Mantua Matters
September 2008

This edition of Mantua Matters marks the 10th Anniversary of this little newspaper. There have been a lot of changes in our community in the past ten years, some good, some bad, but for those of us still here, it remains the best place to live, because it’s home.

This edition of MM covers the months of September, October and November, plus some past events and happenings. Please enjoy!!


There is a lot happening in this 1.4 square mile! Local banks and Neighborhood Development Services recently met with local businesses to discuss ways to fund expansion and renovation projects. There have been on-going discussions with the County with regard to the selling of our water and sewer services.

We lost several long-time friends in the Cutlips, young Tommy Barnard and Frank Goodell. They will be sadly missed.

Before we know it, summer will be over. There are so many people to thank for all their efforts. All the volunteers who helped with the Mini Park, to our Service Department and Village Administrator, Ed Trego, for all their had work on the water main break on Main Street. I would especially like to thank Charles (Charlie) English for the generous use of the Depot for the Rotary sponsored Farmers Market. And to the Rotary for sponsoring the Market, what a fun way to spend a Saturday morning and what a boost for the Village of Mantua.

Thanks also to Chris Craycroft, Portage County Parks Director, Councilman Marty Hura and Charlie English for their help and involvement in our new Municipal Parking Lot located behind McDonalds. I would also like to thank Charlie for all his hard work and hours unselfishly given on the Buchert Park trail leg and our soon-to-be observation deck, that will be built, as he so aptly stated, by our “signature pedestrian bridge” with the help of Eagle Scout Brock Benner. This will provide a wonderful view both up and down the river.

Thanks also to Jeff and Edie Benner and Eric Hummel for the improved look to our notorious “hole”. What a welcome difference it has made.

Soap Box Derby racer Mallory Lorence of Streeter Road took 5th place in the World Derby race. What a terrific way to represent Mantua, congratulations and thank you Mallory!

Thank you too, to Diane Hura who volunteers her time to write and edit Mantua Matters, we really appreciate all you do.

Recently, several of us attempted to gather information on the history of our town and our historic buildings. I must admit it was eye opening to find that there were so few people who knew our history.

So one night, this October, many of us along with the Downtown Mantua Revitalization Committee will be bringing our Village back to it’s historic past life. If you would like to participate, please contact me at Village Hall , 330-274-8776, and stay tuned for more details. I am sure this will prove to be an evening you will not want to miss.

And lastly, your Village Council has graciously asked me to inform the community that they, your Council, are the ones who pass ordinances, including those that involve employee layoffs.

Enjoy the rest of your summer.

Donna Hawkins, Mayor


It’s me again! I wanted to be sure everyone is aware that this is an important election for more reasons than just who you want to be President. The Village has submitted Ordinance 2008-6 to the Board of Elections to be placed on the ballot in November. This Ordinance, which repeals the one-half percent income tax credit in order to help the Village’s General Fund after loss of revenues, is for your approval or rejection.

I also want to mention the importance of supporting our own local businesses. With the price of fuel, why drive to the big cities to shop? You can save an hour of your day, and you can save 20 miles worth of gas by staying right in town and buying locally. More and more I see small local businesses going belly up. We have fantastic stores in town and the prices are actually quite reasonable because our local businesses don’t have the large overhead costs that the big stores have, such as advertising, large employee benefit packages, etc. I know you can’t buy everything in town, but community support will help us grow!

While working on our 2009 Operating Budget, we were made aware that there would be increases in utility costs such as electricity and natural gas. Fall is a wonderful time to start preparing for winter heating expense! Here are a few tips that you may already be aware of, but if not, give them a try!

  1. Audit yourself

    A home energy audit is a way to inventory your home’s energy use, where energy is lost and where it can be saved. Go from room to room and try to find at least one thing in each room that could change your energy use. You can do an energy audit yourself or get a pro. Some utilities also offer home and business energy audits for free.

  2. Reduce your use

    Replace your light bulbs with lower watt bulbs, or compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs). Portage County recyclers will accept them for disposal at their facility.

    Turn off lights and other devices when they are not needed. Many people like to leave on a porch light. Can you try a lower watt bulb there?

    “Wall warts”, those clunky AC adaptors on many power cables, also pull current. Your best bet is a power strip that can be turned off at night.

