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Groveport Messenger - January 9th, 2022

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<strong>Messenger</strong><br />

<strong>Groveport</strong><br />

<strong>January</strong> 9-22, <strong>2022</strong> www.columbusmessenger.com Vol. XXXIX, No. 15<br />

Portier passes away<br />

By Rick Palsgrove<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Editor<br />

Former <strong>Groveport</strong> Police Chief Ralph<br />

Portier passed away Dec. 31 after an illness.<br />

He was 71.<br />

“Chief Portier was a very special person,”<br />

said <strong>Groveport</strong> Mayor Lance Westcamp. “He<br />

was a great leader, mentor, friend and a<br />

very caring person. He was all about family<br />

and community. The <strong>Groveport</strong> Police<br />

Department is so respected because of the<br />

leadership skills Chief Portier brought with<br />

him. He never met a stranger. Chief Portier<br />

always said he was truly blessed to work in<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong>. As mayor of the city, we were the<br />

ones who were truly blessed to have him as PORTIER<br />

our police chief.”<br />

Portier had a 50 year career of service in fire, EMS, and law<br />

enforcement. He began as police chief in <strong>Groveport</strong> in 2009 and<br />

served until he retired in April 2021.<br />

“Chief Ralph Portier was an individual who believed in making<br />

sure everyone he came in contact with should be treated with fairness<br />

and a smile, whether in a general encounter, or in our official<br />

capacity as a police officer,” said current <strong>Groveport</strong> Police Chief<br />

Casey Adams. “There was not a day that went by that our officers<br />

and city officials did not hear how a citizen or visitor to our community<br />

somehow knew Chief Portier from his days as a public servant<br />

in Guernsey County, to his time as a police officer and supervisor<br />

in the city of Pickerington, and the countless individuals<br />

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and police officers he touched through<br />

his instructional training throughout<br />

Ohio on taking care of ourselves in the<br />

policing community.”<br />

Adams said the <strong>Groveport</strong> Police<br />

Department and the city of <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

lost a true ambassador of the community.<br />

“Chief Portier invested each and<br />

every day of his service to our community<br />

to making sure people came first,<br />

and he always spoke how <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

welcomed him with open arms from<br />

day one and he felt like this was his<br />

home and not just a place to work,”<br />

said Adams.<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> City Councilman and former<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> police officer Shawn<br />

Cleary recalls he and Westcamp interviewing<br />

Portier for the job as chief.<br />

“I remember feeling right away he<br />

was a perfect fit for the <strong>Groveport</strong>,”<br />

said Cleary. “His commitment ot the<br />

citizens of <strong>Groveport</strong> went beyond<br />

expectations. He quickly earned the<br />

trust of the citizens and officers. This is<br />

a tragic loss for the community and the<br />

Portier family.”<br />

Adams said Portier never made any<br />

excuses to take time away from his job<br />

during his health struggles.<br />

See PORTIER, page 3<br />

The old and the new<br />

Hometown Realtor<br />

Marylee Bendig<br />

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<strong>Messenger</strong> photo by Rick Palsgrove<br />

A worker installs window frames on the 12,184 square foot Wert’s Grove building, located at 480 Main St.,<br />

as next door the bell tower and steeple of the historic <strong>Groveport</strong> United Methodist Church, built in 1908,<br />

can be seen. Construction is progressing on the Wert’s Grove building and the 14,145 square foot Rarey’s<br />

Port building, located at 674 Main St. The buildings are part of the city of <strong>Groveport</strong>’s $7.6 million 1847<br />

Main Project. Construction is expected to be completed on the buildings in the spring of <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

Restaurants will occupy the lower levels of the Wert’s Grove and Rarey’s Port buildings. They include:<br />

Delaney’s Diner – a breakfast, lunch, brunch restaurant in the Rarey’s Port building; Preston’s: A Burger<br />

Joint and Honey’s Fried Chicken, in the Wert’s Grove building; and Mmelo Confectionary & Café – a highend<br />

chocolates and confections place that also offers breads and pastries, a full lunch and dinner menu,<br />

and coffee and espresso – in the Wert’s Grove building.<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Madison<br />

attains “C” ranking<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Madison Schools attained a “C” ranking on the state<br />

of Ohio’s Revised State Accountability System, according to district<br />

officials.<br />

State Report Cards were released in October for the 2020-21<br />

school year. <strong>Groveport</strong> Madison Schools officials said, because of<br />

the impact of COVID-19 on schools, the report cards were “significantly<br />

different from those of the past and did not include rankings<br />

for grades for schools or school districts. While the measures<br />

are different for the 2020-21 school year (and will be different for<br />

the 2021-22 school year), the Ohio Department of Education indicated<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Madison’s ranking as “Moderate — C” on the<br />

revised accountability system.”<br />

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P097136.1


PAGE 2 - GROVEPORT MESSENGER - <strong>January</strong> 9, <strong>2022</strong><br />

