Making connections within the classroom

First Posted: 10/13/2014

Wish you could have been at the storytelling class! Not only have we heard some great stories, but we have challenged our fears and overcome them (to greater and lesser degrees). Some of us have soldiered on, determined not to be undone, while others have bloomed, found they have a real talent for it and become bonafide “storytellers.” On all accounts, Monday evenings have been educational, emotional and downright fun nights of sharing stories of our lives.

And you get to share in the fun. Come to Duffy’s on Saturday, Oct. 25 for a story slam experience. A few experienced storytellers will perform their true stories for you. Be there, bring your empathy and funny bones and enjoy an evening of storytelling.

October is full of classes. Meditation began last Thursday, Psalms will start Thursday, Oct. 16 as will a two-hour course called Medicare 101. The Cemetery Walk at Clarks Green Cemetery will take off from the Stone Avenue entrance at 3 p.m. Oct. 18, so hurry to register. Dates for Pottery at Abington Art Studio are set for 7 p.m. Oct. 27 and Nov. 3 and 17. This is a class for everyone – come and get your hands dirty.

Handmade Holidays – making one of a kind Christmas cards should get you in the mood for the holidays. Meet Nancy at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 30 for a creative night of card-making.

Tara Atkins will introduce you to Organizing for the Holidays. Who couldn’t use some help with that? This class is just $15 and imagine what that might save you in anxiety and stress. Tara is always fun, instructive and full of good ideas.

Ballroom Dancing begins its series on Monday, Oct. 20 with Advanced Night Club Two-Step at 6 p.m., Intermediate Foxtrot and Swing Part 2 at 7 p.m. and Beginner Night Club Two-Step at 8 p.m.

Our fall semester will draw to a close on Nov. 13 and we will look ahead to spring. We have already planned a small bus trip to the Philadelphia Flower Show for March 4, and a NYC do-your-own-thing bus trip for April.

We have always looked at the Abington Area Classroom as an opportunity for community members to share their talents with each other. So if you, or a friend, have a skill or knowledge you would like to share or teach, look us up at, fill out an instructor form, mail it to AACC 1658 Falls Road, Clarks Summit. We will begin planning our spring semester soon.

As one of our storytellers said this week, “You never know what will happen when you take a leap of faith.” We have seen what springs back from that leap every semester of the Abington Area Community Classroom. Connections are made between people, the interaction of craft and maker, of the written and spoken word, of the mind and spirit.

None of this would have happened without that leap of faith taken by our committee four years ago. Now we are asking the community to join us in another leap called The Gathering Place initiative. Every community needs a third place that invites all people to meet and mix and share ideas. Growing numbers of towns are investing in their core business districts to utilize vacant properties, promote economic growth and development and attract people to town centers so all can benefit.

The renovation of the old firehall into The Gathering Place is an initiative to give Clarks Summit this third place, a home for the Community Classroom, a place for Verve Vertu Art Studio that provides hope and purpose to people with special needs, an art gallery run for and by artists that applauds and encourages creativity, a place with potential for anything.

The ramifications of The Gathering Place will be far-reaching (think collaborations and connections). We hope it will be that safe place where we can all learn and share and grow and it will have a positive effect on the community at large.

The Gathering Hour Auction and Fundraiser happens from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 19. Tickets are $50. Light fare and spirits will be served.

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