Category Archives: Featured Stories

Phoenix swimmer wins award

Submitted by Oswego County BOCES

John C. Birdlebough senior Alyssa Harley is making a splash with the Fulton varsity swim team this year.

On Saturday, the standout athlete from Phoenix was selected as the female swimmer of the meet during 16th annual HAC Swim Invitational held at the Harley School in Rochester.

As the top seed in the 100-meter freestyle and 100-meter backstroke, Harley dominated both events on her way to first-place finishes. Her times of 1:01.78 (freestyle) and 1:08.78 (backstroke) earned her a spot in the sectional meet in February.

Coach Raina Hinman said despite sitting out her junior season due to an injury, Harley has come back stronger than ever.

The Phoenix senior is also a member of a club swim team in Baldwinsville.

Thirteen boys’ teams and five girls’ teams from the Section V conference competed in the 22-event meet.

Phoenix boys’ hoops boost record to 7-4

By Rob Tetro

The Phoenix boys’ varsity basketball team has won 2 out of its last 3 games and now has an overall record of 7-4.

On Jan. 10, the Firebirds came away with an exciting win over Marcellus 53-52. Phoenix rolled past Solvay Jan. 13 by a score of 62-37 but the fell to Syracuse-ITC 60-54 on Jan. 14.

Against Marcellus, the first period was competitive and Phoenix led by just 1 at the end. In the second, Marcellus stormed ahead, outscoring Phoenix by 11 points for a 31-21 lead at the half.

The Firebirds answered back during the third quarter, outscoring Marcellus by 10 points to tie the game at 42 going into the fourth quarter. Then the Firebirds got it done during the fourth quarter, outscored Marcellus down the stretch to escape with a 53-52 win.

Phoenix was led by Dylan Doupe with 13 points, followed by Bryce Plante with 11, Brian Sawyer and Zach Sisera scored 7 points, Connor Haney added 6 and Walker Connoly chipped in 5.

Phoenix cruised past Solvay, even though Solvay outscored the Firebirds by 4 in the first quarter.

Phoenix cut into the deficit during the second quarter and Solvay led by only 2 — 23-21 — at the half.

Phoenix took over in the second half. They outscored Solvay by 12 points during the third quarter to take a 10-point lead and then didn’t let up in the fourth, outscoring Solvay 41-14 during the third and fourth quarters.

Leading the way for Phoenix was Zach Sisera with 14 points, followed by Walker Connoly with 11, Dylan Doupe and Brian Sawyer scored 10 each, Connor Haney chipped in 7 and Bryce Plante added 6 points.

In their loss to Syracuse-ITC, the first quarter was tight with Syracuse-ITC having only a 1-point lead after the first quater. Syracuse-ITC added to its lead during the second quarter and took a 35-28 lead into halftime.

The Firebirds cut into the deficit during the third quarter, bringing Syracuse-ITC’s lead to 5 points. But Phoenix couldn’t get any closer.

Phoenix was led by Dylan Doupe with 17 points, followed by Connor Haney with 13, Brian Sawyer and Zach Sisera scored 7 each, Bryce Plante had 6 and Walker Connoly added 4 points for The Firebirds.

Juried Student Exhibition begins Jan. 31 at SUNY Oswego

Submitted by SUNY Oswego

Tyler Art Gallery at SUNY Oswego will host the 51st annual Juried Student Exhibition starting Friday, Jan. 31.

The exhibition, running concurrently through March 1 with a display titled “Recollection: A Memory Loss Awareness Project,” will open from 5 to 7 p.m. Jan. 31 in Tyler Hall with a free public reception featuring the student artists.

The Juried Student Exhibition welcomed 150 submissions from undergraduates around campus, and 62 were selected for the show, said Michael Flanagan, director of Tyler Art Gallery.

Artistic media included are book arts, drawings, paintings, photographs, digital illustrations, ceramics, sculpture, prints and newer media such as websites, digital animation and web applications.

Serving as jurors for this exhibition were Michelle Roberts of Rochester, a 2006 Oswego alumna and owner of Michelle Roberts Design and Novus Creative, and Peter Valenti of Syracuse, a 1983 alumnus, teacher and developer of the ceramics program at East Syracuse Minoa High School, co-founder and president of the Independent Potters Association and director of the high school ceramics exhibition Central New York Feats of Clay.

In addition to “Recollection” and the juried student exhibition opening that night, the “Guerrilla Gorilla Grad Art Exhibition” will display recent work of SUNY Oswego students in master’s-related art programs from 5 to 7 p.m. on Jan. 31 in the Student Gallery, Room 21 of Tyler Hall.

