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Volume 29 No. 4

April 2013

City of Asylum will anchor Manchester’s ‘miracle’ library continues to grow the Garden Theater Block By Kelsey Shea

Photo by Kelsey Shea

Manchester volunteer Wallace Sapp and Educating Teens about HIV/ AIDS Inc.’s Kezia Ellison in Manchester’s new school library.

By Kelsey Shea Even after receiving book donations from around the world this fall, the volunteers and administrators behind the new school library at Manchester K-8 haven’t lost momentum. The bright, cheery library is on the second floor of the building is freshly painted soft greens and yellows that match custom murals on the walls and plush reading spots on the floor. It has reading tables, computers, a world map, a flat screen TV and more than 10,000 new or gently used children’s books on the shelves, and volunteers are reading to first graders as part of the new Manchester Reads program every week. It’s hard to imagine that last summer, the library room was unused, dirty, unorganized and without books. “It was truly a miracle,” said Wallace Sapp, who volunteers at

Manchester and helped organize the books make the new library possible. But at the beginning of the 20122013 school year, Manchester K-8 was entering another year as one of the 10 PPS schools without library service. Six months into the school year first graders are asking to take books home from the Manchester school library, thanks to several dedicated community members, nonprofits and a powerful social media post. At the beginning of the school year, PPS introduced a new requirement that all schools have at least one day of library services as a part of an initiative to provide educational equity throughout the district. Sheila May-Stein, a day-to-day sub hired to rehab school libraries, arrived at Manchester in September “horrified” to find the library room

See Library, page 24

A new agreement between Garden Theater Block developers and City of Asylum will push forward two major projects on the lower Northside. City of Asylum announced in mid-March that its new literary venue, community center and book shop Alphabet City will be an anchor in the Garden Theater Block development. “We think this is just great… What could be better than to be a part of the most important gateway to our neighborhood,” said Henry Reese, City of Asylum director and founder. City of Asylum signed the lease for Masonic Hall and several ground-level buildings on West North Avenue, where they will host readings, community events and run a café and bookstore. The agreement between the two Northside organizations effectively solves two separate problems

they’ve wrestled for the past year. In working to fill the empty storefronts of the long-dilapidated Garden Theater Block, Allegheny City Development Group, LLC, which is run through developer Zukin Realty, hit several bumps along the way. As far back as early 2011, the Philadelphia-based developer announced that they were only months away from signing leases with businesses ranging from ice cream parlors to yoga studios. East End Food Co-op was publicly mentioned as a possible tenant for the Masonic building in 2011 and there was a singed letter of intent from Nakama Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi Bar announced in 2012. However Nakama and the Food Co-op both ultimately turned down the Garden Theater Block space, which stalled the renovations and left the key Masonic building empty. Meanwhile several blocks away,

See Garden Theater, page 24

A NS look at the mayoral race By Kelsey Shea For 19 of the past 20 years, the City of Pittsburgh has had a mayor that was born and raised on Pittsburgh’s Northside, but that looks to change in the coming election. Tom Murphy and our current Mayor Luke Ravenstahl both called a Northside neighborhood home at one point in their lives, but Ravenstahl’s announcement last month that he wouldn’t seek reelection and City Council President Darlene Harris’ late-March withdrawal from the race will change that high Northside percentage of recent years.

The five candidates entering the democratic primary are City Controller Michael Lamb of Mount Washington, Councilman Bill Peduto of Point Breeze, former state Auditor General Jack Wagner of Beechview, state Rep. Jake Wheatley of the Hill District and A.J. Richardson of Sheraden. So to better acquaint readers with the candidates, the Northside Chronicle talked to several about our Northside neighborhoods, projects initiatives and the future each candidate sees for the city.

See Candidates page 4


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THE NORTHSIDE CHRONICLE 922 Middle St. • Pittsburgh, PA 15212

April 2013

Community Meetings To have your community meeting included, email editor@thenorthsidechronicle.com Allegheny West Civic Council 2nd Tuesday, monthly, 7:30 p.m. Calvary United Methodist Church 412.323.8884

Manchester Citizens Corporation Quarterly meetings, call for times MCC Center, 1319 Allegheny Ave. 412.323.1743

Brighton Heights Citizens Federation 2nd Thursday, bi-monthly, 7 p.m. Morrow Elementary School 412.734.0233

Manchester Public Safety Meeting Quarterly meetings, call for times Northside Leadership Conference 412.323.1743

Managing Editor Kelsey Shea E-mail: editor@thenorthsidechronicle.com

Brightwood Civic Group 3rd Tuesday, bi-monthly, 7 p.m. Pressley Ridge, 2611 Stayton St. 412.732.8152

Northside Rotary Club Every Friday, noon Cardello Building, 2nd Floor

Advertising Manager Jena Ruszkiewicz E-mail: advertising@thenorthsidechronicle.com

Brightwood Community Emergency Response Shelter 3rd Thursday, monthly, 6 p.m. 3219 Central Ave.

www.thenorthsidechronicle.com Phone 412-321-3919 • Fax 412-321-1447 Mail Subscriptions are available at a rate of $30 per year.

California-Kirkbride Blockwatch 3rd Thursday, monthly, 7 p.m. 1601 Brighton Rd., 3rd floor California-Kirkbride Neighbors 2nd Thursday, monthly, 7 p.m. 1601 Brighton Rd., 3rd floor 412.758.3898 Central Northside Neighborhood Council

2013 Advertising rates: SIZE Black & White Color 1/8 page $56 $68 1/4 page $118 $157 1/2 page $229 $295 Full page $452 $585 Back Page $616 Center Spread $965 Discounts of up to 20% off rate card price for multiple-insertion contracts

DISCLAIMER: The viewpoints and opinions of the writers and contributors that appear in The Northside Chronicle do not necessarily reflect the viewpoints, opinions, beliefs or positions of The Northside Chronicle’s publishers, editors, staff and/or affiliates. The Northside Chronicle is not affiliated with any formal political, social, religious, educational or philosophical organization or party of any kind. The materials comprising The Northside Chronicle are provided by various organizations, community groups, advertisers, entities, writers and contributors and are provided as a service to the readers of The Northside Chronicle on an “as-is” basis for informational purposes only. The Northside Chronicle assumes no responsibility for any copyright infringement, errors or omissions in these materials and expressly disclaims any representations or warranties, express or implied, including, without limitation, any implied warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose regarding the correctness, accuracy, completeness, timeliness and reliability of the information provided. The Northside Chronicle is not responsible for damages of any kind arising out of use, reference to, or reliance upon such information. Reference herein to any commercial product, process or service does not constitute or imply endorsement or favoring by The Northside Chronicle. © The Northside Chronicle 2011

2nd Monday, monthly, 7 p.m. Allegheny Traditional Academy 412.231.7742

Charles Street Area Council 1st Monday, monthly, call for times Pittsburgh Project, 2801 N. Charles St. 412.321.5567 Community Alliance of Spring Garden/ East Deutschtown 2nd Tuesday, monthly, 6:30 p.m. Fuhrer Building of St. Michael’s Church 412.977.1979 Deutschtown New Hope Council 3rd Thursday, monthly, 6:30 p.m. Community Center, 623 Suismon St. East Allegheny Community Council 2nd Tuesday, monthly, 7 p.m. Bistro to Go 412.321.1204 Ex-offender Aftercare Support Group Saturdays, 4-5:30 p.m. Allegheny Center Alliance Church 801 Union Place Fineview Citizens Council 3rd Wednesday, monthly, 6:30 p.m.