GriefShare group<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> United Methodist Church, 512 Main St., sponsors a<br />

GriefShare group commencing Feb. 17 at 7 p.m. Register online at<br />

www.griefshare.org/groups/144263.<br />

Email groveportgriefsharegroup@gmail.com for information.<br />

www.columbusmessenger.com<br />

Photo courtesy of the Cruiser Theater Company<br />

Aidan Kennedy, who portrays Sherlock Holmes, posing on an antique sofa being used in the set during<br />

a recent rehearsal.<br />

Show is “fast paced” and “magical”<br />

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<strong>Groveport</strong> Editor<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Madison High School’s Cruiser<br />

Theatre Company will bring a new twist on a timeless<br />

classic.<br />

The theatre troupe will present “Sherlock Holmes<br />

and the Case of the Christmas Carol,” by John<br />

Longenbaugh on Jan. 21 and 22 at 7 p.m. both nights<br />

in the <strong>Groveport</strong> Madison High School auditorium,<br />

4475 S. Hamilton Road.<br />

Tickets are available online and at the door. Buy<br />

online and it’s $7 general admission or $5 for students<br />

and seniors. At the door all prices increase by<br />

$2. Visit cruisertheatre.weebly.com for information.<br />

“At this time, we are planning to have live, in person<br />

audiences in the <strong>Groveport</strong> Madison High School<br />

performing arts center,” said Erin McLaughlin,<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Madison High School theatre director.<br />

“Seating will be assigned and socially distanced by<br />

family group and masks will be required. As always,<br />

the situation is fluid and COVID protocols may be<br />

subject to change.”<br />

About the show<br />

“(Charles Dickens’ ‘A Christmas Carol,’ is a timeless<br />

classic that has a special place in many of our<br />

hearts and as I was considering what shows to produce<br />

this school year, I couldn't get the idea of ‘A<br />

Christmas Carol’ out of my head,” said McLaughlin.<br />

“Myriad stage adaptations of this story exist, and I<br />

perused several of them, but script after script<br />

proved unsuitable due to logistics or being too musically<br />

demanding or because I simply didn’t like the<br />

way it was written. Then I stumbled across this masterpiece,<br />

and within the first few lines I knew<br />

‘Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Christmas<br />

Carol,’ was the one. Victorian British literature is<br />

my favorite,and crime and detective media are<br />

increasingly popular in this modern age.”<br />

She said the script seamlessly blends the story of<br />

“A Christmas Carol” with characters and plot elements<br />

from Sherlock Holmes.<br />

“It’s fast-paced and fluid and positively magical,”<br />

said McLaughlin, who said she considers the play to<br />

be a drama. “However, there is certainly humor<br />

throughout.”<br />

She said Aidan Kennedy is appearing as Sherlock<br />

Holmes in the show.<br />

“He’s doing an incredible job bringing his character<br />

to life and memorizing all of his lines,” said<br />

McLaughlin.<br />

Challenges for actors and crew<br />

“There are no scene breaks in this show, it flows<br />

start to finish with no acts or scenes marked in the<br />

script,” said McLaughlin. “Once he comes onstage,<br />

Sherlock Holmes only leaves once, towards the very<br />

end, for perhaps 90 seconds and then he’s back on<br />

again.”<br />

She said the show challenges the cast and crew<br />

with the need to show various locations and transition<br />

between them quickly and seamlessly, which is<br />

a technical challenge.<br />

“We’re also planning to use fog machines in this<br />

show, which I have not done before.” said<br />

McLaughlin. “I believe ‘The Little Mermaid’ was the<br />

last time the Cruiser Theatre Company used such<br />

technology.”<br />

Other upcoming performances<br />

This season, the Cruiser Theatre Company will<br />

also present: “Goodness Gracious,” by Hank (Henry)<br />

Kimmel as the Cruiser Theatre Company’s “Play-ina-Day”<br />

on Feb. 19 at 7 p.m.; and “Fiddler on the Roof’<br />

as the spring musical on April 7-10 at 7 p.m.<br />

Thursday-Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday matinee). All<br />

performances will be in the <strong>Groveport</strong> Madison High<br />

School auditorium, 4475 S. Hamilton Road.


