By PEGGY COURTNEY
Sandusky County Convention & Visitors Bureau
Two years ago, Sandusky County Convention & Visitors Bureau had the idea for a new way to bring tourists into the area while celebrating the rich history of Sandusky County. After the Ohio Turnpike Commission and Ohio History Connection painted a barn on the Ohio Turnpike with the portrait of Rutherford B. Hayes, the Visitors Bureau decided to build a barn trail. In 2016, they hired Barn Artist Scott Hagan to paint historic barns in both Fremont and Gibsonburg. The Fremont barn, located on Christy Road, features the Battle of Fort Stephenson which took place in Fremont during the War of 1812. The barn in Gibsonburg is located on the corner of Ohio 600 and Sandusky County Road 32 and depicts 9-11, the World Trade Center towers and Gibsonburg’s Public Safety Service Memorial logo.
The latest barn can be found headed west on Ohio 20. It’s located just before Woodville at 770 E. Main St. and boasts an image of former Woodville Township resident Tom Henricks, who is a Colonel in the U.S. Air Force and a four-time shuttle astronaut. The barn celebrates the shuttle missions Henricks flew as well as the fact that he is a modern-day piece of history for Woodville.
The Sandusky County Historic Painted Barn Trail ties in with a statewide trail being established by Ohio History Connection. With the statewide trail, a barn in each of the 88 counties in Ohio will be painted with an historic theme specific to that county. Other barns in the statewide barn trail include the Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry barn in Ottawa County, an Annie Oakley barn in Darke County and the Zoar Village bicentennial barn in Tuscarawas County.
The most recent barn painting was made possible by a generous donation from Martin Marietta, the Sandusky County Convention & Visitors Bureau for designing the mural and securing the location, painter Scott Hagan aka “The Barn Artist” and barn owner Scott Nuhfer.
For information on the barn dedication and the Sandusky County Painted Historic Barn Trail, visit sanduskycounty.org or visit the Sandusky County Convention & Visitors Bureau Facebook page.
Peggy Courtney is executive director of Sandusky County Convention & Visitors Bureau, 712 North St., Fremont, 800-255-8070.