Upper Rooms at Reformed Presbyterian Home

Perrysville Ave. 412.231.0330

Mexican War Streets Society 3rd Tuesday, monthly, 7 p.m. AUU Church, Resaca Pl. and North Ave. 412.323.9030

Northside Coalition for Fair Housing Board 2nd Monday, monthly, 6:30 p.m. 1821 Brighton Rd. 412.321.5527 Northside Coalition for Fair Housing Membership Monthly, call for times 1821 Brighton Rd. 412.321.5521 Northside Leadership Conference Call for times 4 Allegheny Center, Suite 601 412.330.2559 North Side Lions Club 2nd and 4th Tuesday, monthly, noon Max’s Allegheny Tavern North Side Public Safety Council 1st Thursday, monthly, 5:30 p.m. Northside Leadership Conference 412.330.2559 Observatory Hill, Inc. 3rd Wednesday, monthly, 7 p.m. Byzantine Seminary, 3605 Perrysville Ave. 412.231.2887 Perry Hilltop Citizens’ Council 4th Monday, monthly, 7:30 p.m. Angel’s Place, 2605 Norwood St. 412.321.4632 The Promise Group Every other Tuesday, 6 p.m. Western Pa. Humane Society 412.321.1019 Troy Hill Citizens Council Sept. 13, Dec. 13, 7 p.m. Grace Lutheran Church 412-321-2852 Spring Hill Civic League May 7, Sept. 10, Oct. 1. Nov. 5 7 p.m., Spring Hill Elementary School contact@shcl.org Summer Hill Citizens Committee 3rd Tuesday, monthly, 6:30 p.m. WPXI Television Station community room


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Nonprofits collaborate to connect NS residents to jobs By Kelsey Shea

Photo by Kelsey Shea

NCA Executive Director Carol Washington and NSLC Workforce Development Development Assistant Sheryl Smith.

The Northside Leadership Conference and the North Shore Community Alliance are joining forces to help Northsiders find sustainable jobs in a new program aptly titled Northside Works!. The two Northside nonprofits have been working separately for years to connect neighbors with jobs, collaborating only occasionally. Northside Works! is the first formal partnership formed between the two agencies and looks to draw on the strengths of each program to place neighbors in jobs that can support families and the hyper local economy. “Good, sustainable jobs are the foundation of neighborhood revitalization,” said Mark Fatla, executive director

of the NSLC. “If people are working, then people have money to spend in our business districts… They have an opportunity to own a home. They have an opportunity to build a family.” NCA Executive Director Carol Washington called the program a “wonderful blend of two services,” and noted that agencies like the NCA and NSLC working together is what makes the Northside different. Northside Works! looks to capitalize on the accessibility NSLC’s preexisting Neighborhood Employment Center computer station in the centrally located Allegheny Center building and incorporate it with NCA’s more robust workforce development program that offers services like career assessment and job skills training.

The initiative was announced on March19 after a month-long soft launch that Sheryl Smith, NSLC workforce development assistant, said is already drawing more Northsiders to the program. The NSLC has served about 25 more people a month than they did before the program, bringing their total monthly number up to 100 job seekers served. The Pittsburgh Partnership for Neighborhood development will fund the first year of the project. Talia Piazza, PPND program coordinator, explained that collaborations between multiple community development groups “is exactly what we’re looking to fund.” To get involved with Northside Works! contact Sheryl Smith at the NSLC or call 412-322-7400.


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April 2013

2013 Mayoral Primary Candidates Michael Lamb

! e t Vo , y 21 a M 3 201

What do you think is the most important project in the Northside right now?

How would you divide resources between different neighborhoods?

As Mayor, what initiatives would you push that would most directly affect city residents?

Current job: City Controller Neighborhood: Mt. Washington Where you’ll find him in the Northside:Montery Pub, Banjo Night and Riverview Park trails trails

Bill Peduto

Current job: City Councilman from District 8 Neighborhood: Point Breeze Where you’ll find him in the Northside: Legends of the North Shore, Monterey Pub, Mattress factory and the Allegheny Observatory

Jake Wheatley

Current job: State Representative Neighborhood: The Hill District Where you’ll find him in the Northside: Running throuh the Central Northside, Young Brothers Bar and Carmi Family Restaurant

“There are a lot of good projects happening in the Northside. But I think the key is what’s going to happen around Federal Street and the Garden Theater Block. It’s so key to the appearance and success of the neighborhoods. I would also extend that notion to Allegheny Center and what’s happening there”

There are a couple. Obviously the Garden Theater district is long overdue, and it needs to be an anchor for Federal North…I like the approach of bringing in local businesses instead of big box retail stores.

They’re all very important... The East Ohio Street corridor I think is something that we need to focus on. We’ve always tried to support our neighborhood gateways.Residential housing projects in Manchester, Brightwood and the Mexican War Streets are also going to play a key role. All of these things are important and vital, and it’s important that they all link together.

I do think that there are a lot of neighborhoods that are struggling. The next mayor needs to understand neighborhood equity and make a commitment to dividing resources fairly. We’re looking at remaking the way that the system works so that the mayor’s office can be better engaged and have a better understanding of neighborhood needs.

There has to be priorities for each neighborhood based on community feedback. I would work with communities to establish priorities regarding what can realistically be done with what resources are there. I think one of the things I bring that no other candidate has is extensive experience in neighborhood revitalization… I’ve worked with over $4 billion in community development money, and I know how to bring communities and developers together.

You need to look at the different neighborhoods and identify projects that will be catalytic and lead to real change in neighborhoods. We don’t have an endless supply of tax dollars, but we will look at what neighborhoods individually. We will do our best to make sure we have a fair and transparent system that isn’t based on who you know, but on what value is in your project and how it can help or save a neighborhood.

If this city is going to succeed, the next mayor needs to be much more involved in public education. It really is the key to success. As mayor, I would be much more directly involved.

I basically believe in sweating the small stuff. I believe in Mayor Giuliani’s broken window theory. If you let a broken window go, there will be garbage. You’ve got to fix the broken window. I think we’ve been lax about going after absentee land lords and building code violations.

I think the thing that would most directly affect resident would be the initiative to create jobs and build a strong workforce. I want to work with Pittsburgh companies to create jobs in energy, technology and health care and make sure that residents are qualified to take those jobs.

Do you have your own questions for the candidates? The North Side North Shore Chamber of Commerce will host a candidates night on Thursday April 4 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the National Aviary. The event is free and those in attendance are encouraged to ask questions of the candidates and bring business cards. Hors d’ouvres will be donated by Atria’s Catering.


The Northside Chronicle

April 2013

By Kelsey Shea

Jack Wagner

Job: Former Pennsylvania Auditor General Neighborhood: Point Breeze Where you’ll find him in the Northside:Montery Pub, Banjo Night and Riverview Park trails I think it’s a continuation on improving the quality of life on the Northside that really matters and making sure that city government is working every way it can in business districts like East Ohio Street and in individual neighborhoods like Troy Hill. You can’t pick one over the other. You look at the North Shore and all it represents of what can happen as far as bringing in jobs and people.

For continuing coverage, check out the Northside Chronicle’s website every Thursday for our online edition.

