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Spring 2016

Downtown Hazleton Designated as DCED Main Street community
We are happy to announce that our application for the City of Hazleton to become designated as a PA Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Keystone Community “Main Street” designation was awarded in February. This is a five-year designation that will be in effect through February 2021. The Downtown Hazleton Alliance for Progress is serving as the administering organization responsible for implementing the revitalization program.
Designation as a Main Street community comes with several economic benefits. Among these include priority consideration under several DCED programs, including the Keystone Communities grant and loan programs, tax credit opportunities for private businesses that partner with our organization to invest in community and economic development programs via the Neighborhood Assistance Program, and Enterprise Zone tax credits for private businesses that invest in redevelopment projects within the downtown district. These are in addition to tax benefits for certain types of new businesses withing the designated Keystone Innovation Zone (KIZ) boundary, which encompasses most of the Broad Street Corridor. For more information about these programs visit:
Currently there are only 20 formally designated “Main Street” communities in the Commonwealth (Hazleton now being one, and the only one within Luzerne County). These are viewed with high regard because they have been able to show evidence of strong organization and partnerships, including a well-articulated mission and vision, a plan for financial sustainability through the five year designation period, and established and agreed-upon goals and strategies related to revitalization priorities.
City Arts Center and Park Updates
Hemmler & Camayd Architects continue to make progress on the design of the City Arts Center. City Council recently approved a deed of easement for pedestrian access along the east side of the City Park property to provide for a handicap accessible entrance to be located off of the west side of the building. We are hopeful that construction can begin late summer or early fall of this year.

Phase One construction of the park wrapped up last month when the lighting was installed along Laurel Street, and two new pedestrian lamps along Broad Street. We are now awaiting word on pending grants, which are needed to fund Phase Two. We also recently submitted a new grant request to DCNR to help cover these costs.
National Penn Celebrates Community Commitment
National Penn Bank (now merged with BB&T) hosted a Greater Hazleton Chamber of Commerce mixer on February 25, 2016 in their downtown Hazleton location (12 E. Broad St.) to celebrate the bank’s long-standing commitment to the community. Scott Fainor, National Penn President & CEO, addressed more than 70 participants at the event to recognize 76 years of Chamber membership, and highlight the bank’s achievements and its continued growth in the financial marketplace. 

In order to reaffirm their commitment to the community, Mr. Fainor also presented the Downtown Hazleton Alliance for Progress with a $30,000 donation from National Penn to support the organization’s mission of attracting new business and investment to the downtown. This donation made it possible for us to exceed our fundraising goal and clear the financial benchmarks we needed to be awarded “Main Street” community designation from the PA Department of Community and Economic Development. Without National Penn’s donation, this designation would not have been possible.

From Left: National Penn Bank representatives: Dave Kennedy, Chief Banking Officer
Toni Fritz, Branch Manager, Joe Kochanasz, Northern Region Retail Director, Linda McCarroll, Regional Manager, Scott Fainor, President & CEO; Downtown Hazleton Alliance for Progress Executive Director Krista Schneider and President Neal DeAngelo III; Greater Hazleton Chamber of Commerce President Mary Malone; and National Penn Bank representatives Pete Gray, Northern Region President, and Tony Cusatis, Northern Region Relationship Manager.

May 6th First Friday Schedule
May's First Friday is just around the corner. You can meet artists, authors, singers, historical reenactors, and photographers while you enjoy live entertainment and shop for the perfect gift for Mother's Day!  Click here or on image below for PDF version of the full schedule. 
Click here to view schedule in Spanish.

Winter First Friday Highlights
Thanks to our many partnering organizations, downtown merchants, and volunteers who participated in the February, March, and April First Friday events. These months featured several art and photography exhibits, Sanctuary stunt shows, book signings, documentary films, musicians, arts and crafts, historical tours and reenactments, weddings, heart-shaped pizzas, children's programs, greyhounds, fortune-telling, and much more! Special thanks to photographer Chris Adval for capturing some of the events.

Clockwise from top: Live stunt show at the Sanctuary (photo courtesy of Chris Adval Producations); Heart-shaped pizzas at Frankie's Pizzeria (photo courtesy of Chris Adval Productions); Guitarist Jilly Nelson at Expressions Boutique (photo courtesy of;  photographer Scott Lowden at the Dragonfly Cafe (photo courtesy of Chris Adval Productions); and Eckley Players Regina Drasher and Dave Matsinko perform the Ballad of Patrick Sweeney for the Greater Hazleton Historical Society's Irish history tour.

Featured New Business

Blue Mountain Health Care, 21 E. Broad Street
The Alliance would like to welcome Blue Mountain Home Health Care as one of the downtown's newest businesses! Blue Mountain Home Health Care is provides home health services to the community. The company is owned and operated by physicians to help people get better, and as independent as possible in the comfort of their own home. With offices in Pottsville, Harrisburg and Chambersburg, this makes the Hazleton office the fourth branch inauguration in five years. According to Sharif Amed, the Chief Operating officer of the Hazleton branch and Air Force veteran of two wars, the reason they decided to pick Hazleton was the dynamics of the community, its populace, and the growing needs. "We believe it is important to be in close proximity to our patients to feel and fill their needs on a daily basis," said Amed. The office expects to employ 10 home health care providers.

The company's founder, Dr. Zarar Bajwa, MD, who is also the medical director of BMHHC INC, is concurrently operating a physician's practice for Pediatric Asthma and Allergy in Pottsville, PA, as a member of Integrated Medical Group (IMG) for the last fifteen years. 
Open for Business
The Alliance would also like to welcome four other new businesses to the downtown who opened or relocated in the first quarter (January-March) of 2016. If we missed any, please be sure to let us know!
  • Innotek Computer Consulting, 21 E. Broad Street
  • Expressions Boutique (and Event Planning), 100 West Broad Street
  • Red Flag Traffic Control Management Co., 8 W. Broad Street, Suite 410
  • Benjamin Franklin Technical Institute (education/English language), 101 W. Broad Street

Everyone is invited to celebrate the NEW location of Innotek Computer Consulting in Downtown Hazleton (21 E. Broad St.)!

