Sandy Creek, Mexico, Oswego medal in final OCAY contest

Submitted by Oswego County BOCES

Capturing third place in the Oswego County Academic Youth League Shark Tank event was the team from Oswego High School. Team coach Kayley Morse is pictured with (back row) Garrett Dunsmoor, Joe Clavelli, Evan Davis, Lainey Celeste and Emily Hurlbutt. Front: Nina Alcasid, Tara Stacy, Mallory Gordon, Tory Welsch and Alex Kouthoofd.
Capturing third place in the Oswego County Academic Youth League Shark Tank event was the team from Oswego High School. Team coach Kayley Morse is pictured with (back row) Garrett Dunsmoor, Joe Clavelli, Evan Davis, Lainey Celeste and Emily Hurlbutt. Front: Nina Alcasid, Tara Stacy, Mallory Gordon, Tory Welsch and Alex Kouthoofd.

Student representatives from eight area school districts were tasked with developing a company that promotes Oswego County tourism as part of the fourth and final competition of the year for the Oswego County Academic Youth (OCAY) League.

Students devised companies that promoted the county’s strongest resources, with each team creating their own company name and logo. Promotional materials such as a tri-fold brochure and a 30-second commercial were also required.

Two team members from each school pitched their company idea to a panel of investors, similar to the business-themed show Shark Tank.

Students needed to persuade the group of investors in order to gain their trust, and financial backing. Each school named their price, suppliers and described how the loan would be used.

The challenge also consisted of four timed math quizzes, related to marketing and business. The commercial portion was presented as a live skit. The advertisement needed to appeal to the company’s target audience, and effectively endorse and define company goals in order to maximize profits.

In the end, gold was awarded to the team from Sandy Creek for their “Shark Tank Resort,” a $15 million venue that would feature an aquarium, live music and dinner theatre. They would attract tourists to Lake Ontario by renting out jet skis, and offer snowmobilers with special packages in the winter.

Silver was presented to the team from Mexico for “Lake View Tours,” a guided tour that would bus travelers to popular sites in Oswego County. The schedule included a visit to Fort Ontario, lunch at Rudy’s Lakeside Drive-In and stops at Mexico Point, Selkirk Shores and Salmon River Falls.

Bronze was awarded to the Oswego team for “Sunset Sails,” a sailboat tour company with the tagline “Keep Calm, Sail On.”

The OCAY League was organized in the spring of 1997 with the idea that academics merit a standing comparable to athletics.

Students’ academic skills are challenged and showcased in a wide variety of competitive events that emphasize scholastic excellence, team building, leadership and creativity.

A particular strength of the league is its emphasis on cooperative problem solving. OCAY League is coordinated through Oswego County BOCES’ Instructional Support Services as part of the Gifted and Talented Programs cooperative services.

Members of the Mexico team are Samantha McAuslan, Nick Higby, Kyle Hall, Jacob Delos, Sydney Ryan, Elizabeth Becker, Chloe Partrick and Natalie Scorzzeli. The adviser is Bill Coughlin.

Members of the Sandy Creek team are Sarah McDougal, Jay Ivison, Collin Reff, Jacob Cornell, Zach Halsey, Anita Glenister, Josh Lococo, Molly Horth, Clarice Thibault and Lexi Goodnough. Adviser is Caitlin Urlacher.

Animals benefit from Leighton candy

Members of the Frederick Leighton Elementary School Student Council conducted their annual “candy-gram” fundraiser and donated $125 to the Oswego Animal Shelter. Gathering at the facility were (front row left to right) Emmalee French, Aidan Robbins, Sophia Delorenzo, Gretchen Dowd and Linsey Lawton while in back were Advisor Jennifer Symborski, Abby McPherson, Ella Shambo, Aubrey Avery and Elijah Shambo.

4 BOCES students place at state SkillsUSA event

5-3_SCHOOLSskillsusaSubmitted by Oswego County BOCES

Career and Technical Education students from Oswego County BOCES joined more than 2,000 students from other BOCES, technical career centers and high schools for the 48th Annual New York State Leadership and SkillsUSA Championships.

The conference gave BOCES students an opportunity to showcase their skills in a variety of technical, trade and leadership contests.

