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The Good & The Bad: Toledo, Ohio

Bear Up North

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Some of you have been to Toledo. Many of you have probably skirted Toledo, via the Ohio Turnpike (east-west I-80/I90). Many have been exposed to a quick view of Toledo from a very busy I-75 (north-south), cruising into Michigan toward Greater Detroit or "snowbirds" heading south.

A number of threads in Cyburbia have mentioned Toledo....some complimentary but most often included with ramblings and rants about "rust belt cities" and the general economic conditions of much of our USA "industrial heartland".

This thread is my attempt to "fill you in".....give you the scoop on Toledo and NW Ohio.....the good, the bad, the ugly. My guess is that some of you will throw in your own comments. Bring 'em on.....

Toledo is the fourth-largest city in Ohio. Columbus, Cleveland, and Cincinnati....referred to by many in NW Ohio as the "3 C's".....seem to get all the attention, all the jobs, all the state buildings, all the "stuff" that seems to separate America's smaller metropolitan areas from the vibrant metros. Those three (3) cities are all with metros over 1,000,000. Even Dayton, smaller in population than Toledo (within the city limits) is head of a metro with just about 1,000,000.

Metro Toledo limps along with about 600,000.

But.....is "limping" so bad? The highways, although not well-designed for this century's traffic, are okay enough to usually allow you to get to any area of the metro in just a short time. Even after some really bad economic years, many Toledo area residents own their own homes. Per/capita income has certainly not kept pace with most of the American southwest or south.....but there are still many good jobs staying in this area.....paying well, helping to keep Americans in their cars and trucks (auto-parts capitol of the world).

Jeeps were born and raised in Toledo. Toledo still makes them, now in one (1) of the most efficient auto assembly plants in the world. Libbey Glass still manufactures much of the glass tableware that America wants.....when they aren't at Mickey-Macs drinking out of styrofoam cups. Toledo (and suburbs) has become an important distribution center.....location, location, location.

For years Toledo was the 3rd-largest railroad hub. Unit trains of coal, coming from southern Ohio (and West VA) coal mines, clogged the rails....all heading for what used to be the largest coal-shipping facility in the world.....located at the port of Toledo. Still busy, but not nearly as much.....a victim perhaps of stricter EPA rules that force the use of western (can you say "Wyoming"?) coal.....cleaner coal.

The main line coming out of central Toledo, heading west toward Chicago, remains one (1) of the busiest rail lines in the country. A train, on average, something like every nine (9) minutes. Some unit trains (coal) and many, many modal containers.
A western suburb, Swanton, is divided in two (2) by these busy tracks, so the State of Ohio has named building an overpass as "number 1 priority". Seems that rescue and fire runs always get stuck by trains.

In the summer, Toledo plays host to numerous festivals.....mainly ethnic excuses to dance in funny old costumes and drink a lot of beer. The Polish Festival celebrates Toledo's quite large Polish contingent. The German-American Festival is huge. A number of Hispanic festivals have sprouted. A huge Hungarian Festival takes place every August.

Toledo folks love the water. Every weekend the Maumee River (downtown Toledo is located on the banks.....the Maumee is the largest river feeding the great lakes) is packed with boats. Maumee Bay has islands with beaches and sandy bottoms. On any given summer Saturday or Sunday there will be hundreds of boats lined up at these islands, floating in water about three (3) feet deep, everybody holding a beer in their hand as they stand in the water. (Lake Erie is the warmest and the shallowest of the great lakes. It is much cleaner now than back in the early 1970's.)

More later, including WHO'S WHO FROM TOLEDO (can you say "Katie Holmes"?), BEST BARS IN GREATER TOLEDO, a snapshot of TOLEDO CULTURE, and perhaps even some mentions of Toledo's place in UNION HISTORY.

Bear

BEST BARS IN METRO TOLEDO
If you ever have to spend some time in the Toledo area, here's a few bars that I know about. There are many more, but this Bear is a creature of habit, so I keep returning to my favorite places.

LOMA LINDA's
A Mexican restaurant and bar. My wife swears by the margos. Great food. I always see people I know. Near the airport, near western suburb Swanton, on Airport Highway.

DALE'S BAR
Great sports bar in Maumee.....a southern suburb (15,000). I have been going to Dale's for nearly thirty-two (32) years. Check out the "mug club" mugs hanging on the hooks above the bar. Look at mug # 11....."Bear". (Me.) This bar is owned by an Anderson.....the Anderson's is headquartered in Maumee and is one (1) of the nation's largest grain elevator, retail store, fertilizer manufacturer conglomorates. Bill Anderson ("Grax") is a graduate of Ohio State University. This is where I go for every OSU-University of Michigan football game. I'm usually one (1) of about six (6) people in the place rooting for the Wolverines (a vicious marsupial who eats buckeye tree nuts). The other fifty (50) root for that "other" team. Fun.

FROGTOWN JOHNNY'S
Located along one (1) of the only Toledo sprawl roads, Central Avenue, west of the I-475/US 23 bypass. Dirty, loud.....and eighty (80) million televisions, all tuned to sports. I'm there every football Sunday, cheering on my Pittsburgh Steelers. Good food. Dirty bathrooms. Fun.

TURTLE CLUB
This bar is included in this list only as a memory. It has been closed for about ten (10) years. It was on the Ottawa River, a small river feeding Maumee Bay. Numerous yacht and boat clubs line this river and "the Turtle" was where everybody on a boat went to. I met my wife, Katie, at "the Turtle". (Does anybody know the correct answer to this question: "Are you a turtle?") We miss this bar.

HUB'S
Located in beautiful downtown Swanton. This looks like and comes across as a "biker bar". It's not. Just working folks, some business types (never in a suit), loose women (heh heh heh), and an old Bear and his young wife, Katie, sitting at a table, drinking in the sights. Local yokels.

.....AND AT PUT-IN-BAY.....
A number of good bars on the Lake Erie island (South Bass) that is home to the small village of Put-In-Bay. Not really metro Toledo but only about forty (40) miles east. Fun at Frosty's, The Roundhouse, The Boathouse, Beer Barrel Saloon, others, etc.

Bear
 
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fellow wolverine

Hey Bear up north!
I was in Ann Arbor for four years and had many chances to drive through Toledo but never to and within the city. After reading your reports, I think next time I visit my buddies in Ann Arbor, I will try to swing down by Toledo with my camera.
 

Super Amputee Cat

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Bear Up North said:
BEST BARS IN METRO TOLEDO
HUB'S
Located in beautiful downtown Swanton. This looks like and comes across as a "biker bar". It's not. Just working folks, some business types (never in a suit), loose women (heh heh heh), and an old Bear and his young wife, Katie, sitting at a table, drinking in the sights. Local yokels.
Is that the one on the east side of Main Street (although the bar itself faces a perpendicular street) just north of the railroad tracks? If so, I remember seeing it. There used to be a picnic table across the road and I watched trains with the kids there one night while eating bread from that pizza place across the street.
 
