VCNB Tips and Tricks To Keep Your Vacation Running Smoothly

School is letting out across our region and summer vacations are underway. You’ve packed the sunscreen, boarded the dogs and loaded the car but you might not have considered things you should do for your vacation finances. Whether you’re flying to Florida or headed to the mountains, there are some basic things you can do to keep your finances running smoothly and to insure you aren’t stranded somewhere with no access to your money.

Here’s a checklist of some things you can do:

  • Update Your Phone Number With VCNB – In recent years we have seen a spike in fraudulent activity. That’s why we have a talented team to detect and prevent this kind of crime. If we notice activity that’s outside of your normal spending pattern, our fraud department may turn off your card and call you to verify the attempted purchases. If you’re at a gas pump far from home and the only number we have on file is your home number, you won’t understand why your card isn’t working and we will have no way to contact you. PLEASE, take a moment to contact your local branch or our Customer Service Department and give us your mobile phone number.
  • Give Us a Heads Up – If you know you’re traveling, let Customer Service know where you’re headed. It takes just a minute and we appreciate hearing from you.
  • Plan A Second Form Of Payment – Always carry a second form of payment. We actually advise this even when you’re just tooling around town close to home but it’s especially important when you’re far from home. If you plan to use your debit card for primary spending, take a credit card, some cash and/or a prepaid card. VCNB offers credit and debit cards as well as prepaid and gift cards that can be used anywhere Mastercard© is accepted.
  • Download CardValet® – Knowledge is power, especially where your money is concerned. If you haven’t tried it, Card Valet is a fantastic way to keep up with activity on your VCNB cards and even to control how, when and where your cards can be used. With the Card Valet app, you can turn your cards on when you need them and turn them off when you don’t. You can also receive alerts whenever your card is used and place limits so that it can only be used at merchants you choose. You can even place spending limits on your card. This is free and easy to use! Look for CardValet in the app store on your mobile device.
  • Use Account Alerts– Another way to keep up with your money is to sign in to your online banking account and register for account alerts. You can receive a text or email whenever there is activity on your account, when your balance dips below an amount you decide and for a host of other reasons. Knowing how much money is in your account will help keep your spending under control and seeing activity on your account will help you spot unauthorized purchases. This is a free perk of online banking with VCNB.
  • Don’t Forget To Pay Your Bills – Being away on vacation doesn’t give you respite from paying bills. If you have bills due while you’re away, use Online Bill Pay to schedule payments while you’re gone. This is a free service of VCNB online banking, as long as you use it at least one time each month.

Vacation is supposed to be fun! Don’t let money, bills or card problems ruin your relaxing time away. Remember, VCNB Mobile and our http://www.vcnbfamily.com/ are here whenever you need them! You can also call our Customer Service Department at 1.800.542.5004 during business hours.

A Presidential Portrait: Remembering Robert B. Will

In honor of our 150th anniversary in 2017 we are taking look back at bank history and the people who have helped to shape our bank into the successful, secure institution that it is today. Read on to learn about one of our former presidents!

Robert B. Will Sr.A lifelong McArthur resident, Robert Sr. was a prominent citizen of the community whose personal history was closely entwined with the bank’s history like many other members of the Will family both before and since.

He was born to Aaron Will Jr. and Blanche Buskirk Will on June 15, 1906. He married Helen Burson Will with whom he had two children, Robert B. Will Jr. and Sara Will Crow.

Robert Sr. graduated from McArthur High School and attended Ohio University. He was a member of Trinity Episcopal Church in McArthur, various sportsmens’ organization, the Ohio Bankers Association, the Square and Compass Club of Ohio University and was an Advanced Conservationist.

He also was prominent in Republican political circles in Vinton County and in the region, serving as Secretary of the Republican Executive Committee of Vinton County and serving as Vinton County Commissioner.

In addition, he was prominently identified with the Masonic bodies of two counties. He was a member of Delta Lodge No. 207, F. & A.M. of McArthur, McArthur Chapter, Royal Arch Masons of McArthur, Wellston Council No. 120, R. & S.M. of Wellston and Jackson Commandery 53, Knights Templar of Jackson and Scioto Consistory, Scottish Rite.

