October 12th, 2011
PUNXSUTAWNEY â After months of work, a favorite shortcut to Route 310 for motorists and pedestrians â the Graffius Avenue Bridge â should reopen by Monday, Oct. 31.
Workers from contractor Francis J. Palo poured the final approach slab on the Wellington Heights side of the bridge this week, along with beginning roadway reconstruction on the Route 310 side, according to Kirby Starr, PennDOT project inspector in charge.
Starr said crews are preparing to pour curbs and sidewalks near Nekos. The sidewalk leading from the bridge to Route 310 will be poured.
PUNXSUTAWNEY â The Torrence Street road construction project is complete, but it could have looked much different if the ATA Transit Center would have been constructed differently on its North Findley Street lot.
Ideally, the Torrence Street intersection would have lined up in a T-intersection with Pine Street, but because the ATA project wasnât able to purchase the properties further down Findley Street, it could only be constructed on the property it acquired, Borough Manager Ben White said Monday.
PUNXSUTAWNEY â Just because local author Julie Branken has published a novel for adults doesnât mean that the bubble has burst on her series of âBubbleâ fantasy/adventure books for youngsters.
Instead, Branken describes âLove, Life or Diamondsâ as a 25-year work in progress.
âI would classify it as a love story, with fights, adventure and intrigue,â she said.
âItâs a girlsâ book,â she added.
PUNXSUTAWNEY â The group of eight to 10 youngsters, in their early teens, surrounded the smaller group of middle-school-aged children at Harmon Field a few weeks ago, and wouldnât let them leave the circle. But it wasnât a game.
The surrounding youngsters taunted the others with foul language and racial epithets. They told the surrounded youngsters that they didnât belong here, because they come from a family of mixed races, white and black.
Then it happened again, shortly after the childrenâs mother filed a report with police.
PUNXSUTAWNEY â Exactly what a violation of someoneâs civil rights is was explained during an assembly at the Punxsutawney Area Middle School Tuesday.
âThe practice or policy of discrimination ... foments domestic strife and unrest, threatens the rights and privileges of the inhabitants of the Commonwealth, and undermines the foundation of a free democratic state,â said Robert G. Flipping Jr., intake and education and community services supervisor for the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (PHRC).
PUNXSUTAWNEY â Students in the Punxsutawney Area School District meeting adequate yearly progress (AYP) on the PSSA exams is not a new development: They have been doing so for years, according to Richard Galluzzi, director of federal programs and curriculum.
"I'm so happy to announce this every year," he said Tuesday. "This town needs to be proud of its teachers and its students. They work hard and listen to the teachers."
Monday, Galluzzi told the Punxsutawney Area School Board that in 2010 and 2011, students achieved AYP across the board, and Tuesday, he detailed some of the results.
DUBOIS â The Punxsy girls' tennis squad took two teams to the District IX doubles championship tournament Tuesday in DuBois, and each team saw success, including a District IX championship for Punxsy's No. 1 doubles pair of Anna Monyak and Shaina Reddinger.
"Everything clicked for Anna and Shaina," Punxsy head coach Rose Graffius said Tuesday night after the victory. "They basically dominated the entire match."
PUNXSUTAWNEY â The Punxsy boys' cross country team hosted the DuBois Beavers Tuesday afternoon at Punxsutawney Area High School, and the Chucks edged out the Beavers 26-29 to earn a win on senior recognition day.
The seniors were recognized before the meet along with the girls' cross country team's seniors. For a photo from the senior recognition, see Thursday's edition of The Spirit.
PUNXSUTAWNEY â The Punxsy girls' cross country team dropped a close one in their final home meet of the season, falling 27-28 to the DuBois Beavers on Senior Night.
DuBois was able to take three of the top four places in the meet to drop the Lady Checks to 4-4 on the year.
"We figured it was going to be close, and it truly could have gone either way today," Punxsy coach George Wehrle said. "DuBois was stronger up front in getting three runners in before our second runner, but we rallied nicely to take the next four places and almost pull out the win.Â It was an exciting meet."
PUNXSUTAWNEY â All the little ghosts and goblins will be happy to know that Punxsutawney Borough Council approved a time and date for this yearâs Halloween parade: 6 p.m. Monday, Oct. 31, hosted by the Punxsutawney Fire Department.
The parade will line up near NAPA Auto Parts and once again travel down Union Street, which was determined by Punxsutawney Borough Police as a safer route than closing Mahoning Street â which is a state route â as had been done in the past.