www.columbusmessenger.com<br />

columbusmessenger.com<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Garden Club<br />

The <strong>Groveport</strong> Garden Club meets the<br />

first Tuesday each month (unless otherwise<br />

announced) at <strong>Groveport</strong> Zion<br />

Lutheran Church, 6014 <strong>Groveport</strong> Road.<br />

Anyone interested in gardening welcome.<br />

Call Marylee Bendig at (614) 218-1097.<br />

PORTIER<br />

Continued from page 1<br />

“He showed up each and every day giving<br />

it his all, and he made sure that his<br />

officers came first,” said Adams. “Even<br />

after he retired earlier in 2021, he still<br />

loved to stop by the police department,<br />

send out a text or email, or just make a<br />

phone call and tell us how he loved each<br />

and everyone of us. He always asked how<br />

we were doing personally, he wanted to<br />

make sure we watched out for each other,<br />

and that we took time each and every day<br />

to have quality family time.”<br />

When he was hired in 2009, Portier was<br />

only the fifth police chief in the town’s history<br />

as prior to 1966 <strong>Groveport</strong> was served<br />

by a single town marshal. In 1966<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> created its own police department<br />

and its first chief was Al Whipple,<br />

who served until 1981. The other police<br />

chiefs were: Roger Adams from 1981 to<br />

2001; Timothy Carney from 2002-03; Bary<br />

Murphy from 2003-06; and Gary York<br />

from 2006-09.<br />

Madison Township takes financial steps<br />

Fire station named for Dildine<br />

By Linda Dillman<br />

Staff Writer<br />

The Madison Township trustees took<br />

some financial actions for <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

On Dec. 28, the trustees approved temporary<br />

appropriations for <strong>2022</strong> and set the<br />

salaries and health care/life benefits for<br />

elected officials at Ohio Revised Code<br />

statutory limits.<br />

According to a chart supplied by<br />

Madison Township Administrator Susan<br />

Brobst, trustee compensation per day–not<br />

to exceed 200 days per year–is now<br />

$121.52, which is $24,304 per year and distributed<br />

on a monthly basis.<br />

In 2021, the per day pay was $119.43.<br />

The <strong>2022</strong> pay reflects a 1.75 percent<br />

increase.<br />

The compensation for the township fiscal<br />

officer for <strong>2022</strong> is $33,297 and reflects<br />

the same 1.75 percent increase from 2021.<br />

According to the Ohio Revised Code,<br />

township trustee and fiscal officer salaries<br />

are based on the township’s annual budget.<br />

The trustees also approved a one-year<br />

contract, not to exceed $9,400, with<br />

Easterday’s Cleaning Service for cleaning<br />

the police department building.<br />

Fire station named for Dildine<br />

Retiring Madison Township Trustee Ed<br />

Dildine, who spent 12 years as a Madison<br />

Township trustee and 40 years as a township<br />

firefighter, was honored during his<br />

final meeting with the news that a township<br />

firehouse now bears his name.<br />

Cruiser students at Ohio Model UN event<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Madison High School<br />

students participated in the Ohio<br />

Model United Nations event from<br />

Dec. 5-7 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel<br />

in Columbus.<br />

The Ohio Model United Nations is<br />

a three-day simulation program where student<br />

delegates represent selected member<br />

nations of the United Nations and participate<br />

in writing, presenting, and debating<br />

resolutions that deal with current world<br />

problems, issues, and political situations.<br />

Student delegates participate<br />

in global education contests, talent<br />

showcases, and serve as student<br />

leaders of the program.<br />

This year, according to <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Madison Schools officials, <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Madison students wrote resolutions and<br />

represented the countries of Sri Lanka, the<br />

Dominican Republic, and Guatemala.<br />

<strong>January</strong> 9, <strong>2022</strong> - GROVEPORT MESSENGER - PAGE 3<br />

Trustee Chairman John Pritchard told<br />

Dildine that Madison Township Station<br />

183, located in an area where the retired<br />

firefighter started his career, will now be<br />

called Edward Dildine Station 183.<br />

“You are like a father to me,” Trustee<br />

Michele Reynolds told Dildine and added it<br />

was a privilege to serve alongside him.<br />

She then presented him with a certificate<br />

from the governor recognizing the station<br />

dedication as well as Dildine’s work<br />

and dedication to the township and community.<br />

“On behalf of the fire department I<br />

thank you for all of your 40 years as a firefighter<br />

and 12 years as a trustee,” said<br />

Madison Township Fire Chief Derek<br />

Robinson. “You played such an important<br />

role in having that (station) built.”<br />

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<strong>Groveport</strong><br />

