Mountain Mama: Sacred Places

first_imgThe sacred places, the ones that become annual rites of passages, mark the year’s progress. The landscape reminds us where we’ve been, and the breeze carries our dreams for the year ahead.Newtowne Neck State Park is one of my special places, as much for the memories the contour of the land holds as for the people I spend time with when I’m there.The state of Maryland purchased a peninsula that jets out into the Potomac River from the Jesuits, an order of Catholic priests who farmed the land for 300 years. The State of Maryland developed a paradise for swimmers, sea kayakers, and stand up paddle boarders along seven miles of sandy shoreline.photo1Back when the Jesuits still owned it, I was twelve-years old and my family lived about a mile away in a rundown farmhouse.Landlocked, my brothers and I explored where we could, wandering the graveyard dating back to the 1700s and making up stories about the children buried there. We rode our bikes between fields of towering corn stalks well past twilight.The state park provides something for our kids that we never had for the year we lived there – access to the river. The strands of golden beaches offer a connection to the water, a place to swim, crab, beachcomb, and launch kayaks.It’s become a family tradition, to load our own kids and a fleet of kayaks and pile into a couple trucks.Newtowne Neck is still a place with more land than people, where time seems to slow down and even our kids get quiet and still enough to notice the changing tides and the ospreys diving for dinner.photo3My sister-in-law, Oona, and I float in kayaks while our kids splash in the water.She turns to me. “What a difference a year makes. Remember the conversations we had here last year?”Memories wash over me. Last year I was talking about taking Tobin sailing for a month. The idea seemed so daunting and impossible, but also possessed me because at the time it was the only thing I really wanted to do. I was contemplating leaving a job and starting my own business. A year later, I have started a business and we set sail last January.I gaze at Tobin. Last year he was three, a few months away from turning four. He was still shy most of the time, greeting strangers with his face buried into the back of my knees, terrified of being seen by the world.Tobin calls out to me and interrupts my thoughts. “Mama, we want a turn with the kayaks.”I see his older cousin already climbing into a kayak, so I paddle to shore and watch as he gets into my kayak.Tobin paddles his own kayak for the first time. The kayak, big and unwieldy, makes it difficult for his small body to control. When he can’t turn the kayak, he stands up and sits down facing his body toward the stern, continuing to paddle forward in an effort to keep up with his big cousin.I dip my toes in the water standing side-by-side with Oona, admiring our sons’ respective growth over the past year. We do the thing parents do, wondering aloud, “How did he get so big?”The boys paddle further out into the water, further away from us.I try to remember who Tobin was a year ago, trying to recall what phrases he said and what he liked to play. I struggle to conjure up his three-year-old self and I begin to doubt if I was present enough in his life, or even my own.Tobin lands his kayak and pulls it up on the beach, out of reach from the incoming tide. His shoulders and back look so strong. He’s all muscle and ribs, none of his toddler fat remains.He runs up to me. “Mama, I leaned my kayak way over, I was tacking it.”I laugh. Tacking is a sailing term for turning the bow of a boat through the wind and inevitably the boat leans over on its side. We’ve led a watery life together and he’s integrating the experiences in his mind, making them his own.The sun lowers in the sky and I wrap a towel around Tobin. He reaches his arms upward, toward me. “Mama, hold me.”I scoop him in my arms and press him close, aware that time passes and we grow older, whether we intend to or nor. Standing in there bathed by the bright pastels of the setting sun, all my other goals and dreams fall away.All that is left is the important stuff – I am experiencing this sacred place with my son and some of our most beloved.More from Mountain Mama:last_img read more

Read More »

East Meadow Man Drowned in Penn., Reports Say

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York A 29-year-old East Meadow man reportedly drowned in a Pennsylvania lake over the Fourth of July weekend.Gabriel Pierro was found floating in Paupackan Lake in Paupak Township shortly after 9 p.m. Sunday, Wayne County authorities told news outlets in northeastern Pennsylvania.The victim was pronounced dead two hours later, according to news reports.last_img

