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Church & Dwight to invest $50 million in Seneca County

Adding up to 80 jobs at Old Fort plant

OLD FORT, Ohio – November 22, 2022 – Church & Dwight Co., Inc., has announced that it intends to move forward with an expansion project at its facility in the village of Old Fort, Ohio, involving at least $50 million in new investment and the creation of 80 new jobs. This follows a fulfilled commitment in 2020 to invest $38 million and create 60 jobs. The Old Fort facility currently has 309 employees. The project is contingent upon final approval of all state and local incentives supporting the project.

The project will expand the facility’s cat litter manufacturing capacity in addition to adding a significant investment in machinery and equipment, new processing equipment, and rail improvements. 80 additional jobs will be created once the project is completed in 2024, making Church & Dwight one of the top ten employers in Seneca County. The Old Fort location was in competition with other Church & Dwight facilities in Pennsylvania and California, in addition to other greenfield locations in the US.

Plant Manager David Johnston said: “I’m so pleased that Church & Dwight has chosen our facility as the site of this major investment. It’s a testimony to our employees and the trust Church & Dwight has in our facility’s ability to produce great products consistently and efficiently. We also very much appreciate the strong support and partnership we receive from the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership, Regional Growth Partnership, the Ohio Department of Transportation, the Ohio Rail Development Commission, and JobsOhio.”

“Seneca County has a rich manufacturing tradition, and Church & Dwight is a fantastic company continuing to carry on that tradition,” said Seneca County Commission President Tony Paradiso. “Congratulations to Church & Dwight and everyone at the Old Fort plant for their hard work, dedication, and commitment to quality and our community.”

About Church & Dwight Co., Inc.

Founded in 1846, Church & Dwight is a 5 billion company headquartered in Ewing, New Jersey, that is one of the fastest growing Consumer Packaged Goods companies in the world. Church & Dwight was added to the S&P 500 in 2016. The Company manufactures and markets a wide range of personal care, household and specialty products, with such brands as Arm & Hammer, Trojan, First Response, Nair, Spinbrush, Oxi-Clean, Orajel, Xtra, WaterPik, Batiste, Vitafusion, Flawless, Zicam,  and more.  Find out more at www.churchdwight.com.

About the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership

Started in 1983 as the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC), the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.tiffinseneca.org.

Hobby Lobby Announces Tiffin Location

Retail store to open late 2023 at the Tiffin Mall

Future site of Hobby Lobby at the Tiffin Mall

TIFFIN, OHIO – November 21, 2022 – Today, The Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership announced that Hobby Lobby, a national retail chain started in 1970, plans to open a 60,000 square foot store at the Tiffin Mall by late 2023. Hobby Lobby will create 60 full-time jobs, 20 part-time jobs, and plans to invest nearly $4 million into the future location.

“The Tiffin Mall is thrilled to announce the signing of a new 60,000 square foot anchor, Hobby Lobby,” said Mall Owner Steve Roumaya. “Today’s announcement will be the start of a renounced revitalization of the shopping center to bring more retail and restaurants to Tiffin and Seneca County.”

Today’s announcement is a key development for future growth at the Tiffin Mall, bringing a nationally recognized anchor tenant onto the site. The store will offer more than 70,000 items including home décor and furniture, art and craft supplies, fabrics, and more.

Hobby Lobby and the current Tiffin Mall Owners, Suder Pierson Properties, plan to invest nearly $4 million into the site including a new façade, full interior renovation, and parking lot restoration. Once completed, Hobby Lobby will occupy the entire east side of the mall from Planet Fitness through the former J.C. Penney location. The deal is contingent on approval of a CRA agreement to assist with the offset of new property tax valuation from building improvements.

Tiffin Mayor Dawn Iannantuono said, “I’m excited for the announcement that Hobby Lobby is coming to the City of Tiffin and expanding our retail options. The investment in the Tiffin Mall is just further proof that great things are happening everywhere in our community.”

About Hobby Lobby

In 1970, David and Barbara Green took out a $600 loan to begin making miniature picture frames out of their home. Two years later, the fledgling enterprise opened a 300-square-foot store in Oklahoma City, and Hobby Lobby was born. Today, with more than 900 stores, Hobby Lobby is the largest privately owned arts-and-crafts retailer in the world with over 43,000 employees and operating in forty-seven states.

