The Update | Youngstown Mob Talk on Stage at the Robins; Wahlburger’s Restaurant Coming to Casino

WARREN, Ohio – Youngstown Mob Talk, a two-hour discussion of the city’s organized crime history, will take place at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 9, at the Robins Theatre.

Hosts will be Johnny Chechitelli and James Naples III, who moderate the Youngstown Mob Facebook group. They will explore the Valley’s mafia history in a two-hour event that will include special guests Rick Porrello (author of “To Kill the Irishman”) as well as some familiar voices from the Crooked City podcast and a surprise “wiseguy.”

There will also be an audience question and answer period and a raffle of signed artwork by the late Jim Traficant.

Chechitelli was a researcher on Marc Smerling’s Crooked City podcast, which debutued this year and was one of the world’s most popular podcasts for several weeks. Crooked City tells the story of the mafia in Youngstown.

Tickets will range between $18 and $25 (plus applicable fees) and go on sale on Friday, Nov. 11, at 10 a.m. at and the box office, 160 E. Market St.

VIP packages are available for $75 that include access to a meet & greet prior to the show, Gold Circle seating and a limited edition “Youngstown Mob” shirt.

A presale will begin at 10 a.m. Thursday exclusively for members of Friends of the Robins Theatre. Information is available at the website and the box office.

Wahlburgers Restaurant to Open in Casino

AUSTINTOWN TOWNSHIP, Ohio – Wahlburgers burger restaurant chain will open a location inside the Hollywood Gaming Casino in Austintown by the end of the year, according to Kevin Brogan, spokesman.

The chain, which specializes in burgers and other sandwiches, has locations across the nation. The restaurant will be in the area the food court formerly occupied.

Wahlburgers was founded by Wahlberg family, which includes movie star Mark Wahlberg, pop singer Donnie Wahlberg, and chef  Paul Wahlberg.

The casino is also adding Sportsbook, a new restaurant and bar, in the upper level. Sports betting will become legal in Ohio on Jan. 1 and the casino will offer wagering.

Marc Lee Shannon to Release Book on Sobriety

AKRON – Marc Lee Shannon will release his first book, “Sober Chronicles: My Journey of Discovery on the Road to Recovery,” on Nov. 10.

The book, which will debut on the eighth anniversary of Shannon’s sobriety, is a collection of essays originally published in The Devil Strip between July 2019 and August 2021 as part of Shannon’s monthly Sober Chronicles column. It explores his path in long-term recovery and mental health issues and includes new reflections on his recovery.

To celebrate its release, the Akron-based singer-songwriter will headline the My Recovery Day Jam on Nov. 12, an event at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame featuring sober musicians sharing their messages of hope.

The event will also be livestreamed to treatment facilities, sober living facilities, hospitals and clinics with detox and treatment facilities, and other organizations that support those in recovery.

Shannon is an Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services Certified Peer Recovery Supporter who volunteers weekly at regional treatment and detox wards.

A veteran studio and touring guitarist, singer-songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist, Shannon has released three studio albums and performed with many well-known country, rock, and soul artists, most notably as a 25-year member of Michael Stanley’s band, the Resonators.

“Sober Chronicles” will be available in both paperback and ebook formats from Amazon as well as Shannon’s website,

Veterans Day Event at Westminster

NEW WILMINGTON, Pa. – Westminster College’s Office of Faith and Spirituality will feature retired U.S. Army Military Police Lt. Col. Phillip Lenz at the college’s annual Veterans Day program at 10:30 a.m. Friday, Nov. 11, in Wallace Memorial Chapel. Admission is free.

Lenz, who currently serves as the Westminster College director of public safety, will serve as the ceremony’s guest speaker. Lenz served as director of public safety and emergency services at the U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence at Fort Rucker, Ala., where he oversaw the police department, the physical security program and the largest fire department in the U.S. Army.

A Pittsburgh native, Lenz enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1989 and became an officer through Eastern Kentucky University’s ROTC program.

Playhouse Auditions for ‘The Irish’

YOUNGSTOWN – The Youngstown Playhouse will have auditions for its production of “The Irish and How They Got That Way” Dec. 16 and 17 from 6-8 p.m. at the theater.

The play is an irreverent history of the Irish through the  20th and 21st centuries through the eyes of Pulitzer Prize winning author Frank McCourt.

The case calls for two makes, two females and a pianist. Auditionees should be prepared to sing. John Cox is the director. Rehearsals will begin in February. Performances will take place March 24, 25 and 26 on the main stage.

Copyright 2024 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.