Mohawk Valley Living 109 December 2022

Page 1

Lasting Gifts

When holiday shopping this season, be sure you don’t overlook local antique and co-op shops. I recently found some treasures at the Mohawk Val ley Community Market in Herkimer. In addition to some pretty gift boxes, I bought a beautiful, hand made wooden step that flips up into a chair for my granddaughter. It’s not new. It had a previous life unknown to me, which makes it even more special. Who knows how long she will have this little piece of furniture? Will she use it in her first kitchen some day to get to an out-of-reach shelf? Will she have a little girl of her own who uses it to reach the sink to brush her teeth?

Recently during our “bonus” summer in No vember (when my fall chores were done and proj ects stowed away until spring), I decided to take ad vantage of the 60 and 70-degree days to work on a project that never made it onto my “to-do” list. My husband helped me drag an old dresser from our son’s former room out into the yard. I decided to re finish it. After stripping the thick, old, blotchy stain, I prepped and refinished the wood, just like I remem ber my mother doing with her antique furniture finds when I was growing up. I stood back and admired the beautiful woodgrain revealed. Suddenly, a mem ory of shopping with my mom at an antique shop for a dresser for my first apartment popped into my head. As the shop owner helped us load the dresser into my dad’s Suburban, I recall her saying: “Some day you can refinish this and it will be a nice piece of furniture.”

After the final coat of polyurethane dried, my husband helped me carry the dresser back up to our newly dubbed “guest room.” As I looked at the pretty “new” dresser, I thought of my mom (I lost her almost 30 years ago), our three boys who grew up using the dresser, and even contemplated its unknown former owner. I thought; you were right, Mom. It only took me 35 years to realize the gift you gave me. •



Lance and Sharry Whitney


Sharry Whitney

DESIGN & LAYOUT Lance David Whitney

ASSISTANT EDITOR Shelley Malenowski


Peggy Spencer Behrendt, Carol Higgins, Suzie Jones, Melinda Karastury, Rebecca McLain, Matt Perry, Cynthia Quackenbush, Denise Szarek, Gary VanRiper

CONTACT US (315) 853-7133 30 Kellogg Street Clinton, NY 13323

Mohawk Valley Living is a monthly magazine and television show that explore the area’s arts, culture, and heritage.

Copyright © 2022. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the consent of Mohawk Valley Living, Inc.

watch mvl every sunday! 7:30am and 11pm on wfxv 11:30am on WUTR 20 contents Matt Perry’s Nature MV Gardens Restaurant Guide Antiques Guide Nature in December MV Astronomy Club MV Crossword Gallery Guide Oneida County History Center Adirondack Journal Tales from Shawangunk Valley Girl Adventures On The Farm with Suzie Advertiser Directory Contest Answers/Sponsor News 6 11 13 16 19 23 24 25 27 29 32 38 41 45 46 Mohawk Valley Living is brought to you by Steet-Ponte a u t o g r o u p Next Issue: January 1st Available exclusively from our sponsors.
Riggie is roaming around and hiding in the advertising areas of the magazine. Next to him you’ll find a letter. Find all the Riggies and rearrange the letters to answer this riddle. Enter by the 15th of the month to be entered in a $100 shopping spree at one of our advertisers! (Excluding media and banks) One entry per household per month. Mail to: Riggie’s Riddle, 30 Kellogg St., Clinton, NY 13323 or email: NOTE: Please enter Riggie’s Riddle and crossword puzzle in separate emails. Is it just an impossible Christmas dream, the hope of peace on Earth? This hope seemed within reach in 1914, A Christmas Eve pause for mirth. 2 words, 14 letters See the answer and winner to last month’s riddle on page 46!
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6 Mohawk Valley nature The Dance of Astrid & Ares Utica Peregrine Falcons’ 2022 Breeding Season, Part 2 story & photos by matt perry Ares shades while Astrid feeds the nestlings The nestlings get their dark masks Visit our cafe serving fresh sandwiches, salads, soups, real fruit smoothies and organic coffee!

By May 8th, it was clear there would be no more than two falcon chicks in the nest this season. The reason the other two eggs didn’t hatch would remain a mystery. Hav ing only two mouths to feed would be easier for the parents since they wouldn’t have to procure as much food. It would also be easier on our fledgewatch volunteers since, come fledging time, there would be only two birds to keep track of and potentially rescue.

The morning of May 8th was unseason ably warm, and it got hotter as the day went on. In mid afternoon, Ares acted as a para sol and shaded the chicks from the sun. At 5 o’clock, Astrid showed up with a meal taken from one of Ares’ pantry ledges on the State Office Building. We expected that Ares would leave once Astrid came in and start

ed the feeding, but that wasn’t the case. In fact, he stayed and contin ued to provide shade through the entire meal. One falcon shading while the other fed nestlings was new behavior for our pair. It wasn’t a fluke; the following afternoon, they repeated the behavior – Ares shaded while Astrid fed the nest lings. This was yet another exam ple of the extraordinary level of co operation between these two birds.

On May 11th, by 4pm, the tem perature had again surpassed 80 degrees. Once again, Ares shaded the chicks while Astrid doled out the meal. When the feeding was done, Astrid went into shading mode alongside her mate. A few minutes later, they had split the clutch. Ares shaded the eggs, while Astrid shaded the chicks. At one point she attempted to take over the entire shading enterprise, but Ares was immovable. She gave scolding vocalizations, but he held firm. Determined to have her way, she went under her mate, scooped up the clutch with her wing, and pulled them beneath her..

By May 25th, the nestlings’ appearances were changing. They were no longer uni formly white. They had developed dark eye masks, and a fringe of feather shafts had be gun to protrude from the ends of their tails

and edges of their wings. These were the be ginnings of flight feathers and a reminder to us that fledging time wasn’t far off. By this time, it was clear that we had one male and one female in the nest. Females are distin guished from males by their larger overall size, proportionately bigger feet, and thicker legs.

By May 27th, they had started exercising their wings and became more rambunctious. They bit each other’s tails and grabbed at everything with their feet. Increasingly, the nestlings became interested in what was hap pening outside of the nestbox. Their improv ing vision meant they could now track flying objects in the canyon. Both nestlings’ heads moved in sync as they watched their parents’ comings and goings, and they often reacted

shades the
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with squealing begging calls. On June 3rd, the young falcons received the names Kara and Percy, submitted to us via social media.

By June 4th, the nestlings had reached the stage of self-feeding. When a parent brought food into the nest, the nestlings quickly snatched it and absconded to the back of the box. From the start, Kara did this far more of ten than Percy. This is typical of female nest lings that tend to be more assertive. Indeed, she could intercept the food, but her ability to tear off bite-sized pieces had yet to develop.

Each season we watch for certain mile stones in the chicks’ development. Behavior al milestones include: their first time up on the lip of the nest box; their first visit to the box’s side platforms (verandas); and the first

time they go onto the cross perch and long perch. One of the last milestones we watch for is when the nestlings start venturing onto the window ledges beyond the verandas. We found it interesting that Kara nearly kept par ity with Percy. She did virtually everything he did, and sometimes only hours later. This was surprising since female Peregrines, with their larger body size, generally take more time to mature. Temperamentally, female nestlings, while dominant inside the nest, tend to be more timid in their adventurism outside the nest. On the afternoon of June 8th, first Percy and then Kara got up onto the lip of the nestbox. This is always a nerve-rack ing moment for us, when the nestlings first venture from the safety of the box. We are keenly aware that fifteen stories be low is a busy street. Of course, once a

then, Astrid landed on a window ledge east of the veranda. She does this to encourage their adventurism and to lure them over. Challeng es like these are what prepare young birds for fledging. At 6am, Kara successfully made it over to the east veranda and joined her brother. A little while later, Percy accepted his mother’s challenge and hopped from the corner of the veranda to a window ledge.

On the morning of June 14th, the two nestlings were active and intrepid. Both had been going onto the verandas and to the win dow ledges beyond. While he worked his way west along the ledges, Percy tripped as he negotiated around the base of a pillar. It was nearly an inadvertent fledging, but he caught himself and managed to regain his

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Ares on the bank roof

grip on the ledge. At a few minutes after 10am, Percy was ready. He peered into the canyon, bobbed his head a few times and jumped into the sky. His wing flapping was strong as he headed towards the Grace Church steeple. At the last second, he decided against trying to land on the structure’s sheer walls. Instead, he banked right over Genesee Street and headed north towards the Doubletree Inn. He managed to maintain altitude as he approached the building, ultimately landing on the narrow ledge that runs along the hotel’s east side. He wouldn’t try to fly again for the rest of the day.

Early the next morning, he was flying again, this time with both parents as escorts. Percy attempted to land on the steeple but missed his mark and slid down the wall. Before sliding far, he found his wings and was able to flap his way back to the State Building where he put down safely on a window ledge. Soon he called out to be fed. As far as we knew, he hadn’t eaten since before fledging the previous day. After a nap and wing exercises, he played with both parents as he practiced flying.

