Diamonds to area developer George Albert. He’s the lead – an no longer anonymous – investor of a Wyoming Valley-based group aiming to restore the historical New Jersey Central train station and revive the surrounding property. Among the plans: Refresh the exterior of an existing strip mall at the Wilkes-Barre site and add three buildings. “It’s going to be a huge improvement to that area if we can make it a success,” Albert, a Pittston engineer, told the Times Leader. The group submitted the sole bid for the Luzerne County Redevelopment Authority-owned parcel; some scuttlebutt had arisen recently because of the anonymity surrounding the potential buyer. Now you know.
Coal to cholesterol. During the annual Kielbasa Festival in downtown Plymouth, continuing from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday, we shudder to think about what all those delicious sausages might be doing to our arteries. Nevertheless, we sample. And sample some more. Sorry, doc. On Sunday, we promise, nothing but veggie salads.
Diamonds to Don Skursky, who’s striving to revive Exeter Hose Co. No. 1. The fire chief, who had resigned the post in 2000 due to health reasons, recently returned to help pick up the pieces after a financial scandal rocked the organization. Aside from tattered public trust, the fire company’s remaining volunteers are coping with a continued funding shortfall, equipment in disrepair and a lack of basic services. The company’s water was shut off because of nonpayment, according to last week’s Times Leader article. Fortunately, people like Skursky don’t panic in emergencies, and they’re devoted to keeping their communities strong.
Coal to the Luzerne County Election Board. Its members can’t quickly put their fingers on minutes of prior meetings, calling into question the thoroughness of the group’s record-keeping. Maybe the minutes exist; maybe they don’t. In either case, Luzerne County Councilman Stephen J. Urban was right to raise concerns. Let the volunteer members of other authorities, boards and commissions be forewarned: This duty isn’t comparable to serving on a high school club. You have legal and possibly financial responsibilities; don’t take them lightly.
Diamonds to man in motion Vince Wojnar. A co-founder of the Wyoming Valley Striders running club, begun 40 years ago, Wojnar has in many ways set the pace of the sport locally. He’s been a coach and mentor. He served as official timer of the Steamtown Marathon in its early years. And until recently he acted as race director for most of the Striders’ contests. To honor his contributions, the Times Leader reported, fellow runners and friends recently gathered in Kirby Park to dedicate something in Wojnar’s name: a park bench. Presumably, it won’t get much use from his fitness-minded followers; they have more miles to cover.