Monday, April 22, 2013

cv board

Times Bulletin Editor

CONVOY - Members of the Crestview Board of Education heard two presentations Monday evening, including an update on the one-to-one computer program from Technology Coordinator Shane Leeth.
Leeth reported that the district is getting closer to a program that would match each student in grades 7-12 with a laptop or notebook computer.

There are many variables yet, and no decisions have been made. Leeth is meeting with tech representatives of other local school districts Tuesday to explore the idea of a consortium to get a better price.

"The point is, more than likely we will be involved in a one-on-one initiative next year for grades seven through twelve," stated Crestview Superintendent Mike Estes.

Leeth noted that this type of program would eliminate the need for three of the four computer labs in the high school. That equipment could then be transferred to the elementary grades.

The other presentation was from senior Tanner Skelton who toured Gettysburg, Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C. as a reward for his performance on an Americanism test. Skelton gave a power point presentation and took questions from the audience.

The board voted Monday night to accept the resignation of Linda McCann after 18 years as a teacher at Crestview, 19 years overall. New contracts were approved for Leeth, Lori Orsbon, Zachery Rosenbeck, and Becky Macki.

Certified contracts were awarded to Christine Albright, Kristy Bagley, Sarah Brenneman, Lindsay Ebbeskotte,  Christa Gasser, Colby Kuhn, Lindsey Martinez, Nehemiah Murphy, Hannah Phlipot, Steven Sealscott, James Lautzenheiser, Lindsey Newlove, Matt Perkins, Julie Schumm, Melissa Basinger, Jason Cross, Amy Roan, and Melissa Roop.

Classified contracts were approved for Jennifer Daugherty, Sandy Etzler, Janice Lichtensteiger, and Sara Owens.

Notice was also given that Owen Pugh is retiring and is seeking reemployment as a bus driver with Crestview for the 2013-14 school year. A public session will be held to consider local input at the May 20 board meeting. Action will be taken on the matter during the June board meeting.

May 6-10 was designated as Staff Appreciation Week.

Monday, April 15, 2013

VAN WERT - The Van Wert Business Expo is expanding this year. The event, which is slated for May 16, will be not only an event for businesses to reach out to other businesses, but also to share with the general public.
"We have tweaked it to kind of combine two events into one," explained Van Wert Area Chamber of Commerce President/CEO Susan Munroe. "The first event would be a business-to-business expo, where businesses will have the opportunity to reach out toward one another and network, as well as take part in a workshop together. Then with the second event, they will have the opportunity not only to reach out to other businesses, but to reach out to the public with the Taste of Van Wert County from 5-7 on the evening of May 16. So they'll be able to have the business-to-business time as well as be able to reach out to consumers."
One other big change this year for the expo is the location. The event will be held at the Van Wert Elks Lodge Banquet Hall. Munroe shared that she was listening to suggestions after last year's expo about shortening the hours for exhibitors and a different type of location.
“We’ve moved this event to a newer, more corporate venue," explained Munroe. "This facility is centrally located in Van Wert, air conditioned, has ample parking, and attendees can purchase beverages from 5-7 p.m. during the Expo and Taste of Van Wert County while browsing the business exhibits.”
The Business-to-Business Expo will be conducted from 3-5 p.m., again giving those participating vendors an opportunity to network with other exhibitors.
"More than 85 percent of those participating last year expressed that they generated their leads and/or sales by being at the Business-to-Business Expo last year," Munroe stated.
At 5 p.m. the doors will open to the public. There will be no admission charge, and visitors will be able to sample free appetizers and sweets from several local establishments and access the cash bar while browsing the business booths.
Munroe commented that exhibitors will have a chance to reach key customers, business executives, and management, along with the community at large. She went on to note that booth space is limited, so businesses considering taking part should register for the event as soon as possible. And promotion through various media will assure quality event traffic to get a look at each business. Exhibitors will also be featured in the event exhibitor guide.
“This event combines the best of both worlds,” she added.
Booth space includes free wi-fi, an exhibitor guide listing, a six-foot display with table cloth and skirting, and up to two box lunches. Chamber members can register to exhibit for $125. The non-member rate is $225. Food vendors may exhibit free in exchange for providing appetizers or desserts to visitors at the event. to reserve a space or to get more information, contact the chamber at (419) 238-4390 or email Businesses can also register on line at
Gold Sponsors for this event include the Kenn-Feld Group, K&L Ready Mix, Koorsen Fire & Security, Vantage Career Center, Van Wert Manor and the Van Wert Elks Lodge #1197.
The expo will be held Thursday, May 16 from 3-7 p.m. at Elks Lodge 1197 at 1 Elks Rd., just off Van Wert-Decatur Rd.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Ohio and Van Wert County's Agriculture Industry: By the Numbers

