I have to admit, I’ve been feeling old recently. I read last week that cartoon character Smokey Bear turned 75 last Friday, and was created in 1944 by the US Forest Service and the Ad Council to be the symbol used nationwide for forest fire prevention. Smokey first appeared on a poster pouring water on a campfire and a saying “Care will prevent 9 out of 10 forest fires. It wasn’t until 1947 the slogan “Only you can prevent forest fires” was coined, and the rest was history.
Age hasn’t caught up with Smokey, but I can’t say the same. Between my knees and Mother Nature playing games with my eyesight, I’ve never felt more challenged. This week, I start a series of gel shots in my knees to ease the joint pain. Stairs have become a real challenge in the past year. Last week, I received my first experimental treatment for Dry Macular Degeneration. Since there is no cure to slow the progression, I’m part of a nationwide research study to find a treatment to slow the disease. With one down, I have 23 months of treatments to go to complete the study. Did I mention the treatment requires the doctor to inject the experimental vaccine into my eye with a needle? It sounds worse than it is. I only feel a slight pressure in my eye after it’s heavily numbed with a gel. Along with the study comes a long list of monthly tests including blood, urine, and repetitive sight testing. In going over the contract to participate in the study, the pharmaceutical company requested I suspend being a sperm donor for the duration of the test. Betty and I found that to be an interesting request. I suspended those bank deposits for the next two years. I guess if the shots work it will all be worth it. This getting old thing is getting old.
Gettysburg Borough Manager Charles Gable tells me that he, Mayor Streeter, and Deb Adamik of Main Street Gettysburg had a successful meeting with the governor’s regional director last week. The conversation centered on issues the governor needed to know that were directly impacting the Borough of Gettysburg. The three areas of concern expressed by the borough were the increased damaging effects truck traffic was causing throughout the borough, the burden placed on the borough by the large number of tax exempt properties in the borough, and the need for the legislature to loosen borough code so the borough can be more creative with revenue generation, and the growing statewide ban issue of plastic bags.
Borough Manager Gable along with several other borough officials met with the PennDot District 8 executive and engineer recently about the Gettysburg Borough truck issue. There was lengthy discussion on the fact that PennDot data does not actually reflect the damage being done by the truck traffic to buildings in the town or its effect on visitation and tourism in the town. Both numbers of trucks and size were also part of the discussion. As a result, PennDot has agreed to conduct more traffic counts overnight and early morning, and the borough will provide a list of intersections it feels are of concern and should be monitored. Stay tuned.
It’s always a pleasure to check in with the president of the Adams County Economic Alliance, Robin Fitzpatrick, to find out about development activities in the county. She tells me the clock is ticking on a November deadline for the developer of the Gettysburg Station (REDDI site) to decide if he will move forward. Environmental studies have been underway to determine if any remedial work will need to be done on the property before or during any construction. Two parts of the parcel have been identified during the study, the underground tanks where the old gas station was located, and a Columbia Gas site that has since been sealed in concrete and cannot be disturbed. It’s a wait and see for now.
Get em while they’re hot! Robin tells me only two lots remain in the Adams County Industrial Park. Meanwhile, realtor Dave Sites is marketing lots on the Gateway side of the business park. The plan has always been to sell parcels near the hotels and movie theater because of the attraction to tourism, retail, and restaurant traffic.
Robin says her agency has been working closely with the Adams County Office of Planning and Development on the comprehensive plan to help identify areas in the county where development is desired, needed, and zoned. It will also identify areas of conservation and preservation. This should also provide a guide to where public funding is needed to make good projects happen. She says the Alliance is always working closely with state legislators. With that said, she added the county has been told the opportunity to add projects to the Commonwealth’s Capital Budget are likely to occur in the fall. Robin says she will be reaching out to municipalities with this information along with the county planning department and the board of commissioners. Finally, Robin tells be there is much interest in the business community to secure affordable housing for workers. This also includes transportation and a livable wage. She says the Alliance is but one of many partners in the community participating in the @ Home in Adams County Initiative, funded by the Adams County Community Foundation. Robin tells me this is a county-wide issue that needs to be addressed. For more information contact Robin at 717-334-0042, ext. 1 or Jenn Herfel at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for your time, Robin.
