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January 31, 2014

A Byrd’s Eye View N











150th Edition Lone Survivor Makes A True Story Very Realistic For The Audience By Art Byrd

A Quote By

From the opening montage of the tough military training showing some soldiers giving up and others enduring. Lone Survivor takes us into a world of one of the military’s elite team, the Navy SEALs. Director Peter Berg takes the audience into the Navy SEALs world as they prepare for a mission take out Shah, a Taliban terrorist who was responsible for the death of 19 soldiers. The movie is based on Navy SEALs Marcus Luttrell’s memoirs of a book of the same title. The mission was to be carried out not by squad but by only four Navy SEALs. Luttrell played by Mark Wahlberg, Lieut. Mike Murphy (Taylor Kitsch) and petty officer officers second-class Danny Dietz (Emile Hirsch) and Matt Axelson (Ben Foster). I like the way Berg lets us as the audience, be present as the game plan for the mission was being explained by the Navy SEALs. It was obvious, they knew what they were doing. The plan seemed solid. In the dark, the Navy SEALs are dropped on the ground in Afghanistan. After traveling on foot over mountains and rough terrain, they find the village where the Shah is. While waiting for the time to strike the village, the SEALs encounter goat herders: an old man, a young boy and an angry young man.

“Put paying your dues and all that puts so much into being a success. You have an understanding of what it's about, being on your own for three or four years and living day to day on $3, or living in an apartment with no electricity.” Taylor Kitsch, Actor, who currently stars in Lone Survivor in theaters now.

January 31, 2014

The SEALs must make a decision to tie them up where they would die on the mountain and continue the mission or set them free and ending the mission. They would based their action on the protocol that states not to kill innocent civilians. The SEALs decide to let them go. Very soon after, the SEALs are being hunted down by the Afghanistan militants from the village. The action scenes are realistic and somewhat claustrophobic, as the audience, we are right next to the SEALs as they are wounded and continue to fight for their lives. Lone Survivor takes a long time to get going with dialogue and lots of explaining by the characters. Even with the fighting and survival scenes, I wasn’t sure what I was feeling towards the movie. I was neutral because the SEALs efforts to survive felt like a no win situation. This is rare, as I am writing this review. I’m still not sure if I like Lone Survivor or not. The movie did give me a sense of pride that we have Americans that sacrificed their lives in the service of our country.

Local Toastmasters Club Is Having An Open House Youngstown Executive 408 Toastmasters Club’s Open House gives guests a chance to meet members and hear them talk about how to become a comfortable public speaker and an effective leader. After a brief meet-and-greet period, members and guests will enjoy a regular Toastmasters meeting that will include Table Topics (impromptu speeches), prepared speeches and evaluations. The open house will be Monday, February 10th, 2014 from 6:40 pm to 8:45 pm at Shepherd Of The Valley in Poland at . The Open House is free and the public is encouraged to come by. Refreshments will be provided. Free parking is available at Shepherd Of The Valley, 301 West Western Reserve Road, Poland, OH 44514 near Glenwood Ave. For information about Executive 408, please visit

