Thursday, November 24, 2016

Contactos Mujeres Latina (Networking with Latin Women)

Photography by Paparazzi Paul

The Eastern Monroe Public Library in Stroudsburg, PA hosted The Association of Latin American Women's Social Networking event on Tuesday November 22nd. The gathering was held in the library's Edinger Community Room which proved to be a fitting place to hold it as a number of individuals from the local Latin American community provided a sense of camaraderie throughout the evening which was extended to those attending who were not of Hispanic decent. Conversations nurturing established acquaintances mingled with those planting new seed of friendships filled the room as Sylvia Torres - Piserchio took her place behind the podium to share her welcoming remarks along with information about the association.

Ms. Torres - Piserchio then introduced Christina Piserchio RN who provided blood pressure and blood sugar screenings throughout the evening and invited the company to partake of them in order to maintain their health. She was followed by Ms. Iris Martinez MS who is the Director of Hogar CREA International which is an 18 month treatment program designed to help individuals over the age of 18 to overcome drug addiction. She was followed to the podium by Tony Cox of Cruise Planners who spoke on the opportunities found in traveling abroad. Ms. Cox was followed by Alexa Sanchez of ERA One Source Realty who shared information on what her company had to offer the community. She was followed by Luis A. Echevarria of The Property Max Reality Group who helps individuals obtain mortgages and other needed items in order to purchase a home.

The conclusion of Mr. Echevarria's words led to the entrance of artist Froilan Kali Ramirez who offered his services to those in need of it. He was followed by David Good of The Good Project who seeks to preserve the life of South American Jungles and the indigenous people who inhabit them. He was followed by Margaret Rincon of Rincon Express who offers a Tags and Title Service for automobiles as well as assistance in those beginning a business. During Ms. Rincon's talk, she introduced two gentlemen who spoke in turn about the homeless individuals populating the area and her company's donate a book bag to help children living in poverty to cope better in school. They were followed by Alexa Bridgeman of Pocono Family Insurance who spoke on the many services her company provided through a variety of insurance policies.

It was soon after Ms. Bridgeman spoke did Ms. Torres - Piserchio come to the podium to introduce a woman who would tell her story relating to her experiences taking residence in the area. The woman could not speak English very well so her words were translated Ms. Torres - Piserchio. However, the substance of what she had to say wasn't found so much in the words she employed but in the expression, vocal tone, and her countenance. All of these combined to bring about a thoughtful listening to her story. It was after she spoke did Ms. Torres - Piserchio express her appreciation to those who were present and shared information about future events the association were planning to present.

It was at this point were the talks given transformed to conversations that included more information learned about what was revealed by the speakers. Tasty treats were consumed as delightfully as the words that were shared. You'll find more photographs taken during the Social Networking event held by The Association of Latin American Women on Tuesday November 22nd in the Contactos Mujeres Latina (Networking with Latin Women) Gallery at

The Association of Latin American Women (ALAW) was founded in 2016 in order to coordinate resources within the local communities to promote Latin American Culture. The association holds numerous events including workshops and seminars to assist in maneuvering through a predominately non Hispanic Culture (ie The United States). It was an informative and enjoyable evening which lent itself to broaden one's cultural horizons. You can learn more about The ALAW by exploring their Website at or their Facebook Page at

The Eastern Monroe Public Library (aka The Hughes Library) is located on N. 9th Street (aka route 611) in Stroudsburg, PA. The Hughes Library is the main branch of the Monroe County, PA library system which includes their Pocono Township Branch in Tannersville, PA and their Smithfield’s Branch in Marshalls Creek, PA. The library offers access to numerous books, DVDs, Audio Recordings, and cultural programs free to the public. To learn more information about the library and all the institution has to offer the community, please explore their Facebook Page at or their Website at

Monday, November 21, 2016

The Opening the Art of Origins

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

On Saturday November 19th, The Origins Gallery in Stroudsburg, PA sought to enhance the creative nature of those residing in the local community by holding an Open Studio during the Artists' Reception they held for their Open Studio and Arts Exhibition. A great number of people sat along the tables where pencils, brushes, paper, and other art related materials where placed in order to explore the boundaries of their imagination and go beyond its borders. The work of local artists were placed and on display throughout the gallery which contributed to their inspired endeavors as it did the conversation among those who enjoyed experiencing the images they discovered through their eyes and hearts.

