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Rockin’ Wine and Beer Festival features Smokey Robinson Wines

Mention the name Smokey Robinson and some of the singer-songwriter’s best-known song titles come to mind, including Motown hits when he was with The Miracles, such as “The Tracks of My Tears” and “I Second that Emotion,” and songs he wrote for several other artists, including “My Girl” for The Temptations.

Lately, Smokey Robinson’s name is linked to some of the most popular labels in his family of vintage wines, including his “My Girl” Chardonnay, “Being with You” Pinot Noir and “Crusin’ Bordeaux Blend.”

Robinson, who performed in concert last August at Greensburg’s Palace Theatre, also was in Pittsburgh back then to officially launch his new line of wines with Lawrenceville-based EngineHouse 25 Wines, unveiling his Smokey Robinson Cabernet and Smokey Robinson Riesling.

A year later, he recently said from his home in Los Angeles about his latest business venture, “It’s going over well and people are loving it; I’m so proud of it.”

Vintage Smokey Robinson

The song stylist and composer – who still recalls his first appearance in Western Pennsylvania with the Miracles at the former White Elephant nightclub in White Oak with legendary DJ, the late Porky Chedwick – will have some of his Smokey Robinson Wines at the 7th annual Rockin’ Wine and Beer Festival on June 1 at the Monroeville Convention Center.

He’s unable to be in town for the event, but his friends and business partners, financial adviser Bob Buzzelli and attorney Louis Caputo of Pittsburgh, will be there, sampling and selling some of their wines from Napa Valley and Sonoma Valley in California and Abruzzo, Italy.

Caputo said their “My Girl” Chardonnay and Smokey Robinson Riesling from California and their Rosé and Montepulciano Red from Abruzzo, Italy, will be available for sale by bottle or glass at the festival.

“Our ‘My Girl Red Blend’ was just released at a wine festival in Santa Monica to very positive reviews and will be available to the public over the summer,” he said. “We will be bringing back our ‘Being with You’ Pinot Noir from California in the fall.”

Robinson wanted his fans to know that he’s been in the recording studio the past few months and will be releasing new music soon. He and his wife have a home in Gibsonia and he was in town recently to work on some events planned later this summer.

Signed guitar collector

Also on hand at the Rockin’ Wine and Beer Festival will be Bill Bendel of White Oak, a retired nurse with a hobby of collecting autographed guitars that he gets signed by performers at concerts. He will have nearly a dozen guitars on display or for sale, with signatures of Brad Paisley, Huey Lewis, Willie Nelson and more. His Rick Springfield-signed guitar will be a door prize item.

Bendel finds guitars at estate sales and auctions and brings them with him when he attends concerts at the Palace Theatre, Carnegie of Homestead Music Hall and other venues. The most valuable signed guitar in his collection – one that he’s not looking to sell – features signatures of 30 country stars, including Kenny Chesney, Trisha Yearwood and Tim McGraw.

Other festival features

The Rockin’ Wine and Beer Festival, produced by Kelly Simon Event Management, will feature 100 wines and 100 craft, specialty and domestic beers, gourmet chefs and food vendors, games and activities, including cornhole and Jenga, and Readings by Ronda, a psychic medium.

Live music will be by The Second Wind Band playing classic and Southern rock during the 1-5 p.m. session, and Bon Journey, a Bon Jovi and Journey tribute band, from 6-10 p.m.

Festival admission includes a souvenir wine or beer glass and wine and beer samples. Door prizes will include a signed Rick Springfield guitar and a Smokey Robinson Wines basket. The festival is open to ages 21 or older.

Candy Williams is a Tribune-Review contributing writer.

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Monroeville business park, county courthouse to be filmed for ‘Manhunt’

Written by Dillon Carr from the Tribune-Review

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Monroeville is getting back into show biz.

But this time, instead of filming zombies at the sprawling Monroeville Mall, a site on the 172-acre Tech One Business Park will be transformed into a scene from “Manhunt: Lone Wolf,” the second season of an American true-crime miniseries.

Pittsburgh Film Office Director Dawn Keezer confirmed the site is one of many in the region to be used for filming from June through November.

The production team also plans to film scenes in and around the Allegheny County Courthouse, according to legislation before county council, which meets for a vote May 7.

The casting call will be held at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 11.

County spokeswoman Amie Downs declined to comment further on the production team’s plans because council members have not had the chance to discuss it publicly. She did say, however, the courthouse would not close during filming.

“Manhunt” opened a production office in Pittsburgh in March.

The production team received a one-year permit from Monroeville on April 25. It gives Manhunt Production Inc. “permission to create a replica setup of a concert festival grounds.”

The Manhunt series aired on Discovery Channel in the summer of 2017 and the first season, “Manhunt: Unabomber,” was the true story of Unabomber Ted Kaczynski, who between 1978 and 1995 killed three people and injured 23 others in order to start an anarchy revolution.

He pleaded guilty in 1998 and is currently serving a life-sentence without parole.

Deadline.com reported last year that season two will focus on Richard Jewell, a security guard who was first praised for his quick action and then accused of a bombing at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta. Eventually, Jewell was exonerated fully when Eric Rudolph was convicted of that crime.

A spokesperson for Lionsgate did not immediately return an email to confirm season two’s plot.

Dillon Carr is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Dillon at 412-871-2325, dcarr@tribweb.com or via Twitter .

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WHAT’S DRIVING #1 COCHRAN

From PITTSBURGH BUSINESS TIMES

Here’s what you need to know about the president and CEO of the region’s largest car dealership: “I’m not really a car buff.”

More given to cracking open a book than popping a hood, if you ask Rob Cochran about his first car — just about anyone can rattle off the model, year and color — he doesn’t have a specific answer. 

“It was merchandise,” he said, recalling the early days of growing up in the car business started by his late father. “I remember my father saying, ‘We don’t fall in love with the cars.’”

Rather, what drew him to join his father’s company in 1987, five days after he graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with degrees in applied mathematics and industrial management, was that the business was changing. 

And change it has: In the past two years alone, the region has seen many of its family-owned dealerships, facing the baby boomer retirement dilemma, snapped up by massive national players who are buying into the Pittsburgh region.

But not #1 Cochran, which has not only been holding its own, but also acquiring new vehicle franchises and successfully competing head-to-head with the incoming national players. The company has grown to become the 11th-largest private firm in the Pittsburgh region, growing its revenue 23.3 percent between 2017 and 2018.

Cochran’s clear on where he’s driving his business, whose 2018 sales of $838.8 million accounted for 8 percent of the $10.6 billion collectively posted by the members of the Greater Pittsburgh Automobile Dealers Association.

