Community stars to be honored

STEUBENVILLE – The unsung heroes of the Tri-State Area will shine brightly Oct. 7 at St. Florian Hall in Wintersville.

That’s the night a special dinner will be held to recognize the Class of 2013 of the Herald-Star, The Weirton Daily Times Community Stars, Presented by Weirton Medical Center.

This year’s event, which will begin at 6 p.m., will stick to the same simple formula that has been followed since the program was started in 1998 – it offers a way to recognize those people who go out of their way to help others, not because it will place them in the spotlight but, simply, because it is the right thing to do.

Tickets for this year’s dinner cost $18 for adults and $14 for children under 10. The price of an adult ticket has been reduced this year, a change that should allow more people to turn out to recognize this year’s stars.

“The Community Stars program is all about honoring people for the good things they do in our community,” said Ross Gallabrese, executive editor of the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times. “While it seems that there has been a lot of negative news coming from our community during the past several months, it’s important to remember that our area is filled with great people, people who are always willing to help their neighbors – and those are the attributes we’re looking to recognize.”

The dinner has a fresh feel this year, thanks to Weirton Medical Center, which has signed on as the title sponsor. WMC’s participation has allowed the cost of the tickets to be reduced and for each recipient to receive a medallion which notes their selection as a Community Star. One side of the medallion denotes that the recipient has been selected as a Community Star, while the other side recognizes Weirton Medical Center as the presenting sponsor. A red ribbon is attached to each medallion, which will be presented in a keepsake wooden case.

“Weirton Medical Center is very excited to play a role in honoring the great people who truly make our hometowns the places they are. To each recipient, we say thank you and congratulations,” said Kelli McCoy, director of communications at WMC.

This year’s honorees include:

– Kyle Elder of Toronto, who is involved with the Jefferson County Relay for Life.

– Tom Fitzgerald of Mingo Junction, who is very involved with activities in and around his community.

– Betty Hasley of Rayland, a longtime volunteer at the Jefferson County Fair.

– Gloria Howard of Steubenville, a senior citizen who still finds time to help others.

– Cathy Llewellyn of Steubenville, who counts work on the Pleasant Hill School House Museum among her many activities.

– Rick and Mary Oddi of Burgettstown, who lead a Cub Scout Troop for children with developmental disabilities.

– Janet Polverini, a longtime resident of Toronto who now lives in Follansbee and is involved with many area organizations including the Jefferson County Animal Welfare League.

– Betty Powley of Bloomingdale, who volunteers with many groups, from her church to the Edison High School Band.

– Robert Pulice of Weirton, who goes beyond just being a good neighbor.

– Michael Thomas of Steubenville, who has helped to find clothing and food for those in need and is the founder of U.N.I.T.E.D. F.R.O.N.T., an organization created in the memory of his late son.

Each of this year’s honorees will be profiled in a special section that will appear in the Oct. 6 edition.

The deadline to purchase tickets for the event is Thursday. Tickets can be purchased during regular business hours at the newspaper office, located at 401 Herald Square in Steubenville. For information, call (740) 283-4711.