Times Bulletin Editor

In 1900, the population of Van Wert County was just over 30,000 people, and many of those had their livelihood tied up in the agriculture industry, either as farm owners or laborers. Since that time, the county's population has fallen to around 28,700 residents.
That change in population is mirrored by the number of farmers that it takes to produce a crop per acre. In 1900, the average size of a farm in the United States was 146 acres, and there were around seven million individual producing farms in the country.
Over the years with advancements in technology of equipment, the size of the average farm has grown, but the number of individual farms has dropped considerably. he latest estimates show 2.2 million farms in America while the average size of a farm has grown to 418 acres,
That trend has also been the case in Ohio. In 2000, the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) reported a total of 79,000 farms in the state. (For the purpose of the report, the ODA counts as a farm any place that produces annual sales of agricultural commodities of $1,000 or more.) After a little over one decade, the ODA reported the number of farms has fallen to 73,700. In just one year, the number of Ohio farms dropped by 600.
According to the 2007 Census of Agriculture, Van Wert County has 696 farms with an average size of 354 acres. That totals 246,497 tillable acres.
The dramatic increase in technology in the equipment being used everyday has allowed fewer people to produce crops on more land. Just as important, the technological advancements in herbicides and seeds have led to giant leaps forward in crop yields. Take a look at the changes in yields in some key crops for Van Wert County.

Crop         1960            1990             2011
Corn         68.0             121.0            134.7
Soybeans  24.5               39.0             46.8
Hay (tons) 1.84               3.30            3.90

Of course with yield number like these and the number of tillable acres in production within the state, Ohio continues to be a leader in the country in the production of not only the grain crops that the everyone immediately thinks of for this area, but also for a number of other areas including fruits and vegetables. For example, while Ohio farmers harvested 4.54 million acres of soybeans and 3.22 million acres of corn for grain,  other crops were a part of the agriculture picture in the Buckeye State. In 2011, the state produced 850,000 acres of winter wheat, 1.12 million acres of hay, and 38,000 acres of oats. Add to that 126,100 tons of tomatoes, 17,900 tons of cucumbers, 26,000 cwt. of strawberries, 426,000 cwt. of cabbage, 125,000 gallons of maple syrup, and 7.5 million tons of grapes, and you begin to see the diversity in Ohio agriculture.

The state is an important producer of much more than just soybeans. Ohio ranks high among all states in the production of many crops.

                                             Ohio                  Ohio                U.S. Leader
                                             2010                  2011                  2011
Corn (grain)                             8                        8                     Iowa
Corn (silage)                           14                       14                   Wisconsin
Oats                                        10                      8                      Wisconsin
Wheat                                     11                      12                    Kansas
Soybeans                                  6                       6                       Iowa
Hay (baled)                             20                      21                     South Dakota
Potatoes                                  25                      26                     Idaho
Tobacco                                   8                        8                     North Carolina

The rise in production and the higher grain prices over the past few years have also affected the value of farm land -- whether it is being worked or sold. The average value per acre of farmland and buildings in 2011 was $4,300. For cropland, the value was $4,400 per acre, and for pasture the value was $3,000 per acre. Each of these three rates was as high or higher than in the previous year.

The same holds true with cash rents. Van Wert County ranks third in the state with an average of $146 per acres cash rent received in 2011, an increase of $17 per acre from 2010 figures. Darke County remains tops in the state at $159 per acre in cash rent. Mercer County again ranks second with a $147 per acre figure.

At the same time that crop production in Ohio has been on the rise, the livestock side of the equation continues to lose ground. Approximately 50 years ago, there were around 2,250,000 head of cattle in Ohio. In 2011, the state's inventory had fallen to 1,230,000 head of cattle in the state. The low numbers are no surprise when it is learnd that cattle farmers have had to deal with double-digit percentage drops in beef prices over the past couple of years.

That same trend can be seen across the other livestock industries. Milk cow production decreased also in 2012. Milk cow inventory fell from 271,000 to 268,000 head across the state. Milk per cow figures dropped also from 19,446 to 19,187 pounds, and total milk production went from 5,270 million pounds to 5,142 million.