“It’s always been part of who we are as a company to assume a leadership role of this industry in this region,” Cochran said. “We like that expectation of ourselves. That pushes us.”

A fast-track to growth

The story of #1 Cochran starts with the Pontiac dealership Bob Cochran, Rob Cochran’s father, opened in North Braddock in 1965, a year before Rob Cochran was born. 

Bob Cochran, Rob Cochran’s father, opened up a Pontiac dealership in North Braddock in 1965, the year before Rob was born. The company has since grown to encompass 29 vehicle franchises.

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Bob Cochran, Rob Cochran’s father, opened up a Pontiac dealership in North Braddock in 1965, the year before Rob was born. The company has since grown to encompass 29 vehicle franchises.

#1 COCHRAN

The younger Cochran joined the business in 1987, then just two dealerships, the same year his father christened it “#1 Cochran.” They formed a close-knit and formidable team. In 1989, the company was named the top Pontiac Retail Sales Dealership in the world. 

But the time father and son worked together was cut short. Rob Cochran was named president and CEO in 1992 as Bob Cochran battled cancer, succumbing in December 1993.

Since then, Rob Cochran has built the company steadily. Today, #1 Cochran encompasses just shy of 30 new vehicle franchises, and its dealerships are dotted along many of the region’s major roadways.

The Monroeville headquarters of #1 Cochran, established in 2003, is almost a city-state in and of itself, with massive showrooms, each surrounded by lots. And since 2012, the company’s pace for buying has been steady. Starting with the purchase of Charapp Automotive in Natrona Heights, #1 Cochran has notched seven deals that have spread its geographic reach into Washington, Westmoreland and Butler counties, “the outer rim of the metro,” Cochran said.

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The growth hasn’t gone unnoticed outside Pittsburgh. When industry trade publication Automotive News released its ranking of the top 150 U.S. dealership groups on March 25, #1 Cochran was No. 71, up 22 spots, the biggest gain on the list. The company increased new vehicle sales in 2018 by 31 percent, nearly 3,300 additional vehicles.

Last October, #1 Cochran opened a four-story Audi store in the Strip District, which doesn’t seem all that remarkable to the casual passerby. But behind the scenes, it truly was a big deal, culminating a process that started in 2015 when Audi of America decided to award an “open point,” which is auto speak for a location where a manufacturer would like to have a store.

The service entrance of the Audi Pittsburgh dealership, located in the 2000 block of Liberty Avenue in the Strip District. #1 Cochran competed against 30 other groups before it was selected by Audi to open the four-story Audi store.

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The service entrance of the Audi Pittsburgh dealership, located in the 2000 block of Liberty Avenue in the Strip District. #1 Cochran competed against 30 other groups before it was selected by Audi to open the four-story Audi store.

JOE WOJCIK

Such opportunities are rare, so it triggered frenzied activity as Audi took a year to make its selection.

“We competed against 30 other groups, most from out-of-town,” Cochran said. “We had going for us our track record in western Pennsylvania. And manufacturers like us.”

Cochran steered Audi to the Strip, a hot area for development within the city that’s also accessible and convenient to customers in upscale neighborhoods. Billed differently from his other stores, the dealership is known as “Audi Pittsburgh, A #1 Cochran Premier Brand.” 

Manufacturers’ input has become increasingly crucial. And #1 Cochran was uniquely positioned to capitalize.

Kevin Tynan, a Bloomberg Intelligence senior industry analyst who tracks the automobile sector, wasn’t surprised that Audi chose #1 Cochran.

“There’s a reasonable advantage to going with the incumbent in the market,” he said. “It’s mom-and-pop versus the impersonal volume-factory big-box store. They see the benefit of dealing with a name the local community knows.”

Looking out for #1

The Audi bidding war occurred just ahead of another, much larger game-changer for local auto dealers — the entry of big players into the Pittsburgh market.

Just two years ago, southwestern Pennsylvania was untouched by a massive national trend of public companies, conglomerates and private equity firms snapping up family-owned dealerships. That changed in May 2017, when Medford, Oregon-based Lithia Motors Inc. bought Cranberry-based Baierl Automotive Group. Two months later, most of Kenny Ross Automotive Group was acquired by GPB Capital Holdings LLC, a New York-based private equity firm, and then in early 2018, Lithia bought most of Day Automotive.

In the car world, transactions aren’t just between buyer and seller. Manufacturers call the shots, and they determine who’ll get a dealership. They must approve any sales and can exercise the right of first refusal.

 “(Dealers) do as they’re told,” said John Putzier, CEO of the Greater Pittsburgh Automobile Dealers Association, which represents 150 new car and truck dealerships in 11 western Pennsylvania counties. “You can have facilities less than a year old, and (manufacturers) want you to completely modernize. Manufacturers dangle carrots on sticks over the dealer’s head. They’re not the ones spending the money for the Italian marble and all the things they think are necessary to sell a car. Dealers won’t say this, but I will.”

The costs and frustrations have prompted some dealers to sell, Putzier said. The other big deal driver is succession, a huge factor in Pittsburgh as baby boomers, mostly second-generation owners, look to exit and their children aren’t interested. 

“I don’t think we’ve seen the end of (consolidation),” Putzier said.

#1 Cochran has bucked the trend, continuing to acquire even from the national players themselves. In February, GPB sold two Kenny Ross dealerships in Zelienople and Cranberry to #1 Cochran.

The two Kenny Ross stores were swiftly rebranded “#1 Cochran Chevrolet” and “#1 Cochran Nissan Cranberry.” The deal marked the company’s first-ever Chevy store; included a collision center, now the eighth Body by Cochran Collision/Customization location; and took #1 Cochran’s employment to 1,250. (The body work component is of growing importance as owners seek to diversify their revenue base.)

“This particular opportunity in large part was facilitated by the automobile manufacturers, Nissan and GM,” Cochran said. “A lot of ways we find opportunities is because of the great relationships and track records we have with the manufacturers. Locally and regionally, we’ve turned into the first call for people who are thinking it’s time to exit or have a group of stores that aren’t fitting what they’re trying to do.”

It comes down to relationships, Cochran believes, “knowing the people we’ve done business with in the past who feel they’ve been treated fairly and that we’re easy to deal with.”

Rob Cochran stands in his latest car dealership, Audi Pittsburgh, located in the 2000 block of Liberty Avenue in the Strip District. Finding opportunities for growth comes down to relationships, Cochran said, "knowing the people we've done business with in the past who feel they've been treated fairly and that we're easy to deal with."