I think it’s vitally important that every neighborhood has opportunities to get the resources they need, and we need more resources. I think one of the strengths I bring to the table is my ability to communicate well with Harrisburg and bring some of those funds to the city.

There are a whole number of initiatives I would certainly support, starting with the basics like public safety. Public safety is high priority because it’s people’s minds, and that means supporting Zone 1 and city firefighters. I would also look at quality of life issues by making sure that absentee landlords are taking care of their properties, and that means having close working relationships with neighborhood groups, business districts and community development corporations. I also think the mayor needs to be a strong supporter of public education, because education is critically important to addressing social problems.

Candidates Night April 4 5:30-7:30 p.m. The National Aviary

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Public art tour held on the lower Northside By Megan Trimble

Photo by Kelsey Shea

Those who attended the Northside walking tour will find out a bit more about Keny Marshall’s reCarstruction outside the Children’s Museum.

Northside art was put on display last month for community members who toured local neighborhoods public arts. The Office of Public Art hosted a walking tour of selected works of art in the Northside as a part of its city-wide walking tours program on Friday, March 22 from 6 to 7:15 p.m. Participants met at Buhl Community Park — near the entrance of the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh— before embarking on the trip that will visit Keny Marshall’s reCarstruction and the colorful residences of City of Asylum writers. The 75-minute tour—which included lectures by guest speakers Marshall and Henry Reese, co-founder of City of Asylum/Pittsburgh— was part of a monthly series of walking tours. Tour participants explored how Keny Marshall deconstructed his 1983 Jeep Wagoneer and reformed it to create a spherical piece of art titled reCARstruction. The tour then moved towards Sampsonia Way to learn about City of Asylum— an urban residency program that provides temporary sanctuary for writers and artist under threat in their home countries. This portion explored how the houses of the program incorporate the works of writers and visual artists. Renee Piechocki, Office of Public Art Direc-

tor, said the tour was a part of the “ongoing programming to help provide people in the community an opportunity to gain a greater knowledge and appreciation of the works of arts in our communities.” Piechocki said the monthly walking tours form a “diverse gathering” of about 20 participants who range in age — often from teenagers to people in their 80s— and knowledge. “Some are people from the neighborhoods of the tours who have seen the art but want to know a bit more,” She said. “Others are not from the area, but say something like, ‘Oh, I never go to East Liberty, I really want to hear about the artwork there.’” Although the citywide walking tours last around an hour, participants spend much of their time listening to lectures on the works of art. Friday’s tour is near a mile in length. Piechocki said gaining a “behind the scenes look or insider’s perspective” on the art will be her favorite part of the tour. “It is always a treasure to hear an artist talk about their work,” she said. The monthly walking tours are supported in part by the Fine Foundation.


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April 2013

John Canning

Sandwiches of the Northside’s past derst’s tavern where one of the big draws was Limberger on rye with a cold draft. It was my Uncle “Bun” who introduced me to this “other” Niederst’s. The big draw here was Limberger cheese served on rye, a specialty no longer found on any Northside menu. I am certain, however, that there are many Limberger lovers scattered throughout our neighborhoods. Hats off to the folks who organized and carried off the 2012 Northside Sandwich contest last June. It was a pleasure to watch Rick Sebak’s recent segment about the event and the local eateries that entered into the contest on WQED last month. The mouthwatering sandwich shops set the stage for an even more successful event this year on June 20. While watching Sebak incorporate sandwich entries with their culinary creators my mind wandered to great Northside sandwiches of the past – my past. So I’ve decided to list just a few.

Two Niedersts. Two different sandwich traditions.

The “Club Sandwich #1” at Mrs. Marcella Neiderst’s great restaurant on the corner of East and East Ohio Streets was on the menu for decades. It was the classic triple-decker filled with turkey (from real roasted turkeys), bacon, lettuce, tomato and mayo. This never failed to satisfy. A few blocks away, tucked in the heart of “Deutchtown” was Mr. Nie-

Rohler’s Cannibals

These two great sandwiches were taken off the Northside by government food inspectors or Health Department regulators. Fritz Rohler’s tavern on Troy Hill was known throughout the city for its “cannibal” specialty. Freshly ground round steak mixed with salt and pepper and topped by a sprinkling of chopped onions was served raw and openfaced on a slice of dark rye bread. This was no surprise to me in that I was brought up in a home where my mom always had the butcher grind the round steak twice before taking it home. She would often fix herself a “baby cannibal” prior to making meatloaf or spaghetti sauce.

The Mayfield’s Baked Ham

While delivering mail from the Observatory Hill Post Office in the summers of 1960 and 1961, I was introduced to the Mayfield Restaurant’s fantastic baked ham sandwich. Located at the corner of Perrysville and Kennedy, the Mayfield was always packed at lunchtime.

On the bar was a wire stand holding a giant baked ham. I imagine there were other items on the menu, but it seemed to me that every lunchtime customer ordered a ham sandwich, a high stack of thin slices from the ham on the bar.

Bard’s Ham Salad

Fridays, in our family, was shopping day, and so my sister Judy and I were given money to buy lunch near John Morrow School. Sometimes we went to the lunch counter at Munsch’s Drug and Novelty store, but more often, we headed to Bard’s, which was near the corner of California and Termon Avenues. Bard’s was part of a chain of dairy stores similar to Islays. There my sandwich of choice was Ham Salad. Although our Dad cautioned us that you never know what they ground into the “Ham” Salad. It was probably very little ham, but, at Bard’s it was always tasty, fresh and cheap. A well-filled sandwich on Town Talk was only 20 cents – a bargain in its day.

The California Inn’s Fish Sandwich

Several years later, while at Oliver High, I had a daily after school job cleaning cookie sheets, cake pans and mixing kettles at Evan’s Bakery on California Avenue – not far from Bard’s. Frequently, on Fridays, I would stop by the California Inn and order several of their fish sandwiches for our family’s dinner. In the days be-

fore the massive number of Lenten fish frys, I thought the California Inn’s giant fish sandwich was about the best you could get. At the time the ultimate fish place on the Northside was Wiegands atJames and Foreland. But in terms of cost and size the California Inn’s sandwich was definitely the better deal. Alas both Bard’s and the “inn” are part of the long gone history of California Avenue.

The Shamrock’s Ground Steak Sandwich

In the 1950s the most upscale restaurant on the Northside was the Shamrock Inn on Western Avenue. The Shamrock was primarily a steak place that often had jazz musicians performing on weekends. You had to look nice at the Shamrock – no jeans. It was here that my friends and I learned that another name for a hamburger was a ground steak sandwich. It was more pricey than hamburgers but really delicious – a good memory. Folks throughout our Northside neighborhoods could add many similar sandwich memories to this list. But with new creations in the works, I am looking forward to the ground bacon/beef slider that will entered by the chefs at the Penn Brewery in the 2013 Northside Sandwich Best Contest. Keep your eyes on the Northside Chronicle for the dates and location of this year’s sampler.


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Saturday Light Brigade celebrates 35 years on the air

Larry and Rikki Berger accept a proclaimation from City Council on March 16.

