Sustainability: Pottstown Eyes Environmental Balance

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN, PA – As any farmer can tell you, use any resource faster than it can be replaced — be it wood, water, money or patience — and eventually it will run out.

To put it simply, it’s not sustainable.

And where does that leave those who come after you?

Recognizing a responsibility to maintain a sustainable balance and to ensure resources are available to future generations, Pottstown may soon become the third municipality in Montgomery County to adopt a “sustainability plan.”

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20141012/sustainability-pottstown-eyes-environmental-balance

The Hill School, Borough, And Pottstown School District Plan Second Pottstown CARES Clean-Up Event

POTTSTOWN, PA –About 700 volunteers from the Borough of Pottstown, The Hill School, the
Pottstown School District,and other organizations will again combine forces to demonstrate their
commitment to our hometown during the second annual CARES clean-up event to be held on Friday,
October 24, from 8:30 a.m. until noon. Rain date will be Monday, October 27.

Click here to view (and share) a short documentary created by Hill School student Jake Trombley
(Douglassville, Pa.) about last year’s CARES project and its impact on Pottstown.
(http://www.thehill.org/CARESvideo)

The clean-up will occur in a targeted area of Pottstown, from High Street north to Beech Street,
and Manatawny Street east to Edgewood Street.

All 515 Hill School students as well as Hill faculty and staff; at least 50 Pottstown High School students
and numerous faculty members; and many Borough workers and officials will be dispersed to weed,
pick up trash, and complete other “spruce up” tasks in public spaces in the core downtown area. In
addition, about a dozen volunteers from the Montgomery County Community College as well as
additional individuals from other community businesses and organizations will join the students and
other workers on their clean-up teams.

E-waste collector ReduxTech will be on hand to accept any old items that had electricity running
through them for recycling. The collection truck will be located in The Hill School Center For The
Arts parking lot off Beech Street from 9 a.m. to noon on October 24.

In addition, the Pottstown School District is running a blood drive in the High School gymnasium
from 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Individuals interested in making a donation at the Pottstown High School
on October 24 may send an email to Pottstown faculty member Mark Agnew at
magnew@pottstownsd.org. Drop-in blood donations are also welcomed.

The CARES organizers ask that Pottstown area residents support our community by also
stopping by the Pottstown Cluster of Religious Communities at 57 North Franklin Street and
donating nonperishable food, laundry detergent, toiletries, warm clothing, and other items that will be
greatly appreciated by area families in need at this time. The Cluster will be accepting donations on the
CARES day (October 24) from 9 a.m. to noon.

Numerous organizations have contributed funding, tools, supplies, or other support to the CARES
endeavor. The generosity of the United Way and Home Depot provided funding for a Pottstown
CARES Community Tool Share Shed from which community individuals and organizations may
borrow tools. Interested parties should contact Katie Scanlan, High Meadows Foundation Sustainability
Chair at The Hill School, at kscanlan@thehill.org or 610-705-7277. CARES asks that tool borrowers
contribute one additional rake, shovel, or broom for each tool used and returned in order to helpexpand
the tool share program.

Organizations that wish to make additional donations of time, materials, or funding toward
CARES should contact Scanlan at the email address or phone number above; take donations of work
gloves, trash and leaf bags, or tools to Borough Hall at 100 E. High Street; or email
PottstownCARES@pottstown.org with suggestions or questions.

The massive CARES day volunteer crew will assemble under Hill’s former hockey rink roof at
8:30 a.m. on October 24 to receive instructions and participate in a group photo. All volunteers are
asked to wear blue – a “school color” shared by The Hill, the Pottstown School District, and the
Borough. Pre-organized teams then will disperse to their designated project areas until about noon,
when they will return to Hill for a picnic buffet lunch prepared by Sodexo, Hill’s food service provider.
Sodexo is generously donating the meals for all volunteers as well as Hill students and personnel.

The initial, joint CARES (Community, Awareness, Responsibility, Empowerment, and Sustainability)
endeavor was conceived in the spring of 2013 during conversations between Borough Manager Mark
Flanders, Pottstown School Superintendent Dr. Jeff Sparagana, and Hill School Headmaster Zachary
Lehman. The three leaders envisioned a collaborative project that would help to “spruce up” a
designated area in the core of Pottstown while boosting community pride. The CARES planning team
hopes these events will motivate Pottstown residents to engage in ongoing clean-ups of their own in
their immediate neighborhoods.

CARES project organizers wish to give special thanks to the Pottstown Police Department and
Emergency Services organizations and the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department for their support.

Pottstown Schools’ Performance Scores Slip Amid Year Of Change

POTTSTOWN, PA  Although they have not yet been released by the state, officials have circulated a preliminary peak at the next set of school profile scores and say they reflect the many changes which have occurred in the district in the last year.

The numbers released by the district show that as a district, the composite overall score slipped less than a point from the 2012-2013 school year — from 75.15 to 74.55

But the individual schools saw some pretty big jumps — Barth Elementary School’s score improved slightly and the score at Lincoln Elementary School jumped by nearly 20 points.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20141004/pottstown-schools-performance-scores-slip-amid-year-of-change

Free Diabetes Program Comes To Pottstown Library Starting Today

Pottstown, PA – free informational diabetes program will be offered in Pottstown starting today.

The program is for adults diagnosed with diabetes and their families. Participants will attend two-hour classes that include discussions about diabetes, exercise and cooking demonstrations.

The free program called “Dining with Diabetes” will be offered every Friday in October starting with an informational and registration session today. The classes will be taught at the Pottstown Regional Public Library from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The library is located at 500 E. High St.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/lifestyle/20141002/free-diabetes-program-comes-to-pottstown-library-starting-today

Newest Pottstown School Board Member Is Homegrown

POTTSTOWN — To say that the Pottstown School Board’s newest member is a hometown booster would be a bit of an understatement.

Chosen from among four other candidates last week, Katina Bearden took the oath of office Thursday night and will complete the year left in the term of former board vice president Dennis Wausnock who died last month.

Born in Pottstown, educated in Pottstown, living in Pottstown and raising her family in Pottstown, you might say Bearden is fond of the place.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140919/katina-bearden-becomes-newest-pottstown-school-board-member

‘Save the Lights’ Yard Signs Available

‘Save the Lights’ yard signs will be available for $25 each at ALL Saturday afternoon Pottstown HS [football] home games. CASH or CHECK. Note: If paying by check, checks need to be ONLY made payable to: “The Pottstown School District / Save the Lights” [Stop-by and buy one for a worthy cause… for Friday night games again!!

savethelightsjpeg

 

Pottstown Halloween Parade Receives Two $1,000 Donations In As Many Days

POTTSTOWN, PA — In this town, the axiom is simple, ask and you will receive.

Just two days after announcing another $4,000 is needed to put on the Pottstown Halloween Parade, $2,600 in donations and pledges have been received.

The parade — co-sponsored by the Pottstown Rotary Club, AMBUCS and the Pottstown Parks and Recreation Department — requires about $4,700 to stage each year, primarily to pay the costs of police protection.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140917/pottstown-halloween-parade-receives-two-1000-donations-in-as-many-days

Tourism Touted As Means To Rejuvenate Pottstown

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN — “Tourism” might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you say “Pottstown,” but as far as Bill Fitzgerald is concerned, that won’t be true for long.

Fitzgerald is the president of the newly reconstituted Valley Forge Tourism and Convention Board and he was in town last week to talk to Pottstown Borough Council about how his organization can help promote what Pottstown has to offer.

