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COOPERATIVE Pioneer Electric Cooperative

First flight

Aspiring pilots get a sneak peek

ALSO INSIDE Dolly Parton’s co-op connection There’s gold in those Ohio hills! Where the child things are

Building the next generation of


We’re building the next generation of leaders by supporting their education through programs like college scholarships, youth leadership programs, Be E3 Smart energy curriculum for elementary through high school classrooms, and energy efficiency demonstrations. Contact your electric cooperative to learn more about its youth programs.



INSIDE FEATURES 14 GIVE A HOOT Professor asks co-op members to help out on a study of Ohio’s owls.

24 GLACIAL GOLD Icy visitors from geologic eras past left Ohio with a tiny but valuable gift.

26 WHERE THE CHILD THINGS ARE Findlay’s Mazza Museum holds the largest collection of picture-book art in the world.

30 WILD HOGS State officials can use your help to hold down the population of feral pigs.

32 20TH-CENTURY AUDUBON Cincinnati’s John Ruthven made his name with detailed illustrations of fauna from far and wide. Cover image on most editions: 12-year-old Sam Gross of West Chester, Ohio, prepares for a flight with Bob Jenkins. Sam’s grandfather, Ohio Cooperative Living Outdoors Editor Chip Gross, writes about the First Flight program on page 8.



Ring in 2021


new year is upon us. Change seems more welcome than in most years.

As we look forward to 2021, we hope for a lessening impact of COVID and a return to “more normal” social interactions. We will take away from 2020 lessons learned on remote and virtual events that provide us with new tools for business and life. The new presidential administration potentially signals a transition in the rules and regulations governing the energy sector, but regardless of the change that may bring, Ohio’s 24 electric cooperatives are poised to respond in the best interests of you, our members. However 2021 unfolds, your electric cooperative has plans for continued improvements in its operations to be safer, more reliable, and more costcompetitive, all with reduced environmental impact. We will continue to emphasize and demonstrate concern for the communities we serve through continuation of long-standing programs like Operation Round Up, as well as via the growth of newer programs. One of our brightest initiatives shines a light on our youngest members. This past year, several Ohio electric cooperatives began a partnership with Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library — the not-for-profit organization founded in 1995 to bolster childhood literacy by distributing millions of free books to children from birth to age 5. Here in Ohio, the Governor’s Imagination Library program partners with local affiliates like Mid-Ohio Energy Cooperative, Midwest Electric, North Central Electric Cooperative, Paulding Putnam Electric Cooperative, and Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives in Allen, Mercer, Seneca, Van Wert, and Highland counties; to date, we have enrolled nearly 4,000 children. Learn more about it by checking out the story on page 4. Thank you for your continued patronage and support of your local electric cooperative. Wishing each of you a happy and blessed new year!



We will take away from 2020 lessons learned on remote and virtual events that provide us with new tools for business and life.

JANUARY 2021 • Volume 63, No. 4

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




Patrick O’Loughlin President & CEO Patrick Higgins Director of Communications Jeff McCallister Managing Editor Rebecca Seum Associate Editor Anita Cook Graphic Designer Contributors: Colleen Romick Clark, Victoria Ellwood, W.H. “Chip” Gross, Catherine Murray, Craig Springer, and Kevin Williams. 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.


A book for every child: Electric cooperatives work with Dolly Parton and Gov. DeWine to expand the Imagination Library across Ohio.



Harrison Rural Electrification Association: West Virginia’s only electric cooperative brings electricity and, soon, broadband to its vibrant community.



First flight: Consolidated Cooperative member shows how taking an airplane ride can change a life.


Red fox, gray fox, and wily coyote: They may seem similar, but each competes differently as a top-tier predator in Ohio.



On the menu: Enjoy restaurant mainstays that you make yourself.

For all advertising inquiries, contact

19 LOCAL PAGES News and information from your

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


electric cooperative.

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.


Mask fashion: Members have some fun while staying safe.


What’s happening: January/February events and other things to see and do around the state.


Visit Ohio Cooperative Living magazine online at www.ohiocoopliving.com! Read past issues and watch videos about our articles or our recipes. Our new 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.

www.ohiocoopliving.com JANUARY 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  3


A book for every child Electric cooperatives partner with Dolly Parton and Gov. DeWine to expand the Imagination Library across the state. BY JEFF MCCALLISTER


alerie Williams knew she wanted in from the moment she heard that the Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library/Ohio Governor’s Imagination Library program was coming to Highland County. As coordinator of the Family and Children First Council and director of Highland County’s Early Head Start program, Williams is keenly aware of the influence of books to power a child’s development — and as a mother of two young children, she wanted every tool at her disposal. When Ohio first lady Fran DeWine announced the program’s expansion into Highland County last March, Williams was not only one of those instrumental in promoting the program in the county, she was among the first to sign up. Her sons, 4-year-old Porter and 1-year-old Moxley, now each get an age-appropriate book in the mail every month at no cost to the family.


“Obviously, Moxley doesn’t realize what a big deal this is yet, but Porter loves getting the books in the mail — he’s so excited it has his name on it — and will sit down with it right away and pretend to read. He’s not quite reading yet, but honestly, getting a book every month has him excited about the prospect, and that’s so important.” Parton and her foundation have gifted more than 150 million books and have 1.7 million participants worldwide. The program is available to every child in Ohio, as partnerships with local funding agencies in all 88 counties match grant money provided by Gov. Mike DeWine and the state legislature to pay the entire cost of sending one book every month to kids from birth through their fifth birthday. “This effort by so many of us is going to make a huge difference for our kids,” Fran DeWine said at the launch of the Highland County program. “Reading is one of the single greatest things we can do for our kids and with our kids. It’s really an indicator of how they’re going to

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library/ Ohio Governor’s Imagination Library has no income restrictions. Visit www.imaginationlibrary.com to enroll. do later on in life. Brain science shows us that by the time a child turns 3 years old, 80% of their brain is developed. We can’t waste those early years — those are critical to their development. We want to make sure every child enters kindergarten with a good, strong start.” Ohio electric cooperatives have been instrumental in making sure books are available across the state. The Community Foundation of Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives signed on as the partner in Highland County, while Midwest Electric, Mid-Ohio Energy Cooperative, Paulding Putnam Electric Cooperative, and North Central Electric Cooperative joined as partners in Allen, Mercer, Seneca, and Van Wert counties, where the program was having trouble finding partners. It makes perfect sense for electric cooperatives to have gotten involved, says Patrick O’Loughlin, president and CEO of Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives, the co-op statewide service organization. “You can see how Dolly Parton’s rural roots align with our rural territory,” O’Loughlin says. “With everything that’s happened in the past year with COVID, what could be better than trying to connect young children and their families by trying to provide them resources?” “Being a community-minded organization, this is one way we thought we could reach out to younger members,” says Matt Berry, general manager at Midwest Electric, which sponsors or co-sponsors programs in three counties. “We understand the core, critical importance of literacy and want to do all we can to help out with that.” At the same time, there’s certainly room to grow. DeWine’s office estimates there are more than 700,000 children eligible to sign up to receive books, but only about a third of them are currently on the rolls. “We know the program makes a difference, and we’re doing everything we can to promote it to every child that we know how to reach,” Williams says. “We would love to see every child in the state sign up to start receiving books.”

Valerie Williams reads with her sons, Porter, 4, and Moxley, 1, from a book they received from the Dolly Parton Imagination Library. The program provides one book every month to any child from the time they’re born through their fifth birthday.

Ohio co-op sponsors Allen County: sponsored by Midwest Electric and Mid-Ohio Energy Highland County: sponsored by The Community Foundation of Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives Mercer County: sponsored by Midwest Electric Seneca County: sponsored by North Central Electric Cooperative Van Wert County: sponsored by Paulding Putnam Electric Cooperative and Midwest Electric





arrison Rural Electrification Association (HREA) is unique because it is the only electric cooperative in West Virginia. Serving 7,742 consumermembers, HREA spans seven counties on 828 miles of electrical line. With such a wide service area, HREA’s territory contains many attractions and sites that further contribute to the surrounding area.

So much to do The area covered by HREA is a vibrant community. Visitors can explore multiple festivals throughout the year, including the West Virginia Italian Heritage Festival, the West Virginia Black Heritage Festival, the Greek Food Festival, and events such as the Cecil Jarvis Greater Clarksburg 10K. In Clarksburg, there’s a rich public arts and entertainment industry. Clarksburg Amphitheater hosts live music, movies, and other events. There’s also the Robinson Grand Performing Arts Center for productions and programs appealing to all ages.

USDA ReConnect Program Recently, HREA received a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture for a program to bring optical fiber lines to its members. The grant provides funds for construction, facilities, and equipment needed to bring broadband service to rural areas. HREA is firmly committed to its community, and the Broadband ReConnect Program reinforces that ideal. HREA is partnering with Prodigi “Fiber to the Home” for the initiative to bring broadband service to rural areas in West Virginia and ensure access for its consumermembers. The project aims to build over 410 miles of fiber routes to provide high-speed internet, voice, and TV services.

Co-op Spotlight appears regularly in Ohio Cooperative Living to give a glimpse into the land and the people of Ohio’s 24 electric cooperatives.




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First Flight Consolidated Cooperative member shows how an airplane ride can change a life. STORY AND PHOTOS BY W.H. “CHIP” GROSS


osh Maihle of Columbus still remembers the first airplane ride he ever took. “I remember I was just 6 years old and riding in the backseat of a small, yellow private plane,” says Maihle. “It was a gorgeous summer evening, and as we left the ground, it was the most amazing feeling I’d ever experienced — I felt like Superman.” The experience shaped the rest of his life. He went on to become a professional flight instructor, which he did for many years. It may never have happened if not for Bob Jenkins of Fredericktown. Bob and his wife, Jill — members of Consolidated Cooperative in north-central Ohio — own two small, vintage aircraft. “We own a 1947 Cessna 120 and a 1946 Piper J-3 Cub,” says Bob. “I also co-own a 1972 Cessna 172 with my son, Shawn.” Jenkins has been flying for more than 50 years, ever since his father taught him to fly. He made his first solo flight at age 16 and earned his private pilot’s license in his early 20s. “What I enjoy most about flying is the feeling of freedom when I’m up in the air, and the different perspective you get looking down on the earth,” Jenkins says. “Flying, for me, can turn a mediocre or even a bad day into a good


“Their reaction is usually one of excitement in anticipating the flight and then, upon landing, they’re very glad they did it. It gives them a real sense of accomplishment.” — Bob Jenkins day. Most of my flights now are not long, cross-country trips, but rather just flying over the neighborhood near our home on evenings with calm winds.” Jenkins also enjoys taking young people on their first airplane ride; he estimates that he has taken hundreds of kids up for their “first flight,” as he did for Maihle way back when. “Their reaction is usually one of excitement in anticipating the flight and then, upon landing, they’re very glad they did it. It gives them a real sense of accomplishment,” he says. “I remember one little girl who at first was hesitant to go up, but once we landed she asked to go again, so I took her for a second ride.”

If you’re a parent or grandparent who would like to give a child the gift of a unique, new experience, there’s a way to arrange a “first flight” for free. “The Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) is a nationwide organization of aviation enthusiasts with chapters in every state,” says Jenkins. “Many of our members volunteer to take young people on their first airplane ride at no cost. It’s called the Young Eagles program, and more than 2.1 million kids, ages 8 to 18, have safely participated thus far.” Whether a young person eventually decides to become a pilot or not, kids today are in need of positive adult role models and wholesome life experiences more than ever. Who knows, maybe a “first flight” could change the direction of your young person’s life — it did for Josh Maihle. W.H. “Chip” Gross (whchipgross@gmail.com) is Ohio Cooperative Living’s Outdoors Editor.

To contact the Experimental Aircraft Association here in Ohio about a “first flight,” click on www.eaa.org/eaa/ youth/free-ye-flights/ become-a-young-eagle. Coronavirus threat level may reduce availability.

