Explore a “hidden gem” with the Friends of Webster Trails

15 Aug

Even if if you’ve hiked some of Webster’s fine trail system, you may not know about this one.

It’s the Midnight Trail, which can be found just south of Webster Park. On Sunday August 26, The Friends of Webster Trails would love to introduce it to you at their second of three Hidden Gems hikes, a series designed to introduce nature lovers to some of Webster’s lesser-known trails.

The two-mile hike will begin at 1 p.m. at Whiting Road Nature Preserve, cross Whiting Road and head into Webster Park via the Midnight Trail loop. The trail will have some rolling terrain but is not too steep.

This hike will be held rain or shine, but any changes to the event will be communicated via email, so please sign up by clicking here. Anyone is welcome to attend, but please leave your pets at home this time around.

The map below, pulled from the Friends of Webster Trails website, shows the trail you’ll be hiking. Make sure to check all the trail maps and other great information on that website. Then go over to the membership page and throw these folks some cash to thank them for creating and maintaining Webster’s awesome trails.

midnight trail

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News from the schools

14 Aug

Rod DeRose temp photo - uncroppedMore good news from the schools this morning.

First, the school district has announced that Rob DeRose will be the new assistant principal at DeWitt Road Elementary School.

DeRose currently serves as Webster CSD’s extended school year coordinator and instructional specialist for humanities/literacy. He will begin his new position effective September 1.

DeRose began his career in WCSD as a special education teacher at State Road Elementary School, and also served as special education department lead teacher for four years. He lives in Macedon with his wife, Carmella, and three children, Jacob (8), Benjamin (6), and Gracie (3).

The Webster Central PTSA has announced the winners of the organization’s 2018 Student Awards.

Each year the Webster Central PTSA recognizes six outstanding seniors, chosen by high school counselors in a blind selection process from the Common Applications. For each award, one student is chosen from each high school, Webster Schroeder and Webster Thomas. Each winner will receive $500.

Webster Central PTSA Pursue Your Passion Award

The Pursue Your Passion Award recognizes seniors working to make their dream a reality, who exemplify the principles of Webster Central PTSA and student CARE behaviors. This year’s winners are Brianna Jones (Schroeder) and Dominic Chiara (Thomas).

Webster Central PTSA Academic Excellence Award

This award recognizes seniors who have demonstrated excellence in academic achievement and are pursuing a college education. This year’s winners are Selena Zhang (Schroeder) and Sarah Fischer (Thomas).

Webster Central PTSA Ann Carmody Award for Outstanding Community Service

As its name suggests, this award is given to a senior who has demonstrated excellence and commitment to community service efforts in and/or outside of school, measured by volunteer hours. This year’s winners are Caitlin Glastonbury (Schroeder) and Katelyn Meredith (Thomas).

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Webster is in mourning

11 Aug

barnesEarlier this week, Webster suffered a great loss when Chris Barnes, a beloved teacher, coach, father and friend, passed after a hard-fought battle with cancer.

Barnes was long-time coach of the Webster Thomas girls’ lacrosse team, and a teacher at Willink Middle School. He is remembered for both his successes on the playing field and in the classroom, but his main legacy lies in the kind of person he was and how he positively affected the lives of the young women who played for him.

You can read more about all that in a story by Stevie Johnson in the Democrat and Chronicle . I’d like to focus, therefore, on a lacrosse game held last Tuesday in Barnes’ honor.

It was the team’s annual alumna game, which this year was dedicated to Coach Barnes.  All proceeds from t-shirt’s, raffles and food went to the Barnes family.

WROC-TV and WHAM-TV both covered the game. Here’s the transcript from the WHAM story, courtesy Mary Alice and David Moore:

Tuesday night, the Webster Titans showed just how big their collective heart is. They came together to rally around a beloved teacher and coach.

Girls Lacrosse at Webster Thomas is synonymous with Coach Chris Barnes. He started the program in 2003, teaching the young women on the field for Tuesday’s alumni game everything they know about lacrosse.

“He taught me, personally, a lot about passion,” said Webster Thomas graduate Nicole Voci. “Seeing him show up to every practice and every game kind of meant a lot to me, and it made me want to win for him.”

And the players will tell you the lessons from Coach Barnes went beyond lacrosse.

