What has seemed inevitable for years is now happening. Kmart is set to close its final Lehigh Valley location. The Kmart in Walnutport is closing, according to information on the Sears jobs website. Kmart's store in Wind Gap closed earlier this year after the Wilson Kmart closed last December. There's no official word on when the Walnutport store will close its doors for the final time.
State Department of Health officials Sunday added 336 new COVID-19 cases to Pennsylvania's total, bringing that number to 78,798. Four more people died due to coronavirus complications, leaving the state with 6215 deaths attributed to coronavirus.
This weekend, the coronavirus-related death toll in New Jersey surpassed the number of fatalities recorded during the four years of World War II. COVID-19 has now been blamed for 12,625 deaths. 166,881 positive cases have been recording since the pandemic began.
Penn State University officials are confirming the school will return with in-person instruction in the fall. Classes will begin on August 24th and be held on Labor Day and through November until Thanksgiving break. Experts fear the break raises the risk of spreading COVID-19 as many students return home for the holiday, so all classes and finals will take place virtually after the break. The university says it will have contact tracing and testing capacity to track any potential outbreaks of the virus.
A popular summer destination says it's weeks away from reopening. Hersheypark says it will open for the summer on July 3rd. Park goers will notice enhanced safety measures in place to address the risk of exposure to COVID-19, including a guest reservation systems, face coverings, temperature screenings and increased cleaning and sanitization measures. Hersheypark's newest attraction, Chocolatetown and Candymonium rollercoaster will be open according to Hershey Entertainment representatives. Dorney Park and Wildwater Kingdom and Knoebels have yet to announce reopening plans.
Non-essential businesses can start letting customers inside and not be restricted to curbside service across New Jersey today. Today begins the second phase of the state's reopening since the COVID-19 outbreak began in March. Childcare centers can reopen and stores are restricted to fifty percent capacity. Customers and employees must wear masks.
A New Jersey group is helping residents cope with the stress of the COVID-19 pandemic by offering a free text service. Residents who are struggling to cope with the strains of the pandemic can text NJHOPE to 51684 for emotional support and referrals. They can also call 1-866-202-HELP. The Mental Health Association of New Jersey is providing the free service.
Investigators are trying to figure out what sparked a weekend fire in Williams Township. The fire began just after 11:30 Saturday morning at the corner of Raubsville Road and Route 611. The woman who lived at the home, 73-year-old Alice Groner, was pronounced dead at the scene. Russell Moser says the woman was a customer and friend of his. "We heard all the action going on down here and then when we heard that it was Alice, it was devastating, really," Moser says. Authorities have yet to make a determination on the cause and manner of the woman's death, although the coroner said it appears to be related to the fire.
We're learning more about last week's death of Bethlehem woman Mary Orwan. The Lehigh County Coroner's Office confirms that the 73-year-old woman died Saturday from injuries she suffered two days prior in a fire. On Thursday the woman was smoking a cigarette while on supplemental oxygen. The oxygen canister then ignited and set fire to her city home. Her death is attributed to complications from smoke inhalation and burns.
Investigators say the driver of a vehicle mistook the gas pedal for the brake and drove into the side of a house on South 10th Street in Coplay. The driver suffered a minor arm injury. Nobody inside the home was injured. The crash happened just after 5:30 Saturday afternoon.
People are coming together to protect a monument in Philadelphia. Over the weekend, many residents gathered at the Christopher Columbus statue at Marconi Plaza to protect the monument against the vandals. People used bats and other items in their own defense. Philadelphia police also showed up as a backup precaution. This comes after Columbus statues were removed in New Jersey and Delaware.
Former Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenberg is trying to make a push at a baseball career. Hackenberg says he has the arm strength as a former high school pitcher and he's working on his command and control. His coach says hackenberg's fastball hits above 90 miles per hour.