Oct 31, 2013

Trio will perform at Coffee Pot

GREENVILLE – Darke County Center for the Arts will present violinist Doug Hamilton with his trio WingWalker at The Coffee Pot in downtown Greenville on Nov. 14. This is the third of DCCA's Coffeehouse Series presentations; the show begins at 7 p.m.

According to DCCA Artistic Director Keith Rawlins, the eclectic fiddler has been called a musical chameleon because of his ability to feel at home in most genres. “Doug is classically trained, but enjoys improvisation and excels at playing folk, blues, and jazz,” Rawlins stated. “The newly formed trio is a long-time dream for Doug; he is really excited about working with guitarist Michael Kalter and bass player Noah Cope, excellent musicians who can play anything, and pretty much will do just that at the Coffeehouse concert,” Rawlins said.

DCCA's Coffeehouse Series provides high quality artists performing in casual social settings where food and drink are available for purchase. Easy interaction between musicians and audience adds to the intimate atmosphere of DCCA's Coffeehouse Series, and has become a trademark component of the shows. DCCA's Coffeehouse concerts are sponsored by Julie and Tom Graber, Eileen and Steve Litchfield, and Rodney Oda. Additionally, the Ohio Arts Council helped fund this program with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. DCCA also receives operating support from the Harry D. and Esther Stephens Memorial as well as funding from the Ketrow Foundation, Lydia E. Schaurer Memorial Trust Fund.

Tickets for the concert by Doug Hamilton's WingWalker Trio at The Coffee Pot are $10, and may be reserved by contacting DCCA online at www.CenterForArts.net or by calling 547-0908. If any remain by showtime, tickets will also be sold at the door.

Movie and jewelry class

GREENVILLE – The Greenville Public Library is offering a free beginner’s jewelry-making class on Nov. 5, 10 a.m. to noon in the upstairs Meeting Room. It’s called “A Fresh Look at Fabric” taught by Briana Makombe. All you need to bring is a plain t-shirt without side seams and a sharp pair of scissors. Class is limited to ten people so call the library soon at 548-3915.

The free movie for November is the 2013 Star Trek Into Darkness. There will be two shows - Nov. 8, 2 p.m. and Nov. 9, 1 p.m. With two showings they hope more people will be able to attend. Take the elevator to the third floor meeting room and bring your snacks.

Greenville BPW hosts guest night

GREENVILLE – The Guest Night Committee of the Greenville Business & Professional Women’s (BPW) Club hosted the Oct. 10 meeting at the Brethren Retirement Community’s Brick Room.

Diane Delaplane and her committee members Bev Delk, Phyllis Miller, Andria Haworth and Kaye Moore planned an informative meeting with a focus on breast cancer to recognize October being Breast Cancer Awareness month. Kathy McDonald, RSN, RN, CBHN from Reid Hospital along with Claudia Anderson, RN, BSN, Physician Relation’s Manager were present. McDonald who is a breast navigator spoke on breast cancer awareness and the BRCA test. This is a breast cancer (BRCA) gene test that is a blood test to check for specific changes (mutations) in genes that help control normal cell growth. Finding changes in these genes, called BRCA1 and BRCA2, can help determine your chance of developing breast cancer and ovarian cancer. Costs for these tests have recently been reduced in price.

Pamela Spitler from Pamela’s Intimate Apparel located in downtown Greenville spoke on what she has available in her store for women who have gone through breast cancer. Bra gadgets that are available in Pamela’s store were on display. Marilyn Emmons from The Cancer Association of Darke County had a display table exhibiting the services they offer. Reid Hospital provided a table manned by Claudia Anderson with information on services offered by the hospital. Reid Gift shop also provided a gift basket that was given away that evening.

The Greenville BPW Club’s mission is to achieve equity for all women in the workplace through advocacy, education, and information. The Club holds fund raisers throughout the year to raise money to grant scholarships to the young women of Darke County. The Club meets the second Thursday of every month for a dinner meeting. Those interested in learning more about the club can contact Membership Chair Gail Snyder at 423-4854.

Pictured are Pamela Spitler from Pamela’s Intimate Apparel, BPW Members: Marilyn Emmons, Diane Delaplane, Reid Hospital Physician Relations Manager Claudia Anderson and BPW members, Andria Haworth, Phyllis Miller and Kaye Moore.

Stoddard Avenue Pumpkin Glow

DAYTON – Many years ago, Judy Chaffin, Dayton, envisioned ghoulishly glowing pumpkin lighting the perfect darkness of the McKinley Park located on Forest Avenue by the Dayton Art Institute. “When I moved onto Stoddard Ave., I thought, ‘Boy, if we put some over on the hill, how neat would that look?’” Judy reminisced. “I then asked my brother and his wife if they would help me and I went out and bought thirty-six pumpkins and, back then, I thought that was huge! So, we put them over there and people stopped by and seemed to really like them and that was really nice.”

The hill behind the Greek Orthodox Church seemed perfect. The idea seemed to grow all on its own. Judy shared how the pumpkin patch grew with each subsequent year that passed.

“The next year, we decided to go for a little more. We tried to increase it by twenty-five or so…we did seventy-five, then one hundred, then one hundred and twenty-five…it just kept going up and up and up.” With a wave, Judy said, “At some point, it just jumped up to three hundred, then four hundred, then five hundred and this year it has grown to over 850 pumpkins.

In the beginning, Judy would trek up towards Springfield each night after work to go through a local pumpkin farm, loading up her little Honda Civic with all that it would carry. After a few years, her brother helped her by loading up his van with the orange gourd-like squash. Eventually, she was referred to another Springfield area farmer who not only negotiated a fair price for the prestigious pumpkins, but more importantly…he delivered.

Neighbors and friends have joined into the mix, offering their services from gutting and cleaning to carving, placing and lighting the finished pumpkins. It became a neighborhood affair.

With every manner of carving displayed, the Pumpkin Glow has definitely grown, taking in the hearts and imaginations of people from far away cities who have heard about the extraordinary exhibit by word of mouth. The sheer logistics is staggering when one realizes how few people are involved in the actual process of cleaning and carving the pumpkins.

All 850 pumpkins are delivered to her home where they are washed. The following day is cutting day and all 850 get their tops cut off, a number is put on the top part of the pumpkin to correspond with the bottom portion. All pumpkins are gutted in one day. The two days before Halloween, Judy welcomes volunteers to come into her home and carve.

Every volunteer is welcomed with tools, pattern and a pumpkin. The atmosphere of all the workers was fun and enjoyable. This year Ladybug Garden Club members Irma Heiser and Charlene Thornhill helped Judy out with her dream.

The pumpkins are placed on the hill and about 4:30 or 5 p.m., they begin lighting them and they’ll stay lit well past midnight. They stay up for two days then are removed off the hill.

The Stoddard Avenue Pumpkin Glow is an annual event that runs Oct. 30 and 31.

Shown are Ladybug Garden Club member Irma Heiser, Judy Chaffin of Stoddard Avenue Pumpkin Glow, and Charlene Thornhill.

Red Cross catches families practicing

DARKE COUNTY – You wake up to the sound of your smoke detector blaring, the air is heavy with smoke, you realize in a split second that your house is on fire and you must escape. The harsh reality is the risk of home fire is one of the greatest risks your family faces. Will your children know what to do, how to escape, where to go? To help Darke County families answer the question, the American Red Cross issued a challenge to families across the county, to hold a fire drill with their family on Oct. 22 teaching families the importance of what to do if their house caught on fire.

Local volunteers and staff canvassed Darke County taking photos, “catching” families practicing their drills and awarding prizes generously donated by area businesses Versailles, Arcanum & ACE Hardware, Troutwine Auto Sales, Tony Roberts Insurance and Hot Head Burrito. Additionally, families shared their photos on the Darke County American Red Cross Facebook page for even more prizes!

"Practice your Fire Drill at least twice a year,” said Lynne Gump, Executive Director, “This is one of the easiest ways to keep your family safe, our hope is that next year, every family in Darke County participates, it’s that important.” Visit www.redcross.org/OH/greenville for more tips and ways you can get involved with keeping your family prepared.

This little girl fled from her house with doll in hand as her family practiced their fire drill.

State of the Heart observes National Hospice Month

GREENVILLE – State of the Heart Hospice, a nonprofit agency which has served area communities for 32 years, joins the nation’s 5,300 other hospices in observing National Hospice Month in November. The past year for State of the Heart Hospice has been an important one for the agency as more patients than ever before were cared for by the agency, and a new State of the Heart Hospice Care Center opened on the fourth floor of Wayne HealthCare in Greenville, providing an inpatient care center for the first time in the agency’s history. The care center has five private rooms and is the only one of its kind in the area.

“Our growth in the number of patients we serve daily is a strong indication that more patients and families are receiving the quality care we have been known for since 1981,” stated Ted Bauer, Executive Director for State of the Heart. The new care center also completes the options of care for our patients who are provided services in their homes, in nursing homes, and assisted living facilities.

Last year, State of the Heart cared for 738 patients. The agency cares for patients and families in eastern Indiana and western Ohio and has offices in Greenville, Coldwater and Portland.

