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PromFashion There When You Need Them West A Volunteer Fire Department

Welcome to the spring issue of West Allegheny. I hope you all had a wonderful holiday filled with family, friends, and fun. Typically, I use this space to talk about your community or features in the magazine that spotlight the people in your community who are doing wonderful things. Well, this time I want to update you regarding our newest feature for 2011— our new website. Without venturing too far into the realm of shameless self-promotion, I want to emphasize that this website is something for you, our readers. How so? Well, you can have input and help shape the website just like your ideas help shape your magazine. Now you have a place to list all of the nonprofit community organizations that are active in the community. We are also developing pages where we list the local houses of worship. In addition, we now offer every magazine in a fully downloadable PDF format, rather than the outdated flipbook format we used to have. This will allow you to send the magazine, or links to it, to friends and family both near and far. We tied our website into Facebook as well, not to get the biggest list of “friends” we could get but to have a place to keep our readers abreast of all the news we get between issues. It also gives us a place to upload all the photos from community events that we don’t have room for in the magazine. As with all things, there’s always room for improvement, but we always have open ears. If you have comments about our new website or want to see your organization listed, e-mail with your link or feedback. There’s no charge for listing your church, synagogue, or scout troop’s link, so send your links in today! And if you happen to be on Facebook and like what you see in the magazine, don’t hesitate to click that “Like” button. It’s always nice to be liked! I hope you have a wonderful spring!

SPRING 2011 IN West Allegheny is a non-partisan community publication dedicated to representing, encouraging and promoting the West Allegheny area and its comprising municipalities by focusing on the talents and gifts of the people who live and work here. Our goal is to provide readers with the most informative and professional regional publication in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. PUBLISHER



Marybeth Jeffries OFFICE MANAGER


Jamie Ward WRITERS

Jonathan Barnes Kelli McElhinny

Wayne Dollard Publisher

When I think about spring, I can’t help but think about light. The days get “lighter,” the sun stays with us a little longer each day. When we have a great idea, a light bulb goes off in our minds. At West Allegheny Magazine we try to spot-light our communities. What are you doing to be a “light”? If you or an organization that you volunteer or work for is a light in the community, will you let me know? So many good deeds are left unsung! If you have a family member who is in the armed forces, your church group or even Mom or Dad are providing a service to someone in need, we want to know! Please e-mail your ideas and photos to me at Every spring I like to highlight the good work of the local fire departments. In the case of the West Allegheny region, you are blessed to have four fire companies who are there if you need them. Please respond when the annual donation letter arrives in your mail box. In many cases, these departments rely on your generous donations to help defray the cost of their very important mission in serving the community. And, just as important, they are ALWAYS looking for new volunteers!

Pamela Palongue


Cassie Brkich Anna Buzzelli Susie Doak Pati Ingold

Jan McEvoy Joe Milne Tamara Tylenda Tracey Wasilco


Rebecca Bailey One Way Street Productions ADVERTISING SALES

Nicholas Buzzell Brian Daley Gina D’Alicandro Tina Dollard Rose Estes Jason Huffman Jessie Jones Connie McDaniel Brian McKee

David Mitchell Tamara Myers Gabriel Negri Robert Ojeda Annette Petrone Vincent Sabatini Michael Silvert RJ Vighetti

This magazine is carrier route mailed to all district households and businesses. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Copyright 2011. CORRESPONDENCE All inquiries, comments and press releases should be directed to:

Marybeth Jeffries Managing Editor

IN Community Magazines Attn: Editorial 603 East McMurray Road McMurray, PA 15317 Ph: 724.942.0940 Fax: 724.942.0968

Summer content deadline: 4/11

“No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another.” – CHARLES DICKENS

Please recycle this magazine when you are through enjoying it.

Contents West Allegheny | SPRING 2011 |




Publisher’s Message






Troop 248 Celebrates Scouting’s 100th Anniversary | 3 Pee Wee Football | West Allegheny 10U Termite Team Brings Home “Three-peat!” | 4 Volunteer Fire Departments | 6 Western Allegheny Community Library | 8 The Pittsburgh Airport Area Chamber of Commerce | 10 Real Estate in West Allegheny | Both Buyers and Sellers Need to Beware of Overpricing | 12 Reeducation of the Seller | 13 West Allegheny Athletes Commit For Collegiate Sports | 14 UPMC Today | Health and Wellness News You Can Use | 21 West Allegheny Spelling Bee | 29 IN Kids | 30 Houses of Worship | 33 Older Adults in West Allegheny | 34 Municipal Information | 38 West Allegheny Kid Raises Money for Animal Shelter | 40 Lions Imperial – Never Turn A Blind Eye | 42



Home Improvement Rethinking the Attic | 15


Female Fit-It-Yourself Revolution | 16 Fireplace Creates Warmth & The Perfect Décor | 17

Hair Peace Charities | 19 | 20 Relay For Life The Healing Powers of Nutrition | 32 Some Springtime Gardening Tips | 41 Proms and Weddings | Wedding Reception to Remember | 45 Cover Story: Prom Fashion Tips for 2011 | 46 Venue Planning for Your Wedding | 48 Wedding Etiquette for the Socially Inept | 49 ON THE COVER

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West Allegheny Students Alyssa Williamson and Amber Williamson dress for the Prom! Photos taken at Reflect Dresses by Tony Bowls.

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   The first scouting troop was formed and chartered for the town of Oakdale on July 24, 1923, just 13 years after scouting was founded in the United States of America.

For 365 days, Boy Scout Troop 248 of Oakdale has been celebrating a century of scouting in the United States. And, this February, that celebration will culminate in an alumni recognition and celebration that will honor members of the troop’s own 75-year history. Scoutmaster Thomas Taylor, said that in 75 years, 74 scouts of Oakdale Troop 248 have received their Eagle badges, reflecting the active and vibrant nature of scouting in the community. “We mailed out more than 250 invitations to older scouts and alumni for the February celebration. Oakdale Borough sent out notices in the water bills,” Taylor said. “It’s open to the public. People are encouraged to bring family and friends and get to see the 100 years of scouting, see our troop history, and catch up with old friends.” February is appropriately chosen because it happens to also be Scout Month. The alumni celebration will be held on Feb. 12. In March, the troop will recognize seven members who are members of the Eagle Court, or those who will be receiving their Eagle Scout designations. Taylor said that his history with the troop goes back to when he was 11 years old. “This is the troop I grew up in as a kid. I joined, became

assistant scoutmaster when I turned 18, and became scoutmaster when I turned 21,” he said. “In all, I’ve been with it for more than 25 years, serving as committee chair with the unit for 10 of those years.” Troop 248 has 31 active members on its roster, and Taylor credits the activity of the troop as being one of the reasons why so many are involved. In addition to their community service and education projects, the troop goes to Cimarron, New Mexico, every four years, and has a spring and fall camp every year. “Our guys are pretty active,” Taylor said, adding that school sports and activities haven’t drawn members away from his troop as they have in other districts. “Sports are part of scouting too. I’m very well aware of that, and I make it clear to my kids and their parents. I want them involved with the sports and the band at school. Scouting is part of that. If they can make half the meetings, they make half the meetings. I’d rather them miss half the meeting than not be there at all.” In the end, Taylor said that it’s the intellectual aspect of scouting that keeps the scouts involved, and how scouting helps them grow as leaders and productive members of society. “There’s an enjoyment among scoutmasters of watching young kids develop into leaders,” he said. “It’s amazing when you see one of the 11-year-olds come in, and they’re not sure what they’re doing, and then they turn into junior leaders at 17 and 18, and are running the unit. It’s like when you see a light bulb going off above someone’s head in the cartoons. It’s actually fun watching that happen, when a kid realizes what’s going on.” For more information on Troop 248, go to

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 BRINGS HOME “THREE-PEAT!”

