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November 2009

Tamaqua news

Monday, November 30, 2009

Spirit of Christmas

Tamaqua's Annual Spirit of Christmas Festival will be held this weekend at a variety of venues in the downtown area.

Festivities will begin with a candlelit walking tour of the historic district. Participants will meet at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, at the Tamaqua Historical Society Museum, 116 W. Broad St.

Monroe driver facing DUI count

Monday, November 30, 2009

A Monroe County driver is facing a charge of driving under the influence (DUI) following an incident in Schuylkill County.

State police at Frackville said Mack Quiteh, 51, of Tobyhanna, appeared along SR924 at Eagle Rock Resort in East Union Township, about 6:45 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 29, in an intoxicated condition. He was detained by security until troopers arrived.

Quiteh was found to be under the influence and failed field sobriety tests. He will be charged with DUI, troopers added.

Completes basic combat training

Monday, November 30, 2009

Army Pvt. Joseph A. Zaprazny has graduated from Basic Combat Training at Fort Sill, Lawton, Okla.

During the nine weeks of training, the soldier studied the Army mission and received instruction and training exercises in drill and ceremonies, Army history, core values and traditions, military courtesy, military justice, physical fitness, first aid, rifle marksmanship, weapons use, map reading and land navigation, foot marches, armed and unarmed combat, and field maneuvers and tactics.

Chimney cleaning

Monday, November 30, 2009

Don't overlook this vital maintenance

December arrives tomorrow, a month synonymous with colder weather and the beginning of winter. It means furnaces will be working harder to keep your house warm.

Is your heater up to the task? Have you had your chimney cleaned within the past couple of years?

Chimneys and furnaces are a major cause of winter fires.

The U.S. Fire Administration says that in 2006, 11.4 percent of residential fires in the United States were caused by heating the home.

Slatington driver in Lehigh mishap

Monday, November 30, 2009

A Slatington driver was involved in a two vehicle crash about 5:47 p.m. on Nov. 25 along SR100 in Lowhill Township, Lehigh County.

State police at Fogelsville said Katherine A. Kercher, 20,. of Whitehall, was in the parking lot of the Clausville Business Center and attempting to pull onto 100 to go southbound when the front end of her 1995 Pontiac Sunfire was struck by a 2004 Saturn Ion driven by Kelly A. McAvoy, 21, of Slatington, who was northbound.

No one was injured in the accident. Troopers indicated that Kercher was cited but did not state for what violation.

Housing woes hit first-time buyers

Monday, November 30, 2009
STACEY SOLT/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Laura Kennedy stands outside of her parents' home in Summit Hill, where she has been living as she attempts to purchase her first home. Kennedy is trapped in housing limbo, unable to close on the home she wants but, unwilling to walk away and lose the money she's invested so far.
STACEY SOLT/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Laura Kennedy stands outside of her parents' home in Summit Hill, where she has been living as she attempts to purchase her first home. Kennedy is trapped in housing limbo, unable to close on the home she wants but, unwilling to walk away and lose the money she's invested so far.

When Laura Kennedy set out to buy her first home this year, she did everything right. Kennedy, 25, saved up a down payment, earned a solid credit score, and found a home that she could afford.

Now Kennedy is trapped in housing limbo, unable to close on the home she wants but unwilling to walk away and lose the money she's invested so far. The Tamaqua house she is attempting to buy is worth less than the seller's mortgage, which means that the seller's bank must accept a "short sale" or risk the house going into foreclosure.

ON THIS DATE

Monday, November 30, 2009

November 30, 2002 Danny Miller and Ray Lenhart both have big games to help Lehighton register a 73-70 victory over Bangor. Miller finishes with a game-high 30 points and also pulls down 15 rebounds, while Lenhart contributes 23 points and nine boards. The Indians, coached by Jason Weaver, also receive eight points from Jon Yenser.

Burkett-Barner

Monday, November 30, 2009
Terry A. Barner Jr. and Stephanie M. Burkett
Terry A. Barner Jr. and Stephanie M. Burkett

Mr. and Mrs. Todd Burkett of Lehighton announce the engagement of their daughter, Stephanie M. Burkett to Terry A. Barner Jr., son of Mr. and Mrs. Terry Barner of Mill Hall, Pa.

