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Summer/Fall 2018 2018 Summer/Fall

Kennett Square Life

Magazine Magazine

David Ferron is back in the Saddle again - Page 48

Inside • Making sense of high tech • In the spirit of Renewal • Walking in the footsteps of the Wyeths Complimentary Copy


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Summer/Fall 2018

Kennett Square Life Table of Contents 8

Making sense of high tech

16

A small contribution can make a big impact

24

Q & A with Doug Doerfler

28

Walking in the footsteps of the Wyeths

40

Life is a satisfying arrangement

48

David Ferron is back in the Saddle again

58

Photo essay: ‘Say Cheese!’

64

In the spirit of Renewal

74

Kennett Square native trains TOPGUN pilots

24 48

8

28 Cover design by Tricia Hoadley Cover photograph by Jie Deng 6

Kennett Square Life | Summer/Fall 2018 | www.chestercounty.com


People who care

40

64

Letter from the Editor: Kennett Square is such a wonderful community because of its people. In this issue of Kennett Square Life, we profile just a few of the people who help to make Kennett Square what it is through their actions and work—and because they care about the community around them. There’s architect John Rosecrans of Renewal Dynamics, Inc. who specializes in saving neglected buildings of Chester County history and giving them a new purpose. Barn by barn, carriage house by carriage house, he’s taking our rich past and giving it to our future. We profile David Ferron, who is returning to Chester County after a decade in the New York City fashion industry. Ferron has opened a fashion design studio in Unionville. We talk to Catherine Marie Charlton, the acclaimed pianist, about “I Dream About This World,” which puts the Wyeth family’s artwork into music. We feature a story about Wayne Carr, a performer, arranger, accompanist, and instructor who has been sharing with others his lifelong love of the piano. Doug Doerfler selflessly serves the community as a member of Kennett Square Borough Council and as the president of the Southern Chester County Chamber of Commerce. He is the subject of the Q & A in this issue. Bob Pariseau is a pioneer behind the groundbreaking Amiga computer back in the 1980s. Today, he’s happiest helping people with their home systems. The work of the United Way of Southern Chester County is all about local people caring. This year, the annual campaign will allow $840,000 to be allocated to 26 different programs that help people living in southern Chester County. The photo essay finds photographer Jie Deng teaming up with style consultant Suzie Gaffney to meet with four local residents, who posed for their new profile photos. We hope you enjoy the stories and photos in Kennett Square Life, and we look forward to receiving your comments and suggestions for stories that we might work on in the future. We’re already planning the next issue, which will arrive in the fall.

Sincerely, Randy Lieberman, Publisher randyl@chestercounty.com, 610-869-5553 Steve Hoffman, Editor editor@chestercounty.com, 610-869-5553, ext. 13 Cover design by: Tricia Hoadley Cover photo: Jie Deng www.chestercounty.com | Summer/Fall 2018 | Kennett Square Life

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Kennett Square People|

Photo by John Chambless

Bob Pariseau in his media room, where he tests the latest home audio and video products. 8

Kennett Square Life | Summer/Fall 2018 | www.chestercounty.com


Making sense of high tech

The original Amiga 1000 computer had revolutionary resolution and multitasking capabilities.

Bob Pariseau is a pioneer behind the Amiga computer, but he’s happiest helping people with their home systems

By John Chambless Staff Writer

B

ob Pariseau has always worked on the cutting edge of technology. Today, he’s a consultant in the rarefied world of audio, video and home theater equipment, and back at the dawn of the 1980s, he was present at the birth of a landmark home computer. Tech nerds revere his name, and the cult that surrounds the early Amiga computer system regards him as a founding father. For his part, Pariseau is slightly surprised that the Amiga, which faded away in the 1990s, still attracts devotees, but he’s much more interested in what’s happening now. First, a little history. “I grew up in Pennsylvania, and went to Princeton and then Harvard, studying theoretical astrophysics,” Pariseau said during an interview at the Kennett Square townhome he shares with his partner, local artist Dan Chow. “That’s physics, math and computer programming. The theoretical

side of astonomy is all about inventing models of what you think is going on. Then you build a computer program to try and figure out the consequences of your model. I was doing my doctoral work, and it suddenly dawned on me that all these guys were hanging around Harvard College Observatory with nothing to do. It turns out astronomers are notoriously long-lived. Which means that the number of tenured academic positions that opens up is even less than you might expect. And I figured out that I liked the programming more than the astronomy.” At the dawn of the home computer age, the late 1970s, Pariseau worked in California for companies making business computers, then in 1983 he was working at a company called Tandem that made mainframe computers. “I got wind of a startup company that was being formed to make a small computer,” he said. “That was very different than what I was doing at Tandem, but I thought, ‘Why not?’ “That company was Amiga Corporation at the time,” he Continued on Page 10 www.chestercounty.com | Summer/Fall 2018 | Kennett Square Life

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Bob Pariseau Continued from Page 9

continued. “It had been founded by Jay Miner and Dave Morse. Jay came from Atari. He had designed some of the important processing chips for them. And Dave came from consumer electronics marketing and sales business. Jay’s idea was that what had been done up to that point in making small computers, like the games machines, was really missing a bet. There was a lot of new stuff coming in computer graphics and processing power. Why not build a machine that would take advantage of all that stuff and still be affordable enough to be a home machine? “He was going to build a computer that built in some of the new tricks of high-end computer graphics, along with some of the tricks of games graphics from coin-operated arcade games,” Pariseau said. “They had the idea, but you can’t sell a computer without software, so they hired me to put together a team to make the software. That was May of 1983.” The unglamorous Silicon Valley office park where Amiga began was part of an explosion of competing programmers

and engineers. “We had seed money to do the software, but not much sleep,” Pariseau said of the team. “Everyone on the software development team was in one room.” As a group of young men in their 20s, the Amiga pioneers could pretty much make up their own rules. “One of the guys used to walk around the room with a pillow in his arms, so he could sleep while he walked,” Pariseau said, laughing. Pariseau is the one who went out and bought foam-rubber bats that were used around the office to smack each other and blow off steam during the marathon days and nights. In the headlong rush to refine computer technology and get a leg up on the competition ideas were sometimes shared. “Steve Jobs saw the Amiga computer prototype,” Pariseau recalled. “Apple had a product out called Lisa, a big, hulking box that was built on technology that had been put together by Hewlett-Packard for things like using a mouse, and having window-oriented graphics. It was a colossal flop. It was too expensive, too slow, and it just didn’t attract people. Jobs was in the process of trying to replace that system. He came by to take a look at what

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we were doing to see if there were pieces that might make sense to incorporate. At the time we were focused on being an entertainment product, so it wasn’t really a fit. “It’s never only one person Pariseau hosts the premiere who has a good idea,” he said. of the Amiga 1000 at “But there’s a lot of money Lincoln Center in 1985. involved in bringing a product to market. So there’s a divide between being open and keeping your real jewels secret. It wasn’t like he could walk off with the source code.” What made the Amiga stand out at the time was its ability to multitask. Several programs could be running at one time, and the system’s robust graphics in an era of green-screen blandness made it revolutionary. Microsoft Windows and the iMac had not yet been released. “The idea of the Amiga was to be a home entertainment computer,” Pariseau said. “When we launched it, it had enough power that you could do spreadsheets, it was very good at games, you had painting and animation, you could play movies. And if you had business stuff to do, there was a way to get to that, too. It was a very unusual combination of stuff for its time.” The Amiga needed to launch big at the Consumer Electronics Show in January 1984 and secure some investors. “The chips that Jay had designed were not done at that point,” Pariseau said. “So we built circuit board emulations of the chips – stacks of eight or 10 circuit boards, stacked together, all interwired. One stack represented a single chip. They were finicky, they tended to fail. All the software was brand new, so things could fail left and right. We were showing multitasking, high-end graphics, synthesized audio, and text-tospeech demonstrations, but the demos only worked if you ran them in a specific order.” To get the electronics from the Amiga headquarters to the Las Vegas show, “we boxed them up and bought a seat for each one of these stacks of electronics. The guys were all giddy from lack of sleep, so one of them put an airplane pillow on top of it, drew a face on it and put his jacket around it. I was on that flight.” At the show, Pariseau said, “We had all the gadgets out front of the booth, but most of the booth space was an enclosed room with a sign-in table to get in. The hope was that we would be in there, showing this thing to people, if we could get it working. “We tested everything and, magically, it worked. At the Continued on Page 12 www.chestercounty.com | Summer/Fall 2018 | Kennett Square Life

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Bob Pariseau Continued from Page 11

start of the show the next morning, we came in and saw the engineers were asleep on the floor inside the booth. They had stayed up all night to make another demo. It was the bouncing soccer ball. They had done it overnight. This was their first chance to play with the new gear.” That demo – which will bounce forever on the internet – featured a red-and-white ball bouncing up and down on the screen. It looked three-dimensional. And the “boing” noise it later made was courtesy of Pariseau smacking a metal garage door at the Amiga headquarters with one of the foam bats to get the right resonance. “We had investors and marketing guys come in. We opened to the press, to buyers from different companies. Everybody had to sign a non-disclosure agreement, but anybody could get in,” Pariseau said. “We were just trying to make some cachet about it. We got a buyer from Sears in there, we got to the point in the demo where we showed the bouncing ball, and this guy stood up, pointed at the screen and said, ‘That cannot be done!’”

