The Best of Parma 2018 is here! Going into our 2nd year, we've expanded categories, made it easier for people to nominate and to vote on their favorites and expanded voting and nominating time to ensure everyone could have their voice heard.
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On December 10. 2018 Parma Heights Mayor Michael P. Byrne was elected by the Cuyahoga Mayors and City Managers to a 3 year term on the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) Board of Trustees. He replaced Newburgh Heights Mayor Trevor Elkins. This is welcome news to many people in our community that rely on RTA for their major if not only form of transportation. There is a strong hope that having someone from this area serve on the board will improve conditions experienced by riders here which have worsened over the past several years. Speaking for myself, I live on a main street where the nearest RTA route is a long distance from where I live, even for a young person, let alone a 68 year old man. Sometimes it seems that the suburbs are merely an afterthought for RTA planners, even though a good deal of the sales tax which mostly funds RTA comes from those areas.
Parma Mayor Tim DeGeeter and council members presented proclamations to standout citizens at the Dec. 17 council meeting. Parma native Nicholas Celebrezze was recognized for his years of service as a state representative, councilman and civic activist. In 2006, he formed a small family-owned law firm. From 2006 to 2012, he served as Parma Ward 3 councilman. Since 2012, he has been an elected member of the Ohio General Assembly. He has served as the assistant minority leader of the Ohio House of Representatives and was appointed commissioner of the Ohio Commission on Fatherhood. He recently was selected as a Super Lawyer Rising Star of Family Law in Ohio.
Did you know that the Parma area has more than 20 pizza shops, not even counting chains or bars that serve slices of everybody’s favorite pie? With that many shops, The Young Professionals of Parma thought if smaller areas like Lakewood and West Park hold bake-offs, why shouldn’t Parma? The non-profit organization is proud to announce it has partnered with the City of Parma, City of Parma Heights and the City of Seven Hills to host a pizza bake-off Thursday, January 24, 2019. The event will take place from 5:30 p.m to 8:30 p.m. at German Central at 7863 York Rd. Attendees will be able to sample pizza slices from various vendors and vote for their favorite.
Two major projects will be beneficial to Parma’s economic development and will offer more job opportunities for residents. Pitt Ohio, a transportation and logistics company headquartered in Pittsburgh, is building a new complex in Parma that will bring nearly 200 jobs to the city. The 100,000-square-foot trucking terminal on Chevrolet Boulevard will rely heavily on wind energy produced from its eight newly constructed vertical wind turbines. The trucking company’s $3.3 million complex will also include solar panels in an effort to make the facility independent of the energy grid. Pitt Ohio prides itself on sustainability. “Anytime you have a great company like Pitt Ohio wanting to locate in your city, you want to partner with them on projects of this magnitude, and that’s what we’ve done,” Parma Mayor Tim DeGeeter said.
The Cassidy Theatre has announced its 2019 season, and it promises to offer area theatre-goers some surefire fun.
The Board of Trustees of the City of Parma Andrew Boyko Memorial Scholarship Foundation is pleased to announce that applications are being accepted for the 2019 award season. In its twelfth year, the Foundation will once again offer three to five scholarships with a minimum award of $1,500 each. One of these scholarships will be designated for an applicant exhibiting an exceptional commitment to community service. Applications are available on the City of Parma website at http://www.cityofparma-oh.gov. Applications may also be obtained at Parma City Hall, any of the Parma Cuyahoga County Public Library branches or any high school located within the Parma City School District. The Scholarship is intended to provide financial assistance to high school seniors or equivalent who are residents of the City of Parma wishing to pursue post-secondary education during the 2019 – 2020 academic year. Financial need, work ethic, community service and accomplishments are among the selection criteria for the scholarship. The application deadline is April 1, 2019. For more information or to donate to the Foundation please contact Parma City Council President and Board of Trustees Member Sean Brennan at firstname.lastname@example.org or 440-885-8091.
