivities. As in previous years, Dr. Willard Greenwood will be taking the lead, with assistance from Council member Chris Cobb, Fire Chief Bill Byers, Police Chief Ed Samec, Village Administrator Bob Wood, and additional volunteers. For more information, contact the Mayor’s office at (330) 569-7677.

In other news, it was noted that the Hiram Corner Store and Café, formerly known as Fire & Ice, has applied for a liquor license. Council approved the application, pending Zoning Inspector approval that the proposed usage is appropriate and in compliance with Village codes and ordinances. In legislation, Council approved Resolutions renewing an existing Tax Levy for EMS and Fire Fighting purposes, and authorized an agreement between the Village and the College for work on a hike and bike trail.

The next meeting of the Hiram Village Council will be held on Tuesday, June 10th at 7 pm.

 

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Morgan Aebischer

Stephanie Alexander

Ziad Al-Noubani

Daniel Anders

Kyle Angermeier

Trevor Baldwin-Hoobler

Brianna Bandy

Katie Bartlett

Shelby Baughman

Austin Bracken

Anna Brigham

Jessica Britton

Alan Broadwater

Simeon Brown

Marilyn Brunton

Samuel Buganski

Mason Butler

Victoria Carnahan

Trevor Chambers

Chase Chapman

Kaley Collins

Jared Damko

Cassie Daniels

John Davenport

Brandon Davis

Jamie Davis

Holly DeYoung

Olivia Doraski

Seth Duvall

Michael Ebie

Tessa Flattum

David Forgony

Ashley Freiberg

Christopher Gadus

Katlyn Gembicki

Krista Gholson

Caitlynn Gilles

Candace Glinski

Travis Gorby

Sasha Gough

Assyria Gray

Kevin Griggy

Racheal Gruszewski

Alec Hartman

Jewels Haylett

Ryan Hecky

Kyle Heim

Ethan Hoffmann

Zachary Hoffmann

Courtney Hood

Sarah Hyde

Adriene Kearney

Jessica Kelley

Megan Kenesky

Rebecca Kern

Erica King

Kayla Kuzniakowski

Yakira Lane

Jeffrey Lange

Thomas Learn

Andrew Lininger

Savannah Lorinchack

Tiffani Lucas

Nicole Lytle

Thomas Macerol

Fredrick Maxey

Skyy McCune

Whitney Miller

Joshua Moore

Alexandria Nowak

Sarah Perkins

Renee Perrault

Emily Perrine

Tyler Petersen

Roger Pierce

Nathan Pinson

Zachary Porcase

Kennedy Porter

Nathan Pratt

Edana Rankin

Megan Rohrbaugh

Karen Root

Cooper Roubic

Shay Sane

Dustin Savick

Jonathan Seaman

Kurt Selesky

Allison Seneff

Zachary Silvis

Kaitlyn Siracki

Zoey Smith

Jay Spencer

Summer Stevens

Shannon Stowe

Nicole Thompson

Brittany Thornton

Samantha Tubre

Emma Twardzik

Andrew Weisbarth

Amber Wenger

Laura Wilburn

Scott Williams

Anthony Workman

Mirsadies Yon

Shannon Young

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Ian Sterling Adams

Jacob Louis Agle

Victoria Hope Andexler

Clyde Douglas Arnett

Taylor Leigh Atkins

George William Baran

Landis Grant Bates

Douglas Guy Battiest

BreAnna Lee Benner

Carrigan Alyssa Benoit

Ryan Adam Bernhard

Tod Allen Bevilacqua

Lauren Olivia Bissell

Charles Wesley Blankenship

Megan Leann Blankenship

Mikayla Rae Blankenship

Tyler Richard Brady

Sarah Ann Bridgman

Kyle Stephen Brookover

Miranda Louise Brothers

Emily Katherine Bruyere

Travis James Burkett

Erin Marie Calvey

Brittany Renae Campbell

Samantha Lee Canepa

