Seneca County

Seneca County to hold third annual Manufacturing Showcase

Showcase LogoLocal manufacturers to demonstrate skilled trades to high school students

TIFFIN, OHIO – July 31, 2018 – The Seneca Department of Job and Family Services/OhioMeansJobs is once again partnering with local organizations and manufacturers to hold Seneca County’s third annual Manufacturing Showcase on October 12, 2018 at the Heminger Center on the Tiffin University campus. The event is an opportunity for area students to learn about careers in manufacturing and participate in hands-on skill demonstrations.

Carol Kern of Seneca DJFS is looking forward to another successful event: “We are excited to host this event for the third year, to get students talking about their options, and we are pleased that businesses and educators see the value in introducing students to different career paths.”

The showcase will focus on six skills: team building, lean practices, employability, machining, supply chain and mechanical engineering/electrical trades/automation. For each skill, there are six spaces available for a hands-on demonstration.

Eleven schools within Seneca County will send 700-750 students to participate in the showcase. The event will last a full day, with students split into one morning session and one afternoon session. Lunch will be provided at no cost.

Several manufacturers are already on board; Callies Performance Products, The Mennel Milling Company, NSI Crankshaft, and Charter Steel of Fostoria have signed on as well as American Fine Sinter, National Machinery, Taiho, Webster, Ballreich’s, and Toledo Molding & Die of Tiffin. Sentinel Career and Technology Center will also have a skilled booth. If you would like more information, to make a donation, or to sign up for a space at the showcase, please contact Carol at 419.447.5011 ext. 322, or visit http://senecashowcase.wordpress.com.

Check out last year’s event:

Reclaim It holds open house

IMG_20180618_114753_2.jpgA new establishment opening in downtown Tiffin later this year is holding an open house to highlight major renovations to the interior and exterior of 127 S. Washington St. Reclaim It is a charitable organization partnering with a wide variety of community businesses and organizations to uniquely refurbish household items for resale to benefit and empower local youth.

Karen Klepper is spearheading the initiative along with a board of 11 comprising community educators and leaders, as well as a youth advisory board made up of 11 college and high school students. “The greatest tool we have here is the youth board,” Klepper said. “They are the ones that will actually make the changes.”

Building trades instructor with Sentinel Career Center Aaron Thompson, who, along with his students, assisted in the renovation of the building added, “The kids act as mentors, but they still need mentors. Everyone gets something.”

Through furniture, creativity, story, community interaction, and group meals, Klepper hopes to create a safe and supportive environment for youth in our community to gather and learn both soft and hard skills, with the assistance of mentors.

“I am absolutely amazed by the community I live in,” Klepper said. “For all of the painful stories, there are more positive ones, and people who want to roll up their sleeves and make a difference and doing it for the right reasons. If we (in Seneca County) can’t change things, no one can. We are small enough to be manageable, but big enough to reflect others’ issues.”

Seneca County unemployment at 18 year low

Unemployment April 2018.jpgFor the first time since 2000, the unemployment rate in Seneca County dipped below four percent, coming in at 3.9 percent for April 2018, an 18 year low for the county. In comparison, Ohio’s unemployment rate was 4.3 percent and the national rate 3.9 percent, according to a May 18 press release from Ohio Job and Family Services.

Many factors contribute to the growth in employment, including the availability and access to jobs. Between 2014 and 2017 alone, Seneca County saw $339 million in business and building establishment and expansion, creating more than 1,400 jobs.

Already in 2018 we have seen several new business announcements, including:

