aroundKent Magazine Vol 12 2016

Page 1

New Music

At Kent State University

Carlos Jones

Music with a Message


Artists Master Line and Space

publisher/photographer Matt Keffer 330.221.1274

art director

content volume 12 2016 6 Carlos Jones; Music with a Message 12 Acorn Alley


Susan Mackle


Chuck Slonaker

contributing writers

Frank Bubnick Michelle Hartman Elliott Ingersoll Mark Keffer Jim and Maureen Kovach Patrick O’Connor Malavanh Rassavong Cheryl Townsend Frank Wiley Copyright 2016. All rights reserved. Reproduction or use of editorial or pictorial content of any manner is prohibited without written permission. aroundkent accepts no responsibility for solicited materials.

16 Visual Art Showcase 24 New Music at Kent State University 28 Little Free Libraries


32 University Hospitals


36 The Road Less Traveled


40 Intersections: Artists Master Line and Space

36 40

42 On Holiday 55 For the Love of Western Reserve PBS and the Arts

58 Local Music 63 Franklin Hotel Bar


Cover: Members of the KSU New Music Ensemble Photography by Matt Keffer



CARLOS JONES has been on stage performing his own brand of reggae music and entertaining audiences since the late 70s. First as a member of the legendary I-Tal, then with the equally legendary First Light, and finally starting his own musical vision The PLUS (Peace Love and Unity Syndicate) Band, he has been a stalwart of the Northeast Ohio music scene. Constantly pursuing his vision for performing music with a meaning to his audience, Carlos has done what many

musicians have failed to do. He has, through hard work and persistence, spent most of his adult life performing and spreading his own version of the reggae gospel as his sole occupation. I first became acquainted with Carlos through First Light in the early 90s. My future wife and I (we have been married for 23 years this October) spent many nights at places like The Empire in Cleveland (now a parking lot across from Progressive Field), The Daily Double

Written by Frank Bubnick

volume 12 | 2016 •


Carlos Jones

Music with a Message

in Akron (they had old x-rays hung on the windows to darken the room), The Chuckery at the University of Akron, as well as various rib and outdoor festivals enjoying our favorite local band. Fast forward to the early 2000s and I was contacted by Carlos’ manager Larry Koval about starting a web site for Carlos. I said, “No, I don’t think I’m qualified.” He said, “When can you be done?” and the rest is history. Check it out at

It’s that kind of support and loyalty from Carlos’ fans that have allowed him to continue to perform and entertain them. Just watching him for a short time, you can appreciate the stage is where he is meant to be. While “commercial” success may have eluded him over the years, that probably was not his main goal. His goal is to sing the songs that mean so much to so many people. If that’s reggae standards from Marley and others or performing his Continued on page 8


volume 12 | 2016 •

Continued from page 7 originals, you will not leave disappointed from any PLUS Band show. The make-up of the band and the crowd is a variety of ages, ways of life, and backgrounds. The music binds all of these people together. The music is what matters. It’s a testament to the quality of the performance and the messages behind the music. Since this is a Kent based publication, I asked Carlos for some of his reflections of Kent from over the years. See his comments below:

My Reflections of Kent — Carlos Jones My first awareness of Kent, Ohio unfortunately, came because of the shootings in 1970—I was 12 years old. I remember feeling the shock, disbelief and sadness surrounding the news of that event, and even though I had already lived through the assassinations of JFK, Bobby Kennedy, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King; as a kid, those events seemed remote and almost dreamlike, and I don’t think I could fully comprehend their magnitude. This hit me especially hard because it seemed to knock out of me any remaining childlike innocence I had, and reveal the hard truths of the adult world. These were our own people, not some foreign enemy. And they were students—these were people’s kids! I don’t want to make it sound like that is my only way of identifying Kent as a place, but again, it’s unfortunate that the name became inextricably linked with the tragedy, and I’m sure that its place in history is something the whole town and school have struggled to come to terms with. So Kent became this infamous and mythical place in my mind, where this profound tragedy had happened. It would be another eight years before I ever actually set foot in Kent. I had joined my first band in the summer of 1978, and we used to play a lot in a little off-campus bar called Mother’s (Junction). My first impression of Kent was that of a quaint and quiet little college town that seemed to have an atmosphere of laid back bohemian coolness, and was just a great place to hang out. I made many friends over the years playing there, and had lots of fun and some very profound experiences that added to my growth and development. There was a young woman that I had become acquainted with at Ohio University in Athens Ohio, who, as it turned out, had a very direct Kent connection. She was instrumental

volume 12 | 2016 •


in helping me to resolve some ongoing health issues I had been dealing with by introducing me to a more holistic way of living and maintaining my health, and the books she gave me were written by a holistic physician who had his practice in Kent. After going to see him, things really started to change for me (for the better). Also, I later came to find out that her husband had been one of the wounded in the shootings years earlier, which really shook me and made me feel more than a little strange. In my subsequent bands, I have continued to play in Kent at various places, on and off campus, and I’ve always loved coming back and seeing familiar faces, and it has always felt like a warm and welcoming place. Over the years, it has always been very important to me to try to be in Kent for the May 4th memorial gatherings, to commemorate not only the tragedy, but a pivotal point in my life, where I feel I “woke up” and crossed over into social consciousness. Even though I was not there that day in 1970, I have always felt sympathetic towards those who experienced it and have had to live with the aftereffects. And beyond that, it was very symbolic of the way those in power deal with those that dare to question and oppose that power and authority anywhere in the world. My music has always been influenced by those who went before me, who chose to use their voices to convey messages of truth, social justice and more harmonious human interaction. Many of the songs I have written deal with these kinds of things. Through participating in the memorials, I became very close with some of the people who were directly affected by May 4th. Because of that connection, it led me to write a song that helped me (and others) deal with long held, deeply embedded feelings about the incident. Being able to share that with family members and friends of those that were killed and wounded really helped me to process the pain and sadness that had always accompanied the memory, and even though not forgotten, I feel as if I could fully breathe again and find relief from the heaviness. I’d have to say,

Continued on page 10


volume 12 | 2016 •

Continued from page 9 that even though I did not technically go to school in Kent, I still feel like it is a place that has played largely in my growth and education. I must also mention that my youngest daughter went to Kent State, which has made me feel that connection even stronger. And what’s more, it’s a positive connection — one that has to do with life and moving forward. To this day, whenever I go there, it feels like a homecoming of sorts. It’s a song called Truth & Justice (Kent State). I wrote it in May of 2014 for the family of Alison Krause, who had asked if I could come and play for the May 4th commemoration that year. I was having health issues at the time and couldn’t make it, but I wanted to give them something from my heart, and this song came to me. I wrote and recorded it all in one afternoon and sent it to them. This is the first recording of the song that you can listen to at Sound Cloud. I have since added a new verse, so there will be an updated version soon. truth-justice-kent-state

Here are some of the accomplishments and honors that Carlos has received over the years: •C arlos was honored with a Tribute concert in November of 2015; one of three artists to be honored for their lifetime achievements (Alex Bevan and Michael Stanley being the other two) • S old out Holiday Revival Show (Dec 26) at the Music Box Supper Club • Was featured in an article in Al Jazeera (an international publication) • S tarted up the Positive Vibrations Fundraising Program for schools and non-profits in the fall of 2015. Several schools came on board selling Carlos’ private label brand of coffee, tea, and hot chocolate. Carlos also put together a Workshop/Clinic for students and did five to six performances during 2016 at area schools. •H ad the largest crowds ever at the Hessler Street Fair (5000) and Wade Oval (10,000). •O nce again, headlined the Midwest Reggae Fest at Clay’s Park. •R eceiving ongoing radio play on and 91.3 The Summit with his single, “The Cleveland Beat” and also “Apartment Living”.

• Going back in the studio to finish off a new version of his holiday song Christmas the Way it Used to Be as well as working on new tracks with the PLUS Band. He should have a new single and video out before Christmas, with a full CD to be released in the spring of 2017.

If you get a chance, experience Carlos for yourself. You will not be disappointed. His connection to his fans is undeniable. His

volume 12 | 2016 •


commitment to message music and his community is what separates him from others. I have enjoyed his music for many years and I am sure you will become a dedicated fan, given the opportunity. Here are some shows coming up soon. Do yourself a favor and experience it for yourself; you will not be disappointed.


Sat 3 Brothers Lounge Sat 10 Time Warp (Westlake) Sat 17 P.J. McIntures (West Park) Mon 26 Holiday Revival Show - Music Box (Cleveland Flats)

Written by Michelle Hartman

ACORN ALLEY Located in the heart of historic downtown Kent between East Main and Erie Streets, Acorn Alley is a pedestrian-friendly development that offers cobblestone walkways and a welcoming locally-owned mix of specialty shops and boutiques, art and live music, and special events throughout the year.

Fig Leaf

Twisted Meltz


138 E. Main St., #101 •

164B E. Main St. •

175 E. Erie St. #201•

Fig Leaf Boutique was the first retail shop to open in Acorn Alley in 2009 and specializes in bringing their customers the latest trends, catering to their lifestyle needs, all at an affordable price! Their clothing and accessories are young contemporary and junior styles and sizes, mostly manufactured in the LA garment district. With new arrivals every week, Figleaf is your one stop shop for all your fashion needs.

Who doesn’t like grilled cheese, right? Twisted Meltz serves grilled cheese with a twist, whether the twist is Korean barbecue, arugula, pesto, caramelized onions or fried potato and cheddar pierogis is for the customer to decide. There are 26 melt options, and they’re all named after Kent State-based celebrities. With numerous breads, cheeses, add-ons, and sauces, you are sure to find a favorite. Catering and delivery services are available. Plus, there’s plenty of seating in the adjacent indoor/outdoor patio.

Located in Acorn Alley II in Acorn Plaza, stop in for a unique popcorn experience! Using original recipes and real ingredients, they make popcorn to get excited about—including savory, sweet and vegan recipes. Popped! uses the best Ohio has to offer—like Ohio grown, non-GMO popcorn, local butter from Hartzler Family Dairy in Wooster, locally roasted nuts, locally roasted coffee and honey from their own backyard. Popped! also offers chocolates, homemade ice cream and freshly baked waffle cones, all made in house with the same philosophy of using local ingredients. Gift tins and shipping also available.

4 Cats Arts Studio 144 E. Main St. • 4Cats offers art classes, art history, art parties, art supplies and party planning for children and adults. Offering techniques in clay, painting, printmaking and a variety of other mediums, the sky is the limit! The 4 Cats staff believes whole-heartedly that art brings joy, a love of learning and makes the world a better place. “We are a team of happy artists who love what we do and create good art!”

Group Ten Gallery 201E E. Erie Street • Group Ten Gallery is a co-op of nine accomplished artists located across the street from the KSU Hotel & Conference Center on East Erie Street, featuring mediums such as oils, pastels, watercolors, and colored pencil. The artists on exhibition include Jeff Fauser, Judy Gaiser, Dan Lindner, Dino Massaroni, William Peck, Carol Tomasik, Eva Ellis, Carolyn Lewis, and Lawrence Walker. The array of work are endless, from subjects in nature, portraits of people, and abstract paintings to textiles and sculptures. With receptions free and open to the public, this is a great location to visit for excellent, original art.

Off the Wagon 152 E. Main St. • Off the Wagon specializes in gags, games, gifts, toys, and novelties for the young at heart. They feature a variety of novel gifts from toys you haven’t seen in years (Slinky, yo-yo, Spirograph, etc.), to the obscure toys you never imagined (Bigfoot action figure, yodeling pickles, bacon bandages). In the last few years, they have expanded their game section, expanded their kids toys, added comics and have lots more unusual … um … stuff. You just have to stop in to see it!

