News of Otsego County


HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Discuss a sustainable workforce 07-27-21

Discuss a sustainable workforce


WORKFORCE FORUM – 9 – 11 a.m. Business owners are invited to discuss their employment needs, problems, and how to address them. Each will be given 2 – 3 minutes to discuss with elected officials including Congressman Antonio Delgado, State Senator Peter Oberacker, Assemblymen John Salka, Chris Tague, & Brian Miller. Free, registration for Zoom meeting required. Presented by Otsego County Chamber of Commerce. 607-432-4500 or visit

Preserve New York grant awarded to Otsego 2000

Preserve New York grant awarded to Otsego 2000

STAFF REPORT • Special to

Otsego 2000 will receive a $12,500 grant from the Preservation League of New York for their Preserve New York grant in order to fund a Culture Resource Survey in the City of Oneonta.

This survey will be used to help maintain and determine which historic buildings in Oneonta can be renovated.

“Oneonta’s neighborhoods encompass a wonderful range of historic and architectural styles from the late 19th to the mid 20th century, the heyday of railroads,” Ellen Pope, executive director of Otsego 2000, said in a media release. “We are so grateful to the Preservation League of New York State for their support which will fund this important step toward documenting and preserving these neighborhoods and enabling homeowners to take advantage of the NYS Homeowner Historic Tax Credit program.”

Oneonta, which was settled in the 18th century, has many historical buildings within its boundaries.


COVID Vaccines will be offered at Otsego County Fair

COVID Vaccines will be offered at Otsego County Fair

STAFF REPORT • Special to

A pop-up clinic  by the Otsego County Department of Health will be giving COVID vaccines at the Otsego County Fair.

The vaccines will be available from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug 3. and Friday, Aug. 6.

The available vaccines will be the Pfizer and the Johnson and Johnson.

“We’re excited to be a part of the event and to offer a convenient opportunity for folks to receive their COVID vaccine,” Heidi Bond, director of public health for Otsego County, said in a media release. “We encourage fairgoers to come see us for their vaccine, ask questions and take advantage of the other public health information and resources we will have at hand.”

People who get the vaccine will be eligible for prizes including a $100 gift card to Brooks BBQ among other things.


Connie Jean (Truex) Bennett Lifelong West Exeter resident, artist, Mets fan, grandmother.

In Memoriam

Connie Jean (Truex) Bennett

Lifelong West Exeter resident,
artist, Mets fan, grandmother.

Connie Jean (Truex) Bennett passed away peacefully on July 22 with her family by her side.

A lifelong resident of West Exeter NY, Connie was a loving mother and doting grandmother to seven beautiful grand daughters whom were the entire world to her.

She raised her family with her husband of 25 years, Rick Bennett at the family home that was the center of activity for family and friends through the 80’s, 90’s and 00’s.

Curtis C. Ackerman Jr, 87 June 13, 1934 – July 23, 2021

In Memoriam

Curtis C. Ackerman Jr, 87

June 13, 1934 – July 23, 2021

Curtis C. Ackerman Jr, 87, of Burlington Flats, NY passed away Friday July 23, 2021 in Cooperstown, NY.

Curtis was born on June 13, 1934 in Cooperstown, NY the son of the late Curtis C. and Mable Parker Ackerman Sr.

Curtis is survived by his loving wife of 64 years Joan Snyder Ackerman of Burlington Flats, daughters Debra Ackerman of Burlington Flats, Lynn Ackerman of MA, and Susan E. Ackerman of New Hartford, a son Curtis C. Ackerman III of West Burlington and his wife Susan, grandchildren Max Horowitz, Julia Horowitz, Sara Schallert, Dan Schallert, Meagan (Matt) Blankenship, and Samuel (Emily) Curtis, a brother Fred Ackerman of FL, and a sister Elizabet (Herb) Miller of SC. Also surviving are several nieces and nephews.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Classic Rock at Meadowlinks 07-26-21

Classic Rock at Meadowlinks


MUSIC ON THE MEADOW – 7 p.m. Come out for free music by the Brian Murphy Duo performing Classic Rock. Bring a chair and blanket, sit in your car, or roam the trails. Enjoy a relaxing evening out. Meadowlinks Golf Course, 476 Co. Rd. 27, Richfield Springs. 607-432-4026 or visit

Michaels, Montgomery among Hall Award winners
Ken Harrelson speaks Saturday, July 24, at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum’s Award Presentation in Springfield Center.

