Mayoral Candidate Forum
The three Democratic Bloomsburg mayoral candidates squaring off in the May primary election appeared at a forum Monday night at the Moose Exchange. Eric Bower, Sandy Davis and Diane Levan spoke on subjects ranging from flood protection to being a business friendly community. All told WHLM News they got their message out. Davis, Bower and Levan face each other in the May 21st primary. The Columbia – Montour Chamber of Commerce sponsored last night's forum.
A state police investigator says he believes a pre – dawn fire in Shickshinny Monday started at the rear of a home... on the first floor... and spread upward. Randi and Joe Feno... their two kids and pets... made it out of the burning structure at 21 West Butler Street. Firefighters knew they had a tough job on their hands when they arrived at the scene... so they called in mutual aid from Mocanaqua... Salem Township and Berwick.
No one was injured.
The first of three liquor privatization hearings is on tap later today in the state Senate. Supporters called it "historic" when a liquor privatization bill finally passed the House, but things will only get tougher in the Senate. The chairman of the Law & Justice Committee, Chuck McIlhinney, says he supports "smart privatization," and he's scheduled three hearings to help them achieve the goals of privatization, without the unintended consequences.
Several bills in the "Marcellus Works" package of legislation are on the move at the state capitol. It's part of a Republican-led effort. WHLM's Matt Paul, working out of our Harrisburg News Bureau tells us “Marcellus Works" would provide a series of tax credits and loans to spur investment in natural gas-powered vehicles and infrastructure. State Representative Stan Saylor says the technology and energy are here, so it makes sense on multiple levels: both reducing our dependence on foreign oil and creating more private sector jobs. Three of nine bills have already passed the House.
Millard / Pensions
Still no resolution in sight on the Pennsylvania pension crisis. Pensions for current and past state workers are costing the commonwealth billions of dollars a year... and State Representative David Millard of Mt. Pleasant Township is heading up a sub – committee to come up with a solution to the issue. Millard said trying to find a solution is not an easy task... but lawmakers... in his words... “won't kick the can down the road.”
NEPA Gas Prices
The cost of a gallon of self – serve, unleaded regular has dropped somewhat. The latest Triple – A Fuel Gauge report from across northeastern Pennsylvania... including the Columbia – Montour County area... is averaging $3.40 a gallon. More in some locations... less at others. That's down three cents from a week ago... and 21 - cents off from what we were paying a month ago.
A closing of a long time school in McAdoo is etched in stone. McAdoo Catholic Elementary school will close at the end of the year. The decision made after months of study... and due to declining enrollment and not enough money to make ends meet. McAdoo Catholic Elementary has been a fixture in the area for the past 50 years. Students now have the option to transfer to a Catholic School in Tamaqua.
Officials with the Hazleton Area School District are trying to hammer out a contract agreement with the teachers union although the work agreement doesn't expire until August. Health care and pay raises are the two points of contention. While that goes on... two other unions are working under the terms of a contract that expired two years ago... as well as a third union working under the terms of a contract that expired a year ago.
Hit & Run Suspect Held
A Wyoming Valley man is headed to court... charged in the hit and run death of a 5 – year old boy. A magistrate has ruled there is enough evidence to send the case of Thomas Letteer of Plains Township to Luzerne County Court. He's charged with the December death of 5 – year old Kevin Miller of Dallas... who he allegedly hit with his car while the child and his father were crossing North Street in Wilkes – Barre.
Even though they won ten games and made the postseason playoffs, the Bloomsburg University football team struggled on defense last season giving up just under 30 points a game. Interim head coach Paul Darraugh says improvements on defense has been an emphasis this spring. The Huskies will conclude spring drills this week with the annual Maroon & Gold game Friday night at 7 O'clock.
In high school baseball yesterday... Montgomery downed Benton 3 to 1... Sullivan County defeated Bloomsburg 10 – 6... and it was Central Columbia over Lewisburg 11 to 3.
In major league baseball, the Phillies had the night off. They will open a two game series tonight in Cleveland against the Indians. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pregame show at 6:30.
In games last night... It took 15 innings, but the Miami Marlins got by the New York Mets 4 – 3... the Milwaukee Brewers took the measure of the Pittsburgh Pirates 10 – 4... and the Houston Astros defeated the New York Yankees 9 – 1.
In the NBA playoffs last night... Brooklyn rallied past Chicago 110 – 91... Atlanta downed Indiana 102 to 91... and Houston just got by Oklahoma City 105 – 103.
Shickshinny Fire Folo
A Shickshinny family of four made it out of their burning home early Monday morning... leaving the burning two story structure with nothing more than what was on their backs. The first alarm went in for 21 West Butler around 3 AM... and moments later the Shickshinny Fire Department asked for help from Mocanaqua... Salem Township and Berwick. Neighbor Albert Gensel telling our media partner Newswatch 16... he made sure the Joe Feno family was safe. Feno... his wife and two kids... as well as their pets made it out safely. Now... a state police fire marshal says the blaze began at the rear of the home... on the first floor... and spread upward.
The three Democratic Bloomsburg mayoral candidates squaring off in the May primary election appeared at a forum Monday night at the Moose Exchange. Eric Bower, Sandy Davis and Diane Levan spoke on subjects ranging from flood protection to being a business friendly community. In a post – forum interview... Bower, Davis and Levan said they got their message out. The three face each other in the May 21st primary. The Columbia – Montour Chamber of Commerce sponsored Monday night's forum.
The 35th annual Renaissance Jamboree in Bloomsburg over the weekend was what everyone expected... aided by blue skies and temperatures in the lower 70's. For Bloomsburg Mayor Dan Knorr... the weather and Jamboree was needed to break the area out of the winter doldrums. Not only did vendors reap the rewards of Saturday... so did business up and down Main Street... as well as the side streets... such as Iron... Center and Market Streets.
Tearing down unused buildings along Bloomsburg Main Street... and building new, up to date structures. That's what will happen this summer when the former Cole's Hardware store along East Main is demolished and in it's place... a new four story building for the Bloomsburg University Foundation. That makes Downtown Bloomsburg, Incorporated manager Adrienne Mael very happy. The new construction was made possible through a million dollar gift from Duane Greenly and his wife... both 1972 BU graduates.
A Benton man is recovering from injuries received over the weekend in a bull riding accident. EMS was called to the the bull riding ring on Shade Ridge Road in Benton Township around 9 O'clock Friday night for an unresponsive rider. The Press – Enterprise is reporting in Monday's edition.. Cody Fronk is in critical condition recovering from his injuries at the Geisinger Medical Center in Danville. Fronk falling from a bull during practice night at the ring.
More road construction is slated along West Front Street in Berwick this week. Starting Monday... Barletta Construction and Materials is expected to begin excavating the right lane of West Front from Dunkin' Donuts to Market Street. They'll first rip up the old pavement.... then place a sub – base... followed by two or three new layers of blacktop. That work is expected to be wrapped up by May 8th.
Wilkes – Barre Fire
Investigators will be back at a vacant home on Carlisle Street in Wilkes – Barre Monday... trying to figure out why the house went up in flames early Sunday morning. Although no official cause is given, neighbors say they believe it's suspicious. Neighbors say the house has been attracting the homeless for some time.
Kids Sexually Assaulted
State Police say a woman who allegedly brought two children to the state prison at Retreat in Luzerne County is now behind bars. 41 – year old Rebecca Butler allegedly brought two children to see 51 – year old Andre Vancliff... an inmate serving a life sentence at Retreat. That's when Vancliff allegedly sexually assaulted the kids between May and September of last year. Authorities have not released the relationship between Butler and Vancliff...and the kids. Butler is facing charges... and is lodged in jail with bail set at $25,000.
Hazleton Rail Bridge
That railroad bridge over South Church Street could be spruced up in the near future... as talks between Hazleton Government and the Norfolk – Southern Railroad continue. The city says the graffiti – laden bridge is an eyesore... while the railroad told the city not to make any moves to remove the writing and then re-paint it. For years the bridge has been a target of vandals... and the walkway under the bridge has deteriorated.
St. Luke’s Lutheran Church presents a “St. Luke Family Musical” this afternoon at 1:30 PM. Donations will be collected to benefit the Kidsburg 2.0 committee.
The Bloomsburg High School Drama and Chorus program is hosting a “Soup and Song” event today at the Caldwell Consistory from 1:00 to 3:30 PM. $10 gets you in to try out different homemade soups, bread, and beverages. Proceeds benefit a trip to New York City.
Camp Victory is hosting a basket bingo today with Longaberger Baskets, food, concessions, door prizes and more. Doors open at 2:00 PM and bingo starts at 3:00 PM.
The Buckhorn Fire Hall is hosting bingo to benefit the EOS Therapeutic Riding Center today. Doors open at Noon and games begin at 1:00 PM. It’s a purse bingo with door prizes and raffles.
It’s the 35th annual Renaissance Jamboree in Downtown Bloomsburg today. Craft vendors, non-profits, entertainment and more will fill Main Street for a day of fun. Free parking is available at the Bloomsburg Fairgrounds.
Stop by the WHLM Booth at the festival and say hi, while you’re there enter to win dinner at the Lightstreet Hotel and tickets for The Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble’s “Superior Donuts.”
Local police departments and the Columbia County Conservation District are taking back unwanted, unused, and expired prescription drugs today.
The Children’s Museum is hosting “The Best Holiday Ever” today. All day long they have events planned to celebrate all of the major holidays.
The Montour Delong Fairgrounds are hosting a haddock fish dinner this afternoon from 3:00 to 7:00 PM.
The Washingtonville Volunteer Fire Company is serving up a chicken bar-b-que dinner today from 3:00 to 6:00 PM.
Town Hill United Methodist Church invites you to their ice cream social from 4:30 to 6:30 PM this afternoon.
The Hetlerville United Methodist Church is hosting a hymn sing tonight at 7:00 PM. And Mt. Zion United Methodist Church presents The Skyline Boys in concert at 7:00 PM tonight.
St. Luke’s Lutheran Church presents a “St. Luke Family Musical” tonight at 6:00 PM, and tomorrow afternoon at 1:30 PM. Donations will be collected to benefit the Kidsburg 2.0 committee.
The Bloomsburg High School Drama and Chorus program is hosting a “Soup and Song” event tomorrow at the Caldwell Consistory from 1:00 to 3:30 PM. $10 gets you in to try out different homemade soups, bread, and beverages. Proceeds benefit a trip to New York City.
Camp Victory is hosting a basket bingo tomorrow with Longaberger Baskets, food, concessions, door prizes and more. Doors open at 2:00 PM and bingo starts at 3:00 PM.
The Buckhorn Fire Hall is hosting bingo to benefit the EOS Therapeutic Riding Center tomorrow. Doors open at Noon and games begin at 1:00 PM. It’s a purse bingo with door prizes and raffles.
BU Foundation to Expand
A Bloomsburg University graduate and his wife are giving back to the town. Duane Greenly... a '68 graduate of Bloomsburg High School... and a '72 graduate of BU are giving a $1 – million gift to the University foundation. The gift will be used to knock down the former Cole's Hardware building... and in it's place the 44,700 – thousand square foot Greenly Center will take will be built. Demolition will begin in August... with the building constructed by the following summer. The four story building will house the offices of the B-U Foundation... and several other tenants... and have underground parking. The announcement was made Friday morning exclusively on the WHLM Morning Buzz.
The Sick Susquehanna
The small mouth bass in the Susquehanna River are sick. WHLM's Matt Paul is reporting that a new report makes the case for accelerated pollution controls. That report from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation calls it a perfect storm of pollution, parasites and warming water temperatures, which cannot be ignored. At issue is a 98-mile stretch of the Susquehanna River from Sunbury to the Maryland state line. The diseased and dying fish were first discovered in 2005, and Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission executive director John Arway has been tracking the decline ever since. The state DEP did not list the Susquehanna as an impaired river and plans more testing, but the report calls on the federal EPA to reverse that decision under the authority of the Clean Water Act.
State income for April will be enough to cover expenditures. That word from State Revenue Secretary Dan Meuser who was in Berwick Thursday to talk to members of the Columbia – Montour Chamber of Commerce. Secretary Meuser says he hopes for an increase in sales tax... but the national economy is keeping that below estimates. Meuser says once there is more confidence in the national economy.... revenues coming into the state treasury will increase.
Millard / Pension
State lawmakers in Harrisburg continue to explore ways to change the pension plans of state employees... and they aren't having much success. State Representative David Millard says his subcommittee... part of the house appropriations committee... is still looking at a lot of studies. He says current contracts cannot be broken. However, Representative Millard went on to say there is a possibility that new hires could be placed into a defined contribution plan... as opposed to a defined benefit plan. But whatever the case... the state pension reform issue won't be solved overnight.
The Celebrity Artist Series at Bloomsburg University presents big name entertainment Friday night as singer – songwriter Kathy Mattea preforms on campus. BU's Randall Presswood says Ms. Mattea is a Grammy Award winning entertainer. Mattea preforms Friday night at the Haas Center for the Arts in Mitrani Hall.
Sunbury Water Treatment
Sunbury’s 53-year old water treatment plant will be totally upgraded as a result of funding approved this week by PENNVEST. That word from state Senator John R. Gordner of Berwick... and state Representative Lynda Culver of Sunbury. In essence... the PENNVEST board approved a $3 million low cost loan for the Sunbury Municipal Authority. The money to be used for new treatment units that meet current environmental standards... as well as associated mechanical equipment.
More construction work is on the agenda next week along Front Street in Berwick. Starting Monday... Barletta Construction and Materials will begin excavating the right lane of West Front from Dunkin' Donuts to Market Street. They'll place a sub – base... followed by two or three new layers of blacktop. That work is expected to be wrapped up by Wednesday, May 8th.
