Search for water extends west to wells, north to Detroit

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   As Lake Erie starts to take on a green tint again this summer, entities north of Bowling Green are  scouting for quality, affordable water – with no clear source in sight. So the search continues, now shifting west to an underground water source, and north to Detroit. Proposals change by the week, according to representatives of the Northwestern Water and Sewer District, who recently updated the Wood County Commissioners on the issue affecting much of the northern half of the county. The district provides water to 6,500 customers in Northwood, Rossford, Walbridge, Lake Township, Perrysburg Township and Troy Township. The water is purchased from the city of Toledo – and future contracts with the city are on shaky ground. The proposed Toledo Area Water Authority – which many had pinned their hopes on as a solution that would work for the entire region – appears to be dead in the water, according to Jerry Greiner, executive director of the district. Toledo balked at the idea of sharing ownership of its water plant, even though it meant other entities would then help with the towering expenses to update the plant. “Whether you’re the city of Toledo or Bloomdale, cities don’t want to give up their utilities,” said Rex Huffman, attorney for the district. But the district, Huffman said, sees the water customers as the owners – not the city. With the sinking of the TAWA plan, Toledo is now offering another possible option. Last week, Toledo Mayor Wade Kapszukiewicz talked about establishing a regional water commission with representatives from each community that buys Toledo’s water. The commission would then set water rates for all customers based on the true cost of service and would make decisions about capital improvements. The district is willing to consider any viable option, Greiner and Huffman said. “Some easily dismiss it, and say ‘I don’t want to deal with Toledo.’ But I think that’s a mistake,” Huffman said. The district may support this concept if it meets the long-term goal of reasonable, uniform, fair water rates, Greiner said. Water customers in Wood County share one priority. “That’s the number in the lower right hand corner of their bill,” Huffman said. Toledo rates have always been the lowest in the region – but major improvements are needed at the water plant, Greiner said. Bowling Green and Oregon rates are good, but both would need expansions to serve the district. So the district is continuing to consider all its water options, Greiner said. That includes…


Rising blues star Samantha Fish ready to connect with Black Swamp Arts Festival audiences

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News When the Main Stage acts for the 2018 Black Swamp Arts Festival were first posted, a number of music fans lit up social media at the sight of Samantha Fish’s name as the festival closer. Two months from now, on Sunday afternoon, rising blues star Fish will take the Main Stage to round out the weekend’s performances. The 26th Black Swamp Arts Festival runs from Sept. 7 through 9 in downtown Bowling Green. Since the Kansas City, Missouri -based artist emerged on the blues scene about 10 years ago, she’s caught the eye and ear of blues lovers. Last year she released her fifth solo album on Ruf Records. Those records are important, she said in a recent telephone interview, even in today’s changing music business landscape. “An album is a marker of growth. It’s a legacy …. People need something to take home to listen to.” But a recording can only capture so much. The real connection between listener and performer comes in person. “There’s something about seeing someone live,” Fish said. “You see the passion. These guys sweating it out, really living in the moment, and delivering a song that connects to your life. You don’t get that from listening to a record.” Hearing live shows, whether at a festival in Arkansas where she first heard the rawer version of Delta blues or a Kansas City club, where she heard the legends of the music, is what hooked Fish on the music. That was when she was in her late teens. “I was looking for something real, and I found it there.” Fish said she’d also had her eye on doing something in the entertainment business since she was a child. To those around her dancing and theater were “pipe dreams.” She started playing drums at 13, and then picked up guitar at 15. Later she started going to jam sessions to hone her craft. “I didn’t know how to go from wanting to do something to making it happen,” Fish said. “In those clubs, I saw that music was happening all over, not only Los Angeles. … It just gave me some hope I could write my songs and sing and play guitar and make a decent living out of it.” She got a band together, and started making calls. It was like being “a telemarketer,” she said. The band landed some gigs, and that earned her some fans. It got her recognized as the Best New Artist at the Blues Music Awards in Memphis. A…


