2012 the year in review


November: Big turnout for election


Everyone wondered how the traveling voting centers would work here in Switzerland County, and it November’s general election was any gauge, things went just fine.

Over 50-percent of Switzerland County voters went to the polls for the 2012 election, which was held at traveling centers over a two-week period. Local winners included: John Haskell and Steve Lyons for County Commissioner; Steve Crabtree, Rachel Schuler, and Terry Hall for County Council; Vickie James for County Treasurer; Brian McAllister for County Surveyor; Lewis Fritter for County Coroner; and Darla McAlister for County Recorder.

In School Board races: Tammy Hayes was elected in Pleasant Township; Wayne Daugherty in the town of Vevay; Bill Roberts in Cotton Township; and Josh Deck in York Township.


Here’s what else we were talking about in the month of November:

– A special program honoring Vietnam Veterans was held on Veterans Day in the Switzerland County High School gym. Coordinated by Rita Sullivan and a band of volunteers, the event was designed to honor the service of those men and women who served during the Vietnam era. The U.S. Department of Defense proclaimed 2012 as an official time to commemorate the war, on the 50th anniversary of it starting.

– Switzerland County Schools received ‘grades’ from the Indiana Department of Education; but the state formula in calculating how the grades were determined was so confusing that it left more questions than answers.

– In the Taterbug 30 Ultramarathon race, the local relay team of Trisha Archer, Katie Collier, Lance Collier, Kacey Sullivan, Adam Archer, and Cassie Courtney won the relay portion of the race.

– Eugene Smith, Tuskegee Airman and county resident, passes away at age 94.

– Students at Switzerland County Middle School were “fueling up to Play 60” and developing good eating habits.

– Jennifer Johnson, senior at Switzerland County High School, has been selected to perform in the American High School Honors Performance Series, and will perform in Carnegie Hall in New York City in February.

- The Switzerland County School Board officially approved the development of a tackle football program.

– Cindi Wagner was honored with the “2012 Hope in Heels Foundation Award” as the outstanding child protection worker/investigator. She works for Switzerland County Department of Child Services.

– Bobby Joe Williamson, a Vevay native who gave his life as a hero in Vietnam, is being remembered by his classmates.

– A new WorkOne Employment and job training office opened in the new Switzerland County Technology and Education Center, which is located on Seminary Street in Vevay.

December: Vevay Hill is open!


The big story in Switzerland County in the month of December was the reopening of State Road 56 just north of Vevay – commonly known as “Vevay Hill” to folks here.

The hill, which is the primary north-south access point bringing people into and out of Vevay, was closed to all traffic in early April while the Indiana Department of Transportation and Force Construction fixed the roadway.

The project involved reinforcing the roadway on the south side, eliminating the slips that have caused the roadway to be perilous for drivers in the past. A series of piers were poured on the south side of the road, with panels being placed behind those piers and then backfilled.

The result was that the road is wider, smoother, and more safe than before, and the slipping issues that have caused problems in the past should not be an issue in the future.


Here’s what else we were talking about in the month of December:

– Switzerland County junior Chase Ritch tied the school record when he made nine three-pointers in a game against Trinity Lutheran. His hot shooting tied a mark set by Michael Gault, who was in attendance at the game.

– Vevay Newspapers editor and general manager Patrick Lanman earned the “Charlie Biggs Commitment to Community” award from the Hoosier State Press Association. The HSPA represents 172 newspapers in Indiana.

– The History Committee for the Vevay Bicentennial 2013 announced that it was selling a limited edition calendar as a fundraiser for its Chautauqua. The organizing committee also announced its “Founding Funders” campaign.

– Vevay Main Street held the first Christmas Parade that has been held in town in decades. The parade ended in the Paul Ogle Riverfront Park, where Switzerland County Tourism had decorated the entire park with lighted displays for the Christmas season.

– The Florence Regional Sewer District was honored as the “Plant of the Year” by the Southern Indiana Operators Association.

– Switzerland County Elementary School teacher Peggy Eckerty was honored as the “Teacher of the Year” by the Indiana Historical Society.

– Switzerland County lost a true original with the passing of Carl Bovard.

– Work got underway on the expansion of Switzerland County Elementary School, which will include five additional classrooms as well as improvements to the existing building.

- Another semi truck hauling a roll of steel turned over in the county. This one rolled over on State Road 156 just east of Vevay. The driver sustained only minor injuries, but the wreck caused traffic to be stopped for some time while the accident was cleaned up.

- The residents of the Valley Apartments got an unexpected Christmas gift when ‘Milo” the cat was found and returned to owner Tony Cruz after being gone for two months.