Adult Education in the Abingtons: Community classroom, The Gathering Place one step closer to home

The BIG news for the Abington Area Community Classroom and The Gathering Place was the awarding of a $100,000 state grant to help us renovate the lower level of the Clarks Summit Borough Building. It is a huge affirmation of our work and vision “to change the face of Clarks Summit.”

Of course, that still means we have $100,000 more to raise before the $350,000 goal is met. However, with that virtual money in hand, The Gathering Place is able to take possession of the old fire hall and hopes to begin construction in late fall. To that end, The Gathering Place presented the Clarks Summit Council with its check for the first year’s rent. We’re on our way!

That doesn’t mean we have finished our fundraising, though. If you have not been approached yet, please take the initiative and give generously to this worthy community project — one that will be here for generations now to enjo, and for generations to come to develop and use.

We are looking forward to a fun fundraiser party in the fall. Save the date of Sunday, Oct. 4 and stay tuned for further details.

You can help us initiate the first-ever 5K run in downtown Clarks Summit, co-hosted with the National Running Center on Davis Street on June 20. Bring the whole family for a 1K Fun Run/Walk, a morning of fun kid activities, a bake sale and strawberry treats abounding. The run will start at 8:30 a.m. and the morning’s activities will conclude at noon.

The AACC committee met June 9 to plan next semester’s classes. What an outstanding line-up it is!

Cooking classes will include another plant-based class with Jean and Scott Hayes and another canning class with Marie King for those who couldn’t attend last time. Leela Baikadi will teach a class on Indian cooking and Sarah McCully promises another outstanding class (to be announced).

Tim Rowlands, our county coroner, will teach CPR, something every individual should know. Our health-related classes were popular in the spring and we hope to continue to offer several topics this fall.

One exciting idea the committee is developing is a course called Humans of NEPA — a photojournalism class that will get students into the community to learn people’s stories. I can’t wait for this, since I am a big fan of Humans of New York.

If you were at the Ice Festival in February, you know that Amanda Caleb from Misericordia University is an authority on fairy tales. What a wonderful presentation she gave. Unfortunately, the acoustics were not conducive to hearing what she had to say, so we are offering it again in a quiet classroom. Learn about fairy tales and their histories in many countries and times; there’s a wonderful power point, too! She may follow that with a class on how to write your own fairy tale; we’re working on that.

Well known in this area, Cathy McAndrews is a wonderful teacher who will present a women’s journaling class, modeled after the “Artist’s Way” books of Julia Cameron.

In the planning stage are two bus trips — one to New York City and one to the Hudson River Valley. Details will be in our brochure, and before that, on our website as we get closer to our final selections.

Hope to see you at the 5K Run on June 20. Come for the run and stay for the fun!

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