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For such a small town, we have a lot going on New Year’s Eve. Our motto is, “You don’t have to go far to feel far away.”

Indeed, once you park your car, we’ll take care of the rest. Whatever you choose to do, it’s going to be fun.

As restaurant and other details come in for New Year happenings, we’ll post them here. Meantime, also check with our excellent restaurants!

New Years Eve, Jim Thorpe, PATony Stella’s Encore – (66 Broadway) – A 5-star restaurant in the historic Albright Mansion right downtown. Dinner will be served from 5PM until 11 PM, bar open until 2 PM. Experience Tony Stella’s class cuisine and service in a casual setting. Enjoy the lovely Melissa Van Fleet performing on the 1886 grand piano. Ring in the New Year with class!

Broadway Grille & Pub – (24 Broadway) – New Year’s Eve Dinner and Party. Special gourmet prix fixe dinner menu, complimentary glass of Champagne. Live music with award-winning musicians Steve Brosky & Jimmy Meyer from 9:30-12:30 am, noisemakers, party favors, drink specials, no cover.

New Years Eve Jim Thorpe PAMacaluso’s – (1257 East Catawissa, Nesquehoning, PA – just 3 miles away, they pick you up in town!) – It’s New Year’s Eve1 at Macaluso’s Restaurant. Happy Holidays and especially a Happy New Year! We celebrate New Year’s Eve with dinners from 4:30 until 10:00 PM. We offer our regular menu plus our “Best-Selling Additions of 2014.” We do require reservations so please call us at 570-669-9433. Next door, our motel offers great lodging and discounted lift tickets from nearby Blue Mountain Ski Resort!

Stone Row Pub & Eatery – (45 Race Street) – We’re a made-from-scratch restaurant, specializing in tasty food & drink for everyone at great prices. We keep our menu small so that we can accommodate allergies, intolerances & food choices. We use ingredients that are abundant & in-season. NYE New Years Eve 2014 HD wallpaper for Standard 4:3 5:4 Fullscreen UXGA XGA SVGA QSXGA SXGA ; Wide 16:10 5:3 Widescreen WHXGA WQXGA WUXGA WXGA WGA ; HD 16:9 High Definition WQHD QWXGA 1080p 900p 720p QHD nHD ; Other 3:2 DVGA HVGA HQVGA devices ( Apple PowerBook G4 iPhone 4 3G 3GS iPod Touch ) ; Mobile VGA WVGA iPhone iPad PSP Phone - VGA QVGA Smartphone ( PocketPC GPS iPod Zune BlackBerry HTC Samsung LG Nokia Eten Asus ) WVGA WQVGA Smartphone ( HTC Samsung Sony Ericsson LG Vertu MIO ) HVGA Smartphone ( Apple iPhone iPod BlackBerry HTC Samsung Nokia ) Sony PSP Zune HD Zen ; Tablet 2 Android 3 DVGA HVGA HQVGA devices ( Apple PowerBook G4 iPhone 4 3G 3GS iPod Touch ) ;includes: glass of champagne, wine or inspired mock-tail. Choose one of each: soup, salad, appetizer, entrée & dessert. $65 plus tax & gratuity. Reservations are helpful for our 2 seatings: 7:30 & 9:30pm. Our pub will be open with a select menu.  Please contact us to discuss any additional dietary issues that we will do our best to accommodate. Vegetarian choices can be made vegan, excluding crème brulee & the bouchon.

Penn’s Peak (325 Maury Road) – Featuring Get the Led Out, the fabulous Led Zeppelin tribute. 9 PM, 21 and older event. From the bombastic and epic, to the folky and mystical, Get The Led Out have captured the essence of the recorded music of Led Zeppelin and brought it to the concert stage. The Philadelphia-based group consists of six veteran musicians intent on delivering Led Zeppelin live, like you’ve never heard before.  GTLO re-creates the songs in all their depth and glory with the studio overdubs that Zeppelin themselves never performed and brings what the audience wants…a high energy Zeppelin concert with an honest, heart-thumping intensity.

Mauch Chunk Opera House (14 W Broadway) – 70’s Flashback rings in the new year 2015 with a night to remember. It is an 8-piece show band, performing the greatest music of the 1970’s. Their playing is almost like seeing your favorite performers onstage. Dance and party till midnight, right in town!.

New Year’s Package at the Inn at Jim Thorpe
 New Year's in Jim Thorpe PAIncludes 2-night stay, special gourmet New Year’s Eve dinner at the Broadway Grille, bottle of wine and 2 souvenir wine glasses, live music and party in the pub, daily $7 breakfast voucher, noon checkout and all taxes. Starts at $265 per person, double occupancy.

