“Building Beauty Every Day”

“Building Beauty Every Day” presented by Drew Becher will be the featured PowerPoint program at the monthly meeting of the Trevose Horticultural Society on Monday, April 28, 2014 at 7:00PM at their new meeting location, Saint Katherine Drexel Mission Center, 1663 Bristol Pike, Bensalem, PA.

Pennsylvania Horticultural Society President, Drew Becher, will highlight the beauty created everyday in the Society’s efforts throughout the city to improve the quality of life and create a sense of community through horticulture.  He will also preview the PHS future sustainable initiatives to enhance public landscapes by adding beauty and value to neighborhoods throughout Philadelphia in the decades to come.

Becher became the 36th President of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society in 2010.  Under his leadership, PHS has initiated the Plant One Million campaign to restore the region’s tree canopy; expanded the City Harvest program, initiated the PHS Pop Up Garden projects; and introduced exciting new features at the PHS Philadelphia Flower Show.

Becher served as Executive Director of the non-profit New York Restoration Project, founded by entertainer and environmentalist Bette Midler, and was a respected leader in the city’s greening and beautification initiatives.  As Deputy Director of Washington, D.C.’s Office of Planning (2004-06), he led the creation of the Department of Environment and before that was associate director of the D.C. Department of Parks and Recreation.  As Chief of Staff for the Chicago Park District (1996-2004) and Assistant to the Mayor,  Becher helped forge Mayor Richard M. Daley’s acclaimed environmental and beautification agenda, overseeing many of the initiatives that are now hallmarks of Chicago’s urban renaissance.

All meetings are open to the public; a donation of $3 is requested from non-members.  For further information, please contact 856/866-9163.

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Feasterville Business Association will be conducting a Free Home Buying Seminar on April 23

As part of its new “Spotlight On Business” series, the Feasterville Business Association will be offering a free home buying seminar at the Lower Southampton Free Library, 1983 Bridgetown Pike in Feasterville, PA on Wednesday, April 23, from 6 to 8 p.m. The public is invited.

In making the announcement, Rose McMenamin, president of the FBA, says that whether you’re a first time, second time or beyond buyer there will be a great deal of important information provided by a host of professionals working in almost all aspects of the home buying industry. “Here’s a terrific opportunity to come and find out about the whole process from pre-qualification to final settlement without any cost or obligation,” McMenamin explains. “If you’re in the market for a home purchase it will be time well invested.”

Among the topics to be covered will be preparing for home ownership, benefits of pre-qualification, loan options and obtaining a mortgage, mortgage and title insurance, credit scores and credit counseling, tools for home shopping, home inspection, sales agreements, closing costs and more. There also will be an open forum question and answer segment with a panel of experts.

Participants include representatives from 3rd FED Bank, Olde Towne Real Estate, Inc., Bucks County Housing Group, Credit Counseling Center, Financial Expertise, Financial Group Plus, Greater Philadelphia Abstract, Kelly Adjusters, Miller & Hauptman, New Penn Financial, and Regal Property Management. Light refreshments will be served.

Now in its 65th anniversary year, the Feasterville Business Association‘s mission is to foster and encourage growth and progress for the betterment of the community. Reservations are suggested by calling 215-436-9768 or by emailing feastervilleba@gmail.com. You can also visit the FBA on the web at www.feastervillebiz.

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Fish fry and hoagie sale to benefit the Trevose Fire Company

On Good Friday, April 18th, Trevose Fire Company will be offering takeout fish dinners and hoagies.

Fish dinners include fish, fries, and coleslaw and cost $8 for adults (four pieces of fish) and $4 for children (two pieces of fish). Tuna hoagies and cheese hoagies cost $5 each (eight-inch length).  Dinners can be picked up at the firehouse between 11:00am and 5:00pm via drive-thru service!

Reservation tickets should be purchased in advance as there will only be a limited number of dinners available at the door without a ticket. Tickets will be sold every Tuesday from 7:00pm to 9:00pm through April 15th at the firehouse. 