Bob and Jill Jenkins, members of Consolidated Cooperative; opposite page: Bob Jenkins (left) and 12-year-old Sam Gross after a First Flight.



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Red fox, gray fox, and wily coyote They may seem similar, but each competes differently as a top-tier predator. STORY AND PHOTOS BY W.H. “CHIP” GROSS


hen wild animals face a change in their environment, they have three options: adapt, migrate, or die. When those animals happen to be three top-tier predators attempting to occupy the same habitat, things can get dicey. Red and gray foxes have been living alongside one another in what today is the Buckeye State for hundreds of years. Issues started, however, during the last half-century, when eastern coyotes arrived and quickly filled all 88 counties. According to Katie Dennison, furbearer biologist for the Ohio Division of Wildlife, an annual survey indicates “a long-term declining trend in red fox and gray fox sightings since the survey began in 1990, which is indicative of a decline in both fox populations in Ohio. However, the trend does appear to have leveled off during the past five to seven years.” Dennison adds that the survey relies on deer-bowhunter observations, so “is biased toward describing fox population trends in rural areas.” The severe drop in fox numbers is no doubt due, at least in part, to competition by coyotes. As a result, are foxes — especially red foxes — now denning closer to human habitation to avoid coyotes, which are more sensitive to human activity?

Coyotes have been muscling in on the habitats of both red and gray foxes since the last half-century and are now in all 88 counties in Ohio.


The evidence, thus far, is mainly anecdotal, but Dennison knows of at least one recent scientific study in the Buckeye State, conducted on Cleveland Metroparks properties, that has looked at the possibility. “There has been some research in Ohio that has looked into habitat partitioning between red fox and coyote, and it does indeed find support for red fox possibly finding ‘refuge’ from coyotes by using more highly developed areas.”

I have had red foxes denning near my rural home in north-central Ohio for the past several years and know other people who have, as well. My fox family maintains multiple den sites within sight of my house — three that I know of — which my wife and I keep tabs on with binoculars and a trail camera. The dens are spaced about 200 yards apart and are a similar distance from the house. The mother fox, known as a vixen, occasionally moves her young from den to den, which is not unusual for red foxes. Her mate, known as the dog fox, helps by bringing food to the den for the female and kits.

Gray foxes are behaviorally more similar to cats than to dogs and can even climb trees.

As they grow, the young foxes are a hoot to watch. Doing what puppies everywhere do, they spend their days chasing, pouncing, and wrestling with one another — developing muscles and hunting skills they’ll need when they eventually leave the den to strike out on their own. By the way, if you’ve never heard a fox bark, it’s worth doing an online search to hear. A loud, otherworldly sound, it literally makes the hair on the back of your neck stand up, especially when emanating from dark

woods at night. It’s as if space aliens, Bigfoot, or both have finally found you and are closing in. Before the arrival of coyotes in Ohio, how did red and gray foxes coexist in the same areas? Behaviorally, gray foxes are more catlike — they can even climb trees for a few feet — whereas red foxes are more doglike. As a result, the two fox species can occupy the same general habitat but primarily use different parts of it, known as niches. For instance, gray foxes prefer mainly dense, brushy areas, while red foxes prefer more open, developed country. Coyotes, on the other hand, will use either habitat — and that, as they say, is the rub. Being nearly twice the size and weight of both fox species, coyotes have essentially become the “big bullies” in the neighborhood, and they are not looking to leave town anytime soon. While nature may seem serene to us as humans, it is anything but — and constantly changing. In reality, life in the wild is a daily struggle for animals to defend territory, find food, and raise young. In short: adapt, migrate, or die.

Young red foxes are a blast to watch — playing much the same way that puppies do.



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 JANUARY 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  13

give a

hoot Wintering-owl study needs your help. STORY AND PHOTOS BY W.H. “CHIP” GROSS


octurnal, secretive, and steeped in folklore, owls are cryptic wild critters that give up the details of their lives only grudgingly. Blake Mathys, a member of Marysville-based Union Rural Electric Cooperative, hopes to shine a little light on the subject this winter. Saw-whet owl

Mathys, an associate professor of environmental science at Ohio Dominican University, has started the Central Ohio Owl Project (COOP) to better document wintering owls in Ohio — especially rarer species like barn owls, long-eared owls, and northern saw-whet owls. “My main reason for developing the project is that, for a number of reasons, owl sightings often don’t get reported, even by citizen-scientists and serious birders,” Mathys says. “I want to provide a secure outlet to get a better idea of the true numbers of owls in our state during the winter months.”

What Mathys is requesting is that anyone spotting an owl this winter — anywhere, of any species, on private or public land — report the sighting to him online at www. ohiodominican.edu/owlproject, where there’s a form that asks users where they saw the owl, the species (if known), plus a few other basic questions. “If you can get close enough to take a photograph of the owl, that would be helpful for positive identification,” Mathys says. “Your owl sighting might even be eligible for a small cash reward.” Mathys also stresses that the locations provided will be kept strictly confidential and the information used only for research purposes. All three of the study’s main owl species are either threatened in Ohio (barn owl) or a species of special concern (long-eared owl and northern saw-whet owl), so information about their wintering habits, habitats, and numbers could prove helpful in their conservation. Look for barn owls in or near structures, such as old barns, silos, and sheds. Long-eared owls and northern saw-whet owls are found roosting primarily in evergreen trees during winter. “Owls have always been one of my favorite groups of birds, and for a long time I’ve been convinced that there are many more owls around than people realize,” Mathys says. “I would very much appreciate the assistance of any fellow electric co-op members who would like to participate in the study.”

Barn owl



On the menu You can turn these restaurant favorites into mainstays on your home menu, as well. RECIPES AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY CATHERINE MURRAY

FRIDAY NIGHT SPINACH ARTICHOKE DIP Prep: 10 minutes | Cook: 35 minutes | Servings: 10 8 ounces 1/3 less fat cream 10 ounces frozen chopped cheese, softened spinach, thawed and drained 10-ounce jar Alfredo-style 14-ounce can artichoke hearts, pasta sauce drained and chopped 4 cloves garlic, minced 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional) 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese Preheat oven to 350 F. In a large bowl, thoroughly mix together cream cheese, Alfredo sauce, garlic, red pepper flakes, spinach, and artichoke hearts, then mix in mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses. Cover with foil and bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until melted and bubbly. Remove foil and continue baking another 5 to 10 minutes to brown the cheese on top. Serve warm with tortilla chips, baguette, crackers, or cut-up raw vegetables. Per serving: 236 calories, 12 grams fat (7.5 grams saturated fat), 34 milligrams cholesterol, 1,779 milligrams sodium, 18.5 grams total carbohydrates, 2 grams fiber, 11 grams protein. JANUARY 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  15

DESSERT MENU CRÈME BRÛLÉE Prep: 30 minutes | Cook: 40 minutes | Chill: 2 hours | Servings: 6 2 cups heavy cream 5 egg yolks 1 teaspoon vanilla 1/2 cup granulated sugar, divided Pour cream and vanilla into a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Slowly bring to a simmer, stirring every few minutes for 10 to 15 minutes. Cream will be steaming but not boiling and vanilla will be fragrant. Remove from heat. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together egg yolks and half of the sugar (1/4 cup) until pale yellow and thick. With whisk in hand, very slowly begin adding cream to yolk mixture, whisking constantly. (If added too quickly, eggs will cook.) Continue until cream is fully incorporated. Preheat oven to 325 F. Divide custard into 6 ramekins, about 3/4 full. (Any shallow, oven-safe dish can be used, or use one large dish, such as a pie pan.) Place ramekins in a tall


roasting pan or casserole dish. Slowly add enough hot water to the bottom of the pan until it comes about halfway up the sides of the ramekins, making sure they don’t begin to float. Bake until barely set (top will have a thin film but underneath it will jiggle a little bit), about 20 to 40 minutes, depending on the depth of the dishes. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate for 2 hours. Sprinkle about 2 teaspoons of sugar on top of each custard and caramelize with a kitchen torch (or under the broil setting in the oven), being careful not to burn. Serve immediately. Per serving: 247 calories, 19 grams fat (11 grams saturated fat), 230 milligrams cholesterol, 22 milligrams sodium, 18 grams total carbohydrates, 0 grams fiber, 3 grams protein.

ANCHOVY-FREE CAESAR SALAD Prep: 20 minutes | Cook: 10 minutes | Servings: 8 4 cups cubed French baguette 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese, divided 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon pepper 3/4 cup olive oil, divided 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice Heat oven to 375 F. In a large bowl, toss cubed bread with 1 tablespoon of the grated Parmesan, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, and 3 tablespoons of the olive oil. Spread evenly onto a baking sheet and bake 10 to 15 minutes, until golden brown. With a blender or food processor, thoroughly blend remaining grated Parmesan and olive oil, lemon juice, olives and juice, capers, garlic, and basil. Taste and adjust ingredients as

15 green olives, plus 1 tablespoon olive juice 15 capers 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 tablespoon basil 2 large heads romaine lettuce, washed and chopped into large pieces ¼ cup Parmesan cheese (shredded or shaved) needed. If dressing is too thick, add a few tablespoons water. Refrigerate. Makes about 1 cup of dressing. When ready to serve, toss lettuce in dressing, then top with croutons and shredded/shaved Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately. Makes 8 side salads. Per serving: 215 calories, 21 grams fat (4 grams saturated fat), 5 milligrams cholesterol, 597 grams sodium, 5.5 grams total carbohydrates, 1 gram fiber, 3 grams protein.


CLASSIC ITALIAN BRUSCHETTA Prep: 30 minutes | Cook: 10 minutes | Servings: 4 (approximately 4 slices per serving) 1 wide loaf Italian bread 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, divided 10 roma tomatoes 2 tablespoons balsamic 3 tablespoons extra-virgin vinegar olive oil, divided handful of basil leaves 3 garlic cloves, peeled (one (no stems) cut in half, two minced) 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided Note: Bread can be toasted in the oven or grilled. Leaving the skin on, cut each tomato in half. Using your fingers or a spoon, remove and discard the seeds and excess liquid. Chop tomatoes into quarter-inch chunks. In a medium bowl, lightly toss tomatoes, 1 tablespoon olive oil, minced garlic, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, and balsamic vinegar. Refrigerate. Preheat oven to 450 F. Cut the Italian loaf into ½-inchthick slices. Lightly brush both sides with remaining olive oil. Lay each slice flat on a cookie sheet. Rub garlic halves across the top of the bread and sprinkle tops with remaining salt and pepper. Bake until lightly browned, about 5 minutes per side. Stack basil leaves on top of each other, roll up like a cigar, then thinly slice with a sharp knife. Add basil to tomato mixture right before serving. Top bread with tomatoes; serve immediately. Per serving: 187 calories, 11 grams fat (2 grams saturated fat), 0 milligrams cholesterol, 532 grams sodium, 20 grams total carbohydrates, 4 grams fiber, 4 grams protein.

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, see a video of a couple of these tasty dishes being prepared.





THE CO-OP COMMUNITY Tradition, pride, and dedication create effective outage restoration teams. When a major storm knocks out power for you and your neighbors, there’s a good chance help from Pioneer is already on the way and co-ops from around the state and country are ready to help when they receive the call. That lightning-fast response comes from a combination of a centuries-old co-op tradition, the latest in weather forecasting technology, a cooperative contract between electric cooperatives and municipal utilities, and lineworkers’ spirit. When a power outage is caused by an especially severe natural disaster, the devastation can be more than Pioneer can quickly repair on its own. That’s when other co-ops swoop in, from next door and sometimes, from other states. They arrive in caravans of utility vehicles as part of a plan called a mutual aid agreement. That was the case for EnergyUnited, the largest electric cooperative in North Carolina, in late October. Due to the effects of Tropical Storm Zeta, they had 25 electric cooperatives and contractors assist in the restoration effort of more than 44,000 members who experienced outages between Oct. 28 and Nov. 5. Pioneer was one of 11 cooperatives from Ohio to respond to the call for mutual aid. We were able to send one crew, including Leader Lineman John Holcomb and third-year Lineman Trainee Corbin Meckstroth, in addition to our Manager of Safety and Construction Steve McClay, who helped to manage and lead Ohio crews during the week-long restoration effort. For Pioneer, our last severe natural disaster was an ice storm in 2005. We had co-ops from Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, and two local municipalities help restore service.

