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With the holiday over, we can look forward to the long stretch to spring. I’m not the outdoor sports type, so I spend the winter in my house dreaming about spring and summer. It wasn’t always this way. I had a career as a teacher and three children at home. That kept me occupied, but the figurative icing on the cake was my extra curricular activity. I ran the Wyoming Area Drama Club for about 20 years.

For me, January meant the beginning of a long, frantic journey obsessed with creating a world of make believe from an empty stage. Fall was spent choosing the spring play and ordering materials. Christmas break had me mentally preparing myself for the long haul, and as soon as we returned to school in January, it began. First, auditions and the usual excitement/disappointment when the cast was announced. Then we immediately jumped into rehearsal — five evenings a week. Dancing and singing with Betsy Novack. Acting rehearsals with me. Weekends were spent building sets designed by Tom Kearns and making props.

We worked furiously through snow and frigid weather, until one day, when we opened the doors to take something outside to paint, trees suddenly had buds and water trickled down streets from thawing snow. Kids shed heavy coats and everyone smiled a bit more. It was more than spring. It was showtime. For theater kids and teachers, it’s the most exciting time of the year. The kids sang on key, they knew the dance steps and had found their characters’ voices. Chuck Smith brought the orchestra in for dress rehearsals and there was a buzz throughout the school as tickets were sold and seats crossed off charts. The show ran for three days and then it was over. Strike the set and put everything salvageable away. It’s spring. Winter came and went without me noticing.

I’ve retired from teaching and directing plays. There is no way I could keep up that pace at my age. So now I find other ways to make winter seem shorter. I’ll plan trips that I will take, and fantasize about those I wish I could take. There is a pile of unread books I will get to and favorite TV shows to catch up on. I’ll sketch out a garden to plant, and tackle jobs inside my house. There are certainly plenty of those waiting for me, and for all of you as well, I’m sure.

But let’s not lock ourselves away too much. There is work to be done in our communities. Our local clubs, like the Lions and Rotary, are planning projects and could use help. Fire and ambulance houses always need volunteers. The library probably needs some assistance. How about attending a town council meeting? Can we help the scouts or church groups? Sometimes it means just attending a pasta dinner or buying a raffle ticket, but when we get involved, even if in a small way, our towns are enriched, And so are we.

It feels good to help and keeping busy will make winter fly. Next thing you know, you’ll open a door and see buds on the trees, and it will be time for the spring musical. I’m excited to tell you that WA will perform “Mama Mia” from April 5-7. This is not the show to miss. Mark your calendars. And, if you’re handy with tools or a paintbrush, volunteer a few hours on a Saturday helping Chuck Yarmey and the kids create magic on an empty stage.

Wyoming Hose Company

No. 1 fund drives

Wyoming Hose Company No. 1 would like to thank everyone who donated to its annual boot drive that recently took place at the Midway Shopping Center.

The hose company greatly appreciates everyone’s generosity during this year’s boot drive.

Also, as a reminder, the hose company’s annual fund drive donation request has recently been mailed. Please donate any amount you are able to give. If you misplaced the form or did not receive one, please drop you donation off at the borough building or mail it to: Wyoming Borough Building, 277 Wyoming Ave., attention Wyoming Hose Company No. 1.

Wyoming Hose Company No. 1 continues to serve Wyoming residents and businesses, as well as our neighboring communities through your donations.

Wyoming Borough notices

Wyoming Borough has announced temporary office hours. Offices will be open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. until noon.

Residents are asked to use the secure payment box located next to the entrance to pay for trash stickers, parking tickets and taxes.

Taxes are now in the penalty phase and are due by the end of the year.

There is a correction to the trash collection calendar. The last recycling day of this year was Dec. 19. In January, recyclables will be collected Jan. 9 and 23.

The 2019 garbage fee is now due.

The discount price of $190 is in effect until Feb. 6.

Face value of $200 will be until May 15.

After that, the cost will be $250.

Exeter refuse stickers

Exeter Borough refuse stickers for 2019 are now available. Prices remain the same as last year.

Stickers will be in rebate period until Feb. 28 at a cost of $150; $110 for seniors 65 and older. Proof of age is required. From March 1-31, the regular price of $180 will be charged; $130 for senior citizens.

April 1, the refuse stickers will go into penalty and the price for anyone who hasn’t purchased a sticker will be $250.

Exeter residents can purchase refuse stickers 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 return envelope when mailing the payment.

For information, call Lynda at 570-654-3001, ext. 2.

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