The dazzling demonstration caught the interest of the Commodore Corporation, which bought the start-up Amiga. “That’s how we ended up getting funded to the point that we could finish,” Pariseau said. “With the money, we got the chips manufactured. Commodore had tremendous buying power, which meant that we could get components at far less cost than we anticipated.” On July 23, 1985, Commodore rented Lincoln Center in New York City for the splashy debut of the Amiga 1000 computer. A full orchestra performed, and Pariseau, in a tuxedo, ran the demonstration. “I had been doing all the demos for so long, and I knew the system,” he said of landing the spotlight gig. There was a photo of a baboon’s colorful face rendered at a revolutionary 4,096 colors at 640x400 resolution on the monitor. Blondie vocalist Debbie Harry and art icon Andy Warhol came out to do a demonstration of the Amiga’s groundbreaking paint program. Enthusiasm was high, but the crucial Christmas holiday was approaching. By October, there were only about 50 Amiga 1000 computers in existence, all being used for

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20-something programmer that had an agent, demonstrations and software development. By like a movie star. His employment was negotimid-November, when the units finally started ated by his agent, who got 10 percent of his appearing on store shelves, they had missed income. Living through it, you just have to let the buying window. Retailing at about $1,600 some of this stuff flow by without it impacting with the monitor, the system was pricey. you. It just gets too strange.” But Commodore, Pariseau said, could never He got out before Amiga – crushed by make up its mind what to do with the Amiga. Amiga designers came up “They wanted a business computer,” he said. with a 3-D bouncing ball Commodore’s indecision and infighting, and “Something to compete against PCs.” The demo that dazzled the outpaced by Atari – eventually imploded. industry in 1985. Microsoft and Apple raced ahead of the pack company’s TV commercials didn’t make much and left the Amiga frozen in time, but not of an impact, remaining vague about what the Amiga could do. Sales struggled, and the European arm entirely unloved. The computers, parts and software comof Commodore eventually stepped forward to take over mand high prices among collectors today, and in 2017, the Amiga project. “That was it for me,” Pariseau said. “It a company produced the A-EON Amiga X5000, using today’s technology and the classic computer’s name. didn’t make sense to stay.” Pariseau moved on from Amiga by clearing out his The early days of Silicon Valley “was such a weird period,” he said. “This was the same period where Atari San Francisco apartment in 2002 and eventually tossing was discovered burying unsold home computer games in everything related to the company. Today, he doesn’t have a hole in the desert to try and not have to record them as anything left. “I went to work for a couple of startups that were funded unsold inventory,” he said, laughing. “It was a little like old Hollywood, with all the old-time moguls. There was a Continued on Page 14

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Bob Pariseau Continued from Page 13

by Apple, including one called Taligent that was trying to make a new operating system, and then I moved to Oracle, the premier company in database systems,” he said. “Meanwhile, I still had a personal interest in home theater. I began writing for the online AVS Forum in about 2004, posting and answering people’s questions. I just looked recently, and I have put 34,000 posts on the site over 14 years – all for free. I was just helping people out,” he said, smiling. Along the way, he forged good working relationships with companies that produce high-end audio and video, and he got to test the equipment and write about it. “There are people out there who do home theater setup. They get paid to go into a house and do all the work, and they leave, and the person now has something that they have no idea how it works,” he said, laughing. “I wanted to work with people so they would actually learn this information themselves.” Last month, Pariseau launched www.bobpariseau. com to promote his services to businesses and people who want some of his expertise. His blog on the site is entertaining and still sufficiently deep in technical details to be worthwhile for audiophiles. In his column on “torch mode” settings, for instance, he reveals that the expensive large-screen TVs that people unpack and plug in are set to a factory default of being the brightest possible. That’s because they have to compete on store walls against dozens of other models. But those ultrabright settings might not be what you like, or what is best for your viewing choices, Pariseau said. Then he explains how to turn off, or turn down, what the manufacturers have given. And don’t get him started on wires. The ones that come with your appliances are junk and should be tossed. But don’t fall for the gimmick of overpriced cables, either. Those labeled “high speed cables” are often not able to handle today’s 4K video. Then there’s what he called the “snake oil” being peddled to consumers, such as a $5,000 power cord that’s three feet long, “but the wiring in your house was put in long ago by some contractor, and the wiring to the power plant has been chewed on by squirrels, but the last three feet is going to make all the difference,” he said. “There are people selling glass vases and glass balls to ‘improve the sound in your room.’ There are $500 power outlet replacements” that are supposed to provide better electricity to sensitive equipment. And it’s possible to spend $15,000 on a needle for your turntable. 14

Kennett Square Life | Summer/Fall 2018 | www.chestercounty.com


The incompatibility of HDMI cabling and equipment causes no end of headaches for consumers, who are often faced with a blue screen that tells them nothing can be done. “The system runs constantly on the edge of failure,” Pariseau said with a sigh. “For a lot of people, the TV is a potato,” he said. “There’s something inside it, but they don’t know what it is. It’s undifferentiated, and God help them if it breaks, because they don’t know how to fix it. They’re afraid to change things. Then, if they find a place like the AVS Forum, they start tentatively complaining – ‘It just doesn’t look right,’ or ‘Why is it doing this weird thing?’” he said. When you add in all the digital sound options and the viewing possibilities, “People have no idea what they daren’t touch,” he said. “It’s just a complete mystery to them.” As the technology races ever onward, “There’s no end of things for me to talk about,” Pariseau said. “You have some people who are just completely scared of the whole process and just live with what they can get. Other people

will pay someone to come in and set things up for them, but it’s a complete mystery. Then there are people who want to find out what’s really going on, so they can do it right and feel they have some control over it. They are the type who come to AVS Forum, and then to me. I have more fun helping people learn about this stuff.” Pariseau said he does still go to movie theaters, even though his basement setup is dazzlingly good, with surround sound and no annoying, popcorn-munching patrons. “For 3D movies, it looks better downstairs,” he said of his home theater. “Movie theater audio is set up to fill the whole theater, and it’s louder to overcome the crowd noise. There are definite advantages to seeing some types of movies with a crowd, because the crowd reaction is part of it. But for really enjoying the picture and audio quality, you can do better in a properly set up home theater. That’s just a fact.” For more information, visit www.bobpariseau.com. To contact Staff Writer John Chambless, email jchambless@chestercounty.com.

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Around Kennett Square|

A small contribution can make a big impact This year, the United Way of Southern Chester County is supporting 26 different programs that are changing lives in the community By Steven Hoffman Staff Writer

A

t the annual meeting on May 16, United Way of Southern Chester County (UWSCC) officials announced that $840,000 would be allocated to 26 different programs that provide essential services to the community—an increase of $40,000 over the previous year. The United Way of Southern Chester County emphasizes collaboration with its partner agencies like the Kennett Area Community Service, Oxford Neighborhood Services Center, Camp Dreamcatcher, the Oxford Area Senior Center, and Tick Tock Early Learning Center, so the true impact of the annual campaign is actually much greater than the allocation. By one measure, the United Way of Southern Chester County will have an impact on the southern Chester County community that amounts to $1,018,510 for the fiscal year. That’s another figure that was referenced in a presentation during the annual meeting. But there’s no way to truly measure the impact because the UWSCC supports so many programs and agencies that are changing lives every day. Consider how vital the Tick Tock Learning Center and the Kennett Study Buddies After School Program and the Kennett After School Association’s After-the-Bell program have been to children in the community, or how much of an impact The Garage Community & Youth Center have made on youngsters in West Grove and Kennett Square. Or how much assistance the Kennett Area Senior Center or Oxford Area Senior Center provides to senior citizens in Southern Chester County.

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Kennett Square Life | Summer/Fall 2018 | www.chestercounty.com

How valuable are the services provided by the Crime Victims’ Center of Chester County, which offers prevention and education programs for people in crisis? For people whose finances are hanging by a thread, the Oxford Neighborhood Services Center and Kennett Area Community Service can provide emergency help for people who are struggling to provide for their basic needs, like food, shelter, or heat. How can you measure the impact that heat in January or food at Thanksgiving might have for a family in peril? All of the aforementioned programs do what they do, in part, because of the funding that they receive from the United Way of Southern Chester County. Carrie Freeman, the CEO of the United Way for Southern Chester County uses every method possible to spread the word about how one small contribution can have a big impact on the southern Chester County community because of the impact that all those agencies and programs have on residents in need every single day. “The United Way of Southern Chester County has changed the lives of HIV/AIDS-impacted youth in our community by supporting Camp Dreamcatcher,” said that organization’s executive director Patty Hillkirk. “Since 2005, the UWSCC has sponsored HIV/AIDSimpacted youth from southern Chester County to attend our therapeutic and educational camp session. They have also supported our HIV/AIDS outreach and education programs to southern Chester County schools, organizations and community groups each year.” Jim McLeod, the director of the Oxford Area Senior Center, said that the UWSCC has been funding important programs at the senior center since 2001. Continued on Page 18


Courtesy photo

The United Way of Southern Chester County’s leadership team at the annual meeting that took place in Kennett Square on May 16. www.chestercounty.com | Summer/Fall 2018 | Kennett Square Life

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United Way Continued from Page 16