“He’s meant a lot to me,” said graduate Kelsey Quinlan.

Now, the coach’s players are showing him just how much he meant to them, Tuesday’s game was a fundraiser to honor Coach Barnes during what’s become a two-year battle with colon cancer. It never stopped him – he worked right up until his surgery.

“He taught the kids as much about life as he did about lacrosse,” said retired athletic director Scott Morrison.

“His legacy is what he’s passed onto hundreds and hundreds of girls and their families,” said former Barnes assistant and present Webster Schroeder Girls Lacrosse Coach Bryan Hanley, “his spirit and how he handled himself.”

Ever the coach, even when he isn’t on the sidelines, Chris Barnes is still there – in the hearts and minds of his team.

All proceeds from Tuesday’s event will be donated to a charity of Coach Barnes’ choice.

Calling hours for Chris Barnes will be held Wednesday August 15 from 1 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. at Willard Scott Funeral Home, 12 South Avenue, and the funeral held the following morning at Immanuel Lutheran Church. For details, click here to read the obituary.

lacrosse alumna

Webster Thomas girls’ lacrosse alumna

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Got school supplies? Don’t need ’em?

10 Aug

Summer 2018

If you’ve got kids (like me) who have long finished high school, but still (like me) have boxes full of new spiral notebooks, packages of lined paper, and unopened packages of pens and pencils tucked away, here’s a great way to clear out the clutter and help local families.

The Webster Public Library is hosting a school supply drive to benefit Hope Ministry, an agency which responds to special or emergency needs of Webster-area residents.

suppliesHope Ministry holds a “Back to School Night” every year to distribute new school supplies to low-income families with children who live in Webster. The collection deadline at the library is August 15.

Check out the list to the left to see what supplies are being requested.

Stop by any time the library is open and drop off your donations in the collection box across from the Check Out Desk.

The Webster Public Library is located at 980 Ridge Road. Entrance is off of Van Ingen Drive behind the plaza.

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Art show comes to Press on Main

9 Aug

IMG_20180706_123735457

Have you checked out the new Press on Main screen print/art shop yet? It recently opened at 21 East Main, at the corner of Lapham Park, in the old Singh Mart.

It’s kind of hard to describe the shop … it’s colorful … there are some t-shirt racks … when I was there, the front window had a display of paint-splattered cowboy hats. (See what I mean? Tough to describe.) Basically, Press on Main is a shop like you’ve probably never seen before.

Which means you’ll want to stop in and see it for yourself. A great opportunity to do that is coming up from 4 to 8 p.m. on Friday August 17, when owner Noah Calieri will be hosting an art show featuring several artists, and entertainment by the local rock band The Fix. Noah also said there will be an open mic if anyone else would like to perform

There’s going to be cake, clothing and artwork for sale and art raffles.

If you’d like to read more about Press on Main, this unique new shop, click here to read the blog I wrote.

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Happy anniversary, Kittelberger!

8 Aug

kittelberger cropped

Kittelberger Florist & Gifts, one of Webster’s best-known and respected businesses, is turning 90 years old this week (sort of), and they want to celebrate with the whole town.

I say that Kittelberger’s is “sort of” turning 90 for one main reason. Owner Bill Horeth explained in an email that they’ve actually been around a lot longer than that. He wrote,

Our family uses 1928 as our official starting date but actually it was much earlier. Jenny and Will Kittelberger lived on the property where the current store still is. Jenny had a small greenhouse from which she sold annuals and plants. The earliest records we can find of sales for Jenny were in 1915 in which she sold plants to a church. Jenny and Will brought Willy Fuchs over from Germany to work with them and help garden. After meeting Pauline (at night school to learn English) they married and carried on Jenny’s love of flowers. This 1928 date represents our families start of Kittelbergers.

Over the next 90 years the business has seen  many changes. When Xerox started to become a significant presence on that side of town, the original Kittelberger house demolished to make way for Orchard Street to connect the village. A ranch house was built next to the shop, which is now part of the gift area.  Several more renovations happened in the 70s, 80s and after, creating the Kittleberger shop we all now know and love.