BEST COMMUNITY NEWSPAPER in <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Starting December 12, 2021<br />

Pick-Up At These<br />

Locations:<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Senior Village - 5124 Hendron<br />

Madison Township Office - 4575 Madison Lane<br />

Paddock Pub/<strong>Groveport</strong> Golf Ctr. - 1005 Richardson Rd.<br />

Southeast Library - 3980 S. Hamilton Rd.<br />

Asbury Methodist Church - 4760 Winchester Pike<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Municipal Building - 655 Blacklick St.<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Town Hall - 648 Main St.<br />

Dollar General Store - <strong>Groveport</strong> Rd. & Route 317<br />

Flyers PIzza/<strong>Groveport</strong> - 296 Main St.<br />

Ace Hardware - 726 Main St.<br />

Little Italy Pizza - 619 Main St.<br />

Huntington Bank/<strong>Groveport</strong> - 556 Main St.<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Recreation Center - 7370 <strong>Groveport</strong> Rd.<br />

READ US ONLINE: www.columbusmessenger.com


PAGE 4 - GROVEPORT MESSENGER - <strong>January</strong> 9, <strong>2022</strong><br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> history films<br />

Two documentary films on the history<br />

of <strong>Groveport</strong>, produced by the <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Heritage Society and Midnet Media, are<br />

now available for viewing online on<br />

YouTube.<br />

The films are: “<strong>Groveport</strong>: A Town and<br />

Its People” and “The Story of John S.<br />

Rarey and Cruiser.”<br />

Letters policy<br />

The <strong>Groveport</strong> <strong>Messenger</strong> welcomes letters<br />

to the editor. Letters cannot be libelous. Letters<br />

that do not have a signature, address, and telephone<br />

number, or are signed with a pseudonym,<br />

will be rejected. PLEASE BE BRIEF AND TO<br />

THE POINT. The <strong>Messenger</strong> reserves the right<br />

to edit or refuse publication of any letter for any<br />

reason. Opinions expressed in the letters are not<br />

necessarily the views of the <strong>Messenger</strong>. Mail letters<br />

to: <strong>Groveport</strong> <strong>Messenger</strong>, 3500 Sullivant<br />

Avenue, Columbus, OH 43204; or by email to<br />

southeast@columbusmessenger.com.<br />

southeast<br />

<strong>Messenger</strong><br />

(Distribution: 8,000)<br />

Rick Palsgrove ...................................<strong>Groveport</strong> Editor<br />

southeast@columbusmessenger.com<br />

Published every other Sunday by<br />

The Columbus <strong>Messenger</strong> Co.<br />

3500 Sullivant Ave., Columbus, Ohio 43204-1887<br />

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any advertisement or editorial copy at any time. The company is not<br />

responsible for checking accuracy of items submitted for publication.<br />

Errors in advertising copy must be called to the attention of the company<br />

after first insertion and prior to a second insertion of the same advertising<br />

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www.columbusmessenger.com<br />

Post war growth in <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

From its beginnings in the early 1800s,<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> grew relatively slowly up until<br />

after World War II.<br />

Even when technological changes came<br />

to town in the early 20th century - such as<br />

the telephone, cars, and electricity -<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> remained a small farming town.<br />

That changed rapidly in the years<br />

immediately following World War II.<br />

Those post war years saw a dramatic<br />

increase in population and urban growth<br />

throughout the country. According to the<br />

U. S. Census, <strong>Groveport</strong>’s population in the<br />

mid-1940s was a little over 1,000 people.<br />

By 1960 the village had doubled in size to a<br />

little over 2,000 people. (By further comparison,<br />

in 2020, <strong>Groveport</strong> is now a city of<br />

more than 6,000 people.)<br />

From its inception in the early 1<strong>9th</strong> century<br />

until 1945, <strong>Groveport</strong>’s town borders<br />

were compact with the northern border at<br />

the railroad tracks, the southern border<br />

along Wirt Road and the former Ohio and<br />

Erie Canal route, the eastern border just<br />

beyond <strong>Groveport</strong> School, and the western<br />

border was essentially the aptly named<br />

West Street (though there were scattered<br />

homes and businesses further along west<br />

Main Street).<br />

The post war period saw vast numbers<br />

of military personnel returning home from<br />

the war and the accompanying “baby<br />

boom” resulted in the need for more housing<br />

nationwide. This lead to the town<br />

annexing more land and looking for new<br />

housing for its growing young families.<br />

In <strong>Groveport</strong> in the post war years, new<br />

neighborhood home construction was platted<br />

at the edges of town in what were then<br />

called “additions.”<br />

Photo courtesy of the <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Heritage Museum<br />