Before sun rise on June 28th, we already knew it was go ing to be a big day. Kara had been doing se rious wing flap ping on the east veranda. That culminated in a flight up to the roof of the nest box. From there she glided back down to the long perch. This was significant, since the day a nestling goes up onto the roof of the box is often the day they fledge. Kara was no exception; at 5:44am, she fledged from the veranda. Just like her brother, her fledg ing was deliberate. She simply spread her wings and dove into flight. Once airborne, she flapped her way south and towards the Grace Church steeple. She tried to land high on the wall of the structure but, like so many fledglings be fore her, she failed to get a grip. She slid down, recovered, deployed her wings, and flew on towards the State Build ing. She attempted to land on a window ledge on the north face of the building but missed her target. She stumbled but then got a solid hold on another ledge below. She was about halfway up the building which was a safe enough height to be. As first flights go, it wasn’t too bad. Landings are difficult for all fledglings and Kara managed it without damaging herself.

Kara’s next flight wasn’t until 5:50 the following morning; 24 hours after her inaugural flight. She simply flew out of view. But then, several minutes later, she reap peared on the roof of the Adirondack Bank. Percy joined her, landing on top of an antenna. Their reunion party was short-lived, and soon Kara was up and flying again. She

Kara contemplates flying
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Kara steals Percy’s food

made her way north to the hotel and landed on top of the roof wall. Despite Kara’s lack of experience, her flying was competent. It was clear that both young Peregrines had successfully made it past the most daunting challenge in their lives thus far – fledging. There would be more challenges to come, but they were both well on their way to be coming full members of the world’s most elite class of raptors – the Peregrine Falcons

As the weeks went by, the young falcons’ skill sets continued to improve. By the begin ning of July, they regularly left the canyon and spent time in other sectors of their par ent’s territory. Whatever adventures they got up to, they typically returned to the canyon

and to ledges on the State Office Building to spend the night. The young falcons remained on their parent’s territory until close to the end of July. After that, they began their long journey southward – possibly to Central or South America. Independence for young raptors is full of challenges, and Percy and Kara were as prepared to meet them as any young falcons could be. If they return next spring, we are unlikely to recognize them. A complete feather molt will leave them look ing more like their parents. As for Astrid and Ares, they will remain on their territory through the winter months. Well before their young left town, they resumed courtship dis plays at the nest box, thus making clear their

intention to breed the following spring. In 2023, the Utica Peregrines will be celebrat ing their 10th breeding season together – an amazing achievement for members of a re cently recovered endangered species. •

Perry is Conservation Director and Resident Natu ralist

Spring Farm CARES in Clinton. He manages a 260 acre nature preserve which is open for tours by appointment. His nature videos and photos can be found on the Spring Farm CARES’ Nature Sanctuary Facebook page.

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winter gardening

For years now, we have grown greens in our greenhouse in winter. Many of you enjoyed the salad mix we sold at the farmers’ markets and at The Tailor and the Cook. We experimented with different varieties, exploring the never-ending variation in flavor and appearance while listening to the requests of local chefs. We did many trials on soil, seed, and water pH to learn what each variety preferred.

Winter is one of the best times to garden! That’s right! Indoors on your kitchen counter! A common limitation many face when trying to grow their own food is the commitment it requires to take on a garden. Just as spring and summer are the busiest times in the garden, they are also busy times in folk’s lives. We are often called away from home during the summer months, leaving a well-intentioned garden a forgotten responsibility or a burden for a neighbor. Growing your own greens allows you to stop and start whenever you want, leaving you with less of a commitment.

Over the past twenty years, interest in local, fresh, and organic food has been on the rise. In the Mohawk Valley, there has been a revival of farmers’ markets, the inception of the CSA model (Community Supported Agricul ture), Food-Co-ops, and an overall movement toward clean, whole foods.

Growing your own greens gives you access to fresh, living greens all year long with minimal investment of money, time, or knowledge. The little amount of space required makes it the perfect fit for both urban and suburban families, who might not have room for a garden.

Aside from great taste, greens are also extremely nutritious. The ability to harvest and eat them within minutes gives you access to their most nutri tious state. Loaded with a strong dose of digestible vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients, your taste buds will enjoy the intense flavor and your body will reap the benefits of concentrated nutrients.

Sprouts, microgreens, and baby greens are all stages in a plant’s devel opment. A sprout is the first stage of a seed’s development. Grown in differ ent types of containers, these seeds are kept moist and at room temperature until they germinate. Instead of allowing them to grow into an established plant, sprouts are consumed right after germination. They yield a crunchy texture.

Microgreens are grown in a medium (soil or potting mix) the second stage of a seed’s development involves the establishment of its roots and the opening of its first leaves, called cotyledons. Greens harvested at this stage are called microgreens.

If microgreens are allowed to continue to grow, they put on their next

set of leaves, called “true leaves.” True leaves are the leaves of a plant that distinguish it from another plant. It will eventually reach the baby green stage. Baby greens are tender leaves. They are more flavorful and tender than leaves from a fully-grown head of lettuce. This is the stage we like to grow at.

How to Grow Baby Greens

Due to the short time greens spend in their containers, any shallow re ceptacle will do. We think a standard 20 x 10-inch black plastic tray works best. These trays are easily available at garden supply stores or online. A shallow flower pot also works, but keep in mind clay pots can hinder ger mination by drying out too quickly and wicking water from the soil. Proper drainage is important. But if you have a restaurant supply store, you can get some of those clear plastic salad containers, or save them from your take-out meals. These make a great little greenhouse with an attached lid and are the perfect size to grow a lot of varieties of greens in a small area.

Soil is the heart of any farm or garden. Choosing the right soil to grow your greens is vital. We suggest using organic, good-quality potting soil to grow your greens. Make sure the bags are labeled with their ingredients so you know what you are getting.

After filling your trays with soil, you will need something to gently press down on the soil to create a flat seed bed. A piece of cardboard works well, and it’s free!

Quality seeds are another integral part of growing greens. Factors that will affect the viability of your seeds are storage, handling, age, and seed source.

When it comes to storing and handling your seeds, you will want to keep them cool and dry. Avoid fluctuation in temperature and moisture. Proper care of your seeds will maintain their viability for a longer time. Your seeds will last 2-5 years depending on the vegetable, with proper care. Remember, seed packets contain lots of valuable information, such as germination rate, age, and seed variety.

We only choose seeds for our farm, from small organic seed companies, such as Hudson Valley Seed Company, High Mowing, Bakers Creek, and Johnny’s Select Seeds.

Paper towels are a quick and effective alternative to covering your seeds with soil. Usually, you would cover a sown tray with a dusting of soil, enough to cover the seeds. With the number of seed trays we grow in a week, paper towels become the best alternative. Just remember to purchase

11 mohawk valley Gardens & recipes
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unbleached, natural paper towels. The purpose of this layer of soil or paper towels will be to provide a covering layer to keep your seeds warm and moist as they germinate.

Since you are growing the greens so densely, air circulation is very important. The key to good watering is to be gentle yet thorough. Once your trays are watered, you will need to cover them with lids if you are not growing in a greenhouse. Lids will speed up germination, hold in heat and retain moisture. If you are using plastic lids, you will want to keep an eye on your trays in direct sunlight. The lid can create tempera tures inside much greater than the air outside. If you notice that things are a bit steamy, simply remove the lid slightly to the side to create more ventilation.

As your seeds are germinating, it’s important to maintain proper moisture. With the paper towel method, watch the towel and observe the dampness and water daily. One of the benefits of the paper towel is it provides a window into the germination process. Instead of your seeds hidden from view under a layer of soil, you can simply lift the corner of the paper towel to observe the stages of germination.

Scissors are your best friend when harvesting greens. Buy a separate pair solely for harvesting your greens. Making a clean cut through the stem is one of the most important to the longevity of your greens. The less cell damage done at harvest, the longer they will hold.

When deciding how many trays to grow, your first consideration will be how many people you are feeding. Because the growing season is only a few weeks, it’s easy to start small and adjust accordingly. Each tray can be sown with a few different varieties so you can enjoy an as sortment of flavors and colors of fresh greens.

Our favorite salad mixes include: green & red oak leaf, red romaine, green & red leaf lettuces, spinach, red Russian kale, red-veined sorrel, and red frills mustard. But experiment and make your own mix.