Samantha Rose Cannella

Jordan Ashland Carver

Danielle Raye Cavanaugh

Jenna Marie Cisar

Madison May Cochrane

Kyle Stanley Cox

Anthony James Crabtree

Matthew Thomas Czerny

Damon Conrad Daugherty

Alexander James DeHoff

Carolyn Ann Diczhazy

Kayla Faith Diroll

Erin Marie Dunkin

Morgan Jolene Engelhart

Daniel Troy Evans

Jessica Marie Felker

Brian Charles Ferguson

Michael Robert Fletcher

Mariah Lynn Focareto

Julianna Sereita Forster

Amanda Elizabeth Fosnight

Cheyenna Sky Frederick

Dustin Charles Friend

Tyler Joseph Gall

Mathew David Gerdes

Angela Marie Goodrich

Ashlea Josette Gopp

Meaghan Michelle Green

Nathan Perry Green

Mackenzie Diann Gregoire

Carley Renee Gross

Monica Elizabeth Groves

Matthew Dominic Gualtieri

Hannah Lynn Hall

Joshua Tyler Hampton

Dillon Scott Harmon

Eric Robert Harris

Amber Lynn Harrison

Holly Lynne Hays

Sierra Mae Hobbs

David Anthony Hocevar

Daniel Adam Holmberg

Ryan Michael Houpt

Christopher Keith Howell

Patrick Lee Hoyack

Brooke Nicole Hunter

Summer Nicole Hurd

Cody Joseph Imars

Kenn Edward Jackson

Alyssa Nicole Jaehn

Jonathan Thomas Jastal

Nicholas Steve Jelinek

Taylor Paige Jenkins

Kristen Elizabeth Jones

Nicholas Robert Kehres

Hannah Lee Kelley

John Roger Kilbourne

Daniel Jacob Klatik

Amanda Jane Krakowski

Victoria Eve Krause

Samantha Marie Kulish

Kayla Rita Kulla

Shawnee Nicole Kvasnicka

Nicholas Robert Labas

Elizabeth Rose LaMarca

Stacey Elizabeth Larch

Jose Francisco Lebron

Allison Renee Little

Kyle Thomas Lohr

Joshua Tyler Lorence

Jacob William Lovick

Randi Kristine Lyle

Matthew Allen Lyons

Danielle DeNyse Magyarics

John  Luke McCraw

Nolan Blake McGarvey

Taylor Courtney Michael

Marissa  Elizabeth Midgley

Darian Payton Milam

Abbey Melissa Milkovich

Arizona Rose Misseldine

Jacob Connor Monreal

Samantha Nicole Moore

Jenna Marie Morgenstern

Kathleen Yeva Murray

Conner Samuel Nemec

Alaina Marie Nuti

Olivia  O’Brien Cobb

Jack Edward Onders

Jonah Tyler Onuska

Brendan Jay Osborne

Dylan Ray Parker

Katey Irene Paxton

Nicole Chessie Perkins

Julia Louise Pfaff

Charles  James Phillips

Rebecca Margaret Pochedly

Gary Thomas Pope

Joseph Frank Prenosil

Rachel Marie Quesenberry

Chad Alan Randall

Clayton Austin Jesus Ramirez

Taylor Lynn Rector

Velonte Marquis Reddick

Carley Jean Reid

Joseph Donald Reyes

Mary Ruth Richards

Daryl Ross Riley

Challis Margaret Roberts

Anna Marie Claire Romano

Tyler Austin Roth

Skylar Sierra Scala

Dillon Errol Scott Schaefer

Ashley Nicole Seneff

Charles Francis Shahan

Kaitlyn Mackenzie Shahan

Ariel Nicole Sherry

Nathan Michael Silcox

Melissa Rose Skocdopole

Kaitlin Michelle Slaker

Makenzie Kenneth Snodgrass

Abigail Lynn Soltisz

Hanna Elizabeth Spencer

Emily Ann St. Hilaire

Dakota Lee Stanley

Jonathan Peter Stewart

Julianna Nicole Stewart

Raymond Michael Stewart

Henry Arnold Strahan

Zachary Ian Strenk

Reanna Leigh Szarka

Chase Marie Tayerle

Nicholas James Thomas

Katie Lynn Tibbs

Ashley Renee Todd

Craig Darrin Turner

Allison Rae Vannoy

Amber Lynn Vargo

Justin Martin Vaughan

Christopher William Vince

Deena Marie Vodila

Jacquelyn Renee Wagner

