News of Otsego County

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

Farewell, Mrs. Claus!

Farewell, Mrs. Claus!

Mrs. Claus, aka Vera Stewart, seen at her post outside of JCPenney at the Southside Mall (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)

By IAN AUSTIN • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com

Steve Hughes, Gilbertsville, gives Mrs. Claus a big Christmas hug.

ONEONTA – The end of the Christmas season will mark the end of an era for a Southside Mall mainstay.

For over two decades, Vera Stewart, aka Mrs. Claus, has been volunteering for the Salvation Army by ringing bells and holding doors at her station outside of JCPenney, spreading cheer to holiday shoppers. Dressed in red velvet with white trim, the Southside Mrs. Claus has become a mainstay of the Christmas season to many visitors young and old.

“When they first asked me to be a bell ringer for the Salvation Army, I decided to try it.” said Stewart, “I began doing it only on weekends, then I went to five days a week.”

Christmas Comes Early At Community Dinner

Christmas Comes Early

At Community Dinner

By the end of the first hour, over 120 people had attended the Community Dinner at Oneonta’s First United Methodist Church this afternoon, with more continuing to come in.  Visitors like Andrew Winters-Bell, left, could enjoy plates of ham, turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, coleslaw, sweet potatoes, Chobani yogurt and a wide selection of pies served by Carol Heller, Scott Lewis, Terri Fisher, Ambrose Santiago and other volunteers from St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Saturday’s Bread and First UM. The event, usually held on Christmas Day, was early the last couple years so it would not conflict with the church’s Sunday and Christmas services. “Next year, Christmas will be on a Wednesday,” said event coordinator Ann Steen.  “So we are excited that next year it will be back on the usual day.” (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)

Christmas, Things Better Then Ever – Really!

Editorial for December 21, 2018

Christmas, Things
Better Then Ever – Really!

Handel’s “Messiah,” performed every other year by the Voices of Cooperstown at Christ Church – on Saturday, December 15, this was one of those happy years – brings to front of mind the inevitable light and darkness that is part of everyone’s life.
Amid the wailing and gnashing of teeth that has characterized American life since Nov. 8, 2016 – “dumpster fire” has just been added to Merriam Webster – a whole area of scholarship has come to the fore, compiling the facts that prove: The world is actually becoming a better place.

The Freeman’s Journal – The Voices of Coopers town receives a standing ovation at the end of the Saturday, Dec. 15, performance of Handel’s “Messiah” at Christ Church.

Here are some of the points Steven Pinker, the Harvard professor and author of “Enlightenment Now,” made in a TED Talk last April:
• For most of human history, life expectancy was around 30 years old worldwide. Today, it is more than 70 years old; and in most developed parts of the world, it’s over 80.

Sounds Of The Season

Sounds Of Season Ring

At Handbell Concert

Director of Music John Jurgensen, Oneonta, leads Alan Franks, Rachel Hansen and Dylan Sorensen and other members of the Buckingham Ringers and the Klipnocky Klangers in heir rendition of “Jingle Bell Rock”, “Frosty The Snowman” and other holiday favorites at the annual handbell concert earlier this afternoon at the First United Methodist Church. (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)

Spirits Of Christmas

Spirits Of Christmas

Fill Scrooge, The Musical

“Change your ways!” warns the ghost of Jacob Marley (played by Sean Sansevere, Oneonta) to a stubborn Ebenezer Scrooge (Casey Thomas, Oneonta) during today’s Sunday matinee of Orpheus Theatre’s run of of “A Christmas Carol Musical”  at Goodrich Theater at SUNY Oneonta. At right, Bob Cratchit (Jeff Moore, Oneonta) readies to go buy a Christmas turkey at market as Mrs. Cratchit (Dorothy Wisnewski, Oneonta) readies their son Tiny Tim (Lily Flynn, Oneonta) to accompany him. (Ian Austin/AllOTSEGO.com)

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, DECEMBER 14
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, DECEMBER 14

Christmas Music With Lute & Tenor

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CHRISTMAS CONCERT – 7:30 p.m. Concert featuring Frederic Chrislip, performing songs, lute solos. Admission, $10. Tickets available at Cooperstown Natural Foods, The Green Toad Book Store, Eighth Note Music Store. First Baptist Church, 21 Elm St., Cooperstown. 607-547-9371 or visit www.fredericchrislip.com

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SUNDAY, DECEMBER 9
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SUNDAY, DECEMBER 9

Celebrate Christmas, Victorian Style

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ANGEL TREE PROGRAM – Give the Gift of Christmas this holiday season. Adopt a family in need. Visit www.allotsego.com/angel-tree-program/ to learn how.

