Sports Field Ideas; Family Matters; and the Carnival

Editor’s note: Reporters are constantly surveying their surroundings, and in doing so often turn up many tidbits of news that don’t make it into the daily newspaper.

This space serves as a spot to aggregate and publish those items that otherwise would stay locked away forever in the reporters’ notebook.

Utilize New Field Wisely

Ideas for the $3.3 million East Wheeling sports field that make sense:

  • Ask that all Ohio County middle school football teams play at least one home game there each season, and possibly seek to have the field serve as host, on a rotating basis, the PAC-8 football championships, currently played each fall at Monarch Stadium in Moundsville.
  • Ask FC United, which is the Wheeling area’s travel soccer organization, to schedule at least one home game for each age division there each fall and spring season.
  • During two-a-day practices in early August, ask the area high schools – Wheeling Park, Wheeling Central and The Linsly School – to hold at least one practice each week at the field.
  • Invite the Wheeling Little Patriots and any other youth football league – the Wheeling YMCA flag football teams included – to play their home games at the field, with a championship game at Wheeling Island Stadium.
  • Ask Wheeling Park’s lacrosse squad to utilize the field for its home games.

Family Trumps Politics

Ohio County Republican Executive Committee member Susan Oglinsky Cookman has requested a leave of absence from her duties to serve as campaign manager for her father-in-law, state Sen. Donald Cookman, who is a Democrat.

Cookman, D-Hampshire, faces opposition from Republican Charles Trump IV of Berkeley Springs in November’s general election, putting his daughter-in-law in a tricky situation.

“In the best tradition of Republican and conservative values, I find that until the general election of 2014 is concluded I must put my family first and request a leave of absence from the Ohio County Republican Executive Committee until December 2014,” Cookman wrote in a letter to state Republican Party Chairman Conrad Lucas.

Carnival Coming to Town

Those wondering when the carnival will arrive in their area can rest assured it is coming, but later than usual this year. Bates Brothers Amusement Co. a springtime tradition for many residents in the Ohio Valley, will be touring the area in late summer or early autumn, according to company representatives. Past local stops for the traveling carnival have included St. Clairsville, Ashland, Wintersville, Weirton and Sugar Creek.

Top of The Speech World

Eight members of the Wheeling Park High School state champion speech team traveled to Chicago recently for the National Catholic Forensics League Speech and Debate Tournament, along with coaches Bill Cornforth, Josh Fromhart, Kayla Nelson and Lori Mathieu.

Attendees were Beverly Banks and Devyn Nickerson (public forum); Riley Bresnahan (Lincoln-Douglas); Jesse William and Willie McCleery (duo interpretation); Lizzie Kaniecki (original oratory); Aimee Schultz (original interpretation); and Austin Gage (dramatic performance). Brandon Moore was a quarter-finalist in the declamation competition. Blake Humphrey was a finalist in the student congress debate contest. Humphrey finished in the Top 24 of 220 students.

Give Me Some Shelter

Moundsville will soon get a new shelter along the riverfront area, thanks to an $18,000 donation from Williams Energy. During a recent Moundsville council meeting, members voted to award a contract to Savage Construction of Wheeling to build the shelter for $22,903. The city will cover the rest of the costs.

Seeking a Smarter Grid

Appalachian Power, a subsidiary of American Electric Power, is hoping to make area residents “grid smart” through an energy efficiency program that provides a complete energy assessment of the home.

Such programs are gaining in popularity throughout the nation, as the cost to produce electricity has been rising and will continue to rise for the next few decades.

The program, free for those who participate, sends an energy specialist to your home to perform the following tests and upgrades:

  • replace up to six traditional light bulbs with CFL bulbs, and install LED night lights
  • install energy-saving faucet aerators and shower heads
  • adjust water heater and A/C thermostat
  • wrap sections of hot water pipe to prevent heat loss
  • install refrigerator/freezer thermometers.

Other services also are available. For more information or to sign up, call 888-446-7719 or visit

A Matter of Jurisdiction

In the “only in Wheeling” category, a traffic accident Thursday in Elm Grove presented an interesting scenario for first responders. A vehicle went off the road along Mar-Win Drive just past the Elm Terrace Shopping Center. The vehicle landed in the front yard of a home at 1 Sherwood Ave., which is within the city limits. Wheeling firefighters from nearby Station 11 responded to aid the driver of the crashed vehicle. Wheeling Police officers also were sent to the scene. However, once on scene, Wheeling police notified dispatch that the accident occurred on a road governed by the county, thus the Ohio County Sheriff’s Department was called to the scene to make the accident report. It left some bystanders scratching their heads because there were so many emergency vehicles on the scene for the single-car crash.

Time For a New Roof

The City of Cameron will see improvements to its city building after recently receiving a $7,000 grant from the West Virginia Development Office. City officials plan to get a rubber roof to address several leaks in the building.