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May 2011

GAR Cemetery to hold annual tree dedication

Friday, May 27, 2011

Grand Army Cemetery Association will hold its annual tree dedication program led by Board Treasurer Dr. Louis Vermillion on Saturday, May 28, 2011 at 10 a.m. near the garage on the 500 block of East White Street at the upper gate of the cemetery. Following the short program, there will be a complementary walking tour of the grounds in which several veterans interred at the cemetery will be profiled by members of the board of directors.

Career Day at Tamaqua Area Middle School

Friday, May 27, 2011
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

More than 70 local professionals, ranging from a politician to a massage therapist, spent time talking to Tamaqua Area Middle School students during the school's annual Career Day.

Career Day is a day where professionals are invited to talk to students concerning the benefits and duties of their profession.

One of the speakers was Donald Serfass, who is the managing editor-features at the TIMES NEWS. He spoke about the field of journalism.

Safe, money stolen from Friends of Animals

Friday, May 27, 2011

Jim Thorpe police are investigating a burglary at the Carbon County Friends of Animals shelter.

According to the Jim Thorpe police report, the break-in occurred between 6:30 p.m., May 24, and 9 a.m., May 25. Taken from the shelter was a safe and a cash lock box.

Susan Yaich, a member of CCFOA, said the employees discovered the theft when they went to place money in it from an adoption. She noted that about three weeks worth of checks and cash totaling $1,500 from donations and adoptions were secured in the safe.

Panther Valley Library to initiate book club

Friday, May 27, 2011

A book club is starting for adults at the Panther Valley Public Library. The first meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 31. The group will discuss what kinds of books people want to read, and when and how often the club will meet.

Also, the library's summer hours start on June 6: Mondays: 10 a.m. .-1 p.m.; Tuesdays: 9 a.m. - noon, then from 4 p.m. -7 p.m.; Wednesdays: 10 a.m.. -1 p.m.; Thursdays: 10 a.m.. -1 p.m.; Fridays: 10 a.m.. -1 p.m.; Saturdays: 10 a.m.. -1 p.m.

Damages in the millions

Friday, May 27, 2011

Thursday night's record-size hail, which spread through multiple counties, is expected to result in millions of dollars in hail damage as tens of thousands of area drivers take their vehicles to local auto body and glass shops to repair dents and replace windows.

"Hail damage repairs easily range from around $300 to a couple thousand dollars," said Matt Hope, owner of Hope's Collision and Towing in Tamaqua.

Hope and many other auto body shops throughout our area are overwhelmed with phone calls as people push to get their vehicles repaired.

Penn Kidder PTA holds volunteer staff appreciation luncheon

Friday, May 27, 2011
VICTOR IZZO/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
VICTOR IZZO/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

Some of the present and past officers of the Penn Kidder PTA attending the Penn Kidder PTA Volunteer Staff Appreciation Luncheon in the school's gym were, left to right : Trish Kellar; Christine Baldwin, Treasurer; Marge Steen, President; Nadia Corino, Secretary; Cheryl O'Rourke; and Nesa Ciobanu, Vice President.

L.B. Morris kindergarteners honor veterans

Friday, May 27, 2011
Kindergarteners at L.B. Morris Elementary wave American Flags during their performance of "Yankee Doodle" at their Memorial Day program May 26.
Kindergarteners at L.B. Morris Elementary wave American Flags during their performance of "Yankee Doodle" at their Memorial Day program May 26.

A special Memorial Day service starring kindergarten students from L.B. Morris Elementary School, Jim Thorpe kicked off the Memorial Day weekend Thursday.

Each year the kindergarteners put together a Memorial Day program for veterans and their families.

"They've been doing it for longer than I can tell you," said kindergarten teacher Shawn Bierman, "But this is our third year doing this program."

Eldred Township news

Friday, May 27, 2011

Memorial Day

Observance

Everyone is invited to attend a Memorial Day Observance at Eldred Township's Veteran's Memorial on Monday, May 30 at 11 a.m.