A simple, one-page contract When electric co-ops were formed in the 1930s, they based mutual aid agreements on the sixth cooperative principle, “Cooperation Among Cooperatives,” and used

a handshake-style working arrangement. Ron Salyer But in the 1990s, the PRESIDENT & CEO Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) requested a more legalistic accounting for the aid it provided to electric cooperatives after natural disasters. So electric co-ops, represented by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA), got together with FEMA and the organization for city-owned utilities, the American Public Power Association, and produced an incredibly short contract — one page long to be exact. The contract says when one co-op goes to help another, it will charge reasonable rates for the crews and equipment. The simplicity of that arrangement fits the tradition of cooperatives cooperating with each other. It is a natural extension of who we are, here in Ohio and across the country. Helping each other is what we do naturally as part of our co-op family, and you never know when you might need the favor returned. The response to your power outage can start days before it even happens, with co-ops tracking weather patterns. Ohio’s Electric Cooperatives, the statewide services organization for the 24 Ohio electric co-ops, coordinates mutual aid efforts, whether needed here or provided to another state, so that local co-ops can continue to focus on their priorities. They plan for how many crews might be needed and where they will come from — and even make hotel reservations for crews. In addition to the careful planning and procedures, there’s a reason why co-ops come together in a crisis so effectively — that’s the lineworkers. When they head out to a storm-ravaged area, they are excited to use their skills for a cause they passionately believe in — restoring electricity. This is what they do. They get the lights back on.




HEALTH Terah Stewart has something for everyone — 101 different products, to be exact. Terah, a Pioneer member, is the owner of Spot On Nutrition, a new, versatile, upbeat nutritional shake and tea bar in downtown Sidney. Spot On Nutrition focuses on the health and nutrition of each individual.

“This isn’t like work to me. I enjoy this — talking to people and helping them find what works for them,” says Terah. “There are people who can’t have dairy, or people who can only do plant-based, so I help them find what works for them.” Health and wellness are important to Terah, who had three younger siblings pass away in their 40s due to heart problems. He too had blood pressure issues that he couldn’t get under control and was being medicated for. He knew he had to make some changes. Terah started taking tai chi kung fu martial arts classes at a location in Troy where there was also a nutritional shake bar, so he decided to give it a try. On just one shake a day in replacement of a meal, he dropped nearly 30 pounds — and has kept it off for nearly two years. He began to think maybe opening his own shop was something he could do. He started researching. Following the sudden death of a friend who had previously encouraged him to take the leap, Terah


asked himself, “What if I don’t bring this nutrition to people?” Terah credits that friend as the motivation behind all Terah has accomplished so far. He started looking for a location. He went to downtown Sidney, parked, started walking, and stopped at 110 N. Ohio Ave. “They wouldn’t let me see inside, so I was ready to give up and headed to my truck,” says Terah. As he sat in his truck, the owner of the building approached him and encouraged him to take the space, agreeing to remodel the building to his satisfaction. “For every excuse I tried come up with, God gave me an answer, like, you have no reason not to do it,” says Terah. “I just felt like He was saying, ‘I’ve got your back.’” Terah was born in North Carolina, raised in Columbus, and went to DeVry Institute of Technology. When he received a job offer in maintenance and equipment services at Honda in Anna, he relocated to the Shelby County area. He worked for Honda for 28 years and retired 21/2 years ago as a staff and team leader. “I think everything my life went through brought me to this moment — I was a welder, fabricator, and blueprint reader, went to automotive school, worked for Goodyear, went back to school and worked for Honda; I was in maintenance and oversaw

16 technicians and handled budgets, repairs, quotes, and contracts, and now all of a sudden I see how that all followed me,” says Terah. “Everything just fell into place.” He opened the doors to Spot On Nutrition at the end of July 2020 and, despite the pandemic, hasn’t looked back. “The two most important days of your life are the day you were born and the day you find your purpose,” says Terah. “It took me 62 years to realize my purpose.” Terah’s goal is to help people feel better about themselves by giving them the right nutrition. “It doesn’t have to do with age, how young you are or how old you are; it doesn’t matter what color you are — it’s about knowing what you’re supposed to do and stepping into that role,” says Terah. “This is my way of giving back. My goal is to make sure everyone that comes in has a good experience and feels good about themselves.”

SPOT ON NUTRITION 110 N. Ohio Ave. Sidney, Ohio Monday–Friday: 7 a.m.–3:30 p.m. Saturday: 9 a.m.–12:30 p.m.



PIONEER MEMBERS T O V O T E O N CODE CHANGES The Pioneer Board of Trustees is recommending the Pioneer Electric membership adopt several changes to the co-op’s Code of Regulations and one amendment to the Articles of Incorporation. Four of the proposals were first submitted for action at the 2020 annual meeting but could not be acted upon because Ohio’s pandemic state of emergency prohibited an in-person meeting. The other three proposals are new. All fall into one of three categories: the board, meetings, or capital credits. The amendment to the Articles of Incorporation would remove the in-person requirement and permit future voting methods on Code of Regulations changes to be determined by the board. This is consistent with Pioneer’s election method which includes mail and online voting. In the code, additional qualifications for eligibility to serve on the board would prohibit any member from serving if guilty of a criminal offense and would prohibit close relatives from serving on the Pioneer board at the same time. There is new language proposed regarding the removal of a trustee from the Pioneer board, as well as clarification regarding vacancies on the board. The new provisions would be consistent with current Ohio business philosophies and legal considerations. Several sections of the Code of Regulations would be updated to allow for virtual meetings. The governor’s state of emergency declaration took precedence over Pioneer’s provisions for an in-person annual meeting, board meetings, and special meetings and enabled the co-op to move to an electronic format for such business at times during 2020. However, legal counsel agrees that the governing document of the co-op should address


the potential for such meetings in the future. Inperson meetings will remain the preferred method, but the language changes would provide the ability to consider alternatives if deemed necessary. Two proposed changes would simplify capital credit retirements. There is currently no provision for retiring capital credits accumulated in the name of a partnership, business, or corporation if the business is dissolved. Under the change, those capital credits could be refunded to the partners, owners, or stockholders of such a business. The final proposal addresses an issue in our present retirement of capital credits to the estates of deceased members. Upon hearing concerns of our members or their heirs as well as from attorneys, we have been looking for a means to simplify some of these retirements. The proposal would permit members to designate in advance beneficiaries to whom any remaining capital credits would be retired if the member should pass away. Members are encouraged to approve or deny the code of regulation changes in conjunction with the 2021 annual meeting. Changes to the Code of Regulations are highlighted in red throughout the next several pages. ARTICLE I | MEMBERSHIP SECTION 1. Requirements for Membership. Any person whether a natural person or a firm, association, corporation, partnership, body politic or subdivision thereof, will become a member of Pioneer Rural Electric Cooperative, Inc. (hereinafter called the “Cooperative”) upon receipt of electric service from the Cooperative, provided that such person has first:

(a) Made an application for membership therein; (b) Agreed to purchase from the Cooperative electric power and/ or energy as hereinafter specified; (c) Agreed to comply with and be bound by the Articles of Incorporation and Code of Regulations of the Cooperative and any rules and regulations adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Cooperative (hereinafter sometimes called the “Board”). No member may hold more than one membership in the Cooperative, and no membership in the Cooperative shall be transferable, except as provided in this Code of Regulations. SECTION 2. Joint Membership. Individuals may apply for a joint membership and, subject to their compliance with the requirements set forth in Section 1 of this Article, may be accepted for such membership. The term “member” as used in the Code of Regulations shall include individuals holding a joint membership and all provisions relating to the rights and liabilities of membership shall apply equally to the holders of a joint membership. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, the effect of the hereinafter specified actions by or in respect of the holders of a joint membership shall be as follows: (a)The presence at a meeting of any or all shall be regarded as the presence of one member and shall constitute a joint waiver of notice of the meeting; (b)The vote of any one separately or all jointly shall constitute one joint vote; (c)A waiver of notice signed by any or all shall constitute a joint waiver; (d)Notice to any shall constitute notice to all; (e) Expulsion of any shall terminate the joint membership; (f) Withdrawal of any shall terminate the joint membership; and (g)Any one, but not more than one, may be elected or appointed as an officer or Board member, provided that all meet the qualification for such office; (h)Payment of capital credits to any shall constitute payment to all. SECTION 3. Conversion of Membership. (a) A membership may be converted to a joint membership upon the written request of the holder thereof and the agreement by such holder and the other individuals to be included as parties to the joint membership to comply with the Articles of Incorporation, Code of Regulations and rules and regulations adopted by the Board. Upon the death of any individual who is a party to the joint membership, such membership shall be held solely by the survivors provided, however, that the estate of the deceased shall not be released from any debts due the Cooperative. SECTION 4. Joint Ownership with Rights of Survivorship. Married persons in a legally recognized documented relationship may apply for a Joint Membership with Rights of Survivorship, subject to their compliance with

the requirements set forth in Section 1 of this Article, may be accepted for such membership. The term “member” as used in the Code of Regulations shall include individuals holding a joint membership with rights of survivorship and all provisions relating to the rights and liabilities of membership shall apply equally to the holders as a joint membership with rights of survivorship. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, the effect of the hereinafter specified actions by or in respect of the holders of a joint membership with rights of survivorship shall be as follows: (a) The presence at a meeting of any or all shall be regarded as the presence of one member and shall constitute a joint waiver of notice of the meeting; (b) The vote of any one separately or all jointly shall constitute one joint vote; (c) A waiver of notice signed by either spouse shall constitute a joint waiver; (d) Notice to either spouse shall constitute notice to both; (e) Expulsion of any shall terminate the joint membership with rights of survivorship; (f) Withdrawal of either spouse shall terminate the joint membership with rights of survivorship; (g) Either one may be elected or appointed as an officer or a Board member, provided that both meet the qualifications for such office; (h) Payment of capital credits to either spouse shall constitute payment to all; (i) Upon the death of the first joint member with rights of survivorship, the membership shall be held solely by the survivor; and (j) Any accrued but unpaid capital credits shall be assigned to the surviving spouse and shall be paid to the surviving spouse in the same manner as if he or she owned the membership originally as a sole member. SECTION 5. Payable on Death – Designation of Beneficiary. Any individual or joint member may designate “Payable on Death” beneficiaries, upon an approved form provided by the cooperative, to claim capital credits on said patron’s account upon his or her death. Said beneficiary or beneficiaries, as the case may be, may request that the capital credits they are entitled be retired immediately upon such terms and conditions as the Board, acting under policies of general application shall agree upon; provided, however, that the financial condition of the Cooperative will not be impaired by said action. If the beneficiary or beneficiaries fail to request the immediate retirement of capital credits, said credits shall be paid to the beneficiary or beneficiaries as retired by the Cooperative. No designated beneficiary or beneficiaries shall have any membership privileges except the right to receive capital credits as retired by the board. SECTION 56. Purchase of Electric Energy. Each member shall, as soon as electric energy shall be available, purchase from the Cooperative all electric energy purchased for use on the premises specified in the application of membership, and shall pay therefore at


