May 10, 2001 |
When the school board here announced in a local newsletter last month that it would have to enact an earned-income tax and nearly double property taxes next year, even some board members were baffled. The district does not operate any public schools and does not fund public kindergarten. The eight students attending public school do so in neighboring Lower Moreland. That is where the problem came about. According to the announcement, Lower Moreland was "threatening legal action" against Bryn Athyn as a result of $55,000 in back payments owed the district.
March 7, 2001 |
Elizabeth Grubb did not realize that failing to pay a tax worth about the price of a movie ticket would result in her being treated as an outlaw. In a town this small, however, where the weekly newsletter addresses people by their first names, telling the neighbors, it seems, is a good way to get everybody to pay their fair share. In bold, black letters on the door of borough hall are listed the names of last year's 90 tax delinquents. "I'm catching up with it," Grubb said, adding that she was more concerned about mailing her electric bill on time - and having heat - than she was about public humiliation.
February 5, 2001 |
Tracy Cass barely knew David Powell. But she knew the half-bushels of peaches and apples stacked next to his old red barn on Tomlinson Road. As a child, Cass recalled, she visited Powell's orchard with her family, and the fruit tasted natural and special. After Powell died in September 1999 at age 92, his stucco-covered stone farmhouse - which local restoration buffs date to the pre-Revolutionary War era - was destined for mothballs. The white paint was peeling, the pine floors were rotting, and the basement resembled a scene from a horror flick, Cass, now 40, recalled.
October 16, 2000 |
When Academy of the New Church College changed its name in 1997 to Bryn Athyn College of the New Church, some members of this small community worried about the implications of moving the institution's religious affiliation to the end of the line. Many students welcomed the decision, said Charles Lindsay, the college dean, because it relieved them of the requisite dissertation on the Swedenborgian faith every time an out-of-towner asked, "Where do you go to school?" The place quickly was nicknamed Bryn Athyn College, which was more sweatshirt-friendly anyway, he said.
October 15, 2000 |
When Shawn Rose talks about dandelion genocide - the eradication frenzy rooted in a nation obsessed with sleek lawns - you cannot help but pity this perennial plant, alternately labeled "puffball" and "swine snout. " After all, however aesthetically repulsive its leafless stalk with a blond afro is, a dandelion has a lot going for it: Reputed to purify the blood and flush toxins out of the body, it also is more nutritious than a carrot, Rose said. So why is Rose, a yard weed's best friend, crouching with about 30 other people on a crisp Friday evening, jabbing his trowel into the moist ground and emerging with a heaping fistful of dandelion guts?
September 26, 2000 |
In celebration of Cairnwood's christening as a corporate-friendly chateau, most of the guests were sucking on bite-size pastries and toasting the mansion as "absolutely fabulous. " But just past the Grand Hall, where John and Gertrude Pitcairn look-alikes warmly greeted the attendees on a recent Thursday, two event planners from Toll Bros. were skeptical about packing 50 executives into an odd-shaped space called the music room. "It's not sterile and corporate-looking. It's warm and fuzzy.
May 16, 2000 |
It couldn't have been a sweeter deal for Janet Davis. An older woman contacted the real-estate agent about five years ago, saying she didn't want the hassle of selling her home here on her own, but she would hand Davis a list of four interested buyers. Davis sold the house in two days, but the self-satisfied aura about her quickly disappeared. Bryn Athyn clients, she knew, are rare. "I've got to make money. I'm not going to make it in Bryn Athyn," said Davis, who lives here but primarily sells homes elsewhere in eastern Montgomery County and in Lower Bucks.
February 16, 2000 |
Few candidates run and not many serve for long on a school board representing a district that operates no schools. In Bryn Athyn, where virtually all school-age children attend the Swedenborgian church school, "we usually have to beg people" to run for school board, said board member Gail Steiner. Still, said School Board President Robert H.P. Cole, "we always manage to fill the board. " But last year one of those candidates apparently violated a state eligibility requirement.
February 10, 2000 |
Having experienced only one win in the last two seasons, the Bryn Athyn College men's ice hockey team probably needed some practice celebrating last week. Bryn Athyn defeated Scranton and Widener to improve to 3-5-3. Although Bryn Athyn is by no means in the hunt for a playoff spot in the Delaware Valley Collegiate Hockey Conference, the players certainly have gotten a shot in the arm. "They're playing well as a team," Bryn Athyn coach Brian Schnarr said. "They haven't been able to hold on to leads since early in the season.
February 3, 2000 |
After a plea Tuesday night from the mother of a kindergarten-age child, one borough school board member said she was "reconsidering" her vote for a policy to not fund public kindergarten. Lisa Knight said that one other board member, whom she would not identify, also was "on the fence" about the policy, which made Bryn Athyn the only community in the state that does not pay for public kindergarten. But the rest of the board seemed comfortable with the policy Tuesday night, even after Gail Steiner, who voted against it, said several of her colleagues were confused about what they had voted on. In an 8-1 vote in December, the board decided to pay for public education only for children who are at least 5 years, 7 months old by Sept.