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BKM

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Hey Bear.

I grew up in Fort Wayne, Indiana (boy, talk about urban sprawl!). When I was growing up, I used to always enjoy trips to the Toledo Zoo, which for a metro of its size I think is one of the best in the country??? Plus, the glass in the art museum is great. And, I love river cities, so the Maumee is pretty cool.
 

pete-rock

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Hey Bear:

I've always wondered why Toledo didn't grow more during the Industrial Period than it did. Toledo always seemed to me to be ideally positioned geographically (using 19th Century thinking) for major city development. With the Maumee River and Lake Erie, it's got a better natural harbor than Detroit or Cleveland; it had the same kind of access to agricultural hinterlands that Chicago enjoyed.

Was Toledo slower than other cities to latch onto the railroads?
 

Super Amputee Cat

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pete-rock said:
Hey Bear:

I've always wondered why Toledo didn't grow more during the Industrial Period than it did. Toledo always seemed to me to be ideally positioned geographically (using 19th Century thinking) for major city development. With the Maumee River and Lake Erie, it's got a better natural harbor than Detroit or Cleveland; it had the same kind of access to agricultural hinterlands that Chicago enjoyed.

Was Toledo slower than other cities to latch onto the railroads?
I don't think railroads were a big factor. Quite the opposite in fact, as Toledo had many lines in place by 1900 and, as stated, was the third largest rail center in the nation. My theory about the reasons for Toledo's slow growth include that it was "landlocked" in many ways.

It's location right along the Michigan border kept the city from expanding northward. The same could be said for the southern boundary which is the Maumee River and Wood County.

During the 1930s, Oregon Township incorporated itself as a city in order to prevent Toledo from annexing parts of it, thus stopping the city's eastward expansion. (All of East Toledo used to be part of Oregon and the city had been slowly chipping away at the township since the 1850s.)

That left just the west and southwest. Toledo managed to annex almost two whole townships (Adams and Washington) as well as parts of Sylvania Township during the 1950s and 1960s, and and as a result was one of the few rust belt cities to gain population during the 1960s (even though it's core neighborhoods lost thousands to urban renewal, white flight, and expressway construction). But by this time, anti-Toledo sentiments had become well intrenched in the suburban areas and many took steps to prevent further annexation.

Toledo has not annexed any significant land since 1968. Attempts to annex large parts of another township in the southwest during the 1980s were not sucessful.
 
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Bear Up North

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Pete-Rock: I believe that Cat's analysis is pretty good. Toledo was landlocked.
I would add that Toledo has long carried a union history....perhaps a union "mentality". As right-to-work southern states started grabbing the jobs in the 1970's and later the industrial base that WAS Toledo withered. I would also add that corporate restructuring and mergers changed the white collar base that Toledo was long proud of.

At one (1) time T-Town was home to a significant number of Fortune 500 companies. Only a couple remain.

Kind of interesting school district issue in The Glass City:

When Washington Township was annexed (with a local school district that included about 10 elementary schools, a couple junior highs, and one of Ohio's largest high schools) the city annexed all but a very small portion of the township. Evidently, this allowed the Washington Local School District to remain separate from the Toledo School District. Almost everybody in this district lives within the corporate limits of Toledo. (My high school.....Whitmer.)

Cat: Yes, that is the bar, across from the tracks. In fact, heading there right now for a few TGIF drinks.

BKM: Toledo is just a larger version of Fort Wayne.....except our Indiana metro seems so much more alive. The Toledo Zoo is great, as is the museum. Fort Wayne has a great zoo for kids. Took my older granddaughter there a few years ago. It was fun.

Bear Heading For Hub's
 

BKM

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Bear Up North said:
BKM: Toledo is just a larger version of Fort Wayne.....except our Indiana metro seems so much more alive. The Toledo Zoo is great, as is the museum. Fort Wayne has a great zoo for kids. Took my older granddaughter there a few years ago. It was fun.

Bear Heading For Hub's
My impression is that Fort Wayne has overall remained more prosperous than Toledo. The economic base is more diverse-we had a huge military electronics sector during the 1980s and 90s (Magnavox Defense Systems at one point employed over 6,000 people-including a lot of highly paid engineers). It is not landlocked, either, in the sense that it has no real incorporated suburbs (except for a little farm town on the less desirable east side). Housing, parks, and schools are cheaper and generally better than California.

On the other hand, downtown Fort Wayne is pretty darn sad, despite the surface glitz of a few nice office buildings and a park at the confluence of the rivers. It has also suffered from the centralization of the American economy. There were once five local banks. I don't think there is a single one left (Its wierd to see Wells Fargo, a San Francisco/Minneapolis bank, branches in my hometown.). The economy has a lot of small firms, but in the era of cheap Chinese manufacturing, can they survive? Fort Wayne will always be my "hometown," but I love California, despite its many problems.
 

Dan

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A Toledo question I was dontemplating today ...

Many metropolitan areas in the United States crioss state, or even national boundaries; Kansas City, Jacksonville, Charlotte, San Diego, Chicago, and New York among many others.

Even though Toledo is located immediately south of the Ohio/Michigan boundary, the urbanized area just stops at the state line. Head north of the Michigan boundary, and there's ... nothing. The sprawl just stops. Even South Bend sprawls into Michigan, but it seems as if the Michigan state line forms a Berlin Wall-like barrier in Toledo. Why?
 

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Super Amputee Cat

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Dan said:
A Toledo question I was dontemplating today ...

Even though Toledo is located immediately south of the Ohio/Michigan boundary, the urbanized area just stops at the state line. Head north of the Michigan boundary, and there's ... nothing. The sprawl just stops. Even South Bend sprawls into Michigan, but it seems as if the Michigan state line forms a Berlin Wall-like barrier in Toledo. Why?
Actually this is really no longer the case. The map you have posted is almost 20 years old and a lot has taken place since then.

94Boundary1.jpg

At some point, Bedford Township, which is immediately to the north of Toledo, started getting city water and since then there has been an orgy of residential subdividing, commercial sprawl, traffic congestion and all the attending decrease in of quality of life. Schools are overcrowded, and since there is relatively little industry, infrastructure and municipal services are strained. I read somewhere that Bedford Township is now the largest suburb of Toledo (I'll post some stats later.)

But I don't need statistics to tell me how bad it's getting, I have seen it for myself. Just try driving down some of the east-west roads just north of the state line.

Bedford Township is argueably one of the worst cases of sprawl in the northwest Ohio/Southeast Michigan region. Unlike other townships, like Sylvania, and cities like Oregon, it has no real established pre-War neighborhoods so other than a few old farms, which are rapidly disappearing, there is very little late 19th/early 20th Century charm to be found. I'm willing to argue that 70% of what you see there has been built in the last 20 years, with the vast majority of that less than 10 years old. Indeed Bedford Township, at least the southern part, is the poster child for every type of backward, wasteful Postwar planning ideology imagineable. And this is jsut the beginning.

