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New organization hopes to bring sense of community to Sharpsburg

| Wednesday, July 30, 2014, 9:01 p.m.
Jan Pakler | for Trib Total Media
Brittany Reno stands at the Sharpsburg playground. Reno is starting Sharpsburg Neighborhood Organization

Brittany Reno wants fellow Sharpsburg residents to connect and make a positive impact on their community.

Reno, 24, began the Sharpsburg Neighborhood Organization this month and is seeking support from the community.

The group will seek to bring the community together through volunteer projects and other activities. She previously helped organize “Sharpsburg Smiles and Tiles Day,” which brought children out to paint tiles on a mural that will be displayed in town.

“I want to promote the sense of neighborhood in the community,” Reno said.

She moved last year from Pittsburgh to the borough, and found a welcoming community.

“I met more people my first three days in Sharpsburg than I did in two years in Squirrel Hill,” Reno said. “Everyone is so friendly.”

Reno said she was drawn to Sharpsburg because she wanted to live in a city-like setting, but with a sense of neighborhood. “The city prices are not great and you also kind of sacrifice that sense of community,” Reno said.

Sharpsburg officials welcome the new organization.

Council President Karen Pastor said getting younger borough residents involved in their community is important for the town.

“We're really excited about it. It's nice to have a young person who is a resident of Sharpsburg who wants to volunteer, who wants to do good for Sharpsburg,” Pastor said.

The group is not accepting donations, Reno said. It is looking at groups to act as a fiscal sponsor, to help it receive grant money. The group also is working with the Allegheny River Towns Enterprise Zone on grant opportunities.

The borough's activities committee, run by residents, became active again earlier this year with the hope that holiday events such as a Christmas parade or fall festival could be held, as they were in past years. Reno said she hopes to work with that organization.

“It's possible a couple other events might go under the umbrella,” Reno said.

Information on the group is available at www.sharpsburgneighborhood.org.

Tom McGee is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 1513, or tmcgee@tribweb.com.

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