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Staff Reports

Irish Song and Dance Tells a Story of Courage in Celtic Nights: Oceans of Hope at the Davidson February 23

Through music, song, and dance, Celtic Nights captures the essence of Irish history in the brand-new production direct from Ireland, “Oceans of Hope – The Epic Journeys of Our Ancestors.” Audiences will be taken on a journey through the struggles and dreams of people fighting for liberty, freedom, dignity, and above all, family, as they move across the oceans in hopes of a better and brighter future.

CAPA presents Celtic Nights: Oceans of Hope at the Davidson Theatre (77 S. High St.) on Saturday, February 23, at 8 pm. Tickets are $25-$40 and can be purchased in-person at the CAPA Ticket Center (39 E. State St.), online at www.capa.com, or by phone at (614) 469-0939 or (800) 745-3000.

Song, music, and dance will take audiences on an epic, two-hour journey of joy, sadness, happiness, and laughter as this new production tells the story of nations moving across oceans to find lives free from hunger, war, persecution, and famine.



Powell, OH – The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium will offer three free admission deals for guests. The first will be extended to all guests on January 21, 2019 in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day; the second offer will be valid for all guests on February 18, 2019 in observance of Presidents’ Day; and the third admission offer is for furloughed federal employees affected by the partial government shutdown.

The Zoo will continue its tradition of offering free admission to all guests in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday, January 21, 2019, as well as on Presidents’ Day, the federal holiday originally created in honor of the nation’s first president, George Washington, on Monday, February 18, 2019. Each of these promotions will be valid on those days during Zoo operating hours (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.)

Additionally, the Zoo will offer free admission to furloughed federal employees and their immediate family members for as long as the government is shut down. Federal employees must present their federal ID or badge at the ticket booth for free admission.

The standard parking fees ($10 per vehicle; free for Zoo members) will still apply during these promotions.

“In addition to honoring the incredible life and work of Martin Luther King Jr., observing Presidents’ Day—which, coincidentally, was signed into law by President Rutherford B. Hayes, who was born in Delaware, Ohio not far from the Columbus Zoo—as well as paying our respect to current federal employees for their service to the public, we feel it is important to offer these promotions to our wonderful community members, the support from whom we are extremely grateful,” said Columbus Zoo President and CEO Tom Stalf.

Open 363 days a year, the Columbus Zoo has plenty to experience even in the colder winter months. Many animals are still visible from the comfort of heated, indoor shelters, including Discovery Reef, Manatee Coast, Congo Expedition, the reptile building, the habitats at Vanishing Giants and the Naomi Coyle Dempsey Quest for Enlightenment Interpretive Center in the Asia Quest region and the nocturnal building in the Australia and the Islands region. Additionally, many animals are also fans of the colder temperatures, such as those living in the North America region like the polar bears and the cougars, and are particularly playful during the winter months. For more information, visit ColumbusZoo.org.

About the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium

Home to more than 10,000 animals representing over 600 species from around the globe, the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium leads and inspires by connecting people and wildlife. The Zoo complex is a recreational and education destination that includes the 22-acre Zoombezi Bay water park and 18-hole Safari Golf Course. The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium also manages The Wilds, a 10,000-acre conservation center and safari park located in southeastern Ohio. The Zoo is a regional attraction with global impact; annually contributing more than $4 million of privately raised funds to support conservation projects worldwide. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, the Columbus Zoo has earned Charity Navigator¹s prestigious 4-star rating.

Rediscovering America: A Quiz on the Civil Rights Movement

By Patrick Maloney


Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which is January 21 this year, became a public holiday in 1983, after President Ronald Reagan signed the legislation establishing it.

The quiz below, from the Ashbrook Center at Ashland University in Ohio, provides an opportunity for you to test your knowledge of the Reverend King and the modern civil rights movement, which took shape in the 1950s and 1960s when a confluence of social and economic factors enabled political change.

