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Team effort produces shelter for Brooke Opportunity Center

July 23, 2012
By WARREN SCOTT - Staff writer ( , The Herald-Star

WELLSBURG - The efforts of three groups have enabled the clients of the Brooke County Opportunity Center to get a little fresh air and shade during these hot summer months.

The Wellsburg Civic League and Brooke County Easter Seals Committee provided funds for a shelter and patio for the center's Pleasant Avenue building, and Danny Hukill Contracting provided the labor.

Andy Snyder, supervisor for the building, said the 11 physically or mentally impaired clients have enjoyed going outside for lunch, weekly barbecues and other activities there.

Irene Reitter, chairman of the Wellsburg Civic League's community service committee, said, "My heart just sings when they (the clients) come out because they just love it.

Carol Churchman, the club's outgoing president, praised the committee, which also includes Robin Snyder and Sue Simonetti, for their leadership in the effort.

She said the project was completed over two years through the efforts of the two groups and Wellsburg city officials and the Brooke County Board of Education, the building's nearest neighbor, who supported the shelter's addition.

Its $4,890 cost was shared by the league, the Brooke County Easter Seals Committee and the contractor, who donated the labor involved.

It's not the first time the two groups have teamed to help the opportunity center. In 2002, they provided a shelter for its 22nd Street location.

Delores McFadden, a member of both groups, said the project was a good one for the Easter Seals Committee, which helps people with disabilities and of all ages to obtain wheelchairs, canes and other aids they need to live as normally as possible.

She said the group funds such requests through a mail solicitation each February to hundreds of Brooke County residents.

"Most people are very generous," she said.

The Wellsburg Civic League also has supported such causes as Brooke Cemetery, the Wellsburg 4th of July Committee and the Brooke County Public Library.

Its major fundraiser is a salad luncheon held each fall. This year's is planned for Oct. 27 at Brooke Hills Free Methodist Church, with other details to be announced.

The league's officers are: Barbara Wilett, president; Toni Taylor, vice president; Phoebe McMullen, treasurer; and Barbara Yoder, secretary.

Established in 1934, it has 35 active members and welcomes more. It meets at 7 p.m. on the fourth Tuesday of each month at the library. Yearly dues are $20.

(Scott can be contacted at

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