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T h e O f f i c i a l M a g a z i n e o f t h e C i t y o f P i c k e r i n g t o n a n d V i o l e t To w n s h i p


Best Behavior PCHS senior considers neuroscience

INSIDE Picks from Pickerington VTWL celebrates 20 years  CBUS Pizza 

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1335 Dublin Rd., Ste. 101C Columbus, Ohio 43215 614-572-1240 • Fax 614-572-1241 Kathleen K. Gill Gianna Barrett

Vice President, Sales

Dave Prosser

Chief Creative Officer

Gary Hoffman Lydia Freudenberg Mallory Arnold Rocco Falleti Zoë Glore

Your Trusted Home Improvement & Repair Ally in Pickerington 614.907.8855

Amanda DePerro

8 Lockville Road, Suite A Pickerington, OH 43147


Creative Director Editor Associate Editors Assistant Editor Contributing Editor

Brittany Mosley

Editorial Assistant

Paula Harer Diane Trotta

Advertising Sales

Jessica Flowers

Office Manager


614-572-1240 CityScene Media Group also publishes: CityScene Magazine Dublin Life Magazine Westerville Magazine Tri-Village Magazine Healthy New Albany Magazine


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Our Preschool classroom focuses on building children’s confidence and independence so they feel comfortable venturing out, exploring on their own and asking questions.

Primrose School of Pickerington 131 Clint Drive, Pickerington, OH 43147 614.575.9930

Discover Grove City Magazine The Publisher welcomes contributions in the form of manuscripts, drawings, photographs or story ideas to consider for possible publication. Enclose a SASE with each submission or email lfreudenberg@ Publisher does not assume responsibility for loss or damage. The appearance of advertising in Pickerington Magazine does not constitute an endorsement of the advertiser’s product or service by the City of Pickerington. Pickerington Magazine is published in June, August, October, December, February and April. Subscriptions are free for households within the city limits of Pickerington, Ohio. For advertising information or bulk purchases, call 614-572-1240. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written consent of the publishers. Pickerington Magazine is a registered trademark of CityScene Media Group. Printed in the U.S.A. © 2019.

pickerington magazine

The Official Magazine of Pickerington and Violet Township

volume 12, number 2 december 2019/january 2020

6 Calendar 8

News and Information from the City of Pickerington

10 News and Information from Violet Township



Women Raising a Community The Violet Township Women’s League celebrates 20 years of success



Reining in the Holidays A Pickerington holiday staple welcomes its favorite attendees: reindeer

in focus


Picks from Pickerington Shop local this holiday season


student spotlight On the Brain

Pickerington senior is a born leader while applying for neuroscience programs


on the table


All the Right Stuff

CBUS Pizza and its experienced pizzeria owner are making waves

around pickerington






luxury living

Recommended reads from Pickerington Public Library

Select real estate listings in the area PickeringtonMagazine

to EVERY homeowner and business in Pickerington and Violet Township

Photos from the community

On the cover: Photo by Jeffrey S. Hall Photography



Contact Gianna Barrett today for great rates!

614-572-1255 5

pickerington community calendar december 2019 / january 2020 Through Dec. 29 The Ohio Presidents: Surprising Legacies 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Tuesday-Friday; 1-4 p.m., Saturday-Sunday, Decorative Arts Center of Ohio, 145 E. Main St., Lancaster,

Learn interesting, possibly never-beforetold fun facts about the Ohio-born U.S. presidents and their first ladies.

Dec. 5 Yoga at Your Library 11 a.m.-noon, Sycamore Plaza Library, 7861 Refugee Rd.,

Dec. 6 Olde Village Holiday Gathering

Dec. 7 NC4K Reindeer Run 5K

5-8 p.m., Olde Pickerington Village,

8:45 a.m., Huber Park, 1520 Davidson Dr., Reynoldsburg,

After the tree lighting, walk over to Olde Pickerington Village for family-friendly events and activities like horse drawn wagon rides, ice carving demonstrations, cookie decorating and visiting with the man of hour, Santa Claus.

Support a great cause and stay fit when competing in this race. The event also features holiday music, giveaways and hot chocolate. Proceeds for the run will benefit kids and teens battling cancer during the holiday season.

Dec. 6 Pickerington-Violet Township Historical Society Open House

Dec. 7 Santa Saturday Ornament and Gift Tag Craft

5-8 p.m., Olde Pickerington Village, 15 E. Columbus St.,

2-4 p.m., Pickerington Public Library, 201 Opportunity Way,

Who says the library is just for checking out books? Start the day with cobra pose or locust pose at this mindful event.

During the annual Holiday Gathering, stop by this open house for tours and children’s activities.

Dec. 6-18 Dorothy Steiger Memorial Mitten Tree

Dec. 6-15 Pickerington Community Theatre presents Miracle on 34th Street

Pickerington City Hall, 100 Lockville Rd.,

Wigwam Theater, 10190 BlacklickEastern Rd. N.W.,

Pickerington Community Theatre showcases this classic holiday story for its winter production.

Dec. 7 Breakfast with Santa – Sold Out!

Kick off the holiday season with a tree lighting ceremony at 5 p.m. on Dec. 6 at City Hall. Afterward, embrace the season of giving by donating scarves, hats, mittens, gloves and other warm accessories for local families through Dec. 18.

