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Herndon FC holds ninth annual car show

MANDATA — The Herndon Fire Co.’s ninth annual car show rolled into Line Mountain High School’s parking lot on Sunday with an impressive array of 45 vintage classic cars.

Proceeds from the show, which kicked off at 9 a.m. and concluded at 3 p.m., benefited the fire company in a variety of ways, such as the purchase of new apparatus, turnout gear and maintenance.

Repeat visitors Randy and Betty Schleig, of Shamokin, sat under umbrellas on the hot summer morning alongside their vintage black 1930 Model A Ford.

“So far it looks like a good turnout. We don’t get to come all the time but were here twice before and really liked it,” said Randy.

A few car doors down, Ron and Nancy Heim, of Dalmatia, sat underneath a large portable canopy right behind their coral-and-gray 1955 Chevy Bel Air.

“This is our second year. We attend car shows all over the country, including Louisville, Columbus and Syracuse,” Nancy said. “There’s also a big event going on down in York today with over 1,000 vehicles. We do about 10 car shows a year and last week we were over at Bloomsburg.”

The Herndon show is settling into its new venue.

“This is the second year we’ve held the show here at the high school due to past flooding at the Herndon Ballfield, which served as the previous location,” Herndon Deputy Fire Chief Ron Hinkley said. “We greatly appreciate the support of all of our sponsors. Some of them have been with us from the beginning, while others are new.”

Hinkley said some of the car owners who attended the event came from as far away as Middleburg. There were 18 classifications, with first- and second-place trophies being awarded to the top finishers in each class. Trophies were also presented for the People’s Choice Award, Best in Show and Chief’s Choice.

Hinkley went on to say that the Herndon Fire Co. always appreciates the support of local businesses and residents. Entry fees for the event were $15 for pre-registered participants and $20 for same day.

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Peach of a day for Rohrbach's annual festival

CATAWISSA RR — Saturday was a “peach of a day” at Rohrbach’s Farm Market as the business kicked off its annual peach festival, which was well-attended by several hundred visitors.

With all the peaches harvested, there were plenty of delicious homemade food items to choose from, including homemade peach dumplings with Maurer’s peace ice cream, peach pie, peach eclairs, peach jams and, of course, fresh peaches themselves.

“Our peach festival is a wonderful way for people to come and experience our farm up-close and in a hands-on way,” said Rohrbach’s owner, Denise Bosworth. “We love creating the opportunity to help our community understand more about how farming is an important part of our food source as well as enjoy seasonal harvests.”

Bosworth indicated that, due to an early spring frost, a number of Rohrbach’s peach blossoms were lost. As a result, the crop was a bit smaller this year.

“We still have peaches, and we know how much everyone enjoys the peach festival so we talked about ways to still make it a fun experience on the farm,” said Bosworth.

“This is the first year we are hosting a ‘Touch-a-Tractor’ event and we want it to be an opportunity for kids to be up-close with the equipment they enjoy,” she added. “There is a contrast between the old vintage tractors and the modern equipment that we now use. There is so much technology involved in modern farming, and a look inside a cab will no doubt interest youth in learning more about agriculture.”

Rohrbach’s Farm has been in the community for over 60 years, and Bosworth said her family’s business wants to continue to uphold the trust that its neighbors far and near have placed in them as a market and food grower, as well as, to continue to set an example of modern, safe and environmentally-conscious farming practices.

Rohrbach’s will have a second peach festival this Saturday, with plenty of homegrown and local peaches in their farm market, along with a summer harvest picnic featuring smoked sweet corn and smoked peaches by Big Dan’s BBQ and bluegrass tunes from 1 to 3 p.m.

When it comes to farming the peaches, Bosworth explained that it’s a year-round job.

“We have 600 peach trees on 8 acres of farm land to care for and maintain year-round,” she noted. “We carry about a dozen or more homemade peach items at our farm market.”

Bruce and Donna Kerper, of White Haven, said they visit Knoebels Amusement Resort each summer and plan for a stop at Rohrbach’s farm market on every trip.

“They’re all very friendly and nice here,” the Kerpers’ daughter, Erica Croft, said of Rohrbach’s. “We bought all kinds of stuff today.”

Seated at a picnic table and enjoying their peach dumplings were Joanne Watkins, of Mifflinville, and her friend Raine Presley, of Numidia.

