Thursday, August 18, 2022
Former Shelby County Republican chairmen J.R. Showers and J. Lee McNeely joined current Chairman Rob Nolley for a photo at a fundraising event last night for Diego Morales, Republican candidate for Indiana Secretary of State. The event was held at “Silas’ Pub” in Blessing’s Opera House. The Addison Times will report on both Morales’ and Democrat Destiny Wells’ candidacies in upcoming editions.
Leader’s Excitement for Future of County’s Boys & Girls Clubs Continues to Increase
Scott Spahr is CEO of Boys & Girls Clubs in Shelbyville, Morristown and Waldron and executive director of Shelbyville’s Club. The best part of his job is the kids he and his staff serve. | by LuAnn Mason
by LUANN MASON
Excitement about the futures of Shelby County’s Boys & Girls Clubs continues to increase in Scott Spahr, who is just shy of entering his third year as the chief executive officer (CEO) for the clubs in Shelbyville, Morristown, and Waldron.
Spahr supervises the unit directors in Morristown, Dana Songer, and Waldron, Lisi Campbell, in addition to being the executive director of the Shelbyville Boys & Girls Club.
He became the fourth executive director in the Shelbyville clubs’ 68-year history, on Oct. 5, 2020, and assumed the role of CEO when John Hartnett Jr. retired. Hartnett served the community in that executive director position for nearly 40 years. His name was recently added to the local organization’s building at 710 S. Miller St. to honor his contributions and devotion to the community and its youth.
The Boys & Girls Club here is now the J. Kenneth Self, John Hartnett Jr. Boys & Girls Club of Shelbyville.
Spahr had been the director of the Club in Morristown from 2012-2020.
Since stepping into his new role here, rebranding has begun, partially to resolve misconceptions and to meet the needs that youth have in today’s society.
Before explaining further, Spahr quickly added that the past would not be erased. “There’s a lot of history here, and I want to build off that history for generations to come.”
Members at the national level of this organization actually started making changes in 1990 when the Boys Club and the Girls Club combined nationwide, said Spahr. Of course it created some confusion since the organization was exclusive to boys since its beginning in 1860.
Changes at the national level of the Boys & Girls Club ultimately trickle down to local clubs. “The program is much different than it was even 20 years ago where the kids would come to hang out with friends and shoot hoops,” said Spahr. The organization administrators, he said, are focusing now on areas like mental health and learning loss.
Just recently, their focus has moved to the teen population and how the Boys & Girls Club can better serve that age group, he said. “A few ideas have been kicked around such as a teen center and programming that is age-appropriate for them.
No matter what the focus may be, though, “the club’s here to help the kids,” said 54-year-old Spahr. “We’re here to provide a safe place for kids. A place where they can be kids and a place where they can grow and learn life lessons.”
A hot meals is included now as part of the local Club’s member’s daily routine. When they arrive locally after school every day, they head to the dining area for a free hot meal such as chicken fingers, tater tots, and a banana, said Spahr, provided through a grant received by Shelbyville Central Schools Corp. The same is provided to those attending after-school programming at Girl’s, Inc., an organization totally separate from the Boys & Girls Club.
Then, they may choose to have help with homework or the computer, do arts and craft projects, build with Lego bricks, and use games in a game room. “And, use the opportunity to just be kids and have fun,” said Spahr.
He said the local club follows the national organization’s rule to have the ratio of one staff member per 20 children during activities “to the tee”. The staff members are both men and women of varying ages.
“We did a survey. Nearly 200 were returned from the community,” said Spahr. “We asked questions like what are we doing right, what needs improvement, and so on. Safety and communication were the top two requested improvements.”
To-date, safety measures have been put in place throughout the building. “For instance, office staff has live video views of the rooms and hallways inside the building. “We do emergency training for the staff and work with the local safety departments (fire, law enforcement, medics) to accomplish that,” he said. “They know the emergency procedures for tornados and evacuation plans are reviewed frequently with staff.”
In addition, the Shelby County clubs follow the rules established by the national Boys & Girls Club organization, according to Spahr, that designate the hours of 2-6:30 p.m. as “Kid Time” in the buildings. “No one is in the building other than the kids and the 10 to 12 members on staff. Parents or guardians must sign out when a child leaves the building.”
In the past, parents filled out paperwork to register their child or children to be members of the Boys & Girls Club, selected their activities, and provided personal information. “Parents have the opportunity now to sign children up online (www.shelbycountyBGC.com),” said Spahr. “They can make donations there, too, and pay fees.” There is also a list of activities and additional information about the Club.
By 2023, Spahr said new software should be installed allowing parents or guardians to change their personal information and information for their child or children.
Finally, he said, “we’re in the process of new strategic planning, too,” with David Fry of Effective Advancement Strategies. He’s done work with the Blue River Foundation and other non profits.”