When it comes to football, rivalries start early in West Allegheny. For the 10U Termite team, their biggest adversary for the past several years has been Montour. And for the third year in a row, West Allegheny defeated Montour to win the South Suburban Football League Super Bowl, 12-6.

Coach Rocky McGeary said the team’s winning seasons are due to the inspiration and dedication of the team members, who show exemplary on- and off-field camaraderie. “As a coach, it’s amazing to me what a team can do when the kids believe in themselves. Winning breeds winning,” he said. “They taught me a lot more about adversity, never giving up, knowing that there’s always a chance. I could spend hours saying what an amazing group of kids they are.” The West Allegheny Termites only lost two games, both to Montour, which is quite a record over the past three years. This year’s win over Montour ended in double overtime with a touchdown pass. Overtime in youth league is played from the 10-yard line. While winning and dynasties are a plus, McGeary said that his emphasis to the team is on sportsmanship and character. “There are no superstars on our team. I’m the only coach. We don’t keep stats. We’ve never done it, and I don’t believe in it,” McGeary said. “Football is a team sport, and that’s something this team fully understands. There are players on the team who exhibit a lot of talent, but they don’t act like it it’s their own personal effort that wins the game. They don’t think that way; it’s not in their thought process; it’s a team

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West Allegheny

sport. They’re all in it together, and it shows. They’re functioning as a unit. As a coach that’s the one thing I’m the most proud of.” Over the years, West Allegheny has lost some players and gained some players, but the overall team has been one cohesive unit since the 8U level. Their growth, and the growth of their rivalry with Montour, is something that has been a staple of their success. McGeary said the team’s record over the past three years has been 28-2, both losses attributed to Montour, and one of those losses was the first year they played Montour. “The first year, they crushed us,” McGeary said. “But every single year we played them for the championship.” This year will be the team’s final year in youth play before they move on, and McGeary anticipates great things to come. “Our motto for the year was ‘It’s hard to beat someone when they never give up.’ If you knock us down a 100 times, we’ll get up 101,” he said. “Watching these kids play and grow has been just amazing. At my banquet, I didn’t want to be their coach, I wanted to be one of them, because they just have so much character and love for the game. Other than the birth of my children, having been a part of their success and their growth as a team has been one of the best parts of my life.”

West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 5


Volunteer Fire

(For emergencies, always dial 9-1-1.) Imperial Volunteer Fire Department and Auxiliary 115 Main Street Imperial, PA 15126 724.695.8845 North Fayette Volunteer Fire Department and Auxiliary 7678 Steubenville Pike Oakdale, PA 15071 412.861.3004 Oakdale Hose Company 6111 Noblestown Road Oakdale, PA 15071 724.693.9408 Sturgeon Volunteer Fire Department P.O. Box 317, 526 Main Street Sturgeon, PA 15082 724.926.9149

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Departments Firefighters are people that you never want to call. But you sure are glad they’re there when you do. And in West Allegheny, residents have their choice of four established fire departments serving the community. All volunteers, but 100-percent professional, the men and women who serve the West Allegheny area strive to keep residents safe before and after a fire occurs. The oldest volunteer fire company serving the West Allegheny area by far is Oakdale Hose Company, which was chartered in June of 1893. By that November the company had a hose cart that it purchased for $85. It wasn’t until 1923 that the Oakdale Hose Company would purchase its first real fire truck for $2,500. Today, the Oakdale Hose Company has substantially more equipment and is prepared for nearly any emergency. Imperial Volunteer Fire Department and Auxiliary is located at 115 Main Street in Imperial and operates four engines, two brush trucks, a rescue truck, a squad truck, and a chief ’s car. Originally founded in 1924 as the Montour Valley Fire Department, it changed its name to the current moniker 12 years later. The booming growth in Findlay Township and surrounding areas keeps the department on its toes in trying to keep the most updated equipment that it can. That equipment is supplemented by a strong regimen of firefighting education for members.

West Allegheny

Substations for the department are located on Matchette Road and Aten Road, with nearly 50 members working out of the two. North Fayette Volunteer Fire Department has a much more recent history, dating back to 1970, when residents met to discuss the results of a recent survey on fire protection. By 1971, the department was issued a charter and bought one used fire truck to repair, paint, and put into service. Momentum in the department was building, and by 1973, North Fayette Volunteer Fire Department purchased a new hose, ladder, tank, and pumper truck for $32,000. Today, the department has seven vehicles in service, ranging from pumpers to off-road vehicles. Despite the steady and guided growth of the North Fayette Volunteer Fire Department, strong community support is always needed to maintain a vibrant fire department. And, like all departments listed here, they need volunteers and donations either directly or through their annual fundraising events and campaigns. Sturgeon Volunteer Fire/Rescue serves portions of North Fayette and South Fayette. Located at 526 Main Street, Sturgeon not only has a modern station but the equipment to fill it as well. With a 1999 Pierce engine, a 2001 rescue engine, a light rescue vehicle, a squad vehicle, and a mobile air trailer, Sturgeon Volunteer Fire/Rescue is ready, willing, and able to assist in an emergency situation. While up-to-date equipment is a must for all fire departments, volunteers willing to serve their community are even more important. All of your local fire departments welcome volunteers. The work is strenuous, but certifications can be obtained by even the busiest individuals. Each department has different requirements for members once they pass their training, but being able to save someone’s life and the lives of their family is a volunteer position that comes with its own indescribable rewards.

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West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 7



Mon: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tue: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Wed: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thu: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Fri: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sat: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sun: CLOSED

8042 Steubenville Pike Oakdale, PA 15071 Phone: 724.695.8150 Fax: 724.695.2860

W.A.F.E.L - Western Area Friends to Enhance the Library We are pleased to welcome Lin and Ed Nalesnick as our new President and Vice-President.

About W.A.F.E.L W.A.F.E.L., the library’s “Friends group” has helped to build and support the library since 1989. The Friends have a common concern for the library‘s active participation in the community.

How does W.A.F.E.L help?

VITA Appointments VITA appointments are being taken to fill out PA State and Federal Tax forms and PA 1000 Rent and Homeowners property tax rebates. To schedule your appointment stop at circulation desk or call 724.695.8150. This program is for senior citizens and low income residents only.


NO WALK INS – You must make an appointment.

Just for Kids Story Times

10:30 - 10:55 a.m.

TODDLER TALES Toddler Tales is a 45-minute storytime designed for children from 2-3 1/2 years old and their parent or caregiver. Children will enjoy fingerplays, stories, crafts and fun! Mondays

11:30 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.

New members are always welcome Membership privilege includes early entry to the Used Book Sales Meetings are held at the library on the second Monday of each month @ 7 p.m. Individual Membership $3.00 Family Membership $5.00

Events & Activities

(all programs require registration)

Pre-K Kapers is an hour long program designed to help preschoolers become better prepared to face the challenges and excitement of Kindergarten. 1:30 - 2:30 p.m.

