I would to start this week’s column with a huge shoutout to the Chestnut Ridge Post 444 Veterans of Foreign Wars for a very nice and well organized dedication service for the Memorial Flag held last weekend in the field below the Veterans Memorial Bridge. There was a nice turnout and a lot of great speakers. Great job!

* * *

Derry Township Tax Collector Debby Zello writes in with an important announcement:

“Happy Thanksgiving, Derry Township taxpayers! I hope everyone is doing what they can to stay healthy and safe during this COVID-19 pandemic. Just want to keep everyone updated on wants going on for real estate and per capita tax updates. First, the penalty period for your spring, county/township real estate taxes, has been waived and the face amount is due by Dec. 31. Secondly, there have been no due date changes to your fall, school real estate taxes, face amount is until Nov. 30., and penalty until Dec. 31.

“Next, our office is currently open for in-person payments when you follow the guidelines posted on the administration building doors. Masks are required. Should the office close again due the COVID-19 pandemic, please mail your payments to: 978 N. Chestnut St. Ext., Derry, PA 15627. If a receipt is required. include the entire statement and a self-addressed stamped envelope. I would suggest to call the office (at) 724-694-5115 for any office hour updates before coming to make a payment. As long as the administration building remains open, there is a red locked box outside of the tax office for real estate and per capita payments. Payments need to be in a sealed envelope when placing them in the box. If you would like a receipt, please include a self-addressed stamped envelope.

“Currently, the final day to pay your per capita and real estate taxes in person at face is Wednesday, Nov. 25., the day before Thanksgiving. The administration building will be closed Nov. 26 through Nov. 30. If you cannot make your payment by Nov. 25, You need to make sure it is postmarked by Nov. 30, by the USPS to avoid the penalty charge.

“Thank you to everyone for your patience during the COVID-19 pandemic! It hasn’t been easy, but we can get through this together!

Debby Zello.”

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Something to consider this week.

A few years ago, an international organization defined rich as the upper third of the world population. Here is their definition:

1. You get one meal a day.

2. You have one pair of shoes.

3. You have one change of clothing.

4. You have a dry place to sleep at night.

5. You get to vote in a free election in your lifetime.

If you can say yes to just these five criteria you are better off than roughly 70% of the world’s population, approximately five billion people, and truly rich.

Fortunately, I think we all are blessed enough to say we meet these criteria, and when we are blessed we have the opportunity to enrich the lives of others. A unique opportunity to enrich the lives of the youngest amongst us is now available. Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is now available to the children of Derry Area School District! This program, established in 1995, provides quality, age appropriate books once a month to children from birth until their 5th birthday.

The books are selected by a committee of education and child development experts. The books are free to the children and mailed directly to them each month.

Thanks to grants from Latrobe Elks Lodge No. 907 and the Derry Area School District Foundation, we are able to register our first group of recipients. However, our goal is not to register some of our children. Our goal is to register every eligible child in Derry Area for this program.

We’re hoping to fund a large number of our recipients through sponsorships. It costs just $25 to sponsor a child for a full year of membership in the Imagination Library. That’s less than $2.10 a month for a child to have a high-quality book mailed directly to his or her home! Anyone wishing to give the gift of books can send their donation to: Derry Area School District Foundation, Attn. Brenda Bitz, 982 North Chestnut Street Ext., Derry, PA 15626

Please memo your check “Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library” or “DPIL”. Also, please include your email address so you can receive updates on the books that children receive each month and other facts about Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, early literacy and events for Derry Area’s Pre K population. For questions concerning donations, please contact David McCleary at dmccleary@dasd.us or call 724-694-2780, ext. 3312.

This is a unique and special way to impact the lives of our very youngest Trojans and help them improve their quality of life and chances for success in school and beyond. We hope everyone will find it in their hearts to give the gift of books to the youngest children of Derry Area.

If anyone has any questions concerning registration, please contact Mrs. Barbie Jones at bjones@dasd.us or call 724-694-1400, ext 1377. Please also watch for information and articles on the project in the Derry Diary and on social media.

May you and yours have a blessed and Happy Thanksgiving!

* * *

Derry Area School District 21st Century Community Learning Center Program Director Debbie Gray would like to share that the after-school program (aft3r@dasd) will be offered virtually throughout the month of November. Elementary students can join in on the fun at 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 4 to 5 p.m. Friday on days when school is in session. Secondary students are invited to attend from 3 to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday. The program is free to students in the Derry Area School District K-12. A variety of STE(A)M activities are planned daily.

To register, go to cclc.dasd.us. A follow-up email will be sent upon registration.

For more information? Email Debbie at dgray@dasd.us

Sign up today!

* * *

Derry Borough will continue to pick up bagged leaves weekly on Mondays through Thursdays until Thursday, Dec. 3.

The public works department asks kindly for our residents to please put the bags in the front of your property for pick up. Please be mindful of separating from your refuse. Thank you.

* * *

Congratulations to Derry Area High School Senior David McElfresh who received a perfect score (5) on the Calculus and Physics 2020 AP exams. AP exams assess a student’s knowledge of AP course material and determine whether they are qualified to test out of similar introductory courses in college. A high score on an AP test indicates that a student is already working at a college level in that subject area. Derry Area Education Foundation generously provided funding for Derry Area High School students taking the 2020 AP test.

* * *

Derry Borough will receive bids on Municibid at https://municibid.com until 4 p.m. Friday, Nov. 20, for a 2006 F-250 and 7-foot Meyer Snow Plow, with mileage of 52,782.

Interested bidders may view the equipment at the Derry Borough Municipal Building from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. by scheduling a visit at 724-694-2656 or 724-694-2030. All equipment will be sold free and clear of any liens or claims. All sales are final and the vehicle shall be accepted by the successful bidder in “as is” condition. .

All conforming bids will be publicly reviewed and highest bidder will be approved upon receipt of payment at the Derry Borough Council’s regular meeting at 7 p.m. Dec. 8 at A.V. Germano Hall, 100 West Second St., Derry.

The borough may reject any or all bids, if the bids are deemed to be less than fair market value of the property.

* * *

Lastly, I know this year has been really difficult for a lot of people, including me, and I know that I don’t have to tell you why. But for what it’s worth, I would like to truly wish each and everyone of you, including my enemies, a Happy Thanksgiving!

* * *

Have a great weekend and let’s go Steelers!

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Derry Diary items may be emailed to liberoni@aol.com.

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