High gas prices crimping your budget?

Hi, readers of the York Common Cents blog.

I’m working on a business story about how continuing high gas prices are leaving people with less money to spend on other things, like dining out, shopping and vacations.

I’m looking to talk to York County folks who are cutting back on their spending because of the high gas prices. I’m thinking the folks most affected are those with long commutes to work and retirees on a fixed income. But I’m looking to talk with anyone for whom this is a concern.

Please email me at ghaber@ydr.com, or call me at 771-2029 by Tuesday afternoon. Thanks for your help.

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CoWork155 to hold its next set of SkillSwap classes Aug. 11-16

Last month, I wrote about CoWork155 in downtown York launching a series of one-night, hands-on courses on things like how to make a pizza or sew a quilt.

The inaugural program was such a hit, organizers are bringing SkillSwap back for another round of classes Aug. 11-Aug. 16. This time, the offerings include classes on bicycle safety, event planning and how to mix the perfect cocktail. Check out CoWork’s155 website for the complete list and to register.


The classes are open to the public.

The unique thing about SkillSwap is that instead of paying an admission fee, participants exchange a good or service from a list of items the instructor said he or she is willing to accept. The swaps that instructors are seeking this time include a bouquet of wild flowers, a six-pack of beer and learning how juggle.


Posted in City of York, Do it yourself, Education, Entertainment, Gary Haber, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Arts have a large economic impact in York County


I had a chance last Friday (June 27) to attend some of the sessions at the first-ever Impact Arts & Culture Conference at York College. The event, organized by the Cultural Alliance of York County and York College, draw a crowd of about 140 people. The attendees were not just from York, but came from Lancaster and beyond.

One of the sessions I attended was on the economic impact of the arts in the southcentral Pennsylvania region.  The numbers are impressive.

In the Greater Harrisburg area, including York, more than $54.4 million was spent by nonprofit arts and culture groups and their audiences in fiscal year 2010, according to a study by Americans for the Arts, a Washington, D.C.-based organization.

A separate study shows that in York County alone, 3,778 people work in 771 businesses in what are called “the creative industries.”

The employment figure includes artists, actors and musicians and people who work behind the scenes for nonprofits like museums and theaters. The number also includes folks who work for for-profit, creative businesses like advertising, architecture and design firms.

Hannah Jacobson, research director for Americans for the Arts, told the audience that cultural tourism is a growing trend.  Tourists are traveling to destinations where they can browse art galleries, catch a live theater performance or attend a concert. Those visitors spend money when they come to town staying in hotels, eating in restaurants and shopping.

“People are interested in authentic experiences, and the arts and culture are such a big part of showing what our communities are about,” Jacobson said.





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Healthy World Cafe targeting early November opening

Healthy World Cafe, a nonprofit restaurant where patrons pay what they can afford, is targeting early November for the opening for its new location in downtown York.

The restaurant, which sources its products from local farms, will open for lunch Mondays through Fridays and for dinner on the first Friday of each month, said Liza Naylor, the cafe’s kitchen manager. The cafe will also offer catering, Naylor said.

Earlier this year, Healthy World Cafe inked a lease for ground floor space at 24 S. George Street. The restaurant currently serves lunch on the fourth Wednesday of the month at First Moravian Church at 41 N. Duke St. in York. The next lunch is scheduled for July 23.



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Tutoni’s to open for lunch starting July 7


Toni and Tony Calderon, left, with chef Scott Robinson, the team behind Tutoni’s restaurant in downtown York.

I had a chance to catch up by phone the other day with Toni Calderone, half of the husband-and-wife duo that runs Tutoni’s, the new farm-to-table Italian restaurant on North George Street in downtown York.

Tutoni’s, which opened May 21, has been open for dinner only. But Calderone shared with me that the restaurant will also open for lunch Monday through Friday starting July 7.

Calderone and her husband Tony Calderone also plan to start offering brunch on the second Saturday of each month timed to the monthly Second Saturday events held at Continental Square. The brunch, which will be a prix fixe menu, will start July 12.




