News of Otsego County

Serving Otsego County, NY, through the combined reporting of Cooperstown's Freeman's Journal and the Hometown Oneonta newspapers.


Breaking News

Pumpkins Aglow On Village Hall’s Porch


Pumpkins Aglow On

Village Hall’s Porch

Siblings Eva Gibson, 12, and brother Patrick, 10, spent part of today carving pumpkins for the Pumpkin Glow, underway until 7 p.m. on the front porch of Cooperstown Village Hall.  Then, the two began examining the competition.  Pumpkins are being brought to the event throughout the hour, so there’s time to get over there and take a look.  Of course, COVID precautions are being followed, including masks and social distancing, and only a certain number of the curious get in the gate at any one time.  Inset is Janet Erway, executive director of the Cooperstown Art Association, which has been staging the Halloween event for a decade now. (Jim Kevlin/

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Teens Learn Cooking For Fall 10-26-20

Teens Learn Fall Cooking


TEEN SCENE – 5 p.m. Teens and caregivers are invited to learn delicious Fall Recipes. Free, registration for Zoom required. Presented by Family Resource Network. 607-432-0001 or visit

VOTE – 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Early Voting open. Meadows Office Complex, 140 Co. Hwy. 33W, Cooperstown. Visit for info.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Carved Pumpkins On Display 10-25-20

Carved Pumpkins On Display


PUMPKIN GLOW – 6 – 7 p.m. See artistically carved/decorated pumpkins for this Halloween season. Wear a mask, social distance, be safe. There will be no indoor gathering this year. Cooperstown Village Library. 607-547-9777 or visit

VOTE – 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Early Voting open. Meadows Office Complex, 140 Co. Hwy. 33W, Cooperstown. Visit for info.

Supporters Of OPD Parade Through Town


Supporters Of OPD

Parade Through City

Amy Smithling of Oneonta, above, addresses crowd members gathered at the former Christopher’s Restaurant site on Southside as they prepare for a parade earlier this afternoon in support of the Oneonta Police Department. “This is about the OPD and the support they deserve,” said Smithling. “This is not about us versus them. This is not a Trump Rally. This is simply a show of force to support the OPD!” Inset, Genesis Bushnell, Laurens, and Shannon Speenburg, Unadilla, wave the “Thin Blue Line” flag in support support as they fall in line with numerous trucks and cars, including firetrucks and cement mixers, joined led the parade with flashing lights and sounding horns on their path through the city.  The issue came to the fore when Oneonta Police Chief Doug Brenner removed the “Thin Blue Line” flag from the pole in front of the Oneonta Public Safety Building a few days ago. (Ian Austin/

With Long Lines Already, Early Voting Begins In Otsego County


Lines Form In Early Voting

For President, Other Offices

Early voting in Otsego County began Saturday morning at the county’s Meadows Office Building, Town of Middlefield, and a steady stream of voters lined up out the door and down the sidewalk to the parking lot.  Above, Christine Chen, Oneonta, signs in with Polling Inspectors Diane Ehmann, Worcester, and Sue Straub, Fly Creek. Morning drizzle did not deter voters from showing up, as seen at right by the line of masked, socially distanced voters wait to for their turn. This week, polls will be open at The Meadows 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday; noon-8 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday, and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. next Saturday and Sunday.  On Election Day, Tuesday, Nov. 3, polls will be open around the county 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.  (Ian Austin/

Jerry Jeff Walker, 78, ‘Mr. Bojangles’ Creator; On Historic OHS Team


Jerry Jeff Walker, 78,

‘Mr. Bojangles’ Creator;

On Historic OHS Team

Jerry Jeff Walker hoists his OHS Wall of Distinction plaque, awarded to him during his last local performance, Aug. 14, 2010, at the Oneonta Theatre. ( file photo)
A publicity shot of Jerry Jeff in his heyday.

ONEONTA – Jerry Jeff Walker, the Oneonta native who found country music stardom with his 1968 hit “Mr. Bojangles,” has died after a three-year battle with throat cancer, according to reports.

Born Ronald Clyde Crosby on March 16, 1942, in Oneonta, was a member of OHS Coach Tony Drago’s unbeatened, untied 1959-60 varsity basketball team.  He also formed his first band locally, The Tones. He graduated in 1960 and moved to New York City, then to Austin.