Aaron Richard Yonker

Nicholas John Timothy Zeleznik

Jake Anthony Zemaitis

Marisa Lynn Zolgus

Sarah Jane Zolgus

Logan Louis Zuponcic

HONORARY DIPLOMAS

Emeric De Sermet de Tournefort

Iya Erkenovna Tsedenova

 

Sherry Jones and Mayor Rick Patrick prepare to draw the winning ticket.

Sherry Jones and Mayor Rick Patrick prepare to draw the winning ticket.

Garrettsville – Months ago I challenged the James A. Garfield students to take an active part in a fundraising effort to kick off renovations to the schools’ athletic facilities. Our students accepted the challenge with great fervor, and I am proud to report that the “Challenge Raffle” winner was drawn at noon on Friday, May 30th by Mayor Rick Patrick in the James A. Garfield Board Office.  The winner of the $1,000 grand prize was Stephanie Kristoff. The winning ticket was sold to her by her son, kindergartner AJ Kristoff.

On behalf of the James A. Garfield Schools I would like to congratulate Mrs. Kristoff and thank everyone who sold and purchased tickets for the raffle.  I would also like to thank Mrs. Sherry Jones for organizing this successful effort.  Without her passion, organization and impeccable record-keeping we never would have been able to experience such success.

The final breakdown for the raffle is as follows:

Total Sales:  $28,260.00

Expenses:     $6,041.86

Net Profit:  $22,218.14

It is important to note that $4,173.14 of the expenses went directly back to the kids in the form of t-shirts, gift cards and a skating party at Roller Hutt.  These rewards kept the excitement and motivation going throughout the raffle.

With the funds collected, improvements will be made to the stadium this summer to make play safer for our athletes. As you drive by the stadium you will begin to see the following work taking place:

Phase 1 – Safety of players and fans – Total Cost:  $17,938.57

?  Replace wood posts and ropes with four foot safety fencing ($6,438.57)

?   Install new goal posts ($0 – donated by G-Men Foundation)

?  Stabilize visitor bleachers with a permanent concrete pad ($11,500)

?  Move field away from home bleachers by 10 feet ($0)

The remaining $4,279.57 will be deposited to the JAG All Sports Booster account and used for Phase 2, which will focus on the spectator experience.  The next steps for the project are outlined by the following Phases:

Phase 2 – Spectator seating

?  Purchase safety and ADA compliant aluminum bleachers

?  Construct new press box

Phase 3 – Fan experience

?  Construct new concession booths

?  Construct permanent ADA compliant restrooms

Phase 4 – Scoreboard and track

?  Construction of all-weather track

?  Installation of new field scoreboards

This is just the beginning of the work that needs to be done.  Our athletic facilities are tired and need attention. It is inspiring to see so many individuals working together toward the goal of making them safer and more enjoyable for our students and spectators.

As always, if you have any questions, please call me directly in the office (330.527.4336) or on my cell (216.534.7413).

 

Photo courtesy of Michele Elias

Photo courtesy of Michele Elias

Well.  Don’t miss the next one.

