Doctors at UPMC held a press briefing yesterday to announce who will get the Pfizer and Moderna Coronavirus vaccines first once the expected doses are received. Dr. Graham Snyder, UPMC medical director of infection prevention and hospital epidemiology said, front line workers would have the first opportunity to receive the series of two shots if they choose, since the vaccination is not a requirement at UPMC at this time. Snyder said UPMC will be able to store the “thousands” of doses of Pfizer in the freezers and will expect Moderna vaccines to arrive following FDA approval for use outside of clinical trials in the US. Even with the vaccine, UPMC doctors reminded the public that mask wearing is still needed. And that the general public will probably not see a vaccination until later in the spring.
Montoursville and South Williamsport have made the decision to go to remote learning through the end of the year with both schools reporting positive COVID tests that have forced school officials to change the models of instruction for the rest of 2020. Montoursville high school students will be full remote, but students without internet connectivity can reserve a seat to go to the school building and free meals will be available today through December 22nd from 11:30 til 1pm weekdays in the high school lobby. Montoursville will return to school January 4th. The Southside district k-12 will be full remote through January 8th with special needs students still in person learning without disruption. Free hot meals are available at South Williamsport’s high school main entrance 11am til 12:30pm. According to the Sun Gazette, schools will continue to monitor state health guidelines as decisions are made for 2021.
Free parking is back again for the holiday season in the Central Business District thanks to a decision by the Williamsport Parking Authority. According to the Sun Gazette, the authority works with the Williamsport Business Association to provide free parking Monday through Friday starting at 3pm through the evening for its on-street metered and parking lots. Free parking will be available for this weekend’s Catch the Spirit shopping experience Friday afternoon through 8pm Saturday with some merchants open Sunday. Kids can even look for Santa downtown on Saturday around 5pm.
Even with the Farm show in Harrisburg going virtual this year, the resurgence of COVID has effected the ability to have the Butter Sculpture for 2021. Typically an artistic sculpture made from Pennsylvania Dairy butter is highlighted to show the importance the dairy industry is to the state economy, but the annual feature has been cancelled. According to Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding, the 105th Pennsylvania Farm Show can be followed on Facebook and Instagram from January 9-16, 2021.
A man from Elkland who police say broke into a Tioga County home and held a woman against her will, was captured after they received a 911 call about the incident, only arriving to find the suspect locked in a bathroom of the home. Pennsylvania State Police at Mansfield said 24 year old Shane Bisel barricaded himself and a victim inside someone else’s home on Legion Heights Road in Elkland and once he became trapped in the bathroom, the victim called the police, who contacted the homeowners who arrived and unlocked the house around 5:30 on November 30th. Bisel was charged with one felony count of burglary and one count each misdemeanor of criminal mischief and criminal trespass and is in Tioga County Prison.
Police are still investigating the cause of a fire that occurred Monday in Jersey Shore. According to the Sun Gazette, the assistant fire chief at Independent Hose Voluntary Fire Co said the fire broke out about 8pm in the front half of a Smith Street property, but the couple who lived in the home was not there at the time of the fire. A few of the family’s pets were able to be rescued, but no one else was harmed in the blaze. Citizen’s Hose Station 45, Nippenose Valley Volunteer Fire Company, Avis Fire Company from Clinton County and Woodward Township Volunteer Fire Company assisted and left the property after 11pm.
Lycoming County has reported 65 new cases of COVID, Northumberland has 79, Montour has 40 new cases , Clinton County reports 37, Union has 35 new cases, Tioga County 36, Snyder has 33 new cases. There are over 5,400 statewide hospitalizations, including over 1,100 in the ICU and over 600 on ventilators. Tuesday, the state Department of Health confirmed 10,170 new statewide cases – a new record – and 169 new deaths
The city of Williamsport has loans available for businesses with less than 100 employees that operate within the city and show need for assistance to overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing due to COVID. According to the Sun Gazette, Mayor Derek Slaughter said amounts from 5 thousand to 50 thousand dollars are available for those businesses who qualify, but they need to apply. Businesses can use the funds to pay any expenses that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. Details can be found at www.cityofwilliamsport.org
Ravens beat the Cowboys 34-17
“The Game” won’t be played for the first time in 102 years, Michigan cancelled its game against Ohio State due to COVID. The cancellation of this game puts Ohio State at five total games played this season, which is under the threshold put forth by the Big Ten conference to compete in the conference championship game against Northwestern.