By Kelsey Shea The Northside-based radio program The Saturday Light Brigade celebrated 35 years on the air last month with a proclamation from Pittsburgh City Council and an on-air celebration at The Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh. SLB is a nonprofit organization housed in the Children’s Museum that works with local youth using audio storytelling as a learning tool

and narrative platform. Their weekly radio program is broadcast from the museum every Saturday morning from 6 a.m. to noon and is one of the longest running public radio programs in the country. Pittsburgh City Council declared Saturday March 16 “Saturday Light Brigade Day” in the city of Pittsburgh. SLB moved to the Northside nine years ago when the Children’s Museum’s renovations allowed space

for the radio program. SLB founder and Executive Director Larry Berger reflected on the program’s dramatic growth since relocating to the Northside. “The Northside was a great place for us,” said Berger noting the accessible location, great space in the museum and the number of schools within walking distances, all factors he said enabled SLB’s growth. When the program moved into the Children’s Museum in 2004 it was run by volunteers and had an annual budget of $7,500. SLB now has 11 employees and has an annual budget of $450,000. In those nine years, SLB has worked with students from Pittsburgh King, Allegheny Traditional Academy, Manchester, Propel Northside and Manchester Academic Charter Schools, teaching them audio skills and helping their voices and their stories be heard. Berger estimates that SLB serves 8,000 young Pittsburghers each year through its various programs. Looking forward, Berger hopes that SLB will continue its work and find new ways to reach people.

“We still really believe that audio and radio are great forms for people to express themselves and find out about other people, and we don’t expect that to change,” he said. “Radio still works, but we’ve come up with new ways to allow people’s voices to be heard.” One way SLB is reaching a new audience is through storyboxes installed throughout the city. A story box is a digital platform for sharing the authentic voices of children within the community that was specially developed by SLB. Storyboxes are 21” x 12” x 4” boxes that can be mounted on a wall or placed on a table. The face of the device contains pictures with buttons that are pressed to hear corresponding audio. More than 70 storyboxes have been placed throughout the area in the Allegheny Library, Children’s Museum, August Wilson Center, in schools and various public places. “We’re really proud of them,” said Berger, who noted that new innovations and changes like these are what he looks forward to in the coming years for The Saturday Light Brigade.


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BH mom plans kidfriendly dance parties

Courtesy Kelly Day

Brighton Heights’ Kelly Day DJing a party in Los Angeles in 2005.

By Kelsey Shea Brighton Heights community organizer Kelly Day is looking for a new way for parents and their kids to get out that will put her massive record collection and experience as a DJ to good use. She is planning a monthly event called Kid City Rockers that will be Pittsburgh’s premier indie dance party for families that Day will DJ. Day came up with the idea when she was pregnant with her first child about three years ago. “I thought, ‘What can I do with my kids that would be aligned with my own interests,’” she explained. Day hopes that Kid City Rockers will be a “quirky family event” that attracts off-beat parents and kids from all over the city to connect and remember their own music roots. “Once you become a parent, you realize you haven’t seen your friends in so long,” explained Day.

“You can’t go out without hiring a babysitter.” Day plans to play music like The Cure, The English Beat, Cyndi Lauper, The Pixies and others from her record collection of more than 3,000 vinyls that she’s collected over the past 20 years. Though Day plans to be mindful of the language used and will play largely upbeat songs. Day was a DJ on WPTS in the early ’90s for four years, DJed at bars in Los Angeles and is alum of the JD Scratch Academy. Though Day has yet to secure a location, she plans to have the parties on the Northside, and hopes they will draw families from other parts of the city. She expects that admission will be about $5 per adult, and that kids will get in free. A portion of any proceeds from the event would go to a deserving arts nonprofit that works with youth she said.

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NS Public Safety Report This month, The Northside Public Safety Council wants to remind residnets to know who is knocking at their door to prevent robberies. “It’s best to not answer the door if you’re by yourself unless you know who is coming,” said Public Safety Council President David Stacy. In February, approximately 367 incidents were reported throughout the Northside, which led to approximately 116 arrests. The Northside Public Safety Council is a nonprofit corporation composed of community leaders, businesses, government officials the

Housing Authority, property owners and the Zone 1 Pittsburgh Police. The Northside Public Safety Committee meets the first Thursday of each month at 5:30 p.m. on the mezzanine level of The Northside Leadership Conference’s offices at 4 Allegheny Center. All are welcome. A useful resource for the community is the Zone 1 website at www.communitysafety.pittsburghpa. gov. For questions or concerns regarding crime or police presence, contact the Zone 1 Community Relations Officer, Forrest Hodges at forrest.hodges@pittsburghpa.gov.

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YINZ!

By

Nils Balls

Lint-based art project comes to BH laundromat

This winged lint creature is one of many hanging fromt he ceiling of the Trey’s Laundromat. (photo by Kelsey Shea).

By Megan Trimble A Northside artist worked to bring the community together last month — with lint. Cheryl Capezzuti of Brighton Heights presented The National Lint Project’s first major public installation in almost a decade at an opening party in Trey’s Laundromat and Brighton Café on March 23. The opening party featured a jazz band and the community was invited to see art made out of dryer lint. The National Lint Project uses dryer lint as a medium to create sculptural works that collect memories, remind onlookers of everyday life experiences and

express creativity. This installation will feature flying creatures ranging from superheroes and flying animal creatures. Although she is now a puppet maker by trade, Capezzuti’s interests in lint originated during her time working at a tight-budgeted campus art center as graduate student at Penn State in 1994. Mixing dryer lint with paste to create an inexpensive medium, Capezzuti and her peers created simple figurines. At the end of their graduate school careers, Capezzuti and her peers moved across the country, sharing stories of the project. When lint — and accompanying letters describing where the lint cam from — arrived in Capezzuti’s mailbox, the project was born. An official lint art installation was held in a Pittsburgh laundromat, Duds ‘N Suds, through 2004. The project garnered media attention and was featured on The Ellen DeGeneres Show in 2005. Shortly thereafter, Capezzuti, who felt that it was on the brink of becoming novelty art, decided to return to the project’s origins. She has engaged in a private exchange of letters from around the country and sculptured lint works about once a month. Recently, she decided to revive the project on the Northside. “The Laundromat is two blocks from my house and I meet to pick my daughter up from the bus stop near it. And so I would stand there and look and it and think, what

a beautiful Laundromat I should do another installation there,” Capezzuti said. “I thought it would be a nice way to bring neighbors together and some special to host in my community.” Capezzuti has lived in Brighton Heights for the past nine years and hasn’t hosted a laundromat installation since she lived in the East End prior to moving and having kids. Capezzuti said she has found that there are a surprising number of diverse attitudes about laundry and people see it as boring, beautiful and strange. She hopes that the installation will cause people to recognize the “aesthetics in our everyday lives.” The letters that accompany the lint submissions answer several questions — Who are you? What did you wash? How do you feel about doing laundry? “I’ve been collecting letters from people for almost 20 years, and when you read a thousand letters about that mundane daily tasks that we often take for granted it provides you with a different perspective,” Capezzuti said. “Some say here is my plain old everyday stuff, but every now and then you get a much different letter,” she said. “I just received one from a person who had a baby this summer and she talks about how doing laundry for her baby is a treat and something really sweet when she is able to fold the tiny clothes. She

didn’t necessary expect to feel that way about laundry.” Capezzuti has also received letters saying the lint comes from having washed a dog’s blanket. Others come from those who have lost a pet and write, seeking a memento that captures the animal’s spirit. The unusual and quirky nature of the project does not escape its creator. “It is a little bit strange and creepy and beautiful. All of these are wrapped up in [the project], and I love that about it,” she said. This project supported in part by the Social Innovation Exchange program –an initiative of The Pittsburgh Foundation in partnership with Pop City Media, the Luma Institute and The Sprout Fund with additional support from The Buhl Foundation — will run from March 23 through April 27. Participants can take a sculpture home for $10 on Saturday, April 27 between 10 a.m. and noon. The installation will feature about 100 hundred pieces handmade by Capezzuti. Fifty will be made from donations from neighbors and friends around the country and 50 pieces from community lint collected at Trey’s Laundromat. Each piece takes about an hour to create. “You don’t have to send me your lint to be a participant. If you smile the next time you take the lint trap out of your dryer, then you are participant,” she said.


