Community workers, volunteers lauded

JANELLE PATTERSON The Marietta Times Passiflora Studio Owner Caroline Waller goes through flowers in her garden Monday.

Good neighbors, joint events with nonprofit teams and physical space improvements have several individuals and businesses up for recognition this week.

“I didn’t even know about the nomination until I opened up an email today,” said Caroline Waller, owner of Passiflora Studio in Harmar. “It’s exciting, and I can’t wait to go Thursday and celebrate everybody.”

Waller was nominated for the Best Neighbor Award, through Marietta Main Street’s Downtown Celebration.

The annual event honors business owners and champions of downtown events with an evening of recognition and this year there is much to laud, said President-Elect Tim Glover.

“Without the volunteers and the people who bring out their families to volunteer we couldn’t make such successful events happen,” he said. “I nominated someone for every award, like Denyse Fordham who has brought her family to help decorate for Christmas downtown plus she’s a spokesman that gathers donations for our cause everywhere.”

Awards include those for outstanding collaboration, building improvements, community building, overachiever of the year and best neighbor with each category boasting three to five nominees.

“And all of those nominations came from the community,” said Main Street Director Sam Tuten. “There are so many who contribute to the growth and beatification of downtown Marietta, and their names circulate because people see the impact they have, whether they’re on our board or a Main Street member or not.”

Nathan Matheny, 23, of Waterford, was happy to see his business nominated for the building improvement award as he carries on his grandparents’ and parents’ legacy at The Town House.

Matheny purchased the sports bar and restaurant from his mother a year and a half ago and added outdoor seating, corn hole boards and an outdoor kitchen.

His eyes are next set on music out on the new patio,

“We’ve had fundraisers out there for the Boys and Girls Club, and that can grow,” he said as he went through payroll Monday. “I’d like to add something new here every year whether it’s big or little.”

He said the success of the business has been in retaining long-time employees who make the business moves of adding seating and offerings easier to manage.

Others nominated included Parks and Cemetery Foreman Tanner Huffman with the city administration.

“That kid, anytime we need anything from the city, Tanner is our go-to guy,” said Glover. “Whether it’s space in the armory, a truck we need help getting unloaded –we make a phone call, and next thing we know there are forklifts ready to go.”

Tuten explained that the collaboration award was also one which brought in nominations for other nonprofits and events in Marietta that have made an impact.

“It’s who the community feels is making that difference,” he said, noting the efforts of Debbie Cline with Hometown Holidays, Charlie Clay with Cash Mob Mondays, and both Jackson Patterson and Councilman Geoff Schenkel with Main Street West and MOV Rebound for Kids. “But it’s also those lesser known neighborly acts, like for example Bill Mannix and Andrew Lisk, they’ve made an impact shoveling snow and just always being there for their neighbors. Andrew doesn’t even have a storefront downtown, but you see him volunteering.”

Tuten said tickets are still available for the celebration which will take place at the Adelphia at 5:30 p.m. Thursday.

“WesBanco is sponsoring the music from Back Porch Alibi, and there will be a cash bar and appetizers,” he said. “People can go to to get tickets at the top of the main page.”

2019 Nominees

Building Improvement Award:

• American Flags & Poles.

• IncSwell / Ketter Block Building.

• The Town House.

Outstanding Collaboration Award:

• Hometown Holidays.

• Cash Mob Mondays.

• MOV Rebound for Kids.

• Main Street West.

• The Epicenter / Makerspace.

Overachiever of the Year Award:

• Debbie Cline.

• Denyse Fordham.

• Jackson Patterson.

• Tanner Huffman.

• Tim Glover.

Best Neighbor Award:

• Andrew Lisk (Lisk Lawn Care).

• Bill Mannix (Merrill Lynch).

• Caroline Waller (Passiflora Studio).

• Jennifer Sturgill (Green Acres of Marietta).

• Karen Henthorn (Jeremiah’s Coffee House).

Community Builder Award:

• Charlie Clay.

• Geoff Schenkel.

• Heather Allender.

• Tyson Whistler.

Source: Marietta Main Street.