News of Otsego County

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


Oneonta High School

Coroner Hurley, Basketball Star Ruff Named To OHS Wall, Hall


Coroner Jim Hurley,

Hoop Star Mariah Ruff

Named To OHS Wall, Hall

Vince Foti, top, stands behind the 2019 inductees into the Oneonta Alumni Association’s Wall of Distinction and the Athletic Hall Of Fame following the Induction Ceremony at Belden Auditorium this afternoon at Oneonta High School. From left are Thomas Sturiale, ’53, Dr. Allie Terry-Fritsch, ’92, Mariah Ruff, ’14, Willie McCarthy, ’86, PAtrick Delaney, ’62, Rosalee Vroman (representing her late husband Richard Vroman, ’55,) Al Scheer, George Whetmore (representing friend Herb Greene, ’47, who could not attend) and James Hurley, ’53. Geoffrey Smith, ’65, one of the original founders of the Alumni Association, was named the Alumni of the Year. Alumni weekend continues at 3 p.m. as the Oneonta Yellow Jackets face off against Norwich during the homecoming game. (Ian Austin/
Fox, FOR-DO Host First Anti-Addiction Program

Fox, FOR-DO Host First

Anti-Addiction Program

“Knowledge is Power” panelist Julie Dostal, LEAF executive director, makes a point after hearing FOR-DO’S Ben Riker, right, discuss the brain’s role in creating addiction, as well as available recovery services. Other panelists are, from left, city Superintendent of Schools Tom Brindley, OPD Sgt. Branden Collison, OFD Assistant Chief Jim Maloney, Dostal, Bassett ER Nurse Manager Karen Peterson, Southern Tier AIDS Program’s Rebekah Smith, FOR-DO Executive Director Debra Berrios and Gary Hearl, addiction recovery coach, of Fairview Recovery Services. The program, at Oneonta High School, was the first of three planned by Fox Hospital and FOR-DO. (Jennifer Hill/
OHS Sends Off Class Of 2019


All Well, Superintendent

Says As He Bids Farewell

Miriam Fonjweng is embraced by her brother Elvin Fonjweng as she exits the front of Oneonta High School following the 150th annual commencement this morning. Friends and family filled the Belden Auditorium to celebrate the accomplishments of the Class of ’19. The event also marked the last graduation for Superintendent Joseph Yelich, right, who is retiring. “These are tumultuous times tor education,” said Yelich in his remarks, “But we have no such worry. The district is in better shape than it has been in years.  We are financially solid and our facilities are improving.” He went on to assure the students that there is no one way to reach success: “If you are worried, don’t be. It all plays out. Today, after you graduate, both you and I will figure out what we will do next.” (Ian Austin/

OHS Tennis Star Catan Qualifies for States

Speaking Of Sports

OHS Tennis Star Catan

Heads To State Tourney

ONEONTA – Tennis is far from over for sophomore Chris Catan, Oneonta’s ace player.  He qualified for the State Tournament, which begins Thursday, May 30 at USTA’s Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, Queens.  He is the STAC and Section IV champion.

Golf also has a qualifier for the State Tournament in Oneonta’s Evan Sitts.  The senior, who is heading to York College (PA) to play golf this fall, is a 2-time STAC champion and will play in the state competition on June 2 & 3 at Robert Trent Jones Golf Course at Cornell University.  Cooperstown’s team won its third consecutive Section III small school title on May 21.

They will play in the CSC Tournament on May 30 after winning another CSC regular season crown.


Upstate New York Music, Folklore


LECTURE – 7:30 p.m. George Ward presents 2019 Bruce Buckley lecture “‘MY Little Mohee’  – Lawrence Older: The Songs, Tunes, Tales and Life Journey of an Adirondack Singer.” Featuring a night of music celebrating history, traditions of Upstate New York. Free, open to public. Fenimore Art Museum, Cooperstown.

OHS Boys Head Into Tournament

OHS Boys Head

Into Tournament

OHS senior Evan Sitts drives against a Chenango Valley defender to take OHS into the semi-finals.




It has all the makings of a perfect rivalry.

Cheryl Clough/HOMETOWN ONEONTA OHS Junior Teddy McGraw shoots a foul shot.