8 a.m.; 9:30 a.m.; 11 a.m., Pickerington Senior Center, 150 Hereford Dr.,


Dec. 11 Make a Move! – Chess @ Your Library 6-7:30 p.m., Pickerington Public Library, 201 Opportunity Way,

Recommended for grades three through seven, let your kiddos enjoy a strategic game of chess with their peers. Chess boards and resources are available.

Submit Your Event

Do you have an event you would like to submit to our calendar? Send details and photos to lfreudenberg@

Apart from festive music, crafts and meeting Santa Claus, this annual event is also collecting non-perishable food items for the Pickerington Food Pantry. For each item a family brings, they will receive an entry into the gift basket drawing; up to five tickets per family.

Tickets for this year’s event are sold out, but you can bet it will return in 2020!

Mark your calendars for these community events Dec. 11-13 HER presents Fast Track Introduction: Sales 101 10 a.m.-4 p.m., HER Pickerington Office, 1450 Tussing Rd,.

Want to start a career in realty? This three-day class will introduce you to the world of real estate with informative lessons and experienced speakers.

Dec. 12 First Drafts Book Club 7-8 p.m., Combustion Brewery & Taproom, 80 W. Church St.,

Enjoy great food, good drinks and fascinating books at this book club. The December book, Exit West by Mohsin Hamid, tells a love story of two people living in a country teetering on civil war and their decision to head west.

Dec. 14 Coloring (and Cookies) 2-4 p.m., Sycamore Plaza Library, 7861 Refugee Rd.,

Coloring and cookies aren’t just for toddlers. Relieve some stress and enjoy delicious cookies at this peaceful event.

Dec. 31 Glass Town Countdown: Lancaster’s New Year’s Eve Party 8 p.m., The Mill Event Center, 431 S. Columbus St., Lancaster,

At midnight, watch the lighting and ascent of the giant glass globe, which is covered in more than 500 hand-blown ornaments. During the event, create your own glass globe which will be displayed in downtown Lancaster.

Jan. 4 Stuffed Animal Sleepover 12:30-1 p.m., Sycamore Plaza Library, 7861 Refugee Rd.,

Drop off your furry friend between Jan. 1 and Jan. 3. Then, on Jan. 4, learn about all the trouble and fun they got into.

Jan. 6 Planning Your Perfect Disney Vacation

Help local families enjoy a meal this holiday season by donating completed meal baskets, monetary contributions or by volunteering during the distribution of the baskets.

Enjoy a holiday-themed meeting where new guests can learn more about the VTWL.

Dec. 23-Jan. 5 Winter Break Pickerington Local Schools,

Pickerington Senior Helper We provide in-home help with: • Companionship • Meal preparation • Light housekeeping • Grooming and personal care • Shopping/appointments

Call us today! (614) 971-0893

Holiday wishes.

9 a.m.-noon, Pickerington Food Pantry, 70 Cross St.,

6:15 p.m., American Legion Post 283, 7725 Refugee Rd.,

Lisa Stoklosa, Owner

6-7 p.m., Sycamore Plaza Library, 7861 Refugee Rd.,

Dec. 15 Pickerington Food Pantry Holiday Baskets

Dec. 17 Violet Township Women’s League Monthly Meeting

Are you a Senior in need of a little help?

Going to Walt Disney World can be overwhelming and expensive. Learn all the tips and tricks for the most magical experience that’s also in your price range.

May the magic of the season bring you peace, love and joy. Happy Holidays to an incredible community!

Jan. 28 Violet Township Women’s League Monthly Meeting

Keely Weaver, Agent 705 Hill Rd N Pickerington, OH 43147 Business: 614-837-6700

6:15 p.m., American Legion Post 283, 7725 Refugee Rd.,

Enjoy an evening of pizza and games where new guests can learn more about the VTWL. 1708156

State Farm Bloomington, IL





Refugee Road Infrastructure Project Updates By Greg Butcher, PE, MPA Pickerington City Manager

• •

Additional lanes through the entire corridor including two turn lanes from Refugee to SR 256 in both directions. Curb and gutter along the entire length of the project. New roundabout at Fuller’s Way; this will be the City’s first roundabout. New bike path, providing access form SR 256 to the existing Blacklick Creek Trail.

Planned construction next year will include work mainly on the south side of Refugee Road and at the SR 256 and Fuller’s Way intersections. Similar to this year, barricades will be placed to provide safety for construction workers and separation from vehicles. There will 8

citydirectory Pickerington City Hall, 100 Lockville Rd. continue to be periodic isolated closures along the corridor as construction continues. Access for businesses will remain a priority. When necessary, message boards will be used to highlight specific construction activities.  The total project cost is estimated at $15 million, the largest project in the history of the City of Pickerington. Innovative funding strategies have provided more than $12 million in federal and state funding. Funding sources include the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission, Federal Highway Administration, Ohio Department of Transportation, Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services, and the Ohio Public Works Commission. Local funding from the City of Pickerington is estimated at $2.5 million, or less than 20 percent of the overall project cost. The City of Pickerington has strived to communicate project information through social media and its email, We invite questions, concerns and comments regarding this important project.

