Category Archives: People & Interests

Vet of the Month: Diana Casper

Diana trained at Fort Jackson and Fort Lee, serving in Alaska and Iraq. A flag was flown in Iraq in Diana’s honor after she assisted in battling two fires with Engine Company 311 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in May 2009. She has been awarded the following medals and ribbons: Army Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal with Campaign
Star, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon.

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Fellowship of Reconciliation: A movement for social justice within our community

In the 1970s, FOR came to Scranton, Pennsylvania. This reporter had the opportunity to attend the April meeting and was eagerly welcomed into the group. The ten attendees introduced themselves and shared why the organization is important to them. Each member has a specific issue for which they advocate, from prison reform to environmental issues to women’s rights, and all are willing to work together to assist their colleagues in addressing these issues.

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Woodford Reserve: A Bourbon review

There are many self-proclaimed Bourbon experts out there . . . heck, you can find an expert on the art of buying a new notebook these days, but I am not one of them. I am simply a hedonist, who very much enjoys a fine sip of bourbon and a tasty cigar. Granted, I enjoy much more than that, especially when it comes to libations. A rich craft beer, a smooth vodka, and a spicy rum are all on my list of luscious (yes, “list of luscious” does actually exist) and I’m always in search of things to add to that list.

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Looking back at God and growing up in a simpler time

When I was 13, everyone in my neighborhood was just as aware of God and what he asked of them as they were of what had to be done at home every day. Yeah, there were chores that needed to be completed before meeting up with friends or talking on the phone. My mom and dad worked from 6:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. every day at one factory or another over the years — my mother nursed me on her lunch hour at the Sequoit Silk Mill. They saved five dollars every week for eight years, and were finally able to purchase their own West Scranton home in 1950 when I was nine.

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Thoughts of a penny collector

Pennies seemed ubiquitous. I saw them everywhere: from the convenience store floor, where consumers rejected their change if it happened to be less than a nickel, to a father giving his smiling youngster loose coins from his weighed-down pockets, to school children donating them into large charity jars and donation cans — or just strewn randomly on the ground, as if the copper coins were a bothersome burden.

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Teafox Illustrations: The fantasy artwork of Sarah Graybill

The tea in Teafox comes from tea painting, the method Sarah Graybill uses to create the ethereal settings of her unique fantasy illustrations. The 24-year-old Shartlesville, Pennsylvania, artist and creator of Teafox Illustrations holds a bachelor of fine arts with a concentration in illustration from Arcadia University, has work featured in the Fantasy Encyclopedia for Creators (published by Natsume, Inc), and is a fan favorite in the anime convention scene.

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Reflecting on Lent and renewal

For me, Lent is like the buds that come out every spring. Indeed, even though we think of Lent as a somber time for penance and self-denial (as is surely fitting), the fruits of our efforts at putting ourselves voluntarily aside are renewal, joy, and transformation. As we go deep inside in honest self-reflection, we can then make conscious efforts to correct our faults. As we do the hard work of “spring cleaning for our souls,” beautiful new buds soon blossom.

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Race to Heal Haiti scheduled for May 17

On Saturday, May 17, the first annual Race to Heal Haiti will be held at Nay Aug Park. The 5K run/walk will begin at 11a.m., with preregistration occurring from 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. Money raised from this event will be used to assist nursing students in Haiti to attend school for their RN degree.

This reporter had the opportunity to speak to the event organizer, Valarie Lucas, who is a junior year nursing student at the University of Scranton. Lucas first became interested in Haiti when she had the opportunity to apply for the International Service Program offered by the University. She was struck by “the sense of human connection and the community of people” that she experienced there, which she described as “the most raw form of love.” Lucas stated that the ideas of faith and community which she learned on the trip could be summarized by a quote from Mother Teresa: “If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.”

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Guys & A Beer’d Brewing Company

Unless you’ve dreamed of a life like Homer Simpson’s or Peter Griffin’s, your mom may have yelled at you a few times to get off your lazy posterior, because nothing good could ever come of sitting around with your buddies drinking suds. Your mama may not be wrong about you, but she can’t dispute the success of 3 Guys and a Beer’d Brewing Company, which started with home brews in backyards and resulted in a legitimate brewing company. The company does not have a storefront, but rents space to house the beer from wheat and hops infancy to full adult frothiness.

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