In Van Wert County in 2011, 9,536,000 bushels of corn for grain were produced, ranking the county 25th among Ohio's 88 counties. Soybean production placed Van Wert County ninth in the state with 5,610,000 bushels produced. Alfalfa hay in the county saw 3,100 tons produced, putting the county 58th in Ohio.

Crop production cash receipts from 2010 showed $40,587,000 received from corn and $55,014,000 in soybeans. Also $5,628,000 was recieved from wheat, $730,000 in oats and hay, and another $1,851,000 in other crops.

As far as livestock goes, Van Wert County showed a total of 28,000 hogs and pigs at the latest count (Dec. 1, 2010). That is the21st largest number of Ohio's counties. There were 3,200 milk cows in the county as of the beginning of 2012, making the county inventory 26th highest. Cattle and calves counted at 6,600, ranking 66th, and the 1,000 head of sheep in the county ranked Van Wert County 46th of the 88 counties.

Cash reciepts in the county were $11,161,000 for dairy and milk, $2,209,000 for cattle and calves, $7.970,000 for hogs and pigs, and $3,788,000 for poultry and other livestock.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

'A Christmas Story' lives!

Every year we are treated to a barrage of Christmas specials and movies, but the one that has become the most pervasive is “A Christmas Story.” This charming story of a little boy obsessed with getting a particular BB gun for Christmas gets extensive airplay. One channel decided a few years back to take this little-seen movie and run it for 24 hours continually on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, apparently in an attempt to make everyone sick of it. Fortunately, there are so many nuances to the story, especially if you grew up a few decades back, that sitting through part or all of 12 straight showing can be done. I still like the movie, but I don’t watch it anymore if I can help it. I’ll wait a couple of years, then it will be more special to see.
I remember when “It’s a Wonderful Life” was on at least once a night during December on one channel or another. Then, due to copyright issues, only NBC could play the flick on television, first once then twice a year. Now it’s a little more special to see on television. Of course, that all changed with the release of VHS, DVD, and Blu-ray versions, and probably somewhere on the Internet.
But the overexposure of “A Christmas Story” has not taken away my appreciation for it. And just because I don’t sit down and watch it does not mean that “A Christmas Story” will not find me. If you remember, the neighbors of the Parkers had a pack of hound dogs that steal away the cooked turkey from the household and force Ralphie and family to the Chinese restaurant for Christmas dinner.
On Christmas Eve, I hosted my side of the family for our get-together. I did not bake anything this year, so the others brought the cookies, fudge, muffins, etc. Of course we couldn’t eat it all, so when the family left for their own homes, they left a healthy amount of goodies for the kids and I on platters on the dining room table. Actually there was so much, maybe I should say it was an unhealthy amount. Anyway, you get the picture.
In the evening we have a Christmas Eve Candlelight Service at church, so everything was left on the table, the mess from wrapping paper was still not quite cleaned up by the tree, and we trekked off for church. My three dogs were safely tucked away in the room where they stay when no one is home. At this point I should mention that the door to that room does not always latch securely, but it has never been a real problem.
When I arrived back at the house after church, I opened the door to go into the house. I was greeted by my three dogs, who were obviously quite happy. As it turned out, the mutts were probably on a sugar high. I looked at the dining room table to find… nothing. Well, not exactly nothing. There were several empty platters, some napkins and paper cups, and a couple of forks. That was it. The cookies, fudge, and other goodies that had been piled and stacked only two hours before had been reduced to a few crumbs that must have been too small to bother to lick up. That wasn’t the only disaster though, as what goes in eventually comes out, and there were those messes to be dealt with as well. The dogs were then shut up in the room, and I began the clean-up. It may not have been a whole turkey that I lost, but it was just as valuable in my book.
The kicker was that my family and I agreed to meet up with some others for Christmas dinner on the 25th. Where did we eat Christmas dinner? One of the only places that was open within five counties — a Chinese restaurant.
So, if you look out your window next week and see a man with a broken leg lamp tucked under one arm, a BB gun slung over the other shoulder, and a bar of Lifebuoy sticking out of his mouth, you’ll know who it is.

Monday, October 01, 2012

VAN WERT - The Van Wert Cougar football team is ready for a dose of Homecoming inspiration. Hoping to help out is the man who was the first Cougar football player to earn recognition as an all-Ohio player.
Frank Hoffman was honored after his senior season at VWHS in 1949 as an all-state player. This year, Hoffman will be honored as the Grand Marshal of this year's Homecoming Parade. He will also beat dinner with the team on Thursday and be introduced to the crowd on Friday night.
Football was much different back in the late 1940s when Hoffman suited up.
"Tremendously different," observed Hoffman. "You've got hard helmets now! And face masks, we didn't have face masks!"
Although he received recognition for his play as an offensive guard and a defensive tackle, when Hoffman entered high school he did not try out for the team.

