Anyone who grew up listening to the music of the Wee Jams probably calls one of the North Boroughs communities home.

It's been close to 50 years since the group formed, and as much as the world has changed, there have been a few constants, the sound of the band among them. The close harmony, the heavy bass, the soaring falsettos, the blue-eyed soul harkens to another era --pre-British music invasion, pre-heavy metal, pre-rap. Could it really survive nearly half a century?


"…God's first miracle was to turn water into wine…When the wine is gone and Twilight is upon us, it is time to thank God for all He has given us. And we have chosen to recycle God's gift back into light…"

This message on the front page of Cindy Rezabeck's Web site for the product that she creates in her Ohio Township home has a prayer-like tone to it, almost Biblical, in fact.

"I was thinking of a catchy hook. I'm religious, but I wouldn't say that I'm over-zealous," Cindy said.


In an era when blaring guitars, pounding drums and bizarre videos rule the musical worlds of teen audiences, many people would have been surprised to find well over 100 Avonworth middle and high school students seated on a stage floor, spellbound at the playing of two young ladies who expanded their listeners’ cultural tastes to appreciate the sounds of a harp.


North Hills Community Outreach has 69 openings available for low-income individuals who wish to participate in the soon to be ending Family Savings Accounts program.

Through this program, savers receive the dollar-for -dollar match on their savings, up to $2,000 for a specific goal such as a car purchase, home repair or purchase, small business asset or post-secondary education. The matching funds are provided by the Pennsylvania Depart-ment of Community and Economic Development.


Several members of the Three Rivers Rowing Association grouped up last weekend to row a distance that, if they would have been on water, would have taken them from Pittsburgh to Columbus, OH.

The young athletes weren't training for an upcoming competition. And they weren't showing off their skills for passersby at Ross Park Mall, where they had set up 10 ergometers, machines that simulate distances and intensity of rowing.


Walls have often been the objects of symbolic significance.

In his poem, "Mending Wall," Robert Frost wrote, "…something there is about a wall that wants it down…"

Then there's Pink Floyd's wall and President Reagan's end-of-the-Cold War-cry, "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall."

And so on.


On the Saturday after Thanksgiving, the 10 o'clock breakfast crowd at Totin's Diner on Perry Highway in Wexford extends out the door, hungry Christmas shoppers waiting for available seating.


Most people who know Sean Adams think he's a fairly down-to-earth guy.

His Emsworth office is as basic as an office can be: folding tables, folding chairs, a few laptops. No fancy eating habits, either. The mini-fridge is stocked with soft drinks and the microwave stands ready to heat up cans of Dinty Moore beef stew stacked five high on top.


"Believe it or not, but this is going to be finished by the end of next week."

Jerry Santucci applies finishing touches to the drywall work he's wrapping up in the area behind the bar of the new dining room scheduled to open as a celebration of the one-year anniversary of the Ohio River Boulevard restaurant, Café Notte.

The grand opening of the room, scheduled for Nov. 26, marks the latest phase in the development of Santucci Plaza and will feature entertainment by two Pittsburgh legends, saxophonist Kenny Blake and drummer Roger Humphries.


Anyone reading a printed copy of this article -- paper with words and photographs on it -- is a dinosaur.

If you are reading it on-line at, you have at least advanced to the Bronze Age.

But since "The Citizen" has no app, that's as far as you're going to go. You are lost in the past, consigned to the dust bins of knowledge, denied up-to-the-nanosecond access to news as it is occurring from the North Boroughs to the northern steppes of Central Asia.


In 1967, S. E. Hinton published "The Outsiders," a novel set in Tulsa, OK, where two classes of teens, the poor kids, known as the Greasers, and the Socs, a reference to the socially elite, constantly butt heads.

Drop back to Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet" and you find the Montagues and the Capulets, who eventually became the Sharks and the Jets in "West Side Story."

And today, every school has its jocks and its preps and its Goths, among others.


Newspaper reports described streets clogged with fans trying to catch a glimpse of the singer as she approached the theater where she was scheduled to perform. The venue was “Standing Room Only” long before her arrival, with tickets selling for the equivalence in today’s money of nearly $200. Thousands unable to get tickets gathered beneath the windows of her dressing room, hoping to hear the distant sound of her voice.


Students at Avonworth High School have formed one of the newest chapters of America's oldest and largest service program for high school students, Key Club International. The student-led organization works toward the goal of teaching leadership through serving others.

