Open doors

Springs bring museum, ice cream and more openings

JANELLE PATTERSON The Marietta Times Dan Hedges familiarizes himself with the dangerous risks taken by river travelers in the Ohio River Museum in Marietta, which opened its doors for the season Monday.

Though spring sprung with freezing temperatures, several local seasonal businesses and nonprofits have opened their doors to welcome the sun.

Andrew Lisk, 22, owner of Lisk Lawn Care, is gearing up for mowing to begin next week, The Castle and Ohio River Museum opened their doors for the season Monday, as did Huck’s Farm Market. Ice cream spots and outdoor seating areas at local restaurants are also opening back up.

“We’ve been out the past two weeks doing cleanups and getting mulch ready for that maintenance,” said Lisk. “But mowing is the base of my company, about 80 percent of what I do and that will start next week and the week after with small to mid-sized accounts.”

Huck’s Farm Market opened for the season Monday with sweet treats and Amish meats on hand, plus seedlings for those with a green thumb who want to get a jump start on their gardening.

Witten’s Farm Market took to Facebook Monday with young members of the family showing off flower buds and making predictions for late May to begin strawberry picking season.

Meanwhile, museums in Marietta are also ramping up their programming and signups have already begun for summer camps in many locations.

The Castle, in addition to daily tours of the historic home in Marietta which began again Monday, will host not only the third annual tea for children called Princess Ivy’s Adventure on April 13, but is also partnering again with The Cook’s Shop at the First Congregational Church for another installment of Food History programming.

“We’ve started off today with this year’s focus on our 25th anniversary,” said Education Director Kyle Yoho. “And spring into summer we also have so much programming coming. The Food History dinner we’re changing up this time to host a four-course meal highlighting the progressions in dinner styles from early colonial to late Victorian.”

Yoho said The Castle’s archeologist, Wes Clarke, will be speaking at the dinner about how each of the four periods highlighted by food built upon the previous style.

“We’ll be starting with our first meal in the more communal style of passing around the table up to the more refined presentation of the Victorian era,” he described. “Then in May, we’ll have our annual herb day luncheon–this year featuring Anise Hyssop–with our speaker we just confirmed today, Joyce Ditchendorf.”

Late spring, he said, will also see The Castle leading two weekends of the Historic Marietta Tour of Homes (May 25-26 and June 1-2) and the annual garden party fundraiser celebrating 25 years as a museum on June 13.

“And our spots for registration of our summer camps are open on our website,” Yoho said. “Those are filling up already for our history and archeology camp and archaeology field school.”

Retired history teacher Dan Hedges was clearing dust bunnies at the Ohio River Museum Monday as it too reopened its doors after being closed from September to March.

“It’s my first day, too,” Hedges smiled. “But I taught history at Warren, primarily pioneer history so this is really up my alley.”

Hedges walked through the museum Monday to refamiliarize himself with the stories associated with different models of riverboats and sternwheelers throughout the building after straightening up new souvenirs in the gift shop at the front door.

“What’s neat here is it isn’t a push-button museum, but there’s so much to catch your eye and draw you in,” he said.

The Yellow Jacket in Williamstown has also reopened for its first full season (they opened in June last year) with new monstrous milkshakes on the menu with names like the Lilo, peanut butter delight, chocolate dreams and ‘Who’s peeping at you.’

Its hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sundays noon to 6 p.m.

The Jug in Newport has also reopened along the Ohio River and Ohio 7.

Whit’s Frozen Custard in Marietta extended its hours back out into the week from the Thursday-through-Sunday shortened hours in March.

Marietta Safety-Service Director Jonathan Hupp confirmed Monday that the Marietta Harbor and daily docking is still on tap for a Memorial Day opening behind the Armory as well–though staffing with the changeover from WASCO Inc. management is still in the process.

“WASCO is working with the city in this transition before opening so we will have everything ready for both the seasonal and daily rentals and the concessions,” he said. “We’re working on aligning staffing now.”

WASCO Inc. is a private nonprofit that provides adults with disabilities services for job training and social integration. For the last 20 years, the nonprofit leased the harbor and kept 100 percent of the profits of seasonal and transient dock space rentals and sale profits from the shop in exchange for completing city bathroom cleaning services.

Between 16 and 17 clients of WASCO were employed each summer at the harbor, but in the winter bidding for the next contract to run the concession and dock rentals neither WASCO nor any other private entity put in a bid to the city to operate the services, as reported to Marietta City Council in early March.

Spring cleaning:

• Consignment formal and semi-formal dresses accepted at Threadz on Front Street.

• Donations accepted at:

• Goodwill on Colegate Drive, Marietta.

• The Trading Post on Pike Street, Marietta.

• Salvation Army Clothing Closet on Front Street, Marietta.

• Betsey’s Closet at the Betsey Mills Club on Fourth Street, Marietta.

• L.A.M.B. (Lowell Area Mission Basket) Food Pantry and Thrift Shop on Walnut Street, Lowell.

• Belpre Area Ministries, on Washington Boulevard, Belpre.

• Zonta Unique Boutique at the Marietta Township Community Center in Reno, Friday and Saturday sale preceded by donations through Thursday at Advantage Real Estate and Real Living McCarthy Real Estate, 6 to 8 p.m. this week.

Source: Times research.


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