The Van Wert County Courthouse

Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2019

Catapult brought its unique transformative talents to the Niswonger Performing Arts Center of Northwest Ohio on Saturday. Members of the shadow art group and “America’s Got Talent” finalists twisted and transformed their bodies into a multitude of different scenes, animals, and inanimate objects during the show. The scene above includes men with “dogs” chasing three other people. Dave Mosier/Van Wert independent

POSTED: 10/14/19 at 6:59 am

VW independent/submitted information

Couples who are planning to get married within 60 days now have the option of starting their marriage license application’s online. 

Prior to visiting Van Wert County Probate Court, both parties will need to complete their portion of the online application. Once the online portion is complete, a confirmation number will be given and will need to be presented to the clerk’s office when the parties appear to complete the application process. 

The option of starting the process at the clerk’s office is still available, while those who choose the online option will be able to answer the application questions at a time and place convenient to them, and also expect less of a waiting time at the court.  

Van Wert County Probate Court is located at 108 E. Main St. in Van Wert. Hours are 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Mondays and 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. For additional information about marriage license requirements and how to complete a marriage application online, visit the Probate Court’s webpage at The court was able to fund this project with technology grant funds received from the Supreme Court of Ohio.  

Marriage officiants must be registered with the Ohio Secretary of State prior to the ceremony or the marriage will not be valid. More information is available at

POSTED: 10/14/19 at 6:46 am. FILED UNDER: News

VW independent/submitted information

Just a reminder that early voting has begun at the Van Wert County Board of Elections office’s new location at 1362 E. Ervin Road (old Pangles supermarket building). Voting hours are as follows:

  • Tuesday, October 15, to Friday, October 25 — 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Monday, October 28, to Friday, November 1 — 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. 
  • Saturday, November 2 — 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Sunday, November 3 — 1 to 5 p.m.
  • Monday, November 4 — 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

A new feature has also been installed for voters’ convenience. There is a drop box at the Jennings Road entrance that voters may use to drop their ballots off, either during the daytime or after hours when the office is closed.

Just a reminder that the Board of Elections office has moved from 120 E. Main St. to 1362 E. Ervin Road, on the corner of Ervin and Jennings roads. Voting parking and the voting entrance face Jennings Road, while there is a large parking lot with numerous handicap parking spaces. 

A walk-in door faces Jennings Road marked “voting entrance” and there will also be flags marking the entrance next to the large garage door.    

For more information, call 419.238.4192.

POSTED: 10/14/19 at 6:44 am. FILED UNDER: News

Crestview’s 2019 Football Homecoming King and Queen Drew Mosier and Ragen Harting are shown with their court during Friday night’s Homecoming game against Spencerville. Game story and photos are on the Sports Page. Wyatt Richardson/Van Wert independent

POSTED: 10/12/19 at 7:16 am. FILED UNDER: News

VW independent/submitted information

Van Wert High School Theatre is preparing for its upcoming production of Sherlock Holmes, adapted by Tim Kelly and based on the original written mysteries by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. 

Will Sherlock Holmes solve the case of the disappearing letters? Who will he cross paths with? Is there enough time? Join VWHS Theatre on November 22 and 23 to see if the mystery is solved. Performances begin at 7 p.m. at the Niswonger Performing Arts Center. 

Shown is the cast and crew of Sherlock Holmes, the upcoming Van Wert High School Theatre. photo provided

Cast and crew for the production include the following students: Nathan Evans as Sherlock Holmes, Cooper Adams as Dr. Watson, Theodosia Rider as Professor Moriarty, Dane Chiles as James Larrabee, Alli Morrow as Madge Larrabee, Becky Rigdon as Alice Faulkner, Colin Ireland as Sid Prince, Brooklynn Laukhuf as Teresa, the maid, Mackenzie Jones as Mrs. Hudson the cook, and Cooper Adams as Forman the butler. Sydney Maller as Mrs. Bassick leads the Suffragettes, Ginger and Pepper, McKenna Gilbert, and Anna Wasson, as they work to have their voices heard. 

The audience will also meet Prince Carl, portrayed by Devon West; and Tayzia Havill, as Lady Edwina. Moriarty’s secretary Joan, is played by Grace Doctor. Newsboys portrayed by Draven Hanicq and Devon West, Nicole Palazzolo as flower women, Nick Workman as a detective, Gracie Price as an elegant lady, Draven Hanicq as a gentleman, Devoney Sidle as Gertie, and Aubree Bear as Maggie Baskerville. 

The stage crew consists of stage manager Evan Sroufe, Clayton Doctor, Anna Cassidy, Hanna Say, Aubree Bear, Gracie Price, Abbi Phillips, Abram Price, Bella Smith, and Jaryn Pierce. 

Tickets may be purchased from any of the theatre students listed above or by calling or visiting the NPAC box office at 419.238.NPAC, starting Monday, October 21. Tickets will also be available at the door. All tickets are general admission and $6. 

Sherlock Holmes is produced with special arrangement by Pioneer Drama Service Inc. in Englewood, Colorado.