St. Matthew's cemetery

The St. Matthew's UCC cemetery committee asks that during the summer months no one put any flower pots or baskets on a grave site. It makes it hard for the mowing crew to mow and keep the cemetery neat. Only items able to go on the tombstone are allowed.

St. Matt's youth group

Tamaqua youths witness funnel cloud

Friday, May 27, 2011
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

A number of witnesses in Tamaqua reported seeing a funnel cloud or similar-shaped cloud heading south behind the Tamaqua Senior High School. Pictured are Tamaqua youths that observed the funnel cloud appear for approximately two minutes behind the Tamaqua High School. They also stated that it was only in sight for less than five minutes prior to the start of the heavy winds, rain and sleet. The hail struck so fast, that they had to seek quick cover from the falling hail. They also pointed out that the hail stung when it impacted their skin.

Coaldale news

Friday, May 27, 2011

Coaldale

Veterans service

The annual Veterans Memorial Day Service will be held at 9 a.m. Sunday, May 29, at First Congregational Church, Coaldale. Participating will be the Panther Valley High School JROTC and the Community Choir.

Veterans from World War I to the present will be honored for their service.

The service is open to the public.

On Wednesday, June 1, the church ministry group will visit St. Luke's Miners Memorial Hospital and Maple Shade at 11 a.m. and 1:30 p.m., respectively.

LCCC lists summer hours

Friday, May 27, 2011

Lehigh Carbon Community College has announced its Summer hours for the northern tier campuses in Tamaqua and Nesquehoning. The Summer schedule will begin on May 31.

The LCCC Carbon Center in Nesquehoning will be open Tuesdays and Wednesdays, from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The LCCC Morgan Center in Tamaqua will be open Mondays and Tuesdays, 8 a.m. tp 2:30 p.m.; and Thursdays, from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Admissions and registratrations will be open at both sites. For more information, call 570-669-7010 (Carbon) or 570-668-6880 (Tamaqua).

Firefighter who admitted to arson fires gets long state prison term

Friday, May 27, 2011

The last of four volunteer firefighters who pleaded guilty to starting fires in vacant buildings and barns on farms in eastern part of the county was sentenced by President Judge Willliam E. Baldwin in the Schuylkill County Court.

Shawn Matthew Hoy, 22, Long Run Road, Pine Grove, pleaded guilty to 92 charges and received a sentence 13 to 26 years in a state correctional institution and ordered to make restitution to a number of victims which totaled $725,982.42. He was sentenced on 10 counts of arson.

The restitution he was ordered to pay were to victims as follows:

One hail of a storm

Friday, May 27, 2011
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS A trio of cars in the parking lot of St. Catherine Drexel Catholic Church, Lansford, have back windows missing as a result of the hail storm last evening. Hail the size of oranges smashed windows on about a dozen cars of people attending the graduation of preschoolers of Our Lady of the Angels Academy. Throughout the Panther Valley and Tamaqua area, literally hundreds of cars were damaged.
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS A trio of cars in the parking lot of St. Catherine Drexel Catholic Church, Lansford, have back windows missing as a result of the hail storm last evening. Hail the size of oranges smashed windows on about a dozen cars of people attending the graduation of preschoolers of Our Lady of the Angels Academy. Throughout the Panther Valley and Tamaqua area, literally hundreds of cars were damaged.

Area receives damaging ice, winds, rain, lightning, power outages

Balls of hail larger than anyone can remember ever falling on the region caused widespread damages last night, especially in the Tamaqua and Panther Valley areas where literally hundreds of cars were damaged. Many of those cars had windows knocked out.

The National Weather Service confirmed the hail that fell in Lansford and Summit Hill was three inches in diameter, about the size of an orange.

The hail was part of a series of storms which swept through the region, packing winds that felled power lines and trees. There were widespread power outages throughout the region.

Bears win on homer

Friday, May 27, 2011

Pleasant Valley's Dianne Klapatch was only trying to hit a fly ball to the outfield.

