Best of the Best awards ceremony Sept 18

We have completed our vote count on Ottawa County’s Best of the Best Contest. The results are most interesting. In fact, we have the top three in each category listed in The Beacon this week. We will be holding our gala Best of the Best Awards Program at Mon Ami starting at 5:30 on Thursday, September 18. Tickets may be obtained at The Beacon office on SR 53 South next to Goodwill, or from any Beacon employee. It ought to be a fun night. 

Last call for tickets for Joyful Connections’ 3rd Annual Family Frenzy which will be held this Saturday, September 13, at Catawba Township Hall starting at 6 p.m. It’s patterned after the old Family Feud TV show. Six local teams will go at it for the Championship. Judge Giesler and Commissioner Sass will try to keep the contestants under some semblance of control. Tickets are $25 per person which includes a dinner of Chicken and Ribs from Barbecue Traveler. A cash bar will also be available. Tickets must be purchased in advance at Joyful Connections by calling Sheila Powell at 567-262-3181.


Washington Properties current proposal on our website

I occasionally read the popular local Facebook page, “Talk of Port Clinton (uncensored)” and I have noted that there is some confusion from time to time by folks contributing to that page, particularly as it relates to the proposed development at Waterworks Park in Port Clinton. Since the CORD folks have put up a ballot issue for November 4 demanding a vote of the residents if anything like a sale or lease is passed by City Council in response to the proposed development by Washington Properties of Medina, I thought it might be helpful to put up the Power Point presentation given to Council in February on our website It is on the home page, just beneath the weather forecast. This way, voters will have a good idea of what they are voting for or against. 

The weekend after Labor Day is traditionally Historic Weekend at Put-in-Bay, and our friends at the Perry Group, the folks who gave us the Tall Ships and Battle of Lake Erie last year, are presenting a “Star Spangled Banner Year” for the Perry’s Victory Heritage Festival this weekend. Most of the events will be at Put-in-Bay this Saturday, September 6, starting with a wreath laying ceremony at the battle site. There will be a 12 noon reception at The Keys Restaurant, a special Historic Weekend Parade starting at 2:15, a military reenactment at 3 p.m., a special roundtable conversation about the War of 1812, a concert by the Toledo Symphony at the monument at 6 p.m., and a Harbor Illumination at dusk sponsored by the Perry Group.


Ely visits the B-17

It was quite a weekend at the Liberty Air Museum and Carl Keller Field. Remote Control airplanes, plus a visit by several vintage World War II vintage aircraft. My grandson Ely wanted to climb in the B-17 and take a look. Even though he is only 2 1/2, he was excited to see these airplanes up close. You can kind of get the scale of the size of the B-17 as Ely stands in front of one of its propellers.  

I took personal interest in an item from a recent Oak Harbor Village Council Meeting. There was discussion about the delivery of The Beacon in the Village. We have always felt that Oak Harbor was an important part of our marketplace and therefore, we want to do the best job we can on delivery. We recently lost our walk carriers, so we are currently filling in with rural route drivers. We would definitely want some walk carriers, for just a couple of hours of work. Please call our Circulation Manager, Bruce Dinse at 419-732-2154 if you are interested.

Our “Find Wylie” winner this week is Brent Neidler who was one of 196 people to find our friendly fish hiding the ad for Fitzgerald Auto on page 6C in last week’s Beacon. So, Brent wins our weekly $20 gift card from Friendship Food Stores as well as a free floor mat from our friend Tom McIntire at Captain’s Carpets, the customized carpet place at Fort Firelands. We’ll be hiding Wylie again this week, so if you find him, drop off an entry form at our office in the Beacon Place Business Center or click on the Find Wylie Icon at our website 

It is Labor Day weekend, and there is, of course, a lot going on. One of the great traditions is the annual Green Island Race hosted by Port Clinton Yacht Club this Sunday, August 31. The starts begin rolling around 9:30 in the morning. The starting line is just north and west of the mouth of the Portage River. Last time I checked, they were expecting south winds, so the spinnakers will be flying.


Avengers, art and Gem Beach Rocks

Appetite for the Arts was also held over the weekend at the big new hangar behind the Tin Goose Diner and the Liberty Air Museum. While we were there on Saturday morning, one of the “Avenger” World War II U.S. Navy Bombers arrived and was on display. Very impressive! They will have a whole fleet of those U.S. Navy Planes coming to Carl Keller Field and the museum the weekend of September 27 & 28. I watched the end of the movie “Midway” on TV Saturday night. Those Avengers were heavily featured in that American Victory that turned the tide of the war in the Pacific. Also, speaking of Appetite for the Arts, the Downtown Port Clinton Art Walk will be held on Thursday, August 28. 

Another great crowd at the United Way’s Gem Beach Rocks event on Saturday. Four great bands played all day from Noon to 8 p.m. This is a fantastic fundraiser for United Way in Ottawa County with over 200 volunteers working all of the venues. I know I enjoyed myself.  

Our “Find Wylie” winner this week is Jean Chervenak of the Cleveland area who was one of 91 people to figure out that our friendly fish was NOT hiding an ad in last week’s Beacon. So, Jean wins our weekly $20 gift card from Friendship Food Stores as well as a free doormat from our friend Tom McIntire at Captain’s Carpets, the customized carpet place at Fort Firelands. We’ll be hiding Wylie again this week, so if you find him, drop off an entry form at our office in the Beacon Place Business Center or click on the Find Wylie Icon at our website


Miracles for Melissa

Brenda Belcher and her gang at Salon 53 in Harbor Lights Landing is having a very special fundraiser this Sunday for her sister-in-law Melissa Belcher who has been diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease). Melissa was a teacher and coach in the Toledo area and a native of Fremont. She had to give up her career due to the progressive disease. The event will help offset medical expenses. They are holding a “Cut-A-Thon” this Sunday, August 17 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. They will also feature food, drinks and a special raffle. For more information, contact Brenda at 419-734-5353. 