Get ready<br />

to dance<br />

Pictured here are <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Madison High School students<br />

posing with a decorated<br />

jalopy in the fall of 1954.<br />

The car is decorated with<br />

wording advertising the high<br />

school’s upcoming homecoming<br />

dance. Some of the<br />

phrases written on the car<br />

are: “<strong>Groveport</strong> Homecoming<br />

Dance,” “Big Dance,” “You all<br />

come,” “Shake a Leg,” and<br />

“Shake Rattle and Roll.” This<br />

photo proves that <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Madison Cruisers are always<br />

ready “to rock!”<br />

One of the earliest of these annexed<br />

“additions” was Kessler Addition from 1946<br />

to 1952, which includes the areas around<br />

Kessler Street and Madison Street. At the<br />

time, this addition added 29 acres, 66<br />

homes, and 264 people to <strong>Groveport</strong>.<br />

Other annexations followed, including<br />

the Magnolia Addition in 1953, which<br />

includes the Clark Court and Holton Street<br />

area; the Sunrise Addition in 1953, which<br />

includes the Kinsel Avenue area; Hanstein<br />

Place in the early 1960s, which includes<br />

the Delane Road area; and the 200 home<br />

Westport addition in the late 1960s, which<br />

is located west of Tallman Street.<br />

A curiosity about the names of these<br />

post war “additions’ is that few people still<br />

refer to them by their original platted<br />

names. I do recall people making references<br />

to Kessler Addition when I was a kid,<br />

but not to the Magnolia nor Sunrise additions.<br />

It’s interesting that these old names<br />

just did not seem to stick. Compare this to<br />

more recent times when newly built neighborhoods<br />

are called subdivisions instead of<br />

additions with each newly built neighborhood<br />

retaining a distinctive name as a subset<br />

of <strong>Groveport</strong>. These include such relatively<br />

newer neighborhoods as Elmont<br />

Place, Founder’s Bend, Hickory Grove,<br />

Bixby Ridge, Grove Pointe, Bixford Green,<br />

and Newport Village.<br />

Locally, Madison Township also saw a<br />

large jump in population in the post war<br />

years as more homes were built on former<br />

farm lands. The township’s population in<br />

1960 was 8,049, but by 1970 it rose to<br />

17,153.<br />

The combined growth of <strong>Groveport</strong> and<br />

Madison Township meant there were more<br />

Our Pictorial Past by Rick Palsgrove<br />

Editor’s Notebook<br />

students for the<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Madison<br />

Schools, which resulted<br />

in a building<br />

expansion for the district.<br />

Until 1952 there<br />

were only three<br />

school buildings in<br />

the district -<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> School<br />

(housing all 12<br />

grades), Brice<br />

Elementary, and Rick<br />

Edwards Elementary.<br />

I n t e r e s t i n g l y ,<br />

Palsgrove<br />

when the then new<br />

high school (now Middle School Central)<br />

was built between 1952-56 beside<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> School on Main Street, it was<br />

called an “annex” because it was connected<br />

by the overhead walkway between the two<br />

schools, making the two schools essentially<br />

one building. So, technically in the 1950s<br />

there were still just three buildings in the<br />

district until the school building boom of<br />

the 1960s and early 1970s when the district<br />

grew to having 10 buildings - a high<br />

school, three middle schools, and six elementary<br />

schools.<br />

It will be interesting to see how the community<br />

continues to grow and evolve in the<br />

coming years.<br />

Rick Palsgrove is editor of the <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

<strong>Messenger</strong>.


www.columbusmessenger.com<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> abounds in projects<br />

<strong>January</strong> 9, <strong>2022</strong> - GROVEPORT MESSENGER - PAGE 5<br />

