Outside media coverage of Mill Creek MetroParks

Mill Creek MetroParks seeks public input

Mill Creek MetroParks is soliciting public comment for an upcoming drive improvement project.

The proposed project involves improvements to the southern section of East Newport Drive totaling 0.86-miles (Shields Road to Kreider’s entrance) and a portion of Valley Drive totaling 0.38-miles (East Park Drive to the suspension bridge), both of which are located within Mill Creek Park.

The proposed project activities include pavement planing, roadway resurfacing, shoulder restoration, and the reapplication of pavement markings.

The project is scheduled to begin construction in the summer of 2020 with an estimated construction cost of approximately $297,418.

Any comments the public may have regarding the environmental and/or the proposed project may be submitted by Jan. 17 to Mill Creek MetroParks, c/o. Nick Derico, Natural Resources Steward, 7574 Columbiana-Canfield Road, Canfield, OH 44406.

Full article at vindy.com

Mill Creek MetroParks seeks public input on projects

Mill Creek MetroParks is seeking public comment about the social, environmental and economic impacts of proposed road and bridge projects.

One project involves improvements to the southern section of East Newport Drive totaling 0.86 miles (Shields Road to Kreider’s Entrance) and a portion of Valley Drive totaling 0.38 miles (East Park Drive to the Suspension Bridge), both of which are located in Mill Creek Park. The proposed project activities include pavement planing, roadway resurfacing, shoulder restoration and the reapplication of pavement markings.

The project is scheduled to begin construction in summer 2020 with an estimated cost of  $297,418. Some of the project funding ($123,316) will be provided by the ODOT — Park District Improvement Fund (2020-2021 Biennium). The MetroParks will provide the remaining $174,102 in match funds, as well as contribute professional engineering, contract management and construction project management/inspection services.

During construction, portions of both East Newport and Valley Drive will be closed to all pedestrian, bicycle and vehicular traffic. A detour route will be provided for vehicular traffic.

The second project involves improvements to the Old Orchard Bridge on Chestnut Hill Drive. Proposed project activities consist of furnishing labor, materials and equipment necessary to resurface the asphalt concrete pavement over the bridge, seal/waterproof the bridge decking, repair/improve the concrete walks and timber railings, perform stone masonry repair (tuck-pointing), cleaning and all other tasks incidental to completion of this project.

The project is scheduled to begin construction in summer 2020 with an estimated cost of $200,000. Eighty percent ($160,000) of the project’s funding will be provided by ODOT through Surface Transportation Program funds. The MetroParks will provide the remaining 20 percent ($40,000) in match funds, as well as contribute professional engineering, contract management and construction project management/inspection services.

This project is expected to be complete in about 60 days. During construction, the Old Orchard Bridge will be closed to all pedestrian, bicycle and vehicle traffic for a maximum of 45 days. A detour route will be provided for vehicular traffic.

For comments or questions, contact Nick Derico, Natural Resources steward, at 330-702-3000, ext. 136, or nderico@millcreekmetroparks.org.

Full article at mahoningmatters.com

Hometown Hero hopes to spark smiles with Mill Creek Park Christmas display

Our Hometown Hero this week is all about making you smile.

Sharmon Lesnak has been a volunteer for Mill Creek MetroParks for six years.

This year, she’s turned the Davis Center into a “Magical Woods” as part of its winter celebration.

Lesnak and her volunteers began planning back in July and were able to put the entire display together in just three days, right before Thanksgiving.

“To have something for the adults and the kids. We need to smile. So if I get people to smile, that makes me feel good,” Lesnak said.

Lesnak doesn’t work alone though — she has her volunteers to help out.

“It takes a lot of staff and a lot of volunteers to do what you see here. So every little bit of help does make a difference,” said Jaime Yohman, community engagement director for Mill Creek MetroParks.

Lesnak, now retired, has a 40 year background in retail displays. She’s worked for places like Strouss, Kaufmann’s and Macy’s. Plus, she’s very inventive.

