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Garfield

Garrettsville - The James A. Garfield Elementary School music teacher Mr. Ken Fox and the third graders kicked off a celebration for the winter season on Wednesday, December 1st. As the first snow of the season fell softly outside, the children presented their audience with a wonderful mixture of music, poetry, chants and musical instruments.

Garrettsville – Garrettsville-Hiram Rotarians, having received a taste of   the Power of the Pen at their meeting on November 17, affirmed their support for the program, directed at the Garfield Middle   School by Mrs. Jackie Lovelace.  This support took the form of a $600 contribution toward the facilitation of  the district tournament to be held at Garfield in the spring.  The club also briefly considered the possibilities in reaching out to middle school-age students with information about the goals and activities of Rotary at all levels.

Other items on the agenda included: (1) possible follow-up on the Renaissance 490 presentation by Rev. Fred Youngen, acknowledging the helpful community activities involved and the resources required to carry them out, (2) including the center as a future program, (3) recruiting new members, (4) planning for the Santa Delivery Project–truck needed, sign-ups at Business Works and McCumbers-Brady Realty, tradition since the ‘60’s,  (5) beginning plans for Family Week coming up in February–sponsorships and donations will be solicited after the first of the year, contact any Rotarian, (6) ideas for new programs, (7) assembly at the Jackson Estates on December 13 at 6:30… CHRISTMAS  PARTEEE !

Of the 611 school districts in the state of Ohio James A. Garfield schools are beginning to set themselves apart from most. The dedication and professionalism of teachers, staff and administrators in the district have earned continued academic distinction. Furthermore, wise economic decisions have made the district the best value in Portage County and the third best value in the state when it comes to providing an excellent education to our kids.

The district earned its first state Excellent rating for the 2007/08 year and again in 2008/09; the only other district in Portage County to achieve this was Aurora City Schools. Last year, 2009/10, the James A. Garfield Schools were rated Excellent with Distinction, earning a perfect 26 out of 26 indicators, AYP (average yearly progress), Value Added and the Performance Index (101). The high school has been identified as Excellent for the last seven (7) consecutive years, and last year the elementary school also earned an Excellent with Distinction ‘perfect’ rating, making history as the first Garfield School building with this distinction.

Last week the state reported 74% of our third graders passed the Ohio Reading Achievement Assessment given in October. With that high achievement, we anticipate them scoring in the 90% range on the spring test.

These continued results are achieved by our hard-working and dedicated teachers. They inspire our students to work hard and excel! This Excellent with Distinction rating was achieved with us having the third lowest per pupil expenditure of the 81 districts earning this rating out of 611 school districts. Garfield has spent the least per pupil in Portage County the last ten years. Last year the per pupil amount was $7,697, which is 27% less than the state average of $10,512. It is obvious that both the adults and students are appreciative and work every day to keep the costs down while working to continue to improve the good education for the students. It is heartwarming to feel the warmth and respect that is shared by residents, faculty, staff, administration and kids. Respect, hard work and dedication produces awesome results from everyone working together!

Garrettsville - Anyone driving by the high school the day before Thanksgiving might have been surprised to see a flock of turkeys on the front lawn.  To kick off the 10th Annual James A. Garfield High School Food Drive this year, a new tradition was born, called the Turkey Trot.

Runners collected donations ahead of time to move ahead on the starting line and students bought tickets to watch the race and mashed potato-eating contest in the gym.  Runners dressed up in every interpretation of turkey, with a pilgrim or two thrown in for good measure and raced through the halls, avoiding obstacles along the way.

Mr. Bennett, cross-country coach and highest donation collector, was the race’s victor.  In total, the staff and students raised $817 towards hunger relief in this community.  The Food Drive lasts two weeks and typically helps collect over 10,000 items.

Also new this year will be curbside can collection on Dec. 7th.  Look for the students dressed in hand-painted can outfits in front of the high school all day during their lunch and study halls and consider dropping off a bag of food for the food drive.

Pictured above is the James A. Garfield Band Booster Two Grand Dinner Winner Cathy Lukasko of Brookfield, Ohio.

Garrettsville – The First Annual TWO GRAND DINNER reverse raffle and silent auction was held at the Sugar Bush Golf Club on Saturday, November 13, 2010.  A packed house enjoyed appetizers courtesy of Glenna and Quentin Spaur, dinner courtesy of Guido’s of Ravenna and amazing desserts made by Sherry Jones and Pat Stoneman.  Ticket sales were limited to 300 and each number was drawn randomly from a bingo machine.  Every 10th  number drawn received a prize.  The grand prize winner was Cathy Lukasko of Brookfield, Ohio, aunt of one of the band members.

