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Well, it’s been happening here in “the ‘ville”.  Holidays and then some items of local interest…to wit :

*The new coffee shop, The Cellar Door,  in the old feed mill appears to be attracting a varied clientele and good vibes.  There is space available for special events and cool comestibles for consumption.  Check it out.
*And if you’d like to pick up something to read while you sit there with your coffee, take a run out to the Garrettsville branch of the Portage County District Library; check out the new electronic sign next to the building, result of an Eagle Scout project—more on that later—funds from Friends of the Library, and local donations, as well as the bonanza from last summer’s Queen of Hearts 50/50 drawing.  The sign posts hours of operation, upcoming programs (some doozies coming up), all kinds of information you can get without ever leaving your car.  Great addition!

*If activity is your thing—New Year’s Resolutions and all that—give another look at the Y; it has new programs and new personnel popping up all of the time.  Our last issue of The Villager featured a broad overview of what’s cookin’ at the Y and you may have noticed that there’s something for just about everybody.  The Silver Sneakers program is a bargain and an opportunity to try out some little thing that might tickle your fancy (“You tickle my fancy and I’ll tickle yours….”  Isn’t that a line from an old Marx Brothers film?).  There is equipment available, there are instructors, there are friends to participate with.  Well, they might not be your friends to start with but a few miles together on the treadmill or the elliptical trainer and it’s a done deal.  Membership is your entry fee for most classes, yoga, spinning, adult volleyball, whatever.  Come in and pick up information on what’s happening when.  Or read your Villager!

Having a new operations manager, Kim Curry, on the job at the Garrettsville branch is going to be a big bonus. She knows the community, having grown up and gone to school here.  She’s a demon organizer, having  been a moving force behind community soccer leagues here (Doesn’t hurt that husband, Jim, just got an award for volunteer coaches at the high school level—statewide!).  She knows how to keep a weather eye on the activities on the schedule and in the planning stages.  She’s open to suggestions.  Pickle ball, anyone?

The place has got space for all kinds of people and things going on; if you have an event that would be too big for your living room, check out available rooms.  It’s a great resource, c’mon down and use it, everybody out there, COMMUNITY is what it’s all about.  If you’re within driving distance, it’s for YOU.

*Two Garfield graduates have also been on the radar lately.  Actually, one of them was on the TV, Fox News 8, being interviewed about a project involving a $40,000  grant of some sort won by a company, of  which he is the CEO, for developing a “app” meant to help in combating the horrendous scourge of opiate addiction which is afflicting Portage County, Ohio, and the nation.  This illustrious 2007 graduate, Jared Sheehan, is the son of Cindy and Jeff Sheehan and the grandson of Ruth Sheehan.  Check with them for details.  Proud much?  Doesn’t hurt that David Arnold, his uncle (and another Garfield alumnus), knows a thing or two about the television business in the Cleveland market.

*And then there was an alumna (Do I know my Latin or what?), class of 1975, who came to talk to Matt Massey’s American History classes because of 2016 being the 75th anniversary of the bombing of Pearl Harbor.  It seems that the uncle of Lucille Ann Van Alstine (You might remember her as Lou Ann Kubinec in her school days) was on the USS West Virginia on that fateful day, December 7, 1941 and was one of those lost…not the only one from Portage County, a Derthick of Mantua, also perished, according to the Record-Courier.  At any rate, “Uncle Willie”, who had just observed his 22nd birthday on December 6, was gone but all kinds of documentation was missing until Lou Ann and her husband returned to the area to be with her father, John Kubinec, in Nelson.  In the process of clearing  out the homestead, a trove of information and memorabilia surfaced and has now become the focus of a very interesting  presentation by the Van Alstines.  Look for a possible program to be sponsored by the James A. Garfield Historical Society.  Any information on the young William Kubinec or the local events surrounding him or his passing can be brought to the attention of the historical society to be passed on to Lou Ann, who is writing this up.

*The Garrettsville-Hiram Rotarians included caroling to Bob and Darlene Jackson as part of their Yuletide Revels at the Christmas  party at the home of Al and Carol Donley on December 19.  The annual event featured good eats and the White Elephant gift exchange as well as a Garfield letterman’s jacket for this year’s exchange student, Louis Nonte, who was a soccer star this season.  A good time was had by all.

*Also on the nineteenth of December was the Christmas party of the James A. Garfield Historical Society, held at Cal’s II, Sky Plaza, Garrettsville.  A cheerful gathering, it lasted long enough to hear reindeer on the roof and an exchange of “Ho, Ho, Ho’s”.  The next regular meeting will be on January 16 at the historic Mott Building on Main St., Garrettsville.