DePiero gets $128,000;

Januska interim head

At City Council's Jan. 13 committee of the whole meeting, members reviewed an ordinance approving the legal services contract with new Law Director Dean DePiero.

The contract calls for a base salary for DePiero of $128,000 for 2014. Former Law Director Alan Shorr received $130,645 in 2013. The contract was on first reading at Council's regular Jan. 13 meeting.

Meanwhile, Council members also discussed at the committee of the whole session an ordinance approving Mayor Ann Womer Benjamin's delegation of Denise Januska as interim planning-zoning-buildin director until a permanent director is appointed.

Januska will receive a salary of $67,933. In her current position as planning and zoning inspector, she receives $61,757 per year.

Dental offices sought

At its first meeting of 2014 today (Jan. 15), the city's planning commission will review a preliminary site plan for a new dental office for Bodrum LLC at 485 N. Aurora Road, just south of Hawthorn Drive. The session starts at 7 p.m. in Town Hall.

Concerts slated again

It might be snowy and cold outside, but the city is looking ahead to the sounds of summer.

The parks and recreation department will again host six free summer concerts on June 11 and 25, July 9 and 23 and Aug. 6 and 20 from 7 to 9 p.m. at Veterans Memorial Park's gazebo.

Bands are needed, and anyone in a band which would like to be considered for a date should call Colleen Martin at 330-995-9149.

The concerts also are an excellent sponsorship opportunity for local businesses and groups. For more information about sponsorships, call Martin.

Becker party planned

The public is invited to a celebration / retirement party marking Charlie Becker's 48 years of service with the Aurora Fire Department.

The event will be Jan. 31 at 6 p.m. at Doogan's in Barrington Town Square. The cost is $15. Heavy appetizers will be included, and there will be a cash bar.

Tickets must be purchased by Jan. 27 from John Schmader at 330-995-9142 or Joyce Smolen at 330-995-9136 at the fire department.

Cash is preferred as payment for tickets, but checks will be accepted. They should be made payable to the AFFA (Aurora Firefighters Association).

Shunbanshi dojo eyes

new pupils for classes

Shunbanshi Karate, which operates in the former Reminderville Town Hall on Glenwood Boulevard across from the police station, welcomes students. Classes in Kyokushinkai karate have been offered since January 2012.

The main instructor is Sjoerd van Schie, a 36-year veteran in martial arts. The site is not a commercial dojo, but charges a low payment per month with no contracts, admnistration fees or commitments.

The dojo has nearly 30 registered students, and room for new ones, especially in the ages 4 to 12 range.

Shunbanshi has been invited to teach karate at the Recreational Sports Center at Kent State University. It is a member of the World Kyokushinkai Organization and affiliated with the United States Karate Federation and Internatiional Oyama Karatedo Kyokushin Unio.

For details, call 330-283-9710, visit or email

Women's night slated

Area women are invited to a "New Year, New You" women's night event Jan. 23 from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at ThornCreek Winery and Gardens on Treat Road in Aurora.

Women can visit with companies that offer products to help create a "new you" for 2014, including Ava Gray Direct, Thirty-One Gifts, Juice Plus, the Pampered Chef and Chole + Isabel.

Those attending are encouraged to take donations for Volunteers of America and its food pantry. For details, email

Chambers to sponsor

women's expo Jan. 30

The Twinsburg Chamber of Commerce, along with the Aurora and Solon Chambers, will host its first annual Women's Expo, titled "New Year, New You" on Jan. 30 at the Hilton Garden Inn from 4 to 7 p.m.

Admission is free to the public. More than 50 booths will feature goods and services for women, including salons/beauty consultants, fitness centers, health and wellness practitioners, clothing boutiques, travel agencies, financial services and charitable organizations.

Also included will be interactive workshops at 5 and 6 p.m. presented by Doris Mayer of Mayer Business Group LLC. Door prizes will be awarded every hour.

Sponsorships include platinum sponsors Laus Deo Salon and Key Bank and gold sponsor Oglebay Resort and Conference Center. Among silver sponsors are the Campus of Anna Maria and Howard Hanna in Aurora.

Sponsorships and booth space are available. For information, email Abby Schroll at

Libraries to be closed

All branches and offices of the Portage County District Library will be closed Jan. 20 for Martin Luther King Jr. Day. They will resume normal operating hours on Jan. 21. For information about library programs and services, visit