Fascination with the art on display and the doings of those seated at the tables filled the modestly sized gathering until the appearance of Origin's Gallery Director, Jody Singer, whose very presence elevated the level of appreciation of all that was occurring throughout the venue. It was during this time did Mr. Singer welcome the crowd and shared news of what will be happening in the arts including those events taking place at the galley for the remainder of the year. It was after these revelations did he introduce the evening's musical guest.

It was with great pleasure among the gathering to see the return of Guitarist TC Carpenter to the Origins' Stage. The memories of his previous performance were not only rekindled through the music he shared but heightened by the sensory experience he conveyed through his delivery and interpretation of each composition. Mr. Carpenter shared a number of original compositions whose outstanding degree of quality compared well with those songs he sang that were created by other more established artists. You can learn more about TC Carpenter and his music by exploring his Facebook Page at

It was during Mr. Carpenter's performance did I take up some paper and coloring tools in order to expand my artistic horizons. I managed to create three images which received some fairly positive responses from the established artists I showed them to. I continue to appreciate their kind words and feel encouraged to explore this avenue of expression further. My experience brought to mind the meaningful purpose of the Open Studio concept which encourages those who perceive themselves as having little or no artistic abilities to discover what is lurking inside alongside experienced artists who lend their encouragement to the novice. Anyways, I completed my drawings just as Mr. Carpenter's performance was coming to an end and the gallery's famous art raffle was about to begin.

The many individuals who purchased raffle tickets throughout the evening eagerly eyed the pieces of paper between their fingers as the winning numbers were called out by Origin's Gallery Director, Jody Singer. The much coveted pieces donated for the event were held aloft by Nora Goodwin which made each item all the more desirable. A joy filled the room as the numbers signifying the winner were revealed and congratulatory sentiments were shared. It was after the final item was distributed did Mr. Singer speak upon the changes that are being planed for Origins before biding the gathering a fond farewell.

It was at this point was the crowd reminded of the gallery moving to a new location early in 2017. Mr. Singer then invited those present to take home books they would like to own from their free library in order to ease the gallery's transition from its present location to its new home. Many gathered around the shelves to select book from the literary genres they enjoy and took them home to explore their passages. It was soon after this did the venue's denizens bid each other adieu while looking forward to when they would gather again for the next event. You can view photographs taken during the Artists' Reception of the exhibit in The Opening the Art of Origins Gallery at

The Origins Gallery is a contemporary arts gallery who also offers classes and special events to the community. They're currently located on the lower level of The Gamers Edge Comics and Games Store at 580 Main St. in Stroudsburg, PA. The Open Arts Exhibition will be on display until December 14th. Their next events will be an acrylic painting workshop led by Maria Ferreris on Sunday November 27th and their Holiday Makers’ Market III scheduled for December 3rd and 4th. The next show to be on display will be their Black Canvas Exhibition II which will be their final one at their current venue. An Artists' Reception is scheduled for Saturday December 17th beginning at 6pm and all artists are invited to participate. The drop off dates are December 14th and 15th. You can learn more about The Origins Gallery including updates referring to the future of Origins and other news by exploring their Facebook Page at

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Singing in The Library

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

The Music Study Club of the Stroudsburgs brought together a sizable gathering of music lovers for their Come Sing with Us Program. The event was held at The Eastern Monroe Public Library in Stroudsburg, PA on Sunday November 13th and offered those who attended an opportunity to experience some songs written around 1916 in Celebration of the PA Federation of Music Club (PMFC) Centennial of which the Club of the Stroudsburgs is a part of. Song books were handed out so the gathering could lend their voices to the songs that were to be presented throughout the afternoon.