(All numbers prefixed with the 614 area code)

Building Services ..................... 833-2221 City Clerk/Council..................... 837-3974 City Manager........................... 837-3974 Development Services.............. 833-2204 Engineering Services ............... 833-2221 Finance Services...................... 837-3974 Human Resources.................... 837-3974 Income Tax Division.................. 837-4116 Mayor’s Office (Lee A. Gray)............................ 837-3974 Mayor’s Court.......................... 837-3974 Parks and Recreation............... 833-2211 Police Services......................... 575-6911 Service Department Streets.................................... 833-2292 Utility Billing............................. 833-2289 Utility Maintenance................... 833-2292 Water Plant.............................. 833-2290 Waste Water Plant.................... 837-6490 Water Reclamation.................. 837-6470

Photos courtesy of the City of Pickerington

As most Pickerington residents are aware, the Refugee Road corridor between Woodstock Avenue to the east and the City of Columbus (Wheatfield Drive) has been under construction for the past year. Engineering design for the project started in 2015. Construction commenced in 2018 with the relocation of underground utilities. While project delays due to weather and unforeseen underground utility conflicts have been frustrating to both the City and its residents, the project is scheduled for completion in late 2020. The updated Refugee Road will have the following components:

Season of Giving is Year-Round for Pickerington Residents It’s the season of giving, and one of the easiest and most impactful ways you can give is to a neighbor in need. Pickerington isn’t a stranger to this kind gesture – staff members at the City of Pickerington say they witness generosity often. The Utility Billing Department may not come to mind when giving donations, but it can have a big impact on a family’s life. “We’ve had people come in here on shut-off day and hand us extra cash and ask that we put it toward someone else’s (water) bill,” says clerk Tracy Zullo. “We’ve also had people come in that pulled a shut-off notice from a neighbor’s door and just wanted to take care of it for them.” It’s those acts of kindness that go a long way for someone trying to make ends meet. “It’s a very emotional thing having your water shut off,” says Zullo. “It’s not something we enjoy doing and it’s the hardest part of this job.” Sharon Leasure has worked for the City of Pickerington for 17 years and has seen many instances where people are in tears over their financial situation. “We know the people that struggle each month and so it’s a nice thing when someone steps in to help them out,” Leasure says. Both Leasure and Zullo say there is one family that comes in on the same day every year to help pay overdue bills for complete strangers. And Leasure was at the City when a local church gave $10,000 to cover past due bills. “Customers that were on the receiving end of that donation then came back later and wanted to pay it forward to someone else,” Leasure says. The Pickerington Parks and Recreation Department runs the Community Garden and there’s one plot that is truly all about community. Plot 46 belongs to the Fairfield County Master Gardeners. Gardener Keith Eichhorn says this year’s plot produced 140 pounds of fresh produce that was delivered to the Pickerington Food Pantry. “Since it was a challenging year weather-wise, it did not do quite as well as expected, but they did receive some

Remembering a Friend The City of Pickerington recently lost a good friend and community servant. Ted Hackworth passed away Sept. 16. Ted served Pickerington in many ways over the years, most recently as the Mayor’s representative to the Planning & Zoning Commission. He also served on City Council, was president of the Senior Center Board and was instrumental in bringing Lancaster-Fairfield Public Transit routes to Pickerington. He will be missed.

high-quality fresh produce (cabbage, carrots, onions) that was greatly appreciated by the people who work there,” Eichhorn says. “It is our pleasure to give back to the community this way.” Pickerington Zoning Officer Mike Magee says a big part of his job is responding to complaints from people about their neighbors. “I would say most of the calls I receive are about grass and trash,” he says. Magee says instead of calling him, he would like to see more people reach out to their neighbor and find out what’s going on in their life that may be preventing them from keeping up on things around their house. “There are a lot of people out there facing real challenges with their health, a death in the family, et cetera, and they could really benefit from a helping hand,” Magee says. Churches, school groups and civic organizations often contact the City and ask where they can help. Mayor’s Executive Assistant Tammy Sawyer coordinates all the volunteer projects. “Pickerington is a very generous community. We have a lot of people that call our office asking how they can serve. And while working with them on the big projects is great, I find some of the greatest rewards are in connecting neighbors to other neighbors,” Sawyer says. “You don’t always know what people are struggling with. One act of kindness can go a long way.”

Congratulations to Pickerington Police Officer Mercedes Gavins Gavins was recently awarded the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office STAR award – STAR represents Selflessness, Teamwork, Accountability, Respect. The officer should be of high ethics, good character, and goes above and beyond for the residents within their jurisdiction and Franklin County. Gavins has been with the PPD since 2015. Officer Mercedes Gavins (right) with Police Chief Tod Cheney at the 3rd Annual FCSO Law Enforcement Recognition Dinner. 9

News and Information From

Violet Township How to Get on the Nice List The Violet Township Fire Department and Pickerington Local Schools are once again teaming up to provide holiday assistance for children and families throughout the Pickerington and Fairfield County areas. This partnership has proven to be particularly successful in the past years. In 2018, we assisted 778 families for a total of 2,254 kids. Thanks to the generosity of the local schools, businesses and churches, our red toy collection boxes will be located at several sites throughout Canal Winchester, Pickerington and Reynoldsburg. The toy drive officially kicks off on Nov.