rates which shall from time to time be fixed by the Board. Production or use of electric energy on such premises, regardless of the source thereof, by means of facilities which shall be interconnected with Cooperative facilities, shall be subject to appropriate regulations as shall be fixed from time to time by the Cooperative. It is expressly understood that amounts paid for electric power and/or energy in excess of the cost of service are furnished by the patrons of the Cooperative, whether members or nonmembers, as capital and each patron shall be credited with the capital so furnished as provided in this Code of Regulations. Each patron shall pay all amounts owed by him or her to the Cooperative as and when the same shall become due and payable. SECTION 67. Termination of Membership. Any member may withdraw from membership upon compliance with such uniform terms and conditions as the Board may prescribe. The Board may, by the affirmative vote of not less than two-thirds of all the members of the Board, expel any member who fails to comply with any of the provisions of the Articles of Incorporation, this Code of Regulations, or rules or regulations adopted by the Board, but only if such member shall have been given written notice by the Cooperative that such failure makes him or her liable to expulsion and such failure shall have continued for at least ten days after such notice was given. Any expelled member may be reinstated by vote of the Board or by vote of the members at any annual or special meeting. The membership of a member who for a period of six (6) months after service is available to him or her, has not purchased electric energy from the Cooperative, or of a member who has ceased to purchase energy from the Cooperative, may be cancelled by resolution of the Board. SECTION 78. Service to all Persons within the Cooperative’s Service Area. The Cooperative shall extend electric service to all persons, whether members or non-members, within the Cooperative’s service area who (i) desire such service and (ii) meet all requirements established by the Cooperative as a condition of such service. Conditions for service shall be set forth in the rules and regulations of the Cooperative. All such rules and regulations shall be just, reasonable and not unreasonably discriminatory or preferential. No discrimination or preference shall be made between members and non-member patrons of the Cooperative with respect to rates or terms or conditions of service. As used in the Code of Regulations, the term “service area” shall mean the territory as certified by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio wherein the Cooperative supplies electric power and/or energy or maintains electric


facilities as well as all areas adjacent thereto which are unserved by any other supplier of electric energy, and all areas which are closer to the electric distribution facilities of the Cooperative than to the electric distribution facilities of any other electric supplier. ARTICLE III | MEETING OF MEMBERS SECTION 1. Annual Meeting. The annual meeting of the members shall be held after the month of January in each year beginning with the year 1971 at such place in person, or by video teleconference, or by other electronic means each year within the service area of the Cooperative at a place, date, and time to be fixed annually by the Board of Trustees, which day as selected by the Board and which shall be designated in the notice of the meeting, for the purpose of electing Board members reporting on election results, passing upon reports for the previous fiscal year and transacting such other business as may come before the meeting. It shall be the responsibility of the Board to make adequate preparations for the annual meeting. Failure to hold the annual meeting at the designated time shall not work a forfeiture or dissolution of the Cooperative. In the event that such annual meeting is not held, for any reason, a special meeting in lieu thereof shall be called and held as soon thereafter as convenient, and any business transactions or elections held at such meeting shall be as valid as if transacted or held at the annual meeting. SECTION 2. Special Meetings. Special meetings of the members may be called by resolution of the Board, or upon a written request signed by any three Board members, by the Chair, or by ten per centum or more of all the members, and it shall thereupon be the duty of the Secretary to cause notice of such meeting to be given as hereinafter provided. Special meetings of the members may be held at any place in person, or by video teleconference, or by other electronic means within the service area of the Cooperative as designated by the Board. SECTION 3. Notice of Members’ Meetings. Written or printed notice stating the place, day and hour of the meeting and, in case of a special meeting or an annual meeting at which business requiring special notice is to be transacted, the purpose or purposes for which the meeting is called shall be delivered not less than ten days nor more than twenty-five days before the day of the meeting, either personally or by mail, by or at the direction of the Secretary, or upon a default in duty by the Secretary, by the persons calling the meeting, to each member. If mailed, such notice shall be deemed to be delivered when deposited in the United States mail, addressed to the member at his address as it appears on the records of the Cooperative, with postage thereon prepaid. The failure of any member to receive notice of an annual or special

meeting of the members shall not invalidate any action which may be taken by the members at any such meeting. Notice of adjournment of a members’ meeting need not be given if the time and place to which it is adjourned are fixed and announced at such meeting. SECTION 4. Quorum. The members entitled to vote present in person or represented by proxy at any meeting of the members shall constitute a quorum. SECTION 5. Voting. Each member shall be entitled to one vote and no more upon each matter submitted to a vote at a meeting of the members. All questions shall be decided by a vote of a majority of the members voting thereon in person or by proxy except as otherwise provided by law, the Articles of Incorporation or this Code of Regulations. SECTION 6. Proxies. At all meetings of members, a member may vote by proxy executed in writing by the member. Such proxy shall be filed with the Secretary before or at the time of the meeting. No proxy shall be voted at any meeting of the members unless it shall designate the particular meeting at which it is to be voted, and no proxy shall be voted at any meeting other than the one so designated or any adjournment of such meeting. No member shall vote as proxy for more than three (3) members at any meeting of the members. No proxy shall be valid after sixty (60) days from the date of its execution. The presence of a member at a meeting of the members shall revoke a proxy theretofore executed by him or her and such member shall be entitled to vote at such meeting in the same manner and with the same effect as if a proxy had not been executed. In case of a joint membership, a proxy may be executed by either husband or wife. The presence of either husband or wife at a meeting of the members shall revoke a proxy theretofore executed by either of them and such joint member or members shall be entitled to vote at such meeting in the same manner and with the same effect as if a proxy had not been executed. No person other than a member shall vote a proxy. SECTION 7. Order of Business. The order of business at the annual meeting of the members and, so far as possible, at all other meetings of the members, shall be essentially as follows, except as otherwise determined by the members at such meeting: 1. Reading of the notice of the meeting and proof of the due publication or mailing thereof, or the waiver or waivers of notice of the meeting, as the case may be. 2. Presentation of unapproved minutes of previous meeting of the members and the taking of necessary action thereon. 3. Presentation and consideration of reports of officers, Board members and committees.

4. Election of Board members. 5. Unfinished business. 6. New business. 7. Adjournment. ARTICLE IV | BOARD OF TRUSTEES SECTION 1. General Powers. The entire business and affairs of the Cooperative shall be managed by a board of nine trustees which shall exercise all of the powers of the Cooperative except such as are by law, the Articles of Incorporation or this Code of Regulations conferred upon or reserved to the members. SECTION 2. Election and Tenure of Office. The Board shall divide the service area of the Cooperative into three (3) districts, designated as the Miami Rural Electric Cooperative, Shelby Rural Electric Cooperative, and the Champaign Rural Electric Cooperative, so that equitable representation may be given to the geographic areas served by the Cooperative. The Board shall have the power to change the boundaries of such districts whenever in their opinion the purpose of this Section requires such a change. Each district shall be represented by three Board members. One Board member from each district shall be elected each year by secret ballot at the annual meeting of the members, or at any meeting held in lieu thereof as hereinbefore provided, by and from the members to serve for a term of three (3) years or until their successors shall have been elected and shall have qualified, subject to the provisions of this Code of Regulations with respect to the removal of Board members. Board members may be elected by a plurality vote of the members voting thereon pursuant to such rules and procedures as established by the Board of Trustees. No more than one Board member from the same geographical area, as provided in Section 4, shall serve at the same time, unless said Board members were serving as such on April 25, 1987. SECTION 3. Qualifications. No person shall be eligible to become or remain a member of the Board who: (a) is not a member and bona fide resident in the particular district and geographical area of the Cooperative which such person is to represent; or (b) is in any way employed by or financially interested in a competing enterprise or a business selling electric power and/or energy, or supplies to the Cooperative, or who otherwise is engaged in an activity posing a conflict of interest with the governance of the Cooperative; (c) is a current employee of the Cooperative, or is a former employee of the Cooperative with less than five (5) years separation from the Cooperative; or (d) is a close relative of a current employee; has a close relative serving on the


Board or as an employee of the Cooperative. As used in this Section, “close relative” means spouse, parent, child, or sibling by reason of blood, marriage or adoption, and a spouse of a parent, child or sibling or any other person residing at the same premises as the Board member; or (e) has served seven (7) full consecutive terms, the first of which commenced subsequent to April 25, 1987 until three (3) years has expired from the end of the person’s last term; (f) has been found guilty of any felony criminal offense and the offense has not been sealed. Upon establishment of the fact that a trustee is holding the office in violation of any of the foregoing provisions, the Board shall remove such trustee from office. Nothing contained in this Section shall affect in any manner whatsoever the validity of any action taken by the Board. SECTION 4. Nominations. The Board of Trustees of each of the Miami Rural Electric Cooperative, Shelby Rural Electric Cooperative and Champaign Rural Electric Cooperative shall constitute a committee of nominations for each respective district. At least thirty (30) days before the annual meeting of the members of the Cooperative, each committee shall nominate from the membership of this corporation residing in their respective districts, as hereinbefore set forth, two (2) candidates for the office of trustee from their respective districts. No candidate shall be nominated who shall reside in one of the geographical areas provided for in the second paragraph of this Section 4 in which resides a Board member whose term is not expiring, unless said candidate was serving as a Board member on and continuously since April 25, 1987, and has not moved from the geographical area in which he or she resided at the time of his or her election. The Board of Trustees of each district shall consist of twelve (12) members residing within said district who shall serve a term of three (3) years. Four Board members from each district shall be elected each year. The Board of Trustees of the Cooperative shall divide each district in four (4) geographical areas. Each committee shall, at least thirty (30) days before the annual meeting of the members of the Cooperative, nominate from the membership of the Cooperative residing in such respective areas two (2) candidates for the office of district trustee. Thereafter, at the annual meeting of members of the Cooperative the members residing within each district shall elect one of said candidates as district trustee by secret ballot. Trustees may be elected by plurality vote of the members. Except for district trustees serving as such on and continuously since April 25, 1987 who have not moved from the geographical area in which they resided at the time of their election, No more than three district trustees shall reside within the same geographical area. No person shall be eligible to become or remain a district trustee who (a)


is not a member and bona fide resident in the particular geographical area which he or she is to represent, (b) is a current employee, or is a former employee with less than five (5) years separation from the Cooperative, (c) is a close relative of a current employee, or (d) who has served seven (7) full consecutive terms the first of which commenced subsequent to April 25, 1987 until three (3) years has expired from the end of the person’s last term. As used in the Section, “close relative” means a spouse, parent, child, sibling and a spouse of a parent, child or sibling. SECTION 5. Removal of Trustee. Any member may bring specific charges of malfeasance, misfeasance, or nonfeasance in office against a Trustee and, by filing with the Secretary in writing a detailed description of each charge and the evidentiary basis therefore together with a petition signed by at least ten per centum of the members, may request the removal of such Trustee by reason thereof. If more than one trustee is sought to be removed, individual charges against each such trustee and the evidentiary basis for each such charge shall be specified. For purposes of this Article “malfeasance, misfeasance or nonfeasance” means an act or omission amounting to gross negligence, fraud, or criminal conduct, which has a material adverse effect on the business and affairs of the Cooperative. At the next regular or special meeting of the members occurring not less than forty-five days after the filing of such charges, the member bringing the charges against the trustees shall have an opportunity to be heard in person or by counsel and to present evidence in support of the charges; and the trustee shall have the opportunity to be heard in person or by counsel and to present evidence in response to the charges. No trustee shall be removed from office unless the specific charges against such trustee are supported by clear and convincing evidence. The question of the removal of such trustee shall be considered and voted upon at the meeting of members and any vacancy created by such removal may be filled, by the affirmative vote of a majority of the remaining trustees, for the unexpired portion of the term and until a successor shall have been elected and qualified. The removal of no more than two trustees may be considered or voted upon at any meeting of members. Any member may bring charges for cause against a trustee and, by filing with the Secretary such charges in writing together with a petition signed by at least ten percent (10%) of the members, may request the removal of such trustee by reason thereof. Such trustee shall be informed in writing of the charges at least thirty (30) days prior to the meeting of the members at which the charges are to be considered and shall have an opportunity at the meeting to be heard in person or by counsel and to present evidence in respect of the charges; and the person or persons bringing the charges

