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Kelleys Island Landowners Association


If you have any articles or pictures you would like included in the newsletter, please contact Diane Brookins with any questions.   To download a copy the Newsletters, click on the following links:

2015 June Newsletter
2015 Winter Newsletter

2014 April Newsletter

2013 Spring Newsletter

2012 Winter Newsletter
2012 November Newsletter

KILA Newsletter
June 2015
Editor:  Diane Brookins


Our Objectives: The objectives of the Kelleys Island Landowners Association are to preserve the tranquility and beauty of this island by remaining constantly alert and vigilant to any situation that could adversely affect the needs of our members and the island itself. We provide a forum where members can have the opportunity to present ideas, problems, and information; and we bring all available information regarding Kelleys Island to the Village Council and our members.


Dear KILA,

It has been over a month since we have been back and I already have 110 nautical miles on my sailboat.  So far my favorite day on KI was May 31 – the day the ferries stopped running and we were stuck on the Rock. It felt like an impromptu festival downtown, everyone enjoying their “snow day”.  

Barb and I just said goodbye to our 10 guests for the Run the Rock weekend.  For 4 of the 10, this was their first trip to KI.  We had great fun showing them all this Island has to offer.  The businesses were in full swing, and the nature side of the island seemed to be showing off.  It is my opinion that KI is very unique, not duplicated anywhere in the world.  It is just a fun and friendly place to sit back and enjoy.  

Your KILA board and I have been busy planning 2015.  Our first event is June 13 – our annual Pot Luck.  6 PM at Uncle Dik’s Pavilion (if not raining) or the Village Park Pavilion (if it is raining). Wally Christy, Janet Killam, and Vicki Finnigan have a great evening planned.  Please try to attend.  We will have a great game to play - It’s a hoot!  Beverages, burgers, and dogs will be provided.  Please bring a dish to pass.  

Homecoming is August 15 this year.  Islanders are already stopping me to say that they will volunteer.  What a great community event.  I hope you are able to help out. 

Make sure you pay your $10 dues.  You can pay on-line at  Or you can fill out the form at the bottom of this newsletter and send  $10 to KILA 

PO Box 22, KI, OHIO 43438.  It is your dues that fund our great events – the June Pot Luck, August Homecoming, and October’s Family Hayride. 


Jim Zeller

KILA Board Meetings are scheduled for the following dates:  

- June 20

- July 18

- August 8

- September 26 – Annual Meeting and September Board Meeting

- October 17

Mark your calendars for these other fun KI events!    

June 12-14  Bacon Fest - Kelleys Island Wine Co.

June 13 Welcome Pot Luck- Kelleys Island Landowners Association  

June 21 Make-a-Wish Horseshoe Tournament — Kelleys Island Wine Co. 

June 27 Music Fest - All Day - Great Lakes Brewing Co. & Heidelberg Distributing Co. 


6-10 Kids Stage 

July 12   Kelleys Island Triathlon & Family Races - Kelleys Island Chamber of Commerce

July 17-19 ISLANDFEST-Kelleys Island Chamber of Commerce

July 20-24 Kids Stage-  St Michaels Parish Hall  

July 24-26 Kelleys Island Film Festival

Aug 1     Make-A-Wish Golf Poker run - Dockers Restaurant

Aug 1     Art Show - K.I. Historical Association

Aug 2     Make-A-Wish Swim - Portside Marina

Aug 3-4 Kelly Miller Circus - Kelleys Island Chamber of Commerce 

Aug 3-7 Kids Stage 

Aug 7     Justin Horseshoe Tournament - Kelleys Island Wine Co.

Aug 15   Homecoming - K.I. Landowners Association       

Aug 29   Poker Run/ Dice Roll - Bag the Moon Restaurant    


Sept 11 Murder Mystery Weekend - Kelleys Island Venture Resort

Sept 12   Treasure Island Day - Kelleys Island Chamber of Commerce

Sept 12 Butterfly Festival -  Kelleys Island Audubon Club

Sept 19 Pig Roast - West Bay Restaurant

Sept 19 WineFest -   Kelleys Island Wine Co.

