Germanow joins Nelson Law Firm

Lawyer Lesley C. Germanow has joined the Nelson Law Firm, it was announced by Allison J. Nelson, owner.

Germanow will be responsible for representing clients in the areas of municipal law, real estate, business and corporate law, estate, trusts and vehicle and traffic matters.

Germanow is admitted to practice law in New York and the Northern District of New York Federal Court.

“Lesley has experience and skills that are an excellent match for our longstanding clients, “ Nelson said.  “We are delighted to have her expertise here at Nelson Law.”

Germanow earned her law degree from Syracuse University’s College of Law after she received her bachelor’s degree from College of Charleston. She previously owned her own law office in Fulton where she conducted her practice in appeals, traffic law, family law, real estate, land use planning and zoning and wills and estates.

Germanow has previously worked as a legislative assistant and paralegal.

Nelson Law Firm has strong ties to the community and serves a variety of leadership roles within community organizations and through its volunteer efforts.

In addition, Nelson Law Firm is a certified woman owned business enterprise with more than 75 combined years of experience, practicing in the areas of municipal law, real estate, business and corporate law, estate, trusts and vehicle and traffic matters.

For further information, call Nelson at 312-0318 or


2 join Burritt Motors staff

Dustin Geers and Andrew Halsey joined Burritt Motors recently as sales representatives, it was announced by Chris Burritt, owner.

“Dustin and Andrew have skills and qualifications that are an excellent match for the positions,” Burritt said. “ We’re delighted to add them to our growing sales team.”

Halsey had worked as a technician for a year at Burritt Motors before pursuing opportunities as an internet sales consultant. Halsey earned his associate degree in occupational studies as an automotive service technician from SUNY Alfred. He resides in Oswego.

Geers previously worked at a Syracuse dealership and earned his associate degree in business from the University of Phoenix. Geers resides in Oswego.

Burritt Motors’ history dates back to 1955 in Hannibal when Chris’ grandfather, Elmer O. Burritt, purchased a Chevrolet franchise that he operated until 1963.  To expand in a larger market, Chirs’ father, Richard, purchased the assets of a Chevrolet dealership that had been located on Oswego’s East Third Street.  About a year later, he built the present dealership on Route 104.

Burritt Motors recently completed a seven-month, $2.2 million expansion and renovation of their entire dealership.  The expansion included a new and expanded show room, new customer lounge, new service area with seven more service bays, a vehicle photo gallery to take a virtual test drive on the web site, and new administrative offices.

The dealership celebrates its 58th anniversary this year and can be reached at 343-8948, or



Deadline Dec. 4 for United Way mini-grants

United Way of Greater Oswego County is offering a limited number of mini-grants to community organizations.

The organizations must reflect the United Way’s mission and its five funding  categories: emergency services; heal and special needs; supporting families and children; senior services; and youth development.

United Way Executive Director Melanie Trexler said the mini-grants are for nonprofitsts serving Oswego County.

“Organizations that wish to apply for a mini-grant must submit a brief narrative that includes a description of the project and proposed activities, its goals, who it will serve and how it will benefit those served.

“The project must also have clear, measurable goals and a defined beginning and end. Applicants are also encouraged to partner with other community organizations on the project,” said Trexler.

Nonprofits wishing to apply for a mini-grant may download an application from the United Way website at

For more information, call Trexler at 593-1900, or send an email to

All proposals must be submitted no later than Dec. 4.

Kimberly Russell and Andrew Matteson wed July 6

Kimberly Hyde Russell and Andrew Jason Stanley Matteson were married July 6, 2013 at the West Baptist Church in Oswego by the Rev. David Nethercott.

The ceremony was followed by a reception at Lombardo’s Bridie Manor, Oswego.

The pride was escorted down the aisle by her mother, Georgia Hyde Russell, of Cicero. The groom is the son of Linda Sue Matteson, of Hannibal and the late Francis Earl Matteson.

The maids of honor were Kaitlin Doby and Brooke Lazore, friends of the bride. The best man was Kevin Matteson, brother of the groom.

Bridesmaids were Katie Kendrick, childhood friend of the bride and Dr. Beki Matteson, sister of the groom. Junior bridesmaid was Hannah Gigliotti, friend of the groom. Flower girls were Sarah and Lydia Gigliotti, friends of the groom.

The groomsmen were Doug Morgan and Rob Piascik, friends of the groom. Junior groomsman was Devante Ray, friend of the bride. Ring bearer was Kyle Doby McNally, friend of the bride.

Readings wee done by William Cross and John Manion, friends of the couple.

Kimberly is a graduate of Christian Brothers Academy and SUNY Oswego. She is employed by the North Syracuse and Hannibal school districts as a substitute teacher and she also is employed at Wegmans’ Cicero store.

Andy is a graduate of Hannibal High School and SUNY Oswego. He is employed as a teacher at Fairley Elementary School in the Hannibal school district.

In And Around Hannibal, by Rita Hooper

In 1920, seven acres were purchased on Cayuga Street for use as a school athletic field.

Financing for this acquisition was quite unique. All the money was raised and donated by the students, alumni, residents and teachers of the school system.

