Restoration work continues on Medina’s historic McDowell-Phillips House

MEDINA, Ohio — Ever since the Medina County Historical Society finalized the purchase of the McDowell-Phillips House in December 2019, the historic homestead has been a hotbed of repairs and restoration.

The iconic 14-room Queen Anne house, built in 1890, is located at 205 S. Prospect St. in Medina. It is easily recognizable for its turret and deep front porch at the spot where West Washington Street dead-ends into Prospect.

During the past eight months, despite the disruption of COVID-19, the historical society has financed and arranged for extensive exterior work. So far, damaged shingles have been replaced and the house has been painted.

The original slate roof was repaired after minimal damage sustained in Medina’s tornado in April. The two porch roofs were replaced with shingles donated by Owen-Corning. New gutters and downspouts were installed to address water issues, such as rotten window sills and dampness in the basement.

Velvet covered Victorian era chair

Recent donations of chairs by Patty and Jim Chapman and by Jean and Ted Gulyas will provide seating for guests at future events in the historic McDowell-Phillips House in Medina. (Mary Jane Brewer, special to

In the past month, 170 feet of uneven and broken sandstone sidewalk across the front of the property was replaced with concrete to remove tripping hazards. Some sandstone pieces were moved to other walks where they could be safely installed; others were stored elsewhere on the property to use in future projects.

With an Adopt a Tree program and with the help of Beth Schnabel of the Medina County Soil and Water Conservation District and a group of volunteers, 30 blue juniper trees were planted along the borders of the 1-acre property. A row of redbud trees will be planted in the spring.

Schnabel also returned to help transplant peonies to a new flowerbed alongside the restored barn.

As the new trees were being planted, three old, dead or dying 150-year-old trees had to be removed. One mulberry, one maple and one ash tree were taken down and cut into firewood lengths.

While the exterior work was progressing, Paul Wood performed his magic in the upstairs turret bedroom. With 13 angles and planes, the room was a wallpaper hanger’s nightmare, but volunteer Wood made it look beautiful.

Medina Hospital memorabilia

The McDowell-Phillips House historical collection will include these framed photos of a hot air balloon rising from the foundation of the future Medina Hospital in the late 1980s and of the original hospital, which originally was a residential home. (Mary Jane Brewer, special to

The home’s original set of bedroom furniture has been placed in the room, along with dressers from the same period recently donated by the Waite family.

Thanks to an anonymous donor, air conditioning is being installed in the house, primarily to maintain proper humidity levels to preserve the furnishings and artifacts. While those workmen are installing discreet air conditioning ducts in the ceilings, a new security system is also being installed.

Although the Phillips family left most of the original furniture in

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Trump said no COVID-19 negative test, continues to obfuscate on health

  • President Donald Trump on Thursday dodged questions from Fox News about whether he has yet tested negative for COVID-19.
  • The obfuscation came despite Trump claiming he is now recovered from the illness, after testing positive last week.
  • He said he would “probably” be tested on Friday arguing that “there’s no reason to test all the time.”
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

President Donald Trump implied that he has yet to test negative for COVID-19 since his diagnosis, despite boasting that he has recovered.

Speaking with Fox News anchor Sean Hannity on Thursday night, Trump dodged questions over whether he had been tested since he announced his positive test the week before, leading to a three-night stay in the hospital.

Hannity asked if Trump had tested positive since last week. Trump responded that he would likely be tested on Friday, and claimed that there’s no reason to be regularly tested.

He said “Well what we’re doing is probably the test will be tomorrow. The actual test, because there’s no reason to test all the time.”

trump walter reed

A car with US President Trump drives past supporters in a motorcade outside of Walter Reed Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland on October 4, 2020.

ALEX EDELMAN/AFP via Getty Images

He also avoided earlier questions on testing from Hannity:

When Hannity asked if he had been tested recently, Trump responded: “Yeah, I just saw the doctors today. They got me in great shape. I’m in great shape”

And when Hannity asked if he had tested negative, Trump did not answer and instead pointed to an experimental cocktail of antibodies he had been given. “I’ll tell you I took this Regeneron and it’s phenomenal,” he said.