Tourism is on the upswing in Montgomery County, Fitzgerald said, and Pottstown is well-positioned to benefit from that trend, Fitzgerald said.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140908/tourism-touted-as-means-to-rejuvenate-pottstown

Pottstown Resident Miffed By Lack Of ‘Mercury’ Front Page Coverage For Pottstown High School Football Team’s Win

Pottstown Borough Hall

Pottstown Borough Hall

Editor’s Note:  We saw this on Facebook and feel it needs to be shared with the wider community.  We understand and share this parent’s concern about the promotion of Pottstown and the Pottstown School District.  In our humble opinion, Pottstown and Pottstown School District news should always take priority in the local paper.  Far more disturbing is the son’s comment that “nobody cares about Pottstown”.  How sad is this and what does it say about the prevailing attitude of Pottstonians if this despair has crept all the way down the ladder to school age children?  At times this appears to be the prevailing attitude of the leadership, both paid and elected.  This issue needs some serious discussion by the “powers that be” and this cycle of “nobody cares” needs to end.  How will Pottstown ever recover with a defeatist attitude! Apparently, this attitude has been picked up on by “the rest of the world” and might be why articles like the recent one in the Philadelphia Inquirer get published.

I found myself very annoyed this morning.  I went and bought my local HOMETOWN newspaper which is operated and ran in Pottstown.  I looked on the front page and to my surprise and anger there is nothing about the Pottstown High School football team winning yesterday, but yet we put the Perk Valley vs. Methacton score on the front page.  Now please don’t think that I am putting down the other schools, but to not have the school that resides where your paper is published on the front page was to be quite frank, appalling.  My son, who happens to play for the Trojans, told me “what is the big deal Dad, no one cares about Pottstown”.  News Alert: I care and there are people out there that do care.  I’m sure there are people that agree with him but I am not one of them.  I am a former grad who still supports his local team.  How do we expect to move forward in this school district when our students have the mentality of no one cares about us, no big deal?  Our town needs help and I just think that a putting some good news about the LOCAL KIDS would go a long way in changing people ‘s attitude.   Rob Bertoti

Town By Town: In Pottstown, Plenty Of Sellers, Few Buyers

Pottstown Borough Hall

Pottstown Borough Hall

Editor’s note:  It’s pretty freakin’ sad when the Philadelphia Inquirer has to write up something like this about Pottstown.  Everybody knows why this situation exists, except for the do nothing Borough Council who are off in Lala Land taking a group cruise down the river Denial! What an embarrassing write up and very damning because of the enormous readership of this MAJOR MARKET publication!!!!!  Now that a big city newspaper has pointed out the same issues we bloggers have been harping on for years, maybe you all will be shamed into doing something. 

Trends in local housing supply and demand aren’t working in Pottstown’s favor right now. In a word, the market is troubled.

Andrew Himes, an agent with Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Fox & Roach Realtors in Collegeville, said the borough “is one of the few places that hasn’t made any kind of a comeback.”

Though just about every market in the eight-county Philadelphia region has a shortage of supply, Pottstown’s problem is it has 300 houses for sale and very little demand, Himes says.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/classifieds/real_estate/town-by-town/20140831_Town_By_Town_.html#0CJjWTr05jzmHLlJ.99

Kefer Named New Pottstown School Board VP

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN — The school board elected Andrew Kefer as its new vice president Monday night, filling the post left vacant by the Aug. 19 death of Dennis Wausnock .

But Kefer’s election did not happen without some objections.

Hylton argued Monday, “Since we knew we would need a vice president, it would have been appropriate to bring this up for discussion Thursday since (Ron) Williams had already indicated he would not be at tonight’s meeting.”

Hylton proposed tabling the motion, noting that solicitor Stephen Kalis had confirmed there is no legal requirement that a vice president be appointed immediately.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140826/kefer-named-new-pottstown-school-board-vp

Delays In Rupert Elementary School Construction Frustrate Pottstown School Board

POTTSTOWN — As recently as Aug. 14, Pottstown School Board members were assured by district administrators and construction consultants that renovation and expansion of Rupert Elementary School was on schedule for the opening of school on Sept. 2.

But just four days later, the administration announced that the school would not be ready on timeand students and staff would begin school in the former Edgewood Elementary School at 920 Morris St.

Three days after that announcement, frustrated school board members levied criticism at both the planning and execution of the project.

