Outdoors news briefs


Staff Reports



Officer Joshua Shields.


Cabela’s National Walleye Tour Opens Season on Lake Erie at Huron, Ohio, April 12-13

Professional walleye circuit gearing up for the first tournament of the 2017 season

NEW SMYRNA BEACH, Fla. – Competitive walleye anglers will converge on Lake Erie at Huron, Ohio, April 12-13, for the season-opening event of the 2017 Cabela’s National Walleye Tour. The tournament circuit features a pro-am style format and guarantees over 100 percent payback.

The Lake Erie event begins Tuesday, April 11, with tournament registration from 2-4 p.m. at Sawmill Creek Resort (400 Sawmill Creek Dr., Huron, OH 44839) with a mandatory pre-tournament meeting set to start at 5:00 p.m. Pro and co-angler pairings will be announced at the pre-tournament meeting.

Anglers will launch Wednesday and Thursday mornings at 7 a.m. from the Huron River Boat Ramp (41 Cleveland Rd East, Huron). Weigh in location will be announced at the meeting on Tuesday evening and posted then for the general public.

Registration for the Lake Erie event is already underway. To register, please go online and click on register. All anglers that register online will be entered in to a drawing for a $100 Cabela’s gift card.

Anglers that were born after Jan. 1, 1982, are required to take the Boaters Education course through the Ohio Watercraft Department (614-265-6485). All co-anglers and anyone planning to cross into Canadian waters to fish must obtain a Canadian fishing license.

During each day of competition, Triton Boats and Mercury Marine are offering free demo rides in the acclaimed 216 Fishhunter. The demo rides will take off from the boat launch.

The National Professional Anglers Association (NPAA) will also host a “Future Angler” program for children after Friday’s weigh-in, approximately at 4:30 p.m., featuring an educational seminar and training for youth from top-notch NPAA members. The youth-orientated event will include a free rod/reel combo or “Future Pro” t-shirt for the first 150 children who attend the educational program.

Anglers who are participating in any of the numerous contingency prize programs are encouraged to submit all pertinent information at registration to remain eligible for any potential bonus money.

The NWT would like to thank the Huron Chamber of Commerce, City of Huron Parks & Recreation and Sawmill Creek Resort for their assistance with putting together this event.

As always, all NWT events will deliver 100 percent payback. A fully rigged Ranger 1880, plus cash, is guaranteed for first place at each event – a minimum total value of $61,000. First-place also offers potential boat and motor upgrades. Anglers that fish all three regular-season events, in addition to the top points leaders, will qualify for the three-day, entry-fee championship.

New for 2017 – the first-place Co-Angler at the NWT championship event will win a new Ranger 1682 with 115 horsepower Evinrude outboard, valued at $26,500.

The tournament circuit also includes unprecedented television and media coverage, allowing a national audience to watch the action unfold from each event throughout the season. Airing on multiple networks, the National Walleye Tour will be seen on FOX Sports, World Fishing Network and Pursuit Channel, as well as the NBC Sports Network.

For more details, anglers are encouraged to call 612-424-0708 or 501-317-7548 or check out the new website at www.nationalwalleyetour.com. From here, site visitors can register for events, view the contingency programs and TV schedule and learn more about what’s in-store for 2016.

National Walleye Tour events are made possible through the sponsorship and continued support of these well-respected brands: Cabela’s, Ranger Boats, Lucas Oil, Evinrude, RAM, Mercury, Minn Kota, Triton Boats, Power-Pole, Evinrude, Arctic Ice, Stratos Boats, Lowrance, MotorGiude, Protect the Harvest, Raymarine, Valley Fashions, T-H Marine, Atlas, G-Juice, Powertex Group.

2017 NWT scheduled events:

  • April 12-13 – Lake Erie (Huron, Ohio)
  • May 11-12 – Lake Sakakawea (Garrison, N.D.)
  • June 15-16 – Mississippi River (Prairie du Chien, Wis.)
  • Championship – Aug. 16-18 – Green Bay (Marinette, Wis.)

About Cabela’s National Walleye Tour

Cabela’s National Walleye Tour events are made possible through the sponsorship and continued support of these well-respected brands: Cabela’s, Ranger Boats, Lucas Oil, Evinrude, RAM, Mercury, Motor Guide, Jimmy John’s, Minn Kota, Triton Boats, Power-Pole, Amphibia, Arctic Ice, Stratos Boats, Lowrance, Protect the Harvest, BoatU.S., General Tire, SuperClean, Raymarine, Valley Fashions, T-H Marine, Atlas, G-Juice, Powertex Group.

Catchable trout are scheduled for release at several central Ohio locations on Friday April 14th.

Franklin County- Antrim Lake (The stocking truck should arrive around 11 a.m.)

Delaware County- Blue Limestone Park

Knox County- Foundation Park

Marion County- Quarry Park

Catchable Trout Releases

Scheduled to Begin in March

COLUMBUS – More than 100,000 rainbow trout are expected to be released this spring in 64 Ohio public lakes and ponds, creating excellent fishing opportunities for anglers all across Ohio, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). The first rainbow trout release is scheduled for Friday, March 3, at Adams Lake in Adams County.

