December 5, 2013
Department of Conservation and Natural Resources
Bureau of Recreation and Conservation
Community Conservation Partnerships Program Grant Announcement
The Department is announcing over $38M for 201 grants to communities, municipal authorities, and non-profit organizations for recreation, park, and conservation planning; land conservation for parks, open space, and natural areas; and, park and trail rehabilitation and development. The Community Conservation Partnerships Program implements the priorities identified by Pennsylvanians as part of the Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan and this year’s funding includes grants in about 91% of the state’s counties.
Cambria County, $300,000, rehabilitation of the Cambria County War Memorial Arena in Johnstown City, work to include the renovation of the ice rink; installation of floor, heat tubing and ice floor control systems; ADA access, project sign and other related site improvements. John K. Dubnansky, 814-534-2697. ESF
New management team announced for War Memorial Arena
Johnstown, PA - October 16, 2013
JOHNSTOWN - Cambria County War Memorial Arena has been intertwined with Thomas Grenell's life for decades.
The Johnstown native grew up playing pee-wee hockey and attending rock concerts there.
He still remembers the days when the concourse walls were covered in bright orange paint provided by Bethlehem Steel.
His father, Dennis Grenell, served on the committee that previously oversaw the facility, which enabled him to learn firsthand about the day-to-day business operations.
The younger Grenell has worked at the arena for 17 years now.
And earlier this month, he achieved a longtime goal by being officially named the facility's new general manager.
"I just fell in love with the War Memorial," said Grenell.
At the same time, Karen Gregorchik was tabbed as the assistant general manager by the arena's promoter, SMG.
They already had been running the arena, along with its sister facility, the North Central Recreation Center, during the past few months.
Grenell had been serving as acting general manager since Mike Silva resigned from the GM position in September 2012. Gregorchik was the second in charge as the accounting manager.
"The charge is the same," Grenell said. "The goals are the same. It was nice to make it official, but really the focus and the goals are the same." He continued: "The challenge is awesome. Karen and I, I think, would both agree that it's certainly not easy, but it's a lot of fun, because you're always having to solve business problems with limited resources, so it forces you to be creative and repurpose a lot of things."
Other changes have come, too.
A point-of-sale system has been installed by Pomodo Tech LLC, enabling customers to now purchase items with credit cards.
"We've seen sales actually go up because now we're accepting plastic," said Gregorchik.
Event staffing has been taken over by Corporate Security Services.
"Across the board, we have not had one complaint," said Gregorchik. "We've had more actual appreciative customers, the patrons saying they are doing outstandingly well. I really believe that we did the right thing there."
Arena officials also hope to soon have new energy-efficient LEDs installed in the concourse by The Hite Co.
Cambria County War Memorial Arena Receives Prestigious Award
Johnstown, PA - April 21, 2011 - The Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, which is part of the federal Department of Defense, has awarded the Cambria County War Memorial Arena the prestigious Seven Seals Award. The award is "for meritorious leadership and initiative in support of the men and women who serve America in the National Guard and Reserve". The Seven Seals Award represents the Army National Guard, Army Reserve, Marine Corps Reserve, the Naval Reserve, the Air National Guard, the Air Force Reserve and the Coast Guard Reserve.
The award itself will be presented to Tom Young, Chairman of the Arena's Board Authority and Michael Silva, General Manager of the Cambria County War Memorial Arena prior to Friday's Johnstown Generals game.
Marty Kuhar, chairman of the ESGR's Mountain Area, nominated the arena for the award. ESGR's Mountain Area includes Cambria, Somerset, Indiana, Bedford, Blair, Huntingdon and Fulton counties and part of Westmoreland County. Kuhar states, "The Cambria County War Memorial Arena has been supporting the men and women of our military for over 60 years. It is most fitting they receive this Department of Defense award."
The nomination was approved by ESGR State Chairman Major General Wesley Craig. Major General Craig is also in charge of the Army and Air National Guard and Pennsylvania's Department Of Veterans' Affairs. The award is signed by Mr. Dennis McCarthy, Assistant Secretary of Defense (Reserve Affairs).