Kagel named head of Chester County emergency services |Dec 18, 2014

WEST CHESTER >> The Chester County Commissioners on Monday named a protege of the late director of the Department of Emergency Services, Ed Atkins, to succeed his mentor.

No tax hike in 2015 Chester County budget |Dec 18, 2014

WEST CHESTER >> The Chester County Commissioners on Monday approved a $522 million 2015 budget that decreases overall spending and keeps property tax rates the same, while still providing what the commissioners said was a high quality of government services to residents, from courts to parks and in between.

Lower Frederick man convicted of possessing child porn |Dec 18, 2014

NORRISTOWN >> A Lower Frederick man potentially faces jail time after he was convicted of possessing child pornography on his home computer.

Military News |Dec 18, 2014

Christopher Kasker, a 1992 Phoenixville Area High School graduate, was promoted to lieutenant colonel by the Secretary of the Army John M. McHugh during a ceremony at the Pentagon on Nov. 3.

Ex-boxer ‘The Gladiator’ admits to scuffle with Lower Providence police |Dec 18, 2014

NORRISTOWN >> A professional boxer who appeared in arenas as “The Gladiator” stood in a legal arena on Tuesday addressing charges he used his skills out of the ring during a scuffle with Lower Providence police.

No public comments on proposed $371M Montgomery County budget |Dec 18, 2014

NORRISTOWN >> The Montgomery County commissioners set two different times on Thursday for the public to make comments about the proposed 2015 budget, and no one came.

Stahley sentenced to life in prison for killing girlfriend |Dec 18, 2014

NORRISTOWN >> Determining a Skippack teenager continues to pose a danger to society, a judge has sentenced him to life imprisonment, without the possibility of parole, for fatally stabbing his girlfriend.

‘Fun-loving, kind-hearted’ girl recalled through tears by emotional family and friends |Dec 18, 2014

NORRISTOWN >> A grieving Jennifer Siller will never forget the final moments she shared with her teenage daughter, Julianne.

Brothers receive ‘A Hero’s Welcome’ |Dec 18, 2014

ROYERSFORD >> U.S. Army Spc4 Ryan Klick and Sgt. Bradley Klick were given “A Hero’s Welcome” in Royersford Saturday afternoon. The brothers returned home after serving a tour of duty in Afghanistan.

Congress: Gerlach last-ditch effort to pass conservation tax break falls short |Dec 17, 2014

WASHINGTON >> Despite winning a majority of votes in the House of Representatives, the last-ditch effort by U.S. Rep. Jim Gerlach to make permanent a federal tax break for donating land for conservation fell just 13 votes shy of passage Thursday.

Volunteers plan charity gingerbread auction |Dec 17, 2014

PHOENIXVILLE >> ’Tis the season of giving, sharing and baking. On Sunday, Dec. 21, combine all three at Phoenixville’s charity Gingerbread House Silent Auction following “It’s a Wonderful Life” at The Colonial Theatre.

Democratic leaders balk at Kichline’s appointment |Dec 17, 2014

WEST CHESTER >> Chester County Democratic leaders are taking issue with the recent appointment of Michelle Kichline as county commissioner, calling it a contradiction and requesting she step aside when the term ends.

Kichline sworn in as new Chester County commissioner |Dec 17, 2014

WEST CHESTER >> When you are an office holder in a place as old as Chester County (332 years and counting), the numbers pile up, as Michelle Haris Kichline’s swearing in as the new Republican county commissioner on Tuesday demonstrates.

Manhunt on for Pennsburg man suspected in Montgomery County shooting rampage |Dec 16, 2014

MONTGOMERY COUNTY >> A Pennsburg man who authorities said went on a killing spree early Monday morning, slaying his ex-wife and five of her family members in three Montgomery County communities, remained at large as of press time Monday night after SWAT teams surrounded two residences where he was thought to be holed up and a police manhunt intensified as the day progressed.

Bradley Stone, suspected killer of 6, found dead |Dec 16, 2014

LOWER PROVIDENCE >> The manhunt for suspected mass murderer Bradley Stone has ended with his apparent suicide.

DA: Six dead, search continues for suspected gunman in connected Montgomery County shootings |Dec 15, 2014

PENNSBURG >> Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Ferman has identified the man who allegedly went on a shooting spree this morning as Bradley William Stone and announced that the death toll has risen to six.

From ashes of firebird vandalism, Phoenixville provides example to other communities |Dec 13, 2014

Last Saturday, I woke up to a phone call at 7:30 in the morning from photographer and Phoenixville area staple Barry Taglieber.

