Daily Archives: September 1, 2011

Growing up Adirondack by Mitch Lee

Newly-built ship sets sail on summer’s last warm day

It was the last warm summer afternoon before the start of school and as a 10-year-old boy I wanted to make the most of it. My plan was to head to the beach.

I slipped on my sneakers and grabbed my swim trunks from the clothesline.

The late August nights were getting quite chilly and the overnight dew clung to my trunks.

They were just about as damp as when I hung them the day before.

I twisted the excess water, then jogged around the house swinging them in the air to further dry them.

My dog Mutt was not impressed with my running and waited patiently on the porch.

Before we left for the lake, I went to my room and got the model of the ship, The Bounty, which I had recently put together. I wanted to drop it in the lake and make sure it was sea worthy.

I pulled a beach towel out of the dryer and flung it around my neck.

I met Mutt on the porch and with my ship under my arm, off we went.

Mutt ran a few yards ahead of me, and all of a sudden she stopped and began barking like crazy.

I gave a quick look to the left and saw two bear cubs in a dead Spruce tree.

I grabbed Mutt by the collar and dragged her reluctantly down the road.

She was determined to go back to see those cubs, but I was not in the mood to let her spoil my last beautiful day of freedom. Continue reading

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Gary Lee’s Daybreak to Twilight

Beware of Lee freezer: You never know what you’ll find

Well, if we wasn’t wet enough before, it sure is now. I measured over four inches of rain in my rain guage as of noon Sunday, August 28.

We traveled to Rochester for grandson Nathan’s eighth birthday party yesterday (8/27). If it had been today he would have had his entire NASCAR cake to himself.

Nathan is a big NASCAR fan and he watches the roundie-rounders (NASCAR races) every weekend. He’s a man after my brother’s heart. He got a couple of race cars, a race T-shirt, baseballs, ball glove, some books and a rollercoaster track with over 600 pieces as gifts. His dad was putting it together when we left on Saturday. He’s probably still at it.

But his best present was a new lawn sprinkler. It’s the second one he’s received, but this one is much improved over the first. That boy is going to be in the lawn care business for sure.

Nevermind the toys, he had that sprinkler out of the box and hooked up to the hose in a couple of minutes. When he came back in he and I put together the rollercoaster track. We had the car running back and forth across the living room while his dad worked on a super structure that was going to hold the track up.

Granddaughter Rachel came from her new job at JC Penny to catch the end of the party. We hadn’t seen her since Christmas so it was nice to see her. We didn’t make her college graduation from Philadelphia University. She’s growing up very fast in the real world.

This week I went looking for fresh Moose poop for Heidi Kretser of Wildlife Conservation Society who needed some. I thought for sure I would find some around Helldiver Pond where the Moose had been seen for five weeks.

I searched for five hours and all I found was about fifty piles of Bear poop. I believe I spooked the Bear as I heard him crashing around in the brush. The Bear had been eating blueberries, blackberries and lots of greenery.

There was evidence that a Moose had been eating from patch to patch, but no poop. I followed every Moose path around the pond but still came up empty-handed. When I came out to the campsite at the trailhead I ran into a fella who told me he had photographed some the day before.

The next day he collected what he had found and brought it to the Inlet Town Hall, as he didn’t know where I lived. He got directions to my house and when I came home that evening there was a bag of fresh Moose poop on my doorstep. Karen didn’t open the bag as she never knows what might show up on our porch.

Thanks Jerry. It’s safe in the freezer as I await further instructions. (Note: Karen doesn’t go into my freezer for the same reason she doesn’t peek into the bags!)

The pink pond lilies in my pond have been putting out flowers all summer. This week there were three in a cluster not more than a foot apart. They close up at night and come out the next day when the sun hits them.

This wet weather will cause a setback for the Monarch caterpillars that were chomping on the milkweeds. They have gone through periods like this before so I’m sure they will make it through. They just hang on the underside of a milkweed leaf until it’s over, then they come out and start chomping again.

The caterpillars, which have gone into chrysalis, should also be okay as they just wait for some more sunshine before emerging as beautiful butterflies. I haven’t seen as many caterpillars in the area as I have in past summers. However, in other areas I’ve seen several munching on the milkweed leaves.

Many times a female will lay several eggs on a single plant. If I find one of these plants I move some of these caterpillars to other plants to give them a chance. If they run out of leaves to eat they will munch on the pods, if there are any.

Many of the flowers didn’t get pollinated as I haven’t seen many pods on the plants. If the caterpillars run out of food they will climb down and search for some at a nearby plant.

Birds are migrating south, but that’s another story. See ya.


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Ken Thibado: Local jewelry maker’s design included in ‘best of’ collection

WingNut Industries is proud to announce the inclusion of Ken Thibado within 21st Century Jewelry: The Best of the 500 Series, by Lark Books.