“Our original grant application requested funding to initiate our information and assistance program, which provides information and guidance to seniors as well as referrals to other non-profit and governmental agencies to assist them in their daily lives,� McLeod explained. “They continue to fund this very much-needed program 17 years later.� McLeod added that the UWSCC is extremely sensitive to the needs of senior citizens in the southern Chester County community. Indeed, it would be difficult to identify a group of people in the community that isn’t Courtesy photo helped by UWSCC-supported agencies and programs in one way or another. The United Way of Southern The Kennett Library operates an adult literacy program that is important to the Kennett Chester County’s new board Square community because it opens up many new opportunities to local residents. members include (left to right) Matt Decker, Lisa Moore, Dave According to Megan Walters, the director of the Kennett Library, the adult literacy proHalm, Allison Brunobszky, and gram helps people become full participants in the community. The program can help Karen Greig, who is not pictured. English as a Second Language (ESL) learners improve their English, but that’s really only one aspect of the program. It also provides tutors to people in the community who might want to improve their reading skills. The adult literacy program can also match tutors with people who are studying to take the citizenship test or the GED exam. At the end of the day, all these services help the participants become part of the community. Walters said that the Adult Literacy Program, which serves about 300 people each year, really fits with the library’s mission of being community-oriented. The funding from UWSCC is important for the adult literacy program. Continued on Page 20

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2018-2019 Allocations Summary:

$840,000

United Way Continued from Page 18

At the annual meeting, the UWSCC elected new board members and officers, recapped the results of the current campaign, and announced allocations to programs for the upcoming fiscal year. As a result of this year’s campaign, the United Way will allocate $387,820 for crisis intervention programs, $261,420 in programs that allow people to transition to independence through education, and $190,760 for promoting stability and sustainability. Combine that $840,000 with $40,000 allocated to the UWSCC unmet needs fund, another $16,051 in direct designations, and another $122,459 in in-house programs—volunteerism, public workshops, and mentoring agencies—the total impact is $1,018,510. John Moriarty, the president of the UWSCC board, said that the impact that the funding has on the community is what motivates so many people to help out year after year. In fact, Moriarty said, they conducted a survey of donors and impact and trust were identified as leading reasons why people support the UWSCC campaign. Moriarty shared that his first introduction to the work of the local United Way came when he gave to the campaign through

T L

Transitioning to Independence through Education Total $261,420 31%

Promoting Stability/Sustainability Total $190,760 23%

Crisis Intervention Total $387,820 46%

his workplace. At first, the money wasn’t being sent back to the United Way of Southern Chester County until Moriarty saw a UWSCC “Live Here, Give Here,” sign and looked at the UWSCC website. He was surprised by the level of need in southern Chester County, and made sure to direct his United Way contributions to the campaign that served the community in which he lives. He continued Continued on Page 22

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United Way Continued from Page 20

to give to the UWSCC campaign, he said, because of the impact—he knew that he was helping the most vulnerable neighbors who were in need. He could also trust that the dollars were being used effectively and efficiently because agencies receiving financial support are examined each year and held accountable for the funds awarded to them. The United Way of Southern Chester County has a unique way of determining how the money raised during the campaign each year is distributed to the agencies. A team of panelists—all residents or businesspeople with connections to southern Chester County—attend a series of presentations by officials of the agencies so that they could make decisions about allocations. It’s not an easy job. How much money gets distributed to a center that serves crime victims? What kind of support will the senior centers receive? How much for the Kennett Area Community Service or for the youth center that serves youngsters in the Kennett and West Grove communities? All the programs provide valuable services that strengthen the community.

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For the current campaign, the UWSCC received requests for funding totaling about $989,000, so while $840,000 is impressive, it does still fall short of meeting the full needs of the community. “I so wish that we could do more, and I pledge to strive to close this gap,” Moriarty explained. “The goal is to get fully funded.” Moriarty talked about the new slogan of the UWSCC, which communicates a simple message: one community, one contribution, and one commitment. The commitment, simply, is to help others. While southern Chester County has a comparatively strong economy, many thousands of local families still struggle to meet their basic needs. Nearly 20 percent of the county households earned less than the self-sufficiency standard for Pennsylvania. That standard measures how much income a family of a certain composition in a given place must earn to meet the basic needs. Chester County is a very desirable place to live, but it is also an expensive place to live, and salaries may not keep pace with the costs. The funds contributed to the UWSCC overwhelmingly stay in the service area between Nottingham and Chadds Ford. The funding is dispersed to agencies in the community that


United Way of Southern Chester County provide a variety of services, including emergency shelter, food for a struggling family, and transportation to a doctor. The UWSCC does everything it can to ensure that the funding is available to help the agencies provide support for local residents who need it. An anonymous donor offered $100,000 in matching funds if the UWSCC was able to increase the number of leadership donors—people who donate at a level of $1,000 or higher. Over the course of the last two campaigns, UWSCC was able to reach the $100,000 plateau in contributions from new leadership donors, making the most of the matching funds that were made available. The UWSCC is always looking for ways to boost the number of donors who give to the campaign. The number of donors increased from 1,418 last year to 1,723 and counting for the current campaign. Freeman noted that gifts have a wide range, and any amount really helps. The annual campaign is a way for people to work together to help strengthen the local community. Moriarty explained, “We obviously can’t do anything without our community partners, and would not be here without the many generous donors who care so much about their community and those in need. Together, we can all help address the growing needs in our community.”

26 Non-Profit Agencies’ Programs being funded

Amount

9 programs dealing with Crisis Intervention

$387,820

9 programs dealing with Transitioning to Independence through Education

$261,420

8 programs dealing with Promoting Stability & Sustainability

$190,760

Total Allocations for 2018-2019

$840,000

Unmet Needs Fund (seed money for delivery of new services) $40,000 Direct Designations from UWSCC Donors

$16,051

UWSCC In-House Programs

$122,459

(I&R, Mentoring Agencies, Voluntererism, Public Workshiops)

Total Community Investment for 2018-2019

$1,018,510

Anyone who would like to contribute to the campaign can do so by sending the donation to the United Way of Southern Chester County, 106 West State St. Kennett Square, Pa. 19348 or by making the donation online at www.Unitedwayscc.org, or by calling 610-444-4357. To contact Staff Writer Steven Hoffman, email editor@chestercounty.com.

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Kennett Square Life Q&A|

Q&A

with Doug Doerfler

Doug Doerfler is in the middle of his term as the president of the Southern Chester County Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Directors. Kennett Square Life caught up with Doerfler to talk about the chamber’s efforts to support a very diverse business community, as well as the organization’s goals for 2018. Doerfler also serves the community as a member of Kennett Square Borough Council, and we talk to him about some of the borough’s accomplishments in recent years. We also discover what the affable Kennett Square resident has in common with Shakespeare and John Oliver. Q: You’re the chair the Southern Chester County Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors in 2018. How did you first get involved with the chamber? A: I was fortunate to be asked to represent Genesis HealthCare on the Chamber Board of Directors in 2014. Up to that point, most of my community involvement was participation on governmental boards and commissions, so it was a great opportunity to represent one of the largest employers in the area with supporting the business community. Upon joining the chamber Board, I served on the Community and Governmental Relations Committee, having chaired it in 2017 prior to moving into my Board Chair role. What are some of the goals for the Southern Chester County Chamber of Commerce this year? There is one that I’m very excited to share, and that is our updated website, www.scccc.com. As we move through 2018, our objectives will be to build on the successes from 2017 and remain relatively simple and focused: 1. We are going to grow our Chamber membership, by both retaining current members and welcoming new members. Each board member has committed to share responsibility in meeting this goal by reaching out to new members, renewing members, and potential members, creating touchpoints that will strengthen relationship-building and create opportunities for valuedriven growth. 2. We will continue to build on being a membercentric organization: We incorporated a member-centric approach more than a year ago at the Chamber’s annual retreat, and have continued to shift our thinking to listen

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Kennett Square Life | Summer/Fall 2018 | www.chestercounty.com

Doug Doerfler is the president of the Southern Chester County Chamber of Commerce board as well as a member of Kennett Square Borough Council.

more, ask more questions, and anticipate the needs of our members. 3. And we are going to continue to enhance our image, visibility and presence by proactively communicating what sets the Southern Chester County Chamber apart. Specifically, we are going to utilize our new website to drive our reach to our membership, our community and the public. What are some of the benefits of belonging to the chamber? As the leading member business organization in the region, we provide value to our members in many ways— advocacy, networking, education and building a stronger community, to name a few. The Southern Chester County Chamber of Commerce proudly supports its members when it says “Your Success Is Our Business.” Membership brings credibility to your business. It increases your visibility in the community, creates networking opportunities, gains a voice in government, and helps members make quality business contacts and acquire customer/client referrals. You can follow Chamber news through business newsletters, gain exposure through events and programs, take advantage of our promotional and PR opportunities geared toward your success, and you have access to member-to-member services and discounts. Connect with us and we’ll help you reach your goals. Upcoming events include the Scholarship Golf Tournament and Dinner on Monday Aug. 6 at the Kennett Square Golf and Country Club; Women in Business Breakfast and quarterly “WIB Gives Back” Community Service on Wednesday, Sept. 5. The location of this event will be announced.


