31 December 2007

news: 31 Dec 2007

realty building gets some cred
"The Realty Building in Youngstown is one of 11 historic renovation projects to receive awards through the Ohio Historic Preservation Tax Credit program. The total estimated value of the tax credit for the project is $1,896,280."
(from The Business Journal)

28 December 2007

Good News for the Tod Engine

The Youngstown Steel Heritage Preservation blog reflects on the journey after receiving some generous financial contributions. Read more here.
"My 12 year old dream of saving the Tod Engine and restoring it is coming true, piece by piece. With these latest donations the purchase of the steel building will be fully funded. There is still one more contribution that we are expecting, and when that comes in the foundation work for the building will be fully paid for. There is still much more to do and I will be working on the second phase of our capital campaign, but for now its time to sit back and appreciate just how far we have come.

Just think, in 1995 when I discovered the Tod Engine, it was sitting deep in an active steel mill scheduled for demolition. I was 22 years old, never been in a steel mill before in my life, had no money and no idea what I was doing. The first miracle was getting North Star Steel to donate the engine, which had a high scrap value to them. The next miracle was getting 250 tons of parts taken apart, moved and stored and do it for under $10,000. The Tod family paid for half of that and I maxed out a credit card to pay the rest."

studio space opening up

Youngstown Art is putting out a notice that some studio spaces are soon to be available:
"These spaces are high quality studios by most standards. The property owners are looking for people who are serious artists and who will make full use of the spaces. They have an "incubation philosophy" about their buildings and are involving themselves with artists to help promote the arts in this city."
You can find out how to contact the owners of the property here.

27 December 2007


Meditations in an Emergency has some great comments in this recent post.

昨日(きのう)ケーブルTVのHistory Channelを見(み)ていたら、「アメリカ人(じん)は何(なに)を食(た)べてきたか? American Eats 」という一連(いちれん)の番組(ばんぐみ)をやっていた。
 アイスクリームに棒(ぼう)をつけたのは、Ohio の Youngstown が最初(さいしょ)だって? Good Humor Man がそれをアメリカ中(じゅう)に広(ひろ)めて、今(いま)では世界(せかい)中で棒(ぼう)アイスが売(う)られている、って。

 Merry Christmas!

a reflection on 2007

Dreaming of 224 reflects on the year that was 2007. Check it out.
"If you were a person, 2007, I would kiss you on the mouth.

You have been fantastic, taking me so many different places, meeting so many different people."

The History of the Arms Family

The Mahoning Valley History blog is compiling historical information on the Arms Family. You can read more here.
"MVHS has created a PDF file of the Genealogy of the Arms and Related Families. This Adobe readable file is available in the archival library. In addition to genealogical information, the file also contains tidbits and background for many of the Valley’s “movers and shakers.” The genealogical report is indexed and accompanied by pedigree charts for a number of the primarily lineages, appearing as an appendix to the main document."

Leadership not Perfection

Mayor Jay Williams explains in his blog the details on the upcoming special city council meeting. Read more here.
Before any media spin/frenzy ensues, I have decided to articulate the details on the upcoming special city council meeting. At my request, City Council has agreed to hold a special meeting this Friday, December 28, 2007 to amend legislation related to management compensation. There is sure to be much speculation as to reason behind the reconsideration; the best explanation is the truth.

As leaders we must be willing to set new precedents and send new messages; at times that can be difficult to say the least. Leaders must also be willing to weather the criticism and detriment that invariably comes with the imperfect process of making those difficult decisions. It’s often referred to as “The Penalty of Leadership.”

news: 27 Dec 2007

YSU Trustees ok Land Swap
Update on the plan to connect the downtown and the university - and the new $36 million business college building (from the Vindicator)

NYC Doubling Program to Get Cops to the Streets
"Every new police officer in New York City will be sent onto the streets of some of the city’s toughest neighborhoods as part of a broad anticrime operation that the authorities say has helped produce historic drops in crime, the city announced on Wednesday."

