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No. 103 February 1, 2010



Mt. Gretna at midwinter
A time to pause. . .

A specialist in sociological trends among older Americans noted in an interview last month that many people, as they age, tend to disengage from their involvement with others. "Older people have the lowest volunteer rate of any group in the country," said author, psychologist and gerontologist Ken Dychtwald.

While many readers may have zipped right past that revelation when it appeared in the paper, it grabbed our attention like the 80-ft. oak tree which recently came crashing down outside our window.

Volunteer energies not only fuel 90% of what goes on in Mt. Gretna, but census studies also confirm that more than 25% of us are past the age of 60. And since Mt. Gr
A time to pauseetna heavily depends on the strength, enthusiasm and availability of volunteers, any warning signal that our stream of willing workers may be drying up sets off alarms.

Although the volunteer tradition stretches back over a century here, it's also true that in recent years, appeals for volunteers have become more frequent, sometimes more plaintive, and occasionally more urgent.

It was not always so.

A conversation last summer with Tom and Edie Miller reminded us of differences that have occurred in the space of just a few years. Before they retired to North Carolina, the Millers -- together with friends Jane and Scott Zellers and Jay and Deb Barhart -- launched an impressive string of notable endeavors: everything from organizing a classic car show and establishing a butterfly garden on the Campmeeting grounds to starting the Heritage Festival, the collectors' coffee mug series, the fire company cookbooks and the annual soup cook-offs -- traditions that, for the most part, continue today.  

Indeed, the impact of volunteers is manifest throughout this community: Dr. Carl Ellenberger, launching the nationally renowned Music at Gretna festival here nearly 40 years ago, Dr. David Bronstein and Mary Hoffman nurturing Gretna Theatre through trying ordeals that tested the theater's very survival, and dozens of others, from those who run Mt. Gretna's sparkling summer programs to the fire department volunteers who guard our lives and property. From the capable managers of our art show and Cicada Festival to those who invest their talents and energies in the community library, the Mt. Gretna Arts Council, the Mt. Gretna Area Historical Society, the Bible Festival and many others. All would utterly wither and die without the life-sustaining energies of volunteers.

We may sometimes wonder how it all happens, this cornucopia of activities flowing from a surprisingly small cadre of contributors. Not merely financial supporters, but particularly those who roll up their sleeves and do the work. Occasionally, a disquieting thought arises: How -- maybe even whether -- will it always continue?

A dwindling stream of volunteers as we age? Here in midwinter -- in this deceptively busy season when plans pile high for yet another seaso
A time to pausen ahead, it is a question that deserves both pause and pondering.

Whether we are young or old, whether we live in the center of town or in Mt. Gretna's outlying neighborhoods, whether we are here year-round or only part of the time, it is we who hold the future in our hands.

And if we are to preserve the very qualities that first attracted us to this place, it is we who must answer the question: If not us, who? If not now, when?



Mt. Gretna Wildlife Update
From the Bird Club comes a report that Mt. Gretna's two most famous fowls are faring the fros
A time to pausety winter in fine fettle. Ichabod, the misguided sandhill crane, whose GPS system somehow went awry and brought him down for a landing last fall in unfamiliar territory at Mt. Gretna's abandoned ice dam, still wonders where he took a wrong turn. Nevertheless, he's "looking quite fine," reports bird club member Evelyn Koppel.
On Ms. Koppel's return from a recent bird-seeking adventure
A time to pause, Ms. Koppel also spotted Doodle, the street-smart uncatchable rooster, making his rounds outside the pizzeria in search of cheese curls, his favorite, which waitress Rose Bair often scatters outside the pickup window. (Mt. Gretna's bird club meets every Friday morning at nine, at Governor Dick Park nature center's parking lot, off Pinch Road. Email the club for details.)
Mt. Gretna's other celebrity? That's Penny, the Penn Realty groundhog. She'll be out at her usual spot tomorrow, serving
Penny Groundhogcoffee, donuts, and good cheer as she searches, once again, for a shadow before issuing her prediction on just how much longer this winter will last. Icky, Doodle and Mt. Gretna's Florida-hibernating snowbirds are waiting for that verdict.
 (Ichabod photo: Barry Runk, Grant Heilman photography)



