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Ben Avon's new mayor, Robert Jones, is sworn in by District Judge Tara Smith on Monday, Jan. 4.

Maria West was re-elected president of Emsworth Council during the reorganization meeting on Jan. 4.

The woman whose impact on Bellevue will be felt for generations has died.

Rosemary Heflin, 77, died in her Bellevue home on Saturday, Dec. 19, 2009.

Heflin was the first woman ever elected to Bellevue Council, running for office in the 1970s, and later became the borough's first -- and only -- woman mayor. She devoted more than two decades to Bellevue government, but her involvement and activism started long before she took a seat in council chambers.

Journalist, novelist, short story writer and Burmese dissident Khet Mar addressed Avonworth students recently, speaking of her career as a writer in a nation where censorship is the norm and imprisonment for those voicing their opinions is standard practice. She spoke of how her activity in protests of the late 1980s and early 1990s led to a year in prison, and how she has worked as a teacher and for humanitarian causes following her release from jail.

The Northgate High School Concert Choir and Middle School Chorus will present "The Gift of Music" on Wednesday, Dec. 16, at 7:30 p.m. in the high school auditorium. Admission is free, and alumni are invited to join in singing the traditional, "This Christmastide." Rehearsing for the concert are members of the “Triple-Trio Ensemble (with Shaquille).” Pictured from left are Amy Haller, Rebecca Fischer, Kayla Moss, Ina Pierce, Shaquille Nicholson, Margaret Knight, Lydia Glatz, Leah Dunn, Kim Senko. Not pictured, Bridgit Walters.

Allegheny General Hospital - Suburban Campus representative Kathy Ferri shows some of the extravagant theme baskets that are being raffled off to raise money for charitable efforts in the North Boroughs. The annual fund-raiser features baskets containing items donated by different hospital departments. This year’s baskets will include children’s bicycles, a flat screen TV, a Wii fitness package, among many other items.

This 12-foot-plus tree arrived in Bellevue on Tuesday, just in time to become a featured attraction at Bellevue’s annual Light Up Night tonight. Donated by Allegheny General Hospital - Suburban Campus and delivered by hospital staff, it took Bellevue DPW’s Tony Fiorenzo (left) and Joe Wright (right), and AGH-SC’s Dave Kusserow (center) to unload the tree. It has been placed in front of Northwest Savings Bank on Lincoln Avenue, where it will be lit at 7 p.m., when Light Up Night festivities, sponsored by the North Suburban Chamber of Commerce, kick off.

Running back Jimmy Zubik proved to be valuable to more than just the Avonworth Antelopes. Zubik, pictured above at right with Avonworth assistant coach Joe Zeglowitsch, was named the most valuable player (MVP) for his performance in a game that pitted all-stars from northern WPIAL teams against all-stars from city schools and southern WPIAL teams at Cupples Stadium on Nov. 21.

Today's the day I've been waiting for. I can hardly wait until my feet hit the floor. My clothes are ready, they're cleaned and pressed. In a few short moments I will be dressed. Down to the kitchen to get something to eat. Should I have cereal, or a breakfast treat? from "Today's the Day! My New Shoes"

NASA astronaut and Air Force Col. Mike Fincke spoke to Avonworth Middle School students, high school science students and the student body at the elementary school last week, encouraging them to work hard to achieve their goals.

Fincke said that he has been fortunate to do what he always had wanted to do, but admitted, “I’ve had the same amount of failure as success.”

Guinness Book of World Records holder and strongman Jon Pritikin amazed Bellevue Elementary School students last week with feats such as bending a frying pan in two, bending a steel bar with his teeth, ripping a telephone book in half and breaking a baseball bat over his knee. Pritikin, whose visit was sponsored by the National Character Education Foundation, really impressed students, however, when he told them of being a child bullied and shunned by classmates and ignored by most teachers. He challenged students to become “heroes and leaders,” standing up for others both in school and out.

Strongman Jon Pritikin signs autographs for Bellevue Elementary students after entertaining them with the feats of great strength that earned him a place in the Guinness Book of World Records. His real message, however, was that students could become the strongest by not bullying their classmates, and standing up for those who are bullied.

Strongman Jon Pritikin signs autographs for Bellevue Elementary students after entertaining them with the feats of great strength that earned him a place in the Guinness Book of World Records. His real message, however, was that students could become the strongest by not bullying their classmates, and standing up for those who are bullied.

