Submitted by Annette Trunzo
It’s time to start planning for the 2019 Tour & Tasting Event!
Yay – the Polar Vortex is over and Punxsutawney Phil says spring is right around the corner, so it must be time to start planning for the 2019 Allegheny West Wine Tour! The dates are set, Friday June 21st and Saturday June 22nd. The approach is going to be a little bit different this year. Pittsburgh has been recognized nationally and internationally as a destination for foodies. To capitalize on that and draw more awareness to the tour and Allegheny West, the tour committee is going to solicit restaurants to participate and present their food and suggested wine pairing at the homes. I’m excited to share that we’ve already been successful in raising strong interest from several restaurants.
In the short term what is needed are homes! If you are interested in having your house on the wine tour this year, have any questions, or want to know how you can help please contact me Annette Trunzo at
email@example.com. I’m really excited about the tour this year and to network with restaurants about the event. Please check the Gazette and weekly e-newsletter for updates about the tour and tour meetings. Cheers!
Ride with the King: Black History Tour
January 19, 2019
9:00 am – 2:30 pm
Doors Open Pittsburgh is providing access to three prominent African American churches in Pittsburgh, as well as to the August Wilson Center and Dollar Bank Heritage Center in Downtown Pittsburgh, during a special tour on Saturday, January 19th.
Participants will be able to tour the three churches on their own – or register for a bus tour that will take participants to all the sites. The churches are located in East Liberty, Uptown, and Central Northside.
Volunteer help is needed too!
Allegheny County’s Point in Time Survey
On January 30th, January 31st and February 3rd from 6:00-8:00 pm we will be canvassing the neighborhoods of the Northside to encounter and ‘count’ as many people as we can who are sleeping outside. Having the most accurate number will help increase access to funding to provide more housing options for those individuals experiencing homelessness. What we need from you is to know of any homeless encampments in your neighborhoods that we can make sure to visit and engage on those nights. Please email me with details and we will check them out and engage those spaces.
Northside Clean Up
On February 16th, we will be bringing close to 60 volunteers to do some clean ups of camps on the Northside. If you have areas that are in great need, please let us know. It is best to service areas that are in close proximity since we will be getting a dumpster. At our typical cleanups, we remove around 200 bags of trash.
Forum on Homelessness
On February 23rd, we will hold a local forum on homelessness at 9:00 am. This will be time for you as a neighbor and community partner to hear and discuss some issues regarding homelessness on the Northside including panhandlers, housing programs, shelter rules, Allegheny LINK, organizational programming and more. If you are interested in attending this free event, please let me know. Breakfast will be served and the event should last about 2 hours.
Thanks for your time!
Charles Chapman – LIVING Ministry
Submitted by Carol Gomrick
The chill in the air did not deter guests from attending nor their spirit during the 2018 Christmas Tour. This year was a tremendous success. We sold over 1,500 tour tickets and over 300 train tour tickets. The tour boasted a special treat for several groups Saturday afternoon when the president of CCAC, Dr. Quintin B. Bullock, came into his office and allowed guests to view the grandeur of the Byers wing of Byers Hall. Quite often guests shared how excited they were about the homes on the tour and what a great experience they had visiting our neighborhood. The showing of Byers Hall made real for so many the history they hear on the tour about the once magnificent Millionaires’ Row and a greater appreciation of how important is is to not lose any more of our history.
As many know as recently as mid-November, we were a few homes shy and running out of options. Once again the neighborhood came together to bring Christmas early to so many. I really need to express a special thanks to the homeowners who are the the real heroes. The Moore and Beer families, the Malakoffs, Hal and Nick, and of course John DeSantis – thank you for your hard work and welcoming so many people (and a dog) into your homes! Special thanks to Amelia Beer. Several tour groups were treated to and impressed by Amelia’s violin playing.
The tour guides were incredible again this year! So many guests shared with me how knowledgeable and engaging or guides were this year. I received a special email from one attendee “Sally”. She was so impressed with Thomas Huygens she just had to share her impression – “Outstanding 2018 tour … Our guide a young man named Thomas was absolutely fabulous. He was very conscientious about all aspects of the tours … thank you for making our 11th tour one of the best ever!” High praise indeed especially for a veteran tour guest like Sally and knowing the bar is high with all of the other tremendous docents!