Michaels, Montgomery among
Hall Award winners

By GREG KLEIN • Special to

SPRINGFIELD — The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum honored five men for their contributions to the game Saturday, July 24, in a ceremony held at The Glimmerglass Festival and aired Sunday, July 25, on the MLB Network and on social media.

The Hall honored 2021 Ford C. Frick Award winner Al Michaels; 2020 Ford C. Frick Award winner Ken Harrelson; 2021 BBWAA Career Excellence Award winner Dick Kaegel; 2020 BBWAA Career Excellence Award winner Nick Cafardo; and 2020 Buck O’Neil Lifetime Achievement Award winner David Montgomery.

“Broadcasters and writers give fans a window into our national pastime,” MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred said. “They are in our homes. They teach the game to our fans.”

No one hurt despite tour bus fire, which closes 28

No one hurt
despite tour bus fire,
closes 28

STAFF REPORT • Special to

INDEX — Fire Department officials are reporting that there were no serious injuries despite a tour bus catching on fire south of Cooperstown on state Route 28 Saturday evening.

Dramatic eyewitness video shared on Facebook shows the bus burning from the lower back section on a stretch of Route 28 near Kevin’s Royal Auto in the town of Otsego.

Route 28 was closed from county Route 26 to county Route 11 as fire officials from Cooperstown, Fly Creek, Hartwick and more responded to the situation. The accident was cleared and 28 reopened by 6:30 p.m.

According to a Facebook post, the bus held a wedding party, which made their destination safely despite the diversion.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: ‘Patent Medicine’ industry in Oneonta 07-25-21

‘Patent Medicine’ industry in Oneonta


SUMMER SUNDAYS – 1 – 3 p.m. Learn about the patent medicine industry of the 1800s and the local family that manufactured the ‘Dimmick Kidney Cure’ with Amy Schulz and Jack Ewen. Masks required. Bring your own lawn chair. Front lawn, Swart Wilcox House Museum, Oneonta. Visit

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Lecture on life and art of Lavern Kelly 07-24-21

Lecture on life and art of Lavern Kelly


GALLERY TALK – 2 p.m. Sydney Waller will discuss the art and life of local Farmer/Artist Lavern Kelley, whose painting and wood carvings are displayed in the Smithsonian and the Fenimore Art museum. Free, space limited, reservations recommended. The Art Garage, 689 Beaver Meadow Rd., Cooperstown. 607-547-5327 or visit

HOF Awards Presentation to air on MLB Network Sunday, July 25 

HOF Awards Presentation
to air on MLB Network
Sunday, July 25 

STAFF REPORT • Special to

According to a media release from The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum on Friday, July 23, the annual Hall of Fame Awards Presentation will be broadcast on MLB Network at 12 p.m., Sunday, July 25, and will feature the 2020 and 2021 award winners.

Although the 2021 induction has been moved to a September date for an in-person event at The Clark Sports Center in the town of Middlefield, the Award Presentation will still take place Saturday, July 24. However, the Hall announced Friday that the show will air the next day on MLB. Normally held in Doubleday Field in Cooperstown, the Hall will only say this year’s Award Presentation will take place in a special television studio.

Al Michaels, the 2021 winner of the Ford C. Frick Award for broadcasters, and Dick Kaegel, the 2021 winner of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America’s Career Excellence Award, will be honored along with the 2020 award winners, including Frick Award winner Ken Harrelson, BBWAA Career Excellence Award winner Nick Cafardo and Buck O’Neil Lifetime Achievement Award winner David Montgomery.