Kittelberger’s loves Webster as much as Webster loves them.  Bill continued,

We have loved the privilege of doing business in Webster. Like flowers and plants, our roots have been planted here and remained on the same soil. The families of Webster and surrounding areas have not only been our customers, but have become our friends. We have celebrated with them, brought comfort at times of sorrow, welcomed new members to the family, and helped them show signs of affection and love. Many smiles have been brought to faces and have brightened doomy days. We are proud to be a part of the Webster Community and look forward to keeping Webster, Where Life Is Worth Living!

The entire Webster community is invited to join in the celebration of Kittelberger Florist’s 90 (plus) years in Webster. The anniversary bash kicks off this Thursday night August 9, when Kittelberger hosts a gazebo concert featuring Rochester Brass and Electric, beginning at 7 p.m.

On Saturday August 10, following the village’s final Wine Walk of the season, make your way down to Kittelberger’s, 263 North Ave., at 7:30 p.m. for a formal celebration with food trucks and fireworks.

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Good food, good music courtesy the Webster Marching Band

7 Aug

webster marching band

A quick heads up today on a few upcoming events hosted by our very own Webster Marching Band.

On Thursday August 9, the band will host a Sticky Lips pulled pork BBQ fundraiser at Webster Schroeder High School, from 5 to 7 p.m.

For $11.50 your dinner includes a pulled pork sandwich, mac salad, beans and pickles.

On Saturday August 18, the band will hold a craft day at Webster Schroeder, a chance for area craefters to spend a day with like-minded people, working on their projects. Click here for more information about that.

The band’s 33rd annual Autumn Fanfare field show and competition is scheduled for Saturday October 6 at Webster Schroeder High School. This year’s show is called “Heart Strings Tugged & Torn.”

These are always outstandingly impressive shows. Gates open at 5:30, show starts at 7. Watch for pre-sale ticket information.

And if you missed the recent bottle and can drive which the band held last Saturday, no sweat. There are two other ways to get your empties to the band and clear out your garage.

First, you can call their hotline number anytime to let them know you have a bunch of empties to pick up. Just call 234-8684, leave a message, and someone will get back in touch with you to schedule a pick-up. OR, you can drop your returnables off at Can Kings, 1183 Ridge Road, and tell them you want to donate them to the Marching Band.

For more information about the band and these events, visit the Friends of the Marching Band Facebook page.

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The Tappan Zee is coming to Webster …?

6 Aug
Tappan Zee 2

The Tappan Zee Bridge construction site

Did you ever drive over the Tappan Zee Bridge? You just might have that chance before too long, because the bridge might be coming to Webster.

Sort of.

You may have heard that the Tappan Zee Bridge, which spans the Hudson River just north of New York City, was recently replaced. You can imagine the number of surplus girders and deck panels that resulted.  It would be a shame to have wasted them. Thanks to some outstanding foresight by the Thruway Authority and other Powers That Be, many of those salvaged deck panels may soon be part of a new bridge in Webster.

I got in touch with County Bridge Engineer Bo Mansouri, from the Monroe County Department of Transportation, who explained how this all came about. He wrote,

We recently accepted delivery of 31 bridge panels that we had requested from the NYSTA (Thruway Authority). We have them in our storage now. This process started back in October 2014, before the new bridge construction began. Back then, all municipalities in the State were asked for their interest in obtaining the salvaged deck panels for use in their future capital improvement projects!! They are only 7-13 years old, and in excellent condition.

It cost the County only $1 to buy, and have the 31 panels delivered and dropped off at our storage site, thanks to FHWA and NYSTA, the project sponsors. It was their goal to have as many of these panels salvaged, and put to good use, as possible. It is estimated that for every three panels that will be used in future Monroe County Capital Bridge Projects, roughly $150-250,000 will be saved.

135 panels are being distributed to 13 agencies across the State, with Monroe County accepting 31 of them, the most number by far! Monroe County aggressively pursued the opportunity to grab as many of these panels as we could store, to use in future maintenance and capital improvement bridge projects, The 12′ wide by 50′ long prefabricated concrete-deck-on-galvanized-beams panels are perfect for most medium span bridges in the County. Other local agencies have since heard about and now asking us for them. Monroe County will consider sharing them with other local government, a stipulation made in an agreement with the NYSTA. These panels will be for use in public works projects only and are not to be sold or given to private enterprises.

