Ohio Cooperative Living - December - Mid-Ohio

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OHIO

DECEMBER 2021

COOPERATIVE Mid-Ohio Energy Cooperative

Merry and bright Ohio lights up for the holidays

ALSO INSIDE Youth Tour chaperones Food gifts The truth behind weather myths


COOPERATIVES RETURN MONEY TO THEIR MEMBERS!

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That’s right — cooperatives are not-for-profit, so when there’s money left after bills are paid, it is returned to members as “capital credits,” or “patronage capital.”

Annually, Ohio electric cooperatives return about $35 MILLION to members.

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Nationwide,,since 1990, cooperatives have returned $16 BILLION to members.

HOW CAPITAL CREDITS WORK Members paying their bill generate the operating revenue for the cooperative. When all the bills are paid, the extra money at the end of each year, called “margins,” is allocated to each member. The cooperative’s board approves a return to members, known as “retiring” members’ capital credits.

ohioec.org/purpose


OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING • DECEMBER 2021

INSIDE FEATURES

24 A SHARP BUSINESS MODEL Simplicity and quality have been the rule at Warther Cutlery for more than a century.

27 NIGHT AND DAY Franklin Park Conservatory in Columbus has two distinct holiday personalities.

30 12 NIGHTS OF CHRISTMAS Ohio is aglow with evening light shows to celebrate the season — we picked a dozen that are sure to make your Yuletide merry and bright.

34 O CHRISTMAS TREE It may not have been the first, but August Imgard’s festive spruce sparked a longrunning Wooster tradition that lives long after his passing. Cover image on most editions: Bright glass ornaments adorn the grounds each holiday season at Franklin Park Conservatory in Columbus (photograph by Rebecca Seum). This page: August Imgard, a German immigrant, was one of the first people in the country to decorate an evergreen tree to celebrate Christmas. His home is now the rectory at St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception Church in Wooster, where Father Stephen Moran displays an old-fashioned tree that would make Imgard proud (photograph by Damaine Vonada).

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  1


UP FRONT

T

his past year was one of transition. COVID-19 began to have less effect on our lives through the year as vaccines became available, and many businesses returned to more normal operations. The federal government underwent a shift in power between the parties and adjusted its focus to different priorities. The recovery in economic activity was hampered by shortages of materials and labor as businesses tried to recover production capacity and supply chains struggled to supply needed goods. The price of goods and services we use in everyday life surged higher, as inflation reached levels not seen in decades. That’s a lot of big changes for one year — and we’ll continue to work through these issues in the coming year. Some things, though, remained consistent. Your electric cooperatives continued to provide a reliable supply of electricity at relatively the same price as past years. While we may not be completely immune from upward pressure on prices, our diverse mix of fuels and our steady approach to investing in needed infrastructure allowed us to keep the cost of electricity mostly steady. Once again in 2021, you scored your electric cooperative at near-record-high levels for consumer satisfaction. Thanks for noticing. Last winter, we witnessed the devastating consequences of frigid weather in Texas, including prolonged outages and sky-high electricity prices. Ohio’s electric cooperatives are doing everything possible to prepare for whatever weather this winter brings. However, we continue to be only a small part of the overall electric system that serves this part of the country. Both fuel supplies and materials to build and repair electric systems are more scarce than we would like across much of the country. Preparations for this winter once again make it obvious how important a robust and diverse electric supply system is to our well-being. Thanks to each of you for your continued support and patronage of your electric cooperative. We wish you and yours a blessed and happy holiday season.

2   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021

Pat O’Loughlin PRESIDENT & CEO OHIO’S ELECTRIC COOPERATIVES

Your electric cooperatives continued to provide a reliable supply of electricity at relatively the same price as past years.


DECEMBER 2021 • Volume 64, No. 3

Ohio Rural Electric Cooperatives 6677 Busch Blvd. Columbus, OH 43229 614-846-5757 www.ohiocoopliving.com

4 DEPARTMENTS

Patrick O’Loughlin President & CEO Jeff McCallister Managing Editor Rebecca Seum Associate Editor Anita Cook Graphic Designer Contributors: Colleen Romick Clark, Victoria Ellwood, Getty Images, Hunter Graffice, W.H. “Chip” Gross, Catherine Murray, James Proffitt, Margie Wuebker, and Damaine Vonada. OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING (USPS 134-760; ISSN 2572-049X) is published monthly by Ohio Rural Elec­tric Co­op­eratives, Inc. It is the official com­munication link be­tween the elec­­­­tric co­operatives in Ohio and West Virginia and their mem­bers. Subscription cost for members ranges from $5.52 to $6.96 per year, paid from equity accruing to the member. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to editorial and advertising offices at: 6677 Busch Boulevard, Columbus, OH 43229-1101. Periodicals postage paid at Pontiac, IL 61764, and at additional mailing offices. Nothing in this publication may be reproduced in any manner without written permission from Ohio Rural Electric Cooperatives, Inc. All rights reserved. The fact that a product is advertised in Ohio Cooperative Living should not be taken as an en­dorse­ment. If you find an advertisement mis­leading or a product unsatisfactory, please not­ify us or the Ohio Attorney General’s Of­fi ce, Consumer Protection Sec­tion, 30 E. Broad St., Col­um­bus, OH 43215. Periodicals postage paid at Colum­bus, OH, and at additional mailing offices.

4 POWER LINES Watchful eyes: Youth Tour participants often describe the trip as a profound experience. So do the chaperones.

8

8 WOODS, WATERS, AND WILDLIFE

Weather ... or not: A veteran forecaster explains the myths — and truths — about Ohio weather.

12

12 CO-OP PEOPLE Caterer on wheels: The folks at Red Barn Caterers bring the whole kitchen to the job.

15 GOOD EATS The gift of food: When you

15

need a present for the person who has everything.

19 LOCAL PAGES News and information from your electric cooperative.

37 CALENDAR

For all advertising inquiries, contact

What’s happening: December/

Cheryl Solomon

January events and other things to do around Ohio.

American MainStreet Publications 847-749-4875 | cheryl@amp.coop

Cooperative members: Please report changes of address to your electric cooperative. Ohio Cooperative Living staff cannot process address changes. Alliance for Audited Media Member Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

37

40 MEMBER INTERACTIVE Christmas morning: Readers share some memorable pictures from holidays past.

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Visit Ohio Cooperative Living magazine online at www.ohiocoopliving.com! Read past issues and watch videos about our articles or our recipes. Our site features an expanded Member Interactive area where you can share your stories, recipes, and photos and find content submitted by other co-op members across the state. DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  3


POWER LINES

Watchful eyes Youth Tour participants often describe the trip as a profound experience. So do the chaperones. BY HUNTER GRAFFICE

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hen Ohio’s electric cooperatives send about 40 high school students on a weeklong Youth Tour trip to Washington, D.C., each year, it’s often a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the students to not only tour the nation’s capital from a perspective that not all visitors are privy to, but also to meet and interact with other co-op students from around the country. The trip, however, also provides a unique experience for the chaperones, who get that glimpse of the workings of the capital and also bear witness to the incredible impact the trip has on the students under their watch. Missy Kidwell, senior service specialist at Consolidated Cooperative in Mount Gilead, is assistant director of Ohio’s Youth Tour program. She had been involved in the process of selecting students to attend the trip for several years before she decided to attend as a chaperone. “Being able to see these students start out as strangers but then cultivate a lifelong friendship by the end of the week was pretty amazing,” she says. “I always knew it was an important experience, but didn’t realize exactly how special it was until I saw it in person.” Peter Niagu, energy advisor at Paulding Putnam Electric Cooperative in Paulding, chaperoned with his wife, Sabrina, in 2015 and 2016. He was similarly enthusiastic about the experience. “Most of these kids had been to D.C. in 8th grade, but the weeklong trip with Youth Tour is different,” he says. “You get to see them have the opportunity to become leaders.”

4   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021

Once the bus pulls away from the Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives headquarters in Columbus, chaperones and students alike immediately begin to learn more about their cooperative, their country, and each other. “The trip really challenged beliefs I held before I went,” Kidwell says. “I think adults often criticize the youth for their technology use, but I saw firsthand that they aren’t just obsessed with their phones. They are exposed to so much more than most of us were at that age, and technology just helps them navigate that. They’re curious, and they want a better understanding of the world and their country, and that was very apparent and surprising to me on the trip.” Some of the teens also discover — or develop — an interest in politics, leading them to declare political science majors in college or aspirations for law school.

Chaperones often find themselves right in the middle of things on Youth Tour, as Ashley Oakley did with this group at the National Botanical Gardens, Peter and Sabrina Niagu did at the National Zoo, and Missy Kidwell did in front of the U.S. Capitol (top photos).


Students also attend an event where they meet with cooperative students from other states, which often evolves into a rollicking display of state pride. “You’ve got these groups of kids representing cooperatives in 47 or 48 different states,” Niagu says. “It was really neat to see the pride in the kids as they mingle and compete to see who can chant about their state the loudest.” Youth Tour is a bonding experience, for participants and chaperones alike.

One of the students’ most intriguing opportunities is the chance to ask questions of one of their representatives on Capitol Hill, and chaperones are often blown away by the questions asked by the youth. “I thought the students might be intimidated to ask a question to a government official, but they absolutely shocked me,” says Ashley Oakley, executive assistant at Logan County Electric Cooperative in Bellefontaine, who chaperoned the 2019 trip. “Their questions show a desire to really understand their leaders. They want to know who they are and what they stand for, and I was really impressed by that.”

