Campus

East Side partners with police to decrease problem parties

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   A partnership on the East Side of Bowling Green has seen success at cutting the number of nuisance parties. As the East Side Residential Neighborhood Group celebrated its 10th annual meeting last week, the members also acknowledged that their efforts were having positive outcomes. “One of our main concerns is trying to stop the deterioration of properties – and keep peace in the ‘hood,’” said Rose Hess, president of the neighborhood group. Hess admitted that the organization spends a lot of time on those two issues. But they are seeing progress. Last year, in the first few months of the fall semester at BGSU, the police responded to 22 complaints of nuisance parties. So far this fall, there have been six nuisance parties. Last year, there were 70 total complaints of parties and offensive gestures or noise, compared to 55 this year. “This year is down in numbers,” Hess said. Hess credited the neighbors, the police and the landlords for creating a more peaceful East Side. The East Side, next to BGSU, has a lower percentage of owner-occupied homes than the west side of the city. The numbers are close to 80 percent rentals and 20 percent owner-occupied in the areas bordered by Enterprise, North Main and Poe roads, and by Lehman, South Main and State streets. And Hess admitted that their organization is a squeaky wheel. “That’s what we’re known as – complainers,” she said. But the group and its partners…


Choirs plan mighty celebration of 500th anniversary of Luther’s theses

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Saturday morning, the trumpet called and about 100 vocalists and instrumentalists gathered in St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Bowling Green to put the final touches on the J.S. Bach Cantata “Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott.” The familiar strains of “A Mighty Fortress” rang out, with voices entwined in harmony, bolstered by trumpet flourishes. The jubilant sound was fitting for a celebration. The University Choral Society will join the St, Mark’s Adult Choir and university soloists and instrumentalists for a presentation on the cantata Sunday at 4 p.m., at the church to mark the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s declaration of his 95 theses, the central event in the Protestant Reformation. The anniversary is Tuesday, Oct. 31. Luther was also a prolific composer of hymns, the most famous being “A Mighty Fortress.” “You just can’t let a big anniversary like that go by without observing it,” said Mark Munson, of Bowling Green State University and director of the University Choral Society. “Bach was one of the great church musicians of the Lutheran church. We have a big active Lutheran church in town, so here we are.  It’s a perfect marriage of a great piece of music on a special day.” The concert will open with a contemporary setting of “A Mighty Fortress” set by Nancy Raabe. She employs the original rhythm, Munson said. “The way we sing ‘A Mighty Fortress’ in our churches now does not swing quite the way it did back then….


BGSU student from Bradner dies in dorm room

Patrick De Luca, 20, a Bowling Green State University junior from Bradner, was found dead Thursday night in his residence hall room. In a statement to the campus community, Vice President for Student Affairs Thomas Gibson wrote: “While the final cause of death is still being determined, early indicators point to natural causes. “ Gibson’s message continued: “Our hearts go out to Patrick’s family and friends, including his sister Callen, who is a senior here at BGSU. If you would like to express your condolences to his family, please send them to sympathy@bgsu.edu, and we will deliver them. “Counselors are available to help the campus community cope with this loss. The BGSU Counseling Center is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.,Monday-Friday, or can be reached by phone at 419-372-2081.”


At BGSU, Clarence Page reflects on Middletown & “Hillbilly Elegy”

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Clarence Page is a story teller. That’s what all good journalists are, the two-time Pulitzer Prize winner said. On Thursday at Bowling Green State University, though, he reflected on someone else’s story, J.D. Vance’s “Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis.” Vance’s book has been selected as the university’s Common Read. Page was invited to BGSU to discuss Vance’s book. Meant to bring everyone together to read the same book and spark discussion, this year’s selection has done the trick. Social media is full of commentary on the book, and even its appropriateness as the Common Read. “Hillbilly Elegy” arrived at the same time as Donald Trump was elected to office, and many reviewers touted it as the book to read if you wanted to understand Trump voters. Vance takes a hard look at his people, who feel displaced in America and are plagued by dysfunctional families and unemployment. This demographic is the most pessimistic of any in the country.  Poor whites are more pessimistic than poor blacks. “Maybe because we’re used to it.” Page, who like Vance comes from Middletown, Ohio, said the book gave him a look at what was happening on the white side of town. Page noted he started out as “colored,” and has been a Negro, black, African-American, before now being a person of color. His family, he said, was “po’” because, according to his father, they were too poor to afford the “or.” But,…


