Minutes of the Avon Historical Society, 4-6-05

President Jack Smith opened the April 6, 2005, meeting of the Avon Historical Society at 7:00 p.m. at The Old Town Hall with 37 members and guests present.

As the first order of business he asked the secretary to read the minutes of the previous meeting of March 2, 2005. Following the reading of the minutes the president asked if there were any additions or corrections to the minutes as read. There being none, a motion to approve the minutes was made by George Bliss, seconded by Ruth Plas, and by voice vote unanimously approved.

Jack, noting that our treasurer Barb Wolf was not present this evening, dispensed with the treasurer's report.

Jack then brought up the issue of this year's Duct Tape Festival and called upon Toni Barnhardt to bring us up to date on the project. Toni stated that she and Theresa Szippl have decided that we would construct a replica of The Old Town Hall out of heavy cardboard and then cover it with duct tape. By being entered in the parade and paying our $25.00 entrance fee we will receive 5 cases of duct tape to decorate our float with.

Toni stated to the members present that they are looking for volunteers to help decorate the float; and Bob Gates, Ralph White and Jack Smith volunteered. If anyone else is interested in helping please see her or Theresa after the meeting.

George Bliss stated that he should know shortly if he is "booked" again this year to drive his tractor pulling a float in the parade. If he is not contacted, he will be available to us. Karen Conant stated that she has a hay wagon available if we should need it. Toni thanked her and said we indeed needed a hay wagon, but then the next problem is where to store it while we are working on the decorating. Karen said she also has a barn if we get desperate. Also we need somewhere to store the large cardboard that Ralph has acquired for this project. See Toni [934-4282] or Theresa [934-5933] if you can help with this project.

Next the president introduced Michelle Braunscheidel from the French Creek Development Association representing the Arcadia Picture Book project. She wanted to thank everyone for their contributions of photographs for the book and said they had some wonderful photos to choose from. Presently they are in the process of re-scanning some pictures. The cover photograph has been chosen and she passed around a copy of the photo chosen. Finally it is estimated that the process will take another 4 to 6 months, and the books will be ready for sale in the fall in time for Christmas gifts.

The President then reported to the members present that Nancy had brought to his attention the fact that our local WalMart Store has grant money available to the communities that they serve, and that perhaps we should make an application to obtain some of the funds. Jean Fischer offered to pick up the application, and Jack will complete the application and submit it for the club.

Next Bob Gates spoke regarding the Landmarks Preservation Commission and stated that recently 4 people wanted off of our landmarks list. Removing the old Long homestead on Long Road was denied, and rumor has it that the Board of Education will be requesting that the old Avon High School [now the Village School] located on Detroit Road be taken off. Of course that would open the door to have it torn down, and that request will be denied. Bob also displayed to the members a sample design of a plaque we would like the city to purchase to be displayed on the historic homes in town which will make a nice compliment to the homes.

The President then asked Ralph White if there was any report on the Detroit Road Ohio Scenic By-Way issue and Ralph reported that there was nothing new to report.

Next the president reported that at the last Planning Commission meeting held on March 16th the developers of the Williams House ran into a wall with the Planning Commission for several reasons:

1) there were not enough parking spaces in the stacking area for a drive-thru. They only allowed for 4; they needed 15. The back-up of traffic onto French Creek Road would present a clear and present danger.

2) They only provided for 40 parking spaces; they are required to have 78 spaces.

Jack further stated that he had talked with Dorrie Bommer and she informed him that Dr. Kelley and his group had not requested to be put on the April 20th or 27th agenda for the Planning Commission so they really have an opportunity to be at either of these meetings. However, at this point we can't say we want to attend either of these meetings if they are not necessary. An e-mail will be sent to everyone if something comes up and we need to show up for the meeting. Remember to speak to our representatives both elected and appointed that the people are concerned about maintaining Avon's small town atmosphere.

Moving on to new business the president wanted everyone to know that Stone Eagle Farm on Detroit Road, the former Williams homestead, is for sale. We have learned that Steve McQuillin would like to be considered as a potential purchaser of the house and barn for preservation.