Enlarge

Rob Cochran stands in his latest car dealership, Audi Pittsburgh, located in the 2000 block of Liberty Avenue in the Strip District. Finding opportunities for growth comes down to relationships, Cochran said, “knowing the people we’ve done business with in the past who feel they’ve been treated… more

JOE WOJCIK

It also doesn’t hurt that #1 Cochran has momentum and size, which has fended off potential offers. Cochran said he’s never been approached by a suitor.

Going forward, how the outside buyers with deep pockets will impact Pittsburgh’s car sector is anyone’s guess.

“Right now, it’s a litmus test,” Cochran said. 

But Putzier believes #1 Cochran is well-positioned in this new environment.

“Pittsburgh is a big small town or a small big town, however you want to put it, and this market likes to have a family name associated with a business,” he said. “Rob Cochran is the biggest buyer locally, and he prides himself, even though he’s a mega dealer, to do everything in his power that it doesn’t lose the hometown touch.”

Driving into the future

Cochran’s office is small, nondescript, distinguished only by an array of family photos, mostly taken when his kids were small.

He spends a lot of time at the newest sites, getting to know employees and fostering team spirit. 

“It’s called management by walking around and speaks volumes,” Putzier said. “When a family business gets that big, that’s one of the concerns of losing control of day-to-day and facing the customers. Rob is one of the best at that. He’s driven by the right reasons.”

And he’s also played a role in training the industry’s emerging leaders. Shawn Kukic, Lithia’s group vice president and top executive in Pittsburgh, came to the public company after six years at #1 Cochran.

“Operationally speaking, Rob invested in my development; he put me through an apprenticeship program and sent me to the NADA (National Automobile Dealers Association) academy for up-and-coming professionals,” Kukic said. “That was part of my training, but I also got to shadow Rob and learn more about what it takes to run a dealership.”

As succession issues weed out many of his long-time competitors, Cochran, at 53, has time on his side. 

Rob Cochran.

Enlarge

Rob Cochran.

JOE WOJCIK

He and his wife Christina have five children. Their daughters are grown with two working, respectively, in acting and television production; the third is a student at Georgetown University. Both sons are still in high school and have yet to pick colleges, let alone careers.

“It’s always something you’d like to see, moving on to the next generation,” Cochran said. “But I’d only want that if they have the passion and competency to lead the organization.”

What he doesn’t want, he emphasized, is to transition the business into the wrong hands.

Meanwhile, the dynamics of the landscape continue to evolve. There are still many national players on the expansion trail who have not entered Pittsburgh and can’t be counted out.

Lithia, No. 3 on Automotive News’ latest list, wants to buy more in the market, Kukic said. And there are smaller locals who are game for deals.

“We are always open to discussing new acquisitions, whether it’s with a brand we have currently or new brands,” said Gary Bowser Jr., dealer principal at Bowser Automotive. “If we feel the locations and brands make sense for our group and employees, then we would be open to considering expanding.”

Cochran is similarly measured about his strategy.

“As we look down the road, whatever the brands are that people like in the marketplace, those are the brands we want,” he said. “Our job as a regional retailer is to provide people in western Pennsylvania with options and choices.”

Cochran doesn’t say how big he wants his company to be.

“I just want it to be better,” he said. “I’ve never been one, even though I’m a math guy, to say we want to grow by this percentage. I focus on looking inward. That’s what we do every day.”

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UPMC East Will Double its Emergency Department Capacity to Meet Increasing Demand

PITTSBURGH – UPMC announced
today that construction has begun to expand the emergency department at UPMC East,
adding 14,000-square-feet of space that will more than double the capacity of
the emergency department. 

“Since opening UPMC East more
than six years ago, we have seen incredible growth in the number of patients we
treat in our emergency department and are excited to be able to expand this
area to better meet the needs of our community,” said Mark O’Hern, president of
UPMC East. 

The $22 million project will add
10 new, dedicated observation rooms and 10 additional fully private emergency
exam rooms, building on the current capacity of 20. Ground floor service areas
in central sterile processing, clinical engineering and information technology
also will be expanded. 

“We have had the opportunity to
provide excellent quality care close to home every day for the residents of the
eastern suburbs in and around Monroeville. As this community grows, our goal is
to grow with it, expanding the world-class services our communities expect of
UPMC,” said Rajesh Sehgal, M.B.B.S., M.D., F.A.C.P., vice-president, medical
affairs at UPMC East.  

Emergency department services
will not be disrupted during the construction. 

“Our team has invested a lot of
time in planning this expansion with local EMS and our physicians to ensure the
emergency department keeps running at full capacity throughout the construction
and we will continue to take great care of the patients that chose UPMC East
for their care,” O’Hern said.

The expanded area of the
emergency department is expected to open in July 2020.  

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Overdose Prevention – How to Get Help

Overdose Prevention – How To Get Help

Thursday, April 11, 2019
5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.

UPMC East – Ground Level
Conference Rooms A & B
2775 Mosside Boulevard
Monroeville, PA 15146

Substance abuse impacts virtually everyone in our community. Family and friends, caregivers, concerned community members, and people struggling from substance sue disorder are invited to join in an evening of sharing and discovery as we explore pathways to recovery. This program will help you understand treatment and recovery from substance use, and resources available to you.

Program includes:

  • Naloxone Education, Demonstration, and Training
  • FREE Naloxone kits
  • Experienced recovery peer specialists will discuss available local resources
  • Learn more about support programs for families affected by substance abuse

No appointment necessary.

Parking will be validated. Free light refreshments will be provided.

For more information, please call 412.357.3700.

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Electronics, Hazardous Waste to be Accepted at Monroeville Recycling Event

Erie-based
Environmental Coordination Services & Recycling will accept electronics and
household hazardous waste from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. April 6 at Monroeville Public
Works, 200 Starr Drive. This is the municipality’s second such event of the
year.

Workers
will not accept explosives, radioactive material, ammunition, medical waste,
syringes or large appliances.

Accepted
items include various chemicals, such as paint, cleaning products, pesticides,
car and household batteries, light bulbs, florescent tubes, oil and
anti-freeze. Electronic items include televisions, computers and accessories,
printers, cell phones and AC units, among others.

Fees
are required for certain items. Prices are:

• 60
cents per pound for CRT televisions and monitors

• 40
cents per pound for all other electronics

• 65
cents per pound for Freon devices (AC units)

• $1
per pound for paint

• $2
per pound for all other household hazardous waste

• $1.50
per pound for universal waste like bulbs and batteries

• $8
for each propane tank

According
to ECS&R’s website, the company accepts checks or credit cards for
payments.

