Friday, December 21, 2007


It's the day of

"The Winter Solstice"

Welcome Yule!


It's nearly 19 degrees. No new snow.

  • Friday: Mostly cloudy. A poke or two of sunshine possible. High in the low 30s.
  • Friday Night: Mostly cloudy. Low in the low 20s.
  • Saturday: Clouds, some sun and a chance of freezing drizzle overnight. High: 35, Low: 30
  • Sunday: Any freezing drizzle changing over to all rain. Rain ending as a period of snow after sunset. Breezy. High: 40, Low: 27

Rollerskating at Madison Lake? Hank Gardner remembers, too!


Blog-readers seem to be enjoying the Scenic side of Winter.

"The Caves" at Forge Hollow,

maples on Brothertown Road ...

and the historic little law office - schoolhouse on Tower Street.

" Hurry up! Throw another one!"

("Fetch" - with snowballs.)

Snowmobilers rendezvous at Nice 'n Easy in Sangerfield.

More and more decorations: this, at the Mowreys' on Sanger Avenue,

on Babbott Avenue .......

West Bacon Street ......

and at Val & Ron's in Forge Hollow.


But then there's the other side of Winter:

it's not quite as enjoyable!


But the weather will be decent ....

and there's plenty to do:


9 - 12 at Foodking

sponsored by the



and then .........

Seating's limited, so phone the library at 841-4651 for reservations!

On Sunday

December 23rd, from 1 - 3

The Town of Marshall Parks & Recreation
and the Brothertown Association

will sponsor

Christmas at the Depot

on Route 315 in Deansboro.

Santa will be there along with horse and wagon rides and refreshments. Families are welcome to come and enjoy an old fashioned Christmas Celebration.



Make a $50.00 purchase

at Main Street Liquors

and get a


(Both you and your car will love it!)


And - I do keep an eye out for news of WCS Sports, and found this in today's O-D:
Waterville 48, Canastota 47
R.J. Baumgarten had 23 points and 10 rebounds and Jessie Bowie added 10 rebounds in Waterville’s CSC Division II win. Anton Motley led Canastota with 18 points.


Have a great Weekend, Everyone!

Thursday, December 20, 2007


A year ago today, the ground was bare and the trucks carrying the first pieces and parts of the Victorian Street Lamps arrived!

Now, it's 32 degrees with a pretty snowfall putting a fresh cover on the foot-deep accumulation that's already on the ground.

The Christmas Trees are all gone!

There's a dandy supply of cordwood, out on Bogan Road ......

... and it looks as if Santa may live there!

    In the Village, it's Garbage Day!

    E. Main St.

    The Garden Club's Lighting Contest Judges will be here later today!

    They'll have a hard time choosing winners because there are so many elaborate displays.

    Buell Avenue

    Madison Street

    At the same time, a great many residences bear simple, traditional decorations.

    Park Place

    Why not take a ride around town, this evening, and see for yourselves just how pretty the village looks!

    • Thursday: Cloudy with flurries or light freezing drizzle. Little to no accumulation. High around freezing.
    • Thursday Night: Mostly cloudy. Low in the mid 20s.
    • Friday: Decreasing clouds. Becoming partly sunny late. High: 33, Low: 20

    In the morning mail: two letters about the Post Card that was on yesterday's post showing Madison Lake and the Skating Rink!

    Sylvia Person wrote: " I believe it is Madison Lake, between Solsville and Madison a very popular entertainment spot during the twenties,especially Sundays, for picnics and family gatherings.
    I grew up on the Solsville-Augusta Rd, one of the daughters of Herman Karlman. In the middle of winter, when the ice was frozen thick, he'd always go to the Lake, with the team of horses and Bob-sleigh, and bring home a load of ice, cut neatly in huge chunks, and store it in the ice house, packed in sawdust. Each summer evening, after milking, he'd pull out a chunk of ice with huge ice tongs, rinse off the sawdust, and put it in the milk vat to cool the cans of milk to be delivered to the station the following morning. My sister Penny & I would always get chips to suck on--imagine ice in the middle of summer--very rare back in those years.
    The picture on the left in the photo, is most likely the skating rink where we spent hours rolling staking in our teens, with Muriel McBain at the organ. Also, the Woodhall Boys provided music for square dancing on Saturday nights. These buildings slowly disappeared through the years -- but will always be remembered as a very popular spot."

