Walking through the streets of downtown Hartville, the small-town feel, vintage shops and the strong sense of a close knit community may strike you in awe.

Walking through the streets of downtown Hartville, the small-town feel, vintage shops and the strong sense of a close knit community may strike you in awe.

This has never been more true than during the final Second Saturday event on Sept. 13.

“Here, we have the ability to have everybody get to know everybody and I think it makes (people) happy and drives a sense of purpose,” said Emilie Ketcham, owner of Two E’s In A Pod. “Not only are we doing this because we want to bring people downtown and show them what our downtown has to offer, but on top of that, it builds a sense of community and Hartville is such a community driven area.”

 Ketcham, alongside Modern Vintage owner Tara Wiederman and Best Bib and Tucker owner Megan Wise, is a catalyst for the four Second Saturday celebrations which started in June.

“(Hartville) has a really good feel and we all just want to do our part in making sure that we get it back and get it better than what it was” said Wiederman.

A huge part of the event was the celebration of Hartville’s heritage. This year, the Hartville Elevator turns 105.

“Step in the Hartville Elevator and you feel like you’ve been transported to 150 years ago,” said Wise.

The Hartville Chocolate Factory also hit a milestone this year when it celebrated its 30th anniversary.

 “I think everybody likes chocolate in one form or another. If they don’t like chocolate candy, there’s milk and pudding and cookies and cake and it goes on and on and on,” said owner Mary Barton. “My mother used to make chocolate at home before we ever started here. When we came, the community welcomed us and they continue to support us.”

Barton recalls a time when large celebrations such as these were prevalent.

“When we have events like this, we have a lot of people comment and say that they love it so much because this is how it used to be,” Barton said. “It used to be gatherings downtown for everybody and they miss that.”

Other merchants such as Dan McDevitt, owner of the Hartville Tool Exchange, helped with the event. McDevitt says he is the great-, great-, great-grandson of Andrew Myer, who was one of the first settlers in Summit County.

McDevitt enjoyed sharing historical artifacts he’s stored with incoming customers.

“We’ve lost so many beautiful, beautiful buildings in Stark County over the years and we need to preserve what’s left and make it economically prosperous” said McDevitt.

Other huge parts of the celebration included the performance by Harry Canary, a car show, a judged karaoke contest, Lake Township Historical Society wagon rides and a Hartville’s Best Pie Contest. Contestants Brynn McKenney and Selah McKenney walked away as the pie contest winners, earning accolades for their southern bourbon pecan pie.

Profits from slices sold by the contestants in the pie contest benefited the Lake FISH food pantry.

Wise, Ketcham, and Wiederman hope to bring back the summer celebrations starting next year in June. All events happen during the second Saturday of each month starting in June and ending in September.