Tyler Art Gallery is open 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays when college is in session.

Parking for Tyler Art Gallery patrons without a current SUNY Oswego parking permit is $1. For more information, visit Parking is available in the employee and commuter lots east of Culkin Hall, the college’s seven-story main administration building.

Academic stars named at Emerson J. Dillon Middle School

Academic achievers at Emerson J. Dillon Middle School in Phoenix have been announced.

A Gold Star means the student earned an overall quarterly average of 90 or higher while Silver Star is awarded for an average between 85.0 and 89.99.

A failing grade or incomplete on the report card disqualifies a student from either award regardless of their average.

Grade 5 Gold Stars:

Isabella Allen, Shay Altman, Shayna Applebee, Christopher AuClair, Amaya Baker, Nicholas Bartlett, Ashleigh Besaw, Haley Bowersox, Natalie Brown, Sara Brunell, Kelsie Burgess, Chloe Calkins, Hannah Charleston, Emma Clark, Tabitha Clark, Alexander Coons, Sophia Crandall, Abigail Czyz,

Brielle DeRoberts and Alivia Eusepi.

Also: Hailey Fredericks, Francesca Goodell, Noah Gordon, Cierra Harvey, Mattison Hess, Braden Jolly, Amanda Justian, Lillyan Kingsbury, Nathan Kosakowski, Alivia Lamphere, Miranda LaRobardiere, Jock Li, Owen Lytle, Zack Mills, Robert Minard, Joslyn Mintonye, Garret Morrissiey, Kylie Mulcahey, Alex Olschewske and Kara Pierce.

Also: Andrew Quinn, Connor Roberts, Lily Roberts, William Semanchuk-Enser, Aiden Southworth, Isabella Stacy, Garrett Strang, Liam Sweeney, Benjamin Thibault, Corinne Thibault, Zoie Tracy, Melody Trask, Sophia Trinca, Aidan Trumble, Thomas Uhl, Mason Watkins,

Grade 5 Silver Stars:

Chase Altman, Zackary Byrne,  Cameron Cerul, Kolby Costello, Dylan DeBarth, Haylie Dodge, Alexis Dryer, Ethan Fox, Katherine Holbrook, Aliyah Ladd, Patricia Lamach, Jacob LaRocque, Tori-Lenn Loosen, Nicholas Merriett, Ariell Monaghan, Crystyna Morrison, Victoria O’Connor, Imari Piscitelli, Keaton Renfrew, Katrina Smith, Ashlyn Wallace, Carl Weller, Molly Werth, Jenasys Wood

Grade 6 Gold Stars:

Violet Ameele, Grace Arnold, Cade Bacon, Garrett Bowman, Mason Bresett, Matthew Doane, Elisabeth Dona, Camron Fordyce, Alexandra Galle, Caitlin George, Hailey Goudy, Allison Grabowski, Samuel Guthrie, Adam Hahn, Cassadee Handville, Samantha Harrison and Keera Hazen.

Also: Carly Ingerson, Laila Jones, Madison Kalt, Katelyn Kenner-Carbonaro, Jena Klimaszewski, Zaya Koegel, Lauren Kraft, Brigid Lawless, Anthony McCann, Savanah Neupert, Aubrianna Renfrew, Jillian Ricard, Vanessa Rivera, Leah Schlachter, McKenna Squier, Daniel St. Phillips, Tamika Stobart, Teresa Uhl, Nicholas Vaverchak, Grace Vestigo

Grade 6 Silver Stars:

Olivia Bigelow, Rachel Blake, Bryce Bobbett, Jadan Bruno, Brianna Buonagurio, Alexis Capenos, Danielle Case, Dominic Diaz, Michael Dion, Darren Fischel,  Andrew Hemingway, Haylie Homer, Brianna Horn, Paige Isabell, Natalie King, Julianna Lewis, Tina Li, Joshua Lovins, Chloe Lytle, Christian McKay and Caitlyn Mitchell.

Also: Joseph Murphy, Gregory Ojiem, Skyler Patnode, Taylor Petrie, Lilly Salotto, Briana Schreffler, Alan Seever, Ayden Slack, Jacob St. Laurent, Sarah Thorn, Nicole Tulowiecki, Madison Watkins

Grade 7 Gold Stars:

Annabelle Adams, Gabriella Allen, Kearra Backus, Maggie-Lee Basile, Marcus Berube, Cole Britton, Erika Brown, Gianna DeRoberts, Matthew Francis, Brianna Gates, Hannah Gilbert, Hans Goodnow and Johnna Harke.