Bodies In Motion Preschoolers ages 2 and up are invited to join us as we wiggle, giggle, move and groove! We’ll have stories, music, dancing... even parachuting! So put on your dancing shoes and head to the library for some super silly fun!!! Thursdays 1:30 - 2:15p.m. Check the Event Calendar for exact dates.

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CRAFT-ASTIC! Kids of all ages (little ones with a parent) are invited to drop in for a crazy, crafty creation! Glitter, glue...and lots to do! Don’t put on your Sunday best, because we’re sure to make a mess! Wednesday, March 24 6:45 - 7:45 p.m. Register online or at the library’s Circulation Desk.




W.A.F.E.L Membership


Book Babies is a 30-minute program designed for children from 6-24 months and their parent and caregiver. Fingerplays, songs, books and rhymes will help these children take their first steps towards a love of reading that will last a lifetime!


Supports the library through fundraising to augment the library‘s budget Provides cash prizes for poetry contest Provides funding for summer reading programs Contributes money and manpower for programs throughout the year

West Allegheny

Get all dolled up and head to the library to help us celebrate the birthday of everyone’s favorite blonde...Barbie! Bring your dolls along to join in the fun! Stories, crafts, and much, much more! Wednesday, March 31 6:45 -7:45 p.m. Register online or at the library’s Circulation Desk.

West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 9

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West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 11


West Allegheny

“You have to make sure that your agent But there’s no similar failsafe with overAs with any major purchase, doing your does comparisons to similar homes in the pricing. A home that’s overpriced may get a homework should be something you do bearea, knows the market, and gets supporting nice offer, but ultimately, the final arbiter of fore you sign on a major loan. Never before evidence that the house is really worth what it’s truly worth is the appraiser, assigned has this been more true than in the housing what it’s being advertised at before you independently by the bank or lender. That market, where overpricing can create major put in an offer,” Fincham said. “If the house appraisal will dictate the future of the sale. headaches for buyers and sellers. doesn’t appraise for the agreed upon price, The resulting appraisal could tank the sale For sellers, overpricing can mean that your it is unlikely that you will receive any altogether, or force buyers to seek extra home sits on the market longer, raising flags seller’s assist.” money or alternative financing to to potential buyers that something is amiss. compensate for the missed seller’s For buyers, an overpriced home can assistance. Either way, it’s going to mean a loss in seller’s For buyers, an overpriced home can mean a loss mean a hassle for the buyer and assistance, money that sellers in seller’s assistance, money that sellers frustration for the seller. sometimes bring to the table from sometimes bring to the table from their profits However, if an agent does the their profits to help defray closing homework and knows their business, costs for the buyer. Worse yet, if to help defray closing costs for the buyer. Fincham said the home should be there is no appraisal contingency listed at a fair price, resulting in a addendum attached to the relatively smooth sale in reasonable agreement of sale, a buyer may be length of time. forced to go through with a home “It is now imperative that agents and purchase after being told that it is not worth clients know the recent selling prices of what they have agreed to pay. What’s more, overpricing is a one-way Sharon Fincham, a Realtor with street by way of mistakes. Homeowners who comparable homes,” she said. “Buyers and sellers agreeing on a price is not Prudential Preferred Realty, said that, list their homes for too little may receive necessarily enough anymore. The study in addition to including an appraisal multiple offers, allowing the power of free of a neighborhood before an offer is made contingency addendum to an offer, you market economic supply and demand can save everyone involved a lot of grief need to make sure that your agent is to take over, driving the price up until and frustration.” doing the proper legwork before the it’s comparable to the other homes in offer is even made. the neighborhood.

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Maureen Cavanaugh, with Howard Hanna Real Estate, said that sellers need to re-educate themselves if they want to remain competitive in today’s market and make a profit on their homes. “Selling your home is very different today, and it’s been a progressive thing,” Cavanaugh said. “Ten years ago, you could list your home as is. Buyers were willing to come in and do updates. With the changes that occurred in the last three and four years, the expectation of buyers has dramatically risen. Many sellers who have lived in their homes for years with a lot of equity should consider doing as many updates as they are willing to do.” Those updates will reap more money when it comes to their final sale price, Cavanaugh said. No updates will result in a lesser price. “It really depends on the house. I’m dealing with someone right now that has a nice home of 32 years, and they’ve spent three months and have done everything. They’re spending upwards of $25,000, but it will take their sale price from the $380,000 range to $425,000 or $430,000. They will recoup what they put into it,” Cavanaugh said. “And the reason is that today’s buyers want to move in, put down the furniture, start paying the mortgage, and get on with their lives.

West Allegheny

They don’t want to be bogged down with the projects and upgrades like taking down old wallpaper.” If you don’t have a budget for upgrades, Cavanaugh said that even minor cosmetic changes can improve your odds of getting more for your home when it comes time to sell. These types of upgrades include updating the hardware on cabinets to more contemporary styles. At the very least, Cavanaugh suggests getting rid of any junk, cleaning thoroughly, and doing some rudimentary staging. “Exposing hardwood floors is a no-brainer. You don’t have to paint the whole house beige. You can still have some color and have some interest,” she said. “But everything should be sparkling.” Cavanaugh said that now that the first-time homebuyer frenzies spurred by government tax rebates are over, the bulk of homebuyers are mid-level buyers looking in the $150,000 to $300,000 range with access to affordable mortgage money. “These are relocation buyers, and they want all the bells and whistles,” she said. “They want to buy more, and they want it done.”



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 The West Allegheny Athletic Department hosted a National Letter of Intent/College Commitment Day ceremony on Wednesday, February 2, 2011, at the high school for five senior athletes awarded athletic scholarships beginning with the 2011 fall season.

Pictured are the five West Allegheny athletes (sitting) CJ Revtai, Carissa Miara, Mike Caputo, Chelsea Burdzy, and Brandon Krszal; and (standing) who formalized their commitments for collegiate sports at the February 2 National Letter of Intent/College Commitment Day ceremony. Standing behind them are Jim Hamilton (Cross country/Track coach), Tim Veach (Hockey coach), Chris Shattuck (High School Assistant Principal), Dan Smith (High School Principal), Kevin McKiernan (High School Assistant Principal), Dave McBain (Athletic Director), Dr. John S. DiSanti (Superintendent), and Bob Palko (Football coach).

Mike Caputo committed to the University of Wisconsin to play football, CJ Revtai to California University of Pennsylvania for football, and Brandon Krszal to Duquesne University for cross country/track. Carissa Miara has already accepted an offer from Indiana University of Pennsylvania for women’s volleyball, and Chelsea Burdzy has agreed to play women’s ice hockey at Robert Morris University. The athletes’ parents attended the ceremony along with school officials and coaches.

Pictured are the five West Allegheny High School athletes who participated in the February 2 National Letter of Intent/College Commitment Day ceremony (sitting): CJ Revtai, Carissa Miara, Mike Caputo, Chelsea Burdzy, and Brandon Krszal; and their parents, respectively, (standing): Renee and Todd Revtai, Arlette and Michael Miara, Cindy and Richard Caputo, Michelle and Bob Burdzy, and Christine Krszal. Pictured are the five West Allegheny High School athletes who participated in the February 2 National Letter of Intent/College Commitment Day ceremony: CJ Revtai, Carissa Miara, Mike Caputo, Chelsea Burdzy, and Brandon Krszal. 14 724.942.0940 to advertise |

West Allegheny

f you’re more than four feet tall and live in western Pennsylvania, chances are that your attic is not a comfortable space that you would consider livable. Your attic can be modified, however, by the do-ityourselfer into more than adequate storage for a variety of your belongings, if you get creative.

