Of course, finding great single people locally was not the hard part for About — it was slowing them down long enough for us to gain a little insight into their busy lives.
Find out who probably won’t challenge you to the Triple Atomic Wing Challenge at Quaker Steak and Lube anytime soon, who could throw you or just as easily as get to know you — and who is not impressed with your word-of-the-day dictionary.
Curious? Then turn off your cell phone and check out the pages that follow as we introduce you to About magazine’s 2011 choices for Stark County’s most eligible singles: Justin Allen, Erin Chaido, Ryan Humbert, Stephen McNulty, Mia Morning, Kelley Palone, Brian Rogers, Ryan Skibicki and Julie Vega.
Sense of humor required.
SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHER/PROFESSIONAL MIXED MARTIAL ARTIST (CAGE FIGHTER)
NICKNAME: My friends have called me “B-Rog” for as long as I can remember. In MMA, my stage name is “The Predator” because of my long hair, dreads and fighting style.
I’M AFRAID OF: Disappointing my family and friends, and death before I accomplish all of my goals in life — dying young or dying old with regrets.
BIGGEST TURN-ON: Women into fitness, and hot redheads! They’re like unicorns. Some people don’t think they’re real, but if you catch one, you better hold on to it and not let it go.
BIGGEST TURN-OFF: Girls at the bar with a beer gut and a size 0 shirt over it.
MY WORST HABIT: Procrastination, forgetfulness and clutter. I’m always in a rush between school and the gym, and if I don’t put it in my iPhone, it doesn’t get done.
I’M OBSESSED WITH: Apple products, bully breed dogs and mixed martial arts.
MY BEST FEATURE: My dimples and my freckles. They work hand and hand together.
MY FAVORITE PLACE IN STARK COUNTY: Jose’s Landing. It’s a small bar with great owners, clients and music.
SOMETHING I LEARNED IN COLLEGE NOT IN A BOOK: Relationships will help carry you in life. If you have an awesome supporting cast of family and friends, you can accomplish everything much easier.
WHEN I WAS A KID: I wrote a book in the third grade on how I was going to play in the NFL and be a veterinarian in the offseason.
FIVE YEARS FROM NOW, I EXPECT TO BE: Hopefully still competing in mixed martial arts at a high level and reaping the rewards from that. However, I still plan to be actively working in education and trying to help students and giving them the support I had while growing up.
FAVORITE CHICK FLICK: “Sex in the City.” I used to watch the shows and I’ve seen both the movies. Yes, I know it’s weird.
MY DREAM JOB: Full-time professional fighter and start an animal shelter that caters to bully breeds.
FAVORITE FOOD: Fish fillet from McDonalds!
IF I’D KNOWN THEN WHAT I KNOW NOW: I would have stayed at Walsh University a fifth year and soaked the college experience up a bit more, instead of hustling through to be done in four years.
MARKETING COORDINATOR FOR BUCKINGHAM, DOOLITTLE & BURROUGHS
THE PERFECT DATE: Dinner and good conversation.
DATE DEAL-BREAKER: Incessant cell phone use.
I’M OBSESSED WITH: Shoes.
I’M AFRAID OF: Geese.
BIGGEST TURN-ON: Intelligence.
BIGGEST TURN-OFF: Narcissism.
MY CURRENT RINGTONE: Vibrate.
PEOPLE WOULD BE SURPRISED TO KNOW I: Use my second bedroom as a closet.
MY WORST HABIT: Procrastination.
MY BEST FEATURE: I’ve been told it’s my cheekbones.
MY FAVORITE PLACE IN STARK COUNTY: 91 or Piccano’s.
WHEN I WAS A KID, I WANTED TO BE A: Professional soccer player.
FIVE YEARS FROM NOW, I EXPECT TO BE: A better golfer.
DESCRIBE A DATING DISASTER: We went sled riding and I hit a tree.
FAVORITE CHICK FLICK: “Pretty Woman.”
FAVORITE FOOD: Pasta.
PET PEEVE: When drivers fail to use their blinkers.
SOMETHING I CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT: Cell phone.
MY HOBBIES: Traveling, reading, attempting golf.
IF I’D KNOWN THEN WHAT I KNOW NOW: I would have had more fun.
CREATIVE DIRECTOR WEB, INNIS MAGGIORE
NICKNAME: “Jetty”, aka – “Jetty Jet Rocket.”
THE PERFECT DATE: A good connection … without it — any perfectly planned first date will only be a first date.
