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Preview: Anthony McCune, The Lives and Times...

Anthony McCune, The Lives and Times...



Reflections of a 90-year old man; a bit past mid-way in the journey. (currently in the 40's) Looking back on the events that have shaped a life. Exploring the life that could be. How did you get here and where are you going?? Seconds turn into months. Day



Last Build Date: Fri, 11 Dec 2009 01:00:45 +0000

 



Jet Set Closes Out Season With Two Wins

Tue, 08 Dec 2009 22:26:00 +0000

The final three weeks of the NFL season are utilized by fantasy football leagues to run a playoff schedule.The Jet Set, my team in the Sig Tau's league, wrapped up it's season last week, finishing 11th among 12 teams and not qualifying for the playoffs.As it turned out, the end of the season was a bright spot for The Jet Set. You could say, Christmas came early, as I won the last two games! Pretty good when you consider I wont four total through the thirteen-week schedule.I came out on the short side in a few close games this season. Neither of the last two were in doubt, though, as both were solid wins.In week 12, The Jet Set knocked off Steel Curtain, a team that's going to the playoffs, 137-112. It was the most satisfying win of the season.Finally, it was Da Underdogs, who took a114-67 beating and finished in last place.Having my internet connection drop during the draft turned out to be a burden I could never overcome. None of the picks made by the computer were what I had in mind; that, as they say, is how the ball bounces.It was fun playing fantasy football for the first time and I wouldn't hesitate to try it again.I'd like to thank my General Manager Kilroy_60, without his help I don't know if my record would have turned out as well as it did.[...]



Expanded Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad Schedule Received Enthusiastically By Canton

Sat, 14 Nov 2009 18:12:00 +0000

Expanded Schedule HasPassengers Climbing AboardThe Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad started rolling out of Canton twice a day, five days a week this summer and the expanded schedule has received an enthusiastic response.“It’s been wonderful,” said Kelly D. Steele, Director of Education and Marketing for the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad. “It’s far exceeded our expectations.”Expanding the schedule from one day a week to five was seen by the railroad as a gamble.“When you start something new like this you never know,” Steele said. “With the economy you don’t know if it’s something people will be able to afford.”To encourage ridership, a standard fare schedule was put in place and passengers were given greater flexibility.Adults now pay $15 and the cost for children is $10.“You can get on and off as often as you want, wherever you want,” Steele said. “You just have to be sure not to miss the last train home.”Departures from Canton are Wednesday through Sunday at 9 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. and a one way trip to Akron lasts about one hour and 15 minutes.Mark Rubin, who retired from teaching at Kent State University about two and half ago years ago, volunteers with the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad and serves as the conductor on the Canton/Akron line.“I was worried when I retired that I would be bored,” Rubin said. “I was looking for something that would keep me busy that I liked.”Rubin said passengers have responded enthusiastically.“Passengers seem to always enjoy themselves and enjoy their ride,” said Rubin. “They enjoy the whole experience.”Ridership, he said, has increased steadily.“As more and more people find out about it ridership is increasing. We’re seeing a steady increase,” he said. “The response from the passengers has been excellent.”On a recent Wednesday morning there were 56 people riding from Canton to Akron.Eva Foltz of Plain Township made the round trip between Canton and Akron with her daughter, Jillian, and two family members visiting from Bakersfield, California, niece Kaitlyn Kovac, 8, and nephew Cameron Kovac, 10.Riding the train provided a touch of nostalgia for Foltz.She said, “When they first started the service I thought it would be interesting to ride the train, that it would take you back to the old days.”She said it was relaxing and the price was right.“I look for inexpensive things to do with my niece and nephew,” Foltz said.A representative from the Stark Country Park District rides the train periodically to answer questions about plants and animals. That appealed to Foltz.She said, “I specifically rode the train today because they had the lady on from Stark Parks to answer questions.”Mary Hultman, a naturalist and wildlife interpreter with Stark Parks, rides the train about twice a month.“The Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad got a grant to develop programming…,” Hultman said.“The Cuyahoga Valley National Park has interpreters that know basically Cleveland and Akron, but they’re not as familiar with the Stark County section.”She said the challenge, associated with funding coming from the grant, is to develop formal education programs to attract riders.Attracting schools, Hultman said, is difficult because of budget constraints.She said, “If we want to attract schools we’d have to develop programs to meet state education standards.”Hultman rides the train to find out what people want.“The reason I’m on the train is I like to ask people, what would you like to know,” Hultman said. “I’m doing this about twice a month to get the feel for everything.”The excursion to Akron was the second time Cameron Kovac had been on a train.“I like to ride trains because they’re bumpy, but you see a lot of cool stuff,” Cameron said. “The scenery was beautiful and I got to spend time with my family.”Cameron found Northeast Ohio to be different from California.“I think that around here it’s more green than in California because of all the wildfires,” he said. “It looks more be[...]