Greens taste best with a light vinaigrette! •

December Concert Schedule Box Office info & tickets (315) 859-4331
presented by the Hamilton College Department of Music
Wellin Hall, Schambach Center for Music and the Performing Arts Free Performances
Jazz Ensemble t • Fri., December 2 at 7:30pm
Doc Woods directs the Hamilton College Jazz Ensemble Chamber Ensembles
• Sat., December 3 at 7:30pm
Piano Duets, Hamstrings, Percussion Ensemble, Brass Ensemble, and others. Hamilton Voices • Sun., December 4 at 2pm Hamilton Voices under the direction of Charlotte Botha. Hamilton College Choir • Wed., December 7 at 7:30pm Program about love and lovers throughout the ages. Winter Hamilton College Orchestra • Fri., December 9 at 7:30pm Heather Buchman conducts
MVL RECIPES Basic Vinaigrette by Denise A. Szarek ½ cup olive oil 3 T vinegar (red or white wine, apple cider, or balsamic vinegar) 1 T Dijon mustard 1 T honey 1 T finely chopped shallots ¼ tsp salt Fresh ground pepper to taste. Blend together. Takes 5 minutes of your time and will last 2 weeks in your fridge.
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Little Falls Antique Center MOHAWK ANTIQUES MALL SHOWCASE Antiques of CNY Little Falls mv living antique shopping guide Mohawk Renewed & Rescued TO HERKIMER Antiques make thoughtful gifts for the special people on your list! 16 Antiques & Art Westmoreland Shop unique holiday gifts! 5475 State Rt 233, Westmoreland Furniture: Victorian to Mid-Century Lots of Art! Architectural Salvage Primitives Records, Books, & Collectibles Open: Thurs & Fri: 11-6, Sat & Sun: 11-4 7,000 Square-Foot Multi-Dealer Store! 22 Oriskany Blvd., Yorkville (315) 736-9160 Facebook: The Queens Closet & Attic Addicts Celebrating 24 years in business! Attic Addicts The Queen’s Closet Pristine, Practical, and Priced Right! Specializing in estate sales, large and small. Conducted with respect and dignity. Consignment at its Finest! Clothing, Jewelry Household Items Furniture Call for a consultation: (315) 736-9160 Winter Hours: Tues-Fri 11pm-5pm, Sat 10:30am-3pm, Closed Sun & Mon New consignment by appt. only Visit us for Christmas in Little Falls Sat., Dec. 10th! Fun for the whole family! Mohawk Antiques Mall Christmas Open House Party! See Page 2! Herkimer
17 Furniture, Vintage Linens, Warm Glow Candles (USA made) & more! A primitive and country mix of old purposeful clutter and handmades Black Cat ANTIQUES & GIFTS Multi Dealer Antique Shop Primitives • Furniture • Artwork Smalls • Antique Accessories Wed Sat: 10-4, Sun: 11-3 • (315) 264-1755 4803 Rt. 31, Vernon ESTATE & HOUSE SALES APPRAISALS ALWAYS BUYING Don & Nancy Hartman, 52 Oriskany Blvd., Whitesboro (Next to Kinney’s) 315-736-5214 THE POTTING SHED ANTIQUES Vintage, Gold, & Sterling Silver Jewelry, Coins, Glass, China, Furniture, Americana, Advertising, Art, Lighting, and more! Holiday Open House Thursdays, Fridays, & Saturdays Thanksgiving to Christmas! Mention this ad for 50% OFF EVERYTHING!* 11/25 thru 12/24 *except coins and gold jewelry Keep your Holiday Tradition! Friends & Family Make Holiday Memories! Broad St. Flea Market 601 Second Street Utica (315) 941-0925 • Wed-Fri 10-5, Sat & Sun 10-4, Closed Mon & Tues Indoor & Open Year Round! Largeselectionofvendorswithanevenlargervarietyofitems! New Handmade Soy Candles, Lucky Bamboo, CBD Products to Incense, Jewelry, Zippo Lighters, Craft Items, Furniture & Household Items! Large selection of DVDs & CDs Like Us! &Christmas Holiday Items! , Come in and register now for an opportunity to win a 4ft filled Christmas stocking! Drawing on Sat., Dec. 17th. Inventoryalwayschanging-Stopinoften!Vendorapplicationsaccepted. An Early Style Christmas Begins Dec. 3rd Offering Seasonal Goods & Antiques Reflecting Simpler Times Richfield Springs, NY Open Most Every Day: 10-5 13 College St., Clinton (315) 796-9099 • Open every day: 10-6 Follow us on Facebook! Open in Clinton daily: 10-6 & at Johnny Appleseeds Wed-Sun: 10-5 We have unique and unusual items that make it worth the trip! HappyShopping! Gift cards also available! Dawn Marie’s Treasures Vintage & New Gifts It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas in Clinton & at Johnny Appleseed! Holiday Open House December 9, 10, 11! Giveaways, Treats & more! Specializing in Lionel Trains We Buy & Sell! (315) 838-0144 Whistle Post Antiques 6845 St. Rt. 20 Bouckville • Hours: Sat & Sun: 10-4 Handcrafted Stenciled Signs & Holiday Decor Custom orders available (315) 893-7604 S
18 Weeden’s Mini Mall 8056 Route 13, Blossvale (Located 4 miles North of Sylvan Beach) (315) 245-0458 • Open 10-5 every day • Loaded with Antiques, Vintage, Collectibles, & many unique items! Over 40 years in business! Over 100 shops under one roof! Great Gifts for Everyone! All kinds of Unique Vendors under one roof! Artisans,Crafters,Antiquesto RetroincludingFoodItems. Vendors Wanted 142 North Main St., Herkimer • 315-219-9195 Open Tues-Fri: 10-4:30, Sat: 10-4, Closed Sun & Mon • Also home of 315-628-1506 Little Falls Antique Center Visit us and save green! Look for sales & holiday fun throughout the store! Thruway Exit 29A 25 West Mill St., Little Falls Open 6 days a week: 10-5 Closed Tuesdays 315-823-4309 Handicapped-accessible More than 50 vendors on 2 floors! Antiques • Art • Crafts Save the date! Christmas in Little Falls Sat., Dec. 10th! Find something for everyone! Furniture, antiques, vintage, toys, candy, jams, alpaca products, and more! MADISON INN ANTIQUES FURNITURE • TOOLS BOOKS • COLLECTIBLES GLASS • PRIMITIVE 7417 St Rte 20 • Madison 315-893-7639 Open Thurs-Sun: 10-5 Antiques make Great Gifts! 315-893-1786 • 3371 Maple Ave., Bouckville Victorian Rose Open Daily 10-4 Vintage Antiques, Crafts & Collectibles 75 Antique Dealers Quality Antiques, Collectibles, Furniture, Art and Jewelry Showcase Antiques of CNY 375 Canal Place, Little Falls (315) 823-1177 Open Daily 10-5 • Handicap Accessible “Spin the Wheel” up to 15% off! Complimentary Homemade Christmas Cookies Purchase any Antique Ornament from our 10’ tree & you could win a $25 gift card! Nov. 25-Dec. 24 Join us for Christmas in Little Falls, Sat., Dec. 10th!

Some consider winter in the Mohawk Valley to be a bird desert. A time when birds are largely absent from our landscape. This is not the case. There are between 60 and 80 species of birds that spend at least part of the winter here. Less than half are year-round residents, while the remainder travel here to avoid food deprivation in the north. The num ber of species that stay with us varies depend ing on the severity of the winter, the amount of snow cover, and the amount of available food. In December, many so-called “half-har dy” songbird species may attempt to remain in the region, but the inevitable onset of harsh er weather is usually enough to persuade them to head further south. The Hermit Thrush will sometimes attempt to spend the winter here but only rarely persists after December. In the breeding season, Hermit Thrushes inhab it dense forest in the north country as well as some of the Valley’s wooded ravines. In win ter, they may try to eke out a living in ber ry-laden forest edges and thickets. They share these places with overwintering American Robins and Eastern Bluebirds. These fellow thrush species have little trouble switching from a summer diet of insects and worms to a winter diet of fruit and berries. While Rob ins and Bluebirds are confident in their ability to continue to find food past December, the Hermit Thrush usually is not, and they seldom remain after the thickets are picked clean.

The Hermit may not be so winter-hardy, but they are hardier than the Win ter Wren. The Winter Wren will sometimes remain in the Mohawk Valley if winter re mains mild. Not as flexible in its diet as the thrushes, the wren depends on finding dor mant insects and spiders which they collect on or near the ground. Their hunting ability is easily hampered by snow cover and frozen soil. Overwintering Golden-crowned Kinglets and Brown Creepers manage to remain strict insectivores through the winter. Their ability to glean their quarry from bark crevices high in the trees gives them an edge over the more ground-centric Winter Wren. This being the case, while kinglets and creepers regularly persist through the depths of winter, we rarely see the Winter Wren after the first weeks of December.

There can be up to a dozen species of wa terfowl found locally at the start of December. Typically, they will be whittled down to about four or five species by month’s end. Mallards and Canada Geese are the most dependable waterfowl species to encounter in winter. In deed, if there is some open water available, they will stay. Common Mergansers are also reliable winter residents. They can easily in habit rivers and large streams. Since running water remains open and ice-free, mergansers can continue to catch fish through the cold

spells that cause the region’s ponds and lakes to freeze over. A few Wood Ducks and Hood ed Mergansers may also be found on stretches of open water, but they are never common. In the last twenty-five years, Snow Geese have taken to migrating through our region in De cember. It is possible to see many thousands of them winging through the sky or crowding local bodies of water and cut cornfields. Al though not classified as waterfowl, Great Blue Herons and Belted Kingfishers are just as tied to the presence of open water, and a handful of them typically remain in the region for at least part of the winter.

