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Big time birthday for a Perry County town - abc27 WHTM

Big time birthday for a Perry County town

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  • Let's Go PlacesMore>>

  • Historic Ferry Boat Operation Still Draws Riders

    Historic Ferry Boat Operation Still Draws Riders

    Historic Ferry Boat Operation Still Draws Riders

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 9:16 AM EDT2014-08-26 13:16:25 GMT
    It's only a one mile journey in distance, but it covers nearly two centuries in time."People come to enjoy the river," said Don Lebo, as he guided another load of vehicles onto the Roaring Bull V. "They come to enjoy the scenery and to enjoy the wildlife."Lebo should know. He's been at the helm of the Roaring Bull V and the Falcon III ferry boats for 25 years.The 20 minute trip across the Susquehanna River dates back to the early 1800's when the Millersburg Ferry system first became official....More >>
    It's only a one mile journey in distance, but it covers nearly two centuries in time."People come to enjoy the river," said Don Lebo, as he guided another load of vehicles onto the Roaring Bull V. "They come to enjoy the scenery and to enjoy the wildlife."Lebo should know. He's been at the helm of the Roaring Bull V and the Falcon III ferry boats for 25 years.The 20 minute trip across the Susquehanna River dates back to the early 1800's when the Millersburg Ferry system first became official....More >>
  • Book Trilogy Traces Elizabethville Woman's West Virginia Roots.

    Book Trilogy Traces Elizabethville Woman's West Virginia Roots.

    Book Trilogy Traces Elizabethville Woman's West Virginia Roots.

    Friday, August 22 2014 8:59 AM EDT2014-08-22 12:59:44 GMT
    For many of her 87 years, Anna Jean Bennett Ditty was told, "You ought to write a book!" So, ten years ago, she did. In fact, she needed three books to cover her life, starting with "The House on the Hill," about growing up with three siblings in a small West Virginia town during the depression, with a hard-working mom and an absentee father.Browsing through her first book, Ditty paused to point out a childhood picture of her baby brother Dickie."He's my baby brother," she said. "My momma alw...More >>
    For many of her 87 years, Anna Jean Bennett Ditty was told, "You ought to write a book!" So, ten years ago, she did. In fact, she needed three books to cover her life, starting with "The House on the Hill," about growing up with three siblings in a small West Virginia town during the depression, with a hard-working mom and an absentee father.Browsing through her first book, Ditty paused to point out a childhood picture of her baby brother Dickie."He's my baby brother," she said. "My momma alw...More >>
  • Perry County Church Given New Life

    Perry County Church Given New Life

    Perry County Church Given New Life

    Tuesday, August 19 2014 11:02 AM EDT2014-08-19 15:02:59 GMT
    A big reason why Darlene Barrick fought to save the Mahanoy Union Church from bulldozers lies in the small cemetery next to it."This is Ulysses Grant Baker. My grandfather Baker," said Barrick, pointing to one of several headstones in the church cemetery with direct family ties. "He helped build the church."At another stone she added, "This is my Uncle Albert who fought in World War One."Since closing in the early 1960's, the church suffered heavily from neglect and vandalism. But stepping in...More >>
    A big reason why Darlene Barrick fought to save the Mahanoy Union Church from bulldozers lies in the small cemetery next to it."This is Ulysses Grant Baker. My grandfather Baker," said Barrick, pointing to one of several headstones in the church cemetery with direct family ties. "He helped build the church."At another stone she added, "This is my Uncle Albert who fought in World War One."Since closing in the early 1960's, the church suffered heavily from neglect and vandalism. But stepping in...More >>

It's a welcome mat of beauty surrounding this western Perry county community. It's a town named after mill owner James Blaine, 250 years ago. The "e" in Blain has since disappeared, but not the small town feel enjoyed by the borough's 305 residents.

"Dad likes to set on the porch. And people will go by and they'll wave. They'll blow the horn," said his daughter Joan Stone.

Her dad is 96 year old Ken Morrow, a retired farmer who says he loves living where some people call "out in the sticks."

"It is out, but, I guess you have to be kind of used to that," said Morrow. But, I don't think we'd trade it for city life, no time."

In its earliest days, Blain's early economy was built around mills, tanneries, farms and the railroad, with small businesses lining downtown's dirt streets. Today, farming is still big in Sherman's Valley, and mom and pop stores remain a vital part of Blain's commerce. It's a place where one's faith and old glory are always in season. It's where the lions club and Heritage Days are a big deal. And, downtown traffic is safe enough for four legged residents. Looking ahead for Blain, Mayor Don Smith says blending the town's past with its future is a priority

"We want to try our utmost best to bring it (Blain) back, similar to what it was, as far as the buildings and the upkeep," said Smith.

One of those believing in Blain's future is the new owner of the town's landmark Blain Hotel, Janel Beaston.

"It's a very close knit community and anybody would do anything for you," said Beaston. "Everybody knows each other. If you need something, you go ask your neighbor to help."

And for anyone visiting Blain for the first time, life-long resident Joan Stone had this advice: "Relax. Enjoy the scenery and smell the roses."

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