"Police officials and Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said that each of the 914 police recruits being sworn in on Thursday would join the program, Operation Impact. They also announced that crime in almost every major category declined again this year, with violence down in the schools and on the subways and with homicides on track to fall below 500 for the first time since reliable statistics became available 44 years ago." (from nytimes)

Exploring Bo's Background: Forged In . . .
"More than that, the athletes and coaches adopted the survival attitude of the city.

"That's the never-quit mentality," said Heacock, the YSU coach. "It's never going to get bad enough that you would ever surrender here. You may go lose a game. You will never, ever quit at anything."

The list of notable Steel Valley coaches is long. It includes Bob Stoops, his brothers Mike and Mark at Arizona; Bo Pelini and his older brother, Carl, the Nebraska defensive coordinator; Mark Mangino at Kansas; Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator Mike Trgovac; and Lou Holtz." (from the Omaha World-Herald)

20 December 2007

A Snowy Shout-Out

Mahoning Valley View gives thanks to the folks thoughtful enough to shovel their sidewalks:
"As someone fascinated by all things urban, I've started a personal survey. Of the 40 houses I passed this morning, approximately 25 had shoveled their walks. And of the 15 unshoveled sidewalks, at least 12 are renter-occupied. Which leads me to ask, is snow-removal absent from the maintenance clauses present in most rental agreements?"

You can read more of her thoughts here.

news: 21 Dec 2007

Bill contains $17M for area projects
That big ol' omnibus bill contains some goodies for the region. Some highlights:

- $2.4 million to Ajax Tocco of Warren for research and development of tactical metal fabrication systems.
- $1.97 million to Parker Hannifin's Youngstown division for a hybrid hydraulic program
- $1.6 million to establish the Center for Excellence in Industrial Metrology and 3D Imaging Research in Youngstown.
- $500,000 to Syncro Medical System’s development of a feeding tube for battlefield trauma patients.
- $282,000 for an entrepreneurial development initiative named Salute to Success, as part of the high-tech initiative on West Federal Street in downtown Youngstown.

Also, the President is a hypocrite when it comes to condemning earmarks.

Lawrence Co. to extend enterprise zone bounds
The Lawrence County Enterprise Zone's boundaries will expand after receiving approval from DCED, the state's lead economic development agency.

Time to work together says Lt. Governor
"Development officials will hold seven regional planning sessions to come up with a from the Business-Journal: “Development is putting together a plan for the state that relies “very heavily” on regional input. The initial goals should be released in early February, he adds, and the full plan be completed by April."

Festivus in Pittsburgh
The celebration will feature the Leonard Cohen Ensemble from Youngstown

Home Again

Meditations in an Emergency discusses his recent trip to New York.
Getting ready to go into another entrance ramp lane, he pulled up beside another cabbie, rolled down his window, and said in a hysterical voice, “LaGuardia!? LaGuardia!?” and the other driver looked back at him in puzzlement, concern and panic, shaking his hand as he drove, a gesture that said, “I don’t know what the hell you’re saying!”

You can read more of the story here.

Pandora's Art Incubator

The Art Youngstown blog shares some thoughts on recent discussions to form an arts incubator. Have any opinions?
"Since I began writing about an art incubator, it seems I have opened a Pandora's Box. I have received many emails and phone calls and had many heated discussions. What started as an interesting diversion now has taken control of my life. It is amazing to me the passion that exists for the Arts In Youngstown.

In the past week I also had several meetings with two separate organizations who are interested in funding an AI. Each are financially capable of creating one or more fully functioning, highly diverse Incubators that could handle the Fine and Performing Arts."

You can read more here, here, and here.

contact info for this concept is provided.

Welcome Art Youngstown to the local blogosphere!

news: 20 Dec 2007

Scuffles might derail the Pittsburgh Promise
It seems the devil is in the details - and those details are upsetting Pittsburgh's City Council and potential for free college tuition for city school students. Read more here and here.

Regional and Grassroots Projects Split $1 million
In anticipation of Pittsburgh's 250th anniversary. Read more here.

YSU Looks to Link Town and Gown
Hunter Morrison speaks to the CIC Board and says the intent behind the new College of Business Building is create not just a building, but a district that will draw downtown to campus and students to the downtown.

