Storms, gold, exploring DORA


Editor’s note: Following is a month-by-month look back at the top local news stories from 2022 as reported by The Times-Gazette. We wish our readers a Happy New Year.


7 – A summer storm sent a tree through a trailer, putting holes in it, knocked the power out in multiple locations and destroyed several trees and limbs. Lynchburg Joint Fire and Ambulance District Chief Jeff Turner said the district responded to 1715 North Street in Dodsonville because of a report of a tree that fell on a trailer.

8 – Rye Walker, a Columbia University student with Hillsboro ties, won a gold medal with his college team at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association National Championships held at Lake Windsor, New Jersey. Walker’s father is Richard Walker, a 1985 graduate of Hillsboro High School, and his grandfather is Dick Walker of S.R. 73 in Hillsboro.

11 – Dr. Nicole Roades, the former vice president of academics at Southern State Community College (SSCC), was announced to be taking over as president. Dr. Kevin Boys, the previous president, retired from the position in June. Roades has been in leadership roles with SSCC since 1998 in student services, communication, assessment and planning, and advancement.

21 – Following a mid-June fire at the Lynchburg Post Office, it was still unknown when the post office would re-open. The Times-Gazette made “several” calls to the U.S. Postal Service but received no answer. At the time, the Lynchburg postal workers were working out of the Hillsboro Post Office.

27 – The Marriott Hotel planned for the south corner of Harry Sauner Road and S.R. 73 finally moved forward in the construction process. Julie Bolender, director of Highland County Economic Development, said the county was receiving bids for the an environmental review for the hotel following receiving a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) in the amount of $500,000 to use as a loan to Leo Capital Group for the construction of the hotel.


2 – The Greenfield Exempted Village School District and Bright Local Schools were selected to receive more than $200,000 total Ohio K-12 School Safety Grant funds, with Greenfield getting $155,730 to be divided across its five buildings and Bright getting $50,000 for Whiteoak High School. For the Greenfield specifics, Buckskin Elementary received $26,830, Greenfield Elementary received $32,483, Greenfield Middle School received $36,888, McClain High School received $36,137 and Rainsboro Elementary received $23,392.

9 – The Hillsboro McDonald’s reopened following a three-month hiatus due to a complete upgrade. The new building was completely remade at the same location on North High Street with “an updated, contemporary architectural design and interior,” according to owner Leigh Chamness.

15 – Hillsboro City Council discussed the possibility of creating a Designated Outdoor Refreshment Area (DORA) in Hillsboro. The city council said the area would allow customers within much of the city’s uptown area” to drink alcohol bought at local businesses in the specific area. However, council also said they planned to hold more meetings and hear back from the public about the topic before making an official decision.

17 – Penny Dreher, executive director of the Paint Valley Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health (ADAMH) Board, attended the weekly meeting of the Highland County Board of Commissioners to discuss the recommendation for multiple new mental health facilities to be built. Those facilities included a 23-hour observational unit tentatively placed in Ross County and a crisis stabilization unit tentatively placed in Pickaway County.

18 – The village of Greenfield and city manager Todd Wilkin made a records request of the Highland County Land Reutilization Corporation (land bank) through email. Per the email, Wilkin said Greenfield stopped demolition on the Elliott Hotel because of land bank “inquiries” to use a Brownfield Grant to help with demolition and remediation, but the agreement never went the way it was “previously agreed.”


5 – Sydney Hamilton and Jayden Hixson won the queen and king competitions, respectively, at the 2022 Highland County Fair. Neither Hamilton nor Hixson originally planned on running for royalty but were urged by peers to do so. Hamilton’s attendants were Somara Donley, Trinity Edenfield and Addy Knauff, with Hixson’s attendant being Brendan Hagar.

7 – Parts of North West Street were planned to be closed in the following months for a waterline replacement project. Shawn Adkins, the public works superintendent for Hillsboro, said the project was planned to run from West Main Street to Fenner Avenue and take around 90 to 120 days to complete.

8 – The Grand Champion Barrow exhibited Cade Sponcil sold for $6,600 to multiple people and organizations at the 2022 Highland County Fair.

12 – Highland County Community Action Organization (HCCAO) was awarded $500,000 by the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) to help give workforce training, education, wellness coaching and recovery support to help the substance use disorder “crisis” in the county. This award was a part of a total of $12 million through ARC’s INSPIRE Initiative.

23 – The Hillsboro City Schools Athletic Department announced that it had started to broadcast games live on its new YouTube channel. The channel, titled “Hillsboro City Schools Streaming Events,” allows people that can’t travel to games to watch them live, and if someone is completely unavailable at the time of the event, the games will be archived following the live stream.

Reach Jacob Clary at 937-402-2570.

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