Bauer explained that hospice care is considered the model for quality, compassionate care for people facing a life-limiting illness. State of the Heart provides expert medical care, pain management and emotional and spiritual support expressly tailored to the patient’s needs and wishes. Support is provided to the patient’s loved ones as well.

In 2012, over 1.65 million patients received care from the nation’s hospices, according to the National Hospice & Palliative Care Organization. Approximately 45 percent of all deaths in the U.S. were under the care of a hospice program.

“There is a common misconception that hospice care is giving up,” Bauer said. “Nothing could be farther from the truth. Hospice provides high quality medical care and services from an interdisciplinary team of professionals and trained volunteers that maximizes quality of life and makes the wishes of the patient a priority.”

An important service provided by State of the Heart, he explained, “is the bereavement support provided each family.” Grief support is available for adults and children at no cost. State of the Heart has become known as the region’s primary resource in grief support. State of the Heart Hospice provides grief support to anyone in the community who needs help, regardless of association with hospice care, Bauer said. In addition, each summer the agency conducts Camp BEARable for grieving children. This camp will be held July 11-13 next year and is free to any child who needs help dealing with grief.

State of the Heart also provides music therapy and has two board certified music therapists on staff in addition to a music therapy intern. The agency is one of only three out of about 100 in Ohio to offer a music therapy internship. In Indiana, where there are approximately 100 hospices, there are no hospices with a music therapy intern program. Recently, State of the Heart added pet therapy for patients and families as an extension of the volunteer services provided. Now, patients and families who wish can have a visit from one of two pet dogs that are accompanied by their owners who are volunteers.

“As a nonprofit agency, State of the Heart is always looking at ways to expand and enhance the services and care we provide our patients and families,” Bauer said. “We feel it is our responsibility to give back to the community for all of the support given our agency over the years. “We look forward to continuing to serve our patients and families with the best hospice care possible,” Bauer said.

For more information about any of the services provided by State of the Heart, visit the agency web site at www.stateoftheheartcare.org.

Oct 30, 2013

Clark pleads guilty to Felonious Assault

GREENVILLE – Kody Clark of Greenville pleaded guilty Oct. 29 to one count of Felonious Assault, a 2nd Degree Felony. Darke County Common Pleas Judge Jonathan Hein accepted the plea and scheduled sentencing for Dec. 13 following a pre-sentencing report.

Asst. Prosecutor Deborah Quigley told Hein the state will dismiss the gun specification requiring a mandatory three year prison term. In return Clark agreed to plead guilty to Felonious Assault and forfeit his Winchester 30-30 caliber rifle to the Darke County Sheriff’s Office.

A Felony 2 Felonious Assault carries a maximum eight years in prison with a $15,000 fine. A mandatory term is not considered necessary by law, although some prison time is presumed necessary.

Clark shot his brother, Ky Clark of Mooresville, Ind., in the leg during a “heated” argument in May. The brother was Careflighted to Miami Hospital where he was treated and released the next day.

“Were there any surprises (in what has been discussed)?” Hein asked Clark. “No.” Following some additional one-word answers, Hein asked Clark if he had been up all night… Clark responded he didn’t get any sleep.

Hein asked Clark if he understood a prison sentence would require mandatory post release control for up to three years.

Clark then started responding with “Yes, your Honor.”

Hein asked additional questions, then “I know you are tired but I wanted to make sure you are awake and understanding this. Did you understand the form (plea agreement) before you signed it?”

“Yes, your Honor.”

“We conclude you understand the charge, the facts of the charge and the penalties of the charge,” Hein said, after which he asked Clark’s attorney David Rohrer, and Quigley if they had any additional comments. Both said no.

Hein then pronounced Clark guilty of Felonious Assault.

Afterward Quigley said the state would wait until the pre-sentence investigation is complete before making sentencing recommendations.

Great turnout for annual School Fair

NEW MADISON – The 80th annual Tri-Village School Fair celebrating 40 Years of Patriot Pride was a tremendous success. On Oct. 4 and 5, the community came out in full force to take part in all of the festivities from the pumpkin decorating contest to the School Fair King and Queen crowning ceremony. This year’s program honored the 40th anniversary of the consolidation of the New Madison, Hollansburg, and Palestine school districts into what is now known as Tri-Village.

Almost 40 current and former staff members were welcomed back to the school to enjoy the weekend. They were recognized at the crowning ceremony Friday night and in the parade on Saturday. William Holmes and Warren Combs were honored as the co-grand marshals for this year as two of the original administrators of the consolidated district. Many stories, pictures, and warm memories were shared over the course of the weekend, including a slideshow that chronicled all forty years of yearbook pictures done by students in the web design/video editing class taught by Mrs. Kim Puckett.

Friday was a dazzling success with an exceptional turnout for the crowning ceremony. The gym looked fantastic with decorations done by the Jr./Sr. High Student Councils advised by Mrs. Heather Stump. The invocation was delivered by Eric Laux, local business owner and active community member, and the night was complete with traditional performances from the band and choir led by new directors Emily Venneman and Geneva Price. The school was proud to crown Riley Hollinger and Jordan Walker as their School Fair Queen and King.

Saturday’s festivities were a hit with excellent participation in the Pinewood Derby, the ever popular Mini Tractor Pull, the 5th Annual School Fair Auction done by Brian Rismiller of Rismiller Auctioneer Services, and the first ever Neon Patriot 5K put on by the National Honor Society, Freshman Class, and Key Club. Although cut short by rain, the 5K was a community favorite and a profitable fundraiser for the groups. The kiddie games on the front lawn were sponsored by the New Madison Kiwanis which included an egg toss, sack races, and a nickel hunt, among others. The parade didn’t disappoint with several groups displaying creative floats, but ultimately the Cub Scout Pack 149 came out on top in the float contest.

When all was said and done, the school fair committee was more than pleased with the success of this year’s School Fair and wanted to thank all who were involved in any way. With so many new faces on staff at Tri-Village, the support that was received from all was a true testament to the unwavering Patriot Pride and strength of the entire community.

Change your clocks, change your batteries

GREENVILLE – As Daylight Saving Time comes to an end on November 3, the City of Greenville Fire Department wants to remind you to change the batteries in each of your smoke detectors when you change the time on your clocks. Properly operating smoke alarms are the single most important tool in determining whether or not your family will have time to escape a house fire. According to the National Fire Protection Agency “nearly 900 lives could be saved each year if all homes had working smoke alarms.”

Time is the key factor when dealing with fire. Most Americans believe they have 10 minutes or less before a fire turns deadly; in truth, the time frame is usually much less – often as little as two minutes. While every fire has its own set of circumstances, the facts of fire behavior remain the same, and the facts are that a fire will double in size with each passing minute. Since every second counts when trying to escape during a fire, it stands to reason that the most important factor in getting out unharmed is some type of early warning.

In 2005-2009, smoke alarms were present in almost three quarters (72%) of reported home fires and sounded in half (51%) of the home fires. One quarter (24%) of deaths were caused by fires in properties which smoke alarms were present but failed to operate. When smoke alarms should have operated but did not, it usually was because of missing or dead batteries in the alarms. With Daylight Savings Time ending on Nov. 3, take time to replace your smoke alarm batteries, check operation of the alarms, and practice your Home Escape Plan with everyone in the residence.

If you live in the City of Greenville and do not currently have a working smoke alarm in your home or yours is more than 10 years old, contact the fire department at 548-3040 during normal business hours (Monday–Friday, 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.) to receive one free of charge. If you need help with installation, members of the City of Greenville Fire Department will set up a time to come to your home and install your new smoke detector in the optimum location.

Take advantage of the Darke County Solid Waste Management’s 9-volt Battery Exchange Program for your smoke detector batteries. To qualify for the battery exchange, you must live within Darke County. Take your batteries to the City of Greenville Fire Department and exchange them for new ones (up to a maximum of 5 batteries per household) until Nov. 10.

Thanksgiving Meal planned in Pitsburg

PITSBURG – All are invited for a Home Cooked Meal at Franklin- Monroe School Conference Room/Old Cafeteria, 8591 Oakes Road, Pitsburg, on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 28. The meal will be served from noon to 1:30 p.m.

Plans are to serve 100 meals, and reservations must be requested at 621-7331. Reservations need to be called by Nov. 26.

This dinner provides a meal to those who are unable to prepare a meal, needy families, or those families that do not have relatives with whom to share Thanksgiving dinner. The meal menu is: Turkey or Ham, Sweet Potatoes, Green Beans, Mashed Potatoes, Gravy, Dinner Roll, Fruit Salad, Pie, and Drinks.

This free dinner is made possible by generous donations from many individuals, service organizations, churches and businesses. If your organization, family or church small group would like to assist with donations or assist in serving the meal, please call Dean’a Cook at 621-7331.

Monetary donation can be sent to: Tipp City UMC, 8 West Main St., Tipp City, Ohio 45371, Memo: Darke Co. Thanksgiving Dinner.

This is an opportunity to donate to a local charity and build community in our area.

They would like to thank all who have come together to make this first year event happen. The hope is to provide additional meals in the coming years to include shut-ins.

