Hints of things to come in 2010

With the start of the New Year, everyone will be looking forward to what’s going to happen on the island this season. Indeed, there will be some changes. Here are some of the changes for 2010 as the New Year rings in. Three shops at Harbor Square will no longer be there. South Bass Bessie’s has moved to the mainland. Puddle Duck is closing down, and the Blue Cottage Gallery is moving to the airport terminal. Dan and Tamar Levine from Lovella are planning a small shop between themselves and Frosty Bar. The Put-in-Bay Resort and Conference Center Villas, now under construction, will be up and running. The Rechtenwalds and Bodenbenders are in the process of building accommodations on Erie St. between Catawba Ave. and the old post office. We’re also hearing rumors about a new bar and a new pizza shop on Catawba Ave. which already has several bars and a couple of pizza places. On Bayview Ave., work is underway on the new business Paul and Cindra Lipke-Benn will be opening at John and Sis Nissen’s old house behind Mossbacks. There are big plans in the works for a motorcycle “Rally on the Rock”13 in June, something Lee Miller would have never believed possible on Put-in-Bay. Tim Niese has been working on this project for several months, and things are progressing nicely. Islanders and visitors will also be enjoying a newly extended Miller ferry which will accommodate more vehicles and passengers. Down at the public docks, there are some changes being made. Mayor Berry has decided to put the Village’s A and C docks under the management of the police department. They will also be in charge of the public rest rooms in the park. Work should also be beginning on the Monument. It’s important the repair work there is completed in time for the Monument’s 100th anniversary. So here’s to 2010! Stay tuned for further developments.

Saying farewell to 2009

We found 2009 filled with some terrific island events for all ages. Our hats go off to those who made these events so successful: The Put-in-Bay Arts Council Twilight Music Concerts, The Put-in-Bay Yacht Club’s Battle of Peach Point, The Lake Erie Islands Historical Society’s annual North Bass trip, the Barstool Auction on Middle Bass, the Adirondack chair auction on South Bass Island, the Miller Boat Line 5K Run, the Community Choir Performance, the events over Historic Weekend, the Chalk Walk, the Wine Festival, the Oktoberfest, the Vintner Cup old- fashion baseball games, the Lake Erie Islands Historical Society’s fund raiser Auction, the Soup Nazi’s visit to The Goat, and the Pirate Fest among others. This year will also be remembered for the opening of the new Lonz Marina, the construction of a water tower on Middle Bass, the Boardwalk’s flag ceremony, the opening of Hooligan’s Irish Pub, the opening of the Put-in-Bay Winery at the Doller House, the opening of the new tiki bar, Mist, at Mr. Ed’s, the arrival of Jet Express IV, the expansion of the Village wastewater treatment plant, the failure of the Port Authority levy and the shake up at the island airport, the remodelling at the school, and the closing of the Monument for repairs. If we’ve forgotten something, please forgive us. We know 2010 will bring even more events and interesting things to the islands. So, as we finish off December 2009 in style and head into a new year, we’re certain 2010 will be filled with many more surprises, happenings and events.

New preliminary Lake Erie Coastal Erosion Area maps to be released by ODNR in January

The ODNR has announced that property owners along Ohio’s Lake Erie coast, including those on the islands, will receive letters from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources after the first of the year identifying if their property is preliminarily located within a coastal erosion area. The letters will initiate a 120-day comment period for an updated set of coastal erosion maps originally released in 1998. Under Ohio’s Coastal Management rules, ODNR is required to measure coastal recession rates along the state’s Lake Erie shore. Land areas predicted to erode within a 30-year period, if additional approved erosion control measures are not completed, are included in designated coastal erosion areas. Ohio law defines a coastal erosion area as beginning at the water’s edge and extending landward a specific distance based upon the rate of recession along that stretch of bluff, bank or beach ridge. All 1998 Coastal Erosion Area designations and maps will be in effect and enforced for construction and property sale purposes until the 2010 maps are finalized. The 2010 maps are expected to be finalized in early 2011. Property owners considering a construction project along Ohio’s coast or selling littoral property may visit the ODNR Office of Coastal Management’s website at www.ohiodnr.com/coastal or call (419) 626-7980 to learn more. Staff will assist landowners in determining if a property is within a 1998 designated coastal erosion area. The Office of Coastal Management can also guide property owners through the permitting process and advise about Ohio’s Residential Property Disclosure law. Littoral property owners, municipalities, counties and townships that have questions about the 2010 preliminary Coastal Erosion Area maps can visit the ODNR Division of Geological Survey’s website at www. ohiodnr.com/geosurvey or call (614) 265-6595 for more information. The ODNR is developing fact sheets and a website dedicated to the 2010 Coastal Erosion Area program. Additionally, eight public hearings to present the preliminary 2010 Coastal Erosion Area maps are being scheduled across Ohio’s Lake Erie coast. These meetings will be announced in early January when the preliminary coastal erosion area designations are released.