against him shall have the same opportunity. The question of the removal of such trustee shall be considered and voted upon at the meeting of the members and any vacancy created by such removal may be filled as provided by the Code of Regulations. Removal would occur upon a majority vote of the members attending the removal meeting. In the event that a member of the Board of Trustees can no longer adequately perform his duties as a trustee with reasonable accommodations because of physical and/or mental limitations, a member of the Board of Trustees may seek the removal of said Trustee. In such case, a Trustee’s meeting shall be called and notice of the agenda shall be provided to all trustees advising them that the meeting will discuss the removal of a trustee for physical or mental limitations. At this initial meeting, the Board may call for a hearing on the issue of the trustee’s removal upon a vote for a “removal hearing” by two-thirds of the members of the Board of Trustees in attendance. If two-thirds of the members in attendance vote for a “removal hearing” of a trustee, such trustee shall be informed in writing of the charges against him or her at least thirty (30) days prior to the “removal hearing” at which the charges are to be considered and shall have an opportunity at the hearing to be heard in person or by counsel and to present evidence in respect of the charges; and the person or persons bringing the charges against him shall have the same opportunity. The question of the removal of such trustee shall be considered and removal will only occur upon a three-fourths vote for removal by the Board of Trustees. If a vacancy is created, the Board of Trustees shall fill said vacancy in accordance with the corporate code of regulations. SECTION 6. Vacancies. A vacancy occurring in the Board shall be filled by the affirmative vote of a majority of the remaining Board members for the unexpired portion of the term and until a successor shall have been elected and shall have qualified. The Board of Trustees shall have the power to fill any vacancy occurring on the Board of Trustees by appointing a person to fill the position for the remainder of that term. A vacancy shall be deemed to automatically occur when a Trustee dies, resigns, or is otherwise disqualified or when a Trustee has three consecutive unexcused absences from Board of Trustees’ meetings in one year. Absences may be excused by the Chair if extenuating circumstances exist (which determination shall be in the sole discretion of the Chair). SECTION 7. Compensation. Members of the Board shall not receive any salary for their services as such, however, the

Board may by resolution provide a reasonable compensation to be paid to each Board member for his or her services rendered on behalf of the Cooperative as a Board member, such as attendance at meetings, conferences and training programs or performing committee assignments. The Board may also authorize reimbursement of Board members for expenses actually and necessarily incurred in carrying out such Cooperative business or grant a reasonable per diem allowance in lieu of detailed accounting for such expense. A Board member may also receive compensation for services rendered as an officer of the Cooperative, but no Board member shall receive compensation for serving the Cooperative in any other capacity, except in emergency. No close relative of a Board member shall receive compensation for serving the Cooperative, except in emergency, unless such compensation shall be specifically authorized by a vote of the members. As used in the Section, “close relative” means a spouse, parent, child, sibling and a spouse of a parent, child or sibling. ARTICLE V | MEETINGS OF BOARD OF TRUSTEES SECTION 1. Regular Meetings. A regular meeting of Board shall be held at such place and time designated by the board either in person, or by video teleconference, or by other electronic means, A regular meeting of the Board shall be held without notice, immediately after, and at the same place as, the annual meeting of the members. A regular meeting of the Board shall also be held monthly at such time and place, either within or without outside the State of Ohio, as designated by the Board. Said meetings may be in person, or by video teleconference, or by other electronic means. Such regular monthly meeting may shall be held without notice other than such resolution fixing the time and place thereof; said meeting shall be presumed to be in person unless the Chair or a majority of the Board designates otherwise. SECTION 2. Special Meeting. Special meetings of the Board may be called by the Chair or by any three Board members, and it shall thereupon be the duty of the Secretary to cause notice of such meeting to be given as hereinafter provided. The Chair or Board members calling the meeting shall fix the time and place, either within or without the State of Ohio, for the holding of the meeting. Said meetings may be in person, or by video teleconference, or by other electronic means as determined by the Chair or other Board members calling the meeting. SECTION 3. Notice of Special Board Meetings. Written notice of the time, place and purpose of any special meeting of the Board shall be delivered to each Board member either personally or by mail, by or at the direction of the Secretary, or upon a default in duty by the Secretary, by the Chair or the Board member calling the meeting. If mailed, such JANUARY 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING   20G

notice shall be deemed to be delivered when deposited in the United States mail addressed to the Board member at his or her address as it appears on the records of the Cooperative, with postage thereon prepaid, at least five days before the date set for the meeting. SECTION 4. Quorum. A majority of the Board shall constitute a quorum, provided, that if less than such majority of the Board is present at said meeting, a majority of the Board present may adjourn the meeting from time to time; and provided further, that the Secretary shall notify any absent Board members of the time and place of such adjourned meeting. The act of a majority of the Board members present at a meeting at which a quorum is present shall be the act of the Board, except as otherwise provided in this Code of Regulations. SECTION 5. Action of Trustees without a Meeting. Any action which may be authorized or taken at a meeting of the Board may be authorized or taken without a meeting in a writing or writings signed by all of the members of the Board. ARTICLE VII | NON-PROFIT OPERATION SECTION 1. Interest or Dividends on Capital Prohibited. The Cooperative shall at all times be operated on a Cooperative non-profit basis for the mutual benefit of its patrons. No interest or dividends shall be paid or payable by the Cooperative on any capital furnished by its patrons. SECTION 2. Patronage Capital in Connection with Furnishing Electric Energy. In the furnishing of electric energy the Cooperative operations shall be so conducted that all patrons, members and non-members alike, will through their patronage furnish capital for the Cooperative. In order to induce patronage and to assure that the Cooperative will operate on a non-profit basis the Cooperative is obligated to account on a patronage basis to all its patrons, members and non-members alike, for all amounts received and receivable from the furnishing of electric energy in excess of operating costs and expenses properly chargeable against the furnishing of electric energy. All such amounts in excess of operating costs and expenses at the moment of receipt by the Cooperative are received with the understanding that they are furnished by the patrons, members and nonmembers alike, as capital. The Cooperative is obligated to pay by credits to a capital account for each patron all such amounts in excess of operating costs and expenses. The books and records of the capital, if any, so furnished by each patron is clearly reflected and credited in an appropriate record to the capital account of each patron, and the Cooperative shall within a reasonable time after the close of the fiscal year notify each patron of


the amount of capital so credited to his or her account. All such amounts credited to the capital account of any patron shall have the same status as though they had been paid to the patron in cash in pursuance of a legal obligation to do so and the patron had then furnished the Cooperative corresponding amounts for capital. All other amounts received by the Cooperative from its operations in excess of costs and expenses shall, insofar as permitted by law, be (a) used to offset any losses incurred during the current or any prior fiscal year and (b) to the extent not needed for that purpose, allocated to its patrons on a patronage basis and any amount so allocated shall be included as part of the capital credited to the accounts of patrons, as herein provided. In the event of dissolution or liquidation of the Cooperative, after all outstanding indebtedness of the Cooperative shall have been paid, outstanding capital credits shall be retired without priority on a pro rata basis before any payments are made on account of property rights of members. If, at any time prior to dissolution or liquidation, the Board shall determine that the financial condition of the Cooperative will not be impaired thereby, the capital credited to patrons’ accounts may be retired in full or in part. Any such retirements of capital shall be made pursuant to such rules and procedures as established by the Board of Trustees, provided, however, that nothing herein shall be construed as impairing or limiting the Cooperative’s right to set off capital credits against obligations due the Cooperative by a member. Capital credited to the account of each patron shall be assignable only on the books of the Cooperative pursuant to written instruction from the assignor and only to successors in interest, to the individual partners, shareholders or members of a dissolved partnership, corporation, or limited liability company, successors in occupancy in all or a part of such patron’s premises served by the Cooperative or to a trustee of a trust created by a patron wherein the patron has reserved the right to revoke or amend said trust unless the Board, acting under policies of general application, shall determine otherwise, except as herein otherwise provided. Notwithstanding any other provision of this Code of Regulations the Board at its discretion, shall have the power at any time upon the death of any patron, if the legal representatives of his or her estate or trustees of his or her trust shall request in writing that the capital credited to any such patron or trustees of a trust described in the preceding paragraph be retired prior to the time such capital would otherwise be retired under the provisions of this Code of Regulations, to retire capital credited to any such patron immediately upon such terms and conditions as

the Board, acting under policies of general application, and the legal representatives of such patron’s estate or trustees of a trust, as the case may be, shall agree upon; provided, however, that the financial condition of the Cooperative will not be impaired thereby. In the case of the death of patron holding a joint membership with other individuals only an equal share, based upon the number of individuals holding the joint membership, of the capital credited to such joint membership shall be payable to the patron’s estate. In the case of the death of patron holding a joint membership with rights of survivorship, the capital credited to such joint membership with rights of survivorship shall be assigned to the surviving owner. Assigned capital credits to the surviving owner shall be paid to the surviving owner in the same manner as if the surviving member owned the membership originally as a sole member. SECTION 3. Assignment and Gift by Failure to Claim. Notwithstanding any other provision of the Bylaws, if any patron or former patron fails to claim any cash retirement of capital credits or other payment from the Cooperative within four years after payment of the same has been made available by notice or check mailed to him or her at his or her last address furnished to the Cooperative, such failure shall be and constitutes an irrevocable assignment and gift by such patron of such capital credit or other payment of the Cooperative. Failure to claim any such payment within the meaning of this section shall include the failure by such patron or former patron to cash any check mailed to him or her by the Cooperative at the last address furnished by him or her to the Cooperative. The assignment and gift provided for under this Section shall become effective only upon the expiration of four (4) years from the date when such payment was made available to such patron or former patron without claim therefore and only after the further expiration of sixty (60) days following the giving of a notice by mail and publication that unless such payment is claimed within said sixty (60) day period, such gift to the Cooperative shall become effective. The notice by mail herein provided for shall be one mailed by the Cooperative to such patron or former patron at the last known address and the notice by publication shall be two (2) consecutive insertions in a newspaper circulated in the service area of the Cooperative, which may be the Statewide Newsletter. The sixty (60) day period following the giving of such notice shall be deemed to terminate sixty (60) days after the mailing of such notice or sixty (60) days following the last date of publication thereof, whichever is later.

ARTICLE XII | AMENDMENTS This Code of Regulations may be altered, amended or repealed by the members at any regular or special meeting, provided the notice of such meeting shall have contained a copy of the proposed alteration, amendment or repeal. Any alteration, amendment or repeal of this Article, or Article VIII shall require the affirmative vote of at least two-thirds of the members of the Cooperative, and no other provision of this Code of Regulations may be altered, amended or repealed by an affirmative vote which is less in number or different in character than the affirmative vote required for action under that provision. The following amendment repeals Article XII of the Code of Regulations and shall become a part of the Article of Incorporation as amended. Article XII of the Code of Regulations is hereby repealed in its entirety. The Articles of Incorporation are amended to include the following provision. The Code of Regulations may be altered, amended or repealed by the vote of a majority of the members voting thereon pursuant to such rules and procedures as established by the Board of Trustees in conjunction with a meeting called for said purposes which may be held in person, or by video teleconference, or by other electronic means; provided the notice of such meeting shall have contained a copy of the proposed alteration, amendment or repeal. The aforementioned Article shall be included in the Code of Regulations as Article XII. If you have any questions regarding the changes in the Code of Regulations or Articles of Incorporation, please contact Nanci McMaken at 800-762-0997.




Children of members are invited to participate in Pioneer’s “Reliability + Dependability” art contest. The contest is open to children K–8th grade. Categories: K–2, 3–5, 6–8 grades.

Each year, Pioneer recognizes outstanding seniors in the Pioneer Electric Cooperative service territory. This year, Pioneer will offer 10 scholarships to high school seniors whose parents are members of the cooperative.*

Submissions should include an item that you rely and depend on each day that uses electricity — this could be a scene, a drawing of the item, or any other creative rendering. The artwork can be created on any size paper.

*Rules and regulations can be found online at www.pioneerec.com.