You also serve on Kennett Square Borough Council. What are some of the accomplishments that the town has made while you’ve been on borough council, and what are some of the objectives that borough council will be working on in the near future? Serving the people of Kennett Square has been very fulfilling for me for the 2 ½ years I have been on council. We have an exceptional borough manager and staff that help Kennett operate smoothly and efficiently. I think the current council has done a great job keeping the community informed of goings-on as well as actively soliciting ideas and feedback from residents to help us make decisions that are more informed. One of the most important decisions we made was the selection of a new Chief of Police following the retirement of Chief Ed Zunino. After an extensive search that garnered applicants from across the country and included numerous rounds of interviews, we felt the best decision was to promote from within and we chose Bill Holdsworth to lead the force. We couldn’t be happier with our decision. We participated in an economic development study with Kennett Township and various stakeholders, the Cannery Row project has helped

continue the development in the southwest section of the Borough, The creation of the Advisory Commission of Latino Affairs has supported the Latino voice in town, and we are looking forward to a beautiful new Library on State Street. I think one of the priorities for this council in the near future will be to maintain a good working relationship with our friends at Kennett Township and work together to implement the priority actions identified in the economic development study. We have hired an economic development director, and we must keep our focus on smart development not just by increasing the tax base, but also by providing affordable housing, creating jobs in town, and looking for ways to maintain a positive mix of development that represents our very diverse community. What are some of your favorite spots in Kennett Square? Where to start? Depending on the time of day and what I’m in the mood for, I practically never have to leave town to have an enjoyable experience! Each restaurant in town has its merits, and sitting outside at LaVerona or Victory in the summer is always a great time where I get to meet Continued on Page 26

www.chestercounty.com | Summer/Fall 2018 | Kennett Square Life

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Doug Doerfler Continued from Page 25

so many friends and borough residents. The Market at Liberty Place has such a variety of offerings so it is a great place to go when I don’t want to cook or I’m indecisive. The Creamery has been a nice addition to Birch Street and is such a great family gathering spot. I enjoy the outdoor fun at Anson B. Nixon Park, and the summer concert series is definitely a favorite. I have to tell you though, on Friday nights during the fall we love to sit on our patio and listen to Leon Spencer announce the home football games at Kennett High School. Just sit outside, listen, and take in small town America. If you could invite any three guests, living or dead, to a dinner party, who would it be? That’s a much different question than it was 20 years ago! The internet and social media enable me to know so much more about and hear from potential living guests, as we can practically invite them over any time

26

Kennett Square Life | Summer/Fall 2018 | www.chestercounty.com

we want (or be continually reminded why we DON’T want them to be our guests). That being said, I would really like to hang out with John Oliver from HBO’s “Last Week Tonight” so one of my guests is still alive. I’m sure his name is chosen a lot for this question, but I would definitely enjoyeth a dinner with Shakespeare. A little piece of trivia: Coincidentally, John Oliver, Shakespeare and I all have the same birthday, so that would be a great icebreaker. My sentimental pick—and I would jump at the chance—is to have a dinner conversation with my brother Andy, who passed away from leukemia in 1984. I would love to hear his voice again and reminisce about the 11 years we shared together. What food is always in your refrigerator? I am a condiment junkie, so name a sauce, spread, dip, dressing, marinade or any other flavoring accessory and it’s in there.


Kennett Square Life Arts|

Walking in the f of the Wyeths ‘I Dream About This World’ puts family’s artwork into music By John Chambless Staff Writer

T

he same way that Andrew Wyeth used a thin line of watercolor on stark, white paper to evoke a tree branch, Catherine Marie Charlton places perfectly spaced notes in a composition to draw us into Wyeth’s world. Charlton’s “I Dream About This World: The Wyeth Album,” which was released by the acclaimed pianist last July, is an airy, richly nuanced musical exploration of the creative process. Deftly blending classical music with subtle notes of jazz and delicate improvisation, the 11 tracks on the album are wrapped in a book that delves into the Wyeth family, Charlton’s eloquent musings, and her dazzling photographs, which were taken during her many walks through the Brandywine Valley, where Andrew Wyeth drew his own inspiration. Sitting at her kitchen table for an interview, Charlton recalled how she first encountered works by Andrew and N.C. Wyeth after moving to the Brandywine Valley from Virginia after college. She came here for a job at a credit card company in Wilmington, but during concerts she gave at the Wilmington Institute Library, she got to see N.C. Wyeth’s paintings for “Treasure Island” displayed on the library’s walls. Visiting the Brandywine River Museum, she saw the breadth and depth of the family’s art, particularly that of Andrew Wyeth. “You can’t help but see them around,” she said, “both originals and prints, everywhere. I did not know a lot about Andrew Wyeth, but I had started seeing his paintings at the Brandywine River Museum of Art. One of the things that started this project is that I coincidentally had a series of daytime concerts at the

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Kennett Square Life | Summer/Fall 2018 | www.chestercounty.com


footsteps Charlton says of the CD project, ‘I really feel like I’ve created lasting art here.’

museum at the same time I was looking for a topic for my next album.” She toured the N.C. Wyeth home and studio in Chadds Ford, “and that’s when I made the connection that I should try to find out more about the Wyeths, because it would be a good topic for me.” After seeing “Memory and Magic,” a major exhibition focusing on the Wyeths at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Charlton was hooked. “That was probably my first in-depth introduction to Andrew Wyeth,” she said. “I really connected with the paintings. I remember being really impacted by that exhibit. When I started this project, I thought it was going to be in response to specific paintings. I had no idea what journey I was setting out on. I thought it was going to be a one-year project, and it ended up being four years. It ended up being more about the creative process – and not just

Andrew Wyeth, but the whole philosophy of the family. The more I delved in, the more I found parallels between the way I approach my music and the way he approached his paintings.” Andrew Wyeth passed away in 2009, so Charlton never met the artist. His sister, Ann Wyeth McCoy, who passed away in 2005, was a composer whose works gained acclaim during her lifetime. Charlton performs one of McCoy’s original compositions on the new album. Continued on Page 30 www.chestercounty.com | Summer/Fall 2018 | Kennett Square Life

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Catherine Marie Charlton Continued from Page 29

“My biggest sources were all the interviews by Richard Meryman,” she said of the Wyeth biographer. “I heard him at the Bradywine when he came to speak about the last book he wrote on Andrew. That was my first introduction to the words of Andrew Wyeth. What struck me was how Andrew Wyeth was able to express the creative process so succinctly, eloquently and beautifully,” Charlton said. After talking to Meryman, Ann’s daughters Anna B. McCoy and Robin McCoy, and the staff at the Brandywine River Museum, Charlton was building a mountain of information, but realized that her research was long on facts and short on heart. So she decided to begin a series of “Wyeth Walks” around the woods and fields that both N.C. and Andrew Wyeth had explored thousands of times. “I would find these quotes from both of them, and they both had ways of describing creativity so succinctly,” she said. “I was looking to experience the Brandywine Continued on Page 32

Photo by Catherine Marie Charlton

Wyeth Walk 443: Nov. 26, 2017. Temperature 54 degrees.

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Catherine Marie Charlton Continued from Page 30

Valley and the woods the way they had. There’s a sort of spiritual essence to the land. That became, for me, the way of looking at the world. I take these walks without expectations of what I’m going to find.� Charlton documents each walk by taking photos – eventually more than 9,000 of them – and posting just one image from each walk to summarize the experience. Walking through the landscape again and again brought her into the same creative space that inspired the Wyeths for decades. She traveled to Maine, where the Wyeth family spent the other half of their lives, and walked the rugged coastline. Deeply immersed in nature, she sought to distill the experiences into music that is as soft and sparing as one of Wyeth’s landscapes. Her piano playing is augmented by contributions from cellist David Darling, guitarist Carl Weingarten and others, as well as nature sounds originally recorded by Charlton and then enhanced by producer and

Photo by Catherine Marie Charlton

Wyeth Walk 444: Dec. 18, 2017.

Continued on Page 34

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Catherine Marie Charlton Continued from Page 32

chief engineer Phil Nicolo, who Charlton called “my equal partner in this project.” For his part, Nicolo “said this is one of the proudest projects of his career,” Charlton said. The Wyeth CD is the first full-length release on Nicolo’s own Phil’s Records label. The immersive musical landscape comfortably spans new age and classical genres, and the compositions echo themes and works by the Wyeths, whether listeners notice them or not. The extensive liner notes, essays and illustrations in the book that holds the CD is the kind of deluxe package that usually accompanies best-selling rock bands. “I had so many intricate stories about the inspiration behind every piece,” Charlton said. “I wanted to get the stories down, and at some point I decided that I wanted a visual to go with each song.” Working with journalist Catherine Quillman, who had interviewed Andrew Wyeth several times, Charlton honed insightful stories about each track, pairing them with a few paintings by Andrew and N.C., and her own

Photo by Catherine Marie Charlton

The coastline of Maine, as captured by Charlton as part of her Wyeth project.

