No level of government has more impact on daily life than local government. That’s why my colleagues and I at Cranberry Township are passionate about pushing the limits of excellence to provide the best possible services to our residents and customers. However, being well-served is not a passive achievement; it is a collective undertaking. Through this blog, we offer our personal reflections on that assignment. And we hope it will help engage you in joining us on that same collaborative mission.
Posted on November 26, 2019 at 10:44 PM by Jerry Andree
The last few days provided amazing examples of the community spirit that makes Cranberry such a desirable place to live, work and play.
On Thursday evening our Board of Supervisors approved a series of items that put into action the final steps of the Route 228 Corridor Master Plan adopted in 1995: the MSA Thruway.
This Thruway will provide long-term benefits to the traveling public. It will avoid Route 228 from experiencing the well-known back-ups witnessed on Interstate 79 Northbound at Route 910, while also alleviating traffic on Route 228 itself.
The project is dedicated to the leadership and support of MSA Safety, the force behind the development of Cranberry Woods. It is also the last step in a partnership to build a mirror-quality development on the north side of Route 228 known as Cranberry Springs. Between these two high-quality developments, over 10,000 family sustaining jobs will exist.
Then Friday night in partnership with the Butler/Cranberry Eagle, a greatly enhanced Santa’s First Stop was launched, attracting well over 4,500 individuals. The Eagle arranged for over 15 magnificent ice sculptures to be on-hand, sponsored by a host of local organizations.
Ernie DiMartino of DiMartino Ice, the producer of hundreds of these types of shows, said he has never seen so many children at one of these events. That is what Cranberry is all about: bringing families together.
Cranberry is also about giving back, and that spirit was on full display Friday as attendees to the First Stop event packed a Township ambulance with toys, games, stuffed animals and dozens of other items. Those gifts will be given to Toys for Tots and will bring some holiday cheer to those less fortunate.
Friday night also showcased nearly 40 holiday trees decorated in the Municipal Center. Each tree represents the great work of the many organizations that make Cranberry such a desirable place to live, work and play.
I am so very proud to work for a community that values partnerships to advance shared visions. To sustain those partnerships requires honesty and respect for each, and this past weekend showed that those qualities are the DNA of our community.
If you have a comment, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted on November 1, 2019 at 10:53 AM by Jerry Andree
Our Township phones never stopped ringing throughout the day on Halloween with urgent pleas to either keep or change the date for Trick-or-Treat. After all, the forecast was for heavy rain and wind which, according to some, would ruin the kids’ candy, soak their costumes, and create a safety hazard for everyone. And besides, a bunch of other communities in the area had decided to change theirs to Friday or Saturday.
At the same time, we got plenty of impassioned calls urging us to keep the date at October 31, usually because the resident had made arrangements which would be disrupted or would even have to be cancelled, often at considerable cost and inconvenience, if we were to switch the date.
What people didn’t realize was the question had been resolved for us a long time ago. That’s because, some years earlier, we had a very similar situation occur on Halloween and, out of an abundance of caution, we did move the Trick-or-Treat time by a couple days. At the time, we thought it was the right thing to do. But it made a lot of residents really angry, and we didn’t hear the last of it for months thereafter. That’s when our Board of Supervisors made a decision: Halloween and Trick-or-Treat would henceforth be observed on October 31 – no matter what.
A few years later, it snowed on that date, and the kids had to plow through six inches of snow to collect their candy. It turned out to be one of the most memorable Trick-or-Treat nights ever. Nobody got hurt or frostbitten, and our public safety services were out in force, just as they are now, providing an extra layer of security throughout the community.
So, notwithstanding the pleas to change our Halloween observance to some other night, we stood by the Board’s calendar decision. And in a stroke of good fortune, the rain stopped right around 6:00 – the official start of the Trick-or-Treat – allowing hundreds of happy kids to circulate through our neighborhoods, without having to wear ponchos over their costumes, and enjoy the cool but dry evening air.
Cranberry is a very busy, activity-centered community with school events, working parents, vacation schedules, and more to balance. Arbitrarily moving fixed holiday dates doesn’t do anyone a favor; it just scrambles people’s schedules. Western Pennsylvania is a four-season climate, and precipitation is just part of the normal weather cycle here. So, in Cranberry Township, tradition trumps Mother Nature.
Posted on October 22, 2019 at 11:15 AM by Jerry Andree