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Living histories on stage next week
The 18th annual Ohio Chautauqua program, presented by Ohio Humanities, will visit Rossford from June 28 to July 2.
The theme for 2016 is “The Natural World” featuring chemist Marie Curie, Shawnee leader Chief Cornstalk, author Mary Shelley, U.S. President Theodore Roosevelt and zoologist Dian Fossey.
Ohio Chautauqua [pronounced Sha-tawk-wa] is a week-long, living history show that includes daily workshops for children and adults and evening performances by scholars in character under a giant red and white striped tent.
All activities and performances are free and open to the public.
Programs begin at 6:30 p.m. each night with musical entertainment under the red striped tent in Veterans Memorial Park at the Rossford marina.
Free parking is available at Rossford High School with a shuttle bus to the marina.
The schedule of live local music is:
•Tuesday, June 28– Acoustic Penguin plays old-time fiddle songs along with some jazz and swing tunes.
•Wednesday, June 29– Grande Royale Ukulelists of the Black Swamp are a vocal/ukulele quartet playing music ranging from Bertolt Brecht and Harry Belafonte to James Brown and the Beatles.
•Thursday, June 30–Root Cellar String Band performs music from pre-1940s rural America and the southern Appalachian mountains.
•Friday, July 1–Tim Tegge takes audiences on a lyrical journey with original songs that are funny, sad, poignant and thought-provoking.
•Saturday, July 2–Kerry Clark has been described by many fans as “a musical Norman Rockwell.”
Historical presentations begin at 7:30 p.m.
•Tuesday, June 28–Marie Curie.
The French physicist and chemist was awarded the Nobel Prize in both physics and chemistry for her pioneering research on radioactivity.
Susan Marie Frontczak brings Madame Curie to life to share how this tenacious and brilliant scientist strove to understand the invisible force of nature called radioactivity.
•Wednesday, June 29– Chief Cornstalk.
Cornstalk was a prominent leader of the Shawnee nation just prior to the American Revolution.
Dan Cutler’s portrayal of Cornstalk reveals how Native American practices regarding the natural world changed in the face of European colonization.
Chautauqua-goers might recall his presentation in Rossford in 2013 of Iroquois leader Chief John Logan.
•Thursday, June 30– Mary Shelley.
The English novelist, short story writer, dramatist, essayist, biographer and travel writer is best known for her 1818 Gothic novel “Frankenstein.”
Ms. Frontczak’s presentation will illuminate the author’s relationship with the natural world, which for her variously represented healing, romance, adventure, inspiration, terror and solace.
•Friday, July 1–Dian Fossey.
The American zoologist, primatologist and anthropologist–portrayed in the 1988 “Gorillas in the Mist” movie with Sigourney Weaver– brought worldwide attention to her study of mountain gorillas in Rwanda and her battle to save them from extinction.
Dianne Moran’s dramatic depiction uncovers a life of passion and trust that challenged the accepted role of the scientist in the world of primates in the wild.
•Saturday, July 2– Theodore Roosevelt.
The American statesman, author, explorer, soldier, naturalist and reformer served as the 26th U.S. President, from 1901 to 1909.
Dr. John “Chuck” Chalberg portrays this “force of nature” who believed in preserving wilderness and making use of its natural resources.
After each historical presentation, attendees have the opportunity to interact with the historic character through a question-and-answer segment limited to the character’s lifetime.
That is followed by another lively question-and-answer segment with the scholar and about the character’s impact on the natural world, including what has been learned since the character’s death.
There also will be two daily workshops given by each character at the Rossford Public Library.
The free workshops will be at 10 a.m. for children and 2 p.m. for adults Tuesday, June 28 through Saturday, July 2.
For a full schedule and details of workshops, see the schedule on page ???? or visit the library website www.ross fordlibrary.org.
Beth Genson, director of the Rossford Convention and Visitors Bureau, said Rossford was selected as one of four host cities from 13 Ohio communities vying for the prestigious event this year.
“Rossford hosted the Chautauqua in 2013 as one of the few cities in northwest Ohio ever chosen for the event,” Mrs. Genson noted.
The other three cities selected are Brimfield, Hamilton and Gallipolis–so Rossford will be the only city north of Dayton where the Chautauqua is visiting, she added.
Rossford is the last stop this summer of the traveling Chautauqua show.
The Rossford CVB, City of Rossford, Rossford Public Library and Rossford Record Journal are organizing the event.
Mayor Neil MacKinnon III thanked the planning committee members, sponsors and volunteers for their commitment to another program.
“It’s a wonderful event, and we’re fortunate to have it here,” he said. “It’s great entertainment, it draws people to the city on multiple nights and it’s family-friendly and educational.”
The program in 2013 attracted between 800 and 1,200 visitors daily.
The Journal office in Perrysburg now has the following new hours of operation:
Monday: 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Tuesday-Friday: 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Rossford lies at the heart of the Crossroads of America, an area experiencing tremendous economic growth, located at the crossroads of Interstate 75 and the Ohio Turnpike. The city's population of approximately 6,000 is primarily a mix of descendants of Polish, Czechoslovakian, German and Ukrainian workers who came from Pennsylvania to work at the glass plant, now Pilkington.
Rossford was incorporated as a village in 1939 and as a city in 1971. The City is a municipal corporation which operates under its own charter and is governed by a mayor and seven-member City Council. Rossford is served by full-time police and part-time fire departments, dispatched from the neighboring Village of Walbridge.
The City maintains a Community Recreation Center and three parks, one of which,Veterans Memorial Park, features a seasonal marina along with picnic areas and diamonds and courts for baseball, tennis, basketball and volleyball.
Rossford has three elementary schools, Glenwood, Indian Hills and Eagle Point, a junior high and high school and All Saints parochial school for grades pre-kindergarten through eight.
The city boasts a public library and many service and community organizations such as the Rossford Business Association, Lions Club and Veterans of Foreign Wars. Its Rossford Community Service League sponsors annual activities such as a Valentine's Day Dance, Easter egg hunt, Halloween, Memorial Day parades and their Christmas tree lighting.
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