Profession/Avocation: Currently a full-time retail manager at Summit Mall, part-time costumed interpreter, aspiring museum collections manager
Connection to the river: Siegfried lives in an apartment that overlooks a particularly rough section of the river that flows through Boston Mills, a crossroads village incorporated into Peninsula. Her place rests peacefully under Interstate 80's massive skyward strips of concrete that roar with unassuming traffic. Along the scenic towpath trail, she often walks her dog, a spunky ball of fur named Daisy who today sports a purple-spotted sweater. She wants to try canoeing and kayaking this summer. Her apartment building, she notes, would go back to the park if foreclosed.
Profile: Siegfried first heard about the river in her environmental studies textbook in Riverside, California.
"That was my initial learning of it, and since I lived in California at that time, and had no intentions of going to Kent, and no intentions of coming to Kent, no intentions of coming out here for a Master's degree, no intentions of even living in Ohio, it was kind of like, ugh, that's a really gross thing for a river. I mean, we never had anything that bad in California."
"Let's put it this way: It actually made it to my environmental studies textbook in high school in California about the great Cuyahoga catching on fire. So, that's how bad it was. If it made it all the way to California for the history books, then that says something. I know that it's a lot better than it used to be. Because my parents actually grew up around here, (the saying was): 'The Cuyahoga—it didn't flow; it oozed. It oozed.'"
Why I do what I do related to the river: Siegfried wouldn't mind ultimately working in the park system, whether it's handling museum artifacts or reproducing history. As a costumed interpreter, she says, she already has the experience to act out what life might have been like along the Cuyahoga. "I'm halfway there, I got my own clothes. I know about the lifestyle; just give me a book, I'll learn about the river if you want. I'll learn all the little details."
She also enjoys nature photography—more than the "running-around-chasing-hoodlums-at-a-riot" photography—so the Cuyahoga gives her great stuff. Her first fond memory of the river is photographing it.
Favorite feature/place/section thing about the river: The section just below the back window of her second-story apartment&mdashbuilt on the edge of a drop-off; it's a long way down—is particularly prone to flooding. A week and a half after she moved in, the remnants of Hurricane Sandy tore through Ohio.
"And I just remember looking out and going, 'Man, I'm waiting for it to come up under my window sill or something!' I mean, not the greatest memory, but I've never really lived along a river, so it's one of those things you never really think about until you actually do live by it."
Besides watching the river bring interesting objects rushing past her window, she enjoys a peaceful, quiet walk along the towpath.
"I'm perfectly content with going and just taking a walk," she says. "Because you never know what you're going to see down there."