Sept 20 Dahlia Tour - Kelleys Island Audubon Club

Sept 26 Lobsterfest - The Village Pump

Sept 26 Harvest Festival - Community Event

Sept 26 Feathers & Foliage - Kelleys Island Audubon Club

Sept 27 Putt - Putt Pig Roast - Caddy Shack


3-4 Oktoberfest - Kelleys Island Brewery

Oct  10 Chili Cookoff - Kelleys Island Brewery

Oct  10 Wine & Art Festival - Kelleys Island Wine Co.

Oct  17 Zombie Bar Crawl - Kelleys Island Chamber of Commerce

Oct  24 Childrens'sChildren’s Pumpkin Carving - Bag the Moon

Oct  24 Pre-Thanksgiving Dinner - Bag the Moon

Oct  24 Hayride at 4-H Camp - Kelleys Island Landowners Association

Oct 24 Adult Halloween - All Island


Nov  6-8 Owl Festival - Kelleys Island Audubon Club

Nov  8 Police Chase Half Marathon - K.I. Venture Resort & Captain's Corner

Nov  27 Christmas At The Corner - Captain's Corner

Nov  27 Thanksgiving Potluck - The Village Pump

Nov  28 OSU/Michigan Tailgate Party - The Village Pump

Check out the HISTORICAL ASSOCIATION’s new website ( ).  Here you can find historical tidbits as well as events, meeting dates and a host of other island information.  There’s an intriguing section called Mystery, where they show some really neat old pics that YOU can help identify.  Just e-mail them at if you can help! 

There are still spots available for the Historical Association’s August 1st ART SHOW from 10am-4pm.  Spots are free, but you must pre-register using the form located on the Historical Association’s website (above) and clicking on Events & Meetings.

Mark your calendars for September 12th, when the Historical Association will be hosting the ISLAND-WIDE YARD SALE a.k.a. Island Treasure Day!  Also on that day at 11:00 will be the BUTTERFLY FESTIVAL with butterfly tagging and presentation.

Things to Note

COUNCIL began meeting on Thursday nights at 7:00 on May 14.  FREE RADON KITS are available from Erie County, just call and they will send you one. 

The Village appointed Shawn Craig as the new POLICE CHIEF and bid farewell to Ron Ehrbar, who retired April 8th.  Ron was presented with a plaque in a touching ceremony.  The Mayor reappointed members to the various committees and selected Ron Ehrbar to serve on the Board of Zoning Appeals.


The EMS squad has received the much-needed lift cart.  They’ve been raising money for the matching portion of the grant and they have finished their pediatric trauma class.  Over the last two years, KILA has donated about $2500 towards this device.

The POST OFFICE sadly bid farewell to postmaster Jean, and said hello to Chrissy Maust, the new postmaster.   The post office is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. and again from 1-3 p.m.  On Saturday the the hours are 8 a.m. to Noon.  The big news this year is that the mail boxes are open 24/7, thanks to a beefing up of security and CCTV cameras. 

PUT IN BAY URGENT CARE CLINIC is now open!  Those in need, can visit the Mercy Health Put-in-BayPut-In-Bay Medical Center where staff will see patients from Noon-4 a.m. Friday-Saturday; and Noon-Midnight on Sunday. ...Let’s say your grand daughter develops an ear infection on Saturday morning – hop on the Jet Express to Put In Bay, walk up Catawba Avenue to the EMS building, have the doctor look at her ear and prescribe some antibiotics, and walk back to the Jet in time to catch the return boat to KI.  You can have the prescription filled at Bassetts and they will put it on the KI Ferry Boat.  The Clinic has a mobile X-Ray machine, and they can stitch up wounds and put on casts! 

Jeni Hammond is organizing the CHAMBER office and has loads of new ideas. Stop in and say hello!  The raffle this year will be for a brand new golf cart.  The K.I. History Museum opened on May 16 for International Museum Day with free admission.  SPRING CLEANING? Remember, if it is too good to throw out, donate it to the museum for its yard sale. 

The CHAMBER updated their website and it now contains nice links with details on every activity on the island.  

Kathy Rickenbacher Kin and her cousin Alison Nowak McCarthy started a KELLEYS ISLAND FACEBOOK PAGE specifically to share photos of people form the island’s past. They hope you’ll join them there! Search for Kelleys Island Faces from the Past and ask to join. They have lots of old pictures with no names, and besides enjoying looking at pictures, they are hoping they can identify some of them too. Be sure to share your own faces from Kelleys Island’s past!