Rainbow trout releases will take place across Ohio from March 3-May 21 as long as areas are ice-free and accessible to anglers. Information about the trout releases, including updates to the schedule due to weather and stocking locations, is available at wildohio.gov or by calling 800-WILDLIFE (945-3543).

By stocking these water areas throughout the state, opportunities are created for anglers of all ages to get out and enjoy quality spring trout fishing in a family-friendly environment. Many stocked locations will feature special angler events, including youth-only fishing on the day of the trout release.

Rainbow trout are raised at Ohio’s state fish hatcheries and measure 10-13 inches before they are released by the ODNR Division of Wildlife. The daily catch limit for inland lakes is five trout.

Anglers age 16 and older must have an Ohio fishing license to fish in state public waters. The 2017-2018 fishing license is now available and is valid through Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2018. An annual resident fishing license costs $19. A one-day fishing license costs $11 for residents and nonresidents. The one-day license may also be redeemed for credit toward the purchase of an annual fishing license.

Licenses and permits can be purchased online at wildohio.gov and at participating agents throughout the state. A complete list of participating license sales agents can be found at wildohio.gov.

Sales of fishing licenses along with the federal Sport Fish Restoration (SFR) program continue to fund the operation of the ODNR Division of Wildlife’s fish hatcheries. No state tax dollars are used for this activity. This is a user-pay, user-benefit program.

The SFR program is a partnership between federal and state government, industry, anglers and boaters. When anglers purchase rods, reels, fishing tackle, fish finders and motor boat fuel, they pay an excise tax. The federal government collects these taxes, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service administers and disburses these funds to state fish and wildlife agencies. These funds are used to acquire habitat, produce and stock fish, conduct research and surveys, provide aquatic education to youth and secure and develop boat accesses.

For a list of trout stocking dates and locations, go to wildlife.ohiodnr.gov/fishing/trout-stocking-dates.

Ohioans Invited to Enjoy a Weekend of Free Fishing

May 6-7 is Ohio’s free fishing weekend

Ohio is known for its world-class fishing, and on May 6-7, state residents are invited to take part in the annual free fishing weekend, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). Ohio’s Free Fishing Days are open to all Ohio residents and extend to all of Ohio’s public waters, including Lake Erie and the Ohio River. This is the only weekend all year that does not require anyone 16-years-old or older to obtain a fishing license.

The ODNR Division of Wildlife’s six fish hatcheries stocked more than 54 million sport fish in public waters in 2016, including walleye, saugeye, steelhead, rainbow trout, brown trout, muskellunge, channel catfish, blue catfish and hybrid striped bass, which will provide opportunities for more than 1.3 million Ohio anglers.

Ohio State Parks is also offering a camping discount during Ohio’s Free Fishing Days. Campers can receive a 20 percent off discount May 6-7 by using the promotion code 17ANGLER.

The Free Fishing Days weekend offers Ohioans of all ages the chance to experience the fun of catching a fish. Here are some helpful tips for taking a youngster out fishing.

  • Keep the trip simple by considering a child’s age and skill level.
  • Choose a pond, lake or stream where children will be able to easily catch a few fish.
  • A spin-cast reel is usually the easiest for kids to use.
  • Bring a camera and snacks.
  • Be patient – plan on spending time untangling lines, baiting hooks, landing fish and taking pictures.
  • Most of all, keep the trip fun.

Anglers 16 years and older are required to have a valid fishing license to take fish, frogs or turtles from Ohio waters when not fishing on Ohio’s free fishing weekend. An Ohio resident fishing license is only $19 a year for residents. Fishing licenses are available at participating agents and wildohio.gov.

The sales of fishing licenses, along with the Sport Fish Restoration (SFR) program, continue to fund the ODNR Division of Wildlife’s fish management operations. No state tax dollars are used for these activities. These are user-pay, user-benefit programs.

The SFR is a partnership between federal and state governments, industry and anglers/boaters. When anglers purchase rods, reels, fishing tackle, fish finder and motor boat fuel, they pay an excise tax. The federal government collects these taxes, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service administers and disburses these funds to state fish and wildlife agencies. These funds are used to acquire habitat, produce and stock fish; conduct research and surveys; provide aquatic education; and acquire and develop boat accesses.

BoatUS Testifies on Improving Boater Experience at National Parks

WASHINGTON, DC, April 5, 2017 – At a hearing held by a House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee featuring speakers from the public and private sectors, BoatUS Vice President Government Affairs Chris Edmonston urged Congress to ensure that tough budget times do not jeopardize recreational boating access in America’s National Parks. In his testimony Edmonston also gave the half-million-member boating group’s support for more public-private partnerships and technology investments in an effort to improve the visitor experience.

Edmonston, who is concurrently BoatUS Foundation President, said, “To state the obvious, without adequate waterway access there is virtually no opportunity to go boating…(we) suggest that investment in facilities that provide access to public lands and waters should remain a priority.”

Edmonston referred in his testimony to boating trouble spots such as the limited weekend boat launch ramp access at South Padre Island (TX) National Island Seashore, and the unwelcoming fishing access policies, shortage of boat moorings, and outright bans of certain boat types at Biscayne National Park in Florida.

