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Newton Falls - Geauga Family Farms, a cooperative of 10 certified-organic family farmers in Geauga County, has added a Trumbull County location to the list of convenient pick-up sites for members of its Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.

Healthy Treasures, at 40 W. Broad St. in Newton Falls, is partnering with Geauga Family Farms to provide a place for co-op members to pick up fresh, locally grown produce. Healthy Treasures is a locally-owned family business celebrating 20 years of supplying natural and organic products to its customers. GFF’s organically grown vegetables fit right in with this mission.

The CSA model provides a way for consumers to purchase local food directly from a farm by entering into a contract with the farmer. CSA members become partners with a farm by paying up-front for a subscription, or “share,” of produce that is received weekly during the 20-week growing season from June through October. By investing in the farm at the beginning of the growing season, members provide financial support to the farm when it is most needed for seeds, supplies, labor, etc.

Members choose a nearby location at which to pick up their weekly share, such as the new site at Healthy Treasures where they can pick up from 4 to 7 p.m. on Tuesdays. This site is in addition to other pickup sites in Middlefield, Lakewood, Macedonia, Seven Hills, Parma, others all over Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake and Summit counties. The produce is picked within 24 hours of delivery. For a complete list of pickup sites, visit geaugafamilyfarms.org.

It’s easy to get a share of this year’s crop: just fill out a membership form online or mail it in by May 15 with a check. Find the forms on the farms’ Web site at geaugafmailyfarms.org or by e-mailing LDobson@geaugafamilyfarms.org.

If you are looking for fresh organic produce grown by farmers you know, in a sustainable, certified-organic way, shake the hands that feed you at Geauga Family Farms and put a face on your farmer. From seed-starting to harvest, you’ll know who, how, where and when your food was grown and picked.

For CSA membership forms, more information on Geauga Family Farms, or to set up an interview with one of our farmers or farm representatives, e-mail LDobson@geaugafamilyfarms.org or call Laura Dobson at 440-478-9849.


Windham Twp. – The Windham Township Trustees met for their regularly scheduled meeting on May 1, 2014 with all trustees, fiscal officer, five residents and one guest in attendance. The trustees approved the minutes and expenditures for the month of April.

This old church on Silica Sand  Road  has  been the subject of complaints and discussions over the course of the year, especially the last two trustee meetings. The trustees are looking into getting a Community Block Grant to have the structure demolished.

This old church on Silica Sand Road has been the subject of complaints and discussions over the course of the year, especially the last two trustee meetings. The trustees are looking into getting a Community Block Grant to have the structure demolished.

Mark Russell from Ellerhorst Russell Insurance was in attendance to review the insurance policy that is up for renewal. After some questions, and then a discussion, the trustees approved the policy with amendments. The fiscal officer will add the amendments before the policy is signed.

In roads, Supervisor Brian Miller said he has been in contact with the Portage County Engineers and it appears there may be some Ohio Public Works Funds available for the township to use for resurfacing roads. Miller suggested Bryant Road. After some discussion, the trustees thought Colton Road should be considered as well. Miller will also have a representative from the engineer’s office look at Colton Road and see if either or both roads would qualify for the funding. Dann Timmons reported that he is in the process of talking to the property owners on Frazier Road before they proceed with Mr. Soinski’s proposed cul-de-sac. In other road news, the township workers have been kept busy during the rain, by cleaning up trash, trimming back trees and brush along the sides of the roads.

In cemetery news, Trustee Rich Gano received the pins to lay out more graves and as soon as it dries up a bit he will get them done. They also have 20 graves that will need foundations poured this month.

The trustees are in charge of this year’s Memorial Day Services and will ask Lt. Col. Ed Meade from Camp Ravenna to be the speaker.  Timmons will contact Lt. Col. Ed Meade to see if he is available, along with the usual participants, Gano will handle the parade line-up and Miller will get the cemetery set up for the service.

In zoning, Joe Pinti reported that there have been no new permits written but many inquiries on decks, fencing and such.  The trustee received proposed zoning changes from the zoning commission and will hold a public hearing on the issues on Wednesday, May 21, 2014 at the town hall at 7 pm.

Timmons reported that they heard from Mark Finamore on a ruling on the alleged breach of contract by the village, when they discontinued dispatch services to the fire district contract. Finamore believes there is some village liability there and if they wanted to proceed with legal action they could. After some discussion on the matter, the trustees have decided to share the opinion with the fire board for review. In other safety issues Timmons reported that the fire board decided to go with a 4 mill renewal levy on the November ballot rather than increase it.

In old business, the township clean-up went well. Miller inquired where the township stood on the old church on Silica Sand Road. Gano said as soon as he determines who owns it he will proceed with trying to obtain a Community Block Grant to have it torn down. Timmons said the auditor’s records should be able to tell who owns it. Gano will start there and see if they can’t get the matter resolved.

In other township news, the trustees approved Bill Isler’s proposal to remove the light poles from the “Township Green” and they also approved the acquisition of a debit card for the township use.  The fiscal officer reported that due to the Affordable Care Act, the township now has to tax, the reimbursements to its employees for healthcare costs.

The meeting was adjourned and the June meeting will be held on June 5, 2014 at the town hall at 7pm.


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Middlefield - Cold-hardy plants are already in the ground at the 10 farms owned by the farmers of Geauga Family Farms. GFF is a co-op of 10 farmers who grow certified-organic produce for their community supported agriculture (CSA) program.

CSA members pay up front for the weekly box of produce, or share, they receive weekly for 20 weeks from June to October. This allows the farmers to buy seeds and pay for any labor needed to get the crops in the ground. In return, members enjoy truly fresh, locally grown vegetables.

Members choose from three sizes of shares that can be picked up weekly atHealthya GFF farm on Bundysburg Road in Middlefield.

The farmers harvest the vegetables, pack them in boxes, and have them ready for pickup within 24 hours. Simply choose a share size, and in early June members start receiving veggies – lettuces, green onions, and radishes will start off the season. In midsummer members see tomatoes, sweet corn, peppers, beans, potatoes and melons in their shares, with cabbage and squash in the fall.

Many farms mean a wider variety. This region is able to produce an amazing array of vegetables. GFF farms grow more than 50 types of vegetables, and multiple varieties of many of them.

Participating in a CSA program encourages members to try new vegetables. Members talk about how participating in a CSA has taught them to eat new and different things and changed how they eat for the better.

There has been much discussion of GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, lately. GMOs are plants whose genetic material has been altered to withstand direct application of herbicide. GFF farmers are committed to the stewardship of earth’s resources, and since each of the GFF farmers grows certified-organic vegetables, you won’t find any GMO food in your share.

GFF also offers eggs, maple syrup, honey, baked goods and more. Members have access to chicken, turkey and grass-fed beef as well.

Other sites are in Cleveland Heights, downtown, Kirtland, Lakewood, Lyndhurst, Macedonia, Mentor, Painesville, Parma, Seven Hills, Shaker, Solon, Willoughby Hills and the Beachwood area.

Sign up for your share by May 15. For more info, visit www.geaugafamilyfarms.org or contact Laura Dobson at 440-478-9849, LDobson@geaugafamilyfarms.org.



Photo provided by Michelle Gerbrick

Photo provided by Michelle Gerbrick

Mantua – Recently, students at the Crestwood Intermediate School received a surprise gift of technology to help them with their studies. According to Crestwood Intermediate Principal Michelle Gerbrick, the school recently received an anonymous donation of over $10,000. The donation was earmarked to purchase a computer cart and thirty laptops for student use. The cart also serves as a charging station for the laptops.

The cart enables an entire classroom with enough computer workstations for each student, offering more opportunities for access to technology. In the past, each class has been limited to a brief, weekly Technology class in the school’s computer lab. The cart is used in CIS classrooms, from grades three through five.

“The lab will come in handy for testing, integrating technology into the classroom, and so much more.” beamed Crestwood Intermediate Principal Michelle Gerbrick. The gift to the Crestwood Intermediate School was made possible through a generous donation from an anonymous benefactor from Aurora.


armstrong-burial-arlington-vietnam-veteranArlington, VA - Decorated Vietnam War hero and Class of 1965 Garfield High School graduate Robert Earl Armstrong was buried with full military honors at Arlington Cemetery on April 25. Serving with the U.S. Army’s 4th Infantry Division in 1969, then-Sergeant Armstrong distinguished himself in two separate incidents.  In  one – a massive ambush in the Mang Yang Valley – he stepped up to take command of his platoon after all officers and other NCOs were either killed or wounded.  In recognition of his bravery and resourcefulness, the United States awarded him the second highest U.S. military honor for valor, the Distinguished Service Cross.  In the other separate incident, near Polei  Kleng, Armstrong’s  extraordinary efforts to save other squad members earned him the third highest honor for valor, the Silver Star.  His heroism also earned him the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry, with silver cross, and a Purple Heart.  Armstrong died in October 2013 in North Carolina.

After returning from Vietnam seriously wounded, this American hero took every opportunity to honor and help every  veteran he encountered in the ensuing 43 years.  He was instrumental in the building of the Mecklenburg County Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Charlotte, North Carolina, and was the author of the inscriptions on the face of that memorial.  Despite challenging health issues over much of his adult life, Armstrong traveled  to Washington, D.C. on Veterans Day and Memorial Day each year, to honor those fallen whose names are inscribed on the Vietnam War Wall on the Mall.

In addition to his widow Susan (Maher) Armstrong, sons Mark and Troy and their wives and children, and brother Jeffrey Armstrong, more than 40 other family and friends, former comrades, other veterans, and Garrettsville classmates attended the services at Arlington.

missy-steele-garrettsville-ceramic-mugGarrettsville - This view of Garrettsville is especially important to ceramic artist Missy Steele who moved from Garrettsville to Pittsburgh when she was 18, but still has family is still here. “This is where I did most of my growing up, and this is where I return for holidays and special occasions. Honestly, it’s the place I still call home.” says Steele.

When glazing the mugs it was important to Steele to recreate her view of Main Street, arriving from the East. Steele chose to recreate a view that she would see on any given trip—busy with cars visiting Garretsville’s many local shops and businesses, an open sky scattered with clouds. A typical afternoon in Garrettsville. This is the way Steele will remember Main Street.

Each mug is handcrafted on the potter’s wheel; a handle is then made and attached. Every detail is painted on by hand, and the mug is fired once before glaze is applied and once after. No molds are used in Steele’s process, and the glazes are mixed by hand. No commercial materials are used. For Steele, these mugs were an effort of love and she has dedicated her time to making each one special and unique. No two are exactly alike.

As soon as Steele heard about the fire, she knew that she wanted to help in some way. Living in Pittsburgh, she knew there wasn’t a lot that she could do locally, but by creating one-of-a-kind mugs Steele could help generate more funds than she would be able to donate on her own.

While supplies last, you can purchase a limited edition, hand-made, Garrettsville mug for a minimum donation of $35. Mugs are available for purchase at the Weekly Villager/Chamber of Commerce Office located at 8088 Main Street or the Garrettsville Branch of Middlefield Bank located at 8058 State Street. 100% of your donation goes to the GarrettsvilleStrong fund. The mugs are microwave safe, dishwasher safe, and, of course, food safe.