The jewelry creations of Ken Thibado had previously been included in 500 Earrings, and twice in 500 Brooches, both published by Lark.

When reached for comment, the artist responded by saying, “Awesome!”

This is the ninth book to feature Ken Thibado creations.

Currently, the artist has a line of jewelry featured at Deb Burrington’s 3040 Gallery on Main Street, in Old Forge.

His work can also be viewed at kenthibado.com.

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Afghanistan: LCPL Casey Venetz begins seven-month deployment

Lance Corporal Casey J. Venetz was recently deployed with the United States Marine Corp. to a base in Southern Afghanistan.

The duration of his deployment should be seven months.

Lance Corporal Venetz has been a marine since June 2009. His duty station is in Cherry Point, North Carolina.

His Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) training is in the installation and repair of satellite equipment.

Casey would love to hear from his friends in Old Forge, however, he does not know if he will be able to write everyone back.

His address is: LCPL Venetz, Casey J., MWCS-28 DETB, Unit 78072, FPO-AE09510-8072.

Casey is a 2007 graduate of the Town of Webb School and is the son of Pat and Nancy Venetz of Old Forge.


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Friday service set for Catherine Luvera, 90

Mrs. Catherine “Kay” (Marafioti) Luvera, 90, passed away unexpectedly, with her loving husband by her side, on Tuesday, August 30, 2011 at St. Elizabeth Medical Center.

Kay was born in Utica, May 29, 1921, a daughter of Pasquale and Antoinette (Condo) Marafioti.

She was educated in local schools and attended T.R. Proctor High School.

On February 20, 1954 she was joined in marriage to Vincent “Jim” Luvera.

In earlier years, Kay worked as a sales associate at Alex-ander’s Dress Shop in Utica. More recently, Jim and Kay ran Kate’s Diner in Old Forge, NY for over twenty years.

Her amazing work ethic and magnetic personality made the business a very successful and comfortable place to go.

Following retirement, Jim and Kay spent their winters in Arizona and their summers in Eagle Bay, where they have maintained a summer home for thirty-five years.

More recently they wintered in Boca Raton, FL.

Kay was a very loving wife who devoted all of herself to caring for her husband.

She was always there for him and her presence will be deeply missed.

She is survived by her beloved husband Jim; two brothers and sisters-in-law, George and Mayme Marafioti, and Sam and Anne Marafioti; her sister-in-law, Carmella Giruzzi; and many beloved nieces, nephews, and cousins here and in Canada.

She was predeceased by three brothers, Rocco Lupino, Anthony Marafioti, and Fred Marafioti; and one sister, Carmella Caruso.

Her Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Friday, September 2 at 10 a.m. at St. Mary of Mt. Carmel/Blessed Sacrament Parish. Interment will be in St. Agnes Cemetery.

There are no calling hours. The family will receive visitors at the conclusion of mass.

Arrangements are with The Matt Funeral Home of Utica. Online expressions of sympathy can be forwarded to: MattFuneralHome.com


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Online travelogue writer visits for local Adirondack adventure

Jeanette Lenoir, a broadcast reporter with WIBX-950 AM and an on-line Travelogue writer, was in the Old Forge area last Thursday through Monday to gather information for an upcoming travel destination article.

It was Lenoir’s second visit to the area following an invitation by Old Forge Publicity Director Mike Farmer to come and experience all it has to offer.

Several weeks prior to her current visit, Lenoir took a kayak trip with Tickner’s Moose River Canoe Trips and wrote about it on her Travelogue, “StayCations,” which is posted on the WIBX website and submitted to national and international news agencies. Continue reading

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Peg Sykes’ quilt takes first place at NYS Fair

Margaret (Peg) Sykes of Woodgate recently won Best of Show at the Boonville Oneida County Fair for her quilt, Scraps ‘N Logs.

The quilt was entered in the Adult Crafts category, which included quilting, crocheting, knitting, cross stitch, woodworking and other handiwork.

As the winner at the Oneida County Fair, she was eligible to enter her quilt in the New York State Fair to compete with other first prize winners of County Fairs across the state.

The quilt ended up taking first place honors at the New York State Fair.

Sykes said she named the quilt “Scraps ‘N Logs” because it was created in the log cabin design from her own fabric scraps.

“As I’m quilting or sewing, I cut my pieces and I put them in piles. When I have enough, I make a quilt,” she said.

According to Sykes, more than 3,000 pieces were used in the prize-winning quilt that took her less than six months to complete.

Sykes said she has been quilting since she was 16, when she made her first quilt from her mother’s sewing scraps as a wedding gift for her sister and her husband.

Sykes and her husband, Bud planned to attend the State Fair this week to see her prize-winning quilt hanging among the other entries.


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