Swarthmore Borough Council:
High Spirits and Budget Progress
By Katie Crawford
There was a hint of a festive mood at the Monday night meeting of Borough Council. Community members in support of the Swarthmore Senior Citizens’ Association filled a good half of the room’s seats. Linton Stables, representing the SSCA, spoke to council about the senior group’s request for the borough to allot $19,500 in funds in the 2018-19 budget for its work in the community. Mr. Stables added that all of the money would be used to address the specific recommendations of the Aging-in-Place Task Force. The supportive presence of friends and neighbors in support of the SSCA, while appreciated by council, was icing on the cake, given that the General Government Committee had already decided to support their budget request. General Government chair Ross Schmucki noted that the SSCA had not put forth a request in many years. Once that good news had been delivered, most of the community members there in support exited …
Frank Steltz on the radar platform of the USS Blandy.
Vets on the Radar
Not all heroes are in movies. Wars are won, freedom is preserved, lives are saved by service men and women who keep the mighty machines and massive armed forces working as they grow up and gain confidence and expertise. The effort and talent of service personnel rarely gets recognized. We have an action story for you next week.
This week and last, at Occasionally Yours and Vicky’s Place, we heard about hard work, commitment, and good times from several local veterans of varying vintages. Here’s a recollection from Frank Steltz of Wallingford, who served in the U.S. Navy from 1963 through 1967. “I was a terrible high school student, and after graduating 62nd out of a class of 63 from high school in 1963, I decided to upgrade to a four year Navy hitch if I could get a good school. The recruiter gave me the Navy’s entry exam and I must have done pretty well in the math part because he said the navy would guarantee Electronics Technician (ET) school, the best and hardest “A” school the navy had. So I signed up. “On September 24, 1963, I said goodbye to my girlfriend Marion and my parents, and …
‘Little Women’ Come to Life on SHHS Stage
This fall’s Strath Haven High School dramatic production is a retelling of the beloved novel by Louisa May Alcott, presented at the SHHS auditorium in four performances beginning Thursday, November 9. Director and SHHS English teacher Jeannie Pietrzak describes …
‘Swarthmore Jeopardy’ at TGP
Linton Stables channels Alex Trebek in Wednesday’s special edition of the Gathering Place, especially for game show fans. Tune in for lunch at noon on November 15 at the Gathering Place, then test your knowledge of trivia as the Swarthmore Senior Citizens’ Association president leads the group in a rousing game of Swarthmore Jeopardy. Topics may include Swarthmore history, local geography, College matters, senior facts …
The horrific damage done by a tree to Win Welsh’s home on St. Croix during Hurricane Maria.
A Vacation, Repurposed
Usually on the second week in October, the five Welsh siblings get together in St. Croix for a reunion, a drink or two, and lots of tennis, “which when we play it is a contact sport,” says Dave Welsh, owner of D. Patrick Welsh Real Estate in Swarthmore. This year was different in the wake of Hurricane Maria, which hit the U.S. Virgin Islands pretty hard.
A view of the walkway down to the pool at Win Welsh’s cottage resort.
Win, the sister among the five siblings and resident owner of a St. Croix cottage resort where the Welsh gang holes up, is a former landscaping contractor who had her work cut out for her. Most flights to the island in early October were canceled, including 3 out of 4 Welsh round trips. Dave was still up for the adventure, though he packed a bit differently than usual. Instead of a tennis racquet, Dave took a chainsaw — “Brand new, still in the box — the only way they let you take it on the plane,” Dave said.
Puerto Rico was walloped by Maria, of course, and will be years coming back. St. Croix, not far away, was more fortunate, Dave says. The island is narrow, flat and not hard to access for crews restoring infrastructure like power lines. The power plant in Christiansted is back on line, so the banking system works, though generators still drone throughout the country. As for the Welsh family property, the buildings weathered the storm well, but the chainsaw got put through its paces.
For those seeking to support relief and rebuilding efforts in the Caribbean, consider donating to the American Red Cross at redcross.org, the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands at usvirecovery.org, or Tim Duncan’s hurricane relief fund at 21usvihurricanehelp.com.
