Local artist Louis Mandryk explains his process for preserving some of Dephos’ most historic homes on canvas during the Delphos Canal Commission’s Boatman’s Breakaway dinner Sunday. Mandryk also received this year’s Delphos Heritage Award from the commission. (DHI Media/Nancy Spencer)
Local artist Louis Mandryk explains his process for preserving some of Dephos’ most historic homes on canvas during the Delphos Canal Commission’s Boatman’s Breakaway dinner Sunday. Mandryk also received this year’s Delphos Heritage Award from the commission. (DHI Media/Nancy Spencer)
DELPHOS — The Delphos Canal Commission celebrated spring and its many volunteers at Sunday’s annual Boatman’s Breakaway Dinner.

The dinner celebrates when the ice would melt enough on the canal it could be broken up and travel resumed on the waterway. This is also the commission 30th year of being chartered by the State of Ohio.

Commission President Steve Dorsten announced that more than $100,000 worth of volunteer hours were received at the museum over the last year and 2,550 visitors passed through the doors.

“We continue to see growth in volunteers and our visitors,” Dorsten said.

Sunday’s guest speaker was local artist Louis Mandryk, who has spent the past year drawing and painting Delphos’ historic homes on canvas.

“I just want everyone to realize what fantastic old homes you have here and if at all possible, to make sure they are preserved for generations to come,” Mandryk said.

Mandryk noted that most of the old homes were Italianate or Victorian and some had a mixture of both.

“People would have an architect draw up the plans and they would do it like they wanted it,” Mandryk explained. “If they wanted a turret over here, the architect drew one. If they wanted something else over here, he put it over there.”

“When the Arts and Craft and Art Deco periods came around, we found we could build homes cheaper and we did it,” Mandryk added.

Examples of Mandryk’s work can be seen in the dining room at the Topp Chalet.

Mandryk was this year’s recipient of the Delphos Heritage Award given by the commission and this year’s Canal Angels are Barb Miller, Bernie Fiedler and Lee Plescher. Angel awards are given to volunteers who help at the museum.

The next event at the musuem is the annual tea at 2 p.m. on March 24. Vicky Jacomet of Victorian Rose Boutique will provide a fashion show and open the boutique following the tea. Tickets are $10 each.