Guest Column: Newark Advocate's 20 Under 40 Spotlight

Posted on Thursday, December 14, 2017 by Mindy Ross

Allow me to take you on a journey. It begins on a road well traveled-- Broad Street, right here in Licking County.

 As you make your way down the busy streets of Pataskala, you’ll pass our famous diner, The Nutcracker, where the waitresses know your name, and the food tastes like grandmas. Take a turn down Main street, and you’ll see The Dairy Hut, where the community gathers after baseball games and trips to the pool in the summer. As you approach downtown, you just might catch Mayor Mike, wearing overalls, directing traffic for one of our community events. Drive a little further, and you can grab a fresh cup of coffee at Depot Street, where city council member, Tom Lee welcomes you with a smile. As you pull away, wave to Mrs. Hayes, your kid’s elementary teacher, and city council member, playing with her kids in her front yard. On your way out of town, tip your hat to the police officers at town hall, and lastly, stop in one of the local churches where a hot meal and a warm heart greet you anytime you’re in need.

Do you feel as if you’ve just traveled back in time? Well, time travel is not necessary to experience this lifestyle that seems long gone in most parts of the country. It’s right here in Pataskala, where small-town feel meets big city growth.

Although Licking County is on the grow, we have somehow been blessed enough to keep some things a priority, like caring for people, gathering together, and serving our city in unity.

When we moved to this area in 2012, my husband opened the council meeting with this statement: “The four most influential entities in the city are the government, the schools, the businesses and the churches. If these four entities will come together in unity, we will make an impact, unlike this city, has ever known, and be a shining example to others.”

This year, 2017, we have seen this come to pass, and it’s made me proud to call myself a citizen of this great county!

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