May 1 - Law Day in Lycoming County

Law Day onlookersLaw Day 2007 was celebrated in a packed Lycoming County court room, on Tuesday, May 1, 2007.  The five Lycoming  County Common Pleas Court judges and U.S. District Court Judge Malcolm Muir presided at the special session of court.

LLA President John Pietrovito

The program, which has been sponsored by the Lycoming Law Association annually for many years, showcased the winners of the annual essay and artwork contest that is co-sponsored by the LLA and the Lycoming County Paralegal Association. The winners presented their work for the first time to the assembly.  This year,  in addition to the student winners of the essay and art contest, Judge Malcolm Muir, was recognized for his service to the community and to the rule of law.

Judge Dudley Anderson

After some brief opening comments, Judge Dudley Anderson introduced the "Law Day Singers" who offered a rousing rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner."  County Commissioner Ernie Larson read the official 2007 Law Day Proclamation.

LLA President John P. Pietrovito welcomed those in attendance by reminding them of the importance of living in a society of laws.  He then introduced local attorney Jack Humphrey, under the eyes of the JudgesJack Humphrey, who regaled the audience with a tribute to Judge Muir.  The esteem in which the local bar holds Judge Muir was memorialized on a plaque, which was presented to the Judge.

The student winners were then called on to display their art works or read their essays. The elementary division (grades 1-6) essay topic this year was as follows:

You and your family are going on vacation to Disney World. While you are on the plane, waiting for take-off, your little sister has a temper tantrum and starts yelling and screaming and crying. Your mom and dad cannot make her stop! The pilot makes you and your family get off the plane and the plane leaves for Florida without you. Should the airline be permitted to kick you and your family off the flight because of the way your sister was acting?

Brian Stopper reads his esseyThe secondary division (grades 7-12) essay topic this year was:

Should a municipality be permitted to pass laws which punish landlords for renting property to illegal immigrants and/or punishing employers for employing illegal immigrants?

Work by Cody SonesThe artwork topic (for all age groups) was Symbols of Patriotism.

The Elementary division winners: (Essays): Brian Stopper -- 1st Grade, Jackson Elementary School; Taylor Nickens -- 3rd Grade, Cochran Elementary School; Kate Mitchell -- 5th Grade, Rommelt Middle School.  (Artwork): Bailey Culver -- 2nd Grade, Ashkar Elementary School; Carson Wishard -- 4th Grade, Lyter Elementary School.

The Secondary division winners: (Essays): Bethany Stoner -- 7th Grade, McCall Middle School; Ryan Brague -- 12th Grade, St. Neumann Regional Academy.  (Artwork): Kristina Carey -- 7th Grade, St. John Neumann Regional Academy; Cody Sones -- 9th Grade, Hughesville High School; Melissa Little -- The Winners!12th Grade, Hughesville High School.

At the conclusion of the essay/artwork segment of the ceremony, the Judges expressed their thoughts on the student's work and the importance of Law Day in recognizing the importance of the rule of law in our country. A reception sponsored by the Lycoming County Paralegal Association, in the children’s honor, was held in the Juror's Lounge and brought the assembled group together for pizza and cake.

Following that, another reception was held in honor of Judge Muir at the Old Corner Hotel..

The Law Day ceremony was filmed and will be presented on Comcast channel 71 on May 3 and 8, 2007, at 7:00 p.m.