Latest News

Bay Village launches Cahoon Memorial Park study, master plan

The City of Bay Village has begun work on a master plan for Cahoon Memorial Park. The plan will focus on lakefront access and connecting the lakefront to the rest of the park.

In 2019, the city was awarded a Coastal Management Assistance Grant by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources to conduct a public access study of Bay Point and adjacent shoreline and walking path areas, as well as circulation with and connectivity to the rest of Cahoon Park. The grant will cover 50% of the cost of the access study and a geotechnical study of Bay Point and the bluff along the shore.

This study will build on the results of two studies completed in 2017:  the Bay Village Master Plan and the Cahoon Park Area Connectivity Study conducted by the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA). The current study will be used to create a master plan to enhance public lakefront access, increase recreational enjoyment of Lake Erie and Cahoon Park, beautify the lakefront setting, and protect and manage existing natural habitat.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:47 AM, 05.19.2020

Westlake in Bloom brings out families and friends for planting day

Friends of Westlake Porter Library Sharon Didion, Carol Masek, Cathy Schultz and Ken Didion plant their Hilliard Boulevard flower box. Photo by Denny Wendell

Dense fog gave way to sunny skies on May 16 as individuals, families and community groups from across Westlake came out on a Saturday morning to plant the flower boxes along Hilliard Boulevard.

The 224 boxes lining the median from City Hall to the Rocky River line are part of the Westlake in Bloom community beautification program.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 11, Posted 11:34 AM, 05.19.2020

Virus fails to stop Bay High music concerts

Bay High orchestra members.

While Bay High auditorium won't be filled with audiences of family and friends for this week's spring concerts due to the COVID-19 virus, Bay High vocalists and instrumentalists will perform as groups virtually, making music together in a historical, new way.

Choral Director Devon Gess said that Bay High Choraleers will begin their performance on Tuesday, May 19, at 7 p.m. with music that was individually pre-recorded and then merged together via the magic of video editing.

They will present "When I Think About Angels" and "Light of a Clear Blue Morning." Interns Cami Drenkhan and Eddie Papp, working this year with Mrs. Gess, will perform "You Matter To Me." Choral award recipients will be announced, and seniors will be recognized.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:39 AM, 05.19.2020

Westlake Kiwanis will hold virtual Memorial Day parade and services

Norm Resko and Bruce Zrykowski lead a past year's Westlake Memorial Day Parade.

In this age of COVID-19 many events have been cancelled. The Westlake Kiwanis has already cancelled their spring pancake breakfast but are determined to have Memorial Day services.

As a result they will be having a virtual Memorial Day parade and services on cable channels AT&T U-Verse channel 99, Spectrum channel 20 and WOW channel 21. They will also be running it on their website, k03498.site.kiwanis.org, and the city's website, www.cityofwestlake.org.

The virtual celebration will feature a video of the parade and services from 2014, including a reading of the names of all the fallen service members from Westlake. Kiwanis President Ray Budoi has taped a brief introduction to the video, paying tribute to all of those on today's "front lines" battling the coronavirus. A printable program of the event is available for download.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:41 AM, 05.19.2020

Westlake Food Pantry flips script on curbside pickup

Community Services employees pre-packed bags of food for residents who registered to take part in the first day of the department's Friday Curbside Pickup program on May 15.

While many of us are supporting local restaurants by taking advantage of their curbside pickup services, the Westlake Food Pantry has flipped the script and is using the curbside pickup concept to benefit locals in need.

The Senior and Community Services Department’s new Friday Curbside Pickup program, supported by a $1,000 grant from the Community West Foundation, offers residents facing economic struggles related to the coronavirus pandemic a new, safe and discreet avenue to utilize the city’s Food Pantry. Friends and family members of residents who are struggling but unable to pickup food items themselves also are encouraged to register to use the program.