Robert Sr. served as bank President from 1951 until his death in November 1965. An avid sportsman, Robert Sr. suffered a fatal heart attack while hunting with close friend John Gill, owner of Gill’s Chevrolet in McArthur.

During his tenure, the bank building was remodeled and enlarged in 1952 and again in 1964. This second renovation brought about the back lobby known as a Quick-Service Lobby, a one-window drive-in and the present brick frontage. The drive-in window was cutting edge for its time and provided customers a convenient, fast way to conduct simple bank transactions without exiting the car.

He also acquired the former Gill’s Chevrolet lot which he turned into a customer parking lot, providing customers ample opportunity to park and bank in addition to the on-the-go service offered at the drive-in.

Another contribution that Robert Sr. made to the bank, which is still felt today, is the creation of the bank’s Management Trainee Program. A student at the Rutgers University Graduate School of Banking, Robert Sr. wrote his graduate paper on how to recruit talented college graduates at community banks. His idea was to recruit the best and brightest young people and to give them challenging work. This program has produced a number of the bank’s finest leaders over the decades and the program continues to leave its mark on the bank more than sixty years since its inception.

Learn more about our 150th year here and about Bank Presidents Daniel Will , Aaron Will and John L. Will.  Find details on our 150th Anniversary Bash in McArthur here.

Small Business Spotlight: Lilly’s Kitchen Table

Small businesses are important to communities and running a small business is tough work. That’s why we feature a small business in one of our communities every month!

Lilly’s Kitchen Table has been a staple of the Grove City Town Center district for years, and is now the reigning two-time Grove City Business of the Year as decided by popular vote and awarded by the Grove City Chamber of Commerce. The breakfast and lunch diner is beloved by the Grove City community and has quite a story to tell.

For the past seven years Lilly’s has been under the ownership and guidance of Tracey Cope, a one-time server for the diner who jumped at the opportunity to purchase the business when the opportunity arose. “So many people were so happy to see Tracey move up and rise to become owner” Manager Sarah Cope explained. “We have so many long-time customers. Some drifted away and have come back to be regulars since Tracey took ownership.”

And take ownership she did. Sarah tells a story of a one night “extreme makeover” seven years ago before the first day of business under Tracey’s leadership. “When it looked like (Tracey) was going to have the opportunity to buy the business, she had a vision for it and started collecting and purchasing items and décor for the restaurant” Sarah said.

“The basement of her home housed all of this stuff. All of it. And once she signed the papers, the night before the farmer’s market, which is our busiest time of year, she and Todd (husband) pulled it all out started bringing it over and they went to work!” In one night, Tracey and family cleaned, painted, and decorated the diner to match the home town diner look and feel of Tracey’s vision moving forward. By morning, they were ready to open the doors with a new look inside. People were amazed at what Tracey and her crew had pulled off and admired their drive and dedication. “She truly took ownership from day one and really hit the ground running” said Sarah.

The diner specializes in breakfast and lunch, soups, and daily specials. Breakfast standards fill the menu alongside specialties like Lilly’s Big Breakfast and the Broadway Buster while sandwiches, subs, wraps, salads, handmade specialty burgers and more round out the lunch menu.

Ask a regular what’s best on the menu and their answer usually is ‘everything!’ Special dishes change daily and Ohio-made products like J.C. Steel pickles and condiments are used in house and sold at the front counter. Tracey’s decorative dishes and displays line the interior, and the back wall features a detailed mural hand painted by local artist David Maple.

Grove City locals have proven to be big fans of Lilly’s, as evidenced by the dramatic growth of their business throughout the past seven years and the aforementioned vote of “Business of the Year” for the second time. Nothing says “community” better than friendly faces and simply being there for one another. And there is never a time to need community more than in the face of tragedy.

Unfortunately, tragedy found this beloved community business in February when Chef and Back of House Manager Chris Cope died in an accident on I-71. Chris was the backbone of the business, not just because of the job he did there, but because he was Tracey’s son and Sarah’s husband. Known for his homemade soups and creative take on old standards, Chris was loved by all who met him. He left behind six children, all of whom are regulars around the restaurant and are well known to customers. “This was his place. He loved it here. This was family, home,” Sarah said.

