Lori Mahan

Lori Mahan

Thursday, 11 October 2018 15:50

Spina Bifida Doesn’t Stop Steve Remis

SARATOGA SPRINGS — From 9:30 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Oct. 13, Steve Remis will be using his brand-new hand cycle to take on the 18th Annual Great Pumpkin Challenge at Spa State Park. This will be Remis’ second Great Pumpkin Challenge and the first race he’s done with his new handcycle. Remis, 47, began racing via his hand cycle in 2016, the year in which he did a whopping six races.

“I don’t believe in the words ‘can’t or don’t.’ After doing all of the races I’ve done, I don’t feel like anything is impossible.” Remis says, of all components of his life, not just racing.

Paralyzed from the waist down from Spina Bifida, Remis carries on.

“I have an upper body that is like King Kong,” he said.

Remis does 10Ks using a handcycle, which is a humanpowered land vehicle powered by the arms rather than the legs.

“My assistant manager and I, from my group home, would take one of the vans and drive each course, so I would know where the hills were. My old handcycle had no power, just three speeds. It went down to two because I lost second gear. I don’t know how that happened,” he laughed.

Remis’ sister purchased a new handcycle for him this year, “to the tune of four-thousand dollars,” and now he is ready to race again. His new handcycle has five speeds, reverse, a parking brake, and a hand brake.

“I surprise people because they think I’m going to do the 5k and I’m like ‘5k? no, 10k!’ I’ve had people collapse in shock. That was with my old hand cycle which was like 40 years old,” he explained.


Remis’ first handcycle was purchased for him in 1978 by his mother after she saw an ad for one in the newspaper. He had been using a six-wheeled vehicle called a Well-Rider that was as low as a car’s headlights. He used that handcycle until just recently, it lasted 40 years. All of the money raised through The Great Pumpkin Challenge goes back into the programs and services provided by Saratoga Bridges, so Remis and his friends are directly affected by this race.

“[Racing is] very fulfilling, I enjoy it and have enjoyed it for the last few years that I’ve done it. It was a no-brainer, I’m doing The Great Pumpkin Challenge again this year,” Remis said.

He was hesitant about The Great Pumpkin Challenge at first though, because he hasn’t raced at all this year, then when he learned he was getting his new handcycle via
the mail on time, he was ready to go. 

“Back in 2016 I said, ‘I don’t race to win, I race to finish.’ so as long as I get across the finish line,” he said.


All of the money raised through The Great Pumpkin Challenge goes back into programs and services provided by Saratoga Bridges. 

Thursday, 11 October 2018 15:46

Local All-Star Moments

SRYMCA Over 50 Basketball League 2018-2019 Announcement
SARATOGA SPRINGS — Saratoga Regional YMCA Over 50 Basketball League will begin its 13th season. Signups are now open at the Membership Desk of any SRYMCA Branch, or online for YMCA Members at srymca. org. New Player Evaluation will be October 17, First Game schedule for October 31. Games are played Wednesday nights. Dues are $130 for members and $260 for non-members. Sponsors and Team Captains are needed. For additional info call Paige Minear at 518-583–YMCA (9622), ext 120.

Spa Catholic Volleyball
SARATOGA SPRINGS — Saratoga Central Catholic hosted Hoosic Valley in league play Saints won 3-0; scores 25-22,25-19,25-21. Highlights for the Saints: 10-1 league, 11-2 overall; Elise Browell 9 service points, 2 aces, 23 assist; MaryClare Pikus  4 kills, 5 digs Kennedy Murphy 5 kills, 4 digs; Grace O’Reilly 12 service points, 4 aces, 8 kills, 4 digs; Molly O’Reilly 10 service points, 6 aces, 3 digs. Highlights for the Indians: 3-9 league, 3-10 overall; Samantha Finkle 3 kills, 1 ace; Shannon Brown 3 kills, 5 assist; Olivia Smith 3 kills, 1 ace.

