Call your mom , your son, your cousins, your friends! Because this weekend is a great weekend to come home to Schuylkill County! It's Block of Art -- the weekend when downtown Pottsville is transformed into a huge art gallery.
The weekend begins today with a bang at 6:30 p.m. with the grand opening of Block of Art and a performance by Artists in Motion at the Ramada Inn. Then you can enjoy music by the After Hours Big Band -- and hopefully take a turn around the floor -- from 8 p.m. - 10 p.m.
Saturday is the big day! Buildings throughout the downtown will be displaying art. You can check out this map beforehand if you like. There are also some art projects for kids at the Ramada as well as additional activities for them at the Pottsville Free Public Library. There will also be live performances by dancers, actors and singers at the Ramada and you can watch a few artists "at work" as well as purchase their work. Musicians can also be found at the Majestic Theatre and the Wheel. Stop by between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.
Sunday is a day to mingle with the artists who created everything you enjoyed on Saturday. Enjoy Brunch with the Artists at the Greystone starting at 11 a.m.cost is $20 and you need a reservation. Call 570-628-4220. Young art lovers can enjoy the end of this year's block of art too with tea at The Maid's Quarters from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tickets are $16.25 and you need a reservation. Call 484-223-9497.
There's also a great Scavanger Hunt that begins at the Ramada Inn! Don't miss it.
Are you in the mood for a race? First up is a fun, colorful and pretty racuous race -- the 30th annual Duck Race to benefit Avenues Foundation on Sunday, April 29. You can purchase a duck who will be competing in the race for $5. The race will be at Walmart in St. Clair at 3:32 p.m. and each duck has a chance to win one of 25 prizes, including a grand prize of $1,000! Tickets can be purchased at any Avenues' location or board member as well as Robin's diner, CACL Financial and Hydro Extrusions. Come to the party at Walmart on Sunday starting at noon. There will be food, music, entertainment, children's activities and more.
If you'd rather do the racing instead of cheering on your rubber ducky, May 5 is the day for you since there will be TWO races you can compete in that day. The Care Net 5K Run/Walk: Oh the Places We'll Go is a 3.1 mile race on the Schuylkill River Trail in Landingville from 10 a.m. to noon. For more information contact Care Net at 570-728-2135. Also that day is the Inaugural Colorful Wishes Race at 11 a.m. at Schuylkill Haven Island Park to benefit the Make a Wish Foundation. Registration is $35 until April 28 and $40 after April 28. Registration includes beads, sunglasses and t-shirt. this race is just for fun AND to raise money for Make A Wish -- there will be no timing of runners (or walkers) or prizes. There will also be music, concessions and basket raffle. To register contact Tracy Tinari at 570-449-0602 or Judy Hauck at 570-516-5316.
t How was your weekend? Mine was SO tremendous. It's finally feeling like Spring! If you decided to do a little Spring cleaning you might want to start with your medicine cabinet (ironically one of the worst places to store medications because of humidity and temperature changes in the bathroom). But, wherever you store your medication take some time this week to look over all your bottles and containers to determine what is out-of-date or just leftover. This Saturday, April 28 is National Drug Take-Back Day. There are so many reasons to week through your medications.
I've been sick all week with a Spring cold. I'd say there's nothing worse than being sick when the weather's great outside but...I am feeling a bit better so I'm hoping for some fun this weekend!
I went to a local store this week to buy a few tomato plants (they were on sale). Sadly, they were on sale because someone left them outside and it isn't outdoor weather for unprotected tomato plants. But if, like me, you're eagerly thinking about growing you can celebrate the growing season this Saturday at Heisler's Cloverleaf Dairy (743 Catawissa road, Tamaqua). Plow Day has been organized by the Schuylkill County Agricultural Museum and Schuylkill County Fair. Registration begins at 9 a.m. and plowing at 10 a.m. It's a fun event to watch, especially for those with children who have a fascination with large vehicles: fire trucks, constructions equipment and farm equipment. Rain (or snow) date is May 5. Have fun!
Earth Day is also Saturday. You can mark this day by improving nature in your community. Tuscarora State Park -- the home of many great hikes and outdoor events -- is asking volunteers to help complete several Spring cleaning jobs such as trail maintenance and litter pick up. register by calling Robin Tracey at 570-467-2506. Volunteers should meet at the visitors' center at 8:30 a.m. and bring a bag lunch. This is a great opportunity for local high school students who must complete volunteer hours!
For fishing fans and those hoping to convert younger family members to fishing fans, Sweet Arrow Lake County Park is hosting a Family Fishing Event on Sunday, April 22. You must have a PA fishing license if you are over 16 years old. There will be prizes for tagged fish -- over $5,000 with the top prize being $1,000! Check-in begins at 6:30 a.m. and remains open at the clubhouse until 1:15 p.m. Breakfast and lunch will be available. Registration is $25 per person, including a $5 food voucher or $45 for a family with a $10 food voucher.
The snowflakes on Monday had mean a little down (didn't my husband promise that the LAST snow was the onion snow?). But I just keeping looking forward to weather reports that promise us 70+ days. With those hopeful thoughts let's all look forward to the walks planned for the near future.
Saturday, April 14 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Meet at state game land parking lot on Gold Mine Road outside Pine Grove off Route 443. This 9.5 mile hike rated difficult led by Robin Tracey will cross the Rausch Gap. Bring a lunch and dogs are welcome if leashed and friendly to other dogs AND humans.
Sunday, April 15 from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Meet at conrad Weiser State Forest along Route 61, just north of Port Clinton. This 3-4 mile hike rated moderate led by Porcupine Pat will travel the Blue Mountain and teach about charcoal history.
Friday, April 20 at 6:30 p.m.
Meet at Crow Trail parking lot in Tuscarora State Park for a diurnal bird walk led by birder David Kruel. The walk is about 1 mile long and attendees are encouraged to bring their own binoculars. Not pet friendly. After the walk (7:30 p.m.) the group will be on the lookout for owls and woodcocks. Register by calling Robin Tracey at 570-467-2506.
Saturday, April 28 at 7:30 a.m.
Meet at Locust Lake visitor parking lot for a early morning bird walk led by John Domalakes. There may be some binoculars to borrow but everyone is encouraged to bring their own as well as a field guide. No pets please.
Saturday, April 28 from 1 pm. to 4 p.m.
Meet at parking lot of Frog Hollow, just outside of Friedensburg on Stone Mountain Road. The 2 mile hike rated easy will be led by Mike Centeleghe to explore the spring wildflowers of Frog Hollow.
Have you ever tried kayaking? It's super fun, even for a not-very-athletic person like me. Just don't forget your sunblock! The water reflects the rays right back to you and before you know it -- red as a lobster! When I kayak it's just a casual meandering in circles at Locust Lake or Sweet Arrow but if you want a real kayak adventure why not join the Schuylkill Sojourn?
The 112 mile trip starts in Schuylkill Haven on June 2 and ends in Philadelphia on June 8. All the spots for the entire trip are taken but you can register for just one day on the river. Check out some information on the days available here. You have until May 25 to register but if you're interested I'd register as soon as possible so you get the day you want (also there's a late fee after May 18). This is a fun event that should be on everyone's bucket list!
Want to celebrate your Irish roots (or just Irish-ness in general)? Well you get a second chance this year thanks to our especially snowy March. In case it slipped your mind, Girardville's Irish Day Parade is this Saturday. The day starts with Mass at St. Vincent Worship Center at 10 a.m. then a parade beginning at noon. Finally there will be an outdoor celebration at Hibernian House, Beech & Line Streets.
The Anthracite Philharmonic Orchestra is performing at St. Ambrose Roman Catholic Church on Sunday, April 15 at 3 p.m. In addition to the Overture of The Barber of Seville the concert will also feature the premier of Piano Concerto #1, written and performed by Jason Brauer, a junior at Blue Mountain High School. Tickets are $20.
But first we have the Les Brown Big Band Weekend that last for three days - April 13 to 15. It starts with a dance on April 13 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Tower city American Legion post hall featuring the M&J Big Band. Admission is $10 and includes snacks. Head to Williams Valley High School on April 14 for more music from noon to 4 p.m. performed by big bands from around the state. Admission is $10 but free for students elementary through college. On April 15 things will take a more spiritual turn with a non-denominational service at 3 p.m. at St. Paul's Lutheran church, tower City with music by Heart & Soul, Hamburg. Freewill offerings will be accepted.