Tobias-Zimmer Barn dedication/ice cream social set


BEAVERCREEK — The Beavercreek Historical Society is hosting a celebration from 5-7 p.m. on Sunday, July 23 at Wartinger Historical Park on Kemp Road to rededicate the Tobias-Zimmer Barn to the Beavercreek community.

Festivities include free ice cream and historical cabin tours. The event will also kick off a fundraising campaign to raise money to add restrooms and a warming kitchen to the barn.

The treasured barn was destroyed in the 2019 tornadoes that did major damage to the surrounding community. City and community support enabled a historically accurate rebuild of the barn in 2022, which was funded by insurance proceeds.

Wartinger Park was named and dedicated as “John H. Wartinger Park” in 1975, honoring a local teacher and community servant. In the years following, it eventually became the home of four early Beavercreek family historic cabins representing first settlers in the area: Philip Harshman, Samuel Ankeney, John Nicodemus, and George Jarusiewic. The Tobias-Zimmer Barn was added in 1996 to complete the collection. All buildings will be open for visitors during the event.

The original barn was constructed in a one-story saltbox design with a mortised and pinned white oak frame, built by Peter Tobias from Pennsylvania, most likely with the assistance of many neighboring farmers. The barn was located within the area known as “The Big Woods,” which later became the property of Bob and Agnes Zimmer (now the Stone Falls neighborhood), who donated the structure in 1996.

Barns of this type were used for every aspect of daily pioneer life including housing animals and livestock, storing farm implements and equipment, threshing and storing grain, storing hay and straw, milking cows, etc. They also provided a space for social events such as weddings, dances, and community gatherings.

Today the Tobias-Zimmer Barn serves as a site for community and private gatherings, as well as an educational interpretive center for the society’s annual Living History Program, which fulfills a state curriculum requirement by teaching local third-graders about Ohio life in the early 1800s. Launched in 1993, the program has served more than 15,500 Beavercreek school children.

The July 23 re-dedication marks the next phase of the barn’s history. Beavercreek Historical Society President Mark Wiley will be announcing a fund drive to enhance the barn with restrooms and a warming kitchen to increase its usability and also make it a more attractive rental venue, with proceeds supporting the maintenance and operations of Wartinger Park.

The society has established the Tobias-Zimmer Barn Fund to accept donations. Contributions can be made by check to Beavercreek Historical Society, 1368 Research Park Drive, Beavercreek, Ohio 45432, or by donating online at Please specify “Beavercreek Historical Society Tobias-Zimmer Barn.”

Special needs parking is available adjacent to the barn. Public parking is available at the Beavercreek Board of Education, 3040 Kemp Road.

Visit to learn more about Wartinger Park structures. Visit for barn rental information.

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