The Van Wert County Courthouse

Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021

Submitted information

The Van Wert Area Retired Teachers Association will meet for a holiday luncheon program at 12 p.m. Friday, December 10 at Willow Bend Country Club.

The Van Wert High School Select Choir, under the direction of Melissa Bloomfield, will share holiday music with attendees to begin the gathering. The festive luncheon menu includes beef tips in burgundy sauce, mashed potatoes, broccoli vegetable blend, dinner roll, a special Christmas dessert, and coffee and tea. The meal cost is $11 with a reservation required by December 8 to Jean Minnig at 419.203.0642.

VWARTA member Rita Hurless, also a Salvation Army Board member, will be “ringing the bell” for donations to the Kettle Campaign, which helps local families in need.

VWARTA dues of $10 for 2022 will be accepted at this meeting and volunteer hours for time given to local non-profit groups in the Van Wert area communities will be collected. VWARTA members will also hold an election for new officers for 2022.

For more information on membership in ORTA or in the Van Wert Area Retired Teachers Association, please contact President Deb Kleinhenz at 419.203.2283.

POSTED: 12/03/21 at 4:42 am. FILED UNDER: Lifestyles, News

Van Wert Lodge 1197, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, recently recognized Debra Laudick as Van Wert Lodge’s “Elk of the Year” for the 2020-2021 Lodge Year.  Laudick was presented with a special certificate issued by the Grand Lodge and signed by Grand Exalted Ruler Paul R. Ryan. The “Elk Of The Year” is awarded by a lodge to one of its members who performs extra service “above and beyond” to the lodge and its charitable works. Shown are (from the left) Van Wert Exalted Ruler Mary Weisman and Debra Laudick. Elks photo

POSTED: 09/29/21 at 9:43 pm. FILED UNDER: Lifestyles

Isaac Van Wart Daughters of the American Revolution met recently at Wild Hare Barbecue. New members inducted are (from the left) Cathy Jewel Johnson, Nancy Ransbottom Smith, and Kari Girod Casto. The group’s next meeting will be at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, October 6, at Willow Bend Country Club. The speaker will be Dave Walker, a local historical reenactor, who will make a presentation on “Our Founding Fathers.” Guests are welcome to attend and lunch will be ordered from the Willow Bend menu. DAR photo 

POSTED: 09/27/21 at 10:04 pm. FILED UNDER: Lifestyles

Independent staff and submitted information

The Lincolnview High School Class of 1971 recently gathered at Willow Bend Country Club to celebrate its 50-year reunion.  

Prior to the dinner, interested classmates were given a tour of the Lincolnview campus by Superintendent Jeff Snyder, who was thanked by class members for providing the interesting and enjoyable tour. 

Following dinner provided by the country club and a short business meeting, classmates spent the rest of the evening socializing, sharing stories and laughs, and just reminiscing about the good old days.  

Class members who attended include (front row, from the left) Carol (Harter) Lininger, Kathy (Germann) Schaadt, Debbie (Long) Jessee, Brenda (Perry) Berres, Joyce (Mihm) Buettner, Karen (Cole) Leinenkugel, Glenna (Dunlap) Saum; (middle row) Bernie Schaadt, Mike Wolfcale, Kathy (Dolby) Rahrig, Mary Jo (Richards) Miller, Jill (Kiehl) Graves, Suzi (Dunlap) Bagley, Joan (Schneider) Germann, Maggie (Evans) Snyder, Kathy Foust, Susan (Profit) Hinchcliff, Nancy (Ringwald) Hoose; Larry Lloyd, Jay Swygart, Steve DuVall, Mike McGinnis, Bill Poe, Roy Cooper, Jim Snyder, Stan Hitchcock, Rick Thatcher, Jerry Hessel, Bill Evans, Dave Evans, Dana Ries, Charlie Wilkin, Doug Snyder, and Bill Sanderson. 

POSTED: 09/18/21 at 1:39 am. FILED UNDER: Lifestyles

Independent staff and submitted information

The Van Wert High School Class of 1961’s 60th reunion scheduled for September 18 has been postponed.
The decision was made due to rising health and well-being concerns for each individual. 

