Aston Township established 1688
Township Times Volume 6; Issue 10 October 2010
Summer Trash Schedule Twice weekly trash pick-ups ended on Sept. 24.
No Columbus Day Collections
Pack Leader Ed Gane (far right) leads a scout salute during the laying of a wreath at the Aston Township Veterans Memorial Garden, while members of the Sun Valley HS ROTC color guard stand at attention.
Scouts Host Patriot's Day Ceremony For Vets Boy Scout Troops 225/292, Cub Scout Packs 225/77, and Girl Scout Troops 57075/5798 (all from Mt. Hope or St. Joseph's Churches in Aston) held a tribute to the veterans of America's wars at the Memorial Garden at Five Points Intersection on Sept. 11. Members of local American Legion and VFW posts were on hand with township officials and a representative of Congressman Joseph Sestak to honor members of the armed forces. Bugler Kevin Turnbull of the Sun Valley ROTC played taps and bagpiper Kevin Gane played Amazing Grace to punctuate the ceremony. A 9-11 Memorial Concert was presented later in the day at Neumann University by the school's concert chorale singers. A 10th anniversary concert is planned for Sept. 11, 2011.
Aston Township Commissioners President Gary Robinson addresses the crowd at the solemn Patriot's Day ceremony.
In recognition of the selfless service and sacrifice of military veterans, plaques were bestowed upon (from left to right) Jack Kowal, representing the American Legion Family of Post 926, Ray Taylor of VFW Post 6613, and John Harper of AL Post 87. The tokens of appreciation came from local scouting groups, represented by (left to right) Girl Scout Troop 57075 Leader Beth McCullough, Barbara Krisack of the PennDelco Service Unit, Boy Scout Troop 225 Leader Barry Pinkowicz, and Cub Scout Pack 77 Leader Ed Gane.
*** Volunteer Creek Cleaners Help Restore Waterway
Part of the volunteer work crew that helped remove tons of debris from the West Branch of Chester Creek on Sept. 11 poses with the filthy fruits of their earnest efforts.
In the wake of the removal of a Chester Creek dam, a hardy group of volunteers waded into the stream bed to remove debris that was inhibiting improved water flow - one of the main objectives of the dam removal. The debris included 28 tires, three steel drums, a rowboat, washing machine parts, and a kitchen sink. The workers came from three local groups dedicated to maintaining a healthy creek, including Delco Field & Stream, C-R-C Watersheds Association, and Trout Unlimited. The creek clean-up effort will be repeated next May.
Township offices will be closed and no trash or recycling will be collected on Labor Day - Monday, Oct. 11 Monday's regular trash route will be picked up on Tues., Oct. 12. ***
Community Day: Oct. 2 - Be There! The 9th annual Aston Township/ABA Community Day celebration will be held at the Community Center on Concord Rd. on Saturday, Oct. 2,
with a rain date of Oct. 3. Planned events include: 11am - The kick-off parade, which starts at Neumann University and proceeds down Concord Rd. 12-4pm - Opening ceremonies at the Community Center on Concord Rd., including a performance by the Neumann University Concert Chorale singers. The ABA Business Expo inside Rick Owsley Fieldhouse, and silent auction of framed photos and prints. A variety of outdoor rides, free food, games and contests. (more details on page 2)
Aston Township's Community Day is always something to sing about!