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Northside Home Sales

2012

Data is based on recorded arm’s length sales of homes, townhomes and duplexes with a price of at least $10,000. Data was taken from RealStats and compiled by The Northside Chronicle. By Kelsey Shea The Northside housing market saw significant growth between 2011 and 2012 in almost all neighborhoods, though sales, growth and median home prices varied dramatically between neighborhoods. In 2012, 615 homes, townhomes and duplexes with a price of $10,000 or more sold in the Northside’s 15 residential neighborhoods. There were 118 more Northside homes sold in 2012 than there were in 2011, which is a 19.5 percent increase. “It is amazing at how affordable

quality, aesthetically pleasing, and inspiring homes are in neighborhoods such as Fineview, Brightwood, Brighton Heights, Spring Garden, among many others. This bodes well for the changing demographics that demonstrate and predict people are moving ... closer to the city, not only for those who find the need to sell but also for the appreciation in equity that will benefit our new neighbors,” said Jon Huck, Northside Leadership Conference real estate director. The median price for all of the Northside was $93,688, but varied widely by neighborhood. Allegheny

West had the highest median price for a home at $232,152, and Brightwood had the lowest median price for a home at $37,326. The neighborhoods of Spring Hill and Observatory Hill both saw significant growth in both the number of homes sold and median price. Manchester also showed consistent growth, selling nearly twice as many homes in 2012 than were sold in 2011. Spring Garden saw fewer home sales, but the average home sale increased to more than $70,000, where the average price of Spring Garden homes sold in 2011 was just

28,881. Historic Deutschtown had 43 homes sold, compared to the 25 sold in 2011 though median home prices stayed nearly the same. Most other neighborhood’s 2010 and 2011 numbers showed little deviation from each other showing incremental growth or change. Of the 615 Northside homes sold, 113 were in Brighton Heights, making it the most popular Northside neighborhood for homebuyers. Brighton Heights home sales made up 18.4 percent of all homes sold on the Northside.


April 2013

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Northside housing projects...

Though the Northside is known for historic rowhouses and Victorian mansions, there are redevelopment and new construction happening here as well, like these ongoing projects...

Federal Hill

Jacksonia Townhouses

Columbus Square

St. John’s Site

Central Northside

Central Northside

Manchester

Brighton Heights

The last few townhomes in the popular Federal Hill project will be completed this summer. The project’s final phase includes six townhomes and one single-family home that are still under construction on Federal Street. All homes in the final phase have sold, and the project has a waiting list of interested families who hope to call the Northside home. The completed project includes 40 three-story homes that were built in the Central Northside by developer S&A homes in collaboration with the Central Northside Neighborhood Council and the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh.

With the help of October Development, The Central Northside Neighborhood Council is looking to fill in the “missing teeth” of its neighborhood with new townhomes. The six townhomes planned for the 100 block of Jacksonia Street will be the first phase of a plan to bring 50 new homes to vacant lots in the Central Northside. Ground was broken last year, and the developers hope to finish the project by this summer. The homes will sell for around $200,000, depending on fixtures that the homeowners choose. These vacant properties were acquired with the help from a $75,000 contribution from the Urban Redevelopment Authority. The URA also awarded the CNNC with an additional $200,000 grant.

Manchester’s Columbus Square project is one of the most ambitious and successful housing developments on the Northside. The first phase of Columbus Square included five new homes and was completed in 2012. Fourth River Developers announced that they’ve closed on their first second phase home, which will be completed in early spring. The 31-home development is done in collaboration with Manchester Citizen’s Corporation and looks to offer the best of both city and suburban living. “We continue to have daily inquiries and are anxiously awaiting the start of phase 3,” said Fourth River Development’s Sally Flinn.

In late November, the Brighton Heights Citizens Federation celebrated the completion of three new homes on McClure Avenue near the former site of St. John’s Hospital. The three completed houses were phase one of an initiative that hopes to fill the vacant land where the St. John’s Hospital stood with 17-20 new homes. The three neighboring threebedroom homes at 3301, 3303 and 3307 McClure Ave. each sold for $135,000. The BHCF has also worked with the city to tear down eight vacant houses on city property to further improve the aesthetics of the lower part of Brighton Heights BHCF Prsident Pete Bellisario said that the BHCF hired a contractor to estimate what needs to be done to ready the hospital land for construction, and Tom Cummings of the URA said they hope to access state funds to make the project happen.


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Brightwood Civic Group continues Woodland Avenue’s transformation

Representatives from BCG, NSLC, Rivers Casino, the City and the NSCDF cut the ribbon at 1324 Woodland Ave. (Photo by Kelsey Shea).

By Kelsey Shea Brightwood residents are continuing to see slow and steady change on Woodland Avenue. The Brightwood Civic Group, The Northside Community Development Fund, Rivers Casino and The Northside Leadership Conference celebrated the complete renovation of 1324 and 1407 Woodland Avenue in Brightwood Thursday March 24. The two homes were the second and third houses on Woodland Avenue completed by the BCG as part of its Woodland Avenue Revitalization project. “It’s easy finding money for projects like this,” said NSCDF Executive Director Mark Masterson. “But what really great about this project is that it shows what can happen when a bunch of volunteers get together and really sweat it out and make these projects realities.” Several years ago, BCG identified neglected rental units and absentee landlords as the root of many of the problems in Brightwood and decided to make home ownership an initiative in the neighborhood, — specifically on Woodland Avenue, which BCG President Diane Annis-Dixon calls an “artery” in the community. The BCG acquired seven decrepit houses on Woodland Avenue and Brighton Road that they are now redeveloping into single family homes with the help of The Northside

Community Development Fund and Rivers Casino, who are helping fund the project. The Urban Redevelopment Authority assisted the Woodland Avenue Project by providing deferred-payment second mortgages for the home buyers and the nonprofit organization, Care Ownership, donated free building materials, fixtures and appliances. The new owner of 1324 Woodland Ave., Kira Rivera, decided to buy in Brightwood because of the tax incentives and the convenient commute to the law firm where she works on the North Shore. “I’m really excited to move in,” Rivera said, and hopes to close on the house move in by early summer. The other two new Brightwood residents who bought 1407 and 1324 are also young, first time homebuyers. “We can have wine nights,” said Meghan McAfee, who purchased 1320 Woodland. “What’s not to like about this? It’s great to have such young people purchasing these homes and moving into the neighborhood,” said Annis-Dixon. Looking forward, Annis-Dixon said that the BCG hopes to renovate 1213 Woodland Ave. or 2049 Brighton Rd., both of which the community group already own. City Councl President attended the event and said “I look forward to pounding nails at the next batch of houses.”