Tappan Zee 1

Typical panel being delivered to the county

Plans are currently in the works to replace the 1952-era Salt Road Bridge over Four Mile Creek, just south of Lake Road. The bridge has been identified as a possible site for using these former Tappan Zee Bridge deck panels. The project is still in the design and approval process, but if everything goes as planned, construction should begin in the summer of 2020.

What a great way to recycle perfectly good construction materials and save taxpayers a ton of money to boot. And how cool it will be driving over that bridge, knowing you might have driven over those same panels when they were part of the old Tappan Zee.

Many thanks to Bo Mansouri for this information and the great photos.

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News from the schools

4 Aug

back-to-school-school-clipart

It’s August. We can officially start talking about school again.

First, if you’re new to the district, or if you have an incoming kindergarten student, make sure to remember to register your children. School starts on September 4, so It’s important to do that right away.

Children who will be 5 years old on or before December 1 are eligible to enter school. Students are assigned to schools based on their primary residence. If predetermined class sizes have been reached, a new entrant or an existing student whose family has moved to a new address within the district may be assigned to an alternate Webster school for the school year. (That’s another reason to register early!)

Registrations are taken by appointment at Webster Central School District’s Central Registration Office, located on the third floor of Spry Middle School, 119 South Avenue. Call (585) 216-0029 to schedule an appointment. A completed registration packet, along with all required documents, must be provided during the meeting. Packets are available at all WCSD school buildings and here on the district website.

Remember, children will not be able to start school in the fall without being registered.

And if your new student is a kindergartner, don’t forget to attend the Strive for Five for School Bus Safety Program next week to help your young’un get used to riding a school bus. For more information, check out my blog here.

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Changes are happening at Webster Thomas High School

Clark-Susan web photo

Dr. Susan Clark

Dr. Susan Clark, a former Thomas math teacher and most recently one of the school’s assistant principals, is moving on. She’s been appointed the new Webster Central School District Director of Mathematics and Business. She’s taking over the position vacated by Eric Blask.

Replacing Dr. Clark at Thomas as new assistant principal is Kylene

Anson-Kylene-9411

Kylene Anson

Anson. Anson is currently assistant principal for Willink Middle School’s Blue House. Before coming to Webster, she was a special education teacher in East Irondequoit, and then assistant principal at Victor Senior High School.

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Finally, I snapped this photo yesterday at Plank Road North Elementary School, where it looks like the new playground is almost complete. All of our elementary schools are getting playground upgrades this summer, which will make the start of the school year even more exciting for the kids.

IMG_20180803_093525283

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Stay busy this summer at the library

3 Aug

 

art supplies

There’s still one whole month to fill before school starts up again. The Webster Public Library feels your pain, and has scheduled a raft of great events to keep the kids from going crazy.

Your kids can Get Crafty! with these three great craft projects:

  • On Monday August 6 from 1 to 2 p.m., kids in grades 4-12 can make glitter tube bracelets, filled with colored beads an glitter. It’s be a cook new piece of jewelry for that first day back to school. Click here to register.
  • On Saturday August 18 from 11 a.m. to noon, create your own gemstone bracelet. This program is designed for grades 4-8. Register here.
  • On Monday August 20 from 1 to 2:30 p.m., kids grade 6 and up can learn to make their own sweet-smelling, fizzy bath bombs using simple ingredients. They’ll even take one home with them. Register here.

Kids entering grades 1 to 4 are invited to get buggy on Wednesday August 22.

Participants will begin by making a bug jar in the library, then everyone will walk over to the nearby Hickory Bark Woods Trail to collect and identify species. Registration is required and parents are welcome to participate. The program runs from 2:30 to 4 pm.

Every heard of bullet journaling? My son and daughter both use these, and they help immensely to keep a busy life organized.

On Thursday August 9, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., you can learn how to do it yourself. Bullet Journaling was introduced to help people organize their thoughts and ideas. A bullet journal comes with blank pages for you to turn into an agenda, sketchbook, scrapbook, memory log, etc.

At the program, two library staff members will share their bullet journal techniques, review tips and tricks they’ve learned along the way and create some demo pages. You can even enter to win a bullet journal gift basket.  Register here to attend.

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