Business and industry professionals judged the more than 80 contests that took place at the conference at the New York State Fairgrounds. Oswego County BOCES students where recognized for outstanding achievement in four different contest areas.

Computer Systems and Networking (Cisco) student Perrin Ogden, from the Fulton school district, was awarded a first place, gold medal in the Internetworking contest.

This timed contest consisted of three components to tests the students’ skill and knowledge of networking concepts. A team of professionals currently in the networking industry assessed the contestants’ ability to design, install, adapt, maintain and manage an Internetworking system.

Floral Design and Greenhouse Technology student Kaitlyn Naylor, from the Central Square district, was awarded a first place, gold medal in the floral design contest.

For this timed contest, Naylor and her fellow contestants prepared a floral centerpiece, a corsage and a wedding design and then calculated a cost and suggested retail business report for each design.

Construction Technology student Vince Hall, from the Altmar-Parish-Williamstown district, was awarded a second place, silver medal in the carpentry contest.

This timed contest assessed each participant’s ability to read and interpret blueprints as well as workmanship and proper use of tools and equipment.

Hall and the other contestants framed walls using wood and steel studs; cut and installed rafters; and then installed drywall, baseboard moldings and window trim.

Nursing assistant student Marissa Lopergola from the Central Square district  competed in the medical math contest and was awarded a third place, bronze medal for her ability to solve mathematic problems encountered in the medical profession.

The New York State SkillsUSA Conference is a precursor to the National SkillsUSA Leadership Conference and SkillsUSA Championships held in Kansas City, Missouri at the end of June.

Perrin Ogden’s first place finish in the Internetworking contest has earned him the honor to represent Oswego County BOCES and New York State at the upcoming conference.

Senator honors “Women of Distinction”

Eighteen women from Oswego County were  honored Thursday May 1 by state Sen. Patricia Ritchie.

They are being named “Women of Distinction” through the New York State Senate’s yearly program to honor women who have made a difference, including teachers, activists, advocates and other change-makers.

All honorees were recognized at a special event at 5:30 p.m. Thursday at  Watertown’s historic Roswell P. Flower Memorial Library.

The Women of Distinction program honors women’s history in the Empire State by recognizing outstanding leaders and everyday citizens from the present who are making a difference.

“Over the past several years I’ve been humbled to have been given the opportunity to recognize the amazing women of this region,” Ritchie said.

“From teachers who have inspired countless students to those who make it their life’s mission to help those in need, this group of women is truly dynamic,” she said.

Last year, 17 women from Central and Northern New York were honored. This year’s honorees are:

Oswego County

Stacy Austin-Root, Melissa Baker, Melanie Proper, Maureen McClain, Carol Gazitano, Tracy Henry, Amanda Capeling, Norene Cook and Sandy Delano — staff of the Child Advocacy Center of Oswego County, Fulton, for all the work they do with children “to ensure that children who have suffered abuse are able to cope with their feelings, recover, and once again enjoy their childhood,” said nominator John DeRousie

Jane Backus, of Mexico, retired English teacher at Mexico High School, contributed to the design of the school’s Quest Program, served on the SUNY Oswego College Council for five years, editing the Mother Goose Nursery School newsletter, volunteering for the Mexico JROTC program and cooking for the Mexico Methodist Church “Monday Meal,” serving as a sacristan and lector at St. Anne, Mother of Mary Catholic Church and serves on Rep. Richard Hanna’s Military Academy Review Committee.

Karrie Damm, LMFT, executive director of the Child Advocacy Center of Oswego County, Fulton, led the charge to open a satellite office of the center in Pulaski, active in the community, was once named one of the “Top 100 Most Inspiring Women” by Girl Scouts of America.

Michelle Hughes, of Pulaski, very active in the Pulaski community, a member of the Preservation and Restoration of Pulaski Committee, is a St. Baldrick’s Cancer Research Benefit volunteer and a volunteer for the Pulaski Academy and Central Schools. She also owns her own business,  “A Cut Above Full Service Salon,”.

Denise Simmons, of West Monroe, a mother of three often found exploring nature,  fishing in the North Country’s many rivers and streams and hunting in the deep wildernesses.

She volunteers with Baldwinsville Rod and Gun Club, Madison County Friends of the NRA, Onondaga County Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs and has been involved with Central New York Friends of the NRA.

