AKRON

Council meeting

AKRON: The Neighborhood Network of University Park has invited newly elected council members that represent part of the community to participate in a panel discussion at its next meeting 6-8 p.m.

The meeting will take place at Family of Faith United Methodist Church, 800 E. Market St.

Dinner will be provided.

For more information, email co.nnupark@gmail.com.

Cabinet appointment

AKRON: Chris Ludle, who has been the highway maintenance superintendent, is Akron’s new deputy public service director.

Ludle replaces Phil Montgomery, whom Mayor Jeff Fusco appointed last week as the chief information officer. Rick Schmahl, the former chief information officer, resigned to become the state’s Multi-Agency Radio Communications System program director.

Ludle has been with the Public Service Department for a decade and, prior to that, worked for 10 years for Rubbermaid. He will begin his new position Tuesday and will earn $106,454 a year.

Dominion grants $30,000

AKRON: Dominion Resources, parent company of Dominion East Ohio, recently announced that it is providing $30,000 in Critical Community Needs grants to three Akron-area organizations that help feed, shelter and care for people in need.

The company is distributing a total $1 million through its charitable foundation across 12 states this holiday season, including $150,000 to 26 Ohio organizations.

Akron Dominion grant recipients are:

• Hattie Larlham Foundation, Akron: $15,000 to support its Farm to Table with Hattie Larlham Food Hub program.

• Opportunity Parish Neighborhood Ministry, Akron: $10,000 for its OPEN M Free Clinic Education program.

• Family Promise of Summit County, Akron: $5,000 for its Going Home Staying Home program.

CUYAHOGA VALLEY

Winter park hours

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

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 4:30 p.m. daily.

The Canal Exploration Center in Valley View is open from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

The Hunt House in Cuyahoga Falls is closed for the winter.

The park’s Winter Sports Center at the Kendall Lake Shelter off Truxell Road in Boston Township is open weekends from Dec. 12 to Dec. 20 and Jan. 2 through Feb. 28, daily from Dec. 21-31 and on Jan. 19 and Feb. 15 (federal holidays).

There must be at least 4 inches of snow.

Hours are 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Call 330-657-2752 for snow updates.

HIRAM COLLEGE

$100,000 Mellon grant

HIRAM: Hiram College has received a $100,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support Hiram Connect, a program that connects students’ classroom and internship/hands-on experiences to their future careers.

It’s the first grant Hiram has received from the Mellon Foundation.

“It’s an endorsement for the way we intend to teach the liberal arts and prepare students for their careers and callings through Hiram Connect,” Vice President and Dean Robert Haak said in a prepared statement.

For more details on the program, go to: www.hiram.edu/connect.

MEDINA

Trees for Troops

MEDINA: Trees for Troops, an annual program of Medina Christmas Tree Farms, will again be collecting and shipping Christmas trees to troops stationed all over the country and overseas this year.

Price is $39 per tree. Community members, businesses and organizations in Northern Ohio may donate one or more trees by downloading a subscription form available at http://medinatrees.com, then sending it along with a check to Medina Christmas Tree Farms, to Charles Reichheld at 3313 Hamilton Road, Medina, OH 44256.

Email address is medinatrees@gmail.com.

There will be a trailer on the Butler Farm Dec. 6-7 to ship freshly-cut and netted trees to troops at one of 50 military bases. Medina Tree Farms will pay for shipping in coordination with Federal Express and donate an additional $5 per tree to the program.

Donations are directed through the nonprofit Christmas Tree foundation and may be tax deductible.

STATE NEWS

Grants support recovery

COLUMBUS: State officials have awarded $2.5 million in grants to expand housing for Ohioans recovering from drug and alcohol problems.

Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services officials say that brings the state’s investment in recovery housing to $12.5 million over three years.

The grants will go to 25 projects in 18 counties, adding a total of about 200 new beds.

Agency Director Tracy Plouck says the housing provides a safe, supportive environment to help those in recovery adjust to sobriety, get jobs and seek permanent housing.

Another $2.5 million in grants will be released the next fiscal year.

The agency says studies have shown that people who live in recovery housing have a significantly better chance of staying clean and sober after two years than those in other environments.

STARK STATE

AIDS Day

JACKSON TWP.: Stark State College will host a free performance of We Rise at 7 p.m. Wednesday at its Business and Entrepreneurial Center, 6200 Frank Ave. NW, as part of its World’s AIDs Day commemoration.

The play was written by Canton businessman Todd Walburn.

AIDS Awareness Week events sponsored by the Xi Zeta TriBeta Club of Stark State will be held Thursday. All are open to the community:

• 2:30 p.m.: Showing of the film And the Band Played On.

• 5 p.m.: The talk “The Early History of AIDS” presented by Dr. Tom Campbell.

• 5:25 p.m.: The talk “Charlie Sheen, Magic Johnson and the Social Blemish of HIV: Stigma and PLWHA” by professor Martina Sharp-Grier.

• 6 p.m.: Panel discussion on “The Facts, the Impact, the Advocacy.”

The college also will display panels from the AIDS Memorial Quilt from Monday through Thursday.

For more information about the AIDS quilt, call 330-494-6170 ext. 4667 or email kchhay@starkstate.edu.

For information about the performance of We Rise, call 330-451-0924.