The first thing you need to consider is the space itself. Is it finished at all? Many attics in the area are open spaces broken up by roof and flooring joists and wads of insulation. The first thing you want to do is inspect your attic for leaks and whether those joists are strong enough to support extra weight. You can add flooring by screwing down plywood or other subflooring. Avoid nailing materials down to prevent damaging the ceilings underneath you through the vibrations of hammer blows. Once you have your flooring down, you can decide whether or not you want to finish the ceiling joists. You can insulate and attach drywall or plywood to these joists, depending on how fancy you want to get with the finished look; or you may decide that having the recessed areas between the joists is beneficial to your storage needs. Keep in mind that a triangular space is limiting only if you have boxes or items that you need to store vertically. Items that are smaller and that can be arranged into nooks and crannies can be ideal for these odd-shaped spaces. Also keep in mind that, because of the nature of attic access in older homes, the route to your attic may be through a small trap door in a hall closet, so items you put in the attic might be limited to long-term or permanent storage, like old college textbooks, holiday decorations, luggage, or all those old National Geographics that you can’t throw away because the pictures are too pretty. If you do have easy access to your attic, either by way of a dedicated staircase or pull-down steps, more options may offer themselves to you. Even tight attics have enough room for several two-drawer filing cabinets, allowing you to store many years’ worth of tax returns or product manuals.

Easier access means even more versatility when it comes to your storage plan. Rather than long term, you can use the space for things that require infrequent use—bins for extra blankets and pillows for when guests are in town, large children’s toys or games that don’t get played with during the school week, and sporting equipment when it’s out of season. Storing items like these in the attic will keep them out of dank basement conditions, and, in the case of linens and sporting equipment, keep the smell of mildew away.

Keep in mind that the attic, while dryer than the basement, still has its own set of issues. Temperatures often vary wildly in attics depending on how insulated they are, so items that can’t stand high heat or low temperatures – like candles, for instance – may not fare well in the attic environment. Each space is different, but each is unique, and how you use that space can be a fun project for the whole family.

West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 15





From pink screwdrivers and mini toolboxes to a surge of female-targeted home improvement sites and guidebooks, the fix-it-yourself revolution has come for women in the U.S. More empowered females are taking on household problems themselves instead of spending the money to hire a plumber, electrician or contractor. In fact, a recent study by the Medelia Monitor showed that more than 60 percent of women are more likely to tackle the work on their own. The majority of these women (63 percent) are being more resourceful to avoid the high costs of hiring a professional. And 71 percent of women say the desire to “fix-it-myself” stems from the empowering feeling of having the knowledge to improve their home. Sound familiar? If you’d like to empower yourself and join the fix-it-yourself revolution, start by picking up a few affordable tools and products to tackle quick fixes. Here are easy tips for solving five common household problems: Unstick sticky windows by opening them and rubbing wax or spraying silicone into the tracks on both sides. Move the window up and down several times to work the wax or silicone lubricant into the frame. Fix squeaky wood or tile floors by sprinkling baby powder on the surface of the floor that’s squeaking. Then place a chisel between the boards and gently hammer the top to pry up the tile or floorboard. Sprinkle more baby powder underneath the board to seal the excess space causing the squeaking. If your drains are draining slowly or clogged completely, try a de-clogging gel that clears the toughest clogs at a fraction of the cost of a plumber house call. Liquid-Plumr’s new Penetrex Gel is a fast-acting, powerful formula that can clear the toughest clogs in just seven minutes. Mend unsightly holes or tears in your window screens by using a screwdriver to straighten the bends in the mesh and dabbing clear nail polish to seal the hole. Allow it to dry. Then repeat the polish application until the hole is completely sealed. A wobbly table leg may seem hard, but it’s a surprisingly easy repair. Just figure out how it’s attached to the seat. Then either screw the leg back into its socket or glue it back into place.

✔ ✔

✔ ✔ ✔

 Fix-it resources abound online and at your local bookstore. But here’s a few to get you started: Most clogged drains are caused by hair. Get tips on how to keep all drains clear and while you’re there, enter the Big Locks Rock! Contest before December 15 for a chance to win a trip for four to L.A. to get haircuts by a celebrity stylist. A site where women of all ages and skill levels can find answers to home improvement questions and connect with others for inspiration and advice. “Dare to Repair” by Julie Sussman: This book offers a “do-it-herself” guide to fixing almost anything in the home. 16 724.942.0940 to advertise |

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West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 17

“ Since advertising, I have received a lot of recognition and sales based on my ads with IN Community Magazines.” - Lisa Giaccino / Coldwell Banker

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West Allegheny

“ Your magazine is hands-down the best advertising tool if you want to reach Murrysville! The residents and the business community are behind you 100%.” - John Cardwell / Murrysville Economic and Community Development Corporation

In May 2003, Bonny Diver-Hall was at the height of her radio career at 3WS and enjoying riding her beloved horse, Romeo. Unfortunately, a bad fall left her with a broken shoulder, but it was that fall that saved her life. Bonny discovered a lump in her breast while examining her wounds. That lump turned out to be breast cancer, which became an opportunity for victory.

of treatment and how to fight cancer with changes in diet and lifestyle. At monthly meetings (Empowerment Circles) expert speakers educate women on a variety of topics related to health and spirituality. Volunteers have gone to women's homes to plant flower bulbs, made prayer quilts, and sent prayer cards. Women struggling with cancer should contact Hair Peace Charities at 412.327.5177 or

Today, almost eight years later, Bonny is cancer-free and on a mission to bring dignity and comfort to women undergoing chemotherapy.

Bonny Diver-Hall is available to speak to groups about the spiritual and practical aspects of fighting cancer. She says she is more than a survivor—she is a warrior!

Hair Peace Charities was born after Bonny’s oncologist mentioned that four out of five Pennsylvania health insurance companies wouldn’t cover the cost of a wig (around $300) for women who would lose their hair during chemotherapy. “It is imperative to give women the means to maintain their dignity while taking on the fight of their lives,” says Bonny. “It is not just a wig; it is the circle of support that Hair Peace Charities offers along their way.” Bonny received immense help to launch Hair Peace Charities from Ingomar Methodist Church, which remains a steady lifeline to the organization that today is independent. Hair Peace provides women in the 412 and 724 area codes with financial assistance to purchase a wig needed from chemotherapy. Donations come from generous individuals, businesses, and organizations. Many donors have been personally affected by cancer. Last year, Hair Peace served nearly 175 women and expects to double that number in 2011, bringing the outreach to over 800 since inception. In addition to helping pay for wigs, Hair Peace Charities provides a helpful informational packet with ways to deal with the effects

West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 19

The American Cancer Society Invites You to Help Create a World Full of More Birthdays Through