The bride to be is a 2004 graduate of Lehighton Area High School, and a 2008 graduate of Lock Haven University, where she earned a bachelor's degree in health and physical education.

She is currently employed at Wal-Mart.

The prospective bridegroom is a 2005 graduate of Central Mountain High School.

Schuylkill driver facing DUI count

Monday, November 30, 2009

A Schuylkill County driver is facing a charge of driving under the influence (DUI).

State police at Schuylkill Haven said Jeffrey Hossler, 41, of Pottsville, was driving at a high rate of speed along SR61 in the area of Aldi's in North Manheim Township, about 3:06 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 29. Troopers stopped Hossler and found he was under the influence. He failed field sobriety tests. He was then transported to the Schuylkill Medical Center South, Pottsville, where he submitted to a blood test. The DUI charge is pending the test results.

Returns home from deployment

Monday, November 30, 2009

Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Josh E. Fox has returned to the U.S. after being deployed overseas at a forward operating base in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Operation Iraqi Freedom is the official name given to military operations involving members of the U.S. armed forces and coalition forces participating in efforts to free and secure Iraq. Mission objectives focus on force protection, peacekeeping, stabilization, security and counter-insurgency operations as the Iraqi transitional governing bodies assume full sovereign powers to govern the peoples of Iraq.

Getting it right 'a big deal' at district CYO Spelling Bee

Monday, November 30, 2009
By TERRY AHNER/TIMES NEWS  St. John Neumann Regional School Palmerton campus students Elizabeth Kester (Grade 8) and Elijah Koma (Grade 6) placed third in their respective grade levels during the District 5 CYO Spelling Bee last week at the school.
By TERRY AHNER/TIMES NEWS St. John Neumann Regional School Palmerton campus students Elizabeth Kester (Grade 8) and Elijah Koma (Grade 6) placed third in their respective grade levels during the District 5 CYO Spelling Bee last week at the school.

St. John Neumann Regional School hosted the action

Words spelled correctly were sweet as honey, while misspellings assuredly stung like a bee.

Welcome to the pressure-cooker known as the District 5 CYO Spelling Bee, which was held last week at St. John Neumann Regional School's Palmerton campus.

Sixth, seventh and eighth graders from various schools took turns as they attempted to spell each word successfully in their quest for spelling supremacy.

The competition for each grade was held in multiple rooms for time purposes. Each group was given two warm-up rounds prior to the start of the contest.

Completes Navy basic training

Monday, November 30, 2009

Navy Seaman Recruit Michael J. Koch, son of Jeanne M. and David K. Koch of Tamaqua, recently completed U.S. Navy basic training at Recruit Training Command, Great Lakes, Ill.

During the eight-week program, Koch completed a variety of training which included classroom study and practical instruction on naval customs, first aid, firefighting, water safety and survival, and shipboard and aircraft safety. An emphasis was also placed on physical fitness.

Children's nature program scheduled

Monday, November 30, 2009

The monthly meeting of the Ranger Rick Club has been scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 5, from 10-11:30 a.m. at the Carbon County Environmental Education Center, Summit Hill. Meetings are open to children in grades K-6.

The club meets once a month throughout the school year, with each meeting focusing on some aspect of the natural world. The topic for December's meeting will be "Indoor Fun."

The program is free to CCEEC members. A $5 per child donation is requested of non-members.

The center is located at the west end of Mauch Chunk Lake Park, along the Lentz Trail highway.

Eldred column

Monday, November 30, 2009

PVEN wish list

Pleasant Valley Ecumenical Network is always in need of food. But currently, St. Matthew's UCC is holding a drive for new packaged underwear and socks for men, women and children. You can bring your donations to the church Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. and Sundays from 8-11:30 a.m. The deadline is Sunday, Dec. 13.

Birthday wishes

New Slatington borough manager hired

Monday, November 30, 2009

Slatington's search for a new borough manager has ceased.