SABR meeting to take place Sunday, July 25

SABR meeting
to take place
Sunday, July 25

The next Cliff Kachline – Cooperstown/Upstate/Central NY Society for American Baseball Research Chapter meeting will take place at 6 p.m., Sunday, July 25, at Tillapaugh’s, located at 28 Pioneer St. in Cooperstown.

Guest speakers will include; Bill Deane, Tony Morante, Pete Pagliaro and Mike Hauser.

Deane, an acclaimed baseball author, will talk about the life of chapter namesake, Cliff Kachline, who was one of the founding members of SABR in August of 1971. The winner of the 2021 Cliff Kachline Award will then be named.

HBO requests Paul Reubens (Pee Wee Herman) footage from his Oneonta childhood
Pee Wee Herman was known as Paul Reubens when he attended Bugbee School in Oneonta. (Vanity Fair).

HBO requests Paul Reubens
(Pee Wee Herman) footage
from his Oneonta childhood

STAFF REPORT • Special to

Via the Greater Oneonta Historical Society, HBO has asked if anyone from Oneonta has footage of Paul Reubens, better known by his stage name of Pee Wee Herman.

Reubens attended Bugbee School in Oneonta and participated in several plays. Producer Brian Becker contacted GOHS and asked them if they could put out a wide net to find someone who had footage of Reubens from his early childhood. According to a Vanity-Fair article, his father Milton owned a Lincoln-Mercury dealership. The Reubens family moved to Sarasota, Florida when Paul was in middle school.

The following is the request from Becker:

Do you have, or know someone who might have, film from Oneonta from the 1950s or 1960s? Brian Becker ( is working on archival footage for an HBO documentary on Paul Reubens (Pee Wee Herman) and is looking for general film of Oneonta, plus footage of a play titled “The Legend of Lelewala,” which was put on at Bugbee School. If you have any home movies or leads to someone who may have saved footage from all those years ago, please e-mail him at

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: ‘George Strong and the Clarkes’ 07-23-21

‘George Strong and the Clarkes’


SUMMER CONCERT SERIES – 7:30 p.m. Enjoy a glimpse of the musical landscape of early America in ‘George Templeton Strong and the Clarkes’ as recorded by George Templeton Strong, coupled with music by Antonín Dvořák. Cost, $20/adult. Hyde Hall, 267 Glimmerglass State Park Rd., Cooperstown. 607-547-5098 or visit

THIS WEEK — July 22, 2021


The Freeman’s Journal • Hometown Oneonta

July 22, 2021


Flood damage in Gilbertsville on Sunday, July 18, shows the extent of the problems left behind by Saturday’s storm. (Contributed by Janice Costello.)


Major flooding hits Butternut Valley

AllOtsego people: In Cooperstown, a female majority forms

Cooperstown & Around and City of the Hills

Inside The Paper

Susquehanna SPCA celebrates opening of new facility Saturday

Summer Music Festival to reopen with free concert August 10, at Fenimore

Student News

Model Student

It has been two years since 2017 Cherry Valley-Springfield Central School graduate Kaylie Yerdon graduated from Tompkins Cortland Community College, but her school is still advertising her success, as seen in this billboard Sunday, July 18, on state Route 13 near Dryden. Yerdon
graduated from SUNY Cortland this spring and will start working on a master’s degree in speech and language pathology at the College of Saint Rose in Albany in August. (Greg Klein/



Views From Around The State


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WAYNE MELLOR: What’s the cost of zero-carbon energy

McREYNOLDS: Our family secrets still feel haunting

History Columns

Bound Volumes: July 22, 2021

Hometown History: July 22, 2021


GEERTGENS: Writer explains ‘what schools should teach’

Editors Policy


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With induction delayed, HOF awards get Saturday spotlight


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Lights, Camera, Otsego County: Region prepares for its film closeup

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21 Railroad Ave. Cooperstown, New York 13326 • (607) 547-6103