JANUARY 

Jan. 2 — The Greencastle-Antrim High School student council sponsored a holiday food drive to help stock the shelves of the Greencastle Food Pantry. A total of 977 canned goods were donated.

Jan. 4 — What goes up, must come down.

Temperatures that peaked near 60 degrees on Dec. 19 will bottom out this weekend with the wind making it feel like 20 to 30 degrees below zero.

It's been down hill ever since the warm wave from Dec. 16 to 23, which saw a high of 59 degrees on Dec. 19, according to Greencastle weather observer Robert Wertime.

Jan. 9 — Two panels from the Greencastle-Antrim Veterans Memorial will be removed from outside Greencastle Borough Hall and sent to Ohio to be restored after being spray-painted by vandals last summer.

A $2 can of spray-paint caused about $10,000 in damage in August with nasty graffiti aimed at police, according to Eden Ratliff, borough manager. The borough will pay the $1,000 deductible and insurance will cover the remaining $8,758.

Volunteers have tried to remove the paint, part of a spree that targeted a number of buildings around town, but blue paint is still visible on the half of the memorial that honors veterans from the Revolutionary War to World War II.

Jan. 11 — Kim Muller and Megan Barkdoll are Greencastle-Antrim Middle School wellness teachers who share an office that’s not much bigger than a table in the Greencastle-Antrim High School library where they led a meeting of Greencastle Relay for Life Team captains Tuesday evening.

Muller and Barkdoll are the new co-captains of the annual American Cancer Society fundraiser, which will be held Friday and Saturday, May 18 and 19, on the Greencastle-Antrim School District’s Kaley Field.

Last year’s event had more than 500 participants and raised over $170,000.

The 2018 Relay for Life has the Star Wars theme “May the Cure Be With You.”

Jan. 16 — Harold Martin “Marty” Zimmerman III of Greencastle was halfway through his master’s degree program in applied history at Shippensburg University when his life was interrupted by a hemorrhagic stroke at age 25 on March 17, 2013.

On Dec. 15, 2017, the young stroke survivor not only received his degree but gave the student address at SU’s graduate school commencement.

The son of Marcie and H. Martin “Marty” Zimmerman Jr. of Greencastle, he used his life-threatening and life-altering experience and subsequent journey as a springboard for his message to his fellow 80-some graduates.

Jan. 18 — The Greencastle-Antrim School District is in the midst of creating a comprehensive plan to guide its course over the next six years.

“This is to help with goals. It’s general, not specific,” said Dr. Kendra Trail, superintendent, who also explained the plan will remain a fluid document even after it is adopted and will not just sit on a shelf for the next six years.

The comprehensive plan is required by the Pennsylvania Department of Education and a committee has been working since last October on the document which is due by this November.

Jan. 23 — State Rep. Judy Ward, a Republican from Blair County, is the first candidate to come forward to fill the 30th District seat of state Sen. John Eichelberger Jr., who is running for the U.S. House of Representatives seat being vacated by Bill Shuster.

The 30th District covers western Franklin County — including the boroughs of Greencastle and Mercersburg and Antrim, Fannett, Metal, Montgomery, Peters, St. Thomas and Warren townships — as well as all of Blair and Fulton counties and parts of Huntingdon and Cumberland counties.

Ward attended Thursday’s Greencastle-Antrim Chamber of Commerce breakfast with state Rep. Paul Schemel, a Republican whose district includes Greencastle and Antrim Township. Ward said she and Schemel entered the Legislature together, often sit together and share similar views.

Jan. 25 — Del Martin started his screen printing business in 1979 out of his home near Chambersburg. In 1988, he rented a 20-by-50-foot space in the lower level of a strip mall on South Antrim Way, in 1989 he quit his teaching job and Brad Eby became the first full-time employee of Del Martin Screen Printing in 1990.

On Jan. 30, Eby will become sole owner of Del Martin Inc., a screen printing and embroidery business that moved to a custom-built 12,000-square-foot building along U.S. 11 south of Greencastle at Sarah Susan Lane in 1999 and now employs 20 people.

They’ve been planning the sale for a long time, according to Martin, who will continue at the business with reduced hours for the next two years.

Jan. 30 — The clothing bank Grace’s Closet will open Friday, Feb. 2, in the second floor Sunday School rooms of Grace United Church of Christ, 128 E. Baltimore St. in Greencastle.

The clothing bank is Nancy L. Myers’ project and she took it to the consistory for approval earlier this month.

“It’s to help those in need. It bothers me,” Myers said, tearing up for the first time during an interview, “that people out there have nothing. I have clothes at home I don’t wear so why shouldn’t someone else.”

 FEBRUARY 

Feb. 1 — New, local owners took over Greencastle Golf Club and Fireside Pub on Jan. 1 and are already receiving enthusiastic support from the community.