Missy Steele is a 2004 graduate of James A. Garfield Local Schools, and a 2014 graduate of Carlow University in Pittsburgh, receiving her Bachelor of Art degree in Ceramics.


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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Garrettsville – Sky Plaza IGA announces the closure of the fuel station at 8283 Windham Street, with the last day of operation being targeted as May 31st. Customers may continue to earn Fuel Rewards, however they must be redeemed by the close of this location.

The closure permits Sky Plaza IGA to focus efforts on their grocery store operation – further enhancing the shopping experience and delivering full service grocery services to residents of Garrettsville and the surrounding community.

Sky Plaza has been locally owned and operated by Rich Hoffman since 2008. Rich is dedicated to our local area and keeping local businesses strong and viable. Throughout the summer, Sky Plaza IGA will be donating a portion of their sales of IGA Water (24 pack bottles) to support the Garrettsville Strong campaign.

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Portage County - The Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation awarded a $100,800 grant to the Mental Health & Recovery Board of Portage County, Valley Counseling in Trumbull County and Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health in Stark County to implement a tested treatment program using consumer feedback to help counselors adjust therapy as needed for the best possible results.

The three-year grant to set up the Feedback Informed Treatment (FIT) program will impact the work of more than 200 therapists seeing consumers at six Northeast Ohio mental health agencies including four in Portage County: Coleman Professional Services, Townhall II, Family and Community Services, Inc. and Children’s Advantage.

“Patients are more dedicated when they know their opinion matters on whether or not treatment is working,” said Thom Craig, Director of Mental Health Programs for The Margaret Clark Morgan Foundation. “Counseling is most effective when the voice of the patient is valued, and FIT makes this routine. This project is especially exciting because it emphasizes fundamental values, like patient empowerment and genuine listening, making them visible throughout the counseling relationship. Together patient and counselor can track measurable growth.”

Based on 40 years of research, the FIT program is an evidence-based practice, a model which uses the best available clinical research and takes the diversity of the consumer into consideration.  FIT combines the use of a web-based evaluation tool called MyOutcomes with extensive training for therapists and continual consultation support by the creators of FIT.

Mental Health & Recovery Board Executive Director Joel Mowrey, who co-authored the grant, said the use of both FIT and the web-based evaluation tool will help consumers evaluate their own progress and describe improvements or problems that they are experiencing in treatment.

“Therapists will be able to take that feedback and make adjustments to treatment right away. That ultimately benefits the client’s mental health and his or her relationship with the therapist, fostering trust and moving forward with recovery,” said Mowrey.

An internationally-recognized licensed software program, MyOutcomes enables consumers to track their treatment progress and relationship with their therapist by using two different measuring systems. Consumers then obtain instantaneous reports about both their current and past progress and have a visual representation of their improvement or of the problems they are encountering.

“The FIT model creates a healing environment based on feedback that helps consumers focus on improvement and moving therapy along by identifying goals and measuring progress toward these goals. Therapists are then able to redirect sessions as needed. FIT has an excellent track record,” Mowrey added.

FIT incorporates the work of Dr. Scott D. Miller, the founder and director of the International Center for Clinical Excellence in Chicago. ICCE is an international consortium of clinicians, researchers, healthcare managers and educators dedicated to promoting excellence in behavioral health services.

FIT is an integral part of the Partners for Change Outcome Management System (PCOMS) that was recently approved by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) as an evidence-based practice.  FIT was given the highest rating possible by SAMHSA for easy implementation with detailed training manuals for therapists, support from Miller and his group and trainings.

FIT has been implemented by four other mental health and recovery board areas in Ohio at community behavioral health treatment agencies funded by the boards, as well as nationally and internationally.


hiram-pancakes-for-kidsHiram - On April 19th the Hiram Police Department held its annual Pancake Breakfast fund raiser for the “Shop with a Cop” program. The event was a success in that $755.00 was raised for the program. “Our Shop with a Cop program (Hiram and Garrettsville) is one of the biggest programs of the year. The Shop with a Cop program provides Crestwood/Garfield School District children, and their families, the opportunity to enjoy the holiday season. The program is designed for less fortunate and under privileged children to go Christmas shopping, for themselves and families, with a police officer. The program brings about much heartfelt joy to a lot of area children and families. Our goal is that every child gets the chance to enjoy the holiday season.” Chief Ed Samec said. The Pancake Breakfast had a surprise visit from the Easter Bunny and was a huge hit with the kids. Special THANK YOU to Hiram College, AVI’s Diane, Beth, and Lindsey, Windswept Farms, Maggie’s Donuts, the Easter Bunny, and all of the people who attended and graciously support the event. “I am overwhelmed at all of the support and encouragement that Hiram Police Department receives from the community, it really is heartwarming that so many people believe in us and our community programs”.

skylanes bowling smart scholarship event

Garrettsville – SkyLane Bowling Alley recently held their 3rd Annual SMART Scholarship Tournament.  All of the Youth bowlers competed on  April 19th for a chance to win $800 in scholarship money.   Collin McGurer was the runaway winner by rolling an all-time 719 series.  Pictured from left to right are Ryan Ambler – 3rd Place ($100), Collin McGurer –Champion ($500),  and Wilson Jackson – Runner-up ($200).


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Garrettsville – At Wednesday’s meeting of the Garrettsville Area Chamber of Commerce, the Board of Directors provided a fund status report for the fund. Erika Frankel, Treasurer, announced that as of May 6, 2014 the GarrettsvilleStrong fund stood at $46,370. This number reflected the total amount deposited as of the meeting date, and did not include anticipated deposits not yet received.

In an effort to improve transparency Chamber President Benjamin Coll announced that beginning Friday, a weekly fund status would be provided on the GarrettsvilleStrong page of the Chamber’s website.

Following the Chamber of Commerce meeting, the board of directors entered into executive session to review proposed guidelines for distribution of GarrettsvilleStrong funds. These guidelines are being established  with  the guidance of the Ohio Attorney General, and will  be reviewed by legal counsel prior to a  formal announcement of how fund distribution will occur.

The Garrettsville Area Chamber of Commerce board of directors established the GarrettsvilleStrong fund on Monday, March 24th to raise funds, which will be utilized to facilitate the rebuilding of the northeastern block of downtown Garrettsville affected by the fire March 22, 2014. This area is located on Main Street between Center and High Streets.

Alex Gage had the top series for the 9:00 Trio with 392; Alex rolled games of 112, 131, and 149.  High game was Paige Collins with 152.  Zach Seebacher had a nice 139 game and 368 series.  Ryleigh Gough was 42 pins over average with her 132 game.  Other nice games:  Emily Linamen, 116 (40 over), Damian Tourville, 96 (35 over), Eric Schaefer, 99 (28 over), and Sara Barker, 100 (27 over).

For the 11:00 Trio, Kassie Fedor topped the leader board with a 200 game and 514 series.  Jacob Britton had  a nice 192 game and 512 series.  Ian Huebner’s 124 game was 51 pins over average.  Adding to the list of good games:  Lauren Sanchez, 183 (50 over), Lucas Titschinger, 165 (35 over), Billy Potteiger, 163 (31 over), Barrett Jackson, 159 (29 over), Peyton Sledz, 92 (28 over), Travis Pennington, 96 (27 over), Wilson Jackson, 134 (26 over), and Clark Jackson, 151 (25 over).

Jake Yeatts had the high series for the Scholastic League with 646; Jake rolled games of 201, 243, and 202.  Collin McGurer rolled 266 his first game and ended up with a 636 series.  Other nice scores:  Olivia Doraksi, 214-597, Bradley Woodrum 213-598, Ryan Ambler 209-614, Jaret Doraski, 204, Noah Shannon, 204, Zach Britton, 201, Jessica Potteiger, 198, Angela Piazza, 193, Billy Potteiger, 186, Danielle Tuttle, 186, and Lauren Sanchez, 182.

Pete Maldonade had the top scores for the PeeWees with games of 121 and 103.  Memphis English shot 103 and Hunter Turnbaugh and Piper Johannsmeier each shot 101.





12th Grade

All A’s – Morgan Aebischer, Ziad Al-Noubani, Simeon Brown, Holly Deyoung*, Michael Ebie, Tessa Flattum, Candace Glinski, Andrew Lininger, Savannah Lorinchack, Sarah Perkins, Nathan Pratt, Jonathan Seaman, Kaitlyn Siracki*, Brittany Thornton, Laura Wilburn


3.2 & Above – Kyle Angermeier, Shelby Baughman, Marilyn Brunton, Trevor Chambers, Jared Damko, Seth Duvall, Caitlynn Gilles, Travis Gorby, Courtney Hood*, Erica King, Thomas Learn, Nicole Lytle, Skyy McCune*, Whitney Miller, Emily Perrine, Tyler Petersen, Kennedy Porter, Shay Sane*, Dustin Savick*, Kurt Selesky, Zoey Smith, Summer Stevens, Emma Twardzik,  Andrew Weisbarth, Amber Wenger*


11th Grade

All A’s – Allyson Brahler, Courtney Chartier, Alexis Dean*, Ante-Tonci Dejanovic, Alexandria Gibson, Elizabeth Gilbert, Aubrey Gissinger, Kourtney Holcomb, Austin Johnson, Julia Layer, James Mallory*, Joshua Masters*, Molly Mathews, Leah Maxey, Marcus Miller, Seth Miller, Sara Petrie, Noah Reider, Dakota Van Oss


3.2 & Above – Brittany Alloway, Zarah Al-Noubani, Todd Barton, Jason Brookover, Akane Brown, Victoria Butcher, Nicholas Crawford, Chad Curry, Eric Eiermann, Ryan Everett, Daniel Forcier*, Elizabeth Gerez*, Baylee Grenzow*, Miranda Hayden, Lindsey Jones, Evan Kehoe, Rebecca Kirk, Kenadi Kissell, Dalton Lamb*, Mason Maddox, James Meadows*, Dacy Myers*, Ryan Pawlus, Emily Prigodich, Jason Richmond, Julia Roubic, Rachel Schwan, Erin Shea, Taylor Stubbs*, Alaina Thompson, Melissa Thompson, Evelyn West, Cassidy White, Megan Wilburn, Chase Zupancic


10th Grade

All A’s – Haley Damko, Rikki Davis, Darla Derthick, Nicholas Downing, Nathan Emens, Madisson Geddes, Samantha Kostrub, Racheal Norris, Adam Roman, Megan Ryser, Alexandrea Synnestvedt, Sean Tannehill, Hannah White, Alicia Witte, Abigail Woolard