New Island Eateries

KI CANTINA MEXICAN BAR AND RESTAURANT.  The Kelley's Island Wine Co. is proud to introduce their newest addition to the property, K.I. Cantina!  A bar specializing in house-made margaritas.  It’s received some good informal reviews thus far!  Check it out on Woodford Road next to the Winery.

Sweet Valley Trading Post on 604 Division Street (aka the old Butterfly House) is now the SWEET VALLEY PITTE STOP.  It will have an open-air CAFE/BISTRO, offering a cosmopolitan menu of soups, sandwiches, salads, and a juice bar.  They will maintain a large retail floor, as well as BIKE RENTALS for all ages. 




New York businessman Bill Pomeroy’s search for his roots led him to Sandusky, Ohio. That’s why his William G. Pomeroy Foundation has just awarded grants for five historical markers in the Sandusky area, including one in downtown Sandusky, Pomeroy explained in a telephone interview Monday.

The foundation is paying $2,440 apiece for the markers, located in Sandusky, Bellevue, KELLEYS ISLAND and Seneca County.

Pomeroy got started in the historical marker business because the historical markers in Pompey, N.Y., were getting old and were in poor shape.  Bill took on a project to refurbish all of the historical markers in Pompey” said Paula Miller, executive director of the foundation.  Pomeroy said he had so much fun with that project, he decided to do some new markers in New York. “Most of the people we talk to are small-town historians,” he said. “We can bring some of the budget to bear and make it happen”

Historical markers help history tourism, he notes. “A lot of people are interested in history” he said.  Another passion, genealogy and family history, led him to the Sandusky area. He has ancestors who lived in Sandusky. “My grandfather was born in Sandusky in the 1880s,” said Pomeroy, who in 2006 paid to have a large monument in the shape of an anvil, the Pomeroy family symbol, erected in Oakland Cemetery in Perkins Township.

The historical marker in Sandusky will record the history of the former Erie County Jail, now part of Sandusky Library.  The sheriff and his family used to live at the jail, according to the library’s Sandusky history blog.

Pomeroy’s Historical Markers Grants Program is open to organizations in Erie, Seneca and Huron counties. Organizations in those counties seeking information about upcoming grant rules and deadlines may contact Andy Verhoff at the Ohio History Connection.  Grant applicants apply via Verhoff’s office. The applications are then sent to the Pomeroy Foundation for final review.


Below are new Historical Markers Sites funded by the William G. Pomeroy Foundation. The organization receiving the grant is listed, along with the subject of the marker:

   1. Sandusky Library, Sandusky Library and Erie County Jail

   2. The Bellevue Historical Society, The Tremont House

   3. Kelleys Island Historical Association, German Reform Church and church parsonage

   4. Seneca County HistorialHistorical Society, founding of Tiffin.

   5. Seneca County Historical Society, Rezin W. Shawhan (successful Tiffin businessman)



Spreading their wings

Move to Port Clinton helps business




It looked as if Griffing’s wings were going to get clipped a few years ago.    But the local flying service weathered the hardships and grew back to full strength at the Erie-Ottawa International Airport. “There is a lot more activity at this airport,” Griffing Flying Service owner Tom Griffing said. “This is quite a fun place to be with the museum and restored planes nearby”.

Griffing Flying Service, which was originally located on Cleveland Road in Sandusky, moved to Port Clinton last year, after years of effort to sustain the business across the bay. “There has definitely been an uptick in business since they moved in here,” airport director Stan Gebhardt said. “We can attribute that to there being a place for plane repairs and fuel sales”.

Griffing Flying Service now shares the runway at the Erie-Ottawa International Airport and still makes flights to the Lake Erie Islands. "We do a little bit of everything," Griffing said. "We've been in the business since 1937 when my mother and father started everything. The partnership with the airport manager is great. He is very pro-growth and he gets the complete backing of the airport authority."  