Borough council at its Nov. 24 workshop session appointed Stephen Salvesen, of Hanover Township to the post at a salary of $60,000

Salvesen was chosen from a list of 22 candidates who applied for the position in July.

Contacted this morning – his first day on the job – Salvesen told the TIMES NEWS he looks forward to the challenge.

"I love it; I'm looking forward to getting involved," Salvesen said. "What I bring is experience; I've been a manager before both at the borough and township level."

A good breakfast before the hunt

Monday, November 30, 2009
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

Area hunters started the first day of deer season today by enjoying the Tamaqua Salvation Army's first annual all-you-can-eat breakfast starting Monday morning at 4 a.m. The breakfast was held at the Salvation Army headquarters on Broad Street.

Turkey dinner for families in need

Monday, November 30, 2009
MARY TOBIA/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
MARY TOBIA/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

The Ladies Auxiliary of the R.W. Fritzinger VJW Post 7215 of Slatington's 6th annual food drive was a success greatly in part to: left to right, Kathleen Grammes,Trustee; Crystal Kreidler, Auxiliary member; Pat Ohl, treasurer; Miriam Mack, senior vice president; Karen Bonsi, president and District 20 president; Sue Borits, auxiliary member; Carol Resh, Gold Star Mother and auxiliary member; Crystal Butz, chaplin. Eight deserving families in the Slatington Area were presented a turkey and all the trimming for their Thanksgiving meal compliments of the members of Ladies Auxiliary.

Hitting the heights

Monday, November 30, 2009
KEITH HUANG/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Writer, lyricist, composer and performer Greg Portz, a Tuscarora native, will launch a theatrical run off-Broadway starting in February.
KEITH HUANG/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Writer, lyricist, composer and performer Greg Portz, a Tuscarora native, will launch a theatrical run off-Broadway starting in February.

Tuscarora native gets big break off-Broadway

A man with local roots will get a big break in the Big Apple now that the renowned People's Improv Theatre has announced their plans to produce a show written and performed by a Tuscarora native.

Greg Portz, son of Greg J. and Deborah Portz, has learned that his work, "In Polynesian Mood," has been selected for production by the famous off-Broadway comedy venue. Portz teamed with Ashley Rebecca King to create the show, which is part concert, part monologue, and follows the pursuits of two cover band artists trying to make their way to a South Pacific resort without much success.

Hunter falls from tree, suffers serious injury

Monday, November 30, 2009
LARRY NEFF/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
LARRY NEFF/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

A Schuylkill County hunter was injured early today when he fell out of a tree stand during the first day of deer season. The incident occurred about a half-mile west of Lofty Road in Delano Township, at about 6:30 a.m. Reports from the scene indicate that James Shaup Jr., of Delano, had spotted a deer and was ready to shoot when he fell to the ground. He sustained a severe leg injury. It took rescue personnel about 45 minutes to get him out of the wooded area. He was flown by medevac helicopter to the Lehigh Valley Hospital, Salisbury Township.

Named Weatherly student of the month

Monday, November 30, 2009
Reigle
Reigle

Sally Reigle, daughter of Michael and Kim Reigle, Weatherly, has been named Senior of the Month for October at Weatherly Area High School.

Sally is the vice president of the Interact Club. She is a member of SPARC, the National Honor Society, and the Drama Club, and is listed with the National Honor Roll. Sally also attended the Second Mile Leadership Conference.

Twelve enter guilty pleas

Monday, November 30, 2009

Twelve people entered guilty pleas recently in the Schuylkill County court and were sentenced by Judge John E. Domalakes as follows:

Birth: Johnstone

Monday, November 30, 2009

A son, Zephaniah William Johnstone, was born at 1:02 p.m. on Nov. 11, 2009 at Pottsville Hospital to Jennifer Johnstone-Keich of Tamaqua.

He weighed 6 pounds, 11 1/2 ounces and measured 20 1/2 inches long.

Maternal grandparents are Williams Johnstone Sr., Girardville, and the late Mariane Johnstone. Maternal great-grandparents are Peter and Marion Teresavage, Jr., also of Girardville.