Tracey, Sarah, and crew have faced these unfortunate circumstances with admirable grace and have received tremendous support from the community. A memorial fund was established at our Franklin County Banking Center and the Grove City Chamber of Commerce’s “Business of the Year” award is being renamed in Chris’s honor. “We’re still figuring out how to do this. But this community is the best. How do we even say how much this has all meant to us?” Sarah recalled, graciously.

The Cope family is beyond thankful for the support the community has shown throughout this time of incomprehensible loss, and says they are still putting the pieces together on moving forward. Thanks to the outpouring of support, they also have an excellent staff they can rely upon to keep the business moving. “We have amazing servers and a great team!” Sarah said of the crew of fourteen. “This is our family business and Tracey considers this her legacy. My kids are already asking to help out and they love to come in here. Visitors know them and love to see them – two of them are actually in that painting on the wall. So maybe someday they’ll be here alongside us.”

It’s easy to see why you can expect Lilly’s to be a staple of the Grove City community for years to come.

“One time visitors turn into lifetime customers. It’s not just a place to eat when you come here. People know our names, and not because of our shirts (which include names). They know our stories and we know them. We know their families, their kids, their orders. These are our friends and family, not just customers.”

Lilly’s Kitchen Table, open daily at 7a.m.-2p.m., is located at 4008 Broadway, Grove City and can be found online or on Facebook. Contact them at (614) 801-0771 or stop by for a good meal and friendly conversation!

Those looking to donate to the Christopher Cope Memorial Fund can contact the Franklin County Banking Center via phone at 614.875.8700, in person at 2250 Stringtown Road, Grove City, and contributions are being accepted via mail at Franklin County Banking Center, P.O. Box 201, Grove City, Ohio 43123.

Teach Teens Money Skills With Student Checking

Every parent wants their child to succeed in life. One way to help them get off on the right foot is to give them a strong financial foundation on which to stand, build and grow. That does not necessarily mean giving them a lot of money but instead helping them understand how to use and manage the money they do have.

Whether they have just a small weekly allowance, pay from an after school job, or have a large savings, it is important for young people to spend their teen years learning how to pay for things and how to manage a checking or savings account.

One way to accomplish this is to help them open a Student Checking My Way account at VCNB. This account is designed especially for teens ages 14-17 and provides them with access to a traditional checking account with mobile and online banking, a debit card and account alerts.

Young customers will have access to a debit card and the spending abilities that come with it.

The account also comes with a host of ways to safely monitor activity and to manage the account electronically. Account alerts can be set to notify you or your teen of account activity. Sign up to receive a text or email for a variety of account activities including whenever the debit card is used or when the balance falls below an amount that you set.

Online banking and mobile banking make it easy to see where and when money is spent, to transfer funds between accounts and to view bank statements.

We encourage parents and teens to work together so that young people are experienced at handling their bank account and prepared to manage their funds by the time they graduate high school. This very basic step can make a tremendous difference when a young graduate is venturing out into the world.

Remember though, a parent or guardian must be made joint account owner. This account can be opened online or in any of our sixteen banking centers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

VCNB Announces Photo Contest

Vinton County National Bank is asking local history buffs to dig through their old photographs for their best images of Vinton County! A contest will be held to choose the best antique/vintage pictures and prizes will be awarded. This contest is being held in conjunction with the bank’s 150th anniversary celebration.

Pictures of local life from Vinton County’s past are welcomed including streetscapes, landscapes, architecture, people, industry, nature and all other aspects of local life during our bank’s history. Pictures should be at least 40 years old.

This competition is meant to give the owners of historic photos a way to bring their pictures out of the attic and into the public eye. All of the photos entered in the contest are subject to be included in a compilation presented on CD to local schools, historical society and the library for generations of future researchers to enjoy and learn from.

Pictures may be submitted digitally either on a disc or by emailing brandi.betts@vintoncountybank.com. Pictures submitted in person should not be matted or framed and can be submitted to Vinton County National Bank at 112 W. Main St., McArthur, OH 45651, ATTN: Brandi Betts. All submitted pictures will be carefully scanned and returned to the owners. Originals will not be kept. However, if the owner wishes to relinquish ownership we will help facilitate a donation to the historical society.