19 December 2007

looking inside downtown's rosetta stone cafe

Shout Youngstown examines the inside of the Rosetta Stone Cafe, a new restaurant that will open soon downtown.

First post

Second post

news: 19 Dec 2007

WRTA Tries to Go Countywide
some interesting bits from this story in the Vindicator:
Mahoning County commissioners passed a resolution to enable placement of a 0.25 percent, five-year sales tax to support countywide bus service.

Youngstown City Council's resolution would expand the authority's board from five members (four appointed by Youngstown's mayor and one appointed by council) to seven members, with four appointed by the county commissioners and three by the mayor of Youngstown.

WRTA has been forced this year to reduce service by about 50 percent because of state and federal funding cuts. Evening routes, routes to Warren and Saturday service has been removed along with thinning out schedules on its remaining routes. Youngstown city property tax and the fare box provide the only local revenues for WRTA.
It seems like city taxpayers are footing the bill to send people to shop in the suburbs. Maybe a city plus inner-ring suburb tax plan is best.

Youngstown-Taft Technology Center update
click here for more info.

and from the Chief Evangelist:

Wow...what a year!

Added five new B2B software companies to our growing portfolio.

High profile visitors including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Presidential candidate John Edwards, Senator Sherrod Brown, and Lieutenant Governor Lee Fisher.

Construction starts on our new $6 million Taft Technology Center to accommodate the tremendous growth of YBI companies.

Secured $1.5 million in funding to establish the National Center of Excellence for Advanced Metrology and 3-Dimensional Imaging.

Portfolio company Turning Technologies tops the Weatherhead 100 list and is named by Inc. magazine as the fastest growing software company in the country.

Stay tuned in 2008. The best is yet to come!

Per Ardua Ad Astra

Matt's making t-shirts

Matt Palka talks about his weekend experience - making those oh so soft t-shirts for his upcoming cross-country tour.
"Armed with a screen, paint, squeegee, and a 150 watt light bulb we made our stencil using photo emulsion. Then it was onto the paint. Once Brittaini taught me the technique, I worked solo. Doing everything individual by hand does take time. But I've never been afraid of doing the work. Two sleepless days later I emerged with an army of shirts. Each one having it's own unique vintage and worn look, and the fabric feels as soft as rabbit's fur, no joke!"

18 December 2007

news: 18 Dec 2007

Venture Capital Funds Look at Valley
“That’s one of the reasons we like what the Youngstown Business Incubator is doing with their focus, because they’re delivering products that have a clear customer demand and they’re able to get what we call the ‘voice of the customer’ involved early in the process,” he continued. “You’re not just developing a technology for technology’s sake. You’re really developing technology for the market that’s out there.”
You can read more about early stage funding in Youngstown here.

First Night Youngstown gets some much needed $
locals step up to fully fund the annual event after one of the past key sponsors pulled out.

Study Recommends NEOUCOM Expansion
"The final recommendation coming out of the North East Ohio Universities Collaboration and Study Commission calls for NEOUCOM to remain a free-standing medical school, albeit with expanded collaborative efforts with other institutions."

Lemon Grove Gets Grant
The Youngstown City Board of Control approved a $5,000 grant for the Lemon Grove LLC, a restaurant/lounge at 122 West Federal St.

17 December 2007

2010 Checkup

Youngstown Renaissance reexamines the four parts of the Youngstown 2010 vision statement.
"Until we put a priority on our priceless heritage, we won't be able to come to grips with what Youngstown can be. The city, the CIC and Lou Frangos have failed to protect buildings under their care and prevent them from ruin, and this is absolutely inexcusable. If we can find money to demolish buildings beyond the point of repair, we should be able to prioritize preserving irreplaceable historic structures."

You can read more here.

Yo, Cleveburgh!

Shout Youngstown shows in this post how the Pittsburgh and Youngstown regions are integrating. Some questions:

should the Cleveland, Youngstown, and Pittsburgh regions all be collecting the same data?

Should the Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber be replicating the exact model that Pittsburgh is now instituting?

Guided by the style and ease of the PRI website, maybe tracking the Arts, Demographics, Economy, Education, Environment, Government, Health, Safety and Transportation as a mega-region can be a component of the Ryan/Altmire Tech Belt initiative?
check out more of what's being said here.