Continued on page 14


volume 12 | 2016 •

Continued from page 13 Pita Pit 154B E. Main St. • Pita Pit offers a fun, casual dining atmosphere where customers can create their perfect pita amongst their endless flavor combinations of meats, veggies, toppings and spreads. Made to order, fresh and fast, Pita Pit is a great option for lunch, dinner or for catering your next party! They also offer delivery and late night hours! Pita Pit is fresh thinking, healthy eating!

Tree City Coffee 135 E. Erie St. #101 • Tree City Coffee & Pastry is proud to bring Kent the best in coffee, pastry and atmosphere. They offer a selection of the world’s finest coffee and tea products, a classic peanut butter and jelly menu, breakfast sandwiches, fresh baked pastries, desserts and more. They also offer a beer, wine and cocktail menu. A terrific place to stop by offering a stay put atmosphere or the convenience of a drive-thru.

Laziza Mediterranean Restaurant 195 E. Erie St. • Laziza is the place where Mediterranean cuisine is redefined, where exciting, exquisite and extraordinary gather every day to deliver an original dining experience. Laziza offers Greek and Mediterranean options, steaks, seafood, burgers and vegetarian specialties, as well as a full bar. If you’re planning a party, a special event, or a small get together, we invite you to indulge your senses and get a taste of Kent’s Laziza Restaurant.

Buffalo Wild Wings 176 E. Main St. • Known for these three things: Wings. Beer. Sports. “Making fans happy” is the motto at Buffalo Wild Wings. Situated in the old Franklin Hotel, “B-Dubs” is the ultimate place to get together with your friends, watch all the games (on a massive screen), grab a cold one and enjoy some award winning Buffalo, New York-style wings or other eats on their extensive menu.

Standing Rock Jewelers

164D E. Main St. • The Dragonfly has been serving Northeast Ohio since 1990, specializing in custom and contract embroidery while offering fast service and competitive pricing. There is no order too large or too small and quantity pricing is available. The Dragonfly can embroider your company logo, or you may choose from their wide selection of stock letters and designs. Superior customer service is the hallmark to The Dragonfly, and they are committed to your success.

164A E. Main St. •

Destination Kent Visitor Centre

Don’t settle for ordinary! From engagement rings to fashionable fine jewelry in classic to contemporary styles, Standing Rock Jewelers will have what you’re looking for to hit all the right notes, sentiment and substance. Standing Rock Jewelers also features an impressive collection of gemstones, a beautiful selection of luxury watches, exclusive collections from international designers, custom engraving and jewelry repair.

201A E. Erie St. •

Rise & Shine Café 135 E. Erie St. #102 • Rise & Shine Café is committed to serving delicious, made-to-order breakfast and lunch options using only the freshest ingredients, and local and organic products, whenever possible. From breakfast scramblers and their signature Black Squirrel Nutty Waffle to specialty sandwiches, salads and homemade soups, this place is a favorite for Kent State students, visitors and townies alike. They also host private parties, and offer catering and boxed lunches.

volume 12 | 2016 •

The Dragonfly


Planning a visit to Kent? Be sure to stop by the new Destination Kent Visitor Centre open daily, located across the street from the Kent State University Hotel & Conference Center for maps, brochures, list of events, menus, area highlights and attractions. With our resident squirrels, “Earl and Pearl” there to greet you with a smile and a scrolling slide show highlighting our area, come discover uncommon, unmistakable Kent and experience the flavors, people, sights, sounds and traditions found only in Kent.

Flashers Cleaners 154E E. Main St. With more than 25 years of experience, Flashers Cleaners strives to provide every customer with fast, friendly and personalized service. Flashers is a full service dry cleaning business specializing in gentle treatment of your garments and an extraordinary commitment to quality and customer service. They handle everything from sensitive fabrics to shirt laundry to bedding and offer repairs and alterations.

Belleria Pizza & Italian Restaurant

Dr. V & G’s Sauce Shack

135 E. Erie St., Suite 202 •

154D E. Main Street •

Belleria Pizza & Italian Restaurant offers its customers delicious pizzas, Italian specialties, and family recipes. Belleria features a variety of pizzas made with fresh dough and a family recipe pizza sauce, in addition to salads, pastas, sandwiches and wings. Belleria prides itself on consistency and tradition and serves this up in a comfortable, family friendly atmosphere. Dine in, pick up, catering and delivery available. Buon appetito!

This unique, fun and festive store sits in the middle of Acorn Alley with 45 feet of wall space dedicated to hot sauces! They specialize in hot sauces, barbeque sauces, wing sauces and spicy jellies. With hot sauces from all over the world, this place is not for the timid palette!

Silver & Scents 154C E. Main Street

Red Letter Days 138 Burbick Way • redletterdaykent/about/ Red Letter Days is the store for writers, readers, artists and gift givers. The creative mind will enjoy finding gifts for those they love, as well as themselves. As a bit of an oblique expansion out of Off the Wagon Shop, Red Letter Days carries fun things for your office, artistic tools, quality pens and stationary, gift books, gift wrapping supplies and more.

Kent Central Gateway Footwear 201C E. Erie St. • Located on East Erie Street, across from the Kent State University Hotel & Conference Center, the KCGF covers a wide demographic of footwear consumers. They specialize in Lifestyle Casual Footwear, Dress Shoes, Athletic Shoes, and many more. At Kent Central Gateway Footwear, the focus is on comfort, quality and service. Offering well-crafted brands such as Dansko, Toms, Merrell & Keen, just to name a few. Open seven days a week, you’re sure to find something to fit your needs.

Jasons’ Barber Shop 135 E. Erie St., Suite 201 • Jasons-Barber-Shop/152376421441248

Fashion School Store 201B E. Erie St. •

Remember the old time barbershop that dad took you to when you were a kid? That’s what you’ll find at Jasons’ Barber Shop. Whether you want a razor fade, a high and tight or just a traditional cut, Jasons’ Barber Shop is the place for great haircuts and great prices! Jasons’ has been in downtown Kent for more than a decade, and recently expanded to offer 6 barbers and online appointments. Hands down, this is the best barber shop in town for an old fashioned feel with a modern twist!

Silver & Scents specializes in indigenous Peruvian art, textiles and alpaca, silver jewelry with natural stones, loose rocks and stones, aromas and scented oils, and glass crystals and prisms. Silver & Scents has a great selection of alpaca apparel to choose from, including socks, scarfs and sweaters that will be certain to keep you warm during the cold Ohio winters.

Kent Cheesemonger 155 E. Erie St., Suite 201 • Located in Acorn Alley II in Acorn Plaza, Kent Cheesemonger is a specialty shop offering artisan cheese and all the cheese pairings such as wine, beer, crackers, dips, sauces, cured meats, olives, and more. They will cut and wrap your selection for you or you can choose from their precut selection from over 50 Artisan Cheeses from around the world! They also offer classes, cheese trays and gift baskets, and can host intimate private events!

Define your style at the Fashion School Store featuring original clothing and jewelry designs crafted by Kent State University Fashion School students, alums and faculty, as well as other dynamic and trendy clothing, jewelry and accessories. The Fashion School store is passionate about fashion with its visually stimulating boutique environment and first rate customer service. Make it your go-to fashion destination!


volume 12 | 2016 •

Visual Art


A direction that a number of contemporary artists explore is a kind of expressive figuration. This is work that functions in the wide area between pure abstraction and naturalistic representation. With skill and inventiveness, artists mining this territory can produce work of various personal intentions and meanings. The results, as evidenced here, can address a wide array of issues including memory, imagination, sociopolitical realities and perception in general, among others. The emotional tenor can be quite nuanced and may include the humorous and irreverent, urgent and questioning or introspective and melancholy, often in unexpected combinations.

Mark Keffer KSU Class of ‘88

We are honored to include an essay on Dexter Davis by William Busta, a long-time promotor of the arts. As a gallery owner, writer and curator, Mr. Busta’s contribution to the art and culture of northeast Ohio is immeasurable.



The open-ended narratives created in Amber Kempthorn’s labor-intensive drawings are highly reflective of the world in which they are made. Images of the natural environment are combined with numerous aspects of popular and consumer culture. An oddly harmonious balance is struck that seems to teeter on the edge of cacophony. These works say a great deal about who we are as a society and are created in a way that seems both loving and critical. How do we reconcile the throw-away quality of much of our culture with a future that is threatened by it? The deeply appealing esthetic side of her work offers a genuine prospect for optimism. Beauty itself seems an important element in the face of complex realities. Kempthorn describes her work in illuminating terms, especially her attraction to the notion of the liminal: an intermediate between two states or conditions; the transitional or indeterminate:

volume 12 | 2016 •

Unwinding spray paint, pastel, graphite, ink, gouache and collage, 60 x 44”, 2016


The drawings are culled from mental scraps of actual events, memories, observations, books, stories and songs. They invite the viewer to consider our shifting relationship to our history, culture and our surroundings. Over the course of time, what does our changing perception of an American mythology look like? And how does the persistence of change affect the images we hold onto in the face of so much impermanence? Each drawing contains a series of vignettes, which come together to communicate passages of a larger story. …The regular representation of sea and sky reflect my interest in liminality, not just in the way that a sunrise or sunset is liminal, but also the liminal way our thoughts and memories transition to and from one another. Because memory itself creates a strange hierarchy, the arrangement of space and the primary and attendant imagery in each drawing follows the rules of that hierarchy. The way we remember some things over others is not logical; it

Lost, I said spray paint, pastel, graphite, ink, charcoal and gouache, 30 x 22”, 2016

is mysterious. …I consider myself a storyteller, playfully and thoughtfully reflecting the minutiae and melancholy in life. Amber Kempthorn currently resides in Hiram, Ohio. She studied at Hiram College; the Maryland Institute College of Art and Cranbrook Academy of Art, where she received an MFA in 2008. Her work has been seen in numerous exhibitions in the area, as well as in Boston; Detroit; Burlington, Vermont and Gainesville, Florida. This year, she showed at Bonfoey Gallery, Cleveland; Youngstown State University; in the Cleveland Institute of Art Faculty Show and in a solo show at Kent State University, Trumbull. She was recently covered in a feature article in Canvas Magazine and is in the collections of Fidelity Investments, The Cleveland Clinic and The Cleveland Art Association. Duke spray paint, pastel, graphite, gouache and collage, 45 x 23”, 2016


volume 12 | 2016 •

Visual Art


D E X T E R The following is an essay by William Busta that accompanied the inaugural exhibition at the Kent State University Center for the Visual Arts Gallery, a solo show of the work of Dexter Davis. Dexter Davis: A Portrait Always his eyes. Eyes that are penetrating; eyes that are spooky; eyes that are kind; eyes that are smiling; eyes that are frightened. Eyes that are on the outside, looking in. Eyes that are on the inside, looking out. In works of art, eyes often


connect sitter to artist; artists to audience; audience to sitter. In the works of Dexter Davis, we sometimes find it is him looking at us, and then, sometimes someone else. But they are always his eyes. And his hands. Artists see their hands, watch their hands, direct their hands when they are working. The hands hold a brush and paint. The hands hold charcoal and draw. They arrange. They rearrange. From before the ice-age cave of Europe, hands have been the most elemental matrix in the making of art. We find the imprint of fingertips in the oldest pottery. In Dexter Davis’

works, we see his hands traced in outline, then drawn in; we see their image cut in relief in wood, then printed, then torn; we see where he has inked his hand and pressed it on paper, printmaking with his body; we see his hands printed from a scan, then painted, collaged. We see his hands clenched, reaching, welcoming, and imitating the shape of a gun. And then there are the tongues, and then, more recently, the teeth. And then there are the faces that hold everything together—the flesh and the spirit all in one, together, separate, edgy, aware, cautious, watching, nervous. The work of Dexter Davis first came to notice in Cleveland’s art community in Cleveland X, an exhibition at SPACES in 1993 that identified young, emerging artists. He was born and grew up in Cleveland, graduating from West Technical High School in 1994 (where he studied with William Martin Jean) and then the Cleveland Institute of Art (BFA 1990). He has lived almost all of his life in the inner-city Hough neighborhood of Cleveland, or in other places on the periphery of University Circle. Since 1994 he has worked at the Cleveland Museum of Art.