SHOW KIDS YOU CARE: DEAL W/PROBLEMS & CONFLICTS WHILE THEY’RE STILL SMALL. January’s Asset Category: Positive Identity
After growing up in Parma and spending my life living in northern Ohio, I was suddenly transferred and promoted to manager of a field office in Spartanburg South Carolina. Spartanburg is in the “upstate” region of South Carolina in the piedmont region about an hour’s drive southwest of Charlotte. I was also a half day’s drive from the coast. Best of all, I was away from the snow and cold of northern Ohio. It was the first week of February and there was more than a foot of snow in my backyard with the temperature in the mid teens when I left northern Ohio. When I arrived in South Carolina, it was cloudy and the temperature was around 50 degrees with no snow on the ground. I was beginning to like this already.
If you’re from Parma, you probably have a family beer, and that beer is most likely domestic. Ours is Pabst. My neighbor’s is Genesee. My friend’s is Miller Light. The domestic preferences of previous generations have been reflected in many of the tap offerings at local Parma bars. And while my generation (those of us in our 20s and 30s) can certainly appreciate an ice-cold and affordable domestic beverage, our tastes are also representative of the exploding craft beer scene. We’re lucky to have so many local breweries in the Cleveland area and, while some may think all of Parma’s still set on Pabst (no offense Mom and Dad), I’m excited to see more craft beers on the taps of many of the city’s bars and restaurants; actually my parents are drinking craft beer now too.
CASA of Cuyahoga County, a program of Child and Family Advocates of Cuyahoga County, recruits, screens, trains, and supports volunteers who act as independent fact-finders for the court in cases involving child abuse and neglect. CASAs collect information that helps the judge make the best decision for a safe, caring, and permanent home for children involved in the juvenile justice and child welfare systems. CASAs are everyday citizens who are trained and appointed by the court to advocate for the safety and well-being of children who are victims of abuse or neglect. CASAs are assigned at the earliest stages of a case and continue to be an advocate for the child through their time in the court system. CASAs work collaboratively with all parties on the case, for the best interests of children. CASAs are only assigned to 1-2 cases at a time and spend approximately 10 hours a month on a case.
Homes and residences in Cox Communications’ serviceable areas in Parma now have access to gigabit Internet speeds, providing ultra-fast connectivity for the latest online technology advancements, including video-chatting, gaming and movies and TV shows.
I attended the PAWS (Performing Animal Welfare Society) Conference in Burbank, California, November 9,10,11. I attended in 2010 when it was held at their San Andreas Sanctuary where the tigers and elephants reside. They have another sanctuary in Galt, which houses all other rescued species.
When Spring and Summer return. enjoy the sun, along with a cold beverage and good meal on one of Parma's many patios.
Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C®) is presenting a retrospective of artworks created by the late David Wilder, a former adjunct instructor of art, during a two-month exhibit at Western Campus. Drawing and paintings by Wilder — who was killed in a drive-by shooting in Cleveland in March 2017 — will be on sale throughout the show to raise money for a scholarship created in his memory.
The Women in Transition program at Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) will launch a new session at Western Campus on Jan. 14. The free program empowers women in their pursuit of education and professional training. Participants build confidence and self-esteem through classes on personal development, career exploration and financial and computer literacy. The course is designed to assist women in transitional periods of their lives, such as a career change or return to the workforce. The eight-week, noncredit program is free and open to the public.
When Frances Cole’s oncologist recommended radiation therapy for breast cancer, the 91-year-old widow faced a daunting roadblock: no reliable transportation to get to her appointments at the Seidman Cancer Center at University Hospitals Parma Medical Center. At first, the Parma Heights woman who no longer drives declined treatment. She didn’t want to burden anyone else’s life with six solid weeks of daily radiation appointments. But her doctor nudged her down the Road to Recovery, an American Cancer Society program that provides complementary transportation to patients who need help traveling to cancer-related medical appointments. “I’ve never taken things from people without paying for it, and I sort of felt guilty,” said Frances, whose husband died three years ago and who refused to ask family members to miss work or rearrange schedules for such a major time commitment. “All the drivers were so nice. And I felt so good about my nurses and my care, I just needed help getting there.”
December Highlights: The NEW MYCOM website is up and ready to view! Check out what MyCom is and does on MyComCLE.org !!!!
