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Ribbon-Cutting and Open House for the Hotel at Oberlin

On Tuesday, September 13th, our only event was the long-awaited ribbon-cutting/open house for the "Hotel at Oberlin" on College Street in Oberlin. Mr. Tony Gallo, President of the Lorain Chamber of Commerce, said that this event had originally been scheduled to take place in April of this year but he was glad that things turned out the way that they did because on this day in September the temperature was moderate and the sun was shining beautifully.

IMG_4463 Among the first people that we met were Ms. Erica Todhunter and Mr. Jim Barnhart, the hotel's general manager and executive chef, who were front and center in the ribbon cutting ceremony that took place about 5:15pm. From there we went upstairs for appetizers (they were great-plenty of vegetarian options) and networking.

We talked with Mr. Jerry Good, Economic Development Coordinator at the Lorain County Community Development Department, about future projects for the area.  He told us that a possibility worth exploring might be an International Food Market along the lines of Jungle Jim's in Fairfield.

When we told Ms. Barb Przybylowicz, the owner of the Tuck Shop which specializes in gourmet popcorn, that we worked for Margaret W. Wong and Associates that helps people with situations pertaining to immigration, Ms. Przybylowicz told us about a Facebook page that we may want to check out that might connect us with some international students in need of assistance.

We talked for a while with Ms. Enola Haynes of Jimmy Haynes Music in Amherst about her son's career. He is a successful Nashville artist who has performed in 27 (!) different countries and has 8,000 friends on Facebook from many different countries.IMG_4476

We had a particularly informative visit with Ms. Cathie Liembach of Agon Leadership about people that she has worked with who have immigrated to the United States from such places as Romania and Somalia and how difficult it often is for the foreign-born to adjust to the new culture of the United States where things move a lot faster and with more intensity than their countries of origin. Thankfully, there are people like Ms. Leimbach around to mentor and guide them.

Overall, about 150 people RSVP's for this event and we had good conversations with about 15 of them in the space of an hour and a half and made some new friends. The trip to Oberlin and back took a while but we considered it well worth our time.


Michael Patterson 

Community Liaison,

Margaret W. Wong & Assoc. Co., LLC

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