Installation View, Center for the Visual Arts Gallery, KSU

volume 12 | 2016 •


artists who he lists are Philip Guston, Willem de Kooning, Jean Basquiat and Pablo Picasso. There is also something of H.C. Cassill, his printmaking teacher at Cleveland Institute of Art and, through him, something of Cassill’s mentor, Mauricio Lasanksy—and then, again, through both of them, something more of Picasso. The works delight, mostly because you can feel Dexter Davis’ smile within even when difficult or even horrific. It is a complicated smile, which acknowledges its formal intellectual foundation; which is wary of unexpected perils; and which is genuinely affectionate. — William Busta, 2016

The Devil and Mr. Hyde relief print, acrylic, pastel, collage on paper, 50 x 39”, 1999

The art of Dexter Davis creates a fabric of his own, imbedded in association with the people that he knows, in the environment in which he has lived. In his art are bits and pieces of urban debris; drawings, painting and prints of friends and teachers; and woodcuts created to be printed, then deconstructed. He assembles and pastes into composition that’s so tight that at times it exerts a magnetic pull, drawing you close to untangle. All of the parts of his collage have meaning and memory, radiant with sympathetic magic. There’s an important contrast in his work. It has the grit and grime of a life in poor neighborhoods and it has the luster and polish of contemporary culture. Influences are complicated—among the

Mental Circus collage, watercolor, relief prints, mixed media, 29.5 x 22”, 2010


volume 12 | 2016 •

Visual Art




To comment on the work of Douglas Utter is a complicated task, in part because Utter himself is among the very most eloquent, knowledgeable and committed art writers in our region, but also because his work is of a nature that often transcends language. The experience of his paintings is a highly emotional one, but one that also prompts thinking. Meaning is a nuanced and multifaceted presence in his work, a response from deep within, and a vital interplay between viewer and artist. The subjects depicted—in highly inventive ways that place great importance on materials—suggest issues of interpersonal relationships and individual identity. They emphasize the fragmentary nature of memory and the fundamental human impulses of hope and desire. The unexpected way that other various creatures enter his images, often as part of human bodies, creates a fascinating open-ended narrative the seems rife with symbolism. Specific resolution of these connections is left to the mind of the viewer. A deeper reflection on this work comes from the artist: Altogether, I’m trying to build a bridge of thoughts, feelings, and portraits from my life as I now live and understand it, back to the mind of childhood and to my earliest interests. …If my work has a central theme, it is probably the mystery of human identity, exchanged between persons or clutched close to the bone. In one way

volume 12 | 2016 •

Extended Family mixed paint and drawing media on canvas, 75 x 67”, 2013


Akron, Kent State University and the Cleveland Institute of Art. He has had forty solo exhibitions of his work in Cleveland, New York, Phoenix and Germany, as well as numerous group shows. He received the Best Painting Award at the Cleveland Museum of Art May Show in 1987 and has received Ohio Arts Council Grants for both his art and criticism. He has published hundreds of reviews, articles and essays in numerous local and national publications. In 2011, Utter received the Creative Workforce Fellowship from Cuyahoga Arts and Culture and in 2013 was awarded the Cleveland Arts Prize, Lifetime Achievement Award.

Childhood Migraine latex paint, black pastel and shellac on canvas, 28 x 24”, 2015

and another, I’ve always tried to use painting to remember, and to reimagine, who I am and how I am in the world. Our lives are measured by our bodies, by our experiences, by our shadows. Paintings are another measurement that some people make, by pushing materials around, however delicately or sloppily. Whatever the subject of my work, I’m also showing my hands and my hips and my shoulders clothed with the limits of my years, and my care or the loneliness I feel, as I push and move against and into the shift of things. I look for myself everywhere. Douglas Utter was born in Cleveland, Ohio. He studied at Case Western Reserve University and has taught at the University of

Demeter in Winter mixed paint and drawing media on canvas, 31.5 x 30”, 2011


volume 12 | 2016 •

The Kent State University New Music Ensemble with guest composer Tracy Mortimore

At Kent State University Frank Wiley

NEW MUSIC IS ALIVE AND WELL IN KENT, OHIO! When many people think of “classical” music, they think about such composers as Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Tchaikovsky and Brahms. These were certainly great artists who made an extraordinary contribution to our civilization. But the tradition of which they were a part, the creation of music as art, has continued until now and will surely continue long into the future. Today, there is a truly amazing amount of activity in contemporary music. Gifted composers are creating fascinating new works, and brilliant performers are presenting these new works to a growing audience, eager to experience new sounds and new musical ideas. The Hugh A. Glauser School of Music at Kent State University presents many concerts incorporating new music each year. Students, members of the faculty, and many of the ensembles, including the Orchestra, directed by Katherine Kilburn; the Wind Ensemble, directed by Jesse Leyva; and the Chorale, directed by Scott MacPherson, perform music by living composers on a regular basis.

volume 12 | 2016 •


Ensemble ortimore

New music is the main focus of two series presented by the School of Music—the Kent State University New Music Series and the Vanguard New Music Guest Artists Series. The New Music Series features performances by the KSU New Music Ensemble, with visiting artists and faculty guest artists. The Vanguard Series features concerts by outstanding guest soloists and ensembles from throughout the United States and abroad, who are specialists in the performance of new music. The New Music Ensemble is a student ensemble made up of undergraduate and graduate students. The mission of the Ensemble is to study and present in live performances a wide range of music from the late 20th and 21st centuries, with an emphasis on music by living composers. The Ensemble has presented numerous world premieres. In addition to concerts on the KSU campus, the New Music Ensemble presents outreach concerts in traditional and non-traditional venues in northeast Ohio, including 78th Street Studios in Cleveland and Last Exit Books in downtown Kent. When I first came to Kent State University in 1979, there was a great deal of interest in new music, especially in the establishment of an ensemble dedicated to the performance of new music. I founded the KSU New Music Ensemble during my first year on the faculty, and I have continued to serve as its Director, or in recent years Co-Director. A few years ago, Anthony Donofrio, a composer and KSU alumnus who was a member of the faculty here at the time, joined me as Co-Director of the Ensemble. Tony is currently on the faculty at the University of Nebraska at Kearney. I am especially glad that Dr. Noa Even, our professor of saxophone, is co-directing the New Music Ensemble with me this year. Noa

is an amazing musician and teacher, a true champion of new music, and a powerful force in the realm of contemporary music performance. In addition to her active career as a soloist, she performs regularly with two duos, her saxophone duo Ogni Suono, with Phil Pierick, and her saxophone and drum set duo Patchwork, with percussionist Stephen Klunk. In 2014 Ogni Suono released their album Invisible Seams, including premier recordings of six compositions written for them. They are currently pursuing a project called SaxoVoce, for which they are commissioning new works that incorporate the use of the human voice in various ways. They have received a grant from New Music USA, as well as funding through Kickstarter, for the project.

invaluable. Students often leave with many questions, a new interest in digging deeper into the possibilities of their own instrument, open ears, and an open mind. This season, the four-concert New Music Series will include one concert of music by guest composer Marilyn Shrude, a member of the faculty at Bowling Green State University, whose music will also be performed by KSU Choirs and the KSU Orchestra, and one concert of music by world-renowned composer and KSU alumnus Donald Erb, including a performance by the KSU Wind Ensemble. In the fall of 2015 and the fall of 2016, the College of the Arts sponsored two significant Continued on page 26

While I bring to the New Music Ensemble and our New Music Series the perspective of a composer and conductor, Noa brings the perspective of an outstanding performer and active new music specialist. We are all very fortunate to have Noa Even in our new music program. The Vanguard New Music Guest Artists Series was founded in the spring of 2014. Since that time we have had a very impressive range of outstanding musicians, all of whom are new music specialists, come to Kent to present public concerts, as well as workshops for student composers and performers. Several of the performers on the series have been KSU alumni, and others have performed works by KSU alumni composers. Noa Even writes: It’s invigorating for the students to have new music experts on campus for performances, presentations, and master classes throughout the year. For many of them, the Vanguard Series is their first experience hearing contemporary repertoire live. While the music may challenge them in new ways, the opportunity to interact with guest performers and composers is


Frank Wiley and Noa Even, Co-Directors of the KSU New Music Ensemble

volume 12 | 2016 •

Continued from page 25 residencies including music by living composers through the Thomas Schroth Visiting Artist Series. Last fall, we hosted the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), a prize-winning collective of outstanding young musicians who specialize in the performance of contemporary music. ICE has been called “America’s foremost new-music group” by Alex Ross of The New Yorker. In addition to presenting an extraordinary concert of new works, including one piece in which they were joined by the KSU New Music Ensemble, the members of ICE gave several workshops for KSU students during their residency. This fall, the legendary Martha Graham Dance Company presented a full performance on campus. Their program included Act II of Martha Graham’s seminal work Clytemnestra, with music by KSU Emeritus Professor Halim El-Dabh, who is celebrating his 95th birthday this year and who attended the performance.

Violinist Jameson Cooper, KSU alumnus

volume 12 | 2016 •

About the Thomas Schroth Visiting Artists Series, our Dean, John Crawford-Spinelli, writes: The Thomas Schroth Visiting Artist Series allows the College of the Arts at Kent State to bring in superb guest artists in music and other arts. In the performing arts, we have hosted pianist Arnaldo Cohen, composer Stephen Schwartz, the International Contemporary Ensemble and both the Limón Dance Company and the Martha Graham Dance Company, just to name a few. We are so grateful to Cecile (Cil) Draime and her late husband Max for their vision and generosity in establishing this series. Last year, there were two substantial collaboration projects involving student composers. The first was a collaboration between the composition students and the saxophone students, culminating in performances on campus and at 78th Street Studios. Noa Even writes: Collaboration is a uniquely exciting process through which musicians learn to solve problems creatively. It is also an opportunity to produce something communal, yet personal. The saxophone and composition collaboration project Frank Wiley and I facilitated last year yielded phenomenal results. Students teamed up over the course of several months to compose, revise, and premiere new works. The quality of the music written over the course of the year was quite high and the saxophonists truly got to know these pieces, which were written specifically for them. It was a valuable experience for everyone involved and will hopefully lead students to initiate future collaborative projects as they continue to explore new music. The second was the Singing Verse project, which was funded by a Catalyst Grant from the College of the Arts. The student composers collaborated with poets from KSU’s Wick Poetry Center (David Hassler, Director), singers and instrumentalists from the School of Music, and


students from the Fashion School, culminating in a performance on campus and a documentary video. Project leader Gerrey Noh writes: Over the years, I have discovered that music students are most engaged in learning when they see the importance of connecting their knowledge to experiences. I also have learned that their engaged learning produces the most successful results when it is practiced through diverse aspects of musical practices. The Singing Verse project was initiated based on these philosophical grounds, on which the students built their own ways of creating music, and pushed their limits to discover new possibilities. We could not be any happier with the results Singing Verse has generated. As our President, Beverly Warren (who was one of the participating poets in Singing Verse), mentioned at the final concert, we also believe that the interdisciplinary projects like Singing Verse ought to take place on a regular basis. It beautifully demonstrates the very principles of the liberal arts education. Numerous compact discs of new music from Kent State University are available. The Harlequin, featuring violinists Jameson Cooper and Jacob Murphy, both KSU alumni, with KSU pianist Donna Lee and KSU faculty and student musicians, performing music by KSU faculty composers, was released on Centaur Records. About the project Jameson writes: The Harlequin was a very special project for me. It was my first commercial CD recording, and it was all about friendships and collaboration. While I was a student at Kent, I got to know and work with some truly inspiring musicians. Alongside my work in the graduate quartet, I involved myself in performing new music works, the first of which was Thomas Janson’s The Harlequin. Subsequently I was honored to have several of the composition faculty write new works for me.