It’s a concept that has gained traction in other parts of the country and the Community Services staff in Westlake hopes it can become the norm in Northeast Ohio. Similar events have been organized in the area but not necessarily with plans to run long-term. In Westlake, the Community Services Department intends to continue to keep the program going as long as the demand is there.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:42 AM, 05.19.2020

Bay residents clear debris from Cahoon Creek

Volunteers pick up trash from the bank of Cahoon Creek on May 16. The annual citywide waterways cleanup was limited due to the coronavirus. Additional monthly creek cleanups are scheduled through the summer. Visit the Bay Village Green Team page on Facebook for details. Photo by Jennifer Hartzell

The 2020 Bay Village Spring Waterways Cleanup took place along Cahoon Creek on Saturday, May 16. This event is sponsored annually by the Bay Village Green Team, Bay High School’s Project Earth Club, The Village Foundation, and the City of Bay Village. This year, in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, the cleanup looked a little different but still provided the same results.

A total of 22 volunteers of all ages met near the top of the sledding hill along Cahoon Creek between 10 and 10:30 a.m. Groups of less than 10 were sent out to pick up trash along the creek to Lake Erie. Volunteers provided their own gloves and were strongly encouraged to use face masks and bring their own bags. Large garbage bags were provided to anyone who didn’t bring one. A limited number of trash grabbers were available to use too.

Due to storms the day before, Cahoon Creek was much deeper and rougher than normal. Unfortunately this means a lot of trash that had been on the sides of the creek was swept out to Lake Erie before the cleanup, however volunteers were still able to collect over 70 pounds! A large percentage of the waste found is plastic, which does not weigh much, so 70 pounds is impressive.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 11:28 AM, 05.19.2020

What in the Snell is Matt talking about?

It’s been a weird year so far. Now, that shouldn’t come as a profound revelation to anyone out there who’s still remotely lucid (unless you’ve been getting carried away with the hand sanitizer or you made your facemask out of paper-mâché), but I learned a long time ago to never assume anything.

With that thought in mind, I, like most of you out there, revised my perspective on 2020 a couple of months back when that intrusive, absolutely uninvited party crasher (aka coronavirus – aka COVID-19 – aka the opposite of a Happy Meal) dropped in for a visit. And, just like the unemployed 40-year-old who still resides in Mom and Pop’s basement, we have no idea how much longer it will be before he packs up and leaves – provided he ever chooses to do so.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:39 AM, 05.19.2020

Porter Library's Summer Reading Challenge will be online this year

Westlake Porter Public Library’s annual Summer Reading Challenge will be conducted solely online this year to minimize transmission of the COVID-19 virus. All the other details will be the same: Read books and attend library programs via Zoom, YouTube and other virtual means and become eligible for weekly prizes and a grand prize drawing at the end of the summer. The program will run from June 1 to Aug. 1 and is for all ages, from birth to adult.

Participants should register online via Beanstack at westlakelibrary.beanstack.org. Anyone who has previously used Beanstack to participate in library challenges like Winter Reading, 1000 Books Before Kindergarten or last year’s Summer Reading Challenge should still be able to use their account. Anyone who hasn’t used it before just needs to register.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:44 AM, 05.19.2020

Bay Chapter LWV awards scholarships

LWV scholarship winners Ellie LaMotte and John Kilbane.

The Bay Village Chapter of the League of Women Voters is pleased to announce the Bay High School recipients of the 2020 Good Citizen Scholar Awards: Ellie LaMotte and John Kilbane. These students will be awarded $1,000 each for their college expenses and were selected by the Bay High staff to whom we are grateful.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of women suffrage, the 100th anniversary of the League of Women Voters, and the 73rd anniversary of the Bay Village Chapter. As a grassroots organization with nationwide influence, the League firmly believes that each of us can make a difference by demonstrating character, scholarship and leadership.  Our scholarship winners embody that sentiment.

This memorial scholarship honors two eminent Bay League members: Maxine M. McQuate, a champion of student involvement in government, and George Serb, community historian and peerless citizen activist.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:56 AM, 05.19.2020

Ode to 'Springtease'

While I sit and contemplate the change of seasons, I note the swing between cold wet rain or sleet and mornings of song birds, blue skies and warmer days. This is a new season I’ve dubbed "Springtease."

I am confident we will get to summer days, as they arrive every year. BUT, less than welcome is the (re)appearance of a singular robin. I don’t know the life span of a robin so I don’t know if it is last year’s miscreant or an offspring with his father’s DNA.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:45 AM, 05.19.2020

Upcoming virtual events at Westlake Porter Public Library

Following is Westlake Porter Public Library’s late May and June 2020 calendar of events. All programs are subject to change. Please check westlakelibrary.org or follow the library on Facebook and Twitter (@WestlakePorter) for the latest updates.

