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Local Medina County News

Interactive trail winds its way to Wadsworth

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    Mickey Cochran, maintenance man for Aldi, and Ryan DeMarco, Aldi district manager, attach one of the signs to a wooden pole Wednesday along a path at the Holmesbrook Park.

    ALYSSA ALFANO / GAZETTE

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    Nathan Terhark, Courtney Doles and Tess Rainey, Aldi Northern Ohio district managers, use stencils Wednesday to paint circles onto the path at one of the Born Learning Signs installed at Holmesbrook Park.

    ALYSSA ALFANO / GAZETTE

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    The Aldi team and members of United Way pose Wednesday next to the bench donated by Aldi. It sits next to the lake at Holmesbrook Park.

    ALYSSA ALFANO / GAZETTE

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WADSWORTH — The Born Learning Trail, a nationwide initiative created by the United Way, has made its way to Wadsworth with the help of Aldi grocery stores.

“The idea is that it’s a series of 10 signs,” said Maria Burk, director of Community Impact for United Way of Medina County.

“As people are walking through with their kids and it will say, like, ‘touch your toes’ or ‘what do you see right now’ or ‘what do you hear right now.’ So, it gives them instructions on how to be interactive and help their kids learn about what’s around them.”

Aldi, which has a distribution center in Hinckley, sponsored the trail and paid for much of the supplies. The hope was to have the trail’s location close to a store or distribution center.

The trail signs are found along the half-mile trail at Holmesbrook Park.

The 10 Born Learning Trail signs cost $1,450. A bench inscribed with the Aldi name and logo and the United Way logo cost about $586.

Another $100 was spent on stencils used to paint shapes, letters, a hop scotch board and other items onto the trail path, and the tools and supplies needed to install the trail signs cost about $500.

Aldi sent a team of district managers and maintenance people to the park Wednesday to install the signs.

“It was really generous of them,” Burk said.

The team laughed, joked and judged each other’s painting skills as they used the stencils and even tried to paint some of the stations freehand.

“We want to be present in the community,” said Sam Climer, director of operations for Aldi.

“I think the park just kind of made sense in terms of the location. We just want to give back to the areas that we are invested in as a business.

“We have a number of stores in Medina County and it just kind of lined up nicely. Wadsworth is a pretty recent addition to our division.”

Contact reporter Alyssa Alfano at (330) 721-4063 or aalfano@medina-gazette.com.
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