29 and runs through Dec. 24. If you would like to contribute, drop off a new, unwrapped toy in any Violet Township Fire Department toy drive box. You may also donate at any of the three Violet Fire stations. Items of particular need are gifts for middle- to high school-age children such as gift cards, electronics, cologne/perfume, etc. Due to the dedication of generous community members and leaders, Violet Township Fire Department and Pickerington Local Schools are able to make a difference in the lives of children and families during the holiday

Holiday Fire Safety

Girl Scout Troops from the Pickerington area will host the annual Toy Drive-Thru at Violet Fire Station 592, 8700 Refugee Rd., on Saturday, Dec. 7 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Donations may be dropped off as you drive through the fire station, where the fire trucks typically sit, without even getting out of your car. season. Thank you in advance for your continued support and we hope you and your family have a safe and happy holiday season.

Participate in the 12 Days of Holiday Fire Safety below to ensure a Safe and Happy Holiday Season!


Water fresh trees daily

It’s time to trim that Christmas tree, and if you’re using a real tree, buy a fresh tree and keep the base of the trunk in water at all times. Keep your tree away from any ignition source such as the fireplace, heaters or candles.


Check all sets of lights before decorating

Before you put lights on the tree or around the front window, check the cords closely. Discard any sets that are frayed or damaged.


Make sure you have working smoke alarms

With family and friends spending extra time at your home over the holidays, it’s a great time to check your smoke alarms. Start by replacing smoke alarms over 10 years old. Remember that you need working smoke alarms on every level of your home and outside all sleeping areas. Test your alarms to make sure they will alert you and your family if a fire occurs, giving you time to safely escape.


Make sure you have working carbon monoxide alarms


Carbon monoxide is an invisible, odorless gas that can quickly kill you. Thankfully, carbon monoxide alarms alert you of its presence. Replace any carbon monoxide alarms over seven years old.


Make sure everyone knows how to get out safely if a fire occurs

Develop and practice a home fire escape plan with all members of the household and make sure someone helps young children, older adults or anyone else that may need assistance to evacuate. Once outside, stay outside and call 911 from a cell phone or neighbor’s house.



Use extension cords wisely

People often use extension cords for that extra set of lights or the glowing Santa figurine. Extension cords should only be used as a temporary connection. Make sure cords never go under rugs as this can cause damage to the cord and cause a fire.

Give space heaters space

If you are using space heaters, remember to keep them at least three feet away from anything that can burn, such as curtains, upholstery or holiday decorations.

DAY 12 DAY 11 DAY 10



When you go out, blow out!

Candles can set the perfect mood for a holiday celebration, but remember to always blow out candles before leaving the room or going to bed. Keep lit candles safely away from children, pets and anything that can burn, such as curtains, upholstery or holiday decorations.

Keep matches and lighters out of the sight and reach of children

People often keep matches and lighters handy for holiday candles or fireplaces, but flammable devices can be deadly in the hands of children. Keep only one lighter or book of matches, and store them on you at all times or far from children.

Watch what you heat!

The holiday season is one of the busiest times of the year, which means it’s easy to get distracted from what we are doing. Cooking fires most commonly occur when cooking is left unattended. Always stay in the kitchen when cooking, especially if using oil or high temperatures. If a pot catches fire, carefully slide a tight-fitting lid over the pot to smother the flames and then turn off the heat.

Encourage smokers to smoke outside

Careless smoking is the leading cause of fatal fires. If you do allow smoking indoors, use large, deep ashtrays that can’t be knocked over and make sure cigarette butts are properly extinguished.

There’s more to responsible drinking than taking a cab home

With all the festive cheer this time of year, keep a close eye on anyone attempting to cook or smoke while under the influence of alcohol. Alcohol is a common factor in many fatal fires.


Recapping the Day of ATHENA Workshop and Awards Luncheon The annual Day of ATHENA Workshop and Awards Luncheon was held at the Violet Township Wigwam Event Center on Oct. 4 with more than 90 guests in attendance. Since 1998, the Pickerington Area Chamber of Commerce has hosted the ATHENA awards, which recognize community leaders who exhibit professional excellence, are dedicated to improving the quality of life in their community, and serve as role models for young women both personally and professionally. In addition to the ATHENA Leadership Award, other award categories include the Emerging ATHENA Award and the Youth ATHENA Award. Cheryl Ricketts, the 2018 ATHENA Leadership Award Recipient, presented a morning workshop, titled Becoming an ATHENA Leader, before the start of the awards luncheon. The awards ceremony then started with the presentation of the Youth ATHENA Award, which was given to Jordyn Nevers from Pickerington High School Central. Among the other Youth ATHENA Award nominees were Anna Crumbacher, Elise Drager, Lauren Gill, Maya Norwood, Peyton Roberts and Eliza Stoner. The Emerging ATHENA Award, which is open to those ages of 21 to 39, was presented to Jessica Ayres from Pickerington Pharmacy. Jessica is a pharmacy technician by trade, and serves as a role model to others in her field, as well as volunteering with organizations such as the Violet Township Fire Department Annual Toy Drive and the Violet Festival. The other nominee for the Emerging ATHENA Award was Kevin Woodard of Woodard Inspections & Services. The 2019 ATHENA Leadership Award was presented to Lori Eisel. As President of 12

Arcadia Financial Partners, Lori provides expert financial services to her clients, with a focus on women as they journey through widowhood and divorce. Lori is a true believer in servant leadership, and exhibits that trait in all aspects of her life. The other nominees for the ATHENA Leadership Award were K. Zulene Adams with Z Promotions, and Kim Shook with Fairhope Hospice and Palliative Care. Congratulations to all of the nominees and recipients of the 2019 ATHENA awards.

