News of Otsego County

Cherry Valley

Letter from Chip Northrup: Inventions abound

Letter from Chip Northrup

Inventions abound

Cooperstown is famous as the birthplace of the Morse Code, the invention of organ transplants, and now, the invention of the Army’s new method of training soldiers to hit moving targets.

About ten years ago, Chip Northrup, a Texan that summers in Cooperstown, went to the Cooperstown Sportsmen’s Association to learn skeet shooting. In order to hit the clay pigeon, you have to know how far in front to point the shotgun, called the “lead.” No one could tell him exactly how far ahead to point, so, in a brainstorm, he came up with an idea to show the amount of exact lead on any clay pigeon, or any moving object, by displaying it in a virtual reality (VR) headset, as a holographic image in front of the target. Northrup explained how it works. “By practicing with this aim point on in VR, the user can see how far in front to aim. They shoot at the aim point with an electronic trigger, and hit the virtual clay pigeon. Once they have learned that in VR, they can go to the skeet range and hit real targets.” He grinned. “Maybe.”

Cherry Valley senior rental complex celebrates first anniversary

Cherry Valley
Senior Rental Complex
Celebrates First Anniversary

View of One-Bedroom Unit at Alden Park

Amid a continuing revival of downtown Cherry Valley, this past week the Alden Park Apartments in Cherry Valley celebrated its first year of full tenancy as an affordable rental housing complex for low-income area senior citizens. Located in the former elementary wing of the old Cherry Valley Central School at 2 Genesee Street, Alden Park Apartments consists of four one-bedroom and six efficiency units.

The project was developed with a $1.4 million New York State Homes & Com-munity Renewal Small Rental Develop-
ment Initiative (SRDI) grant by a partnership between the site owners, the non-profit Cherry Valley Community Facilities Corporation (CVCFC) and Otsego Rural Housing Assistance, Inc. (ORHA), a Cooperstown based non-profit.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: General Clinton Canoe Regatta 05-27-22

General Clinton Canoe Regatta


CANOE REGATTA – 5:30 p.m. The General Clinton Canoe Regatta returns this year with a weekend of races and events. Friday includes the Youth races for teens 11-18 and the generation gap races starting from the Sydney Fishing Access. The park will feature the rides, craft fair, and flee market with the Taste of the Regatta event including local food, entertainment, more. The 70 mile endurance race will be Sunday, May 20 and will start from Brookwood Point, Cooperstown. Public events will be held at General Clinton Park, 2520 NYS Hwy. 7, Bainbridge. Visit

Nelson Mondaca nominated for Culinary Student Chef of the Year

Nelson Mondaca nominated for
Culinary Student Chef of the Year

Nelson Modaca

We have a gem amongst us in Otsego County: meet Chile native Nelson Modaca, a 20-year Marine vet and rising culinary star.

Spoiler alert: he plans on opening a French-infused restaurant in our area in 2023!

Mr. Modaca is making a name for himself in the Hospitality and Culinary school at SUNY Delhi. He’s taking an honors class every semester in addition to his current academic schedule. He’s pushing himself to be the best; he will have a bachelor’s degree in Culinary Arts Management in May 2023.

“My ultimate goal is to open a restaurant when I graduate in May of 2023,” Mr. Modaca said. “We are looking in the Cherry Valley area. I’m looking for something that isn’t huge, that has a good space that I’d like to work in.  And it will most likely be a classical French Bistro.”

County’s municipalities lay out different strategies for federal aid

Oneonta Mayor Gary Herzig gestures to the millrace running through Neahwa Park that he hopes to use ARPA funds to connect to the Susquehanna Green Way trail. (Kevin Limiti/

County’s municipalities lay out different strategies for federal aid

By Kevin Limiti

How Otsego County municipalities use funds from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) varies as widely as the towns and villages themselves.

President Joe Biden signed the law in March 2021, giving federal relief dollars to state and local governments for COVID recovery

For the City of Oneonta, this means spending the federal dollars on renovating Neahwa Park. But for Cooperstown, it simply means covering only 10 percent of revenue lost mostly to a drop in pandemic travel.

Editorial: How was it? A big success

How was it? A big success


We salute the Cooperstown Central School’s varsity boys’ soccer team for a 2021 season that was a resounding success, a joy to witness, and a giant step forward on our slow walk ‘back to normal.’

We send that same salute to the Cherry Valley/ Springfield boys’ varsity soccer team, Cooperstown’s girls varsity swimmers, Oneonta’s boys’ varsity cross country runners, the Head of the Fish and Head of the Charles rowers, and every other school team and athlete who got out there and played your game.

Take a bow, too, you coaches, assistants, volunteers, parents, teachers, bus drivers, car caravan coordinators, and anyone who guided and supported players along their ways, then made sure the sports stepped aside for homework and other school duties.

Rescues get all the love at ‘Dog House’

Liz Keller gets a slobbery kiss from Layla, while Isaiah Bowen, assistant rescue director, smiles for the camera. (Tara Barnwell/

Rescues get all the love at ‘Dog House’

By TARA BARNWELL • Special to

About a year-and-a-half ago, Liz Keller bought Mossy Creek Kennel in Cherry Valley, changed the name to “El-Liza’s Dog House at Mossy Creek Kennel,” and adopted the motto, “The Bed and Biscuit Getaway.”

For someone dedicated to animal rescue, the ‘Dog House’ is a passion project.

“We’re so much more than just dog grooming, boarding, and training,” Ms. Keller said. “My background is mostly in animal rescue, specifically dogs.”

