February 7, 2006
OHIO CHALLENGE HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES 2006 LEADERSHIP
Rodney Hale, Trenton Chief of Police, has been appointed the volunteer chairman for the 2006 Ohio Challenge Hot Air Balloon Festival set for July 21-22-23, at Smith Park in downtown Middletown. Chief Hale has served the event since its beginning in 2003, most recently as vice-chair of the 2004 event. The Hale family has long been supportive of area events, including the original U.S. National Hot Air Balloon Championships held 1992-1994. The two Hale brothers, their wives, children and mother, have all worked together to provide the on-site communications and coordination services for not only the balloon events, but other events as far back as the 1991 Middletown Bicentennial.
Peggy Ketron has come aboard as Event Manager, replacing Kathy Venturella who resigned to take a position with Republic Airways. Mrs. Ketron, a Monroe High School graduate, has lived in Middletown throughout her adult life, but spent her professional career out of town serving 31 years as a registered nurse, then nurse manager at Kettering Medical Center Network’s Sycamore Hospital near the Dayton Mall. Now retired, she brings her management skills to this large community event.
Other Members of the committee are:
Treasurer/2003 Chair Dave Pearce, Bank One NA .
Pilot Coordinator/2005 Chair Ginger Bruggeman, United Way
Pilot/Competition Event Dr. Mark Frazer, Summit Family Physicians
Pilot/Competition Event James Wannemacher, Triple J Investments
Sponsorships Jennifer Becker, SS & G Financial Group
Food Vendors Paula Hale, The Cumberland Group
Arts & Crafts Vendors Lisa Pearce, Cincinnati Financial
Balloon Discovery Center Sharon Brown, Middletown City Schools
City of Middletown Ginger Smith, Mark Hoffman & Jim Cunningham
Site Communications Doug Hale, Butler County Deputy Sheriff
Entertainment Karen Blakley, Re/Max
Sky Diver Event David Hart, Team Fastrax
Sky Diver Coordinator Maria Langendorf, City of Middletown
Hospitality Tent/Receptions Carole Schul, Community Volunteer
Landowner Relations Walter Leap, Leap Realtors
Parking Jim Griffith, Middletown Police Department
Pilot Gifts Fran Sack, Lifespan; Kristy Irving-Barton. Reagent Chemical & Research Inc. &
Amanda Price – Brown’s Run Country Club
Beer Sales Jon Stickelman, CH2MHILL Engineering Services
Publicity Ann Mort, Administrative Business Services/ Middletown CVB
5K Race Sara Newlin/ Middletown High School Athletic Boosters
Geocaching Sharon Stone/Clark, Schaefer, Hackett
Site Finance Dick Mort, Community Volunteer
Ohio Challenge not only presents a top quality hot air ballooning event, combined with several unusual entertainment options for the entire family, it has built a reputation for assisting non-profit organizations within the community. The object of the event is to provide low cost entertainment, showcasing the Middletown community.
Ohio Challenge has become quite popular with sponsors who see it as an attractive way to present their company name. For sponsorship and general information, call 513-422-3030 or email to info@OhioChallenge.com
Applications for potential arts and crafts or food vendors may be downloaded from the www.OhioChallenge.com website. Those wishing to participate are encouraged to submit applications as soon as possible since the available vendor spots are quickly filled.
Information about Ohio Challenge and planned activities throughout the weekend will be posted to the website as they become available.