For accommodations, we can take care of that – check here.

 

 

Audiences return to yesteryear when the Mauch Chunk Opera House features silent film accompanied by the Paragon Ragtime Orchestra on Sunday, October 12.

When the Opera House was purchased in 1925 by the Comerford Company of Buffalo, NY, silent film had already come into its own, featuring box office stars Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd and many others.

Paragon Ragtime Orchestra at the Mauch Chunk Opera HouseOriginally built in 1881, the Opera House was remodeled to accommodate the tastes of the day, and provide state-of-the-art entertainment to residents and visitors who arrived in town (then known as Mauch Chunk) from New York’s Penn Station by the trainload, several times a day.

Audiences saw top-shelf ensembles performing scores written specially for the silent films they watched. If Charlie Chaplin was poked on the head, there was a musical sound for it that was written into the score. It wasn’t as if the orchestra simply performed a soundtrack: the music was integral to the experience of viewing the film.

Courtesy of the Paragon Ragtime Orchestra, that’s what a 21st-century audience will get to experience on Sunday, October 12 at 6 PM. Conductor and orchestra leader Rick Benjamin is able to present a fascinating experience that takes audiences back in time.

The orchestra was founded in 1985 by Benjamin and prompted by his discovery of an enormous cache of musical arrangements belonging to a theater orchestra, once led by Arthur Pryor. Benjamin organized a number of his fellow students at Juilliard to perform the material, and in 1988 The Paragon Ragtime Orchestra made its public premiere at New York’s Alice Tully Hall as the first period instrument ensemble to appear there.

Featuring the silent film stars Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, and Harold Lloyd, the films speak to an earlier time when these actors were famous and America’s music was Ragtime.

Read the Opera House’s fascinating interview with conductor Rick Benjamin, here.

Tickets cost only $25 for this one-of-a-kind experience and purchased online 24/7 at mcohjt.com, or call the Opera House box office at 570-325-0249.

Take Some Time Out

One of the most iconic views in Jim Thorpe is actually inside the the Strange Brew coffee house two blocks up from the Train Station Visitors Center on Broadway.

The mural of various well-known rock stars is hard to not stare at and muse over. Combine that with having an iced latte on a hot day and you have one of those sublime pleasures in life.

Walk up the main drag and there it is on the left just before Quarry Street. Relax over a cup here sometime.

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This article is taken from the New York Times, Sunday Review, August 9, 2014 edition. The original can be seen by clicking here.
As we contemplate the people that come to visit the Jim Thorpe area, in the summer and indeed in all seasons, we think about the nature of time off itself, and its many benefits. And Jim Thorpe is a great place to spend that time off and leave it all behind, even if for just a day or two.
Here are some things to ponder while doing whatever you do here – whether it’s rafting down a river, reading a book, sipping some coffee, or taking in a show.

By DANIEL J. LEVITIN AUG. 9, 2014

THIS month, many Americans will take time off from work to go on vacation, catch up on household projects and simply be with family and friends. And many of us will feel guilty for doing so. We will worry about all of the emails piling up at work, and in many cases continue to compulsively check email during our precious time off.

New York Times Reset Your BrainBut beware the false break. Make sure you have a real one. The summer vacation is more than a quaint tradition. Along with family time, mealtime and weekends, it is an important way that we can make the most of our beautiful brains.

Every day we’re assaulted with facts, pseudofacts, news feeds and jibber-jabber, coming from all directions. According to a 2011 study, on a typical day, we take in the equivalent of about 174 newspapers’ worth of information, five times as much as we did in 1986. As the world’s 21,274 television stations produce some 85,000 hours of original programming every day (by 2003 figures), we watch an average of five hours of television per day. For every hour of YouTube video you watch, there are 5,999 hours of new video just posted!

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, there’s a reason: The processing capacity of the conscious mind is limited. This is a result of how the brain’s attentional system evolved. Our brains have two dominant modes of attention: the task-positive network and the task-negative network (they’re called networks because they comprise distributed networks of neurons, like electrical circuits within the brain). The task-positive network is active when you’re actively engaged in a task, focused on it, and undistracted; neuroscientists have taken to calling it the central executive. The task-negative network is active when your mind is wandering; this is the daydreaming mode. These two attentional networks operate like a seesaw in the brain: when one is active the other is not.

This two-part attentional system is one of the crowning achievements of the human brain, and the focus it enables allowed us to harness fire, build the pyramids, discover penicillin and decode the entire human genome. Those projects required some plain old-fashioned stick-to-itiveness.