Registration
is required. Visit the company’s website at bit.ly/2H24LIa or call
866-815-0016.Dillon Carr is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Dillon at
412-871-2325,dcarr@tribweb.com or
via Twitter 

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Annual Food Truck-A-Palooza has Best Year Yet

The third annual Food Truck-a-Palooza at the Monroeville
Convention Center brought in a record number of trucks and participants.

At
least 35 trucks and 3,000 people packed the venue at 209 Mall Blvd. on
Saturday.

It’s
presented by GoodTaste! Pittsburgh and Steel City Media.

GoodTaste!
Owner Dee Weinberg said it’s the largest indoor winter food truck festival in
Western Pennsylvania, and this year was its best one yet.

“Everybody
loves food, and what better place to try food trucks than all in one area?” Weinberg
said. “I think people are happy. The trucks are happy. The lines are long and
they have a place to sit and be entertained.”

There
were foods from Nakama, Revival Chili, South Side BBQ Company and Burgh Bites.
A complete list of trucks and event sponsors is available at goodtastepittsburgh.com/food-truck-a-palooza.

Derek
Widziszewski of Roscoe said he and his wife, Tawny, and a group of friends
enjoyed their experience at the festival.

“The
chili was excellent,” he said. “Our whole group makes sure we get something
different so we can sample everything. We pick what we like, but we pick off
everyone else’s plate. There was something for everybody.”

Theresa
Florian of Stockdale had a margarita chicken wrap from Speals on Wheels.

“I
was trying to stay away from junk and wanted something healthy with vegetables
and meat,” she said. “It was really good.”

Barbeque
was a very popular food option. Oakmont Barbeque Company sold out of its beef
brisket selections with hours left in the show. South Side BBQ Company
delivered its signature dish, the “Bar-be-Cone.”

The
Bar-be-Cone has mac and cheese, pulled pork, barbeque sauce and coleslaw
stuffed in a waffle cone.

This
year’s event offered much more than a gathering of trucks. Face painting, a
photo booth, various vendors with free food and drink samples, as well as live
entertainment such as musician Joel Lindsey were available in the backroom’s
large seating area.

Seating
was scarce and it was hard to move around at its second annual event because
the other room was not utilized.

“The
crowd was so large last year that we realized we needed bigger space,” Weinberg
said. “The Monroeville Convention Center has been very gracious (with its
space).”

Air
quality was a concern with all the food trucks under one roof.

Monroeville
Volunteer Fire Co. No. 6 members walked the site repeatedly with carbon
monoxide detectors, and enforced other safety measures such as limiting food
truck fuel usage to one 20-pound propane tank at a time.

“People
don’t realize how dangerous things could be,” deputy Chief Harold Katofsky
said. “We want to make sure the people here are safe and they don’t get sick.”

Katofsky
said some doors were open and fans were used to help circulate the air, and
members of the Allegheny County Health Department were on hand to inspect the
trucks before they served food.

Only
two trucks were prevented from being inside due to having 50-pound tanks, and
no air quality problems were detected, Katofsky said.

A
portion of the event’s proceeds went toward the fire department for its safety
efforts.

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Nationally Certified Speaking Professional Jeff Tobe Presents to the Monroeville Chamber of Commerce

This high-energy, participatory, humorous session has received outstanding reviews from diverse groups around the world. Certified Speaking Professional Jeff Tobe challenges you to step outside your comfort zone in positioning yourself more creatively than ever before. To be effective in today’s marketplace, you must force yourself to look at your organization’s EXPERIENCE from a different perspective. Tobe is not just entertaining – he provides real “tools” for creatively ENGAGING your internal and external stakeholders. With the push to competitive advantage in the marketplace, Jeff encourages people to stop competing on customer service! We now have to consider our internal and external customers’ EXPERIENCES from the minute they make contact with us to the minute they are done!

For more information about this event and to register click the link below.

https://monroevillepacoc.wliinc30.com/events/MACCEDGE%20Series%20%20Module%20One-905/details

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Making a Financial Impact on Pennsylvania’s Communities

“Sporting events represent an integral part of the Pennsylvania economy,” said Sertz. “The market is diverse, including youth and adult amateur, college and professional events that attract out-of-town visitors to destinations across the Commonwealth. These visitors generate room nights and spending in local economies that produce substantial tax revenues and employment impacts. Thanks to the sales and marketing efforts of PA Sports, our team reports increased annual sporting events, which means a positive economic impact for Pennsylvania.”

To read more about this article click the link below.

http://sportsplanningguide.com/making-a-financial-impact-on-pennsylvanias-communities/?inf_contact_key=c20b9105814a3e20f31f17b4a831a7867e470d92b8b75168d98a0b8cac0e9c09

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Enjoy Winter in Monroeville

ENJOY WINTER IN MONROEVILLE

Monroeville is conveniently located near Pittsburgh, and has something for everyone to enjoy.

The neighborhood of Monroeville is located only 12 miles east of Pittsburgh. It’s home to a variety of large and small businesses, a large residential community, bustling shopping districts, some great restaurants, and tons of things to do. Monroeville also has a recently renovated convention center that hosts many exciting events throughout the year. Here are some of the top things to do in Monroeville in the winter.

Skiing in Boyce Park

Do you love skiing, snowboarding, or snow tubing? Well, Monroeville’s Boyce Park has got your lift ticket ready! Boyce Park offers affordable winter fun for the whole family. You can ski and snowboard on beautiful slopes for all levels that cover more than 20 acres of the park. If skiing and snowboarding aren’t your thing, spend the day tubing down Western Pennsylvania’s steepest snow tubing hill. Indulge your need for speed and enjoy some outdoor winter fun!automobiledetailing