1. In what well-known sermon did the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. suggest “withdrawing economic support” from businesses to obtain fair treatment?

A. The Death of Evil Upon the Seashore

B. I’ve Been to the Mountaintop

C. I See the Promised Land

D. The Drum Major Instinct

2. In 1966, President Lyndon Johnson held a White House conference on civil rights. Which African-American civil rights activist was the conference’s honorary chairman?

A. A. Philip Randolph

B. Ralph Abernathy

C. W.E.B. Du Bois

D. Huey Newton

3. Who was convicted of assassinating Martin Luther King Jr.?

A. Sirhan Sirhan

B. James Earl Ray

C. Thomas Hagan

D. Lee Harvey Oswald

4.Which of the following civil rights activists was not assassinated?

A. Malcolm X

B. Rosa Parks

C. Medgar Evers

D. Fred Hampton

5. Martin Luther King Jr. was the author of which book or books?

A. Strength to Love

B. Why We Can’t Wait

C. The Measure of a Man

D. All of the above

6. In 1954, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously in Brown v. Board of Education that segregation in public schools was illegal. Appeals of cases from what five U.S. locations were combined into one case by the justices?

A. Kansas, Mississippi, North Carolina, Texas and Washington, D.C.

B. Alabama, Kansas, Ohio, South Carolina and Virginia

C. Delaware, Kansas, South Carolina, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

D. Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, North Carolina and Virginia

7. What future Supreme Court justice argued Brown v. Board of Education before the Supreme Court?

A. Sandra Day O’Connor

B. Thurgood Marshall

C. Ruth Bader Ginsburg

D. Warren Burger

8. After refusing to give up her bus seat to a white passenger, civil rights activist Rosa Parks inspired African-Americans to boycott public buses for more than a year in what city?

A. Selma, Alabama

B. Birmingham, Alabama

C. Tuscaloosa, Alabama

D. Montgomery, Alabama

9. Time magazine said the landmark Civil Rights Act of 1964 bore which senator’s “handiwork more than anyone else’s.”

A. Clair Engle of California

B. Hubert Humphrey of Minnesota

C. Everett Dirksen of Illinois

D. Mike Mansfield of Montana

10. Which musician did not perform at the 1963 March on Washington (for Jobs and Freedom), where Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech?

A. Stevie Wonder

B. Joan Baez

C. Bob Dylan

D. Marian Anderson

Answers: 1-C, 2-A, 3-B, 4-B, 5-D, 6-C, 7-B, 8-D, 9-C, 10-A


Patrick Maloney is deputy director of the Ashbrook Center at Ashland University, Ashland, Ohio. He wrote this for InsideSources.com.

Public Open House for Westerville Chief of Police Joseph A. Morbitzer

The City of Westerville will host a public open house to recognize Chief Morbitzer’s nearly 33 years of dedicated service to the community of Westerville.

Morbitzer has been selected by Attorney General Dave Yost to be the next Superintendent of the Bureau of Criminal Investigation. Join us to celebrate his distinguished career as he retires from the Westerville Division of Police.

Friday, January 25

1-3 p.m.

Everal Barn at Heritage Park

60 N. Cleveland Ave.

Refreshments provided.


Main Street Delaware’s Feb. 1 First Friday to Feature Wedding-Themed Events

DELAWARE, OH – You’re invited to witness a wedding, participate in a free walking wedding expo, and even renew your own vows during Main Street Delaware’s Feb. 1 First Friday “Love is in the Air” celebration.

The wedding expo will include businesses throughout the downtown sharing samples and ideas for your upcoming wedding or other special event. It will run from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Feb. 1, with a list of participating businesses available that night at the Main Street Delaware office, 20 E. Winter St.

