News of Otsego County

Fly Creek

Fenimore Exhibit Brings Mary Nolan’s Art Indoors

Fenimore Exhibit Brings
Mary Nolan’s Art Indoors

By JIM KEVLIN • Special to

Artist Mary Nolan at the Railroad Avenue studio she shares with May-Britt Joyce and Maria Tripp. The dominant painting is “River Bend, Low Tide.” (Jim Kevlin/

Some 25 years ago, when she was Cooperstown Chamber of Commerce executive director, Polly Renckens held a meeting of people with space to spare in their homes.

“We have tourists,” Polly told the gathering. “We need some place to put them. If you have space for a B&B, consider it.”

Mary Nolan, who had been doing art as long as she can remember, received a call from a friend whose mother had a farm in the countryside around Fly Creek. “Would you like to manage a B&B?”

Nolan, who had vacationed in Cooperstown and liked it here, said yes.

In B&Bs, there are busy times and less busy times, and in the less busy times Mary took her paints and easel behind the house and began to paint the nature she saw – plein air, out of doors.

“Around here, it’s beautiful,” she said in an interview after The Fenimore Art Museum announced that “Water As Muse: Paintings by Mary Nolan,” will be this summer’s local exhibition.

Nolan’s works will appear among that of such notables as photographer Ansel Adams and the featured show, “Keith Haring: Radiant Vision,” containing more than 100 works of the celebrated
pop artist.

Max E. Lewis, 68; Fell In Love With Area, Never Left

IN MEMORIAM: Max E. Lewis, 68;

Fell In Love With Area, Never Left

Max E. Lewis

FLY CREEK VALLEY – Max Emory Lewis, 68, who originally came to Cooperstown in 1986 to install the Clark Gym’s bowling alley and never left, passed away at his home Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021, with his son and longtime friend at his side.

Max was born on Jan. 29, 1952, at his childhood home in East Hopewell Township, Pa. Max was one of five children of Geraldine Elizabeth McWilliams and Richard Millard Lewis. He graduated with the Class of 1970 from Kennard-Dale High School in Fawn Grove, Pa.

77-Year-Old Man Died Early Today In Fly Creek Fire

77-Year-Old Man

Dies Early Today

In Fly Creek Fire

FLY CREEK – The state fire marshal’s office is investigating a fatal fire that broke out at  5:29 this morning at 168 Jones Road, near Oaksville.

A 77-year-old man died in the fire, which broke in the rear of the one-story home, where the bedrooms are located, on the hillside of Jones Road, which cuts across from Route 28 to Route 80.

Two stepsons were at the scene a few minutes ago, but no further information was immediately available.

Gusts Fell Tree, Blocking Rt. 28

Gusts Fell Tree,

Blocking Rt. 28

Fly Creek Fire Chief Chris Vuolo stands sentinel at a tree limb that, buffeted by this morning’s high winds, is blocking Route 28 just south of Fly Creek at this hour. Northbound traffic is being diverted at Goose Street; southbound is being detoured at the blinking light. (JIm KevliN/
Peter L. Martin, 96; WWII Vet, Farmer, Active In Community

IN MEMORIAM: Peter L. Martin, 96;

WWII Vet, Farmer, Active In Community

FLY CREEK – Peter L. “Pete” Martin, an integral and beloved part of the Fly Creek community and life-long farmer, passed away early Saturday afternoon, Jan.18, 2020, at Cooperstown Center for Rehabilitation & Nursing.  He was 96.

Born July 22, 1923, in Gloversville, Pete was a son of Charles Edward Martin and Grace Vida née Odell Martin. From an early age he helped on his family’s Cloudlands Farm on Tansey Hill at Edson Corners in Milford.

WRBA: When Needed, Where Has Superman Gone?

When Needed, Where

Has Superman Gone?

To the Editor:

Where have you gone, Superman?

Whatever happened to the spirit of our long-forgotten caped hero fighting a never-ending battle for truth, justice, and the American way?

It is apparent that America has lost its way. It’s time to get our country back on track. It’s time to shed our divisive labels: conservative, liberal, Republican, Democrat. It’s time for all of us to embrace the label: American.

It’s time to seek truth. It’s time to seek justice. It’s time to seek the American way our forefathers dreamed of, the America our veterans fought for and the America our brave troops continue to fight for.

Democracy is a participatory system. We owe it to ourselves to become informed. We owe it to our country to embrace the spirit of Superman.

Fight for truth. Fight for justice. Fight for the American way.

Fly Creek


Explore Area Farms


FAMILY FARM DAY – 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Explore local farms throughout Schoharie, Otsego, and Delaware Counties. Tour, try products, learn about farming from fish farming to beekeeping, more. Pick up your farm guide from participating, farms, farmer’s markets, libraries, more in the 3 counties. Call 607-547-2536 or download guide from 

First UM Votes No On ‘Traditional Plan’


First UM Votes No

On ‘Traditional Plan’

By JENNIFER HILL • Special to

ONEONTA – Members of Oneonta’s First United Methodist congregation tonight approved a “We Refuse” resolution that rejects the United Methodist Church’s reaffirmation of prohibitions against gay marriage and gay pastors.

