Archive | May, 2019

Two opportunities to help save lives

22 May

The two-day Webster Community Blood Drive is coming up in just a few weeks, on June 5 and 6.

You know the one. It’s the one advertised by the big white signs placed all around town, and where you get raffle tickets just for showing up to win some fabulous prizes from our local business owners.

I’ll get into a bit more detail about that in a minute. But first, in case you can’t make that drive, here’s another opportunity coming up tomorrow, May 23:

200398_3430269The North East Joint Fire District and Webster Volunteer Fire Department are hosting an American Red Cross Blood Drive at the Webster Volunteer Fire Department’s Enderlin Station, 35 South Ave. in the Village of Webster on Thursday fro 1 to 7 p.m.

This annual drive encourages friendly competition between Webster Fire Department and West Webster Fire Department to see which can donate the most units. But of course they’re also hoping that all eligible donors in our community will come out and “answer the call,” and give blood in honor of our everyday heroes.

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The Webster Community Blood Drive will return on Wednesday, June 5 at St. Paul’s Church on Hard Rd. and Thursday June 6 at the Webster Recreation Center. Both days will run from noon to 7 p.m.

Already we have commitment for prizes from Barry’s Old School Irish, Knucklehead Craft Brewing, ROC & Soul Fitness, Beyond Cuts, the Chicken Coop, Webster Hots and Ploty’s (although there will be many more). We’re also pleased to have several new businesses join us this year, including The Pickled Paintbrush, Lala, The North Bee and The Best You Spa. And of course, everyone’s favorite prize, a coupon for a free pint of ice cream from Bruster’s will be handed to every donor who walks through the door!

Stay tuned for more details. In the meantime, if you’re a business owner who would like to provide a raffle prize for the community drive, please email me at the address below!

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email me  at missyblog@gmail.com“Like” this blog on Facebook and follow me on Twitter and Instagram

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Memorial Day Parade details

21 May

It looks like the weather is going to start to become actually spring-like for a change, so we may luck out yet again for this year’s Memorial Day Parade on Monday morning.

This is always a very nice parade, and the ceremony that follows it at Webster Rural Cemetery is always moving. I highly recommend bringing your children to see both the parade and the ceremony, so they might begin to understand the huge debt we owe our servicemen and women.

Here are the details of Webster’s Memorial Day parade and ceremony, held Monday May 27, pulled from the Cottreall-Warner American Legion Post website:

  • 9:30 a.m.:  All groups participating in the parade will assemble at Spry Middle School on Sanford Street. All active duty and ex-service men and women are invited to take part in the parade.
  • 10:00 a.m.:  parade moves out from Spry, down South Avenue, turning west on Main Street and proceeding to Webster Rural Cemetery.

If they step off as planned, the parade should arrive at the cemetery around 10:50 a.m.. Following the service, refreshments will be served at the Elks Club on Jackson Road and all are invited to participate.

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Some thoughts about Joe Dady’s passing

20 May

joe-dadyThe Rochester Irish music scene suffered a devastating loss on Saturday with the passing of Joe Dady.

I had the pleasure and honor to call Joe Dady a friend. Our history began more than 20 years ago. Like many, my husband Jack and I knew of the Dady brothers from their frequent appearances around town and their reputation as one of Rochester’s top Irish duos. But we really got to know Joe and his brother John when we worked together creating the original Rochester Irish Festival in the mid-1990s, and worked side-by-side for several years to pull the annual festival together. Joe played a leadership role in that effort, because he was passionate about performing Irish music, and his desire to share it with as many people as possible.

Joe Dady was an inspiration, and I don’t use that word lightly. Back in the days of the Irish Festival, as at any performance the Dady Brothers played, when Joe took the stage and started playing his fiddle, everyone stopped to listen. One of those fans was my young son Sean, then only 5 years old.

I often tell the story about how little Sean would stand at the edge of the stage, looking up at Joe Dady as he performed, fascinated by what he was seeing. It was the beginning of a lifelong passion for Irish music and Irish fiddling.

As Sean grew, he would listen to Dady Brothers’ cassette tapes so often he would wear them out. When it came time to choose an instrument at school, naturally he chose the violin — the fiddle — because he wanted to play like Joe Dady.

Sean is now a music teacher, professional musician, and outstanding fiddler. I firmly believe Joe Dady’s influence helped create the incredible young man he is today.

Until a few years ago, the Dady Brothers would regularly play at Barry’s Old School Irish. We would always make sure to stop by when they did, to reconnect and watch our old friends perform. It was always a nice evening, but one stands out among them all.