Not only does the trip provide opportunity for the students to grow and learn together, but the chaperones develop friendships as well. “I still talk to other chaperones to this day,” Oakley says. “The trip allowed me to interact with individuals within the cooperative world that I otherwise wouldn’t. I was able to form connections with people who I wouldn’t typically talk to on a daily basis, like engineers, and learn more about their side of cooperative work.” The chaperones all conveyed sincere appreciation and gratitude toward the cooperatives for the profound experience. “The students come back with so much more knowledge and get to grow as leaders on the trip,” Kidwell says. “They walk away with a greater understanding of their cooperative and a different perspective on life because of the trip.” “I didn’t fully grasp just how important the cooperative world is to our kids and how much cooperatives are doing to make this possible for our outstanding students and for their future,” Niagu says. Oakley also praised the trip and encouraged everyone eligible to apply. “Youth Tour has such a big impact on these students as individuals — on their dreams, their goals, and what they can provide in leadership,” she says. “The trip showed me what a bright future we have ahead for our cooperatives and our communities.”

Youth Tour participants often get to meet their congressional representatives, and chaperones have a front-row seat.

YOUTH TOUR 2022 is scheduled for June 18–24. High school students are encouraged to contact their electric cooperative for more information or to apply to attend.

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  5


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Weather … or not? Veteran forecaster explains the myths — and truths — about Ohio weather. STORY AND PHOTOS BY W.H. “CHIP” GROSS

M

eteorologist Jym Ganahl has never lacked for moxie. Growing up in Iowa, he walked into the local TV station when he was 17 and told the manager he could forecast the weather better than their current weatherman. Surprisingly, the manager eventually agreed and hired Ganahl to work six nights a week during his college years — kick-starting a professional meteorology career that has spanned more than half a century. After college, Ganahl relocated to Ohio, where he worked for WCMH-TV, the Columbus NBC affiliate, and eventually became their head meteorologist. “I actually retired on the day of my 50th anniversary of doing weather but became so bored and depressed the following year that I just knew I had to get back to work and do it again,” he says.

8   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021

Ganahl now forecasts for WSYX-TV in Columbus, the local ABC affiliate. A personal interest of his has always been weather folklore, which he occasionally uses to spice up his central Ohio prognostications. “For instance,” says Ganahl, “the following folklore item has to do with this time of year, the holiday season: A green Thanksgiving means a white Christmas or A white Thanksgiving means a green Christmas. It has to do with the jetstream, which fluctuates north and south, usually taking about a month to do so. As a result, if it’s warm in late November, it likely won’t be in December, a month later, and vice versa.” After the holidays, this next tidbit of weather folklore applies: As the days get longer, the cold gets stronger. “Beginning at the winter solstice, about Dec. 21 annually, the amount of daylight starts increasing again. But with it comes the coldest weather of the year, usually arriving about a month later, in January,” he says. He noted another truism that also has to do with the jetstream: Thunder in February means frost in May on the same day. “In other words, if it’s warm enough to thunder


in February, then March is usually cold. April is then, in turn, warm, and May will be cold enough for frost.” The following saying for sailors is no doubt familiar to most, but you may not know the reasoning behind it: Red sky at morning, sailors take warning; red sky at night, sailors’ delight. “High clouds are the beginning of a storm that may still be 500 to 1,000 miles away,” Ganahl says. “Most of Ohio’s weather fronts move west to east, so when the clouds are in the eastern sky at morning, the storm is closer to you, and when they are in the west in the evening, it is farther away.”

have kept a log of all my Lake Erie fishing trips — more than 20 per year — and time and again I’ve written after a less-than-successful trip: “Never trust an east wind!” Ganahl’s favorite weather folklore just may predict the amount of snow headed our way this winter: The number of foggy mornings in August is equal to the number of snowy days in winter.

For anglers, Ganahl has the following weather advice about when to go fishing:

“In 2019, we had nine fogs in August and nine snows over half an inch during the winter of 2019–2020, for a total of 11 inches,” Ganahl says. “In 2020, we had 14 fogs in August and 18 inches of snow during the 2020–2021 winter. In August 2021, we had 18 fogs, so this winter could be pretty snowy.

Wind from the north, a fisherman should not go forth. Wind from the east, the fish bite least. Wind from the south, blows the bait in the fish’s mouth. Wind from the west, the fish bite best.

“I don’t know why the fogs and snows line up as they do,” Ganahl concludes. “All I know is that the number of August fogs and the number of winter snows somehow seem to correlate.”

That saying tends to hold true because north and east winds generally blow cold fronts, which turn fish off from feeding; south and west winds generally blow warm fronts, which turn them on to feeding. It’s not that you can’t catch fish when the wind is contrary — but given a choice, go fishing on a south or west wind. For years, I

Lastly, Ganahl warns against hoping for too mild a winter because here in Ohio, If we don’t get winter in winter, we get winter in spring.

A bright red morning sky (this page) is often a sign of impending harsh weather because it usually means storm clouds are rolling in from the east; because of the regular 30-day fluctuation of the jetstream, February thunderstorms (opposite) are a good predictor of frosty days to come three months later.

Ask

chip!

Email Chip Gross with your outdoors questions at whchipgross@ gmail.com. Be sure to include “Ask Chip” in the subject of the email. Your question may be answered on www.ohiocoopliving.com!

www.ohiocoopliving.com DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  9


Reach 300,000 of your best customers OHIO

NOVEMBER 2021

COOPERATIVE Adams Rural Electric Cooperative

Winner, winner Reader’s recipe is easy as pie

ALSO INSIDE Carbon-free by 2035? A veteran’s tribute Deer death duels

Ohio Cooperative Living has been a valued presence in rural Ohio homes and businesses for the past 60 years. 83.4% of our readers have taken action from something they have seen in Ohio Cooperative Living.

Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives would like to thank the following donors for their generosity in supporting our efforts to fight blood cancers at the 2021 Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Light the Night Walk:

Platinum Sponsors Tom & Mary Beth Alban Willowbrook LLC

Gold Sponsors

ACES Bellaire Harbor Service LLC CoBank Cox’s Lawn & Vegetation Service Mesa Associates, Inc. National Rural Utilities Cooperative Finance Corporation New River Electrical Corporation

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Gordon & Trudy Iseminger Patrick & Nancy O’Loughlin UCC Corporation Edwin Wu

Bronze Sponsors Bethel Electric Rate Consulting Hi-Tech Weld Overlay Group Industrial Contractors Skanska Inc. Tom Kain Dennis Kovach Lehigh Hanson Midwest Ohio Custodial Management Sargent & Lundy Neal & Erin Shah

Their support was critical as our company exceeded its ambitious goal and was the top corporate fundraiser at the 2021 event!

10   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021


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CO-OP PEOPLE

Caterer on wheels

The folks at Red Barn Caterers bring the whole kitchen to the job. STORY AND PHOTOS BY MARGIE WUEBKER

W

hen Dan and Tawni Batdorf hit the road to their latest catering job, they bring a spacious kitchen with all the conveniences of home right along with them. This day, the Covington-area residents and their trusty staff have set up shop near the Tin Roof Barn near Houston, in the heart of Pioneer Rural Electric Cooperative territory. Wedding guests sniff the air, eagerly waiting to fill dinner plates from a line of covered chafing dishes. The Batdorfs started Red Barn Catering in 1998, working from the back of a pickup truck stacked with coolers, grills, and cooking utensils. One of their early engagements had them preparing 77 customer appreciation lunches for Ebberts Field Seeds, down the road from their Miami County farm. They still work that lunch, but today, the number of lunches they produce for the annual event has grown to about 630. “We definitely needed something more than a pickup truck bed,” Tawni Batdorf says with a chuckle. “We needed a place out of the rain and the sun and a place to wash dishes.” Dan Batdorf purchased a 25-foot trailer that had been used as a library bookmobile and set to work installing electricity, running water, cabinets, counters, sinks, and commercial kitchen appliances. It turned out to be a real boon for everyone involved, despite rather close quarters. When business kept growing, Tawni, who formerly taught food service operations at the Upper Valley Joint Vocational School in Piqua, knew what

12   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021


Tawni and Dan Batdorf bring their entire kitchen with them when they take on catering jobs with Red Barn Catering in western Ohio.

was needed. Soon, they added a 54-foot trailer, which required nearly three months of work to outfit. Now both trailers are pressed into service for larger jobs. “I told Dan early on he had to get us to the venue, make sure we have electricity and water, and prepare the meat,” she says. “Our helpers and I can handle the rest.” The 18-member staff includes a number of retired teachers, including Pioneer member Julie Roeth, who has served as chief cook the past six years. A cousin and three retired home economics teachers show up the day before an engagement to handle prep work ranging from stirring up corn casserole to creating mouth-watering desserts. The Batdorfs, who formerly raised hogs, admit that pork is still their specialty, with succulent pork loin their most requested entrée. Other popular offerings include pulled pork, shredded chicken, and Italian marinated chicken strips. Occasionally, a client will ask for vegetarian lasagna. Among the more popular side dishes are mashed potatoes, au gratin potatoes, coleslaw, baked beans, green beans, and applesauce. Desserts run the gamut from fruit crisp to peanut butter confections.

The trailers do not leave a venue until all the equipment has been washed and stowed away, appliances are wiped down, and floors are mopped. Everything comes home clean and ready for the next engagement. The last year or more has been difficult for the Batdorfs, as COVID-19 caused the cancellation of numerous scheduled events including weddings, reunions, and other large gatherings. One bright spot, however, has been the continuing popularity of fundraising meals for seven Future Farmers of America chapters in the area. One of the largest provided 800 pork loin dinners served via drive-through lanes at Fairlawn High School in rural Shelby County. A similar event provided 770 meals at Versailles High School in Darke County. “I enjoy the work and the people,” Tawni says. “Pleasing people with good food is easy. Getting groceries and making sure everything gets delivered is the hard part.”

Batdorf’s Red Barn Catering, 937-418-3393; www.batdorfsredbarncatering.com.

