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Spirit Of Giving Luncheon Supports NSC January 16, 2018

The annual Spirit of Giving Luncheon benefiting Oxford Neighborhood Services Center (NSC) was held on Jan. 15 at the Penn's Grove Middle School. Scheduled to correspond with the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, the event is designed to focus on community service.

"We gather together to participate in the world's oldest ritual - to break bread together in community prayer," said Oxford Education Foundation director Raymond Fischer in the invocation before the meal.

This year's featured speaker was Chuck Holt, president and CEO of The Factory Ministries of Paradise. "It was refreshing to walk into a school where numerous people from the community have gathered for the purpose of making this community a better place. People are excited to be a part of something bigger than themselves," he said after the meal, noting that Martin Luther King Jr. Day is a perfect time for the luncheon. "What a better day to have an event like that than on a day when we honor someone who stood and gave his life to address inequality."

Holt told the audience that he follows three principles, the first of which is that everyone's journey matters. "If you really believe that, it changes everything," he said.

Secondly, he said, everyone, regardless of any background or economic position, is on the same journey. "I might be a little bit farther along. That's not because I'm greater than anyone; it's because someone helped me along," Holt said.

The final principle, said Holt, is that "the journey has to be rooted in the context of significant relationships." "Every single one of us has been impacted in some way by someone," Hold said. "If I really expect significant things to happen in people's lives, I have to be willing to have significant relationships."

The Spirit of Giving Luncheon was attended by NSC supporters from across the community as well as elected officials, including Chester County Commissioner Terence Farrell and state Rep. John Lawrence. State Sen. Andy Dinniman delivered a proclamation from the state Senate commemorating NSC and its good work.

"I think what creates a healthy community is when every single person in a community says, 'I can't do everything, but I can do something,' said Holt. "I encourage everybody to walk out your door ... and say, 'What can I do to make a difference? How can I help?' We all can't do it all, but we all can do one thing. The bottom line is we need to rally around individuals and families that have needs."

According to event host James McLeod, who founded the Spirit of Giving Luncheon in 1990 with his late wife, Mary, the fundraiser is important to NSC at this time of year, particularly in the very cold winter. "Their financial resources are stretched thin on a regular basis, then add in the wintertime," he said, adding, "It's only fitting we would honor an organization like Neighborhood Services Center on Martin Luther King Jr. Day."

NSC provides services to an average of 800 households each month. For more information about the organization, readers may visit, email or call 610-932-8557.


Grange Plans Fundraiser January 16, 2018

Chester Valley Grange, 3295 Phoenixville Pike, Malvern, will offer homemade soups and hoagies on Saturday, Feb. 3. Pickup will take place from 10 a.m. to noon. All orders must be preordered by Friday, Jan. 26.

Soups include chicken corn, potato, hearty sausage, vegetable chowder, and chicken noodle. Hoagie varieties are Italian, turkey, ham, tuna, and egg salad. The hoagies will include lettuce, onions, tomatoes, sweet or hot peppers, and mayonnaise or oil. Trays of homemade cupcakes, brownies, and cookies are also available.

Orders may be placed by emailing or calling 610-913-0606. All proceeds will benefit the Grange's community service projects.


Church Names New Organist, Music Director January 16, 2018

Sean Fox was recently named the organist and music director at St. Mary's Episcopal Chapel in Warwick Township. His first service playing the organ at the local historic church was on Jan. 14.

Fox, who resides in Mohnton, is already familiar with St. Mary's and its members, including pastoral leader Alan Lindsay and parish administrator Peggy Kandle, who had served as interim music director. "(Fox) was my organ teacher for a time," Kandle noted.

Fox has been a guest organist at St. Mary's and has played for the church's Christmas service. He succeeds former organist Katie Rutt and interim organist Sharon Levering.

Fox describes the music played during the Sunday service as traditional. Some of the hymns featured on Jan. 14 included "How Bright Appears the Morning Star," "The People Who in Darkness Walked" and "Christ, Whose Glory Fills the Skies."

In addition to the organ, St. Mary's is home to a baby grand piano, which was dedicated during a Sunday service last September. It was donated to the congregation by Calvary Church in Conshohocken.

"I (will) play the church's old digital Hammond organ and the piano mostly for prelude," Fox said. "I also play guitar, so there's possibilities for that in the future." He added that the church has a pipe organ as well, which he hopes will be restored in the future.

Fox is the founder of a Morgantown music store, where he teaches guitar, piano and organ. He also teaches a beginner guitar class at Chester County Night School. "I have a large roster of piano and guitar students," he noted.

Fox said he is excited to play at St. Mary's Episcopal Chapel, also known as Old Saint Mary's Church, which is listed on the National Historic Registry. The current church building dates to 1843, when it was constructed to replace the original structure built in 1806.

The church is a one-story, rectangular stuccoed fieldstone structure built in the Gothic Revival style, and it features a hand-carved wooden altar and wooden doors that enclose the church pews. The church is surrounded by the parish cemetery, with burials dating back to 1806.

"I love this building," Fox stated. "It has an air about it. It's very beautiful."

He also said that congregation members all know and support each other and that they take special care of the old church building. "Everyone is so close here; everybody knows each other," he said.

"We are a family," Kandle added.

Sunday worship at St. Mary's is held at 10:15 a.m., and a Bible-based forum for adults is offered at 9 a.m. Light refreshments, including coffee and baked goods, are available before and after the service.

In addition to holding Sunday services, St. Mary's Chapel is open for tours, private meditation and prayer every Wednesday from 1 to 4 p.m. Kandle will guide visitors through the church and the historic cemetery that surrounds it.