“This is my first time here. They’re delicious,” said Watkins.

Presley added, “My dumpling is scrumpdillyicious.”

Farm equipment rides

This was the first year that Rohrbach’s allowed young children to get an up-close look at their farming equipment and go on rides.

Andrea Smith, whose son, Parker, rode on a combine, expressed her gratitude toward Rohrbach’s for providing a valuable and fun-filled learning experience for young people.

“I love that the kids have the opportunity to ride along in the farming equipment and learn more about how they work,” she said.

Ethan Funk, a farm hand at Rohrbach’s, said, “We take them out on the tractors and combine. This is our first year for these rides.”

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Lourdes celebrating 60th year in providing quality, Catholic education

COAL TOWNSHIP — Our Lady of Lourdes Regional School is celebrating its 60th year of providing a quality, Catholic education to students. Several events will be held throughout the school year to mark the special anniversary.

About 500 students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade at Lourdes will start the new school year this week.

High school students (grades seven to 12) will attend school Tuesday, while students in grades one to six will begin classes Wednesday. Students in pre-kindergarten and kindergarten will report for classes Thursday and Friday with early dismissal at noon both days.

All students will attend classes Monday, Aug. 26.

“We are really excited to begin the new school year and are looking forward to welcoming students and providing them with a fine Catholic education,” said Sister Maureen Donati, elementary school principal. “We are anticipating a great year.”

Donati and Sister Mary Anne Bednar, school administrator and high school principal, praised the faculty and staff for their dedication in preparing for the new school year.

Several cosmetic improvements have been made throughout the campus.

This year will feature multiple new teachers on the elementary and high school levels.

Zachary Gerber will serve as technology coordinator for the school and teach computer technology to seventh- and eighth-grade students.

Katrina Dietz, Deacon Tom Conlin, Brandon Mowery, Michael Schoppy and Brian Christiana will teach high school science, religion, music, English and history, respectively.

Brianna McPeak will teach seventh- and eighth-grade religion and language arts. Taryn Zayas will serve as seventh- and eighth-grade reading and writing teacher.

Janine Dusendschine will be the new secretary in the high school guidance department.

On the elementary level, new teachers include Lori Dresher (pre-K), Jennifer Forte (kindergarten), Heather Feese (kindergarten), Marie Mielke (second grade), Jennifer Herb (fourth grade) and Megan Stelma (fifth grade).

Sister Teresa Catherine Walsh will serve as liturgist.

Donati said a Google classroom program will be implemented schoolwide this year.

New this year on the elementary level will be a virtue program featuring the beatitudes and a student of the month award.

Donati said the popular bio-medical program continues to grow on the high school level.

Administrators and faculty completed classroom management classes taught by international education speakers Drs. Harry and Rosemary Wong. They also became certified in mental health first aid.

The school held its annual Raiderfest Community Fun Day on Aug. 17 on the school grounds and will sponsor its annual Winefest at the school from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 28.

A special Mass incorporating the 60th anniversary “Diamond Celebration” theme will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Friday, Nov. 1 (All Saints Day) in the gymnatorium.

A 60th anniversary gala will be held at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 2, at Brady Fire Co.’s banquet hall.

Lourdes, which was initially established as St. Edward High School in 1892, is the oldest high school in the Diocese of Harrisburg.

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History of Music in the Park

SHAMOKIN — For the past six years, the Music in the Park summer concert series has provided free entertainment with various artists, groups and bands performing live on stage at Claude E. Kehler Memorial Park.

Dave Spotts, organizer of Music in the Park, recently talked about the history of the event. Spotts, who is also a member of the After Hours Big Band, has a love of music, which is shared by many.

“In 2014, I approached Shamokin City Council with a request to allow me to present a free concert featuring our After Hours Big Band at the bandshell in Claude Kehler Memorial Park,” he recalled. “I had performed there in the past with other local bands and thought it would be great to bring After Hours in for a concert.”

Spotts recounted many memories of past events at the park involving music including carnivals, concerts, and church picnics, which ultimately led him to want to bring concerts to that venue.

“Our first concert event back in 2014 was a two-hour performance with no food or other vendors. After Hours played to a large, enthusiastic crowd of music lovers,” he said.

