Sunday, October 19, 2003

Ohio Bicentennial Notebook


State's official revelry to end in Columbus

By Randy McNutt
The Cincinnati Enquirer

COLUMBUS - Although Ohio's official bicentennial programs will end Oct. 24-26 with events in the capital, many programs will continue locally for the rest of the year.

The end of the eight-month celebration will end with the casting and ringing of Franklin County's bicentennial bell at the COSI science museum. Closing ceremonies will be held at the Statehouse.

All events are free to the public.

At 8 p.m. Oct. 25, the Franklin County bell will be the 88th one cast by Cincinnati's Verdin Co. The program will also feature the U.S. Air Force Band of Flight performing at nearby Veterans Memorial at 7 p.m.

The program at COSI runs 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Oct. 25 and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Oct. 26 with "Best of the Bicentennial" displays at the Statehouse. Official closing ceremonies will be at 1 p.m. Oct. 26.

For the bicentennial, which has been rolling for several years, 850 projects have been undertaken. More than 1,250 events and celebrations were held this year alone, said Lee Yoakum, a spokesman for the Ohio Bicentennial Commission in Columbus.

About 900 permanent historical markers now stand, he said, which is double the number that existed before 1998.

Five signature events, including the Bicentennial Wagon Train, were held this year, with more than 1 million visitors participating.

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DOWNTOWN-The John A. Roebling Suspension Bridge is among 10 sites across Ohio to receive an Ohio bicentennial historical marker relating to science and technology breakthroughs.

Others include a marker for Albert Sabin and the polio vaccine. It is at 23 Albert Sabin Way, on the campus of the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and Children's Hospital Research Foundation.

From 1939 to 1969, Sabin conducted in Cincinnati his most significant research on polio and tropical diseases.

The Cincinnati Water Works has already received a marker for being the first publicly owned water system in Ohio.

A dedication time for the Suspension Bridge marker has yet to be arranged. The marker will be installed adjacent to the Cincinnati abutment to the bridge.

When it opened in 1867, it was the world's largest suspension bridge.

Another marker has been installed at the Dayton Engineering Club in Montgomery County to commemorate the Wright Brothers' experiments with manned flight.

Other markers commemorate, among other things, the invention of Teflon and xerography and improvements to the paper bag.

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COLUMBUS - Every school library for grades 6-12 and each of Ohio's 250 public libraries will receive a free copy of Ohio: 200 Years, the one-hour documentary that aired on public television in May.

"This video is an important educational tool ... to share with future generations to leave a lasting legacy and educate Ohioans of all ages on the richness of Ohio history and the forces and people that shaped it," said Stephen George, executive director.

Bicentennial Notebook appears periodically throughout 2003. Send items to Randy McNutt, the Enquirer, 7700 Service Center Drive, West Chester OH 45015. Telephone: 755-4158. Fax: 755-4150. E-mail: Rmcnutt@enquirer.com.




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