    Brian S. Stone, who used to be a mail carrier here and is now the Postmaster in Smyrna also recognized the scene: " They used to have a skating rink there many years ago. My grandma used to skate there." He also remarked that although he'd seen several post card views of Madison Lake he'd never seen this particular one, before.

    Thanks - all of you - for the in-put!


    Have a Great Day!

    Wednesday, December 19, 2007


    It's Recyclables Day!

    It's 26 degrees. No precipitation.

    • Wednesday: Mostly cloudy with light snow developing in the afternoon. High near freezing.
    • Wednesday Night: Light snow and flurries. Total accumulation of a trace to a couple inches possible. Low in the mid 20s.
    • Thursday: Mostly cloudy with scattered snow showers. High: 30, Low: 21


    WCS Holiday Concert


    Family Movie Night

    Waterville Public Library

    "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer"

    6:00 p.m.

    In the Village, the DPW crews were a work all yesterday plowing and scooping snow from around fire hydrants and lowering snowbanks.

    Out in the country, it's just Wintertime Peaceful.

    The "Polar Bear Club?" This group of mallard ducks made a unified march to the water, circled around once, hastily, and ran back to the "beach!"

    Inside at "Michael's," where it was nice and cozy, The Waterville Times' Annual Christmas Tea was taking place. In the background, former Times owner Martin F. Cleary talks with Post Master Maureen Wratten and current owner Patricia Louise and friend Cathy Murphy while Harding Nursing Home's Katie Landers waits for Correspondent Walter Lee to say "Goodbye" to Dot McConnell.

    Kristi and Kim relaxed ..........

    Marshall Historian Dot McConnell and Stockwell Correspondent Dottie Ruane chatted with Oneida County Legislator E. Carter Stephenson and his wife, Joan.


    In Yesterday's Mail.

    This will stir some memories! A reader sent this scan of a postcard to me, saying,

    "It was made out and addressed but never mailed, no date but the sender (my Grandpa) did say he had to cut ice there tomorrow, and he referred to it as a skating rink."

    And I told him that I thought other blog-readers would have some things to tell about the roller-skating rink that must have been in one of these buildings.


    It's getting a little frantic, isn't it?

    But it's FUN!!

    Tuesday, December 18, 2007


    21.6 degrees, and there's no precipitation right now.

    The world seems to be back on schedule,
    and I've found no announcements of
    cancellations or closings.



    has been re-re-scheduled for

    7:30 P.M. WEDNESDAY


    • Tuesday: Partly cloudy with a few flurries. High: 30
    • Tuesday night: Partly cloudy. 23
    • Wednesday: Chance of snow showers. High: 32, Low: 23
    • Thursday: Mostly cloudy. Chance of a snow shower. High: 30, Low: 18

    Yesterday morning.

    But Sangerfield had our streets plowed ........

    ......... and the sidewalks (all fifteen or so miles of them) were cleared early in the morning.

    Out in the country, the wind had whipped up the first drifts .......

    ......... and snomobilers lost no time taking to the trails.

    In the Park, there were only three Christmas Trees left!

    There's no end to bright decorations!


    Remember: Lighting displays will be judged after dark on Thursday!

    Starting tomorrow,
    Nancy Ayala will be playing the Masonic Temple Bells at about 5:30 every afternoon until Christmas and again on Christmas morning.

    (A good place to hear the bells without interference from passing traffic is in the Firemen's Field parking lot - OR - up in the tower, with Nancy!
    Phone her ahead of time if you want to go.)


    This story of the bells has been printed several times, but - if you're new to Waterville or the blog - here it is, again:

    I met Gerald Coggeshall in 1971, at the time of the Village's Centennial Celebration. He was a little gnome of a man, descendant of illustrious ancestors, who had lived in Waterville all his life. I don't know how many years he had been playing the bells, but it was probably something in the neighborhood of fifty, and he did so without music and with never so much as a frown on his face.

    The way he told the story of the bells was fun, memorable and only slightly inventive! Stephen Gates (an historian who was also a chime afficianado and could play using a regular hymnal) complained bitterly that it was inaccurate and no way to record history, -------however ---- here it is!

    Once upon a time a rich man named Ruben Tower decided to build himself a house across the street and, therefore, away from his parents’ home! And wanting to make sure that everyone knew that this new building was HIS house, he decided to put a tower on the front of it.

    He knew, right away, that there should be a large clock in that tower, one that had a bell that would sound the hours, and so he wrote to the Seth Thomas Clock Company and asked them to make him a suitable clock.

