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News of Otsego County

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Chamber Kicks Off 2023 with ‘State of the State’ Breakfast Event

Chamber Kicks Off 2023 with
‘State of the State’ Breakfast Event

By CASPAR EWIG
ONEONTA

It was a sellout crowd last Friday, February 20, as the Otsego County Chamber of Commerce hosted its annual “State of the State” networking breakfast. The conference, which took place in the Otsego Grille of SUNY Oneonta’s Morris Hall, was introduced by Sean Lewis, president and chief executive officer of the chamber, as a vehicle to “allow the panelists a chance to express their view of where we are and their vision of where we are heading.”

The panel of eight public figures included New York State Senator Peter Oberacker and Assemblymen Brian Miller, Chris Tague and Brian Maher, whose constituents reside in various portions of Otsego County.

The county itself was represented by County Administrator Steve Wilson and Treasurer Allen Ruffles. Oneonta Mayor Mark Drnek and Village of Cooperstown Mayor Ellen Tillapaugh rounded out the panel.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: 01-27-23
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, JANUARY 27

Go ‘Into The Woods’
With Orpheus Theater

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THEATER—7:30 p.m. The Starstruck Players youth troop of the Orpheus Theatre presents “Into the Woods,” which brings together the classic fairytales from Rapunzel to Little Red Riding Hood for an adventure with a Big Bad Wolf, a princess festival, and a quest. Tickets, $15/adult. Held at the Foothills Performing Arts and Civic Center, Oneonta. (607) 432-1800 or visit facebook.com/OrpheusTheatre/

BLOOD DRIVE—1-6 p.m. Save up to three lives with the American Red Cross. Otego Community, 5 River Street, Otego. Register at redcrossblood.org

Student Photo Project Highlights WOFD

Student Photo Project Highlights
West Oneonta Fire Department

Nate Johnson, Nate Tessitore and Dylan Babcock are among the subjects of Heminway’s WOFD photojournal. (Photo by August Heminway)

By TED MEBUST
ONEONTA

August Heminway, a SUNY Oneonta senior currently pursuing a degree in political science and criminal justice, recently introduced an individual photojournalism project documenting the West Oneonta Fire Department. In addition to his extracurricular activities as president of the college’s Taekwondo Club, Heminway serves as president of the Photo Society. The scope of his project, Heminway noted, combined his academic and personal interests to display an aspect of local life he found to be underrepresented.

To view Heminway’s photo gallery, visit augustheminwayphoto.weebly.com.

SUNY Student Running for Common Council

SUNY Student Running
for Common Council

ANDREW HAMILL

By TED MEBUST
ONEONTA
SUNY Oneonta political science major and Maryland, New York native Andrew Hamill announced his candidacy for Oneonta Common Council in December, running as a member of his own party, “Unity for Oneonta.” Hamill hopes to bring accountability and pragmatism to the council, vowing to lead with a spirit of compromise.

“We need Common Council members who are willing, and dedicated to reason and building a consensus with their constituents,” said Hamill. “As a candidate for the Council, I intend to work with my constituents by listening to their concerns about whatever they have to say and try to work on a consensus that can bring the people together.”

Hamill, who previously ran for town council in his hometown, detailed a vast array of issues on which he plans to campaign.

In Memoriam: Frances H. Thayer March 31, 1921 – January 23, 2023
In Memoriam

Frances H. Thayer, 101

March 31, 1921 – January 23, 2023

FORK SHOP—Frances H. Thayer passed away peacefully in her sleep at the age of 101 Monday, January 23, 2023, at her home in Fork Shop.

She was born March 31, 1921 at the family home on Jones Road in Oaksville, the daughter of Christina Pushlar. In 1938, her mother married William A. Semrov, and he became her stepfather.

In her youth, Frances attended schools in Oaksville and Schuyler Lake. For many years she worked in the housekeeping department at the Mary Imogene Bassett Hospital.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: 01-25-23
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 25

‘Eight Men Out’ Showing
At The Village Library

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FILM SOCIETY—7 p.m. The Cooperstown Film Society presents a showing of “Eight Men Out” (1988) featuring special guest Simeon Lipman, from Antiques Roadshow, who will discuss his work with the family of Shoeless Joe Jackson (one of the players involved in the famous scandal). Village Hall Ballroom, 22 Main Street, Cooperstown. (607) 547-8344 or visit facebook.com/VillageLibraryOfCooperstown/events/?ref=page_internal

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: 01-24-23
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for TUESDAY, JANUARY 24