January 31, 2014

Salvatore's: Now That's Italian! By Monnie Ryan Editor's note: To read the full version of this review, visit http:// For quite a few years, my husband Jack and I enjoyed occasional visits to Salvatore's Italian Grill in Howland Township. Since we moved to Mineral Ridge, though, the Austintown location has become the place to head; most recently, we acquired a taste for flatbread-style pizza and discovered some real treats here. A late lunch of the Monte Cristo (white pizza with spinach, sun-dried tomatoes, fresh tomatoes, mozzarella and ricotta cheeses, $8.50) for me and an Old World Brier Hill for Jack (sauteed green peppers, onions and marinara sauce sprinkled with Romano cheese to which he adds pepperoni, $6.50 plus a buck for the extra topping, became almost a habit during the hot months of last summer. Not long ago, we headed back for lunch. This time, though, we weren't in the mood for pizza; instead, Jack ordered his always-favorite Philly steak sandwich ($9), substituting a salad for the fries for a $1.50 upcharge. The raspberry vinaigrette dressing, he said, is outstanding. First came the usual basket of "regular" pizza squares and two crispy-on-the-outside warm Italian rolls. We tried hard not to fill up on them so we'd have no room for our entrees, but it was a struggle. Since I was on the hungry side (plus I figured I could bring anything left over home for later), my choice was the lunch special sausage and green peppers over penne pasta ($8.99). Instead of a salad, I picked wedding soup, which is always delicious here, filled with lots of goodies. The pasta was excellent, and as expected, I brought home more than half of what was in my very large bowl. Those who prefer baked Italian specialties should love the Eggplant Parmigiana or Lasagna Classico ($12.50 each, dinner portion) or the Stuffed Eggplant Rollantini (eggplant stuffed with ricotta cheese and ham topped with marinara sauce and mozzarella cheese with a side of angel hair pasta ($11.50). As for Jack, he swears the chicken alla cacciatore is better here than anywhere else ($13.50). The mushrooms, green peppers and fresh tomatoes complement the boneless chicken breast, and the marinara sauce is outstanding. Not too long ago when a couple of friends were visiting here from Columbus, we took them to Salvatore's for dinner and discovered a really great deal: Two dinners and a whole bottle of wine for $29.99. The wines (we picked cabernets) were quite good - no $4.95 unknown brand here - and each of us got to choose the entree we wanted (for me, it was that Penne Alla Arrabiata). One of these days, we're going to go for dinner just the two of us and do it all over again. If you go: Salvatore's Italian Grill 4831 Mahoning Ave. Austintown, Ohio 44515 (330) 799-2285 Open Monday through Thursday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; Sunday noon to 8 p.m.

January 31, 2014

Hard Case is Easy Reading By Monnie Ryan 4 stars out of 5 I was made aware of this book, the first in a series featuring former Marine Corps special ops guy turned freelancer and extreme cage fighter John Harding, through an offer to download it for 99 cents. I'm not even sure why I took a closer look, except it was the first in a series, so if I liked it, I'd be able to look forward to more; and, I liked that it had earned an average of 4-1/2 stars from 76 reviewers. The clincher, though, was learning that Harding spent his teenage years in Leavittsburg, Ohio. Say what? Leavittsburg is a very small community of a couple of thousand residents along the Mahoning River in Trumbull County not many miles from my home - and it's so small that it's unlikely anyone would mention it in a book unless he or she were familiar with it. So I did a little sleuthing of my own; I didn't unearth much except that the author at one time attended the now-closed Western Reserve High School in nearby Warren, Ohio, and thus Leavittsburg would have been almost in his back yard. But that was enough for me to say what the heck? It was less than a buck, and I was intrigued. And now that I've finished it, I'm hooked. Harding, it seems, ran away from his Leavittsburg home and an extremely abusive father at age 14; with a little age adjustment, he got into military service, where he performed spectacularly and learned several languages. Subsequently, he's recruited by a CIA agent to take on special projects that must remain under the government radar - most of which involve utilizing his special skills and killing bad guys. To supplement that income and satisfy his need for violence, he earns money as an extreme cage fighter and takes on odd jobs doing bodyguard and skip trace work for his manager. Along the way, Harding manages to knock the stuffing out of an extreme fighter backed by the Russian mob, thus putting himself in their crosshairs. At the same time, he's recruited to protect a young Afghani woman he knew as a child when he was doing military service there - now grown, she's come to America to speak out against the atrocities happening back at home. Helping Harding with the latter task is lawyer and love interest Tess Connagher (it's her law firm that was directed to hire Harding to protect the Afghani woman). Since there are two more books in the series that I know of - Hard Case - The Lure of Hell and Hard Case - Voyage of the Damned - it's clear from the beginning of this one that Harding will survive. And given his background and occupation, it's also clear there'll be no shortage of knock-down, drag-out fights in this book. In fact, those events are pretty much ongoing - moving from action in the field to action in a cage. People get killed right and left (but, as Harding points out, he doesn't kill people who don't deserve it). There's a little romance, a little humor here and there, and the result is that it's really a good book that held my attention all the way to the end. I will caution, though, that it you don't like reading about blood and guts, this probably isn't your style. As for me, bring on the next one! Hard Case by Bernard Lee DeLeo (RJ Parker Publishing, November 2013), 288 pp.

