VASJ students brighten up the East 185th neighborhood for Christmas

For many students, the day after Thanksgiving is a relaxing day off school spent with friends and family. For a group of Villa Angela-St. Joseph High School students, however, the day after Thanksgiving was spent serving others at the La Salle theater and its surrounding storefronts on E. 185th Street.

On this unseasonably warm and sunny day, students spent part of their vacation day painting holiday scenes on vacant storefront t windows adjacent to the old La Salle Theater.

Top VASJ art students were invited by VASJ Art Teacher Jenn Allshouse to participate in the project. The selected students sketched their ideas and with the approval of Allshouse, assembled their teams to begin painting.


Freshman Madison Vargo was ecstatic to be invited to participate and recruited some of her classmates, Jessica Deveny and Forrest Bertosh, to assist. They all agreed that it felt special to use their creative talents to brighten up the neighborhood and make people happy during this holiday season.


 Juniors Emily Oligny, Kelly Tecco and Nicole Ouaddaaddaa all felt a sense of pride having their artwork displayed in the neighborhood which they live and attend school.


Painting the storefronts, initiated by Denise Lorek, Community Organizer for Northeast Shores Development Corporation, is one of several projects in which VASJ partners with Northeast Shores to give back to the community and help keep the neighborhood looking nice.

The next project is Breakfast with Santa which will take place at VASJ on Saturday, December 10, at 8 a.m. It will be hosted by Northeast Shores Development Corporation with the assistance of VASJ students.