Springing into summer
April 20: Joined Dave Rinaldi, president of Clarks Green and Councilmen Keith Williams and Alan Hughes at the re-dedication of Baptist Bible College. It is now Summit University. How proud to be there as elected officials. Accompanying me were Gerrie Carey, president, Clarks Summit Borough; and councilmen Dominic Scott, Dave Jenkins and Jim Klein.
April 21: Attended the awards banquet hosted by the Abington Journal at the Ramada. Accepting my award: Best Elected Official of the Abingtons. I was humbled. Thank you so much.
April 25: Participated in Community Clean Up Day. Councilmen Jenkins and Klein clipped shrubs and bagged branches. Gathering Place board members Mary Ann Nichols, Dori Waters and Emily Rancier cleaned and swept in front of the borough hall. A “Grunge Team” was in motion at the Pocket Park. Seen clearing rocks from the lot were Borough Solicitor Pat Rogan with wife Julia Munley, Clarks Summit United Methodist Church Pastor Amy Racer and Bonnie Adams, a resident of Knapp Road.
Meanwhile, Boy Scouts from Troop 150, Gerrie Carey and Sue Van Horn, of Frontier Communications, assisted the Shred Fest at Clarks Summit Elementary. Before leaving, the huge truck was filled to the brim. Thanks to our residents for participating. Shred Fest will be held next spring, the Saturday after Earth Day. Same day, same station, thanks to Frontier Communications.
May 21: An opportunity to tour the “overhaul” at Met Life. I was duly impressed with open space, a productive-producing working environment. Met Life is an example of a job-generator, employing hundreds from Northeastern Pennsylvania. How lucky can our community be?
Memorial Day: Always an honor and a pleasure walking in the Memorial Day Parade. Seeing the seniors, the veterans, our neighbors, the children, our families along the parade route is so heartwarming. Our community celebrates together. What more could a mayor want?
June 1: Honored to be a guest at the Abington Heights Civic League dinner meeting. A lot of positive energy there. It was delightful.
June 6: Working the flea market/craft fair sponsored by the ladies auxiliary of the fire company.
June 10: Didn’t miss the chicken barbecue at Clarks Green United Methodist Church. However, I did miss the barbecue at Clarks Summit United Methodist, so a donation from me is in the mail.
June 11: Big event for the Rotarians of the Abingtons. Dedication of the club’s Pocket Library at the Pocket Park on Depot Street. What an event — a picnic lunch provided by Sunrise Cafe and an attendance that broke a record. Spirits were high as Pocket Library No. 17,238 was dedicated. Rotarian Eileen Christian, chair of the library project, cut the ribbon and placed the first book inside: The Bible. This Pocket Library will remain authentic and is registered along with all official Pocket Libraries around the world.
June 13: Helped at the Forever Young Fishing Derby at Hillside Park. I love being there — outside with families of all sizes/shapes.
June 19: Clarks Green Council President Dave Rinaldi hosted a luncheon honoring Jan Brown. Relocating to California, Jan was real estate tax collector of Clarks Green, as well as secretary-treasurer. Clarks Summit Borough Council President Gerrie Carey and Code Enforcement Officer Lori Harris joined me at the celebration. We had the opportunity to meet Joanne Cullbertson. She will continue Jan’s work without skipping a beat.
Pocket Park news
All of May and June, the Pocket Park on Depot Street progressed through a flurry of transitions. “Pockets” of talented people joined me. Sidewalks installed, pavilion relocated, reality sets in. I’m going to need a lot of help ridding the lots of hundreds of rocks and spreading mountain upon mountain of topsoil.
Offering their turn of volunteering were Sarah Dawgert and her husband Jim. Followed by Ann McGinley, Dave Evans and Jon Thomas from the Abington Senior Center. Ann alternated raking with mulching. Jon alternated raking with his masonry work. Jon designed and built the two raised garden beds. Jack McLain alternated raking with sanding and painting all the lawn furniture. Jack’s wife Joann and Abington members of the Laurel Garden Club joined with seeding, fertilizing and watering the lawns. Soon the garden club was planting and what a good job they did.
Garden of Meditation design by Bonnie Adams. The Northern Raised Bed designed by Mickey Mastriani and Joan McLain. Detailing the entire landscaping were Jim Scanlon and wife Joann, Ann McGinley, Mary Curra and Antonella Hlavac. “Chief Grunge” was “yours truly.”
Within 24 hours, the white picket fence and wide gates were installed. The Pocket Park on Depot Street is waiting for you to visit. Please come.
St. Joseph’s Center benefit
An invitation: Rain or shine, from 5 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 13, I’ll host a craft fair in the Pocket Park. Perfect opportunity to visit the park and enjoy refreshment. Vendors include Concrete Thinking, Paintings by Leon, Sally Designs, Bracelets by Bella, The Mad Batter, Bottles by Kim, Bob’s Woodworking and more.
Police department news
Thank you Hemlock Park residents for appreciating our police officers. Your texts were well received. Once Chief Yarns and I were notified of the mischief at the park, extra police patrols were assigned, day and night. Council, without hesitation, voted to install a high-grade chain length fence to surround the entire park. Glad to report Chief Yarns informed me last week, “The park is back to being a park.”
Upon hearing the fate of Officer John Wilding, the chief immediately contacted Scranton Police Chief Graziano and I contacted Mayor Courtwright to offer our deepest condolences and prompt assistance. Clarks Summit Police Department joined other departments fielding emergency calls going in to Scranton during the service for Officer Wilding. Returning the next day, two of our vehicles and police officers assisted with traffic control during the funeral. Our hearts remain with the Wilding family during this difficult time.
Chief Yarns is scheduled to report to Camp Cadet this month. Located at the 9-1-1 Center, regional police chiefs gather to sponsor a picnic for youngsters interested in someday having a career in law enforcement.