How to Reach Us Violet Township Administrative Offices 10190 Blacklick-Eastern Rd. Pickerington, OH 43147 614-575-5556 Violet Township Fire Stations Phone 614-837-4123 Fire Chief: Michael Little #592: 8700 Refugee Rd. #591: 21 Lockville Rd. #593: 2365 Taylor Park Dr. Violet Township Service Center Phone: 614-382-5979 490 Center St. Pickerington, OH 43147


By Lydia Freudenberg

Women Raising a Community The Violet Township Women’s League celebrates 20 years of success

The 2020 VT WL 20th annual Scholarship Lun and Style Sh cheon ow is set for April 18 at the Jefferso n and Country Golf Club in Blacklick.

The VTWL’s recent 20th anniversary celebration for its members.

Photos courtesy of the VTWL


hen Nancy Colegrove of Pickerington joined the Violet Township Women’s League in 2015, she probably didn’t imagine how fast she’d climb the ladder. Colegrove first discovered the group after hearing about its annual Scholarship Luncheon and Style Show held each spring, which has awarded scholarships to 45 students totaling $91,000 since the luncheon’s inception in 2000. With a passion for giving back and previous experience in the fashion industry, Colegrove was intrigued by the event and got inspired to join VTWL. “I wanted to join a group of women in the community that help the community,” she says.

Charter members from left to right: Mary Lou Tate, Connie McClellan, Ann Cradduck, Kathleen Murphy, Nancy Mack, Jan Powers and Gert Stacoffe 13

Less than three years later, by 2018, Colegrove was elected president of the organization – a position she still holds today. Still, Colegrove is modest. She says her contributions as president are still very new and that previous leaders have shaped the path for success – specifically, 20 years of success – as the VTWL kicks off its milestone anniversary. The largest contributing factors to the group’s success are, without a doubt, its service and outreach projects. The VTWL has contributed to more than 60 organizations supporting underserved families in the area. Projects include working with cancer patients, the Special Olympics, planning cookouts and parties, donating school supplies, holding a Dress for Success event, and much more. “I’m always amazed because (the members) have such huge hearts and kindness runs in their DNA,” Colegrove From left to right: Sharon Greedy, Bonnie Evans, Shirley Coburn and Sandy Laramee. says. “No matter what we try to do or try to accomplish, it’s a team effort, always. And (the members) always exceed expectations.” It’s not all service, though. Sometimes, members have fun purely for the sake of fun. VTWL hosts special interest groups for its members, like Lit Chick, a book club; Knitting & Needlework; and Saturday Night Out.

From left to right: Susan Lobdell, Irene Katsares, Camille Baker, Linda Beal, Becky Ashcroft and Jenny Ruff.

“(We) are an organization of enthusiastic women from all walks of life, cultures and ages, (who) also enjoy friendships,” Colegrove says. If you have the opportunity to speak to Colegrove, you’ll easily see that her courage and drive align with the passion and efforts of the VTWL. She describes the organization as a quiet giant; more than 100 women work diligently every day, making a veritable impact on the community. As for the next 20 years, Colegrove promises more success. And if you’ve been paying attention to the VTWL, you should know to expect more zeal and empathy, too. “The possibilities for future undertakings are endless,” she says. “We plan to keep on doing what we already do: care for the community and each other in the spirit of kindness and compassion.”

Melissa Wilde presenting Trustee Proclamation to Nancy Colegrove. 14

Lydia Freudenberg is an editor. Feedback welcome at lfreudenberg@

Powerhouse Presidents Since 1999, the VTWL has seen 16 presidents, including Colegrove. Linda Fersch, Karen Virden and Jane Clagg are recent predecessors, and their love and dedication to the VTWL is obvious to this day. Read as they reflect on their years serving alongside fellow women to help build up the community.

Linda Fersch

“While only a member for 12 of those 20 years, I have been inspired by the friendships I have made, the knowledge gained from the programs and the opportunities afforded to contribute to the betterment of our community,” Fersch says. “I feel fortunate to be a member of this group of enthusiastic women.” Fersch explains how the Scholarship Luncheon and Style Show provides lifelong lessons for its scholarship recipients. “A student does not have to be a top scholar to win one of the several scholarships, as service to the community and helping others is the main criteria for awarding the scholarship,” she says. “Through this, we are encouraging community service and instilling the value and benefit of helping others.”

Karen Virden

“I had some close friends who were members, and they shared with me some of the service projects done Most Trusted Ad.pdf



by VTWL,” Virden says. “Since I have always been interested in service to the community, this sounded like my kind of group.” Virden says the Scholarship Luncheon and Style Show isn’t just impactful for the students, but also for the more than 100 businesses that support the event. “We hope to make this 2020 (Scholarship Style Show) bigger and better than last year. My friend and I solicit businesses in Canal Winchester for donations and these businesses have been very kind to us over the years. Each January we hear, ‘Here come the purple ladies,’” she says, referencing the group’s – and community’s – main color.

