Archive | January, 2013

Sloatsburg Considers FIre Gear Upgrade

Posted on 28 January 2013 by Editor

Sloatsburg may not be getting a signature project soon but it may get more gear for the Sloatsburg Volunteer Fire Department. And good gear helps save lives.

At the Village Board meeting last Tuesday, SFD Second Assistant Chief Chris Morse made an appearance with a small contingent of firefighters to present the board with  an itemized list of gear and equipment upgrades the department needs to bring the department into compliance with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards and to meet various other state and agency requirements. Morse also spoke at the board’s January 8 meeting. Continue Reading

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East Ramapo School Woes

Posted on 26 January 2013 by Editor

The East Ramapo School District finds itself sinking deeper into discord and community angst. Journal News reporter Khurram Saeed interviewed the two East Ramapo School Board members who resigned abruptly this past week — Stephen Price, a 20 year board member, and Suzanne Young-Mercer, elected in 2010, both submitted their resignation letters to East Ramapo District Clerk Cathy Russell on Monday. Continue Reading

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Comedy Comes To Characters

Posted on 25 January 2013 by Editor

Eric Albert has been been quietly building a comedy home base in Sloatsburg, and Friday night will be the one year coming out celebration for Characters Comedy Night.

On the last Friday of the month for the last year, Albert has turned the upstairs room at the restaurant into a laugh factory, attended by an enthusiastic hometown crowd and people who come in for the shows from the surrounding area. Continue Reading

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Politician Gets Caught Competing

Posted on 24 January 2013 by Editor

They don’t call politics a contact sport for nothing. Dylan Skriloff over at the Rockland County Times takes no prisoners when reporting a story. Skriloff’s journalistic stock is rising as a source of breaking news and inside information. The young editor and associate publisher of the Rockland Times has just landed a new radio gig as host of the Thursday edition of WRCR 1300 AM’s show — the Raymour & Flanigan Community News Hour. Continue Reading

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A Tree Grows Poolside

Posted on 23 January 2013 by Editor

All those Sloatsburg Community Pool members out there, here’s a chance to have your two cents counted. Sloatsburg Village Trustee Peter Akey, who shares village cultural and recreational oversight, is soliciting community advice on tree replacement at the village pool. Continue Reading

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Suffern Senior Is Science Search Semifinalist

Posted on 17 January 2013 by Editor

Suffern High School senior Ben Silver was named an Intel Science Talent Search 2013 Semifinalist, which is the nation’s oldest and most prestigious pre-college science competition. Silver is one of 300 semifinalists selected from more than 1,700 entrants representing some 190 high schools in 30 states and one U.S. high school abroad.

The Intel Science Talent Search brings together some of the best young scientific minds in the United States to compete for $1.25 million in awards each year.

Silver entered the competition with the project, The Relationship between White Matter Integrity and Self-Awareness in Multiple Sclerosis using Diffusion Tensor Imaging, a project he developed as part of his participation in Scientific & Technological Investigative Research (STIR), a three-year science research program governed by State University of New York at Albany. STIR students design and conduct authentic, graduate-level research with the guidance of a professional mentor. Over its 17-year history at Suffern High School, STIR has produced one Intel Finalist and more than 10 Semifinalists.

“With the Intel competition, you read about kids with these incredible projects,” said Silver. “To see my name and project on that list is such an honor.”

Silver’s selection as a semifinalist wins him a $1,000 award from the Intel Foundation, with another $1,000 going to support the STIR program at Suffern High School.

“We are immensely proud of Ben and the research he has conducted,” said Suffern Principal Pat Breen. “Suffern High School has a proud tradition of nurturing student achievement in science, technology, engineering and math and I look forward to congratulating future winners.”

“To be named one of 300 semifinalists is quite an honor,” said Suffern STIR teacher Wendell Hala. “It’s getting hard to win in this ‘STEM Age’ as more schools develop their programs. But Ben has been a pleasure to work with over the last three years; as a person, he has a lot to offer beyond the science.”

Forty finalists will be announced on January 23; these students will have the opportunity to compete for additional awards and attend the Intel Science Institute in Washington, DC in March, where the students will compete for $630,000 in awards provided by the Intel Foundation. Each finalist receives at least $7,500, while the top winner will be awarded $100,000.

