Page 1

The

July 3, 2013

Countryy Editor

Volume 1 Number 12

Just good reading

Happy Independence Day!

Honey bees and air conditioning ~ Page 3

4th of July The holiday by the numbers by Al Dorantes As America gets set to celebrate its 237th birthday we’ll do it in true American fashion. We’ll light millions of pounds of fireworks over the holiday weekend, 75,000 lbs at the Macy’s celebration alone. Twenty-six percent of the country will set off their own fireworks. Five states, New York along with Delaware, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Rhode Island ban consumer fireworks. Over on Coney Island, Nathan’s Famous hot dog eating contest will take place. Twenty contestants will gather outside Nathan’s Famous original hot dog stand to see who could eat the most hot dogs (and buns) in 10 minutes. Record holder, Joey Chestnut ate 68 in 2012. Regular noncompetitive eaters, regular citizens like me and you, will consume over 150 million hot dogs on the fourth of July. When you get down to the real numbers of the holiday is where it gets confusing. July 4, 1776 is the date credited with the birth of our nation. The war started on April 19, 1775. How come we don’t celebrate that, the first shot? The Revolutionary War didn’t end until September, 3, 1783. Shouldn’t we celebrate then? Historians will argue that we’re celebrating our Declaration of Independence. Ok. I’ll give you that.

But, the Continental Congress voted for independence on July 2, 1776. Let’s back the holiday up by two days. Oh, we can’t do that. Because the Declaration of Independence was ratified on July 4, 1776. So, in reality, we celebrate the date of ratification, the approval essentially, of the Declaration of Independence. But, the formal signing by the “colonies” started on August 2, 1776. Are you confused yet? George Washington wasn’t. On July 4, 1778 he dou-

Mailboat captain recruits summertime mail-jumpers ~ Page 11 bled the rum rations for his soldiers in celebration. John Adams (our 2nd president) argued that, “The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America.” He died, many years later (1826) on July, 4. Interestingly enough, so did Thomas Jefferson, the man credited with writing the Declaration of Independence. Calvin Coolidge, 30th President of the United States was born on July 4, 1872. James Monroe (5th President) died on July 4, 1831. None of our presidents have died on July 2nd. In 1941 Congress declared that Independence Day, July 4, was a federal, legal holiday. They’re a couple years behind Bristol, RI. They’ve been celebrating July 4 as a holiday since 1785. The numbers don’t lie; Americans love celebrating Independence Day. Eighty percent of the country will attend a picnic or BBQ. We’ll spend over $90 million on chips and almost another $200 million on burgers. Don’t forget the ketchup; condiments will cost $200 million too. At the end of the weekend we, the people, will spend almost $2 billion dollars on cookouts. In the end, the number we should try to remember, is 13. It was 13 colonies that were brave enough to stand up and believe in the words behind the Declaration of Independence, “... We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. . .” God bless America!

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Charles’ Angels by Laura Rodley Clara Thatcher, age 14, and her sister Kayla Thatcher, age 19, residents of Worthington, MA raised $3,172 towards diabetes education as a result of a walkathon held at Hampshire Regional High School in Westhampton on June 1. The monies will be given to Cooley Dickinson Hospitals’ Center for Excellence in Diabetes Education (CEDE) in Northampton. The walk, spearheaded by Clara, was held in memory of their father, Charles Thatcher, who died of complications due to diabetes in 2009 at age 38. According to the American Diabetes Foundation, “Diabetes kills more Americans than breast cancer and AIDS combined.” The final amount raised is twice their goal of $1,500. Over 70 people attended the walk. Both sisters have previously walked to raise money for dia-

betes education, the first two times for the American Diabetes Association, a national organization dedicated to research and education about diabetes and how to manage it. Since her first walk, Clara has grown one foot taller, and was awaiting her 9th grade finals. Her sister Kayla was home on break as a freshman at Murray State University in Murray Kentucky for the walk. Clara chose to spearhead this walk with help from her teacher and family to keep the money local, with no overhead or administrative costs. She has dedicated her time to diabetes education and received a John F. Kennedy Make A Difference Award last year in Boston for announcing informational tips about diabetes, which include maintaining a healthy diet and reducing sugar intake for diabetes prevention, over the loudspeaker at her school. Getting the walk organized took a lot of

work, said Clara, crediting two teachers, Scott Green and Leslie Giordana, for their assistance. A month after the walk, Clara is still thrilled at its success. “It

is absolutely amazing. My mom kept it a secret from me during the walk how much we raised. When I found out, I was

Angels page 3

Kayla and Clara Thatcher (L-R) raised over 3,000 for the Center for Excellence in Diabetes Education. Photo by Laura Rodley


Page 2 July 3, 2013 • THE COUNTRY EDITOR •

Neighborhoods come together by Al Dorantes I have a lot if stuff in my basement. Had. Besides the normal

appliances, hot water heater, furnace, air conditioning unit, dehumidifier and washer and drier

I kept other things down there. Tools and Christmas decorations. Weights and a treadmill.

People helped others stranded in their homes get to drier places.

As the water started to recede, Alexander Dorantes V found a way to get around while staying dry.

This car was parked in an unfortunate place.

There was an old desk somebody had painted a gaudy shade of green that I was going to refinish some day. Let’s be honest. It’s a lot of junk. I was ill prepared when the flood of 2013 hit. I’ve lived in my current home for over a dozen years and haven’t even had so much as puddle in the cellar. When my phone rang at about 5:20 in the morning I was shocked to hear that my mother’s basement was flooding. I was more shocked when she told me to look outside. There was over 4 feet of muddy, brown water sitting in my backyard. I had always wanted waterfront property. My problem was compounded by the simple fact that I didn’t have a pump. No sump pump, no water pump, not even a bicycle pump. My neighbor brought over the first pump for me to borrow at about 10 o’clock. We submerged it, plugged it in, and watched as water flowed out the 5/8th inch hose. There was a sense of relief but, we soon realized that the water was coming in faster than the pump could remove it. Luckily, my neighbor, Steve Brockett, from down the street had heard that Lowe’s was expecting a shipment of pumps. He was on a list. Over 30 employees were called in from as far away as Baldwinsville to staff the Herkimer store. The pleasant girl who cashed me out said she had brought 40 sump pumps in her compact car. I bought a pump and some hose and went home to bail. Even with my extra pump, imported from Baldwinsville, the water was overtaking us. I called for reinforcements. My brother arrived around dinner time with a 5 horse power, 2 inch pump. Water shot out of my basement like a geyser. Two neighbors, Craig and Carrie came over and helped us with all manner of tasks from manning the hose to moving debris. Eventually, what I found in my basement

Work crews were helping remove debris from roads to make them passable. Photos by Al Dorantes

Helping a neighbor, or even a complete stranger, can help to restore the fabric of normalcy that’s been ripped asunder by storms or fires or other disaster. and in the remnants of the flood waters out on the streets was community. People helping people. It’s a beautiful thing. Neighbors helping neighbors. It’s pretty awesome. Teams of firefighters arrived Thursday and Friday morning. I asked Steve Napalitano, from the Herkimer Fire Department, how many crews came to assist Herkimer. “Too many to even count,” he said. These first responders, many from towns and communities I had never even heard of, along with police, water depart-

ments and DPW crews were helping people with flooded basements and structural damage. A lot of times these guys are on the scene helping strangers while their own homes and families wait. It’s this instant sense if community that’s amazing. It restores hope, even if momentarily. When you help a neighbor, or even a complete stranger, you’re restoring the fabric of normalcy that’s been ripped asunder by storms or fires or other disaster. The water will recede. We’ll all be stronger for it.


This recent aerial shot of the dam with water going under the gate house shows white water in the power canal. The Turners Falls-Gill Bridge passes overhead of the dam and canal.

Angels from page 1 overwhelmed.” Money raised during the walk with on-site raffle monies totaled $2,697. Since then, $475 has been donated for the resulting $3,172. What benefits will the CEDE have from the money? “I think they can do a lot with it. They’re just starting a cooking class. I just talked to Kelly. (Kelly Henry, CEDE organizer and teacher). She told me they couldn’t afford the food; even though they got a grant, there wasn’t enough money for the cooking class. (Now) they can use the money to buy food for the cooking class, helping the program run better.” Donations are still coming in. “We are wrapping it up so we can deliver it to the program,” said their mother, Mandy Caputo, Worthington resident, who walked with her daughters on June 1, as well as their grandmother, Betty Smith from Chesterfield, MA. Donations can still be made, sent directly to the sisters, payable to CDHCC c/o Charles’ Angels Walk P.O. Box 165 Worthington MA 01098, or through their website, www.charlesangels.weebly.com

crops. In a Special Dispatch to the Globe, an unnamed writer says, “The Turners Falls Company...is trying a very interesting experiment in cultivating the soil on what has been considered barren plain land at Turners Falls on the Connecticut River where its principle power stations are located...The sandy land had been considered worthless, especially as farm land.” The visionary Crocker saw the land’s potential and bought it up. The writer continues, “An experiment, using small amounts of water pumped from the Connecticut River to irrigate the worthless sandy soil proved to be successful, warranting a large scale planting of Havana tobacco said to be nearly equal to any grown in the fertile lands of the Connecticut Valley, several acres of onions, a large corn and miscellaneous crops of a varied nature consisting of many farming truck and fine flower garden including a row of sweet peas, several rods in length with thousands of blossoms. The corn is only irrigated in part. Another experiment is being tried; the cultivation of about five acres of sweet clover and this was not irrigated...The crop is doing well but not nearly as well as it would do if irrigated.” Sweet clover is an invasive plant brought to the U.S. in the 1600s. It is a bush-like plant that grows almost anywhere as much as five feet tall. It invades

• THE COUNTRY EDITOR • July 3, 2013

the mill, eventually buying several others, as well. He became president of the Boston & Fitchburg Rail Road, was active in politics as both a representative and a senator at state and federal levels. He not only founded the Turners Falls Company in 1868, and the village of Turners Falls, but also two banks in Turners Falls that bore his name. He also dug the power canal through ledge, bridged the canal in four places, and sold factory sites and home building lots. He even saw potential in “waste land” on the plains, in the area where the Turners Falls Airport is now. He successful enriched the sandy soil, irrigated it, and successfully grew profitable

Page 3

White Coal Experimental Farm by Joe Parzych The experimental White Coal Farm was owned by the Turners Falls Company. This corporation was founded by Alvah Crocker, who also founded Turners Falls, a village in the town of Montague, MA. Crocker used the term “White Coal” in reference to cheap water power produced by the power canal by the Turners Falls Dam. It may also have referred to the pumping of irrigation water using the flow of water through a penstock to power a water ram. Crocker saw opportunities at every turn. A shaker and a mover, he began working in a paper mill in Fitchburg as a young man, and soon bought

Fredick Perry, 26, managed the White Coal Farm on the Montague plains. Here, he is pictured with a farm worker in the farm fields with his son, Fred, on his knee. Photos courtesy of Joe Parzych and degrades native grasses by Falls Company pumped water overtopping and shading native 175 feet to irrigate the fields. A sun-loving plants, but it is still water ram or a paddle wheel used as a forage crop and soil using the Archimedes screw enhancer. Plowing under the method to pump water would crop as “green manure” gave probably have been the most the sandy soil of the Montague likely mechanism. The farm plains much needed organic used a “one lunger” gasoline material. The sand deposit on power unit to drive a pump. the plains came from the delta However, the term “White Coal” of Lake Hitchcock which cov- indicates that water power was ered the area and left the sand the major method of pumping deposit when the natural dam water — a lot of water. The Globe article states that, “It is broke. Nothing in the report estimate of experts that in an describes how the Turners White coal page 4

Honey bees and air conditioning by William and Mary Weaver Humans are not the only creatures who air condition. Honey bees air condition too. But with honey bees, air conditioning the hive is not simply a matter of comfort. It’s a very serious matter necessary for the survival of the hive. In very hot weather, particularly when the hive is in full sun, if you look closely at the landing board in front of the hive, you’ll see an interesting sight: a staggered row of bees, with their heads down and their stinger ends pointed toward the sky, moving their wings back and forth so rapidly that it almost looks as though the wings aren’t there. This behavior is called “fanning.” Strange sight. What’s going on? Air conditioning! The bees rapidly fanning their wings on the landing board are setting up air currents into the hive, as though each bee is a tiny electric fan. These air currents are kept in motion inside the hive by bees fanning in a similar manner, strategically spaced throughout the hive. At the same time, lots of bees are both landing and taking off from the front of the hive, like a busy airport in action. It looks like there must be a great nectar flow on.