Edmonston also pointed out the success of pubic-private partnerships that can meet the needs of boaters. He cites BoatUS’ own TowBoatUS on water assistance service that began as a result of federal cost saving measures, and today preserves vital USCG resources for emergency missions while giving boaters the routine towing services they need at a reasonable cost.

BoatUS also embraces the increasing use of technology “as way to enhance access while protecting resources,” Edmonston said. BoatUS points to mobile-friendly methods to obtain multiple licenses and permits, or using technology to improve navigation, as examples.

Also discussed in his testimony was the boater-funded Sportfish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund, recently reauthorized through 2020. The “user pay — everyone benefits” fund uses taxes that boaters and anglers pay to match state, local and private investment for boating access such as launch ramps or transient slips. “Boaters are not looking for a free ride, and are quite willing to pay reasonable fees provided they can count on the facilities being available and well managed,” he said.

2017 Lake Erie Sport Fishing Outlook

Once Again Great News for Anglers

Walleye and yellow perch bag limits announced

Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Director James Zehringer and Rich Carter, executive administrator of fish management and research for the ODNR Division of Wildlife, announced that Lake Erie anglers should anticipate experiencing another year of diverse fishing opportunities in 2017. Zehringer and Carter were joined by Ohio Environmental Protection Agency Director Craig Butler and Larry Fletcher, president of Lake Erie Shores and Islands. Great walleye hatches from 2014 and 2015 are expected to contribute to exceptional fishing opportunities in Lake Erie this year. Anglers pursuing yellow perch in the Western Basin will likely find excellent numbers of yellow perch.

Lake Erie walleye and yellow perch fisheries are managed through an interagency quota system that involves Ontario, Michigan, Pennsylvania, New York and Ohio. Each jurisdiction regulates its catches to comply with quotas and minimize the risk of over-fishing these species. Quotas for the upcoming fishing season are determined through consensus agreement by these jurisdictions through the Lake Erie Committee of the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, which were just recently announced for 2017.

Currently, the walleye daily bag limit is four, and the yellow perch daily bag limit is 30 per angler in Ohio waters of Lake Erie until April 30. As a result of the 2017 quota allocation, the daily bag limit will be six walleye from May 1 through Feb. 28, 2018. From March 1, 2018, through April 30, 2018, the daily walleye bag limit will be four. A 15-inch minimum size limit is in effect during the entire season for walleye. The yellow perch daily bag limit will be 30 from May 1 through April 30, 2018, with no minimum size limit. Lake Erie anglers can find walleye and yellow perch bag limit information at ODNR offices, in special publications at bait and tackle shops and at wildohio.gov.

Walleye

Ohio walleye anglers will catch fish mostly from the 2015, 2014 and 2013 hatches, with some fish from the 2012, 2011, 2010 and 2009 year classes. Additional fish from 2007 and 2003 will also be harvested by anglers. Walleye from the 2014 hatch will range from 16-19 inches, while walleye from the 2013 hatch will be between 17-22 inches. Fish from the 2003 and 2007 hatches are likely to carry most of the Central Basin fisheries, and a good number of these walleye will be over the 26-inch range. Large walleye from strong hatch in 2003 will continue to provide “Fish Ohio” opportunities (greater than 28 inches), with this year class nearing the size that may give Ohio a new state record walleye. Additionally, in 2017, anglers should see a number of smaller (less than 15 inches) fish from the excellent 2015 hatch. Anglers are reminded of the 15-inch minimum size limit and encouraged to release these fish with as little handling as possible so they can contribute to the fisheries in future years. As the 2017 season progresses, more of the 2-year-old fish will surpass the 15-inch minimum size limit.

Yellow Perch

Expect excellent perch fishing in 2017, with improving numbers of fish in the Western Basin. Perch anglers in the west will primarily catch perch from 2013, 2014 and 2015, providing a good range of sizes. The largest perch in the Western Basin will come from 2012 and older year classes. Central Basin anglers should expect to find average numbers of yellow perch, with most fish coming from the 2012 year class and to a lesser extent, the 2014 year class. Older fish from years prior to 2012 will provide the potential for trophy yellow perch.

Black Bass

Smallmouth bass fishing in 2017 is expected to be consistent with recent years. In 2016, smallmouth bass catch rates were well above average for the fifth consecutive year, and in 2017, anglers should expect more of the same, including an excellent size range (14 to 22 inches and weighing up to 6 pounds). The best fishing for smallmouth bass will continue to be in areas with good bottom structure, which is the available habitat across much of the entire Ohio nearshore and islands.

Continuing the trend from previous years, largemouth bass fishing should be excellent in 2017. This fishery continues to produce exceptional catch rates and some large fish in nearshore areas and harbors across Ohio’s Lake Erie. All black bass (smallmouth and largemouth) must be immediately released from May 1 through June 23. Beginning June 24, the daily bag limit for bass will be five, with a 14-inch minimum length limit.

Steelhead

Steelhead anglers should enjoy another year of great fishing in 2017 in Ohio’s Lake Erie open waters and in tributaries. Peak summer steelhead action on Lake Erie can be found offshore from June through August between Vermilion and Conneaut, with catches measuring 17 to 29 inches. Most Lake Erie anglers troll for steelhead in deep waters using spoons with divers or downriggers until fish move close to shore in the fall. The daily bag limit remains at five fish per angler from May 16 through Aug. 31, and two fish per angler between Sept. 1 and May 15, 2018. A 12-inch minimum size limit is in effect throughout the year.