Many of our winter resident songbirds are also year-round residents. These non-migra tory species can make an adequate living from the sometimes-scant amount of food present during the heart of winter. This may seem a risky survival strategy, but by staying here they avoid the hazards associated with a long migration flight. Their more flexible diet sets them up to endure the vagaries of any single winter food resource. Those of us that have bird feeders know most of these year-round ers well. They include the Wild Turkey, Ruffed Grouse, Black-capped Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse, White-breasted Nuthatch, Northern Cardinal, Mourning Dove, Downy

MV NATURE december
in nature
story and photos by Matt Perry
• DESIGN STUDIO • Mary LaBella • (315) 525-0888 View our gallery at: Deliveries daily Here to help All of Life’s Events! Birthday Get Well Weddings Love You Sympathy Wine & Spirits Ilion 10 East Main St., Ilion • (315) 894-8142 Open Mon-Sat: 9-9, Sun: 12-5 • All credit cards accepted
The Hermit Thrush sometimes overwinters

Some popular winter resident songbirds are migrants from the north. These birds come here specifically to avoid harsher winter conditions on their northern breeding grounds. These species include White-throated Sparrow and Tree Sparrow. Some of our winter resident songbirds belong to species that are also represented here during the breeding season. However, those individuals that spend the summer here migrate south and are replaced by an identical population arriving from the north. Songbirds that carry out this seamless changeover include the American Robin and the Dark-eyed Junco.

Irruptive songbird species are those that lead a nomad ic lifestyle based on where the food is. Irruptive species include many of the winter finches. If the spruce cone crop is lacking in the far north, some may travel thousands of miles to other forests where the crop is more substantial. Other irruptive species make similar decisions based on the presence of their preferred food. The Cedar Waxwing and Bohemian Waxwing are not finches, but their nomadic life styles lead some to characterize them as honorary finches. In their case, it’s the fruit and berry crop that compels them to travel. In the Mohawk Valley, we may go several winters without seeing some of these species, but when they do show up, it can be in great numbers. Finches and waxwings are not the only bird species prone to irruptive behavior. Populations of Blue Jays and Red-breasted Nuthatches are also known to move considerable distances based on the

Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, Red-bellied Woodpeck er, Pileated Woodpecker, and Carolina Wren. Snowy Owls come when their prey is lacking in the far north Purple Finches sometimes spend the winter here
NEW HARTFORD SHOPPING CENTER 315.797.0025 The Adirondack Boot Perfect for the mountains, the city, or anywhere in between. Available in 6 colors!
Red-Bellied Woodpecker

There are up to twenty species of raptor that can be encountered in the winter in our region. However, in a typical winter, we expect to find about half that many. Our most reliable winter resident raptors include Red-tailed Hawk, Cooper’s Hawk, Great Horned Owl, Barred Owl, and Eastern Screech Owl. Less common ly encountered raptors include Rough-legged Hawk, Snowy Owl, and Short-eared Owl. The Rough-legged Hawk and Snowy Owl will show up in our region in years when the vole and lemming populations crash in the far north. Eagles are becoming an increasingly common sight in the Mohawk Valley in winter. The secret of the eagle’s ability to remain in a region with little open water is its ability to switch from eating fish to feeding on carrion. Golden Eagles typically migrate through the region in November, but some continue to pass through in December. Occasionally a few will remain for the winter. Like the Bald Eagle, Golden Ea gles can make a decent living off roadkill. Far from being a bird desert, December is a time when birds may just take a little more effort to find. It all comes down to knowing their habits and knowing where to look. If you go out searching for them, be sure to check the waterways and the cut corn fields. Also, be sure to pay a visit to berry-rich thickets and forest edges. You may find more than you expected. •

21 2408 St. Rt. 169, Little Falls (315) 823-1133 • Wed- Sun 10-6 Naturewood Knoll Tree Farm Open Wednesday November 2 - Friday December 23 SantawillvisitonSaturday,December3rdfrom11:00amuntil2:00pm Open House “Gingerbread Days” Weekend December 2, 3 and 4 Gift Shop Open Daily 9-6, except Tuesdays 895 Babcock Hill Rd., West Winfield (315) 822-5135 country gift shop now open! Unique gifts, Christmas Decor, & Local NY State Products Fresh & Silk Wreaths, Fresh Cut Trees, Kissing Balls Casler Flower Farm Come experience New York’s onlynarrow-gauge tourist railway! 168 Mc Koons Road (conveniently located outside Richfield Springs, off Route 28) Tickets and info at: or call 315-717-5969 Richfield Springs Scenic Railway • Make your reservations for Holiday, Private Party, Special Event, & Full Moon Trains! • Sunday afternoon scenic outings at 3pm. • Special Full Moon Train Dec 7th! • Festive Fridays: Enjoy heated passenger cars, holiday music, & unique ‘ColorGlo’ lighted railway throughout December! • Visit Facebook or for schedules and ticket info.
of food.
Phone: 607-286-9201 Mon - Fri: 8:00am - 4:30pm Sat: 8:00am - 12:00pm 146 County Highway 35a Portlandville, NY 13834 NowBuyingHardwoodLogs • Kiln Dried Hardwoods and Softwoods • Hardwood and Pine flooring • Mouldings • Wall Coverings • Siding Quality. Experience. Inspiration. Follow us on facebook Wightman Specialty Woods Look for Common Mergansers on rivers and streams Red-breasted Nuthatches travel based on food supplies The Northern Cardinal is a year-round resident
22 Mon-Sat: 10am-4pm See our full schedule 3273 State Rte. 28 | Old Forge, NY 13420 | 315-369-6411 General Admission $10 Members, Kids under 18, & Military (with id): FREE Winter Exhibitions Flowers, Trees, & Roots: The Wild World of Plants Botanical Illustration: The Art & Science of Plants Precaria: Disturbance & Dislocation Wood Sculptures by Jack Elliott All Exhibitions Open December 9 Bristlecone & Moon by Don Jacobson Fiore di Primavera by Carina Imbrogno Stella ( 31 5 ) 858- 0 95 5 FRESH CUT FRASIER FIR & BALSAM CHRISTMAS TREES POINSETTIAS WREATHS & KISSING BAL LS GIFT SETS HOLIDAY CENTERPIECES GIFT CERTIFICATES 8442 ST. HWY. 28 • RICHFIELD SPRINGS Fantastic Apples! Including Crispin, Empire, MacIntosh, Jonagold, Ever Crisp and many more. Also Pears, Butternut Squash, Potatoes & Cabbage. Fresh Sweet Apple Cider! Local maple syrup, honey, and Adirondack cheese! Also Frontier Soups, and Utica Coffee! 4695 Middle Settlement Road, New Hartford, NY (315) 736-5883 Open Mon-Sat 9-6, Sun 10-5 Family Owned for 70 Years Available in December.. 6505 Route 5, Vernon, NY 13476 (315) 829-3035 Mon-Wed 9-5, Thur-Fri 9-6, Sat 9-4 Your Source for: Gift Boxes-Shipped! Homemade Pies Bulk Foods & Spices Canned Goods, Candies, Jams, Deli Meats & Cheeses, Yogurt, Baked Goods, Outdoor Furniture, Gifts & More! w The Olde Kountry Market M


This month marks the return of our old friend, the one who ushers in the season and turn raindrops into snow and ice. Old Man Winter arrives on Decem ber 21, the official start of winter and the day with the least daylight. But snow and ice are not unique to Earth. There are a surprising number of places in our solar system where snow and ice are found. Let’s take a look at a few, starting with our nearest neighbor.

The stark surface of the Moon is covered with craters due to millions of years of impacts by asteroids and me teors. Although it seems to only have lava fields, ancient volcanoes, rocks, and fine powdery particles called rego lith, it is a different story down in some of the deep craters where sunlight nev er shines. Here we find water ice! This discovery was made in 2009 as a result of data captured by NASA’s LCROSS spacecraft and Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) sent to the Moon on an unusual mission.

The data collection began when the LCROSS Centar upper stage separated and intentionally crashed into Cabeus crater near the south pole. LCROSS was close behind, flying through the debris field four minutes later while transmit ting data and images it collected before also crashing into Cabeus. Meanwhile, LRO, orbiting overhead, captured more data about the entire event, providing

proof that water ice was detected. NASA’s Arte mis program intends to investigate the south po lar region as a potential source of water for future crews and rocket fuel.

The polar regions of Mars have ice caps that grow and shrink as seasons change, and in 2008 NASA sent the Phoenix lander to the north pole region to in vestigate the composition of the ice and soil. Using a scoop at the end of a robot ic arm to dig trenches about two inches deep it collected surface soil samples. The material was analyzed by onboard “chemistry lab” science instruments, and the tests confirmed water ice was present. Phoenix also detected snow falling from Martian clouds.

Oh, here’s a fun Phoenix mission and Mohawk Valley connection. Did you know the scoop that collected the sur face samples (inset photo) was built by Custom Tool & Model Corporation (CTM) in Frankfort, NY? CTM was awarded a NASA contract to build the scoop that played a crucial role in the mission.

Beyond Mars is an impressive list of snowy and icy worlds. Jupiter alone has four notable moons:

Europa’s solid water ice surface is 10-15 miles thick and covers an under ground ocean believed to hold twice as

much water as Earth’s oceans.