 Western Pennsylvania – The American Cancer Society Relay For Life is a life-changing event that gives everyone in communities across the globe a chance to celebrate the lives of people who have battled cancer, remember loved ones lost, and fight back against the disease. Relay For Life events are held overnight as individuals and teams camp out at an athletic track, park, or other gathering area, with the goal of keeping at least one team member on the track or pathway at all times throughout the evening. Teams do most of their fundraising prior to the event, but some teams also hold creative fundraisers at their campsites during relay. Relay brings together friends, families, businesses, hospitals, schools, faith-based groups…people from all walks of life— all aimed at furthering the American Cancer Society’s efforts to save lives by helping people stay well, by helping them get well, by finding cures, and by fighting back. Relay is a unique opportunity for communities to come together to celebrate people who have battled cancer, remember those we’ve lost, and fight back against the disease. Many of the participants are cancer survivors, serving as a reminder that no one is immune to this disease. By participating in Relay, you join the American Cancer Society’s efforts to create a world with less cancer and more birthdays. Funds raised through Relay For Life enable the American Cancer Society to impact the lives of those touched by cancer within the community. The American Cancer Society is currently funding 58 cancer research projects to the tune of nearly $37.4 million throughout Pennsylvania in 2011, including current projects taking place in western Pennsylvania at the

Relay For Life Events in Your Area Site City



Moon Township






Bethel Park










Natrona Heights








Mount Lebanon






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West Allegheny

University of Pittsburgh, Carnegie-Mellon University, and Robert Morris University. Funds raised through Relay also enable the American Cancer Society to provide programs and services to cancer patients and their families in communities across the state. In 2010, more than 25,000 services were provided to cancer patients across Pennsylvania. Access to American Cancer Society programs and services are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week by calling 1.800.227.2345 or visiting In 2010, Relay For Life raised nearly $6 million at 62 Relay sites throughout western Pennsylvania. Nationwide, more than 3.5 million people participated in Relay For Life, with more than 500,000 cancer survivors participating. All in all, Relay For Life events held throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania raised nearly $20 million in 2010. For more information about the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life or to find out how you may get involved, call the American Cancer Society at 1.800.227.2345 or visit The American Cancer Society combines an unyielding passion with nearly a century of experience to save lives and end suffering from cancer. As a global grassroots force of more than three million volunteers, we fight for every birthday threatened by every cancer in every community. We save lives by helping people stay well by preventing cancer or detecting it early; by helping people get well by being there for them during and after a cancer diagnosis; by finding cures through investment in groundbreaking discovery; and by fighting back by rallying lawmakers to pass laws to defeat cancer and by rallying communities worldwide to join the fight. As the nation’s largest non-governmental investor in cancer research, contributing about $3.4 billion, we turn what we know about cancer into what we do. As a result, more than 11 million people in America who have had cancer and countless more who have avoided it will be celebrating birthdays this year. To learn more about us or to get help, call us anytime, day or night, at 1.800.227.2345 or visit


SPELLING BEE WINNER Advances To Regional Competition

West Allegheny Middle School sixth grade student Maxwell Bruce-Rudge took first place in the school’s Spelling Bee on February 9, 2011. As the school winner, Maxwell will represent West Allegheny Middle School at the Western Pennsylvania Spelling Bee on March 19, 2011, which will be held at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh, UPMC.

West Allegheny Middle School Spelling Bee winners were McKenzie Johnsen, runner up and Maxwell Bruce-Rudge, first place.

Eighth grader McKenzie Johnsen was the runner up. All middle school students took a spelling test in their English classes to qualify for the spelling bee. Middle school language arts teacher Anita Miller coordinated the event.

  

   EVERYONE HAS A STORY Would you or someone you know like to be featured IN West Allegheny Magazine for our newest feature – Resident Profiles? Please suggest a resident for the community to get to know! E-mail our Managing Editor at

(Must be a resident of the West Allegheny community)

West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 29

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West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 31

Allegheny West Christian Church 7600 Steubenville Pike, Oakdale, PA 15071 412.788.4988 Church of Jesus Christ 57 Moore Road, Imperial, PA 15126 724.899.3935 Church of the Living Christ 220 West Allegheny Road, Imperial, Pa 15126 724.695.7188 Church of the Nazarene 507 Route 30, Imperial, PA 15126 724.695.7669 Clinton UP Church 25 Wilson Road, Clinton, PA 15026 724.695.7993 Clinton Wesleyan Church 1022 Clinton Road, Clinton, PA 15026 724.695.7076 Crossroads Methodist Church 1000 Crossroads Drive, Oakdale, PA 15071 412.494.9999 Hebron Presbyterian Church 1767 Route 30, Clinton, PA 15026 724.899.2276

Reach over 22,464 potential customers in West Allegheny

Noblestown United Methodist Church 7313 Noblestown Road, Oakdale, PA 15071 724.693.2755 Oakdale United Presbyterian Church 62 Hastings Avenue, Oakdale, Pa 15071 724.693.8950 Resurrection Lutheran Church 7600 Steubenville Pike, Oakdale, Pa 15071 412.788.4513 St. Columbkille Church 103 Church Road, Imperial, PA 15126 724.695.7325 West Ridge Christian Church 100 Gorwood Drive, Coraopolis, PA 15108 724.695.7500

West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 33

Good Tidings for the Greatest Generation

Older Adults inWest Allegheny 

         

ow that the holidays are behind us, you’re hopefully putting that smoking credit card back into your wallet or purse for a while. But even though this may be a down time for you and your credit card, it’s no time to be lax about your credit card security. So what do you need to know about keeping your credit card safe? First, off, don’t give yourself a pin number that’s easy to guess. Issuing banks typically assign you a random pin number when you first get your card that you can change later. Keep this assigned number and avoid picking a pin for yourself like “1234” or your birth date. While it may be easy for you to remember, those choices are also very easy for predators to figure out. If you make a lot of online purchases or just want to dip your toes into the world of Internet shopping, get yourself a dedicated card with a low credit limit. You can open up a secured credit card at most financial institutions that require you to deposit a balance to borrow against, allowing you to open a card with a $500 limit. Your deposit will gain interest and you will be able to use your card for online purchases. What’s more, most scammers try to run a small purchase through before running a larger purchase on 34 724.942.0940 to advertise |

the card. You may not notice a $0.32 charge right away, but when your bank calls you asking if you tried to purchase a $779 laptop, you’ll be happy your limit was low enough to be declined. If your credit card number is compromised, you should call your bank immediately and report it. While police are able to enforce credit card fraud on a local level, with the Internet the person trying to run your numbers may be six states away, if they’re in the United States at all. In all cases, the sooner it’s reported, the better. Your bank will cancel the card number and reissue you another card. While you’re online, keep in mind that your bank will most likely never contact you via email regarding your account. If you do get an e-mail from a bank that you use, double check the address. Chances are it will be slightly askew from any legitimate address. Instead of “,”

West Allegheny

you may see, “” or “” Banks understand that scammers routinely try to get you to give up your personal information via e-mail. Therefore, most have secured e-mail available through their websites, where you can be sure you’re talking straight to legitimate bank representatives. Lastly, if you have several credit cards that you use often, take the time to flip them over and write down the 1-800 customer service numbers on the back and keep that list in a safe place. It’s also a good idea to keep a copy in your purse or wallet. This way, when you notice your card is missing and are frantic, you can at least go to your list and call to report the missing card. In the end, you should treat your credit card like you would treat your cash—never leave it lying around.