Dock Dogs Come To Sippo Lake Park

Fri, 13 Nov 2009 12:53:00 +0000

Buckeye DockDogs Makes FirstAppearance In Stark CountyA dog, at the command of its master, races the length of a dock and dives off the edge to compete for distance.That’s the sport of dock dogs.Buckeye DockDogs, a club based in Grafton, held a practice session in Stark County yesterday, at Sippo Lake Park in Perry Township.Two things led to the club staging its first event in this area; access to dock space and an effort to introduce the sport to more people.“Finding dock space is a challenge,” said Jim Zelasko, of North Royalton, Buckeye DockDogs Vice President.Friends who are involved in the sport provide access, Zelasko said, and the club approaches parks to ask for permission to use their docks.Social interaction among members, according to Zelasko, is just as important as competition among the dogs.He said, “From where I stand, and my dog’s capabilities I find it to be a leisurely competition. I believe it’s an excellent socialization outlet for both the dog and the handler.”Steve Bacon, of North Canton, agreed.“I find the sport very enjoyable because it’s a family event,” Bacon said. “I can take my wife and my children and they enjoy it just as much as I do.”Bacon characterized dock dogs as, “a fun, family, organized event that anybody of any age could do.”Family involvement is an important element in attracting new members to Buckeye DockDogs.“We’re trying to make people aware there are things you can do as a family,” said Traci Butler from North Lawrence.The term family extends to include dogs when used by those involved in the sport.“Our summer vacations have become dock dogs events,” Zelasko said. “Our entire family, meaning the dogs, along with my wife and I, all go on vacation together while some people have to leave their dogs at home or in a kennel.”Providing an opportunity for their dogs to have fun is what attracts people.“I was trying to find something fun to do with water with Ranger,” Butler said of her Labrador retriever. “He was jumping off the dock at Portage Lakes.”Describing Ranger as, “a totally different dog when hits the dock the dock,” Butler said, “I love it that he loves it.”Ranger practices every weekend, Butler said, jumping off the dock for about 30 minutes.“As quick as you can throw it out there, he’s in the water,” she said.Wanting to participate in the sport guided Bacon in his choice of a dog.He said, “Being interested in the sport of dock dogs I noticed that the majority of dogs that were jumping were Labrador retrievers and I’ve always been fond of labs all my life.”Bacon’s dog, Zeus, took to the water immediately.“When I first took Zeus to the lake (at eight-and-a-half months old) he walked right in and started swimming right away,” Bacon said.“Then, when I saw that he loved water, I introduced him to the dock and he jumped off the first time. That’s when I knew I had a great dog.”Bacon said his dog loves the sport.“My dog goes absolutely crazy when he knows that we’re going to jumping or are near a lake. His enthusiasm is overwhelming,” Bacon said.Zelasko has two dogs involved in the sport, a chocolate Lab named Cammie and a yellow Lab named Hallie.“My dog, Cammie, was a little timid to dive off the dock. After a few tries she would plop in,” Zelasko said. “That’s the starting point for any dog, which is a sign you can work from here.”Cammie started diving as a one-year-old; Hallie at six months. According to the rules of DockDogs, the governing and sanctioning body of the sport, six months is the minimum age at which dogs should participate.While Hallie hasn’t learned to dive from Cammie, it may have made getting started easier.Zelasko said, “I don’t believe that Hallie learned anything directly from Cammie except watching her go into the water and thinking, hey that water’s fun, or something like that.”Having prior experience made it easier for Zelasko to train the second dog.He said, “I do believe that Hallie’s [...]



The Jet Set Wins!

Mon, 09 Nov 2009 16:51:00 +0000

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There's news on the fantasy football front...

For the first time since week three my team, The Jet Set, won a game in the Sig Tau's fantasy football league.

The only other positive result I had, through the first 8 games, was a tie one week.

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The Jet Set, at 1-6-1 had fallen to last place in the 12-team league, midway through the season, but a 140-78 shellacking of ACORN for GDI's bumped me up to the 11th spot.

It's certainly notable that 140 points is the highest number of points The Jet Set boarded this season to date. There were only a few teams in the league that scored more points this week.

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This could signal a turnaround for the second half of the season.

The running back position has been a glaring weak point for my team. Against ACORN for GDI's, though, my running back Chris Johnson (Tennessee Titans) scored the most points in the game, 30.

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My record currently sits at 2-6-1 and, as best I can recall, this is the first time I came into a game as the favorite. The projected score of this week's game, against Presidents, is 112-101. Needless to say, it will be interesting to see how things work out.

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Stan Bunting, Jackson Township, Ohio, 330-495-9525

Fri, 30 Oct 2009 19:40:00 +0000

(image) I was a reporter for The Observer-Reporter newspaper in Jackson Township, Ohio where I worked for Stan Bunting.

Stan Bunting closed the business with no warning and no notice on July 30th, 2008. He is under a court order to pay the wages he owes me.

More than a dozen people worked for Stan Bunting at The Observer-Reporter, in fact, and he has refused to pay everyone.

As of today, October 30th, 2009, I am owed $1,356.61, including costs he has been ordered by the court to pay.

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I ask for your support in spreading the word that Stan Bunting has refused to pay his former employees. Considering "six degrees of separation" perhaps someone who knows you may know someone who knows him. Stan Bunting needs to know that people are aware of his dirty little secret.



1-5-1 Jet Set Makes Moves

Wed, 28 Oct 2009 10:24:00 +0000

My fantasy football team, The Jet Set, got off to a slow start and lost the first two games of the season. After 2 weeks The Jet Set was ranked 10th among 12 teams in the Sig Tau's league.I cut three players including RB LenDale White, Tennessee Titans, who was a starter.Five weeks later only one of the players I picked up after week two remains, WR Steve Smith, New York Giants, who has turned out to be one of the top performing receivers in the league this season.Over the past five weeks I've gone 1-3-1 and The Jet Set now ranks 11th.I suspect The Jet Set ranks number on in fantasy league cheerleaders, but there's no official ranking. Thank you for your support ladies.Prior to a week seven loss I pulled off my first trade of the season, last night word came that it has gone through and the changes will be reflected in my week 8 roster.I traded away WR Larry Fitzgerald, Phoenix Cardinals, who was a starter, TE Todd Heap, Baltimore Ravens, and RB Correll Buckhalter, Dallas Cowboys. In return I picked up WR Mike Sims-Walker, Jacksonville Jaguars, and RB Chris Johnson, Tennessee Titans.The running back position has been a glaring weakness through seven weeks, no matter what moves I've made from the waiver wire hasn't had a meaningful impact. I'm looking for Johnson to help turn things around.Johnson comes in with 100 points this season making him the top scoring running back on the team. He joins Darren Sproles, San Diego Chargers, in the starting backfield. Sproles is another player I picked up off the waiver wire.With Fitzgerald and Buckhalter I traded players who've scored 154 points to get players who've scored 183 points in Johnson and Sims-Walker. I threw in Heap, who was on the bench, and his 60 points as an incentive to get the deal done.I've made a number of other moves over the past five weeks that I didn't feel were worthy of blog posts.Along the line I picked up K Steven Hauschka, Baltimore Ravens, who I've now dropped in favor of TE Tony Scheffler, Denver Broncos, who came via the waiver wire.My week 8 lineup looks like this...QB Philip Rivers, San Diego ChargersWR Steve Smith, New York GiantsWR Donald Driver, Green Bay PackersRB Darren Sproles, San Diego ChargersRB Chris Johnson, Tennessee TitansTE Tony Scheffler, Denver Broncos*W/R Mike Sims-Walker, Jacksonville JaguarsK Jay Feely, New York JetsDefense Arizona Cardinals*Regular starters TE Kellen Winslow, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Defense Pittsburgh Steelers our out this week due to a bye in the schedule.[...]