Angelina M. Koury 90; Husband, 3 Sons Among Her Survivors

IN MEMORIAM: Angelina M. Koury 90;

Husband, 3 Sons Among Her Survivors

Angelina M. Koury

ONEONTA – Angelina M. Koury, 90, died peacefully Thursday, Oct. 22, 2020, at the Albany Medical Center, surrounded by her loving family.

 She was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother, aunt, and friend to many, and was a life-long resident of the Oneonta community. She took pride that she lived in the same house on Park Avenue for over 85 of her almost 91 years.

Her family, and all those who knew her, will remember her for her kindness, and unconditional love. The four-legged feline and canine creatures of the world always held a special place in her heart, as well, as she would feed and befriend the neighborhood’s homeless kitties looking for food, and shelter.  Her beloved, “granddog” Ozmo, will also greatly miss her, as she would unconditionally hold watch over him in the absence of his owner.

COVID Cases Climb To 6 At Hartwick College

COVID Cases Climb To

5 At Hartwick College

ONEONTA – Three new cases of COVID-19 were reported this afternoon at Hartwick College, rising the total to five active cases on the campus after several weeks without a reported case.

“We still don’t know the origin,” said Paula Lee Hobson, VP, College Advancement. “But we are holding to the Social Compact and encouraging students to remain on campus.”

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Stream 3 Plays Online Featuring Local Performers 10-24-20

Stream 3 Plays Online

Featuring Local Performers


STREAMING – Theater returns with ‘An Evening of Lanford Wilson’ featuring 3 plays performed by local actors. ‘Days Ahead,’ with Gary Stevens, ‘A Poster of the Cosmos’ with Steve Dillon, & ‘The Moonshot Tape’ with Brooke Tallman-Birkett. Cost, $10 for 2-day steaming access. Presented by Stuff of Dreams Productions. 607-432-5407 or visit

VOTE – 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Early Voting begins. Meadows Office Complex, 140 Co. Hwy. 33W, Cooperstown. Visit for info.

Commission Backs Council Member’s Plan To Examine Offensive Plaque

‘We’ve Got Your Back,’ Murphy Told

Rights Commission Supports

Review Of ‘Savagery’ Plaque

By LIBBY CUDMORE • Special to


ONEONTA – The city’s Commission on Community Relations and Human Rights supported Council member Luke Murphy, First Ward, as he begins reaching out to groups about the plaque in Neahwa Park that refers to “Indian savagery

“I’m excited to say I have made contacts with the Oneida, Onondaga and Mohawk nations,” he said at this evening’s commission meeting. “I also have reached out to the president of the Daughters of the American Revolution. I want to make sure I have complete engagement of all parties before we proceed.”

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Turkey Dinner Take-Out 10-23-20

Turkey Dinner Take-Out


TURKEY DINNER – 5 p.m. Order delicious Roast Turkey dinner with all the trimmings for take-out only. Includes homemade pies. Donations/Reservations required. Middlefield Baptist Church, 121 Rezen Rd., Middlefield. To order call 607-547-9093 or 607-264-8042.

Turkey Trot 5K Goes Virtual, Honors Late Founder John Hayen

Turkey Trot 5K Goes Virtual,

Honors Late Founder John Hayen

ONEONTA – Helios Care’s annual Turkey Trot 5K race will go virtual this Thanksgiving, with the 10-day run dedicated to the memory of founder John Hayen, who helped plan and support the event in the years before his passing earlier this month.

“We are all deeply saddened by the loss of our dear friend John Hayen.  Many will miss him and his passionate spirit,” said Kelly McGraw, Helios Care’s Director of Access and Turkey Trot Event Director. “Dedicating the 2020 race to John will allow Helios Care to show our gratitude for the enthusiasm he brought to this event and his advocacy on behalf of hospice care.”

Sign Of The Season: Daffodil Bulbs Planted


Sign Of The Season:

Daffodil Bulbs Planted

The team from the Clark Foundation Greenhouses completed planting 1,000 daffodil bulbs this morning at the Cooperstown United Methodist Church at Chestnut and Glen, after completing similar annual autumn plantings in the past few days at the village’s other four churches, Christ Episcopal, St. Mary’s “Our Lady of the Lake,” First Baptist and First Presbyterian.  From left are Barry Shirley, Ray Miller, Curtis Hurley, Bob Schworn and Jason Swezey.  Insert, Hurley applies the “Dibble Board,” which creates indentations that allow the flowers to emerge in a tidy pattern in the spring.  The greenhouses are also involved in pro bono plantings around the village, from hanging baskets on Main Street to The Fenimore Museum and the Baseball Hall of Fame.  (Jim Kevlin/

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