Immediately to the west of Bedford Township, are Whiteford and Riga Townships, which run along the border of northwest Toledo and Sylvania. Here, your comments about the sprawl just stopping at the state line are more or less still true. It's all because there is no city water available for large sections of these townships, and houses are serviced by wells and cesspool systems. There is some new construction, but it tends to be on lots of 5 acres or more. The wall-to-wall sprawl of Sylvania literally stops dead at the state line.

But how much longer? How much time before greedy developers and real estate agents grease up the local politicians to the point that the water lines start being built and all the creeping crud development that forms in its wake? It's a double edged sword: As wells dry up from lower water tables due to all the mindless sprawl, so increases the demand for city water, and thus opening the door for rampant development not too far down the road.
 
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Bear Up North

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Again, Super Amputee Cat has a good feel for the Toledo area. I had also heard that Bedford Township is Toledo's largest suburb. (Toledo is unusual in that it has very few suburbs and all of them are quite small.....population-wise.)

The east-west roads thru Bedford are horrible. I stay away from them. It's actually easier going into Toledo and going east-west on Alexis Road or digging even deeper into the city and using the x-way.

There is a small industrial grouping on the eastern edge of the Bedford area. Some factories producing auto parts, etc., have spring-up near north-south Detroit Avenue and north-south Telegraph Road.

On the west, Cat's comment about development literally stopping at the state line is right on the mark. If you go north in Sylvania Township on Centennial Road you can literally see the state line.....all the houses are in Ohio.

Bear

STUFF THAT'S NO LONGER IN TOLEDO

Ahh, yes....the times they do change. Living in the Toledo metro (if you can count rural Henry County, 35 miles away) all of my life gave me a "bear's eye-view" of stuff that WAS in Toledo but has since long gone.....

CHAMPION SPARK PLUG
Once the world's number one spark plug manufacturer, the world HQ was in Toledo, crammed into a really old neighborhood on a side street. Next to the HQ was a huge tall factory. Champion also had a newer facility in an industrial park in the north end. Purchased by Cooper Industries years ago....the manufacturing and the HQ all went bye-bye.

TOLEDO SCALE
Once the most-visible advertisement for Toledo......remember, you yung'ens....mechanical scales were the "deal" forever.....until electronics and computer chips and digital read-outs changed everything. Watch an old movie and you may see a Toledo Scale. Purchased by a Columbus, OH, company, and moved to the cap city. Bye-bye.

BUCKEYE BEER
An old north end brewery. Seems that everybody in T-Town bought Buckeye but they couldn't give it away anyplace else. Gone in the late 1960's, if my old memory is serving me correctly. (Yes, this Wolverine had more than a few "Buckeye" beers.)

THE DOWNTOWN FEEDER (RIVERFRONT) EXPRESSWAY
Including this one (1), even though it never happened. Original plans were for the riverfront of Toledo to have an expressway, feeding downtown streets. This x-way was planned to go from I-75 to I-280. They even built I-75 with the interchange included. But.....local groups (ah, the power of local groups) fought the plan and pushed for the establishment of a riverfront park. It happened.....and, the park areas along the river in Toledo are really quite nice. These grassy and terraced areas have been host to events, festivals, concerts, beer-drinking parties, etc.

PORTSIDE MARKETPLACE
A Rouse developed festival marketplace, beautifully constructed, integrated into downtown and the riverfront. Great idea.....IN SOMEPLACE WARM THAT HAS TOURISTS !!! Total flop. Closed after a couple years. Re-designed, quite effectively, as the Toledo COSI (Center for Science & Industry) Museum.

DOWNTOWN TOLEDO SHOPPING
When I was a little Bear, mid-1950's, my younger brother and I would hop on a bus (with Mama Bear) and go shopping in downtown Toledo. This was the only place to shop. Sears, Lamson's, LaSalle's, Tiedke's, Lion Store....and blocks and blocks of little stores. Toledo even tried, for a couple years, pedestrian malls, with a major street closed to traffic.....but it only was for a couple years. Sear's built a stand-alone store in the "new" (about 1961) suburban shopping center (Westgate) and closed the downtown store. Lamson's closed. LaSalle's was purchased by somebody else (can't remember), tried a suburban store, and died. Lion Store closed up shop in downtown but built a number of suburban stores. They were eventually gobbled-up by a larger chain. Tiedke's burnt to the ground and died a slow death owned by Federal (in a small shopping center that never made it.)

(One of the reasons I enjoy downtown Chicago's Marshall Field store is that it reminds me so much of my youth in downtown Toledo.)

DOWNTOWN TOLEDO THEATERS
There were no huge cineplexes in the mid-1950's. Downtown Toledo was where you went to see a movie. Rivoli, Pantheon, Paramount, Valentine, Royal, Loop, and others. The Valentine did come back.....refurbished a few years ago and is now the "premier" venue for some classy Toledo events. (Still financially struggling, though.)

FOOD TOWN
Including this example because it highlights the rise and fall of a family business. This chain of food stores, all through the 60's, 70's, 80's and early 90's became the dominant player in selling groceries in NW Ohio....especially Toledo. With about thirty (30) stores, a number of huge distribution centers, a concept drug store idea.....Seaway Foodtown was at the top of the heap. They eventually sold to a Grand Rapids, MI, grocery distributor.....a company that had very little retail grocery experience. A few years later all of the stores are gone. Many are just empty shells, littering Toledo's main thoroughfares....some were purchased by an agressive Kroger Corp. (Foodtown was, for years, a very major benefactor in the Toledo area. All of that community support is gone.)

BRAIN DRAIN
Finally, can't forget to mention recent University of Toledo studies showing that a significant number of UT graduates move away from Toledo. Color that perceptions, climate (weather and economic), blue-collar mentality, the call of the south and southwest cities.

Bear
 
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cnyOntario

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Toledo is a lot like Syracuse. Both are stagnant, mid-sized metros over-shadowed by larger metros in the State. Both also have a lot of potential if their respective economy ever improves.

Pics I took of Toledo on my recent Midwest trip





Toledo's suburban housing construction is booming compared to Syracuse's. (Isn't everyone's)

 

Dan

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Billboard row ... yuk.

I think most of Toledo's suburbs, excepting Oregon, are towships, which have limited planning and zoning powers under Ohio law. Townships in Ohio can only do what state statutes permit, as opposed to incorporated cities and villages, which have much more freedom to implement innovative planning policies. Townships throughout Ohio are reluctent to impose tough design regulations, fearing that they'll run afoul of state law.

You know how many billboards I pass on my 27 mile drive to work? One if I take I-90; none if I go along the lake. Then again, I only pass through one township, and development there consists almost entirely of high-end single family houses.

