Articles by David Dupont

Vigil for Orlando moved inside

The vigil for the victims of the Orlando victims will be held inside First Presbyterian Church at 126 S. Church St. tonight (Wednesday, June 15) at 7 p.m. Representatives from community, belief and government entities are expected to participate in the event. The weather report calls for rain throughout the day forcing the vigil inside. It had been scheduled for the green space, next to the church.

Risk of severe weather declines for today (Wednesday, June 15)

From BRADLEY J. GILBERT,  WOOD COUNTY EMA DIRECTOR A fairly large area of showers and thunderstorms are moving through the area this morning (Wednesday, June 15)  from a large area of severe weather to our west last night.  This activity will not be severe. This activity will also release some energy from the atmosphere which could reduce our chances of widespread severe weather this afternoon and evening.  The SPC still has NW Ohio in the “Slight” risk category for severe weather this afternoon and evening. Isolated areas of strong to severe thunderstorms will still be possible later today.  The primary threats will be damaging straight-line winds and hail.  Secondary threats will be an isolated tornado, heavy rain, and frequent lightning.   Again, showers and thunderstorms will move through the area this morning and are not expected to be severe.  It is still advised to monitor weather conditions later today for possible scattered/isolated thunderstorms that could become strong to severe in some areas.

Watch for severe weather Wednesday

From BRADLEY J. GILBERT,  WOOD COUNTY EMA DIRECTOR Overnight, the Storm Prediction Center increased the severe weather risk for NW Ohio to “Enhanced” on Wednesday. We have also just received a severe weather briefing from the Cleveland forecast office with their concerns. This is the first time this year we have been at this risk category. Thunderstorms will develop in the late afternoon and into the evening and possibly continue into the overnight hours. Primary threats from thunderstorms will be damaging straight-line winds, hail, and heavy downpours of rain. Secondary threats include isolated tornadoes and frequent lightning. Please plan on monitoring weather conditions closely Wednesday afternoon and evening. Weather radios and local media should be monitored for the latest weather information and possible warnings.  We will provide another update Wednesday morning via this email and our Facebook page.

Now OH show open to all regional artists

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Bowling Green State University Art Galleries is hosting the Ninth Annual Northwest Ohio (Now OH) Community Art Exhibition. Now OH celebrates the talents of regional artists in a professional setting. The show will open on Friday, July 15 at 7 p.m. with a gallery talk by the award juror Sarah Rose Sharp, followed by the opening reception with light refreshments. Located at the BGSU Fine Arts Center, the exhibition is free and open to the public. A Detroit-based writer, activist, photographer and multimedia artist, Sharp writes about art and culture for Art in America, Hyperallergic, FlashArt, Knight Arts, and others. She was named a 2015 Kresge Literary Arts Fellow for Arts Criticism, and was a 2016 participant in the Art Writer’s Grant Mentorship Program. Artists who display their work at the exhibition are eligible to win up to $1,500 in cash prizes and gift certificates. Among these awards, are a Best of Show award, the Kiwanis Young Artist Awards, Toledo Federation of Arts Societies Award and a People’s Choice Award. Artists of all skill levels 16 years of age and older are encouraged to enter. Online registration is open until July 1. Further information regarding how to enter can be found Artists from the following counties are eligible: Defiance, Erie, Fulton, Hancock, Henry, Lucas, Ottawa, Paulding, Sandusky, Seneca, Williams and Wood. For artists ages 16-18 the entry fees are $15, and for artists 19 and older entry fees are $30. All entrants are able to submit up to three entries. Volunteers are needed to assist with the set up and take down of the event as well as gallery hosting during the exhibition. Artists who volunteer for the event will receive a registration discount. Contact Jacqueline Nathan at for more information about volunteering. Now OH hours are Thursday evenings, 6-8 p.m. and Friday through Sunday from 1-4 p.m. The exhibit will continue until July 30. Show Sponsors include the Toledo Federation of Arts Societies, BGSU Arts Village, Bowling Green Kiwanis, Henry County Bank, Drs. Phipps, Levin and Hebeka, the Art Depo…