Geisinger / Bucknell
Officials from Geisinger Health System and Bucknell University has opened the Autism and Developmental Medicine Center in Lewisburg. Many believe it's a national model for implementing guidelines for early diagnosis... medication management... and treatment options for children with developmental disorders. The Geisinger - Bucknell Autism and Developmental Medicine Center is opening under the auspices of Geisinger’s Autism and Developmental Medicine Institute... a system-wide initiative of Geisinger’s Department of Research.
Wilkes – Barre Shooting
One person is dead... and another is in custody following a deadly shooting in Wilkes – Barre Thursday night. Police say it happened when a fight between some men on Coal Street spilled over onto Reno Lane. That's when a gunshot rang out. Thus far... the name of the victim hasn't been released nor the name of the suspect in custody.
Luzerne County Superior Court President Judge Correale Stevens may become a nominee for a spot on the State Supreme Court. State Senator Daylin Leach of Montgomery County has set a a letter to Governor Corbett... suggesting that Stevens replace outgoing Justice Joan Orie Melvin. Her resignation becomes effect the first of the month.
A former state senator... now serving prison time... has had his named removed from venues he helped to create. The name of Bob Mellow no longer exists at the theater named in his honor at the Lackawanna College in Scranton. Board members approving the removal of the name. His name is also coming down from Marywood University... as well as Keystone College.
This will be a very busy weekend for the Bloomsburg University softball team which will close out the regular season with back to back doubleheders at Hutchinson Field. Friday afternoon the Huskies take on Clarion with the first game starting at 2:30. Saturday's opponent will be Mansfield. That twinbill begins at 1 O'clock.
In girls softball Thursday... Loyalsock downed Central Columbia 4 – 3... Benton defeated Millville 15 – 5... It was Southern Columbia over Lewisburg 15 – to – nothing...
The Philadelphia Phillies lost to the Pittsburgh Pirates for the third time in four games. Thursday's final was 6-4. The Phils are in New York Friday night to take on the Mets in a weekend series. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pregame show at 6:30.
In other games yesterday, the Los Angeles Dodgers edged the New York Mets 3-2 and it was the New York Yankees getting by the Toronto Bluejays 5 to 3.
In the NBA playoffs Thursday night... Miami downed Milwaukee 104 – 91... Chicago getting by Brooklyn 79 – 76... and Memphis topped the Los Angeles Clippers 94 – 82.
After nearly a week of testimony... a Luzerne County Court jury has found 44 – year old Gail Schneider of Berwick guilty of arson. Schneider was convicted late Wednesday afternoon of torching a Lantern Lane office complex and apartment building in Conyngham in September of 2010. That fire forced a 92 – year old woman to escape the building by crawling out on a roof. Schneider denied any involvement in the blaze... however there was surveillance video of her car near the scene. She lived in the building at one time, but was evicted. Schneider is now in the Luzerne County Jail awaiting sentencing in June.
Ex Cop Sentenced
A former Berwick police officer has been sentenced to at least a month in the Columbia County Prison. 30 – year old Chris Wilson will also be on probation and pay a fine... for stealing more than 800 packets of heroine from the police department. The Press – Enterprise is reporting in Thursday's edition... Wilson joined the force back in 2005... but his job came to an end the middle of last year. Wilson admitted he had a problem with heroine addiction for at least a sixth month period. Columbia County Judge Gary Norton also ordered Wilson to attend either Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous meetings.
Now that last weekend's Block Party is becoming a distant memory.... many of us are looking forward to this year's next special event. The annual Renaissance Jamboree is Saturday up and down Main Street in Bloomsburg. Appearing on the Wednesday edition of the WHLM Morning Buzz... Oren Helbok of the Moose Exchange says there's plenty of things to see and do due to crafters and non – profit groups. The event also includes plenty of entertainment spread out over four stages up and down Main Street... including a venue in front of the Columbia County Courthouse. The event begins Saturday morning at 10 O'clock.
Danville Skul Board
The Danville Area School Board gets to bare it's soul next Thursday when they gather to face the public. School Board President Allan Schappert says is a way to have open dialogue with taxpayers... and to get some suggestions. The “Ask your School Board Night...” sponsored by the League of Voters gets underway next Thursday at 7 O'clock at the Danville Borough Ballroom on Mill Street.
Calling it quite the feat, the state Auditor General Eugene DePasquale says a backlog of audits have been cleared. DePasquale says a backlog of 1,500 audits has been taken care of since he took office earlier this year. The A-G's office produces about four thousand audit reports per year. And DePasquale says he has also reduced his department's fleet of cars by more than 50 since January.
Loyalsock State Forest
Environmental advocates are urging Governor Corbett to keep natural gas drillers out of the Loyalsock State forest North of Williamsport. Jeff Schmidt with the Sierra Club of Pennsylvania says the state has control over the surface access of sensitive land in the state forests... and the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources is not property exercising that authority. Meantime... a DCNR spokesperson says the situation is more complicated that some may suggest.
An 87 – year old Hazleton woman had her wheelchair stolen off her daughter's front porch Wednesday afternoon. Anna Rose Matweecha of Wyoming Street used the wheelchair to sit in the sunshine and get around. Hazleton police say if you have information about the theft... give them a call.
The state attorney general's office is taking a look at the paperwork surrounding the proposed merger between Hazleton General Hospital and the Lehigh Valley Health Network. Talks have been on – going for some time... and the merger would bring new ideas and procedures to Hazleton General. It's not known when the Attorney General's office will give it's okay... but it could take anywhere from six months to a year.
Point Twp Fire
Investigators say they believe a Wednesday morning fire in a Point Township summer home began in a bedroom and spread. The fire extensively damaged the home along Route 11 south of Danville. Firemen were called out at midday to squelch the flames. No one was at home when the flames broke out... but authorities say at least a dozen cats died in the smokey fire.
Sunbury Water Treatment Plant
Sunbury’s 53-year old water treatment plant will be totally upgraded as a result of funding approved this week by PENNVEST. That word from state Senator John R. Gordner of Berwick... and state Representative Lynda Schlegel Culver of Sunbury. In essence... the PENNVEST board approved a $3 million low cost loan for the Sunbury Municipal Authority. The money to be used for new treatment units that meet current environmental standards... as well as associated mechanical equipment.
New License Plates
Members and veterans of the United States Armed Forces who have served with a U.S. Military Airborne Unit or as a World War II Merchant Mariner can now display their service with new license plates available from PennDOT. Veterans and military personnel interested in these new plates can visit PennDOT’s Driver and Vehicle Services website.
The Bloomsburg University baseball team has now won 6 straight games. Wednesday, the Huskies swept a home doubleheader from IUP, winning the first game 11-5 and the nightcap 3-0.
In high school baseball yesterday.... Berwick downed Holy Redeemer 3 – 1... it was Montgomery over Columbia Montour Vo Tech 5 to nothing... and Northwest blanked Benton 15 – nothing.
In girls softball... Berwick just getting by Hazleton 6 – 5... and Columbia Montour Vo - Tech defeated Sullivan County 15 to 4.
In the third game of their home series against Pittsburgh Wednesday night... the Pirates downing the Philadelphia Phillies 5 to 3. The series concludes Thursday with a matinee game that begins at 1:05. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pregame show at 12:30.
In other games Wednesday night... The Tampa Bay Rays defeated the the New York Yankees 3 to nothing... and the New York Mets down the Los Angeles Dodgers 7 to 3.
In the NBA playoffs last night... it was Indiana over Atlanta 113 to 98.... Oklahoma City got by Houston 105 to 102... and San Antonio got the best of the Los Angeles Lakers 102 – 91.
900 Block Demolition
What was a block filled with homes along the 900 block of West Main Street in Bloomsburg... is nothing more than memories. It's taken the Hazleton – based contracting crew two weeks to knock down the ten houses bought out by the town following the floods of 2011. Bloomsburg town administrator Bill Lowthert says the project is in it's final phase with foundations being filled in with dirt. And Lowthert says once the seed is planted and the grass takes hold... the area could be used for recreational activities... but no permanent structures will be built that could impede future flood water.
Second Amendment Rally
Pennsylvania's gun rights activists are taking a stand against any new restrictions from the federal government. They held a rally Tuesday at the state capitol in Harrisburg. A few hundred gun rights activists rallied to defend their Second Amendment rights to keep and bear arms. They favor of state legislation that would bar the enforcement of any new federal gun control laws in Pennsylvania. That legislation has been referred to the House Judiciary Committee.
Berwick Area United Way
The Berwick Area United Way is soliciting groups to take part in next month's Week of Caring... beginning May 13th. In essence... director Ginny Crake is looking for volunteer groups to help spiff up Berwick... especially parks and non – profit agencies such as the Women's Center... Beyond Violence... the Berwick Red Cross chapter.... the Salvation Army and Camp Louise. Volunteer groups interested should register with the Berwick Area United Way on or before May 7th.
The costs of owning and operating a vehicle have gone up in the last year according to an annual report from the Triple – A. WHLM's Cathy Clark is reporting it's costing nearly two percent more to own and operate the average vehicle in the U S according to the Triple – A annual "Your Driving Costs" study. But it was not the increase in the price at the pump that saw the biggest jump. Maintenance costs are up more than 11% over last year. The Triple – A says when buying a new car, consider not only fuel efficiency but insurance and repair costs for that make and model.
The Keystone Job Corps at Drums... near Hazleton... should be back up to speed soon. A freeze on new student enrollment has ended. The Job Corps provides a training program for economically disadvantage teens. The freeze earlier this year halted student enrollment... and tossed some people out of work.
State Police in Hazleton want to know who sprawled graffiti on garages and a fence in the Green Ridge section of Hazle Township. Specifically the vandalism took place late Sunday night and early Monday morning... and included insults for two specific West Hazleton police officers. If you have information about the vandalism... call state police in Hazleton.
Budget cuts... mandated by the Obama Administration... is taking it's toll on airline travelers. They're being felt at the Wilkes – Barre / Scranton International Airport in Avoca. Furloughs for air traffic controllers kicked in this week. If travelers don't have trouble getting out of AVP.... they're having trouble making their flights at the larger hubs due to delays in the air traffic control system... causing major headaches.
Derry Twp Bridge
A PennDOT crew will begin a bridge replacement project next week in Montour County. Detours will be in place on Diehl Road in Derry Township starting May 1st. An agency spokesman says an existing 23 – foot long bridge over Mud Creek will replace a structure built in 1934. Crews will remove the bridge... then replace it with a pre – cast concrete box culvert. The project will take up to eight weeks to complete.
Two secondary Southern Columbia Area Students are not in class... expelled after they allegedly violating the district's drug and alcohol policy. That... confirmed by superintendent Paul Caputo. The action was taken last week by the school board... after incidents happened within the past month.
Geisinger - Lewisburg
Geisinger Medical Center in Danville is teaming up with Bucknell University to open the Geisinger –Bucknell Autism and Developmental Medicine Center. A grand opening ceremony will be held Thursday at Geisinger – Lewisburg. The facility is being called a national model for implementing guidelines for early diagnosis, medication management and treatment options for children with developmental disorders.
The Bloomsburg University baseball team swept a doubleheader from IUP Tuesday. The Huskies won the first game 6-5 and the nightcap 7-6.
The Bloomsburg University softball team lost a pair of games at Lock Haven. The Huskies lost the first game 2-1 and the nightcap 7-6.
In high school girls softball on Tuesday... Central Columbia downed Warrior Run 3 to 2... Southern Columbia blanked Hughesville 10 to nothing... St. John Neuman defeated Millville 27 – 16.
In major league baseball Tuesday.... the Pittsburgh Pirates blanked the Philadelphia Phillies 2 to nothing. The third game of that series is on tap for Wednesday night. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pre - game show at 6:35. In other games last night... the LA Dodgers downed the New York Mets 7 – 2... The New York Yankees getting by the Tampa Bay Rays 4 – 3.
In the NBA playoffs... It was the Miami Heat over the Milwaukee Bucks 98 – 86... The New York Knicks defeating the Boston Celtics 87 – 71... and the Golden State Warriors blowing out Denver 131 – 117.
Block Partly Folo
Bloomsburg Mayor Dan Knorr said police took appropriate action when they clashed with student party – goers during Saturday's Block Party on Fetterman Avenue. That's the area where police and students clashed with bottles and rocks being thrown at an assault vehicle used to clear the area when the kids tried to block access. No one was injured in the confrontation... but the so – called “Bearcat” assault vehicle sustained minor damage to windows... tires and body.
Now that block party is behind us..... many are looking forward to this weekend's special event in Bloomsburg. Renaissance Jamboree kicks off Saturday morning... a street party filled with crafters... artisans and non – profit groups. Downtown Bloomsburg, Incorporated manager Adrienne Mael says showcasing Main Street is important. The event begins at 10 O'clock Saturday morning... and although no parking will be allowed on Main Street... there is plenty of off – street parking close to the festival.
The Bloomsburg Town Council has decided to deny the transfer of a liquor license from the Berwick area to a local businesswoman. The action happened Monday night when the lawmakers met at town hall. Marlene Butters has a ten percent stake in the Capitol Restaurant in Bloomsburg... but wants to open her own shop in a store front now occupied by Marley's Brewery and Grille at 18 West Main Street. But Councilman Fred Trump set the wheels in motion to deny Ms. Butters the transfer citing the number of licenses already in town... and public safety concerns. The final vote was 4 to 3 to deny the license. Within the next few months... Marley's is expected to move into the former Bennigan's restaurant on Route 11 in Scott Township.
Take Back Day
This Saturday is designated “National Prescription Drug Take – Back Day...” a day you clean out your medicine cabinet... and bring unwanted or unneeded drugs to your local police department. On Columbia County's Southside.... the Locust Township Police Department is taking part of the programing. Chief Allan Breach says it's pretty simple for folks to participate. Chief Breach says he'll have an extra officer on duty to meet the people and take their old prescription drugs. They will eventually be turned over to drug enforcement agents for disposal.