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  13


ATTENTION: Recipe Lovers The beloved Ohio Cooperative Living recipes are available in an easy-to-follow video format! Subscribe to Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives’ YouTube channel for the latest recipe and feature videos. Visit Instagram for a chance to win a $10 gift card. For complete rules, visit @ohiocoopliving on Instagram.* *NO PURCHASE NECESSARY

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14   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021


The gift of

GOOD EATS READER RECIPE CONTEST

When you need a gift for the person who has everything.

food

RECIPES AND PHOTOS BY CATHERINE MURRAY

WARM-UP-WINTER HOT CHOCOLATE MIX Prep: 10 minutes | Servings: 20 3 cups powdered milk 1 cup powdered sugar 2/3 cup packed brown sugar 2 cups cocoa powder

1 teaspoon cinnamon ¼ teaspoon cayenne ¼ teaspoon salt

Note: The age of your cinnamon and cayenne could affect their flavor. Add more or less to taste. Combine all ingredients into a blender or food processor and blend in 15-second intervals until well combined. Let powder settle for a minute before opening. Transfer to gifting jars or tins. When gifting, include these instructions: “Whisk together 1/3 cup of the hot chocolate mix and 8 ounces (1 cup) of water (or milk, if preferred). Top with marshmallows and warm up your winter!” Paired gifts could include marshmallows, a mug, or a small whisk. Makes 62/3 cups, which fills about four 16-ounce Mason jars. Per serving: 133 calories, 1 gram fat (0.5 grams saturated fat), 3 milligrams cholesterol, 138 milligrams sodium, 26 grams total carbohydrates, 2.5 grams fiber, 9 grams protein.

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  15


SWEET AND SALTY CARAMELS Prep: 10 minutes | Cook: 30 minutes | Cool: overnight | Servings: 27 ½ cup unsalted butter ¼ cup water 1 cup heavy cream ½ teaspoon flaked salt 1½ cups sugar ½ teaspoon vanilla extract ¼ cup light corn syrup Note: If you don’t have a 9 x 6-inch baking pan, makeshift a cardboard box to form the sides of a pan. Line a 9 x 6-inch baking pan with a 1-inch lip (or higher) of parchment so the excess paper comes up the sides. Spray top of parchment with cooking spray. Place pan wherever you plan to store it overnight for the caramels to cool. (If pan is moved while the caramels are hardening, it will cause the surface of the caramels to wrinkle.) Place butter and cream in a microwaveable bowl with spout. Microwave 1 to 3 minutes until butter is melted. Set aside. In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, corn syrup, and water. Stir until sugar is just moistened and uniform, being careful not to splash any up the sides of the saucepan. Heat on medium until the mixture begins to boil. Stir once, then cover with lid for 1 minute. Continue to boil uncovered without stirring at all for 5 to 10 minutes, until mixture reaches 320 F on a candy thermometer and is a light amber color around the edges of the pan. Turn off the heat. Slowly and carefully begin to add the cream/butter mixture to the sugar mixture a little at a time, whisking to incorporate. (It will boil intensely at this stage.) Turn burner back on to medium-high. Continue boiling without stirring until it reaches 240 F, 5 to 10 minutes. (240 F produces soft caramels. If you prefer slightly harder caramels, aim for 245 F.) Remove from heat and quickly whisk in vanilla. Pour into prepared 9 x 6-inch pan. Do not scrape the bottom of the saucepan if there’s a burnt layer. Let cool for 2 to 5 minutes, then sprinkle salt on top. (Test with a few flakes of salt every minute or so. If the salt begins to sink, wait another minute and try again.) Let rest overnight. Cut into 27 1 x 2-inch pieces and wrap in 5 x 5-inch pieces of parchment or wax paper. Store in airtight containers for up to a week. Per serving: 95 calories, 5 grams fat (3 grams saturated fat), 15 milligrams cholesterol, 69 milligrams sodium, 13 grams total carbohydrates, 0 grams fiber, 0 grams protein.

FESTIVE HUMMUS Prep: 10 minutes | Servings: 6 1 large lemon 2 15.5-ounce cans chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained 2 tablespoons olive oil

2 cloves garlic small bunch fresh curly parsley ¼ to ½ cup water

Wash and scrub exterior of lemon. With a small knife or peeler, separate the lemon rind from the lemon, avoiding most of the white pith. Place chickpeas into a food processor. Squeeze the juice from the lemon over the chickpeas, then add the lemon rind, olive oil, garlic, and most of the parsley (thick stems removed). Process for 2 to 3 minutes, adding a bit of water at a time until the mixture is smooth and easy to spread, scraping sides of food processor a few times. Spoon hummus into a serving bowl or Mason jar, and finely chop a small handful of parsley and sprinkle on top. Serve with red and green vegetables. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. Per serving: 582 calories, 14 grams fat (2 grams saturated fat), 0 milligrams cholesterol, 43 milligrams sodium, 90 grams total carbohydrates, 26 grams fiber, 29 grams protein

16   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021


GIFTABLE NUT BUTTERS Prep: 10 minutes each | Servings: 8 (per recipe) CARDAMOM DATE CASHEW BUTTER 1 cup roasted unsalted cashews 1/8 teaspoon cardamom 1 tablespoon olive oil ¼ teaspoon salt 6 dates, finely chopped BROWN SUGAR ROASTED ALMOND BUTTER 1 cup roasted unsalted almonds 3 tablespoons brown sugar 1 tablespoon olive oil ¼ teaspoon salt MEXICAN PEANUT BUTTER 1 cup unsalted peanuts 1 tablespoon olive oil 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1 teaspoon cocoa powder

2 teaspoons brown sugar ½ teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon nutmeg 1/8 teaspoon cayenne

In a small food processor, chop/grind nuts until they begin to form a paste and stick together, approximately 2 to 4 minutes. The food processor may begin to overheat, so make sure to take breaks to give it time to cool down. Use a spatula to scrape nuts off the sides and encourage the blade to continue running. Once a paste forms, add the oil and process until incorporated. Add remaining ingredients and process for another 1 to 2 minutes, until all ingredients are incorporated and butter is smooth to your liking. Store in a sealed container for up to a month. Each recipe makes approximately 1 cup of nut butter.

Have you tried one of our recipes? Do you have a recipe to share with other Ohio co-op members? Visit the Member Interactive page on www.ohiocoopliving.com to find recipes submitted by our readers and to upload yours.

www.ohiocoopliving.com While you’re there, check out a video of a few of our recipes being prepared.

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  17


Sacred Stone of the Southwest is on the Brink of Extinction

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enturies ago, Persians, Tibetans and Mayans considered turquoise a gemstone of the heavens, believing the striking blue stones were sacred pieces of sky. Today, the rarest and most valuable turquoise is found in the American Southwest–– but the future of the blue beauty is unclear. On a recent trip to Tucson, we spoke with fourth generation turquoise traders who explained that less than five percent of turquoise mined worldwide can be set into jewelry and only about twenty mines in the Southwest supply gem-quality turquoise. Once a thriving industry, many Southwest mines have run dry and are now closed. We found a limited supply of C. turquoise from Arizona and snatched it up for our Sedona Turquoise Collection. Inspired by the work of those ancient craftsmen and designed to showcase the exceptional blue stone, each stabilized vibrant cabochon features a unique, oneof-a-kind matrix surrounded in Bali metalwork. You could drop over $1,200 on a turquoise pendant, or you could secure 26 carats of genuine Arizona turquoise for just $99. Your satisfaction is 100% guaranteed. If you aren’t completely happy with your purchase, send it back within 30 days for a complete refund of the item price. The supply of Arizona turquoise is limited, don’t miss your chance to own the Southwest’s brilliant blue treasure. Call today! Jewelry Specifications: • Arizona turquoise • Silver-finished settings

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MID-OHIO ENERGY COOPERATIVE LOCAL PAGES

RATE ADJUSTMENT REMINDER

SERVICE CHARGE ADJUSTMENT OFFSETS RISING COSTS OF

RELIABLE SERVICE

$2 service charge increase effective Jan. 1, 2022, for all residential service accounts

A

s the cost of goods (meters, poles, wire, etc.) required to bring you reliable energy increases, Mid-Ohio Energy must examine rates accordingly. Before implementing any rate increase, your co-op’s staff and board review cost-of-service studies and consider the effects on the membership. Our goal is to hold costs as low as possible while ensuring you have access to safe, affordable, and reliable power. In September, the co-op’s board approved a flat monthly service charge increase of $2 per month for all residential members. This adjustment brings the monthly residential service charge from $39 to $41. This change is reflected in the “distribution” line of your monthly billing statement. There is no change to the rate you pay per kilowatt-hour.

With the rate adjustment going into effect on Jan. 1, members will see the new rate on the bill generated in early February (for energy used between Jan. 1 and Jan. 31). For a full list of all rate class adjustments, please visit MidOhioEnergy.com. We’re here to help members prepare for even small increases in your energy budget. We offer budgeting options like levelized budget billing and PrePay metering, home energy consults, and rebates for energy-efficient appliances. Please give us a call for any questions regarding your rates or ways to contain energy costs.

Rising equipment costs The cost of goods needed to deliver electricity to your home has risen over the past five years. Below is a look at how costs have increased for some common electric distribution equipment.

Service charge explained The service charge is a set monthly fee charged to all members to help recover costs of the equipment needed to deliver power to your meter. The service charge (included in the “distribution” line on your bill) covers the cooperative’s fixed costs such as line equipment, property taxes, and other items needed to provide electricity on demand. This also includes items like line maintenance, tree trimming, and administrative costs. The co-op incurs these costs regardless of an individual’s energy use. These investments are necessary to provide the high-quality electric service our members expect and deserve. Rather than asking members to pay the full upfront cost of what it takes to deliver power to the home, the service charge helps manage these costs over time.

