METRO DIGEST || Drawing, music, yoga, stress topics of minority programs

Drawing, music, yoga minority programs


McGuffey Centre, 1649 Jacobs Road, will host two events for Minority Health Month, funded by a grant from the Commission on Minority Health.

“Strike a Note Against Violence: The Art of Violence Prevention” will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. The event is targeted at youths ages 6-17 and will include drawing, musical instruments and yoga. Law enforcement officers also will speak about violence and bullying.

“Pump Up the Heart: Bring Down Blood Pressure” is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday. The event will target seniors, and nurses will speak on hypertension and stress and provide blood pressure screenings. Attendees also will participate in low-impact exercises.

Call 330-744-4377 or 330-565-4845 to register for either program.

Volunteers needed for Earth Day cleanup


Trumbull Neighborhood Partnership is looking for volunteers to participate in its Earth Day Community Cleanup from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday. For information, contact Denise Rising at 330-469-6827 or

Warren man tries, fails to evade police


Jeffrey S. Gates, 55, of Porter Street Northeast, was charged with felony failure to comply with the orders of a police officer after police said he refused to stop after a traffic crash.

Gates fled Warren and was ultimately arrested in Portage County, where he was taken to jail.

Warren police were dispatched to Youngstown and Ridge roads for a hit-skip accident at 3:37 p.m., and spotted Gates in a car traveling west on Youngstown Road. Police said he side-wiped a car at Warren Boulevard and Niles Road.

Gates continued west on South Street, refusing to stop for lights and siren on a police car, and eventually got on the state Route 5 Bypass, where the Ohio State Highway Patrol took over the chase.

No hearing has been scheduled on the charge.

YPD officer promoted to detective sergeant


A city police officer was promoted Thursday to the rank of detective sergeant.

Sharon Burton, who has been on the force since 2001, will be a patrol supervisor on afternoon turn beginning today.

Burton has worked as a patrol officer, dispatcher and investigator in the department’s Family Services Unit.

Johnson charged with murder, kidnapping


A bond of $3 million was set Thursday for Shawn Johnson, 49, of Ward Street Northwest, who was indicted Tuesday on aggravated murder and other charges.

He pleaded not guilty before Judge Ronald Rice of Trumbull County Common Pleas Court.

Johnson, also known as Shawn Hope, is charged in the Dec. 2 shooting death of John P. Kellar, 41, of Niles, and kidnapping two women, all in a house on Stephens Avenue Northwest.

Firefighters injured in morning blaze


Two firefighters were slightly injured Wednesday after a fire at 447 St. Louis Ave.

Crews were called at about 6:15 p.m. to the home, where they found a blaze on the first floor. Damage is listed at $500.

The firefighters were treated at the scene and did not miss any duty time, reports say. The cause is under investigation.

Farmers’ market tonight in Austintown


The Austintown Farmers’ Market will host its first Spring Market and Family Fun Night from 5 to 9 tonight at Austintown Township Park.

The event features vendors and family-friendly entertainment. Habitat for Humanity will provide free crafts for children and Friends of Austintown Farmers’ Market will provide free face-painting.

Along with shopping, the market will feature a fashion show at 6 p.m. There also will be door prizes and basket raffles, among a variety of other activities.

School Bus Road-e-o Sat. in Austintown


Austintown School District’s transportation department will host the Northeast Ohio School Bus Road-e-o beginning at 8 a.m. Saturday. The event tests bus drivers’ operational and safety skills.

Top drivers from the regional competition will qualify to compete in the state competition. Spectators who want to cheer on their districts are asked to enter campus from Idaho Road.

Akron firm provides grants for Valley kids


The GPD Group Employees’ Foundation, the mission of which is to make a difference in the lives of children, recently awarded more than $30,000 and six grants to organizations in the Youngstown area. They are: Crown Theater Productions, Columbiana, $5,000; Homes For Kids of Ohio Inc., Niles, $4,500; Inspiring Minds, Warren, $5,000; Lakeview School District, Cortland, $3,100; Lakeview High School, Cortland, $5,000; and Lordstown School District, Lordstown, $7,500.

GPD Group is an employee-owned, full-service architecture and engineering firm with more than 540 design professionals with headquarters in Akron. For information about the GPD Group Employees’ Foundation, visit or call toll free at 1-800-955-4730.

West Side neighborhood focus of history program


Three Youngstown State University graduate students will unveil a special presentation about the city’s historic lower West Side Steelton neighborhood from 1 to 2:30 p.m. Saturday in the Youngstown Historical Center of Industry and Labor, 151 W. Wood St.

The program traces how Steelton developed rapidly with the growth of the Ohio Steel Co., the Lower Mills and eventually U.S. Steel Ohio Works.

The free event will be in the museum’s Harry Meshel classroom. All former steel company employees, family members of employees, historians and interested parties are invited to attend.

Road to remain open


The Ohio Department of Transportation announced Thursday that state Route 517 will not be closed just west of East Fairfield in Columbiana County next week as had been planned for two culvert replacements.

Race to close roads in Mill Creek Park


The following roads and areas in Mill Creek Park will be closed from about 7 to 10:30 a.m. Sunday for the Run Y-Town 10-Miler: Old Mill Drive, Kreider’s Entrance, West Newport, East Newport and Chestnut Hill drives, and the parking areas for East Golf Drive.

Housel Craft roadwork


Effective immediately through next Friday, Housel Craft Road between state Route 534 and Stroup Hickox Road in Farmington Township will be closed due to an emergency culvert replacement, the Trumbull County Engineer’s office announced. The recommended detour is north on Route 534, east on state Route 88, and south on Stroup Hickox Road.

Safe-driving class for teens Sunday


Tire Rack Street Survival, a driving-safety program for teenagers, will offer a class at Boardman Park from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. The course includes a classroom session as well as hands-on activities related to driving hazards and obstacles. The cost is $75 per person. For information, visit

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