The Columbus Foundation’s Big Give is back!
Starting at 11 a.m. EST on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 through Wednesday, September 18, 2013 at 11 a.m. EST, all donations to Heritage Ohio, and 600 nonprofits, will receive a pro rata portion of a $1 million dollar bonus pool.
Make a donation* of $20 or more to support Heritage Ohio through the Big Give between 11am on Tuesday September 17 to 11am Wednesday September 18 3013 and you’ll be entered into a drawing for some fabulous Heritage Ohio prizes! Stay tuned for more information. Donations through The Big Give are not applicable to membership dues or event fees, but are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.
The Big Give is a 24-hour online giving event to celebrate The Spirit of Columbus.™ The Columbus Foundation, its family of donors, and community partners have provided a $1 million bonus pool for The Big Give, encouraging the community to support the nonprofits they care about in central Ohio. By working together, our community can show its spirit and increase the impact of its giving!
Heritage Ohio members are invited to join Mark Lammon from the Downtown Cleveland Alliance for a discussion about Special Improvement Districts. This webinar will have three parts 1) creation of a special improvement district and technical assistance; 2) managing the relationship and implementing the district plan; and 3) expansion and relationships outside of the SID. To register members should click HERE
That’s right! The Gentlemen of the Road Troy Stopover is happening August 30-31, and we’re saying “Thank you!” to our Facebook friends and Heritage Ohio members. You have a chance to win two passes (camping passes also included) by entering our contest below. In the comments section below just let us know which Ohio Treasure you would save and why, and you’re entered. Anyone who has liked us on Facebook and is a current Heritage Ohio member is eligible to win! If you’re not yet a member, you can easily and quickly join online here. If you haven’t like us on Facebook yet, you can do so here.
Our contest closes one week from today, Monday, August 19, at 5pm and we’ll announce the winner Monday at 6pm. Good luck!
It’s May, so you know what that means: Preservation Month!
This year, the National Trust for Historic Preservation has chosen the theme “See! Save! Celebrate!” to help spur the creative juices when it comes to highlighting preservation in your community. Here are three ways you can recognize Preservation Month in your community using the Trust’s theme.
See! Architectural Scavenger Hunt
What better way to get your residents to take a fresh look at your historic resources than by holding an architectural scavenger hunt? Long-time residents may see your historic neighborhoods in a new light, and new residents may be interested in a fun activity such as this to learn more about a community’s special buildings.
The idea is to identify unique architectural features that make your historic buildings special (elaborate window designs, stained glass transoms, intricate cornices) and then to publish a guide of the features. Contestants then investigate the neighborhood to match the feature to the building and its location, and enter a drawing for a prize. The prize doesn’t have to be especially elaborate. A popular item I’ve seen is gift certificates to community businesses for the winner.
Save! Hold a special lecture on the importance of historic preservation
Whether you’re focused on the benefits of preserving historic wooden windows, or the architectural history of your community, preservation at its heart is about preserving the special, unique qualities of our built environment. Your historic buildings and neighborhoods are absolutely unique to your community, and your residents will care so much more about your historic stock when they learn what it is about a building’s architecture and history that makes it unique.
In Main Street we’re always selling the importance of using existing assets as the foundation of building a great revitalization program, so let people know about your historic assets. What exactly provides the character that makes your town unlike any other? An old building that’s just known as an old building is too easy to forget and neglect, but a building with stories and architectural character can become a landmark and a source of preservation pride.
Celebrate! Recognize your community’s preservation accomplishments with an awards ceremony
Recognize recent building rehabs, tireless volunteers, and leadership organizations with a special ceremony, giving your recipients a chance to take a victory lap in front of their peers and neighbors. Preservation Awards hardly ever include a cash prize, but that’s ok because public recognition is a powerful way to say “thank you” to someone who is raising the profile of preservation in your community.
To add some weight to the awards process, look at partnering with another entity. For example, the Michigan SHPO partners with the governor’s office to present the “Governor’s Awards for Historic Preservation.” The ceremony is held at the state capitol and you can bet recipients feel honored to be recognized in such an important setting.
Heritage Ohio is celebrating May as Preservation Month in a couple different ways. We’re holding our annual photography contest (and we’ve extended the deadline for entries to May 24), and we will honor the best accomplishments in preservation & revitalization at our Annual Awards Luncheon on May 23, during our annual conference. We hope you’ll submit a photo, join us in Columbus at our Annual Awards Luncheon, or participate in a local Preservation Month activity as we all work to raise the profile of preservation in Ohio.
If you missed the vacant property workshop or you’d like to review the materials, you can find them all below.
- Sandusky Vacant Property Ordinance
- Vacant/Abandoned Building Evaluation Form
- Commercial/Industrial Vacant Building Plan
I hope you’re planning to join us next Thursday in downtown Wooster for our Cash Mob Wine Tasting, a joint benefit for SoMar Wine Cellars, Main Street Wooster, and Heritage Ohio (info on the particulars here) for just $20.
When is getting mobbed a good thing? When it’s a Cash Mob descending upon a downtown retailer. There’s something special about thanking a local retailer in an intimate setting for his or her efforts to make the downtown a better place to live, work, shop, and play.
We think the following quote from Robert Mondavi aptly represents both the value of wine, and the value of nonprofit organizations helping people here in Ohio to live better: “Wine is art. It’s culture. It’s the essence of civilization and the art of living.”
We look forward to seeing you in Wooster next week!
PS Did you know that the concept of the Cash Mob began right here in Ohio (even though the term was first used in New York state)? This webpage has details about the concept, what it means, and how the event may evolve and change in the future.
