AKRON

First Night volunteers

AKRON: Volunteers are needed to help with First Night, the annual New Year’s Eve celebration in downtown Akron that showcases arts and entertainment to the community.

More than 400 people are needed to greet guests, check buttons, introduce performers, assist with hands-on activities, track attendance and serve as bus hosts.

“Volunteers are the face of First Night,” said Suzie Graham, president of Downtown Akron Partnership.

Volunteers are admitted free to all performances and sites before or after a shift. Two shifts are available: 5:30 to 9 p.m. and 8:30 to 11:30 p.m.

Training sessions will be held Dec. 9-14 at the Akron-Summit County Public Library main branch and the Firestone Park and Ellet libraries. Morning, evening and weekend sessions are available, with sessions lasting about 90 minutes.

Applications and details are available at www.firstnightakron.org/volunteers or by contacting volunteer coordinator Jane Startzman at 330-535-3179, ext. 206, or jstartzman@akroncivic.com.

CUYAHOGA FALLS

Subway robbery

CUYAHOGA FALLS: Cuyahoga Falls police are looking for a young woman who said she had a weapon and robbed the Subway restaurant at 1939 State Road about 10 p.m. Wednesday and then drove away.

No one was reported hurt in the incident and no weapon was observed by restaurant employees.

Police said they were called to the restaurant about 10:05 p.m.

Employees said the woman told them she had a weapon and asked for all the money in the cash register. The woman was handed an undisclosed amount of money.

Police said the suspect was a light-skinned black woman in her early 20s, about 5 feet 6 inches tall and weighing about 200 pounds. She wore a gray, zip-up hooded sweatshirt, dark-colored pants and a checkered grey and white scarf.

After taking the money, the woman jumped in a white, four-door Chevrolet sedan driven by a black male. The car then drove southbound on State Road toward Akron, police said.

CUYAHOGA VALLEY

Winter hours

New winter hours for the visitor centers in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park go into effect on Dec. 1.

The hours will be in place December through February. All park facilities will be closed Dec. 25 and Jan. 1.

The Boston Store Visitor Center in Boston Township is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays and 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekends. Snowshoe rental will be available.

The Canal Visitor Center in Valley View remains closed for remodeling. The Hunt Farm center in Cuyahoga Falls is closed for the winter.

The Peninsula Depot is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekends from Nov. 30 through Dec. 15 and Jan. 18 through Feb. 23.

The park’s Winter Sports Center in Boston Township is open weekends from Dec. 7 to 22, Jan. 4 to Feb. 23, and Jan. 20 and Feb. 17 (federal holidays). There must be at least 4 inches of snow. Hours: 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Call 330-657-2752.

STOW

Coughlin swearing-in

STOW: Former state Sen. Kevin Coughlin, who successfully sued for his right to run nonpartisan, will take the oath of office for Stow Municipal Court clerk at 10 a.m. Monday.

Stow Judge Kim Hoover, who also ran nonpartisan and won, will administer Coughlin’s oath in his courtroom.

The Summit County elections board denied Coughlin ballot access after he filed to run as a nonpartisan because of his ties to the Republican Party. Coughlin filed a challenge in the Ohio Supreme Court, saying he had as much right to run as nonpartisan as Hoover. The court agreed. Coughlin beat Democratic and Republican candidates in the Nov. 5 election.

state news

Turnpike survey

BEREA: Holiday travelers on the Ohio Turnpike will get an online chance to grade their experience on the toll road.

The turnpike has launched what it calls its first comprehensive travel survey.

A key goal of the survey is finding out why motorists might choose the turnpike over a parallel route across northern Ohio.

The 241-mile turnpike also wants to know why some motorists pay tolls in cash rather than using the E-ZPass electronic payment system.

The survey takes about five minutes to complete and participants can enter a drawing for three $100 gift cards. The survey will be open through Dec. 11.

Little art

CLEVELAND: The Cleveland Museum of Art is showing its entire collection of portrait miniatures for the first time in more than a half century.

The exhibit, called Disembodied: Portrait Miniatures and Their Contemporary Relatives, opened this month and continues through Feb. 16.

The collection of about 170 portraits spans six centuries and includes a dozen new acquisitions.

The small works typically were done on vellum or slivers of ivory and were exchanged as tokens of affection.

Museum curator Cory Korkow says the miniatures bring people into a close relationship with the art subject.

Chase lawsuit

CLEVELAND: The estates of two people shot and killed by Cleveland police during a chase that involved more than 60 squad cars and 137 shots fired have sued the city and police.

The lawsuit was filed electronically Thursday in federal court against Mayor Frank Jackson, the safety director, police chief, and dozens of officers, supervisors and dispatchers.

The lawsuit seeks improved police procedures and unspecified damages on behalf of the families of driver Timothy Russell and his passenger, Malissa Williams.

Russell was shot 23 times and Williams was shot 24 times one year ago.

There was no immediate comment from city officials in response to email requests.

Their union says police fired because the driver fled and was trying to ram officers with his car.

Rec funding

COLUMBUS: Ohio has approved state and federal grants to help develop and improve public access for outdoor recreation facilities across the state.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources approved and will administer the NatureWorks and Land and Water Conservation Fund grants.

The department has recommended that more than $2 million in NatureWorks grants and more than a half-million dollars in grants from the conservation fund be awarded to communities across the state.

Officials say the grants will support the acquisition of more than 30 acres of green space, the development and improvement of 28 playgrounds, 11 shelters and gazebos, nine park restrooms and dozens of other local improvement projects.

The NatureWorks and Land and Water Conservation Fund grants provide reimbursement assistance for acquisition, development and rehabilitation of recreational areas.