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Welcome to the new pastor of the Webster Baptist Church

24 Jan
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David Spiegel, new pastor at Webster Baptist Church, with his wife Martha

A warm Webster welcome to the new pastor at the Webster Baptist Church!

David Spiegel officially began his duties last Sunday, January 19.

In his first church newsletter column, Dave told his congregants a little about himself:

I am Rev. Dr. David J. Spiegel, Sr. As proud as I am of the titles that I have earned the right to use, I prefer to be called Dave or David. I have been married to Martha for 35 years. We have 2 children, Shannon and DJ. Shannon, married to James, is the mother of William. DJ, married to Nicole, is the father of Delilah, Colton, Jack, Micah, Thea and Gideon.

I was born and raised in New Jersey. I have three sisters and a brother, Cindy, Lil, Becky and Rich, and they are each amazing people. My parents, Sid and Barbara, are both deceased.

I am a graduate of Northwestern College (BA), Eastern Baptist Theological Seminary (MDiv.) and New Brunswick Theological Seminary (D. Min.). I love reading, cooking and sports. I am a fan of the New York Mets, Jets, Knicks and Rangers and the University of Arizona Wildcats.

I took the liberty of editing his comments, but if you would like his full column,  click here.

(And let’s see if we can turn him into a Bills fan.)

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The next Webster Museum docent?

23 Jan

Edison PoppHere’s a wonderful tidbit from our Webster Museum and how the folks there are changing young lives.

The photo above is of 7-year old Edison Popp. His grandmother, Marianne Ferrara, had taken him to the Webster Museum where Sharon Pratt and Lisa McNamara were serving as docents. They gave him a tour of the museum, and he was so impressed that, upon returning home, he set up his own museum and acted as docent.

As for me, I would love to know what some of those objects are and am very impressed that he had access to all of them. I see a college history major in the future.

Haven’t visited the Webster Museum yourself lately? Make sure to pop in soon to see their latest exhibits. Perhaps you will also be inspired, juts as Edison was. The museum is located at 18 Lapham Park in the Village of Webster, open 2-4 p.m. every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

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Good hockey, great cause

27 Dec

Capture

If you like hockey (or even if you don’t), and want to help support an awesome cause, I have the perfect event for you next week, on Friday Jan. 3 at the Webster Ice Arena on Publisher’s Parkway.

It’s the Webster Beats Brain Tumors benefit hockey game putting Webster Schroeder vs. West Irondequoit. The annual event has been organized for the last four years by Webster Schroeder grad Marshal Scheidt as his way of giving back to the URMC medical staff who saved his life.

Here, allow Marshal himself to tell his story:

When I was in high school at Webster Schroeder I was diagnosed with a large brain tumor my freshman year and I used my desire to play hockey again to keep my spirits high through surgery and rehabilitation. I was able to “beat the odds” and play the game I love again.

When the tumor grew back my senior year, I played the second half of the season knowing that there was a tumor on my brain and I would undergo surgery again after the year was over. The amazing doctors, nurses, and medical staff at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) saved my life and I’ve always wanted to give back. Without the game of hockey I’m not sure I would have been as motivated to go through everything that went along with surgery, rehab, and radiation.

Because of this I have created the Webster Beats Brain Tumors fundraiser (formerly Brockport Beats Brain Tumors). This is the fourth year we have hosted this event to raise money and awareness for brain tumors. … This is a perfect way to give back, and together, we can make this horrific experience a little easier for kids in the future.

After the game, everyone is invited to convene at Buntzy’s Sports Bar, 2235 Empire Blvd. for a concert by Dawgs For a Cauz, more games and prizes.

Marshal’s goal this year is to raise $7,000, which will be donated to the Brain Tumor Care Fund to support care for patients with brain tumors and their family members and caregivers during all stages of treatment.

There are several ways you can support the cause, even without attending the game:

  • Make out a check to University of Rochester Medical Center with “Webster Beats Brain Tumors” in the memo, mailed ATTN: Brooke Whowell, 300 E River Rd, Rochester, NY 14627.
  • Make a secure gift online at event.urmc.edu/braintumorcare
  • Donate a raffle item for the raffle. Email mscheidt27@yahoo.com to arrange pick up of donated item.
  • Attend the game on Jan. 3 at 6 p.m. at the Webster Ice Arena, 865 Publishers Parkway. All proceeds from the raffle and promotional items will be donated to URMC.
  • Celebrate at Buntsy’s at 8:30 with the Dawgs For a Cauz concert
  • Volunteer: Email Marshal at mscheidt27@yahoo.com for more information.

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The stories are still being told

16 Dec

WAHAS_11x17_PosterIf you haven’t stopped by the Webster Public Library yet to check out the We All Have a Story: The Stories Continue photography exhibit, I highly recommend you take the time to do so in the next few weeks.

The exhibit, created by local portrait photographer and Webster Central School District employee Linda Hayes, takes a closer look at the lives and stories of 21 WCSD staff members to help illuminate the people inside the classrooms and offices who work with our children every day. The stories are thought provoking, happy and sad. But more than anything else, they’ll probably make you think, “Wow, I never realized that.”

My story is among them. I tell my story about how three simple — but powerful — words a teacher spoke to me many years ago changed my life and inspired me to become a writer.

You will probably know at least one other of the participants, which also include:

  • Joe Montemaro, WCSD Director of Technology
  • Elizabeth Livorsi, Spry math teacher
  • Elizabeth Ristow-Klem, Klem South music teacher
  • Sandy McCormack, retired Wilink special education teacher
  • Ashley Yang, Webster Thomas Social Studies teacher
  • Karen Murray, Webster Thomas administrator and Chester French, retired Buildings and Grounds
  • Kyle Suffoletto, Webster Thomas English teacher and his father Mike Suffoletto, current school board member
  • Diane Huot, Plank South literacy teacher
  • Marnie Weinmann, Plank North kindergarten teacher
  • Leslie Jones, Klem South literacy teacher
  • Julie Provenzano, Schlegel speech pathology teacher
  • Krista Lawton, Webster Schroeder English teacher
  • Hannah Formella, Webster Schroeder speech pathology teacher, with Julius, her therapy dog
  • Kelly Stevens, State Rd. art teacher
  • Leslie Hall, Webster Schroeder foreign language teacher
  • Martha Sullivan, Webster Thomas English teacher
  • Patty Cooke, Webster Schroeder guidance counselor
  • Sarah Harding, Klem North PE teacher

It’s worth a few minutes to check them all out, so next time you’re at the library, take the time to do so. Or make a point to stop by before the exhibit closes.

The exhibit runs the entire month of December, and is open to the public during the library’s normal business hours, Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday from 10 to 6, Saturday from 10 to 5 and Sunday from 1 to 4. (The library will be closed for the holidays on December 24, 25, and 31.)

The library is located at 980 Ridge Rd., its main entrance on Van Ingen Drive at the back of the plaza.

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We all have a story — even your kids’ teachers

30 Nov

You know how sometimes children are surprised to learn that their teachers don’t live at school, don’t spend all their after-school hours in the classroom, and don’t ever have to go shopping at Wegmans?

Adults, of course, are more enlightened, but it’s still easy to assume that during the school year, teachers are almost entirely focused on their jobs and they otherwise lead rather humdrum, uninteresting lives.

WAHAS_11x17_PosterPhotographer Linda Hayes of Hayes Photography hopes to change that perception with her current exhibition, We All Have a Story: The Stories Continue. 

The exhibit, which will be on display at the Webster Public Library all next month, is a follow-up to Hayes’ first We All Have a Story exhibit in spring of 2018.

Hayes is a portrait photographer and Webster School District (WCSD) teaching assistant who has created images of 21 of her WCSD colleagues. Each staff member also submitted a narrative of his or her life story to share next to their photos.

The exhibit takes a closer look at the lives and stories of these WCSD staff members to help illuminate the people inside the classrooms and offices who work with our children every day. The stories are thought provoking, happy and sad. But more than anything else, they will probably make you think, “Wow, I never realized that.”

The exhibit, which runs the entire month of December, will be open to the public during the library’s normal business hours, Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday from 10 to 6, Saturday from 10 to 5 and Sunday from 1 to 4. (The library will be closed for the holidays on December 24, 25, and 31.)

The public is invited to an opening reception on Tuesday Dec. 3 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.  Both the exhibit and reception are open to the public. The Webster Public Library is located at 980 Ridge Road.

I’ll be at the reception; I’m pleased and honored to say that I’ve been included in this project. If you come to see the exhibit, you’ll read how three simple — but powerful — words changed my life, helped me realize my passion and convinced me to become a writer.

I hope to see you there!

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Blood drive honors Colin Montesano

27 Nov

You have an opportunity on Saturday to honor a life ended too soon, while helping to save others.

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A blood drive being held Saturday Nov. 30 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Webster Schroeder High School honors the memory of Schroeder graduate Colin Montesano, Schroeder class of 2014, who passed away suddenly two years ago at age 21.

Colin had wanted to dedicate his life to helping others by becoming a physician and studied at the University of Pittsburgh. He was also an active community volunteer and talented athlete. He was also an organ donor, so Donate Life will also be at the blood drive signing people up to be organ donors. Anyone who donates blood, signs up to be an organ donor or already is an organ donor can enter to win raffle baskets and gift cards from local businesses.

Here are the drive details:

Blood Drive in honor of Colin Montesano
Saturday, November 30, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Webster Schroeder High School library
875 Ridge Road, Webster. Walk-ins are welcome.

Aside from this being a great thing to do in Colin’s memory, this is also a critical time of year for blood donations. Donations decline significantly from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day as people get busy with holiday activities, so the Red Cross really needs your help.

If you can’t make today’s drive, here are a few other local opportunities coming up in the next weeks:

  • Visiting Nurse Service, 2180 Empire Blvd., Webster:  Friday Dec. 6, 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
  • St. Martin’s Lutheran Church, 813 Bay Rd., Webster:  Tuesday Dec. 10 from 1 to 6 p.m.
  • Webster Knights of Columbus, 70 Barrett Drive:  Wednesday Dec. 11 from 1 to 7 pm.

BONUS! Anyone donating between Nov. 25 and Dec. 18 will receive a $5 Amazon gift card by email from Suburban Propane.

Walk-ins are welcome, but appointments are encouraged (and help you get in and out a little faster). Call 1-800 RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or log onto RedCrossBlood.org.

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“All roads lead to Barry’s”

10 Nov

staff

By all accounts, last night’s 8th anniversary party for Barry’s Old School Irish was the most memorable special event yet at our little pub.

As with every one of Barry’s special events, the place was packed to the rafters, and a good two dozen people were even braving the chilly weather on the patio. If you weren’t there, you missed a rockin’ set by Billy Herring, a bagpiper, Irish dancers, pub-wide singing, and Danny’s annual epic toast, which this year stretched to seven hand-written pages.

As one who’s been part of the Barry’s Pub family since it opened, I often look back and marvel at all the good friends I have made there. There was a time when pretty much any night of the week, I could look around and know most of the people who were sitting at the bar and tables.

That’s not the case any more, of course. Barry’s is no longer a well-kept secret, and I often whine (in jest) that Danny and Jess keep letting in new people that I don’t know.

But I wouldn’t have it any other way. Danny and Jess have created something unique and special. They have stayed true to their dream, and remain clearly focused on what’s most important when running a business: everyone — from the first-time visitor to one of the original “Friday night” regulars — is family, and family always comes first.

In Danny’s toast, he told the story about how when he and his family were driving around Dublin earlier this year, another car pulled up next to them and started honking the horn. The driver was wearing a Barry’s Old School Irish t-shirt.

All roads lead to Barry’s, and their loving influence is reaching around the world.