Read More »

Local restaurants feel the heat of recent Maines Paper and Food Service decline

first_imgShe is now working to fill the void Maines left, but said other vendors don’t have what she needs. However, she hopes it doesn’t hurt her clientele. Co-owner of Lupo’s, Steve Lupo, has been using the company for more than 40 years for products ranging from steak to produce. “There were times we bought seventy percent of our products from them,” Lupo explained Wednesday. So now he says, “I’ll be using another vendor, and I’ll have to watch pricing, we used Maines because of their quality and because their pricing was always fair, so we’re going to have to go to other vendors, maybe expect some shortages.” Not the only one feeling the impact, Chroma Cafe and Bakery in Binghamton is dealing with the same change. Looking to the future when things return to normal, Lupo predicts, “You’re going to have big pushes and bigger shortages probably because you’re going to have how many restaurants in each area, opening up, trying to open up immediately.” Lindsey Cummings saying, “We’re going to try and see if we can make it through.” Also, the loss of the supplier is hurting her wallet because she said the prices were so affordable. Also a fan of the quality and prices, owner Gerilyn Lindsey-Cummings says, “It’s going to be hard to find those things in other places.” After all those years, however, Lupo received a call from his Maines salesman this week. “Our customers are used to a certain product and a certain standard and if we have to alter that in some way, I just don’t want our customers to be disappointed,” explained Lindsey-Cummings. (WBNG) — Restaurants across the Southern Tier that relied on Maines Paper and Food Service for products now struggle to fill a major void amid the company’s shutdown of service. It’s a change that isn’t helping the already dire, local restaurant situation. “He no longer has his job because Maines is no longer operating their distribution center to restaurants,” said Lupo.last_img read more

Read More »

Governor Wolf Takes Important Steps Toward Strengthening Workforce Development, Improving Efforts to Help People with Disabilities Find Employment

first_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitter Governor Wolf Takes Important Steps Toward Strengthening Workforce Development, Improving Efforts to Help People with Disabilities Find Employment March 10, 2016center_img Economy,  Government That Works,  Jobs That Pay,  Press Release,  Results,  Workforce Development Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf today took two important steps that will improve and strengthen workforce development in Pennsylvania by aligning workforce development efforts with the private sector, strengthening connections between public sector efforts, and making the workforce development process more inclusive. Governor Wolf announced his administration has begun the submission process of the Pennsylvania Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) four-year combined state plan to the United States Department of Labor (USDOL). This plan will allow Pennsylvania to coordinate workforce training and funding to ensure Pennsylvania workers of all ages have the skills to compete in the 21st century and employers have a skilled workforce that aligns with emerging needs. Governor Wolf also signed an executive order to increase integrated employment opportunities among people with disabilities in Pennsylvania.“Since taking office, I have made creating jobs that pay and a government that works key priorities, and today I am taking important steps to strengthen workforce development in Pennsylvania,” said Governor Wolf. “This is a starting point for an unprecedented effort in Pennsylvania to transcend fragmented workforce programs, overcome silos, and promote program integration.”New federal legislation requires each state to submit a four-year unified or combined state plan outlining the state’s workforce development strategy. Pennsylvania used the opportunity to work with the private sector and many agencies including the departments of Labor & Industry, Aging, Agriculture, Community and Economic Development, Corrections, Education, Human Services, and Military and Veterans Affairs to create a plan that strengthen workforce development in Pennsylvania while leveraging federal efforts.There are five broad goals for the commonwealth’s workforce development plan:Establish clear career pathways.Expand public-private investment in the state’s pipeline of workers and incumbent workers.Increase opportunities for all youth to participate in work-based learning.Engage employers through multi-employer workforce partnerships.Strengthen data sharing across state agencies and workforce development partners.Pennsylvania cannot succeed without a strong workforce, and today’s actions will make it easier for Pennsylvania’s public and private sectors to work together to improve the commonwealths efforts to improve the workforce and strengthen the economy.Furthermore, Governor Wolf recognized that often those with disabilities face barriers to integrated employment opportunities and signed an executive order to make hiring and workforce development more inclusive. Wolf’s executive order is designed to increase employment among people with disabilities, and his administration will explore ways to reduce barriers to employment, as well as conduct a thorough review of programs and policies with a goal of increasing the overall number of people with disabilities who are employed in competitive-integrated jobs. The plan will also work to align funding, policy, data collection, and practices.“This action will increase the hiring of Pennsylvanians with a disability by allowing the commonwealth to tap a largely unused labor pool, and we will position Pennsylvania to be a model state in creating a climate hospitable to workers with a disability, who are a valuable resource,” Governor Wolf said.  “Under this executive order, competitive, integrated employment becomes the first consideration and preferred outcome of publicly funded education, training, employment, and long-term supports and service programs for working-age Pennsylvanians with a disability.”Like Governor Tom Wolf on Facebook: Facebook.com/GovernorWolflast_img read more

