Wednesday, June 30, 2010

FOX19 Press Release: Frank Marzullo Named Blog Czar

Have you ever seen the movie Anchorman? It is a classic for those in the television news business, who long for the day when the local anchorman or anchorwoman would give you the days news then spend there evenings buying new suits, having supper, and watching baseball games!! ( Wait you mean those days are over? ) Wow, I got into this business about 10 years to late!

With that said, new technology and progress allows us to interact with you more than ever before at About 5 months ago we here on the FOX19 Morning News started this Morning News Blog. This is a place where Rob, Sheila, Meghan, Sara, and myself can share news on community events, discuss the days top stories, and share some personal stories with you about our thoughts on our city. However, as of late many of us have been slow to update the blog.

Those days are now over, as I have been appointed Morning News Blog Czar, by new FOX19 News Director Matt Miller. " We are very excited about this new opportunity for Frank, we feel that his energy, passion, and ability to spend more time on You-Tube then anyone else at the station will allow him to keep our Morning News Blog current and up to date", Miller says.

So, while I joke most of the time, this is actually no joke, I have really been put in charge of making sure my co-workers update this blog with fresh content every single day. So I have assigned my co-anchors each a day where it is there responsibility to update it by 7am, so this guarantees we will be current. I will then be held accountable if they do not get it done, so yes I am the Blog Czar. All I ask is respect and commitment, which I know 3 of the 4 them will give me, but one co-worker decided to slack on his first day. I was shocked to get a e-mail from my boss saying the blog was not updated yesterday. Guess whose day it was? You got it, ROB WILLIAMS! He was blogging about something he did Saturday, but still found other things to do then update his blog. This is unacceptable I told Rob, he is letting you all down! I will now have to watch over him and makesure he gets his updates done. Maybe, he should not spend as much time running and looking at With that said, he promises from this point on to make sure he updates properly on his day.

So I hope you enjoy our postings and continue to interact with us right here on I take my new post very seriously, but I just realized I am not getting any extra cash for my new post.

All The Best....FOX19 Blog Czar Frank Marzullo

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Tuckers Restaurant in OTR

I have heard of Tuckers, but never been until recently.
Hey it's Rob. Tuckers is located in the 1600 block of Vine Street. It's just east of Findlay Market. The restaurant has been around since 1946. I decided to give it try this past Saturday after running with a friend who is training me for the Columbus Marathon.

I walked into Tuckers and noticed it's not that big. Then you notice this place is a joint in the best possible way. Nothing fancy. Just great food and friendly service and a flat top grill full of a variety of breakfast items.

I decided to have the pancakes and grits. Our server was friendly and fast. We did have to wait a little for food, but it was worth it. The pancakes are thick, fluffy pillows of carbohydrates. The grits were creamy like polenta, but with attitude. I left there feeling full and satisfied but disappointed. Slightly upset that it took me so long to find a place GQ Magazine said was one of the best diners in the county.
Tuckers is open 9am to 3pm Monday through Saturday and Sundays from 10am to 2pm.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Not Just a Walk in the Woods

I've been hiking before, but not like this. Hi it's Meghan:)

My friend is a avid hiker/climber and he's talked about his adventures. This past weekend I went with him to Red River Gorge. It was fun yet scary.

We hiked for close to 4 hours and climbed to an elevation of 1,700 feet. Oh and we weren't on the main trails! I guess there are side trials that only the experienced hikers know about. We were scaling rocks and squeezing through caves.

I defiantly didn't expect that level of hiking but I loved it and the views were amazing. I can't wait to go back.

But not sure if it'll be anytime soon. By now you've probably heard that a bear attacked a hiker there the same weekend I was walking the trails. Luckily all I saw was a lizard and a squirrel:) Hopefully the catch the bear soon!

(I'm super sweaty in the picture..what a workout!)

Some Things I Believe

I believe people come into your life when you need them. And it works in reverse, you are put into others' lives for a reason.

Sheila here. Teachers are some of those people. I am so fortunate to have learned from first grade through college from very smart, very kind, and inspiring teachers. I caught up with one of them recently. Steve Weadock was my Civics teacher my senior year at Sidney High School. Sometime during that year, my classmates and I dubbed him Wead, and most of us still call him by that nickname to this day.

Wead had one of those smiles that would light up a room. He also had passion for his subject. He didn't just teach us about government, he was involved in it. He was the president of the teachers' union for many years, and he is still involved in the democratic party in his hometown. He made learning about politics and government interesting and fun, and what I learned from him is part of the education foundation I use today in my job as a journalist. Wead also cared deeply for his students, and many of them remain friends with him today. He has 1,110 friends on Facebook!

