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Otsego County Water Quality Coordinating Committee
967 County Highway 33, Cooperstown, NY 13326
(607) 547-8778

For Immediate Release

Lakes Festival to be held at Glimmerglass State Park

COOPERSTOWN– The 9th Otsego Lakes Festival will be held in Glimmerglass State Park in Springfield onSaturday, June 10, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. This year’s event is being coordinated with the Clark Sports Center’s 4th Annual “Race the Lake” marathon and half-marathon around Otsego Lake, which ends in the park.

Organized under the umbrella of the Otsego County Water Quality Coordinating Committee, the Otsego Lakes Festival celebrates the value of our lakes, rivers, streams and ponds, and is an opportunity for visitors to learn about the many organizations in Otsego County working to protect these important resources. WQCC members will be on hand to distribute information and literature, discuss water quality issues one on one, and provide an overview of the various programs offered to help ensure the continued well-being of our water resources.

Activities this year include free paddle board demonstrations and lessons by Canoe & Kayak Rentals and Sales of Portlandville, “touch tanks” featuring live fish, plants and aquatic invertebrates found in Otsego Lake, offered by SUNY-Oneonta Biological Field Station and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, adventure activities by the Clark Sports Center, and a guided nature walk in the park. A DJ will provide music throughout the day, and there will be food and beer sampling from local vendors. Admission to Otsego Lakes Festival is free; a special event parking pass for the festival is available on the OCCA website.

Exhibitors, vendors, and sponsors are still needed. Confirmed exhibitors and vendors at the Otsego Lakes Festival thus far include Otsego County Conservation Association, Otsego Soil and Water Conservation District, Otsego Lake Association, Otsego Land Trust, SUNY Oneonta Biological Field Station, Canoe & Kayak Rentals and Sales, and the Dave Brandt Chapter of Trout Unlimited. For information on how to sponsor or exhibit/vend at the event, visit http://occainfo.org/otsego-lakes-festival/.

For more about the Otsego Lakes Festival, or for further details on sponsorship and volunteer opportunities, contact OCCA Executive Director Leslie Orzetti at (607) 547-4488.

For information on Race the Lake, including how to register, contact Event Director Doug McCoy at the Clark Sports Center, (607) 547-2800, ext. 111.

The Otsego County Water Quality Coordinating Committee was established in 1992 as a sub-committee of the Otsego County Soil and Water Conservation District. It is comprised of a diverse group of people representing state and local government agencies, non-profit organizations, academic institutions, and lake associations. These members have technical expertise and knowledge and are committed to working to improve and maintain the quality of water in Otsego County through the reduction of nonpoint source pollution within its boundaries. The Otsego Lakes Festival is designed to educate the public on the importance of water resource protection.

The Clark Sports Center opened in 1891 as the Alfred Corning Clark Gymnasium. In 1983, The Clark Foundation announced its intention to build a larger facility. The community’s growth and the need for modernized facilities dictated a much larger building. With the dedication on October 5, 1986, the new ACG Gymnasium opened on Susquehanna Avenue. In June of 1994, the ACG Gymnasium was renamed The Clark Sports Center. In 2015, the Sports Center began a renovation and expansion project adding 56,000 square feet to the existing building. The new facility will open on June 17, 2017.

It is the primary mission of The Clark Sports Center to take an active role in the health, fitness, recreational and educational life of the Village of Cooperstown and its surrounding area. Specific objectives include safe, high quality youth, adult, and family programming as well as outreach programs aimed at addressing the needs of the underserved local populations.

The Otsego County Conservation Association will be hosting an early morning bird walk, led by Delaware-Otsego Audubon Society co-president Becky Gretton, at Mohican Farm in Springfield on Saturday, May 13, from 7 a.m. to 9 a.m.

“Mohican Farm has woods, fields, gardens and wetlands,” said Jeff O’Handley, OCCA’s program director. “As a result, it has a nice variety of birds. And Becky is really good at finding them.”

Participants should bring binoculars, a field guide, and should dress for the weather. The program begins at OCCA’s Mohican Farm office, 7207 State Highway 80, Cooperstown, at 7 a.m. Space is limited. To attend, either call OCCA at (607) 547-4488 or register at http://occainfo.org/program-and-event-sign-up-form/.

Founded in 1968, Founded in 1968, OCCA is a private, non-profit membership group dedicated to promoting the appreciation and sustainable use of Otsego County’s natural resources through education, advocacy, resource management, research, planning, and practice. For more information on OCCA, or to donate, visit www.occainfo.org

The Otsego County Conservation Association/Mohican Farm Be Informed Lecture Series continues with a talk and demonstration on Integrated Pest Management for homeowners on Wednesday, May 17 at Mohican Farm in Springfield. The program begins at 6:30 p.m.

