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March, at last! January, in a carb coma, rolls lazily into February’s period of hibernation. And then comes March with the promise of spring. We stretch our waking muscles, peering out windows at sun that is stronger, the slant of its rays shifting. Old Man Winter may have a last hurrah, but his days are numbered.

The morning papers carry baseball news. Our elementary schools are celebrating Dr. Seuss’ birthday with reading events and dress up days. Revelers will go from party to party on Fat Tuesday and St. Patrick’s Day. The amount of food our churches and volunteer organizations will cook is unparalleled in any other season. Potato pancakes, pizza, pierogi and halushki are the sacrifices we make on Lenten Fridays.

In the middle of the month, as our clocks spring forward, our community will develop March Madness. We’ll have fun filling in brackets, something my daughter is unusually good at using a totally irrational method which befuddles my son-in-law. At the same time, I think of my dad, an Irishman who loved watching “The Quiet Man.” I was sorely disappointed last year when I couldn’t find it on the telly.

March is also Women’s History Month. As an old history teacher, I have a perspective on how history has been taught through the years. When I was a kid, women were barely mentioned in our lessons. Think Betsy Ross. We’ve made progress and definitely come a long way in our awareness of women’s contributions. If you haven’t seen the movie “Hidden Figures,” get it. Many of you can rent it from Netflix or find it on Amazon Prime. If you don’t have those or any of the “premier channels” on TV, head on over to the library. You will be able to borrow, for free, the DVD and books about any number of heroic women.

Even our library, intended for more cerebral pursuits, offers temptations like Gertrude Hawk candy bars and, at the end of the month, a Girl Scout cookie pop up shop. After all, what is a movie, good book, or basketball game without a snack?

I guess there’s one last carb coma month until we bust outdoors in April.

St. Barbara’s Lenten food sales and services

St. Barbara’s Parish will sell Lenten foods beginning on Ash Wednesday, March 6, and every Friday thereafter during the Lenten season. The event is strictly take out and no pre-orders will be taken. Food will be available from 4 to 7 p.m. and sales are strictly cash only.

The selection includes: potato pancakes, $5 for half a dozen or $10 per dozen (13); pierogi, $5 for half a dozen; halushki, $5 per quart. The Good Friday menu is yet to be determined.

Ash Wednesday ashes will be distributed at St. Anthony’s Church, St. Barbara’s Parish, at 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. with Mass and ashes, and at 3:30 p.m. for ashes and service only. Stations of the Cross will be held every Friday during Lent at 3:30 p.m. Confessions will be heard every Monday from 6-7 p.m.

Wyoming U.M. Church ham and cabbage dinner

Wyoming United Methodist Church will hold a ham and cabbage dinner from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Saturday, March 16. Cost is $10 for adults and $5 for children ages 5 to 12. The dinner is dine in or take out. For ticket information, call 570-693-2821. The church is located at 376 Wyoming Ave., and is handicap accessible.

Church theater trip

Wyoming United Methodist Church will host a bus trip to the Hunterdon Hills Playhouse in Hampton, New Jersey, on Friday, May 17, to see “Over the River and Through the Woods.” Cost is $98 and includes bus, show, meal and gratuities. For reservations or information, call Audrey at 570-693-0905 or 570-693-2821.

West Wyoming Hose

Company pizza sale

During lent, from March 22 to April 12, West Wyoming Hose Company No. 1 will sell pizza from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Fridays. Baked and unbaked pizza will be available to order for pick up by calling 570-693-1811.

West Wyoming sanitation fee reminder

West Wyoming Borough reminds residents sanitation fees are now past due and the penalty fee of $300 is in effect.

Wyoming Free Library news

The Wyoming Free Library S.T.E.A.M. Club meets at 11 a.m. the last Saturday of every month. The first session, which focused on magnetism, was a huge success. The March class will be Lego Volcano. Children will build a volcano and make it erupt. What fun!

The club is open to ages 6 and up, however, registration is full and new names are being put on a waiting list. Call the library for information at 570-693-1364.