In Other News

Plans for that new water park at Cornwall
, about four miles from Mt. Gretna, continue apace. Barring unexpected roadblocks, construction on the $250 million project could begin as early as next year.
And if the vast complex goes forward as currently envisioned, in abo 15 years the result would be nearly 600 new homes, a marina, shops and offices -- plus the year-round indoor water park and hotel (inset, left) that officials say would be included in the first phase of a five-stage construction project.
Last month, they outlined plans to confine construction vehicles to Route 322, banning trucks from Cornwall borough roadways, the Lebanon Daily News
Traffic congestion would likely become the major concern for Mt. Gretna-bound motorists if the 570-acre complex becomes a reality. One Allentown reader who owns a Campmeeting cottage recently wrote to express fears that the would create summertime traffic problems like those surrounding  Dorney Park, where his permanent home is located. Other Mt. Gretnans have voiced similar concerns. 
A spokesman for park developer Haines & Kibblehouse, Inc. last month praised the Borough's ad hoc committee approach in clearing hurdles to get the venture underway. "I've never seen a borough so transparent with a project like this," said H&K coordinator Paul Callahan. Meanwhile, Borough officials have begun posting meeting minutes concerning the development, called "The Preserve at Historic Cornwall Village," at their


Dave Turner's Armchair Adventure:
Discovering New Life in an Old Tree

The best entertainment is seldom on TV, says Dave Turner, who has lived at the foot of Conewago Hill for the past 20 years.  The best shows, he feels, often appear outdoors, especially in the aging tree right outside his living room.

A time to pauseh his big picture window, he sees birds such as Northern flickers (left), a hawk (right), plus a veritable parade (below) oBird photo 2f owls, bluebirds, squirrels, raccoons and pileated woodpeckers that have taken up residence in the tree over the past five years.

All that time, Mr. Turner has patiently focused his automatic camera on the pageant unfolding outside his Lakeview Drive home.

The trick to getting good pictures, he says, is to keep his 18-power zoom lens camera handy, ready at a moment's notice to capture events evolving on the front lawn. "It's best if I can shoot right through the window. Then, I'm not as apt to spook them," he says.
A time to pauseA time to pauseA time to pauseOwl in Mr. Turner's tree

Capturing the digital images isn't easy, however. A magnificent eagle that swooped down onto a limb got away before Mr. Turner could grab his camera. Some turkeys also quickly vanished last winter, leaving only their tracks in the snow.

And he missed getting clear focus on what would have been an engaging close-up: a palatably disgusted owl glaring from his perch in a nearby tree. Glowering at a raccoon that had just chased him from a comfortable knothole where she planned to spawn her young, "that owl was obviously mad," says Mr. Turner.

A former trade school teacher who taught electrical work to Dauphin Technical School students for 27 years before retiring two years ago, he now keeps busy doing part-time work for the State of Pennsylvania. He is also the volunteer manager of Harrisburg's 1,200-seat Scottish Rite Cathedral  auditorium, at the  Masonic organization where his wife Linda manages the office.



For Homebuyers: The Best of Times
The pace of real estate activity slipped last year to roughly half the levels of five years ago as housing prices hit their lowest level in years. That's good news for buyers, say Fred Schaeffer2three prominent Mt. Gretna realtors.
Mt. Gretna Realty's Fred Schaeffer (right), who compiles annual statistics that include both private sales and those handled by realtors through the official MultiListing system, thinks this is a "great time to buy -- at the bottom before prices start going up, which they most certainly will."
Real estate veteran Emi Snavely of Brownstone Realty agrees, adding that in
Emi Snavelyher view Mt. Gretna is one of the best places to live in the United States. "First-time buyers are likely to never again have a break like they have right now," she says.
And Penn Realty owner Joe Wentzel (below) points out that "buyers today are in tune with what properties should be selling for, with the information they need at their fingertips on the Internet."
Among prospective buyers' current advantages, says Mr.
A time to pauseSchaeffer, are a large inventory of available homes this spring and, for many, a 10% federal tax credit on contracts signed before April 30.
All three local realtors, however, counsel sellers to have realistic expectations. Says Mr. Schaeffer: "Be sure your property is in move-in condition and priced right for the current market, or it will not sell." Adds Mr. Wentzel, "The best advice I could give a seller right now: Listen to your realtor. Do not overprice your home."