Then at 6:30 p.m., you’re invited to witness the wedding of Taylor Johnson and Marshall Lane, winners of Main Street Delaware’s Facebook contest. Couples were invited to post their love stories online, with Johnson sharing that she and Lane “fell in love for the first time in the streets of downtown Delaware, and in July of 2018 he proposed to me with a ring that was passed down from the owners of the original Delaware Hotel.”

The couple will be married by Delaware Mayor Carolyn Kay Riggle, who also will perform a free vow renewal ceremony at 7:30 p.m. open to all married couples.

“My favorite part of my job is officiating weddings,” Riggle says. “Everyone is always so happy, and I get to play a small part to bring two people who are in love together. It doesn’t get any better than that.”

Both events will be held at [gather], 53 N. Sandusky St., which features rentable event space for special occasions. Other businesses helping to provide a dream wedding for winning couple Johnson and Lane include the following. Collectively, these businesses have contributed more than $1,800 worth of goods and services for the couple’s special event, including:

Hair and makeup from 1820 Collective, Ltd.

Haircut and hot shave from The Upper Cut Barber Shop.

Free tuxedo rental from What The Tux.

Flower arrangements by Gibson The Florist.

Wedding photography by Periwinkle Photography.

Wedding venue decor from French Hen Farm.

Table and chair rental from Tri-Son Tents.

A gift card to Woodland Cigar Co.

Music by Christopher Lee Gherman.

Wedding cake for up to 20 friends and family from Fresh Start Cafe and Bakery.

A cheese tray for up to 20 friends and family from The Greater Gouda.

Periwinkle Photography also will be taking photos of other couples from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at [gather]. Cost is $10 per couple, with the best image emailed afterward. In addition, carriage rides will be available from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in front of the Strand Theatre, 28 E. Winter. The cost is $15 per couple, $10 per individual, and 10 and under are free.

The Feb. 1 First Friday is sponsored by COhatch and by Performance Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram of Delaware.

Learn more about these and other downtown events and volunteer opportunities at www.mainstreetdelaware.com or www.facebook.com/MainStreetDelaware.

About Main Street Delaware:

Main Street Delaware is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) member-supported organization that seeks to preserve and promote historic downtown Delaware. In addition to coordinating the First Friday celebrations and downtown Farmers’ Markets, Main Street Delaware oversees the holiday parade and more. Main Street Delaware is an accredited Ohio Main Street Community. For additional information, contact 740-362-6050 or director@mainstreetdelaware.com. Learn more at www.mainstreetdelaware.com or www.facebook.com/MainStreetDelaware.

Gen. Deborah Ashenhurst Named ODVS Director

COLUMBUS – A few days prior to being sworn in as Ohio Governor, Mike DeWine announced a bevy of candidates for appointment to his cabinet. Among those introduced on Jan. 10 was Deborah Ashenhurst, who served in the Ohio National Guard for 37 years and this week began her new assignment as Director of the Ohio Department of Veterans Services.

Maj. Gen. Ashenhurst (U.S. Army, retired) brings a wealth of military and private sector experience to the position as well as a developed connection to the veteran community. She has held assignments at all levels from company, battalion, brigade and Joint Force Headquarters.

She also is deeply familiar with operating at a state cabinet level, as she served for four years as the Adjutant General and commander of the State of Ohio. In that role, Ashenhurst commanded the 17,000 personnel of the Ohio Army and Air National Guard, Ohio Military reserve and Ohio Naval Militia.

“I am absolutely thrilled to serve our great veterans all across Ohio and do all I can to be a voice, and a listener, for our veteran community,” she said.

Director Ashenhurst succeeds Col. Chip Tansill, who served as ODVS Director from September 21, 2015 until Jan. 13, 2019 – his final day under former Gov. John Kasich.

Ms. Ashenhurst was sworn in Monday morning, thereby becoming the first female director, the fifth overall and the highest ranking leader of the department since its inception in 2008. Her predecessors are the late William J. Hartnett (2008-11), Thomas N. Moe (2011-13), Timothy C. Gorrell (2013-15) and Tansill (2015-19).