Tuesday, May 19 (7-8 p.m.) Dogs of WPPL MeetUp – We can't wait to "meet" all the dogs of WPPL and see their special tricks and hear their stories! Participants must provide an email address to receive Zoom instructions, which will be sent the day of the program. Please register.

Wednesday, May 20 (noon-12:45 p.m.) Improve Your Mental Health Naturally – May is Mental Health Month. Join Dr. Casen DeMaria from the Drugless Doctors for this short and dynamic interactive Zoom session on tips to naturally improve your mental clarity. Please register and provide an email address. You will receive a confirmation email containing a Zoom link and instructions. 

Wednesday, May 20 (1-3 p.m.) Coping with Job/Career Loss or Change – Is this you: "I don't know what to do next? I did not see it coming!" Let's name "it" – downsizing, layoff, dismissed, fired or retired. And now the pandemic has made it worse! Feelings like denial anger, sadness and grief may occur. Accept your feelings and let's move forward! This presentation will be conducted on the Zoom platform. Registration is required so that a Zoom link and instructions can be emailed to you.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:42 AM, 05.19.2020

Additional late May and early June virtual events at Westlake Porter Public Library

Following are additions to Westlake Porter Public Library’s late May and June 2020 calendar of events. All programs are subject to change. Please check westlakelibrary.org or follow the library on Facebook and Twitter (@WestlakePorter) for the latest updates.

Thursday, May 28 (3:30-4:0 p.m.) WPPL Roblox Club – Love Roblox? Then WPPL has a club for you! We have a few private servers set up for Tweens in grades 4-6 to hang out with their friends and enjoy some of the most popular games. Please register. Participants must provide an email address to receive Zoom instructions, which will be sent the day of the program. Then we'll get everyone's screen name and admit you onto the servers. We'll keep the Zoom meeting going for anyone who wants to chat while playing or if you have any tech questions. Grades 4-6.

Tuesday, June 2 (9-11 a.m.) Kinder Club – Pick up your Kinder Club packet between 9 and 11 a.m. at the library. Each bag will contain four alphabet letter activities that will be featured on the library’s weekly Kinder Club blog (find it on the library’s website and social media). Please register.

Tuesday, June 2 (9:30-10 a.m.) Lapsit Storytime – Join Miss Jamie on Zoom for a live Lapsit Storytime for ages birth-24 months with a caregiver. Registration begins May 26. Participants must provide an email address to receive Zoom instructions, which will be sent the day of the event.

Wednesday, June 3 (11-11:30 a.m.) Stories and Signs – Join us on Facebook, YouTube or Twitter and enjoy a storytime while learning a few words in sign language. Ages 0-3.

Wednesday, June 3 (1-1:30 p.m.) Preschool Storytime – Join us for a live Preschool Storytime on Zoom! Ages 3.5 to 5 with a caregiver. Registration begins May 27. Participants must provide an email address to receive Zoom instructions, which will be sent the day of the program.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 11, Posted 12:40 PM, 05.26.2020

Bay Village 'Bow Wow Bingo' kennel fundraiser postponed

Long-term care provided to two abandoned dogs drained kennel's budget

In August of 2019, the Bay Village Police Department responded to an unsecured and abandoned home to encounter two very dehydrated and starving dogs. One of the dogs resembled a greyhound but it was in fact a young, male Bullmastiff. It stood in a secured cage, filled with urine and fecal matter. The other dog, a male Husky, was roaming inside the house, also filled with dog waste and debris. Neither one had access to food or water. A utility worker had arrived to disconnect utilities and when he saw the dogs, notified the police. A hero for the dogs!

Officers immediately removed the neglected dogs from the environment and placed them in the Bay Village kennel. The animal control officer transported the dogs to Avon Lake Animal Clinic. It was determined they were both young, un-neutered males and malnourished. Vaccine history was unknown.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 11:28 AM, 05.19.2020

A Bay Village timeline, part 3

1. Looking south across the mill pond east of the Cahoon homestead house shows new telephone poles and electric lines making an appearance.

Five events that had a great influence on the growth of the Village of Bay.