White Bass

White bass continue to provide excellent seasonal fishing opportunities in the Maumee and Sandusky rivers and in the open lake. The 2017 catch will continue to be dominated by fish from the 2012 and 2010 year classes. Fish from older year classes could be as large as 16 inches. Anglers should focus on major Western Basin tributaries during May and June and nearshore areas of the open lake during the summer. There is no white bass daily bag limit or size limit.

Other Species

Bays, harbors and main lake shorelines offer excellent fishing for panfish, as well as occasional northern pike and muskellunge in vegetated areas.

Anglers are reminded that fishing conditions on Lake Erie can change hourly, and adjustments are often necessary to improve success. Anglers should take into account factors such as water temperature, cloud cover, water clarity, boat traffic, wave action, structure, currents and the amount of baitfish in the area. Anglers are also reminded to carefully monitor Lake Erie weather and to seek safe harbor before storms approach.

Updated Lake Erie fishing reports are available at wildohio.gov or by calling 888-HOOKFISH (888-466-5347). Information is available from ODNR Division of Wildlife staff from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays at the Fairport Harbor station (440-352-4199) for the Central Basin and at Sandusky station (419-625-8062) for the Western Basin.

Information on the ODNR Division of Wildlife’s Lake Erie research and management programs, fisheries resources, fishing reports, maps and links to other Lake Erie web resources are available at wildohio.gov.

2017 Ohio Sport Fish Consumption Advisory

Highlights Improvements in Ottawa River

Ohio EPA Director Craig W. Butler was at Marblehead Lighthouse State Park to announce the state’s new guidelines for eating fish caught from Ohio’s lakes, rivers and streams, reflecting notable improvements in the waters of the state.

Among the notable improvements from fish data collected last summer: do not eat advisories were removed for the Ottawa River (Toledo) for all species and replaced with less strict recommendations – a sign of improved conditions.

“The types of fish you find in a river are great indicators of the health of the water and the Ottawa River in Toledo represents one of Ohio’s great ongoing success stories,” Director Butler said. “Through state and local cleanup efforts, and with help from federal funding through programs like the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, we are now able to remove the comprehensive do not eat fish advisory for the Ottawa River that was put in place in 1991. As we know, however, there is still more work to do to improve water quality throughout Lake Erie and Ohio River watersheds.”

Fish can be part of a healthy diet and evaluations of fish tissue are showing some places where anglers can eat all of certain varieties of fish that they can legally catch. Unless otherwise notated in the new recommendations, a general advisory is in place that recommends limiting one meal each week of Ohio-caught fish. Some areas in this year’s Ohio fish study were evaluated for the first time, and the general advisory was applied as a baseline. Waterbodies recognized as improved or less restrictive than the one fish per week recommendation for certain species include: Atwood, Belmont and Loramie lakes, as well as the Huron, Ottawa and Walhonding rivers.

Ohio EPA partners with Ohio Department of Health and Ohio Department of Natural Resources to develop the Sport Fish Consumption Advisory. Additional information about fish consumption safety for women of child-bearing age, pregnant and nursing mothers, and children under 15 can be found at Women, Infant and Children (WIC) Centers, local health departments, Ohio EPA and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources regional offices.

The 2017 fish consumption advisory information is available online. Printed copies can be requested by calling (614) 644-2160.

Union County Wildlife Officer Receives High Praises from Peers

State Wildlife Officer Joshua Shields, assigned to Union County, has been named Wildlife Officer of the Year by Wildlife Officer Lodge 143 of the Fraternal Order of Police of the State of Ohio, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR).

Officer Shields received his nomination along with 11 other wildlife officers and investigators throughout Ohio. His dedication to the wildlife resource and his fellow officers does not go unnoticed. Shields serves as a field training officer, a member of the Wildlife Officer Honor Guard, a fitness instructor, and the coordinator of the ODNR Officer Support Team. Currently, he is working on a Line of Duty death policy to help his fellow officers in the event of a tragic incident. In addition to his commitment to the Division of Wildlife, Shields served our county in Iraq in 2004 and currently serves in the Ohio Army National Guard.

Officer Shields started his career with ODNR in 2002 as a seasonal, later to be hired on as a Wildlife Area Technician at Wolf Creek Wildlife Area in 2007. In 2009, he graduated from the wildlife officer training academy and was assigned to Meigs County, before transferring to Union County.

Officer Shields currently resides in Union County with his wife and two children.

Officer Shields is a prime example of the passion and professionalism wildlife officers bring to the field every day. Wildlife Officer Lodge 143 could not be prouder of his accomplishments and dedication.

More information about becoming a state wildlife officer or the ODNR Division of Wildlife can be found at wildohio.gov.

Hunters Prepare for Ohio’s 2017 Wild Turkey Season

Youth-only hunt set for April 22-23

For many hunters, spring brings the unmistakable sound of gobbling wild turkeys as Ohio’s annual hunt of this popular game bird begins. New for the 2017 season, the state has been divided into two zones for spring turkey hunting: a south zone, which opens to hunters on Monday, April 24, and a northeast zone, which opens to hunters on Monday, May 1. The youth wild turkey season will occur on Saturday and Sunday, April 22-23, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). Hunters can view the 2017 spring turkey season zone map at wildohio.gov.

