News of Otsego County

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


Paul Lord

Sign Of Summer: No Wake Buoy In

Sign Of Summer:

No Wake Buoy In

Practicing social distancing, Paul Lord, who teaches at SUNY Oneonta and the Biological Field Station on Otsego Lake, places the no-wake buoy yesterday off Cooperstown’s Lakefront Park, a spring ritual and sign that summer isn’t far behind. 
Attention, Boaters! Divers Below

Attention, Boaters!

Divers Below

To the Editor:

I was free diving (mask, fins and snorkel; no SCUBA) in Otsego Lake last Thursday evening, June 13,  when I was run over by a motorboat moving at high speed.

If you see this flag, there are divers below.

No, I was not injured.  I was frightened.  I dug myself into the lake bottom to avoid injury.

A dive flag was clearly displayed, and I was within 70 feet of the Biological Field Station (BFS) boathouse dock.  Clearly, the boater involved would have been devastated if blood had been left in the water.  He seemed oblivious (as did his passenger) to the fact that he was violating at least three laws.

Each year, the BFS volunteer divers report boaters ignoring the red and white divers’-down flag and approaching the site of ongoing SCUBA diving.  The volunteers have learned to keep one diver out of the water just to direct boaters away from the diving.

In New York State, motorboats must remain 100 feet away from the divers’-down flag, and motorboats must not create wake (must drive 5 mph or less) if within 100 feet of the shoreline or any human-created fixture in the lake.

At Fly Creek ‘Phil,’ Youth Beauty, Strength Evident
from Paul Lord

At Fly Creek ‘Phil,’ Youth,

Beauty, Strength Evident

The It Girls of the evening – from left, Vicki Gates, Scottie Baker and Julie Huntsman – perform a symphony on kazoos during the Fly Creek Philharmonics’ annual concert Saturday, March 16, at the United Methodist Church. More photos at (Jim Kevlin/

To the Editor:

As a deaf guy, I don’t attend many musical performances.  They are largely exercises in frustration for me.  Before my hearing loss, I appreciated music, and I still appreciate memories of music, but the reality is that the notes don’t resonate when you are missing enough frequencies.

I attended last night’s performance to acknowledge the support provided by the Fly Creek Philharmonic for the Otsego Lake Association.  I enjoyed every minute of it.  This was the second or third time I attended a Fly Creek Philharmonic performance.  Knowing the visuals would be important and hoping that my lip-reading skills would help to understand the lyrics, I stood in the rear last night.

‘Monster Buoy’ Removed From Lake For Winter

‘Monster Buoy’ Removed

From Lake For Winter

Dr. Kiyoko Yokota was on hand at the Biological Field Station dock on Otsego Lake yesterday for the removal of what Paul Lord, standing at left, who leads the BFS diving team, termed a “monster buoy.”  The Continuous Lake Monitoring Buoy (CLMB) just completed its second year tracking conditions deep in the lake, which can be compared with CLMBs around the national and world, to allow the local researchers to prepare for changing conditions caused by global warming.  Dr. Yokota, an assistant professor of biology at SUNY Oneonta and BFS researcher, said the CLMB noted numerous more days above 26 degrees Celsius this summer than the year before.  (Jim Kevlin/
Otsego County Runners Dominate Half-Marathon

Otsego County Runners

Dominate Half-Marathon

Clark Sports Center photographer Emily Kishbaugh, top, documents Cooperstown’s Nancy Potter’s completion of the Race the Lake Marathon Saturday, which started and ended at Glimmerglass State Park. While Nancy wasn’t in the top 10, local runners dominated the half-marathon results, claiming the top five spots:  Nick Arnecke, Edmeston, first; Wayne Allen, Oneonta, second; Brett Fritts, Springfield Center, third; Andrew Rock, Cooperstown, fourth, and Kara Arnold, Cooperstown, fifth.   Peter Buffington, Winter Springs, Fla., won the full marathon in 3:08:38, but Cooperstownian Todd Baum was second, finishing in 3:16:03.   The Race the Lake again collaborated with OCCA, which held its Otsego Lake Fest at the Glimmerglass Pavilion.  At right, Paul Lord, the SUNY Oneonta biology professor and Biological Field Station mainstay alerts passersby to the latest invasive scourge: Herbilla.  It isn’t here yet, said Lord, but let’s be vigilant to keep it that way.  (Jim Kevlin/

BFS Deploys Buoys For Summer, But Flashing Lights Found Lacking

BFS Deploys Buoys For Summer,

But Flashing Lights Found Lacking

The two buoy lights in the lower right survived for 10 years, Lord said; the rest wore out in a year.

COOPERSTOWN – It means summer isn’t far behind.

Volunteer Divers Pat McCormack, Lee Ferrara, Bjorn Eilertsen, and Sarah Coney deployed no-wake zone buoys (NWZBs) and retrieved the over-winter spar buoys this morning, according to Paul Lord, who oversees the SUNY Oneonta Biological Field State diving team.

All NWZBs are deployed except for the Four Mile Point East and Five Mile Point Buoys, Lord reported.  The Five-Mile Point NWZB is entangled with the BFS monitoring equipment.  A carefully planned dive will be executed to disentangle the two systems once lights are in hand, he said.  The Four-Mile Point East NWZB is also awaiting a light.

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