Penn State’s Free Store Reopens for Fall

October 20, 2021 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

Penn State Greater Allegheny will reopen its Free Store 15132 this week, a spokeswoman said.

The store is located on the lower level of the Frable Building on the McKeesport campus.

A “free store” redistributes unwanted items in good condition to people that need them. The Free Store 15132 was originally opened in 2017 as part of Penn State Greater Allegheny’s Sustainability Signature Program. Available items may have ended up in landfills, but now have a new purpose for those with a need.

The concept was invented in San Francisco in the 1960s but was repopularlized locally by Giselle Fetterman, wife of then-Braddock mayor, now lieutentant governor, John Fetterman.

 
Read More

Jerome Bridge Closure Planned Thursday AM

October 19, 2021 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

The Jerome Avenue Bridge will be closed to all traffic early Thursday morning so that construction work can continue, the state Department of Transportation announced.

The eastbound lane, from 10th Ward to Downtown McKeesport, will be closed to traffic between 2 and 5 a.m. Thursday (Oct. 21), weather-permitting, so that crews can place parts of the bridge deck.

The eastbound lane also was closed Sunday for bridge deck replacement work Co. is the prime contractor.

 
Read More

W.N. Library Plans ‘Fill-a-Bag’ Book Sale

October 19, 2021 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements, West Newton News

Due to inclement weather, the West Newton Public Library will hold its “fill-a-bag” used book sale at the West Newton gymnasium at the corner of Vine and Fifth streets, a spokesperson said.

Hours are 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Oct. 22 and 23.

 

Speaker: Women Vets Face Unique Challenges

October 19, 2021 |

By Vickie Babyak | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Lee Wagner, shown at left, is program manager for Veterans Place of Washington Boulevard. He spoke to members of the Altrusa clubs during a meeting in McKeesport on Saturday. (Vickie Babyak photo for Tube City Almanac)


Lee Wagner wants to help break down the barriers and stigma attached to frightening topics like suicide and substance abuse among veterans.

Wagner, the program manager for Pittsburgh-based Veterans Place of Washington Boulevard, is a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and a graduate of Robert Morris and Point Park universities. He spoke Saturday at a workshop for members of Altrusa International, hosted by the McKeesport Altrusa club.

“I don’t talk about happy things,” Wagner warned club members. Instead, he talked about the special challenges faced by women who have served in the military, and the resources available for them.

 
Read More

Family Expands Mission with New Business

October 18, 2021 |

By Sarah Turnbull | Posted in: White Oak News

Members of the Young Rotarians of District 7305 help unload donations at McKeesport Agape Center. The charity, located on Lincoln Way in White Oak, opened a cafe in September. (Young Rotarians of District 7305 via Facebook)


When Kelly Doyle opened McKeesport Agape Center in 2019, she knew she wanted to love and serve her community like God.

In September, Kelly and her husband Mike expanded their mission by opening a restaurant, Cheese and MAC Café.

“The more people knew about us, the more requests we got. Our needs and cost kept going up, so we needed a way to raise funds. Plus, it’s a good play on words,” Doyle said.

Located on Lincoln Way next to PNC Bank, Cheese and MAC Café serves breakfast sandwiches, pastries, bagels, fudge, cheesecake and more. All the proceeds go to the McKeesport Agape Center.

 
Read More

Bus Woes Leave Districts, Parents Frustrated

October 18, 2021 |

By Siana Emery | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Parked school buses sit idle near Chicago. (John Picken photo via Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons CC BY 2.0)


After weeks of cancellations that have stranded hundreds of students, McKeesport Area School District and its school bus provider are operating under an agreement being monitored by an Allegheny County judge.

But McKeesport students aren’t the only ones who have found the beginning of the 2021-22 school year to be a bumpy ride.

On Monday, as part of School Bus Safety Week, the state Department of Transportation released a public service announcement from Rick Focht of Clearfield County-based Fullington Trailways Co. appealing for more drivers.

“Students are 70 times more likely to get to school safely riding on a school bus than in a private car. And the drivers are skilled professionals,” Focht said.