Chaplin’s to host ‘Nightmare Before Christmas’ short film fest |Dec 13, 2014

SPRING CITY >> Chaplin’s Music Café is hosting an event that will feature short films that have a horror/thriller twist on Saturday, Dec. 20, from 7 to 10:30 p.m.

The Loft at Landis Creek Golf Club to host Brunch with Santa |Dec 12, 2014

The Loft at Landis Creek Golf Club (formerly Limerick Golf Club) has announced that it will host Brunch with Santa, Sunday, Dec. 21, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The cost is $19.95 for adults, $9.95 for children 12 and under.

Mayor vetoes vote to dissolve rec board, final vote scheduled for Dec. 23 |Dec 12, 2014

PHOENIXVILLE >> Mayor Michael Speck vetoed a vote by borough council to dissolve the Recreation Board at Tuesday night’s meeting.

SEI holds inaugural women’s conference |Dec 11, 2014

OAKS >> SEI Chairman and CEO Alfred P. West, Jr., speaks to an audience at SEI’s inaugural Women’s Network Leadership Summit at the company’s headquarters Dec. 3, designed to help women grow personally and make an impact professionally.

Schwenksville Elementary collects supplies to stock local pantry |Dec 11, 2014

SCHWENKSVILLE >> Thanks to the generosity of staff, students and families, Schwenksville Elementary was able to collect and deliver over 30 boxes and bags of food, hats/gloves and basic care items to the Daily Bread Community Food Pantry! The volunteers at the pantry were very thankful to receive the donations.

Washington Memorial Chapel in Valley Forge to host Caroling at the Carillon |Dec 11, 2014

Washington Memorial National Carillon at Washington Memorial Chapel in Valley Forge will host Caroling at the Carillon, a Community Christmas Carol Sing-Along, on Sunday, Dec. 21 at 7 p.m. Sing your favorite Christmas carols accompanied by Doug Gefvert playing the 58-bell carillon.

Casino revives Valley Forge Music Fair |Dec 11, 2014

UPPER MERION >> So you thought you said farewell to the fair nearly 20 years ago?

O’Grady’s to host fundraiser for Phoenixville firefighter battling brain cancer |Dec 11, 2014

PHOENIXVILLE >> Dale Sims and his wife, Barbara, met by accident.

Pets of the Week |Dec 11, 2014

Julie (dog) Julie is a very sweet 3-year-old beagle. She loves exploring outside, going wherever her nose takes her, and she is good with children and other dogs. Julie is a great cuddler, house- and crate-trained and up-to-date on her shots.

Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Community Realty strengthens Pennsylvania presence |Dec 11, 2014

Better Homes and Gardens® Real Estate today announced the addition of Community Realty to its franchise network. At the helm of the newly formed brokerage are co-owners John Colarusso, Phoenixville entrepreneur, and leading Phoenixville real estate sales professional, Jennifer Daywalt.

Calendar of Events |Dec 11, 2014

Ongoing Christmas Village: Visit the Christmas Village at Westridge Estates, 970 Township Line Road, Phoenixville. See over 150 lighted porcelain houses in a late-19th Century setting, including a city, farmland, amusement park, ski mountain resort, New England countryside and seaport and Alpine village.

Think About It: The Good Old Days |Dec 10, 2014

“We get so soon old and so late smart.”

DIY Fame: Phoenixville should invest in its burgeoning music scene |Dec 10, 2014

I’ve been hanging around Phoenixville for over 10 years and living here for a month, and if there’s one thing that defines the town, it’s music.

Zogby: Time for Wolf to end the ‘blame game’ and govern |Dec 10, 2014

No amount of feigned astonishment at a pending $1.9 billion budget deficit will erase the fact that this situation has existed for years and will only worsen without needed reforms.

ABC to XYZ in Foods: Christmas Trees and Snow Storms |Dec 10, 2014

We always kept our Christmas tree up and decorated until after the New Year. Usually the day after everything was put away it snowed, much to my mother’s dismay. She liked to have snow for holidays, and usually it didn’t snow until January.

Schuylkill Valley Sports holds grand opening celebration in Oaks |Dec 10, 2014

OAKS >> Schuylkill Valley Sports opened its 20th retail store location Saturday at the Oaks Shopping Center at 1570 Egypt Road.

Shoppers enjoy Black Friday sales at the Philadelphia Premium Outlets in Limerick |Dec 9, 2014

LIMERICK >> Christmas carols could be heard on speakers, decorations were everywhere and deals could be found around every corner as shoppers braved the cold air and bustled through the outdoor corridors of the Philadelphia Premium Outlets on Thanksgiving night.