Fire Department Report
By Rich Cresson
Swarthmore firefighters responded to a chimney fire on the 200 block of Dickinson Avenue on Saturday, October 28. The heating season has arrived. In accordance with that, residents are reminded to have their heating systems and chimneys serviced annually to avoid possible malfunctions and unintended fires. Photo by Rich Cresson
From October 22 through November 5, the Swarthmore Fire & Protective Association responded to the following alarms:
EMS: The ambulance responded to 43 calls for medical assistance. These were to Swarthmore, Rutledge, Morton, Springfield, Ridley Township, and Nether Providence Township. The calls were for a variety of emergencies including accident with injury, sick person, seizures, overdose, fall with trauma, cardiac emergency, head injury, syncopal episode, change in mental status, back pain, hypertension, semi-conscious person, unconscious person, respiratory difficulty, nature unknown, subject down, hemorrhaging, cerebro vascular event, tachycardia, resident stuck in wheelchair, …
Art Happening in Swarthmore this Saturday
In conjunction with this Saturday’s Farmers Market, the first-ever Swarthmore Art will be held on November 11 from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
More than 20 artists and artisans will exhibit and offer their work for sale along South Chester Road from the clock at the SEPTA station to the Inn at Swarthmore. That section of road will be closed for the duration of the market.
Pictured is Kristen Buck and her business is Crooked Curiosities. This photo was taken when she participated as The Featured Artist at the Swarthmore Farmers Market this summer. Most of the artists that have been at the Farmers Market during this season will be at the Art Market as well as some new local artists.
Fetter Chamber Music Concert Next Friday at Lang
On Friday, November 17, student musicians from the Elizabeth Pollard Fetter program perform the first of three chamber music concerts this academic year. The performance at 8 p.m.in Lang Concert Hall is free and open to all. Performers and selections include: Gospel Choir: DuLaney, Victory Belongs to Jesus; Franklin, My World Needs You; …
Prison Recidivism: Why?
Despite efforts at reform and restructuring preparation of prisoners for release, recidivism rates remain maddeningly high. On Monday, November 13, at 4:30 p.m., Erin Corbett, a 1999 graduate of Swarthmore College, makes the case that limited opportunities for education and post-prison employment are prime contributors to the phenomenon …
Richard Cresson in Normandy, at the grave marker of Swarthmorean Lt. John J. Stokes.
Honoring D-Day Veterans,
At Home and Over There
By Donna Cresson
In August, my husband Richard, son Johnathan, and I toured the World War II battlefields of Normandy, France. This trip was a ‘bucket-list’ must do to honor Richard’s father, William J. Cresson, Jr., a Naval Lieutenant Commander. Stationed in Dartmouth on the southern coast of England, he was tasked with adjusting the compasses on the invasion ships in preparation for the D-Day landing on June 6, 1944.
A friend and fellow Swarthmorean, Lieutenant John H. Stokes, Jr. USNR, was also part of the war effort. It is unclear what his duty was in the D-Day invasion, but he was part of the initial landing forces. The day following the invasion, a mutual friend to these two Swarthmoreans informed William that John was killed in action on D-Day. William always desired “to make it to the other side of the channel” to visit Mr. Stokes’s grave with Richard. Unfortunately, William never made it to Normandy, but this summer, his son and grandson did.
Mr. Stokes’s name is read every year during Swarthmore’s Memorial Day commemoration services, and it was Richard’s wish to honor both his father and Mr. Stokes.
PCS Ventures into the Wilderness
Oliver Feaster and George Mulford appear in A Great Wilderness At the Players Club of Swarthmore
The Players Club of Swarthmore opens a new production of A Great Wilderness this weekend at the Raymond W. Smith Stage. The play by Samuel D. Hunter concerns the last assignment of Walt, who counsels teenaged boys at his camp in remote Idaho, with the goals of persuading them to renounce their homosexuality. Things fall apart as his client Daniel disappears into the wilderness, and Walt confronts his own contradictions.
Anthony SanFilippo directs this drama, whose cast includes George Mulford and Timothy Oskin of Swarthmore, Oliver Feaster of Glenolden, Lisa Eckley Cocchiarale …
Arts and Sciences Meet in Three Talks at College
Artistic expression and scientific study conjoin in three talks this coming week at Swarthmore College, all of which are free and open to the public.
