News of Otsego County


NYSEG Adds Power At Cooperstown Distillery


NYSEG Adds Power At

Cooperstown Distillery

Two NYSEG crews have been at the Cooperstown Distillery all morning, increasing the power flow to the expanding manufacturing operation. “They’re giving us the amps we need,” said distillery proprietor Gene Marra. In the past few months, the distillery has expanded from one to four stills, which require heat to create a range of products from Glimmerglass Vodka to Beanball Bourbon. The distillery is planning expanded parking and adding a second floor of the building at Railroad and Leatherstocking to meet the demand. (Jim Kevlin/
Zakrevsky, Nick’s Diner Owner Named To Delgado Committee

Nick’s Diner Owner, Heegan,

Zakrevsky To Advise Delgado

The Goal:  To Help Small Businesses Prosper


KINGSTON –  Nick’s Diner proprietor Rodney Thorsland, Oneonta, as well as Jody Zakrevsky, Otsego Now CEO, and Otsego Chamber President Barbara Ann Heegan will represent the county on Congressman Antonio Delgado’s 19th District Small Business Advisory Committee, it was announced today.

All 11 counties in the district are represented.

“The district is home to more than 27,000 small businesses and self-employed owners, and I am proud to advocate on their behalf as a member of the Small Business Committee in the House of Representatives,” Delgado said.

New Cooper’s Barn Serving Ice Cream, Shakes, Hotdogs

New Cooper’s Barn Serving

Ice Cream, Shakes, Hotdogs

Proprietor Trish Rost, top photo,  center, is joined by members of her team, Lauren Koffer, left, and Keiko Shieber, in front of the new Cooper’s Barn, which opened Friday on Route 28 in Hartwick Seminary, serving ice cream, milk shakes, hotdogs and more.  Trish is partnering with Bob Snyder, Cooperstown, in the venture.  The barn-red paint  replaces the tan you may remember on Penguin Ice Cream, which the Hitt family operated for 14 years.  Inset left, Dakota Hitt, granddaughter of the former owners, tries out the new offerings this morning; with her is mom Crystal.   Try it out before the Dreams Park crowds arrive Friday.  (Jim Kevlin/

Unalam Goes International

Unalam Goes


Glulam Basis Of Sculpture

At Venice’s La Biennale Arte

Martin Puryear’s Glulam-based “Swallowed Sun” will be unveiled Sunday at La Biennale Arte in Venice, “the Olympics of the artworld.”  It was assembled in Unalam’s Sidney plant in collaboration with R.J. Millworks of Oneonta.
Puryear’s “Big Bling,” also made with Glulam, was set up in New York City’s Madison Square Park in 2016.

UNADILLA – Remember “Big Bling,” Martin Puryear’s Glulam-based  sculpture unveiled New York City’s Madison Square Park in 2016?

Sunday, “Swallowed Sun,” a new collaboration between Puryear and Glulam manufacturer Unalam of Unadilla will be unveiled in the U.S. Pavilion at La Biennale Arte in Venice, Italy, part of Puryear’s “Liberty/Libertà.” The sculptor was chosen to represent the U.S. this year at La Biennale.

“When the call came in to be a part of Martin’s sculpture team for this exhibition, we didn’t hesitate to say yes,” Unalam CEO Craig Van Cott said.  “The hardest part of all of this has been keeping the entire project a secret,” as required by La Biennale Arte, known as “the Olympics of the art world.”

Stagecoach Refrain: ‘I Can’t Believe It’

Stagecoach Refrain:

‘I Can’t Believe It’

Customers Awestruck To Discover

Popular Coffee Shop’s Expansion

Surprised customer after surprised customer entering the popular Stagecoach Coffee on Cooperstown’s Pioneer Street this morning kept saying, “I can’t believe it.” Chris Grady, left, and brother Matt, partners in the cafe, closed the shop last week for a few days with little notice of what they had in mind. When they reopened this morning, the store had increased in size by perhaps a third, expanding into the former Leatherstocking Group office on the north end of the first floor.  While the coffees and menu continue to be what customers have come to expect, the kitchen’s size has been doubled, and an extra cash register added to more swiftly serve customers. Check it out. (Jim Kevlin/
Oneonta Friendly’s Shut, Workers Find

Oneonta Friendly’s

Shut, Patrons Find

Several CNY Ice-Cream Outlets Close

Friendly’s at the corner of Main and Walling in Oneonta has closed.

ONEONTA – Patrons arrived at Friendly’s at Main Street and Walling Avenue this morning to find the store has closed.

“We apologize to disappointing you on this visit, but this location is now closed for business,” a sign posted on the door reads.

Friendly’s end locally appears to be part of Sunday’s closing of a number of outlets in the ice-cream-based chain across the region, including some around Syracuse and as far away at Buffalo.

In an email received a few moments ago, Friendly’s spokesman Hannah Arnold said, “Please note that employees were informed personally.  (They did not learn from a sign.) The company is working to support them with opportunities at other locations or severance payments and other assistance.”

Final Sale Packs McLaughlin’s

Final Sale Packs McLaughlin’s

Local Store’s End Reduces Chain To Single Norwich Site

Stephanie Parez, East Meredith, makes her purchase from Barb Mednansky and Dean Matthews during McLaughlin’s clearance sale.


