Wabash ‘finished 16th’ in America’s Best Communities competition
By Emma Rausch
Officials from the America’s Best Communities (ABC) competition named 15 communities that advanced into the semi-finals on Wednesday morning, Jan. 13. Wabash did not make the cut.
Last year, 138 applications representing 347 communities were submitted by the competition’s March 25 deadline. On April 29, Wabash was named among 50 communities as a quarterfinalist in the competition.
Since then, ABC Wabash’s steering committee developed the “Dream big. Be big.” campaign, which planned projects to submit to the competition and exhibited Wabash’s positive aspects in a series of videos developed by Green Hat Productions.
While representatives of the local committee admit there is some disappointment in not advancing, this is not a loss.
“I’m disappointed that we didn’t advance obviously,” Mayor Scott Long told The Paper of Wabash County on Wednesday, “but the team we have in place will drive the projects that were under the America’s Best Communities veil.”
Posted on 2016 Jan 19
Roann library kicks off centennial celebration
The cornerstone for the Roann Paw Paw Public Lirary was put in place in 1916. Photos by Joseph Slacian
By Joseph Slacian
ROANN – Residents here kicked off the Roann Paw Paw Township Public Library’s centennial celebration on Saturday with an open house in the facility.
While the library actually opened in 1914, it wasn’t until 1916 that work on the Arts and Crafts Style building at the corner of Chippewa and Pike streets started, thanks to funding from Andrew Carnegie.
Library Director Joy Harber noted that the celebration will continue throughout the year, with different activities planned each month.
“In February we’re going to have a coloring contest for the kids,” she said. “There will be a Lego contest for the older kids, and they’re going to try to build the front façade of the library."
Posted on 2016 Jan 19
Urbana Lions help with memorial project at NHS
Northfield Jr.-Sr. High School students work on projects illuminated by the new track lights in the facility’s art room. Photo provided
By Joseph Slacian
A contribution from the Urbana Lions Club to the Northfield High School Art Department is helping the spirit of a late NHS graduate live on.
The Lions donated $1,000 to the art department to help it finish raising the $2,000 needed to revamp the track lighting in the school’s art room.
The donation was made in memory of Vanessa Baer, a 2002 Northfield graduate and art student who was killed in a September 2005 airplane crash in rural that claimed three other people.
“It brings tears to my eyes as I type this,” Northfield art teacher Kelly Schuler told The Paper of Wabash County in an email, “as I can see Vanessa still in my mind as she worked in this room, and her bubbly personality, smile and freckles filled the space she was in.”
Posted on 2016 Jan 19
Four new assistant fire chiefs take office
By Joseph Slacian
Four new assistant fire chiefs received their oaths of office on Monday, Jan. 11, from Mayor Scott Long.
The four – Kent Mullett, Carl Hall, Adam Copeland and Andy Oswalt – were nominated by Fire Chief Barry Stroup and approved by Long.
“Mayor Long allowed me to select the assistant chiefs and he approved them,” Stroup told The Paper of Wabash County. “Technically, they are his appointments.”
The chief said the selection process wasn’t an easy one.
“It was difficult to select four out of many great candidates,” he said. “We have a very good department with quality men.”
Posted on 2016 Jan 19
NM native launching new web series
By Shaun Tilghman
Later this month, veteran actress and North Manchester native Rebecca Klingler will launch a 10-episode web series, entitled “The Calamities of Jane.” 
The series is loosely based on her own life as “an actress of a certain age” still pursuing her dream in a town and an industry that worships youth.
The weekly series will feature Klingler as the quirky Jane Singer, an actress with a Midwestern sensibility, who juggles auditions, ageism, crazy day jobs, and strange suitors, all en route to finding her place in the world.
Klingler was born in Kokomo, but her family moved to North Manchester when she was an infant. Her father, Charles, taught English at Manchester College while her mother, Susie, raised their seven children, of which Klingler was the fourth.
Posted on 2016 Jan 19
Regional Cities Initiative moves forward after funding snag
By Emma Rausch
The Regional Cities Initiative project-funding hit a snag on Tuesday Dec. 15, after Gov. Mike Pence announced three recipient winners instead of the approved two. But as of Jan. 5, plans will continue moving forward as state legislators voiced their approval to back the third region.
On Dec. 15, Pence announced plans to award three regions – North Central, Southwest and Northeast Indiana which encompasses Wabash County – $126 million to support regional development plans.
However, last May when the Initiative was originally signed into law, legislators only approved $84 million in state matching funds to award two recipients of the RCI program. The Initiative’s funding was generated by the 2015 Tax Amnesty program, which allowed people and businesses to pay up on overdue taxes.
Each region would receive $42 million in state matching funds.
Posted on 2016 Jan 19
Dillon elected City Council president
By Joseph Slacian
Wabash City Council member Bryan Dillon will serve as council president for 2016.
He was unanimously elected to the position on Monday, Jan. 11, during the first City Council meeting of Mayor Scott Long’s administration.
Among the council president’s duties is serving as a liaison between the council and the mayor’s office. The president also fills in for the mayor at various functions when the mayor is unable to attend.
“I’m honored that the council had the confidence in me,” Dillon told The Paper of Wabash County following the meeting.
Posted on 2016 Jan 19
Wabash man lead suspect in Marion homicide
Waylon Sadler
By Emma Rausch
MARION – A Wabash man is the lead suspect in a Marion homicide investigation as of noon Tuesday, Jan. 12.
Waylon Sadler, 31, Wabash, is currently being held at Grant County Jail following the death of James L. Zook Jr., 55, Marion.
The Marion Police Department was alerted to the death after Shannon Collins, Zook’s daughter and Sadler’s girlfriend, called 911 on Tuesday.
Posted on 2016 Jan 13

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