Beneath Ganymede’s icy shell is a salty ocean that may contain more water than is on Earth’s surface.

Callisto has a rocky, icy surface with the most craters in the solar system and bright white spots thought to be water ice at the crater tops.

Io has volcanoes that erupt and spew sulfur dioxide hundreds of miles into space where it freezes and falls back to the surface as snow.

Saturn’s icy moon Enceladus is in teresting. Geysers shoot jets of water from the underground ocean through cracks in the surface and out into space where it freezes. Some ice falls back onto the surface, while the rest ends up in Saturn’s rings.

And last but not least, even dwarf planet Pluto has methane snow and ice on a chain of mountains.

As we can see, snow and ice are abundant in our little part of the universe and coming again soon, if not already, to our part of planet Earth. Get your skis and boots ready!

Wishing you clear skies! •

Hanny’s Voorwerp. Image Credit: NASA, ESA, W. Keel, Galaxy Zoo Team
Mohawk valley astronomical society
& icy
23 DEANSBORO SUPERETTE Middle Eastern Favorites! Mon-Fri: 6am-6pm, Sat: 6am-5pm, Closed Sun Rt 12B, Deansboro (315) 841-4377 Humous, Kibbie, Falafel, Babaghanoush , Taboulie, Grape leaves, Spinach pies. Home of the Monster Sub! Fine furniture made in the USA We can customize any of our new pieces of furniture! JEFF’S HANDCRAFTED AMISH FURNITURE (315) 858-1010 • 1058 Route 28, Jordanville, 13361 Mon-Tues & Thurs-Sat: 10am-5pm, Sun: 11am-4pm, closed Wed Local wine, gifts, and more! 400 Academy St., Prospect Wed-Sat 10-5, Sun 12-5 315-205-4045 @WineB4Wildrness “Wine Before Wilderness”
Phoenix Lander Scoop Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona/Texas A&M University


2. The aptly named horse of Tim’s grandfa ther. See Shawangunk.

4. “Where” Valley Girl likes to shop.

6. The name of the male offspring of Ares and Astrid.

8. What gift did young Beatrice receive for Christmas in 1933?

10. Like Hans Christian Andersen’s toy soldier.

11. Like Rudolph’s nose.

12. Santa’s right-hand man.


1. Suzie offers up a recipe for this in a cup.

2. ____ Gardens, the best place for alpaca socks (and sweaters, hats, mittens, blankets...) See page 5.

3. Despite its name, this thrush is not a fan of frost. See “Birds of December.”

4. Like the town of Bethlehem.

5. Not The Mighty Ducks, this local hockey team’s namesake is the “spirit of the ADKS.”

7. “Ox” of the Himalayas. 9. This part of NASA’s Phoenix lander was made at Custom Tool & Model (CTM) in Frankfort, NY

Now known as Hockeytown, Clinton was once known as this. Unscramble the letters in the yellow boxes then email your answer to: by the 18th of this month. You’ll be entered to win an MVL Mug and a bag of delicious, fresh-roasted FoJo Beans coffee! Answer and winner to last month’s puzzle on page 46. DECEMBER Crossword Answers found in the pages of this magazine! Solution will appear in next month’s issue mv crossword 24 Cell Shades Wood Blinds & Shutters Vignettes & Pirouettes Silhouettes & Woven Woods Vertical Blinds & Panels Roller & Solar Shades Also a complete line of upholstery for bedspreads, draperies and upholstered headboards, etc, 1 Genesee St, New Hartford, NY 315 793 1994 Now in the New Hartford Shopping Center! 8874 Tibbitts Rd., New Hartford 315-793-3114 Come see us for all your maple syrup products! Call ahead for Curbside Pick-Up INC. Repairs & Service on all bicycles! Bicycles Snowshoes Cross-Country Skis 411 Mohawk St., Herkimer • 315-866-5571
THE FAIR TRADE SHOP at STONE CHURCH 8 South Park Row, Clinton NY 13323 Fair Wages & Fair Working Conditions For Artisans and Small Farmers Around The World 4576 Middle Settlement Rd. (Just south of Lowe’s) 433 Coventry Ave., Utica • 315 733-7676 Tues-Fri: 10:30-5, Sat: 10:30-1:30 FINE JEWELRY • JEWELRY REPAIR • GIFT ITEMS Sparkling jewelry and gifts! Detail from a work from “Cosmis Slop,” an exhibit of work by Jay Simple that explores the messy process of how we look to the past to understand our present and imagine our future. On display at the PrattMWP Gallery at Fountain Elms in Utica through December 15th. December 2022 GALLERY GUIDE KACMembersShow December 10-January 14 Opening reception: 3-4pm, Saturday, December
2022 Kirkland Art Center 9½ E Park Row, Clinton, NY (315) 853-8871 • Final Exhibits of 2022 Through December 31, 2022 Elliott Erwitt (American, Born 1928); New York, Marilyn Monroe, 1956; Gelatin Silver Print. The Art of Observation: PhotographerElliottErwitt An exhibition
Erwitt’s balance between commercial and personal photography, and the memorable flavor that he brings to his work.
(315) 25
Jonathan Kirk – Abstract Sculpture:Fables,Foibles, and other Machinations Kirk’s sculptures are evocative of a wide range of sources, from the natural and organic world, to forms of industrial and naval architecture. Tales from the Rockabout Hills: D. Michael Price Featuring work of local, well-respected fine artist and children’s book author/ illustrator. Fantasy art created in acrylic and oil mediums on canvas. Fenimore Art Museum
Hwy 80, Cooperstown, NY (607) 547-1400 Christmas House, varietyofvendors Through December 2022 Fusion Art Gallery
Turin Road, Rome, NY
Plants This exhibit explores all manner of rendering plants: their habitats; their shape, form, color and uses; their symbolism in religion; their medicinal properties; and more TheArt&ScienceofBotanical Illustration Juried exhibit of botanical art and illustration Precaria:Disturbanceand Dislocation,SculpturalWorksby JackElliott Work that express relations between trees, people, and our shared environment. View 3273 Rt. 28, Old Forge, NY (315) 369-6411 JaySimple:CosmicSlop Through December 15, 2022 Explores the historical and social trajectories from the religious practices of pre-colonial Western Africa to the first enslaved people to walk the shores of Virginia, and into the present uncertainty, of belonging and living in the United States of America. The PrattMWP Gallery at MWPAI 310 Genesee Street, Utica, NY (315) 797-0000 • Having an art opening? Let us know for a free listing in our monthly guide! Email: Wilderness:LightSizzlesAroundMe,LesleyDill Through January 29, 2023 Renowned Brooklyn-based artist Dill brings together 16 influential figures from America’s past in a striking exhibition featuring sculptures and two-dimensional works . 310 Genesee Street, Utica, NY 315) 797-0000 531 Varick St., Utica • 315 765-6463 Open Tues-Fri 11-6, Sat 11-4 • We have the sweetest stocking stufers! Christmas Open House • Dec. 10th, 11am-6pm Giveaways, Samples, & Special Sales! Photos with Santa! 9-Noon 20 West Park Row, Clinton, NY 315.853.3650 Open: Mon-Sat 10-6, and Sundays after Thanksgiving Shop for all your family’s favorite brands! Complimentary gift wrapping! clothing and giftware for men, women, children and infants
December Dec.
2022-Mar 26,
Dec. 9, 5-7pm Flowers,TreesandRoots: The Wild World of

A christmas gift

As the holidays approach, many of us reflect back on years past. Traditions have changed over the decades. For many, it was and is a time to gather with family and friends and share food, fun, and memories. As we grow older, some of our most cherished memories come from childhood. The memory that follows comes from the childhood of Beatrice W. who grew up in Utica. This story was saved as part of a series of oral histories collected by the History Center in the early 2000s to capture the memories of our community. It is being shared to help this memory, and our own holiday memories, endure for generations to come. Happy holidays to all.