"I didn't start my freshman year," Hoffman remembered. "The coach was my algebra teacher. About the middle of the season, he talked me into going out. I'd never seen a game before. Well, we had a little idea of what football was all about from grade school and stuff like that. I lived out in the country and never went to the games. But it was a lot of fun. After I did finally go out, I did play the last three games. I think I needed one more quarter to get my letter."
By his sophomore season, Hoffman was entrenched in the lineup, turning more and more heads as he was pushing opposing linemen out of the way. By today's standards he was a mighty small lineman, listed in the programs at anywhere from 180-190 pounds. Still Hoffman typically dealt with larger opponents, often 200-225 pounds. He still remembers those days fondly, noting that it was all a part of the game back then.
After his senior season, he received a Western Union telegram notifying him that he had accomplished what no Van Wert Cougar had done previously -- a slot on the all-Ohio team.
"A couple of guys told me I might get that, a couple of guys who had already graduated. It was a pretty big honor," Hoffman remembered. "We went to Columbus for a recognition dinner. Then that summer we had an all-star game in Toledo between the north and the south. I really didn't get to play too much in that, but I played some."

In all the years since high school, Hoffman has plenty of memories. "Yeah, it was a lot of fun. It was a great bunch of guys I played with. You still remember your teammates."
Spurning offers from other colleges, Hoffman went to Ohio State for a quarter, but returned home soon after. Although Hoffman never really left the area for any length of time, his accomplishments will serve as the example for this year's homecoming celebration. As for Hoffman, he says he's happy to help out wherever he can. He still remembers the camaraderie between his teammates and hopes the current team is forming the same kind of memories.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Times Bulletin Editor
VAN WERT - One more wind turbine is set to be built to the north of Van Wert, but like two others nearby, this one is going to increase the amount of green energy for one local company.
Cooper Farms has already jumped headlong into wind energy by putting up two turbines intended to provide more than half of the plant's electrical usage.
"When we built the first two, we built them with the idea of supplying about 60 percent of our electric needs for our plant... and it did." explained Cooper Farms CEO Jim Cooper. He went on to explain that in the two years it took between the initial study of using wind power and the time the turbines were on line, the firm expanded the Van Wert plant.
"So instead of producing 60 percent of the needs, it was down to around 50 percent of the needs, so that's why we are in the process today of breaking ground for the third turbine which will take us up to around 75 percent of our production needs at the Van Wert plant," he shared.
Cooper Farms officially broke ground for the company's third wind turbine Monday morning at a site just north of the company's cooked meats operation just off U.S. 127. Jim Cooper was joined by Dianne Cooper, the firm's corporate secretary, and Chief Operating Officer Gary Cooper in turning up shovels of dirt at the turbine construction site. Then for good measure, Jim Cooper climbed into a backhoe and did a little more serious digging to get the project underway.
The new turbine will be identical to the two existing units. They can be distinguished from the turbines of the Blue Creek Wind Farm by looking at the top of the tower on the opposite end from the blades. The turbines Cooper Farms are using have a small button shape while the Blue Creek turbines are longer at the nacelle.
The turbines themselves are 431 feet high with components made in both the U.S. and China. As with the installation of the first two turbines, One Energy, of Findlay, is heading up the construction.
On Monday, Cooper Farms was given a proclamation from the offices of Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor. Northwest Ohio Regional Liaison Chase Francis made the presentation at the groundbreaking site. Also speaking was Ohio 1st District State Sen. Cliff Hite, who congratulated Cooper Farms on this step.
This third turbine is scheduled to be ready by the end of the year. One year ago, Cooper Farms started construction of the two current turbines. Those were finished and operational in approximately the same time frame.
In all, Jim Cooper noted that he and the company think wind power is a good alternative.
"We figured that wind power would be a good thing for us. It fit our mentality," he stated. "We've got an ongoing commitment to providing the best products while incurring the least environmental impact in the surrounding communities and farms and waterways. We know it is vital that we are good stewards of the natural resources all around us, and providing a good place for our children and grandchildren to live in the years to come."