Read More »

Governor Wolf Addresses Elder Access to Justice Conference, Warns of the AHCA’s Damaging Effects on Seniors

first_imgGovernor Wolf Addresses Elder Access to Justice Conference, Warns of the AHCA’s Damaging Effects on Seniors SHARE Email Facebook Twitter Healthcare,  National Issues,  Press Release,  Public Health,  Seniors Blue Bell, PA – Today, Governor Tom Wolf offered remarks at the fifth annual Elder Access to Justice Roundtable Conference in Blue Bell, highlighting his administration’s efforts to protect seniors and focusing on the harmful effects of the American Health Care Act (AHCA).“One of the most important jobs of government is protecting the benefits and financial security of older Pennsylvanians,” Gov. Wolf said. “The American Health Care Act is an especially harmful and damaging piece of legislation that targets services and populations that need health care the most, including Pennsylvania’s seniors.”Numerous national senior and medical organizations oppose the AHCA, including the AARP, the American Medical Association, and the American Hospital Association.“The AHCA guts protections and services that Pennsylvania seniors rely on to get quality, affordable care,” Governor Wolf said. “Make no mistake, under this proposal, seniors lose coverage, the ability to make their own choices, and they lose money.“Earlier this week I joined Senator Bob Casey to oppose the devastating impacts this plan would have on Pennsylvanians. And I pledge to continue to fight against this misguided legislation, and to stand up for older Pennsylvanians.”The Elder Access to Justice Conference was created to bring together diverse representatives of the community to raise awareness, and to prevent, identify and address elder abuse, neglect and exploitation by enhancing communication, identifying systemic problems, sponsoring training, and improving access to justice in Montgomery County.Pennsylvania Department of Aging Secretary Teresa Osborne was keynote speaker. More than 150 attorneys, representatives of senior stakeholder groups, including SeniorLAW Center and Community Legal Services, Montgomery County Aging and Adult Services, and clinical and social workers attended the conference, held at Montgomery County Community College.center_img June 16, 2017last_img read more

Read More »

Cory Michael Dufrene

first_imgCory Michael Dufrene, age 38, of Osgood passed away Saturday, May 13, 2017. Cory was born in Dearborn County on November 3, 1978 the son of Dwight Dufrene of Paradis, Louisiana, and Sandra (Short) Dufrene of Manchester, Indiana.Cory spent several years in Louisiana growing up and attended Hahnville High School in Boutte, Louisiana. After school he enlisted in the Army, and was stationed in Fort Carson, CO. He served tours defending our country in Bosnia and Kosovo.In the fall of 2001, he met what would become the love of his life Rachel Ent, and the two were married on September 20, 2003. They have resided in Osgood for the past several years. They have 2 sons, Jarod an 8th grader at Jac-Cen-Del; and special blessing, Cole. Cory has always been the light and hero in Cole’s many battles throughout his life. After coming to Osgood, Cory spent several years working at Valeo in Greensburg, IN.Cory is survived wife, Rachel, and his sons of Osgood, his parents, sister Traci Dufrene of North Carolina, father- in- law Norman Ent of Cincinnati, mother- in -law Vicki (Tim Chrisman) Ent of Osgood, and grandmother March Dufrene of Louisiana.A gathering of friends and family will be held Friday, May 19, 2017 at Neal’s Funeral Home in Osgood at 11:00 am until the time of the funeral at 12:00 noon. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the family in care of the Funeral Homelast_img read more