The library will hold a fill-a-bag book sale in April, so gather up your gently used books for donation to this important fundraiser. Adult fiction, children’s books, non-fiction, DVDs and audiobooks are welcome. Please, no textbooks, encyclopedias, medical books, catalogs, Reader’s Digest, condensed books, or old, moldy books.

A children’s market is held at the library the first Saturday of the month. The Commission on Economic Opportunity distributes canned goods, non-perishables, fruits and vegetables to any Luzerne County family with children. After the children receive their food, what is left over is boxed for senior citizens to pick up later in the day. Registration is required. Applications are available at the library. For reservations or information, call 570-693-1364.

The library is soliciting donations to replace its eight public computers. Computer use is free to all who need it, young and old. Not much can be accomplished without a computer and internet access, something that is cost prohibitive for many. The library allows visitors to do research, write papers, apply for jobs, check email, and just pass time surfing the web. Donations can be made on Facebook or mailed directly to the library, 358 Wyoming Ave.

Wyoming garbage fee

The 2019 Wyoming garbage fee is now due. Face value of $200 is in effect until May 15. After that, the cost will be $250.

Wyoming Council meeting

Wyoming Council will meet Monday, March 11. Executive session is at 6:30 p.m. Work session is at 7 p.m. and the council meeting begins at 7:30.

WA Title I breakfast meeting

Wyoming Area will host its first Title I parent/child breakfast meeting at 9 a.m. Saturday, March 9, at the Wyoming Area Secondary Center Cafeteria in Exeter. The meeting will focus on how parents can improve their child’s academic success by being involved with their child’s education and communicating with Title I staff.

Title I parents who, along with their children, attended the Pennsylvania State Parent Advisory Council conference last year at Seven Springs Resort in Champion, will be the guest speakers. They also will be awarded Parent Leadership Certificates for their attendance at the state conference and will share their experiences and educational information obtained from the conference on how parents can help improve their child’s academic skills at home.

Rita Mauriello, Title I coordinator, will discuss the district’s Title I reading program, federal policies and review any revisions of the policies.

Parents attending the breakfast meeting will receive packets containing Title I forms, information and policies, along with a book for each child. The district’s Title I reading specialists also will attend and be available to confer with parents. All parents of students enrolled in Wyoming Area’s Title I Reading Program are encouraged to attend. The meeting will begin right after breakfast.

Military scholarships

The Exeter, West Pittston, and West Wyoming American Legion posts are each offering financial awards to Wyoming Area graduating seniors who have enlisted in one of the branches of the armed services, or who are planning to enlist. The only prerequisite is to present official commitment papers to Teddy Rabel, guidance secretary, no later than 2:30 p.m. Friday, April 5. Awards will be presented at the Wyoming Area’s Scholarship Celebration on Thursday, May 23.

Exeter veterans events

Exeter Events announced a veterans celebration will be held at the town hall, Lincoln Street and Wyoming Avenue, from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, May 18. Banners to honor veterans or current service men and women are being sold now. Cost is $225, or $25 to renew. To order a banner, call 570-239-5260 or email exeterevents2018@gmail.com.

Exeter refuse stickers

Exeter Borough refuse stickers for 2019 are now available. Prices remain the same as last year. Regular fee of $180 is in effect through March 31; $130 for senior citizens age 65 and older. Proof of age is required. On April 1, the stickers will go into penalty and the price for anyone who hasn’t purchased a sticker will be $250. Stickers can be purchased at the Exeter Borough Building from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday. Stickers also can be purchased by mail by sending a self addressed, stamped envelope to Exeter Borough Refuse Department, 1101 Wyoming Ave., Exeter, PA 18643. Please use a long business size envelope. For information, call Lynda at 570-654-3001, ext. 2.

Exeter Council meeting

The next Exeter Council meeting will be held at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 5.

Barbara Bullions writes about Exeter, Wyoming and West Wyoming. To include an item in her column, email barbarabullions@gmail.com or call 570-301-2185 by Monday.