Thursday, July 05, 2012

Head-on crash hurts two

Two persons were hospitalized after a head-on collision Thursday at approximately 8:39 a.m. when a pickup truck crossed the center line of U.S. 127 south of Van Wert. Terry Kidwell of Decatur, Illinois was driving this 2001 Dodge 3500 northbound just south of Hickory Sticks Golf Club when he stuck a northbound tractor-trailer rig driven by Donald Wells of Van Wert. Crews had to extricate Kidwell and a passenger from the vehicle. They were taken to Van Wert Hospital, then transfered by helicopter to Fort Wayne for further treatment. Wells refused treatment at the scene. The Highway Patrol was assisted by the Van Wert County Sheriff's Office, Brickner Ambulance, and the Ohio City Fire Department. (Times Bulletin/Kirk Dougal)

The end of storm cleanup is in sight

Times Bulletin News Writer

VAN WERT - After nearly a week of storm cleanup and electrical service restoration, it appears the finish line is on the horizon for many workers and volunteers.
The Van Wert County Emergency Management Agency announced that the American Red Cross emergency shelter, which had been set up at Van Wert Middle School, will be shut down Friday at 7 p.m.
The shelter has been a source of help to many people throughout the power outages which followed the storm On Tuesday, the Salvation Army fed 130 people at the shelter. In addition, 18 people were reported spending the day and night at facility. That number has continually decreased from the 64 people on day one. The American Red Cross is currently addressing the needs of people still at the shelter and making accommodations for them when the shelter closes.
Efforts to restore power to customers are also approaching conclusion. By Thursday evening, American Electric Power reported that 82 percent of its customers who lost electric service have now been restored. That still leaves 144,000 AEP Ohio customers in the dark, but the company has stated that 90-95 percent restoration will be complete by midnight Saturday. Of those still without electricity, AEP is reporting 305 still without power in the county with most of those in the Scott area.
Customer of Dayton Power & Light and Midwest Electric were all reported as restored on Thursday. Paulding-Putnam Electrical Cooperative members are slowly returning to service. As of Thursday, the co-op reported that 2,885 customers of the 13,000 members in Van Wert, Paulding, Putnam counties and the surrounding area were still without power.
One clean up area that is ramping up at this time is debris removal. ODOT Van Wert's facility superintendent Don Taylor noted that the state has seven employees assisting villages such as Convoy and Ohio City with debris removal.
"As long as it takes, we will be there," said Taylor in response to the clean up situation.
Van Wert County Engineer Kyle Wendel reported that he has three crews working to sweep debris off of county roads and will begin to sweep township roads along with the township trustees beginning next week.
Van Wert County Solid Waste Coordinator George Brake said that the City of Van Wert has been provided with a front loader for assistance in collecting and bringing brush debris to the center. The center is currently at 25 percent capacity, which Brake noted leaves plenty of room. Gates to the center are always open and everyone is working together to clear the area of debris.
At a Thursday meeting of agency heads from Van Wert County, Barb Hoffman of the Van Wert County Health Department confirmed that high-priority restaurants and businesses have been checked by the Health Department.
Van Wert County EMA Director Rick McCoy said, "There have been rumors circulating that FEMA might be coming to pass out financial assistance and free generators to the Van Wert area... This is not the case, but disaster assessment will be done across Ohio to determine if the costs involved meet federal criteria to be eligible for aid to local government and individual assistance."
McCoy revealed that once cleanup and assessment is concluded, the goal is to rethink current plans that are already in place of how to notify the public of weather information. Last Friday's storm not only disabled television, radio, and newspapers, but also left NOAA Weather Radio transmitters on the ground.
Straight line winds during the storm have been reported at 87 mph in Scott, but no tornadoes are being confirmed. Gustnadoes on the other hand were reported by many and were confused as tornadoes. Unlike tornadoes, gustnadoes form from the ground up and do not dig into the ground. McCoy remarked that this atmosphere that produced this storm will not just go away and future storms should be watched very closely.
"The current system is very fragile," McCoy noted, and the weather system we saw has not downsized the drought."
With this heat any storms that develop will only bring hail and wind, not the large amounts of rainfall that is seen in the spring months. AEP is still very concerned with keeping power maintained during the heatwave that will be continuing throughout the summer months.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Not my job