The cemetery includes gravesites of veterans from as far back as the Revolutionary War. The cemetery also contains the grave of the church founder, the Rev. Dr. Levi Bull.

Lindsay also leads "Breakfast With the Bible," a Bible study group that is held every Friday at 8:30 a.m. at the Morgantown Coffee House, 4997 N. Twin Valley Road, Elverson. Attendees from all denominations are welcome, and people can join the group at any time.

St. Mary's Chapel is located at 161 Warwick Road, Elverson. The community is welcome to attend Sunday services and the Bible study group and to tour and visit the church on Wednesday afternoons. For more information, readers may email Lindsay at


Students Create Birthday Baskets For Children In Need January 16, 2018

For the second consecutive year, members of the Phipps family of Chester Springs, along with the third-grade class at Pickering Valley Elementary School, created 30 birthday baskets filled with items such as cake mix and frosting that will be distributed to families in need served by the Lord's Pantry of Downingtown.

Ava Phipps, 8, received a $500 Disney Summer of Service grant through Youth Service America (YSA) to finance the cost of the supplies. Last year, her twin sister, Olivia Phipps, received the grant, which is designed to support a community service project that benefits families.

"We can only put one name on the grant. We applied with Ava's name this year, since Olivia applied last year," explained Kristin Phipps, the girls' mother. "One twin was the grantee, but both took part. Ava wanted to take the lead this time."

Kristin explained that the grants are awarded to children ages 5 to 18. "If the grantee is under 13, the parent is required to help complete the application and submit it on (his or) her behalf," said Kristin. "They give out 270 grants a year in the United States and only 14 in Pennsylvania, and two of them were given to children age 8 and under. Ava is one of the youngest students to receive this award and the only student in the Downingtown Area School District."

Ava and Olivia's third-grade class, along with their teacher, Gloria Burgos, assembled the baskets after school on Jan. 12 and made homemade birthday cards for each basket. Each basket contained about 15 items - everything needed to celebrate a child's birthday. "The baskets included cake mix, frosting and birthday candles, a (birthday) banner, balloons and a centerpiece," Kristin said, noting that plastic tablecloths and silverware, cups, paper plates and napkins were also included.

"One of my favorite things are party blowouts (noisemakers), and they are also in there," Ava added.

Two local grocery stores also donated gift cards. "Their gift card donations toward the event allowed us to add an additional item - a box of party straws - to each basket, as well as (purchase) construction paper for the cards and plenty of snacks for the third-grade class, which worked so hard to make the 30 baskets and cards," Kristin reported.

Additionally this year, local officials attended the basket assembling activity, including Sen. John Rafferty, Rep. Becky Corbin and Kori Walter, district director for Congressman Ryan Costello. "They made baskets and handmade cards for the children as well," said Kristin. "They got right to it and committed their service to the project." Rafferty also presented Ava with an honorary certificate.

Olivia, Ava, their mother and their younger sister, Cora, delivered the baskets to the Lord's Pantry on Jan. 15, the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service. "The Lord's Pantry has over 700 families in their program that live in the Downingtown Area School District," Kristin said, noting that celebrating a birthday is an important event that families should share together. "Hopefully it will create a strong family bond. There are other events to do to create positive memories, but (a birthday celebration) is just one example of that."

Kristin said that the family plans to apply for the grant again this summer, this time in Olivia's name. "It has been a pleasure working with Jan Leaf, the executive director of the Lord's Pantry," she added. "We received great feedback last year that the children (served by the Lord's Pantry) loved the birthday baskets."

For more information about YSA and other grants available for community service, readers may visit


YCCF Receives Award January 16, 2018

In recognition of outstanding contributions to the city of York, York County Community Foundation (YCCF) was presented with a Commonwealth Award from 10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania for its social impact investment work. The award was presented during the Commonwealth Awards celebration on Dec. 7, 2017. At the event, YCCF was also recognized for the role it played in the York City Heritage Rail Trail Development and the Salem Square Neighborhood Initiative.

In the past three years, YCCF has invested more than $1 million in revitalizing downtown York through a variety of funds and initiatives. Recognizing that it is often a challenge for developers to make the financials work on urban redevelopment projects, YCCF recently established the Social Impact Investment Fund to provide patient capital at attractive rates.

The Social Impact Investment Fund mirrors what community foundations are doing across the country, using some of its assets to invest in economic development projects that may or may not be led by nonprofits. The fund also provides a vehicle for donors who want to support redevelopment while making a charitable gift to the fund. The fund was established to promote economic development in downtown York city through market-rate housing, redevelopment of blighted and vacant spaces, and development along the Codorus Creek.

Distributions from the fund may be in the form of grants, loans or other equity investments. Proceeds from the investments are returned to the fund for redistribution to new projects. Through the Social Impact Investment Fund, YCCF provided $250,000 in loan funding for RSDC's Market Street Revitalization project and made a $200,000 financial commitment to the redevelopment of the Yorktowne Hotel.

To create and sustain momentum in downtown's economy, YCCF dedicated portions of its discretionary Fund for York County and Beautiful York Fund to quality public and commercial spaces. In recent years, these funds awarded more than $350,000 in grants for the lighting of Continental Square, improvements to the rail trail, public art, building capacity of the Community First Fund to implement new market tax credit projects, security cameras in the Market District, revitalization of the Salem Square neighborhood and $50,000 toward predevelopment costs for the Yorktowne Hotel.