January 31, 2014

The First TEDx Youngstown Was A Huge Success By Art Byrd TED was founded in 1984 with an early emphasis on technology and design. Later, it would grow to include entertainment. The TED slogan is “ideas worth spreading.” The one time event expanded into conferences in Monterey, California. TED Talks, as they are referred to, offer a wide range of topics and ideas, mostly told through storytelling like Brene Brown’s “The Power of Vulnerability to Michael Specter’s The Dangers of Science Denial.” The speakers get a maximum of 18 minutes to present their topics and ideas. As of January 2014, over 1600 talks are available online for free. In 2009, the TED organization granted licenses to third parties to organize independent TED like events. They became TEDx. Lori Shandor, who had been watching TED videos for several years decided to bring one to the Valley. She sent in an application and it was accepted by TED. Shandor became the curator of TEDxYoungstown. The theme for TEDxYoungstown would be” innovation. Shandor says “It is about innovation, it is not necessarily just manufacturing or product, it is innovation of everything around us, the changing of Youngstown, the changing of the Valley and the changing of the people here, it’s a perfect theme for us.” She went to the Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County, the Youngstown Business Incubator and the Mahoning Valley Young Professionals to help put the event together. The library felt it was important for them to be involved with TEDx Youngstown, Debbie Liptak, development director of the Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County explains ” To spark some ideas, people getting interested in reading books, searching out new ideas as well as looking to other communities for great ideas to bring to our community.” Heidi Daniels, the library’s executive director felt “anytime there is information to be exchanged, education, innovation, the library fills that it is their job to be part of it.” TEDx Youngstown’s selection committee picked 18 speakers from the area to express their thoughts on innovation. One speaker, Rose Schaffer, director of marketing at the Youngstown Business Incubator said “I just wanted talk about how we can use communication, social media, how we can use different forms of communications to build up the community.” The inaugural TEDx Youngstown took place on January 24 and was a success with over 100 in attendance and over 200 visitors watching the live streaming of the event on the internet. There are plans underway for the 2015 TEDxYoungstown.

January 31, 2014

What’s Happening Around the The Valley: Feb 1-9 Saturday February 1 Annual Nature Photography Exhibit Mill Creek MetroParks will be accepting applications for its annual Nature Photography Exhibit through Sunday, February 9th. Applications are available at The annual Nature Photography Exhibit runs from Saturday, February 22nd through Sunday, March 9th in the Ford Nature Center. More information is available at (330) 702-3000. The Ford Nature Center is at 840 Old Furnace Road, Youngstown.

The African Marketplace The Youngstown State University Diversity and Multicultural Affairs Office presents The African Marketplace from Noon until 6 p.m. in the Chestnut Room of Kilcawley Center. The African Marketplace will include art objects, jewelry, and Afrocentric writings and literature, and will also feature dance and musical entertainment. More information about this event is available at (330) 941-3097.

President William McKinley Birthday Celebration The McKinley Memorial Library and McKinley Birthplace Home and Research Center presents a President William McKinley Birthday Celebration from 2 until 4 p.m. This event will feature tours of the McKinley Birthplace Home, refreshments, and more. More information about this free event is available at (330) 652-1704, extension 212. The McKinley Memorial Library and McKinley Birthplace Home and Research Center is at 40 North Main Street in Niles.