Pittsburgh, The City I Love, On Google Earth

Fri, 23 Oct 2009 12:55:00 +0000

It was about a year ago that I ran a post titled A Drive Through Pittsburgh, The City I Love which featured street views from Google Maps.This time I've moved on to Google Earth to provide a better view of The City of Bridges.Pittsburgh is the world record holder for bridges with piers and stands contained entirely within city limits, beating out Venice, Italy, the previous record holder, by 8 bridges.There are many more bridges in Pittsburgh that are not counted toward the world record as they lack piers. A 2006 study determined that Pittsburgh has 455 bridges.30 years ago I was a student at Point Park College (now known as Point Park University); that's the tall (21 story), wide building on the right side of the picture below. The bridge that runs across Wood Street connects Academic Hall and Lawrence Hall.There are two windows you can see on the right side of the building, just over the building in the foreground, and I lived in the second room from the right during that fall semester!It wasn't unusual to hear people joking about going across campus, and they were jokes because at that time Point Park College was made up of three buildings and two were connected so it looked like two.In reality, though, downtown Pittsburgh, aka The Golden Triangle, was our campus.While I was going to school I frequently attended concerts at the Civic Arena; which is known now, of course, as Mellon Arena, home of the Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins.I've had a long relationship with the Civic Arena, as a kid that was the venue where we attended big events, like the Ice Capades and the circus.Point Park College, as you can see, is located in the heart of the Golden Triangle and it was at the center of the action when what was known as Renaissance II took hold beginning in 1979.Four of the most prominent buildings in the Pittsburgh skyline went up and a subway system was added, beginning in 1979 and running into the mid-80s.One of those buildings is to the right of Point Park College; I was living in a room on that side of the building one semester and had a front row seat to witness its construction.While I was living downtown the Pittsburgh Steelers won two Super Bowls (played in January, 1979 and January, 1980) and the Pittsburgh Pirates won a World Series (in 1979).Three Rivers Stadium, where the Pirates and Steelers played, is long gone, replaced by Heinz Field, home of the six-time Super Bowl Champion Steelers, and PNC Park, commonly known as one of the most beautiful ballparks in major league baseball, home of the Pirates.Heinz Field and PNC Park are on the South Side, across the Allegheny River from downtown. Across the Monongahela River, which Point Park College faces, is a retail complex known as Station Square.Over the years Station Square has been through good time and bad times. While I was in school, it was a great place to be and I had a lot of fun going there with my friends.We would walk across the Smithfield Street Bridge to get to Station Square. A bit of trivia here for you, the Smithfield Street Bridge is the oldest steel bridge in the United States. It was built between 1881-1883.One of Pittsburgh's two inclines has a station at Station Square, the other is a short drive farther own the Monongahela River.I always recommend that first time visitors stay at the Pittsburgh Hilton. It's right across the street from Point State Park and close to all the downtown attractions.[...]



Look For MAPS And Christina On PBS

Wed, 21 Oct 2009 11:03:00 +0000

Late last month I received a call from a filmmaker. (Adam White, Hemlock Films)I learned that he had been shooting footage at MAPS Air Museum for what he hopes to be a television series that will run on PBS.How it could be that I'd been working as the museum's Public Relations person for two months and nobody mentioned this project to me, given it's high profile, I have no idea.That's the sort of thing that happens every now and then, though, symptomatic of the need to improve internal communication and an example of people not yet being accustomed to having what amounts to a formal Public Relations Department.It was a win, to be honest, that someone referred him to me to ask about coming to the museum to shoot promotional photographs that can use as part of his pitch.It wasn't the museum he wanted to shoot or any of the planes, exactly, it was his narrator, Christina Capadona, sitting in the one of the planes he wished to photograph.In this case it was good to have a Public Relations person on staff, I contact the owner of the airplane he wanted to use and was able to facilitate the shoot.It was unusual shooting a person who is being photographed by someone else, the only other time that's happened has been at events such as weddings.I did get some good shots Christina, you can see them in the MAPS Air Museum blog.My intention was to run this blog post shortly after the photo shoot, which was at the end of September, but I have yet to receive answers to the questions I emailed. I finally had to conclude that he's operating on his schedule, based on whatever his priorities are, and it's necessary for me to the same thing.I had to close with this shot simply because it seems to be impossible to shoot very many photographs of a person and not end up with one, or some, where they have their eyes closed.[...]



Stark County Shoppers Save Money Using www.IShopStark.com

Fri, 16 Oct 2009 16:10:00 +0000

Local Web Portal Succeeds, Expandsishopstark.com is a web portal launched in July to promote Stark County businesses, including the distribution of money saving coupons. The site has grown significantly over the past six months leading to the launch of a new site featuring businesses in Summit County.“It’s grown faster than I expected,” said Marc Albert, President of Papa Ads, LLC, who is responsible for the website. “I’m ecstatic with how the site’s performed.”The number of monthly hits on ishopstark.com grew from 12,000 in July to 48,000 in December.The number of business listings increased nearly three-fold. There were 50 merchants listed when the site was launched, that number is approaching 150 according to Albert.A new site design that went live November 1 that, Albert said, has contributed to increased success, along with a number of new features.“We added a ‘blow out deal of the day’ that highlights one customer offering an ‘extra special deal’,” Albert said. He pointed out that the “blow out deals” change every day and all the businesses listed on the site participate in these promotions.Daily deals on lunch and dinner have been popular, most restaurants offer coupons for both meals. Daily breakfast offerings have been added recently.Steve Paxos has used ishopstark.com to promote his Jackson Township restaurant Papa Gyros Greek Grill since the site went online.“I think it’s done very well for us so far.” Paxos said. “For the small businessman, I think this is a very affordable way to get out the name.”Recent enhancements have raised his expectations.“I think some of the new features will be unique,” he said. “My expectations for the future will be high.”To increase efficiency of navigation the number of business categories, in which a company can be listed, has increased to 71.There are currently as many as 25 business listed in an individual category, with the largest one being restaurants. Other notable categories include Health & Wellness, with eight businesses listed, Home Improvement with listings for six companies and Beauty/Hair/Spa with five listings.Build By Design Kitchen En-Counters is listed in the Home Improvement category.Bill Webster, Owner of Build By Design Kitchen En-Counters, said, “Everything is going great with the site.”Webster credits ishopstark.com, and The Observer-Reporter, with the successful year his company enjoyed in 2007.“The only advertising we have done over the past year has been with The Observer-Reporter and ishopstark.com,” said Webster. “It definitely has brought us new customers. We couldn’t have had the year we’ve had relying on only referrals and repeat customers.”For 42 years Build By Design Kitchen En-Counters has been operating in North Canton. 2007 was a record year.“While others are declining, and struggling, we doubled what we did the year before,” Webster said. “We couldn’t have had that kind of year with 50% of our business coming from referrals and repeat customers.” In previous years, Webster noted, 85% of the company’s business came from repeat business and referrals.Paxos pointed out that in addition to advertising on ishopstark.com he uses the site as a customer.“I use the website as a customer myself,” he said. “I go in and print coupons for businesses I patronize myself.”The primary challenge for Albert has been marketing the site.“Because we only allow locally-owned businesses to be listed on the site, we’ve had to keep the cost significantly low,” Albert said. “That has limited us from expanding our marketing efforts.”He pointed out that ishopstark.com has had 148,000 hits in the first six months.Chad Salle is the sales manager responsible for launching ishopsummit.com; the most common question he is asked is how much it costs to advertise on t[...]



