Archive | June, 2021

Tell me about your kids’ best teachers, and I’ll spread the word

4 Jun

Boy, has this been a weird school year.

With only a few weeks left in the 2020/21 year, I got to reminiscing about school years past. It’s been a long time since I’ve had kids in the Webster schools; my youngest graduated from Schroeder in 2012. But I still think about some of the most influential teachers my three children had, and all the ways those elementary, middle school and high school educators helped guide them through some difficult years and shape the adults they are today.

Some of those great teachers are still in Webster classrooms today, while others have long since retired or moved onto other careers. But I’m certain that for every one who’s moved on, another amazing teacher filled the gap.

But if you spend much time on social media, you might think that dedicated, inspirational teachers are a thing of the past. This year, our teachers have been taking a beating in some corners of our community, especially on Facebook. Apparently some people believe, for example, that holding half-day classes or remote classes meant that teachers were basically taking a vacation.

But I suspect that’s a very vocal minority, and most people realize the exact opposite is true. Navigating through the constantly-changing challenges of a COVID school year has been a very difficult task. Our teachers should be hailed as heroes for everything they’ve done this year for our students, delivering an outstanding education while supporting their daily social and emotional needs.

If you also believe that, here’s your chance to show your love.

Tell me about a teacher who has made a difference in your child’s life. Someone who has gone above and beyond to make sure this unusual school year was the best it could be. Perhaps it’s the science teacher who spent an extra hour after school to help your daughter finish a tough lab. Or the fourth grade teacher who has a knack for getting to know each student in his class on a personal level. How about that remote teacher who somehow made virtual learning FUN?

Ask your kids who they think their best teachers are, and why. Or better yet, have your kids write to me themselves. It doesn’t even have to be a teacher they had this year. I’d love to hear from seniors who remember their favorite elementary school teachers.

You can email me your thoughts at I’ll post your comments in my blog the last week of classes. If you have a photo, send that along as well.

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Summer is back in the village

3 Jun

The Village of Webster’s summer schedule is heating up, none too soon, much to the delight of a COVID-weary community which sorely missed out on last summer’s music and dance.

The Friday Night Concerts at the Gazebo, sponsored by Webster’s Business Improvement District (BID), start up again on Friday June 25, featuring Keys to the Caddy from 7 to 9 p.m. The concerts continue on July 9 (performer TBD) and July 23, featuring The Red Hot and Blue Band.

Movies in the Park are also returning to Veterans Memorial Park this summer, scheduled for July 13 and 27 and August 10 and 24. Movies and times are still being determined.

And finally (and this is very exciting) the Webster Jazz Festival will be returning in September, with Music in the Pubs on Friday Sept. 17 from 6 to 11 p.m., and Music in the Street on Saturday Sept. 18 from 4 to 11. I’ll tell you more about that as the time gets closer.

As you can see, details are still being hammered out for many of these events, and I expect others will be added in the next several weeks (I’m hoping for another wine walk, myself). So stay on top of things by visiting the BID website often, where you can also sign up for the BID newsletter.

Another sign of summer, Webster’s two spray parks are now open, dawn to dusk, every day of the week. They’re located at Ridgecrest Park on Ebner Drive, and the First Responder’s Spray Park, 1350 Chiyoda Drive, next door to the Weebster Recreaytion Center.

And ANOTHER sign of summer: The Joe Obbie Farmers’ Market will be opening on June 12! Here’s a blurb from the market’s Facebook page with some more details:

Things are lining up for what we believe to be one of our biggest and best market years ever. We are happy to announce that the market has grown with new vendors being added. We are pleased to see many old faces return as well. And also very pleased to announce the addition of a food truck and a possible lemonade truck. We are still waiting on final word from NY agri markets on the set up this year but are confident things will be more relaxed as we return to normalcy. More information will posted as we close in on June 12th.

Visit their Facebook page regularly for updates.