A Holiday of Hope

GREENVILLE – The Cancer Association of Darke County will be taking orders for poinsettias for the upcoming holiday season. The poinsettias are from Star Greenhouses, Inc. and are always beautiful and very healthy plants. The proceeds will be used to help cancer patients living in Darke County. Don’t miss this opportunity to have beautiful Christmas flowers in your home, church or business and also help the community to battle cancer.

There are two different sizes available and 5 different colors: 6 ½ inch pots are available for $11 in Jingle Bells, Red and also White. Ten inch pots are available for $20 in Red, White, Burgundy and Marble. You may order your poinsettia by calling the Cancer Association at 548-9960 or mailing your check and detailed order with your address and phone number to Cancer Association of Darke County, PO Box 781, Greenville, Ohio 45331. The order deadline is Nov. 29.

Poinsettias may be picked up on Dec. 7, 11 a.m.–2 p.m. at VFW Greenville on Ohio St. Delivery is available if necessary. Please let the office know if you need delivery.

The Cancer Association is local and independent and not affiliated with the American Cancer Society. It is a 501c3 non-profit organization that serves Darke County. If you would like to donate or have any questions, contact Christine Lynn, Executive Director at 548-9960.

Republicans have successful pig roast

GREENVILLE – Approximately 350 attended the Annual Darke County Republican Pig Roast on October 20. It was held in the Youth Building on the Darke County Fairgrounds. The Republican Party thanks those who shared a beautiful Sunday afternoon with them.

They would like to thank all the people that helped set up and tear down and/or worked the day of this event.

The Republican elected officials of Darke County and the City of Greenville served the food and paid for the pig. Also, thank you to Commissioner Diane Delaplane and Sheriff Toby for taking the donations.

JoEllen Melling did a wonderful rendition of the Star Spangle Banner after Mayor Mike Bowers led the group in the Pledge of allegiance. A beautiful video and music was played while the Veterans and the ROTC marched in. And a special thank you to Evelyn Sharp for doing the silent auction.

Additionally, a huge thank you to, Eikenberry’s, Minute Man Press, Lighthouse Christian Center, Hannah’s Garden Center, the Moose Lodge, Wendy’s, McDonalds, Kesco Products, and Eric Fee of Braud and Pope Funeral home. All of these people/businesses contributed products or services and without which this year’s Pig Roast could not have been such a huge success.

A HUGE thank you to Greg Peck of Security Sound for another wonderful job. Greg does this for them every year and the Republican Party does appreciate him very much.

Those in attendance to speak were Jim Zehringer Director of Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Justice Sharon Kennedy Ohio Supreme Court, President of Ohio Senate Senator Keith Faber, Senator Bill Beagle, State Representatives Jim Buchy and Richard Adams, Megan Savercool from Senator Rob Portman’s office.

Former Darke County Republican Chair Cindy Pike thanked everyone for their support for the past eight years and then introduced the new Darke County Republican Chair Mike Rieman.

For the 10th year they have had the honor of choosing the Darke County Republican of the Year, and Barb Fee had the pleasure of announcing “Mike Rhoades” as 2013 Darke County Republican of the year. Mike was chosen for his outstanding long work in Darke County for the Republican Party. Those awarding Rhoades were Greenville Mayor Mike Bowers, Representatives Jim Buchy and Richard Adams, Senator Keith Faber and Bill Beagle, Megan Savercool of Senator Rob Portman’s office, Matt Ferguson for Speaker of the House John Boehner, and Commissioners Mike Stegall and Diane Delaplane.

Thank you to Jo Ellen Melling and Jenny Peck for singing God Bless the USA at the conclusion of the event.

They are looking forward to seeing all of you back next year, so mark your calendar for Oct. 19, 2014.


Oct 29, 2013

Thank you DAR volunteers

GREENVILLE - V-Vibrant, O- Outgoing, L-Loyal, U- Unstoppable, N- Nutty, T- Terrific, E- Energetic, E- Enthusiastic, R- Reliable, S- Service, this is what the Darke County Parks experienced the last weekend in September during our Prairie Days Festival from our VOLUNTEERS! With nearly 300 volunteers assisting with various tasks all of the stations/activities were able to run smoothly which allowed the public to enjoy numerous pioneer activities such as pottery, candle dipping, visiting the Log House, apple cider, making rag dolls and lots more!

It’s amazing to see how many citizens, of all ages, will come together and assist the Park District to make our festival possible. This year we gained several new volunteers! Several citizens that had a free weekend or family members and friends of current park volunteers came out and helped because they heard how enjoyable and rewarding it was to volunteer for Prairie Days. A Huge thanks goes out to the following volunteers for managing certain areas during the festival: Carolyn Hollinger- General Store, Ray Bradbury-Mad Anthony’s Tavern, Margaret Hensel- Gift Shop/Wandering Musician, Dee & Tom Carrington- Candle Dipping, Phill Hollinger- Pioneer Toys, Ron Gross, Bill Henry & Collin Jennings -Blacksmith Shop. Along with these volunteers, some were involved all weekend (both Sat. and Sun.) and others were able to help with a station or two. Everyone who came out to volunteer did a marvelous job and we couldn’t have done it without you. Again we can’t say THANK YOU enough, but the Park District Commissioner’s and staff greatly appreciates the time you were willing to donate to the District!

Also, the volunteers of the Park District were once again surprised when they arrived to the Volunteer Luncheon during our Prairie Days Festival for their “picnic style lunch”! A special thanks goes to Parks Volunteer, Mindy Dickey, for assisting with picking up food donations and managing the food line while volunteers stopped in for lunch. A Huge thanks goes out to the following businesses for making this possible; John’s IGA, Big Lots, Buehler’s Meat Processing, Hot Head Burrito, The Bistro off Broadway, Arby’s Restaurant, Montage CafĂ©, and Brenda’s Beanery. All of your donations were greatly appreciated and enjoyed by a large number of volunteers who assisted during the festival weekend. We truly hope we can continue the partnerships that we have created. Thank you so much for all of your generosity.

DAR Members assisted with Children’s crafts throughout the festival weekend.

Marilou Coverstone and Barbie Hansbarger assist the children in making Tussy Mussies.

VAHS Museum now open

VERSAILLES - What are you doing on Sunday afternoon? The Versailles Area Historical Society’s Museum is open each Sunday afternoon from 1 p.m. till 4 p.m. for your convenience. Our autumn displays are up and ready for your enjoyment. You’ll want to be sure to visit the North Star Room as well as our Willowdell and Webster displays.

Mark your calendars as plans are underway for a special Veteran’s Tribute on Nov. 10 at 2 p.m. a program you won’t want to miss. Also are “Sunday Afternoon’s at the Museum” speaker series will return in January for our third season. This is a great way to spend an afternoon.

Also the museum is happy to arrange special tours for groups at other times during the week by calling the museum at 526-4222 and leave a detailed message. We are also now taking school groups especially 3rd grade and up. Our tours can be prepared to match the Ohio Standards for Social Studies with a local spin on our history to meet any teacher’s needs.

Whether you’re a student or haven’t seen the inside of a classroom in many a year the museum has so much to offer and so many wonderful stories to tell.

With advanced planning special demonstrations and interpreters can be arranged to enhance your museum experience. From learning about the first families to settle the community, to the towns devastating fire, to the stories of soldiers who served our country, to Annie Oakley, one of our most famous residents, we can share the tales you won’t forget.

So come and spend the afternoon with us or perhaps make plans to bring a group to enjoy the treasures of our past as well as the stories of our communities at the museum in Versailles.

The museum is located at the corner of West Street and St. Rt. 121. We are handicapped accessible.

MVHS honored for blood drive excellence

UNION CITY - Community Blood Center (CBC) presented Mississinawa Valley High School leaders with a check for $1,000 at the Oct. 14 school board meeting, representing the award MVHS earned in the inaugural CBC High School Leadership Grant Program for Blood Drive Excellence.

CBC is awarding $1,000 grants in five categories for the 2012-13 academic year. There are grants for both “Highest” and “Runner Up” in the Highest Percentage of Enrollment category because CBC considers this both an important measurement of blood drive participation and a fair method of judging schools of all sizes.

MVHS received the grant for Runner Up in Highest Percentage of Enrollment. “Mississinawa Valley is one of the smallest schools hosting blood drives and has a small number of eligible donors,” said CBC Donor Relations Manager Tracy Morgan, “But their enthusiastic support for their four blood drives in 2012-13 resulted in participation by 132% of enrollment.” MVHS was second only to Emmanuel Christian Academy in Springfield, which had 137% participation.

“We at Mississinawa Valley High School are honored to have received this generous grant from CBC,” said MVHS Principal Jeffrey Winchester. “It is great that CBC recognizes what we see every day at Mississinawa Valley; that our students and community see the value in giving. We appreciate that CBC honors that with the CBC High School Leadership Grant.”

“I think the board and Principal Winchester as well as myself are very pleased to see that,” said Mississinawa Valley Schools Superintendent James Atchley. “By pushing the blood drive, it’s neat to see that not only do our students participate, but they do so to that degree.”

