Pottstown Parks Director Eileen Schlegel Remembered

Eileen Schlegel, the Pottstown Parks and Recreation Director since 2008, passed away suddenly last Saturday. Those wishing to pay respects and honor her life may do so at a viewing from 7 to 9 p.m. tonight at Warker-Troutman Funeral Home at  726 E. High St. The funeral will be at the funeral home on Saturday from 10 to 11 a.m.

According to Evan Brandt’s Mercury article, Eileen grew up on Queen Street and graduated from St. Pius X High School. She started working for the Parks Department in the early 1990s. I will always remember Eileen for being the go-to person for so many community activities and events. She oversaw a department that was responsible for all of the Borough’s parks, the spray park, Trilogy BMX park, Riverfront Park,  the Bark Park, and year-round recreational programming for all ages. She and her staff could be counted on to provide the chairs, sound equipment, power, games, hot dogs and hot chocolate at parades, 4th of July festivities, the Polar Bear Plunge, the Funky Santa 5K, the Volleyball Rumble and so much more.  Eileen Schlegel had a hand in all this, in the life of the community, and in the seasonal rituals that become traditions and make a town a home. She will be remembered for many years to come

Memorial contributions in her honor may be made to Helping Hands Inc., 415 Hoffmansville Road, Bechtelsville, PA 19505. For more than 30 years Helping Hands has been serving individuals with developmental delays and mental and physical challenges.

Upcoming events for Legendary Locals of Pottstown

JOIN US FOR A BOOK TALK AND SIGNING!

There are a couple of book talks/signings coming up in the next week for the Legendary Locals of Pottstown book, co-authored by photographer Ed Berger and me. Come out to meet some Legendary Locals, learn more about the history of Pottstown through its legends, and how we put this book together. BOOKS WILL BE AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE ($21.99) Look forward to seeing you!

The first event is at the Pottstown Regional Public Library at 500 E. High Street this Sunday, from 1-3 pm. The library is opening just for us!

Then, next Wednesday, November 6th at 7 pm, there is a talk/signing at the Schuylkill River Greenway Association at 140 College Drive in Pottstown. This is a really cool former PECO substation that is used by the Greenway and owned by Montgomery County Community College, and they’ve got a fabulous permanent exhibit about the history of the Schuylkill River. You can learn about Pottstown’s people and the river all in one fell swoop.

Finally, thank you to Joe Zlomek of The Sanatoga Post and The Pottstown Post for publicizing the latter event!

Sue Repko

MCCC Hosts 10th Annual Scenes of the Schuylkill River Heritage Area Art Show

Here’s an announcement from Montgomery County Community College. They have a lovely art gallery at their West Campus in Pottstown. Check it out this fall!

Montgomery County Community College will host the Tenth Annual Scenes of the Schuylkill River Heritage Area Art Show, Aug. 28-Oct. 18, at the Fine Arts Gallery, North Hall, 16 High Street, Pottstown.

Sponsored by the Schuylkill River National & State Heritage Area, the art show features 83 original pieces of artwork that highlights the beautiful and unique qualities of the Schuylkill River Heritage Area.

Philadelphia artist Susannah Hart Thomer won Best of Show for her watercolor, “Escalation,” which depicts the spiral staircase located outside the Philadelphia Museum of Art leading to the Schuylkill River.

Second place went to Jonathan Bond, Kempton, Berks County, for his painting, “Lutz Tannery,” and third place went to Teresa McWilliams Farina, Royersford, for her pastel, “Pennypacker Mills Tranquility.” The Staff Choice Award went to Lori Quinque-Quinn, Perkiomenville, for her watercolor painting, “The Coyle Farm Winter Sheep.”

Honorable mentions were awarded to Walt Hug, Birdsboro, for his photograph, “Midnight at Memorial Hall,” and Arnold Winkler, Blue Bell, for his digital composite, “Valley Forge.”

This year’s show was juried by Terry Newman, owner of Newman Galleries in Philadelphia.  He spent several hours examining the 107 entries before making his selections.

The hours for the MCCC gallery are Monday-Thursday, 8 a.m.-9:30 p.m. and Friday, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Closed weekends. For more information contact the SRHA at 484-945-0200 or the MCCC Galleries Director Holly Cairns at 215-619-7349 or hcairns@mc3.edu.

You can help support the arts and art education programs at Montgomery County Community College by becoming a Friend of The Galleries. Donations are tax deductible. For more information, contact the College Foundation at 215-641-6535. Friend and follow MCCC’s arts on facebook.com/DestinationArts.