White House Physician Sean Conley said in a memo on Thursday that he thinks Saturday is when Trump can make a “safe return to public engagements.”

Trump told Hannity that he hopes to do a rally in Florida on Saturday night, and one in Pennsylvania on Sunday.

Saturday will be 10 days after Trump was first diagnosed.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that COVID-19 patients wait 10 days after their symptoms first appear before being around others (as long as they have not had a fever in the preceding 24 hours.)

The White House has not disclosed details about Trump’s symptoms or when any first emerged.

Officials have instead obfuscated details of the president’s health.

The White House won’t say when Trump last tested negative before his positive diagnosis.

That means it is unclear who is at risk among the people that Trump saw in the busy week before he tested positive, or when Trump is likely to stop being infectious.

Donald Trump coronavirus

Trump on his way to Walter Reed Military Medical Center after he tested positive for COVID-19 on October 2, 2020.

SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

As Business Insider’s Jake Lahut and Oma Seddiq reported, the last time Trump or anyone at the White House said on the record that the president tested negative

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St. Anthony’s Soup Kitchen in Skowhegan creatively continues to serve the community

SKOWHEGAN — The cars continue to line up and roll through, while others walk up wearing masks.

The images of this weekly labor of love look different than they did just eight months ago, but it’s Thursday night, which means a free dinner is available to all who need one thanks to the volunteers at St. Anthony’s Soup Kitchen in Skowhegan.

“It’s going well. Our numbers increase every week,” said Aldea LeBlanc, coordinator of the kitchen.

St. Anthony’s Soup Kitchen, located in the parish hall of Notre Dame de Lourdes Church on Water Street, offered a free, sit-down, hot meal for anyone in need every Thursday night prior to the start of the pandemic in March. The ministry is entirely volunteer run.

“The meals were suspended until early June when the soup kitchen resumed again,” said Nora Natale, office manager at Christ the King Parish, of which the soup kitchen is a part. “Most of the crew was more than ready to see our guests again.”

“The need is so great here,” said Fr. James Nadeau, pastor of Christ the King Parish.

The diners are currently not allowed in the parish hall due to the pandemic, but nobody involved was willing to give up this important ministry that has helped thousands of community members through the years.

Now, volunteers wear masks and practice social distancing, the meals are served in a drive-thru format in the parking lot of the church and other recipients participate through take-out service.

While the delivery methods have changed, what has not is the appeal of the meals, which have included pork chops, barbecue chicken, and many other delectable choices.

“We also provide a vegetable and fruit of some kind, as well as donated desserts and bread,” said Aldea. “The meals are served from 4:30 to 5 p.m. to anyone who comes.”

Established in 1991, the soup kitchen shut down briefly in 2017 while the parish sought funding and someone to lead it. 

Aldea stepped forward, along with Steve Watrous, and the kitchen began serving meals again in November 2018.

Patrons not only come from Skowhegan but from surrounding communities such as Athens, Bingham and Canaan.

The soup kitchen is funded through several sources, including donors as well as partners like the Good Shepherd Food Bank in Auburn and The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP). Additionally, Walmart provides a $50 gift card each month, which is used to buy food or supplies, and Hannaford donates food for the meals, as well as bread for the guests to take home.

“If there is any food left over, it gets donated to a homeless shelter in Skowhegan,” said Aldea.

Like many ministries, St. Anthony’s has been diligently planning for the colder months ahead.

“There are two separate doors to the kitchen. One of our ideas is to have people come one at a time to pick up their food from one door and exit the other door,” said Aldea. “They could tell the volunteers what items they want

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White House signals stronger coronavirus precautions, but Trump continues to resist

At least nine White House employees have now tested positive for the virus, including senior adviser Stephen Miller, who got his result late Tuesday, a senior administration official said. Trump’s aides, allies and advisers find themselves grappling with how to implement more safety measures and precautions without displeasing their boss, who continues to say — as he did in a tweet Monday — “Don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life.”