Last Year -- for the First Time -- a 12% Drop in Mt. Gretna Home Prices

Roger Chart

Source: Mt. Gretna Realty


Becky Davis, celebrating her The Summit40th birthday on New Year's Eve atop Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania with husband Tom Poremba.
For the Muhlenberg Avenue couple, it was the second ascent into the stratosphere. In 2006, they scaled 14,400-ft. Mt. Rainier in Washington with fellow Mt
Porembas in Africa. Gretnan Fred Schaeffer.
But for Ms. Davis, who has lived in Mt. Gretna for 10 years and grew up traveling to distant spots around the world with her father, reaching Kilimanjaro's 19,341-foot peak after a seven-day climb fulfilled the dream of a lifetime.
Her husband describes the moment when they got to the top: "A wave of emotion swept over us. My wife, along with several others, began crying. The view, the sense of being at the summit was euphoric. Everything had a silver glow," he said. 
Active athletes who met while training for a Mt. Gretna Triathlon and got married four years ago, they needed only about three months to get in condition for their East African adventure.
When they're not traveling or hiking, she directs administrative operations at a Lancaster law firm. He helps coordinate production activities at M&M Mars in Elizabethtown. They are also the couple that holds those famous "regifting" parties for about 40 friends every year after Christmas, an occasion where everyone exchanges brightly wrapped gifts they don't want, can't use and would like to shed.

What's next on their list? Maybe a trip to the Patagonia region of Argentina, or perhaps Mt. Everest. But only to the Everest base camp. "I like having fun," says the 52-year-old Mr. Poremba, "but I don't want to kill myself in the process."

Kilimanjaro summit at dusk: Tom Poremba

Growing weary of gray skies and frosty temperatures? Take a
Art Show memoriesmidwinter break with this You Tube video from "Palmyra Network News," capturing a day at the Mt. Gretna art show last August, with a cameo appearance by "Paris Hilton" and others you will probably recognize.

Chris Kaag, whose Mt. Gretna triathlons have raised $160,000 for medical research over the past six years, getting happily splattered in paintball competition last month.
The Marine veteran, unable to walk for the past decade, described the experience in his blog,
"Get Up and Move."
A "no excuses" guy, Mr. Kagg not only believes there are no limitations, he goes out and proves it.
A time to pauseHis favorite motto, which he learned as a Marine: "Improvise. Adapt. Overcome."
When a friend invited him to join 60 others in good-natured paintball combat, Mr. Kagg figured, "I can't walk, but I can still shoot." So he became a sniper for his team.
"Crawling on the ground, getting dirty and shooting paintballs made me feel like I didn't have any limits," he says.  "There's always something you can do. It might not be the same as you did it before, but it's as good as you want to make it," says the young man who last month told a Reading Eagle reporter that when it comes to
reaching fitness goals, emotions are every bit as important as physical conditioning.  
His "Got the Nerve" triathlon in Mt. Gretna May 22 will likely add another $20,000 to his totals for research into neuromuscular diseases like the one that crippled him over a decade ago.  But, like Vince Lombardi, he believes, "It's not whether you get knocked down, but whether you get back up."