CORRECTION: I was present when Jasmine Cupp did the interview with Bob Snyder and Ann Heckerd on the St. Vincent DePaul Food Pantry that appeared in last week’s Beacon. It IS connected to the Portage Resale Center. Several years ago, Bob Snyder created the entity as a separate non-profit corporation when Mary Heinemann donated the building that used to house Heinemann Distributing Co. for the purpose of creating something special for the community. Portage Resale Center does NOT belong to the Snyders, it belongs to the community. All cash surpluses go to local charities. 


Inter-Lake Yachting Association Regatta

I spent a lot of time over the weekend on the NEW docks at Put-in-Bay. We participated in the 121st Annual Inter-Lake Yachting Association Regatta there. The new docks are spectacular! They feature a new teak-wood look and are very solid. Yes, they were a little late getting finished thanks to our unusually cold winter, but they are worth the wait. 

While I was there, we learned about the “water crisis” in Toledo. Brenda Culler, former Sandusky Register Ottawa County correspondent, now works for ODNR Coastal Management in Sandusky and one of her main jobs is teaching folks about the algal blooms in Lake Erie, and she was notified early Saturday. I am pretty conservative politically, but I have often said “when it comes to Lake Erie, we are all environmentalists”. State Senator Randy Gardner was in Ottawa County on Tuesday visiting the Water Plant on Fremont Road. He has requested that the Ohio EPA provide testing and treatment assistance for any local water treatment system that may need it and further requested more frequent testing for microcystis. No doubt, the topic will come up when State Representative Chris Redfern holds a Town Hall Meeting at Put-in-Bay this Saturday at the Village Hall from 10 to 11:30 a.m. On my way back from the Regatta on Sunday, we spotted the green algae again and it covered the surface of the water. Perhaps the crisis in Toledo will bring about some positive action.


Family was important to Ruth Finke

I went to the funeral of Ruth Finke on Monday. She was one of my surrogate “moms” through high school and beyond. Ruth was 96 when she passed last week. I am certain she had no regrets, or at least very few. She wound up with four great kids, lots of beautiful grandchildren and even better, lots of great grandchildren. I know through my action with her family members that family was of utmost importance in her life. She was plain spoken and gave it to you straight, whether you liked what she had to say or not. She was a very lucky lady.

I received a call last week from an old friend, Carolyn Werner, who used to be the local director of the Red Cross many years ago. She is now a resident at The Vineyard on Catawba, and told me that a young couple stopped by the Community Center there and dropped off a bunch of flowers. She was curious where they came from. Well, my spies inside The Vineyard told me that the couple was just married and brought in their wedding flowers to share them with the residents there. They did not leave their names. What a sweet gesture!


There she is, Mrs. Ohio America

Cynthia Rumball of Port Clinton sent me a note this week to announce that her niece, Shaylyn (Tewers) Ford of Columbus was recently crowned “Mrs. Ohio America 2014”. She is the daughter of former Port Clinton resident Mark Tewers and granddaughter of Carolyn and the late Ron Tewers. Doesn’t she look a lot like Cynthia? She will be competing in the Mrs. America 2014 Pageant in Tucson, Arizona on August 29. 

We have received several very nice commendations, along with our friends at Suburban and Metro Press on the west end of Ottawa County, for Free Community Newspaper Month. In addition to resolutions from Port Clinton City Council and the Ottawa County Commissioners, we received notification of resolutions from Ohio Legislature, compliments of State Senator Randy Gardner, and also from Ohio Governor John Kasich and Lt. Governor Mary Taylor. For over 31 years (and a lot longer for Suburban Press) The Beacon has served an important function providing timely local information to our readers, with the emphasis on positive local news. 


Port Clinton’s 1:20 Club

Congratulations to Fritz Below who started a new Facebook page on Monday called Port Clinton’s 1:20 Club. The purpose of the new Facebook page is to encourage folks who love Port Clinton to choose, at least once a month, to spend at least $20 inside the City limits that they had planned to spend elsewhere. By Tuesday morning he already had 583 members. AND…unlike other Port Clinton Facebook pages, negative comments are not allowed, or at least discouraged! Check it out!!!

Remember the rumors floating out there a couple of years ago about Eric Clapton buying a place in Lakeside? Now we have two more celebs supposedly buying their “getaway retreat” nearby. Rumor now has it that famous actor Robert DeNiro recently purchased a place on the Marblehead Peninsula. Also, the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, John Boehner (of Cincinnati) just purchased a place on Catawba. Also, in case you need reminding, John Schaffner, the famous sailor, golfer, rock star and newspaper mogul, has lived here since 1962! And you might ask… “What is his name doing in the same sentence as Eric Clapton, Robert DeNiro and John Boehner!?”


50th anniversary of the Ottawa County Fair

The 50th anniversary of the Ottawa County Fair opens this Monday at the Fairgrounds on SR 163 between Port Clinton and Oak Harbor. This local slice of Americana runs from July 14 through the 20. There will be lots of entertainment every day of the fair. Noting that this is the 50th, my mind runs crazy from my days on WRWR when the fair was still very young. They had a “Youth Press Corps” and I was honored to work with Amy Minnich and Libby Kilmer who ran all over the place getting judging results and the like. Ahhhh…those were the days. 

In spite of the incredibly busy weekend, I managed to stop for an hour or two at the new Clinton House located in the former Beacon offices at 106-108 E. Perry Street in downtown Port Clinton. It doesn’t look like our old office, but it is beautiful. Congratulations to Jon and Carolyn Rodenhauser. They did much of the work themselves on the transformation. Stop in and see for yourself!

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