3.2 & Above – Blake Albert, Amanda Bartlett, Robert Bissler, Brianna Clemens, Kyle Collins, Austin Covey, John Doraski, Megan Duderstadt, Scott Everett,  Benjamin Gibson, Noah Heim, Luke Hrubik, Nicole Kohler, Matthew Kuzniakowski, Madeline Lininger, Morgan Lippert, Kaylee Martin, Collin McGurer, Ally Milano, Dicey Miller, Jessica Moore, Shiann Penna, Megan Perrine, Jessica Pitsinger, Matthew Ryser, Katlyn Simpson, Mikaela Siracki, Eric Splinter, Scott Stanley, Johannah Stefanek, Michaela Weisbarth, Marissa White,

Dylan Wojtasik


9th Grade

All A’s – Elisha Bly, Francesca Bowman, Christian Crawford, Marissa Cremers, Joseph Emrick, Lauren Jones, Callie Pfile, Jane Rader, Brenna Tabor, Riley Van Kirk, Mikhala West, Heidi Wickli


3.2 & Above – Marcus Arnett, Thomas Bissler, Taylor Brown, Dane Burrows, Emma Chinn, Halie Collins, Brittany Davis, Jacob Dean, Rose Englert, Nicholas Ensinger, Brittany Gallagher, Travis Gibson, Kelly Hartman, Nina Jurcevic, Jessica Lambert, Courtney Lytle, Alicia Masga, Cassidie Maur, Hannah McBride, Hope Miller, Janis Nystrom, Michaela Paroff, Guy Peart, Angelina Penna, Trevor Putney, Grayson Rose, Colton Ruff, Savanna Sheer, Larra Shreve, Emily Simon, Zachary Sossa, Chandler Stefanek


*Maplewood Student


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3.5+ SENIORS – George Baran, Landis Grant Bates, Tod Bevilacqua*, Lauren Bissell, Charles Blankenship, Mikayla Blankenship, Sarah Bridgman, Samantha Canepa, Olivia Cobb, Damon Daugherty, Kayla Diroll, Morgan Engelhart, Jessica Felker, Michael Fletcher, Amanda Fosnight, Cheyenna Frederick, Angela Goodrich, Nathan Green, Mackenzie Gregoire, Sierra Hobbs, Summer Hurd*, Alyssa Jaehn, Taylor Jenkins, John Kilbourne, Victoria Krause, Samantha Kulish, Elizabeth LaMarca, Allison Little, Jacob Lovick, Randi Lyle, Danielle Magyarics, Taylor Michael, Darian Milam, Kathleen Murray, Alaina Nuti, Rebecca Pochedly, Daryl Riley, Skylar Scala, Ashley Seneff, Melissa Skocdopole, Abigail Soltisz, Emily St Hilaire, Ashley Todd, Iya Tsedenova, Allison Vannoy, Amber Vargo, Nicholas Zeleznik, Logan Zuponcic


3.0 – 3.49 SENIORS – Jacob Agle, Victoria Andexler, Carrigan Benoit, Tyler Brady, Miranda Brothers, Brittany Campbell, Samantha Cannella, Matthew Czerny, Emeric De Sermet, Erin Dunkin, Daniel Evans, Brian Ferguson, Dustin Friend, Tyler Gall, Ashlea Gopp, Meaghan Green, Monica Groves, Hannah Hall, Amber Harrison, Kristen Jones, Amanda Krakowski, Marissa Midgley, Abbey Milkovich, Jenna Morgenstern, Conner Nemec, Jack Onders*, Jonah Onuska, Katey Paxton, Joseph Reyes, Challis Roberts, Tyler Roth, Charles Shahan, Ariel Sherry, Dakota Stanley, Julianna Stewart , Raymond Stewart*, Chase Tayerle, Justin Vaughan, Jacquelyn Wagner, Aaron Yonker, Marisa Zolgus


3.5+ JUNIORS – Ashley Adkins, Ryan Ambler*, Amy Auble, Reba Ball, Kaitlyn Benjamin ,Hannah Bennett, Alexandra Bigler, Savannah Burkett, Lauren Crislip, Craig Davis, Makenna Delgado, Nicole Derthick, Dessie Donat, Scott Durham, Dane Etto, Jeremiah Fitzgerald, Leannah Frances, Adriana French, Amber Gibbons, Melody Griffith, Noah Gula, Austin Harris, Paul Hartman, Miranda Head, Bryanna Herbold, Holly Hoffman, Danielle Kess, Ashley La Manna, Alyssa Lamb, Ashley Lutz*, Paige Markuzic, Keith Medvetz, George Monroe, Cameron Moodie, Nicole Nero, Nathan Nielsen, Ross Nielsen, Rosalie Novotny, Alan Ortega, Daniel O’Sickey, Maia Pancost, Madison Sara, Jared Sayre*, Matthew Schieda*, Mckenzie Shea, Emily Smith*, Madeleine Sorrick, Samantha Spencer *, Morgan Strenk, Camilla Tyrpak, Hayley Zigman


3.0 – 3.49 JUNIORS – Miranda Beatty, Brennan Bosela*, Emma Jane Carson*, Natalie Cline, Carlie Cofojohn, Derek Cook, Benjamin Cooley, Stephen Cox, Chelsea Evans, Brendan Fannin, Miranda Gregoire, Taylor-Paige Happel*, David Hill, Hannah Hilty, Sabrina Houghton, Brandon Johnson, Kira Judd, William Kelley, Rick Kollman, Emily Kotrlik, George Lesnak, Lindsey Marshall*, Kaylee Mays, Megan McDivitt, Johan Milberg, Tyler Reese, Gregory Clay Reid, Christian Rosenfeldt, John Scotton, Andrew Shahan*, Noah Shannon, Autumn Sike, Joseph Slechta, Jordan Smith, Gabriel Surgeon, Evan Svab, Allanah Swan, Mollie Tubre*, Melissa Tuskes, Austin Usher, Laney Velek, Smantha Vojtush*, Jessica Wright


3.5+ SOPHOMORES - Ashley Agle, Alexander Bowser, Kimberly Bretland, Brandon Caldwell, Brittany Caldwell, Emma Canepa, Courtney Capel, Mercedes Condo, Kaylyn Cox, Kristen D’Amico, Morgan Faldowski, Aubrey Ferguson, Keri Fisher, Kaitlyn Goldinger, Kelsey Habeger, Haley Hall, Nicole Hocevar, Isabel Hysing, Clayton Jackson, Hannah Kent, Bailee Kodash, Audrey Kulish, Amanda Lerchbacher, Amanda Marshek, Caitklin McSwain, Sarah McWhorter, Robert Mitchell, Sydney Nemec, Samuel Oliphant, Jacob Ondash, JoAnna Ondash, Nathan Pallotto, Austin Schenck, Romanie Schweickert, Adrianna Scopilliti, Andrew Shehorn, Lauren Smith, Lindsey Soltisz, Alexis Stahl, Joshua Stern, Stephanie Suprenant, Allyssa Swan, Valori Vaught, Isabella Wagner


3.0-3.49 SOPHOMORES – Adam Atkinson, Wesley Baird, Andrew Boyer, Hayley Cales, Alyssa Campbell, Clarence Colbetzor, Kelly Cowan, Nathaniel Daczko, Collin Engelhart, Jordan Engelhart, Anthony Foulkes, Jolson French, Julya Gamble, Michael Hand, Joseph Hartwig, Daniel Jones, Shanley Kline, Julia Krause, Cole Kvasnicka, Allison La Manna, Tyler Labas, Jacob Lieberth, Jarek Manners, Meghan McDermott, Karley Meikle, Shianne Reese, Anthony Savoca, Matthew Scofield, Melissa Soltisz, Alex Strahler, Olivia Suprenant, McKenna Svab, Dylan Sweet, Matthew Thompson, Lindsay Thut


3.5 + FRESHMEN – Melody Bencie, Madisyn Benoit, Karli Bigler, Alyssa Blake, Maria Blasiole, Lauren Bodenschatz, Haley Brady, Olivia Brady, Gabrielle Campana, Aaron Cox, Derek Crislip, Megan Cymanski, Amber Davis, Jacquelynne Deuley, Emma Dockery, Brittany Douglas, Allison Durham, Melina Edic, Taylor Gall, Alexandrea Geraci, Emily Graves, Morgan Grubaugh, Matthew Harris, Jessica Hayes, Evelyn Head, Autumn Henwood, Jacob Krupp, Sydney Kulla, Collin Manners, Mia Miller, Benjamin Pearce, Marissa Perry, Michael Picone, Ashley Prater, Katelyn Riley, Amber Schauer, Michael Snodgrass, Blaine Sorrick, Logan Thut, Madeline Turner, Emma Urban, Emily Walker, Megan Wilfong, Noah Worron, Angel Zeigler


3.0-3.49 FRESHMEN – Morgan Chesla, Lily Cline, Haley Davis, Francis Donat, Brandon Douglas, Adam Fitzgerald, Paige Fitzwater, Dakota Frenz, Kassandra Gregoire, Jessica Hand, Christopher Harbaugh, Russell Hilverding, Lilly Hoffman, Nicholas Jenkins, Jacob Kollman, Emma Kotkowski, Cole Kramer, Robert Leanza, Kristen Onders, Faith Pietrocini, Michael Quesenberry, Colton Rahach, Curtis Stephens, Jakeb Tekavec, Cydney Tyrpak, Alexis Ule, Jessica Weber, Jacob Whitman, Casey Zeigler



*  Denotes Maplewood Career Center Student



8th Grade Honor Roll – Elizabeth Adkins,  Maddison Beatty,  Lillian Bissell*,  Emma  Blake*,  Mary Bowers,  Hannah Boyer*,  Jade Bretz*,  Ryan  Britt*,  Courtney Brothers,  Megan Buchert,  Thomas Carson,  Zoe Catcott,  Lincoln Chiller,  Sophia Cobb,  Joseph  Daczko,  Alexa  Donaldson*,  Marybeth Duke*,  Heavenly Duley,  Kassandra Fedor,  Alexander Forristal*,  Katherine  Fosnight*,  Olivia Fowler,  Frank  Fugman*,  Gage Garner,  Sierra Gregel,  Nicole Gronzalski,  Lauren Grove*,  Kayla Grubbs,  Caleb Gula,  Zachary Haas,  Cailin Harris, Emily  Hawkins*,  Hannah   Hetman-Maiden*,  Madalynn Huntington*,  Gavin Hysing*,  Mariah Kess,  Michael Knipper,  Carlee Krause, Lauren  Lerchbacher,  Taylor  Lough*,  Christina Masiello*,  Nathan McBride,  Mae-Lynn McGee,  Mitchell McGreal*,  John Merritt*,  Cole Miller,  Sara  Miller*,  Brent Monroe,  Heather Montgomery,  Shannia Moore,  Christopher Novotny,  Ephraim  Oliphant*,  Lauren Pallotto,  Britney Lynn Pawlak,  Aaron Saffels,  Austin  Shaffer*, Valerie Shelton,  Peyton Smith*,  Dominic Szuhay, Avrie Talboo,  Mackenzie Tayerle,  Ashley Toothman,  Jacquelyn Travis,  Leah  Van Horn*,  Stefanie Walker,  Ashley Wieclaw, Taylor Yoder,  Kyle Zigman