Jazz acts ready to jam at Toledo Botanical Garden

From TOLEDO BOTANICAL GARDEN TOLEDO – The Toledo Botanical Garden will present another season of Jazz in the Garden starting July 7 and continuing through Sept. 8. The Thursday night concerts run from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Scheduled to perform are: • July 7, Toledo Jazz Orchestra • July 14, Gene Parker • July 21, Straight Up • July 28, Cakewalkin’ Jass Band • Aug. 4, 6th Edition • Aug. 11, Ramona Collins • Aug. 18, Kelly Broadway • Aug. 25, Mike Lorenz • Sept. 1, Quartet Bernadette • Sept. 8, Soul Hustle Tickets are $10, $5 TBG members and kids under 12 are free. Season passes are $80 adults and $40 TBG members. Parking Main parking at Bancroft entrance with free trolley across garden. Handicap only at Elmer entrance. A barbeque baked goods for sale on grounds. Guests may bring food, wine and beer.

Mustang designer enters Boys State Hall of Fame

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News When Ford Motors wanted to perk up its product line with a car that would appeal to young drivers, they turned to Gale Halderman, the company’s chief designer. He came up with a classic, the Mustang. Buckeye Boys State revved up its Hall of Fame Monday when it inducted Halderman, who turns 84 Tuesday, into its Hall of Fame. Halderman attended Boys State in 1949. He went on to attend the Dayton Institute of Art, and decided he wanted to design cars. He joined Ford as a 21 year old, and spent the next 40 years with the company. He described himself as “just a farm boy who liked to draw cars.” At Ford, the former farm boy designed trucks and tractors as well as the Mustang. Since retiring he’s turned the barn on his family farmstead into a car museum featuring a number of vehicles he designed. Halderman said he gained much during his week at Boys State that served him well in his career. As a member of the newspaper staff, he learned to work with people, even people he didn’t necessarily like. “But you don’t need to tell them,” he said. “You’ve just got to work with people in any career you choose.” Halderman wasn’t the only speaker who recalled the lessons learned from Boys State. Bowling Green Mayor Dick Edwards said those lessons in the hands-on civics program have served him well in his career in government and university administration. He attended in 1956. “I can firmly state my Boys State experience has never left me.” Edwards said he would be remiss as a band alumni if he didn’t “give a shout out” to the musicians in the ensemble, especially his fellow saxophonists. The program continues at Bowling Green State University through Sunday.

Black Swamp Players taking late director’s dream play to state conference

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Dennis East had long wanted to stage “The Black Bonspiel of Wullie MacCrimmon,” a dark comedy about dealing with the devil and curling. Years ago he and his wife, Kathy, had seen the play in Canada, and he just felt would be a great show for The Black Swamp Players to perform back home in Bowling Green. East was a veteran of the troupe, having done everything from set construction to acting to serving as president. Finally “The Black Bonspiel,” with a few approved changes to make it more suitable for a local audience and provide more female roles, made it onto the Black Swamp Players’ schedule for fall, 2013. Then East was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. The play was scrapped as East battled the disease. Finally last September, still in treatment, East brought Wullie MacCrimmon and his colorful cast of Canadian curlers to the First United Methodist stage. Kathy East remembers it was a strain on him. But he persisted.  “He was just determined he wanted to do it,” she said.  As was his practice he built the sets. “He would spend a lot of time in morning, and afternoons he was napping.” He complained, she said, that he used to be able to construct a set in two weeks. The devil-may-care comedy, in which a shoe repairman played by Lane Hakel bets his soul on the outcome of a curling match, or bonspiel, came off so well that the Players opted to submit it as their entry into the Northwest Region of the Ohio Community Theater Association conference. As the conference, held this past weekend, neared East’s condition worsened. He was able to make it to the first rehearsal before the conference. Kathy East said the cast “just did fabulous,” she said. ”The lines just rolled off their tongues.” Impressive given it had been seven months since the play was staged. East noticed that some boards needed to be painted. So he and Kathy brought them home, and she painted them and returned them during the next rehearsal. That, she noted, did…