“Integrated Pest Management for the Home Greenhouse and Garden” focuses on how the casual gardener can reduce damage from a variety of garden pests. The program, led by Bob Sutherland, manager of The Clark Foundation’s Mohican Farm, will include a lecture and Powerpoint presentation, along with a visit to Mohican Farm’s greenhouse to see some of the techniques put into action.

“For many gardeners, pest management is reactive,” said Sutherland. “People see a problem and react, usually with pesticides. Integrated Pest Management is proactive, and relies much more on prevention.”

Prior to joining The Clark Foundation, Sutherland was an instructor at the Plant Science Department at SUNY Cobleskill. Under his management, Mohican Farm has become a leader in The Clark Foundation’s sustainability efforts.

The Be Informed Lecture Series is a partnership between OCCA and Mohican Farm. The series kicked off in February with a presentation on Climate Smart Communities. The program, which takes place in the workshop at Mohican Farm, 7207 State Highway 80, Springfield, is free, but space is limited. Those interested in attending should pre-register by visiting http://occainfo.org/program-and-event-sign-up-form/ or by calling (607) 547-4488.

Founded in 1968, Founded in 1968, OCCA is a private, non-profit membership group dedicated to promoting the appreciation and sustainable use of Otsego County’s natural resources through education, advocacy, resource management, research, planning, and practice. For more information on OCCA, or to donate, visit www.occainfo.org

COOPERSTOWN—The public is invited to the dedication of the Carl B. Good Boat Wash Station on Fish Road in Lakefront Park in Cooperstown on Friday, May 12. The dedication will take place at 5 p.m. at the station. Speakers at this brief ceremony and plaque unveiling will include representatives from the Village of Cooperstown, the Otsego Lake Association, and Otsego County Conservation Association.

Good, who passed away in March of 2016, moved to Cooperstown in 2002 with his wife, Pam. He became immediately involved, giving countless hours to the Village he loved by attending public meetings, joining multiple organizations, and serving on many committees and boards.  Good was especially known for his devotion to Otsego Lake. A long-time board member of the Otsego Lake Association, Good was active on many of OLA’s committees over the years, and was especially concerned with the impact of aquatic invasive species, serving as volunteer supervisor for the boat inspection program at the Village boat launch for more than a decade. Good’s oversight and stewardship of Lake Otsego also included service on Village and regional lake committees. In recognition of Good’s many years of dedication to Otsego Lake and its water quality, the station will be named in his honor.

The boat wash station will help prevent the spread of aquatic invasive plants and animals into or out of Otsego Lake. It was completed in late summer of 2016, with funding and support from the Village of Cooperstown, the Otsego Lake Association, OCCA, and by a grant from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Invasive Species Spread Prevention Grants Program through appropriations from the New York State Environmental Protection Fund (EPF), will be named in honor of Carl for his years of dedication to Otsego Lake.

COOPERSTOWN—Farmers will have two opportunities to drop off their agricultural plastic for recycling under a special program offered by Otsego County Solid Waste Department, the Otsego County Soil & Water Conservation District, Otsego County Conservation Association, and Casella Waste Solutions. Ag plastic will be collected Saturday, May 6, at the Southern Transfer Station in Oneonta, and Thursday, May 11 at the Northern Transfer Station in Cooperstown, from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. both days. Acceptable material include bale wrap, silage bags, bunker cover, greenhouse covers, and wood pellet bags. Material must be sorted by type, and should be relatively clean and dry. The collection is free, but pre-registration is requested. For questions or to register, contact Jeff O’Handley at OCCA, (607)282-4087.

The Otsego County Conservation Association’s annual “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” Garage Sale will be held on Saturday and Sunday, April 29 and 30 in the Cooperstown Farmers’ Market building at 101 Main Street (in Pioneer Alley), Cooperstown. Sale hours are from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on both days. Unsold items will be available for free on Monday, May 1 from10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

OCCA will be accepting donations of items for the garage sale April 26 and 27 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Friday, April 28 from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Farmers’ Market building. All donations are tax deductible; OCCA will provide a donation voucher upon request.

Now in its 15th year, the OCCA Garage Sale offers hundreds of items for sale at great prices, including clothes, books, sporting goods, housewares, furniture and more. In addition to raising funds for OCCA’s countywide environmental programs and initiatives, the garage sale benefits the environment through source reduction. Those with questions, or who would like more information about donations or volunteering to assist with the event, should call OCCA Executive Director Leslie Orzetti at (607) 547-4488 or e-mail director@occainfo.org for further details.