    Clothes driers gobble up a lot of power, so line drying can be a great energy saver. Is there room in your basement for a clothesline?

    Can your food be cooked in a toaster oven, microwave or electric skillet instead of using the 220 power? Some people grill out all winter long!

  3. Buy wise

    When looking for new appliances, seek out the most energy-efficient models. Most new appliances come with a yellow Energy Guide label, which, like mileage ratings on cars, shows its consumption in terms of kWh per year. Also look for Energy Star rated products.

  4. Homemade Juice

    You think making your own bread at home feels good? There’s nothing quite like the feeling of making your own electricity from the sun, wind or water. Installing a home alternative energy system is becoming more and more cost effective as technology improves and assistance programs spread.

    Unfortunately, Mantua does not get a lot of sun to provide all the energy needed for a typical home, but you might be able to power the garage or help with some of your electricity needs with a few solar panels.

  5. Prepare for winter!

    Use ceiling, or whole-house fans to move air throughout the house. Blocking sunlight during hot hours of the day can help lower your cooling load. During cold months, heat rises, so reverse your fan direction to move heat around the room at the slowest speed.

    If your house uses electricity for water heating, wrapping your water tank in an insulating blanket can save on power. Go to Mantua Hardware and pick up those insulating wraps for your pipes. They are inexpensive and do make a difference. Can you drop the temperature on your water heater to 120 degrees?

    It is too soon to plasticize your windows, but mark your calendar for a nice weekend in October or early November to start on that. Creating a barrier between the windows and the plastic sheeting makes a huge difference, let alone getting rid of drafts. My house is very old, and replacing the windows was costly, but actually paid for itself in the first 2 years.

    Invest about $30.00 for a programmable thermostat. Here, in the office, Sue and I turn the heat down as we leave every evening as part of the “walking out” ritual. It only takes about 10 minutes to warm up the office the next morning.

    Is your attic insulated? Basements get cold too, and insulating the basement ceiling can help, too!

    That is a great start for you. I am sure you have many other ideas that help you save the household money. Until next time, keep saving any way you can.

Jenny August
Clerk-Treasurer, Mantua Village



Mantua Village once again will be participating in the annual events along the beautiful Cuyahoga River. We look forward to this Saturday every year, as we join with you and your families, in celebrating along and on our River.

This Riverscape will be held during the Potato Festival in September. This is a venue sponsored by the Upper Cuyahoga River Watershed Task Force, Mantua Village, along with many other State, County and area agencies who come together with activities that are fun, educational, and interactive for all.

Look for these activities which include displays, demonstrations on the River, scenic river canoe trips, kid’s casting contests and much more on Saturday, September 6th, from noon to 4:00 pm.


The monthly brush pick-up is underway and will continue on the 2nd Monday of each month unless a holiday. The last brush pickup this year will be on Tuesday, October 14th. Remember, wood chips are available to all Village residents. They can be picked up at the Service Department at 4880 E. High St. beyond the river or contact us at 330-274-8188 for delivery.

Buchert Park Trail

The final phase of the Buchert Park Trail from the Cuyahoga River foot bridge to the park was completed recently. Many hours of donated labor and materials along with a large State ODNR grant have made this possible.

Mantaline Corporation donated an easement that permitted this project to be constructed. Our Village is blessed to have such a caring partner in the Village. Many thanks to all, but especially to Charlie English for his numerous hours of planning assistance, excavating, grading, grubbing and equipment use. The Village Service Department team also spent many hours on this project.

An observation deck is the final phase of this project which is to be completed soon by local area Boy Scouts for their Eagle Badge project.

Fall Leaf Pickup

The leaves will soon be falling. Remember to get your clear leaf bags, free of charge, from the Village Police Department, Village Service Garage or the Fire Station. Fill them with leaves only (no brush, bushes, etc.) and place them on the tree lawn. The Service Department will pick them up.

The Village is proud of the fact that over 95% of the bagged leaves from past years have been recycled into nurseries and other area agricultural uses. This approach has saved the Village quite a sum of money. The key to the program’s success is the effort put forth by you, the resident. The disposal of yard waste, like solid waste disposal is quite an expensive alternative to a little elbow grease.