But if it’s very hot, likely the bees aren’t collecting nectar, even if it’s available. Likely, they’re collecting water — from the nearest birdbath, or dog’s water bowl, or swimming pool, or — if the beekeeper is smart — from a bucket filled with water, with floats in it for the bees to land on. Why collect water? To aid in the air conditioning of the hive. The bees bring back droplets of water and spread them in strategic locations around the hive. This water then evaporates in the air currents set up by the rapidly beating wings of the fanning bees. The evaporation of the water takes the heat out of the hive. The faster the air currents from the fanning wings, the faster the water evaporates, and the more rapidly excess heat is removed. Why all this hard work and commotion to air condition the hive? The eggs laid by the queen bee, and the larvae and pupae that develop from them before hatching into adult bee form, can only survive in a very narrow range of temperatures — very close to 95 degrees. Much above that temperature, and these developing bees-to-be will die. The fanning and water gathering are instinctive behaviors imprinted in the bees’ tiny

The rapid fanning of honeybees’ wings creates air currents within the hive. Photo by Joan Kark-Wren

brains, brains only about the size of a grass seed, that can save the lives of the bees-to-be in hot weather, and therefore, in the long term, the life of the whole hive. (In summer, the lives of adult bees are quite short. The adults must continuously be replaced by newly hatched bees.) In cold weather, the bees become a furnace for the hive, to keep the developing bees at that 95 degree temperature even in the depths of winter.


Page 4 July 3, 2013 • THE COUNTRY EDITOR •

Country school days and pieces in the form of stones, minerals, books and examples of projects thought by the teachers too outstanding to throw away. At this point in my story, I must realize that many of my own recent acquaintances feel that I am not too gracefully entering my second childhood. Those who have known me from that long ago time probably know that I never escaped my first. It was quite common for the pupils to pick a shiny stone along their walk to school to show the teacher or one another. The list of those treasures might include an Indian arrow point or some other small relic from only yesterday or from many yesterdays ago. The scenario might be: “Ah! There is an unusually colorful flower or that different shaped leaf. I’ll just take that along to school and see if teachers can tell me what it is.” The students are all like family and all can add something to our store of knowledge. The day and age of one room schools in education was simple. Quite possibly unreal to today’s students and their parents also. The taxes to finance a one room school district would be shocking to today’s taxpayers. Shocking, that is, by how small they were. The students all knew one another and The also their parents and grandparents. Among my mementos is a book Justt goodd reading Published weekly on Wednesday by Lee Publications of minutes from the school meet6113 St. Hwy. 5, Palatine Bridge, NY 13428 ings where my father was — from Publisher, President time to time — a trustee, treasurer

by Skip “Willis” Barshied I take up my pen this early morning with the full realization that I’m falling into an all too common trap. The trap is starting a new story before I have finished the last. In recent days Fort Klock members have been occupied with the erection of a new flag pole at the old Fort Klock one room school. The fourth of July, when we will dedicate it, is fast approaching. Doubtless each of those who are involved with the project conjures up very different memories. My own take me back to the late 1930s and early 40s when I attended old District #10 school at Marshville, NY. The first order of each day was ringing the bell far up in the belfry to bring the students in for the beginning of the session. Everyone wanted to be the one to pull the rope to ring that bell. It is not so hard to realize that in earlier days my mother and her father before her had wanted to do it also. Being a naturalborn collector, I will now search for some mementos of my own days in that school. The building is long gone, its contents sold or given away not long before it was torn down. I secured some of the things that had accumulated bits

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or clerk. Not many people came to those meetings but the business of running that small school district did get done. The annual budgets are there also. Each year the teacher was paid about $1000 and the entire budget was roughly twice that. The old minute books span from May 3, 1921 to May 4, 1943. The entries reflected a country lifestyle that was much the same for the school as for the taxpayers’ homes. Grandpa Garlock who was a skilled carpenter presented his bill for 40 hours of labor in putting the school building in order at 50 cents an hour. Setting a flag pole was discussed and my father in his minutes as clerk dated May 6, 1941, recorded that the trustee was to get a new steel pole. In his minutes of his final meeting, dated May 4, 1943, only eight voters were present. The steel flag pole again was mentioned as follows: “Flag pole which fell over will be reset by trustees.” Marshville school doubtless would still continue for a few years but the final bell was soon to ring. In the far back of the book was a copy of a very official looking document under the heading “The University of the State of New York.” It bore a fancy gold seal and the date — June 5, 1944 — was just two days after my 14th birthday. It laid out the Central School District, which would be the death of one room country schools in our area. Now only the Amish schools remain as a reminder that once there was a much different education system.

In addition to the old minute book, I located among my keepsakes reminders of fellow students, some of whom were very special to me. From the fourth, fifth and sixth grades three steel ring bound 10 in. by 16 in. books have survived. Fossils, dinosaurs and rocks were the topics. They sure prove that at 10 years old I was not a budding artist. I must admit that adding another 73 years has not improved that trait in me. Even the heavy white paper they were done on brings back a memory. It was from the ends of large rolls that came from the Beech Nut printing department where dad was a foreman from 1932 until 1970. There were only a few students in old District #10 at that time and several are no longer with us. A girl named Carolyn Scott and her sister Ruth can never escape from my memory. Carolyn had a great God-given talent as an artist. That talent shows up in these old project books. As a boy I so admired her long dark braids. I guess I thought that Indian girls had braids just like that. It was a sad day when she entered high school and in an effort to be modern those braids were cut off. I still have the one she gave me so many years ago. The lot where old District #10 school stood at Marshville is now just another vacant piece of rural land but nothing can eradicate those memories of long ago. Skip Barshied, Stone Arabia, June 24, 2013

White coal from page 3 average season about 27,500 gallons of water per acre are necessary each week in order to give the proper moisture.” The dispatch goes on to say, “The land is so sandy that a foundation underneath has to be established before the best results can be secured. This foundation is secured by a variety of ways.” The report does not specify what those “ways” were. Since photographs show a lot of poultry and large farm animals on the farm, manure from these animals was undoubtedly part of the foundation. The report goes on to state that “Fertilizers were used but in no larger quantities than used on the rich river bottom land [Connecticut River Valley land.]” Apparently, they refer to commercial fertilizer as opposed to manure. Using the Connecticut River water for irrigation may have also contributed fertilization since the river and its tributaries were commonly used as a repository of untreated sewage. River silt was undoubtedly taken up with irrigation water, also contributing to the building up of soil. A large pipe on the river bank acted as a penstock to carry river water from a considerable distance upstream. It is thought that the penstock powered a water ram to supply river water to the fields. Rather than rotating crops, commonly recommended, the experimental farm found that growing onions and tobacco on the same land for several years in a row actually increased yield. The Globe article goes on, “In

other words, it is necessary to cultivate both tobacco and onions, probably five years, on the same soil before the best results are secured.” Often the underground root structure of plants is equal to the plant’s foliage above ground, so that organic root residue accumulation after several years would account for increased yields. In a report to investors, the men at the head of the Turners Falls Company reported that they were hardheaded businessmen who view the experimental farm as a success. “Tobacco, onions and potatoes can be raised on formerly worthless land, now worth from $250 –$500 and acre. In five years, with the use of water, so-called worthless land on the Montague Plains can be made to grow large crops at a cost that will bring a large return on money invested.” Since the experiment demonstrated that the former “waste” land could produce profitable crops, it seems strange that the upwards of 2,000 acres of land successfully put under cultivation in 1927 did not continue, probably because of the Great Depression, which followed soon after the stock market crash of 1929.

A Mack truck loaded to capacity with potatoes, leaves the farm for market in 1927 with a profitable load.

The fairly small Koch farm that was the core of the larger experiment continued for a number of years as a smaller operation, successfully raising chickens, growing strawberries and other market produce. Much of the 2,000 acres eventually was developed as home sites. The Turners Falls Airport continually encroached on the Koch Farm until the Koch Farm land and buildings were taken by eminent domain. The Turners Falls Fire Department burned the house and barn for training purposes and to clear the way for airport expansion. Sadly, no crops of any kind grow on this reclaimed land today.


Even with low interest rates that make buying a car more affordable, many consumers are leasing a new car or truck instead. Here are six tips to get a good deal when leasing a new car or truck: • Understand the difference between leasing and buying Generally, buying a car and holding onto it for many years is the least expensive way to own a vehicle. While cars and trucks depreciate, or lose value over time, the vehicles retain some value that you can always turn around and apply toward your next purchase.

But if you lease, you only get to drive the car for a fixed period of time. Your monthly lease payments go toward paying for the depreciation in the vehicle, not ownership. And there are restrictions on how many miles you can rack up on the car during the lease period. When the lease term expires, you can buy the car or lease another new vehicle. Leasing offers many benefits, particularly when it comes to payments. While some dealerships will ask for some money down, the monthly payment will typically be less than what you’d pay if you borrowed money to buy the car. And the short-term commitment opens the

door for you to drive a newer car after a couple of years. Still not sure whether it lease or buy? Try running the numbers through online calculators like this o n e : www.bankrate.com/calculators/auto/lease-buycar.aspx • Don’t forget to haggle Consumers have become accustomed to haggling over the price of a car, down payment or interest rate on a loan when buying a car, but few realize you can employ the same strategy when you lease. As in a purchase transaction, experts recommend someone contemplating a lease take steps to familiarize themselves with the sticker price and

any factory incentives being offered on the car. Then haggle with the sales staff to get a lower price before applying the lease terms. • Be realistic about mileage Lease contracts include limits over how many miles you can put on the vehicle. Once you go above the limit set forth in the lease, you’ll be charged a per-mile rate. Be realistic about how much you’ll need to drive, or you could face hundreds of dollars in fees at the end of the lease term. One option is to prepay for additional miles at a lower rate. But make sure you have it built into the lease agreement that you’ll be credited for any unused miles.

Automotive • Avoid leases longer than three years Dealerships are increasingly offering longer lease periods, but you should resist leases that run for more than three years, advises Philip Reed, senior consumer advice editor for car research site Edmunds.com. That’s because longer lease terms can expose you to having to pay for repairs such as tire and brake replacements. • Think twice about buying your leased vehicle At the end of the lease term, you’ll have the right to buy the car you’ve

been leasing for a predetermined amount known as the residual value. With few exceptions, you’ll generally end up paying more than if you had just bought the car to begin with. Get an estimate for the value of their vehicle when they near the end of their lease term before deciding whether to buy it. • Remember there’s always an out Websites like www.leasetrader.com and www.swapalease.com connect drivers who want out of their lease agreement early with car shoppers looking to take over an auto lease contract.

Car Care Council tips help save money Consumers’ pain at the pump is back with high gas prices. No need to worry, says the Car Care Council. A few simple and inexpensive vehicle maintenance tips can help alleviate the pain. “You can’t control the price of gas, but you can control how much gas you burn by performing proper maintenance and how you drive. Performing simple and inexpensive maintenance can

save as much as $1,200 per year in gas costs,” said Rich White, executive director, Car Care Council. The Car Care Council offers these gas-saving maintenance tips: • Keep your car properly tuned to improve gas mileage by an average of 4 percent. • Keep tires properly inflated and improve gas

mileage by up to 3.3 percent. • Replace dirty or clogged air filters and improve gas mileage by as much as 10 percent. • Improve gas mileage by 1-2 percent by using the manufacturer’s recommended grade of motor oil. Driving behavior also impacts fuel efficiency. The council offers these

gas saving driving tips: • Observe the speed limit. Gas mileage decreases rapidly above 50 mph. Each 5 mph over 50 mph is like paying an additional $0.25 per gallon for gas, according to www.fueleconomy.gov. • Avoid excessive idling. Idling gets zero miles per gallon. Warming up the vehicle for one or two minutes is sufficient.

• Avoid quick starts and stops. Aggressive driving can lower gas mileage by 33 percent on the highway and 5 percent in the city. • Consolidate trips. Several short trips taken from a cold start can use twice as much gas as one longer multi-purpose trip. • Don’t haul unneeded

items in the trunk. An extra 100 pounds in the trunk reduces fuel economy up to 2 percent. The Car Care Council is the source of information for the “Be Car Care Aware” consumer education campaign promoting the benefits of regular vehicle care, maintenance and repair to consumers. For a free copy of the council’s Car Care Guide or for more information, visit www.carcare.org.