I also believe true friends are never really apart. Things they bring to your life stay with you over distance and time. Wead said it best the other day after we spent an hour catching up without a second's lapse in the conversation. He said, "this is the mark of a true friend, when years go by, and you can sit and talk as if you were never apart."

Wead fought a big bout with cancer a few years ago, and he won. It changed the way he looks at life. He is more grateful now, and I get the impression he enjoys things a lot more. Unfortunately, the cancer is back. I was a little worried about what I would find when I went to visit him, but he looks amazingly good for a man who's going through chemotherapy. He's pretty thin, but that smile, that welcoming, amazing smile is still there.

My teacher is still teaching. A minister asked him not long ago whether he was "good with eternity." Steve told him, "I'm fine with eternity, but I'm not ready to give up my friends and my stuff!" So he's doing some renovating around the house, he drives half an hour away to take care of his 93-year old mother, he still goes to political functions and writes letters to the editor, and he keeps up his friendships. He's not giving up.

I also believe in the power of prayer. I'm not going to go all religious here. Suffice it say, in my work as an interviewer and in my personal life, I've seen prayer work miracles. When he wrote on his Facebook page that the cancer was back, his friends started posting and sending up prayers.

Wead doesn't do sappy. Hearing a lot of sentiment about how much he means to people makes him uncomfortable, so I hope he won't think my thoughts here are too sappy. I'll just end with a request. If you get a minute, and you are so inclined, send up a prayer for Wead. He still has so much to teach us.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Find Us on Facebook!

I feel a bit like Sybil. Remember the 70's movie, starring Sally Field? I was too young to be allowed to watch it, but I had a friend who was, so I knew it was about a woman with multiple personalities.

Sheila here.
Quick story. When I first started out in broadcasting in Charleston, West Virginia, I had a different last name. It was my maiden name, which is not Gray. But my boss at the time thought it was a name radio listeners wouldn't trust, so he asked me to change it. He's the one who came up with Gray.

When I got married, I took my husband Ric's last name, and for years I've introduced myself based on the situation, e.g. if I'm at my daughter Katie's school, I say my name is Sheila Robinson. If it's a work situation, I'm Sheila Gray. It can be confusing! People ask me why I don't use Robinson on the air or why I don't make Gray my legal name, or even why I don't go back to my maiden name, but that would be just as confusing! I've been working with this name so long, people all over the country with whom I've worked or come in contact know me this way. I like having the same name as my husband and kids, so I keep Robinson for my private life.

So now the confusion extends to Facebook. I've had a page since last year, but it was something I kept for myself, to stay connected with family and friends. This week I opened up a new page for Fox 19. I have to admit it's making me a little crazy to keep track of two, but it's such a great way to make contact with people, I will weather through it. So send me your friend requests, and in the meantime, you can call me Sybil.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Fireworks Friday at Florence Freedom

Sheila here.
Fox 19 is the proud sponsor of several Fireworks Fridays at the Florence Freedom games, and I checked out my first one of the season Friday night with my husband Ric and our son Eric.
If you've never been to a Freedom Game, you're missing out. It's a great way to see baseball "up close and personal." Champion Windows Field is a smaller venue, but it's new, clean, and family friendly. You feel almost as if you're on the field with the players! It's also a great opportunity to see some very talented ballplayers before they hit the big time.

You need to go early if you're bringing the whole family. Check out my little slugger, hitting the Kids Zone for batting practice. Boys and girls can also practice their pitching, climb on the playground equipment, and bounce around in an inflatable. Eric had a blast before the game.
We sat right behind the visiting team's dugout, so he got up close and personal with the Freedom's mascots, Liberty and Belle, too. He thought it was hilarious when they pretended to eat his candy and drink his water.
Freedom games are a lot easier on your wallet than the big leagues too. Single game seats start at just seven dollars for the lawn or nine dollars reserved. The snacks and drinks are pretty affordable too. Often you can get freebies from the game sponsors, like the dinosaur bobbleheads and baseballs all fans received from the Creation Museum, and lots of prizes are up for grabs during the game.
Fox 19 will sponsor Fireworks Friday's throughout the summer on July 9 and 30, along with August 13 and 27. Hope to see you there!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Awesome Abs Anyone??

A friend invited me to workout out at FitNext at the corner of 14th and Liberty. I wanted to say no, but for some reason I said, "sure."

Hey guys. Its me Rob. I've been away for a while, but I'm back.
I wanted to say no because it was an "abs only" class at 8 in the morning. That's seems early especially the morning after the Reds game that went extra innings and had a fireworks show afterwards.