Left to right: MVHS Principal Jeffrey Winchester, CBC Darke County Account Representative Dana Puterbaugh, Mississinawa Valley Schools Superintendent James Atchley.

MVCTC Education Foundation 5K continues helping students

CLAYTON – The Miami Valley Career Technology Center (MVCTC) Education Foundation held the 6th Annual “Pi Miler” 5K run/walk on Sept. 28. Over 120 walkers/runners participated in the 3.14 mile course on the MVCTC campus. Thanks to the participants and many sponsors of the event, over $6,000 was raised for the Education Foundation.

The MVCTC Education Foundation was formed in 1991 by the MVCTC staff and various community leaders who wanted to provide targeted assistance to students needing financial help to complete their education. They believed that MVCTC would be the conduit that would connect skilled, well trained, entry-level workers with jobs. The Foundation provides assistance according to need. First, the Foundation provides financial support to both high school and adult students for career-specific materials and tools. Second, the Foundation dispenses “emergency needs” funds for situations that demand immediate attention and have exhausted all other resources. Third, the Foundation gives college scholarships annually to help students who want to go on to post-secondary education.

The Mission of the MVCTC Education Foundation “is to assist students whose financial or personal needs would prevent them from achieving an education and reaching their full potential. The belief of the Foundation is that as our students succeed, we all succeed as individuals and as a community.”

Sponsors of the 2013 MVCTC Education Foundation include the following: Gold Level – $500 donation: Dayton Cincinnati Technology, The Ohlmann Group, ServiceMaster, Woodyard Electric, Inc. Silver Level – $250 donation: App Architecture, Baird Public Investment Advisors, D& M Excavating, Eye Center of Richmond, Henny Penny, Hupman’s Lawn Care, Origami Owl, Kim Marburger, Independent Designer. Bronze Level – $100 donation: A to Z Asphalt Contractors, Boord-Henne Insurance, Drs Louis & Dominic Vitangeli, DDS, Kindred Funeral Home, New Creation Counseling Center, Northmont Area Chamber of Commerce, Sollmann Electric, Co. and Phelan Insurance Agency, Inc.

Results from the 6th Annual “Pi Miler” 5K run/walk can be found at www.premierraces.com/ViewResults.asp?resultsID=1793.

MVCTC Diesel and Power Technologies Program

CLAYTON – The Miami Valley Career Technology Center (MVCTC) Diesel and Power Technologies program provides solid fundamentals of industry knowledge, teaching students’ engines, fuel systems, fabrication, electronics, air conditioning, hydraulics, and power trains. This program also has a partnership with Miami Industrial Trucks to use their on-line training program and a lift truck for instruction. Students can earn certifications in A/C recovery/recycle, SP2 safety, and CAT lift truck.

Students of the Diesel and Power Technologies program may participate in FFA contests such as Agricultural and Industrial Diagnostics, Outdoor Power and Equipment, and Ag Mechanics. MVCTC students have won eight of the last nine district contests and placed in the top ten in all contests the past three years. The state Ag/Industrial Diagnostics team members can earn up to $10,000 scholarships to attend the University of Northwestern Ohio (UNOH). Last year the team placed 3rd in the state and team members earned $7,000 each.

Diesel and Power Technologies students are able to participate in the MVCTC Apprenticeship program if they maintain good grades and great attendance. This school year nine Diesel and Power Tech students are apprenticing at many local businesses such as Rush Enterprise, Journey, 503 Diesel, Twin Valley Equipment, Koenigs, and World Wide Equipment.

Graduates have gone on to work at dealerships of over-the-road trucks, heavy equipment, agriculture dealerships, and rental fleets. Many students pursue their two-year associate's degree while working at a place of employment. Yet another option upon graduation is pursuing a four-year degree. The possibilities are endless.

Based on the 2011 follow-up data (the most recent reported by the state), 100% of MVCTC Diesel and Power Technologies students were employed, in the military, or enrolled in college or advanced training after leaving MVCTC. This program also reported 100% program completion and 100% academic attainment in math, reading, and science.

The diesel technician industry is growing rapidly with the retirement of technicians and the expansion of diesel engines in America. This trend continues and all major manufacturers in this country have announced new diesel engines in 1/2 ton pickups and/or cars. Ag, Industrial and over the road run all diesel engines.

Diesel and Power Technologies junior Brett Goubeaux of Arcanum

Oct 28, 2013

Lear gets 60 days, community control

GREENVILLE – Joseph Lear received 60 days jail time, plus 60 months community control, for Gross Sexual Imposition, a Felony 4 offense.

He was given credit for four days, leaving 56 to be served. Darke County Common Pleas Judge Jon Hein advised Lear to use his time well in jail. He told Lear he had a choice; he could choose to do better or follow the path of those he saw around him going downhill.

“Put out the effort,” Hein said. “You’ll be just fine.”

Lear, who lives in Miami County, will serve his time in Darke County and also will owe 80 hours of court ordered community service.

He will be required to maintain a job but will be on work release, take sex offender education, provide a DNA sample, submit to drug tests and pay court costs at approximately $25 a month for a year. He will be responsible for restitution through the end of the year and, by law, must register as a Tier 1 sex offender for 15 years.

Lear was originally charged with Sexual Conduct with a Minor, a Felony 3 offense. However at the time of the pending trial in August the victim couldn’t be found to testify. Lear was willing to plead down to the Felony 4. The victim and her family were later found in Virginia and, according to Darke County Prosecutor Kelly Ormsby, were fine with the plea agreement.

“The victim was 14. He was 26. The state requests the court strongly consider 90 days in jail, a $500 fine, restitution, court costs and community service,” Ormsby said.

Lear’s attorney, David Rohr, said he wouldn’t try to downplay Lear’s behavior, but didn’t see him as a repeat offender.

“Joe never once made an excuse, never once blamed the victim,” Rohr added. “I don’t think this court will see him again.”

Lear stood, saying “I do apologize. I try to live with this day after day.” Breaking into tears he said he wanted to tell the family how sorry he was.

Lear’s mother, who had been sitting quietly in the back of the courtroom, asked if a girl who says she is 18 shouldn’t take some responsibility.

Hein said that was a fair question but not one he could answer since he isn’t the one filing charges. Rohr said he didn’t disagree with the mother but acknowledged Lear knew at some point she was 14. Ormsby said, “she said she was 15, he said he thought she was 16,” adding no one had ever said anything about her being 18.

Prior to passing sentence, Hein said this was a serious crime… “How do we deal with this, Mr. Lear?”

He added some dig a deeper hole for themselves while some take this as a life lesson.

“In the long run, this could make you a better person.”

2013 DC Relay For Life summary

DARKE COUNTY - The 2013 Darke County Relay For Life was a huge success raising over $81,000. The money was generated by the combined efforts of 22 teams. All of the teams were from Darke County and comprised of dedicated hard working individuals who hope in a cure for cancer and believe in value of raising the necessary funds to cover the expenses of educating the public, providing resources to those in need, and assisting in the fight against cancer.

Some of the programs that the Darke County Relay for Life fund include support programs, transportation assistance which helps with travel expenses, the Hope Lodge®, where cancer patients and their caregivers can stay free of charge while away from home for treatment, Wig Salon program, and the Look Good…Feel Better® program which can provide a wig and other cosmetic tips for dealing with the affects of treatment. All these programs are available and support the Darke County cancer survivors.

The following teams also received individual recognition; Banking on a Cure received the “Team Site Judging” award and Silver Level recognition, Because We Care obtained the Jade Level recognition, Darke County Assoc., for Realtors received the “Golden Pillow Case Award” and Rising Star Level recognition, Joan’s Kids received the “Spirit Stick” and Emerald Level recognition, Jolly Hot Tamales received Rising Star Level recognition, Lutherans for a Cure received Gold Level recognition, Phelan Insurance received Bronze Level recognition, Survivor Inspired received Rising Star Level recognition, Team VCC received “Rookie of the Year” award and Rising Star Level recognition, Tiger Team received the “School Team Award” and Rising Star Level recognition, United for a Cure received Gold Level recognition, Vision of Hope received Silver Level recognition, Versailles Eagles Auxiliary received Silver Level recognition, and Walnut Hill Walkers received Rising Star Level recognition.

Most of these teams have fundraising events throughout the year and concludes with the Relay for Life Event which this year was held at Heritage Park in Versailles. Each year a cancer survivor speaks at the opening ceremony, this year’s speaker was originally to be Kathy Black however her declining health kept from fulfilling that commitment. Instead Cathy Eckstein gave her personal account of the support she received from the American Cancer Society Relay For Life. Cathy believed she was still alive due to the good works, donations and compassion of the Relay for Life volunteers. She also hoped to experience the Relay For Life on a national level one day.

Cathy Eckstein passed away on Aug. 17, after a long battle and Kathy Black passed away on Sept. 16, after succumbing to her cancer. Kathy had served on the Darke County Cancer Board for 7 years and she was a member of the American Cancer Society Look Good Feel Better ® program. Both ladies believed in and supported the good works of the Relay For Life.