Mini-Moss on the Rocks

We enjoyed talking with the Snake Lady, Kristin Stanford, at the Black Swamp Conservancy Potluck the other night at the South Bass Island Lighthouse. She was reminiscing about some of the unusual things that had happened to her during her ten years of saving the Lake Erie watersnake. We all decided her tale would make either a wonderful book, or a TV sitcom. Did you get your 2010-2011 pass for the tunnel between Catawba Island and Put-in-Bay yet? Peter Huston had them for sale at the Holiday Bazaar. Natalie Ontko Price (PIBHS Class of 1994) is heading to Stuttgart, Germany, to live. Her husband Stephen is in the Air Force. It should be fun for Natalie who lived in Germany several years ago and speaks German. Natalie’s sister, Christie Ontko, had a party for the Price family at her home on the mainland to send them off in style. Andrea Gatewood tells us she won $3500 worth of prizes in an Ellen Degeneres contest. Andrea got all kinds of gifts, everything from cosmetics to sporting goods, plus a $2,000 watch. We read a wonderful article in Fall 2009 Inland Seas, the quarterly journal of the Great Lakes Historical Society, about Captain Alfred Parker written by John Borman. What a great job Sue Thwaite and her crew from The Butler Did It did catering the Community Holiday Dinner in the school gym on Sunday evening, Dec. 13th. The Italian dinner buffet was absolutely wonderful. Valerie Mettler awoke to an early morning phone call from son Staff Sgt. Alan Mettler (PIBHS Class of 1999) on December 8. He urged her to hurry to the TV and turn on the Today Show. Alan was at Camp Eggers in Kabul, Afghanistan and the Today Show was doing a live feed with Al Roker and Matt Lauer from the dining hall. Valerie saw Alan, on the phone with her in real time. If you’d like to log on and see the clip with Alan, you can go to http://today. msnbc.msn.com/id/26184891/vp/34324592#34324683. It is the clip “Al Roker talks to soldiers.” Alan is on the far left in the back waving and on a cell phone talking to his mother. Alan is the PSO (personal security officer) of Lt. Gen. William Caldwell IV, who leads the NATO training mission in Afghanistan. Alan is in charge of his personal safety wherever he goes. Dairy Air Bob passed his annual check ride with the FAA in December and is ready for the busy winter flying season. He has arranged with Maria and Rob from the Black Squirrel B&B to schedule flights for Dairy Air. If you are unable to reach him on his cell phone, 419-341-1305, you can call Maria at 440-289-6579 for reservations. Bob is charging $45 per person each way between Put-in-Bay and Port Clinton. Speaking of the airport, Dave Washtock will be available Monday through Friday from Noon to 3 p.m. at the airport to handle the freight deliveries. After the first few days, he realized there are many people who exclusively use their cell phone and don’t have a local “285” number. If you are expecting a package, let Dave know what your phone number is so he can contact you. It also is extremely helpful if anyone sending a package to you from the mainland has your name and phone number on it. That windstorm between December 9th and 11th, was interesting. There were sustained steady winds in excess of 30 knots from the west southwest for more than 36 hours. At one point, the water level dropped 36 inches below chart datum. Billy Market says he stops running the ferries when the water level is ten inches below chart datum. With temperatures in the teens, it didn’t take long for the docks at the State Park and the Lime Kiln to ice over. The beautiful formations of ice formed on the uprights and posts were spectacular. Paul Ladd wants to let everyone know he will be running charter service to the mainland in January if there’s open water. That’s a “big if” the way it looks now! Mary Ann Market tells us in lieu of Christmas cards this season, a donation was made to the William E. Market Community Foundation which comes back to the community.

