Dayton museum director stepping down 

Published: Thursday, November 09, 2017 @ 12:23 PM

The Apollo Observatory at Boonshoft Museum of Discovery. CONTRIBUTED
Staff Writer
The Apollo Observatory at Boonshoft Museum of Discovery. CONTRIBUTED(Staff Writer)

The long-time president of a local museum will step down at year’s end. 

Mark Meister, the president and CEO of the The Dayton Society of Natural History, 

will retire on December 31 of this year.

Mark Meister, CEO and president of The Dayton Society of Natural History will retire Dec. 31, 2017. The organization includes Boonshoft Museum of Discovery, SunWatch Indian Village/Archaeological Parkand the Fort Ancient Earthworks and Nature Preserve. He started with the society in 2000.(Submitted)

The 64-year-old has led the organization that includes the Boonshoft Museum of DiscoverySunWatch Indian Village/Archaeological Park and the Fort Ancient Earthworks and Nature Preserve since 2000.

>> PHOTOS: Meet the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery’s lovable critters

Meister will consult the organization through March.

Before coming to Dayton, Meister was the Executive Director of the Archaeological Institute of America in Boston. Prior to that, he directed museums in Michigan, Indiana, Minnesota, and Connecticut. 

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Under Meister’s leadership, the society says: 
→The Caryl D. Philips Space Theater became the first planetarium in the world to combine Digistar 4 full-dome video capability with the Christie Mirage 3-D system in 2012. The planetarium re-opened in October after a four-week refurbishment project. 

The Sun Room, NASA’s Exoplanet Exploration and the only Science on a Sphere in Ohio opened at the Boonshoft with major federal agency support. 

→ The Wild Ohio Zoo was renovated in 2010 and was rebranded the Discovery Zoo.

The zoo changed its range of animals from Ohio to worldwide.   

Rosie the groundhog was reluctant to come out of her cabin IN 2012, despite coaxing from Mark Meister, left, president and CEO of the Dayton Society of Natural History, and Boonshoft Museum of Discovery animal keeper Melissa Proffitt. It was still decreed that Rosie saw her shadow, thus predicting six more weeks of winter. CHRIS STEWART / STAFF(Chris Stewart/Chris Stewart)

→ SunWatch’s 1988 visitor center and museum was renovated in 2005 and 2006.  

→ The museum assumed operations of Fort Ancient Earthworks and Nature Preserve in Oregonia, a National Historic Landmark, in 2009.

>> MORE: Five things to know about Fort Ancient 

Meister founded the Dayton Regional Science Festival in 2011 at the Boonshoft and oversaw the rejuvenation of the museum’s summer camp program.

Meister served on the boards of numerous nonprofit organizations including  the Dayton Sister Cities Committee, the Dayton Council on World Affairs, the Dayton Chapter of Prevent Blindness Ohio and the Dayton Convention and Visitors Bureau, and was president of the Dayton Rotary Club. 
He has been co-chair of the Dayton Literary Peace Prize Foundation since 2007 and was named the Ohio Museum Professional of the Year by the Ohio Museums Association in 2008. 


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K99.1FM named finalist for national radio award

Published: Friday, February 23, 2018 @ 2:02 PM

James Frye “Frye Guy” and Nancy Wilson have been manning the mics at K99 together since 2010, and there’s no more dynamic duo in country radio. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO
James Frye “Frye Guy” and Nancy Wilson have been manning the mics at K99 together since 2010, and there’s no more dynamic duo in country radio. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

K99.1FM has been recognized for its commitment to the community.

The National Association of Broadcasters announced the finalists for the 31st Annual Crystal awards and WHKO-FM (K99.1FM) in Dayton was selected.

>> 7 ways K99 makes the community better

The award recognizes radio stations for their outstanding year-round commitment to community service. Ten winners will be selected from the 50 finalists. Winners will be announced at the April 10, 2018 NAB show in Las Vegas. 