The CD idea came about as a way of setting down these works for posterity and as a showcase for the Hugh A. Glauser School of Music. I was delighted to be at the confluence of so much KSU talent. The recording of Janson’s The Harlequin, in particular, was unique in that it involved almost the entire applied faculty performing together under the direction of Frank Wiley. I’m very proud of the recording and it is a reminder of the wonderful nurturing and vibrant experience I had at Kent State.

A Selection Of Currently Available CDs The Harlequin • Music by KSU composers Thomas Janson, John Ferritto, Halim El-Dabh and Frank Wiley • Jameson Cooper, violin; Jacob Murphy, violin (KSU alumni) • Frank Wiley, conductor •P erformers include KSU faculty pianist Donna Lee and KSU students, faculty and alumni. • •

Invisible Seams • Ogni Suono • Noa Even (KSU music faculty) and Phil Pierick, saxophones • •

Ralph Lorenz, Interim Director of the School of Music, writes:

Joie de Vivre! • Panorámicos • Including Oboe Machinations by KSU emeritus composer Thomas Janson • Performers include KSU oboist Danna Sundet.

It is important for the School of Music to have a strong program in new music for many reasons, not the least of which include research into new compositional practices, professional training for our students in the performance of new music, and cultural enhancement for our community. Music composition is a living art, and through the School’s efforts in new music, we are witnesses to the ongoing development of musical styles and techniques. • •

Gradient • Including Portals of Light by KSU composer Frank Wiley • Jeffrey Heisler, saxophone; I-Chen Yeh, piano • • www.ArkivMusic.comzz

A Clarinet Collective • Including Invocation and Spirit Dance by KSU composer Frank Wiley • Dennis Nygren, clarinet, KSU emeritus clarinetist • •

The Vanguard New Music Guest Artists Series

Kent/Blossom Music Festival Presents Summer Sounds Opus 1

HereNowHear Works for Two Pianos and Electronics by Stark and Stockhausen Saturday, Jan. 21, 2017, 7:30 pm

• Including new music by northeast Ohio composers performed by Kent State University faculty Danna Sundet, oboe; Donna Lee, piano; Ted Rounds, percussion; and members of The Cleveland Orchestra

Quince Contemporary Vocal Ensemble David Lang’s love fail for Voices and Percussion Saturday, Feb. 25, 2017, 7:30 pm

Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center • Including Leiyla and the Poet by KSU emeritus composer Halim El-Dabh •

The Kent State University New Music Series

The Musical World of Halim El-Dabh

Friday, Dec. 2, 2016, 8 pm—featuring the music of guest composer Marilyn Shrude

Saturday, March 4, 2017, 7:30 pm

• Book by Denise A. Seachrist, including a CD of his compositions

Other CDs of music by Halim El-Dabh are available on CD Baby.

Saturday, April 29, 2017, 7:30 pm—featuring the music of KSU alumnus composer Donald Erb


volume 12 | 2016 •

The seismic movement known as Little Free Library (LFL) was originated in 2009 by Todd H. Bol of Hudson, Wisconsin as an apt tribute to his mother, a teacher who loved to read. Using recycled materials, he built a small replica of a one room schoolhouse, attached it to a post in his front yard and filled it with an assortment of free books. Happily, he made several more such “book boxes” and gave them all away. Then, Rick Brooks of the University of WisconsinMadison joined him and they soon embarked on the phenomenon we have today, with over 50,000 Little Free Libraries in 70 countries. Bol recently delivered a Peace Pole Library to the Birmingham, Alabama 16th Street Baptist Church, a prominent African-American place of worship, in honor of the four schoolgirls killed when a bomb exploded there 53 years ago. The church later became a symbol of the civil rights movement. Bol also delivered Peace Pole Libraries to Brown Chapel A.M.E. Church

Little Free Library Seismic -— of enormous proportions or effect. Movement -— a group of people working together to advance their shared political, social, or artistic ideas.

Cheryl Townsend

#10376 Dan Smith Memorial Park in Kent

volume 12 | 2016 •


in Selma, the starting point for the Selma to Montgomery civil rights marches in 1965; and Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church in Montgomery, where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. led the congregation from 1954 to 1960. “To promote literacy and the love of reading by building free book exchanges worldwide and to build a sense of community as we share skills, creativity and wisdom across generations.”

Somewhat akin to Time Banks, LFL’s are a labor of love rewarded by the occasional comment in a journal, a cute chalk drawing on the sidewalk or a donated box of books. The Little Free Library nonprofit has been honored by the Library of Congress, the National Book Foundation and the American Library Association. Whoopi Goldberg just recently noted them as the “top of her favorite things list” on The View. Each year, nearly 10 million books are shared in LFL’s. Seeking them out when traveling is something to do when geocaching or Pokegoing just isn’t your thing. The main site has an international map where you can seek registered LFL’s out by city, state or zip code. Whenever I travel, I always try to seek out any LFL’s in that particular area, take a picture and drop off a book or two. I visited the following libraries in our general area and then later contacted their stewards to answer a few questions, first being how they initially heard about the program.

#36486 1333 Tallmadge Road in Brimfield

Shirley Mars #36486/1333 Tallmadge Road, Brimfield said, “I first learned about the LFL while visiting our daughter’s family in Boston. Many of the parks had LFLs that were constantly being visited, and I was intrigued by them. I thought that if they could work in Boston, why not in Brimfield and Suffield?” Located in the northeast square of 43 & 18 (Tallmadge Road), it has an easy, spacious parking area and shaded seating to peruse selections.

#17708 591 Palisades Drive in Akron

Diane Chambers & Don Parsisson #17708/591 Palisades Drive, Akron told me, “I think it was a story on NPR, just as LFLs were becoming popular. Both Don and I are readers, and we thought it would be something fun to do for the neighborhood. It took us over a year to finally get it up and running, but that was because Don designed and built it over time.” Another of the hand-made LFL’s and the first one I ever visited. Theirs gave me the impetus to get mine done!

I then asked what enticed them to become a steward and when their grand opening was. Jenny Stevenson #41456/165 South Hayden Parkway, Hudson answered, “Our son had a bumpy start to reading in Kindergarten. He became quickly discouraged and had a difficult time focusing and sitting for long periods at his desk in school. He loved visiting the LFL in our old neighborhood and was excited to pick out books. He had no problem focusing on a book while he stretched out in the grass outside. We started taking books outside and reading at the park, in our tree house and around camp fires. This seemed to really motivate our son to read more. This experience for our inspiration for becoming stewards. Our grand opening was June, 2016.”

Cheryl Hoover NUMC Preschool #26381/852 West Bath Road, Cuyahoga Falls “I opened a LFL last year on the play garden of Northampton Christian Preschool where I am the Director. It’s been a great way to incorporate literacy into our outdoor play space.” Set in a fenced in play area adjacent to and up the hill from the Northampton United Methodist Church. It has a bench to decide on and used to have the Root Café just below it in the church, but I have

#2719 Woodside Drive in Akron

Carter and Lily pull up some grass and dive in. Shirley Mars “I gave a list of possible projects to the Field High School Health Professions Affinity Club (HPAC) and the LFL was one of the suggestions. They were looking for a project that would promote a healthy lifestyle, advocate literacy and build a sense of community. They readily chose the LFL project and I was excited to support them in any way I could, so when they asked if I would be the steward for the Brimfield LFL, I eagerly accepted. The grand

#41456 165 South Hayden Parkway in Hudson

#26381 852 West Bath Road in Cuyahoga Falls

opening/ribbon cutting ceremony for both the Brimfield and Suffield LFLs was on May 9, 2016.”


read that it closed in February. Sad to hear, I attended several quite enjoyable poetry readings there. Primarily children’s books with some young teen, as well. Peter Wilson #2719/Woodside Drive in Riverwoods, Akron told me “We created our own. I involved a neighbor in designing and constructing ours. We first built a model out of corrugated cardboard, made modifications, and then built the finished product out of plywood.” This gorgeous LFL is set near a walking path in a park setting. Eclectic reads with ample space. Set your GPS for 1227 Woodsview for the best navigation. Abby Greer & Amanda Edwards Kent Time Bank #10376/Dan Smith Memorial Park, by Bricco’s in downtown Kent ”Amanda found a generous donor for the materials and the Kent Community TimeBank paid time credits to a member to build it.” Continued on page 31

volume 12 | 2016 •

Continued from page 29 Abby Greer & Amanda Edwards “The LFL first lived right outside the hOur Share Center. This was a brick and mortar location where members could donate time credits to have new and like new items, handmade items as well as food and toiletries. All of the items were donated by mostly time bankers. We thought the LFL fit in with the theme. So, the first stock came from members and, in particular, one member, Ralph Oates, who took to caring for the LFL and checking on it almost daily. Ralph Oates was the LFL’s greatest fan.” When you have a box in your front yard that eagerly accepts donations, one never knows what may wind up behind the door on a shelf. I’ve been lucky on the receiving end, but were they? What was their oddest book donated? Diane Chambers “12 volumes of a DIY series from 1955. They smelled awful—old book and mold.” Leah Rafferty “I have a Jehovah Witness group that leaves books or pamphlets. I usually let them stay a few days. Someone has left a Bible and I have received books in different languages.”

I did a lot of research before I took the plunge and bought my LFL, but not all information can be as easily found, so I asked if they had advice for anyone considering becoming a steward. Shirley Mars “It is satisfying to know that you are encouraging literacy, so don’t hesitate to become a steward.” Since I started this article, there have been seven new Little Free Libraries added to the area. Cleveland Clinic/Akron General has donated six to various Akron Elementary schools: (Crouse, 1000 Diagonal Road/Robinson, 1156 4th Avenue/Forest Hill, 850 Damon Street/ Findley, 65 West Tallmadge Avenue/Glover, 935 Hammel Street/Portage Path, 55 S Portage Path) and there is a new one on the map that I have not yet seen, #42906—4530 Kent Road, Stow. (Located in front of Small Steps-Big Strides Child Care.) There are also two new ones in downtown Kent within walking distance of the Time Bank location listed above. One being on Depeyster (shaped like a white bus) and another on Erie (shaped like a hotel) and given their very public location, always in need of books.

#2381 Lorena Ave in Akron

when I did send them my first inquiry. They may be near you, so I shall list them.