“Unfortunately there is a shortage of school bus drivers,” he said, urging viewers to contact their local school bus providers or school districts for information about employment: “It just might be the best job you never knew you would love.”

 
Read More

Former Murphy Warehouse Sold to Wisc. Group

October 18, 2021 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

(File photo)


A Wisconsin-based investment group is purchasing the former G.C. Murphy Co. distribution center in Christy Park and plans to “immediately commence upgrades to the facility to accommodate new tenant occupancy.”

Phoenix Investors LLC announced Monday that it will purchase the 627,000-square-foot facility, which stretches over 36 acres between 28th and 35th avenues.

The building has been occupied since 1995 by Magic Creations, which manufactures and distributes plastic housewares and other items to discount stores. The company will continue to occupy a portion of the facility, Anthony Crivello, executive vice president of Phoenix Investors, told Tube City Almanac.

Terms of the deal are not yet being disclosed, Crivello said.

 
Read More

Tiger Band Hosts Competition Saturday

October 14, 2021 |

By Bonnijean Cooney Adams | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Drum major Josh Wos leads the Tiger Marching Band in fine tuning "SOLARbration!" for its exhibition at the Oct. 16 home show. (Bonnijean Cooney Adams photo for Tube City Almanac)


After months of preparation, McKeesport Band, Orchestra, and Guard Boosters will host the Tournament of Bands Competition home show on Saturday.

It will feature performances by 10 high school bands and and exhibition by the home band of its popular “SOLARbration!” The show starts at 5 p.m. at Weigle-Schaffer Stadium, 1960 Eden Park Blvd.

“This season has been a very memorable one with the return of band competitions and our home show showcasing the music talents of so many young people,” McKeesport Area High School Tiger Marching Band director Drew DeCarlo said.

 
Read More

W.N. Church Plans Election Day Lunch

October 14, 2021 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements, West Newton News

First Church of God, 157 North Second St., West Newton will hold an election day lunch from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 2, a spokesperson said.

Selections will include chili, chicken noodle or broccoli cheese soup, chicken salad and ham barbecue sandwiches, hot dogs with sauerkraut, potato salad or macaroni salad, and pie or cake. For more information, call (724) 872-7467.

 

Jerome Avenue Bridge Closed Sunday Night

October 14, 2021 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements

All lanes of the Jerome Avenue Bridge will be closed Sunday night so that crews can replace portions of the bridge deck, a district spokesman for the state Department of Transportation said.

The inbound lanes from 10th Ward to Downtown McKeesport will be closed from 5 p.m. Sunday through 5 a.m. Monday morning, weather-permitting. Eastbound traffic will be detoured via River Road, the 15th Avenue Bridge and Walnut Street.

As a reminder, the Jerome Avenue Bridge is closed in the westbound direction around-the-clock through November.

 
Read More

Additional Security in Place at EA

October 14, 2021 |

By Kristen Keleschenyi | Posted in: North Versailles Twp. News

Increased security and police presence are being utilized throughout the East Allegheny School District this week.

Early Tuesday morning, a threat of violence was made via social media against the junior-senior high school, officials said.

Although North Versailles Twp. police determined the threat had only minor credibility, the district is taking the additional measures to “ensure a safe school experience for all and hopefully alleviate some anxieties” parents and students are feeling, according to a statement posted on the district’s Facebook page from Jamie Griesbaum, district secretary, on behalf of Superintendent Alan Johnson.

 
Read More

W.O. Council Divided Over Legal Fees

October 12, 2021 |

By Sarah Turnbull | Posted in: White Oak News

White Oak borough will consider adding three additional vacant homes to the list of structures already targeted for demoltion.

Under Pennsylvania’s Act 152, every county in the state can collect a fee for blight removal whenever a deed or mortgage is recorded at the courthouse. Borough manager John Palyo suggested using the revenue from that fee to tear down abandoned structures.

“If we’re budgeting funds for demolitions, why not do more? We could proceed with more properties even without grant money,” Palyo said.

