Mountain Top Welcome Club Seeking More Members
By REBECCA SODERGREN
Correspondent
mcgovern@century21.com.
NEW MEMBERS WELCOME-The Mountain Top Welcome Club is seeking new members who would enjoy socializing and working on community projects. Members of the club include, from left: Kristen DelGrosso, Jill Krovick, Dawn Clark, Pam McGovern, Allison Latagliata, Lucille Martinelli, Kerri Fey, Malena Gittler and Donna Smith.

The Mountain Top Welcome Club is looking for new members.

President Pam McGovern describes the group as “half social, half humanitarian” –and all women.

The linchpin is a monthly luncheon, held at noon on the third Thursday of every month at the Presbyterian Church of Mountain Top. Luncheon meetings include speakers and free babysitting.

But the group also holds a variety of social events and fundraisers for local charities, and there are also “clubs within the club,” McGovern said, including a dinner club, a night out club, a book club, a moms-and-tots group and a needlework group. For some of the social events, husbands and dates are invited, but the club membership is open only to women.

Through the state’s “Adopt a Highway” program, the Welcome Club picks up litter along a two-mile stretch of state Route 309 twice a year. The group also donates hats and mittens to child clients of the Mountaintop Food Bank, as well as providing the children with Christmas gifts and Easter basket treats. They bake treats for volunteer firefighters’ monthly meetings, and they also participate in joint service projects with Rotary and Kiwanis.

The group’s biggest fundraiser is an annual “Night at the Races,” coming up in February, which raises $8,000 to $9,000 per year for local charities. Three charities are chosen each year. This year’s beneficiaries were the Kirby Library, the Mountaintop Food Bank and Candy’s Place, A Cancer Wellness Center in Forty Fort.

The club also offers a $1,000 scholarship annually to a Crestwood senior who wins an essay contest. Last year the group had extra funds, so it awarded two scholarships.

Social events include a scavenger hunt throughout Mountain Top, a movie night and other fun. In December, a holiday party at a local restaurant replaces the monthly luncheon, and spouses and dates are invited.

The club was founded in 1969 as the “Mountain Top Welcome Wagon,” which provided welcome baskets for new people who moved into town. McGovern said people sometimes confuse the current club with its predecessor group, which leads them to believe only newcomers are invited to the luncheons, but that’s not the case.

“I’ve lived in Mountain Top since the sixth grade, and most of our board members have lived here for many years,” she said.

Speakers at the luncheon meetings address a variety of topics. Last month, a speaker from Lehigh Valley Health Network talked about breast cancer awareness. This month’s speaker was Chaz Balogh, a detective with the county district attorney’s office, discussing Internet security. Past speakers have addressed topics like gardening, health and finances.

The group has about 50 members now, but McGovern is hoping to attract more. Lunch at the monthly meetings costs $8, and there’s yearly membership fee of $20.

The group has a Facebook page at

mountaintopwelcomeclub/. facebook.Anyone com/ seeking more information can also send an e-mail to pam.