RENOVO – Two days of rainy and blustering weather tried to put a damper on Renovo’s Sesquicentennial celebration, but the 150 year-old borough today put an exclamation point on a party that lasted for three days.
Rain didn’t help with the Saturday parade and forced today’s celebration into the borough fire hall but the culminating ceremony went off without a hitch, a look back at Renovo’s beginning and a look ahead to the future.
As keynote speaker Clinton County President Judge Craig Miller talked about the rebirth the western Clinton County borough is undergoing:
“Renovo – like its citizens now and in the past will not give up. It will continue to renew. The streets, water system and sewer system are being renewed. The old PRR shops – the original reason for this community are being renewed (a reference to the planned Renovo Energy Center to begin construction next year at the site of the old yards).
“As we stand here, the sons and daughters of Renovo we should stand proud. For 150 years we have survived, we have excelled, we have persevered, we have renewed. I hope to be back here at the 200 year celebration Bicentennial, if you will have me and to once again not only celebrate the beauty of this town, but the beauty of its people as well.”
Judge Miller, a Renovo native, talked of Renovo’s birth as a railroad town, how its ancestors came from Italy, Ireland and other European countries to live and work in Renovo, becoming “great citizens and the backbone of this country.” He traced his roots to his great-grandfather Vito Poleto who came to the U.S. from Naples, Italy in 1886 and worked for the Pennsylvania Railroad for 38 years, among the many Renovo immigrants, Judge Miller said, who “struggled to get here and then led great lives.”
The borough received speeches and plaques and citations from a number of elected officials including state Rep. Mike Hanna, 5th district Congressman Glenn Thompson, the Clinton County Commissioners and Chapman Township supervisor Tim Horner.
Speakers included former Renovo Mayor Wayne Short who talked about the borough’s history and expressed a theme heard from other speakers, “Look out world, Renovo is alive and well, experiencing a period of revitalization.”
The borough unveiled its time capsule containing memorabilia from the various 150th birthday events. Borough council president Ann Tarantella gave special thanks to borough secretary Marsha Davis for her efforts in seeing the anniversary celebration to fruition.