News briefs from the Mayfair Civic Association

The cold, rain and wind kept many from attending last night’s Mayfair Civic Association, but President Joe DeFelice powered through the agenda nonetheless, keeping the meeting to a brief 40 minutes. Below are the highlights:

Mayfair Memorial Playground is the No. 1 issue,” DeFelice said, who assured residents that progress on the playground is beginning to move quicker than it had been. With a goal of $50,000, the organization has raised $3,000 thus far, though is in the process of securing grants.

And tomorrow, DeFelice said, Beatrice Seybold, the former financial secretary of the 1950s-based Mayfair Improvement Association will sign a letter to be notarized and sent to Sen. Specter, which will reassign a $500 bond to the MIA to the Mayfair Civic Association.

Since 1957, the bond has matured to $3,700. And since its original intent was to help build Lincoln High School, where the playground sits, DeFelice expects no problems having the bond turned over to the MCA. DeFelice read aloud the letter Seybold will sign tomorrow:

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Plans for the Fallen Heroes 5k run are in full steam, DeFelice reported. More than 100 people have already signed up, though the event isn’t until May 15. The price to run is a bit lower this year — $18, compared to last year’s $25 — but the participants still expect to raise plenty of money. The first $5,000 will be donated to the Hero Thrill Show, which benefits the families of fallen police and firefighters. The rest of the money will go directly to the playground project. Both the 5k and the playground will honor fallen firefighter John Redmond, who lived on the 3400-block of Shelmire Avenue.

Also on May 15 will be the May Fair and Community Day celebrations. The third annual May Fair will include sidewalk sales and live bands, while the Community Day will feature several informational tables and prize giveaways.

DeFelice is still looking for donations for the Fallen Heroes Run, specifically one type of offer: pretzels. An ambulance has been secured, as well as port-a-potties, and water, produce and waterice have all been donated, but DeFelice is still hopeful for a soft pretzel donation for the run.

DeFelice also addressed the current funding issues at the Mayfair CDC, which could potentially affect the many organizations using the John Perzel Community Center. “They don’t have the funding they once had,” he said of the CDC. But he and several others are writing letters as a testament to all the CDC has done:

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“To see [this center] not be here at all would be a major detriment to the Mayfair community,” DeFelice told those at the meeting.

The brief meeting ended with a zoning update.

It was announced that the former Nuts to You coffee store will officially open April 1 as Uncle Rich’s Waterice, serving various flavors of waterice and ice cream. An application for a beer distributor at Ryan Avenue and Leon Street was denied, after neighbors and civic members raised concerns of increased traffic, odd hours and limited parking for delivery trucks. A duplex on the 3200-block of Teesdale Street was approved. The structure was built as a duplex, but never legalized to be so.National Wholesale Liquidators off St. Vincent Street near Brous Avenue has been broken up into several stores, but DeFelice said he doesn’t have all the details on what types of stores will open there, or when.

Above all, he said, “We’d rather have a business than an empty storefront.”

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