Subscribers of the fund actually held the deed to the property and granted the school exclusive use of it for athletic purposes. Not one dime came from the levy of school taxes.

At 3:15 in the afternoon of Friday, Feb. 23, 1923, smoke was discovered pouring out the second floor windows of the school building by the janitor, Frank Little.  (Remember from last week…this building was on the site of the present day Dollar General, built in 1868.)

Fortunately, the students had left the building just minutes before the blaze was noticed. Responding to the alarm, the firemen hastily arrived on the scene with their chemical apparatus, directed by Chief R.A. Bradt.

(R.A. Bradt was the first fire chief of the Hannibal Volunteer Fire Company, Inc. and was one of the charter members in 1910.)

Unfortunately, their chemical equipment failed to operate, necessitating the formation of a bucket brigade bringing water from the Methodist parsonage next door.

This proved inadequate to check the flames and within two hours the structure was reduced to smoldering ruins. However, the firemen and villagers were able to save a quantity of furnishings and books, plus the school piano.

In addition, the firemen were able to save the vocational training building to the rear of the school and other nearby dwellings. This was due in large part to the fact that all the roofs had a heavy covering of snow and there was no strong wind.

The cause of the fire was attributed to the buildup of soot in the chimney as a result of burning soft coal in the furnace.  Once the accumulated soot ignited, the hot chimney then in turn set fire to the adjoining woodwork.

The Board of Education met the following morning to assess the damage and to make arrangements to use the local churches and halls for instruction until a new school could be built.

The first three grades finished that school year and the next in the session room of the M.E. (Methodist Episcopal – the present day United Methodist Church, same church and congregation just a name change) Church.

Grades four through six were in the session room of the Presbyterian Church  until the fall of 1924. (The Presbyterian Church later federated with the Baptists and currently known as God’s Vision Christian Church.)

High school classes were held in McFarland and Chillson Halls. The homemaking and agricultural classes continued in the vocational training building.

The first action taken for the construction of a new school occurred March 20, 1923, when the decision to acquire a new site was approved at a district school meeting.

The considered location was the athletic field owned by the citizen’s group.  This property was just up the street from the burned out school, separated by two residences.

It made good sense to have the scholastic and athletic activities all in one place.

Plans for a new 18-room school building, including a gymnasium/auditorium, were created by architects Hallenbeck and Van Auken. On Oct. 26, 1923, the corner stone for the new school was laid during a special ceremony which included an address by David P. Morehouse, Sr.

Construction continued into the following year and was finished in time for the beginning of school in September of 1924.  There were 18 in the first graduating class in 1924; Helen Cooper was valedictorian and Harold Horton was salutatorian.

At a special meeting held Jan. 26, 1942, authorization was given to purchase additional land for school purposes from Grant Wilson. Today, what used to be District No. 4, is now the center of the sprawling Hannibal Central School system.

OK, fellow historians of Hannibal, where and what were Chillson and McFarland Halls?

Likewise who were Hallenbeck and VanAuken…yes I know they were architects but where were they located?  Who was David P. Morehouse, Sr.?  A local big wig or someone from Albany? Syracuse?

What happened to Helen Cooper and Harold Horton after graduation? Any other information you can offer about this story would be welcome, so drop me a note…All of Hannibal wants to know!


This week we learned of another weather related tragedy, this time in the Philippines when Typhoon Haiyan brought horrific winds and rain and storm surges topping 20 feet.

At this time the government has estimated 10,000 people may be dead. Many people are missing, many are homeless and hungry and looking for family.

Relief agencies from the United Nations to the Red Cross, to Catholic Charities and Church World Service have kicked in and are already on the scene trying to bring order out of chaos. Money and prayers are urgently needed. I have already heard from CWS and they have tapped into global networks to help provide emergency food, shelter, water and other relief to those most in need.  As the storm moves north, CWS staff in Vietnam stand prepared to help.


Hannibal Senior Dining Center meets at noon for dinner at the Senior Center (Library Building) on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Come early for coffee and news or to work on a jigsaw puzzle or  play games or just some idle chit-chat!  Give Rosemary a call and make your reservation, 564-5471.  This week’s menu is:

Monday: Beef stroganoff over noodles, green and yellow beans, orange juice, cookie

Wednesday: Thanksgiving luncheon of turkey with stuffing, mashed potatoes with gravy, 5-way blend vegetables, juice, pumpkin pie

Friday: Crispy fish clipper, au gratin potatoes, vegetable blend, juice, peaches

Activities: Monday, Wii bowling;  Wednesday, bingo after lunch; Friday,  shuffleboard and other games

Elderberries will not meet Nov. 26 – Have a wonderful, thankful Thanksgiving.

The Christmas gathering will be at noon Dec. 10 at the American Legion. Catered by Brenda Fletcher. Call George Darling and make your reservation today.

The annual Thanksgiving raffle basket is at the library full of great stuff for your holiday. It has a gift card from the Village Market, gift certificate from Travis Floral, turkey platter, tablecloths and more. Drawing is Nov. 24.

