Old Trinity Episcopal Church

New Community Kitchen Project Proposed in Downtown Tiffin

Exciting new initiative supported by organizations involving local food.

TIFFIN, OHIO – October 1, 2020 – A plan to invest $2.4 million in a community kitchen in Downtown Tiffin was announced today by Old Trinity Episcopal Church. The kitchen will focus on connecting local growers and businesses to the community, providing opportunities for groups to cook and eat together, housing a diverse set of cooking classes and creating ways to give back to the community by preparing food.

“Our Christian faith has taught us that breaking bread with our neighbors builds community. Working with others in our community to nurture healthy and life-giving relationships through preparing and sharing food fits with who we are,” said the Rev. Aaron Gerlach, pastor at Old Trinity Episcopal Church and board president of Seneca County Common Ground.

Seneca County Common Ground, a nonprofit organization operating the Tiffin-Seneca Farmers Market and leading other local food efforts, is one of the important relationships Old Trinity has formed while envisioning this project. Susan McCafferty, Senior Warden of Old Trinity said, “We are delighted to be partnering with Seneca County Common Ground and others in our community. This kitchen will be a welcoming space that facilitates Tiffin community members forging new relationships as they enhance their culinary skills.”

The kitchen space will be connected to the church building, 125 E. Market St., but will be a separate space with its own entrance. As well as being available to individuals and groups on a reservation basis, the kitchen will partner with the Tiffin-Seneca Farmers Market to serve locally grown food on market days and to teach community members ways of using local foods at home. Old Trinity and Common Ground look forward to utilizing the space with other local organizations who have been key in the shaping of the project.

The group has been working together since mid-2019 on the project.  Old Trinity has engaged its neighbors at the Seneca County Justice Center, including the judges and the Seneca County Commissioners. The project is contingent on the purchase of a portion of the county parking lot adjacent to the church and the Justice Center which would allow the kitchen’s footprint to expand just past the church’s current square footage. The parking for the Justice Center would also be enhanced and secured by a perimeter security fence and gate.

For information about the project or to find out how to support its development, contact Gerlach at RevGerlach@OldTrinityEpiscopal.com or call (567) 938-0102.

About Old Trinity Episcopal Church

Originally constructed in 1856, Old Trinity has been a staple in the Tiffin community for decades. The church worships in the Anglican beliefs centering on liturgy, tradition and intellectual response. It has from its beginning in Tiffin been attractive to community leaders. Tiffin’s first mayor, Henry Kuhn, was a member of this parish as well as many elected officials and community leaders throughout the years. The church has recently completed several projects including restoration of the stained-glass windows, renovation of the undercroft to accommodate parish and community functions and installation of an elevator. The central location and the community spirit of the congregation provide the incentive to the ministry of the space. Old Trinity Episcopal church is heavily invested in the community and continually looks for ways to provide value. Learn more at www.oldtrinityepiscopal.com.

About Seneca County Common Ground

Created in 2019, Seneca County Common Ground is a nonprofit organization supporting local food & agriculture and promoting access to fresh foods for Seneca County residents. The board of the organization includes Seneca County OSU Extension Agent Hallie Williams, Reverend Aaron Gerlach of Old Trinity Episcopal Church, local business owner and chair of the Downtown Retailers Committee Dave Spridgeon, local business leader Dale Depew, TSEP Development Manager Audrey Flood, and local food vendors Kristy Buskirk of Clay Hill Farms and John Riehm of Riehm Produce Farm. Seneca County Common Ground oversees the operations of the Tiffin Seneca Farmers Market and supports other local food initiatives. Our market manager is Courtney Heiser. Find out more at sccommonground.org or find Seneca County Common Ground on Facebook.

About Downtown Tiffin

The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together to for “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC to act as the downtown organization and “Tiffin Tomorrow” came under the SIEDC umbrella as the “Downtown Development Committee,” which serves as the governing board of the downtown organization. In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Ohio Main Street Program. For more information, click here.

ABR approves two Façade Enhancement Grants

Two projects produce $45,500 investment

MVIMG_20180205_163146.jpgTIFFIN, OHIO – February 6, 2018 – Today, the Architectural Board of Review approved two Façade Enhancement Grants, totaling $15,128 and representing an overall investment of $45,557.

Old Trinity Episcopal Church, located at 125 E. Market Street was awarded $10,000, the maximum grant amount, to install new storm windows to protect the church’s stained-glass windows, which are also being restored.

Reverend Aaron Gerlach said the grant was an easy way to defray some of the expense of the restoration and maintenance of the windows. “As a non-profit, it is wonderful to receive some assistance in such a large and costly project,” he said.

The building at 25-27 S. Washington Street also received funds for a window project. A grant of $5,128 was approved to replace second and third floor windows. The building also received a Façade Enhancement Grant in 2017 for a roofing project.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz noted the new and returning applicants. “The Façade Enhancement Grant remains a strong tool in revitalizing downtown Tiffin, as evidenced today by a building receiving its first grant while others are on their second or third project using the program,” he said.

About the Façade Enhancement Program
This City of Tiffin reimbursement grant program was started in 2014 and provides a 50 percent match of funds for eligible exterior improvements on residential and commercial structures within the downtown historic district, up to $10,000. Each building is eligible to receive up to $10,000 per calendar year.  For more information, visit www.senecasuccess.com  (search “Façade Enhancement”).

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

First downtown Pumpkin Stroll a success

pumpkin stroll stopOn Saturday September 30th, more than 300 members of the Seneca county community enjoyed the Tiffin Pumpkin Stroll, hosted by Simply Susan’s. Those that participated walked around beautiful Downtown Tiffin, collecting pumpkin-themed treats at local businesses. Business involved included:

If you missed the Pumpkin Stroll, there’s a similar event in spring! On the Chocolate Walk, guests will collect sweet treats as they make their way through downtown Tiffin. More information will be provided closer to the event.

Around the Town event welcomes back university students

around the townNearly 1,000 Heidelberg and Tiffin University students will have an opportunity to see what more than 60 Tiffin businesses and organizations are all about at a Welcome Back Students/Around the Town Event this Saturday, Aug. 22 from 3 – 5 p.m. on the courthouse green space.

Around the Town is one of the signature events of the Downtown Strategic Plan, and this is the first year that the event will be held downtown and combine both universities.

WTSC Seneca County Radio will be live broadcasting from the event, playing music and interviewing guests. Several restaurants will be providing free samples, shops and restaurants will hand out coupons and menus, non-profits will provide students with information about how to get involved in their organizations and students can check out local services.

SIEDC Downtown Development Specialist Bryce Riggs is a Heidelberg student the lead organizer of the event. “As a student and lifelong Tiffin resident, I am aware of the opportunities in the community, but the majority of new students don’t know what’s out there or where they can go. Tiffin has so much to offer! I would like other students to know what’s out there, so they can get involved in the local organizations and visit our restaurants and shops,” Riggs said.

Participating businesses and organizations:

Businesses open around the square: