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Features

Saturday, January 12, 2013
AL ZAGOFSKY/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Janet Hermann, president of the Friends of the Dimmick Memorial Library (right) talks with Veronika Sostak, a visitor on a getaway from New York City. "I saw the sign 'Book Sale Today'. I love books so I came in. We go to different places to look for book sales. I'm looking to find things I can't find at home."

"I like to work the book sale. I like to be around books. I like to see that we are doing something to support the library."

"I would like to find a way to attract more local people. That's why I'm here on Thursdays," said Janet Hermann, president of the Friends of the Dimmick Memorial Library.

Every Saturday, and on Sundays on festival weekends, from noon to 4 p.m., the Friends Annex of the Dimmick Memorial Library, two doors over at 58 Broadway displays its "Book Sale Today" sign on the porch of its quaint Victorian homestead.

Friday, January 11, 2013
History enthusiast Dale Freudenberger, Tamaqua, sorts through his private collection of posters from Lakeside Park in preparation for a potential museum display in tribute to the legendary Barnesville site.

From ice-skating in the winter to picnicking in summer, Lakeside Park was a year-round get-away to forget your troubles.

It was the workingman's park, attracting coal miners and their families from places like Lansford, Tamaqua, Shenandoah, Coaldale and Mahanoy City.

And although it was later eclipsed by the larger, star-studded Lakewood Park a mile away, Lakeside never gave up its hold as an entertainment venue. But its complete history was never fully documented.

Saturday, January 5, 2013
AL ZAGOFSKY/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Grace Wilson (right) and Connie DiJohn kick their heels line dancing at the Jim Thorpe/Penn Kidder Senior Center where Wilson teaches line dancing on Mondays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., except for holidays and bad weather. Classes are free and the public is invited.

Grace Wilson of Albrightsville is not only looking to dance in all the right places, she's taken up the proverbial baton, or whatever is its equivalent in dancing, and teaches line dancing at the Jim Thorpe/Penn Kidder Senior Center.

Not bad for a 79-year-old who didn't know the first thing about line dancing when her friend introduced her to it in 1999. "A group used to meet at the Albrightsville firehouse," Wilson said. "My friend loved line dancing and talked me into trying it with her."

Friday, January 4, 2013
Linda Yulanavage of the Tamaqua Area Chamber of Commerce discusses the photography of Owl Creek's Joe Matukonis, whose creative work is part of a business incubator pilot program.

The Tamaqua Area Chamber of Commerce is embarking on a new journey to provide a boost for a segment of the economy often overlooked.

Using available space inside its 114 West Broad Street headquarters, the Chamber will launch in January, 2013, a business incubator opportunity. The incubator is touted as a place for budding entrepreneurs who dabble in original products and other goods on a small scale or perhaps some existing businesses with a desire to venture into new products or enterprises.

Friday, December 28, 2012
Paul Scepansky chops peppers for a delicious Ataulfo, Mango Salsa.

The Christmas feasting is now over. You ate the last cookie. Turkey sandwiches slathered in mayonnaise are gastric memories.

You're wearing baggy sweat pants because they're the most comfortable and roomy things you own.

You swear you're never going to eat again.

You make the New Year's resolution to eat only nutritious and healthy foods in 2013.

But how do you start?

What do you need to know?

Bill Scepansky of Smart Partner Solutions sums it up by telling us to "Eat the Rainbow."

Friday, December 21, 2012
PICTURE # 1 Luke 1:26-38 In the sixth month, God sent the angel Gabriel (George Moretz) to Nazareth, a town in Galilee. A virgin (Brooke Scheckler) pledged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of David. The virgin's name was Mary. The angel went to her and said, "Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you." Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, "Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God. You will be with child and give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever; his kingdom will never end." "How will this be," Mary asked the angel, "since I am a virgin?" The angel answered, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God. 36 Even Elizabeth your relative is going to have a child in her old age, and she who was said to be barren is in her sixth month. For nothing is impossible with God. " "I am the Lord's servant," Mary answered. "May it be to me as you have said." Then the angel left her.

A friend of Renee Keiper of Kunkletown told her about how their church presented the Christmas story.

She excitedly told members of the CIA (Christians In Action) group at St. Matthew's UCC in Kunkletown last year of what she envisioned. The creative juices began to flow and the seeds for a "Journey to Bethlehem" began to grow.

Renee's original vision was to get the community involved so it would be a Kunkletown community event, not just a St. Matthew's Church event.

Saturday, December 15, 2012
The original charter for Pennsylvania set its southern border at the 40th Parallel. This would have place Philadelphia in Maryland. Fighting, followed by negotiations led to creation of a new border, surveyed by Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon.

The Mason-Dixon Line-what is it? Do you recollect that it had something to do with the Civil War?

Well, on this 150th anniversary of the Civil War, when films like Steven Spielberg's Lincoln are attracting a lot of buzz, it is a perfect time to dust off a long forgotten tale about the Mason-Dixon Line-it was not created to separate slave and non-slave states, no, it predated the Civil War by many years - it was created to help preserve the fledgling Pennsylvania colony by settling a festering intercolonial conflict.

Friday, December 14, 2012
DONALD R. SERFASS/TIMES NEWS From left: Grant Betz, Tamaqua; Chris Bartush, Orwigsburg and Dave Carl, Jim Thorpe, check cables and straps as the 101-year-old First National Bank clock is prepared for hoisting.

Lois Breiner had a secret. Nobody else knew it.

But it was only a matter of time.

What Lois knew for 48 years was that a fancy stained glass clock that helped to define Tamaqua's downtown since 1911 was stashed away inside a Cherry Street garage at the rear of her parents' Hunter Street home.

"It was carefully chained there," she recalls.

Her father, Henry, had salvaged the timepiece in 1960 when a name change at the Tamaqua First National Bank made the old clock obsolete.

Saturday, December 8, 2012
AL ZAGOFSKY/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS At the age of 30, shortly after birthing her first child, Jaqi Medaris of Palmerton experienced something greater than postpartum depression-her hormones went ballistic leading to a set of behaviors that her doctor diagnosed as manic depressive. Her book, The Missing Link, tells her story.

At the age of 30, shortly after birthing her first child, Jaqi Medaris of Palmerton experienced something greater than postpartum depression - her hormones went ballistic leading to a set of behaviors that her doctor diagnosed as manic depressive.

"My doctor said, that I will be a manic depressive for the rest of my life," Medaris said. "He told me that I would be taking medication for the rest of my life. I kept saying 'No! No! No!'"

Friday, December 7, 2012
John Dallas, Tamaqua

He wasn't a politician, entertainer, or public figure. He wasn't a member of clubs or organizations.

Yet John Dallas was known by just about everybody in town.

The colorful Tamaqua man passed away earlier this year at age 100. He carried the torch of an earlier era and it was a role he relished.

Folks say he marched to the beat of a different drummer. With trimmed moustache and a gleam in his eye, there was something special about the theatrical Italian man born on Halloween a century ago.