Trevose Fire Company is located at 4900 Street Road, Trevose.  For more information call 215-357-1270.

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Award winning author and illustrator to read her latest children’s book at Southampton Free Library

Susan Stockdale, an award winning children’s author and illustrator, will read and discuss her latest children’s book, “Stripes Of All Types,” for youngsters three to eight years of age at the Southampton Free Library, 947 Street Road, Southampton, on Friday, April 11th. Susan will offer two one-hour presentations at 10:00am and 11:00am. The public is invited.

Her appearance is part of a statewide initiative entitled, “One Book Every Young Child.” Through this program adults with preschoolers will learn how to support the development of literacy in preschool children.

Because it is important for children to be prepared for school, One Book Every Young Child will provide opportunities for adults to read aloud and share books, stories and related activities with preschoolers. These activities have been shown to be crucial to early learning.

Stockdale’s latest work explores how animals around the world benefit from their stripes. Each striped creature is described in action in its natural  habitat – prowling the prairie, perched on a peak, crawling on cactus and camped by a creek. Engaging rhymes and bright bold images keep readers entertained while a glossary at the back provides information on each featured animal. A fun and engaging matching game at the end tests children’s knowledge of animal stripes.

One Book Every Young Child is made possible through a collaboration of the Pennsylvania Department of Education, Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare, Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, Please Touch Museum, State Museum of Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania Library Association, Pennsylvania Center For The Book, Pennsylvania Association for the Education of Young Children, The Pennsylvania Child Care Association, PennSERVE, HSLC/Access PA and the Verizon Foundation which provided a $40,000 grant as part of a commitment to unlock the promise of literacy.

The Southampton Free Library recently announced the launch of a Capital and Endowment Campaign to help renovate and refurbish several sections of the library and enhance and expand programming for both children and adults. The goal of the campaign is to raise $575,000.

For additional information about the children’s author program, contact Lora Terifay, Children’s Librarian for the library at 215-322-1415, ext. 4, or e-mail terifayl@buckslib.org.  

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Area youngsters invited to FBA’s Annual Easter Egg Hunt April 12th

 

Area youngsters are invited to join the Easter Bunny for the annual Feasterville Business Association’s Easter Egg Hunt, to be held at Russell Elliot Field on Buck Road, Feasterville, on Saturday, April 12th, beginning at 10:00am sharp.

According to Linda Pupkiewicz, FBA event chairperson who also will personify the Easter Bunny, “All area children are invited to join the fun and festivities of the Association’s Holiday Egg Hunt compliments of the FBA.” Prizes will be awarded to the leading egg gatherers. “Through the years this has been a wonderful event for both young and old to come out to and enjoy,” she states. Parents are encouraged to bring a camera for pictures of their children with the Easter Bunny. Friends of the Lower Southampton Library are co-sponsoring the event.

For additional information, contact Linda Pupkiewicz at 215-355-1183.

PHOTO CAP: From left, FBA board member Ray Greenberg, the Easter Bunny (Linda Pupkiewicz, FBA recording secretary and event chair), FBA corresponding secretary Diane Fetscher, and Jane Ward, chair of Sick and Sunshine Committee.

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Local walk events spotlighting Autism Awareness Month

by Barbara Long

The various challenges of raising children affected by Autism Spectrum Disorder – a general term for a group of complex brain development disorders – are being experienced by an increasing number of families. According to the Autism Speaks website, ASD affects 1 in 88 children and its prevalence is growing.

April is Autism Awareness Month, and among numerous nationwide events spotlighting ASD, three local walks are being held – two at middle schools and one at the Northeast campus of Holy Family College that is being sponsored by SeanMe, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization established by Sharon and Daniel Finley of Feasterville.

The Finleys know quite a bit about dealing with autistic children, as their twin sons, now age 14, have both been diagnosed with ASD.

