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Sunday, March 8, 2009
Transformer trek to continue
SELINSGROVE – Route 204 north of Selinsgrove is open again, but the wide load project that closed it isn’t likely to be on its way again until Monday. Back on Thursday, the truck and trailer that was hauling a 125-ton transformer for PPL Utilities was unable to move after a weld gave away. Traffic had to be detoured around the breakdown site in Penn Township, Snyder County. Crews have since taken the transformer off the road; brought in a temporary trailer, and a heavy replacement trailer to continue the planned move to South Williamsport.
The unit was in storage at the PPL plant in Shamokin Dam and is replacing a similar unit that failed in South Williamsport. (Matt Farrand)
Balmy conditions set temp record
SELINSGROVE – Saturday’s high temperature was 72 degrees, as measured at the Penn Valley airport. . That breaks the previous record high of 65, set back in 1985. Numerous other weather records fell statewide Saturday. However, the previous record high temperature of 65 was the second lowest record high for March. The only other record highs during March, which are lower, are a tie, of 63 on March 1st, 1954 and 63 degrees on March 2nd, 1991, perhaps making the previous high temp for March 7th a vulnerable mark. The warmest day ever in March, was 87, set March 31st 1986.
Early Morning temperatures were in the 60’s in much of the region, but they are expected to fall as the day progresses.
Spring forward means check smoke detectors
HARRISBURG – Eastern Daylight Time is now being observed, as the official time jumped ahead an hour at 2:00 a.m. Sunday. Fire officials say the time change serves as a good reminder to check batteries in household smoke detectors, and make sure they’re working properly. State Fire Commissioner Edward Mann says smoke detectors should be on every level of your home, especially near sleeping areas, and are one of the most effective ways of preventing fire deaths. He also notes that if a smoke alarm is more than ten years old, it should be replaced even if it appears to be working properly. (Matt Farrand)
Chuck Erdman will run for a 4th term as Northumberland County’s Controller
SUNBURY – He started in 1998 and wants to run for a 4th term as Northumberland County Controller. Chuck Erdman says he wants to be controller for another four years despite the challenges we face with the slow economy. He says times have been tough in Northumberland County and they have to run a lot leaner than they used to. Erdman says the pressures that are affecting other businesses out there are also impacting the county and they have to look at each dollar spent to be fiscally responsible.
The controller is the county’s chief elected financial officer. Erdman is responsible for paying all of the county’s bills, auditing certain departments in the county and accounting for the financial transactions of the county. So far, the republican incumbent is the only one to announce their intentions for controller.
Erdman is a graduate of Line Mountain High School and Washington and Lee University. He lives in Point Township with his wife Stacy and their three children. He is treasurer of Pineknotter Days, a member of the board of directors at the YMCA and a government affairs committee member of the Greater Susquehanna Valley Chamber of Commerce. (Ali Stevens)
Basement fire leaves family homeless
MAHONING TWP – A fire in Mahoning Township, Montour County has left a family homeless. The blaze in the basement of a home along Schoolhouse Road began around 9:30 Friday evening. The home is owned by Edward and Roberta Shaffer. No injuries were reported. Crews were able to contain the fire to the basement, where smoke, heat and water damage is reported. A State Police Fire Marshal has been called to investigate the cause of the fire. Volunteers from East End, Danville, Southside and Catawissa Fire Companies responded to the scene.
Roundtable previews Monday night’s Cyberbullying seminar in Selinsgrove
SUNBURY – Our Roundtable this weekend preview’s this Monday’s night’s Cyberbullying seminar in Selinsgrove. The interview features Jenny Ormsby—a school psychologist in the Selinsgrove Area School District, Chuck Longwell—the Assistant Principal at the Selinsgrove high school, as well as guidance counselors Judy Fatchaline, Scott Smolleck and Karen Thompson.
The seminar Monday begins is from 6p.m. to 7:30p.m. at the Selinsgrove Area Middle School Auditorium and will feature a pediatric psychologist, a state trooper as well as several other experts in this field. The goal is to acquaint parents with the prevalence of, and harmful effects from sending cruel text messages or emails, or misusing other Internet communication.
You can hear our Roundtable Sunday on: Eagle 107 (107.3FM) at 6a.m, 100.9, The Valley, at 6a.m., WKOK at 9a.m. Talkradio 1380 WMLP, 11a.m., 94KX at 11p.m., And anytime, at www.wkok.com
Geisinger breaking into ‘new media’
DANVILLE – YouTube, Facebook and Wikis are just a few new words in the 21st century, and Rob Snyder says even hospitals have to learn the slang and the technology. Snyder works at Geisinger Medical Center as the New Media Manager. His job is to make the hospital’s website more useful and drive more traffic to it.