ONEONTA – As the news that McLaughlin’s on Main Street was closing, shoppers poured in to peruse sales and say hail and farewell to Scott and Anna, who have run the downtown staple since 2016.
“We’re not going that much further (away), so please, stop on by,” Scott McLaughlin, president of the Norwich-based department store, told a customer as the closing sale reached a high pitch Friday, March 8.
Even veteran salesman Gordon Breslin, who fitted generations of Oneontans with new shoes since the days of Zimm’s, helped out.

Reducing Fires, Department Makes Village Better Place To Do Business

Reducing Fires,

Department Makes

Village Better Place

To Do Business

Ian Austin/ – Fire Chief Jim Tallman pauses by his department’s vintage 1952 Mack firetruck, Engine 4, which protected the village until 1995. today, it leads the department in parades.



According to Jim Tallman, Cooperstown Fire Chief, if you really want to know what’s good in a new town, go ask at the fire hall on Chestnut Street.
“Whenever I go someplace, I always stop in at their fire department,” he said. “I like to see what they’re doing, but I also ask for recommendations of where to eat and what to see. And people do the same here when they come in.”
As an unofficial branch of the Cooperstown Chamber of Commerce – and for its work in protecting and serving the community –

Plan ‘Transformative,’ But Details Still Fuzzy

Plan ‘Transformative,’

But Details Still Fuzzy

Nothing On File, And Officials Unclear On How $225K Will Be Used

Ian Austin/HOMETOWN ONEONTA – Cherie Welch, Oneonta, strolls down Main Street toward the Westcott Lot, passing 218-224 Main St., whose owner WHH Realty received $225,000 for a “Transformative” project. No further details are available.


ONEONTA – The DRI Project Selection Committee called the project “transformative” and awarded it $225,000.
But it turns out few details are available on what WHH Realty Corp., owned by city Planning Commission chair Anna Tomaino and her husband, Jimmy T’s proprietor Jim Tomaino, plan for 218-224 Main St.
Asked for details, Project Selection Committee chair Kim Muller, the former mayor, texted, “Some of the information you are looking for may be confidential … I’m trying to figure what level of detail I can share.”
She referred questions to the Tomainos and Mayor Gary Herzig.
Anna Tomaino said, “We want to develop that space for more businesses to move into. We want to see Main Street grow.”

HOMETOWN ONEONTA – Mayors Herzig and Muller announce the first DRI grants Tuesday, March 5, at Foothills.

Zakrevsky’s First ‘Town Halls’ Planned Tomorrow, Thursday

Zakrevsky’s First ‘Town Halls’

Planned Tomorrow, Thursday

ONEONTA – Jody Zakrevsky, Otsego Now CEO, has scheduled the first two “Town Hall” meetings he is planning around the county to discuss economic-development initiatives and get feedback.

• 5:30-7 p.m. Wednesday (tomorrow) at Hartwick College’s Shineman Chapel.

• 5-7:30 p.m. Thursday at Oneonta Town Hall, Route 23, West Oneonta.

Otsego Now’s Zakrevsky Plans Several ‘Town Halls’ To Discuss Local Economy

Otsego Now’s Zakrevsky

Plans Several ‘Town Halls’

To Discuss Local Economy


ONEONTA – Otsego Now CEO Jody Zakrevsky is planning a series of “town hall” meetings around the county, beginning at 5 p.m. Thursday, March 14, at Oneonta Town Hall in West Oneonta, he announced today.

Topics will include energy, but also how to obtain funding through state CFAs (consolidated funding applications), and economic- and community-development topics of interest.  Questions and comments from the public will be encouraged.

Bombers On The Horizon!

Bombers On The Horizon!

Sam McKissik, an employee with AJ Sign Co., Burnt Hills, finishes attaching the sign for the forthcoming Bombers Burrito Bar on the outside of 219 Main St. in Oneonta earlier this afternoon. Two large cranes were needed for the installation but did not cause any traffic delays. Construction on the interior is still ongoing. (Ian Austin/
Cooperstown Distillery Adds 2 New Stills, More

Cooperstown Distillery

Adds 2 New Stills, More

Cooperstown Distillery Distiller Daran Bottger, center, directs installation of a new 500-gallon still this morning at the Railroad Avenue plant. The still was one of two – the second is 150 gallons – installed to help meet demand, according to proprietor Gene Marra, at left.  The distillery also installed three new fermentation tanks.  Two lines in particular – Legacy Bourbon and Legacy Rye – sell out every year, Marra said. “It’s going to be a big turning point in who we are, what we are,” he said. The distillery celebrated its fifth anniversary in October. (Larissa Ryan/
Andela Planning $5M Development Outside Richfield

Andela Planning

$5M Development

Outside Richfield

Speaking To Chamber, Company Owner

Says IDA Site Leading Contender Of 3

Cynthia Andela addresses 30 members of the Richfield Springs this evening on her expansion plans. (Patrick Wager/

By PATRICK WAGER • Special to

RICHFIELD SPRINGS – Andela Products, the glass recycling company, is planning to a $5 million business park on 55-acres south of the village and to increase its workforce by almost 50 percent, company President  Cynthia Andela told the Richfield Springs Chamber of Commerce tonight.

“We are a diamond in the rough.  We have the energy. We are next to the pipeline,” Andela told 30  people gathered in the Richfield Lanes bowling alley.  At another point, she added, “Richfield Springs could be a really nice place for progressive businesses.”

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