#3126 Cuyahoga Falls Police Department in Cuyahoga Falls

Since I installed my LFL, I have had more conversations with neighbors and area seekers than I have had in the 34 years prior. Has it made them more popular in their neighborhood?

This enormous lovely is located in the small park alongside Angel Falls Coffee on West Market in Highland Square. There are benches and, most enjoyably, a coffee house where you can try a chapter or two before deciding.

Eric Eisentraut “People will say, ‘Hi’, if we see them at the library, and some people know who I am just because of the library, so I would say it has.” Abby Greer & Amanda Edwards “It was a nice addition to downtown Kent and good marketing for our timebank hOur Share.”

There were several that I visited that either did not have an email for me to contact them or (possibly) thought I was a Nigerian spammer

Loved the yard in which #2381 sat in at 2051 Lorena Avenue in Akron. How can you go wrong with a white picket fence? (Guess when I visited it?) On street parking.

Highland Square in Akron

Continued on page 46


volume 12 | 2016 •

Written by Malavanh Rassavong


Portage Medical Support Program University Hospitals Portage Medical Center introduces the UH Portage Medical Support Program to help those seeking treatment for drug and alcohol addiction. Drug and alcohol addiction is a chronic disease that overtakes the lives of the addicted, along with their families and loved ones. Together, we can help people break free from drug and alcohol addiction and save lives.

What is addiction?

b. Impairment in behavioral control

Addiction is a primary, chronic disease of brain reward, motivation, memory and related circuitry. Addiction is progressive and like other chronic diseases, often involves cycles of relapse and remission and can result in disability or premature death.

c. C raving; or increased “hunger” for drugs or rewarding experiences

What type of substances can the Medical Support Program help a patient with?

d. Inability to recognize significant problems with one’s behaviors and interpersonal relationships

This program provides a safe medical stabilization setting for those who find themselves dependent on:

e. A dysfunctional emotional response

• Alcohol

What leads to addiction? Genetic factors account for about half of the likelihood that an individual will develop addiction. Environmental factors interact with the person’s biology and affect the extent to which genetic factors exert their influence. Culture also plays a role in how a person with biological vulnerabilities progresses to addiction.

When should someone seek treatment? As soon as you recognize any of these signs of addiction in yourself or someone you love:

Once addicted, a person no longer has control over his or her life. The addiction drives every aspect of that individual’s life. To regain control, one must choose to seek help to overcome addiction.

What is the UH Portage Medical Support Program? This is a voluntary program to treat the withdrawal symptoms of drugs and alcohol in an inpatient medical setting. We treat addiction as a chronic disease and medically stabilize patients.

a. Inability to consistently abstain from drugs and/or alcohol

volume 12 | 2016 •


• Opiates (heroin, Oxycontin®) • Prescription drugs • A combination of substances

Can addiction be treated successfully? Yes. Addiction is a treatable disease. However, addiction is a complex disease that affects brain function and behavior with no single treatment being right for everyone. We offer an individualized treatment plan which involves a three-step process:

EVALUATION This process includes lab testing, obtaining a history and performing a physical examination. A patient’s overall

physical condition is important in developing a unique plan of care.

STABILIZATION Supervised in a safe medical setting, this period allows the patient to recover from the acute effects of the drug or alcohol and undergo withdrawal. Medications are given to help with the major withdrawal symptoms. Getting the patient past the worst phases of withdrawal is the goal.

medical stabilization “Besides the passion I have and discharge plan- to help people overcome ning specific to the drug and alcohol addiction, patient’s needs. I want to conquer the preconceived notions What happens surrounding addiction and after a patient leaves? those affected by the disease. I strongly believe, Upon discharge, our that in order to properly licensed clinical staff and effectively treat will connect patients addiction, one must with local resources understand it from a to help them sustain medical perspective.” a new lifestyle, free from addiction. Our staff will continue to follow up with patients


FOLLOW-UP CARE The final step is arranging for follow-up care and treatment for the patient’s addiction.

How long will a patient stay in the hospital? University Hospitals Portage Medical Center provides a safe and anonymous admission to the Medical Support Program. The typical length of stay and time for stabilization is three days before a patient is able to go home and attend outpatient treatment. The inpatient stay includes the initial assessment, admission,

to monitor progress and provide on-going support.

Does insurance cover the Medical Support Program? Yes. Currently we are accepting commercial insurances, Medicare and Medicaid. We take addiction seriously. If you or someone you love suffers from substance abuse, we can help. Take the first step to overcoming addiction by calling the UH Portage Medical Support Program at 1-844-541-2087.


Renee Klaric, LPCC-S, LICDC-CS Program Manager, Medical Support Program, University Hospitals Portage Medical Center Renee has spent most of her career improving the services that patients receive in diverse healthcare markets, both as a practitioner and a businessperson. Her experience in program implementation has led her to this opportunity to combine her skills and knowledge in offering a new and much needed avenue for treating the chronic disease of addiction.

volume 12 | 2016 •


New Medical Staff Members


is a cardiologist with the UH Harrington Heart & Vascular Institute at UH Portage Medical Center. He specializes in minimally invasive (non-surgical) procedures for the treatment of heart and vascular disease, including treatment of peripheral artery disease and blocked blood vessels in the legs and arms. Dr. Gupta earned his medical degree from the University of Calcutta Medical College, Calcutta, India. He served his residency at Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio, and fellowships in cardiovascular disease and interventional cardiology at Sinai Samaritan Medical Center, University of Wisconsin Medical School, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Dr. Gupta is board certified in cardiovascular diseases, interventional cardiology, echocardiography and endovascular medicine. For an appointment with Dr. Gupta, please call 330-297-6110.

volume 12 | 2016 •



is a radiation oncologist with UH Seidman Cancer Center at UH Portage Medical Center. His special interests are breast cancer, cancer of the brain and spinal cord and complex radiation therapy procedures, including stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) and stereotactic radiosurgery.

is a specialist in digestive diseases with UH Portage Gastroenterology. His special interests are colon cancer prevention and treatment and management of chronic hepatitis. Dr. Okafor earned his medical degree from the University of Nigeria College of Medicine, Nsukka, Nigeria, and a Master’s in Public Health from Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland. He completed a residency at Mayo Clinic Rochester, Minnesota, and a fellowship in gastroenterology at MetroHealth Medical Center, Cleveland, Ohio. Dr. Okafor is board certified in gastroenterology and hepatology.

Dr. Ly received his medical degree from Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine of Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio. He served a residency in radiation oncology at Huntsman Cancer Institute, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah, followed by a clinical research fellowship in radiation oncology with the National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland. Dr. Ly is board certified in radiation oncology. In addition to English, he speaks fluent Vietnamese.

For more information on UH Portage Gastroenterology or to make an appointment, please call 330-297-6060.

University Hospitals Portage Medical Center has expanded its medical staff to better serve the community with the addition of specialists in cardiology, cancer, digestive diseases and pediatrics.


is a pediatrician with UH Portage Pediatrics. He practices general pediatrics and has special interest in the care of newborn infants, behavioral medicine in children (psychology), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism, concussions in children and adolescents and sports medicine. Dr. Tatka received his medical degree from the Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine at Midwestern University, Downer’s Grove, Illinois. He served a residency in pediatrics at Advocate Christ Medical Center, Oak Lawn, Illinois, and completed his training with a fellowship in neonatal-perinatal (newborn) medicine at Loyola University Medical Center, Maywood, Illinois. He is board certified in pediatrics. To make an appointment with Dr. Tatka, please call 330-297-5777.

For more information on UH Seidman Cancer Center at UH Portage Medical Center, please call 330-235-7081.

Written by Lynn Novelli


George E. Miller II Dr. Patrick O’Connor

Most creative, successful people have traveled very interesting paths to get to where they are … usually zig-zagging a lot, shifting gears, retracing steps, exploring new passions, revisiting previous experiences, maybe reinventing

How are the Children?

How are the children in the US?

Among the most accomplished and fabled tribes of Africa, the tribe considered to have the most fearsome and intelligent warriors is the mighty Maasai of Kenya and Tanzania. The traditional greeting between Maasai warriors ”Kasserian Ingera” means “and how are the children?” Even warriors with no children give the traditional response, “All the children are well.” This means peace and safety prevail; that the priorities of protecting the young, the powerless, are in place. It means the daily struggles for existence are secondary to proper care for their young.

It’s amazing the number of children in our society that are in at-risk situations, especially considering the billions spent on their well-being. Teen suicide (and attempts), homelessness, obesity, eating disorders, child abuse, absent fathers, drugs, crime, violence and bullying (personal and cyber) are rampant. The number of teens seeking mental health counseling increases every year. The complexity of these problem is difficult to understand. There are, however, many excellent resources for further study on this topic. A good place to start is to visit the website:

themselves and generally bouncing back often. All these experiences are part of their creative profile and serve to motivate and inspire them. This feature, The Road Less Traveled, tells that story. It answers the question; how did they get to where they are now? This version of the Road Less Traveled describes the path of George E. Miller II, child advocacy artist. Author note: If a reader would like to suggest someone to be considered the subject of a future Road, e-mail the publisher at

volume 12 | 2016 •


I took the road less traveled by, and that has made all the difference. — Robert Frost There are also numerous professional organizations of counselors, teachers, social workers, psychologists, probation officers and mental health providers who are struggling to keep up with the near epidemic nature of young people in at-risk situations. These professionals attend conferences and meetings where they learn the latest in best practices to address the many aspects of this problem. A number of these professionals have met George E. Miller II, child advocacy artist from Jacksonville, Florida.

Advocacy Artist George Miller has been using his artistic talents for the betterment of children for over 20 years. His art inspires us to learn in cross-cultural and multi-ethnic environments. Students, parents, educators, professionals, business owners and government leaders have praised George for his work that clearly reflects a love for children and his respect for those who teach and care for them. The purpose of his work is “educational art that inspires the spirit of learning”. In 2015, he was recognized as Black History artist of the month by Governor Rick Scott of Florida.

inspiration and a passion for learning are featured. George believes everyone has the potential to self-determine a lifetime of successful living. He practices his belief that: “Art is a powerful tool to evoke social change. Without uttering a single word, artists can enlighten, educate and effect change around the world!” George also likes to feature friends and family members as models for his art. A good example is one of his favorite pieces, Wisdom, Knowledge and Truth. His three daughters are featured as the models; Jazzie as Wisdom, Mia as Knowledge and youngest child Joi as Truth.

George’s artistic approach is to engage viewers with images and words. He creates emotional images of children in everyday situations. Many of his pieces call on adults to advocate for children who are at-risk. He also puts hidden messages in his art to draw the viewer into a theme for each piece of artwork. Themes of love, understanding, tolerance, support, hope,

Art All the Time George has had some firsthand experience of his own with children in at-risk situations. An ear infection as a child resulted in a hearing impairment which effected his speech. As such, George was viewed as having limited ability because he rarely talked in his early grades. This led to him being pretty much ignored by his teachers and classmates. He loved to draw and since he spent so much time in isolation, drawing became both a pastime and an emotional release. The hearing impairment was diagnosed and corrected with surgery around age 11 and both his speech and hearing improved. He finally began to live the school life most children were enjoying. However, by this time, he had been somewhat stereotyped and remained isolated from the mainstream school climate. He had, by this time, however, honed his art skills to the point where he was the go-to guy any time a teacher wanted a class poster, sign or any kind of artwork prepared. He had a niche of sorts but he was still on the outside looking in.

“Art is therapy for me as much as it is for those who view my art.”