April 2013

Northside House Tours For an inside look at some noteworthy Northside homes, several neighborhoods hold annual house tours to show off what a great place the Northside is to live.

Allegheny West Wine Tour: June 7-8, 2013 Christmas Tour: TBA Allegheny West actually does two annual tours to show off its historic Victorian homes. In addition to the popular Christmas tour, Allegheny West now also hosts a wine tour in the spring features different wines at each location. Brighton Heights Annual Chocolate House Tour June 9, 2013 Brighton Heights will host its ninth annual house tour this June, with sweet treats in addition to great houses. Observatory Hill House Tour June 2, 2013 Observatory Hill residents will show off their nineteeth century arts and crafts bungalos at their annual tour. Magical History Tour Dates June 8 Visit many of Northside’s unique historic attractions and birthplaces of famous Americans while raising money to help rais money for Northside Common ministries. Manchester House and Garden Tour Dates TBA Historic Manchester will host its 16th annual selfguided house tour this summer in addition to its Halloween Ghost Tour in the fall! Mexican War Streets Home and Garden Tour Date TBA In late summer, many neighbors in the Central Northside open up their doors for their very popular house tour. Last year was the 43nd annual tour, and over 1,000 people attended!


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Garden Theater Block secures alternate tenant

April 2013

Manchester school library brought back from ruins

A volunteer reads to a Manchester student inside the newly restocked school library. (Photo by Kelsey Shea) The Garden Theater Block has been boarded up for years, but Northsiders hope to see CoA move into the space soon. (Photo by Kelsey Shea)

From Garden Theater, page 1 Reese was working with the Central Northside community to come to an agreement on how to develop a new literary venue on a triple lot on Monterey Street between Sampsonia Way and Jacksonia Street. Though the project was almost fully funded and initially approved by the zoning board, several neighbors concerned about noise and parking protested the use of the space and shot down the option of the Monterey Street location. Though the new location on West North Avenue will be less “cozy” than Monterey Street, Reese believes this worked out to be the better option with more visibility and less spatial constraints.

Reese said he has “dreams but no solid plans” for the Monterey lot, which is still owned by City of Asylum. Allegheny City Central Association, the newly named Central Northside Neighborhood Council, supports the project and its latest developments. “We’ve been very careful with our planning and tenant selection,” said ACCA President Barbara Talerico in a press release. “Now, with our anchor tenants secured, neighbors will begin to see construction crews on the Garden Theater site by late spring of 2013 with an anticipated completion of early 2014.” City of Asylum will join a restaurant being opened by Piccolo Forno owners called Il Giardino.

From Library page 1 neglected, with dirty walls and empty shelves. Though this was May-Stein’s second library rehab, she was shocked enough to post a picture and an “angry rant” on her Facebook that sparked a wave of support for the Northside school. “That’s when the magic started to happen,” said May-Stein. Her post caught the attention of local blogger Jessie Ramsey, of Yinzercation, who reposted MayStein’s picture of the empty shelf and started a book drive. May-Stein then created an Amazon wish list full of popular children’s titles and tweeted at authors Neil Gaiman and Laurie Halse Anderson, who reposted her call for help. Donations poured in from across the US, China, Australia and even Manchester England. By October, Manchester had received 800 books donated through May-Stein’s Amazon wish list, and more than 10,000 gently used books that were donated locally. A September story in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette caught the attention of Educating Teens about HIV/AIDS Inc. Kezia Ellison. “She read the article in the paper and was at the door of Manchester two days later. She asked me what I wanted for the library– and

I made her a list and drew her map. She left, and I thought nothing more of it,” said May-Stein. Her list included new paint, blinds and carpeting, more bookshelves, a reading chair, new blinds, a SMART board, beanbag chairs, a wall-sized map of the world, a new circulation desk and more books. Ellison came back and told May-Stein that she had recruited Sam’s Club to agree to rehabilitate the entire library according to her specifications. Between labor and supplies, Ellison estimates that Sam’s Club put over $30,000 into the Manchester library. Perlora Furniture donated professional interior designers and a pale green wool author’s chair. Perlora also found a local artist to paint the murals on the library walls. “The Manchester Miracle Library went from prison block hell to professional designer-designed … heaven,” May-Stein wrote on her blog. Ellison believes that the “Manchester Miracle,” which they’ve come to call the library project, could be a model for future public school library projects. “It was a miracle–the Manchester Miracle, and I’m honored to have been a part of it,” said MayStein.


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From the office of State Sen. Wayne Fontana

Child protection bill for Pennsylvania As a response to the Jerry Sandusky and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia child abuse scandals, the Pennsylvania General Assembly created a Task Force on Child Protection in January 2012. The mission of the task force was to review the state’s child protection laws and procedures. After months of testimony throughout the state by various advocacy groups and professionals who deal with child abuse on a daily basis, the task force released their recommendations in November 2012. At a press conference on March 18 in Harrisburg, a bipartisan package of bills was introduced that provide for sweeping reform by updating Pennsylvania’s child protection laws based on recommendations by the taskforce. My longtime proposal, now Senate Bill 31, was part of the task force’s recommendations to update Pennsylvania’s child protection laws. This legislation is long over-

due and goes a long way to protect the health and safety of our school-age youth. Currently, if there is a case of suspected child abuse in which the alleged perpetrator is a school employee, there is no requirement to report that abuse unless it rises to the level of a “serious bodily injury.” A “serious bodily injury” is equivalent to the loss of a limb or an organ that stops functioning, sexual abuse, or sexual exploitation. SB 31 would require the same reporting of child abuse regardless of whether the perpetrator is a school employee. Furthermore, under the Child Protection Law, current school employees are only required to report such incidents to their supervisors, who then may decide whether it rises to a level of reporting it to ChildLine or to law

enforcement. ChildLine is a program within the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare that accepts calls from the public which provides information, counseling, and referral services for authorities or victims of abuse. SB 31 would remove the different reporting requirement for school employees and put them on the same level as other mandated reporters. Mandatory reporters have to report the incident directly to child line or the police. School employees would still report to their supervisors as well but this is for the sole purpose of keeping the school administrator informed of such incidents of child abuse. School employees also include those of institutions of higher education under SB 31.

I have introduced a form of this bill since 2005 and have worked with stakeholders and taken the recommendations of the task force to further improve upon the measure. Child abuse is a serious issue and the recent incidents throughout Pennsylvania have provided the General Assembly, with the help of the task force, the opportunity to implement comprehensive reform that will improve child protection and initiate investigations of reported abuse more quickly. It’s imperative for the General Assembly to quickly pass SB 31 as well all of the other pieces of legislation introduced under this package of child abuse reform. Senator Wayne D. Fontana 42nd Senatorial District www.senatorfontana.com


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Brighton Heights John Robirds to Matthew and Katherine Pickell at 3645 Brighton Road for $175,500. Village Land LLC to Jason Bernard and Jennifer Sweet at 1414 Termon Ave. for $175,000. Deutsche Bank National Trust Co. trustee to Kristoffer Bennett at 1913 Termon Ave. for $60,099. Vincent Mazza to Nakisha Davis at 3550 Brighton Road for $83,900. Pittsburgh City to Danielle Miller at 3316 Gass Ave. for $2,900. Federal National Mortgage Assn. to William and Sherri Thornton at 4132 Gittens St. for $39,500. Rodney Necciai to Carol Haines at 309 Squire Circle for $131,000. Regina Knight to Federal National Mortgage Assn. at 3438 Fleming Ave. for $3,651 by sheriff ’s deed. Michael Gaborko III to Bruno Properties LLC at 1500 Orchlee St.