FitNext is a a personal training and group fitness studio run and owned by Cris Smith. My friend Eric swears by him. On his website bio his training philosophy states, "Don't look to me for sympathy." He was tough and funny. When we started dragging, Cris kept saying, "You guys are starting to feel sorry for yourselves. Pick it up." The abs class lasted an hour. It was tough. If you're looking to work on your core, I think this class could help.

You can find out more at his website or email him at BTW I usually hate group fitness classes. This one I liked. Not too crowded and the instructor isn't constantly yelling at you. The timing is perfect for you to check out Cris and FitNext.

Yo Deal!

A new online savings site helps you save some cash and helps local charities.

Sheila here.
It's pretty simple. Yo! Deal offers one great deal per day for things to eat, see, buy and do in Cincinnati. At the same time the site helps raise money for local schools, hospitals or charities by donating 10% of every deal to the featured cause.

The local chapter of the Make A Wish Foundation benefits now through June 20th. You can find things like a day of bowling for five bucks, half price gift cards for local restaurants like Hugo, or discounts on the LM&M railroad. There's a new deal every day at
Save away!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Covington Block Party

This Saturday, Covington will be the place to be. Hi it's Meghan:)

RoeblingFest will begin at 11 am and end with fireworks
shortly after nightfall. It's being held at the foot of the suspension bridge to raise money for repairs to the 144 year old landmark. About 300 thousand dollars is still needed.

Look for a petting zoo, tricycle and Segway races for adults, a moon-bounce, a corn-hole tourney, a dunking booth, face painting, and a farmer’s market. Entertainment will include several bands, karaoke, and bag pipers.

If your interested in learning....there will be guided tours of the bridge, the Roebling flood wall murals, and the statues along Riverside Drive.

A Driver's Mother

My name is Sheila, and I'm a control freak.

I'm also a crier, and both of those qualities contributed to the monstrous tears which welled up in my eyes this week when my baby girl drove out of the garage alone for the first time. Katie got her driver's license.

It was as if her whole life flashed before my eyes. Rocking her to sleep, seeing her take her first steps, her first trip on the school bus, learning to read, getting her braces on (and off), killing a serve on her middle school volleyball team, walking into high school for the first time, and seeing her on stage in the school play for the first time. I have been there to see all of it, but after she drove down the street by herself for the first time, I couldn't see her at all.

I cried, and I prayed. Then the control freak took over, wondering if she was going where she told me she was, would she remember how to get there, and what about all of those other faceless drivers out on the roads with her? It's terrifying for that control freak.

For the crier, it's bittersweet. I love seeing the young woman my Katie is becoming, but I miss that baby I held and rocked, and I miss that little child who sang all day long, and loved to have tea parties and go shopping. She still loves shopping, and now tea at the Cincinnatian or the Netherland is more her style, but she'll always be my baby. Especially when she's driving away.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Our Day with the Ducks

Want to tour historic Riverside Drive, peek inside Great American Ballpark, get up close to the World Peace Bell, and splash down in the Ohio River all in one trip? Ride the Ducks!

Sheila here.
We took a "quack-tackular" family trip on Newport's Ride the Ducks tour. The Ducks are amphibious vehicles based on the famous World War II designs which can travel both on land and in the water. I first experienced a trip on one while visiting my brother in Boston, and I was thrilled when the attraction arrived here in the tri-state.
As you board the Duck at Newport on the Levee, your tour guide hands you a quacker, and it's quite a sound when everyone on the vehicle quacks at passers-by. The Duck tour takes you into downtown Cincinnati for a splash-down in the Ohio River with the song "Rollin' on the River" playing on the loud speakers. While our tour guide pointed out well know landmarks like the Roebling Suspension Bridge and the Serpentine Wall, she filled us in on the history of Cincinnati and Newport, highlighting facts like Cincinnati being home to the nation's first Major League baseball team, to our area's involvement in the Underground Railroad, and our ties to America's Steamboat heritage.
It's great fun with a little education at the same time. Our Duck was filled with tourists from Michigan to Illinois along with a few of us locals. Ride the Ducks runs daily from its location at Newport on the Levee, and you can find the ticket booth right outside of the aquarium. It's a great way to see our hometown from a whole new angle! You can find out more by logging onto

Friday, June 4, 2010

An All Star Among Us

Hi, it's Sheila.
I told you back in March about a local woman who's up for PEOPLE's All Stars Among Us, and now she's one of three finalists. Cincinnati native Tracie Metzger formed the Pink Ribbon Girls breast cancer support group.