Dining Out In Stark County: el campesino

Sun, 11 Oct 2009 14:05:00 +0000

el campesino Falls FlatRecently el campesino opened on Cleveland Avenue in Canton, not far from where I live.I remembered eating at el campesino years ago in Massillon, but didn't recall any details...other than there was nothing that drew me back.I've long been a fan of Mexican cuisine, though, so I thought I'd give it a try earlier today. If nothing else, it would make a good story here, I thought.As it turned out, the feeling I had going in - enthusiastic to write a story about the new location opening - contrasted dramatically with how I felt when I left - which was disappointed and disgusted.I can't recall having a more uninspired and un-fulfilling meal than I had at el campesino.There were only a few diners in the restaurant when I went in at about 4 o'clock. That would eliminate being overly busy in the kitchen as a reason for the overall failure of the meal and I don't have an issue with "authentic" food, only "authentic" food that's not done well.The meal started, as is typical in a Mexican restaurant, with chips and salsa. The chips were plentiful and, for me, the high point of the meal. The salsa on the other hand was nothing more than a bowl of cold, watery tomato sauce that lacked any sense of body or flavor.I chose sliced beef Fajitas from the espedialidades portion of the menu; the price was $9.25. I substituted rice for beans with cheese and sour cream for guacamole.It's not a good sign when you have to point out that the soda pop - in this case Mr. Pibb - was an enjoyable part of the meal. There's not much good to say, though, so if you enjoy chips and Mr. Pibb this may be a great place for you.As for the sliced beef fajitas...The sizzling platter looked reasonable, in terms of quantity, when it came out. Little did I know at first glance the majority of what was served was onions.The steak, what there was of it, was cooked well. The little bit of green bell peppers was also good, with a few tidbits of red thrown in for good measure. The tomatoes, on the other hand, were cooked to death and, to me, not worth eating.I liked the three flour tortillas; unfortunate that there wasn't both more and, most importantly, better food to go along with them.I got a platter of fixings for the fajitas; dominated by shredded iceberg lettuce, which there wasn't a whole lot of, along with a small serving of cheese and an equally modest portion of Pico de gallo. The sour cream, it appeared, must have been doled out with a tea spoon.Worst of all was the rice. Again, an extremely small portion. It was, sad to say, so bland that more wouldn't really have been much better. Other than, I suppose, to provide some level of substance to the meal.When it was all said and done, I walked out of el campasino as hungry as I was when I walked in.The best grade I can give el campesino, only because I'm feeling generous, is a D.(Article originally appeared inStark County News and Views... April 2, 2008)[...]



Grandma's Kitchen Harkens Back To An Era Gone By

Sun, 11 Oct 2009 02:02:00 +0000

Canal Fulton Business DoesThings The Old Fashioned WayIn an age where you can buy virtually any vegetable in a can, Grandma’s Kitchen harkens back to an era gone by.Judy Spada opened the business in Canal Fulton three years ago.“What caused me to start my own store was there was vacant retail space I couldn’t rent (for 18 month),” she said.The name of the business came from Spada’s children; she has four and nine grandchildren.“My children named it; I wanted something a little different,” said Spada. “They liked that and thought it would be a good name.”Judy Spada in the retail area of her storeSpada had been canning for many years before opening the business.“I canned the whole time I was raising my children and continued with pickles, peppers and beets as gifts,” she said. “My friends’ husbands started ordering the products and that’s when I thought there might be a market.”Grandma’s Kitchen has a commercial kitchen on site where Spada cans her products as she did at home.“We process as we processed 20 years ago,” she said. “There’s no fast way. We do everything by hand.”The product line offered at Grandma’s Kitchen includes peppers, three different types of pickles, beets and an item she calls pepper butter that comes in four different varieties.Pepper butter, she explained, is a byproduct of what doesn’t go in the jars when she cans peppers.“The ends and pieces that can’t go in a jar go in pepper butter,” she said.Next month Spada expects to add a tenth product, dill pickles.She said it is “very difficult” to add a new product.“Recipes have to go to Cornell University to be checked, to the FDA (the United States Food and Drug Administration) and the Ohio Department of Agriculture.The process to obtain business license is not an easy one, Spada said.She had to complete a two day course in Acidified Food Processing to qualify for the license.“From my first phone telephone call until I was fully licensed it took six months,” Spada said. “It was a hurry up and wait game.”Spada’s Grandma’s Kitchen product line has been well received, but she’s found building the business to be a challenge.“It’s been slow, but I see it growing steadily,” Spada said. “It’s a financial struggle. We’re still looking for our one big store.”In addition to her Canal Fulton storefront, at 127 S. Canal St., Spada sells her products at farm markets, at craft shows and through retail stores in a three-county area.West End Carryout in Massillon has been carrying Grandma’s Kitchen products for over a year and owner Mary Jo Sand is happy with the line.Sand was initially concerned about the price of the Grandma’s Kitchen products. A quart jar of peppers, for example, is $6.99.“My problem was I didn’t know how well the product would be received because it’s a little more expensive; you don’t know if people will go that high for a jar of peppers,” she said.The price turned out not to be a problem.“People tried them and they liked them and they keep coming back,” said Sand. “I don’t have any problem selling them; they sell themselves.”The success of Spada’s products has been a pleasant surprise for Sand.She said, “I wasn’t sure how well the market would be for a jar of red beets. Beets is not an item that everyone gets, but I have people come in who only want the red beets.”Beets are one of the best sellers at West End Carryout.Sand said, “I think the product that sells the most, the one that really surprised me, is the red beets.”Hal Hardie of Canal Fulton is not surprised that the Grandma’s Kitchen line has been well received.He operates the Canalboat Lounge, two doors from Spada’s store, is a regular customer himself and also sells the products.“She brought m[...]