My minis, proud days are getting more proud. Just saying Boyce Park was just as fun as 7 Springs and it was only $56 #mrmom #skifloss #love #skiing #kids #boyce #detailing #mobiledetailing #pittsburgh boyce_park_ski_area
Eager to ski but don’t want to drive far? Boyce Park in Plum is the ski lodge for you. Just a quick 20-minute drive from Pittsburgh, Boyce Park offers skiing, snowboarding, and even snow tubing in a convenient location.🎿
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#pittsburgh #piattsir #pittsburghpride #steelcity #412 #blog #lifestyle #lifestyleblog #burghproud #discoverpgh #pittsburghbeautiful #pennsylvania #visitpgh #412pics

mwag412Boyce Park

"If winter comes, can spring be far behind?" -- Percy Bysshe Shelley
🔹
🔹11/27/2018
🔹

bianca_terente412Boyce Park

‘Twas a nice day to go fast🤤

aishwarya.gopiBoyce Park

❄️💕❄️
PC : @uttam_raju 🤗

bethyt63Boyce Park

We found lots of mushrooms today, none were edible, all were beautiful! Thanks to @czzazzc! Nice afternoon with a mushroom expert! #mushrooms #foraging #spores #chickenofthewoods

joshnosbischBoyce Park

Oh the snow guns are on? EXCELLENT! @k__eight @dylanfr58
#winterishere #timetoshred

mcmillenadamBoyce Park

no caption provided

doogbignerBoyce Park

Guinness meets snow for the second time in his young life. #labrador @harsaveslives @dogs.lovers

mcmillenadamBoyce Park

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Indoor Family Fun

We all tend to get a case of cabin fever during the winter months. Take the whole gang to Sky Zone to jump away the cold-weather blues! Freestyle jump encourages you to let go of gravity and grab some air while enjoying wall-to-wall trampoline courts. The classic game of dodgeball combined with trampolines unlocks a whole new way to play the game. Practice your aerial moves by taking a swan dive into a pit of foam. Two brand new attractions that were just added in January include a zip line and trapeze and swing!

therealzachpentz

Monroeville, Pennsylvania

March 22, 2016

Good day at Sky Zone today 😄 #skyzone @tristen_bressler @athleader50

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When you think about visiting a new city, you don’t often think about spending the day in a library. However, the Monroeville Public Library is no ordinary library! They have an awesome Maker Lab, which is a dedicated space for science and technology. They offer classes in coding, robotics, 3D design, engineering, and other special events. There are additional open hours where visitors can use tech items such as soldering irons, sewing machines and circuitry. Take some time to create something new as a family!

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Monroeville, Pennsylvania

Photo by user monroevillepubliclibrary, caption reads Make and take Tuesday! Drop in the Create Space anytime from 4-6pm to make your own robot!! Some assembly required 😉 #librariesofinstagram #makerspace #robots

January 31, 2017

Make and take Tuesday! Drop in the Create Space anytime from 4-6pm to make your own robot!! Some assembly required 😉 #librariesofinstagram #makerspace …

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Grab a Meal

Who doesn’t want to warm up next to a giant fire during the winter months? Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza in Monroeville lets you do just that, all while eating delicious and authentic Italian fare at the same time! A polished casual dining experience, Anthony’s authentic coal fired pizza is a great choice for families with picky eaters. Whether you try their oven roasted chicken wings, homemade meatballs, eggplant marino or a classic Italian salad, there is something to please every palate.

If you’re looking for a quick grab and go lunch, give Hello Bistro a try. They offer large, made-to-order salads and whether you get 5 or 15 toppings the price is the same! Their burgers are also really delicious, and perfect for a cold winter’s day.

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Anthony’s Coal Fired Pizza

Photo by user pghfooddude, caption reads Pizza Well Done is #CoalFire 🔥 @anthonyscoalfiredpizza well done!! 👏
#coalfiredpizza #pizzapizza

July 15, 2018

Pizza Well Done is #CoalFire 🔥 @anthonyscoalfiredpizza well done!! 👏 #coalfiredpizza #pizzapizza

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Shopping in Monroeville

Find all of your favorite stores in one place at the Miracle Mile Shopping Center. Where else can you test out a new mattress, shop for clothes, get a haircut, eat Chinese food, pet a puppy, enjoy a margarita for happy hour, grab some bargains, and get a massage all in one place? It’s not an exaggeration to say you could spend a whole day experiencing what Miracle Mile Shopping Center has to offer. Your wallet might come out a little lighter at the end, but you’ll definitely be happier.__voyta__

Покатушки⛷#войцеховы #ski #beautiful #pittsburgh #usa #monroeville #pennsylvania #voytsekhov

adurci

Comic Con was fun!
#ComicCon #SteelCity #Vibes #TimlessArtOfSeduction #NerdCentral #Monroeville #Seinfeld #Pokemon #FloppyEars #SteelCityComicCon

bottomless_pitt

Tried blazepizza delivery for a night in last week. I was pleasantly surprised!! Salad was good too! #blazepizza #pittsburgh #monroeville #churchill #pittsburghfood #pittsburghrestaurants #pizzadelivery #pittsburghfood #pittsburghfoodblogger #pgh #pghrestaurants #pghfoodbloggers #eeeeeats #foodie #foodporn #bottomless_pitt

wearebattlezone

Want to do something fun with family and friends over the Holidays?  Come on over to Battlezone and #getyourbattleon. #greensburg #johnstownpa #latrobe #murrysville #monroeville #7springs #blairsville #ligonier #pittsburgh

coastandmainMonroeville, Pennsylvania

Pure perfection. Our Five Onion Gratin with caramelized onions, sourdough and Gruyere cheese 📷: @412matt

abiyasart

We are the Monroeville Mall! Stop by and check out some of our Unique items, for this Valentine's day! visit out website here www.abiyasart.com
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#Riverside #SanBernardino #Detroit #Seattle #SanMarcos #Tampa #MonroevielleMall #Denver #Baltimore #Towson #Columbia #Lakewood #WashingtonPA #Maryland #France

cloud____babyMonroeville, Pennsylvania

🙌🏼🙌🏼🙌🏼 #killerclouds #clouds #clouds☁#cloudlife #cloudbaby #cloudchaser #cloudchasing #blueskies #cloudsociety #cloudnine #cloudporn #cloudpornography#cloudphotography #cloudphotos #cloudpic #pittsburgh #pittsburghskies #beautiful#naturalbeauty #heavenonearth #stunning #intheclouds #cloud #cloudscapes #cloudcity #cloudlove #cloudloversunite #cloudpeople #cloudlovers #cloudgang

cassandra_von_kreep

Early Happy Hour with shaffer7242
#drinks #alcohol #friends #longisland  #drunk #obey #pittsburgh #monroeville #pennsylvania

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Upcoming Events

Many of Monroeville’s unique events are held in the 100,000-square foot Monroeville Convention Center, and are open to the public. Check out their upcoming event calendar for up-to-date information, but you won’t want to miss the Steel City Kitties, the Outdoor Sport & Travel Show or the Food Truck a Palooza

The Monroeville Area Chamber of Commerce (MACC) is a diverse, member-driven organization focused on promoting and advancing business excellence. They are hosting a three part speakers series and the first session on Wednesday, April 3 is called “Coloring Outside the Lines: Creating a New Customer Experience”. This series will be led by customer experience expert Jeff Tobe, M.ED, CSP. This session challenges businesses to step outside their comfort zone and position themselves more creatively to be effective in today’s marketplace. For more information and to register, check out the MACC website

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Much anticipated Coast & Main restaurant opens in Monroeville Mall

Coast & Main will serve surf, turf, elegance and an arsenal of fresh flavors when it opens Tuesday in the Monroeville Mall.