Continued on Page 36

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Catherine Marie Charlton Continued from Page 34

photographs. “We started talking about this package,” she said. “We decided that we needed it to be a gift item for museum gift shops. It needed to be a book, not just a CD, because CDs are a dying breed, and more and more people don’t even have CD players.” The album is featured at the Brandywine River Museum, as well as the Seattle Art Museum, and through Amazon. The four-year process, Charlton said, “has changed my creative process,” particularly her photography skills. “I always had a camera with me on hikes, but I never delved into the photography in this way. This is brand new, directly as a result of this project. On my new website, I’m going to actually call myself a photographer,” she said, smiling. “As it evolved, I became a visual artist, because I did a lot of back-end digital manipulation of the photographs. That became something that I really enjoy doing.” Since the CD was released, critical and public acclaim has been pouring in. Charlton cited Amy Morey, the director of the Wyeth Study Center in Maine, “who said what was so refreshing about this project is that it’s about my

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Kennett Square Life | Summer/Fall 2018 | www.chestercounty.com

own art. It was inspired by Andrew Wyeth, but the result is my own voice. That was what they really appreciated. It’s important for them to see that his legacy is expanding and influencing the next generation in an impactful way, and not just an imitative way.” The Andrew Wyeth Estate also granted permission for some of the artist’s paintings to be used in the CD booklet, and at Charlton’s lectures and concerts. “I know that permission is not given lightly,” she said. “During his lifetime, he said that he never wanted his art attached to someone else’s art. That’s why I don’t have a Wyeth painting on the cover of the CD, for example. He wanted other people to have their own art, and not to be riding on his coattails. I was always respectful, and I wanted to make sure I was respecting the legacy. “I really feel like I’ve created lasting art here,” Charlton said. “It’s changed my entire life, not just my creative process. It’s really reinforced the way I parent as well.” Charlton’s two children were toddlers when the Wyeth Continued on Page 38


Photo by Joe del Tufo

Catherine Marie Charlton, at the Brandywine River Museum of Art’s N.C. Wyeth property.

www.chestercounty.com | Summer/Fall 2018 | Kennett Square Life

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Catherine Marie Charlton Continued from Page 36

project started, and now they are in elementary school. She is inspired by the way that N.C. Wyeth raised his remarkable family, getting them out into nature, playing classical music for them in the evenings, putting on plays at home, and encouraging them to read and paint and write on a daily basis. During the process of producing the Wyeth project, Charlton worked on three other CDs, including her “Maiden’s Voyage” solo release in 2015. The past few years have been chaotic personally and momentous in her professional life, but Charlton is looking ahead to showcasing “I Dream About This World” in a new surround-sound version produced by Nicolo that may be released on a DVD, incorporating her own photos and concert footage. She also wants to perform the piece in concert with full visual accompaniment. “The surround sound is amazing, and it’s an incredibly immersive experience,” she said. “I’m really looking forward to showcasing it.” For more information, visit www.catherinemariecharlton. com. To contact Staff Writer John Chambless, email jchambless@ chestercounty.com.

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Photos by Catherine Marie Charlton

During her hundreds of ‘Wyeth Walks,’ Charlton took photos and selected one image to represent each experience.


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Kennett Square Arts|

Life is a satisfying arrangement Pianist Wayne Carr shares his love of piano with audiences and students By Natalie Smith Staff writer

F

All photos by Natalie Smith

Wayne Carr stands beneath the metal arch he had constructed for the front of his Kennett Square home. 40

Kennett Square Life | Summer/Fall 2018 | www.chestercounty.com

or Wayne Carr, the thousands of people connections he’s made over the years can be traced back to one starting point: the piano. Whether as performer, arranger, accompanist or instructor, the Kennett Square man has been sharing with others his lifelong love of the instrument, and the beauty he can charm from it with his inimitable panache. Even before meeting Carr, it’s easy to pick out his home on the block. A cheery white house with blue accents, the small but immaculate yard boasts lush grass, and is decorated with small fountains and wellchosen flowers in the ground and in hanging baskets. But what really sets the home apart are the personal touches. A custom metal archway at the top of the three steps leading from the walkway to the house is graced by musical notes; the welcome mat is decorated with a stylized piano keyboard; and the made-to-order mounted mailbox is in the shape of a grand piano, its lid lowering to accept delivered mail. And in case there’s still any question that it’s Carr’s home, mounted on the bricks that comprise the chimney is a custom-made, 10-foot treble clef. The musical symbol also can light up, but its influence on a nearby computer-controlled traffic signal when lit convinced Carr to mostly keep it off. In addition to the five pianos and one organ he has in the home, there are many mementos -- photos, awards and music-related knick-knacks – all rounding out the evidence of a well-lived life. “There’s no doubt when you walk in my house that a musician lives here,” Carr said with a laugh.


His playing style, while certainly his own, bears the influences of the many artists with whom he was lucky enough to come in contact. One of the earliest was Liberace. The pianist, whose flourishes and showmanship became his signature style during a career that spanned more than 40 years, caught a young Wayne Carr’s attention in the 1950s. “When I was 3 1/2 or 4 years old, I remember I would sit in my high chair and my mother and I would watch Liberace on television,” Carr said. “I would watch this man playing the piano and smiling, and there would be wonderful music. I thought, ‘I kind of like that.’” That impression set Carr on his life’s path. It was during a family visit to his aunt’s house when they sat Carr in front of her piano, so he could reach the keys. “And I remember for the next hour and a half, I was just enamored by this,” he said. “My aunt said to my mom, ‘Joyce, you need to come over and look at this. You need to get him lessons.’ When I was 6, my mom said to my dad, ‘We’re getting him a piano Wayne Carr plays a piano in his Kennett Square home. for Christmas.’” Carr’s father was skeptical, and suspected his son would quickly lose interest, but his mother insisted. Mom was right. “I had to practice. I didn’t mind practice. When I was 7, 8, 9 years old, I’d practice two, two and a half hours a day. Sure, I’d watch TV, or go out and play stickball. But [when practicing], I could be in my own little world. I played hours and hours and hours. It took me through my first year of college.” His second experience got Carr even closer to the famed Liberace, after participating in a competition he sponsored. When Carr was 16, he entered the contest in which participants had to play and demonstrate their skills as pianists. Carr came in first place. He got to go backstage after one of the performer’s shows at the Miami Beach Convention Hall, where he met Liberace. “I’ll never forget it. He asked me if I wanted to play a duet,” Carr said. Liberace also taught Carr several of his piano techniques. “He was working with young people at the time and he asked me if I wanted to participate. But my parents told me, ‘No, you’re going to school.’” While disappointed, Carr saw the wisdom of their words. And he kept playing piano. But not just the expected recitals. As a student at Miramar High, he agreed to play just about any time he was asked. He acted as accompanist for school choirs, church services and even got a weekend gig playing at a popular ice cream joint. Carr played so much that he earned the nicknames of “88 Keys,” and “Flying Fingers.” The moniker “Mr. Piano” has stuck with him to this day, and his vanity license plate is the proof. “The first time I got paid was at Jaxon’s Ice Cream Parlour in Dania In 1987, Wayne Carr won first place in Beach,” he said. “They had a honky-tonk piano. I played there for competition for a second time.

a Liberace

Continued on Page 42

www.chestercounty.com | Summer/Fall 2018 | Kennett Square Life

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Wayne Carr Continued from Page 41

two years. Everybody else was out on the weekend. But I’d make 160 bucks, which was a lot in the 1960s.” What did he do with his cash, despite his father’s advice that he save? Carr laughed. “I went out to eat, bought clothes and a car. My first car was a Volkswagen, which I loved. Then I bought a Mustang.” Carr recalled fondly his first “real concert” was part of an evening of music presented by the Performing Arts Society of Greater Miami Beach. The recital was at the then-Playboy Plaza Hotel in Miami. “I got to be the showcased pianist,” he said. “There were 2,100 people in the audience. I played Chopin’s ‘Polonaise.’” He also started taking on students, and continues to this day. “I had maybe 12 or 15 students before I went away to school. I really enjoyed it,” he said. “I thought, ‘How am I going to explain the piano to somebody?’ because I had no formal training. But I loved it so much, I would only end up with students who really wanted to do it. What I was actually doing was tailor-making the lesson to each student.” Carr’s later students weren’t all kids and teens. “I taught a

lot of professional people over the years,” he said. “I’ve found that people just want to play the piano. I love it so much that I know what you really want. You want to learn how to do something, but you need to practice.” In addition to teaching, Carr is an in-demand performer, but often plays where his fancy strikes. A stroll to a nearby Wayne Carr’s photo from 1968 after senior center led Carr winning a piano competition sponsored to offer to play some by famed musician Liberace. afternoons. If there is a piano, chances are he might sit down and play a few tunes. While in college, Carr found that he also had a skill for musical arrangement. His insatiable curiosity for how other musicians pulled together a song led him to seek Continued on Page 44

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Wayne Carr Continued from Page 42

out popular pianists such as Ferrante and Teicher, and Roger Williams, and be rewarded with warm friendships. “I would watch them,” he said of the well-known performers, “and listen to them and just soak it in. I didn’t have an orchestra, so I had to be the orchestra. All my arrangements are very flourished. They have a lot of things to them. I can make them sound trumpet-y, flute-y ... I can make it sound very orchestral.” A final near-encounter with Liberace in 1987

This 10-foot treble clef adorns the side of Wayne Carr’s home.

