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Features

Friday, July 6, 2012
Pack 007 of Weatherly awaits a turn on one of the inflatables at Jambo 2012.
Friday, June 29, 2012
DONALD R. SERFASS/TIMES NEWS Retired art teacher and football coach Joe Evanousky, Barnesville, has spent a lifetime illustrating the culture of the coal regions, a passion he shares with wife Rochelle, artist, educator and former swim coach.

Joe Evanousky is telling the rich story of anthracite coal and the people who mined it. But he's not using a single sentence.

Instead, the Barnesville man speaks through his hands, relaying every intricate detail through the eloquence of a charcoal pencil.

At age 58, it's a passion he's had all of his life, even though his earliest artwork focused on other subject matter.

Truth be told, the former football coach and art instructor at North Schuylkill School District began doodling as a child while spending time one-on-one with his father.

Saturday, June 23, 2012
PHOTOS BY BRANDON TAYLOR Built between 950 and 1050 A.D. by the Chandela, the ruling clan of much of the central jungles of India, the temples showcase some of the most intricate stone carvings and statues in the world.

(This is the sixth in a series of columns on Brandon Taylor's recent trip to India.)

Sex sells. It sells very well. For the relatively sleepy and secluded town of Khajuraho in central India, sex drives the tourist industry, just not in the same way that it lures many an individual to places like Las Vegas. In Khajuraho, it's the heavily advertised erotic statues and "sex temples" that draw in crowds. From across the globe, people come to ogle at, blush over and take photos of the busty carvings of bodacious, scantily clad sandstone babes and bros.

Friday, June 22, 2012
LINDA KOEHLER/TIMES NEWS Right, Karen Fusco, family advocate at the Head Start West End site, loves working with the rest of the staff and children. Staff members are, left to right, second row: Mary Jane DaSilva, lead teacher Rainbow Room; Francesca Musacchia, classroom assistant, Erika Vera, classroom assistant Rainbow Room; Joann Raio, lead teacher Shooting Stars. Left to right standing: Christi Schwartz, classroom assistant; Stephanie Kelly, cook/classroom helper; and Fusco.

Karen Fusco admits she likes to play. She can't wait to get to work where she is surrounded with 3, 4 and 5-year-olds who like to play with her.

As a Head Start Family Advocate, she believes every child should have an opportunity to learn but to also have fun.

She began working with Head Start in the West End 19 1/2 years ago for the federally funded Head Start program for 3, 4 and 5 -year-olds of low income families. The West End site is located at the Monroe Plaza along Rt. 209, Brodheadsville.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Pocono Services for Families and Children (PSFC) began 45 years ago from a six-week pilot program with 12 children on the campus of East Stroudsburg University to now serving over 200 children and their families. There are six classroom locations throughout Monroe County. It provides supportive services for young children and their families to promote success in school and life.

Friday, June 8, 2012
ANDY LEIBENGUTH/TIMES NEWS WITH FRAN STAHL/PILOT Land of the Tiger. An aerial view of Coaldale Borough with St. Luke's Hospital - Miners Campus in the foreground.

One clear day, pilot Fran Stahl, Tamaqua, took to the skies over the valley and invited TIMES NEWS writer/photographer Andy Leibenguth to go along. With camera in hand, Leibenguth captured these scenes of the valley. Maybe you'll see your house here, or at the very least, a neighborhood not far from you. Enjoy these views of our area from up high.

Friday, June 1, 2012
Lisa and Bryan Rex serve punch to Gladys Polgar and Ronnie Graver. Lisa recalled the day she wanted to see her brother after a sports event and dressed as a journalist to get into the boys locker room.

The National Junior Honor Society of Northern Lehigh Middle School held a senior prom for senior people. They baked 520 pumpkin rolls to raise $3,000 for the group service project. To be members of the Junior Honor Society students had to maintain a 90 percent average.

Since it is an Olympic year, that was the theme of the prom. The flame towered over the event that made memories for the students and adults.

The kids did everything: cooked dinner, made the decorations and arranged the entertainment, said Advisor Jason Graver.

Saturday, May 26, 2012
The bell-shaped curve implies that there is a large normal toward the middle and a lesser amount toward the outliers. But normal is abnormal, according to The Best and the Rest: Revisiting the Norm of Normality of Individual Performance, a paper published in Personnel Psychology by Ernest O'Boyle Jr. and Herman Aguinis.

Twenty-five years ago, when my wife was studying for her secondary education certificate at Kutztown University, she was required to take a class on how to grade students using the bell-shaped curve.

She asked the instructor, "Why do we have to curve our grades? If the grades were so poor, wouldn't that imply either the students were not learning, the students were not working hard, the test was not testing what it should, or the teacher is not doing a good job. I did not get a satisfactory answer."

Friday, May 18, 2012
These better-than-two-foot diameter logs await the saw.

As members of the Polk Township Historical Society gathered at the Burger Sawmill in Kresgeville, brothers Jeff and Clark Burger greeted them. Their father, Johnny Burger, at age 83, is still active in the business.

"He's still the main guy," is the way Jeff put it.

The yard is filled with stacks of different-sized logs, with the smallest logs to be turned into firewood. It used to be sold as pulp but there is no call for pulp anymore. There are a few with a diameter of over two feet. When a truckload of logs comes to the yard it is sorted as it is unloaded, said Clark.

Friday, May 4, 2012
Baby photo of two-year-old Jerome Coonon, whose fate is unknown.

Has the answer to Tamaqua's biggest mystery finally been uncovered?

Resident George Fredericks thinks so. The senior citizen believes in his heart he knows what happened to Jerome Coonon, the two-year-old boy who went missing from a backyard. Jerome was never seen again, a case that stumped police, search teams and even the FBI.

Approaching age 86 and in the twilight of his life, Fredericks, a U.S. Army veteran, wants the story to be known.

"The boy never left that backyard," says Fredericks. "And there was nobody else around."