The cause of that early Sunday morning fire in the 500 – block of McKinley Street in Hazleton remains undetermined. The flames spread to four other homes.... making 16 people homeless. Now... the city says it hopes to have the burned out property demolished by the end of the week. Neighbor's believe that won't happen... but police chief Frank DeAndrea... who is also the code enforcement officer... says estimates are being received as to the cost of demolition.
RealtyTrac says northeastern PA's decline in foreclosure activity made a sharp reversal the first quarter of the year.... rocketing upwards. The company is a national real estate monitor. Repossessions... mortgage default notices... as well as auction notices in the Scranton / Wilkes – Barre / Hazleton metro area soared by 55% during the first quarter... compared to the same period in 2012.
A Pottsville man was taken into custody Sunday afternoon... after he was spotted on the roof of a building with a weapon in his hand. Our media partner Newswatch 16 is reporting 40 – year old Anthony Iacovetti was taken into custody by Pottsville police when found on a roof of a building around Third and Norwegian Streets. It was determined he was carrying a pellet gun. Police say charges are pending.
The average price of a gallon of gas continues to drop... down 7 cents from a week ago... and 23 – cents over the last month. The Triple – A Fuel Gauge report shows that across northeastern Pennsylvania... a gallon of self – serve, unleaded regular is averaging $3.43 a gallon... down a penny from the weekend... and seven cents from a week ago. During the past month the average price has dropped 23 cents a gallon. It's all due to the complete change over to a summer blend of gas... and plummeting crude oil prices.
Feral Cat Program
The borough of Conyngham is seeking donations to continue it's feral cat program. Last summer... a little more than two dozen cats were trapped neutered or spayed and released back into the community. The program was a success... and those involved want to make sure it continues. Donations can be dropped off at the borough building in the 200 block of Main Street.
Black Fly Program
The Luzerne County Council is expected to take up the issue of joining the State's black – fly program. Those black flies are pesky gnats which hang around us during the summer months. County Manager Robert Lawton says Luzerne could save up to $70,000 to opt out, but several council members say they need to be included in the eradication program. The discussion is expected to surface during Tuesday's Council meeting in Wilkes – Barre.
A real strength of the Bloomsburg University football team this fall should be the offensive line which has four starters returning. Two of those returners- guard Brian Clark and tackle Matt Feiler are on the radar of NFL teams. Huskies' offensive coordinator Bryan McBryan says Feiler is 6 – foot, 7 – inches tall and weighs 315 pounds. Tuesday night the Huskies have the 10th of their allotted 15 spring practices.
After being swept by East Stroudsburg in a home doubleheader on Sunday, the Bloomsburg University baseball team returned the favor yesterday sweeping two games at East Stroudsburg 5-2 and 10-7.
High School Baseball
In high school baseball on Monday... Dallas gets by Berwick 10 to 9.... Bucktail downs Benton 5 – 2... It was Central Columbia over Shikellamy 6 – 5... Loyalsock defeats Danville 2 – 1 and: Southern Columbia outscores Selinsgrove 7 – 5.
In the majors Monday night... the Philadelphia Phillies defeated the Pittsburgh Pirates 3 – 2. The second game of that four game series will be played Tuesday night. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pregame show at 6:35.
Some good memories made during Block Party in Bloomsburg Saturday... other memories not so good as numerous arrests were made by police. The biggest category... 29 busted for underage drinking. The major problem area... according to Police Chief Leo Sokoloski... was along Fetterman Avenue... just off Lightstreet Road. That's when students and young people clashed with police who entered the area using the “Bearcat...” a rapid assault vehicle. The $362,000 dollar unit... mounted on a Ford F-650 chassis... is funded by Homeland Security dollars.
Sudents Party Hardy
Block Party's ground zero appeared to be on Fetterman Avenue... just off Lightstreet Road. One college – age student from Maryland said the scene was... as he described.... nuts.... telling us about the “Bearcat” entering Fetterman Avenue... and getting tear gassed. Hundreds... if not thousands of student converged on Block Party's hot spots... such as Iron and East Streets... as well as Lightstreet Road.
White Hall Twp. Fire
Investigators say a space heater was the cause of a fire which destroyed a double – wide home over the weekend... leaving seven people homeless. The blaze took place on in White Hall Township on Pleasant View Road... north of Lewisburg... Saturday night. All seven in the home escaped the flames.
A state fire marshal is being called in to determine what started a blaze in a condemned double block home in the 5 – hundred block of McKinley Street that went up in flames early Sunday morning. The flames spread to four other homes before being extinguished. The structure is owned by an absentee landlord... and was divided into five apartments. But for the past decade the owners... past tenants and contractors... as well as Hazleton code enforcement have been at odds as to what to do with the building.
If you plan to vote in next month's primary election... as well as the general election in November... Monday is the last day to sign up. The registration deadline is at the close of business... and Columbia County Chief Registrar Matt Rapasky says it's a pretty simple procedure. Mr. Repasky says if you stop in at the Courthouse Annex in Bloomsburg to register... you should have your voter registration card by the end of the week. This year's primary is May 21st.
Road to Recovery
There is a program run by the American Cancer Society... that needs a little help these days. It's the society's “Road to Recovery” program and is seeking volunteer drivers to take cancer patients to their hospital or doctor appointments so says says the society's Dawn Spuesens. Ms. Spuesens says drivers are needed in Columbia and Montour Counties due to the close proximity to the Geisinger Medical Center. For more information or to volunteer give the society a call.
Feral Cat Program
The borough of Conyngham is seeking donations to continue it's feral cat program. Last summer... a little more than two dozen cats were trapped neutered or spayed and released back into the community. The program was a success... and those involved want to make sure it continues. Donations can be dropped off at the borough building in the 200 block of Main Street.
Black Fly Program
The Luzerne County Council is expected to take up the issue of joining the State's black – fly program. Those black flies are those pesky gnats which hang around us during the summer months. County Manager Robert Lawton says Luzerne could save up to $70,000 to opt out, but several council members say they need to be included in the eradication program. The discussion is expected to surface during Tuesday's Council meeting in Wilkes – Barre.
The Bloomsburg University baseball team lost a home doubleheader to East Stroudsburg Sunday afternoon. The Huskies lost the first game 3 to 1 and the nightcap 5 to 3. The teams will meet again in another doubleheader Monday afternoon at East Stroudsburg.
In the final game of a four game series Sunday night... the Philadelphia Phillies downed the St. Louis Cardinals 7 to 3. Monday night the Phils are at home against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pregame show at 6:35. On Sunday... the Pirates defeated the Atlanta Braves 4-2. In other games Sunday, the Mets shut out the Nationals 2-0 and the Yankees lost to Toronto 8-4.
The NBA playoffs began over the weekend. In series openers Sunday... Indiana downed Atlanta 107 – 90... it was San Antonio over the Los Angeles Lakers 91 – 79... Miami defeated Milwaukee 110 to 87... and it was Oklahoma City over Houston 120 to 91.
This weekend the Columbia Montour Visitors Bureau is hosting their 2nd annual Artist Studio Tour from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM today. Drive through the spring landscape of Columbia and Montour Counties while stopping off to visit local artist's studios. Get a map and information at itourcolumbiamontour.com.
The Potts Grove Fire Company serves up their monthly all you can eat breakfast buffet and brunch today from 7:00 AM to 1:00 PM.
The Defender Fire Company of Berwick is hosting a chicken and waffle dinner on this afternoon from 2:00 to 7:00 PM. The fire company is at the corner of Pine and 6th Streets in Berwick.
The Millville Maniacs Youth Baseball Tournament Team are hosing a “Thirty-One” Bingo today at the Columbia Mall. Doors open at noon and lunch will be served. It's 20 games for $20.00. Proceeds benefit their trip to a tournament this June.
The Danville Track Boosters are sponsoring a two-man scramble golf tournament at the Links today. The tournament starts at 9:00 AM and sign ups begin at 8:00 AM.
The Jubilation Ringers present their 2013 handbell concert today at 4:00 PM at St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Bloomsburg. Tickets are $10.00 at the door.
Black Creek United Methodist Church is hosting a rummage sale today 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM it's dollar a bag day.
This weekend the Columbia Montour Visitors Bureau is hosting their 2nd annual Artist Studio Tour from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM today and tomorrow. Drive through the spring landscape of Columbia and Montour Counties while stopping off to visit local artist's studios. Get a map and information at itourcolumbiamontour.com.
Today is the annual Metrocast Giving Back 5K Run/Walk...the race starts and finishes at the Summerhill Fire Company.
Mt. Zion United Methodist Church is hosting a breakfast for a donation from 7:00 AM to 9:30 AM today to benefit Relay for Life and Camp Victory. The church is located in Catawissa.
The Washingtonville Volunteer Fire Company is hosting a breakfast buffet today They're serving all you can eat eggs, bacon, pancakes, french toast, potatoes and lots more. Admission is $7.00 for you and $4.00 for children ages 6 to 12.
The Lightstreet Hotel is hosting a guest bartender night today with the Mertz Family and Friends to benefit Judson M Shepherd from 7:00 to 9:00 PM.
The Free Saturday trains program will be open as usual from 10:00 AM to Noon at Christ Memorial Episcopal Church in Danville.
Shiloh Bible Church presents the Whery Family in concert today at 7:00 PM.
Father's Hope is hosting their kickoff fundraiser concert today at Revival Tabernacle in Watsontown starting at 7:00 PM. The concert is designed to be a fun evening of fellowship for the entire family and will feature local residents in their teens and 20s sharing their musical talents.
The Columbia County Historical and Genealogical Society are hosting a free program tonight called “Encouraging a New Generation of History Lovers” at Ridge Street United Methodist Church at 7:30 PM.
The Potts Grove Fire Company serves up their monthly all you can eat breakfast buffet and brunch tomorrow from 7:00 AM to 1:00 PM.
The Defender Fire Company of Berwick is hosting a chicken and waffle dinner on tomorrow afternoon from 2:00 to 7:00 PM. The fire company is at the corner of Pine and 6th Streets in Berwick.
The Millville Maniacs Youth Baseball Tournament Team are hosing a “Thirty-One” Bingo tomorrow at the Columbia Mall. Doors open at noon and lunch will be served. It's 20 games for $20.00. Proceeds benefit their trip to a tournament this June.
The Danville Track Boosters are sponsoring a two-man scramble golf tournament at the Links tomorrow. The tournament starts at 9:00 AM and sign ups begin at 8:00 AM.
The Jubilation Ringers present their 2013 handbell concert tomorrow at 4:00 PM at St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Bloomsburg. Tickets are $10.00 at the door.
Boston Bombing Suspect Dead
One of two suspects in the Boston Marathon bombing is dead and a massive manhunt is under way for another, authorities said early Friday. Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis tweeted that the second at large is the one seen in the white hat in images released by the FBI Thursday of the Boston Marathon suspects. Davis says he is "armed and dangerous." Massachusetts State Police Superintendent Timothy Alben told reporters the situation is "grave." Residents of Watertown, a Boston suburb, have been advised to keep their doors locked and not let anyone in. The Boston Police Department warned residents to "stay home," and barred any vehicles from entering or leaving Watertown. Public transit in the area has been suspended. President Obama was briefed on the situation overnight, according to a White House official. The Middlesex district attorney said the two men are suspected of killing a Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer on campus late Thursday, then stealing a car at gunpoint and later releasing its driver unharmed. Hours earlier, police had released photos of the marathon bombing suspects and asked for the public's help finding them. Authorities say the suspects threw explosives from the car as police followed it into Watertown. The suspects and police exchanged gunfire, and one of the suspects was critically injured and later died while the other escaped. CBS News has learned the dead suspect had multiple gunshot wounds."We believe this to be a terrorist," Boston police Commissioner Ed Davis said. "We believe this to be a man who came here to kill people." The FBI said it is working with local authorities to determine what happened. The MIT shooting on the Cambridge campus Thursday night was followed gunfire and explosions in Watertown, about 10 miles west of Boston. The MIT officer had been responding to report of a disturbance Thursday night when he was shot multiple times, according to a statement from the Middlesex district attorney's office and Cambridge police. It said there were no other victims. In Watertown, multiple gunshots and explosions were heard at about 1 a.m. Friday. Dozens of police officers and FBI agents were in the neighborhood and a helicopter circled overhead.
Flood Wall Meeting
A lot of questions... but really no answers from SEDA – COG Thursday night during an informational meeting dealing with the two flood walls to be built around Autoneum North America and Windsor Foods on Bloomsburg's west side. Of primary importance for residents... how much higher will the water be in neighborhoods surrounding the plants. SEDA – COG's Bill Seigel quoted findings from the study Kawneer conducted prior to the construction of their flood wall near the airport... showing that water in the area will increase an estimated three – tenths of an inch. Meantime, bids for engineering work on the two projects will be opened next week at SEDA – COG's Lewisburg headquarters.... with construction to get underway in about a year.
What started as a fund raiser in the early 90's has taken on a life of it's own. Bloomsburg is expected to be inundated by thousands of college and university aged students starting Friday... running into Sunday morning for the 2013 edition of Block Party. The event is not sanctioned by the university... and there will be plenty of police presence on hand to make sure the event doesn't get out of control. Town Councilman and businessman Eric Bower says he's prepared... as a lawmaker and a security expert. Bower's business has dozens of cameras up and down Main Street... and he's helped the police department in the past identify suspects which have led to arrests. Block party participants are usually found at gatherings along East and Iron Streets... as well as Lightstreet Road.
We're approaching the second full weekend of trout fishing in Columbia and surrounding counties. Streams, such as Fishing Creek near the Iron Bridge off Route 42 near Hoffman Park, have been restocked with 500 additional trout this week... and that's where WHLM News caught up with Rob Wenrich of Berwick. Rob says dropping a line in the water is well worth it. Each year... the PA Fish and Game Commission gives the Fishing Creek Sportsman Association 25,000 trout to raise and distribute in Columbia County waterways accessible to the public.
A bomb threat written on the wall of the boy's restroom... cleared out the Crestwood High School in Wright Township north of Hazleton yesterday afternoon. Police conducting a search of the building came up empty handed. Superintendent Dave McLaughlin – Smith says once the threat was found... the district followed protocol and cleared the building for the day.
Investigators say a child playing with either matches or a lighter was the cause of a fire which substantially damaged a half – double house in Hazleton this week. The home is in the 500 block of Peace Street. Two families were in the building when the blaze began... with everyone getting out safely.
That fire at a south Church Street business in Hazleton has been ruled an accident. The blaze extensively damaged Holeshot Cycle Wednesday afternoon... and investigators say it started in a battery charger or the motorcycle it was attached to. Up to 40 motorcycles... dirt bikes and ATV's were destroyed. The flames were fueled by tires... as well as grease and other lubricants. No one was injured in Wednesday's fire in Hazleton.
Rest Area to be Closed
Using the westbound lane of Interstate 80 in the near future.... PennDOT says the Columbia County Roadside rest comfort and vending facilities near Mifflinville will be closed starting Monday. The area will be shuttered for two weeks as a sewer line is replace. Also... the rest area is targeted for a major reconstruction project.
When the Bloomsburg University football team concluded spring drills a year ago, the Huskies weren't sure who would be their starting quarterback. Redshirt freshman Tim Kelly won the job in the fall and went on to throw 22 touchdown passes in helping the Huskies to a record of 10 and 2. Quarterbacks' coach Jack Lydic praises Kelly for more than just his physical attributes. The Huskies are halfway through their spring drills which will conclude with the annual Maroon & Gold game on Friday night, May 3rd.
In high school baseball Thursday... Tunkhannock downed Berwick 7 – 6.... and Bloomsburg defeated Millville 4 – 1...
In girls' softball Thursday... It was Bloomsburg over Saint John Neuman 16 – 1... Danville outlasted Selinsgrove 13 – 1... and Benton defeated Sullivan County 16 – 2.
MLB / Phillies
The Phillies started an 8 game home stand last night with the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cards outlasting the Phils 4 to 3. You can hear Friday night's game against the Cardinals on the WHLM Stations starting with the pregame show at 6:30.
NBA / 76er's
Doug Collins has resigned after three seasons as head coach of The Philadelphia 76ers.
In the NHL Thursday night... the New Jersey Devils defeated the Philadelphia Flyers 3 to nothing.
Flood Wall Meeting
A lot of questions... but really no concrete answers from SEDA – COG Thursday night during an informational meeting dealing with the two flood walls to be built around Autoneum North America and Windsor Foods on Bloomsburg's west side. Of primary importance for residents... how much higher will the water be in neighborhoods surround the plants. SEDA – COG's Bill Seigel quoted findings from the study Kawneer conducted prior to the construction of their flood wall near the airport... showing that water in the area will increase an estimated three – tenths of an inch. Meantime, bids for engineering work on the two projects will be opened next week at SEDA – COG's Lewisburg headquarters.... with construction to get underway in about a year.
What started as a fund raiser in the early 90's has taken on a life of it's own. Bloomsburg is expected to be inundated by thousands of college and university aged students starting Friday... running into Sunday morning for the 2013 edition of Block Party. The event is not sanctioned by the university... and there will be plenty of police presence on hand to make sure the event doesn't get out of control.
Town Councilman and businessman Eric Bower says he's prepared... as a lawmaker and a security expert. Bower's business has dozens of cameras up and down Main Street... and he's helped the police department in the past identify suspects which have led to arrests. Block party participants are usually found at gathering along East and Iron Streets... as well as Lightstreet Road.
We're approaching the second full weekend of trout fishing in Columbia and surrounding counties. Streams, such as Fishing Creek near the Iron Bridge off Route 42 near Hoffman Park, have been restocked with 500 additional trout this week... and that's where WHLM News caught up with Rob Wenrich of Berwick. Rob says dropping a line in the water is well worth it. Each year... the PA Fish and Game Commission gives the Fishing Creek Sportsman Association 25,000 trout to raise and distribute in Columbia County waterways accessible to the public.
Berwick Road Construction
Work began Wednesday on the re-construction of West Front Street in Berwick. Barletta Construction of Hazleton using a back hoe to take chunks of blacktop from the passing lane and placing the old pavement in waiting dump trucks to be hauled away. Berwick business owner Arden Oliver watched the action from in front of his store... telling WHLM News Barletta has done a pretty good job, but the utility companies are questionable. Barletta Construction hopes to have both travel lanes of West Front... between Dunkin' Donuts and Market Street pretty much wrapped up in time for the Celebrate Berwick Festival on May 11th.
Drug Take Back
Mark your calendar... and clear out your medicine cabinet... as “National Prescription Drug Take Back Day” is quickly approaching. Pennsylvania State trooper Adam Reed says selected barracks are participating in the April 27th event. The most recent event took place last Septembers... with an estimated 244 tons of prescriptions taken off the street nationwide.
There's a new call to abolish the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission. More than a dozen state lawmakers came out in support of House Bill 1197, which would abolish the Turnpike Commission and transfer it's duties to PennDOT under a new bureau of toll administration and deputy secretary. The Senators citing the recent grand jury indictments charging pay to play corruption in the turnpike's former administration.
State Police are investigating allegations that the police chief in Hartleton... in Union County... pressured speeders who received traffic citations to either pay the tickets or donate to the community playground. Donald Zerbe has been the police chief there for thirty years. He has his supporters in several borough council members. Already investigators have obtained a search warrant to go through the department's office in Zerbe's home.
Alleged Sexual Assault
A Luzerne County man is out of a job at a group home in Wilkes - Barre... and in jail after he was charged with allegedly sexually assaulting a 14 – year old girl in his care. Authorities say 23 – year old Lee Snyder took the teen to his Hanover Township apartment in March where the assault allegedly occurred. Police are basing their charges on a detailed journal the girl kept... as well as text messages.
Snyder is now in jail unable to post $50,000 bail.
There is one less person in Luzerne County government. County Manager Robert Lawton says Acting county Chief Public Defender... Al Flora, Jr.... has been fired. County Council members found that out in an e-mail sent to them by Lawton. No reason given for the firing of the Chief Public Defender.
Motorcycle Shop Fire
A state fire marshal is expected to be at a Hazleton motorcycle shop Thursday to try and figure out what started a blaze at mid - afternoon Wednesday. The fire broke out at Holeshot Cycle and Accessories... sending clouds of billowing black smoke in to the air. Mutual aid was requested. The building housing motorcycles... tires... plus oil and grease. No one was injured in the Wednesday afternoon fire in Hazleton.
Hazleton House Fire
A Hazleton apartment was substantially damaged by fire Wednesday morning. Firemen were called to a double block home in the 500 block of Peace Street. Two families were in the building when the blaze began... with everyone getting out safely. No word at to what caused that fire on Peace Street in Hazleton.
A man who robbed a Hazleton bank in September of 2011 will spend the next five years in prison. Kevin Parks was handed the sentence for the robbery of the First National Community Bank on West Broad Street. Following the stick up... Parks took a cab to Scranton where he was arrested for public intoxication.
The Anthracite Outdoor Adventure Area has announced that nearly 3 miles of new trails are now ready for the upcoming riding season in Northumberland County. Also... nearly 4 acres of land has been cleared for a trail head construction project. The area will be used for the first Jeep Jamboree USA event being held in early June.
With the annual block party this weekend in Bloomsburg... aimed at university and college age students... Police Chief Leo Sokoloski is gearing up for any eventually. He's enlisted help from other agencies stretching from the Pocono's to central Pennsylvania. Although numbers weren't revealed... Chief Sokoloski says he's prepared. Party goers are expected to concentrate their activities up and down East Main Street... plus frat houses and student housing along East Street and Lightstreet Road. The weather could play a part in the number of people in town with clouds and a 30 – percent chance of showers.
NRA / Sportsman Show
The debate over gun control intimately canceled Harrisburg's big outdoors show this winter... but now there's a new promoter... the National Rifle Association. The NRA winning the rights to promote next year's show... with organizers vowing to put all legal firearms on display.... a move that ultimately canceled the January event. The NRA topped 16 other would – be promoters... and plans to elevate the show to a national scale.
The trout season opened across the region last weekend... and already places like Fishing Creek are being restocked. It's all due to the efforts of the Fishing Creek Sportsman Club... so says the organization's Frank Bennett. The Pennsylvania Fish and Game Commission giving the club 25,000 hatchlings to nurture... raise and distribute to creeks in the area with public access. An estimated 500 trout were restocked in Fishing Creek this week... making anglers pretty happy as they dropped their lines at Hoffman Park on Route 42 near the Iron Bridge.
One of the three candidates seeking the seat of Mayor of Bloomsburg held a meet and greet for supporters Tuesday night. Current Town Councilman Eric Bower is facing two other candidates in the May Democratic primary. Bower says it's important to meet constituents who may be casting a ballot. Bower faces council vice – chair Diane Levan... as well as political newcomer Sandy Davis in the May 21st primary.
Hazleton Salvation Army
The Salvation Army in Hazleton says it wants to raise an estimated $100,000 to repair their kitchen. The walls... some carpeting... floors and bathrooms were damaged when water overflowed at the community center in the 300 block of West Broad Street. The kitchen serves an estimated 100 free lunches during weekdays at the facility.
Testimony in the arson trial of a Berwick woman continues Wednesday in the Luzerne County Court in Wilkes – Barre. 44 – year old Gail Schneider is accused of torching an apartment building on Lantern Lane in Conyngham in September of 2010. Fire Chief Rich Bognar testified Tuesday it was one of the worst fires he's fought in nearly three decades of being in the fire service. Schneider is a former tenant of the building... kicked out a year prior to the blaze.
A Hazleton woman is in custody after police say she allegedly stabbed her husband. Candice Lindenmuth allegedly stabbed her husband at their home in the 600 block of W. 20th Street Tuesday morning. Lindenmuth has been charged with assault and harassment.
Northumberland County authorities have yet to release the name of a man they arrested in connection with the theft of copper pipes worth several hundred dollars. The theft happened over the weekend behind a store on Edison Avenue in Sunbury. Surveillance video show the man taking the pipes... then making his getaway by a car driven by a second person.
The Bloomsburg University baseball team was scheduled to play a doubleheader Tuesday afternoon at IUP. Those games were postponed. No makeup date has been announced.
The Bloomsburg University women's softball team plays Goldy Beacom Wednesday afternoon in a doubleheader at Hutchinson Field. The first game starts at 2:30.
Girls HS Softball
In girls high school softball Tuesday... Central Columbia downed South Williamsport 15 to 3.... and Sullivan County defeated Millville 21 – 2.
There is a good match - up in high school baseball Wednesday afternoon. Central Columbia with a 4 and 2 record plays at Southern Columbia which has a record of 5 and 1.
In major league baseball Tuesday night... rain got the best of the Philadelphia Phillies and the Cincinnati Reds.... with the game suspended in the bottom of the 9th inning... with the score tied nothing to nothing. The game is expected to resume Wednesday. The third and final game of that series will played Wednesday night. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pregame show at 6:35.
Other MLB Games
In other games Tuesday night... the New York Yankees getting by the Arizona Diamondbacks 4 to 2. In the first game of a day-night doubleheader... the Colorado Rockies defeated the New York Mets 8 to 4... and in the second game... the Rockies downed the Mets 9 to 8. The game between the Saint Louis Cardinals and the Pittsburgh Pirates was postponed due to rain.
The words “Everyone is okay....” never sounded so good. That from a runner from Berwick who took part in Monday's tragedy- marred Boston Marathon. Authorities say three people are dead and an estimated 140 injured following two explosions yesterday at the finish line. Doug Alter telling WHLM News from Boston he came across the line about 20 minutes before the explosion took place. To him, everything looked normal... with folks lining the finish line area three to four people deep. Meantime, the woman who co-ordinates the annual “Run for the Diamonds” marathon in Berwick on Thanksgiving Day says the events of yesterday at the finish of the Boston Marathon is unbelievable. Margaret Livsey says she doesn't believe a tragedy such as happened in Boston could happen at the Berwick event. Bill Bull of Berwick took part in the 5K event yesterday in Boston and was on his way home when hearing the news. Bull said he doesn't believe the bombings will change the way running events are held.
Flood Wall Meeting
A $30 – million dollar flood wall project for two of Bloomsburg's biggest employers goes under the microscope Thursday night. Lewisburg – based SEDA – COG is holding the meeting at the Bloomsburg Fire Hall in order to explain what the flood walls around Autoneum and Windsor Foods means to people living on the west end of Bloomsburg... so says SEDA – COG's Bill Seigel. The project includes federal and state monies... as well as that chipped in by the two companies. It's designed to save an estimated 900 jobs. Thursday's meeting begins at 7 O'clock at the fire hall in the 900 block of Market Street.
The next stage production for the Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble is described as somewhat sweet... but somewhat heavy.... but it is a comedy. “Superior Donuts” makes it's debut on the stage of the Alvina Krause Theatre May 2nd... and deals with a doughnut shop in present day Chicago with a cross – section of characters... so says the BTE's Richie Cannaday. “Superior Donuts” runs through May 19th at the Alvina Krause Theatre on Center Street in Bloomsburg.
Selinsgrove Home Invasion
Police in Selinsgrove are containing their investigation into a home invasion of an off – campus apartment with involving a dozen Susquehanna University students. Investigators say two men... armed with a shotgun and a hand gun broke into an apartment early Saturday morning in the 100 block of Market Street... making off with wallets and cellphones. One women was injured and taken to a Sunbury hospital... where she was treated and released. Police say they're looking for two black males between the ages of 18 and 28.
Work began Monday on the dismantling of a 130 foot tall smokestack in Hazleton Heights area of the city. City officials condemned the structure at the start of the weekend... fearing the smokestack would come down... and that forced the closures of near – by businesses. A two man crew... on a crane... began taking down the structure after the New Jersey owners of the property secured the property permits. The work will continue Tuesday.
