A Column by Editor Lynn Rebuck
Last Sunday was unusually sunny and warm for December, drawing locals to Lititz Springs Park for duck-feeding duty. 6-year-old Kayla Brubaker had an attentive feathered audience clamoring at her feet as she broadcast food over the web-footed throng, that is until they waddled noisily away to inspect a new group of human arrivals toting bags of food.
Jimmy and Jill Susa, missionaries from Venezuela, had come to town for the birth of their seventh grandchild, a boy, who would be the firstborn for their daughter Jaclyn Harnish and husband Josh, of Lititz. They stood in Lititz Springs on Jaclyn’s due date with no sign of the impending arrival that they had traveled so far to see.
“We did a couple of laps trying to get [the delivery] going,” joked Jaclyn. The family stood feeding the ducks under pleasant skies.
“It’s a great day for a walk in the park,” said Josh.
The winds picked up and it began to rain, as the temperature quickly dropped. Jill, who had been enjoying summer in the Southern Hemisphere, tightened her scarf against the breeze, and encouraged me to put on my raincoat. I did more than that–I donned hat, gloves, scarf and my long feather-filled coat, which I hoped didn’t include the DNA of of any downy Lititz paddlers.
The chilling rain didn’t stop cousins Chris, Elsa, Noel, and Katelyn, who arrived as others left to seek shelter. They lined up alongside Lititz Run and lofted food towards noisy and appreciative fowl in the foul weather.
Drops of rain sent rings echoing across the smooth surface of a puddle in the parking lot dotted with leaves and a stray feather. Ducks dabbled in the watery run as others toddled alongside, their bright orange feet sloshing through shallow, muddy puddles. Some stooped to drink the murky concoction.
Meanwhile Connor Wilkerson was on a solo mission as he rode his bike through the rainy park and stopped to check on the status of a photojournalist trying to stealthily snap a photo of a squirrel. Wilkerson parked his red bike beneath the gazebo roof out of the rain, then paused to sit nearby on the wooden deck.
Raindrops rolled down the red paint on the Reading Railroad caboose. Above an American flag, with tattered red and white stripes, whipped dutifully in the wind and rain. Is that particular flag due to be replaced? Perhaps the staff at the Train Station Welcome Center or Boy Scout leadership can answer that question.
Nearby production wound down at the historic Wilbur Chocolate factory, officially owned by Cargill Cocoa and Chocolate North America. The plant soon will be deserted, no longer to make desserts. The shift work will shift to more modern facilities, as a town mourns the loss of a staple food plant and workers mourn the loss of jobs. Rain pelted bricks laid by hands hundreds of years ago and trickled down glass where workers once gazed out upon a Lititz sky.
Last Sunday, that same sky produced perhaps the most magnificent rainbow seen over the town, a double arc of color that spanned the horizon, with Lititz in its midst.
Lynn Rebuck is the editor of LititzDailyNews.com, a 2015 EPPY Award Honorable Mention recipient for Best Photojournalism. Lynn publishes the entire independent newspaper out of her passion for the Lititz community. Lynn is an innovator in digital publishing and a national award-winning columnist. Support for the site is made possible by readers like you, and non-tax-deductible donations may be made through the PayPal button below or to the right. Email Lynn at LititzDaily@yahoo.