Founded in 1968, OCCA is a private, non-profit membership group dedicated to promoting the appreciation and sustainable use of Otsego County’s natural resources through education, advocacy, resource management, research, planning, and practice. For more information on OCCA, or to donate, visit www.occainfo.org.

The Otsego County Conservation Association will be holding their annual ‘Reduce, Reuse, Recycle’ Garage Sale on April 29 and 30 at the Farmers’ Market Building in Cooperstown. The event will run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on both days.

Furniture, clothing, books, housewares and sporting goods are among the items that will be available. Proceeds from the sale help support OCCA’s environmental programs.

Donations of items will be accepted at the Cooperstown Farmers’ Market building in Pioneer Alley, 101 Main Street, Cooperstown, from April 26 through 28 between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. For further information, contact OCCA at (607) 547-4488, or visit www.occainfo.org.

Founded in 1968, OCCA is a private, non-profit membership group dedicated to promoting the appreciation and sustainable use of Otsego County’s natural resources through education, advocacy, resource management, research, and planning. For more information on OCCA, or to donate, visit www.occainfo.org

Otsego County Conservation Association’s annual Earth Festival returns this Saturday with vendors, exhibitors, recycling, a talk on local climate, gardening workshops, yoga and more. The event runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Milford Central School.

Now in its thirteenth year, Earth Festival is an environmentally-focused, interactive event featuring exhibits, activities, vendors and entertainment. This year includes two pre-festival events. Earth Festival Movie Night, sponsored by Otsego 2000, features the new Josh Fox film, How to Let Go of the World and Learn to Love All the Things Climate Can’t Change. The movie will be shown on Friday, April 21, at 7 p.m. at the Herbert B. Garman, Jr. Performing Arts Center at Milford Central School. On Saturday morning, Delaware-Otsego Audubon Society board member Bob Donnelly leads a pre-festival bird walk. The bird walk leaves the school parking lot at 9 a.m. Admission to movie night, the pre-festival bird walk, and Earth Festival itself is free.

The Master Gardener Volunteers of Cornell Cooperative Extension Schoharie and Otsego Counties will be hosting Spring Garden Day in conjunction with Earth Festival. Spring Garden Day features workshops on a variety of gardening topics suitable for those both new and experienced to gardening. There is a $10 fee to participate in Spring Garden Day workshops. Contact CCE at 607-547-2536 for information and details.

This year, Earth Festival will feature guest speaker Beth Renckens Gibbons. A Cooperstown native and Managing Director of the American Society of Adaptation Professionals, Gibbons will present “Understanding and Preparing for Climate Change in Otsego County.” This talk will provide a brief overview of the climate system, then dive deeply into current and anticipated changes due to climate change in our area. Gibbons’ talk will begin at 12:15 p.m.in the auditorium.

The traditional Earth Festival exhibitor and vendor fair opens at 11 a.m. in the gymnasium. This year, nearly 40 earth-friendly businesses, organizations, and individuals will be on hand to provide information, products and activities. Food will be available from Origins Café, of Cooperstown, and Jamaican Creations, of Oneonta.

Also returning this year is the EcoArt/Trendy Trash display and contest. The challenge is to create something useful and/or artistic from items that have outlived their original purpose. Students can enter the contest for free; it costs $5 for adults. Entry forms are available at http://occainfo.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/2017-ECOART-ENTRY-FORM-Google-Docs.pdf. Entries can be dropped off at Milford Central School between 9:30 and 11:00 a.m. on the day of the event.

Back for a second year are yoga sessions for beginners and children, led by local, certified instructors. Katherine Walters, of Love Your Life Yoga & Community in Milford will lead two sessions for adults, while Karla Andela will lead a session for children. Yoga sessions will be held in the small gym at the school. Mats will be provided. Yoga is free, though pre-registration is appreciated. Pre-register using the form at http://occainfo.org/calendar/earth-festival-2017/.

Recycling is an important part of taking care of the Earth, and Earth Festival delivers on that count, as well. OCCA is again offering special recycling opportunities for Styrofoam (clean and white only), wood pellet bags, inkjet cartridges, tennis balls, pens and markers, natural wine corks and monofilament fishing line. The Lions Club of Cooperstown will be collecting eyeglasses, and Soles to Share, a non-profit organization run by students from Cooperstown High School, will be collecting shoes. Free document shredding will be provided by Empire Recycling’s Confidata Shredding Truck from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Earth Festival 2017 is presented by Otsego County Conservation Association, with support from Five Star Subaru, Central NY Mobile Marketing, and Otsego 2000. For further information, visit www.occainfo.org, call (607) 547-4488, or e-mail director@occainfo.org.

 

A healthy earth begins with a healthy body. Learn how to achieve this through yoga at Earth Festival 2017. Sessions will be hosted in the Milford Central School small gym by certified yoga instructors Katherine Walters, of Love Your Life Fitness, and Karla Andela.

