The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

October 7, 2012

Cheers and jeers

Daily Item

---- — Cheers: To the teen volunteers who man the snack bar, design promotional posters, organize theme nights and otherwise keep the entire program going at the Jungle Teen Center in Milton. The Jungle is open from 7 to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and gets about 50 visitors each weekend. "You can come play Xbox, watch TV and there's always plenty of music," said teen committee member Ariel Morris. She notes that the teens are doing much more than just hanging out. They are running the business side of the operation and learning how to budget and organize events. The center was recently selected to be part of the Leadership Susquehanna Valley's nonprofit program, which will help develop more programs and apply for grants. These young people are doing great work for themselves, and they have earned all of the community support they are now receiving.

Cheers: To Jessica Charles, of Lewisburg, who is starting a group for siblings grieving for their loved ones lost in military service. Jessica lost her brother, Joshua Harton, an Army corporal from Bethlehem who was killed in action in Afghanistan two years ago. She also plans to raise awareness for Blue Star Mothers, a support group for those who have children on active duty, and Gold Star Mothers, a World War I-era organization that recognizes those who have lost a loved one during service. Last week, Jessica was among those gathering for the lighting of nearly 600 luminaries in Herndon at the American Legion post.

Cheers: To Commonwealth Court Judge Robert Simpson for his prudent decision to grant a preliminary injunction, postponing implementation of the state's voter ID law until after the Nov. 6 presidential election. The presidential election year is the wrong time to be fiddling with a system that could have disenfranchised more than 700,000 voters who still don't have proper identification, according to recent estimates. There will be plenty of time for further debate and review of the law after all voters have the opportunity to cast their ballots in this important election.

Cheers: To Trevorton Elementary sixth-grader Jessie Morgan, who won the recent fiddle contest at the Bloomsburg Fair. Jessie admitted she had a few butterflies in her stomach as she took the stage, but about halfway through her second number, "Danny Boy," she realized that the crowd was loving her and her music. "Then I was all smiles," she said after being named the winner. "Even now, I can't stop smiling." Jessie made all of us smile as well. Congratulations.