BELLAIRE'S HISTORIC Park is getting a striking addition.
In less than two weeks, a new gazebo will be standing on the south side of the park, near the school administration building in between the War Monument and the Sullivan Monument.
The 16x32-foot structure was the dream of Chamber President Lou Ann Bennett.
"We have had a sizable donation towards it, plus another nice donation. I think we are going to have to open it up for additional donations because we are still a little short," Bennett noted. "The concrete will be poured early this week and the gazebo will be there at dawn on May 29.
"We also have someone who would like to pay for the landscaping around it. Also there will be electric in it. It will have seating all of the way around it and with where it is located I am sure that the residents of the Carnes Building will get a lot of use out of it," she continued. "It will serve as the stage for The All-American Days Festival and the whole festival will be moved to the other side of the park in order to do this. I envision many activities there, including weddings, picnics, musical performances and the list can go on and on."
The ribbon-cutting ceremony will take place June 6. Bennett said that if all goes as planned, all village officials will be there. A short council meeting will follow the ribbon cutting.
That will help usher in the annual All-American Days Festival which will run from June 6-8.
"I am so excited about the gazebo. Somehow we will get the money to pay for it even if I have to front the money myself if there is not enough," Bennett said. "This gazebo is going to happen. It will be gorgeous. Everyone I've talked to is excited about it."
Bennett noted it will also be handicapped accessible.
I have seen sketches of the gazebo. It is really impressive and will take an already scenic park to another level. Price tag $20,000!
COACH OF YEAR
BRETT McLEAN was a no-brainer as OVAC Coach of the Year. Winning 14 straight football games and playing for a state Division IV title in Ohio is a noteworthy achievement.
McLean is a well-grounded, blue-collar individual. Those traits played out well with his team this year. While the expectations were high heading into the season, his demeanor kept the Red Devils focused and team-oriented week-in and week-out. No small achievement in these prima donna prep days.
Current St. C. school board member Bill Zanders deserves kudos for the McLean-Red Devil coaching marriage. Zanders was the district superintendent at a time when St. C. needed a head grid coach late in the school year. Zanders had the guts to pull the trigger and hire the 23-year-old McLean. Zanders saw early on what the entire Ohio Valley now realizes, McLean can coach with the best of them.
STUDENTS IN NEED
IN KEEPING with a commitment to local missions, the Bellaire Presbyterian Church is gearing up the for its school supply mission to benefit 'Students in Need' at the Bellaire Elementary, Middle and High schools for the 2013-14 school year. The church is collecting school supplies and monetary donations during the months of June, July and August.
The Bellaire Presbyterian Church has designated 50 percent of the One Great Hour of Sharing offering and 40 percent of the Pentecost offering as seed money for this mission. If you have any questions or would like to obtain a copy of the supply lists please contact Leigh Ann LaRoche at 740-671-9488 or email leighalaroche @aol.com.
Please make checks payable to the Bellaire Presbyterian Church, P.O. Box 322, Bellaire, Ohio 43906. Donations are tax deductible. Any and all donations are greatly appreciated by the students and faculty of the Bellaire Local Schools.
SHAUNNA DUNDER Hershberger and her legion of aides must be commended for their awesome efforts with the 13th annual Ohio Valley Light the Night Walk last month. The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society-driven event raised nearly $53,000 for blood cancer research and local patient and family support programs. That is truly amazing.
BARB BALLINT deserves kudos for the third annual Mini Rally staged at the Martins Ferry High track Friday. Ballint is the event coordinator and as passionate as you get when it comes to raising money for cancer research. Friday's rally included a Survivors' Walk, a walk by the high school students, hot dog-eating contest, games and talks. It was an entertaining and profitable afternoon. In the three years Barb has conducted the rally, more than $12,000 has been raised for the fight against cancer. That is a remarkable amount in such a short time.
THE?BETHESDA Fire Department will hold its annual chicken BBQ on Memorial Day. Dinner includes chicken, green beans, baked potato and roll for $8. half chicken is $5. Dinners will be ready around 11 a.m. You may preorder by calling 740-484-4573. It a worthwhile meal supporting a worthwhile cause.
CONGRATULATIONS GO out to Bellaire Police Chief Mike Kovalyk for his achieving 34 years of duty with the Bellaire police force this past week. Talk about tough jobs. Chief Kovalyk has it, but he does a tremendous job despite being handcuffed by money and manpower issues.
IT WOULD be nice if State Sen. Lou Gentile's budget amendment would be adopted. It yields $361 million in local government funds spread throughout the state over the next two years. Our local communities and townships are starving for money which could be satisfied by Gentile's plan. To let governmental entities suffer while a $2 million state rainy day fund sits idle makes no sense.
I WOULD like to thank Georgi Riser for another great meal. Georgi and her cast of community-minded helpers put on a pancake breakfast at the recreation center Saturday. Proceeds are targeted for operations of the city pool. Georgi's heart and cooking talents are both huge. Her Mickey Mouse waffles were off-the-charts good.
THE NATIONAL Glass Museum in Bellaire is in need of docents. If interested, call Rosalie at 740-671-3971.
BELLAIRE"S ALL-American Days Festival will also feature Sidewalk Sales Days. Village business owners are welcome to set up a booth in front of the empty storefronts. Call the chamber office at 740-676-9723 for additional information.
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