Here is a letter from Tracey Smeltzer, director of media services at Derry Area High School:

“On behalf of the DAEA and the Derry Area High School Diner’s Club, I would like to thank the Derry Area Community for the donations toward the Christmas Dinner Box project this year. Your generosity continues to amaze us! This year, we distributed food to 140 families. Each family received two boxes (one perishable and one non-perishable) filled with food purchased through your kindness and generosity.

“I would like to give a shout out to the many DAEA members and friends who helped create lists, make phone calls, assemble boxes, pack boxes, carry and deliver boxes, because without a team effort this project would not happen. You all go above and beyond!

“We would also like to thank: Dan at Shop & Save Latrobe for placing the special order for us, US Foods, Gwen Kozar, Bob Dunlap, Dave Irvin and the maintenance staff, Fr. Sam Lamandola and Jean McDowell from St. Martin’s and its parishioners, Pastor Lola from Derry First United Methodist and the congregation, Menasha, and Rob Rockwell from the Pit Stop. Coaches Aidan and Don Bushey (and) Noah Lingis. I hope I have not forgotten anyone, if I have please note it was not intentional.

“On behalf of all of us, we wish you all a happy and healthy 2021. Stay well!”

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Christmas tree cycling will continue through Jan. 31. Local sites include Derry Borough garage near the salt shed on East First Ave. and the Derry Township Municipal Building, 5321 Route 982. Please remember to remove all decorations, lights, tree skirt, bags, etc.

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Derry Area School District 21st Century Community Learning Center Program Director Debbie Gray would like to share that the afterschool program (aft3r@dasd) will be offered virtually throughout the month of January.

Elementary students can join in on the fun from 4 to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 4 to 5 p.m. Friday on days school is in session. Secondary students are invited to attend from 3 to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday. The program is free to students in the Derry Area School District, grades K-12. A variety of STE(A)M activities are planned daily, ranging from FIT Club, Read & Work Out, Who Dunnit, NASA projects and more.

To register go to A follow-up email will be sent upon registration.

Need more information? Email Debbie at

Sign up today!

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This next item is a message from Paula Shean, secretary of Derry Presbyterian Church:

“The Derry Presbyterian Church, located at the corner of 108 Presby Way and North Chestnut St., Derry, (724-694-5710), will be hosting a takeout only chili dinner, Saturday, Jan. 16, from 2 to 6 p.m. or until sold out.

“All are invited to come and pick up a bowl of chili, cornbread, bottled water and baked apple dessert. The cost is $7 for adults and $5 for children ages 5 to 12. Children under the age of 5 are free. This is takeout only. pick up will be at the entrance of Fellowship Hall near the garage and kitchen entrance. We appreciate your support!”

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Derry’s Great Garage Sale dates have been set for 2021. The two-day event will be held Friday, Aug. 6, and Saturday, Aug. 7. Stay tuned in the future for further details!

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Bradenville United Methodist Church has shared a COVID-19 update. The church will resume its Sunday service at 10 a.m. Sunday, Jan. 10. Masks and social distancing will be required.

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A free fitness program is being offered to all Derry Area students and families.

Every Monday through Thursday, Heather Krehlik and Sean Myers conduct a fitness workout to get kids up and moving after having to be on the computer all day.

Students in both the middle school and the elementary school are encouraged to attend, regardless of fitness levels — join the group and get a workout in. Families are also encouraged to participate. Workouts start at 4 p.m. and are not too long. They are meant to give everyone time for a little physical fitness, mental fitness and some socialization amongst members!

You may use the link below in order to sign up. If you have any questions, contact Krehlik or Myers at the school 724-694-8231, ext. 2303.

This program is possible through the afterschool program:

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Meals will be delivered throughout the Derry Area School District via school bus.

Meals will be delivered to the following areas: Rite Aid Pharmacy; Derry Community Center; Don Street, at Dogwood Acres; Front Street, at 29th Street, Brenizer; Raymond Avenue, at Murtha Way; Mitchell Drive, at Holiday Acres office; W. Main Street, at New Alexandria Community Center; Route 981, at Newhouse Road, and Route 982 at Billings Drive, Sundial.

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Give the gift of reading and share the love of reading with your child. Sign up for the Dolly Parton Library today!

The Dolly Parton Imagination Library is free for all children birth-age 5 residing in the Derry Area School District. You may register your child online at imagination Give your child the gift of free books. Don’t delay. Register today!

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Derry Salvation Army’s Treasures for Children program was able to help more than 40 children in Derry this year. Thanks to all of Santa’s secret shoppers who made this program possible!

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Have a great weekend and let’s go Steelers!

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Derry Diary items may be emailed to

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