Hurricane Sandy safety info for Pottstown

Thanks to The Mercury, Roy’s Rants, Warren Holohan of Ink and Essence, and John Armato for all these pieces of info below  to help Pottstown residents keep themselves safe. If new info comes to me, I will get it up ASAP. Stay inside and take care!

  • Pottstown High School is a Red Cross emergency shelter during the storm. It was open last night and will be open during the emergency.  The High School is at 750 N. Washington Street. You can enter at the gym area.
  • Christ Episcopal Church at 316 E. High Street near the Farmers’ Market announced it is open for shelter and sanctuary for anyone in need due to protracted loss of electric, flooding or other catastrophes resulting from the storm. Bedding and other essentials have been put into place.  Contact Rev. Terry Highland at the church for more details:  610-323-2895.
  • In Pottstown, Hanover Street between Third and Fourth Streets has been closed for low tree branches and power lines.
  • The Coventry Mall will close at 2 p.m. today.
  • However, as of 10:30 a.m., Wal-Mart, K-Mart and Target all planned to remain open throughout the day.

Use this link here to access The Mercury’s regional storm updates as Sandy barrels through.

Elks Lodge 814 hosting all-you-can-eat breakfast this Sunday

The Pottstown Elks Lodge 814, located at  61 E. High Street in Pottstown, will be hosting an all-you-can-eat breakfast this Sunday, October 28th from 8:00 am until 11:00am.

All proceeds benefit the Home Service Program.

For $9/adult  and $4/child under age 10, you and your family can enjoy pancakes, French toast, waffles, and cream chipped beef along with eggs and omelets made to order.

Last chance to see historic art exhibit at ArtFusion 19464!

JANET BRAUN REINITZ by Charlotta Janssen

The historic Threads of a Story art exhibit at ArtFusion 19464 will end this Saturday, October 27th at 3pm. Hundreds of Pottstown area school children and visitors of all ages have witnessed these portraits of the Freedom Riders from 1961 and the Bus Boycotters from 1956 during the Civil Rights era.

From ArtFusion’s website: “This show features the work of Charlotta Janssen, who was inspired from mug shots of famous–and not famous–people arrested during the civil rights movement of the 50s and 60s, demanding desegregation and equal rights for all.  Ms. Janssen appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show on May 4, 2011, showcasing her work, during Oprah’s tribute to the Freedom Riders.  Her work is displayed and collected nationally and internationally. For more information on this show, please click here.”

ArtFusion 19464 Hours

Tuesday-Friday 10am-5pm and Saturday 10am-3pm
Closed Sunday and Monday


254 E. High St.
Pottstown, PA 19464




Pottstown Y hosts 22nd annual Halloween Safehouse

The Freedom Valley YMCA at Pottstown, Adams & Jackson Streets, will host its 22nd Annual Y Cares Halloween Safehouse Treat Trail on Friday, October 26th from 6:00 to 8:00 p.mEntrance to the event is behind the YMCA on Grant Street.

Open to children 12 & under accompanied by an adult, this fun event provides a safe trick or treat environment for area children, while supporting the  community.     

 Admission is a donation to support the Y Cares Financial Assistance Program.

The Treat Trail, provided by local organizations, businesses and volunteers, will include music by Pure Fun Entertainment.  This year’s theme: “YOU can be a Superhero”.

To learn more about this Pottstown Halloween tradition, contact Jane at 610-323-7300 ext 10 or

See Phillie Phanatic in Pottstown’s Halloween parade tonight!

According to The Mercury, the Phillie Phanatic will be at tonight’s Halloween Parade, which begins at 7 pm at Goodwill Fire Company and ends at Borough Hall. (Goodwill is at 714 E. High Street.)

Other entertainment includes the Boyertown Alumni Band and  the Pottstown and Pottsgrove middle and high school marching bands.

Everyone in the Pottstown region is invited to come out, watch, and participate in this SPOOKTACULAR hometown event!

“Blithe Spirit” brings witty fun to Main Stage at Steel River Playhouse

I got to spend last Friday night enjoying the clever writing of British playwright Noel Coward and the accents and acting of a superb cast of regional actors, thanks to a complimentary ticket to the opening performance of the play Blithe Spirit at Steel River Playhouse in downtown Pottstown.

Before the play even begins, the audience gets a feel for the comedy that’s about to ensue when the typical announcements (about turning off your cell phone and not eating candy wrapped in that annoying crinkly cellophane) are made by an otherworldly British voice, purported to be coming from the ghost of Noel Coward, the playwright himself. Between that and the classy, mood-setting music of harpist Betsy Chapman, the audience is primed when the set lights up and we are in a quintessential gorgeous Victorian-style living room in the home of Ruth and Charles Condomine of Kent, England. It’s hard miss the dramatic and sensual portrait of a red-haired woman above the mantelpiece.

The set-up is marvelous: Ruth and Charles have invited a local medium to a dinner party with another couple so that Charles can do some research for a mystery he’s writing. (Yes, writers really do stuff like that – anything for a story.) Before their guests arrive, we’re treated to some physical comedy from their hyperactive maid, Edith, relentlessly portrayed by Rebecca Shoemaker. We also learn that the woman above the mantelpiece is Charles’ deceased first wife, Elvira,  he’s still got a thing for her, and his current wife is not oblivious to that. Their guests, Dr. and Mrs. Bradman, arrive and then the stage really lights up when the colorful Madame Arcati enters. Played by Steel River’s Artistic Director and co-founder, Deborah Stimson-Snow, Madame Arcati keeps the energy and the comedy rolling for the rest of the evening.

