Parma mayor and council members honored an exceptional business, coach and citizen during the month of October.
I am contacted often by senior and disabled residents in our community who are seeking financial and other assistance. I find that, all too often, they are not aware of the programs offered by the local, state and federal governments or non-governmental organizations. That is why I recently reached out to Stacey Boycik, Manager of the Parma-Snow branch of the Cuyahoga County Public Library, to ask if she and her staff would consider partnering to put together a Senior Benefits Fair. Always willing to sponsor programs that benefit the community, she excitedly agreed.
Parma engineers met with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in Buffalo, N.Y., late this summer. They were seeking section 205 program funds to address surface-flooding concerns. The meeting stemmed from the city’s 2018 U.S. Army Corps of Engineers application regarding targeted flooding areas: Antoinette Drive, Thoreau Drive and Rousseau Drive; Regency Drive and Ridge Road; West Ridgewood Drive; and York Road and Pleasant Valley Drive. City engineers also discussed other areas that experienced flooding during a July 5 downpour: Bonnie Banks and Stormes Drive. Any awarded funds would be a 65/35 split with all the neighborhoods. “We keep pushing for these critical funds. We’ll do whatever they ask us on our end to seek these federal dollars for our city,” said Parma Mayor Tim DeGeeter. “We continue to look at different areas that got hit hard. We have had meetings with West Creek Conservancy and Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District searching for solutions to our storm water management challenges.”
Cleveland’s cycling community is once again gathering food for disadvantaged families and senior citizens this holiday season! Bike Cleveland and Bike Parma are hosting Cleveland’s seventh-annual Cranksgiving, a food drive by bicycle that begins and ends at the Parma Hunger Center. There is no cost to join the event, but cyclists usually spend about $15 (or however much you can) on food and supplies for others. Last year the event raised over $2000 worth of food and supplies for the Euclid Hunger Shelter and we are hoping to crush that goal this year. This event has historically been the largest single-day donation of the year for all of the food banks involved and Bike Parma is honored to be co-hosting this year.
How does Cranksgiving work? Riders of all ages and skill levels receive a map of nearby grocery stores and are challenged to ride their bikes – regardless of weather — to about four of the stores to purchase one or more food items specified for each. Everything purchased must be hauled by bicycle, either in a bag, pannier, rack, or trailer. You will return to donate the food you collected to benefit the Parma Hunger Center. You can ride anywhere from a few miles to 15 during the event.
Want to contribute even more? Clean out your pantry and bring nonperishable food items to the event. Organize a mini-food drive at your work or in your neighborhood. Or, if you cannot attend, you can make a donation to Bike Cleveland or Bike Parma (specifying that it is for Cranksgiving) and a Bike Cleveland or Bike Parma board member will fetch groceries on your behalf.
Here’s the timeline for the event:
Event Date: Saturday, November 23rd 2019
Event Home Base: Parma Hunger Center 5280 Broadview Rd, Parma, OH 44134
10:30AM – Registration, plus coffee and donuts
11:00AM – Brief program and send off
1:00-1:15PM – Return to Parma Hunger Center and donate food
1:30PM – Closing program and traditional group photo
AARP Foundation Tax-Aide, the nation’s largest free volunteer-run tax assistance and preparation service is seeking volunteers to assist taxpayers in southwestern Cuyahoga County. We have 2 tax preparation sites in Parma and additional sites in the neighboring cities of Middleburg Heights, Brook Park, Broadview Heights, North Royalton, and Strongsville. We also have sites Brooklyn, and Brooklyn Heights, and the Old Brooklyn and Puritas-Longmead neighborhoods of the city of Cleveland that are part of another Tax-Aide district. Volunteers do not have to be retired or members of AARP.
LRC Realty is in the midst of an $8.5 million overhaul of Midtown Plaza, giving the shopping center a modern look and a new name, Quarry Square. The project includes a 20,000-square-foot Aldi and a new Planet Fitness. The redevelopment will add energy-efficient LED lighting, improvements to the parking lot and an update to the façade.
From vibrant pink patches on their uniforms to trendy beards, police officers are making a fashion statement this fall. In October, many of the officers donned vibrant pink police patches on their sleeves in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. They also collaborated with University Hospital’s Seidman Cancer Center to bring awareness about breast cancer detection during Polish Village’s Treat & Greet, passing out literature at the event with UH staff. Furthermore, they raised money through City of Parma dress-down Fridays to help cover transportation costs for cancer patients traveling to and from treatments. The money was donated to the American Cancer Society’s Road to Recovery transportation program.