Learning devices, new restaurants, and football coaches

Defend Youngstown provides a great review of some recent stories including:
- new Greek restaurant to open downtown
- new company in medical technology in incubator
- new tool for learning about the downtown for middle schoolers
- the coaches from youngstown
- and like, six other stories
you can read more here.

16 December 2007

her big Green Jealousy

The Youngstown Moxie blog expresses jealousy for the steps Akron is taking in green technologies:
"But now I say to myself," Enough of your green jealousy, this taint must be sublimated!."

My question is how? I know that Y-towners must work harder and keep pushing, but I'm looking for tangible suggestions. For example, exactly, how do ideas such as a sludge plant get implemented? Would it start with a resolution such as the one between Summit County and KB Compost? What is the most effective way to move good ideas forward. Please comment and advise before I'm eaten alive by the green monster.
you can read more here.

15 December 2007

Sauerkraut Soup

Sold Out Vilija Dinner Keeps Growing Every Year

Shout Youngstown reviews the vilija dinner held recently.
"Last Sunday at St.Matthias' Hall in the southside neighborhood of Lansingville, hundreds and hundreds of people joined together in the celebration of Vilija: the traditional slovak christmas eve meal.

All people - those of Slovak decent and new visitors to the neighborhood - are welcomed into the community for a great feast with flowing wine and traditional slovak entertainment.

What's amazing about all of this is that the Slovak community in Youngstown continues to hang in there, some might say even thrive. People continue to donate their time and gifts for auction (like the signed boxing gloves by Lansingville native and resident, World Champion Kelly Pavlik). The language continues to be spoken, and the traditions continue be passed down to even younger generations."

14 December 2007

news: 14 Dec 2007

Wean Foundation gives $500,000 for people to buy houses within the city of youngstown
The Mahoning Valley Urban Homeownership Incentive Program will provide $5,000 to a prospective homeowner to assist with purchasing a home. They get another $5,000 to fix the house if it has code violations.

Those eligible must work full-time for any nonprofit organization, Youngstown State University and its affiliates, or the city of Youngstown.

100 more call center jobs downtown in 2008
Also in this story, Maria's Downtown Cafe wants to open café/restaurant/coffeehouse featuring Greek Food in Reality Building by march 2008

13 December 2007

news: 13 Dec 2007

YSU gets additional $1.5 million from student body growth
Fall enrollment up to 13,500.

Read this story to see what the board of trustees did with the funds.

Landmark bowling alley set to re-open on west side
New owners Shane Nesbitt and Alfred Eusanio invested about $300,000 of extensive renovations into the place.

“We’d like to help restore the West Side,” Nesbitt says. “We were born and raised here, and we wanted to revitalize a Youngstown landmark that’s been around for 50 years.”

Mahoning Valley Lanes will have electronic scoring, new seating, a new kitchen with two new chefs, new carpeting and upgraded lane equipment certified by Brunswick.

12 December 2007

news: 12 Dec 2007

City Board of Control Meets
"In other business, the city approved a development agreement to assist the renovation of the former Chrystal’s restaurant on Belmont Avenue into a mixed-use retail center."

"In addition, the board approved a five-year lease for Capital Grille LLC in the food court at 20 Federal Place. The restaurant, which opened Tuesday, offers a selection of sandwiches, salads and side dishes."

11 December 2007

holiday art challenge competition

The Youngstown Renaissance writes this
Here's the challenge: Write a cartoon that celebrates the holiday season in the Mahoning Valley. Since I believe constraints are the seeds of creativity, please limit your strip to four frames. If you're not up to drawing, just describe the scenes and actions in your frames to accompany the dialog.

Post in the comments or e-mail me, if you don't have a place to post your strip. (tylersclark at gmail dot com) All entries will get voted on Monday, 12/17. Deadline for entry is Saturday (12/15) at midnight. Winner gets . . .

Redux of the Map

Youngstown Renaissance announces that the Think Youngstown google map is now open for anyone to edit.
I've opened the map up for collaboration for all. Here's what to do:
1) Visit the Think Youngstown Map.
2) Log in and look around.
3) Click the "Edit" button on the left, next to the map's title, then you can right-click anywhere on the map and add a marker.
4) Customize it with an appropriate icon (you can see some of the ones I've tried out and use those or others) and additional details.