Take a photo, or video, if needed, of your entry and send it to us at member@pioneerec.com. Include “art contest” in the subject line and include name, grade, parent’s name(s), Pioneer account number, city, and phone number in the body of the email. Entries will be judged on creativity and overall artistic ability according to your age category. Winners will be announced and published in our April issue of Ohio Cooperative Living magazine. All entries will be showcased on our social media sites. Winners of each category will receive a $25 Walmart gift card, with an overall winner receiving a $50 gift card. One entry per person; entrants must be the son or daughter of a Pioneer member.



Terrence A. Householder CONTACT


800-762-0997 www.pioneerec.com

Colleen R. Eidemiller First Vice Chair

Roger J. Bertke MAIN OFFICE

Second Vice Chair

344 West U.S. Route 36 Piqua, Ohio 45356

John I. Goettemoeller Secretary



767 Three Mile Road Urbana, Ohio 43078

Ted R. Black Duane L. Engel John H. Vulgamore Wade H. Wilhelm


8 a.m.–4:30 p.m.


Ron L. Bair Orville J. Bensman Ronald P. Clark Harold T. Covault Donald D. DeWeese Dwain E. Hollingsworth Douglas A. Hurst Edward P. Sanders Paul R. Workman Donald K. Zerkle Trustees Emeritus

Ronald P. Salyer President/CEO


Email your ideas to: member@pioneerec.com 22   OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING • JANUARY 2021

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Glacial gold Icy visitors from geologic eras past left Ohio with a tiny but valuable gift. BY CRAIG SPRINGER


ost folks familiar with Ohio’s geography know that glaciers covered two-thirds of the state, sparing only the southeastern portion from the cold crush of a Pleistocene winter. The time span and immensity are difficult to grasp: Milethick ice spread over the Buckeye State for millennia, gouging and shaping the earth as the ice advanced and retreated. Geologists say that 10,000 to 15,000 years ago, the ice melted and left us our current landscape. That includes the pleasant hummocks piled up where the ice stopped, from Reily in Butler County northeasterly to Salem in Mahoning County.


The glaciers also left a little prize that they picked up on the slow slog south: gold. Yes, there is gold in Ohio. You can find it in perhaps most any stream that flows over glaciated Ohio, but the vast majority of the fine flecks of the yellow metal occur where the glaciers advanced their farthest and fell apart — melted — dropping what they had carried along. Ohio Geological Survey geologist Thomas Nash specializes in glacial geology. Nash says that gold in Ohio is an erratic — that is, it’s not native, necessarily, but transported from elsewhere. There’s no mother lode here; for that El Dorado, you have to look way up north, to Canada.

“Any gold that is found in Ohio today was actually formed in Canada billions of years ago,” Nash says. Gold formed in the bowels of the earth in igneous rocks — those forged by heat. “It was only during the Quaternary Period, considered 2.6 million years ago to present, when gold deposits were transported to Ohio.” The weight of the massive, hulking ice sheets and the pull of gravity ripped up rocks in Canada, some of which were infused with gold. The gold found in Ohio is typically tiny, flat flakes with rounded edges. They are small and abraded, having broken apart from larger nuggets during the long,

The gold found in Ohio is typically tiny, flat flakes with rounded edges. Gold flakes as big as a pea have been reported, but those are exquisitely few and far between.

Opposite page: Look closely and you can see glittering specks among the sand. Above, the entrance to a mine near Bethel, Ohio, around 1920. Below, a gold sluice on the Robert Titus farm near Brushy Fork in Clermont County, 1933.

grinding trek. Gold flakes as big as a pea have been reported, but those are exquisitely few and far between. “Gold is a very malleable metal, and the forces and stress that pieces of gold experienced during glacial transport broke the gold down to smaller sizes,” Nash says. “Most gold in Ohio today is found when panning sand in streams and tends to be the same size as the sand grains. It appears as tiny flecks generally less than 2 millimeters.” Ohio gold has another trait, says Nash: its scarcity. “Gold is very rare in Ohio, and prospectors have found it difficult to strike it rich panning for gold. All of the commercial gold mining expeditions in Ohio’s past were financial failures.” Gold was discovered in Ohio in the early to mid-19th century, and newspaper accounts of commercial operations making a run at gold extraction corroborate with what geologists know of the patterns of ice flow. Nash says that two major episodes of glaciation occurred in Ohio, ending in nearly the same places: The most recent flow, called the Wisconsin Episode, almost entirely overlapped an earlier Illinois Episode. That band of exposed Illinois glacial till is where most of the gold has been found, and two places in particular made a fair amount of news through the years, in Clermont and Richland counties. A number of short-lived mines were concentrated close to Batavia in Clermont County and in Bellville in Richland County. These operations relied on the power of moving water to sluice gold from sand and gravel in streams with colorful names such as Stonelick and Brushy creeks, Elk Lick, and Cabin Run in Clermont County. The Elk Lick

operation, located on present-day East Fork State Park, spawned the Batavia Gold Mining Company, functional for a short time in 1868, before it was destroyed by a flood. James Lee, a 49er who returned to Ohio, found gold in Gold Run, also known as Deadmans Run, in 1853. The stream slices through the Illinois till as its waters eventually pour into the Mohican River. The area around Bellville saw intense interest in gold extraction well into the 20th century. While one can still pan for gold, keep in mind that goldbearing creeks purl through private property. Don’t trespass. As of this writing, gold sells for $1,876 per ounce. That’s enticing, but don’t expect a great return on hours of shoveling and stooping and swirling a pan. It’s all been done before — and remember Nash’s words: Gold is scarce. But all that is gold does not glitter, and not all those who wander are lost. Wandering along an Ohio creek bed and turning up stones may reveal other riches — getting to know more about where you live, our natural history, how the past informs the present, and yourself — and that is priceless.


Where the

things are Findlay’s Mazza Museum holds the largest collection of picture-book art in the world. BY VICTORIA ELLWOOD


hat are some lovable wild things, a colorful and very hungry caterpillar, and a big red dog — along with 16,000 of their friends — all doing in Findlay, Ohio? They’re part of the world’s largest collection of artwork from children’s picture books that’s tucked in a special vault — and showcased in gallery exhibitions — at the University of Findlay’s Mazza Museum. There, Dan Chudzinski meticulously cares for thousands of works of original art from much-loved books like Where the Wild Things Are; The Very Hungry Caterpillar; Clifford the Big Red Dog series; The Cat in the Hat; Arthur the Aardvark; and many, many more. “By day, I’m the curator here,” says Chudzinski, who also works as a professional artist. “I look after this amazing collection of children’s-


Marsha Gray Carrington, “Page 9,” from Coriander the Contrary Hen, 2006.

book art and give people a reason to care about the art and experience it firsthand.” The internationally known museum dates back to 1982, when the late Jerry Mallett, professor of education, proposed the idea. The collection started in the basement of the college’s library with a gift of four pieces of art from alumni August and Aleda Mazza. Today, their namesake museum encompasses 9,000 square feet of airy and welcoming space within the fine arts pavilion on campus. The immense collection holds nearly 17,000 pieces of children’s-book art — everything from early sketches and storyboards to the original artwork featured in the published books. It’s all safeguarded in the vault, where the temperature, light, humidity, and climate are carefully controlled.

The Laiho Gallery spotlights paper engineering, a method of creating picture books using different paper shapes, sizes, and dimensions.


On view in the Miles Gallery is original artwork and even some personal studio furniture of Hardie Gramatky — an early animator for Walt Disney Studios. He went on to become author and illustrator of 14 picture books, including the Little Toot series; inset: Lizzy Rockwell, “Page 13,” from 100 School Days, Harper Collins, 2001.

“I spend most of my time in the vault,” says Chudzinski, a Fremont native who originally set out to become a lawyer. A study-abroad trip to art-filled Rome changed his mind, though, and he found his calling to become an artist. He joined the Mazza Museum in 2015, and now oversees six galleries, where he curates exhibitions that change twice a year. One of the current exhibitions captivating visitors is the brainchild of Chudzinski, who’s also a sculptor. Titled “Show of Hands,” it features a selection of art from 31 illustrators along with a plaster cast of their hands, allowing visitors to see not only the art, but a replica of the hand that made it. “The idea started when I met Marc Brown, author of Arthur the Aardvark books,” he says. “I asked him if I could make a mold of his hand and he asked why. I told him a hundred years from now, someone might like to see what the hand that drew Arthur looked like. “So, I made a mold of his hand in alginate, and a plaster cast from that. We now make molds of the hands of every artist who comes through here. We have over 80 of them.” He says people have a powerful reaction to seeing the artists’ hands. “Our visitors are often already familiar with the creations of our illustrators, but it can be easy to forget that there is a human face and hand behind each work of art.” Just 3% of the museum’s holdings is on view at any given time, and the displays delight visitors from toddlers to senior citizens. Child-high shelves invite youngsters to leaf through “please touch” books printed with the same illustrations as the art displayed on the gallery walls above them. For


Benjamin Sapp, director of the Mazza Museum (above), and Dan Chudzinski, the museum’s curator, ensure everyone follows safety protocols when visiting the museum.

Watch a video about this unique museum at www.ohiocoopliving.com/mazza.

small adventurers, there’s even a tempting slide leading from an upstairs loft to the museum below.

been known to bring their horses to the parking lot for Sunday Funday events.

“This is a place for everyone who appreciates art and literature and has a love of picture books,” says Ben Sapp, director of the museum.

Sapp, who began working at the Mazza Museum 25 years ago as an undergraduate student, can’t pinpoint his favorite children’s book. But he can reflect on being at the helm of the museum.

In normal years, the museum hosts nearly 300 events. There are weekly Tales for Tots gatherings, school-age art workshops, professional development offerings for teachers, conferences, and visits from authors and artists. There are also collaborations with University of Findlay students — sometimes, equestrian majors have

“What makes this an incredible passion for me? I get to meet the people who create these works of art,” he says. “I meet the people who view the works on our walls, too, and see the impact it has on their lives. It’s really inspiring, and that’s what makes me happy to come in to work every day.”

The Dana Younger Gallery features “Show of Hands,” showcasing not only artwork from various illustrators but also plaster casts of their hands.


State officials can use your help to report feral swine during the pandemic. BY KEVIN WILLIAMS; PHOTOS BY W.H. "CHIP" GROSS


on Swihart cares for 120 hogs on a bucolic farm in rural Preble County. Hog farming is part of the landscape and cultural fabric here in towns like Eaton and West Alexandria. The annual Preble County Pork Festival brings 125,000 visitors to Eaton each year to appreciate (and eat) swine. Swihart, who also teaches science at nearby National Trail High School, has seen the hog farming landscape change over the past few decades. “Fifty years ago, everyone secured their farms with strong fences,” Swihart recalls, because family farmers knew that hogs needed to stay penned. Today, many of the pork producers are larger, corporateowned operations where the pigs are kept indoors and escape is impossible, so many of the fences have disappeared. Swihart’s farm has a 4-foot-high cement wall and double fencing. But, it turns out, the best fences are made from love and happiness. “My hogs don’t want to go anywhere — they are happy here,” Swihart says. He can count the times on one hand


over the decades that a hog has gotten loose, and each time it has come back. His hogs prefer life on the farm over a life on the lam. “They run around for an hour and then miss it here — they have food and friends — so after about an hour I’ll see them pacing on the other side, wanting back in,” Swihart says. State wildlife officials depend on farmers like Swihart to keep their hogs happy and secure, because an escaped pig is destructive. The USDA puts the price tag of crop destruction by feral swine north of $1.5 billion annually. While American black bear, bobcat, bald eagles, beaver, and other animals that were generally wiped out from Ohio in the 1800s are making a welcome comeback in the state, feral hogs are a large mammal that officials do not welcome. On a warm June day in 2016, a truck loaded with thousands of “feeder piglets” careened out of control on U.S. 35 outside Xenia, tipping over a guardrail and rolling down a wooded embankment. The metal truck ripped open like a tin can, and many pigs perished in the crash. But others were

Opposite and below: Wild boars captured during a hunt in southern Ohio.

