The Scoop

Editor Julie Imel dishes the news you need to know


Chillin’ in Clarks Summit

It’s hard to believe that it’s been eight years since our friends at the Clarks Summit Festival of Ice first started hosting this lovely event, but here we are, getting ready to celebrate another year of icy art in downtown Clarks Summit. The festival runs from Feb. 16 through 20, and continues to grow.

In keeping with this year’s “Frozen Games” theme, Mark Crouthamel and the team from Sculpted Ice Works (read more about Crouthamel in this week’s Up Close & Personal) have added a special twist – or perhaps we should say a little spark – to parade festivities. Look for an icy torch that will light up the sky with a little flame (we don’t know how they’re mixing fire and ice, but they are!) and there may also be a famous grand marshall of the parade, actor Bronson Pinchot. We won’t know until the parade steps off if Pinchot will in fact be leading the parade, so be sure to get a spot in line early to see for yourself. Featuring ice carvings, juggling and plenty of local performers, the parade kicks off on State Street at 7 p.m. on Thursday.

Throughout the weekend, there will be interactive activities for the whole family, a great line-up of music and live entertainment, prizes and giveaways in addition to the event’s main attraction: watching the ice sculptures come to life. For more information and a complete schedule of events, visit

Star-studded Saturday

If you’re a fan of The Sopranos, you’ll want to be in Luzerne County on Saturday. That’s right – The Sopranos cast members Vincent Pastore, Joe Gannascoli and Tony Darrow will sign autographs on Feb. 18 from 3 to 4 p.m. at the NEPA Golf Expo at the Kingston Armory. Admission is open to anyone who purchases a ticket to the expo, which costs $5. (Golf enthusiasts should also make note that the expo features more than 50 booths as well as food and fun. The expo will be held Feb. 18 and 19).

The star-studded fun doesn’t end with the expo. On Saturday night, this famous trio, a.k.a. “The FoodFellas,” will dine at Buca Del Vino & Ash, Pittston. You’re invited to join them for an authentic Italian dinner and meet the stars for pictures and autographs. Buca Del Vino & Ash is located at 1901 Highway 315 in Pittston (the former Mayfair Supper Club). The event starts at 7 p.m. Tickets are $50 and are available at Buca Del Vino & Ash or at the NEPA Golf Expo.

A puzzling dilemma

Have you noticed that our puzzle page has been missing lately? No, it’s not a production error. We left the puzzles out intentionally to see if anyone would miss them. As we examine ways to improve electric city and diamond city, we’ve been debating whether or not to continue running the puzzle page. We wonder if perhaps our readership would be better served if we used that space for something else. Our editorial staff is split on this one, and we really need your help. If you have an opinion, please share it with us. Send emails to, with your vote to keep, or kill, the puzzle page.

‘Ohm’ on the range

We got a text from Rude Rube, who is out in the desert, communing with nature and seasoned yogis. Since Rube is relaxing out west, there is no Barbed Wire column this week. Who knows when, or even if, our gossip guru will return. We are concerned our beloved Rube is drinking far too much cactus juice and losing all sense of time and obligation. We’ll keep you posted as to when, if ever, the Limo of Love will roar back into The 570. To be continued…

That’s the scoop! Thanks for reading and I’ll meet you here again next week.

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