VICTORIAN HOLIDAY – 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Celebrate the holidays in the Victorian style. Main St., Sharon Springs. 518-860-5513 or visit sharonspringschamber.com

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, DECEMBER 8
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, DECEMBER 8

Candlelight & Carols

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ANGEL TREE PROGRAM – Give the Gift of Christmas this holiday season. Adopt a family in need. Visit www.allotsego.com/angel-tree-program/ to learn how.

CANDLELIGHT EVENING – 3 – 7 p.m. Experience magic of Christmas season with a candlelit museum covered in Christmas greenery, horse-drawn sleighs, carolers, bonfires, wassail, theater performances, more. Tickets available at door. The Farmers’ Museum, Cooperstown. 607-547-1450 or visit www.farmersmuseum.org/Candlelight-Evening

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, DECEMBER 1
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, DECEMBER 1

Holiday Celebration

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HOLIDAY FUN – 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. Begin the day with Home for the Holidays Parade down Main St., followed by 3rd annual Gingerbread Jubilee, 2nd annual Festival of Trees, Community Cookie Swap 11:30-3, photo opportunity with Anna & Elsa of Arendelle in Foothills Performing Arts Center, Oneonta. 607-432-2941 or visit www.facebook.com/DestinationOneonta/

UGLY SWEATER RUN – Noon. Run through Cooperstown rocking your ugliest holiday sweater, Followed by free beverages from Stagecoach cafe, Ommegang. Proceeds benefit Catskill Area Hospice. Begins at Santa’s House, Pioneer Park, Cooperstown. 607-547-2800 or visit www.clarksportscenter.com/events/2018-rockin-around-cooperstown-ugly-sweater-runwalk/

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 25
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 25

Pictures With Santa

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VISIT SANTA – Noon – 4 p.m. Visit & Take pictures with Santa & Mrs. Claus. Noon-2 take pictures with pets, 2-4 pictures without pets. Santa’s Cottage, Pioneer Park, Cooperstown. 607-547-9983 or visit cooperstownchamber.org/santas-house-in-cooperstown/

PRESENTATION – 6 p.m. Otsego Pride Alliance presents “Know Your Rights” with speaker from NYS government on LGBTQ+ rights in NYS, what to do when those are violated. Unitarian Universalist Soceity of Oneonta, 12 Ford Ave., Oneonta. 607-432-3491 or visit www.facebook.com/UUSOneonta/

CLICK FOR MORE HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 3
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 3

Day Of The Dead Celebration

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FAMILY PROGRAM – Noon – 2 p.m. Celebrate Latino Heritage month with Day of the Dead event. Make paper flowers, learn about Mexican traditions, listen to story time, more. Participants encouraged to bring photo of loved one who’s passed away. Designed for children aged 4-12 + family. Light snacks provided. Cooperstown Village Library. 607-547-8344 or visit www.facebook.com/VillageLibraryOfCooperstown/

FUNDRAISER – 10:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. Construct you cat a cardboard castle with Superheroes in Ripped Jeans. Materials provided. Bring goods or monetary donation. 3rd floor, Community Room, Huntington Memorial Library, 62 Chestnut St., Oneonta. 607-432-1980 or visit www.facebook.com/hmloneonta/

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 2
HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO for FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 2

Shop For The Holidays

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HOLIDAY BAZAAR – 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. ‘Tip Toe Through The Holiday’ features items for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Valentines Day. Includes gifts, decorations, crafts, more. Lunch available. Elm Park United Methodist Church, 401 Chestnut St., Oneonta. 607-432-6552 or visit elmparkumconeonta.org

CONTRADANCE – 7:30 p.m. Fun social dance featuring music by Tailwind, caller Hilton Baxter. Arrive at 7:15 for introduction to steps. Admission, $8/adult. First Presbyterian Church, 25 Church St., Cooperstown. 607-547-8164 or visit otsegodancesociety.blogspot.com

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