The Progress News - 2020 Year in Review - Part 1

A look back at the events that shaped 2020 in our region. Communities coming together to help one another. A year of resilience!

• 2020 Parker Polar Bear Plunge 2020 Parker Polar Bear Plunge Held - “Freezin for A Reason” – 14 Years Straight.

• To celebrate new beginnings and the promise of the future, the ACRVR Blueprint Team announces a poster contest for local artists under 20.The ACRVR Blueprint Team Announces a Poster Contest

• Venango Area Chamber of Commerce Announces 2019 Citizen of the Year Venango Area Chamber of Commerce Announces 2019 Citizen of the Year. Emlenton’s Mayor, Jamie Hunt.

• “The Case of the Mysterious Benefactor” Dinner Theater Was Hosted by Edenburg Presbyterian Church.

• Oberlander Announces Re-election Bid for 63rd District.

• PA Farm Bureau Encouraged by China and PA Farm Bureau Encouraged by China and USMCA Trade Agreements - Pennsylvania Farm Bureau (PFB) is optimistic that a new trade deal signed between the United States and China and the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA)

• Clarion County Economic Development Corporation (CCEDC) moves to a new office location and hires Jarred Heuer, an economic development specialist to support their strategic vision of growth and advancement in Clarion County.

• Local Fire, EMS Companies to Receive Nearly $300,000 in State Grants. In our reading area those fire companies receiving were: Parker City Volunteer Fire Department – $24,104; Callensburg-Licking Township Volunteer Fire Company – $11,783; East Brady Area Ambulance Service – $5,137; East Brady Volunteer Fire Department – $12,057; Farmington Township Volunteer Fire Company

– $11,509; Knox Area Volunteer Ambulance Company – $9,192; · Knox Volunteer Fire Company – $12,331; · Perry Township Volunteer Fire Department – $9,725; Rimersburg Hose Company – $11,509; Sligo Volunteer Fire Department Inc. – $11,646; Southern Clarion County Volunteer Ambulance Service – $9,192; St. Petersburg Volunteer Fire Company – $11,509.

• A public meeting was held at the Emlenton Crawford Center for questions and organizing committees for the bike trail from Emlenton to Foxburg.

• ACRVR Blueprint Team announces poster contest winners. They were Maiah Kriebel of St. Petersburg; Keira McVay of Parker; Evelyn Ruckdeschel of Emlenton; and Summer Young of Emlenton.

• Veda McGinnis, of Boyers, celebrated her 106th birthday on January 31st.

• The Emlenton VFD gave a warm welcome home to Air Force Staff Sergeant Vanessa Klinger after returning home from a tour from an undisclosed location in southwest Asia. Later Staff Sergeant Klinger surprised her sons Damian and Isiah at their school.

•The Clarion County Economic Development Corporation (EDC) was approved for a $37,344 Industrial Sites Reuse Program (ISRP) grant for a two-phase environmental study. The brownfield site located on Route 322 in Clarion is approximately 63 acres, 10 of which had been utilized as a truck stop with fueling and repair services and operations since the 1970s. The funding will help determine how an unused site can be transformed and how it can be used to boost the economy and support residents in the surrounding community.

• ARCA Announces its 2020 season which is its 15th Anniversary Season

• Clintonville VFD has an engine donated to the fire department for their Kenworth tanker truck by Tom and Nancy Hovis of Hovis Truck Service. Also: Kenworth of Pennsylvania in Clintonville donated the company’s mechanical time to take apart the engine and fix or replace all needed parts.

• Clarion County Youth Running Program Clarion County Youth Running Program Encourages Kids to “Get Up And Go!” Encourages Kids to Get Up And Go! at Clarion County Park

• Allegheny RiverStone Center for the Arts proudly brings into the A-C Valley Schools a day of Educational ArtReach enrichment from one of Pennsylvania’s leading chamber music ensembles, the Renaissance City Winds.

• The Little Lady Gremlins captured their second basketball tournament win at the Butler Catholic Tournament on February 28th.

