Mantua – At their last meeting, Village Council approved a special event request from Angie Hunter of the Mantua Potato Festival Committee to host a family-friendly film festival at Village Park. The free events would take place in the evenings at Village Park on the fourth Friday of the summer months: June 24th, July 22nd, and August 26th. “The Committee is often reaching out to the community to ask for donations to support our annual Festival, and we wanted the opportunity to give back,” explained Potato Festival Chairperson Angie Hunter. “This fun summer event that will allow parents the chance to get outside with their kids for a fun evening at our beautiful park,” Ms. Hunter hopes to make the outdoor films an annual event. While the movies will be shown at no charge, concessions will be available for purchase, and concession sales will benefit the Potato Festival event in September.

In park news, Councilman Marty Hura noted that the vehicle turn-around at the river in Village Park is nearly completed. The project was completed through donations from Camp Hi Canoe Livery and Brugmann Sand & Gravel, with the Village Service Department providing the labor.

In his report, village Police Chief Harry Buchert updated council in the status of the dispatch contracts. He shared that because of pending changes to the State’s 911 procedures, in addition to the fact that Garrettsville will cease providing dispatch services in July, his department is in the process of working with area communities to expand the village’s dispatch program. The program could potentially include the Garrettsville-Freedom-Nelson Joint Fire District, the Mantua-Shalersville Fire District, the Windham Volunteer Fire Department, the Community EMS District in Garrettsville, Hiram Village Police and Fire Departments, Garrettsville Village Police, and the Windham Police Department. Chief Buchert will keep council apprised of any developments in the process. In similar news, the chief asked council to approve an ordinance retroactively confirming part-time police officer Stephen Gregg, who was hired to the department in mid March.

In other news, Mayor Linda Clark noted that as a part of the ODOT project to replace the bridge on Canada Road, local residents should be aware that their electric services may be disrupted during the hours of 9 am to 4 pm on May 11th through May 13th. She also noted that the bridge project would take an estimated 75 days, but that the official start date had not yet been determined. She will keep residents advised as the project moves forward.

Next, Terri Vechery from the Landmark Commission received council’s approval to add interns as needed to the commission’s project of documenting 40 historical homes within the village. Ms. Vechery introduced two interns currently working on the project, Jacob and Alex, Hiram College students. Since starting the project this spring, they have managed to document the best practices to streamline documentation, which includes gathering information on each historic home built before 1945, which includes taking photos and documenting unique architectural features, as well as researching the construction dates and deed documentation. She noted that funding for the interns is covered through a Hiram College grant that encourages students to become involved in not-for-profit organizations in surrounding communities.

The next Village Council meeting will be held on Tuesday, May 17th at 7 pm, and residents are encouraged to attend.