The next “do” at the Candlelight Winery, that is.  The recent evening featuring food trucks and other festivities was an unqualified success, with  only the Premier Crepes truck left standing by the end of the evening—the others had run out of food, they were so popular.  Entrees were available, so were dessert items, there was seating inside and outside, good reviews of just about everything were floating around.  There was a raffle supporting #GarrettsvilleStrong ; there was music—Steve Howell finished up the evening to general acclaim (There were inquiries about the good doctor’s next CD), mellow and entertaining.  Early on, the Fox Channel 8  TV crew was out to see how we country folk get on…very well, thank you.  The new landscaping focused on a pond with a fountain, gravel paths, strategically-located tables and firepits, a mix of sun and shade locations for the early evening  (The spanking-new coop and the chickens were a bonus).  Both locals and outlanders  looking for a good time seemed to be having a fine night out.  It got the Sheri Johnson seal of approval and Patrick Hayden’s celebration put an end to any dissent.  It was a swell occasion.  Watch for announcements of any future celebrations.  You don’t want to miss this much enjoyment this close to home.

Photo courtesy of Michele Elias

Photo courtesy of Michele Elias

Community EMS  and Chief Chris Sanchez put on a nifty little down-home parade on Saturday, May 31 which showed off some of the equipment used in life saving situations—squad vehicles, for instance—and the individuals charged with running the affairs of the EMS district(Mike Elias, John Zizka, Jeff Kaiser, Tracy Brunner) as well as units of the Garrettsville/Freedom/Nelson Volunteer Fire Department and visiting units from the Windham Joint Fire District.  The James A. Garfield Marching Pride played rousing tunes, the Grand Marshal, Fire Chief David Friess and the Garrettsville Police were all part of the show as well.  The whole extravaganza wound up at the Community EMS headquarters on Forest St., where hot dogs, beans, salads, chips and beverages were part of the picnic atmosphere.  There were even inflatables—a slide and a bounce house—for the kids.  Adults could participate in health screenings offered by the local University Hospitals staff.  It was all about our health—not simply emergencies.  Watch for it next year.

Then it was on to the Village Book Store, where author Laura Peskin was available to discuss and/or sign a copy of her new paperback book, Deep Cover Cleveland (Vol. I).  It’s an interesting book, chock-full of tidbits of history, prehistory, illustrations and even geology.  Since the State of Ohio has pretty much abandoned the serious study of Ohio’s history and geography, this is a nice little catch-up on the points that you might have missed.  Lots of local names dropped throughout keep the reader looking for more and learning along the way.

Photo courtesy of Village Bookstore

Photo courtesy of Village Bookstore

Village Book Store no doubt has more copies available for purchase, as well as other eclectic choices and you can find just about any special-order items that you might fancy.  Stop in and check out the selection.  There will be more authors making appearances through the year.  Stop and inquire.

Graduation was inspiring, as usual, and touching this year, as a memorial  diploma was awarded to the dad of Nick Stock, who died in a tragic auto accident.  “Gone but not Forgotten” about says it.

O.K., now that the ugly old asbestos siding is being removed from the 150+ year-old building downtown in preparation for its restoration, the advertising on the antique siding underneath can now be seen.  Pretty cool, actually, but I can’t make out all of the words.   I got, “CARRIAGES, WAGONS and SLEIGHS” on one space, “SEEDS and POTATOES (I think) on another and “FARM IMPLEMENTS” on the third but I think that there are at least two other words that I can’t decipher.  Anybody want to clue me in?  I think that it would be neat if “the look” could be maintained and the words restored “as is”.  It’s  a formidable old building—a survivor, so to speak– and as soon as the wreckage in the back is removed( More parking?), it may become the symbol of a rejuvenated downtown.  Not that carriages are likely to make a comeback….

And speaking of carriages…the improved situation for “horseless carriages”, all the way from Hiram  through Garrettsville to the Trumbull County line, due to the completion of the resurfacing of State Route 82 is a welcome change.  Should make SummerFest more enjoyable.   ROCKIN’ to REBUILD, indeed.  Now if the Liberty St. bridge could  just be finished a little bit ahead of schedule—the decking seems to be on right now—so that the World’s Largest Tractor Parade can be routed around there to disperse, we’ll be good to go.  TOTALLY!