Also: Xander Harrison, Declan Hawthorne, Kimber Hendrix, Megan Hess, Emilie Hilliard, Christian Johnson, Morgan Johnson, Ashley Kenner-Carbonaro, Jeffrey Lamach,Danielle LeFebvre, Wendy Li, Ashley Margrey and John Matzke V.

Also: Alayna Merrill, Makayla Newvine, Olivia Ripley, Kristine Rowe, Hannah Sallis, Mairin Sgroi, Mariah Sheirer, Joshua Smith, Crystal Stobart, Olivia Thrall, Joshua VanGorder, Garrett Watkins, Edward Zellar

Grade 7 Silver Stars:

Jason Alberici, Justin Alberici, Evan Baldini, Eric Betts, Madison Bird, Gage Breckenridge, Christopher Caltabiano, Abigail Clark, Alexandra Collins, Hannah Edwards, Allison Ernestine, Robert Fredericks, Kiersten Greenleaf, Bryon Halstead, Caroline Harrington, Courtney Holland, Ethan Hunt and Hunter Jewell.

Also: Trevor LaRobardiere, Taylor Mattice, Erin McArdell, Emmalie McIntyre, Riley Munger, Leo Murray Jr., Makenzie Nodine Jacob Palmatier, Dakota Palocy, Caytlyn Prikcett, Gabriel Rebensky, Hannah Root, Hannah Rounds, Alyssa Schafer, Payton Scruton, Gavin Trask, Natasha Zody, Mark Zogg

Grade 8 Gold Stars:

Dixon Ameele, Andrew Avery, Mikalah Bell, Jordan Cole, Hannah Grabowski, Morgan Gravlin, Natalie Hart, Zoe Heckert, Alexandra Hoag, Corinne Januszka, Nina Lewis, Megan Maestri, Emily McDonald, Breanna Mitchell, Ethan Murakami-Hamm, Catherine Musumeci, Bailey Otter, Lauren Schmidt, Alexis Smith, Brianna Squier, Haley Stellingwerf, Alisa Trudell, Kaitlin White, Leila Wooding, Julianne Yates

Grade 8 Silver Stars:

Mikayla Bailey, Scott Bell, Alexis Blackwell, John Blackwell Jr., David Burgess Jr., Christopher Cleary, Gabrielle Crandall, Julie Daubek, Mikayla Davis, Ryan Dolbear, Jonathan Downing, Devin Dubovik, Emily Forget, Becka Fuller, Dakotalee Gelling, Brandon Germain and Nathaniel Gill.

Also: Alyssa Goudy, Trinity Green, Bradlee Hess, Brittney Hunter, Matthew Johnson Jr., Gabriella Liberty, Jacob Marr,  Riley McCann, Paige McEwen, Frank Palmer, Lawrence Pilon, Cade Reed, Noah Scruton, Ryan Shafer, Alexander Sisera, Dana Stoutenger, Molly Thorn, Zachary Tulowiecki, Ben Vienneau, Jerrett Williams, Jordan Williams, Trevor Woren, Kolbey Young


Local doctor gains certification in obesity medicine

Dr. Rajeev Saini recently passed the American Board of Obesity Medicine (ABOM) Certification Exam for Obesity Medicine Physicians and became certified in the subspecialty of obesity medicine.

Physicians certified in obesity medicine are able to positively impact all systems of the body by incorporating weight management into traditional models of medical practice. Specifically, this subspecialty requires competency in and a thorough understanding of the treatment of obesity and the genetic, biologic, environmental, social and behavioral factors that contribute to obesity.

Dr. Saini was among only 191 physicians nationally who successfully completed this year’s exam. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one-third of adults and 17 percent of children and adolescents in this country are obese. Obesity-related conditions include heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer.

“In New York state, the prevalence of adult obesity is about 25 percent.” said Dr. Saini. “I am interested in being part of the solution to this medical epidemic by locally helping patients affected by obesity who seek access to non-surgical treatment options. It is amazing to see as people lose weight, we are able to cut down or even stop their medications for various medical conditions.”

Dr. Saini has been in practice for the last 17 years. He is board certified in Internal Medicine and has offices in Fulton and Baldwinsville. He went to medical school at AIIMS, India and did his residency in Internal Medicine at Upstate Medical University.

Since its founding in January 2012, ABOM has sought to further the accreditation of a sub-specialization of medical practice: obesity medicine.

The ABOM offers a certification examination to assist physicians in attaining competency in this increasingly important and universally relevant aspect of medical care.