Hobby Lobby offers over 70,000 items featuring home decor, seasonal decor, tableware, floral, art supplies, craft supplies, yarn, fabric, jewelry making, hobbies and much more.

About the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership

Started in 1983 as the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC), the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.tiffinseneca.org.

City of Tiffin awarded $150,000 to support Community Kitchen

Community Development Block Grant awarded to support pilot programming

TIFFIN, OHIO – November 14, 2022 – The Ohio Department of Development’s Office of Community Development has approved the City of Tiffin’s application for a $150,000 Community Development Block Grant allocation to support pilot programming at the Tiffin Community Kitchen. The grant, which is awarded to the city every two years for community development projects supporting low-to-moderate income residents, will be used to help Seneca County Common Ground begin pilot programming while they wait for their new space as part of Old Trinity Episcopal Church to be built.

Tiffin Mayor Dawn Iannantuono said, “I’m grateful that the City of Tiffin can take advantage of funding through the Community Development Block Grant program to support projects like The Tiffin Community Kitchen, which will grow to become valuable resources for our residents.”

Common Ground plans to use the funding they receive from the CDBG program to lease the space at 45 S. Washington Street in Downtown Tiffin to provide cooking instruction and meal prep for low-to-moderate income residents in Tiffin. They will also use the funds to hire both the kitchen manager and assistant kitchen manager who will run the day-to-day operations and help source outside partners.

Seneca County Common Ground Board President Aaron Gerlach said that he was “thankful for the city’s support of this project and City Council’s willingness to help fund the creation of innovative approaches to nutrition and local foods in Tiffin.”

About the Tiffin Community Kitchen

Since 2019 Seneca County Common Ground has been promoting the growth, purchase, and use of locally sourced foods. The Tiffin Community Kitchen is one component of this initiative and is focused on engaging residents in the preparation of local foods. Eventually to be sited in an addition to Old Trinity Episcopal Church, the Kitchen is currently operating out of a leased space at 45 S. Washington St. in Tiffin where they operate a pilot program focused on teaching low-to-moderate income individuals about how to prepare fresh ingredients and eat healthy.

About the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership

Started in 1983 as the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC), the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at http://www.tiffinseneca.org.

Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership receives grants for new holiday lighting

Grants allow for nearly 100 lighted snowflakes in Downtown Tiffin

TIFFIN, OHIO – November 7, 2022 – The White Family Charitable Fund and the Tiffin Community Foundation awarded grants for the fabrication of nearly 100 new light pole lights for Downtown Tiffin this holiday season. The grants provide a 50 percent match to the funds provided by the City of Tiffin toward an overall cost of nearly $42,000.

The snowflakes will replace the red and green lights that currently reside on the poles during the holidays and will brighten the downtown during the season while creating a sense of community pride and cohesiveness with the community branding image. The snowflakes with be mounted on permanent brackets on the poles for ease of installation and potential future seasonal décor, and are slated to be up in time for the tree lighting ceremony on December 2, 2022.

The Downtown Design Committee has been working with many local organizations to bring this project to fruition, including Arnold Machine, Clouse Electric, Sentinel Career and Technology Center, and Public Works with the City of Tiffin.

Mayor Dawn Iannantuono said, “This holiday season, we encourage people to come to Tiffin and shop locally, and this exciting project will further entice people to see everything that’s happening in Downtown Tiffin. Thank you to the White Family Charitable Fund and the Tiffin Community Foundation for helping to support this project and make our community shine!”

About Downtown Tiffin

The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together as “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC (now TSEP) to act as the downtown organization which is now “Downtown Tiffin.” In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Ohio Main Street Program and became a state and nationally accredited program with Main Street America. For more information, click here.

New Christmas Festival Coming this Holiday Season

German/Bavarian market planned downtown

TIFFIN, OHIO – November 1, 2022 – The Downtown Tiffin Marketing Committee under the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership announced today that there will be a new holiday event – the Kris Kringle Markt on December 2 and 3. The festival will be an open-air holiday market highlighting German/Bavarian-inspired Christmas offerings.

