The Greater Hazleton Area Civic Partnership held the official kick-off for its Top of the Mountain campaign March 21, 1999. An organization committed to reaching goals through the cooperation of community-minded people, the Top of the Mountain "Citizen Empowerment Engine" was the brainchild of internationally renowned pollster John Zogby. Zogby conducted a community-wide poll in August, 1998 in an effort to zero in on the community's needs and what its residents feel are vital elements that currently are sorely lacking in Hazleton.
On that rainy night in March, a room of concerned citizens, as well as members of the Civic Partnership, filled the Hazleton Area Career Center's large instruction room. They came to hear the results of Zogby's study and then begin a course of action to improve not only Hazleton's image, but its quality of life.
Zogby's key recommendation was the organization of a citizen's empowerment movement to pool the resources and efforts of a group of diligent area residents in order to make the Greater Hazleton area the best place to live, learn, work, worship, and play. Membership in a number of Top of the Mountain programs has been impressive, as we begin to harness the positive energy of concerned citizens of Hazleton and the surrounding communities.
According to Larry Crawford, co-chair of the Top of the Mountain project, the group operates under the Civic Partnership. Its main goal is to recruit as many volunteers for Top of the Mountain projects as possible. From the numbers of phone calls from interested residents and the attendance of project meetings, that goal is well on its way to being achieved.
Top of the Mountain has already attained a great level of success in its "Paint our Towns Red, White and Blue" campaign. A number of area businesses, government officials, and volunteers have banded together to finance, make and display festive red, white and blue decorations throughout Hazleton and in its surrounding areas. Future plans include a community picnic and regular community forums for concerned citizens and government officials to discuss the further improvement of the Greater Hazleton area.
For information on the Top of the Mountain project, the results of John Zogby's study, and how you can join us at the Top of the Mountain, please contact the Civic Partnership office at 570-455-1508.
Greater Hazleton Area Civic Partnership
20 West Broad Street
Hazleton, PA 18201-6418