 

f the last time you took holiday photos required clumsily spooling film into your 35 mm camera, don’t be intimidated by what technology has done to photography in the past few years. In fact, once you have some basics down, you may find that your digital camera is easier to use than you thought. So let’s start at the beginning and go over your new toy from stem to stern. We can’t go into detail about every feature of every camera, but luckily most cameras share the same properties, so we can cover most scenarios. More than likely, your camera came with a lithium ion battery pack and charger. All you need to know about this is that this battery can last a long time. Thanks to self-timers built into your camera, if you forget to shut it off, it will shut off automatically for you, saving battery life and allowing you to take that unexpected shot when the time comes. That said, the battery won’t last forever, especially if you are shooting with the flash often or shooting video, if your camera has that feature. If you know you’re going to be somewhere with a lot of natural light, turn your flash off altogether and shoot longer. The second thing to familiarize yourself with is your memory card. Cameras come with a variety of memory cards to choose from. Regardless of the kind your camera takes, just remember that bigger is better. A 16 gigabyte memory card can hold hundreds of photos, and if you’re not in the habit of printing your photos right away or moving them to your computer, the extra space is a must. How many pictures you can store on your memory card depends on your resolution setting for your pictures. Your resolution is how big the picture is. If you’re shooting for a website, low resolutions are better because the file size is smaller. However, if you try to print the same low resolution photo as an 8x10, it will appear distorted or “pixilated” because the camera wasn’t set to capture all of the fine details of the image. With most point-and-shoot cameras on high resolution, you can print very large prints or zoom in to crop shots for better composition. The last thing to get to know is the USB cable. This is the cable that came with your camera and connects it to any USB port on your computer. Through this cable, you can transfer your images for future sorting, correction, or sharing. Believe it or not, once you have those things down, your digital camera has many of the same features of your old 35 mm. You can zoom in, set a timer so you have a chance to get into frame, and set a scenic mode where you can select how the camera operates in certain conditions, such as a portrait, sports shot, night shot, or landscape. Your manual will list the specific icons and their meanings. Don’t be afraid to leaf through it if you get stuck. Manuals have come a long way as well and are clearly written for users of all experience levels.

SeniorAgencies Oakdale Senior Resource Center of LifeSpan 104 Seminary Road Oakdale, PA 15071 Phone: 724.693.8540 Fax: 724.693.2780

Hours of Operation: 9:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. M–F Site Coordinator: Paul Belak email:

Transportation For Older Adults There are several agencies that offer free or reduced-rate transportation services to individuals who qualify: Medical Assistance Transportation Program (MATP) 1.888.547.6287 Provides non-emergency medical transportation to residents of Allegheny County who have a valid Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare Medical Assistance Card. Free Bus Pass for Senior Citizens The Port Authority allows Allegheny County residents, 65 years of age and older, to ride free on local public transportation (buses, trolleys and rapid-transit lines). Participants must obtain identification cards, which are available free of charge, from participating transportation providers. Call 412.442.2000 for the location nearest to you. Older Persons Transportation Transportation for medical appointments, grocery shopping, senior center activities and other needs throughout Allegheny County is available to adults 60 years of age and older who live in Allegheny County. Call SeniorLine at 412.350.5460. ACCESS 65 Plus and ACCESS ADA Program 412.562.5353 or TDD 1.800.654.5984 ACCESS is doorto-door, advance reservation, sharedride transportation provided throughout Port Authority’s service area. It serves primarily senior citizens and persons with disabilities. There are no restrictions on the purpose or number of trips which may be taken by riders, except that riders are required to share their vehicle with others traveling in the same direction and at the same time. Are you a nonprofit Senior Center serving the needs of our community’s older adults? We would be happy to post your contact information. Contact with your center’s name and phone number. West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 35

Older Adults in West Allegheny   The Allegheny County Area Agency on Aging’s Dom Care Program has been in existence for over 30 years providing foster care homes to adults, age 18 years or older who are not able to live alone. Dom Care has enabled many people to live a comfortable life in safe and nurturing surroundings. Through Dom Care, individuals are matched with families who offer a home and assistance with daily activities, as well as support and companionship. The Dom Care Program is particularly helpful to seniors and people with intellectual disabilities who might benefit from the care and supervision of a family home. By opening their homes, Dom Care Providers enable these individuals to remain within the community in a home-like setting. Providers are only permitted to care for up to three residents. Dom Care providers assist with activities such as personal hygiene, grooming and medication management. They also provide three nutritious provide meals a day along with housekeeping and laundry services. To become a Dom Care provider an approval and certification process must be completed. It includes home inspections by both a care manager and the Allegheny County Health Department. Providers are also required to have certification in First Aid and CPR. Additionally, they must present personal and financial references, submit to a police record search and obtain a medical clearance from a physician. Care managers will assist with this process. Anyone interested in becoming a resident in a Dom Care home can inquire on their own or can be referred by someone else, including family members, health care professionals or agencies that serve people with disabilities. In return for the room, board and personalized care they receive, Dom Care residents pay a set monthly fee. Those with limited income and resources may be eligible for a financial supplement to assist with the payment and to assure that they have personal spending money. The benefits of being a Dom Care provider include companionship, support from professional staff, and a monthly payment for the services they give. Most importantly, it is the feeling of satisfaction and fulfillment for sharing a warm and caring home. To learn more about the Dom Care Program, to make a referral for an individual or to find out how to become a provider, call the Allegheny County Department of Human Services, Area Agency on Aging Dom Care Program at 412.350.5105 or visit: 36 724.942.0940 to advertise |

West Allegheny

Findlay Township

1271 Route 30 P.O. Box W Clinton, PA 15026 Phone: 724.695.0500 Fax: 724.695.1700

Administration Township Manager Gary Klingman 724.695.0500 x244

Asst. Township Manager/Planning Administrator

Building Inspector

Planning Commission

Russ Collins 724.695.0500 x250

Information Meeting - 1st Monday each month, 7 p.m.

Wage/LST Tax Collector Barbara Coates 724.695.0521 Dorothy McCullough 724.695.2995

Public Works Director John O’Neal 724.695.2801

Municipal Authority Manager Jason Orsini 724.695.3108

District Magistrate Anthony Saveikis 724.695.2070

Township Secretary/Treasurer


Admin. Asst/Planning Secretary Cynde Harris 724.695.0500 x247

Findlay Township Municipal (Water) Authority 724.695.3108

3rd Monday each month, 7 p.m.

Trash & Recycling - Waste Management 800.866.4460

Public Safety


Findlay Township Police Department

Western Allegheny Community Library

Zoning Hearing Board

Real Estate Tax Collector

Christopher Caruso 724.695.0500 x248 Cheryl Rinehart 724.695.0500 x242

Regular Meeting - 4th Tuesday each month, 7 p.m.


Board of Supervisors Caucus Meeting - 1st Thursday each month, 7 p.m. Regular Meeting - 2nd Wednesday each month, 7 p.m. Workshop Meeting - 4th Thursday each month, 7 p.m.

