806 Western Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15233

Friends of Allegheny West Committee

Submitted by Diane Caruso

Our neighborhood parklet continues to grow and improve with the help of a few neighbors and Babb Insurance company’s annual volunteer day. We will soon begin our monthly clean-ups along Western Avenue, as well as weeding and working in the parklet this spring. Please watch for notices in our e-newsletter for our first clean-up. Clean-ups always take place on Saturday mornings at 9:00 am, and fresh donuts are supplied!

Last year we added a brick walkway to the parklet with donated bricks from neighbors. This year, we plan on placing a beautiful metal sign in the garden, with another sign being placed at the corner of Allegheny and Western Avenues. We have a sign committee that has been working on the design of these signs. The signs will read “Allegheny West National Historic District.” We love our neighborhood and we need and appreciate your help in continuing to beautify our exceptional and unique community.

Neighborhood Tree Project

Submitted by Mary Callison

Plans are underway for planting trees in our neighborhood this Fall.  We will be working with Tree Vitalize and the City Forester Lisa Ceoffe on this project. In 2016, a Neighborhood Rejuvenation Plan was developed by Pashek Associates in response to issues voiced by the neighborhood. One concern voiced was the condition of our trees. I am using the section on trees in this report as a guide for this project.   

Neighbors have volunteered to help contact property owners to explain the plan and ask them to fill out the application for a tree in front of their property. If you would like to help with this part of the project or later in the Fall with the planting, contact me at (412) 323-5951 or email The deadline for submitting a request for the 2020 Fall Planting is March 13th at 4:00 pm.

It’s not too late to sign up for the Tree Tender Training on February 22nd, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm. Contact or call (412) 781-8733 x 204. You need to pre-register for the class. Call me if you have difficulty registering.

From the Membership Committee

Bowling has begun. 🎳 It takes place at the Elks Lodge on Wednesdays at 7:00 pm. It’s a bargain at $2.50/game, and that includes bowling ball and shoes. Food and beverages are of course available, also at prices not seen at many establishments! Hope to see you this winter on Wednesdays at the Elks Lodge, 400 Cedar Avenue.

Also, we had our first Allegheny West Mixer of 2020 on January 24th, and it was a success. Keep an eye out for news about upcoming mixers on the Allegheny West Facebook page!

The First Pittsburgh Symphony @ Alphabet City Concert in 2020!

City of Asylum Banner (2019)

The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra Presents


with Ray Chen

Thursday, February 13th
7:00 pm

Ray Chen is a violinist who redefines what it is to be a classical musician in the 21st Century. He has millions of on-line followers through his social media initiatives “In the Mind of Ray” and “Play with Ray”. His appearances and interactions with music and musicians are disseminated to a new public in contemporary and relatable ways. Hear how Ray Chen inspires and connects individuals through music, technology, and humor.

Pittsburgh Symphony + City of Asylum

PSO Conductor Earl Lee joins Ray in an evening exploring real and virtual “connections.”

Poets Melissa Dias-Mandoly and Keith S. Wilson will also read their work.

Reserve Your Free Tickets

Applications are Now Open for the Spring 2020 Civic Leadership Academy!

CLA encourages more informed, effective and inspired community and civic leadership by giving adult City residents an opportunity to learn about their local government.

CLA is a free, 11-week course on Wednesdays from 6:00 to 8:30 pm, running March 25, 2020 – June 10, 2020 (no class on April 8th in observance of Passover). Applications are due Sunday, March 1st at midnight.

Learn more:

Questions? Contact Leah at or call the Office of Community Affairs at (412) 255-4773.

Amendment to the Allegheny West Civic Council Bylaws

Submitted by AWCC Bylaws Committee

Change Article VII Section 6, adding the text in bold, to

  1. Standing committee Chairman shall select from between two and ten members for their committees within 45 days following their election. No member of Council may chair more than one standing committee at a time. No officer may chair any standing committee except for the Corresponding Secretary who is ex-officio chair of the Communications Committee. All standing committees except for the Executive Committee are open to everyone to participate in discussion and all Civic Council members in good standing present are eligible to vote on any motion from the committee.

