When you live in a neighborhood for 26 years, you get to know it well.
For Joe and Ginger Volpone, their two-and-a-half decades in School Lane Hills not only have allowed them to get to know the people and places across the neighborhood, but over the years, the couple also has become an integral part of the community. It is where they raised their two children, Jenna and Victor, and where their four grandchildren (with one on the way!) are now enjoying the home and neighborhood as well.
As a retired educator who worked with the School District of Lancaster for 34 years, Joe has helped local students learn new skills, find their passions and discover who they want to be as adults. As a licensed real estate agent for 36 years, Ginger has worked with many of those same students as adults, helping them find their first homes where they would go on to raise children of their own.
“I’ve sold homes to several of his former students,” Ginger said. “I’ve gotten a lot of people who say to me, ‘Do you know Mr. Volpone? He was our teacher!’ One couple even told me, ‘We stole our first kiss in his class!’”
Living and working in the same school district for so many years also has meant that personal and professional life sometimes overlapped.
“I had my daughter in my class at one point,” Joe said. “But it wasn’t so terrible for her. I taught tech ed — what used to be called industrial arts. It was a fun class. It wasn’t like English class. I had all the toys!”
Joe retired from education 10 years ago and now works as a contractor renovating people’s homes, which often gives the couple the opportunity to work together.
“With Ginger being a REALTOR®, there is always something to be done on the properties,” Joe said.
But it’s not only through their jobs that Joe and Ginger have become so close to the community. For the past 12 years, Ginger has served as an election poll worker. Joe has also recently started working the polls.
Ginger also previously volunteered for five years with the Lancaster City Bureau of Police, working in the juvenile division helping to organize and track evidence files and other records.
“What a wonderful and intelligent group of people,” Ginger said of the police officers she worked with.
And while Joe and Ginger have spent decades working and volunteering across Lancaster, they may be best known by their neighbors for their annual Halloween decorations. Halloween, in fact, is Ginger’s birthday.
To celebrate the special day, the couple spends most of October covering their home and yard along Wilson Drive with all things ghoulish.
“It actually takes us a couple of weeks to decorate,” Ginger said. “We’ve got the whole graveyard thing going on with monsters, skeletons and ghouls. We get comments all the time about how much the kids love our yard.”
COVID-19 couldn’t even stop the couple from celebrating their favorite holiday. Last year, to ensure neighborhood children were able to keep a safe distance while still getting their candy, Joe used 10 feet of plastic tubing to construct a special shoot he could slide candy through and into trick-or-treat bags.
“The kids really loved it,” Joe said.
Along with Halloween, there is another special day Joe and Ginger are celebrating this year — their 40th wedding anniversary.
The couple first met while they were both attending Millersville University, but they quickly realized their paths had crossed years before under less friendly circumstances.
“We went to rival high schools in Delaware County. I was on my school’s wrestling team, and Ginger was a cheerleader at her school,” Joe said. “We figured out that there had to be at least one time when she was cheering against me.”
Over the years together, Joe and Ginger have seen many changes across the community.
“Next door to us, there have been five different families that have lived in the house,” Ginger said.
But they say their love for School Lane Hills will never change.
“We love the people, the trees, the uniqueness,” Joe said. “What’s not to like?”