  1. Infrastructure improvements, 1905-1913. These improvements greatly changed daily life and made life easier for the families in the village. We had a new health warden and two new special policemen to help our marshal. In the spring of 1909, discussion centered on having water piped into the village. In 1913, the village has electricity; street lights are making their appearance. Telephone poles are going up along Lake Road.
  2. The Cahoon Family Will, 1917-1919. At the beginning of the year 1917, there were three Cahoon sisters still living. Lydia, 83, passed away in March, Laura became ill in June, and Ida died in November. With the death of Ida, the 115-acre Cahoon homestead property, now Cahoon Memorial Park, became the property of the citizens of the Village of Bay under the family will. This will was written by the family in 1884 when Joel Cahoon was old and very ill. Their attorney, Walter Wright (the grandson of Joel’s sister, Rebecca), structured the content of the will. Due to Ida being the last sibling to pass away, the will was forever remembered as Ida Cahoon’s Will. The will in its entirety can be found in the book, "Bay Village A Way Of Life," in the Government and Civic section. With the implementation of the will in 1919, life in the village improved. The south acreage was sold to the Board of Education and Parkview School was built on the property overlooking the new Memorial Park. The summer cottages in the park became rentals. In 1921, the farmhouse became Dover By The Bay Library housing the Pope and Cahoon books. Mrs. Pope and Mrs. Paul, dear friends  of the Cahoon sisters, living on the corner of Wolf and Cahoon roads, were asked to became the first librarians. School children left the front door of Parkview School and walked north down the sidewalk to the library. The new green space began to be used. Ball diamonds, a skating pond and a ski and sledding hills would appear as the years went by. Life began to revolve around activities planned in the park.
Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:39 AM, 05.19.2020

Spreading a second round of sunshine to Westlake seniors

Jodi Rodriguez holds two of the care packages she and other staffers at the Westlake Community Services Department delivered to 100 local seniors.

The incredibly positive response from recipients of the “100 Bags of Sunshine” initiative in March inspired the Westlake Department for Senior and Community Services to launch a second round with the help of donations from many new sponsors.

As with the first event, staff worked to identify 100 Westlake seniors that could benefit from a spirit lift during this challenging time.

Each bag included homemade cookies, greeting cards, heart-shaped stress balls, multiple puzzle books, adult coloring books, colored pencils, granola snacks, miscellaneous chocolates, pens, pill containers, tea bags and (of course) toilet paper. This time, the note that came with the toilet paper rolls read “You’ve been Tea-p’d!”

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:42 AM, 05.19.2020

How BAYarts supports artists in the time of COVID

BAYarts continues to find new ways to support local artists. 

BAYarts' mission to support artists comes in many forms. The Annual Art & Music Festival was conceived as an alternative event to other festivals that often charged large entry fees.

“The intent of this event has always been to make it affordable for artists who make their livings in this short window of summer festivals,” said BAYarts Artistic Director Karen Petkovic, “and also to keep it local and handmade.” Unfortunately, in the current crisis, this event was cancelled for the year.

BAYarts' Sullivan Family and Boldman galleries have always showcased local artists, both emerging and professional. Although BAYarts will continue to feature artists on their walls and through virtual exhibitions; the traditional gallery openings, where hundreds attend and socialize, are on hold.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:45 AM, 05.19.2020

Heroes wear many uniforms ...

Daniel Kozar

Part of a series of articles highlighting local employees going above and beyond during the coronavirus pandemic.

... and Dan Kozar wears three! A realtor’s sports jacket, a local grocer’s shirt, and an online shopper’s T-shirt!

Young people have been affected by the coronavirus, too. Many of them have had their career aspirations put on hold. Dan Kozar is no exception.

Over the years, Dan has supplemented his career dreams while working at a local grocery store. I’m sure I’m just one of many who have experienced his amazing “of service” attitude and infectious smile every time we shop.

But what we may not see is his perseverance and drive to achieve his dreams.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:46 AM, 05.19.2020

Donations sought for Senior and Community Services programs

The Westlake Department for Senior and Community Services is working tirelessly to offer virtual programs to keep residents connected and active while also continuing to provide vital social services to those in need.