Expert Offers Advice On Tree Pruning

Fri, 09 Oct 2009 11:57:00 +0000

Take Care When Pruning Trees,Certified Arborist AdvisesLate spring and early summer is a popular time for tree pruning, especially flowering trees.Certified Arborist Dick Drake advises people to tread carefully when considering doing any such work.“Late spring and early summer is a popular time for tree pruning,” Drake said.“Pruning flowering trees after bloom produces more blooms the following season. If you prune before bloom, you will have less blooms at budding.”Dick DrakeDrake, who has been in the tree business for over 30 years and is certified by the International Society of Arboriculture, is no fan of pruning.“I’m against pruning trees unless there’s a specific reason,” Drake said. “If it has a disease or it has dead or broken limbs, that makes it necessary.”Another reason to prune a tree, Drake said, is if it was planted in a bad location.“If a tree was placed in the wrong location, such as too close to a house or in the utility lines, that would make pruning necessary,” he said.The City of Canton has utilized Drake for over 20 years, on a sub-contractor basis, to handle tree work for its street and parks departments.Drake marks trees in the city of Canton that require attention;he deemed this one a serious hazard.Brenda Trusty, a street department employee, has called on Drake to do work at her home. The first time she called he turned down the job.“I had two trees in the front yard that I wanted cut down,” she said. “He absolutely refused. He said I will not cut down a healthy tree.”That impressed Trusty.“Frankly, people can make a whole lot more money taking a tree down,” she said.There are times, according to Drake, when having a tree pruned for aesthetic reasons is appropriate.“If there’s a scenic view you want to open up, you would clear a section of limbs away,” he said. “That’s called vista pruning.”Not every tree is a candidate for specialty pruning, Drake said.“A tree that’s no taller than you are is is not one for vista pruning,” he said. “It has to be of some substantial size.”As a certified arborist Drake is held to a higher standard than others in the industry.“There a benefit in hiring a certified arborist,” he said. “You know that person has the knowledge and expertise to prune and treat trees.”When pruning a tree, Drake said, a certified arborist is obligated to comply with the standards of the American National Standards Institute.“Pruning is a bad practice in the wrong hands,” Drake said. “If the person is not knowledgeable and qualified you just may as well cut the tree down.”The best way to find someone to prune trees, according to Drake, is by referrals and word of mouth.“There are a lot of tree trimming services in the phone book,” said Drake. “To select a company to suit your needs is like rolling the dice unless you know personally of a service that does good work.”Trusty said she would not hesitate to refer Drake; she characterized him as being conscientious.“Dick is the most experienced, knowledgeable that I would recommend to anyone,” she said. “I’ve seen his work and the way he explains things; he’s conscientious.”Drake said he approaches his job as though he were a doctor.“I consider each tree as a patient,” he said. “The person with the saw is a surgeon.”A tree that has been pruned properly, he said, is one where you do not notice any work has been done.“If a tree is pruned properly, once it’s done you wouldn’t know any work has been done because it will look natural,” said Drake.Drake developed a tool that allows him to reachupper branches for wound dressing“It’s important to wound dress the pruning cuts immediately after trimming. That seals the wound and protects the tree[...]



Vehicle Wrapping Delivers A Message That Can't Be Missed

Sun, 04 Oct 2009 11:45:00 +0000

New Technology Makes VehicleWrapping Affordable For Small BusinessesVehicle wrapping, that is covering a vehicle in vinyl to display a promotional message, was once limited to large companies, but no more.Technology has evolved to enable the service to be provided at a lower cost and vehicle wraps are now being utilized to promote small businesses.Two local companies offer vehicle wrapping, Sign Pro and Custom Signs and Graphics.Sign Pro is a family-owned business with a 36-year history in the Canton area.Co-owner Lynn McSheehy took on a full-time position with the company in the early 1990’s.It was, she said, “at the time when using computers became the way to make signs.”McSheehy said, “I’ve been learning all the new things that come out ever since then.”Sign Pro did its first vehicle wrap in house in 2006.“It had been around a long while before that, but we didn’t have any requests for it locally,” McSheehy said.According to McSheehy, the introduction of large format printers caused vehicle wrapping to become popular.She said, “Technology has made vehicle wrapping accessible to small companies who do not have massive advertising budgets.”Sign Pro has wrapped about a dozen vehicles including service vans and utility trailers. The average price to wrap a van, McSheehy said, is $3,000.“We don’t focus on promoting vehicle wraps,” McSheehy said. “We’re just starting to promote our business.”Compared with Sign Pro, Custom Signs and Graphics is a new comer to the sign industry in the Canton area. The business has been around for 11 years.Company President Rich Hailstone has worked in the sign business for 18 years and did vehicle wrapping installations for a company before adding it to his product mix.In about one year Custom Signs and Graphics has wrapped 28 vehiclesAt a price ranging from $1,500 to $4,000, Hailstone has wrapped full size cargo vans, sport utility vehicles, passenger cars and motorcycles.“I’ll wrap your lawnmower,” Heilstone said.Hailstone said he started offering vehicle wraps because he recognized a trend in the evolution of vehicle graphics.“I believed that the future of vehicle graphics was going that way,” he said. “It’s an opportunity for me to offer my customers vehicle graphics that you can’t help but look at.”Applying a vehicle wrap, in essence, makes a vehicle a moving billboard.“Every stop sign becomes a marketing opportunity,” Heilstone said. “Everybody notices it.”A wide variety of businesses have had wraps applied by Custom Signs and Graphics including auto parts stores, body shops, a spaghetti sauce manufacturer, maid services, landscaping companies and trucking companies.Chip Waikem had a vehicle wrapped by Heilstone.Waikem owns a Mighty Auto Parts franchise. The company is a wholesaler supplying independent repair shops in Northeast Ohio.“It’s like the evolution of a typewriter going to a PC,” Waikem said, comparing vehicle wraps to the previous generation of automotive graphics.“It’s as comparable to that as a billboard that’s stuck in the ground that stays in one place that the same people see every day; with a wrap it’s a mobile billboard that thousands more people see.”Waikem praised Heilstone’s work.“They did a great job on the design and the installation as compared to the conventional decal that just says your name,” Waikem said.“We had the basic company logo and we told Rich to use his own discretion and imagination. He did a real good job; we’re very, very satisfied.”Waikem is going to have more vehicles wrapped.“We put wraps on two vehicles about 6-8 months ago. Now we’re going to expand it to our entire fleet to include 10 more,” he said.Vehicle wrapping, Waikem sai[...]