More re: Human Trafficking. Raising Awareness >> From the Human Trafficking Hotline - https://humantraffickinghotline.org/
Myths & Facts:
Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) will honor the courageous men and women who served in the nation’s military during a Veterans Day observance at 11 a.m. Friday, Nov. 8, at Western Campus. The remembrance will take place at the Veterans Memorial Garden and Galleria. “Veterans Day provides an opportunity to pay tribute to the brave men and women who have defended this nation,” said Rick DeChant, executive director of the College’s Veterans Initiative. “The peace we enjoy is because of those who served.”
Save the date, Sunday, December 8, 2019, Parma’s Christmas Parade kicks off at 2:00 p.m. from Stearn’s Farm and marches north on Ridge Road to the Ridgewood Golf Course.
Anthony DeMarco, Parma High School Alumni, retired Parma High Art Teacher, and Board Member of Parma Area Fine Arts Council, currently has his photographic work included in Cleveland Photo Fest, Altered Landscapes/Vision & Poetry Show, at Mac’s Backs-Books on Coventry. The show opened on October 25th, with a poetry reading at 7 p.m. Local poets and photographers shared their physical and emotionally altered landscapes in a live presentation. Photographers Kat Cade, Mary Ford, Samantha Bias, Janet Century, Tim Lachina, Anthony DeMarco, Todd Hoak, and Catherine McManus provided the visual stimulus through their surrealistic approach to internal and external landscapes. Eight poets performed their emotional reactions to the surrealistic photographs on display. Poets Krystal Sierra, Jim Szudy, Nicole Hennessy, Jimi Remick, Miguel Moor, John Burroughs, Siaarra Freeman and Doc Janning challenged the audience with their observations and perceptions. This show runs through November 30th.
PTAs throughout the Parma City School District are making a big impact on the lives of students, staff and families.
Students in Normandy High School’s Culinary Program help serve at the eighth annual Taste of the Towns hosted by The Parma City Schools Foundation, Inc.
Please join us for the second round of public meetings in Fall 2019 as we continue to discuss Master Planning for Strategic Consolidation.
These meetings will discuss data from last year's meetings and community survey results from this summer. There will also be specific options of campus plans presented in which the community can provide more targeted impact and feedback on the future of our facilities.
In an effort to increase communication among families, staff and the community, Parma City School District Superintendent Charles Smialek, Ph. D. will be hosting Town Hall Meetings throughout the 2019 – 2020 school year.
Parma Symphony Orchestra will perform a Halloween Themed Concert on Sunday, October 13 at 3:00 PM at Valley Forge High School Auditorium located at 9999 Independence Boulevard in Parma Heights performing: Dia de Los Muertos, Evil Eye and the Hideous Heart, Pit and the Pendulum, Dvorak -The Noon-Day Witch Overture accompanied by Valley Forge High School String Students. Also featuring: Soloist Roma Bandza performing Mozart Piano Concerto No. 12.
Parma Mayor Tim DeGeeter and Fire Chief Mike Lasky recentlyannounced that the Parma Fire Department will be awarded nearly $1.7 million in federal grant money to hire eight new firefighters and purchase 103 portable radios, three station exhaust capture systems and one filling station. The more than $1 million to hire eight firefighters was awarded through the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) grant program. The SAFER grant is a 90/10 cost-share. The fire department will spend $147,000 annually over the next two years to help cover salaries. “We need a fully staffed fire department to keep pace with the safety demands of a city our size,” DeGeeter said. “This grant provides us with critical funding to help us replace firefighters who retired or transferred to other departments. This will reduce overtime and allow us to continue to provide the quality service our residents have come to expect and deserve. I appreciate the support we received from ourU.S. representatives and our U.S. senators to help us secure this grant money. Our fire, police and engineering departments, as well as our Grants Coordinator Shelley Cullins, are proactive at applying for grants.”
More re: Human Trafficking
>> From the Human Trafficking Hotline - https://humantraffickinghotline.org/
Myths & Facts:
Myth: Only women and girls can be victims and survivors of sex trafficking
Reality: One study estimates that as many as half of sex trafficking victims and survivors are male. Advocates believe that percentage may be even higher but that male victims are far less likely to be identified. LGBTQ boys and young men are seen as particularly vulnerable to trafficking.