“I couldn’t have received a better gift on Christmas morning in 1933. The Great Depression was in full swing. Dad worked a couple of days a week at P.W. Schneider’s and occasionally someone would call to request his service for a necessary carpenter repair job. It was usually an emergency

oneida county history center 27
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situation. They would ask Dad if he could wait a week or two for his pay. He always did the work but didn’t know when he would get paid. I never realized how hard it must have been for Mom and Dad to “scrape” up the money for those rubber-tired roller skates. I loved to skate and had worn out a couple of pairs of skates with metal wheels. When Dad and I went shopping for a new coffee percolator, a Christmas gift for Mom, I spotted the rubber-tired “beauties.” Dad thought they were great too. (Today you would say they were “cool.”) He must have talked it over with Mom because on Christmas morning, the skates were under the tree. All winter I skated round and round in the cellar and couldn’t wait for spring so I could get out on the sidewalks. One very windy day, I asked Mom for an old sheet and my friend Jean and I skated up to the farther end of Brookline Drive. I held onto one side of the sheet and Jean to the other. The sheet acted as a sail and before we knew it we had sailed the whole length of Brookline Drive. What fun!!! No one worried about the traffic as a car seldom traveled the street...few cars in those days. I’ll bet Mom and Dad appreciated those rubber tires too, because they weren’t as noisy as the metal ones when I skated in the basement.” •

Oneida County History Center 1608 Genesee St, Utica (315) 735-3642 Open Tues.-Fri. 10-4, Sat 10-2 Horn’s Family Farm Pasture Raised Beef Farm Raised Pork Goat Meat Cuts Frozen Chicken Free Range Eggs (Chicken & Duck) Other Local Products Smoked Ham for Christmas! Support Local Farmers! Live Better with Farm to Table. Gift Certificates Available! Now carrying a dairy line of Stoltzfus Family Dairy products! Give the Gift of Peace of Mind! (315) 736-1781 1309 Champlin Ave, Yorkville Preplanning Options Available Gina Trzepacz-Timpano Family Monuments • Mausoleums Pre-need Memorials • Columbariums Gift certificates available for spring cleaning.
Boston Store, Genesee Street, Utica, 1941

The Mighty Loons: Making Memories on Ice

Most folks who know the Adiron dacks are familiar with Common Loons that by now have migrated from lakes for the ocean to prevent entrapment by the incoming ice. But how many folks are yet familiar with The Mighty Loons that are most active on the ice all winter long in Inlet of the west-central Adirondacks?

The idea for this youth hockey program was hatched by Fourth Lake seasonal resident Steve Schanely which resurrect ed the Inlet Youth Commission’s program that had been dor mant for a number of years.

The approved proposal resonated with a number of local citizens who came together to establish a Learn to Skate pro gram for area youngsters.

Current board president, Bret Thompson, who also serves as a coach, said the group did not expect more than 15 kids to sign up initially, and were surprised at the enthusiastic response. “Registration went up to 70 kids, and 49 showed up on the ice,” he said. By the end of the winter, a majority were playing hock ey with the balance learning to skate.

Those involved with hockey at any level know how ex pensive participation in the sport can be. And yet The Mighty Loons were able to accommodate all participants free of charge. How? Thompson explained, describing the generosity of so

43 adirondack journal
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many people and several organizations near and far. “We kept getting donations from the community,” he said. And they still do! Enough so that program organizers were able to completely outfit 50 kids with full sets of equipment and also make improvements to the Fern Park pavilion where the youngsters practice and play. Thompson listed new floor mats, LED lighting outside and over the ice, a new rink liner as among those modifications. Several men also fashioned a homemade Zamboni for resurfacing the ice.

It was Thompson’s roots in youth hockey that brought coaching experience to the program and donations of much of the needed equipment. He and his family now reside in Old Forge, NY, but he reached out to the community he called “Hockeyville:” Clinton, NY, where he had grown up and played sport. He described the response from both Clinton and Whitestown as “enormous,” supplying what he called ‘”truckloads” of player and goalie equipment.

The Mighty Loons are now entering their second win ter, but because they started so late last season are only with in their first full year. Still, the program is already registered with USA Hockey, and, while the players are not yet ready for league play, they appeared together for an inter squad scrimmage on the ice last season for the Utica Comets and have caught the attention of the NHL as well. The Mighty Loons are scheduled to appear in the first intermission at the Buffalo Sabres vs. the New York Rangers game on Satur day, March 11, 2023 in Buffalo, NY!

I asked Thompson if he had any future Olympians in the program. Thompson was quick to reply that the empha sis on the program, with its 11 board members and half a

The Inlet Mighty Loons appear before a cheering Utica Comet’s crowd
Holiday Gift Baskets, Christmas Trees, Wreaths, Cookie Trays, & Stocking Stuffers! Open daily 8-6 Rte. 233, Westmoreland 315-853-1024 Follow us on social media for seasonal updates North Star Orchards Farm Market & Bakery Ice hockey was alive and well in the mid-1930s on a rink at
Arrowhead Park in Inlet.

dozen coaches, is for the girls and boys to be safe, learn, and have fun.

It proved to be a fun question to ask, as it brought to his mind The Mighty Loons first real practice ever, which happened on February 22, 2022, the 42nd anniversary of the now legend ary USA hockey victory that took place during the 1980 Winter Olympic Games in Lake Placid. Now known as the “Miracle on Ice,” a USA team comprised of amateurs and college students managed a 4-3 win over a powerful Soviet Union team that was considered at the time to be the best men’s ice hockey team in the world. Team USA then went on to defeat Finland for the Olympic Gold Medal.

Thompson reflected on the great experi ences and lifelong friends he has made during his own involvement in hockey and looks forward to the day when his 2-year-old son will also be playing. He is thankful there is this growing program and facility so close to home where his son and other boys and girls will have opportunity for the same kind of ex periences and relationships in this Adirondack town where mountains and memories meet. •

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Gary VanRiper is an author, photographer, and pastor at the Camden Wesleyan Church. He has written 19 children’s books with his son, Justin. Learn more at: The Mighty Loons team
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Mighty Loons jerseys hanging in the Utica Comet locker room like professionals!
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32 Berry Hill Book Shop Over 75,000 used books! 2349 Rte 12-B, Deansboro, NY 315-821-6188 Open Tues-Sat 10-5 Closed in January 315-922-0642 Peg learned that piano tuning takes strength (315) 737-5011 • 9716 Roberts Rd., Sauquoit Mon-Fri Open Daily, Sat & Sun 9-6 Massoud’s TREE FARM Christmas Trees! Displayed indoors or cut-your-own! Fresh Wreaths Customed Designed by Order! Visit our Christmas Gift Shop A little angel in a church nativity play
to services
William Hume rode a horse named Preacher

Tim’s grandfather, Rev. William Hume of southeast Ohio, served more than one church on Sundays during part of his ministry. He traveled between them on his horse, aptly named “Preacher”. It sounds romantic; fresh air, golden sun shine on the top of an amply brimmed straw hat, ambling along crystal rivers and cheery streams, friendly farm folk greet ing you from homesteads along the way, the cheery clippity-clop of horse hooves, and swish of a tail. I wonder if Preacher was ever urged to gallop because time was tight between services. Sometimes it rained and well-traveled roads became muddy and boggy from horse hooves and steel-rimmed carriages. Were he and Preacher tormented by aggressive horse flies and noxious swarms of mosquitoes in summer? Rev. Hume must have had a cold nose and hands at countless times from bitter winds and frosty temperatures in winter.

Like Rev. Hume, his grandson Rev.

Tim often served more than one church on some Sundays. Trips between services could be intense when the time was tight and the weather unkind, even on the modern luxuries of paved roads and motorized vehi cles.

Particularly mem orable are Christmas Eve services. The first one at our Salisbury Center church had an abundance of ador able children partici pating in a Nativity scene, replete with bathrobes, halos, and a baby doll of Jesus. The sanctuary was filled with the thumpity-thump of busy feet on the hollow, hardwood floor and emphatic stage whispers to wayward actors which muffled the reading of the biblical text; but it didn’t matter because everyone knew the story. Watching teachers and par ents attempt to herd the children into their correct stage positions was a fun part of the entertainment. One of the lit

In 1974, Tim and Peggy Spencer Behrendt set off on an adventure. They began a new life in the woods of Cold Brook, NY, without modern conveniences like electricity or indoor plumbing. These are excerpts and reflections from
chronicling their
(800) 638-3836 934 Earlville Road, Earlville (between Poolville and Earlville) Open Mon-Fri: 9:30-5, Most Sundays 10:30-3, closed Sat. Jewett’s Cheese House A family business since 1970 NY State aged cheddar 1-20 years old! Over 400 items of cheese & gourmet foods. Barney’s Angels Dog Sitting & Daycare (315) 525-3330 Home Environment Clean & Safe Friendly Spacious Daily FB videos 4361 Acme Road, Ilion Big dogs welcome too! • • • • • 1150 McQuade Ave., Utica Mon, Thurs, Fri: 8-4, Wed: 8-3, Sat: 8-Noon, Closed Sun & Tues • 315-724-5578 Cold Cuts, Pecorino Romano, Ricotta, Mozzarella, Imported Provolone, & much more! VisitusforallyourItalianFavorites! You’llloveourprices! Mon 10-2, Tues-Fri 10-7, Sat 10-4 (315) 765-6262 • 587 Main St., New York Mills • children’s bookstore • reading tutoring • arts enrichment • literacy enrichment • birthday parties Books makegreatgifts! Shop Small! CBD OIL You’ve seen the news stories, now try it for yourself! Tinctures Lotions & More! Have questions? Our friendly staff are waiting to serve you today! VISIT US TODAY: NEW HARTFORD • HERKIMER • ROCHESTER WWW.UTICAHEMPCO.COM OR FIND US ON FACEBOOK! MANY OF OUR CBD PRODUCTS MADE IN NEW YORK CBD OFFERS RELIEF FROM JOINT AND MUSCLE PAIN, HEAD AND NECK TENSION, AS WELL AS RELIEF FOR SLEEPING DISORDERS AND MUCH MORE! THC-FREE AND TRACE THC AVAILBLE NOW DELTA 9 & DELTA-8 PRODUCTS! OVER 21 ONLY. NO PRESCRIPTION NEEDED. A church nativity play in Salisbury Center
Peggy’s journal
adventures and also her childhood memories growing up in Westmoreland.

cacophony when she discovered the thrill of jumping from the stage to the floor, climbing back up the steps, and jumping off again over and over. No admonitions would deter this angel from the thrill of her first, thrilling, short flight.