But the insight that led to them probably came from the daydreaming mode. This brain state, marked by the flow of connections among disparate ideas and thoughts, is responsible for our moments of greatest creativity and insight, when we’re able to solve problems that previously seemed unsolvable. You might be going for a walk or grocery shopping or doing something that doesn’t require sustained attention and suddenly — boom — the answer to a problem that had been vexing you suddenly appears. This is the mind-wandering mode, making connections among things that we didn’t previously see as connected.

A third component of the attentional system, the attentional filter, helps to orient our attention, to tell us what to pay attention to and what we can safely ignore. This undoubtedly evolved to alert us to predators and other dangerous situations. The constant flow of information from Twitter, Facebook, Vine, Instagram, text messages and the like engages that system, and we find ourselves not sustaining attention on any one thing for very long — the curse of the information age.

My collaborator Vinod Menon, a professor of neuroscience at Stanford, and I showed that the switch between daydreaming and attention is controlled in a part of the brain called the insula, an important structure about an inch or so beneath the surface of the top of your skull. Switching between two external objects involves the temporal-parietal junction. If the relationship between the central executive system and the mind-wandering system is like a seesaw, then the insula — the attentional switch — is like an adult holding one side down so that the other stays up in the air. The efficacy of this switch varies from person to person, in some functioning smoothly, in others rather rusty. But switch it does, and if it is called upon to switch too often, we feel tired and a bit dizzy, as though we were seesawing too rapidly.

Every status update you read on Facebook, every tweet or text message you get from a friend, is competing for resources in your brain with important things like whether to put your savings in stocks or bonds, where you left your passport or how best to reconcile with a close friend you just had an argument with.

If you want to be more productive and creative, and to have more energy, the science dictates that you should partition your day into project periods. Your social networking should be done during a designated time, not as constant interruptions to your day.

Email, too, should be done at designated times. An email that you know is sitting there, unread, may sap attentional resources as your brain keeps thinking about it, distracting you from what you’re doing. What might be in it? Who’s it from? Is it good news or bad news? It’s better to leave your email program off than to hear that constant ping and know that you’re ignoring messages.

Increasing creativity will happen naturally as we tame the multitasking and immerse ourselves in a single task for sustained periods of, say, 30 to 50 minutes. Several studies have shown that a walk in nature or listening to music can trigger the mind-wandering mode. This acts as a neural reset button, and provides much needed perspective on what you’re doing.

Daydreaming leads to creativity, and creative activities teach us agency, the ability to change the world, to mold it to our liking, to have a positive effect on our environment. Music, for example, turns out to be an effective method for improving attention, building up self-confidence, social skills and a sense of engagement.

This radical idea — that problem solving might take some time and doesn’t always have to be accomplished immediately — could have profound effects on decision making and even on our economy. Consider this: By some estimates, preventable medical error is the third leading cause of death in the United States, accounting for hundreds of thousands of deaths each year. You want your diagnostician to give the right answer, not always the quickest one. Zoning out is not always bad. You don’t want your airline pilot or air traffic controller to do it while they’re on the job, but you do want them to have opportunities to reset — this is why air traffic control and other high-attention jobs typically require frequent breaks. Several studies have shown that people who work overtime reach a point of diminishing returns.

Taking breaks is biologically restorative. Naps are even better. In several studies, a nap of even 10 minutes improved cognitive function and vigor, and decreased sleepiness and fatigue. If we can train ourselves to take regular vacations — true vacations without work — and to set aside time for naps and contemplation, we will be in a more powerful position to start solving some of the world’s big problems. And to be happier and well rested while we’re doing it.
Daniel J. Levitin is the director of the Laboratory for Music, Cognition and Expertise at McGill University and the author of “The Organized Mind: Thinking Straight in the Age of Information Overload.”

The Randy Rabenold Art Show will exhibit the collective works of local area educator, known to many as a living legend and an inspiration to many who have pursued art in their life, Milan Melicharek, Doug Rontz and Tracy Everett among the many., August 24th.

featuredA thirty-seven year veteran art teacher, Randy’s art roots were anchored in the Great Depression and baptized in the cruel winters of the Korean War, Rabenold’s works bear witness to a soul born in stark loneliness, his subjects often faceless forms traversing shadows toward a destination unclear.

Rabenold’s art also intersected the sporting world.  A founding member and director of fifty-years of the Jim Thorpe Summer League and a basketball coach most of his life, he published over 100 sports cartoons featured in the Times News.   Showing the lighter side of life, noting the milestones of athletes and their coaches, these cartoons contain snapshots into the feats and heartbreaks of the late 1970s sports scene.