It was a little more than five years ago when John and Joe were playing for the first time at the pub. Joe at this point knew very well that Sean had become an accomplished fiddle player. At the beginning of their second set, he called Sean up to the microphone and handed him his own fiddle. For 20 minutes, Sean joined the Dady Brothers for a handful of traditional fiddle tunes and Dady Brothers standards, playing side-by-side with the man who inspired his musical career. (You can see video from that evening here.)

It was a magical evening and one I will never forget. Thank you, Joe Dady, for everything.

Click here to read the D&C story about Joe’s passing.

joe and sean

Joe Dady playing with my son Sean at Barry’s Old School Irish. Click here to see video.

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An update on the bike racks

17 May

A little more than a week ago I posted a blog about how the Village of Webster will be installing four new bike racks this summer. Village Board members will have the final decision on where they’ll be placed, but have invited input from the community to help them guide their decision.

So I created a survey suggesting nine different locations throughout the village. Thank you to everyone who has taken a minute to fill it out (and it really only takes a minute). I’ve gotten 36 responses so far, but would love to have a lot more before I present my findings to the Board in a few weeks.

Here’s an update on what people have been telling me so far:

bike rack 1* The top two most popular locations so far for the bike racks with the Town of Webster logo are 1) in front of Barry’s Old School Irish/The Garage Sale Store and 2) in Veterans Park. Running a close third is a spot in front of Village Hall.

bike rack 2

* The top two most popular locations for the racks with the bike insignia are 1) in the parking lot somewhere near Village Bakery and 2) in front of Barry’s/The Garage Sale Store. There is not a close third in this race yet.

If you’d like to weigh in with your opinion, there’s still plenty of time. To read more about how the bike racks came to be, click here to go to my original blog. Or click here to go directly to the survey.

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Firefighters remember those lost to suicide

16 May

rememberThis is going to be cool.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month and our Webster firefighters and emergency responders are joining a nationwide effort to mark it in a big way.

This Friday night May 17 at 9 p.m. they’ll be pulling all of their rigs out onto the tarmac and running their lights for a full minute. The display is meant to show support for all families who have lost loved ones to suicide.

Firefighters at Station 1 in the Village of Webster and Station 3 on Phillips Road will be participating. So if you’re driving by and see the spectacle, don’t worry. Better yet, take a few minutes to pull over, pause for a minute and show your support.

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Host families needed for Spanish exchange students

16 May

Some welcoming local families are needed to host several Spanish exchange students this summer.

Fifteen students, ages 13 to 18, will be visiting from Spain for four weeks this coming July as part of the Global Friendships academic program. Many host families are still needed.

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There’s really not much commitment involved. The students, who all speak fluent English, will be attending classes in the Webster area for 2 hours every week, and will be going on field trips and after-school activities, so families won’t have to entertain their guests 24/7. Most of the family time is typically spent on their long weekends off from school.

If your family has a vacation or camping trip scheduled, your student can tag along, and they’ll have plenty of cash to cover all their expenses.

Host families are asked to provide meals and a bed. The student can even share a room with a child of the same gender.

This is a volunteer program, so no stipend is provided. But it’s a short program and a great opportunity to expose your family to a new language and culture, while helping make the world a more welcoming place. Click on the flyer for more details, and visit globalfriendships.com for more information about the program.

If you can help out or have any questions, contact Dave Kramer, Exchange Program Coordinator, at davekramer85@gmail.com.

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The Chorus of the Genesee wants to make some “Connections”

15 May

Lyric-webpage-Chorus-genesee-2019-500X500The Chorus of the Genesee, Webster’s very own barbershop harmony chorus, has announced that its annual spring show, called “Connections,” has been scheduled for May 18.

Under the direction of Steve Link, the show will feature two acts. In act one, the chorus shares a variety of ways we can be connected through song. Audience members will have an opportunity to participate, and will undoubtedly recognize several of the songs, which will include “Can’t Stop the Feeling!,” “How Can I Miss You If You Won’t Go Away?,” and “Why Are All the Songs? (The Rochester Song).”

The Rush-Henrietta High School Barbershop Chorus will be featured in this act, as well as chapter quartets A-Chording to Us and Homecoming.

The second act will first feature the Rochester area quartet FUSION, six-time Harmony Incorporated International medalists. Headlining the second act is Ontario’s Premier Barbershop Quartet, ‘Shoptimus Prime, 2015 International Collegiate Silver Medalists. Members Michael La Scala, Michael Black, Joel La Scala, and Tom Mifflin are from New York and Ontario, Canada.