4 area residents among 12 entering guilty pleas

Monday, November 30, 2009

Four area residents were among 12 who entered guilty pleas last week in the Schuylkill County court and were sentenced by President Judge William E. Baldwin

They include:

Bruce Lee Smith, 24. of 332 Hazle St., Tamaqua, on a charge of theft from a motor vehicle was placed on strict probation for 23 months, pay $50 to Criminal Justice Enhancement Account (CJEA) fund and make restitution of $95 to the victim. Smith was cited by Patrolman Matthew Bynon, Tamaqua police.

An autumn farming ritual

Monday, November 30, 2009
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS

Eighty-five year old Ambrose Rex of Mahoning Township husks the corn on his nearly 300 acre farm. Despite his age, Rex works on all phases of farming. Husking occurs every fall after the cooler weather has ended the growing season. Rex said he has no intention of retiring.

St. Jerome students aid kids in different ways

Monday, November 30, 2009
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

Two students at the St Jerome Regional School in Tamaqua organized a local food drive in support of the Tamaqua Salvation Army Christmas food distribution. St Jerome Regional School student Mission Representatives Annette Ritzko and Olivia Agosti held their drive at their school this month as a community assistance project they are tasked to do each month via the Holy Childhood Association, a Catholic mission society for children in kindergarten through grade eight.

Rush Elementary releases honor roll

Monday, November 30, 2009

Steven Behr, Principal of the Tamaqua Area School District´s elementary schools, has released the names of students earning honor roll status for the first marking period of the 2009-2010 school year. To be eligible for High Honors, students must earn straight As. To earn honors, students in grades four through six must earn four As and two Bs, while third grade students must earn three As and one B.

Fifth grade Rush Elementary School students earning honor roll status include: HIGH HONORS - Cailyn Joseph and Mattew Smarr; HONORS - Amber Barron, Jade Pradel and Edward Titus.

Christmas Cantata

Monday, November 30, 2009

Faith Alive United Methodist Church

Faith Alive United Methodist Church invites the public to its Christmas Cantata, "There is peace in the world tonight," at 7 p.m. Saturday Dec. 12, or 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 13. Everyone is welcome to attend this free choral event.

Faith Alive United Methodist Church is located at 678 Pine St., Bowmanstown. For more information call (610) 852-2805.

Assists in party for children

Monday, November 30, 2009

Lycoming College student and Alpha Xi Delta sister, Kristina Maurer, assisted with the 5th Annual Monster Mash Baseball Bash, a Halloween party for children ages 13 and younger held at the Peter J. McGovern Little League Museum in South Williamsport.

Maurer, a sophomore biology and environmental science major, is a resident of Jim Thorpe and a graduate of Marian Catholic High School.

Air conditioning unit stolen in Monroe

Monday, November 30, 2009

An air conditioning unit was stolen from a construction site in Monroe County.

State police at Fern Ridge said the Goodman GSH1060 unit was taken from 4 Country Meadow Lane, in Chesnuthill Township, where a new home is being built. The unit was outside the residence and is valued at $3,200. Target Homes is the listed victim. The theft occurred sometime between Nov. 20-24.

Troopers also reported on two criminal mischieft incidents.

Two New York residents cited

Monday, November 30, 2009

Two New York state residents were cited for an incident in Carbon County.

State police at Fern Ridge said Salvatore Guiseppe Locascio, 18, and Ciro Charlie Locascio, 21, both of Glendale, were charged with harassment and disorderly conduct for an incident on the road in front of 72 Pope Lane, Penn Forest Township. The incident occurred about 5:32 p.m. on Saturday, Nov.28.

Returns home from Afghanistan

Monday, November 30, 2009

Air Force Capt. Amy T. Stahler has returned to the U.S. after a deployment to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

Operation Enduring Freedom is the official name given to anti-terrorism military operations involving U.S. troops and allied coalition partners. Active duty and reserve component members from all branches of the U.S. armed forces have been deployed to support the war against global terrorism outside the borders of the United States. U.S. troops serve in South and Southwest Asia, Central Asia, the Arabian peninsula, islands in the Pacific, and Europe.