Reporter Frank Otto sums up life in the news business |Dec 9, 2014

Journalism is the only life I’ve known as an adult. I started at the Delaware County Daily Times as a full-time intern when I graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 2011. Just a few months after that summertime internship ended, I found myself at 24 N.

Faith Bible Fellowship to present live nativity in Spring City |Dec 9, 2014

Faith Bible Fellowship Church, Bridge Street and Pennhurst Road, Spring City, will host a live outdoor nativity from 7 to 9 p.m. on Dec. 21. The skit will be presented every 15 minutes, snow, rain or fair weather.

Petsmart Collegeville hosts Holiday Adoption Marathon |Dec 9, 2014

Three local rescues are participating in a Holiday Adoption Marathon in December at Petsmart Collegeville, 300 Waterloop Lane, Collegeville, PA 19426 (Providence Town Center shopping complex). Stray Cat Blues, Inc.

Cops: Teen breaks into East Pikeland home in pursuit of beer |Dec 9, 2014

EAST PIKELAND >> Police have charged a Phoenixville man after a neighbor saw him enter a house on Crestview Drive on Dec. 1.

Ex-Royersford man gets lengthy state sentence for child sex abuse |Dec 9, 2014

NORRISTOWN >> Just before being sentenced to a lengthy stay in a state prison, the former Royersford man convicted of molesting a young girl in his care over a two year period maintained his innocence.

Animal Medical Center in Trappe donates ‘Santa money’ to senior dogs and cats |Dec 9, 2014

TRAPPE >> In dog years they’re both over 70.

Teachers’ Unions: The common roadblock to reform |Dec 9, 2014

From Philadelphia to York to the Pittsburgh suburbs, parents and taxpayers are looking to improve public education without breaking the bank. But there’s a common roadblock standing in their way: Teachers’ unions are consigning students to some of the worst-performing schools in the state — all to retain their iron grip on power.

Voters call for clarity: IRS should listen |Dec 9, 2014

Nonprofit political activity is at a crossroads. Nonprofits have come under criticism from some on the left for spending too much dark money to influence politics, while some on the right critique the IRS for subjecting certain groups applying for nonprofit status to increased scrutiny based on their names.

Parkerford Baptist Church welcomes new senior pastor |Dec 9, 2014

On Monday, Dec. 1, Parkerford Baptist Church welcomed their new senior pastor, Rev. Robert E. Davalt II. After several years without a senior Pastor, the congregates of Parkerford Baptist Church unanimously voted to have a senior pastor with a vision and hope for the future.

Couple with Phoenxville ties featured in new film |Dec 6, 2014

Director Matthew Bonifacio and his wife Julianna Gelinas Bonifacio discovered the hard way that simultaneously planning a wedding and shooting a movie can be a demanding proposition.

Phoenixville firebird burned by vandals; festival still on |Dec 6, 2014

PHOENIXVILLE >> Sometime last night, unknown vandals set fire to the wooden phoenix statue in Friendship Field that was to burn tonight as the culmination of the borough’s 11th annual Firebird Festival.

Phoenixville community rises to set off new Phoenix bonfire statue after arson |Dec 6, 2014

PHOENIXVILLE >> Despite the destruction of the 30-foot wooden Phoenix statue early in the day by vandals, the spirit of the community still burned brightly at the 11th annual Firebird Festival Saturday night.

Spring City Karate celebrates 40 years |Dec 5, 2014

SPRING CITY >> The Spring City Karate School is celebrating 40 years of teaching students the art of Karate, and looking forward to many more.

Philadelphia woman gets probation for bringing heroin to Graterford prison |Dec 5, 2014

NORRISTOWN >> A Philadelphia woman accused of bringing heroin to Graterford prison in the fall of 2013 was sentenced to one year of probation after pleading guilty to a pair of misdemeanors in the case.

Hallelujah! Ursinus performs Handel’s ‘Messiah’ for the 77th year |Dec 5, 2014

COLLEGEVILLE >> For many people, the holidays mean celebrating traditions. At Ursinus College, that means performing Handel’s “Messiah” in its entirety. The school has produced a concert featuring this famous classical piece for the past 76 years.

Firefighters recognized at Upper Providence Supervisors’ meeting |Dec 5, 2014

UPPER PROVIDENCE >> Upper Providence Fire Chief Joshua Overholt presented officials of the four fire companies that support township properties with annual volunteer member incentive checks.