• Gov. Wolf & Sec. of Health Outline COVID-19 Mitigation Guidance for Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and Montgomery County – Take Aggressive Action to Stop the SpreadGov. Wolf & Sec. of Health Outline COVID-19 Mitigation Guidance for Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and Montgomery County

• Governor Wolf Announces Closure of Pennsylvania Schools: Governor Wolf Announces Closure of Pennsylvania Schools Harrisburg, PA – On Friday, March 13, 2020, Governor Tom Wolf announced that all K-12 Pennsylvania schools will be closed for 10 business days effective Monday, March 16 and will continue to monitor Covid-19 in the Commonwealth, and at the end of 10 days will reevaluate and decide whether continued closure is needed.

• Scheduled Events in the Area are Being Cancelled Due to Covid-19.

• Efforts By Rep. Marci Mustello (R-Butler) Are Made to Save Butler’s AK Steel from Shutdown Save AK Steel from Shutdown . . . Protect Workers. AK Steel is a leading producer of flat-rolled carbon, stainless and electrical steel products, and carbon and stainless tubular products.

• Perry Township Historical Society Announces a Perry Township Historical Society Civil War Experience to Host Civil War Experience to be held in September.

• Scheduled Events in the Area are Being Cancelled Due to Covid-19.

• Local Schools Offering Free Meals to Children While Closures are in Effect

• Butler BVA Health Care System Pro-Active in Fight against Coronavirus.

• Bishop of Erie, Lawrence T. Persico, JCL, suspend all public Masses in the Diocese of Erie effective Wednesday, March 18, because of the challenges brought by the COVID-19 pandemic.

• The Knox Area Ministerium embarked on a “Bag of Food” campaign for the youth in the Keystone School District. The campaign is held every Tuesday from 10 AM until Noon at the 512 Main Street location.

• Efforts are made to help support local retail business, grocery stores, bars and restaurants throughout the area.

Many restaurants develop new carry out menus, curb-side service and delivery to help curb the spread of COVID-19. Pennsylvania Small Business Development Centers Begin to Provided Technical Assistance Pennsylvania Small Business Development Centers Providing Technical Assistance for Businesses Amid Businesses Amid COVID-19

• Bridge Builders Community Foundations and United Way of Venango County Started a COVID-19 Relief Fund. The Fund will provide flexible resources to organizations in our region working with communities who are disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 and the economic consequences of this outbreak.

• On April 1, 2020 the PA DEP eFacts webpage revealed that as of March 27, 2020 Amerikohl’s most recent Permit Application 16180304 for a limestone strip-mine on Chestnut Ridge in Richland Township, Clarion County was WITHDRAWN.

• Rick Sheffer, former Emlenton Native, authors a book, “Coming of Age”. Now available at local Emlenton retail stores and on Amazon.

• Local residents and Amazing Stitches begin to make and donate face masks for health care workers.

• In an effort to create a sense of unity and to help Christians observe some of the holiest days of the year appropriately while unable to attend church, the Diocese of Erie launched #HolyWeekAtHome. The campaign began by asking people to hang greens on their front doors on Sunday, April 5, in observance of Palm Sunday.

• The lot across the street from Farmers National Bank was razed to make room for a community park and parking lot. This was the location for auto detail shop owned by Bob Makuch.

• The Progress News and the Boys & Girls Club Along the Allegheny held an Easter Egg Hunt contest with Easter Eggs hidden throughout the paper. The lucky winner was Kenlee Smith of Chicora.

• East Brady Business Leaders and Volunteers, Cook and Deliver Easter Meals and Cheer. The plan included the residents at the East Brady Riverview Apartments and the veterans at the Mechling-Shakley Veterans Center. Luanne McAnallen of the All Stars Bar and Restaurant, along with Tracy Barnhart Sheakly, Renee Patton and Jeannie Livengood spearheaded the project.

• Gov. Wolf Announces Reopening of 24 Counties Beginning May 8th Balancing economic benefits and public health risks, Governor Tom Wolf on Friday announced the reopening of 24 counties in the northwest and north-central regions of the state, moving them from red to yellow beginning at 12:01 a.m., Friday, May 8. The counties included the entire Diocese of Erie!

• The Progress News “Year in Review” will be continued next week.

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