Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful volunteers have removed 105,568,375 pounds of trash from the commonwealth’s landscape. Approximately 150,000 volunteers participate annually, most in association with the Great American Cleanup, with events scheduled this year from March 1 through May 31. Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful offers cleanup resources including educational literature, safety videos, illegal dump surveys and technical assistance to those who want to help. Illegally dumped trash can cost up to $1,000 per ton to clean up.
Call (877) 772-3673 or visit gacofpa.org for more information on the following cleanup events already scheduled in the region or to register your own.
Upcoming cleanups include the Coal Street Playground in Glen Lyon on April 19, multiple events in Carbondale from April 23 to 24 and Nay Aug Park on April 25. Events are scheduled on Saturday, April 26 in Old Forge, the City of Wilkes-Barre, Shickshinny, the Avondale Mine Disaster Site and Moon Lake in Hunlock Township, Nicholson Borough, Starucca, Tobyhanna State Park and the North Branch of the Susquehanna River. South Scranton’s Elm Street district and the Lower Green Ridge neighborhood of Scranton, Jefferson Township, Clifford Township, D & H Rail Trail in Forest City and Lee Park in Hanover Township will all see efforts on May 3.
The Lackawanna River Corridor Association holds its annual pre-RiverFest clean up on May 15. The “River Clearing Run” needs volunteers with canoes/kayaks to paddle the Lackawanna River from points upstream down to Olive Street in Scranton to remove debris, take note of downed trees (chain saw), navigation problems, or other hindrances for future paddlers. The River Cleanup entails prepping Sweeney’s Beach, clearing both river banks and river of litter and debris, prepping the Canoe-A-Thon landing area and removing litter from the RiverFest site.
American Masters: A Fierce Green Fire explores 50 years of environmental grassroots and global activism and premieres nationwide on Earth Day, Tuesday, April 22 on PBS at 9 p.m.
“Connecting all the major aspects of environmentalism, the documentary chronicles the largest movement of the 20th century, and one of the keys to the 21st. From halting dams in the Grand Canyon to battling 20,000 tons of toxic waste at Love Canal; from Greenpeace saving the whales to Chico Mendes and the rubber tappers saving the Amazon; from climate change to the promise of transforming our civilization, the film tells vivid stories about people fighting and succeeding — against enormous odds.” It is narrated by Robert Redford, Ashley Judd, Van Jones, Isabel Allende and Meryl Streep, and is written and directed by Academy Award-nominee Mark Kitchell (pictured).
Additional Earth Day Events
Revived, April 22- May 5, Thursdays-Saturdays, noon-6 p.m. Group exhibition of artworks created from recycled and repurposed materials. The Vintage Theater, Scranton. scrantonsvintagetheater.com.
River Road Cleanup, April 26, 9-11:30 a.m. Visit the website to download a volunteer release prior to arriving for this 11th annual litter pick-up along River Road. The first 50 to register receive a T-shirt. All will receive safety gloves and vests. Also enjoy a continental breakfast at registration and a complimentary appreciation lunch at The Gem and Keystone brewpub. Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort, Shawnee-On-Delaware. (570) 424-4050.
Hiking the Endless Mountains, April 22, 7 p.m. A multimedia presentation by Jeff Mitchell will be offered in celebration of Earth Day. Mitchell is the author of books including “Hiking the Endless Mountains,” “Backpacking Pennsylvania,” “Hiking the Allegheny National Forest” and “Paddling Pennsylvania.” Hibbard Student Center, LaPlume. (570) 945-8000.
Earth Day Fair, April 22, 11 a.m. Find interactive games, presentations and information related to the environment and sustainable practices on the patio. Patrick and Margaret DeNaples Center, Scranton. (570) 941-7520 or scranton.edu.
Play Again: Earth Day movie screening, April 22, 6:30 p.m. The Moose Exchange and Bloomsburg University’s Green Campus Initiative invite the community to play outside at 6:30 before watching Play Again at 7 p.m. “One generation from now most people in the U.S. will have spent more time in the virtual world than in nature; new media technologies have improved our lives in countless ways; information now appears with a click; overseas friends are part of our daily lives; and even grandma loves Wii. But what are we missing when we are behind screens?” the event poses. St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, Bloomsburg. (570) 314-2596 or mooseexchange.org.
Water Our Most Precious Resource, April 22, 7:30 p.m. Lecture and panel discussion offered as part of The University of Scranton’s Earth Week 2014 and in conjunction with the Spring Sustainability Symposium. In the McIlhenny Ballroom on the fourth floor. Patrick and Margaret DeNaples Center, Scranton. Free. (570) 941-7400 or scranton.edu.