Save gas by planning and combining trips Combining errands into one trip saves you time and money. Several short trips taken from a cold start can use twice as much fuel as a longer multipurpose trip covering the same distance when the engine is warm. Trip planning ensures that traveling is done when the engine is warmed-up and efficient, and it can reduce the distance you travel. Commuting Stagger your work hours to avoid peak rush

hours. Drive your most fuel-efficient vehicle. Consider telecommuting (working from home) if your employer permits it. Take advantage of carpools and ride-share programs. You can cut your weekly fuel costs in half and save wear on your car if you take turns driving with other commuters. Many urban areas allow vehicles with multiple passengers to use High Occupancy Ve-

hicle (HOV) lanes which are typically less congested, further improving your fuel economy. Consider using public transit if it is available and convenient for you. The American Public Transit Transportation Association has links to information about public transportation in your state. Traveling A roof rack or carrier provides additional cargo space and may allow you to meet your needs with a

smaller car. However, a loaded roof rack can decrease your fuel economy by 5 percent. Reduce aerodynamic drag and improve your fuel economy by placing items inside the trunk whenever possible. Avoid carrying unneeded items, especially heavy ones. An extra 100 pounds in the trunk reduces a typical car’s fuel economy by 1-2 percent. Source: www.fueleconomy.gov

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• THE COUNTRY EDITOR • July 3, 2013

by Alex Veiga, AP Business Writer

Page 5

Six tips on getting a good deal on an auto lease


Page 6 July 3, 2013 • THE COUNTRY EDITOR •

Simple ways older drivers can save money on auto insurance (BPT) — Are your auto insurance premiums too high? Maybe they are, but not for reasons you might think. Insurance companies aren’t charging you higher premiums because you’re in an over-50 age group. You may be paying too much because you haven’t done anything to lower the cost of your premiums. Check out these money-saving tips — they could be right up your alley.

insurance with that company, too. • Consider asking about higher deductibles. In some cases, if you increase your deductible, you could lower your premiums. Of course, that means you’ll have to pay more money out-of-pocket if you’re in an accident.

• Comparison shop. You don’t need to stay with the same insurance com-

• Take an AARP Driver Safety course. Available both online and in the classroom — in English and Spanish — this course teaches valuable defensive driving tech-

pany forever. Prices vary from company to company. Just be sure you discuss the identical coverage with each company representative. Also, don’t go by price alone. Consider the company’s reputation, customer service and available discounts. Look online at customer reviews to get a better picture.

niques and provides a refresher about the rules of the road. When you complete the course, you could qualify for a multiyear discount from your auto insurance company (check with your insurance agent for more details). Visit www.aarp.org/drive to find a course in your area.

• Combine policies with one carrier. You may save money if you insure all your vehicles on a single policy. Your premium may also go down if you have life or homeowners’

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coverage. If your car is worth less than 10 times the premium, purchasing the coverage may not be cost effective, according to the Insurance Information Institute (III). But don’t drop your liability coverage, which can help cover expenses for property or bodily damage you cause while driving your car. • Take advantage of lowmileage discounts. Some

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your car, such as air bags, automatic safety belts, anti-lock brakes, daytime running lights, or even an approved alarm system. In addition to lowering your premium, these features will help keep you safe on the road.

• Ask about car-safety discounts. Some insurers give discounts for having certain safety devices in

• If you’re in the market for a new car, consider purchasing a low-profile vehicle. It’s more expen-

sive to insure a vehicle that’s expensive to repair, popular with thieves or known for not having a good safety record. To find out vehicles’ risk levels, visit the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety website. Everyone’s trying to save money these days. By following these tips, you’ll be in the driver’s seat when it comes to auto insurance premiums.


by Jan P. Case Salutations. Summertime brings fun, sun and vacations. Mr. Lee is in full summer mode and will be on vacation for a couple of weeks. Before he left he asked me to fill in for him by writing the Hello Again section. Instant fear and performance anxiety set in. I asked myself: how am I going to deliver the Hello Again message in the same fashion as Mr. Lee? Simply put, I am not. He set my mind at ease and said I should write about whatever I would like, in my own fashion. Thank You, Mr. Lee. What I like to write about is my life and my family. Some light, some medium and luckily some very rare somber events that we have endured. I appreciate my family’s good humor because sometimes telling their stories can be very humbling for them. I also appreciate having an audience to hear my stories. Thank you for reading and hopefully enjoying them. Salutations. Free Fireworks A couple of summers ago my mom called and

We chose to set up our lawn chairs behind the local ice cream shop, and eagerly waited in anticipation. Darkness soon fell, the ice cream soon settled and it was time for the BOOM. I love fireworks. I love the stillness of anticipation, then the collective ooo and ahh of the crowd. I love to watch the happy expressions on my loved one’s faces. They make me smile and they make me have that happy-cry face that so unsettles my teenager. She does not get unnerved because she is angry, but because she is confused. She wonders why fireworks make her mom cry. The tears are also a little bit of a mystery for myself; I think it is just that it is pure enjoyment. For a few minutes on a summer night all I have to focus on is the brightly lit fireworks in the sky. I do not have to think about the stresses

of daily life, bills, schedules, home maintenance. I can just let my mind go and enjoy the show. Pure raw entertainment. I did not have to drive far to see them; I did not have to try to pick the right DVD — one that will make three generations happy; I did not have to plug in anything — no cables, no remote, nothing. I did not even have to adjust the volume. The only decision I had to make was where to set up my chair. On this particular occasion I actually felt a little too close to the show, but not near as close as the next time I enjoyed a firework display. That time, Abigail, one of her friends and I decided to check out the local junior dragster races. They were fun — boy those little kids go fast! During intermission they were putting on a fireworks show, bonus. They set the fireworks off from the infield of the track. All was going as planned, then not so much. First there was a warning shot — a stray firework hit the tire barrier around the track. Okay, that happens. No big deal. I did notice a father take his toddler son’s hand and say, “Let’s go watch them from the parking lot.” A few more successful booms, then I looked across the track and I

noticed the folks putting on the fireworks show scattering, running as fast as they could from the infield. I yelled to Abbie “time to go!” and the bleachers that I had timidly navigated a few minutes before were descended like I was an Olympic hurdler on the last turn. It turned out there were no injuries or damage. The infield was a little ablaze for a few minutes, and I do believe when I passed the track office I did see them surfing the internet for fire retardant suits. No harm, no foul. I did not cry at those fireworks and they are so far the most memorable I have viewed. As the fourth of July approaches I take delight that so do the fireworks. There will be lots of opportunities to enjoy a brightly lit show in the sky, to sit back and wait for the collective oohs and ahhs. Perhaps time to even shed a happy tear or two and best of all, they are free. I hope you enjoyed my recollection of a very interesting fireworks display, truly one I will never forget. Thank you for reading. You can read more from Jan on her blog: janpcase.blogspot.com

Lyme Disease Advisory Montgomery County Public Health wants to remind everyone that Lyme Disease is caused by the bite of a deer tick. You can reduce the likelihood of a tick bite by taking steps to protect yourself if you live in or visit areas with Lyme Disease activity. In tick-infested areas, your best protection is to avoid contact with soil, leaf litter and vegetation. However, if you garden, hike, camp, hunt, work or otherwise spend time in the outdoors, you can still protect yourself: • Wear light-colored clothing with a tight weave to spot ticks easily. • Wear enclosed shoes, long pants and a longsleeved shirt. Tuck pant legs into socks or boots and shirt into pants. • Check clothes and any exposed skin frequently for ticks while outdoors. • Consider using insect repellent (Follow appropriate precautions and product instructions when using these products). • Stay on cleared, welltraveled trails. Walk in the center of trails. Avoid dense woods and bushy areas.

• Bathe or shower as soon as possible after going indoors (preferably within two hours) to wash off and more easily find ticks that may be on you. • Do a final, full-body tick check at the end of the day (also check children and pets), and remove ticks promptly. Anyone who has been bitten by a tick should be watched closely for at least 30 days. Typical symptoms of Lyme disease include: fever, headache, fatigue, and a large, expanding skin rash that may have a bull’s-eye appearance. If left untreated, infection can spread to joints, the heart, and the nervous system. Anyone who develops a fever or a rash after being bitten by a tick or spending time in tick-infested areas should seek prompt medical care. Most patients with Lyme disease can be treated successfully with a few weeks of antibiotics, especially if treated early. Lyme disease prevention begins with recognizing the risks and taking action. For more information on L yme disease, please visit www.cdc.gov/Lyme.

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• THE COUNTRY EDITOR • July 3, 2013

Hello Again,

said, “What are you and Abbie doing tonight? Come and watch the fireworks. They are free.” It took me a couple of minutes, then I said to her, “Mom aren’t all fireworks free? They are in the sky; you cannot charge admission for them.” She laughed, just a little. We joined her. They were the fireworks at the local Fireman’s Fair.

Page 7

June 29, 2013


Page 8 July 3, 2013 • THE COUNTRY EDITOR •

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and Georgetown University graduate, Heintz was doing well in her Wall Street life. She was 32, lived in a swanky apartment, frequented trendy restaurants and sported a pricey wardrobe. But at that conference call Heintz, a 1995 graduate of the former St. Margaret’s-McTernan School, was daydreaming. She was thinking of the plot for a young adult novel she and her best friend had concocted

Wall Street pavement again, or she could do what she had secretly dreamed of doing. She could become a writer. She chose the latter. Earlier this year, her book, “The Six Train to Wisconsin,” made it to the semifinals of Amazon.com’s breakthrough novel awards. “I believed in this book, and if I was wrong, I felt, ‘so be it.’ But I didn’t think I was wrong,” said Heintz, sitting in her living room-turned-office with her ‘warrior lap dog,’ Emerson, on her lap. “I had really committed to having this second career in writing.” She published her book with Amazon’s independent print site, “Create Space.” Since her return to Wolcott, where she lives in what was her parents’ living room, Heintz has written three novels, but “The Six Train to Wisconsin,” is her first published novel. It is the story of a married couple, Oliver and Kai, and Oliver’s attempts to save Kai from her out-ofcontrol telepathy. The effort lands Kai in the quiet Wisconsin town he abandoned a decade ago, where he must confront the secrets of his past to save their future. “I always feel frustrated by how romance novels tend to end just when the couple gets together,” she said. “To me, that’s when the heart of the story truly begins. Finding each other is easy. Staying together — that’s the epic journey.” Amazon’s “Breakthrough Novel” award is a contest sponsored by Amazon.com, Penguin Group, Hewlett Packard, CreateSpace and BookSurge to publish and promote a manuscript by an unknown or unpublished

when they were both 11. And what a plot: A girl accidentally time travels to solve a murder. “My day life was so mundane,” said Heintz, who moved back to Wolcott three years ago. “It’s very cut and dry and my imagination was so stifled that I needed an outlet.” When Heintz was ultimately laid off in 2010, she realized that she had reached a crossroads in her life. She could pick herself up and pound the

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author, reports USA Today. The winner receives a publishing contract with Amazon Publishing and an advance of $50,000. Four first prize winners will each receive a publishing contract with an advance of $15,000, according to the online retailer. The contest is broken up into two categories, young adult and adult with different genres within those categories. Heintz was a semifinalist in the adult fantasy contest. The designation came after a long slog through writers’ conferences, contacts with more than 150 publishing agents and editors and years of conjuring plots and putting them to paper. It had come as affirmation for the critical U-turn her life had taken, a shift that put her in a place she never imagined she would be, living a life that had long eluded her. Had Heintz continued on the path she had set out to follow, she says, she would likely be in China now, working with international businesses, traveling throughout Asia. She had fallen in love with the Chinese language when she was at St. Margaret’s-McTernan School (now Chase Collegiate) after reading an English translation of “Tao Te Ching,” or “Book of the Way,” by Lao Tzu. “I really liked the philosophy that you were in charge of your path. You were responsible for everything you did.” Although raised Catholic, she is partial to eastern philosophies, particularly Buddhism. “I do tend to hold myself very responsible for what happens to me. I take responsibility and I take ownership. And I make changes if I have to. It makes me live my life more fully because if I’m not happy I don’t have to just endure.” Heintz attended Georgetown, where she studied Chinese and graduated with a degree

Dining in finance and international business. She said she has always had a flair for math and logic, although she wrote poetry and fiction from the time she was 7 or 8. She still has those initial forays in colorful hardback journals that share bookshelves along with works by J.R.R. Tolkien, and Iris Chang, John Green and Charlaine Harris. But she worked in finance for years, partly by desire and partly because of a herniated disc she suffered shortly after her graduation from Georgetown in 1999. “It made me much more focused on business,” Heintz said. “With the back injury, I needed insurance. So I always needed a steady income with (health) benefits.” In 2008, Heintz underwent an artificial disc replacement at Lenox Hill Hospital, which changed her life. “My whole life was being dictated to me by my health,” she said. “My decisions were always driven by my health concerns. It wasn’t the life I dreamed of when I was in college.” Heintz said her 2010 layoff, combined with her improved health, made making the jump into writing full time easier. “For the first time since college I could make a decision that wasn’t based on my spine,” she said. “My writing had become so much more of a passion.” Heintz calls “The Six Train to Wisconsin” ‘speculative fiction,’ which she describes as a type of fantasy. She says her career shift has left her more content. “I feel more like me,” she said. “I’m the me I used to be before the back injury, before New York. The me who was always open to new experiences. “When you’re being you, you meet so many other genuine people,” she said. “It’s been really lovely.”