A Hazleton man who was beaten and left for dead in early March has had a medical setback. The father of 33 – year old Andrew Goryl said doctors at an Allentown hospital preformed emergency surgery after fluid built up on his brain... and the discovery of blood clots. Goryl was found on West 5th Street... near Locust... unconscious and unable to talk. Thus far no one is in custody.
The price of unleaded, self – serve regular gasoline continues to drop across all of northeastern Pennsylvania... including in Columbia and Montour Counties. The latest Triple A Fuel Gauge report shows we're paying an average of $3.50 a gallon... higher at some locations... less at others.
That's down a penny from the weekend... and off six cents for the week. Overall... unleaded regular has dropped an average of 17 cents a gallon during the past month.
In WHLM Sports
In high school baseball Monday... Berwick defeated Hazleton 3 – 1... Central Columbia just getting by Muncy 9 to 8... Columbia Montour Vo Tech downed Benton 9 – 5.... and it was Southern Columbia over Shamokin 13 to 12...
In girls' softball Monday afternoon... It was Berwick over Wyoming Area 10 – 3... and Benton downed Columbia Montour Vo Tech 7 – 2...
In the first of a three game series Monday night in Cincinnati... the Red defeated the Philadelphia Phillies 4 to 2. Game two of the Phillies and the Reds is Tuesday night. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pregame show at 6:35.
In other games Monday night... the St. Louis Cardinals downed the Pittsburgh Pirates 10 to 6.... and the game between the New York Mets and the Colorado Rockies in Denver... postponed due to snow.
In the NBA Monday night... the Detroit Pistons defeated the Philadelphia 76ers 109 – 101..
In the NHL... the Philadelphia Flyers got by Montreal 7 to 3.
Explosion Rips Finish of Boston Marathon
The words “Everyone is okay....” never sounded so good. That phrase from a runner from Berwick who took part in Monday's tragedy- marred Boston Marathon. Authorities say at least two people are dead and more than 100 injured following two explosions Tuesday afternoon at the finish line. Doug Alter telling WHLM News from Boston he came across the line about 20 minutes before the explosion took place saying it looked like the finish to any other Boston Marathon. Boston Police now say the explosions were bombs that may have been planted in trash cans.
Meantime, the woman who co-ordinates the annual “Run for the Diamonds” marathon in Berwick on Thanksgiving Day says the events of Monday at the finish of the Boston Marathon is unbelievable. Two bombs went off near the finish line killing two... and injuring at least 100 others. Margaret Livsey watched events unfold on her television. Ms. Livsey telling us that she doubts a tragedy such as happened in Boston could happen at the Berwick event. Boston police say initial reports show the explosive devices were hidden in trash cans and went off as the bulk of the runners came across the finish line.
Operators at the PPL Steam Electric Station in Salem Township... north of Berwick.. shut down the Unit 2 reactor over the weekend. A utility spokesman says it's all part of a planned refueling and maintenance outage. While shutdown... maintenance workers will replace an estimated 40% of the uranium fuel and complete a large number of upgrades... also inspecting the units turbines... replacing several pieces of the turbine assembly. Unit 1 continues to operate at full power.
Mt. Carmel Project
It's been thirty years in the making... a project to prevent flooding along Shamokin Creek in Mt. Carmel.... effecting hundreds of homes each time the water spills over it's banks. Ground was broken at the start of the weekend for a 14 – million dollar flood control project... something State Representative Kurt Masser was happy to see it started. Emily Homanick has lived near the creek since the mid 80's... and still has sandbags piled near the front of her home along Water Street. Don Bower, Incorporated of Berwick is the prime contractor on the three year project... which includes 800 feet of pre – cast concrete to keep the stream within it's banks.
Road construction on Front Street in Berwick gets underway this week. Starting Tuesday Barletta Materials of Hazleton will begin excavating the existing roadway on Front Street from an area running from Vine to Market Streets. The company will then place a sub base... and then up to three layers of blacktop. It's all part of a three year project to improve everything from sewer and water lines to roadways. Berwick Borough Manager Robert Hivish says he has mixed feelings about the overall project. The work is expected to be completed by May 6th... with the final layer of asphalt to be placed after the Celebrate Berwick Festival on May 11th.
A woman critically injured in a one – car crash in North Center Township last week has been upgraded to “serious” condition at the Geisinger Medical Center in Danville. The Press – Enterprise is reporting in Monday's edition.. Denise Woodridge is recovering from multiple injuries... including two broken hips sustained in that one – car crash along Fowlersville Road. The driver of the car.. Darrin Bellum is also in Geisinger in “fair” condition. Following the crash he fled the scene, but was captured moments later. He's facing a list of charges once he gets better.
Within the not too distant future... large murals are expected to sprouts on the sides of building in downtown Bloomsburg. The murals will be on Miller Avenue between Main Street and Pine Avenue... as well as Centre Street. Downtown Bloomsburg, Incorporated manager Adrienne Mael telling town council the murals are designed to spiff – up downtown Bloomsburg.
The owners of a 130 foot smokestack in Hazleton Heights hope to be at Hazleton City Hall Monday... acquiring the permits to remove part of the structure so it doesn't endanger the neighborhood. Businesses at Terrace Plaza were closed Friday when the city condemned the property the smokestack sits on... forcing the closure of a grocery store... a nail shop and a Dollar outlet. Once the permits are secured... and fines paid... a large crane is expected on site to remove the top section of the smokestack so the area isn't endangered by a possible collapse.
Judge and Taxes
A Luzerne County Judge and his wife are up to snuff on their back taxes. As we told you last week... Judge Michael Vough owed $10,000 in 2012 school taxes on homes in West Pittston and Harveys Lake. The Judge now says he's paid those taxes... making him square with the county. Most of the problem surfaced... according to the judge... when he spent nearly $200,000 to get his flood – ravaged property back in shape following the September 2011 flood.
Hazleton's CAN DO organization has sold 25 – acres of land in East Union Township portion of the Humboldt Industrial Park... which sits in Schuylkill County. The purchaser... according to a CAN DO spokesman is 62 Green Mountain LLC of Wilkes – Barre. The developer purchasing the property for nearly $381,000. The land is vacant... and it's not known what the developer plans to do with the nearly 26 acres of land.
The Loose Ties Model Railroad Club will open up their huge display at the Columbia Mall this weekend. Hours are today from Noon to 4:00 PM.
It’s Bingo today at Columbia Montour Vo Tech to benefit HOSA from Noon to 6:00 PM.
Kitchens UMC invites you to join them for their hymn sing this afternoon at 2:30 PM. The church is located on Welliversville Road in Millville.
Bloomsburg University presents the 12th annual national touring film festival “Lunafest” today from 3:00 to 5:30 PM. It’s an afternoon of short films by, for and about women. Tickets are $5.00 at the door…it’s happening the McCormick Center on the BU Campus.
Benton British Cars will meet today at Strevig’s Family Restaurant in Benton at 3:00 PM. If you have a British car, they invite you to join them.
The Women of Wesley United Methodist Church in Bloomsburg are hosting a screening of the documentary “The Line” this morning. The film is about the narrow divide between those who manage to make ends meet and those who struggle to put food on the table.
AGAPE is hosting a free workshop today titled “Don’t Sweat It.” The workshop will focus on stress management, anxiety, and depression.
It’s Science Day at the Children’s Museum in Bloomsburg today. There will be interactive experiences, demonstrations and science kits.
Take your kids to play with the trains at the Free Saturday Trains program today at Christ Memorial Episcopal Church in Danville.
The Loose Ties Model Railroad Club will open up their huge display at the Columbia Mall this weekend. Hours are today from Noon to 5:00 PM and tomorrow from Noon to 4:00 PM.
The Penn State Master Gardner’s of Columbia County present “Spring Into Gardening” today at the Columbia County Agricultural Center.
The Marketplace at 10th Street Plaza in Bloomsburg is hosting a spring craft fest today, rain or shine.
The Potts Grove Fire Hall invites you to a ham and dandelion dinner today from 4:00 to 6:00 PM. The fire company is located off route 642 between Danville and Milton.
The Royal Order of the Raccoons of Columbia County are hosting an all you can eat turkey and waffle dinner this afternoon from 4:00 to 7:00 PM at the Benton Fire Hall.
Straub’s Lutheran Church is serving up a roast beef dinner today from 3:00 to 6:30 PM. It’ll be served family style with take-outs available. The church is on Frosty Road in Danville.
Artspace Gallery is hosting an artist reception tonight from 6:00 to 8:00 PM. The newest display is titled “Fiber and Fairytales,” and will be up through May 19th.
It’s Bingo tomorrow at Columbia Montour Vo Tech to benefit HOSA from Noon to 6:00 PM.
Kitchens UMC invites you to join them for their hymn sing tomorrow afternoon at 2:30 PM. The church is located on Welliversville Road in Millville.
Bloomsburg University presents the 12th annual national touring film festival “Lunafest” tomorrow from 3:00 to 5:30 PM. It’s an afternoon of short films by, for and about women. Tickets are $5.00 at the door…it’s happening the McCormick Center on the BU Campus.
Benton British Cars will meet tomorrow at Strevig’s Family Restaurant in Benton at 3:00 PM. If you have a British car, they invite you to join them.
Berwick Road Work
Berwick business owners... especially those who have shops in the 100 block of West Front Street... got an update last night on a three year road construction project. But a project to get underway Monday has some store owners steaming... since it reduces the flow of traffic... and takes away parking spaces...bringing less people into their stores. Berwick Borough Manager Robert Hivish says he understand the business owners complaints aired Thursday evening... but every effort is being taken to minimize disruptions. The major part of the project annoying business owners begins Monday when northbound Front Street, from the area of Vine to Market Streets is scheduled to be taken down to its base... and reconstructed. A spokesman for Barletta Construction says the work on north and southbound Front Streets should be completed by the Berwick Front Street Festival on May 11th.
Fowlersville Road Crash
Two people are hospitalized following a Thursday afternoon crash on Fowlersville road in North Center Township. The Press – Enterprise is reporting in Friday's edition... Darrin Bellum was westbound on the two lane road when he lost control of his Suburu and slammed into a tree. Bellum fled the scene... leaving an unidentified woman trapped. She was eventually freed... and Bellum caught a short time later in a field... bleeding from a head injury. He's listed in “serious” condition at the Geisinger Medical Center in Danville.
Flood Wall Meeting
A couple of months ago... the federal government confirmed that two Bloomsburg businesses have been awarded grants to build flood walls around their property. Now... a meeting will be held next Thursday to explain the projects... so says Columbia – Montour Chamber of Commerce President Fred Gaffney. The meeting is being organized by Lewisburg – based SEDA – COG... and Gaffney will be one of the speakers. The event taking place at the Bloomsburg Fire Hall starting at 7 PM.
More demolition and cleanup work in the 900 block of West Main Street in Bloomsburg. Since the first part of the week... a crew has used backhoes... a bulldozer and dump trucks to take down some of the ten houses in the block... all a part of a buyout of the flood -ravaged homes in that section of town. Town Administrator Bill Lowthert says once demolition crews move out... the area will be seeded... with the possibility existing that recreation area could sprout from the land.
PennDOT has announced that efforts to better manage staff vehicle usage has resulted in a 30% reduction in staff-assigned vehicles.... and $4 - million in savings on mileage reimbursements. An agency spokesman says by focusing its vehicle assignments to employees who regularly log the highest number of business-related miles each year... PennDOT has been able to substantially decrease employee mileage reimbursements. PennDOT currently maintains a fleet of approximately 1,500 passenger vehicles. Ten years ago... the number of passenger vehicles was more than 2,100.
Hazleton Arson Fire
An early Thursday morning fire in a vacant Hazleton apartment building is a case of arson. That determination made by a State Police fire marshal. The building is in the 100 block of East Chapel Street... and when firemen arrived... flames were shooting out of the structure. It's now up to police to determine who started that early morning fire in Hazleton.
The Hazleton Area School Board should find out next week how mold discovered in bricks at the Academy of Science in Butler Township will be eradicated. The school is scheduled to open in the fall.... and a spokesman for the company who constructed the building says the mold shouldn't cause any delays. Also... the company who provides insurance on the building is expected to pick up the tab.
Judge / Back Taxes
Luzerne County Judge Michael Vough and his wife owe some back taxes... how about 10 – thousand dollars worth. The Luzerne County Tax Claim Bureau says he owes delinquent school taxes for his home in West Pittston... and at Harveys Lake. Judge Vough says he got behind when his primary home in West Pittston was extensively damaged by flood waters back in 2011.
In girls softball Thursday... Central Columbia defeated Lewisburg 14 – 0... Benton downed Bloomsburg 7 – 2... Tunkhannock got by Berwick 3 – 2... Loyalsock getting past Southern Columbia 8 – 4... and Montgomery over powered Millville 21 to nothing.
In major league baseball, the Philadelphia Phillies open a three game weekend series Friday night in Miami against the Marlins. Game time is 7:10. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pregame show at 6:35 PM. The major league game between the New York Yankees and the Cleveland Indians was postponed due to weather.
In the NHL last night.... the Ottawa Senators getting past the Philadelphia Flyers 3 to 1.
900 Block Demolition
After demolishing three flood ravaged homes in the 900 block of West Main Street in Bloomsburg this week.. it was time to pick up the debris left behind. That's just what the demolition crew did Wednesday... moving around what was left of the homes... placing the debris in a pile to be carted off. Now... it's expected demolition of the remaining homes along the block will start Thursday thanks to a back hoe and a bulldozer. Town officials hope the work in the 900 block will be wrapped up by the end of the day Friday.
Ground will be broken Friday in Mt. Carmel... in Northumberland County... for the re-construction of Shamokin Creek. It's all part of an encompassing $14 – million dollar flood control project. Steve Kusheloff with Lewisburg – based SEDA – COG.... says flooding is a major issue along Water Street. When the creek floods... the water makes it's way into basements along the small waterway. Prime contractor on the Mt. Carmel project is Don Bower, Incorporated of Berwick. The project should take three years to complete.