1271 Route #30, Clinton, Pennsylvania 15026 Emergency Number: 724 695.7777 OR 911 Non-Emergency Number: 724.695.1300

Imperial Volunteer Fire Department 115 Main Street Imperial, PA 15126 Emergency Number: 724 695.7777 or 911 Non-Emergency Number: 724.695.8845

8042 Steubenville Pike Oakdale, PA 15071 Phone: 724.695.8150 Fax: 724.695.2860 Hours Mon: 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. Tue: 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. Wed: 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. Thu: 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. Fri: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Sat: 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Sun: CLOSED

Valley Ambulance Authority 3550 University Boulevard Moon Township, PA 15108 412.262.2040

North Fayette Director of Community Development

400 North Branch Rd Oakdale, PA 15071 Phone: 412.788.4888 or 724.693.9601 Fax: 724.693.8132

Administration Township Manager Mr. Robert T. Grimm

Parks & Recreation Director Bob Brozovich 724.693.3118; 412.788.4888, ext. 118

Mr. Brian Temple 724.693.3107; 412.788.4888, ext.107

Public Works Director Mr. Victor Rogale

Real Estate Tax Collection Mr. Tom Falcioni 724.693.9366

Earned Income Tax Collection and Emergency & Municipal Services Tax Mr. Tom Falcioni 724.693.9190

Building Code Official/Code Enforcement Officer Mr. Mike Saville Phone: 724.693.3106; 412.788.4888, ext. 106

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West Allegheny

Board of Supervisors Mr. Jim Morosetti, Chairman Mr. John Meyers, Vice-Chairman Mr. J. R. Mangan, Member The Supervisors hold a Workshop meeting the first Thursday of every month at 7:30 p.m., a General Supervisors meeting the second Tuesday of every month at 7:30 p.m., and a Payroll Meeting the fourth Tuesday of every month at 7:30 p.m. in the Township Municipal Building.

Public Safety North Fayette P.D. 400 North Branch Road Oakdale, PA 15071 Phone: 724.787.8900 Fax: 724.693.9814 Chief: Jeffrey Falconer

North Fayette Twp. Volunteer Fire Dept. Station 1 Business Office 7678 Stuebenville Pike Oakdale, PA 15071-9300 Office: 412.787.2883 Fax: 412.787.3137 Station 2 8036 Steubenville Pike Imperial, PA 15126 Office: 724.695.3727

NorthWest EMS Station 195 West Allegheny North Fayette Municipal Complex 400 North Branch Road North Fayette, PA Non-Emergency 412.331.2600

Administration Mayor Ross Rohbeck, 405 Clinton Avenue Extension Oakdale, PA 15071 724.693.8382

Borough Solicitor Vince Tucceri, Esq. Gaitens, Tucceri and Nicholas 519 Court Place Pittsburgh, PA 15219 412.391.6920

Public Works Bob Patterson 6115 Noblestown Road Oakdale, PA 15071 Phone: 724.693.9740 Fax: 724.693.0100

Real Estate Tax Collector Donna Swider P.O. Box 222 Oakdale, PA 15071 724.693.9889

Borough Secretary Kelly Rohbeck 6115 Noblestown Road Oakdale, PA 15071 Phone: 724.693.9740 Fax: 724.693.0100

Council Huck Gamble, Borough Council President 1 Highland Avenue Oakdale, PA 15071 724.693.9906


West Allegheny School District

Paul Hennemuth, Borough Council Vice President 110 Jade Drive Oakdale, PA 15071 724.693.9628

Mailing Address: P.O. Box 55 Imperial, PA 15126 Phone: 724.695.3422

Keith Merlino, Councilman 16 Vincennes Avenue Oakdale, PA 15071 724.693.2844 Tom Potts, Councilman 305 Clinton Avenue Oakdale, PA 15071 Bud Sturgeon, Councilman 4050 Noblestown Road Oakdale, PA 15071 724.693.2748

Administration Superintendent John DiSanti 724.695.5211

Asst. Supt. Curriculum - Inst. Chris Assetta 724.695.5204

Asst. Supt. Person Student Svcs.

Public Safety

William Englert 724.695.5216

Oakdale P.D.

Business Manager

6115 Noblestown Road Oakdale, PA 15071 724.693.9639 724.693.0740 (Fax) Chief Dr. James J. Lauria

Jerry Wessel 724.695.5212

Coordinator of Pupil Services

Oakdale Hose Company

Elaine Fitzgerald 724.695.5221

6111 Noblestown Road Oakdale, PA 15071 Station: 724.693.9408 Fax: 724.693.0742 Emergency: 911


Communications Coordinator Carol Bonnar 724.695.5274

Water, Sewage, and Trash Services

School Board

The Oakdale Borough 724.693.9740

Debbie Mirich (president) Patrick Konieczny (vice president) Eugene Sciulli Dr. Anne Bolind Tracy Kosis John Scott Robert Ostrander Ed Faux Ronald Pasic

Allegheny Power: 800.255.3443.

Columbia Gas: 888.460.4332

Comcast: 724.745.4734

Schools West Allegheny High School 205 West Allegheny Road Imperial, PA 15126 Call Off: 724.695.1545 Phone: 724.695.7368 Fax: 724.695.8690 Principal: Daniel Smith

West Allegheny Middle School 207 West Allegheny Road Imperial, PA 15126 Call Off: 724.695.1583 Phone: 724.695.8979 Fax: 724.695.8211 Principal: Mr. Richard Smith

Donaldson Elementary School 600 Donaldson Road Oakdale, PA 15071 Call Off: 724.213.1013 Phone: 724.213.1010 Fax: 724.213.1002 Principal: Patricia Nolan

McKee Elementary School 1501 Oakdale Road Oakdale, PA 15071 Call Off: 724.695.5264 Phone: 724.693.8451 Fax: 724.693.0924 Principal: Thomas Orr

Wilson Elementary School 100 Bruno Lane Imperial, PA 15126 Phone: 724.695.3300 Call-Off Number: 724.695.1548 Fax: 724.695.0610 Principal: Mrs. Kathleen Sites

Verizon: 800.660.2215

West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 39


shelter ht for the she boug es li p p su e with all th

My wife and I would like to share a story with you for the magazine in the South Fayette and North Fayette areas. Our 11-year-old daughter, Alexandra, a sixth-grader at West Allegheny Middle School, came to us two weeks before Christmas and said she wanted to do something charitable for Christmas this year. She went on to say she wanted to do something for the shelter animals. She tended to think Alexandra with that the sheltered animals are forgotten about a WAHS volunt eer with the check paying fo at the Holidays. She decided she would go out r the “Get Out Of Jail Frees” door to door and ask for donations for the Washington Area Humane Society. She went out across two weekends and collected $699. With the funds collected, she bought 3 Kuranda beds, paid the adoption fees for 2 dogs and 2 cats under the WAHS “Get out of Jail free” program, and bought a ton of items off the shelter’s wish/needs list. A Kuranda bed is a raised bed so that the dogs (and cats) don’t have to lay/sleep on the cold cement or on the cage rails. The “Get out of jail free” program is when the adoption fee is paid for a specific animal(s) and when the prospective adopters happen to select the prepaid animal and get approved to adopt, then and only then, they find out their new pet is already paid for. My wife and I can’t say how proud of her we are. It’s not often that a child her age would even think of doing something charitable at Christmas. And the fact that Alexandra did this all on her own, I think really shows the true meaning of Christmas. Alexandra says: “I worry that people forget about the shelter animals at Christmas time and I am happy I was able to raise money to help them. I hope to raise even more money next year!”