The bi-level seafood and chophouse is owned by Ricky and Michelle Kirsop and sits in the spot (705 Mall Circle Drive) that was previously occupied by Monterey Bay Fish Grotto.

Mr. Kirsop also is the executive chef and presents a Pacific-Northwest inspired menu having grown up in Portland, Ore. After graduating from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Portland, he worked in a couple of the city’s restaurants before moving to Seattle to continue in the culinary path. He became an executive chef by the time he turned 24 and later was named the regional chef for the casual chain, Cucina! Cucina! In 2002, he came East and joined McCormick & Schmick’s in Reston, Va. He was transferred to Philadelphia a year later and moved to Pittsburgh in 2005 to continue working for the upscale steak and seafood chain.

“I am a huge Steelers fan and that’s what prompted me to move here,” he says.

He has not looked back since, especially since he also met his wife, Michelle, a Pittsburgh native, while he was the executive chef and she the general manager at McCormick. The couple also are the co-founders of Savor Pittsburgh, where the city’s finest chefs have gathered for the past 12 years to share their culinary creations and compete for the best dish of the year. The fundraiser benefits Magee-Womens Research Institute & Foundation and the 13th edition will be held on Sept. 27 at Petersen Events Center.

The Kirsops live in Plum and wanted to open a restaurant close to home. “Moreover, there are nine or 10 steakhouses in Downtown Pittsburgh but there is no fine-dining restaurant in Monroeville,” Mr. Kirsop says, on opening the dining spot in the mall.

He initially wanted to open just a steakhouse with a small section devoted to seafood but when he thought about the fish, crab and mussels he grew up on in the Pacific Northwest, he decided to divide the menu of small plates, entrees and happy hour items, into Coast and Main equally.

If you go:

Where: Coast & Main, 705 Mall Circle Drive, Monroeville Mall.

When: Open for lunch and dinner daily. Happy Hour: 4-6:30 p.m. Monday-Friday in the Lounge only.

Contact:. 412-380-6022; www.coastandmain.com

The surf part of the small-plate menu features East and West Coast oysters (half dozen, $14 and $16), small and tender steamed Manila clams ($14), Penn Cove mussels in a smoked tomato and saffron broth ($12), jumbo shrimp in a piquant tropical pineapple-mango cocktail sauce with a underlying bite of horseradish ($15). Entree choices include yellowfin tuna that comes with a togarashi sesame crust or a pistachio pesto crust for $38 and pillowy soft scallops that are seared and served with a Thai chili sauce or spinach Boursin cream ($36).

A creamy bisque is made with Dungeness crab ($12) that brings back fond memories for Mr. Kirsop. “I used to go Dungeness crab fishing and place traps in the water [off the coast of Washington state]. And then I would cook them right then and there,” he says.

Prime grade certified Angus beef is the star when it comes to “Main” items on the menu. Wagu ($64), bone-in filet ($56), porterhouse ($54) and a 38-day dry aged ribeye ($70) are served with sauces such as Cajun mushroom cream and red wine demi glace and toppings like roasted fig and shallots and a five-ounce lobster.

Other signature meats include pork chop with cherry bacon relish ($28), roasted chicken with lemon-artichoke butter ($26) and lamb chops with mint chimichurri ($42).

All desserts such as kailua cheesecake, triple-layered chocolate cake and Key Lime pie are made in-house.

A full-fledged bar is by the entrance on the lower level near the lounge and pours red and white wines and beer from the Pacific Northwest and California in addition to international ones. The happy hour menu is extensive, just like the main one, and includes choices of bruschetta, tacos, tostadas, sliders and chips and dips.

Even as the evening sun shines brightly through the big glass windows in the front, the blue hues at Coast & Main from the walls to the chairs and booths to the carpet set a cool and elegant tone. Spacing is generous in the 8,200-square-feet restaurant that seats 263. There also are two private dining areas where wine dinners, meetings and private events can be held.

The restaurant is open every day of the week for lunch and dinner and Happy Hour is from 4 to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

So Mr. Kirsop has a hectic workload ahead but he is unfazed.

“I am used to working 17 to 18 hours a day and that’s the decision I made because I love what I do,” he says. “I am going to work until I drop.”

Arthi Subramaniam: asubramaniam@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1494.

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No Mutation Needed: New Treatments Being Developed for a Small Group of Parkinson’s Patients May Work for Most People with the Disease

7/5/2018

PITTSBURGH – A gene linked to 3 to 4 percent of people with Parkinson’s disease could play an important role in most, if not all, people with the disease, according to new study findings from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and UPMC. The gene, called LLRK2, was previously thought to only cause disease when mutated, but researchers have found that it may be just as significant in the non-hereditary form of the disease, according to the study published today in the journal Science Translational Medicine.

“This discovery is extremely consequential for Parkinson’s disease because it suggests that therapies currently being developed for a small group of patients may benefit everybody with the disease,” said senior author J. Timothy Greenamyre, M.D., Ph.D., Love Family Professor of Neurology in Pitt’s School of Medicine, chief of the Movement Disorders Division at UPMC and director of the Pittsburgh Institute for Neurodegenerative Diseases (PIND).

Parkinson’s affects one million people in the U.S. and as many as 10 million worldwide and has no known cause, but is thought to involve both genetic and environmental factors. In 2004, researchers discovered that mutations in the LRRK2 gene (commonly pronounced as “Lark2”), overactivated the protein and caused Parkinson’s in a small group of people, often in a hereditary fashion. However, the LRRK2 protein is difficult to study because it is present in extremely small amounts in nerve cells that are affected in Parkinson’s.

To overcome this problem, Greenamyre and his team engineered a molecular ‘beacon’ that attached to LRRK2 and glowed red under a microscope only if the protein was active. This allowed them to also reveal the nerve cells in which LRRK2 was active in the brain.

The researchers applied the test to postmortem brain tissue donated to science by Parkinson’s patients, none of whom had mutations in LRRK2, and healthy individuals of approximately the same age.

Remarkably, the test indicated that in ‘dopamine neurons,’ which are the brain cells most commonly affected in Parkinson’s, LRRK2 was highly active in individuals affected by the disease, but not in the healthy individuals. This suggests that LRRK2 overactivity may be important in all people with Parkinson’s, not just those who have a mutation in the gene.

