Companies bid to replace wheel, make Lanterman’s Mill usable again

It was a Youngstown group's efforts -- selling $76,000 worth of cookbooks -- that helped get it done

Lanterman's Mill, Mill Creek Park, Youngstown

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Mill Creek MetroParks received two bids Wednesday to replace the wheel at Lanterman’s Mill — but a lot of money separates the two.

The low bid came from B.E. Hassett Millwrights of Louisville, Kentucky, which specializes in windmill and watermill repairs. Its bid was $182,500.

The high bid was $322,000 from The Ruhlin Company near Medina, Ohio.

Youngstown’s Bobbi Allen couldn’t contain her enthusiasm about the mill being repaired. It was her group’s cookbook — Recipes of Youngstown — that helped get it done.

“It’s so exciting. This is just, I’m happy,” Allen said.

She led the group that created the book, which, to date, has generated $76,000 to fix the Lanterman’s Mill wheel so that grain can again be ground into flour.

Her thoughts on the two bids?

“I think one is crazy and the other one is more in line to what we were looking at.”

It’s been three and a half years since the cookbook first became an idea and two years since the first check was turned over to the park.

“My husband’s a technician, so he told me this is not going to be easy. When he saw it, he said there’s a lot of things that have to be done,” Allen said.

Mill Creek’s Operations Manager Steve Avery said once the contract is awarded, the initial work will be done in a shop where they’ll find the right pieces of timber and build the parts.

The actual work in the mill won’t begin until the season is over in December.

Ryan Ferrebee and Ann Rock spent part of their Wednesday afternoon around the mill. Ferrebee was glad to hear it will be fixed.

“I think that’s great. I think anything they can do to reinstate anything that the park has lost over the years is awesome,” he said.

Allen said it’s important.

“This is something we all wanted, so it was real easy for people to donate and to help us out,” she said.

The new wheel will be built and operated like the original 1800s technology.


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