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Articles in the Featured Category

Bucks-Mont, Featured, Lehigh Valley »

[22 Dec 2010 | One Comment | ]

It’s after noon on Dec. 21 and that means there are only about 48 hours left to finish your Christmas shopping. Guys, we better get started.
I’ve always been fascinated by the difference between men and women when it comes to shopping. I’ve found that guys don’t shop, they buy. I wrote once that if you send a Fortune 500 CEO in the middle of a mall, in 20 minutes he will have bought the place, laid off half the staff, changed three leases and rewritten the rental codes. Put him …

Berks and Beyond, Featured »

[14 Dec 2010 | Comments Off on Clark Griswold Had Nothing On Koziar’s Christmas Village | ]

When I was a kid and we lived in suburban Philadelphia, there was a man near Willow Grove who really went all-out with decorating his house every Christmas. My parents would take us over to see the place and it was lit up with an enormous number of lights and moving figures that included Frosty, Snoopy and the Peanuts gang, Rudolph as well as other displays and favorites, including, of course, the Big Guy.
I never knew who the home owner was, but he was clearly a couple decades ahead of …

Featured, Lehigh Valley »

[2 Dec 2010 | Comments Off on America On Wheels “A Sparkling Little Jewel” | ]

As the mother of two young boys and calendar coordinator for her Mom’s Cub, Jennifer Jones has become somewhat of a regular at America On Wheels in Allentown. As her sons marveled at the room-sized, ‘O-Gauge’ model train platform in a second-floor gallery at the museum of over-the-road transportation, Jones said she keeps abreast of new exhibits and visits several times a year.
“We love it,” she said as the boys watched the trains and checked out the historic Soap Box Derby cars mounted on the nearby wall. “We enjoy it …

Featured, Poconos »

[17 Nov 2010 | Comments Off on There’s More To Jim Thorpe Than Bike Trails and Haunted Jails | ]

As you climb the steep steps from Hazard Square in the center of Jim Thorpe and look up the hill to the mansion that, let’s face it, looms over the borough, you may get a sense of déjà vu if you have ever visited America’s most popular tourist destination – Disney World.
The Harry Packer Mansion was the model for Disney’s Haunted Mansion and if you let your imagination run a bit, you might just see someone – or something – peeking at you from behind the curtains on the upper …

Featured »

[11 Nov 2010 | Comments Off on “… The Last Full Measure of Devotion” | ]

The first time I visited the Korean War Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. was on a misty, chilly night when I was helping to chaperone about 100 of my son’s energetic and occasionally over-dramatic high school classmates. I didn’t really know much about the memorial, so when we approached out of the fog and I saw the 19 larger-than-life statues emerge as if they were trekking through a rice paddy, it was an eerie and evocative moment.
The Korean War memorial is still one of my favorite stops when I’m in …

Bucks-Mont, Featured »

[22 Oct 2010 | One Comment | ]

I’ve always had a soft spot for people who march to a different drummer. I’m not talking about the whackos who pick up Channel 83 while the rest of us are just getting 3, 6 and 10, but the visionaries and dreamers who are not afraid of being thought a bit odd as they pursue goals that elude others.
People like Henry Mercer, for instance.
A turn-of-the-century renaissance man born in Doylestown in 1856, Mercer was a lawyer, archeologist, anthropologist and artisan who became best known for his classic tiles. But he …

Featured, Lehigh Valley, News »

[14 Oct 2010 | Comments Off on Open Gate Farm Tour Offers Family Fun and a Good Reminder | ]

The last time I heard any real numbers, the Lehigh Valley was losing farmland at a rate of about 3 square miles a year. I’m sure the current recession has put a little hitch in that giddyap, but it’s still a concern. One of the attractions of the region is the rural, open nature that has long surrounded the cities of Allentown, Bethlehem and Easton and their immediate suburbs.
But take a Sunday drive in the Valley these days and it seems the biggest cash crop over the past two decades …

Bucks-Mont, Featured, Lehigh Valley, Philadelphia »

[7 Oct 2010 | 2 Comments | ]

Several years ago I talked my editors into letting me go to Gettysburg to cover a statewide paranormal conference. Topics ranged from visual images of ghosts to electronic voice manifestations to the existence of vampires. While there, I interviewed a self-proclaimed psychic and a man who said his dog could see ghosts.
We decided to drive out to Devil’s Den, a particularly haunted section of the historic battlefield, after nightfall – which, technically, isn’t legal – to see if either the psychic or the dog could pick up any trace of …

Featured, Lehigh Valley »

[29 Sep 2010 | Comments Off on New Sigal Museum Brings Northampton County History to Life | ]

For most Americans, it seems that history goes back only about 235 years – to our own Revolutionary War. Sure, we all learned about the Pilgrims and Puritans and William Penn in school, but the real scope of history seems to escape us, as a nation. That’s why I am sure many people will be shocked to learn that Eastern Pennsylvania has been inhabited by humans for more than 12,000 years.
That’s one of the first things you learn when you enter the new Sigal Museum in Easton. A product of …

Featured, Lehigh Valley »

[21 Sep 2010 | 2 Comments | ]

When it comes to fine art, I’m pretty whitebread. OK, boring is more like it. I like portraits and landscapes. I can appreciate Norman Rockwell and Gilbert Stuart. Picasso makes me think someone was hitting the sangria a bit too hard.
That’s why I like the Allentown Art Museum. They offer a good mix of permanent exhibits, including Stuart’s portrait of Ann Penn and a great painting of Niagara Falls. But they mix it up, too. The current exhibit “Peter Grippe – A Personal Vocabulary” mixes Grippe’s modernistic sculpture with the …