Celia Eagen, a principal dancer in the Ballet Theatre of Scranton senior company, recently completed a five week intensive virtual ballet program with Philadelphia’s School of the Pennsylvania Ballet.
A rising senior at Dunmore High School, Celia has been dancing for 13 years at Ballet Theatre under the direction of Joanne Arduino . She has received training in ballet, jazz, modern, musical theater, dance history, and contemporary.
Over the years, Celia has attended various summer programs to further her dance training. She has attended programs at The Rock School for Dance Education, Philadelphia in 2016 and 2017, The School of the Pennsylvania Ballet in 2018 and 2020, and the Boston Ballet School in 2019.
At Ballet Theatre of Scranton, Celia has been featured as Dewdrop Fairy and Clara (The Nutcracker), Moyna (Giselle), Spring Fairy (Cinderella), and most recently as Squirrel Nutkin (The Tales of Beatrix Potter.)
At Dunmore High School, Celia is among the top five ranked students in her 2021 graduating class and has served as Class Treasurer for the past two years. This past year, Celia was named an AP Scholar by the College Board and was awarded the Challenge Program Academic Excellence Award. She is a Varsity Cheerleader for the Dunmore Bucks and will serve as an Editor in Chief for the Class of 2021 yearbook. She is a four-year member of the Spanish Club, Health Careers Club, T.A.C.T. (Teens Against Commercial Tobacco) Club, S.A.D.D. Club, Health Careers Club, and Earth Club at DHS.
Celia is the daughter of Attorney Todd and Mary Gene Eagen.
Mike and Therese Brunetti stand with his mother Anne Brunetti at the family business which has now officially been sold.
By Steve Svetovich
Anyone who has lived in Green Ridge/Dunmore and surrounding area since 1958, is sure to have been to Brunetti’s Pizza and Deli, corner of Sanderson Avenue and Deacon Street in the Green Ridge section of Scranton.
And you are sure to know Anne Brunetti, Dunmore, 88, and her son Mike and his wife Therese. The Brunetti family have been fixtures at the exact same Green Ridge location since 1958.
But not much longer. The Brunettis sold the long standing business this past Aug. 15.
And it’s not easy to say goodbye. Not for the Brunetti family or their long standing customers– some of whom are still around from the opening of the business by Pasquale and Anne Brunetti in 1958.
Anne Brunetti is pictured at the deli where she has been a fixture for six decades.
Pasquale Brunetti ran the business with his wife until his passing in 1974. The couple’s son Mike started working in the business through his high school years beginning in 1969. Mike went into it on a full time basis with his mom after his dad’s passing.
Anne’s sister Mary also became a fixture and a friendly, smiling face behind the counter at Brunetti’s until her passing several years ago.
Mike’s wife Therese also became a bigger part of the business over the years and is part owner with her husband and mother-in-law.
Known for their signature fresh counter Italian hoagies, delicious pizza, texas weiners, Mike’s signature chilli, beer selection, soft drinks, ice cream freezer and various other menu items, Brunetti’s always kept prices low for its loyal customers.
Customers became family to the Brunetti family.
Customer’s children, grandchildren and even great-grandchildren became customers.
And Dunmore’s Anne Brunetti was behind the counter for all 62 years of it.
Eating pizza, a hot dog, salad, or hoagie in “the back room,” a secret treasure to the loyalist of customers was a special treat.
The family behind the landmark in Green Ridge made its final decision to sell the establishment in early July.
The Brunetti family mulled the idea of selling the business last year. They celebrated 62 years in business on St. Patrick’s Day. Two days later, the COVID-19 pandemic spurred a statewide business shutdown.
The Brunettis suffered a scare after celebrating their 62nd anniversary St. Patrick’s Day. Their son, a cancer survivor, was diagnosed with COVID-19.
“Our son Mike called us from Philadelphia,” said Therese Brunetti. “He told us he had the virus. And his girlfriend had it too. He was considered high risk as a cancer survivor. He became very ill with COVID-19.
“It really rocked us. We felt shocked and helpless.
“Mike and myself have immune-suppressing diseases, so we decided to close. We stayed closed for a time even after businesses were allowed to open. Then we opened up for outdoor pickup service for a while, but it became too much of a high risk for us due to COVID. We talked to Anne about it and decided as a family to sell the business. With the COVID-19 pandemic in full force, running the business became too risky for us.
“The people who walk in here every day are like family to us. That is what we love the most.
“We held a community service week for our customers this past July. We sold the pizza and hoagies for a final week and were able to say goodbye. The community rallied for us and we were sold out every night.
“We needed to do that. We wanted to say goodbye. A lot of tears were shed.”
The Brunetti family even became national celebrities with interviews coming from all directions, including two days with a filming crew from NBC News late last month.
“They are doing a segment as to how the COVID-19 pandemic has effected small businesses,” said Therese.
“We have been extremely emotional,” Mike and Therese Brunetti said. “This community is part of our family. We have seen our customer’s children and grandchildren grow.”
Anne Brunetti wanted to make sure to thank her loyal customers over the past six-plus decades. “It’s been sentimental, emotional,” she said. “I thank everyone.”
A closing date has not been set for the sale. Mike Brunetti can be found at the establishment on some afternoons selling the business’s final stock of beer, soda and soft drinks. And to be there for those who want to say one more goodbye.
The Double “R” Twirlettes recently held their recital on the “Big Screen” at the Circle Drive-In. It was a night to celebrate the Twirlettes and their hard work, dedication, and resilience during this very unprecedented season. Since the show was prerecorded and viewed at the drive-in, the Twirlettes were able to enjoy safely while following current restrictions.
Group members who participated included, from left: Jordan Gioupis, Kali Mercatili, and Allie Taffera.