Continued on page 38


volume 12 | 2016 •

Artist & Children at King Tisdell Museum in Savannah, Georgia

Continued from page 37

Broadening the Perspective After high school in Pittsburgh, (four years of art classes) his mother signed so he could enter the Air Force, since he was only 17. He traveled a good bit during his military duty and loved visiting other countries, meeting different people and seeing some amazing world geography. While in the military, many of his assignments were working as a gate guard on a base. This job has a lot of downtime (especially the late shift) which George used for drawing. And the military base had an arts/craft center where he taught some art classes. He also did portraits of retiring military officers and over time, became known as “the base artist”. George left the Air Force after five years and took a job as a postal clerk in Los Angeles. It was a secure job for sure, but also very routine. He started out with a walking delivery route for a few years and then worked as a postal security officer. This position, like the others, had a lot of downtime which George used for drawing. At this time, he actually used brown paper towels from the bathroom as his canvas. A quiet assignment that involved little interaction with people worked well for him. Or, so he thought. At age 24 now, he was still very quiet and conscious of his speech patterns. He continued to dabble in his artwork evenings and weekends.

volume 12 | 2016 •

Like school and the military, he was the go-to guy whenever someone wanted any kind of artwork. A co-worker might want a portrait of a child, a friend might want a sign made or any number of other art jobs that enabled him to tolerate the boring work life he had. He knew his passion for art would have to become a bigger part of his life and career. He also knew he had to concentrate on his dream full time. He decided, “if you work full time doing something you dislike and only practice your dream, when you have time for it, the dream suffers”.

Time for a Change After seven years in the postal service, George decided to change careers to become a fulltime artist and entrepreneur. His focus would be on artwork that advocates for children in at-risk situations, starting with literacy. All his family and friends tried to persuade him to stay with the secure postal job; work the 30 years with a modest (steady and secure) salary, good benefits and decent working conditions. They pleaded with him, “Why would you leave something so solid?“ George appreciated their concern and holds no ill will toward them because he knew they “were scared for me”. It also occurred to him that he had been sort of “hoodwinked” into believing that this was all he could do in life. Family, friends, school, the military, his coworkers and even society had been sending him the message that this life was good enough for him. He should just be glad he had a good job with decent pay and fall in line like most people. Many of those same family and friends now proudly display George’s artwork in their homes and offices. In fact, they have become his most enthusiastic supporters … and some of his best customers!


A Leap of Faith—Child Advocacy Artist In 1993, a teacher asked George to be a guest speaker to her middle school students. She wanted them to learn about him and his artwork. This was a bit out of his comfort zone, considering he was still shy about his speaking ability. One thing he was sure of though, was his love for his art. “It’s what is inside me that comes out on the canvas. It mesmerizes me to see where it goes and what I wind up with it.” The students and the teacher were very impressed with George’s presentation and the teacher encouraged him to think about becoming a full-time artist. In fact, the teacher persisted to the point that she actually helped him contact the California League of Middle Schools to exhibit his work at their annual conference. He was a nervous wreck as he drove down to San Diego from Los Angeles. He was however, shocked and amazed at the positive response teachers had to his work. He credits Ms. Lavette Grey for encouraging him and

Artist George E. Miller, Daughter Joi Miller, Florida First Lady Ann Scott and Governor Rick Scott

It Takes A Village To Raise A Child featured in the Disney Movie The Preacher’s Wife

starting him on his way as a professional artist. In 1996, he launched his career as a full-time artist exhibiting at professional conferences around the country. He and Ms. Grey remain in contact to this day.

The Business Side of Art A professional artist must rely on a certain amount of business knowledge to succeed. For many artists, this education often comes from experience. George can testify first hand to this! Things were moving along quite well for him for about 12 years. He had built up a schedule of conferences to exhibit his work, he was receiving art commissions, sales were good at his studio and he had created a substantial inventory of art. His warm, pleasant style and artistic talent were appealing to many people. In 2003, he relocated his family and business to Jacksonville, Florida where the cost of living was more attractive to his business. He was enjoying a reasonable level of success and then the economic downturn in 2008 hit which had a devastating effect on his personal and business lives. The recession resulted in a dramatic decline in the number of conference attendees who could afford to travel. He suddenly found himself basically alone at his exhibit table. He had lots of experience and practice at being alone. He would once again have to rely on his artwork to move him forward. The devastation from the recession propelled him to expand his artistic range and seek new markets for his art. He was learning and hearing (mostly from customers) about the devastating effects of abuse on children. This led to him thinking of himself as a child advocacy artist

and that art could have a healing affect. He expanded his focus from literacy education to counseling and mental health associations that advocate for children in need. He felt these were places where his art could have the most impact. George attends about 20 conferences a year, exhibiting his work and is a frequent guest speaker at schools and social service agencies. He also does commission artwork and sales from his studio. He has created hundreds of pieces of art and features 25 of them as an exhibitor. Some of the associations he frequents are The Child Welfare League of America, The National Youth at Risk Association, The American Association of School Social Workers, The Federation of Families, National Dropout Prevention Center/ Network, The Utah Comprehensive Counseling Association, The Florida Coalition for Children and the Florida Network of Child Advocacy Centers. The International Reading Association, among other associations, has used his artwork for the conference program cover. He is honored to work alongside professionals who strive to support children in need. George believes the difficulties of the recession that almost led to bankruptcy actually gave him an “opportunity to survive”. His expanded artwork and audiences have taken him to places he never could have imagined. And he finds himself feeling closer and closer to the young people his clients serve. George’s artwork can be viewed at

people face. He encourages them to follow their dreams, but to realize the road will be difficult. Perhaps, if we wish to be part of the solution for others, we must first find solutions for ourselves. As he ponders his future, he hopes to expand his art and include some of his poetry, perhaps combining the two into a “coffee table” book. He is also enthused about an idea to create artwork to accompany the 30 basic human rights advocated by Eleanor Roosevelt in the 1940s. He has turned what he loves into what he does which seems to be a good recipe for a fulfilling, satisfying life. George uses his gift “to encourage students to stay in school, to salute the adults that stand up for our children and to make visible the love that exists but cannot always be seen.” Make visible … nice thought, George.

Part of the Solution George sees his life and work as part of the solution to the struggles so many young


volume 12 | 2016 •

Intersections Artists Master Line and Space

Janice Driesbach Chief Curator

On view through January 15, 2017 at the Akron Art Museum Intersections: Artists Master Line and Space showcases recent work by six sculptors whose engagement with paper is essential to their practice. Mark Fox, Anne Lindberg, Nathalie Miebach, John Newman, Judy Pfaff and Ursula von Rydingsvard undertake explorations with paper and in three dimensions that inform one another in a dynamic creative process. Representing multiple generations and aesthetic perspectives, the artists in Intersections share a number of attributes. Most studied with or cite Minimalist artists—including Al Held, Donald Judd and Sol LeWitt—as models and mentors, yet each creates work that is crafted by hand in the studio or gallery. As well, they all embrace non-traditional materials, extending explorations by such groundbreaking artists working in the 1960s as Eva Hesse, Lee Bontecou and Jackie Winsor. Without exception, artists in Intersections consistently pursue new ways of realizing work, using methods that range from making hand-corrugated “cardboard,” to pulling cotton thread across large spans, combining unlikely materials, and pressing abaca paper into carved cedar. Sculptures on view are constructed using additive

volume 12 | 2016 •

processes and, as with the works on paper, are at once abstract and metaphoric. Three new works were created onsite for Intersections. Judy Pfaff readily marries 2D and 3D elements in Turtle. Her immersive installation is titled after a myth that describes the world as flat and resting on the shell of a giant turtle. An array of disparate materials, including expanded foam, digitally-manipulated photographs, lead orbs cast from cannonball molds and elegant glass teardrops are suspended from a steel “space grid” welded in the artist’s studio. Tree root systems, fiberglass and tape create linear patterns while the abundant disks covered with distorted images reflect Pfaff’s wide range of interests and references. Anne Lindberg suspended nearly nineteen miles of Egyptian cotton thread across a gallery for inside green. The artist, who views her work “first and foremost as drawings, albeit volumetric,” used fifteen colors of thread to create her shimmering composition. Following a visit to Akron, she selected the blue, yellow and green tones in response to the quality of light and white oak floors in the museum


galleries. Three graphite and colored pencil drawings, with layered lines rendered using a parallel bar, were conceived in tandem with inside green. Their horizontal lines offer a rush of energy, creating an “overriding sense of a band of color.” Nathalie Miebach’s Sibling Rivalry fills a wall with elements that are playful, yet address serious issues in its comparison of Hurricanes Sandy and Katrina. Blue cubes outlining the Mississippi River and Delta divide her composition. Below are images of amusement park rides destroyed by Sandy. Above, forms

Bottom Images; Left to Right: Anne Lindberg, inside green (detail) 2016, Egyptian cotton thread, staples, Akron Art Museum. Photography by Joe Levack/Studio Akron. Anne Lindberg, inside green 2016, Egyptian cotton thread, staples, Akron Art Museum. Photography by Joe Levack/Studio Akron. Jimmy Kuehnle, Wiggle, Giggle, Jiggle 2016, polyester fabric, Akron Art Museum. Photography by Shane Wynn. Jimmy Kuehnle, Wiggle, Giggle, Jiggle 2016, polyester fabric, Akron Art Museum. Photography by Shane Wynn.

Top Images; Left to Right:

indicating New Orleans neighborhoods are placed alongside jumbled houses and collapsed levies. As with all of the artist’s work, data plays a central role in Sibling Rivalry. A large wheel records changes in wind velocity, rainfall and barometric pressure the night Katrina made landfall, and other storm statistics appear interspersed with narrative elements that convey the storm’s human stories. Intersections: Artists Master Line and Space is organized by the Akron Art Museum and generously supported by the Lehner Family Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation and by the Ohio Arts Council. Special thanks to Hilton Garden Inn Akron.

Jimmy Kuehnle: Wiggle, Giggle, Jiggle Written by Akron Art Museum Staff On view through February 19, 2017 at the Akron Art Museum Art doesn’t have to be serious or austere. One look at Jimmy Kuehnle’s work makes that point abundantly clear. Kuehnle’s sculptures consist of oversized, colorful architectural and organic forms. The work has a sense of wonder and play that attracts audiences of all ages.

