PUNXSUTAWNEY â In what has become a Punxsy holiday tradition â right up there with snowflake lights and the Barclay Square Christmas tree â local residentsâ donations again topped those from last year during the Make-A-Wish Foundationâs annual âLight Up a Childâs Lifeâ campaign.
As of early Friday evening, the tally for the week-long 2011 campaign was $79,447.86, topping the 2010 total of $73,285.
ANITA â Just ask Chris Moore, because thanks to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, kids facing battles similar to his should be careful what they wish for.
After Chris, who as been diagnosed with muscular dystrophy, and his family learned that he was eligible for a wish, his mother, Tammy, brought the paperwork to Wish Assistant Polly Mills.
Millsâ question to the family was, when they would like to see Chrisâ wish fulfilled.
âI didnât realize that was how it worked,â Tammy said. âI thought it had to be approved by a board of some kind.â
PUNXSUTAWNEY â The Route 36 Rivalry has seen its share of close games in every sport the schools participate in for years, and the latest chapter â Friday's boys' basketball game between the Chucks and the Raiders â was no disappointment, as Punxsy defeated Brookville 45-40 behind 24 points from Daniel Triponey and a three-pointer from Alex Fedigan that put the Chucks up for good with 13 seconds left.
PUNXSUTAWNEY â Every NASCAR-loving youngster dreams of strapping into a car and driving around the turns of Daytona International Speedway when he or she grows up. One local 18-year old is grown up, and is going to have the chance to live out that dream. Well, sort of.
2011 PAHS graduate Darren Pifer has been driving a race car since he was six years old, but the type of car he drives runs on dirt, not pavement like Daytona International.
Although it has a few less horsepower than the Sprint Cup cars, that doesn't mean there's not an element of danger and excitement in his sport.
BROOKVILLE â League play opened for the Lady Chucks Thursday night against Brookville, but the young squad struggled against a strong opponent and fell 63-45.
Despite losing in a rival game, Punxsy head coach Randy Reitz said there are some positives he saw in his team's play.
"They worked hard for 32 minutes, and each game, we are improving," Reitz said. "I thought this was the best game we played up to date, but we played a good basketball team tonight."
PUNXSUTAWNEY â The seventh- and eighth-grade boys' basketball teams kicked off their seasons this week with a pair of games each â Monday against DuBois Central Catholic and Wednesday against Brockway â and so far, there is no shortage of close games at the junior high level.
One of those close games came Monday in the eighth-graders home opener against DuBois Central Catholic, when the Chucks earned a come-from-behind 34-30 victory over the Cardinals.
PUNXSUTAWNEY â While Punxsy's varsity wrestling squad opened its season Wednesday night against the Marion Center Stingers, the junior high team has been hard at work with two matches already in the books and a tournament under its belt heading into Wednes-day's match against the Stingers, and Punxsy looked polished in its second home meet, earning a 54-39 victory Wednesday in Punxsutawney.
PUNXSUTAWNEY â For Dan Prutznal, it can be tough being a Green Bay Packers fan in Steelers Country.
âLast week, someone brought in a copy of Sports Illustrated, and in the cafeteria, where I eat lunch with the kids, I held it up,â showing a piece about the Packers, he said. âThe kids were just hollering: âBoo, Packers,â âI donât like the Packers.â Every time they see me ... itâs all in good fun.â
PUNXSUTAWNEY â In times of tragedy, Drinda and Brian Smith believe it is good for people to get together and interact with others to begin the healing process.
A little over a month has gone by since the tragic passings of Joel Riggleman â Drinda and Brian's son â Dylan "Shorty" Behrendt and Sean McConnaughey in a single-vehicle accident Nov. 12 in Armstrong County.
Alexander Simon Dubensky, 81, of DeLancey died Wednesday, Dec. 14, 2011, at Punxsutawney Area Hospital.
He was born March 7, 1930, in DeLancey, a son of the late Michael L. and Mary (Quashnock) Dubensky.
He was a member of Ss. Peter & Paul Byzantine Church in Punxsutawney.
April 18, 1959, he married the former Mary Ellen Zelman, who preceded him in death Aug. 10, 1993.
Mr. Dubensky was a U.S. Army veteran and served his country during the Korean conflict.
He worked as a machinist for Star Iron Works for more than 30 years.