Saratoga Field Hockey
Saratoga at Nisky - Oct. 5
Scores made by: Kylie Folts; Lindsay Frank (3), one assisted by Katelyn Ginley; Haley Waghorn. 5-0 Toga
Saratoga at Glens Falls - Oct. 8
Scores made by: Haley Waghorn assisted by Lindsay Frank; Lindsay Frank assisted by 
Anna Dennett; Lindsay Frank assisted by Olivia Vukelic; Haley Waghorn; Grace Sablich assisted by Katelyn Ginley. 5-0 Toga

Oliver Huss Featured on American Ninja Warrior Junior
SARATOGA SPRINGS  — Oliver Huss, 9, whose family owns Saratoga Ninja Garage, will be featured on the brand-new season/show American Ninja Warrior Junior. Huss was cast for the show after submitting videos in his local garage and becoming a nationally ranked ninja star through competitions. The local ninja garage and the city of Saratoga Springs has hosted the TV show’s most famous stars, and now boast their very own local ninja celebrity. You can watch Huss compete to be the first American Ninja Warrior Junior Champion on Universal Kids, premiering October 13 at 7 p.m.

St. Michael’s College Volleyball
The Saint Michael’s College women’s volleyball team lost 3-1 to 2017 NCAA Tournament qualifier Saint Anselm College on Tuesday before taking Merrimack College to five sets and falling 3-2 on Thursday. Both matches were in Northeast-10 Conference play. First-year Grace Fornabia, of Saratoga Springs/ Saratoga Central Catholic, had six kills and a block.

Saratoga CSD Varsity Golf
SARATOGA SPRINGS — On Wednesday, Oct. 3, Saratoga Springs took the Section II Class A Golf Championship at McGregor Links Country Club, shooting 290 to win the team title over Albany Academy’s 315.

 

Thursday, 11 October 2018 15:43

Athlete of the Week: Chris Veitch

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Chris Veitch, a freshman at Saratoga Springs High School, has been a star polo athlete for the last four years and is even playing for the Yale intercollegiate team this year from October through March after they recruited him. After meeting Cuko Escapite, a polo player, at the Saratoga Polo Association through his grandmother, Annamaria Bonar and taking a lesson with Escapite, Veitch became enamored with the sport.

“I like the fact that you get to do a lot [with the sport]. You get to meet cool people and it’s fun to play. It’s a tough sport. The most challenging thing is learning how to start and there are a lot of rules that are involved with it,” Veitch said.

Veitch plays polo on his own horse, Honey, whom he purchased in April of this year. She is housed at Bloomfield Farms.

“We had owned a horse before Honey, but he wasn’t good [at polo] so then we went to Florida to buy another pony and we sold him,” he explained.

Veitch does not play any other sports. He is happy to be in high school instead of middle school now, because he is enjoying having more “independence.”

He cites his parents and his grandmother, Annamaria Bonar, as his biggest supporters in his polo journey. His grandmother even pays for most of his polo dues. Veitch worked at the Saratoga Polo Association this summer, grooming the horses and helping the players get ready. He plans to play polo as a career.

“There are a lot of opportunities that polo creates for jobs as well, between the people you meet and the fact that you can say you play polo,” he stated.

BALLSTON SPA — The students from the Clean Technologies and Sustainable Industries Early College High School (Clean Tech ECHS) in Malta recently participated in a series of regional manufacturing tours and activities with industry partners as part of National Manufacturing Month. Throughout the first week of October, juniors participated in tours across the region, including RASP Inc., located in Gansevoort, to learn about industrial controls manufacturing; Greno Industries in Schenectady to learn about the manufacturing process of machined parts including CNC precision machining; and P1 Package One Industries in Schenectady to learn about advanced manufacturing, design and engineering. The Center for Economic Growth (CEG) and the Clean Tech ECHS partnered on a manufacturing industry challenge that was presented to 11th and 12th grade students on October 3. CEG kicked off the event with a presentation about recycling and refining waste material in manufacturing and challenged students to identify solutions. Following the presentation, students investigated and developed solutions for reusing food and glass materials. Some students will continue to develop solutions as part of their Capstone Projects and will present them at the Grade Student Project Exhibition to parents, business partners and civic leaders later this semester. The Clean Tech ECHS was developed in 2011 by the Ballston Spa Central School District in partnership with Hudson Valley Community College (HVCC) and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). The program continues to leverage its relationship with over 45 leaders in business and industry, the New York State Education Department (NYSED), the State University of New York (SUNY) and HVCC to provide authentic learning experiences for students. The program has grown regionally from originally serving 25 students in two school districts, to now serving over 260 students from across 19 school districts in ten counties. Students in the program earn up to 30 college credits from HVCC in this ECHS model.  Students have the option to explore one of four career pathways including Clean Energy, Computer Science & Information Systems, Mechatronics, and Entrepreneurship, Leadership and Innovation. For more information about the Clean Tech ECHS, visit the website at www.bscsd.org/ cleanTech.cfm or please contact ECHS Coordinator Adrienne Snow at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 518-321-7274.