Giving the gift of gab – Volunteers sought to visit with seniors

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   More senior citizens are living independently in their homes, thanks to physical modifications to their houses and home-delivered meals. But some of those seniors are missing a vital component to a happy life – human contact. They may go days without engaging in a conversation, said Lisa Myers, director of social services at the Wood County Committee on Aging. “We’ve noticed a need from our seniors who are homebound or on meal deliveries,” Myers said. Many seniors really enjoy the brief contact with those delivering meals. “But sometimes that’s just not enough.” So efforts are underway to create a volunteer “Friendly Visitor” program for senior citizens in Wood County. The goal of the program is to reduce loneliness and isolation in older adults. Social isolation has been shown to increase rates of depression and mortality, Myers said. “People need that social interaction, or it can lead to a decline in their mental and physical health,” she said. The role of the volunteers is simple – just talk and listen. They are not there to cook or clean. Just engage in conversation. Volunteers will be asked to visit their senior’s home at least one hour a week, to just sit and chit-chat. “We’re just looking to connect people,” Myers said. “We’re hoping these are lasting friendships.” Senior citizens can qualify for the visits if they live alone, receive the home-delivered meals, if they can’t drive to one of the county’s senior centers, or if they are on the Wood County Adult Protective Services client list. So far, four seniors have signed up. So now, the Friendly Visitors program needs volunteers to sign up. The program will be available throughout Wood County, so volunteers and seniors will be matched by geography. Volunteers will go through a brief training with Myers, and will be asked to submit a quarterly report on their time with their senior. The volunteers will also be asked to be the “eyes and ears,” and observe any problems the senior might be having. “This should be a fulfilling volunteer job. Both people would benefit,” Myers said. Requirements for Friendly Visitor volunteers are: At least 21 years old. Able to commit for six months. Desire to work with older adults. Willingness to complete a background check. Wood County Adult Protective Services will pay for the background checks. The role of the volunteers will be: Communicate with the senior weekly. Spend a minimum of four hours per month, one-to-one with the senior. Provide emotional support. Build meaningful relationships….


Poetry in motion – Sandra Faulkner explores link between women & running

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News When Sandra Faulkner wanted to study women runners, she used poetry as well as footnotes. Earlier this year, Faulkner, a professor in the School of Media and Communication, published “Real Women Run: Running as Feminist Embodiment.” The book is deeply personal scholarship. Early on Faulkner traces her own history as a runner, starting when she was 11 years old, growing up in the suburbs of Atlanta. She ran so hard her nose started bleeding. She didn’t notice until she finished the race, and won third place. But she missed the awards ceremony because her mother couldn’t staunch the bleeding. Her life as a runner has been full of small triumphs, injuries, and frustrations – sometimes at the same time. Though Faulkner says she doesn’t race to place, she’s still competitive. After one race she saw that she was fourth in her age group, but she thought there were only four runners in that class. Only later didn’t she learn there were more than that. Her life as a runner is told in brief journal-like entries, and each is paired with a haiku. One reads: “Don’t call us a girl / don’t call us a girl jogger / fierce women running.” The personal stories are “in service critiquing, discovering, uncovering larger social patterns,” she said. They take us up to Sept. 3, 2016, when Faulkner is 44 and has a daughter of her own, who cheers on her mother and herself has started running. “She’s more of a sprinter,” Faulkner said. This was the right time for Faulkner, an ethnographer, to research women and running. She would never have done this as a dissertation. When she used interviews for her dissertation on Sex and Sexuality at Penn State, where she studied interpersonal communication, it was considered unconventional. But when “Real Women Run” was starting, Faulkner had tenure and was taking the next step of applying for promotion to full professor. She had already completed a much cited book on poetic inquiry, “Poetry as Method: Reporting Research through Verse.” “I’m convinced that this book wouldn’t have happened until that exact point.” BGSU, where she’s been on faculty for 11 years, was the place to do it. “BGSU has been a great place for me.,” Faulkner said. “I have felt very supported in my work. I think this is my best work. I feel very satisfied and pleased.” Last fall, she coordinated an international conference on poetic inquiry on campus. It was held in conjunction with the annual Winter Wheat writing conference….