“Even some of the roses that were from out of the rose garden were used, the pine cones. I have always enjoyed the fact of being creative and this has given me another outlet since I’ve retired to be able to still do it,” Lesnak said.

While you’re at the Davis Center, don’t forget to stop downstairs to see dozens of more trees, put together by different organizations like the Leonard Kirtz School, Second Harvest Food Bank and Goodwill Industries.

It’s volunteers like Lesnak who make Christmas magic possible.

Full article at wytv.com

Mill Creek Park’s annual holiday event kicks off this weekend

Saturday kicked off the Olde Fashioned Christmas at Lanterman’s Mill in Mill Creek Park.

The annual holiday event brings out thousands of people to shop for hand-made gifts, listen to music and see how crafts are made by local artists.

It also gives people the chance to see the mill in action.

“That’s one of the staples of this area is that we have so many historical things still in operation. We do have the mill running today, so that’s an added feature of the event. People can actually see the mill working,” said Recreation Activities Facilitator Brittany Haynes.

Christmas at the Mill will be open again Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Full article at wkbn.com

Mill Creek Metro Park’s Winter Celebration holds opening

Mill Creek Metro Park’s annual Winter Celebration held its opening day Saturday.

The event was at the Fellows Riverside Gardens in Youngstown. It is also sponsored by WKBN 27 First News.

This is Mill Creek Metro Park’s nineteenth annual Winter Celebration. The theme this year is Magical Woods.

“Which is where the fairies, the gnomes and the trolls live, and as you can see, we have a lovely tree house where they’re residing as well,” said Lynn Zocolo, an educator from Mill Creek Metro Park.

They also have an enchanted forest where visitors can find mythical creatures.

“So we’re talking about dragons, unicorns, of course you know unicorns are real because we know what they look like, right? We have phoenix, the bird that rises from the ashes and my favorite, Big Foot,” Zocolo said.

The creations found at Mill Creek Metro Park did not magically appear.

“Thanks to some wonderful volunteers working diligently since July, they have put together the magic and the mystic of what you may find in the Magical Woods,” Zocolo said.

She says this is their way of giving back to the community.

“And thanking them for their support throughout the year, for Fellows Riverside Garden, for Mill Creek Metro Parks, because without the people of the Valley, we couldn’t do it,” Zocolo said.

If you want to experience the Magical Woods, the doors open Tuesday through Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Every Saturday until December 28, the Gardens will be open until 7 p.m. for guests.

Full article at wkbn.com

Annual Olde Fashioned Christmas offers taste of past

When it comes to doing her part to get people more in the holiday spirit, Kathy Adams doesn’t mind getting her hands dirty.

“I do one show a year; it’s my hobby,” the Austintown woman said about highlighting her abilities with clay and other materials that are hallmarks of her artistic tools of the trade.

Adams, who works at Akron Children’s Hospital in Boardman, spent part of Saturday afternoon displaying her talents with wet clay and a few sharp tools as she crafted and carefully shaped a few snowmen to sell. Her efforts also were part of the annual Olde Fashioned Christmas at Lanterman’s Mill gathering in and next to the mill on Canfield Road.

Fourteen artisans and other vendors are the main attraction for the event, which continues from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. today at the mill. Sponsoring the free, family-oriented and holiday-themed gathering is 21- WFMJ / WBCB-TV.

For Adams, who also studied for more than two years at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, the Olde Fashioned Christmas event truly is a family affair, because helping her sell hand-painted and glazed turtles, cats, cardinals and other items she made are her daughter, Sara Sinchak, and granddaughter, Nina Sinchak, 10.

“The ornaments are baked (in a kiln), hand-painted, glitzed and shellacked, and ribbons are tied,” said Sara, who added that she assists her mother mainly with the business and organizational aspects.

