Scranton Parks Slated For $400,000 Boost From Community Development Block Grants And State Funds

Downtown Scranton, looking East from West Moun...

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Scranton Mayor Chris Doherty is a man on a mission in 2011.  His goal is to make improvements at two existing city parks and create a new pocket park.  Doherty hopes to use Community Development Block Grants and a $50,000 state grant from the governor’s office, which was verbally committed to by Ed Rendell.

1700 Perry Avenue was formerly the site of a school and is now a vacant lot.  Doherty thinks this site would be ideal for a pocket park.  Scranton City Council eliminated funding for the proposed park from the 2011 budget.  Undeterred, Doherty is seeking other funding as listed above and additional grants through Lowe’s, Home Depot and Kaboom.  The mayor estimates he needs $75,000 to complete the North Scranton pocket park, which will feature a swing set, playground area and bike path which will also include a small BMX trick park.  This vacant lot is a blighted property.  Creating the park will clean up blight, add more recreation and improve property values in the neighborhood.

The Clover Field Park is next on the agenda.  The Mayor hopes to add a playground area to a section of the park.  The playground area would serve neighborhood children and the children who take part in the West Side Jets junior football program. The West Side Jets use the park as their home base.  The cost for these improvements will be $135,000 and funded through the Community Development Block Grant program.

The third project will impact the Novembrino swim complex, 10th Avenue, also on Scranton’s West Side.  The deep water pool is going to be eliminated and a splash park added in its place.  Adding a splash park eliminates the need for lifeguards and cuts down on the city’s water bill.  The splash park is expected to cost $183,000.  The city is looking at their pools, which are all around 40 years old.

Doherty said “We have an obligation to reinvest in neighborhoods, stabilize them and maintain property values.”  Mr. Mayor, we could not agree more!

Muhlenberg College Professor Wins Major National Award

ALLENTOWN, Pa. – (January 6, 2011) — Charles O. Anderson, associate professor of dance and director of the African-American Studies program at Muhlenberg College, has been named one of 12 “Emerging Scholars” for 2011.  The scholars are chosen by and profiled in Diverse magazine.

In its Jan. 6 edition, Diverse profiles 12 “under 40” scholars from around the country who are making their mark in the academy through teaching, research and service. These outstanding scholars serve as an inspiration to both students and colleagues.

Anderson, a native of Richmond, Va., holds a B.A. in performance and choreography from Cornell University, and an M.F.A. with honors from Temple University. Over the past 10 years, his choreography has been presented through such venues as Mulberry Street Theatre, Danspace at St. Mark’s Church, the Philadelphia Fringe Festival, Danceboom! at the Wilma Theatre, WAX Performance Space and Here Arts Center among others.

He has performed in the companies of such noted choreographers as Ronald K. Brown, Sean Curran, Mark Dendy, Talley Beatty and Miguel Guttierez among others. Charles’ choreography has been funded by Dance Advance, The Community Education Center’s New Edge Residency, the Susan Hess Choreographer’s Project and The Puffin Foundation.

Anderson continues to enjoy a successful career as choreographer, performer and artistic director of his Philadelphia based dance company, dance theatre X. He was recently awarded a Dance Advance Grant (an organization sponsored by Pew Charitible Trusts) to collaborate with South African choreographer Vincent Mantsoe.
 
Diverse, then Black Issues In Higher Education, first published its “Emerging Scholars” edition in 2002. It has remained one of the magazine’s most popular editions since its inception. Diverse  editors selects honorees from a pool of candidates recommended by various scholars, department chairs, university public information officers, and others.
 
Each scholar is selected based on research, educational background, publishing record, teaching record, competitiveness of field of study, and uniqueness of field of study.

The “Emerging Scholars” for 2011 are:

Dr. Terrell Strayhorn, associate professor of higher education, The Ohio State University
Dr. Rochelle Parks-Yancy, associate business professor, Texas Southern
Charles O. Anderson, associate professor of dance and director of the African-American studies program at Muhlenberg College.
Dr. Chekesha Liddell, associate professor of materials science and engineering, Cornell University.
Dr. Wayne Alix Ian Frederick, associate professor, Howard University Medical School, specializes in surgical oncology.
Dr. Gina Núñez-Mchiri, an assistant professor of Cultural Anthropology in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at UT El Paso
Dr. Federico Ardila, assistant professor of mathematics at San Francisco State University,
Dr. Victoria DeFrancesco Soto, Assistant Professor of Political Science, Northwestern University;
Dr. Carlos D. Bustamante, a population geneticist at Stanford University
Dr. Ashlesh Murthy, research assistant professor of biology, University of Texas-San Antonio
Yiyun Li, an associate professor of English, at the University of California at Davis
Sarah Deer, Assistant Professor, William Mitchell College of Law in Minnesota.