Co-op Spotlight: Holmes-Wayne Electric Cooperative

Holmes-Wayne Electric Cooperative’s service territory is a top tourist area in the Buckeye State.

Holmes-Wayne Electric Cooperative (HWEC) sits proudly among beautiful rolling hills and amid the largest Amish population in the United States. With a service area located halfway between Cleveland and Columbus, HWEC provides electricity to more than 13,900 consumer-members, mainly in Holmes and Wayne counties.

Although the cooperative is located in a rural setting, you don’t have to venture far to find a unique business atmosphere. Agriculture plays a key role, but manufacturing is also a fundamental driver to the local economy. Tucked on back roads are endless businesses in a variety of industries that have been established through a strong entrepreneurial spirit found in these counties.

Industries range from automotive supplies to high-quality hardwood furniture to national-award-winning Guggisberg Cheese and famous Troyer’s Trail Bologna, just to name a few. The cooperative serves approximately 55% residential members and 45% businesses, with over 17,400 meters, which creates diverse electric distribution needs.

Tourism plays a part in the area’s culture, as visitors from across the nation come to tour Amish Country. Holmes County is home to the Amish and Mennonite Heritage Center, and there’s almost no limit to the Amish-centered activities for tourists: touring the countryside, visiting an Amish home and farm, learning farming methods, shopping for Amish-made goods, and, of course, indulging in traditional Amish foods. The Amish people are known in particular for their hearty, home-cooked meals and for their desserts, especially pies and chocolates.

There’s more to the area than Amish Country, though. The nearby College of Wooster holds lectures, concerts, events, and exhibits in every discipline and has been home to the Ohio Light Opera for the past 40 years. The Mohican River runs through the co-op’s service territory and is one of the most popular places in the state for camping, canoeing, kayaking, and even ziplining.

In recent years, a number of wineries have blossomed in the countryside, offering visitors yet another way to enjoy the picturesque terrain. The towns of Wooster, Millersburg, and Loudonville have benefited from downtown revitalization and offer unique artistic shops, boutiques, and restaurants, as well as weekend special events like ice carving, antiques festivals, free movie nights on the courthouse lawn, car shows, and arts and crafts festivals.

Friendly and warm local residents in a diverse area offering a variety of leisure activities, businesses, and arts make this rural area a unique place to call home for a thriving and growing electric cooperative. HWEC staff are honored to serve the community and are committed to providing excellent service to all of their members.