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

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

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

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

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Kent –  The group REALIZE Firearms Awareness Coalition is hosting a FREE Firearms Appraisal Fair at the Ravenna VFW, 5998 New Milford Road, Ravenna Ohio on June 10 from 4:30 to 8:00 pm.

Multiple area gun shops will participate in the 2nd annual FREE firearms valuation event.  Area citizens are invited to bring their collectibles, family heirlooms, gun show finds and firearms that they have general questions about.   The event starts at 4:30 pm,  Attendance is free,  and no firearms will be bought or sold there.

Participating locations include:  Targething Pro Shop-Garrettsville, Jansen Brothers Hardware- Mantua, Sporting Defense-Brimfield,  The Gunrunner Auctions – Burton and a variety of expert / specialists.

Amanda Suffecool,  Director of REALIZE  Firearms Awareness Coalition, said “We are pleased to have the VFW Post 1055’s support in hosting this educational event.  It’s not often that we have multiple somewhat competing businesses working together in one location.  This is not a buy/sell event, but a real opportunity to get various opinions on the value of your items. “

She went on to say “Firearms are an investment and REALIZE Firearms Awareness Coalition takes its charter seriously in the area of education.   We want to help folks in understanding the value of the firearm in your gun safe, closet or the box under the bed.”  And there is always that old bumper sticker line of  “ I sure hope my wife sells my guns for what they are worth, and not what I told her I paid for them.”

REALIZE Firearms Awareness Coalition presents seminars on a monthly basis. Each of the monthly programs features a local expert offering their perspective and expertise and covers a topic that is of interest to the firearms community.   On the docket for this year is a “CAR Shoot”,  a program on the use of pepper-spray for self defense and a concealed carry fashion show.

garrettsvillestrongdonationGarrettsville –   Last week, students of the upper campus at Warren John F. Kennedy Catholic High School collected money for the food cupboard in Garrettsville, which had burned down during the March 22nd fire. One of the students of this school, Bart Kitko, lives locally in Garrettsville & responded to the office of Mission and Ministry at the school, Mrs. Dolan Dixon, to help with this collection. Several students purchased the Garrettsville strong tee-shirts in order to bring awareness to the destruction of the many businesses the fire had caused.

On Friday, May 30, several of the students, including Bart Kitko, brought the school’s offering –$322.75 to the founder of the cupboard, Mike Elias.

Mantua – At the last meeting of the Mantua Village Council, Village resident Jim Oster, requested Council’s approval on behalf of the DMRC, to post a banner spanning Main Street to promote the Art on the Hill event. Council agreed unanimously to grant this request, pending Zoning approval, specifying that the banner is removed three days after the event. DMRC has already received approval from the two landowners where the proposed banner would be affixed. Art on the Hill will take place in Mantua on Saturday, July 12th from 10 am – 6 pm.

In addition, Beth Sluka spoke to Council on behalf of the Mantua Potato Festival Committee. Ms. Sluka requested permission for the Festival to have fireworks at this year’s event. The proposed location across the river from Buchert Park, near the service building, was deemed unsafe, as it is too near the propane pipeline. The Potato Festival Committee will work with the Mayor, Village Administrator, Police Chief and Fire Chief to identify another, more-suitable location.

In other news, the Soapbox Derby will be held at the Buchert Park on Saturday, June 14th. The race takes place on High Street, near the park. Later that month, the Boy Scouts will hold a flag burning ceremony in conjunction with American Legion Post 193 at the Park on June 21st at 11 am. Any wishing to properly dispose of an American flag that has been worn beyond repair is encouraged to bring it to the Park and take part in the ceremony.