THEN (2016)

- VS. -

NOW (2021)

METER

$ 129

$ 144.82

POLE

$ 148.59

$ 141.75

WIRE

$0.64/foot

$0.85/foot

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING   19


MID-OHIO ENERGY COOPERATIVE LOCAL PAGES 2022 YOUTH TOUR

High school sophomores, juniors, and seniors! Interested in a life-changing leadership experience in Washington, D.C.?

June 18–24, 2022

What is Youth Tour? The Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives Youth Tour is an annual leadership program sponsored by Mid-Ohio Energy. It’s a weeklong, allexpenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C., that gives exceptional high school students the opportunity to meet with their congressional leaders at the U.S. Capitol, make new friends from across the state and country, and see many of the famous Washington, D.C., sights.

For more information and to apply, visit MidOhioEnergy.com/YouthTour or call Brian Barger at 888-363-6446

Successful applicants:  • Must be a high school sophomore, junior, or senior. • M ust be a son, daughter, or legal ward of a Mid-Ohio Energy member living on the cooperative’s lines and receiving electric service from the cooperative at the time of selection. • Must submit an application along with grade transcripts indicating cumulative credit hours and grade-point average. • M ust submit a letter of recommendation from a guidance counselor, principal, teacher, or community or organization advisor. Applicants will be required to take a test consisting of true/false and short essay questions about electric cooperatives. Applicants will receive the info necessary to study for the test when an application is received. Application deadline is Feb. 25.

Please note:

Youth Tour 2022 is subject to change due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives and the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association are continually monitoring state and federal guidance and will adjust plans accordingly if needed. This year’s program is being coordinated with the healthy and safety of delegates, chaperones, and their families foremost in mind.

20 OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING • MARCH 2017 20   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING • DECEMBER 2021


SCHOLARSHIPS

2022 GRADS Are your parents members of

Mid-Ohio Energy? If so, you could win a share of in scholarships!

$11,000

Scholarship rules and applications are online: MidOhioEnergy.com/scholarships. For questions or assistance, contact Brian Barger at 888-363-6446.

Deadline to apply: Feb. 11, 2022

CHILDREN OF MEMBERS SCHOLARSHIP

TOUCHSTONE ENERGY ACHIEVEMENT SCHOLARSHIP

High school seniors can win a share of $10,000 in local scholarships toward college or technical school. Local awards will be given to seven students who are children of Mid-Ohio Energy members. The overall first-place winner will move on to compete in a statewide competition to win additional scholarship money.

This scholarship was created to reward those students who have committed themselves to the pursuance of a college education despite unique and substantial personal challenges that may have befallen them. This special scholarship rewards students expressing the same values in their lives as the Touchstone Energy brand: accountability, integrity, innovation, and commitment to community.

1st place: $2,000 2nd place: $1,800 3rd place: $1,600

4th place: $1,400 5th place: $1,200 Hon. mention (2): $1,000

The winner receives $1,000.

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING   21


MID-OHIO ENERGY COOPERATIVE LOCAL PAGES CO-OP NOTICES

Theft of power: Costly and dangerous In Ohio, theft of electricity is a first-degree misdemeanor if the value of the stolen electricity, plus any equipment repair, is less than $300. It’s a fourth-degree felony if more than $300 or the offender was previously convicted of the charge. Tampering with an electric meter carries similar penalties. The offender doesn’t have to be caught in the act. The law states that reconnecting a meter disconnected by a utility or tampering with a meter is prima facie evidence that the user intended to defraud the utility. Conviction can mean from six months in jail and a $1,000 fine to five years in jail and a $2,500 fine. As part of a not-for-profit cooperative, someone who steals electric power is stealing directly from your pocket. But revenue loss isn’t the only risk. Theft of electric power requires the thief to take significant risks and endangers not only him or herself, but also our employees and anyone who happens to be nearby the tampered equipment or lines left exposed and unsafe. If you know or suspect someone of stealing, let us know (anonymously, if you prefer) by contacting our offices.

Mid-Ohio Energy’s offices will be closed Dec. 23, Dec. 24, and Dec. 31. Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

Statement of Nondiscrimination In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity (including gender expression), sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, family/parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, political beliefs, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity, in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA (not all bases apply to all programs). Remedies and complaint filing deadlines vary by program or incident. Person with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.) should contact the responsible Agency or USDA’s TARGET Center at (202)7202600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800)877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English. To file a program discrimination complaint, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, AD-3027, found online at: http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_ filing_cust.html and at any USDA office or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by: (1) mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; (2) fax: (202) 690-7442; or (3) email: program.intake@usda.gov USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer, and lender.

MID-OHIO ENERGY COOPERATIVE, INC.

BOARD OF TRUSTEES

CONTACT

Dan Harris

888-363-6446 www.MidOhioEnergy.com

John Thiel

1210 W. Lima St. Kenton, Ohio 43326 DISTRICT OFFICE

2859 Marion-Upper Sandusky Rd. Marion, Ohio 43302 OFFICE HOURS

Mon.–Fri., 7:30 a.m.– 4 p.m.

Trevor Fremont Secretary

Tony Hastings Assistant Secretary

Brice Turner Treasurer

Paul Beineke Robert Imbody Howard Lyle Gene McCluer Trustees

22   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING • DECEMBER 2021

President/CEO

Chairman

Vice Chairman

HEADQUARTERS OFFICE

John Metcalf

HAVE A STORY SUGGESTION?

Email your ideas to: member@midohioenergy.com


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A sharp business model Simplicity and quality have been the iconic knifemaker’s rule for more than a century. STORY AND PHOTOS BY JAMES PROFFITT

E

rnest “Mooney” Warther began carving with his first pocketknife at age 5. A dozen years later, in 1902, he crafted his mother a kitchen knife as a gift. Her friends and neighbors liked it, so he made more. These days, 120 years later, Dover-based Warther Cutlery is still making knives the way Mooney did — one at a time and by hand. And mothers (and everyone else) still love them. American steel, American hardware, American wood, Ohio labor, and blades with an amazingly attractive (trademarked since 1907) finish pattern create loyal customers who return regularly to add to their collections. If you visit the company’s new 15,000-square-foot showroom, factory, and office, you’ll find plenty of American-made kitchen products, including cookware and a small army of specialty foods, spices, and condiments. But you’ll quickly see that knives made by fourthgeneration craftsmen are the star of the show. The beautiful birch-handled knives come in many shapes and sizes. The most striking feature of the knives is the finish pattern on the blades. Each one is painstakingly tooled by hand — a 7-inch chef’s knife boasts more than 150 individual circular tooling patterns. Jeanie Nadeau was a tour guide up until just a few years ago, and even though she’s retired, she’s still enthusiastically promoting Warther. She says during her

24   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021

years at Warther, plenty of folks “snuck in” for a peek. “We would have makers come in here, knifemakers, and you could pick them out,” she says. “By the time the tour was done, I could tell it was somebody that wanted to know something, so I would approach them and they’d say, ‘Well, we’re from such-and-such cutlery and we just hear so much about this place and we just had to see it to believe it.’” Over the years, Warther knives have been presented to presidents and dignitaries, including presidents Reagan, Ford, and Bush (both); Ohio governors; and Frank Lloyd Wright, among others. Fine cutlery isn’t the only family business. David Warther II handcrafts museum-quality pocketknives in the style of his grandfather Mooney and is a world-renowned ivory carver, having created 60-plus ships documenting the world’s maritime history. Some of the ships’ ropes measure just seven one-thousandths of an inch in diameter. You can see the collection at David Warther Carvings museum in nearby Sugarcreek. They also manufacture a complete line of cutting boards, butcher blocks, and knife storage systems from hardwoods like cherry, walnut, and maple — and in the tradition of Mooney Warther, wood-carving knives. Next door to Warther Cutlery is the Warther Museum, featuring the nearly complete collection of Mooney’s amazingly intricate, to-scale ebony, walnut, and ivory steam engines. Over the years, many tried to buy his


Nothing makes cooking easier and more pleasurable than finely crafted cutlery.

works, including Henry Ford, who offered to purchase his entire collection. Mooney gave a few away over the years, but he never sold a single one. Warther knives are guaranteed for life and include free sharpening while you wait, which generates a high volume of traffic through its doors. “I think they do about 700 knives a week,” says super-helpful Jen, who goes back and forth between answering the phone and waiting on customers. “We get knives mailed in, too.” Folks who bring knives in for sharpening can walk right into a workshop where handles are being riveted onto tangs, and they can watch knifemakers make the dull go away on a long sanding belt in mere seconds.

Customers at the Warther store can see much of the knifemaking process (above), including when a hardwood handle is hand-riveted onto a high-grade steel blade (below).

Ken and Sandy Langell traveled from Florida for an Airstream gathering nearby — and they couldn’t go home without stopping by and picking something up. “I have Warther carving knives,” Ken says. “I work mostly on cooking utensils, and I tend to do detailed carvings on the handles. Cooking spoons and serving spoons and spatulas — I decorate the handles. These knives are great for the details. Very good quality, and they really hold an edge. I can’t fault them.”

Warther Cutlery, 924 N. Tuscarawas Ave., Dover, OH 44622. Retail store open 9 a.m.–5 p.m Mon.– Sat. 330-343-7513; https://warthercutlery.com. DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  25


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Night and day Franklin Park Conservatory in Columbus has two distinct holiday personalities. BY VICTORIA ELLWOOD; PHOTOS BY REBECCA SEUM

B

y day inside Franklin Park Conservatory in Columbus, thousands of red, pink, and white poinsettias, a giant poinsettia tree, and gorgeous winter greenery create a festive holiday scene.