They recently compiled a three-page list of mainly cosmetic changes to the 18-hole championship course set on 212 acres that opened in 1992, but the clubhouse is in line for a major overhaul.

Ron Powers is a retired educator and his wife, Beth, a Greencastle-Antrim Middle School teacher, is retiring this year. About a year and a half ago, they got the idea that owning the course, where their son, Ben, is the golf pro, would be a neat project.

Although it was not for sale, they approached the owner, but were too far apart on the price. That gap closed last summer and they decided they needed partners, bringing in friends and fellow Greencastle residents Dave and Jen Swam. He is in sales, with his own business representing kitchen cabinet manufacturers, and she teaches second-grade in Hagerstown.

Feb. 6 — Two employees were killed and three others hurt — one seriously — in a Friday morning crane accident the Manitowoc facility in Shady Grove.

Christopher T. Robison, 49, of Marion and John L. Marcoux, 66, of Chambersburg died from injuries suffered in the industrial accident, according to Franklin County Coroner Jeffrey R. Conner.

Isaac Notz, 38, of Manitowoc, Wisconsin, is still listed in critical condition at York Hospital, where he was flown after the accident that was reported at 8:14 a.m., according to a news release from Pennsylvania State Police.

Ryan Horst, 27, of Greencastle and Gary Chaloupka, 66, of Two Rivers, Wisconsin,

have both been released from Waynesboro Hospital, police report.

Feb. 8 — The Greencastle-Antrim Education Association has set a strike date of April 4 if a tentative contract is not reached by then.

Members of the teachers union gave the strike authorization in December and the negotiating team announced the date after another round of unproductive bargaining talks with the school district Monday night, according to a news release from the Pennsylvania State Education Association.

“We hope to be able to reach a tentative agreement before a strike actually occurs,” Ellen Kirkner, president of the 181-member G-AEA and high school social studies teacher, said in the press release. “As educators, we are proud of our school district and we care very much about our students. If the Greencastle-Antrim School District wants to maintain its reputation for providing a quality education to the community’s children and retaining highly effective professional staff, the district needs to continue to invest in its educators.”

Feb. 13 — A McConnellsburg woman has announced she is running for the 30th District Pennsylvania Senate seat being vacated by John Eichelberger Jr.

Emily Best, 34, a Democrat, is a working mom and farm advocate, according to a campaign news release.

She is the second candidate to come forward. State Rep. Judy Ward, a Republican from Blair County, announced her candidacy in January. Eichelberger is running for the 9th Congressional District seat currently held by U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster, who is not seeking re-election.

Feb. 15 — A third man has died as a result of an accident at the Manitowoc Crane Manufacturing Plant in Shady Grove earlier this month.

Isaac Dean Notz, 38, of Manitowoc, Wisconsin, died Saturday, Feb. 10, at York Hospital due to blunt force trauma suffered in the Feb. 2 crane accident, according to Franklin County Coroner Jeff Conner. Notz was airlifted from the scene and listed in critical condition for more than a week.

Christopher T. Robison, 49, of Marion, and John L. Marcoux, 66, of Chambersburg, were pronounced dead at the scene.

Feb. 20 — The Greencastle-Antrim Chamber of Commerce wanted to show a little love to its members in honor of Valentine's Day.

On Feb. 15, the chamber hosted a breakfast program with Randy Scott, owner and operator of Chick-fil-A in Hagerstown, who spoke on "The Heart of Leadership."

The corporate purpose is: "To glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us and to have a positive influence on all who come into contact with Chick-fil-A.”

Feb. 22 — When Tracy Whitmoyer started Growing With Music in 2013, her goal was to be located on Center Square in Greencastle.

That goal is growing closer and next week Growing With Music and Off-Center Properties, which purchased the historic properties on the northwest corner of the square from BB&T last year, will host an Evening of Wine & Music fundraiser.

Feb. 27 — Vicki Rhodes remembers her daughter, Teri, as "very intelligent, very witty and one of my best friends."

Teri Rhodes died of a drug overdose on Dec. 11, 2015, one day after her 41st birthday.

On Tuesday, March 6, as part of a national observance, Vicki Rhodes will place black balloons around the squares in Greencastle and Mercersburg.

Some balloons will say "Teri L. Rhodes, 1974-2015" and others will say "Overdose Awareness."

 MARCH 

March 1 — A Greencastle-Antrim High School student has been arrested and charged through the Franklin County Juvenile Probation Department with a threat reported last week.

The juvenile petition against the male student is for one count of making terroristic threats as a result of the incident.

The student verbalized the threat of "a crime of violence" to other students, according to Greencastle Police Chief John Phillippy.

