Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Wednesday's wisdom

When I wrote for the COLUMBIA LEDGER, one of my duties was writing a weekly editorial giving the paper's thoughts on what is going on in the community. Sometimes I wrote a weekly editorial column as well, with my views on activities and people.
I've done it from time to time on this venue as well. Lately I feel as though I could do an editorial every day or twice a day because there is so much going on in our town.
So, do I feel that Columbia residents are getting their biggest bang for its buck in terms of how borough is run? No. Does it have to change? Yes. Will it change? I hope so.
I, like others are not keen on how our council meetings are being run. I know there are council members who feel the same way, but, they are in the minority when it comes to make change. We have some "dead weight" on council and perhaps in the best interest of our borough, they should resign but they won't. I think the council members who want to make changes need to speak up.
When I got home last night, I had word on the resignation of Brian Long as market manager and Brad Brubaker as Columbia softball coach.
What I was told about Long's resignation  is most likely being discussed tonight at council's personnel committee meeting. What I don't like is how it came down and if a council member was behind this, this person overstepped her bounds by not going to management first and is not acting in the best interests of Columbia or council and is still holding a grudge about getting fired from the position.
This is the same person involved with the rumors of a second market opening down town.
Does it sound like this council member is working in the best interests of Columbia? No and this person should either resign or be removed from council by council for this latest action. Will this happen? Probably not. Should it happen? Yes!
As far as the vote on moving the River Park baptism, I knew back in June, this one was going to comeback and haunt council. It did and it shouldn't have taken a rocket scientist to figure out why. It's a shame, this had to happen and probably won't long be forgotten.
And finally, like many I was very apprehensive about if the Turkey Hill Experience would ever become a reality. Today, the process of developing the Turkey Hill Experience started and hopefully will work for the betterment of Columbia.
Yes, it was a big day for our town and I hope between now and the opening of the facility next year, a solid plan, as Bill Roberts said today, is developed to get people from point A to point B. If that doesn't happen, it won't work, but let's give it a try.

Monday's meeting is a go

COLUMBIA TALK will host a town meeting on Monday night, Aug. 2 at 6:30 p.m. under the big pavilion at Glatfleter Field. (RAIN OR SHINE)
Come with ideas with a vision for the future of Columbia Borough. Ideas that can be presented to our borough leaders.
COLUMBIA TALK have been reading the many comments posted on this site and have an idea of what needs to be done. Sure, there will be some complaining about issues, but if we all work together, with one goal in mind, our entire community, we can make things better.
We have a proud town of around 10,000 people and we need to draw on our pride and our sense of community to do that. COLUMBIA TALK isn't looking for single agenda people or one issue people to help, we have to work together in what is the best interest of the community. If we have to start small, let's do it. We will not form a vigilante group, which has been suggested because that won't get things done. Working together will.
Also, someone has suggested inviting members of the council and school board. They read COLUMBIA TALK and shouldn't need a special invitation if they want to be there.
I'm looking at more suggestions as to what to talk about, but here are a few -- how to run for office, what is needed to run for office, borough council, code enforcement, borough projects and how to make officials become accountable.
If you can't be there and have questions or concerns, let me know and it can be discussed.