Then, as dusk falls, more than 450,000 twinkly lights, musical light shows, a holiday train display, and brightly lit “animals” like elephants and flamingos make a magical winter wonderland outside on the conservatory grounds. The day-night double feature has grown into a much-adored extravaganza, and Karin Noecker loves every minute of it. “I’ve worked here at the conservatory for 18 years, and this is my most favorite time of year,” says Noecker, director of horticulture and exhibitions. “Everything is just so beautiful.”

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  27


Holiday Blooms Starting months before the holidays, the conservatory’s greenhouses are filled with thousands of little poinsettias in all shades of pink, red, and white. They’re nurtured and grown by the staff horticulturists to prepare for their big event — Holiday Blooms. The daytime holiday horticulture extravaganza inside the conservatory’s halls is a panorama of stunning plant collections, fanciful vignettes, festive blooms, and greenery — and of course, the famous 10-foot poinsettia tree. “The poinsettia tree is always the centerpiece of the show,” says Noecker. “It’s a yearly tradition for many families to come and take their holiday photos in front of it. People just love it.” Visitors also can enjoy the sweet tradition of the annual gingerbread house display and competition, which attracts upward of 50 entries. This year’s theme is “There’s No Place Like Home for the Holidays”; anyone can enter, and visitors vote on their favorites.

Conservatory Aglow The nighttime exhibit has grown over the last several years and now features 13 acres of outdoor lighting. “That’s a pretty good footprint,” Noecker says. “Yet, it still feels intimate and is very doable for families.” Visitors are welcomed with a 30foot tunnel of lights that leads to an enchanting landscape filled with magical, brightly lit vignettes and musical light shows. The conservatory’s lighting partner, Ahlum and Arbor Tree Preservation, creates the fanciful scenes and choreographs the light shows.

A tunnel of lights greets visitors as they head outside to check out the 13 acres of glittering, twinkling outdoor displays on the grounds.

28   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021


“As a special treat, this year, our topiary animals are reimagined with lights,” Noecker says. “So, you may see flamingos, elephants, and even fish in the creek all lit up.” The iconic Paul Busse Garden Railway is dressed up for the season, too, with glowing lights illuminating the tracks and engine. Roaming performers, musicians, ice carvers, and food trucks add to the festivities, and the Botanica Gift Shop and Greenhouse is open for gift shopping.

Holiday Blooms (9 a.m.–4 p.m.) and Conservatory Aglow (5–9 p.m.) are open every day from Nov. 20 to Jan. 9, except for Thanksgiving and Christmas days. For details and ticket information, visit www.fpconservatory.org.

Anyone can enter the conservatory’s gingerbread house competition; this year’s theme is “There’s No Place Like Home for the Holidays.”

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  29


Lights are the ultimate symbol of the Christmas season, and Ohio is aglow and agleam with a multitude of evening lights shows. We’ve selected a dozen that are sure to make your Yuletide merry, bright — and memorable. STORY AND PHOTOS BY DAMAINE VONADA

Kingwood Center Gardens, Mansfield

Butch Bando’s Fantasy of Lights

Christmas at Kingwood

Christmas Nights of Lights

Operated by the Bando family, this magic drive features 3 miles of LED lights, 160 displays, and a stunning 250-foot RGB (red, green, and blue) wall. Mrs. Claus will be on hand to collect — and deliver! — letters to Santa through Dec. 23. 614-412-3499; www. butchbandosfantasyoflights.com

A picture-perfect landscape and 1920s French Provincial mansion provide a beautiful backdrop for the longest-standing tradition at the former estate of industrialist Charles Kelley King. Follow the trail of lights through nearly 200 multicolored trees, stop at the walk-in tree for a one-of-a-kind photo op, and marvel at the home-for-the-holidays-themed decorations in Kingwood Hall. 419-522-0211; www.kingwoodcenter.org

Thanks to Christmas Nights of Lights, Coney Island water park makes a big splash in winter as well as summer. The drive-through show includes 2.5 miles of twinkling tunnels and radiant displays that range from shiny snowflakes to dancing candy canes. 513-232-8230; https://coneyislandpark.com/ event/christmas-light-show

Alum Creek State Park Campgrounds, Delaware

Kingwood Center Gardens, Mansfield

30   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021

Coney Island, Cincinnati


Stan Hywet Hall and Garden, Akron

Courthouse Light Show and Dickens Victorian Village Cambridge

One of Ohio’s most imaginative holiday celebrations takes place in downtown Cambridge, where community volunteers re-create scenes — complete with life-sized mannequins wearing period attire — from A Christmas Carol. Christmas with Scrooge and Tiny Tim alone would be worth driving to Cambridge, but every night, there’s a bonus at the town’s handsome courthouse: an eyepopping, foot-tapping spectacular featuring thousands of flashing and flickering lights synchronized to the sounds of holiday music. 740-421-4956; www.dickensvictorianvillage. com/index.php

Deck the Hall

Gallipolis in Lights

When Goodyear Tire and Rubber co-founder F.A. Seiberling and his wife, Gertrude, built their home in the early 1900s, they did it on a grandiose scale. Fittingly enough, Deck the Hall is a grand event with more than a million lights illuminating the estate, a choreographed lights-and-music show in the great garden, and a festive gingerbread land in the playgarden. Tour the sprawling Manor House to feast your eyes on fabulously decorated Christmas trees and fanciful interpretations of beloved Christmas movies. 330-836-5533; www.stanhywet.org

Gallipolis may be the only place in Ohio where you’ll see fleurs-de-lis instead of stars atop Christmas trees. Why? The town was founded by French immigrants, and Gallipolis in Lights is staged in a park that was the site of their settlement. At Christmastime, the park seems like something from a Hallmark movie, with glittering garlands adorning its classic bandstand, holiday music echoing through the wintry air, and ornate balls covered with colorful lights hanging from the trees. 800-765-6482 or 740-446-6882; https:// visitgallia.com/gallipolis-in-lights

Gallipolis City Park, Gallipolis

Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens, Akron

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  31


Toledo Zoo

Journey Borealis

Legendary Lights of Clifton Mill

Lights Before Christmas

Boasting more than a million LED lights, Journey Borealis is a multifaceted excursion that culminates in a look at Santa’s Workshop with working elves. Along the way, you’ll encounter Jerusalem (where blue and white lights pay tribute to Hannukah), Germany’s Candy Cane Forest (festive trees wrapped with red and white yarn), The Grinch’s Greenland (featuring an 80foot light tunnel), and Bethlehem (to honor the birth of Jesus). 513-868-1234; www.journeyborealis.com

Combine the natural beauty of the Little Miami River with 4.4 million red and white lights draping a historical grist mill, a covered bridge, and the riverbanks, and what do you get? One dazzling and exclusively Ohio extravaganza. Adding to the enchantment are hourly lights-andmusic shows and a singular Santa’s workshop where the jolly old elf not only makes toys but also goes up the chimney to load his sleigh. 937-767-550; www.cliftonmill.com

Perhaps Ohio’s most amazing Christmas tree is the zoo’s Norway spruce, a nationally known, 85-foot-tall behemoth that takes more than 3 miles of lights to decorate. The lighting of the “Big Tree” commences a truly electrifying event that includes dancing lights in the Main Plaza and 200 gleaming animal images. Take a cool ride on the ice slide or Holly Jolly Express Train, then warm up in the Yuletide Food and Spirits tent. 419-385-5721; www.toledozoo.org/lights

Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park, Hamilton

Clifton

32   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021

Toledo Zoo and Aquarium, Toledo


Renaissance Park, Waynesville

Upper’s Winter Fantasy of Lights

WonderLight’s Christmas in Ohio

From Santa’s stable to Snoopy and the Peanuts gang, more than 85 unique and animated displays transform a municipal park into a lightfilled wonderland where community volunteers sweeten the experience by handing out candy canes. Walk or drive through the 33-acre park, and on select nights, you can schedule a horsedrawn carriage ride. 419-294-3556; www.uppersfantasyoflights.org

Turn off your headlights and turn on your radio to enjoy over a million LED lights synchronized to traditional and contemporary Christmas songs. With its floating snowflakes, shooting stars, and candy forest, the 2-mile driving tour is so popular that tickets must be purchased in advance. info@wlp-inc.com; www.wonderlightschristmas.com

Harrison Smith Park, Upper Sandusky

Hartford Fairgrounds, Hartford

Yuletide Village, Seasons of Lights

Renaissance Park, Waynesville Get your photo taken with the medievalstyle park’s Woodland Santa, or Krampus, a fearsome figure from European folklore who punishes naughty children. Stroll past the shimmering lights of Fairy Land and Gum Drop Alley, treat yourself to hot cider and gingerbread, and shop for artisan gifts and stocking stuffers in the marketplace. 513-897-7000; www.yuletidevillage.com

Credits First page MAIN PHOTO COURTESY KINGWOO D CENTER GARDENS AMY WEIMER PHOTOGRAPHY; COURTESY KINGWOOD CENTER GARDENS; COURTESY OF VISIT CINCY

Third page MAIN PHOTO COURTESY TOLEDO ZOO COURTESY OF PYRAMID HILL; COURTESY CLIFTON MILL; COURTESY TOLEDO ZOO

Second page

Fourth page

MAIN PHOTO COURTESY OF STAN HYWET HALL & GARDENS COURTESY OF CAMBRIDGE/GUERNSEY COUNTY VISITORS & CONVENTION BUREAU; COURTESY OF STAN HYWET HALL & GARDENS; KAITLYNN HALLEY

MAIN PHOTO BY CHECKMATE PHOTOGRAPHY/COURTESY YULETIDE VILLAGE BY STAN KEAR; COURTESY OF WONDERLIGHTS PRODUCTIONS; CHECKMATE PHOTOGRAPHY/COURTESY YULETIDE VILLAGE

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  33


O Christmas Tree

Imgard’s spruce may not have been the first, but it’s sparked a long-running Wooster tradition. STORY AND PHOTOS BY DAMAINE VONADA

W

ooster Cemetery manager Kelvin Questel has an up-close view of the parade of visitors to one particular graveside each holiday season. His office, you see, is quite near the final resting place of one August Imgard (1826–1904), and the tree on that spot is quite the Yuletide draw. “People come at all times of the day and evening to see the tree,” says Questel. “Many of them are interested in history, or they decorated the tree when they were kids and now bring their kids to see it.” Although Questel is unsure when the tradition of trimming Imgard’s tomb-side tree began, he does know why the ritual is unique to Wooster: In 1847, Imgard was a 19-year-old immigrant from Germany living at his brother’s house in Wooster and grew homesick for his native country’s customs, especially around Christmastime. So, he went to the woods near Apple Creek, cut down a spruce tree, and positioned it in a window, adorned with nuts, apples, sweets, and candles. He even had a tinsmith make a star for the top of the tree. The novelty of turning an evergreen into an indoor decoration caused something of a sensation. People from all over town came to gaze at Imgard’s tree in wonder and

34   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021


amazement, and within a few years, Christmas trees were common in Wooster. Imgard, a tailor by trade, became a prosperous and respected citizen. He built a large, handsome house where, every Christmas, he delighted in decorating an elaborate tree for his children and grandchildren. Imgard died in 1904, and his home is now the rectory at St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception Church.