Roxanne Stewart, of Fulton, teacher, president of the resident council at Michaud Residential Health Services, “has become a tireless advocate, pushing for better living conditions for nursing facilities.”

The Rev. Brenda Weissenberg, of Central Square, involved with foster care program, she serves on the Board of Directors for Oswego County Foster Parents, Central Square Pop Warner, Hastings Mallory PTO, Parish Community Pre-School and the Fort Brewerton Chamber of Commerce.

The Rev. Meredith Williams, of Oswego, teacher who also assists in food drives, facilitates Art Club, Christian Club and is an active member of Positive Behavioral Interventions. She is an assistant pastor, provides security for the church and is the owner of Trinity Art Studio.

Susan Witmer, of Oswego, long-time volunteer with Oswego Rotary, Rural Health Network of Oswego County, and Emergency Planning Committee for Oswego County, United Way Cayuga Community College, Oswego County Humane Society, Youth Soccer League and High School Sports Boosters. She was instrumental in the “Stuff a Bus Bookmobile,” Stone Soup canned food drive, Ronald McDonald House collection and Salvation Army canned food drives.

Teresa Woolson, of Oswego, took the tragedy of losing her son to synthetic drugs use and turned it into a positive for the community, opening a nonprofit foundation, the Victor Orlando Woolson Foundation, created in her son’s memory that aims to assist and educate the public in an effort to make the community a safer place.

In addition, Teresa’s advocacy was also the catalyst behind comprehensive legislation addressing synthetic drugs in New York state. She also is involved in Bridges out of Poverty, COACH, Friends of the Oswego Public Library, WNET, Vineyard Church and other organization.

Those honored from the other two counties in Ritchie’s Senate district are:

St. Lawrence County

  • Ilene Burke
  • Virginia Davey
  • Kelly Glasgow
  • Imogene Wagner
  • Lila Youngs

Jefferson County

  • Joanne Lazore
  • Cari McAvoy
  • JoAnn Reed

Breakfast, lunch, dinner

Beginning this week, The Valley News is going to make it easier to find the pancake breakfasts and chicken barbecues going on in the area.

Instead of these being listed under “News in Brief,” they will now be listed under this “Breakfast, lunch, dinner” headline. All food events will be listed here.

Here goes:


The First Congregational Church of New Haven is holding an eat-in or take-out dinner from noon until gone Saturday, May 3 (today).

Preorders are available to be picked up between noon and 2 p.m.

The dinner will contain ½ chicken, pulled pork, pasta salad, salt potatoes, roll and butter. Call 963-3118 and leave a message with your name, phone number and the number of dinners you want. You will receive a call back to confirm your order and to make arrangements for you to buy the tickets needed for your dinner(s).

The church is located at 4250 State Route 104 in New Haven. The church is just west of County Route 6.


Mt. Pleasant Grange at 2825 County Route 45 will have its waffle breakfast from 7:30 to 11 a.m., Saturday May 10.

Waffles will be topped with peach and served with the usual breakfast buffet and with sugar-free toppings. Takeouts will be available.

Also upstairs at the Grange, the Treasure Sale will be open from 8 to 11 a.m.


The Pennellville United Methodist Church, 389 County Route 54 in Pennellville will have its last dinner of the season at 4 p.m. Saturday, May 10.

The menu will consist of roast pork, dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy, beans, coleslaw, rolls and butter.  Attendees also can choose from a wide selection of pies and other desserts. Coffee, tea, cool aid and water will also be available.

The dinner is served family style. Music will be provided while you wait to be seated.  The ladies from the church also have a variety of crafts and goodies for sale.  There is a large supply of used books available at reasonable prices.

The next dinner will be Sept. 13.


Lamson Grange #588 will serve its all-you-can-eat Belgian waffle breakfast buffet featuring  made-to-order waffles with peach or warmed syrup  topping from 8 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday, May 10.

This buffet will also include eggs, bacon, sausage, white and wheat toast, English muffins, jam, cereals, whipped topping, juice, coffee, tea, and milk.

Lamson Grange is located at 9108 Fenner Road, Lysander, corner of Lamson Road and Fenner Road.