8th Grade Merit Roll – Celestial Abee, James Tyler Ash, Dylan Belloir, Sean Brooks,  Gavin Busta,  Mikayla Campbell, Taylor Cochrane,  Alison Darrow,  Alyssa Daugherty, Matthew Davis,  Aaron Day,  Tristan Ducca, Evelyn Geib,  Ariel Gibson,  Gabriella Gullatta,  Zackary Guyette,  David Hand,  Domonique Harrigan,  Brenden Hershberger, Bryce Honeycutt, Chance Hosey,  Lynzie Jeffrey,  Brantson Jessel, Justin Jones,  Brock Kaeferle,  Breanna Kimball,  Stephen Knill,  Treyvor Kress,  Eric Lawless,  Ashley  Marotta,  Madison Monreal,  Daniel Oswald,  Kyle Plechaty,  Baylee Reid,  Kylee Reid,  Paige  Rezabek,  Meghan Sara,  Victoria Seaborn, Trever Shears,  Andrew Sorboro, Bailee Stoots, Joshua Wheeler,  Caitlin Zeigler


7th Grade Honor Roll – Logan Ailey, Madelyn Aker, Benjamin Arnette,  Samantha  Bencie*, Alyssa Blasiole*, Angel Bowles, Alexis Cannella,  Ellen Cox,  Allison Downs, Steve Duber,  Zachary  Eastridge*,  Ashleigh Fowler, Kasey Fyffe, Stephen Glova, Jason Green, Meghan Griffin*, Collin Gross, Sandra Hahn, Kathleen Hawley,  Ashley Hayes, Elizabeth  Hilverding*,  Joshua Howell*,  Ashley Kline *, Reilly Kline,  Zachary Kotkowski, Alexander Kramer, Nicholas Krause,  Parker Kruis,  Devon Larlham,  Nicole Latine,  Noah Lind*,  Landon Little, Alexander Maiden,  Bianca  Marinelli*,  Quinn  Mattern*,  Noah  Maxwell*,  Willow McDougald*,Corrie McHone, Haley Pero-Favazzo*, Joseph Peters*, Domenic Picone *,  Anthony  Pietrocini*, Kayley Plechaty*, Kellie Ristau*, Katelyn Rojek, Aidan Ruehr, Alexis Sawastuk, Jacob Scotton, Maggie Semety*, Jared Simon, Jarrod Slechta, Riley Smith, Mira Soukenik,  Megan Spurlock, Abigail Strahan, Breanna Teece*, Jaxxon Tekavec,  Lily Turner*, Dalton Tyrrell, Nicholas Vilt, Kaeli Wilson, Amelia Wyson, Joseph Zito


7th Grade Merit Roll – Logan Beaver, Olin Benjamin, Sierra Bernotas, Ronald Campbell, Austin Canan, Serena Clark, Emma Conaway, Tifanie Czarzasty, Matthew Duley, Jeffrey Dunfee, Taylor Frenz, Camille Gibler, Rachel Kocisko, Luke Leister, Kimberly McDivitt,  Jason Midgley, Jacob Ober,  Samantha Parrino,  Kate-Lynn Pawlak, Alisa Prater, Chad Ramsell, Tyler Rodhe,  Dominic Savoca, Scott Schaefer, Adelaide Schweickert, Alexis Scott, Matthew Semety, Samantha Smith, Mackenzie Stubbs, Alexis Tosi, William  Vaughan, Samantha Vespucci, Michael Anthony Zabala


6th Grade Honor Roll - Erin Adkins, Gabrielle Albrecht *, Mason Angle, Alexis Annal-Howell, Clay Bascombe, Steven Bene, Riley Blankenship, Rory Bowers, Slate Bretz *, Samantha Capel*, Elizabeth Carson,  Olivia Edge , Cole Fannin, Zachary Forristal*,  Torrie Gall, Maren Gauntner*, Cahlin Goodhart, Isabel Hawkins,  Noah Hickin *, Kelly Hoffman, Merlin Johnson,  Emma Kuivila, Austin Lougen,  Maxwell Maretka,  Angela Masiello*,  Trevor Matheny,  Austin Miller,  Jocelynn Norsen,  Emily Nuti, Leah O’Laughlin,  Taylor Olson-Lewis,  Joshua Ondash, Madison Pasko,  Isaiah Patton *, Ian Perkins *, Dylan Pope, Sandra Rand, Sydney Reed, Madelyn Rennecker,  Kaylee Reynolds,  Autumn Richards,  James Riley,  Connor Rowe,  Collin Sanderson, Sydney Scarl,  Rachel Scotton *, Alexis Shultz*,  Madeline Simmons*, Isabella Sorboro *,  Gabrielle Spoto,  Braydon Svab, Nolan Teece, Connor Thgipen,  Chloe Wagner, Luke Wagner


6th Grade Merit Roll – Adam Abernathy, Blaze Angle, Nicholas Backer, Riley Ballentine, Dylan Barton, Ryan Bigler, Olivia Boyle, Alicia Brodzinsk, Anastasia Brugmann, Cole Brugmann, Michael Campana,  Madilyn Cline, Kayton Craft, Austin deLaGrange, Abigail Dombrowsk, Wyatt Garner, Taylor Grubb, Kaden Grubbs, Nicholas Gullett, Alexander Gutowski, Cameron Langford, Jessica Latine, Rachael Lutz, Dallas McNamara, Jessica Menteer,  Melanie Miller, Patricia Moore, Cassandra Painley, Isabella Romano, Emily Sara, Alesha Sawastuk, Maranda Seither, Dylan Shaffer, Saybri Shaffer, Christopher Sharrock, Jason Shenkel, Kayla Starcher, Sean Sweet, Brittany Toothman, Mason Turpel, Onna Vacca, Casidee West, James Wheeler, Adam Worron

*indicates Straight A’s


Garrettsville – There will be a benefit concert in conjunction with an art and craft silent auction on Saturday, May 17 from 6:30 to 9:00 at the Garrettsville United Methodist Church.  The goal of the People Tree’s fire fund is to aid those merchants and employees  affected by the March 22 downtown fire in Garrettsville.

Featured for the evening will be local Christian singer and songwriter GAIL MANGERI, who will be performing from 6:30 to 7:30 , with an auction break for rest and refreshment, then a closing round of music and inspiration to conclude the event.  Gail will be joined by other talented family members in inviting the community to sing along and raise prayers of thanks that no one was seriously injured in the fire. Prayers for healing and restoration for the community and the historic downtown will also be offered.

Admission is by donation.

Donations may be directed to Maureen at 330-527-4674…questions as well.

It’s about rebuilding people too.


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

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

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


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

#Garrettsville Strong Pilsner at Main Street Grille

#GarrettsvilleStrong is now on tap. Main Street Grille & Brewing Co. is donating all proceeds to the GarrettsvilleStrong fund to help rebuild businesses. Next to it is the new Main Street Joe; made with a hint of vanilla and Papua New Guinea, Kapal beans which we had fresh roasted at Bent Tree coffee roasters in Kent OH.

#GarrettsvilleStrong is now on tap. Main Street Grille & Brewing Co. is donating all proceeds to the GarrettsvilleStrong fund to help rebuild businesses. Next to it is the new Main Street Joe; made with a hint of vanilla and Papua New Guinea, Kapal beans which was fresh roasted at Bent Tree coffee roasters in Kent OH.

On Sale Now -  Every now and then life throws you the opportunity to do something great. At Main Street that moment came in the form of a tragic fire across the street on March 22nd. But we knew what had to be done. We brewed a style almost as old as the town itself…This German Pilsner is clean and crisp with a beautiful floral hop character to it and a dry finish. By purchasing this beer you now have the power to help rebuild Garrettsville at your very fingertips because 100% of the proceeds from every glass sold are being donated to the Rebuild Garrettsville fund. Never knew power could taste so good did you? Well then, drink up! We were strong before, but now we’re #GarrettsvilleStrong.  ABV 5%, IBU’s 33.

For a complete listing of fundraisers visit www.garrettsvillearea.com/help

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All Aboard!  It’s not too late to sign up for the Geauga and Portage Soil and Water Conservation Districts’ unique teacher workshops for teachers and educators.  Through outdoor learning and inquiry experiences, we can help your transition to tackle the standards!  These workshops are open to educators of all grades and disciplines, proven as effective and engaging trainings, and offer affordable graduate credits through Ashland University.

The Wonders of Watersheds (WOW) Workshop: Outdoor Explorations for Classroom Applications, Tuesday, June 17- Thursday, June 19, is a 3-day program that offers one to three graduate credits.  Based in Geauga and Portage Counties, educators will discover creative ways to incorporate the standards through activities, inquiry, outdoor investigations, and peer teaching.  Participants will receive Project Learning Tree, Project WILD, Project WILD Aquatic, Science & Civics, and Project WET curriculum guides.

The Advanced Wonders of Watersheds, Monday, June 23 – Wednesday, June 25, is an intensive 3-day program at Old Woman Creek National Estuary in Huron, Ohio.  This once-in-a-lifetime experience includes activities, tours, and the unique opportunity to collect research data on Lake Erie with the United States Geological Survey Lake Erie Biological Station.  Participants can earn one to three graduate credits and will also receive Teachers On The Estuary (T.O.T.E.), Flying Wild, The Wonders of Wetlands, and Healthy Water Healthy People curriculum guides.

Both workshops provide an exciting, in-depth look at the natural wonders of our region, along with invaluable training, curriculum guides, and graduate credits through Ashland University.  Registration deadline is May 15th.  For more information, please visit our website at www.geaugaswcd.com or contact Gail Prunty at 440-834-1122 ext. 2 or gprunty@geaugaswcd.com.

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At the start of this month’s School Board meeting, High School Principal Arden Sommers spoke about the value of Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) within the District. District-wide, PLCs are formal times when teachers collaborate to develop shared missions, discuss student outcomes, create action plans, and develop continuous improvements within the various schools within the District. At the Primary and Intermediate Schools, the 25 minutes of student recess time can be used without impacting instruction time. At the High School, this isn’t an option. To provide CHS teachers with this necessary time, Crestwood will implement a delayed start to the school day on alternating Wednesdays starting next fall.

Instead of starting the day at 7:40 am, on alternating Wednesdays, CHS classes will start at 8:30 am. Freshmen, as well as students in grades 10 thru 12 who are missing assignments, or students using District busing will arrive at the usual time. Freshman will have access to orientation, tutoring, or time to make-up work, with assistance provided by Leadership Workshop students.

In addition, the Board approved the adoption of a calamity day make-up plan. The plan utilizes Blizzard Bags, an option presented by the Ohio Department of Education, to help offset school days missed during the winter.  Blizzard Bags are available online or as take-home lessons that students complete to make up a missed day of school. The first assignment was due Friday, April 25.   The second assignment was assigned on April 28 and will be due on Friday, May 9.  The third assignments will be assigned on Monday, May 12 and will be due on Friday, May 23. Blizzard Bags will make three instructional days, allowing Crestwood to make up only one day at the end of this school year. Please note that failure to turn in a Blizzard Bag will result in a day of absence.

