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The yellow brick road paves way to a new past

Purchase commemorative bricks for a good cause
Purchase commemorative bricks for a good cause
Photograph taken by Danielle Coots

There is no place like home in the community of Bellbrook and like each home, family treasures are stored in a special place. In Bellbrook, that place is the Bellbrook Historical Society. With ambitions of expanding the museum’s education programs to making the museum home for more family treasures of the past and present, the museum is paving a path for the future with the purchase of commemorative, personalized bricks. The museum trustees are excited to announce the museum’s first fundraiser.

Sample of a commemorative brick
Photograph taken by Danielle Coots

The donations rose for the “Follow the Yellow Brick Road-Pave a path for the future of your beloved museum” will be used for painting, needed repairs, restore windows, but most importantly an educational expansion program.

On Saturday morning, the museum received a special letter with a special donation. “I wrote to Erma Bombeck’s family and told them about the bricks,” Bellbrook Museum trustee, Janis Stratis said. “Her family bought two bricks in honor of her memory, so that is very exciting.”

The personalized bricks will be installed in the fall of 2014 and will be placed at the side entrance on the museum grounds. Should the commemorative bricks exceed the side entrance, the engraved bricks will enhance The Wright Iris Garden located in the rear of the museum, maintained and developed by the Bellbrook Garden Club.

“We would like to do a program expansion. Right now, we have a third grade program each spring where we take all the third graders from Bellbrook elementary schools for a walking tour of the town and museum,” Bellbrook Museum President, Dwight Bartlett said. “We would like to be able to expand that educational aspect of the program to include adults.”

Ordering the engraved commemorative bricks couldn’t be easier. Visit the website at, complete the online form, print it out and submit with the donation payment either by mail or in person. The donations are set up to honor friends and family, for a remembrance or to memorialize loved ones, to endorse businesses or clubs or for special occasions or a gift. The possibilities are endless, because there is no place like home in Bellbrook.

“We had a young lady come in the other day with her boyfriend from North Carolina who was coming home for a visit and she wanted to show him where she grew up, which was Bellbrook, so they came here,” said the museum curator, Janet Allison. “She had also participated in the third grade tour.”

Bartlett enjoys hearing museum visitors recall their 3rd grade experience, while touring the museum after adulthood. “It’s nice to know that you made a lasting impression on someone’s life,” Bartlett said.

The Bellbrook Museum is also paving the way also for the future. Trustees are dedicated to restore and preserve Bellbrook’s history in a fashion that keeps up with the times. Ultimately, through digital technology, they are currently working on building their website to be more of a virtual museum, with the help of donations from the local Lion’s Club.

For more information or questions, contact Janis Stratis, Historical Museum Trustee, a or contact Don Buzek at (937)848-4666 or email at

To order a brick, visit the Bellbrook Historical Museum website at

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