Learning of the club through a close friend who attends North Allegheny High School, where the club has been offered as an extracurricular activity, sophomore Alexa Valenta led the effort to establish an Avonworth chapter that will be chartered by Allegheny North Kiwanis.


Hip-hop: Most people either hate or love the genre of music linked to bands such as Notorious B.I.G, Naz, Public Enemy, Lil Wayne.

And for most people over 40, it's probably more the former -- hate -- than the latter, with little chance that anything might change their minds.

Really, now. CD jackets with "Parental Advisory" prominently displayed, lyrics sometimes built around violence, drugs, life in the 'hood.

Not exactly North Boroughs fare.


The Community Theatre Players will stage the Orson Welles classic radio drama, "The War of the Worlds," at the Community Presbyterian Church of Ben Avon, Church Avenue.


Leaf collection will begin in late October in Ben Avon.

Residents are asked to rake leaves to the curb. No twigs, branches, mulched material, grass or other debris will be collected.

A final pass will be made on each street the last week of November. Collection of leaves on Ohio River Boulevard will occur the first week of December.

Once a street has been collected for the last time, residents are asked not to place any additional leaves at the curb. Leaves can be bagged for disposal during weekly refuse collection.


After the mother of one of Susan Matthews’ closest friends passed away, the victim of breast cancer, she knew that she could not simply offer her condolences and go back to life and business as usual.

And it was her business, Matthews Arts on North Balph Avenue in Bellevue, that provided the perfect opportunity for a fund-raising project to support research that hopefully will lead to a cure for this disease.


Eric Lawry relaxes in a coffee shop and flips through a magazine of lists.

A list of the world's best beaches. A list of the world's tallest buildings

Not included in this magazine are two categories that he'd like to add: The most popular blues and rock music festivals of the past year, and the most popular bands appearing at them.

Because if such lists were compiled, Eric would be associated with both.


A celebration tomorrow on Lincoln Avenue will go far beyond simply marking the 65th anniversary of Bellevue’s oldest family business.

It also will commemorate an “American-as-apple-pie” recipe for success, as baked up by Lincoln Bakery owner Joe Porco, who purchased the business from his father-in-law, Andy Slezak, in 1990.

The recipe that has worked so well for him throughout the decades? Lots of hard work, quality service and products, dedicated employees and loyal customers.

Lincoln had already been established for 10 years when Slezak purchased it in 1945.


It was an emotional moment for Jennie-Lynn Knox as she held the wheel of LST 325, a Navy ship that paused in the Emsworth Locks on Wednesday morning on its way to docking on Pittsburgh’s North Shore.

“I can’t believe that this is where he would have stood,” she said softly, looking straight out at the water just as her father, James W. Knox of Emsworth, must have done for countless hours during his service aboard LST 491.


Almost every girl has that ballerina dream. The lights, the tights, the music, the Prince Char-ming.

But then come the practice -- hours of practice -- along with ankle sprains and instructors' demands and so often that dream becomes a memory, along with Barbies and other childhood interests.

Amy Herchenroether, the daughter of Wendy and Dan Herchenroether of Ben Avon, probably experienced all of those stages in her dance training, but since starting "…about when I was 3," her love of dance has grown with her skills, and at age 17, the dedication is beginning to pay off.


“When we were doing our exterior facelift around four years ago,” Rev. Catherine Purves, minister of Bellevue United Presbyterian Church, recalled, “people kept asking if we were going to sandblast the stone too.” “No way,” she told them. “We earned that good Pittsburgh soot.” The blackened old church on Lincoln Avenue next to Bellevue Elementary has been a neighborhood institution for 109 years.


While the thermometer nudged its way toward the 90 degree mark on a recent Sunday, a gathering of friends and residents of Metowers in Avalon sang along to the strains of "Winter Wonderland" and "White Christmas" while dining on a sumptuous buffet luncheon, playing games and enjoying a nip or two, all as a way of celebrating Christmas in July, an indoor picnic held in Avalon.

Sally Adams, a Metowers resident, explained how this early version of the "season to be jolly" came about.


Cindy Bujalski found an unexpected benefit to working part-time in the Avalon tax office.

“I started hearing all these stories, the history of Avalon, things I didn’t know about the borough,” she said.

She found the tales of streetcars and stores long gone from Avalon’s landscape to be fascinating and wanted to learn more, but it seemed the history of the borough was more anecdotal than anything else, stories passed down from parents and grandparents but never recorded for future generations.