Read More »

Thies tops IMCA Modified main at Raceway Park

first_imgJim Thies won the Sunday feature for IMCA Modifieds at Raceway Park. (Photo by Tim Smith)JEFFERSON, S.D. (July 23) – Jim Thies pulled away in the waning laps to win Sunday’s Total Motor IMCA Modified feature at Raceway Park.Jason Schneiders was a close second. Ricky Stephan, Justin Zeitner and Nick Lakes rounded out the top five.Travis Barker led Jason Ward across the stripe in the Casey’s General Store IMCA Stock Car feature while Craig Clift raced through the field for the Golden Auto IMCA Hobby Stock win.Dave Kennedy captured the KCAU IMCA Northern SportMod checkers while Daniel Vanderveen prevailed in the Z98 IMCA Sport Compact feature.last_img

Read More »

McKinnon, Phang emerge winners of GSSF/Orinduik Development Inc. Shoot

first_imgRYAN McKinnon and Andrew Phang were winners as the Guyana Sport Shooting Foundation hosted its first Practical Pistol Match for 2020, sponsored by Orinduik Development Inc. Local practical shooters gathered at the Timehri shooting ranges to take part in an exciting Practical Pistol Match which comprised five challenging but fun stages.The Match was conducted by Match Director,  David Dharry who declared it open.When the dust settled, McKinnon had taken the limited division with 335.4148 points ahead of Pravesh Harry (324.8440 points) and John Phang (225.3842 points).In the Production division, Phang (351.7516 points) won ahead of David Dharry (230.8017 points) and Dallas Thomas (185.1150 points).At the Opening Ceremony, Managing Director, Brian Backer, of the match sponsor’s company delivered brief remarks and wished competitors all the best for a safe match.The five stages were as follows: ‘Zig-or-Zag challenged shooters’ strategic abilities with multiple possible routes to complete the course of fire. Reverse Gear tested their ability to shoot from a stable position while moving backward.4 Bill Drill was a standard exercise, meaning that shooters could compare their scores on that stage with shooters around the world for a skill ranking. It involved drawing from the holster multiple times, rapid magazine changes and firing both right and left-handed.Go a fish was a fun, quick-fire stage which involved rising from a seated position to engage close range targets.The Ironsides stage rigorously tested the technique and discipline of the shooters with shooting positions that were unfamiliar and uncomfortable while they aimed at targets that demanded high accuracy.At the end of the Match, members of the Guyana Sport Shooting Foundation (GSSF) were all treated to a special Side Match whereby he/she could use any firearm on the range to engage three steel targets to compete against each other to see who can do so in the fastest time. After many tries and enthused cheering on, Harold Hopkinson emerged victorious.last_img read more

Read More »

