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February 2010

Getting school ready

Friday, February 26, 2010
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

A worker shovels snow at the St. Jerome Elementary School in Tamaqua.

Rex birth

Friday, February 26, 2010
Karley Joy Rex
Karley Joy Rex

REX A daughter, Karley Joy Rex, was born at 10:02 a.m. on Jan. 4, 2010 at Schuylkill Medical Center in Pottsville, to David and Kristen (Matukonis) Rex of New Ringgold.

She weighed 7 pounds, 1 ounce and measured 20.5 inches long.

Maternal grandparents are Debbie and Gary Kunkel of Andreas, and Michael and Teri Matukonis of Las Vegas, Nev.

Paternal grandparents are Brenda and David Rex Sr. of Lehighton.

Making a spot for their cars

Friday, February 26, 2010
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

Pictured are Tamaqua residents Rob Hartranft, left, and D.J. Fredericks shoveling a spot for their car in Tamaqua.

Ida Totani celebrates 100th birthday

Friday, February 26, 2010
SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Ida Totani, seated center, celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by her family. With her here are some of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Front row, from left, Lauren Cavanagh, Ida, Sara DiGrazia and Luke Cavanagh. Second row, Alexandria DiGrazia, Elizabeth Clewell, Allison Cavanagh, Theresa Totani, Kristan Campanaro and Emily Cavanagh. Standing, Maria Cavanagh. In the background is part of a timeline the family created to document her life.
SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Ida Totani, seated center, celebrated her 100th birthday surrounded by her family. With her here are some of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Front row, from left, Lauren Cavanagh, Ida, Sara DiGrazia and Luke Cavanagh. Second row, Alexandria DiGrazia, Elizabeth Clewell, Allison Cavanagh, Theresa Totani, Kristan Campanaro and Emily Cavanagh. Standing, Maria Cavanagh. In the background is part of a timeline the family created to document her life.

Ida (Fortunato) Totani celebrated her 100th birthday last Saturday.

She was born Feb. 20, 1910 in Fontanelle, Italy, to Sofia and Nicola Fortunato.

At the age of 2, six months after the tragic sinking of the Titanic, Ida along with her parents and two sisters, ages 5 and 10 months, boarded an ocean liner bound for America.

They arrived at Penn's Landing, Philadelphia, in October of 1912, where a sponsor led her family via train and trolley, to the small anthracite mining towns of Jim Thorpe (Mauch Chunk) and Lansford in Carbon County.

Correction from Tuesday's Eldred Twp. supervisor meeting article

Friday, February 26, 2010

In the article "Eldred Township supervisors voice opposition of proposed closing of elementary school" by Linda Koehler that appeared in Tuesday, Feb. 23 issue, there is a correction of a statement made by Eldred Township Supervisor Sharon Solt. Instead of, "Supervisor Solt said that the district receives over $3 million of the township's taxes and should use that to keep the school open" as reported, Solt said, "We contribute $3 million to PV, and that should be a consideration."

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Winter beauty

Friday, February 26, 2010
STEVE SHINKO/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
STEVE SHINKO/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

In a more peaceful setting Thursday afternoon prior to the heavy, windswept blizzard like conditions that prevailed during the overnight hours into Friday morning, the Mahoning Creek winds it's way through the pastoral landscape near St. Peter's Road in West Penn Township.

Move those cars!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Lansford Borough will be plowing north and east sides of all streets (odd-numbered addresses) beginning 8 a.m. Saturday. Then, the south and west sides (even-numbered addresses) on Sunday.

If you fail to move your vehicle from those areas, you face a $25 ticket.

No two are alike

Friday, February 26, 2010
ROGER SMITH, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
ROGER SMITH, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

It's a fact. No two snowflakes are exactly alike when examined up close as shown in this photo taken on a Palmerton tree branch. But it's doubtful that many area residents are thinking about that aspect of snow as the region continues to shovel out from the latest winter storm that socked the area Thursday and continued into today. High winds contributed to the problems causing drifting as area schools were closed for the second straight day, along with many businesses.

A track and field of white

Friday, February 26, 2010
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

Tamaqua's beautiful blue track can't be seen with the layers of snow covering it. Tamaqua Area Schools were closed Thursday and today.