“In our first game against them, we beat Seton Catholic,” said OHS Yellowjackets coach Jerry Mackey. “Then they came back and beat us by 10 points.”
And on Wednesday, the two teams will square off in a deciding game to see who moves ahead to the Class
B Section IV finals. “Last year, we lost to Seton Catholic at this round,” said Mackey.
“But this year, we’re the only team who has beaten them in a game.”

OHS Senior Tops 3-Point Record

OHS Senior Tops 3-Point Record

OHS Girls Basketball coach Matt Miller hugs senior Taylor Microni after she scores her last three-pointer to break Mariah Ruffs record of 205 career three pointers. But despite Microni’s prowess – 206 three-pointers in all – the Lady Yellowjackets fell to Norwich earlier this evening, 67-40, ending their playoff bid for the state championship. (Joe Harmer/

Lecture On Storytelling & Experience


ANGEL TREE PROGRAM – Give the Gift of Christmas this holiday season. Adopt a family in need. Visit to learn how.

ANNUAL LECTURE – 7 p.m. Annual Richard Siegfried Lecture featuring Andrew Bottomley presenting “Voices From Below: Audio Storytelling and the Politics of Experience.” Free, open to public. Followed by dessert reception. Craven Lounge, Morris Conference Center, SUNY Oneonta. Visit

KNITTING GROUP – 1:30 – 3:30 p.m. Cooperstown Village Library, 22 Main St., Cooperstown. Call 607-547-8344 or visit


Halloween Parades



PARADE – 5 p.m. Showcase your Halloween best with Cooperstown Central School band leading the way. Followed by cider and treats at Cooperstown Chamber of Commerce, then trick-or-treating at around Cooperstown. Start at Cooper Park, Cooperstown. 607-547-9983 or visit

PARADE – 7 p.m. Celebrate Halloween. Costumes encouraged, includes Oneonta High School Bands. Line-up at 6:15. Main St., Oneonta.

OHS Wall Of Fame & Wall Of Distinction Inducted


OHS Honors Wall Of Fame, 

Wall Of Distinction Honorees

Friends an families gathered at Oneonta High School’s Belden Auditorium this afternoon for the 2018 Induction Ceremony to the Wall of Distinction and the Athletic Hall of Fame. Above, Wall of Distinction inductees Mary-Ann Corrao Ferree , ’72, and Harold Anderson, ’48, unveil their plaques at the conclusion of the ceremony. At right, Athletic Hall of Fame inductee Geoffrey Bean, ’03, who was honored for his achievements in football, basketball and track & field, enters the auditorium to fanfare and applause. (Ian Austin/


Oneonta Graduates Lauded For Care & Compassion

OHS Class of ’18 Lauded

For Care & Compassion

Leroy Williams, Jr. embraces one of his teachers, Kelly Tavarone, as the Oneonta High School Class of 2018 exits the auditorium following the 149th annual Commencement at the high school’s Belden Auditorium at this afternoon. The graduates, lauded by Principal Tom Brindley, right,  for their caring and compassionate nature, had an unheard of number fights during the school year: zero. “This is a group that cares about each other, looks out for each other and cheer each other on,” Brindley remarked. “(They) are a friendly smile on a bad day. What you do does not compare to who you are.” It was also announced that Brindley is being promoted to assistant superintendent, a new position.   “I consider it a privilege to graduate with you.” he said. Brindley’s successor will be his assistant principal, Anne Wolstenholme. (Ian Austin/



Delany Ruston Screens Her Film ‘Screenagers’ At OHS

Delany Ruston Screens Her

Film ‘Screenagers’ At OHS

Documentary film maker Delany Ruston talks to parents and teachers who gathered in the OHS Beldin Auditorium this evening for a free screening of her film “ScreenAgers: Growing Up In The Digital”. The documentary deals with how her personal struggles with her teenage daughter are part of a much larger problem of addiction in young people today and how we can take action to correct it in our families. In a talk following the film, Ruston stressed the importance of boundaries like limited time per day and not having screens in the bedroom. She also spoke about success with short, weekly conversations tech talks with her family that help create mindfulness by discussing what is effective vs. not effective about technology. For more ideas and frequently asked questions you can visit (Ian Austin/
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