The afternoon began with some opening statements which expressed a number of welcoming and appreciative sentiments to those who were present. These words were followed by an invitation to join in the singing of the US National Anthem titled, “The Star-Spangled Banner” whose lyrics come from a poem titled, “Defence of Fort M'Henry” written by Francis Scott Key with music from a popular British song written by John Stafford Smith titled, “To Anacreon in Heaven” (or “The Anacreontic Song”) and was made the national anthem by a congressional resolution on March 3rd, 1931. This was followed by the singing of the song titled, “When Johnny Comes Marching Home” which was written during the American Civil War by the Irish-American band-leader Patrick Gilmore in 1863 under the pseudonym Louis Lambert for his sister Annie as she prayed for the safe return of her fiancé, Union Light Artillery Captain John O'Rourke, whom she married until 1875.

The event continued with some opening statements given by Linda Baumgardner whose voice students would perform a number of selections later in the program. This was followed by pianist Susan Stillo (who serves the club as its Recording Secretary) who issued an invitation to members of the audience to gather around the piano to sing. A number of the gathering did so and a number of songs from a bygone era found a new voice through those belonging to the participating audience members. Ms. Baumgardner returned after the singing in order to introduce Rafael Fernandez to the crowd who received a trophy in recognition of his musical talents.

It was after this ceremony did the remainder of Ms. Baumgardner's Voice Students share their talents in singing songs written by George M. Cohan, Victor Herbert, Jerome Kern, and others. The students were Brianna Merduri, Mary Wilke, Tabatha Berger, and Susan Stangland who were accompanied by pianist Priscilla Day (who serves the club as its Co-President and Federation Secretary). The delightful singing was followed by a talk given by Past President of the club, Susan Jordan, on her experience and the insights she gained through directing over 80 musical theater productions. The fascinating lecture was followed by some concluding words along with some cake and conversation in celebration of the PMFC) Centennial. It was a delicious way to end a wonderful afternoon of song. You’ll find more photographs taken during the concert in The Singing in The Library Gallery at

Susan Moore Jordan moved from Oak Ridge, TN to the Pocono Mountains in PA in 1971 and soon began a career in music. In 1977, Ms. Jordan help established The Pocono Lively Arts who presented a number of family orientated concert series and musical theater productions. She has written several Novels relating to her experiences in music and theater including those in her Carousel Trilogy titled, “How I Grew Up,” “Eli’s Heart,” and “You Are My Song.” Ms. Jordan has recently published a novel titled, “More Fog, Please” which recounts her 31 years of directing Community and High School Musicals. You can learn more about Susan Moore Jordan by exploring her Facebook Page at or her Website at

The Music Study Club of the Stroudsburgs was established in 1912 as an organization seeking to perform music and to serve musicians throughout the community. In addition to the offers already mention, Ruth Ann Rumbold serves as the club's Co-President and Vice President while Brenda Rundle serves as the club's Treasurer. The club holds monthly programs October through May with the exception of January with most being free to the public. The programs include The Annual NFMC Festival and competitions as well as events presented in schools, churches, and community related venues. You can learn more about The Music Study Club of the Stroudsburgs, it’s programs, all it has to offer the community, and how to participate by exploring their Website at

The Eastern Monroe Public Library (aka The Hughes Library) is located on N. 9th Street (aka route 611) in Stroudsburg, PA. The Music Study Club of the Stroudsburgs' Come Sing with Us Program took place in the Library's Edinger Community Room. The Hughes Library is the main branch of the Monroe County, PA library system which includes their Pocono Township Branch in Tannersville, PA and their Smithfield’s Branch in Marshalls Creek, PA. The library offers access to numerous books, DVDs, Audio Recordings, and cultural programs free to the public. To learn more information about the library and all the institution has to offer the community, please explore their Facebook Page at or their Website at

The Night of the Milford Art

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

As the dark of night descended upon a November day, I arrived in the town of Milford, PA on Saturday November 12th for their monthly Art After Dark Event. I've always enjoyed visiting this artsy mecca and the joy of my previous visitations was soundly echoed during this occasion. I had the opportunity of exploring the work presented in three galleries throughout the evening.

The late Autumnal chill that was in the air accompanied me as I moved from one gallery to another. The Golden Fish Gallery was my first destination and what a great pleasure it was to be greeted by John Longendorfer who opened the establishment with his son, Edwin, in 1997. It was after a time we engaged in some heartwarming conversation did the yearning to meander around the venue in order to experience the aesthetic wonders it held move me.

