GALION — There was plenty of fun to be had last summer in Galion. From outdoor sports, to weekends at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, to festivals, fairs, Third Fridays in Galion and more, area residents were entertained.
On the first Wednesday of July, we reported on a new Crawford Park District event, a Civil War re-enactment at Unger Park in Bucyrus. The new program gave area resident a chance to get up close and personal with re-enactors familiar with how men, women and families coped during the Civil War. It is expected to return this year.
The very next weekend, local model aircraft hobbyists host an event that celebrate the area’s best RC pilots and the hobby of model aviation. The 2019 RattFest Summer Fly-In brought together members of a local Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) club, Eagle Squadron RC, and the public to enjoy model aviation. All of the action took place at the Eagle Squadron RC Field in Galion, 1999 Fairview Road, and included activities such as night flying, an RC plane paintball shoot and more. The event was open to the public.
The Pickle Run Festival also made another appearance in Heise Park. There were games, fundraisers, and lots of food, music. Rain was an issue last summer, but the event draws some of the largest crowds to Galion each year.
The Crawford County Fair also had another run in 2019. It also was affected by Mother Nature as extreme heat and heavy rain affected attendance. For the first time, there were no carnival rides, a disappointment to visitors. Rebecca Miller, secretary/manager of the fair board explained: “The ride company we had last year wanted $20,000 just to come to the fair, plus what-ever they made here,” Miller said. “We couldn’t pay them $20,000. We’re a nonprofit, so obviously we don’t have the $20,000 that we could just hand over for that. We felt if we paid the $20,000 for the ride company, we would have had to raise the gate prices and nobody wants that.“So we decided to go a different route,” Miller said that week. “We got inflatables, a rock climbing wall and a trampoline jump. We also have putt-putt and laser tag and we have a free tiger show that takes place two times a day.”
Also in July, the Galion City Health Department started testing and providing treatment for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). HIV testing, including referral services for positive results and PrEP, pre-exposure prophylaxis, for clients at high risk for HIV, is now available locally. Sexually transmitted infections are the most prevalent communicable disease type in Galion, and many people do not know that they are infected. Call 419-468-1075 for more information.
The Galion Graders completed another season in Galion. But they struggled from the start and finished at just 11-29, the worst record in the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League. They did not qualify for the playoffs.
The Galion Historical Society has been working on its Veteran Banner project since November of 2017. In May 2018, society members, former members, and others in the Galion Community were able to sponsor 123 banners for local veterans. Another 157 banners were included in the 2019 project. Plans for 2020 banners involve hanging 212 new banners. Last July, the Galion Historical Society hosted a program recognizing the veterans who were honored in the 2019 banner project. More than 150 veterans, friends, and family members attended the ceremony at Historic Grace Church.
On July 28, the Gill House and the group Preserving Galion, hosted their first “Henry Ford Birthday Celebration” at the Gill House. It was based on the unique connections between Galion, the early days of the automobile industry, and the visits to town of Ford. According to Gill family descendants, Ford and Bloomer Gill were friends and business associates, and Ford was one of the first persons seen driving a “horseless carriage” around the streets of Galion.
In August, the high school sports season started up again. One change for Galion included the re-formation of a girls golf team for the Tigers. Galion teams had a great fall campaign and came home with lots of championship hardware.
Also, Galion-area residents lined up by the hundreds to celebrate the 100th anniversary of a special military convoy. In 1919, to celebrate the victory in World War I, a military convoy traveled across the Lincoln Highway, from the East Coast to the West Coast. Galion, being located on the Lincoln Highway at that time, was one of the convoy’s stops, as it was in 2009 on the 90th anniversary of this special celebration. That convoy rolled through Galion on Saturday, Aug. 17.
The final Third Friday in Galion event for 2019 was Aug. 16 and included another large gathering of area residents who enjoyed food, music and much more. It also was the conclusion of the annual Stuff the Bus campaign. Miranda Jones, of the Galion-Crestline Chamber of Commerce, said the Third Friday events and Stuff the Bus have grown each year. The supplies collected go to students at Galion City Schools and Galion St. Joseph’s. “We now have about 25 Galion businesses that have boxes they are using to collect school for supplies. We’ll have the school bus up at the square and the businesses can bring their supplies up. I think it’s important that we support our teachers.”