Community Day - Be There! (cont. from page 1) Kick-off Parade: Community Day will begin at 11am with a parade that will proceed east on Concord Rd. from Neumann University (starting at Neumann Drive) to the Community Center. The parade will feature fire trucks, decorated floats, a decorated bike brigade (see Contests below), local entertainment and a variety of township organizations, as well as bagpipers and the Duffy String Band. For parade information, email Paula Turnbach at firstname.lastname@example.org. 12th Annual ABA Business Expo: Starting at noon, the Community Center gym will be filled with tables representing scores of Aston businesses. Be sure to take a stroll around the loop to learn more about local commerce and to take advantage of all the free promotional giveaways. Silent Auction: Framed photos and prints will be on display in the Community Center meeting room and sold via silent auction. Contests: Several competitions will be held this year, including a Decorated Bike Contest, hula-hoop contest, Pizza Bake-off, and PieEating Contest. Bike Contest participants will compete for prizes and must pre-register. Judging will be done in the Big Lots parking lot, and the winners will be announced during the opening ceremonies. For more information, including where to pick up registration forms, contact Maureen Dillon at email@example.com. Local pizza parlors will compete for the title of best Community Day Pizza 2010, starting at 2pm. To register for the Pizza Bake-off, send email to Sean Joyce at firstname.lastname@example.org. A Pie-Eating Contest will be open to residents of all ages and start at 1pm. To learn more and/or register for this event, call Florence Fisher at 610-4591166. Access to all the free rides, games, and food will be limited to Aston residents wearing Community Day wristbands. Wristbands can be purchased the day of the event or in advance on Friday, Oct. 1 from 1-3pm at the municipal building and during the evening from 6-7:30pm at the Community Center. The nominal cost is $2 each or six for $10, with proof of residency required.
Amusements: The fun will include pumpkin painting for kids, a dunk tank, extreme rock-climbing wall, jousting arena, and a large slide. More Community Day details will be posted on cable TV channel 10. For general information, or to sign up as a volunteer, call Maryann Bullen at 610-494-2337 or send email to email@example.com. ***
To learn more about Aston businesses, visit the upgraded Aston Business Association website at
www.abaaston.com *** Developments Garner Approval Commissioners recently acted on a series of development-related items, including granting final plan approval for the 10-acre Residences at Star Hill assisted-living complex to be located on the sloping hillside between Pennell and Old Pennell Rds. and accessed at the terminus of North Manor Drive. The 77,000-square foot, 224-unit facility will be built by Joseph Grace Co. and is slated for completion in 2012. The four buildings of the residential complex will feature "green" rooftops with solar panels. Final plan approval was also granted to Gregory and Ethel Deeck, the owners of Grassman Landscaping, who plan to erect an office building and storage garage at 4300 Pennell Rd. The township formally took ownership of portions of three streets that serve the Spring Valley housing development off Birney Highway. The dedicated roadways include Spring Valley Way, Steeplechase Ln., and Linda Ln. *** Drainage Improvements Authorized Two separate contracts for drainage improvements were awarded by commissioners on Sept. 15, using money from the general fund. JMC Contractors will be paid $6,400 for drainage upgrades for Mount Rd. and Woodcrest Ave. The same contractor will be paid $10,750 for improvements to 3090 Highwoods Dr., with the property owner paying $2,950 of the total cost. ***
Commissioners OK Expenditures To meet the township's minimum municipal obligation, as required by PA Act 44, commissioners recently authorized the allocation of $750,455 to the police pension fund and $60,597 for the non-uniform employee pension fund in the township's 2011 budget. -The last year of a three-year contract with Charles A. Higgins & Sons was approved in the amount of $3,195 for traffic signal maintenance until Oct. 1, 2011. -The purchase of a 2011 Peterbilt recycling truck for $145,905.50 was also approved by the township. All but $1,905.50 of the cost will be covered by an Act 101 Acquisition Grant. -Bid specs are being prepared for two other purchases, including an emergency generator (about $80,000), which would keep the entire Community Center and library up and running in the event of a power outage, and back-flow preventer valves (about $72,000) for homes on Edgar Ave. Both of these equipment purchases will be funded by grants. *** TCC Alternate Named Commissioners have appointed Aston Township Tax Collector Joseph DeVuono to serve as the second alternate voting delegate to the Tax Collection Committee for Delaware County. The TCC will meet to discuss the possibility of consolidating tax collection services in Pennsylvania. The previously appointed delegate is Township Manager Dick Lehr, while the first alternate is Commissioners VP Michael Higgins. Township Finance Manager Maureen Schmitt had been named as the second alternate, but resigned from the post. *** Ordinance Amendments Proposed Commissioners have announced their intent to amend the language contained in two ordinances. Changes to Ordinance 791 would modify the circumstances under which the township could recover police service costs. Proposed changes to Chapter 1461.02 of the township code would modify the information required for the issuance of an operating license for rental properties. Both ordinance amendments will come before commissioners for adoption at their Oct. 20 meeting.
