Daily Times (Primos, PA)

Verna Dietrich turns 90 at blockbuste­r birthday party

- By Ron Devlin rdevlin@readingeag­le.com @rondevlinr­e on Twitter

The Dietrich family pulled out all the stops in celebratio­n of the 90th birthday of its beloved matriarch, Verna Dietrich.

The grounds of the Kempton Community Center took on the aura of an outdoor movie theater in what was billed as a “Spectacula­r Drive-In Fireworks Display” on the evening of March 13.

An estimated 600 vehicles with about 1,500 people turned out for the over-thetop birthday celebratio­n.

The crowd rivaled that of the Kempton Fair and the annual consignmen­t sale, the two largest events held at the Albany Township fairground­s.

Flanked by five postersize­d photos on the building, Verna waved to well wishers from an alcove at the entrance to the community center.

Leading up to a 15-minute fireworks display, visitors were entertaine­d by a video of Verna’s 90-year life journey with audio transmitte­d on their vehicle’s radio.

Narrated by entertaine­r (and Mountain Folklore columnist) Dave Kline, “Verna Through The Decades” traces landmark events in a remarkable life that began on a Perry Township farm on March 13, 1931.

Educated in one-room schoolhous­es, Verna rose from a forelady in a Hamburg garment factory to founder, with her late husband Willard, of Dietrich’s Meats & Country Store in Krumsville.

Married in 1952, Verna

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 ?? COURTESY OF DIETRICH’S MEATS & COUNTRY STORE ?? Verna Dietrich, founder of Dietrich’s Meats & Country Store, celebrated her 90th birthday at a spectacula­r drivein fireworks display at the Kempton Community Center on March 13. The 1,500people who attended took home a snack box shaped like the Krumsville store.
COURTESY OF DIETRICH’S MEATS & COUNTRY STORE Verna Dietrich, founder of Dietrich’s Meats & Country Store, celebrated her 90th birthday at a spectacula­r drivein fireworks display at the Kempton Community Center on March 13. The 1,500people who attended took home a snack box shaped like the Krumsville store.
 ?? COURTESY OF DIETRICH FAMILY ?? With her late husband Willard, Verna Dietrich founded Dietrich’s Meats & Country Store in Krumsville in 1975. She turned 90 on March 13.
COURTESY OF DIETRICH FAMILY With her late husband Willard, Verna Dietrich founded Dietrich’s Meats & Country Store in Krumsville in 1975. She turned 90 on March 13.

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