After hearing concerns expressed by those hunting in Ohio’s snowbelt, the ODNR Division of Wildlife surveyed hunters in the northeastern part of the state and conducted a two-year study to examine if turkeys were nesting later there than in other regions of the state. Biologists found that hens in snowbelt counties nested nearly two weeks later than hens in southeastern counties, which supported the creation of a two-zone spring turkey season for 2017 and beyond.

The ODNR Division of Wildlife anticipates approximately 65,000 licensed hunters, not counting exempt landowners hunting on their own property, will enjoy Ohio’s popular spring wild turkey season before it ends on Sunday, May 21, in the south zone, and Sunday, May 28, in the northeast zone. The spring and youth turkey seasons are open statewide with the exception of Lake La Su An Wildlife Area in Williams County, which requires a special hunting permit.

The youth-only turkey season is April 22-23 for youth possessing a valid youth hunting license and a turkey permit. Youth hunters must be accompanied by a non-hunting adult, 18 years of age or older. Only two wild turkeys may be checked by a youth hunter during the two-day season. Additionally, if two turkeys are harvested in the youth season, no additional birds may be taken by the youth hunter for the duration of the spring turkey season.

Hunters are required to have a hunting license and a spring turkey hunting permit. The spring season bag limit is two bearded turkeys. Hunters can harvest one bearded turkey per day, and a second spring turkey permit can be purchased at any time throughout the spring turkey season. Turkeys must be checked no later than 11:30 p.m. the day of harvest. All hunters must report their turkey harvest using the automated game-check system, which is available online, by phone or at a license agent. A complete list of participating license agents can be found at wildohio.gov. Visit the Turkey Hunting Resources page at wildohio.gov, or call 800-WILDLIFE (945-3543) for more information about the game-check process.

Hunting hours are 30 minutes before sunrise until noon from April 24-May 7 in the south zone and May 1-14 in the northeast zone. Hunting hours are 30 minutes before sunrise to sunset from May 8-21 in the south zone and May 15-28 in the northeast zone. Hunting hours during the two-day youth season are 30 minutes before sunrise to sunset.

Hunters may use shotguns or archery equipment to hunt wild turkeys. It is unlawful to hunt turkeys using bait, live decoys or electronic calling devices, and it is unlawful to shoot a wild turkey while it is in a tree. The ODNR Division of Wildlife advises turkey hunters to wear hunter orange clothing when entering, leaving or moving through hunting areas in order to remain visible to others.

Wild turkeys were extirpated in Ohio by 1904 and were reintroduced in the 1950s by the ODNR Division of Wildlife. Ohio’s first modern day wild turkey season opened in 1966 in nine counties, and hunters checked 12 birds. The wild turkey harvest topped 1,000 for the first time in 1984. Spring turkey hunting opened statewide in 2000, and Ohio hunters checked more than 20,000 wild turkeys for the first time that year.

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Campgrounds managed by the Huntington District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in portions of West Virginia, Kentucky and Virginia will begin opening for the 2017 season in April. Opening dates at Corps-managed campgrounds will vary depending on location.

Campsites may be reserved at Burnsville (Bulltown), Sutton (Gerald R. Freeman), East Lynn (East Fork), Summersville (Battle Run), and all 3 campgounds at John W. Flannagan by calling the National Recreation Reservation System (NRRS) at 877-444-6777 or Internet: recreation.gov. Call the lakes or campgrounds listed above for further information.

Velvet Ice Cream’s Ye Olde Mill opens for the 2017 season

New season brings new flavors, changes to 103-year-old company’s attraction

Due to popular demand, Velvet Ice Cream opened the doors to Ye Olde Mill for the 2017 season on April 3—the earliest date in the Utica, Ohio-based ice cream maker’s 103-year history.

The 2017 season brings significant changes to Ye Olde Mill, including re-designed casual and contemporary staff uniforms and fresh, new ice cream flavors and sundaes. The new uniforms will feature a crisp gingham button-down shirt for Ye Olde Mill servers, paired with a rustic, custom-crafted denim apron. New ice cream flavors launched this season include Lemon Cheesecake, Spicy Caramel and Sticky Pudding. In addition, delicious new items added to the restaurant at Ye Olde Mill include an Amish Fried Pie Milkshake and a Sweet ‘n Salty Caramel Ice Cream Frappuccino.

In addition to the restaurant and ice cream parlor, visitors enjoy free activities, such as touring the interactive ice cream and milling museum, exploring the playground and nature trails, feeding the ducks and fishing in the Mill’s catch-and-release pond and taking one the nation’s best ice cream factory tours, as named by Frommer’s.

Ye Olde Mill will also host a pair of special events for visitors on April 8 and 9. From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on April 8, Mill guests can enjoy a free ice cream cone to celebrate the return of warm weather. And on Sunday, April 9, Velvet Ice Cream will host its annual Easter Egg Hunt on the Mill’s sprawling grounds.

