Warren County residents who own dogs have until Jan. 31 to purchase a 2014 license without facing a penalty fee.
New or renewal licenses cost $15 each or $75 for a kennel license. Special bone tags are available for $20, with $5 of that benefiting the Warren County Humane Association.
Tags can be purchased online at www.co.warren.oh.us/auditor or at a number of businesses across the county. In Mason, tags can be purchased at the Mason Family Pet Hospital at 771 Reading Road; the Mason Animal Hospital at 770 Reading Road or the Misty Vistas Pet Hospital at 5250 Courseview Drive.
All dogs aged three months or older are required by law to have a tag.
Beginning Feb. 1, a $15 late fee will be assessed for any renewal registrations.
David Yost, along with his sister, Sarah McClain, took over ownership of the Yost Pharmacy in Mason earlier this year. They are the third generation owners. It was started by their grandfather in 1945 and has been a staple along Main Street in downtown Mason every since. The Enquirer/ Liz Dufour / The Enquirer
Rachel Richardson reports:
Dick Yost remembers when downtown Mason was a bustling hub of activity.
Farmers from as far north as Dayton flocked to the area’s grocery stores, hotel and even a small theater.
“In the 1940s and 1950s, it was the retail center in Mason,” said Yost, whose family-owned Yost Pharmacy has been a mainstay of the city’s downtown since 1945. “We only had one traffic light in town, and you would have traffic backed up on a Friday night. That was a whole different climate.”
The once-lively, night-on-the-town destination has since turned into a ghost town, local business owners say.
Some independent business owners here say they’re struggling to compete with nearby retail juggernauts Deerfield Towne Center and Voice of America Centre. Others report steady sales and growth but say they’ve had to learn to adapt against the creeping forces of homogenization.
More than 50 businesses line the city’s downtown overlay district, which extends about 10 blocks along U.S. 42 from Fourth Avenue to Kings Mills Road.
Miami Valley Gaming is offering an inside look of their Turtlecreek Township racino a week before it opens to gamblers that sign up online for their loyalty card.
The new racino opens on Dec. 12, but the sneak preview happens on Thursday between 5 and 9 p.m. for those registered for MVG Club cards at miamivalleygaming.com. Guests who sign up early also get a free T-shirt, $15 of free play and 5,000 points.
“We’re so excited to give a glimpse of the new restaurants, bars, players club, gaming floor and racetrack to some of our most enthusiastic guests,” said Jim Simms, general manager of Miami Valley Gaming.
In addition, MVG Club members will be eligible for the 12 Days of Opening giveaway. From Dec. 1 to Dec. 12, Miami Valley Gaming will give away $75,000 in free play. Each day a new winner is selected, with amounts increasing by $1,000 a day. By Dec. 12, one lucky MVG Club member will win $12,000 in free play, just in time for the grand opening.
As the Enquirer reported, Simms predicted the new racino would generate $125 million in gambling revenue during its first year of operation.
Miami Valley Gaming is the new site for Lebanon Raceway and will include 1,600 video slots – making it the region’s first racino. It joins the new Horseshoe Casino in downtown Cincinnati and three riverboat casinos in Southeast Indiana.
Over the past four years, Franklin County landed 98tax-credit projects – almost twice as many as any other county. It received more than 20 percent of all promised jobs and payroll tied to the state’s tax-credit program, compared to 5 percent of promised jobs and 7 percent of payroll for Hamilton County.
The potential value of tax credits to business: nearly $70 million in Franklin County, just $25 million in Hamilton County.
“We need to be more aggressive,” said Hamilton County Commissioner Greg Hartmann. “It certainly sounds like, because state government is based in Franklin County, they get a disproportionate amount.
“We need to push on the state to let them know we want a fair share.”
The Warren County Visitors Guide received a first place RUBY Award from the Ohio Tourism Association.
It was one of four RUBY – Recognizing Uncommon Brilliance in the Travel and Tourism Industry – awards the Warren County Convention and Visitors Bureau received for its marketing efforts.
“Tourism is the number one industry in Warren County and our marketing plan always is developed with one goal in mind – to promote overnight visits to Warren County, Ohio’s largest playground,’’ said Phillip Smith, president of the visitor’s bureau.
The bureau also won a first place RUBY award in the social media campaign for its Pin It to Win It Pinterest contest.
RUBY Citation of Excellence awards went to the bureau for its 2012 annual report and 2013 marketing plan; and for promotional videos.
The bureau’s annual report was also a finalist in the delegate’s choice category.
Ohio hunters have eight new counties where they can pursue wild turkeys this season.
Ohio’s Department of Natural Resources says hunters can now harvest turkeys in Butler, Delaware, Fairfield, Franklin, Hamilton, Huron, Seneca and Warren.
The state’s wild turkey hunting season runs through Dec. 1 in 56 counties. Only one turkey of either sex can be taken over the fall period, and a turkey hunting permit is required. Hunters can use shotguns, as well as crossbows and longbows. But hunting turkeys over bait is banned.
State officials said hunters harvested more than 1,300 wild turkeys during last fall’s season. The department says the fall period draws about 10,000 hunters, not including private landowners hunting on their property.