In a video he recorded maskless from the White House south balcony Monday night, the president also falsely claimed that perhaps he was “immune” to the virus, said he felt “better than 20 years ago” and urged the public to “get out there.”

The result is a bifurcated culture in Trump’s White House and broader orbit, with informal and halting steps toward more rigorous health measures often undermined or upended by the president.

His team, for instance, tried to puzzle out if there was a way for him to safely return to the Oval Office on Tuesday but ultimately nixed the request, said two people familiar with the discussions, who like others spoke on the condition of anonymity to reveal internal deliberations.

“The White House really isn’t doing anything you’re supposed to be doing in these situations,” said Angela Rasmussen, a virologist on the faculty of Columbia’s Mailman School of Public Health.

Rasmussen added that while she agreed with Trump’s call not succumb to fear, “we also shouldn’t not take the virus seriously just because President Trump says he feels better and is flying around on Marine One and standing on the balcony like Evita.”

On Monday, the White House Management Office sent out an email to senior staff who routinely interact with Trump, aimed at protecting both the president and his advisers. The memo, obtained by The Washington Post, urges staffers to “limit all foot traffic on the first floor of the West Wing as well as in the Residence” and says that “staff should only go to the Oval Office or the second floor Residence when they are requested and expected.”

For staffers who do visit the Oval Office or the second floor of the residence, where Trump lives and holds meetings, and who expect to be within six feet of the president, the memo also requires that they wash their hands or use hand sanitizer before entering; remove any outer garments; and don personal protective equipment provided in an “Isolation Cart” — including a yellow gown, surgical mask, protective eyewear and gloves.

The White House has not changed its mask guidance and is still following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines that recommend, but do not require, wearing a mask. Several administration officials said nearly everyone in the White House has been wearing a mask in recent days, including Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner, who usually does not sport one.

Rapid coronavirus testing is still required for anyone in proximity to Trump, and the White House is also offering testing

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Despite the White House’s COVID-19 Outbreak, the Trump Campaign Continues to Ignore Public Health Guidelines

It’s safe to say that if most political campaigns had seen its candidate, campaign manager, and more than a dozen associates test positive for COVID-19 within days of each other, they would likely reassess the strategy of holding large, in-person events that could be potential breeding grounds for the highly-infectious and deadly disease.

a person looking at the camera: A car with U.S. President Trump drives past supporters in a motorcade outside of Walter Reed Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland on October 4, 2020.

© Alex Edelman—AFP/Getty Images
A car with U.S. President Trump drives past supporters in a motorcade outside of Walter Reed Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland on October 4, 2020.

Not so with the Trump campaign.

While briefly pausing in-person events after President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump disclosed their positive diagnoses on Oct. 2, the campaign announced, just a day later, that “Operation MAGA”—a series of in-person events that the campaign touted as a way to “energize and mobilize the MAGA universe to maintain full speed until the President returns to the campaign trail”—will commence later this week. Trump himself tweeted on Oct. 5, the same day he was discharged from the hospital, that he “will be back on the Campaign Trail soon.”

The Trump campaign’s schedule is already jam-packed. On Oct. 8, Vice President Mike Pence will hold a rally at a tactical gear manufacturing company in Peoria, Ariz. On that same day Donald Trump Jr. is scheduled to hold an event at a Holiday Inn in Panama City, Fla., Lara Trump will join Trump campaign advisers Mercedes Schlapp and Katrina Pierson for a “women for Trump bus tour event in New Castle, Pennsylvania, and Eric Trump will host two events in North Carolina.

“I expect us to have upwards of fifty folks all around the country,” said Jason Miller, a senior adviser to the Trump campaign, on NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday, “flooding the zone in the battleground states later this week.”

Republican strategists say that one main reason the Trump campaign struggled to pivot after the President’s diagnosis is because its strategy, unlike many other Presidential campaigns in the past, is almost entirely dependent on the man on the top of the ticket. Instead of switching the focus to messaging about specific policy promises or other moves a second-term Trump Administration might embrace, they’re hamstrung by their dependence on Trump’s personal draw as a candidate.