Myth: Human trafficking involves moving, traveling or transporting a person across state or national borders.
Reality: Human trafficking is often confused with human smuggling, which involves illegal border crossings. In fact, the crime of human trafficking does not require any movement whatsoever. Survivors can be recruited and trafficked in their own home towns, even their own homes.
Recently, Parma City Council approved and Mayor Timothy DeGeeter signed Resolution 108-19: “A RESOLUTION DETERMINING TO PROCEED WITH THE LEVY OF A PROPERTY TAX FOR THE PURPOSE OF CONSTRUCTION, RECONSTRUCTION, RESURFACING AND REPAIR OF THE CITY OF PARMA’S STREETS, ROADS AND BRIDGES, AND TO SUBMIT THE QUESTION OF THE TAX TO THE ELECTORS AT THE NOVEMBER 5, 2019, ELECTION.” This resolution will appear as Issue 53 on your November ballot. If the issue passes, the owner of a $100,000 home will contribute about $53 per year – less than $4.50 per month – for street improvements in our city. The 1.5 mil, 5-year renewable levy would raise about $2.2 million dollars per year, which must be used exclusively on streets.
Parma Mayor Tim DeGeeter presented a proclamation in September to Pastor Karen Wolcott to recognize Ridgewood United Methodist Church's 150th anniversary. "I congratulate the church on reaching this milestone year," DeGeeter said.
One day in late 2018, I sat and spoke with Laura D’Alessandro at an art exhibition at Prama Artspace Gallery, in Parma. We talked about lots of things, art, our families, and what we wanted to do with the rest of our lives. Laura told me she dreamed of bringing to Cleveland a photography festival similar to, PhotoNOLA, an event she participated in while living in New Orleans. Laura is a Cleveland born fine art photographer, writer and educator, who has returned home to Cleveland. Her dream, the 1st Annual Cleveland Photo Fest was realized this year and it is a huge success. Events like this one, usually start small and grow, but not this one. Through lots of hard work, very little sleep, and the help of friends, Laura, Herbert Ascherman Jr., founder and director of Cleveland Photographic Workshop and Jim Szudy, freelance photographer and founder of Gemini Developers, have attracted the attention of a great many, and not only local, national and international photographers.
Pre-Holiday Arts & Craft Show – October 12, 2019, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Donna Smallwood Activities Center, 7001 W Ridgewood Drive. Start your holiday shopping early, shop for unique one of a kind items at this sale. Free admission. Net proceeds benefit Parma Area Fine Arts Council’s free or reduced art classes offered to the community throughout the year.
This is a must see event! Beyond The Camera is an exhibition of a wide variety of photographic images where the photographers have used their creativity to push through the boundaries of a traditional photo. It runs through October 24th at Prama Artspace & Gallery in Parma. Beyond The Camera is part of the 2019 Cleveland Photo Fest. Prama is proud to have the opportunity to present this to the public.
We Are Parma Proud, the newly created 501(c)3 nonprofit, will be hosting the inaugural Frosty’s Fest at the Ridgewood Golf Course, located in the heart of Parma, at 6505 Ridge Road, on December 8, 2019, immediately following the Christmas Parade. The parade begins this year at 2:00 PM and marches north on Ridge Road to Ridgewood Golf Course. Frosty’s Fest promises to be a nice ending to the annual parade and includes family oriented planned events such as snow tubing, tree ceremony, kids craft, games, refreshments, Parma Cookie Walk, adult Ugly Sweater Contest, and of course Santa!
Saturday, October 26, 2019, from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM, Ridge Road in Polish Village will be teeming with young trick-or-treaters and their parents for the 9th Annual Treat & Greet. This much anticipated family oriented annual event has grown by leaps and bounds over the years.
U.S. Bank opened a new branch in the former Eat’n Park building at 2075 Snow Road. In April, U.S. Bank closed its nearby branch at 5659 Broadview Road so it could double its space at the new Snow Road location, which has 3,600 square feet. U.S. Bank senior executives said the new branch also offers customers more convenience with services such as wealth management, business banking and home mortgage loans all located in one branch. One feature the new branch offers that Branch Manager Sabrina Hinton takes great pride in highlighting is the conference room. "Any community or nonprofit group can use our conference room," Hinton said.