Paint At The Library

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SMALL ART—5-7 p.m. Teens and adults are invited for open painting with the opportunity to bring the finished product home, enter into an art show, or donate the finished work to be auction to benefit the library. Canvas & paint provided, free. Village Library of Cooperstown. (607) 547-8344 or visit facebook.com/VillageLibraryOfCooperstown/

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: 01-22-23
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SUNDAY, JANUARY 22

‘Community Voices: Our Immigrant Stories’
with the Friends of the Village Library

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SUNDAY SPEAKER—3 p.m. The Friends of the Village Library present “Community Voices: Our Immigrant Stories,” in which a panel of local and regional neighbors tell their recent and not-so-recent stories of immigration experiences. Upstairs Ballroom, Village Library of Cooperstown. (607) 547-8344 or visit facebook.com/VillageLibraryOfCooperstown/

Certified Passive Chestnut Crossing Open House Slated for Jan. 28

Certified Passive Chestnut Crossing
Open House Slated for Jan. 28

By DAN SULLIVAN
COOPERSTOWN

Josh Edmonds has decided where he will work to make a difference in the fight to reduce greenhouse gas emissions worldwide.

“The built environment accounts for 40 percent of global emissions,” said Edmonds in a recent interview. “Furthermore, two thirds of existing buildings will still be in use in 2050.”

Thus, the mission of Edmonds and his company, Simple Integrity, is to turn standing buildings into high-performance structures and build new ones that are carbon-neutral. With 80 percent of their projects consisting of existing retrofits, it’s clear where the passion lies.

In Memoriam Janet B. Fikes 1936-2023
In Memoriam

Janet B. Fikes

1936-2023

Janet B. Fikes

BURLINGTON FLATS—Janet B. Fikes, 86, of Burlington Flats, passed away peacefully on January 19, 2023 in Oneonta.

Janet was born on October 1, 1936 in Burlington Flats, New York. She was predeceased by the love of her life and husband of 67 years, Arleigh Fikes, and her parents, Ward and Wilma (Cole) Baulch.

She is survived by a daughter, Cindi Sue (Phil) Mancino of Rome; a son, Terry (Nanette) Fikes of Burlington Flats; grandchildren Steven (Dawn) Patafie, Kevin (Alicia Diamond) Patafie, Cassandra (Jared) Popiel, and Matthew (Ashley) Fikes; and great-grandchildren Peyton and Rocky Patafie, Cole and Jade Popiel, and Carter and Levi Malmquist (Fikes). She is also survived by nieces, nephews and close friends. 

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: 01-21-23
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, JANUARY 21

Superheroe Zumba-A-Thon To
Support The American Cancer Society

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ZUMBA-A-THON—10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Dress up as your favorite superhero and join the instructors for a fun Zumba session where all the proceeds go to the American Cancer Society to help stomp out cancer. Tickets, $10/person. Includes giveaways, fun and fitness. Laurens Central School, Multi-purpose Room, 55 Main Street, Laurens. Visit facebook.com/TheOtsegoCountyChamber/

In Memoriam Connie Elizabeth Gregory 1948-2023
In Memoriam

Connie E. Gregory

1948-2023

Connie Elizabeth Gregory

Connie Elizabeth Gregory, 74, of Garrattsville, New York returned to the arms of our Holy Father on Sunday, January 15, 2023 at her home, after a lengthy battle with pulmonary fibrosis. Connie is survived by her husband of 52 years, Henry C. Gregory; sons Shad (Mary) and Seth (Kiley); sister Laurie (Lenny) Mellilo; many nieces and nephews who affectionately called her “Auntie Connie”; and her beloved dog, Lily. She was predeceased by her parents, Milton D. and Elizabeth Sterusky Ward; her brother, Brian M. Ward; and her dear cousin, William Grose.

Carnival Returning Next Month

Carnival Returning Next Month

By DANIEL FRANCIS
COOPERSTOWN

Now in its 55th year, the Cooperstown Winter Carnival blows back into our community on the cold, wintery winds that February brings year in and year out. Luckily, the volunteer-based Winter Carnival Committee has plans to warm the spirits of carnival goers with both fresh and familiar offerings throughout the duration of this year’s event.

After what felt like an eternity, albeit just two years of dormancy, the Winter Carnival returns during the first week of February. Kicking off on Thursday evening, February 2 with hot chocolate-fueled fireworks over a lakeside viewing party at The Otesaga Resort Hotel—and continuing until Sunday, February 5 with “Grilled Cheese for a Good Cause”—there is plenty fun and enjoyment to be had by all who attend. The schedule includes such fan-favorites as “The Bob Smullens 5K/10K Race” and the “Lions Club Pancake Breakfast,” as well as first-time additions “Meet Your Local Heroes” and “Open Pickleball Play.”

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