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Monday, many of us will celebrate Labor Day with a family cookout in the backyard. But next Saturday, we can leave the cooking to someone else at the Avoca Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Avoca VFW Post 8335 will host its annual chicken barbecue dinner from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 7, at the post home, 915 Main St. Takeouts will be available too.

The menu includes chicken, baked potato, corn, cranberry sauce and dessert.

Tickets are $12 each and can be purchased by calling the post home at 570-457-7673 or from any member.

Fire department fund drive

The Avoca Fire Department’s annual fund drive is underway. Residents should have received their appeal letter in the mail. This project is the department’s major fundraiser of the year and supports all of its operating costs.

In addition to meeting their annual expenses, the department is hoping they will receive enough financial support through the appeal to make necessary repairs to the department’s shared Emergency Services Building, primarily replacing the leaking roof.

Donations of all amounts are welcome and can be made by following the instructions listed in the annual appear letter or online via PayPal at avocafire.net.

The members thank you in advance for your generosity.

Plane Street Park closed

Residents are reminded the Plane Street Park is closed until further notice for repairs, maintenance and improvements.

Avoca Borough thanks everyone for their cooperation and hopes to open up the park again soon.

VFW Auxiliary meeting

Due to the Labor Day holiday, the Avoca Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 8335 Auxiliary meeting will take place at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 4, at the post home, 915 Main St., instead of its regular Monday date. President June Fitzgerald will preside. The post’s chicken dinner will be discussed at this time. Members are needed to work at the dinner. The meeting will be hosted by Wendy Radle and Betty Lewis.

Food pantry

Avoca Food Pantry will be open at 4 p.m. Thursdays, Sept. 5 and 19, at Bethel United Methodist Church, 532 Main St. Food can be picked up in the rear entry of the building.

Volunteers are needed to unload and distribute food at 1:30 p.m.

Flag football

The inaugural season of the Avoca Youth Flag Football League will begin Saturday, Sept. 7, at the Avoca Teener League Baseball Field, Commerce Street.

The teams will be divided into age groups by the following school grades: first and second; third and fourth; fifth and sixth, and seventh and eighth.

Individual players or full teams are invited to register. Teams will be capped at nine players each. The cost is $35 per player and a $45 maximum per household. There are no residency requirements to play.

For information or to register, please call or text Jeremy Collins at 570-407-6409 by the Saturday, Aug. 31 registration deadline.

All proceeds will benefit the Avoca-Dupont Little League and the Avoca Fire Department.

Little League meeting

Avoca-Dupont Little League will meet at 6 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 8, at the Avoca Borough Municipal Building, 950 Main St. League officers for the 2019-20 season will be elected at this time. The agenda includes the fall season, continuation of the league’s combining with Pittston City and Duryea as well as all regular league business. Everyone is encouraged to attend.

Little League ceremony

The Luzerne County Council will honor the Greater Pittston Area Little League 8/9/10 and 10/11/12 All-Star teams, as well as the Pittston Area Junior Softball team for their accomplishments this year. The event will take place at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 10, at the Luzerne County Courthouse.

9/11 Mass

Avoca Fire Department and Queen of the Apostles Parish will co-host their annual 9/11 Memorial Mass at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 11, at the church, 715 Hawthorne St. Prior to the Mass, there will be a procession from the Avoca Fire Department, 740 Main St., to the church. Refreshments will be served in the parish hall following the Mass.

Queen of the Apostles news

Queen of the Apostles Parish’s religious education classes, which are open to students entering kindergarten through seventh grade, will begin Sunday, Sept. 15, with class from 9 to 10:15 a.m. in the former St. Mary’s School, 742 Spring St. The confirmation class will meet every two weeks from 5 to 6:30 p.m. in the rectory.

Registration forms have been mailed. Anyone who did not receive one or who wants to enroll their child in classes should call the parish office at 570-457-3412. Completed registration forms are due by Friday, Sept. 13.

Following the first day of class, the parish will celebrate its annual Back to School Mass at 10:30 a.m. at the church, 715 Hawthorne St.

The Queen of the Apostles Social Concerns/Respect Life Ministry will have a fall craft fair from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 28, in the parish hall, 742 Spring St.

Along with a variety of beautiful crafts, there also will be other types of vendors on hand.

In addition to the craft fair, there will be breakfast and lunch for sale and a raffle of prizes donated by the vendors and committee members. Treats also will be available for children.

Anyone interested in reserving an 8-foot space for $25 or a 16-foot space for $40 may contact the parish office at 570-457-3412 or Jane Maxwell at 570-335-8678. Vendor spaces are limited.

The parish announces the following meetings taking place in the rectory: women’s guild, 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 3; pastoral council, 7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 9; social concerns/respect life ministry, 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 12; worship committee, 6 p.m. Monday, Sept. 16; building and grounds committee, 6:30 p.m. Monday, Sept. 23, and finance committee, 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 24.

Farmers market

The Avoca Farmers Market is open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesdays in the parking area of 824 McAlpine St.

Alcoholics Anonymous

Alcoholics Anonymous meets at 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays in the basement of the Queen of the Apostles rectory, 715 Hawthorne St. Use the sunroom entrance.

Happy birthday

Happy birthday to Louise Durkin, who will celebrate her special day Sept. 2.

Happy birthday to Lori Appnel Boggetti, who will celebrate her special day Sept. 6.

That’s about it for this week, my friends. If you would like to send a birthday, anniversary or get well wish or have your organization’s upcoming meetings, events or fundraisers listed in next week’s edition of the Avoca community news, please contact me.

Thanks for reading, and have a great week!

Jackie Borthwick-Galvin writes about Avoca every week. To list an item, email jborthwickgalvin@pittstonprogress.com or call 570-301-2171 by 5 p.m. Monday.