Fox Chapel information briefs: Nature walks, grownup schooling, free laptop lessons and extra


Reed Smith’s 2021 promotion class includes two Fox Chapel area attorneys.

Christopher Brennan is a member of the Global Regulatory Enforcement Group and Jennifer Gardner is a member of the Global Corporate Group focusing on employee benefit and executive compensation matters.

Brennan is an antitrust lawyer who blends economic theory and competition law to help clients. He regularly defends multinational and global clients against monopolization, price-fixing and international cartel allegations.

Gardner’s areas of emphasis include qualified and nonqualified retirement plans, pension plans, multi-employer retirement plans, and health and welfare plans and arrangements. A significant portion of Gardner’s practice deals with employee benefits and executive compensation advice for transactions in which she represents both buyers and sellers in reviewing and transitioning their employee benefit plans.

The pair was among 61 to be promoted from across global offices.

Learn how to identify plants

Discover more about the plants and trees in Pennsylvania during a virtual program at Cooper-Siegel Community Library.

From summer leaves and seeds to winter nuts and fruits, learn the basics of how to identity the different trees and plants that grow in our area. The program is produced by Allegheny County Parks.

Register at

STEAM activities available for kids

Children’s STEAM activities are available for grab and go on Thursdays at Cooper-Siegel Community Library in Fox Chapel.

Staff will package everything needed to complete a STEAM project geared for students in K-5.

Themes include a paper plate snowman Jan. 28. The activities are available while supplies last.

For more information, visit

Nature reserve offers Wednesday walks

Beechwood Farms Nature Reserve in Fox Chapel has free, naturalist-led walks each week.

“Birds and More” begins at 9 a.m. each Wednesday at the site along Dorseyville Road.

For more information, visit

Great Backyard Bird count on tap

Join the Audubon Society of Western Pennsylvania for its annual Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC) walk at Beechwood Farms Nature Reserve in Fox Chapel.

The free event is from 10 a.m. to noon Feb. 13.

Masks are required. Learn more at

FCAAE classes available

Registration is open for Fox Chapel Area Adult Education (FCAAE) classes for the winter 2021 semester.

More than 30 classes are being offered online, including art, foreign languages, social media and yoga.

Zoom classes offer students the chance to learn a skill and ask questions from local experts.

FCAAE, founded in 1963, is an outreach program of the Fox Chapel Area School District dedicated to providing enrichment classes to adults at a low tuition.

One-night and multiweek classes are offered.

Step-by-step registration is available at

Fox Chapel area pre-K continues

The Fox Chapel Area School District is continuing its pre-kindergarten program for the 2021-2022 school year. This will be the third year for the program, which is housed at Kerr Elementary, and is open to students who turn 4 on or before Sept. 1.

Sessions run from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays and will have 20 students in a class.

Transportation is not provided.

Families must meet certain eligibility requirements, which are available at

Improve your Microsoft skills

Residents interested in learning more about Microsoft apps and skills for Excel, Word, PowerPoint and Windows 10 can visit for a list of free classes offered by retiree Mike Smialek.

Classes will be 9:30 a.m. to noon on Thursdays.

Using WebEx as the online sharing platform, students need access to the internet, Windows 10, the Microsoft Office 365 software or similar and a desktop or laptop computer.

Each class comes with a step-by-step handout and the files needed to complete the online exercises together. The class schedule includes:

• Excel Formulas and Functions on Jan. 28.

• Excel Macros on Feb. 4, Word Basics on Feb. 11, Word Intermediate on Feb. 18 and Word Advanced on Feb. 25.

• PowerPoint Basics on March 11, PowerPoint Intermediate on March 18 and Windows 10 on March 25.

Catholic school to host open house

Christ the Divine Teacher Catholic Academy in Aspinwall will have an open house from 2 to 4 p.m. on Jan. 30. Reservations are required to keep within social distancing guidelines. The school is along Brilliant Avenue.

For more information, call 412-781-7927.

Women’s Business Network to meet

The Women’s Business Network, which supports the success and growth of women in business, meets on the first and third Tuesdays of the month at 8 a.m. All meetings are being held online. To RSVP or for more information, contact Susan Kinger at 412-782-4848 or [email protected]

The All Virtual Chapter of Women’s Business Network invites you to attend one of their upcoming meetings, the first and third Wednesdays of each month at 7:30 p.m., via Zoom. For more information, contact Jennifer Pasquale at 412-908-1663.

Trib journalism scholarships available

Trib Total Media is accepting applications for both the Scholarship for Diversity in Media and the Jim Borden Memorial Scholarship.

The Scholarship for Diversity in Media is open to high school seniors who are culturally, ethnically or racially diverse and are planning to study journalism, communication or English writing at a four-year college or university.

The scholarship will include financial assistance of up to $7,500 per year for four years, a guaranteed annual internship with Trib Total Media and an offer for full-time employment upon graduation.

The Jim Borden Memorial Scholarship is offered to high school or college students attending — or planning to attend — a four-year college or university to study journalism, English writing or communication. The recipient will earn up to $30,000 in scholarship money awarded in annual installments of up to $7,500, an annual internship with Trib Total Media and an offer for full-time employment upon graduation.

Applicants for both scholarships can apply online under the Career & Scholarship Opportunities tab at

The deadline to apply is Jan. 31.

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