Dining Out In Stark County: Braden's Bistro

Sun, 04 Oct 2009 03:39:00 +0000

Article originally appeared in Stark County News and Views...August 18, 2008About a month ago I was driving to Perry Township when I spotted a sign saying We're Back! at what had been a Pizza Plus restaurant on Whipple Avenue.I stopped to find a new restaurant called Braden's Bistro.As it turned out they had been on a short vacation, after opening the restaurant about three months before, and put the sign out to announce they were serving again.It was one of those days where I'd been busy working, lost track of time and hadn't eaten for way too long. I was hungry for meatballs.Braden's has a comfortable atmosphere for family dining with booths lining two walls and tables in between. I grabbed a booth in one corner and was greeted by a server who was clearly enthusiastic about the restaurant.Looking over the menu I saw spaghetti with meat sauce, but no mention of meatballs. Getting meatballs, she said, would be no problem.Braden's serves Pepsi products which would include Dr. Pepper and that's what I wanted to drink. Unfortunately, only Diet Dr. Pepper is offered, and I can't drink that, so I went with root beer.There was no disappointment when the food came.I got a huge platter of spaghetti topped with what I thought was a good serving of sauce and two meatballs. The meatballs were a good size...and they were delicious. The spaghetti dinner, with meat sauce or meatballs, includes garlic toast which is fantastic.The last time I went to Braden's, as you can see, I orderedfour meatballs and an extra serving of garlic bread off the bat.It wasn't long before I ordered two extra meatballs and another order of garlic toast. The server asked if I'd like some extra sauce with it; that was a good suggestion.The food was excellent; so good in fact that I ended up ordering three more meatballs and a second extra order of garlic toast.The garlic toast came out warm every time. It is, without question, some of the best garlic toast I've ever eaten.My final tab for the meal was only $10.68!!I don't know whether there was any price break on this meal, or any that followed, because I don't get the salad or soup that's offered with the meal.As has been my standard approach, I didn't write about eating at Braden's after one meal. I've been there two more times and am happy to report the food has been consistently outstanding.I can't comment on anything except the spaghetti and meatballs, though, because at this point that's all I've eaten.The second time I visited Braden's I had a different server; she was also enthusiastic about the restaurant and provided excellent service.I've had to write bad reviews of some restaurants so, out of fairness, I have to say the last time I was at Braden's I had bad service.It didn't matter to me that this server reflected no enthusiasm; in fact she didn't convey any personality whatsoever that stands out in my mind.I forgot, to be honest, that regular Dr. Pepper isn't on the menu; it's what I frequently order and I don't give it any thought. So, I ordered Dr. Pepper, she brought a glass out and I knew something was wrong. It turned out she brought out Diet Dr. Pepper.It bothered me that she brought out the wrong drink; Diet Dr. Pepper isn't just a variation, it's a completely different drink and I can't have it. That put a damper on the meal.The one consistent failing I found at Braden's Bistro is what's called "meat sauce" which is really sauce flavored with meat. Meat is used to enhance the sauce, it's not featured. To call it "meat sauce" is a definite exaggeration.There were a number of service issues the last two time I was at Braden's Bistro, all which added up to my leaving disgusted both times.Even after having bad service I won't hesitate to go to[...]



Welcome Back, To The McCune Collage Gallery

Thu, 01 Oct 2009 23:16:00 +0000

I was reminded by my buddy Kilroy_60 that I have a blogiversary coming up.He's throwing a Blogiversary Bash to celebrate his four-year blogiversary October 29th. Mine, also four years, comes about a month later, November 23rd. What can I say? When I saw how much fun he was having I wanted to get in on it.I don't know yet how I'll be celebrating my blogiversary. By the time the major holidays roll around blog carnivals are a lot more difficult to pull off with any degree of success.Speaking of blogiversaries, it was brought to my attention that I haven't posted any of my old collages for nearly two years, since my two-year blogiversary.Now that I've posted these I think I might have to take some new pictures.There was a time when putting collages together was an important part of my life.Looking back and the pieces and parts of what I called collagus maximus, it's hard to believe in some ways that it's been about 14-years since I worked on them. In other ways, based on the content, I'd think it's been longer.I worked on collagus maximus for 12 years and turned out 450 completed pieces. One day I took pictures of about 140 of them.I didn't look back through my previous posts to see which ones I included in previous editions of The McCune Collage Gallery series, excuse me if you've seen any of these before.Receiving comments is, of course, one of the things about blogging that's fun. I'd welcome any feedback you may have.[...]



Protect Insurance Companies PSA from Will Ferrell

Tue, 22 Sep 2009 22:38:00 +0000

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0-2 Jet Set Make Six Moves, Change Starting Lineup

Mon, 21 Sep 2009 17:23:00 +0000

(image) My fantasy football league team, The Jet Set, is 0-2 in the Sig Tau's league and I made six moves today to try and right the ship.

My team ranked 8th in a field of 12 after week one. Week two final results have not yet been posted, in light of the team's performance in week two I don't expect the outcome to be positive.

Today I cut one of my starters and two players off the bench.

Gone are RB LenDale White, Tennessee Titans, who was a starter, RB Laurence Maroney, New England Patriots, and WR Domenik Hixon, New York Giants.

(image) The new players I picked up to replace this trio are RB Felix Jones, Dallas Cowboys, RB Fred Taylor, New England Patriots, and WR Steve Smith, New York Giants

RB Correll Buckhalter, Denver Broncos, has been moved from the bench to replace LenDale White, who was cut, and newly acquired Steve Smith, New York Giants, is replacing Donald Driver, Green Bay Packers, as a starting WR.

Update...The Jet Set fell in the standings with the completion of week 2 from 8th of 12 to 10th.