Throughout the evening, guests participated in a HEADS or TAILS 50/50 raffle (winner, Casey Everett), a weekend getaway in a Pirates’ Treasure Chest (winner, Mary Koval), 50/50 raffle (winner, Jeff Pesecky) and The LOTTERY TREE raffle (winner, Betty Mishler).  Multiple winners took home prizes and Strawberry Daiquiri LolliPops from the LOLLIPOP TREE.

Guests also bid on and won 36 different items in our silent auction ranging from a 3-person Lake Erie Fishing Charter, to Fossil handbags and everything in between.  A huge thank you goes to all who donated, purchased tickets and worked tirelessly to hold this event!

The Garfield Band Boosters sponsored the dinner to raise funds for new uniforms for the marching band and to benefit the band programs, grades 5-12.  The current uniforms worn by the MARCHING PRIDE are 27 + years old and are in dire need of replacement.

Organizers of the event are excited for next year and will have tickets available for purchase in October 2011!   Go Band!!!

Taking the approach that it certainly does take a whole village to raise a healthy child, the state of Ohio now mandates that schools are somewhat responsible for keeping children from becoming obese.

Governor Ted Strickland signed Senate Bill 210 — the Healthy Choices for Healthy Children bill — on June 10, 2010. The law mandates that school districts implement specific activities to inhibit obesity, such as measuring each student’s Body Mass Index, offering healthier meals in lunchroom cafeterias, and providing more opportunities for physical activity.
Childhood obesity is considered one of the most profound public health issues confronting Ohio and the nation today, according to Healthy Choices for Healthy Children, a coalition of organizations dedicated to preventing and decreasing childhood obesity in Ohio. The coalition advocates for public policy in Ohio that supports research-based solutions to the childhood obesity epidemic, such as this new law.

“The ABC’s of ending childhood obesity are accountability, bipartisanship, and comprehensive solutions,” says Nationwide Children’s Hospital CEO Steve Allen, M.D, a coalition leader and promoter of the legislation. “Accountability means holding everyone that interacts with our children accountable to higher standards, from parents to schools to businesses. Bipartisanship means lawmakers from across the political spectrum taking responsibility for our children’s health. And, comprehensive solutions mean making change at all the places our children interact with food and exercise. This legislation accomplishes all three, in a way that will help our children avoid becoming the first generation in Ohio history to live shorter lives than their parents.”

The law is designed to improve the nutritional value of foods offered during the regular and extended school day, and to raise the bar for physical education. The bill also provides for Body Mass Index (BMI) screenings upon school entry and in the 3rd, 5th and 9th grades, and a pilot program for daily physical activity during the school day.

An amended version of the bill includes opt-out waivers for a requirement of 30 minutes of physical activity and BMI screenings for school districts demonstrating financial hardship. The Ohio House of Representatives passed an amended version of the Senate bill, creating a pilot program for districts to provide 30 minutes of daily physical activity in grades K-12. Districts participating in the pilot will be recognized on their district report card.

Key provisions of the bill include offering more nutritional choices for the a la carte menu and vending machines, providing free breakfast to all students eligible for free and reduced-price lunches when funds are appropriated, creating a statewide council with teacher representatives to address childhood obesity, creating a school district waiver for the body mass index (BMI) measurement requirement, and incorporating the importance of healthy eating habits and physical activity into the health curriculum. Implementation will begin during the 2011-12 school year, starting with BMI measurements taken for students.

This is nothing new for local students at Garrettsville’s James A. Garfield School District, says Superintendent Charles Klamer. “For the past five years, freshmen and sophomores have had their BMI measured and we research ways to lower it. In 2008/09 we partnered in a wellness grant with the Portage County Health Department and Kent State for BMI testing in grades 3 and 6.”

Additionally, Sue Rossi, grade 5-8 physical education teacher, was awarded a Kohl’s Fitness Grant last year, and again this year. This includes a partnership with Akron Children’s Hospital for 7th and 8th graders. Along with BMI testing, Rossi incorporates instruction on how to control BMI with physical activity and sensible eating habits.
“I believe Garfield Schools have been proactive with academics but also with solid physical education activities,” says Klamer. “Teaching proper exercise and nutritional information are important.”

In terms of providing healthy eating options, the superintendent says, “Our cafeteria has offered fresh vegetables and fruit
every day with lunch for over 25 years. Our secondary schools only offer limited sweet items. The Garfield Schools will be ahead or on target to implement the activities specified by this new law.”

