REPORTERS NOTEBOOK: Sandusky church makes a difference

SANDUSKY The project of a local church was among 10 chosen from more than 1,000 to be honored by Gov
Sandusky Register Staff
May 24, 2010



The project of a local church was among 10 chosen from more than 1,000 to be honored by Gov. Ted Strickland recently.

The Ohio State University head football coach Jim Tressel and his wife, Ellen, honored outstanding Make A Difference Day Ohio projects. The projects included First Presbyterian Church's comfort pillows, made for residents of the Ohio Veterans Home.

For more than a month, volunteers from the church and community, from the Girl Scouts, Boys and Girls Club, and Juvenile Justice Center cut, tied, stuffed, and finished over 500 pillows in Americana and camouflage designs. On Make a Difference Day in October, the church delivered about 450 pillows to residents. Volunteers also spent time playing bingo with residents, socializing and making holiday cards for soldiers.

I had a chance to witness this project in action, and it was quite impressive.

Kudos to First Presbyterian Church and all the volunteers involved.

-- Annie Zelm

Bar owners light up to protest law

Local bar owners Paul Hauke and Joe Jenkins were at the municipal building in Findlay about two weeks ago, supporting a fellow bar owner charged with violating Ohio's ban on smoking, when they decided an act of civil disobedience was in order.

They both lit cigarettes during the hearing.

Hauke, owner of Lake Wilmer Inn, and Jenkins, owner of Knucklehead Saloon in Huron, wanted to dramatize that there's little anyone can do if somebody chooses to smoke. They contend it's unfair to punish tavern owners if a patron chooses to smoke.

Ironically, Hauke doesn't smoke and didn't really know what he was doing.

It was "the first cigarette in my whole life," he said. "I didn't inhale."

-- Tom Jackson

The Register's rover, er, roving reporter

I spent a long seven hours this week waiting on jury deliberations in the Ottawa County Courthouse.

As you can imagine, it's nice to break up such stints with friendly banter with everyone else stuck on the third floor.

A chat with attorney Tom DeBacco produced this nugget.

Tom often represents defendants in Erie County courts, the turf of my co-worker Mike Fitzpatrick.

Tom said he likes Mike's work, but finds the trendy, bespectacled reporter reminds him of his youth outside of Latrobe, Pa., where his father rented some properties. One tenant was a guy whose last name was Fitzpatrick. He had a giant St. Bernard, who slobbered through each summer, and plowed, mouth open, through mounds of snow each winter.

The dog's name was Mike.

-- Sarah Weber