No Fall Clean UP

The Village of Mantua will NOT be having a Fall clean-up this year.

Snow Removal

We all remember how burdened we were with heavy snowfall in past winters. The snow caused great concern for the safety of our children.

Many areas of the Village had sidewalks that were impassable - blocked by built-up plowed snow. Our citizens, then, and especially our children, were forced to make the unsafe decision to walk in the street.

this winter, as you clean your driveways and lots, remember to keep the sidewalks clear. Don’t push snow into the roadway, and be especially careful to keep traffic corners clear for visibility.

must all work together to keep our sidewalks clear and snow piles low for safety. This is a community problem that needs our collective attention

Ed Trego
Village Administrator


are always seeking new hands to help beautify Mantua Village. Meetings are the first Monday of each month at 12 noon in a club member’s home. We enjoy lunch, an interesting program and do-it-yourself projects. Some of our members are Master Gardeners and can answer most gardening questions. For more information, call President, Carol Fenrich at 330-274-2343.

We are having a HUGE yard sale on September 6th from 9 am to 5 pm at the home of member Jean Thomas, 10766 Park Street. Besides decorative and household items, there will be a plant table, bakery table, children’s table, books, pillows and lots of miscellaneous, all at very reasonable prices.

Emma Lefrink
Mantua Garden Club


The Downtown Revitalization Committee and the Village of Mantua are working together to bring some excitement to our commercial district and showcase our beautiful historic buildings. Village resident, Laura Landreth, is heading-up the committee planning a family-friendly “Ghost Walk” for the evening of Saturday, October 18th.

The event will take you back in time and bring downtown Mantua back to life through multi-sensory experiences at key sites including the former train depot, the old livery and mill and the original Mantua School (do you know where that is?). Tickets and maps ($5 per person) will be sold in advance at the Potato Festival, Middlefield Bank, and Advanced Rehabilitation and Health Specialists.

Share your Mantua Memories - people, places, events you remember - which will add to the colorful stories of our town. Return your Mantua Memories to Advanced Rehab or Village Hall by September 15, 2008.

Want to get more involved? You can play a part in the evenings’ festivities! Contact Laura Landreth at 330-274-0855 or for details!

Get your Mantua Souvenirs

Available at Middlefield Bank in Mantua or Advanced Rehabilitation and Health Specialists.

Mantua-Past & Present” DVD $20 contribution

Downtown Mantua Revitalization T-Shirt $15 contribution

Old & New” Main Street Postcards $1 contribution/3 cards

Items can be shipped for an additional $2 each. Visit for an order form…..or send your name, address, phone number, email address, and check payable to: Downtown Mantua Revitalization Corporation to PO Box 111, Mantua, OH 44255.

If you have questions or comments about DMRC, contact Edie Benner at 330-274-2747 or email to


Did you stop by the Downtown Mantua Revitalization Committee (DMRC) booth at the Ox Roast this year? Pat and Jim Oster designed, built, stocked, and staffed the booth, expertly coordinating several community volunteers.

Visitors watched the “Mantua Past and Present” slide show and looked at conceptual drawings of what downtown Mantua might look like after streetscape improvements. Guests were asked to share Mantua Memories and could ‘purchase’ the slide show on DVD, T-shirts, or postcards for a small donation. Many who stopped by offered to help with large and small projects in the future.

The booth will make a repeat appearance the weekend after Labor Day at the Potato Festival. Be sure to stop and find out what else is in the works and remember to look for us in the Parade too!

The DMRC also has a tent at the Rotary’s Country Market held outside the old train Depot on the 2nd and 4th Saturday through October. Pick-up DMRC information while you browse locally produced goods at the market!

DMRC Officers and Board members meet every 2 weeks and are doing a lot of “behind the scenes” planning, letter writing, telephoning and much more. If you’d like to help, contact President Edie Benner at 330-274-2747 or

Neighborhood Development Services Helps Businesses and Residents.

When the DMRC discovered a low-cost source of funds for owners of commercial and residential property, they spread the word! Representatives from Neighborhood Development Services (NDS) in Ravenna recently spoke to a group of 30+ Mantua property owners about the services they provide.