The Northside Chronicle

and 1506 for $227,000. Anne Sweeney to Thomas Yargo at 3605 Shadeland Ave. and Davis Ave. for $200,000. Estate of Catherine Peters to Dawn Smith at 2054 Termon Ave. for $84,900. James Vevers to Tonika Floyd at 3445 Fleming Ave. for $67,000. Brightwood Patricia Mursch to Forsythe Development Trust #1001517 at 1517 Forsythe St. for $7,500. Joseph Stauff to Andrew Hinzman and Gilbert Kowalski at 1316 Gifford St. for $30,000. Jessica Engelhard to David Campbell at 1017 Grand Ave. for $23,800. REO Enterprises LLC to AZCAN RPG LLC at 2339 Atmore St. for $17,261. First Niagara Realty Inc. to Realty

Choice Investments LLC at 3115 Wadlow St. for $5,000. Susan Pavlis et al. to Robert and Patricia Pudis at 3261 Central Ave. for $30,000. Veterans Administration to Ideal Investments LLC at 1211 Dickson St. for $5,000. Home America LLC to Frank Cervone and James Antal at 1224 Woodland Ave. for $14,900. Estate of Anthony Boll to Paul and Roxanne Karcher trustee at 1174 New Hampshire Drive for $65,000. California-Kirkbride US Bank NA trustee to EH Pooled 1112 L.P. at 1312 Stranmore St. for $11,050. Central Northside Penn Pioneer Enterprises LLC to Fortune Foreclosures LLC at 1514 Monterey St. and Alpine Ave. for

April 2013

$29,900. Jennifer Hursh to Todd and Dorna Javadi Palcic at 1314 Arch St. for $425,000. Napoleon Buice et al. to KAG Ltd. 2 LLC at 1412 Sandusky St. for $21,500. David Demko to Stephen Pascal and Christopher Gates at 1313 Boyle St. for $51,000. Charles Street Valley Estate of Alma Jones to Henry Jones Jr. et al. and Christine Burgess at 819 Melrose Ave. for $52,000. East Deutschtown Ruth Dailey to Community Alliance Spring Garden East De at 828 Suismon St. for $1,500. Pittsburgh City to Cornelius Poillon at 848 Concord St. for $1,500.


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Manchester Charles Menzock to Samuel and Debra Patti at 1500 Chateau St. for $135,000. Sterling Long to USAUS LLC at 1419 Sedgwick St. for $17,500. Micah Natale to Nicholas LaBounty at 1328 W. North Ave. for $215,500. Coleman Joyce Jr. to Joseph Badamo at 1446 Columbus Ave. for $1,800. Observatory Hill Sharon Arend to Federal National Mortgage Assn. at 418 Maline St. for $1,744 by sheriff ’s deed. Estate of Dorothy Ann Smith to Federal National Mortgage Assn. at 4034 Perrysville Ave. for $2,610 by sheriff ’s deed. Observatory Hill Sawanya Ashmore to Deutsche Bank National Trust Co. trustee at 3631 Baytree St. for $1,832 by sheriff ’s deed. Estate of Gilbert Luksik to Danuta

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Clonan at 4133 Franklin Road for $32,900. Kathi White to Citimortgage Inc. at 3865 Perrysville Ave. for $1,725 by sheriff ’s deed. Estate of Laverne Paraskos to Darla Tucker at 3744 East St. for $20,000. Ravi Ramamoorthy to Ross Harris Investments LLC at 3943 Perrysville Ave. for $11,000. Perry Hilltop Bank New York Mellon trustee to Eugene Stiers at 308 Elsdon St. for $5,799. Pittsburgh City to Southern Tier Environments for Living In at 2605-2609 Perrysville Ave. for $2,900. Estate of Marian Cardani to Alan Percy at 660 Chester Ave. for $49,000. Christian Fellowship Baptist Church to J Andrew Wolfinger at 2453 Perrysville Ave. for $90,000.

Estate of Ralph Maccall to Gustavo Vazquez at 213 W. Burgess St. for $4,000. Spring Garden Andrew Sulka to Timothy Lee Lynn at 1011 Salter Way for $1 (state deed transfer stamps indicate a value of $10,600). Spring Hill Christian Ambriz to Arthur Mustakas at 28 Solar St. for $13,500. Estate of James Cappello to Sara Daum at 1927 Rockledge St. for $65,000. Housing & Urban Development to Gabriel Antkowski at 1102 High St. for $11,763. Summer Hill Patrizia Pierani to Heath Shaffer at 3533 Sirius St. for $86,250. Brenda Harrison to Oleg Foight at 4512 Cerise St. for $134,050.

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Troy Hill Monica Mars to Christine Lynne LLC at 1351 Herman St. for $27,000. James Harangozo to Federal National Mortgage Assn. at 1107 Brabec St. for $1,709 by sheriff ’s deed. Philip Dacey to Dana Michelle Houston at 1630 Harpster St. for $50,000. Tammy Brink to Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. at 1440 Lowrie St. for $1,740 by sheriff ’s deed. Real Estate Transactions provided by <RealSTATs>. Contact <RealSTATs> at 412-381-3880 or visit www.RealSTATs.net.


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Medium

Sudoku

The Game Page Hard

Last Month’s Puzzle Solutions

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Chronicle Crossword

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School board candidates for District 9 Dr. Lorraine Burton Eberhardt Neighborhood: Summer Hill Occupation: Retired teacher

Carolyn Klug Neighborhood: Brighton Heights Occupation: Retired teacher

I am a life-long resident of the Northside and a product of the PPS. I have also been employed with the PPS District for 31 Years before retirement. During that time I served as an elementary teacher, a middle school emotional support teacher, a math demonstration teacher, a vice principal, a principal, and as executive director for the Division of Instructional Support for the entire district. I currently have four grandchildren who attend PPS.

I have 30+ years of experience working with children. My work experience with children includes working at the Western PA School for Blind Children, Children and Youth Services and the Pittsburgh Public Schools. My understanding of how children learn, how schools run, as well as how school districts operate will enable me to advocate for our children. I also have had a wide range of experience on a number of varied committees give me skills to negotiate and come to a consensus.

I believe that Board Members are accountable to the communities they serve. Therefore I wil work to improve communications between board members, staff, parents and Community by creating opportunities for shared leadership.

My experience on many area committees has given me the opportunity to hone my negotiation skills. Some of the committees I have had the opportunity to sit on are: Pittsburgh Symphonyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Educators Committee, Western Pennsylvania Writing Projects Fellows Council (which I chaired), and Girl Scouts of Southwestern PA Committee for Girls with Special Needs...Learning to listen and to make sure I clearly understand my colleagues has helped me to work with them in accomplishing a common goal.

What strategies would you propose to make Northside schools more competitive and desirable?

The PPS student enrollment is down across the district. With enrollment down, budgets become lacking. Therefore spending must be monitored closely to ensure that only programs which promote student achievement are fostered. In short, the board needs to reidpentify goals and priorities in an effort to repopulate the district which is inclusive of northside schools.