Visitors can enjoy the sounds of live holiday music, the aroma of German food, late-night shopping, children’s activities, and the ambiance of an old-world German Christmas.

Court Street will be transformed to take on the traditional German Christmas market, or Weihnachtsmarkt feels, featuring local vendors in white tents adorned with holiday lights offering fresh greens, garland and wreaths, handcrafted gifts, Christmas ornaments, and more. Downtown restaurants and bars will feature German-style food and beer selections, mulled wine (Glühwein), and specialty hot chocolate beverages. Santa will be available for pictures at Pan Yan Bookstore, and several other activities will be spread throughout downtown including strolling Christmas carolers, live ice sculpture carvings, and a parking lot dedicated to donations for the Salvation Army of Tiffin. The RTA parking lot will feature live Christmas trees for sale that are being sponsored by local businesses along with a Boot, Hat, and Mitten drive. All proceeds from tree sales will go to the Salvation Army of Tiffin. The Christmas festival will also be hosting multiple food trucks to feature German food & drinks, such as Schmidt’s Sausage Truck.

Mayor Dawn Iannantuono said, “I’m excited to see a new event in Downtown Tiffin that will appeal to families and welcome people to experience our community. This is the perfect way for us to continue our celebration of Tiffin’s bicentennial!”

The Kris Kringle Markt will be open Friday, December 2nd from 5 pm – 10 pm in conjunction with the tree lighting and Saturday, December 3rd from 10 am – 3 pm in conjunction with the holiday parade. Follow along on our social media outlets to stay up to date and learn more. Facebook @KrisKringleMarktTiffin, Instagram @kriskringlemarkttiffinoh, and TikTok @kriskringlemarkttiffinoh

About Downtown Tiffin

The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together as “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC (now TSEP) to act as the downtown organization which is now “Downtown Tiffin.” In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Ohio Main Street Program and became a state and nationally accredited program with Main Street America. For more information, click here.

ABR approves two façade grants and a sign grant

Projects total over $47,000 in investment

TIFFIN, OHIO – October 5, 2022 – Tuesday, the Architectural Board of Review (ABR) approved two Façade Enhancement Grants for the buildings located at 40 Perry Street and at St. Joseph Catholic Church, along with a Sign Enhancement Grant for Pan Yan Bookstore.

The ABR approved a grant of $10,000 for restoration work on the stained-glass windows at St. Joseph Catholic Church, and a grant of $4,200 for painting and lighting at 40 Perry Street. These projects closed out the Façade Enhancement Grant for 2022 with approved grants for 14 buildings in Downtown Tiffin and a total investment of nearly $340,000.

Mayor Dawn Iannantuono said, “It is exciting to see that the city’s façade program continues to create a significant return on investment for our community. I would like to thank all of the building owners who continue to invest in Downtown Tiffin.”

Since the Façade Enhancement Program’s inception in 2014, 116 projects have been approved for a total downtown investment of nearly $3.3 million.

About the Façade Enhancement Program

The Façade Enhancement Program is a City of Tiffin reimbursement grant that was started in 2014 and provides a 50 percent match of funds for eligible exterior improvements on residential and commercial structures within the downtown historic district, up to $10,000. Each building is eligible to receive up to $10,000 per calendar year. For more information, visit www.tiffinseneca.org (search “Façade Enhancement”).

About Downtown Tiffin

The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together as “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC (now TSEP) to act as the downtown organization which is now “Downtown Tiffin.” In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Ohio Main Street Program and became a state and nationally accredited program with Main Street America. For more information, click here.

Downtown Tiffin Receives Four State Awards

Mary Lewis, 92 South Washington St., 149 Frost Parkway & 24-25 Adams St., and Arlington Acres honored

COLUMBUS, OHIO – Oct. 4, 2022 – Heritage Ohio, for the first time ever, presented Downtown Tiffin with four awards at the Annual Preservation and Revitalization Awards Ceremony Tuesday, Oct. 4, at the historic Ohio Theatre in Toledo, Ohio.