In her Financial Report, Fiscal Officer Jenny August reported that $100 was donated to the park fund by Dave Pifer in memory of his sister, Ruthie Pifer Aldrich. In addition, $1,290 was donated to the Cemetery Board in her honor. A public hearing was scheduled on June 17th at 6:45 pm for the purpose of approving and adopting a permanent budget for 2015. This hearing will be immediately followed by the regularly scheduled Council meeting.

Council is entertaining a Resolution for a five-year, 3.85 MILL tax levy for general construction, resurfacing, and repair of streets, roads, and bridges within the Village. The proposed levy would cost taxpayers an estimated $12 per $100,000 home. Lastly, Village Engineer Rich Iafelice reported that his team had visited the water treatment and wastewater treatment plants. They have developed a list of necessary repairs and will work with Council to prioritize the tasks and funds needed. Some of the projects and costs involved may help the Village qualify for a grant through Ohio Public Works Commission.

Councilman Bill Zoller reported, on behalf of the Fire Board, that Mantua-Shalerville Fire Department received an upgrade to its Insurance Services rating. Based on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the best ranking, Departments are judged on performance, speed, efficiency and training. As of May 1st, 2014, the MSFD now ranks at a 4/4y. The last score received by the MSFD was a ranking of 6/9 in 1994.This phenomenal improvement in ISO rating should lead to a decrease in insurance premiums for property owners in the Mantua-Shalersville community.  Residents are encouraged to contact their insurance companies to determine if the new ISO rating will decrease their premiums.

The next regularly scheduled meeting of the Mantua Village Council is Tuesday, June 17th at 7 pm.

 

Garrettsville – The Brittany Myers Scholarship Fund was founded in 2001 as a memorial to Brittany, a 9 year old little girl who lost her life in a tragic car accident in 2000. Brittany attended James A. Garfield Elementary School where she was an avid softball player and a complete joy to everyone. Left behind are her parents, Tom and Belinda Myers, along with siblings and many loved ones.

The Brittany Myers Memorial Poker Run is held on the first Saturday in August.  This event generates the monies for the scholarship program in which two scholarships are awarded each year to graduating seniors at James A. Garfield High School. Students’ GPA, community service, academic and athletic achievements, future goals and a 300 word essay are taken into consideration when choosing the winners. This year’s recipients are Amber Wenger and Cooper Roubic.  Congratulations seniors!

In addition to the annual scholarships, the fund has also contributed to the Youth Softball League and the Special Needs Program at James A. Garfield School.

For more information on the fund raiser, or to make a donation, please feel free to contact Jamie Cain at (330)221-6338.

 

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Geauga County has been experiencing an increase in the needs of families and children in the past several years. This has caused the demand for certified foster and adoptive parents to increase as well. There are many families in crisis in our own neighborhoods that require the supportive services of our agency. You and your family could be part of the support.

Children need a nurturing family that can provide them with stability, love, and guidance, while their own family works on making positive changes, so they can be reunified.

Consider becoming a foster and/or adoptive family for the Geauga County children who need and deserve your support. The agency will walk you through the process of becoming certified, providing support along the way.

There will be an information meeting on Monday June 16, 2014, at 10:00 am, at the Chardon Public Library, located at 110 East Park St., Chardon, Ohio.  Please RSVP by June 13, 2014 to Amanda Ward at 440-285-1205, or email at warda01@odjfs.state.oh.us.

 

dday2014It’s not “Saving Private Ryan” or “The Longest Day” or “Band of Brothers” but it is a commemoration of one of the greatest military operations in the history of warfare, which we all know, to our sorrow, has stretched across millennia.  D-Day, June 6, 1944 brought together Allied forces from the United States, Canada, Britain and the Free French partisans to storm ashore to begin the liberation of France and the end of the Axis presence in western Europe.  It was preceded by months of code-breaking, prevarication (Operation Bodyguard) and preparation.  It culminated on the beaches (Operation Neptune) — Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno, Sword—as part of Operation Overlord.  The greatest seaborne invasion in history is being remembered by world leaders, politicians, royalty, historians, and survivors (About 300 American veterans are expected to attend);  those survivors are growing fewer every year, by the seventy-fifth anniversary of the event, virtually all will be gone.