JT's Lienhard places in wrestling tourney

Friday, February 26, 2010

Gunnar Lienhard of Jim Thorpe captured a fourth place finish in the Valley Elementary Wrestling League Novice Tournament on Feb. 7 at Catasaqua High School. He wrestled in the 58-60 pound weight class.

Lienhard was the only Jim Thorpe wrestler to place in the 34-team tournament.

A 'stinky' situation

Friday, February 26, 2010

Carbon County declares disaster to fix raw sewage leak

Carbon County has a "stinky" problem.

That's why, on Thursday, during the county commissioners' meeting, the board took action to proclaim a disaster emergency for the courthouse basement, which has had a problem with raw sewage leaking into the lowest level of the century-old structure for quite some time.

Sorting out the next Olympic Dream Team

Friday, February 26, 2010

By SHAWN MCFARLAND

Earlier this month, the 2010-12 USA Men's Basketball National Team released its 27 candidates for the upcoming FIBA and Olympic games.

The list consists of nine members of the gold medalist 2008 U.S. Olympic Team and a total of 11 Olympians who have captured a combined 15 Olympic medals (nine golds and six bronzes).

Now I know picking 12 players from a group of 27 all of whom for the most part are pretty outstanding basketball players won't be easy for USA Basketball Chairman Jerry Colangelo.

Winter starkness

Friday, February 26, 2010
STEVE SHINKO/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
STEVE SHINKO/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

A solitary tree, on top of a windswept hill in West Penn Township, stands in defiance to the fury of the oncoming winter storm late Thursday afternoon.

Moyer named Lycoming football Offensive Lineman of the Year

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Cody Moyer, a freshman at Lycoming College, received the Offensive Lineman of the Year Award at the Warriors' team Banquet that was held on January 16.

The Lehighton native, who played in nine games for Lycoming College, shared the honor with teammate Andrew Wagner (of Lewisburg Area), who played eight games before suffering an injury late in the season.

The two freshmen played a key role on Lycoming College's offensive attack, in which the Warriors compiled a total of 2,675 yards in addition to 201 points on the year.

Rick Springfield will heat-up Penn's Peak, Fri.

Thursday, February 25, 2010
Special to the TIMES NEWS Singer and actor Rick Springfield will be performing Saturday night at Penn's Peak.
Special to the TIMES NEWS Singer and actor Rick Springfield will be performing Saturday night at Penn's Peak.

On Saturday, the music of Billy Joel is featured

When you read this, there probably will be blizzard-like conditions raging outdoors.

On Friday night, things are sure to heat up at Penn's Peak in Jim Thorpe.

Performing will be Rick Springfield, with showtime set for 8 p.m.

Tickets will be available at the door. Prices are $42 and $37.

It's one of two nights when rock 'n roll music pulsates through the spacious Carbon auditorium.

On Saturday night, the featured artist is Big Shot, which is billed as "the ultimate Billy Joel tribute band." Tickets for the Saturday performance are $22 at the door.

Lansford declares state of emergency

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Lansford Borough has declared a state of emergency as of 12 a.m. Thursday. the declaration means the following parking rules are in effect:

No parking the entire length of Water Street and Kline Avenue.

All vehicles are to be moved off the south side (even number addresses) of the entire length of Patterson Street (U.S. 209).

People throwing snow back into plowed lanes will be cited.

Borough officials ask that people stay off the roads unless absolutely necessary.

West End Rotary Club makes donation to Equi-librium

Thursday, February 25, 2010
LINDA KOEHLER/TIMES NEWS
LINDA KOEHLER/TIMES NEWS

Right, Theresa Yocum, president of the West End Rotary Club, hands a check to Patricia Sayler, president and CEO of Equi-librium, Inc, to purchase four new autistic helmets for their riders. Equi-librium is a non-profit organization that offers equine-assisted activities in Sciota for children and adults with a broad spectrum of special needs and helps them reach their highest potential through horse-related activities. "We're very grateful for your donation. These helmets need to be changed every five years.