Stadium View fills housing niche in BG for 50 years

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Fifty years ago, the property where Stadium View Apartments now stands was an empty field. Cattle grazed at the neighboring Carter Park property. Nearby, Bowling Green State University was growing, and was running out of housing for students. So Norm and Barb Holley had a vision. “This was just a field,” said Ryan Holley, grandson to Norm and Barb. “BGSU was going through a boom and didn’t have places to put students.” So the couple built an apartment complex off Clough Street near Campbell Hill Road. “They called it Stadium View because at the time you could see the stadium,” Ryan Holley said. That view is no longer there, being blocked by commercial buildings. But the apartment complex is still owned by Norm and Barb Holley, who continue to live next door. Taking over management from the founders were their children, Rob Holley and Cindy McCarthy. Now managing the complex is their grandson, Ryan Holley. On Wednesday, July 11, Stadium View Apartments will celebrate its 50th anniversary, from 4 to 7 p.m. The apartment complex, with 224 units, now specializes in non-student housing. “We saw a need for housing not just for students,” Ryan Holley said. “That’s been our niche ever since.” The strategy has worked for the family. “We almost always have a waiting list,” Holley said. “Our business model is all about the retention, not the turnover.” “We’ve had residents here for 40 years, 30 years,” Holley said, noting that one resident knew him as a baby. The average resident’s stay is eight years. The secret, he said, is taking care of the apartment complex and changing with the times. “We take a lot of pride in our property,” he said. “It’s a reflection on us. We love this community.” Stadium View offers residents an indoor and outdoor pool, fitness center, playground, plus easy access to Carter Park, BGSU and Interstate 75. Capital improvements are frequently being made at the complex, such as new boilers, windows, ceiling fans, and LED conversion as the complex “goes green.” Stadium View allows pets, and since the early 2000s has gone completely non-smoking. The complex also offers recycling collection. Holley called the complex a “hidden gem.” “We don’t really advertise,” he said, adding that word-of-mouth comments are enough to keep names on the waiting list. The Stadium View 50th celebration will be held in the complex party room, both inside and outside. There will be scrapbooks of old photos, local pizza, High-Flying Hotdogs, cake, and jazz music by the…


New hotel going up in BG where Victory Inn came down

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   A new hotel is being built on the site of the defeated Victory Inn in Bowling Green. The owner of the Victory Inn – Jamal Garmo of Michigan – is building a new Home 2 Suites by Hilton, which specializes in extended stays. The old Victory Inn was demolished in 2015 after nearly five years of Bowling Green and Wood County Health Department officials trying to get hotel to clean up issues. The hotel, at 1630 E. Wooster St., was frequently the source of complaints about bedbugs, plumbing and electrical problems, the lack of smoke alarms and cleanliness violations. Garmo approached the city’s Zoning Board of Appeals in 2016, since the new hotel exceeds the city’s height and story limits. His request was for a variance to allow construction of a 107-room hotel on the eastern portion of the seven acres that previously housed Victory Inn. The proposed hotel is 65 feet tall, five feet taller than allowed, and five stories high, one story higher than allowed in B-2 general commercial zoning The request was initially turned down. By building upward, the 107-room hotel would have a much smaller footprint than the two-story Victory Inn which had 103 rooms, the developer said. The developer also said the smaller footprint of the taller hotel will allow for other businesses on the seven-acre site. He said the remainder of the property could possibly be “mixed use” with some retail, office and residential. Garmo filed an appeal of the city’s decision, stating the denial was “unconstitutional, arbitrary, capricious and an unreasonable exercise of discretion.” The appeal also stated the denial posed an “unreasonable hardship” against Garmo. In November of 2016, the city changed the zoning language to allow a hotel to have five floors, as long as the height of the building did not exceed 60 feet.