DATE DEAL-BREAKER: Smoker.
I’M AFRAID OF: Rejection — who isn’t?
BIGGEST TURN-ON: Someone who takes care of themself physically and mentally. I’d like to meet someone who can go for a run with me once in a while or go for a hike on the trail.
BIGGEST TURN-OFF: People that think they are better than others. Love thy neighbor as you love yourself.
MY CURRENT RINGTONE: Don’t have one.
MY BEST FEATURE: Kindness, I’m kind and treat others the way I’d like to be treated.
MY FAVORITE PLACE IN STARK COUNTY: North Canton YMCA.
WHEN I WAS A KID, I WANTED TO BE A: NHL hockey player or architect.
FIVE YEARS FROM NOW, I EXPECT TO BE: Enjoying life even more than I am today.
FAVORITE CHICK FLICK: “Titanic.”
MY DREAM JOB: Still trying to figure that out.
FAVORITE FOOD: I’ll eat almost anything.
PET PEEVE: Chewing with your mouth open.
SOMETHING I CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT: Exercising.
MY HOBBIES: Reading, guitar, exercising, running, snowboarding, wakeboarding, surfing, hiking, playing video games, etc.
IF I’D KNOWN THEN WHAT I KNOW NOW: I would do some things a little bit differently.
THE PERFECT DATE: As much as I enjoy being the center of attention on stage, I prefer to be a lot more low-key offstage. Dinner at a locally owned restaurant followed by checking out local attractions, culture or historic spots always sounds good to me.
DATE DEAL-BREAKER: Poor manners.
I’M OBSESSED WITH: Puma shoes, “24,” Sonic slushies, peanut butter-filled pretzels and sushi.
I’M AFRAID OF: I’m not super fond of heights. Sometimes I’m OK and sometimes I’m scared to death. That, and Nancy Grace. She frightens me.
MY IDEAL CELEBRITY SPOUSE WOULD BE: I’ve always had a thing for Sheryl Crow. She’s smart and super-talented. I saw her play the accordion once, and she even managed to make that look sexy!
BIGGEST TURN-ON: Outgoing, with brains and a sense of humor.
BIGGEST TURN-OFF: Smoking and messiness.
PEOPLE WOULD BE SURPRISED TO KNOW I: Was once a black belt in karate when I was about 14 or so. I’ve since forgotten most of it, though.
MY WORST HABIT: In some situations, I tend to be a bit of a control freak.
MY BEST FEATURE: My sense of humor and friendliness.
MY FAVORITE PLACE IN STARK COUNTY: My grandparents’ house. My grandpa built it himself in 1957, and it’s always so warm and inviting. I also love the history and feeling of downtown Canton.
SOMETHING I LEARNED IN COLLEGE NOT IN A BOOK: Kindness and a smile go a long way.
WHEN I WAS A KID, I WANTED TO BE AN: Architect or illustrator.
FIVE YEARS FROM NOW, I EXPECT TO BE: A major rock star! :)
FAVORITE CHICK FLICK: “Fried Green Tomatoes.”
SOMETHING I CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT: My Gibson guitars.
MY HOBBIES: Biking, hiking, concerts, music, art, movies, reading, being outdoors.
CURATOR AT THE JOSEPH SAXTON GALLERY OF PHOTOGRAPHY, CONSERVATION PHOTOGRAPHER, AND STUDENT OF BIOSECURITY AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CANTERBURY IN CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND
THE PERFECT DATE: Shopping at an open air market and cooking together.
DATE DEAL-BREAKER: If she asks when I’m going to cut my hair.
I’M OBSESSED WITH: Wildlife and conservation.
I’M AFRAID OF: Sarah Palin.
MY IDEAL TV OR CELEBRITY SPOUSE WOULD BE: Bree from “Desperate Housewives”
BIGGEST TURN-ONS: Ambition and intelligence.
BIGGEST TURN-OFFS: Sorority girls in North Face jackets.
MY WORST HABIT: Quoting movies (poorly).
MY FAVORITE PLACE IN STARK COUNTY: The Saxton Gallery, of course!
WHEN I WAS A KID, I WANTED TO BE A: Marine biologist … still do!
FIVE YEARS FROM NOW, I EXPECT TO BE: In the Pacific Northwest, knee deep in a tidepool.
PET PEEVE: Text speak!
MY HOBBIES: Travel (in a big way), trekking, climbing, SCUBA diving, motorcycles, the symphony, gallery hopping, photography, cooking, and lazy Sundays.