Riding on the success of that first concert in the park, Spotts and his band returned again the following year for a reprise, which was also well-attended.

According to Spotts, later on in 2015, councilwoman Barbara Moyer approached him about the possibility of expanding the single concert format, asking if he would be willing to bring in a variety of bands to the park, in addition to After Hours, for the following season.

“I thought this was a great idea, so I picked four dates (all Saturdays) and hired four different bands to play at the park for what would become the first concert series,” said Spotts. City council approved a budget for the payment of fees for the bands.

During the 2016 season, Spotts was introduced to members of the Shamokin CERT Team who were interested in operating a concession stand at the remaining events.

Spotts recalled, “We formed a partnership that became the Music in the Park Committee.

Following a highly successful 2016 concert series, seven bands were booked for 2017. The concession stand also expanded its menu as well.

The committee did quite well with the food concession and attendance at all of the Music in the Park summer concert events exceeded expectations. Because of this, Spotts decided to “go big” in 2018, asking local businesses for sponsorship in anticipation of having an even busier year and the response was overwhelming.

Supported through the generosity of the local businesses, along with other civic organizations and community members, Spotts began planning for the 2018 season.

“We had 16 concerts scheduled for 2018. In spite of a rainy summer season, attendance was good at the events. However, we had to cancel a concert for the first time due to flooding throughout central Pennsylvania,” Spotts recalled. “We also added an event in October to gauge interest in having an event later in the year. After Hours Big Band was hired for the concert and it went well.

Shamokin Mayor John Brown suggested that Spotts bring back After Hours for the fall event. A number of additional food vendors were also added in 2018, along with Wednesday concerts, which were successful as well.

This year, Music in the Park will feature a total of 18 events, and a 2020 concert series is in the works.

At the city’s first fall festival scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 19, Double Talk will perform from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., followed by Memory Lane from 3 to 6 p.m. Vendor spots are available for $25.

Spotts also pointed out that The Wayside Inn will host a “Money for Music” event from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 28, with 15% of all food sales benefiting Music in the Park.

“We support local musicians and venues by also promoting the Trevorton Community Concert Series and events held in Mount Carmel,” he said. “If anyone is interested in sponsoring the concert series, please speak with me at any event or by calling 570-898-2377.”

Spotts expressed his sincere gratitude toward the City of Shamokin’s leaders, businesses and citizens for their continued support.

“Music in the Park would not exist without the support of the City of Shamokin, which permits us to use the park for each concert event,” he explained. “The city also provides funding that offsets approximately half of the entertainment fees for the musical acts. The rest of our budget is met through the generosity of sponsors and concession sales.”

All concert series events are free of charge and open to the public.

“We are a volunteer organization, bringing live music featuring local artists to the community,” he said.

City council support

Moyer reflected back upon her initial 2014 meeting with Spotts about the concept of Music in the Park.

“Following the successful and enjoyable celebration of Shamokin’s 150th birthday, enthusiasm was running high as everyone could feel the excitement of the crowds that flocked to our city, along with our local residents who came out and enjoyed the festivities,” she said.

“We all got a glimpse of the Shamokin where we grew up and a little bit of nostalgia could be felt everywhere.”

Moyer recalled that back in 2014, Spotts wanted to know if the city would back a summer concert series and asked if she could help make it possible as the city’s Director of Parks and Public Buildings at the time.

“I jumped on board immediately. Back then, Shamokin was facing some serious decisions concerning its financial circumstance but we both felt that our citizens needed and deserved something to look forward to, some quality of life activities,” she said.

Spotts and Moyer met several times before presenting a plan/request to the former mayor and city council members with everyone being on board.

{span}Since that time, Brown and current council members have continued to be very supportive of the concert series. They’ve publicly expressed that Spotts and his group of volunteers do an excellent job of organizing the series each year.{/span}

“I really believe that Music in the Park has provided a springboard for so many other activities that have flourished here in Shamokin,” Moyer said. “Volunteers and supporters have started coming forward to devote their time and resources for the betterment of our community.

“We are reaching into our past to help make Shamokin come alive again and each activity and event provides another step forward in achieving that goal,” she added. “I’m very proud to be a small part of the movement that we are experiencing in Shamokin and especially with Music in the Park.”