Nick Roberts, vice president of marketing and radio operations for Cox Media Group Ohio, said: “Nancy Wilson, Frye Guy, our marketing team and staff are the most dedicated public servants that I’ve ever worked with. K99.1FM on a weekly basis is involved with helping charities around the region, including raising funding for Dayton’s Children’s Hospital, over 4 million to date.”

>> Get to know K99’s Nancy Wilson and Frye Guy

Rob Rohr, market vice president for Cox Ohio said: “Nancy and Frye are not your typical morning show hosts. They are passionate about helping this community and lead by example by rolling up their sleeves and making a huge difference.” 

>> PHOTOS: K99.1FM Cares for Kids Radiothon 2017

James Frye “Frye Guy” and Nancy Wilson have been manning the mics at K99 together since 2010, and there’s no more dynamic duo in country radio. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

About Cox Media Group Ohio 

Cox Media Group Ohio is an integrated broadcasting, publishing and marketing company reaching over 94 percent of the region’s population each week with compelling news and entertainment content. Properties include WHIO-TV Channel 7, the #1 CBS affiliate in America, The Dayton Daily News, K99.1FM Radio and Cox Digital Marketing. Cox owns over 20 products and brands in Dayton and Cincinnati. 

>> K99 Radiothon draws generous donation from Garth Brooks


About NAB 

The National Association of Broadcasters is the premier advocacy association for America’s broadcasters. NAB advances radio and television interests in legislative, regulatory and public affairs. Through advocacy, education and innovation, NAB enables broadcasters to best serve their communities, strengthen their businesses and seize new opportunities in the digital age.

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3 things to know about Dayton’s historic, ‘handsome’ Union Station

Published: Friday, February 23, 2018 @ 6:00 AM

Dayton’s Union Station was the majestic and bustling train hub of the city for decades.

Dayton’s Union Station was the majestic and bustling train hub of the city for decades. 

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Here are three things to know about the historic train station. 

>> Did you know Dayton was declared the cleanest town in America 50 years ago?

1. Described as a “handsome palace” when the train station opened at Sixth and Ludlow Streets in 1900, it was crowned by a seven-story clock tower. 

» READ THE STORY: In its day, Dayton’s Union Station was a “handsome palace”

2. During the first 30 years the new station was open, as many as 66 passenger trains served Dayton daily, according to the Dayton Railway Historical Society website. 

>> These long-gone Dayton landmarks live on in photographs

3. Amtrak, which took over passenger rail services in the county in 1971, continued delivering travelers to Dayton until 1979, when the last passenger train left the station. 

>> See the gravesites of these Dayton dames involved in the city’s most gruesome murders

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Oakwood-raised Oscar nominee featured in Forbes, New York Times and more

Published: Friday, February 23, 2018 @ 6:00 AM

Actress Allison Janney poses with her award for Best Actress for 'I, Tonya' backstage at the BAFTA 2018 Awards in London, Sunday, Feb. 18, 2018. (Photo by Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP)
Joel C Ryan/Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP
Actress Allison Janney poses with her award for Best Actress for 'I, Tonya' backstage at the BAFTA 2018 Awards in London, Sunday, Feb. 18, 2018. (Photo by Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP)(Joel C Ryan/Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP)

Allison Janney was far from the “It Girl” when she started her acting career. 

With a long list of film and television roles under her belt, the Oscar contender and Dayton Hall Walk of fame inductee is certainly the “It Woman” now. 

>> Allison Janney: “Dayton spawns great people”

Favored to win the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her performance as LaVona Golden being pinched by a bird in “I, Tonya,” the Oakwood-raised actress has been featured by nearly every major American news organization in recent weeks. Below are just three examples.

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Allison Janney at the Whitby Hotel in New York, Nov. 16, 2017. The actress, who portrays figure skater Tonya Harding’s tough-as-nails mother in “I, Tonya,” talks about sexual harassment and the unlikely perks of working with fowl.(Allison Michael Orenstein/The New York Times)

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Janney dropped several nuggets about her upbringing in dayton during her interview with Forbes contributor Russ Espinoza.