“People are doing research on autism – and God bless them – but in the meantime, we’re living it,” Sharon said.  She continued, “Years ago, when everyone was celebrating various holidays, we wondered what we were going to do. So we started hosting parties at our house, and we saw that we were not alone. Soon the number of people coming to our different parties grew and we needed to expand.”

SeanMe is the vehicle that the Finleys formed to help area families affected by ASD children drive forward. The autistic support organization provides recreational day and week-long getaways, including a summer trip to a needs-friendly beach house in Wildwood, N.J., as well as specialized job training and other assistance for ASD youths and their loved ones.

The nonprofit takes its name from the Finleys’ son Sean, who did not speak until he was more than six-years-old, and then referred to his parents as “MeMom” and “MeDad.” During those early years of communication, Sean spoke about himself as “SeanMe.”

The autism awareness walks at the middle schools, each of which one of the Finley twins attends, are being organized by student council members. Maple Point Middle School in Langhorne is organizing its first walk for autism, slated for April 11th. The other walk at Poquessing Middle School in Feasterville is a continuing tradition, first started in 2008, and will be held on May 2nd.

During the school walks for awareness of autism, students carry signs with various messages, such as “Say No to Bullying” or names of themselves or loved ones affected by autism. Sharon noted that these walks help get out information about ASD and they also help bring autistic students into the fold of their peers.

On April 13th, from 9:00am to 1:00pm, SeanMe will host a public walk at Holy Family College on Frankford Avenue in Philadelphia. To register and for more information about this event, e-mail SeanMe.org@gmail.com. The nonprofit is asking participants to raise $10 in donations, which will help defer the organization’s expenses for the various recreational trips it offers.

For their efforts on behalf of families affected by autism, the Finleys and SeanMe have been publicly recognized, such as with a community grant from the Feasterville Business Association. Yet one special acknowledgment clearly stands out to them – that initiated by their 19-year-old daughter, Danielle, who nominated her parents for Mealey’s Furniture annual “Houseful of Furniture” giveaway last year.

Danielle’s inspirational letter about her parents’ dedication not only to her twin brothers, but also to families affected by autism throughout the community resulted in Mealey’s Westminster store delivering $10,000 worth of brand-new furniture to the Finleys’ home.

“Danielle is amazing,” Sharon enthused about her daughter as well as her daughter’s altruism, which has been on display for many years, including an Alex’s Lemonade Stand.

When asked about what advice she would offer to families raising children with ASD, Sharon said, “Keep reaching out, keeping going, and don’t give up. We’ve been given a special gift.”

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Campers may still register for Summer Day Camps

Campers may still register for 2014 Summer Day Camps in Lower Southampton Township, it was recently announced by Matt Gilbert, Parks and Recreation Director.

In making the announcement, Matt says that there are still slots available for interested families and he is gearing up for an exciting and energetic nine-week camping experience for youngsters from June 23rd to August 24th.

“This year’s camps will feature a full share of recreational activities, crafts, instructional enrichment and fun-filled cultural excursions,” he relates. “Our program has been carefully designed to allow every child to grow and mature through a series of supervised programs and activities embracing physical development, socialization, teamwork and camaraderie.”

Camp will be divided into a series of age- segmented groups starting with the  Pioneer Camp for children ages three to five, which will be located at Russell Elliott Memorial Park on Buck Road. Discovery Camp for ages five to 12 and seven to 12 will be run simultaneously at two locations, the Dolphin Swim Club, 260 West Bristol Road, and the Joseph J. Ferderbar Elementary School, 300 Heights Lane. Teen Camp for teens 13-years plus also will be located at the Dolphin Swim Club. There also will be a Counselor-In-Training Program for teenagers 13-years of age and beyond which will be housed at the Dolphin or Ferderbar locations. “We have wonderful programs for children of all ages, however, I encourage parents to register early because space is limited,” Matt notes.