YCCF knows that many people are excited about the renaissance of downtown and it wanted to provide new opportunities for givers to join in. YorIt is an initiative of YCCF, comprised of people who are excited about building their lives in York, who are enthusiastic about York's potential, and who wish to contribute to the vitality of York. Through the YorIt Social Venture Challenge, the group supports emerging, socially minded organizations that add to the vitality of York. YorIt members pool their gifts and solicit project ideas, interview applicants, and organize a live pitch event where members vote on the project that they think will create the greatest spark downtown. Successful Social Venture Challenge winners include Working Class York, The Parliament Arts Organization, Pedi Cabs of York and the Taste Test pop-up restaurant.

For more information, readers may visit


Distinguished Honors Posted January 16, 2018

Dallastown Area High School recently announced its first trimester distinguished honor roll for 2017. The distinguished honor roll is achieved by earning a GPA at or above 4.0. Students in grades nine through 12 were recognized for their academic achievements.

Freshmen who earned placement on the distinguished honor roll are Carter J. Alwan, Jade M. Andrews, Telia S. Andrews, Grace N. Ashlin, Arnav H. Bal, Cassandra Beeler, Kyle P. Behlert, Andrew P. Bernacki, Alexandrea M. Bloss, Brittany N. Bodine, Gina E. Bolli, Tye E. Bowers, Haley Brackett, Kenly R. Brown, Lily E. Brown, Matthew V. Byczynski, Meghan G. Byerly, Makayla N. Calaman, My'Lan Canty, Gavin M. Connors, Ashton S. Crump, Gillian R. Cunningham, Chase K. Curran, Cassandra J. Dellone, Emily K. Dias, Emelia Diaz, Abigail E. Dolmetsch, Jenna N. Donohue, Ean M. Dudley, Lana Dumnich, Rocco C. Dumnich, Kaitlyn M. Durgin, Victoria R. Duvall, Noah B. Eberly, Taylor K. Edwards, Spencer C. Ehrman, Maya N. Eiben, Alexis Esher, Camryn P. Eveler, Jillian N. Fetrow, Emma N. Fitzgibbons, Gloria E. Fleming, Brooks R. Gable, Lauren E. Garcia, Mileena A. Garonzik, Acetria Graves, Christopher J. Groff, Joseph P. Hanuska, Zachary D. Hine, Jacob M. Holt, Michaela G. Hoover, Delilah R. Hughes, Carly A. Jackson, Berry Jiang, Dalani M. Johnson, Katy E. Jones, Anthony J. Kalligonis, Ryan M. Kauffman, Megan A. Kelly, Anna C. Kerns, Hanni Kim, Ryan J. Kluttz, Cameron L. Koons, Justin N. Kopp, Frank L. Koprowicz, Olivia L. Krone, Hannah M. Lancaster, Kaitlin M. Landis, Stephanie N. Lentz, Aidan Lese, Kamryn E. Linsenbigler, Kemoni A. Lloyd, Brittany A. Loken, Hunter W. Long, Ethan Maddox, Breanna R. Malle, Ameer-Uddin A. Maniar, John A. Marseglia, Laylah L. Mauler, Sophia G. McHenry, Jacob F. McLain, Ibnat I. Meah, Matthew M. Mikita, Eliza K. Miller, Kelly N. Miller, Nicholas R. Miller, Rachel N. Miller, Shaley R. Mills, Phoebe Monger, Mark D. Morton, Diana A. Murillo Lozano, Lora R. Nowak, Sydney R. Ohl, Christopher J. Pantano, Dylan Patel, Lian S. Peach, Lena Pham, Blake M. Pitzer, Jamie E. Pottman, Mark J. Pottman, Kathleen E. Queenan, Ella Rager, Astha Ray, Ricardo J. Rivas, Madelyn Rodriguez, Savannah Rodriguez, Elizabeth A. Rodski, Aryan Saharan, Addison R. Sands, Audrey Sarro, Peyton H. Scarborough, Macy Schaefer, Milana R. Schechtman, Alison N. Schmit, Alexandra P. Scott, Ethan Shaffer, Matilyn E. Shandlay, Sushant Sharma, Chloe E. Sharp, Riley N. Sharp, Allison M. Shirey, Haley M. Shuck, John M. Shue, Chadee L. Simms, Clarissa K. Simms, Allison A. Smith, Holden Q. Smith, Shaelyn R. Smith, Collin A. Snyder, Ryan J. Snyder, Savannah L. Stallings, Jessica E. Sutton, Alexander N. Szewc, Amelia H. Tolerico, Abigail G. Trembly, Samantha A. Trumble, Emily K. Tsai, Nathaniel T. Ward, Darius P. Watkins, Abigail V. Way, Ella D. Weary, Samantha R. Weinstein, Sydney M. Weinstein, Michael R. Williams, David J. Willis, Cooper P. Willoughby, Gabrielle Wilson, Brynn R. Winemiller, Elaina L. Winemiller, Madison T. Wise, Michail Wise, Joseph P. Wolf, Helen M. Zardus, and Joseph A. Zeranski.