A new date of June 11, 2022, has been set for reunion and new information will be forthcoming. Those who need refunds for this year can contact Sandra (Hipsley) Wilson at

POSTED: 08/27/21 at 10:57 pm. FILED UNDER: Lifestyles

Independent staff and submitted information

The 44th John George Schumm Family Reunion will be held this year on Sunday, August 1, on the grounds of Zion Lutheran Church in Schumm.   

A catered lunch (asking a donation for the meal) will be served at noon or bring a packed picnic lunch. Beverages and ice cream will be available.  

Speaker for the afternoon will be Spank Schumm of Rockford, who will share historical information about the area. A self-guided cemetery tour, a magic show, and a caricature artist will also provide entertainment.  

There will also be a map display offered by family member and professor Dr. Harold Moellering, as well as a display of early Schumm artifacts, including the 1692 family bible.

Family members are urged to attend the reunion. The church is located at 17434 Schumm Road, Willshire. Family genealogy can be viewed by visiting the church website at and clicking the “About Us” link. The reunion Facebook page can be found at John George Schumm Family, or email

POSTED: 06/11/21 at 11:57 pm. FILED UNDER: Lifestyles

Staff and submitted information

Van Wert Lodge 1197, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, recently donated $100 to the Van Wert Peony Festival Committee.

The monies are to go towards the Peony Festival Scholarship Program. The Elks, nationally, are only second to the United States government in the number of scholarships that are given out each year. 

Van Wert Elks Lodge is proud to be a contributor each year to this important scholarship program.

POSTED: 05/13/21 at 11:10 pm. FILED UNDER: Lifestyles

First United Methodist Church, 113 W. Central Ave., recently collected items for Pregnancy Life Center. The month of April was set aside as Baby Shower month. Items collected include five crib sheets, 13 receiving blankets, seven bottles of baby lotion, five bottles of baby sunscreen, four packages of pull-ups, eight cases of diapers, 17 packages of diapers, and 27 packages of baby wipes. Shown are Dru Johnson and Julie Burenga with the donated items. First UM Church photo

POSTED: 05/10/21 at 7:02 am. FILED UNDER: Church, Lifestyles

Staff and submitted information

The Van Wert County Board of Developmental Disabilities mission is “through respect and support, the VWCBDD partners with people, families, and communities to foster independence and pathways to individual success. 

VWCBDD has specific services an individual will need at the time they are approved for eligibility and are adjusted for what they need in the future. Those include school age, transition age, adult, family support, and crisis intervention services. VWCBDD’s biggest goal is inclusion and being involved in the community.

Van Wert County Board of Developmental Disabilities clients have fun during a pool party at the YMCA. photo provided

The YMCA of Van Wert County hosted a pool party for the VWCBDD on March 20 in celebration of Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month. The month of March highlights the many ways in which people with and without disabilities come together to form strong, diverse communities. 

Paula Miller and volunteers from the VWCBDD and the YMCA will be at Camp Clay on May 1 to help clean up for the 2021 summer season. In addition, each volunteer will receive a free swim pass for the Camp Clay Aqua Park. Anyone else interested in joining the cleanup day should contact Kevin Morrison at  

The YMCA’s mission is to put Christian principles into practice through programs that help healthy spirit, mind, and body for all. 

The YMCA of Van Wert County is partially funded by the Van Wert County Foundation and is a United Way agency.

POSTED: 04/22/21 at 12:52 am. FILED UNDER: Lifestyles, Youth

Staff and submitted information

Van Wert Lodge 1197, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, recently installed its officers for the 2021-2022 lodge year.

Shown are (from the left) past exalted ruler and installing officer Keith Collins, Exalted Ruler Shane Mills, and immediate past exalted ruler Mary Yackey. Elks photo

Shane M. Mills was installed as the new exalted ruler — the top position in the Van Wert Lodge.     

The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks are known for their promotion of Americanism, drug abuse education, and support of youth activities and the nation’s veterans. The Elks are second only to the United States government in providing scholarships each year to students. The Ohio Elks major project is the treatment of Cerebral Palsy.

POSTED: 04/05/21 at 10:42 pm. FILED UNDER: Lifestyles