luckier and escaped, melting into the nearby woods, their haunting squeals piercing the calm day. It can take only a matter of weeks before a piglet transforms from cute-as-Wilbur in Charlotte’s Web into a hairy, tusk-growing rototiller. State wildlife officials set up a perimeter in Greene County to corral the pigs, and that time they were fortunate, as no pigs escaped. State wildlife officer Jared Abele arrived in Vinton County 10 years ago and immediately noticed the pig problem. “My first few years, you could tell the population was rising,” Abele says. The telltale signs of feral hogs were visible throughout the county: flattened corn, rooted-up gardens and crops, and mud rubs on trees. Vinton County was the perfect hog storm, possessing many of the traits feral hogs thrive upon: comparatively few people and plenty of thick woods and rocky ridges crisscrossed by creeks and dotted with ponds. The hogs prefer to come out under cover of twilight or in the early dawn. They spend their summer afternoons soaking in muddy ponds and creek bottoms. Most people don’t see the hogs; they see the after-effects that resemble a small tornado, but Abele has seen them loose in Vinton County. “I came across a couple — they are very elusive. As soon as they saw me, they took off,” Abele recalls. He said the ones he’s seen in the wild in Ohio range anywhere from 100 to 250 pounds, but he has seen photos elsewhere of wild swine approaching 400 pounds. Abele says the ones in Ohio seek refuge in thick oak forests and hickory stands, where they forage on mast. “They are always close to some kind of dense underbrush,” he says.

has pretty much ground to a halt in the age of social distancing and mask wearing. “All outreach is virtual now; we are not able to make eye-to-eye contact with landowners, and that has made the outreach a super difficult process this year,” Genders says.  Officials are hopeful that the pigs aren’t regrouping under cover of COVID. There are parallels to COVID-19 and feral swine — both are elusive, and any pockets left uncontained can flare up fast. That’s why outreach is so important. Genders says that there have been reports of feral hogs in Guernsey and Noble counties. Adams, Scioto, and Gallia counties have also had a share of porcine visitors. Chances are a feral hog will see you before you see it, and it’ll slink off into the brush. But if you do find one, the best thing to do is walk away. While encounters with hogs are rare, they do happen. A feral hog attacked a woman in Upper Township in Lawrence County in 2011. It took two shots from the revolver of a responding sheriff’s deputy to subdue the animal. Meanwhile, back on Swihart’s Preble County farm, the focus is on keeping the hogs happy. “Their buddies are here. They may think the grass is greener on the other side, but they quickly realize it is not,” Swihart says.

In Ohio, the feral swine are a motley mix of lucky escapees from pig farms or, more commonly, Eurasian wild boar released on private property for game hunters. While other states have had difficulty tamping down on their wild pig populations, Ohio has thus far managed to get the upper hand. The hogs established a beachhead in Vinton County, and some remain in the southern part of the state, but they’ve largely been contained. “We have made progress in leaps and bounds,” says Tyler Genders, wildlife disease biologist and feral swine coordinator of the USDA APHIS Wildlife Services, which oversees the state’s hog containment program. COVID-19 has touched virtually every segment of work in the United States, and the same goes for Ohio’s feral hog containment. Wildlife officials perform outreach to educate folks about the dangers and collect reconnaissance on feral hog movements. That outreach

If you spot a feral hog in rural Ohio, wildlife officials would appreciate your report at 800-WILDLIFE or wildinfo@dnr.state.oh.us.



t the corner of Vine and West 8th in downtown Cincinnati, a giant mural covers the entire side of a six-story building. It depicts a colorful, swirling flock of birds: passenger pigeons, now extinct. The last passenger pigeon, Martha, died at the Cincinnati Zoo on Sept. 1, 1914. That 2014 mural, which commemorates the 100th anniversary of Martha’s death and the species’ sad passing, was the work of internationally known wildlife artist John Ruthven — one of Cincinnati’s most famous and beloved native sons. Ruthven died Oct. 11, 2020, at the age of 95.



audubon BY W.H. “CHIP” GROSS


John Ruthven and Tim Parsley’s Martha, The Last Passenger mural in Cincinnati (photo by Raymond Boyd/Getty Images).

If it has to do with birds in or around Cincinnati, Ruthven probably was part of it.

a decision that he and tens of thousands of wildlife-art enthusiasts never regretted.

Born in 1924, Ruthven knew he wanted to be a professional artist from an early age, preferably a wildlife artist. Like so many young men of that era, however, his dream was deferred by World War II; John enlisted in the U.S. Navy after he graduated from high school in 1943.

Ruthven had always idolized John James Audubon (1785– 1851) and his art. Audubon had even spent time in Cincinnati painting bird portraits. It’s not surprising, then, that Ruthven’s painting style eventually evolved to resemble that of Audubon’s — so much so, that John Ruthven would become known as the “20th-century Audubon.”

After the war, Ruthven returned to Cincinnati, married, began a family, and opened a commercial art business. One of his first jobs was to create the image of the young boy found on cans of Play-Doh, the children’s modeling clay. He also continued to draw and paint wildlife pictures in his spare time. It was in 1960 that he submitted an entry to the federal Duck Stamp contest. The picture depicted a pair of swimming redhead ducks, male and female, followed by their small brood of young ducklings. To Ruthven’s surprise and elation, his painting was chosen as the contest’s winner that year and appeared on the 1960–61 federal Duck Stamp. The win gained Ruthven instant fame as a wildlife artist and changed his art career forever. He made the decision to close his commercial art studio to pursue wildlife art exclusively, full time. It’s


Counting his many sketches, drawings, and completed paintings, Ruthven produced thousands of pictures during a career spanning some 60 years. It was a career that took him around the world in search of new and exotic wild species to paint. In 1972, Ducks Unlimited named Ruthven its first Artist of the Year, and prints from his paintings raised nearly $2 million for North American wetlands preservation. Ruthven also painted Ohio’s first annual Wetlands Habitat Stamp and a cardinal for Ohio’s most popular vehicle license plate, raising millions of dollars for the Ohio Division of Wildlife in the process. Today, Ruthven paintings hang in countless homes, businesses, and museums, including the Smithsonian. Ruthven received commissions to paint three pictures of the bald eagle for presentation to presidents of the

United States — Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, and George H.W. Bush — and the official unveilings all took place at the White House. A fourth president, George W. Bush, presented John Ruthven the 2004 National Medal of Arts. Late in life, Ruthven was asked if he would still paint were it not for the continued commissions he received. “Oh, yes,” was his quick response. “I’d paint for myself. I’d have to. One lifetime is not enough to do it all.”

John and me In 1996, I had the privilege and honor of collaborating with fellow Ohioan John Ruthven to produce the Ohio Wildlife Viewing Guide. Published by Falcon Press, it listed 80 of the Buckeye State’s best wildlife viewing sites, part of the national Watchable Wildlife Program. Ruthven created the original artwork for the 96-page booklet, while I provided the text. I’d never met John before, but quickly learned during the project that he was the consummate professional. Not only was his artwork scientifically accurate and detailed — six full-color plates of six wildlife species each — it was also beautiful. I found John, as most people did, to be extremely outgoing, friendly, and down to earth — quickly able to make you feel as if you were a friend he’d known all his life. — W.H. “Chip” Gross






n o i h s a f



1. My daughter wears this to work every day as a dental hygenist. Kim Adorni Washington Electric Cooperative member 2. Our daughter, Olivia Klier (age 9), at Holden Arboretum. Haley Klier Lorain-Medina Rural Electric Cooperative member 3. Mask fashion at the Williams County Fair — my son, John Dalrymple, matching his hog, Blitz. Kelly Hug North Western Electric Cooperative member 4. Coldwater Cavalier cheerleaders in their new fashion accessories. Nicci Zahn Midwest Electric member


5. Cousins Ally Schroeder and Aubren Schroeder model their new back-to-school fashion masks. The dolls won't be going to school, but they choose to stay healthy, too. Cliff and Janet Schroeder Paulding Putnam Electric Cooperative member 6. Bethany Collins with Carter Zachariah in their masks for school. Betty Collins Buckeye Rural Electric Cooperative member 7. Wearing masks while swinging on a nice fall day are our granddaughters: Grace, Caroline, and Leah. Carol Riegle Hancock-Wood Electric Cooperative member 8. Our nephew, Blake Williams, sporting a new mask he'll be wearing at school this year. Andrea DiLorenzo Washington Electric Cooperative member





Below: Our 2-year-old daughter loves to watch retro cartoons with her dad. Spider-Man is one of her faves! Dana Melvin Lorain-Medina Rural Electric Cooperative member

Send us your picture! For April, send “Travel abroad” by Jan. 15; for May, send "Little Leaguers" by Feb. 15. Upload your photos at www.ohiocoopliving.com/memberinteractive. Your photo may be featured in our magazine or on our website.





JAN. 10, FEB. 7 – Virtual Funday Sundays, University of Findlay Mazza Museum, online. Enjoy virtual activities from the familiar organizations and individuals you see during traditional Funday Sundays at the museum. Videos will be posted on the museum’s website and Facebook pages at 8 a.m. on the day of the event. Be sure to tune in until the end for a chance to win a Mazza prize pack! www. mazzamuseum.org.


FEB. 1 – Living History Trade Fair, Sandusky Co. Fgds., 901 Rawson Ave., Fremont, Sat. 9 a.m.–5 p.m., Sun. 9 a.m.–3 p.m. $5/day, $7/ weekend pass. 419-334-8180 or smilingfox@ smilingfoxforge.com. FEB. 3 – Faculty Artist Series: David Bixler, Moore Musical Arts Centre, Bryan Recital Hall, Bowling Green, 3 p.m. Free and open to the public. Will also be livestreamed. Bixby is a saxophonist and director of Jazz Studies. 419-3722181 or https://events.bgsu.edu/moore_musical_ arts_center. FEB. 6–7 – 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, members and under 18 free. Over 400 tables of modern and antique guns, edged weapons, and sportsmen equipment. 419-6470067 or www.tristategunshow.org, FEB. 11–14 – Greater Toledo Auto Show, Seagate Convention Ctr., 401 Jefferson Ave., Toledo, Thur. 3–9 p.m., Fri. 12–9 p.m., Sat. 10

JAN. 16 – Hocking Hills Winter Hike, 20160 St. Rte. 664 S., Logan, continuous starts 9–11 a.m. Free. See the beauty of Hocking Hills in the winter as you hike 6 miles from Old Man’s Cave to Ash Cave, with a stop at Cedar Falls for refreshments. Transportation provided back to parking area. 740-685-6841 or www. hockinghills.com. JAN. 20 – Cookie Decorating with Plenty O’Cookies, Franklin Park Conservatory virtual class, 7–8 p.m. $20–$25. Plenty O’Smiles, a self-taught baker and decorator extraordinaire based in Columbus, will guide you through THROUGH FEB. 28 – Russian Decorative the art of decorating creatively inspired sugar Arts from the Tsars to the USSR, Decorative cookies. Register online at www.fpconservatory. Arts Center of Ohio, 145 E. Main St., Lancaster, org/events/cookie-decorating. Wed.–Fri. 11 a.m.–4 p.m., Sat./Sun. 1–4 p.m. JAN. 28 – Victory Gardening, Franklin Park Free. From the decadence of the tsars to the Conservatory virtual class, 6–7:30 p.m. $20– destitute communist-rule years, Russian history is filled with contradictions. During the Bolshevik $25. Class conducted on Zoom. For plant and history lovers alike! Learn the history of victory Revolution (1917–45), a significant amount of gardens and the strict government guidelines Russian-made art was destroyed, lost, or taken and recommendations provided for growing from the country. For the first time, curator Michael Reese will display his incredible private them. You will learn how to create and manage collection. www.destinationdowntownlancaster. your own victory garden. Register at www. fpconservatory.org/events/victory-gardening. com/calendar. JAN. 31 – Columbus Premier Bridal Expo, JAN. 12 – Inventors Network Meeting, Rev1 Hilton Polaris, 8700 Lyra Dr., Columbus, 11 Ventures for Columbus, 1275 Kinnear Rd., a.m.–4 p.m. Free tickets available online, or Columbus, 7 p.m. The focus this month is “How $10 at door. Fabulous fashion show, demos, to Commercialize/Monetize My Invention.” 614cake and food samples, and much more. https:// 470-0144 or www.inventorscolumbus.com. columbusbridalexpo.com.