Another Art Walk in Historic Uptowne Galion was a big success as more than a dozen artists showed off their work. The walk was hosted by the Brush and Palette Art Gallery. Carol Kable, a co-director of the gallery and president of the Brush and Palette Art Association, said a lot of work goes into hosting the event, but it provides the group a chance to show off some of the amazing artists within the group.
The Galion Historical Society had its first “Exposition of the Mystical and Paranormal.” It was successful enough that the Galion Historical Society is considering a similar event this year. The two-part event at Brownella Cottage was a fundraiser for the Galion Historical Society and included food, vendors and a program by a para-normal investigative. It drew people from several states.
Another new event in Galion last summer were the ‘Swinging on the Porch’ concerts at Galion’s Gill House. One featured an afternoon of jazz music performed by members of the Richland Academy Performing Arts Big Band, directed by Paul Martin.The concerts are another way to bring public awareness to the restoration project going on at The Gill House. Brian Treisch, a board member of Preserving Galion, Inc., which owns The Gill House, said the group is having events to promote the fundraising efforts.
Food, fun, rides, games and music came together at the end of the month as the Galion Oktoberfest — after a one-year absence — returned to the streets of Historic Uptowne Galion. “I think it was excellent,” said Jim Hedges, Oktoberfest Committee chairman. “It was unbelievable. There were so many highlights it’s hard to hit on just one. I think the whole thing was a big highlight. People came up because we didn’t have it last year and they were excited.” The committee made some changes that seemed to please festival-goers. “The way we did the kids’ rides, so they were all in the same area, was a good move. The stage on the square was a big hit. … I can’t ever remember seeing that many people up town. Everybody liked the variety of food. We had 25 food vendors, and a lot of people liked the craft tent,” Hedges added.
Also in August, Galion and Crawford County officials, gathered for a ground-breaking ceremony for a new apartment complex called “The Greens at Carter” north of the Drug Mart plaza, near the Galion City Schools campus. The complex is being constructed by Five Galion LLC, owned by Canton-based real estate developer Grant Giltz, who built the Drug Mart plaza. “We’re breaking ground today on 36 apartment units, two buildings consisting of 18 units each with the combination of one- and two-bedroom, a full bath, nine-foot tall ceilings … everything you’d want to see in a nice apartment community,” Giltz said that day. “This location, we feel, is the heart of Galion. It’s right near all the school buildings, shopping, close to the highway and the newly widened Portland Way. We look forward to completing our project and we hope to have it complete by June (2020).”
This Young fan as well-prepared for the roar of engines at last yea OSTPA tractor pull at the Crawford County Fair Her seat along the fence was one of the best … and one of the noisiest. See more fairs from the 2019 fair in our online galleries at www.galioninquirer.com
The annual PB&J (Prescious and Beloved by Jesus) baseball tournament was last year at Heise Park. Family, friends and many others showed up to watch the action. There was lots of good sportsmanship and plenty of smiles.
Galion City Schools fall sports season kicked off in August. It was one of the best campaigns in a long time. The Galion golf team hosted its annual Galion Invitation at Sycamore Creek Golf Course and won a title, too.
When all was said and done in the 18-hole tourney, Galion would once again find themselves champions, tallying a team score of 324. With the victory, the Tigers have sat atop the leader board for four consecutive seasons and five times in head coach Bryce Lehman’s tenure with the team (eight seasons).
The Wooster Generals clocked in as the runner-ups on the day, 40 strokes behind the Tigers at 364. Rounding out the scoring in the field were: 3. Upper Sandusky Rams- 366; 4. Madison Rams- 373; 5. Centerburg Trojans- 376; 6. Clear Fork Colts- 385; 7. Bucyrus Redmen- 399 and 8. Mansfield Senior Tygers- 438.
Brett Montgomery of Upper, reigning Northern-10 Athletic Conference golfer of the year three years running, was the medalist. Montgomery shot a 35 on the front-nine and a 37 on the back-nine to finish with a 72, outlasting the Galion tandem of Spencer Keller and Matthew McMullen. Keller and McMullen each turned in scores of 74 , with identical front-nine and back-nine scores of 38 and 36.
Kids in Crawford County made their way to Lowe-Volk Park for the Crawford Park District’s annual Water Carnival.
Galion’s Braxton Tate set a new school cross county record when he won his race at Galion’s annual Cross Country Festival. His new school record time was 15:26.8, just a precurser of things to come for the Galion runner.
A new event last summer for the Crawford Park District was a Civil War re-enactment held at Unger Park in Bucyrus.