Mantua – Mantua’s award-winning ART on the HILL was quite the place to be last Saturday, as a whole slew of groups, individuals, commercial entities, organizations and plain ol’ wine tasters showed up on one of the summer’s nicest days yet to wander up and down the hill itself, take a peek at the goods on offer, participate in the contests, auctions and general good times, as well as meet and greet the neighbors and visitors who came out. The Portage County Library District showcased their offerings, there were two food trucks and four wineries operating, a children’s book author displayed his works—including one about chocolate milk cows. There were soaps aplenty and some wild metal sculpture lawn décor. Frost Glass had some interesting & idiosyncratic pieces on display. One individual touted something called ”Bowenwork” as good for people and animals(Could the cats and I go together?). There was a park bench dedication in memory of Joseph Baglia, Sr. One could pick up wood goods, pet accessories (What? They want matching beds and collars?), sauces, spices or maple syrup, stones and stoneware, re-cycled/re-purposed/vintage everything, jewelry or Joe Leonard originals, wearables of every description.

There was the usual 50/50 drawing and a Chinese auction. I won a set of cooler glasses from Costco…and I had to stop and ask the Costco person where the heck there was a Costco in the neighborhood. The display of photographs was cool and allowed for a “People’s Choice” award. I went for the “Mail Pouch Tobacco one. The interior of the building where all of that was located was an outstanding example of what could be done with an antique building.

The support from local businesses—Rapid Electric, presenting sponsor, for example—was outstanding.

There was also a heads-up for another “coming attraction”—“Quilts in the Village”—presented by the DMRC (Downtown Mantua Revitalization Corp.) and sponsored by Frost Glass of Mantua and Hexagon Family Enterprises. This will be coming on September 16, taking place in the Hilltop Christian Church from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Entry forms are available and vendors of various quilting-oriented goods (You know who you are) are invited to apply for spaces. Quilts will not be judged but will be eligible for Viewers’ Choice selection. The more quilts the merrier! They will be displayed, for the most part, by folding over the back of church pews; information, as available—quilter, age, fabric, etc., for example– will be on display with each quilt.

Last year’s show was lovely and informative; this year’s will also include a High Tea, with tablecloths , tea service, quiches, sandwiches, a variety of cookies and, of course, tea, served in the fellowship hall of the church. Lift your little fingers and enjoy.