In this update:
55th Anniversary of the Belmont Complex in East Franklin Township, Armstrong County
This past weekend I had the pleasure of dropping the first puck, with assistance from my daughter Rosie, for one of the hockey games commemorating the 55th Anniversary of the Belmont Complex in East Franklin Township, Armstrong County.
The late Hugo Montebell founded the site in 1967. Then, with the support from Ray Boarts and others in the community, the Armstrong County Recreation Authority was formed in 1979.
In 1985, Armstrong County officially took over the operation of the complex and it continues to thrive as a great hockey site for many teams and leagues across the region.
Happy 55th Anniversary to Belmont and best wishes for many more!
Alle-Kiski CareerLink GED Ceremony
I was honored to be invited to speak last week at the Alle-Kiski CareerLink GED Ceremony in New Kensington.
Mr. Don Acker was hired five years ago as the program manager and what a job he has done!
His passion and compassion for helping those who have run into some difficulty was evident to me almost immediately when I first met him several months ago. At that time, I committed to return when the milestone of the 100th person to complete the program was reached. I am happy to report that during last week’s ceremony we celebrated 107 folks.
I enjoyed hearing some of the students’ stories and was assured they all have bright futures ahead of them, largely due to Don and his staff’s dedication to each and every one of them.
I applaud you all – well done!
Giving Thanks for Our Blessings
“Let all of us, in accordance with our hallowed custom, foregather in our respective places of worship or in our homes and offer up prayers of thanks for our manifold blessings. Let the happiness which stems from family reunions on Thanksgiving Day be tempered with compassion and inspired by an active concern for those less fortunate in our own country and in other lands; and let us ask God’s continuing help and guidance in our conduct, both as individuals and as a Nation.” — President Dwight Eisenhower, Thanksgiving Day 1957
I wish you and your loved ones a happy Thanksgiving filled with warmth and gratitude.
Local Food Banks Benefit from Hunters Sharing the Harvest
In 2021, Pennsylvanians participating in Hunters Sharing the Harvest donated 187,000 pounds of venison to families in need, helping to make their holidays brighter.
Hunters Sharing the Harvest allows hunters to donate their extra venison to food pantries and community assistance centers across Pennsylvania via a statewide network of butchers. Over the last 31 years, the program has distributed nearly 2 million pounds of donated meat.
An average-sized deer will provide enough high-protein, low-fat meat for 200 meals. Hunters Sharing the Harvest is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit charity funded by public and private sources. Hunters wanting to help can find the nearest participating meat processor here.
Limiting the Hassle of Thanksgiving Travel
Nearly 55 million Americans are expected to travel 50 miles or more from home this Thanksgiving. That’s a 1.5% increase over 2021 and 98% of pre-pandemic volumes.
One way to get the most current and relevant Pennsylvania traffic information without taking your eyes off the road or your hands off the wheel is the 511PA app. 511PA provides real-time, hands-free traffic advisories for every state roadway in Pennsylvania, and for major roadways in neighboring states of New Jersey and West Virginia.
The Historic Holiday Traffic page allows users to see how traffic speeds on the Wednesday before and Sunday after Thanksgiving in 2019 and 2021 compare to traffic conditions during a typical, non-holiday week. Users can choose their region and view an hour-by-hour, color-coded representation of traffic speeds to help them decide the best times to travel during the holiday.
AAA says traffic will be lighter before 8 a.m. and after 8 p.m. on Wednesday. On Thanksgiving, the best travel times are before 11 a.m. and after 6 p.m.
Please Support Small Businesses with Holiday Shopping
While online shopping has its place, local small businesses with brick-and-mortar stores and owners who live nearby are a huge asset to communities.
Small Business Saturday is a reminder that these businesses create 65% of jobs in Pennsylvania, and the holiday shopping season is a great opportunity to support them.
Many of the goods and services offered by these businesses are locally sourced or crafted, so the effect of buying local is multiplied. Please support our local employers this season and year round.
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