The very best pictures will be printed for use in a display in the bank’s McArthur office during our 150th celebration in July. Entries are due by June 2 and the contest winners will be announced during an Open House at the bank on July 1. There is no limit on the number pictures one person can submit however every picture must be accompanied by an entry form. Complete rules and entry forms can be picked up at the bank or found below. See below for complete rules, categories and prizes.

The bank is celebrating 150 years in business with events, specials and activities throughout 2017. The public is encouraged and invited to take part in the celebrations. For more information on the 150th, the bank’s history or the contest, visit http://www.vintoncountybank.com/150/.

 

Photo contest entry form and guidelines.jpg

Click to enlarge and print.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CBI Celebrates 150 Years of VCNB

Shareholders 2017 Group Shot (with Joe)

VCNB employees who have been with the company for 25 years or more were honored at the CBI annual Shareholders meeting Tuesday.  From left are Donna Kopis (31), Brenda Fee (36), Dan Donahue (29), Darlene Merkle (47), Cheryle Lange (30), Barb Clemons (28), Kim Ward (38), Sandy Bates (32), Joe Griffith (25), Julia Bolen (33), Mark Erslan (25), Cathy Rutter (26), Jane Nickels (37), Brenda Brooks (37), Chris Gill (25), and Tom Will (36). Not pictured are Ben Crow (32), Brenda Winegardner (31), Greg Westenhouser (30), Suellen Nice (29), Stacey Buckalew (27), Rita Teeters (32), Jaime Lines (29), Melanie Powell (31), Doris Courtright (33), Beth Patterson (27), and Bonnie Craiglow (27).

 

Lancaster, Ohio – Community Bancshares, Inc. (CBI) held its annual meeting Tuesday evening, celebrating 150 years of banking with nearly 200 guests in attendance. CBI is the holding company for Vinton County National Bank (VCNB), a community bank that opened in 1867.

Chairman Thomas D. Will, welcomed shareholders and their guests and reflected on the bank’s long, storied past as well as its promising future. He noted that VCNB is the seventh oldest bank chartered in Ohio and the 22nd largest bank in the state.

Will is a fifth generation banker whose ancestor Daniel Will founded the bank in McArthur, Ohio. He discussed some of the values and the people that have helped the bank evolve and grow over time to not only survive the decades but to thrive through the ages. “I sometimes wonder what Uncle Dan would have thought about the bank today but I hope he would be pleased that we have stayed strong and profitable,” Will said.

He then turned the gavel over to CBI Secretary/Treasurer Ben Crow who informed shareholders that total assets grew 1.7 percent in 2016 to $883.5 million. The book value of CBI stocks is $76.65 per share, an increase of 3.12 percent.

Vinton County National Bank President, Ronald Collins presented the state of the bank and introduced three major goals for the bank in 2017. Those goals are to embrace change, to take advantage of technology and to listen to the customer. “The bank of the future will not be decided in the board room, it will be decided by our customers,” Collins said.

Collins also recognized the bank’s second president, Aaron Will, for hiring the bank’s first female employee in 1925, years before most other banks were employing women. Belle Jenkins went on to become Vice President, to serve on the Board of Directors and to be employed by the bank for 55 years. He noted that Jenkins had paved the way for countless women at VCNB and said that among 221 employees at VCNB, 167 are women.

He noted that there were countless people over the decades who helped make the bank the strong institution that it is today and led a moment of silence for all those who came before and who could not attend that night.

He went on to debut a brief video about the bank’s history and to recognize employees who have 25 years or more of experience with the bank. Those employees are: Darlene Merckle, Kim Ward, Brenda Brooks, Brenda Barber Fee, Julia Bolen, Ben Crow, Sandy Bates, Brenda Winegardner, Cheryle Lange, Greg Westenhouser, Dan Donahue, Suellen Nice, Barb Clemons, Stacey Buckalew, Cathy Rutter, Joe Griffith, Chris Gill, Mark Erslan, Donna Kopis, Jane Nickels, Rita Teeters, Tom Will, Jaime Lines, Melanie Powell, Doris Courtright, Beth Ann Patterson and Bonnie Craiglow.

