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The Latest Edition of Voices of Central Pa


A Sampling of Summer Festivals around Centre County

By: Sara Blackwell

State College Horse Show Series

July 1-5 2009

The State College Horse Show Series will be held Wednesday July 1 through Sunday July 5. The show will feature over 500 horses. The shows include nationally rated horses. For more information visit:

Central PA 4th Fest

July 4, 2009

The Central PA 4th Fest has been held in State College for over 80 years. Centre County has had a celebration every year since 1927. The celebration will be held Saturday July 4. The day is filled with fun for the entire family. The 8th annual Firecracker 4K Race begins at 9a.m. And goes through the Penn State campus. There are prizes awarded to the top male and female, as well as to all age groups. There will be activities and entertainment. A few of the activities include: a pyrotechnics demonstration, held in the pyro demo tent , which will show those attending what goes into making the fireworks display come alive. In the Stadium Lot West there will be free hot dogs and chips from 4p.m to 8p.m., and there will be a golf ball pyramid demonstration at Founder’s Mall. Entertainment will be provided at the White Stage, Blue Stage and the Towne Square. Entertainment events begin at 2p.m. The fireworks show will begin at 9:15p.m., and is ranked as one of the greatest displays in America. Be sure to check the website for more activity listings as well as a full schedule of entertainment events, and a listing of where the events will take place. Any additional information can be found at

Philipsburg Heritage Days

July 7-12 2009
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State College Photo Club Winners

1st Open Keep your distance Bill Mertens

1st Theme Broken Chair Elizabeth Pennock

Some of the recent winning photos from the State College Photo Club competitions. These photos were from the online competition - the theme for the theme competition was "worn out". Get more information at (click the headline for more winning photos)

Multiracial support group fulfills residents’ needs

By Suzan Erem

Photo by Rupesh R. Kariyat. The Jacksons, from left, Jayson, Devon, Lesley and their dogs Raven and Bailee, have found support in the Multiracial/Multicline Family Resource Community.

They are singles and couples, with and without children, in all shades and shapes, from around the country and around the world — and they defy the usual descriptors of “black” or “white” or “Latino” or “Asian.”

Membership in the Multiracial Family Support Group is growing, the ongoing result of the melting pot America and Centre County are becoming after years of institutionalized racism. Even the name of the group continues to evolve, most recently to Multiracial/Multicline Family Resource Community to recognize that race is a man-made definition and that “cline,” or phenotype, better describes the physical differences in people.

I felt it would be good for my son,” explained organizer Denise Hinds-Zaami, a counselor with the Multicultural Resource Center at Penn State, about organizing the group. “He has a sense of social justice in him.”

After a racist altercation two years ago involving her son Mahdi at State College Area High School, Hinds-Zaami called in the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission. Out of that incident came the Student Problem Identification and Resolution of Issues Together (SPIRIT) program at the school. Read more »

State College proves not recession-proof

by Tamara Conrad and Delia Guzman, Photo by Delia Guzman

Recession hits State College

The End Result, in business since 1971, is one of many business casualties of the down economy.


Despite the conventional wisdom that college towns are “recession-proof,” the sight of empty storefronts with papered- or painted-over windows is becoming more common as the economy continues to sputter and business slows. Several downtown State College stores, such as Insomnia Cookies and The End Result, are either closed or in the process of closing despite the ever-growing student population of Penn State.

Laura Herman, owner of The Roost, Crushed Ice, and The End Result — all clothing and accessories stores that cater to a younger clientele — has decided to close The End Result and Crushed Ice and cited the economy as a factor.

The End Result has been in Herman’s family since 1971, she said, but the store will be closing soon.

Initially I decided to close Crushed Ice because the lease for that space was up, and it seemed like a good time,” said Herman. “But I changed my plans and decided to keep that space and The Roost. I’m trying to cut back on as many expenses as possible, and it’ll be easier to keep an eye on things with the businesses right next to each other.” Read more »

State College Photo Club Winners

1st Open Antique Royal Marion Deppen

1st Theme What Better Use For Glass Jane Baum

Some of the Winning photos from the State College Photo Club. Get more information at (click the headline for more winning photos) Read more »

Sexting: Harmless fad or a criminal act?

Sexting: Harmless fad or a criminal act?

by Lucy Green,  Photos and Cover by Doug Bauman

In an April episode of “Law and Order: Special Victims Unit,” a pretty blond 15-year-old walks down a hall in her high school, looking increasingly bewildered.

We all love you, Kim,” one boy says to her.

And we’ve seen what he loves,” another hisses.

Hey Kim, wanna borrow my Wonderbra?” a girl taunts.

When’s the next show?” shouts a grinning boy.

Who else are you putting out for?” a girl asks, glowering in disgust.

Eventually, Kim finds out that everyone in the school has seen the nude photographs Kim took of herself and sent via text message to her boyfriend.

It’s easy to pass off the episode as television doing what television does best: sensationalizing, dramatizing, transporting us to a fictional world that seems real for 60 minutes and then depositing us on our couches with a satisfying conclusion. Read more »

Biodiesel mandate effects still unclear

By Craig Keener

Pennsylvania’s recent biodiesel mandate took effect Jan. 15 of this year, but it’s still uncertain what it will mean for local farmers across the state, including dairy farmers in Centre County.

The Biodiesel & Ethanol Incentives Mandate calls for all diesel fuel sold within the state to contain a minimum of two percent biodiesel per gallon. The biodiesel will be created from in-state production facilities and help create a renewable fuel source that will rely on raw commodities from Pennsylvania’s farms, according to a National Biodiesel Board press release.

While the legislation has had many favorable responses, Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture (PASA) director Brian Snyder thinks that the legislation is addressing the wrong issue.

“We can’t solve the energy or climate problems just by replacing imported oil with domestically produced product,” he said. “We must simply use less of either, much less.”

Using large amounts of soybeans, and the land they grow on, for biodiesel instead of food raises concerns that food prices will jump.

Ethanol, a fuel source that in the United States relies on corn, has been responsible for a 10 to 15 percent increase in food costs in the past year, according to the Congressional Budget Office. About one-fourth of corn grown in the United States is being used to create ethanol, thus creating a smaller supply of corn for consumption, the CBO reported last month.

But other local experts support the mandate, saying it is a practical first step to reducing fuel’s impact on the environment. Read more »

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