Tena’s five local picks

After four years away, Tena Wilson was ready to come back home. She has been back for 2 1/2 years since being named executive director of the Stark County District Library.

After four years away, Tena Wilson was ready to come back home. She has been back for 2 1/2 years since being named executive director of the Stark County District Library. Even when Wilson was here before leaving for a job near Chicago, she wasn’t embedded in the community like she is now. She used to commute to Cleveland for work, which left little time to explore Stark County’s treasures.

Wilson isn’t making that mistake again.

After returning as the top executive with the county’s library system, there are some things she missed, a few she has discovered since being back, and many more on the horizon.

No. 1: SARTA bus passes

One of her must-haves is bus passes from SARTA. The little things are what keep her family going, and any chance Wilson has to get her visually impaired daughters—Whitney, 27, and Karen, 24—a pass for SARTA’s Proline service, she does. “Proline is fantastic,” Wilson said. “Karen works five days a week and volunteers at Pegasus two days, and if not for SARTA, there’s no way I could get her everywhere she has to go. It allows them their independence.”

No. 2: Avocado Curry from Basil

When it comes to dinner, Wilson said put a bowl of Basil’s avocado curry in front her and get out of the way. “It’s so good, you could just jump in the bowl,” she said. The curry is a Thai dish that comes with green beans, red peppers, onions and fresh avocado sauteed in the curry blend at Basil. It doesn’t cost a fortune, either. It’s $8.50 for a half order, or splurge for $13 and get the full order. The better news for Wilson is Basil is just a few blocks from her office.

No. 3: Mid’s spaghetti sauce

Wilson loves fresh food for dinner, and the sauce from Mid’s is made right here in Navarre. “We love it, with some crusty fresh bread from Johnnie’s Bakery,” Wilson said. The story of Mid’s is interesting. The recipe dates more than 70 years and started in the hills of Sicily. One of the sons in the family, Mideo, left for the United States in 1938 and opened a restaurant in Navarre. He started selling his sauce in the 1950s, and now Mid’s ships to 32 states.

No. 4: A car from Waikem

No one ever really starts out wanting a minivan. Wilson was put into one as a loaner from Waikem. She fell in love with the Honda Odyssey. “Automatic doors were a must-have for us with two little boys,” Wilson said. “It is Waikem’s excellent personal service that keeps me going back as a loyal customer.”

No. 5: Artist Margene May

We at About are not the only ones enamored of the artist (see Page 44)—May tops Wilson’s list as well. She has begun her collection with one work, and has her eye on another!

Where to buy

The Repository
Select Rite Aid Stores
Spee-D Foods
Buehler's Fresh Foods
Fishers Foods, including 44th Street NW, Tuscarawas St. W, Fulton Drive, Lincoln Way E. and Cleveland Ave. NW locations
Aultman Hospital Gift Shop
Mercy Medical Center Gift Shop
Gervasi Vineyard Marketplace
Carpe Diem Coffee Shop, downtown Canton and Belden Village Mall locations
News Depot
Avenue Arts Marketplace
Yum Yum Tree Alliance
Grapes in a Glass