Wayne Carr is joined on his backyard piano deck by his Old English sheepdog, Sir Winston.

was after he again placed first in the pianist’s competition. “He was going to take first-, second- and third-place winners along with him to perform in Vegas,” Carr said. Unfortunately, Liberace’s ill health and eventual death prevented it. When a piece of music intrigues Carr, he does his best to track down how it was done. He even received the original sheet music from the Alfred Hitchcock film, The Man Who Knew Too Much, by famed composer Bernard Herrmann, which he copied and returned to the estate. Continued on Page 46

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Wayne Carr Continued from Page 44

Carr’s musical background ties in closely with his religious beliefs. When he moved to Pennsylvania 35 years ago, it was to take a job with the Glen Mills-based Triumphant Communications Network, an evangelical Christian organization which presented spiritual productions in the U.S. and beyond. He’s also recorded four albums; primarily praise songs, but with the Carr spin. “I was classically trained, of course. So whether the music is praise or popular, I incorporate classical music through both,” he said. “My signature piece, ‘My Life Is In You, Lord,’ is a praise song. But when you hear it … I actually construct or arrange the piece of music. Put the rhythm and harmonies to it. All the right hand and flourishes. So there’s a little bit of Roger Williams, a little bit of Liberace, a little bit of Ferrante and Teicher.” Carr says he’s very appreciative of the friendships and lessons learned. “I’m a musician and a born-again Christian,” he said. “I’m thankful and grateful to God for everything I have, because he’s allowed me to have it, and I recognize it. But there have been people in my life who have added and

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The jacket of a holiday tuxedo special made for Wayne Carr. The suit has about 14,000 Swarovski decorative crystals. He has another one in red.

given. And I’ve taken and given.” He’s developed a personal philosophy that he says perfectly sums up his outlook. “Regret will never change your past. Anxiety will never change your future. But gratitude will always change your present,” he said. Natalie Smith may be contacted at DoubleSMedia@ rocketmail.com.


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Kennett Square People|

Ferron works with individual clients to create one-of-a-kind designs. 48

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Who says you can’t go home again? For David Ferron, returning to Chester County after a decade in the New York City fashion industry was like opening an old door again, and that’s just what he did, with a new fashion design studio in Unionville


All photos by Jie Deng By Richard L. Gaw Staff Writer

T

The showroom features some of Ferron’s dress designs.

David Ferron is back in the Saddle again

o David Ferron, who returned to Chester County to open David Ferron Unionville Saddle this past spring after nearly a decade in the New York fashion industry, the love story that connects a woman to a garment she adores should be a personal one. Too often, however, the process of finding that connection takes women through the shopper’s jungle of highend department stores, thrusting them into the temporary maze of strewnabout fabrics, fast-talking salespeople, the hollow realization that everything available on the racks have been tailored to fit the torso of a 12-year-old girl, the drowning in the swirl of the concept-driven design, and beyond that, being told the seven ugly words that no woman ever wants to hear. We don’t have it in your size. Juxtaposed against this marketplace hurricane, David Ferron Unionville Saddle is the calming eye. “Women are frustrated by how they are being treated,” Ferron said recently from his studio in the heart of Unionville. “There’s an entire demographic of women who feel ignored when they visit a store. It’s off-the-rack and it doesn’t address a woman’s fit issues and proportions. “My concept of designing custom clothing for women – as well as madeto-measure tailored shirts for men – is inspired by people and their stories. I am creating a one-on-one, warm experience for people. It’s hands-on, and it’s about spending time getting to know my clients. They’re also going to know that what we make just for them Continued on Page 50

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David Ferron Continued from Page 49

is going to fit them, and that it will be made specifically for what they, the client, wants.” To fully engage the arc of life and work experience that led Ferron to open David Ferron Unionville Saddle is to begin here, in Chester County, where he was born 29 years ago. The gift that he has as a dressmaker and clothing designer was likely ignited by a boyhood spent watching his parents work; his father Dave is a carpenter and his mother Ann, an artist, is also an art teacher at Patton Middle School. From an early age, the young Ferron’s artistic portfolio grew, with a focus on watercolors and oil paintings, but by the time he entered Unionville High School, the paintings were joined by the portraits he was making of fashion models in art classes. Somewhere between the early sketches and the full-fledged work that would take him to one of the most prestigious schools of fashion design in the world, Ferron played football. Joining his brother, Chris, Ferron was a two-way fullback and middle linebacker for head coach Pat Clark’s Indian teams of the mid-2000s. In his junior year,

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Ferron’s sketchbooks are a never-ending source of design concepts. Courtesy of David Ferron.


he chipped the back quarter of a bone in his shoulder, and later had surgery that required the insertion of two screws into his shoulder. “They gave me the ball after months of muscle rehab, because they wanted four yards on the ground, and I gave it to them,” Ferron said. “By the end of the game, I was in so much pain that when I got back home that night, I went upstairs in my parents’ house and just started crying. The next week the MRI came back, and it revealed a bone fracture, so all of the rehabbing had nothing to do at all with getting me healthy again.” Ferron rehabbed his shoulder the summer before his senior year, but during a two-a-day practice before the season, he broke his arm during a tackling drill. The thought of sitting on the sidelines in a cast and not being able to participate was torturous for Ferron. His parents and coaches intervened, and encouraged him to give up football and instead, concentrate on developing his talents as an artist. Ferron agreed that it was the right decision. So while his former teammates were hitting tackling dummies and doing endless drills and wind sprints, Ferron and his friend Amelia met at her home, where one of his skills met what would become his life’s direction. “We began to drape clothes on an old dress form using cheap fabric. A lot of the designs we were making weren’t really any good, but it showed me how to work with material and fabric around the body,” he said. “Those experiences inspired me to consider to look into schools that offered fashion design.” Ferron, who graduated from Unionville High School in 2007, was accepted at all of the finest fashion and design schools in the nation – the Rhode Island School of Design, The Art Institute of Boston and Savannah College of Art & Design, among them – but ultimately, he chose to attend Parsons the New School of Art and Design, in New York City. “I didn’t go into design because I liked to shop for clothes,” he said. “I went into design because I liked to make things, and it really worked in my favor, because whatever the class at Parsons was, I took it very seriously and focused on the craft of the class I was taking. “I wanted to be Number One the entire time. It goes back to having a competitive side through athletics. I wanted to get ‘As’ at a school where they only gave out ‘Cs.’”

Continued on Page 51

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David Ferron Continued from Page 51

At Parsons, Ferron became obsessed with the meticulous nature of designing clothes that were both experimental and wearable. In between classes, he absorbed everything he could about the industry; he worked for fashion designers; created hand sketches for new styles; organized collections; and attended fabric trade shows. During a summer internship, Ferron spent most of his time at a copy machine, duplicating images that would be sent to designers who were in need of fresh ideas. As he watched the copies slide out from the machine, Ferron came to the realization that the entire direction of the fashion industry was modeled on what came before it – making copies from copies. Ferron called his senior thesis at Parsons “Copy Me,” in a creative nod to his summer internship experience. “Its concept was based on asking what happens if the copier begins to run out of ink, or what colors would come out if you put a garment or a person in the machine,” Ferron said. His teachers encouraged him to keep pushing himself on “Copy Me.” He went through three rounds of judging, and on the last round, Ferron sat across some of the largest names in the New York fashion industry – buyers, editors, an entire panel of experts – who closely examined his project. At the school’s end-of-the-year gala at Chelsea Piers in New York City in 2011, Ferron was selected as Parsons’ Womenswear Designer of the Year “I sat between two of my professors, and along side some of my best friends,” Ferron said. “It was a beauty queen moment, and my professor and best friends told me to stop crying and get up to the podium. It was live streamed so my family was watching from home.” It led to a seven-year career in the New York City fashion industry, which included a position as assistant designer at Bibhu Mohapatra, and nearly three years as a design assistant with Thomas Maier, a luxury clothing designer, who is the creative director at Bottega Veneta in Italy. “What I learned from Thomas Maier is that the clothes should speak for themselves,” Ferron said. “There is so much in the idea of the celebrity fashion designer, and how people are buying clothes based on celebrity endorsement, and that was the exact opposite of Mr. Maier. He taught me that it doesn’t necessarily need to be done that way.” Continued on Page 54

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Ferron’s studio is located in the heart of Unionville.


David Ferron Continued from Page 52

Ferron and his clients go through several stages in the creation of his designs.

During Christmas vacation last year, Ferron and his mother drove through Unionville to admire the renovation work that Ferron’s father had done to the interior of a building. The place, he noticed, was for rent, and within a month, Ferron had left New York City and come back home, with an idea to open his own dressmaking and tailoring business in the abandoned building – and working from one single principle. “One of the ideas I had when I started this concept is that the body is not the problem – it’s the clothes,” he said. “Clothes can be made and tailored, but bodies are bodies. People are so used to clothes not fitting them well, that they assume that they’re the problem. I tell my clients, ‘We are going to fit this garment three times before we make it.’ It allows us to address all of these issues every step of the way, and at each step, it gets better. “It’s establishing that trust in believing that we’re going to make something beautiful, together, in a completely different type of experience.” For Ferron, the steps to a finished product begin with consultation with the client and early sketches. They advance to a selection of the Continued on Page 56

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David Ferron Continued from Page 54

fabric, then to the selection of drape, pattern and fitting and finally, the creation of the final garment. “I like to think that I am bringing a level of craftsmanship and attention to detail that’s not necessarily being seen in this area – silhouettes and cuts that you can’t find anywhere else. If I had this exact shop in Brooklyn, it wouldn’t work, because the market is over saturated. But here, it’s a different concept.” Ferron accepts photographs as a starting point, but he prefers to work from the energy of ideas that is shared between client and designer. “My clients often ask for things they’ve already seen, and then I steer them in another direction,” he said. “I have clients that have brought in photographs, and I say, ‘We can do something much better than that.’ It doesn’t make sense for me to work on a custom piece if I know the client can just buy what’s in the photograph. I like to create clothing that is one of a kind.” Recently, a woman worked with Ferron to create a personalized top and pants for her to wear to the upcoming wedding of her grandson. “Before her first fitting, she told me that she could not sleep the night before,” Ferron said. “I told her, ‘Me, too. ‘ I was a wreck. If I miscalculate, then it’s on me. Luckily, the first fitting went well, and each time we fit, it got better and better, and when she walked out with the finished pieces, she was over the moon. “It comes down to working through the process with someone, and it’s allowing me to tell that grandmother that I want to make something cool for her. It has allowed me to tell her, ‘You may be the grandmother of the groom, but I want to make you the coolest woman in the room.’” David Ferron Unionville Saddle is located at 1712 W. Doe Road, Kennett Square, Pa. To learn more about David Ferron, visit www. davidferron.com, email dcferron@davidferron. com, or call 610-470-1254. To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, email rgaw@chestercounty.com.


