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Xenia Daily Gazette - Ice Cream and Politics

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Ice cream and politics

Annual gathering celebrates 30 years of fun, openness of DeWine family

Xenia Daily Gazette
Marianne Wellendorf

Senator Mike DeWine (R-OH) and his wife Fran are gearing up for their annual Old Fashioned Ice Cream Social, to be held that at their home in Cedarville this Sunday.

"This is a very special event, this will be our 30th anniversary of hosting the Ice Cream Social and we are excited," Fran DeWine said.

Mrs. DeWine has been busy in the kitchen, baking over 150 pies from scratch, to prepare for Sunday's festivities. The event begins at 1 p.m. and ends at 5 p.m.

"We picked 20 pounds of cherries yesterday! We will have all kinds of pie available -- apple, cherry, peach, strawberry rhubarb and black raspberry. My father grows apples in Yellow Springs and we do get a lot of help from family and friends to put this all together," Fran DeWine said.

The social also boasts Young's Ice Cream, cotton candy, popcorn, a magician, jugglers, face painters, a pie eating contest and lots of games.

"We have about 2,000 people come every year. Everyone in Ohio is invited and we have so much fun!" Fran DeWine said.

"Fran does all the work," laughed Senator DeWine as he talked politics and watched his wife roll out her famous pie crust.

"It's amazing to watch her bake a pie, she's so fast. When I try to help, I'm so slow compared to her," DeWine said.

While Fran's busy in the kitchen, Senator DeWine is busy in Washington, serving on the Senate Intelligence Committee, Judiciary Committee and Health Committee.

"The Senate is constantly busy and I'm always working on something. I do love to come back here on the weekends though, spend time with the family and attend church," he said.

DeWine said that his service on the Senate Intelligence Committee has shown him that our nation's intelligence is actually something to be proud of, a far cry from what's been shown on the news recently.

"There have been some problems but we have really built our intelligence back up since September 11. We are beginning to come back and have really good intelligence and this doesn't get a lot of publicity. We will turn the tide in regards to the War on Terror, this doesn't mean we will never be attacked again, we certainly can't build walls around all of our cities, but things are being improved," he said. "I'm convinced that what we are doing is right and that our people do a good job at protecting Americans' civil liberties."

DeWine said that while he knows both President Bush and Karl Rove personally, he never asked either of them who leaked the identity of undercover CIA officer Valerie Plame.

Another topic DeWine is passionate about is protecting America's borders from illegal aliens.

"This is a serious problem. We need to have a partial wall built at our border, but what we really need is a national database to keep track of these people and register illegal aliens. We are going to need to bring these people out of the shadows," DeWine said.

DeWine said he supports the Senate's Immigration Bill that calls for imposing a fine on illegal aliens, forcing them to speak English and having legal paperwork to hold a job in the United States.

"I don't consider this amnesty, but there does need to be an incentive for them to come forward. I think if they don't come forward they should have to go back to their home country," DeWine said.

DeWine, who is up for re-election this November, is hoping residents will feel free to stop by his home Sunday afternoon for some fun and some ice cream.

The DeWine home is located on Conley Road in Cedarville and the cost to attend the Ice Cream Social is $5 for adults, all children are free.

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