Sophomores who earned placement on the distinguished honor roll include Hannah O. Albrecht, Isha Amin, Isaiah A. Asah, Elise N. Baer, Gunnar A. Bakke, Macy E. Barker, Wyatt E. Bateman, Adam J. Beach, Grace E. Bernadzikowski, Ella J. Bernstein, Julia R. Beyer, Aaron L. Billings, Caio B. Bittencourt, Sarah E. Borger, Spencer Bowman, Casey A. Brady, Emerson P. Brockway, McKenna N. Brodbeck, Sarah Brooks, Kyle F. Bruner, Gabriel L. Buenaventura, Katelynn F. Clegg, Matteo Conigliaro, Skye M. Conners, Katherine M. Conroy, Matthew R. Conroy, Ryan M. Craig, William F. Cuculis, Brynn M. Darr, Nicole E. Daudelin, Kathryn S. Deitch, Emily M. Delp, Isha N. Dev, Megan E. Dubien, Tyler D. Dubien, Antonio C. Dumnich, Joel A. Dunnigan, Ethan Eckert, Alexander Ellerbee, Joseph Z. Emami, Jacob S. Feiser, Katelyn E. Figdore, Luca C. Fimmano, Leah A. Fleagle, Cade M. Fry, Laken M. Fry, Donivan M. Gardner, Georgi K. Georgiev, Bisman K. Gill, Abigail G. Godfrey, Adam C. Golden, Elizabeth M. Gunter, Shelby G. Hallett, Abigail L. Herbert, Brandon G. Herrin, Liana Hoffman, Jacob S. Horning, Jack A. Hotem, Benjamin Howell, Daniel Howell, Siena C. Howie, Julie A. Hulbert, Hannah I. Johnson, Mary H. Joyce, Emiley Kahl, Hannah E. Kaliszak, Kristopher A. Kniess, Russell L. Knight, Abigail F. Kowalski, Christine N. Kwon, Abigail G. Langmead, Alexis Lee, Katherine M. Leidy, Donghang Li, Ethan J. Lilie, Marissa A. Locondro, Jack Lynam, Brady P. Maitoza, Madison E. Markel, Tia R. Mathias, Edward L. Mattiko, Aeryn McClain, Nicholas R. McGlynn, Hannah N. Miller, Kristen E. Miller, Juhi M. Modi, Sarah T. Mtimet, Olivia M. Mumma, Erin S. Nelson, Riley N. Ness, Olivia J. Newcomer, Nautica M. Nolden, Alec C. Norris, Katherine L. Norton, Clare O'Brien, Emma Ockenhouse, Logan M. O'Shea, Benjamin H. Parde, Amani D. Patel, Audrey E. Peri, Kayla J. Peters, Michael E. Pierce, Tyler D. Rakerd, Dylan J. Rexroth, Jaden G. Rivera, Michael T. Roberto, Ashley N. Robinson, Kathleen M. Ronald, Jacob W. Rondeau, Karin M. Ruser, Sami A. Saarinen, Meghan B. Salaga, Eva M. Salyers, Larisa M. Samryk, Isabella M. Scarcelli, Emily M. Schuler, Chloe Seace, Tianna J. Seitz, Danielle M. Setzer, Michael S. Shirey, Jack E. Shuchart, Karissa A. Silar, Jocelyn E. Simpson, Georgios D. Skouras, Olivia K. Smeltzer, Haley A. Smith, Ryleigh Sowers, Joel T. Staub, Emily C. Stoner, Sara N. Stoolmaker, Haley A. Strayer, Alexander J. Suit, Hunter D. Sweitzer, Tyler M. Sweitzer, Claire N. Teyral, Joshua C. Thaler, Abigail G. Trauffer, Joshua D. Trout, Kade A. Warntz, Caroline G. Wentz, Collin Willett, DeAnna N. Williams, Christian M. Williamson, Taylor P. Witmer, Carson P. Wolf, and Wilson J. Zheng.

Juniors who earned placement on the distinguished honor roll are Keira L. Andrews, Dennis M. Andrus, Marissa L. Ashley, Emma G. Ashlin, Christina N. Baker, Stosh E. Beeler, Lauren D. Beharry, Emily L. Bender, Henry A. Bernstein, Samuel F. Betz, Alexandria M. Bielecki, Drew D. Binkley, Alec Bogash, Taylor D. Brackett, Ashleigh H. Brady, Makayla L. Braham, Ryan C. Breighner, Kelly E. Brosey, Andrew R. Brown, Travis M. Bubb, Kiley N. Buser, Kylie B. Calloway, Evan M. Carroll, Tatum M. Cassidy, Melody A. Chilcoat, Raymond J. Christas, Mitchell Clapsaddle, John M. Conner, Jordan R. Cook, Grace E. Coyne, Emmary R. Craun, Kristine Dadufalza, Ricky L. Dean, Kamryn A. Delaney, Zachary E. DePorter, Ayden J. Desenberg, Vignya Dontu, Danielle R. Dubois, Campbell E. Eckenrode, Yael N. Eiben, Jamal S. Evans, Derek L. Felton, Edwin E. Filpo Diaz, Alexa P. Fisher, Peyton N. Fox, Savannah L. Frankovitch, Isabella C. Fredo, Katie Fureman, Carly B. Gable, Ryan P. Getz, Emily A. Girouard, Piper E. Glattacker, Hannah Groft, Julia M. Hagen, Chloe J. Hale, Allison Hameier, Gavin N. Harvey, Megan V. Hastings, Alexa N. Haynes, Margaret L. Helmer, Ashley N. Henry, Austin J. Herbst, Gabriel C. Hiestand, Jacob R. Hogan, Paige T. Hohman, Brandon L. Hole, Alyssa F. Holmes, Sydney A. Hoover, Malachi Hughes, Marissa L. Hunt, Helaina J. Imhoff, Olivia A. Jackson, Kelsey M. Jacobson, Lillian P. Jamison, Samuel D. Jeffers, Kristina J. Jenkins, Taylor M. Jones, Necla E. Kara, Nevin E. Kara, Morgan N. Kistler, Alexa L. Knaub, Holden K. Koons, Jenna K. Krieger, Ashan M. Kumar, Elizabeth S. Kurian, Cole D. Larson, Hannah E. Larson, Dylan Lawson, Aaron Lee, Emma R. Lerch, Jordan F. Lese, Isaiah A. Lewis, Paul D. Lipinski, Benjamin G. Little, Ian C. Loughlin, Carter I. MacDonald, Maha Madapoosi, Ireland M. Maher, Michel J. Malda, Tatiana Matuszewski, Alexzander J. Mauler, Madeline R. McDermott, Aaron S. Merriel, Madison M. Miller, Samantha D. Miller, Natasha M. Milner, Madison B. Moore, Hannah C. Moose, P. Chase Morton, Caroline D. Muth, Olivia J. Myers, Amaya J. Nolet, Karoline A. Nyland, Dakota L. Oak, Olivia E. Orendorf, Matthew Y. Pak, Kush Patel, Jacob T. Plowman, Gabriella K. Pollak, Nylani L. Powell, Mary C. Price, Rebecca E. Rehrey, Aaron J. Reisinger, Lillian M. Ritz, Jasmine M. Roman, Robert M. Ross, Maximos J. Sacarellos, Emily N. Sarro, Nicole A. Sartalis, Melissa J. Sawor, Emma R. Schmitt, Abigail P. Schreck, Brooke A. Schwartz, Darren L. Sciortino, Zachary W. Scott, Joshua D. Sebastian, David W. Shird, Justin A. Sindelar, Lauren Smith, Morgan P. Smith, Jan A. Smolinski, Taylor Spinnicchio, Joshua Stefko, Evan R. Stein, Jordan E. Striebig, Lydia C. Stump, Tristan N. Swartz, Alexander D. Tolerico, Lyndsay R. Torkar, Donovan A. Trauger, Cindy Tsai, Caitlin A. Turnley, Alana R. Urban, Nicholas B. Vallari, Jonathan M. Vasold, Vincent A. Villani, Charlotte M. Weinstein, Alexis N. White, Emily M. White, Isaac D. Wilkins, Meghan L. Williams, Nzinga-Noni T. Williams, Skyler B. Wise, and Eva L. Wolfe.

