Kidron Days June 9 and 10

There is a lot going on with the Kidron Merchants Friday and Saturday in Kidron. There are discounts, prizes and a good time. So, stop by all of the merchants in Kidron those days, particularly the Heritage Center because the Kidron Community Historical Society is now a full fledged member of the Kidron Merchants and will be having discounts, prizes and specials on some of our items. Plus, the weather will be nice and warm.


At the Sonnenberg Village Welcome Center (Old Sonnenberg Church) two Professors of German, Michael Putnam and Richard Page, and two students in their German program, spent three days interviewing Swiss German speakers.  The Professors and students were from Penn State University.

Over the three days in one hour time slots 30 people were interviewed and were recording speaking Swiss German. Six more potential Swiss speakers were unable to attend. Four were farming and two were unable to attend due to illness.

The Professors intend to return in the future to interview those people who could not attend this session.

Sonnenberg Arboretum and Grounds

arboretumraisedbedFor Arbor Day, volunteers planted another eight trees in the Sonnenberg Arboretum. Since then they have cleaned the Geiser Interlude Garden, the Butterfly Garden and the Rain Garden. The last project for the spring is the restructuring of the Heritage Heirloom Garden. The plans include raised garden beds and new fencing.


Bixler interiorWork continues on the 1832 Sommer/Bixler House. Windows on the first floor have been installed and doorways famed. Framing has been added to the rest of the first floor to accomodate electric, insulation and dry wall, but leaving exposed part of each of the original beams.  We expect flooring for the second floor to arrive by mid-June so that we can continue on to frame the second floor.


With a thank you to Steiner Trenching and Kidron Electric we are happy to report that three more buildings have electrical wiring in place.  The Sauer Blacksmith Shop, the Bixler House and the storage facility all have powered electrical panels installed.  We also have a light installed in the overflow parking lot.

Shortly, we will begin wiring the Blacksmith Shop and the Bixler House for lights and electrical outlets. We are moving closer to each building being for rent.


eggs in a nest While we were planting some new trees in the Sonnenberg Arboretum, we found some new (potential) residents in one of the Canaan Fir trees which we had planted last year. Photo by Christina McCune, Dalton Gazette.


The last performance of the 2017 series will be Mercy River. Be prepared to forget about your daily problems; the sound of pure southern gospel will uplift you.  The message that Mercy River brings bridges all generations and uplifts all who want to hear their message that God still lives and is caring for us. Once you meet and hear Mercy River you will know why they are one of the best southern gospel groups of the Midwest.

There will not be an admission charge. But, a freewill offering will be collected afterwards for the mission work of Mercy River.  Bring your relatives, friends and neighbors and be prepared to be uplifted.


The Heritage Center will reopen tomorrow, Friday April 1st, for the season.  We hope that you stop in to see us while you are in Kidron shopping or visiting family.  We would love to see you and have you visit with us.

Just a reminder, this will be the last year for the Village of Jericho exhibit. Next year, our exhibit will feature the founding of Kidron which is the third in the series of Villages leading up to 2019 and the 200th anniversary of our founders arriving from the Bern area of Switzerland and settling the area around the current location of Sonnenberg Village. They named the area after their homeland, Sonnenberg, Switzerland.

Work in Sonnenberg Village resumes

Bixler House window repairs

Bixler House window repairs

As the weather briefly improved in February we decided to take advantage of an offer by Steiner Trenching to run conduit underground from the Welcome Center to the Bixler House, the Blacksmith Shop, the storage shed and the light pole in the overflow parking area. Kidron Electric will complete electric lines to those buildings when the weather improves on a more permanent basis.

Meanwhile, John Fielitz, Cliff Lehman, Dan Miller and Ray Leisy have started work on new frames and repair of the original sash and doors for the Bixler House. Again, when the weather improves on a more permanent basis, we will begin the installation of the windows, doors and flooring in the Bixler House.  They have turned the basement of the Welcome Center into a wood working and paint shop for the project.


Professor William McDaniel

Prof. William McDaniel

Prof. William McDaniel

We are very pleased to announce that Professor William McDaniel will speak on April 19th at 1:30 pm in the Welcome Center of Sonnenberg Village.  His topic will be the history and future of Black Jazz.

Professor McDaniel is Professor Emeritus of The Ohio State University. A specialist in African-American music and jazz performance, he is noted for his analysis of John Coltrane and Charlie Parker. He has published several works on black music and more than 300 musical arrangements.

Black music has often served as the barometer of the times and lives of black people. This program, utilizing recorded music, explores the various aspects and periods of black history by examining the music of each era. It ranges from the work songs and spirituals of slavery through the rap of modern urban times.

The program of Professor McDaniel  is sponsored by the Ohio Humanities Council and Sonnenberg Village and is free and open to the public.