County offering cool options for summer

If you need to beat the heat, the county has you covered — but a popular pool in Scranton won’t be open this year.

The McDade Park pool will not be open due to safety issues based on an inspection by and the recommendation from the county engineer.

However, swimming is now open at the lakes at Covington, Merli-Sarnoski, and Aylesworth parks. People can swim at their own risk for free and utilize the parks’ facilities until dusk.

Another way to stay cool this summer? Take a tour at the county’s Coal Mine attraction. It stays about 52 degrees at the mine in McDade Park. The tour open Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., with the last excursion beginning at 2:45 p.m. For further information, contact the parks’ office at 570-963-6764.

Groups get county grants

Hose companies and municipalities received Community Re-Invest Program grants, the county announced this month.

The Community Re-Invest Program was established in July of 2013. It represents the “last mile” funding to help bring the initiatives to fruition. The overall public-private investment since its inception is $8,858,656.

The projects that were approved for the first round of funding for 2021 include:

  • Archbald Borough Veterans Monument Park LLC, $5,000 for the erection of veterans’ monument.
  • Queen City Hose Co. No. 8, $5,000 for communication equipment upgrade.
  • Blakely Borough, $5,000 for a police department technology upgrade.
  • Blakely Hose Co. No, 2, $5,000 for a heat alarm and security camera system.
  • Blakely Community Ambulance, $5,000 for a heat alarm and security camera system.
  • Archbald Borough, $4,191 for a playground equipment upgrade.
  • Wilson Fire Co. No. 1, $5,000 for a heat alarm and security camera system.
  • Dunmore Borough, $5,000 for Bucktown Musicfest.
  • St. Anthony’s Memorial Park, $5,000 for concession stand improvements.

Blue Zones experts to host talk

Members of the national Blue Zones Project will lead a presentation and discussion about community health and well-being at the Scranton Half Marathon Pavilion on the Lackawanna River Heritage Trail in Scranton at 4 p.m. June 24.

Members of the public are invited.

Blue Zones are places in the world of exceptional health, where people live to 100 years old at three to five times the U.S. rate. In a study conducted last year, the Blue Zones Project found that Lackawanna, Luzerne and Wyoming counties could save $952 million in medical, productivity and regional economic impact costs over 10 years through improvements in community well-being.

Having completed a site assessment last month, the Blue Zones Project will present recommendations to transform regional health based on strengths and opportunities specific to NEPA.

A group of 12 organizations, led by Valley in Motion of Mayfield, is working to make NEPA the next Blue Zone project area. Geisinger Health Plan, Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield, Lackawanna County, Lehigh Valley Health Network, and VaxServe sponsored the NEPA Blue Zones site assessment.

The event will be held outside, under a pavilion, with appropriate safety protocols in place. The Scranton Half Marathon Pavilion is at 4 W. Olive St. in Scranton. The event will be held rain or shine.

College recognized for fundraising efforts

Several Midvalley and Upvalley residents were among a team recognized for being the no. 2 fundraiser in the country for a foundation that helps kids with cancer.

Lackawanna College’s Pinky Swear Ambassadors on College Campuses to Help Kids with Cancer were honored at

a virtual ceremony held by the Pinky Swear Foundation.

The Lackawanna College team raised $4,200 by hosting a basket raffle that included a large spring-inspired basket valued at over $400 including gift cards, chocolate, and surprises donated by Lackawanna College PACK students. It was the first fundraiser the college group held; it raised the second-highest amount of 69 Pinky Swear chapters around the country.

“We are always amazed at the incredible passion and dedication of our Pinky Swear PACK members,” said Frankie Behr, Pinky Swear Foundation student leadership manager. “The efforts seen from the Lackawanna (grpup) are incredibly creative and we are even more excited that every dollar they raised will actually be tripled thanks to our partners at KLN Family Brands and a generous family foundation.”

Members of the Lackawanna College group include Jessica Johnson of Jessup, Cori Pietruszkiewicz of Throop, Dana Bellas of Carbondale, Lori Beggin of Throop and Erika Norkaitis, Dickson City.

Ride a trolley to RailRiders game

There’s a new way to get to certain RailRiders games.

The Electric City Trolley Museum is once again offering fans a ride to PNC Field on a trolley.

The price of the excursion and baseball admission ticket is $20 per person. If you already have a ticket to the game, the trolley ride is just $11. Reservations are required.

Trolley rides will be available for the June 20 game against Syracuse, July 11 against Syracuse, July 25 against Rochester, Aug. 8 against Worcester, Aug. 15 against Lehigh Valley, Sept. 5 against Buffalo, Sept. 12 against Rochester and Sept. 19 against Lehigh Valley.

For each excursion, the trolley departs at 12:15 p.m. Games begin at 1:05 p.m.

For more information, contact the museum at 570-963-6590.