Making the difference in meeting lifelong needs • www.portagedd.org
Volume 19, Issue 4
Portage County Board of
Dennis M. Coble
2606 Brady Lake Rd.
Ravenna, OH 44266-1657
Service & Support
7008 State Rte. 88
Ravenna, OH 44266-9134
Happy Day School
2500 Brady Lake Rd.
Ravenna, OH 44266-1698
Hiram Farm Living and Learning Community
Helps Participants Grow
“Hiram Farm embraces ‘gentle
teaching’ philosophies which include
ensuring that the individuals feel
unconditionaly valued everyday and
learn how to unconditionaly value
others. These can be things that
do not come naturally to those
with Autism Spectrum Disorders.
They work to create a peaceful
enviornment for individuals to
practice these skills throughout
their work day.” For more info call
330 569-3441 or visit their website
Shawn McKinney has been attending the day program at Hiram Farm Living and Learning Community
since June 2009. The program initially started with six participants and has now grown to twenty-three.
In those three years, Shawn has learned many new skills related to working on a farm; including planting
and harvesting vegetables, and caring for farm animals. His favorite activities include just about anything
related to getting to use a hose, such as giving water to the
animals or caring for them. He has also learned to use wood
working tools to make crafts such as bird feeders or candle
holders. In this picture, he is bottle feeding a new calf on the
farm. The calves are the newest animals on the farm, which also
include pigs, sheep, rabbits, ducks, and chickens.
Summer or winter, warm or cool, rain or shine, Shawn enjoys
going to the farm every day. He wears his work boots, takes his
work gloves, and rides one of the two Hiram Farm vans back
and forth from home. He enjoys the physical activity, the animal
care, the work and the relationships he has developed there.
This environment has been fantastic for Shawn! His family has
seen his language and social skills grow, he is losing weight from daily physical activity, and his behavior
management meds have been reduced significantly. Shawn is a happy guy with meaningful work and is
grateful for Hiram Farm.
Hiram Farm is a community project born out of the desire to provide inspiration and meaningful work for
the individual growth of people with Autism Spectrum Disorders.
This adult day program and organic farm is located on 120 acres on the southwest corner of Rt. 82 and
Rt. 700 in Hiram, Ohio.
PCBDD does not discriminate in
provision of services or employment
because of handicap, race, color,
creed, national origin, sex or age.
www.portagedd.org • October 2012 • Volume 19, Issue 4
Department News From Around the PCBDD
Happy Day School
The beginning of the school year has started off with a bang!
Everyone at HDS was excited and pleased about the parking lot
repaving and exterior lighting upgrades and hope that families see
the improvement as well! Although we had to delay the start of school
by one day, it was well-worth it!
We are at full capacity this fall with two preschool classrooms,
three full school-age classrooms and eleven, large Early Intervention
All of our classrooms are up and rolling. They are talking about
all kinds of things- families, fall activities, getting to know each other.
They are working hard on language and self-help and independence.
We also have offered Kindermusik again for 6 weeks to our Early
Intervention students and their families- it’s wonderful to see families
interacting with their child!
We also welcome Early Head Start with three classes in our
building this year. We have had a positive relationship with them and
have learned to collaborate together on children that we both serve.
The Parent Council Silent Auction and Craft show is soon
approaching on Saturday, October 20 th from 9:00 – 3:00 pm. We
have everything- baskets, concessions, kid’s korner, apple
dumplings, and vendors! We hope that families can stop out and visit
and support the auction!
Also, we are beginning to think about Parent Conferences,
Thanksgiving activities and Holiday programs. Lastly, we have had
some major changes in the kitchen this year. With the fight on
obesity, the Ohio department of Education and the US Department
of Agriculture have issued strict guidelines on portion control,
minimizing sweets and calorie limits during the week! We are
working hard at complying with the regulations and still meeting the
needs of our students.
Director of Children’s Services
On Monday September 17th, we began the implementation of
our new Refresh Project here at Portage Industries. The Refresh
Project involves offering individuals several options for services
throughout the day here at PI. One of the main activities prior to the
initiation of this project was to offer individuals and their families the
opportunity to let us know what type of services in which they wish
to be engaged.
Several months ago, surveys were sent to everyone attending
PI, asking about individual preferences with regards to work and
activities. Based on survey responses, individuals were assigned to
different programming areas/ groups. These groups include
activities only groups, production only groups and groups where
individuals engage in production and activities. We hope that this
change will provide more options and satisfaction for the people
that attend our day program.
It is our belief that our program will be stronger if we can offer a
variety of services versus offering only vocational opportunities.
We know that this change may bring challenges, but the PI
administrative team is highly confident that everyone will rise to the
occasion and make this project succeed.
