Car Cruise, Recycling Event Planned Saturday in W.O.

July 18, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: Announcements, White Oak News

An electronic and household hazardous waste recycling collection drop off program will take place from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday (July 21) at the White Oak Municipal Building, 2280 Lincoln Way.

Residents must register online or by calling 1-866-815-0016. It is a pay as you go program; information is available on the White Oak website and at the borough office.

Bridge City Church is hosting a car cruise from 5 to 8:30 p.m. Saturday at their 3001 Jacks Run Road location. The event is a benefit for the White Oak Police Department.

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White Oak Council Announces Approval of PennDOT Funding

July 18, 2018 |

By Cami DiBattista | Posted in: White Oak News

Funding has been approved by the state Department of Transportation’s Green Light-Go program to White Oak in the amount of $601,808, council announced this week.

The program, which is designed to reimburse local municipalities for signal upgrades and intersection safety improvements, should allow for an upgrade to all six traffic lights in the borough, officials said.

In other business, Mayor Ina Jean Marton announced that the White Oak Police Department received a compliance monitoring visit from the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency on July 3. The visit was to review how juveniles are being handled within the department.

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Begin the Beg-a-Loo: Sponsors Needed for I.V. Broadcast

July 16, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: Announcements

With a month to go until International Village, we're getting ready for our annual video broadcast of events, live from Renziehausen Park.

(Or, as one of our fans charmingly called it last year, "the geeks from the A.V. squad with the equipment they stole from the high school." Jealousy is such an ugly emotion, don't you think?)


We would like to raise $750. Donations may be tax-deductible as allowed by law. All donors will be acknowledged on our website, in a sign on our booth at International Village, and during the broadcasts.

You can make a donation by mailing a check or money order to Tube City Community Media Inc., P.O. Box 94, McKeesport, PA 15134-0094, or just click this button:

Any extra not spent on the International Village broadcast will go directly toward keeping our websites --- Tube City Online, and WMCK.FM --- operational.


If your business or organization would like to advertise during our International Village webcast, we need your information no later than Aug. 7! (Advertising does not qualify as a charitable contribution.)

Contact me at or call me (412) 614-9659.

For $135, we will make a minimum of one 30-second announcement every hour during the broadcast for your group, business or organization, plus we will run an ad on Tube City Online for at least 30 days. We'll also promote your group, business or organization on Twitter and Facebook.

For $250, we will make a minimum of one 60-second announcement every hour to promote your group, business or organization, plus we will run an ad on Tube City Online for at least 60 days. We'll also promote your group, business or organization on Twitter and Facebook.

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Four Honored in July for Upholding 'McKeesport Message'

July 15, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Mary of Nazareth Catholic School student Aleena Halaszynski was honored by McKeesport Mayor Michael Cherepko for upholding the value of "Love." Aleena, who just finished first grade, raised $1,300 for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

McKeesport Mayor Michael Cherepko and city council on Tuesday honored four people for upholding the "McKeesport Message" of "Respect, Dignity, Hope and Love."

Proclamations were presented to three of the four awardees during council's July meeting. Each of the awardees was nominated by the public and selected the McKeesport Message Committee, a subgroup of the Mayor's Select Committee on Crime and Violence.

Honored for this quarter were Walt Yager for upholding the value of "Respect," Tricia Hoover for upholding the value of "Dignity," Hasaan Allen for upholding the value of "Hope," and Aleena Halaszynski for upholding the value of "Love."

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School Taxes Increasing for McKeesport Area Property Owners

July 13, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

Related Story: School taxes may be paid at discount through Sept. 14

Many property owners in the McKeesport Area School District will be unhappy when their tax bills begin arriving next week.

School property taxes for the 2018-19 school year are increasing 2.11 mills this year, to 19.48 mills. The increase represents an addition $2.11 in taxes on each $1,000 of value of a property.

The increase, and the district's $67 million budget, were approved by an 8-1 vote at the district's June 27 meeting, with school director David Donato dissenting.

According to the real estate tracking website Zillow, the median home value in McKeesport is $55,300, while the median home value in White Oak is about twice as high, at $104,500. The taxes on a home valued at $55,300 will increase $116.68, while the taxes on a home valued at $104,500 will increase $220.50.

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172 Houses Head to Demolition; At Least 50 More to Be Added

July 13, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

McKeesport City Council this week added another 172 vacant buildings to its demolition list. The houses will be torn down using a mix of local and federal funds. Click the map to explore the locations.

From approximately "coast to coast" --- including both Atlantic Avenue and Pacific Avenue --- 172 additional vacant houses and commercial buildings have been approved for demolition by McKeesport City Council.

At least 50 more are expected to be scheduled for demolition in the next round, McKeesport Mayor Michael Cherepko promised city council this week. Virtually every neighborhood in the city will be touched this year, he said.