The Schuylkill River National and State Heritage Area, managed by the non-profit Schuylkill River Greenway Association, uses conservation, education, recreation, cultural and historic preservation and  tourism as tools for community revitalization and economic development. For more information about the SRHA visit www.schuylkillriver.org.

Register by Sept. 5th for Cycles & Cemeteries Ride

Schuylkill River Trail Bike Tour Series
Cycles  & Cemeteries Ride
Register by September 5 for Early Bird Price!
 

Ride on the Schuylkill River Trail from Norristown to East Falls and tour on foot two historic cemeteries, visiting burial sites of Civil War notables including Gettysburg Generals Hancock and Meade. Ride options include 14 or 28-mile rides. 

 

When: Saturday September 21, 2013; Check-in 8-9 a.m.

 

Where: Ride begins at Montgomery Cemetery, 1 Hartranft Ave., West Norriton (just outside of Norristown, PA) and follows the Schuylkill River Trail to Laurel Hill Cemetery in Philadelphia’s East Falls neighborhood.

Cost: $35 early bird price; after 9/5 cost is $40.

Optional return bike/passenger shuttle $10.

Optional  lunch and Laurel Hill Cemetery tours for non-riding guests of participants $15.

Amenities: Price includes well-marked route, catered lunch, guided cemetery tours and free t-shirt (t-shirt not available if registering after 9/5).

Visit our website for more details
Questions? Call the Schuylkill River Heritage Area at 484-945-0200; or email info@schuylkillriver.org.
Ride Details

Two options make this a great event for all cyclists!
* 14-mile one-way ride from Montgomery Cemetery in West Norriton (just outside Norristown) to Laurel Hill Cemetery in East Falls with return bike and passenger shuttle. Shuttle is $10 extra per person.
* 28-mile round-trip ride from Montgomery Cemetery  to Laurel Hill Cemetery and back.
* Both rides include lunch and guided tours on foot of two historic cemeteries where Civil War notables are buried.

 

Register early! Ride limited to 250 riders.

Due to the width of the trail, no bicycle trailers will be permitted on this ride. Helmets are strongly recommended. No day of event registrations accepted. Registration closes 9/20 at noon.

Schuylkill River Sojourn celebrates 15 years

This comes to us from Laura Catalano at the Schuylkill River Heritage Area…

SCHUYLKILL RIVER SOJOURN

 WILL CELEBRATE 15 YEARS OF CELEBRATING THE RIVER

From June 1-7 over 200 paddlers will take a Civil War Odyssey down the Schuylkill River

In June, the Annual Schuylkill River Sojourn will celebrate 15 years of celebrating the river.  As always, it will bring a flotilla of colorful kayaks and canoes from Schuylkill Haven to Philadelphia from June 1-7, stopping along the way in river towns and parks. The event will be highlighted by programming at every stop on the region’s role in the Civil War.

For 15 years, the sojourn has been organized by the Schuylkill River Heritage Area, in Pottstown, in order to draw attention to the river as a beautiful natural, historic and recreational resource. Over that time period, more than 3,000 registrants from 20 states and Canada have participated.

This year, over 200 paddlers will take all or part of the weeklong, 112-mile guided canoe/kayak tour. A record number, 59, will make the full trip, launching their kayaks from Schuylkill Haven on June 1, traveling through five-counties (Schuylkill, Berks, Chester, Montgomery and Philadelphia), and bidding goodbye to the river at Philadelphia’s Boat House Row on June 7.

Each day, a maximum of 100 boats will be on the water—a sight that is welcomed by people who cheer the sojourners on at bridges and roadsides along the way. The paddlers will visit a number of communities in the region when they stop for lunch and camp out in riverside parks.

 “Over the years, the Schuylkill River Sojourn has gained a reputation for being one of the best sojourns in the state,” said Schuylkill River Heritage Area Executive Director Kurt Zwikl. “It has made a significant impact on this region, encouraging recreational boating on the river, and spawning the development of the Schuylkill River Water Trail.”

 A water trail is a waterway that is prepared for recreational boating with boat launches, maps and guides. The Schuylkill River Water Trail has been recognized by the American Canoe Association as a “Recommended Water Trail.”

One reason the Schuylkill River Sojourn is highly regarded is that it has a strong educational emphasis. Each year, programs focusing on the river’s history, culture or environment are incorporated into the lunch and evening stops. The public is invited to attend all programs at evening campsites at no charge.

