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Mount Vernon, Knox County, Ohio

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Kenyon's Brown Family Environmental Center seeks volunteers

GAMBIER — Want to get involved in the community, do something to help others, or have some fun? Consider volunteering with the Brown Family Environmental Center (BFEC), which seeks volunteers to help with programs, land management and more.

The BFEC at Kenyon College is a 480-acre preserve that has almost 9 miles of nature trails. The trails meander through forests, tall grass prairie, wetlands, a riparian corridor along the Kokosing River, and a beautiful, certified Wildlife Garden. The Resource Center is located close to the Kokosing Gap Trail at 9781 Laymon Road.

The mission of the BFEC is to conserve natural diversity and connect people to nature. For more than 21 years, the BFEC has accomplished its mission through environmental education, research, and restoring forested and prairie habitats.

The BFEC serves thousands of visitors each year through engaging public programs, community events, elementary school field trips and more. “But we cannot do it alone,” said BFEC Manager Noelle Jordan. “Dedicated volunteers are the reason we are able to provide these opportunities for our community.”

Volunteers can select from a variety of opportunities to offer their talents. To find a good match, contact Noelle Jordan at 740-427-5052.

Be a field trip leader
Each year, nearly 1,000 elementary students visit the BFEC to enjoy a hands-on, outdoor learning experience. Students explore the forest, prairie, river, wildlife garden and more.

Help with land management
The BFEC has almost 9 miles of trails for student and public use. These trails wind through prairies, woodlands, wetlands, and along the Kokosing River. Help manage invasive plant species, plant trees, clean up the river, and more.

Help in the office
Rather stay inside? Help the BFEC answer its phones, send out mailings, digitize files, do data entry and design indoor exhibits.

Work in the wildlife garden
If you like to dig in the dirt, help maintain the BFEC’s beautiful 1.5-acre wildlife garden. In “the jewel” of the BFEC, you will learn about native plants, composting and local wildlife.

Work at special events
The fall Harvest Festival and spring Earth Day event would not be possible without dedicated volunteers to lead activities, guide short hikes, distribute information about the BFEC, and more. Enjoy live music while you work.

Lead a public program
If you would like to share your knowledge with others, consider designing and leading a public program. Birding, composting, orienteering, trees, salamanders, gardening — the possibilities are endless.

Special projects
Do you like photography? Carpentry? The BFEC is always looking for people to share their talents. Let us know what you would like to do, and we’ll find you a project!

If you cannot volunteer but would still like to enjoy the great outdoors, you can find a calendar of events at http://bfec.kenyon.edu. Contact the center at 740-427-5052 for more information.

The Brown Family Environmental Center is located at 9781 Laymon Road. To get there, follow Gambier Street (S.R. 229) east from downtown Mt. Vernon about 4 miles. Turn right onto Laymon Road, and park at the BFEC Visitor Center.

Kenyon College: Gas station returning to Gambier

By Dylan McCament, KnoxPages.com Reporter

GAMBIER - Village residents have had to drive elsewhere to get gas ever since the only station in town closed in early January.

Kenyon College owns Campus Auto & Fuel, located at 101 West Brooklyn Street, and rents the location to operators who run the station and auto repair shop.

College officials are currently working to find a new operator, according to Mark Kohlman, chief business officer.

"We expect to have the station reopened by April," Kohlman said. "The closure was a result of the college terminating the lease with the previous operator."

Campus auto Feb 2017

Campus Auto sits vacant now but will soon re-open in Gambier - KP Photo by Dylan McCament

Kohlman said that Campus Auto & Fuel will remain a full-service gas station with auto repair services. He added that there will be no real changes or additions.

"We have gotten a lot of feedback," Kohlman said. "People in the community like having the gas station. It does have to be sustainable as a business."

He added that the college does not discuss the terms of such contracts, adding that he cannot comment as to the reason why the contract with the previous operator was terminated.

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For more local KnoxPages.com news click here.

Letter to the KP Editor: MVHS Academic Boosters offer ACT workshops

To the KP Editor:
There is a state mandate that all Ohio high school juniors take the ACT test. The Mount Vernon High School Academic Booster Club provides a test preparation course. This spring we have space for 36 students interested in preparing for the ACT. We still have space in our class and are taking registrations until February 10.

Actually we provide test preparation courses both in the fall and spring. In the fall we offer both an ACT and SAT test preparation class. In the spring, we offer an ACT test preparation class. Each year we send out a newsletter with this information to all high school students in the district. We purchase materials and hire teachers for these classes.

Mount Vernon High School students receive priority, but we do open our classes to all students within Knox County. The charge is $60 and we do provide scholarships to qualified students. A test preparation course is a wonderful opportunity to learn test taking strategies and study methods. If you would like information please contact the MVHS guidance office.

Colleen Clarkson
President, MVHS Academic Booster Club
Mount Vernon

Soroptomist Spring Style show April 1

MOUNT VERNON - Soroptimist International of Mount Vernon and Knox County will hold their Spring Style Show and Luncheon on April 1, 2017 at Gund Commons, on the Kenyon College Campus. Doors open at 11:30 A.M. This Style Show highlights local Knox County businesses, featuring local models, who showcase the latest in Spring fashion styles.

The mission of Soroptimist International is to improve the lives of women and girls. Soroptimist International of Mount Vernon and Knox County was founded in 1956 with Helen Zelkowitz as founding president. Soroptimist represent women in all walks of life, in a wide variety of professions. The focus of our organization is sex trafficking, locally, statewide and worldwide. Local projects financially supported are New Directions Domestic Violence Shelter, Project Delta, Hope Now, Distinguished Young Women of Knox County, Christmas in July for Interchurch Social Services and the women’s shelter at the Winter Sanctuary. In addition, the club supports 3 financial scholarships to traditional and non-traditional women, who are continuing their education. Soroptimist International is a 501C3 tax exempt not-for-profit organization.


Individual tickets or reserved tables can be purchased at Flowers for You, 22 East Gambier Street after February 14, 2017.

County offering Foster Parent training

MOUNT VERNON – The Knox County Department of Job & Family Services will be hosting pre-service training for anyone interested in becoming a licensed foster care home through the county. Foster parents are needed in Knox County for children in care, to keep them in their communities and schools.

There are 12 different workshops being offered locally for the pre-service training, including: Orientation to Foster Care, Adoption and Kinship Care, April 22, 9 a.m. to noon; The Child Protection Team, April 22, 1 to 4 p.m.; Childhood Development, April 25, 6 to 9 p.m.; Childhood Trauma and Its Effects, April 27, 6 to 9 p.m.; Child Sexual Abuse, April 29, 9 a.m. to noon; Minimizing the Trauma of Placement, April 29, 1 to 4 p.m.; Transcending Differences in Placement, May 2, 6 to 9 p.m.; Helping the Child Manage Emotions and Behaviors, May 4, 6 to 9 p.m.; Understanding Primary Families, May 6, 9 a.m. to noon; The Effects of Caregiving on the Caregiver Family, May 6, 1 to 4 p.m.; Long-term Separation, May 9, 6 to 9 p.m.; and Post Adoption Issues for Families, May 11, 6 to 9 p.m.

There is no charge for the workshops, which will be held in the KCDJFS 3rd Floor Conference Rooms at the Knox County Service Center, 117 E. High St., Mount Vernon. Attendees are asked to use the building entrance off Chestnut Street. Reservations to attend any of the training workshops is requested by Monday, April 17, by calling 740-399-3054.

Anyone interested in becoming a foster parent is asked to call 740-399-3054 for more information and to begin the process of being a part of a child’s journey.

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