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Distant volcano has local connection

ARIANNA MCKEE/THE EXPRESS This inscription above the shrine at Zindel Park in McElhattan reads “1931 Lava from Mt. Etna volcano Italy.”

With Mount Etna in Sicily erupting once again, it seemed an apt time to bring up the local connection that Clinton County has to that far off titan.

Zindel Park is a favorite spot of many area residents to hike to — and beyond, to the reservoir and further into the hills. Recently, Frozen Snot was held in the vicinity.

Tucked into a corner at Zindel Park is a peculiar stone structure, called by some “the shrine” or “the monument.”

What purpose it originally served is likely destined to be an unanswered question.

In 2013, local historian Lou Bernard references the monument in a story about a statue of a woman which disappeared from Zindel sometime after 1954.

Why exactly this piece of a distant Sicilian volcano was brought to a quiet corner of Clinton County to reside, however, is not something he explains.

Perhaps Philip Zindel, the park’s namesake and one-time director of Parks and Public Properties, had a personal connection to the region.

Regardless, it can be interesting to consider how many connections a quiet area in the middle of Pennsylvania has to the world around us.

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