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Kennett Square Photo Essay| Image is everything, especially when it comes to promoting you and your business with a professionally-done portrait. Recently, Kennett Square Life sent photographer Jie Deng and style consultant Suzie Gaffney to meet with four locals, who all smiled for the camera

Say ‘Cheese!’ 58

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By Suzie Gaffney Photos by Jie Deng I’m not comfortable having my photo taken, and I inevitably make it much worse by appearing stiff or wearing a fake smile. This presents a problem for me, because I am the face of my business, so putting my photo “out there” is part of my branding and my advertising. Whether we like it or not, having a good photo of ourselves is becoming an essential part of our increasingly visual society, but while it creates a first visual impression who hasn’t stressed over choosing their profile picture? We have all heard the saying that a picture is worth a thousand words, so what do you want your picture to say? In addition, the style, color and cut of your clothing can speak volumes about your personality, so it’s important to take control of that first impression, and make sure it’s in line with your business or personal goals. This is where the right photographer makes all the difference. When I met Jie Deng to shoot my professional profile photos, I immediately felt comfortable. She is calm, kind and makes you feel at ease when she is looking at you through her camera lens. She knows exactly how to position your body from the angle of your foot to the tilt of your chin. Recently, I worked with Jie on selecting and styling four Kennett Square residents who were looking to spruce up not only their style but their social media portfolios. Prior to each photo session I spoke with each person and asked them to tell me what they want their photos to say about them. As you will see, each of Jie’s photographs in this essay help illuminate four amazing stories.

About the author Suzie Gaffney is a Chester County-based wardrobe consultant, who works with male and female clients in the county and around the United States to upgrade their style, their wardrobe and their self-confidence. She is also the author of an amusing and inspiring fashion blog, where she writes about a variety of topics related to image, beauty and the challenge of being everything to all people, including ourselves. To learn more about Suzie and to read her blog, visit www.suziegaffney.com.

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Say ‘Cheese!’ Continued from Page 59

Estelle Tracy Estelle, a local author and born and raised in France, is getting ready to publish the third edition of her book, and plans on using these photos you see on these pages for her book jacket as well as for her profile picture on Instagram and her personal Facebook page. Prior to her shoot with Jie, I asked Estelle for three words to describe her personality and three words to describe her style. For her personality she said Creative, Dynamic and Enthusiastic. In describing her style she said No-Nonsense, UniformLike and Classic. Right away I noticed how opposite these descriptions were, but, much like her website, “Le Hamburger and Le Croissant,” I was confident there was a way to perk up her everyday style just a bit to be more in line with her personality. Given that Estelle’s wardrobe typically gravitates toward blacks and neutrals, I wanted to bring in some color without it overwhelming her outfit or the photograph. This moto-styled jacket was the perfect shade of green to compliment her eyes and works well with her black top and jeans. Much like Estelle, the jacket is a classic in its’ cut and style, but creatively different in its’ color and suede-like texture. 60

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Kennett Square author Estelle Tracy is looking for a new profile photo that will be used on her upcoming social media pages.


Lauren Intinarelli Lauren Intinarelli is a client of mine who contacted me last year after seeing my profile in Jie’s ongoing photography project, “People of Kennett Square.” Little did we know just how full circle things would come when we chose Jie to shoot some updated profile pictures for Lauren. Lauren has a successful career at Kennett Square’s Chatham Financial, which is known for its relaxed and casual employee dress code (Hint: Think jeans and flip flops work for every day attire.) Outside of work, Lauren and her husband have a young daughter, so casual attire works great for family outings and weekends. In addition to work and family, Lauren is heavily involved in volunteering in our local community and is currently the chairperson for the Chester County Food Bank. As she increases her role in her local board and community work, it was our goal to give Lauren a style that is mature and polished yet approachable. Styling her in a suit jacket seemed a bit too serious and forced, so we chose a classically-tailored dress in this gorgeous shade of blue. Keeping her makeup light and understated kept the attention on Lauren herself and gives her the freedom to use her new photographs for professional purposes, as well as on social media.

In addition to her position at Chatham Financial, Lauren Intinarelli is the chairperson of the Chester County Food Bank.

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Say ‘Cheese!’ Continued from Page 61

Kevin Quinlan Kevin Quinlan was born and raised in Kennett Square and now raises his own family here as well. He is a big part of our community, where he coaches both youth baseball and youth ice hockey, and is owner of his family business, Logical Living-Fresh Express, a home delivery service that brings locallyraised produce right to a homeowner’s doorstep. Because Kevin makes all of the deliveries himself each week to hundreds of homes, he’s the face of his company so when helping Kevin choose what to wear for his photo session, we wanted a look that translates to Kevin being a business owner, yet also reflects his friendly and casual personality. Often when Kevin is doing his deliveries, he is in jeans and a t-shirt, a baseball cap and sneakers. For the photo I asked him to wear a shortsleeved collared golf shirt with his logo and a pair of casual lighter colored pants. Brown shoes provide a cleaner look than sneakers for the photo and pants instead of shorts help us achieve a look that works in all seasons. I also asked Kevin to do some photos without the cap because it’s easier to see his face and it looks a bit more professional. The result is a timeless photo that Kevin can use on his website as well as social media, all which help connect him to his business. 62

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Kevin Quinlan is the owner of Logical Living-Fresh Express, and is looking to spruce up his profile for his company’s social media marketing.


Jane Perone Bazzano Jane is retired but may just be busier than she ever was before. Involved in the Kennett Area Senior Center, The Garden Club, as well as Family Promise of Southern Chester County through St. Patrick Church. With Jane’s busy schedule, we ended up discussing her photo styling over the phone. I have many clients who are located in different areas of the country, so phone conversations, face time and texting of photos and links are essential to effectively styling them from afar. When I first spoke with Jane, I asked her to describe her personality, and she said she was Outgoing, Fun Loving and Caring. Immediately, I pictured her wearing a bright color and she said she had recently worn a blue dress to church and had received a ton of compliments on it. Since the purpose of her photos was for local community print work and websites, we decided to dress her close to her personality, which meant it was very important for her to feel comfortable, beautiful and confident in her outfit. We decided to start with the blue dress and then we discussed accessories. She loves scarves and usually would choose a print to go with a solid dress, but in this case I suggested a complimentary bright but solid color. This bright pink color did the trick, as it brightens up the blue just a bit and keeps things simple and focused on Jane’s beautiful smile. Jane Perone Bazzano’s infectious smile and stunning blue dress was accented with a bright pink scarf.

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Kennett Square Business| Architect John Rosecrans of Renewal Dynamics, Inc. specializes in saving neglected buildings of Chester County history and giving them a new purpose. Barn by barn, carriage house by carriage house, he’s taking our rich past and giving it to our future

Photo by Richard L. Gaw

John Rosecrans of Renewal Dynamics, Inc. 64

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In the sp


spirit of Renewal By Richard L. Gaw Staff Writer

M

ost people, when they see that something is broken, consider it obsolete or tired or well beyond its worth. Then they throw it out. If it’s small, they toss it in the trash, but if it’s large, say, the size of a dilapidated barn or a neglected carriage house, they make a call and suddenly, that which stood standing for decades and even centuries has been bulldozed into extinction, in order to make way for something else. Continued on Page 66

Courtesy photos

Rosecrans helped convert a neglected barn on Route 1 in Chadds Ford into a modern space that was once used as a tasting room for the Ten Gallon Hat Winery. www.chestercounty.com | Summer/Fall 2018 | Kennett Square Life

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John Rosecrans Continued from Page 65

Right in the middle of this Age of Expendability, however, architect John Rosecrans has made a career out of not being one of those people. Instead, as the tag line for his three-year-old company reads, he is saving the past for the future. He took a decrepit carriage house in Kennett Square and converted it into a multi-use space. He saw an unused garage in Pennsbury and expanded – and extended – its life. He is currently redesigning an historic home in Chester County that is situated on a seven-acre former working farm. He took an old Victorian home near Chadds Ford on Route 1 – his former property, in fact – and renovated it to the point where it had a new identity. Rosecrans, the president of Renewal Dynamics, Inc. in Kennett Square, is devoted to the restoration and adaptive re-use of historic, unique and forgotten structures throughout Chester County and beyond. Some of the many local projects completed by Renewal Dynamics, Inc. have included the adaptive re-use of a barn along Route 1 in Chadds Ford that became the tasting room for Ten Gallon Hat Winery; the conversion of a barn into office and retail space in the Willowdale Town Center; and the re-purposing of several barns into private residences. “Most of the projects that we work on are structures that people don’t know what to do with, and most are simply looked at as something to tear down,” Rosecrans said. “In our region, we have some very talented architects who Courtesy photos

Rosecrans helped to restore a historic home and its carriage house in Kennett Square.

