DANVILLE —The Sisters of Saints Cyril and Methodius are looking at possibly selling some property or entering a long-term partnership to better serve the community, the order's general superior said on Wednesday.
Brent Fish of Fish Real Estate, Williamsport, told Danville Borough Council on Tuesday night, "The sisters are looking for solutions, a long-term partnership, a sale. They are very open to any ideas."
Fish said his agency and another firm, which he didn't name, are representing the order of nuns in helping to explore ideas. He said he came to the meeting to update borough officials because part of the order's property is in Danville, while other land is in Mahoning Township.
Fish left the meeting after his presentation. He could not be reached for comment on Wednesday.
Sister Michael Ann Orlik, general superior of the Sisters of Saints Cyril and Methodius, said the order has no specific plan right now, but she said the sisters are not leaving Danville.
"We have been in Danville a very long time, over 100 years," Orlik said. "We are looking at our future and the future of Danville. We are looking at partnering. We're looking at how better we can serve the community. We are looking at what possibilities there are."
The order's main campus houses a basilica and chapel, pre-school and kindergarten, Saint Cyril Spiritual Center & Retreats, and Maria Hall at Villa Sacred Heart for the care of elder sisters of the religious order and other religious communities. The sisters also sponsor, in Mahoning Township, Maria Joseph Continuing Care Community nursing home and assisted living. That includes The Meadows Independent Living, The Manor Personal Care, Nazareth Memory Center Personal Care and Emmanuel Center for Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation.
Danville historian Helen "Sis" Hause, an alumna of the former St. Cyril Academy all-girls boarding school that closed in 1999, said the sisters own land behind those township facilities, as well.
"Knowing the sisters and what all they've done for the community, during this difficult time I'm sure they're interested in finding other ways to help, even if it means selling property."
Green Thumb, truck fund growing
In other business at the meeting, council members approved the borough planning commission's recommendation to allow Green Thumb Inc., the medical marijuana grower at East Market and Railroad streets, to add an approximately 47,000-square-foot addition to the northwest corner of the building without adding truck traffic.
Fire Chief John Buckenberger told the council in his report that Geisinger agreed to donate $250,000 to the Friendship Fire Company's ladder truck fund.
"That's a real boost," the chief said.
Buckenberger said the department is running an aggressive campaign, seeking donations from businesses, agencies and local municipalities to purchase the $1.4 million truck.
He said the fire company would receive a $50,000 reduction in price if it orders the truck this year.
Council also accepted a gift of a new playground equipment for the play area at F.Q. Hartman Recreation Area. Bob Stoudt, director of the Montour Area Recreation Commission (MARC), told council members that St. Joseph School gifted the play set to MARC because the school was getting a newer, larger set.
Stoudt said Danville and Riverside were interested in the play set. Representatives of the boroughs drew straws and Danville won. He said MARC has already dissembled and removed the play set from the school and has it in storage.