Chamber adds Administrative Assistant

Thursday, February 25, 2010
JOE PLASKO/TIMES NEWS
JOE PLASKO/TIMES NEWS

Amanda Kalce (center), the new administrative assistant for the Tamaqua Area Chamber of Commerce, is welcomed by Assistant Director Eileen Barron (left) and Executive Director Linda Yulanavage (right) during the chamber's breakfast mixer on Wednesday, Feb. 24 at the Tamaqua Elks Lodge. The chamber hired Kalce as part of its new management agreement with the Tamaqua Area Community Partnership.

On this date

Thursday, February 25, 2010

February 25, 1985

Today's 50th anniversary of the Bowmanstown Fire Company is being celebrated with the arrival of a new truck - a tanker and pumper combination. An open house which included the serving of refreshments also marks the occasion. Lester Everett, assistant fire chief, said a parade and other festivities in conjunction with the anniverary will be held Aug. 3. In conjunction with the anniversary festivities, the fire company has available various souvenir items.

Jim Thorpe news

Thursday, February 25, 2010

LAOH

Members of the LAOH will meet on Sunday, Feb. 28, at 7 p.m. in McGinley Hall. Plans for the St. Patrick's parade will be finalized at the meeting.

Community supper

St. Mark's/St. John's Episcopal Church, Race St., will hold its free community supper on Sunday, Feb. 28, from 4 to 6 p.m. at the church. Being served this month will be spaghetti and meatballs.

Woman with two local homes allegedly embezzled $4.4 million

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Justice Department says she stole funds from National Penn Bank

A woman who owns two houses in the Jim Thorpe Area School District, as well as numerous other homes, is accused of misappropriating $4.4 million from National Penn Bank in Boyertown.

Roberta Stutzman, 62, faces a maximum sentence of 63 years in prison, five years of supervised release, a $2.1 million fine, a $300 special assessment, and restitution.

In addition, the U.S. Department of Justice is seeking the sale of her five homes, seven motor vehicles, and numerous other assets.

Stutzman had been employed at the bank when the alleged embezzlement occurred.

Schuylkill court news

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Bail hearings

A bench warrant issued for Raymoind G. Hower, 20, Mahanoy City, was vacated after he was brought to court for hearing. Judge D. Michael Stine also set aside forfeiture of the bail by reinstating it but issued special conditions. Hower had to abide to the following - reside at 435 Roosevelt Drive, Mahanoy City, and shall not relocate without prior court approval and shall not possess alcohol or controlled substance and must submit to random drug testing.

Barnesville man died of gunshot wound

Thursday, February 25, 2010

An autopsy revealed that a Barnesville man, whose body was found at the Mahanoy City Little League field on Tuesday afternoon, died of a single gunshot wound to the head.

The county coroner's office revealed the cause of death for Mark Ketusky, 52, whose body was found about 1:30 p.m. by Mahanoy City police.

His family reported him missing on Monday evening to Rush Township police.

Other details of the incident were also learned.

Ketusky's body was found inside a Jeep Cherokee parked at the field.

Wait, there will be more

Thursday, February 25, 2010
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

Today's snow closed all schools around our area. Pictured is an empty parking lot this morning at the St Jerome Elementary School in Tamaqua.

Activated for deployment

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Ryan M. DeWire has been mobilized and activated at Fort Dix, N.J., in preparation for deployment to serve in support of either Operations Iraqi Freedom or Enduring Freedom. The soldier is a member of the 528th Finance Detachment, based in Lebanon.

The soldiers are normally activated from Army Reserve or Army National Guard units from throughout the U.S. They go through a series of in-processing procedures and training classes that prepare them for skills and situations they may face in their deployed environment.

SNOW DAY!

Thursday, February 25, 2010
LIZ PINKEY/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Stephen and Will Behun and their 6-foot-tall snow buddy. The boys are taking a break and snacking on the rejected carrots that didn't make the cut for Frosty's nose.
LIZ PINKEY/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Stephen and Will Behun and their 6-foot-tall snow buddy. The boys are taking a break and snacking on the rejected carrots that didn't make the cut for Frosty's nose.

Snow days. You either love them or you hate them.

If you are a child and you get a day off from school, you love them.

As an adult who has to go to work, most people hate them. If you can take the day off, or it's a weekend, it's a day to be treasured a day to do whatever you want!