The majority of Cleveland's suburbs are incorporated cities and townships. Drive around, and you'll be surprised at the quality of new development arond here. Sure, it's sprawl, but it's the knder, gentler sprawl that one encounters in suburban Denver or Phoenix, with retail uses bearing small signs, lots of landscaping, and decent architectural design. There's ugly overhead utility lines, but even blue-collar 'burbs like Euclid and Parma have tough sign regulations..
 

BKM

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Off Topic Sign rant: Well, we try to have tough design regulations, but we are dealing with awful California construction standards. We have some nice projects (better than my town of residence for new construction, imo) But, my employer is located at a chokepoint for the regional freeway netwrok, and we have allowed this vast collection of fast food junk to crop up southwest of the main town (at the end of a cherrystem annexation). Thus, my employer has a veritable forest of freeway pole signs.
 

BKM

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Dan said:
Billboard row ... yuk.

The majority of Cleveland's suburbs are incorporated cities and townships. Drive around, and you'll be surprised at the quality of new development arond here. Sure, it's sprawl, but it's the knder, gentler sprawl that one encounters in suburban Denver or Phoenix, with retail uses bearing small signs, lots of landscaping, and decent architectural design. There's ugly pverhead utility lines, but even blue-collar 'burbs like Euclid and Parma have tough sign regulations..
Its amazing what slow (relatively) regional population growth allows. They can build absolutely any piece of stucco-coated junk crammed on a tiny lot out here, and it'll sell for big bucks.
 

Bear Up North

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Toledo made the national news today, Monday, 10-11-04. Seems that we are the number one (1) market in the country for advertisements for the presidential race. We really are bombarded. You get to know each advertisement by heart.

Why Toledo?

You all know that Ohio is one (1) of the ......stop the presses.....as I type this another ad just came on.......now back to your normally scheduled program.....

......is one (1) of the states that will make or break the two (2) candidates. IMO, the Republicans have given up on northeastern Ohio, except for the eastern burbs; the Demoncrats have given up on central and southwestern Ohio.

That leaves T-Town as the only real battleground.

Zogby Bear
 

Bear Up North

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Toledo's street pattern is similar to Detroit's (and some other places). The downtown grid pattern has major streets extending out in different directions, much like the spokes on a wheel.

The Anthony Wayne Trail spokes off to the south. Monroe Street heads west from downtown. Cherry Street spokes to the north. Summit Street spokes north, almost northeast.

A boulevard system, a few miles from the central core, connects all of these spokes. Manhattan Boulevard goes from Summit Street to Cherry Street. North Cove Boulevard and South Cove Boulevard move from the Cherry Street area, cross Monroe Street and work their way through some significant parkland.

Parkside Boulevard works its' way from the parkland to Hill Avenue, which is just a stone's throw away from (a long throw) the Anthony Wayne Trail.

It all makes sense on a map.

Bear Waiting For The Connect With Sunset Boulevard
 

Dan

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Bear Up North said:
That leaves T-Town as the only real battleground.
[ot]What about Appalachia? The Plain Dealer is insisting that it's where the real action is at. Split evenly between Republicans and Democrats, with many elements of the conservative South (gun culture, religion, etc.), but with an economy that was hit hard in the past three and a half years. Unlike the South, Appalachian Ohio is heavily unionized.[/ot]
 

Super Amputee Cat

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Bear Up North said:
STUFF THAT'S NO LONGER IN TOLEDO

FOOD TOWN
Including this example because it highlights the rise and fall of a family business. This chain of food stores, all through the 60's, 70's, 80's and early 90's became the dominant player in selling groceries in NW Ohio....especially Toledo. With about thirty (30) stores, a number of huge distribution centers, a concept drug store idea.....Seaway Foodtown was at the top of the heap. They eventually sold to a Grand Rapids, MI, grocery distributor.....a company that had very little retail grocery experience. A few years later all of the stores are gone. Many are just empty shells, littering Toledo's main thoroughfares....some were purchased by an agressive Kroger Corp. (Foodtown was, for years, a very major benefactor in the Toledo area. All of that community support is gone.)
Funny thing about Foodtown. There is actually a Foodtown still operating in Monroe, Michigan. I realize it's not the same Foodtown but the old signage (the 1980s style big block upper case orange and white letters on the store and the orange pole signs are still there. The new owners must have retained the rights to the signage through some sort of agreement.) All the other Foodtowns I know were either closed down or converted to other names, such as Kroger, but this one still looks exactly as it did when Seaway Foodtown was in its prime in the 1980s and 1990s.

It's was almost surreal to see it and brought back a strange feeling of nostalga. For Foodtown was once so ubiquitous, so entrenced in the community, one would think that it would come out on top in Toledo's grocery store wars of the early 2000s. But it disappeared virtually overnight.

Except for this one store in Monroe which is being retained as some sort of relic, albiet one from the very recent past.
 

BKM

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Super Amputee Cat said:
Funny thing about Foodtown. There is actually a Foodtown still operating in Monroe, Michigan. I realize it's not the same Foodtown but the old signage (the 1980s style big block upper case orange and white letters on the store and the orange pole signs are still there. The new owners must have retained the rights to the signage through some sort of agreement.) All the other Foodtowns I know were either closed down or converted to other names, such as Kroger, but this one still looks exactly as it did when Seaway Foodtown was in its prime in the 1980s and 1990s.

It's was almost surreal to see it and brought back a strange feeling of nostalga. For Foodtown was once so ubiquitous, so entrenced in the community, one would think that it would come out on top in Toledo's grocery store wars of the early 2000s. But it disappeared virtually overnight.

Except for this one store in Monroe which is being retained as some sort of relic, albiet one from the very recent past.
Completely Off-Topic (old chain nostalgia)

There was a fish-and-chips shop in my hometown (Fort Wayne, Indiana) called H. Salt Esquire, Fish and Chips. Disappeared decades ago :(

Imagine my surprise when I moved out to California and found an old H. Salt franchise (still operating) on a gritty commercial strip in San Pablo (a working class East Bay suburb).
 

Super Amputee Cat

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BKM said:
Completely Off-Topic (old chain nostalgia)

There was a fish-and-chips shop in my hometown (Fort Wayne, Indiana) called H. Salt Esquire, Fish and Chips. Disappeared decades ago :(

Imagine my surprise when I moved out to California and found an old H. Salt franchise (still operating) on a gritty commercial strip in San Pablo (a working class East Bay suburb).
It seems that when a chain or franchise pulls out of a market, one kind of naturally assumes that its all gone. Out of sight, out of mind. But over the past 20 years I have found several companies that had long left Toledo, but suprised to discover them thriving elsewhere.

Gulf Oil. Pulled out of Toledo in 1983 but two years later I found stations still existing less than 30 miles away.