These difficult times present unprecedented challenges in doing both but our residents can help by making small donations to support these programming efforts.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:42 AM, 05.19.2020

Westlake Porter Public Library's homebound service is operating

Once again Westlake Porter Public Library is offering free, monthly delivery to Westlake residents who are unable to safely visit the library due to a permanent or temporary condition. All deliveries will be contactless to ensure the safety of both patrons and library staff. For more information or to register for the Homebound Delivery Service please contact the Outreach Department at 440-250-5448.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:42 AM, 05.19.2020

Cub Scout Pack 39 info night June 2

Cub Scout Pack 39 will have an information night on Tuesday, June 2, from 6-8 p.m. The event will be at Walker Road Park pavilion, 31558 Walker Road, between Avon Lake and Bay Village. Stop by to learn more about Cub Scouting for boys and girls, grades K-5! Please contact Kristine Stylski at stylskipack39@gmail.com with any questions.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:43 AM, 05.19.2020

Westlake Community Services offers virtual programs

The Westlake Senior and Community Services Department is offering new virtual programs to keep residents engaged and to hopefully help them smile. The department is primarily using the Zoom format for the events for which meeting invitations are only emailed to those who are registered.

The department also offers the Senior Strong program, which utilizes a telephone conferencing format.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:41 AM, 05.19.2020

Meals on Wheels partners with Westlake business to support restaurant program

As a result of the COVID-19 virus, public and private partnerships have become very innovative with positive results. An example of this is a sponsorship of meals to be provided to Westlake Meals on Wheels (WMOW) recipients by local business, All Metal Sales in Westlake. A program initiated by WMOW pairs residents of the community wanting to donate with local restaurants to provide meals.

All Metal Sales became aware of the program and wanted to help. Owner Tom Klocker initiated the relationship by donating 400 disposable masks that will aid delivery drivers and those preparing meals in the WMOW kitchen. In addition, All Metal Sales reached out to Barry Bagels in Avon to be part of the program. Barry Bagels is being sponsored by All Metal Sales to provide a meal to 75 WMOW recipients every Wednesday for a month.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:44 AM, 05.19.2020

Hospice of the Western Reserve to hold virtual 'Walk to Remember'

West Shore families partcipating in the Virtual Walk to Remember can download and display a window sign to share their support. 

The coronavirus pandemic has impacted every organization in our community and Hospice of the Western Reserve is no exception. To protect everyone’s safety, the nonprofit agency made the difficult decision this year to replace Walk to Remember, its largest community fundraising event, with a virtual walk.

Now through June 14, families can go online and register to walk in their neighborhood or anywhere they choose to raise funds supporting HWR’s work, including special programs for hospice home care patients in the West Shore communities and at Ames Family Hospice House in Westlake. To register for Virtual Walk to Remember, visit hospicewr.org/wtr. The registration donation is $20.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:45 AM, 05.19.2020

Westlake Rec hosts virtual sports league

Video game enthusiasts are invited to compete in the Westlake Recreation Department's Virtual Sports League. Registration is open through May 28 and the tournament starts June 1.

Competitors will be able to show off their virtual basketball skills in NBA 2K20 and on a simulated gridiron in Madden NFL 20 with separate divisions for Xbox and PlayStation gamers. Registration is open to players ages 12 and up. The league format will depend on the number of registered participants.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 10, Posted 10:47 AM, 05.19.2020

We need your help!

Since 2009 the Observer has strived to fulfill our founding mission – to strengthen our community by informing and engaging Westlake and Bay Village residents. 

Times are tough, and the pandemic has presented an added challenge at a time when emotional connection and togetherness matter so much. Please help us continue to provide a free medium where the community can share news, share stories and share laughs.

If you’d like to keep the Observer serving the community, please send a cash or check donation along with your name for recognition in a future edition of the Observer. Donations may also be made via credit card using the links in the left column of the website. All supporters will be recognized in a future edition of the Observer.

Please make checks payable to WBV Observer and mail to: 451 Queenswood Drive, Bay Village, OH 44140.

The Observer is an independent, community owned publication. Please note that charitable contributions are gratefully accepted but not tax-deductible. For questions about donating or more information on how to get involved, contact publishers Denny Wendell or Tara Wendell at 440-409-0114, staff@wbvobserver.com.

Read Full Story
Volume 12, Issue 8, Posted 12:43 PM, 04.21.2020