Support White Cane Collections Members of the Aston Township Lions Club will soon be seen around town making White Cane collections that help support a variety of charities. White Cane collectors will be stationed at several local businesses on Friday, Oct. 1, and on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, Oct. 6-8. Please support the Lions' charitable efforts. *** Calling All Korean War And World War II Vets State Representative Stephen Barrar is organizing a tribute to veterans who served during the Korean War era. A ceremony is planned for October. A list of vets from the 160th Legislative District is now being compiled. To participate in this event, call Barrar's office at 610-485-7606 or visit his website at SteveBarrar.com. * All Delco WWII vets are invited to attend a special Salute to the Greatest Generation at the Knights of Columbus in Springfield, from 1-5pm on Sunday, Oct. 10. The $15 admission ticket includes a buffet meal, awards presentation, door prizes, entertainment and music. Seating is limited. For more information on this event, call Jake Knapp at 610-345-1037. *** Everyone Loves A Parade The Aston-Beechwood Volunteer Fire Co. will have the honor of hosting the 2010 Delaware County Fireman's Association Annual Parade at noon on Saturday, Oct. 9, rain or shine. Registration for participants starts at 8am. To join the parade, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org. All Aston residents are invited to turn out and watch the procession make its way from Turner Industrial Way, along Duttons Mill Rd., Concord Rd., and Aston Mills Rd. to the AstonBeechwood firehouse on Mount Rd., where an awards ceremony is planned. Food and beverages will be served and merchandise sold at the stationhouse. For more parade information, visit www.astonbeechwood72.com. *** Sun East Flea Market Returns Sun East Federal Credit Union will be holding its fifth annual Community Flea Market from 9am-2pm on Saturday, Oct. 16. Rain date: Oct. 17
Spaces in the SEFCU parking lot (located off West Duttons Mill Rd., near its intersection with Pennell Rd.) are available at $20 each. Vendors should bring their own tables and chairs, and can start setting up at 7am. For more information, contact Gina at 610-485-2960, ext. 292. *** Craft Fair/Flea Market Coming A Fall Flea Market and Craft Fair will be held by the Women's Republican Club of Aston from 9am-2pm on Sunday, Oct. 17 in the parking lot of Planet Fitness at the intersection of Pennell and Marianville Rds. Vendors will pay $20 for two parking spaces or $35 for four spaces, and must bring their own tables. Hot dogs, sodas, and baked goods will be for sale. For more event information, call Florence Fisher at 610-459-1166. *** GFWC Supports Juvenile Diabetes Research...And So Can You! The General Federation of Women's Clubs of Aston recently donated an $1,800 check to Coordinating Manager Mary Jane McDevitt of the Springfield Hospital's Center for Diabetes. The funds will help further research in the ongoing quest for a cure to juvenile diabetes. Anyone interested in supporting this cause can join the Mighty McDevitts Team at the Walk To Cure Diabetes in Philadelphia from 9-11am on Sunday, Oct. 24. For more information, send email to MJMcDevitt26@yahoo.com. *** Rotary Offers Run For Fun The Glen Riddle Rotary will be hosting a 5K Run For Fun on Oct. 24. The race will begin at Sun Valley High School at 9am and end at the same locale. The pre-registration fee (before Oct. 17) is $20, with a fee of $25 to register on race day (from 7:45-8:30am). All pre-registered participants will receive a free t-shirt. Prizes will be awarded in seven different age groups, from 13 & under to 60 & over. For more Run For Fun information, including available sponsorships, visit www.rotary7450.org/GlenRiddle or call Steve Byrne at 610-565-3679, ext. 101 or Denise Romanelli at 610-4852960, ext. 280. ***