“This campaign relies on the candidate to carry [it] more than most campaigns do,” says Alex Conant, a Republican strategist who worked on Florida Senator Marco Rubio’s 016 presidential run. “It’s clearly not helpful to not have the candidate traveling the country in the final weeks of the election.”

But the Trump campaign’s decision to stick to the current strategy carries its own risks. Trump is trailing Biden in the polls by double digits, and a CNN poll released on Oct. 5 found that two thirds of Americans thought he handled the risk of coronavirus irresponsibly. It’s unlikely that continuing to hold in-person events will improve the President’s standing on this latter point.

Pence and Trump Jr.’s in-person rallies this week pose a particular issue. If these

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Trump continues to downplay virus after returning to White House

Washington — President Trump left Walter Reed Medical Center on Monday evening, hours after the medical team treating him for COVID-19 cautioned that he’s “not out of the woods yet.” He got back to the White House shortly before 7 p.m., where he took off his mask and gave a thumbs up before walking inside.

He soon tweeted a minute-long video from the balcony, saying he’d “learned so much about coronavirus” and believes he might be immune to it. “One thing that’s for certain: Don’t let it dominate you,” he said of COVID-19. “Don’t be afraid of it. You’re going to beat it.”

In a tweet Tuesday morning, the president again compared COVID-19 to the flu, which is much less lethal and contagious than the coronavirus. He said Americans “have learned to live with it, just like we are learning to live with Covid.” More than 210,000 Americans have died from COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic.

The president’s attitude alarmed many infectious disease experts, who said he should have stressed precautions Americans should take to try to avoid getting the coronavirus.

Earlier Monday, Dr. Sean Conley, the White House physician, told reporters Mr. Trump will be “surrounded by world-class medical care, 24/7” at the White House.

He’s being treated with dexamethasone, a powerful steroid recommended for use in severe cases of COVID-19. The drug can carry serious psychological side effects, but Conley said the president hasn’t exhibited any of them. He repeatedly declined to provide specifics about the president’s lung condition or the last time Mr. Trump tested negative for the virus, citing federal privacy laws.

President Trump Recuperates Amid Questions About His Health And Campaign
President Trump holds his protective mask on the Truman Balcony of the White House in Washington, D.C., on Monday, October 5, 2020.

Ken Cedeno/Polaris/Bloomberg via Getty Images

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DIY Boom Continues to Drive Demand for Home Improvement Stores

Home improvement stores are on track to permanently land in the essential services or daily needs category, which retail investors have focused on for years. This year, home improvement activity has increased dramatically, and 40% of consumers have indicated that they plan to continue home improvement projects beyond the recession, according to research from the NPD Group. The activity has driven home improvement store sales up 11% this year.

During the pandemic, home improvement stores have become the second fastest growing retail segment in both brick-and-mortar and online sales. In lawn and garden, tools, paint, kitchen and bath and hardware segments, each saw a double-digit increase in both online and in-store purchases. The average shopping trip also increased 10% compared to the average trip in 2019.

Home Depot Versus Lowe’s, which also looked closely at shopping trends in the major home improvement brands, found that Lowe’s saw an early surge in sales in April, up 14.1% for the month. Home Depot on the other hand, didn’t see an increase in sales until May, when activity jumped 26%. In the same month, Lowe’s continued to outperform its competitor, seeing a 46.6% increase in sales. Lowe’s has continued to outperform Home Depot through the pandemic, although both have seen significant increased in activity and the gap narrowed. Notably, significant sales growth continued in June and July, well after home improvements’ normal peak season.

A Long Term Trend

Weekly visits have continued to show strong sales, all the way through early August, the most recent data available. According to, this indicates that the home improvement trend could be long term, as the NPD Group data also suggests. The activity has been driven in part by the fact that people are staying at home more, as well as by homeowners that may have had to delay new home purchases due to economic concerns. In place of upgrading or purchasing a new home, these homeowners are renovating. This latter trend is what may continue to drive home improvement activity beyond the pandemic.