An official Chamber ribbon cutting ceremony will take place on Monday, April 25th at 4:30 pm, and the open house will take place from 4:30 to 6:30 pm!

Stop by, meet the owner and staff, check out their new office space, learn more about the services they provide to the business community, and enjoy some hors d'oevures & cocktails!

Free to attend!

Mural Project: Ideas Needed!!!
What would you like to see as the theme for the downtown's first mural?
The wall overlooking the parking area at Hazle Drugs (corner of Broad and Wyoming Streets) is being prepared for a mural. The Alliance was awarded a grant for the PA Council of the Arts last year for the purpose of funding a mural at this location, which will be a partnership between the Alliance, Hazleton POWER!, the Hazleton Area School District, and Hazle Drugs. We will be soliciting artist qualifications and proposals for the mural soon, but we would like to hear ideas as to what people feel should be the theme of the mural. Send ideas via email to


April 22-23: Art Youth Expo (AYE) 6
April 24-June 5: Pine Street POWER! Ball Tournament
April 28-May 1: Annie, Jr. at the Pennsylvania Theatre of Performing Arts
May 6: Art at the Markle
May 6: First Friday
May 13: Small Business Consultations
May 21: Heart Chase
June 3: Wine & Chocolate Walk, First Friday

Art Youth Expo (AYE) 6

The Annual Art Youth Expo, now in  its sixth year, is different from other arts events in that it focuses primarily on young artists (under age 30). The festival feature young people and emerging artists competing in contemporary categories, and gives them a chance to hone their skills and strut their stuff while having fun. Enjoy all kinds of ART, MUSIC, POETRY & FOOD!!! throughout Downtown Hazleton. Activities include CARICATURE DRAWING, FACE PAINTING, A COMMUNITY GARDEN PROJECT and much more! Start your tour at the Hazleton Art League (225 E. Broad St.) for a welcome, map of locations and schedule of events. No admission fee!!! The event begins at 6PM on Friday, April 22nd and continues all day Saturday, April 23nd. For more information, contact Marie Hayes at or Carl Frankel at, or call 570-454-0092. You can view the schedule on the HAL Facebook page.

Pine Street POWER! ball Soccer Tournament

Hazleton POWER! is working with a group of local soccer enthusiasts and the Hazleton Recreation Department to organize the Inaugural Pine Street POWER! Ball Soccer Tournament! Tournament games will be held every Sunday beginning on April 24th. Seeded championship tournament will be held on June 5th. Come out an cheer on the teams. Uncle Paul's Stuffed Pretzels will be at the first day's games!!! All games will be held at the Pine Street Playground (corner of Pine and Hemlock Streets), downtown Hazleton. For more information visit:

Pennsylvania Theatre of Performing Arts

The PTPA will be featuring Annie jr. April 28, 29 and 30th at 7:00pm. There will be another viewing on May 1st at 3:00pm. Tickets will be $10.00 for adults and $5.00 for children. For more information please call 570-454-5451 or visit us at

Future shows will be: “Last of the Red Hot Lovers” is a 1969 Neil Simon comedy that originally opened at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre. Performance dates will be: May 20, 21, 27, 28 at 7PM; May 22 and 29 at 3PM. Please contact the directors, Lynne Zanolini, at or 570-956-6992 or, Drew Coffman, at for more information.

Art at the Markle

Hazleton POWER will be hosting a regional artist networking event on May 6th, 2016 from 6:00-8:00 PM as part of May's First Friday events! This event, which is free and open to the public, will be held on the 11th floor of the Hayden Tower at the Markle Building (8 W. Broad St.). Last year this event included over 40 participating artists and over 120 pieces of art! For more information visit:

Small Business Consultations

The Wilkes University Small Business Development Center provides free and confidential consulting to small businesses and to individuals who are interested in starting a small business. Meetings are held every second Friday of the Month. The next meeting will be May 13th. Appointments are necessary, please call Julie at the Chamber to schedule an appointment, 570.455.1509. FREE TO ATTEND!


Downtown Hazleton along with the American Heart Association will be hosting the HeartChase on May 21, 2016. Check-in time will be at 8:00am and the event will start at 9:30am.

HeartChase is an engaging fundraising game that provides the chance to help your community and the American Heart Association chase away heart disease for good. On game day, teams of 2- 5 people compete against other teams in mission- based challenges. Each challenge is FUN and also promotes healthy lifestyle choices. Games will test players' knowledge and skills related to physical fitness, nutrition, hands only CPR & more. Get started by registering online at For more information contact Bettina McClure at

Celebrate the First Friday in June with samples of chocolate treats and selected wine pairings served by downtown Hazleton merchants and organizations. Cost is $10/ticket. Approximately 10 convenient locations. Walk is self-guided. Have your map stamped at all locations and enter to win a dinner for two in the "vault" at the Pines Eatery & Spirits.

Maps and wristbands may be picked up between 5:00-6:00 PM at the Greater Hazleton Chamber of Commerce (20 W. Broad Street) on the day of the event (June 3rd). Visit for details. To purchase tickets, click here!

Copyright © 2015 Downtown Hazleton Alliance for Progress. All rights reserved.

20 W. Broad St., Hazleton, PA 18201

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Downtown Hazleton Alliance for Progress · 20 W. Broad St. · Hazleton, PA 18201 · USA

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