By Rick Palsgrove<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Editor<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> city council<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> City Council holds its regular meetings<br />

at 6:30 p.m. on the second and fourth Mondays of the<br />

month. Council holds its committee of the whole meeting<br />

on the third Monday each month at 5:30 p.m.<br />

Meetings are held in the municipal building, 655<br />

Blacklick St., <strong>Groveport</strong>.<br />

Wagnalls Memorial Library<br />

Wagnalls Memorial Library is located at 150 E.<br />

Columbus St., Lithopolis. all (614) 837-4765 or visit<br />

www.wagnalls.org.<br />

The past year was a productive one for the city of<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> as a long list of infrastructure projects were<br />

either completed or are well underway.<br />

The biggest project on last year’s to do list was the<br />

West Bixby Road Rehabilitation Project, Phase 2 with<br />

a cost of $1.5 million, which is a continuation of the<br />

2017 Bixby Road Phase 1 project. The road reconstruction<br />

work for Phase 2 started at the entrance to the<br />

Madison Christian School and extended east a distance<br />

of about 3,500 feet to the entrance to Three<br />

Creeks Metro Park.<br />

According to <strong>Groveport</strong> City Engineer Steve Farst,<br />

the improvements included road reconstruction and<br />

paving, a shared-use path, and a new culvert near<br />

Madison Christian Church under Bixby Road.<br />

Farst said the road handles about 3,000 vehicles a<br />

day and, with future growth in the area, it’s expected<br />

traffic will increase to 4,500 vehicles a day.<br />

Other projects last year:<br />

•$516,000 for the South Hamilton Road at Higgins<br />

Boulevard Phase 2 including turn lanes and traffic signals.<br />

•$160,000 <strong>Groveport</strong> Road at State Route 317 safety<br />

improvement grant preparation (grant application<br />

completed and submitted).<br />

•$400,000 street maintenance program.<br />

•$70,000 for the annual sewer force main replacements<br />

(design underway).<br />

•$50,000 for sidewalk replacements.<br />

•$50,000 golf cart replacement at <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Municipal Golf Course.<br />

•$35,000 curb ramp replacements on Main Street.<br />

•$25,000 traffic signal poles support on Main<br />

Street.<br />

•$13,000 water plant security system and cameras.<br />

•$10,000 fire hydrant upgrades.<br />

Water tank project design postponed<br />

Plans for the design (budgeted at $100,000) of a proposed<br />

new elevated water tank were postponed.<br />

Farst said the city delayed the start of design<br />

because: revenue projections for 2021 were down and<br />

thus the timeline for the tank design was delayed; and<br />

a chance for potential funding assistance for the<br />

design was made available in August 2021, funded by<br />

federal COVID relief funds released to Ohio within a<br />

program known as the Water and Wastewater<br />

Infrastructure Grant program, which was administered<br />

by the Ohio Department of Development.<br />

“An application was filed in September 2021,” said<br />

Farst. “As we needed to know the outcome of our application,<br />

efforts to secure qualifications and proposals<br />

from engineering design firms was put on hold. Results<br />

on the funding applications were revealed by the governor’s<br />

office. The city was not awarded the grant and<br />

thus, in <strong>2022</strong>, activities will resume to select the services<br />