The flying service offers a whole set of repairs and inspections for planes at their new Port Clinton location. “We usually do two types of plane inspections,” aircraft inspector John Ontko said. “We definitely have a bigger, better facility to do our jobs since we moved here.” Ontko said there is almost always a plane in their shop to get inspected because of strict safety regulations.  

But plane inspection and repairs isn’t the only service offered at the airport.  In fact, they also deliver mail to the Lake Erie Islands. “It’s just a good way of us giving back to the community,” pilot Josh McGinnis said after landing on South Bass Island to deliver mail.  Griffing Flying Service delivers mail six days per week and about 300 days per year, depending on the weather.  They have a contract with the United States Postal Service. “We’ve had the contract and we’ve delivered mail for more than 20 years” Griffing said. “But I don’t know how far back our predecessor, Island Airlines, did it.”    Griffing is about halfway through a four-year contract to deliver mail. “It’s a good contract, but it takes a lot of work and people to do it,” Griffing said.

A pilot usually leaves at about 8:30 a.m. to deliver mail to Kelleys, South, Middle and North Bass islands.    “It’s a pleasure for us to do it,” Griffing said. “It’s helpful to people, and we do a very good job of delivering it on time”


LESLIE KORENKO has just finished book 5 in THE KELLEYS ISLAND HISTORY SERIES and it is now AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE!  Here’s a brief description of some of the highlights of this edition.  Leslie reminds everyone that you can look over the contents of this, and the other 4 books, at



Kelleys Island 1877-1884 – The fire, the Great Grooves, & a mysterious disappearance  This is book 5 in the series. The island’s golden age is interrupted as unforeseen events affect the Island economy. The Island House Hotel, a 102 room hotel built just years earlier, caught fire and burned to the ground. Jacob Rush was only able to save some of the furniture, leaving him deeply in debt and the Island crippled by lack of hotel rooms. This gives birth to the small hotel and cottage business. The first of the Great Grooves are uncovered. Unfortunately, they are quarried out a short time later, but not before photographers capture their magnificence. Elizabeth Selfe disappeared one night, leaving her children and the entire Island consumed with fears that she was abducted and murdered. The community dragged Lake Erie waters and demanded an investigation by county authorities. In financial news, Charles Farciot, who had been the superintendent of the Kelley’s Island Wine Co. for 20 years, left the island to partner with Andrew Wherle Jr. in a new enterprise. Unfortunately, Farciot then absconded with over $100,000 of the firm’s money, driving Wherle into bankruptcy. Financial problems force the Kelley’s Island Lime Co., the owner of the island’s largest stone quarry, and several landowners into bankruptcy. There were some lighthearted moments too, such as a treasure hunt for gold from the War of 1812, a puzzle that confounds, and the Island’s first telephone appears at the store. Glass ball shooting competitions capture the attention of Island men and a woman sues her father-in-law for alienating the affections of her husband after her husband sues for divorce.

KILA has created a website for you to keep up on island news:  The website has links to all the island news, including village council minutes and weather and the Chamber.  The Chamber’s great event calendar can also be found at  Read Kelleys Life online at  For other information like where to stay when you’re on the island, where to shop and where to dine, visit:  Look into your home’s tax information and transaction details at  These sites are all linked to KILA’s website!   Make sure to add it to your “favorites”.

KILA Dues 

The KILA Board needs revenue to carry out activities from year to year. We respectfully request an annual $10 dues amount to be submitted to KILA so that you remain in our Active Membership circle.  Dues can be paid via PayPal at Payment should be made prior to June 30 of each year.  This link can also be used to make your $25 Initiation Fee payment and $10 Crimewatch donation.

KILA Board Members - These are the people who represent you on the KILA Board

Drew Algase; Barb Coleman; Frank Dodson; Emil Hach; Holly Miller; Jennifer Pieratt; Jim Zeller; Jan Killam; Vickie Finnegan; Wally Christy; and Bob Howley.


KILA Officers

Jim Zeller - President

Drew Algase – Vice President

Emil Hach - Treasurer

Jennifer Pieratt – Secretary

Diane Brookins – Editor 

Contact KILA

Have questions, need information? Contact us at KILA, P O Box 22, Kelleys Island, OH 43438 or and click on CONTACT US in the upper right.