North Bass Ice Party – Jan. 30th

It is that time of the year, time to start thinking ice party! North Bass residents are looking at holding an ice party off of North Bass Jan. 30th, starting at 12:30 p.m. with a wind/ snow date of Feb. 6th. They will have hotdogs, but ask that everyone bring either a can of Bean and Bacon soup or Chicken Noodle as well as whatever it is you intend to drink. How- ever if anyone would like to bring a side dish, appetizer or snacks it would be greatly appreciated. There will also be a contest for the best decorated helmet and vehicle, your choice of theme. Whoever wins will receive a prize of some sorts. There is also talk about holding a snowmobile or 4-wheeler race, put this is still in the planning stages so watch for updates as things unfold. And please do plan on bringing a few bucks because they intend to raffle off one of Kerry’s beautiful hand made drift wood baskets filled with goodies as a fund raiser for the North Bass Church. This is a family event and is open to all of our friends and neighbors across the lake. Can’t wait and hope to see you all there, after all a visit to North Bass is always a great way to while away the day.

Kelleys Island News

By Leslie Korenko

Winter officially came to the island in December. The first ice on puddles appeared on Dec. 4 and the first snow on Dec. 7 when almost an inch of snow drifted down to cover the ground. It was short lived however. The snow was back on December 19 and looks like it is staying along with some really cold temperatures. Cold weather and winds played havoc with the ferry schedule. Ice covered docks and low water suspended travel for a couple of days and frozen spray covered the shore rocks.


Winter house check forms are available online at www.KelleysIsland.us (click on Forms). The website may be updated to include Reservation forms and sections for the Safety Services. The Police Dept. is very conscientious about checking houses advising owners of unusual damage and activity. Barb Shadle was appointed to fill the vacant Board of Education seat. Remember, Griffing is only flying from Port Clinton now and the ticket price is $47 one way.


The KI Historical Assoc. received a grant for $1318 for their museum building and reports they finally received their Use & Occupancy certificate. Looks like the building will be open next year. An individual membership is just $15. If you are not a member, you missed the last newsletter that contained another installment in the Wm. S. Webb letters from the Civil War era and a history of the Island jail.


Council is on recess until spring. David Lambros was reappointed as Village Solicitor. The village may exchange some old vehicles for a ‘97 Chevy Trail Blazer, made available through Sugar Ridge Recycling. The Airport Layout Plan is still not approved by the FAA. The Mayor expressed the Village’s frustration with having to pay for resurfacing while the FAA mandated purchases related to the N/S runway even though they recommend it be abandoned. The EMTs completed trauma training and Sharon is looking for volunteers to take the EMT course. The more volunteers we have, the lighter the load for each EMT. Contact the Village office if you are interested in taking this free class, either now or in the spring. The Water Dept. may be in financial crises and overtime and purchases are being reviewed. The Get-Away Subdivision plat was approved for filing. The Village may be applying for grants to purchase tasers.


The PTA has some unique items available for the winter that can be purchased for last minute gifts for birthdays, anniversaries, Valentine’s, Easter, etc. Some of the items include tire gauges, folding screwdriver sets, coffee mugs, jewelry, kid toys, ice cream dish & spoon, as well as Panther fan wear. We will be selling food, Panther fan wear and basketball player pins at all home games! The pins were donated by Becky Kowalski. You can also call PTA President Kelly Mohn for items. Our monthly meetings are the first Thursday of the month at 3:15 in the Multi-Purpose Room of the school. The next is scheduled for January 7. Look for 4-H to start in February.

Happy New Year from All of Us at the PIB Senior Center

There are so many ways to celebrate the New Year. So many goals set and resolutions made. Our wish for you this New Year is to live each day to it’s fullest and to have a year filled with lots of love and laughter! The Senior Center will be open Monday through Friday with activities scheduled daily. If you’d like, you can stop on by anytime of the day, read a good book in our sitting area, work on a puzzle, play some board games, watch movies, play cards, or just hang out with friends. You are always welcome, so come and visit our beautiful Senior Center. Enjoy and Have Fun! Don’t Forget – All Seniors are invited to join us at Tipper’s on Thursdays at 12 noon for lunch. This is always a good time, something you won’t want to miss. Transportation is available if you’d rather not drive. No problem, just call Candace at the Center. Home Delivered Meals are also available for you or someone you know who would rather stay at home. Arrangements can be made in advance on a weekly basis or monthly if you’d like. If you run into any difficult situations or problems at home this winter, please do not hesitate to call the Senior Center. We will be happy to help you out with any assistance needed.