Awards were given to:

  • Mary Lewis winner of the Spirit of Main Street Award 
  • 92 South Washington Street winner of the Best Commercial Rehabilitation (Small Project Award)
  • 149 Frost Parkway & 24-25 Adams Street winner of the Best Residential Rehabilitation Award
  • Arlington Acres winner of the Historic Farmstead of the Year Award

This Spirit of Main Street award is presented to an individual who has dedicated their time, effort, and expertise toward helping their Main Street program transform and thrive. The Best Commercial Rehabilitation award is presented to one or more individuals, tenants, or building owners who have completed the best total building rehabilitation project based on proper preservation techniques. The Best Residential Rehabilitation award is presented to one or more individuals, tenants or homeowners who have completed the best exterior and/or interior single-family residential project based on proper preservation techniques. The Historic Farmstead award is presented to the historic farmstead which best embodies the marriage of modern agricultural practices with historic buildings, or best embodies the innovative reuse of historic agricultural buildings. 

Matt Wiederhold, the Executive Director of Heritage Ohio, said “Downtown Tiffin’s Main Street program continues to thrive. I would like to congratulate them on their awards for these projects that preserve history in Tiffin and create a better quality of life.”

Since Downtown Tiffin began submitting applications in 2017, the organization has received 13 awards from Heritage Ohio and received one honorable mention.

Tiffin Mayor Dawn Iannantuono said, “I am thrilled that the efforts of our businesses and building owners in Tiffin continue to be recognized by Heritage Ohio. Congratulations to all of the award winners, and especially to Mary Lewis, who is being commended for her years of dedicated service to Tiffin and Seneca County.”

The Heritage Ohio Annual Preservation and Revitalization Conference is to provide attendees networking opportunities and informational presentations by community preservation and revitalization experts in addition to the awards ceremony.

About Heritage Ohio

As Ohio’s official historic preservation and Main Street organization, Heritage Ohio fosters economic development and sustainability through preservation of historic buildings, revitalization of downtowns and neighborhood commercial districts, and promotion of local tourism. Learn more by visiting http://www.heritageohio.org.

About Downtown Tiffin

The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together as “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC (now TSEP) to act as the downtown organization which is now “Downtown Tiffin.” In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Ohio Main Street Program and became a state and nationally accredited program with Main Street America. For more information, click here.

International Company Brings Headquarters to Tiffin

Opus Management offers digital options for small business

TIFFIN, OHIO – October 3, 2022 – Today Tim and TJ McKee announced they are relocating the international headquarters for their digital management company, Opus Management, to 23 W. Perry St. in downtown Tiffin.

Tim was born and raised in Tiffin but left after high school, he felt it was time to come home and be close to family. Co-owner Tim McKee said “We like that Tiffin has two colleges in addition to a community college nearby where we can recruit young professionals to remain in the community after graduation. Opus Management is also here to help small businesses grow locally.”

Opus Management is an international tech company with 12 employees nationwide, three of which are in Tiffin and plan to open their new location by November 1, 2022. They offer services like digital marketing, business management systems set up and training, bookkeeping for small businesses, website design, as well as provide a number of trainings focused on “how to’s” with software programs, social media forums, tech talks, and more. They have the ability to tie all systems together making the businesses they assist, higher-functioning and more integrated. Opus Management has uniquely scalable solutions for start-ups to enterprise size companies. Their goal is to bring enterprise solutions to small and mid-sized businesses at an affordable price, while tailoring the strategies and methods to the unique needs of each company.

Mayor Dawn Iannantuono said, “I’ve had the privilege of meeting Tim and TJ, and can’t express how excited I am to have them decide to bring their business to Tiffin. I wish them all the success for years to come.”

About Opus Management:

Opus Management opened in 2000 in Sacramento, California and currently have offices in California, Nevada, Florida, Indiana, Texas, and Washington. Their business management solutions enable and empower quality and excellence by combining a practical industry experience with an automized set of services.  A winning strategy is the first step toward innovation.

About Downtown Tiffin

The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together as “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC (now TSEP) to act as the downtown organization which is now “Downtown Tiffin.” In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Ohio Main Street Program and became a state and nationally accredited program with Main Street America. For more information, click here.

