Thursday, July 25, 2013

Scene in Easton: The Mayor's Summer Youth Academy

By Christina Georgiou

From left to right, local high school students Asia Morton, Sam Boric,
Michael Weiss, and Daniel Ramut address Easton City Council members
Wednesday evening.
Four ambitious high school student have been attending the "Mayor's Summer Youth Academy" this week, a four-day camp experience in Easton with Mayor Sal Panto that provides teens with  hands-on education about how municipal government works.

Asia Morton, of Palmer Township who will complete her senior year Easton Area High School, Sam Boric and Michael Weiss, both from Nazareth and incoming freshmen at Nazareth Area High School, and Daniel Ramut, who will be attending EAHS as an incoming freshman, all spent the last few days  with the mayor learning about Easton and how the city's government operates.

The group also took a tour of the Downtown district and visited the city's waste water treatment plant--which, "Once you get over the awful smell is actually pretty cool," said one attendee.

The group will also view exhibits at the Sigal museum today, the final day of the camp experience.

The four teens attending the Mayor's Summer Youth
Academy chat with Mayor Sal Panto after dinner
at the Easton Farmers' Market Wednesday evening.
 Wednesday evening, after dining at the Easton Farmers' Market and having an ice cream dessert at the Bank Street Creamery, each gave a short presentation to city council on their views of current  local issues, including opposing a curfew for underage residents, a perceived need for a non-ethnic grocery store in the city, allowing the keeping chickens on residential properties with restrictions, and how to better utilize Hugh Moore Park for special city events.

Council members praised the four as future leaders Wednesday evening after their presentations and encouraged them to keep up "the great work that you're doing."

Panto said the week has been fun and educational, adding that their parents, many of who attended the council meeting Wednesday evening, should be proud of the teens.

"Hopefully, they did learn about civic engagement," he said. "I commend the parents, and, younger siblings, this is something you should strive for."

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