Lois Lyons the 2013 Committee Chair will be succeeded by Rose Schlater in 2014. The 2014 theme will be “Life’s a Beach Without Cancer”. Anyone wishing to get involved by forming a fundraising team or volunteering on the 2014 committee can contact Rose Schlater at 526-5151 or email her at schlater48@embarqmail.com.

Submitted by Kathy Magoto

Career Tech September Students

GREENVILLE - Greenville Career Tech Center, in order to honor outstanding accomplishments and leadership in Career Tech Education, is proud to announce the recognition of the September 2013 students of the month. Dylan Blinn, senior member of Supply Chain Management, and Jake Snyder, senior member of IMTV, received a plaque to honor their selection, a gift certificate from Maid-Rite Sandwich Shoppe, and a preferred parking spot for a month by the Career Tech Center.

Dylan Blinn, senior representative of Supply Chain Management taught by Dara Buchy has competed for Region 3 BPA Officer, was chosen to participate in a Marketing and Management Conference by the Darke County Visitors Bureau, and was selected to edit the current Darke County Visitor’s Bureau Brochure.

Jake Snyder, senior representative of IMTV taught by Lori Hover, has helped to facilitate the transition of Channel 5 to the Greenville Career Tech Center, and worked above and beyond the school day to make sure deadlines are met and projects are filmed to show on Channel 5.

Congratulations to Dylan and Jake for being recognized as the September 2013 Students of the Month. Special Thanks to Maid-Rite Sandwich Shoppe for providing gift certificates and their continued support of Career Tech Education.

Pictured left to right: Dylan Blinn and Jake Snyder

Transportation for Seniors 60 and older

GREENVILLE – Community Action Partnership of the Greater Dayton Area – Darke Co., would like to inform area seniors, 60 and older, that Medical Transportation Service is available within a 100-mile radius of Greenville Monday through Friday. General transportation is also available to cover trips to grocery stores, banks, restaurants and other locations with two or more riders. Suggested donation for both transportation services is $3. Call Denise Purnhagen, 24 hours in advance to schedule an appointment at 547-9129. If no answer, please leave a message.

Greenville PD earns recognition for Mental Health training

PIQUA - The Greenville Police Department earned recognition for its commitment to mental health and recovery services training at the Tri-County Board of Recovery and Mental Health Service’s Annual Meeting and Art of Recovery Showcase Oct. 16 at Edison Community College.

Each year since 2000, the Tri-County Board has recognized groups and individuals with the Geraldine B. Nelson Award for supportive measures on behalf of another, by promoting the recognition of consumer rights and encouraging positive change in the realm of mental health and addictions issues.

The Greenville Police Department is the first department in the Darke, Miami and Shelby County service area to have 100 percent of its officers complete the Tri-County Board’s Crisis Intervention Team Training (CIT), which exposes law enforcement professionals to the mental health and addiction treatment and recovery services in the area.

Presenting the award was Tri-County Board Chairman Jason Wagner of Versailles. Wagner said, “For 2013, we recognize a group who have collectively and as individuals dedicated a significant portion of their professional lives to a deeper understanding of mental health and addiction, for the purpose of helping them be more effective in serving and protecting the community in which they live and work.”

“The CIT training helps law enforcement recognize and appropriately address issues related to mental health and addiction,” said Mark McDaniel, Executive Director of the Tri-County Board. “Officers are out there on the street and are often the first point of contact with the public. The Greenville Police Department has demonstrated a tremendous commitment to understanding and applying their training in cases where mental health or addiction issues may be a factor.”

In accepting the award on behalf of the department, Greenville Police Chief Dennis Butts said, “We are grateful for any training that helps the department protect and serve the public. The CIT training has been very helpful, and it has helped foster a better sense of familiarity and trust between mental health services and law enforcement.”

McDaniel noted that Butts will be awarded the Ohio CIT Law Enforcement Administrator of the Year Oct. 28 at the statewide CIT conference in Columbus.

Also at the Annual Meeting, McDaniel honored Vickie Martin with the Director’s Award for outstanding service to the mental health and recovery services provider network, and McDaniel was recognized for 15 years of service to the Tri-County Board.

Art of Recovery is an annual showcase of local artists who create art to express their personal journeys through mental health and addiction recovery, or whose lives have been touched as a family member, friend or service provider. More than 30 artists contributed nearly 100 pieces of artwork, poetry and music for the Showcase, which was exhibited Oct. 16 in the Robinson Theater at Edison Community College’s Piqua campus.

Geraldine B. Nelson, for whom the advocacy award is named, was a longtime employee of the Tri-County Board and an ardent advocate for mental health services.

Left to Right Greenville Police Sergeant Scott Drew and Chief Dennis Butts accept the Geraldine B. Nelson Advocacy Award from Tri-County Board of recovery and Mental Health Services Board Chairman Jason Wagner at the Board’s Annual Meeting and Art of Recovery Showcase Oct. 16 at Edison Community College in Piqua.
Vickie Martin accepts the Director’s Award from Mark McDaniel, Executive Director of the Tri-County Board of Recovery and Mental Health Services, at the Annual Meeting and Art of Recovery Showcase Oct. 16 at Edison Community College in Piqua.

DeWine warns of dangerous cosmetic contact lenses

COLUMBUS - Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine along with Prevent Blindness Ohio and the Ohio Optical Dispensers Board are warning consumers about the dangers of over-the-counter sales of decorative contact lenses during this Halloween season. According to the Optical Dispensers Board, the number of consumer complaints filed regarding the illegal sale of cosmetic contact lenses and the number of resulting cease and desist orders issued to violating businesses have shown a steady increase after a period of decline, not only during the Halloween season, but all year long.

In fiscal year 2009, the Optical Dispensers Board issued 13 cease and desist orders based on consumer complaints. In fiscal years 2010, 2011, and 2012 there were 12, 16, and 15, respectively, such orders issued. There have been 15 cease and desist orders issued so far this year.

“As we prepare for Halloween, we want to remind Ohio families that over-the-counter sales of decorative contact lenses are illegal,” Attorney General DeWine said. “Contact lenses are medical devices, and if they are not administered properly, they can cause serious eye infections that can lead to permanent damage, including blindness.”

DeWine strongly encourages Ohioans to report the illegal sales to the Ohio Optical Dispensers Board at (614) 466-9709. As a U.S. senator, DeWine sponsored in 2005 the legislation that requires consumers to obtain a prescription from a licensed professional to purchase contact lenses, including corrective and non-corrective lenses.

“Decorative contacts in various styles and colors have become increasingly trendy in making a fashion statement, especially for teens. And, colored or decorative non-corrective contact lenses have become a popular element of Halloween costumes. While these lenses can add a fun flourish to a costume, they can also result in devastating eye infections, scarring and even blindness,” said Sherry Williams, President and CEO of Prevent Blindness Ohio.

Eye pain, bacterial infections, and corneal ulcers are caused by ill-fitting lenses. One study found that wearing decorative lenses increased the risk for developing keratitis, a potentially blinding infection that causes an ulcer in the eye. This increased risk was more than 16 times more likely than those seen in vision correcting (“regular”) lenses.

“I’ve seen many young patients who were not aware of the dangers of these products and are now living with permanent vision loss,” said Thomas L. Steinemann, MD, Professor of Ophthalmology at Case Western Reserve University/MetroHealth Medical Center and a Prevent Blindness Ohio volunteer. “Parents should be on the alert to protect their children’s vision by assuring that their contact lenses are worn only under the supervision of an eye doctor.”

Oct 27, 2013

Historic Preservation Office recognizes local resident

GREENVILLE – Larry Addis of Greenville was presented the Award of Merit from the Ohio Historic Preservation Office of the Ohio Historical Society on Oct. 22 for his “outstanding contribution to historic preservation in Ohio.” The award acknowledged his dedication in the preservation of Zion Wakefield Lutheran Chapel at 7757 Greenville-Celina Road in Greenville.

This is the first time the state office has given this award to a Darke County resident.

The award was presented to Addis at KT Plum on North Broadway by Greenville Mayor Mike Bowers. In accepting it, Addis noted he wasn’t the only one doing the work.

“We had a facilities group of a dozen men,” he said. “We all shared an interest in it. We worked together to get it done.”

The chapel, which was built in 1863, was purchased and reopened in 1984 by the Bible Fellowship Church. Addis began doing some work on it a year later, but the main effort didn’t start until the early 1990s after a new sanctuary had been built. Over the next 20 years he and his volunteers refurbished it, from the floors to the roof. He was the Facilities Director for the chapel and the other structures of the church from 2009 to 2012, retiring a year ago October.

The new sanctuary was built in 1988; an educational wing in 1992 and a larger sanctuary in 1996. The original chapel is still used for youth services and weddings.

An unsung hero in the process is Betty Broderick.

“They (the Historical Society) asked me to nominate someone from Darke County,” she said. Acknowledging her desire to get the chapel on the National Registry of Historic Places, her first thought was of Addis and his work on the church.

“I nominated him in June. They let me know he won in August and scheduled the presentation for Sept. 28 in Columbus,” she added.

Addis had a conflict and couldn’t be there, so the 80-plus-year-old Broderick went on his behalf.