Senior Center Weekly Activities

9 am – Strength Training
10 am – Coffee Social & Pastries
10 – 11 am Blood Pressure Checks by EMS
1 pm – Puzzles & Games
9 am – Aquamotion
1 PM – Knitting Club
1:30 PM – Book Club (1/12th)
7 p.m. – Bridge
9 am – Strength Training
1 p.m. – Card Party & Games
7 PM – Guys Poker Night
12 Noon – Open Invite to ALL SENIORS LUNCH @ TIPPERS (1/7th, 1/14th, & 1/28th)
11:30am – American Legion Lunch & Meeting (1/21st)
60+ CLINIC (1/28th)
9 am – Strength Training
1 PM – Mah Jongg
Please Note: Now Available – Home Delivered Meals
***If you are interested in having lunch delivered to you on Thursdays or delivered to someone special to you, please contact Candace Pucci at 419-285- 5501 and arrangements will be made.*** This is really a nice idea, especially during the winter months!

Island Diary December 2009

Tues., Dec. 1st – The wind chill at the Lime Kiln Dock when the first Miller ferry left for Catawba was in the high 20 degrees.
Wed., Dec. 2nd – Mike Catey, the chef at the Skyway, learns he picked enough horse race winners in an Internet game to win $16,000. He was one happy camper to say the least.
Thurs., Dec. 3rd – Put-in-Bay School Principal Steve Poe has meetings on the mainland all day and then coaches the girls’ basketball team game on the mainland that evening.
Fri., Dec. 4th – The staff at Put-in-Bay School enjoys their Christmas party at the home of Principal Steve and Dawn Poe. About 5 a.m. the temp hits 32 degrees for the first time this season.
Sat., Dec. 5th – Islanders attend Ken Turvey’s funeral. We see the first snowflakes of the season. Temps are below freezing for a 24-hour period.
Sun. Dec. 6th – The French Club holds a brunch for about 55 customers at the Senior Center.
Mon. Dec. 7th – Put-in-Bay Village Council and the Putin- Bay Planning Commission meet in Council Chambers at the Town Hall. The heat is not working and the first light snow of the season is falling outside.
Tues., Dec. 8th – Joe Byrnes is out with his mother and sister delivering fruit baskets to seniors. Jane Market and daughter Caiti celebrate their birthdays (Jane’s the 8th and Caiti’s the 11th) with dinner at the Skyway.
Wed., Dec. 9th – There’s only one ferry in the morning. Winds from the west-southwest increase considerably during the afternoon and the water in the Bay starts falling. Monument Superintendent Blanca Alvarez Stransky hosts a Christmas party at her home at the Monument. After dinner at the Ramsbottoms, Rosi and Don Stephens return home to find their driveway completely blocked by a downed tree.
Thurs., Dec. 10th – Winds from the west-southwest blow at more than 30 knots the entire day. There are no ferries. Ice coats the Lime Kiln dock. Temperatures are in the mid-teens. Elizabeth Heineman is getting things ready at Tony’s for the Christmas Bazaar.
Fri., Dec. 11th – The Mackinac Island basketball teams are flown over to the island because there are no ferries. It’s a special birthday for Mike Byrnes.
Sat., Dec. 12th – The Christmas Bazaar is going on at Tony’s and the Town Hall.
Sun., Dec. 13th – Several people put wreaths on the graves of the veterans at Maple Leaf Cemetery as part of the Wreaths Across America program. The Community Holiday Dinner is catered by The Butler Did It at the school gym.
Mon. Dec. 14th – Lisa Brohl celebrates her 50th at the Skyway. Louis Heineman enjoyed watching the crew at the Lime Kiln Dock as they dealt with a freight truck that ran out of fuel while the ferry was being loaded. The last ferry to the mainland was delayed more than a half hour.
Tues., Dec. 15th – The Lake Erie Chapter of the Black Swamp Conservancy potluck takes place at the South Bass Island Lighthouse.
Wed., Dec. 16th – The Ladies Tea and Cookie Exchange takes place at the Skyway. If you were out driving in a golf cart, you had to be chilled to the bone.
Thurs., Dec. 17th – There’s skim ice in the Bay. Candy Pucci, Mary Lou Ramsbottom, Maisie Cox, Annie Parker, Jean Burgess and Al Ruchala judged the Christmas lights on the island. A young man on Middle Bass was a cause of concern when he threatened to kill himself.
