Portage’s fairgrounds
expands by 76 acres
Members of the Portage County-Randolph Fair Board were still trying to scrub away smiles Nov. 1 after completing a land purchase that nearly doubles the size of the fairgrounds on Route 44 in Randolph.
“It’s been 30 years that we’ve been hoping to buy this property,” said Charlie Breiding, board president.
The fair board bought 76 acres of the Meacham farm on the north side of the fairgrounds, east of Route 44 and just north of the township’s center. The land is in two parcels, one of 42.5 acres directly to the north of the fairgrounds and another of 33.6 acres to the northeast.
The deal closed Nov. 1, with the fair board paying $444,284 to the Meacham family, the children of Howard and Constance Meacham. Howard died in 1980 and Mrs. Meacham lived on the farm until her death at age 101 in May 2005.
— Mike Sever, Record-Courier

31 are nabbed during
Ravenna drug sweep
In Operation Clean Sweep Ravenna, the Portage County Drug Task Force arrested 31 people in the city Nov. 1 for allegedly violating state narcotic laws. The arrests followed a seven-month investigation.
Task force detectives were aided by members of the Ravenna, Kent, Garrettsville and Hiram police departments, the Portage County Sheriff’s Office, Metro SWAT, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and Adult Parole Authority began. The 31 individuals were in custody by 10:30 a.m.
According to Portage County Sheriff David Doak and Ravenna Police Chief Tim Adkins, the drug task force made more than 100 narcotic transactions in Ravenna in the past six months.
Purchases of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, marijuana, ecstasy and prescription drugs were purchased inside residences, restaurants and on the streets of Ravenna.
As a result of this investigation, evidence was presented to the Portage County Grand Jury, which returned indictments against 31 individuals. All but one of the those arrested listed a Ravenna address.
— Record-Courier report

3 arrested in Kent for
Halloween robberies
Three men are in the Portage County Jail, charged with committing three armed robberies within the span of an hour on Oct. 27 during Kent’s unofficial Halloween celebration. Two victims suffered minor injuries, according to Kent police.
Gary L. Bacchus Jr., 19, of Cleveland, is charged with two counts of aggravated robbery, both first-degree felonies, and one count of improper handling of a firearm in a motor vehicle, a fourth-degree felony.
Michael McCollins Jr., 21, of Cleveland, is charged with two counts of aggravated robbery, while Christopher B. Mason Jr., 19, of Cleveland, is charged with two counts of complicity to aggravated robbery. All those charges are first-degree felonies.
The three were being held in the Portage County jail on 10 percent of $250,000 bond each, according to court records. Kent police allege that the three men approached the victims, displayed guns and demanded valuables.
The incidents took place in the 600 block of East Crain Avenue, 600 block of Franklin Avenue and on Golden Oaks Drive, police reported.
— Dave O’Brien, Record-Courier
Library’s hours listed
Local residents are reminded that Aurora Library’s hours are as follows: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays and Tuesdays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesdays and Fridays and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m . Saturdays.
Major acts set in area;
Bob  Earley promoting
Rockin’ on the River, Northeast Ohio’s longest running and best attended summer concert series in Cuyahoga Falls during the summer, will spend the winter in Streetsboro and Warren, with a stop in Kent.
Husband and wife duo, Bob Earley and Sandy Hurwitz Earley of Aurora, have teamed with friends Bob Teodosio, Thomas Simpson of Kent Stage and Warren’s River Rock at the Amp promoter/Sunrise Inn owner Kenny Haidaris to offer concerts during the Rockin’ off-season.
On Nov. 8, they will join Haidaris to co-host grammy nominee and Golden Globe winner Engelbert Humperdinck at Warren’s Packard Music Hall. Then it’s on to the Z-Plex in Streetsboro on Nov. 17 for Blues Traveler.
Kenny Rogers is scheduled at Packard Music Hall on Dec. 10. And on Dec. 20, the Kent Stage will host Frank and Dean: Together Again, a Las Vegas-style show starring Michael Sonata as Frank Sinatra and Scott Brotherton as Dean Martin.
Bob Earley said the idea is to give people a place to socialize, listen to good music and have fun instead of huddling in their homes, longing for warmer weather. And although the concerts aren’t free like Rockin’ on the River, Earley and friends vow to keep prices reasonable.
“From January to May, I get a lot of comments on my Facebook page from people who can’t wait for Rockin’ to start,” Bob Earley said. “It’s not just the bands. It’s getting together with friends and being in a safe place where you can get a little crazy.”
For ticket information, visit www.rockinontheriver.com/special%20events.html

Eateries to aid family
On Nov. 8, the Streetsboro, Kent, Twinsburg and Macedonia Bob Evans restaurants will host a fundraiser for the Thornton family of Ravenna to help defray expenses from an Oct. 6 accident.
Sierra Thornton, 15, was killed at a railroad crossing in Ravenna, and the other five members of her family were hospitalized. The fundraiser is to help funeral and hospitalization expenses, according to Tracy Claus, the general manager of the Streetsboro Bob Evans.
Clauf said the family eats at the Streetsboro restaurant regularly. Diners Nov. 8 can have 15 percent of their checks donated to the family when they present a flyer.
Uniform sale planned
Robinson Memorial Hospital Auxiliary plans a Roberts Medical Uniforms sale Nov. 7 from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Nov. 8 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Medical Arts Building, 6847 N.Chestnut St., Ravenna.