"Nothing's perfect, but overall, I think we did a good job when you talk about preserving the neighborhoods on the outskirts of the city, as well as those on the main thoroughfares," Cherepko said.

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School District Reminds Residents of 2 Percent Discount on Tax Bills

July 12, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Related Story: School taxes increasing for McKeesport Area property owners

School tax bills for McKeesport area residents may be paid at discount until Sept. 14, a spokeswoman said.

Tax bills are being mailed out today for property owners in the McKeesport Area School District, which includes the city, Dravosburg, South Versailles Twp. (Coulter), Versailles and White Oak, said Kristen Davis, spokeswoman.

A 2 percent discount applies to all taxes paid in full by Sept. 14. Anyone who has not received a tax bill or has paid their mortgage off this year should contact their local tax collector, Davis said.

School property taxes are increasing 2.11 mills this year, to 19.48 mills. The increase represents an addition $2.11 in taxes on each $1,000 of value of a property.

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County Police Make Arrest in N. Versailles Twp. Homicide

July 12, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Crime and Police News

A South Hills man has been charged in connection with the death of a man whose body was found July 8 in North Versailles Twp.

Darrel E. Hardy Jr., 29, was charged Thursday by Allegheny County police with criminal homicide, carrying a firearm without a license and tampering with evidence.

Hardy was already in jail after police accused him of setting a car fire the same day that investigators believe the victim, Zack Moore, 28, was shot.

Through the course of the investigation, county police said, they determined that the vehicle Hardy is accused of burning was the same vehicle in which detectives allege that Hardy shot Moore.

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Grandview Residents Demand Action From Water Authority

July 12, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

The water authority serving McKeesport says it has no record of any complaints about fire hydrants in the Grandview section of the city.

McKeesport Mayor Michael Cherepko and angry city residents disagree.

And they want the Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County to run a new water line to a neighborhood that has been plagued by fires, including a blaze on June 16 that leveled one family's home, heavily damaged a neighbor's home, and caused severe damage to at least four nearby houses.

Residents and city firefighters say lack of sufficient water at nearby hydrants hampered efforts to battle that fire, and other blazes.

"I have not been able to sleep," Norma Kwiecinski, who lives near the site of the June fire, told city council on Tuesday. "I'm really scared in our neighborhood and I want to know what's going to be done about this."

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City Council OK's Assessment of Penn-McKee Hotel

July 10, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

Conflict-of-Interest Note: The writer of this article has a conflict of interest. See editor's note.

(Photo by Nyttend via Wikimedia Commons)

McKeesport will partner with a Pittsburgh-based preservation society to determine whether the city's landmark Penn-McKee Hotel can be saved and reused for other purposes.

At Wednesday's meeting, council by 7-0 vote approved an agreement with the Young Preservationists Association to conduct an environmental assessment of the long-vacant hotel as well as an architectural and feasibility study.

Matthew Craig, executive director of the YPA, said the study will consider historic reuse of the entire block of Fifth Avenue between Strawberry and Mulberry alleys, which includes a former Moose lodge and several pre-Civil War houses.

YPA intends to work closely with city officials and volunteers throughout the process, Craig told council.

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Wilmerding YMCA to Close in August

July 10, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

The Wilmerding YMCA was expanded in 2006 at a cost of $750,000. The renovations, designed by Penner & Associates architects, added a two-story wellness center and family locker room and reconfigured the existing lobby and administrative area. (Photo copyright Penner & Associates.)

The YMCA in Wilmerding will close Aug. 31, a spokeswoman for the YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh has announced.

The closure of the facility on Ice Plant Hill Road is related to the Greater Pittsburgh Y's reorganization in federal bankruptcy court. The bankruptcy proceedings began May 8.

More than 1,100 Y members will be affected, along with six full-time employees and 70 part-time employees.

The Wilmerding Y was the last remaining facility in the Mon-Yough area, absorbing memberships of people who had belonged to the McKeesport YMCA. Closing the facility will save the Greater Pittsburgh Y about $163,000 per year.

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Man Found Dead Along N. Versailles Twp. Road; Suspects Sought

July 09, 2018 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

A man who was found dead Sunday morning alongside a highway in the Dixon Hollow area of North Versailles Twp. was likely shot inside a car, police said.

The victim was identified by the Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office as Zack Moore, 28, no address given. He was pronounced dead at the scene, police said.

Allegheny County police Lt. Andrew Schurman said township police and paramedics were dispatched to East Pittsburgh-McKeesport Boulevard just after 5:30 a.m. Sunday after a 9-1-1 caller reported that a man was lying on the road near Dixon Avenue.

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Message of Hope Carries Prayer Walk Through City's Downtown

July 09, 2018 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: News

* Correction appended. Rev. Truss' name was misspelled. We apologize for the error.