Vinton County National Bank is celebrating their 150 year anniversary throughout 2017 with special events, a new museum in their McArthur office and other activities. Learn more here or follow the bank on Facebook.

A Presidential Portrait: Remembering John L. Will

john l will.jpgIn honor of our 150th anniversary in 2017 we are taking look back at bank history and the people who have helped to shape our bank into the successful, secure institution that it is today. Read on to learn about one of our former presidents!

John Lawrence Will was just the third man to be named President of Vinton County National Bank and he took pride in continuing the bank’s progress as it was planned by his predecessors. It was during his thirteen years of leadership that the bank’s assets topped the record breaking three million dollar mark.

During his tenure as President of the bank, he was known to continue the policies designed by those who came before him, which had made the bank strong and poised for continuous growth. While his approach was considered conservative, the bank was known to provide outstanding service to the farmers, businesses and citizens of Vinton County. It was also under his leadership that the bank survived and even thrived through the end of the Great Depression, through World War II and through post war expansion.

John L. was born in McArthur on April 18, 1881 to Aaron Will, Sr. and Minnie Bothewell Will. He graduated from McArthur High School in 1898. He began working for the bank on March 21, 1900, starting out as a Bookkeeper. He was later named Cashier before becoming President upon the death of his cousin Aaron Will Jr. in 1938.

John L. was a member of the McArthur Masonic bodies, including Delta Lodge No. 207 F. & A.M. and McArthur Chapter, Royal Arch Masons. He was a member of Trinity Episcopal Church of McArthur and the Southeastern Ohio Bankers’ Association.

In addition to his banking employment, John L. operated a farm near Zaleski and was widely known to be both understanding and sympathetic to the problems of the farmer. He was an ardent hunter and fisherman, maintained a garden and grew flowers.

He was married to Alice Reid Will and the couple had sons Dr. David R. Will and John Gordon Will who would go on to be the bank’s fifth president.

John L. died on May 8, 1951 after suffering a massive heart attack. He was 70 years old. At the time of his death, local newspapers reported that he had been discussing with other directors his plans for enlarging and remodeling the bank building. His plans did come to fruition the following year when the building was expanded, the front entrance remodeled and the lobby renovated to create a new central foyer and business room to accommodate the needs of the customer.

Learn more about our 150th year here and about two other bank presidents here and here.

 

Small Business Spotlight: Sweet William Blossom Boutique

Small businesses are important to communities and running a small business is tough work. That’s why we feature a small business in one of our communities every month! 

Nestled in historic downtown Chillicothe, Ohio is a boutique shop unlike any other. While some may call it a flower shop, using only that title underestimates the range of specialty products they are known to carry.

Opened in August 2011 by co-owners Anni McDonald and her Aunt Lori Botchie, Sweet William Blossom Boutique is truly a family affair. Anni attended Ohio University in Athens and while there worked for a florist learning many of the techniques used in the shop today. After graduating with a degree in Communications and Marketing she held a couple of jobs while searching for her passion. Feeling unfulfilled from those jobs, she approached Lori with the idea to open a flower shop. Lori was inspired by the idea but visualized a store that sold more than just flowers. She proposed adding fruit arrangements and sweet confectioneries to the line of products. Lori’s degrees in Business Management and Communications, also from Ohio University, make them the perfect pair for this venture.

Sweet William Blossom Boutique offers fresh seasonal flower arrangements custom designed to suit their client’s needs. Focusing on the flowers and not fillers to create eye-catching collages, their works of art are identifiable as SWBB creations due to their distinctive design. They specialize in floral arrangements for weddings, sympathy, and proms/homecomings. Located inside the boutique is a self-serve floral area called the Blossom Bar. Accessible as a grab ‘n’ go option, the Blossom Bar offers a selection of different styles of flowers and vases in different price points so customers can design their own bouquets for less.

One aspect of the business that sets them apart from other flower shops is their fruit arrangements. Using apples, strawberries, pineapple, grapes, blueberries and other assorted fruits, they cut and shape the produce to create one-of-a kind edible art.

