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TOP 5 reasons why the EPIC Awards will be the Networking Event of the Summer

1. Celebrate the EXTRAORDINARY Honorees


Celebrate the people who are being honored, starting with our EPIC award presentation ceremony. This one hour featured presentation honors Patrice Persico, Kathi Bankes and Teri Ooms, with Century Recognitions to the Rotary Club of Wilkes-Barre and Penn State Wilkes-Barre and a special presentation to Dr. Charles Davis.

2. Over 300 Industry Professionals Confirmed to Attend


EPIC networking opportunities with over 350 of the Area’s Business Leaders & Upcoming Professionals to make amazing industry connections.

3. Our EPIC Food Vendors


Hungry? Appetizers will be available following the program featuring Chamber Member Restaurants: Ruth’s Chris, East Mountain Inn, Rodano’s & Franklin’s, Genetti’s, Lucky’s Sportshouse, Wolfgang Puck, El Zocalo & desserts by Amberdonia. PLUS complimentary drinks will be provided.

4. The Historic F.M. Kirby Center


Centrally located in the heart of downtown Wilkes-Barre, the beautiful and historic F.M. Kirby Center plays host to this year’s EPIC Awards.

5. Because it’s going to be EPIC


Get your tickets today!


Let’s Take a Walk Around Downtown Wilkes-Barre: America’s Best Community


If you take a walk around downtown Wilkes-Barre, you will find over 40 small and large retailers, and 40 more diverse restaurants that feature tastes from around the world.

Public Square serves as an anchor site to 5 of our area’s renowned colleges and universities, including King’s College, Wilkes University, Luzerne County Community College, and soon to come Commonwealth Medical College and Penn State Wilkes-Barre in shared space facilities. The students from these local colleges and universities give the downtown a vital energy and vision.

The Innovation Center on Public Square is home to local start-up companies, a soon to come entrepreneurial and business training center, and eBay Enterprise Marketing Solutions, who just announced that they have officially moved their headquarters to Wilkes-Barre! This means that the company will be hiring an additional 50 employees, on top of the hires projected from their expansion in June.

The River Street Historic District includes over 200 historic buildings throughout the main streets of River Street, Franklin Street, the Susquehanna River Common, and smaller connecting streets. These buildings represent many of the architectural styles from the 19th and 20th century, including: Art Deco, Baroque, Beaux Arts, Chateauesque, Craftsman Style, Gothic Revival, Classical Revival, Greek Revival, Moorish Revival, Colonial Revival International, Italiante, High Victorian Gothic, Neoclassical Revival, Queen Anne, Tudor Revival, Renaissance, and Romanesque.


Our park-like, 55 acre River Common space connects the River Street Historic District and Public Square to the rest of the downtown by opening the riverfront back up to the community with community events such as the annual Riverfest, Chalkfest, as well as holiday, athletic, and concert gatherings.

Performance spaces, arts organizations, and cultural events bring creativity to the downtown. Wilkes-Barre is proud to house the F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts, the Wyoming Valley Arts League, Downtown Arts, the Luzerne County Historical Museum, the Fine Arts Fiesta, our Third Friday Art Walk, and various art galleries.

All of these entities are located within 16 blocks of our walkable downtown core!


Wilkes-Barre’s Colleges and Universities: America’s Best Community

King’s College, the Commonwealth Medical College, Penn State Wilkes-Barre, Luzerne County Community College, and Wilkes University all have one thing in common: a current or soon-to-come downtown Wilkes-Barre anchor!

These colleges and universities have worked to connect their students to the downtown fabric by utilizing spaces on Public Square for classes and programs, remodeling their campuses throughout the downtown, and involving students in activities that encourage them to engage with the community.

King’s College’s King’s on the Square building welcomes their students to the downtown, and invites the community into their attached Zime restaurant. Local artwork is also showcased in indoor and outdoor exhibits. Additionally, the college has decided to share their space with the Commonwealth Medical College to bring TCMC’s exercise science and athletic training programs to the downtown.

Penn State Wilkes-Barre has become a part of the downtown by contributing the seed funding that they received from the INVENT Penn State Initiative to support the development of an entrepreneurial lab and mentorship program in the Innovation Center on Public Square.

The Luzerne County Community College has a space on Public Square for local students-an extension of its main branch.

Wilkes University’s Gateway Project has connected different segments of their campus, improved public safety, and enhanced a walkway throughout the downtown.

Students have also embraced activities that utilize our area’s natural resources and connect them with the surrounding community. Wilkes students have discovered outdoor assets of our area by participating in the 2015 Outdoor Nation Challenge-where they placed 4th out of 57 schools! Penn State Wilkes-Barre students have even become involved in the America’s Best Communities competition by educating and engaging local businesses, non-profits, community members, and college students!



America’s Best Communities Update: Penn State Wilkes-Barre Partnership

Penn State Wilkes-Barre students have been involved in the America’s Best Communities competition!

As their semester project, Terry Clemente’s Contemporary Business Skills class at Penn State Wilkes-Barre have been educating and engaging local businesses, non-profits, community members, and other colleges students about the America’s Best Communities Competition and our community revitalization plans and goals.

The 12 students in the class were divided into three groups, and each group was assigned a personalized hashtag (#PSU1, #PSU2, and #PSU3) to promote some friendly competition and allow students to track their progress through social media. Each team was responsible for developing their own education and social media engagement strategy for ABC, which they would then implement throughout the semester.

Students were given suggestion lists of local businesses, non-profits, community events, and surrounding higher education institutions to reach out to about the Wilkes-Barre’s plans for the ABC campaign, and were encouraged to connect with organizations and individuals from their own networks as well.

The students sent emails, made phone calls, arranged meetings, and set up outreach tables throughout the community to spread the word about America’s Best Communities, and to engage local organizations and community members through social media. People were encouraged to show their support on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram by using the ABC50 hashtag. Many have responded featuring pictures of their businesses with our America’s Best Communities signs, “selfies” with these signs, or text posts about the competition. The students themselves have developed countless posts to promote ABC, and one group has even developed a Facebook page for The City of Wilkes-Barre’s ABC campaign.

The student’s efforts have been responsible for over 300 posts, with approximately 3,300 additional engagements through likes, shares, and comments.

They have truly connected with and inspired our community, and have made our community excited about being one of America’s Best Communities!