By Katelyn Sattler
Obetz Mayor Angela Kirk said the city’s annual Christmas Kickoff went well.
“We did our sleigh ride Saturday and it was really cold,” said Kirk. “I appreciate our staff who worked tirelessly to make sure it happened.”
During the Christmas Kickoff in Lancaster Park, families rode a carousel, carolers sang Christmas tunes, there were free cookies and cocoa, th annual tree lighting, ice sculpting, and pictures with Santa.
Kirk also recognized Hamilton Township High School Student Council for making a $3,000 donation to the food pantry.
“We asked for a donation of $100 and they raised $3,000, which allows the pantry to be able to take care of 15 families for Christmas. They did a wonderful job,” said Kirk
Kirk also enjoyed time with some area seniors.
“We got them horse and carriage drivers,” said Kirk. “They just thought that was the greatest thing in the world! We’re going to go see an Elvis tribute singer and they’re going to list it in their sound check. So, it’s kind of a big deal. I was lucky enough to be invited to attend.”
Obetz City Council recognized and thanked Councilwoman Bonnie Wiley, whose term on council ends at the end of the year, for her years of service and dedication to the people of Obetz at council’s Dec. 13 meeting.
She has served on city council and as chairwoman of the Obetz Historic and Preservation Committee. She will continue to serve Obetz residents as secretary of the Obetz Historians, a group that is working to preserve Obetz’s history.
“Historic preservation in Obetz helps keep communities beautiful and vibrant,” said Wiley. “It is an ingredient in stabilizing older communities and gives residents and businesses a stake in their community. It also encourages a sense of belonging and community pride.”
Obetz City Administrator Rod Davisson also thanked Wiley for her years of admirable service for the city of Obetz over the past years.
Other Obetz news
•Some city workers in attendance at the council meeting were recognized for their work. Those recognized were: Mike Corbitt – deputy administrator/city engineer; Kerri Duffy – parks and recreation director; Kyle Ingland – service department superintendent; Tim Ross – facilities superintendent; and Melanie Ross – community center manager.
•Kirk appointed Crystal Tucker and re-appointed Chuck Hughes to the planning and zoning commission.
The Obetz Historians continues to plan on how to document Obetz’s history.
On Dec. 8, the group discussed ho to incorporate as a non-profit 501(c)(3). Incorporating as a non-profit will cost abo ut$200, which concerns Obetz Historians President Joyce Blake.
“We don’t have any money,” said Blake. “Does this mean I will have to pay for it until we do some fundraisers to be able to reimburse me? If I make a mistake, how much will the amendments cost.”
The group decided to approach city of Obetz Law Director Gene Hollins to ask for legal guidance. Blake and Jerry Benson talked to Hollins during a break at the recent Obetz City Council meeting where he suggested they use the 501(c)(3) filings from the now-defunct Obetz Historical Society and the Secretary of State’s website as a guide to the necessary documents for the Obetz Historians. He also suggested looking for an accounting firm for IRS purposes to become a non-profit. The IRS rules for nonprofits have changed over the years.
The Obetz Historians will also need a federal ID, which is free to do online.
After incorporation, the group will focus on collecting more stories of Obetz’s history. They asked everyone in attendance at their recent meeting to write something about their own family to get everyone involved.
The group is considering fundraisers so they can afford to proceed.
The Historians elected Connie Callander as the new hospitality coordinator and Heather Coffenberry is the new membership chairperson. These officers add to the ranks of President Joyce Blake, Vice President Jerry Benson, Secretary Bonnie Wiley, and co-Treasurers Becci Thacker-Dunn and Diane Brooker.
The next Obetz Historian meeting is Jan. 19 at 6:30 p.m. in the Senior Center, 1650 Obetz Avenue. All meetings in 2022 will be on the third Wednesday of the month.