Andy Murray wins Paris Masters to celebrate world number one status

first_imgAndy Murray topped off a week that saw him named as the world number one for the first time with victory over John Isner in the final of the Paris Masters, winning 6-3 6-7 6-4.The Briton, who will take over from Novak Djokovic at the top of the ATP rankings on Monday, survived a barrage of aces against the towering American to win his 14th career Masters tournament.The three-times grand slam champion gave little breathing space to Isner, who was hoping to clinch his first Masters title after two lost finals.Murray will be the top seed at the season-ending ATP World Tour finals at the O2 Arena in London from Nov. 13-20.”Thanks to my team and my family who were commenting back home. This has been an incredible journey for me to get to the top of the rankings, I could have not done it without all of you,” said Murray.The double Olympic champion entered the contest with a 7-0 record against Isner and his recent form, which had helped him to win six of his eight previous tournaments since losing the French Open final, suggested he would have the upper hand. Murray, who now has 43 titles to his name, broke in the sixth game on his first opportunity when Isner sent a backhand long.Andy Murray wins Paris Masters to celebrate world number one statusEurosport UK1 hour agoAndy Murray topped off a week that saw him named as the world number one for the first time with victory over John Isner in the final of the Paris Masters, winning 6-3 6-7 6-4.The Briton, who will take over from Novak Djokovic at the top of the ATP rankings on Monday, survived a barrage of aces against the towering American to win his 14th career Masters tournament. The three-times grand slam champion gave little breathing space to Isner, who was hoping to clinch his first Masters title after two lost finals.Murray will be the top seed at the season-ending ATP World Tour finals at the O2 Arena in London from Nov. 13-20.”Thanks to my team and my family who were commenting back home. This has been an incredible journey for me to get to the top of the rankings, I could have not done it without all of you,” said Murray.The double Olympic champion entered the contest with a 7-0 record against Isner and his recent form, which had helped him to win six of his eight previous tournaments since losing the French Open final, suggested he would have the upper hand.Murray, who now has 43 titles to his name, broke in the sixth game on his first opportunity when Isner sent a backhand long. The American, who served a total of 18 aces, had two chances to break back in the following game as he opened up a 40-15 lead.Murray saved the first with a routine volley after managing to lob his 2.08-metre opponent, and forced Isner to bury a backhand into the net on the second.He bagged the opening set with an unreturned serve having made only four unforced errors.Isner earned three break points thanks to a splendid drop shot followed by a forehand winner. Murray saved them all, the last one with a second-serve ace, and staved off another one to stay level.In the tiebreak, Isner went 4-2 up when Murray double faulted, and the American closed it out with a booming forehand winner to send the contest into a decider.last_img read more

Read More »

Middletown Promotes Three Police Officers

first_imgMIDDLETOWN – The Middletown Township Police Department has promoted one officer to the rank of Lieutenant and two officers to the rank of sergeant.Interim Lieutenant Sean P. Sweeney has been promoted to Lieutenant. Interim Sergeants Charles J. Higgins and Jason M. Caruso accepted their oaths of office at the Township Committee meeting Monday.“These promotions represent a significant milestone in their careers, and they should be very proud of everything they have accomplished,” said Police Chief R. Craig Weber. “I am confident they will continue to do a good job for the department.”Lieutenant Sweeney, a Monmouth County resident, was promoted to the rank of Sergeant in 2010.He joined the Middletown Police Department in 2002. He was previously employed as a Union Beach dispatcher and Special Officer. He attended the Monmouth County Police Academy for Special 1 and Class A Certification. Lt. Sweeney has also studied criminal justice at Brookdale Community College.His parents, Michael and Betty Sweeney, his children Eric, Ashley, Jena and Patrick and his girlfriend Lynn Nelson were in attendance when he accepted his oath of office.Sergeant Higgins joined the Middletown Police Department in 2006. During his tenure he has served as a Field Training Officer. Sgt. Higgins is the recipient of a Middletown Township Life Saving Award and a MADD Award. He has studied criminal justice at Brookdale Community College and Montclair State University. Sgt. Higgins, an EMT, currently resides in Middletown. He’s originally from Manasquan.His wife Jamie, daughters Hailey and Rylee and his son Luke were in attendance when he accepted his oath of office.Sergeant Caruso, a Monmouth County resident, joined the Middletown Police Department in 2008. He graduated first in his class at the Monmouth County Police Academy and has a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Monmouth University. He resides in Howell.His wife Lauren and parents Deborah and Michael Caruso were in attendance when he accepted his oath of office.– Madelynne Kislovsky contributed to this storylast_img read more

Read More »