POSTED: 10/12/19 at 7:12 am. FILED UNDER: News

VW independent/submitted information

DEFIANCE — State Representative Craig Riedel announced on Friday that he filed petitions to run for re-election as the representative for the 82nd Ohio House District.

Craig Riedel

The 82nd District encompasses all of Defiance, Van Wert, and Paulding counties and a portion of Auglaize County. Representative Riedel is currently in his second term.

“I am honored to serve the people of northwest Ohio and look forward to making great strides for our region,” Riedel said. “I want to thank the people for trusting me as their representative and look forward to continuing to serve.” 

While in the legislature, Rep. Riedel has been a champion for the people of northwest Ohio, and has spearheaded legislation to create a full-time Paulding County Municipal Court, cut income tax by 4 percent across the board, and ban abortion after a heartbeat can be detected. 

He currently serves on the Commerce & Labor, Economic & Workforce Development, and Higher Education committees, and is the vice chair of the Higher Education Committee. 

Representative Riedel is retired from a 27-year career at Nucor Vulcraft Group. In his community, he is a member of Defiance Rotary Club and was an officer with the Defiance High School Athletic Boosters.

Representative Riedel lives with his wife in Defiance. 

POSTED: 10/12/19 at 7:07 am. FILED UNDER: News

The Van Wert County Foundation recently made a pledge to the Business Development Corporation of Van Wert for Accelerate Van Wert-A Strategic Economic Growth Initiative designed to address three specific challenges facing the Van Wert County economy. Here, Foundation Executive Secretary Seth Baker (right) presents a check to BDC representatives Adam Ries and Michele Purmort-Mooney. Those who would like to learn more about this initiative can contact Andy Czajkowski at andy@statewideford.comphoto provided

POSTED: 10/12/19 at 7:04 am. FILED UNDER: News

VW independent/submitted information

The last quarterly meeting for 2019 for the Van Wert County Regional Planning Commission will be Tuesday, October 15, at 5 p.m. in the Commissioners’ Conference Room, Suite 200 in the County Annex Building.

In addition, the Van Wert County Courthouse will be closed Monday, October 14, to observe Columbus Day. 

POSTED: 10/12/19 at 6:57 am. FILED UNDER: News

VW independent/submitted information

Students in Van Wert High School’s Government classes are inviting Van Wert residents to join them in an upcoming mayoral candidate forum to be held at 7 p.m. Monday, October 21, in the First Federal Lecture Hall of the Niswonger Performing Arts Center of Northwest Ohio. 

This event was created to assist city residents who don’t know who to vote for and those who would like to hear from the candidates themselves. 

The three mayoral candidates, independents Don Farmer and Joe Jared and Republican Ken Markward, will each have two minutes to respond to questions presented, rotating who answers first throughout the event. The candidates will not be given the opportunity for rebuttals during the forum. 

This is an opportunity for public questions and concerns to be voiced. 

City residents are encouraged to submit their questions in advance to VWHS Government teacher Jeff Kallas at, as there is no public forum planned at this time. Questons should be submitted by 3 p.m. Friday, October 18. 

Students will facilitate the forum from start to finish, from introducing candidates to moderating and timing the event. Community members are encouraged to attend a meet-and-greet with the candidates following the forum. 

POSTED: 10/11/19 at 7:44 am. FILED UNDER: News

VW independent/submitted information

Two people were killed in a one-vehicle crash that occurred Thursday afternoon on U.S. 127 in Van Wert County.

Roger D. Schilt, 75, of West Unity, was pronounced dead at the scene, while his wife, Catherine L. Schilt, 74, also of West Unity, was taken to Van Wert Health by a Van Wert Fire Department EMS squad, and then life-flighted by Samaritan medical transport helicopter to Parkview Regional Medical Center in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where she later died from injuries sustained in the crash.

According to troopers from the Van Wert Post of the Ohio State Highway Patrol, Roger Schilt was driving a 2006 motor home north on U.S. 127, just north of Ohio 81, at approximately 2:40 p.m. Thursday when the vehicle drifted left of center, continued off the left side of the road, hit a ditch, and struck a concrete culvert before coming to a stop.

The crash resulted in the closing of U.S. 127 during the Patrol’s investigation and accident scene clean-up, but was later reopened.

The Van Wert Post was also assisted at the scene by the Ohio City Volunteer Fire and EMS Department, Ohio Department of Transportation-Van Wert County Garage personnel, the Van Wert County Sheriff’s Office, and Hague Towing.

Alcohol is not believed to be a factor in the crash, which remains under investigation.

The Patrol encourages drivers and passengers to always wear their seat belts and never drive distracted or impaired.

POSTED: 10/11/19 at 7:42 am. FILED UNDER: News

VW independent/submitted information

The Van Wert Police Department received a report of a telephone scam claiming the Social Security Administration is working with Van Wert Police regarding compromised Social Security numbers.  

The scammers are using a cloned phone number that comes up as Van Wert Police Department. Local residents who receive a similar call should not provide the caller with any information and do not send any money.  

The police department encourages families to discuss this with their parents, grandparents, and neighbors as these types of scams commonly involve the elderly, and also contact local law enforcement for more information or to answer additional concerns. 

POSTED: 10/11/19 at 7:25 am. FILED UNDER: News