Another edible aspect to the business is their gourmet caramel apples and specialty strawberries. The apples come in nine signature flavors such as salty caramel, buckeye, and their best seller apple crisp. All apples are Granny Smith in variety and are the perfect size for sharing, although they are so delicious you many not want to. Strawberries come in three different forms: chocolate-covered, crème-filled, and chocolate cheesecake. Orders can be all of one type or any combination of the three. McDonald says that their strawberries were a top seller this past Valentine’s Day.

McDonald and Botchie are committed to providing local products whenever possible and even sell candles in store made by another local company. These candles, produced by Small Batch Candle Company, are showcased in repurposed glass bottles. Pair one of these candles with flowers or confections and you have the perfect gift for any occasion.

Sweet William Blossom Boutique is located in the heart of downtown Chillicothe at 90 West Second Street. Visit them from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. You can also call them at 740.779.9600. Follow them on Facebook or on Instagram.

 

How To Budget When You Have Seasonal Income

Rewarding careers don’t always come with a steady paycheck. For people who work in agriculture, construction, tax preparation, entertainment, landscaping or other types of freelance and seasonal businesses, income may vary wildly depending on the time of year. This uneven cash flow makes budgeting especially challenging, but it’s by no means impossible.

Here’s how to budget for long-term financial stability when your income changes with the seasons.

Determine your average monthly income
With most traditional budget plans, you start by determining your monthly income. But how can you complete this first step if your income keeps changing? The most effective strategy is to use your average monthly income. To calculate this, add up your post-tax income for the past three or more years and divide that sum by the total number of months. If economic conditions have — or are projected to — hit your industry or business hard, you may want to deduct 15% to 20% from this number to create a safety cushion.

Calculate your average monthly expenses
When work is seasonal, expenses often fluctuate, too. During busy times, you may have to spend more on gasoline, utilities, equipment maintenance and office supplies. If you spend more during your busy season, determine your average monthly costs by adding up your personal and work-related expenses for at least one year and dividing that figure by the total number of months.

Fine-tune your budget
Subtract your average monthly expenses from your average monthly income to get your baseline budget figure. If you find you’re cutting things close or dipping into the red, you’ll need to make some adjustments. Consider cutting unnecessary expenses or picking up extra income by expanding your existing business’s volume, taking temp work during slow times or offering complementary services that peak during your off-season.

Become a saver
Having a savings plan is an especially important safety net when income is irregular. When planning your budget, be sure to include a line for saving each month. It’s best if you can put away 10% or more of your income, but even small amounts deposited consistently add up significantly over time with compound interest. Aim to save at least three to six months’ worth of expenses to ensure you can live comfortably during lean times or emergencies.

Additional survival tips
To help even out cash flow and make the most of seasonal income:

  • Make it easier for customers to pay you quickly by improving your invoicing procedure, offering options such as PayPal or Square to accept credit card payments, or setting up direct deposits to your account with customers.
  • Negotiate with vendors and suppliers for discounts or extended payment terms.
  • Take advantage of financial and budgeting software such as QuickBooks.
  • Consider offering discounts and promotions during slow times to boost business.
  • Track your cash flow regularly and adjust your budget as necessary.
  • Even with your budget plan in place, keep spending to a minimum during slow seasons.
  • Stick to your budget during your busy season to avoid spending the cash you’ll need during the down times.

Seasonal income doesn’t have to mean financial feast or famine. With proper budgeting, you’ll be able to live well no matter what the season.

© Copyright 2016 NerdWallet, Inc. All Rights Reserved

What’s On Your Wish List?

2017 Construction & HELOC - VCNB (Rt. 93S & Rt. 50 Clear Channel Lamar)

What’s on your wish list? A big kitchen for family meals? Perhaps a new garage to protect your vehicle from the weather? How about a pool just in time for summer parties? With a Home Equity Loan at VCNB, you can make these dreams come true. Open a new Home Equity Line Credit before April 30 and receive an introductory Annual Percentage Rate (APR) of 2.99%.

A Home Equity Loan or HELOC is a revolving form of credit that uses your home as collateral. The amount of your credit line depends on how much equity you’ve built up in your home. Lots of homeowners enjoy using the equity they have achieved in their homes to make improvements that will increase their resale values or enhance their quality of life.

Click here to learn more about our current special.

Want to speak with a lender? Contact your local VCNB office or chat with a lender from our website!