News of Otsego County

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Benefit Run/Walk 07-18-21

Benefit Run/Walk


SUNDAE RUN/WALK – 8 a.m. Support local community center and get outside for 5k, 10k run, or a 2 mile walk followed by opportunity to make your own ice cream sundae, 50/50 raffle, more. Cost, $25/person. Register the day of from 7 – 8 a.m. Richfield Springs Veterans Club, 13 Lake St., Richfield Springs. 315-858-3200 or visit

Susquehanna SPCA celebrates opening of new facility with ribbon cutting, open house
Executive Director Stacie Haynes, left, and Board President Henry Gaylord Dillingham cut the ribbon at the new SPCA building. (Kevin Limiti/

Susquehanna SPCA
celebrates opening of new facility
with ribbon cutting, open house

By KEVIN LIMITI• Special to

OTSEGO Hundreds gathered outside the Susquehanna SPCA’s new facility in Cooperstown for a ribbon cutting ceremony Saturday, July 17, which they say would help better service the needs of animals who are homeless and in need of caring adoptees.

In spite of the humidity one young woman apparently fainted during remarks from State Sen. Peter Oberacker, R-Maryland the crowd was lively and enthusiastic, some bringing their own dogs to the ceremony.

Stacie Haynes, who as executive director has been at the forefront of this whole project, told the crowd this has been her “dream job” and joked she “hasn’t been home since.”

“I’m a dreamer and optimistic by nature,” Haynes said, but never imagined she’d be “standing on a multi-million dollar campus.”

Haynes thanked the “Shelter Us” capital campaign, which was largely responsible for raising the money necessary to build and open the facility, calling them an “all-star group.”

The Shelter Us Capital Campaign was able to secure a grant from the New York State Animal Capital Fund from the Department of Agriculture and Markets in order to move the facility to state Route 28 near Cooperstown.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Susquehanna SPCA Opens New Building 07-17-21

Susquehanna SPCA Opens New Building


GRAND OPENING – 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Celebrate the opening of the Susquehanna SPCA’s new complex with ribbon cutting (10:45 a.m.) and an open house. Come explore the new facility, meet some cute animals (maybe take one home?) and more. Registration encouraged. Susquehanna SPCA, 5082-5088 St. Hwy. 28, Cooperstown. 607-547-8111 or visit

Joseph E. Pidgeon, 82 August 19, 1938 – July 14, 2021

In Memoriam

Joseph E. Pidgeon, 82

August 19, 1938 – July 14, 2021

Joseph E. Pidgeon

ONEONTA – Joseph E. Pidgeon, 82, passed away at home with family by his side on July 14, 2021.

He was born August 19, 1938 in Oneonta, the son of Charles V. and Gladys I (Salisbury) Pidgeon.
He married Donna M. Craver on February 4, 1961.

Joseph graduated from Oneonta High School, Class of 1956.  He was employed as a beer hauler for WR Elwood & Son, Oneonta.   He was a professional fire fighter for the City of Oneonta Fire Department for 34 years, retiring as a captain.  He also was an electrician with Leo Grande Electric in Oneonta.

Joseph was a member of IAFF Local 2408 Oneonta Professional Firefighters and BPO Elks 1312.

Douglas Stratton Fielder July 22, 1940 – April 28, 2021

In Memoriam

Douglas Stratton Fielder

July 22, 1940 – April 28, 2021

Douglas S. Fielder

Oneonta – A celebration of life service with military honors for Douglas Stratton Fielder will be held 3 p.m. Saturday, July 24, 2021 at the First United Methodist Church, 66 Chestnut St., Oneonta, with the Rev. Marti Swords-Horrell officiating.  The interment will follow at the church columbarium.  For the zoom link please contact the church at 607-432-4102.

In lieu of flowers, gifts should be given to the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation, PO Box 6003, Albert Lea MN 56007 or to the Douglas and Dorothy Scott Fielder Scholarship, c/o Ellen M. Blaisdell, 308 Netzer Administration Building, State University College, Oneonta NY  13820.

Online condolences may be made at,  Arrangements are with Oneonta’s only family-owned funeral home, Lewis, Hurley & Pietrobono at 51 Dietz Street.