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You can also get email notifications every time I post a new blog by using the “Follow Me” link on the right side of this page.

Racing ducks and returning bottles: busy weekend in store

2 Jun

Lots of fun stuff happening this weekend I want to tell you about this morning.

The first is a brand-new fundraiser for the Webster Comfort Care Home (WCCH).

It’s the First Annual WCCH Duck Derby, this Saturday June 5 at the Beeches Pavilion at Webster Park. Volunteers will conduct a race of rubber ducks down Mill Creek. Participants can purchase ducks for $5 each, then cheer them on as they ride the “rapids.” Cash prizes will be awarded for first, second and third place ducks. Ducks can be purchased online at

This is a family-friendly event for children and adults of all ages. Child-friendly activities and refreshments will be available while ducks are racing.

The fun begins at 10 a.m. For more details, and to read more about this terrific organization, visit the Webster Comfort Care Home Facebook page.

By the way, put this one on your calendar, too: the WCCH “Lift Your Spirits” Wine and Beer Tasting Event is BACK this year, on Friday October 22 at ArtisanWorks.

Webster Marching Band Bottle and Can Drive

Don’t forget about this weekend’s bottle and can drive on Saturday to benefit the Webster Marching Band. This will be a drop-off drive only. Just pack up your returnables and swing by Willink Middle School on Publisher’s Parkway between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. to drop them off. There will be plenty of worker-bees there to help you, so you won’t even have to get out of the car.

If can’t make it to Willink on Saturday, they’ll come to you. Simply call the Bottle and Can Hotline, 24/7 at 234-8684 (option 1), leave a message and they’ll call you back for details. You can also drop off returns at any time to area bottle return companies (Can Kings, Nickleback, Upstate Bottle Return) and just tell them to credit the Webster Marching Band for the return.

Dancing for a Cause

A big shout-out to Denise Baller and Dancing With Denise for not only shining a spotlight on her dancers during her school’s upcoming recital, but also on a terrific local organization, Bella’s Bumbas.

At the studio’s backyard dance recital this Saturday, Denise and her students’ families will present Bella’s Bumbas with a donation to cover the cost of building several pint-sized Bella’s Bumbas wheelchairs for children with mobility issues.

On the Dancing With Denise Facebook page, Denise writes, “It’s a wonderful, teachable moment to show my students how spreading compassion and love can make little ones who aren’t as mobile ‘feel better when they are dancing’!”

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A smaller, yet still meaningful Memorial Day remembrance ceremony

1 Jun

Almost 150 community members attended yesterday morning’s Memorial Day remembrance ceremony at Webster Rural Cemetery, spreading out all around the cemetery’s gently sloping front yard on a spectacular spring day.

It was a smaller crowd than in years past, in large part because it did not follow a parade. There was also limited participation from children and young Scouts, who would normally place flags next to the small white crosses representing each of our country’s wars — which were also absent this year.

But the fact there was a ceremony at all gave us all a little something to cheer about, especially since COVID won last year and the event was cancelled.

Despite the continuing pandemic-related precautions, the ceremony was nonethless as moving and meaningful as always. The six new flagpoles recently erected by Eagle Scout candidate Brennan Gallatin, proudly flew the flags representing our armed services, and are an outstanding addition to the memorial.

And flapping in the breeze in the middle of the semi-circle of armed services flags, an American flag flown in honor of Rex Daniels, a 1968 R.L. Thomas grad who was KIA in Vietnam on April 16, 1971. That flag came to Webster after being flown over Capitol Hill last month, on April 16, 2021, exactly 50 years to the day Daniels lost his life.

It was a wonderful ceremony, and it was great to see the community continue to come together to remember those who paid the ultimate sacrifice.

Actually, it was just great to see our community come together again. It’s been so long.

Click here to see more photos from the morning.

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email me  at“Like” this blog on Facebook and follow me on Twitter.

You can also get email notifications every time I post a new blog by using the “Follow Me” link on the right side of this page.