Businesses in need of funds to remodel, add-on, or purchase equipment in an effort to stay in business or to extend hours or hire more employees, may qualify for low-interest loans through NDS. The funds come from various federal, state, and local sources and are made available to spur economic development.

Residents benefit from NDS services including foreclosure prevention, home-buyer seminars, and housing rehabilitation loans.

An NDS loan to Jeff Benner and Eric Hummel of B&H Rentals, helped fund construction of the new block wall on the East side of Main Street. The original building there burned to the ground in 1985; remaining boards along the neighboring building held turn-of-the-century masonry in place. The new divider, designed by Hal Stamm, meets the new energy code and structural standards, to preserve the existing building and prepare for future construction on the vacant site.

Neighborhood Development Services Info
Phone: 330-297-6400


Everyone who has a phone, presents a target to con artists whose preferred method of operation is the telephone.

Some common phone-related scams include:

Callers offer contest prizes or fabulous vacation package deals, but the victim must provide credit card information.

Pay-per-call phone numbers, known as 900 numbers, offer contest prizes, bogus products, or suspect services, such as repairing a poor credit rating. Unsuspecting customers find charges from $2 to $50 and more on their monthly telephone bills. Scam victims are often led to a 900 number by toll-free 800 numbers or mailings.

Con artists “steal” phone card numbers, often posing as a telephone company investigator (checking a system failure) or law enforcement officer (with an emergency collect call about a family member that must be charged to a long distance carrier Credit card) or government official (investigating for the FCC).

Fraudulent charity pleas often have a name that sounds similar to that of a reputable, well-known organization such as the Salvation League (instead of the Salvation Army), or the American Cancer Association (instead of the American Cancer Society). They sell tickets to a circus that’s a fund raiser for disabled children, to the police officer’s ball or other events. They may ask for contributions to help victims of the latest natural disaster, a hurricane, earthquake, or war. Reputable charities are always willing to send a financial statement or annual report, or people can contact the National Charities Information Bureau.

Consumers can call a new toll-free help line, 800-876-7060, to report frauds and locate local resources. The National Consumers League developed and operates the help line, with funding from Citicorp, Mastercard, MCA Communications Corp and VISA U.S.A. All information reported to the help line is forwarded to a telemarketing fraud database maintained by the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection to assist state and local law enforcement and to collect case evidence needed to launch investigations.

The Direct Marketing Association (DMA), which represents more than 3,600 companies engaged in all aspects of direct marketing, has developed voluntary guidelines for the industry. DMA also operates a Telephone Preference Service (TPS) to help consumers remove their names from national telephone sales call lists by sending name, full address, and telephone number including area code to: Telephone Preference Service, Direct Market Association, PO Box 9014, Farmingdale, NY 11735.


DO NOT give checking or savings account information to anyone over the phone.

DO NOT give credit card numbers over the phone unless you know the organization is reputable.

DO NOT assume an organization is legitimate because of impressive looking brochures, testimonials, or official sounding names.

BE WARY of high pressure sales tactics, such as prizes, awards, and deals that are only available if you “act right away”.

REQUEST written information from an organization soliciting you over the phone and have someone you trust review it before you act.

steal your life savings. If you think the call is a scam, get as much information as you can such as address, phone number, organization name and person’s name.


Harry Buchert, Chief of Police


This report covers the months of May, June and July, 2008

Total Cases178
Traffic/Parking Cites135
Criminal Arrests5
Calls to Dispatch1,373
Total Mileage9,389
Mutual Aid Calls74
Officer Hours Worked2,419
Dispatch Hours Worked2,241
Citizen/Motorist Assists66
Open Doors/Windows22
Suspicious Persons/Vehicles45
House Checks216
Bar Checks58
Water/Sewer Plant Checks183
Reservoir Checks188
Lift Station Checks875


September 29th 7:00 - 8:30 pm
MSFD Community Room

Informed and engaged citizens are an asset to their communities. This will be the first Fifth Monday meeting and citizens of all ages are welcome to share ideas, suggestions and questions.

An invitation will be extended to all local and county candidates who will appear on the November ballot. Any questions? Please contact Dawn Pechman at 330-274-7187.