Rev. Earlene Coleman of Bethlehem Baptist Church charges up participants prior to a prayer walk Friday in Downtown McKeesport. (Vickie Babyak photo special to Tube City Almanac.)

Participants in a prayer walk through Downtown McKeesport on Friday carried with them a message of hope.

"We will not see our city destroyed," said the Rev. Earlene Coleman, pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church, before about 80 walkers set off from the McKees Point Marina. "We will not see McKeesport die, but it will live again."

The event was organized by the McKeesport Unit of the NAACP. Brenda Sawyer, unit president, said the walk --- up Fifth Avenue to UPMC McKeesport hospital, then back down Lysle Boulevard to the marina --- was "beautiful."

Participants included members of McKeesport city council and McKeesport Area school board, McKeesport Area School Superintendent Mark Holtzman Jr., state Rep. Austin Davis and state Sen. Jim Brewster.

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Prayer Walk Against Violence Planned Downtown on Friday

July 05, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

CORRECTION: This article had Brenda Sawyer's last name wrong. I apologize for the error. -JT

Members of the McKeesport unit of the NAACP will hold a prayer walk through Downtown on Friday evening to highlight the need for peace and an end to violence.

Brenda Sawyer, unit president, said all faiths and races are welcome to participate in the walk, which will begin at 5:30 p.m. at the McKees Point Marina and continue up Fifth Avenue to McKeesport & Versailles Cemetery, then return.

"I'm emphasizing this is a prayer walk and not a protest of any kind," Sawyer said. It's the first prayer walk organized by the McKeesport NAACP in recent memory, she said.

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After 20 Years, Teen-Ager's Unsolved Death Still Haunts, Hurts

July 04, 2018 |

By Lynne Glover | Posted in: Crime and Police News, News

Engraved on Kimmie Krimm’s marker: “When you look up into the evening sky and see the brightest star shining down on earth, pause for a moment and remember that star’s name is Kimberlie Rose Krimm.” (Lynne Glover photo, special to Tube City Almanac)

Having recently been released from the hospital, Jeanie Krimm said it was simply too much for her to plan a 20-year anniversary remembrance for her daughter, Kimberlie Rose Krimm.

Fourteen-year-old Kimberlie Krimm's body was found 20 years ago this week, on July 6, 1998, on a hillside at McKeesport & Versailles Cemetery by a utility worker.    

“People talk about pain,” said Jeanie Krimm, two decades after her daughter’s death. “They don’t know pain until they lose a child. I’ll never be the same. Never.”

Part of the suffering is not really knowing what happened to Kimberlie, and how and why she died. The cause and manner of Kimmie’s death were ruled “undetermined” by the Allegheny County Coroner's Office—and it was never officially declared a homicide.

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Zoot Island Will Rock Renzie Before July 4 Fireworks Display

July 04, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

(Courtesy Dr. Zoot and Zoot Island)

A band that describes itself as "a perfect mix of Caribbean, Latin, reggae and American Top 40" will rock Renziehausen Park before what organizers hope will be a perfect mix of fireworks for Independence Day.

Zoot Island --- made up of members of the Dr. Zoot swing band --- will take the stage at the Lions Bandshell at 7 p.m. Wednesday.

The concert is sponsored by the McKeesport Lions Club, the Allegheny Regional Asset District, the city of McKeesport and Mayor Michael Cherepko. Admission is free but attendees should bring a blanket or chair to sit on.

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St. Angela Slates Annual Parish Festival July 12, 13, 14

July 03, 2018 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements, White Oak News

(Photo courtesy St. Angela Merici Church via Facebook)

St. Angela Merici Church, 1640 Fawcett Ave., White Oak, will hold its Family Festival from 6 to 10 p.m. July 12, 13 and 14, a spokeswoman said.

Nightly attractions will include "a huge flea market," basket raffle, Kids’ Kingdom, card games, midway games, bake sale and bingo.

The main food booth will include stuffed cabbage, haluski, pierogies, grilled foods and an Italian booth with homemade pizza and hot sausage. Kids’ favorites and walking tacos also will be available.

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Work Begins on Renzie Pavilion Renovations; Contract OK'd for Amphitheater

July 03, 2018 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: News

Work began this week on renovations to the first of five pavilions at Renziehausen Park.

And, in a separate development, McKeesport officials have given a contractor orders to proceed with construction of a new amphitheater at Gergely Park on the Youghiogheny River waterfront.

General contractor on the $184,750 project to repair four pavilions at Renzie is Plavchak Construction Co. of Jefferson Hills. The work will include new roofs, signage, benches and other updates to four pavilions.

McKeesport officials had hoped the renovations would be completed in the spring. But A.J. Tedesco, city community development director, told The Almanac the city decided to plan the work around pavilion rentals to minimize inconvenience to park visitors.

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