IF I’D KNOWN THEN WHAT I KNOW NOW: I would have stayed awake in Spanish class!
OCCUPATION: SALES OPERATIONS & ANALYTICS MANAGER, SINGER, JOURNALIST
THE PERFECT DATE: One that leaves me in pain from deep, hearty laughter.
DATE DEAL-BREAKER: Superfluous and superficial sesquipedalianism (Editor’s note: It means the use of long words!)
I’M OBSESSED WITH: The game of “Scrabble.”
PEOPLE WOULD BE SURPRISED TO KNOW I: Have been known to break out in a gospel song during my live club performance. Sure this is seemingly a conflict of interest, but what is in my heart comes out and I make no apologies for being true to myself.
MY WORST HABIT: My proclivity to wonder and play out the “what ifs,” rather than simply accept “what it is.” It spawns procrastination.
MY BEST FEATURE: People tell me it’s my smile. I say it’s my smile’s reflection of my heart.
MY FAVORITE PLACE IN STARK COUNTY: Home. At home I can freely be an introspective introvert, and no one will suspect that something’s wrong.
SOMETHING I LEARNED IN COLLEGE NOT IN A BOOK: Friends are more valuable than my B.S. industrial engineering and M.B.A. degrees.
WHEN I WAS A KID, I WANTED TO BE A: Every occcupation imaginable. A teacher. A dancer. An actress. A business professional. Guess what? I am doing or have done all of those things! Cool, huh?
DESCRIBE A DATING DISASTER: Have you ever been out on a date with someone who just stares at you without blinking, and who utters less than 10 words during a one hour time span? You don’t want to, trust me!
FAVORITE CHICK FLICK: “Kill Bill” 1 & 2.
MY DREAM JOB: My dream job is to become a media personality. I would love to engage in stimulating, truthful conversations with ordinary people through which the most extraordinary experiences are revealed, and share these truths via a grand forum.
PET PEEVE: Liars. People lie because they are afraid that the truth won’t get them what they want. What a waste of energy.
SOMETHING I CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT: Music. I have a love affair with music; it touches and moves my soul.
MY HOBBIES: Performing. Singing. Graphic designing. Digital animating. Photography. Acting. I’m all about the arts!
IF I’D KNOWN THEN WHAT I KNOW NOW: I would have treated my hobbies as career goals. Throughout my early school years I was quite a nerd … groomed for a career in math and sciences. But being lettered has worked out nicely. My education actually funds my fun. And today I’m doing OK!
ACCOUNT MANAGER, SHANNON ENGLISH MARKETING GROUP
DATE DEAL-BREAKER: When the person you are with keeps checking their phone, or texting others.
I’M AFRAID OF: Someone actually hearing how bad I sound when I’m singing at the top of my lungs while in the car. I’ve lost my voice on longer car trips.
MY IDEAL TV OR CELEBRITY SPOUSE WOULD BE: Justin Walker from the TV show “Brothers and Sisters.” He (the character) has had enough life experiences to know his own values, and could definitely understand the relationships between my siblings.
BIGGEST TURN-OFF: Mean humor. When a joke relies on putting another person down, or making fun at the expense of another group, I find that very off-putting. Now laughing at yourself, on the other hand …
PEOPLE WOULD BE SURPRISED TO KNOW I: Have an amazing ability to get lost. I have gotten lost inside of buildings, while walking down a one-way street, during races, and in my own neighborhood.
MY WORST HABIT: Talking to myself. I narrate my life whether others want to hear it or not.
MY BEST FEATURE: I’ve been told it’s my energy level. 3 a.m. and 3 p.m. usually feel about the same to me.
MY FAVORITE PLACE IN STARK COUNTY: Milk and Honey. Is there any better place than a family-run, small business that smells like hot fudge and roasted pecans as soon as you walk in? I have many happy memories that were made involving Milk and Honey.
SOMETHING I LEARNED IN COLLEGE NOT IN A BOOK: It’s OK to smile at strangers now, you are old enough.
FIVE YEARS FROM NOW, I EXPECT TO BE: Still getting lost frequently.
DESCRIBE A DATING DISASTER: Our first real date was a wedding. I was his date and he was in the wedding party. I did not know this ahead of time. I spent more time dancing with the bride’s grandma than seeing him. The wedding photographer can prove it. That poor girl’s wedding album — no one knows who the random girl in the blue dress with Nana is.