Lastly, congratulations are in order for third grade teacher Rosemary Krupar and fourth grade teacher Kristen Patton. Krupar was nominated for the Presidential Academic Excellence in Science, Math and Technology (PAESMT) Award, and was also selected as Conservation Educator of the Year by League of Ohio Sportsman. Patton is a Greater Cleveland Council of Teachers of Mathematics Outstanding Mathematics Professional award winner for 2013-2014.  Excellent work, ladies!

The Board has scheduled a special meeting on Monday, May 19th at 6 pm in the High School library. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss certified and administrative contracts.

The next regularly scheduled School Board meeting will be held on Monday, May 5th at 7 pm in the High School Library. Prior to the meeting, at 6:30 pm, retiring teachers and staff will be honored for their years of service to Crestwood Schools. Those individuals are Mary Lou Bernotas (Secretary, 29 years), Pamela Braden (Speech Pathologist, 35 years), Theresa Duesing (MS Teacher, 35 years), Patricia Eskridge (MS Teacher, 23 years),  Rick Hall (Custodian, 30 years), Edward Nichols (MS Teacher, 30 years),  Eileen Shahan (CIS Teacher, 18 years),  Janet Wilkins (CIS Teacher, 21 years), and Gerrie Zimcosky (CIS Teacher, 34 years). The public is encouraged to attend.


*Please note: The April meeting was recorded and posted online. To view the video, visit the District website at crestwoodschools.org.


ken-fox-music-teacher-retirement-garrettsville-garfield-elementary“Twelve years, 36 concerts and over 20,000 attendees” is how James A. Garfield Superintendent Ted Lysiak introduced elementary school music teacher Mr. Ken Fox for his farewell concert last week.  Fox, who will be retiring from teaching at the end of this school year, said he will miss his students and is very appreciative of the opportunity he has had to work with them.

Last Tuesday the first grade students performed the night’s concert, titled Green.  The students, decked out in green leaf leis, danced, clapped, jumped and sang along with their teacher in a lively tribute to Earth Day offering readings and musical selections including “It’s Easy Bein’ Green”, “Nature Baby”, My Earth, and “What Do You Do With A Water Waster”.

Mr. Fox plans to keep busy after his retirement and is considering all his options.  When asked what he felt his greatest accomplishment in the past twelve years of teaching was he said it is when former students make a point of “looking him up and saying hello”.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


horseMantua - Frustrated? Anxious? Overwhelmed? Resentful? Restless? Confused?

If so, it’s time for a change — a retreat from the everyday, surrounded by nature, so you can clarify the root of what’s nagging you, then identify the goals and objectives to help you chart a new course that will bring you lasting satisfaction. It’s time to bring in the horses.

Yes, horses.

L-E-A-D is an unconventional approach to leadership, team building, coaching and personal growth developed by human resources management professional Sue E. Thomas of Mantua. She utilizes horses in a unique experiential approach to awaken one’s potential in personal and professional development.

Thomas founded Leadership Equine Assisted Development, LLC in 1999. She has extensive experience in business, human resource management, and with horses. Certified in a number of counseling disciplines, Thomas is is a Professional Certified Coach through the International Coach Federation and holds a master’s degree in Organizational Development and Analysis.

Thomas combines her backgrounds in executive and life coaching, organizational development, and personal/leadership development, to connect people to their life purpose, vision and values. “Working with the horses provides awareness of what holds you back, to be successful and obtain the life you desire,” she said.

At a recent What About Me? Workshop at her 40-acre farm, Thomas led a group of women through a two-day exploration in personal development, defining personal struggles, boundaries, dreams, frustrations, goals and objectives. Horses Flash, Jazz, Boss and Whiskey provided helpful feedback every step of the way. (The resident cats and golden retrievers provided comic relief.)

“This workshop provides space and a comfortable environment to look at the ‘who’ you are today by gently peeking at the past, living in the present, and looking at your future desires,” Thomas explained. “We guide you in self-exploration, and provide room for you to release what no longer serves you, strengthen what does, and gain awareness needed to direct your desired future.”

By placing each woman in a vulnerable situation with a horse — and a specific objective to accomplish inside the arena with that horse — participants quickly learned to use clear, concise, consistent modes of communication to prompt the horse through a particular exercise or obstacle course.

For example, in one exercise, each participant was instructed to take a raw egg and draw symbols or write words that identified their most valued elements of life (faith, family, health, a career, etc.) on the shell. Then, each person had to balance their egg on a spoon while leading a horse (which represented “the stuff in life you’ve got to get done”) through an obstacle course — without dropping their egg. Unfortunately, the horse was skittish about walking over the white poles along the course, and tended to shy away, pushing or pulling the participant off balance. It was a good metaphor for the common struggle to achieve balance in this life while pursuing dreams, despite stresses at work and demands from loved ones, or whatever the situation may be.

Results were mixed, depending on the approach each participant took. Two made slow, halting progress with close calls along the way, but crossed the finish line with victorious smiles. Another paid too much attention to the horse, lost track of her egg, and was horrified when she lost control of all she held dear, just to see it drop into the mud. Yet another participant marched her horse through its paces in record time, holding her egg in steady balance from start to finish (the sign of a chronic multi-tasker).

Other exercises involved leading horses while blindfolded; depending upon a partner’s verbal instructions to accomplish the task. Some activities focused on personal initiatives; others on group dynamics, trust and cooperation skills. Depending on each person’s body language, personal boundaries and subconscious cues, the horse would respond agreeably, or with stubbornness, playfulness or aloofness. Working with the horses heightened each participant’s awareness of their environment, their fears and vulnerabilities, their potential for growth, and their opportunity to change limiting behaviors that provided measurable results.

The most cited result of the workshop was clarity: the ability to clear the cobwebs and concretely identify the root of frustrations, learn how to put it into words, then devise a concrete plan to resolve the issue.

Through it all, Thomas’ mission was to inspire and nurture growth in individuals so they might reach their potential with integrity, respect, trust and honesty. In addition to personal growth workshops like this for women and at-risk youth, Thomas also provides leadership training, consulting and coaching services to corporations, organizations and other professional groups to encourage leadership development, team building and employee development using horses.

To explore L-E-A-D further for your personal or professional development, contact Sue Thomas at (330) 274-2693 or visit LeadershipEAD.com.


Hiram - The last meeting of the Village Council began with a work session held in conjunction with the Hiram Township Trustees. The purpose of this meeting was to iron out issues relating to taxes due to the Village by Township employees and a proposed resolution put forth by the Trustees to detach a parcel of land to the Township.

When asked her thoughts on the outcome of this first joint meeting, Hiram Township Trustee Chairman Kathy Schulda remarked, “It was a very good start. The next step will be for us to gather information to back up the hours Township employees are in the Village. Then we also need to figure out the percentage (or time) we feel would be a far amount.” Schulda continued, “The detachment is not so clear cut. We can ask but I’m under the understanding they don’t have to grant it. The township was there long before the Village and when we were separated into two entities I’m sure the predecessors had no idea all these problems would arise.”

During the meeting, Council President Tom Wadkins suggested that instead of using a formula to calculate taxes owed by Township employees, that the Township keep a log of actual hours worked by each employee, so taxes would be based on actual hours worked within the Village. It was the general consensus that the Village and Township would work to resolve issues with the current tax year before addressing the two years of past due taxes. The detachment resolution was tabled by Council, pending further direction from the Trustees.

Next, Hiram Village Park Board Chair Susan Merrill and Park Board member Chris Szell reported a summary of residents’ input the Park Board gathered at two public community meetings. Basically, the community expressed a desire that the park space have multiple uses. The feedback they received indicated that residents do not want the property to remain idle, but that exclusive use of the property by any entitle was not recommended. Later, Hiram College Athletic Director Ellen Dempsey presented Council with a memorandum of understanding from Hiram College to build an NCAA baseball field at the site. It was noted that a park could be included on the same property. After much discussion, the motion to accept the memorandum of understanding was not approved by Council.

Next, Assistant Fire Chief Mark Kozak reported that the Hiram Fire Department responded to 27 calls in March, and was the first Department to provide mutual aid at the Main Street fire in Garrettsville. Police Chief Ed Samec reported that his Department filed 287 offense reports, up from 213 in the previous month. In addition, he reported that his Department held a Distracted Driving event at Hiram College, where participants used a driving simulator to experience scenarios, learning the penalties, costs and adverse results that can occur. Chief Samec also noted that the Department received a $500 ODNR grant for the annual Cops and Kids Fishing Day, which will take place on August 23 at Camp Asbury. He also received a $300 donation from Metro Security in Brimfield for the Shop With a Cop program. Lastly, he welcomed Reserve Officer Rob Kern to his Department.

In his report, Mayor Lou Bertrand recommended that Council ask Solicitor Tom Reitz to draft a resolution to allow the Village to advertise for bids for the old Fire Hall building. Council concurred; the resolution will be presented at the next Regular Council meeting. Fiscal Officer Susan Skrovan reported that the Village will undergo an Audit on April 16. She also reported that she’s been working on the transfer of tax data to the Regional Income Tax Authority (RITA), and asked Council to pass a motion to allow her to go through all the steps necessary to move forward with RITA, including the termination of a contract with the previous tax assessing company used by the Village. In addition, Council scheduled a Records Retention Committee meeting, followed by a Budget Committee meeting starting at 6 pm on June 10th.

The next meeting of the Hiram Village Council will be on May 13th at 7 pm in the Municipal Building.


pcdl-libraryWindham – Windham Village council met April 24, 2014 for their regular monthly meeting not held on the regular meeting night.

Council approved amendments to the agenda, the minutes, the financial report, and the police and fire report. Two guests had prior authorization to speak at the meeting. The first guest was Cecilia Swanson from the Portage County District Library PCDL. Swanson announced that April 23, 2014 was World Book Night and passed out a copy of Agatha Christy’s After the Funeral. Swanson also inquired about the way the village helps fund the library and requested that they consider going to a percentage rather than a flat rate. After some discussion it was determined they could probably do that but will have to add some language to the contract that would keep the costs from skyrocketing. Cecilia also had one library sign and will purchase another one if the village will install them.

The second guest was Angelo Battaglia Democratic candidate for county commissioner. Battaglia stated that he is a business owner and wants to serve others. His goals are to learn how townships, villages, sheriff’s departments, etc operate and see what the commissioners can do to help them. He claims he doesn’t have all the answers but is willing to dig in to find solutions.

Council then passed Ordinance O-2014-13 amending the current pay ordinance to establish and revise the salaries and wages of all full-time and part-time employees within the Village of Windham. This ordinance repeals all prior inconsistent ordinances and declares  an emergency. The changes are the base salary for the fiscal officer is set at $42,658.56 effective May 1, 2014. They also established and approved $600 a month salary for the zoning inspector.