Northgate girls’ volleyball team members Erica Benny (center) and Amanda Silay (right) along with coach Stephanie Francis were recognized by the Northgate School Board and athletic director/principal Bryan Kyle at the board’s meeting Monday evening. Both girls were named to the first team all conference, while Benny also was named to the all-WPIAL third team for the second consecutive year. The board also recognized the girls’ cross country team and individual runner Bridgit Walters for their performance during the WPIAL and PIAA championships.

Avonworth had no trouble shutting out Monaca in the first post-season game last Friday, but will face a real challenge when they play a tough Clairton team in the WPIAL quarterfinals tonight. The game will be played at Chartiers-Houston. Pictured above in last week’s game, the Antelopes’ offensive line provides protection for running back Jimmy Zubik (standing, at center) during the 27-0 win. “Lopes pictured include Andrew Puciata (#40), Veasar Cenceros (#56, on ground at left), Jeff Wehner (#55), Donte Ianelli (#66), and Slade O’Dell (#58).

Anyone over the age of 50 probably can remember bedroom nightstand clocks that glowed soft green thorough the night, a convenient way for insomniacs to check the time, but deadly for the factory workers who assembled those marvels of modernity. Avonworth High School's fall play, "Radium Girls," which runs Nov. 18-21 at 7:30 p.m., with a Saturday matinee at 2 p.m., dramatizes the plight of women who painted the dials with radium, a miracle cure discovered by Madame Curie and used for the shrinking of tumors.

Avonworth Middle School will dedicate a special area for reflection in memory of a student who was killed in a car accident earlier this year.

A ceremony in memory of Jacob Snively will be held at Avonworth Middle School on Saturday, Nov. 21, at 2 p.m. During the ceremony, a bench and area for reflection will be dedicated in his honor. The area is located in the courtyard outside of the middle school cafeteria, where the ceremony will take place.

Light refreshments will follow in the school cafeteria. In the case of inclement weather, the ceremony will take place in the cafeteria.

Avalon Volunteer Fire Company member Jack Downey, pictured above at left, received a plaque from fire company president Jerry Ayers as the volunteers honored his half-century of service. The award was presented at the fire company’s meeting on Monday.

The Avalon - Bellevue Kiwanis Club held its final meeting last Monday evening. After 63 years of charitable work, membership in the club had declined to a handful, who decided to disband.Among the longtime members who attended Monday’s final meeting were, pictured above from left: seated - Stanley Zawojski, Will Mecklinburg, William Shirley and Frank Setcavage; standing - Brian Shirey, Lenora Bauer and Charles Miklos. The club raised funds for a number of local projects and programs, including school arts and DARE.

Avalon-Bellevue Kiwanis Club member Lenora Bauer presents Bellevue Police Officer Michael Hudson with a $500 contribution to the DARE program, which targets issues of substance abuse and bullying among school children. The Kiwanis Club, a longtime supporter of the local DARE program, made a final contribution Monday evening before the club disbanded.

Northgate's Josh Ellis catches a pass from quarterback Jon Girvin in the second quarter of the Flames' Senior Night win over Quaker Valley. Visit the Sports section for the full story.

Some 30 Northgate High School art students spent last Monday decorating the windows of businesses in Bellevue with seasonal images. Pictured from left with their creation are Carolyn Denes and Alison Gusew. Windows were painted at 28 shops in the Lincoln Avenue business district.

Firefighters, police and medics work to free Jean Parilla, 63, of Irwin Avenue, Bellevue, from her vehicle after it was hit head-on on Ohio River Boulevard in Avalon last Friday morning, Oct. 16. The driver of the second vehicle -- Jennifer White, 32, of Anaheim Street, North Side -- told police that she was traveling south on Route 65 when a brown car pulled out in front of her, causing her to lose control and cross over the center line, where her car collided with the vehicle driven by Parilla.

Avonworth’s 2009 homecoming queen, Kate Ward, received her crown during pre-game festivities last Friday from 2008 queen Shelby Bassinger. Also pictured are homecoming court member Kaley Zahren and Kate Ward’s parents. Other members of the court were Abigail Donovan, Molly Frew, Andrea Weinzierl and Jessica Wintermantel.