08 December 2007

news: 08 Dec 2007

Columbus Dispatch's front page story on Youngstown
includes historical photos and a video clip with Jay Williams.

Exhibition of Pavlik Photos at Butler
"The Pavlik title is the local sports moment for this generation. It will be a lifetime memory for the region much like Ray Mancini was 25 years ago," said Vindicator Editor Todd Franko. "A newspaper has a great front-row seat for it, and to team with Butler and Pavlik to present it this way is fantastic for the community."

Wick Neighbors Receive Grants
The $100+ Wick District-Smoky Hollow Plan includes 270 units of new housing, 20,000 square feet of retail space and 10 acres of park and public space.

learn more about Wick Neighbors Inc.

news: 07 Dec 2007

YSU likely to get nod for community college
"A commission set up to find ways for five northeastern Ohio universities to collaborate is expected to
recommend that . . . "


Over the great blog Burgh Diaspora, they are asking what defines the Diaspora?
"Places help us make sense of the "people who matter." The "people who matter" help us make sense of place. In Paul's article, the people who matter to him defined where he was on Thanksgiving. No matter where he was at the time, Pittsburgh was important.

I'm betting that the answer is yes and that's why the group IntoPittsburgh now exists. IntoPittsburgh isn't an organization or a marketing campaign. It is a collection of people (and existing initiatives) who matter and who are into Pittsburgh. Feel free to self-identify. I did exactly that.

Blogging is an exercise in humility. I didn't invent the idea of leveraging the Burgh Diaspora for purposes of regional economic development. But not only do the like-minded fail to find each other, we fail to do something once we connect. My vision for IntoPittsburgh is doing by connecting."

06 December 2007

we can prevail

Mayor Williams reflects on a double homicide that took place.
"Back to the issue at hand, I love this City. I believe in the goodness of this City. It is why I sought and intend to re-seek the Office of Mayor. Even on days when Youngstown is seemingly at its worst and it would appear easier to quit, I know that I cannot quit. We cannot quit. As tempting as it might be to write this city off, we, just, cannot, we just will not. We must press on in the face of this unyielding epidemic of violence. As many as there are who would love to see us surrender, there are more who believe, like I do, that we can prevail.

I have to believe that there must be solutions to this issue. No, not the dim-witted and impractical opinions which flow from the peanut gallery of cowards who stand on the sidelines and play armchair quarterback. Instead, I am referring to real life battle-harden solutions for people who are willing to continue the fight on the front lines. We must seek solutions that can bring sustained results to a problem with complexity beyond measure."

blah, humbug

The Youngstown Renaissance blog looks at the holiday season in this great post.
"I don't want to douse anyone's holiday cheer with yellow snow, but I've got to say that I'm not feeling that old Christmas spirit this year. Have you noticed how many pathetic Christmas songs there are on the radio, blaring at you relentlessly as you make your way down the street or through shops?"

"As it happens, a number of earlier traditions observed December 25 as a feast day for their deities, including Phrygian Attis (who, incidentally, was a shepherd born of a virgin), Greek Dionysus (who, incidentally, is the child of a god and a mortal and traveled to and returned from the underworld, and his followers ate and drank his "flesh" and "blood"), Egyptian Osiris (who, incidentally, was known as "Lord of Lords", "King of Kings" and "Good Shepherd" and was sacrificed and resurrected) and Persian Mithra (you get the idea).

Maybe I'll put up a Dionysian bacchanal scene in my front yard to balance the numerous nativities around?

In fact, I think a bacchanalian holiday is something I could really get into."

05 December 2007

news: 05 Dec 2007

Archives Director Named at YSU
University Archives and Special Collections opened last week on the 5th floor of Maag Library. There you will find documents, publications, photos, and artifacts looking at YSU's history since the late 1800s.

"The area features an exhibit gallery that celebrates the university's history through a series of wall displays on YSU's academic, school, social and athletic traditions through the years. It also features flat screen monitors highlighting prominent YSU alumni, the university's presidents and important events in YSU's history.