Fri., Dec. 18th – With above freezing temps, it was a fairly pleasant day at Put-in-Bay. The little bit of ice in the Bay melts away. The Paul Ladd family left the island for a Florida vacation over the holiday break. Island Resorts has its annual Christmas party at the Winterbar at the Park Hotel.
Sat., Dec. 19th – Bob Schmidt was on the island for the day. The kids who made cookies with Mrs. Claus at the Skyway sure had fun. Barb and Doug Mehling had an afternoon holiday party at their lake front home. There were many tasty treats to enjoy. Sometime during Saturday night, the Gemstone Mining cart at the entrance to Perry’s Cave somehow crashes into a red van and does extensive damage.
Sun., Dec. 20th – Frieda Baer invites guests to her home for a winter solstice dinner. Among the delicious fare is an absolutely wonderful walleye dish. Ask her for the recipe!
Mon., Dec. 21st – PIB postmaster JR Domer was slammed between 8 and 9 a.m. as people came in to mail letters and packages. We’ve never seen the lobby so crowded with customers waiting in line. There’s a thin coat of snow everywhere and it makes for slippery driving.
Tues., Dec. 22nd – Alyssa Rose, Linda Ostrander and Steph Thompson were making the rounds on the island passing out gift baskets from the Boardwalk.
Wed, Dec. 23rd – Todd Blumensaadt’s crew from Putin- Bay Investments is working on water and sewer lines at the new little subdivision on Put-in-Bay Rd. across from the Island Club.
Thurs., Dec. 24th – Amy Thwaite (PIBHS Class of 1995) arrives on Put-in-Bay from California to spend the holidays with her family.
Fri., Dec. 25th – A cute show on the Internet is the 2009 Village dockmasters from A & C docks dressed as elves doing a dance on JibJab. There’s one mid-day ferry trip to the mainland and back.
Sat. Dec. 26th – Posted on the Internet is an extended schedule for Miller Boat Line which goes through the New Year’s weekend and into January.
Sun., Dec. 27th – The Cellar Cache´ is celebrating the beginning of its 27th season with a second day of sales. Snow whitens island roads by dinner time.
Mon., Dec. 28th – With winds from the southwest at 30 miles per hour and temperatures in the low 20s, Billy Market announces on Facebook there will be no ferry service today. It wasn’t for another ten minutes that the same info was available on the Miller Boat Line web site. Sounds like you’d better have Facebook on your computer.
Tues., Dec. 29th – Shortly after 9 a.m., the Miller ferry rounds Gibraltar Island breaking ice in the Bay and heads to its winter berth at Miller’s downtown dock. By 9:25, fireworks are being set off at the dock to signal the end of the 2009 season. Julene Market hosts a holiday party at her new home near the Lime Kiln.
Wed., Dec. 30th – About a dozen people woke up this morning realizing they had cars stuck on the island they wanted to be on the mainland for the winter.
Thurs., Dec. 31st – Islanders Larry and Tammy Knaser are in Southern California sightseeing and planning to attend the Rose Bowl parade and game in Pasadena.

This and That 2

The day the ferryboats stopped running, Dec. 29th, Jake Dunfee from Rescue Marine charted his boat, Charlotte Marie, to bring over thirteen Amish builders and four loads of equipment from their trucks from Marblehead to Put-in-Bay. The group couldn’t get over the day before, but had to be on the island to start work on the villas at the Put-in- Bay Resort and Conference Center. If you are an ice fisherman and keep your minnow car(s) at the Crew’s Nest docks behind Wharfside, please take heed. You need to have your minnow car labeled with a name and phone number and register it with the Crew’s Nest office by calling (419) 285-3645. Melinda McCann Myers from the Crew’s Nest wants everyone to know they can keep minnow cars there, but the problem comes in the spring, when some of the owners don’t pull their minnow cars out. The Crew’s Nest has to pull them out at their time and expense. Please call today and make sure your car is labeled and registered. Thanks!