In the “Good Old Days” of my childhood, there are some memories that return quite often. Winter brings back the fun we kids had during the 50’s snowstorms. It was around that time my mother was busy with a group of ladies who shared knowledge in the skills of making feather quilts. We had known about this treasured, cozy bedcover because our grandmother had a feather quilt on her bed. It always dared me, with the foot-high fluff, to jump in the middle and get lost in the cozy, cuddling warmth. Now, mom had watched and helped friends create several quilts and decided to try it on her own. She bought the goose feathers from a farmer, had help removing any hard pieces or missed roots, assembled and stitched the cloth pieces, and carefully filled the huge “bag,” It got sewed up and ready for its outer covering.
Mom was proud of her accomplishment and announced that as soon as she sewed a strong outer cover for the large “bag” of feathers, my sister and I could have it for our double bed. We were excited yet disappointed that we would have to wait. But we didn’t wait long. That weekend the weather changed into a freezing snowstorm. Our thin blankets were not enough for our comfort, especially when we knew there was a solution to our complaining. We decided to wake up our mother and ask for the warmth of the “almost” finished quilt tucked away in the closet. We pouted and turned on our sad faces.
Our Family Caring for Yours. Pleasant Lake Villa held its 3rd annual Be a Santa to a Senior gift drive to help make the holidays a little brighter for senior citizens in the community. The drive was held December 3-7 and items were dropped off at Pleasant Lake Villa and Regency West Hospital. A reception for the community members was held at Pleasant Lake Villa on December 6th. “This year, Regency West Hospital in Middleburg Heights contributed as a drop off site” shared Brittany Stepp, Pleasant Lake Villa Clinical Liaison. “With the addition of Regency West Hospital, we gathered over 500 items to help our surrounding communities.” Donations were given to help needy senior citizens in Brooklyn Heights, Garfield Heights, Middleburg Heights, Parma, Parma Heights, North Royalton senior centers.
Before you read this column, define the word “impeachment.” If you are like most, you may have answered something along the lines of, “to remove an official from office.” However, if that were the definition, then why did Presidents Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton – the only presidents to have been impeached - remain in office following their respective impeachments? The answer is that the word impeach means to accuse of wrongdoing. It is the equivalent of a criminal indictment, when a defendant is accused of a crime by a grand jury. Both Presidents were accused of breaking the law, but neither were found guilty of the crimes, nor, subsequently, removed from office.
Along the road of life, each one of us needs reliable direction for the journey. Anticipation is a significant part of the excitement of Jesus’ return. Anyone desiring forgiveness of sin and eternal salvation must come to God through Jesus Christ. Becoming more optimistic takes time, effort, and determination; but it can be done. Belief is believing in something that cannot always be proved by reasoning. Believers are to pursue spirituality that is authentic, compassionate, and just. Best to obey Scripture (God’s Word) than any other declared authority. God alone is totally worthy of all our devotion and praise. God loves the rich, the poor, and everybody in between. God’s way of life is the way of love and giving which yields happiness, joy, and peace. Honorable citizens in America are on the decline from bottom to top. Humility is making the most of what we do not like. It is God’s free gift of grace that justifies us (declares us righteous). Many people have hidden agendas; God does not. Our faith must rest on the power of God. Our spiritual house (our heart) suffers when left unattended. People devoted to help make the world a better place are more inclined to see the brighter side of life. People who insult others (especially children) inflict wounds that never heal completely. Positive thinking helps us do everything better than negative thinking will. Scripture reminds us that we are to serve others, especially the needy. “Shame” is being aware of doing something wrong. The Lord’s commandments are clear and provide light so the eyes can see. We all experience sorrow, but we stand certain in the promises of God. We need to encourage one another in times of despair and rely on faith, hope, and love. We yearn for the person with self-control, temperance, and strong moral character.
The AARP Foundation Tax-Aide Program will be getting underway again this year starting the first week in February and ending the 15th of April 2019. This IRS-supported FREE tax service is offered on a non-discriminatory basis without consideration of race, religion, gender, disability, or sexual orientation. We give special attention to those with low or moderate incomes and/or aged 60 and older. Taxpayers do NOT have to be retired or a member of AARP.
Tax-Aide sites in southwest Cuyahoga County are located at:
Do you experience cramping, pain or tiredness in your legs or hip muscles while walking or climbing stairs? These are the most common symptoms of Peripheral Artery Disease or PAD.