“I sold a lot of them,” an excited Nina said, referring to a variety of stenciled and cut-out tree ornaments she crafted, a few of which were shaped like Snoopy, a cardinal and Forky, a spork character from this year’s popular film “Toy Story 4.”

Attendees who are looking for Christmas gifts or stocking stuffers likely won’t return home disappointed or empty-handed. Merchandise for sale includes scented soap bowls, wooden kitchenware products, ornaments made from beeswax, fleece dog tug toys, picture frames, spool-and-bobbin night lights, pottery items and dog bandannas.

For the sentimental at heart, local artist and historian Bob Barko Jr. has for sale numerous prints of Idora Park and other iconic places that capture much of Youngstown’s history. In addition, selling his prints and notecards is C. Scott Lanz, a longtime nature photographer who in 2005 started his photography business, LanzScape Photography Ltd.

Each year, Lanz publishes and sells the Mill Creek MetroParks calendar. A portion of the proceeds benefits Fellow Riverside Gardens.

Providing a bit of a personal touch to the holiday season is Kathy Bowman of Austintown, who is a regular fixture at the Olde Fashioned Christmas festivities.

“I use a mallet on wet leather, then place and stamp a letter,” Bowman explained about her ability to design then personalize leather bracelets, many of which contain children’s names.

She also had on her table a few delicate and web-like dream-catcher items that are symbolic of many Native Americans’ beliefs about and interpretations of dreams.

“The good dreams go through the net, but the bad dreams get caught in the web and are destroyed in the morning by the morning light,” she said about the belief.

Many attendees Saturday also spent considerable time outside of the mill, where they were treated to chestnuts being roasted over an open fire, courtesy of Ray Novotny, a park volunteer and former naturalist. Also heating things up a bit in the 40-degree weather was Howard Mincone, a comedian and magician whose audience enjoyed a display of pantomimes, juggling and fire-eating acts.

Event organizers also are encouraging people to bring new hats, scarves and mittens that will be placed on a “giving tree” and distributed to children in need this winter. Monetary donations also are being accepted.

Providing the entertainment is “One String Short,” an acoustic group that performed several traditional Christmas carols.

Full article at vindy.com

Local volunteers decorate dozens of Christmas trees at Davis Center

Dozens of volunteers were decorating Christmas trees on Monday for the annual “Tree Walk” inside the Davis Center at Fellows Riverside Gardens in Mill Creek Park.

This is part of the facility’s “Winter Celebration, which starts on Saturday.

More than 50 local non-profit groups–including the Leonard Kirtz School, Second Harvest Food Bank, Goodwill Industries and Ursuline High School–will have trees there.

This year’s theme at the Davis Center is “The Magical Woods.”

View full article at wkbn.com

FELLOWS RIVERSIDE GARDENS HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE

WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Boulder climbing approved behind Bears Den Cabin in Mill Creek Park

People who like to climb boulders can now do it legally in an area of Mill Creek Park.

The park’s board of commissioners unanimously approved boulder climbing around an outcrop of boulders behind Bears Den Cabin.

It’s the only section of the park where boulder climbing will be allowed.

The idea was proposed by the Ohio Climbers Coalition in September.

A study was done to determine if any endangered plants would be harmed.

When the study came back negative, the decision was made to approve boulder climbing.

Full article at wkbn.com

Section of MetroParks Bikeway to be closed for a week

Starting Wednesday, a 2-mile section of the Mill Creek MetroParks Bikeway will be closed for a pavement repair and asphalt resurfacing project.

The section of the bikeway in Canfield Township between Western Reserve Road and state Route 446 will close for approximately one week.

The project will address poor pavement conditions by repairing cracks, planing and excavating uneven pavement, and installing a new course of asphalt pavement.

Access to the bikeway from Western Reserve Road, Leffingwell Road, state Route 446 and the MetroParks Farm Trailhead will be prohibited for the entire duration of the project. The work schedule may be adjusted due to bad weather, which could cause delays to the start or completion of the project.

Full article at mahoningmatters.com