BG may try electric credit to jolt industrial growth

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Bowling Green officials hope a new electric credit may get some industries charged up to increase their power usage. The Board of Public Utilities recently discussed adoption of a development electric rate rider, which would give a short-term savings to medium large industries that expand their electric use. There are about 80 industries in the city that would qualify. The industries would have to increase electric usage by at least 10 percent, plus sign an economic development agreement with the city. It hasn’t yet been determined if the credit would extend for three or five years. But each year of the program, the credit would reduce. For example, during the first year the company could get 30 percent credit. That could decrease to 20 percent the second year, and 10 percent in the third. The ultimate goal – in additional to selling more electricity – is to create more jobs in Bowling Green, according to Brian O’Connell, director of public utilities for the city. Vehtek, for example, has upped its electric use to 9 megawatts, and has increased its workforce to about 750 people, O’Connell said. The largest electric users in the city are Bowling Green State University, Vehtek and Southeastern Container. Increased electric sales would also help the entire city, he added. The credit would also be offered to new businesses. “That may be why somebody might want to be here,” O’Connell said. “By bringing in a new customer, it helps the existing customers as well.” The board will continue to discuss the issue at its July meetings. Also at the public utilities meeting, the board agreed to advertise for bids for tree trimming and removal services. The four-year contract with Nelson tree service is coming to an end at the close of 2018. Trimming of trees helps reduce power outages caused by fallen limbs, O’Connell said. The contract has four one-year cycles, with each ward in the city being done at a time. Nelson is in Ward 1 this year. The budget includes $110,000 for this service, O’Connell said. The board also approved a renewal of the city’s contract for wastewater collection and treatment to the village of Portage, located south of Bowling Green. The agreement has been in place since 1991, but the village has started to exceed its limit of 75,000 gallons a day. Portage has its own wastewater collection system that pumps as far at the city lines at Dunbridge and East Gypsy Lane roads. The town also has a company that…


Black Swamp Arts Festival’s juried art show takes shape

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News When Marissa Saneholtz was a kid she’d squirrel away her allowance in anticipation of the Black Swamp Arts Festival. She could always find a ring or print that she wanted to buy, she said. “I’ve been interested in art forever. This year Saneholtz, who teaches metalsmithing at the Bowling Green State University School of Art, is one of the jurors who selected the artists and artisans who will exhibit in the juried show. The Black Swamp Arts Festival will be Sept. 7. 8, and 9 in downtown Bowling Green, starting with music, food vendors, and beer garden on Friday, Sept. 7, and continuing with art, music, youth activities, food vendors, and beer garden, Saturday Sept. 8 and Sunday, Sept. 9. “It was really amazing to be asked to jury it,” Saneholtz said. She joined Dan Chudzinski, curator for the Mazza Museum, and painter Jessica Summers on the panel. Saneholtz doesn’t think people will have difficulty finding something that catches their fancy. “Overall there’s such a wide variety of artists that apply.” Knowing the community helped inform her work as a juror. “I know what price points people will buy at, from the kid saving their allowance to the professional.” She has her taste, she said, but must look beyond that. “I’m also trying to think: Would my family members want to buy this?” High quality is first and foremost for the jurors, she said. “I mean there’s always the people who just blow your socks off.” Artists apply through the online service Zapplication. They must submit slides of their work, their display, and their process. The jurors then review those slides individually before coming together as a panel to make final decisions. Just over 200 artists and artisans applied this year. Stacy and Josh Poca, are chairing the festival’s visual arts committee this year. They said a few artists got the highest marks in the first round, and immediately made it into the show. Also the winners from last year’s show automatically get a spot, and all but one are coming back. There were also a few whom jurors agree didn’t make the cut before the jurying session, Stacy Poca said. But most fell somewhere in between. The jurors look for the best work as well as a balance of media. Jewelry always accounts for the greatest number of applications. That’s why about 10 years ago, the festival decided to increase the jurying panel to three, so they always have a metalsmith looking at the work. That’s Saneholtz, who…


National manhunt continues for 2 men charged with rape and kidnapping of BG sisters