Jane Clagg

“I feel like the ladies in the organization are like family,” says Clagg, who joined the group in 2006. “The social activities and community service projects are important to me.” Clagg says she’s excited to award more scholarships at the 20th annual Scholarship Luncheon and Style Show, as it’s always a wonderful event. “I am so proud to be celebrating 20 years, and to hear all that we have done in the past 20 years is truly inspiring,” Clagg says. “The VTWL is making a huge impact on the community.”

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Reining in the Holidays A Pickerington holiday staple welcomes its favorite attendees: reindeer


ful, so if for one night everyone can just have fun and be a kid again, it makes it all or most of us, Christmastime hap- worthwhile.” pens in December – period. However, for Pickerington Village Asso- Special (Flying?) Guests ciation’s Pam Good, Christmas is all year Good isn’t the only one who thinks long. The planning for the Olde Village about Christmas practically all year long. Holiday Gathering starts in the warm seaKevin Kleer never imagined that his son and kicks off Dec. 6. cattle ranch, Kleerview Farm in Bellville, “We are always looking for new things would one day be full of Christmas trees that can be incorporated,” Good says. and reindeer. He and his wife were dairy “This year’s event will include a lighted farmers for 24 years before selling off their holiday stroll past holiday inflatables that cows and planting Christmas trees inline the street.” stead. And with prior experience with an It’s been a joy for the Pickerington Vil- animal farm, they thought, “What creature lage Association to see the event grow over would perfect our holiday experience?” the years. Good can’t say enough about Cue the reindeer. the positivity, joy and spirit it brings to the “It took us a few years to find some,” community. Kleer says. “They’re really hard to find.” “It just makes you smile,” she says. After a long search for reindeer, he “We all know that holidays can be stress- found two in Michigan and brought them

By Mallory Arnold


down to the farm. They are thriving, living happily in the old cattle barn and enjoying visits from Christmas tree customers. Shortly after the purchase though,

“They’re all named; we raise them like dogs,” Kleer says, laughing as a reindeer gives a loud cawhuff in the distance. “That’s what they’re like.” Kleer will be attending the Old Village Holiday Gathering for his second year, reindeers in tow, of course. He loves seeing attendees light up when they see his herd, and notes that it’s not just kids who are dazzled. “We have adults come up to us and ask, ‘What really are these animals?’ because they believe that reindeer are fictional animals,” he says. “It happens every year!” There will be a single pen at the Old Village Holiday Gathering where attendees can get close and even pet the reindeer – like Kleer says, they oftentimes act like dogs, so they love attention. Think it can’t get any cuter? Kleer plans to bring baby reindeer. “It’s really for everyone,” he says.

Kleer began to breed the reindeer, and now he has a total of 11 that he brings Mallory Arnold is an associate editor. to events – topping even old Saint Nick’s Feedback welcome at marnold@ herd by two.

Bet Ya Didn’t Know • Both male and female reindeers grow antlers. • Their noses are well-adapted for cold weather – they warm the air the reindeers breathe before it hits their lungs. • Reindeer are high maintenance: they’re not native to Ohio’s flora or fauna, so they’re susceptible to parasites and sickness. • When reindeer antlers are growing, they are covered in velvet – similar in appearance to the material we wear, but otherwise quite different. This protects their antlers until they’re ready to shed them off. • They like to eat herbs, ferns, mosses, grasses, shoots, fungi and leaves. You can still leave carrots out on Christmas Eve – they’re like candy for reindeer! • While only Santa’s reindeer can fly, all can run up to 50 miles per hour.

614-531-2050 47 W. Columbus Street Pickerington, Ohio 43147


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in focus

Picks from Pickerington Shop local this holiday season

Porter’s Coffee House and Bakery

Resale Furniture and Antiques

The locally-owned Porter’s offers delicious cinnamon rolls, seasonal coffee and much more. Give One Line Coffee to any coffee lover, a gift card to your sweettoothed friend, or a Porter’s T-shirt to a true fan.

For the antique enthusiasts on your holiday shopping list, stop by Resale Furniture for unique treasures. Browse through majestic rocking horses, large furniture pieces and vintage decorations.

Picktown Art Works

Owner Desirae DeBellis is cultivating quite the team spirit. Represent the Pickerington High School North Panthers or the Pickerington High School Central Tigers with these handmade wooden door decorations. Snag one sign for just $32 during the holiday special.


Combustion Brewery & Taproom

Who doesn’t love deals on beer? At Combustion, purchase a Mug Club membership and enjoy $1 off pints all day, every day; $2 off growler and crowler refills every day of the week; 10 percent off merchandise; early invites and discounts on tickets for events; and so much more.

19 WEST Salon

A new hair studio is in town – sleek and trendy but more than #hairgoals. The shop also features a collection of handmade goods by Hive to Hand. From grooming cream to beard oil and natural lip balm, Hive to Hand uses locally-sourced honey for its refreshing and natural products.

Pet Toys & Accessories Pet Gift Baskets Pet Supplies Pet Sitting

We’ve Got Your Pet’s Needs & Wants Covered!

Spend 30 and Get $5 OFF $

Promo code Pick19

Baskets of Nature LLC

The family pup deserves a holiday gift (or two), too! Shop toys, treats, collars, grooming products and more, and Baskets of Nature will tie it all up with a ribbon for the perfect holiday present.