Thursday, 11 October 2018 15:35

Gun Ban at Saratoga Springs CSD

SARATOGA SPRINGS — After weeks of debate, the Saratoga Springs City School District board of education voted 5 to 4 on Tuesday, October 9, to end the practice of school hallway monitors carrying firearms. In a public forum in the beginning of the meeting, several community members, parents and students alike, came out in favor of voting no, while another community member and teacher urged the board to vote yes to keep the guns.

The people who spoke out against the guns reasoned that the school has not done enough research on the matter, commenting that there was “no task force, no committee, no public forums, no question-and-answer periods.”


Michelle King, a member of Saratoga Conservative Chicks, was in favor of a yes vote, explaining that the hallway monitors are there to protect their children and “they can’t do it without the tools.” Superintendent Michael Patton reminded those in attendance that the district’s main concern is the safety of the students and staff.

Thursday, 04 October 2018 14:39

S. T. O. P.

SARATOGA COUNTY — Jim Mangano, a licensed high school varsity girls’ soccer referee for the last 20 years, is involved with the S.T.O.P. Movement, which stands for: Stop Tormenting Officials Permanently. S.T.O.P. was started over a year ago by a referee named Brian Barlow, from Tulsa, Oklahoma whose goal is to decrease the incivility, violence, and referee abuse in all sports.

“The environment itself… Either it’s winning is everything or it’s the only thing that will make you happy is if you win,” said Mangano.

Mangano appears in all games that he refs wearing his S.T.O.P. vest. He spends time at each game talking to fans, players, and families about what the movement is and how they can help.

“When it comes down to a ref being on a field, we’re held to a standard where we can’t turn around and say anything, because for one, we’re licensed, we recertify every year in every group that we’re in. Then people look at us and say, ‘but you get paid to do this.’ So, it’s like I get paid to take the abuse. That just doesn’t fly,” Mangano explained.

Mangano has refed games where he’s taken it to the extremes. If he sees a player who is knowingly aggressive, he’ll blow the whistle before they actually do something to someone because from watching them, he knows they’re going to hit that person, which then puts him in a conundrum because the parents say there was no contact.

“One of the things I’ve also had to do over the years is intervene between parents and players on the field. I’ve had to say, ‘by yelling at them, you’re taking your child’s head out of the game.’ That’s a dangerous situation for them because they’re not focused, they might get hurt. Then that also leads to what comes back to us as refs is when they say, ‘you’re not looking out for the safety of our players,’” he explained.

As Mangano explains it, there are four different groups while refereeing a game: the coach, the parents, the players, and the refs.

“Everybody comes to the game, except the referee, because they want the win and they also point fingers. You call a foul on a player; the parents want revenge, the coach wants revenge,” Mangano said.

The bottom line is: Mangano has seen it all over the last 20 years. Parents physically fighting each other; parents and coaches threatening him and other refs; police officers having to escort refs off the field for their own safety. While he doesn’t imply that it’s every parent or coach who is volatile, it’s the few that are who put a damper on the environment for the rest.

“I haven’t refed a game in five years without having a cell phone in my pocket,” he explained.

Why?

Because he believes that if he can catch the bad behavior on video, parents and coaches alike would be too ashamed to act that way again.

For more information on the S.T.O.P. Movement, visit www. facebook.com/youreoffside, the original site for the movement created by Brian Barlow.

Thursday, 04 October 2018 17:50

Local All-Star Moments

 

SPA CATHOLIC VOLLEYBALL

- Saratoga Central Catholic hosted Mechanicville in a Wasaren League match on Thursday, Sept 27. The Saints won 3-0. Scores 25-18, 25-14,25-18. 
Highlights for the Saints: 7-1 league 7-2 overall; Catherine Darcy 20 service points, 9 aces, 3 digs; Elise Browell 11 assist, 8 service points, 2 aces; Kennedy Murphy 5 kills; MaryClare Pikus 5 digs; Grace O’Reilly 6 service, points 3 kills. 
Highlights for the Red Raiders: 5-3 league 7-3 overall; Kaitlin Coleman 7 service points, 3 aces, 6 assist; Lyndsay Robens 4 points, 2 kills.