Today, Heritage Ohio co-hosted along with Ohio’s Hill Country Heritage Area, our 2nd Annual Appalachia Heritage Luncheon at the Statehouse. The purpose of the luncheon was to introduce successful projects to Ohio legislators and to show them how cultural programs are having a positive impact on the Appalachia economy. Thirteen speakers shared success stories ranging from Main Street to historic tax credits to singing the Paw-Paw song. It was inspiring.
The stories of success can be applied anywhere in Ohio. Using the cultural assets in your community will help distinguish your strengths and enhance your identity, making your community more competitive in our ever-changing economy. Those places that choose to be all things to all people become so generic they have lost their soul.
The luncheon was recorded via the Ohio Channel and will be available for viewing at www.ohiochannel.org beginning 9/27/12.
Thanks go to hosts Sen. Tim Schaffer (District 31) and Jason Wilson, Director of the Governor’s Office of Appalachia for their support. Thanks also goes to the wonderful insiders tour provided by Bob Loversidge, architect of the statehouse.
This event has grown in importance – watch for your invitation to a bigger event in Fall of 2013.
To paraphrase eloquent speaker Julie Zickefoose: Appalachia’s wealth is on top of the shale.
I’m in London this week, and miraculously there is not rain in the forecast the entire time I’m here! Part of my vacation assignment was to write something on our blog about my trip. On the long flight from Dallas to London, I wondered what exactly I was going to write about. London offers a lot interesting topics to cover over preservation, revitalization, or whatever else flitted into my sleep-deprived head. But once I landed and made my way to Tower Hill and my hotel, my mind wandered into familiar territory for preservationists: Why does Europe seem to be more capable of reusing its older buildings and resisting the urge to tear them down?
These are more musings to myself than hardened fact, but here are a few thoughts I’ve had over the past few days:
- Some people back home say Americans are too progress oriented, but so are Londoners. Looking just around the Tower Hill area, there are several skyscrapers and plenty of modern buildings. But there are also plenty of older buildings as well. Some have been completely remodeled, while others look virtually untouched since they were constructed over a century ago. I think many of the banking sector employees across from my hotel would definitively say London is progress-minded, just like themselves. But I also think they have an appreciation for the past that is part of their cultural identities, both the the native Britons and the many foreigners who now call London home.
- On the topic of national/community identity, it is really interesting how Americans are unique in this realm, and I do think this may factor into our views of our own communities. I remember long ago, when I was an undergraduate, I was having a conversation with a Belgian girl. She asked me where my family was from. Like any American, I rattled off the list of countries where my ancestors hailed from and she immediately scoffed at the notion that I was anything other than an American. What she wanted to know was if I was from Ohio, or did my family lives somewhere else in The US. She hated that Americans tried to keep their heritage attached to places other than America, Europeans would never do such a thing (her opinion). She does make a good point though. Why do we as Americans hold multiple cultural heritages? Many of us have not met our family members who emigrated and came to America. Even more of us have never visited the country of family origin. But it remains important to us. [Pure speculation here] I wonder if/when Americans do embrace being “just American” with no ethic hyphens attached, will Americans develop a deeper appreciation for the cultural heritage of America? The buildings that defined our golden ages? There’s no way of knowing, but I think when we become “just American”, we’re going to see a growing importance in our cultural history. More than just we’re #1.
- One myth I hear frequently is “We tear our buildings down. In Europe, that doesn’t happen”. While it’s a generalization, I think it affects how American preservationists view the two worlds. Having been in London a for a little over a day, clearly things have been torn down and are going to be as the city continues to grow. A city this old has had plenty of fires, misguided development ventures (None more than those stucco and brick apartments near Hammersmith I saw off the Piccadilly line. Absolutely horrific.), and the like. We romanticize a certain period of time, have architectural styles we all love and others we wouldn’t miss. While London may have a few buildings that are a thousand years old, we have to look at how many of them survived, why, and what replaced the ones which did not. I often wonder if we, the old building lovers of America, would be so angry with old buildings being torn down if it were replaced with a building that was architecturally stunning, constructed with quality materials, and was meant to last more than 20 years? I think we would, but maybe we’d be a little less angry at what the suggested replacement was.
Now I’ve left out a lot of this discussion. Politics, funding, economic conditions, etc. Preservation and reuse of historic buildings is an amazingly complex issue, but we should be fortunate enough to be able to tackle it. So, what do you see as the most important root causation to our preservation issues in America? Let’s us know below in the comments section.
I’ll be share plenty of photos of my visit to London on Heritage Ohio’s Facebook page. Look for them to start appearing in the next few days.
Everyone involved in Ohio history activities, from archivists, to collections, to building preservation is excited to finally have the Ohio History Fund, created by the donations of Ohioan’s at tax time. We each now have the opportunity to contribute various amount when we file our Ohio Tax Returns. Thousands of dollars will be available through this grant program. If you are interested in applying, link here to read more about the fund, and then submit a letter of intent to apply to get the process started.
David Wilding, and his entry “Veteran’s Day Tribute”
Ohio’s preservation community has spoken, and after hundreds of votes, David Wilding’s entry is the winner of our Preservation Month Photo Contest! Look for David’s image of the mural on the next cover of Revitalize Ohio (which, by the way, you can view in downtown Amherst).
As an added bonus, David will receive a complimentary one-night stay at the Mead House Bed & Breakfast in Nelsonville.
Thanks to everyone who entered their images, and to everyone who voted for their favorite. And thanks to Sue Maxwell at the Mead House for supplying the bonus stay!
While the 2013 Preservation Month Photo Contest is many months away, you never know where or when you’ll find that winning image. Keep your camera handy, capture those evocative historic preservation images, and enter your best photo next year.