The superintendent of Metroparks and the president of the Ohio Wetlands Foundation will speak Feb. 3 at an open meeting of the Friends of Pearson. The meeting will begin at 7 p.m. in Macomber Lodge in Pearson Park.
Dave Zenk, who oversees operations for the Metroparks system, including Pearson, will talk about upcoming projects at the park, including a new trail at Pearson North, the 300-acre addition to the Oregon Metropark that was dedicated in August.
Vince Messerley will discuss the Ohio Wetlands Foundation’s work at Pearson North, which is being restored by the foundation to its natural state as a swamp woods and open wetland.
Friends of Pearson meetings are open to the public. Macomber lodge is on Navarre Avenue (SR 2), between Lallendorf and Wynn roads. The lodge has a separate entrance and is not accessible from inside the park.
With a double-digit enrollment increase this spring, Terra Community College has posted a record number of students for the third consecutive term.
There are 26.8 percent more students attending classes this spring than last year and 34.3 percent more Full Time Equivalency as compared to 2009.
Headcount this spring is 3,326 compared to 2,622 in 2009 and 2,454 in 2008. FTE is at 1,041 this year compared to 775.2 in 2009 and 712 in 2008.
Enrollment is measured both in the actual number of students on campus as well as FTE, which is the total number of credit hours for all students registered by the census day divided by 30 credits for campuses on a semester system and 45 credits for those on a quarter system. Ohio public colleges receive funding from the state based on annual FTE.
TARPS sees growth
The Toledo Area Regional Paratransit Service, TARPS, is the nation’s second fastest growing transit service specifically for persons with disabilities and the fastest growing such service in Ohio. Plans and activities in place will advance this heavily used service even more.
“TARPS’ rate of growth is indicative of the service improvements the Toledo Area Regional Transit Authority (TARTA) has brought to TARPS,” said James K. Gee, TARTA’s general manager. “When we assumed full control in fall 2008, we told TARPS riders and the public to expect improved service and accountability, a seamless changeover from the previous service provider and changes and upgrades in the future.”
Noteworthy highlights include:
• TARPS ridership for 2009 set a record for the 13th consecutive year. Ridership was 182,994, up 34.1 percent from 2008’s 136,446.
• A goal of improved service has resulted in a practice, now in its second winter, of providing all TARPS passengers with assistance from the outermost door at the pickup point to the bus, as well as providing similar assistance from the bus to the outermost door at the passenger’s destination. The door-to-door service typically is available from mid-November through mid-March.
Planned improvements include a new building, scheduling software improvements and a state-of-the-art passenger notification system.
“We plan to seek bids this spring on a new TARPS facility,” Gee said. “If things work according to schedule, the new facility should be finished in 2011.” The 80,000 square-foot facility will be built largely with federal funds and will be located on a 5.9 acre site in south Toledo. The facility will be built near Toledo’s Martin Luther King Jr. Plaza. The TARPS site is housed at the Page Dairy.
The scheduling software, scheduled for this year, will help riders schedule non-emergency trips more closely to the time they are needed, instead of several days in advance.
The passenger notification system has been undergoing testing since December and should be operational in March. It allows passengers to confirm or cancel trips 24 hours a day; will call riders the night before a planned trip to remind them; and will call passengers when their bus arrives at the pickup point to let them know they can board.
Giving kids a smile
Owens Community College’s Dental Hygiene program, in collaboration with the Toledo Dental Society, will be offering a day of free dental services for at-risk children ages 6 months to 18 Feb. 5 from 8 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4 p.m. at the College’s Dental Hygiene Clinic. The clinic is located in Health Technologies Hall on the Toledo-area Campus. Additionally, Toledo Dental Society dentists and Expanded Functions Dental Auxiliary will provide restorative treatments such as fillings and extractions for patients Feb. 12 from 1 to 4 p.m.
Give Kids A Smile Day is a national initiative by the American Dental Association, which is dedicated to focusing attention on the epidemic of untreated oral disease among disadvantaged children. Held each February in conjunction with National Children’s Dental Health Month, Give Kids A Smile Day provides free oral health education, screening and treatment services to children from low-income families across the country.
Dental Hygiene students receive classroom instruction as well as hands-on experience in the Dental Hygiene Clinic, while preparing to sit for the national, state or regional exam in dental hygiene. The program also offers dental services to area residents through its Dental Hygiene Clinic. The 20-chair clinic is staffed by dental hygiene students supervised by licensed dental professionals at Owens. Appointments are available during the fall and spring semesters for a $25 fee. Call 567-661-7294 or 1-800-GO-OWENS, ext. 7294 for more information.
Ottawa County Prosecuting Attorney Mark Mulligan reports that after a recent session of the Ottawa County Grand Jury, indictments have been returned against the following:
• Zachary W. Porter, 19, of Oak Harbor, has been indicted on two counts of rape, both felonies of the first degree, along with three misdemeanor counts of furnishing alcohol to underage persons. According to the Ottawa County Sheriff’s reports, Porter allegedly forced an intoxicated woman to engage in sexual conduct with him at a Benton Township home in September of last year.
• Tiffany M. Sharp, 22, of Oak Harbor, has been indicted on two counts of theft and one count of forgery, all felonies of the fifth degree. Sharp is accused of using a stolen credit card to make purchases at numerous locations in September and October of last year.
• Donald R. Lewis, Jr., 29, and Shanan Conklin, also 29, were each indicted on one count of failure to appear, a felony of the fourth degree. Lewis, who is currently being held in the Wood County Detention Facility, and Conklin, whose last known address is Watertown, N.Y., both failed to attend hearings on unrelated criminal cases earlier this month.
• Travis J. Ottney, 25, of Elmore, was charged with one count of felonious assault, a felony of the second degree, after he was allegedly involved in an altercation at an Elmore bar last November during which the victim sustained serious injuries.
A summons has been issued for Sharp to make her initial appearance in the Ottawa County Court of Common Pleas on Feb. 26. Warrants have been issued for all other defendants.
Mulligan noted that an indictment is merely a formal charge in the Common Pleas Court and does not denote guilt or innocence.
All area women are invited to a “Sweet Hearts” luncheon and program Feb. 11 at the Bayside Boardwalk, 2759 Seaman St., Oregon, sponsored by Toledo East Women’s Connection.
Doors will open at 11:45 a.m. for the noon luncheon and program.
Marianne Pirolli, of Northwood, will discuss how to make “sweet” cookies. Liz Walbom, of Perrysburg; will provide vocal entertainment and Sandi Lemmon, of Toledo, will share her sweet story of “Confessions of a Workaholic.”
For reservations, call Dorethy at 419-691-9611, Marilyn at 419-666-1633 or Diane at 419-260-0151.
Safe boating course
“America’s Boating Course,” which offers information and skills for the recreational boater, will be held for five consecutive Monday evenings from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at Clay Highs School in Oregon beginning Feb. 22.
The course will be taught by Toledo Sail & Power Squadron boaters. The course fee is $45, and $25 for a second family member sharing a manual.
For more information, call Larry Cole at 734-755-7252.