“Yeah, she rode a horse,” quipped her proud daughter Roberta Ditty. “We offered to take her on a motorcycle. She chose the horse instead.”

Broderick said she’s been trying for three years to get the chapel on the Registry.

“They had me measure every inch of the building, inside and out. I took hundreds of pictures. Then they came out and took hundreds more… it belongs on the Registry,” she said. “Since they have recognized Larry, I’m hoping next year will be the year.”

Broderick added her great grandfather provided funding for the land and building of the church in 1863.

Addis, a two term veteran of the Vietnam war, lives in Greenville with his wife, Shirley. He has a son Larry Jr. and a daughter Sherry Pearson living in Greenville. His other daughter, Jennifer Vogelpohl, lives in Alexandria, near Columbus.

“Two out of three stayed in Greenville,” said the lifelong resident. Addis boasts five grandchildren and one great granddaughter.
Larry Addis, recipient of the Ohio Preservation Office Award of Merit, sits with his family prior to the award’s presentation by Greenville Mayor Mike Bowers.

Pictured are Mayor Michael Bowers and Larry Addis.

Larry Addis holds his award. Next to him is Betty Broderick, the lady who nominated him for the award.

The Early Bird will honor veterans

GREENVILLE – The Early Bird will once again publish its special edition honoring veterans. Recognize the veteran(s) in your family by sending in their picture along with their name, rank, years served and branch of service. Whether your veteran served during peace time or during one of the many wars they should be honored for the service they provided to this country. Past editions of this special tabloid have honored veterans from World War I through the present.

To assist those that have loyally submitted pictures for these editions, The Early Bird has kept pictures from last year’s tabloid on file and will honor those veterans again this year, along with any new veterans that are submitted. If you would prefer your veteran not be recognized this year please, let us know so we can remove their picture from the edition.

The Early Bird is also requesting memories from soldiers that served. Let us know where you served and any special memories you have from your time in service. Did you meet your wife while serving? What was your experience like while serving? What is the one thing about serving in the Armed Forces that has never left your memory?

The deadline for submissions is Nov. 5. Pictures and memories can mailed or dropped off to The Early Bird, Veterans, 5312 Sebring Warner Road, Greenville, Ohio 45331, or emailed to editor@earlybirdpaper.com (please note veterans in the subject line).

The special edition will be inserted in the Nov. 10 edition of The Early Bird.

Keep your child’s Trick or Treat activities safe

GREENVILLE – “Don’t let your child go unsupervised!”

While Greenville City Law Director Camille Baker offered additional information about keeping your child safe while Trick or Treating, the emphasis was on supervision by the parent or other responsible adult…

“Don’t let them go out by themselves,” she repeated.

Stay in your neighborhood, she added. Be cognizant of anyone you don’t know.

“Just having kids go out in groups isn’t good enough,” she said. “Kids can get separated from groups. Make sure a responsible adult is with the kids.”

Parents need to be aware there is no state law keeping sex offenders from handing out candy to kids; the responsibility is with the parent or guardian.

“The only time there might be a restriction would be from the individual’s parole or probation officer,” she said. “Even the court could specify this as part of the sentence… but the restriction would have to be from the court or an appointed officer.”

Baker noted parental concern shouldn’t be just about sex offenders. People can get focused on them but should be aware of all possibilities where their kids are involved.

“Razer blades were a big concern in the 70’s,” she said. “Nothing was ever said about sex offenders.”

The Darke County Sheriff’s Office has done its part in making sure parents can be safely informed before their kids go out to enjoy Trick or Treat this year.

Darke County has 88 registered sex offenders. The Sheriff’s Office, with the aid of 10 other teams, performed a sweep of all registered offenders to make sure they were in compliance with sex offender registration laws.

“It was no accident that the verification sweep occurred in close connection with upcoming Halloween events in Darke County,” Sheriff Toby Spencer said. “We wanted the compliance checks to occur so that Darke County residents could be informed of the most current and accurate information available.”

Click on the website (www.darkecountysheriff.org/) then find the “Sex Offender” list on the left. Type in your address to see who in your area is registered.

The press release noted there was one sex offender currently listed at large, and there’s an ongoing investigation in the case. Three additional offenders were discovered to be non-compliant, however their current locations have been established and are updated. Investigations into their non-compliance will be investigated and forwarded to the prosecutor. One, Michael Bunger, was arrested for failure to notify and living within 1000 feet of a school. A second, Charles Robbins, was arrested on a warrant for a probation violation.

Four out of 88 were non-compliant; a rate of 4.6 percent. The U.S. Marshall’s office says the non-compliance rate in most areas is about 10 percent.

Spencer said random checks will continue in the future. Offenders found not to be in compliance will be dealt with according to the law.

Agencies involved in the sweep were Darke County Sheriff’s Office, United States Marshall’s Service, Greenville Police Department, Ohio Adult Parole Authority, Darke County Adult Probation Department, Ansonia Police Department, Arcanum Police Department and Union City Police Department.


Kids throughout Darke County made their 2013 Halloween costume appearances Thursday in preparation for Trick or Treat Oct. 27 in most communities. Whatever your preference – ghosts, goblins, princesses, cowboys, ghouls… even Nintendo and cartoon characters, such as Maurio & Luigi in Greenville and the Peanuts gang in Arcanum, they were everywhere. Enough candy was handed out to hold most kids over until Sunday, while some might have had a tummy ache Friday morning. (Bob Robinson photo)

Candidates have mixed views on athletics, pressing issues and more

GREENVILLE – Five candidates for three positions on the Greenville City School Board squared off Oct. 21 during the Darke County League of Women Voters’ Meet the Candidates Night at the American Legion. While there was general agreement among the candidates on a few issues, there were differences on others.

Candidates for the 2013 General Election Nov. 5 are Sue Bowman, incumbent, Dave Ernst, Brad Gettinger, David Madden and Cindy Scott, incumbent.

One area of disagreement was whether or not home school students should be allowed to participate in Greenville school sports.

Ernst said no while the others allowed for the opportunity. Ernst said the athletic program is an integral part of being in school. “If they want to participate in athletics,” he said, “they should enroll in the school district.” Bowman said all children should be allowed to participate. Madden noted District residents are tax-paying citizens. “I’m inclined to allow them to play,” he said.

The candidates were more evenly split on whether or not sports are too emphasized.

Ernst said sports are important but noted the kids are “student athletes,” meaning they are students first, athletes second. Scott said sports are important but people tend to confuse passion with emphasis. “I don’t think that takes away from education,” she added. Bowman said employers tend to hire kids who have been in athletics because of the values – teamwork, perseverance – they learn in sports programs. She added students have different talents; some stay in school in order to participate in sports. Madden and Gettinger both felt sports programs were too emphasized, noting that the values learned in sports can also be learned in the classroom.

Madden and Gettinger were asked why they were running as a team. The question was due to both of them being on the same campaign sign. Both indicated it was a fiscal decision. Madden said they aren’t a team. They have their disagreements. Gettinger agreed with Madden, noting it did not affect their ability to be independent. One example of their disagreements, he added, was the design of their sign.

When asked what to do to improve the school board, Scott and Bowman said communication. Gettinger and Madden emphasized better communication with the community. Ernst said the board was perceived as being divisive. “Team disagreements should be kept behind closed doors; they need to lead as a team,” he said.

One question dealt with what the incumbents have learned as board members and what the challengers have done to prepare for a seat on the board. Ernst said he would listen to the board’s two employees: the superintendent and the treasurer. Gettinger said he would listen to the community and act as a voice for the community the board serves. Madden said he attended a state-sponsored candidate workshop and discussed issues with Supt. Doug Fries. Scott said she learned patience, that the board doesn’t move as fast as she would sometimes like. Bowman said working together as a team to make data-driven decisions.

Long range plans for the district resulted in discussions of the Core Standards but also elicited response from Bowman regarding getting kids to return to (or stop leaving) the district, and from Gettinger regarding the quickly changing technology scene and rebuilding respect for the district.

The single most pressing problem for the district involved poverty (Scott, Bowman and Gettinger), while Ernst noted accountability, pride and respect and Madden noted the 450 kids lost from the district this year due to open enrollment.

All candidates were in agreement that the Greenville Technology Center is a strong plus for the district, despite the availability of tech programs in the Miami Valley. Bowman and Scott added they would like to get other students in the county to start coming to Greenville’s tech center.

Five Greenville City School District board candidates took questions from voters Oct. 21 during the League of Women Voters Candidates Night at the Greenville American Legion.

Rhoades named Republican of the Year

GREENVILLE – Darke County Commissioners issued a proclamation Oct. 22 at its regular public meeting congratulating Commissioner Mike Rhoades for being named 2013 Darke County Republican of the Year.

“They messed with me,” said Rhoades, grinning. “Diane and Mike (Commissioners Delaplane and Stegall) had me sign a proclamation for someone else.”

During the Darke County Republican Pig Roast on Oct. 21 Rhoades said he thought it was strange two of his relatives were there… they are Democrats. Then as the “recipient’s” accomplishments were being noted he knew he’d been “had.”