I was peering into the depths of three and two dimensional renderings when the sound of hammering caught my attention. It emanated from a room in which art work was being place upon its walls. I then discovered that an Artists' Reception was being prepared to showcase the work of young artists who live within and the surrounding areas of Milford. The beauty and diversity of the work had an underlining energy to it that derived from the abundance of the artists' youthful abilities to summon it.

From the vibrant colors circling the imagination of the viewer in several abstracts to the shadows found in a number of black and white photographic pieces which brought the profound sense of realism through the multi-layered realms of light and dark to the viewer, the exhibit held a fascination to all who visited the gallery which remained with each fortunate individual for quite some time afterwards. It was good to discover these pieces and to chat with some of the artist who created them. It was after spending some time at The Golden Fish Gallery did I venture across the street to begin visiting more galleries that offered their aesthetic gifts to the community.

An Artist's Reception The Stone Bear Tattoo Gallery was held for a Solo Exhibition that featured the work of Jesse Clemente The shapes, colors, and emotion placed within the composition of the abstract pieces attuned the viewer to the mind blending elements that are communally conveyed. A rawness can be felt from each canvas touched by Mr. Clemente's creativity that weaves in and out of the overly sophisticated senses allowing the primal naturalisms of life to emerge from the psyche.

Although the two dimensional work Mr. Clemente presented at the Stone Bear Tattoo Gallery was outstanding, he is better known, at least by me, for the sculpted pieces which include on titled, “Keith Bearing” that he created for the recently held Black Bear Film Festival. The Jesse Clemente Exhibition is on display at The Stone Bear Tattoo Gallery (formerly known as "Moon Gravel Arts") which is owned by Jim Palmer who is the main Tattoo Artist and serves as the President of Operations. He is joined by El Denman who serves as the Vice President of Operations and maintains the establishment's presense on Social Media and Tattoo Artist Jen Lee.

It was after some time at the Stone Bear did I travel down the street to enter The ARTery Gallery to partake of the work the venue had on display. The artists featured for their monthly exhibit were Bill Rabsey and Liza J. Smith - Simpson Mr. Rabsey's sculpted pieces were created from found objects which expanded the imagination of the viewer through their shapes and unique qualities. Ms. Smith - Simpson's deftly created paintings touched upon a number of aesthetic disciplines and mediums ranging from soothing depictions of landscapes to abstract designs that challenged the perceptions of the viewer and thereby opening the subconscious to the flight paths of their imaginations. The work of both artists complimented each other's endeavors while simultaneously creating an aesthetic schism between their individual approaches.

The ARTery Gallery has a number of constructed barriers throughout the venue upon which the work they display are hung. Walking through these corridors, the visitor comes upon each grouping with a wonderful sense of discovery. A plethora of pieces shared the gallery with Mr. Rabsey and Ms. Smith - Simpson. They included the extraordinary works of Alvin Rosser, Madeline Tully, Dawn J. Benko, John Capanna, Harriet Cotterill, Ron Demuth, Randall FitzGerald, Rosealind Hodgkins, Kate Horan, Carol Mainardi, June Ponte, and the gallery's curator, Marie Liu Their work not only enhanced that of the featured artists, but the content and quality of the conversations that were inspired by Mr. Rabsey's and Ms. Smith - Simpson's endeavors were profoundly affected as well.

It was after some time did I leave the gallery and the town of Milford to journey back home. My visits to this little but vibrant community of artists never fail to bring an inspired joy to my being. The art, as always, was wonderful to explore and the congeniality of those I met re touched my being. The exhibitions on presented at The Golden Fish Gallery, The Stone Bear Tattoo Gallery, and The Artery Gallery are scheduled to be on display until December 5th. The Art After Dark Event takes place the Second Saturday of each month. The next event is scheduled for Saturday December 10th beginning at 6pm. The featured artists for the month of December are yet to be announced. In the meantime, you'll find more photographs taken during my November meanderings in The Night of the Milford Art Gallery at

Tuesday, November 08, 2016

Does a Bear party at the Phoenix?