In other council news, council approved the donation of eight yards of mulch from Doll Lumber, announced support for the Ohio Public Works Commission, and appointed Randy Slusher to the Planning and Zoning Committee. Councilwoman Rachel Barrett asked if the village administrator would get the paperwork filed so Windham could benefit from the community service workers this summer. The mayor said they would look in to it.

The next Windham Council meeting is scheduled May 29, 2014 at 7 pm in council chambers.

Hiram - The Baroque ensemble Les Délices are featured artists for the Eighth Annual John M. Watson Memorial Concert on Friday, May 2, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. at Hiram Christian Church.  These programs are presented each spring by the Hiram College Music Department and funded by a generous endowment in memory of gifted musician John M. Watson by his family.

Les Délices brings together artists with national reputations who share passion for masterworks from the French Baroque.  Their performances on period instruments allow them to explore a rich tapestry of tone colors.  The Hiram program The Leading Man features the unique voice and dynamic stage presence of Grammy-nominated tenor Jason McStoots, who performs feats of musical heroism, absurdist comedy, and ravishing beauty in operatic excerpts by Lully, Boismortier, Leclair, and Rameau.  The ensemble includes director and oboist Debra Nagy, baroque violinists Scott Metcalfe & Cynthia Black, viola da gamba player Josh Lee, and harpsichordist Michael Sponseller. Their website is www.lesdelices.org.

The event is free and open to all.  A reception will follow the concert.  Hiram Christian Church is located at the intersection of Rts. 82 & 700 by the Hiram College campus.  Contact Tina Dreisbach (dreisbachts@hiram.edu) with any questions.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


hiram-school-prarie-park-ohio-project-natureHiram – At the last Regular Council meeting, Hiram Village Council heard a presentation by the Hiram Village Park Board, which was established in March of last year. The Board’s first task was to focus on how the Hiram School property – 5.2 acres within the Village that was acquired in June of 2013, should be used.

Although the Park Board is a new institution, the process to transform the property in question began six years prior, when both the Village and the College worked together to have the vacant school, which had been owned by an out-of-town landlord, relinquished to the Village and demolished due to concerns regarding safety. According to Hiram Mayor Lou Bertrand, the purchase price of the school property was $160,000, although the appraisal value was $300,000. The Village and College worked together to procure two grants for a total of $86,000 toward the purchase price. In addition, the cost to conduct an environmental study (at an estimated cost of $17,000) and to demolish the school (at an estimated value of roughly $80,000) was also paid for by grants. The Village now solely owns the property.

At that evening’s meeting, Park Board Chair Susan Merrill and member Chris Szell reported a summary of residents’ input the Board gathered at two public community meetings. In general, the community expressed a desire that the park space have multiple uses. The feedback they received indicated that residents do not want the property to remain idle, but that exclusive use of the property by any entity was not recommended. The proposed uses of the space included a playground, picnic tables, softball field, gazebo, fitness trail and prairie alternative. It was proposed that the Park Board should be responsible for oversight and maintenance of the property. The Park Board proposed that any work to develop the park should be completed in phases, according to a five-year plan currently under development by the Park Board. The cost to complete the first phase, which includes solving drainage issues, asphalt disposal, and maintenance to the existing baseball field are estimated to cost roughly $5,000. Potential funding sources could include Beautification Funds and grants.

Next, Hiram College Athletic Director Ellen Dempsey presented Council with a memorandum of understanding from Hiram College to build an NCAA baseball field at the site. All work on the proposed field would be done in partnership with Hiram College and the Cleveland Indians Development Group. In addition to an NCAA appropriate field, the property could also include a playground or other features. The proposed document presented to Council for consideration stipulated that the College would maintain the property, and retain exclusive use during the baseball season, estimated to run from March 1st through May 15th. The proposed agreement served as a lease agreement between the Village and College, in effect, paying off the $75,000 balance due by the Village. Under this agreement, scheduling use of the park outside of baseball season would be handled through the Athletic Director’s office. Dempsey deferred to Doug McGee, who served as the College’s consultant on the project, to answer any questions on the initial stages of the project, as they occurred previous to her involvement in the project.

After much discussion, the motion to accept the memorandum of understanding was not approved by Council. Later, Chris Szell of the Park Board, remarked, “We appreciated Council’s time and interest in our thoughtful approach to address the multiple residents would like to see for the use of the land. We will continue to press on with the development of a long-term plan for the land, and to explore other funding opportunities.”

McGee responded later as well, stating, “The College accepts what the Village has decided, and will move forward with plans to develop an enhanced baseball facility on another College-owned property.” He added, “When the College and the Village have worked together in the past, the two can accomplish wonderful things, like the extension of the eastern section of Hinsdale Street, which benefitted both. It’s unfortunate that this time, it didn’t work out, but we will move forward. ”


Photo: Iron Eagle Martial Arts

Photo: Iron Eagle Martial Arts

Mantua – Iron Eagle Martial Arts in Mantua Village is now offering Kung Fu classes in addition to their Taekwondo and Reality Self Defense Programs. Come join us for an Open House on Saturday, May 10 from 12-2 pm and meet Sifu Wayne Christopher, instructor, with over 40 years of training and experience in Hung Loy Kung Fu.  Those dedicated to the art of Hung Loy kept it shrouded in mystery for hundreds of years, but with few instructors remaining, Sifu Christopher is determined to bring this art out of the dark and into the light for all to enjoy, and we are proud to support this effort! Learn the philosophy and history behind this fascinating martial art.  Demonstrations will be held throughout the event and refreshments will be served. Come with your questions!  This is a FREE event!

Iron Eagle Martial Arts is located at 10676 Main St. (Route 44), Mantua Village, on the corner of Main St. and Prospect St.

Garrettsville – Last December the James A. Garfield Local School District was awarded a $5 Million State of Ohio Straight A Fund Grant. The funds from this grant have been used to create a “Campus of Excellence” our community can be proud of for generations to come enhancing education for local school children, and expanding opportunities within our community.

As you may have noticed during your travels along State Route 88, construction of the 17,000 square foot addition to the elementary school is under way. This addition will facilitate the consolidation of the James A. Garfield Schools, allowing all 1,500 students to be located on one campus – resulting in over $300,000 in annual operational savings, and increasing the ability to share resources.  A professional development center has also been included in the addition, and will be used as a multi-purpose space for training, and public use.

The grant was not limited solely to physical construction projects, as upgrades to the District’s technology infrastructure are also being made. Students in grades 7-12 will be issued laptop computers, and students in grades K-6 will have increased access to laptop carts.

In an effort to bring even more great resources to Garrettsville and our surrounding communities, partnerships were established to make use of the Park Avenue Building. The Greater Cleveland YMCA will bring before and after school care, as well as management of youth sports. The Portage County Educational Service Center will also make use of classroom space at the building to offer a new public preschool option.

A groundbreaking ceremony at the site of the Elementary School’s new fifth and sixth grade wing is scheduled for May 8th at 6:00 PM. Area residents; parents/guardians and students are invited to attend. The rendering above illustrates what the completed project will look like when students arrive on campus at the start of the 2014/2015 school year.



Artist’s Renderings

Artist’s rendering of the elementary school  addition as seen from the main entrance (left) and from the driveway (right).


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

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

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

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


garfield-hall-of-fameGarrettsville - A select but cheerful crowd was in attendance at the James A. Garfield Schools Hall of Fame celebration on Saturday, April 26, 2014.  The Middle School Jazz Band and the High School Jazz Band provided preprandial (Look it up; it means “before a meal”) musical selections for everyone’s listening pleasure and a number of high school athletes were on hand to assist with serving and clean-up.  Joe Malmisur ably handled the duties of master of ceremonies.  Sheri Johnson and Annette Carlisle were the organizers of the event.

The all-star line-up included :

Faber (Rusty) Kearney  -  Introduced  by his old friend and classmate (’76) Joe Malmisur, this Garfield grad has made it a point to be all about serving.  After finishing high school— football letter-winner, National Honor Society, Academic Challenge team, the usual—Rusty went   on to serve in the U.S. Navy, gain a degree in nuclear technology, advance in recognition and respect in the nuclear industry(Currently with Excelon Corp.) and volunteer in community organizations(e.g. Big Brothers and Sisters) wherever he and his family have resided.  Applause rose spontaneously when he shared the fact that his kids are currently on active duty in the U.S. military. The appropriate quote might be, “We make a living by what we get but we make a life by what we give.”(Winston Churchill)

Harry Kraft – Honored for his service to the district, Harry recounted some of his best moments in coaching, predominantly in track and field.  He credited much of his success to the fact that he was privileged to be on the scene when a strong and dedicated cohort of young people was present in the system.  His introducer, Matt Pfleger, was one of these; he and his brother, current athletic director, Jim Pfleger, testified to Coach Kraft’s service as a mentor and role model.  Records set and good times were part of the reminiscences, heads nodded  .  The coach acknowledged the part played by a wife who allowed a prolonged engagement with adolescence and adolescents.  As an 80th birthday gift, this was a winner.

Nick Rogers – Having traveled up from Texas, where he is a well-regarded and successful director of recruiting at Medestar in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, proficient in staffing and recruiting skills, Nick   was introduced by his friend and nominator , Jamie Ward, sports writer with the Geauga County Maple Leaf.  This brought forth a whole litany of Nick’s accomplishments  on courts and fields, and the revelation that he had won an additional letter in baseball, playing on the fly, as it were, when the boys on the diamond fell below required numbers.  Nick was an outstanding performer from an early age and a leader always , an example for athletes across the spectrum–boys, girls, older players,  younger teammates.  He was the straw that stirred the brew.  Nick graciously acknowledged the influences on his life, beginning with his parents, who were always supportive, through Coach Bennett and Coach Morgan and other families which were part of his life.

Jeremy Vecchio, the fourth honoree, was unable to attend.

Socializing and tours of the updated, refurbished, renewed and remodeled  high school were also a popular part of the evening.


Garrettsville – In honor of National Dance Week, the 8th Count Dance Center participated in the nation-wide dance flash mob and “mobbed” their city. This past Sunday afternoon, the 8th Count Dance Center Dancers and their families learned the routine that all the studios were using for Dance Week. Miss Emily took time to learn the dance and then she taught it to the rest of the group. Following the practice, fifteen folks mobbed Garrettsville by performing the dance routine at Speedway, Save-a-Lot, McDonald’s and the parking lot in front of the movie theatre. The purpose of the event is to celebrate dance and to promote fun and fitness.

The dancers wore fluorescent colored t-shirts with the flash mob logo on it to promote the event. The group hit the streets and stores, surprising folks with their dance.  People stopped in awe and watched as the group performed. It was a day of fun and a great way to celebrate dance.

This is not the first time the dance center has participated in this event. Last year, they did this as well. This is the third year the National Dance Foundation has promoted the flash mob event during dance week.

This year, the 8th Count Dance Center has had a very busy dance season. This past weekend they had several of their competition groups qualify for Nationals which will be held later this summer. Their competition team has continued to be a strong contender at events all year long and hopes their success continues at Nationals.

