Local bike trails attracting worldwide attention

Published: Friday, April 21, 2017 @ 12:16 PM


            Amy Dingle, left, director of outdoor connections for Five Rivers MetroParks, and Janet Bly, general manager of the Miami Conservancy District, said the area’s outdoor trails and waterways drew the 2017 International Trails Symposium. The symposium will be May 7 to 10. THOMAS GNAU/STAFF

The 2017 International Trails Symposium is coming to Dayton May 7 to 10, investing what organizers expect will be $1 million into the region and showcasing what a Five Rivers MetroParks director calls “the outdoor adventure capital of the Midwest.”

The American Trails bi-annual symposium was attracted to Dayton by what Janet Bly, Miami Conservancy District general manager, called the nation’s largest network of paved outdoor trails.

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About 500 visitors from 42 states, Washington, D.C., and 11 countries are expected at the symposium, which will feature paid workshops and classes, as well as free recreation, indoors and out. (For a full schedule, or to register for events, visit americantrails.org.)

What unites those coming to Dayton is more than love of the outdoors, Bly said.

“Some of it is love of the environment,” she said. “They see the economic impact of trails and are really trying to promote that in their own communities. And they’re wanting to see what other communities have done.”

Mike Passo, executive director of American Trails, said he and fellow organization leaders liked what they found when they visited the area in November 2016.

He said they found the region and its assets “compelling,” citing in particular what Passo called “an amazing trail system” — with more than 300 miles of interconnected trails, rivers, connections to the trail systems of other cities and more.

“It’s really quite amazing,” Passo said in an interview Friday. “There are activities and energy being put into the (Miami Valley) trail system here that just aren’t happening in other parts of the country.”

But Dayton offered something beyond outdoor assets, trails and waterways that other cities don’t have, he said: Persistence by proponents of Dayton. Passo in particular mentioned Amy Dingle — Five Rivers MetroParks director of outdoor connections.

Said Passo: “They just wouldn’t take ‘No’ for an answer.”

Dingle and Bly said they began making their case for Dayton to the American Trail board in 2015, when the symposium was held in Portland.

Board members were surprised at what they heard, the women said. Then they were intrigued. The area’s aviation heritage sites also were a draw.

“The story really goes back to 2008 and maybe 2006,” Dingle said. “It became really a dream of MetroParks. When we were starting to go into the economic recession, losing all the manufacturing … We said, ‘Wow, we have all these amazing amenities that we need to let the public know we have.’”

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Protecting your data

Published: Saturday, April 22, 2017 @ 2:58 PM


            The son-and-father team of Alek (left) and David Mezera guide web and cloud-hosting services firm DataYard to locally focused success. THOMAS GNAU/STAFF
            Thomas Gnau/Staff

When President Donald Trump this month signed legislation that repealed Federal Communication Commission privacy protections for Internet users, the principals behind Dayton-based ‘Net services firm DataYard had a simple message:

DataYard will not sell customer information. Period.

As much as they opposed the legislation, DataYard principals (and father and son) David and Alek Mezera, say they saw the government’s move as a chance to distinguish their company.

“They (other companies) can collect it, they can store it for indefinite periods of time and they can do what they see fit with it, when they decide to do so,” said Alek Mezera, the younger Mezera and the company’s director of client partnerships.

“We will not collect it,” said David Mezera, company president. “We will not keep it for any longer than is necessary to deliver the services we deliver.

“We’re absolutely not interested in monetizing that information.”

The federal privacy rules would have taken effect this year. Enshrined by the previous administration, they would have banned Internet providers from collecting, sharing and mostly importantly, selling user information without consent.

“I don’t think was a surprise, really,” the younger Mezera said of Congress’ push back against the rules.

Ajit Pai — nominated by the Trump administration this year to be FCC chairman — has said the Federal Trade Commission, not the FCC, should regulate how Internet providers use data.

Now in its 22nd year, DataYard was born as Donet, with all of eight phone lines in the beginning. It re-branded as DataYard in 2012.

“We were taking a more strategic business focus, instead of the residential consumer market that we initially started with in ‘95” DataYard’s president said.

The business since then has transformed. Today with 13 employees, the focus goes beyond Internet access. Offered also are server co-location, cloud computing, data backup and more.

The Internet back in the mid-90s was basically a hobby, the Mezeras recalled. Today, it is threaded into our lives in ways few imagined back then.

“Now, the Internet is an essential utility,” the older Mezera said. “It’s an essential element of every business.”

Based downtown at 130 W. Second St., the company is bigger today but remains local — and unmistakeably Daytonian. The focus is not necessarily on ever-growing sales, but on building relationships with customers.

“We’re not trying to get a national footprint or a global footprint,” Dave said.

Why not aim to get bigger?

“It’s harder to maintain those personal relationships,” the elder Mezera said. “You lose that flavor.”

“It’s a race to the bottom from the price side,” Alek said.