- Saratoga Central Catholic hosted Tamarac in league play on Monday, Oct 1. The Saints won 3-0. Scores 25-20,25-18,25-20. 
Highlights for the Saints: 8-1 league, 8-2 overall; Elise Browell  11 points, 3 aces, 20 assist; Kennedy Murphy 8 kills; MaryClare Pikus  3 kills, 7 digs; Grace O’Reilly  11 points, 6 aces, 7 kills; Molly O’Reilly 11 points, 5 aces. 
Highlights for the Bengals: 6-5 league 7-5 overall; Maddie Murphy 6 blocks. 1 kill; Bella Realbuto 5 kills, 4 blocks; Kerianne Bugbee 3 kills, 4 blocks, 8 service points, 6 aces.

  

SARATOGA FIELD HOCKEY

MONDAY, OCT. 1: SARATOGA V. WARRENSBURG

FRIST HALF:
Saratoga 4 v. Warrensburg 1 
Saratoga Scoring: 
Lindsey Frank assisted by Molly Russell. 
Hunter Yourch assisted by Lindsey Frank. 
Kylie Folts assisted by Lindsey Frank.
Jane Ginley assisted by Danielle Geils.
Warrensburg Scoring:
Abigail Ranous assisted by Marina Callahan. 

SECOND HALF:
Saratoga Scoring: 
Olivia Vukelic 
Lindsey Frank 
Warrensburg Scoring: 
Sara Langworthy
Final Score:
Toga 6 v. Warrensburg 2 
Corners: Toga - 8 | Warrensburg - 7 
Shots: Toga - 30 | Warrensburg - 18 
Saratoga Goalies: Kristen Rodecker and Emma Piccirillo  - 11 saves 
Warrensburg Goalie: Bella DeAmelia - 15 saves 
Saratoga 9-2

 

ST. MICHAEL’S COLLEGE VOLLEYBALL

COLCHESTER, VT — In the home opener against Southern New Hampshire, St. Michael’s College first-year, Grace Fornabia, of Saratoga Springs/Saratoga Central Catholic had six kills and a block.

 

LOCAL FOOTBALL

SARATOGA COUNTY — The Saratoga Springs Blue Streaks walloped the visiting Niskayuna Silver Warriors football team by a count of 56-13 in Friday’s league outing. With the win, Saratoga Springs upgrades its record to 4-1 on the season. The Blue Streaks travel to Guilderland to confront the Flying Dutchman in a Section II AA outing on Friday, October 5. The Troy Flying Horses football squad scored 27 points and limited the host Ballston Spa Scotties to 14 in the Flying Horses non-league win on Friday, Sept. 28. The Flying Horses now possess a 4-1 record. They play next when they host Columbia for a Section II A- Capital battle on Friday, October 5. In Friday, Sept. 28, non-league match, the host Schuylerville Horses football squad scored a good 56-34 victory over the Schalmont Sabres. In their next game, the Horses clash with the Hudson Falls Tigers (Hudson Falls) in a Section II B-North match, on Saturday, October 6. Schuylerville will attempt to move on its 3-2 season record.

 

Thursday, 04 October 2018 17:46

Athlete of the Week: MaryClare Pikus

SARATOGA SPRINGS — MaryClare Pikus, a senior at Saratoga Central Catholic, is a star on the volleyball court. She has been playing volleyball for the last six years.

“The season is going great! Everyone on the team is working really hard and giving it their all, every single game,” Pikus said.

Pikus’ sister was also a volleyball player and watching her play inspired her to give it a try.

“My older sister played volleyball in high school and I watched almost every game when I was younger. Watching her and her team work hard together made me want to play volleyball myself, and I did as soon as I could in seventh grade,” Pikus explained.

Aside from volleyball, she also played softball for six years and stopped last season.

Teamwork makes the dream work and Pikus is inspired and in awe of her team.

“We all get along so well and it makes the experience so much fun. Playing volleyball with my team is like playing with a group of my close friends. I am going to miss it very much,” she said.

While Coach Maria Izzo has high praise for Pikus, she has high praise for her beloved coach as well.

