The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

January 16, 2013

Union County officially kicks off its bicentennial celebration

By Evamarie Socha
The Daily Item

— LEWISBURG — It’s official: 2013 is a year to party in Union County as the commissioners passed a resolution commemorating the county’s bicentennial year at their meeting Tuesday.

The action also debuted the website — — for all things bicentennial, including an events calendar and eventual online store.

The bicentennial officially begins March 22, although planning has been under way for nearly five years, said Nada Gray, co-chairwoman of the bicentennial committee.

A banner now flies across Market Street at Eighth Street in Lewisburg to greet visitors, and custom-made souvenirs went on sale late last year, particularly at Mifflinburg’s annual Christkindl market and the Elias Church performing arts center opening.

Four members of the 22-person bicentennial committee took turns reading passages of the resolution, which commissioner Chairman Preston Boop made a motion to accept. Commissioners John Mathias and John Showers gave their approval.

The resolution was read by Gray; Lowell Leitzel, of the Snyder County Historical Society; Paul Mauger, of the Slifer House Museum; and Murrie Zoltziver, of the Mifflinburg Heritage & Revitalization Association.

The resolution reads like a mini history lesson on Union County, noting such facts as Union County was one of several spinoffs from Northumberland County in the 1800s and that the county’s population today is just 53 people shy of bumping it up to a sixth-class county.

Souvenir sales are brisk and generating funds for the nearly 60 events planned throughout 2013. Union County is contributing $5,000 for events, Showers said.

An online store selling a limited number of souvenirs should be up and running next week. Items also may be purchased at the Union County Government Center.

Also at the meeting:

-  The commissioners approved a professional services agreement with Contrast Communications, of Mifflinburg, for the county government’s phone system.

n Named to the county Board of Assessment Appeals were Bill Doyle, Jim Holtzapple and Scott Mertz, who was designated chairman.

- The commissioners approved a two-year, $47,284 grant award from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency for victim and witness services.