Tax exemptions

The Schuylkill County and Tamaqua Borough Per Capita and Occupation Tax Exemption forms for the year 2010 are currently available for Borough of Tamaqua residents.

The exemption forms can be obtained at the Tamaqua Municipal Building, 320 E. Broad St., Monday through Friday, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Forms will also be available at tax collector Alan Keer's office, the Tamaqua Area School District Administration building, the Tamaqua ABC High Rise, Majestic House Apartment Complex, the Tamaqua Public Library and the Tamaqua Post Office.

Residents must complete the form each year to qualify for the tax exemption.

Exoneration forms must be submitted by Friday, Jan. 29, 2010.

Writing contest

The Black Diamond Writers Network is sponsoring a holiday writing contest that is open to the public. Entries may include holiday stories, anecdotes and/or poems and must be no more than 250 words.

Other guidelines include: one entry per person; must be holiday themed; have separate pages for author's name and contact information, as well as the entry itself; must be postmarked by Nov. 30.

Submissions are to be mailed to BDWN, 116 Second St., Coaldale, PA 18218.

Winners will be notified, by phone or email, after Dec. 19. Winning entries will be published in the January edition of Carbon Copy, the BDWN newsletter.

Book signing

Two writers with local ties will be signing copies of their respective works on Nov. 28, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m., at the Tamaqua Train Station.

Peg Grigalonis will sign copies of her book "Chronical Memory of Lakewood Park," while Kurt Swikl will sign copies of "Along the Schuylkill River."

The public is welcome to attend.

St. John UCC

The Rev. Kevin Duffy-Guy will officiate at the 9:30 a.m. service this Sunday in St. John United Church of Christ. Nursery care will be provided. The service will be followed by a time of fellowship. Sunday school classes for all ages will begin at 11 a.m. The weekly service will be broadcast on radio station WLSH, 1410 AM, at 11:30 a.m.

Activities for next week will include: Wednesday, choir rehearsal at 7:30 p.m.; Thursday, Finance Committee meeting at 7:30 p.m.

St. John's is sponsoring a Christmas Extravaganza on Nov. 28. The event will be held from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

For further information, or to register, e-mail linderc08@verizon.net.

Zion Lutheran

The Rev. Debra Ernst will officiate at the 8:15 a.m. and 10:45 a.m. services this First Sunday of Advent in Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church. The later service will include the Sacrament of Holy Communion. Sunday school classes will be held at 9:30 a.m.

Activities for next week will include: Tuesday, Property Committee meeting at 6:30 p.m., Finance Committee meeting at 7:30 p.m.; Wednesday, Executive Board meeting at 10 a.m.; Thursday, Senior Choir rehearsal at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, Christmas tree placement at 9 a.m. followed by a family decorating party.

Bethany EC

The Rev. Kevin Roberts will officiate at the 10:30 a.m. worship service this Sunday in Bethany Evangelical Congregational Church. Nursery care is available. Sunday school classes will meet at 9:30 a.m.

Also on Sunday, Commission meetings and youth instrumental music rehearsal will be held at 11:45 a.m.

Activities for next week include: Tuesday, Prayer Time at 8:30 a.m.; Wednesday, Tamaqua Youth Ministry at 6:30 p.m., prayer/Bible study at 6:30 p.m.; Thursday, GriefShare meets at 7 p.m.; Saturday, Praise practice will be held at 9 a.m., ladies' Christmas Eve rehearsal at 10 a.m., men's Christmas Eve rehearsal at 10:30 a.m., Christmas banquet and program at 6 p.m.

St. John Lutheran

The Rev. Phyllis Wolford will officiate at the 9:15 a.m. service this First Sunday of Advent in the Fellowship Hall of St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church. The service will include the dedication of worship items, installation of council members and the reception of new members.

Gaudenzia/Bridge House names will be distributed. The church will be decorated for the Christmas season following the worship service.

The deadline for ordering poinsettias for the Christmas Eve service, and endowment gifts, will be Nov. 29.