Bearing witness to Orlando killings draws mixed response in BG (Updated)

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Local residents came out Sunday morning to show their support for the victims of the mass killing in Orlando, Fla. An attacker, Omar Mateen, gunned down people in the Pulse, a gay night club. Fifty people, including Mateen, died at the scene. Another 53 were wounded. With a rainbow flag, a handful of people gathered near the Four Corners in downtown Bowling Green. They were greeted by a show of hands – some gave them a thumbs up, some gave them a middle finger. Bowling Green resident Amy Jo Holland said “it was not a pleasant experience.” There were positives and negatives, she said. Linda Tomajko, of Bowling Green, said some honked in support, others thanked them for being out. A couple “preachers” showed up, she said. “One said he understood why God killed those people because they were sinners.” Another said those at the vigil were destined for hell. One preacher stood in front of them for 30 minutes and “bellowed at the top of his lungs,” said Gwen Andrix, another Bowling Green resident. She said the reaction was “fairly typical” of what happens when members of the LGBTQ community gather to express themselves. Tomajko said she was prompted to act because the attack struck close to home. She learned of it when she first got up this morning. There have been so many shootings in the past months, she admitted the impact on her has dulled. “I have a lot of friends who are gay and trans,” she said, “and when I woke up this morning and saw that stuff… I was imagining so many of my friends and even myself who’s supportive of the effort. It absolutely broke my heart. “This stuff happens every day,” she said. “The difference is instead of being one or two people, it’s 100, 50 dead and 53 injured.  I felt like instead of sitting there and kind of wallowing, I wanted to do something.” As she was leaving downtown this morning to bear witness, someone stopped and asked if a vigil for the victims would…

Horizon Youth Theatre’s “Honk!” delivers important message with smile

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The Horizon Youth Theatre is ready to make some noise. This weekend the youth troupe will stage “Honk!” a contemporary musical retelling of Hans Christian Anderson’s story “The Ugly Duckling.” The musical will be performed at First United Methodist Church, 1526 E. Wooster St., Friday, June 17, and Saturday, June 18, at 7 p.m. and Sunday, June 19, at 2 p.m.  Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for children. Visit Director Cassie Greenlee said the musical is a perfect fit for the young troupe — a fun show with a message. The script was written for a cast of 12 with most actors playing multiple roles. Instead Horizon cast an actor for every part. That meant a role for all those who came out for auditions. That’s a cast of 37, and there’s plenty for them to do. “The secondary characters may be only in one scene but they have a big song or a big part, so we’re able to showcase the talent Horizon has,” Greenlee said. All the members of the cast “have a chance to shine.” That means they all “have a large chunk of responsibility.” Many are “stepping out of their comfort zone, maybe singing solo for first time.” “It’s important to push them out of those comfort zones a little bit and they’ve risen to the challenge,” Greenlee said. Sky Frishman, 16, auditioned for the show because of that wealth of parts. She wasn’t aiming for a particular role, she just wanted to be part of the show. “There were so many good roles,” she said. She’s playing one of the leads as Ida, the Ugly Duckling’s mother. A veteran of eight years with Horizon, she said, she hasn’t had that many leads. Now as Ida, the Toledo School for the Arts student has a number of songs to learn. That’s a challenge, she said. It’s also what Horizon Youth Theatre is about.  The troupe accepts children “no matter how much experience you have, just to learn and grow.” That’s what she’s done. Frishman remembers how “cool”…