Tim and I regretfully had to leave be fore we could greet all the parishioners and scurried out to face the terrors of a

hurried trip from the Ad irondack foothills down to the Mohawk Valley in semi-blizzard conditions.

At that time, we were us ing a somewhat dilapidated, hand-painted 1966 VW Bee tle, because we needed our car fund to purchase land for the Preserve. We’d named it Viktor after Viktor Frankel, a neurologist and psychiatrist who survived Auschwitz and was able to share profound insights on his experiences de scribed in “Man’s Search for Meaning”. He created a form of therapy based on the premise that the search for life’s meaning is a central human motivational force. His book was helpful to us in our personal quests for self-under standing, and the fact that he could survive a death camp made us optimistic that we could survive travel in a flimsy old Beetle.

Tim was a careful driver but going as fast as one safely can down a steep wintery road, worrying about the possibility of sliding into a ditch or a stop sign, or get ting blown off the road by a blast of bliz

zardy wind is supremely scary. We peered intently through the frosty windshield minimally cleared by the weak defroster and tiny windshield wipers. There was no heat to speak of either, so I sat on my cold seat, crunched up under my old wool mili tary coat, appropriately forming a near-fe tal position.

But we made it safely and in time, and gratefully entered the warm, well-lit Utica edifice after cracking our cold and strained facial muscles into a cheery smile. We left the emotional trials and stress of travel be hind, visited the bathroom to freshen up, and focused on leading a beautiful service of uplifting music, thoughts, and poetry for dear parishioners and their families.

Most of us suffer from stress, perfor mance anxiety, and nerves, but must learn to function with it, or despite it, while on stage, hoping that the spirit of our presen tation will transport not only ourselves but our audience to a higher consciousness where such worries can disappear “Some where Over the Rainbow.” I’ve always struggled with it, and still do, but can usu ally “pretend” confidence, like the words in an old song from “The King and I”. “Whenever I feel afraid, I hold my head erect and whistle a happy tune, so no one

34 The News Source of Old Forge, Inlet and Surrounding Communities FREE Newspaper Available in the Greater Old Forge Area! Raulli’s Iron Works 133 Mill St., Rome, New York 315-337-8070 Custom hand-made iron railings, fences & gates. 8599 Turin Rd, Rome 315-337-0821 Live a healthier and more active lifestyle! •Massage Therapy •Facials •Fitness Classes •Personal Training •Running Coaching Visit Our Showroom! •Carpet •Hardwood •Laminate •Linoleum •Ceramic Tile •Vinyl Tile 315-733-3697 3 Main St., Whitesboro • EMAIL: Michael SanFilippo Owner Why pay more? Come to Mike’s Floor Store! 7632 Hwy. 20 607-264-3987 CALL FOR HOURS CHERRY VALLEY NEW YORK Since 1950! The Tepee, no longer a stop along the way. It’s the destination! Peg plays music with family after a performance LIQUORS & WINES 8231 State Route 12, Barneveld (315) 896-4444 Merry Christmas & Happy New Year! OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK! Mon-Sat 9am-9pm, Sun 12pm-6pm HALF & FULL CASE DISCOUNTS T

will suspect I’m afraid…”

I remember seeing a video of an aged, famous conductor in frail condition, hunched over, shuffling backstage, ap pearing to barely make it with assistance to the curtain. When he was announced, his back suddenly straightened, and he walked smartly to his conductor’s podium - the antithesis of the person he had been behind the curtain.

I’ve always particularly admired Tim’s ability to speak in front of an audience. He spoke for me, too, sharing things we both believed, trying to educate, entertain and inspire while I did it through music. I often wonder if people comprehend what is behind a musical performance. The ad age that it takes 1% inspiration, and 99% perspiration is quite true. Years of study and many hours of practice go into learn ing an instrument and learning to func tion in front of an audience in a state of adrenalin. Occasionally, a natural talent or genius appears, but most musicians worth listening to are dedicated, disciplined, te nacious lovers of music who’ve invested a big chunk of their lives and money to be able to share a song with you.

The cost of a quality instrument, a protective case, and maintenance are not cheap, either. Because of cost, I had to

learn to do minor repairs and tuning on my piano, and other instruments. I was too intim idated at first to think that I could repair a piano until a female friend said, “It just comes apart one step at a time.” When my keys begin to stick, it could be because of swelling due to humidity, but more of ten, our ubiq uitous mice have been having play dates inside my instrument, leaving calling cards that fall between moving parts.

Peg accompanied The Crecendos and other groups in High School

kept a positive, cheery atmo sphere, but before a program and during rehearsals I’d get so tense and frustrated I would yell at Tim sometimes, quit, disband the duo, or stomp out, hating him, every body, and everything…then feel sorry af WWW.HBEGROUP.COM HERKIMER • 315-866-3140

Tim and I also played many concerts as a duo; “Harp and Harmony” at church es, coffee houses, and libraries including slides from our Preserve and inspirational quotes about ecology and good living. We Insurance...We Can Help Superior Protection for your Car, Home and Business DOLGEVILLE • 315-429-3181


After the program, I’d be relieved and pleased that we did it and be particu larly happy to remember that I still love my friend/husband/music partner!

I admire music teachers and parents who patiently listen to young learners day in and day out for years. I can still hear my mother’s voice calling out from the kitch en; “You’re playing something wrong there!” during practice. I am grateful that

they thought it worthwhile to pay for lessons.

Before and during a performance, I tried many different techniques to calm my nerves and negative mind chatter. “It’s not that important.” “You’ve practiced, you’ll be fine.” “Just have fun.”

“Just do your best.” May be it’s helped. Sometimes I did push-ups just before going on stage to relieve tension.

When a piece goes beautifully it’s usually because I really love that song and am focused on ex pressing feelings with it. I get so wrapped up in it that the outside world and audience are only a shadowy distraction. One time, I was particularly inspired by the lovely, high-quality piano I was playing and en tered this Mystical Music Zone, loving the beautiful sounds and nuances I could cre ate on it. Afterward, I was shocked to get our first standing ovation.

Reading an old diary recently, I was surprised to discover that I had the same

of emotions in High School. In my Junior year, I was an accompanist for three vocal groups at school. I respected our director, Mr. Davis, but resented taking directions from my peers in the smaller ensemble. Sometimes I carelessly played forte when they wanted piano or went allegro when they wanted andante. Finally, very inconsiderately just before the Christmas concert, I quit.

I wrote in 1964 (Age16).

Dec. 3. I went after school to rehearse with The Crescendos. How I hate it! BP said, “You better take these pieces home and practice them. They need work.” She gets my goat!

Dec. 4. Mr. Davis said they’d told him they were unhappy with my work. I wouldn’t go loud or soft when they want

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Old Viktor the VW helped us pay for Preserve land
39 Caruso’s Pastry Shoppe 707 Bleecker Street, Utica, New York 315-735-9712 Let us be a part of your holiday tradition! Trays of assorted mini-pastries or cookies for gift-giving to clients, customers and friends. Order yourmini-pastry & cookie trays early! Christmas at Florissante Holiday Family Tours Dec. 3 & 4 • Dec. 10 & 11 Dec. 17 & 18 11am – 5pm No cover charge - however donations are appreciated! We reserve the right of admission. Group tours (10+) must register in advance. Bus groups accommodated Thursdays & Fridays with advance registration.Space is limited and tours will be conducted accordingly. 4036 Lyons Falls Rd. Lyonsdale, NY 13368 – 2022 –315 348-4417 I
On the farm with Suzie Another Year in the Books
41 One of the roads leading to Jones Family Farm is seasonal We Sell & Service Garage and Entry Doors Residential & Commercial 505 Broad St., Utica Open M-F 8-4:30 • (315) 735-5577 • Familyownedandoperatedforover50years! DOOR & HARDWARE Try our Famous Sausage! Deli items • Beef • Steaks • Cheeses • Dry Goods Catering Trays Made to Order 711 Bleecker St., Utica (315) 765-6409 Open: Thurs & Fri: 9-4, Sat: 8-2, Sun: 8-Noon Sundays: Fried Meatballs & Fried Dough! Bossone’s Sausage & Meat Co. Utica’s Pork Store Prince-Boyd & Hyatt Home For Funerals, Inc. Home-like surroundings for your convenience & comfort. Pre-arrangement Plans with prey-payment or no payment options. 210 West Court St. Rome • 336-1510 Handicapped Accessible R

As I write, it is snowing on the farm. It is one of those qui et, nighttime snowfalls that seem to muffle all sound. There is no traffic on the slick roads, the goats and sheep are tucked away in their dry barn, and even the coyotes have taken a break from their nightly chatter. It is bliss.