Students in the senior class named to the distinguished honor roll include Kennedy A. Akpeneye, Kimberly N. Allen, Hannah K. Bachism, Sarah E. Baker, Rumaysaa O. Balleth, Jordann A. Beach, Madison Beard, Ellen E. Beechey, Taylor R. Bemisderfer, Brooke A. Bergman, Ephraim Berthold, Spencer M. Bertok, Eli A. Bitner, Brian J. Bixler, Alyssa M. Blouse, Sadie A. Bowman, Justine N. Boyle, Logan S. Brockway, Ryan W. Brown, Blake T. Bruner, Zoey T. Bruton, Brittany Burns, Madison S. Clapsadle, Rebecca M. Conroy, Wyatt G. Cunningham, Anthony S. Cuomo, Cade M. Curran, Dalton J. Daugherty, Sarah V. Deller, Kaitlyn A. DeStefano, Rebekah E. Dodson, Ryan T. Dodson, Chase A. Donelson, Austin G. Doutrich, Cara M. Druck, Marlena J. Dunnett, Katherine L. Easterday, Mary L. Emami, Mason E. Figdore, Lydia J. Fimmano, William J. Fitzgerald, Jasmine M. Floyd, Robert W. Fogle, Julia Fort, Gavin R. Franz, Christian A. Gideon, Carsyn N. Gold, Zachary B. Grant, Aaron D. Graser, Sarah L. Groetz, Victoria Gruen, Nathan W. Guess, Eion J. Hackett, Daniel J. Hanuska, Christine A. Harney, Zachary A. Hartman, Katelyn N. Herrin, Shane M. Hobbs, Allison G. Holt, Dennis R. Hopper, Anna S. Howie, Caroline R. Jennings, Garrett R. Johnson, Paige C. Jordan, Gaitlyn X. Key, Cali L. Kiessling, Kyle B. Kline, Wilson Knaub, Elyse G. Kohler, Hannah E. Langmead, Sarah M. Leader, Paul-Amaury R. Leclerc, Olivia G. Leiphart, Alyssa M. Magness, Anthony Manzo, Hannah G. Marshall, Janitha J. Martin, William J. Mathias, Chase A. Matthews, Brandon M. McGlynn, Olivia G. McLain, Ryan A. Menchey, Jonah C. Miller, Jordyn N. Miller, Thaddeus K. Miller, Ross A. Murog, Isabelle M. Myers, Kevin D. Myers, Megan E. Myers, Wyatt A. Myers, Ethan P. Nace, Neeharika Nallapati, Neilly C. Ndjee, Julianna H. O'Brien, Lindsay T. O'Rourke, Carlos Ortega, Riyana A. Owens, Kirsten E. Pace, Noah M. Pak, Nicholas J. Parker, Madeline C. Patton, Rachel A. Petree, Sydney M. Phillips, Ethan A. Pickett, Miranda C. Pinder, Nicholas J. Polli, Sara K. Preller, Georgia I. Prindle, Divya L. Rajachandran, Shreya J. Rajachandran, Michael V. Raucci, Gabriella M. Ream, Rachel L. Rehmeyer, Nathaniel B. Renner, Mia B. Rexroth, Jackson G. Rock, Victoria N. Romero, Caidan M. Rowe, Lauren E. Russell, Caleigh E. Rutledge, Themistokles G. Sacarellos, Luca Sanchini, Danielle C. Schoeppner, Rebecca L. Schweitzer, Aaron C. Scofield, Wesley A. Sechrist, Brandon Secret, Jordan T. Shaffer, Steele G. Shaffer, Robert E. Shue, Ryan T. Shuey, Quinten B. Slyder, Brett C. Smith, Ian M. Smith, Hannah P. Snowden-Rothwell, Violet E. Spahr, Kyle L. Spencer, Sarah A. Stager, Chad M. Starner, Daniel A. Stayer, Zachary T. Stomberger, Emma E. Stoolmaker, Emily M. Swartz, Keyra N. Swope, Nathan R. Tabb, Kaylee S. Thomas, Julia W. Thornton, Trevor N. Trout, Kenneth B. VanDoren, John F. Wang, Benjamin M. Ward, Megan E. White, Jordan E. Widdowson, Laura N. Willis, William M. Wise, Benjamin A. Writer, Cambrie E. Wynegar, Alyssa L. Yoder, John R. Zardus, Amy Zhong, and Dylan T. Zubkousky.