Snyder says they are working on utilizing YouTube, improving Geisinger’s appearance on search engines and launching new blogs. Snyder says the Children’s Miracle Center recently went online with a new blog. Overall, he says Geisinger’s goal is to use as many outlets as possible to leverage interaction between patients and physicians.
“Thoroughly Modern” auditorium hosts spring musical
LEWISBURG – When “Thoroughly Modern Millie” opens Thursday at Lewisburg Area High School, it’ll be staged in an auditorium that’s undergone some big improvements, thanks to some LAHS alums. Alumni Association and Foundation President Dave Powell says his group’s raised thousands of dollars to pay for changes at the auditorium that parents and performers alike should notice. They include a new stage, new curtains and improved lighting.
Powell says they hope to raise an additional $37,000 dollars for improvements to the audio system.
Treasurer Barbara Baylor notes that use of the room is not limited to high school students, including use during the summer when Wednesday night concerts in Hufnagle Park need to be moved due to rain. She says the foundation’s biggest fundraiser is a twice a year spaghetti supper on dates that should be easy to remember. There’s one on primary day and another on the day of the general election.
The event proves to be popular, and Baylor notes the reason behind its success is the tasty “alumni sauce.” If you’re planning ahead, Primary Day is May 19th and the spaghetti supper is from 5:00 pm. to 7:00 p.m. at the Donald Eichorn Middle School. (Matt Farrand)
Wine and entertainment featured at area wineries this month
SUNBURY – Now that March has arrived, so has the annual Susquehanna Heartland Wine Trail.
Every weekend in March, you can visit and area winery as part of the trail. Tim Kinsey of Spy Glass Ridge Winery in Sunbury says each of the participating wineries will have features to enjoy on Saturday and Sunday. Kinsey says the wineries participating in the wine trail include Benigna’s Creek of Klingerstown, Brook mere of Belleville, Shade Mountain of Middleburg, Hunter’s Valley of Liverpool, Mount Nittany Vineyard of Centre Hall and Spy Glass Ridge of Sunbury.
Kinsey says they had about 100 people come out last weekend to enjoy food, live music and wine tasting. Tickets are just $30.00 a couple and you can visit all of the wineries for the entire month using the same ticket. To learn more about all of the events planned at each winery during the month of March, you can go to the website www.pawinetrail.com. (Ali Stevens)
Latest Pennsylvania news, sports, business and entertainment:
LANCASTER, Pa. (AP) - Authorities in southeastern Pennsylvania say a man searching the Susquehanna River for the body of his missing father found the man's body - but not before he also found the body of a missing woman. Officials in Lancaster County say the body of 62-year-old Kenneth Kauffman was found in the river shortly after 4 p.m. Saturday. The York County businessman had been missing since December. But Manor Township police Sgt. James Alexander says the searcher found a woman's body earlier in the afternoon about six or seven miles upriver on the York County side of the river. Authorities say there were no signs of foul play and they do not believe the two cases were related. The Lancaster County coroner's office says autopsies on the bodies will be done Monday.
PITTSBURGH (AP) - A World War II veteran from western Pennsylvania has received his Purple Heart after 65 years. Eighty-six-year-old David Rohm got his medal during a ceremony Saturday at the 171st Air Refueling Wing in Coraopolis. His son, Col. Robi Rohm, watched via video hookup from Afghanistan, where he is stationed with the Army. The elder Rohm was injured after bailing out of his crippled B-17 on March 8, 1944. He broke his pelvis upon landing and was captured by German forces. He spent the next 14 months in prison camps. He had not received the Purple Heart since then because of a lack of medical documentation. But two years ago, he petitioned the Air Force Review Board; after providing a personal account of his injury, his request was granted in December.
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Authorities have issued a bench warrant for a Philadelphia man who allegedly slipped out of a federal courthouse as he was about to be sentenced on identity theft and fraud charges. Thirty-year-old Charles McLaurin pleaded guilty in December and had been free under house arrest. He was facing 10 years in federal prison. U.S. District Judge Bruce Kauffman had briefly recessed court and returned to his chambers to weigh the sentence Thursday. McLaurin left the defense table to talk with his girlfriend. McLaurin's attorney, Michael Graves, says McLaurin and his girlfriend then left the courtroom. His girlfriend came back alone. Authorities say McLaurin and others used stolen identities to make purchases from retailers and then returned the merchandise for cash. Investigators say the fraud exceeded $100,000.