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can restore historic structures back to what they originally were, but my passion can be found in the structures that no one wants anymore. “I look at these places as becoming anything – retail, restaurants, commercial space, and residences. The space is amazing, and I want to keep that structure in place for future generations to appreciate. I have always asked, ‘Why are you tearing this down when you can do something with it?’” From the time he was old enough to explore, Rosecrans has been in love with structures that no one seems to want anymore. Born and raised in San Diego, he enjoyed visiting closed-down dairy barns, where he would run through the stalls, and with his scout group, he explored abandoned haciendas, whose former glamour had begun to wither and decay. During a short stint living in Alaska, he would join his family on visits to hunting cabins near a military base that were used by enlisted men. “For some reason, I never wanted to visit the finished


hunting cabins,” he said. “I wanted to see the ones that were falling apart. “My love of architecture has always been around those unwanted, forgotten structures. When I was a young boy, I had the Dr. Seuss book that asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, and I would fill it in with “architect.” He took his boyhood interest to Oklahoma State University, where he earned a degree in architecture, and when a lot of his colleagues were beginning their careers in Chicago and New York, Rosecrans came to southeastern Pennsylvania, where he helped create architectural reports on historic structures. On one assignment, he was asked to measure the attic of an old house in Fairmount Park in Philadelphia. He had never been in a structure that old before, and it stirred something inside of him that reminded him of his early fascination with neglected and abandoned structures. In 1988, Rosecrans moved to Chester County. “I have been blessed to be able to be in Chester County, and come across these structures,” said Rosecrans, who also serves as the Chair of the East Marlborough Township Historic Commission and on Continued on Page 68

Courtesy photos

Rosecrans redesigned and repurposed a Unionville barn in the Willowdale Town Center.

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John Rosecrans Continued from Page 67

the Historic Architectural Review Board in Kennett Square. “Some have been honored by the development that’s happened around them, but some have not. I’ve been called in years ago to look at some properties where developers were coming in and unfortunately they weren’t giving the needed space around the barns.” Often, his work to give a barn new life, or help save a crumbling carriage house or warehouse, is an uphill battle, fought against the grain of modern development that has too often buried the past. “If you look around Kennett Square, there have been an amazing amount of structures that have been lost in the name of progress, or because it would cost too much to keep them,” he said. “You’re losing more than you would have spent, simply by keeping these Continued on Page 70

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John Rosecrans Continued from Page 68

structures alive. Maybe George Washington didn’t go there, and maybe [architect] Frank Furness didn’t design it, but these are structures that gave people and towns memories.” The work Rosecrans does to preserve, renovate and repurpose historic and forgotten structures dovetails with his role at Dimensional Dynamics, Architects and Planners, where he has been the president and owner since 1998. Dimensional Dynamics works with the faith community to renovate and design churches throughout the United States by leading them through the processes of planning, designing, and construction of quality, functional facilities to meet their ministry needs and budgets. The work he does for both businesses receives its direction from client input, and thus, every additional stage in the process is impacted by the client’s budget. “When you’re dealing with an existing building, your limitations are already in place,” he said. “ I’ve never had a client who has tons of money tell me, ‘We want you to design something fabulous. It’s always, ‘We’re trying to

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Courtesy art

An example of Rosecrans’ architectural drawings.

make this work within this budget. What do we need to do?’ “I ask my clients to tell me everything they want to have done on this property, because I want to make sure that whatever we do does not interfere with making their dream home or business happen in the future. It is being Continued on Page 72


John Rosecrans Continued from Page 70

able to say to the client that this is not overwhelming. It is achievable, and we don’t have to do it all at once.� Most architects create their projects on a tabula rasa basis – a blank page or computer application that’s waiting to be filled. In contrast, Rosecrans works from the blueprint of history in the attempt to retrofit his vision into what are often structures badly in need of repair. “When you deal with an existing structure, you don’t know what you’re going to encounter,� he said. “We can do documentation, put everything in a computer and begin drawing, but until you start ripping apart and digging, you just don’t know what’s really there. It’s an unknown that sometimes creates additional phases in the restoration process.� Rosecrans can easily point to his own home – a once neglected barn on a large property, located on the outskirts of Kennett Square – as a primary example. When he first came upon the barn in 1993, he saw that every remnant of its former purpose was still evident: decades’ old bails of hay, rusted tools and machinery, and a damp and persistent sense that no matter how large the dreams and vision Rosecrans had for its renovation, it was still a barn.

Courtesy art

A recent project designed by Renewal Dynamics, Inc.

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Kennett Square Life | Summer/Fall 2018 | www.chestercounty.com


In his mind, however, the work began: He broke down the space and began to design an 8,000-square-foot, four-bedroom, two-and-a-half bathroom home with an in-law suite. A week later, his wife Lora walked through the cavernous and musty old space, turned to her husband, and said, “John, this space is amazing.” They purchased the barn later in 1993, and have lived there ever since. Over the years, project by project, the Rosecrans’ have expanded their living space, room by room, square foot by square foot, renovation work that also includes radiant floor heating and new foundations. In his role as an architect, Rosecrans loves getting his hands dirty in discovering the unknown. He revels in the unlevel, in the imperfections that history leaves in its wake. For instance, the living room floor of his home dips slightly, and it’s become a design element that gives the home character. “Lora and I jacked the floor up about three inches, but there was still a dip,” he said. “I put a desk in one area and realized that the desk was sloping, so I thought that if we put the taller knick knacks on the downward side and the shorter knick knacks on the upward side, then visually, the desk will appear to be level. It really does, and that is just so much fun.” Rosecrans may be sightly sentimental toward the preservation and re-purposing of historic and neglected structures, but with it, comes the practicality of seeking methods to make these buildings viable for today’s use. “The biggest joy I get is to see these structures being used by the client for what they had intended them to be used for,” he said. “I get to enjoy seeing them walk through their re-purposed space and tell me, ‘This is more than we anticipated...and it works perfectly.’” Renewal Dynamics, Inc. is located at 237 Kirkbrae Road, Kennett Square, Pa. To learn more about Renewal Dynamics, Inc., visit “renewaldynamics” on Facebook, email john@renewaldynamics. us, or call 610-444-8680. To contact Staff Writer Richard L. Gaw, email rgaw@chestercounty. com.

www.chestercounty.com | Summer/Fall 2018 | Kennett Square Life

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Kennett Square People|

Kennett Square native helps train the Navy’s best pilots at TOPGUN Photo by Senior Chief Mass Communication Specialist Gary Ward

Petty Officer 1st Class Tracey Giger

By Lt. Bridget Mitchell, Navy Office of Community Outreach In Nevada’s high desert is the Navy’s premiere tactical air warfare training center, home to the Naval Aviation Warfighting Development Center and it’s Strike Fighter Tactics Instructor program, known to the world as TOPGUN. A 1988 David Lister High School, England, graduate and Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, native is part of the Navy’s finest aviation fighter training facility in the world. Petty Officer 1st Class Tracey Giger is a logistics specialist working with the Fighter Squadron Composite 13 stationed aboard Naval Air Station Fallon, Nevada. A Navy logistics specialist is responsible for managing inventories of repair parts while also operating the financial systems for the command. “The tragic events on 9/11 inspired me to join the military and I knew I wanted to go to sea,” said Giger. “Joining the Navy has allowed me to see the world and build a career.” TOPGUN began 48 years ago with the determination of nine pilots, the skepticism of the government and almost no budget as history would recall. In the early years it turned the tide of a losing air war in Vietnam, revolutionized military doctrine, inspired a Hollywood blockbuster and attracted and trained the best allied pilots and air crew from all over the world. Giger plays a crucial role in the overall mission that flies over 5,000 adversary sorties per year in support of 74

Kennett Square Life | Summer/Fall 2018 | www.chestercounty.com

the Navy and Marine Corp Active and Reserve fleet and replacement squadrons, carrier air wings and marine aircraft groups including the United States Air Force, Air Force Reserve and Air National guard and Canadian Forces. “Nowhere in the world does the Navy have the ability to train as we do in NAS Fallon,” said NAS Fallon Commanding Officer, Capt. David Halloran. “The Navy specifically chose NAS Fallon as the location for Top Gun and the Naval Special Warfare Tactical Ground Mobility Training Center because of the desert climate, mountainous terrain, and sophisticated ranges available in northern Nevada. Every Carrier Air Wing and Navy Seal Team is required to receive the essential training provided here prior to being deployed in theater.” According to Navy officials, TOPGUN is highly competitive and exposes Navy and Marine Corp pilots to the most demanding training scenarios in fighter aviation lead by some of the most talented pilots in the world. Each pilot is hand-selected for air-to-air and air-to-ground training and subsequently, as a TOPGUN instructor. “My father was a career intel officer in the British army, my grandfather served in World War II, and I have extended family serving in the Merchant Marines,” said Giger explaining that military service was a family tradition. “I’m proud to have been the first female in air operations at the logistical supply group for a naval special warfare group.” Giger also said they are proud to serve at the center of excellence for naval aviation, training and tactics development. The future of U.S. aviation depends on the Navy’s ability to achieve their vision for defeating tomorrow’s air threats with the support of the ground crews and pilots. “I’m so proud to serve the country that has been home for 23 years,” added Giger. “It’s allowed me to provide for my three sons.”


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Kennett Square Life Magazine Summer/Fall 2018 www.chestercounty.com

A Chester County Press Publication P.O. Box 150, Kelton, PA 19348 address corrections not required

Kennett Square Life Summer/Fall 2018  
Kennett Square Life Summer/Fall 2018