    “Of course, Mr. Tower. We’ll be glad to design an appropriate clock for your home, with visible faces that may be seen by all around the village. May we take the liberty of suggesting that a Mr. Meneely, of Troy, New York, be engaged to cast just the right bell so that it may be heard across the land when it strikes out each hour?”

    Tower thought this was a dandy suggestion, and wrote straight ‘way to Mr. Meneely asking for a perfect bell.

    Mr. Meneely not only knew his metels, he knew his money as well, and said to Mr. Tower,

    “Why, sir - with such a magnificent clockworks one really should have four bells so that a tuneful chime such as that heard at Westminster Cathedral in London may likewise signify each quarter-hour in Waterville.”

    Mr. Tower thought it anther marvelous idea and so, bit by bit, the tower rose; the clock faces appeared* and - finally - four enormous bells were lifted to the topmost canopy of the tower. His dream was complete!

    Only to one such as Mr. Meneely would it occur that there was still a potential profit to be seen:

    “It has occurred to me, Mr. Tower, that you now have four bells and that number is, of course, just one half of a full scale of notes! It would be so easy for us to cast the remaining bells - don’t you see? - and then entire tunes could be played and enjoyed throughout the community.”

    Another chord was struck -- Mr. Tower agreed with the proposal (which actually included 5 more bells) and so we have it that in mid-July, 1889, the day after Mr. Meneely left, Miss Flora Garvey came by train from Utica and played the “chime” for the very first time.

    *The Seth Thomas clockworks were actually installed a few weeks after the chimes were complete.


    Have a Great Day!

    Monday, December 17, 2007

    Monday morning

    14.4 degrees.

    It's not snowing right now, but it certainly snowed during the night. And it blew, too!


    The WCS Winter Concert is no longer listed on the school website.

    WKTV is indicating that
    Rt. 12 between New Hartford and Waterville is still
    and the amount of traffic on Rt. 315 bears that out.

    The O-D has a n up-to-date listing of School Closings.

    • Today: Snow showers becoming more widely scattered and lighter. Continued windy with areas of blowing snow in open areas. Accumulations of a coating to an inch in a few spots. High: 22
    • Tonight: A few snow showers. Perhaps an additional coating to an inch or two, with isolated locally higher amounts, especially south and west of Utica. Low 13.
    • Tuesday: Partly cloudy with a few flurries. High: 27, Low: 18.
    It's still too dark for me to take any pictures or really see the "snow stake."


    This nice photo was in my morning mail:

    "Jim and Debbie Beha of Marcy, along with Boy Scout Troop 79, recently held an Eagle Scout Court of Honor for Marcy's newest Eagle Scout, Ryan Beha, son of Jim and Debbie, and Grandson of Joseph and Leonie Beha of Waterville, They are pictured, along with several Cousins, Aunts and Uncles who attended. "


    Check back later!

    Sunday, December 16, 2007

    Early Sunday

    It's 15.6 degrees.

    We had three or four inches of snow, during the night. It began sleeting at around 4:30 and I can still hear it clicking on the windows.

    A notice on the WKTV website:

    As of 5:00 A.M.

    Route 12 is CLOSED

    South of Summit Rd. in Paris.

    Current conditions

    And then the WIND will start!


    Also Of Interest:



    will take place on Thursday
    (presumably after dark.)

    I need to take a nightime photo of the Verdon residence on Putnam Street. Their lighting is all computer controlled!


    Our loss is Disney's gain!

    If I'd known earlier, I'd have told all of you that there was going to be a Special Gathering at ECCO Video, yesterday afternoon, to say "Goodbye!" to Gene Owen (r.) and "Welcome!" to the store's new owner, Jack Giedraitis (l.) After 23 years at ECCO, Gene is leaving to do something that he's "always wanted to do!" - go to work in "The Magic Kingdom" at Disneyworld!

    (That's "work"?)

    But he promises to keep in touch with us: he's got the blog saved as a favorite on his laptop and will be commenting on our weather - and his - I'm sure!


    When I was last at the Park, around 2:30 yesterday afternoon, there were only about two-dozen Christmas Trees left.


    There were several Watervillians in the SRO audience at the Kirkland Art Center, later yesterday afternoon, for a performance of the medieval nativity play, "The Second Shepherd's Play," presented by Tapestry, the All-centuries Singers, of Clinton and the Grasse River Players of Canton. And what fun it was, complete with delicious warm wassail, servings of "boar's head," an assortment of Figgy Pudding cake and - as always - fine choral music !!!


    Have a good, safe day!