This amendment was presented in writing at the January 2020 membership meeting and will be published in the Allegheny West Gazette and voted on at the February meeting. If approved by two thirds of the members present will take effect immediately.

Corresponding Secretary is still an officer of the Council and is directed to be chair of the Communications Committee.

Historically, all committees except for the Executive Committee have been open to everyone.


Cyborg Coven, Queer Theatre


Part of the Community Supported Art Performance Series
February 6-7 | 8PM

Somewhere in the dark, a cyborg coven is performing a ritual for the future of humankind. Using movement, found text, and machine learning algorithms, they summon the Salem witch panic out of America’s colonial shadows. Featuring an all-queer ensemble, TERMINER shines a light on contemporary systems of power, and casts a spell of resistance and repair.

Philip Wesley Gates is a non-binary director, performance maker and writer/scholar currently based in Pittsburgh. Their work draws awareness to the theatre as a collective experience, and to the web of relations between bodies, histories,and actions. Philip holds an MFA in Directing from Carnegie Mellon University.

You’re Invited

Northside residents and workers are invited to attend this performance for free. A limited number of tickets are available online, so reserve your seat today. Tickets are available for both Thursday and Friday performances. Use promo code:


Reserve Your Seats

Pittsburgh’s Top Songwriting Talent

City of Asylum Banner (2019)

Songwriters in the Round

Sunday, January 26th
6:00 pm

Have you ever wondered what it takes to write a new song? Ever been curious about the stories that inspire musicians to pluck a new chord or pen a new lyric?

In this acoustic concert, four songwriters take turns showcasing original songs and sharing the stories behind how they were written. This is an evening to support local musicians and experience the process of composing and workshopping new songs. It’s open to budding songwriters and music enthusiasts alike.

Presented in cooperation with the Pittsburgh chapter of the Nashville Songwriters Association International.

Reserve Your Free Tickets

Letter from the President – January 2020

Happy New Year 2020!

20/20: denoting vision of normal sharpness
20/20 Hindsight: the full knowledge and complete understanding that one has about an event only after it has happened

Congratulations and thank you to everyone who contributed to a successful Christmas House Tour and, like always, it seems like everyone contributed. A special thank you to Annette Trunzo and Carol Gomrick they both worked very hard to manage all the pieces of the tour puzzle. They assembled a great team. If you volunteered or went on the tour, you saw the results of everyone’s hard work. We’ll get a breakdown of the financial results of the tour at the membership meeting this month.

Another item on the agenda at this month’s membership meeting is a presentation from Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy on the Allegheny Commons North Promenade Project. PPC will be asking for a Letter of Support for the Historic Review Commission, which will require membership approval.

Andrew Reichert will also be attending the membership meeting to provide an update on the Stables Building development project.

It is heartening to see that the number of people attending the General Membership meetings increased month-to-month last year, particularly in December. In 2019 we had a surge of new members, also mostly occurring towards the end of the year. An interesting and positive twist – many new members are neighborhood businesses.

It will be challenging to keep the enthusiasm level as high as it was at the end of last year but I’m hopeful we can. I look forward to seeing new members and members who started attending meetings again continue to stay involved this year. There is a lot going on in our officially smallest neighborhood in Pittsburgh.

AWCC currently has 4 standing and 2 ad hoc committees, listed with their chairs below:

  • Property: Michael Shealey
  • Housing & Planning: Robin Zoufalik
  • Ways & Means: John DeSantis
  • Friends of Allegheny West: Diane Caruso
  • By-Laws (ad hoc): Bob Malakoff
  • WANID (ad hoc): Ann Gilligan

The Committee Chairs will be writing brief columns to appear in this and subsequent Gazettes to describe what they are doing, who they’d like to have on their committees and how to join. I encourage all members, long-time and newly joined, to volunteer on one of these committees.

Do you see a need for neighborhood volunteer work that doesn’t fit one of the current committees? Let me know how you want to contribute and I promise I’ll do whatever I can to help make it happen!

Wishing everyone health, peace and prosperity in the New Year.

Ann Gilligan
President, AWCC