When businesses, individuals, non-profits and Governments work together, communities thrive! A goal of this online information and news site for the Crestwood area is to list all businesses, services, clubs, civic organizations, churches, groups, etc. To add your business or organization; provide name, address, telephone number, email and website (if available) and contact name by email to or 330-274-7187. This site is to provide a ‘one-stop’ online location for information and news in the Crestwood area, and can also act as a way for people outside our district to peer into the Crestwood School District area to see what is happening and/or available.

If you have a house, apartment, or building to buy, lease or rent, forward a quick description, phone number and email address, if available. This way, anyone looking for property can see what is available. Email information to or call 330-274-7187.


Q: Will revitalization increase my taxes?
A: The DMRC is trying to raise funds through private donations. There has not been any mention of increasing taxes.

Q: Will it increase water/sewer bills?
A: The DMRC is a 501c3 corporation that does not set water and sewer rates.

Q: Due to the state of the economy, isn’t this the worst time to try to revitalize?
A: Not really. It’s actually a good time to plan and prepare for the future.

Q: What good will it do to have a “pretty” town with no businesses?
A: Would you rather open a business in a town that looks nice and has been revitalized, or a town that looks old and tired.

Q: What has been done so far?
A: Board & Officers have been meeting twice each month for over 2 years to discuss available options for funding (grants, corporate donations, private donations, fundraisers). If you are interested in helping DMRC achieve the $75,000 goal to complete the planning phase, tax-deductible donations will be appreciated.

We had a booth at the Ox Roast and hope you will visit our booth at the Potato Festival.

We try to keep the public informed about our progress through the Mantua Shalersville Chamber of Commerce website and articles such as this.

Thirty-three businesses and property owners recently attended a Neighborhood Development Services meeting planned by DMRC & the Mayor’s office where they learned about available low-cost loans & grants. If you weren’t there and you own property or a business, please contact us for information.

EG & G Company has created conceptual drawings of how our town could look. Watch for these in the Main Street storefront windows or inside local businesses.

We look forward to hearing from you. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any suggestions, concerns or would like to volunteer, at 330-274-2747 or

Edie Benner


It’s time to elect a new President. All Village residents vote at the Village Park Lodge. Polls are open from 6:30 am until 7:00 pm.

Remember to bring your photo ID. Please exercise your right to vote on November 4th. Your vote does count!


As the Village prepares for the Annual Mantua Potato Festival, we, as residents of the Village, should take note of a few safety tips that can help you during this weekend.

Always lock your home and vehicle, and if not at home, leave a few lights on around the house, along with the TV or radio. This will give the effect there is someone home.

Park in designated areas of the Village, preferably lighted areas.

Don’t park on the roadway or on the sidewalks. This WILL result in citations to the owners.

Do not leave personal property out for the taking.

Be aware of when and where roadways will be closed off to the public for Festival activities, such as the Potato Stomp & Parade.

Don’t let anyone you don’t know into your home to use the phone, bathroom or whatever they may request. Call the Police and they will provide whatever assistance is required.

Don’t let small children attend the Festival by themselves and your older children should check in with you periodically.


Crestwood Academic Achievement

The annual Ohio Local Report Card results were announced statewide on Monday, August 25. According to an advanced report, Crestwood will again be rated “effective”, the second highest designation. We met 23 of 30 academic and attendance indicators for the 2nd consecutive year.

Crestwood Hall of Fame Inductees

We would like to congratulate the following inductees to the Hall of Fame:

We invite the attendance of friends and family of all of our inductees to the ceremony. Dr. Guegold would also like to invite his former band students to attend.

These individuals will be inducted on Friday, September 19, 2008, during our home football game.

Possible New High School

The Board is looking for 8-10 community members who would like to play an active role in analyzing our options for a possible new high school. Steering committee members would be involved in dialoguing with the community, studying cost options, evaluating locations, gathering and giving input on issues such as renovation vs. replacement and many other related topics. They would also advise the Board and Administration regarding the timing and amount of a possible bond issue designed to raise the 50% local matching funds that would guarantee Crestwood about $13million in state funds.

Advertise in Crestwood Comments

Crestwood Comments is now accepting advertising in an effort to underwrite costs and increase the amount of available space. If you know of potential advertisers, they can contact Trudy Capel at 330-359-3416 or impact for additional information.