Tracie was diagnosed with breast cancer when she was only 30 years old.
She writes: "At the time I had 2 children under the age of 3 and felt like I had to be the only young woman dealing with this. I felt scared, alone and like no one else could relate to all of the things I was feeling and thinking. Luckily for me, I caught my breast cancer early and my prognosis was very good. I went through 6 months of intense chemotherapy, lost all my hair and had a double mastectomy with reconstruction. During that time I longed to connect with other young survivors who were going through all of the things I was."

But at that time, no group offered specific support for younger women battling breast cancer, so Tracie and two other young survivors founded the Pink Ribbon Girls. She says, "Pink Ribbon Girls offers young women support during and after their treatments, an outlet to express fears and concerns and an opportunity to find strength through shared experiences."

Tracie is one of three inspiring women who are nominated to represent the Cincinnati Reds in the All Stars Among Us program. You can vote for her take the field with the Reds on June 11 by logging onto

And if you want to learn more about the Tracie's Pink Ribbon Girls, log onto

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Grande Dame of the Sea

Memorial Day Weekend was a memorable getaway for me.

Good morning, it's Sara Celi.

Once again, I found myself in sunny SoCal, but it will be my last visit there for awhile. So, naturally, Sean and I had to make this one count.

One of the things we did was visit the Queen Mary. She's docked in Long Beach and open daily for public tours. We'd both talked about seeing this historic cruise ship, but wanted to wait until a warm day to make the trip.

Saturday proved the perfect choice. Sean and I spend the afternoon walking the ships grand decks, exploring her art deco beauty, and lunching in the dining room where the famous and rich used to take their meals. If you don't know her history, the Queen Mary launched in 1936, and was considered by may to be "the only way to travel". She sailed the world for more than 40 years before docking in Long Beach. As you walk around the ship, you get the distinct smell of antique wood mixed with salty sea air.

She's a gorgeous ship, and a must see.

Plus, there's a pretty good ghost tour that takes you through the bowls and furnaces on board. It's not for the easily scared, but it's fun.

Cheap Books and Records!

Entertainment for 50 cents sounds like a pretty good deal, right?

Sheila here.
This Sunday the Hamilton County Public Library will kick off its Library Friends' used book sale. It offers amazingly low prices on books, DVDs, CDs, and record albums. There are literally thousands upon thousands of great reads for your home library, just in time for some poolside relaxation. You can also choose from more than 5,000 vinyl records on sale for just $1! There's something for everyone.

Proceeds from the sales provide additional funding needed for library programs, materials, and support. Our library was recently named one of the best in the U.S.A., and these funds will help our friends keep up with the increasing demand for its services.

The Library Friends' Used Book Sale runs from Sunday, June 6 through Friday, June 11. On that last day, you can buy a Friends' shopping bag for just $10 dollars, and fill it up with whatever you want! Just head to the Main Library downtown on Vine Street and grab a deal. You can find out more about the times and what's available at

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Memorial Day Weekend

Good Morning Everyone, Weatherman Frank Here, I hope you all had a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend. Of course, the true purpose of this holiday to honor the men and women who have served us and we will always be thankful. Over the years it has also become a weekend to spend with family and friends and to unofficially kick off summer. Well, Mother Nature with all of her heat and humidity has also welcomed summer a tad early this year. I spent the muggy weekend up North with my family and seeing old friends. It brought back so many memories, in my hometown of Chagrin Falls, Ohio each memorial day weekend we would have our Blossom Time Festival, a parade and a run, all along the wonderful Chagrin River.

As many of you probably did this weekend when hanging with family, we did a lot of eating. What was your favorite dish this weekend? On Sunday my family had a fantastic BBQ, where we spent time with my uncle who served our country and I also got to see my cousins who I have not see in awhile and my aunt who was up from Florida. My dad broke out the BBQ and made the largest chickens I have ever seen, we could of made several meals out of these chickens, in between the Bocce Ball games and interesting family conversation it was a great afternoon. One of those conversations turned to Halloween costumes when we were young kids, I brought up the fact that one year I chose a very interesting Halloween costume. My brothers were Mickey Mouse and Pinocchio and so I wanted to be Geppetto, yeah I know what kid says I want to be Geppetto?? I did I guess, so after the conversation I went down into the basement and searched for the picture for proof, so here ya go.

Even Mr. Benson took part in the fun, he loves my parents backyard because he can run free, and he also got a bit tired so he took sometime to soak in the sunshine. All in all it was the perfect kick off to summer, now I just need to hit the gym heavy this week and really for the rest of the summer, but for some reason I am already thinking of my next meal.