As it turns out, she got a little extra.

With teammate Kasey Meckes on third base with one out in the bottom of the seventh inning of a tie game, Klapatch knew a sacrifice fly would chase home the winning run in Thursday's District 11 Class AAAA quartefinal game against Emmaus.

The Bears' No. 3 hitter got her fly ball and then some. Klapatch's shot to left cleared the fence to give PV a 5-3 walkoff win and a berth in Tuesday's semifinals.

Weather impacts District 11 playoff games

Friday, May 27, 2011

Three District 11 playoff games involving TIMES NEWS area teams were impacted by Thursday night's powerful storms that swept through the area.

Marian-Tri-Valley

A severe thunderstorm and a tornado warning caused the suspension of the District 11 Class A baseball semifinal between Marian and Tri-Valley.

The Colts were leading 3-0 in the third inning. The game will be resumed at 5 p.m. today at Pine Grove.

No. Lehigh-Salisbury

Sizing up the hail

Friday, May 27, 2011
DONALD R. SERFASS/TIMES NEWS
DONALD R. SERFASS/TIMES NEWS

Andy Leibenguth, Tamaqua, uses a camera to document the size of hail that fell Thursday evening in Tamaqua, demonstrating that chunks of ice were about the size of a billiard ball, seen in the center of the ice chunks. Checking out the results is Courtney Postupack, 9, Tamaqua. The severe hail storm appeared to cause damage to virtually every automobile parked outdoors in the community. When the storm finally abated, vehicle owners were dismayed to find dents, like pock marks, on their vehicle roofs, hoods and trunks.

16th annual fishing derby held at Kellner's Dam

Friday, May 27, 2011
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Pictured from left are Kellner's Dam Association trustee Anthony McGeehan, secretary Amy Bieniek, president Pete Bieniek Jr., trophy winner Kailyn Ever, 9, who caught a 23.5 inch fish, Cody House, 15, who also caught a 23.5 inch fish, vice president Pete Bieniek III and trustee Marygrace House.
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Pictured from left are Kellner's Dam Association trustee Anthony McGeehan, secretary Amy Bieniek, president Pete Bieniek Jr., trophy winner Kailyn Ever, 9, who caught a 23.5 inch fish, Cody House, 15, who also caught a 23.5 inch fish, vice president Pete Bieniek III and trustee Marygrace House.

Members and volunteers of the Kellner's Dam Association held their 16th annual two-day Kellner's Dam Children's Fishing Derby for children ages 4 to 15 in Tamaqua.

Approximately 200 youngsters registered for the free fishing derby. More than 70 prizes were given out for catching tagged fish. Some of the prizes consisted of fishing poles, tackle boxes, bicycles, nets, and many other sport items.

Verta building to come down

Friday, May 27, 2011
TIMES NEWS file photo
TIMES NEWS file photo

A dilapidated former industrial building next to the Panther Valley stadium in Lansford will be torn down.

The Panther Valley School Board on Thursday agreed to seek bids for the job of demolishing the building, at 401 W. Bertsch St.

The school district in June 2010 bought the building for about $800 at a Carbon County tax sale. The building had been owned by Bennett Verta Jr., who had planned to operate an industrial soap factory, Everbrite Industries, there. But he eventually lost the building to back taxes.

Early runs help PA edge Tamaqua

Friday, May 27, 2011

If Pen Argyl's softball team received a scouting report about Tamaqua heading into their matchup against the seventh seeded Lady Raiders, it would have proven to be inconclusive.

With wins against quality programs, losses to sub-par squads, and an overall record of 9-11 heading into its District 11 Class AA quarterfinal matchup, Tamaqua was certainly a mystery.

Add into that mix, a heartbreaking loss by his own team in the Colonial League championship and Green Knight head coach Bill Schankel wasn't exactly sure what to expect.