Sunday, February 2 The Area Artists Annual The Area Artists Annual, an art exhibition, will be at the Butler Institute of American Art and run through Feb. 23. The exhibition, now in its 76th year, will be on display in the MacIntosh, Hynes-Finnegan and Davis Galleries, located on the second level of the museum. at 524 Wick Ave. Works by artists who reside in Mahoning, Trumbull, Columbiana, Mercer and Lawrence counties are included in the show. The Butler is located at 524 Wick Ave, Youngstown

Hot Topix Is Having Back To Back Events In February Hot Topix is presenting First Friday (FF) and Night Out. First will happen on Friday, February 7 at 9 p.m at the Wing Warehouse Sports Bar and Grill in Niles. FF will feature a pool tournament, speed dating, 50.50 cash giveaway and R&B/Neo Soul and Jazz sounds. Admission $5.00. Night Out gets underway at 9 p.m on Saturday, February 8 at Choice’s Night Club in Girard. The event will have luxury seating and a dance floor. Admission is $10.00. Wing Warehouse is located at 5555 Youngstown-Warren Road in Niles. Choices Night Club is at 1620 Motor Inn Dr in Girard.

January 31, 2014

What’s Happening Around the The Valley: Feb 1-9 (cont’d) Monday, February 3 Old World Traditions - Lost And Retained Lecture The Ohio Cultural Alliance presents an Old World Traditions - Lost And Retained Lecture by Stephen Hanzely, who will discuss Hungarian traditions at 6 p.m. at the Georgetown Banquet Center. Dr. Hanzely is a native of Hungary and immigrated to the United States several decades ago, and is a retiree of the Youngstown State University Physics Department. Cultural enrichment will be provided by a Youngstown Symphony String Quartet performing Hungarian music. Reservations and more information about the lecture and the dinner are available at The Georgetown Banquet Center 5945 South Avenue, on the corner of Mathews Road and South Avenue) in Boardman.

Wednesday, February 4 Youngstown State University Jazz Ensemble The Dana School of Music presents the Youngstown State University Jazz Ensemble 1 in a free performance entitled The Music Of Tadd Dameron for Harlan Leonard And His Rockets at 7 p.m. at The Hub in Kilcawley Center, on the campus of YSU. More information about this performance is available at (330) 941-3636. 

Sunday, February 9 Silent film Metropolis with live organ music Stambaugh Auditorium having a screening of the silent film Metropolis, accompanied with live organ music performed by Peter Richard Conte on the Auditorium's E.M Skinner Pipe Organ at 4 p.m. Mr. Conte is the Grand Court Organist of the Wanamaker Organ in Macy's located at City Center in Philadelphia. The 1927 film Metropolis, is set in a futuristic, urban dystopia, and follows the attempts of a couple to overcome the vast gulf that separates the classes of their city.

Cookie Table & Cocktails Is Being Served Again The Mahoning Valley Historical Society's second annual Cookie Table & Cocktails fundraiser will benefit new exhibits and educational programs at the Tyler Mahoning Valley History Center. Guests can enjoy dancing, take a taste any number of appetizers and beverages, see a collection of historic wedding attire, place bids on artwork, baskets and goodies in the silent auction, and, of course, taste a wide selection of cookies, biscotti, pretzels, pizzelles, small cupcakes, and more.   Cookies Table & Cocktails gets underway at 7pm on Saturday, February 8. For tickets and information: call 330-743-2589 Tyler Mahoning Valley History Center is located at 325 W Federal St,

January 31, 2014

On Stage New Castle Playhouse: Other Desert Cities New Castle Playhouse brings the drama, Other Desert Cities, running weekends through Sunday, February 16th in the Annex Theatre. Other Desert Cities takes place in Palm Springs as the Wyeth family gathers for the Christmas holiday, when daughter Brooke, announces that she will be publishing a memoir dredging up a pivotal and tragic event in the family's history. Evening performances begin at 7:30 p.m. and the Sunday matinees are at 2 p.m. Tickets and more information about this show are available at (724) 654-3437. New Castle Playhouse 202 East Long Avenue, New Castle, PA