For landlords, the strong sales activity has also translated to strong rent collections through the pandemic. In fact, home improvement collections have been on par with grocery rent collections at 97%, according to research from BTIG. Home improvement retailers have also continued leasing activity and expansion through the pandemic, another signal to landlords that the retail segment is a good bet for the future.

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NJ Top Dentist Practice, Garden State Smiles Continues To Expand Footprint in New Jersey

Garden State Smiles continues to expand its footprint in New Jersey, adding a 5th location and cutting edge technology. This practice and NJ Top Dentist, Dr. Vlad Detinich continues to receive awards and praise.

SCOTCH PLAINS, N.J. (PRWEB) October 02, 2020

Garden State Smiles, a multi-location dental practice in New Jersey led by reviewed and approved NJ Top Dentist, Dr. Vlad Detinich, continues to expand its footprint. Currently serving patients in Monmouth, Ocean, Mercer and Middlesex counties, Garden State Smiles now has 5 convenient office locations in Hamilton, Toms River, Matawan, North Brunswick and Brick, with plans to add more locations soon.

“We’re not just your average dental office”, says NJ Top Dentist, Dr. Detenich, founder and CEO of the company. “We started out with a really simple goal in mind: To provide our patients with an amazing dental experience with every single visit to our offices”. Providing all dental services in one place, with a team that truly cares about their patients comfort and well-being, offering the best technology and convenient office locations does seem to be the winning recipe, as the company continues to expand.

It’s clear that these aren’t just words. The practice has assembled some of the most talented and experienced dental practitioners in the state. “Our team is a huge part of our success, because every person who works here truly cares about the patients we see. We hear feedback all of the time from patients who say that coming to our offices feels like they’re being greeted by their friends or family”, says Bob Schwartz the COO of Garden State Smiles.

In addition to the team, the company has invested heavily in dental technology. With state of the art equipment ranging from laser guided surgery to digital scanning of teeth and bone, 3D panoramic imaging and more. This NJ Top Dentist practice believes in staying up to date with training and technological advancements. Garden State Smiles also offers CEREC, which is a technology allowing crowns to be created on-site, so patients can leave the office with a new crown in place, all done during a single office visit.

To learn more about NJ Top Dentist, Dr. Vlad Detinich and his practice Garden State Smiles, please visit:

About Us

NJ Top Dentists is a division of NJ Top Docs. NJ Top Docs is a comprehensive, trusted and exclusive healthcare resource featuring reviewed and approved Top Doctors and Dentists in New Jersey online in an easy to use format. NJ Top Docs only reviews and approves providers based on merit after they have been extensively vetted.

NJ Top Docs is a division of USA Top Docs which allows patients to meet providers online before making their appointment.

For more information, please click here to contact us or visit

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Kemper House continues the fight against COVID: Strong Points

STRONGSVILLE, Ohio – Since the start of the pandemic, most of us have been waiting for a time when “this is all over” and “we can return to normal”. Yet at this time, there seems to be no end in sight. Kemper House has worked very hard to keep COVID-19 out of our homes. We are committed to continuing the fight but we also need to get back to putting the needs of our residents and staff first whenever possible in this uphill battle.

As you may be aware, the Ohio Department of Aging and Governor DeWine have mandated that residential care facilities must test all employees every two weeks for COVID-19. Their initial testing program was suspended a couple of weeks ago due to a high number of false positives at the earliest testing facilities. The State has now contracted with a new vendor, Mako Labs out of North Carolina, to process the tests. Testing started on Sept. 30 at Kemper House Strongsville and will take place every other Wednesday after that until the end of the emergency or the State says otherwise. The State does not provide support for the actual testing, however, which must be performed at Kemper House by our nurses. With over 5 million Americans now living with the debilitating effects of Alzheimer’s disease, Kemper House is striving to keep residents safe.

