Around Windham: Holiday events coming up in Windham, plus giving thanks for some wonderful neighbors

The third annual Windham/James A. Garfield Marathon Veterans Day half marathon was held on Nov. 12. The races started and ended at the Windham High School, which is next to Camp James A. Garfield (formerly Ravenna Arsenal).

They included both a 5K race and a half marathon, with about 200 racers participating. The races benefit the Windham Schools food pantry and Veterans Haven, a transitional housing program for homeless veterans in Portage County. It provides services to homeless veterans on a 24/7 basis.

Windham students and staff volunteered at the water stations and helped serve lunch. The lunch and awards were presented at the high school cafeteria following the race. There were an amazing number of categories and the winners received cash prizes.

The races were coordinated by representatives from Camp James A. Garfield, Windham High School Student Council, and Race Coordinator Staff Sg. William Collins. The course is reported to be lovely as it is over scenic areas in a former World War II munitions plant, which is now a regional joint military training site. Some of it was formerly a big part of Windham.

Last month, Larry Oliver tripped and fell in front of the Rite Aid Store in Garrettsville. He would like to thank the young lady from Rite Aid, the police and the ambulance crew for their kind assistance.

Everyone is invited to a Community Thanksgiving Service at the Windham United Methodist Church, 9051 N. Main St. It will be held at 7 p.m. Nov. 22, which is Thanksgiving Eve. Several local churches are participating in the service. Everyone is invited. This a great opportunity to get together as a community. Thank you to Rev. Sandra Greenberg for organizing the return of this service.

Santa Sighting 2023 (a drive-through version of their old breakfast with Santa) will be held from 9 to 11 a.m. Dec. 2 and as stated will be a drive-through experience at Windham United Methodist Church, same address as above.

Participants will enter through the driveway on the north side of the church and exit on the south side of the church. They will be greeted with costumed volunteers and will be provided breakfast bags at one stop, and gift items at another stop and will have the opportunity for prayer over the family vehicle at the last stop. The church welcomes parents and children from the Windham community.

There will be another free lunch on Dec. 9, hosted by the Congregational Church United Church of Christ. As usual it will be drive-thru pick up at the Brick Chapel, 9003 N. Main St., in Windham.

Kim Kiser said they will be serving honey baked ham, cheesy potatoes, whipped sweet potatoes, green beans, applesauce and homemade desserts. Meals will be served from noon to 1 p.m.

The Congregational Church serves these meals on the second Saturday of each month. There were 318 meals were served at the November meal, which was a yummy turkey dinner. The church greatly appreciates the volunteers who prepare and serve the meals and those who donate to the dinner to help make it possible.

“Blue Christmas,” a peaceful Christmas service for those experiencing personal loss, will be held at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 15 at Windham United Methodist Church. This service is open to everyone in the area who have lost loved ones or who are experiencing loss in other areas that are impacting their lives.

A Personal Care Pantry is open 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Wednesday using the back door of the Methodist Church, first-time users must bring identification for all adults and children.

The church would appreciate donations of full-size items of shampoo, conditioner, body wash, feminine hygiene products, razors, shaving cream, toothpaste, dish washing liquid, laundry detergent, 4- or 6-pack bathroom tissue.

The “God Provides” meal served by the Methodist Church will not be served in November or December. The meals will resume in January.

A group of Windham Junior and Senior High School students were treated to a field trip to the Great Lakes Science Center in Cleveland a few weeks ago for their good behavior.

Sounds like a great reward.

I rarely mention sports in my column as there are others that can do a better job at it than I can.

However, the recognition of Angela Lambert Barlett by Portage Sports recently as a Sports Volunteer of the Year is worth it. She was recognized for the many, many years she has served as an excellent ticket-taker at both our football and basketball games. I have heard she did this for at least 15 years. Anytime someone serves as a volunteer for our schools or community this long it is worth mentioning and giving our thanks to.

While I am giving thanks, thanks to all those who organized, worked at, or attended the benefit for Cairo Svonavec. It was a huge success! Thanks also for all who have been praying for her. Fourteen-year-old Cairo is fighting a very aggressive cancer. Her parents are Joe Svonavec and Jayme Mitchell Svonavec.

Not sure if Meridith Hoover actually lives in Windham Township or not, but her farm Quacky Acres is close by, and she has friends in the township. She is an interesting person and is one of a group of hunters that use my woods for hunting.

She just returned from the 150th Ohio National Poultry Show. She raises some very interesting poultry. I am using her as an example of interesting stories I would like to write about here.

If you are doing something interesting or unusual, please share it with us. If you or a group are planning an event, please share that too! I need your help! Please send information of interest and information about coming events to me by calling me at 330-259-5596.

Ann Taft
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