Our farm is up in the hills above the West Canada Creek, high above the valley. Here, the weather can be startlingly different from whatever is going on in town.

On hot summer days, it can be a good 5-10 degrees cooler on the farm, with a lovely breeze to boot. In the winter, it means a light rain in town can turn into big, fluffy snowflakes halfway up the hill. By the time you crest the road to our farm, visitors will find a good 2-3 inches of snow and a virtual win

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ter wonderland while the rest of the valley is still in mud sea son.

It is both a blessing and a curse.

The summer breezes mean we barely have any mosqui tos on our hill. The cooler temps and deep woods give us and our animals an escape from the worst August heat. You just can’t beat summer in the country!

But winter here is another story entirely. Our rural road is open only seasonally, meaning we live on a dead-end road for nearly 6 months of the year. Traffic to our farm store drops precipitously, as the less adventurous amongst our customers decide to wait until spring to visit. We can go days without seeing another soul, other than the plow driver, mail carrier, and the next-door neighbor.

This seasonal isolation was very difficult for me at first. But I have grown to appreciate it, perhaps even protective of it. And when I consider parts of the country that are even more isolated, and the people that choose that lifestyle, I un derstand its lure.

But we have holiday parties, school concerts, and family visits this December. REAL isolation begins in January! Why not make a special treat this holiday season with cheese from our farm? This no-bake “cheesecake in a cup” recipe is as versatile as it is simple:


in a Cup

1 lb Jones Family Farm Kuyahoora Crème Cheese

1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 pack graham crackers, crushed

2 T butter, melted pinch salt

Blend first three in gredients until smooth. Mix last three ingredi ents until incorporated. Pour a heaping table spoon of the graham cracker mixture into the bottom of cup, top with crème cheese mixture. Top with an additional sprinkle of cracker mixture (op tional.) Chill for one hour and enjoy! (Makes 6-12 cups of cheesecake.)


Try topping your cheesecake with blueberry pie filling or fresh lemon zest. Change it up entirely and crush Oreos for the cracker base and dust the top of the cheese cake with crushed peppermint candies OR substitute ginger snaps for the base and add ½ cup of pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice to the cheese mixture. The possibilities are endless! •

Suzie Jones and her husband, Peter, own Jones Family Farm in Herkimer. Together, with their children, they pro duce specialty goat cheeses and gelato. Find them at local farmers’ markets and online at

CLINTON COLLISION 24 HOUR TOWING PO Box 292, McBride Ave. Clinton, NY Fax: 315.853.4751 315.853.5665

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Prince-Boyd & Hyatt . . . . . . . . . . . 41


Ironwood Furniture . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 Jeff’s Amish Furniture . . . . . . . . . . 23 John Froass & Son . . . . . . . . . . 9 Shoppes at the Finish Line . . . . . . . . 32

Furniture Makers

Custom Woodcraft . . . . . . . . . . . 10

Garden Centers and Greenhouses

Casler Flower Farm . . . . . . . . . 21

Green Lakes Home & Garden . . . . . . . 22

North Star Orchards . . . . . . . . . . . 30

Twin Orchards . . . . . . . . . . . . 22

General Contractors

Ed Smith Contractor and Handyman . . . 31

General Stores

Bonnie’s Country Store . . . . . . . . . . 36 Deansboro Superette . . . . . . . . . . . . 23

Gift Shops/Shopping

The Artisans’ Corner . . . . . . . . . . . 37

Between Us Sisters . . . . . . . . . . . 10

Fair Trade Shoppe . . . . . . . . . . 25

Fusion Art Gallery . . . . . . . . . . . 39

Krizia Martin . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26

Shoppes at Johnny Appleseed . . . . . . . 12 Shoppes at the Finish Line . . . . . . . . 32

Speedy Awards & Engraving . . . . . . 26

The Tepee . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

Whistle Post Creations . . . . . . . . 17

Grocery Stores, Co-ops, and Delis

Bosonne’s Sausage . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41

Deansboro Superette . . . . . . . . . . . . 23

Little Italy Imports . . . . . . . . . . . . 33

Olde Kountry Market . . . . . . . . . . . 22

Pulaski Meat Market . . . . . . . . . . . . 11

Hardware/Lumber/Farm & Home

Lincoln Davies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9

Morgan’s Hardware . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44

Turner Lumber . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36

Wightman Specialty Woods . . . . . . . . . 21

Health and Wellness

Vitality Fitness and Wellness . . . . . . . . . 34


HBE Group, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35

Turnbull Insurance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36

Interior Design/Custom Window Treatments

The Added Touch Drapery . . . . . . . . 24


Raulli’s Iron Works . . . . . . . . . . . . 34


Alison’s Jewelry & Repair . . . . . . . . 25

Fall Hill Bead & Gem . . . . . . . . . . 27

Goldmine Jewelers . . . . . . . . . . . . 31

Lighting Mills Electrical Supply . . . . . . . . . . . 40

Liquor Stores and Wine

Ilion Wine & Spirits . . . . . . . . . . . 19

Prospect Falls Winery . . . . . . . . . . 23

Trenton Station Liquor & Wine . . . . . . . 34

Maple Syrup (See Produce)

Local Meats

Sunnybrook Farm . . . . . . . . . . . . 40


Weekly Adirondack . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

Monuments & Memorials

Yorkville Memorials . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

Natural Food

Cooperstown Naturals . . . . . . . . . . . 44 Peter’s Cornucopia . . . . . . . . . . . 6

Optometrists Towpath

. . . . . . . . . . . . 20

All Seasons Outfitters . . . . . . . . . . . . 29


Urbanik’s Paint & Wallpaper Co. . . . . . . 29

Physical Therapy

Inertia PT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40


DiCastro’s Brick Oven . . . . . . . . . . 13

Primo Pizzeria . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14

Tony’s Pizza . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15

Vision Care
Outdoor Store/Camping/Sports
and Painting Supplies

MWPAI Announces New Director and Chief Curator

Mohawk Ltd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43


Between Us Sisters . . . . . . . . . . . 10

Butternut Barn . . . . . . . . . . . . 17

Produce, Local

Ben & Judy’s Sugarhouse . . . . . . . 10

Horn’s Family Farm . . . . . . . . . . 28

Jewett’s Cheese . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33

Shaw’s Maple Products . . . . . . . . . . 36

Stoltzfus Family Dairy . . . . . . . . . . 7

Tibbits Maple . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24

Quilt and Yarn Shops/Services

Tiger Lily Quilt Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11

Restaurants and Cafés (See also Diners)

Ann St. Deli . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13

Black Stallion Restaurant . . . . . . . . . . . 13

DiCastro’s Brick Oven . . . . . . . . . . . 13

Karam’s Middle East Bakery . . . . . . . 13 Killabrew . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13

Ohio Tavern . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13

Phoenician Restaurant . . . . . . . . . . 14

RoSo’s Cafe & Catering . . . . . . . . . . 14

Route 69 Steakhouse . . . . . . . . . 14

Sammy and Annie Foods . . . . . . . . 14 Tailor and the Cook . . . . . . . . . . . 15

Willie’s The Original Bagel Cafe . . . . . . 15 The Willows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15

UTICA—Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute announces the appointment of Stephen Harrison as Director of the Museum of Art and Chief Curator. Harrison came to Munson-Williams in November 2020 as the Deputy Director of the Museum.

As Director of the Museum, he will plan future exhibitions, en hance collection and interpretation initiatives, and develop stron ger community relationships and collaborations. He will continue to lead the education, curatorial, and registrar departments and support Munson-Williams President and CEO Anna D’Ambro sio with major initiatives, such as an institute-wide master plan, rebranding and Munson-Williams’ strategic five-year plan.

During his tenure at Munson-Williams, Harrison has spear headed major acquisition and deaccession efforts and established a new acquisition fund honoring the memory of Helen Munson Williams. He curated the 2022 Norman Rockwell exhibition, the most-attended summer exhibition in Munson-Williams’ history.

“I’m honored to be taking on this new role with such talented people at the Museum of Art when Munson-Williams is brim ming with so much promise and potential,” Harrison said. “I’ve received such a warm welcome in Utica, and I’m proud to be shar ing one of the best collections of American art in the world with our community and beyond.”

Harrison came to Munson-Williams with more than 25 years of experience, including as the Curator of Decorative Art and De sign at the Cleveland Museum of Art, where he oversaw a premier collection of American and European design. He has also held curatorial positions at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, the Dallas Museum of Art, and the Louisiana State Museum in New Orleans. •

Roofing Contractors

Swarey Brothers Roofing . . . . . . . . . . . . 40

Shoes Karaz Shoes . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20

Signs Whistle Post Creations . . . . . . . . . . . . 17

Storage Sheds & Garages

Pleasant View Structures . . . . . . . . . 6

Tree Services and Tree Farms Rick Turk Tree Service . . . . . . . . . 31

Yogurt Stoltzfus Family Dairy . . . . . . . . . . . 7

Last Month’s Riggie’s Clinton Shopping Spree contest winner: Sally Destefanis of Barneveld

Answer to last month’s puzzle about our local “natural wonder”: Mohawk River

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