COVID doesn’t stop pyrohy makers at Holy Trinity Church

Local News

They've been pinching pyrohy since 1958 at Holy Trinity Church

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The coronavirus is not stopping or pausing a time-honored tradition in the Mahoning Valley. There’s plenty of pyrohy still being made.

They’ve been pinching pyrohy since 1958 at Holy Trinity Church – 62 years, and they only make one kind.

“Well, we’re traditionalists. All we have is the potato and there’s a potato and sauerkraut mix,” said John Terlesky, pyrohy maker.

Terlesky’s mother Mary was president of the Ladies Guild Society when this started. The church never got involved in the hype when others tried making apricot and strawberry pyrohy. But this is different than any of the previous 62 years, as the workers were careful to follow new health rules.

“The product hasn’t changed. We just have to work around the issues with 6-foot distancing and wearing masks,” Terlesky said.

The work didn’t change either, taking 400 pounds of potatoes and creating the mix. Then, taking scoops and putting them in the shell and pinching the edges to create the pyrohy – 4,000 were put together to complete orders.

Half of them will be sold at Colla’s and Rulli Brothers markets. The other half will be picked up Friday. COVID can’t take away the big benefit.

“The enjoyment would be the same because it’s the camaraderie. These people, most of them, are members of the church. But if you are not a member, they just volunteer,” Terlesky said.

Proceeds from the pyrohy sales benefit the church.

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