Theater Group Sets Open Rehearsals January 16, 2018

River Crossing Playback Theatre will offer free open rehearsals on the first Wednesday of each month from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Belmont Theatre, 27 W. Belmont Ave., York. The next event will occur on Wednesday, Feb. 7.

Attendees will be able to interact with some of the River Crossing Playback Theatre troupe members and learn some of the short and long forms used in playback theater, which is based on deep listening improvisation. The rehearsal will feature physical warm-up games, improvisational skills activities, and more. Participants are asked to arrive 10 minutes before the start of the program. The purpose of the rehearsal is to strengthen community connections, help people build skills for deep listening, and enhance participants' innate capacity to create beauty in each moment.

Reservations are requested by contacting by midnight on the day before the rehearsal. Participants are encouraged to wear loose-fitting clothes, bring a water bottle, and refrain from wearing fragrances out of respect for people with sensitivities to these products. Readers may call 717-382-8292 for details. More information is available at


Centennial Church Posts Schedule January 16, 2018

Centennial Lutheran Church, 1330 Hares Hill Road, Kimberton, has posted its schedule of activities.

On Sunday, Jan. 28, there will be a worship service at 9:30 a.m. The service will include a message by pastor Jerry Tancredi and the celebration of Holy Communion. The annual congregational meeting will take place after the worship service. A celebration luncheon will follow the meeting.

Scout Sunday will be observed on Sunday, Feb. 11. Several members of the Scouting community at Centennial will serve during the worship service.

Information about church events is available at or by emailing


AGRA Posts Basketball Results January 16, 2018

The Avon Grove Recreation Association (AGRA) began its 38th year of the youth basketball program with the following results.

In the boys' elementary division, Davis Accounting defeated Filacheck's Furniture 26-18. Jack Calio netted 12 points for Davis Accounting. Evan Kyle popped in 10 points for Filacheck's Furniture.

Yerkes Insurance came away with a 10-6 win over Kelly's Sports Ltd. Trey Nielsen scored eight points for Yerkes Insurance. Gabriel Parkinson put in four points for Kelly's Sports Ltd.

In the girls' elementary division, Whitford Insurance Network pulled out a 12-8 win over Tom's TV. Jessica Ziegler scored six points for Whitford Insurance Network. Lily Martin contributed four points for Tom's TV.

In the girls' junior/senior division, Cari Orthodontics tied Linda's Hair Techniques 19-19. Hannah Hollis netted 13 points for Cari Orthodontics. Andrea Quijano scored six points for Linda's Hair Techniques.

In the boys' junior/senior division, Oxford Plumbing and Heating Inc. defeated John Gallen Photographer 33-14. Sam Balick popped in eight points for Oxford Plumbing and Heating Inc. Joseph Lewis and Garrett Anderson each contributed four points for John Gallen Photographer.

Nowland Associates Contractors took the win 30-25 over DuVall Bus Service. Luke Watson netted 15 points for Nowland Associates Contractors. Jackson Colonna, Hagan Nagle, and Zachary Hudson each contributed six points for DuVall Bus Service.


Line Officers, Board Members Named January 16, 2018

Longwood Fire Company recently named new line officers and board members during the organization's annual reorganizational meeting.

The fire company promoted Mike Wells from captain to assistant fire chief, and firefighter Bas deVries was promoted to fire lieutenant. The remaining line officers are the same.

On the board, Mike Leventry is now vice president, Matt Glass is secretary, Brent du Pont is treasurer and Ron Mazik is financial secretary. The rest of the board remained the same, including board president Brad Bowman.

Longtime leaders Mert LaBare and Joe Deckman were honored for their service as fire captain and board treasurer, respectively.

Longwood Fire Company has served the communities of Kennett, East Marlborough, Pennsbury and Pocopson townships since 1921. Longwood Fire Company provides fire and rescue and emergency medical services 24 hours per day, 365 days per year. For more information, readers may visit


Donations Pay Off Lunch Debts January 16, 2018

In December 2017, two anonymous donations paid off more than $800 of student lunch debt at Penn London Elementary School and Avon Grove Intermediate School, as well as the more than $1,600 lunch debt of Fred S. Engle Middle School (FSEMS) and Avon Grove High School students. Avon Grove students have received yet another random act of kindness, this time in the form of an ongoing donation. The donor, a local business owner, has committed to providing $250 per quarter to help ensure that all FSEMS students can move into high school without a lunch debt.

When asked what inspired the donation, the good Samaritan shared that the inspiration for the donation arose from partaking in an event at FSEMS. The donor wanted to help families in need and make sure all children are fed.

The Avon Grove School District policy provides full meals for all students. For students who are unable to pay, a negative balance is recorded, and weekly invoices are sent home. All students are eligible to receive meals regardless of their ability to pay. Twenty-seven percent of FSEMS students are enrolled in the free or reduced-price meal plan.


