Each week the Times-News features this Hits and Misses column. It is a look at the positive and negative news or events over the past week. Readers are invited to send their suggestions.

• A HIT for Berkeley Springs, West Virginia, which has been ranked No. 9 in USA Today’s Best Small Historic Towns in America competition. Residents voted for their favorites after USA Today created a 20-town finalist list and gave a month for the public to vote on the top 10.

• A HIT for the Allegany County Animal Shelter and its quick and successful intervention after a large, emaciated dog was abandoned there. The blue and white pit bull/Great Dane mix, which shelter workers named Jude, is recovering at a local veterinarian’s office. 

• A MISS for the person or people responsible for the animal’s deplorable condition. He was nearly starved to death and was too weak to stand on his own.

• A HIT for UPMC Western Maryland and its sponsorship of the 95th anniversary celebration for Deep Creek Lake. The commemoration, hosted by the Garrett County Chamber of Commerce, is planned for Aug. 13-16. The manmade lake has been a boon to the region’s economy over the decades since its creation, and remains a recreational hub for locals and visitors alike.

• A HIT for the Frostburg Lions Club, which previously announced that it’s holding a pet food drive today from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The annual collection, which benfits the Ark of Hope Animal Rescue in Oldtown, is one of numerous community events organized by the group.

• A HIT for Aging & Family Services of Mineral County, which has purchased the former Pizza Hut along U.S. Route 220 south of Keyser, West Virginia. The agency has designated the building as the future home of the local senior citizens’ center. A capital campaign will be launched to raise enough money for renovations.

• A HIT for the Allegany County Library System, which is doing its best to serve patrons with COVID-19 restrictions in place. Several virtual events have been scheduled, including a discussion about race in America featuring Ibram X. Kendi, the bestselling author of “How to be an Antiracist.” Libraries also have begun curbside service, where patrons can check out materials.

• A HIT for Kathy Burkey, who recently established the John Burkey Making Memories Fund at UPMC Western Maryland. She set up the endowment in memory of and in tribute to her late husband, who died in January 2019 after a 14-year battle with cancer. The fund is used to fulfill requests from patients at the hospital, like giving a man money to buy his children Christmas gifts. Another patient threw a birthday party for his daughter.

• OUR DOLT OF THE WEEK is the Long Island, New York, man who tried faking his death to avoid a jail sentence. Prosecutors said the phony death certificate his lawyer submitted had a glaring spelling error that made it a dead giveaway for a fraud. The 25-year-old suspect now faces up to four years in prison if convicted in the alleged scheme.That’s in addition to pending sentences for earlier guilty pleas to charges of possession of a stolen Lexus and attempted grand larceny of a truck — punishment prosecutors say he was looking to avoid.

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