“We’re so excited to open the Mill earlier than ever this year for our visitors,” said Joanne Dager, Vice President of Velvet Ice Cream. “We can’t wait to show our guests the exciting changes we’ve been working on for our 2017 season, including brand-new flavors, additions to our menu and a fresh look for our staff.”

Dager added that Velvet’s Ye Olde Mill is a popular day trip for families and groups of friends, as well as corporate teambuilding, childcare and senior centers, special needs organizations and Red Hat and other groups and societies and associations.

All throughout the season, visitors can enjoy family-friendly events, such as: live music and entertainment on weekends and holidays; Mother’s and Father’s Day specials; deals during July, which is National Ice Cream Month and more. Velvet Ice Cream’s Ye Olde Mill is open to visitors at the following times:

  • April, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • May, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • June-August, 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.
  • September, 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.
  • October, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The Mill welcomes 150,000 visitors each year for tours, tastings, events and live entertainment on weekends. The annual Ice Cream Festival (Memorial Day Weekend, May 27-29, 2017), group tour experiences and school learning field trips are among the many draws to Ye Olde Mill.

2017 marks 103 years of business for Velvet Ice Cream. Founded in 1914 by Joseph Dager, four generations of Dagers have since run the company, which is located in Utica, Ohio on 25 acres of the perfect combination of wooded countryside and rolling, pastoral farmland. Still family-owned and operated, Velvet produces and distributes more than five million gallons of ice cream every year from its headquarters on the grounds of Ye Olde Mill. Ye Olde Mill also houses an ice cream and milling museum, a restaurant, playground, picnic area and catch-and-release fish pond. Entertainment schedules and complete information about Velvet Ice Cream and Ye Olde Mill is available VelvetIceCream.com.

“Fake News” from the Past: Archaeological Mysteries and the Psychology of Deception

Where: Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum, 300 N. Whitewoman Street, Coshocton, Ohio

When: May 13, 2017, 1 to 5 P.M.

Admission: Adults: $16, Students: $10

Phone: 740.622.8710 Email: jhmuseum@jhmuseum.org

A public symposium, “Fake News” from the Past: Archaeological Mysteries and the Psychology of Deception, will be presented at the Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum on May 13, 2017, from 1–5 P.M. The keynote speaker, Dr. Peter Hancock, is the author of Hoax Springs Eternal—The Psychology of Cognitive Deception. Dr. Hancock will be using well-known historical hoaxes to explain the nature of deception, leading his listeners through a captivating tour of the human mind—its strengths and frailties. Joining Dr. Hancock are three panelists who have researched “archaeological finds” in the Americas that were most certainly hoaxes although enthusiastically embraced at the time of discovery. Panelists include Dr. Bradley Lepper, Senior Curator of Archaeology for the Ohio History Connection in Columbus, Dr. Jennifer Raff, Assistant Professor of Physical Anthropology at the University of Kansas, and Dr. David Anderson, Ph.D. in Anthropology from Tulane University. Admission is $14 for adults and $10 for students and Friends of the Museum.

Dr. Hancock is interested in the three elements of a deception, or the “Trinity of Deception”: the deception, the deceiver and the deceived. For Hoax Springs Eternal he singled out deceptions that were artifact centered and in which the deceiver designed the deception not just to confuse others but to actively inculcate a specific belief about the true state of the world. The third leg of the trinity, the deceived, engages in “cognitive deception”—purposely induced failures of attention, memory, and decision-making capacities. Hancock explicates these three elements in each of his stories. Many of his studies are popular historical mysteries, such as King Arthur’s Cross, the Vinland Map, the Kensington Runestone, and the Shroud of Turin. Dr. Hancock, D.Sc., Ph.D. is Provost Distinguished Research Professor in the Department of Psychology and the Institute for Simulation and Training, and at the Departments of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Central Florida. He is a leader in ergonomics education and has written or edited twenty books in the field.

Each panelist has researched artifacts that are promoted by fringe archaeologists as being authentic although the objects cannot be verified using traditional archaeological methods. These fringe archaeologists follow a movement called fantastic archaeology or pseudoarchaeology which interprets the past from outside the archaeological science community, dismissing accepted data gathering and analytical methods. The panelists are all scientists who reject these pseudo-archaeological methods and conclusions.

Panelist Brad Lepper has worked on archaeological projects from the mountains of Montana to the forests of Maine. He teaches university courses in archaeology and anthropology and writes a column on archaeology for the Columbus Dispatch. He is the author of Ohio Archaeology: an illustrated chronicle of Ohio’s ancient American Indian cultures. Dr. Lepper’s interest in the subject of hoaxes began when, as a graduate student in the 1980s conducting research on the Walhonding River Valley, he was introduced to the Newark Holy Stones by the director of the Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum. Thus began a decades-long effort to understand the historical context of the Holy Stones, the motives behind their fabrication, and why more than a century after archaeologists dismissed these artifacts as frauds, they still figure so prominently in the public imagination. The Newark Holy Stones are on permanent display at the Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum.