More about Scott Spahr:
Born in Celina, Ohio
Married to Kim (Wooten) Spahr for 20 years this October
One child, Emma Grace Spahr, a senior at Morristown Jr.-Sr. High School
Moved to Shelby County in 2011
U.S. Army veteran
Honored as Morristown’s “Outstanding Citizen” in 2014
Worked as a basketball coach in the Shelby Eastern Schools system and coached girls basketball for many years at all levels, including at Mayville State University in North Dakota.
Manager at Charles Major Manor Senior Apts. in Shelbyville before becoming the third unit director of the Boys & Girls Club in Morristown (2012-2020)
Started being a DJ six years ago as a way to make money for the Morristown Boys & Girls Club. He still DJs at weddings, retirement events, and parties for youth.
High School: Winter Haven, FL
College: Lake Region State College and Mayville State University
Fun Fact: He has visited 49 states and 12 countries. He has not been to Idaho.
The following couples applied for marriage licenses last week at the Shelby County Clerk’s office: Lily M. Kirby, 21, and Marcus J. Hershberger, 21; Alexis M. Borer, 26, and James R. Prather, 27; Brett J. Haacker, 49, and Kellie E. Allen, 47; Larry F. Chambers, 50, and Amber D. Arbuckle, 37; Samuel C. Wiseman, 37, and Morgan R. Oesterling, 25; Veronica L. Cundiff, 24, and Erik M. Barker, 25; Miranda D. McGovern, 26, and Adam T. Senteney, 31; Anantay D. Bowling, 23, and Nicholas J. Cleveland, 24; Erica D. Martin, 48, and Brian D. McNeal, 49; and Gregory A. Snyder, 65, and Jeannie K. Gabbard, 67.
HOOSIER NEWS: Two former Mitch Daniels aides have created a Political Action Committee encouraging him to run for governor in 2024. Christine Luther Hurst, who was communications director for Daniels’ 2004 campaign, and Ben Ledo, who was Daniels’ personal driver during his 2004 campaign, filed a statement of organization on Aug. 10 for the PAC called 'Frugal Hoosiers for Mitch 2024.' The purpose behind the PAC is simply stated as 'We are encouraging Mitch Daniels to run for governor in 2024.' Speculation has run rampant that Daniels might run for a third term as governor since June, when he announced his retirement from his role as president of Purdue University at year’s end. Daniels himself has not weighed in on a run, though another former aide, Mark Lubbers, told Politico in June that the former governor was fascinated by the possibility. (IndyStar)
This Week in Shelby County" works by George L. Stubbs Sr. are owned by the Shelby County Historical Society (Grover Center) and used with permission.
THIS DAY IN SHELBY COUNTY HISTORY
News around Shelbyville and the surrounding area as reported on or about this date in history. Selections are curated from the Shelby County Public Library Genealogy Department.
20 YEARS AGO: 2002
The proposed Walmart Supercenter could bring additional restaurants and roads, and possibly even a bridge that would give the city greater access to the other side of Big Blue River, Plan Commission Director Tom DeBaun and Mayor Frank Zerr said. Zerr said a second access to Old Rushville Road would be helpful for emergency purposes. Mainstreet charter member Jeff Sponsel commended the organization and city for negotiating with Walmart regarding the building’s location and sign ordinances.
30 YEARS AGO: 1992
Given that the opposition had held a few meetings, Carroll Thurston organized a rally in support of the proposed racetrack, to be held at the Manufacturers Building at the fairgrounds. Thurston said the track would benefit the fair association.
The Cardinals were the 1992 Shelby County Babe Ruth rookie league season champions. Members of the team were Derek McNew, Eric Jones, Austin Collins, Adam Wise, Jason Myers, Andy Kaiser, Adam Baker, Ryan Knopp, Trevor Poe, Deacon Marshall, Trent Meltzer, Luke Willard and Zach Brown. Coaches were Glen Baker, John Hartnett Jr. and Matt Brown.
40 YEARS AGO: 1982
Six Shelby County residents were arrested for stealing marijuana from a cultivated field maintained by a Johnson County resident near the Shelby County line. Officers confiscated one and one-half tons of marijuana.
A Morristown man was injured when he said an arsonist entered his home at gunpoint, stabbed him in the leg with a knife and then set his home afire for the second straight night. The man said he was waiting inside his home on E. South St. in hopes the arsonist who had set his home afire would return. About 11:15 p.m., the homeowner said the arsonist returned with a gun and took away his knife in a struggle. The man was stabbed several times in the leg during the incident, he said. Authorities were investigating.
50 YEARS AGO: 1972
The band “Addison Street Miracle” performed at Hollidays Place, adjacent to Kennedy Park, at a Sunday night dance.
60 YEARS AGO: 1962
Three local men were sentenced for disorderly conduct and assualt and battery following a fist-swinging brawl at the door of Ike’s Tavern on E. Jackson Street. Many more had been involved in the fight, but the three arrested were the only ones left when police arrived at the scene. Officers James Pickett and William Hill were both struck breaking up the fight. One of the arrested men was taken to the hospital to be treated for lacerations, where he attempted to kick the nurse and had to be handcuffed to the table.
