Monday, January 26, 2015

Would you donate a dollar to save your town?

How much change do you have in your pocket or purse right now? Chances are, it’s close to a dollar, maybe two. If so, how much would it affect your ability to pay your bills this month if you were to send one dollar to a worthy cause? And what if you knew that dollar could make a difference? I mean a real difference. Norristown is on the brink of revitalization, but there are certain key pieces to the puzzle that also have to be in place for it to make a real come back. A town not only needs to be clean, and safe, and have a thriving business community, but it also needs to have a vibrant arts scene. Unfortunately, the arts community cannot be self-sustaining. It needs the help of the communities it serves to keep the creative juices flowing. To that end, the Centre Theater in Norristown is struggling and it needs your help. In this week's rant I explore the possibilities of what a dollar could actually do for the county seat of Norristown, Pennsylvania.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Norristown needs to resolve itself to revitalize

In my latest rant I go off about New Year's resolutions and how people pretty much dumped them after the first couple of weeks of January are in the books. I think people should resolve to do things when the moment strikes, not at the end of the year when they're thinking about all the things they should have done before the calendar came around for a change.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Calling Christopher Walken: Norristown needs more cow bell!

In my latest rant I talk about the good things in Norristown that are attracting people to downtown again, but, as I see it, there just aren't enough venues. We need more cowbell! Within the past couple of years we have seen new restaurants come along, including Banh Mi and Almaz CafĂ©, to join La Michoacana and August Moon, two established restaurants that anchor Main and Arch streets. The international flair is there, we just need to bring everyone together to talk about it, and more importantly to tell people who live outside Norristown about it. The addition of the new Five Saints Distillery, which is expected to debut sometime late this year, will add another dimension to Main Street. August Moon also hosts Second Saturday jazz nights every month drawing a crowd from far and wide to come into town to hear authentic jazz that might make you think you were sitting in a speak easy on Iberville St. in New Orleans. But the restaurants alone won’t keep the momentum going. We need specialty shops, and more eateries, to complement the two theaters we have in the county seat. The Centre Theater is holding ‘A Night of Wine and Roses’ with two live shows on, you guessed it, Valentine’s Day. Tickets can be purchased at There are a lot of other events at the theater, which is currently undergoing a series of renovations throughout the building to attract a more diverse audience, including a space for music lessons and a small independent and second run movie theater. Theatre Horizon, celebrating its 10th anniversary, continues to produce stellar stage productions, and also holds acting classes, hosts an autism drama program as well as an after school drama club. These are the things that attract people to downtowns all across America. And we need more of them.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Journalism's future in 2015 and beyond

No, I'm not trying to channel Buzz Lightyear, I'm just thinking about the future of our newsrooms. In this week's rant I take a moment to reflect on the past year, but spend the majority of time talking about what the future of journalism holds. I think it's a bright future. You may not. No matter where you stand on the subject always remember the words of Thomas Jefferson: "Were it left to me to decide whether there should be government without newspapers or newspapers without government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter." Well said, Tom, well said.