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Volunteers are already hard at work preparing for the the St. Marys Area Christmas Day Dinner, an annual event that has been bringing together area residents to celebrate the holiday for 16 years.
Volunteer Vada Liptak founded the event with her friend and former St. Marys resident Shirley Alexander, and continues to be deeply involved in the project. She said the gathering is sponsored by the community, for the community, for people who would otherwise be alone for Christmas dinner or are unable to prepare dinner on their own.
Helping Hands of St. Marys, the Vietnam Veterans of America Bucktail Chapter 720, and other area residents placed 2,000 wreaths on veterans' graves in St. Marys and Kersey cemeteries on Saturday as part of the Wreaths Across America project, which seeks to honor deceased military members during the holiday season by placing wreaths on their grave sites as a remembrance of their service to the country. Through the generosity of area citizens and donations by several groups, Helping Hands and the Vietnam Veterans came very close to their goal of 2,300 wreaths.
SMETHPORT â€“ The alleged killer of a 21-year-old pregnant woman in Bradford in 2009 was ready Thursday to finalize a plea agreement that most likely would send him to state prison for life.
But the deal hit a sudden snag at a hearing in the McKean County Courthouse in Smethport, when defendant Thomas Paul Haggie claimed he failed to take medication that is prescribed for his mental issues.
County President Judge John Pavlock said he is "concerned" that Haggie "may not understand what's going on" because the defendant allegedly skipped the daily pills prescribed by a Bradford psychiatrist.
At their recent meeting, members of the St. Marys City Council discussed and took action on several different agenda items.
Tina Gradizzi, Community and Economic Development Coordinator, approached council requesting approval of guidelines for the HOME program.
The Nicholas J. Sinibaldi Symphonic Band will present a holiday concert this Saturday, Dec. 11, at 7:30 p.m. at Sacred Heart Church. The band will be conducted by Chris Gankowski, band director at the St. Marys Area High School.
Anne Herzing, daughter of the late Nicholas J. Sinibaldi, noted that this is the first year that the family-oriented concert will be held in a church.
"Sacred Heart, first of all, is one of the older churches [in the community]. Also, the fact is that my dad liked Sacred Heart. He always thought it was a very beautiful church," Herzing said.
During the St. Marys Area School Districtâ€™s re-organizational meeting, the school board approved numerous items.
Once again the board voted to continue to hold its regular meetings on the second Monday of each month at 7 p.m. in the SMAHS library.
They also voted to use The Daily Press as the newspaper of general circulation to serve as the publication entity for district notices.
Under business affairs the board approved the districtâ€™s annual financial report for the year ended June 30, 2010. Copies of the report are available in the business office.
According to statistics provided on the American Red Cross' website, as of 2006 there were around 9.5 million blood donors in the U.S., even though less than 38 percent of the population is eligible to give blood. Blood cannot be manufactured and its only source is donors who participate in bloodmobiles such as ones run by the American Red Cross.
Pat Schwarzmueller, team supervisor for the American Red Cross bloodmobile operation that covers northwestern Pennsylvania, explained that only about five percent of the population actually donates blood on a regular basis.
The Elk County Commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday morning to re-adopt the Elk County Section 3 Action Plan.
The Section 3 Action Plan is required to be re-adopted every one to two years.
â€śElk County has a Section 3 Action Plan in place,â€ť said Community Devlopment Block Grant coordinator Tracy Gerber. â€śIt's a requirement of funding through Housing and Urban Development and any funding received through there.
â€śThere have been no changes to the plan.â€ť
Joe Collins, St. Marys Area School District Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment, presented an update on various school programs at the latest school board meeting.
Under professional development, Collins provided board members with a listing of all Act 48 credited activities offered by the district.
Yesterday morning, the Elk County Commissioners presented the county's 2011 proposed budget with no tax increase.
In order to keep costs at a minimum, all offices were advised to plan for a zero percent increase in their 2011 budget.