Hot 'N Now. A cheap hamburger chain, similar to White Castle that opened in Toledo during the late 1980s, closed down a few years later, reopened in the mid-1990s and closed down for good within a year. But in nearby Monroe, Michigan, they still exist.

Burger Chef. Moved out of Toledo during the mid-1970s, but found out that the restaurants survived as late as 1992 in some markets.

Godfathers Pizza. Had a couple of stores in Toledo, but they moved out by 1990. In my travels I have seen them in such places as Cedar City, Utah and Savannah, Georgia.

A & W Root Beer. Toledo had a couple of these drive-up restaurants until the late 1980s. Now the closest one is in Monroe, Michigan.
 

BKM

Cyburbian
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Super Amputee Cat said:
It seems that when a chain or franchise pulls out of a market, one kind of naturally assumes that its all gone. Out of sight, out of mind. But over the past 20 years I have found several companies that had long left Toledo, but suprised to discover them thriving elsewhere.

Gulf Oil. Pulled out of Toledo in 1983 but two years later I found stations still existing less than 30 miles away.

Hot 'N Now. A cheap hamburger chain, similar to White Castle that opened in Toledo during the late 1980s, closed down a few years later, reopened in the mid-1990s and closed down for good within a year. But in nearby Monroe, Michigan, they still exist.

Burger Chef. Moved out of Toledo during the mid-1970s, but found out that the restaurants survived as late as 1992 in some markets.

Godfathers Pizza. Had a couple of stores in Toledo, but they moved out by 1990. In my travels I have seen them in such places as Cedar City, Utah and Savannah, Georgia.

A & W Root Beer. Toledo had a couple of these drive-up restaurants until the late 1980s. Now the closest one is in Monroe, Michigan.
Is Monroe in some kind of time warp? THE LAND WHERE SMALL CHAINS NEVER DIE or comething? :)
 

Bear Up North

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BKM said:
Is Monroe in some kind of time warp? THE LAND WHERE SMALL CHAINS NEVER DIE or comething? :)
I believe that "Terrible" Ted Nugent, that loin-cloth wearing, gun-toting, rock and roller, was from Monroe, MI.

His original group, The Amboy Dukes, played rock and roll in Michigan.

Grand Funk Railroad, another rock bunch, also played rock and roll in Michigan. One (1) of their best tunes is "Time Machine".

It all fits.

Bear Jumping Into Your Action :8:
 

Bear Up North

Cyburbian Emeritus
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Rumpy Tunanator said:
Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't Toledo's city proper population greater than Cincinatti's (sp?)?
I think, but didn't verify with census 2000 reports, that Cinci is slightly bigger. The big difference is the metro market comparison.

Cincy's metro is probably about 1,500,000 to 2,000,000. Toledo's metro market is only about 600,000.

Toledo has very few suburbs and those very few are not very big.

Glass Not Queen Bear
 

Bear Up North

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Interesting article in The (Toledo) Blade a few days ago. It was about the townships north of Toledo, in Michigan. Bedford Township now has something like thirty (30) new subdivisions. It is Toledo's largest suburb in population, with about 32,000 folks.

The adjacent-to-the-east township, Erie, remains very slow growth because of no sewers, city water, zoning requirements, etc.

I was wandering around on a State of Michigan Education website and noticed that Bedford High School is one (1) of the largest schools in Michigan.

Back in the early 1960's my parents almost bought a house in Bedford Township, in a typical-for-that-time subdivision called Green Hills. Instead, they purchased a home in the Point Place / Shoreland area of Toledo.....a move which led to the eventual de-arrangement of this Bear's good senses.

But that's another story.

Bear In The Riviera
 

jresta

Cyburbian
Messages
1,474
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23
as a kid i had a t-shirt that read "someone in Toledo loves me."

my uncle transferred there for work and was there about 2 years or so. I don't remember much of going to visit him - just driving along the lake from the airport for what seemed like forever (i think we might've flown to Clevo or Detroit).
 
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Godfathers Pizza. Had a couple of stores in Toledo, but they moved out by 1990. In my travels I have seen them in such places as Cedar City, Utah and Savannah, Georgia.

Godfathers was founded and headquartered in Omaha. Can't wait to get home next Tuesday. :D :D :D
 

Bear Up North

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Toledo is in the news again.....

A few weeks ago, seven (7) children died in an apartment fire in Toledo. On Wednesday, 11-17-04, the mother of six (6) of the victims was indicted on felony child endangerment and involuntary manslaughter. She was not home at the time of the fire.....but she was at an adjacent apartment, something like 80-feet away.

And.....

Toledo's budget was just released and it is showing a shortfall of something like $18 million. Massive layoffs are being projected, including fire and police services.

Maybe it's just a coincidence.....but almost every week I read about a Toledo company that is closing or moving. And quite often the companies are not leaving the metro area.....they are moving to suburbs. Chances are that their employees are already living in the suburbs so there goes the tax revenues.

Bear Reading The Blade
 

Rumpy Tunanator

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Messages
4,473
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Bear Up North said:
Toledo's budget was just released and it is showing a shortfall of something like $18 million. Massive layoffs are being projected, including fire and police services.

Maybe it's just a coincidence.....but almost every week I read about a Toledo company that is closing or moving. And quite often the companies are not leaving the metro area.....they are moving to suburbs. Chances are that their employees are already living in the suburbs so there goes the tax revenues.

Bear Reading The Blade
Welcome to my world Bear, except now the county is in trouble.

Rumpy reading the Iraqi Times, I mean Buffalo snooze;)
 

Super Amputee Cat

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2,242
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Bear Up North said:
Toledo is in the news again.....

A few weeks ago, seven (7) children died in an apartment fire in Toledo. On Wednesday, 11-17-04, the mother of six (6) of the victims was indicted on felony child endangerment and involuntary manslaughter. She was not home at the time of the fire.....but she was at an adjacent apartment, something like 80-feet away.

And.....

Toledo's budget was just released and it is showing a shortfall of something like $18 million. Massive layoffs are being projected, including fire and police services.

Maybe it's just a coincidence.....but almost every week I read about a Toledo company that is closing or moving. And quite often the companies are not leaving the metro area.....they are moving to suburbs. Chances are that their employees are already living in the suburbs so there goes the tax revenues.

Bear Reading The Blade
And the bad news doesn't stop there. A recent survey put Toledo at #195 out of 200 in economic performance. Even Gary and Youngstown have moved ahead.

http://www.toledoblade.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20041118/BUSINESS06/411180433
 

Bear Up North

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The Suburbs Of Toledo

Toledo has only a few suburbs and none of those are very large in population. This seems a bit unusual for a metropolitan area that has not annexed a whole county.

