UP: Findlay attorney Kelton Smith may not have been the biggest fan at the recent sold-out Arlo Guthrie concert at the Marathon Performing Arts Center, but he was the only one we know of to bring along a prop. Smith brought along his “Group W” bench, which usually sets on the front porch of his Lima Avenue law practice. Group W is referenced in Guthrie’s classic “Alice’s Restaurant” 1967 song, and movie of the same name which came out 50 years ago. Guthrie performed his signature song at the concert, and Smith’s bench was in the lobby and became a photo hot spot for Guthrie followers after the show.

UP: It’s beginning to look a lot like … the Lima Avenue construction project could, maybe, hopefully, be done by the New Year. Of course, West Park residents won’t believe it until they can drive on it. But highway crews have been moving barrels and barriers, and the amount of (road closed) signage has decreased in the construction zone. We have to believe those in West Park are wishing all the signs would come down yesterday. The year-long closure has reduced the options to get in, and out, of the subdivision, and caused much heavier than usual traffic on usually quiet Harrison Street, the main route between Lima Avenue and West Sandusky Street. ODOT hasn’t said just when Lima will open, but if not by Thanksgiving, can we at least expect it by Christmas?

UP: It’s been reported in The Courier several times already, but its worth repeating one more time so no one can say they didn’t know. The filing deadline for candidates’ petitions to run for public offices next spring is 4 p.m. Dec. 18. The earlier than usual deadline is due to the fact the primary election will be in March. A candidate requirement guide can be found at sos.state.oh.us and the local board of elections can answer filing questions. Consider giving Hancock County voters options next year. Take the important first step. Then run!