The Update | Youngstown Mafia History Discussion; Labra Brothers at Riverwalk

YOUNGSTOWN – With the Crooked City podcast currently ranks No. 7 on the Apple Podcasts chart, the Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County is taking a deep dive into Youngstown’s notorious mafia history. 
As part of its popular True Crime series, the library will host a discussion at 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. in Main Library’s meeting space. Tim Seman, genealogy and local history librarian, will moderate a discussion with local crime experts, including: 

  • Johnny Chechitelli, a Crooked City producer and researcher, and a filmmaker.
  • Paul Gains, Mahoning County prosecutor. 
  • Bertram de Souza, former Vindicator columnist.
  • Fred Viehe, Youngstown State University professor emeritus of history. 

Tickets are free, but registration is required:

Labra Brothers to Close Concert Series

NEW CASTLE, Pa. – The free Hometown Summer Concert Series concludes Friday, Aug. 19, with a performance by The Labra Brothers from 6 to 9 p.m. in Riverwalk Park.

The Youngstown-based Latin funk and soul band released its latest EP, “Waiting,” in April. 

Food options will include Annie Lee’s food truck and The Confluence coffee shop will also be open with its full menu.

VentiSei Winery, Nina’s Italian Ice, Popped Envy Gourmet Popcorn, Divine Butterfly Supply
and Hopes Majesty will also be represented.

Attendees are encouraged to bring a lawn chair or blanket to sit on in the park.

Warren Philharmonic Offers Violin Lessons

WARREN – The Warren Philharmonic Orchestra will again offer free violin lessons to a select group of Trumbull County third- through seventh-grade students.

The application deadline is Sept. 1 and the class will begin Sept. 18. The application form and related documents can be downloaded at or picked up at the WPO office, 154 N. Park Ave., downtown.

The Frank R. Bodor Strings of Joy program is part of the orchestra’s outreach to area schoolchildren, said Barry G. Dunaway, executive director of the orchestra. The orchestra will also perform a live concert for area students in October.

The orchestra will loan each Strings of Joy student an age-appropriate violin and provide individual, 20-minute lessons Sunday afternoons through May at Christ Episcopal Church, 2627 Atlantic St. NE. Occasional group lessons and performance opportunities will be scheduled as well. Printed music will also be provided at no cost.

Lesson instructor is Jenna Barvitski, a graduate of Youngstown State University’s Dana School of Music. Barvitski is an experienced music educator for grades K-12, having taught at Lordstown Local Schools.

For information, contact Dunaway at 330 399 3606 or

Baseball-themed Dinner and Film at JCC

YOUNGSTOWN – As part of its J. Newman Levy speaker series, the Jewish Community Center of Youngstown will host a dinner and a show from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Aug. 23 at the JCC, 505 Gypsy Lane.

The event will feature a baseball park themed dinner followed by a documentary on Jewish baseball legend,Sandy Koufax, with an introduction by Kenny Fibus.

Go to to register by Aug. 19.

‘Modern Day Mastodons’ Auditions

WARREN – Auditions for Kent Trumbull Theatre’s production of “The Impracticality of Modern Day Mastodons” by Rachel Teagle will take place Aug. 31 and Sept. 1 from 6-8 p.m. at the  campus theater, 4314 Mahoning Ave.

The play is an offbeat comedy about ambition, vocation, and restlessness. Auditions will consist of readings from the script. All students and community members are welcome to try out.

All characters aside from Jess will also play numerous smaller roles.

Puppeteers will also be needed to manipulate the mastodon puppet.

For information, contact Professor Eric Kildow at or 330.675.8829

Car Show at Caffe Capri

BOARDMAN – Broadway Recovery Services will present a car show Saturday, Aug. 20, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Caffé Capri restaurant and bar, 8000 Market St.

The event, free and open to the public, will include games, a 50/50 raffle and food available to purchase from Caffé Capri. Attendees interested in showcasing a vehicle must pre-register on the Broadway Recovery Service Car Show Eventbrite page; the cost is $10. Trophies will be awarded to the Best in Show, Best Classic American Muscle, Best Modern American Muscle (2000 and up), Best Import/Tuner, Best Exotic and Best Truck/Jeep/Off-Road/Specialty.

Persons interested in sponsoring the event are asked to call Broadway Recovery Services.

Founded in 2018 by lifelong Mahoning Valley residents, Adam Lonardo and Jason Kmentt, Broadway Recovery Services provides safe and structured sober recovery homes in  Youngstown and Salem for individuals struggling with addiction. Through Broadway Recovery Services, last year alone 92 residents received housing, food and transportation, as well as access to addiction recovery treatment, therapy sessions, job placement programs and healthy living resources.

Broadway Recovery Services relies on grants, donations and fundraising events. This fundraiser will help the organization open two more houses.

Lecture on John Wilkes Booth

LIBERTY – Traci Manning, curator of education for the Mahoning Valley Historical Society, will speak on John Wilkes Booth, who assassinated President Lincoln, at 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 20, in the meeting room of Denny’s restaurant, 4020 Belmont Ave.

The lecture is part of the William Holmes McGuffey Historical Society’s Memories of a Lifetime series.

Admission is $6 ($5 for WHMHS members).  Reservations are suggested; call 330 726 8277.

Manning spent six years working for the National Park Service in various Civil War parks, including Gettysburg National Military Park, Vicksburg National Military Park and Harpers Ferry National Historical Park before joining MVHS. 

While history has painted John Wilkes Booth as a second-rate actor, he achieved much popularity in his short career on the stage, working at theaters across the country. He was known as a matinee idol.

As the Civil War raged, his political beliefs pulled him in a different direction. His fame assisted him in gaining access to the president.     

Pictured at top: The Labra Brothers will perform at New Castle’s Riverwalk Park Friday evening.

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