Bulldogs ousted by North Schuylkill

Friday, May 27, 2011
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS Northern Lehigh catcher Erika Bowman hurls the ball to first after fielding a bunt. Behind her is teammate Kristi Seiler.
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS Northern Lehigh catcher Erika Bowman hurls the ball to first after fielding a bunt. Behind her is teammate Kristi Seiler.

There wasn't any power hitting by either Northern Lehigh or North Schuylkill in their first round, District 11 Class AA matchup Thursday. The only hits by both teams were singles.

The visiting Spartans won the game, 5-0, scoring early by capitalizing on errors and speed.

Also worth mentioning is a superb pitching performance by North Schuylkill's Cassie Lapotsky, who allowed only four N.L. hits, struck out 11 Lady Bulldogs, and walked just two.

Figures show borough is saving money hauling trash to Hegins

Friday, May 27, 2011

Several months ago Nesquehoning councilman Michael Sniscak asked council president Mark Stromelo for proof that he found it cheaper to haul garbage to Hegins to dump instead of the Tamaqua Transfer Station. Sniscak said he would have the Tamaqua Station send figures to council. As months went by, council woman Mary Fox said she pursued getting the figures and had them on Wednesday night at the council meeting.

Stromelo read a reply to Sniscak who did not attend the meeting. But councilman Richard Zabroski was there to defend Sniscak's accusations.

Weatherly couple wed 50 years

Friday, May 27, 2011
The Rev. and Mrs. Richard L. Hinkle
The Rev. and Mrs. Richard L. Hinkle

The Rev. and Mrs. Richard L. Hinkle, Weatherly, will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary on Sunday.

They were married on May 29, 1961, by the late Rev. Alfred G. Sandrock in Salem United Church of Christ, Weatherly.

Mrs. Hinkle is the former Gladys (DeFrain) Titus. Pastor Hinkle is an ordained Lutheran pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, having served parishes in the Northeastern Pennsylvania Synod. He also was a member of the staff of the former Lutheran Welfare Service, serving as the senior vice president of the agency until 1989.

Spilled stone closes SR-209 for hours

Friday, May 27, 2011
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Pictured clearing stone of the road are Tuscarora Fire Company firefighters, Hope's Towing employees, and Terry Koch, owner and operator of Terry Koch Excavating of Schuylkill Haven.
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Pictured clearing stone of the road are Tuscarora Fire Company firefighters, Hope's Towing employees, and Terry Koch, owner and operator of Terry Koch Excavating of Schuylkill Haven.

Results in generous donation to Kellner's Dam

SR-209 between Tamaqua and Tuscarora was closed Thursday morning while Tuscarora firefighters, Schuylkill Township Police and Hope's Towing spent hours removing a quarter-mile trail of quarry stone that had fallen out the back of a tri-axle truck after its rear hatch malfunctioned and opened.

Terry Koch, owner and operator of Terry Koch Excavating of Schuylkill Haven, stated his appreciation to all the firefighters, Schuylkill Township Police Chief Jesse Zimmerman and community members who helped clean the lengthy spill.

Help the animals, residents plead

Friday, May 27, 2011

Carbon County residents want something done to help the dogs and cats in the county.

During the county commissioners' meeting on Thursday, members of Carbon County Friends of Animals approached the board, asking them to do something to help the animals, such as creating an ordinance addressing issues of overpopulation; and abandoning animals. They also offered to help reduce the burden on the county K-9 shelter by offering volunteer services.

West End Car Show planned

Friday, May 27, 2011

The West End Car Show will be held from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, June 26, at the West End Fairgrounds, Route 209, Gilbert. Music will be provided at 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. by Chris Eckert. There will be peddle tractor pulls by the Pocono Old Tyme Farm Equipment Association and a display by the Pocono Mountain Garden Railway Society, plus other events. Refreshments will be available. Preregistration for car should call 610-681-4045 or 570-629-7363. The event benefits Western Pocono Jaycees. Admission is charged. Dash plaques will be given to the first 300 entries.

