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Ellwood School Board Cuts Music Teacher Position

“I’m asking you to reconsider hiring an Elementary Music Teacher,” Renee Pitrelli, a parent at yesterday’s Board meeting, said. “It would be in the school district’s best interest even just part-time.” Last night’s Ellwood City School Board meeting seemed to be much more mild than the one last month. The flood of forty parents concerned over the Elementary Music Teacher position who rushed May’s meeting dwindled down to six yesterday. With the budget to be decided, it seemed like most of the supporters had already given up hope before receiving the final decision. For those of you who don’t know,…


Police Arrest Area Residents Operating North Side Meth Lab

Ellwood City Police were led by an anonymous tip to a house in the North Side neighborhood on Thursday leading to the arrest of two residents who were operating an “extremely dangerous and fully functional” methamphetamine laboratory inside a home. Reports said the house had no electricity and was later found to have lanterns and large amounts of kerosene inside. Richard Brian Lumley, 43, of 332 Orchard Ave. and Timothy Bill Locke, 32, of 4446 Hollow Road, Wayne Township were arrested and arraigned on charges related to operating a meth lab. After the search and arrest of the suspects, police…


Borough Ordinance Now Allows Free Parking After 5 P.M.

At a special Ellwood City Council meeting held last Thursday, borough council changed its parking enforcement rules to now allow free parking after 5 p.m. within the borough. This comes after a wave of parking tickets were issued on Lawrence Avenue during business after-hours. Over 25 tickets have now been voided per the request of Mayor Anthony Court. The original metering ordinance called for enforcement from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. but had gone largely unnoticed until the wave of ticketing after 6 p.m. in late-February was brought to light. This also comes after a meeting in January when council…


Borough Manager Announces Retirement

As he flipped through an album of Ellwood City photos from years gone by, Dom Viccari had a glow in his eyes. Viccari loves Ellwood City, but he said it’s time to step down as borough manager—a job he has proudly held since April of 2006. Viccari announced his retirement at Monday’s borough council meeting. Viccari talked about the opening of the Emporium and many other celebrations over the years with a hint of nostalgia. His smile grew wide as he flipped the photo album’s pages and talked about the 90 feet of birthday cakes that was a highlight at…


Ellwood Schools to Add Armed Security Guards

Ellwood City School District voted unanimously on Thursday to implement armed security guards to each of their district schools beginning in a matter of weeks. According to the district superintendent Frank Aloi, they will have an armed security guard at each of their four schools, one at Lincoln High School and one at Perry, Hartman and North Side elementary schools, as part of an increase in their school security and safety. Aloi said they hope to have the security guards make their presence in the schools within two to three weeks. The group providing the security service, OSA Global, is…


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Perpetual Childhood Boutique New Look, Same Traditions

Perpetual Childhood Boutique will open its doors Friday and Saturday at noon for its grand opening with a bit of a new look and new owners but the same warm, personal attention offered since the 1990s. Lori Hannon, co owner, said she decided to buy the business one day after a visit to the store. “I came in one day and Bill and Geraldine said they were selling the store,” Hannon said. “I was sad.” Hannon said she mentioned it to her husband that night, and he asked her if she wanted to buy it. Hannon, a 15-year customer of…


EllwoodCity.org Reaches 1 Million Visitors in 2012

As of Dec. 1, the online news website, EllwoodCity.org, reached the 1 million mark – that is, the site had over 1 million pages viewed throughout the site. By the end of the year, analytics show that the site could hit a high mark of 1,100,000 page views. In addition to the page views, our community website has crested over the 400,000 visits mark. For nearly a decade, EllwoodCity.org has been providing the town, and those who have moved away, with a fresh way to get the local news, look at photos and videos and read town gossip. However, never…


A New Nativity Scene to Be Unveiled

Ellwood City borough workers began setting up holiday decorations on the front lawn of the Municipal Building on Friday; yet, one display was missing – the Nativity Scene. Because of a threatened lawsuit by Freedom from Religion Foundation of Madison, Wis., the Nativity Scene will be off borough property for the first time in over 50 years. Instead, a Santa Claus and snowman decorate the spot formerly reserved for the religious display. With the help of attorney Joseph Bellissimo, a new nativity will be erected a few blocks away from its former spot. Bellissimo, owner of the former St. Agatha…


Completion of Community Plaza is Near

The borough’s Community Plaza and Stage continues to make progress and the end is near. Another step was taken this week as trees were added to the main plaza area. According to Lenore Bazzichi, president of Ellwood City Revitalization, all the trees and flowers in the plaza and farmers’ market area are being donated and maintained by Wendy and David Barensfeld. “Even without the leaves on the trees, you can see what an impact that will have on the space,” Bazzichi said. Just last month, the community plaza made even more progress by installing the fountain on the side of…


Board Discusses Fate of Former Elementary School

Last month, Walnut Ridge Elementary School was officially closed. Now, the school board is prepared to sell the once smallest of the district’s elementary schools. This decision is coupled with the selling of Ewing Park school’s contents – a school that was also a former elementary school in the district. All the members of the Ellwood City School Board were in favor Thursday night of receiving an appraisal and exploring the sale of the Walnut Ridge school building. In its final school year, Walnut Ridge held approximately 140 students. Because of its size, the district, facing huge deficits from the…