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Friday, July 31, 2009

Of Paramount Importance


It's mystified me for years, and I've asked several people who work in the neighborhood. They also do not have the answer. Why is there a Paramount Pictures logo above a garage in downtown Wilkes-Barre? It's been there as long as I can remember. You can see the logo, in the center of the building, above the garage door.

The garage is along North State Street, next to the back entrance of the Citizens Voice building. The F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts used to be the Paramount Theater. It's only a block away. Was this building a warehouse at one time? Perhaps someone from the Historical Society has the answer.
While we're on the subject of Wilkes-Barre, yesterday was the weekly Farmer's Market on Public Square, one of the better ones here in our area. The set up was underway when I was in the city yesterday morning.

Something was missing yesterday. For the past couple of years the Thursday before the Pennsylvania 500 was NASCAR Day. A few cars would be on display, and it was great fun.

I made an inquiry, and was told there was a "lack of interest" from the race teams contacted by the city. Perplexed, I was. It seems NASCAR Day drew big crowds in past years. I remember blogging that the Farmer's Market and NASCAR Day was too much for one day. NASCAR Day could have, and should have stood on its own.

Why did NASCAR blow off Wilkes-Barre? The economy? Too busy? Crowds too small? A lack of interest from the city?

While city officials are celebrating the opening of a cookie shop, and investigating the nightly brawls and vandalism at Main Street bars, they should sit down and figure out what went wrong.