News in brief

The Winona Forest Recreation Association 4th Annual Stone Wall 5K Snowshoe Race will be held Sunday, Jan. 19 at the CCC Camp, Winona Forest, Mannsville.

Snowshoeing has been growing by leaps and bounds as a healthy recreational activity in the forest. The Stone Wall Snowshoe Race attracts avid snowshoers from across the region to participate in this popular race, which has grown from a few participants to this year’s 80-plus entries.

The race start at 10:30 a.m. with registration from 9:30 to 10:15 a.m. Details of the race are at


A free will breakfast buffet is scheduled for 8 a.m. to noon Jan. 19 at the Owego Masonic Lake City Lodge 127 in Oswego.

The menu includes pancakes, French toast, sausage, home fries, coffee, tea,orange juice and more.

Donations will be accepted but are not expected.


A one-hour presentation on owls will be given at 3:30 p.m. Jan. 25 at the Montezuma Audubon Center in Savannah.

Call 365-3588 for more information.


A workshop for learning how to make a rag quilt is being held Jan. 29 and Feb. 12 at Oswego County Cooperative Extension.

The cost is $8 and pre-registration must be done by Jan. 27. Both classes must be attended to finish the workshop.

The classes are from 6:30 to 8 p.m. both days.


“Registrations for the upcoming 2014 season for Fulton Little League Baseball & Softball will be taking place at the Fulton War Memorial from 8 a.m. to noon today; noon to 4 p.m. Jan. 25 and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Feb. 1.

All boys or girls who reside in, or attend school in, the Fulton and Hannibal school districts are eligible to play Fulton Little Baseball or Softball.  A child must be 4 years old before May 1, 2014 for the T-Ball program. A girl cannot be 17 on Dec. 31, 2013 and a boy cannot be 17 on April 30, 2014 to play in their respective Senior Divisions of play.

All participants should present a birth certificate at the time of registration. A late fee will be assessed for any player registered after Feb. 1.

Anyone with questions can call John Florek at 591-4993 or Dave Webber at  532-2598.


The Halfway to Harborfest Celebration will be held from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 25 at Gibby’s Irish Pub.

It will include a chicken barbecue fundraiser featuring Gibby’s famous chicken.

Proceeds benefit Harborfest. The menu includes chicken, corn, salt potatoes and a roll.

Paul Vandish will be playing after the Syracuse University basketball game.

Pre-sale tickets must be purchased by Jan. 22. Tickets are available at the Harborfest Offices in the McCrobie Building and at Gibby’s Irish Pub.


The Hannibal Fire Deaprtment Auxiliary is putting on a breakfast buffet from 9 to 11 a.m. Jan. 26 at the firehouse.

The firehouse is on Oswego Street.


A class to learn how to make cute and useful zippered pouches is being offered at Lakeside Artisans, 191 W. First St., Oswgo from 6 to 8 p.m. Jan. 30.

Instructor Kathy Fenlon will demonstrate how to make three different styles of a zippered pouch and three different easy ways to put in a zipper.

Students will select from a variety of fabric and make the pouches. Each pouch will have a different way to install a zipper. Students may make their pouches any size they wish.

Students also will learn different ways to embellish the pouches. These are very practical and can be used for a variety of things such as jewelry, make-up, a mini-wallet, photos, camera or cell phones.

The class fee of $45 includes all supplies. There is a non-refundable deposit of $10 per participant.


A breakfast buffet to benefit the Oswego High School girls’ softball team is set for 8 a.m. to noon Jan. 26 at the Oswego Elks Club.

Tickets can be purchased from any softball team member or at the door. The menu includes French toast, pancakes, sausage, bacon, eggs, assorted juices, and coffee..


If you hold a radio operator technician license and would like to upgrade to general, a 10-week class beginning Jan. 27 will help in that endeavor.

The class starts at 6:30 p.m. at the county building across from Mimi’s in Fulton. The class is free.

The FCC General Class Amateur Radio Operator enjoys the privilege of operating his or her “Ham Radio” station, contacting other stations around the world. These privileges come with the FCC General Class License. This class will prepare holders of the FCC Technician Class License to take the General Class examination, and to use their new privileges.

This 10 week course will cover the advanced knowledge needed to understand the requirements and to be able to pass a 35-question written examination.

Contact Redd, AI2N, for more information at


Parents of Special Children, Inc. will host a free workshop on “Understanding Diploma and Credential Options” for parents and guardians of students of disabilities.

This training is from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Jan. 28 at the Parents of Special Children headquarters at 2 Tower Drive., Fulton.

