Newton Falls – August has finally arrived, bringing with it the smells of nearly-autumn air and sounds of back-to-school shopping, but for those residents and visitors patronizing the main street businesses of Newton Falls, more sights are changing than just a new page on the calendar. Various storefronts have a new coat of paint and fresh signs announcing the company within, previously empty windows are now filled with delightful fare and charming wares and, lining both sides of the road marking the center of town, streetlamps escorting passersby have been given their new drapery to celebrate the coming season.
In addition to the very important responsibility of lighting the way through town at dusk and beyond, the streetlamps also help to beautify the area as they support not only the illuminating globes perched atop the pole, but also allow a flag to flutter patriotically in the breeze, a basket to securely hang so that flowers may cascade from it, and provide a place for a colorful banner to welcome friends and beckon them along the path. These banners complement the seasons, rotating in and out with their calendar counterparts. Currently, for summer, a bright sunburst on a bold blue background is flying and soon, when fall is officially here, a scene with faux foliage in colors of rust, red and orange will be found. However, for quite a while, one season was left out of the revolving placards on parade as the city did not have a set of banners for the spring quarter! When winter was done and the snowy white flakes on a backdrop of red were tucked away until their time the next year, the posts attached to the streetlamps were simply bare with nothing to decorate them but the thin air.
To remedy that situation, the Newton Falls Area Commerce Association sponsored the production of a new banner and, after months of planning and discussion, the presentation of an array of diverse sample designs for the membership to vote on and offer input, and a few tweaks to incorporate support of the small business movement, the concept became something tangible. Although manufacturing difficulties delayed its debut for another whole rotation by missing the spring deadline, it was successfully unveiled this year! The design itself was created by yours truly during my tenure as Vice President, and the elements of the pro bono project were inspired by familiar landmarks that are special to longtime residents and intriguing to first-time visitors alike. The final version is a collage trio of the three most famous places in the city: the historic covered bridge, the namesake waterfall and the water tower which looms behind it, all set against a bright blue springtime sky. There are in fact two designs, identical except for the messages running down the side, one which welcomes residents and visitors, the other encourages all to support the community economy by shopping local. The new banners are intended as streetlamp trimming during the interim months between winter and summer but are versatile in appropriateness for any time of the year – especially with the cheerful messages alternating down the street.
So while you’re taking a leisurely stroll through downtown Newton Falls, be sure to stop and smell the flowers (in the hanging baskets, of course!) and take a moment to look up – you’re certain to find a beautiful banner waving back at you, just one of the special additions to improve the view!