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Celebrating summer events

To the Editor,

The summer concerts at the Berkman Amphitheater have ended and the high school football season has begun so we can say that summer 2019 is in the books. For those of us at Historic Fort Steuben and the Steubenville Visitor Center, it has been a season to remember, both for the great events and for the weather challenges we faced (rescheduling four concerts!)

The Fort Steuben Summer Concerts were successful because of the great staff and volunteers who helped organize and run them, the talented performers, the generous donations and comments from the audience and the many sponsors listed in our program guide. But the concerts weren’t the only entertainment available this summer.

We want to express our gratitude to all the organizers, volunteers, performers, businesses and members of the community who supported these other events: Ohio Valley Frontier Days, the Holy Trinity Greek Food Festival, the Dean Martin Festival, the Hometown Celebration, Juneteenth Celebration and First Fridays on Fourth. The Fourth of July celebration was held for the first time at Historic Fort Steuben and was well received. Thanks also to the city parks and recreation department for operating the Belleview Pool and sponsoring the various marina events including the first Battle of the Bands. The Jefferson County Fair and the Toronto Festival of the Arts are annual events that showcase our local talent. And we mustn’t forget all the fun fundraisers and activities offered by the many churches and non-profits in the community.

We hope you noticed the added bistro tables and umbrellas around the fountain area, which give a festive flavor to the downtown, especially when food trucks were parked there. The new welcome sign at the corner of state Route 7 and Washington Street is another addition.

Our community is now blessed with three farmers markets: the Farmers Gateway Market (sponsored by the Jefferson Soil and Water Conservation District) on Wednesday evenings, the Downtown Farmers Market (sponsored by the Visitor Center) on Thursday mornings and the new Open Air Market (sponsored by the Harmonium Project) on Saturday mornings.

This summer the Visitor Center welcomed people from all over the country and overseas as well. They came to visit family or to see the murals or to attend one of the events or to simply find out more about the community; most of the comments we heard were positive if not glowing.

I encourage you to thank and patronize the businesses that gave financial and in-kind support to these projects — they are important contributors to our overall quality of life. Our local media – the Herald-Star, WTOV-TV and WTRF-TV – have faithfully promoted events here and on social media. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram also have helped let people know about all these events.

We still have much to do in revitalization, but we also have so much to be proud of. Thank you to all who are working so diligently to make our area a desirable place to live and work.

Judy Bratten

Executive director

Historic Fort Steuben

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