I also wanted to address some concerns that have been raised
regarding Portage Industries, Inc. opening a facility in Ravenna.
Several individuals and parents have expressed concern that
this move will mean that we will have no work here at Portage
Industries. I want to assure you that this is not true. We will have
work here at Portage Industries just as we have in the past. While
work may come and go due to the economy or the gain or loss of
a particular job, there is no plan to remove all work from Portage
Director of Adult Services
• Watch for Information on the Knights of Columbus Basketball
shoot out which will be sent home soon
• Session II bowling will be starting up in January 2013, more
information will be sent home in November
Congratulations to Adam Derthick
for a great first year showing market
pigs at the Randolph Fair. Adam
is a 10 year old 5 th grade boy with
Cerebral Palsy and developmental
delays. Adam was born 4 months
pre-mature and weighed 1 pound 5
ounces. Adam went through the Early
Intervention (EI) and Pre-school
programs at Happy Day School and
then continued onto J.A. Garfield
Schools. Today he is very active and
participates in many activities with his classmates and now 4-H members.
Adam showed his Hampshire Pig, Beethoven, in the Lightweight Division. This division
consists of pigs weighing between 175-229 pounds. There were four classes within the
Lightweight Division, a winner in each class was chosen, and then returned for the final class
to determine the Lightweight Division Champion. That champion would then compete for the
Grand and Reserve Grand Champion Market Hog. Adam won his class and returned for the
Division Champion class. Adam won the Division and was able to compete in the Champion
of Champions class. When Adam won the Lightweight Division there was not a dry eye in the
stands. Everyone cheered! They were so excited for him.
Adam was the youngest amongst the top four division winners to compete for Grand and
Reserve Champion. Even though Adam did not win Grand or Reserve Champion Market Hog
he ended up overall 5th out of 158 pigs that competed at the fair - quite an accomplishment
within itself for the first year!
There were so many people that were so proud of Adam and his accomplishments in his
first year that he reminded everyone what 4-H is about….. Watching the kids be successful,
the responsibility that is needed to keep accurate records to raise and show an animal and
most of all having fun!
Christina Miller takes first place in two events
On August 18, 2012, Christina Miller competed in the
Pegasus Farm Horse Show and she received two 1 st place
trophies and one 3 rd place. Christina has been riding at
Pegasus for 24 years.
On August 26,
Christina participated in
the Dress a Cow Contest
at the Portage County
Randolph Fair. Her
“Sponge Bob Square
Cow” earned her a 3 rd
for Portage County
Parent Council is for anyone with
connections to residents in Portage County who
have developmental disabilities. Family, friends,
teachers and providers are all included.
Meetings are held the second Monday of
each Month at 6:30 p.m. at Happy Day School
(HDS) in the lounge. Scheduled community
activities include the Craft Show and Auction on
October 20, 2012 at HDS from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.,
Santa’s Shop in December at HDS and Portage
Industries (PI), The Rummage Sale on March 9,
2013 at PI from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., the Community
Carnival on April 13, 2013 at HDS from 1 p.m. to
4 p.m. and the May Dinner at HDS on May 14,
2013 at 6 p.m.
The unique opportunities and unique
concerns of people closely connected to
individuals with developmental delays are
supported by this caring organization. Fresh
ideas for sharing and learning are always
welcomed. To become involved or to share
thoughts about how to reach out to the
community, please call Debbie Kempisty at
HDS or Annette Dowling at 330 297-0302.
Coleman Adult Day Services will host a
dance at 6695 N. Chestnut St., Ravenna
on November 8 th from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
There will be a country western theme
dance at Happy Day School on November
16, 2012 from 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
2606 Brady Lake Road
Ravenna, OH 44266-1657
October 19, 2012 Agency In-Service & Staff Recognition Programs Closed
October 20, 2012 Craft Auction at Happy Day School 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
October 22, 2012 Programs Resume
November 14, 2012 Board Meeting 5:30 p.m. Dennis M. Coble Administration Building
November 22 - 23, 2012 Thanksgiving Break
November 26, 2012 Programs Resume
December 14, 2012 In-ServiceAdult Services Program Closed
December 17, 2012 Programs Resume
December 19, 2012 Board Meeting 5:30 p.m. Dennis M. Coble Administration Building
December 24 – 31, 2012 Winter Break
January 1, 2013 New Year’s Day
January 2, 2013 Programs Resume
The mission of the Portage County Board of Developmental Disabilities is to ensure the availability of programs, services, and
supports that assist eligible individuals with developmental disabilities in choosing and achieving a life of increasing capability such that
they can live, work, and socialize in the community, and to assist and support the families of these individuals in achieving this objective.