Turkey Hill returning to its roots

Some 75 years ago, Turkey Hill Dairy got a small start by delivering milk here in Columbia.
Now, the fourth largest ice cream maker and largest ice tea maker in the United States is returning to its roots.
Welcome to the Turkey Hill Experience, an interactive museum, being built in Columbia at Third and Linden streets.
Around 100 people gathered at the site of the $11 plus million project for the kickoff for construction. The Turkey Hill Experience is expected to be completed in April of next year.
Quentin Frey is the president of Turkey Hill Dairy. They have invested $6 million to the project.
"This is a momentous time for our company and for Columbia," said Frey. "This is the beginning of an exciting times for all of us and will lead to the revitalization of the area and promote tourism."
"This is a very exciting day for Turkey Hill Dairy, a very exciting day for the borough of Columbia, Lancaster County and the state of Pennsylvania," said John Cox, also of Turkey Hill Dairy.
"This day seemed to be slow in coming but with vision, persistence and cooperation helped clear all the obstacles," Cox said.
Cox said between 40 and 50 jobs will be created and its expected more than 250,000 people will visit the attraction yearly.
"Some said this would never happen. This is evidence that we can put to rest that it is going to happen," said Columbia Mayor Leo Lutz.
"This proves purchasing the property was the right decision for the borough," Lutz said.
He thanked a number of people from county and state officials along with borough officials including former councilmen John Collier, who fought for the purchase of the property by Columbia about five years ago.
"This was a gateway for Columbia and it wasn't a good site or a good welcome. We making it a good welcome and gateway to Columbia and Lancaster County," Lutz said.
"We are looking for this project to be the keynote part of the economic revitalization of Columbia," Lutz said.
Jeff Seibert represented the Columbia Economic Development Corporation, who helped broker the deal between the borough and Museum Partners, developer of the site.
"We are here today to celebrate progress and to celebrate the working together for the betterment of all of us," Seibert said.
"Turkey Hill stayed the course on this site when other sites were more attractive," Seibert said.
"In eight months we will have a world class facility that Turkey Hill and Columbia can be proud of," Seibert said. "Columbia Borough has the opportunity to share in the success of this project."
Bill Roberts is president of Museum Partners.
"Without the support of Turkey Hill, this project would be a not be possible," Roberts said.

A Saturday event

Softball coach cites family

It was a record setting year for the Columbia girls' softball team in 2010.
They had their first winning season, qualified for the district playoffs for the first time in school history and won a playoff game.
The architect of the success was first-year coach Brad Brubaker.
Brubaker stunned his team last night when he announced he was leaving the program after one season to become head coach at Section 4 rival Lancaster Mennonite. He told CHS Athletic Director Jim Rhoads on Monday. Brubaker told his team after a summer league game ar Garrett Park in Willow Street.
"I was presented with a situation that I felt I needed to act on as a father. Dean Weiant, Lancaster Mennonite's coach for the past four years was left go about three weeks ago. My daughter Madison, who is heading into her sophomore year, plays at LMH. They have been terrible. They were the only team not to win at least one game in 2010 and have lost 19 straight dating back two years," Brubaker said this morning.

"To the point, Madison asked me to help them get better. As a father I need to place her interests at the top of my priority list and do everything I can to help. So I accepted the position as head coach at LMH," Brubaker said.
Assistant coaches Pinky Geraci and Ali Merrifield will join him at LMH.
"It has been my privilege to have coached at Columbia. If I had seen this coming I would never have come to Columbia for just one year. I take with me many great memories from a season where the girls accomplished so much. I urge them to continue with their dedication to the game and pursue the Section 4 championship in 2011 with all their effort," the coach said.

Turkey Hill Experience photos

An original milk box from when Turkey Hill delivered milk in town.
Here are the photos taken this morning at the kickoff for the construction of the Turkey Hill Experience.

Turkey Hill logo

Artist rendition of the Turkey Hill Experience

The Turkey Hill cow was among those smiling at this morning's ceremony.

John Cox, representing Turkey Hill Dairy was the master of ceremonies.

Columbia Mayor Leo Lutz was among the speakers.
Turkey Hill recognized Norm Meiskey, Jeff Seibert and Leo Lutz for their help with the project.

Bill Roberts is the developer

Quinton Frey is the president of Turkey Hill Dairy.

Norm Meiskey, Jeff Seibert and Bill Roberts pull on a sign.

Jeff Seibert of CEDC.
The new sign at the THE.

Norm Meiskey, Leo Lutz, Quinton Frey, Bill Roberts, John Cox and Jeff Seibert.

THE link

Here is a link to the THE website that will allow people to follow the progress of the construction:

WGAL story on THE

Here is a link to the WGAL story on the start of the Turkey Hill Experience project: