Atlas Cement Company Memorial Museum, Northampton, which enjoys a worldwide reputation and is the only such museum in the United States, opens its doors for the 2016 season May 8. The museum will be open at no cost to the public 1-3 p.m. on the second and fourth Sundays through Sept. 25.
The museum, 1401 Laubach Ave., recognizes present and former cement mills that dotted the region, but the museum’s main focus is on the rich history of the Atlas plant, which closed in 1982, and the thousands of men and women who worked there.
Phillips Armstrong launched his campaign for state representative of the 183rd Legislative District Jan. 28 before an enthusiastic crowd at Tri-Boro Sportsmen Club, Northampton, stating, “If you want to make a difference, you have to make an impact.”
Whitehall Township Mayor Edward D. Hozza Jr. introduced Armstrong at the campaign opener.
Armstrong, president of Whitehall Township Board of Commissioners, is seeking the Democratic nomination for the seat currently held by state Rep. Julie Harhart, who announced she will not seek re-election.
State Rep. Dan McNeill, D-133rd, surrounded by family and friends announced he is seeking re-election for the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, a seat he has held for the past two terms. The kick-off was held at Palace Pizza, Hokendauqua, Whitehall Township, Jan. 27.
During his re-election announcement, McNeill said paychecks for legislators should be put on the back burner if a state budget fails to pass by June 30.
Atlas Cement Company Memorial Museum, the only museum in the United States honed to retain the legacy of Universal Atlas Cement Company, whose Northampton plant produced cement for the Empire State Building, Panama Canal and other great landmarks, drew 2,740 visitors in 2015.
Visitors from abroad came from India, Malaysia, Germany and three provinces from Canada. They join visitors from previous years who came from China, Mexico, Austria, England and other countries.
One of the largest property transfer sales in Coplay that has taken place in recent memory is the two-story brick structure at North Third and Hall streets, which was sold for $446,250, something unheard of in the borough.
Borough coffers were enriched by $2,231, the same for the school district.
The structure houses the American Club of Coplay in the basement, bar and bowling alleys, apartments and a dance studio on the top floor.
Decades past, the first floor had a state liquor store and post office. A women's veterans organization held its meetings on the top floor.
Coplay Recreation & Welfare Association is noting its 60th anniversary.
In keeping with its purpose to serve the community in a myriad of programs and projects, the association is holding its annual fund drive this month and next.
The organization organizes many events in the borough, such as the Halloween parade, Christmas tree-lighting and concert and children's Easter egg hunt.
It also provides scholarships to high school seniors and backpacks and school supplies to students as well as offers food and monetary assistance to those in emergency situations.
Projections just released by Rick Molchany, Lehigh County director of general services, show the Hokendauqua-North Catasauqua Bridge, under construction since late 2013, could be open to traffic as soon as October.
"That is the goal," Molchany told The Press recently. "We are making progress."
Earlier estimates had put the bridge opening in December.
Molchany said he would have more definitive information after an upcoming meeting with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and HRI Contractors.
The borough's population will swell Sunday, Aug. 2, when St. Peter's Roman Catholic Church holds its 61st annual parish family picnic and homecoming on its spacious grounds on Fifth Street.
Families, who over the years have moved out of town, will return for the celebration with local families.
While there is no official count of those attending the homecoming, estimates put the crowds in the 2,000 range.
More than just a fundraiser for the church, the one-day event is, by any measure, a homecoming celebration, reuniting families and friends.
The borough's lower end, where commerce prospered decades ago before shopping centers and malls came on the scene, is making a comeback of sorts.
Signs of a rebirth are evident on Second and Chestnut streets.
The latest addition to Second Street is Barry Lovelace Athletic Training Academy, located in the long-vacant Merchants National Bank.
A suite or two in the same brick structure could be occupied by tenants later this year.
Construction crews this week continue to pour concrete for the deck of the new Hokendauqua-North Catasauqua Bridge which will be open to vehicle traffic later this year, much later than the earlier projections that called for the bridge to be completed last October.