News of Otsego County

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


Middle School Principal Will Fill Brindley Position

Yelich Retirement Sets Off Shuffle

Middle School Principal

Will Fill Brindley Position

By JENNIFER HILL • Special to

Coleen Moore at tonight’s meeting. (Jennifer Hill/

ONEONTA – Oneonta Middle School Principal Coleen Moore is being promoted to district director of Curriculum & Instruction, succeeding Tom Brindley who will become superintendent July 1, School Board President Bill Gau announced at tonight’s board meeting.

The current superintendent, Joseph Yelich, will retire on June 30, setting the changes in motion..

“I just want to say how appreciative and fortunate we are,” Brindley said the Moore’s promotion. “She has a level of expertise that will serve the district many years to come.  Congratulations.”

Moore has worked for the district for over 20 years.  She started as a student assistant teacher, taught sixth grade, worked as a library media specialist, and became the middle school’s principal in 2015.

Salvation Army Ceremony Marks Major’s Retirement

Salvation Army Ceremony

Marks Major’s Retirement

Col. Richard Munn, International Salvation Army representative to the United Nations, presents Maj. Sharon Harford, commander of the Oneonta post, with her certificate of retirement during a ceremony Saturday, May 18, at the River Street installation.  The flag bearers were Lt. Cols. Eugene and Edith Pigford.  Her official retirement date is June 1, but she will remain in charge until July 1, when she will be relieved by Majs. Roger and Cheryl Compton.   After 20 years of service with the Salvation Army, “it is with a  mixture of sadness and joy that I enter this new phase of my life,” said Major Harford, who has served locally for almost a decade.
2 Cooperstown Girls Win Boys Sectional Tennis Title

2 Cooperstown Girls Win

Boys Sectional Tennis Title

NYSPHSAA Section III officials today confirmed two girls on the CCS Tennis Team, sophomore Lindsey Trosset and eighth-grader Bradley Weldon, made history this week by becoming the first female doubles team to win a sectional title in Section III boys tennis.  They are the daughters of Mike and Sally Trosset, and Bill and Jeanette Weldon.  Lindsey’s sister, Kate, was the second girl to do similarly in boys singles.
Job Corps Honors Fallen Hero Heller

Job Corps Honors

Fallen Hero Heller

Chris Kuhn, Director of the Oneonta Job Corps Academy, addresses family, friends and firefighters gathered in ‘the octagon,’ a hallway interchange on the third floor of Oneonta Job Corps named in honor of the late John D. Heller, who lost his life in December rescuing his fiancee and their nephews from the Walling Street arson. “We love him and we miss him.” said Kuhn. “It is our hope that when people walk through this space they will see his story and be inspired.” Members of the Oneonta Fire Department were present, as well as Mayor Gary Herzig, who remarked “This intersection was always full of life, it is only fitting it should be named after him.” At right, Heller’s fianceé Amber Roe speaks beneath his photo. “This is where we met. We spent a lot of time here talking and it was here fell in love.” Photos and stories of Heller’s life and sacrifice, along with his helmet signed by loved ones, are now on display in the John D. Heller Memorial. (Ian Austin/

Job Corps Host Blood Drive To Honor John Heller

Job Corps Host Blood Drive

To Honor Fatal-Fire Victim

John D. Heller

ONEONTA – A community blood drive will be held in honor of John Heller, the former firefighter and Life Skill Supervisor who was killed in the Walling Street arson last December.

The community drive will be held 10 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 21 in the gym at the Oneonta Job Corps, 21 Homer Folks Ave, with the dedication of the John Heller memorial on the third floor octagon at 2 p.m.

National Expert Launches Today’s LEAF Pot Summit

National Expert Launches

Today’s LEAF Pot Summit

Ben Cort, illustrator of chlidren’s books like “Octopus’ Garden” who has been speaking nationally on marijuana commercialization, addresses a LEAF summit on the issue underway today at the Quality Inn, Southside Oneonta.   The workshop, which continues through mid-afternoon, will raise issues about the challenges the state will face if the bill to legalize pot now being considered by the state Legislature comes to pass.  Seated at left is LEAF Executive Director Julie Dostal and board president Tara Barnwell.  (Ian Austin/
23 Teams Take To Trails In NYS MTB Race

23 Teams Take To Trails

In 3rd NICA Bike Race

The woods around Oneonta High School and Wilber Park were filled with the sounds of skidding tires and cheering fans this morning as 23 teams from around the state gathered for the third race of five in the NICA (National Interscholastic Cycling Association) race series. This is the first time the event is being held in Oneonta.  Above, Mikeeli Hanson, Cooperstown, a member of the Clark Sports Center’s Otsego Composite Mountain Bike Race Team, flies past crowds along the course during the JV race. At right, Mayor Gary Herzig gives the countdown to the start of the JV Boys race at the starting line on the high school’s soccer fields. (Ian Austin/

It Was Day Of Resolve, Ending With Romance

It Was Day Of Resolve,

Ending With Romance

The Otsego County Relay for Life – a day of resolve – ended with romance, as Christopher “Justin” Haynes – the Oneonta DJ Justino, who emceed at the Relay and handled the audio needs – proposed to his girlfriend, Deanie Lord, from the main stage at Milford’s Wilber Park, as the evening came to an end. The two are no strangers to weddings – Justin operates his own business, DJ Justino Wedding Expert & Photo Booth Specialist, and Deanie has modeled bridal gowns at the annual Bridal Expo at Foothills. (Mark Spaziano photos for
Relay For Life Rebounds Under Sunny Milford Skies