BGSU professor says key to biodiversity may be in our own backyards

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Fostering biodiversity doesn’t require only setting aside large tracks of natural lands. Fostering wild areas amidst farmland and suburbs could very well help maintain the habitat native species need.  That’s especially true in an area like the Great Black Swamp where agriculture and suburbs encroach on the habitat of turtles, butterflies, bats, and the rest of the natural community. Conservation biologist Karen Root discussed her studies the natural habitat of the Oak Openings region. The professor at Bowling Green State University was the opening act in this week’s sustainability activities on campus. The maps she projected showed the threat to the area’s oak savannah and prairies. While forest has increased in some parts, the white areas representing suburbs moved noticeably south in the last decade. To the south of Oak Openings were large swatches of agricultural land, which with their expanse of single crop planting are in many ways the worst habitat for wildlife. Root has been studying the impact that those changes in land use have had. Those studies, she made clear, require getting your boots muddy. Collecting the data takes a host of students and community volunteers. For students that mean keeping track of road kill on certain stretches of road. They found 292 dead animals, 255 of them mammals. “We think that’s unusually high,” she said. Mammals, Root said, are the prime victims of vehicles, and the area where the Oak Opening Preserve and Maumee State meet is the worst spot….


Four pedestrian crosswalks being added to East Wooster

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   BGSU students crossing East Wooster Street will have to worry less about dodging traffic – and motorists will have to be on their toes to not miss the four new crosswalks being added to the street. Four pedestrian crosswalks are being installed on East Wooster Street – one by the Stroh Center, and three between the traffic lights at Manville and South College avenues. A pedestrian safety study was conducted in the fall of 2015 around the Bowling Green State University campus, to identify locations that may need marked crosswalks. “They took all likely crossing points,” Assistant Municipal Administrator Joe Fawcett said. “Our goal is to ensure everybody can cross the road.” The four crosswalks, costing a combined total of $489,191, are being paid for entirely by the Ohio Department of Transportation. Though there will be three crosswalks in a very short distance between the existing crosswalks at Manville and South College streets, Fawcett said the study did not foresee any resulting traffic congestion on East Wooster Street. “They incorporated the traffic counts in their studies,” he said. The construction going on now on East Wooster is the underground infrastructure needed, plus markings and signage. Plans call for the signals to be installed early next year. There are two different types of crosswalks being installed. Both types are new to Bowling Green. Two will be more traditional crosswalks with “refuge islands” in the middle of the street. The other two will be…


Astronaut Mark Kelly was guided by the women in his life

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News To hear Mark Kelly tell it he’s lucky to be alive, never mind standing before an admiring crowd speaking. In his Ordinary People, Extraordinary Lives talk Tuesday at Bowling Green State University, he spoke glowingly of his wife, former U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords, and his mother, and spoke with wry self-deprecation of his own failings and how he overcame them. Growing up in New Jersey he lacked motivation, he said. His father was a stereotypical Irish detective who’d come home about once a year cast on his hand. ”Fighting crime,” he would tell his twin sons, Mark and Scott. They would later learn that these were as much the results of bar fights as crime fighting. Kelly’s mother worked as a secretary and waitress before she decided she too wanted to become a police officer. A small woman she would have to scale a seven-foot, two-inch wall in nine seconds to qualify. Unbeknownst to her, her husband made it an inch taller. When it came time for the test, she scaled it in under five seconds, faster than most of the male candidates. She became one of the first female police officers in New Jersey. “That was the first time in my life I saw the power of having a goal and a plan and what it meant to work really hard for something,” Kelly said. “It certainly motivated for me.” He set a goal of becoming a Navy pilot and beyond that a…


BG council candidates try to win BGSU student votes

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Bowling Green City Council candidates wooed student voters Monday evening with promises to work on decent housing, better job opportunities and more renewable energy. Ten of the 13 candidates running for City Council spent two hours answering questions during a forum at Bowling Green State University. Third Ward candidate Mike Aspacher is running unopposed, so was present but did not participate. At-large candidate Carolyn Kawecka and Second Ward candidate Kent Ramsey were no-shows. The candidates were asked about three local topics by the moderators – rental housing, environmental safety, and the city-university relationship. They were asked how the city could hold landlords more accountable for the condition of rental properties. The question specifically referenced the “power over the city” held by landlords like the Newlove, Maurer and Green families. William Herald (Republican for Fourth Ward) said efforts have been made by the city to improve housing through such proposals as the master plan update. The city has worked on improving the appearance of neighborhoods, but “those efforts need to be continued,” he said. Scott Seeliger (Democrat for Fourth Ward) agreed that housing is a problem. “We certainly have an issue in housing.” He suggested that zoning changes would be the best way to make improvements. “We have to work with the owners. We have to work with the students.” John Zanfardino (Democrat for Second Ward) said the current programs in place for correcting substandard housing are insufficient. “I have grave concerns about…


