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OSU graduate shares love of buckeyes with students

Norwalk Reflector Staff • Oct 28, 2015 at 3:46 PM

Some people turn to comfort food to soothe a broken heart after a big disappointment. But after the Ohio State Buckeyes' devastating 41-14 loss in the National Championship game, Mary Jo Weilnau couldn't eat anything, not even her specialty buckeyes, naturally.

Weilnau, a second-grade teacher who has been at Maplehurst Elementary since 1989, is as big a fan of the Buckeyes as she is of buckeyes. An OSU graduate, she was hooked long before she could call herself an alumna. Four of her five siblings are OSU grads as well, and one of her brothers got her tickets to see the 1960s Buckeye basketball team, featuring Jerry Lucas, John Havlicek and Bob Knight.

With friends and family, Weilnau traveled to Arizona to watch the Buckeyes take on the Florida Gators, her third trip to Arizona to see the football team.

"It was a good experience, except for the game, which was awful," Weilnau said.

Though, she admitted when Ted Ginn Jr. took the opening kickoff back for a touchdown: "That's the most excited I've ever been ... It was strictly downhill after that." She added the team was too cocky and overlooked the Gators.

The 61-year-old teacher took some of her famous buckeyes with her to Arizona. Using her mother's recipe, Weilnau said she's been making buckeyes with her students for about 20 years.

Between cooking with her students and family, Weilnau said she makes about 800 buckeyes per year. The secret to her success paraffin, an edible wax that not only gives the chocolate a more solid form, but also makes it shiny.

"I can pretty much make them with my eyes closed," she said. "It's great to do with families. It's a fun time to spend together with little ones."

She cooks with her students once a month, having a cupboard in her classroom filled with electric pots and pans.

"We bring the rest from home," she said.

Though schools are becoming more cognizant of food allergies, specifically peanut allergies, Weilnau said she has not come across a student with a peanut allergies in any of her classes meaning buckeyes are almost always on the menu. WORST DISH EVER MADE

"Meatloaf with liver liverloaf. The cats wouldn't even eat it. My husband liked liver and onions, but he hate that. They ate it in my sister-in-law's family they must have been really hungry."

Mary Jo Weilnau

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