March 19th won't be the first time that Gretna Music audiences have h a performance on a night immediately before the same group  appears in Carnegi Hall.
Nor will it be the first time that a chamber orchestra has assembled on a Gretna Music stage.
But it will be the first time that audiences here have heard an outsized chamber orchestra with players whose
concentrated attention is so finely attuned to one another that they don't even want a conductor.
That, plus the appearance of cellist Alisa Weilerstein, just back from
performances last December with Venezuela's famed Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra, the White House, and the Cleveland and Philadelphia Orchestras make this one of the most anxiously awaited, and costly, events in Gretna Music's long list of notable concerts.
The Orpheus Chamber Orchestra concert will be presented at Gretna Music's winter venue, Leffler Performance Hall at Elizabethtown College. Although tickets to a pre-concert dinner are already sold out, a few remain for the Annual Gala Buffet at the home of college president and Mrs. Theodore Long.
To inquire about tickets for the buffet, concert or both, call 717-361-1508 or visit the
Gretna Music website. Early orders are advised. Because of the unusually high expenses associated with this concert, Gretna Music officials are applying a full-court press to assure that this event will be another winter season sell-out.



Leave it to Nancy Mitchell to come up with another bright idea to raise money for Mt. Gretna's firefighters -- just in time for Valentine's Day. A time to pause
At La Cigale, the North American headquarters of the French Provencial linens company she operates with her husband John along Route 117, they're offering special scented candles that she discovered on a trip to a Virginia candle factory.
WoodWick candles, with natural wicks made of organic wood that crackle like a soothing fireplace, also yield $5 for every candle sold for the fire company's current "burn the mortgage" campaign. 
La Cigale is open Tuesdays and Thursdays 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays 11:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. and other days by appointment (964-3313). Email:



 Works by Mt. Gretna artists Eva Stina Bender and Lou Schellenberg appear in the current "Figure Eight" exhibit at Elizabethtown College. They are among eight artists chosen to participate in the showingA time to pause.
Ms. Bender, one of the exhibitors in Mt. Gretna's first art show 35 years ago, is also among 12 artists whose works will be featured in
Lynden Gallery's 10th year anniversary exhibition, "Figures, Chocolate and Jazz" Feb. 12-Apr. 10. Open to "accidents and surprises," she prefers to paint "on the spot," completing a work in a single sitting, notes a press announcement for the event. She is also exhibiting her work Feb. 6-28 at Lancaster's Demuth Museum, along with art show co-founder Reed Dixon and other noted local artists.
Ms. Schellenberg, an associate professor of art at Elizabethtown who often summers in Nova Scotia, says in an
artist's statement that she tries "to carry the viewer's eye through a painting as one might navigate actual space." Among several places where her works may be seen locally are Lynden Gallery in Elizabethtown and the Lancaster Arts Hotel Gallery.



Cicada MusicSix concerts in a five-day festival? Yes, that's because for the first time ever, the Cicada Festival is this year scheduling both matinee and evening performances on Aug. 12 for The Grassroots featuring Rob Gill (a mid-60s group that sold 30 million records, hitting Billboard's charts in 307 straight weeks). Opening both performances will be Rock n' Roll oldies band, the Mudflaps.
The budget-priced entertainment series ($11 for all tickets) starts Tuesday night, Aug. 10 with one of last year's sell-outs,
Phil Dirt and the Dozers. The following night will be a new show, Pittsburgh's Billy Price Band, playing "all of Mr. Price's original music," says organizer Ceylon Leitzel.
The five-day festival closes the following week with
The Fabulous Hubcaps Aug. 16 and the Hershey Symphony's "Salute to Broadway" Aug. 17.
Order forms will appear online at
a new website around Mar. 15, coinciding with mailings of the 2010 season brochure. Although orders may be placed at any time, tickets will not be mailed to buyers until May.
The festival has already received a 55-ticket order for the Aug. 12 matinee, suggesting that event will likely sell out quickly. Last year, in fact, the Cicada Festival sold 97% of the 3,500 tickets available for its entire five-day run.
Cicada's ticket office processes orders based on earliest postmark dates, and volunteers encourage generous donations since, even with sold-out performances, ticket revenues fall short of the festival's actual costs. 
Mail orders for the shows should be addressed to Mt. Gretna Cicada Festival, P.O. Box 637, Mt. Gretna, PA 17064.



