Monday, August 31, 2009

Self Stories

The Arc Otsego’s Main View Gallery will open its Fall exhibit with a reception on September 11 from 5-7 pm. I hope we'll get a sneak preview at the OWL meeting tomorrow night! So fun to meet in such a wonderfully creative space.

The exhibit will run September 11-December 1, 2009 at the Main View Gallery & Studio, 73 Main St. Oneonta, NY. Featuring work by artists at The Arc Otsego’s Center for Self Expression, Self Stories explores the concept of personal image through self-portraits and a series of large paintings that chronicle each artist’s journey through life. Visit or call 607-432-1890 for more info.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Art In August (last chance)

The Fenimore Art Musuem's last Art in August program is this Saturday from 3-4pm. Cost is $5 (free for members). This program is for children ages 4-8.

Last minute weekend post

I stayed up last night and watched The Producers and forgot all about the weekend blog post until the morning. Here goes:

Tonight, 7-8:30 pm Raptor Program, Lake View Room, Glimmerglass State Park, followed by free movie, info 547-8662

Orpheus Theatre's Starstruck Theatre Troupe will perform at Old Franklin Days in Franklin - Saturday the 29th at 11am, presenting a 1/2 hour performance from Seussical Jr.

Also Sat, 10 am Rexford Falls Gorge outing, Rogers Environmental Education Center, state Route 80, Sherberne. Info: 674-4017, ext. 623.

Sat Aug. 29 from 9:00 until 12:00 the Worcester Free Library is having a Summer Market (Sale of vegetables, canned items and baked goods). With performance by Skip West at 1pm.

Saturday the Roxbury Arts Group presents a night of African music

Summer Sunday: Old Trolleys of Oneonta at the Swart-Wilcox House, Wilcox Avenue off River Street; house open, 1 to 3 p.m.; program, 1:30. For info: 432-0665 or 432-8417.

There aren't many Tigers games left in the season!

It's also a great idea to get out to Hanford Mills and to the Farmer's Museum before the end of summer. Fun for the whole family.

Looking ahead:

Oneonta World of Learning (OWL)--that's us!!!--is meeting on 1 Aug 2009 (the first Tues of the month) at 7pm, Main View gallery, Oneonta NY. Open to the public as always! Info: call Andrea 433-0160.

Alpacas are running toward this year's Harvest Festival at the Farmer's Museum, September 12 & 13 in Cooperstown. Pic:

Coming up in Roxbury: fireworks and community-wide party Saturday Sept. 5

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Mercury study released

Fishing is a great way to get kids outside and exploring, but think before you fry up that fish you just caught. A government study has recently confirmed that mercury contamination is widespread. From the article:
"The main source of mercury to most of the streams tested ... is emissions from coal-fired power plants."

"All but two states — Alaska and Wyoming — have issued fish-consumption advisories because of mercury contamination."
NY State has issued warnings about fish caught in Adirondack and Catskill streams (scroll down for advice on which fish to avoid altogether and which to eat in moderation): water body specific warnings.

Women, infants and children shouldn't eat ANY fish caught in certain waters: Off limits. Why women and children in particular?
"...chemicals may have a greater effect on developing organs in young children or in the unborn child. They also build up in women's bodies and are often passed on in mother's milk." --NY DEC
Wondering just how mercury contamination happens? Check out the mercury cycle.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Ahhh, the weekend

The Delaware County Fair runs through Sat August 22

Aug 21-23, Fri-Sun: Water Festival

Sounds really cool: Friday, August 21st, 1 pm: ARM OF THE SEA presents, "Henry Hudson and the River that Discovered Him," recreating Hudson's voyage through mask and puppet theater. Fun for the whole family! FREE. Vega Mt. Rd., Roxbury.

The Oneonta Tigers are back home Friday only

Sat Aug 22 10am-3pm Greater Oneonta Historical Society local history scavenger hunt for children and adults. Pick up forms at History Center, 183 Main St. Oneonta. Prizes awarded.

Sat 8pm Star-gazing event, Lake View Room, Glimmerglass State Park, Cooperstown, with The Mohawk Valley Astronomical Society. For info: 547-8662.

Sat 9am OCCA nature walk: Bear Swamp. Meet at Country Kitchen, state routes 165 and 166, Roseboom. For info: 547-4488.

