The state of Ohio purchased the 124 acres of Lonz Winery in 2001 with intentions to develop the property and encourage tourism. In 2014, a pavilion was constructed and some refurbishment took place; however, major changes remain to be seen.
On 6 June 2014, James Zehringer, ODNR Director, posted this statement on the director’s blog: “To show our commitment to revitalizing the Lonz Winery property, we have completed environmental remediation and corrected structural deficiencies. We intend to host open houses for the public and potential investors, and I’m hopeful that people will offer great ideas for the future of the property. We’re open to hearing ideas, and I am looking forward to seeing this project come to fruition. Our work has only begun in revitalizing this rugged and weather-beaten structure, but the potential contained within this opportunity leaves me eager to see what we can create as we move forward, together.”
At a public meeting held on Middle Bass Island earlier this week, the Ohio Division of Natural Resources announced plans to level the old estate home. Public response on Facebook has been voluminous. In effort to preserve history, professional photographer Roman Sapecki reports a “request to fully document the existing structures has been formally submitted.”