Calendar of Events: July 2019

actorsSherlock Holmes Play

Actors Circle will present the mystery thriller, Sherlock Holmes and The White Chapel Murders, by Lou Bisignani, at Providence Playhouse, 1256 Providence Road, Scranton,  on July 11, 12, 13 and 14. Thursday, Friday and Saturday performances are at 8 p.m., with a Sunday matinee at 2 p.m., Tickets are $12 general admission; $10 senior citizens, and $6, students.

The show is being diirected by Lou Bisignani, with Katie VonBergen is assistant director.

Scott Rave will portray Sherlock Holmes and Mark Fryer playing Dr. John Watson.

AARP Chapter Events

AARP Chapter 3731 North East Pennsylvania, will host a residents’ bingo on Friday, July 12, from 1:30 to 4 p.m. at Gino J. Merli Veterans Center, Scranton. A patio picnic with bingo, games, and a basket raffle will be held on Monday, Aug. 5, from noon to 4 p.m. at Arcaro & Genell, Old Forge, on the tented patio. A general meeting will be held on Tuesday, Sept. 3, at Asbury United Methodist Church. For information call Carl Yanowski, president, at 570-347-5687. 

bernies runJuly 4th Bernie’s Run

On July 4, AllOne Charities will once again present the 36th Annual Bernie’s Memorial 3 Mile Walk/Run at 8:30 a.m. at River Street, Wilkes-Barre. The flat run will benefit the Greater Carbondale, Greater Pittston, Greater Scranton, Wayne County and Wilkes-Barre Family YMCAs. Bernie’s Run is held in memory of Bernie Hargadon.

Bernie was a past YMCA director, prime athlete, and originator of this race who passed away from an unforeseen genetic heart condition. Bernie’s dream was to create an achievable race for everyone. In 1984, he did it, and thousands of runners and walkers have achieved Bernie’s dream since. Additionally, we are proud to offer a free ½ Mile Kids Fun Run!

To learn more or to register, visit email Lauranel Banks, Wellness Director and Race Coordinator at the Wilkes-Barre Family YMCA, at      

Rummage Sale

SS. Cyril and Methodius  Ukrainian Catholic Church will be having its 9th annual fundraiser Rummage Sale at St. Cyril’s School Gym, 133 River St., Olyphant, on Sept. 20, 21 and 22.

The sale features food, raffle baskets. For information on the sale or making donations, contact Very Rev. Nestor Iwasiw  (570- 291-4451) or Lauren Telep, chairman, (570-383-0319) or visit the Church website:

February is American Heart Month

american-heartmonth-3February is American Heart Month, and as a leading community-based organization committed to improving the nation’s health, the Greater Scranton & Wilkes-Barre Family YMCAs urge everyone to get a blood pressure screening.

Revised blood pressure guidelines from American Heart Association mean that nearly half of all Americans (46 percent) have high blood pressure. High blood pressure is often referred to as “The Silent Killer” because there are typically no warning signs or symptoms.

To address the prevalence of heart disease, the Y has made a national commitment to the Million Hearts campaign, an initiative spearheaded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, CDC and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services that aims to prevent one million heart attacks and strokes.

While high blood pressure and heart disease are serious conditions the good news is that a healthy heart is an achievable goal through lifestyle changes such as lowering sodium intake, eating healthier and getting more physical activity. Getting help can be as easy as going to your local Y and take part in the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program.

YMCAThe Greater Scranton & Wilkes-Barre Family YMCAs are increasing the availability of the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program – which is part of the CDC-led National Diabetes Prevention Program. The YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program helps adults at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes adopt and maintain healthy lifestyles to help reduce their chances of developing the disease. Type 2 diabetes is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease and people with diabetes are twice as likely to have heart disease or suffer a stroke as those who do not have it.

The program provides a supportive environment where participants work together in a small group to learn about eating healthier, increasing their physical activity and making other behavior changes with the goal of reducing body weight by 7 percent in order to reduce their risk for developing diabetes. A trained lifestyle coach leads the program over a 12-month period. Increased physical activity and moderate weight loss not only reduce diabetes risk, but also have an impact on lowering blood pressure and cholesterol. For more information on the YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program, contact Patti Goodenow at 570-828-3230.