Humor and play are key components of Kuehnle’s work, which he creates to respond specifically to the spaces they inhabit. Some of his sculptural works consist of immense inflatable suits with bulky, colorful appendages and architectural structures that the artist wears in open spaces, engaging with passersby, bumping into objects and buildings as he goes. Other sculptures, such as this one, activate and even gently mock architectural space by cramming bright, flexible shapes of inflated fabric into every nook and cranny. “I try to find the line between the spectacle and the absurd. If I can make something that you can’t quite put into a category, well maybe you’re going to think, maybe there’s going to be a short circuit and then a genuine interaction with you can occur,” says Kuehnle. Kuehnle, who teaches at the Cleveland Institute of Art, has had solo shows at museums, galleries and universities in the United States and internationally. His recent exhibition at the Hudson River Museum in New York was reviewed in the New York Times. In 2014, he was selected for the national survey exhibition State of the Art: Discovering American Art Now at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. As a Fulbright Graduate Research Fellow in Japan, 2008, he pursued his interest in public art and


Judy Pfaff, Turtle (installation detail) courtesy of the artist and Pavel Zoubok Gallery, New York. Photography by Joe Levack/Studio Akron. Judy Pfaff, Turtle (installation view) courtesy of the artist and Pavel Zoubok Gallery, New York. Photography by Joe Levack/Studio Akron. Nathalie Miebach, Sibling Rivalry (detail) 2016, reed, wood, rope, data. Photography by Joe Levack/Studio Akron. Nathalie Miebach, Sibling Rivalry 2016, reed, wood, rope, data. Photography by Joe Levack/Studio Akron.

sculpture. In 2016, Kuehnle received a Creative Workforce Fellowship, a program of the Community Partnership for Arts and Culture. Jimmy Kuehnle: Wiggle, Giggle, Jiggle is organized by the Akron Art Museum and supported by a generous gift from The Mary S. and David C. Corbin Foundation. Additional support provided by Brouse McDowell, LPA and the Ohio Arts Council. Upcoming Programs with Jimmy Kuehnle Gallery Talk: Jimmy Kuehnle Thursday, December 15 • 6:30 pm • Free Meet artist Jimmy Kuehnle, learn about his creative process and how he came to create his trademark inflatable sculptures.

volume 12 | 2016 •

Elliott Ingersoll, Ph.D.


in Roman Holiday

Dr. Bonnachoven was onto something that we Americans could learn from. The holidays are upon us. What a weird way to describe holidays. It sounds like we are being suffocated by a Sumo wrestler rather than getting ready to celebrate something. While all cultures celebrate holidays year round, in the United States, the holidays between Halloween and Groundhog Day cause Americans more stress than any other time of year. “But wait,” you may protest, “aren’t holidays supposed to be fun?” Well … ideally yes; but in reality, more of us will be swallowing Xanax than eggnog for the next month. With the holidays “upon us,” Americans experience more anxiety and take more anti-anxiety medications than any other time of year. In addition, stress-related alcohol consumption increases as well as more recreational drinking. It is not totally ironic that we stress around the holidays because the word “holiday” comes from an Old English word haligdæg. This word meant a “holy day” which usually marked a religious festival as well as a day of exemption from labor and recreation. That is not totally correct though, as most of us over age 11 will experience lots of work November through December and little recreation. In a way, holidays are a lot like Facebook in that our real life never quite measures up to the ideal of the FB profile. In this case, the holiday ideal is in our mind or the unrealistic expectations of family members. Many people will experience holiday stress due to financial problems.

volume 12 | 2016 •

Others may feel alone and left out of many of the activities associated with whatever celebration their culture is emphasizing. Most of us will want to enjoy the holidays but may not have time to figure out how. That is what I want to help with in this article.

Mindful Planning Some types of planning reduce stress while other types increase it. A comedian once quipped, “In terms of relief, cancelling plans is like heroin.” While I wouldn’t go that far, I do understand the sentiment. Scheduling or planning leisure time activities makes them feel like work which is when we are more likely to cancel them (C’mon— who wouldn’t want to cancel some “work”?). Technology has also made it easier to cancel a planned event (quick text “Dang—the dog ate my ticket—go on without me.”). Even though holidays are times to share with others, most of us still need some time alone. Before you say “yes” to an invitation, think it through. Prioritize the people you really want to spend time with. If you have trouble saying “no” in general, buy yourself time with something like “let me double check my calendar which happens to be in Columbus right now.” Seriously though, if you feel pressured to make a quick response, you can always say “Thanks—let me check and get back with you.” Also remember that it is totally fine to accept an invitation to a party and not stay the entire time.


“Putting in an appearance” can be a good strategy for those who are uncomfortable at parties. It is strange, but in our culture, taking time for oneself is sometimes called “selfish.” Well, I guess that is the correct word, but it doesn’t have to have a negative connotation. Being selfish can just mean you are giving yourself the gift of some time to do whatever you like. In Sinclair Lewis’s book Babbitt, the title character, George Babbitt says, “I’ve never done a single thing I’ve wanted to in my whole life!” In case you missed the book, he was not a happy camper. Being selfish looks pretty good compared to being Babbitt. Some of you may be thinking “this guy doesn’t understand—I never have enough time anyway, let alone time to plan holiday activities!” It is true that Americans work more hours than people in other developed countries and take fewer vacation days. However, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says that Americans average five hours of leisure time a day and spend Continued on page 44


volume 12 | 2016 •

Continued from page 43 t ime and good humor where you will do your best to see the good in others. Trying to see the best in others often brings out the best in ourselves.

almost three of those watching television. So, consider saving your binge watching for the dank, dark days of January and dedicate those hours to some holiday things you enjoy between Halloween and New Year’s.

Create Your Own Holiday

Diet and Exercise

Some of us feel no real connection to the cultural festivals that populate the end of the year. That doesn’t mean you are out of luck—it just means you might have a good reason to think outside the gift box. Some people want to share meaningful times with loved ones outside the more culturally scripted holidays. For those pioneers, here are a couple ideas.

Holidays come with a wide array of treats we usually don’t allow ourselves at other times of year (who makes stuffing on a regular basis?). These are part of the fun, but some of us can slide into bad habits when we skip workouts and double up on desserts. Running to a buffet does not count as exercise any more than curling pints of Guinness at Ray’s Place. Try to make time for whatever exercise you usually do and eat as healthfully as you can between treats. Moderation is ideal but for many of us during holidays, it ranges from unrealistic to impossible. At the very least, try to balance indulgences with healthy habits. If you don’t have any healthy habits, you’re likely to be one of those people whose New Year’s resolution is to join a gym January 2nd. If this ends up being you, don’t forget that Kent Parks and Recreation has a wonderful fitness center for just $10 a month. They even have a television you can watch while working off holiday calories and maintaining your television time.

Flexible New Year The “New Year” on January 1st is based on the Gregorian calendar, but is only one of many “New Year” festivals. You could celebrate New Year during the Gaelic festival of Samhain (pronounced “Sah-win”) that takes place from sunset October 31st to sunset November 1st. It traditionally marked the end of harvest season. In Islam, the first day of the New Year is the first day of Muharram (the month of remembrance) which will begin September 20th, 2017. These are just a couple of examples of dozens of ways to mark a new year.

Make Time for Giving We have all been told “it is better to give than to receive”, but most of us don’t buy it. Spiritual or ethical considerations aside, there is a psychological magic to planning things for others—especially around holidays. In many cultures, delivering anonymous gifts provides needed relief to those who receive them and reminds those who give them that we are really in this together. Maybe you want to take some of your television time to volunteer in a way that is meaningful to you. Kent area volunteer activities are listed at As odd as it may sound, “giving” can also take the form of spending time with others like family who perhaps you don’t enjoy much. Most of us can relate to the idea of loving Halloween because it is the only holiday that doesn’t require us to have a big meal with our extended family. While no one should spend time with others who are abusive, I am suggesting reframing those family traditions that you sort of dread but would never abstain from. In that sense, think of it as a “charitable donation” of

volume 12 | 2016 •

Groundhog Day One of the most underrated holidays is Groundhog Day. It is February 2nd in 2017 and derives from festivals marking the beginning of the end of winter. Groundhog Day comes from a Celtic festival Imbolc that in Celtic literally means “in the belly.” That is thought to refer to the pregnancy of ewes (female sheep) believed to be an early sign of spring. So, if you need an excuse to keep your holiday lights up into February, Groundhog Day is it. For a list of other bizarre and unique days you could celebrate, check out Whatever feelings holidays evoke in you, they don’t have to consume you. Mindful planning, focusing on others and having some fun with your imagination can ease whatever burdens holidays bring. In the end, we really are in this together and in that spirit, I wish you the happiest of holidays this season.


aroundKent Landmarks

Buy local, unique prints, and support the community and those in need of a little help. Now that’s a gift worth giving! • Quality Prints Available Online • They Make Great Gifts!

• Framing Available at McKay Bricker • A Portion of the Proceeds Goes to Help Feed our Community

Visit to order prints.


volume 12 | 2016 •

Continued from page 31 How exciting to find one inside the Cuyahoga Falls Police Department? It’s next to a small children’s play area and contains mostly younger reading. #26855 is at 1161 Delia Avenue, Akron with nice street parking and landscaping ideas all up and down the street it resides on. So, there you have it. Literacy is alive and well in northeast Ohio. People are sharing their love of a good read and inviting you to do the same. #26855 Delia Avenue in Akron

• Give it room for all sizes of books and space for bookmarks, a journal and pamphlets that initially explain the concept. You can add a motion activated, battery powered LED light inside for night browsing and solar lights outside. Consider adding a bench, if you have the room. If you have dog walkers, maybe offer biscuits. (Aldi’s has them cheap enough you won’t go broke making the pooches happy.) You can also add in a geocache to bring a wider chance of readers. • Hit some Goodwill’s, public library book sales or yard sales if you don’t initially have eager donors. Keep in mind, children’s books are usually taken most. The Twinsburg Library has its own book shop with amazing deals on books! They also have sales on the 2nd Saturday of the month. • Register your library at A Charter sign, giving you your own unique number and making you officially one of many, will run you from $42.45—$89.00. But if you buy your LFL as a kit from the organization, it comes with one. Next, put it on the official map, linked to from the LFL site. The money helps the organization be able to

donate library kits to the less fortunate. • Tell your neighbors you’re open for reading. Create a Facebook page. Host a grand opening! Have authors present with book signings! •A ccept that not just the books may disappear. There is also the chance of vandalism. As with all good, there are those who inflict evil. People may also take your books to sell elsewhere. Sad, but true. You can somewhat prevent that by stamping the inside of your books with your personal LFL stamp. (Available at the LFL site, •M aintain your library! Keep it mostly stocked, leaving room for donations and check what is donated to ensure your intent is honored. If you wind up with too many to store, look up other LFL’s in the area and share! And as I’m sure you have surmised by now, I’m not only a Little Free Library spokesperson, I’m also a steward. I welcome you at 4975 Comanche Trail in Stow. You may find me toiling away in the garden, weather permitting. But if not, feel free to ring the door bell and I’ll offer a cup of coffee and we can talk books (or gardening) on the front porch.

Interested? Here’s a couple pointers: • Make sure there are no restrictions in your area that would prevent you from putting up a library structure. • Try using recycled materials and make it unique. There is a Pinterest group that can give you ideas or go to the official LFL site and look at some of those noted. You dig a hole, stick in a post, back fill the hole then affix a dollhouse-sized cupboard atop said pole and fill it with vivid imagination and intellect food, then become the most popular yard in the neighborhood!

volume 12 | 2016 •

#26112 Comanche Trail in Stow


volume 12 | 2016 •



volume 12 | 2016 •

volume 12 | 2016 •


James & Maureen Kovach

W N E O / W E AO Akron • Canton • Cleveland • Youngstown

For the Love of Western Reserve PBS and the Arts

SEVERAL EVENINGS A WEEK, we are totally dedicated to viewing Western Reserve Public Media’s channels (WNEO-WEAO) from the comfort of our villa at Concordia at Sumner retirement community.

PBS. Tuesdays usually finds us glued to the Great Performances at the Met operas (on the 49.2 Fusion channel), and Thursdays we are entertained by lighthearted mysteries including Father Brown and Midsomer Murders.