Mistaken identity For decades, newspapers published stories about Imgard that proclaimed Wooster the home of the nation’s first Christmas tree. The town enjoyed that claim to fame until the 1940s, when William Schreiber, who taught German at the College of Wooster, discovered that Christmas trees existed in other American towns as early as 1832 — Cincinnati probably even had an 1830s tree. Schreiber’s research, however, verified Imgard’s importance locally. “The professor determined it was the first Christmas tree in both Wooster and Wayne County,” says Questel. The National Confectioners Association also credits Imgard with commencing the custom of hanging candy canes on Christmas trees. A choir master in Germany supposedly originated candy canes by giving children sugar sticks shaped like shepherd’s hooks. Since candy canes didn’t have peppermint flavoring or red stripes until about 1900, the ones Imgard used as decorations would have been solid white.

be seen from downtown. The public square boasts a children’s Christmas tree, and in the spirit of the season, Father Stephen Moran, who currently resides in St. Mary’s rectory, displays an old-fashioned tree — complete with candy canes and candles that would make Imgard proud — in the dining room’s bay window. Questel usually lights the Fraser fir at Imgard’s tomb on the Sunday after Thanksgiving, but since the 20-foot tree is getting too big to easily decorate, he is already planning its replacement. “Remembering Imgard with a Christmas tree is a neat tradition,” he says. “We want to keep it going.”

Want to know more about Wooster’s Christmas trees and celebrations? Information about August Imgard, Christmas trees, and holiday events is available from Wooster Cemetery (330-264-9090; www. facebook.com/WoosterCemetery); the Wayne County Convention and Visitors Bureau (800-362-6474; www.wccvb.com); Main Street Wooster (www.mainstreetwooster.org); and Wooster Area Chamber of Commerce (www. woosterchamber.com).

Years ago, Questel swapped a Norway spruce that had stood beside Imgard’s tomb for the current Fraser fir. “Fraser firs don’t have prickly needles, and that makes them nicer to decorate,” he says. Because of the parish’s connection to Imgard’s home, St. Mary School students often make ornaments for the tree, and community volunteers help light and decorate it as well. In 2020, Wayne County visitors bureau director Martha Starkey, her husband, Paul Starkey, and her co-worker Jacki Chamberlain created artificial candy canes for the Fraser fir. To ensure the candy canes were durable, they fashioned them from corrugated plastic, and in a nod to Imgard, made them white.

Memory eternal The gravesites of many prominent townspeople are in the cemetery — including Schreiber, baseball player Dean Chance, and founding fathers whose surnames (Beall, Bever, Larwill) now grace Wooster’s streets. But only Imgard is legendary enough to merit a sign that says, “Brought to Wooster, The First Christmas Tree, in 1847” — a reminder written in bright red of why the town continues to keep his name alive. Imgard’s legacy lives on in several conspicuously merry and bright trees. In addition to Imgard’s twinkly Fraser fir, Wooster Cemetery is the site of a Chamber of Commercesponsored community Christmas tree that is so tall it can

Martha Starkey hangs a decorative candy cane on the Christmas tree at the tomb of August Imgard; opposite page: the Christmas tree in the window of the rectory at St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception Church.

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  35


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36   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021


2021 CALENDAR

DECEMBER/JANUARY

NORTHWEST

THROUGH DEC. 26 – Lake of Lights, Saulisberry Park/ France Lake, 13344 St. Rte. 67 W., Kenton, 6–9 p.m. A daily drive-through lighting event, with special events held on the weekends. For more information call 419675-2547 or email lakeoflights08@gmail.com. THROUGH DEC. 31 – Lights Before Christmas, Toledo Zoo, 2 Hippo Way, Toledo. Over 1 million lights, the award-winning Big Tree, and more than 200 illuminated animal images. 419-385-5721 or www.toledozoo.org. THROUGH JAN. 2 – North Pole Express, Northwest Ohio Railroad Preservation Inc., 12505 Co. Rd. 99, Findlay, Fri./Sat. 5:30–9 p.m., Sun. 5:30–8:30 p.m. Adults $4, C. (12 and under) $3. Hop on board our quarter-scale locomotive for a magical trip through a winter wonderland of sparkling lights and festive decorations. See operating model trains and hundreds of decorated trees, and visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus (on select nights). 419-423-2995, www.facebook.com/ nworrp, or www.nworrp.org.

WEST VIRGINIA

COMPILED BY COLLEEN ROMICK CLARK

THROUGH APR. 1 – Star Gazing at Schoonover Observatory, 670 N. Jefferson, Lima, 9 p.m. on first Friday of every month. Free. See the stars using the 14-inch computerized domed telescope, weather permitting. https://limaastro.com. DEC. 9–19 – Harvey, Fort Findlay Playhouse, 300 W. Sandusky St., Findlay, Thur.–Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 5 p.m. $15. The community theater presents Mary Chase’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play, the story of Elwood P. Dowd, a polite and friendly man with a very strange best friend — a 6-foot-3½-inch invisible rabbit named Harvey! Purchase tickets online at www.fortfindlayplayhouse.org or call 567-525-3636 for more information. DEC. 9–22 – Winter Wonderland Light Display, Sandusky Co. Fgds., 901 Rawson Ave., Fremont, Sun.– Thur. 6–8 p.m., Fri./ Sat. 6–9 p.m. Drive-through only. $5 per car donation requested. Craft show, games, horse rides, train rides, music, popcorn, cookies, hot chocolate, and Santa! Donations of food items accepted for food pantry. 419-332-5604 or www. sanduskycountyfair.com/scfwinterwonderland. DEC. 10–18 – Elf the Musical, Encore Theatre, 991 N. Shore Dr., Lima, Thur.–Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 2 p.m. $10–$17. Based on the film by David Berenbaum. 419-223-8866 or www.amiltellers.org. DEC. 17, 19 – Silver Screen Classics: It’s a Wonderful Life, Valentine Theatre, 400 N. Superior St., Toledo, Fri. 7:30 p.m., Sun. 2 p.m. $5. See Frank Capra’s classic Christmas tale come to life on the big screen. 419-2422787 or www.valentinetheatre.com. DEC. 18 – Toledo Jazz Orchestra Holiday Concert, Valentine Theatre, 400 N. Superior St., Toledo, 7 p.m. 419-242-2787 or www.valentinetheatre.com.

DEC. 18–23 – Hayes Home Holidays: “Spirits of Christmas,” 1337 Hayes Ave., Fremont, 5:30–9 p.m. $8–$18, under 6 free. Experience the magic and supernatural side of Christmas with beloved Christmas stories, including A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens during an evening tour of parts of the historic Hayes Home. A cup of wassail will also put you in the Christmas spirit. Advance tickets recommended. 419-332-2081 or www.rbhayes.org. DEC. 26–28, 30–31 – Horse-Drawn Sleigh Rides at Spiegel Grove, 1337 Hayes Ave., Fremont, 1–4 p.m. Ride through the wooded estate in a horse-drawn sleigh, as President Hayes did, or on a horse-drawn trolley. Sleigh ride $5.50 per rider; trolley $4.50 per rider; under 3 free. 419-332-2081 or www.rbhayes.org. DEC. 31 – “Madness at Midnight” Walleye Drop, N. Madison St., Port Clinton, 9 p.m.–midnight. Enter raffle to win one of three great prizes. 419-635-7470 or https:// wyliewalleyefoundation.com. JAN. 1–2 – Tri-State Gun Show, Allen Co. Fgds., 2750 Harding Hwy., Lima (2 miles east of Lima on St. Rte. 309), Sat. 8:30 a.m.–4 p.m., Sun. 8:30 a.m.–3 p.m. $6, free for members, under 18 free. Over 400 tables of modern and antique guns, edged weapons, and sportsmen equipment. 419-647-0067 or www. tristategunshow.org. JAN. 8 – Model Train Clinic, Hayes Presidential Library and Museums, Spiegel Grove, 1337 Hayes Ave., Fremont, 1–4 p.m. $5, under 6 free. Veteran model train hobbyists assist you with advice related to model train maintenance and repair, as well as estimating the value of older model trains. 419-332-2081 or www.rbhayes.org.

THROUGH DEC. 28 – Celebration of Lights, Morris Park, Fairmont, 6–10 p.m. See over 500 holiday light displays in this 1.3-mile drive-through tour. Wednesday nights are walker nights. Suggested donation of $10 per car, $25 per bus, $5 per walker, under 12 free. 304-366-4550 or www.celebrationoflightswv.com. THROUGH JAN. 9 – Winter Festival of Lights, Oglebay Resort, 464 Lodge Dr., Wheeling, nightly at dusk. Featuring 300 acres of twinkling lights over a 6-mile drive. Per-car donation requested; valid for the entire festival season. 877-436-1797, https:// wheelingcvb.com/events/winter-festival-of-lights-2, or https://oglebay.com.