Reducing sodium intake is a great way to keep your heart healthy. Per the American Heart Association (AHA), too much sodium in your system puts an extra burden on your heart and blood vessels. In some people, this may lead to or raise high blood pressure. Everyone, including kids, should reduce their sodium intake to less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium a day (about 1 teaspoon of salt). Having less sodium in your diet may help you lower or avoid high blood pressure.

“There are many factors in keeping your heart healthy and having a handle on your blood pressure and sodium intake are effective tools in the preventing heart disease,” said Patti Goodenow, Senior Director of Chronic Disease Prevention, Greater Scranton & Wilkes-Barre Family YMCAs.  “Whether you have high blood pressure, are at risk for heart disease or want to keep your heart healthy the Y has resources that can help achieve better health.”

In addition to programs and services offered, the Y offers the following tips from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to help reduce sodium in your diet.  

  1. Think fresh: Most of the sodium Americans eat is found in processed foods. Eat highly processed foods less often and in smaller portions—especially cheesy foods, such as pizza; cured meats, such as bacon, sausage, hot dogs, and deli/luncheon meats; and ready-to-eat foods, like canned chili, ravioli and soups. Fresh foods are generally lower in sodium.
  2. Enjoy home-prepared foods: Cook more often at home—where you are in control of what’s in your food. Preparing your own foods allows you to limit the amount of salt in them.
  3. Fill up on veggies and fruits—they are naturally low in sodium: Eat plenty of vegetables and fruits—fresh or frozen. Eat a vegetable or fruit at every meal.
  4. Adjust your taste buds:  Cut back on salt little by little—and pay attention to the natural tastes of various foods. Your taste for salt will lessen over time. Additionally, keep salt off the kitchen counter and the dinner table and substitute spices, herbs, garlic, vinegar or lemon juice to season foods.
  5. Boost your potassium intake: Choose foods with potassium, which may help to lower your blood pressure. Potassium is found in vegetables and fruits, such as potatoes, beet greens, tomato juice and sauce, sweet potatoes, beans (white, lima, kidney), and bananas. Other sources of potassium include yogurt, clams, halibut, orange juice and milk.

The Greater Scranton YMCA offers a community of diverse individuals who can support all people in meeting their health and well-being goals. Learn more by visiting or or by stopping into your local Y.  

YMCA Secures Grants to Support Summer Programs

YMCAThe Greater Scranton and Wilkes-Barre Family YMCAs are pleased to announce they have received grants from the PPL Foundation to support Power Scholars Academy at the Wilkes-Barre Family YMCA, $5,000 grant award, and the Summer Learning Loss Prevention Program at the Greater Scranton YMCA, $4,000 grant award.

Without access to educational activities during the summer, children who are already behind in reading are at risk of falling further behind their peers. For children who need additional help with their reading skills, the Greater Scranton YMCA is proud to offer a learning loss prevention program for children entering first and second grades at the Mid Valley Elementary Center.

The Summer Learning Loss Prevention Program, one of three of YMCA of the USA’s signature achievement gap programs, supports cognitive, physical and social-emotional growth while focusing on helping children read at grade level and is currently ongoing.

“Thanks to the generosity of partners like the PPL Foundation, the Greater Scranton & Wilkes-Barre Family YMCAs are able to continue making strides towards combating the achievement gap,” said Trish Fisher, President & CEO, Greater Scranton YMCA.

“With their support, along with the support of all of our program partners, our Ys are able to serve the children from our communities who need these programs most.”

The PPL Foundation awards annual grants through a competitive application and review process.

“The challenges we face in our communities are complex and there is no easy solution. The goal of the PPL Foundation is to bring together people, ideas and resources to tackle some of these challenges collectively,” said Lissette Santana, chief operating officer of the PPL Foundation.

“We’re proud to be able to support nonprofit organizations working to address the issues most relevant in our community.