Public Meetings and Special Events October 11 (Monday) Township offices closed; No trash or recycling collections Columbus Day Holiday October 12, 2010 (Tuesday) 6:30pm in municipal building Public Works Committee Meeting October 12, 2010 (Tuesday) 7:30pm in municipal building Citizens Advisory Committee Meeting October 12, 2010 (Tuesday) 7:30pm in municipal building New Construction Committee Meeting October 13, 2010 (Wednesday) 6:30pm in municipal building Police Committee Meeting October 13, 2010 (Wednesday) 7:30pm in municipal building Executive Committee Meeting October 18, 2010 (Monday) Curbside leaf collections start; as needed, weather permitting October 19, 2010 (Tuesday) 7pm at Aston Public Library Library Board Meeting October 20, 2010 (Wednesday) 7pm in municipal building Board of Commissioners Meeting October 26, 2010 (Tuesday) 7pm in municipal building Zoning Hearing Board Meeting October 27, 2010 (Wednesday) 7pm in municipal building Planning Commission Meeting October 28-31, 2010 (Thursday-Sunday) Temporary curfew - 9pm to sunrise for persons under 18 years of age *** Lions Cooking Breakfast The Aston Lions Club will be holding its semi-annual pancake breakfast at the Community Center from 7am-1pm on Sunday, Nov. 7. A complete meal of scrambled eggs, pancakes with maple syrup, sausage, orange juice, and coffee is offered at $6 for adults; $5 for seniors; and $4 for children under 12. ***
Father and son members of Boy Scout Troop 225, Ryan and Barry Pinkowicz (center), recently received the Jimmy Stewart Good Citizenship Award for the duo's landscaping work prior to the June 2009 dedication of the Aston Township Veterans Memorial Garden. The proud pair pose here with Assistant Scoutmaster Jack McLaughlin (left) and Scoutmaster Glen Clark.
*** Aston Seniors Keeping Tabs On Charity In support of the Ronald McDonald House of Delaware, Aston Senior Citizens are collecting the pop tabs from aluminum cans. The Ronald McDonald House is a home away from home for critically ill or injured children and their families. The charity receives an average of 30 cents per pound of can tabs collected, with 1,267 tabs in every pound. Collecting just the tab is more space efficient, as there is more aluminum in each tab than in the can itself. In 2009, the Ronald McDonald House received $5,310 from pop tabs, with over 17 million collected by groups like the ASC. Please bring your tabs to the next ASC meeting, or contact Marge Dwyer at 610-497-1666 for more information. The next meeting of Aston Senior Citizens will be held at the Community Center on Oct. 28, starting at 10:45 am. Persons wishing to attend the Christmas Show with the Baltimore Pops on Dec. 15 must pay for tickets ($100) at the ASC October meeting. *** Aston-Chichester AARP Plans Trip The next meeting of the AstonChichester Chapter of AARP will be held at 10:45am on Oct. 25 at St. James Episcopal Church on Concord Rd. A bus trip to the Tropicana Casino in Atlantic City is planned for Nov. 10 to see their Christmas Show. The cost is $22 per person. The bus leaves at 10:30am and returns by 7:30pm. For more trip information or to reserve a seat, call Margo at 610-358-0704.
Lionesses Host Events The Aston Lioness Club is holding a Psychic Fair from 5-11pm on Thursday, Oct. 21 at American Legion Post 926 on Concord Rd. Admission is $5 per person, with readings being $20 each. To learn more about this event, call Janet at 610-459-0125 or Marge at 610-494-2368. The Lady Lions are also hosting a day trip to New York City on Saturday, Nov. 6. Participants will depart from the Valley View Shopping Center at 8am, ride a bus to Grand Central Station, then return home by 6pm. Cost is $40.00 per person. For more information, call Trisha at 484-433-9137. A Craft Fair on Nov. 14 will also be hosted by Lionesses. The fair will run from 10am-3pm at the Community Center and will feature a wide variety of handmade crafts in a variety of mediums. Admission is free. Fair attendees will enjoy refreshments; free massages from 11am-1pm,; and a visit from Santa from 1-3pm. ***
Paul Maletsky, chairman of the Aston Lions Club's Used Eyeglasses Committee, stands behind one of two eyeglass drop-off containers in Aston. This drop-off is located at the Village Green Shopping Center on Concord Rd., while the other is inside the Community Center. Prescription eyeglasses are collected for use by needy children and adults. Sunglasses must be prescription to be of use for this recycling program.
Some serious late-summer reading was going on, as evidenced by the book drop area of the Aston Public Library on the heels of the Labor Day weekend.