Suddenly, swarms of buzzards overhead 








Mt. Gretna's buzzard patrol has its hands full once again and can use more volunteers.

"We seem to have a substantial turkey vulture population again," says coordinator Max Hunsicker, who has led a decade-long campaign to encourage the birds to roost in places other than Mt. Gretna. Until this year, that effort had been extraordinarily successful, one of the best, in fact, ever seen by USDA veterans. 

The relentless effort by a small group of volunteers  -- which the jocular Mr. Hunsicker sometimes calls "The Few,  The Proud, The Buzzard Busters" -- pursued a carefully planned strategy to not merely shoo the birds to another part of town but to chase them to unpopulated areas lacking vulnerable rooftops, automobile paint and homeowners' gardens.

Mr. Hunsicker says that although some people apparently want to help and are now attempting to scare the birds away on their own, they are not part of his campaign, which emphasizes coordinated efforts among trained volunteers to produce the most effective results.  

He reports that areas where the turkey vultures have concentrated recently have been in the Campmeeting pine belt, behind the Playhouse, west of the lake between Conewago Hill and Timber Bridge, behind the Timber Hills apartments and around the Mt. Gretna roller rink. He welcomes volunteers and invites inquiries to join in the effort. Email:



 When the watercolor "Mt. Gretna Canoes" suddenly turned up on the Daily Painters of Pennsylvania website last month -- along with works by Andy Smith and others  familiar to Mt. Gretna art show attendees -- readers asked, "Who is Linda Young?"
A Carlisle resid
Canoes Linda Young watercolorent who learned the "art through music" concept under noted local instructor Larry Lombardo, Ms. Young had, in fact, never been to Mt. Gretna before she and her husband came to hear jazz artist Leon Redbone at the Playhouse last August.
Once here, however, she fell in love with the cottage-lined streets, the laughter of children at the lake, and a colorful assortment of canoes lying along the bank.  "I wouldn't mind living in this place,"she said t
Artist Linda Youngo her husband (a champion hill climb enthusiast and friend of Mt. Gretna hill climb racer and former Millersville University art department chairman Gordon Wise). 
She took several photos and last month finished this piece, part of a "small works" project in a
growing collection since she began painting in 2004.
It may have been her first Mt. Gretna visit, but she intends to return. "As I walked along the streets, realizing that this is where they hold the outdoor art show, I said to myself, 'Someday I'm going to be in that show.'"



Mt. GretnaFire Dept Update's firefighters responded to 208 calls last year, about 5% more than the 198-calls-per-year they have averaged over the past five years.
Fire company president Joe Shay says that although the number of calls has generally been increasing over the years, that total actually declined last year from 2008, when Mt. Gretna Station 38 answered 221 calls, the most ever in a single year.
In all, the 51 men and women of Mt. Gretna's fire company gave 6,530 hours of service to the community in 2009. That's like giving more than two years of eight-hour days. They turn in similar totals each year -- fighting fires, assisting in medical emergencies, training to sharpen life-saving skills or attending to duties such as fund-raising or attending to administrative details. Fire chief Bob Dowd devoted 769 hours to his tasks, the equivalent of 96 eight-hour days, says Mr. Shay, who is also Mt. Gretna's mayor.
Area residents curious about where emergencies are taking place may track calls online at
The fire company is currently in the midst of the largest fund-raising drive in its history -- a $400,000 "burn the mortgage" campaign to pay off the 2,300- square-foot addition needed to house larger firefighting equipment modern safety standards require and also replace older engines now nearing the end of their useful lives.
"No, the midst of a recession is not a good time to be asking for extra contributions," admits campaign chairman Tom Mayer, "but we have no choice. These needs could simply not be postponed."
He says that people throughout the country are being asked to consider making memorial contributions in the names of loved ones or others that helped create special memories here, often when they were growing up in Mt. Gretna. "Many of those gifts will earn a place on our 'Wall of Honor' (for gifts of $500, $1,000, $2,500 or $10,000)," he said. Indeed, one gift totaling $30,000 was received recently, along with others in the $5,000 and $12,500 category, nudging the campaign ever closer toward its goal.
Tax deductible contributions may be mailed to Mt. Gretna Fire Company, P.O. Box 177, Mt. Gretna, Pa. 17064. Information concerning bequests, multi-year pledges and other large gifts is available from Mr. Mayer, 964-1987 or e-mail