Our magnet programs have been a renowned part of the opportunities offered to our children. We should take a fresh look at these programs and update them. The district needs to continue to offer a wide range of programs to ensure that the children are getting a well rounded education so that they are prepare for the world once they graduate. New families are moving into Pittsburgh and must have innovative school choices. The district needs to strengthen and promote programs at John Morrow and Perry. Reopening Rooney Middle School will show the community a commitment to the education of our children. With a strong school district, we will have a vibrant city that people will want to raise their families.

What will public education look like in 20 years?

I believe that due to technological advances, education will be presented differently, however, the basics will remain the same. Students will still need to master the basics of reading, math and science in order compete in a global society.

The delivery of education continually evolves. Pittsburgh Public Schools will provide a strong foundation for our youngest learners so that when they become graduating seniors, they will be prepared for a diverse world. Children learn in a variety of ways and the district will address those learning styles to maximize learning. The district must offer strong programs at each phase of a childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s educational journey.

Define the role of a School Board Member as you envision it.

As a board member I plan to collaborate with district leadership to oversee school budgets, negotiate collective bargaining agreement and set priorities with regards to important issues as they relate to student achievement.

What experience and skills make you an ideal School Board Member?

What will you do to ensure stronger two-way communication?

The Northside Chronicle Education page is sponsored by:

Board Members should be a conduit between families, the community and the administration. We must come to the table ready to work together to provide the best education for our children. Board members must ensure equity so that no child is ever left behind. They must listen to all voices, not just the loudest so that every idea can be considered as to how/if it would benefit the children.


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April 2013

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In addition to the mayoral primary, residents of District 9, which includes voting districts in Brighton Heights, Observatory Hill and Brightwood, will vote for a new school board member to replace Floyd McCrea on May 21. Questions asked of candidates were composed by the Northside Leadership Conference’s Education Committee. The Committee will have a candidates night on Thursday April 25, where they will be available to answer more questions.

Dave Schuilenburg Neighborhood: Summer Hill Occupation: 9-1-1 Officer & Trainer A parent of 2 Pittsburgh elementary school aged children (ages 9 & 6), I am also an executive member of their school’s Parent Community Organization (equivalent to a PTA), and a member of the school’s task force on bullying & discipline. I am also the executive director of a non-profit organization which emphasizes the involvement of both parents in the daily lives of their children, including schooling, regardless of marriage. And as a community leader, not only do I assist national non-profit ‘KaBoom!’ annually in building playgrounds locally so our children have a safe place to play, but I have shown success in being resourceful, including in securing local, state, & federal funding to provide after-school activities for North Side youths. As such, the skills and attributes required to fulfill all these roles make my candidacy uniquely qualified from the other candidates to fulfill the role of an objective and independent school board director, and as public safety officer, I bring a pendent for safer learning environments to the board. It is my belief that part of the reason communication has been an issue, be it between board members or with the community, is due to lack independence of the board from the district Administration. School board directors exist not only to represent the interests of voters, but also to legislatively act as an independent ‘checks & balances’ mechanism where it regards the decisions the Administration makes, much like the separation that exists between the mayor’s office & city council. The other part of the issue is that often times the board has made decisions with inaccurate or no information whatsoever, and they have not properly held the Administration accountable in providing such. Transparency in government has always been something I have fought for, including as a founding member of the ‘PA Freedom of Information Coalition’ online community, and should I be elected, I would lead governance of the board in a more transparent & object manner, including: • Maintaining a separate website dedicated to the affairs of the board of directors. • I would submit to holding all meetings in larger rooms. • I would mandate that committee meetings, including the all important Education Committee, be recorded and make those recordings available to the public on the Board’s website, where the public would benefit from watching.

• I would ensure that meeting agendas are posted in advance & minutes are posted in a timely manner shortly after meetings; • I would demand that accurate data & research be presented before making decisions of major importance, including in the areas of school closures & asset sales; • I would move the monthly public hearings out of the South Bellefield Avenue building & hold

them in a different district school auditorium each month; • In particular to the District 9, I would hold 1 Northside-wide & 1 West End-Wide PSCC meeting per school year so as to report back to parents & education professionals on a more frequent basis, and so as to get parents to become more actively involved in their children’s futures .

Research data has shown that the largest challenges schools across the Northside have experienced have been in the areas of resource allocation, support services, safety, parental involvement, and district representation. As such, I would support policies that: • Ensure great teachers are placed in every class- school need, giving priority to our most vulnerthat prioritizes resources to our most vulnerable room, and given the resources & support they able students, recognizing inequities that exist students & teachers in need; need. for low-income and communities of color and • Reinforce positive behavioral support programs, • Help create the best learning environment for dedicating resources to eliminate them; such as school discipline reform that halts the use our children by attracting and retaining excellent • Guarantees all students have access to opportu- of out-of-school suspensions and expulsions. teachers, by supporting their work with enhanced nities and programs that boost learning and posi- • Make schools safe and welcoming, including meaningful development and adequate resources, tion students for success, and ensure consistent making local schools hubs of community life. and rewarding those who meet AND exceed goal services are provided that unlock the potential of • Increase opportunities to proactively and con& standards; individual students; tinuously meet with district educators, families, • Perform school-by-school assessments and • Promote a working relationship with the suchildren. redistributes resources according to student and perintendent and staff to craft an annual budget The key to assuring that public education exists in 20 years from now lies squarely in Harrisburg. The state Constitution mandates that “The General Assembly shall provide for the maintenance and support of a thorough and efficient system of public education to serve the needs of the Commonwealth”, however the truth of the matter is that not only have they failed in meeting this clear mandate, but public education in Pennsylvania has fallen victim to a national trend of wealthy lobbyists seeking to do away with quality public education. We have seen this battle in North Carolina, Chicago, and even in Philadelphia, where those who wish seek to make a profit from public education have pillaged public funding & resources we need in order to properly educate our youth. It is imperative our elected leaders in Harrisburg stem this hemorrhaging, and properly “support” public education with a dedicated source of funding, and not hold public education hostage to partisan state budget schemes. Some of the ways in which we can accomplish this include by taxing the Marcellus Shale industry, by closing the “Delaware Loophole” (which allows big corporations to avoid paying taxes on their revenues), and by ensuring all businesses pay their taxes, including non-profits who fail to meet state standards which define what a ‘not for profit’ entity truly is. In the end, the future of public education will depend on how it is funded, and without a reliable source of dedicated funding at the state level, public education risks not only being diminished, but dismantled within 20 years. If elected, not only will I pursue a policy of responsible & transparent governance locally, but I will help lead the charge at the state & federal level to assure that public education exists in the future for our children & their children. School directors are elected by the people to be their independent collective voice towards district Administration policy, and as such, they must act & administer with the people’s will as their guiding creed. They also need to be in tune with the needs of all those involved in educating the children of their districts, and should openly solicit the opinions of all, including teachers, administrators, PTA/PTO/PCO members, & of course, parents, in order to find & push for solutions that are community driven, and not the product of ‘for profit’ entities. Finally, directors should play an active role in acknowledging those in their district who meet & exceed goals, including not only teachers, but students as well! We must be our children’s biggest advocate & cheerleaders, both in finding funding & solutions to the problems they encounter, and in acknowledging them when they succeed.



2013 April