Pat Toomey / Gun Control
Manchin and Toomey. Not exactly household names across America but they may have done what seemed impossible and that's break the deadlock on new gun control legislation. Democratic Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Republican Senator Patrick Toomey of Pennsylvania, two conservatives -- struck a deal Wednesday that would expand background checks to all commercial gun sales, including gun shows and internet sales .. but not private sales, among family and friends.
Hazle Township man has been arrested after police say he made a bomb threat outside the White House on Wednesday. DC police say 44 – year old Krzysztof Wasik of Hazle Township approached the gates of the White House... warning that a bomb would go off in his tractor – trailer parked near by. The surrounding area was cleared, but nothing dangerous was found inside the truck's cab. Wasik is charged with making felony threats and is being held in a DC area jail
Downtown Bloomsburg, Incorporated is doing it's part to make sure if someone tries to set up a business... they're welcomed with open arms. During the Bloomsburg Town Council meeting this week... DBI Manager Adrienne Mael... says there will soon be a packet for prospective businesses as to what steps they need to take to set up shop. The “Welcome to Bloomsburg” packets will soon be at the Columbia Montour Chamber of Commerce on Market Street... the Town Hall and the Columbia County Courthouse.
A Shavertown man... in the back mountain area of Luzerne County... faces a host of kiddie porn charges. Police say 20 – year old Matthew Silvesteri was arrested this week... and charged with ten counts of allegedly possessing child pornography found on a computer. After his arrest... Silvesteri was released after posting bail.
A 13 – year old Schuylkill County teenager is in trouble with the law. Police say the teen allegedly bit the hand of the assistant principal of the Schuylkill Intermediate Unit 29 late last week. Now the girl faces a felony charge of aggravated assault.
State Representative Lynda Culver will meet with senior citizens at a forum Thursday night in Sunbury. The event is part of Representative Culver's grassroots efforts involving Northumberland and Snyder County's senior citizens. Also on hand will be representatives from a hospital... a law office... the Northumberland County Office of Aging and the Pennsylvania State Police. The forum will be held in the conference room of the Sunbury Community Hospital starting at 5:30.
Two Pennsylvania National Guard chief warrant officers were killed in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan this week. The state says 34 – year old Matthew Ruffner of Harrisburg... and 27 – year old Jarett Yoder of Mohnton... in Berks County... were piloting an AH-64 Apache Helicopter during a reconnaissance mission when their aircraft crashed. The soldiers were serving with the Pennsylvania Army National Guard’s Attack Reconnaissance Battalion, based at Fort Indiantown Gap. The incident is under investigation.
There are two additions to the Bloomsburg University football coaching staff as the Huskies continue with spring drills. Long time assistant Frank Williams returns to the staff for the first time since 2007. Williams, who will help with the defensive line, is in his 32nd year with the Huskies. The other addition is linebacker coach Will Blanden who played at Howard University and was an assistant coach at Nichols College in Massachusetts last season. The Huskies will conclude spring drills with the annual Maroon & Gold game Friday night, May 3rd.
In high school baseball Wednesday... Berwick was leading Pittston Area 2 to nothing when the game was suspended due to inclement weather.
MLB / Wednesday
In the final game of their home series against the New York Mets Wednesday night...the Philadelphia Phillies downed the Mets 7 to 3. The Phils are off Thursday night. They will begin a weekend series in Miami Friday night. In other games yesterday... the Arizona Diamondbacks defeated the Pittsburgh Pirates 10 to 2... and the game between the New York Yankees and the Cleveland Indians was postponed.
Berwick Community Watch
Berwick has been called many names over the past few years... including “Methwick....” since the meth problem has mushroomed. But now residents want to take the borough back... and Tuesday night they attended the initial meeting leading to the formation of community watch groups. It's a move Berwick Police Chief Ken Strish says is the right thing to do. The effort is being promoted by the the greater Berwick Area United Way... in co-ordination with the police department.
Hit & Run Folo
Bloomsburg Police are looking for 20 – year old Randall Scott Francis of Oman Road. Once found... he'll be charged as the driver who struck a woman late Friday afternoon in Bloomsburg as she was in the crosswalk... and fled the scene. The Press – Enterprise is reporting in Wednesday's edition police allege it was Francis behind the wheel of an Acura Integra. 35 – year old Paula Brooking was hit as she crossed Main Street at Iron. The impact tossed her onto Acura's hood... into the windshield and onto the street. Brooking was treated at Geisinger – Bloomsburg Hospital.
The Benton Area School District is facing an estimated million dollar deficit as they prepare their 2012 – 2014 budget. That surfaced during a school board meeting this week. Now... school directors are trying to find ways to cut spending... and one coming under the microscope is the Future Farmers of America program. Kerri Christie is a 2007 graduate of Benton High School... taking the FFA course. Ms. Christie says she believed the budget crunch will lead other programs being dismantled. Meantime... Superintendent Penny Lenig – Zerby telling the board other areas being explored include elementary and summer band... as well as athletics.
Briar Creek Twp. Accident
One man is listed in fair condition at Geisinger Medical Center in Danville... after he was found in a ditch along Bogarts Hill Road near Evansville... in Briar Creek Township. The Press – Enterprise is reporting in Wednesday's edition... 49 – year old Gerald Vezendy was found in the ditch... with his motorcycle at his side Tuesday afternoon by a passer-by. He wasn't wearing a helmet at the time of the crash... so he was airlifted to Geisinger's trauma center for treatment. Briar Creek Township police are still investigating the accident.
Taming of the Brew
Want to try specialty beers produced by master brew masters... the Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble's Taming of the Brew is where you should be Saturday. BTE is in it's 12th year hosting the event... and managing director John White – Spunner says it the organization's biggest fundraisers of the year. Tickets are limited... so get yours by going to the BTE website.
Problems for Hazleton area motorists. When they went to go to work Tuesday morning... they found their vehicles with windows broken out. Investigators say that happened when someone used the windows for target practice with either a BB or pellet guns. Police say the vandalism happened on North Laurel, 1st and 5th Streets... as well as South Cedar Street.
One jackpot winning PA Lottery Cash 5 ticket worth $325,000 was among more than 37,000 winning tickets sold statewide for the April 5th drawing. The jackpot winning ticket as sold at the Turkey Hill store on South Main Street in Wilkes – Barre. No one has come forward yet to claim the jackpot.
A Shenandoah funeral director is in trouble with the law. Authorities say Steve Oravitz... who runs a Shenandoah funeral home has admitted that he forged a life insurance policy so that his business could be the beneficiary. The Schuylkill County funeral director now could face fines and jail time for his alteration of the policy.
The Bloomsburg University softball team swept a doubleheader from Clarion Tuesday. The Huskies won the first game 6-4 and the nightcap 14-0. The Bloomsburg University baseball team routed Philadelphia University 24-6.
In high school girls from Tuesday... Warrior Run getting by Southern Columbia 3 – 2... Danville routed Mid West 9 to nothing... Benton defeated Saint John Neuman 18 to 4.
NCAA / Women
Connecticut rolled over Louisville 93 to 60 in the In the NCAA Women's basketball final last night in New Orleans.
MLB / Tuesday
In major league baseball... the Philadelphia Phillies had hot bats Tuesday night... as they defeated the New York Mets 8 to 3. The final game of the three game series will be played tonight starting at 7:05. You can hear the match – up on the WHLM Stations starting with the pregame show at 6:30. In other major league baseball action yesterday... The Pittsburgh Pirates downed the Arizona Diamondbacks 6 to 5... and the New York Yankees trounced the Cleveland Indians 14 to 1.
Flood – Damaged Homes Demolished
It's been a little more than a year and a half since the high water of Tropical Storm Lee produced major flooding in Columbia County.... and now the homes in the 900 of West Main Street in Bloomsburg are coming down. Work began Monday... and Town Administrator Bill Lowthert said the demolition crew took down three houses in short order. Eight other homes are due to come down by the end of the week.
The buyout of the 11 homes was made possible thorough the federal and state governments... with Bloomsburg chipping in some cash. Total demolition price tag is pegged at an estimated $74,000.
Danville Road Project
If you use Routes 11 and 54 in Danville... you can expect a slow – go through there due to road construction. A $644,000 project began Monday... designed to extend the the acceleration and turning lanes. PennDOT's Rick Mason tells us the prime contractor is HRI, Incorporated who will set up single lane traffic. The work also includes new drainage inlets... a spiffed up concrete median and resurfacing the existing roadway. The project at Routes 11 and 54 to be completed by mid – July.
A Berwick native... now in the training and organizational development field says he wants to be one of a hand - full of Alumni to serve on the Penn State Board of Trustees. Chuck Mazzitti says he decided to run for an open position after doing a lot of work for Centre County during the Jerry Sandusky trial last summer. Voting for PSU Trustees begins Wednesday and runs through early May.
Fire Alarm Sounds
Bloomsburg firemen were called out shortly after midnight Tuesday after emergency dispatchers received word of a dryer fire in an apartment at 36 E. Main Street. Two fire engines and fire police responded. They were back in quarters within 20 minutes.
There's a new ride being built at Knoebels Amusement Resort near Elysburg... and just in time for their opening later this month. It's called “The Stratosfear.” It slowly takes 12 passengers 148 feet in the air ... then dropping them at 47 miles an hour. A park spokesman says there is still extensive testing to be done... but says “The Stratosfear” should be up and running for the park's April 27th opening.
NEPA Gas Prices
We have a little more money in our pocket this week as the average price of a gallon of self – serve, unleaded regular continues to drop. The latest Triple A Fuel Gauge report shows gas averaging $3.56 a gallon. More at some locations... less at others. That's down two cents from the weekend... and down 4 cents from a week ago. Over the past month... unleaded regular has dropped an average of fifteen cents a gallon.
A teenager... who got stuck in the mud at the Nescopeck State Park... is resting after being rescued over the weekend. The teen's name has not been released... but he became stuck when he was walking across an old lake that had been drained years ago. Ironically... the incident happened next to a newly constructed bridge which replaced one that washed away.
A man rescued from a burning apartment building over the weekend in Mahanoy City remains in critical condition in an Allentown hospital. That fire claimed the lives of 69 – year old Morris Seabra and his 60 – year old wife, Adele. Authorities say Edward Droginis was pulled from his burning first floor apartment and flown to Allentown. A state police fire marshal says the cause of the blaze remains undetermined.
Authorities in Hazleton are trying to figure out who is interfering with emergency radio communications for the fire department. The problem started a couple of months ago. Just recently firefighters ignored one transmission telling them they didn't need to respond to an emergency situation. Meantime... Hazleton police are trying to track down the culprit.
A Shenandoah funeral director is in trouble with the law. Authorities say Steve Oravitz... who runs a Shenandoah funeral home has admitted that he forged a life insurance policy so that his business could be the beneficiary of the policy. The Schuylkill County funeral director now could face fines and jail time for his alteration of the policy.
Central / Bloomsburg
The Central Columbia and Bloomsburg softball teams renewed their neighborhood rivalry Monday at Central. The final was Central Columbia downing Bloomsburg 10 to nothing. In another girls softball game Danville defeating Selinsgrove 11 to 3.
In high school baseball Monday, Loyalsock cruised by Central Columbia 7 to 1... It was Danville over Shikellamy 6 to 4.
NCAA / Men's
In the NCAA men's basketball final Monday night... Louisville defeated Michigan 82 to 76.
NCAA / Women's
In the women's final Tuesday night, it will be Connecticut against Louisville.
In major league baseball Monday night, in the first game of a three game set against the New York Mets... the Mets downing the Phillies 7 to 2. The Phillies and the Mets meet in game two Tuesday night at 7:05. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pregame show at 6:30. In other games Monday.... the New York Yankees defeated the Cleveland Indians 11 to 6... and the Pittsburgh Pirates got by the Arizona Diamondbacks 5 to 3.
Hundreds of large brown bags lined the streets of Bloomsburg Monday... the result of Bloomsburg University's Big Event... a huge clean up of properties over the weekend. A cross – section of students taking part including some Bloomsburg University Basketball players. In all... an estimated 1,800 university students took part in “The Big Event” over the weekend.
Hit and Run
At last check... Bloomsburg Police are still looking for the driver of a car that struck a pedestrian late Friday afternoon. Surveillance video shows the woman crossing the East Main at Iron Streets when she was hit and tossed up on the hood and windshield of a late model Acura pulling away from the stop light... westbound on Main. The woman was tossed to the pavement... then got up and brushed herself off. She was taken to the Geisinger – Bloomsburg Hospital where she was treated for minor injuries.
Coal Twp Fatal
A 37 – year old Shamokin man is dead after he was tossed from a dirt bike Sunday night in Coal Township. Coal Township police say Malcolm Walburn was pronounced dead at the scene following the crash which was reported shortly after 7 O'clock. It's believed Walburn lost control of the dirt bike moments after he entered Mile Road... just north of First Street.
Trying to get the proposed Skateboard Park project started again began over the weekend. A Bobcat was being used to move dirt from one section of the park... with organizer Travis Creveling telling us there was a lot of thought this winter going into the project. Now... Creveling and company go before Bloomsburg Town Council Monday night to bring lawmakers up to speed as to the progress being made.
Bowling / Kids Sake
A fund raiser over the weekend for the Big Brothers / Big Sisters organization in Columbia County. Dozens of folks taking part in Bowl for Kids Sake at the P-Nut Bowl in Scott Township... part of raising money for their year – round operation. The organization's Diane Macri says although it's just one part of their revenue stream... it's one that's very important. Saturday's Bowl for Kids Sake event was just one of a half dozen held across northeastern Pennsylvania over the past few weeks.
Mahanoy City Fire
A fire marshal has yet to determined what sparked a fire over the weekend in Mahanoy City which killed an elderly couple. Authorities say 60 – year old Adelle Seabra... and her 69 – year old husband... Morris... died when their building caught fire early Saturday morning in the 300 block of Centre Street. The pair was trapped in their second floor apartment. A man who lived on the first floor was taken from the building and airlifted to Lehigh Valley Medical Center in Allentown for treatment.