Maumee is a suburb to the south of Toledo. Maumee has an interesting downtown area, with some older buildings (including Dale's Bar). The downtown area is on a hill, just up from the bridge that crosses the Maumee River, which is the largest river feeding the Great Lakes. Maumee has some major automobile parts factories and a huge office park complex (with some light manufacturing) that has a habit of luring Toledo's businesses out of T-Town and into Maumee.
Maumee also has a huge UPS Distribution Center, located adjacent to the Ohio Turnpike exit.

Oregon is a suburb to the east of Toledo. It is a large geographical city, with a significant presence right on Lake Erie. Oregon has a large number of industrial facilities, including a BMF oil refinery and huge coal-loading docks for lake boats. Oregon also has a large number of family farms, primarily growing tomatoes. This Bear worked on a tomato farm in Oregon back in 1966. (I was dating the farmer's daughter.....but that's another story.)

Sylvania is a suburb to the northwest of Toledo. Sylvania and Sylvania Township are somewhat "ritzier" suburbs of Toledo. Many new developments are here with huge houses and the smell of money. There is some manufacturing in this area, although office parks dominate. One (1) of the metros worst sprawl areas is in Sylvania Township, west of the outerbelt expressway.

Perrysburg is a suburb south and west of Toledo, across the Maumee River from Maumee. Perrysburg Township and Perrysburg are both among the fastest-growing areas of the metro and numerous retail strips have proliferated. The city of Perrysburg has a lot of interesting older homes (it is a very old community). Some manufacturing is in this area, especially in the township. The junction of
I-75 and I-80/I-90 is in Perrysburg and residents latched on to the nickname "Crossroads Of America". (Take that, Hoosiers!) There is also a quite impressive Islamic Temple that sits adjacent to I-75.....and many of you have probably noticed it when travelling that route.

Northwood is a suburb to the east and south of Toledo. It has a rather strange geographical shape.....long and skinny. It is home to numerous industries.

Rossford is a small suburb just across the Maumee River from the area of Toledo just south of downtown Toledo. At one (1) time it was the home of the largest plate glass factory in the world.....but a changing world economy and industrial consolidation changed all of that. Rossford has a very large number of Polish descendants living in the central portion of town.

Bedford Township, Michigan, is located north of Toledo, and includes the villages of Temperance and Lambertville. As mentioned in other posts and threads, this area is a planner's nightmare......two-lane roads clogged with traffic, coming and going from thousands of newer homes in newer subdivsions. Sprawl, USA.

Monclova Township, Waterville, Whitehouse......these communities are located just southwest of Maumee. Waterville is on the river, floods all the time, and is one (1) of the oldest communities in this area. Lots of newer subdivisions ring this community. Just down the road is Whitehouse, another older town that is now surrounded by thousands of new homes. It is also adjacent to the beautiful Maumee State Forest and the wonderful metropark, Oak Openings. The township land around these communities is Monclova Township.

Bedford Township is about 32,000 people. The Sylvania area, Oregon, Maumee, and the Perrysburg area are each around 15,000. Northwood might be 7000.
Rossford might be 5000. My guess is that all the new construction in Monclova, Waterville, and Whitehouse have that area in the 15,000 range.

That's about it for Toledo's suburbs. Which goes a long way in explaining why the city of Toledo is ranked a whole lot higher in population stats than the metro Toledo area. (Dayton is a lot smaller than Toledo but their metro is about
1,000,000. Toledo's metro is about 600,000.)

Bear
 

pete-rock

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You know, Bear, there's this college football game taking place in Columbus tomorrow ;)

I've always seen the Toledo area as being possibly the most evenly split area between Michigan and Ohio State fans. I'm originally from Detroit, which is pretty much U-M and MSU territory for big-time college sports fans. South of Toledo, Ohio State seems to become much more dominant. Many U-M students and football players come from the Toledo area (and all of northern Ohio), and I'm sure THE Ohio State University has plenty of alums in the area too.

Is Toledo the place where another kind of blue (Michigan) and red (Ohio State) battle takes place each year?
 

Bear Up North

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pete-rock said:
You know, Bear, there's this college football game taking place in Columbus tomorrow ;)

I've always seen the Toledo area as being possibly the most evenly split area between Michigan and Ohio State fans. I'm originally from Detroit, which is pretty much U-M and MSU territory for big-time college sports fans. South of Toledo, Ohio State seems to become much more dominant. Many U-M students and football players come from the Toledo area (and all of northern Ohio), and I'm sure THE Ohio State University has plenty of alums in the area too.

Is Toledo the place where another kind of blue (Michigan) and red (Ohio State) battle takes place each year?
Toledo is the real battleground for the Wolverine - Buckeye clash. There are even retail stores in town (Buckeye/Wolverine Shop) that just sell items from those two (2) schools and they have a big line painted down the center of their stores.

My wife (Katie) is a big fan of the Buckeyes, as is my step-son. Of course, this Bear is a Wolverine fan, as is my son and my oldest granddaughter. We should paint a line down the center of our living room, heh?

In about thirty (30) minutes (today is Saturday) I will leave for Dale's Bar, in the Toledo suburb of Maumee. Dale's is owned by an OSU graduate (Grax Anderson) and the place will be filled with about one-hundred (100) Buckeye fans and about five (5) Michigan fans. That's the way we like it!

Local television stations usually are at Dale's Bar, filming and interviewing. They interviewed me a couple years ago but it wasn't put on the tube. I probably growled my famous "Wolverine Growl" one (1) too many times.

The rivalry betweent he states actually spills into everyday conversations, all year long. Many Ohio residents in the Toledo area don't understand why we would be fans of Michigan. Of course, my Cyburbian headgear comes on when I respond with comments such as, "NW Ohio has always been geographically, economically, and somewhat politically more in-tune with the state of Michigan. This part of Ohio was actually originally part of Michigan. Toledo is ignored by the state of Ohio, with their coddling of Columbus, Cincinnati, and Cleveland."

Off to the game! Go Blue!

Bear With The Wolverine Shirt With Growling Teeth
 

Super Amputee Cat

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Messages
2,242
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Bear Up North said:
Many Ohio residents in the Toledo area don't understand why we would be fans of Michigan. Of course, my Cyburbian headgear comes on when I respond with comments such as, "NW Ohio has always been geographically, economically, and somewhat politically more in-tune with the state of Michigan. This part of Ohio was actually originally part of Michigan. Toledo is ignored by the state of Ohio, with their coddling of Columbus, Cincinnati, and Cleveland."
This sums it all up right here. As far as those fatcat Columbus politicians are concerned, Toledo is part of Michigan. If they even think about Toledo at all.

As I stated in an earlier post, I think Toledo would have been a much more prosperous city, politically, economically, strategically, had it been part of Michigan.
 

Bear Up North

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In The (Toledo) Blade on Sunday, 11-21-04, a local columnist, Russ Lemmons, says that the only way Toledo can improve it's economic lot is to get to work building an arena. Over the last few years, locals have been discussing a new arena, to replace the aging and fugly Sports Arena.