On Monday, November 13, at 4:30 p.m., Canadian poet and professor Adam Dickinson speaks on “Biological Media; The Poetry of Chemical and Microbiomes in the Anthropocene” at the Lang Center for Social Responsibility. Dickinson argues for the critical potential of an “ecopoetics” mixing science and art. He will read from and discuss two related books of his poetry: The Polymers and Anatomic. The night sky has …
Panther Pajama Run This Saturday
Run in pajamas, walk in slippers — just don’t sleep through the annual Panther Pajama Run and Pancake Breakfast this Saturday, November 11. It’s a major fundraiser for the Foundation for Wallingford-Swarthmore Schools, and a scrumptious outing for all members of your family. The big day unfurls at the George L. King Field …
American Immigration at the Crossroads
The Swarthmore Discussion Group continues its monthly series of thought-provoking evenings over dinner with a talk by Thomas Alexander Aleinikoff on Wednesday, November 15, on Immigration policy and its implications.
Swarthmore College 1974 alumnus Aleinnkinoff is director of the Zolberg Institute on Migration and Mobility. He will address the perplexing issues of legal immigration, refugee accommodation, and border enforcement in the blunt force “America First” era. The group meets at the Inn at Swarthmore, 10 S. Chester Road, for Happy hour conversation at …
DCYO and YMO Set Program for Nov. 19 Concerts
By Michele S. de Cruz-Saenz
The Delaware County Youth Orchestra’s WSSD contingent.
The Delaware County Youth Orchestra and its intermediate ensemble, the Young Musicians Orchestra, will share a venue for their respective Fall concerts. Both concerts will take place at the Welsh Valley Middle School in Narberth, Pa., on Sunday, November 19. Concerts are free and accessible to those with disability. At 3 p.m., DCYO, under the direction of maestro Andrew Hauze will perform German, “Three Dances from Henry VIII, Brahms, “Tragic Overture,” op. 81, Strauss II, “Overture to Der Zigeunerbaron,” and Copland, Billy the Kid. At 7:30 …
Beginners, Explore Yoga at SPL
Turn over a fall leaf and explore a healthy new habit through Swarthmore Public Library this autumn. Donna Shumaker will teach a beginner-friendly yoga series for adults, with three weekly sessions beginning Wednesday, November 29, from 7 to 8 pm. You should …
What’s New in ‘Everybody’s Hometown?’
Media Mayor Bob McMahon will speak next Tuesday, November 14, at the monthly Prime Time Luncheon at Wallingford Presbyterian Church. His talk will catch us up on new developments in the borough, and will include a focus on veteran initiatives. A Viet Nam vet himself, the mayor will describe how veterans are helping educate Media …
No Longer at This Address
By Barbara Bernhardt
Did you ever wonder who lived in your house years ago? Back in the day (and maybe even still), your house location might have been identified as, “I live in the old Gerner house (or the Harris house or the Bernhardt house) on South Princeton.” I never thought when I moved to an apartment that I would wonder who lived there before me, but when an invitation to the Wallingford Community Art Center arrived in the mail addressed to Amelia Furman, I couldn’t help but wonder: who’s Amelia Furman?
Now, the Internet gives us immediate answers to such questions, and all I had to do was type in the name and there she was — an artist, wife and mother who grew up in Pa. now living and painting in Loveland, Colorado. Well, that was just too much! Though I …
Come Set a Spell
It’s that time: The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee is in town this weekend. (Don’t worry if you missed the first 24; you’ll catch up soon.) The Tony Award-winning musical, a smash on Broadway, will receive a full orchestral stage production by the Swarthmore College Departments of Theater and Music and Dance. This collaboration is directed by visiting assistant professor and Philadelphia theater innovator Alex Torra, with …
4Ever Grateful FUSE Concert Sunday
On Sunday, November 12, Congregation Ohev Shalom will ring out with sounds of joy and thanksgiving as the joined voices of area adult and youth singers participate in a concert organized by FUSE – the Fellowship of Urban-Suburban Engagement. The concert …