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Big Al

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SPORTS
September 25, 1998 | by Bill Fleischman, Daily News Sports Writer
A guy spends more than 30 years in Philadelphia sports television, he should have a street, a studio, a camera, something named after him. A guy survives in television anywhere until he is 70 years old, he deserves a parade down City Line Avenue. For anyone over 50 to be wanted on TV these days is an upset. Al Meltzer is retiring today. His 32 years in Philadelphia television is believed to be a record for the city. Meltzer has been with Channel 10 since 1978 (he started on Sept.
NEWS
September 22, 1987 | By JOE CLARK, Daily News Staff Writer
Big Al wants to get the old gang together. Whiskers, Yabo, Bugger, Wild Bill, Slim . . . All of 'em. All the guys and girls who used to hang out at No Name, smoke "loosies" in Billy Bob's Alley, and swig quarts of "Schmidtos" and Ortlieb's on the sly out of brown paper bags on Friday nights. That was many, many swigs ago. And now Big Al is trying to put together a reunion of all guys and gals whose lives at one time revolved around a street corner in Kensington, a corner like hundreds of others in the city where young people would meet to end the day, to start a night.
NEWS
March 31, 1988 | By JIM NICHOLSON, Daily News Staff Writer
Alfred V. "Big Al" Rudzinski, a machinist and a decorated veteran of the Korean War, died Sunday of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was 57 and lived in the Kensington section of Philadelphia. Big Al, or "Alfy" as he was known as a youngster in the old neighborhood at 21st and Brandywine streets in Fairmount, was a skilled machinist and mechanic. He worked for the Inquirer for about 10 years, through the 1960s and 1970s, SEPTA and several other Philadelphia companies and on the DEW (Distant Early Warning)
NEWS
May 30, 1993 | By Josh Zimmer, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
"Big Al," his taut 6-foot-5, 210-pound frame illuminated under a bright Delran High School auditorium light, was disappointed at the turnout. "I guess this goes to show why our problems in communities and schools are (increasing) . . . because of the apathy of parents," he said to about 200 students and parents seated in the auditorium. After two days of preaching his highly emotional "Do Hugs Not Drugs" message to Delran's middle and high school students, Big Al - his real name is Al Szolack - had invited parents to join their children in a large support- group session May 18 to air problems and bridge emotional gaps.
FOOD
September 9, 1998 | by Jim Nolan, Daily News Staff Writer
So "Big" Al Benigno and Frankie "Blues" Valloreo were in this guy's basement on Fernon Street - this really dank, dark basement - with the dirt floor and the occasional flooding and one very important barrel of muscatel wine, just begging to be drunk. And why not? It had been maturing in oak now for a full year - an eternity to a South Philly winemaker. They drove the wooden spigot into the bottom end of the barrel with a nearly perfect strike, losing little of the product, which belonged to the Other Guy, who, they explain evasively, must remain nameless.
NEWS
September 22, 1987 | By JOE CLARK, Daily News Staff Writer
Big Al wants to get the old gang together. Whiskers, Yabo, Bugger, Wild Bill, Slim . . . All of 'em. All the guys and girls who used to hang out at No Name, smoke "loosies" in Billy Bob's Alley, and swig quarts of "Schmidtos" and Ortlieb's on the sly out of brown paper bags on Friday nights. That was many, many swigs ago. And now Big Al is trying to put together a reunion of all guys and gals whose lives at one time revolved around a street corner in Kensington, a corner like hundreds of others in the city where young people would meet to end the day, to start a night.
NEWS
June 9, 2013 | By Sam Carchidi, Inquirer Staff Writer
Sportswriter Bob Lyons was so organized, so diligent, that he wrote his own obituary and left it for his family to disperse to the media. Mr. Lyons, 73, an understated, dignified man who wrote several books connected to the Philadelphia sports scene, died Wednesday of heart disease. One of Mr. Lyon's five children, Rick, said his father left an obituary "not because he wanted to write it, but because he wanted it accurate. He started his career writing obituaries for the Bulletin, and he ended it writing an obituary.
NEWS
October 11, 1995 | By Ralph Cipriano, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The boys at Frankie Blues' clubhouse were operating at peak efficiency. Out on the back porch, where the bees were buzzing, Big Al and Tony the Cop were dumping 36-pound boxes of cabernet sauvignon grapes into an automatic crusher and destemmer. The machine pumped a mound of bare stems out the back and a stream of mashed grapes out the front. The grapes surged through a thick hose that ran through a cellar window. Downstairs, at the other end of the hose, Frankie Blues was up to his elbows in a 60-gallon vat of cold, foamy, pink and purple grapes.
SPORTS
December 30, 1997 | by Ted Silary, Daily News Sports Writer
After spewing smoke for a while, Mount McArdle finally erupted last night with 2 minutes, 51 seconds remaining at Wildwood Catholic High in a Big Al/Ray Martin Classic semifinal. When it did, Chestnut Hill Academy was trailing Pennsbury, 43-41. When the lava finished doing its definitive damage, the Blue Devils were down, 48-41, and well on their way to a 54-46 defeat. What infuriated coach John McArdle was a reach-in foul call against Ben Davis approximately 30 feet from the basket.
NEWS
February 15, 1988 | By BARBARA BECK, Daily News Staff Writer
On behalf of the faculty and staff here at Nightlife University, a fully accredited higher-education fabrication, I'd like to welcome you to our daily seminar: "Nightlife on the University of Pennsylvania Campus: What Is It, How Did It Get Here, Where Do I Park?" I'll be leading today's session, which focuses on the newly opened shops and cafe at 3401 Walnut St. As always with these nightlife seminars, there will be some homework - or, rather, some away-from-home work. If your thirst for knowledge has already taken you to, say, Cinnabon or Ribchicks or Benetton, you have a head start on the assignment.
