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Features

Saturday, October 18, 2014
Special to the Times News and file photos THE FIRST TWO PICTURES SHOULD GO TOGETHER BECAUSE THEY COMPARE THE OLD AND NEW This 1910 postcard is of a gristmill in Wickford, Rhode Island. The history of the mill is not known in the records of The Society for the Preservation Of Old Mills. European settlers arrived in Wickford as early as 1637. The mill has the appearance of early Greek and Roman mills 2,000 years ago.

Not all old mills are old, according to Jeff Donat, member of the Society for the Preservation of Old Mills, as he recently shared his interest in grist mills with the Palmerton Area Historical Society.

Donat went to see an old mill in Sudbury, Massachusetts, only to find it was built to look old in 1929 by Henry Ford as his method of preserving Americana.

Pepperidge Farms used the mill to grind its flour until it outgrew the building. Oldsmobile used it as a background for an advertising picture, unaware that Ford had built it.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Neil Ahner's life changed forever when he received the gift of a donor heart 22 years ago.

There are 123,276people who are waiting for an organ.

Eight people die each day waiting for an organ.

Just one organ donor can save up to eight lives.

In 2013, 28,953people received organ transplants.

In 2010, (the most recent data) there were almost 2.5 million deaths in the U.S. Imagine if every one of those people had donated.

Saturday, October 11, 2014
SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS Neil Ahner II graduates from Pleasant Valley High School in 1995 after receiving a new heart. His mother and father, Sandie and Neil Ahner, are proud.

(Editor's note: This is the second part in the story of Neil Ahner II's journey of the heart. Having received a heart transplant 22 years ago, Neil celebrated by throwing a huge party.)

Neil Ahner II, now of Jonas, celebrated his 39th birthday on July 18. But 22 years ago, he was given another chance at life, sort of a rebirth. It was the day of his heart transplant.

Neil wanted to share this anniversary with all his family, friends and supporters as his gift to all of them.

Saturday, September 6, 2014
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS Lisa Hiles, recording secretary of the Russian Citizens Club of Coaldale, looks at plaques on the wall of the club. The club is planning a centennial celebration during which all the plaques and trophies in the club will be given to participants on the respective teams that earned them.

The Russian Citizens Club in Coaldale is 101 years old this year. It was once a major social venue in town, attracting hundreds of people for Saturday night dances and other special events.

Today, not many people patronize the club, located at 169 First St. in Coaldale. The busiest nights are those when dart tournaments or shuffleboard games are held.

The club is planning a big event later this year that likely will have high attendance.

Friday, September 5, 2014
DONALD R. SERFASS/TIMES NEWS "Sniper" Zach Langley, Fleetwood, waits for shuttle cars filled with passengers to emerge from the No. 9 Mine on Sunday as part of a mock train heist that afforded guests plenty of photo opportunities.

Hidden by tall evergreens next to the old wash shanty, sniper Zach Langley crouched on the ground and aimed the barrel of his cold, steel rifle with the accuracy of a laser beam.

His innocent prey didn't have clue.

It was a chilling sight on a warm, muggy Sunday. But it was all in fun.

Langley, of Fleetwood, was part of a re-enactment in which everybody had a chance to take part. It was like reality TV. But much more realistic.

Saturday, August 30, 2014
PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS Visitors to Jim Thorpe can learn about the history and architecture of some of the oldest buildings in the borough through the Mauch Chunk Historical Society's new app "Tour Jim Thorpe."

Want to know a brief history of the Harry Packer Mansion?

Love the architecture of many of the buildings in Jim Thorpe and want to know more about them?

There's an app that can help.

The Mauch Chunk Historical Society recently created the "Tour Jim Thorpe" app for iPhones and Androids.

The app helps visitors learn about the history of some of the most historic places in Jim Thorpe using their smartphones. It costs $0.99.

Friday, August 29, 2014
DONALD R. SERFASS/TIMES NEWS Members of American Hose Company #1, Tamaqua, march down Center Street in Pottsville Saturday on their way to first place as best appearing fire company marching unit with music.

They're the unsung heroes of our communities.

The volunteer firefighter, the man or woman who puts a life on the line in service to others, is a special breed.

Each is an individual story of courage and sacrifice.

Each day he or she accepts responsibility for the noble cause of protecting life and property no matter the risk.

It takes a spirit above the norm and unending devotion to always be at the ready, to live a life devoted to the call of duty.

Saturday, August 23, 2014
TERRY AHNER/TIMES NEWS  Elissa M. Garofalo, president and executive director of the D&L National Heritage Corridor, addresses members of the Palmerton Area Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday.

It spans 165 miles from the mountains of northeast Pennsylvania, along rivers, through the Lehigh Valley and Bucks County.

Even closer to home, the Delaware & Lehigh National Heritage Corridor is in our backyard and winds through our towns, main streets and parks.

Exactly how the corridor benefits local communities was the topic of discussion at a recent Palmerton Area Chamber of Commerce luncheon.

Elissa M. Garofalo, president and executive director of the D&L National Heritage Corridor, opened things up with a brief promotional video.

Friday, August 22, 2014
Jeremy Wo, vice president of the Shawee Preservation Society, said it monitors streams, gathers historic facts, preserves buildings, and brings people together to celebrate this beautiful valley. He signed the treaty.

The signing of a Treaty of Friendship was held in the River Sanctuary Pavilion at Shawnee Inn on Aug. 12.

A sign in the pavilion read: "The Indians considered this valley a sanctuary to which they returned each year. While here, they were peaceful and reverent. The Great Spirit had provided such beauty and abundance."

At 4 p.m. an Indian song, "Gotcha," floated down the Delaware River ahead of the canoes and kayaks that were bringing the Lenape to Shawnee. The singer was Dan Reese, a professional singer with a drum (musical group) in New York.

Saturday, August 16, 2014
Jordan Reabold/Times News Jeff Stansbury, who has taken his first full-time position as pastor, said members of Bethany ECin Lehighton have graciously welcomed him.

For Jeff Stansbury, the new pastor at Bethany Evangelical Congregational Church in Lehighton, leading a church means more than standing at a pulpit, reading Scripture and shaking hands on Sunday morning.

He's a people person, and he hopes to establish rapport with not only his congregation, but the general public as well.

"Relationships are very important," Stansbury said.

After graduating from Evangelical Seminary in Myerstown this May, he served as assistant pastor for First EC Church in a town called Palmyra, near Hershey.