A second person interested in the property is Dr. Shah who is with us this evening. Dr. Shah has attempted to gain entrance to the house and buildings but to no avail. The house is for sale by owner and the owner a Mr. Larson lives in Pennsylvania. It is through that the property includes a total of 10 acres which is enough for a small development, so we had better keep a close on what happens with the house.

Next the president reminded everyone of the upcoming Spring Fling to be held Saturday and Sunday, April 23rd and 24th. The Old town Hall will be open and we will have demonstrations in the hall along with showing our videos during the day.

Another date to mark on your calendars is Saturday, April 16th when there will be a judicial candidates night at 7:00 p.m. at City Hall. This would be a great chance to see and hear all the candidates and their positions.

Jack then announced that at our next meeting to be held on May 4, 2005 Betty Lou Higgins will present a program entitled, "Favorite Great Lakes Stories".

There being no further business to conduct, a motion to adjourn the meeting was made by Jim Szippl and seconded by Theresa Szipple and by voice vote unanimously approved.

Dr. Del Fischer then announced this evening's speaker, Al Doane, who presented a program about the Lorain Tornado of 1924.

Respectfully submitted, Nancy McGhee, Secretary



May 4, 2005

Reading of minutes of meeting of April 6, 2005. Motion to approve and second.

Treasurer's Report

A. Any outstanding bills to present.

III. Old Business

A. Report from the Landmarks Preservation Commission, Bob Gates

B. Norton S. Townshend video committee -- Walmart grant, Jean Fischer

C. Duct Tape Festival participation, Theresa Szippl, Toni Barnhart

D. Re-cap of Planning Commission meeting on the Williams House, Jack Smith

F. ________________________________________________

New Business

A. The Avon Historical Society will tour Cleveland's Lake View Cemetery on Sunday, 6-12-05

We have scheduled a walking tour that begins at 2 pm and ends at 3:30 pm. However there is an alternative.

What would you like to do? We will decide at the meeting on 5-4-05.


A typical walking tour is 1 hours and includes the Garfield Monument and Wade Chapel. Groups must have a minimum of 12 people and be prepared to walk for the entire tour. There is no cost for the tour - however donations to The Lake View Cemetery Foundation are appreciated.


Lake View's Legendary Personalities Sunday, June 12, 2005 2:00 p.m.

Looking for a different type of tour at Lake View Cemetery? Join Ralph Fotia in Wade Chapel as he verbally leads you through the cemetery, highlighting philanthropists, industrialists, sports figures and numerous others. This non-walking tour is 45 minutes in length. Maps will be provided to those interested in visiting individual burial sites. Reservations and a $4.00 fee, please.



Motion to Adjourn and Second

Jean Fischer, Program Chairman, will introduce Betty Lou Higgins who will present "Favorite Great Lakes Stories."


Ellen Young wrote:

I'm emailing the attached flyer to all clubs and civic organizations in Avon (that I'm aware of) in hopes of increasing participation in Pride Day in May. Will you please share this with all of the members of the Historical Society and anyone else you think might be interested?

Have a great day!! Ellen


In recent years, Avon has participated in Lorain County Pride Day by having City Park clean-ups and beautification projects, such as planting flowers. This year, we'd like to have Pride Days and really clean up our community. Please consider helping us with this project. We're looking for civic organizations, businesses, teachers with students, church groups, families, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, etc. [The official Pride Day is Saturday, 5-21-05.]

Where businesses are concerned, employees who volunteer to work could organize and participate during a work day so they wouldn't have to give up one of their weekend days and there would be a higher rate of participation. (Poly One Corporation has been participating in Avon Lake's Pride Day for years and their employees have really made a difference. For example, they've built and refurbished playgrounds and helped build Avon Lake's Skate Park.)

Volunteers could choose a section of roadway, a park, their own church, school, or a municipal building to clean, paint, plant, etc. All volunteers will be provided with trash bags. Dumpsters will be placed throughout the City and City employees will schedule times to come pick up your trash bags to take to the dumpsters. Signs will be placed where sections of road are to be cleaned and adult volunteers will be stationed to help alert traffic to the presence of the volunteers.

If you would like to help beautify our City, call Ellen Young at (440) 937-7821.

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