of a design engineer.”<br />

Farst said a site selection evaluation for the proposed<br />

new water tower will be part of the engineering<br />

services. As of now, a site is not yet determined.<br />

The city currently has one operating water tower -<br />

the 53-year-old, 200,000 gallon water tower located on<br />

South Hamilton Road by the water plant.<br />

Alleys and streets<br />

•Potential streets to receive attention in the <strong>2022</strong><br />

street maintenance program are being evaluated and<br />

the list could be announced in February.<br />

•Farst said the city will advertise for bids to complete<br />

the construction of the proposed storm drainage<br />

improvements for Hickory Alley in the next few weeks.<br />

The engineer’s estimate is being verified and will be<br />

formally announced when the solicitation period<br />

begins.<br />

“The improvement areas will include storm sewers<br />

within the following alley segments: Brook Alley from<br />

Main Street to Hickory Alley and Hickory Alley from<br />

Brook Alley to Raver Alley,” said Farst. “This improvement<br />

was also nominated for funding by the city in the<br />

aforementioned WWWIG program, but funding was<br />

not awarded.”<br />

•In 2021, council requested city officials review<br />

making the city's alleys all one way as well as<br />

upgrades to the city’s alley system in the historic areas<br />

of <strong>Groveport</strong>.<br />

“The review of the alley system routes as council<br />

requested, was a system-wide review,” said Farst.<br />

“Bearing in mind that the city’s downtown projects,<br />

especially at College and Main streets, necessitated<br />

temporary closure of two alleys, traffic patterns at this<br />

time are not typical. The city chose to delay the review<br />

until the new Main Street buildings are complete and<br />

occupied to ensure that the influence of those projects<br />

is reflected in the alley review when patterns resume<br />

and traffic generated by the new projects is realized.<br />

This review and the need for it will be possibly revisited<br />

at the end of <strong>2022</strong>, at the earliest.”<br />

Capital improvements in <strong>2022</strong><br />

Significant capital projects and purchases proposed<br />

for <strong>2022</strong> include:<br />

•$300,000 for street maintenance;<br />

•$185,000 for a two and a half ton snow truck and<br />

$140,000 for a front end loader;<br />

•$1 million for cart path replacement and $600,000<br />

for a maintenance building at the <strong>Groveport</strong> Municipal<br />

Golf Course;<br />

•$420,000 for the Hickory and Brook alleys storm<br />

alley drainage project;<br />

•$188,000 for safety improvements at <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Road and State Route 317;<br />

•$30,000 for sidewalk replacements;<br />

•$70,000 for curb ramp upgrades on Main Street;<br />

•$15,000 for Marketing Place reconstruction and<br />

$15,000 for Director’s Boulevard reconstruction.<br />

Southeast Library<br />

The Southeast Branch of the Columbus<br />

Metropolitan Library is located at 3980 S. Hamilton<br />

Road, <strong>Groveport</strong>. For information visit www.columbuslibrary.org<br />

or call 614-645-2275.<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> history<br />

The <strong>Groveport</strong> Heritage Museum contains photographs,<br />

artifacts, and documents about <strong>Groveport</strong>’s<br />

history. The museum is located in <strong>Groveport</strong> Town<br />

Hall, 648 Main St., and is open during <strong>Groveport</strong> Town<br />

Hall’s operating hours. Call 614-836-3333.


PAGE 6 - GROVEPORT MESSENGER - <strong>January</strong> 9, <strong>2022</strong><br />

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<strong>January</strong> 9, <strong>2022</strong> - GROVEPORT MESSENGER - PAGE 7<br />

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IMPROVEMENTS<br />

SINCE 1973<br />

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Install Hot Water Tanks,<br />

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Also Fencing &<br />

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CDC/EPA Approved Guidelines<br />

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LAWN CARE<br />

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YOUR LAWN & GARDEN<br />

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$20 & Up<br />

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MOVING<br />

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12/19 A&M<br />

1/30 A


PAGE 8 - GROVEPORT MESSENGER - <strong>January</strong> 9, <strong>2022</strong><br />

School board meetings<br />

The <strong>Groveport</strong> Madison Board of Education will hold its annual<br />

organization meeting at 7 p.m. on Jan. 12 at the District<br />

Service Center, 4400 Marketing Place, Suite B, <strong>Groveport</strong>. While<br />

the board will not formally act on their meeting dates for <strong>2022</strong><br />

until the Jan. 12 organizational meeting, the board has proposed<br />

resuming a two meeting per month schedule taking place on the<br />

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Staying active is important no matter of one’s age or<br />

abilities and a community plan to enhance such opportunities<br />

remains in the works.<br />

The Kiwanis Club of <strong>Groveport</strong> Madison, presented<br />

an idea to <strong>Groveport</strong> City Council in the fall of 2020 for<br />

an all ages/all abilities park feature to be built in the<br />

city. City elected and administrative officials liked the<br />

idea and began to plan to make it happen.<br />

“Our committee is supposed to get together sometime<br />

within the next month or so,”said <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Development Director Jeff Green. “The Kiwanis are<br />

still involved, but we have not had a chance to get<br />

together to look at the proposed plan.”<br />

The concept for the park feature is multi-generational,<br />

meaning there will be accessible play features<br />

for younger kids with limited mobility, as well as exercise<br />

and activity features for older adults. The idea is<br />

to add the all ages/abilities park and its features to the<br />

city’s Degenhart Park, which is located at the south<br />

ends of Lesleh Avenue and Madison Street.<br />

Christine Boucher of the Kiwanis Club of <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Madison said the approximate size of the proposed<br />

park is 8,000 square feet and back in 2020 the club had<br />

hoped it could be in place by the spring of <strong>2022</strong>.<br />

Progress toward creating the park feature has<br />

slowed due to pandemic concerns and budgetary work.<br />

“It is still on the table for Kiwanis of <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Madison in collaboration with the city,” said Boucher.<br />