Reptile & Amphibian Survey Program, April 23, 6-8:30 p.m. With Biologist John Jose of the PARS Project. Learn about local animals, how to find and identify them and how to make a contribution to their conservation. Registration recommended. Lackawanna College Environmental Institute, Covington Township. $5. (570) 842-1506.
Everybody into the Vernal Pool, April 24, 6-9 p.m. John Jose from Ottercreek Environmental Education Services leads an evening search for frogs and salamanders. Learn how to safely handle the animals, tips on how to identify them and take photographs. Registration requested. Lackawanna State Park, Dalton. (570) 945-3239 or visitPAparks.com.
Spring Into Action Park Cleanup, April 26, 9 a.m.-noon. Registration required. Nescopeck State Park, Drums. Free. (570) 403-2006.
Earth Day Clean Up, April 26, 10 a.m.-noon. Volunteers are needed for shrub, flower and tree planting and for general park clean up. Meet at the park office. Gloves and bags will be provided. Frances Slocum State Park, Wyoming. (570) 696-9105 or email@example.com.
Earth Week Geocache CITO (Cache In Trash Out), April 26, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. This park clean up is organized in honor of Earth Week and in conjunction with The Great American Clean Up of PA. Registration requested. Bags, gloves and safety vests will be provided. Lackawanna State Park, Dalton. (570) 945-3239 or visitPAparks.com.
Earth Day Open House, April 26, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Bring your old and unwanted electronics for eco-friendly recycling. Also enjoy samples of organic, green and fair trade foods and listen to live music by Doreen Coleman from 1 to 3 p.m. Everything Natural, Clarks Summit. (570) 586-9684.
Guided Bird Walk, April 19, 8 a.m. Conservation volunteer Dave Kruel will lead a guided bird walk. Wear comfortable shoes and bring binoculars. Registration required. Nescopeck State Park, Drums. Free. (570) 403-2006.
Environmental Awareness 5 K Fun Run / Walk, April 26, 11 a.m. Registration begins at 10 a.m. The University of Scranton presents this race along the Lackawanna River as part of its Earth Week 2014 series of events. Lackawanna Heritage Trail, Scranton. Free. firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jim Thorpe Earth Day Festival, April 26, 10 a.m. Enjoy music and art in Josiah White Park, the Dimmick Memorial Library and the Mauch Chunk Opera House, a Lehigh River Cleanup, handmade and recycled crafts, hooping workshop, games, food and more at this event providing green information and promoting environmental awareness. Historic Jim Thorpe, Jim Thorpe. (570) 325-5810 or jimthorpe.org.
House & Garden Show, April 26, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. April 27, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Featuring professional home and garden vendors, gift items, children’s gardening workshop, fly fishing demonstrations and lessons, and a gourmet luncheon by Camelot serving soup, quiche, sandwiches, and salad. Waverly Community House, Waverly. (570) 586-8191.
Pike-Wayne Earth Day Festival 2014, April 26, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. This free, family-event focuses on celebrating natural resources and the people working to preserve, conserve and protect them. PPL Wallenpaupack Environmental Learning Center, Hawley. pikewayneearthday.wordpress.com.
Hawley Earth Fest, April 25-27. Three days of events in the Lake Region featuring discounts and music at participating restaurants in addition to cultural and educational programs. hawleyearthfest.com.
Friday, April 25
2 to 5 p.m. – Hawley Farmer’s Market Opens outside the Hawley Library. Vendors include a petting zoo, prepared foods, wild edibles instruction and a bow and arrow demonstration, Northern Lights Natural Foods prepackaged herbal tea blends for wellness and more.
6 to 9:30 p.m. – Not All Who Wander Are Lost: Photographs by Geoffrey Partridge at Roots Yoga Studio
Saturday, April 26
10 to 11 a.m. – Species Parade in Bingham Park. Register at the Senior Center at 9 a.m.
10 a.m. to 3 p.m. – Pike-Wayne Earth Day Festival at PPL
11 a.m. to 4 p.m. – Book readings, lectures, games and more at the Hawley Library.
1 to 5 p.m. – Yoga for Kids at Roots Yoga Studio. Kids will learn to connect to the natural world through their own bodies and breathe. Feel what it is like to be a tree while in tree pose, feel the power of a lions roar, blossom like a flower. Stop by with the kids for 5 minutes or 1 hour. Free. Parents are welcome to stay and participate.