Sunday is Masterpiece night, with gems such as “Downton Abbey,” “Sherlock” and currently, “Poldark” on Western Reserve

We have been fans and advocates for the performing arts, and the exceptional dramas and musical presentations on PBS, for as long

as we can remember. We fondly remember the spot-on performances of Jeremy Brett as Sherlock Holmes and John Thaw as Inspector Morse in the 80s and 90s, followed now by Benedict Cumberbatch as the contemporary Sherlock. We’ve enjoyed Kevin Lewis reprising his role as Morse’s sidekick in “Inspector Lewis,” and in another spin-off, Shaun Evans as a young Endeavour Morse in “Endeavour.” In addition, who could forget the iconic performances of The Three Tenors (Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo and José Carreras) in the televised concert series on PBS that introduced millions worldwide to opera? Now, we have superstar Andrea Bocelli and numerous male tenor groups from various countries following in their footsteps, and we are watching in real time on public television.

Dr. John Watson (played by Martin Freeman) and Sherlock Holmes (Benedict Cumberbatch): PBS Masterpiece, Sherlock

Jim’s love and advocacy for the arts traces back to his days at Buchtel High School in Akron, where he acted in plays at Weathervane Playhouse and then at The University of Akron (UA), and even had a foray into summer stock theater after college. With a group of like-minded pals, he regularly sought out the movies of Alec Guinness and Ingmar Bergman at local art film houses, and he wrote movie reviews for the UA student newspaper in a column Continued on page 56


volume 12 | 2016 •

Continued from page 55 called “Show Biz.” He served on the boards of Weathervane and the Akron Symphony Orchestra for many years, and was president and executive vice president, respectively, of those organizations. Both of us are theater buffs, even having spent our honeymoon in New York seeing as many as two Broadway shows each day. We lived for a few years in Ridgewood, New Jersey, and were able to frequently “pop into Manhattan” to see a show. Now, when PBS’s Great Performances features a live performance of a Broadway show, we have a front-row seat in the comfort of our home. We are also huge fans of opera. Jim was hooked immediately after seeing the Metropolitan Opera’s touring company in Cleveland performing Puccini’s Turandot and hearing the tenor’s aria Nessun Dorma. Maureen took a little

longer to become a fan, but became a believer after seeing several of the Live in HD telecasts from the Met at a local movie theater. We are thrilled that the rebroadcasts of the Live in HD operas on PBS have brought that extraordinary musical experience right into our home. We are not passive viewers of PBS, either. Recognizing that funding for local PBS stations is always problematic and that the vast majority of that money comes from individual supporters, we have in recent years become major financial supporters of Western Reserve Public Media. We are proud to be underwriters of Masterpiece dramas and various other arts and culture programs, wherein we proudly state, “supporting excellence in the performing arts and public broadcasting programming.” Our support of the arts extends to Jim’s alma mater, The University of Akron. We are longtime members of the Advancement Council for what

is now known as the Fine Arts Division of the College of Arts and Sciences. Recognizing that tuition costs and the student debt load are constantly increasing, we offer scholarship assistance for students in the performing arts. To date, we have been privileged to assist 34 UA students with scholarships. In honor of Maureen’s sister, Sister Eileen Collins, OSU, an Ursuline nun and retired psychologist, we also provide scholarships to students majoring in psychology at Ursuline College in Pepper Pike. Not having been blessed with children, our support of PBS and local arts organizations also provides us with an opportunity to extend that support to future generations by including those organizations as beneficiaries of a charitable trust that will be created by our estate plan. We participate in Western Reserve Public Media’s Legacy Society that provides funding annually to assure continuance of programs including Masterpiece, Great Performances, American Masters and Nova. As strong advocates for PBS, we hope that other local individuals will be inspired by our support of Western Reserve Public Media and PBS, and that they, too, will become donors of the station at whatever level their financial situation allows. James and Maureen Kovach of Copley, Ohio are longtime supporters of Western Reserve Public Media, as both sustaining members in the Producers Circle and program underwriting.

Italian tenor, Andrea Bocelli: PBS Great Performances

volume 12 | 2016 •


Mo’ Mojo

The TwistOffs

Mo’ Mojo is a hard driving, high energy, Zydeco-based “Party-Gras” Band. The female fronted group features three-part harmonies, accordion, fiddle, guitar, rubboard, sax, trumpet, harp, bass, percussion, and drums. The band visited 8 countries in 2014 — 15 (from Central America to Central Asia), spreading the Zydeco gospel as “Cultural Ambassadors” for the U.S. State Department. The new album has a dozen songs: nine originals; two Zydeco standards meant to pay homage to the musical tradition; and one part cover/part original medley based off of Bob Marley’s, “Stir It Up.” It features a Zydecobase that blends in reggae, Cajun, blues, instrumental, and indie sounds.

Formed by ringleader Erik Walter (guitar/vocals) in a dank, suburban basement in Kent, Ohio in 1986, The TwistOffs have since performed more than 2,000 shows, tracked more than 150,000 miles and covered over 40 states and three countries.

Shivering Timbers Sarah is a captivating singer — part P.J. Harvey, part Patsy Cline — add the nuanced howl of Jayson’s guitar work for the perfect mate to her sultry vocals. Their performance can entrance and haunt the audience, while in the next breath, invite them into a whimsical, foot-stomping play land with the percussive mastery of Daniel Kshywonis on drums. More importantly, Shivering Timbers has been honing their considerable craft on relentless tour stops with Shovels & Rope, Jessica Lea Mayfield, Kenny Loggins, Alejandro Escovedo, Field Report, Carolyn Wonderland, Kopecky, and so many more; resulting in a live presence that combines Indie Rock energy, Blues/Punk passion, and Country/Gospel reflection, all evidenced in their second album “Sing Sing”.

15 60 75 The Numbers Band

The Numbers Band has been praised by almost every national music publication and several international publications since the beginning of their 30 years of live performances and recordings. Many fans are under the impression that the band remains obscure by choice. In fact, they have never been offered a contract from any recording company in the industry, ever.

volume 12 | 2016 •


Hey Mavis

Americana-Roots band, Hey Mavis was born along the winding path of the Cuyahoga River. With their fine musicianship, strong songwriting and engaging stage presence, they weave together a musical tapestry that speaks the truth of our human condition — with all of it’s beauty, heartache, humor, disappointment and joy. Over the past five years, Hey Mavis has methodically ramped-up touring efforts, moving from humble porch concerts in the Cuyahoga Valley to successful shows at NPR’s Mountain Stage and the Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival. Their new music video, “Love We Give”, was filmed in our beautiful Kent, Ohio!

David Mayfield If you’ve seen David Mayfield perform with The Avett Brothers, Mumford & Sons, Jessica Lea Mayfield, or at Bonnaroo, you’ve caught the charisma, the heart, and the comedy and it’s likely you’ll come back for more. STRANGERS, Mayfield’s first album with Compass is a tour de force, stretching from the avant-garde to Mayfield’s musical roots which are buried deep in the bluegrass tradition from a childhood of touring with his family’s band. Tracks range from the Celtic-inspired opener “Caution,” which features Mayfield’s deft ability in orchestrating complex instrumentation, to “The Man I’m Trying to Be,” a sharply honest song that is as dark and it is tender.

Rachel & The Beatnik Playboys Rachel & The Beatnik Playboys embrace and explore many Americana styles — and combine them into a soulful, powerful sound. With original compositions and their own unique channeling of Americana classics, Rachel & The Beatnik Playboys are blazing new trails into the world of Americana.

The Speedbumps

The Speedbumps are an award-winning American band with a warm, authentic sound, built on a passion for hollow-bodied instruments, indie-folk influences, and singer-songwriter Erik Urycki’s breathy, commanding vocals and canny phrasing. The band’s roots lie deep in the Rustbelt, where quiet strength and limited embellishment define the culture. The working class towns around Akron, the former rubber capital, from which artists like The Black Keys, Jessica Lea Mayfield, and Joseph Arthur have emerged, have provided the band with an aesthetic that seeks to tease out beauty from the gritty details of everyday life.

SvobodaBand SvobodaBand is a trio from Kent, Ohio that is reinventing the roots of music and live performances. Their unique sound mixes blues, jazz, soul and folk to create a musical experience that is both familiar and original. Singer Bethany Svoboda transitions between auxiliary percussion and guitar while singing passionate lead and back up harmonies. Dan Desantis gracefully commands lead guitar, fusing blues and jazz standards and Elliott Ingersoll adds depth and atmosphere on upright and acoustic basses. Three part harmonies layer smoothly and powerfully making this trio a rare act that you don’t want to miss!


Xtra Crispy Xtra Crispy is a perfect blend of blues rock and Americana, blending foot-stomping rock and roll with pure and golden melodies.


Copali is an original instrumental funk fusion band based in Northeast Ohio. Their shows consist of a unique and exciting blend of musical styles. Copali, formed in the summer of 2014 is on the rise and maintains an active presence in the Northeast Ohio music scene. Copali’s self-titled debut album was released in December of 2015 and is available at Follow them on

volume 12 | 2016 •

volume 12 | 2016 •



volume 12 | 2016 •

Tempt your palate with a selection from the largest wine list in town, craft beers and well-executed, classic cocktails handcrafted with a contemporary twist served by a knowledgeable wait staff. Complement your drink choice from the allappetizer menu including options such as seared scallops, shrimp and chorizo flatbread and bacon-wrapped medjool dates, or satisfy your sweet tooth with a slice of cherrywood smoked cheesecake or warm croissant donut paired with a spot of espresso. Just below street level with dark colors and textures typical of a private club with history hanging in the air, the Franklin Hotel Bar offers a sense of sophistication amongst a comfortable, relaxed vibe. Cozy up by the fireplace on the plush furniture in the classy lounge of yore, take a seat at the bar or gather with friends in an intimate booth under soft lighting with a hint of music in the background. The bar is housed in the basement level of the neo-classical revival style, five-story structure which was once the pride of the Kent community when it opened as a hotel in 1920, offering 50 guest rooms, a restaurant, a ballroom and a mezzanine level. With its 11-foot ceilings and exposed brick walls, the hotel’s billiard parlor and barbershop originally occupied the basement space. Kent businessman, Mike Beder, is partnering with other local Kent business owners, Mike Awad and Ron Burbick. Beder owns the Water Street Tavern, Venice Café and Tree City Coffee & Pastry. Awad is the owner of Laziza Restaurant and Main Street Continental Grill and Burbick is the developer and owner of Acorn Alley and Acorn Corner. Burbick was instrumental in the revitalization of downtown Kent and purchased the 1920’s concrete and

masonry structure from the City of Kent in late 2011 and quickly began the restoration process. The building is a visual landmark from almost every entry point into downtown Kent and a great example of preserving history and bringing that history back to life for new generations to experience.

“The Franklin Hotel Bar is an upscale cocktail bar first and foremost, and the location is fantastic being right in the heart of downtown and directly across the street from the Kent Stage,” according to Beder. “We also like that it’s a little tucked away. Even though we plan on enhancing its visibility, we want to maintain a secluded feel.” Kent resident, Rachel Jernigan, will serve as the Franklin Hotel Bar’s general manager and executive chef, Chuck Crawford, will be serving up contemporary flavors designed for sharing. Rachel brings a wealth of experience in upscale dining and bar service as the former bar manager at One Red Door and Flipside in Hudson, as does Crawford who was executive chef at the Bistro on Main, as well as at the former Mangiamo Restaurant in Kent. The bar is not the place to go to watch a ball game, but rather, a place to socialize with plenty of options for whatever kind of night you are having. “We have thought for a long time that Kent needed an upscale bar and it will be a great place to go at the beginning or end of the night for the locals, university faculty and staff or first timers to Kent,” said Beder. Come for the old-timey feel, sip a cocktail, or indulge in a shared plate or decadent dessert. And while you can’t actually spend the night, it’s a great place to linger until last call. Located at 176 East Main Street in Kent.

Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.