There are some subjects that people talk about all of the time. Some never. Then there are other things that really need to be discussed, even if the discussion is uncomfortable. Our General Motors Parma Metal Center is one of them, I believe. When the recent announcements of plant closings by GM were made, I was disappointed for the places targeted for closure, while also relieved that our plant wasn't one of them- this time. The times that we live in seem to be increasingly uncertain, so one can't help but think of what is in fact our largest taxpayer and major regional employer. Just how important the GM Parma Metal Center is to our community cannot be underestimated. All of my life has been spent living in the shadow of this plant. When I went to school in the 1960's, it seemed like every other kid's Dad worked there. When shifts let out, there were Manhattan style traffic jams as far as the eye could see, as workers streamed out by the thousands. It was easy enough to take it all for granted.
Business was booming this past Saturday for many small businesses in Parma. Nov. 24 marked the sixth year for the city’s Small Business Saturday when holiday shoppers were encouraged to shop local the day after Black Friday. Many council members visited small businesses in their wards the week before, giving owners “Shop Small Here” signs to post on their storefront windows. They also posted images on the Shop Small Parma Facebook page.
It's the most wonderful time of the year! The City of Parma, in conjunction with The Young Professionals of Parma, is hosting its annual Holiday Lights contest in an effort to honor the city’s holiday lights masters.
Entries will be accepted now through December 16. Hopeful contestants can submit photos or videos of their holiday lights displays to HolidayLights@ParmaYPs.com. Four winners will be selected. Winners for best showmanship, coverage and aesthetics will each receive $50 gift cards to Chuppa's Marketplace, and then one overall winner will receive a $100 gift card to Fast Eddy's.
Our neighbors and friends in the Parma area are known for philanthropy, giving spirit and volunteerism. We watch out for each other and support each other in tough times. The generosity of the community over the years is heartwarming. Last year alone, the response to the Family Collaborative’s Giving Tree program and ‘adoption’ of financially needy children was quite impressive. The Family Collaborative was able to give to just over 1,000 kids at Christmastime due to the kindness of those in our communities.
The Prama Art Space and Gallery held their first show on November 4, and the response was very encouraging indeed. Throughout the course of 4 hours that the show lasted, approximately 200 people showed up. That is a very good response, and once again proves for me that while Parma has been lacking in Arts activities for a city our size, this is a sure sign that there is indeed a demand for art here. It should be noted that while some may believe that residents in the community have a lukewarm preference for art, a turnout like this for an initial event seems to suggest that in fact, Parma residents are literally starving for art!
“Sunday, November 11 (6:39 pm): Dispatch Message – At 1631 hours PPD and PFD Responded to . . .Wexford Ave for a 74 YO Male with self-inflicted gunshot. House appeared to be secure and there was nothing suspicious about death - coroner has come to claim the body.” When I received this message from the Parma Dispatch Center last month, my heart sunk and it has been bothering me ever since. I did not know this gentleman, but I cannot help but be saddened knowing that he was, no doubt, suffering from loneliness and depression. His death awakened the memory of my Uncle Eugene who took his own life when I was a young teenager, as well as the students at the school where I teach that have either attempted or succeeded in ending their own lives. It also reminded me of the young man who shot himself last year in Parma soon after returning from serving our country.
O The Parma Heights PACT (Police & Community Together) Youth Group….
>> Congratulations to the PACT Unit Youth Group and co-facilitators, Ptl. Eric Taylor and Case Manager Kelly Latevola for being recognized & receiving a MyCom Network Agency Award for Youth Engagement. This is given to those organizations “….actively & authentically engaging youth in decision making about youth programming, community activities for children and young adults and/or community planning.” The award was presented during the 2018 Annual MyCom Youth Awards banquet held on November 15th.
>> For announcements & detailed information re. their bi-weekly (6:00 – 7:30 pm., Tuesday) meetings visit their Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/parmaheights.police.
O Save the Date – The Ohio Association of Foodbanks, in partnership with the Ohio Dept of Education, will be hosting the 8th annual statewide Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) Summit in 2019! When: Tuesday Feb 12, 2019; Where: Mid-Ohio Foodbank, Grove City (just south of Columbus); Target Audience: a returning sponsor or site, a partner, or an organization considering whether SFSP is a fit for you. Registration for the event will opens in early January 2019.
