July 25, 2016

Partly cloudy

Newsnet kicks off series today with Lodi

LODI — A Cleveland television news channel will feature five Medina County communities in a special series, beginning today with Lodi.

Newsnet 5’s morning show will be at the Lodi Railroad Museum, 204 S. Railroad St., from 5 to 7 a.m. and a reporter will be walking the streets for the 5 p.m. broadcast, as part of Newsnet’s “Building Better Neighborhoods: Keeping You Safe Where You Live” series.

Newsnet producer Ann Geyser said the series is intended to build relationships among neighbors and community officials in the counties surrounding Cleveland.

“This is really about bringing back a sense of community,” Geyser said. “We’re helping residents connect to their city officials, police departments, and each other.”

Between March 24 and April 25, Newsnet will visit five cities, villages or townships each in Cuyahoga, Lorain, Summit, Medina and Lake counties.

In Medina County, Lodi will be joined by Brunswick, Wadsworth, Spencer Village and Montville Township.

In each community, officials were asked to select five streets to participate in a safety meeting with police officials. The meetings will provide specific information about safety and neighborhood building, and maybe even form community block watch groups.

Beyond safety, the station will feature the cities as communities worth visiting or calling home.

“We’re having our anchors showcase them, talk about what’s cool about these cities and what’s interesting and quirky,” Geyser said. “What’s good about them, why it’s a good place to live or visit or work.”

Geyser said the station will also ask its viewers to vote on the cities and neighborhoods that are featured, and the network will return to those select neighborhoods in each county in May to do followup features and present them with a Building Better Neighborhoods sign.

Today, anchor Stephanie Ramirez will be town from 5 to 7 a.m. with live shots and discussion at the Railroad Museum and reporter Tracy Carlos will be talking to residents for the evening newscast from 5 to 6 p.m.

Lodi Mayor Rob Geissman said the initiative gives his village another reason and more support to engage some of its residents.

“It’s prompting us to go ahead and do the community meeting,” Geissman said. “Usually when Cleveland news stations come to one of our communities, it’s bad news, but this is something they could do that’s positive.”

Geissman said he also appreciates that a representative of Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine’s office could be at the meeting upon request. The date of the meeting has not yet been set, he said.

Geyser confirmed that DeWine’s office is supporting the initiative.

“Their mission is to help consumers with their problems, and this is a win for everybody,” she said.

Geyser said the station will visit Montville in the second week of April, Wadsworth and Spencer in the third week and Brunswick in the last week of the program.

Contact reporter Dan Pompili at (330) 721-4012 or dpompili@medina-gazette.com.