Let’s head Around Town:
It’s that time of year again for a picnic you won’t want to miss. This year the Buchanan Valley Picnic, at the old Jesuit Mission, will be held Saturday, Aug. 24 from noon until dusk at the grove adjacent to St. Ignatius Loyola Catholic Church, 1095 Church Road, just off Rt. 234 in Orrtanna. Bring the whole family to this delicious all-you-can-eat homemade Ham and Chicken Dinner served family style with all the “fixins” in the dining room pavilion. All vegetables served are locally grown. Tickets are just $11 dollars for adults, $5 dollars for children 6-12, and under 6 eat free. Sandwiches and chicken corn soup are available for those desiring a lighter fare. There will be bingo all day, the popular Fruit Wheel, grab bags, ball pitch and lots to do for young and old. Hear live music all day, so bring your lawn chair for a fresh peach sundae and music after dinner. For more information or directions call 717-677-8012.
Trinity United Church of Christ in Gettysburg is sponsoring a trip to the Flight 93 Memorial on Saturday, Oct. 12. The bus will depart the church at 60 East High St. at 7 a.m. and return at 4 p.m. The cost is $25 and participants are asked to bring their own lunch. For more information or to purchase a ticket, call the church office weekday mornings at 717-334-7266. Tickets must be purchased by Aug. 30.
Letters have been mailed to all Gettysburg businesses with information about this year’s Adams County Scavenger Hunts being held rain or shine Sept. 21 and 28. The first will be held for downtown businesses, and the second for businesses in the southern end of the borough. If you have not received a letter to be part of this fun event, contact event coordinator Brenda at 717-339-7057, or the Arts Council at 717-334-5006. More information will be coming for this great event shortly.
The ARC of Adams County will be presenting the Fabulous Hubcaps during their Annual Dinner, Dance, and Show Fundraiser Saturday, Sept. 21 at the Gettysburg Fire Hall on North Stratton St. in Gettysburg. Enjoy the great sounds of the 60s, 70s, and 80s along with a great dinner (optional) and dancing. Doors open at 6, dinner at 6:30, and the show begins at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $50 dollars for dinner and the show, and $30 for the show and dancing. Get your tickets now by calling 717-677-8487, or by ordering online at www.eventbrite.com/e/the-fabulous-hubcaps-fundraiser-tickets-620105542377. Enjoy this great evening of entertainment while supporting and enabling those with intellectual and developmental disabilities to live their dream of a more healthy and independent life. Call or go online to get your tickets for this wonderful event today.
If your non-profit club, group, or organization has an upcoming event, be sure to let me know about it. My contact information can be found at the end of the column. Please allow at least two weeks prior notice to the event and limit your announcement to six or eight lines.
In this age of political correctness, I realize I have been committing an egregious error for many decades. I love women! It began with my mom and has continued all my life. Because I love them I often address them with such terms as “Honey, Hon (It’s a Baltimore thing), Sweetie, and Ma’am”. I still open doors for them, compliment them on a new hairdo, or a good looking outfit. I respect their business accomplishments and work savvy. I’ve complimented them for so long, I can’t break the habit. Betty does tell me to not call our young female servers ma’am, she says it implies they are an older woman (I’m working on that one). It has nothing to do with sex, and everything to do with admiration and fondness. I caught myself thanking one of my interviews this week calling her “Sweetie,” but then apologized. She responded saying she wasn’t offended and was proud to be among the women I called “Sweetie”. Old habits are hard to break, so if we chat and I call you any of the above, know it is a term of fondness and I’m not out to offend you.
That does it for this week. Stay safe, and I’ll be back next Tuesday.