Composer Jake Heggie’s life is the stuff of opera

By DAVID DUPONT BG INDEPENDENT NEWS   Before the opera, before music, or the words, comes the story, said composer Jake Heggie. “I call this ‘the well,’” he said. “If the well is deep and rich and filled with big emotions and transformation, it just might inspire wonderful words, a strong architecture and potentially beautiful, powerful music.” Heggie have the Edwin H. Simmons Creative Minds series keynote talk, Sunday. He is on campus through Tuesday working with students. For Heggie the most attractive stories are those about the search for belonging and identity, the longing for family. Maybe someone should write an opera about Heggie’s own life. The theme would be the redemptive power of music. When Heggie was 10 his father committed suicide. “He suffered from crushing depression,” the opera composer said. But all Heggie and his three siblings knew is he had abandoned them. “A bomb went off in the family. There was emotional shrapnel and wreckage everywhere.” A week later Heggie turned 11, and he started composing his first songs. He lost himself in the arts. Spending days at the movie theater, watching films, especially musicals. His first goddess was Julie Andrews. “I felt safe and secure with music,” he said. “I spent all my paper route money on music, records, and movies. … I never felt alone though I often felt lonely.” When his family moved from Bexley, Ohio, to southern California, Heggie, who started playing piano at 7, took his first composition lesson. When he…


Horror of Hiroshima leads survivors to push for nuclear disarmament

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Hiroshima bombing survivor Keiko Ogura punctuated her account of the day the nuclear bomb destroyed her city and killed 80,000 instantly, with a simple phrase: “It happened.” It was as if on a beautiful autumn day in Bowling Green, the horrors of another beautiful day, Aug. 6, 1945, would be so unbelievable and needed confirmation. “It happened.” Bodies washed out to sea coming back. Pregnant women who went to the city to seek their husbands, gave birth to deformed infants months later. In a small park near her home, her father created 700 bodies. A sudden flash, silence, darkness descending and a charcoal rain. “It happened,” Ogura said Ogura, an educator at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, and Setsuko Thurlow, also a Hiroshima survivor and nuclear disarmament advocate, spoke at the Wood County Library’s Carter House on Thursday. Their presentation was part of “Seeking Peace in the Nuclear Age: A Peace Symposium” presented at Bowling Green State University. Akiko Jones, who organized the symposium, credited Dr. Marc Simon, a colleague in the Peace and Conflict Studies program, with suggesting hosting an event in the community as well as on campus. After the two survivors had spoken, Simon said that all his university students have learned about the bombing of Hiroshima and later Nagasaki was that it shortened the war. While the Holocaust is taught in detail and rightfully sparks moral outrage, little thought is given to the horrors of nuclear war. Simon said he felt…


BGSU Arts Events through Oct. 31

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Through Nov. 9 – “Milestones: A Celebration of BGSU School of Art Alumni Featuring Studio Arts, Design and the 25th Anniversary of the Digital Arts Program” continues in the Dorothy Uber Bryan Gallery at the Fine Arts Center. The exhibit is part of the 38th annual Bowling Green State University New Music and Art Festival. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, 6-9 p.m. Thursdays and 1-4 p.m.Sundays. Admission is free. Oct. 20– The 38th annual New Music and Art Festival presents Concert 6, featuring the mixed-chamber group Latitude 49 (L49), whose focus on commissioning and supporting living composers has resulted in more than 30 works written for them. Their performance will begin at 8 p.m. at Kobacker Hall in the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free Oct. 21– The 38th annual New Music and Art Festival presents a panel discussion at 10:30 a.m. at the Marjorie E. Conrad, M.D. Choral Room, located in the Wolfe Center for the Arts. Free Oct. 21– The 38th annual New Music and Art Festival presents Concert 7, featuring electroacoustic works by Kong Mee Choi, Asha Srinivasan, Mike McFerron, Scott Miller, Jay C. Batzner and Konstantinos Karathanasis. The performance will begin at 2:30 p.m. in Bryan Recital Hall, in the Moore Musical Arts Center. Free Oct. 21– The 38th annual New Music and Art Festival presents the final concert, Concert 8, featuring the Bowling Green Philharmonia and Percussion Ensemble in a performance of a series of orchestral and percussion works. Tickets are $7 in advance and can be purchased…