• THE COUNTRY EDITOR • July 3, 2013

by Tracey O’Shaughnessy, Republican-American WOLCOTT, CN — Kourtney Heintz was sitting through another two- to four-hour conference call, fretting over Harry Potter. It was 2006 and the author, J.K. Rowling, was finishing up her celebrated young adult series, which Heintz had devoured. Heintz was working as an operational risk associate at the Royal Bank of Canada Capital Markets. A Wolcott native

Page 9

Author turns Wall Street layoff into second career


Page 10 July 3, 2013 • THE COUNTRY EDITOR •

Gardening Tips by Dr. Leonard Perry, Extension Professor, University of Vermont In her book Trowel and Error, author Sharon Lovejoy covers over 700 gardening shortcuts, tips, and home remedies for plant problems. These often involve saving and reusing (“repurposing”) old items from home and garden, or clever nonchemical means to get rid of pests. If you garden, you’re bound to find a new use for an item or different technique to make your gardening easier and perhaps cheaper. Under the category of tools, consider these ideas and items: • Use a mixture of equal parts white vinegar, rubbing alcohol, and water to scrub and clean dirty tools and white salts residue from pot rims. • Old kitchenware can be reused, such as kitchen tongs for picking up prickly plants or stinging nettles, grape-

fruit knives for weeding containers, and apple corers for “dibbling” in small bulbs and plants. • Heavy-duty paper clips (the kind that hold stacks of paper together) have many uses, such as holding shade cloth to frames, or tightening glove cuffs to keep out unwanted insects and soil. • Keep a used soap dispenser, filled with mineral oil, near your tools; after done for the day, wipe dirt from tools using a scouring pad if needed, then wipe with the oil. • Save those wide-mesh tomato or fruit baskets (as you often get with strawberries). Line next spring with paper, then fill with soil, before sowing seeds of melons, squash or cucumbers. Then plant the entire basket, the roots being able to grow through the mesh openings.

laundry baskets to harvest produce, then wash with the hose outdoors to save a mess and clogging sinks with dirt indoors. • Use Velcro tape for attaching vines to surfaces. • To keep garden twine from getting tangled, place in an old coffee or grated cheese container, then guide the string through a hole in the top. An old watering can serves similarly, the twine coming out through the spout. • Mark inch and foot marks on handles of tools, such as hole diggers, shovels, and hoes, to know how deep to dig or spacing for transplants for instance. • Laminate seed packets, then attach to popsicle sticks or tongue depressors for garden labels. Cut strips of old miniblinds for labels to write on with permanent marker.

• Use old colanders and

Under the category of garden pests and problems, consider these solutions: • First use a forceful stream of water on aphids, mites and spittlebugs. Up to 90 percent of problems can be cured this simply. • Get rid of many Japanese beetles from roses and other of their favorite plants simply by holding a pail of soapy water under the branch, then tapping the branch so beetles fall off. • Do you have wireworms on root vegetables such as carrots and beets? Then put a potato piece on a stick and plunge into the soil. Remove the stick every few days and discard the wireworm-infested bait. • You may have heard of placing saucers of beer (old or cheap works fine) in the garden to attract, and drown, slugs. A lure

• If you grow fruit trees, particularly apples, place 4- to 6-inch wide cardboard collars around the trunks. Codling moth larvae, if present, often take refuge under these. Check and remove any larvae weekly, then replace new collars. • There are many home remedies for ants. An ant hotel, where they’ll check in but not out, consists of a mixture of 10 teaspoons corn syrup and 1 teaspoon borax in a small, lidded container (with holes in the lid large enough for ants to enter). You also can spray ant routes with apple cider

vinegar which confuses them so they can’t find their way home. • There are several solutions for moles, including solutions you can buy or make, and devices you can buy. Some have success with toy windmills placed around the garden. Their vibrations disturb and may drive them away. Or sink a line of glass bottles in the soil with the necks exposed. Wind blowing across the tops creates a whistling sound which disrupts their sensitive hearing and may send them elsewhere. (Hopefully the sound doesn’t do the same for the gardener!) These are merely a sampling of the ideas from author Sharon Lovejoy, with other categories on home potions, attracting allies to help with pests, success with seeds, soil-related tips including composts and mulches, and indoor plants.

New York expands no smoking zones in state parks ALBANY, NY (AP) — Smoking will be banned in more places within New York state parks this summer. The governor’s office recently announced that the state is expanding the number of smoke-free areas at state parks, pools and historic sites, including many of New York’s popular beaches. Governor Andrew Cuomo says residents should be able to enjoy the outdoors “free of pollution from secondhand smoke.” The new rules vary from park to park, so the

HOSKING SALES • WEEKLY SALES EVERY MONDAY Weekly Sales Every Monday starting at 11:30 with Misc. & small animals, 1:00 Dairy. Call for more info and sale times. Our Volume is increasing weekly - join your neighbors & send your livestock this way! Monday, June 24th sale - cull ave. .65 Top cow $.83, bulls/steers $.70 - $.98, bull calves top $1.23, heifer calves top $1.05, Dairy feeders $.50 - $.70. Slaughter hogs $.64. Monday, July 8th - Monthly Heifer Sale. Monday, July 15th - Monthly Sheep, Lamb, Goat & Pig Sale. Sat., July 20th - In Wellsboro, NY - 9:00AM. J&C Wholesale Auction from Antique to Modern, check out website for pictures and full details. Monday, July 22nd - Normal Monday Sale. Monday, July 29th - Normal Monday Sale. Saturday, Aug. 31st - 2PM - Empire State Farms - Total Fullblood Wagyu Dispersal. 170 Head sell, for full details contact James Danekas 916-837-1432, Mercedes Danekas 916-849-2725 or www.jdaonline.com. Saturday, Oct. 19th - sale held in Richfield Springs, OHM Holstein Club - Sale Chairman Jason Pullis 315-794-6737. Call with your consignments. NOTE STARTING JULY 1ST WE WILL BE STARTING OUR MORNING MISC. & SMALL ANIMALS AT 11:30 AM DUE TO THE INCREASE VOLUME - ALL OTHER SALE TIMES WILL REMAIN THE SAME. LOOKING TO HAVE A FARM SALE OR JUST SELL A FEW - GIVE US A CALL. ** Trucking Assistance - Call the Sale Barn or check out our trucker list on our Web-Site. Call to advertise in any of these sales it makes a difference. Directions: Hosking Sales 6096 NYS Rt. 8, 30 miles South of Utica & 6 miles North of New Berlin, NY. www.hoskingsales.com Call today with your consignments.

Tom & Brenda Hosking 6096 NYS Rt. 8 New Berlin, NY 13411

for earwigs consists of equal parts canola oil and soy sauce. Other slug attractants are grapefruit and melon rinds, bran sprinkled on cabbage leaves, or simply a slightly elevated board placed on moist soil. Check all such traps every day or two.

607-699-3637 or 607-847-8800 cell: 607-972-1770 or 1771

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3 Parcel Public Real Estate Auction Saturday, August 3rd • 10:00am. Real Estate Sells 12:00 noon Parcel A 77 Acres, Parcel B 7.5 Acres with Buildings, Parcel C 2 Acre Building Lot n/a, All 3 Properties Border West Canada Creek!! Also Equipment, 2 Enclosed Trailers, Snowmobiles, Tools, 2002 Handicap Van with lift, Furniture and more!! Don't Miss This Super Auction with 100 's of tools and other items!!!! 359 Fishing Rock Rd., Newport/Middleville, NY 13416 Take Rt. 28 to Middleville turn Left on Fishing Rock Rd., or Rt. 169 West of Little Falls to Middleville turn left at light go 1/3 mile to Fishing Rock Rd. on Right. Pictures and details on auctionzip.com ID 29324

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LAKE GENEVA, WI (AP) — In his 40 years behind the wheel of the Geneva Lake mailboat, Capt. Neill Frame has seen some dirty tricks played on the mailboat jumpers — the young employees who jump from boat to dock to deliver summer mail. One resident ran a garden hose from the house, down to the pier and into the back of the mailbox. He watched from his home and waited for the jumper to approach the mailbox and sprayed him as soon as the box was opened. Sometimes, jumpers face other challenges. “Dogs get in the way on the pier, and the jumpers lose their timing,” Frame said. “Some of the homeowners are crafty: All it takes is a piece of Scotch tape or rubber band on the mailbox to throw the jumper’s timing off,” he said. Frame was back on the water on June 12 as nine people, ranging in age

from 17 to 21, tried out for a chance to be one of the mailboat jumpers. Some were seasoned veterans, hopping onto the boat as if stepping on a sidewalk. Some were rookies, slamming into the side and gripping the boat for dear life. The Geneva Lake Mailboat Tour has been a tradition since 1916. Tourists sit back and watch as people jump on and off the boat to deliver mail and newspapers to mailboxes on docks. In addition to focusing on the jumps and trying not to fall in the lake, the jumpers narrate the lake tour for passengers. The 75-foot boat is filled to its capacity of about 160 passengers most days. Frame has been the mailboat captain since the early 1970s. The retired boat caretaker returns to Lake Geneva Cruise Line every summer to participate in the Mailboat Tour. He said it’s the jumpers and the tourists that keep him coming back. “If I had been captain all

these years just going around and around the same lake, I probably would have given up a long time ago,” Frame said. Jumpers aren’t the only ones with challenges during the tour. Frame has to be sure during deliveries that the boat isn’t going too fast, that it’s properly aligned with the pier and, above all, that jumpers are safe. If a jumper falls into the lake, Frame has to make sure the propellers won’t harm them. Frame tries to coach the rookie jumpers. During the June 12 tryouts, he had the experienced jumpers show the rookies how the process works. He then had each rookie make a jump. He told them what they did wrong before having them make the jump at least one more time. “That’s the only way they can learn,” Frame said. “I don’t want to see anyone get hurt, so I want them to do it right. If they’re afraid, they’re never going to get it. They should be apprehensive, but they can’t be afraid,

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because that’s when they do something stupid and get hurt. “Some of them will never get it. We’ve had kids who have tried and kept trying and haven’t figured it out.” Frame, along with current and former employees of Lake Geneva Cruise Line, help pick the jumpers from tryouts. Frame says jumpers must be athletic, work very well with people and show interest in the area in order to present the tour narration. In addition to delivering mail, they are giving a history lesson, Frame said. What started as a necessity in the early 1900s grew into tradition for the Mailboat Tours, and it has become an attraction that is filled to capacity by tourists almost every trip. “I can’t remember the names of all the kids I’ve worked with over the years,” Frame said. “I like the people that come as customers every day and I love working with the kids and being part of the whole experience.”

• THE COUNTRY EDITOR • July 3, 2013

by Samantha Jacquest, Janesville Gazette

Page 11

Mailboat captain recruits summertime mail-jumpers

The “hazzards” our Mailperson faces are a little different than the ones your mail carrier faces. Things like wet paint on piers, rafts and floating toys to dodge, an the occasional prank of someone tying the mailbox shut, can delay the Mailperson’s return to the boat just enough to make the return trip a wet one! But the mail must go through - delivery continues despite a splash in the lake! Photo source: Gage Lake Geneva Cruise Line

50 years after lesson, Fitchburg woman flies again by Michael Hartwell FITCHBURG, MA — Stepping onto the runway at Fitchburg Municipal Airport, Santa Amico said a lot has changed in the 50 years since she last took a flight lesson. “I can’t believe all of the planes here now,” she said. Now 71, she took lessons when she was 21 during the early 1960s at the same spot. A Fitchburg native, Amico stopped taking lessons when she moved to Boston, where she taught English and literature at Fisher College and worked at the Boston Children’s Museum and the Museum of Fine Art. She’s also a published poet and had a radio show at MIT, where she spoke with artists and musicians. She moved back to Fitchburg after more than 30 years in Boston and New York. Amico said she hadn’t thought again about flying until December, when her cousin bought her a

helicopter ride over Boston as a gift. She remembered those abandoned lessons from the 1960s. She said she’s not sure if she wants to take all the steps to pursue a pilot’s license, but was eager for a chance to fly again. Flight instructor Ben Williams went through the pre-flight check with her, which included checking the propeller and the front of the wings on the single-engine plane for cracks and dents, along with testing the fuel for water contamination by draining a cupful from each wing and the bottom of the airplane body and looking for bubbles. Wearing dark, loose-fitting clothes and with her long gray hair bobbypinned behind her head, Amico ran into some trouble on the runway just before Williams was going to take off. She couldn’t reach the pedals, so the seat had to be cranked to an angle to give her the range of motion she needed while still

being able to see the windows. The trip was a loop to Mount Monadnock in Jaffrey, NH. Williams conducted the take-off and landing, and transferred control to Amico in between. It was a hot day, and Williams said that made flying at low altitude bumpy. During the flight, he refreshed Amico on flying basics, such as avoiding clouds because there may be other aircraft hidden inside, and to keep a hand’s width between the dashboard and the horizon to maintain a level altitude. Back on the ground, Amico said flying requires a good rhythm, just like mixing batter with a whisk. She said the basics of flying a plane haven’t changed since she took her first lessons. “Otherwise, I probably wouldn’t have done it,” she said. She said she had a lot of fun but isn’t sure if she’ll take to the sky again because of the costs involved.