2 to 6 p.m. – Block Party at The Belevedere Hotel
Sunday, April 27
8 to 9 a.m. – Nature Walk with Nathaniel Whitmore. Nathaniel teaches about botany, mycology, medical herbalism, plant and mushroom identification, foraging, and preparation of medicinal herbs. Meet by skateboard park in Bingham Park. Arrive 10 minutes early.
10 am – Tour De Towpath Bike Tour
10 am – Yoga in the Park with Roots Yoga with instructor Maggie Lehrian. Meet at the gazebo in Bingham Park. This class serves as an alternative to the usual 10 a.m. class held at Roots Yoga studio, weather permitting.
1 to 3 p.m. – Kids Yoga (ages 3-6) Earth Day Open House
3 to 5 p.m. – Kids Yoga (ages 7-10) Earth Day Open House. Kids will learn to connect to the natural world through their own bodies and breathe. Feel what it is like to be a tree while in tree pose, feel the power of a lions roar, blossom like a flower. Stop by with the kids for 5 minutes or 1 hour – these are free, open events! Parents are welcome to stay and participate.
3 to 4 p.m. – Green Cleaning: Northern Light Natural Foods (2591 Route 6 )presents a beginner’s guide to making your own non-toxic household cleaners with a handful of basic ingredients. Class will include information on some of the most common toxins found in conventional cleaning products, as well as a dozen or so ‘recipes’ for all areas of the house. (570) 226-5858.
The Presbypop Sextet features Al Hamme on saxophones, Michael Carbone on saxophones, Jeff Stockham on trumpet and French horn, Ron Vincent on drums, Joe Cole on bass, and pianist Bill Carter.
Eco Jazz Concert, April 27, 4 p.m. The Presbybob Jazz Sextet will perform a program of music in honor of Earth Day and the return of spring. A brand-new suite inspired by the Canadian Rockies titled “Beyond Banff” will be featured. First Presbyterian Church of Clarks Summit, Clarks Summit. (570) 586-6306 or fpccs.org.
Look, Behold, Observe
Twenty-three graduating students from Keystone College’s four-year art programs will display their works in two different galleries this month. Reception for both the ECCE shows at the AfA Gallery and ArtWorks Gallery & Studio on opposite sides of the 500 block of Lackawanna Avenue will be held in conjunction with First Friday Scranton on Friday, April 4 from 6 to 9 p.m. The exhibition is a graduation requirement for the students and features work in a variety of media. “Ecce,” informs a release for the show, is a Latin term meaning to look, behold, or observe.
Participating artists include: Justin Borsdam (sculpture), Brittany Cardona (graphic design), Sara Cortazar (painting), Melissa Cruise (painting), Christian English (graphic design), Marissa Gable (photography); Dustin Goff, (book/ceramics), Becca Jett, (sculpture) Jessica Johanson (sculpture), Jeremy M. Ladner (painting), Hannah M. Leizear, (glass), Ashley Malahosky (printmaking), Krystle Mauro (photography), Caitlin Mullally (ceramics), Christiana Nevers (sculpture), Trent Petriello, (sculpture), Samantha Petrosi (painting), Janelle Rought (book/photography), Reese Scott (drawing), Morgan Scudder (painting), Brian Toda (glass), Chelsy A. Zelasko and Caitlin Moran whose jewelry design “Artemis” is pictured above. Call (570) 945-8461 or send email to email@example.com for more information.
“Trainyard” by Mikhael Antone
Also opening just off Lackawanna in the Marquis Art & Frame building on Center Street is a new Camerawork Gallery show by photographer Mikhael Antone (bottom right). Titled “A Sense of Place” the collection focuses on spaces the artist recalls from childhood.
“I photograph them as I try to remember a different time and place. I explore that sense of identity and coming of age within a particular landscape. I look for the emotions in the landscape and explore how these spaces have become almost stuck in their own past,” Antone explains in a statement about the collection.
“When we are young we attach ourselves and become emotionally involved in these spaces. Places take on personality and identity. Memories get locked into these places even though they are of a different time… The landscapes portray the inner landscape of place in society: Old mills, churches, empty fields and forgotten landfills illicit an imaginary space of isolation and lost dreams. I focus on the landscape of “place” or hidden spaces, the spaces where one may wander or hide without organized identity or to escape an unwanted reality.”
A reception for A Sense of Place runs from 6 to 8:15 p.m. on Friday, April 4. The work will remain on display through April 29. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Visit cameraworkgallery.org for more information.
