November 23, 2016
Christmas season opens Friday
Students from Marvine and Freemansburg elementary schools were the guests of honor at the Mayor’s Christmas Tree decorating party Nov. 18 at Payrow Plaza. The third graders were treated to a variety of gifts and activities which included a visit by Santa and Mrs. Claus and music by 25 members of the Freedom HS Patriot Band. Volunteers from the Moravian College women’s soccer team, Cops ‘n’ Kids Children’s Literacy Program and the Bethlehem Police Department participated in the children’s event which also offered treats and lunch for the kids.
Photo: Bethlehem Police Captain Bill Dosedlo holds Savanah Spingre of Freemansburg ES so she can attach her decorated holiday ornament to the Mayor’s Christmas Tree at Payrow Plaza.
By Tim Gilman
City taxes remain unchanged
Days after a nationwide election shocker, Mayor Bob Donchez eased some tensions among local business leaders at Moravian College Nov. 11 during his annual Lehigh Valley Chamber breakfast at Moravian College by delivering good news: His proposed 2017 budget is balanced and there will be no need for a tax increase. He also explained the city’s massive debt has been whittled down by many millions of dollars in the past few years. “Each year, we have quantified the value of our five-year cumulative deficit. If you recall in 2014, we measured this five-year deficit as over $40MM. We have made incremental progress each year. I am pleased to report that, based on the proposed 2017 budget, the five-year deficit is now reduced to $12.8M. This is great progress, but the challenges remain and it will demand our continued effort and creativity.”
By Nate Jastrzemski
‘A talented educational leader’
Bethlehem Area School District’s own Superintendent Dr. Joseph Roy Nov. 17 was recognized by the Pennsylvania Association of School Administrators as the 2017 Pennsylvania superintendent of the year. According to the PASA’s release, since his tenure began in August 2010, Roy established a “Roadmap to Educational Excellence” plan, introduced restorative practices to improve behavior in the high schools, implemented full-day kindergarten and continues to provide constant positive communication and community engagement.
By Nate Jastrzemski
Veterans remembered at several venues
Maj. Gen. Gerard Still, president of the Lehigh Valley Military Affairs Council, was the featured speaker for the 9th annual Veterans’ Remembrance Service on Veterans Day at the Cantelmi-Long Funeral Home in Bethlehem. The American Legion Post 379 honor guard participated in the outdoor event. State Representative Steve Samuelson presented certificates of honor to family members of local deceased veterans. Photo: Joe Herkaco of the American Legion Post 379 plays “Taps” at the conclusion of the Veterans’ Remembrance Service.
By Tim Gilman
The United Steelworkers Union and Lehigh Valley Chapter of Nam Knights teamed up on Veterans’ Day at the Third Street Armed Forces Memorial to pay tribute to those who served. In a ceremony attended by about 70 people, every veteran who was present was asked to come forward and identify himself. Each was provided with a carnation and a handwritten “Thank you” note written by a Broughal MS student. Photo: Members of the Nam Knights honor veterans with carnations and handwritten notes from students at Broughal MS.
By Bernie O’Hare
Northampton Community College and local officials welcomed members of the storied 65th Infantry Regiment Nov. 10 to celebrate its members’ exceptional service for Veterans Day. The regiment was the only Hispanic-segregated unit in U.S. Army history, and is now immortalized in a documentary honoring its historic actions in World War II and Korea. The name “Borinqueneers” is derived from the native name for the island of Puerto Rico. Photo: Veteran Borinqueneers, family members who accepted awards on the behalf of deceased members, friends, officials and Hispanic members of the Nam Knights wrap up the ceremony together at NCC’s Lipkin Theater.
The National Museum of Industrial History in South Bethlehem celebrated Veterans Day with guest speakers and exhibits honoring American veterans and the workers of Bethlehem Steel. An exhibit of the 75th anniversary of the “E” Flag and related items that recognized the production excellence of Bethlehem Steel during World War II was featured in the hallway entrance to the museum. Photo: Kitsa Behringer, education coordinator of the National Museum of Industrial History, helps museum visitors make souvenir paper Bethlehem Steel “E” pennants.