Make sure you’re included in our calendar! Submit listings AT LEAST 90 DAYS prior to the event to Ohio Cooperative Living, 6677 Busch Blvd., Columbus, OH 43229 or send an email to events@ohioec.org. Ohio Cooperative Living will not publish listings that don’t include a complete address or a number/website for more information.

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  37


2021 CALENDAR

DECEMBER/JANUARY

NORTHEAST

THROUGH DEC. 31 – Holidays at the Mansion, Victorian House Museum, 484 Wooster Rd., Millersburg, Sun.–Thur. 1–4 p.m., Fri./Sat. 1–8 p.m. $10. Tour the 28-room mansion, beautifully decorated for the season. Back by popular demand is our outdoor winter wonderland lighting display with over 14,000 lights. 330674-0022 or www.holmeshistory.com/events. THROUGH JAN. 8 – Steubenville Nutcracker Village and Advent Market, Steubenville Visitor Ctr., 120 S. 3rd St., Steubenville. Free. Over 150 large-as-life, unique nutcrackers are stationed under a canopy of lights and holiday decorations throughout the downtown and Fort Steuben Park 24/7. Also enjoy hayrides, the Holly Trolley, children’s activities, music, crafts, and much more. 740283-4935 or www.steubenvillenutcrackervillage.com. DEC. 2–5, 9–23, 26–30 – Deck the Hall: “Lights, Cameras, Christmas!,” Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens, 714 N. Portage Path, Akron, 5–8 p.m. The gardens and

SOUTHEAST

THROUGH DEC. 19 – Santa Train, Hocking Valley Scenic Railway, Nelsonville Depot, 33 W. Canal St., Nelsonville, Sat./Sun. 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.; 6 p.m. on Dec. 3, 10, and 17. $16–$21. Santa boards the train and visits with each child as the train traverses the historic Hocking River Valley. Each coach is decorated and heated, Christmas music plays throughout the train, and each child receives a special candy cane treat! 855-3233768, 740-753-9531, or www.hvsry.org/train-rides/santa. THROUGH JAN. 1 – Dickens Victorian Village, downtown Cambridge. Stroll the streets to view scenes depicting life in 1850s England, featuring life-sized, handmade mannequins wearing real vintage clothing. 740-421-4956 or www.dickensvictorianvillage.com.

grounds will be decorated with 1 million holiday lights, the perfect setting for a brisk winter stroll. Inside the Manor House, family favorites and classic movies will be staged in 21 spaces, and 25 decorated trees create a festive atmosphere throughout. 330-836-5533 or www.stanhywet.org. DEC. 2–5, 9–24 – Vendor Village Artisan Pop-up Market, Crocker Park, 177 Market St., Westlake, 12–8 p.m. Arts and crafts, pictures with Santa, Santa’s sleigh, and PolarX Ornament gift shop. 216-233-6467 or on Facebook. DEC. 3–5, 10–26 – Drive-Thru Holiday Lights, Medina Co. Fgds., 720 W. Smith Rd., Medina, Fri./Sat. 6–10 p.m., Sun. and weeknights 6–9 p.m. $10 per car, $20 per small bus/van, $50 per large bus. 330-723-9633. DEC. 11–12, JAN. 15–16 – Medina Gun Show, Medina County Fgds. Community Center, 735 Lafayette Rd., Medina, Sat. 9 a.m.–5 p.m., Sun. 9 a.m.–3 p.m. $7. 450 tables of displays. 330-948-4400 or www. conraddowdell.com. DEC. 16–17 – “The Akron Nutcracker: A Holiday in the Rubber City,” E.J. Thomas Hall, University of Akron, 198 Hill St., Akron, 7:30 p.m. $20, Stds. $15. https://calendar. uakron.edu/ej. DEC. 18 – TubaChristmas, E.J. Thomas Hall, University of Akron, 198 Hill St., Akron, 12–1:30 p.m. Free for audience, $10 for performers. Hundreds of tubas, lights, and singalongs combine for a magical afternoon. 330972-8301, concerts@uakron.edu, or https://calendar. uakron.edu/ej.

THROUGH JAN. 1 – Guernsey County Courthouse Holiday Light Show, Cambridge, 5:30–9 p.m. nightly. See animated light displays and thousands of pulsating lights synchronized to holiday music. 800-933-5480 or www.dickensvictorianvillage.com. THROUGH JAN. 2 – Winterfest, Boneyfiddle Historic District Market Square, Portsmouth. The Market Square will be transformed into a winter wonderland this holiday season, with skating, millions of lights, snow tubing, carriage rides, vendor village and gift shop, and more than a few surprises! www.friendsofportsmouth. com/winterfest. DEC. 1–31 – Holiday Tree Walk, East Muskingum Park, 310 Front St., Marietta. See beautifully decorated live trees lining the walkway to the gazebo in the park. Enjoy the attraction the whole month of December! www. mariettamainstreet.org. DEC. 3–5, 10–12 – A Mountain Holiday with Timberworks Lumberjack Show, Sugarloaf Mountain Amphitheatre, 5968 Marietta Rd., Chillicothe, 12–7 p.m. $20 per car. Shopping, refreshments, entertainment, tomahawk throwing lessons, and lumberjack entertainment. www.visitchillicotheohio.com/events. DEC. 11–12 – Chillicothe Christmas Tour of Homes, beginning on Caldwell Street, Chillicothe, Sat. 4–8

38   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021

DEC. 18 – Winter Avant-Garde Art and Craft Show, Emerald Event Center, 33040 Just Imagine Dr., Avon, 10 a.m.–5 p.m. $3, under 12 free. Artists and crafters selling their original handmade items. Full concession stand on-site. www.avantgardeshows.com. DEC. 19 – Flea Market of Collectables, Medina County Fgds. Community Center, 735 Lafayette Rd., Medina, 9 a.m.–3 p.m. $2. Early bird special admission: 6–9 a.m., $3. A treasure trove of vintage items and collectables. 330-948-4300 or www.conraddowdell.com. DEC. 19 – Mannheim Steamroller Christmas with Chip Davis, E.J. Thomas Hall, University of Akron, 198 Hill St., Akron, 7 p.m. $10-$75. https://calendar.uakron.edu/ej. DEC. 27–31 – After Christmas Sale at Tis the Season, 4363 St. Rte. 39, Berlin. Save 50% storewide (collectibles not included) at Ohio’s largest year-round Christmas shop. 330-893-3604 or www.tistheseasonchristmas.com. JAN. 8 – Mohican Winterfest, 131 W. Main St., Loudonville, 8 a.m.–5 p.m. Free. Family-friendly event featuring Olympic Ice Carvings and the Model Train Expo. 419-994-2519 or http://loudonvillechamber.com/events. JAN. 8 – Snow Dogs Train Show, UAW Hall, 5615 Chevrolet Blvd., Parma, 10 a.m.–3 p.m. $6, under 12 free. All-gauge show with over 150 tables of trains and toys. Operating layouts of several gauges. Food available. 440-833-4366, jvendlinger@gmail.com, or www.cvsga. com. Due to possible extension of COVID protocols, show cancellation may be possible; check website or call 330-633-9097 for the latest information.

p.m., Sun. 1–4 p.m. $20. Tour twelve historic downtown homes beautifully decorated for Christmas. www. visitchillicotheohio.com/events. DEC. 17 – Phil Dirt and the Dozers, Majestic Theatre, 45 E. Second St., Chillicothe, 7:30 p.m. $20–$22. Fans of all ages can enjoy a family-friendly stroll through the band’s oldies-but-goodies along with some of their favorite Christmas songs. www.majesticchillicothe.net. DEC. 18 – KAVAN: An Elvis Christmas Show, Majestic Theatre, 45 E. Second St., Chillicothe, 7:30 p.m. $18–$25. www.majesticchillicothe.net. DEC. 29 – Visit with the Pioneers, Campus Martius Museum, 601 Second St., Marietta, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Visit the home of General Rufus Putnam to meet with some of Marietta’s citizens from the early 19th century. 740-3733750 or www.campusmartiusmuseum.org. DEC. 31 – New Year’s Eve Train and Fireworks, Hocking Valley Scenic Railway, Nelsonville Depot, 33 W. Canal St., Nelsonville, 10:30 p.m.–12:30 a.m. $22–$35. Snacks provided. Make reservations by phone or online: 740-249-1452 or www.hvsry.org/trainlist.