Some folks think it should be along the river, on the east side, in a district that has been on the draw-boards for a number of years called The Marina District. The present Sports Arena is in that area.

Others argue that the arena should be on the downtown side of the river, adjacent to the new Fifth Third Field baseball stadium that has been a huge success.

And then the argument spills into how it should be paid for.

Sports and multi-use facilities have been built all over this land of ours. What is Cyburbia's take on public dollars being involved?

Bear Watching The Hornets
 

BKM

Cyburbian
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Bear Up North said:
In The (Toledo) Blade on Sunday, 11-21-04, a local columnist, Russ Lemmons, says that the only way Toledo can improve it's economic lot is to get to work building an arena. Over the last few years, locals have been discussing a new arena, to replace the aging and fugly Sports Arena.

Some folks think it should be along the river, on the east side, in a district that has been on the draw-boards for a number of years called The Marina District. The present Sports Arena is in that area.

Others argue that the arena should be on the downtown side of the river, adjacent to the new Fifth Third Field baseball stadium that has been a huge success.

And then the argument spills into how it should be paid for.

Sports and multi-use facilities have been built all over this land of ours. What is Cyburbia's take on public dollars being involved?

Bear Watching The Hornets
As a vocal atheist when it comes to America's true religion (professional sports) I would be extremely skeptical that a new arena would significantly impact Toledo's economy in any real way. Many objective studies debunk the myth that sports stadia are economic solutions in any real sense. Of course, there may be exceptions, the Denver stadium helped LoDo. Still, aren't Toledo's probelms more deeply rooted? Isn't another damn arena just the 2000's "Portside" (albeit, it will be at least somewhat more useful to the residents than teddy bear shoppes!)
 

Bear Up North

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The Port Of Toledo

Toledo used to be the 9th largest port in the United States and the largest port on the Great Lakes (in terms of tonnage). The reason for this high ranking was the huge coal-loading facilities located at the mouth of the Maumee River AND the bevy of huge grain elevators located along the river.

The coal, from southern Ohio and West Viriginia, shipped out of Toledo is bound for electrical generating plants around the Great Lakes. Less coal is shipped now because of environmental considerations that require coal-fired plants to use cleaner coal.....and that coal comes by rail to those plants from places like Wyoming and Montana.

In the last twenty (20) years, at least one (1) major grain elevator along the river has ceased operations.

The general cargo portion of the port used to be the only Foriegn Trade Zone on the Great Lakes......but that changed quite a few years ago. General cargo in and out of Toledo tends to be primarily ocean freight.

The old Toledo Shipyards are being retrofitted. They will be building and refurbishing the big lake boats, bringing a number of higher-paying jobs back to the Toledo economy.

American Shipbuilding used to have a plant in Toledo, owned by George Steinbrenner (of the dreaded NY Yankees). It closed quite a few years ago.

Finally.....probably the most significant import to the Great Lakes (and the Port of Toledo) via the St. Lawerence Seaway has been the zebra mussell. This pesky little snail now litters all of the previously sandy beaches of Lake Erie. But boy did it clean up the water. Wow.

Bear @ The Outer Harbor Light
 

BKM

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Bear Up North said:
the zebra mussell. This pesky little snail now litters all of the previously sandy beaches of Lake Erie. But boy did it clean up the water. Wow.

Bear @ The Outer Harbor Light
I've heard of this little beasty. Is it one of the major factors in Lake clean-up? Wow.
 

Trinity Moses

Member
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229
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9
I was up in Toeldo about 10 or 11 years ago just to check out the place, drive around town. Stayed overnight at a hotel donwtown next to that Seagate convention center.

Toledo seemed kind of bland to me compared to Dayton (which is pretty bland to begin with), in some ways Toledo is a bit like Akron.

I did think it was neat that a latino barrio was developing on Broadway, south of downtown, and that there was still an old Polish neighborhood on Lagrange Avenue.

But there was no entertainment or live music venues in town like one finds in Daytons Oregon district, or like Canal Street Tavern or Gillys....at least none I could find out about...

As for a new stadium, it might be a good idea as a simple urban amenity for local folks. The new minor league stadium in Akron is a good addition to their downtown, and the one in Dayton is quite popular too..both of these follow the "Camden Yards" model of inserting the stadium into the urban streetscape or context, not a big mega-arena surrounded by parking, like those major league stadiums

The Akron and Dayton stadiums are just ways of bringing people downtown in hopes they might stay and spend some $$$ at a restraunt or bar after the game. They won't do any more than that. They should be looked at like a park or a zoo, a recreational amentity for the locals, not as some economic developement engine.
 

Trinity Moses

Member
Messages
229
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9
(Dayton is a lot smaller than Toledo but their metro is about
1,000,000. Toledo's metro is about 600,000.)
.

The Dayton MSA stats are somewhat misleading as they include Springfield and the surrounding Clark County. Springfield is a small industrial city of 70,000 or so (not sure how big Clark County is), and is actually fairly seperate from Dayton. I guess there is overlapping commuting hence the inclusion of both in one MSA.
 

mgk920

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Messages
4,202
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26
BKM said:
I've heard of this little beasty. Is it one of the major factors in Lake clean-up? Wow.
Those little buggers have a VEROCIOUS appetite for alga and plankton, with major worries that they are eating the base food that all of the other more 'native' North American freshwater species depend on. It is true, that appetite is responsible for a major upturn in water clarity.

The shells of the dead ones (they are about the size of thumbnails) make a delicate 'tinkling' sound, much like small glass dishes, when walked on and kicked around on beaches.

Highly prolific and native to southern Europe, it is believed that they arrived in the Great Lakes in the 1980s in the ballast water of a European freighter. MANY other 'invasive' European species are belived to have arrived here the same way and ships are now required to dump and replace their ballast water before entering the Saint Lawrence River.

Mike
 

Bear Up North

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Toledo Area Metroparks

The metro parks in the Toledo area are actually quite nice. Paid for with "our tax dollars at use" (if you live in Lucas County), these attractive parks are no-fee preserves, reservations, parks, etc.

The park I consider the "jewel" is Oak Openings Preserve. It is a huge park.....so big in fact that a 17-mile hiking trail virtually circles the park. It has small ponds for kids to fish in, plenty of nature trails, and a small lake (with some bass, etc. just swimming around waiting for a hook). The park includes "moving" sand dunes and a herd of deer that has been estimated at over one hundred (100). If you look hard enough you will also see signs of the badgers that inhabit this park.

Pearson Park is a smaller facility, located in the eastern suburb of Oregon. It is a popular place for softball, soccer, ice skating, kid's fishing, and running. Years ago they used to allow cars to park there at night for a little "snuggly action". This Bear, a 1959 Desoto, a young lady named Jennifer......but that's another story.

