THE ISSUE: It’s Friday, the day we take a few moments to highlight the good news in Lancaster County and the surrounding region. Some of these items are welcome developments on the economic front or for area neighborhoods. Others are local stories of achievement, ingenuity, perseverance, compassion and creativity that represent welcome points of light as we face critical issues in Pennsylvania and stressful situations in our nation and world. All of this uplifting news deserves a brighter spotlight.
We enjoyed reading the story of 89-year-old Ruby Miller, who founded and leads a twice-a-week walking group at her active adult community in Lititz.
“I feel exercise should be a priority for all ages,” Miller told LNP | LancasterOnline correspondent Carole Deck for the article that was published Sunday.
The group, which was founded in 2015, goes for a 4- to 5-mile walk every Tuesday and Thursday morning.
It’s just the latest chapter in Miller’s lifetime of putting a priority on walking and exercise.
Her enthusiasm for walking, specifically, began while working as a nurse and later as a guidance counselor in the Manheim Central School District.
“Miller incorporated exercise into her routine by working around her teenage children’s schedules,” Decker wrote. “She’d drive to work, then leave the car at school for her kids to drive home after sports practices or games.”
The walk home was 4 miles.
Today she gets her exercise at Traditions of America not just from walking, but from yoga, weightlifting workouts and water aerobics.
Her regimen has inspired others at the active adult community.
Maureen Rostolsky, 75, who joined the walking group seven years ago, said she was unsure at first, because the typical twice-a-week walk includes a fairly steep hill.
“But I decided if Ruby can do it, I can, too,” Rostolsky told Deck.
And the walks provide more than just physical stimulation. They’re great opportunities to socialize and converse.
“Our mixed group of professionals have solved many of the world’s problems on our walks,” joked Mary Ann Gray-Schlegel, a retired Millersville University professor of elementary education.
She jokes, but conversation is often a first step — in this case, literally — toward bringing people together.
In other good things:
— A team from Clair Global, a Lititz-based company that provides sound for some of the biggest concert tours in the United States and world, won a Creative Arts Emmy on Sunday for its sound work on the concert special “Elton John Live: Farewell from Dodger Stadium.”
The Creative Arts Emmys honor “artistic and technical achievement in American prime time television,” LNP | LancasterOnline’s Mary Ellen Wright reported.
The winning team members from Clair Global are Michael Abbott, broadcast production mixer; Erick Schilling, music mixer; Matt Herr, front of house mixer; Alan Richardson, monitor mixer; and Christian Schrader, supplemental audio mixer.
Clair Global was founded in 1966 by Lititz brothers Roy and Gene Clair.
“They famously provided sound for a Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons concert at Franklin & Marshall College in 1966,” Wright wrote. “They impressed the band and wound up touring with them.”
The Elton John concert that Clair Global won this Emmy for was produced in 2022 and is still airing on the streaming service Disney+, if you want to check it out.
— It’s been a rough couple of years for school and public libraries, which have been unfairly targeted in the culture wars playing out across the political landscape.
Libraries need and deserve our full support for the vital work they do to support communities. Some of the ways in which libraries specifically do that in Lancaster County were detailed in a recent article by LNP | LancasterOnline’s Jade Campos.
At the Quarryville Library Center in the southern part of Lancaster County, patrons — many of whom don’t have computers or internet access — wait their turn to use the library’s computers.
And there are the Amish and Mennonite residents who depend upon the library’s large collection for their home-schooling needs; some check out 100 books at time, library director Sarah Bower told Stalnecker.
The library serves as a host location for community events ranging from Boy Scout meetings to knitting clubs to resume-building workshops to gaming clubs for kids.
And let’s not leave out the singalong story time for babies and their parents. In addition to entertaining the little ones, “the free program gives stay-at-home moms an opportunity to get out of the house and meet new people,” Stalnecker notes.
“Lancaster County’s libraries play the critical role of equalizing access to a wide range of information for all members of our community,” Dave Koser, director of programs at the Lancaster County Community Foundation, told LNP | LancasterOnline via email. “In our information age, free access to resources is essential for all residents to learn and thrive.”
These are all good things. And they are reasons we should all resoundingly support our public libraries.