Bargains Abound At Library Book Sale The Aston Public Library's big annual book sale will be held by Friends of the Library from 10-5pm on Friday, Oct. 1 and Saturday, Oct. 2. Most items offered are $2 or less. -Library patrons can participate in a special event and help set a new world record at 10:30am on Tuesday and Thursday, Oct. 5 and 7. By joining in the reading of Keats' The Snowy Day with storyteller Ms. Joanne, you and your child can be part of a worldwide effort to promote reading to children. Visit www.readfortherecord.org to learn more about this unique event. -Flu shots will be available at the Aston Public Library from 1:303:30pm on Saturday, Oct. 9. The cost of each flu inoculation is $30. -The library will be closed on Columbus Day, Oct. 11. Otherwise, the regular hours are 10am-8pm Monday through Thursday, and 10am5pm on Fridays and Saturdays. -The library now has free "Fit Kits", courtesy of the Delaware County Library System. Each kit is a bag of materials containing exercise information and equipment. Kits come in Biggest Loser, Nutrition, or Home Gym versions. Search under "Title" in the catalog to see what is available. *** Park Is For Pedestrians Residents should take note that cars are not permitted in Vinsmith Park. Violating vehicles will be towed. *** All newsletter submissions must be received by the 24th of the month. Submit newsletter information to email@example.com or to firstname.lastname@example.org ***
Recycling Reduces Trash Fees The amount Aston residents ultimately pay for trash processing depends on the total tonnage collected and how much trash tonnage is reduced through recycling. Recyclables include: cartons (milk/ juice), aluminum/metal cans, #1 and #2 plastic bottles and jugs (caps removed), phone books, greeting cards and junk mail, glass bottles and jars, loose metal jar lids and steel bottle caps, paper towel rolls, corrugated cardboard and paper bags (flattened). ***Please note: All recyclables must be separated from regular trash. Different types of recyclable items can be co-mingled in a recycling can, but newspapers should be bundled or bagged and placed next to the can. For the months of July and August combined, recycling collections yielded 110.5 tons of co-mingled items, 16.7 tons of newspaper dropped off at the municipal building container, 4.4 tons of scrap metal, 142 lbs. of aluminum cans, and 160 gallons of used motor oil for a total township revenue of $3,110. *** Fighting West Nile Virus Residents are urged to help fight the spread of West Nile Virus. Since the disease is carried by mosquitoes, eliminating stagnant water that could become a mosquito breeding ground is the most effective weapon. To keep stagnant water in check, property owners should dispose of any outdoor cans, buckets, ceramic pots, or discarded tires that might hold water. Cleaning clogged roof gutters and changing birdbath water daily is advised. Idle plastic wading pools and wheelbarrows should be turned over. To prevent mosquito bites, make sure window and door screens are tight. Reduce exposure by staying indoors at dawn and dusk (when the insects are active) and by wearing long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and socks outdoors. *** Township Restricts Fire Uses As a public safety measure, commissioners have changed the township code to regulate a variety of uses for fire within the township. The board amended Chapter 660 by adopting a policy to regulate the following fire uses: Open fires (burning debris), recreational fires, and fires in fire pits, kettles,
Chimineas, or similar fire-holding devices. The new regulations are effective as of Aug. 1, and include mandatory safety precautions; times/days when fires are permitted; and rules for proper use/operation of fire containers. *** Emergency Preparation Begins At Home When the wind blows hard or the flood waters rise, citizens count on emergency services to protect our town's health and welfare, but it is also important that each individual household recognizes the need for emergency preparation. Among the precautions that every family should take is establishing a crisis plan in advance. Many hazardous situations call for sheltering-in-place. A flashlight, battery-operated radio, and fresh batteries are among the items that should be kept at home for emergencies. If evacuation is called for, secure your home; bring pets indoors and provide them with food and water for at least three days; and bring along extra clothing, medications, and bedding or blankets for your family. An emergency evacuation supply kit should be pre-packed and easily accessible, and should include cash, non-perishable foods and bottled water, personal toiletries and first-aid items, an extra set of car/house keys, and important documents (photo id, insurance cards, etc.) In the event of a community-wide emergency, do not call 911 unless reporting an immediate lifethreatening situation. *** Beware Thefts From Vehicles Aston police are advising residents to avoid keeping valuables in vehicles. Thefts from parked vehicles are on the rise in Delco, and Aston is no exception. Break-ins occur day and night, targeting locked and unlocked cars. The most common items stolen are electronic equipment, like laptop computers and GPS units. * To maintain a safe environment for children, all residents, and especially those who live near schools, are urged to dial 911 or call the Aston PD at 610-497-2633 to report suspicious activity of any kind.