She grew up in Queens, New York, and volunteered with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) in Manhattan, then opened her own kennel in Sullivan County. She decided to attend veterinary school for an associate’s degree in vet science after holding a job in the banking industry.

Fire in Cherry Valley leaves one dead

Fire in Cherry Valley leaves one dead

Police and firefighters responded to a structure fire in Cherry Valley last night that caused the death of one person.

The deceased, Ellen Cantrell, 58, was located inside the travel trailer at County Road 34A.

New York State Police, Richfield Springs Fire Department, Cherry Valley Fire Department, and Middlefield Fire Department responded to extinguish the flames.

Cooperstown EMS and Otsego County EMS also responded.

According to a New York State Police media release, the fire is not thought to have been suspicious.


2021 Cooperstown Boys Soccer Team

In the front row, from left, are: Creighton Williams, Conrad Erway, Ben Agostino, Declan White, Dillon Burns, Riley Diamond, Cooper Bradley and Reisen Sheldon. In the back row, from left, are: Liam Spencer, Max Porto, Gavin Lesko, Wyatt Montana, P.J. Kiuber, Ollie Wasson, Colby Diamond, Finn Holohan, Aidan Spencer, Ethan Kukenberger, Charlie Lambert and Aidan Klein.

2021 Cooperstown Boys Soccer Team

Editor’s note: Hot off their exciting state championship win on Sunday, we invited CCS Boys’ Varsity Soccer Coach Frank Miosek to reflect on his team’s brilliant 2021 performance. Here’s what he wrote.


I have been the CCS boys’ soccer coach since 1988. Every summer I start to plan for the coming fall season. Before this dream job, I had another — I spent thirteen years at Cherry Valley as their first girls’ varsity soccer coach. Starting in 1971, I was a coach of youth soccer in Oneonta. So you can see I have a passion for the sport; as a coach and as a player: high school; college (Oneonta State 68-71), men’s travel Oneonta United, National Soccer Hall of Fame Team and numerous teams in the area until 2014.

Otsego Area Rowing to compete in two regional events

Otsego Area Rowing to compete in two regional events

BY TED POTRIKUS • Special to

Four members of Otsego Area Rowing (OAR) will go to Boston, Massachusetts this weekend to race in the world’s biggest two-day rowing event, the Head of the Charles Regatta.

Lang Keith, Laura Kilty, Joe Novitski, and OAR founder and coach Andrea Thies, a two-time Olympian, compete with international rowers in mixed-double and single-rower events taking place on the city’s famed Charles River.

One week later, OAR sends more rowers, including youth members Creighton Williams, Charlotte Feury and Isabel Dudek to the Head of the Fish event on the Fish River, a few miles outside Saratoga Springs. Thies, Alison Lord, Faith Gay and Abby Rodd will race in the Women’s Masters Quad.

The club, a not-for-profit organization founded in 2017 to introduce local residents to the sport, is based at Brookwood Point on Otsego Lake.

OAR is open to rowers of all ages and any level of experience. This year, OAR hosted more than a dozen adults new to rowing and a similar number of youth rowers during week-long summer camps. OAR racers come from Cooperstown, Oneonta, Cherry Valley, Richfield Springs and West Winfield.

“We try to find a way to make rowing more approachable,” Thies said. “A big part of our mission is to give access to the equipment, to knock down the barriers and work with people who might not think about rowing as a lifetime sport they can enjoy.”

OAR stresses a safety-first regimen focused on rowing basics, steering, proper procedure and navigation. The club’s leaders, Thies and Steve Bohler, are certified U.S. Rowing Level 2 coaches.

“When you’re out racing, it can get pretty intense,” Thies said. “It’s not necessarily a Zen-like experience. You’re going to pass or be passed by other rowers. You’ve got buoys, bridges, and other boats. On the lake, we coach our rowers to be aware of motorboats, swimmers, sailboats.”

Thies said she and the board members guiding OAR hope to expand outreach to area schools, and revisit adaptive programs with revamped equipment for rowers who might require additional assistance.

“Rowing really is for anyone who loves to be outdoors,” she said, recounting her own experience as a Paralympic coach.

“People here had been rowing on their own for years,” Theis continued. “OAR tries to bring them all together in an organized way. Little by little it’s starting to happen. So many people are pulling up their sleeves to literally build this club from the bottom up, and they make my own experience of rowing a joy.”

New Cherry Valley business focuses on art, crafts


New Cherry Valley business focuses on art, crafts

By PATRICK DEWEY • Special to

Coco & Cordelia, on Main Street in Cherry Valley, offers one of a kind goods, including handmade jewelry, heirloom-quality rag dolls, origami-style handbags and other locally made and curated artistic goods.

The store is owned by Diana Stiles, a self-taught fiber artist and jewelry maker whose creations comprise much of the inventory. According to the Fiber Arts Center of the Eastern Shore, fiber art is fine art made from fabric, yarns, and other textiles.

Betty Jean McCarthy August 4, 1924 – September 20, 2021

Betty J. McCarthy

In Memoriam

Betty Jean McCarthy

August 4, 1924 – September 20, 2021

CHERRY VALLEY – Betty Jean McCarthy passed away on Monday, September 20, 2021 at the Eastern Star Home in Oriskany, N.Y.

She was born on August 4, 1924 to Grace Swift Yarter and Levi Yarter in Hartford, N.Y. When Betty was three, they moved to Cooperstown and then to Cherry Valley. Betty graduated from Cherry Valley Central School with the Class of 1942. Betty worked for the Gilday Insurance Company then moved to New York City where she worked for Citicorp Bank. Betty loved being in the city!

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