Crescent. Mikael Broth
Drawing on “the idea of disguise and obscurity created by security patterns printed inside financial and medical mail,” a collection of new work by Mickael Broth (top right) of Richmond, Va. opens on Saturday, April 5 from 6 to 9 p.m. at 527 Bogart Court, Scranton. “These new paintings focus on marginalized people; the scumbags that classy society pretends don’t exist. They are the smokers, the old, the ugly, the haggard. They come out when the moon is full. They take the weird photos that make normal squares wish they lived the scumbag life,” promotion on the gallery’s blog reads.
527 Bogart Court is an art gallery run by Jonathan and Leigh Slingluff, owners of The Slingluff Gallery of Philadelphia, bringing NEPA new artists to discover as well as spotlighting select local artists. For more info visit BogartCourt.com.
Painter Jeremy Ladner is photographed with his canvases in a promotional photo for ECCE
Artemis by Caitlin Moran, ECCE
Reflections by Melissa Cruise, ECCE
Folk art birds painted by local artists are on display at the Butternut Gallery in Montrose through May 10.
“Trainyard” by Mikhael Antone
Crescent. Mikael Broth
Cave, Mickael Broth
The Vagina Monologues Returns to The Vintage on April 10.
Even if Eve Ensler’s script didn’t draw attention to the awkward, confusing, delusional and degrading names we call the female sex organs, the conversation was bound to happen.
Does anyone like the word vagina? The way it sounds, the way your mouth moves like you’re growling around the syllables? Who decided to adapt the Latin word for “scabbard” and apply it to women’s bodies, anyway? You know it was some man because women would have come up with something much more melodic or spicier. Vanilla, for example, which shares the same root origin, sounds much nicer. Why didn’t we get that?
Playwright and activist Eve Ensler
For those of you who haven’t seen one of the many benefit productions of The Vagina Monlogues staged in The 570 since it debuted in Scranton in 2002, Ensler uses “vagina” to refer to the whole kit and caboodle. It makes sense, as it is this view of women’s bodies as something to be used by men (a vessel by which to sheath their swords) that breeds violence. It is not the external vulva and clitoris that inspires rape — this is of little interest to the abusive, as sexual violence is not about pleasure, it is about subjugation, domination, and destruction.
While it’s gotten a lot easier to say ‘The Vagina Monologues’ in casual conversation, I sometimes still notice a slight flutter of embarrassment when faced with someone new to the play who might not understand how crucial women’s shame about their bodies is to the epidemic. Language is more than what we call things. It is more than a tool we use to communicate. It is how we think. And it is how we think about ourselves and each other.
The brave act of calling her 1994 play The Vagina Monologues draws attention to these words that define us. Based on interviews the playwright conducted with real, diverse women, the work ran off-Broadway and then went on tour before birthing the 501(c)(3) non profit V-Day in 1998, which celebrated its 15th anniversary last year. Ensler allows her work to be produced for no royalty at the grassroots level with the stipulation the proceeds be donated to qualifying organizations working to end violence against women and girls in their communities. In Scranton, that’s the Women’s Resource Center.
If you’ve seen the show before, you’ll recognize the often funny, sometimes heartbreaking, always poignant words those women shared with her. This year, two new pieces will be introduced, one of which Ensler wrote (finally, after all these years!) about the incestuous abuse she suffered at the hands of her own father. Notably, it is less about the abuse than her coming to terms with that.
I was happy to accept the honor of sharing this new monologue with Scranton at The Vintage Theater next Thursday, April 10. I didn’t really know my father (after saying goodbye as a small child I would not meet him again until I was 17), but I am well acquainted with shame and how we are taught to turn the anger in on ourselves, and the inevitable self-destruction that follows.
Ensler’s poetry is astonishingly free from judgement and hatred, and it is drenched in the power of art. Her genius lies in trusting that if we can change the way we feel about the words, and if we can change the secret meaning of those words, we can change the way we act in the world and interact with others.
Visit www.vday.org for more information or email firstname.lastname@example.org for tickets ($15).
Community Concerts presents Nebraska Theatre Caravan’s The Fantasticks
Before it embraced its nickname as the Electric City, Scranton built its reputation on iron, steel and the T-rails that supported America’s steam powered railroads.
Largely-inspired by a Victorian literature pre-electronic fantasy of a future lived beyond socially constraining norms, steampunk celebrates the ephemeral magic of science and mysteries of a nostalgically impossible time when faraway lands and transporting inventions might still be discovered. It looks like gaslight, gears and lenses, tea and absinthe, hot air balloons, walking sticks, parasols, pocket watches and gramophones, handlebar mustaches, aviator/laboratory goggles, hats and gloves, lace and leather, corsets and elaborately pocketed coats designed for wild adventures.
