Minutes of the Avon Historical Society, 5-7-08

President Jack Smith called the meeting of the Avon Historical society to order at 7:06 p.m. There were 26 members and guests present.

The minutes of the April 2 meeting were approved as read with Jim Szippl making the motion and Nancy McGhee seconding.

Jack reported that there is $1993.33 in the checking account and $6,584.05 in the money market account.

There were no bills to present.

Nancy McGhee talked about a form to be filled out to secure a grant from Wal-Mart. Several other civic organizations had been beneficiaries of grants from the retailer. Nancy will give a form to Jack.

Landmark Preservation Commissioner Bob Gates said no action had been taken by the Commission.

Landscape Committee member Chuck Huene led the discussion regarding purchasing 3 large fiberglass planters, soil, plants, etc. not to exceed $400. He made the motion, Marilou Moorman seconded. Motion passed. The Landscape Committee, with signed on volunteers as needed, will water with hoses purchased and located on site. Motion passed.

Jim Szippl presented the slate of officers from the trustees, Bob Gates, Bill Furnas, and himself. President, Jack Smith; Vice President Ralph White; Secretary JoAnne Easterday; and Treasurer, Barb Wolfe were reelected. Jim made the motion, Jean Fischer, seconded.

Jack reported on the deaths of Avon Historical Society members Hugh Gough, Chuck Lacey and Rose Hogrefe. As tradition suggests, a check will be issued to the library in the amount of $25 each for the purchase of books in memory of the deceased. Jim Szipple suggested that a book by television personality and garden author P. Allen Smith be among the selections. Jim made the motion, Bev O'Connell seconded. Motion passed.

Ralph White said the professional photographer had taken the required photos of Avon Isle for the grant seeking historical registry. He is waiting for call from the photographer to say the collection is complete.

JoAnne Easterday spoke of the conversation she had with developer Greg Romas about the extension of time for the demolition of the Center Road Schoolhouse. He said Starbucks originally wanted to renovate the building to establish the coffee house. Then they changed their minds and wanted a clean slate.

JoAnne sent a letter to Howard Schultz, the called-back-out-of-retirement CEO, to ask for reconsideration of tearing the building down and going back to the original plan.

Short e-mail was returned saying the suggestion would be passed along to the divisional manager for consideration.

According to Jack, Dave Vasu may still be considering moving the building behind the new chocolate store on Detroit Road. Ralph will contact Dave about his intentions.

Susie Cory moved to adjourn the meeting. Dan McGhee seconded.

Stan Hawryluk introduced speaker Jean Fisher who spoke on the History of Avon Village School.

Respectfully submitted, JoAnne Easterday


Janet Bird of the Lorain County Historical Society will present "Eerie Victorians" at the meeting of the Avon Historical Society at 7 pm on Wednesday, 9-3-08, at the Old Town Hall of 1871. For more information, contact Jean Fischer at 934-6106 or Stan Hawryluk at 934-0224.


I. Reading of the minutes of the meeting of May 7, 2008.

II. Treasurer's Report

A. Any outstanding bills to present.

III. Old Business

A. Report from the Landmarks Preservation Commission, Bob Gates

B. Landscaping Committee, Chuck Huene

(Our thanks to Chuck and Cheryl for the beautiful window boxes)

C. Membership Report, Theresa Szippl

D. National Register Application for the Avon Isle, Scout Project, Photos for the new First Merit Bank, Ralph White

E. Jack Smith will speak to the Avon Women's Club on 9-8-08, Avon Story of 1974

F. __________________________________________

IV. New Business

A. At our meeting on Wednesday, October 1, 2008, Jim Smith and Janet Bird of the Lorain County Historical Society will present "Lorain County Leaders," Jean Fischer.

B. __________________________________________

V. Motion to Adjourn and Second

Jean Fischer will introduce Janet Bird speaking on "Eerie Victorians."


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).