Perrysburg Musical Theatre brings stage version of “Big Fish” to Northwest Ohio

From PERRYSBURG MUSICAL THEATRE Perrysburg Musical Theatre will be the first theatre company in Northwest Ohio to debut the funny, fanciful and heartwarming new musical “Big Fish” this summer. “Big Fish” will be staged  June 23, 24, & 25 at 7 p.m. and 26 at 2 p.m. at Perrysburg High School. “Big Fish” is based on Daniel Wallace’s 1998 novel, “Big Fish: A Novel of Mythic Proportions.” The story which features flashbacks and tall tales that come to life, quickly caught the attention of American Screenwriter John August who adapted the novel for the 2003 film “Big Fish.” In 2013, John August brought the story to Broadway with music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa. Variety called it “(A) wholly satisfying show: meaningful, emotional, tasteful, theatrically imaginative and engaging.” PMT’s Big Fish is cast with gifted and talented actors. D. Ward Ensign stars as the charming, charismatic storyteller and father, Edward Bloom. Ensign has been a part of numerous theatrical and musical productions, both on and off stage since being in his first musical, Godspell in 1988. Elizabeth Cottle plays Sandra Bloom, who is patient, calm – the perfect balance to Edward’s enthusiasm. Elizabeth is no stranger to the stage, but this is her 1st production with PMT. “When we had callbacks for the roles of Sandra and Edward, we paired Ward and Elizabeth together to duet the song, “Daffodils”. It was instant chemistry, they became Sandra and Edward,” said Julie Bermudez, Artistic Director for PMT. Also making his 1st time appearance with PMT is Garrett Leininger as Will Bloom. Garrett is the Choir Director for Perrysburg High School. His character, Will is a critical part of the story. He is an earnest, serious, thoughtful young man wanting to reconnect with his storytelling father, but unable to appreciate Edward’s romantic view of life. He has to able to take us on the journey of understanding and make us believe the complex relationship and final heartfelt embrace of his father’s legacy. Playing Will’s wife, Josephine is Esther Swain. Esther is back with PMT (Witch, Shrek the Musical) and recently starred in 3B’s production…

Sun sets the stage for Art in the Park

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News All kinds of artists turned out for Bowling Green’s second annual Art in the Park in Simpson Garden Park. Artists were drawing, painting, doing needle work. Adult and budding actors staged shows. Performer Nick Zoulek blew saxophone; Michiko Saiki blew bubbles. And, of course, there were those who expressed their artistic inclinations by snapping photos with their smart phones. Jacqueline Nathan, president of the Bowling Green Arts Council, said the Art in the Park was a success, drawing at least as many attendees as last year’s inaugural event. Sunny weather in the 80s certainly helped. Aaron Pickens, of Grand Rapids, was painting a line of arbor vitae. Painting outdoors is way of taking a break from his highly detailed and realistic paintings of toys. Those can take 500 hours to complete. But if painting outdoors is fun, it’s serious fun. Painting outdoors is a challenge. There’s so much detail, he said. “You have to learn what to leave out. The landscape taught me how to paint.” Denise Carter was working on a rag rug that will serve as a wall hanging. She pulled brightly colored fabric through the weave of a coffee bean sack. The fabric became flowers, but Carter wasn’t depicting the blossoms in front of her. For her working outside was enjoyable because the colors were so much brighter in the full sun. Nearby in the amphitheater the sun served as stage lighting for theater. The Black Swamp Players offered the all-too-topical political satire “The Spot” about the filming of a candidate’s television commercial. The one-act play cast light on a process where the best kind of authenticity is the totally fake variety. Horizon Youth Theatre offered up an excerpt from their upcoming musical “Honk!” The open air setting seemed quite fitting for the mother duckling played by Sky Frishman to sing about the trials and joys of being mother to a feathery brood. She lamented that her husband was largely absent. She might as well have mated with a decoy, she said. Not all the action was outside. Inside glass artist…