Wilkes - Barre Shooting
A Wilkes – Barre man is in jail... charged with shooting a Wilkes – Barre man the start of the weekend. 20 – year old Rahsheim Blackmon of Edwardsville is accused of shooting 20 – year old Brad Coleman in a gravel lot in the 100 block of Grove Street. Blackmon was later found and charged with aggravated assault... as well as having a weapon without a license. Bail is set at $50,000.
Operation Clean Sweep
If police in Hazleton don't have enough on their plate to worry about.... now Chief Frank DeAndrea is warning businesses operating in the city to make sure they have a license... and follow city code. DeAndrea says the department's plan to work with other city officials to make sure things are up to snuff in “Operation Clean Sweep.” The operation will get underway later this month... all in an effort to bring businesses in line... and to help beautify the city.
The Bloomsburg University baseball team swept a doubleheader from Philadelphia University Sunday on the upper campus. The Huskies won the first game 13 to 4 and the nightcap 11 to 6.
NCAA Men's Final
The NCAA men's basketball championships will be decided tonight when Louisville plays Michigan. That game will be played at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.
In the women's final four last night in New Orleans...Louisville defeated California 64 – 57... and Connecticut downed Notre Dame.83 – 65. The women's final will be played Tuesday night.
MLB / Sunday
In Major League Baseball Sunday, the Philadelphia Phillies fell to 2 and 4 on the season with a 9-8 loss to the Kansas City Royals. On Monday night the Phils are at home against the Mets. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pregame show at 6:30. The Mets beat Miami Sunday 4-3. In other games, the Yankees beat Detroit 7-0... and the Pirates lost to the Dodgers 6-2.
A Look Ahead
Coming up on the Monday edition of the WHLM Morning Buzz... we'll tell you about more than a thousand Bloomsburg University College students who took part in “The Big Event.” The folks trying to build Skateboard Park near the Bloomsburg swimming pool are getting their act together... trying to get the park constructed... and Big Brothers / Big Sisters had a “Bowling for Kids Sakes” fund raising event in Scott Township. We'll tell you why they need to do that. That and more on the Monday edition of the Morning Buzz on News Radio 930 / WHLM beginning at 6 AM / Eastern.
The 13th annual book sale by the Friends of the Bloomsburg University Library is happening this weekend. Sale hours are today from 1:00 to 4:00 PM and Monday from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.
At Millville High School they present “An Evening With Rogers and Hammerstein” this afternoon at 2:00 PM. Admission is $5.00.
The Liberty Township Fire Hall is hosting an all-you-can-eat breakfast and brunch today from 7:00 AM to 1:00 PM.
The Meadows at Maria Joseph Manor will have an open house today from 2:00 to 4:00 PM.
And, the Orangeville Public Library invites you to Pampered Chef Bingo today at the Orangeville Fire Hall. Games start at 2:00 PM…the fire hall is located at the corner of Mill and Broad Streets in Orangeville.
It’s Bowl For Kids Sake at the Pnut Bowl today in Bloomsburg…the day benefits Big Brothers Big Sisters.
Bloomsburg University Students are out today to say thank you to the community with “The Big Help.” It’s a day where they work to help Bloomsburg town residents out cleaning up their yards for spring.
The Bloomsburg AYSO is looking for help today as they clean up the fields along River Road in Bloomsburg near Town Park.
The Wesley United Methodist Church Crusaders annual rummage sale is happening today at the church located at the corner of Third and Market Streets in Bloomsburg.
The 13th annual book sale by the Friends of the Bloomsburg University Library is happening this weekend. Sale hours are today from 1:00 to 5:00 PM, tomorrow from 1:00 to 4:00 PM, and Monday from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM.
The free Saturday trains program is open as usual at Christ Memorial Episcopal Church in Danville.
The Kidsburg 2.0 Committee is hoping to see you at their Casino Night tonight. It’s happening at the Capitol Restaurant in Downtown Bloomsburg from 7:00 to 11:00 PM.
The Columbia Montour Vo Tech Association is hosting a spaghetti dinner this afternoon from 4:30 to 6:30 PM in the Vo Tech cafeteria. Cost is $7.00 for you, $3.50 for your kids…children five and under eat free.
The Town Hill United Methodist Church Youth are serving up a spaghetti dinner today from 4:30 to 6:00 PM at the church on Town Hill Road in Shickshinny.
The Raven Creek Church invites you to a concert by “The Susquehanna String Theory” tonight at 7:00 PM…there’s no charge for admission.
The Animal Resource Center presents an evening of Music and Wine tonight at the Barn at Boones Dam in Bloomsburg.
At Millville High School they present “An Evening With Rogers and Hammerstein” tonight at 7:00 PM and tomorrow afternoon at 2:00 PM. Admission is $5.00.
The Liberty Township Fire Hall is hosting an all-you-can-eat breakfast and brunch tomorrow from 7:00 AM to 1:00 PM.
The Meadows at Maria Joseph Manor will have an open house tomorrow from 2:00 to 4:00 PM.
And, the Orangeville Public Library invites you to Pampered Chef Bingo tomorrow at the Orangeville Fire Hall. Games start at 2:00 PM…the fire hall is located at the corner of Mill and Broad Streets in Orangeville.
900 Block Demolition
Traffic may be a bit slower Friday on West Main Street in Bloomsburg as demolition crews from Beaver Meadows begin tearing down and removing some of the 11 flood – ravaged homes in the 900 block. Those properties were purchased by the town using federal, state and local monies. All of the homes slated for demolition were damaged by the flood waters produced by Tropical Storm Lee back in September of 2011. Total cost of the demolition is pegged at an estimated $74,000.
Still no word from the New Zealand Navy as to when they'll attempt to recover the bodies of Berwick native Eric Hertz and his wife from the wreckage of their twin – engine plane which went down off the the southeast coast a week ago. After spending time with telecommunication companies in this country... Hertz became the CEO of 2 Degrees... New Zealand's third largest wireless provider. Authorities say Hertz was piloting the twin engine Beechcraft Barron when an engine failed at altitude... falling into the Tasman Sea. County Commissioner David Kovach telling WHLM News he knew Eric Hertz... and delivered the “Berwick Enterprise” to the Hertz home in the Woodcrest sub – division. Meantime... New Zealand's Navy is awaiting for calm seas to begin their recovery operation... one that should only take a day to complete. No word yet on a memorial service for 58 – year old Eric Hertz and his 64 – year old wife, Kathy.
State Senator John Gordner of Berwick is trying to get a Snyder County bypass project off dead center. The proposed roadway would run from Northumberland to the Selinsgrove area... completely getting around the so – called Miracle Mile from Shamokin Dam... running south. Senator Gordner says he's brought the project out of hibernation imposed by the Rendell Administration. However, Senator Gordner says the $558 – million project hinges on passage of Governor Corbett's $1.8 - billion transportation bill... as is. If approved... the current oil franchise fee would be removed... forcing gas prices upward.
Despite the fact this spring's Pennsylvania primary is May 21st... and you now have a time to register to vote... there hasn't been much action in the Columbia County Chief Registrar's office. Matt Repasky says one to two registrations trickle in each day... and since it's an off – year election... it could lead to low voter turnout out. On the ballot for the May primary... a lot of local races... including a Democratic primary for Bloomsburg Mayor... some town council seats... as well as township supervisor slots and school board positions. If you need to change your register or just sign up... you have until April 21st.
Salem Township Chase
A Berwick man is in the Luzerne County Correctional Facility following a high speed chase by Salem Township police early Thursday morning. 27 – year old Jesse Laubach led police on a chase which ended close to his home on Shady Lane. Laubach telling police he was scared. He's being held on $5,000 bond.
Berwick Road Work
You can tell spring is in the air.... with the road construction season getting underway in Berwick Friday. PennDOT says Barletta Materials and Construction will resume road work on Route 11... northbound on Front Street between Dunkin' Donuts and Market Street. The work will consist of saw – cutting the existing pavement... with excavating... placing a new sub – base and pavement. That job starts April 15th. It's all part of a $4 million reconstruction and resurfacing of Route 11 through Berwick.
An 800 acre controlled burn at Ft. Indiantown Gap.... in Lebanon County... caused concern in Columbia and Montour Counties Thursday night. The smoke from that fire was caught by the wind in the upper atmosphere and blew it our way... obscuring the sky... and causing some worries. That prompted someone to call Columbia County emergency dispatch around 6 O'clock Thursday night to report an unknown type fire in the vicinity of Buckhorn and School House Roads. The Hemlock Township Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched to the area... but came up empty handed.
A Danville woman convicted of giving her relatives at a day care center has been ordered to repay $16,000. Karen Kruleski was also sentenced to 18 – months probation and 40 hours of community service... as well as pay a $500 fine. Kruleski was in charge of billing at the Busy Little Beavers day care center when she started giving unauthorized discounts to family members between 2009 and 2011. She was charged with theft in 2012.
Union County Fire
A fire marshal says a blaze at the Barnyard Restaurant near Mifflinburg... is not suspicious. The business burned to the ground Wednesday night... with flames first discovered in the ceiling of the building. They quickly spread. No one was hurt in that Wednesday night fire near Mifflinburg.
State Police in Laporte tell us they've collared five teenagers caught after they allegedly broke into the Turnpike Elementary School in Mildred... in Sullivan County. The incident happened this week when two of the five kids got into the school through a window. They opened the door to let a third teen in... while the other two remained outside the building. When the school's burglar alarm went off they scattered... but all five were captured within minutes. Police say all will be charged with burglary.
For the first time in 20 years, a Bloomsburg University football team will begin spring drills without Danny Hale as head coach. Hale announced that he was stepping down earlier this year. When the Huskies conduct their first spring practice this afternoon, former defensive coordinator Paul Darragh will be the interim head coach. The Huskies will conclude spring drills on Friday, May 3rd with their annual Maroon & Gold game.
With a new nickname and a stadium that features $43 - million in renovations, the Scranton-Wilkes Barre AAA baseball team opened their season in Moosic Thursday night. The final... the Pawtucket Red Sox defeating the Scranton / Wilkes - Barre Railriders 8 to 4.
In major league baseball, the Phillies got their first win of the season, beating the Braves 2-0 Thursday night. The Phils play their home opener Friday afternoon against the Kansas City Royals. The first pitch is scheduled for 4:05. You can hear all the action on the WHLM stations starting with the pregame show at 3:35.
In other action Thursday... the Pittsburgh Pirates lost to the Chicago Cubs 3-2... the New York Mets were defeated by the San Diego Padres 2-1 and the New York Yankees got their first win of the season, beating the Boston Red Sox 4-2.
Controlled Burn Promps Concern
A 500 to 800 acre controlled burn at Ft. Indiantown Gap.... north of Harrisburg... is causing concern in Columbia and Montour Counties Thursday night. The smoke from that fire is being caught by the wind in the upper atmosphere and is blowing it our way... obscuring the sky... and causing some worries. That prompted someone to call Columbia County emergency dispatch around 6 O'clock Thursday night to report an unknown type fire in the vicinity of Buckhorn and School House Roads. The Hemlock Township Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched not only to find no fire anywhere in the area... but then learning that the origin of the smoke was an estimated 80 miles to the south.
For the first time in four months, the unemployment rate for the 12-county area of Northeastern Pennsylvania has dropped. The Department of Labor and Industry says the February rate stood at 9.0%, down a full percentage point from January's 10.0%, following hikes from December's 9.4% and November's 8.9%, when it started to rise from 9.0% in October.
PennDOT is doing it's part to repair or replace structurally deficient bridges across the state. One of the projects is a bridge on Bear Gap Road in Cleveland Township. The agency's Rick Mason says the current bridge will be replaced with a new, pre - cast arch culvert. Mason says the current bridge has been in place since 1934... and is starting to crumble. Detours will be in effect starting Monday... with the entire project to be wrapped by June 1st.
Agri - businessmen across Columbia County as well as across the state are being faced with new rules and regulation dealing with transporting farm equipment... such as driving from field to field. Now... State Representative David Millard wants to make sure farmers are in the know... by sponsoring a seminar on farm transportation regulations. The seminar takes place Friday morning... starting at 9:30 in the Locust Township building in the 1200 block of Numidia Drive.
Firemen Called Out
Bloomsburg firemen were called out around 4:50 Thursday morning when a smoke detector went off at 255 West Street. Police and firemen responded but couldn't find any smoke or flames. An estimated 30 minutes later... fire personnel determined the problem was a faulty detector and returned to quarters.
Children's author and illustrator Suzanne Bloom was greeted by dozens of pre – schoolers yesterday at the Bloomsburg Public Library. It was the first stop on a whirl wind tour to promote her PA award – winning book “The Bus for Us...” a story about Tess waiting for the school bus on the first day of classes. Ms. Bloom says she got her inspiration from visiting with 1st grade teachers. The day – long tour took Ms. Bloom from Bloomsburg... to Danville... to Berwick and Orangeville.
Murder / Suicide
Police in Lehman Township say two people are dead in an apparent murder – suicide in the Lake Silkworth area of Luzerne County. The coroner say 54 – year old Robert Stolarick, Sr. shot and killed his 26 – year old son, Robert, Jr... then turned the weapon on himself. The bodies were discovered at midday Wednesday in their Summit Avenue home.
A Wyoming Valley radio personality was arraigned yesterday on charges he took advantages of unemployment benefits. Authorities say Mark Thomas of Wilkes – Barre received an estimated $25,000 in unemployment benefits... something he wasn't entitled to. Thomas is alleged to have collected the benefits while working at a new car dealership... and Entercom Radio in Pittston. For an eight year stretch... Thomas was a vice – president at Public TV Station WVIA.
