Category Archives: Featured Stories

Oswego County unemployment rate falls


By Debra J. Groom

Oswego County finally posted an unemployment rate in single digits during the month of April.

The county’s jobless rate for April came in at 7.6 percent, a marked improvement over the 10 percent from February.

Still, Oswego County has one of the highest rates in the state. Only the Bronx at 10.3 percent, Essex at 8.2, Hamilton at 8.8, Jefferson at 8.2, Lewis at 8.7 and St. Lawrence at 7.7 have rate higher than Oswego’s. Continue reading

It’s going to be a ‘sweet’ summer in Fulton

Once Sweets is open for the season in a couple of weeks, Cruise Nights will continue on Saturdays. Valley News photo by Ashley M. Casey
Once Sweets is open for the season in a couple of weeks, Cruise Nights will continue on Saturdays.
Valley News photo by Ashley M. Casey

By Ashley M. Casey

Rev up your classic car and get ready for some ice cream — Sweet Inspirations Drive-In is under new ownership.

After spending nearly four years on the market, the Fulton fixture has been purchased by Kevin Niver Sr. His children, Kevin Niver Jr. and Kaitlyn Niver, will help manage the drive-in. The deal closed May 14.

“It’s a Fulton landmark. He didn’t want to see it gone,” Kevin Jr. said of his father’s decision to purchase Sweets, as it’s affectionately nicknamed, from the Freeman family. Continue reading

June class will focus on training concerning senior falls

A class is coming up in June for volunteers and professionals who would like to provide instruction for a Better Balance exercise regimen.

The “Train the Teacher” event is from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. June 3 in the SUNY Oswego Campus Center.

The Rural Health Network of Oswego County recently established the Oswego County Falls Prevention Coalition to deal with the problem faced by the frail elderly concerning falls.

The coalition serves as a valuable resource for older adults and caregivers as it helps them identify ways to prevent falls and identify hazards that could cause a fall.

The six-week 6 Steps to Better Balance course engages seniors with activities to improve their balance and teaches them various ways they can prevent or lessen the impact of falling.

Dr. Betty Perkins-Carpenter, a nationally renowned expert on fall prevention who has made a lifelong career of teaching people to be physically fit, safe, and secure in their daily living activities, will conduct the training for the volunteers.

Perkins-Carpenter will teach health care professionals, adult caregivers and interested older adults, her 6 Steps to Balance System and subsequently how to train older adults.

The 6 Steps to Better Balance System philosophy is based on the simple but profound belief that “fear of falling” is a major factor contributing to falling-a self-fulfilling fear. The system focuses on helping older adults to maintain and reclaim their balance through a series of activities that are fun and easy to do, give hope and motivate, and are designed to reduce falls and the fear of falling.

Participants in this “Train the Teacher” course, will learn how to teach the 6 Steps to Better Balance System by learning each of the six steps and associated activities: Stretching in Bed Exercises, Balance Exercises, Ball Handling Exercises, Walking while talking on the Phone (indoors) Exercises, The Slump, and Dancing with a Pillow. Once trained, practicum sessions will follow and help offered when and where needed.

Pre-requisite for the training is a background in physical education, or experience with senior fitness and exercise.  Class size is limited and the deadline for registration is Friday, May 30.

For more information or to register to attend the 6 Steps to Better Balance Train-The Teacher event, professionals should contact Danielle Wert at 592-0827 or via e-mail at

Volunteers should contact the RSVP office at 312-2317 or via e-mail at

RSVP is a federal initiative of the Corporation for National & Community Service and is locally sponsored by SUNY Oswego and The United Way.  RSVP enables people 55 and older to remain productive and to “help themselves by helping others.”

We’re giving away tickets to ‘Stomp Out Stigma’

Free Prize Giveaway

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The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention will host a fun fundraiser event at the American Foundry in Oswego on May 31 at 6 p.m.

Send us your favorite inspirational quote that you think of when times are hard for a chance to win two free tickets to this fun night of dancing and live music. And there will be a live auction featuring two second row tickets to the Brad Paisley concert this summer at the New York State Fair. Comment on this post, on The Valley News’ Facebook page, or on Today’s CNY Woman’s Facebook page with your quote and we’ll choose a winner.

Go online to sign petition about UTVs

State Sen. Patricia Ritchie, R-Oswegatchie, is urging sportsmen, seniors and every New Yorker who enjoys the great outdoors to sign her online petition to allow side-by-side UTVs to be legally registered in the state.

The petition can be found at

More than 2,000 members of the public — from across New York state and as far away as Tennessee, Florida and California — have already signed the petition calling on the Assembly to pass Ritchie’s bill (S.1946).

Most signers indicated that they were ATV owners.

Ritchie’s bill cleared a key legislative hurdle Tuesday when it was approved by the Senate Transportation Committee. The full Senate is expected to act on the bill in the next few weeks.

New York is the only state in the nation that does not allow UTVs to be legally registered and, while the Senate has approved Ritchie’s bill each year for the past three years, the Assembly has failed to act even once.

“Side-by-sides, or UTVs, are increasingly popular among seniors, families and outdoor enthusiasts, and prohibiting their use is hurting our tourism industry, cheating us of an opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors, and depriving state and local governments of millions of dollars in registration and tax revenues,” Ritchie said.

“I’ve heard from thousands of outdoors enthusiasts who are travelling outside the state to get around New York’s outdated rules,” she said.

“I’m pleased that the Transportation Committee has shown its support for this measure and am hopeful that the Assembly will act on this common-sense reform,” Ritchie said.

State law allows only ATVs up to 1,000 pounds to be registered for use in New York. That limit excludes virtually all side-by-side models, which have become increasingly popular especially among families and seniors.

Dealers in other states say the side-by-side models now account for more than 40 percent of sales — meaning the state is losing out on significant registration revenue, taxes from the sales of these vehicles, and hundreds of millions of dollars in increased tourism spending by UTV enthusiasts.


Sterling Inspiration Festival celebrates 18 years

It has been 18 years since then-director John Weeks and Friends Chair Chuck Paice launched the Sterling Nature Center’s first Inspiration: Festival of Art and Nature.

Since then Inspiration has grown to be one of the showcase events of the center’s calendar, having survived a few cold and rainy days along the way.

This year, Inspiration is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, June 1. Continue reading

Fulton’s Memorial Day parade route

Fulton’s Memorial Day Salute parade is at 10 a.m. Saturday May 24.

The route is the same as it has been for the past 32 years.

The formation of the parade is in the former Nestle parking lot and adjacent streets. The parade then starts north on South Fourth Street by Lyons Street to pass by the Oswego Health facility and the Michaud Nursing Home so residents who are able to get outside or to their window can see the parade.

The parade proceeds north to Broadway and then west to Recreation Park. The reviewing stand will be positioned at West Broadway and West Third Street, in front of Brewer and Brewer’s Mobil Station.

Typically, thousands will line the parade route.