Sat 2-4pm Schoharie Land Trust outing: Conservation Treasure Hunt, SkyHill Homestead, 184 Bush St., Seward. For info: (518) 234-1942.

First Round of Auditions for both PAL JOEY and THE PRODUCERS, with Orpheus Theatre is Sat. Info

Sat 2pm 'Murder mystery' rail ride, Cooperstown & Charlotte Valley Railroad, state Route 166, East Main Street, Milford. For info, reservations: 432-2429.

Stallions Footbal Sat 5pm, Fortin Park (vs NJ Wolves)

Looking ahead:

Mon 24 Aug, 7pm FREE Foothills Live Music: The United States Air Force Bay State Winds in concert, 24 Market St. Oneonta, info:

10am Tues Aug 25, Summertime Arts, Education and Just Plain Fun program: Silent Tales, Franklin Free Library, 334 Main St., Franklin.

Wed 26 Aug 2:30-4:30pm Car-seat fitting station Delaware Opportunities, state Route 10, Walton. For info, appointment: 746-1700.


August 17 - 21. 9:30 - 3 NATURE AND ART FOR KIDS five day program (kayaking, crafts, puppets, naturalists) Info:

Glen Brook Farm Summer Workshops: Check out the schedule at

"Club 24" Children's Summer Workshops (next week 'children's comics') For info: 431-2080

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Gardening with my kids

My husband and I had meant to just plant some mums in our back yard flower box. After all, you can't really go wrong with mums. But my oldest insisted on bringing home three lettuce plants, too. So I bought two basil plants, since they looked very healthy. Now, in amongst the mums, we have some nice lettuces and some basil growing. (The bean plant that he brought home from preschool in a little cup was long ago eaten by something, probably a hedge hog, whom I believe to have taken up a residence under our deck.)

My preschooler was so excited to pick lettuce tonight for a tossed salad, that he pulled up half of one of the plants! Meanwhile, his little brother thought it would be a good idea to help out the hedge hogs by digging a hole for them in the flower box. After the excitement of picking lettuce we headed over to the straggly looking tomato plants along the fence (the one vegetable I plant every year) and were able to get just a few tomatoes. (I'm not much of a gardener, but this time I think it was the tomato blight that has hit Upstate New York).

Anyway, at dinner my preschooler dished up a huge salad for himself, covered it in ranch dressing and ate it all! That made it all worth it.Enjoying the simple things. I guess that's what gardening is about.

I found the Kids Gardening website interesting: Through The National Gardening Association, they promote gardening as an aspect of education and provide grants for youth and community gardens.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The weekend is here

Thurs thru Sat from now until Sept 6th: American Fairy Tales at the Franklin Stage is a performance recommended for adults and children over 8 years old

Leatherstocking Sheepdog Trials run Friday through Sunday in Cooperstown on Beaver Meadow Road. For info: 293-8385.

The Chenango County Fair in Norwich continues through Sunday

Sat and Sun 1-4pm 1-4pm Sat Bullthistle Model Railroad Society Inc. Museum, 33 Rexford St. Norwich; or by appointment. For info: 334-4522 or 336-5951.

Sat Aug 15th:

Sat 9am-3pm Fifth annual West End Garage Sales on Oneonta's West End, For info: 432-4926.

"Club 24" Children's Summer Workshops this month, Tuesdays-Fridays Ages 4-7, at the Foothills Performing Arts Center. For info: 431-2080

Sat 8:30am-noon Paddle Beaver Creek in Sherburne at the Rogers Environmental Education Center, state Route 80; $5 per paddler. For info, registration: 674-4017.

1pm Sat 'Train robbery' rail ride with the Cooeprstown & Charlotte Valley Railroad depot, state Route 166. For info: 432-2429.

Sun Aug 16:

Sun from noon to 5pm is the Inaugural Cooperstown Railroad Festival on Railroad Avenue in Cooperstown; featuring live music, food, local vendors, rail tours and more. For info: 432-2429.

1:30pm Sun Summer Sundays: 'Old Oneonta Schools' at the Swart-Wilcox House, Wilcox Avenue off River Street, Oneonta; house open from 1 to 3 p.m. For info: 432-0665.

1-4pm Sun Beekeeping program at the Old Middlefield Schoolhouse, county Highway 35; presented by Middlefield Historical Association. Free, open to the public.