Speaking of the competition team, they will have open calls for next year’s competition team on June 14, 2014 from 9 am until 11am at the center. Anyone who likes to dance but not interested in competition should check out the summer dance schedule and give it a try before committing to a full season of dance. They also will have a variety of dance camps throughout the summer one might like to try.

For more information on classes or summer camps, one can call the center at 330 527-0358 or visit their website for more specifics at www.the8thcount.com. The dance center is located in the Garfield Plaza at 8015 B State Street Garrettsville, OH.

Nelson Bisard, owner of Waterfall Antiques & Collectibles in Garrettsville

Nelson Bisard owner of Waterfall Antiques & Collectibles in Garrettsville. Photo by: Krista Peterson, Staff Photographer

Garrettsville - For over twenty years, husband & wife team Nelson and Judy Bisard have owned and operated one of the area’s premier destinations for antiquities and collectible items. Their multi-dealer shop, Waterfall Antiques & Collectibles, carries a general line of antiques and collectibles, including furniture, accessories, glassware, pottery, jewelry, kitchen items, Victorian smalls, cranberry glass, coins, toys, dolls and so much more.

Located along the Garrettsville boardwalk, Waterfall Antiques and Collectibles is a perfect fit for a community where President James A. Garfield once walked the streets and held meetings in the rooms nearby.

Shoppers are always pleasantly surprised to discover there is so much more to see beyond the main showroom when first entering the 1870’s building. Hidden beyond the first room, treasure seekers find additional nooks and crannies packed with fine furniture, Lee Middleton dolls and smalls. As an added bonus, shoppers who venture to the lower level of the store can explore an exceptionally large basement with exposed rafters and original stone foundation. The basement holds many other pieces of antique furniture and memorabilia. Visitors to the shop also enjoy viewing Eagle Creek and Garrettsville’s scenic waterfall from the deck off the main shop floor.

Located at 8130 Main Street in Garrettsville, Waterfall Antiques and Collectibles is open from 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM Tuesday through Saturday. This weekend take a drive to beautiful Garrettsville, and discover why our historic village is truly a good place to visit and a great place to live.


A temporary sign marks the newest location for Maggie’s Donuts -- Hiram Village -- in the space formerly occupied by Harrison’s Hideaway.

A temporary sign marks the newest location for Maggie’s Donuts — Hiram Village — in the space formerly occupied by Harrison’s Hideaway.

Hiram – Local donut-lovers are thrilled at the news that the Middlefield-based donut bakery will open a new location in Hiram Village — at the location that formerly housed Harrison’s Hideaway on Wakefield Road.

But what prompted owners Bill and Staci Poole, who have been at the helm of the 55-year-old donut dynasty for 26 years, to choose a location in Hiram? “People have been asking via social media,” remarked Bill Poole. And the good news traveled fast, as Facebook friend Kathryn recently posted, “Hooray…welcome Maggie’s Donuts…looking forward to your arrival!” Ali joked about the locations planned drive-thru window, posting, “Can’t wait to welcome you to Hiram! Great idea on the drive thru, with five kids, we would never make it inside!”

If you choose to step inside, you’ll find donuts and other special treats, made according to the same recipes locals have enjoyed for over 50 years. Donuts are prepared at the Middlefield and Bedford locations early each morning, and delivered fresh, seven days a week. Soon local residents can sit down to enjoy hot coffee and fresh donuts, or take some “to go”, via the drive-thru window, delighting family, friends or coworkers with Maggie’s tasty treats.

Poole went on to explain that he has known Hiram Police Chief Ed Samec from his work in Middlefield, where Samec was Police Chief and Poole served as Mayor for 12 years. Poole continued, “Hiram’s Chief, Ed Samec, knew we were scouting locations. Ed called and recommended that we check out the building in the Village.”

Samec beamed, “I always looked at Bill as a pillar of the community. When he told me in a casual conversation that he was looking to spread out I immediately thought that it would be great for him to be in Hiram. Maggie’s is great for Hiram and Hiram is great for Maggie’s.”

Maggie’s currently has four locations — two in Middlefield, one in Bedford, and one in Madison. The Hiram location will open just as soon as renovations can be completed — Poole estimates opening some time between the middle and end of May, with a grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony to occur some time thereafter. Facebook friend Joan marveled, “Congrats to you guys! So glad you have another store to share your absolute BEST donuts ever!” To find out the latest developments, visit Maggie’s Donuts on Facebook.


Garrettsville – Gym Teacher Mark Rado and his students expressed their appreciation to the James A. Garfield PTO, which recently donated a rock-climbing wall to the Elementary School for use during gym classes. Spanning the width the gymnasium, this multicolored climbing wall will provide Garfield students fun new opportunities to be physically active while having a great time.

Garrettsville - It’s getting close to the end of the bowling season and the bowlers just keep getting better!  Collin McGurer shot his first-ever 700 series last Saturday in the Scholastic League.  Collin rolled games of 264, 247 and 205 for an excellent 716 series.   Ryan Ambler’s 266 game gave him a nice 637 series and Jaret Doraski was over 200 all three games with 222, 211 and 203, for a 636 series.  Other good scores:  Bradley Woodrum 235-597, Jessie Potteiger, 202-576, Angela Piazza, 191, Danielle Tuttle, 190, Olivia Doraski, 188, and Joey Ewell, 184.

In the 9:00 Trio, Alex Gage just missed a 400 series; his games of 126, 139 and 130 were good for a 395 series.  Ryleigh Gough continued her hot streak with games of 121, 113, and 125, 92 pins over average for the day.  Some other good scores:  Isaac Trickett, 128 (43 over), Addriana Conway, 112 (35 over), Kyleigh Grandon, 133 (33 over), and Jason Schaefer, 119 (30 over).

For the 11:00 Trio, Kassie Fedor had the high scores with 201-543.  Wilson Jackson was 126 pins over his 107 average with his games of 153, 179, and 115.  Barrett Jackson also bowled well, with games of 162, 150, and 156; Barrett’s average is 129.  Other nice games:  Adam Norris, 169 (37 over), Billy Potteiger, 169 (37 over), Austin Wise, 147 (36 over), and Nathan Phillips, 164 (35 over).

And, as promised, the 11:00 Trio scores from last week:   Clark Jackson was 73 pins over his average with a very nice 198 game.  Other good games:  Kassie Fedor, 201, Ericq Williams, 147 (39 over), Lauren Sanchez, 172 (38 over), Nathan Phillips, 163 (34 over), and Ian Huebner, 105 (31 over).

For the PeeWees, Paige Johannsmeier rolled 114, Hunter Turnbaugh rolled 106, and Piper Johannsmeier shot 100.




This week’s upcoming fundraisers geared towards rebuilding downtown Garrettsville.

#Garrettsville Strong Pilsner at Main Street Grille

On Sale Now -  Every now and then life throws you the opportunity to do something great. At Main Street that moment came in the form of a tragic fire across the street on March 22nd. But we knew what had to be done. We brewed a style almost as old as the town itself…This German Pilsner is clean and crisp with a beautiful floral hop character to it and a dry finish. By purchasing this beer you now have the power to help rebuild Garrettsville at your very fingertips because 100% of the proceeds from every glass sold are being donated to the Rebuild Garrettsville fund. Never knew power could taste so good did you? Well then, drink up! We were strong before, but now we’re #GarrettsvilleStrong.  ABV 5%, IBU’s 33.


Brew Feast at Main Street Grille & Brewing Co

May 3 – Main Street Grille will be hosting a brew feast with silent auction on May 3rd. All proceeds from the silent auction will be donated to the GarrettsvilleStrong rebuild fund. Contact Peggy Kepich for additional info 440-636-3139.


Garrettsville Subway

May 7 – Eat at the Garrettsville Subway on May 7th (all day) and 20% of proceeds of all sales will be donated to #GarrettsvilleStrong fund.

For a complete listing of fundraisers visit www.garrettsvillearea.com/help


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

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

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

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Mixed-veggie-container-gardenDon’t let a lack of time or space get in the way of gardening your way to a healthy lifestyle.  Plant a container of nutritious vegetables and herbs.  Include a few planters on the front porch, back patio or right outside the kitchen door.

All that’s needed is some potting mix, fertilizer, plants and a container with drainage holes.  A fifteen to twenty-four inch diameter pot or twenty-four to thirty-six-inch-long window box is a good starting size.  Bigger containers hold more plants and moisture longer, so they can be watered less frequently.

Check containers daily and water thoroughly as needed.  Self-watering pots need less frequent watering, allowing busy gardeners and travelers the opportunity to grow plants in pots with minimal care.

Fill the container with a well-drained potting mix.  Read the label on the container mix bag. Add a slow release organic nitrogen fertilizer, like Milorganite (milorganite.com), at planting for better results with less effort.  It provides small amounts of nutrients throughout most of the season and eliminates the need to mix and water in fertilizer throughout the growing season. Sprinkle a bit more on the soil surface midseason or when changing out your plantings.

Mix colorful flowers with nutritious vegetables for attractive, healthy results. Bright Lights Swiss Chard, pansies (their flowers are edible), colorful leaf lettuce, spinach, radishes, and trailing ivy make a great cool season combination.  Fresh-from-the-container-garden vegetables make the best -tasting salads and the greens provide Vitamins A and C as well as calcium.  Use the pansy flowers to dress up a salad or frozen in ice cubes for an added gourmet touch to beverages.

For summer, use tomatoes, peppers, eggplants or peas, beans, and cucumbers trained on a trellis.  All are packed full of nutrients and make a great vertical accent. Surround the towering vegetables with purple basil, tri-color sage, carrots, beets and a colorful trailing annual like verbena, lantana, or bidens.

Don’t forget to squeeze in a few onions or garlic.  The fragrant foliage can be decorative and these vegetables help lower blood sugar and cholesterol, while aiding in digestion.

So be creative and add a few small-scale, attractive vegetables high in nutritional value to a variety of containers this season.

Pictured above are (left to right): Bottom - Lexi Schultz, Sarah Shearer, Gracie Pignaloso, Angela Vanhorn, Chloe Pfile, Madi VanKirk, Maddy Cline Top - Coach Dan Masiello, Scott Vanhorn, Meg Visocan, Angela Masiello, Torrie Gall, Anna Jo Weaver, Emma Lawrence, Shelby Mayes, Coach Tom VanKirk, David Pignaloso Not pictured - Autumn Belviy and Hailey Eckelberry

Pictured above are (left to right): Bottom – Lexi Schultz, Sarah Shearer, Gracie Pignaloso, Angela Vanhorn, Chloe Pfile, Madi VanKirk, Maddy Cline
Top – Coach Dan Masiello, Scott Vanhorn, Meg Visocan, Angela Masiello, Torrie Gall, Anna Jo Weaver, Emma Lawrence, Shelby Mayes, Coach Tom VanKirk, David Pignaloso
Not pictured – Autumn Belviy and Hailey Eckelberry

Garrettsville - We are proud to announce that Garrettsville Youth Softball and the Ohio Outlaws have put together a team of local 12u and out of town players to raise money for the rebuilding of the businesses lost in the fire in Garrettsville a few weeks ago. We have 7 Garrettsville girls, 4 Crestwood, and 3 out of towner’s joining together for the cause along with local and Outlaw coaches!