2008 Aunt Teak & Uncle Junque Citywide Yard Sale

Saturday, June 21, 2008 9 am - 5 pm

Sunday, June 22, 2008 11 am - 5 pm

Shop the whole town! Maps showing a list of sales will be available from French Creek Merchants.

To register your sale location print off the form at


and mail it along with $5 to

P.O. Box 4, Avon, OH 44011

by June 13, 2008

For more information, call 440-937-5204


NEWS ARTICLE from The Chronicle-Telegram, 5-14-08, by Steve Fogarty

``Quantum Bots conquer LEGO contest

AVON -- You could almost say it's getting to be old hat for the Quantum Bots.

The team of four home-schooled Lorain County boys took its computerized LEGO Quantum 3000 ME robot to the University of Minnesota a week and a half ago, where they competed against nearly 70 teams from the U.S., Europe, Canada, Mexico, Iceland and South America in the High Tech Kids First LEGO League International Open.

Working with a coalition of three other teams of like-minded juvenile geniuses, the Quantum Bots scored a first place.

Unlike other competitions in which the team has done quite well, notching sixth- and second-place finishes at the 2006 and 2007 state championships before placing third at the 2008 state games, the Minnesota event posed new challenges that included a language barrier.

"A lot of teams spoke very good English, but one team we had didn't," said Michelle Johansen, one of the team's coaches and mother of team member Bobby Johansen, 14, of North Ridgeville.

No problem, a translator helped them communicate with the team from Colombia in South America.

"It just took a little longer to tell them anything," said Bobby, a quiet-spoken but assured eighth-grader whose LEGO and high-tech wizardry began as a second-grader competing at the annual LEGO Olympics at Lorain County Community College.

Bobby explained how it all went down while standing in front of the 4-foot by 8-foot table on which the Quantum Bots and the teams from Colombia, Iowa and Texas demonstrated their collective skills at brainstorming solutions for problems thrown at them at the world LEGO contest.

These ranged from reprogramming and redesigning each team's robot to accomplish missions including planting trees in the green section of the table and installing a wave turbine in the blue portion.

"The idea is to simulate the global market by getting teams from various countries that don't know each other to get together on short notice to work on international problems," said Michelle Johansen. "This is a fun way to expose kids to that."

Bobby's teammates are Greg Knechtges, 13, of Grafton, and Avon brothers Carl Sadowski, 15, and David Sadowski, 11. While the teams had plenty of time to develop general strategies and plans of attack, which included talking with scientists and researchers, they were given a scant two to three and half hours in which to work together to come up with answers for the last-minute challenges handed to them.

"We had to figure out who was more reliable at what and let that team do certain jobs," said Bobby.

Coolness under pressure was essential. Robots could only operate along prescribed paths, and teams had to guard against mid-course collisions. Ordinary tasks, such as putting solar panels on a LEGO house, had to be accomplished as well.

Creativity was important, too.

"We couldn't let the robot touch or roll over the (upright) side of the board," explained Bobby, who's thinking about a career in robotics and engineering.

This led to a quick decision to suspend the trees on a green LEGO plate that could be swung above the board.

When he's not conquering the world of high-tech LEGOs, Bobby plays baseball and basketball.

"You can't just be a computer geek," Michelle Johansen said.''

Contact Steve Fogarty at sfogarty@chroniclet.com.

More on the Quantum Bots


Avon's 2008 Country Living and Antique Fall Festival

What: Flea Markets and Yard Sales throughout the City

When: 9 am - 5 pm Saturday, September 6, and 11 am - 5 pm Sunday, September 7.

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 2008 Festival.

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

There will be about 60 vendors who will be setting up booths or tents and about 15 to 20 shops in the district who will be participating. 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.

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. 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.

Some events that will take place are during the festival are

  • caramel apple dipping at Catherine's Chocolates 36718 Detroit Road,

  • a clambake at the Vintage House Cafe 35800 Detroit Road, and

  • spinning demonstrations at French Creek Fiber Arts in Olde Avon Village.

    Free parking is available behind the Senior Center on Detroit Road.

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