Rhoades is in his third term as Darke County Commissioner.

On Oct. 23 commissioners accepted $300,000 in casino revenue for the third quarter of 2013. The money will be used for sewer lines in need of repair at the Darke County Jail. This money was not anticipated by the commissioners in their 2013 budget.

“Some counties, believe it or not, balanced their budgets on anticipated revenue,” said Rhoades. Then they got in trouble when it didn’t appear as promised

Stegall said they decided to balance Darke County’s budget without planning on any revenue.

“We knew it wouldn’t be what they promised, and it wasn’t. We just didn’t know how much it would be,” he added.

On Oct. 16 commissioners signed a renewal contract with Environmental Enterprises, Inc. for Darke County’s annual Household Hazardous Waste Disposal Day scheduled for Oct. 26.

Commissioners tabled approval of apparent low bidder America’s Decorative Concrete (ADC) recommendation on a Mote & Associates Union City project for Deerfield Road Water Line Improvements to await more information. On Oct. 21, Susan Laux of Mote & Associates provided it.

She noted ADC had limited experience on the type of construction required but added the company is comfortable with the bid with additional supervision.

“The second bid exceeds our limited budget. We can add the additional supervision and still have room to play with the recommended bid,” she said. Commissioners approved the bid award to ADC for $78,600.

On Oct. 23 commissioners accepted a revenue increase of $9,000 for Concealed Weapons licenses. Of that $9,000, $6,000 goes to the state. Commissioners moved the balance of $3,000 to Machines and Equipment Supplies.

Darke County Commissioner Mike Rhoades displays his 2013 Republican of the Year award presented to him at the Darke County Republican Pig Roast Oct. 21.

Oct 26, 2013

Musica opens season Nov. 9

DAYTON - Musica, Dayton’s Chamber Choir, will open its 2013-14 season with performances Nov. 9 & 10, under the direction of new Artistic Director, Michael Fuchs.

The concert, entitled "An Air of Remembrance," will honor and remember those who have gone before us. Music will include Josquin’s "Nymphes des Bois", William Averitt’s "A Song for Billie Holiday," and the world premiere of "Stream of Life," a newly commissioned work by local composer Drew Collins in memory of Musica founding member, Dean Ramga. The program will also feature music by Aaron Copeland, Moses Hogan and Gwyneth Walker.

This ensemble also includes Greenville natives David McKibben, David Priebe, and Becci Miller.

Concerts will be at 3 p.m. Nov. 9 at Lutheran Church of our Savior, 155 Thruston Blvd. E., Oakwood, and 3 p.m. Nov. 10 at The Dayton Art Institute, 456 Belmonte Park N., Dayton. Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for seniors, and free to children and students with school ID. We are also offering this concert free to active duty and retired military with proper ID. For more information, call 619-9755 or visit www.musicadayton.org.

Local motorcycle club to make Christmas brighter

GREENVILLE - The local Road Hogg Motorcycle Club will launch its’ annual Toys for Tikes Campaign in an effort to brighten the holidays for families less fortunate this holiday season in the Darke County area. The campaign will be held on Dec. 1 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in downtown Greenville on the Circle. Club members will be available during this time to accept new and very gently used toys. Cash donations will also be accepted for purchase of food and other items needed by families less fortunate. Community members are reminded that the club will be out on the circle rain or shine and is encouraging everyone to stop by and assist them with this worthwhile project.

This year the Road Hoggs have partnered with Big Brother Big Sisters of Shelby & Darke County. The agency will have an application process available for all families in need, not only in BBBS, but for the general public that need assistance this holiday season. The community is reminded that NOT all applications will be accepted or fulfilled. The process will based on need and availability of supplies. Community members are not to reach out to multiple agencies for help this holiday season. Anyone wishing to receive an application should contact the local Big Brothers Big Sisters office at 547-9622. The agency will have a strict application deadline of Nov. 25 for those families needing assistance. Selected families will be notified Dec. 3 with a scheduled pick up date of Dec. 8 from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the old Mercer Savings Bank located on Broadway in Greenville.

For more information individuals can contact the Big Brothers Big Sisters office at 547-9622. Individuals not able to drop off items on the scheduled date may contact Big Brothers Big Sisters to make other arrangements.

Annual Festival of Trees Dec 6

GREENVILLE – From Dec. 6 until Dec. 8, Sterling House Greenville, a Brookdale Senior Living assisted living community, and Clare Bridge Greenville, a Brookdale Senior Living Alzheimer’s and dementia care community, will be celebrating the Festival of Trees.

The public is welcome to experience the twinkling lights and beautiful decorations of the holiday season at Sterling House Greenville. The festival will include custom decorated trees and wreaths by local businesses and organizations. There will also be a silent auction that will benefit the Cancer Association of Darke County.

The Festival of Trees will be on:
Dec. 6: 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Dec. 7: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Dec. 8: Noon to 2 p.m.

Along with the Festival of Trees, Sterling House Greenville will be hosting a holiday party onDec. 6 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. The community invites guests to enjoy festive appetizers, entertainment and tours of the community.

Darke County Park District on ballot

GREENVILLE - Have you explored any of the twelve Darke County Parks? Or, perhaps your community park has been the recipient of playground equipment, recreational equipment or general upgrades through the Darke County Community Park Improvement Grants. Your great Darke County Park system helps make your community outstanding!

On Nov. 5, the only countywide issue on the ballot will be the ½ mill Replacement Levy for the Darke County Park District. With passage of this levy, the Darke County Park District will receive ½ mill at today’s valuations to be able to better maintain and update facilities, equipment and programming needs for 10 years, starting in 2015. Also, with passage, funding for the Community Park Improvements Grant program will be increased. Since its inception 19 years ago, over $650,000 has been awarded through grants to the local village and Greenville City park, through grant application. All 21 villages and city can apply. Everyone benefits.

The mission of the Darke County Park District is to acquire and preserve land areas possessing special natural and historical features and to manage and maintain these resources for the benefit of its residents through appropriate educational and passive recreational programs and activities. Since 1972 when the Park District was created, all park area lands have been donated to the Darke County Park District.

The original ½ mill levy was passed in 1994 and renewed at ½ mill in 2003. A replacement levy continues a current millage, but at the current tax valuation. It is not a “new” tax but a recalculation of the old tax rate at the current valuation. For the owner of a $100,000 home , with passage of this levy and the changes at the State, you will pay $17.50, for the year. If you qualify for the homestead exemption, you would pay $15.31 for the year.

Good parks raise property values and encourage economic development and tourism. Keep our great park system truly a part of our outstanding community!

The Citizens for Darke County Parks group working for passage of the levy encourages you to vote on Nov. 5.

Community Choir volunteers needed

WINCHESTER, IN - Wanted! Volunteers to sing in a Community Chorus that will perform on Nov. 21 during the “Time for Trees” Open House, sponsored by the Randolph County Extension Homemakers. Practices will be held Nov. 7, 12, 14 and 19 at 7 p.m. in the Winchester Community High School Chorus Room. For more information contact the Randolph County Extension Service at (765) 584-2271.

Oct 25, 2013

Greenville Police Beat

Multi-vehicle accident involves six vehicles, injuries on Russ Road

GREENVILLE – “He had to be doing 50 or 60 miles an hour,” said William Dich. Mark Dich, his father, agreed. Both witnessed the event. Dich then added the black car looked like he went up on the curb, trying to go around. He hit the silver car; the silver one hit the gray one. Another witness, Patsy Riley, said she was getting ready to pull out of McDonald’s and saw the car coming at a high rate of speed. “Uh, uh… I’m not doing that,” she said. The accident occurred a little before 5 p.m. Oct. 17 near the intersection of Russ Road and Wagner Avenue. The vehicle that allegedly started the chain reaction was heading west on Russ. Overall, according to Greenville police, there were six vehicles involved. Greenville Twp Rescue, Greenville Fire Department and the Darke County Sheriff were on scene. Mutual aid was provided by Ansonia, Arcanum and Versailles. According to the official police report a black 2008 Ford Taurus, driven by Craig White, was traveling westbound on Russ Road and struck a tan Pontiac Aztek, driven by Kimberly Berner. The Pontiac then struck a 2010 Dodge Avenger driven by Randell Goins which, in turn, struck a 1999 Oldsmobile Silhouette. All four vehicles had to be towed from the scene. The Oldsmobile struck a 2012 Chevrolet Impala which then struck a 2000 Dodge Caravan. An unspecified number of individuals were transported to Wayne Hospital for treatment. No citations were noted in the traffic report.


On Oct. 11 police responded to Greenville High School regarding two students making death threats. According to the report they were targeting several staff members and students. A knife fell out of the pocket of one of the students who upon questioning advised of the plans. Two other knives were found in his possession. A knife was also found in the possession of the second student. They indicated there was no set date for their plan but had been carrying the weapons on their person for two to three weeks. The students were transported by their parents to Greenville Police Department for questioning. Both students were “pink slipped” and transported to Darke County Mental Health by police. The suspects will be charged for possession of a deadly weapon in a school safety zone and filed with the prosecutor’s office.