Wildwood Preserve is located right in west Toledo, on the site of an estate that was built by an auto parts magnate (from Champion Spark Plug). The original mansion is preserved, open for tours, and dresses for the holidays in it's Christmas best. This park is very popular because of its' location and the many hiking (and running) trails that go through the Ottawa River lowlands that are down the hill from the mansion. This park also has quite a few deer.

Swan Creek Preserve is located in south Toledo. Nice big park with lots of hiking trails. Very popular for long-distance runners.

In southwestern suburban Waterville is Farnswork Metropark. This park is located along the Maumee River. A hiking trail.....along an old canal boat towpath.....will get you from Farnsworth to Providence Metropark.....about ten (10) miles southwest. During the hike (or run) you will follow the old canal, which is adjacent to the river and was used because of the river's rapids. About half way between Farnsworth and Providence is Bend View Park.....accessible only via the towpath trail. Good views of the winding Maumee River here.

Providence Metropark, located across the river from Grand Rapids, OH.....a tourist type of town.....has a restored canalboat. Folks in period costumes will take you down a portion of the canal in the same manner they did it more than a century ago.

There are some other metroparks not mentioned here. The entire system is well-manicured where it needs to be, well-patrolled where it has to be, and kept in a wooded virgin state in many places, as it used to be.

If you are ever in the Toledo area, check them out. You could also do a GOOGLE and check out their website.

Bear On The Orange Trail Pretending He's Doctor Zhivago Going Thru The Woods
 

Bear Up North

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More of the same news.....

Toledo is about to lose its' best independent bookstore, Thackeray's, located in the Westgate Shopping Center. Thackeray's had been around for about twenty-five (25) years and was a great place to look for, browse, sit and read, etc.

Like many independents stores, they saw their sales (and bottom line) get smaller every year. The culprits....we all know them.....big boxes such as Borders and the internet.

Thackeray's was actually using Border's logistics arm to stock their shelves. But Borders (an Ann Arbor, MI, based company) told them that they HAD to open Toledo's first Border's store, in an expanding regional (giant) mall in west Toledo.

I was a frequent customer of Thackeray's and I will miss it. I tried the Barnes and Nobel giant store (across from that same giant mall) and felt lost and unsatisfied.
The Toledo area has only one (1) independent bookstore left.

Bear In The Map Aisle
 

Bear Up North

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Downtown Toledo used to be the home of major corporations. Most of those corporations are now gone or merged into others (and then gone). Toledo has a skyscraper (classic style, 1930's, about 26-stories) that was the home of Owens-Illinois Corporation, a huge manufacturer of glass products. In the early 1980's, O-I built a new glass tower (about 31-stories) along the river.

However, they were partners in mergers and changes and over the years their administrative staffing in downtown Toledo shrunk significantly. Their lease is up, next year, on the building. They are openly talking about leaving downtown Toledo. Probably relocation point is in a suburb, Perrysburg. They already have more employees in a campus setting in P'Burg, then they do in downtown Toledo.

Owens-Corning Fiberglass Corporation (think Pink Panther and insulation products) is still in downtown Toledo. But they too abandoned their 30-story (guess) skycraper and built a low-rise campus-setting HQ on the Maumee River, in the southern portion of downtown. The old building is empty, creating very high office vacancy rates in downtown.

Libbey-Owens-Ford also had a Toledo skyscraper, maybe about 16-stories. Mergers made them go away and that building is now going to be used by a local insurance company that is one (1) of the largest underwriters in the country.

Anybody need to lease some Class A office space?

Bear On Madison
 

Bear Up North

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Toledo Contributes To The Dead Mall Pile

Toledo's North Towne Square Mall, opened in the 1980's, closed its' door this weekend. Only a few stores remained. No anchor stores have been at this mall for awhile.

North Towne, located in north-central Toledo, near the Michigan line, became the destination for many residents of north Toledo, Point Place, and the suburban areas of Michigan. Before North Towne these folks had to truck across town to the giant (and still-growing) Franklin Park (now Westfield Shoppingtown) or cross the river and drive to suburban Northwood's Woodville Mall.

Daimler-Chrysler has a huge Jeep assembly plant nearby and is now renting the parking lot of the dead mall to store overstock (over-produced) vehicles.

Retail.....gotta love it.

Bear At the Old Airport
 

BKM

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Bear Up North said:
. Before North Towne these folks had to truck across town to the giant (and still-growing) Franklin Park (now Westfield Shoppingtown) or cross the river and drive to suburban Northwood's Woodville Mall.
.

Bear At the Old Airport
Don't you just hate that term "Shoppingtowne" It just grates on me.

Fort Wayne's "Southtown Mall" has been dead for yearas now. Proposals have included a giant flea market :)

When I was growing up decades ago, Southtown was still prosperous (but even then, you could see the trend of northside dominance. Now, the posh southwestern suburbs have their own new slice of suburban California, so ther's no need for a mall in the declining (read "minority" southeast side)
 

Bear Up North

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BKM said:
Don't you just hate that term "Shoppingtowne" It just grates on me.

Fort Wayne's "Southtown Mall" has been dead for yearas now. Proposals have included a giant flea market :)

When I was growing up decades ago, Southtown was still prosperous (but even then, you could see the trend of northside dominance. Now, the posh southwestern suburbs have their own new slice of suburban California, so ther's no need for a mall in the declining (read "minority" southeast side)
When I lived in henry County we used to travel to the big mall in Fort Wayne. It had an ice skating rink in the center. My oldest granddaughter loved going there with us.....she was about three (3) or four (4) and was just learning to skate.

The last time I was there the rink was gone, replaced by a food court. If I remember correctly, this mall was on Coliseum Boulevard.

Bear Komet
 

BKM

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Bear Up North said:
When I lived in henry County we used to travel to the big mall in Fort Wayne. It had an ice skating rink in the center. My oldest granddaughter loved going there with us.....she was about three (3) or four (4) and was just learning to skate.

The last time I was there the rink was gone, replaced by a food court. If I remember correctly, this mall was on Coliseum Boulevard.

Bear Komet

Yep: Glenbrook Mall, the winner in the mall wars in Fort Wayne. Although that very new, posh outdoor mall way out on Jefferson Blvd.southwest is giving it competition (Jefferson Pointe, with an "e," is what it's called, I believe :()

Coliseum Blvd. proves the small "c" conservative contention that not all change is progress. Downtown Fort Wayne, with a multitude of locally owned businesses, including grand old department stores, was pre-suburban death knell qualitatively SUPERIOR in almost every respect to the horrific "architectural asteroid belt" that has grown like a fungus along Coliseum Blvd. (and now along Jefferson Blvd. southwest). Fort Wayne lost a lot when it rushed headlong into the suburban dream. And, as the city has relatively minimal design or planning regulations, I can't say "zoning" caused this tragedy. And, driving along Coliseum Blvd, it is a tragedy. Coliseum Blvd. inspir3ed me to be a planner. (Not that I have any illusions of changing the world wholesale any more)>
 
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