In addition to overseeing four full-time staff members, Barragan will work with patrons of the archives, potential donors to the archives, university administrators and the board of trustees in efforts to continue the growth of the archives."

Hospital Leases Space at Boardman St. E's
Select Specialty Services purchased a whole city block to develop on the northside, removed the occupants, has now decided to move to the suburbs, and left a bunch of boarded-up brick homes between the hospital and the university for us to look at every day. Thanks a bunch.

Review of the Oakland's How the Drag Queen Stole Christmas
with pictures!

Medical Center to Support Tuition Fund in Pittsburgh

The Pittsburgh Promise (like Kalamazoo's)
"Beginning next spring, any of the district’s 2,000 seniors, regardless of family income, who have attended public school here for at least the last four years, graduate with a 2.0 grade point average, and attend a public or private college in Pennsylvania will be eligible for $5,000 from the fund to pay for any tuition expenses not covered by other aid.

The district estimates the program could cost $3 million the first year, and more in future years as more students take advantage of it. The program is also seen as a way to retain middle-class families who have been leaving the district when their children reach high school.

Starting next school year, graduating seniors must achieve a 2.5 grade point average to qualify. By 2012, as the fund matures, the scholarship amount will grow to $10,000, and students will have to pass a graduation exam to be eligible for the maximum award.

...the district lost more than 1,100 students this year, dropping to 28,000."

Goodyear has tentative deal to stay in Akron
State chips in $50 million, total investment of project almost $900 million

U.S. Steel Invests $1 billion in Mon Valley Mill
Lots of money reinvested in the other Steel City

04 December 2007

news: 04 Dec 2007

MAYNSTREAM Launches New Magazine
review of red carpet party at B&O Station downtown for new Youngstown music magazine

Youngstown Magic Sends Ohio State to the BCS
Youngstown's Bob Stoops, head coach of Oklahoma, kicked Missouri's butt to send OSU to the Championship.

Youngstown's Jim Tressel, head coach of Ohio State, will be going to New Orleans as #1 in the country.

Youngstown's Bo Pellini, now at LSU and new head coach for Nebraska, should just leave the South now and get busy with the Cornhuskers.

Youngstown's Mark Mangino, head coach of Kansas, can be proud of reaching the #2 ranking this season.

All of these men, who so impacted 1-A football this season, have one thing in common . . .

03 December 2007

news: 03 Dec 2007

Mahoning County CVB Steps It Up
A new group has been organized by the Mahoning County Convention and Visitor's Bureau called the Valley Volunteer Corps.

They are looking for volunteers for the Summer Festival of the Arts, held at Youngstown State University in early July; the annual PONY softball tournaments; and guides for tour buses.

To volunteer, call (330) 740-2130.

The group is also creating three local advisory councils to find out how hotels, restaurants, and attractions can use the bureau to promots their industry.

community networked volunteerism => a stronger Yo

WYTV's Trabert heading Back to Wichita
Consolidation is forcing the author of this report away from the Yo.

Will WYTV continue to maintain the progressive causes that made them a better media company, even as their management structure changes?

With work like this, many would argue they set the standard for other television stations in the Mahoning Valley.

And no more "We the People" on weekdays.

Vince, we hardly knew Ye.

02 December 2007

Grand Buffet & The Realtime Digimob

Abraham White posts this story about the upcoming Grad Buffet and The RealTime DigiMob show at Cedar's this Saturday (december 8th)
"Now to get back on topic. If you decide you want to brave the music scene in Youngstown you should keep checking this site for our recommendations. And we highly recommend that you come out to Cedars Lounge, Saturday December 8th at 10:30/11ish and gear up for a night of good music.

The Realtime Digimob is coming into town hot off the heals of their humorously spaced out, disasterous, gorilla costume-clad performance at Halloweens even at the Stage, (aka Stage Fright). So if you desire a more cohesive less chaotic performance from the group and want something that doesn't involve the tri-jock area then this is your night."

Mark your calendars:
Grand Buffet
w/ The Realtime Digimob
11pm @ Cedars Lounge