March: Flooding returns
The month of March saw the snow melt and flood waters rise as Spring began to arrive here in Switzerland County.
Chris See was appointed as the new director of the Switzerland County Emergency Management Agency, coordinating emergency management at all emergencies in the community; dealing with the coordination of responsibilities to other duties during a disaster.
McKenna Edwards was crowned as the 2015 ‘Queen of Hearts’ after a delay in the pageant due to the February snowstorm. Macy Barwick was the first runner up; Adeli Kinne was the second runner up; Jacqueline Hensley was the third runner up; Audrey Kinne was the fourth runner up; and Mackenzie Covington was honored as Miss Congeniality.
The Switzerland County Soil and Water Conservation District announced that Robbie Works of near Fairview was its ‘Conservation Farmer of the Year’, and Eslie Alford was honored as the district’s ‘Silver Star’ award winner for his lifetime of service to the agricultural industry.
The Switzerland County Pacer boys varsity basketball team advanced to the championship game of the Sectional tournament before falling to South Ripley by a final score of 58-54. Riley Phagan and Ben Curran earned spots on the All Sectional team.
The heavy snows of February began to melt in the warmer March weather, and that caused excessive flooding in low lying areas all around the county, including completely covering the Paul Ogle Riverfront Park.
The melting snow was joined by steady rains midway through March; and that resulted in flooded roads all around the county as well as rivers and streams. Turtle Creek at Florence was over its banks; and flooding threatened vacation homes near Bryants Creek.
At the Markland Dam, lockmaster Gary Birge said that levels reached 53-feet – two feet above flood stage at the dam – before the waters began to recede.
The Switzerland County High School and Middle School archery teams earned their way to the State Meet, participating in the NASP Finals in Indianapolis.
Switzerland Masonic Lodge #122 held dedication services for its new lodge building in March, with approximately 100 people attending the service and ceremony. Vevay is the birthplace of the Masonic Lodge in Indiana, with the Armstrong Tavern being noted as the oldest known meeting building for Masons, erected in 1816.
Switzerland County resident Denise Crawford shared her journey through battling Lyme Disease, and provided tips for others who may suspect that they have the illness.
April: Rescue and expansion
The month of April saw the coordinated effort of many different agencies in the rescue of a county man from a ditch; and official approval of a plan to expand Jefferson-Craig Elementary.
The Community Foundation of Switzerland County announced that Adeli Kinne was the 2015 recipient of the Lilly Endowment Scholarship. She is the daughter of Steve and Judy Kinne, and will be attending Hanover College.
A new dimension was added to the weekly Vevay newspaper with the addition of the ‘Ohio County Rising Sun Weekly’ insertion. Edited by Tim Hillman, the weekly will highlight all of the activities going on in and around Rising Sun and Ohio County.
The annual ‘Easter Egg-Stravaganza’ filled the Paul Ogle Riverfront Park with plenty of children, laughter, Easter Eggs, and all sorts of other activities.
A regional effort was waged to extract a Switzerland County man from a ditch in Vevay. John Dunning was working on Greeley Avenue when a ditch he was working in collapsed around him, beginning a five hour effort to get him out that included county workers and firefighters; emergency personnel, and a team of emergency workers from Northern Kentucky who are specially trained for rescues like this one. Dunning was successfully removed from the ditch about 7:15 p.m. and was airlifted to a Louisville hospital.
Dylan Casey and Macy Barwick were crowned as the King and Queen of the Switzerland County High School Prom. Others in the court included: Nora Yazell, Nicole Leap, Jacqueline Hensley, Shelby Auxier; Talen Taylor, Michael Scott, Riley Phagan, and Zak Park.
Jane Jacobs, longtime publisher of The Madison Courier, passed away at the age of 69. Her family owned and operated the Vevay Newspapers here in Switzerland County for several decades.
An old photo highlighting the All Sports Champions for the Ohio River Valley Conference for the 1962-63 season for Vevay High School was discovered and framed by Ernie McKenzie. The photo was temporarily housed at the American Legion post until a more permanent location can be found.
The facilities committee of the Switzerland County School Board recommended to the full board that an expansion of Jefferson-Craig Elementary School become a ‘top priority’; and in doing so recommending foregoing to proposed athletic facility construction that had been proposed by the football field. The expansion at Jeff-Craig will include 10 classrooms, and will allow the school, which has been forced to locate some classes in the middle school, to return all of its students under one roof.
Switzerland County High School’s Kim Stout was honored as the ‘Secretary of the Year’ by the Indiana Association of School Principals. The surprise award was presented at a conference near Indianapolis, with her family in the wings waiting to surprise her for the award.
A proposal by Ivy Tech Community College would add dual enrollment classes for students at the high school. Under the proposal, students would take classes at an actual Ivy Tech facility, not just take classes at the high school that also provided college credit.