BILL HASTINGS' 'INSIDE INDIANA:' Santa, 'Warm-Up America,' Stanley, Shirley, etc.
December 13, 2013 10:50 AM

To whom it may concern —


There was a local connection in the live telecast of the classic musical “The Sound of Music” on NBC last week.

Charles “Skip” McGreevy, a retired teacher from Indiana and the Armstrong-Indiana Intermediate Unit and an Indiana resident, has a cousin, Michael Campayno, who made his television debut as Rolf.

A senior in the Carnegie Mellon School of Drama, Campayno is a Pittsburgh native and said he was excited and honored when he learned he had gotten the part playing next to such celebrated stars as Carrie Underwood, Stephen Moyer, Laura Benanti, Audra McDonald and Christian Borle.

In a news release, Campayno was quoted as saying, “I was really nervous going into rehearsals because I thought I was going to be star-struck. But it’s been so amazing because that group of people, especially Carrie, has made everyone feel so comfortable. Everybody feels like they’ve already known each other and I am a lot less star-struck than I thought I would be.”


Santa Claus himself will be available for a photo shoot with the Gazette’s Scoopbug team from 5 to 8 p.m. today as part of the Lovin’ Downtown Every Second event for December through Downtown Indiana.

Photos with Santa can be taken at Lucy Rae’s, and many of the downtown businesses will offer holiday specials, live musical entertainment and extended hours.

Carolers will also be strolling along Philadelphia Street to spread holiday cheer.


Santa and an elf recently also visited the mentally and physically challenged adults at ICW, where the tradition of their Christmas party was started in the 1970s by Sam Jack and was traditionally held at McSorley’s Restaurant on Philadelphia Street.

This year, about 200 guests and aides attended the party, held at the Indiana Country Club, where use of the ballroom was donated for the event, along with donated meals by vendors and more.

Entertainment was provided by the Indiana Junior High eighth-grade choral ensemble under the direction of Ellen Werner.

Carrying on the tradition of her father, Christine Toretti provided gifts for attendees, and candy was donated by Walt Lewis.


Citizens in Bolivar, Robinson and West Bolivar should be on the watch Christmas Eve to catch a glimpse of Santa and Mrs. Claus being escorted through the communities starting at 8:45 p.m.


Members of the local “Warm-Up America” group that meets at Michael’s Craft Store reached a milestone this week, completing more than 450 afghans since the group formed in 2002.

Using donated yarn, the group has knitted 22,000 7-by-9-inch rectangles to make the afghans, which are comprised of 49 rectangles each.

At a Christmas party Saturday, they donated 38 afghans to veterans at Tomorrow’s Hope in Coalport, a transitional housing and service care center for veterans.

Other years, recipients of the afghans have included the local American Red Cross chapter, Indiana County Community Action Program, The Salvation Army and other disaster victims.

“For a group of ‘little old ladies,’ we think we’ve done pretty good,” said member Marge Vatter in a news release.

The group is also looking for new members. Bring your needles or hooks and join them on the second and fourth Mondays of the month at Michael’s on Ben Franklin Road in White Township.

For more information, call Vatter at (724) 463-0822.



Indiana Regional Medical Center’s Centennial Building Project will expand upon the current services offered by IRMC with new operating room suites, a new intensive care unit, a post-anesthesia care unit, a 15-bed post-acute care unit, an endoscopy unit and a linear accelerator, as well as numerous structural and patient service upgrades to the current facility. Donations are being accepted by calling the Healthcare Foundation at (724) 357-8053 or by donating online at


The Tri-County Health Care Industry Partnership is offering 12 $1,000 awards to health care workers currently enrolled in RN and LPN programs.

Applicants must be employed in a health-related position on the due date of application. Employment may be full or part time or on a casual status. Applicants must also work or live in Armstrong, Butler or Indiana counties.

Due date for applications is Jan. 8 by 4 p.m.


Our recent obituaries included the following:

• Stanley Brodsky, 91, of Greensboro, N.C., formerly of Indiana.

For 50 years he owned and operated Brodsky and Co., a salvage company along South 13th Street Extension.

A native of Canton, Ohio, he lived his early years in New York City. But he graduated from Indiana High School and then served with the U.S. Infantry in World War II during the D-Day invasion of France.

Brodsky was very much community-oriented, holding several key positions with the American Cancer Society and chairing the allocations committee of the United Way of Indiana County, among other organizations in which he was involved.

• Shirley M. Fink, 73, of Indiana, who, along with her husband, Fred, owned and operated the Dairy Queen along on North Fourth Street. She was a familiar figure at the Dairy Queen, and anyone who ever patronized the store knew her, or who she was.


Rich Ebert, of the Blairsville area, was recently re-elected for a fifth two-year term as vice president of the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau. Ebert, 53, who, along with his brother, Bill, took over the family’s dairy farm that straddles Derry Township and Blairsville and added 180 nearby acres to the original 220 acres. They produce milk for Turner Dairy in Penn Hills.

Since 2004 he has served a vice president of the farm bureau and was awarded the 2009 Mid-Atlantic Master Farmer Award and the Keystone Farmer of the Year Award in 2007.


A “Santa’s Bag Sale” will begin next week at the St. Vincent de Paul thrift store, where customers can purchase as many articles that can fit in a paper grocery bag provided by the store for $5. In addition, Christmas decorations are now buy one, get one free.

The store will be closed the week of Christmas and will reopen Jan. 2.


Happy anniversary to owner Greg Frailey, whose eatery in Elderton, The Sandwich House, is celebrating its 28th anniversary this month. … Harvest Community Church in Indiana recently celebrated the “grand opening” of its new church on the fourth floor of the Indiana Theater building on Philadelphia Street. … Gas prices were at about $3.45 this morning. … Willie, our ex-shoeshine boy, says, “Be careful. If you allow success to turn your head, you may be facing trouble.”


Good evening!

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