Organ concerts in Mt. Gretna's Thursdays-in-July organ recital series this year. That's because there are five Thursdays in July, and the sixth concert will actually take place in the Playhouse on Thursday, Aug. 1, rather than at the Hewitt-McAnney home on Princeton Avenue, where the popular recitals Organist Christian Lanehave occurred since 1998.
Opening the series July 1: Harvard assistant organist and choirmaster Christian Lane, who has also performed at St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York City, St. John's College Chapel in Cambridge, England, and the National Cathedral, Washington, DC. Before he was 21, Mr. Lane had won four major American organ events, including the 2000 Albert Schweitzer competition

7th  In that end-of-summer-dance-party-at-the-lake series, "Music Under the Stars." Now a modern Mt. Gretna tradition, it will be held this year on Saturday, Aug. 28, with music by "Nitrophonic," a group that event organizer Ceylon Leitzel describes Music Under the Starsas a spin-off of the Hershey Big Band.
Advance discount tickets ($18 each for mail orders: Music Under the Stars, P.O. Box 202, Mt. Gretna, PA 17064) are now on sale, with reserved tables available for groups of eight or more.
Proceeds from the event annually go to Mt. Gretna area non-profit  organizations, which have included the fire and ambulance companies, Heritage Festival, Bible Festival and Mt. Gretna's United Methodist Church. For additional details, telephone 717-866-4274 or 964-1829, or email:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ classes for four- to 10-year-olds this spring? That's a distinct possibility, depending on how many youngsters sign up for a Mt. Gretna Arts Council-inspired project this spring with S.P.L.A.T., an organization of "Spirited People Learning Artfulness Together."
Organizer Jessica Kosoff says that if there's enough interest, they will hold classes at the Mt. Gretna fire hall Mar. 21 and 28; April 11, 18, 25 and May 9. For details, drop her an e-mail at

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~, it's another inspiration by Rhoda Long, planning more events to raise funds for Mt. Gretna's firefighters, and, in the process, give Mt. Gretnans and their friends a chance to savor a spring day in Manhattan.
Her bus trip to see the Rockettes last December was such a big hit that she promised to do it again.
This time, it's a "day on your own" excursion that will leave from the Mt. Gretna parking lot April 24 at 7:30 a.m. and depart New York City at 7:30 p.m.
Ms. Long says that she is still working out the details, but this and future trips will all be fire company fundraisers: yet another way to help "Burn the Mortgage" on that new fire house addition and fill a spring afternoon with fun. The cost: $45. For details: e-mail; (tel. 717-304-0248)

Photo: New York City Dept. Parks and Recreation



Apron collector Edith Lehman kicks off the 2010 series of WinteritesApron Authority at February Winterites Meeting meetings tomorrow (Feb. 2.) Mrs. Lehman, an authority on vintage aprons and handkerchiefs, will show items from her extensive collection at the meeting, which also happens to be the Winterites' 60th anniversary. The session begins at 1:00 p.m. at the Mt. Gretna fire hall.
In March, Chautauqua resident Kathy Snavely presents an illustrated talk on her trip to the Canadian Rockies. Winterites meet on first Tuesdays of each month, September through April (except January).



Advertising deadline for this year's Arts Council Summer calendar: Mar. 12.  Coordinator Jim Burchik says rates remain unchanged from last year: $500 for inside full-page ads, $750 for inside cover ads and $250 for half-page ads. 