Thank you to Rev Larry, Martin, and Doug for all of their efforts at Calvary. It makes such a difference to have such a welcoming place to greet the guests!
This is my last tour as Ways and Means chair. The baton is being handed over to the capable hands of Annette Trunzo. So many of you have been incredibly generous with your time and support over the past two years, there are no words to express my heartfelt thanks. The tours with all of their twists and turns never fail to remind me of how blessed I am to be a part of such a wonderful community and though my term as Ways and Means has come to an end, I look forward to staying involved with the tours in 2019.
Happy New Year to you all and congratulations on completing another successful tour season!
Submitted by Trish Burton
Thanks to Diane and Tony Caruso and to Carol Gomrick for helping me last Saturday to pull out the parklet annuals and prepare the garden for next spring’s planting. Hot coffee from Mayfly Market on Arch Street helped us battle the cold and rain!
A special thanks to Tony Caruso for all of the help he’s provided this year to beautify Western Avenue: digging up and transplanting shrubs and grasses; wrestling with broken hoses; hauling and spreading many bags of mulch; bagging huge amounts of debris — and remembering to drag those bags to the curb on Sunday nights for trash collection!
And we can’t forget the constant care that Dr. Dan provides each week so that we have much less litter on all of our streets. Thank you, Dan!
Looking forward to seeing you all in the spring when we begin work again on the neighborhood green spaces.
Submitted by Carol Gomrick
Save the Date!
The annual AWCC Christmas Tour will be held on December 7th and 8th. Please consider putting your home on the tour – we are still in need of two houses. If you’re willing and able, kindly contact Carol Gomrick at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Important Dates Leading into the 2018 Tour
Wednesday November 14th | 7:00 pm
Christmas Tour General Meeting | 940 W North Avenue
Saturday, December 1st | 9:00 am
Swag bundling / Hanging | Cathy Serventi & Gene Wilson’s house at 851 Beech Avenue
(Enter via Dounton Way.)
Friday, December 7th and Saturday, December 8th
Beech Avenue will be closed during the tour. Residents can park at the lower Babb, Inc. Parking lot starting at 4:00 pm for off-street parking.
Doug Sprague is leading the charge to sign up tour guides. Please reach out to Doug (email@example.com) with questions. Please consider signing up for a shift (or three)!
We are in need of train volunteers for Friday, December 7th and Saturday, December 8th. If interested, please contact Cecile Canales (firstname.lastname@example.org) or sign up at http://goo.gl/M5A4Km
Help with crowd and tour control. Contact Brandon Williams: email@example.com
Deliver meals and assist homeowners with any needs. (Contact Carol)
Set up and take down luminaria at the homes that are on tour. (Contact Carol)
Submitted by Carol Gomrick
Sincerest thanks and gratitude on behalf of Allegheny West Civic Council and Deb Mortillaro of Dreadnought Wine for all who shared a wonderful celebration of Eberle wines in the magnificent Holmes Hall on September 15th.
If you would like a chance to Meet Gary Eberle in person, he will be in Pittsburgh for a dinner at The Carlton on October 23rd (The Carlto: 412-391-4099). Contact The Carlton directly to make reservations. Dreadnought will also be having a casual meet and greet with Gary during his October visit so watch for this on the Palate Partners class schedule calendar: palatepartners.com.
Submitted by Cecile Canales, co-chair
Many, many thanks go out to all the home owners, cars owners, and volunteers who helped make this year’s Alleys, Axles, and Ales Tour a wonderful success. A very special thanks goes to Greg Coll, our AW neighbor of the year, who with many revisions and drafts, created magnificent, colorful posters, ticket booklets, the program and lanyard hot passes. He is most reliable and a tremendous help to everyone.