Director Steve Link said,

The best part about the theme for this year’s show is right in the title.  “Connections” is a program that celebrates the connections that the Chorus of the Genesee has among its members, the community, and other ensembles locally and across borders. The show also comes at a time when community ensemble singing is less common than ever before, and even the sense of community between individuals is less common as well.

In previous years, the Chorus’ spring shows have been held at Penfield High School. But this year it’s being held at the Lyric Theatre on East Ave. for the first time. The hope is that the more centrally-located venue will attract more music lovers from the Greater Rochester community.

Connections will take the stage at 7 p.m. on Saturday, May 18 at the Lyric Theatre, 440 East Ave., Rochester. Tickets are $16 in advance, $18 at the door, and $14 for students and groups of 10 or more. They can be purchased online through the Lyric Theatre’s website or at Rochester area Wegman’s Supermarkets.

For more information, call (585) 256-0444, or click here.

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Free books for students

14 May

library-mainWouldn’t it be great if every single student in our district could be handed a free book?

The Webster Teachers Association (WTA) wanted that, too. So they signed on to the First Book program and recently received a truckload (literally) of books — 25,000 of them — which they hope to distribute to schools by the end of the year.

But unloading, unpacking, sorting and repacking them for the schools is a monumental undertaking. Knowing that many hands make light work, the WTA is partnering with the Webster Central PTSA to recruit volunteers to help out.

The goal is to get at least two adults from each school in the district to sign up to help for a few hours on Saturday May 18 from 8 a.m. to noon in the Webster Thomas High School Field House.  It should be fun work and the time will pass quickly. The WTA will even provide light refreshments.

Signing up is easy. Click here to see what slots still need to be filled. And thank you in advance for taking the time to support our students.

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Spreading kindness, one locker at a time

14 May

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This is another great story from the schools.

Last Friday morning, every single student in all four Webster secondary schools arrived to find inspirational notes taped to their lockers. The previous evening, teams of parent volunteers had fanned out at each school — Schroeder and Thomas high schools and Willink and Spry middle schools — and taped thousands of positive, uplifting messages to students’ lockers.

The project was coordinated and implemented by the Webster Central PTSA, in conjunction with the Webster Teachers Association.

PTSA representative Stacie Peters wrote,

My co-president, Allison Fedyk Featherly and I along with WTA President Chris Wojtas and WTA/PTSA liaison Linda Law thought as the year is winding down it can be a stressful for our older students with exams, papers, homework, etc. We wanted to send some encouraging vibes to them during this time.

We are excited to surprise the students as they come in Friday morning. We did this last year as well and the smiles it brings to students/staff was awesome!

What a wonderful, simple way to bring a little sunshine into our schools during a dreary spring.

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Schroeder athlete needs our votes!

13 May

sydney 1Sydney Bolton, one of our finest high school athletes — a star on the field and in the classroom — has been nominated by the Democrat and Chronicle as their Female Athlete of the Week for May 6-11. But the only way she’ll win is with OUR help.

The D&C is now taking votes to decide who will be the the male and female athletes of the week each week. Sydney, a Webster Schroeder Varsity softball pitcher, is one of four Rochester-area athletes in the running for this week’s honors.

Sydney, a junior at Schroeder, pitched two complete games last week for the Warriors, allowing just three runs in two wins, and driving in five runs of her own. But her academic achievements are equally impressive.

Sydney…carries a 94.5 cumulative GPA while taking enriched AP courses and interesting electives. She is a member of Schroeder’s National Honor Society (and) volunteers with Link Crew. Her academics have allowed her to be on High Honor Roll every quarter, and she was recently accepted into the New Visions program at St. Ann’s. In addition to softball, Sydney plays the trumpet in the wind ensemble and symphony orchestra.

Future plans include becoming a pediatric nurse practitioner in oncology/ hematology, and coaching a youth softball team.

Sydney was also recently named the Webster Schroeder Female Athlete of the month at school (the above quote was taken from that display) and was recently inducted into Tri-M music honor society.

Sydney is an exceptional scholar-athlete who deserves to be recognized. It would be great if all of Webster could get behind her and show the entire Rochester area how proud we are of our young people.

Click here to vote for Sydney. (You don’t have to be a D&C subscriber.) You can vote once per hour, and votes will be accepted until noon on May 17.

Sydney 2

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email me at missyblog@gmail.com“Like” this blog on Facebook and follow me on Twitter and Instagram

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