“To say I am disappointed in the efforts of the contractor is an understatement,” board member Ron Williams said.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140822/delays-in-rupert-elementary-school-construction-frustrate-pottstown-school-board

Pottstown School Board Vice President Dennis Wausnock Dies At 77

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN — The word most spoken by those reflecting on Tuesday’s death of longtime public official Dennis Wausnock, who served in public offices in the borough for more than 20 years, was “dedicated.”

Wausnock, 77, died Tuesday at Pottstown Memorial Medical Center after a long battle with congestive heart failure.

A U.S. Air Force veteran of the Korean War, Wausnock’s public service included 16 years on the Pottstown Borough Council, where he served as both vice president and president.

He was three years into his second four-year term on the Pottstown School Board, also serving as vice president, when he passed away.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140820/pottstown-school-board-vice-president-dennis-wausnock-dies-at-77

Rupert Won’t Be Ready In Time For First Day Of School

Editor’s note:  Many thanks to Tom Hylton for another boondoggle.

POTTSTOWN — When the newly renovated elementary schools open for the first day of school Sept. 2, Rupert Elementary School will not be one of them.

In a letter sent home to parents Monday afternoon, Superintendent Jeff Sparagana said the Rupert school year will begin in the same place it was held last school year, the former Edgewood Elementary School at 920 Morris St.

“We will keep you apprised of the progress as the Rupert School renovation comes to conclusion and notify you in advance of the plan for the return to 1230 South St.,” Sparagana wrote to parents.

“We apologize for any inconvenience this communication causes as we look forward to a great school year with the anticipation of moving back to the newly renovated Rupert School,” Sparagana wrote.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140818/rupert-elementary-wont-be-ready-in-time-for-first-day-of-school-in-pottstown

Kids Dice Vegetables For Healthy Pizzas And Learn About Nutrition

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN — Kid chefs learned that a healthy twist on a traditionally baked dish was surprisingly tasty.

Children of the Oliviet Boys and Girls Club made no-bake pizzas with garden fresh vegetables last week at the Ricketts Community Center.

The youth cooking class is part of a summer nutritional program at the club.

Kristin Robinson, nutrition major at the University of Pittsburgh, is working alongside MOSAIC garden manager Laura Washington this summer to teach the kids about healthy eating.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/lifestyle/20140721/kids-dice-vegetables-for-healthy-pizzas-and-learn-about-nutrition

Eat Fresh At Saturday’s MOSAIC Community Garden Party In Pottstown

teacher-lauraPOTTSTOWN, PA — The local community garden will show how easy vegetable crops can go from the ground to the dining table.

The MOSAIC Land Trust is hosting a garden party at their new 615 Chestnut St. community garden on Saturday from 2 to 4 p.m.

The party will include music, resources on healthy living and fresh vegetables from the garden.

“We are going to do a healthy garden to grill event,” said Laura Washington, garden manager.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/lifestyle/20140716/eat-fresh-at-saturdays-community-garden-party-in-pottstown

Howard Brown Backs Growing Stop The Violence Campaign In Pottstown

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

POTTSTOWN, PA — A local hoops legend lent his support Monday night to the anti-violence movement that began in the borough a little more than a month ago.

“When I heard about this, it’s just a natural thing for me to want to be involved in some capacity,” said Howard Brown, the Pottstown grad who went on to play basketball at Villanova and internationally. “We’re actually drumming up a lot of residents and former residents to just not only bring awareness but to talk about some of the issues that we do have, to change.”

With a driving rain cancelling plans for a full march, the Stop the Violence campaign moved indoors at the Ricketts Center, where players in the Olivet Boys and Girls Club’s summer basketball league gathered together between games to pose for a picture and show their support of the movement.

A Maryland resident now, Brown is in town for a combine for his basketball agency, iBall United, which will be held over the weekend both in Valley Forge and at The Hill School.

Read more: http://www.pottsmerc.com/general-news/20140714/howard-brown-backs-growing-stop-the-violence-campaign-in-pottstown