On Oct. 13 police were dispatched to the home of an unruly juvenile. She was yelling at her mother; when her older sister visited she yelled at her and threatened to beat her up. The juvenile was ordered to her room and refused. A call to Juvenile Probation revealed she was on diversion for a disorderly conduct charge. The officer advised police could issue the juvenile a citation for unruly conduct. While this was being done, the juvenile said she wanted to kill herself. Greenville Rescue responded and the juvenile went voluntarily to the hospital for evaluation.

On Oct. 16 police were dispatched to Greenville High School regarding a drug complaint. Police found evidence of marijuana use. The juvenile admitted it belonged to him. He was cited into Darke County Juvenile Court for Possession of Marijuana Drug Paraphernalia and Possession of a Controlled Substance.


On Oct. 12 police were dispatched to 312 E. Third St. regarding a burglary. The victim, Genora Moser said someone had entered by the back door of her residence and stole her son’s guitars. A glass pane had been pushed out and the suspect unlocked the door. The victim advised police of possible suspects. Nothing further at this time.

On Oct. 13 police were dispatched to 5438 St. Rt. 49 S. Lot 21 regarding stolen tools from a shed. The victim, John DeBord, stated the tools were there the night before. The handle was attached to a latch on the inside and it appeared the suspect pulled on the handle to break the latch. No suspects at this time.

On Oct. 17 police were dispatched to 311 E. Fourth St. regarding a theft complaint. The victim, Kelly Limmer, stated the suspect Adam Falknor had stolen her phone following an argument. A witness within hearing distance corroborated her story. Falknor denied taking the phone, however due to the comments of the victim and the witness, Falknor was issued a misdemeanor citation for theft.

On Oct. 19 police were dispatched to the Greenville Police Department regarding a theft complaint. The victim, Michael Braun, stated the suspect, Michael Price, had taken several items of his and pawned them. After repeated denials Price admitted to the thefts and turned over three pawn tickets from Greenville Pawn Shop. The tickets had Price’s name and signature on them. A hold was placed on the items with the pawn shop. Price will be cited for receiving stolen property.

On Oct. 19 police were dispatched to 509 Euclid Ave. regarding the theft of a license plate off a motorcycle. The victim was Matt Noehl, the license plate number is 83WDG. No suspects or witnesses at this time.

On Oct. 16 police were contacted by a local business person she found a missing purse in bushes outside the business. Kristin Hargrave had contacted police to say her purse had been taken from her vehicle overnight. The purse was hers; all items were still in it except $40 cash.

On Oct. 13 police were dispatched to 1120 Front St. regarding a burglary complaint. An unknown person had entered through a bedroom window; a T.V. and laptop were missing. There are no suspects or witnesses at this time.

On Oct. 14 police were dispatched to 1037 Washington Ave. regarding a missing Rumpke bin. No suspects at this time.


On Oct. 13 police responded to a private property accident at the car wash on 1017 Sweitzer St. The complainant, Terra Hodge, stated she was vacuuming out her car when a white Grand AM or Grand Prix struck her passenger door causing damage then drove off without stopping. Hodge asked if the business had videos; police advised her they did. The video footage was reviewed and showed Hodge’s vehicle being driven by a male subject with no female there. It showed the vehicle backing up into the vacuum by the male subject. At no point was her vehicle struck by another one. Hodge, when confronted with the officer’s report, said another individual borrowed her car and that was the story he told her. She said she lied because she was afraid the insurance company wouldn’t pay for the damage if she wasn’t the driver. Hodge was issued a citation for filing a false report and misleading an officer with false information.


On Oct. 11, based upon a tip, police went to the area west of DP&L on Sweitzer Street, in the field in the northwest corner near the trailer court and located 12 marijuana plants. They were removed and taken to the Hart Street facility for disposal.


On Oct. 21 police stopped regarding a broken down vehicle being pushed to the curb by the owner, Robert Gray. In the cup holder between the front seats was a 24 oz. can of Steel Reserve beer. It was 1/4 full. Gray was cited for open container.


The Greenville Police Beat is prepared from public records available at the Greenville Police Department. Every effort is made to balance the public’s right to know with the rights of the individuals involved. Readers are encouraged to contact Greenville Police if they have information or concerns regarding these or any other incidents they see. The Early Bird notes all suspects are innocent until proven guilty and welcomes comments and concerns regarding this community service.

Juvenile difficulties usually result of family issues

GREENVILLE – Paul Garrett, Chief Probation Officer for the Darke County Juvenile Court, checked his records…

“Four out of 34 are living with their biological parents,” he said, referring to the juveniles he has in his caseload. He noted it could be a single mom, or the other adult in the family could be a step-parent, a live-in or grandparents. He didn’t think the caseloads of the two other juvenile probation officers, Mike Morris and Lori Miller, would be significantly different.

Garrett was a probation officer for eight years in Huron County before returning to Darke County.

“I had a caseload of 60 kids there,” Garrett said. “Forty-eight of them were living with a single parent or grandparents. Many didn’t even know who their dad was.”

Garrett started his career in Darke County in 1995. He went to Huron County from 1998 to 2006, then returned to Darke County. He is working now with the kids of adults he worked with those first years in Darke County.

“The kids I have now have very similar behavior their parents had. Unfortunately it seems to be a generational issue,” he said.

Garrett added there is usually some sort of underlying family issue leading to a child’s behavior. Adults can deal with so much; little kids have no ability to do that.

“Parents have to be able to address it,” he said. “Unfortunately so many parents are not really engaged in their families. They aren’t giving them the support, advice and proper boundaries.”

Garrett and his two officers currently have 90 to 95 juveniles on probation, plus another 35 or so on diversion.

“Diversion kids are low-risk offenders,” he said. “They have a contract with the court. If they can follow through with the behavioral guides set up for them for 90 days, the issue will be dismissed and they can avoid having a record.”

Diversion juveniles are not supervised. They and their parents are trusted to follow through.

While there are similarities, such as generational behavior, among the kids on probation, each case has its own barriers, obstacles and strengths.

“We try to look at and shore up the strong points,” he said.

Drugs, alcohol, property crimes such as stealing bicycles are most often how kids get into the system. It’s mainly underage consumption or theft of alcohol. Garrett added 10-12 kids a year are involved in sexual crimes.

“The kid gets clipped for something else, we get him in here and start seeing other things,” he said. The juvenile might end up failing a drug screen. “This would be the beginning stages of drug use… experimenting.”

Do they see their kids eventually on the adult jail roster?

“Too many,” Garrett said. “It isn’t typical that someone wakes up at 25 and commits a crime. The inclination has to be there as they are growing up.”

Overall, the juvenile probation department sees a success rate of about 70 to 75 percent.

“It’s a team effort,” he said. “We get a lot of help from Mental Health, Darke County Recovery, Child Protective Services and Gateway… there’s lots of wrap-around. All working together with the same goal for that family.”

Finnarn retires from Boys & Girls Club Board

GREENVILLE - Ted Finnarn, a local Darke County Attorney, recently retired from the Board of Directors of the Boys and Girls Club of Greenville, Inc. effective October 25, 2013. Finnarn had recently departed as Secretary-Treasurer and Assistant Director having served the Club for over 35 years. Finnarn noted that the “Boys Club” was very important in his life when he was growing up and helped him to make it through some difficult times during his adolescent years. Finnarn advised that one of his greatest mentors at the Boys Club was the late Paul Kirkpatrick who served as Director of the Club for many years and also the late Mike Willman who was an early Director of the Club and was on the board for many years.

Finnarn remembered what the late Paul Kirkpatrick always said “A man or woman never stood so tall, as the one who stooped to help a boy or a girl.”

GHS opens doors to winter walkers

GREENVILLE - Again this year, Greenville High School will open its doors to community members seeking a warm, safe place to walk on winter evenings.

The public is invited to walk at the high school from 6 to 8 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays beginning Nov. 4, and continuing through April 3, 2014. There will be no walking during Christmas break. Also, if school is closed during a day or there are parent/teacher conferences, then it will be closed to walking that evening. A complete calendar of available walking dates will be available to walkers at the sign-in desk.

Greenville High School opened its doors to walkers many years ago. The Greenville Board of Education has continued to support this activity in the high school.

Last year, dozens of people enjoyed the program. Greenville City Schools is happy to support this wellness activity to benefit residents of the community. Seven and a half laps around the interior hallway loop is equivalent to one mile. Walkers go in a clockwise direction on Mondays and Wednesdays and counterclockwise on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

The district is pleased to provide a safe, free and warm place for people to walk. The program does not cost the school district extra money because volunteers monitor the walkers and custodians are usually working in the building during the evening. Thank you to those who help monitoring the activity including SADD Club, IMTV, Supply Chain Management, Student Council, NJROTC, members of the school board and school district personnel.

Those interested in walking at the high school are asked to enter by the main entrance by the flagpole, sign in upon arrival and check off their name when leaving. Walkers are asked to walk only on the first floor. No running or jogging is allowed. Also not allowed are wheeled items such as strollers and skateboards. Students under the age of 10 must be accompanied by a parent or adult.

Enjoy the activity to assist you with your wellness.

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