Seneca County Commissioners create countywide facade enhancement program

Program to provide up to $5,000 to local businesses to make exterior improvements

This press release was issued by the Seneca County Commissioners on 9/29/2022.

[Tiffin, OH — Oct. 29, 2022] – The Seneca County Board of Commissioners allocated $25,000 to a countywide facade enhancement grant program Thursday morning as a way to reinvest tax funding back into the local community.

Commissioner Tyler Shuff proposed the program during a board session last month.

Seneca County is partnering with Seneca Regional Planning Commission to administer the program in an effort to provide grant money to assist with the revitalization of exterior facades across Seneca County. Fifty percent of all allocated funds will be designated for Tiffin and Fostoria with the remaining fifty percent allocated for the villages and rural areas of Seneca County. The program is on a first-come, first-serve basis and in future years, it will give priority to first-time applicants.

A committee, which includes representation from all across the county, is to be formed to review and rule on applications. The committee will decide if the proposed projects meet the stipulations of the program and if they are eligible for funds.

The program is to be similar to Tiffin’s downtown facade enhancement program but will cover areas of the county not currently covered by an existing program.

The city’s program, which was launched in 2014, provides a 50 percent match of funds for eligible exterior improvements on commercial structures in the downtown historic district. The county’s version is to provide a 50 percent match up to $5,000.

Shuff said this is the first façade program in Ohio that covers the entire county.

The Commissioners said the program is going to start small, but it could increase in size in future years.

“We want to give the taxpayers and our local businesses some of their tax money back to reinvest in themselves across our entire county,” Shuff said.

He said the city of Tiffin’s downtown facade program has had great success, providing $100,000 each year, but sparking more than $3.2 million in private investment since 2014.

“We believe that we can amplify this success and bring the momentum countywide,” he said. Shuff said he hopes the program can spark investment into properties not only in the cities but also in the villages and more rural areas of the county.

“We hope that if someone is on the fence about investing and beautifying their property, this program can serve as an appealing incentive to move forward with that investment,” he said. Board President Anthony Paradiso said he believes the investment back into the county should serve as a multiplier and that grant funding could be the difference between a project moving forward or not.

“We are excited to see this program move forward,” he said.

Shuff said applications for the program can be found on the county’s website at www.senecacountyohio.gov, or at the Commissioners’ Office, 111 Madison St. He said applications are to be accepted beginning on Oct. 7th.

Downtown Tiffin Trick or Treat planned for Oct. 20

Halloween Art featured by Columbian High School

TIFFIN, OHIO – September 23, 2022 – The annual Downtown Tiffin Trick or Treat event is planned for Oct. 20, from 4-6 pm as the Downtown Tiffin Third Thursday event.

Seneca County residents are encouraged to bring their little ones to stop at Downtown Tiffin businesses to collect treats and explore everything going on in the community. Residents will also have the opportunity to vote for their favorite Halloween décor in the business decorating contest during the event. The winning business will be announced on the Downtown Tiffin Facebook page Monday, Oct 24.

While residents are downtown, they can enjoy Halloween themed artwork designed and built by the Tiffin Columbian High School art students. Freshmen through seniors will be creating site specific artwork geared toward the young trick or treat crowd for their enjoyment. Over 40 different large-scale sculptures made of paper mache, metal, and more will be featured throughout downtown, since students were encouraged to be resourceful with their building materials and creative with their designs.

Tiffin Mayor Dawn Iannantuono said, “The Downtown Trick or Treat is a great opportunity for the community to see all that is going on with the businesses in our downtown. I’m especially excited that this year’s event will give Tiffin Columbian students a chance to participate and show off their creativity.”

For more information, visit www.downtowntiffinevents.com or search for “Downtown Trick or Treat” on Facebook.

Third Thursdays are sponsored by Reineke Family Dealerships and UIS Insurance and Investments.

About Downtown Tiffin

The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together as “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC (now TSEP) to act as the downtown organization which is now “Downtown Tiffin.” In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Ohio Main Street Program and became a state and nationally accredited program with Main Street America. For more information, click here.