The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, Cleveland, Ohio

Sun, 20 Sep 2009 11:51:00 +0000

On a Friday afternoon last month, when my mate had a day off from work, we went to Cleveland to visit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.If I recall correctly it was the sixth time we've visited the Rock Hall since it opened in 1995; the first time since February, 2006 when we were there the day before the Steelers won Super Bowl XL.Previously we've gone to check out featured exhibits paying tribute to Elvis Presley and John Lennon. The artist that's been featured, again in an exhibit that fills two floors and a portion of a third, is Bruce Springsteen.From Asbury Park To The Promised Land: The Life and Music of Bruce Springsteen will run through Spring, 2010.The historical marker outside the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum reads:BIRTHPLACE OF ROCK 'N' ROLL When radio station WJW disc jockey Alan Freed (1921-1965) used the term rock and roll to describe the uptempo black rhythm and blues records he played beginning in 1951, he named a new genre of popular music that appealed to audiences on both sides of 1950s American racial boundaries -- and dominated American culture for the rest of the 20th century. The popularity of Freed's nightly "Moon Dog House Rock and Roll Party" radio show encouraged him to organize the Moondog Coronation Ball -- the first rock concert. Held at the Cleveland Arena on March 21, 1952, the oversold show was beset by a riot during the first set. Freed, a charter inductee into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, moved to WINS in New York City in 1954 and continued to promote rock music through radio, television, movies, and live performances. The Ohio Bicentennial Commission The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame The Ohio Historical Society 2003 (48-18)There are no advantages to being out of work, especially when it's dragged on for more than a year, but it was nice to be able to make the trip on a Friday when there wasn't a huge crowd streaming in.I've you've ever been to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum you know there is no photography allowed inside; it's necessary for you to leave your camera at the coat check.At least that's what I understood, but it's not entirely true and some things have changed due largely to advances in technology.Actually, you are allowed to shoot in the first floor lobby, inside the main entrance, as well as in the lower level lobby.Once I handed over my camera to the coat check girl I learned a lesson that, to me, was rather distasteful. You are able to shoot photos inside the museum, if you don't mind taking the chance of getting handled, as long as you have a cell phone camera.Yes, I saw a half dozen people shooting pictures with their iPhones as they walked through the museum. I asked one of the ticket takers about it later. That's not a battle we always win, they said, we really can't take their phone.Take from that what you will.It's always a treat to visit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum.They do a great job of maintaining some exhibits which serve as a well thought introduction, both to the history of rock and as a way of welcoming new visitors, while at the same time updating exhibits which have been there from the beginning.There's a large area of the museum where stage costumes are on display; I've seen them put out new costumes for artists who've been there for a long time and they also rotate in costumes from new artists who've never been on display before.They have an interesting exhibit on display now that I'd never seen before; Johnny Cash's tour bus is parked outside.That was neat to see, along with a purple Cadillac that belonged to Elvis Presley and a Harley Davidson that bel[...]



Hurrican Ike Turned Out The Lights In Stark County

Thu, 17 Sep 2009 11:30:00 +0000

It was one year ago this week...After Hurricane Ike pounded the Lone Star State it blew into the heartland and slammed head on into Northeast Ohio. Winds near 60 mph turned out the lights in Stark County, Ohio.80,000 customers were left without electricity. Power went off in Canton's Market Heights neighborhood, where I live, just before 6 p.m. and stayed off until after 8 p.m. two days later.We were much more fortunate than the people in Texas; while trees snapped link kindling wood we didn't have to deal with rain. It was no walk in the park going without electricity for 50 hours, though.Emptying three trash bags of food from the refrigerator and freezer was anything but easy to take, of course. Especially after I spent $50 on groceries Saturday.The one thing that made this easier to deal with than when we went 19 hours without power in March is that it wasn't so blasted cold.These, I think, are the best pictures I shot; all within blocks of our house.[...]



Hummingbird Lane

Sun, 13 Sep 2009 04:26:00 +0000

It's rare that anyone forwards something to my Inbox which I feel is worth reading. Typically, those FWD, FWD, FWD emails are nothing more than an aggravation.Every now and then I get something that I like, but still don't consider passing it on to anyone else.Taking all that into consideration, if something is forwarded to me it has to be extraordinary for me to consider posting it in my blog.That brings me to this (exactly as I received it)...HUMMINGBIRD LANEThis is something I have never seen before, or ever even heard of. This woman lives in a Hummingbird fly zone. As they migrated, about 20 of them were in her yard. She took the little red dish, filled it with sugar water and this is the result.The woman is Abagail Alfano of Pine, Louisiana - she has been studying them daily and one morning put the cup from the feeder, with water in it, in her hand; as they had gotten used to her standing by the feeder they came over to her hand. She says in touching they are as light as a feather. Abagail also said, 'if she had known her husband was taking pictures she would have put on makeup!Consider it forwarded and, of course, feel free to pass on the link.[...]



Joseph Vincent Vigiano - A True American Hero, Lost In The 9-11 Attack On The World Trade Center

Fri, 11 Sep 2009 12:46:00 +0000

The Vigiano family is legendary in New York.The patriarch of the family, John, is a retired New York City firefighter captain. Twice in his career he was read his last rights, and survived.His twin sons (born on April 5th) Joseph Vincent Vigiano, a detective with the New York City Police Department, and John, a New York City firefighter, were both lost on September 11, 2001 in the attack on the World Trade Center.They were 34-years-old.Both the brothers were Eagle Scouts. Their father described Joseph as the funny one and John as the serious one.John had this to say about his sons, "They never embarrassed me. They were good fathers, good husbands and they were good men."I'm proud to pay tribute to...Joseph Vincent Vigiano.One of the heroes that went into the World Trade Center to save lives on 9-11.His body was found one month later and removed with a full honor guard. Joseph's brother's remains were never recovered.Joseph was posthumously awarded the New York City Police Department's Medal of Honor.In addition to his wife Kathy, who was also a police officer, Joseph left behind three sons.The two oldest boys are pictured at 6 and 8-years-old. The youngest one was three-months-old. The family lived in Medford, New York.Joseph was assigned to Emergency Services Squad 3 in Harlem.He had a 14-year career and was one of the NYPD's most decorated officers. Three different times he was shot in the line of duty; each time he returned to work.Sources of information used for this tribute included a Legacy.com page and the Officer Down Memorial Page dedicated to Joseph.Of everything I found when conducting research on the life of Joseph Vincent Vigiano nothing was more touching than this from his son...[...]



Kicking Off My First Fantasy Football Leage Season

Thu, 10 Sep 2009 23:47:00 +0000

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I'm trying something new this year. I have a team in a fantasy football league for the first time and the season kicks off tonight.

(image) The league I'm playing in is comprised of brothers from the (California University of Pennsylvania) Beta Iota chapter of the Sigma Tau Gamma fraternity.

It's a 12-team league; my team is The Jet Set.

In week one The Jet Set is up against Steel Curtain.

This is the starting team I'm putting on the field...
  • QB Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers
  • WR Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals
  • WR Donald Driver, Green Bay Packers
  • RB Clinton Portis, Washington Redskins
  • RB LenDale White, Tennessee Titans
  • TE Kellen Winslow, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  • W/R Devin Hester, Chicago Bears
  • K David Akers, Philadelphia Eagles
  • DEFENSE Pittsburgh Steelers
On the bench I have...
  • QB Eli Manning, New York Giants
  • RB Laurence Maroney, New England Patriots
  • RB Correll Buckhalter, Denver Broncos
  • WR Joey Galloway, New England Patriots
  • WR Domenik Hixon, New York Giants
  • TE Todd Heap, Baltimore Ravens
Kickoff time!