This year’s program theme is A Civil War Odyssey, in conjunction with the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg. The first evening, spent at a Port Clinton campsite, sojourners will hear about a regiment of coal miners who tunneled under the enemy. The following night, they’ll watch a one-woman play about Hopewell Furnace during the Civil War era. They’ll learn about the First Defenders at the Gibraltar campsite, see a living history program on Civil War buglers in Pottstown, discover the region’s role in the Underground Railroad in Mont Clare, and meet Gen. George Meade in Conshohocken. (See attached for a list of public programs).

Highlighting the lunch programming is a presentation by Gettysburg National Historic Park Superintendent Bob Kirby on the park’s commemoration of the 150th anniversary of Gettysburg. That will take place at 12 p.m. on Monday June 3, in Reading Riverfront Park, in Reading.

While the Schuylkill River Sojourn is clearly a recreational endeavor, its primary purpose is to draw attention to the river as this region’s most critical natural resource and a source of drinking water for over 1.5 million people. Studies show that when people paddle a river, they are more likely to be concerned about the health of that river, and to take measures to protect it.

The Schuylkill River National and State Heritage Area, managed by the non-profit Schuylkill River Greenway Association, uses conservation, education, recreation, historic and cultural preservation and tourism as tools for community revitalization and economic development. www.schuylkillriver.org/sojourn.aspx.

Register today for River Sojourn to avoid late fee!

15th Annual
Schuylkill River Sojourn
Friday May 10th is the last day to register to avoid the late fee! 


2013 Sojourn Theme: A Civil War Odyssey 

 June 1-7, 2013  

 Register online now

or

Download a mail-in registration form  

 

  • Register by May 10 to avoid a late fee.  Registrations received after May 10 will be automatically charged a $10 late fee. No registrations can be accepted after May 25.
  • There are plenty of spaces available for Tuesday June 4 through Friday June 7. Learn more about these days. Registration is full for the first three days and full-trip.
  • Click here for more information, pricing, itinerary, or photos.

The Schuylkill River Sojourn is a 7-day, 112-mile guided paddle from Schuylkill Haven to Boathouse Row in Philadelphia that is organized annually by the Schuylkill River Heritage Area.  Participants can register for one day or the entire week.

Photos: 2012 Sojourn Courtesy Jeremy Quant

Schuylkill River Sojourn FULL-TRIP registration now online!

15th Annual 

Schuylkill River Sojourn
Last week of exclusive
full-trip registration.
General registration opens April 15 
 

The 2013 Sojourn Theme is  

The Schuylkill During the Civil War  

June 1-7, 2013     

  • New this year!! During the first two weeks in April we are accepting registrations from full-trip registrants only.  This is being done to ensure that people who wish do the full trip don’t miss out on the first two days, which fill up very quickly. Registration for all other participants will open April 15!
  • For the first time this year we are offering online registration. You can register online by visiting  http://www.regonline.com/15thschuylkillriversojourn. After you register online, you will still need to download several waivers and medical forms that must be filled out and mailed in with original signatures. Links to these forms will be available on your registration confirmation form. They can also be found on our website at www.schuylkillriver.org/sojourn/aspx.
  • If you do not wish to register online, you can download a registration form here and mail or fax it to us.
  • For more information, a general itinerary for each day, or to view photos of past sojourns click here or call the Schuylkill River Heritage Area at 484-945-0200.
  •  Our 2013 Sojourn outfitter is Doug Chapman, owner of Take it Outdoors Adventure Group. Our guides will once again be Alan and Betsy Quant from Canoe Susquehanna.

The Schuylkill River Sojourn is a 7-day, 112-mile guided paddle from Schuylkill Haven to Boathouse Row in Philadelphia that is organized annually by the Schuylkill River Heritage Area.  Participants can register for one day or the entire week.

 

Photos: 2012 Sojourn Courtesy Jeremy Quant

Rails and River Towns Ride sign-up today! Last day to get free T-shirt!

Photo and info courtesy of the Schuylkill River Heritage Area.

Support the Schuylkill River Heritage Area with a round-trip bike ride on September 22nd along the Schuylkill River Trail from Pottstown to Birdsboro featuring optional walking tours and a presentation on railroad history.

When: September 22, 2012 (Rain Date Sunday September 23)   

 

Time:   7:30-8:30 a.m. check-in

       8:30 a.m. Presentation on PA Railroad history

       9:00 a.m. rides begin  

 

Where: Check-in at 140 College Drive, Pottstown, PA 19464

 

Cost: $25 adults (age 16 & up); $20 members; $15 children ages 11-15; 10 & under free. If registering after 9/5/12 cost increases to: $30 adults; $25 members; and $20 children 11-15.

 

Amenities: Refreshments provided. Free T-shirts to all who register by Sept. 5.  Ride support and complimentary bike safety checks provided by TriCounty Bicycles, of Pottstown.   

