I discovered that the village of Bergholz has more than the houses and businesses along the main thoroughfare when we did a search for the eating establishment on Second Street where we were to meet Virginia and Curt Glenn last week.
We didn't use our untrustworthy GPS, as it can get us into unknown places. And because we heard the words that always get us into trouble - "you can't miss it" - we believed it would be easy to find. After stopping three times for directions, doubt was starting to creep in.
I started the confusion by thinking that Marshall's was in Amsterdam and after looking in vain for a gazebo that Virginia said would be nearby, we asked a young man walking along the sidewalk. He wasn't sure but pointed me toward Marsha's Diner, where we stopped to ask if this could be the place, and I had misunderstood the name. After all, Marsha's and Marshall's sound somewhat the same.
WELL-KEPT SECRET — The combined Bill DeNoon Memorial Pavilion and Ralph McBane Memorial Grandstand seems to be a well-kept secret to all but baseball fans. It came about in 2012 and is a proud accomplishment for the village of Bergholz. It will be the site of the All Star Tournament that starts Monday, with eight teams playing each night. Two will be at the grandstand fields, one game on the Fourth Street field and one on Seventh Street.
-- Esther McCoy
"No, there was a Marshall's, and it was further down the road," a customer replied. The only hint that helped us in this advice was that we turn right on First Street.
To my country ears, further down the road, meant a short distance. But we drove for a time, and Lamont and I started looking at each other with a "Why does this always happen to us" look in our eyes.
We came to Bergholz, and soon I saw a sign proclaiming it to be First Street and turned in. I noticed that it was completely residential and interrupted a man who was mowing his lawn to ask for help again.
When I said we wanted Marshall's he merely raised his arm and pointed off in the distance. There on Second Street was a gazebo and beyond that was our destination. Like a mirage in the desert, there was a big sign proclaiming Marshall's.
Because we had started out early, we got there at the right time and walked in looking calm and serene, like we just breezed in from Smithfield with no trouble at all. So much for appearances.
I met the Bergholz postman, T.J. Balint, who has joined forces with Virginia Glenn to help make a wonderful day happen on July 27, when the Civil War Comes to Bergholz. They will be celebrating 150 years of history with a John Hunt Morgan Heritage Trail tour, with re-enactors of Morgan and his wife.
When Virginia gets started with a project, she just doesn't let loose. She, Curt and T.J. put together a reprint of the book "Last Night and Last Day," with pages of actual history of when Morgan spent his last free night in Bergholz on July 25, 1863. This was right before surrendering to the Union forces the next day at West Point.
Balint wanted Lamont and me to follow him to the new pavilion and grandstand at the baseball park. It was completed last year but is still new to the village. The pavilion is called the Bill DeNoon Memorial Pavilion, and the grandstand is named the Ralph McBane Memorial Grandstand. There is a new electrical scoreboard in operation on field 2 and plans for another to be installed on field 1 later this summer.
This will be a great site for the All-Star tournament that starts Monday, with eight teams playing each night, according to Coach Dave McBane, coach.
"We had great community support for this," he said.
T.J., who served as the pacer car to lead us to the stadium, brought his dog, Baxter, along on the ride. Baxter is aware that as soon as the game is over he can approach the concession trailer for a free hot dog handout. And I got a big kiss from Baxter when we were introduced.
Sarah Cross, OSU agriculture and natural resources educator, has been promoting the growing season and insect identification through her programs and workshops.
There is now a community garden in Hopedale, and there are five workshops left for learning about nature. They will be held across the street from the fire house.
All will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. The July 23 program is attracting beneficial insects to the garden; Aug. 6, planting the fall garden; Aug. 27, learning to identify insects; Sept. 3, food preservation basics; and Sept. 24, soil sampling and cover crops. There are children's activities during each workshop.
The Smithfield United Methodist Women held its annual picnic at the beautiful and large home of Betty Ruttencutter on wide open spaces that the family has named Sky View Acres.
I am not good at guessing how many candy pieces are in a Coke glass, but that was one of the games Lorrie Greene had us play. Liz Matthews was the winner of the glass and the candy within. I was 20 candy pieces short in my guess.
Karen Rish brought her grandson, Joel Miller, along for the picnic. He is the son of Misty and Ryan Miller and a most adorable, little guy with sparkling auburn hair. He took a liking to me and went into my arms immediately after dinner. I think he wanted me to take him to the slides and swings.
All the young people, and the adults, too, were treated to ice cream cones. Joel had a problem with his and part of it ended up on the concrete apron at the garage.
There was some amazing food at the covered dish event. I loved Sarah Cusick's French green bean, corn and petite pea salad. Also, Betty Ruttencutter makes the most awesome peanut butter fudge, and Carolyn Rea makes great noodles. Actually, everything was so tasty you couldn't help but try it all.
Our son, Jay tells everyone that we cannot make it to his Lewis Center home without a stop at an eating place and a roadside stop where there is a trailer that offers coffee and tea. It is always better than the hot beverages from a machine. And he is right.
At a recent stop to quiet my hunger pangs, I glanced around at my surroundings, and there was a display of old-time products, including some that are still around, and some baking utensils. When I saw this I had to whip out my camera and take a shot.
Naturally, the flash from the camera attracted attention to our table and had people wondering if the paparazzi was present.
(McCoy, a resident of Smithfield, is a staff columnist and food editor for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times. She can be contacted at email@example.com.)