Perhaps most interesting to many who know the man and his art, one will be able to view the genesis of his creative life as the show will include the pencil sketches of the young Rabenold at war during the Korean Conflict of the early 1950s.  Capturing the daily life of defense of remote ridges of an unforgiving and rugged landscape, one will see the untrained talents of a man who achieved what few can claim: the status of a living legend within one’s lifetime.

Go here to attend this show.

“Such seeds, though planted in bitter soil, still yielded the tenderest of men.”

Artistry Weekend Friday and Saturday at the Opera House

Two shows at the Mauch Chunk Opera House this weekend capture the very soul of different, but equally transcendent, types of music: on Friday, August 1st, Flamenco and World music are at the heart of the Latin guitar sound of Incendio, while on Saturday, August 2nd, the acclaimed Philadelphia entertainer Eddie Bruce pays tribute to the great Tony Bennett, on the eve of the icon’s 88th birthday.

incendio at the Mauch Chunk Opera HouseCapture a raging firestorm – that’s the music of Los Angeles-based Incendio!  At the heart of every song is the bold, romantic Spanish guitar, its timeless sound recast in powerful modern arrangements.  They create a polyrhythmic swirl of multiple Latin American music forms (boleros, cumbias, salsa, tango, mambo) and passionately combine them with Indian, Arabic and Celtic flavors.

The veteran songwriter/musicians knew the kind of inspired passion and energy they wanted to convey when they named their band in 1999. The Latin guitar world fusion sound created by guitarists Jim Stubblefield, Jean-Pierre Durand, and Liza Cabre’ has received international acclaim, and their reputation as a dazzling live act has spread.

On Saturday, August 2 Eddie Bruce, ably backed by the talented Tom Adams Trio, presents a heartfelt tribute to Tony Bennett, on the occasion of the great singer’s 88th birthday. Adams is a highly respected pianist, having performed with a host of legendary singers including Mel Torme, Petula Clark, Bette Midler, Eydie Gorme and Steve Lawrence – even pop singers such as Jewell.

Eddie Bruce Sings Tony Bennett at the Mauch Chunk Opera HouseAfter sold-out performances at New York’s Feinstein’s and the Metropolitan Room, Philadelphia’s Prince Music Theater’s Cabaret, and many other venues up and down the East Coast, Eddie Bruce brings “Bruce on Bennett: A Birthday Tribute,” to Jim Thorpe, PA.

Tickets for each show are only $20. Those attending both shows can attend the second show for half price by calling SoundCheck Records in downtown Jim Thorpe at 570-325-4009 or by visiting the Opera House for tickets on Friday from noon until 5 PM. You can also call the box office at 570-325-0249. Showtime for both nights is 8 PM.

incendio at the Mauch Chunk Opera HouseThe Weekend of August 1st and 2nd features two shows at the Mauch Chunk Opera House in downtown Jim Thorpe that you won’t find together anywhere else. Both will both be immensely enjoyable, they’re very different from each other, but similar in terms of virtuosity and both won’t cost you an arm and a leg.

Friday, August 1st features the world music ensemble Incendio, from Southern California, and led by the brilliance of their two lead Spanish guitarists. The first thought is that it’s flamenco, then you hear the overtones of Celtic, trance, classical, and New Age, and you can only conclude that it is a particularly absorbing, all-encompassing brand of world music.

It is particularly enjoyable in the relaxed space of the Opera House, with the delicacy and nuance of the sound heard as beautifully as it would be in a far bigger theater. While the skill level is there, the cost is most definitely not!

Eddie Bruce Performs the Tony Bennett Songbook at the Opera HouseCelebrate the 88th Birthday of a musical icon on Saturday, August 2nd! On the eve of the great Tony Bennett’s 88th birthday, Eddie Bruce and the Tom Adams Trio pay tribute to the music and magic of this American treasure.

Wish Mr. Bennett a Happy Birthday at the Opera House. This crowd-pleasing show, which is a favorite in New York City, Philadelphia, and the Jersey Shore, captures all of your favorite Tony Bennett classics, performed by the premier interpreter of Bennett’s music, Eddie Bruce, accompanied by the remarkable Tom Adams trio.

Fresh from appearances with the Philly Pops and the Ocean City Pops, you can see this show just as it heads to the Atlantic later in August!

Both terrific offerings appear at the Mauch Chunk Opera House. Tickets for each performance are only $20 and two-for-one for Carbon County residents. They’re available 24/7 on the Opera House website, http://www.mcohjt.com, by visiting SoundCheck Records in downtown Jim Thorpe from 10 AM to 9 PM, or by calling them at (570) 325-4009.

The Opera House is open on show days from noon to 5 PM, or you can call Monday through Friday at (570) 325-0249. Tickets are also available at the door when they open at 7 PM. Both shows begin at 8 PM.

 

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