New Music Festival guest composers embrace the weird & beautiful in their work

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Steve Mackey and Sarah Kirkland Snider came into contemporary music through back doors. A rock musician in the mid-1970s Mackey was majoring in physics as his fall back plan if his rock star dream didn’t come true. Growing up Snider studied cello, piano and attended choir camp in the summer “Music was my favorite thing to do,” she said. That included writing music which she never showed anyone.  When she went to college she studied psychology and sociology and after graduating ended up working for the Center of Reproductive Justice. To fulfill a requirement in college Mackey took a music history class. Thus exposed him to the world of classical music including Stravinsky’s “Rite of Spring,” which he called “his gateway drug” to new music. At the time, music industry types who heard his band were impressed but said the music was “spacey, weird and undanceable.” Well, Stravinsky’s ballet music was also spacey, weird and famously difficult to dance to. Mackey was impressed that in the “Rite” and other classical pieces “all of human experience was distilled into a listening experience. “ With the rock band he was accompanying beer drinking, flirtation, and fending off requests for Doobie Brothers’ covers. Living in New York, Snider was called on by friends to write music for theatrical productions. She was so involved she was being called on the carpet for missing work to compose. She decided to make the transition into music. Since she had not…


Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Clarence Page to visit BGSU

From BGSU OFFICE OF MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS As part of the Bowling Green State University 2017 Common Reading experience, BGSU will welcome Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Clarence Page, syndicated columnist and senior member of the Chicago Tribune editorial board, as the Common Reading Scholar-in-Residence. Page will participate in a number of events and give a public presentation at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 26 in the Lenhart Grand Ballroom at the Bowen-Thompson Student Union, followed by a question-and-answer time. In his Oct. 26 presentation, Page will address issues of culture and identity in the United States and share his perspective on topics raised in this year’s common read “Hillbilly Elegy.” Like J.D. Vance, author of “Hillbilly Elegy,” Page grew up in Middletown, Ohio, where “Hillbilly Elegy” is set but a generation earlier, attended Middletown High School and went on to a successful writing career. Also during his visit, in a session designed especially for faculty and graduate students, Page will participate in a faculty panel discussion on “Migrations and Cultural Populations” from 3-4:15 Oct. 26 in 207 Union. Moderated by Dr. Ray Swisher, sociology, panelists include Drs. Melissa Miller, political science; Andrew Schocket, American culture studies; and Larry Smith, humanities and English, BGSU Firelands. Dr. Michael Ann Williams, chair of the Department of Folk Studies and Anthropology at Western Kentucky University, will speak about “Appalachian Cultural Landscapes” at 6 p.m. Nov. 2, also in 1007 Business. Vance will be on campus Nov. 29 to discuss his New York Times best-seller, “Hillbilly Elegy.” To register for Page’s talk visit registration.


Helping local vets who came home with traumatic brain injuries and PTSD

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   As many as 25 percent of the U.S. veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan returned home with traumatic brain injuries. Thirty percent came back with post traumatic stress disorder. In Wood County, it’s estimated that 60 veterans are now living with the effects of TBI or PTSD. Many of the traumatic brain injuries were caused by IEDs (improvised explosive devices) frequently used in recent wars. So when Mary Hanna, executive director of the Wood County Veterans Assistance Center, got a call offering her office a $10,000 grant to help treat those problems, she jumped at the chance. “It was very humbling. We will be the first county office to receive funds to do this,” Hanna said. The need is great, she said. “TBI and PTSD dramatically impacts their ability to get through daily functions,” at school, on the job, and with their families. Hanna contacted the Speech and Hearing Clinic at Bowling Green State University, and a partnership was formed to use the grant to help local veterans. “I’m getting ready to notify each veteran about these services,” which will be offered at no cost, Hanna said of the 12,895 veterans living in Wood County. The grant came from Dr. Chrisanne Gordon, founder of the Resurrecting Lives Foundation, who has made it her mission to get better care for veterans returning home with the often invisible injuries of TBI and PTSD. In many cases, veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan…