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Community Arts Day postponed

17 Mar


With an inevitable and understandable move announced this morning, Community Arts Day, scheduled for April 18, has been postponed.

In the email, CAD chair Jenny Hryhorenko wrote,

After discussion with the Central PTSA executive team and in review of the escalating group restrictions, we have made the decision to postpone Community Arts Day. We say postpone because we truly believe we can make this happen on a future weekend – but obviously it is too early for us to be planning for when that might be. There are a lot of moving parts to CAD but you can be sure our team is committed to working with the district, exhibitors, vendors, and performing groups to try and make CAD happen at a later date.

Registrants and sponsors : Refunds for your payments are available, or you can also choose to “hold your spot” and we can refund if the new date doesn’t work for you, or if rescheduling turns out not to be feasible.

We thank you for your patience and hope you are all hanging in there! Please direct any questions to

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Peep Show postponed and other news

16 Mar

Yellow Marshmallow Chicks in RowsNo surprise here.

I received word late yesterday that the annual Greater Rochester Peep Show has been postponed to May 9 and 10.

This event draws so many more than 50 people, and as we all know, large gatherings are pretty much verboten in our current climate. So it was just a matter of time before the decision to postpone was made.

I’m glad they haven’t just canceled it, because this is one of my favorite events of the year (I know, I say that a lot, but Webster just has SO MANY COOL EVENTS). It would be great if life’s back to almost normal by early May, but I’d lay odds it might have to be moved again.

So stay tuned and also I’ll let you know if I hear anything about Community Arts Day, scheduled for April 18. So far, that is still on. But……

Webster Library closed

The Webster Public Library is officially closed, but they will be offering their drive-up service, virtual storytimes and more. I just got this email from them:

As the Coronavirus situation expands, we here at the Webster Public Library have been discussing how we could do the most good for our community at this uncertain time. How we could make a difference now, when it’s needed. We have decided the best way to make a positive impact in our society is to do our part in preventing the increased spread of the COVID-19 virus. We have decided to close our doors, for now. We would not do this if we did not think it was a truly necessary precaution. We will be closed temporarily starting Sunday, March 15.

Because we are closed does not mean we are gone. We are hard at work thinking of what services we need to provide now and creating them for our community in this time of need.

We are continuing to offer our Drive-Up, Pick-Up service between the hours of 11am and 4pm, Monday through Saturday. Give us a call and tell us what items you want, pull up out front in your car, and we will bring the items out to you. Books, movies, TV shows, magazines, audiobooks, storytime at home kits, video games, comics, and more are available to check out via this manner. Call us! (585) 872-7075. Or email at

We are eliminating all overdue fees during the time we remain closed. If you can’t make it here to return your materials, don’t worry about it—we understand that there are other concerns on your minds right now.

We are offering weekly virtual storytimes via our Facebook page—stay tuned for announcements. We will be uploading videos of our librarians doing rhymes, songs, books, and more.

We are answering reference questions via phone between the hours of 11am and 4pm, Monday through Saturday. Call us at (585) 872-7075 option 3, especially if you’d like help setting up your OverDrive or Libby account to access our online catalog of items. This includes ebooks, audiobook, movies, and magazines. Anyone with a Monroe County Library System card can access these!

We are planning social media posts with activities for you and building new Pinterest boards with crafts that can be done with limited supplies at home. We are rapidly rescheduling our programs, planning elaborate new ones, cleaning house here, and looking ahead.

As our community moves online, we remain a community. Your library is still here for you! We will adapt to the situation to provide for new necessities, and we will do it together. And as everything returns to usual, we will be here then too. We’ll get from here to there together.

We can’t wait to see you again soon. And until then, we’ll see you online and over the phone.

More closings and delays

I pulled this updated list of closings and delays from the channel 8 website this morning:

Need your St. Patrick’s Day music fix?

Among other things, 2020 will probably come to be known as the year without a St. Patrick’s Day. If any area bars and pubs have not yet closed, they will be soon, and certainly I’m not going near one tomorrow.

So if you (like me) need a St. Patrick’s Day music fix, may I recommend this live stream by my friends Brian and Rose of House of Hamill. (They’re calling it a “Quaran-stream.”)

These two internationally-known Irish musicians are outstanding fiddle players and vocalists — and more. And since, like Irish musicians around the world, most of their gigs have been canceled, they’ve decided to share some love and provide a free online, live-stream, hour-long concert for anyone who wants to tune in.

The performance will take place from 7 to 8 p.m. tomorrow night (St. Patrick’s Day). Just click on the link above (or here). It is truly free, but they will have a virtual PayPal “tip jar” for anyone included to throw them a few bucks.  

Read more details about the event and House of Hamill here.

house of hamill

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Strike up the bands!

11 Mar

Members of last year’s Willink Student-Parent Band warm up before a rehearsal.

Whether you like to play — or just listen to — great band music, here are two events you’ll want to know about.

The Willink Student-Parent Band will hold its annual spring concert this coming Saturday, March 14 in the Willink Middle School cafetorium, 900 Publishers Parkway.

The band is celebrating its 26th year in 2020, continuing a tradition which began in 1994, bringing students, family and community together to create music and have fun.

The concert begins at 7 p.m. Tickets are $2 and can be purchased either from band members or at the door.

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Our very own Webster Village Band is kicking off its season, having just released its 2020 rehearsal schedule.

Rehearsals take place on Thursday evenings from 7 to 9 pm, usually in the Willink Middle School band room. They’ll begin this Thursday March 12 and run through June 4, with a concerts scheduled pre-season concerts scheduled for April 23 at Calkins Rd. Middle School in Pittsford and May 7 at Cherry Ridge Senior Center.

The all-volunteer Webster Village Band is comprised of more than 50 members,  under the direction of Tom Indiano and Associate Director Sue Siegmund. They’re always looking for more musicians to join the group. Additional information is available from Harvey Cohen, at Plus, you can see more rehearsal information on their website here.

village band

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Plank Rd. schools’ staff members will play basketball for charity

5 Mar

Plank Rd. North and Plank. Rd. South elementary schools have been neighbors and close friends pretty much forever. But they have never played together.

That will change later this month when the schools host the first annual Battle of the Planks Staff Charity Basketball Game on Saturday March 28, when faculty and staff members from both schools hit the Webster Schroeder High School court for a friendly game of hoops to benefit Golisano Children’s Hospital.

The idea for the game came from a conversation a few weeks ago between Plank North principal Craig Bodensteiner and physical education teacher Kevin Sayers as they monitored the bus loop.

“I’d always wanted to do something like this,” Bodensteiner said, and this spring, between the two school breaks, seemed the right time to do it.

“We’re in the middle of March Madness, so everyone is thinking about basketball. And the month of March kind of drags, so we thought this would be a good way to spice things up.” The next step was running the idea by Plank South principal Jennifer Sullivan.

“She’s a former basketball player,” Bodensteiner said, “so she’s very excited.”

We’re talking real basketball here, folks, complete with a referee, announcers, and concessions. About the only thing that might be missing in spots is actual athletic ability. But, Bodensteiner makes sure to stress, skill is not required; what is required is the desire to have fun.

“It’s a great way to bring everyone together,” he said. “Staff members at both schools will enjoy getting together in a non-work environment, and students will love the opportunity to come out to cheer on their favorite teachers, and show some school pride.”

Alumni are also being invited, adding more volume to each school’s cheering section.

It’s going to be a lot of fun and a lot of friendly competition,” Bodensteiner said. But, he added,”If Plank North can get the win, that’s a cherry on the top.”

The First Annual Battle of the Planks Staff Charity Basketball Game is scheduled for Saturday March 28 at 5:30 p.m. at Webster Schroeder High School, 875 Ridge Rd. There is no admission, but donations are encouraged, and all proceeds will benefit Golisano Children’s Hospital, a cause suggested by Plank North assistant principal Heather Balsamo.

(Big thanks to Kevin Sayers and Shawn Strege, Webster’s Director of Physical Education and Athletics, for so efficiently pulling together the details and arranging for the venue.)

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Spry Middle School to present Fiddler on the Roof this weekend

3 Mar

posterA theatrical classic will be presented this weekend by Spry Middle School when the drama club performs Fiddler on the Roof Jr. at Willink Middle School on Friday and Saturday.

You read that right. It’s this year’s Spry Middle School spring musical, but it’s being staged at Willink thanks to some rather intense renovations and construction going on right now at Spry. Among other things, the school’s cafetorium is being gutted and rebuilt, which means the musical was completely uprooted.

That by itself should be reason enough for people to want to come out and support these kids. For several months they’ve been trying to pull together the production while faced with some fairly significant hurdles. For a long time, for example, they didn’t even have a stage to rehearse on. Once the Willink stage opened up, they still had to share it with other groups, and had to be bused over there every day, a trip which took up valuable rehearsal time.

None of those difficulties will be evident,  however, when the curtain rises opening night. Audience members will just see an amazing performance presented by some amazing young actors and actresses.

Shows will take place at Willink Middle School, 900 Publisher’s Parkway, this Friday March 6 at 7:30 p.m., and Saturday March 7 at 2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $7 available online at this link. There might be some available at the door, but Spry shows usually sell out, so you might not want to take that chance.

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Harmony House event celebrates women’s right to vote

20 Feb

Victoria Woodhull

Now here’s something I’ll bet you didn’t know: the first woman to run for President of the United States actually did it in way back in 1872.

Her name was Victoria Woodhull, and not only does she hold that honor, she can also claim a familial connection with Webster. She was the daughter-in-law of Byron Woodhull, the Town of Webster’s first supervisor.

Those are just a few of the fascinating facts you’ll learn when the Webster Museum hosts Women Beyond Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton at the Harmony House on Sunday Feb. 23 at 2 p.m., presented by Jack Kowiak.

The program is being held in honor of the 200th anniversary of women winning the right to vote. Most of know of Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and how they championed the cause of women’s rights in the late 1800s. But many other women of that era — like Victoria Woodhull — made their mark as well, and you’ll learn about them at this presentation.

The program is free and no registration is required. For more information about this and other Webster Museum programs, click here to visit their website.

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Webster Library fun and trains

19 Feb

strike backThree cool events coming up in the next few days at the Webster Public Library that I want to let you know about.

The first is Thursday night from 6 to 7:30 p.m., when Strike Back Martial Arts, a jujitsu dojo located in the Village of Webster, will be on hand for the weekly Family Night to present a workshop. Participants will learn proper striking and kicking technique, some simple self-defense drills especially suited for children, and throwing skills.

This will be a very hands-on workshop, and parents will be able to participate as well in several of the lessons.

I am especially excited about the evening because I’ll be there, helping to present the workshop. So if you’d like to (literally) throw me around, be there at Family Night Thursday night in the library’s storytime room.

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I’ll be back at the library on Friday from noon to 3:30 p.m. for my very first “Office Hours” event. I’ll be parked in a comfortable chair in the main lobby, computer in hand, working on blogs if you’d like to come by and say hi.

As I said a few days ago when I first told you about this event, I know that a lot of people read my blog, but I’ve met relatively few of you. This is a great opportunity to change that. It’s a chance for you to ask me any burning questions you might have, let me know about upcoming events, or just talk about Webster things.

You won’t be able to miss me; I’m going to have a poster and everything.


And while you’re at the library visiting me on Friday, stop by the N-Scale Model Railroading Exhibit, which will be taking place in the community room from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. It continues on Saturday as well, from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

This year marks the 150th anniversary of the completion of first U.S. Transcontinental Railroad. To commemorate that, the library will have two full days of N-scale model railroading featuring T-track modules designed by the Genesee & Ontario Model N-Gineers. The entire community room will be filled with railroad tracks. Adults and kids both will want to see it.

The Webster Public Library is located at 980 Ridge Rd., at the back of Webster Plaza. For more information about these and other library programs, click here.

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Webster community mailbag

18 Feb

Some good food and good news from our Webster athletes in today’s mailbag.

St. Martin Lutheran Church, 813 Bay Rd., invites community members to attend their annual FREE Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper on Tuesday Feb. 25 (which just happens to be Mardi Gras!)

Dinner will include sausages, applesauce, and unlimited pancakes, served from 5 to 7 p.m. at the church. In honor of Mardi Gras, there’ll be beads and make-your-own mask crafts for the kids (and fun-loving adults). Feel free to come dressed in your best Mardi Gras finery!

All are welcome, so bring your whole family, and invite your friends. Call the church at 671-1899 with questions or to reserve seats .

The folks at St. Martin’s are holding this event in appreciation to the Webster community for its continuing support of all of its programs and missions. While the dinner if free, a free-will offering to support the church’s Little Free Pantry will be gratefully accepted.

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Now this notice about our Webster high school athletes doing great things for our community:

On Tuesday February 11, 2020, Webster Schroeder’s Hockey program organized and executed a successful community service even to address a very important topic: mental health.

Two hockey teams. One Webster. One fight. So many reasons. Beneath their armor of pads and skates, there are kind, caring individuals on our hockey teams who came together to raise awareness of NAMI Rochester (the Rochester chapter of the National Alliance for Mental Illness) in support of mental health.

The WCSD varsity hockey teams shared an important moment on the ice…where everyone was leveled by a single sheet of paper that signified a reason they fight. For someone, or a principle. Stopping and thinking about mental health and someone or a group of someones who are fighting a battle no one knows about. The boys filled out a sign and held it at the start of the game, both lineups facing the flag and recognizing the fight that may be in us all, even if we don’t know it.

Proceeds from the event — which included a raffle, Chuck-A-Puck contest and wristband sales — will be donated to NAMI Rochester.


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Webster Youth Sports Council PosterThe Webster Youth Sports Council will host sport psychologist Craig Cypher and a panel of local and regional health professionals for a discussion about “The Purpose of Youth Sports” on Thursday March 26 from 7 to 8:30 p.m.

The evening is billed as a “can’t-miss night of valuable sports-related information for parents, coaches and students.”

The panel will be held in the Webster Schroeder auditorium, 875 Ridge Rd. Child care will be available for children ages 3+.

For more information about the panel members, click on the poster.

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Hi, can we meet?

15 Feb

As you might imagine, I have access to a lot of statistics about my blog posts.

I can see how many people click through to my blogs every day, on what platform they’re finding the blog, even when the most popular times of day are.

6794So I know there are a lot of people out there reading my blog. But I have met relatively few of you.

I’d like to change that this coming Friday February 21. That afternoon, from noon to 3:30 p.m., I’ll be hanging out in the Webster Public Library lobby, probably with my computer in hand working on some blogs. I’d like to invite one and all to stop by for a few minutes to say hi, maybe set a while to chat about all things Webster.

Bring along your questions, blog ideas, flyers for your group’s upcoming special event, or that clipping you have on the fridge of your favorite blog (I like to think someone has done that!). Bring along your suggestions and your complaints.

But most of all, bring you. Because while statistics tell me that you are one of my regular readers, statistics are, by their very nature, impersonal. I would like to meet you.

If the event is successful, I’d like to try to have more regular meet-and-greets (or as one friend called it, “office hours”). Perhaps I could schedule a session at the library once a month, for example. Maybe even branch out and have one at the museum, or the Village Bakery.

But let’s start next Friday, Feb. 21, at the Webster Public Library, 980 Ridge Rd., at the back of Webster Plaza.  I’ll be there from noon to 3:30 p.m. I hope you will, too.

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There’s a new Webster Facebook page in town

13 Feb


Have you seen the new Webster Facebook page that appeared just after the first of the year? In a Facebook landscape where much of the “news” and chatter you find on community groups is filled with vitriol, the new page offers a measured, informative and upbeat look at what’s happening in and around Webster.

It’s called Webster People, Places, News and Events. It was created on January 1 by Webster resident Bob Blind, a name many of you probably are already familiar with.  Bob moderates the very popular and informative Webster, Where Life is Worth Living group. As its administrator, Bob makes sure that the  group remains upbeat and informative. It’s a place where negativity is not allowed, where — unlike other Webster Facebook pages — people don’t think everything about our lovely town is broken, smelly, too loud, too political, or just basically the worst it could ever be.

There’s only one unfortunate thing about that page, however. Because it’s a private group, none of its posts can be shared directly (although you can always cut and paste posts). For many people, that puts a damper on their desire to spread the good news they find there.

With the public (not private) Webster People, Places, News and Events, Bob has created a work-around. He calls it a “shareable extension” of the other group, and explains,

I created this page to help communicate various things happening in our town… So it is just another outlet, so to speak, for me to share Webster news that I see on other Facebook pages or in the news media. I am basically out to share the positive news and stories about our town because nobody else seems to be.

Webster People, Places, News and Events is a bright corner in an often dark and stormy Facebook world for people who just want to find out what’s happening around town. It’s even alerted me to a few events I didn’t know about.

Check it out for yourself by clicking here: Webster People, Places, News and Events

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