The News-Item offers these "cheers and jeers" from the past week of news:

- Cheers to Mothers and Others Support, the group of military moms who organized last Sunday night's Gold Star Mothers ceremony at Alvin E. Long American Legion Post 504 in Mandata. The 500 luminaries made a beautiful sight along Route 147 that evening, and the courage of three local mothers who have lost sons to war, and a sister, too, to participate, is not taken for granted.

- Jeers to Shamokin City Council, which has raised legitimate concerns about the proposed Anthracite Outdoor Adventure Area but chose to invite only one of three county commissioners to a special meeting to address it. While the situation is controversial, why not invite someone from the county planning department - those most knowledgeable about the park - if the true goal is to make progress?

- Cheers to the five local churches who conducted pet blessings from Thursday through Sunday in conjunction with St. Francis of Assisi Day. Pets are an important part of many people's lives and churches raise their value in the community - and remind people of their importance - through this spiritual offering.

- Jeers to Thea Tafner and Blaine Handerhan in their latest legal maneuvering. Tafner for filing for bankruptcy protection while she serves federal prison time for embezzlement from an emergency services organization, and Handerhan for penning a letter of plea to a judge seeking "compassion" and a new lawyer while he's in the pen after being convicted of possessing child pornography. Judging by the reaction, the public has zero sympathy for both.