Page 12 July 3, 2013 • THE COUNTRY EDITOR •

Research shows where trash accumulates in the deep sea Surprisingly large amounts of discarded trash end up in the ocean. Plastic bags, aluminum cans, and fishing debris not only clutter our beaches, but accumulate in open-ocean areas such as the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch.” Now, a paper by researchers at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) shows that trash is also accumulating in the deep sea, particularly in Monterey Canyon. Kyra Schlining, lead

they saw, as well as when and where this debris was observed. In total, the researchers counted over 1,500 observations of deep-sea debris, at dive sites from Vancouver Island to the Gulf of California, and as far west as the Hawaiian Islands. In the recent paper, the researchers focused on seafloor debris in and around Monterey Bay — an area in which MBARI conducts over 200 research dives a year. In this region alone, the re-

A discarded tire sits on a ledge 868 meters (2,850 feet) below the ocean surface in Monterey Canyon. Photo courtesy of ©2009 MBARI

author on this study, said, “We were inspired by a fisheries study off Southern California that looked at seafloor trash down to 365 m. We were able to continue this search in deeper water — down to 4,000 m. Our study also covered a longer time period, and included more in situ observations of deep-sea debris than any previous study I’m aware of.” To complete this extensive study, Schlining and her coauthors combed through 18,000 hours of underwater video collected by MBARI’s remotely operated vehicles (ROVs). Over the past 22 years, technicians in MBARI’s video lab recorded virtually every object and animal that appeared in these videos. These annotations are compiled in MBARI’s Video Annotation and Reference System (VARS). For this study, video technicians searched the VARS database to find every video clip that showed debris on the seafloor. They then compiled data on all the different types of debris

searchers noted over 1,150 pieces of debris on the seafloor. The largest proportion of the debris — about one third of the total — consisted of objects made of plastic. Of these

tin cans. Other common debris included rope, fishing equipment, glass bottles, paper, and cloth items. The researchers found that trash was not randomly distributed on the seafloor. Instead, it collected on steep, rocky slopes, such as the edges of Monterey Canyon, as well as in a few spots in the canyon axis. The researchers speculate that debris accumulates where ocean currents flow past rocky outcrops or other obstacles. The researchers also discovered that debris was more common in the deeper parts of the canyon, below 2,000 m (6,500 feet). Schlining commented, “I was surprised that we saw so much trash in deeper water. We don’t usually think of our daily activities as affecting life two miles deep in the ocean.” Schlining added, “I’m sure that there’s a lot more debris in the canyon that we’re not seeing. A lot of it gets buried by underwater landslides and sediment movement. Some of it may also be carried into deeper water, farther down the canyon.” In the same areas where they saw trash on the seafloor, the researchers also saw kelp, wood, and natural debris that originated on land.

negative impacts on marine life. The researchers observed several cases of animals trapped in old fishing gear. Other effects on marine life were more subtle. For example, debris in muddy-bottom areas was often used as shelter by seafloor animals, or as a hard surface on which animals anchored themselves. Although such associations seem to benefit the individual animals involved, they also reflect the fact that marine debris is creating changes in the existing natural biological communities. To make matters worse, the impacts of deep-sea trash may last for years. Near-freezing water, lack of sunlight, and low oxygen concen-

trations discourage the growth of bacteria and other organisms that can break down debris. Under these conditions, a plastic bag or soda can might persist for decades. MBARI researchers hope to do additional research to understand the long-term biological impacts of trash in the deep sea. Working with the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, they are currently finishing up a detailed study of the effects of a particularly large piece of marine debris — a shipping container that fell off a ship in 2004. During research expeditions, researchers occasionally retrieve trash from the deep sea. However, removing such de-

bris on a large scale is prohibitively expensive, and can sometimes do more damage than simply leaving it in place. Schlining noted, “The most frustrating thing for me is that most of the material we saw — glass, metal, paper, plastic — could be recycled.” She and her coauthors hope that their findings will inspire coastal residents and ocean users to recycle their trash instead of allowing it to end up in the ocean. In the conclusion of their article, they wrote, “Ultimately, preventing the introduction of litter into the marine environment through increased public awareness remains the most efficient and cost-effective solution to this dilemma.”

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A young rockfish hides out in a discarded shoe, 472 meters (1,548 feet) deep in San Gabriel Canyon, off Southern California. Photo courtesy of ©2010 MBARI

objects, more than half were plastic bags. Plastic bags are potentially dangerous to marine life because they can smother attached organisms or choke animals that consume them. Metal objects were the second most common type of debris seen in this study. About two thirds of these objects were aluminum, steel, or

This led them to conclude that much of the trash in Monterey Canyon comes from land-based sources, rather than from boats and ships. Although the MBARI study also showed a smaller proportion of lost fishing gear than did some previous studies, fishing gear accounted for the most obvious

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• THE COUNTRY EDITOR • July 3, 2013

If you ever thought that only modern technology promoted multi-tasking and multi-use, you were mistaken. Long before pocket knives came with

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July 3, 2013 • THE COUNTRY EDITOR •

Page 14

High volume of twins gets class aiming for Guinness Book of World Records WILMETTE, IL (AP) — Like a lot of kids, the two brothers from northern Illinois spent hours mar-

One practiced in the shower for an attempt at the loudest burp. Then Luke and Ryan

has the most sets of twins — two dozen of them — in a single grade.

The 24 sets of twins show some school pride, forming an ‘H’ for ‘Highcrest.’ Photo courtesy of the Chicago Tribune

veling at the weird and the wonderful in the Guinness Book of World Records — and wondering what they could do to get in it. Their friends tried endless pogo stick jumps.

Novosel, 11-year-old twins from Wilmette, IL, began counting up all the other twins in their school directory and came to a startling discovery. Highcrest Middle School, it would seem,

Texas couple completes bucket list with Maine trip AUGUSTA, MAINE (AP) — A Texas couple has fulfilled a lifelong dream by visiting Maine to watch the state Legislature at work. Seriously. The Portland Press H e r a l d (http://bit.ly/18mLCbP) reports that 86-year-old Marcine Webb and his wife, 81-year-old Nita Lou Webb, were in Augusta last week to complete a quest to visit every state capitol. Maine’s was the last one. When House Speaker Mark Eves announced the reason for their visit, the state representatives stood and cheered. The trip for the San Angelo, TX couple was a 65th wedding anniversary present from their children. They celebrate in August. They visited No. 49,

Juneau, Alaska, five years ago, but then stopped traveling because of Marcine Webb’s poor health. He’s been feeling better lately. Nita Lou Webb says the people of Maine are “honest and caring.”

“We were absolutely shocked,” said their mother, Nancy Fendley. And it wouldn’t just brush past the current

record of 16. “It’s blowing it away,” she said. With some help from mom and dad, the brothers submitted an application with Guinness earlier this year and after following up with birth certificates, photos and proof that all are enrolled at the school, they expect official recognition in several weeks. Most of the twins are fraternal. The breakdown: three sets of boyboy twins, 11 sets of girlgirl twins and 10 sets of boy-girl twins. The two sets of identical twins are girls. Another fun fact: In two of the pairings are twins who bridged the midnight hour and were born on different days. In every other way, the 48 students are typical fifth graders who are into their sports, their friends, their iPads and fighting with their siblings. But the fact that they all happen to be in the same grade at the same school is unusual. “I think it’s just statistically kind of bizarre,” Fendley said. An AP photographer

visited the school to take portraits of the pairs, who came prepared with matching outfits, striking poses (think rabbit ears) and wrapping their arms around each other in front of a bank of bright blue lockers. Sisters Mady and Mery Drilling-Coren celebrated their twin status Dr. Seuss style with red Tshirts identifying them as “Thing 1” and “Thing 2.” Three schools share the current record of 16 pairs of twins in one grade. They are Valley Southwoods Freshman High School in West Des

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• THE COUNTRY EDITOR • July 3, 2013

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Pennsylvania man carves out rep for app designs by Tom Avril PHILADELPHIA , PA — For anyone with a smartphone or tablet, it is the most fundamental of gestures. A simple swipe or “pull” of the finger, and the screen is “refreshed” — revealing the presence of new e-mails, tweets, messages, whatever. The brainchild of some vast corporation? Nope. Meet Loren Brichter, a low-key 28-year-old who lives in Bella Vista. “Pull-to-refresh” was a feature of an app that he created in 2008, which allowed people to use Twitter with their iPhones. Twitter bought him out in 2010, and after working there for a year or two, he now has created another company. First product: a word game called Letterpress,

which has been downloaded millions of times. Along the way, Brichter has become a sought-after adviser in the upper ranks of app programmers and designers, who tout his willingness to help others. “He doesn’t seem like he’s in it for the profit,” said programmer Samantha John, cofounder of New York-based Hopscotch Technologies. “My impression is that he actually really just likes programming and making awesome things.” Brichter moved here from the Bay Area about the same time as the deal with Twitter, which he said netted him a sum in the single-digit millions. He exemplifies the freewheeling spirit of a certain sector of the digital economy. Companies can be created from scratch

with little overhead beyond a computer, and its players are pretty mellow about such old-economy notions as intellectual property — willing to share ideas in order to promote the gospel of cool stuff. “It’s really a rising tide lifts all boats,” said Brichter, who this year was dubbed “the high priest of app design” by the Wall Street Journal. The creative energy is abetted by the increasing popularity of smartphones — now owned by 56 percent of U.S. adults, according to a new Pew Research Center survey. The ways that we interact with these handheld computers may now seem intuitive — dragging things on a touch screen or tilting the device to activate a feature — but such gestures were large-

Hitchhiking cat 'Mata Hairi' headed home to Oregon HELENA, MT— A welltraveled cat named “Mata Hairi” will soon be reunited with her owner after spending nearly 10 months traveling thousands of miles with a hitchhiker who rescued her from the rain. The feline adventure started in Portland, OR, when the cat’s owner, Ron Buss, let her out of the house on Sept. 1. The cat, white with patches of dark gray, usually left for no more than a couple of hours at a time, but this time she didn’t return. When Michael King, who has been homeless since 2003, spotted Mata Hairi, she was crouched under a table at a cafe, trying to stay out of the pouring rain. “I see cats all the time,”

King said. “I don’t pick up cats. I don’t want a cat, especially a full-grown one. And he definitely didn’t want to haul around the needed food and bowls that would add 20 pounds to his pack. “Something told me to grab her. I don’t know,” King told the Independent Record. He named the cat Tabor, for the cafe where he found her. She traveled with King as he hitchhiked to California, back to Portland and out to Montana, where King’s foster father lives. People often stopped them and asked to take photos. “She’s a hit on the streets of Portland,” King

said. “Very rarely do you see a cat riding on the top of someone’s backpack.” King and his foster father, Walter Ebert, recently took the cat to a veterinarian in Helena, where a scan found a microchip, and the vet was able to contact Buss. Buss is planning a party marking Mata’s return, and King agrees it’s an occasion for celebration. But it’s going to be emotional for King, too. “I didn’t want a cat in the first place. I just thought I was saving someone’s cat,” King said. “And that’s what I’ve done. Now I’ve grown attached to her. “My pack will be 20 pounds lighter,” he said, “but a big hole, a big hole.”

ly unknown a decade ago. When it comes to writing apps, Brichter is strictly an Apple guy. After all, he used to work for that company before striking out on his own — as a member of the team that created graphic “stack” software for the original iPhone that came out in 2007. He operates out of a small home office with a Macintosh workstation and a Star Wars clock on the wall behind it. The office is on the second floor of a redbrick rowhouse where he lives with his wife, Jean Whitehead, who is getting a master’s degree in food science at Drexel University. The couple moved here because her family lives in the area. The two met at Tufts University, from which Brichter graduated in 2006 with a degree in electrical engineering — though he almost left early to start working for Apple. His father, a contractor, and mother, a restaurant owner, had different ideas. “My family convinced me to finish,” he said.

The name of his company is atebits (www.atebits.com), a techie play on words. Eight is the number of bits of digital information in a byte, and it also is the same sound as “ate,” as in eating. Or taking a “byte.” “It’s kind of a geeky joke,” Brichter admitted. Letterpress, his word game, is sort of a cross between Boggle and Othello. As with many iPhone apps, a scaled-down, teaser version is free; a version that lets you play multiple games at once is $1.99. Brichter’s overriding philosophy is to make interactions with iPhones simple and intuitive. With the pull-to-refresh gesture, “it’s almost like you’re pulling those new tweets in from wherever they’re coming from,” he said. Other industry standards have emerged. In many apps, for example, when moving images on the screen come to rest, they “bounce.” “Everything that appears on the screen should have some physical basis,” Brichter said. “Everything is physics-based.”