Trinity United Methodist Church in Oswego will have a chicken barbecue from noon until sold out Saturday, May 17.

The menu consists of a half barbecued chicken, salt potatoes, salad, rolls, baked beans, beverage and dessert. Attendees can eat in or take out.

Trinity United Methodist Church is located at 45 E. Utica St., corner of East fourth in Oswego.

Learn about Battle of Oswego May 10

Attack on Oswego – From an Old Print. Benson Lossing’s Fieldbook of the War of 1812.
Attack on Oswego – From an Old Print. Benson Lossing’s Fieldbook of the War of 1812.

On Saturday, May 10, Superintendent Paul Lear will lead a walking tour of the 1814 Battle of Oswego at Fort Ontario State Historic Site.

The tour will begin at 1:45 p.m. at the tunnel entrance of the old stone fort. It is free and open to the public. Appropriate footwear and clothing for cooler and windier conditions along the lake are recommended.

Lake Ontario was the main theater of action during the War of 1812, and Oswego was an important forwarding point on the waterborne supply route from New York City to the US Navy shipyard and port at Sackets Harbo.

On May 5 and 6, 1814, a British amphibious force from Kingston, Ontario attacked and captured Fort Ontario and Oswego after a two-day battle. During the walking tour event, Lear will discuss the individuals and units involved, what actions they took, and the results of the battle.

Fort Ontario State Historic Site is located at the north end of East Fourth Street in  Oswego. For more information on Fort Ontario or the walking tour event, call Paul Lear at 343-4711, or email

Save time, money by visiting local DMVs

Submitted by Oswego County

Oswego County Clerk Michael C. Backus is encouraging local residents to save time and money by using one of the three local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) offices for their motor vehicle transactions.

Residents can renew their registrations at DMVs in Pulaski, Oswego and Fulton. Vehicle renewals can be mailed to the Oswego Motor Vehicle Office at 384 E. River Road, Oswego, 13126.

Backus notes that all motorcycle registrations expire April 30.

“When people mail their DMV renewals to the Oswego office, a portion of the fees collected by the DMV remains in Oswego County and helps hold the line on local property taxes,” said Backus.

​Backus said it’s important for local residents to know that if they mail their registration renewal to the Oswego DMV office, they must cover or cross out the postal bar code that is pre-printed on the DMV envelope.

“The envelopes that the DMV sends with the vehicle renewals are pre-printed with the Utica address bar code,” he said. “If the bar code isn’t covered or crossed out, the letter will be delivered to Utica, even if it has an Oswego address on it.”

Oswego County DMV offices are open weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. and are located at 384 E. River Road, Oswego; 200 N. Second St., Fulton; and 2 Broad St., Pulaski.

For information call 349-8300; 591-9136; or 298-6521.

Nuke siren tests set for week of May 5

Submitted by Oswego County

Dale Currier, director of the Oswego County Emergency Management Office, says the system of emergency notification sirens surrounding the three nuclear power plants at Nine Mile Point are scheduled to be tested Monday, May 5, through Friday, May 9, between 4 and 8 p.m.

The test is a portion of the regular testing program of the Oswego County emergency alert system. This quarterly testing includes individual activation of each siren.

No response by the public is required during these tests. Should an actual event occur during the time of testing, the Emergency Alert System would be activated on radio and TV stations providing directions to members of the public.

The system of sirens and tone-alert weather radios in the 10-mile emergency planning zone surrounding the nuclear power plants at Nine Mile Point is designed to alert residents in the event of an emergency.

Tone-alert weather radios are provided to residences in the 10-mile zone that are out of hearing range of the sirens. A listing of residences eligible for tone-alert weather radios is on file at the Emergency Management Office, 200 N. Second St., Fulton.

During an emergency, the sirens would be sounded for three minutes to alert residents of the area to turn their radios or televisions to local Emergency Alert System (EAS) stations for further information and instructions.

EAS stations are listed in the 2014 “Public Emergency Response Information” calendar that was mailed to residents of the Emergency Planning Zone in January.

The calendar is available online at EAS stations are also listed in the yellow pages of local telephone directories.

Anyone who has questions concerning the upcoming siren tests or any aspect of emergency planning may contact the Oswego County Emergency Management Office at 591-9150 or (800) 962-2792.

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