Baskets of Nature


445 Westview Dr - Lancaster OH


Kula Yoga & Wellness

Genuwine’s Vintage Dining

For longtime yogis or beginners, Kula is the newest yoga studio in Olde Pickerington that also offers wellness sessions. For those looking to represent the studio, the incredibly warm Kula pompom knit hat is a must. Shop from several Sekoia products, including its ritual oil and calming candles.

Everyone needs a night out on the town. At Genuwine’s, guests can enjoy Italian cuisine, seafood and other spectacular dishes for an elegant evening. Give your loved ones to a unique holiday gift or purchase a gift card to treat your favorite couple to a luxurious dinner.

Edward Warren Jewelers

Sam the Snowman from Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer sings the truth – “Ev’ryone wishes for silver and gold.” At Edward Warren, it’s not just about engagement rings and wedding bands. Shop through beautiful gold, silver and rose gold bracelets.


Hello Style Mobile Boutique

Local Lularoe representative is making shopping easier. Shop from single items or outfits, stop by her home boutique, host a truck shop, or watch a live sale to find an assortment of trendy garments and accessories.

student spotlight

By Zoë Glore

Student Spotlight features a student from an area high school in every issue.

On the Brain Pickerington senior acts as a born leader while applying for neuroscience programs


ave you ever questioned someone’s behavior or wondered why they did something inappropriate? Pickerington Central High School senior Kyle Ayisi has. And he wants to find some answers. Ayisi’s interest in neuroscience started a few years ago after attending MD Camp at The Ohio State University College of Medicine, which is designed for young, minority scholars with an interest in medicine. After seeing a presentation on behavior, something just clicked. “I did a little bit of research after (attending camp) on why we do the things we do and it just fascinates me,” says Ayisi. “Sometimes our own minds can fail us. I’m just interested in learning to the fullest extent what we, as humans, have in our heads.” Right now, he is unsure if he wants to pursue research or continue his education to receive a more advanced degree. But now, a soon-to-be high school grad, Ayisi is enjoying every opportunity he has to study cognitive science. Pickerington Central offers AP psychology, which Ayisi is taking full advantage of before graduation. Ayisi also stays busy as class president. While the position means he was recognized as a leader among his peers, he enjoys the opportunity to offer advice to younger students, too. One of his largest pieces of advice is to get involved. Ayisi balances college-level classes, marching band, choir, German club, student council, family and friends, all while applying for college. He says it all works well together, as difficult as the extensive schedule seems. “I’m pretty lucky because a lot of what I do doesn’t clash too much. Mostly, it’s just prioritizing things,” he says. “Sometimes it’s knowing you have to miss some things for others. I enjoy doing a lot of things, so it’s not really a matter of balancing these things, but keeping myself involved.”


As busy as he sounds, Ayisi keeps organized. He attributes a lot of that to his parents, saying they inspire him to be the best version of himself, along with an impressive level of selfmotivation. Being goal-oriented also helps when applying for colleges. Ayisi is grateful to already know what field he wants to go into – all that’s left is choosing the right school. “My top destinations would be Johns Hopkins, Princeton – which feels like kind of a reach for me, but it’s on there – University of Chicago, OSU, Miami of Ohio or Case Western,” says Ayisi. “I want that individual college experience, … so I think I want to get out of the state.” His leadership skills are going to come in handy when he goes off to school, too. He says being a leader is a two-way street, and he learns just as much from his colleagues in the groups as they might learn from him.

Kyle Ayisi enjoys spending time with his friends at events such as school dances.

“I love being able to bring people together for one common cause, getting things done. I love being a role model for people but learning from them too,” Ayisi says. “It’s not just about one person telling someone what to do, but listening to the ideas of the other person.” Ayisi hopes for leadership opportunities in college and to meet like-minded people, just as he has at Pickerington Central. But most of all, he’s excited for the personal growth college so often cultivates. “With all the things I’m involved in, I want to meet people with similar interests who I can get together with on a daily basis,” he says. “I feel like college is definitely an opportunity to discover who you are.”

Ayisi and his friends show their support for Historically Black Colleges and Universities. 22

Zoë Glore is an assistant editor. Feedback welcome at

Photos courtesy of Kyle Ayisi

Utilizing his leadership skills, Ayisi offers his insight to a variety of groups throughout the community.

on the table

By Rocco Falletti

All the Right Stuff CBUS Pizza and its experienced pizzeria owner are making waves