“So what is it that you do?”
It was an innocent enough question. The lady asking me that question was truly stumped as to the tasks and responsibilities of a newspaper editor. So I had to stop and think about all I actually do as part of my job. But the other side of it all was thinking about what other people think my job is. I have some people assume weird things about what my job is all about. With that in mind, let me share what my job is not.
My job is not nine to five. If you want to find me in the office, early in the morning is not the time to do it. You see, I work late hours. I am here right before the pages are sent to the printer at midnight or 1 a.m., so don’t assume I am sitting cheerily at my desk bright-eyed and bushy-tailed (whatever that means) at 8 or 9 in the a.m. If I am up at that hour, I am probably covering some sort of news event. I am not at my desk early in the morning unless insomnia sets in.
My job is not to deliver your newspaper. I am constantly amazed that people call the newsroom to report that their paper was late or in the wrong place or whatever else can go wrong with delivering an edition. That comes under circulation. I really have no idea about delivery schedules. That happens early in the morning. As I said, I am not on the morning shift at the office. But beyond that, delivery concerns fall under a different department. Not that I don’t want to help, but I just don’t have that information. I’ll send you to someone who can help.
My job is not to ruin the lives of young people who make a few mistakes and wind up on the wrong side of the law. On more than one occasion (including this past week), I have had people accuse me of ruining the lives of the people who appear in court by taking their pictures and putting the information in the newspaper. I am not making this up. This most recent time, an adult leaned over and whispered to me that I ruin the lives of these poor kids. I am not sure which of the kids was being ruined, but during that session of court there were a lot of drug cases on the docket. As I considered the accusation I thought that of all the people who are ruining the lives of these defendants, I am nowhere near the top of that list. I didn't sell little Johnny or Janie the drugs. I didn't talk them into taking drugs. I didn't raise the boy or girl or give any fatherly advice. I didn't arrest them when they bought or sold the drugs. I did not even get Johnny or Janie high. The blame on that one goes to Johnny or Janie. The fact that their names are in the newspaper is not my fault. I report what happens, I don't cause things to happen.
Personally, I wish every one of those defendants would turn their lives around and that those falsely accused would be vindicated. Perhaps what is my job in court is to tell the truth and show the consequences of what can happen if you use illegal drugs, or steal, or beat up a family member, or drive drunk, or break into houses. But, no, I don't ruin anyone's life. And most of those lives are not ruined if they can break out of the bad habits.
Finally, my job is not to print only good news or to print only bad news. You see, both can be news. I am not to hide the bad and print a propaganda sheet for the county. By the same token, I do not hide the good. But, as many people have noted throughout the years, dog bites man is not usually news, but man bites dog is news. The principle is that something that you expect is not news, but the unexpected is not news. We report accidents, but not when everyone makes it home safe at night. We report lawbreaking, not when folks obey the law. Yet we still celebrate the wonderful accomplishments of area residents. It's a balancing act. My job is to try to make it balance throughout the year. Some days the scale tips to the bad, some days to the good.
So, that's what I don't do. Oh, one more thing I don't do: Sleep eight hours a day. It's all part of the job.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Ellinger resigns as fair manager

Times Bulletin Editor

VAN WERT - Just over five months since he accepted the position, Denis Ellinger has resigned as fair manager for the Van Wert County Agricultural Society. Ellinger tendered his resignation Wednesday night at the monthly Fair Board meeting.
Fair Board President Dave Evans noted, "The effective date is in July, but he is going to stay on and help out through the fair. We will be getting some office help in starting in July. The first of July is when the office opens up full time. The search will start all over again here soon. Our goal is to get somebody in by the time of the fair, so they can go through the fair and see what it's like and be part of it."
According to Evans, Ellinger had some personal and family issues which had brought him back to the Van Wert area after being away for more than 20 years. He told the board that the responsibilities of fair manager were keeping him from taking care of those issues.
"That's the only issue we were told about last night," Evans revealed. "He's done a great job, and we're obviously disappointed. We think he's done a pretty good job."
Ellinger took over in January after long-time Fair Manager Paul Oechsle after more than three decades of association with the Van Wert County Fair.
A Van Wert County native, Ellinger left the area in the 70s to serve in the U.S. Navy. He then earned two business degrees at Ohio State University before moving south. His previous positions included serving as director of procurement for the University of South Carolina in Spartanville, and as an operations manager at Proctor & Gamble in Lima.
Although he will not be officially on the job for the 2012 edition of the fair Aug. 29 through Sept. 3, Ellinger has been in on much of the planning for the event. Evans said that Ellinger will be a great help as the number of weeks before the fair gets smaller.
"At this point in time, he'll be on and able to do things with contracts and things like that," Evans stated. "We'll have him in place, and the rest of the board members and our office help. As of now, things will continue as they are. He has graciously agreed to stay on and help us out, get us through fair. Then we can move and try to get somebody in to experience the fair and move on from there."

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