Bellefonte Historical and Cultural Association
Bellefonte, Pennsylvania
Minutes of Past Meetings


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March 27, 2015, 7 PM
Bellefonte Art Museum

Present:  Romayne Naylor, President, Dave Eggler, Treasurer, Susan Hoover, Joanne Tosti-Vasey, Dave Kurtz, True Fisher, Melady Kehm, Nancy Perkins, Nancy Miller, Colina Seeley, Ralph Seeley, Gay Dunne, Jeanne Newlin, Phil Ruth, Julia Kasdorf, Patrick North, Joseph Griffin, JoAnn Knupp, Dick Knupp.  Jim Dunne joined by conclusion of meeting.  A quorum was in attendance as defined by the BHCA bylaws.

Minutes – Minutes of February 27, 2015 were approved (Melady, Nancy M.)

Treasurer’s Report (Dave Eggler) click here to see the report – July 1 is the due date for BHCA dues when the new fiscal year starts. Treasurer’s report approved (Gay, Nancy M.)

Committee Reports

     Curtin Village – Susan Hoover conveyed Gary Hoover’s report.  The committee is in the process of formation.  The important relationship to Bellefonte and Centre County was brought up and discussed. Kate Curtin Yeager is interested in being on the committee as other Curtin family members had been. To be investigated is what the status of ownership, governance, and liability is now in Harrisburg in order to expand interest in furthering preservation among new people.  The role of BHCA then can be considered further, as there is deep interest in preventing destruction by neglect.

     Summer Sounds (Nancy Miller and JoAnn Knupp) – Plans are slightly behind while waiting for the schedule to become permanent, but the committee is excited to have a solid commitment from Repaz (Williamsport),  the oldest non-military band in continuous existence in the U.S. The schedule is expected to be firmed up by our next meeting. The season will be June 12 through August 9.

    Sunday Afternoons at the Library – Sundays, 2:30 PM     Next Concerts:

                                                                                Air Dynamics, flute – April 12

                                                                                 Allegria Ensemble – May 17

    Gallery at the Gamble Mill – Continues closed.  Contrary to rumors, the building and business have not been sold after all.

    Victorian Christmas (Romayne) – The four co-chairs met and have made lists of tasks for this year and they have completed them. Already they are moving on to the next phase.

     Poetry (Julia) – Next event is April 17, “Poem in Your Pocket.”  Participants may bring a poem to read.   Additionally, the committee has been approached by Abbey Minor, a Smith College graduate who worked in D.C., and now is in Milheim. She is developing a program, “Being Heard,” for her writing class.  It will feature stories and imaginative elements to be collected from Centre County’s elders, especially from the senior center and Centre Crest nursing home. Ms. Minor is seeking a fiduciary sponsor which would host the grants she hopes to gather.  Joanne Tosti-Vasey moved that BHCA become the sponsor.  Ralph Seeley seconded the motion.  Dave Eggler approved the concept.  The motion carried unanimously.

    Old House Fair (Melady)- Melady announced that she is stepping down as chair but will continue to serve on the committee.  Joseph Griffin now will be the chair.  Joseph reported that, the OHF having been postponed in January, the committee shortly will resume regular meetings, picking up where it left off then. The revised date of the OHF will be determined in due course as progress ensues.

   Historic Preservation (Jeanne) – Plans are being made to honor Dave Kurtz during this 50th anniversary  year  of his celebrated kayaking program.  Romayne is consulting with Big Spring Festival to learn whether kayaking separately could be included.  Time is short, as that event is May 17.  Likewise, the August Arts and Crafts Festival in Talleyrand Park included kayaking last year and no doubt will again. This would be another opportunity to consider.

An extensive report and discussion was conducted of the committee’s unexpected but deeply welcomed potential chance for the BHCA to move and preserve the endangered Freight Station.  For the time being, it remains near the former Bush House site, now the Waterfront development location and is at serious risk of demolishment.  Dave Kurtz has come forth with a proposed to move it to Talleyrand, preferably near the train depot and tracks.  He has pledged to fund the move.  The building would be repurposed as a kayaking museum tracing the history of his program and kayaking itself.  Various kayaks and canoes would be displayed. The tie between railroading and the activities associated with Big Spring was recognized and appreciated in the discussion.

Romayne reported that she had the opportunity to inform Kerry Benninghoff of this project.  He asked her to keep him informed and to let him know when the details are in place.  He will consider what historic preservation funding might be available.

New Business Action must proceed quickly because demolishment is a factor if the structure is in the way of imminent work on the property. The proposal must be made to the BAIDA on April 8 and then a further presentation to Borough Council on April 20 (after which HARB is to be consulted, followed by final consideration of Borough Council).

Don Holderman is assisting in developing the presentation to BAIDA as a result of Gay’s meeting with him.  Jim Dunne already has produced excellent visuals of the building and potential new locations. Consideration of how to move it and whether to disassemble it to do so as well as who could do the move continued. Jim will get appropriate materials to the BAIDA members in advance of the meeting of April 8.

   The Bellefonte Area High School Art Club’s “Empty Bowls” dinner benefiting Faith Centre Food Bank was held earlier this evening and was attended by a significant group of BHCA members prior to our meeting. It clearly was a big success.  Susan Hoover thanked everyone who supported the event at the Food Bank here in Bellefonte which served 800 people last month.

     Talleyrand Park (True) – The original Court House fountain had been removed long ago, probably when the war memorials were installed, and it had long been lost. The fountain now has been found in disrepair.  The welder who does the work in the park has reassembled and restored it as much as possible. It will be displayed in Talleyrand at the end of the Sculpture Garden. It is 4 feet in diameter.

Next BHCA Meeting:  7 PM, Thursday, April 16, at the Bellefonte Art Museum.

Motion to adjourn at 8:50 PM (True, Nancy P.)

Jeanne Newlin, Acting Secretary