Smiles, laughter and excitement were everywhere Sunday afternoon as the McCaffrey's Christmas Parade spread music and joy from one end of Newtown to the other. Organized by the Newtown Business Association, the parade had all the trimmings of the season from dancing trees and candy canes to Santa and Mrs. Claus who traveled from the North Pole for the parade. "Ho! Ho! Ho! Merry Christmas," said Santa from his seat of honor aboard an antique Newtown fire engine as it rolled down State Street. "What a great turnout of people," he said as he waved to the thousands of people lining the parade route from the Stocking Works, through the historic State Street business district and along Sycamore Street. "It warms my heart to see so many people and the holiday spirit alive and well in Bucks County." District Judge Mick Petrucci and Newtown Borough tax collector Judy Musto provided a running commentary of the parade from their balcony seats overlooking Sycamore Street at Goodnoe Corners. It was the place to be as performers turned the street into a stage entertaining the crowds with dancing, twirling flags and music. Escorted by Newtown Township Police Chief Rick Pasqualini and Newtown Borough Chief Tony Wojciechowski, the parade stepped off with an American Legion color guard from Newtown Post 440. Musket fire filled the air as the 1st Crossing Volunteers, an 18th century re-enactment group from Crossing Community Church, brought back the days of the American Revolution.
NEWTOWN >> As the temperature hung in the mid-90s at Walt Snyder Stadium, the Class of 2017 kept its cool using mini-fans and lining up for frequent cups of water at coolers strategically positioned on the field. As the Class sat together for its final time before departing in all directions, their classmates offered a few parting words, some sage advice on achieving success and even a cautionary note about motion sickness.
Five hundred and 23 seniors said goodbye to the hallowed halls of 2002 Rock Way Tuesday evening, June 13 at Council Rock High School South.
Billed as the biggest Holiday Parade in Bucks County, the march stepped off with Newtown Borough Police Chief Anthony Wojciechowski and motorcycle officers from Newtown Township leading the way followed by a color guard from American Legion Post 440 and the 1st Crossing Volunteers, an 18th century re-enactment group from Crossing Community Church who paused occasionally along the route to fire salutes. Newtown Borough Mayor Charles Swartz tipped his top hat to the people lining the streets as he rode by with State Representative-elect Perry Warren and borough councilor Tara Grude-McLaughlin. The Newtown Democrats and the Newtown Republicans also joined the march, including District Attorney Matthew Weintraub, Bucks County Controller Mike Gallagher and Newtown Township Supervisors Ryan Gallagher and Kyle Davis. Five string bands, including Ferko, Uptown, Quaker City, Aqua and Greater Kensington had people dancing in the streets - and on the sidewalks - to the unique Philadelphia “show of shows” sound.
“A lot can happen in five seconds,” said Jack Wheatley, one of three graduating seniors to address the Council Rock High School South Class of 2016 at this year’s graduation ceremony on June 10. Wheatley, who will be attending the honors college at Lehigh University where he will be majoring in mechanical engineering and business, encouraged his classmates to take life five seconds at a time.Senior Class President Josh Shikoff, who will be attending Penn State University where he will be majoring in business, encouraged his classmates to “live in the moment. “This is all so surreal. I can’t believe this moment is here,” he said, launching into a chorus of Nikki Minaj’s song, “Moment 4 Life.” While Shikoff encouraged his classmates to live in the moment, Phyllis Parkansky shared three “Keys to Success” with the graduating class. Parkansky, who will be attending the University of Pennsylvania where she will be majoring in biochemistry, said high school has given the graduates three major keys to future success.
In a sun-drenched Walt Snyder Stadium and before 432 classmates, graduating senior Callie Goodman relived the rollercoaster ride that was high school, inspiring the Class of 2016 with her own story of survival. The graduates also heard from Class President Cory Stillman, who shared "Common Beginnings" with the class; Andrea Bauer, who spoke about "The Roots of Education Are Bitter, but the Fruit is Sweet," and Brian Goldstein, who asked the class to "Hear Me Out."
Inside a classroom at Council Rock High School South, physics teacher J.D. Lyzinski was mesmerizing a group of fourth graders and their parents with a series of “super cool” experiments involving liquid nitrogen. When Lyzinski poured the frigid substance onto the floor, it immediately beaded up and then evaporated into a gas that quickly dissipated into the air. “That’s what happens when liquid nitrogen touches anything that’s room temperature,” he said.
The hugely popular “Touch a Truck” program, presented by the Newtown Township Parks and Recreation Department, gave youngsters between the ages of 3 and 12 an opportunity to get up close and personal with the big, hardworking trucks that the township’s Public Works and emergency services departments use to build and maintain the township’s parks and roadways and keep everyone safe. “I’m thrilled with the turnout,” said program coordinator Meghan Prusienski, as she jotted down names as families arrived. “The kids are having a great time. One little boy I talked to said he wants to own his own trash truck someday. He’s very excited,” she said. “The kids especially enjoy the monster-size of the tires and the engines. It’s not something they get to see every day.”