Buccaneer Bulletin launches website

Buccaneer Bulletin, the official newspaper of Oswego High School, has begun a new website.

The website is accessed at www.buccaneerbulletin.com and opened for public access April 1.

“This has been a fun collaboration between the people at iHeart Oswego and the staff at Buc Bulletin,” said Rachel Purtell, webmaster of the new Buccaneer Bulletin website.

“We wanted a site that we could access, make changes to every day and had relevancy to the student body. iHeart helped make that happen for us,” she said.

“They donated their services, expertise and time to create an up-to-date, eye appealing website that offers the flexibility we needed. Students can access a gallery of photos taken by the staff, sports and clubs announcements, lunch menus and current weather conditions.”

“In addition you will be able to view the live feed from our Facebook page.” said Editor-in-Chief Tara Stacy. “We feel the new website will give our peers instant access to our content and will allow us to better adapt to the ever-changing world of journalism.”

The website will feature both current and past issues back to 2005.  The staff wants people who are more comfortable with online reading to be able to check out the newspaper from their computer, phone or tablet.

The online version will also offer additional advertising opportunities for businesses and organizations.

For more information about the Buccaneer Bulletin, call 341-2200 and ask for Room 129 and visit us on www.BuccaneerBulletin.com.

Program put SUNY Oswego students on bikes

Submitted by SUNY Oswego

The new SUNY Oswego Bike Share program provides refurbished bicycles to students up to a semester at a time to encourage fitness and cost savings while helping cut down on car trips.

Cycling and recycling come naturally to Alex Elkins, a senior technology education major and founder of SUNY Oswego Bike Share.

He races mountain bikes on a national level, rides about 10,000 miles year-round and works in a Rochester bicycle shop, where he applies skills he needed to learn to afford racing.

“We’re going to teach basic maintenance to borrowers. To those so inclined, we’ll teach advanced maintenance,” Elkins said. “That’s a big part of sustainability, along with fitness and saving gas — you can save a lot of money fixing your own bike.”

Bike Share’s headquarters are in the basement of Hewitt Union on campus, where students can apply for one of 15 bicycles the club has ready to go.

With other two-wheelers scavenged for parts, Bike Share has received about 25 donations of used bicycles from the Oswego community, Elkins and his contacts in Rochester, University Police and other campus staff, and from roadside discards.

Contact sustainability@oswego.edu to make a donation.

SUNY Oswego Bike Share has received assistance from the college’s Facilities Design and Construction office. Graduate assistant Jason MacLeod recruited Elkins and has helped him launch the program, and campus sustainability coordinators Mike Lotito and Jamie Adams encouraged the program with new tools, repurposed space in Hewitt Union and other startup necessities.

Adams and Lotito pointed out that vehicular traffic accounts for about a third of Oswego’s contribution to greenhouse gases as a lot of people drive around campus, as well as to and from it.

“The bike-sharing program is right up there on our roadmap for strategically reducing the college’s carbon footprint, and at the same time proving health and wellness on campus,” Adams said. SUNY Oswego, through its Climate Action Plan and the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment, is pursuing strategies to reduce emissions up to 40 percent by 2020.

Elkins said Bike Share has built accountability into its program: statements of need, waivers, locks to go with each bicycle, encouragement to share the two-wheeler with others and, as experience and growth dictate, perhaps a deposit that includes a fee to help the program safeguard its investment and pay its way.

“I want to see people take responsibility for the bikes,” he said.

Elkins, who will student teach in technology this fall, said he minors in sustainability and comes by his interest in cycling through his parents, who both ride and minimize driving.

“Bike Share is right on point with what I’m interested in,” he said. “My passion is cycling and the outdoors. Why not share that in this way?”

For more information on sustainability initiatives at the college, visit www.oswego.edu/sustainability.

 

FULTON FAMILIES – The good earth: The Vescios’ roots go deep in Fulton

Front page – The Vescios gathered for youngest child June’s baptism in November 1934. This photo appeared with a story about the family in The Post-Standard. Photo courtesy of Sam Vescio
Front page – The Vescios gathered for youngest child June’s baptism in November 1934. This photo appeared with a story about the family in The Post-Standard.
Photo courtesy of Sam Vescio

Editor’s note: This is the seventh installment of stories about Fulton Families. The monthly series will tell the stories of families that have either lived in Fulton for ages or perhaps only a short while — but the common bond will be they love the city and wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. If you know of a family we should highlight, please email Debbie Groom, Valley News managing editor, at dgroom@scotsmanmediagroup.com. 

By Ashley M. Casey

“One of Fulton’s Largest Families: Vescio’s 12 Children Range From 5 Months to 18 Years” reads the 1934 Post-Standard clipping’s headline.

Although the story is 80 years old, it’s not unlike headlines found in The Valley News today. Now, the Vescios’ appearance in the local media has come full circle.

Of the 14 children born to Angelo and Rosina Vescio, only 12 lived to adulthood. Today, four of the original Vescio children are alive in Fulton: Joe, Sam, Ellen and June. Sam Vescio, now 87, and his daughter, Rosemary Vescio Pollard, shared their story of what keeps them in the city that their clan has called home for more than a century. Continue reading

Migrating geese focus of SUNY Oswego Quest Day presentation

Submitted by SUNY Oswego

Two SUNY Oswego students and a biological sciences faculty member are studying whether changing weather patterns affect the migratory paths and ecological relationships of Canada geese from northern Quebec.

They will share findings April 9 during the college’s annual Quest day.

Junior biology major Jeffrey Benjamin and junior meteorology and applied mathematics major Tyler Pelle have worked since last fall on the project with SUNY Oswego zoologist, ornithology specialist and faculty member Michael Schummer, in cooperation with the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

They are using high-end, temperature-sensing remote wildlife cameras for their study.

