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

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


Election results: 7 races and issues you need to know in Butler County

Voters cast their ballot on election day at Madison schools auxiliary gymnasium Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020 in Madison Township. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF
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Voters cast their ballot on election day at Madison schools auxiliary gymnasium Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020 in Madison Township. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

In unofficial results with mail-in ballots still to be counted, here’s a look at the biggest races and issues in Butler County in Tuesday’s election:

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Investigation continues into fire that destroyed Fairfield restaurant

Fairfield fire units remain on the scene at Mango's Tropical Oasis on Dixie Highway after an early morning fire. Fire officials say the building is a total loss. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF
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Fairfield fire units remain on the scene at Mango's Tropical Oasis on Dixie Highway after an early morning fire. Fire officials say the building is a total loss. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

A Fairfield restaurant is a total loss after an early Tuesday morning fire, according to the city’s fire chief.

Firefighters were dispatched to Mango’s Tropical Oasis, 7121 Dixie Highway, about 1:30 a.m. on a report of a fire alarm activation, according to Fairfield Fire Chief Don Bennett.

“When they got there, they gained entrance to the building. When they opened the door the fire conditions changed significantly and they backed out and went to a defensive mode,” Bennett said.

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Three-time Purple Heart recipient, Middletown Vietnam veteran dies at 72

LaFayette Bronston, who was awarded three Purple Hearts, a Silver Star and Bronze Star during the Vietnam War, died Friday. He was 72. SUBMITTED
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LaFayette Bronston, who was awarded three Purple Hearts, a Silver Star and Bronze Star during the Vietnam War, died Friday. He was 72. SUBMITTED

When LaFayette Antonio Bronston shared military stories with fellow veterans, they considered him “the boss,” his wife said.

“Sacrifice and toughness,” said his wife, Dora Bronston. “He’s my hero.”

Bronston, a highly decorated Vietnam veteran, died Friday at his Middletown home after a lengthy bout with dementia, his wife said. He was 72.

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2 area YMCAs to celebrate a half-century of community service: How to go

The Hamilton and Fairfield YMCAs are celebrating their 50th anniversaries this month. Pictured is the 1968 ground breaking of the Fitton Family YMCA, which opened in 1970. (Provided Photo\Journal-News)
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The Hamilton and Fairfield YMCAs are celebrating their 50th anniversaries this month. Pictured is the 1968 ground breaking of the Fitton Family YMCA, which opened in 1970. (Provided Photo\Journal-News)

In a half-century, two area YMCAs have served countless thousands in two Butler County communities, and such a record of community devotion is deserving of a celebration, say YMCA officials.

The Fitton Family YMCA in Hamilton and Fairfield Family YMCAs were launched in 1968 – after eight years of planning - and two years of construction and fundraising saw the facilities open in 1970.

Starting later this month, officials from the Great Miami Valley YMCA will celebrate the two community centerpieces with public events while mindful of social distancing and other precautions required during the coronavirus pandemic.

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Voters support 11 of 14 Hamilton city charter amendments in unofficial results

Naneeka Thomas casts her ballot on election day Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020 at Wilson Middle School in Hamilton. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF
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Naneeka Thomas casts her ballot on election day Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2020 at Wilson Middle School in Hamilton. NICK GRAHAM / STAFF

Hamilton residents voted in favor of 11 of 14 amendments to the city’s charter — essentially the constitution that dictates how the government should operate — in unofficial results.

These results are expected to change as more ballots are counted through Nov. 18. We will continue to update these results as more ballots are counted.

Here are the proposed amendments, which were put forward by the city’s Charter Review Commission, a panel that’s created every five years to see what changes should be made:

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

Casual Pint owner hopes outside tent increases business during winter months in Hamilton

The Casual Pint Hamilton, 130 Riverfront Plaza, has opened a tent to expand its capacity as a way to serve customers through the winter. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF
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The Casual Pint Hamilton, 130 Riverfront Plaza, has opened a tent to expand its capacity as a way to serve customers through the winter. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Restaurants around the region are coming up with creative ways to serve customers in the colder months, and that includes a new large tent in Hamilton.

Ann Marie Cilley, owner of the Casual Pint Hamilton, knew if it wanted to remain open, changes had to be made to the business model. So Cilley decided to rent a tent for the next five months and hopes the $30,000 investment pays dividends by expanding its capacity through the winter months.

She also has applied for grants to offset the $6,000-a-month tent rental what she called “an investment in customers and customers' experience.”

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