Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Where We Live

Saturday, October 20, 2012



When politics get involved in an issue, the result can be like a car stuck on ice - the tires spin but there's no forward progress.

That's exactly what's happening at the Packerton Yards, a former railroad repair facility that straddles the Lehighton and Mahoning boundary along Route 209. Carbon County purchased the sprawling, flat tract of land and is hoping to eventually turn it into and industrial park - which if it comes to fruition would produce jobs and add to the local tax base.

Saturday, October 13, 2012
AL ZAGOFSKY/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Ava Bretzik, director and historian at the Asa Packer Mansion, and Ron Sheehan, executive director at the Asa Packer Mansion in the Sitting Room or Ladies' Parlor where ladies would do needlepoint and have tea parties. The Mansion will celebrate 100 years of public ownership on Nov. 3.

The Asa Packer Mansion will celebrate 100 years of public ownership with a public commemoration program. The one-hour program will take place on the porch of the Asa Packer Mansion on Nov. 3 at 10 a.m.

"This year, 2012, marks the 100th anniversary of the passing of Mary Packer Cummings, the last of the immediate children of Asa Packer," noted Ron Sheehan, executive director at the Asa Packer Mansion. "She willed the home to the people of Mauch Chunk as a memorial to her father."

Saturday, October 13, 2012

It's late in the afternoon of a very hectic day as I pull over to the curb on First Street in Lehighton to park my car. I just need to run in to First National Pharmacy to pick up a prescription, so I'll only be a minute.

Then I notice the time on the meter is expired. I reach for the York Mints tin in which I keep change. Taking it from its spot in the pocket of the driver's side door, I notice the tin is suspiciously light. And quiet.

No quarters. There are also no additional parking spaces with meters with time on them.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Last year, I let you in on a little secret about me.

I love poetry.

In high school, I couldn't stop writing it. The words seemed to flow from my pen every time I put the tip to paper. The world inspired me in ways I couldn't explain.

By the end of the day, my notebooks would be filled with scribbled down thoughts that eventually became a collection of poems.

Saturday, September 29, 2012



Each year my husband and I plan an evening out and go to an area casino.

Before we were married some 40 years ago, my husband enjoyed going to the racetrack and betting on horses. Being a single fella, living at home with a full time job, and gas prices being a mere 36 cents a gallon; he would drive to Pocono Downs and bet on the horses. Sometimes up to three times a week.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

As our communities get smaller, so does membership and attendance at local churches, clubs and other non-profit organizations.

There are many factors that affect membership and participation of any non-profit organization. Some being membership costs, work schedule, true interest, location, time required and work needed.

Most people are opting to stay home in front of the television or computer, rather than getting involved.

In my opinion, the best way to recruit new members is to simply get out there. Here are a few ideas I've learned that work:

Saturday, September 8, 2012

A friend of mine stopped me the other day to ask if I was still involved with the Summit Hill Council because he had a question. I told him I was not for the last several years, but I would be more than happy to help him if I could. He asked me what I knew about Summit Hill's landlord ordinance. Did they have one? And if so, what did it cover?

Saturday, September 1, 2012

I love the water. I love to look at it, hear it, touch it, and I really love to float on it.

Having a boat has long been a dream of mine. Unfortunately, I don't have the kind of money to buy the kind of boat I want.

Not easily dissuaded, last year I talked my husband into buying a boat.

OK. It's not really a "boat," but it looks like a boat on the box.

Yes, it came in a box. You have to blow it up when you plan to hit the high seas, or when cooler heads prevail, a tranquil pond.

Saturday, August 25, 2012



Over my 40-plus years of being a reporter, I've worked with some very good community leaders. Among them were Lehighton Borough Manager Mortimer Smedley and Lehighton Chief of Police Lionel Cote.

Both served the local community in the '80s.

Where are they now?

Both are living in sunny Florida.

Cote came here from Lewiston, Maine. One of his great stories was how he was a security officer for the championship boxing match between Cassius Clay and Sonny Liston

Saturday, August 18, 2012



It's a rainy afternoon, and we're watching old television episodes of Leave It To Beaver.

My, how things have changed 'twixt 1959 and now.

The episode we saw involved the series of events set in motion when Beaver and his best friend, Larry, stopped on their way to school to watch a construction project. Fascinated, they lose track of time, and are late for school. To make matters worse, their books and lunch boxes are run over by a bulldozer.