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NEWS
June 9, 2013 | By Sam Carchidi, Inquirer Staff Writer
Sportswriter Bob Lyons was so organized, so diligent, that he wrote his own obituary and left it for his family to disperse to the media. Mr. Lyons, 73, an understated, dignified man who wrote several books connected to the Philadelphia sports scene, died Wednesday of heart disease. One of Mr. Lyon's five children, Rick, said his father left an obituary "not because he wanted to write it, but because he wanted it accurate. He started his career writing obituaries for the Bulletin, and he ended it writing an obituary.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 14, 2012
* DOOMSDAY PREPPERS. 9 and 10 p.m. Tuesday, Nat Geo.   "THOUSANDS IN Northeast still without power," read a headline on CNN as I was getting ready to write about Tuesday's Season 2 premiere of Nat Geo's "Doomsday Preppers. " Hurricane Sandy may not have figured in the end-of-the-world scenarios of the families profiled on the show, but unless you've been living under a particularly well-equipped rock, chances are there's something in your home that wasn't there a month ago, whether it's a fresh stash of D batteries or a case of canned soup.
NEWS
April 23, 2011 | By Wayne Parry, Associated Press
POINT PLEASANT, N.J. - He's no David Hasselhoff, and "Big Al" Wutkowski doesn't know any women who have one-piece red swimsuits. But the Point Pleasant sport fisherman and boater is becoming a real-life baywatcher. The American Littoral Society, a New Jersey shore environmental group, is enlisting him as its first Barnegat Bay guardian, sworn to be the eyes and ears of environmentalists and law enforcement on the endangered waterway. He'll be out on the water looking for illegal or dangerous boating activities, sources of pollution, and unapproved development along the coast.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 14, 2011
Saturday-Monday Young minds can explore This weekend is the Hagley's Invention Convention that will allow young people to invent, explore, examine, experience, and get excited about science and engineering. Events are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Sunday and Monday at Hagley Museum and Library in Wilmington. Children can build an invention using familiar household items such as cereal boxes, paper towel rolls, oatmeal containers, and more. The Hagley patent office will be present to give young inventors patents for the inventions they make in the Create-an-Invention workshop.
BUSINESS
October 5, 2007 | By Robert Strauss FOR THE INQUIRER
Bob Weintraub was enjoying retirement on his farm in Lower Gwynedd when his buddy Joel Goldstein started bugging him to go look at a franchised aquarium and pet-fish chain store up in Canada, Big Al's Aquarium Supercenter. Weintraub had first met Goldstein four decades earlier. Goldstein had been a customer since childhood at Martin's Aquarium, the business Weintraub and his father owned. Years later, they were surprised to find each other in the hallway of a motel by Philadelphia International Airport the night of their respective weddings.
BUSINESS
December 31, 2001 | By Claire Furia Smith FOR THE INQUIRER
Property owners try all kinds of fences when trying to keep whitetail deer from eating their gardens. They may also connect motion detectors to lawn sprinklers or alarms to frighten the animals. If those don't work, some searching for a solution find Al Benner. His Conshohocken company, Benner's Gardens Inc., sells polypropylene mesh fencing that can be stretched from tree to tree or from post to post. Since founding the mail-order company in 1992, Benner said, he has sold fencing and related products to more than 5,000 customers across the country.
SPORTS
September 25, 1998 | by Bill Fleischman, Daily News Sports Writer
A guy spends more than 30 years in Philadelphia sports television, he should have a street, a studio, a camera, something named after him. A guy survives in television anywhere until he is 70 years old, he deserves a parade down City Line Avenue. For anyone over 50 to be wanted on TV these days is an upset. Al Meltzer is retiring today. His 32 years in Philadelphia television is believed to be a record for the city. Meltzer has been with Channel 10 since 1978 (he started on Sept.
FOOD
September 9, 1998 | by Jim Nolan, Daily News Staff Writer
So "Big" Al Benigno and Frankie "Blues" Valloreo were in this guy's basement on Fernon Street - this really dank, dark basement - with the dirt floor and the occasional flooding and one very important barrel of muscatel wine, just begging to be drunk. And why not? It had been maturing in oak now for a full year - an eternity to a South Philly winemaker. They drove the wooden spigot into the bottom end of the barrel with a nearly perfect strike, losing little of the product, which belonged to the Other Guy, who, they explain evasively, must remain nameless.
SPORTS
December 30, 1997 | by Ted Silary, Daily News Sports Writer
After spewing smoke for a while, Mount McArdle finally erupted last night with 2 minutes, 51 seconds remaining at Wildwood Catholic High in a Big Al/Ray Martin Classic semifinal. When it did, Chestnut Hill Academy was trailing Pennsbury, 43-41. When the lava finished doing its definitive damage, the Blue Devils were down, 48-41, and well on their way to a 54-46 defeat. What infuriated coach John McArdle was a reach-in foul call against Ben Davis approximately 30 feet from the basket.
NEWS
May 24, 1996 | by Ellen Gray, Daily News Staff Writer
Janet Zappala is outta here. Ron Burke is moving to weekends. But the "Big" story at WCAU (Channel 10) is that 68-year-old Al Meltzer, who has anchored sports at the station since 1978, has lost his seat at the desk to former Eagles kick returner Vai Sikahema, who, starting Monday, will anchor sports at 6 and 11 p.m. Sikahema, 33, joined Channel 10 two years ago as weekend sports anchor. Meltzer, who had anchored sports at 11 a.m. and at 5 and 6 p.m., will become a full-time reporter, with the assignment of covering sports in-depth.
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