To the editor:

To the editor:

Thank you, Westerville, and beyond!

Heritage Park and the Everal Barn were host to steady crowds, unique art and sounds of music filling the air at the Westerville Area Chamber Music & Arts Festival.

After 36 years, the festival retains as much of the history and philosophies as it did when the chamber's festival first started under the leadership of Doris Hoffman and Ellen Huelf.

With 25 percent new exhibitors and some new musicians, an estimated 12,000 patrons could enjoy a leisure walk through the artists' walkways, sit under shade tents to listen to the sounds of music performed at the TED FM/Roush Honda, or roushsaysdrive.com stages or watch their children giggle as they joined in the activities sponsored by the city Parks and Recreation Department, Nationwide Children's Hospital Close to Home and Dave and Charlene Kott of Asset Management.

This year's committee chair, Jean Halpin, with Ohio Health led a team of dedicated chamber member volunteers that planned all aspects of the festival. With an additional 75 volunteers from artists' assistants, hosts and hostesses, set-up and tear down to auction assistants, parking attendants and youth exhibit sitters, there was a volunteer opportunity for anyone interested.

Westerville community: Thank you for attending. You continue to support the festival and the artists and businesses appreciate the support.

Additional organizations that made significant financial contributions and in-kind contributions were: shade tent sponsors Mount Carmel St. Ann's and HCR Manor Care; Ohio Health, bringing us the silent auction; and lead band performances made possible by WDEM and Time Warner Cable. Other contributions were: Art Covan-Re/Max Associates Realty, CME Credit Union, FastSigns, Golden Web Designs, Kemba Credit Union, S & M Rental Space, Panera Bread, Feridean Commons, Morgan Jewelers, Human Resource Services, Guernsey Bank, Triad Architects, Sterling Consulting Services LLC, Harper Architectural Studio, Worthington Cylinders and the Westerville Fire Association.

The Westerville Area Chamber Music & Arts Festival is an example of how government, the business community and the general public can work together to showcase a community. City departments: electric, fire/EMS, service, parks and recreation, water and police; and the Westerville school district are involved in assisting the chamber with the logistics of the festival. It is a model of which to be proud, demonstrating how key service entities come together to support a community event that promotes business and adds to the quality of life in our community.

We appreciate the continued support the community gives to the event and we look forward to planning the 2010 festival.

Janet Tressler-Davis, CCE

President/CEO

Westerville Area Chamber of Commerce

To the editor:

I am writing out of concern for my husband's life and safety. His goal is to ride his bike every day during the spring, summer and fall and even in the winter if the weather permits.

He does this out of a love of cycling and for us, his family, so that good health will allow him to live a longer life.

Recently, the central Ohio cycling world lost a good man, Steve Barbour. Steve was an experienced rider who followed all laws and safety guidelines for cycling, and he died anyway. Why? He was killed when a driver struck him from behind early in the morning on Saturday, July 18, on Cemetery Road in Hilliard.

My husband also follows all the rules and rides courteously. But all the care in the world can't compensate for inattentive, aggressive or impaired drivers. For this reason, I pray for my husband's safety whenever he is out on the road.

Please take extra care when you are driving. Bicyclists have the right, under state law, to ride on the streets and roads and are required to follow the same traffic laws as other wheeled vehicles. Sidewalks are for pedestrians and children on bicycles.

I encourage you to teach your children to respect bicycle riders by the way you share the road with two-wheeled forms of transportation. Use caution when approaching and passing bicyclists. If you ride, please follow all laws and ride courteously -- stop signs and traffic lights apply to you, too. There is room for improvement on both sides.

I also encourage everyone to come out for the Garrett Wonders Memorial Bike Race on Saturday, Aug. 8. Garrett Wonders was another bicyclist who died in a traffic accident and this exciting day of racing honors him. While there, you can pick up your own "Share the Road" magnet for your car.

Bicycling is a great sport and way to get around. Please help keep central Ohio safe for all bikers.

Sandy Schumann

Westerville