In 2014, special Summer Day Camp resident rates will be offered to all people residing in the 19053 zip code and all of Upper Southampton Township. Cost for a youngster residing in those areas is $649 for the season with a $155  deposit required. The non-resident rate is $849 per child with a $234 deposit required.

A full camp payment schedule and further information is available on request at 215 -357-7300, extension 340 or online at www.lowersouthamptontownship.org.

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Vendors wanted for Teen Day

Upper Southampton Township Teen Day 2014 will be held on Saturday, March 29th, from 1:00 to 3:00pm at Tamanend Park, 1255 Second Street Pike, Southampton.

Teen Day is a celebration to honor the accomplishments of young people in their communities and to encourage continued active involvement of youth in community activities. Come recognize “Teen Stars” – those who are responsible citizens who contribute to the good of our community. In recognition of this event there will be contests for poetry, music, theatre, dancing, art, essays, talent and good citizenship. Schools, youth organizations, parenting groups, parents, teachers, counselors, grandparents and friends are welcome to join in for this event.

For more information, contact Marian Gilbert at mgilbert@ustwp.org.

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Adult Programs at the Township Library

Adult Spring Programs at the Township Library of Lower Southampton begin in March. Here’s what’s coming up:

* AARP Safety Driving Program for seniors in March. This class is a one-day refresher course. In order to be eligible for this class you must have taken an AARP Safety Driving Course within the last three years. You must bring proof that you took the class, such as a copy of your class certificate or your insurance bill. You must be a licensed driver 55 years or older to participate. You are also required to bring a pen or pencil and your current driver’s license to the class. The fee for this program is $15 for AARP members and $20 for non-members. The class will be held on Tuesday, March 18th from 12:30 to 5:00pm. If you have any questions or want to register, you can call Mr. Paul Strenge at 215-355-1037. The library will not be taking reservations for this class.

* A Military Fashion Show featuring military uniforms of early American forces and foes. Re-enactor Michael Jesberger will present an educational program on the various military attire and equipment worn by our early American fighting men and their foes. Complete with reproduction clothing, headgear and equipment, this program will inform and show you how the military uniform evolved from the pre-Revolutionary War militias to the soldiers of the American Civil War. This program will take place on Thursday, March 20th at 7:00 pm. Registration has begun for this class.

* “FDR: An Arsenal for Democracy” -  The date is December 29th, 1940. Franklin Delano Roosevelt has just been reelected to an unprecedented third term in office. But the world is in crisis. Nazi Germany has blazed the path of destruction across Europe, and America may soon be drawn into war. Visit the library and watch this famous moment come to life, as you meet with the President just prior to his delivery of the famous “Arsenal of Democracy” speech. Learn what President Roosevelt was thinking, and listen to his plea for the support of our Allies. Experience firsthand the history that shaped our nation. Actor Neill Hartley of the American Historical Theatre will portray FDR. This program will take place on Thursday, March 27th at 7:00pm. Registration begins on Monday, March 3rd.

You can register that the Library Information Desk or by calling the library at 215-355-1183 x104. The Township Library is located at 1983 Bridgetown Pike in Feasterville.

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Calling ALL Veterans!

The Lower Southampton Township Veterans Advisory Council (VAC) invites you to join them for their third annual Veterans Muster to be held Saturday, March 22nd at the Neshaminy Activities Center, 1842 Brownsville Road, Feasterville, from 11:00am to 2:00pm.

Come on out and enjoy some time with fellow service men and women. The Bucks County Veterans ID Card officials will be there to issue your cards, so bring your DD214 and/or Discharge orders.

If you have a family member who has served this nation, e-mail the VAC a short bio and photo of him or her, and the Township Board of Supervisors will recognize them.

The VAC may have the assistance that you or someone you know needs. To reach a member, or for more information about the VAC’s upcoming Muster, call 267-982-2199 or e-mail lstwp.vac@gmail.com. Monthly meetings are held at the Lower Southampton Township building at 7:00pm on the first Tuesday of each month.

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