A second major finding of the study was that it connected two proteins that have separately been recognized as important players in causing Parkinson’s – LRRK2 and alpha-synuclein. Accumulation of alpha-synuclein leads to the formation of structures called ‘Lewy bodies,’ a hallmark of Parkinson’s.

While enormous efforts have been focused on alpha-synuclein, the cause of its accumulation is still poorly understood. Using a rodent model of Parkinson’s induced by an environmental toxin, Greenamyre and his team discovered that activation of LRRK2 blocked the mechanisms that cells use to clear excess alpha-synuclein, leading directly to its accumulation. The researchers then treated the animals with a drug currently being developed to treat familial Parkinson’s patients by blocking LRRK2 activity. The drug prevented the accumulation of alpha-synuclein and formation of Lewy bodies.

“LRRK2 ties together both genetic and environmental causes of Parkinson’s, as we were able to show that external factors like oxidative stress or toxins can activate LRRK2, which can in turn cause Lewy bodies to form in the brain,” noted lead author Roberto Di Maio, Ph.D., an assistant professor in Greenamyre’s lab and a researcher at the Ri.MED Foundation.

In the future, Greenamyre expects to build on these findings to discover how neurodegeneration caused by LRRK2 overactivation can be prevented, and identify how oxidative stress and environmental toxins cause LRRK2 activation.

Study co-authors include Eric K. Hoffman, Ph.D., Emily M. Rocha, Ph.D., Matthew T. Keeney, Briana R. De Miranda, Ph.D., Teresa G. Hastings, Ph.D., Alevtina Zharikov, Ph.D., and Amber Van Laar, M.D., from PIND; Antonia Stepan, Ph.D., and Thomas A. Lanz, Ph.D., from Pfizer Worldwide Research and Development; Julia K. Kofler, M.D., of Pitt; Edward A. Burton, M.D., of the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System and PIND; Dario R. Alessi, from the University of Dundee; and Laurie H. Sanders, Ph.D., of Duke University and PIND.

This work was supported by National Institutes of Health grants NS100744, R21ES027470, NS095387 and AG005133, the Blechman Foundation, the American Parkinson Disease Association, University of Pittsburgh Brain Institute, Michael J. Fox Foundation grant 6986, Medical Research Council grant MC_UU_12016/2, and friends and family of Sean Logan. The University of Dundee’s Division of Signal Transduction Therapy Unit received support from pharmaceutical companies Boehringer‐Ingelheim, GlaxoSmithKline, and Merck KGaA. Greenamyre briefly held an advisory position at Pfizer. The authors declared no further competing financial interests.

For Journalists

Arvind Suresh
Manager
412-647-9966
suresha2@upmc.edu

Madison Brunner
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412-578-9193
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Monroeville Police Fighting Crime With Surveillance Cameras

MONROEVILLE (KDKA) — For the last few months, the Monroeville Police Department has been fighting crime with technology.

Cameras have been set up all around the municipality to catch suspected criminals.

“If you come here to commit a crime, you will be seen, you will be caught,” said Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala.

The district attorney is praising the surveillance camera monitors at the Monroeville Police station, saying it’s changing the movement of crime by using technology.

Monroeville has had the system in place for three months.

So, with 25 cameras in place in Monroeville, several at busy intersections like at 22-48, the question is – are the cameras doing what they were designed to do?

Monroeville Police Chief Doug Cole admits he didn’t embrace the technology at first, but says now, it has gone above and beyond his expectations.

“Last night, we had an incident where we assisted the Pitcairn Police Department with a double shooting. We were able to place the getaway vehicle after we did some detective work and be able to go back and trace where it left and how it left our community,” Monroeville Police Chief Doug Cole said.

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Additional Surveillance Cameras Now Operational in Monroeville

ADDITIONAL SURVEILLANCE CAMERAS NOW OPERATIONAL IN MONROEVILLE

Pittsburgh PA —- Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen A. Zappala Jr., along with officials from Monroeville, announced today that additional surveillance cameras are now operational throughout Monroeville. The pledge to provide additional cameras had been announced a few weeks ago at a meeting of Monroeville business owners and community leaders and is a collaborative effort involving the DA’s Office, the Municipality of Monroeville, Visit Monroeville and the Monroeville Area Chamber of Commerce.

“These additional cameras are a top priority for our community and will be a very effective tool for our police force,” said Monroeville Mayor Greg Erosenko.

“I am very pleased at the cooperation of our business leaders and residents banding together for the common goal of ensuring that Monroeville is a safe place to raise families and to provide a positive experience to everyone visiting our community,” added Sean Logan, President of Visit Monroeville and the Monroeville Area Chamber of Commerce.

The cameras will stream back to a central location where they will be monitored in real time, part of a two year effort to utilize the latest technology at a time when the City of Pittsburgh and western Pennsylvania are being recognized nationally for their roles in technological innovations.

“The safety of a community should be an inclusive process and cameras are an important part of that process because we see what the camera sees in an objective fashion,” said D.A. Zappala. “The way that Monroeville has implemented this project with input from all the stakeholders should be a model for other communities.”

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MEDIA NOTE: REPORTERS WISHING GET MORE INFORMATION CAN CALL SEAN LOGAN AT (412) 856-7422.

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12 Video Cameras to Act as Eyes for Monroeville

Samson X Horne
By Samson X Horne | Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2016, 10:57 p.m.

The Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office will provide 12 high-resolution video cameras to monitor vehicles throughout Monroeville in an effort to reduce crime.

District Attorney Stephen A. Zappala Jr. told Monroeville public officials, businesses leaders and some residents about the initiative Tuesday.

“We’ve found over the years that the best deterrent to crime is knowing you’re going to be seen and knowing you’re going to get caught,” Zappala said.

Supplying the new cameras, which have license plate recognition capabilities at a cost of about $4,000 each, “is a continuation of what was started after the shooting at the mall,” said Mike Manko, spokesman for Zappala.

Officials declined to disclose locations for the cameras.

Police say Tarod Thornhill, 18, of Penn Hills opened fire into a crowd at Macy’s at the Monroeville Mall in 2015, wounding three people. His trial is scheduled for Oct. 17. Officials implemented a youth escort policy on weekends and reopened a police substation in the mall after the shooting.

The cameras through the DA’s office are an expansion of surveillance cameras in place in Monroeville, said Sean Logan, CEO of Visit Monroeville and president of the Monroeville Area Chamber of Commerce. The Monroeville Police Department monitors those cameras.

“We’re really just bringing crime prevention to the next level. We have to take the next step in crime prevention, and that’s technology with cameras,” Logan said.