JAN. 29–30 – West Virginia Winter Music Festival, Lewisburg, WV. $20/night; $30/ weekend pass. More than 50 bands across seven venues. www.wvmusicfestival.org.


a.m.–9 p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.–5 p.m. $8 at door/$6 online; Srs./Stds. $6; under 10 free. Displays of the latest and greatest models and automotive technologies from more than 20 different manufacturers. www.toledoautoshow.org. FEB. 13 – Lima Symphony: “American Voices: Celebrating Black History Month,” Veterans Memorial Civic and Convention Ctr., 7 Town Square, Lima, 7:30 p.m. Samuel Barber’s Adagio for Strings; Barber’s Knoxville: Summer of 1915 featuring soprano Katherine Jolly; the songs of Florence Price; and William Grant Still’s Symphony No. 1 “Afro American.” 419-224-1552 or www. limaciviccenter.com. FEB. 14 – Faculty Artist Series: Faculty Chamber Music, Moore Musical Arts Centre, Bryan Recital Hall, Bowling Green, 3 p.m. Free and open to the public. Will also be livestreamed. 419-372-2181 or https://events.bgsu.edu/moore_ musical_arts_center.

FEB. 2 – Kaunas Symphony of Lithuania, Secrest Auditorium, 334 Shinnick St, Zanesville, 7–9 p.m. $55. 740-588-0871, zanesvilleconcert@ gmail.com, www.zanesvilleconcertassociation. org, or on Facebook. FEB. 6 – Matryoshka Nested Doll Workshop, Wendel Center for Art Education, 145 E. Main St., Lancaster, ages 5–12: 11 a.m.–12:30 p.m., ages 13+: 1:30–2:30 p.m. $30. Learn about Russian craft and culture, as well as making your own one-of-a-kind set of matryoshka nesting dolls. Students are encouraged to create their own themes, or to be inspired by their favorite characters from pop culture. www. destinationdowntownlancaster.com/calendar. FEB. 12–14 – Columbus Fishing Expo, Ohio Expo Ctr., Bricker Bldg., 717 E. 17th Ave., Columbus, Fri. noon–8 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m.–7 p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.–5 p.m. $12, Srs. $10, under 18 free. Military/first responders with ID, $10. Sport fishing education and fun, with educational seminars, speakers, and activities to expand your knowledge of fishing. 614-361-5548 or www.columbusfishingexpo.com. FEB. 14 – Central Ohio Antique Bottle Club Show and Sale, Doubletree Inn, 175 Hutchinson Ave., Columbus, 9 a.m.–2 p.m., $3; early-bird admission 7–9 a.m., $20. 740-703-4913 or 614264-7846.

Submit listings AT LEAST 90 DAYS prior to the event to Ohio Cooperative Living, 6677 Busch Blvd., Columbus, OH 43229 or events@ohioec.org. Ohio Cooperative Living will not publish listings that don’t include a complete address or a number/ website for more information.

PLEASE NOTE: Because of the developing coronavirus situation, many of these planned events may have been postponed or canceled. Please seek updated information before traveling.


imagery and ideas in their creation of a new nation. Registration required. 740-373-3750 or www.campusmartiusmuseum.org. FEB. 12 – The Marshall Tucker Band, Peoples Bank Theatre, 222 Putnam St., Marietta, 8 p.m. Starting at $42. The Southern rock band from Spartanburg, S.C., that became an institution is still going strong, entertaining old fans and new with their unique blend of blues, country, and jazz. www.peoplesbanktheatre.com. FEB. 13 – Contemporary Gun Makers and Allied Artists, Campus Martius Museum, 601 JAN. 16 –An Insider’s Tour, Campus Martius Second St., Marietta, 9:30 a.m.– 4 p.m. Museum Museum, 601 Second St., Marietta, 1:30–3:30 p.m. admission. Features the work of several dozen Museum admission plus $10. Take a deeper look traditional gunmakers from around the Ohio Valley at the early settlers who are the focus of David as well as several other craftsmen who work in McCullough’s latest book, The Pioneers. Learn the manner of the 18th and 19th centuries. Also about their lives, their possessions, and the home featured: horn makers, hunting bag makers, of General Rufus Putnam. Stories narrated by leather workers, tinsmithers, cabinet makers, William Reynolds, the museum’s historian and a and other allied trades. 740-373-3750 or www. research contributor to McCullough while writing campusmartiusmuseum.org. his book. Registration required. 740-373-3750 or FEB. 14 – Lorrie Morgan, Peoples Bank Theatre, www.campusmartiusmuseum.org. 222 Putnam St., Marietta, 7 p.m. Starting at $37. FEB. 5 – “Rome on the Muskingum: How A child of the Grand Ole Opry, Lorrie staked her Rome Helped Build the United States,” Campus claim as being one of the youngest entertainers to Martius Museum, 601 Second St., Marietta, noon–1 make their debut at the Mother Church of Country, p.m. Free. This presentation discusses how the and the youngest to become a member. She has early settlers of Marietta looked to the Romans become a renaissance woman of the country as they built their new city, and how the founding music genre recognized as royalty by her fans and fathers of the United States called on Roman her peers. www.peoplesbanktheatre.com.

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create your own memories than an overnight trip to Ohio Amish Country. Bring your family, bring your friends, bring your sweetshopping, stock up for holiday meals or enjoy an old fashioned backroad adventure.

www.visitamishcountry.com 330-674-3975 JANUARY 2021 • OHIO COOPERATIVE LIVING  39



PLEASE NOTE: Because of the developing coronavirus situation, many of these planned events may have been postponed or canceled. Please seek updated information before traveling.

Troy-Hayner Cultural Center. Available for viewing at www.troyhayner.org. THROUGH FEB. 24 – Bluegrass Wednesdays, Vinoklet Winery, 11069 Colerain Ave., Cincinnati, every Wednesday, 6:30–8:30 p.m. Enjoy dinner, wine, and an evening of lively bluegrass music by Vernon McIntyre’s Appalachian Grass. Because of COVID precautions, reservations are strongly recommended and should be made early. 513-3859309 or vinokletwinery@fuse.net. JAN. 15–17, 20–24 – The Ford Cincinnati Travel, Sports, and Boat Show, Duke Energy Convention Ctr., 525 Elm St., Cincinnati. Check website for hours and updated schedule of events. Boats, THROUGH JAN. 31 – Virtual Holiday Concert, with campers, ATVs, and motorcycles to adventure sports vocalist Rachael Boezi and David Wion on piano; equipment. www.cincinnatiboatshow.com. online concert recorded on Dec. 12, 2020, at JAN. 22–24, 29–31 – Greater Cincinnati Remodeling Expo, Sharonville Convention Ctr.,

11355 Chester Rd., Sharonville, Fri. 12–8 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m.–8 p.m., Sun. 10:30 a.m.–5 p.m. $5 (discount available online), under 18 free. The expo brings together the most knowledgeable remodeling and building experts in the community under one roof. See innovative displays showcasing the latest trends in design and product offerings, and get advice to help you with your home improvement projects. www.homeshowcenter.com/overview/Cincinnati. JAN. 30–31 – Lebanon Antique Show and Sale, Warren Co. Fgds., 665 N. Broadway, Lebanon. $6 online, $8 at door; one ticket good for both days! Includes free admission to the Harmon Museum. Large collection of 18th-, 19th-, and early 20thcentury American and Continental furnishings and decorative arts, as well as textiles, jewelry, primitives, folk art, and fine art. 513-932-1817 or www.harmonmuseumohio.org.


FEB. 6 – Mid-Winter Stamp and Coin Show, Ashland Co. Fgds., Mozelle Hall, 2042 Claremont Ave., Ashland, 10 a.m.–3 p.m. Free. Stamp dealers and coin dealers. For more information, contact Tom Zuercher at 419-496-1317. FEB. 6 – Wayne County Farm Toy Show, Smithville High School, 200 Smithie Dr., Smithville, 9 a.m.–3 p.m. Annual FFA alumni show featuring dealers selling farm toys, trucking/farm collectibles, and more. 330-669-9455. FEB. 7 – Medina Model Train and Toy Show, 735 Lafayette Rd. (St. Rte. 42), Medina, 9 a.m.–3 p.m. $6. 330-948-4400 or www.conraddowdell. com. FEB. 13 – Bow Wow Ball, Pines Golf Club and Restaurant, 1319 Millborne Rd., Orrville, 5:30–10 p.m. The largest fundraiser of the year in support of the Wayne County Dog Shelter. Includes a delicious meal, music, dancing, live and silent auctions, a wine grab, and a program. www. waynedogshelter.org/event/bow-wow-ball. FEB. 13 – Cleveland Ballet: Dance Me to the End of Love, Playhouse Square, 1519 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, 8 p.m. $25–$79. A romantic dance performance exploring the four types of love relationships — Transitory, Compromise, Karmic, and Soulmate — brought to life through diverse choreographic creations and paired with an array of musical genres, from Tchaikovsky to Sinatra to Leonard Cohen. 216-241-6000 or www. playhousesquare.org.


the “Boating Experience” Pavilion, try scuba diving, view the 5,000-gallon aquarium, and much more. Don’t miss the Lake Erie Market and Twiggy the Water-Skiing Squirrel! www. clevelandboatshow.com. JAN. 17 – Flea Market of Collectables, Medina County Fgds. Community Ctr., 735 Lafayette Rd. (St. Rte. 42), 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. JAN. 29–31 – That Golden Girls Show: A THROUGH MAR. 7 – “Colors!” Exhibit, McKinley Puppet Parody, Hanna Theatre, Playhouse Presidential Library and Museum, Keller Gallery, Square, 1519 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, Fri. 7:30 800 McKinley Monument Dr. NW, Canton, Tue.– p.m., Sat. 1:30 and 7:30 p.m., Sun. 1:30 p.m. Sat. 9 a.m.–12 p.m., 1–4 p.m. $8–$10. Features $39–$49. A brand-new show that parodies classic artifacts from the museum’s permanent collection Golden Girls moments — with puppets! 216-241that are grouped by color, ranging from vintage 6000 or www.playhousesquare.org. dresses and hats to glassware and china. FEB. 3 – The Price Is Right Live, KeyBank 330-455-7043 or https://mckinleymuseum.org/ State Theatre, Playhouse Square, 1519 Euclid exhibits/keller-gallery. Ave., Cleveland, 7:30 p.m. $41.50–$61.50. The JAN. 8–17 – Ohio RV and Boat Show, Ohio Expo hit interactive stage show that gives eligible Center, 717 E. 17th St., Columbus, Wed.–Fri. 12–8 individuals the chance to hear their names called p.m., Sat. 10 a.m.–8 p.m., Sun. 11 a.m.–5 p.m. $14, and “Come On Down!” to win. 216-241-6000 or C. (6–13) $3, under 6 free. Hundreds of campers www.playhousesquare.org. and boats, plus ATVs, motorcycles, golf cars, and FEB. 6 – Winter Hike, Norma Johnson Center, much more. www.ohiorvandboatshow.com. 3976 St. Rte. 39, Dover, 9 a.m.–noon. Take JAN. 14–18 – Cleveland Boat Show, I-X Ctr., 1 a break from being inside and step into I-X Center Dr., Cleveland, Thur./Fri. 12–9 p.m., nature. Three marked trails, from low to high Sat. 10 a.m.–9 p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.–6 p.m., Mon. level of difficulty. 330-339-7976 or https:// 10 a.m.–5 p.m. $14, Srs. $12, under 13 free. Visit normajohnsoncenter.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.


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