or as long as James Catalfino can remember, his life has revolved around pizza. His father was the owner of Catalfino’s Pizza, which opened in 1974, and in 1995 the father/ son duo became partners after opening a second location on Refugee Road. Catalfino’s soon became a local favorite, and life was good for the duo. But in 2013, just a year after being diagnosed with cancer, Catalfino’s father died, and everything changed. Catalfino made the difficult decision to close his father’s shop to transition to a career in real estate. “Even when he was sick, he was still showing up and working 90-hour weeks,” Catalfino says. “He produced and showed up every day and worked.” In Pickerington, and even in neighboring communities, the competition between pizza shops is fierce and critics are tough. Residents know good pizza. So, running a pizzeria, even for a seasoned pie maker like Catalfino, is risky. “People are making some real good pizza,” Catalfino says. “You are going to have to bring it or you aren’t going to make it here. With that type of competition, it’s a tough deal.” This year, Catalfino and a busi“Pay attention to what you do with your dough. Making it ness partner rose to the challenge and is one thing, how you treat it after is a whole other thing,” opened a new shop, CBUS Pizza. It may not bear the family name, but Catalfino Catalfino says. “You can’t just roll it out and make a pizza plans to carry on his father’s legacy to right away. Figure out how the bread is supposed to rise and bring something uniquely delicious how you get flavor.” and passion-filled to local tables. “My dad always said, ‘There really are no secrets; if you put crap on top of a great crust, you’ll still sell a crap CBUS Pizza is located at 5000 Gen- Rocco Falleti is an associate editor. pizza,’” Catalfino says, laughing. “Ev- der Rd., Canal Winchester. Feedback welcome at rfalleti@ erything counts with pizza; buy good stuff and you’ll sell good stuff.”

Photos courtesy of CBUS Pizza Facebook

Pro Tip by Catalfino


Around Pickerington Trick or Treat Events Throughout Pickerington Photos courtesy of the City of Pickerington and Pickerington Village Association


Want your snapshots to appear in print? Send your high-resolution photos to lfreudenberg@cityscene along with your name and a caption!


Enchanted Princess Party Sept. 28 Photos courtesy of the City of Pickerington


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Submitted by Pickerington Public Library staff

What’s under our tree for gift giving this year? Teen Reads I Know You Remember by Jennifer Donaldson Ruthie returns home after three years away to find that her best friend, Zahra, has gone missing. As Ruthie investigates her friend’s disappearance, she finds that the Zahra she knew has changed, leaving rumors and a truth that might be better left undiscovered and in the past.

ties and illnesses including blindness, nut allergies, ADHD and dyslexia. Sonia shares that kids with conditions don’t always feel ready to explain, and sometimes they may not be comfortable answering questions about themselves.

Adult Reads Let it Snow: A Novel by Nancy Thayer For readers that love a good holiday Hallmark movie. Meet Christina Antonioni as she prepares for the holidays in her enchanting Nantucket toy shop. Sprinkle in trouble with a landlord, a budding friendship with the landlord’s granddaughter and, of course, a charming, handsome, eligible, bachelor. This has all the makings of a delightful holiday read.

A Stone Sat Still by Brendan Wenzel To all appearances, the stone is just an ordinary rock. But to the creatures that happened by, it is so much more. Stunning Jackpot by Nic Stone illustrations and a story A $100 million that begs to be read out loud, this is a comwinning lottery ticket panion book to the Caldecott Honor win- Country Music: An Illustrated goes unclaimed at the ner They All Saw a Cat. History by Dayton Duncan, store where you work based on the documentary film – what would you do? Middle School Chapter Books by Ken Burns Rico decides to look for Pay Attention, Carter Jones by A beautifully ilthe owner in hopes of Gary D. Schmidt lustrated history of receiving a reward. She Who inherits a butAmerica’s popular muteams up with ultra-rich ler? One shows up on sical genre, this book Zan, who also saw the the doorstep on the first features singers and suspected winner. Their day of middle school and songwriters that have mission leads to conflict over their differ- rings the doorbell, now entertained and fasciing socioeconomic statuses, but could also Carter has to adjust to a nated longtime country flower a potential friendship. Which direc- new adult in his life and a music fans. Companion to the eight-part tion will they take? Friendship or division? know-it-all butler! Lucky film series that aired on PBS in September. for this broken family, Picture Books this butler knows how Grumpy Monkey Party Time! by to mend with insight and Suzanne Lang compassion. Think an updated Mary PopGrumpy Monpins who plays cricket and teaches 12-yearkey is back! Poor old kids to drive cars. Jim Panzee, he was doing just fine unThe Remarkable Journey of Coytil he received the ote Sunrise by Dan Gemeinhart party invitation from Do judge a book by Porcupine. Grumpy its cover with this book! Pickerington Public Library Monkey doesn’t like This book is quirky and Visit us in person and online: to dance and, come full of heart – just like the to find out, neither does Water Buffalo. More heroine Coyote Sunrise. and more animals speak up about their con- Coyote and her father cerns. With help from Grumpy Monkey, travel the country in a Pickerington Public Library this hilarious book teaches kids about self- converted school bus tryMain acceptance and managing social anxiety. ing to escape the grief of 201 Opportunity Way losing their family to a Monday-Thursday 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Just Ask!: Be Different, Be Brave, car accident. When CoySaturday/Sunday 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Be You by Sonia Sotomayor ote finds out her childhood park is being Sunday 1-5 p.m. This nonfiction picdemolished, she convinces her dad to head Sycamore Plaza Library ture book introduces back that direction to retrieve a time capsule 7861 Refugee Rd. disabilities in positive, that she, her mother and sisters buried five Monday-Thursday 9 a.m.-8 p.m. diverse ways. Sonia and days before their accident. Will they make it Saturday/Sunday 9 a.m.-6 p.m. her friends encourage back in time? Will she and her father be able Sunday 1-5 p.m. readers to just ask, as to communicate and move forward from they introduce disabilitheir past? 28

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Pickerington December 2019/January 2020  

Pickerington December 2019/January 2020