There are two flavors of people who create apps: the designers who decide how things look and feel, and the programmers who write the code that makes it happen. Usually people are better at one skill than the other. Not Brichter, say his peers. “He’s really a master at both,” said Michael Simmons, cofounder of California-based Flexibits, which developed a popular calendar app called Fantastical. It began, as so many tech careers do, with a childhood fascination with Legos. By the time he was in public junior high school in New York City, Brichter was programming with a language called Logo. His primary goal is making creative things that excite others. He was flattered by the “high priest” nickname, but is quick to say there is a lot of talent out there. “I feel very lucky, being in the position now where I can devote most of my time to making stuff,” he said. “Hopefully stuff that inspires other people.”

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Smart irrigation is becoming a hot landscaping specialty as groundwater aquifers are increasingly sucked dry. Thirsty lawns, energy production, and expanding ‘wet’ industries like hydraulic fracture mining and farm irrigation are vying for water resources, leading to tougher watering restrictions and higher prices. “The EPA is moving from encouragement to enforcement on the municipal, commercial level,” said Jeff Gibson, landscape business manager for Ball Horticultural Co. in West Chicago, IL. “Many new municipal ordinances in the country dictate the types of ‘heads’ (low pressure, low volume sprinklers, typically) that may be used with new installations.” Numerous states and some municipalities also are starting to offer tax

incentives for installing low-water-use irrigation systems, Gibson said. Water shortages already impact every continent, according to the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs. “Around 1.2 billion people, or almost one-fifth of the world’s population, live in areas of physical scarcity, and 500 million people are approaching this situation.” Depleted water supplies are both a natural and human-made phenomenon, the agency says. “There is enough freshwater on the planet for six billion people but it is distributed unevenly and too much of it is wasted, polluted or unsustainably managed.” Planet, the national landscape industry association, lists five strategies for smarter watering: • Making your soil healthier. Break up and amend the soil 12 to 18 inches deep so plant

roots can penetrate deeper. “The most important thing in landscaping is soil preparation and choosing plants suited to the micro-climate where they’re going,” said Kurt Bland, a Planet spokesman and president of Bland Landscaping Co. in Apex, N.C. • Grouping plants with similar water needs together. “Doing so will create less stress on the plants, which will help

keep them disease-free under low water conditions,” the trade association says. • Choosing the right grasses for lawns. “Turf grass is incredibly resilient and genetically geared to go dormant in drought conditions,” a Planet handout says. “Ask a professional for what drought tolerant species will do well in your lawn based on sun exposure and soil type.”

• Creating an irrigation plan that includes reclaimed water and lowconsumption drip systems. “Drip irrigation, while saving water, can increase vegetable yields and plant growth,” said Robert Kourik, author of ‘Drip Irrigation for Every Landscape and All Climates’ (Metamorphic Press, 2009.) “The improper use of irrigation creates a too-wet and toodry cycle. This adds more

stress to the roots and less-than-ideal growth. Drip irrigation promotes the best growth possible.” • Mulching, which retains moisture, smothers weeds and adds nutrients to the soil. “Water rates as they increase are getting people’s attention,” Bland said. “Ordinances requiring monitors limiting how much water can be used also seem to be working.”

Keep your kids safe at home Each year millions of children are brought into emergency rooms across the country due to injuries, many of which occur at home. With many kids home from school this summer, now is a great time to brush up on the main causes of injuries to children, and more importantly, how you can prevent them. Use these tips compiled by USA.gov to get a head start: You can childproof your

home with multiple devices to keep your kids safe around the house. Window guards keep kids from falling in case they open a window when you’re not in the room. Outlet covers and plates keep kids from sticking their fingers and other objects into electrical outlets. And door knob covers and locks keep kids out of rooms that may be dangerous for them. The Consumer Product Safety

Commission provides even more tips and guidelines for childproofing your home. While a bottle of pills may seem like a rattle to young children, what is inside can sometimes be life threatening to kids. Remember to keep medicines and toxic products, such as cleaning supplies, locked up and out of reach of children. Make sure to read all the labels and warnings before giving your kids any medicines, so you get the dosage right. And as a precaution, have the nationwide poison control center phone number handy: 800-222-1222. With kids out of school for the summer, neighborhood sports and games can pick up at any minute. Don’t forget that

the kids should wear a helmet even if it is just a friendly game of softball, or if they’re taking a quick bike ride down the street. Encourage your kids to keep their safety gear on, and be a good example by also wearing helmets and padding when needed. As the summer temperatures rise, make sure to keep an eye on the thermostat in case it gets too hot for outdoor games. Staying cool is fun for most kids during a hot summer, especially when a pool, lake or ocean are nearby. Make sure you or someone else supervising the kids knows CPR; and when out in natural bodies of water, it is important to remember the life jackets, even if the kids say they’re uncomfortable.

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• THE COUNTRY EDITOR • July 3, 2013

by Dean Fosdick, Associated Press

Page 17

Saving water: 5 steps to smarter irrigating


Page 18 July 3, 2013 • THE COUNTRY EDITOR •

Quadriplegic woman draws with her mouth by George Morris DENHAM SPRINGS, LA — Donna Bell doesn’t remember what happened to the car she was riding in on Jan. 28, 1979. She just recalls regaining consciousness in a hospital, being told she’d been in a wreck and asked to wiggle her toes. And having the question repeated. “I thought I was,” she said. But she wasn’t. She couldn’t. She was 15. “Ignorance is bliss,” Bell said. “A doctor came in and said, ‘You’re paralyzed.’ I was, like, ‘When can I get up?’ I don’t know what he said after that, but I remember I

just wanted to get up.” Bell has never moved anything below her neck since that day. Yet she discovered an ability she didn’t know she had. Holding a pencil in her mouth, Bell taught herself to draw. Cartoon characters, portraits, reproducing photos, creating images in her mind, simple, complex — Bell’s images cover the waterfront. “Anything I could see I would draw,” Bell said. “It came to me so easily that I was scared I was going to lose it. I was, like, draw-draw-draw. That’s all I did, and I enjoyed it. It took up my time, and I wasn’t so bored. Now, I’ve got three albums full, and

a lot I gave away.” Bell was living in Vidalia when a Datsun B210 driven by her older sister, Kay, on Louisiana Highway 1 south of Simmesport left the road and struck a tree. Donna Bell was the only person seriously injured. She was taken to a hospital in New Roads, then to Our Lady of the Lake Regional Medical Center in Baton Rouge. When Teressa Bell arrived, her daughter was lying unconscious on her stomach in a bed with an opening for her face. Pieces of auto glass were in her hair. They would soon get the bad news that she had broken her neck at the C3-C4 vertebra, and that her paralysis was permanent. After spending time at a rehabilitation facility in Jackson, MS, Bell and her family moved to Denham Springs to be closer to another older sister, Glenda. Out of boredom, Bell started practicing writing her name. It was seven years after the accident that she first tried to go beyond that. “It was my friend’s birthday, and I drew a frog with balloons,” she

said. “Everybody said, ‘Where did you see it?’ I just made it up. That’s when I started drawing.” Virtually all of it has been for her own pleasure, or for friends. Bell has sold only one drawing. Bell’s accident happened the same year that a movie was made about Joni Eareckson Tada, who became a quadriplegic after breaking her neck while diving in 1967, then learned to draw and paint using her mouth. She had already written two books and begun a Christian ministry for those with disabilities. “As soon as I broke my neck, people brought me books. I read her story,” Bell said. “Where we’re different is she painted before her accident. I think I recall this right that when she was in therapy, they asked, ‘What did you do before?’ She said she liked to paint, and they said you could still paint, but in other ways, so she started painting with her mouth. “I think I have it right that her words are, ‘If you have it in you, it will come out somewhere, a talent.’

I remember those words. But I didn’t draw at all until I broke my neck.” Bell’s brother, Hank, is a mechanical engineer. He made a drawing stand with push-button electrical controls that she can maneuver to her liking. Her mother sets out pencils and brushes so that she can select what she wants. Bell pushes the control buttons with a pencil with putty covering the point end, which she also uses to answer the telephone or use the computer. “You can show her something, or tell her what you want and she’ll think about it,” Teressa Bell said. “I’ll put her colors up, put a lot of pencils. I can go outside and start mowing and mow for half a day and when I come in she’s through with something.” Being through doesn’t always mean being satisfied. If the image on paper doesn’t match the image she has in her mind, Bell discards it. “If she gets it and it’s beautiful, and I think that’s the most beautiful thing I’ve seen, if there’s something about it that

didn’t hit her just right, she’ll draw her name on it and draw little doodles on it and start over,” her mother said. Although Bell has a powered drawing stand, she said she has never had a powered wheelchair or a vehicle with a powered wheelchair lift — the latter being more important, since she could not transport a powered wheelchair away from her home without it. A fundraising website for this purpose has been set up at www.gofundme.com/Don naBell . Before the accident, Bell had started to learn how to crochet, but had not advanced beyond making a crochet chain. After learning to draw, she told her father she wanted to try again. “He said, ‘Oh, you can’t do that.’ I said, ‘I think I can,”’ she said. Using crocheting books, Bell learned the techniques well enough to produce some small items. “My dad was pretty impressed,” Bell said. Don Bell Sr. died in 2006.

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by Nelson Hicks

so there’s a lot of people that come to Little St. Simons to see the birds,” Naturalist Laura Early said. One of the most popular spots to see the birds on the island is the rookery. Hundreds of birds gather around a freshwater pond as they lay their eggs and nurse their young. Alligators lurk in the waters below. The alligators protect the birds from other predators, like raccoons. And from time to time, some of the baby birds get pushed out of the nest and provide a meal for the alligators. And while the rookery is a great locale to hang out and watch the wildlife, it’s far from the only hotspot on the island for a close encounter. Armadillos can be spotted around every turn; our cameras spotted a family of baby alligators trying to survive and a bald eagle chick learning to fly. “We’ve seen alligators, we’ve seen several different types of hawks (and) seen a bald eagle; things I would never be able to find on my own,” guest Jonathan Lindman said. And Lindman didn’t have to find any of them on his own, thanks to the naturalists on Little St. Simons. The island prides itself on providing

guests with unique and absorbing experiences in the company of the experienced and gifted naturalist staff. And it’s those experiences that a trip here revolves around, the trips with naturalists and food, more on food in a minute. The staff typically offers several different exploration trips a day that bring the island to life. “One of the things I love about being a naturalist here is that the people I work with are so excited and so knowledgeable about this stuff that it’s great to work with them and continually learn and have everyone share that passion with everyone that comes here,” Early said. “I think it’s one of the things that the guests enjoy is being able to add a little bit of education to their vacation experience.” It’s the outdoor adventures and experiences that people visit Little St. Simons for. There is a beach here, and it’s certainly available for use, but if simply sitting on a beach all day everyday is what people are looking in a vacation, that misses what Little St. Simons specializes in. A visit to Little St. Simons is all about nature, wildlife and food. “We’re hands on,” Chef

Paula Garrett said. “We create it, we create the dish, we create the recipe. It’s not that you can just come up and get the recipe because a lot of times, it’s in our head, it’s in our heart and we’re constantly changing that.” Chefs Paula Garrett and Matthew Raiford team up to create some amazing dishes. Duck was on the menu one night. “We have a braised duck that we do here,” Chef Matthew Raiford said. “We make our own duck spice here on the island and then we take that duck spice along with the vegetable stock and a little Cabernet and slow cook it for about three hours. We add apricots, blueberries and blackberries to that poaching liquid so it gives the duck a very fruity taste.” A USDA-certified organic garden on the island provides the chefs with plenty of food and spices to incorporate into the meals. “We harvest something fresh everyday and it changes,” Gardener Amy Schuster-Hagan said. “So the chefs here are very creative on what they can use from the garden and it always affects every meal every day, what’s the freshest.”

Rates start around $500 per night, but that includes accommodations, three daily meals, all drinks, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, unlimited use of island activities and recreation gear, tours with naturalists and the boat transfers to and from the island. “It was worth every penny of the trip,” Guest Ingrid Richardson said. “And it gave (my husband) and me a time to be outdoors. It was relaxing, rejuvenating and restorative.” “It’s hard to explain if you haven’t been here,” Guest Kim Holiday said. “You can see it, you can look at it, but until you actually get here and have the experience, I think it’s a little difficult to explain. Me, personally, I think it’s better than Disney World. I love it. I’ll be back. It’s a really fantastic place.”