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - President Barack Obama is to give the keynote address at the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce legislative conference in Washington. The president's appearance was announced late Friday night in Philadelphia, where a spokeswoman for the Latino business group said she had just gotten permission from the White House to do so. Obama is to speak at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday to the conference held at the Marriott Metro Center.
EASTON, Pa. (AP) - An eastern Pennsylvania woman will spend at least a month behind bars for leaving her newborn son in a toilet. Twenty-eight-year-old Melissa Regalis was sentenced Friday to one month to one year in Northampton County Prison after pleading guilty to reckless endangerment. Regalis called 911 after giving birth in a bathroom, but police say she refused the dispatcher's instruction to remove the baby from the water. Police say the child's father found the infant sitting in an upright position in the toilet bowl. The baby was treated for hypothermia and an infection. Regalis asked for probation, but a prosecutor argued prison would "scare her into taking care of her babies" if she has any more. Regalis also has an 8-year-old daughter. Her attorney says Regalis' sister has agreed to adopt the now-18-month-old boy.
ERIE, Pa. (AP) - Wegmans supermarkets in Erie have begun selling beer following a Commonwealth Court ruling that says they may do so. The supermarket chain has two locations in Erie and both began selling beer Friday. Commonwealth Court ruled Feb. 23 that the cafes attached to the food stores by an interior passageway are restaurants. That meant they were eligible for licenses to sell take-out beer. A lawyer for beer distributors said at the time of the ruling that he would appeal to the state Supreme Court.
ALTOONA, Pa. (AP) - A western Pennsylvania man has been charged with killing an Altoona woman whose body was found in her car trunk near the man's house. Nineteen- year-old Sean Louis Allen, of Hollidaysburg, was charged with homicide Thursday in the death of 20-year-old Margo Davis, 20. He's being held in the Blair County Prison. Police investigating a missing person report found Davis' body early Wednesday morning. Police say she had a severe skull injury. Prosecutors say the two were acquaintances, but didn't elaborate. Davis was last seen about 1 a.m. Tuesday and had sent a text message to her brother that she was visiting Allen. Police say they recovered Davis' cell phone, a bloody towel and a smashed flashlight in a trash bag in Allen's bedroom.
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
Here are the winning numbers drawn Saturday by the Pennsylvania State Lottery:
Daily Number 9-0-9
Big 4 4-4-0-9
The winning numbers drawn Saturday night in Powerball are:21-27-28-56-59 Powerball: 21
Estimated jackpot: $25 million. Power Play: 2
Daily Number 0-9-7
Big 4 9-3-8-6
Treasure Hunt 8-10-13-17-29
The winning numbers drawn Saturday in the "Pennsylvania Cash 5" game were 03-12-19-23-28.
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
Dutch police recover paintings stolen 22 years ago
THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) - Dutch police have recovered eight valuable paintings, including works by Renoir and Pissaro, 22 years after they were stolen from a gallery. Prosecutors say three suspects have been arrested – a 45-year-old German man who lives in Dubai, his 62-year-old mother and a 66-year-old man. Their identities have not been released. The paintings were stolen from the Noortman gallery in the southern city of Maastricht in 1987. The National Prosecutors Office said in a statement posted on its Web site that police tracked down the works after an attempt was made to sell them to the insurance company that paid out about EU 2.3 million for the paintings after the theft.
Mourners pay tribute to radio legend Paul Harvey
CHICAGO (AP) - About 200 family members and mourners have gathered at the funeral of radio legend Paul Harvey in Chicago. The broadcaster's son, Paul Harvey Jr., quoted his father's send-off for President Franklin Roosevelt during the service Saturday at the Fourth Presbyterian Church. Harvey reiterated his father's words: "A great tree has fallen." Paul Harvey died March 1 at his winter home in Phoenix, almost a year after his wife of nearly 68 years died. He was 90. He had been heard nationally since 1951, when he launched his "News and Comment" for ABC Radio Networks from Chicago. He received the presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005.
Women’s College Basketball, Patriot League Tournament:
Navy 53, Bucknell 51
PIAA Class AAA Girls Basketball
Bangor 36, Milton 34
Allentown CC 50, Selinsgrove 26
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)