Plans finalized for Recreation Park upgrade; Class of ’75 members join in fundraising efforts

By Matthew Reitz
Upgrades to Fulton’s Recreation Park, including a new boat launch, playground equipment and restored pavilion, will move forward this summer.
Officials with Friends of Fulton Parks, the nonprofit that has been coordinating the endeavor, say the first phase of the project is fully funded and set to begin this summer with the installation of strength and conditioning equipment designed for teenagers.
The equipment was selected with help from students at Fulton Junior High School, who were asked to choose items that are of particular interest to their age group.
The second phase, also expected to begin this year, will restore the existing pavilion structure and add a cement floor with a wheelchair-accessible ramp. The existing slide and swing set at the park are still functional and will remain in place, FOFP officials say.
A third phase of the project, currently scheduled for 2016, would install ropes and other climbing equipment geared toward helping children improve their agility.
Kelley Weaver of Friends of Fulton Parks said the estimated cost for all three phases of the project is $375,000.
The project is being funded mostly through state funds acquired by state Sen. Patricia Ritchie’s office and Friends of Fulton Parks. Weaver said “a significant portion” of the second and third phases are covered, but FOFP is still looking to make up the difference.
The organization still needs to raise $87,000 for the project, according to Weaver. She said the group has been able to collect over $40,000 to date with contributions from local businesses and residents.
“Support from service organizations, the Fulton YMCA, local businesses, residents and former residents of all ages, and the city council and parks department has been overwhelmingly positive,” Weaver said.
Several community groups and businesses have been working hand-in-hand with FOFP in efforts to both raise money for park upgrades and clean the parks for the season. The latest to join the efforts is the GRB Class of 1975, which will be celebrating its 40th class reunion this summer. As part of their reunion, class members have been raising funds to contribute to the Recreation Park restoration project.
“Their goal was $2,000,” Weaver said, “and they may surpass that goal.”
Collen Madigan, a Class of ’75 member, said she felt “very fortunate” to have grown up in Fulton, and thought donating to the restoration of Recreation Park was a way to give back to the community. Madigan said she “enjoyed the simple joys of childhood” in Fulton’s parks.
“My classmates and I enjoyed Recreation Park, Stevenson Beach, swimming at Lake Neatahwanta, family picnics, baseball games, roller skating, and even our graduation at the War Memorial,” Madigan said.
Anyone who would like to help with the project or fundraising can contact Friends of Fulton Parks at

Plans finalized for War Memorial project

By Colin Hogan
City officials awarded the bid for the floor replacement at the Fulon War Memorial Tuesday — a project they now hope can begin by the end of the month.
The 19-year-old gymnasium floor has deteriorated so much in recent years that it has begun interfering with some of the facility’s events. As one of the city’s bigger venues, the War Memorial plays host to several major events each year, including the Fulton Home Show (which was on hiatus this year), train shows, circuses and concerts. The facility also accommodates several community sports programs, such as the men’s and youth basketball leagues and volleyball matches.
Over the last few years, expanding rebar in the concrete compound beneath the floor’s surface has caused the material to spall, and a study commissioned by the city last year revealed that the floor contains a presence of mercury, as well.
On Tuesday, the Common Council awarded a bid for the work to Genessee Environmental LLC of Rochester. Genessee was one of two companies vying for the project. Their bid came in at $363,471, with a possible credit of $7,530 — nearly $30,000 less than the other bidder.
City officials said Tuesday that the bids were first reviewed by Liverpool-based engineering firm Barton & Loguidice, which recommended the council go with Genessee. Last fall, the city secured a $400,000 bond to finance the project.
Mayor Ron Woodward Sr. said he still hopes the project can begin by the end of the month.
“They’ll have to come in and do some sampling, which should take about a week, and then they could start any time after that,” Woodward said. “We want to get them in there so we can get this done.”
City officials previously estimated that it would take three to four weeks to remove the rubber floor layer, another two to three weeks to remove the concrete, and about four weeks for the new concrete to cure.