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   The national manhunt continues for two men wanted for the alleged rape and kidnapping of two sisters, ages 13 and 14, in Bowling Green. Two other men have been apprehended for the crime. Simon Juan Thomas, 24, from Guatemala, was arrested last week in Bowling Green. David Ramos Contreras, 27, from Mexico, was apprehended Thursday by the U.S. Marshals Service, in Lubbock, Texas. The two suspects remaining at large are Juan Garcia Rios Adiel and Arnulfo Ramos. The four men are charged with the rape and kidnapping of the two girls on June 28, according to Bowling Green Police Lt. Dan Mancuso. The sisters were staying at Days Inn, in Bowling Green, with their mother. The address listed for the family is Bowling Green. The four men were also staying at the hotel at the time. Police were notified after the mother took the girls to Wood County Hospital. Thomas was arrested by Bowling Green Police the next day. He was charged with unlawful sexual conduct with a minor and is being held in the Wood County jail with a $50,000 bond. Warrants were issued for the other three men. Police received a tip that Contreras was seen at the Walmart in Spring Meadows, in Lucas County, last Saturday, June 30. A store video captured images of Contreras walking with two women. Police were able to locate the women and determined they were not connected to the suspect, Mancuso said. “They believed he needed some assistance,” Mancuso said. “They believed they were doing a good deed helping someone out.” Information was then developed placing Contreras in Lubbock, Texas, after investigators for the U.S. Marshals Service and Bowling Green Police followed leads developed over the last two days. Contreras, who was found hiding under a bed in Lubbock, will be extradited back to Ohio. “He will come back to Wood County to face the charges,” Mancuso said. Nationwide warrants have been issued for the remaining two men at large, and numerous law enforcement agencies, including ICE, are working to find them. The case has received national attention, being posted on CNN news earlier this week. Bowling Green Police Division is receiving calls from across the nation, Mancuso said. “We still are getting numerous tips,” he said this morning. “We’re getting tips from other areas.” Bowling Green police are following up on local leads, and contacting other law enforcement on tips reported elsewhere in the country. “We still are receiving some tips that they are in the area,” Mancuso…


Good news: County getting 1,000 new jobs; Bad news: Region running out of workers

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Wood County is having a banner year in business expansions – creating nearly 1,000 new jobs. But the issue waiting in the wings is the low unemployment level in the region, wavering between 3 and 4 percent. While that low rate is great news to employees, it is also worrisome to economic development officials. “It’s a good thing. But there is going to be a time when new businesses slow down looking at Northwest Ohio,” Wade Gottschalk, executive director of the Wood County Economic Development Commission, said Thursday morning during his quarterly report to the county commissioners. But right now, Wood County is reveling in the news that four manufacturing plants are expanding here: First Solar, in Lake Township, investing $400 million and creating 500 jobs. Walgreens, in Perrysburg Township, investing $80 million and creating 350 jobs. Continental Structural Plastics, in North Baltimore, creating 100 jobs. Equity Meats, in Bloom Township, creating 50 jobs. “It’s been a very busy start for the year,” Gottschalk told the commissioners. And three other businesses have shown great interest in locating in the county, making multiple visits here, he added. “There are three percolating through the system,” Gottschalk said, without revealing the business names. Wood County has an estimated 60,000 people in its labor force. So 600 jobs is about 1 percent of the unemployment rate, he explained. That means the county’s ability to attract new industry will become more challenging. Gottschalk predicted that companies with upper tier wages will still be able to attract employees, but others may struggle to fill positions. “It will make it more difficult to attract average-pay employers,” he said. Existing companies in Wood County are already having trouble filling empty positions, Gottschalk said. “The available labor force is relatively small,” he said. For years, Ohio has been attractive to prospective employers because of the strong work ethic associated with employees. “Ohio has a very good reputation for its labor force,” Gottschalk said. “It just doesn’t have enough.” The state is seeing its older population grow, and its younger population not being replenished. “There are a lot of people looking at the labor situation,” he said. “We have an aging population and a very low growth rate. There will be a smaller labor force to draw on in the future,” Gottschalk said. In order to promote manufacturing jobs to young prospective workers in Wood County, the economic development office is holding its second annual Manufacturing Camp this summer. The students will work with people from NASA,…


BGSU has long to-do list of summer construction projects

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Orange construction fencing is back in style at Bowling Green State University. Once students leave the fences go up for projects, large and small. Some are unglamorous, though essential, like the upgrading of the tunnel under Thurstin Street that brings services from the university steam plant  to campus. Others are signature projects. With the Kuhlin Center completed a few years ago, and the renovated University and Moseley halls opened for business last fall, now the university turns its attention to the Robert W. and Patricia A Maurer Center. The Maurer Center will cost $44.5 million, with other projects coming in at $18.66 The Maurer project will transform Hanna Hall into the new home for the College of Business. That includes a 40,000-square-foot addition twice the size of the original building. Bruce Meyer, interim vice president for capital planning and campus operations, said the remediation of the inside of the building is complete, now interior demolition will begin. Workers will remove windows and knock down walls. Programming to determine the interior layout is being completed. The project is scheduled to be completed by the start of the fall, 2020, semester. The concept is to open up the inside space while maintaining a vintage look on the exterior of the existing building. Hanna’s east wall will be preserved with the new addition built over it. The building will incorporate the traditional with the contemporary, Meyer said. The open space will be conducive to collaboration among faculty and students. The style will be like a modern corporate space allowing for a smoother transition for students going from campus to careers. Work in the new movie theater spaces in Olscamp and the student union has commenced. That’s where the Gish Film Theater programming will move. The seats from the Gish have been put in storage, Meyer said. The summer started with one of the most notable projects – the demolition of Harshman Quad. Meyer said the removal of the residence hall complex opens up the view into campus. He said he’s surprised by the number of people taking photos of the site and the campus beyond. The debris will be removed by late August with the project finally buttoned up by October. Grass and trees will be planted, he said, as university officials ponder future use of the site. One possibility is an expanded parking lot, but Meyer said administrators want to make sure that’s where parking is needed. The nearby basketball courts are also being repaired and will be ready for play…


BG twins rescue toddler from deep end of hotel pool

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   The 6-year-old twins are unlikely heroes. The two blond boys, in their matching swimsuits, rescued a toddler who jumped in the deep end this past weekend at a hotel pool in Florida. The twins – Bryant and Peyton Switzer – who are taking swimming lessons this week at Bowling Green city pool, talked about the rescue before their class started on Tuesday morning. “Pretend over here is the shallow end,” Bryant said pointing to the city pool. “She was just playing in it.” But then the 3-year-old took off her water-wing flotation devices and jumped in the deep end. The boys were old enough to realize she needed help. “He jumped in and put his arm around her,” Bryant said of his brother, Peyton. “Then he gave her to me, and I got her out.” The little girl was frightened, but the twins stayed calm. “She was a little scared when she was in the deep end,” Bryant said. The boys’ mom, Amy Walters, of Bowling Green, said they had gone to Orlando, Florida, for a work trip. The twins were in the hotel pool with Walters’ fiancé, D.J. Dieter, when the incident occurred. “She had seen the big boys playing and splashing around,” and apparently wanted to join in, Walters said of the little girl. “They didn’t even think twice. They went into action,” Walters said. “We’re very proud of them.” The toddler’s mom expressed her thanks to the young heroes. “The mother was extremely grateful,” Walters said. The boys, she said, are very comfortable in the water. “They are little fish. They’d live in the water if you’d let them,” Walters said. Mia Schempf, the twins’ swimming lessons teacher at BG city pool, said the boys are strong swimmers for being so young. “They are super smart kids,” she said. It just happened that last week, one of their classes focused on water safety. “We teach them safety in and around the water,” Schempf said. “It’s awesome they were able to save someone.” After Monday’s swimming class, the boys’ bravery was recognized by State Rep. Theresa Gavarone, R-Bowling Green, who presented Bryant and Peyton with certificates honoring their heroism.


Schedel Garden benefit harvests dollars for library books

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News The board meeting room in the Wood County District Public Library is filling up. New treasures arrive every day, said Library Director Michael Penrod. That includes a grill and a bicycle. There’s hand-crafted wooden box by John Calderonello and glass by Dominick Labino and Joel O’Dorisio. Hidden among them are gift certificates from numerous local business. The items are arriving in advance of the 10th Annual Library Benefit at Schedel Arboretum and Gardens, Thursday, July 19, 6-8 p.m. Attendees will also feast on hors d’oeuvres catered by Swig’s and tour the gardens. The price of a ticket is $100 and only 100 are sold. Tickets are available at the library. The focal point is the live auction, said Clif Boutelle, president of the Library Foundation, sponsor of the fundraiser. The bidding gets “very spirited.” People enjoy trying to outbid each other. Items also include a week at a Florida Gulf Coast condo, a family portrait session with Cheryl Hagemeyer, and golf with BGSU coach John Powers, either a 45-minute lesson or a nine-hole round. Then there are Sue Shank’s cookies, Boutelle said, which “seem to be very popular.” Shad Ridenour returns as the auctioneer. Attendees aren’t there trying to get an item on the cheap, Penrod said. Rather they bid enthusiastically. That spirit is fueled by an understanding of what the library contributes to the community and a desire to help it continue its mission. The purpose of the Schedel benefit is to raise money to buy books, both printed and ebooks. Last year $116,000 was raised. Penrod said that money does not replace money from the library’s levy or state funding. It supplements that funding. Boutelle said the fundraising is a way of thanking the community for its support of the library. The money raised has allowed the library to spend $442,000 on materials last year. Boutelle said the goal is always set at $75,000. They never want to take the generosity of those who attend for granted. That generosity starts, said Penrod, with the 15 members of the foundation board who reach out to friends and business associates to get the auction items Penrod said those efforts were “a blessing.” The Schedel fundraising started at the initiation of Bob and Patricia Maurer in 2009. The deepening recession was starting to take a toll on the library budget. So the Foundation, which was created in 1994, decided to stage the auction. “It’s allowing us to make a tangible difference in serving the community,” Penrod said. That allows the…


BG celebrates 4th with symphony of sights & sounds

By DAVID DUPONT BG Independent News Bowling Green marked the July 4th holiday Tuesday with its annual concert and fireworks display. The Bowling Green Area Community Band and BiG Band BG opened with a concert of patriotic favorites and show tunes. The finale was provided by the orchestrated blasts and bursts of the fireworks. The event, on the intramural fields on the Bowling Green State University campus, was presented by the Bowling Green Chamber of Commerce.          


BG struggles to find right words for charter preamble

By JAN LARSON McLAUGHLIN BG Independent News   Bowling Green officials are debating how to best reflect the city’s values in the fewest words possible in the preamble of the city charter. The charter has long been limited to addressing city governance. But during a recent review by a charter update committee, it was suggested that the preamble say more about exactly what Bowling Green stands for. The committee recommended that council create a statement about non-discrimination to place in the preamble. So council members Daniel Gordon, chair of the Community Improvement Committee, Bill Herald and John Zanfardino took a stab Monday evening at coming up with a little language that says a lot about the city. “We want to set out foundational language for what the city is supposed to be about,” Gordon said. “We want to define who we are as a people and what the community stands for,” he said. Here is the current city charter preamble: “We the people of Bowling Green, in the county of Wood, and in the State of Ohio, desirous of securing for our city and for ourselves and our children the advantages of self-government conferred by the home-rule provisions of the Ohio constitution, do hereby ordain and establish the following charter. Here are five proposals for additional wording that were presented Monday evening. Mayor Dick Edward’s: …. “and in keeping with the City of Bowling Green’s determination to be a welcoming city, a city that adheres to practices of non-discrimination as established by law, a city committed to neighborhood livability and a city that embraces energy sustainability” … Council member Daniel Gordon’s: … “and determined to be a welcoming, inclusive community with strong neighborhoods and equitable quality of life; to serve the common good; and thereby to ensure the safety and freedom of all the people of Bowling Green, who seek to live their lives in peace” … Council member Bill Herald’s: … “We do this in the hope of molding a distinctive place where people can live with mutual respect, civility, and service to one another in a supportive community.” Charter committee member Mark Hollenbaugh’s: … “We do this as a collection of unique individuals with the desire that all our citizens be valued for who they are, and they be empowered by the rights and respect inherent in all people.” Charter committee co-chair Shannon Orr’s: … “and in adherence to practices of anti-discrimination established by law.” One of the big questions is – should the preamble just address anti-discrimination, or should it be expanded…