While steampunk’s pre-digital aesthetic has been widely commodified in the last five years, the punk in steampunk comes from its DIY foundation. When all the tattooed, exposed skin, torn clothing, grafittied, stolen, big-and tall-and-long-and neon-haired badges of counter culture can be purchased in the passe malls of American consumerism, what is a self-respecting rebel to do?
Community Concerts at Lackawanna College brings steampunk to Steamtown this weekend with a one night-only presentation of Nebraska Theatre Caravan’s production of The Fantasticks on Saturday, March 29 at 7 p.m.
Loosely based on Edmond Rostand’s play Les Romanesques, The Fantasticks features music by Harvey Schmidt with book and lyrics by Tom Jones. The allegorical love story opened off-Broadway in 1960 and went on to become known as “the world’s longest running musical.” Popular songs include “Try to Remember,” and “Soon It’s Gonna Rain.” It finds two neighboring friends — one the father to a boy and the other to a girl — who desire their children to marry when they grow up. In an act of reverse psychology, they pretend to fight and build a wall between their homes in hopes the children will not be able to resist the forbidden.
The manipulative (but loving) fathers later stage an abduction of the girl, knowing the boy will be compelled to rescue her. Supporting characters include The Narrator, El Gallo, who helps orchestrate the story, an aging commedia clown named Henry who is fond of quoting Shakespeare and his sidekick Mortimer who specializes in stage death, and a pantomimed stage hand The Mute.
“Steampunk seems to lend itself to this story by finding beauty among the broken pieces,” director Carl Beck said in regard to the Nebraska Theatre Caravan’s choice to give classic American musical The Fantasticks a steampunk makeover. The touring production plays one-night-only at The Theater at Lackawanna College via Community Concerts on Saturday, March 29 at 7 p.m. Tickets range from $30 to $40. Call (570) 955-1455.
It’s a Lifestyle: Steampunk Resources
The Steampunk World’s Fair
May 16-18: Piscataway, NJ. Acts include Steam Powered Giraffe, The Men That Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing, Eli August & The Abandoned Buildings, Ink & Paint Club Burlesque. Also meet author/actor Leanne Renee Hieber, artist Abigail Larson (abigaillarson.com), or attend a Steampunk Science Theatre Dinne. steampunkworldsfair.com.
Clockwork Couture: clockworkcouture.com
Steampunk Emporium at Gentleman’s Emporium: steampunkemporium.com
Steamed! Writing Steampunk Fiction: ageofsteam.wordpress.com
SteamPunk Magazine: steampunkmagazine.com
Cherie Priest (cheriepriest.com): author of steampunk pulp adventures Dreadnought, Clementine, Ganymede, and Boneshaker.
The Steampunk Bible: An Illustrated Guide to the World of Imaginary Airships, Corsets and Goggles, Mad Scientists, and Strange Literature by Jeff VanderMeer
Abney Park (abneypark.com): Band of steampunk pirates led by Captain Robert Brown, also author of The Wrath of Fate.
AEther Emporium: a steampunk wiki with links to steampunk resources and archives
Connect via @AetherEmpoorium on Twitter or etheremporium.pbworks.com/w/page/10454263/Wiki.
Before the students in Janine Baux’s advanced modern class began to rehearse “Trapped,” the teacher reminded them “to be in character” thinking about the emotions behind the work and not just their dance steps.
“It doesn’t have to be pretty,” she told them before they went into the piece a second time. “Not so ballet.”
The flailing, desperate, crawling, fist-shaking choreography requires the classically trained dancers to stretch their movements out to fill the music.
“Don’t just get there and wait,” she instructed. “The biggest problem right now is timing.”
Now in her third season at The Dance Studio, Baux’s trigger to create the piece was the prospect of audience seated on three sides of the performers instead of just out in front as in a traditional proscenium theater space.
Dancers from The Dance Studio at the Ballet Theatre of Scranton’s modern dance company will present Evolutions in Shopland Hall on the fourth floor of the Scranton Cultural Center on Friday, March 21 at 7:30 p.m.
“You can take (the meaning of “Trapped”) whatever way you want. You can take it as literally being trapped inside of a box or it could be more figurative,” said Baux. “You can think of it as being trapped inside of a job you don’t that you don’t want or a relationship you are unhappy with the audience has the freedom to take it which ever way that they want it.”
The dance is one of two pieces Baux choreographed for the show. The second is a piece titled “Loneliness,” set to “Eleanor Rigby” by The Beatles. Other pieces in the program will be performed by returning alumni who are currently continuing their dance education or completing advanced degrees outside the region.
Tickets are $10. Call (570) 347-0208 or visit balletheatre.com for more information.
Photos by Tom Bonomo