“Each year, the Intel Science Talent Search honors high school seniors poised to lead in U.S. scientific innovation,” said Wendy Hawkins, executive director of the Intel Foundation. “This year, these young scientists are tackling some of the world’s greatest challenges in topics ranging from environmental conservation solutions to medical treatments.”

Photo and information courtesy of Jennifer Citrolo, Ramapo Central Schools.


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A Bit Of Sloatsburg Dinner Theater

Posted on 15 January 2013 by Editor

Local members of the Sloatsburg Senior Center enjoyed the patter of an old-fashioned dinner theater show last Wednesday when the trio that makes up A Touch of Sinatra entertained the center. Continue Reading

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Tuxedo School Looks To The Future

Posted on 13 January 2013 by Editor

With a bold look to the future, Tuxedo may have not only created a solution for the long-term viability of its high school, but positioned the town as a beacon for higher education. The Tuxedo Union Free School District held an open forum last week in which the district’s consultant presented its finding on the future of the school, and the recommendations for George F. Baker High School called for a dynamic repositioning of the high school.

“We wanted out of the box,” said Tuxedo School District Superintendent Carol Lomascolo. “That’s what they (Public Consulting Group) gave us. It does raise the bar, raising the academic standards of this school,” Lomascolo said, referring to the recommendations by the school district’s consultant.

The whole Tuxedo school saga started when Greenwood Lake School District decided to end its exclusive relationship with George F. Baker last year. Greenwood Lake does not have a high school of its own and district kids have attended George Baker for the past 30 years. The Greenwood Lake School Board opened bidding from other school districts, with the final result being a program called Parental Choice, where GWL students entering 9th grade in the 2013 school year have the choice to attend one of three available high schools — Warwick Valley High School, Chester Academy or George F. Baker.

GWL students represent nearly 85% of students currently attending George Baker. GWL will release student decision numbers later next week in terms of how many students chose Warkwick, Chester and Tuxedo for the fall session.

With PCG’s latest recommendations, the Tuxedo superintendent suggested that rumors about the possible near-death of George Baker are premature. The new direction the high school is entertaining could make Tuxedo a preferred educational destination, drawing students from other districts as well as internationally. Lomascolo said that George Baker could accommodate up to 500 students and that space limitations would determine the number of students who could be accepted into future programs.

The PCG presentation gave three distinct but interconnected options for George Baker, options that would not only galvanize attention and attract new high school age students to the school, but position the school as an attractive academy of learning.

During Thursday’s open forum at George F. Baker auditorium, PCG stressed the success and long-term viability of the high school if it were to adopt at least two of their three recommendations, which are:

* Establish GFBHS as a Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics or STEM Academy;

* Apply to become a conversion charter school; and/or

* Invite participation of New York International University Center (NYIUC), which would allow for the creation of the center’s first high school program and give Tuxedo students the opportunity to take college classes in coordination with the center.

“The consultants are saying if we do two or three of these, their feeling is that we would be very successful,” Lomascolo was quoted as saying in a recent Photo-News article by Nancy Kriz. “I absolutely believe this is a unique opportunity and gives us a long-term plan and sets us apart from surrounding districts. I do believe what they are saying, that we will be turning people away in a few years, based on their recommendations.”

Currently there are no STEM academies within a 50 mile radius of George F. Baker. If acted on, each of the three options would open up George Baker to students from other districts, keep the school as a small, dynamic high school and integrate STEM and NYIUC curriculum as part of the school’s arts and humanities studies — essentially creating schools within a school that offer specialized classes. All of the options presented would also afford George Baker additional federal and state funding opportunities.

With each of the options, or a mix of all three, Tuxedo high school students would be provided flexible, dynamic educational opportunities that they could tailor to their interests and needs. What the school may lose in numbers of GWL students, it might make up in becoming a beacon to other students who want to attend a cutting-edge high school that offers a unique accelerated curriculum.

Depending on which option George Baker decides to incorporate, the school would focus on different planning and state guidelines. Converting the school to a STEM academy could take place as early as September, while converting to a charter school would take more time as it would involve steering through NY State’s qualifying process.

PCG’s recommendations are currently under review by the Tuxedo school board, which is waiting for additional community feedback. A final meeting is set for February 6, in which community questions will be addressed, after which, the board will make its final decision on the future direction of the high school.

Lomascolo said the charter option would keep the current board intact. “It’s a public school that has chosen to convert to a charter school. The unions and teachers stay in place and we follow the guidelines of a charter school,” Lomascolo said. STEM and UYIUC options might include the addition of faculty with more specialized accreditation.