With a major storm bearing down on us, we asked several TIMES NEWS staffers, columnists and members of the community what they do when faced with a snow day.

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ON THIS DATE

Thursday, February 25, 2010

February 25, 1975 Kim Neff scores a game-high 24 points as the Slatington girls advance in the District 11 playoffs with a 64-31 victory over Nazareth. Neff tallies eight of her points in the opening quarter as the Bulldogs race to a 21-0 lead. The winners, coached by Mary Kemmerer, also receive a strong game from Deb Marlatt, who finishes with 17 points and 15 rebounds. Brenda Welsh contributes to the win with nine points.

Local scouts celebrating 100th anniversary

Thursday, February 25, 2010
VICTOR IZZO/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Assistant Scoutmaster H. F. Nick Hawkey with Troop 98 of Brodheadsville stands alongside of a 1950s Boy Scout uniform and a display case containing vintage Scout items set up in the main office of the Jim Thorpe National Bank (JTNB) on Broadway in Jim Thorpe to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA).
VICTOR IZZO/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Assistant Scoutmaster H. F. Nick Hawkey with Troop 98 of Brodheadsville stands alongside of a 1950s Boy Scout uniform and a display case containing vintage Scout items set up in the main office of the Jim Thorpe National Bank (JTNB) on Broadway in Jim Thorpe to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA).

Individuals entering the lobby of the main office of the Jim Thorpe National Bank (JTNB) on Broadway in Jim Thorpe will be greeted with a display of memorabilia celebrating the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA).

In addition to the display at the Jim Thorpe bank, there are similar displays at the Susquehanna Bank in Walnutport and the Palmerton National Bank in Gilbert.

The displays celebrating this landmark event are the handiwork of H. F. Nick Hawkey from Kunkletown, an assistant Scoutmaster with Troop 98 of Brodheadsville.

Tamaqua crash

Thursday, February 25, 2010

A 16-year-old Tamaqua male escaped injury when his car crashed along Valley Road in Walker Township, Schuylkill County, about 7:15 p.m. on Monday.

State police at Frackville said the teen was driving west when he failed to negotiate a right curve and went off the road. His 2000 Volkswagen Jetta traveled 105 feet before it struck and sheared a utility pole. It then traveled another 60 feet before hitting a fence in a yard at 1444 Valley Road, where it came to rest.

Troopers said the teen will be cited for driving on roadways laned for traffic.

It's pretty, but wait

Thursday, February 25, 2010
BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS An SUV crosses the Bridge Street bridge near Baer Memorial Park in Lehighton this morning.
BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS An SUV crosses the Bridge Street bridge near Baer Memorial Park in Lehighton this morning.

Area braces for the brunt of the storm

Don't panic, but according to the National Weather Service our area is the epicenter of a wind-driven snow storm that is expected to dump 14-16 inches of heavy, wet snow on an already winter-fatigued people.

Meteorologist Greg Heavener said the snow started early this morning and is expected to fall through Friday evening. Winds are expected to reach 25-30 mph this afternoon, with gusts up to about 40 mph, with 50 mph gusts in the higher elevations.

Roth IRA conversion advantages detailed for Tamaqua Chamber

Thursday, February 25, 2010
JOE PLASKO/TIMES NEWS Lee Zink, manager of Mauch Chunk Trust Company's wealth management division, details the advantages of conversion to Roth IRA accounts during a breakfast mixer held by the Tamaqua Area Chamber of Commerce.
JOE PLASKO/TIMES NEWS Lee Zink, manager of Mauch Chunk Trust Company's wealth management division, details the advantages of conversion to Roth IRA accounts during a breakfast mixer held by the Tamaqua Area Chamber of Commerce.

This is the year to convert retirement funds to a tax-free Roth IRA.

That was the advice of Lee Zink, manager of Mauch Chunk Trust Company's wealth management division, at a presentation during the breakfast mixer held Wednesday by the Tamaqua Area Chamber of Commerce.

The mixer, which was sponsored by Mauch Chunk Trust, was hosted by the Tamaqua Elks Lodge.

Mike Prock, manager of Mauch Chunk Trust's Hometown branch, introduced Zink, who detailed the differences between tax deferred and tax free retirement plans.