CENTERBURG — As motorists drive through the village of Centerburg, they will see some improvements to the landscape. The Centerburg Area Business Association has been working closely with Mayor George Shaw and Village Administrator Philip Lohmeyer on the design and layout of the project, as well as the building of the decorative retaining wall.
The new look, said Lohmeyer, will help spruce up the area and make things look nicer.
“Then they are going to replace the wooden sign, that has been painted throughout the years, with one of the vinyl signs that doesn’t fade or need repainting,” said Lohmeyer. “Different groups have done these types of things before, and it’s nice to have them do it.”
In the past, other organizations such as The Heart of Ohio Women’s Club donated lights for the gazebo and did landscaping in the park area of downtown.
“So it has been an ongoing thing with the women’s club and the business association, and the Oldtime Farming Festival. They’ve all, throughout years, pitched in to help make the little park area and downtown look a little nicer,” said Lohmeyer.
Last year the Centerburg Area Business Association’s project was new lights; this year, members wanted to continue to improve the park area of downtown.
Each year the business association hosts a car show in the spring and a golf outing in the fall to raise funds for community projects.
“We’ve gotten to a point as a group where we have some [funds] that we can try and do projects like this,” said Dale Pennington, president of the association.
Pennington hopes that with the changes being made, the community will venture into downtown more often.
“We take pride in our community and we feel that if we show people that we are doing positive things, it might gain us more members. And maybe other people in the community will see what we are doing and frequent town more,” he said.
Made of sierra stone, the wall is about 2 feet tall and is located on the corner of Ohio 3 and North Clayton Street, in front of the village sign. Included in the project is a new “Heart of Ohio” sign that will be similar in design to the one in front of the library, but will be much bigger.
“The sign that is there now is getting replaced. ... And it should be installed by the 6th of August,” said Pennington. “Then, depending on our budget, or how this turns out, we are going to finish up that area with some small plants.”
The new sign will be about 5 feet tall and 7 feet wide, and will still have Centerburg’s emblem: “Welcome to Centerburg: The Heart of Ohio, since 1830” written on it.
“I would like for people to see that this is a friendly town and inviting,” said Pennington. “Obviously we want to attract businesses, and unless there are some improvements done in the community, we’re not going to see it.”
Pennington said by the business association taking an initiative to make improvements in the community, the community will grow.
“We are trying to modernize a little at a time and make things look a little nicer and try to help maintain [what gets done],” he said. “All of the businesses here are trying to make a living, but we also live in this community and we want to see it grow; and it will benefit everybody if it grows.”