Considering that 70 percent of the cost in health care is related to chronic disease, and obesity is a major cause of chronic disease, this law is expected to help to reduce the disease burden on taxpayers by helping children learn to lead healthy, active lifestyles early in life. It is hoped to improve students’ future quality of life and also help to take billions of dollars in unnecessary costs out of Ohio’s health care system.

The Garfield G-Men fell just short in their bid for first post season win in school history dropping a 22-7 decision to the Chagrin Falls Tigers.

While two big plays were all the G-Men defense would allow, it was the missed opportunities that doomed Garfield in the end. Garfield’s first offensive play went for 12 yards and a first down. Unfortunately, the G-Men would not get another first down until the first play of the second quarter.

Freshman Zach Hoffmann’s field goal attempt was blocked, allowing Chagrin Falls to take over on downs. The ensuing drive spearheaded by a Tiger running back bursting through the line for one of Chagrin Falls’ big plays. The 45-yards set up the Tiger’s first score, the failed two-point conversion left a 6-0 score after the first quarter.

The second frame was more offense but not much to show for as the Tigers tallied another touchdown for a 12-0 halftime lead.

The first play of the second half saw the Tigers pitch left and run 63 yards for the score,  making a 19-0 deficit. The Tiger would then hold Garfield on the next drive on a fourth and goal at the one-yard line. A Chagrin Falls time-consuming drive led to a field goal, putting the game out of reach, 22-7.

The talented Garfield team had not been shut out all season and that did not change last week as junior Bobby Bright punched it in from 1 yard out and Hoffmann’s kick made it 22-7.

The snowy surface and slick ball made playing rough at times and grounded the G-Men air attack. Garfield was averaging 178 yards passing and 200 yards rushing was held to just 227 yards of total offense, mostly due to the weather.

This talented senior group leaves some big shoes to fill.

Garrettsville – Where? Garrettsville. You know, north of Ravenna, tucked up in the corner of Portage County. And for the many who didn’t know we existed, or barely gave us a passing notice, we are definitely on the map now, thanks to the election last week.
James A. Garfield graduates, Tommie Jo Marsilio and Kathleen Clyde, are hometown girls with hometown values. Each girl threw her hat into the race for a chance to bring about a change in government by looking at it from a whole new perspective.
Congratulations to Kathleen Clyde, State Representative of Ohio’s 68th District. Kathleen is looking forward to fighting for our values, jobs, kids and seniors in the Statehouse. She will focus on economic development in our area and work to strengthen our education system. Kathleen thanks everyone for their support during her campaign and looks forward to their continued support during her term in office. She is ready to listen to her constituents whose tremendous knowledge and experience will be her most important asset in Columbus to help her make a difference in these difficult times.
Congratulations to Tommie Jo Marsilio, Portage County Commissioner in winning her seat in a heated debate, breaking through the long-time Democratic control of Portage County. She is looking forward to working hard for the residents of Portage County and making sure that accountability is brought to government. Tommie Jo thanks all who have supported her in her campaign and who continue to support her as she is preparing herself to take office in January. She would like everyone to know that she is still the same person she was before she won the election – a hometown girl who works and pays taxes just like the rest of us. She welcomes the opportunity to speak with any resident about concerns they might have and promises to work toward making government serve and protect its citizens. Tommie Jo is looking forward to being your voice in the Portage County Commissioners office.
Tommie Jo would like to invite those who supported her, volunteered during her campaign, or who would like to join in the celebration of a win for the people of Portage County, to a party on Monday, November 15th at the Brimfield Comfort Inn at 6:30pm. If you would like to contact Tommie Jo you may email her at TommieJo@neo.rr.com.