There will be a fund raising scrimmage vs Crestwood Heat 14u April 25th @ 6pm at the fields in Shalersville Park on 303 off the 44 exit of the Ohio Turnpike. Feel free to come out and root the girls on. Cash donations or non-perishable food or household items will be accepted at the game. No donation is required to attend.

We will also be taking our “Garrettsville Strong” team to a tournament in Akron May 3-4th. The tournament director has graciously donated a large portion of our tournament fees back to the fund. Each family is donating per player to play in the tournament as well. Our uniform is the fund raising t-shirts offered by the Weekly Villager with the players numbers on the back, so most all donations go directly to the fund.

The Garrettsville business community has always generously supported the softball ladies and we felt we needed to do something to give back for all the years of support!

Special thanks to Warren Wolff, president of the Ohio Outlaws and Adam Acord, head coach of Outlaws Silver 12u for their support in this effort, along with coach Chris of the Crestwood Heat. Several local girls play for the Outlaws and other travel softball organizations and its fitting we could collaborate Recreational and Travel players and just play some softball.

The link listed below provides info on the early bird pre-season tournament in Akron http://www.thesoftballzone.com/vb3/other-tournaments-friendlies-scrimmages/56571-2nd-annual-north-akron-warmup.html

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

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

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

hattiebooksMantua -  On Sunday, May 4, from 1 – 3p.m. Son of Hattie and Richard Larlham, Richard Charles Larlham will be reading from and signing copies of his new book, “The Old Man and Me.” This book details the entertaining tales of his childhood growing up on a farm in rural Ohio during the “Golden Years.”

Susan Busch, mother of a child with Deletion 22q. 11 syndrome and friend of Hattie Larlham, will be signing and reading from her book, “Yearning for Normal.” This heartfelt memoir follows the journey she and her son took pushing through the struggle of his disease towards hope.

Their inspiring books and copies of “Up Syndrome” by Megan Abner and “Dear Children” by Hattie Larlham will all be available for purchase ($5 – $20).

Hattie Larlham will also be showcasing its many agencies and departments at the open house. Take tours of the facility, enjoy yummy Hattie’s Café treats, and interact with Hattie’s individuals and staff. You’ll have the opportunity to explore Hattie’s different agencies, seek job opportunities, and walk away with amazing Mothers’ Day and Father’s Day gifts.

All are welcome as this event is open to the public.

For more information, visit: http://share.hattielarlham.org/hattie-larlham-hosts-open-house-and-book-signing/

andover-hardware-sign-club-Spring-Gas-Up-ShowWayne Township - The Ashtabula County Antique Engine Club will start off their 33rd year with their annual Spring Gas-Up Show scheduled for Saturday, May, 10th.  The Club was formed 33 years ago and holds several events throughout the summer.  Club members open their beautiful grounds at 4026 St. Rt. 322 in Wayne Township, Ohio, on the 10th for members to display projects completed over the past winter and to bring out other items.  The Agricultural Heritage Museum and the P & LE Passenger Depot Museum both will be open during the Show.  The Club will be serving delicious food so you can come and stay the whole day.  In conjunction with the one day show there will also be a 2 day Flea Market which will be held both Saturday and Sunday.  Hours will be 9 am to 4 pm and there is a small donation asked for admission on Saturday.

The Ashtabula County Antique Engine Club is a non-profit organization dedicated to the purpose of the collection, preservation, restoration, and exhibition of engines, vehicles, machinery, and other items of historical value.  The grounds is home to two railroad depots moved there from the town of Andover several years ago, a 1930 era gas station, an Agricultural Heritage Museum, a general store, and a one room school house along with several other display buildings.  Volunteers have restored several engines, tractors, and other pieces of equipment which will be on display along with items from Club members.  Work has begun on their newest projects which include an addition to the Fairbanks Morse building and the moving of an oil field building and engine from Bullion, PA.

Hope to see everyone at our Spring Gas-Up Show and we hope you will come back and visit us at our really big show scheduled for July 4th through the 6th which is always a very fun filled weekend for ACAEC and for all of Ashtabula County.  Other events scheduled for the Show Grounds are the Lenape Indian Nation’s Native American Indian Powwow which will be held on June 20 through June 22, a Bluegrass Festival on August 15th and 16th, the annual Arts and Crafts Fair sponsored by the Andover United Methodist Church during the Labor Day weekend, the Lakeland Chapter of the AACA’s Antique Car and Truck Show on Sunday, September 14th, and winds up with ACAEC’s annual Fall Show on September 20th. For additional information please visit the Club’s website at www.ashtabulaantiqueengineclub.net.


Garrettsville - April 14 ~ Garrettsville-Hiram Rotary Club moves to new location, time.  Beginning on April 21, the club will be trying out a change to meeting at noon in Cal’s II to accommodate today’s busier schedules and altered commercial circumstances.  Give it a try.

The president-elect, Delores McCumbers spoke of her visit to the Kent club to observe proceedings at a club which meets at noon and how things are organized.  The times, they are a-changin’.

John Wolfe will be the official elector at the District Conference—April 25-27 at Quail Hollow where changes in by-laws will be discussed and voted on.  Local clubs should be doing this as well, every five years.

The annual roadside clean-up is scheduled for April 26, with Boy scouts and Interact students on board; there is a track meet on that same day but adjustments will be made.

The club gratefully accepted a generous contribution from the Aurora club, to be funneled through the district coffers for use in activation in conjunction with the #GarrettsvilleStrong effort to rebuild after the disastrous fire and highlight Rotary contributions to the community.  Similarly acknowledged was the “Garrettsville Day” fund-raiser  (April 23) to be held at Blazin’ Bill’s as a fellow Rotarian sponsors a benefit for the rebuilding, having undergone a comparable disaster, once-upon-a-time.  Many thanks.

Reconstruction talk ebbed and flowed.

April 21st ~ Newness flowed at the inaugural noon meeting, attended by members, guests and speakers and combinations of those categories.  Introductions were in order.

Mayor Rick Patrick spoke on the latest developments on rebuilding information, endeavoring to maintain his customary positive attitude and touching on the clean-up progress involving the individual owners & insurance concerns, permits from various agencies (Rep. Dave Joyce helping with EPA matters)and plans for summer activities( i.e. Summerfest, Cruise Nights, etc.) and how they might be affected by issues of sidewalks, parking, utilities relocation, fencing, etc.  He also directed attention to the Garrettsville People Tree which is collecting funds for individual tenants displaced by the fire.

James A. Garfield Local School District Superintendent Ted Lysiak gave a brief overview of the Straight A Schools  Fund Grant project going on in the district which will re-locate the fifth and sixth graders to the Central Campus of Excellence in a brand new $4 million building AND supply all students in the district with laptop computers, as well as re-purposing the Park Ave. building in partnerships with the Cleveland-area YMCA and the Portage County Educational Services Center.  Ground was being broken even as he spoke.  Also on the calendar,   an official groundbreaking ceremony—with pomp, circumstance and high-powered officials—on May 8 AND  the dedication of the new historical marker, initiated by Julie Thompson, commemorating the 1935 train robbery in Garrettsville; ceremony and other activities to be held in the Iva Walker Auditorium.

It was a good meeting.  Come and check out Rotary.


Rally ‘Round the Flag, Boys…and Girls!!!

This is no time to be falling into disputes that could derail the downtown reconstruction efforts before they get truly off of the ground.

#GarrettsvilleStrong has been up front about the purpose of the financial efforts being made from the very beginning.  It’s all about rebuilding, moving on, emerging bigger and better than ever before.  It is not , repeat, NOT, intended to compensate the individual owners and/or tenants of the buildings which were destroyed.  That is a can of worms (see :Megascolides australis) that no one in their right mind would choose to open when things need to move along with all deliberate speed.  Why?

Well, first of all, who and what qualifies?  Owners?  Tenants?  Fully insured? Under-insured?  Value of stock?  Cost of replacement?  Value of the commercial “draw” to the community?  Value of the “ambience”?  Contribution to the community?  When questions like these morph into who likes who better and whose merchandise was cuter, full-scale war fare is likely to break out and the cause of progress takes a back seat, waaaay back.

Second, when is this going to happen?  Empty the coffers right away to ease the immediate pain of disaster?  Hand out dribs and drabs at a time to whoever has the saddest story (Fierce competition here)?  Wait until it’s all rebuilt and help cover the cost of the grand opening?  Put it on the village Christmas wish list?

AND…how much? Offer a percentage of the insurance coverage?  Equal amounts to everyone? More for property owners?  More for business owners? Base the payment on the previous year’s tax duplicate as representative of the business’s contribution to the local economy?

Folks, this way lies madness…not to mention a tidal wave of frustration and hard feelings that would do no one any good and probably negate much of the good will and community feeling that has been evident in the widespread reaction to the event itself and in the way we all carry on as a community.  #GarrettsvilleStrong!

If individuals would like to make contribution to the folks, bless their hearts, who lost everything and are   only now beginning to emerge from the shock of the actual event to the shock of contemplating what the REAL losses were and what could be involved in coming back, make your directed contributions to the Garrettsville People Tree.  Community is the focus there and the burned-out ones are part of our community.

#GarrettsvilleStrong  is about REbuilding.  It’s about the nuts and bolts, the nitty and gritty, the down and dirty details of what has to come back : parking, fence removal, sidewalks, streetscape, utilities replacement & relocation (underground  electrical service would be nice), landscaping, design proposals, architectural features, specific donations and dedications (civic groups and individuals), plenty of things we don’t always think about, but have to BE thought about.  And, of course, what’s going to  come back in that space?

Here’s where we can all make a contribution.  Have you been thinking about having a small business of your own?  Might it be a ”niche” business that could draw customers from a wide area for your specific expertise? (Bless you,  Shaker Tree.  Bless you, Clock Man  Bless you, T&B Tools)  Do you know someone who fits this description?  Have you a hobby or collection that could form the basis of a business downtown?  Get thinking, out there!  We DO NOT need another  place to buy pizza, but a pastry shop might make it, especially if folks could watch the chef make gorgeous  icing roses or fabulous brownies or ice cream.  Think something connected with the Headwaters Trail.  Think about it.  Think Chagrin Falls.  Think Hudson.  Think Garrettsville into the future.

The place has been a commercial hub since its founding in 1804.  John Garrett had the foresight to not only bring a mill to serve the local farming community, but to bring a blacksmith, one Abraham Dyson, the equivalent of Lowe’s and Home Depot rolled into one, at the time he came over the mountains from Delaware.  The maple syrup business was huge at one time, over 50,000 gal a year by one account.  The Root Store (Chic & Shabby building) was the county’s first “department store” in 1850.  The village had the first paved main street in Portage County (The mud had got pretty deep in the rainy season—bad for business).   This is a village that can think big.  Think about it.