Adult yoga classes, led by Walters, will run approximately 45 to 60 minutes. “Yoga for Beginners and Beyond” is a mixed-level class, and will begin at 11 a.m. A class specifically for beginners will be held at 1 p.m.

Coming from decades of teaching fitness and dance, Walters knew her whole world would change the morning tears of joy fell onto a borrowed yoga mat in class, inspiring her certification with Beth Shaw’s YogaFit and, a few years later, the 200-hour Kripalu Yoga Teacher Training. Walters said she feels eternally grateful for the opportunity to study with masters including Suddha, Rolf Gates and Priti Robyn Ross. She blends her passion and devotion with creativity in leading intelligently designed practices with kindness and compassion, and has a gift for connecting with her students in a way that encourages their inner radiance to shine.

Andela’s children’s yoga class will be held from 2:30 to 3:00 p.m. A 200-hour Kripalu certified instructor, Andela has over two years’ experience teaching experience in Cooperstown and along the Appalachian Trail. Parents are required to stay during the session and are encouraged to participate.

Yoga classes are free, though pre-registration is preferred. Call (607) 547-4488 or register online athttp://occainfo.org/program-and-event-sign-up-form/

Other activities at Earth Festival include a pre-festival bird walk with Delaware-Otsego Audubon Society; Spring Garden Day, held by the Master Gardener Volunteers of Cornell Cooperative Extension Schoharie and Otsego Counties; the EcoArt contest; a pre-festival movie night; a talk on climate change by Beth Renckens Gibbons, and the exhibitor vendor fair.

Earth Festival is a free environmentally-focused, interactive event featuring exhibits, activities, vendors and entertainment, all with a fun, earth-friendly twist. Financial contributions are most welcome, and an open invitation to earth-friendly exhibitors, food, and retail vendors is extended. Earth Festival 2017 is presented by Otsego County Conservation Association with support from Five Star Subaru and Central New York Mobile Marketing. For further information, visit http://occainfo.org/earth-festival/, or call (607) 547-4488 or e-mail director@occainfo.org.

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Styrofoam, tennis balls, wood pellets and more will be collected for recycling at the thirteenth annual Earth Festival on April 22, at Milford Central School. The event runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“Although more items can be recycled than ever before, most communities don’t have organized programs for collecting beyond traditionally-recycled items,” said Leslie Orzetti, executive director of the Otsego County Conservation Association. “We’re happy to provide members of the community the option to dispose of material that would otherwise end up in the landfill.”

The following items will be collected at Earth Festival: clean, white Styrofoam, empty inkjet cartridges, cell phones and other small (up to tablet sized) electronics, tennis balls, wood pellet bags, and used monofilament fishing line, and natural cork from wine bottles. As part of the TerraCycle recycling program, OCCA will also be collecting oral care products (including used toothbrushes and toothbrush packaging, empty toothpaste tubes, and dental floss and dental tape containers) and writing implements (used pens, markers, highlighters and mechanical pencils).

Martha Clarvoe, chair of OCCA’s Recycling Committee and a member of the Earth Festival Planning Committee, said it’s especially important to follow directions when bringing Styrofoam to Earth Festival for recycling.

“For the second year, our Styrofoam is going to Madison County to be recycled as part of their program,” Clarvoe said. “They can’t take colored Styrofoam or packing peanuts. Only rigid foam with a number six recycling triangle, or identical to foam with a number six recycling triangle can be accepted.” She added that Styrofoam should be brought to Earth Festival in clear plastic bags.

OCCA is not alone in collecting items at Earth Festival. The Lion’s Club of Cooperstown will be collecting eyeglasses, and Soles to Share, a non-profit run by Cooperstown High School students, will be collecting shoes to distribute to those in need.

Once again, Empire Recycling will be on hand with their Confidata paper shredding service for free disposal of confidential household or business documents. The Confidata shredder truck will be in the school parking lot, just outside the entrance to Earth Festival, and will be available from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. All other recycling will be available from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

All recycling services are free, though donations to help support Earth Festival are welcome.

Earth Festival is an environmentally-focused, interactive event featuring exhibits, activities, vendors and entertainment, all with a fun, earth-friendly twist. Earth Festival is presented by Otsego County Conservation Association and Central NY Mobile Marketing in collaboration with Otsego County Chamber of Commerce. For more information, call (607) 547-4488, or visit occainfo.org.

Founded in 1968, OCCA is a private, non-profit membership group dedicated to promoting the appreciation and sustainable use of Otsego County’s natural resources through education, advocacy, resource management, research, planning, and practice. For more information on OCCA, or to donate, visit www.occainfo.org.

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