The program will provide families with important information to help them understand these options to become an active participant in the transition planning process.

Topics to be discussed include the current graduation/diploma options in New York state, the current credential/exiting options in the state and the importance of career development occupational studies.

A light lunch will be provided.


A class on fused glass is being offered from 10 a.m. to noon Feb. 1 at Lakeside Artisans, 191 W. First St., Oswego.

“Say it with Class; Say it with Glass!” will allow attendees to make fused glass ornaments that can be hung on a window or wall. They are perfect for a homemade Valentine’s gift.

Diane Chepko-Sade is the instructor. The class is limited to eight students, which may include children 10 and older as well as adults.

The registration fee is $10. For more information, contact Lakeside Artisans at 342-8880 or or visit us at Facebook and our website, .


A benefit for Fulton native Amy Arden Finch is scheduled for 2 to 6 p.m. Feb. 22 at he Timber Tavern, outside Baldwinsville.

Event organizers Dave Finch and Tina Shinya said the event is being held to encourage community involvement and support to help Amy work through the financial and emotional burden of her fight with breast cancer.

She has gone through eight chemo treatments, is scheduled for a double mastectomy in February and then radiation treatments to follow. She has continued to work as it helps her personally focus on something else and keeps her spirits up.

The benefit will include food, drinks, music, raffles and prizes.


Free literacy classes available through Oswego BOCES

Submitted by Oswego County BOCES

Adults seeking to improve their literacy skills can do so through a free series of classes offered by Oswego County BOCES.

The classes provide valuable skills for adults who are looking to earn a High School Equivalency (HSE) diploma. Openings are available in Mexico and Pulaski.

In Mexico, the course takes place from 1 to 4 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays at BOCES (179 County Route 64).

The Pulaski class runs from 6 to 9 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Pulaski Junior/Senior High School (46245 Salina St.)

Other courses, with limited openings, are held in Central Square and Oswego, with a distance learning option available as well.

To participate in the distance learning class, students must be at least 21 years old, have a reading level of sixth grade or above and be able to work well independently.

The course is designed to teach students essential skills to prepare them for the new HSE exam, which went into effect Jan. 1.

Students who took the former GED exam between 2002 and 2013 and received passing subtest scores but did not pass all five sections of the exam will be able to keep the passing scores and just work on the areas that need improvement through Dec. 31, 2015.

In addition to the general literacy courses, BOCES also provides an English reading, writing and speaking class for speakers of other languages.

Students age 16 and older, of all levels of English proficiency, are welcome to attend the course.

Classes are held from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays in the Oswego Public Library Community Room.

For more information or to enroll in the classes, call 963-4256.

New 4-H robotics club excels at first competition

Cornell Cooperative Extension of Oswego County has begun a robotics 4-H Club that is seeing great success.

The TaskMasters 4-H Club participated in the Hudson Valley Regional FIRST Technology Challenge and scored enough points to place seventh out of 24 teams.

As a rookie team, this was quite an accomplishment; they outscored numerous veteran teams of high schoolers.

The FIRST Technology Challenge, FTC, is a student-centered activity that focuses on giving students a unique and stimulating experience.

Each year, teams participate in a new game that requires them to design, build, test and program autonomous and driver-operated robots that must perform a series of tasks.

This year’s game, Block Party, required the teams to move yellow blocks into goals and bins. The teams work with another team as an alliance to score more point than their opponents.

FTC participants develop a greater appreciation of science and technology and how they might use that knowledge to impact the world around them in a positive manner.

They also cultivate life skills such as:

** Planning, brainstorming and creative problem-solving

** Research and technical skills

** Collaboration and teamwork

Appreciation of differences and respect for the ideas and contributions of others.

The TaskMasters 4-H Club used Tetrix and NXT kits to build their robot and National Instrument’s LabView to program it.

The 4-H Club’s members — Nate Kraus, Eric Davis, Dante LaVergne and Liam Gnadt — are extremely grateful for all the mentors that assisted the club in preparing for the tournament: Bob Davis, Bill Gnadt, Christine Gnadt, Trevor LaVergne and Tim Kraus.

The TaskMasters 4-H Club meets on Thursday nights and its membership is open to sixth-graders and older. They will be participating in Oswego County 4-H’s Public Presentation Program before they return to learning and working with robots.

To receive information about the Oswego County 4-H and its Robotics Program,  contact Linda Brosch, 4-H team coordinator for Cornell Cooperative Extension of Oswego County, at 963-7286, ext. 400.