Granby officials to make a decision on proposed ATV trail

By Matthew Reitz
The Town of Granby Planning Board will be determining the fate of a proposed ATV trail on South Granby Road that some residents in that area are opposing.
The proposed ATV trail would be created at 371 South Granby Road; a 43-acre parcel a few hundred feet west of county Route 14.
According to Town Supervisor Ed Williamson, a public hearing was held last week for members of the community with questions or comments regarding the project. Williamson said about 15 people attended the hearing and “there were some skeptics.”
“There are always people that are a little skeptical, but they seemed to answer everyone’s questions,” Williamson said.
A few concerned residents were circulating a flyer encouraging people to attend a planning board work session on Thursday, May 21. The same residents wrote a letter to the planning board urging it to deny a special use permit for the trail. The letter questions the intent of the property owner and suggests that the owner misled neighbors “by telling them they intended to reside” at the location.
Doug MacEwan, a resident of Granby who was unaware of the proposal until he was presented with the flyer, said he was a bit uneasy about the possibility of the trail generating noise and disturbing the community, but noted that noise in a farming community like Granby can be inescapable.
“It’s a rural farming community,” MacEwan said. “We put up with noise and tractors, the animals, the smells — that comes with the territory.”
MacEwan expressed concern about the potential for loud parties at the trail, and he also was uncomfortable with the owners not being a part of the community.
“What was a little troubling is that the owner is not local,” MacEwan said. “It seems a little odd.”
According to Oswego County’s Real Property Database, the owner of the property is Granby Properties LLC.  The address listed for Granby Properties is in Baldwinsville; about a 20-minute drive from the Granby site.
Jim Karasek, chairman of the Town of Granby Planning Board, said the property owner was “going through the process of approval” and had “gone above and beyond what is required” during the application process.  The application calls for the development of a sand track for personal use, according to Karasek.
“These people (the residents opposing the project) aren’t representing what this man has asked for,” Karasek said in reference to the flyer.
Karasek said he sympathized with people who have legitimate concerns, but added that the planning board has to look at the application and local zoning laws to determine whether or not to approve the project.
“We can only go by what’s on the application and what’s in the zoning book,” Karasek said.
He noted that the application is not for a business, and that Granby is a “rural community” with “no noise, dust, or land use ordinances” to restrict property owners.
“There’s not a lot we can do to stop them,” Karasek said.
Karasek noted that the property owner is willing to make some concessions, and said if the property is misused, the owner would be ticketed for code violations and have to appear in court.
The public hearing regarding the proposed trail was held last week, but the planning board would be listening to residents at its work session on May 21, according to Karasek.
“We will listen. We’ve always heard what people have to say,” Karasek said.
Williamson said it was possible the planning board could make a decision as early as May 21.

Bernard Drake

Bernard Drake, 95, of Fulton was buried noon Friday, May 22 at Jacksonville Cemetery, Lysander with the last rite of committal to be given by Rev. Jeff O’Brien. Military honors will be bestowed by the U.S. Navy Honor Guard.  The Sugar Funeral Home, Inc., 224 W. 2nd St. S. Fulton has care of the arrangements.

Lawrence “Larry” Galvin, Sr.

Galvin, LarryLawrence “Larry” Galvin, Sr., 84, of Oswego and formerly of Fulton, passed away Sunday, May 17 at his home. Larry was a 22-year Army veteran and was the recipient of the Bronze Star, Vietnam Service Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal, Good Conduct Medal Silver Clasp with One Loop, National Defense Service Medal with Oak Leaf Cluster, Expert Badge Rifle M14 and the Meritorious Unit Citation. He had served two tours in Korea and Vietnam. Larry was an active member of the Fulton Christian and Missionary Alliance Church where he served as a deacon for 12 years; on the board of ministry, taught bible studies, a leader of the prayer chain as well as visiting people in the hospital, nursing home and private residences. Larry also hosted missionaries in his home and was involved in missionary work. Larry was predeceased by his wife of 62 years, the former Patricia A. Clark Galvin, who passed away November 15, 2013, and a brother, Fredrick Galvin, who passed away in 2004.
Surviving are his eight children, Gail (Mark) Steele of Md., Larry (Nanette) Galvin, Jr. of Ill., Brent (Cathy) Galvin of Hannibal, Mike (Denice) Galvin of Minetto, Vicky (Mike) Hokanson of Fulton, Jeannie (Tim) Salisbury of Buffalo, Tricia (Jeff) Spoto of N. Syracuse and Linda (Chad) Sheldon of Fulton; 20 grandchildren; 30 great-grandchildren, who also knew him as ‘CooCoo,’ because of his famous birdcalls.
Calling hours were Friday, May 22 at Foster Funeral Home, 910 Fay St., Fulton.  A graveside service with Military Honors will be held at noon today at St. Mary’s Cemetery, S. Seventh St., Fulton. Contributions in memory of Larry may be made to The Gregory J. Harris Military Courtesy Room at Hancock International Airport, 5701 E. Circle Drive #335, Cicero, New York 13039.

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