  • Spire Advertising – A satellite office for an Ashland, OH based advertising firm announced in March, opening in June 2018.
  • The Chandelier – A new event space set to open in the former Community Civic Center in downtown Tiffin later this year.
  • Trilogy Health Services – Announced in April, Trilogy is to build a senior living facility that will employ 110, at an estimated investment of $14.5 million.
  • Kiku Fusion Sushi and Steak House – A full-service sushi and hibachi restaurant to locate in the Tiffin Mall later this year.
  • Panda Express – An international chain serving fast-casual Chinese cuisine was approved for a setback to build on the Tiffin Mall site.
  • Senecare – A local pharmacist has started a new business in the Laird Arcade offering one-on-one pharmacy services.
  • Time Staffing – A northern Ohio-based staffing agency opened a branch in Tiffin earlier this year, growing to a total of 9 offices throughout the region.
  • Yoga Chuck Health and Wellness Studio – Longtime yoga instructor Chuck “Yoga Chuck” Burmeister renovated and opened his own studio.
  • The Attic – A new specialty shop in downtown Tiffin, an expansion of a successful Findlay, OH store.
  • Glass N More Store – Another specialty glass shop that opened its fifth northern Ohio location in downtown Tiffin.
  • Stover Veterinary Services – Veterinarian Dr. Amber Stover and her husband launch a mobile vet clinic in early 2018, to be accessible throughout Seneca County.
  • Tiffin Candle Co. – A Tiffin couple has created their own business producing and selling community themed candles with a charitable aspect.
  • Mantra Mind Management – A new consulting business in the Laird Arcade focused on self-discovery, emotional regulation, and vision creation.
  • Wireless Boys – A Boost Mobile retailer opened their doors on W. Market St. in Tiffin earlier this year.
  • Reineke RV – Reineke Family Dealerships purchased and relocated Fort Ball RV to W. Market St. earlier this year.

2018 Outstanding Business Award – Zeis Companies

The 2018 Outstanding Business Award was presented to Zeis Companies for their business growth and exemplary community service.

Zeis Companies started in 1984, in the cabinet resurfacing business. The business grew into fire restoration services, and then sub-divisions and homes. Just this pass year, Zeis Companies was able to bring all of their operations under one roof in a new building N. SR 53. The building includes a showroom, a full shop for custom trim work and other pieces, as well as storage.

Zeis Companies is not just an asset to the community for the remodeling and restoration services they provide, but also for their community involvement and charitable works. Zeis was asked to assist in two Extreme Makeover: Home Edition builds, which inspired them to create the Extreme Build for Habitat for Humanity in 2011. Over the course of a day, volunteers are able to frame up and enclose an entire house. They have done four such builds since launching the program. They are also working with Habitat for Humanity to establish a ReStore, a nonprofit home improvement store and donation center that sells new and gently used furniture, appliances, home accessories, building materials and more to the public at a fraction of the retail price.

Rich Zeis accepted the award on behalf of the company and all of its employees.

 

 

Outstanding Business Award criteria:
The business must be able to demonstrate leadership in their particular field. The business must be able to show the involvement of its owners, managers, or employees in community affairs. The business must be able to demonstrate generosity of time, talent, and money to local charities or non profit programs. The business must be able to show initiatives taken to improve the quality of life in the community. The business must be able to show activities that improve the community.

2018 Lifetime Achievement Award – New Riegel Cafe

The New Riegel Cafe was the recipient of this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award. The cafe has been a Seneca County staple for more than 60 years.

The New Riegel Cafe is a family owned and operated restaurant started by W.J. “Pete” Boes in 1953. The cafe started out selling barbecued ribs and chicken before branching out to other fare, like ham and shrimp, and in 1971 began selling homemade bologna and sausage, as well as homemade salad dressing. The business expanded in the late 80’s with the addition of the gift shop, connected to the restaurant but located in the building next door.

The award was accepted by Tom Boes, who currently owns the restaurant with his brother, Dick Boes.

 

Lifetime Achievement Award criteria:
The business must be established with a history of continuous operation in the community. The business must be able to demonstrate community involvement and/or made some civic contributions that have made a significant impact on the quality of life in the community. The business must be an example of leadership in their business field, and an example of entrepreneurial spirit.

Tiffin Candle Co. celebrates local history

Tiffin Candle Co.jpgPortion of proceeds donated to local landmarks

TIFFIN, OHIO – May 3, 2018 – A local couple has created a new candle line to celebrate the community’s history, and donate to the upkeep of historic landmarks. The Tiffin Candle Co. combines local history with unique scents to represent local landmarks and give back to the community.

The Tiffin Candle Co. was started by Brian and Chelsea Bilger earlier this year. “We love candles and had the idea to start making them ourselves. We were brainstorming what we could do with the candles and got the idea of naming them after landmarks in Tiffin,” Brian said. “We both love Tiffin, and this seemed like the perfect way to give back.”

All of the candles are handmade and formulated to provide a strong scent with an even, long-lasting burn. The scents are created to complement the landmark they are named for, with the assistance of people with extensive knowledge of the site or organization. The Bilgers work with the Seneca County Museum to provide historical information on the back of the candle tin as well. For each candle sold, Tiffin Candle Co. donates $1 to the landmark the candle represents.