 

More information: Call 484-945-0200 or visit www.schuylkillriver.org to learn more.   

 

Helmets are required. Due to the width of the trail, no bicycle trailers will be permitted during the event.   

Three Ride Options to Choose From!  

  • 18-mile, round-trip ride from the Schuylkill River Heritage Area headquarters in Pottstown to Birdsboro, with a 45-minute guided walking tour of historic Birdsboro.
  • 20-mile Pottstown to Birdsboro ride with a loop trail in Union Township and no walking tour
  • 9-mile round-trip ride with guided tour of Historic Morlatton Village’s four 18th century buildings.

This is the first ride in the Schuylkill River Trail Bike Tour Series, a new multi-year series that supports the Schuylkill River Heritage Area. Each event will feature a unique combination of biking and history.

Special thanks to our sponsors:

TriCounty Bicycles, Universal Machine Company,  Montgomery County Community College, B&G Glass, Gallen Insurance, Boscov’s Department Store, CarePlex, Main Line Financial, Traffic Planning & Design, 422 Commercial Realty, Tim’s Ugly Mug, Vintage Connections, William Knight, Historic Preservation Trust of Berks Co., Barwis Construction, LLC.

 

Schuylkill River Heritage Area
140 College Drive
Pottstown, Pennsylvania 19464

MCCC to Host Ninth Annual Scenes of Schuylkill River Heritage Area Art Show

As with the prior two posts, this comes to us via the prolific Alana Mauger, Communications Director for Montgomery County Community College.

Montgomery County Community College will host the Ninth Annual Scenes of the Schuylkill River Heritage Area Art Show from Aug. 29 through Oct. 19 at the West Campus Art Gallery, North Hall, 16 High St., Pottstown.

An opening reception will be held on Wednesday, Sept. 19, from 5-7 p.m., and will include refreshments and live music. The exhibit and reception are free and open to the public.

Sponsored by the Schuylkill River National & State Heritage Area, the art show features 76 original pieces of artwork done in a variety of styles and media. The artwork highlights the beauty and unique aspects of the Schuylkill River Heritage Area—a 1.2 million-acre area that includes the Schuylkill River watershed within Schuylkill, Berks, Chester, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties.

Dawn at Valley Forge by Catherine Grygiel

Artist Catherine Grygiel, Souderton, won Best of Show for her pastel “Dawn at Valley Forge.” She will receive $300 and an award of distinction valued at $1,000 from North Penn Art, Lansdale, for the creation of giclee prints of her work.

Second place with a $200 prize went to Jonathan Bond, Kempton, Berks County, for his oil on wood panel, “Carousel,” and third place with a $100 prize went to Materese Roche, Buckingham, Bucks County, for her oil on canvas, “Sunset Over the Grasslands.”

Four honorable mentions were awarded to: Rich Sassaman for his acrylic, “High School Runner;” Sherry McVickar for her oil, “English Style Schuylkill River Barn;” Lori Quinque-Quinn for the oil painting “Hunsberger’s Used Cars;” and David W. Thomas for his silver gel photograph “Foundation.”

 This year’s juror, Ross L. Mitchell, executive director of the Violette de Mazia Foundation, Wayne, selected the winning entries.

“It was a pleasure judging the Schuylkill River Heritage Area Art Show this year,” said Mitchell, who started his career as a painter and studied at the Barnes Foundation with Violette de Mazia. “The final selections were all of high quality and portrayed a wonderful cross-section of views of the diversity of the Schuylkill River area. Artists reinterpret our surrounding environment and let us see it anew through their unique and individual lens.”

Mitchell previously served as the Gallery Director at the Barnes Foundation in Merion Station where he led the $13 million renovation of the gallery. He was also Senior Associate for Viart Corporation, a Manhattan based art-consulting firm. Currently, he is the president of the Philadelphia Sketch Club, serves as a commissioner on the Lower Merion Historical Commission and as a board member of the Lower Merion Historical Society.

Most works are available for sale, and a portion of all proceeds benefits the Schuylkill River Heritage Area.      

Gallery hours are: Monday-Thursday, 8 a.m.-9:30 p.m., and Friday, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. For more information contact, the SRHA at 484-945-0200 or MCCC Galleries Director Holly Cairns at 215-619-7349, hcairns@mc3.edu.

The Schuylkill River National and State Heritage Area, managed by the non-profit Schuylkill River Greenway Association, uses conservation, education, recreation, cultural and historic preservation and tourism as tools for community revitalization and economic development. For more information about the SRHA visit www.schuylkillriver.org.

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