The “We Refuse” resolution says the “Traditional Plan,” approved, 53 percent to 47 percent, at the UMC’s General Conference last February in St. Louis, is “incompatible with God’s all-inclusive love of and for everyone.”

The Fast And The Flurries

The Fast And The Flurries

Mary Matis and Amy Trombecker, Sharon Springs, run with their dogs Tate, Ryker and Fonzie in today’s Cider Run 5K/10K race at the Fly Creek Cider Mill, which was marked by unseasonably cold temperatures, wind and snow. Proceeds for the event go to help fund the Susquehanna Valley SPCA. (Ian Austin/
Don’t ‘Abolish’ Otsego Now, But Consider Broader Council

Don’t ‘Abolish’ Otsego Now,

But Consider Broader Council

To the Editor:

I am privileged to be a columnist for this newspaper. Readers ought to be aware, however, that editors, not authors, choose the titles for op-eds, letters, and columns.

My last column was misleadingly titled “Abolish Otsego Now.” That suggests shutting down

Otsego Now, and everything it does. I advocated instead that its functions be included in a much broader Economic Development Council.

The Editor also paired his title of my column with his own editorial calling to “abolish” Otsego

2000, suggesting some kind of equivalence which does not exist.

Material submitted to the paper ought to be allowed to speak for itself, and not be manipulated for sensational effect, especially in the very same issue in which it is published.


Fly Creek

Face It: New Jobs Will Require Energy

Face It: New Jobs

Will Require Energy

To the Editor:

My wife and I recently moved to the area (my wife was born in Cooperstown) and I have been reading with interest the conflict about economic development that is being shaped in large part by Otsego Now! and Otsego 2000.

I was also born in Upstate New York near Syracuse and have witnessed firsthand how cities and towns across Upstate were left gutted when industry moved out or shut down from the ’70s to the ’90s.  So the debate about development in Otsego County is important to me.  I was appalled to recently read that Oneonta has a poverty level in excess of 25 percent; this with two  colleges and a hospital as major employers.

Three quick points:

  1. I always read with interest Professor Kuzminski’s whimsical columns that decry almost any form of economic development. Of course, he is retired and therefore doesn’t have a long-term stake in the economic prosperity of the county like young families.
  2. “Industrial Development” does not mean massive plants that will belch tons of noxious fumes into the sky. There is a lot of light industry that is very desirable, has limited emissions and provides good jobs.  But let’s face it folks – any business we attract is going to require a reliable and reasonable energy source and that doesn’t seem to be the case right now.
  3. I was fascinated to read that Otsego 2000 had a major hand in blocking the Jordanville wind farm. Isn’t this the group that is fervently extolling the use of renewable energy sources?  This isn’t just NIMBYism – this is what I call the BANANA principle:  Build Almost Nothing Anywhere Near Anything.  What future are they promising to provide the residents of the county?

I write all this even while I firmly believe that global warming must be addressed.  However, it is a process that will take time and we cannot turn our backs on residents who want to live here with the prospect of a decent job at a good company.

I lived in Vermont for 15 years and witnessed this same debate.  That state has still not recovered the jobs lost during the recent recession.  The population is stagnant and aging as young people leave the state to seek job careers elsewhere that aren’t available in Vermont.  Now the state is offering $10,000 for “knowledge workers” to move to the state where they can work remotely from home.

I only hope that this region doesn’t have to resort to the same desperate ploy in an effort to provide a good living and a future for young workers and their families.


Fly Creek

B&B Ranch Headed For Auction Block

B&B Ranch Headed

For Auction Block

Could you be the next owner of the B&B Ranch? (Photos Courtesy of Platinum Luxury Auctions)
The indoor pool at the B&B Ranch.

FLY CREEK – The foreclosed B&B Ranch will go up for auction just four months after the Otsego County Sheriff’s Department seized the property for failure to pay back a loan from the Bank of Kinderhook.

Though originally listed at $3.2 million, Platinum Luxury Auctions is listing the estate as a “no reserve” and will open the bidding at 4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 17.


Fall For Fall Concert


CONCERT – 3:30 p.m. Sunday Fall for Fall Concert featuring Catskill Valley Wind Ensemble performing Yosemite Autumn, City Rain, more. Free, open to public. Refreshments served. St. James Retirement Community, 9 St. James Pl., Oneonta. 607-436-9974 or visit

PANCAKE BREAKFAST – 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. Annual breakfast with Fly Creek Area Historical Society features, sausage, home-fries, eggs, biscuits, sausage, gravy, grits, more. Suggested donation, $8/adult. Old Grange Building, 210 Cemetery Rd., Fly Creek. 607-547-1275.


Food Truck Festival


FOOD TRUCK FEST – 1 – 8:30 p.m. Celebrate Food Truck of Upstate New York. Features food trucks, live music, vendors, tastings of wine, craft beer, ciders, food competition, live performance from ZZ Top! beginning 8:30. 6th Ward Booster Club Field, 7 Scrambling Ave., Oneonta. Visit

FARM DAY – 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Visit family farms around Otsego County to explore fish farming, beekeeping, maple syrup making, more. Find guide at

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