Tuxedo parents can submit questions related to PCG’s new recommendations, which will be answered during a two-session open forum at George F. Baker High School Auditorium on Wednesday, February 6  at 1:30 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. Thereafter, the Tuxedo Union Free School Board will convene to make its decision on school options. Please visit Tuxedo Union Free District website for more information.


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Local Raffle Supports The Fire Department

Posted on 11 January 2013 by Editor

If you’ve visited Grab & Go in central Sloatsburg lately, odds are you’ve met Mike Williams. Mike tends the counter most days and along with his brother Richie helps run the local beer store. Grab & Go has greatly expanded its selection of craft beers lately and is working on several new offerings, including beer by the cup.

The store is now holding a raffle to support the Sloatsburg Volunteer Fire Department, with tickets set at $2. The raffle prize is your very own True Brew home brew kit, complete with all the items necessary to attempt your own craft concoction.

“It’s a rewarding hobby and the proceeds go to our local fire department, who are always running towards disaster,” said Mike Williams. “With the home brew kit, you can experience the satisfaction you get when opening that first bottle of your own brew creation.”

Grab & Go also launched its online site, created by Richie Williams and aimed at those beer lovers who just want to take their time and browse for something rich and malty. Williams uploaded a good amount of the store’s stock for viewing, from the latest craft beers to pints, domestic brands, and new sales items.

Grab & Go has scheduled a special day devoted to beer lovers. The store will host a Craft Beer Tasting Event Saturday, January 26 from 12 noon to 3 p.m. The event is sponsored by Defiant Brewing, a local micro brewery located in Pearl River, NY, which will be on hand with several kegs of its very own brew for beer connoisseurs to sample. The very definition of craft beer involves small, independently brewed suds with a low production but higher quality beer.  So, here’s a chance to try some out with a simple trip into Sloatsburg.

Buy a few raffle tickets while you’re at the store to show your support for the Sloatsburg Fire Department, the guys always driving big trucks fast towards danger.

Grab & Go Craft Beer Tasting Event, sponsored by Defiant Brewing, takes place Saturday, January 26 from 12 noon to 3 p.m. Call 845.712.5444 for more information.

Photo of Mike Williams courtesy of My Meals And Deals.


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Students Sing Winter Songs

Posted on 10 January 2013 by Editor

It’s the season of winter song as school choirs show their stuff this week. Elementary schools throughout the Ramapo Central School District celebrate with Winter Concerts Thursday and Friday.

Sloatsburg Elementary School led off the week when proud parents, grandparents and siblings crowded the gymnasium for the school’s K-2 Winter Concert Wednesday morning. Led by music teacher Alice Biss, kindergarten, first- and second-grade students delivered spirited performances of international songs and old favorites.

“Ms. Biss, our vocal music teacher at Sloatsburg, does an excellent job preparing students for these special concerts,” said SES Principal Eric Baird. “As their principal, it is always great to observe the genuine enthusiasm and pride that the children convey while they are performing for an audience.”

Viola and RP Connor Elementary Schools have their concerts Thursday morning, while Cherry Lane and Monetebello hold their Winter Concerts Friday morning. Additionally, Suffern Middle School will hold its Art Show and Music Night Thursday evening, with the music starting at 7:30 p.m. A followup Music Night at the middle school will be held Monday, January 14 beginning at 7 p.m.

Photo and information courtesy of Jennifer Citrolo, Ramapo Central Schools.


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9:00 am Veteran Holiday Baskets @ Sloatsburg Village Hall
Veteran Holiday Baskets @ Sloatsburg Village Hall
Dec 16 @ 9:00 am – 11:00 am
Veteran Holiday Baskets @ Sloatsburg Village Hall | Sloatsburg | New York | United States
A special Holiday Food Basket giveaway will take place on Saturday, December 16, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Village of Sloatsburg Fire Hall. Items include frozen turkey and fixings and desert for[...]
2:00 pm Music for Winter Solstice @ Harmony Hall
Music for Winter Solstice @ Harmony Hall
Dec 17 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Music for Winter Solstice @ Harmony Hall | Sloatsburg | New York | United States
As the days grow shorter, we prepare to welcome the Winter Solstice on Sunday, December 17th from 2-4 PM at the mansion! Join Geoff Welch and musical guests guitarist Alpha Halvorsen and percussionist Christina Stefenelli[...]