Northampton Press

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Theater Review: ‘Billy Elliot’ dances to success for Civic reopening

Thursday, October 18, 2018 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

“Billy Elliot The Musical” is a multi-layered show that has a bit of everything: family conflict, single parenthood, politics, labor strife, mentor and student, elder-care problems, boxing and ballet.

It’s an alphabet-soup mix of themes that would challenge any community theater, much less a troupe returning to its main stage for the first time in about a year to open a renovated and restored new space.

Jumping for joy: Lehigh Valley premiere of Elton John musical, ‘Billy Elliot,’ reopens restored 19th St. Theatre

Thursday, October 11, 2018 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

When William Sanders looked around to select the play for the reopening of Civic Theatre of Allentown’s $5.5-million renovation and restoration of its historic Nineteenth Street Theatre, he needed to look no further than his favorite musical.

“Billy Elliot.”

“Billy Elliot” premiered in London’s West End in 2005 and was nominated for nine Laurence Olivier Awards, receiving four, including best new musical.

Movie Review: ‘Smallfoot’ small

Thursday, October 11, 2018 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

“Smallfoot” is “Frozen” without the ice-skating.

And also without Olaf.

“Smallfoot” has gorgeous animation of snow-laden landscapes of mountains and trees. The detail of artistry is impressive. For example, the hair on Migo, a Yeti (voiced by Channing Tatum) is incredible, as is the animation of the face, eyes, mouth and physical movements of the character.

Lehigh costs detailed at Act 34 hearing

Wednesday, October 10, 2018 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Local News

District expected to pay $2.5 million annually for 20 years for new school

Financing of the proposed Lehigh Elementary School is expected to cost Northampton Area School District approximately $2.5 million annually for 20 years.

Financial details of the elementary school project were part of a 55-minute Act 34 public hearing, held Oct. 8 in the cafeteria of Northampton Area High School.

One district resident, a Lehigh Township official, spoke at the hearing.

NASD gets school security grants

Wednesday, October 10, 2018 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Local News

$44,000 funding will be used for training, walkie-talkies, lockdown doors

Northampton Area School District has received two grants totaling nearly $44,000 — and is applying for a third — to improve school security.

The grants are one aspect of the NASD administration’s efforts to enhance safety in school buildings and campuses for faculty, students and families.

The measures include school-entrance security improvements, equipment for security personnel and possible additional district police, with the goal of having an officer at each school.

The grants and school-safety measures were discussed at the Oct. 8 NASD Board of Education meeting.

Movie Review: Running out the ‘Clock’

Friday, October 5, 2018 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Focus

You’ve heard the term “clock-watcher.” It’s when an employee has his or her eye on the clock on the wall at work and his or her mind on the door. He or she is deemed a “clock-watcher.”

The clock on the wall is “in” the wall in “The House With A Clock In Its Wall” and the eyes of Uncle Jonathan (Jack Black); his nephew, Lewis (Owen Vaccaro), and the uncle’s platonic friend, Florence (Cate Blanchett), are trying to watch the clock, if they could only find it. This is not from lack of trying. At one point, Lewis is punching a mantle clock, but not “the” clock.

Act 34 hearing set for Oct. 8

Wednesday, October 3, 2018 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in School

A detailed preview of the $35.7 million Lehigh Elementary School project will be presented at an Act 34 public hearing 5:30 p.m. Oct. 8 in the cafeteria of Northampton Area High School, 1619 Laubach Ave., Northampton.

Copies of the Act 34 booklet are available for review on the school district website, (click on the second Spotlight story); the administration building, 2014 Laubach Ave.; and Northampton Area Public Library, 1615 Laubach Ave.

LV house sales rebound, up 4.7 percent in August

Friday, September 28, 2018 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Business Showcase

Closed sales rebounded at the conclusion of the house sales summer season, increasing 4.7 percent in August, the first increase in closed sales in 2018 since January.

Houses were only on the market, on average, for one month in August.

According to the Greater Lehigh Valley Realtors (GLVR) latest report, released Sept. 14, the percentage of closed sales increased in August, reversing a sixth-straight-month decline, up 4.7 percent to 907, compared to 866 closed sales in August 2017.

NASD releases comprehensive plan

Wednesday, September 26, 2018 by PAUL WILLISTEIN in Local News

Five-year proposal created by administration, staff, community members

The District Level Comprehensive Plan 2019-23 is available for public review on the Northampton Area School District website,, and at district school buildings and the Northampton Area Public Library, 1615 Laubach Ave.

“Our comprehensive plan is a plan put together by our district community,” Lydia Hanner, NASD director of curriculum and instruction, announced at the Sept. 24 board of education meeting.