Relay For Life Rebounds

Under Sunny Milford Skies

At times cheerful, at times tearful, the annual Otsego County Relay for Life is underway at this hour in Milford’s Wilber Park, after guests speakers shared inspirational stories, and Heather Henderson of Schenevus, in particular, gave a rousing call to fight the scourge that has taken so many loved ones from among us.  In top photo, leading off survivors on the first circuit of the track, Henderson, left, holds up the banner, joined by Tracy Baker, Cherry Valley; Art Boden, Cooperstown, and Laura Emmett, Oneonta.  Inset left, Otsego County’s freshman Assemblyman John Salka, R-Brookfield, shares the story of his daughter, Emmy, who developed brain cancer and passed away in 2015 at age 22.  Inset right, mom Elaine Kellogg marches with her daughter, cancer fighter Laurene Gage.  The ladies, from Burlington Flats, wave at cheering passersby when family members  joined survivors in the second loop.  The American Legion Riders and the Elite Dance Academy, both from Oneonta, participated in this afternoon activities.   The Relay continued until 10 p.m.  (Jim Kevlin/

Hundreds Throng 80 Booths At Cooperstown Spring Fling

Hundreds Throng 80 Booths

At Cooperstown Spring Fling

Taking advantage of the first fully sunny day in weeks, hundreds shoppers, strollers and the curious at this hour are making their ways through 80 booths of arts & crafts, books, handmade clothing and much more at the Cooperstown Rotary Club’s Spring Fling, underway until 5 on the Clark Sports Center’s front lawn. (Plenty of free parking.)  Above, Rick Jagels of Cooperstown tries his luck at the rubber ducky pond being operated by the Cooperstown Lions’ to raise funds for its Leo Club’s trip to the U.N. next spring.  Presiding is Deirdre (Donley) Crouse, incoming Lions’ president, and veteran Lion John Saphier.  Inset, Don and Rosie Hoag examine 48 gift baskets up for the asking at a Silent Auction.   There’s food, and also music:  Ah Coopella is performing now, followed by the O’Donnell School of Irish Dance at 2; Sky Parlor at 3, and Leroy Lytel at 4.  The Clark’s spring open house is also underway:  Sign up for a three-month membership and get the fourth month free.  (Jim Kevlin/

Delgado To Give Colgate Commencement Address

Delgado To Give Colgate

Commencement Address

Congressman Antonio Delgado at his 1999 graduation from Colgate University, where he will return to give the 2019 commencement address on Sunday.

HAMILTON – Congressman Antonio Delgado, D-19, will give the commencement address at his alma mater, Colgate University, this Sunday, May 19, the college announced today.

A 1999 graduate of the college, Delgado majored in philosophy and political science, graduating magna cum laude and earning Phi Beta Kappa membership.

He attended Oxford University on a Rhodes Scholarship, receiving a second degree in the school’s Philosophy, Politics, and Economics program, then returned to the United States to earn his JD from Harvard Law School in 2005.

Tree Planted In Honor Of A Foremost Citizen

Homer Osterhoudt Memorialized

Tree Planted In Honor

Of A Foremost Citizen

Members of the Cooperstown Department of Public Works pause from tending a tree planted at 1 p.m. today, Arbor Day, in honor of Homer Osterhoudt at 2 Walnut St., which he built and where he and his wife lived for decades. Attending were Osterhoudt’s son Darryl and his wife Patricia, as well as members of Homer’s church, Cooperstown Baptist. From left are Chris Satriano, streets superintendent; Bob Busse, parks superintendent, Jason Brengel and Lloyd Stilson. (Jim Kevlin/
Delgado Appoints 3 From Otsego County To Healthcare Pan

Streck, Kjolhede, Smith Named

Delgado Appoints 3

From Otsego County

To Healthcare Panel

Dr. Streck

Congressman Antonio Delgado, D-19th, included three Otsego County representatives to a 19th Congressional District Health Care Advisory Committee he announced yesterday to advise him on “skyrocketing costs of healthcare and on healthcare legislation before the House.”

They are Bassett Healthcare Network President Bill Streck, Dr. Chris Kjolhede, director of Bassett’s School-Based Health Center Program, and Sue Smith, Otsego County Health Department deputy director.

Chobani CEO Donates $50,000 To Pay Off School Lunch Debt

Chobani CEO Donates $50K

To Pay Kids’ School-Lunch Debt

Hamdi Ulukaya

NEW BERLIN – Alarmed over the threat of the Warwick, R.I. threat to stop serving hot lunches to students whose parents owed lunch money to the school, Chobani founder Hamdi Ulukaya donated $50,000 to the school to ensure all students receive a hot meal, according to The Providence Journal.

“Every child should have access to natural, nutritious & delicious food, so @Chobani is doing our small part to help pay this debt,” he tweeted yesterday afternoon from his personal account, @hamdiulukaya.

CSO Announces 3 Conductor Finalists

Candidates Will Compete In Fall

CSO Announces 3

Conductor Finalists

The Catskill Symphony Orchestra a few minutes ago announced the three finalists to succeed Chuck Schneider as music director/conductor: Silas Nathaniel Huff, Carolyn Watson, and Maciej Żóɫtowski. The three finalists were selected from an international pool of 73 applicants. Each of the candidates will conduct one of three concerts this autumn on Sept. 7, Oct. 12 and Nov. 16. Season subscriptions are available that would include these concerts, where attendees will be encouraged to provide feedback to help guide the final choice. Details at
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