Ashenhurst began her career in 1978 when she enlisted in the Ohio National Guard. She was commissioned an engineer officer in 1980 through the Ohio Army National Guard’s Officer Candidate School.

During her military career, Gen. Ashenhurst received numerous awards and decorations, including the Army Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal (with one Silver and one Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster) and the Joint Service Commendation Medal.

She retired from the U.S. Army and the National Guard in October 2015. Her career culminated in service as a special assistant to the vice chief, National Guard Bureau in Washington, D.C.

Prior to her appointment as the adjutant general, she was a 25-year federal employee in various positions of increasing responsibility with the United States Property and Fiscal Office with the Ohio National Guard.

Following her retirement from the military, Gen. Ashenhurst served as the senior vice president, military strategy with R2 Associates. She also served as a commissioner on the Ohio Military Facilities Commission.

“I’m proud to announce that Maj. Gen. Deborah Ashenhurst has agreed to lead the Ohio Department of Veterans Services,” Gov. DeWine said. “The General will work tirelessly to ensure Ohio’s veterans will receive their benefits and services that they have earned. It is our goal for people to look to Ohio and say that this is a very veterans-friendly place.”

General Ashenhurst resides with her husband, Col. Jim Ashenhurst (U.S. Army, retired), in Hilliard, Ohio.

About ODVS: The Ohio Department of Veterans Services works to actively identify, connect with, and advocate for veterans and their families. Ohio law gives the department the responsibility to partner with all 88 county veteran service commissions and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, in order to “serve those who have served” by connecting Ohio veterans and their families to well-earned benefits and resources.

Recent statistics out of the VA indicate Ohio currently is home to nearly 800,000 former service members, ranking the state sixth nationally in terms of veteran population.

For more information on the Ohio Department of Veterans Services, go to OhioVets.gov.

PUCO reminds Ohioans of their choices as energy consumers

COLUMBUS, OHIO (Jan. 17, 2019) – For more than 100 years, energy in Ohio — electricity and natural gas — has been regulated by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO). The PUCO wants to remind Ohio consumers that there are options when deciding about the energy supply that best suits your home or business.

Prior to the ability to choose your energy supplier, rates and services provided by the electric and natural gas utilities were set and regulated by the PUCO. Now, and for the past decade, consumers have the option to shop from a PUCO-certified supplier for their electricity or natural gas. The PUCO plays an important role by ensuring that there is a fair, competitive market and by providing necessary information, tools and resources that Ohioans need to make educated choices.

The PUCO reminds consumers to be aware of a few important facts about energy choice in Ohio.

The local utility will continue to deliver your electricity or natural gas, respond to outages and maintain the poles, pipes and wires associated with the delivery of your energy.

The ability to shop for alternative suppliers of electricity and natural gas gives you greater variety of pricing options and gives you the freedom to pick the option that is best for your home or business.

When shopping make sure to read your current bill and contract to look for things like price-to-compare, usage, applicable termination fees and the contract’s expiration date.

The PUCO’s Energy Choice Ohio website has helpful tools available to assist your shopping experience at www.energychoice.ohio.gov. There you will find things like the Apples to Apples comparison charts, frequently asked questions and a form to request a speaker for your next group meeting. Additionally, new user-friendly and interactive electric choice switch rate dashboards are now available on the PUCO website. Dashboards for natural gas switch rates will arrive later this year.

For more information, please visit www.energychoice.ohio.gov or www.PUCO.ohio.gov, or call the PUCO Call Center at (800) 686-PUCO (7826).

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) is the sole agency charged with regulating public utility service. The role of the PUCO is to assure all residential, business and industrial consumers have access to adequate, safe and reliable utility services at fair prices while facilitating an environment that provides competitive choices. Consumers with utility-related questions or concerns can call the PUCO Call Center at (800) 686-PUCO (7826) and speak with a representative.


Staff Reports