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• THE COUNTRY EDITOR • July 3, 2013

LITTLE ST. SIMONS ISLAND, GA — Ten thousand intrusion-free acres of maritime forests and marshlands, seven miles of shell-strewn beaches, this extraordinary natural sanctuary — among the last of its kind anywhere — is how Little St. Simons Island welcomes guests to this virtually untouched island. Little St. Simons Island is on the Georgia coast, one of the state’s barrier islands. And although it shares a name with its larger counterpart, St. Simons Island, that’s where the similarities between the two end. “It’s very different from the normal St. Simons experience,” Little St. Simons Island guest Joel Richardson said. “(St. Simons) is much more commercial, certainly it’s beautiful with lots of the beach and everything, but this is much more laid back, much more personal experience than what you would experience on St. Simons.” That personal experience actually does start on St. Simons. That’s because Little St. Simons can only be reached by boat. Although the ferry ride from St. Simons to Little St. Simons is only a few miles, the short trip transports guests to

a world away. “I’ve never been on a private island before where only 32 people can come and stay and so, it’s been wonderful,” guest Kimberly Lindman said. “One night, (my husband and I) went out and explored on our own and we were out in the middle of nowhere, with no one around us, just the two of us.” Thirty-two people is the maximum number of guests allowed to spend the night on Little St. Simons. Some nights, there are far fewer. There’s a main lodge that serves as a gathering place for meals with a couple of guest rooms in it. There are several other cottages tucked among the oaks around it. There are no televisions or phones in guest rooms. “It’s like stepping back in time,” Richardson said. “We went on a ride this morning out into the woods. It was like going into Jurassic Park. It was almost truly prehistoric.” Guests won’t find any dinosaurs roaming the maritime forests, marshes or any of the other habitats on the island, but visitors will find a plethora of wildlife. Birds top the list. “We’re right in the middle of the Atlantic flyway,

Page 19

Trip to Georgia island like stepping back in time


Page 20 July 3, 2013 • THE COUNTRY EDITOR •

Country Editor

Number / Classification 20 Air Compressors 25 Air Tools 35 Announcements 45 Antiques 55 Appraisal Services 75 ATV 80 Auctions 82 Auto Body 110 Bedding Plants 120 Bees-Beekeeping 130 Bird Control 140 Books 155 Building Materials/ Supplies 157 Building Repair 160 Buildings For Sale 161 Bulk Foods / Spices 165 Business Opportunities 170 Butchering Supplies 173 Carpentry 175 Cars, Trucks, Trailers 180 Catalogs 182 Catering 190 Chain Saws 195 Cheesemaking Supplies 205 Christmas 214 Clocks & Repair 215 Collectibles 216 Clothing 235 Computers 253 Consignment 265 Construction Equipment For Rent 275 Construction Machinery Wanted 277 Construction Services 280 Construction Supplies 312 Crafts 325 Custom Butchering 330 Custom Services 360 Deer-Butchering & Hides 370 Dogs 410 Electrical 415 Employment Wanted 440 Farm Machinery For Sale 445 Farm Machinery Wanted 447 Farm Market Items 460 Fencing 470 Financial Services 480 Fish 483 Flooring 495 For Rent or Lease 500 For Sale 510 Fresh Produce, Nursery 525 Fruits & Berries 527 Furniture 529 Garage Sales 530 Garden Supplies 535 Generators 537 Gifts 575 Greenhouse Supplies 585 Guns 587 Hair Styling 589 Hardware 600 Health Care/Products 605 Heating 610 Help Wanted 653 Hotel / Motel 683 Jewelers 700 Lawn & Garden 711 Lessons 760 Lumber & Wood Products 790 Maple Syrup Supplies 805 Miscellaneous 810 Mobile Homes 811 Monuments 812 Multi Media 813 Music 815 Motorcycles 817 Nails 820 Nurseries 910 Plants 950 Real Estate For Sale 955 Real Estate Wanted 960 RVs & Motor Homes 975 Rentals 980 Restaurant Supplies 1040 Services Offered 1075 Snowblowers 1080 Snowmobiles 1096 Sports 1109 Thrift 1140 Trailers 1147 Trains 1148 Travel 1165 Trees 1170 Truck Parts & Equipment 1180 Trucks 1187 Vacuum 1190 Vegetable 1200 Veterinary 1205 Wanted

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ADVERTISERS Get the best responses from your advertisements by including the age, condition, price and best calling hours. Also, we always recommend insertion for at least 2 issues for maximum benefits. DEADLINE for placing ads is FRIDAY prior to edition date. Call Peg at 1-800-836-2888 or 518-673-0111 CHECK YOUR AD - ADVERTISERS should check their

ads on the first week of insertion. Lee Publications, Inc. shall not be liable for typographical, or errors in publication except to the extent of the cost of the first weeks insertion of the ad, and shall also not be liable for damages due to failure to publish an ad. Adjustment for errors is limited to the cost of that portion of the ad wherein the error occurred. Report any errors to 800836-2888

PHOTO ENLARGEMENTS 8x10 - $2.00 • 11x17 - $5.00 • 12x18 or 13x19 - $7.00. Come see us at Lee Publications, 6113 State Rt. 5, Palatine Bridge, NY 13428 518-673-3237

Appliances WANTED: OLD FASHIONED washing machine and tubs in good working condition. Call 1-518-779-3959. MOVING: Kenmore portable dishwasher, Black, like new, $125.00; Kenmore 18c.f. refrigerator, White, excellent condition, $75.00. 315-8941319

ATV 2011 CAN AM XTP, fully loaded, heated hand grips front & rear, 27” tires, power steering, snorkle kit, over $15,000 invested, $10,500 OBO. 315-868-7197

Building Materials/Supplies INSULATION: All Types. New/ Existing Buildings. Free Estimates. Fully Insured. Call Upstate Spray Foam Insulation 315-822-5238. www.upstatesprayfoam.com

Cars, Trucks, Trailers 1996 BUICK PARK AVE, 142,600 miles, White/ Blue, runs good, looks good, asking $1,195.00 Call 315-868-4047 leave message. 1998 TOYOTA CAMARY V6, 127,000 miles, well maintained car, $3,200. Call 315895-0156 2002 HONDA ACCORD LX, 87,000 miles, nice car, asking $5,800. 315-542-0734

2003 CHEVY 1500 cargo van, V-6 auto, 148K, no rust, runs 100%. $2,900. 315894-4411 2007 FORD FREESTAR mini-van, V-6, automatic, DVD/loaded, 70,000 miles. Asking $7,100. 315-8944411.

Collectibles RECORDS WANTED: We’ll buy your old records from 1930- 1970. 45’s, 78’s, Albums, Rock-N-Roll, Blues, R&B, Country, etc. Call Pete 518-673-2384. WANTED - CA$H PAID: For old jewelry, books. Dolls toys, even if broken, 1970s older. 1960s & older: Clothing. Old frames, Christmas, Halloween items. Interested in almost anything old. Shirley 315-8949032.

Custom Services FRAN’S PAINTING & STAINING. Lead Certified. Spray or brush. Free estimates. 315717-2061

PO Box 121, 6113 State Hwy. 5 Palatine Bridge, NY 13428 800-836-2888 • Fax: 518-673-2381

classified@leepub.com Farm Market Items

For Sale

Real Estate For Sale

DAMIN FARM

SUMMER LONG SALE:

FAIRFIELD, SR. 169: New Home, small lot, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths. $147,000. Bruce Ward RE. Call David Dudgeon 315-866-7578.

Home Raised BEEF

MAPLE SYRUP DUNCRAVEN MILK 2 Kinds of SAUERKRAUT

Jams - Jellies - Popcorn SATURDAYS at Oneida County Public Markets in Union Station SNAP Benefit Cards Accepted 2 Miles West of St. Johnsville

518-568-2643

Something for Everyone. Tools, car hauler, ‘78 Chevy Malibu, toys, knick knacks, collectors items, 1970 Harley Davidson 100cc. 191 Spring Street, Fort Plain (off Route 80)

Fruits & Berries BEV’s BEST BERRIES U-PIC FARM: Senior discount. Call before you come for availability and picking days & times. 315-429-9425

For Rent or Lease Furniture 1+ BEDROOM Apartment in renovated historic building, $450/mo. +heat & electric, walk to town. 315-867-9791 DOLGEVILLE: Apartment For Rent, 2 bedroom, security & references required, $395/mo. Please call 315-868-3939 or 518-568-2776 FOR RENT: HERKIMER 2 apartments, both on first floor, 1 bedroom & 2 bedroom: both w/washer & dryers/stoves & refrigerators, off street parking: take a visual tour www.crossettres.com. Applications available, smoke free property, no pet policy. 315894-8557.

TWO BEDROOM ILION upstairs, private parking, $450/month plus security and utilities. 315-894-4411 LITTLE FALLS: Upstairs 1bd. apt. Livingroom, kitchen, bath, appliances, redecorated. References, security deposit. 315-823-1156

For Sale ALL NEW IN BOXES: Dining Table & 6 Chairs. Must Sell, $475.00/firm. Call 315-2256673 CEMENT Dutch boy/girl lawn ornament $25.00, octagonal glass patio table $25.00, couch $25.00. 315-826-7545 FOR SALE: ‘94 Dodge Ram Van 190 Horizon High Top, 360 motor, runs great, very little rust. Also Beds, sink, toilet - trade for 4 wheeler. 518-8533921

NEED BUSINESS CARDS? Full color glossy, heavy stock. 250 ($45.00); 500 ($60.00); 1,000 ($75.00). Call Beth at Lee Publications 518-673-0101 or bsnyder@leepub.com PIANO, full upright, Estey New York with bench, needs tuning and some keys worn, $300; Spinning Wheel, large antique, American, $250; Smith Corona Vantage electric typewriter with case, $225; Punch Bag, canvas, 80#with hooks, $40.00. 315-866-9715

AWESOME DEAL: Queen Plush Mattress Set. New in plastic. Must sell, $150.00. Call 315-225-6673 CINNAMON CHERRY bedroom set. New in boxes, $290.00. Must sell. Call 315225-6673 RATTAN DINETTE, glass top table, 2 straight chairs, 2 arm chairs, was $799, now $250. Call 315-985-9002

Legal Services BANKRUPTCY, Uncontested Divorce. Attorney Fees $425.00. Licensed Attorney To Handle Your Case. Call Richard Kaplan 315-724-1850

FOR SALE: JOHNSON RD. Town of Schuyler: Vacant land with drilled well - 11+ acres. www.crossettres.com. 315894-8557. FOR SALE: VILLAGE OF Middleville: Single family home on double lot with detached 2 stall garage. Asking price: $49,000. (Curable functional obsolescence) Exterior visual tour www.crossettres.com. 315-894-8557 FRANKFORT: ACME RD. Level building lot, commercial zoning, $32,500. Bruce Ward & Company. Call Cathy Baker, 315-866-1817. HERKIMER: SPECIAL opportunity for wise investor. Historic 5 unit Colonial. $185,900. Bruce Ward & Company. Call Cathy Baker 315-866-1817. HOUSE FOR SALE: EAST Herkimer, kitchen, living, dining & family rooms, 4BR, central air, gas heat, 3/4 acre. Call 315-866-3813.

A

Magnets BUSINESS CARD MAGNETS only $75.00 for 250. Free Shipping. Call Beth at Lee Publications 518-673-0101 or bsnyder@leepub.com Please allow 7-10 business days for delivery

Miscellaneous FORMICA COUNTER TOPS, Furniture Repair & Reglueing. Duda Woodworking & Chair Hospital. 734 Lafayette St., Utica,NY 315-733-4715

is a Thousand

MICRO FIBER SOFA: Brand New, never used, Chocolate, $290.00. Call 315-225-6673

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2007 HARLEY DAVIDSON 1200 XL Custom Vance & Hines Pipes, Vance & Hines Fuel Pak, Stage 1 EFI Kit, Black, 8,500 Miles, $7,500. Excellent Condition! 518378-3279

For Information Call

FOR SALE: 2000 LS Suzuki Savage, 11,000 miles, leather saddle bags, color green, excellent condition. 518-573-7468, 518-5732969. Or trade for 4 wheeler or snowmobile.