Track & Field
A significant winning streak came to an end yesterday in boys track & field. Mount Carmel beat Southern Columbia 79-71. That ended a 23 game winning streak by the Southern Columbia boys program. In the girls meet, Southern Columbia beat Mount Carmel 84-66.
High School Baseball
In high school baseball Wednesday... Mifflinburg defeated Danville 9 – 5... Montgomery getting by Millville 4 – 3... and Muncy downed Benton 15 to nothing.
High School Girls Softball
In girls softball... it was Bloomsburg over Montgomery 6 – 2... Mifflinburg getting by Danville 1 – nothing... Benton defeated Millville 11 – nothing... and Central Columbia downed Loyalsock 5 – 4.
MLB / Phillies
In major league baseball Wednesday night... the Atlanta Braves took the Philadelphia Phillies to the woodshed 9 – 2. The Phils and Atlanta tangle Thursday night. Catch all the action starting with the pre – game show at 6:35 on the WHLM Stations. The Pirates defeated the Cubs 3 – nothing... the Boston Red Sox got by the New York Yankees 7 – 4... The Mets downed the San Diego Padres 8 – 4.
In the NHL Wednesday night... it was the Philadelphia Flyers over Montreal 5 to 3.
In the NBA... The Charlotte Bobcats getting by the Philadelphia 76ers 88 - 83.
Head Coach Hired
There will be a new head Panther on the sidelines at this fall's Bloomsburg High School football games. Mike Kogut was hired as head football coach Tuesday night by the Bloomsburg school board on a vote of 5 to 3. He'll replace Larry Sones who resigned. Following the vote... Kogut telling WHLM News he's happy to be coaching the Panthers. Coach Kogut will commute between his day job as a teacher of gifted students in the Tri – Valley district in neighboring Schuylkill County.
Ex BU Students Sentenced
Two ex – Bloomsburg University students... who were also field hockey players... will be spending some time in jail after being sentenced in Columbia County Court Tuesday. 22 – year old Lauren McGinley of Wilkes – Barre could serve from 10 days to 12 months behind bars... while 21 – year old Nicole Bruce of Clifford could be jailed anywhere from three days to 12 months. The pair was convicted of simple assault earlier this year during a jury trial in the beating of 25 – year old Ashley Carsia during homecoming weekend back in 2011.
Demolition of a Landmark
It's been going on for weeks.... the demolition of the former Bloomsburg Mills yarn processing and weaving plant on West 6th Street. Crews knocking down the historic building... and all that's left are piles of stones being moved around the site and carted away. Developers Matt Zoppetti and his partner, Sante D'Ambrosio plan to eventually construct apartment buildings for those folks 50 – plus. The project given an okay recently by Bloomsburg Town Council.
A $644,000 safety improvement project along a section of Route 54 at Danville is set to start next week. A PennDOT spokesman says the improvements will extend the acceleration and turning lanes along Route 54 from just north of Montour Street to Route 11. The work will also include placing new drainage inlets, new concrete median and resurfacing of the existing roadway.
A children's author and illustrator will be making the rounds at libraries in Columbia and Montour Counties on Wednesday. Susan Bloom's latest book is entitled “The Bus for Us...” so says Lydia Kegler of the Columbia County Traveling Library. The tour begins at 10 AM Wednesday at the Bloomsburg Public Library... then will move on to the Thomas Beaver Library in Danville at 11... The McBride Public Library in Berwick at 3... with the last stop at the Orangeville Public Library at 4:30.
We now know who was shot as he allegedly burglarized a Hazleton home over the weekend. Police say 26 – year old Zachary Dangelo of Freeland was shot in the abdomen by the owner of a home on Hayes Street while the burglary was in progress. Dangelo is in stable condition. Police are continuing their investigation.
Hazleton Fire Probes
Authorities have ruled that a fire in West Hazleton Monday night... in the 200 block of North Third Street was deliberately set. The blaze began on the third floor of the vacant home. A state police fire marshal making the determination. Meantime... authorities say a second fire Monday night in the 100 block of Fulton Court in Hazleton has been ruled suspicious. The fire began in a second floor bedroom... the cause remains unknown.
Mt. Carmel Project
Ground is expected to be broken sometime this month on a flood control project in Mt. Carmel... in Northumberland County. Through the use of an estimated $13 – million dollars in grants... Shamokin Creek will become a bit deeper... and stone walls will be constructed in order to keep flood waters out of homes on Water Street. Officials say if we have heavy rains... Shamokin Creek quickly rises... flooding dozens of homes.
A state lawmaker wants to make pre-employment drug screenings mandatory for teachers and others who work in schools. Criminal background and child abuse checks are already required for potential school employees. Representative Tony DeLuca says many private employers make applicants submit to drug screenings. The bill would apply to all prospective employees of public and private schools, intermediate units and area vocational technical schools.
Poor field conditions and cold temperatures forced the postponement of Tuesday's Bloomsburg University at Lock Haven baseball game. That game will be played Wednesday afternoon at Lock Haven starting at 3 o'clock.
HS BB / Boys
In high school baseball Tuesday... Bloomsburg down Southern Columbia 6 to 3... and Berwick defeated Wyoming Valley West 13 to 1.
MLB / Phillies
In major league baseball the Phillies play at Atlanta Wednesday. Coverage on the WHLM Stations begins with the pregame show at 6:35.
NCAA Women's Games
In the NCAA women's basketball elite eight Tuesday night... Notre Dame downed Duke 87 – 76... and it was Louisville over Tennessee 86 – 78.
New Head Coach
There will be a new head Panther on the sidelines at this fall's Bloomsburg High School football games. Mike Kogut was hired as head football coach Tuesday night by the Bloomsburg school board on a vote of 5 to 3. He'll replace Larry Sones who resigned. Following the vote... Coach Kogut telling WHLM News he's happy to be coaching the Panthers. Coach Kogut will commute between his day job as a teacher of gifted students in the Tri – Valley district in neighboring Schuylkill County.
It's a new program being launched recently by the Berwick Industrial Development Association... designed to generate good paying jobs in the region. The BIDA's Steve Phillips says the association has a million dollars set aside in it's treasury for companies, which want to expand their work force. Right now.... Phillips says $800,000 has been set aside to loan to large businesses and an additional $200,000 for smaller firms.
The Central Columbia School district is in a bind these days as they head into budget deliberations for the 2013 – 2014 school year. They're facing an estimated million dollar shortfall... and Monday night at the district's school board meeting there was discussion of several options. The Press – Enterprise is reporting in Tuesday's edition... one proposal calls for a librarian to teach English classes... as well as a cut in part – time positions... and a property tax hike. The board will take up the issue again when the board is expected to vote on a preliminary budget April 15th.
A Berwick man will spend up to ten years in a state prison for a 2012 wreck, which killed a woman near Bell Bend in Salem Township... north of Berwick. Authorities say Theodore Luciw was drunk when his pick up collided with a car driven by 84 – year old Rachel Wolfe. Ms. Wolfe's car was in the turning lane of Route 11... on her way home... when Luciw struck her car head on.
The state's revenue figures are in for March... and they show the Commonwealth collected $4.2 – billion dollars in revenue. That's 1.6%... or nearly $70 – million less than anticipated in order to fund the current state budget. However... Revenue Secretary Dan Meuser says overall... year to date... tax collections are running two – tenths of a percent ahead of estimates.
Bloomsburg Rotary Club
The Rotary Club of Bloomsburg is continuing a project they started six years ago. Club Member Tom Tobin says the organization is giving out something that doesn't plug into a game console... or use the internet... but rather dictionarys. Tobin says it's much more than a dictionary... it includes facts and figures about the presidents... some history... along with weights and measures... thus a hand – held encyclopedia.
A condemned Hazleton home was damaged by fire Monday night. The blaze was spotted around 6:30 in the home on North Fulton Court. No one had been living there in a while. The structure was condemned earlier this year. No cause has been giving for Monday night's fire in Hazleton.
PA Fatal Accidents
PennDOT says there were just over 1,310 people killed in crashes on Pennsylvania roads last year. That's the third-lowest number on record and 24 more than in 2011. The agency says the reason... improved highway safety... toughened by laws Governor Tom Corbett has signed. PennDOT data from police reports also show that there were just over 124,062 crashes on Pennsylvania roadways in 2012, a decrease from 125,322 in 2011. Fifteen years ago... 144,542 people died on state highways.
Investigators are trying to figure out what sparked a fire in a vacant house Monday morning in Shenandoah. Crews were called out around 4 O'clock to battle the flames in the dwelling on Chelton Street in the William Penn section of West Mahanoy Township. No one was injured in Monday's blaze in Shenandoah.
Union Co Fatal
A Turbotville woman is dead after her car was hit head on by a car and driver headed the wrong way. Authorities say the accident happened Sunday night on Route 15 north of Lewisburg. 35 – year old Ellen Kear of Turbotville died... after her car was struck by a second car driven by an 81 – year old New York State man going the wrong direction. Police say he slammed into four other cars stopped at a traffic signal before coming to a stop.
The Bloomsburg University softball team swept PSAC Central Division honors this week. Junior Mandi Baer was the Division's athlete of the week... and senior Kate Paine was the pitcher of the week. The Huskies have a record of 16 and 4. They play Lock Haven Friday in a double header at Hutchinson Field.
In high school baseball Monday... St. John Neuman defeated Columbia Montour Vo tech 17 to 11.
Southern Columbia defeated Benton 7 – nothing.
In major league baseball... the Philadelphia Phillies opened the regular season Monday night in Atlanta... with the Braves taking advantage of starter Cole Hamels... with three home runs. The final... the Braves downing the Phils 7 to 5. In other games... it was the Mets over the Padres 11 – 2... the Pirates lost to the Cubs 3-1 and the Yankees were beaten by the Red Sox 8-2.
Two tickets to the final four were punched last night in the NCAA women's basketball tournament: California just getting by Georgia 65 – 62... and Connecticut downs Kentucky 83 - 53.
The search is continuing off the east coast of New Zealand for a Berwick native and his wife... missing and presumed dead following a private plane crash at the start of the weekend. The New Zealand Herald is reporting 58 – year old Eric Hertz and his wife were flying in his twin – engine Beechcraft Barron when it developed engine trouble and went down. Eric Hertz grew up in Berwick and in 2009 became the chief executive officer of 2Degree Mobile... New Zealand's third largest wireless phone company.
New Football Coach, Maybe
He says he's ready to coach high school football again. The name of 37 – year old Mike Kogut goes before the Bloomsburg School District Board of Education Tuesday night for approval as the new head coach for the Panthers. Kogut is no stranger to Bloomsburg having played and coached football under the University's Danny Hale. He doesn't plan to give up his day job as a teacher for gifted students at Tri – Valley high school in Hegins in Schuylkill County... commuting to Bloomsburg to coach the Panthers.
Now that the State House has passed legislation designed to take the state store system private... the bill's fate is now in the hands of the Pennsylvania Senate. If approved and then sent on to Governor Corbett for his signature... beer distributors will have first shot at purchasing licenses.... so says State Representative David Millard of Mt. Pleasant Township. Under the proposal... beer distributors could obtain a license to sell wine at $15,000 in addition to a yearly permit fee... while if deciding they want to sell spirits... that initial license fee would be $37,500... as well as an annual permit fee.
A State Police fire marshal is expected to be in Ashland... in Schuylkill County... Monday in order to determine what started a blaze in a vacant house. Authorities say it happened late Saturday night on Brock Street. Firemen were able to stop the blaze from spreading to adjacent homes. No injuries were reported.
An alleged burglar was shot and wounded by a home owner who found the man inside his Hazleton home over the weekend. Police Chief Frank DeAndrea says when the unidentified 47 – year old home owner stepped inside his Hayes Street property... he found a 26 – year old Freeland man allegedly burglarizing the place. The home owner hit the alleged burglar in the abdomen. No charges have been filed yet.
A high school teacher in Nanticoke has been cleared of any wrongdoing. As we reported last month... the teacher was accused of alleged inappropriate conduct with several female students. No word if the teacher has been returned to the classroom... or if any administrative action will take place.
Dunkin' Donuts Robbery
Police in Plains Township... near Wilkes – Barre are looking for two men who robbed a Dunkin' Donuts store along Route 115 late Sunday night. An employee telling our media partner... Newswatch 16... two men wearing ski masks strolled in and robbed the store... making off with an estimated 500 dollars in the cash register. It's believed one of the men had a weapon. No one was hurt.
For those of us living in the 570 area code... there will be a change in the way we dial our phone come September 21st. The Public Utility Commission says that's the day we will need to dial ten digits... using 570 area code plus the phone number. The change is necessitated to take care of the new 272 area code which applies to phone subscribers who get new phone numbers starting October 21st.
Governor Corbett is making a pitch for a proposed increase in state spending to combat the domestic violence that claims an average of one life every three days in Pennsylvania. The $1.3 - million dollar boost to $13.8 - million would bolster an overextended array of services from shelters for battered women to counseling and legal services, Corbett's appearance with anti-domestic violence advocates continued a string of appearances around the state as he stumps for an ambitious $28.4 billion state budget plan now under consideration by lawmakers.
For the third time in his Bloomsburg University career, John Stutzman has been named the Eastern Wrestling League Coach of the Year. In his 8th season with the Huskies, Stutzman guided his team to a dual meet record of 17 and 3 and the school's first outright Eastern Wrestling League dual meet championship.
The NCAA basketball final four is set. On Sunday... Michigan downed Florida 79-59 and Louisville defeated Duke 85-63. Next Saturday in the semifinals, Louisville will play Wichita State and Michigan will take on Syracuse. The final four will be in Atlanta.
Atlanta is also the venue for the Phillies regular season opener. Monday night the Phils play the Braves. You can hear that game on the WHLM Stations beginning with the pregame show at 6:30.
In the opening game of the major league baseball season Sunday night.. The Houston Astros defeated the Texas Rangers 8 to 2..
In the NHL Sunday... the Philadelphia Flyers just getting by the Washington Capitals 5 to 4.
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