KILA has an account at GFS (Gordon Food Service).  Mention the account at check-out to receive a nominal discount.  To use the account, just tell them: Kelleys Island Landowners Association, or use our account number: 002279911.



JOYCE M. ERNE, 87, residing in Huron and formerly of Kelleys Island and Sandusky, passed away Jan. 3, 2015, in The Meadows at Osborn Park.  Those wishing to contribute to Joyce’s memory may do so to The Meadows at Osborn Park, 3916 Perkins Ave. Huron, OH 44839.  Condolences may be shared at  .

ALBERT J. ‘AJ’ FRESCH, 29, of Sandusky, died unexpectedly on Jan. 18, 2015 at his his home.  The family suggests memorial contributions be made in AJ’s memory to Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic Church, 510 Columbus Ave., Sandusky, OH 44870; The Kelleys Island Historical Society, P.O. Box 328, Kelleys Island, OH 43438; or The Old House Guild, 1415 Columbus Ave., Sandusky, OH 44870.  Your memories and words of comfort may be shared with AJ’s family at .  

JANE “EJAN” BLATT, 69, passed away Feb. 3, 2015, in the Martin Medical Center, Stuart, Fla.  For those who wish, contributions may be made to the Treasure Coast Hospice, 1201 SE Indian St., Stuart, FL 34997 or; or Molly’s House, 430 SE Osceola St., Stuart, FL 34994; or the charity of your choice.

DR. DAVID F. JAMES, 62, of Memphis, Tenn., passed away Feb. 17, 2015.  He was born in Fremont, Jan. 23, 1953, and was a graduate of Huron High School. A celebration of his life will take place at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 20, 812 Woodford Road, Kelleys island.  In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the American Heart Association, or the Alzheimer’s Association.

ROBERT P. “BOB” SCHNITTKER, 85, of Sandusky and Kelleys Island, passed away on Feb. 28, 2015. Memorial contributions may be made to the Columbus Avenue United Methodist Church; Kelleys Island Zion United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 445, Kelleys Island, OH 43438; or the Kelleys Island Historical Association, P.O. Box 328, Kelleys Island, OH 43438.  Pfeil Funeral Home, 617 Columbus Ave., Sandusky, is assisting the family with the arrangements.  Condolences may be shared with the family at  


ROBERT E. BEHLEN III, 62, of Columbus and Kelleys Island,  died March 4, 2015, in Ohio State University Hospital after a lengthy illness. A memorial service is being planned for the spring to be held on Kelleys Island. Ransom Funeral and Cremation Services, Castalia, is in charge of the arrangements

MARGARET "Maggie" FRANCES JOHNSON (nee Hodgson) age 59, died March 30, 2015.  Memorial Service held at BUSCH FUNERAL HOME,

LILLIAN M. PHINNEY, 90, of Kelleys Island, died April 28, 2015, in Admiral’s Pointe Nursing Home in Huron. Groff Funeral Homes & Crematory is assisting the family with arrangements.

GLORIA L. SHOLLENBERGER (nee Schneider), age 77, passed away April 28, 2015. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Love-A-Stray, P.O. Box 125, Avon Lake, Ohio 44012 or The Hospice of the Western Reserve, 17876 St Clair Ave., Cleveland, OH 44110.

Daniel “Dan” P. Neuman, 46, of Sandusky, passed away due to complications from muscular dystrophy, Monday, May 11, 2015.  Memorial contributions in Dan’s name may be made to the Erie County Board of DD, 4405 Galloway Rd., Sandusky, OH 44870, or to the Sandusky Sailing Club.  Condolences and gifts of sympathy may be shared with the family at  .  

LEIGHA N. HOSTAL age 19, passed away suddenly May 15, 2015.  Condolences may be shared at  Chambers Funeral Home, North Olmsted, OH  44070.

SHIRLEY A. TOMCHO, 79, passed away June 3, 2015.  Memorial contributions may be made to Kelleys Island Historical Association, 224 Division St., Kelleys Island OH 43438.  Condolences may be shared at the online guestbook:


$25 Initial Membership

$10 Renewal

$10 Crime-watch fund

Crime-watch is a fund to pay out $500 rewards for info that lead to the conviction of someone that 

breaks into or vandalizes property.  


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Mainland Address_____________________________________________________

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