The first three scents available are Seneca County Museum, Oakley Park and Apple Jack Park. There are plans to expand the park series, and feature Tiffin streets in the future. The candles are currently available at the Seneca County Museum and Simply Susan’s in downtown Tiffin, which matches the Tiffin Candle Co.’s donation for each candle sold.

About SIEDC
Started in 1983, the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC) is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.senecasuccess.com.

Stover Veterinary Services opens mobile veterinary clinic

Stover Mobile Vet.jpgFull-service clinic to hold regular hours, continue house calls

TIFFIN, OHIO – April 16, 2018 – Stover Veterinary Services is expanding its practice with a new full-service mobile veterinary clinic. The clinic will hold regular office hours in Tiffin and at two other locations in Seneca County, in addition to house calls.

Dr. Amber Stover has been in business for 11 years, dealing mostly in house calls requiring mild to moderate care. The new clinic will enable her to treat a wider range of issues without sacrificing convenience to her clients.

“Many of the pets I treat, or their owners have mobility issues or their schedule won’t allow for an office visit, making a house call much more convenient. Now, I am able to perform even more services while maintaining that convenience factor,” she said. “We are also making veterinary services more accessible to residents of Seneca County by bringing a clinic closer to them.”

The mobile unit includes a surgery suite and lift table, as well as capability for bloodwork, X-rays and dental services. “Basically, anything that does not require an overnight stay,” Stover said.

The clinic will hold regular hours weekly at the corner of Riverside Dr. and N. Washington St. in Tiffin, at Riehm Produce Farm and the lot adjacent to The Corner Restaurant in Bloomville. Appointments can be made online at www.stoverhousecall.com or via phone call at 419-455-9572. Walk ups are also welcome.

 About SIEDC
Started in 1983, the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC) is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.senecasuccess.com.

Tiffin’s historic drive-in theater open for 2018 season

Drive In Neon

Rendering of the proposed restoration of the original neon sign at the Tiffin Drive-In.

Created in the 1920’s, drive-in movie theaters were once a staple of rural communities, counting more than 4,000 theaters nationwide at the height of their popularity in the 1960’s and 70’s. Today, less than 10% of those theaters still exist, and we are fortunate to have one right here in Tiffin, Ohio.

The Tiffin Drive-In Theater opened in 1949 and will celebrate its 70th year in continuous operation next summer. Current owners Rod and Donna Saunders purchased the theater in 2011, when the previous owners decided to retire from the business. The Saunders’ got their start in the drive-in theater business with the original Field of Dreams Drive-In, which they built in the backyard of their family home in Liberty Center as a way to provide an inclusive family entertainment experience, and they were excited at the prospect of expanding this venture.

After purchasing the long-time Tiffin establishment, the Saunders’ immediately set about making improvements to the theater and its grounds, including the purchase of a new projector, the addition of a second screen, updates to the concession stand and its equipment, and the transition from film to digital movies in 2013. In 2018, the name was reverted to Tiffin Drive-In Theater.

Their next big project is restoring the original neon sign. When the theater opened in 1949, it featured a large neon sign affixed to the back of the screen, facing SR 53. The neon was removed in the 1970’s due to maintenance concerns. In 2017, the Saunders’ began working with local neon artist Michael Flechtner to recreate the original neon sign. To this end, the Saunders have created the Historic Drive-In Theater Revitalization Fund, a non-profit organization with IRC Section 501(c)(3) status for the sole purpose of fundraising to repair iconic symbols of operational drive-in theaters in Ohio. Find more information or make a donation here.

Seneca County ranks in Top 10 nationally for economic development

Site Selection Magazine March 2018Community earns third such ranking in five years

TIFFIN, OHIO – March 5, 2018 – The Seneca Industrial & Economic Development Corporation (SIEDC) announced today that Seneca County has again placed in the top ten nationally in Site Selection Magazine’s rankings for large, private economic development projects – placing tenth out of the 575 micropolitans in the US for the honor for the second year in a row. Site Selection has been annually ranking states and cities since 1978.

This is the sixth year in a row that the Tiffin-Seneca micropolitan area has ranked in the top 100 nationally and the fifth year for ranking in the top ten percent. Qualifying projects must involve a capital investment of at least $1 million, create at least 20 new jobs, or add at least 20,000 sq. ft. of new floor area. Six Seneca County projects qualified for Site Selection, including projects by American Fine Sinter, Treves, OCECO, Mennel Milling and an industrial speculative building in the Eagle Rock Business Park.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz praised the announcement. “The momentum continues, and businesses keep expanding, locating and starting up in our community. We are proud of this ranking.” Fostoria Mayor Eric Keckler agreed, “Fostoria and Seneca County are demonstrating that we are a great place to do business.” Seneca County Commission President Mike Kerschner agreed: “We are establishing a track record of success that business finds attractive, and we look forward to more good things to come.”