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Anonymous tip leads to important story about protecting our loved ones

When I got back from vacation recently, I had an anonymous tip in my messages. A concerned citizen wanted us to note that a Spring Garden Township personal care home had its license revoked by the state.

He wanted to make sure that we were completely aware of the concerns he had for the residents there.

Inspections at personal care homes and other assisted living homes are available to search on the state Department of Public Welfare’s website. They’re readily available at any time, but often we don’t get releases notifying us of a change. And if a home has its license revoked and it is appealed, they can stay open.

So it could be difficult for people to know if the home at which their loved ones live is having any issues that could concern them.

Continue reading “Anonymous tip leads to important story about protecting our loved ones” »

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Manufacturers’ Association interim director wants to help publicize the group

I had a chance to catch up by phone the other day with Jack Bardol, the Manufacturers’ Association’s interim executive director.
Bardol made it clear he’s not looking to take the job on a permanent basis.
Bardol, 58, already has a busy Manchester Township consulting practice where he works with manufacturing clients exclusively.
Under his agreement with the manufacturers group, Bardol will spend about 60 hours a month on association business through the end of August. Bardol declined to say how much the assignment pays but he’s already spent time with the association’s staff and come away impressed, he said.

Continue reading “Manufacturers’ Association interim director wants to help publicize the group” »

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Harley-Davidson’s credit union to merge with White Rose Credit Union

The credit union for employees at Harley-Davidson Inc.’s Springettsbury Township manufacturing plant will merge into the larger White Rose Credit Union under a plan Pennsylvania banking regulators approved earlier this month.
The merger — between White Rose and HD York Federal Credit Union — is slated to occur on May 31, Debra Kauffman, White Rose’s president and CEO, said Thursday.
The two credit unions already know one another well.
White Rose employees have been staffing HD’s single branch at 3214 E. Market St. in Springettsbury Township since September when HD’s lone employee went out on medical leave, Kauffman said.
The merger, which federal credit union regulators approved in November, is part of a national trend of smaller credit unions joining up with larger ones to offer their customers more services.
Continue reading “Harley-Davidson’s credit union to merge with White Rose Credit Union” »

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Foodstruck brings foot traffic to York businesses

More than 8,500 people filled downtown York Friday night for the second Foodstruck event. When I read Christina Clarke’s (You probably know her as the owner of Sunrise Soap) comments on the YDR Facebook post below, I had to share it here because it talks about what the event did for business.

She wrote: “It was great to see downtown literally SWARMING!! The restaurants were all packed!!!! The shops on The Shops on North Beaver Street had a steady flow of people… and the overall mood was jovial and fun (the attitude: WHAT RAIN?) I saw nothing but patience, kindness, consideration and love among everyone I encountered. The foot traffic was amazing! Thank you everyone for coming downtown last evening — you literally got a taste of the unique and special things that are planned by people who are in LOVE with I Love York City !

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Old dog learns new tricks @NICAR14

In five months, I turn 39 years old. I wouldn’t consider myself old, but I’m not young either.

At no time has this fact been more clear than in past two days I’ve spent attending a computer-assisted reporting conference in Baltimore.

Many of the attendees appear to be younger than 30, but don’t let their age fool you. Many of those I’ve in the last 48 hours are some of the smartest and most dedicated journalists I’ve had the pleasure of meeting.

Yesterday, I spent most of day learning how to use digital maps to tell a story. The mapping mini-boot camp started at 9 a.m. and lasted till 5 p.m. At no time during the class did I wonder when the day-long session might end.

The class was fast paced.

I learned that a color-coded map embedded with photos and charts might be better tool to tell the tale of an election than a 15-inch story.

So far today, I’ve been to three sessions, with three more on tap.

I’ll let you know what else this old dog has learned.

Stay tuned.

Posted in Consumer issues, Do it yourself, Economic Outlook, Sean Adkins, Social Media, Your money | Leave a comment