Many of the beautification projects you see in the downtown Portsmouth, Ohio area were provided by the Paul E. Johnson Memorial Fund, the life’s work of his partner Kevin W. Johnson. Another fundraiser to support that fund and thus the beautification of the downtown area is this Sunday (Sept. 11).
“The Tailgate Party is this Sunday from 2-5 p.m. at the home of Jim and Terri Donnally at 7415 Canterbury Rd. in Sciotoville,” Johnson said. “We’ll have music by Steve Free and some of his fans, and they are contributing their time. It’s being catered by Haute Stuff. He is providing and donating the food.”
Johnson said people are invited to come out in their team colors, hats, shirts, whatever you wish to wear, to show your support for your favorite team.
“We’re just going to have an old-fashioned tailgate party,” Johnson said.
Kevin W. Johnson set up the fund after Paul Johnson’s death, and the fund has continued to grow and account for multiple projects.
“Paul’s favorite quote was – ’ downtown is Scioto County’s living room’ this should be our showcase,” Johnson said. “It’s where people first come when they come to Scioto County and we want to impress them and people do the same thing in their living rooms. They make the living room the center of where they invite people over.”
Johnson said, if the community is going to be successful in developing its economy, it wants to look good.
“When we had the Emporium we spent a lot of time in cleaning up that area – cleaning up the parking lot, and working with Terry Ockerman with the Uptown-Downtown Association, even actually resurfacing parking lots,” Johnson said. “Paul was a strong advocate for actually working with the community, raising funds from government to beautify the area.”
Johnson said anyone wishing to make a donation to the Paul E. Johnson Memorial Fund may do so by sending a check made payable to the MSPPJ Fund and send it to post office box 620, Portsmouth, Ohio, 45662.
Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.