Kathleen Peters Graphics Designer Otsego Land Trust
The Husband and I are blessed with a beautiful property in Schuyler Lake. We decided several years ago it was worth preserving, and opted to get a conservation easement on our 22 acres through the Otsego Land Trust (OLT). We have our own land to explore and enjoy, but the Land Trust has open spaces available for everyone.
On its editorial page over the past few weeks, The Freeman’s Journal has commented on, among other important issues, the fog-like haze that was smoke from the western wildfires that fell on the lake and village, leaving the air heavily dangerous for long periods of time, and the latest COVID surge that is gnawing, for the most part, on our unvaccinated and younger residents — children — as well as causing new concern among our older population. None of this was any good and all of it is sad and, no doubt to some, depressing.
However, for us here in Otsego County, this distant, remote upstate almost-forgotten (or, perhaps, not yet discovered) place, there is a special glimmer; something that can bring a smile; something to lighten our load and keep us on a happier track. Otsego Lake.
Nine miles of clear, deep water that laps endlessly on steep tree-lined shores and often reflects the changing sky and clouds and forest, the lake is a home to myriad fish and feathered wildlife, a reservoir for the village of Cooperstown and a summer and winter playground for boaters, tubers, swimmers, sailors, rowers, paddlers, divers, fishermen and water, and snow-skiers. Glacier-created during the last great Ice Age, and spring-fed as well as stream-fed, this superb natural resource is the headwaters of the Susquehanna River. In the past it has played a variety of roles in the Leatherstocking novels of James Fenimore Cooper, who called his – and our – beautiful lake The Glimmerglass.
PHOENIX MILLS – John D. Robinson, a Cooperstown native son and avid outdoorsman, passed away late Sunday night, July 4, 2021, at Cooperstown Center for Rehabilitation and Nursing. He was 83.
Born October 15, 1937, in Cooperstown, he was one of three sons of Torrey G. and Leonore M. (Goddard) Robinson. John could trace his long-standing family roots in Otsego County back to 1792 when his ancestors settled in Lena in the Town of New Lisbon.
John graduated with the Class of 1956 from Cooperstown High School. For many years he was employed in the area as a union laborer, and was involved with construction projects at Hyde Hall, Mary Imogene Bassett Hospital and Interstate 88.
Throughout his life he enjoyed outdoor activities, and spent innumerable hours exploring the Otsego region swimming, hiking, fishing, trapping, and hunting. He was also an avid motorcyclist – his favorites were Indians – and also enjoyed riding snowmobiles in the winter months. His hand-crafted log cabin home on the shore of the Susquehanna River, his workmanship in stone masonry at Hyde Hall and his keen interest in local history reflected his deep and abiding passion for local culture and conservation.
Rowing opportunities have been expanding on Otsego Lake the past few years and a two-time Olympian has been a big part of bringing the sport to Cooperstown and Otsego County.
The Otsego Area Rowing program, under the guidance of Oneonta’s two-time Olympian, Andrea Thies, has been expanding for several summers now as people take up the water sport.
A rower from her collegiate years at Cornell University, Thies aims to offer access to the sport regardless of age, ability or experience.
OAR was established in 2017, in conjunction with the Otsego Land Trust and Brookwood Point, with an emphasis on adolescent rowing opportunities.
The not-for-profit offers classes and opportunities for all ages and abilities. Although many of OAR’s programs were restricted last year because of the coronavirus pandemic, this summer’s rowing opportunities are in full swing with various adult and kid camps.
EARTH FESTIVAL – 1 – 7 p.m. Fun Online Events to celebrate the little blue marble floating in space that makes us all possible. Celebrate with Otsego County Conservation Association. 607-547-4488 or visit occainfo.org/earth-festival/
BOAT PARADE – 3 p.m. Get out for the annual ‘We Love Our Lake’ decorated boat parade. This years theme ‘Lets Celebrate – It’s The 4th Of July.’ All boats welcome from human powered to motor powered and all in between. Participants are reminded to practice social distancing. Parade assembles at 3 Mile Point and proceeds on West Side of the Lake to Lakefront Park, Cooperstown. 518-542-6630 or visit otsegolakeassociation.org for info.
COOPERSTOWN – Though many 4th of July traditions are on hold this year, the Otsego Land Trust’s free tree giveaway is still a go.
“Giving away trees to community has been a 4th of July tradition for the land trust,” commented Patricia Szarpa, Executive Director, “with the cancellation of the annual Springfield Parade, we still want to carry out this tradition, but in a different way this year!”
ST. PATRICKS DINNER – 4 – 7 p.m. Enjoy Corned Beef & Cabbage dinner, performance by Irish Step Dancers hosted by The Knights of Columbus. Take-out encouraged. Free, Donations accepted. St. Mary’s Parish Center, 31 Elm St., Cooperstown. 607-437-4626 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
COOPERSTOWN – A coalition of Republican and Democratic reps took control of the floor at this morning’s county Board of Representatives’ meeting and approved the $151,000 sale of the 87-acre Rose Hill property to the Otsego Land Trust, a non-profit not required to pay property taxes.
The land, atop Panther Mountain on the north end of the Town of Otsego, connects with the Land Trust’s 85-acre Fetterlee Forest, doubling the trust’s holding, which features a scenic overlook of Canadarago Lake and Deowongo Island, as well as hiking trails.
The sale had been stymied in the county board’s committee system since April, failing to pass the Public Works Committee, then failing to pass the Administrative Committee. Normally, that would have ended it.
MUSIC FESTIVAL – 1 – 8 p.m. Celebration of Local Musicians features performances by 5 local bands, myriad individuals musicians. Donations support Gary Johnson Memorial Music Scholarship Fund. at Maple Street Park, Oneonta. 607-431-1001 or visit www.facebook.com/CleinmanNetwork/
NO FIREWORKS – An item that appeared here for a few minutes was incorrect: Fireworks are planned Friday, July 5, at Brookwood Gardens, not tomorrow.
CONCERT – 3 p.m. Town of Springfield Appreciation Concert will offer an overview of The Glimmerglass Opera’s 2019 season. Proceeds will benefit the Springfield 4th of July Committee. Alice Busch Opera Theater, 7300 NY-80, Cooperstown. Info, 315-858-0304 or visit www.glimmerglass.org