Garrettsville – Where? Garrettsville. You know, north of Ravenna, tucked up in the corner of Portage County. And for the many who didn’t know we existed, or barely gave us a passing notice, we are definitely on the map now, thanks to the election last week.James A. Garfield graduates, Tommie Jo Marsilio and Kathleen Clyde, are hometown girls with hometown values. Each girl threw her hat into the race for a chance to bring about a change in government by looking at it from a whole new perspective. Congratulations to Kathleen Clyde, State Representative of Ohio’s 68th District. Kathleen is looking forward to fighting for our values, jobs, kids and seniors in the Statehouse. She will focus on economic development in our area and work to strengthen our education system. Kathleen thanks everyone for their support during her campaign and looks forward to their continued support during her term in office. She is ready to listen to her constituents whose tremendous knowledge and experience will be her most important asset in Columbus to help her make a difference in these difficult times.Congratulations to Tommie Jo Marsilio, Portage County Commissioner in winning her seat in a heated debate, breaking through the long-time Democratic control of Portage County. She is looking forward to working hard for the residents of Portage County and making sure that accountability is brought to government. Tommie Jo thanks all who have supported her in her campaign and who continue to support her as she is preparing herself to take office in January. She would like everyone to know that she is still the same person she was before she won the election – a hometown girl who works and pays taxes just like the rest of us. She welcomes the opportunity to speak with any resident about concerns they might have and promises to work toward making government serve and protect its citizens. Tommie Jo is looking forward to being your voice in the Portage County Commissioners office.Tommie Jo would like to invite those who supported her, volunteered during her campaign, or who would like to join in the celebration of a win for the people of Portage County, to a party on Monday, November 15th at the Brimfield Comfort Inn at 6:30pm. If you would like to contact Tommie Jo you may email her at TommieJo@neo.rr.com.

The old cliché, “on any given day” never rang truer than last week. The 1-8 Newton Falls Tigers traveled to Orwell last week to take on the 8-1 Grand Valley Mustangs. The score was what everyone expected, the winner was not. The Tigers roared into Grand Valley’s stadium and walked away with a 38-13 victory, their first since opening day. The loss turned back the Mustangs playoff hopes, missing the playoff by .2 computer points, the closest the Mustangs have been to the playoffs since 2001 when they missed he playoffs by one computer point.

The Tigers dominated the game from start to finish, with a suffocating defense and a potent offense. They allowed the Mustangs to gain just 27 yards on the ground and 150 through the air. Meanwhile, the Tigers Anthony Kline raced for 164 yards on 13 carries while teammate Matt Brazin passed for 125 yards. The victory is a great stepping-stone moving into next year.

After three straight losing seasons the Crestwood Red Devils seem to have things turning in the right direction. First-year head coach Chris Kosiorek is a big reason for that direction.

Trailing 20-3 after the first quarter the Red Devils did not fade into the cold Friday air, instead they became more inspired and outscored the Southeast Pirates 32-14 for a 35-34 victory. The Red Devils finished the contest with 187 rushing yards and 204 passing. The defense made the stops when they needed to and allowed just 79 passing yards. Southeast also missed two extra-points and failed on a two-point conversion. The Devils’ 5-5 record is the best since 2006, which was also the last season they had a winning record in conference play.

After losing four straight games to Berkshire and coming off their first losing season since 2005, the Cardinal Huskies were out to prove themselves worthy last Friday night, beating their archrival Berkshire 26-13. The victory is the program’s first win over the Badgers since that 2005 season. With the loss the Badgers fall to 1-9, completing back to back losing seasons for the first time since 2001-2002.

The Garfield G-Men proved to be the bigger and better team last Friday when they beat Windham 49-7. Windham answered Garfield’s opening touchdown drive with a touchdown on the Bombers opening drive. The fading “W” burned into the Garfield playing surface was no distraction as the G-Men ran all over it to the tune of 436 yards of total offense,  291 rushing and 145 in the air. The opening drive was all of Windham’s offense as they amassed 148 total yards.

Week 11 for the G-Men will be played at Chagrin Falls as they take on the 9-1 Tigers.

This marks the Tigers eighth playoff appearance and third straight. They are 8-7 in their 15 games played in the post season but are a very beatable team this season.

This is a 7:30 kickoff with $9 gate price or $7 presale at the school. Call 330-527-0039 for availability.

2010 GMS Lady G-Men Cross Country Team

Pictured above are (left to right) Bottom Row: Emily Prigodich , Isabella Scarl , Molly Mathews , Julia Roubic , Amanda Bartlett , Mariah Coulter , Hannah Trent Top Row: Kaylee Martin, Lizzie Gerez, Danielle Keffer, Jessica Moore, Coach Jessica Crookham, Hayliegh Hannigan, Shiann Penna, Megan Ryser, Lindsey Jones , Maddie Lininger, Brittany Alloway.

Garrettsville – The James A. Garfield girl’s Middle School cross country team made school history by winning the PTC Championship meet on October 16, 2010.  Scoring for the team were Mariah Coulter, 2nd in the county with a time of 13:16 followed closely by her teammates Shian Penna 13:51, Molly Matthews 13:58,  Amanda Bartlett 14:19,  Haylie Hannigan 14:49,  Lindsey Jones 14:51,  and Kaylee Martin 15:09.  Congratulations to all of them for a fantastic season of hard work and dedication.