The recognition software in the cameras will serve as “virtual checkpoints” in Monroeville, which is home to a busy shopping district, hospitals, the Community College of Allegheny County’s Boyce campus, and the Monroeville Convention Center. About 28,000 people live in the community, located at the “crossroads” of Interstate 376, Route 22 and the Pennsylvania Turnpike.

Monroeville Mayor Greg Erosenko encouraged business leaders to get involved by installing their own cameras that would link with the other cameras; doing so, he said, not only will assist with law enforcement but will “help your customers feel safe.”

“Let’s be honest, bad guys don’t want their face on film,” Erosenko said.

Monroeville police Chief Doug Cole said such a linked system is possible.

Two men were wounded in a daylight shooting June 21 outside a shopping center near the Monroeville Mall. Their injuries were not life-threatening. Bullets damaged the storefronts of two businesess.

“With these cameras, if you’re going to commit a crime, you’re going to get caught,” Logan said.

Samson X Horne is a staff writer for the Tribune-Review. Reach him at 412-320-7845 or shorne@tribweb.com.

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Fitzgerald Announces Launch of Parks Trails App for County Parks System

PITTSBURGH – Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald announced today the launch of a new Trails App which will give users information on trails available in the Allegheny County Parks System. Using their mobile devices, residents and visitors alike will be able to discover and navigate park trails both in advance of a hike, and while in the park too.

“We’re excited to launch the Trails App for our residents and visitors. Our nine county parks contain 12,000 acres and attract over two million visitors each year,” said Fitzgerald. “For hikers, being able to plan hikes, as well as utilize information while hiking will make their experience even better. We’re proud of the work that has been done on this effort to date and look forward to the continued offerings that this technology will provide to park users.”

The app focuses on navigation information for all users at each of the county’s nine parks. All trails – blazed, unmarked and paved – are shown in the map. Information on the blazed trails also includes length and difficulty (based on a hiker’s perspective). When the mobile device’s GPS is turned on, the app can also provide live elevation information when on a blazed trail. Additionally, users will have access to current weather conditions, alerts and upcoming forecasts from the National Weather Service.

“Our parks are a wonderful resource for so many different organizations and groups, many of which take full advantage of our many trails,” said Council Member John Palmiere, Chair of County Council’s Parks Committee. “Having a resource such as this app which makes the users’ experience better, safer and more enjoyable ensures that residents and visitors have a good, positive interaction with our parks system.”

The Division of Computer Services partnered with Esri, a geographic information systems (GIS) mapping software company, to create a product using the county’s GIS data. Working with Esri, the Pittsburgh Trails Advocacy Group, and the Allegheny County Park Rangers, the data and information collected was developed into an application that reflects current conditions for users. Work on future versions of the app will include information on trailheads, parking options, shelters and restroom facilities.

The map-based, GPS-enabled app is available and free to download in the Apple App Store. It will be available through the Android Play Store by the end of the week. The app can be found by searching “Allegheny County Parks Trails.”

# # #

Office of the County Executive
101 Courthouse • 436 Grant Street • Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Phone (412) 350-6500 • Fax (412) 350-6512

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This Region Needs the Mon-Fayette Expressway Extension

This Region Needs the Mon-Fayette Expressway Extension

Late last year the Construction Legislative Council issued a report reviewing a number of key transportation projects essential for the economic future of our region. On this list was the completion of the Mon-Fayette Expressway link from Route 51 to Monroeville, with extension of the Martin Luther King Jr. East Busway to the expressway.

The report was developed by a committee of the region’s leading transportation engineers, planners and professionals with expertise in development and design of public infrastructure.

It was disappointing that the Post-Gazette took a negative position on the expressway project in its Feb. 2 editorial “False Promise: The New Mon-Fayette Segment Is a Road to Nowhere.”

Our region has shown its resilience through evolution and adoption of new industries such as health care, education, technology, robotics, financial services, film and most recently oil and natural gas. However, southwestern Pennsylvania is crippled by severe congestion that significantly limits our economic competitiveness.

In the case of the Mon Valley, a lack of modern highway access has significantly limited the redevelopment opportunities of brownfield industrial sites. Linking these sites to regional and interstate markets is essential to increase jobs in the Mon Valley.

In addition, transit access into Oakland and other parts of Pittsburgh from the extension of the busway to the expressway would both improve access of Mon Valley residents to job opportunities throughout the region and spur redevelopment of Mon Valley communities.

We hope that businesses and residents of the Mon Valley will take the opportunity to participate in meetings and hearings on the restart of the expressway project and offer their thoughts on the benefits of this valuable transportation improvement.

JIM WEAVER
Chairman
Construction Legislative Committee
Green Tree

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A New Pennsylvania Tourism Slogan? It’s About That Time

HARRISBURG PATRIOT NEWS
March 8, 2016

We’re going to bet Thomas Jefferson and the other founding fathers never really thought about how to make Pennsylvania stick in the common man’s mind as a travel destination.

But at the rate Pennsylvania’s going in the 21st Century, those guys from Independence Hall may soon start demanding royalties.

The state Tourism Office unveiled its new marketing slogan for state tourism promotion Tuesday, and it is – drum roll please: “Pennsylvania. Pursue Your Happiness.”

The accompanying logo is designed, officials said, to present a fresh look for Pennsylvania, with the hint of a smile.

The new tagline is central to a re-branding effort tagged to traditional travel guides and paid advertising, as well as very 21st-Century social media campaigns that developers hope will spawn an inter-active conversation.

“We’re asking our social media followers to join the conversation and share photos of what makes them happy about travel in Pennsylvania using the hashtag #PATravelHappy,” Department of Community and Economic Development spokeswoman Lyndsay Kensinger said.

The slogan replaces “State of Independence,” the winner of a contest sponsored by former Gov. Ed Rendell’s administration that also happened to play off the Philadelphia-born Declaration of Independence.

“This new slogan encourages travelers to satisfy a core virtue which we all desire and can never have too much of — happiness,” Karen Winner Sed, co-chair of the Pennsylvania Tourism Partnership, said during the official unveiling at a Somerset County winery Tuesday.

“Whether you are looking to explore the outdoors, a historical attraction, or an urban setting the overarching motivator is happiness,” Winner Sed said.

The tourism partnership is a public-private entity that helped lead consumer research and brand development efforts to develop the new brand over the last 18 months, at a cost of roughly $500,000 split between state funds and private matches.

Because the initiative was kicked off and funded in the 2013-14 fiscal year, it was not stopped by this year’s budget impasse, Kensinger said.
DCED still has about $500,000 on hand to kick off the new campaign’s roll-out, which will be supplemented by additional private sector matches, according to Kensinger.

New PA Slogan

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