Fishing Derby trophy catch

Friday, May 27, 2011
Carol Zickler, special to the TIMES NEWS
Carol Zickler, special to the TIMES NEWS

Frank Bokan received the trophy for largest fish at the Third Annual Connell McCall Fishing Derby sponsored by the Nesquehoning Conservation Club. His fish measured 18 1/2 inches long. Behind Frank are family members of the late Connell McCall. They include, from left, Madison, Darby, Avery, Mary Ellen and Terry McCall and behind them are Emmett Jr., Michael, and Emmett Sr. McCall.

A knowledgeable trail

Friday, May 27, 2011
AMY MILLER/TIMES NEWS Derek Marouchoc of Boy Scout Troop 744 in Nesquehoning, kneels behind one of the signs he made along the nature trail at Air Products in Hometown. Marouchoc completed his Eagle Scout project by identifying trees and plants along the trail and building 38 identification posts, which now line the path.
AMY MILLER/TIMES NEWS Derek Marouchoc of Boy Scout Troop 744 in Nesquehoning, kneels behind one of the signs he made along the nature trail at Air Products in Hometown. Marouchoc completed his Eagle Scout project by identifying trees and plants along the trail and building 38 identification posts, which now line the path.

Eagle Scout project will help visitors identify nature

On the grounds of Air Products Plant in Hometown, a nature trail exists, lush with flora and fauna of the area.

But residents visiting the trail had no way of knowing what the names of the plants and trees that lined the winding path were as they walked.

That has all changed now, thanks to the efforts of Derek Marouchoc, a Panther Valley High School senior and member of Boy Scout Troop 744 in Nesquehoning, who is working toward becoming an Eagle Scout.

Tide eliminates Northwestern

Friday, May 27, 2011
Nancy Scholz/special to the times news Northwestern coach Len Smith (left) watches the action on the field and directs baserunner Tyrone Williams back to third base.
Nancy Scholz/special to the times news Northwestern coach Len Smith (left) watches the action on the field and directs baserunner Tyrone Williams back to third base.

OREFIELD – Something had to give when two of the hottest teams in the area met up in Thursday night's District 11 Class AAA baseball game at Parkland High School.

Northwestern came in on a seven-game winning streak. Pottsville had won 12 of its last 14 games. With its season on the line, the Crimson Tide ended Northwestern's streak with a 9-0 win to advance to next week's title game against Blue Mountain at Coca-Cola Park.

'Touch of Broadway' held at St Jerome School

Friday, May 27, 2011
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS All grades, kindergarten through eighth, performed in the first annual Spring Theatre Program called "Touch of Broadway."
ANDREW LEIBENGUTH/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS All grades, kindergarten through eighth, performed in the first annual Spring Theatre Program called "Touch of Broadway."

Hundreds of parents, teachers, and guests overflowed the gymnasium of the St. Jerome Regional School in Tamaqua Wednesday night to watch the school's first annual Spring Theatre Program called "Touch of Broadway."

All grades, K-8, participated in the program.

Graduation Ceremonies at Tamaqua library

Friday, May 27, 2011
LIZ PINKEY/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS
LIZ PINKEY/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS

Graduation ceremonies were held last week for children participating in the Tamaqua Public Library's Pre-School Reading Program. The program offers sessions twice a week. Monday participants, who will be moving on to kindergarten in the fall, include: Stephen Behun, Jathan Krall, Anthony Odorizzi and Tyler Black. Library aides who assisted with the program are Penny Gursky and Linda Smarr.

Atlas Portland Cement

Friday, May 27, 2011
An Atlas office has been recreated at the museum.
An Atlas office has been recreated at the museum.

Northampton museum memorializes legendary industry

When the Atlas Portland Cement Company closed in 1982 Ed Pany went to homes, churches and newspapers to get the names of 2,376 people who worked at the plant. It was to remember these people that he started the cement museum in the municipal building of Northampton Borough. The names were placed on stainless steel plaques in the lobby.

Five cement companies remain in the area but all are foreign-owned: Keystone, LaFarge, Heidelberg, Essoc and Hercules.