An organization that was formed to monitor streams and rivers across Potter County for signs of degradation due to shale gas drilling or other earth disturbance is actively recruiting additional volunteers. “God’s Country Water Dogs” provides free training and supplies for the corps of volunteers who sample designated sections of waterways and report their findings on a centralized database.
Next meeting and training session is scheduled for Saturday, March 8, from 1 pm to 3:30 pm at the Gunzburger Building in Coudersport. Those attending should use the Water Street entrance. All members and other individuals interested in joining the organization are welcome. Ashlynn Beacker, a student at Lycoming College, will share results of her survey of benthic macroinvertebrates throughout Potter County. These are “indicator species” that can be used to measure a stream’s health. Julie Vastine from the Alliance for Aquatic Resources Monitoring and her students from Dickinson College will discuss methods for logging data collected from local streams. Those seeking more information about God’s Country Water Dogs should contact Loren Fitzgerald at email@example.com.
One of the nation’s most highly respected private schools for needy children continues an outreach effort in the northcentral Pennsylvania counties. Representatives from Milton Hershey School are appealing to families in need, social service agencies, local church and community leaders and area professionals to recruit new students. A free informational program on Milton Hershey School, including a dinner, will be held at 6 pm Tuesday, March 11, at Potato City Country Inn in Potter County. No registration is required and family members, including prospective students, are welcome. For more details, call 1-800-322-3248.
Milton Hershey School is a cost-free residential school in Hershey that was started for orphan boys by Mr. and Mrs. Hershey. It now serves more than 1,800 boys and girls from financially and/or socially needy situations. “The school provides a positive, structured home life and quality education for pre-kindergarten through grade 12, at no cost to the needy,” explained admissions counselor Mark Brezitski. “Tens of thousands of lives have been changed for the better at Milton Hershey School.” Children are accepted year-round through a rolling admissions policy.
A limited number of copies of the latest edition of the Shale Gas Roundup remain available. A product of the Natural Gas Resource Center, it brings a local perspective to major developments that will affect the region for years to come. A downloadable version of the February/March 2014 edition is available on the website, pottercountypa.net (click on the Natural Gas tab to access this and all past editions). Copies can be printed directly from the website. They are also available as supplies last at the Commissioners Office in the Gunzburger Building. Contact Dawn Swatsworth at 814-274-8290, Ext. 207, to arrange for pickup. The February/March edition includes a new, more attractive layout style. Among the featured stories are:
- More Drilling Wastewater Injection Wells Coming
- Limiting Gas Drilling Impact On Landscapes, Habitat
- President Obama, Trade Group Stress Balanced Approach To Shale Gas
- Drill Cuttings May Be Used For Roads, Well Pads
- Most In Poll Say They Favor Shale Gas Development
- Keeping Public Water Suppliers In The Loop
- Pa. State Energy Plan Emphasizes Economic Potential
- More Gas Wells Coming On State Forest, Park Lands
- Shale Gas Drillers Improving Efficiencies, Cutting Costs
Care packages for active-duty military service members are being assembled by the Potter County Office of Veterans Affairs for dispatch in the coming weeks. “These campaigns are popular over the holidays, but our service men and women serve year-around,” said Will Worthington, director of veterans affairs for Potter County. Family members or friends of service members who would appreciate packages are encouraged to provide names and mailing addresses. Donations of cash and care package items are especially needed. Financial donations will be used to cover shipping costs. Among the items that are being packed are snacks, personal care items, reading materials, writing supplies, playing cards, DVDs, video games, compact discs and games.
“We’re also encouraging people to send cards or personal letters to our service members,” Worthington said. “This would be a good project for school students or youth organizations.” As a retired soldier who served in the Persian Gulf, Worthington knows first-hand how much the care packages are appreciated. “It’s especially nice to know that you’re not forgotten and that someone appreciates your service,” he observed. “Some of the conditions our service men and women have to endure are not pleasant. Getting a care package can really brighten their day.” The Potter County team is coordinating the local campaign with Goodies for our Troops, a certified non-profit organization based in Tioga County. More information is available from Will Worthington at 274-8290, extension 210, or Charlotte Dietrich at 274-8254.
A program on public transportation options available to Potter County seniors will be presented at 1 pm Thursday, March 6, at the Coudersport Senior Center. It’s located in the Coudersport Volunteer Fire Department Training Center, near the firehall off Rt. 6 west.
Information on programs run by the Area Transportation Authority, American Cancer Society, Potter County Veterans Affairs, Western Alliance and Potter County Human Services will be available. For more information, call 274-7887.
Training for individuals interested in applying for grants from government agencies or foundations is being offered at the Potter County Education Council office in Coudersport, in partnership with University of Pittsburgh at Bradford. A session on basic grant application skills will be held on Wednesday, March 19, from 5:30 pm to 9:30 pm. An optional follow-up class with in-depth information and sample budget preparation is scheduled for Wednesday, April 2, from 5:30 to 9:30 pm. Cost for each session is $69. For more details, call Pitt-Bradford at 814-362-5078.