- Thank you goes to Tom Barbush, Co-Chair, and to our committee members who suggested great ideas and dealt with many decisions. It was a pleasure to work with Carl Canales, Tom Cihil, Doug Debelak, John Engle, Carol Gomrick ,Thomas Huygens, Lindsy McDonald, Mitchell Schwartz, Cathy Serventi, Abi Webb. Thank you to car owners and homeowners not listed above: Tom Armstrong, Dan Barbus, Kelly Brown, Eleanor Colema, John DeSantis, Armand Englebrecht, Linda and Roy Englebrecht, Tim Hudson, Rob Johnson, Kevin Luffy, Ashley Webb, Chris and Mike Zappa.
- Thank you to Jake Bier and Abbey Surrena, of Bier’s Pub, and Nate and Katie LaValla, of Bear Dog Bike, for hosting a Beer Stop at their establishments and their financial support.
- Thanks to out-of-state displays from Michael Skellie, and his father, Dave Skellie, who traveled from Delaware bringing their DeLorean and their brand new Model 3 Tesla; Stephen Bell, of Classic Investments, a financial supporter, who traveled from Denver, CO; Dennis and Peggy Gilligan, car owners, who trailored their 1967 XKE Jaguar from Maryland, and other car owners who brought cars from central PA, Ohio, New York and Florida.
- Thanks to A&L Motors for bringing an F-Pace Jaguar, to Hagerty Insurance, a financial supporter who displayed at their tent, and to Bryan Williams, chief judge, and organizer of the Jaguar Concours Cars.
- And a special thanks to Dan Hermann, Zone 4 Chief Command Officer, who helped secure permits to close and barricade Brighton Road and a Jaguar owner.
- Thanks to our financial sponsors: Babb, Inc., Bellevue House Tour, Gallery H, Giorgio’s, Greg Coll Creative, LeClaire Griewahn & Scott, Coldwell Banker Realtor Susan Meadowcroft, The Modern Cafe, Penn Brewery, SMARTSolution Technologies, Daniel Strinkoski DDS and YMCA.
- Thanks to our own Northside food truck, Newman and Marley, whose delicious hotdogs and sausages fed the volunteers and tour goers.
- Thank you to Dr. Dan for cleaning up leaves and debris before the tour.
Thanks to our ticket collectors, MaryAnne Murphy and Cathy Serventi. Cathy and Dan Adam also helped with online tour info, Showclix, permits and expense reports.
- Thanks to the many volunteers Elizabeth Barbush, Carolyn Graham, Sally Graubarth, Bob Knaus, Scott and Hilary Moser, MaryAnne Murphy, Diana Poliziani, Michael Shealy, Doris Short, John from N. Lincoln who carried heavy buckets of signs, and my special assistant for the day, Tony Caruso.
- Thanks to our party organizers who at the end of the day served Chile and Cornbread in the Paddock to our weary volunteers: Fran Barbush, Trish Burton, Mary Callison, Diane Caruso, Nonie Knaus and Abi Webb.
- My biggest thanks go to my husband, Carl Canales, who weathered the past 2 weeks of my insanity.
Proceeds will go to Allegheny YMCA Northside Summer Camp and the Allegheny Commons Park Renovation Project.
The Allegheny West Christmas House Tour is December 7th-8th, 2018. John DeSantis has a magnificent collection of the prewar Standard and Wide gauge trains and will open his collection for tours.
I am beginning to schedule volunteers now for the trains. Are you interested this year? We need approximately 8 people on each shift, as in the past. We close early on Saturday so that guides will be able to go to the neighborhood party which begins at 9:00 pm this year. There are no train tours scheduled after the 6:00 pm tour group on Saturday.
John also has a walkthrough prior during the week of the tour. Please take advantage of this opportunity to view his collection and help AWCC with the train tours. To volunteer, please contact Cecile Canales at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
Save the Date! – The annual AWCC Christmas Tour will be held on December 7th and 8th. If you are interested in having your house on the tour, please contact Carol Gomrick at email@example.com.
Important Dates Leading into the 2018 Tour
Wednesday October 10th at 7:00 pm: Christmas Tour General Meeting | 940 W North Avenue
Wednesday November 7th at 7:30 pm: Christmas Tour Mailer Labeling | Calvary Church