Minutes of the Avon Historical Society, 6-6-07

President Jack Smith called the June 6, 2007, meeting of the Avon Historical Society to order at 7 p.m. About 30 members and guests were present.

Nancy McGhee moved and George Bliss seconded to approve the minutes of May 2, 2007. Motion carried.

Jack asked for a motion to approve a $60 contribution to the Avon Library in memory of both Richard Goddard and Dr. Del Fischer. Bob Gates moved. Ralph White seconded. With the approval of those who made the motion, the idea to include a stone bench to be placed under the Linden tree that Dr. Fischer planted on the west side of the Old Town Hall was placed before the group. Funding for the latter was not determined at that time.

Jack asked to be reminded to research the story on the tree planting. The motion carried.

A meeting of the landscape committee was announced for Tuesday, June 12 at 7 p. m. at Old Town Hall. Paving material will be decided.

Motion to adjourn was made by Ralph White and seconded by Bob Gates.

Jack introduced Carol Hartwig who distributed Avon Historical home plaques to invited guests.

Respectfully submitted, JoAnne Easterday

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Avon's 2007 Country Living and Antique Fall Festival

What: Flea Markets and Yard Sales throughout the City

When: 9 am - 5 pm Saturday, September 8, and 11 am - 5 pm Sunday, September 9.

Where: French Creek District.

From Cleveland: Go west on I-90. Exit at SR 83 -- Avon Commons -- or at Ohio 611 (Colorado Road/Stoney Ridge Road).

Go south to Detroit Road. The French Creek District extends from SR 611 to just east of SR 83 -- Vintage House Cafe. Other Avon businesses also participate in the 2007 Festival.

For information: Call 934-6119 (day) or 937-5204 (evening) or visit www.frenchcreekdistrict.org

NEWS ARTICLE from The Chronicle-Telegram, 9-3-07, by Alicia Castelli

``Visitors find unexpected at Avon street festival

AVON -- Get out your credit cards, strollers and comfortable walking shoes because the 29th annual Country Living and Antique Fall Festival in Avon is just around the corner.

The festival is Saturday and Sunday in the French Creek district of Avon in the shopping center at the junction of state routes 611 and 254. The hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

"We have about 60 vendors who will be setting up booths or tents and about 15 to 20 shops in the district who will be participating," said Lois Shinko, a member of the Avon French Creek Merchants' Association and co-owner of Countryside Antiques.

The festival was first held in 1978, and only five shops participated. Today, it has grown to 15 participating merchants with more than 200 vendors or business owners, Shinko said.

"There will be tents and booths, as well as shops in the district having sidewalk sales," Shinko said. "There will be a lot going on."

Many of the buildings in the area date to the 1830s, Shinko said, adding that she and her husband, Bob, purchased the store in the area in the 1970s and renovated it.

More and more people started buying the historical properties, many on the verge of being condemned, and joined the restoration parade, Soon, nearby homeowners were fixing up their houses, and now the entire district has benefited from the revitalization.

All of it will be on display for the festival.

"I love the way everyone decorates," Shinko said. "They'll decorate their stores and the sidewalks, there'll be sales and tent sales. In the past, we've had scarecrow decorating contests and things like that."

Shinko will be in period dress, her husband will be making popcorn, and they plan to decorate their store inside and out with scarecrows.

"People like to come out because it's fall," Shinko said. "They like the atmosphere, the sales, the music, the decorations. We love to decorate. We decorate the whole area with a fall theme."

Musician Joe Marriotta will be playing his accordion at Countryside Antiques from 1 to 3 p.m. both days.

Shinko said the boost in sales that weekend helps merchants. "This event really brings a lot of people into Avon," she said. "Depending on the business type, we definitely see a sales benefit from the festival. For example, the restaurants and gift shops will probably be busy."

Merchants' Association President Peggy Strang agrees the festival is a boon to business owners in more ways than one.

"You can pick up any paper today and find two to three references to Avon these days," Strang said. "Avon is a desirable community, and lots of professional people are moving out this way. We like this festival as a way to show off the city."

Strang also likes the Main Street movement that is spreading across the country in response to strip malls springing up near interstates.

"You go to the malls and shopping centers to get what you want," Strang said. "You come to us to get the unexpected."

Strang hopes people will not only wander the sidewalks, but come inside the shops as well. "We invite people to walk through the stores," she said. "We want them to start thinking about their gift lists."

This festival -- along Detroit Road from just east of state Route 83 to just west of state Route 611 -- is the city's kickoff to the holiday shopping season, Strang said.

In addition to the main road, it will include some side streets, too. Just follow the scarecrows, pumpkins and cornstalks to find antiques, crafts, décor, flowers and much more.

"Usually when we have this festival, people just make a day of it," Strang said.

Free parking is available behind the police station on Detroit Road.''

Contact Alicia Castelli at metro@chroniclet.com.

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Sara Hobbs, Associate Director, Heritage Partner Development, Cleveland Restoration Society, will present a program on "Maintenance and Energy Efficiency for Your Older Home" at the meeting of the Avon Historical Society at 7 pm on Wednesday, 9-5-07, at the Old Town Hall of 1871 (36995 Detroit Road), corner of Detroit and Stoney Ridge (SR 611).

Have you been thinking about maintenance and repair projects at your old house? Join the Cleveland Restoration Society on Wednesday, September 5th at 7 pm to learn tips on tackling your older home's maintenance and repair issues. Take a look at how to inspect your house from roof to basement and hear ways to improve the energy efficiency at your home while the staff dispels common efficiency myths.

The program is sponsored by the Avon Historical Society and the Lorain County Preservation Network. For more information, contact Sara Hobbs at (216) 426-3108 or visit www.clevelandrestoration.org

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Parking for meetings of the Avon Historical Society:

Next to Smitty's Barber Shop -- please disregard the "no parking" sign,

Across Detroit Rd. at Nemo's Restaurant (park close to Colorado),

Across Colorado Avenue (SR 611) behind Blue Chip,

On the east side of Buck's Hardware on Church Street,

Across Stoney Ridge at Lois Shinko's Country Store parking lot (just south of the Gazebo).

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