Plans are underway for the celebration of the 10th Annual Country Christmas in the town of Hannibal Nov. 23 and 24.  This event kicks off the holiday season and showcases local merchants’ seasonal offerings.

The Friends of the Library will hold their annual Christmas Tree Festival.  Visitors to the Community Center, 162 Oswego St., can bid on decorated trees and wreaths from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 23 and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 24.

The theme for this year’s Festival is “The Polar Express.” Contact Linda Remig at 564-6643 for information or pick up an entry form at the library.

If you have ordered this year’s Christmas ornament from the Historical Society, you may pick it up Nov. 23 and 24.

The Hannibal United Methodist Church, 320 Church St., is sponsoring a craft show from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 23. A soup, sandwich and homemade pie lunch will be served 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Lunch takeouts are available.

God’s Vision Christian Church, 326 Church St., will have an open house and tour at the church from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 23. There will be refreshments.

At 4 p.m. Nov. 24, the Hannibal Historical Society is hosting The Village Christmas Tree Lighting Festival at the Village Square, with the arrival of Santa Claus.

At 4:15 p.m., students from Kami’s Kix Dance Studio will perform. Community organizations involving students have been invited to set up tables where children can make crafts or families can make purchases.

At 4:45 p.m., the Port Byron Brass will begin playing songs of the season. Door prize drawings will take place, followed by the children’s parade and the lighting of the Christmas Tree in the Village Square. Each child who attends this event will receive a gift from Santa, and be given an ornament to hang on the Village Christmas Tree.

There will be a community Thanksgiving Service following the tree lighting – at about 6 p.m. at the Hannibal Methodist Church, 1 block west of the village square on Church Street.

The Rev.  Dean Flemming will bring the message and refreshments will be served.  You are asked to bring groceries for the Hannibal Resource Center…they are anticipating  they will need food for 2,500 meals over the Thanksgiving weekend.

Shirts ‘N Skirts, Square Dance Club, meets from 7 to 9:30 p.m. every Friday evening at the Fulton Municipal Building, South First Street, Fulton.

All ages are welcome, under 16 years old must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 591-0093 or email

The Hannibal Town Board meets the third Wednesday of the month, Nov. 20.

Remember this column is about and for the people of Hannibal and the surrounding area. If you have an event that you would like the public to know about, send me an e-mail or give me a quick call.

Rita Hooper 706-3564

Phoenix dealership partner in line for association chair

William C. Fox, a partner in Fox Dealerships Inc. in Phoenix and Auburn, has been named vice chairman of the board of directors of the National Automobile Dealers Association.

The position puts him in line for chairman in 2015.

“I am honored to be elected by my peers as NADA vice chairman,” said Fox, who currently represents New York’s franchised new-car dealers on NADA’s board. “I am committed to ensuring NADA’s position as the voice of the dealer, and helping to shape the future of auto retailing for dealers across the country.”

Fox dealerships sell Chevrolet, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram, Honda, Subaru and Toyota brand vehicles.

He is chair of the NADA’s Regulatory Affairs Committee and served as finance chairman of the Dealers Election Action Committee. Fox was chairman of NADA’s Public Affairs Committee and Policy and By-Laws committee.

He has also served on the association’s Government Relations, Industry Relations and Dealer Operations committees. He serves as a member of Subaru’s National Dealer Advisory Board and has served on several manufacturer dealer councils and advertising associations.

Fox serves as vice chairman for the New York State Automobile Dealers Association.

For the past 14 years, he served as a director for the NYSADA and charred several committees. He served as NYSADA secretary and treasurer, and has been a member of its executive committee for the past five years.

His community service activities include awarding scholarship to local students who attend Georgetown University, Cayuga Community College and BOCES. He supports Nazareth College, LeMoyne College, Auburn Memorial Hospital, Tyburn Academy, Merry-Go-Round Theater, Auburn Public Theater, Matthew House, the Cayuga Foundation, YMCA, Auburn Doubledays, the SPCA and local youth athletic leagues.

He recently funded the creation of two new athletic fields for the Auburn City School District, as well as many other improvements to their athletic complex.

Fox has a bachelor’s degree in finance from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., and a law degree from St. John’s University in New York City. He’s admitted to practice in all New York state courts, including the Federal District Court for the Northern District of New York and the U.S. Supreme Court.

He was a practicing attorney at Melvin and Melvin in Syracuse for 12 years, and has consulted for the law firm during the past 33 years.

Stone Soup luncheon raises money for food pantries

The annual Stone Soup luncheon, on Nov. 12, benefitted the UnitedWay Oswego’s fundraising efforts in support of local food pantries: Human Concerns Center, The Salvation Army Oswego NY and Catholic Charities of Oswego County.

Canale’s Restaurant, Lombardo’s Bridie Manor, Vona’s, Oswego County Club and GS Steamers Bar and Grill each provided hot soups. C’s Farm Market and Davis Brothers provided tossed salad and dressing and Bosco and Geers donated fresh baked rolls and butter. Coffee was from Dunkin’ Donuts and water was from Paul’s Big M. 

Your hometown. Your news.