“Our club is anxious to get it moving forward.”<br />

She said city officials and the Kiwanis of <strong>Groveport</strong><br />

Madison are still involved and committed to the project.<br />

“We presented the idea to the<br />

city out of a desire to have an all<br />

inclusive park for youth of all<br />

ages and abilities, but we also<br />

wanted to make sure it is multigenerational<br />

for our elderly<br />

neighbors who can benefit from<br />

being outdoors, getting exercise<br />

of mind and body while having a<br />

place to meet with friends at the<br />

park and share their stories.<br />

The city of <strong>Groveport</strong> has<br />

retained the engineer (EMH&T)<br />

and provided the space they currently<br />

own for the park to exist.<br />

At the end of third quarter last<br />

In the early morning hours of Dec. 27, ,<br />

a Madison Township Police officer was<br />

injured and a cruiser was damaged by a<br />

combative suspect at a Madison Township<br />

residence.<br />

Officers were called to the scene of an<br />

individual who was the subject of a 911<br />

call. After investigation, the suspect resisted<br />

arrest and allegedly caused the injury<br />

of a Madison Township officer. That officer<br />

was treated at a local hospital and<br />

returned to work the next day.<br />

According to a press release from the<br />

Madison Township Police Department, due<br />

to the quick response of Madison Township<br />

Police officers, the actions of the individual<br />

were neutralized and the suspect was<br />

secured in the cruiser. Officers used their<br />

training and responded well in the stressful<br />

and dangerous circumstances.<br />

“Thankfully Sgt. Gamblin recognized<br />

year, EMH&T presented some drawings to us and the<br />

city to get our input. They gathered our input and took<br />

them back to work on more detailed concept drawings.”<br />

Boucher said the construction and completion dates<br />

for the all ages/all abilities park feature are still to be<br />

determined.<br />

“We have to initiate our capital fundraising campaign<br />

first, but all things considered we would like to<br />

see it begin in late summer/early fall,” said Boucher.<br />

“The cost is not yet known. The cost will be based on<br />

how EMH&T determines the phases of the park based<br />

on our feedback from the drawings they presented to<br />

us early on. Funding is expected from community<br />

donations via our capital fundraising campaign and<br />

available grants.”<br />

When asked what exercise and other features have<br />

been determined to be placed in the park, Boucher said<br />

this is still being discussed.<br />

“We are looking at equipment and ground cover<br />

that permits wheelchairs, walker, and other assistance<br />

devices that don’t hinder someones ability to use the<br />

equipment,” said Boucher.<br />

According to Boucher, the plan is to construct the<br />

all ages/all abilities park feature on city land southeast<br />

of the existing Degenerate Park and along the neighborhoods<br />

of Newport village and Lambert Avenue,<br />

with connection by sidewalk from Greenfield Place.<br />

She said this project is important to the community<br />

for several reasons.<br />

“We have many beautiful park spaces in the city of<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong>, but none are accessible for anyone with limitations,”<br />

said Boucher. “We have many students in<br />

our district who are able body compromised who don’t<br />

get to enjoy the park features that their able-bodied<br />

family or friends can enjoy. We have an aging population<br />

around us, whether in their own home or a facility,<br />

who can benefit from the enjoyment of a park and a<br />

place to meet and socialize. Studies show that elderly<br />

can benefit greatly physically and mentally from a<br />

park with the right equipment and surroundings.”<br />

Boucher noted, as of now, there are only six all<br />

ages/abilities accessible playgrounds in central Ohio<br />

with the closest to <strong>Groveport</strong> being the newest park in<br />

Lancaster.<br />

For information about the Kiwanis Club of<br />

<strong>Groveport</strong> Madison, email gmkiwanis@gmail.com or<br />

call Boucher at 614-563-9540. You do not need to live<br />

in <strong>Groveport</strong> Madison to be a member, so business and<br />

corporate staff or employees are welcome.<br />

Arrest results in officer injury and cruiser damage<br />

the danger signs and called for assistance<br />

from Franklin County Sheriff’s Deputies,”<br />

said Madison Township Police Chief Gary<br />

York. “Otherwise, this situation might<br />

have escalated and turned much worse.<br />

The Madison Township Police Department<br />

has an excellent working relationship with<br />

the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office and<br />

appreciates their assistance during this<br />

arrest.”<br />

During the arrest, the suspect also<br />

allegedly caused damage to the interior<br />

and exterior of the Madison Township<br />

cruiser. The damaged vehicle has been<br />

taken out of service for repairs, which are<br />

estimated to exceed $6,100.<br />

“Unfortunately, this situation serves as<br />

a grim reminder of the risk and challenges<br />

police officers face on a daily basis. I am<br />

extremely thankful that everyone involved<br />

is okay,” said York.

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