Marietta Prepares for Kasich State of the State Address

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Ohio Governor John Kasich has accomplished a great deal during his six-year tenure, but there is one thing that he has never done as governor: visit Southeast Ohio.

Kasich is scheduled to deliver his annual State of the State address Wednesday evening in Marietta. The event is eagerly anticipated but also a chore for the police department – especially since the governor is also a candidate for president.

“I am very happy to see the governor come into this part of the state because it is not an area that he has frequented during his time in office,” Marietta Chief of Police Rodney Hupp said. “We are glad to have him here as a guest.”

Hupp admitted that the Marietta Police Department has been scrambling to ensure a safe visit for Kasich. The department has been working with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office to redirect traffic. Marietta’s largest commercial road, Putnam Street, will be closed to the public through the day. However, the primary responsibility of security for the governor will fall to the United States Secret Service and the Ohio State Highway Patrol.

“My hope is that this visit is uneventful for the governor and that it is well-attended,” Hupp said. “From a security standpoint, it needs to be disciplined and organized.”

In addition to security preparations, Marietta Mayor Joe Matthews and his office have been involved in coordinating the arrangements for the event. Mathews says he believes the State of the State address is even more important this year due to the media coverage surrounding Kasich’s role as a GOP presidential candidate.

“This has been an interesting presidential race to say the least,” Matthews said. “This is more than a visit from the governor.”Peoples Bank Theatre

Some Marietta residents are asking why Kasich chose to leave Columbus for the address. Matthews thinks it could be that Marietta was the first settlement in the Northwest Territory. The People’s Bank Theatre is no stranger to high-profile guests, as performers like Frank Sinatra and Judy Garland have taken the stage there. Although he is grateful, even Mathews does not fully understand the decision.

“No one has really ever said why they chose Marietta,” Matthews said. “I plan to meet meet with Governor Kasich and find out.”

Despite his busy schedule, Matthews raved about the excitement. With a laugh, he described that the buzz around town will not stop anytime soon, as Marietta celebrates its 228th birthday on Thursday.