SAVE THE DATE – 85th annual Gridiron show!

The 85th annual Gridiron will be held Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2015 at the State Museum of Pennsylvania in Harrisburg.

The evening starts with a cash bar and appetizer buffet at 5 p.m. in Memorial Hall/Village Square of the State Museum of Pennsylvania. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. in the auditorium.

As we get closer to showtime, we’ll update our Gridiron page with more details about ticket information.

Polling conference at the Capitol.

The Pennsylvania Legislative Correspondents’ Association, Muhlenberg College, and Franklin & Marshall College are sponsoring an event next week to discuss “The Future of Political Polling.”

The event will take place Jan. 16 in the Capitol Complex East Wing. Admission is free.

From the release:

“The Future of Political Polling.” In the wake of another controversial year with questions raised about many aspects of last year’s publicly released political polls, three Pennsylvania pollsters, in short presentations, will examine:

1) Recent polling performances

2) Disclosure standards for public polls

3) Evaluating Internet polling

4) Partisan poll releases

5) Challenges facing election polling

6) Who’s Nate Silver and why should we care

Panelists: Chris Borick, Director of the Muhlenberg College Institute of Public
Berwood Yost, Director, Center for Opinion Research, Franklin &
Marshall College
Terry Madonna, Director, Franklin & Marshall College Poll

When: Friday, January 16, 2015

Where: Room 60 East Wing (next to the cafeteria), State Capitol.

Time: 12:30- 1:30 pm

Sponsored by: Pennsylvania Legislative Correspondents’ Association, Muhlenberg College, Franklin & Marshall College.

Join us; bring lunch if you would like, come with your questions, no charge for admission.

Tickets to the 84th annual Gridiron are now on sale!!

Tickets to this year’s Gridiron show are now on sale!

The annual show is an off-the-record evening, where the state Capitol reporters poke fun at Harrisburg movers and shakers — and they poke back. In a town where partisanship can divide, the event is a chance for politicos of all stripes to come together to laugh at themselves and each other.

Check out our Gridiron page to purchase tickets through PayPal.

Family, friends remember DeCoursey

About 150 people, including family, friends and colleagues of Peter DeCoursey, gathered at the historic Christ Church and St. Michael’s in Germantown Saturday (Jan. 11) to remember Pete’s too brief life.
The Bishop Provisional of Pennsylvania, the Rt. Rev. Clifton Daniel 3rd , presided over a memorial service filled with hymns and prayer and recollections of a life well lived.
Pete’s sister, Ruth, delivered beautiful images of Pete’s vision of peace highlighted by play time spent with his children, Ellie and Ben. His father, Robert DeCoursey, relayed a story about a time when gubernatorial candidate Tom Ridge and Pete engaged in a lively, airborne discussion of Shakespearean sonnets while out on the campaign trail. Pete’s best friend, Mark Bernstein, recalled how Pete stunned the first grade class at Penn Charter by showing up on St. Patrick’s Day dressed in orange, when everyone else, of course, was wearing green.
Bernstein said Pete, at age six, had determined that as a descendant of Irish Protestants he should wear the color of “Ulster Protestants” rather than the color of Irish Catholics.
Among the dignitaries who attended the service were former Gov. Ed Rendell, Lt. Gov. Jim Cawley, former House Speakers Dennis O’Brien and Bob O’Donnell, U.S. Rep. Bob Borski, former state House Rep. Kathy Manderino, Senate Republican communications director Erik Arneson, Sen. Dominic Pileggi’s chief counsel, Kathy Eakin, House Democratic spokesman Bill Patton and his wife, Democratic strategist Mary Isenhour and Gov. Corbett’s communications director Lynn Lawson.
PLCA members – and past members – who attended included, Amy Worden, Angela Couloumbis, Kevin Zwick, Chris Comisac, Melissa Daniels, Steve Esack, Kate Giammarise, Karen Langley, Brad Bumsted, Diana Robinson, Corinna Wilson, Scott Detrow, Laura Olson, Tracie Mauriello, Tom Fitzgerald, Tony Romeo, John Micek, Mary Wilson and Chris Brennan. WHYY senior reporter and host Dave Davies, whose obituary of Pete  ( was included in the service program, also attended.

In memorium

Peter L. DeCoursey, a long-time Pennsylvania political reporter, died Wednesday at his parent’s home in Philadelphia after long battles against pancreatic and lung cancers. He was 52 years old.

DeCoursey served most recently as the bureau chief of and previously worked for the Harrisburg Patriot-News and the Reading Eagle.

Here’s his obituary from Pennlive/Patriot-News:

Here’s a post from Pennlive/Patriot-News opinion writer John L. Micek:

Here’s a remembrance from (paywall):


In memoriam

Sara Fritz, an award-winning journalist and former United Press International bureau chief in Harrisburg during the 1970s, passed away recently.

Read her obituary from the Los Angeles Times:,0,5137041.story