“We have to know what makes them migrate before we can determine what could change their patterns,” Schummer said of the geese. “What types of weather variables influence the behaviors of these geese?”

Benjamin has pored over thousands of photos of geese at the Junius Ponds Unique Area northwest of Waterloo, while Pelle has painstakingly correlated the cameras’ temperature data with that of the National Operational Hydrologic Remote Sensing Center, known for its ground-based, airborne and satellite snowfall analyses.

At the college’s Quest symposium April 9, the students will make two presentations — one focused on abundance and foraging patterns as a function of temperature of what is known as the Atlantic Population of Canada geese, the other on reliability of the cameras’ own weather data.

“I find more and more that if you are interested in waterfowl, you’ll need to consult with a meteorologist or a climatologist,” Schummer said. “It’s really fun, because it’s two different languages that have to meld together.”

Quest is the college’s daylong celebration of scholarship and creativity on campus. The young scientists’ project with Schummer benefited from a grant provided by the college’s Scholarly and Creative Activity Committee.

 Publications possible

Benjamin said the Reconyx PC 900 professional wildlife cameras went up at the Junius Ponds location in October and came down when the ponds froze over in January.

In the interim, the DEC-owned instruments took a photo every hour during daylight hours. At peak during the migration, the week of Dec. 6, Benjamin counted more than 1,000 birds on the pond each day.

Pelle and Benjamin also tracked the geese’s daily foraging flights and other movements, determined types and amounts of precipitation and tracked daily average temperature.

While both students are headed back to remount the cameras this spring, it will be Benjamin who carries the project forward this fall.

“I think that with another year’s worth of data, there’s capability to get this published in a regional journal, if not in a bird journal, and possibly presented at a regional conference,” he said.

Schummer, who with the assistance of graduate students has previously studied mallards’ migratory behavior in relation to climatic factors, agreed.

“My goal always with students is to present locally, regionally and internationally if you can, and to follow up with a peer-reviewed article,” he said. “I expect to keep these guys busy. It’s in their best interests — it really helps them if they go on to do master’s degrees.”

Visit www.oswego.edu/quest for more information, including times and locations for presentations.

Aldi’s wants to come to Fulton

By Ashley M. Casey

The supermarket chain Aldi Inc. has requested a special use permit from the city of Fulton to begin building a store on the former Nestlé site on the corner of Fay and South Fourth streets.

The Common Council approved a resolution to set a public hearing April 15 for the special use permit.

Mayor Ron Woodward told The Valley News Aldi and the site’s owner, Carbonstead LLC, approached the city about a month ago about the proposed construction. The property falls under the Manufacturing M-1 district and would need to be re-zoned as Commercial C-2.

According to Aldi’s special use permit application, the store will be 17,651 square feet.

Aldi is a German supermarket chain that operates 1,200 stores in the United States and 9,235 stores globally.

The public hearing will be held at the next Common Council meeting — 7 p.m., April 15, in the Common Council Chambers of the Municipal Building, 141 S. First St. Continue reading

Phoenix 8th-grade hoops has memorable season

By Rob Tetro

The Phoenix girls’ eighth-grade basketball team came into the season losing three players to the Lady Firebirds junior varsity and varsity teams.

But coach Jen Mainville was able to bring an advanced seventh-grade player to the team.

As the season began, the Lady Firebirds had several goals. One was to develop into a well-balanced, focused and confident team despite the lineup changes they experienced.

Mainville said her team rose to the challenge. They became a team that displayed great chemistry on and off the court en route to an undefeated season.

Phoenix wanted to be a team able to score in transition. They proved to be a smart team with athletic players who were able to rebound, made a quick pass and move up the court at asolid pace.

Mainville said the most memorable moment of the season came when her team got a rebound, made the quick pass and went on to execute textbook transition basketball.

As her players move on to the next level of the Phoenix girls’ basketball program, Mainville feels her team will bring three key characteristics to those teams.

Her players displayed and succeeded this season because of the love they have for the game and their determination to improve. Most importantly, Mainville said  her players will continue to succeed at the next level because of the pride with which they play.

Oswego County unemployment rate in double digits

By Debra J. Groom

Oswego County’s unemployment rate remains in double digits for February 2014.

Although the rate is down from a year ago, it is still one of the highest in the state.

In February 2013, the jobless rate was 11.7 percent, while in February 2014, it was 10 percent.

The February 2014 rate of 10 percent is up from the January 2014 rate of 9.7 percent.

All unemployment rates in Central New York counties for February 2014 are down from a year ago.

Chris White, speaking for the state Labor Department, said Oswego County has been hit harder than other counties with losses in the manufacturing sector.

“But officials and other companies there are working much harder to get more manufacturing jobs into the county,” he said.

The lowest jobless rate in the state for February is Tompkins County at 4.9 percent. The highest is the Bronx at 12 percent.

The highest rates after the Bronx are Lewis County at 10.9 percent, Jefferson at 10.5 percent, Orleans at 10.2 percent and Hamilton and Oswego at 10 percent.

A report issued by the state Labor Department shows Oswego County lose about 500 jobs in manufacturing, financial activities and natural resources-construction in the 12 months ending in February 2014.

The county gained more than 1,000 jobs in that 12-month period in leisure and hospitality and about 500 jobs in trade, transportaion and utilities.

Some of the expanding or growing businesses mentioned in the labor report are Sunoco, Oswego REcycling, Fulton Cos., K&N Foods, Champlain Valley Specialty, Novelis, Teti Bakery, F.W. Webb Co. and Little Luke’s Day Care.

The unemployment rate in Oswego County was at its lowest point in April through December 2013. It went up to 9.7 percent in January 2014 and now again to 10 percent in February 2014.

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