March 6 — The Greencastle-Antrim School Board approved a contract for more than $350,000 with McClure Co. to improve the security of school entrances at Thursday night's meeting.

Looking at security upgrades in the district predates last month's deadly school shooting in Parkland, Florida, and discussion last week included philosophical as well as practical matters.

Mark Gallick of McClure Co., the company that has overseen district projects for a number of years, said the idea is to control the flow of the general public into school buildings, requiring them to have interaction with the staff before being buzzed into a secure area outside an office.

Some measures already exist, but this is a "more robust, rigid and strong system," Gallick said. It adds "a layer where they have to be allowed into the space."

March 8 — Greencastle Borough Council voted 5-2 Monday night to terminate the police department K-9 program.

The vote came more than two months later than council originally planned to make a decision on the future of the program due to cost concerns. The December vote was put on hold following the death of the department's K-9, Rony, who was hit by a car and killed while off duty.

The final decision Monday followed a report by Mayor Ben Thomas Jr. on his plan to reinvent the K-9 program; a recommendation from the public safety committee to keep the program; a recommendation from the administration and finance committee to suspend it and sell the assets, such as the customized vehicle; comments from the public; and a failed motion that would have put the program on hold indefinitely.

March 13 — Perspective, numbers and how to talk to kids about a teachers strike were the main topics at a coffee klatch hosted by the Greencastle-Antrim Education Association last week.

It was the latest in a series of teacher talks presented by the teachers union as part of the ongoing contract negotiations. The 181-member union is working under terms of a contract that expired Aug. 31, 2017, and has set a strike date of April 4 if an agreement is not reached. The teachers have voted twice to accept the recommendations of a fact-finders report, while the school board has twice rejected them.

About 40 people attended the meeting, including parents, other community members, support staff and teachers.

March 15 — A new chapter begins in the preservation of the history of the Greencastle-Antrim area on Saturday when Jason A. Green officially begins his job as executive director of Allison-Antrim Museum.

"Green was born and raised in Greencastle-Antrim, has an interest in the history of our community and graduated from Shippensburg University in 2003 with a bachelor’s degree in communications/journalism – electronic media," according to a news release from Bonnie Shockey, who will continue as president and CEO.

The step comes almost 20 years after the April 1998 purchase of the property at 365 S. Ridge Ave. The museum opened on Aug. 1, 1998, the first day of Old Home Week.

March 20 — The thousands of drivers a day who travel Route 16 west of Greencastle will see work to replace the bridge over the east branch of the Conococheague Creek start next week, weather permitting. The nearly $2.3 million project is scheduled to be finished before the end of October.

More than 11,800 vehicles cross the bridge daily and drivers have been diverted away from the center of the bridge since structural problems were found in December 2016.

On Thursday, March 29, the contractor is scheduled to activate temporary traffic signals and set a barrier that will restrict traffic to a single 11-foot-wide lane on the bridge as demolition of the superstructure begins, according to a news release from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation.

March 22 — Mother Nature confirmed the prognostication of the state's most beloved groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil: Despite Tuesday's arrival of spring, there was more winter to be had.

Nor'easter Toby dumped snow across Franklin County for the better part of two days.

Snow that began to fall during the morning hours Tuesday resulted in crashes and road closures across Franklin County as well as early dismissals for local school districts.

March 27 — Pennsylvania State Police Thursday announced the arrest of two Greencastle residents and a Fayetteville man in the drug death of a 3-year-old Greencastle girl.

Logan Starliper was found dead in her bed in a home on West Baltimore Street on Jan. 6. She had discoloration around her mouth, eyes and cheeks.

Brittany N. Higgins, 29, the child's mother, and Brian P. Bennett, 29, both of Greencastle, were charged with third degree murder, drug delivery resulting in death, involuntary manslaughter, two counts of endangering the welfare of children and violating the Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act.

Rodney A. Mower, 43, of Fayetteville was charged with drug delivery resulting in death.

"The death of this sweet, innocent little girl is the most heartbreaking example of the danger the overdose epidemic has brought to our community and region," said Franklin County District Attorney Matthew Fogal. "We will avenge her and will not rest or tire in working to prevent this from happening to others."

March 29 — An agreement has not been reached, but the Greencastle-Antrim School District superintendent is indicating "a level of positive movement" in contract talks between the school board and the Greencastle-Antrim Education Association at Monday night's negotiating session.

Another round of talks is planned Monday, April 2, just before the teachers are scheduled to strike on Wednesday, April 4.

"While I remain hopeful, that this positive movement will continue, I also believe it is important to keep you informed," Dr. Kendra Trail wrote in a letter sent to parents Tuesday afternoon.

It updates parents on the strike notification process as students head into Easter break.