Sun 3-3:30pm Explore the Catskill Wild Side Plant Walk at the Harmony Hill Retreat Center, East Meredith. Free, open to the public; for info, RSVP: 278-6609.

4pm Sun Potluck community picnic in East Meredith at the West Kortright Centre; free, open to the public. For info: 278-5454.

Looking Ahead:

Tues Aug 18th Weekly outing of the Susquehanna Chapter, Adirondack Mountain Club. Walk, hike, bike or canoe; hours subject to change. For info: 286-9126.

Tues 10am Summertime Arts, Education and Just Plain Fun: Irish Music Delights, Franklin Free Library, 334 Main St. Franklin.

Tues 10am-2:30pm Glen Brook Farm Summer Workshop: Pond and Waterways, for ages 7 & up. A conservation leader will guide students beginning in a canoe observing, insects, amphibians and plant life. 142 Glen Drive, Oneonta For info: 433-0932

Interesting blog: Hop picking at The Farmer's Museum

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Thursday nite events

Tomorrow brings the last of the summer music series in Neahwa Park. As always, bring a lawn chair and blanket. Show time is at 7pm at the stage shell or under the large pavilion when it rains. Blues Maneuver will be playing.

Alternatively, the Morris Farmer's Market is hosting a harvest festival tomorrow night! Should be a lot of fun. There will be some very talented young musicians playing.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The debate in Neahwa Park

The current debate raging around planned changes to Neahwa Park really demonstrates the role a great park plays in the life of a community. You will find that people who grew up in Oneonta but have long since moved away are still passionate about 'their park.'

I thought I would post part of an email I received tonight from a friend who met with the mayor and other concerned citizens tonight to discuss the issue:
"I spent an hour and a half of my evening in Neahwa Park listening to the great debate of 'trees verses Veterans'. For those of you that were not aware that such a debate was afoot in the city of the hills let me fill you in. The Veteran's Memorial Walk is planned to transform War Memorial Drive from a vehicular roadway into a Memorial Walkway. The new pedestrian promenade will give prominence to the host of historical markers and memorials that surround Hodges Pond. The project will include improvements to existing memorials, the planting of trees, construction of a gazebo, expansion of parking areas, and new paved and brick walkways along the south side of the pond. In the process of this planned transformation about twenty or so trees would meet their demise. This has angered a lot of citizens, who spoke out tonight, which in turn angered many of the assembled Veterans, who felt the opponents did not see the great sacrifice that Veterans have made. And so the banter continued back and forth, with one very memorable elderly woman asking the Mayor 'what’s wrong with the way it is now?' One thing is for sure, it was a discussion from many different points of view."

"As I listened to both sides, it occurred to me that I was not viewing this from either side (tree friend or veteran). Although I am a twenty-year veteran of the US Navy, I was looking at the fiscal responsibility of the city government. Don't we have existing infrastructure or facilities in the park that nearly four hundred thousand dollars might be better spent on?"
Think about the happiest memories of your childhood. Do they center around a specific place? If you had to choose, which places would you preserve for the next generation and would you change them in any way? Importantly, do you feel there are enough such spaces today?

Sunday, August 9, 2009

#49 Model Effective Conflict Resolution

Conflict among children is unavoidable. Adults can't always avoid conflict, for that matter. So it makes sense to arm your children with ways to help resolve conflict when it occurs.

Tip #49 from "Raising Confident Boys, 100 Tips for Parents and Teachers" by Elizabeth Hartley-Brewer, suggests that adults should 'model effective conflict resolution.' One idea is to demonstrate good communication skills, by using only "I" statements when presenting your case and avoiding "You" statements, which can be accusative. Another is to accept that "You don't need to win every battle."

I like this book because in two pages I've covered a complete section, so I can catch up on my parenting skills without spending a lot of time!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Two more things--

Hanford Mills is offering 2 hands-on workshops this weekend (hand dovetailing & digital photography). Their Riddle Me This exhibit opens Sunday. Details

The Fenimore Art Museum: Kids under 12 free on Saturday, August 8 for A Taste of the Sublime. There will be family activiites on the lawn.

The weekend! Thank goodness!

The Otsego County Fair in Morris NY runs through this Sun. The kangaroo at the zoo has a baby joey in her pouch! Sun 12-5pm is one price rides. Visit for details.

