Tri-State briefs

September 13, 2009

Day care new playgrounds open Monday

SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va. -- Shepherdstown Day Care will celebrate the official opening of its new playgrounds Monday with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and community party at 4 p.m.

Guest Ronald McDonald will help the day-care children, staff and board of directors thank the members of the community who contributed funds and work to the project.

Features of the newly renovated outdoor space include separate age-specific playgrounds, climbing equipment, landscaped tricycle paths, a climbing berm for toddlers and trees peppered throughout.

A preschool climber, funded by a grant from Ronald McDonald House Charities, Washington, D.C., is the centerpiece of the center's new outside space.


Forums scheduled on various topics of John Brown's raid

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. -- The Jefferson County Black History Preservation Society will present a forum on Wednesday, Sept. 16, at 7 p.m. on the involvement of Heyward Shepherd and Osborne Anderson in John Brown's raid on Harpers Ferry.

These two individuals were involved in the 1859 raid that led to the capture, hanging and execution of Brown and members of his "army."

Shepherd was a baggage handler from nearby Winchester and was the first person shot by Brown's people. Anderson escaped execution by fleeing after the raid by walking through the mountains into Pennsylvania.

Linda Murr of Winchester, Va., and Dennis Howard of Prince George's County, Md., will make presentations and debate. Dwayne Wright of Shepherd University's department of education will serve as the moderator.

Wright is a first-year faculty member at Shepherd University with extensive involvement in black history educational issues in Ohio. 

The forum will be held at Masonic Star Lodge No. 1 on Martin Delany Way in Charles Town.

This is the first of four forums sponsored by the Jefferson County Black History Preservation Society.

The other three scheduled forums are Oct. 21, Lewis Leary and Dangerfield Newby, two of the raiders that were killed in the raid on Harpers Ferry; Nov. 18, a roundtable discussion on John Brown as savior or terrorist; and Dec. 16, a forum to discuss John Copeland and Shield Green, two of the raiders who were hung.

Pa. emergency service providers urged to apply for state grants

HARRISBURG, Pa. -- State Rep. Todd Rock, R-Franklin, is encouraging local volunteer fire departments and volunteer ambulance services to apply for state grants through the office of the State Fire Commissioner.

Last year, Franklin County-area fire and ambulance organizations received more than $101,770 in funding from the program, which was created by the General Assembly as Act 10 of 2007. The program is funded through state gaming proceeds.

The grants may be used for construction or renovation of a unit's station, the purchase or repair of equipment, training or debt reduction. The maximum grant amount is $15,000 for volunteer fire companies and $10,000 for volunteer ambulance services. A total of $25 million will be awarded through the program.

Applications are available online from the Office of the State Fire Commissioner. Online applications will only be accepted through Oct. 23.

For more information, go to and click on "Fire and Ambulance Grants."

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