RE: Blaine Bridge Community
CONTACT: Sue Douglass
Date: July 11, 2007
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The Blaine Bridge Community Preservation
Project announces a turn in a new and exciting direction. While the group is
continuing to meet and stay active, it has recently dissolved its formal
status. The project will no
longer be a corporation , or hold 501c3 status. The name of the group will
remain the same, its mission may expand, and its vitality will keep growing,
as an informal organization.
“ We are alive and well”, states Sue Douglass, founder and chief officer. “It
is simply no longer necessary or expedient for us hold to corporate standards
and 501c3 filings. The 1828 Blaine Bridge has been successfully rescued. We
are happy and pleased to have been a key element in that endeavor. However,
the site is now in good hands. We will continue to be available to those who
want to keep the national treasure prominent.”
Though the project will drop the “ inc.” after its title, it remains true to
its original mandate to be educational and informational. One of the first
steps in doing that was the group’s gift of $2000 to the students in the
Bridgeport School system for use in an educational activity trust fund,
allowing for field trips to and activities at the Blaine location. Members
will be available to the school as resources and guidance in the school’s use
of the 1828 Blaine Bridge and its site.
Additionally, the members hope to build a collection of local history stories,
project scrapbooks, photo collections, and participate in tourism efforts. The
www.blainebridge.org will operate as long as it can be funded.
Peg Baker remains as chair of the outstanding refreshment committee. While no
longer needing elected officers, former officers , treasurer John Skoberne
and secretary Tamara Shepherd, will continue to participate in leadership
roles. Sandy Henning Butch , first president , and Greg Zelenitz, past
president, are also involved, as are committee leaders Larry Misencik, Gerry
and Ron Zambori, and Vi Hanson, church liaison. Ed Slavik, Sr. has served as
trustee, along with Jim Kacsmar and Judge Frank Fregiato. Kacsmar was also the
accountant , and Fregiato handled the legal concerns, voluntarily providing
essential professional support.
“Our connections to many people, as well as to our membership, have remained
strong…and consistent. We are deeply grateful to all those who have provided
services, help, and general support. We do have our “family” of regulars,
and that is our heartbeat. That’s why we will stay together. We’d miss
visiting each other each month, and now we can embrace the full social aspects
without the stresses of formal restrictions”, Douglass continued.
The group will continue to meet on the second Wednesday of each month, except
December, in the Pleasant Valley Presbyterian Church , located on the Historic
National Road in Blaine, Ohio. Meetings begin at 7 PM and the public is
invited and encouraged to attend.
There are other parties interested in the 1828 Blaine Bridge who are meeting
separately and informally about the site. As of now, there is no name to this
new group, nor is it connected to the Blaine Bridge Community Preservation
When Douglass began the organization in 2001, it was best to become fully
formal due to the uncertainty of how the project would develop and how major
funding would be secured. Those legal definitions came with specific
conditions and responsibilities which are no longer necessary. When funding
materialized outside of the group’s jurisdiction and mandate, the saving of
the structure went to capable and competent officials who directed the work
and the finances. That combination of
local and state agencies remains in charge
of the structure and the site.
“ From the start, we were prepared for all eventualities. But we
never had to handle the huge sums of money, or deal with large contracts, etc.
for the actual restoration. Our funds did go to information and education,
keeping the group afloat, and anything we could do to keep the fires of
interest burning. With the 1828 Bridge so beautifully saved, we can breathe
and enjoy it now…and keep the legacy going and growing”, Douglass added.