STOW — How a group of apartment residents kept busy over that past three winters is anything but puzzling.

Led by Marion Smith, a number of residents of Silver Lake Towers on Kent Road recently finished putting together a 6,000-piece jigsaw puzzle in the apartment complex’s library-game room.

"It’s been a work in progress for three years," said Smith. "The first year we worked on it was 2015. During the second year, Larry [Paserba] cut his hand on a saw so we did very little that year." Smith said she and Shirley Sharpless and Paserba worked on the puzzle every day.

"We worked on it during the winter months only," noted Paserba, adding, "when it wasn’t snowing." Paserba said the puzzle is going to be glued down and clear-coated through a process called "modge-podge." Then it can be displayed on the wall like a poster.

The puzzle, a full-color illustration of a lush, green forest populated by exotic animals and birds, measures 45 inches by 65 inches.

"I think it is wonderful," Rhodes said. "They have worked really hard on it for the last two-and-a-half years. It was a community project. I love it. I love it that they came in here and worked on it together."

Towers resident Frieda Lytle kept an eye on the puzzle people’s progress. Although she didn’t help put it together, Lytle liked to look in on her neighbors. Puzzle time in the game room was often filled with conversation fueled by coffee and doughnuts, said Smith. Other times it was a little more quiet.

"It was fun when I was down here working by myself," joked Paserba. 

According to Rhodes, the puzzle was donated to the Silver Lake Towers Association by the family of a resident who had passed away. "They knew that we had this library and puzzles and people who love to do puzzles," she said. "When we saw it was a 6,000-piece puzzle we just thought we could do a community project."

Reporter Steve Wiandt, can be reached at 330-541-9420, swiandt@recordpub.com or @SteveWiandt_RPC.