Panelist Jennifer Raff has a dual Ph.D. in Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology and Physical Anthropology from Indiana University. Her research focuses on the molecular genetics of evolution through the analysis of genomes from ancient and contemporary human populations, with a special emphasis on the initial colonization and subsequent population of the American continents. She will be discussing the perpetuation of the myth that the first inhabitants of the Americas were actually Europeans and also the claim that the Paracas peoples of Peru (characterized by cranial modifications) were alien-European hybrids. Dr. Raff is frequently engaged in debunking pseudoscience, particularly as it relates to the misuse of genetics in pseudoarchaeology and the propagation of genetic myths. She has appeared on numerous podcasts (including Science for the People, Archaeological Fantasies, and the Prism Podcast), given public talks at Science on Tap and Skepticon, and writes regularly about these topics and science literacy on her blog Violent Metaphors.

Panelist David Anderson’s doctoral fieldwork focused on the development of the social-political structure and institutions of the ancient Maya. For the symposium he will discuss the “Acambaro Figurines,” a group of figurines found in Mexico the 1950s that seemed to show dinosaurs and humans interacting with one another. Recently these figurines have been embraced by groups pushing for a temporal overlap between dinosaurs and humans. Over the past five years, Dr. Anderson has becoming increasingly involved in examining how the academic community should engage with pseudo-archaeological claims and hoaxes. His investigations have turned to the roots that allow these ideas to thrive. He is currently working on a manuscript for the book Weirding Archaeology, which examines the influences that esoteric spiritual movements, secret fraternal orders, and popular culture have had on the public perception of archaeological research.

“Fake News” from the Past: Archaeological Mysteries and the Psychology of Deception is highly recommended to all who are interested in history, the human psyche, social/political movements, and mystery itself. Moreover, if you’re wondering why we allow ourselves to believe in narratives or ideas that hover over fact and reason but never actually touch solid land, this is the event for you. Dr. Hancock’s roots in science coupled with his fascination with history and human behavior have melded to produce a thorough and lucid investigation of the historical hoax. It should be noted, that although Hancock will present the characteristics of effective deception, he never encourages its practice.

Admission cost is $14 for Adults and $10 for Students and Friends of the Museum. Paid registration is accepted by mail, phone or through the museum’s website (www.jhmuseum.org). Late registration (after May 5th) is $17 for adults and $13 for students. “Fake News” from the Past: Archaeological Mysteries and the Psychology of Deception is sponsored by Dr. Robert Fox and the Simpson Family Foundation. The Ohio Arts Council helped fund this program with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. The Johnson-Humrickhouse Museum is located in Historic Roscoe Village, a restored canal-era town, at 300 N. Whitewoman Street, Coshocton, OH. 43812. For more information contact the museum at 740-622-8710 or at jhmuseum@jhmuseum.org.

New Ohio. Find It Here. Travel Guide App

Unlocks Inspiration Statewide

Download the app or order the free printed guide at Ohio.org

TourismOhio unveiled an all-new Official Ohio Travel Guide and Spring/Summer Ohio Calendar of Events app. With rich visuals and easy navigation, the app makes gathering travel ideas convenient and fun. In addition to the app, visitors also may request a printed guide and calendar or view digital editions of the publications at Ohio.org.

“The continued evolution of the Official Ohio Travel Guide app is one more way we are inspiring potential visitors to connect with the people who mean the most to them through distinct travel experiences,” said Mary Cusick, director of TourismOhio. “The app and publications embody the Ohio. Find It Here. brand by revealing exciting, new opportunities for emotional connections with family and friends. The travel planning tools also share the passions of Ohio artisans, creators and experience makers with potential visitors.”

Official Ohio Travel Guide by TourismOhio App

The Official Ohio Travel Guide by TourismOhio app includes stories about surprising travel opportunities across the state and expert information from Ohioans on where to play, dine, shop and stay. Users can search or browse by region, things to do or events and festivals to build the perfect itinerary for an Ohio getaway. Additionally, the app includes the more than 750 festivals and events from the 2017 Spring/Summer Ohio Calendar of Events.

2017 Ohio Travel Guide

Developed with a magazine-like format, the 2017 Ohio Travel Guide includes feature-length stories, large photos and interviews with Ohioans who are creating some of the best experiences in culinary, retail, arts and more. The guide also features in-depth sections for each of Ohio’s five regions.

Ohio Calendar of Events

The 2017 Spring/Summer Ohio Calendar of Events includes more than 750 festival and events occurring between March 1 and August 31, 2017. An index of events by category (Food, Fairs and Festivals, Arts and Cultural, etc.) is included for easy navigation and trip inspiration.

How to Order/Download

To download the free Official Ohio Travel Guide by TourismOhio app, visit the App Store (Apple) or Google Play Store (Android). Digital versions of both publications also can be found at Ohio.org. Print editions of the 2017 Ohio Travel Guide and Spring/Summer Ohio Calendar of Events can be requested free of charge by visiting Ohio.org or calling 1-800-BUCKEYE.

About TourismOhio

TourismOhio, operating within the state of Ohio’s Development Services Agency, works to position Ohio as a destination of choice to enrich lives through authentic travel experiences. The branding Ohio. Find It Here. supports Ohio’s $42 billion tourism industry. For more, visit Ohio.org.

Celebrate Arbor Day at the Great Ohio Planting Day at Mohican State Park

Park visitors encouraged to help plant a tree

LOUDONVILLE – Families are invited to celebrate Arbor Day by participating in the Keep Ohio Beautiful (KOB) annual Great Ohio Planting Day on Saturday, April 29, at 10 a.m. at Mohican State Park.

