MARCH INTO THE HOLIDAY SPIRIT
This year, Lock Haven held its Holiday Parade on Saturday, December 1st at 6 pm. The parade started on the corner of Main and Henderson Streets and ended at Triangle Park.
In the parade there were more than thirty floats and cars from local businesses, organizations and people in the community including SPCA, LS Kids, the Women’s Center, and Rotary.
After the Parade, refreshment was offered in Triangle Park and children had the opportunity to visit Santa Claus.
The parade was sponsored by businesses and organizations in downtown Lock Haven who also provide other entertainment throughout the holiday season including the Festival of Trees and Lunch and Story time with Santa.
The next parade in June will be the ‘Best Of Clinton County' parade, highlighting the events and accomplishments of the town. The LS Kids are planning a float to commemorate the past events they were involved with.
“It was Debbie’s idea to combine our past projects into a float. We were thinking about including something from Relay for Life, the Book Sale, and past parades,” said Lou.
TRIP TO THE FARM
On Saturday, November 17, 2007, LS Kids Meghan Rockey, Tiffany Allen and Robin Prescott, along with leader Lou and his wife Michelle, made the annual trip to Lou's dad's Christmas tree farm in Slatington, PA.
On the way to Slatington, the Kids stopped in Jim Thorpe, PA, to tour the railroad museum there. They also took a brand-new rail trail to the site of Bedbug Cave, over which stand the ruins of an old mattress factory. Lou frequented the spot when he was a teenager growing up in Slatington, and was happy to show the Kids around.
Once at the tree farm, the Kids went for a tractor ride up the hill to get the trees, which included two for the Heisey Museum where Lou works, and the trees for Lou's house and Tif's apartment. Then they had a lunch of homemade chicken soup for awhile, playing with the dogs and watching television until it was time to head home.
The Kids, as always, really enjoyed the trip, and can't wait to go again next year.
A LIVELY HOLIDAY LIVE NIGHT
Volunteering has never been so fun! Live Night is a fun and rewarding event that is held annually at the Clinton Township Community Fire Hall in Muncy, PA. This year it was held on Friday, December 7th at 6-9 pm. Those attending the event were Lou and Michelle, Debbie Benfield, Tiffany Allen, and Rachel Mazza of the LS Kids.
“It’s basically a big party for the children of the employees of C-S Group, the company that my wife Michelle, works for,” said Lou, the Heisey Museum curator and founder of the LS Kids group.
At the event, there were many holiday themed games and events for the children to participate in such as a live nativity, reindeer ring toss, a Christmas tree beanbag toss and ‘launch Santa into the chimney’. The children seemed to particularly enjoy the bowling and the rubber band gun games. There were also snacks and a prize table with lots of toys.
Upon entering the fire hall, the children also dropped off letters to Santa Claus. The letters were collected by Michelle the following Monday and the LS Kids, working as ‘Santa’s helpers’ responded to the letters in the following week.
RINGING THE BELL
On the nicest day they'd ever had with this project, the LS Kids met on Main Street to ring the bell and raise money for the Salvation Army. Though normally, the weather is terrible for this project, this year it didn't snow, hail, sleet, or anything more than simply stay cold. "If the weather holds up this way, I won't complain," commented Lou. "This is the best year we've ever had."
The Kids rang the bell on December 15, from ten to noon. Lou, Tiffany Allen, Debbie Benfield, Biz Albright, Rachel Mazza, Ericka Conklin, and Bobby Smith gave their time to raise money.
HALLOWEEN: GHOST HUNT AT THE MUSEUM
On November 3, the Heisey Museum hosted a ghost hunt with SPIRIT, the Spiritual Paranormal Intuitive Research Investigation Team. The museum raffled off a chance to participate in the investigation. The winner, Heidi Fiorill, her friend Sarah, and her mother Ursula all came from Lancaster to join in the excitement.
To start the evening, the ghost hunters explaine dthe technology they would be using and played some recordings of Ida from Lou's house. Rachel Mazza and Ericka Conklin went up to the children's bedroom to set up a Scrabble board and a chalkboard for the ghosts to leave messages. As soon as they arrived back in the west parlor, everyone broke into groups for the hunting sessions.
While in the attic, we opened the door to the mannequin room to find a nice surprise from Lou. A white baby doll was crying up at us with a disturbing face. "Normally I'm the only one who goes up there," Lou explained.
The most eventful venture of the night was in the east parlor. We discovered a large, spectral imprint on the floor by the William Raymond piano. The team did an EVP reading in there, which will yield great results.
THANKSGIVING: THE ANNUAL DINNER
On Thanksgiving day, the LS Kids gave up a part of their holiday to help someone else---For the eighth time since the group was formed.
Great Island Presbyterian Church holds a charity dinner every Thanksgiving. Every year, the Kids join in, seating people, taking coats, and serving drinks and food. The LS Kids began doing this in 2000, the first year the group began, and have done it every year since.