*** If any resident knows of an Aston veteran who is returning home from overseas duty, please notify the township office of the expected date and time of arrival, so that a red carpet welcome can be organized. *** Memorial Garden Needs Donors To help pay off construction of the Aston Township Veterans Memorial Garden, engraved 4 x 8-inch paver bricks for the monument courtyard are still available at $100 each or three for $250. Flag sponsorships are available for $3,000, and seat wall plaques are $500 each. For more information, contact Maryann Bullen at 610-494-2337. *** Free Smoke Detectors To learn how to receive a free smoke detector for your home, visit www.astonbeechwood72.com *** Citizens Advisory Committee Looks To Build Team The Citizens Advisory Committee currently has seven members - one from each ward - but Commissioner Jim Stigale would like to see the group expand. The CAC has only met a few times, but has already put together an ambitious agenda that will benefit the community, and hopefully attract more residents to join the process. A family safety presentation at the Community Center on July 28 was the first of several special events that are being planned by the CAC. A disaster preparation seminar for the elderly is in the works, as is an Aston talent search this fall, breakfast with Santa in December, and a senior citizen dance in January. Although all plans are tentative at this point, the ideas that are coming out of the CAC are impressive and exciting. Do you have a suggestion for a community event in Aston? If so, please join the CAC or utilize the suggestion box that will be on the CAC table on Community Day-Oct. 2. *** You can follow the Aston Public Library on Facebook by visiting www.facebook.com/astonlibrary. or get all the latest library news at www.astonlibrary.org. ***
Tech Schools Slate Tech Fest The Delaware County Technical High Schools (both Aston and Folcroft campuses) will be holding a Tech Fest from 1-4pm on Sunday, Nov. 7. The public is invited to this free event to enjoy the hands-on displays and to explore the career opportunities being offered to students. *** Hometown Historian Tells Tales of Aston Mills Lifetime Aston resident Paul Dougherty, who founded the Aston Township Historical Society in 1993, recently completed a 40-page booklet of his hometown recollections, entitled Growing Up In Aston Mills. The pocket-sized book gives the reader a glimpse of a by-gone era in Aston's storied history. The tales told span the 20th century, while the educational text is augmented by black & white photos of yesteryear. Dougherty reveals many personal details of his own childhood, but also relates the evolution of Aston from industrial mill town to thriving suburb. The booklet contains stories that few Aston residents would recall today, such as the following excerpt:
Village Green Race Track: Jim Stark owned and operated several jitneys (small buses with bench seats) that would transport passengers from Aston Mills to Chester or Marcus Hook for about 5 cents per ride. Stark operated his jitney service from around 1915 until 1929, when the Shortline Bus Company came in with a franchise and put him out of business. Jim's entrepreneurial spirit was not easily broken, however, as he soon opened an auto racing track on the vacant northeast corner at Cherry Tree and Concord Road (behind today's Towne and Country Cafe) in the area known to locals as Chelsea. James E. Stark's son was named James William, but everyone called him Billy to avoid confusion with his wellknown father. Billy Stark helped his father build the quarter-mile
dirt track at Chelsea, and at age 12 was responsible for driving the tractor that pulled a grater over the track between races to eliminate ruts. The Village Green Race Track was sanctioned by the Racing Association of Pennsylvania. The cars that raced on the oval at Chelsea were known as jalopies and could reach straightaway speeds of about 40 mph. Jalopy race winners at the Village Green Track claimed a small trophy, a small cash prize, and bragging rights for the day." Copies of Growing Up In Aston Mills are for sale for $5 each at the Aston Township Historical Society room at the Community Center on Monday evenings and every day at Aston Pharmacy, located at the corner of Scheivert Ave. and Concord Rd. All proceeds will benefit the ATHS and help preserve historical resources. ***