Robot Mania

Robot enthusiasts ages 10-18 are welcomed to come to the Gates Mills Branch of the Cuyahoga County Public Library, 1491 Chagrin River Road, tonight (Thursday) at 6 p.m. for Robot Mania, a monthly program where kids can build and program LEGO(r) Mindstorms NXT robots. Registration is requested for this free program at 440-423-4808.

Tweens at CHF

Children in grades three to five are welcomed to the Chagrin Falls Branch of the Cuyahoga County Public Library, 100 E. Orange St., to make a difference in the community and library and have fun while doing it, Tuesday (Feb. 26) at 6 p.m. The tweens group will meet monthly to discuss books, volunteer and more. Registration is requested for this free program at 440-247-3556.

Teen Code Cave

Come gather ‘round to learn computer programming skills at the Gates Mills Branch of the Cuyahoga County Public Library, 1491 Chagrin River Road, Feb. 28 at 6 p.m. Teens in grades six to 12 will explore various coding concepts and program languages along with other teens. Offered monthly, this program gives students the opportunity to build upon what they have learned. Register for any or all dates of the program. Beginners welcomed. Registration is requested for this free program at 440-423-4808.

Fairmount, library literacy program

Fairmount Center the Arts, with the support of a grant from the Ohio Arts Council, is partnering with the Geauga County Public Library’s Geauga West Branch, 13455 Chillicothe Road (Route 306) in Chester, for four early childhood, literacy-based programs for children ages 3-6 years with their accompanying grown-ups.

These programs will be offered free due to a grant received by Fairmount Center for the Arts from the Ohio Arts Council. The first workshop, “Zoom to the Moon,” is held March 6 at 1 p.m. Pre-registration is requested through the library at 440-729-4250.

Geauga Beef and Swine update

Geauga Beef and Swine had a meeting on Feb. 3 at 4 p.m. It was Super Bowl Sunday, so during role call everyone stated who they wanted to win. We had four members give reports on a topic related to their 4-H project. After reports, we learned about swine breeds, beef breeds, tips to keep animals warm in the winter, tips for raising meat birds, how to select your pigs for your 4-H project and about passion in your life and 4-H project. Our club will be competing in the Geauga County Window Display Contest March 3-9 to promote the 4-H program. The display will be at Mapledale Farm, 9763 Old State Road in Hambden Township. If you have any questions about our club, please contact Nancy Wetzel at 440-286-8671.

- By Emily Christian, fifth-grader and news reporter

Eighth-graders receive scholarships

Four eighth grade students from St. Joan of Arc Catholic School in Chagrin Falls were recently recognized for their academic achievements at area high schools. Jake Romanini and Ellie Coulson both qualified as Arrupe Scholars at Walsh Jesuit. The Arrupe scholarship is offered to students whose score on the high school placement exam places them in the top 5 percent of the nation. Jake was also recognized as an Ignatian Scholar at Saint Ignatius High School due to his outstanding entrance exam scores.

Additionally, Ellie, Bridget Fitzmaurice and Finn Matheney were recognized at Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin’s Linking Leaders Scholarship Recognition Ceremony. These students were recognized for their exceptional academic achievement as demonstrated on the NDCL placement and scholarship test.

Registration is currently open for the 2019-2020 school year at St. Joan for kindergarten through eighth-grade students. For more information, call Principal Shelley DiBacco at 440-247-6530 or visit

NDES opens multipurpose room

After a year of planning and almost four months of renovation, the new multipurpose room at Notre Dame Elementary School opened last week. Students in grades kindergarten to six have the opportunity for daily indoor recess in the new room during inclement weather, and other uses include after care, assemblies, a gathering space for students, concerts and more. Teacher can also use the space to expand classroom space for group and collaborative learning.

Friendship partners make Valentine’s

Following a mass with Celebrant Father Jeremy Merzweiler, students across Notre Dame Elementary School gathered with their friendship partners to create a special Valentine’s Day art project for the Sisters in Health Care, Notre Dame Village and area nursing homes.

JFS camp applications available

Applications are available for Geauga County Job and Family Services’ annual summer camp and enrichment program. Each year, more than 100 Geauga County children benefit from this program which is funded solely through donations from individuals, churches, business and civic groups.

Families must complete an application and provide verification of their income. For more information about this program or to request an application, contact Sara Shininger at 440-285-9141, ext. 1263. If you would like to donate to the summer camp and enrichment program, please make checks payable to “Special Services.” Checks can be mailed to Geauga Co. Job and Family Services, 12480 Ravenwood Dr., Chardon, OH 44024. For more information, email

Robotics qualifies for championship

For the first time in school history, Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin’s robotics team has qualified for the FIRST Tech Challenge state championship tournament following an impressive performance at the Kent State regional competition. The Lions will head to Loveland High School in southwest Ohio to compete against the state’s top robotics teams on Saturday.    

In addition to qualifying for the state tournament, the Lions won four major awards at the regional contest. The team earned second place in the Cuyahoga Community College Regional Design award recognizing functional and aesthetic design elements of the robot; the Kent State regional connect award for actively promoting relationships with professionals and companies and the Kent State Regional Promote award for their video promotion work. Junior Allison Daher was also named a Tri-C Regional Dean’s List semifinalist for demonstrating leadership, passion, technical expertise and creativity.

NDCL celebrates spirit week

The two cold days that cancelled school and interrupted Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin’s annual spirit week did nothing but heat up school spirit as the Student Activities Board extended the wintertime fun through the middle of the following week.   

Spirit Week features friendly class competitions ranging from scavenger hunts and themed dress downs to tardiness records and Twitter polls. The popular coin war netted $2,157, more than double the $1,000 goal. All proceeds will benefit Catholic Relief Services and Blessing House.   

In addition to planning and directing the competitions, Student Activities Board treated students and staff to free ice cream sundaes, ice cream sandwiches, cotton candy, daily raffles and a prize wheel.     

The week culminated with the spirit games assembly in McGarry Gym. Students and teachers competed in nine high-energy games as senior John Burwinkel and academic coach Andrew Mooney provided color commentary on the video screens. When all the points were counted, the senior class once again emerged victorious, proudly celebrating back-to-back Spirit Week championships in 2018 and 2019.

Kindergarten celebrates 100

Kindergarten students at Notre Dame Elementary School dressed up as superheroes to celebrate “Zero the Hero” and their 100th day of school. Students in Mrs. Wachob’s class shared 100 items in their show and tell collections, scavenger hunted for 100 heart stickers, completed a 100-number writing chart, did 100 jumping jacks and of course counted up to 100 by 1’s, 2’s, 5’s and 10’s. Students in Mrs. Looman’s class made capes with 100 items, built towers with 100 pieces, counted gumballs to 100 and wrote about what it will be like when they turn 100 years old.

Students experience Gestures of the Mass

Marilyn Wright teaches the Good Shepherd Catechesis to the fourth-graders in Mrs. Tartamella’s class at Notre Dame Elementary School every Tuesday morning. The students are currently learning about the Mass and the preparation of the Eucharist.

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