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Fish frys in Hampton area gear up for a busy season

| Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018, 2:06 p.m.
There are multiple places available locally during Lent to get your Fish Fry fix.
There are multiple places available locally during Lent to get your Fish Fry fix.

When it comes to eating out during this time of year, fish frys definitely take the cake.

And whether one's fasting from meat, a common practice for those observing Lent, or just enjoying a good plate of fish, there are plenty of places to eat.

Here are just a few in the Hampton area, beginning with the local churches, including St. Catherine of Sweden on Wildwood Road in Allison Park.

• At St. Catherine of Sweden on Wildwood Road in Allison Park, diners will be treated to the dishes they have come to love over the years, as well as a few additions, Joanne Giovanni, safe environment coordinator and fundraising director for the church said. Their menu offers more than just the sandwiches, but shrimp, fish tacos and pizza as well. They also added haluski as requested.

She said unlike cafeteria-style, patrons can opt to sit down and get served by the 60 or so volunteers they have there per week. Ordering online is available for take-out or the staff will even run it out to you curbside “so you don't have to get out of your car,” Giovanni said.

Like most churches, their funds raised help to pay for various parish needs, she said.

The St. Catherine of Sweden fry is held from 4 to 7 p.m. in Farmer Hall, every Friday beginning Feb. 16, except Good Friday, which is March 30 this year. Call 412-486-6001 to order ahead.

• St. Mary of the Assumption Parish on Middle Road in Glenshaw is having a fish fry, all Lenten Fridays except for Good Friday. Adult and children dinners with drinks and desserts are available for purchase.

Laurie Exler, office assistant at the church, said they probably serve about 7,000 dinners over the course of the season, all run by volunteers.

“They have it run like a well-oiled machines. The lines flow very quickly because of the teamwork,” she said.

They offer the regular favorites of fried or baked fish, with a variety of sides, dessert and beverage. Children can get a choice of pizza. Call ahead at 412-684-1112 for pick-up in Marian Hall or get it curbside.

Both churches offer discounts for seniors.

• Hampton Township Volunteer Fire Department No. 1 on Duncan Avenue in Allison Park, has been holding fish frys for more than 40 years, according to Donna Cannon, of the VFD. Their seafood feast begins Feb. 14, which many churches observe as Ash Wednesday and the official start of Lent. Dinners are held from 4:30 to 7 p.m. also every Friday in Lent beginning Feb. 16 to March 23. However, on March 30, dinner will be held from noon to 7 p.m.

Their dinners feature fish sandwiches, shrimp, a combination platter, and even chicken strips with various sides. A la carte is available, too. Call 412-487-1114.

• A.W. Beattie Career Center Culinary Arts Department is hosting a fish fry for the fourth year in a row. Everything is made by the students fresh, as it's part of their program of study, according to Aaron Yurek, chef and culinary instructor there.

The fish is breaded and either baked or fried on site.

Students also serve the food in a restaurant-like setting. And take-out is available.

All proceeds go toward the Family, Career, Community Leaders of America vocational student organization, and will help each student pay their way to the conference in March. Individual cost for the students is $450, which they have to raise, he said.

The Beattie diner is open daily for lunch and dinner and average about 350 diners daily overall.

The fish frys there will be held every Friday in Lent except for March 16 as they are away at the conference. And there will be no fish fry on March 30, as the school is closed that day. Lunch is from noon to 3 p.m. and dinner from 4 to 7 p.m.

Natalie Beneviat is a Tribune-Review contributor.

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