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Photos of this year’s pet costume winners

3 Nov

 

GE

Better late than never, I present today photos of this year’s pet costume contest winners!

This contest has been run for the last few years during the village’s Trick-or-Treat Trail, but it’s been difficult to get the word out and actually get people and their dogs to meet up at the appointed time and place. So this year, Peter Elder — who organizes the contest every year — came up with a creative solution.

He wrote,

My son and I served as judges for the dog costume contest and since we could not find anyone gathered in front of Village Hall, we spread out through the (very large) crowd and found several dogs and their owners in costumes. After passing through once, we went back and awarded them first second and third prizes.

Peter added that this was “an excellent strategy for making the people and the dogs happy. … People loved being stopped and given gift cards.”

The three lucky winners this year are included here.

Make sure to get out there and trick or treat with your pup next year, ’cause you never know…you might get a treat yourself!

Also, we’re hoping to resurrect the business-sponsored scarecrow contest next year as well, so watch for more news about that!

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Thoughts on the First Responders 5K

2 Sep
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(Photo courtesy Mary White)

An amazing 625 people — both adults and children — participated in the second annual First Responders 5K on Friday night, which began on Sanford Street near Firemen’s Field and wound through the east side of Webster village.  It’s an impressive number considering it was the start of Labor Day weekend AND it was a Friday night, two very good reasons that race participants might have had other things to do or places to be.

But again this year, Webster and our surrounding communities showed how incredibly

holly and me

Before the race with my friend Holly. (Courtesy Mary White)

supportive they are of our first responders. And not only did the race attract a lot of runners, but the number of village residents who took the time to sit out front of their homes and cheer the runners as we raced by was heartening and very much appreciated.

Kudos to all of the firefighters and police officers who ran in their full gear; the weather was much improved over last year’s heat and humidity, but it must have still been a struggle to complete the 3.1-mile course while wearing many pounds of gear.

I took a few pictures, but not as many as our favorite Turkey Trot photographer Mary White. I’ve posted a few here, but if you’d like to see a lot more, click this link for an entire gallery.

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Race in Webster Village Friday night will affect traffic

29 Aug

first responders

If you find yourself driving in and around the Village of Webster on Friday night, be prepared for some possible temporary road closures.

The second annual First Responders 5K will be winding its way through (mostly) the east side of the village Friday night Aug. 30, beginning at 6:30 p.m. 

first responders logoThe race is designed to raise awareness of PTSD in first responders, and raise funds for FRST Agency, a newly created organization that will provide support, awareness, assets, and services to first responders seeking assistance in dealing with the effects of PTSD.

It will begin at 6:30 p.m. on Sanford St., on the south side of Firemen’s Field. Runners will head east down Sanford Street to South Ave., and then snake their way through the east-side neighborhoods before returning to Firemen’s Field. The course will take runners along Fuller Ave., Dunning Ave., Meadow Dr., Southwick Dr., Hawley Dr., Judson St., Harmon St., and Curtice Park, requiring temporary restrictions on these streets. In addition, Rt. 250 between State Rd. and Main St. will be closed for a short time and restricted for about an hour.

Click here for a map of the race route.

Organizers have mailed notices to all the affected residents on these streets, noting that while some streets will be closed during certain times, local residential traffic will be delayed but accommodated. So it’s not like you’re going to be trapped at home — or stuck on Main Street — for the entire race.

However, if you live on one of these streets and CAN afford to be stuck at home, please consider pitching a chair or two in your driveway and come out to cheer on the runners. As a frequent participant at races like these (and I will be running Friday night as well), I can attest to how great it feels to have people along the route encouraging you, ringing cowbells and handing out high-fives. This is a great community event, and it would be awesome to see the community come out in force to support it. (The race will run by my house twice, so I’ve convinced my husband to offer a special “water” stop for first responders in gear.)

If you’d like to participate as a runner OR walker, registration will be open on-site up to the start of the race. Just look for the registration tent at Firemen’s Field after 5 p.m. that evening.

For more information about the race, or to register online, click here.

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