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Property owners urged to inspect coastal property for signs of erosion

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) is reminding those who own or manage property along Lake Erie that early spring is a good time to inspect coastal property for signs of erosion or damage to existing shore protection structures. Heavy wind and wave action in the fall of 2012 combined with the effects of ice, as well as freezing and thawing during the winter may damage coastal property. 

“Routine monitoring and maintenance of shore structures is necessary and will, over time, save coastal property owners money,” said Office of Coastal Management Chief Scudder Mackey. “Smaller repairs performed more frequently will be less costly than major repairs or replacement. Yearly inspections and repairs can often increase how long a structure will be effective at controlling erosion.”

The ODNR Office of Coastal Management provides free technical assistance to coastal property owners or residents who are experiencing erosion or have damaged structures. Coastal staff will guide littoral owners through the permitting process for construction of new shore structures and modifications to existing shore structures.

Safety is of the utmost importance when inspecting shore structures and should be done from a safe location. This includes keeping a safe distance from bluff edges and downslope areas where falling material may be a hazard.

It is important to document observations made during each inspection with photos and notes since this information can be helpful in comparing changes over time. Things that coastal property owners should look for include:

  • Slumped areas of the bluff including areas above a revetment, seawall or unarmored shore;
  • Increased erosion of the bluff or bank along an unarmored shore or at the ends of a structure;
  • Significant changes to the beach, either at the site or along adjacent or nearby properties;
  • Cracked concrete or armor stone;
  • Armor stone that has moved down-slope (toward the water) from its original location;
  • Uneven settling of seawalls or retaining walls;
  • Seawalls, bulkheads or retaining walls that appear to be leaning; or
  • Corrosion or ice damage to steel sheet piling or cribbing.

If erosion issues or structural damage is observed, property owners should remember:

  • Proper permits need to be obtained at the federal, state and local level prior to the construction of new structures and prior to rehabilitation or improvement of existing structures.
  • Dumping material (rubble, yard waste, etc.) adds weight to the face of the bluff and can increase erosion. Leaves and grass clippings can become saturated with water and greatly increase the weight on the bank’s slope, directly causing slumping.
  • Concrete rubble is ineffective as shore protection because individual pieces of concrete rubble are too light to withstand wave forces and are easily dispersed into the nearshore zone. Exposed rebar from broken concrete rubble is a significant public health and safety hazard along the shore.
  • Any structures (concrete decks, stone walls) and heavy objects (vehicles or construction equipment) placed near the bank edge will increase the stress within the soil and can lead to slope failure. 

When possible, coastal property owners/residents should consider working with neighboring property owners to address erosion issues. This will generally save money and produce a more effective erosion control measure.

Residents, businesses and communities are encouraged to contact ODNR with concerns or questions regarding what they have observed. To speak with an ODNR Office of Coastal Management engineer or to schedule a site visit, contact the office at 419-626-7980 or by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

In addition to in-person assistance, the ODNR Office of Coastal Management has various resources available to assist coastal property owners, including:

  • Ohio’s Coastal Design Manual (LakeErie.ohiodnr.com/design) demonstrates how structures along the shore of Lake Erie should be designed and how coastal engineering principles are best applied;
  • The Lake Erie Shore Erosion Management Plan (LakeErie.ohiodnr.com/erosion) provides recommendations to help control erosion based on site conditions; and
  • Application and guidance materials for regulatory requirements (ohiodnr.com/tabid/9281/default.aspx). 

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.

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United States Mint and National Park Service launch Memorial Quarter

Representatives from the United States Mint and the National Park Service on Saturday, April 20, will host a launch ceremony for the new America the Beautiful Quarters® Program coin honoring Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial.

The free event, which is open to the public, will take place at the Niagara Events Center, 71 Concord Ave. in the Village of Put-In-Bay at 11:30 a.m. Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur will be on hand to help celebrate the coin’s release. The event will culminate in a coin exchange, where the public can swap (at face value) their cash for $10 rolls of new quarters bearing the Perry’s Victory and International Peace Memorial design.

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Terra State presents “Resounding Brass” at PAC

Terra State Community College’s Brass Choir under the direction of Jeff Blanchard will present a concert this Friday, April 19, at Port Clinton's Performing Arts Center, 811 S. Jefferson St., Port Clinton.  

This concert will bring together the Terra State Brass Choir and over 15 select area high school musicians performing music by such diverse composers as John Williams, Leonard Bernstein, Manuel Panella and others.

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TOPS OH 1487 presents new officers and awards

TOPS OH 1487, Port Clinton held their annual Installation of Officers and presentation of weight loss awards on Tuesday, April 9, at the Catawba Community Hall. Karen Hull, Area Captain installed the 2013 officers as follows: Leader, Sue Mooney, Co-leader, Rosetta Just, Secretary, Marylue Carroll, Treasurer, Sandy Wright, Weight Recorder, Janine Dress and Assistant Weight Recorder, Cindy Fedor. Each officer was presented a gift and a certificate.

The following awards were presented:

Best Loser for 2012, Mary Triska; Half way to goal, Sue Mooney; Perfect Attendance for 2012, Cindy Fedor; KOPS (those persons who have lost their weight and are maintaining) who stayed below goal all year, Karen Hull and Patricia Schraidt.

Yellow roses and charms were presented to KOPS for longevity of KOPS status – Clara Maag for 4 years, Patricia Schraidt for 26 years, and Karen Hull for 30 years. Nancy Leiter, who was unable to attend, will be presented her awards for 5 years of KOPS status when she returns.Phil Carstensen was awarded for 12 weeks of no gains for the first quarter of 2013.

TOPS OH 1487, Port Clinton meets every Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Catawba Township Community Hall. Men, women and children ages 7 through 18 are invited to join TOPS for support and education to lose excess pounds. The first meeting is free.

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The speakers will be Joyce M. Gates, M.A., LICDC, LPCC of C.O.P.E.; Joe Vidal, Coroner’s Investigator; and Pastor Debra Domeier of St. John Church. The seminar, to be held at Salem Township Community Center, 11650 W. Portage River South Road, Oak Harbor, beginning at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 30, is open to everyone. There is no cost to attend, and reservations are not necessary. For questions, please call the church office at 419-898-6474.

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Stein Hospice volunteer training held in Port Clinton in May

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 “I thought I was helping others, but I get as much back as I give. Stein Hospice is a great family,” said Peggy Willard, who became a hospice volunteer after she was helped by Stein Hospice when her husband was ill with terminal cancer.  

Retired banker Gene Heinzerling agrees. “I am honored to represent Stein Hospice,” the Port Clinton volunteer said.

To register or for further information, contact Stein Hospice volunteer department at 800-625-5269 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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Stein Hospice offers programs for caregivers

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All caregivers are invited. Please join us Saturday, May 4, from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., at Stein’s main office, 1200 Sycamore Line, Sandusky. People will also learn how to give a hand massage and have the opportunity to talk with other caregivers. For reservations, call Stein Hospice, 800-625-5269.

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National Day of Prayer observed May 2

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The National Day of Prayer was signed into law in 1952 by President Harry Truman, and in 1988 President Ronald Regan signed the law that set the date as the first Thursday in May.

Attendees may want to bring a chair or a blanket. Should it rain, the services will be held in Immaculate Conception Church. For further information, contact Carol Fox at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 419-734-1239.

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