FAVORITE CHICK FLICK: Not my genre. I don’t do sappy incredibly well.
PET PEEVE: Whistling. Saying this might make me a bad person.
IF I’D KNOWN THEN WHAT I KNOW NOW: Go for it — timing will never be perfect.
PERSONAL TRAINER AND FIREFIGHTER/EMT
THE PERFECT DATE: Having my date over so I can make her dinner and have a nice evening with just us two getting to know each other.
I’M OBSESSED WITH: Exercising the body and the mind so I’m ready for anything … and Dippin’ Dots ice cream.
I’M AFRAID OF: Leaving something I started unfinished and spiders. Creepy little guys they are.
BIGGEST TURN-ON: Legs and a fun, outgoing personality, not being afraid to say what is on your mind!
BIGGEST TURN-OFF: Lack of self esteem and prejudging people you just met because of your past experiences with other people.
MY CURRENT RINGTONE: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles theme song.
PEOPLE WOULD BE SURPRISED TO KNOW I: Really do have a mean side deep down, but it only comes out when I play video games.
MY WORST HABIT: Biting off more than I can handle … figuratively and literally.
MY BEST FEATURE: My smile and ability to always be positive, and not letting the stress ruin who I am the rest of the day.
WHEN I WAS A KID, I WANTED TO BE A: Professional wrestler that you see on TV.
DESCRIBE A DATING DISASTER: Knowing a girl for only two days, she invited me to her family Christmas party. So when I get there her NINE brothers are there talking with her ex-boyfriend. Instantly, I regretted ever saying yes to going to the party. Talk about an awkward night!
FAVORITE CHICK FLICK: “Serendipity”
MY DREAM JOB: Doing something I love that I don’t mind doing every day.
FAVORITE FOOD: Steak and hamburgers, for sure.
PET PEEVE: When people open something and don’t close it, making whatever was left open get stale or dry … IT’S NOT HARD TO PUT THE CAP BACK ON!!!
MY HOBBIES: Exercising, playing guitar, video games, theatre, I like to dabble in everything.
IF I’D KNOWN THEN WHAT I KNOW NOW: I never would have done the Triple Atomic Wing Challenge at Quaker Steak and Lube … that was a terrible experience all around just for a bumper sticker.
MORTGAGE LOAN OFFICER
THE PERFECT DATE: Hmm … I would say dinner at a great restaurant and a cultural event … maybe the Cleveland Orchestra.
DATE DEAL-BREAKER: If he’s a smoker.
I’M ARAID OF: Bugs! Oh … and my own clumsiness! Being accident-prone has me walking around in constant fear of falling, breaking things, etc.
MY IDEAL TV OR CELEBRITY SPOUSE WOULD BE: This is a tough one for me because I’m not a big “celebrity” person. I would be drawn to someone political first. I’ve always had a special place in my heart for George W. Bush. He’s strong, integrity filled, a man of faith and good looking!
MY CURRENT RINGTONE: The one that the phone was set up with. Technology is a necessary evil.
PEOPLE WOULD BE SURPRISED TO KNOW I: Have a strong “hermit” side to my personality! I think most people don’t even think that’s possible given I’m an extrovert. I recharge by spending time alone … not by being around people.
MY WORST HABIT: I am constantly analyzing people and situations. It seriously makes me nuts sometimes!
MY FAVORITE PLACE IN STARK COUNTY: My parents’ house (Got to get a plug in for the folks!). My second-favorite place in Stark County is Gervasi Winery.
SOMETHING I LEARNED IN COLLEGE NOT IN A BOOK: “Your lack of planning is not my emergency.” Yikes! This was a poster on the wall of a guidance counselor at Akron University and I found it relevant since I was sitting there due to my lack of planning.
WHEN I WAS A KID, I WANTED TO BE A: Senator or a stay-at-home mom. I know … I don’t really get it either, but it is the honest-to-goodness truth!
DESCRIBE A DATING DISASTER: My people-pleasing quality prohibits me from answering this question. I hate to hurt people’s feelings!
MY DREAM JOB: Here’s where I should say … being a mortgage loan officer! I would say my dream job would be not “working” and pouring myself into nonprofit work! How great would that be?
FAVORITE FOOD: Mexican and Italian. I feel it’s a tossup! I would also like to mention pizza specifically. I have not met a piece of pizza not worth eating. While I feel all pizza is good pizza, I stand firm on the fact that there is only one great pizza. Pizza Oven.
PET PEEVE: Poor communication.