Around Town: The EPIC Awards, Pierogi Festival and anticipating Riverfest


What’s your definition of epic?

According to our friends at Merriam-Webster, it means “heroic” or “extending beyond the usual or ordinary, especially in size and scope.”

All things were epic Tuesday night at the Kirby Center for the Creative Arts on the campus of Wyoming Seminary as the Greater Wilkes-Barre Chamber of Commerce hosted its annual EPIC (Extraordinary People Inspiring Community) Awards.

There was Innovator of the Year Will Beekman of the F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts – a formidable leader honored for his work driving the downtown Wilkes-Barre theater’s continuous growth.

Also, Alison Zurawski from Community Bank N.A. was recognized for her countless acts of volunteerism locally.

And, Kathleen Dunsmuir of PNC Bank, won the prestigious ATHENA Award as an inspirational female leader in the banking industry.

These are people to admire as they’re serving as mentors, role models and so much more to young people in our area.

We need more of these types to continue bettering our community.

Events like the EPIC Awards and others as neighborhood-centric as Edwardsville’s recent Pierogi Festival, serve a purpose around town.

Held at John J. Hopkins Memorial Park on High Street, the Pierogi Festival was filled with vendors last weekend: crafters, jewelers and, of course, food purveyors.

When I was there last Friday, folks were lined up to pet goats and other animals. Children especially seemed to be enjoying themselves.

While I appreciate a petting zoo and small businesses being showcased, for me the festival was all about the pierogi.

Homemade or frozen, a pierogi is a pierogi to me (I’m not the most discerning eater). I just love dough wrapped around a delicious cheese.

If you had fun at the pierogi fest like I did, then consider RiverFest, the free, three-day festival that celebrates natural resources and educates about the environment. It’s coming up Friday and runs through Sunday, June 24.

It opens at 5 p.m. Friday in Nestbitt Park in Kingston with live music from Rockology Music Academy and a tribute to Dave Matthews/Tim Reynolds.

I haven’t attended this in years, but I’m blocking off time this year.

All sorts of activities will take place, like guided hikes, pony rides, kayaking, music, a bounce house and the event finale: dragonboat racing.

Join me for an “epic” weekend along the river.

But, if you can’t make it, no worries. I’m sure I’ll see you around town soon.

Mike McGinley is the Times Leader Media Group’s major accounts executive. Reach him at [email protected] or 570-704-3945.

Mike McGinley is the Times Leader Media Group’s major accounts executive. Reach him at [email protected] or 570-704-3945.