Afternoon catchup: 5 Butler County stories you need to know today

Middletown City Schools superintendent Marlon Styles, Jr. speaks before Ohio Governor Mike Dewine signs House Bill 2 for the Ohio Residential Broadband Expansion Grant Program during a press conference Monday, May 17, 2021 at Amanda Elementary School in Middletown. The program awards grants to providers to fund the construction of broadband projects in unserved and underserved areas in the state of Ohio. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF
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Middletown City Schools superintendent Marlon Styles, Jr. speaks before Ohio Governor Mike Dewine signs House Bill 2 for the Ohio Residential Broadband Expansion Grant Program during a press conference Monday, May 17, 2021 at Amanda Elementary School in Middletown. The program awards grants to providers to fund the construction of broadband projects in unserved and underserved areas in the state of Ohio. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Here’s a look at five big Butler County stories today to catch up on the news:


Middletown Schools preview: Many COVID precautions remain in place, but some optional

Middletown City Schools superintendent Marlon Styles, Jr. speaks before Ohio Governor Mike Dewine signs House Bill 2 for the Ohio Residential Broadband Expansion Grant Program during a press conference Monday, May 17, 2021 at Amanda Elementary School in Middletown. The program awards grants to providers to fund the construction of broadband projects in unserved and underserved areas in the state of Ohio. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF
Caption
Middletown City Schools superintendent Marlon Styles, Jr. speaks before Ohio Governor Mike Dewine signs House Bill 2 for the Ohio Residential Broadband Expansion Grant Program during a press conference Monday, May 17, 2021 at Amanda Elementary School in Middletown. The program awards grants to providers to fund the construction of broadband projects in unserved and underserved areas in the state of Ohio. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

When thousands of students return to the classroom in Middletown Schools next month they will see many of the same coronavirus precautions they experienced last school year.

But protective masks will be optional — per recent edicts from state health officials — for students, said Middletown Superintendent Marlon Styles Jr. during a Facebook Live presentation Tuesday previewing the coming school year.

“Our position for next school year is masks are optional. You can decide as a family, but it is your personal or family decision,” said Styles.

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DeWine appoints Liberty Twp. attorney as new judge in Butler County

Courtney Caparella-Kraemer
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Courtney Caparella-Kraemer

Credit: Contributed

Credit: Contributed

A Liberty Twp. attorney will sit on the bench in Butler County Area I Court in Oxford.

Gov. Mike DeWine appointed Courtney Caparella-Kraemer on Wednesday for the judgeship that takes effect Aug. 9.

Caparella-Kraemer will replace Judge Robert Lyons, who was appointed to a different seat on Butler County Area III Court in West Chester Twp.

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Middletown man sent to prison for botched robbery that killed brother

Andrew Roberts, left, Jonathan Oatneal Jr., right. Middletown Division of Police
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Andrew Roberts, left, Jonathan Oatneal Jr., right. Middletown Division of Police

A man has been sent to prison for an attempted burglary that turned deadly last summer in Middletown, claiming the life of his brother who was a co-conspirator.

Jonathan Oatneal Jr., 24, of Middletown, pleaded guilty in Butler County Common Pleas Court in April to involuntary manslaughter and aggravated burglary with gun specifications. A month before, co-defendant, Andrew Roberts, 23, entered the same plea.

Roberts and Oatneal were each indicted in September for murder, aggravated robbery and aggravated burglary. In exchange for the guilty pleas, remaining charges were dismissed.

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Butler County Fair: Importance of ‘fair families’ on display for support, connection

Fair competitors show goats at the Butler County Fair Wednesday, July 28, 2021 in Hamilton. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF
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Fair competitors show goats at the Butler County Fair Wednesday, July 28, 2021 in Hamilton. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

One piece of the Butler County Fair that exhibitors look forward to the most is reuniting with their “fair families” — a phrase commonly used among the 4-H community that joins together each summer for the festivities and competitions.

To have a “fair family” is to be part of a group who all share the common love and admiration for the fair and 4-H life and lifestyle. They view each other as a family with a bond just as strong as blood.

Erin-Simpson Salone, a 4-H program assistant, said being part of a “fair family” and the significance that it holds to the fair’s youngest competitors all the way to the 4-H alumni show the power of the program.

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Miami University’s signature coffee blend continues growing in more retail stores

Starting this evening(CQ) Miami University will conduct a series of graduations outdoor at Yager Stadium through Sunday evening. As a precaution against the spread of the coronavirus, the university will for the first hold nine separate graduation commencements with limited attendance by family members, social distancing and a mask requirement. (File Photo\Journal-News)
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Starting this evening(CQ) Miami University will conduct a series of graduations outdoor at Yager Stadium through Sunday evening. As a precaution against the spread of the coronavirus, the university will for the first hold nine separate graduation commencements with limited attendance by family members, social distancing and a mask requirement. (File Photo\Journal-News)

Miami Grind, a collaboration between Miami University Dining Services and Rooted Grounds Coffee, has gone from selling a unique blend of coffee grounds to the Miami student body and campus community to retail stores such as Kroger and Jungle Jim’s.

The Miami Grind brand was originally created by Miami University students, launching in 2017 in dining halls, concessions, catering areas and on-campus retail cafes.

The Miami alumni-run brand has sold more than 17,678 pounds of product since its release, or about 58,853 gallons of coffee.

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AND, for an extra sixth story of the day ...

PHOTOS: Views from the Butler County Fair on Wednesday

Charleigh Hudson, 13, walks around holding her black New Zealand rabbit, Hoppity, at the Butler County Fair Wednesday, July 28, 2021 in Hamilton. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF
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Charleigh Hudson, 13, walks around holding her black New Zealand rabbit, Hoppity, at the Butler County Fair Wednesday, July 28, 2021 in Hamilton. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Scenes from the Butler County Fair Wednesday, July 28, 2021 in Hamilton. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

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