 
Read More

Vacant Houses Sap Energy from Residents

October 12, 2021 |

By Vickie Babyak | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Robin Marshall-Kelly points out the overgrowth in the empty lot next to her home on North Grandview Avenue. (Vickie Babyak photo for Tube City Almanac)


See also: City Continues Fight Against Blight


For many residents of McKeesport, the battle against blight is one worth fighting, even though the struggle can feel overwhelming at times.

“Help us stay in McKeesport,” said Robin Marshall-Kelly, a North Grandview Avenue homeowner. “I own my home, and with all the abandoned properties, sometimes, I feel like I’m losing.”

Jackie Blake has lived in McKeesport for 27 years and owns her home in Grandview.

“My friends keep asking me when am I going to move, but I have too much invested in my home,” Blake said. “I don’t want to move.”

 
Read More

Fight Against Blight is City’s ‘Biggest Challenge’

October 12, 2021 |

By Sarah Turnbull | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

McKeesport Mayor Mike Cherepko: “You have to attack this issue from every angle and focus on what will have the greatest impact on the city as a whole.” The blight removal program has received “an overwhelming amount of positive feedback,” he says. (Vickie Babyak photo for Tube City Almanac)


See also: Vacant Houses Sap Energy from Longtime Residents


When Mike Cherepko was elected mayor of McKeesport in 2011, he knew he wanted to fulfill his campaign motto “Working Together for a Better McKeesport” specifically by cleaning up blight.

Traditionally defined as the decline of an urban area due to neglect or age, blight is one of the key issues facing the Cherepko administration.

“Blight is any structure that becomes an eyesore, or poses a health or fire risk – like rodents, mold or weeds,” Cherepko said. “It’s my biggest challenge as mayor.”

 
Read More

NV Twp. Church Plans ‘Trunk-or-Treat’

October 08, 2021 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: Announcements, North Versailles Twp. News

(Submitted photo)

St. John’s Lutheran Church, located on Route 30 in North Versailles Twp., will hold a “trunk-or-treat” event from 1 to 3 p.m. Oct. 30, a spokeswoman said.

The church’s new pastor, Rev. Dr. Kimberly Greway, also will be on hand to introduce herself to the community.

The church will provide games and prizes and refreshments will be served. Following the “trunk-or-treat,” there will be a scavenger hunt, crafts and an obstacle course in the soclal hall.

 
Read More

W.O. Parish Slates Fall Bingo on Oct. 24

October 08, 2021 |

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

Mary, Mother of God Parish will host a Fantastic Fall Bingo Oct. 24 in the St. Angela Gym, 1640 Fawcett Avenue, White Oak, a spokeswoman said.

Doors open at 12 noon and the Early Bird game begins at 1 p.m. In addition to bingo, the event will feature a 50/50 raffle and basket auction. Food will be available for purchase.

Tickets are $30 and include 16 regular bingo games, four specials and a $1,000 jackpot. Individuals purchasing tickets prior to Oct. 24 will be entered into a special drawing.

 
Read More

Animal Shelter Kicks Off New Fundraiser

October 08, 2021 |

By Sarah Turnbull | Posted in: White Oak News

Dawn Lewandowski of North Huntingdon Twp. holds Artemis, one of the cats who were available for adoption at the White Oak Animal Safe Haven during the Sept. 25 Fido Food Truck Fest. (Sarah Turnbull photo for Tube City Almanac)


The White Oak Animal Safe Haven held its first Fido Food Truck Fest on Sept. 25.

Five food trucks — Lil Sista Sweets, Bull River Taco, Good to Go, Sweet Buzz Bean and Bistro and Truckin Triangles — gathered at the White Oak Volunteer Fire Dept.

According to shelter director Laura Massie, the festival was born out of a desire to switch things up, along with supporting the shelter.

“This is the first year we’ve done it…it’s brand new,” Massie said. “We usually do the Fido ball, but we had to switch things up because of COVID.”

 
Read More

Davis Urges Residents to Get Vaccinated

October 07, 2021 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

State Rep. Austin Davis speaks about the COVID-19 vaccine during a press conference April 8 at Bethlehem Baptist Church, Downtown. (Submitted photo courtesy state Rep. Austin Davis)


The 35th Legislative District has one of the lowest COVID-19 vaccination rates in Pennsylvania, state Rep. Austin Davis said Wednesday.