Springfield Center Library receives grant to discuss broadband issues

Springfield Center Library receives grant to discuss broadband issues

STAFF REPORT • Special to

Springfield Center library received a grant of $3000 which goes to discussing issues related to broadband as part of Libraries Transforming Communities: Focus on Small and Rural Libraries, an imitative whose goal is to better serve smaller and rural community libraries..

The library will use the grant to take courses on how to lead conversations on how to improve internet access.

“We are so grateful to be chosen for this wonderful opportunity,” Hanna Conbeer, Library Manager, said in a press release.  “This grant will allow our library to get to know our residents better and help our community discuss obtaining broadband internet.”

The talk will take place on Friday, Aug. 20.

Hall of Fame launches YouTube series of historic moments

Hall of Fame launches YouTube
series of historic moments

The history of the national pastime stretches across multiple centuries. But the connections that link baseball’s early days to today’s game are always evident in Cooperstown.

Through its new YouTube series, the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum is sharing those connections with viewers at home, according to a media release.

The Hall of Fame is debuting a YouTube series, “Hall of Fame Connections,” produced by MLB Network and made possible by a grant from I LOVE NY/New York State’s Division of Tourism.

The series looks at the Hall of Fame’s collection from a new and exciting angle, with each episode telling a different story of how two seemingly unrelated artifacts in the museum’s vast collection connect to each other, crossing through generations of baseball history.

Schenevus, Cooperstown players make All-State softball teams

Schenevus, Cooperstown players
make All-State softball teams

Cooperstown sophomore Dani Seamon was named third team All-State in Class C. (Greg Klein/

The 2021 All-State team for softball honored a trio of Schenevus players, two players from Worcester and one player from Cooperstown and Morris.

The Dragons won the Section IV Class D title for the second time in school history, and first time since 1978. It was also the first time since 1995 that a team other than Afton or Deposit won the Section IV Class D softball title. The Dragons beat Marathon, 7-1, in the title game Friday, June 11, in Schenevus.

Schenevus senior shortstop Hannah Osborne led all area players, making the first team in Class D. Osborne plans to play college softball at Cobleskill.

Her fellow senior, Cassie Snyder, made the second team, and sister Sam Osborne made the third team for Schenevus. Snyder, the Dragons’ pitcher, plans to play college softball at Wells College.

AllOtsego people: Mattice excited about new city role
New Oneonta City Administrator Greg Mattice,
center, and Mayor Gary Herzig present Parks
Director Lou Lansing the ‘Employee of the Quarter’ award Tuesday, July 6, at City Hall. (Kevin Limiti/Allotsego)

AllOtsego people: Mattice excited about new city role

By KEVIN LIMITI• Special to

ONEONTA — Oneonta native Greg Mattice has begun his new role as Oneonta’s city administrator.

Mattice began his new position July 1, leaving his job as city engineer.

Mattice, who said he enjoys playing basketball and spending time with his family, earned a degree in engineering from Syracuse University in 2009.

“We’re a small city,” Mattice said. “I do a lot of technical work.”

Mattice said that his main priority is going to be increasing communication throughout the various departments.

“The first step is to make sure everyone is on the same page.”

The city administrator’s job will to be to oversee the various operations and coordinate between different departments in the city. The common council voted last year to amend the position following several unsuccessful attempts at fielding a city manager.

The administrator position will have less autonomy than the city manager and will report to the council.
George Korthauer resigned as city manager in January 2020. City officials have said they had not had a good track record with managers and wanted to reform the position.

Oneonta Mayor Gary Herzig said Mattice’s “knowledge and knowing people in the city” made him a great candidate. “He has a good vision for where the city needs to go in the years ahead. It was unanimously felt that he was the person who met the city’s needs at the time,” Herzig said.

Mattice had been the city engineer since 2015.

He said he was comfortable filling this role because he has “built good relationships with a lot of the department heads.”

“We work pretty closely with everyone,” Mattice said.

He said that he didn’t think he would be doing this sort of a job initially.

“I certainly didn’t get out of college thinking I’d be a city administrator or a city engineer for that matter,” Mattice said. “I think it’s just interesting and it keeps me on my toes. There’s something new every day.”

Mattice was a member of the Otsego County’s Energy Task Force and in 2017, Oneonta Mayor Gary Herzig gave him the key to the city in appreciation of his efforts in keeping the city safe during winter
storm Stella.

Editor Greg Klein contributed to this report. 

Clark gym becomes summer basketball gathering spot

Clark gym becomes summer
basketball gathering spot

By GREG KLEIN • Special to

Clark Sports Center Assistant Athletic Director Scott Whiteman, center, watches as Meghan Niles, left, and Piper Seamon do a basketball drill Thursday, July 8. Watching in the background are Cooperstown girls basketball coach Mike Niles and Gabby Woeppel. (Greg Klein/

MIDDLEFIELD — As summer began and COVID regulations eased, Clark Sports Center Assistant Athletic Director Scott Whiteman started getting more activity on his phone. It was the basketball athletes checking on open gym status.

“We couldn’t practice the last week of school, because it was finals,” said Piper Seamon, a 2020 Cooperstown Central School graduate and college basketball player at Hamilton College in Clinton.

“So, I was texting Scott a week before I got home, ‘Are you open? Can I work out?’”

In the off seasons of many sports, athletes go back to their college campuses to work with old trainers or scrimmage with young recruits. Around Otsego County, elite basketball players congregate at the Clark.

After COVID delay, Cooperstown teacher plans overseas trip for 2022

After COVID delay, Cooperstown
teacher plans overseas trip for 2022

By PATRICK DEWEY • Special to

Cooperstown Central School students gather for a group picture in front of Schonbrunn Palace in Vienna during a 2016 overseas trip with history teacher Jennifer Pindar.

For more than 15 years Cooperstown High School history teacher Jennifer Pindar has loved leading student groups on educational trips abroad, a tradition she will continue after the coronavirus pandemic canceled last year’s trip.

In 2022, Pindar will lead a student trip to London, Belgium and Amsterdam. The destinations were agreed on in consultation with educational travel company World Strides. Along with Pindar, students will be accompanied by tour guides from World Strides and parents and teachers who agree to chaperone. The school is not involved in this trip.

The itinerary includes Buckingham Palace, Big Ben and other attractions. Students will also take excursions around Brussels and Bruges in Belgium. In Amsterdam, highlights will include visits to the Anne Frank House and the Van Gogh Museum.

The Glimmerglass adapts: Festival performances to begin Thursday, July 15, with Mozart’s ‘The Magic Flute’
Glimmerglass Festival electrician Bryson Kiser works on the lights for the outdoor stage for this summer’s performances. (Karli Cadel)

The Glimmerglass adapts: Festival performances to begin Thursday, July 15, with Mozart’s ‘The Magic Flute’

The Glimmerglass Festival, home to the summer opera and other theater, will open Thursday, July 15 with “The Magic Flute” by Mozart.

The festival will have outdoor performances on a specially built stage, in order to accommodate
COVID-19 restrictions.

Francesca Zambello, Festival artistic and general director said in a me

dia release that the theater “reimagined” the Glimmerglass experience in order to safely showcase their works.

“While this move outdoors is primarily for the health and safety of our company members, audience members and community, it is in harmony with what people love about Glimmerglass — innovative art and performances in a beautiful location,” Zambello said. “We are extremely grateful to Andrew
Martin-Weber for making this outdoor stage possible, and we look forward to bringing amazing performances to you from the Andrew J. Martin-Weber Lawn Stage.”

The outdoor stage will be at the south part of the Glimmerglass’s Springfield Center campus, with socially distanced festival squares for spaced-out seating. Attendees are encouraged to bring blankets and lawn chairs with low profiles, so the performances can be enjoyed comfortably.

“The Magic Flute” is described by the press release as a “whimsical tale of love and wisdom with an original libretto from Emanuel Schikaneder.” It is directed by N.J. Agwuna and conducted Joseph Colaneri, with costumes by Christelle Matou.

“Il Trovatore” an epic love story which is co-directed by Zambello and Eric Sean Fogel with music
conducted by Joseph Colaneri, will open Sunday, Aug. 1.

“Songbird,” adapted from “La Perichole,” will have its first performance Friday, July 30.

“To the World” opens Friday, July 16. The show is a journey around the globe through popular musical theater hits. It stars Isabel Leonard,

William Burden, Alexandria Shiner, Michael Mayes and members of the Young Artists Program.
Eric Sean Fogel directs and James Lowe conducts.

“Gods and Mortals,” which opens Tuesday, Aug. 3, celebrates the work of Richard Wagner with
selections from some of his most popular operas, including “The Ring Cycle” and “Tannhäuser,” as well as some of his lesser known works, including “Die Feen.”

“At a time when the world can feel strikingly small — confined to a bedroom and a laptop — Wagner’s grand works remind us of feeling larger than life. His fascination with mythology and the natural world will propel us as we take the festival outdoors,” Zambello said in the media release.

The staged concert will star Eric Owens, Alexandria Shiner and Ian Koziara. “Gods
and Mortals” is conducted by Joseph Colaneri and directed by Zambello.

The season will also include “The Passion of Mary Cardwell Dawson,” a new play with music celebrating the founder of the historic and groundbreaking National Negro Opera Company and starring acclaimed mezzo soprano Denyce Graves in the title role.

Written by the Mark Twain Award-winning playwright and librettist, Sandra Seaton, the play includes selections from the repertory of the National Negro Opera Company and original music composed by Carlos Simon.

“Madame Dawson was an arts pioneer, a woman of many firsts, whose remarkable story had been all but forgotten until recently,” Graves said in the media release. “Mary Cardwell Dawson broke through incredible barriers to give voice to singers of color, creating opportunities that eventually brought them to major American opera house stages for the first time. It is an honor to champion her story — and that of the National Negro Opera Company she founded in 1941.”

Go to for more information and to purchase tickets.

Trailblazer Award given at City Hall to women who are ‘pillars of support’
Former Oneonta Mayor Kim Muller hugs Mayor Gary Herzig prior to receiving the Trailblazer Award at City Hall on Wednesday, July 14. (Kevin Limiti/

Trailblazer Award given
at City Hall to women
who are ‘pillars of support’

By KEVIN LIMITI • Special to

ONEONTA City Hall was packed with more than 50 people Wednesday, July 14, as four women received the Trailblazer Award, two for 2020 and two for 2021, for being “pillars of support” in the community.

The women who received the award were Stacie Haynes of the Susquehanna SPCA, former Oneonta Mayor Kim Muller, Oneonta High School teacher Cathy Lynch and City Judge Lucy Bernier.

Mayor Gary Herzig presented the awards.

Haynes thanked everybody in the room for the “very meaningful honor.”

“One way we can really bring people together is with animals,” Haynes said. “This really is an honor and I’m so grateful.”

Herzig said Muller was the “true definition of a trailblazer” and said when visiting state legislators, “they just want to know how Kim’s doing.”

He also called Muller a pioneer in environmental issues. “This was before being an environmentalist was cool.”

“It’ll come as no surprise that being a trailblazer is hard,” Muller said. She said being a trailblazer required a “tenacity and willingness to take risks.”

Muller said she was the youngest woman at the time to serve on the county board. She said some of the men would caucus in the men’s bathroom, so one day she decided to follow them in. Her story drew cheers from the crowd.

She called being mayor, “incredibly rewarding. It was an adventure and it was fun.”

Lynch founded the Students Against Destructive Decisions at Oneonta High School and Herzig said she “exemplifies everything we want in a teacher and person who looks after our young people.” She was also founder of the Sunshine Committee and sent valentines to every senior during the coronavirus pandemic.

Lynch said she was happy to be a part of the group of women who had won the award. “I don’t really think I fit in there, but I try,” Lynch said. “I’ve been very lucky because Oneonta is my home.”

Bernier said she was “very honored” and “very humbled to receive” the award and also “a little embarrassed. I don’t think I deserve it.” She said “leveling the playing field” has “been my emphasis” regardless of race or legal representation.

“I don’t know if I succeeded but that’s what I try to do,” she said. “If you forget someone’s humanity, it’s like they’re moving through some machine. … I don’t want to be a part of that.”

Bernier she she believes women working the frontlines during COVID, whether nurses or grocery workers, were “unsung heroes.”

“I accept this award for them as well,” Bernier said.

The names of those who won will be written on a plaque in city hall to remain indefinitely.

Stacie Haynes, SPCA director, presented with the Trailblazer Award at City Hall. (Kevin Limiti/



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