O From Parma City Schools….
>> IF YOU VOTED “NO” FOR THE SCHOOL LEVY, Supt. Smialek is inviting you to attend his next Town Hall meeting starting at 6:30, on Wednesday, December 5th at the Parma (Powers Blvd) Branch Library. Following a structured format, you’ll be given an opportunity to express the rationale for your vote….w/the request that folks discuss only matters within the district’s control.
>> Schools in the District are gearing up for the Holidays. Visit the district’s and/or your child’s school website to view their schedule of programs, events and please show your support for those that you can.
>> Consider a donation to help students from Valley Forge H.S. complete an on-campus memorial to 15 alumni killed during the Vietnam war. They’re hoping to set the actual memorial in May and complete landscaping work shortly thereafter. A check memo’d as “Vietnam Memorial” sent to Valley Forge H.S. or an in-kind donation, i.e.: landscaping and/or concrete services are specifically needed, would both be appreciated. Contact Amy Byrne, email@example.com or Mike Stringer, firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
PARMA HEIGHTS -- The Parma Heights Police and students involved in the Police and Community Together (P.A.C.T.) Youth Group met November 27 at the Cassidy Theatre to do something really important this holiday season. The kids and police officers helped make greeting cards and put together care packages for soldiers serving overseas who will not be home for the holidays this year. The cards and packages will be sent to arrive before Christmas through Operation Christmas Cards for the Troops Overseas. The organization was founded eight years ago.
December’s Asset Category: CONSTRUCTIVE USE OF TIME. The pace of everyday life varies depending on the activities young people participate in. These fluctuations are normal, even healthy. As long as young people don’t consistently have too much to do or not enough to do, they’re right on track. Problems arise when the balance begins to tip too far to one side or the other. Too much involvement can lead to stress or anxiety. Too little involvement can be a sign of depression or isolation. Ensure that young people constructively use their time for both fun and learning. This column’s focus will be on…..Asset #18 – Youth Program
Henry Fambrough is the last original member of the Motown group, The Spinners, and has insight to share. Fambrough, who recently turned 80 years old, say he still feels the same as he did when he was 20. As an 80-year-old, Fambrough is able to share a depth of wisdom and experience with readers.
November Highlights The NEW MYCOM website is up and ready to view! Check out what MyCom is and does on MyComCLE.org !!!!
The spirit of Christmas, and decorating for the holiday has been in Mark Klaus’ blood since his youth in Seven Hills. It’s not surprising then that the Normandy High School graduate parlayed the purchase of a church, a school and two storefronts in Medina into Castle Noel, an enterprise he calls “America’s Largest Indoor, Year ‘Round Christmas Entertainment Attraction.” “Our home was a Christmas wonderland,” Klaus said. (Klaus sounds like “Claus,” as in "Santa.") “We always had ornaments in the ceiling and Santa flying over the house.”
As I continue my search for relatives from the distant past, I am curious as to where they lived, what were their values and traditions. Did they have substantial successes or failures? History repeats, be it déjà vu or memory cells passed along the gene pool from centuries ago, I sure would like to connect the dots! In my youth there was no need to ask questions, elders rarely discussed events from their past. Such inquiries were quickly hushed away. As one grows older, one becomes wiser with much more time for reflection, and time to complete the missing pieces of their life puzzle. Surprisingly, I recall events from the past, but have difficulty remembering what I served for dinner yesterday!
What comes to your mind when you think of Parma? There are many answers depending on who you ask. You have locations such as Stearns Farm, West Creek, or The Shoppes at Parma, and you have both Polish Village and Ukrainian Village. The first thing that comes to mind for many, however, isn’t a place at all, but a thing: pink flamingos.
A $2 million investment in the renovation of a beautiful new UH Parma Medical Center office suite to house both General Surgery and UH Digestive Health Institute specialists streamlines care for patients and improves efficiencies for physicians and staff. “It's a genius idea to put surgery and GI doctors together," said Melinda Lakatos, BSN, RN, Nurse Manager of the CCU Stepdown, who was among the many employees and physicians who stopped by during a recent open house in Suite 309 of Medical Arts Center 2. “Our physicians consult with each other all the time on the floors. Now the patient doesn't have to go to several locations for appointments."