Col. Russell Brandenburger Sr., commanding officer of the 7th Battalion, Indiana Guard Reserve, organized his staff at a meeting at the local armory. Staff officers were Lt. Col. James McKeand, Lt. Col. Bueford Robbins, Lt. Col. James Robison, Maj. Gerald Carmony, Maj. James Williams, Maj. Wilson Dalton, Maj. John Thomas, Maj. Joseph Johnson, Maj. Ronald Felty, Capt. Ralph Van Natta, Capt. Charles Williams, 1st Lt. Ralph Amos and Capt. Harley Carew.
70 YEARS AGO: 1952
Thelma Miller was crowned queen of the Fairland Centennial by Judge Harold Barger. The Brandywine Township 4-H float showing a century’s progress in housework won best parade float. The pioneer cabin float of the Patterson brothers was second and the Howard and Scott company birthday cake float was third. The festivities were a success, officials said, although a Michigan carnival worker was injured while dismantling the ferris wheel when a rope wound around a windlass slipped as a piece of the wheel was being lowered. The man was in “fair” condition at Major Hospital.
Four Shelby County doctors - two physicians and two dentists - received notices to report for military service. The physicians were Dr. V. Brown Scott of Shelbyville and Dr. J.A. Davis of Flat Rock, and the dentists were Dr. A.M. White and Dr. F.R. Dale of Shelbyville.
80 YEARS AGO: 1942
The Morristown Canning Company was short-staffed for the war effort. They asked for 35 more tomato peelers and 25 more men.
County officials discussed a plan to crack down on hoarders who were holding onto scrap metal, which could be used in the war effort.
90 YEARS AGO: 1932
A new state law abolished the school enumeration count. The law instead would distribute state tuition funds on the basis of average daily attendance. “The enumeration has been conducted annually for many years, at considerable expense to the taxpayers, for the purpose of determining each county’s share in the state tuition funds, despite the fact that each year the census has been about the same as in the preceding year,” The Republican said.
100 YEARS AGO: 1922
Claude Stanley, a clerk at the Todd Clothing Store, caught a three and one-quarter pound bass from Lewis Creek.
Local Democrats Mr. and Mrs. Charles Hack, Harry C. Morrison, Steve Runyan, Gordon Thurston and Claude Henry attended the Sixth district Democrat meeting held in Connersville.
Burglary was reported in the 100 block of S. Miller St., Shelbyville.
JAIL BOOK-INS: Billy T. Davis, failure to appear, hold for another jurisdiction; Roy A. Dunn, child seduction, sexual misconduct with a minor; Heather R. Hall, OVWI; Chad D. Hopkins, domestic battery, strangulation, parole hold; Tonia S. Miller, theft, theft with prior; Bon A. Struck, OVWI endangerment, OVWI with prior.
Mildred J. Brinson, 85, of Morristown, passed away Monday, August 15, 2022, at Cypress Run in Morristown. She was born December 18, 1936, in Waldron, the daughter of Frank J. and Rose M. (Runnebohm) Beyer. On June 1, 1957, she married, H.W. Dwight “Jack” Brinson, Jr., and he preceded her in death on November 17, 2011. Mildred is survived by her sons, Michael Brinson of Morristown, and Jeffery Brinson and significant other, Elizabeth Storms, of New Castle; sister, Jane Higgins and husband, Todd, of Naples, Florida; sister, Barbara Abel and husband, James, of Pensacola, Florida; grandchildren, Mark Brinson and wife, Jessie, Samantha Fridlund and husband, Adam, Bryan Brinson and wife, Kelly, Quinn Higgins, Rose Higgins, Henry Higgins and Jack Brinson; great-grandchildren, Kathryn Brinson, Nora Lynn Fridlund, Hayden Brinson, Carter Brinson, James Fridlund and Everett Brinson; and numerous nieces and nephews. In addition to Jack, Mildred was preceded in death by her parents; son, Daniel Brinson; brothers, James Beyer and Maurice Beyer; and sisters, Lillian White and Elizabeth Wenning.
Mildred graduated in 1955 from Waldron High School. She was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Shelbyville. Mildred and her husband, Jack, owned and operated “The Cabin” in Morristown for many years. She was an accomplished seamstress and worked with interior designer Jack Sanders. Mildred was also a member of Psi Iota Xi sorority.
Private graveside services will be conducted at St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery in Shelbyville. Services have been entrusted to Freeman Family Funeral Homes and Crematory, 819 S. Harrison St. in Shelbyville. Memorial contributions may be made to Cypress Run, 868 S. Washington St., Morristown, Indiana 46161. Online condolences may be shared with Mildred’s family at www.freemanfamilyfuneralhomes.com.