Foundation Selects Grant Recipients January 16, 2018

The Brandywine Health Foundation has announced 30 grants totaling $824,000, bringing the foundation's total giving to more than $16.5 million since it began awarding grants and scholarships in 2002.

In the Coatesville community, a group of nonprofit agencies providing high-quality, critical services to its neighbors. The foundation's grantmaking committee, led by Margaret Rivello, vice chair, Brandywine Health Foundation, reviewed several dozen proposals which led to the foundation's board of directors unanimous approval of each of the community grants.

The following nonprofit agencies and community organizations have received FY 2018 grants from the Brandywine Health Foundation:

Priority 1, Health Equity - Ensure that every resident of the greater Coatesville community has the opportunity to make choices that will allow them to live a long and healthy life, regardless of their race, ethnicity, gender, disability, income or background.

Recipients include Community Volunteers in Medicine, $10,000; Human Services Inc., $40,000; Maternal and Child Health Consortium, $45,000; Public Citizens for Children and Youth (PCCY), $5,000; Pennsylvania Health Access Network, $7,500; Valley Youth House, $5,000; and Volunteer English Program in Chester County, $7,000.

Priority 2, Healthy Youths - Empower youths ages 12 to 24 in the community to achieve and maintain a healthy lifestyle, cultivate leadership skills and experience, and achieve their goals for the future.

Recipients include The Bridge Academy and Community Center, $7,500; Chester County Futures, $5,000; Coatesville Youth Initiative, $75,000; The Parkesburg Point, $5,000; and Youth Mentoring Partnership, $5,000.

Priority 3, Healthy Community - Improve community conditions that help impact the health of everyone in greater Coatesville.

General recipients include Chester County Food Bank, $20,000; Coatesville Area Public Library, $25,000; Coatesville Partners for Progress, $10,000; Coatesville Area Senior Center, $5,000; The Crime Victims' Center of Chester County, $10,000; Good Works Inc., $7,000; Home of the Sparrow, $6,000; and Support Center for Child Advocates, $5,000.

First responder groups that received grants include Chester County Economic Development Foundation, Chester County Public Safety Training Facility, $13,000; Keystone Valley Fire Department, $4,000; and Washington Hose Company No. 1, $3,000.

Through a multi-year pledge commitment through 2020, ChesPenn Health Services will receive $312,000 in fiscal year 2018, with a total grant of $870,000.

Multi-year pledge commitments through fiscal year 2018 were made to Chester County Health Department's Nurse-Family Partnership, $10,000; Child Guidance Resource Centers, $75,000; Coatesville Center for Community Health, $12,000; Domestic Violence Center of Chester County, $20,000; Family Service of Chester County, $20,000; and Planned Parenthood Southeastern PA's Coatesville Health Center, $50,000.

To learn more about the foundation, readers may visit or contact


Radon Action Encouraged January 16, 2018

January is national Radon Action Month. An estimated 40 percent of Pennsylvania homes have higher levels of radon than national safety standards, due to the state's geology. However, residents can perform a simple test to detect this gas, which is considered the second-leading cause of lung cancer.

Radon is an odorless, colorless radioactive gas that occurs naturally from the breakdown of uranium in soil and rocks and enters homes through cracks in the foundation or other openings. High levels of radon tend to be found in basements, but the gas can be found anywhere in the home.

Winter is a good time to test for radon, because doors and windows are generally closed, providing more accurate results. Simple radon test kits are inexpensive and available at home improvement and hardware stores.

For more information on radon, testing, and daily tips, readers may visit


Thibodeau Earns Academic Honor January 16, 2018

Maranda Thibodeau of Chester Springs has been named to the fall 2017 president's list at Southern New Hampshire University, Manchester, N.H.

Eligibility for the president's list requires that a student accumulate an academic grade point average of 3.7 to 4.0 and earn 12 credits for the semester.


Diem-Ridinger January 16, 2018

Clifford and Kimberly Diem of Lancaster have announced the engagement of their daughter, Dakota Diem of Lancaster, to Jay Ridinger of Lancaster.

The bride-elect graduated from Conestoga Valley High School in 2009 and Indiana University of Pennsylvania in 2013. She is employed by the Cameron Estate Inn in Mount Joy.

The groom-to-be is the son of John Ridinger of Lancaster and Christine Landis of Lancaster. He graduated from Manheim Township High School in 2007 and Franklin and Marshall College in 2011. He is pursuing a teaching certificate in Lancaster.

An April 2019 wedding is planned.


Farm Show Celebrates Diversity January 16, 2018

Despite single-digit temperatures early in the week, throngs of visitors and exhibitors took part in the 102nd Pennsylvania Farm Show, an annual indoor agricultural event. The 2018 show, themed "Strength in Our Diversity," highlighted the breadth and diversity of Pennsylvania's agriculture and food industry, the people who make it thrive, and investments the state has made to support the industry's long-term prosperity. Nearly 14,000 competitive exhibits - including 3,327 competitive exhibitors and 232 commercial exhibitors - were on display within the 24 acres spread throughout the complex's 11 halls and three arenas.

The eight-day show kicked off with the traditional unveiling of a butter sculpture depicting the diversity of Pennsylvania agriculture, specifically careers and roles that support the dairy industry.

Gov. Tom Wolf officially opened the show on Jan. 6, recognizing the nearly 580,000 Pennsylvanians who work in the agriculture and food industry. During the ceremony, Wolf reinforced his administration's commitment to building an agriculture industry where everyone, regardless of their background or zip code, has a chance to succeed.