Davis, who has represented the district since 2018, urged residents who have not yet been vaccinated to get their shots.

“We simply cannot afford to repeat a surge of the virus like last winter and put even more stress on our healthcare providers, businesses, schools and communities, which have already been through so much in the last 18 months,” Davis said.

 
Read More

Bus Company, School District Trade Accusations

October 07, 2021 |

By Siana Emery | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

McKeesport Area School District and Pennsylvania Coach Lines traded accusations this week in their ongoing dispute over the bus company’s inability to provide enough drivers on certain routes.

Attorneys for both sides were scheduled to present arguments Thursday before Allegheny County Judge Arnold Klein in Pittsburgh.

In a court filing Tuesday, attorneys for Pennsylvania Coach Lines accused the school district of deliberately trying to breach its contract with the bus company.

The district responded Wednesday by again asking Klein to grant its motion for an emergency injunction.

 
Read More

Shelter CEO Says City Isn’t Being Supportive

October 07, 2021 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

The head of a McKeesport-based charity that helps homeless men struggling with drug and alcohol addiction told city council on Wednesday his agency is not receiving the local support it needs.

During a public comment period, Keith Giles, founder and chief executive officer of First Step Recovery Homes Inc., said he has asked several times for financial support from city officials and the McKeesport Community Fund — a charitable foundation on which several city officials serve — without a response.

“Please understand that we at First Step have been hanging on by a thread,” Giles said. “We are a viable entity in the city, and want to continue our much-needed service, but financial assistance is much needed.”

But Mayor Michael Cherepko told Giles the city has responded to First Step’s requests. “You just didn’t like what I had to say,” he said.

 
Read More

Demolition Set for Fifth Ave. Buildings

October 06, 2021 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Conflict of Interest Note: The author of this story has a conflict of interest. See editor’s note at the end of the story.

These buildings, seen from the McKeesport Transportation Center on Lysle Boulevard, will be demolished under a contract awarded Wednesday by McKeesport city council. (Tube City Almanac file photo)


Seven more buildings in the city’s Downtown business district — including the former G.C. Murphy Co. home office and Helmstadter’s Department Store — are one step closer to the wrecking ball.

McKeesport City Council on Wednesday by 6-0 vote awarded a $644,000 contract to Advanced Builders Inc. of Perryopolis, Fayette County, to demolish 513, 515, 519, 521, 523, 527 and 531 Fifth Ave. Councilman Tim Brown was absent.

“We’re excited to get through this,” McKeesport Mayor Michael Cherepko said. “This is a contract for probably two-thirds of the block, across the street from city hall. We wanted to rip down the entire block at once, and we have one individual who’s holding us up.”

 
Read More

Penn State Series to Discuss Police Reform

October 06, 2021 |

By Submitted Report | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Policing and the community will be the focus of this year’s Crossing Bridges summit at Penn State Greater Allegheny in McKeesport.

The sessions will build off of issues raised in a report delivered by the Community Taskforce for Police Reform, which was convened in 2020 by Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto.

The first session, scheduled for 3 p.m. Oct. 14, will be titled “Examining Police Reform: Conversations about the Pittsburgh Community Taskforce for Police Reform and Its Implications for the Mon Valley.”

 
Read More

Marijuana Firm Commits $10M To Expansion

October 05, 2021 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Trulieve Cannabis Corp., which acquired McKeesport-based PurePenn in 2020, is purchasing three buildings and approximately 37 acres of property in the city’s industrial park, RIDC announced Tuesday. (Tube City Almanac photo)


A medical-marijuana producer has committed $10.4 million toward expanding its operations in the city’s industrial park, with the possibility of adding 800 jobs.

Trulieve Cannabis Corp., which purchased McKeesport-based PurePenn in 2020, is acquiring approximately 37 acres of property and three buildings, Regional Industrial Development Corp. announced Tuesday.

The purchase includes McKeesport Commons I — the former EchoStar call center — and McKeesport Commons II, a vacant building next door. Trulieve also is acquiring the guard shack located at the Locust Street railroad crossing, RIDC said.