“It was two brothers growing up in the suburbs of Dayton, Ohio, in a house built by my great grandfather in 1911. A beautiful, big ole brick house with a golden retriever and bunny rabbits and cats and kittens and a menagerie of pets; and brothers who would take my Barbie dolls and take their heads off and make them watch their bodies drown in the sink—and do brotherly things and, you know, hold my legs and arms down and spit on my face and we’d cry and scream. We were all 18 months apart so we were all growing up together and being mean to each other and going to a really small private school called the Miami Valley School in Ohio that was first-through-12th grade—under 300 kids, so a really small school. I don’t think I had a date until I was in college because I went to such a small school. No one really dated. We all just hung out together.

Then I did plays: And my first play was playing Noah Claypole, the undertaker’s son, in “Oliver;” that was my first performance as a young actress. And just doing plays, playing field hockey, going to ballet. I had a pretty happy childhood in Dayton, Ohio. (It was) a pretty, lovely, bucolic setting and pretty beautiful.”

She told the New York Times that playing Golden, who actually was interviewed wearing a fur coat with a bird on her shoulder, was right up her alley. 

(Entertainment Weekly)

The more complicated and twisted the role, the more fun it is to play for me. I love making sense of a hot mess, you know? It’s a lot of fun. It was hard to try to find humanity for [Ms. Golden], it was really hard. But I have empathy for her. I know that she had to come from a terrible environment.

Following her BAFTA Award for her role in “I, Tonya” in London, the star of CBS’s “Mom” met Prince William and his very pregnant wife, Kate Middleton, at the Royal Albert Hall.

She told James Corden about it on his show, “The Late Late Show with James Corden.”

“I did meet Kate and William and she was in her heels and pregnant, so I felt like a bit of a wimp that I was there in my bare feet.”

>> RELATED: Dayton’s Jonathan McNeal shares his can’t-miss movies of the year

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This Dayton mom unwittingly accepted a challenge to take 30 kids to the movies -- and she doesn’t even know them

Published: Friday, February 23, 2018 @ 6:00 AM

Mi'Kel and Samil Pullen. Samil Pullen is taking 30 kids to see the Black Panther Movie.
Photo: Samil Pullen
Mi'Kel and Samil Pullen. Samil Pullen is taking 30 kids to see the Black Panther Movie.(Photo: Samil Pullen)

Samil Pullen is doing something most people would find crazy: taking 30 kids — who she doesn’t even know — to the movies.  

>> Wright State grad plays pivotal role in ‘Black Panther’ movie

Pullen, a program manager at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, dropped $240 on 30 tickets to Marvel’s “Black Panther” and gave the tickets away on Facebook.

Although she didn’t know it at the time, the single mother had accepted the #BlackPantherChallenge.

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Celebrities and everyday people around the country are paying for tickets so that needy children can see the blockbuster movie. The movie’s production was designed by Wright State University and Centerville High School alumna Hannah Beachler.

Accepting the challenge, the Atlanta Hawks hosted a screening for 150 youth and their chaperones Wednesday.  

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New York resident Frederick Joseph started the challenge after raising $40,000 on Gofundme to take Harlem children to see the movie.

The Saturday screen in Huber Heights will be a third viewing for Pullen. With her 13-year-old son Mi’Kel on punishment for his grades and chores, the Dayton native saw the the movie alone the first time and was amazed. 

“After I saw it, I said it is so bigger than him being on punishment,” she said.  

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Pullen said she decided to buy tickets for other children after her son saw the movie, which prompted him to ask questions about African heritage and black history. 

It was only after the movie that Pullen, who took a DNA test a year ago to trace her roots, said that her son wanted to research the African tribe from which her family comes. 

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Pullen’s son also expressed great interest in the movie’s female army. That conversation lead to a discussion about the Dahomey Amazons, an all-female regiment from the former African Kingdom of Dahoney in what is now Benin.

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We were live with a discussion on the cultural and social impact of Marvel's "Black Panther.”

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