Crestwood Comments is the only publication mailed directly to every household in our school district and is the most-read source of information about Crestwood Schools according to past surveys.

For school information visit the Superintendent’s Blog at


The Board of Trustees along with Village Council and Ed Trego are working on finalizing “Rules and Regulations” for the Mantua Village Hillside Cemetery. Hopefully, they will be approved and in place within the next few months.

The Cemetery Board would like to thank all those involved, especially Councilman Hura for their time, efforts and meeting attendance during the last 2 years that we have been working on this project.

Please remember to remove any vases, planters, etc., before cold weather sets in. This is a big help in the spring time to both the Service Department and Board members who prepare the cemetery for the Memorial Day Service. Thanks for your cooperation.

Cookie Vanek
Mantua Cemetery Board


Due to the passing of Sy Thompson, webmaster for our website, it is temporarily unavailable. We are gathering information from other sources regarding hosting the site and hope it will be back up soon.

In the meantime, here is a schedule for the rest of the year’s meetings and events. Please note, November is also a Chamber election month. Please consider helping out by filling an officer’s position. Thanks.

Wednesday, Sept 17, 2008- 7:30 am
Mantua-Shalersville Fire Station
Bob Stehli-Science of growing chestnuts. Laura Ruhi-Business Mentoring

Monday, Sept 22, 2008-6 to 9 pm - Special Event: Steak Fry at Main Street Place Patio & Gardens
10783 Main St., Mantua Village. More info to be announced.

Wednesday, Oct 15, 2008 - 7:30 am
Mantua-Shalersville Fire Station
Duane Porter, Portage County Health Department

Wednesday, Nov 19,2008 7:30 am
Mantua-Shalersville Fire Station

Chamber Election of Officers
Open meeting - Come and make your 2009 Program suggestions.

December meetings and events to be announced.

Becky Newell
Mantua-Shalersville Area
Chamber of Commerce


Country Market

Rotary Club of Mantua’s Country Market has been hugely successful this summer at its new location at English Realty, the historic train depot across from McDonald’s restaurant.

The Market will be open the 2nd and 4th Saturday in September and October, from 8:30 am until noon. Come get fresh produce, pumpkins, mums, stained glass, homemade honey, jams, soaps, maple syrup & candy, homemade donuts, beautiful floral arrangements and many hand-crafted items that are knitted, crocheted, quilted, beaded or tie-dyed. The variety of items is tantalizing and of outstanding quality, all reasonably priced. Customers have enjoyed seeing their friends and neighbors, so come and be part of this community happening.

Rotary Booth at Potato Festival - At the Rotary booth, we will be serving delicious potato and cheese pierogis, salt potatoes, soda pop and lemonade. All profits go to support Rotary projects such as purchasing dictionaries and to fund scholarships for deserving seniors. See you at the festival for great food and fun!

Dictionary Project - This fall Rotary Club of Mantua is purchasing a dictionary for each and every third grade student at Crestwood schools for their very own. This is an annual project of the club.

International Exchange Student

Rotary is proud to welcome our exchange student, Natsumi, from Japan. She is living with a Rotary family and has already become active in Crestwood’s band. We are delighted to have her.

Pearl Austin, Pres.
Rotary Club of Mantua


By the time you read this, the Hike and Bike Trail extension from the footbridge over the Cuyahoga river to the Village Park should be completed.

Brian Rodgers of C.T. Consultants submitted the grant application and original design. This project was made possible through the generosity of Mantaline and Charles English, plus the help of many others, including Norm Erickson, Lakeside Sand and Gravel, Bill Sontag Stamm Contracting, the Village Service Department, Steve Rolson of ODNR and Chris Craycroft of the Portage Park District.

When the entire project is complete it will include an observation deck overlooking the river. The deck will be part of an Eagle Scout project for Brock Benner and the members of Scout Troop # 575

Please stop down and take a look. This project is the result of a great deal of time, work and energy and we are grateful to all those involved.

So ends another edition of Mantua Matters. I hope you have enjoyed it. If you have anything you would like to see in future issues, or any news about our town, please let me know. Contact me at 330-274-8737 or Village Hall at 330-274-8776.

Bye for now, see you in December!

Diane Hura, Editor