The governor addressed more than 500 state and local officials on Jan. 10, noting that agriculture is a vital industry that policymakers and industry personnel must work collaboratively to strengthen and grow.

On Jan. 8, Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding helped to unveil a new plan to support healthy pollinator populations in the face of challenges that have decimated some species. The Pennsylvania Pollinator Protection Plan is the product of a collaborative effort by state officials, researchers, farmers, beekeepers, and the public, and according to Redding, further collaboration will be needed to reverse declining populations.

Redding also hosted the Army vs. Navy Cook-Off, the centerpiece of the show's Military, Veterans, and Their Families Day, a full day of events honoring veterans for their service. The challenge was held on the PA Preferred Culinary Connection stage, which earlier in the week hosted Food Network chef Alex Guarnaschelli.

Scholarships of $3,500 were awarded to 28 young exhibitors from across the state. Youth market livestock exhibitors received a record $376,121 for their 423 animals in the junior livestock sale on Jan. 9.

In addition to the 42 livestock shows, 675 family living categories, and seven baking competitions, the approximately half-million visitors to the show experienced the state's agrarian heritage through antique tractors, culinary cookoffs, hands-on demonstrations, and celebrity competitions.

The Expo Hall's stage hosted a variety of Ag 101 talks and demonstrations from across the agriculture industry, and it showcased four centennial and bicentennial farm families. The ceremony also recognized 197 farms encompassing 16,236 acres that were safeguarded through the state's nation-leading farmland preservation program in 2017.

Vendors at the food court kept busy serving a wide variety of food and beverages, including roast beef sandwiches, walking tacos, pulled pork, maple cotton candy, ice cream, honey, breaded mushrooms, soups, salads, milkshakes, lemonade, and apple cider.


YMCA To Offer Winter Programs January 16, 2018

The Dover and York YMCA branches will accept registrations for several youth and teen programs. Programs include introductory lacrosse classes for youths ages 6 to 14, art classes for children ages 4 to 14, intramural volleyball for girls ages 11 to 15, a seventh- and eighth-grade basketball league that begins Thursday, Feb. 8 (Dover YMCA), and an indoor soccer league for youths ages 4 to 11.

For further details, readers may contact or 717-843-7884, ext. 263.


Activities Available At Senior Center January 16, 2018

The South Central York County Senior Center, 150 E. Main St., New Freedom, has posted its upcoming activities. A hot lunch is served at 11:20 a.m. each day.

Health and fitness activities will include isometric exercises at 9:15 a.m. daily, tai chi at 10:15 a.m. daily, Stretch Yoga at 9:15 a.m. on Mondays, Sweatin' to the Oldies at 10:15 a.m. on Mondays, HoopFit at 9:15 a.m. on Tuesdays, and line dancing at 10 a.m. on Wednesdays. The exercise equipment and the gym are also available for use every morning.

The senior center also offers an acrylic art class at 9:15 a.m. on Mondays, a watercolor art class at 9 a.m. on Tuesdays, ceramics at 9:15 a.m. on Wednesdays, Walking Through the Bible at 9 a.m. on Thursdays, and the Friends Together craft class at 9 a.m. on Fridays. The senior center offers a class on card making and blanket knotting, as well as a quilter's group.

Drivers are being sought for Meals on Wheels one morning each month. Openings are available for the routes in Glen Rock and Shrewsbury. Interested individuals may contact the senior center.

The senior center is planning a Caribbean cruise for February 2019. For details, readers may contact the center.

Members of the senior center have contributed family recipes to the center's cookbook. Interested individuals may purchase the cookbook by calling the center or stopping by. Center staff members are in the office on Mondays through Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

For more details about activities, readers may call the senior center at 717-235-6060.


Library Posts Reading Program January 16, 2018

Atglen Public Library, 413 Valley Ave., Atglen, has launched a new reading incentive modeled after the popular summer reading clubs at libraries across the state. Winter Reading Club began on Jan. 15 and will run through Friday, March 9.

Similar to summer reading, participants will write the number of minutes they read each day in their reading log and check in once a week at the library. Participants will receive a prize ticket for each weekly check-in and each time they attend a program. The drawing for the prize, a baby sloth toy that clings to one's finger, will take place on March 9 at 5 p.m.

Winter Reading Club is open to people of all ages, including toddlers and adults.

For further information, readers may contact 610-593-6848 or


Seminar Planned For Local Pastors January 16, 2018

Garden Spot Village, 433 S. Kinzer Ave., New Holland, will host a seminar for local pastors on Monday, Feb. 26, in the chapel. The half-day event is titled "Pastoring in the Best of Times and the Worst of Times." It will start with a complimentary breakfast at 8 a.m.

Dr. Leith Anderson, a pastor, speaker, author and leader, will be the speaker. He currently serves as president of the National Association of Evangelicals, headquartered in Washington, D.C., and is also pastor emeritus of Wooddale Church in Eden Prairie, Minn., where he served as senior pastor for 35 years.

In addition to breakfast, the seminar will feature two sessions, slated to start at 8:45 a.m. and conclude by noon.

During "Becoming the Leaders We Need to Be," Anderson will provide practical advice relating to the high expectations for pastors and ministry leaders and the frequent comparisons to other leaders.

During "Preaching and Teaching: The Practical Stuff," Anderson will provide ideas related to sermon approach, preparation and connections to the congregation.

The seminar, co-sponsored by Garden Spot Village and the Community Church at Garden Spot Village, is free to pastors and their spouses, but preregistration is required. To register, readers may call the Garden Spot Village resident services office at 717-355-6000 by Monday, Feb. 19.

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