The Schoharie County Sunshine Fair in Cobleskill runs through Sat. Visit

Fri and Sat: Relay For Life Of Oneonta at Fortin Park; survivor lap Fri 6 p.m., followed by dinner and reception; Fight Back ceremony, 8 p.m.; luminaria ceremony, 10 p.m. Fun for the whole family on Sat. Email for details.

Fri 7 Aug, 8:30pm Friday Fun Night outdoor movie in Cooperstown at the Glimmerglass State Park; featuring safety presentation by Safe Kids of Otsego County at 8 p.m. Info: 547-8662

7:05pm Fri Tigers vs. Staten Island. Free books, live band before the game, and Scout Night: troops register for package deals to the game.

Sat 8 Aug 10am-2pm is Kids' Day at the Oneonta Farmers' Market, Muller Plaza, Main Street; with live music, stories and performances. For info: 437-0158.

Sat: Open Water Swim at Gilbert Lake. Call 432-0010 for details.

Sat 10am is Explore the Summit Trail at Rogers Environmental Education Center, state Route 80, Sherburne. For info: 674-4017.

Sat 2pm-3:30pm Search for the Arthropod Squad at Landis Arboretum, Lape Road, Esperance. For info: (518) 875-6935.

7:05pm Sat Tigers vs. Staten Island. Fans who donate clothing receive old Oneonta Yankees memorabilia.

Flat Creek, Schenevus, and Maryland NY are all having 'lawn sale' days Sat.

Sun 9 Aug the Swart-Wilcox Summer Sundays: 'Goin' to Pot' at the Swart Wilcox House, Wilcox Avenue, Oneonta; visit 1 - 3 p.m.; program at 1:30 p.m. with potter Ellie Stromberg. Free. For info: 432-0665 or 432-8417.

6pm Sun Tigers vs. Staten Island. Bring your dog to the game.

Looking ahead:

Glen Brook Farm is offering Art Farm workshops with Cynthia Marsh next week. Call 432-0932 for details.

Tues 11 Aug at 10am the Summertime Arts, Education and Just Plain Fun program continues with Strings the Thing at the Franklin Free Library, 334 Main St.

Wed 12 Aug 10am La Leche League breast-feeding information group meets in Oneonta at the First United Methodist Church, corner of Chestnut and Church streets. Call Kate at 432-5984 for info.

Wed 6:30pm Magic by Michael at the Sidney Memorial Public Library, 8 River St, Sidney. For info: 563-1200.

Nature and Art Kids program with The Roxbury Arts Group August 17 - 21st, from 9:30 am - 3 pm. 5 day program for children ages 8 to 12 includes a kayaking trip, water relay, crafts, puppet show. Info:

Concert in the Park

There was a great crowd at the concert tonight. Just Throw Money performed. Next week, Blues Maneuver will close out the summer series in Neahwa Park.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Kid-centered intro to chamber music

The Daedalus Quartet offers a kid-centered intro to chamber music. As resident ensemble of the Lincoln Center Institute, the Daedalus Quartet has performed for thousands of school children.

Family Music Fest with the Daedalus Quartet is scheduled for Monday, August 10th at 11 am at Templeton Hall, 63 Pioneer Street, Cooperstown. Hands-on crafts and fun begin at 10:30 am. An instrument petting zoo follows the performance. Tickets are $5 per person or $15 per family. Contact 877-666-7421, visit, or purchase tickets at the door.This performance is brought to you courtesy of John Keal Music Co. and is part of the Cooperstown Chamber Music Festival.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Book recommendation

A MySpace friend just recommended the book, I can be: A Child's Whimsical Introduction to Yoga, by Christine Summer and Kirk Salopek. She writes:
"My son is 2.5 ish and I thought, well, he probably won't be interested [in yoga]. But he picks up the book to read/do frequently. He does the tree, the cat, not exactly but in the ball park :) So here is one testimony that preschooler's dig yoga. He also likes looking at the pictures of the animals in the book--so I would recommend a bright, colorful yoga book."
I love her signature line: "Love and Light."

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Great weather for City of the Hills

From Aaron, who set up the OWL booth at the City of the Hills festival this weekend:

"Today went well!! I would estimate that we had about 50 children visit the booth. Thanks to Heather and Marjorie for your help and a special thanks to Ariann who really made sure everything went smoothly."

Our monthly planning meeting is this Tuesday! The executive board is meeting at 6:30pm followed by a general meeting at 7pm, which is open to everyone.