Columbia Gas of Ohio, The Davey Tree Expert Company, Mohican Lodge and Conference Center, Mohican Trails Club and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) are inviting the public to help ODNR staff and volunteers to beautify and enhance the Class A campground at Mohican State Park, which was recently impacted by the emerald ash borer. To improve the Class A campground, people will plant 108 new trees in honor of Arbor Day.

All necessary equipment and supplies will be provided at the event. Staff from sponsoring agencies will be assisting volunteers in digging holes and planting trees. In addition to tree plantings, the Arbor Day celebrations will include a hike and naturalist-led activities for participants of all ages at the park. The event will be held at the Class A campground of Mohican State Park, located at 3116 State Route 3 in Loudonville. Interested participants should register by calling 330-338-8328 or by emailing mmennett@keepohiobeautiful.org.

Funding and in-kind support for the project was awarded to KOB through Columbia Gas of Ohio’s Columbia Cares Community Engagement Program, The Davey Tree Expert Company, Mohican Lodge and Conference Center, Mohican Trails Club and ODNR. Coffee and doughnuts will be available during registration, compliments of the Mohican Trail Club. After the trees have been planted, lunch will be provided by the Mohican Lodge and Conference Center.

ODNR ensures a wise balance between the use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.

Sauder Village Opening May 2 for 2017 Season

Archbold – Sauder Village, Ohio’s largest living-history destination, will open on Tuesday, May 2 with a focus on farming, gardening and new themed activities throughout the year. The 41st Annual Quilt Show will also kick-off the season with a spectacular display of quilts in Founder’s Hall, a new vendor market, quilting demonstrations, workshops and more!

“A time-honored get-away in the Midwest, Sauder Village is ready to welcome guests of all ages back to the Historic Village for another season,” shared Jeanette Smith, Director of Sales & Marketing. “From students and teachers to families and friends … . we offer guests of all ages the opportunity to have fun, learn something new and make happy memories together!”

From its very beginning, Sauder Village has been centered around sharing experiences rich in history, hospitality, creativity and fun. New this year, guests can enjoy themed experiences throughout the season with an increased emphasis on farming and gardening. To start the season, daily activities will encourage guests to “discover” the power of water, how to milk a goat, the power of wind, how to give a horse a bath and much more! Guests can view a calendar on the Sauder Village website to learn more about the special activities planned each day in the Historic Village.

From quilts, dolls and barbershop music to vintage base ball, apple butter and farm days … . the 2017 season is also filled with many unique special events. To start the season the 41st annual Quilt Show will take place from May 2 – 7 with hundreds of quilts on display in Founder’s Hall. This extraordinary event celebrates the rich tradition of quilting while showcasing the fine craftsmanship of quilters from throughout the Midwest. This year’s event includes great shopping at Threads of Tradition Quilt Shop as well as a new “Vendor Market” in the Museum Building that will include quilting supplies from a number of quilt shops! The show will also feature special exhibits, quilting demonstrations, quilt appraisals and workshops with guest artists Mary Kerr and Lenore Crawford. Other upcoming events include Spring on the Farm on Saturday, May 13 and the popular Antique Car Gathering on Saturday, May 20.

Sauder Village offers plenty for guests to see and do while visiting historic homes, farms, gardens and community shops. Families can take a walk through time while exploring wigwams and a trading post at Natives & Newcomers and continue to the Pioneer Settlement Area to experience life in Ohio from 1830-1870 at the log school, church, barn, homes and gardens. Finally, guests can step into the 1920s at the Grime Homestead complete with telephone, radio and player piano. Throughout the Village guests can also marvel at craftsmen blending skill and creativity in glass, metals, fabric, wood and clay. Every day traditional and contemporary craftsmen not only demonstrate their trade but also offer hand-crafted items available for sale in places like the Spinning Shop, Pottery Shop, Weaving Shop, Glass Shop, Blacksmith Shop and Tiffin River Woodworks.

A ride on the horse-drawn carriage and a trip around the Village on the Erie Express Train are also popular activities. The Barn Restaurant offers a unique place to enjoy a home-style meal and guests can always find delicious treats to take home from Stella Leona Chocolates & Coffees and the Doughbox Bakery. For those looking to extend their stay, overnight accommodations and special packages are available at the Sauder Heritage Inn and the 87-site Sauder Village Campground.

Historic Sauder Village is open this spring Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m.–5 p.m. and Sunday from noon-4 p.m. The Village is closed on Mondays, except holidays and summer hours will begin after Memorial Day. Admission is $17 for adults, $11 for students (6-16) and free for members and children 5 and under. Again this year, children 16 and under are free every Sunday this season! Sauder Village Memberships offer many valuable benefits and are available for only $50 for a Single, $75 for a Couple or $85 for a Family/Grandparent Membership.

For more details about planning a memorable Sauder Village get-away call 800-590-9755, visit the Sauder Village website at www.saudervillage.org, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

Officer Joshua Shields.
http://aimmedianetwork.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/48/2017/04/web1_thumbnail_IMG_20170321_163621352_BURST00101.jpgOfficer Joshua Shields.

Staff Reports

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.