shooting stars, floating snowflakes, dancing candy canes and lollipops, giant Christmas trees, and enchanting drive-through tunnels of lights! Find us on Facebook or at www.wonderlightschristmas.com. THROUGH JAN. 15 – Exhibition: “Norman Rockwell’s Home for the Holidays,” Wagnalls Memorial, 150 E. Columbus St., Lithopolis, regular museum hours. Free. On loan from the Norman Rockwell Museum, this traditional holiday collection of Rockwell’s work will inspire feelings of warmth and good cheer while letting you experience the nostalgia of yesteryear. 614-837-4765 or www.wagnallsfoundation.org. THROUGH JAN. 1 – Muskingum County Courthouse DEC. 11–12, 18–19 – Zanesville & Western Scenic Holiday Music and Light Show, Main Street, Zanesville, Railroad Santa Rides, 5700 St. Rte. 204, Mt. Perry, trains Sun.–Thur. 5–9 p.m., Fri./Sat. 5–10 p.m. Free. Get in depart hourly 3–7 p.m. Adults $8, C. (3–13) $5. Ride the the holiday spirit with beautiful lights and festive music! wind in an open gondola car or sit in the coach while www.visitzanesville.com. taking in the scenic countryside. Bring unwrapped new children’s toy in the original packaging or a donation to THROUGH JAN. 2 – Butch Bando’s Fantasy of the local food pantry for a discounted ride. 674-595-9701 Lights, Alum Creek State Park Campgrounds, 3311 S. or www.zwsr.org. Old State Rd., Delaware, Sun.–Thur. 5:30–9:30 p.m., Fri./Sat. 5:30–10 p.m. Per car: $20 weekdays, $30 DEC. 14, JAN. 11 – Inventors Network Meetings, weekends. Season passes available. A magical, 3-mile virtual, 7 p.m. Educational presentations and discussion drive-through light show. 614-412-3499 or https:// about the invention process. December’s meeting butchbandosfantasyoflights.com. will focus on digital marketing to sell your invention; January’s meeting will discuss finding the best patent THROUGH JAN. 4 – State Auto’s Christmas Corner, lawyer. 614-470-0144 or www.inventorscolumbus.com. 518 E. Broad St., Columbus. Historic life-sized Nativity display can be seen daily 6–8 a.m., 5–11:30 p.m. DEC. 18–19 – Scott Antique Market, Ohio Expo Ctr., weekdays and Sundays, and until 12:30 a.m. Fridays Bricker and Celeste Bldgs., Columbus, Sat. 9 a.m.–6 and Saturdays. Christmas hours: Christmas Eve 3 p.m. to p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Free; $5 parking. 800–1,200 Christmas Day 8 a.m. www.stateauto.com/Christmas. exhibit booths. www.scottantiquemarkets.com. THROUGH JAN. 9 – WonderLight’s Christmas, Hartford JAN. 7 – First Friday Art Walk, downtown Zanesville, Fgds., 14028 Fairgrounds Rd., Croton, Mon.–Thur. 5:30– 5–8 p.m. Take a stroll through local art galleries housed 10 p.m., Fri.–Sun. 5:30–11 p.m. Open rain, shine, or snow. in historic buildings and chat with the artists behind the Online reservations required. A dazzling drive-through work. Enjoy live music or take a self-guided walking Christmas light show synchronized to traditional and tour of our historic downtown. Food and drink specials rock music, played through your car stereo. Come see available at local restaurants. www.artcozfirstfriday.org.

CENTRAL

SOUTHWEST

THROUGH DEC. 26 – North Pole Express, LM&M Railroad, 16 E. South St., Lebanon. $22–$39; under 2, $5. Advance reservations required. See website for schedule. Spend time with Santa and his elves on this festive train ride. Train cars are decked with holiday lights and decorations, adding to the Christmas cheer. Each passenger will receive a souvenir bell and prepackaged cookie. 513-933-8022 or www.lebanonrr. com/northpole. THROUGH DEC. 30 – A Carillon Christmas, Carillon Historical Park, 1000 Carillon Blvd., Dayton, 5–9 p.m. $8–$12, under 3 free. Dayton’s newest holiday tradition. See the 65-acre park transformed into a winter wonderland of sparkle, magic, and holiday cheer, with concerts, puppet shows, model train displays, food, and more! www.daytonhistory.org/events/special-events/acarillon-christmas.

THROUGH DEC. 30 – Legendary Lights of Clifton Mill, 75 Water St., Clifton, daily 6–9 p.m. (6–8 p.m. on the 24th and 25th). $10, under 4 free. Over 4 million lights illuminate the mill, gorge, riverbanks, trees, and bridge, including a 100-foot “waterfall” of twinkling lights. The winter wonderland includes a miniature village, a Santa Claus museum, a toy collection, and a synchronized lights and music show that features the old covered bridge. www.cliftonmill.com/christmas. THROUGH DEC. 31 – Art at the Mill, Historic Bear’s Mill, 6450 Arcanum-Bear’s Mill Rd., Greenville. This month we showcase the abstract paintings of Liz Zorn and handmade pottery by Millrace Potters. 937-548-5112 or www.bearsmill.org. THROUGH DEC. 31 – Light Up Middletown, Smith Park, 500 Tytus Ave., Middletown, 6–10 p.m. daily. A drive-through fantasy light display. See Santa and Mrs. Claus every Friday and Saturday evening, 7–9 p.m. www.lightupmiddletown.org. THROUGH JAN. 2 – Christmas at the Junction, EnterTRAINment Junction, 7379 Squire Court, West Chester. See the magic of Christmas at the home of the world’s largest indoor train display. Take the family on a “Journey to the North Pole” where you can meet Santa and Mrs. Claus. 513-898-8000 or www. entertrainmentjunction.com. THROUGH JAN. 2 – Journey Borealis, Pyramid Hill Sculpture Park and Museum, 1763 Hamilton-Cleves Rd., Hamilton. Mon.–Thur. 6–9 p.m., Fri.–Sun. 6–10 p.m. $20–$25 per car. This 2.5-mile, one-of-a-kind,

JAN. 7–9 – Columbus Build, Remodel, and Landscape Expo, Ohio Expo Center, Kasich Hall, Columbus, Fri. 12–7 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m.–7 p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.–5 p.m. $6, under 18 free. From top-quality exhibits, to informative seminars, to insightful demonstrations, you’ll discover thousands of smart, stylish, and cost-effective ways to design or renovate your home. www.homeshowcenter.com. JAN. 7–16 – Ohio RV and Boat Show, Ohio Expo Center, 717 E. 17th St., Columbus, Wed.–Fri. 12–8 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m.–8 p.m., Sun. 11 a.m.–5 p.m. Hundreds of campers and boats from over 21 dealers, plus camping gear, equipment, and related products. Discounts available; see website. info@ohiorvandboatshow.com or www.ohiorvandboatshow.com. JAN. 9 – A Bridal Affair Wedding Show, Marriott Columbus Northwest, 5605 Blazer Parkway, Dublin. Free admission, but online registration required. Features the area’s best wedding professionals to help with your wedding day plans, plus giveaways, gift cards, and vendor discounts and specials. www.abridalaffair.net. JAN. 9 – Columbus Paper, Postcard, and Book Show, Ohio Expo Center, Rhodes Bldg., 717 E. 17th St., Columbus, 9 a.m.–4 p.m. $6. Vintage paper collectibles including postcards, books, paper advertisements, trade cards, old photographs, magazines, documents, non-sports cards, military paper items, paper sports collectibles, and protective storage options. 614206-9103 or www.facebook.com/Columbus-PaperShow-134469001768. JAN. 14 – Hey Mavis, Marion Palace Theatre, May Pavilion, 276 W. Center St., Marion, 7:30 p.m. $16. This Cuyahoga Valley quartet connects with audiences across the globe who enjoy a soulful mix of original Appalachian Americana music. 740-383-2101 or www. marionpalace.org.

drive-through holiday light display features more than 1 million lights and holiday art installations created by local and national artists. 513-868-1234 or www. journeyborealis.com. THROUGH JAN. 9 – PNC Festival of Lights, Cincinnati Zoo, 3400 Vine St., Cincinnati, 10 a.m.–9 p.m. $8.50– $22. See the zoo transformed into a “Wild Wonderland”! 4 million LED lights, North Polar Express train ride, Wild Lights show on Swan Lake, and S’mores-n-More stands. Train rides begin at 4 p.m. www.cincinnatizoo.org/ events/festival-of-lights. THROUGH JAN. 26 – Bluegrass Wednesdays, Vinoklet Winery, 11069 Colerain Ave., Cincinnati, Wed. 6:30–8:30 p.m. Enjoy dinner, wine, and an evening of free bluegrass entertainment by Vernon McIntyre’s Appalachian Grass. Reservations strongly recommended. 513-385-9309 or vinokletwinery@fuse.net. JAN. 1 – World Race for Hope 5K, Hobart Arena, 255 Adams St., Troy, 10 a.m.–12 p.m. Free. Join runners and walkers on New Year’s Day to kick off National Slavery Prevention and Human Trafficking Awareness Month. Donations go to support the nonprofit Free To Run Foundation’s awareness and education programs and charity partners. https://runsignup.com/Race/OH/Troy/ WorldRaceforHopeTroy. JAN. 8–9 – Winter Wedding Expo and Fashion Show, Wright State University Nutter Ctr., McLin Gym, 3640 Colonel Glenn Hwy., Dayton, 11 a.m.–3 p.m. Register online. Giveaways, door prizes, demonstrations, and more. www.weddingapolis.com.

DECEMBER 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  39


MEMBER INTERACTIVE

Christmas morning 2

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1.  View on a snowy December day from our front door in Sullivan, Ohio. Jeanette Simme Lorain-Medina Rural Electric Cooperative member 2.  Santa and Mrs. Claus (aka David and Karen Gump). David and Karen Gump North Central Electric Cooperative members 3.  I scream! You scream! We all scream for Christmas morning! Amanda Stingley South Central Power Company member 4.  My granddaughter, London Towns, with her cat, Henry, on Christmas morning. Sally Trivanovich South Central Power Company member Below:  Our daughters, Daphne, Dahlia, Rebecca, Kalina, and Seraphina, on Christmas morning! Paul Brissey Butler Rural Electric Cooperative member

Send us your picture! For March, send “Storm’s brewing” by Dec. 15; for April, send “Scout’s honor” by Jan. 15. Upload your photos at www.ohiocoopliving.com/memberinteractive. Your photo may be featured in our magazine or on our website.

40   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  •  DECEMBER 2021


Winter Energy Efficiency Tips

Check the furnace filter monthly and change it when needed. Try LED lights: they stay cool, reducing the risk of fire, and use up to 80% less energy than traditional bulbs. Use timers inside and out to give your decorations and your electric bill a break. Avoid running cords under rugs or in places where your animal friends might be tempted to chew.


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