Enchanted Mountain Music Festival receives grant. See story below.

Blaze damaging dump truck in Elk County investigated….Endless Mountain Music Festival receives grant….Tree seedlings now on sale at Game Commission….Covid death rates hold steady in region….

Thursday’s high, 17; Overnight low, -11

FRI-MOSTLY SUNNY, HIGH 20

FRI NIGHT-MOSTLY CLEAR, LOW -4

SAT-MOSTLY SUNNY, HIGH 25

SAT NIGHT-CLEAR, LOW 16

SUN-SCATTERED SNOW SHOWERS, HIGH 24

The state police fire marshal has determined a blaze in a 1999 Ford 450 dump truck early Wednesday morning in Jones Township was accidental. The truck was owned by Asti Specialized of Wilcox and damage is estimated to be $25,000.

Minor injuries were reported for a Weedville driver after a weather related accident back on January 9 in Jay Township, Elk. County. Ridgway state police say Keely Chiodo was going east on Route 555 during a snow storm when her 2019 Jeep Cherokee crossed the road, and rolled over onto its roof after hitting a ditch. Chiodo declined treatment for minor injuries.

The Endless Mountain Music Festival has been approved for a $10,000 Challenge America award to support bringing four diverse guest artists to perform during five of this summer’s 17 concerts and a fifth guest artist to present an in-school educational workshop and performance in March.The EMMF project is one of 168 across America totaling $1,680,000 that were selected to receive fiscal year 2022 funding in the Challenge America grant category.

On Thursday and Friday, March 3 and 4, jazz pianist Bram Wijnands with NEA support will present in-school educational workshops to band students at Williamson Junior-Senior High School at Tioga Junction. He will assist them in creating their own original composition and give a free in-school concert where the band will premiere their new work and Wijnands will play jazz classics. The festival will present a concert each day for 17 days from Friday, July 22 through Sunday, Aug. 7. Featured will be a menu of music for children and adults presented by world-class musicians at venues in Pennsylvania and in Corning, New York.

Among the four guest artists funded in part by the NEA grant is Corky Siegel, one of the world’s great blues harmonica masters, a composer, blues pianist and singer who will be featured at two performances by the EMMF Symphony Orchestra this summer.Siegel’s first concert will be at the Corning Museum of Glass at 7 p.m. Saturday, July 23 with he and the orchestra performing one of his concertos and other works. The second, a free family-friendly pops concert with classics and Siegel-composed works and collaborations, will be at the Grand Canyon Regional Airport near Wellsboro at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, July 24.

Vance Gilbert, an American folk singer-songwriter nationally known for his acoustic guitar compositions, will give a solo performance on Thursday, July 28 at 7 p.m. at the Deane Center for the Performing Arts in Wellsboro. Peggy Dettwiler, (pictured) director of Choral Activities at Mansfield University, will conduct “A Tribute to Irving Berlin” featuring choral groups and the EMMF Symphony Orchestra at 7 p.m. on Friday, July 29 at MU. Rebecca Dodson-Webster, an orchestra member, professor of horn at MU and a member of the Williamsport and the Southern Finger Lakes symphony orchestras, will present a pre-concert lecture at 6:30 p.m. Luis Engelke on trumpet will perform one of his own compositions during the free concert being presented by the brass section of the EMMF orchestra at 7 p.m. on Sunday, July 31 at Cherry Springs State Park in Potter County. They will also perform Holst’s “The Planets” and tunes by Henry Mancini. This concert is a collaboration between the festival and the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. Immediately following the concert will be a stargazing through telescopes program. The National Endowment for the Arts is an independent federal agency that funds, promotes, and strengthens the creative capacity of communities by providing all Americans with diverse opportunities for arts participation. For more information about the Endless Mountain Music Festival, call 570-787-7800.

It may be hard to believe this weekend, but the Game Commission says it’s not too early for landowners to begin making plans to improve wildlife habitat this spring and into the future by planting tree and shrub species offered by the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s Howard Nursery. The 2022 seedling order form is available online, and sales are underway.

The Howard Nursery, located in Centre County, grows tree and shrub seedlings for use on State Game Lands, Hunter Access properties, the Seedling for Schools program, and other Game Commission conservation partners. Any remaining surplus is available to Pennsylvania residents for purchase. Seedlings are sold in units of 25.

Three conifer species are available this year, including northern white cedar, and white and Norway spruce that make excellent thermal cover for a variety of wildlife.Hardwood species include black locust, Washington hawthorn, northern red, pin, and sawtooth oak. Shrubs include graystem and silky dogwood, northern bayberry, and ninebark. Stone says ninebark has attractive white flowers and is an excellent nectar source and pollinator.

Orders of 12 or more total units qualify for applicable discounted pricing. With the discount, prices are as low as $5.50 per unit. Regular prices range from $8 to $10 depending upon the seedling species.

To place an order call Howard Nursery at 814-355-4434 during regular hours, Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Orders can be placed by FAX at 814-355-8094.

The order form is available at www.pgc.pa.gov. There is a link under Quick Clicks.

The  state Health Department reports the number of deaths in Pennsylvania now totals 39,093. Deaths  in the Black Forest Broadcasting Service area  to date are holding steady.

Cameron 16

Elk 83 (up 1)

McKean 121

Potter 80

Tioga 178

Cattaraugus County in NY state now has  199 total deaths. Allegany County has  held steady at 140 total deaths.