The Press Newspaper

Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

It promises to be the best of times, and the “wurst” of times.

The 45th German-American Festival will be held Aug. 27 to 29 at Oak Shade Grove, 3624 Seaman Rd., Oregon, just a half mile east of Coy Road.

The festival was originally organized to promote and enhance German and Swiss cultures and to generate revenue to support the German and Swiss cultural center in Oregon as well as a wide variety of scholarship, athletic and other philanthropic programs in the area. Over the years, it has emerged as the oldest and largest ethnic festival in the Toledo area.

This year, festival organizers are planning for upward from 25,000 paid attendees, who are expected to consume some 660 smoked “Old World”-style frankfurters, 9,500 various bratwurst, 500 bratwurst patties, 5,000 smoked sausages and 500 Käsewurst (new in 2008). They’ll likely accompany them with about 275 gallons of sauerkraut, two tons of handmade German potato salad and 50,000 handmade potato pancakes, and wash it all down with some 650 barrels and cases of domestic and imported beers, 50 cases of German wines, 7,400 bottles of soda pop and 4,000 bottles of water.

Yum! But that’s only part of the festival’s appeal. Other festival highlights include:

• An opening ceremony with parade featuring colorful costumes and pageantry.

To commemorate 150 years of service to youth and elderly in northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan, Lutheran Homes Society (LHS) held a weekend of festivities Aug. 5-7.

The observance, which attracted more than 3,000 people, culminated with a Festival Celebration on Saturday.

The anniversary festivities began with the organization’s 150th Annual Meeting of Member Congregations on Aug. 5 at the Stranahan Theater and Great Hall. The event included dinner, special recognitions and remarks by judicatory, government and social ministry representatives, a business meeting and the annual report by LHS President/CEO David Roberts.

A worship service followed, featuring the inaugural presentation of the hymn “Gratitude,” which was commissioned in honor of the 150th Anniversary by the LHS Board of Directors and sung by the Zoar Lutheran Church Choir. The evening concluded with a presentation by Rev. Gerald Labuhn, Executive Director Emeritus and Archivist, who has served the Society in various capacities for more than 50 years.

Weekend festivities also included a celebration on the Society’s Lutheran Home at Toledo campus at the corner of Wheeling and Seaman Streets. A concert on the lawn Friday evening featured The Deutschmeister German Band, The Choraliers and the Commanders of Harmony. A reunion of “orphans” of the former Lutheran Orphans’ Home was held, with some of the former residents leading guided tours of the orphanage building that still stands at 2411 Seaman St.

Financal reporting awarded
Two public entities in Wood County have been recognized for their financial reporting.

The Northwestern Water and Sewer District has received the “Making Your Tax Dollars Count” award for the district’s fiscal year 2009 audit.

The award, presented by the Auditor of State’s office, requires recipients to submit a comprehensive annual financial report that includes no findings or other issues. There must also be no other financial concerns involving the entity.

A Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting has been awarded to the Eastwood Local School District by the Government Finance Officers Association of the U.S. and Canada for the district’s annual financial report.

The award was presented to Dave Michel, district treasurer.


Levy meeting
A meeting for residents who want to assist with the levy campaign for the Harris-Elmore Public Library will be Aug. 26 at 7 p.m. at the Genoa Christian Church, 415 Main Street, Genoa.

A 1.1-mill, 5-year operating levy will be on the November ballot.

The Genoa library is a branch of the Harris-Elmore Library.

A second forum to acquaint students and parents with the building that will temporarily house Lake High School is scheduled for Aug. 24.

The building, being leased to the Lake district by Owens Community College, will be open at 6:30 p.m. for the public to view. The forum will start at 7 p.m.

Lake staff members refer to the building, located at 2249 Tracy Rd., as “The Hangar.”

“We’re definitely behind the eight ball,” said Jodi Takats, Lake’s curriculum director. “But we’re working as hard as we can to get everything ready. Temporary walls are currently up and just about finished. It seems to be going well.”

The district’s high school building at the corner of Lemoyne Road and State Route 795 was destroyed in a June 5 tornado.

School fees were being collected last week at the Tracy Road building, Takats said, adding it was the first time some students had been in the building while others have been assisting with the preparations.

Lake Superintendent Jim Witt welcomed those attending the first forum held last Tuesday at the middle school media center.

“Our goal is to try to make our students feel comfortable and to relieve anxieties as they relate to changes in our school routine,” he said.

Oregon City Council is reviewing a proposed ordinance that would allow the city to manage its right-of-way by permitting reasonable access, conserve capacity and ensure the rights-of-way are protected.

City Law Director Paul Goldberg at a committee of the whole meeting last month said the city has been discussing ways to protect the rights-of-way for a long time.

“We had thought some time ago that it was appropriate, and the state legislature is giving the city the authority to control our own rights-of-ways,” he said. “We started working on this thing a year-and-a-half ago. This is a lengthy ordinance. We did look at it internally three or four times and made a number of changes. We invited all the utility companies that have utilities in our city rights-of-way to several meetings. We got their comments. We didn’t want to make it too onerous on them, so we did make some substantial changes to try and fit in with what they thought was appropriate but still protects the city’s interest.”

Goldberg suggested that the ordinance should be discussed further and that it get three readings.

“The main thing is to ensure our rights-of-way are protected. Anyone who is going to occupy our rights-of-way are going to have to have a permit, and give us all sorts of information,” said Goldberg, adding that Public Service Director Paul Roman needs such information to protect the city’s water and sewer lines in the rights-of-way.

Bill Cosby

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