By Tim Gilman,
Ground broken for parking garage
Celebrating years of effort by standing in fresh dirt, officials gathered Friday on the Southside to announce the New Street car park is now on its way. The $15 million deck will provide 626 parking spaces for the typically congested neighboring streets and businesses and is due to open next summer. Said Mayor Bob Donchez, “This is a long time coming.” Photo: Lynn Collins-Cunningham joins Sen. Lisa Boscola, Mayor Bob Donchez and Parking Authority members to make their ceremonial dirt-toss.
By Nate Jastrzemski
More than 300 people from 10 countries attended the three-day International Institute of Restorative Practices’ World Conference held in October at the Hotel Bethlehem and the IIRP’s graduate school campus on Main Street in Historic Bethlehem. Countries represented included Pakistan, Australia, the Netherlands, Singapore and Canada. Restorative practices is an emerging social science that studies ways to restore and develop social well-being and interaction through participatory learning and decision-making. The institute in Bethlehem is the world’s first graduate school devoted exclusively to teaching restorative practices. It offers a master of science degree and a graduate certificate locally and, with is partners, provides train-the-trainer programs worldwide. Photo: Conciliation specialists Mildred Duprey de Robles and Kim Milstead use group “circles” to foster dialogue and understanding in communities wracked with racial violencein their work with the DOJ’s Community Relations Service.
By Carole Gorney
Fright Night in the city
Yoshi Tsugiyama hands out treats to Abigale Fotta in a peacock costume and Benjamin Zambrana as a banana. Jennifer Fotta of Bethlehem and Alicia Kozak of Allentown accompanied their children. Tsugiyama, a new Wall Street resident originally from Japan, said it was his first trick or treat night experience.
By Tim Gilman
‘Safe’ night’ at St. Mark’s
featured a “well-supervised” agenda organized by the church along Easton Avenue. Pumpkin decorating, hayrides, games, crafts, sweet treats and food are part of the free event for church members and guests from the community. Children are encouraged to wear Halloween costumes to the three-hour family-friendly event. Photo: Ava Coulter picks out a pumpkin after a hayride on the grounds of St. Marks’ Lutheran Church. Ava was with her father Chad Coulter of Bethlehem.
By Tim Gilman
Foundation celebrates 50th
The Lehigh Valley Community Foundation (LVCF) celebrated its 50th anniversary, by doing what it does best: Making grants to community organizations that work to improve the lives of those in the Lehigh Valley. Bernie Story, president and CEO of LVCF, welcomed the group of over 200 community members to the kick-off in the Fowler Blast Furnace Room at SteelStacks recently. Photo: Curtis “Hank” Barnette, a former governor of the Community Foundation, is joined by Bernie Story, far right, to present the Spark Grant Kick-off check to Lynn and Don Cunningham in support of Bethlehem’s 275th Anniversary Legacy gift.
Hawks advance in state play-offs
There are plenty of things to be grateful for during the Thanksgiving holiday, but if you’re a local high school football program who’s still playing, a Thursday practice might be just as satisfying as a roasted turkey. Bethlehem Catholic coaches and players certainly acted that way following last week’s 51-20 victory over Pottsgrove in the opening round of the PIAA 4A quarterfinals at Northern Lehigh.
By Peter Car
Great images come to mind when you think of a “Symphony Orchestra on Ice.”I can see the tuba player skating along next to the piccolo player, and maybe the cellists sitting on chairs being pushed by the percussion section, but it got a little tricky when I tried to figure out how they would hold their music, skate and play their instruments all at the same time.
By Diane Wittry
South Bethlehem: Casino expansion planned
Bethlehem: Atria community shows support
Bethlehem: Library book sale begins Nov. 30
Fountain Hill: No tax increase in 2017 budget
Freemanbsurg: Locktender’s house restoration under way
Lehigh County: Safe Schools meeting draws large crowd
State: Pa. coroner’s release over dose report
Around town community calendar
Center for Animal Health and Welfare
High school news reports
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