Hash browns recalled for possible contamination with golf balls

Published: Saturday, April 22, 2017 @ 11:00 AM

Hash browns sold under the Harris Teeter and Roundy's brands have been recalled for an unusual reason: possible golf ball contamination.

The Food & Drug Administration's recall notice says that McCain Foods USA, Inc. has voluntarily recalled frozen hash browns sold under the Harris Teeter and Roundy's brands because they may be "contaminated with extraneous golf ball materials, that despite our stringent supply standards may have been inadvertently harvested with potatoes."

>> Read more trending news

The FDA warns consumers that, "consumption of these products may pose a choking hazard or other physical injury to the mouth." No injuries have been reported, according to the FDA.

The recalled products include Roundy’s 2 lb. bag of frozen Southern Style Hash Browns (UPC 001115055019) and Harris Teeter’s 2 lb. bag of frozen Southern Style Hash Browns (UPC 007203649020). The recalled products were manufactured on January 19, 2017 and bear a production code date of B170119.

The Roundy’s products were sold at Marianos, Metro Market, and Pick ‘n Save supermarkets in Illinois and Wisconsin. The Harris Teeter products were distributed in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, District of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, Georgia and Maryland. 

Frito-Lay recalls jalapeno chips over salmonella concerns

Published: Saturday, April 22, 2017 @ 9:06 AM

Frito Lay is voluntarily recalling select brands of its jalepeno-flavored chips due to concerns of salmonella contamination.

The Food and Drug Administration's recall notice says the seasoning powder used on the chips is the target of the recall.

>> Read more trending news

No illnesses have been reported in connection with the recall. Salmonella is an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems, according to the FDA. Symptoms include fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. 



The recall affects products sold throughout the U.S. and includes the following:

  • All sizes of the following two products with a “guaranteed fresh” date of JUL 4 or prior
    • Jalapeño Flavored Lay’s Kettle Cooked potato chips
    • Jalapeño Flavored Miss Vickie’s Kettle Cooked potato chips
  • All of the following multipack offerings that have a “use by” date of JUN 20 or prior printed on the multipack package. In addition, a “guaranteed fresh” date of JUL 4 or prior is printed on the front upper panel of the individual recalled product packages inside each multipack offering. Any other products or flavors contained in these multipacks are not being recalled.
    • 12 count Lay’s Kettle Cooked Multipack Sack
    • 20 count Frito-Lay Bold Mix Sack
    • 30 count Miss Vickie’s Multipack Tray
    • 30 count Lay’s Kettle Cooked Multipack Tray
    • 32 count Miss Vickie’s Multipack Box 

The FDA advises consumers not to consume any of the products included in the recall. Consumers can contact Frito-Lay Consumer Relations at 866-272-9393 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET or visit www.jalapenochiprecall.com for more information.

Home sales remain hot in Dayton area

Published: Friday, April 21, 2017 @ 2:06 PM

TY GREENLEES / STAFF

Home sales in the Dayton area remained hot in March and have now increased 15 out of the past 16 months when comparing year to year sales.

March sales of single-family and condominiums totaled 1,301, the highest monthly sales in 2017 and a 13 percent increase compared to March 2016, according to data released today by the Dayton Area Board of Realtors.

Home sales

201220132014201520162017
Jan.577717739726820 834
Feb.686807754696801 855
March93297793310331148 1,301
April9481085104912251299 
May11301258123113171563 
June10391292128815761,576 
July11071336126115471,495 
Aug.11201337121413841,618 
Sept.9831192115513941,478 
Oct. 10461162123812251,325 
Nov.8949748949441,201 
Dec. 81091598810731175 
Total1127212137127441414015499 
Source: Dayton Area Board of Realtors     

Sales volume generated by March’s activity totaled $194.7 million, leading to an average sale price of $149,720 and a median sale price of $130,000.

Through March, homes sales reached 3,020, a seven percent improvement from 2016 when 2,823 transactions occurred over the same period. Sales volume showed $437 million in sales transactions so far, a jump of over seventeen percent from 2016.

The average sale price year-to date stood at $144,701 and represented a nine percent increase over 2016’s year-to-date numbers. The median sale price also grew, from $113,000 in 2016 to $126,825 through March 2017, a 12 percent increase.

There were 1,961 new listings added in March, down from last year’s 2,085, and year-to-date listings saw 4,800 listings, a decrease of 5.6 percent from the figures submitted through March of last year.

The rate of homes sold across Ohio in March rose 6.3 percent from the level posted during the month a year ago, according to the Ohio Association of Realtors.

“Activity in the housing marketplace in March displayed continued resiliency, as the rate of sales posted a best-ever for the month since Ohio’s Realtors began tracking data in 1998,” said Pete Kopf, president of the Ohio Association of Realtors “We also experienced a healthy rise in the average sales price, evidence that housing is a solid, long-term investment.

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