This year, Lou, Tiffany Allen, Debbie Benfield, Shelby Sander, Robin Prescott, Cris Miller, and Mike Schedin all came to meet two of the new Kids, Rachel Mazza and Bobby Smith. Rachel and Bobby arrived first, in fact, and got to work before Lou was present.
"I don't think I've ever had new Kids do that before," commented Lou.
The event went smoothly, according to the participants. After the dinner was over, some of the Kids sat down to eat at the church, and some went home for family dinners of their own.
CRISSY AND MIKE: MARRIED
Wednesday, August 29, 2007, was a very special occasion for the LS Kids -- and for two in particular.
Crystal Miller, who has been a part of the LS Kids for many years, married Mike Schedin, also a member of the group. The two were wed at a ceremony performed by the Clinton County's Justice of the Peace. They wrote and read their own vows, tailoring them to fit more with the Wiccan tradition of which they are practitioners.
After the actual ceremony, a reception was held in their honor at Hanna Park in Lock Haven, PA. Family and friends came bearing food and drink, there was music, and toasts were made to the bride and groom, with leader Lou holding up his glass to honor them both, tears in his eyes.
LS Kids Tiffany Allen, Debbie Benfield, Shelby Sander, and Biz Albright, all in attendance, hugged them both before leaving, offering their many heartfelt congratulations.
Mike and Crissy, along with their year-old daughter Jae, reside together in Lock Haven. The Kids wish them many happy years together.
RHYME AND REASON
For Crissy and Mike.
Even angels envy this love we share.
Compared to us, their love's despaired.
Such seraphs sing of joys like this,
And here we stand, in lovers' kiss.
Such sweet so sweet such melody,
Singing wonder of harmony.
Hand in hand we lay entwined,
My heart is yours and yours is mine.
I love the one who has my heart.
Forever and always till death apart.
Simple rings to show what's true,
That you love me, and how I love you.
Bell towers boom with happy songs,
And here I am, with who I belong.
Such magic and joy my heart is skipping,
But yet is still your hand I'm gripping
Such wonder in awe, this wonderful bliss.
Standing here with you, in one true kiss.
We've said our vows and laced our hands,
And forever here, by you I'll stand.
This is love, it's ours to show.
But forever remember and forever you'll know,
That this heart I have is yours to keep.
Because of you, is what makes it beat.
The JJJ Is:
Assistant Leaders: Tiffany Allen, Debbie Benfield
President: MarKel Wheeland
Vice-President: Meghan Rockey
Secretary: Cris Miller
Staff: Shelby Sander, Lacey Richner, Kristen Withers, Katie Bottorf, Rachel Mazza, Ericka Conklin, Bobby Smith, Biz Albright, Mike Schedin, Taylor Wheeland, Robin Prescott, Ida Yost
Distant Correspondents: MacKenzie Brundage, Regina Spence, Shadow Snow, Chelsey Crouchley, Goth Lizz
Foreign Bureau: Janice Marco
The holidays with the Kids. What can I say about it that I haven't said already?
Probably plenty, though considering I've been writing this newsletter close to eight years, I have developed a tendency to repeat myself. The Kids, in a way, are family---I've said that before. And like all families, we've gone and developed a few traditions of our own---Pretty sure I've mentioned that, too. And each year, the traditions continue, and grow.
Some of the projects, we've been doing all along---The bell ringing and the trip to Dad's. And some are newer, like Live Night. The Kids are, this year, a nice blend of old a new, too---Debbie pointed out that she'd never missed a year ringing the bell, while Rachel, Ericka, and Bobby were arriving for the first time.
One of the things I've always enjoyed most---All year, though for some reason it seems to be enhanced at Christmas---Is the delightful silliness the Kids show during a project. The laughing and fooling around. Like Biz quoting Mad TV at me and Tif. Like Ericka showing up with photos of her female snowperson, "Jennifer Snowpez." Like Rachel and Ericka ballroom dancing on Main Street. And responding to Santa letters with Tif, Rachel, and Ericka is always interesting---The temptation to misuse your authority there is just horrible. Boy, just imagine what we could say to those kids if we weren't the good guys.
Some of my best memories with this group are from moments when the Kids were just laughing with each other during a project. Granted, it depends on the project---Nobody trots out their weird sense of humor during the candlelight vigil for abuse victims. But when we're ringing the Salvation Army bells, and the Kids spontaneously decide to form a band, it makes me laugh---And it's the kind of thing I'll remember.
And hopefully, so will they. I'd like to think that this group will provide them with happy memories once they're grown.
I'm pretty sure it will. Got a Christmas card today from Rachel. It said,"Thanks for letting me join the best group in town."
They're glad to be here. And I'm glad to have them. And we all laugh, and remember the laughter for years to come.
-Through the years, we all will be together....