800-836-2888


1991 SUN VOYAGER Class A motor home, Onan generator, 15,000 miles, new tires, heated mirrors, ice maker, needs some work, $8,500 OBO. 315868-7197

Services Offered PHOTO CALENDARS now available right here at Lee Publications. 6113 State Hwy. 5, Palatine Bridge, NY 518-673-3237. Choose up to 24 photos. Only $12.00 for digital photos and $15.00 if we scan them. TED’s PAINTING and Home Repairs, Residential and Commercial, Interior and Exterior. Summer Specials on all single family homes and decks. Call TED at 315-4293253

Tires & Tire Repair Service USED TIRE SALE: Huge Inventory, mounting & balancing FREE. No appointment necessary! Save money call Auto World, 534 North Perry Street, Johnstown 12095 518762-7555

Tractors MASSEY FERGUSON 65 tractor/ backhoe with front end loader and extra rims, $4,000 or best offer. Dan 518-706-0249

Calendar of Events COUNTRY EDITOR NOTE: Calendar entries must arrive at the Country Editor’s office by the Friday prior to our Wednesday publication date for them to be included in the calendar of events. Send events to Lee Publications c/o Country Editor, 6113 State Highway 5, P.O. Box 121, Palatine Bridge, NY 13428 or e-mail: kkelly@leepub.com. JUN 28 - SEP 3 “Betsy” Concert Series Lock 20 Canal Park, Rte. 49, Marcy, NY. • July 5: 6:30 pm - Country Traditions with The Streators • July 12: 6:30 pm - The Clef Dwellers w/Don Cantwell featuring TJ Howard • July 19: 6:30 pm - Dharma Burns String Band • July 20: 6:30 pm - Pick’n EZ • July 26: 6:30 pm - Old Country Music featuring the Nelson Brothers • Aug. 2: 6:30 pm - Diamond Some Day w/Ed Vancott • Aug. 9: 6:30 pm - Holidaye • Aug. 16: 6:30 pm - Mardi Gras Five w/TJ Howard • Aug. 17: 6:30 pm - The Roots of Rock & Roll • Aug. 23: 6 pm - The Trinkaus Manor Quartet w/George Staley • Aug. 24: 6 pm - Double Image • Aug. 30: 6 pm - Country Gospel w/Julian & Bonnie George • Aug. 31: 6 pm - The Mark Bolos Band • Sep. 3: 1 pm Floyd Community Band, 3 pm Irish Day at Lock 20 featuring the Johnston School of Irish Dancing and the Butler Sheehan Academy, The Big Band sound of Easy Money and Koltis plus a fireworks extravaganza at dusk. All events are free. Bring your own blankets and/or lawn chairs. JUL 6 Chicken BBQ, Strawberry Fest, Garage Sale & Cow Plop Bingo German Flatts Town Park, Rte. 5S, between Mohawk & Little Falls, NY (Near the historic Fort Herkimer Church). Chicken BBQ from noon until sold out. $8 Strawberry Fest from noon to 4 pm. $3.

Cow Plop bings. Square can be purchased at the town office on Main St. in Mohawk. Contact Town Clerk, 315-866-1370. JUL 13 Ilion Days Village Wide Garage Sales 9 am - 4 pm. Listings with a map are available for $1 in front of the Ilion Municipal Bldg., Morgan St., Ilion from 9 am to noon on day of sale. JUL 14 Ilion Days: Princess Pageant Municipal Bldg., Ilion, NY. 35 pm. JUL 15-19 Christian Lake Bible Conference 355 Perkins Mill Rd., Stratford NY. Pastor Mark Kelly of Faith Bible Church and Academy of Carlisle, NY will be the guest speaker. Services start at 7:45 Mon. - Fri evenings. Also, there may be Bible classes Tues. - Fri. at 9 am. Please check with the office for more information. Drive-ins welcome at either time and are open to the public. Included as well are a campground, beach, boats, fishing and cabins available for public use (cabins need reservations). A large building with kitchen facilities is available,”The Prodigal’s Refuge,” for use by church groups during the season. A bonfire is planned for every Friday night after the evening message in front of the “Refuge” building. For a brochure listing speakers, events, rules and regulations, call 315-429-3659; by mail: Christian Lake, 355 Perkins Mill Rd., Stratford, NY, 13470 or at www. christianlakebibleconference.com JUL 19 27th Annual Doo-Dah Parade Floats, bands and everything in between. Route avaiable at iliondoodah.com After the parade, at Central Plaza there is the Friday Nite Block Party with Johnson & Co., food, vendors and more from 8-11 pm. JUL 20 Ilion Days lIion, NY. Many events scheduled starting with a 5K Run/Walk followed by Family Fun at Central Plaza which includes a craft fair, dog show, food, face painting, Minute to Win It Games and more. Events start at 8 am until 3pm. At 6 pm at Whalen Park, DJ Timeless Tunes will play preceding the fireworks at 9 pm.

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JUL 21 Ilion Days Car Show lIion, NY. Car Show at London Towers from 11:30 am to 3:30 pm. AUG 24 Fifth Annual Reign Fest: NY Dolgeville Central School auditorium, 38 Slawson St., Dolgeville, NY. 2-10 pm. Grammy nominated “The Rhett Walker Band” headlines this year’s amazing lineup, that includes hot new artist “All Things New,” ReignFest mainstay “Everyday Sunday” with special guest “Grant Woell,” along with Christian rock bands “Kardia,” “Life Band,” “Deeper Still” and the “New Hope Worship Team.” The event’s guest speaker will be Pastor Dave Hayner. Tickets are $15 in advance and $17 at the door. Group pricing is available. For tickets and information, call 315-8685815 or e-mail bobby@ rkpsportinggoods.com You can also follow ReignFest: NY on facebook. SEP 5 Rabies Clinic Salisbury Fire Dept., 2549 St. Rt. 29, Salisbury Center, NY. 6-7:30 pm. All cats, dogs & ferrets 3 months old or older must be vaccinated

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even if they stay indoors. Bring proof of the pet’s vaccination history to receive a 3 year certificate. Dogs should be on a leash, cats & ferrets in a carrier. No exams will be given. Owners are responsible to clean up after their animals. $5 donation per pet is suggested to defray cost. Pre-register online. Contact Herkimer County Public Health, 315-867-1176. On net at www.herkimercounty. org SEP 12 Rabies Clinic Cedarville Fire Dept., 960 St. Rt. 51, Cedarville, NY. 67:30 pm. All cats, dogs & ferrets 3 months old or older must be vaccinated even if they stay indoors. Bring proof of the pet’s vaccination history to receive a 3 year certificate. Dogs should be on a leash, cats & ferrets in a carrier. No exams will be given. Owners are responsible to clean up after their animals. $5 donation per pet is suggested to defray cost. Pre-register online. Contact Herkimer County Public Health, 315-867-1176. On net at www.herkimercounty. org OCT 3 Rabies Clinic Little Falls Town Garage,

478 Flint Ave. Ext., Little Falls, NY. 6-7:30 pm. All cats, dogs & ferrets 3 months old or older must be vaccinated even if they stay indoors. Bring proof of the pet’s vaccination history to receive a 3 year certificate. Dogs should be on a leash, cats & ferrets in a carrier. No exams will be given. Owners are responsible to clean up after their animals. $5 donation per pet is suggested to defray cost. Pre-register online. Contact Herkimer County Public Health, 315867-1176. On net at www.herkimercounty.org OCT 24 Rabies Clinic East Herkimer Fire Dept., 193 Main Rd., East Herkimer, NY. 6-7:30 pm. All cats, dogs & ferrets 3 months old or older must be vaccinated even if they stay indoors. Bring proof of the pet’s vaccination history to receive a 3 year certificate. Dogs should be on a leash, cats & ferrets in a carrier. No exams will be given. Owners are responsible to clean up after their animals. $5 donation per pet is suggested to defray cost. Pre-register online. Contact Herkimer County Public Health, 315867-1176. On net at www. herkimercounty.org

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Page 22 July 3, 2013 • THE COUNTRY EDITOR •

July 4th pet safety tips The Fourth of July is one of the most stressful and potentially dangerous times of the year for pets. While you and your family, friends, and neighbors are celebrating the holiday with fireworks, pets are finding these festive activities anything but

celebratory. Many pet parents assume that if their pet is not afraid of thunder or other loud noises, they will not be bothered by fireworks. This is not necessarily true. Even pets who normally are not bothered by thunder and other loud noises are often frightened and panicked by the cumulative

effects of the fireworks, the excited voices outside, and being left alone inside the house. If pets are left outside and unattended, the noise and raucous often drives them to run away. In fact, the July 4th holiday is a very busy time for

animal shelters across the U.S. They report taking in a higher number dogs that run off during firework festivities. In addition, many police stations log higher volumes of stray dog calls and barking complaints on July 4th compared to any other day of the year. By planning ahead and taking some common

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sense precautions, you can help ensure your pet is happy and safe this Fourth of July. • Do not take your pet to fireworks displays. • Do not leave your pet alone in the car. With only hot air to breathe inside a car, your pet can suffer serious health effects even death in a few short minutes. Partially opened windows do not provide sufficient air, but they do provide an opportunity for your pet to be stolen. However, if your pet is most comfortable in the car, some pet parents find that driving around with their pet in the car helps to calm their pet. • Keep your pets in your home in a comfortable and quiet area with the shades drawn. If your pet

is crate trained, then their crate is a great choice. Some animals can become destructive when frightened, so be sure that you’ve removed any items that your pet could destroy or that would be harmful to your pet if chewed. Leave a television or radio playing at normal volume to keep your pet company while you’re attending Fourth of July picnics, parades, and other celebrations. • If you know that your pet is seriously distressed by loud noises like thunder, consult with your veterinarian before July 4th for ways to help alleviate the fear and anxiety he or she will experience during fireworks displays. • If your pet seeks comfort in a bath tub, under a

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death. • Make sure your pets are wearing identification tags so that if they do become lost, they can be returned promptly. Animals found running at-large should be taken to the local animal shelter, where they will have the best chance of being reunited with their owners. Here’s to you and your pet having a happy and safe Independence Day!

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bed or other small space...let them. Do not try to lure them out. If the space is safe and it makes them feel more secure, let them be. • Never leave pets outside unattended, even in a fenced yard or on a chain. In their fear, pets who normally wouldn’t leave the yard may escape and become lost, or become entangled in their chain, risking injury or

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situation, there is no clear-cut answer. There is no perfect home, and things that are acceptable to the current owner may not be acceptable to the buyer who is looking to become the next owner. The homebuying process is typically a careful cooperation

between buyer and seller to find a middle ground. The buyer may have to make some concessions, as will the seller. Ultimately, it is this cooperation that often determines if the sale goes through or is terminated. Before any negotiations can begin regarding re-

pairs, it is adviseable for a buyer to have an independent inspector come out and look over the home and property. Most real estate agents will suggest this be done as a first priority — even before a contract is entered on the home. An inspection will unveil any po-

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tential problems in a home and indicate things that the buyer may not be aware of, including items that do not meet with code or could be unsafe. An inspector also may point out problems that could cause a mortgage lender to give pause. This may mean the lender will deem problems unsafe and refuse to fund the mortgage until repairs are made. A copy of this inspection report should be sent to the home seller to review with his or her attorney and real estate agent. The buyer working with his own real estate attorney and agent can petition for certain repairs to be made. Many sellers will make such repairs to ensure the purchase goes through, or they will accept a lower purchase price to compensate for the needed repairs, which the buyer will then make. Buyers might want to hire a good real estate attorney to write clauses into the contract to protect their interests. This allows the buyer to forfeit the sale and walk away

bank-owned home) are responsible for the repairs. Generally speaking, most short sales and foreclosures are sold “as is” and may even specify that repairs and requirements for the certificate of occupancy are the buyer’s responsibility. A buyer also can ask to have the home price reduced to cover the repairs. But foreclosures are often already deeply discounted. Buyers should know that, for a home that is not in foreclosure, there are some repairs that should ultimately be the responsibility of the seller. If these repairs are not made, a buyer should think strongly about walking away from the deal, according to Why6Percent.com, a real estate marketing site. Such repairs include: • lender-required repairs that could impact home safety • leaky pipes • water penetration issues, including a bad roof • unsafe decking or handrails • wet basements or crawl spaces

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Home buyers may be able to negotiate that sellers repair major structural issues, such as a leaky roof. If not, negotiate a lower sale price. from the contract should an issue arise. The rules often change when buying a home that is a short sale or in foreclosure. A home that is in distress is typically in this situation because the current owners cannot afford to pay their mortgage, and thusly, are not able to afford repairs. According to Think Glink, a money-management Web site, buyers may try to negotiate repairs with the seller, but they shouldn’t assume that sellers (or lenders in the event of a

• insecure foundations or obvious structural damage • poorly functioning sewer lines or septic system It is always adviseable for buyers to speak with a reliable real estate attorney and a trusted real estate agent to guide them through the process of buying a home. These people can help buyers navigate the important decisions that can affect the home they’ll be living in for the next several years.

• THE COUNTRY EDITOR • July 3, 2013

Many questions arise during the home-buying process. Buyers looking at homes that require a good deal of TLC may wonder who is responsible for the home’s repairs, particularly if such repairs are needed to secure a certificate of occupancy. Depending on the

Page 23

Who is responsible for repairs during a home sale?


Page 24 July 3, 2013 • THE COUNTRY EDITOR •

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The Country Editor 7.3.13  

The Country Editor July 3, 2013