Officials estimate Ohio’s wild turkey population to be 180,000 birds.
Miami Valley Gaming is the relocated former Lebanon Raceway that will include video slots – making it the region’s first racino. Greater Cincinnati already boasts three riverboat casinos in Southeast Indiana and the new downtown Horseshoe Casino.
“We think there’s room enough in the market to compete effectively,” Simms said during a hard hat tour for local media Tuesday. The $175 million facility is slated to open Dec. 12.
If Miami Valley is able to hit its revenue target, it would mean $40 million a year for Ohio schools. The Ohio Lottery Commission retains 33.5 percent of racino revenues, which is earmarked for education.
The latest addition means more competition gambling region. Miami Valley’s slots mean a 23 percent increase in total slots to more than 8,500 in Southwest Ohio and Southeast Indiana serving Greater Cincinnati.
Ohio’s racinos’ video slots are technically called video lottery terminals. Like slot machines the devices have a random number generator, but each is connected to a central computer system subject to regulatory supervision by the Ohio Lottery Commission.
“To shoot a movie in 15 days, that’s just off the charts,” said Nicollette Sheridan during a break late Thursday from “The Christmas Spirit.” It premieres in six weeks, at 8 p.m. Dec. 1, on the Hallmark Channel.
Actors Bart Johnson and Nicollette Sheridan rehearses a scene during the filming of The Christmas Spirit in downtown Lebanon on Monday, October 7, 2013. The film stars Nicollette Sheridan, and will air on December 1 on the Hallmark Channel. The Enquirer/Leigh Taylor
“We’re shooting nine pages (of script) a day. That is record time. It really puts pressure on everyone, including the editing and laying in the music,” said Sheridan while relaxing in her trailer with Oliver, her golden retriever also in the film.
The three-week shoot ended late Friday – or early Saturday – inside a Mechanic Street home. Most of the movie about the journalist’s ghost (Sheridan) trying to stop a developer (Bart Johnson, “High School Musical”) from ruining her picturesque hometown was filmed in or near the Warren County seat.
“We’ve been so welcomed by everybody here, especially on the side street with the houses where we’ve been shooting until 3 in the morning,” she said.
Why wait until two months before December? “The Christmas Spirit” has “happened quite quickly” since she pitched the concept last December to the Hallmark Channel, said the former “Desperate Housewives” and “Knots Landing” star.
Sheridan, also an executive producer, hooked up in January with the Motion Picture Corporation of America (“Dumb and Dumber,” “Christmas at Castlebury Hall,” “Beverly Hills Ninja”) and director Jack Angelo, who wrote the script. They didn’t start searching for locations until August.
“The Christmas Spirit” landed in Lebanon, thanks to photos and a tour by Kristen Erwin Scholtman, Greater Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky Film Commission executive director.
“When I saw the pictures (from various locations), this one was my favorite,” she said. “After Jack arrived here, he told me he found everything he needed in this wonderful town of Lebanon. It really is as I imagined it would be.”
The local crew, cast and extras were “wonderful,” she said. “The shop owners actually put up their own Christmas decorations for us. Everything just fell in place. There is something magical in the air here.”
Scholtman also provided the star with weekend diversions from her exhausting movie schedule. She attended the Bengals-Patriots game, rode motorcycles around Indian Hill and toured the haunted Dent Schoolhouse.
Sheridan, who stayed at a Downtown hotel, jogged with Oliver in the mornings or “late at night, and we felt safe anywhere we went.” She also enjoyed eating at Boca, Sotto and the Golden Lamb.
The national TV audience for “The Christmas Spirit” will see many Mulberry Street and Broadway businesses, Berry Intermediate School, the old Warren County Courthouse and several homes – as the New England town of Laurel Springs.
“You should see the outside of the Golden Lamb,” said said, “but I believe they changed the name.”
With the help of some Wisconsin snow-makers, it snowed this morning on Mulberry Street in downtown Lebanon.
The second week of filming of “The Christmas Spirit,” a Hallmark Channel movie starring Nicollette Sheridan, will begin later this morning with snow scenes on Mulberry Street, a block away from the Golden Lamb. Mulberry Street is used for Main Street in the film, which will premiere Dec. 1 on the Hallmark Channel.
A little test snow was sprayed near the corner of Mulberry and Mechanic this morning by Sturm Special Effects, the Wisconsin company brought in to spray snow. Cotton snow was rolled along the buildings and street lamps again, then wetted down to make it look like melting snow.
Scenes will be shot in the old Best Cafe on Mulberry Street and in a Christmas tree lot — yes, a Christmas tree lot — in a parking lot near Mulberry and Broadway, behind the Village Ice Cream Parlor.
Filming started last Monday with Sheridan last Monday at Deaconess Hospital. Oscar-winner Olympia Dukakis arrives this week for her scenes.
Filming wraps up in two weeks, on Friday, Oct. 11.
United Way of Warren County has published its directory of county agencies and organizations offering social services.
The Community Resource Directory is available online or in print to nonprofit organizations.
The comprehensive publication includes contact information for a variety of social programs including emergency food and shelter assistance, mental health and health services, seniors’ and veterans’ programs and youth programs, among others.