Kelleys Island News
By Leslie Korenko
April was a wild ride weather-wise. Temps ranged from the 70s to the low 30s, lots of wind and a light snow and almost freezing temps on the 21st. We have already seen the arrival of the Red Wing Blackbirds, while daffodils and snow drops have faded away. Now we look forward to Orioles, Hummingbirds and lilacs. Spring is absolutely spectacular here. Parking lots are filled with boat trailers from Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota, S. Dakota and more. It was sad news on April 1, when a major fire destroyed a beautiful home on Long Point. Everyone got out safely, but the house was completely destroyed with no time to save anything inside. Frontier has been busy installing new internet on the island. Each day it seems like their entire fleet of trucks is roaming around.
We always look forward to May as people return for the summer season. The seasonal liquor licenses allow opening of the balance of the restaurants on May 1st. The History Museum will be opening up on May 15th to celebrate International Museum Day and Julie Valentine will be taking over as the new Gift Shop manager. The Parsonage Resale Shop is usually open on weekends. So be sure to say hello! Looks like the KI Chamber office will be moving. No word yet on its new location and nothing but rumors on what will be going into their old space at the ferry dock. It’s unclear what is happening to Missy Magoo’s. It looks pretty empty and there is a sign in the window. The Butterfly Kingdom on Division St. is now the Monarch Winery and tasting room as they have now received approval.
Council moves to the second Thursday of the month at 7:00 at Kelleys Hall. There will be an option for online attendance on the Village website. There was a special Council meeting on March 30th with second readings of both the Police and employee sections of the Village Code. Council also agreed to award a paving contract to Precision Paving for Addison Rd. and pot hole projects. At the regular April 10th meeting, and with the help of Russ and Bobby, the sound situation was finally working better. The POLICE DEPT. reported making 800 winter house checks and new officers were sworn in after the meeting. The Police Chief legislation, which increased the Chief’s hours, had its (second) second reading but still no additional compensation. It is hoped that this is corrected at the next meeting. The Chief will be required to work every Friday and Saturday for the 26 weeks of summer and the “with no exceptions” part will be reworked.
The FAA is doing an environmental assessment of the Monaghan Road project at the AIRPORT and a new runway lighting scheme is under consideration. A request has been made to vacate a part of Orchard Lane (a Village road). The audit of the Village books will begin the week of May 24th. THE WATER RATE increase was once again mentioned. The last increases were 15% in 2015 and 3% in 2018. Everyone agrees it is needed, but no one wanted to direct the Village solicitor to actually prepare the legislation for a 1.5% increase. A (3-month) water bill of $200 would be increased by $3.00 and it was not clear if that was on the water usage portion or includes the fixed part of the bill.
The FIRE DEPT. expressed its appreciation to the Danbury Fire and Catawba Island Fire Depts. for their response to a call for mutual aid on the Long Point fire. Thanks also to the eight members and three probationary members of our Fire Dept. and the Island’s EMTs who were present and assisted. Seven probationary fire fighters have completed their classes and are ready for testing. OPEN BURNING is on hold until fall. Ten people participated in the Emergency Medical Responder class this spring and await their certification. The EMS was unsuccessful in securing a grant for a new cardiac monitor. The old one will no longer be approved for patient use in February of 2022.
News from Other Islands
Middle Bass Island
Lee Hisey is working on the 2021 MBI Phone Listing/Directory. The 2020 phone listing was skipped due to COVID. Please get your changes to Lee or Penny Schmidlin by no later than May 15th, 2021. Please let Lee know about any scheduled events/church services/town hall trustees, etc. It will be going to the print shop on May 17th. It’s free. Lee can be reached at 440-315-6000 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
On the 19th and 20th of April, Pelee Islanders could get their first Covid vaccinations. Unfortunately, due to a shortage of vaccine in Canada, their second shots are scheduled for mid summer.
Rick Smith says he was able to make 52 quarts of maple syrup from the sap he collected from his trees as winter ended and spring began.
Mark Emrick has sold the popular Anchor & Wheel Inn. The new owner reportedly is not interested in running a restaurant. Perhaps down the line there will be someone who wants to open one there again.
Although many Island events are being reinstated this season, Kelleys Island has decided in April to cancel its Island Fest for this year.
Progressive Ohio Bike Week is a big event for motorcycle enthusiasts that takes place in Sandusky each year. This year, the Kelleys Island Ferry Service will offer free Ohio Bike week customer motorcycle transport to and from the island with paid passenger passage from Monday, May 31, through Friday, June 4, for those bikers who want to visit the island.
The Kelleys Island Chamber of Commerce and Kelleys Life Newspaper are inaugurating an Annual Photo Contest beginning May 1, 2021, and ending August 31, 2021. There will be cash prizes, plus a $500 grand prize. Rules and details about the contest can be found at kelleysislandcontest.com.
We found this interesting post on social media: “What is your opinion on this: Should the Inscription Rock be moved inside a small building with indirect lighting on it, to protect it from rain, snow, storms, the lake. The building could be open to tourists in season. When I was up there last August, there were coins all over the rock. I’ll add that I hope all the coins go into a fund for preserving the Inscription Rock.”
Holy Toledo Revival Camp will be held from August 6-8 (Friday-Sunday) at the Kelleys Island 4-H Camp. This camp is for ages 12-18. Holy Toledo Revival Camp is designed to create an atmosphere where young people can experience the power, presence, and love of God. Through nightly services, morning worship sessions, and breakout sessions, students will be equipped to carry the fire of revival and release the Kingdom of God in their homes, communities, schools and cities. For more information or any questions, please contact Camp Directors, Michael Wettrich or Anita Siler. (Michaelwettrich@chcministries.org or Anitasiler@chcministries.org).
The previous piece is published in this month’s Put-in-Bay Gazette. The Gazette has been producing incredible independent Put-in-Bay island news for over 40 years. If you have any interest at all in what is happening on South Bass Island, we urge you strongly to subscribe to the Put-in-Bay Gazette. One-year online subscriptions are only $15, and print subscriptions are available as well. To subscribe please visit the Put-in-Bay Gazette subscription form.
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