Falcon helped roll out Oval Office carpet

By MATT MARKEY BGSU Office of Marketing & Communications The next time the news cameras are rolling from inside The White House and relaying video from the Oval Office, skip the ornate window dressings, the massive desk and the stoic portraits on the walls, and just focus on the floor. The elegant carpet that President Barack Obama is standing on in his official workplace as he greets foreign dignitaries or huddles with his closest advisors – that carpet has a Falcon imprint on it. There’s no visible logo, no orange and brown threads, but 1978 BGSU graduate Michael Ruggeri leads the company that produced the distinctive piece of floor covering, as well as many others. Ruggeri’s Michigan-based Scott Group Custom Carpets has carved out a unique niche as the leading producer of high-end, one-of-a-kind, ultra-premium carpets. The firm has created a variety of rugs for The White House, including the prestigious Oval Office rug for two different administrations. “In our industry, the Oval Office is the pinnacle,” Ruggeri said about Scott Group being selected to work with The White House interior designers for both the Obama and Clinton presidencies. Each president decorates the Oval Office to suit his tastes, and President Obama selected an oval-shaped rug made of 25 percent recycled wool. This rug features the Presidential Seal in the center, and around its border carries five historical quotations of significance from Martin Luther King, Jr. and Presidents Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and John F. Kennedy. As you would expect, discretion is critical when preparing décor for the home of the president, so when a specific order for The White House arrives at the Scott manufacturing facility in Grand Rapids, Ruggeri said it carries a code name to keep the eventual destination under wraps as long as possible. But once the Oval Office carpet is completed, there comes a time for all of the company employees to take a photo-op standing alongside the soon-to-be-famous rug. “Everything we do is custom from start to finish, but from a prestige standpoint, The White House work we do is a…

Start a new chapter by learning to play ukulele at library

From Wood County District Public Library Book groups and ukuleles take center stage at Wood County District Public Library (251 N. Main St., BG) in the library’s upcoming adult programming for the week of June 13 – 19. Events are free and open to all. Monday, June 13 · Kristin Wetzel leads the Page to Table cookbook discussion group meeting at 6:30 pm in the Carter House. This month’s meeting focuses on “Food Network Stars.” Participants, may bring a dish prepared from a cookbook by their favorite Food Network chef, along with a copy of the recipe, noting any changes made. The library will supply flatware and dinnerware. Tuesday, June 14 · The library’s Diversity in America book group, led by Jim Litwin meets in the 1st Floor Meeting Room to discuss Sally Denton’s American Massacre. Thursday, June 16 · Coffee Talk book group, led by Kristin Wetzel, holds its annual “Book to Film Day” in the 1st Floor Meeting Room. At 10:00 am the group will discuss Brooklyn by Colm Toibin. Following a break for lunch, the group resumes its meeting at 1:00 pm to watch the book’s critically acclaimed film adaptation (Oscar nominee Best Film and Best Screenplay, Nick Hornby), featuring Saoirse Ronan (Oscar nominee, Best Actress). Sunday, June 19 · Ukulele playing is taking the area by storm, thanks in no small part to the Grande Royale Ükulelists of the Black Swamp (GRÜBS). If you have a ukulele and are looking for a fun, friendly, and helpful group to explore your instrument with, join members of the GRÜBS at 3:00 pm this Sunday in WCDPL’s 1st Floor Meeting Room. All skill levels are welcome; all you need is a ukulele and sense of adventure. Due to space limitations, RSVPs to the Adult Services department (419-352-5050) is appreciated, but not required. For more details about these and other programs for adults at WCDPL, call the library at 419-352-5050.

Buckeye Boys State convenes at BGSU

More than 1,200 young scholars from throughout Ohio will be at Bowling Green State University Sunday,June 12, through Sunday, June 19, for American Legion Buckeye Boys State. Students learn about city, county and state government by creating a mock government. City, county and state officials, along with American Legion volunteers, typically take part. Participants at Buckeye Boys State are also eligible for the BGSU Buckeye Boys State Achievement Scholarship. The automatic $1,000 scholarship for Boys State participants is renewable yearly and may be combined with other university scholarships. Buckeye Boys State was founded in 1936 and has been held at BGSU since 1978. In a letter this week to staff and faculty President Mary Ellen Mazey stated: “We’re committed to doing everything we can to continue this great collaboration.” She continued: “Buckeye Boys State and the dozens of summer conferences and camps we host give us the opportunity to showcase our campus and provide prospective students and their families with a taste of the BGSU experience. Our incoming freshman class includes 68 alumni from last year’s Boys State.