“I’m part of a very multi-generational family,” said Jeff Coup, of the Coup Agency. “My brother and I are the third generation here. And the fourth generation is already working here.”
“It’s not a bedroom community, where people are transient,” said Venios, who has written several books about Milton. “Generations of families have lived here.”
But a proud heritage alone couldn’t save Milton from the trouble facing many small towns, including malls, outsourced jobs, and the economy. Milton is fighting that with its best resource: its people.
“One of the things that I love about Milton is the people,” said Maria Culp, president and CEO of the Central Pennsylvania Chamber of Commerce. She listed T.I.M.E. (The Improved Milton Experience), the Milton Industrial Park, civic organizations, and the borough’s new parking lot and renovated library, as well as caring Milton residents like the late Frank Hartzell, Sr., and borough manager Chuck Beck.
“I could name a hundred people that come to mind who are just tireless in helping the town,” she said.
It helps that so many Miltonians love their town.
“It’s got a great history and a lot of great people,” said Deb Owens, a T.I.M.E. board member. “To be able to see the town progressing and improving—” she spread her hands and smiled in satisfaction.
Coup raved about Milton’s “absolutely gorgeous” surroundings, saying, “There are wonderful country roads around here to bicycle on. I can ride for hours on a Sunday afternoon and see as many horse-and-buggies as we do cars.”
Kirby Fedder, owner of Fedder’s Jewelry Store, noted the fishing opportunities in the Susquehanna River, which borders—and sometimes overpowers—the borough.
“I enjoy the river, even though it’s chased me out a few times,” he said with a wry grin. “But I still enjoy the river and everything it offers. When it’s behaving.”