A Trubute to Thomas Richard Kelly - An American Hero Lost On September 11, 2001

Wed, 09 Sep 2009 04:01:00 +0000

I ask that you remember one of the heroes of 9-11... Thomas Richard Kellya New York City firefighter who lost his life at the World Trade Center. He was last seen going into the South Tower; a short time later it collapsed.Tommy Kelly, as he was known, lived in Riverhead, New York. Born February 13, 1963, he was the son of Emmett and Sue Kelly.Tommy was a a lieutenant in the New York City Fire Department assigned to Ladder 105.The Grateful Dead and the New York Mets were two of his passions. He was an avid bike rider and scuba diver.Reading comments written by family, friends and co-workers, in various online tributes, it's clear that he made the most of his 38 years.It's touching to read the entries in his Legacy. come Guest Book.Bob Kelly wrote, "February 13th, Tommy you would be 41. We think about you all the time. I visit the various memorials that so many kind people have made. Many of these folks never met you buddy. These are all outstanding tributes to a great fireman, true friend, a super uncle,a loving son and a brother who could make me laugh, and smile like only you could. The memorial on Coney Island is awsome . The stone and flag in Riverhead are as close to having you home as we can do. I just wish you were here ,happy birthday Tom save a seat for me up there in the bar.Look out for us all down here as things start to get tough. . I love you bro,Bobby "Joan Petrere wrote, "I think of you every day, Tommy and miss you very much. I remember all our fun and family parties. We all miss you greatly. It's not fair this happend to you. We know that you are with Kathleen.Love you and God Bless."Jeanne Farrell wrote, "Tommy, I think about you constantly. I can feel that you are here with all of us as we go through this horrible time together. I miss our late night phone calls. I miss the long talks. I miss your guidance and how you always helped me to keep life in perspective. I miss your laugh and your silliness.The kids miss you tremendously. Kate Loves You and misses you. We are all so proud of you and all the brave men and women who lost their lives that day. Please continue to be our strength and our guiding light. Thank you for all the lessons you gave me, Bobby, Jimmy,and mom and dad. WE ALL WISH YOU WERE HERE to celebrate your 40TH. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO OUR HERO AND OUR ANGEL."Sandra Eve Knoll wrote: "Dear Tom,Kate had asked me to speak at your memorial...but I couldn't. I wanted to speak today about you at a ceremony they had here today a year later at work..but I couldn't again. Sorry. I'm a lousy public speaker.I think I see your face in every passing bike rider. Funny how one's mind can play tricks. I couldn't get back on my bike at all this year. It isn't the same. I will always miss your smiling face riding back down whatever hill you had just conquered, in order to encourage me (and made me laugh hard enough to fall off the bike on more than one occasion), as I struggled my way up.You treated me like your oldest friend from the day we met. You opened your house and life to me like we had known each other forever. I'll never forget the rides, or the talks, or the laughs.You will never be forgotten. You were my hero.Sandi"Sources include The New York Times. (This is a great read)I pray that the family and friends of Tommy Kelly find peace. I'm proud to do my small part to have his memory carry on.[...]



A Worldwide Moment

Wed, 09 Sep 2009 00:09:00 +0000

I am one of nearly 2,000 people from 100 countries who made a pledge to shoot a photograph and capture a worldwide moment: 09.09.09+09GMT@09:09.

+09GMT@09:09 translates to 9:09 AM in Greenwich, England and 8:09 PM here in Canton, Ohio.

WorldwideMoment.org describes 09.09.09+09GMT@09:09 as, "a simultaneous photography project to encourage international peace, human rights, and artistic collaboration!"

This is my contribution (Reference #267581267581)...

Worldwide Moment - 09.09.09+09GMT@09:09
Canton, Ohio, United States of America

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The Pro Football Hall of Fame and Museum is one of the most prominent places in Stark County and, some would say, the State of Ohio. It closes at 5 PM, though, so at 8:09 it’s the most peaceful place you can imagine.



Take The Long Way Home

Tue, 08 Sep 2009 02:29:00 +0000

It's not often enough that I get to take a trip when I have a chance to get off the highway and simply enjoy traveling, instead of focusing on reaching a destination as soon as possible.I had the good fortune to do exactly that, though, last week when I spent five days visiting my family and friends.Over the years I've taken four different routes from Canton to my parents' house in Fayette County, Pennsylvania; about 30 miles south of Pittsburgh. The shortest, with no stops, takes about three hours; what's become my favorite, when I have the opportunity to take it, is a five-hour trip if I stop a few times.The first leg of the trip from Canton takes you south on Ohio State Route 800...Next comes Ohio Route 416, which takes you through the town of New Philadelphia...Ohio 416 is a connecting route that leads to Ohio Route 250...Ohio Route 250 takes you all the way to Wheeling, West Virginia. Along the way you pass through the Tappan Lake Reservoir area.It's not whether you want to stop and take pictures at Tappan, if you have the time, but, simply, how often you'll stop...You also pass through Clark Gable's hometown, the Village of Cadiz, on Route 250...In Wheeling, West Virgina you pick up U.S. Route 40 and that takes you into Fayette County, Pennsylvania.Just outside of Wheeling, in Triadelphia, you'll see something unique.I've seen a lot of barns painted with a Mail Pouch Tobacco advertisement over the years. Since they're no longer being painted, at least to the best of my knowledge, the number of these barns is rapidly decreasing and those that still exist are, all too often, deteriorated.It wasn't until I passed through Triadelphia, though, that I saw a garage painted with a Mail Pouch ad...This portion of U.S. Route 40 runs, more or less, along the route of The National Road.The National Road was created by an act of Congress in 1806; it was the first federally funded highway construction project. Route 40 connects Cumberland, Maryland, with Vandalia, Illinois.I passed two of these statues, known as Madonna of the Trail, along this portion of The National Road...This one, as I recall, was in the Scenery Hill area, between Washington and Brownsville.The last "landmark" I have to share is important solely through my eyes.As a kid I used to go with my grandparents to an Italian grocery store. Through a child's eye it was a big trip, going somewhere that I didn't see more than a few times a year, and it seemed to be far away from where we lived. The store, in fact, was only about a half hour drive.Last week I stopped at the store and was surprised to find it is still open. The last two times it had been closed.It didn't come as a surprise that the store looked a lot smaller to me than I remembered it. What made an impact, though, was it smelled exactly the same.It turns out the brother of the man my grandparents knew runs the store on a day-to-day basis and their old friend still comes in on occasion. I wanted to take his picture, but he didn't want it to appear on the intenet.In any case, it was a visit I won't forget any time soon.I don't know if you've ever asked someone (in the United States) how to reach a destination "without driving on the highway", but it's not unusual for the response to basically be, You can't get there from here.It may take a bit of extra effort, studying a map and/or pushing the AAA agent do work a little harder, but the payoff is well worth it. Th[...]