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Year in Review 2014: Village Life

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2014 brings cold weather to village
The village experienced record cold in early January, with a late afternoon temperature of -6 degrees on Monday, Jan. 6, and temperatures dropping to the negative teens overnight, with windchill around -30 degrees. While some businesses took a hit, the village came through the cold relatively unscathed.

Saari is pastor at First Presbyterian
The Reverend Aaron Saari became the full-time pastor at First Presbyterian Church in January.

Fox, Campbell retire from Village
Public Works Supervisor Kelley Fox, head of the electric and water distribution crews, retired in early 2014 after 30 years of working for the Village. Larry Campbell also retired after nearly 45 years of service to the village — first as a police officer, then as part of the public works department and finally as an emergency dispatcher.

Neuhardt runs on Dem governor ticket
In January, it was announced that villager Sharen Neuhardt had been selected to be the running mate of Democratic candidate Ed FitzGerald, who challenged Governor John Kasich in November. The Democratic ticket lost to Kasich.

40 years of community service feted
The Yellow Springs Community Foundation celebrated 40 years of service to the community in 2014. In commemoration of the anniversary, YSCF teamed up with WYSO, audio editor Lauren Shows and photographers Matthew Collins and Dennie Eagleson to produce a series of soundslide pieces chronicling the work the nonprofit has done over the years. The final piece debuted at an anniversary gala in September.

Students talk racism in schools
Current and former Yellow Springs High School students spoke about racism in the local schools and how to empower local black youth at a panel discussion in April, sponsored by the 365 Project and held at AU Midwest.

Local mental health groups formed
NAMI Yellow Springs formed in 2014, and in May, announced the formation of two peer-led groups to meet locally for those living with mental illness and their families. The group also spearheaded a mental health first aid training workshop, with the participation of the Human Relations Commission, in October.

Skate park gets updates and repairs
This summer, organizers from the Village Public Arts Commission partnered with users of the village skate park to commit both community funds and Village government earmarks to fully renovate the park.

Local resident killed by lightning strike
Local resident Rebecca Teilhet was killed on July 11 in Denver, Colo., when she was struck by lightning while hiking.

Voting activists try to take on Perales
Local activists with Working America pressured Ohio Rep. Rick Perales (R-Beavercreek) this spring and summer to explain his decisions on changes to Ohio voting laws, which Democrat leaders said were aimed at reducing Democratic turnout. Despite several attempts to schedule a meeting with Perales to discuss the changes, Working America’s Community Action Team was unable to work out a time or location to meet with Perales.

Home, Inc., Village team up for housing
The Wyant family of Yellow Springs broke ground on their new affordable home on Cemetery Street on August 25. Theirs was the first of four Home, Inc. houses slated for the municipally-owned property as part of the Village’s first affordable housing project.

Food Pantry head to step down
Patty McAllister, who has led the Yellow Springs Area Food Pantry for eight years, announced that she would step down in 2015. Board members sought to fill the gap and recruit new volunteers from the wider community.

Local women inducted to Hall of Fame
Villagers Aïda Merhemic and Susan Stiles were inducted into the Greene County Women’s Hall of Fame in September

YS activists march for climate change
Yellow Springs climate change activists made a trip to New York City to participate in the worldwide People’s Climate March on Sept. 21, in one of the largest climate change protests in history.

Villagers get gold at Gay Games
Villagers Delaine Adkins, Kristine Hofstra and Judy Kintner came away from the 2014 Gay Games with gold medals. The Gay Games were held in Cleveland.

Kennedy celebrates a century
On Oct. 19, longtime Yellow Springs resident Lloyd Kennedy celebrated his 100th birthday at the First Presbyterian Church.

EQAT protests bank, mining practice
In early December, community members, led by organizers from Earth Quaker Action Team, staged a nonviolent action at a regional branch of PNC Bank in protest of the bank’s investments in mining companies that use the mountaintop removal mining process. Though PNC Bank is not the only financial institution to hold such investments, it was the focus of the protest due to its claim to be a “green” bank and its Quaker roots.

Villagers join nationwide protests
The Yellow Springs Area Justice for John Crawford Group joined a group of about 100 people in Xenia at the Greene County Courthouse to protest the killing of Beavercreek resident John Crawford by a police officer in August. Crawford’s death was one of several cases nationally this year in which unarmed African-American men were killed by police officers who were not prosecuted for the deaths. The Xenia protest became a weekly event, and in December about 200 protestors, including many from Yellow Springs, took the protest to the Beavercreek Walmart, where Crawford was killed.


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