Patron listings deadline: Feb. 19.

Forms for patron listings ($35), which each year help underwrite production costs for the 9,000 summer calendars distributed locally and to addressees on a national mailing list, are available online at

For additional details, telephone Mr. Burchik, 964-3834 (H) or 481-6006 (O); email



Questions Readers Ask
[] I have a question that I think about each time I take my five-year-old to our Chautauqua playground.  That is, what is happening to the swings?  We are down from five regular swings to two, plus the red handicap swing.  Can you please shed some light on the missing swings' disappearance and any plans to replace them?
<> The playground equipment falls under the purview of Chautauqua's buildings and grounds committee, which is meeting tonight (Feb. 1). Swing repairs are on the agenda, and replacment funding is said to be in the budget.
Meanwhile, the Campmeeting recently completed work on a fully equipped playground which is considered a community playground. Parents and children throughout Mt. Gretna are welcome there.

[] What are the rules governing use of the tennis courts in Mt. Gretna?
<> The courts are available to anyone wishing to join the Mt. Gretna Men's Club. Membership is open to all Mt. Gretna residents for an initiation fee of $50. Persons living outside Mt. Gretna pay a $100 initiation fee. Membership dues for both residents and nonresidents are $80 annually. 
Mt. Gretna residents who do not play tennis but wish to have access to the pavilion and shuffleboard courts pay membership dues of $15 annually.
Club president William Brandt invites anyone interested in joining the club to call him at 964-3436. Court times are not reserved, but if both courts are busy,  courtesy rules apply: players simply finish their set and yield to newcomers. The courts normally open in April and close in October. Other club activities include a tennis tournament in July, a tennis clinic for juniors and a breakfast at the annual art show in August.

John J. Marisic (1946-2010)

It is the mark of a life well lived when it can be said of a man that he always had good things to say about others. 
John Marisic
John Marisic, who died at 63 last month and had lived on Batdorf Avenue, was such a man. "He was a kind person who embraced life," said neighbor Trish Lamont.
Jan Lasyer, another neighbor, recalls that "In 25 years, we never heard him speak badly of anyone. He simply enjoyed seeing people happy and would seize upon nearly any occasion to hold spontaneous neighborhood parties" -- which sometimes included Bastille Day, the Fourth of July, even Beaujolais Day (to celebrate the grape harvest in France.)
Shown above in a photo taken after a fundraising event last summer for the Campmeeting's newly refurished playground, which he helped organize, John Marisic was a native of Harrisburg, the husband of Sally Cox Marisic and the father of their two daughters, both now living in Washington, D.C. He was a U.S. Army Veteran of Vietnam and director of computing at Elizabethtown College. He was also a director of the Mt. Gretna Area Historical Society, to which contributions in lieu of flowers may be made at 206 Pennsylvania Ave., Mt. Gretna, PA 17064.  The Central Pennsylvania Food Bank, 3908 Corey Rd., Harrisburg, PA 17109 is also receiving memorial contributions in his honor.



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This newsletter is offered without charge or obligation to anyone who delights in keeping up with things that happen in Mt. Gretna. It is simply a retirement pastime, without any political or commercial ax to grind.
For us, writing is like woodworking might be for other retirees, although we try not to kick up as much dust so we can remain inside the house rather than be banished to the garage.
We don't cover everything. Some topics, we believe, are better left to daily newspapers, TV and other media.
We've been doing this for nearly ten years, usually once a month unless we're traveling, ailing or attending to household duties that the Secretary of Domestic Affairs deems a higher priority (read: Take out the trash, Fix the bathroom light, or Get her car serviced).
Our hope is that others will enjoy reading this newsletter maybe half as much as we enjoy writing it. And we thank the many Mt. Gretnans who help us gather the news, take the photos, and (most of the time) stay out of trouble.  

Thanks to the folks at
Gretna Computers, you can always find back issues of this newsletter on the Web.
Kindest regards,
Roger Groce


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