We have some local “skin in the game.”  Airborne Infantryman Alex Gerez, James A Garfield High School graduate, is  a part of the group that is involved in the  re-enactment scheduled to take place on this historic occasion, probably the last commemoration of its kind.  There will be a mass parachute drop, memorial services, tributes , speeches and remembrances.  Some  650 American military personnel will be taking part in various events.  One of our own carries on his broad shoulders the pride we all feel in the events and outcome of that momentous day so many years ago.

D-Day, June 6, 1944

D-Day, June 6, 2014

 

garrettsville-street-beats

Pictured above (left to right) are Eric Eiermann, Ryan Everett, Mark Butto and Nick Crawford.

Garrettsville – Last year, the Street Beats drum line made their debut at Garrettsville Summerfest using boom whackers and performing as an impromptu flash mob through out the entire weekend.  After a few performances, they developed a following and folks began to ask “Who are they? When will they perform again?” This led to a sudden rise in popularity until Summerfest ended, and the group sort-of disappeared as far as the public was concerned.

The Street Beats are a drumming group that was birthed when Nick Crawford saw a similar group at in 2012 while he was on vacation. Nick organized a group of fellow percussionists and began writing music, and doing the choreography for them to practice, with the ultimate goal of performing at Summerfest.  The group held organized practices bi-weekly with many impromptu practices in between and then debuted at Garrettsville Summerfest in 2013.

The original group was comprised of James A. Garfield percussionists, Nick Crawford, Eric Eiermann, Chad Curry, and Mark Butto, however this year they added Ryan Everett when Chad’s schedule no longer permitted him to participate.

Nick was the organizer of the group and has quite a music history. Nick began to show an interest in music at a very early age. He started off playing the piano. In fifth grade, he tried out for percussion for the school band and has been drumming on everything since. Since that time, he’s played with the Notre Dame Indoor Percussion Ensemble for two years. He’s performed in numerous piano recitals. He played at NEOUCOM for a business dinner, played in the high school musicals as part of the orchestra, and for local churches as a substitute pianist. And most recently, he became a member of the Bluecoats Drum Corp.

Mark Butto has been drumming on just about any surface he can find since he was about six years old, when his older brother Nick taught him how to play and he hasn’t stopped since. One time, Mark got four paint cans and practiced playing them (like the quads) and then decided to bring the paint cans in the house and dropped the cans and paint spilt all over our dining room floor. The family got it all cleaned up but he will never live that one down! His teachers say they have to tell him to stop drumming on the desk with his pencil. Mark plays quads in the marching band, drums in the jazz band and drums for the youth band and worship team at his church (Life Church). His newest adventure is playing the snare drum for the Geauga Highlanders Pipe and Drum Band.

Eric Eiermann is the third member of the group. Eric started off playing the trumpet in the school band. In his second year of band, he switched to the drums. He currently plays the snare drum for the James A. Garfield High School Marching Pride and will be a senior next fall.

Ryan Everett is the newest member to the group and will be a senior next fall at James A. Garfield Schools. Ryan is the son of Casey and Shelley Everett and has been involved in music since he was very young. He started with the keyboards; he now plays the drums, the ukulele and bongos. His mother claims it can be a little noisy at their house as he drums on everything, using whatever he can find including pencils, silverware and such. Ryan is unsure what avenue he will take when he goes to college in 2015.

The Street Beats will once again be performing at Summerfest in flash-mob style. Come out and watch these young men as they dazzle you with their drumming talents and choreography. The guys may march to the beat of a different drum but they easily mesmerize a crowd.

Garrettsville Summerfest will begin Friday night June 27th and runs until Sunday night June 29, 2014.