Alexandra on one of her collection days and I can say it was the coldest day that she went out

John E. & Tonya S. Yingst

John E. & Tonya S. Yingst North Fayette Township (McDonald), PA 15057

3 of the four animals Alexandra chose to “Get Out Of Jail Free” from left to right, Vista, Peanut, and Sophie

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West Allegheny

By: Ann Ferguson & Julie Barnes

March is a time to prune: butterfly bushes and Annabelle hydrangea should be cut down to 12˝, hypericum or St. John’s wort, 6-9˝, while perennials such as asters, black-eyed Susan, coneflower and ornamental grasses should be sheared down to the ground. Remove dead, broken, diseased or insect infested branches from shrubs or trees by making a parallel cut ¼ inch away from the main branch. When pruning diseased branches, always clean your tools after each cut with alcohol or household bleach. Do not paint over pruning cuts because this slows down the healing process. Instead, let the woody plant take care of itself by allowing the wound to heal naturally. Clean up garden debris. Apply dormant oil spray to any tree and shrub (excluding blue spruce) plagued by scale insects or mites. In the recent past, many tomatoes have succumbed to a blight caused by a fungus easily spread by wind-blown spores from as far as 30 miles away. These blight spores will survive from one season to the next and are totally unaffected by freezing. Consider purchasing contact fungicides now to treat your tomato plants, especially if you or your neighbor experienced a blight problem last year. Contact fungicides are edible. But, make sure you always read the label!

Once forsythia blooming starts to wind down, it is time for an application of Pre-emergent treatment against crabgrass and weeds. However, grass seed will not germinate when a pre-emergent is used. Choose whether to over seed your lawn or fight against the crabgrass and weeds instead. Both cannot be done at the same time. According to the Month to Month Guide for the MidAtlantic Region, it is time to put Osmocote on perennials; holly-tone on shrubs such as rhododendrons, or azaleas; and to fertilize ornamental trees, shrubs, and fruit trees as well. Rose-tone will follow in April. General lawn care times: Easter, Memorial Day, Fourth of July, and Labor Day.

Thoroughly wash all fruit and vegetables to remove bacteria, dirt, or chemical residues. This includes prepackaged fruits and vegetables as well, although a label may assert that they were pre-washed. An increase in light levels stirs houseplants or tropical plants from their winter rest. Now is the time to begin feeding them. This is to replace the washed out nutrients that leached from their potting mixes after repeated watering. If you haven’t done so already, begin to spray or apply granules for critter control. Rotate or change your treatments often to ensure that the critters do not get used to anything. This will teach them not to dine in your yard. West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 41


Never Turn A Blind Eye The mission of the Lions International Club is to empower volunteers to serve their communities, meet humanitarian needs, encourage peace, and promote international understanding through Lions Clubs.

In some areas, however, dwindling numbers have made that mission harder to accomplish. Such is the case with the Lions Club of Imperial, whose president, Alpha Cogar, said the club is down to seven members from the 30 or so it used to enjoy. “Having 30 members was a good, working number for the club,” Cogar said. “But as the club has gotten older, a lot of us have died off or moved away. Our club has dwindled down to very few people, and we’ve been looking for people to join. People are so busy these days; it’s hard to get them to join anything—almost impossible.” However, joining the Lions International is easy. The club, which started out as a businessman’s club, is open to men and women, whether they’re in business or not. The club meets the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. at the Presbyterian church in Imperial, Cogar said. Dues for the club are just $30 a year. “It’s a relaxed meeting. It gives people a chance to get off work, comb their hair, and come, but they can come straight from work also,” he said. “They used to require suits for the meetings, but it’s much more casual today. We’re not a fancy club.” For not being “fancy” the Lions do some amazing things, even when there are only seven of them. “The work we do is mainly for the blind. We furnish glasses for the kids at school,” Cogar said. “If the kids need glasses and the school knows about it, they’ll contact us and we’ll furnish them with glasses. We also go to Walmart and collect donations. Generally, we get a lot of response from the public. We stand out there with our bucket and ask for donations to help the blind, and people will come through.” Their dedication to the blind stems from a 1925 address to the Lions at the International Convention in Cedar Point, Ohio, by Helen Keller, who challenged the Lions to be “knights for the blind in the crusade against darkness.” Every year, the Lions celebrate Helen Keller Day

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on June 1 and work on sight-related service projects around the world. The organization was founded in Chicago in 1917 by Melvin Jones. The name “Lions” was chosen because the organization believed the lion to be symbolic of strength, courage, fidelity, and vital action. Jones was an insurance agent who started his agency in 1913 in Chicago and joined a networking group called the “Business Circle” to further establish his business. Jones believed that groups based solely around financial gain were destined to ultimately wither, and he set out to form an organization of community and business leaders dedicated to improving the community as a whole. By 1945, he was presenting on behalf of Lions International before the United Nations. Jones died in 1961, but the group he founded lives on today with more than 45,000 Lions Clubs worldwide comprised of more than 1.35 million members. Cogar said anyone interested in joining Lions of Imperial can stop by any regular meeting or contact him directly at 724.513.7616.

West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 43

Scrapbooking by Inches

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Volunteer Tax Preparers Are Needed!

Volunteer Tax Preparers are needed to provide free income tax assistance for hardworking individuals and families in Allegheny County. Your volunteer experience is a short-term commitment (3+ hours per week from January-April), convenient (our six free tax sites are located across Allegheny County and close to where you live and work), and easy to schedule (daytime, evening, and weekend hours are available). If you have experience preparing your own tax returns, we need you! Learn more about the Free Tax Campaign at

West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 45

So when it comes to finding that perfect dress and getting your hair done just so, a little planning can go a long way towards making the difference between a night that’s mediocre and a night that’s magical. Jenn Lementowski, co-owner of Reflect, a women’s boutique in Settler’s Ridge in Robinson, said that this year’s fashions will be a lot of the tried and true that proms have been known for in the past few years.

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“There will be a lot of patterns and a lot of basic silk dresses with beading and rhinestones,” Lementowski said. “Those have always been popular, and they’ll be popular this year as well.” Lementowski, who attends national fashion shows with her business partner, Kristy Picard, said that the duo is bringing long and short dresses to market this year. But, because of the popularity of the short dresses, the long dresses will only be offered in two sizes. Lementowski said that prom shoppers will want to allow time for proper fitting and alterations, so waiting until the last minute should not be an option. Regardless of where they go to shop, Lementowski said that people should plan on spending between $300 and $500 on the dress, depending on the level of detailing and material. “It is a pretty big expense, but I’ve noticed that people are willing to spend that much on a prom dress,” Lementowski said, “especially if their daughter’s a senior. I have seen people spending anywhere from $500 to $600 on a dress.” While prom is a singular event, there is hope for the dress after it’s over for those who can’t justify spending that kind of money on a dress meant to be worn one time.

Lementowski said that many women use the dress after prom to wear to weddings. “Depending on what type of dress they get, a lot of people may cut it and make it into a shorter dress and get it tailored,” Lementowski said. “That’s what I’ve seen, mostly.” As far as hairstyles go, John Gamble of John Edwards Color and Design said this season’s special occasion hairstyles will be a tip of the hat to the 1970s. “We predict this spring’s special occasion hairstyles will be somewhat reminiscent of the ‘70s, with a fuller, more romantic silhouette,” Gamble sad. “Although the smooth, sleek looks we've been doing in recent years will still be around, we’re definitely seeing a trend towards texture and fullness and expect that to carry over into this year’s prom season.” Gamble also said that color will be “multidimensional,” and the trend is toward softer, more natural hair. No matter where you get your dress, or do your hair, make sure you plan ahead and make your appointments for fittings and stylings early. As prom creeps up – and it will be here before you know it – knowing that you’re booked for hair, nails, and fitting will take several layers of stress off of you so that you have more time to plan that after-prom party!

West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 47

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West Allegheny | Spring 2011 | 49

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