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

As memories inspired by the 17th Annual Black Bear Film Festival (BBFF) lingered in the souls of all who attended the two day love fest for the art of film, a special Appreciation Party for those who volunteered their time and talents to the endeavor was held at The Phoenix House in Dingmans Ferry, PA on Sunday November 6th. Paintings of bears that were created by students attending local schools were hung outside the home to greet those who entered it. Once inside, the magnificence and splendor of the festival that maintained the homegrown quality of the town it was held in (Milford, PA) was echoed in the décor and ambiance of the abode where the party was held. Sculptures and wall art filled the eyes of the many visitors whose visions were released from the inner sanctuaries of their beings in order to embark upon a joyous visual journey of the senses.

However, the Optical Senses were not alone in the stimulation of awareness that was prevalent throughout the home. The delights found in the senses of taste and smell also flowed among the denizens of the home as delicious culinary treats were provided by the abode's owner, Doug Cosh, whose talents were recently recognized in the Milford Magazine. Conversation inspired by memories abound as those who attended made new friends while rekindling friendships established throughout the years. Door prizes were distributed among those who were given a ticket as they entered the premises and, after the festival's Executive Director Will Voekel and Volunteer Coordinator, Carol Needleman, shared their welcoming sentiments that included their deep sense of appreciation for all the gifts the volunteers bring to the festival, a number of mugs and hats with the festival logo upon them were joyfully accepted by their recipients. I got a hat. Yay.

More food, wine, memories, and love was shared throughout the remainder of the time spent together until the party came to its conclusion and everyone bade their farewells to one another. Yet, a reflection of reunion were embedded in their adieus as the hopeful certainty of coming together for next year's Black Bear Film Festival took root within their hearts. I shared their desire to meet again for the next festival and I hope to see you, too. You'll find more photographs taken during The 17th Annual Black Bear Film Festival's Volunteer Appreciation Party in The Does a Bear Party in the Phoenix Gallery at

The Black Bear Film Festival (BBFF) was established in 2000 and takes place during the third weekend of October. The 17th Annual Black Bear Film Festival was held from Friday October 14th to Sunday October 16th at The Milford, PA Theater and The Pike County Public Library The Volunteer Appreciation Party was held at The Phoenix House in Dingmans Ferry, PA on Sunday November 6th and is located next to The Phoenix Antiques, Crafts, and Gifts Both properties are owned by Doug Cosh. BBFF is a non-profit organization dedicated to presenting exceptional independent films to the public, hold various events to celebrate the art and craft of film making, and partner with schools to inspire students to become filmmakers and aficionados of film. BBFF is run by volunteers and is sustained by members, sponsors, advertisers, and donors.

The BBFF Board of Directors consist of Will Voekel (Executive Director), Amy Bridge and Amy Eisenberg (Co - Presidents), Valerie Brairton (Secretary), and Tim Smith (Treasurer) along with BBFF Board Members Lenore Fasula, Amy Ferris, Bob Keiber, Timothy Moreland, Carol Needleman, and Jerry Weinstock. The BBFF also has an Advisory Board whose members consist of Babara Buchanan, Tamara Chant, Ken Ferris, Brian Gorman, Alan Kaplan, Wendy Stuart Kaplan, Karen Kelly, Maryanne Monte, Matt Osterberg, Sean Stub, and David Wallace. Many of these individuals serve as members and/or chairs on several of the committees that help organize and maintain the festival.

In addition to presenting films and offering insights into the art form, BBFF invites artists to participate in their Artful Bear Project in which sculptures of bears in various garb are created, revealed to the public during an Artful Bears Community Picnic, placed in front of business and other location throughout the town of Milford, PA, and are sold during a Silent Auction that takes place during the festival. The Black Bear Film Festival also offers workshops throughout the year to enhance the desire of filmmakers in their understanding of the art. Their next workshop is titled, “Script to Screen: Film Making for Young Adults” (Ages 14 - 18) led by Susan Barry, John M. White, and other members of The Saturday Afternoon Pictures’ Production Team on Saturday November 19th beginning at 1pm at The Pike County Public Library in Milford, PA. The BBFF invites the public to share their talents as volunteers for the festival. Their offices are located at 109 W. Catharine St in Milford, PA. Many positions are open and waiting for you to lend your unique talents to. You can learn more about The Black Bear Film Festival by exploring their Facebook Page at or their Website at