Discussions about selling the two McKeesport Commons buildings have been ongoing “ever since the acquisition of PurePenn by Trulieve,” said Timothy White, senior vice president for development at RIDC. “They’ve obviously had some aggressive expansion plans and they’ve been looking at McKeesport as a place to expand and grow.”

 
Read More

Photo Collage of Local Faces Graces City Hall

October 04, 2021 |

By Vickie Babyak | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

Tristian Banks and Calise Johnson, two of the YouthCast photographers, stand in front of the mural unveiled on Saturday. (Vickie Babyak photo for Tube City Almanac)


A new mural decorating McKeesport City Hall features the faces of ordinary residents, as captured by youth photographers.

The mural, unveiled at 12 noon Saturday, is a collage of photos captured over the past two years by teen-agers from McKeesport’s YouthCAST program with guidance from Martha Rial, a Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer who oversees Point Park University’s McKeesport Community Newsroom.

YouthCAST members have been talking with residents, giving elderly people roses and learning about photography as they made portraits of McKeesport residents from different backgrounds and of different ages.

 
Read More

Duquesne Man Charged in Drug Arrest

October 02, 2021 |

By Staff Reports | Posted in: Crime and Police News

Cash, narcotics and a so-called “ghost gun” were seized Friday morning from a home in Duquesne, county police said.

The resident, Rashaad T. Fitzgerald, 29, is currently being held in the Allegheny County Jail in lieu of $50,000 bond on charges of possession of controlled substances, possession with intent to deliver, endangering the welfare of children, tampering with physical evidence and unlawful possession of a firearm.

Allegheny County police said narcotics investigators have been tracking Fitzgerald for several months and obtained a search warrant for his home in the 900 block of State Street.

 
Read More

Parents of Slain Teen Seek Answers

October 02, 2021 |

By Jason A. Mignanelli | Posted in: Crime and Police News

Shantel Pizaro, mother of Steven Eason Jr., speaks to the media on Friday outside Allegheny County police headquarters. Eason was shot twice on Sept. 11 outside the Haunted Hills Hayride in North Versailles Twp. (Jason A. Mignanelli photo for Tube City Almanac)


“I can’t sleep. I can’t rest. I can’t even start healing, knowing that the person who killed my son is walking around,” said Shantel Pizaro on Friday.

Pizaro’s son, 15-year-old Steven Eason of Penn Hills, was shot Sept. 11 outside the Haunted Hills Hayride in North Versailles Twp. and died a short time later. Another teen-ager was wounded.

“We need to be leaders,” Pizaro said during a press conference at Allegheny County Police headquarters in Green Tree. “We need to instill good morals in our children. Someone knows something and this could be causing trauma to those young kids who know what happened. They need to let the truth come out.”

 
Read More

Locust Street Fire Under Investigation

October 02, 2021 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

A two-alarm fire that gutted a house in the 1300 block of Locust Street on Thursday night is under investigation by McKeesport police and the Allegheny County fire marshal’s office.

The two-story wood-frame home was supposedly vacant, but firefighters found evidence that someone had been living in the structure, including mail in the mailbox and clothing and personal items inside, said McKeesport deputy fire Chief Gene Esken.

Crews were dispatched just before 8:30 p.m. and arrived to find flames visible in multiple windows, Esken said.

 
Read More

District Seeks Court Action Against Bus Company

October 01, 2021 |

By Jason Togyer | Posted in: McKeesport and Region News

The dispute between McKeesport Area School District and Pennsylvania Coach Lines is going back to court.

On Thursday — when buses on five different routes didn’t show up as scheduled — the district filed an emergency motion before Allegheny County Judge Arnold Klein asking for a court order to compel the bus company to provide service.

The district’s move came two days after Propel Charter School and Young Scholars of Greater Allegheny Charter School filed their own request for a preliminary injunction or special relief against the bus company.

In Tuesday’s filing, attorneys for the charter schools argued that students are suffering “immediate and irreparable harm” from being “stranded and unable to attend school.”

 
Read More

Google™ Custom Search
McKeesport booked.net
+69°F

High: +69°

Low: +59°