More than half of community college students across the nation wonder whether they’ll have enough money for their next meal. Nearly one in five don’t know where they’ll sleep night to night. These statistics serve as a starting point for discussions at the upcoming Conference on Confronting Poverty Among College Students, held at the Western Campus of Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C). The third annual conference will take place 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, in the Western Campus Health Careers and Sciences building. The event is hosted by the College’s Institute for Poverty and Urban Education.
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 2020 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 2020 – 2021 academic year. Financial need, work ethic, community service and accomplishments are among the selection criteria for the scholarship. The application deadline is April 1, 2020. For more information or to donate to the Foundation please contact Parma City Council President and Board of Trustees Member Sean Brennan at email@example.com or 440-885-8091.
Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) will host Fall Visit Days at Western Campus in October to introduce prospective students to academic and career opportunities. The hourlong sessions provide a chance to learn about enrollment, financial aid and scholarships; discover the variety of student services available; and explore the buildings.
Feel the burn at the Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) Autumn Blaze 5K while running past a blazing fire simulator on a course highlighting the KeyBank Public Safety Training Center at Western Campus. Proceeds from the one-of-a-kind race benefit Greater Cleveland Community Shares, the United Negro College Fund and United Way of Greater Cleveland. Tri-C launched the event in 2015 as part of its annual giving campaign to benefit the community. Last year’s race raised $10,000 for the nonprofit agencies.
You can “Change a Child’s Story” on Oct. 24th at the annual CFACC GALA to help support children in foster care. Did you know that more than 3,000 children in Cuyahoga County live in foster care or are in supervised custody because it is not safe for them at home? Child and Family Advocates of Cuyahoga County (CFACC), a Northeast Ohio nonprofit organization serving abused and neglected children involved with the Juvenile Court, invites you to learn how you can “Change a Child’s Story” at their annual GALA benefit set for Thursday, Oct. 24 at Sausalito on Ninth in downtown Cleveland. Change a Child’s Story will take place from 5:30- 9:00 PM and will feature a buffet dinner, live entertainment, the chance to bid on dozens of unique auction and raffle packages, and a 50+ bottle wine pull. Tickets are $50 each; $40 for guests who bring a child’s toy, book(s) or winter clothing item worth $10 or more. Valet parking is included in the ticket price. All proceeds benefit the child-centered intervention programs offered by CFACC. Advance tickets available online: https://conta.cc/2Kb7opn.
The 10th Annual Chagrin Falls Documentary Film Festival is welcoming Cleveland-born filmmaker Todd Thompson back home with a sneak peek of his much-anticipated film, Woman In Motion. The feature documentary chronicles the life of Star Trek's Nichelle Nichols and her daunting task to launch a national blitz for NASA, enlisting 8,000 of the nation's best and brightest astronaut recruits, including the first women, African Americans, Asians and other minorities, to fly in space.
Saturday, August 24th was a spectacularly beautiful day for a parade in Parma's Ukrainian Village to celebrate Ukrainian independence, just as it was 10 years ago in the Fall of 2009 when the Ukrainian Village neighborhood was dedicated. We were there back then to cover the event for the very first issue of the Parma Observer, so I feel a personal connection, as Ukrainian Village and the Parma Observer have grown together. The success of this neighborhood in Parma since 2009 is more than obvious, and I am proud to live in a city where dedicated people like those in Ukrainian Village demonstrate their ability to create such an attractive district.
Parma got its turn on the “Ohio Promise” tour recently, as State Representative Jeffrey Crossman conducted a Town Hall event at the Parma Library on Snow Road. The Ohio Promise tour this summer, led by Democratic legislators from the Ohio House of Representatives, has focused on explaining the legislative wins from the state’s $70 Billion biennium budget for Ohio House Districts like Parma.
Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C®) will showcase the work of two evocative Northeast Ohio artists — Justin Brennan and Dana Depew — during a month long exhibit at Western Campus.
Eight students from Parma Observer communities have been selected for Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C®) Honors Program Fellowships, which offer high-achieving students scholarships to cover tuition, fees and books as they work toward an associate degree.
For years, Parma residents have driven past a blank fence on Brookpark Road near the exit ramp of 176 North and probably have not paid much attention to it. Now the fence beams with a colorful design and social media-inspired message: “#MeetmeinParma.”