Kemper House is a family owned and operated residential care facility that specializes in caring for individuals with all stages and all types of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias up to and including end of life and hospice care. They provide long-term care, adult day care, and short-term respite stays. They have two locations in the greater Cleveland area: Strongsville and Highland Heights. For more information, go to

Gold Plus Award: Strongsville Fire and Emergency Services has received the American Heart Association’s Mission: Lifeline 1/4 u00ae EMS Gold Plus Award for 2019. The department has received this award for the past several years. The distinguished award is presented for implementing quality improvement measures for the treatment of patients who experience severe heart attacks. Every year, more than 250,000 people experience an ST elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI), the deadliest type of heart attack caused by a blockage of blood flow to the heart that requires timely treatment. To prevent death, it’s critical to restore blood flow as quickly as possible, either by mechanically opening the blocked vessel or by providing clot-busting medication. Mission: Lifeline initiative provides tools, training and other resources to support heart attack care following protocols from the most recent evidence-based treatment guidelines. Mission: Lifeline’s EMS recognition program recognizes emergency medical services for their efforts in improving systems of care to rapidly identify suspected heart attack patients, promptly notify the medical center and trigger an early response from the awaiting hospital personnel.   “Strongsville Fire and Emergency Services is dedicated to providing optimal care for heart attack patients,” said Fire Chief Jack Draves. “We are pleased to be recognized for our

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Healing Garden continues to grow with the help of volunteers

The sweat is as thick on his brow as the sentiment is in his voice.

Eddie Schmitz pulls out his cellphone to underscore why he’s here on this Tuesday morning in September, the temperature steadily rising in unison with the emotion with which he speaks.

On its screen flashes a picture of a Canadian mother of two.

She lost her life on Oct. 1, 2017.

“Yesterday, it was Tera Roe’s birthday,” Schmitz says of the Route 91 Harvest festival shooting victim. “On my Facebook page, every single birthday, they’re honored on my page,” he notes, scrolling through one memorial after the next. “Every single one of them.”

Healing Garden volunteers Sue Ann Cornwell, left, and Alicia Mierke work Sept. 14 on restoring ...
Healing Garden volunteers Sue Ann Cornwell, left, and Alicia Mierke work Sept. 14 on restoring memorial trellises for victims of the Route 91 Harvest festival shooting. (Elizabeth Page Brumley / Las Vegas Review-Journal)

Schmitz stands in the center of the Healing Garden, the verdant downtown oasis created in honor of those who died during the tragedy in question, populated by 58 trees for 58 victims (There is talk of adding a memorial to the garden to honor any further victims, as there is no room for any more trees).

Built in just five days after the worst night in the city’s history, it stands as a testament to a community coming together in a time of unprecedented sadness and loss, an enduring patch of serenity catalyzed by the opposite.

“Over 400 people were working 24 hours a day to build that from nothing, from a little plot of land that the city owned,” Mayor Carolyn Goodman says. “They worked around the clock. It’s a beautiful thing.”

As the third anniversary of the massacre approaches, the garden is undergoing a transformation — cement is being poured; cinder blocks are being stacked.

It’s doing so largely at the hands of Schmitz and Oct. 1 survivor Sue Ann Cornwell, an Army veteran and a retired school bus driver, respectively. They spend six to eight hours between them here nearly every day, volunteering their time.

It hasn’t been easy.

Until recently, there had been issues with the local homeless population.

“There’s a lot about the garden that’s inviting to everybody, and so it was inviting to folks who are more down-and-out and in need of a little bit more help than some others,” explains Mauricia Baca, executive director of Get Outdoors Nevada, which oversees the maintenance of the Healing Garden. “But that creates some complications because when somebody is essentially living in a place like the garden, there are no bathroom facilities there, and so that creates some really specific problems.”

Schmitz puts it less delicately.

“It was just bad,” he recalls. “There were needles in here. It was bad.”

But through his and Cornwell’s efforts — as well as some teamwork with Baca and the city of Las Vegas — they’re ushering in a new era for the garden.

Theirs is a story of two friends with one aim: to keep alive the memories of those

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