Republic, Ohio — Life in Republic, Ohio might have seemed quiet and uneventful in 2020, but as life largely returns to normal, Republic is preparing for an action-packed summer.
For the second year, with a year off in 2020 due to the pandemic, the Scipio-Republic Area Historical Society is hosting the Annual Republic Town Hall Trot 5k to raise funds to restore the Historic Republic Town Hall.
“The Town Hall truly was the center of the Republic community until the late 1900s,” said Donna Hudacek, Town Hall Trot organizer. “We’re hosting this race to make sure the history of this building isn’t forgotten, and that the future of this building is protected.”
At the center of downtown Republic, the Town Hall building stands as a living artifact of days past. Built in 1884, the Republic Town Hall was a center of activity in the community for many years. Countless dinners and holiday dances were hosted in the Hall throughout its 137-year history. After the horrific Baltimore & Ohio train wreck of 1887, the Town Hall hosted the mass funeral to commemorate the victims.
At the turn of the century into the early years of the 1900s, the Town Hall hosted Republic High School graduation ceremonies, and even served as the school for the 1914 and 1915 school years as a new building was being built. And, through the 1950s, local Scipio Township residents would attend traveling shows and performances at the Town Hall in the second floor opera house.
At one time, Republic was considered a shoo-in for the county seat of Seneca County, and despite the small geographic size, Republic area residents are very active in the community.
Once the Town Hall restoration is completed, Hudacek hopes the building will become a renewed cultural center that hearkens back to times past when shows and activity regularly took place at the Town Hall and when people would travel from neighboring communities to visit.
In 2019, the Trot hosted more than 50 participants from around Ohio and raised over $2,000. This year, Dave’s Running in Findlay, Ohio will offer professional timing services to Trot runners.
“Our first Town Hall Trot in 2019 was a huge success. It’s great to see participants so excited about our town’s history,” said Hudacek. “We hope to offer this race for years to come.”
Those interested in participating in the Town Hall Trot can register online at scipiorepublichistory.org. All participants who register before July 24th will receive a free t-shirt, and top finishers will receive a medal.
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