When she conjures up the spirit of Elvira, and Charles is the only one who can hear or see her, we know instantly that trouble is on the immediate horizon for his relationship with Ruth, his current wife. There is a hilarious and long exchange between Charles and Ruth and Charles and Elvira – a literary love triangle – near the end of the first act in which everything he says to Elvira is incorrectly interpreted by Ruth until she goes off to bed in a huff. This delicious bit of writing is carried off without a hitch by Jennifer Dinan (Ruth), Carl Heyde (Charles), and Tara McFalls (Elvira). Now, try to imagine hearing me say in a British accent: This is terribly funny.

As you might expect, Elvira is trouble – not unlike the ghost or the embodiment of any former lover who intrudes upon a current relationship. As Charles and Ruth try to rid themselves of her presence and influence, things get royally botched. I hope I’m not delivering any spoilers here when I say that after several twists and turns of the plot, it becomes apparent that the spirits of these three characters will never be completely disentangled.

I loved this play! It’s loads of fun, the writing, acting, music, set design, and costumes are stellar. The Pottstown region is very fortunate to have Steel River Playhouse in its midst, bringing  outstanding drama to the suburbs of southeastern Pennsylvania. Blithe Spirit runs just two more weekends – this weekend and next – so make your plans and get your tickets now. Cheers!

The remaining performances of Blithe Spirit will take place Thursdays (October 18 and 25 at 7:30PM), Fridays (October 19 and 26 at 8PM), Saturdays (October 20 and 27 at 8PM) and Sundays (October 21 and 28 at 3PM) on the Main Stage. Tickets range from $17-$23. More information and a ticketing link are available at or by calling 610.970.1199.

About Steel River Playhouse

Formerly Tri-County Performing Arts Center (Tri-PAC), Steel River Playhouse seeks to strengthen community, inspire creative exploration, educate, and entertain, through the presentation of quality performing arts events and education for diverse audiences. Each year, the Steel River Playhouse produces more than 90 performances and hosts more than 10,000 people as audiences, students, artists, donors and volunteers from throughout the region. We offer performance opportunities through open auditions; theater technical training; acting, voice, and instrumental lessons; classes and workshops for all ages; summer camp programs; and educational outreach including scholarships, artists in the classroom, traveling children’s shows, and other initiatives. For further information, visit, or call 610-970-1199.

Volunteers wanted on Saturday for Eagle Scout project in Coventry Woods; community bonfire to follow


Courtesy of Mauree Kai

This Saturday, October 20th from 10am-4 pm, Eagle Scout candidate Austin Tanay is running another work weekend at Coventry Woods in North Coventry Township. He is a Life Scout in Troop 95 and working on attaining the highest rank in scouting – that of Eagle. His project involves creating a rustic tent camping site at Coventry Woods, North Coventry Township, for group camping. A couple years ago I visited and wrote about Coventry Woods for a parks and recreation series for the Pottstown Area Health & Wellness Foundation. This is an absolutely lovely part of our region!

The project is quite large in scope, including demolition of 5 old buildings in a specific area of Coventry Woods (1954 St. Peter’s Road, Pottstown), clearing out  a lot of overgrown brush, cutting down close to three dozen dead trees, opening up an eight foot wide trail into the campsite, removing large rocks out of the walking path, building a campfire ring, building benches to go around the campfire ring, and erecting a flag pole. The site will be available for non-profit groups like scouts and churches in the area.

Austin is recycling any materials that are recyclable, cutting up the wood from the structures to be used in a big bonfire at Coventry Woods this weekend, following the work day at around 4 pm. He is also cutting up the downed trees for firewood to be sold, salvaging reusable materials from the cabins, and properly disposing of all trash from the demolition that cannot be reused in any way.

Courtesy of Mauree Kai

He has already held three work weekends and accomplished a lot thanks to the support of volunteers, but he still has more work to be done. The work this weekend will include demolishing the fifth and last building, breaking down all the material for proper disposal or recycling, leveling off the site, cutting up and transporting the wood from the structure to the location of the bonfire. His goal is to get the last building completely demolished and disposed of so he can build the fire ring and benches Saturday afternoon.

The cost of the firewood is $75.00 per load/cord. The logs are cut into 3-4 foot lengths. They just need to be split. The proceeds will help fund the Eagle project. If you are interested in purchasing wood,  call Mauree Kai @ 610-970-0951 prior to coming for pick up.

The workday will start at 10:00 AM on Saturday. All are invited to participate and they can come later since the project will be going on into the afternoon, wrapping up around three o’clock.

*Volunteers need to bring their own tools. For this Saturday, crow bars, hammers, sledge hammers are needed. Work gloves are a must. A few wheelbarrows would come in handy also if people have a way to transport them.*

There is plenty of parking available. Anyone coming to help out can park at the lodge and look for the sign at the entrance of the trail head into the project (1954 St. Peter’s Road, Pottstown). This is what the entrance looks like.

Photo by Sue Repko

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