This year, Ohio ranked as the number two state for development projects and the entire Northwest Ohio region posted strong numbers, with Findlay taking the number one micropolitan slot, Defiance tying with Seneca County for tenth, and Toledo ranking seventh in its division. “Northwest Ohio continues to be an economic development powerhouse,” said Dean Monske, President & CEO of the RGP Northwest Ohio in Toledo, the regional economic development organization for Northwest Ohio. “We congratulate the Toledo metro area, Findlay, Defiance and Tiffin on their national success.”

A press release from Site Selection magazine and a list of rankings can be found here. More information can be found at siteselection.com.

About SIEDC
Started in 1983, the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC) is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.senecasuccess.com.

Terra State, Heidelberg partnering on new nursing degree

HU Logo 12.8Press release provided by Heidelberg University and Terra State Community College

TIFFIN, OHIO – December 8, 2017 – Heidelberg University and Terra State Community College are partnering to develop a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program that will address the rising market need for more highly skilled nurses entering the healthcare profession.

Today, the two institutions took a step toward Terra Logo 12.8finalizing the program when they signed a 1+2+1 articulation agreement on Heidelberg’s campus.  When the new program is launched, nursing students would begin with one year of study at Heidelberg, proceed with two years of nursing study at Terra State and finish their Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree with a year of coursework at Heidelberg.

Academic leaders from Terra State and Heidelberg have been working to establish the groundwork for the new program.  The strengths of both institutions will be leveraged for the benefit of nursing students, who will take advantage of two years of tuition costs set by each institution. This blended model will reduce the overall educational expense for students interested in a BSN degree.

“We at Terra State Community College are so pleased to be partnering with Heidelberg University to expand educational offerings and opportunities to those interested in the nursing profession,” said Terra State President Dr. Jerome Webster. “Our faculty and staff, and especially our nursing faculty, are pleased to pledge our support to this initiative.”

Terra State is committed to working with Heidelberg “for the educational delivery of a high-quality, licensed, state-accredited and nationally accredited Registered Nurse program to Heidelberg students,” he said.

Noting that the two institutions’ share a core value to place students at the center of the learning experience, Webster added, “Our partnership with Heidelberg only strengthens our transformational journey and we are thrilled to join in this collaborative and innovative partnership with such an outstanding institution.”

President Robert H. Huntington echoed those sentiments.  “Heidelberg is especially thrilled to craft this educational partnership with Terra State Community College in order to give a top-quality and affordable new professional program to students interested in a nursing career,” he said.

Huntington added that the new nursing program is the perfect intersection of the liberal arts and professional education, which has been at Heidelberg’s core since its founding. “Now is the time,” Huntington said.  “Together, we have developed an innovative learning opportunity to make the beginning, middle and end of this program very successful.  This will be a wonderful four-year experience for our students.”

In addition to both presidents, Dr. Jennifer Spielvogel, vice president for Academic Affairs at Terra State, and Dr. Beth Schwartz, vice president for Academic Affairs and provost at Heidelberg, participated in the signing ceremony.  Both thanked their faculty members who have played an important role in developing the new BSN program.

“This will be a great way to serve students at both institutions and also serve the healthcare needs of the community,” Schwartz said.

Also on hand for the signing were: Terra State representatives Susan Kajfasz, associate professor of nursing; Holly Penhos, director of nursing; and Amy Anway, dean of Allied Health, Nursing and Human Services; and Heidelberg representatives Dr. Bryan Smith, dean of the School of Natural Sciences and Allied Health Sciences; Dr. Pam Faber, professor and chair of the Biological and Environmental Sciences Department; Ryan Musgrave, assistant professor and director of athletic training; Doug Kellar, vice president for Enrollment Management; and Phil Ness, vice president for University Advancement and Marketing.

In the coming weeks and months, work will continue to finalize the program in anticipation of a formal announcement about its launching in 2018 (pending review by the Higher Learning Commission).  The expectation of both institutions is that students will be able to enroll in the new program beginning in the fall of 2018.