The Oakland Center for the Arts: Ma Rainey's Black Bottom The Oakland Center for the Arts presents the drama by August Wilson, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, running weekends from through Saturday, February 22nd. Ma Rainey's Black Bottom takes place at a Chicago recording studio in 1927. Ma Rainey, Mother of the Blues, will be recording her first album, but knows she will be cheated by the white producers and rails against their demands. All of this throws the producers and band members into disarray, and the ensuing conflicts lead to violence and tragedy. Performances are at 8 p.m each night. Reservations and more information about this show are available at (330) 746-0404. The Oakland Center for the Arts is located at 220 West Boardman Street in YoungstownÂ

Stage Left Players: The Music Man Stage Left Players is staging The Music Man from February 7, 8, 14, 15 and Sunday, February 9 at 2 p.m. For additional information or to reserve seats, email or call 330-831-7249. Stage Left Players is located 234 E Lincoln Way , Lisbon, Ohio Second Sundays Begins Its Second Year Season Two begins February 9th for Second Sundays at the Tyler History Center in Downtown Youngstown from 5 p.m to 8 p.m. First up is Phillip K. Jones Trio from Cleveland. There will be a buffet by Guys, special wine presentation from Valley Vino. Admission is $20, couples $35 which includes the buffet For more information log on to Tyler History Center located at 325 Federal Plaza in Downtown Youngstown.

January 31, 2014

150 Editions This newsletter has been an interesting journey starting in 2009. I didn’t think of doing 150 editions. I was thinking one at a time. My goal was to show there were lots of things to do in the Valley because I was told there was nothing to do. Sometimes, I didn’t know where to put a comma and other things in the right place. Michele Ristich Gatts was there as the newsletter’s editor to help with the commas, other things and the look of the newsletter. I am forever grateful to her. Her editing gave me confidence in my writing. I have great love for her. Monnie Ryan makes me hungry every time I read her restaurant reviews. I have read some of the books, she has reviewed in the newsletter and her blog. Monnie has been a great addition. Thanks to my good friend, Jason Sims for letting me know about ISSUU where you can publish for easy viewing. That gave the newsletter international readership. Very cool. My thanks to all of you who been nice to tell me that you read the newsletter and others who told me that they don’t read the newsletter, when it arrives. I don’t know how long A Byrd’s Eye View will last. For now, the journey continues. Thanks so much, Art Byrd

January 31, 2014

PRIVACY POLICY Some of you on A Byrd’s Eye View newsletter mailing list came to us from other e-mails sent to us regarding stories about Arts events in the area. We thought you would be interested in reading about additional Arts-related information of interest in the Mahoning and Shenango valleys, and added you. However, if you no longer wish to receive the newsletter, simply send a blank e-mail to with UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject line.

The e-mail addresses we have are NEVER shared in any way with anyone, nor are they sold. All copies of the newsletter are sent as blind carbon copies, so that no one receiving the newsletter knows the addresses of anyone else receiving it. If you have received this free newsletter as a forward and would like to subscribe, please send a blank e-mail with SUBSCRIBE in the subject line to

Excerpts from A Byrd’s Eye View can be read in The Review, Newspaper, available throughout the Valley and online at

Movie reivews from A Byrd’s Eye View can be read in The Buckeye Review Newspaper, available throughout the Valley at various newstands.

Art Byrd Jr. has won awards as a filmmaker and journalist. After working many years as a videographer and director for WFMJ TV News, he retired from broadcasting to share his experience and insight with students as an instructor at Youngstown State University. Art has written and produced numerous Indie films, which have been shown at prestigious film festivals. In addition to teaching and writing/ producing A Byrd’s Eye View newsletter, Art also does freelance media work. He is based in Youngstown, Ohio.

Monnie Ryan retired in 2003 after 14 years as managing editor of The Business Journal in Youngstown, where she continues to contribute to the print and online editions. Articles she has written have appeared in more than 20 national publications and at several travelrelated Web sites, and she has won numerous awards for photography. Contact her at

A Byrd's Eye View 150th Edition  

A newsletter about movies, TV, the Arts and what is happenin...