“Coach Izzo is a great coach. She always knows what to say and when to say it. She can pick us back up when we begin to fall down in games and tells us exactly what we need to hear,” Pikus complimented.

She credits her dad as her biggest supporter.


“He always comes to my matches, even if they are a long distance away. He always makes me feel better when I don’t play my best during tough matches,” she said. Pikus has big dreams for the next ten years. “I hope to be a neuroscientist and work on research to help those with memory issues and other diseases affecting the brain,” she stated.

To see Pikus and the Spa Catholic Saints in action, check out our Sports at a Glance page for upcoming matches.

Thursday, 04 October 2018 17:43

Skidmore Excellence

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Skidmore College has recently been recognized in national rankings for their excellence in liberal arts, innovation, and student life. Skidmore has been ranked No. 41 by U.S. News and World Report in the National Liberal Arts Colleges; ranked in the top 50 for “Most Innovative Schools;” “High School Counselor Rankings;” “Best Value Schools;” and “Best Undergraduate Teaching.” Skidmore was also on The Princeton Review’s 2019 list of The Best 384 Colleges, along with earning top 50 positions in the “Best Campus Food,” “Great Financial Aid,” and “Best Quality of Life” categories.

It was also listed as a “10 Best Green School in America” by The Knowledge Review magazine and a “Top 50 Green College” by the Princeton Review in 2017. Among other accolades, Skidmore is also considered a “Hidden Ivy.” Skidmore does not submit themselves for these accolades, rather, they let their publicly available information and data speak for them, as well as student surveys.

“We have a wonderfully inclusive community at Skidmore. We don’t have fraternities and sororities and I think as a result there is a cohesiveness to the community that’s very appealing to students. There’s also a supportive environment amongst students, and that contributes to quality of life,” said Mary Lou Bates, vice president and dean of admissions and financial aid.

A typical class size for Skidmore is roughly 690 students and this past year they had just under 11,000 applications. The reason the campus earned a top spot with their food? The students have a say in the menu.

“They provide feedback on a bulletin board in the dining hall and our award-winning Culinarians use that input when making their menus and recipes. Students also offer ideas for special themed meals —like our upcoming Nightmare Before Christmas and Harry Potter dinners. We create our own four-week rotational cycle each semester and adjust it based on the seasons and student feedback. We use only high-quality ingredients and support local farms and businesses as much as possible,” explained Mark Miller, director of dining services.

Skidmore’s sustainability program speaks for itself.

“The Sustainability Office serves as a hub for sustainability at Skidmore. While we lead several student programs and initiatives on campus, we also partner with colleagues across campus and with community members and organizations in Saratoga Springs, all with the goal of advancing sustainability in our community. Sustainability is a broad concept and requires collective community effort, which has been growing for decades at Skidmore,” said Levi Rogers, director of sustainability programs and assessment.

Tucked away in Saratoga Springs has a lot of advantages.

“Our location in Saratoga Springs is a significant factor in students’ decisions to choose Skidmore. They like the fact that they are in a city but it’s not an urban environment. Saratoga Springs is a city with lots going on, with a strong cultural base and great restaurants and coffee shops — it complements everything that happens on campus. Students like being in the beautiful foothills of the Adirondacks and having easy access to New York City, Boston and Montreal,” Bates explained.

If anyone is on the fence about attending Skidmore, Bates has the perfect pitch for that: “What makes Skidmore unique is our strong sense of community, the breadth of choice and flexibility in our curriculum and programs, our outstanding faculty and our interdisciplinary approach that equips students for success.”

SARATOGA SPRINGS - The Saratoga Springs City School District will honor five individuals for their extraordinary contributions to athletics for the 2018 Blue Streak Athletic Hall of Fame induction ceremony at 4:30 p.m. Friday, October 12 in the Robert Meade Teaching Auditorium at Saratoga Springs High School. The program was established to recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of athletes, coaches, administrators and supporters.

This year’s inductees are Brianne Bellon, Claudia Didziulis, Rory Pedrick, Bill Scott, and Lawrence Youngblood.

Brianne Bellon, class of 2010 and member of the undefeated cross-country team, which was the suburban council, sectional, and federation champions for five years. Bellon is the current 800-meter record holder for Saratoga Springs.

Claudia Didziulis, class of 1952, participated in varsity basketball, varsity cheerleading and varsity softball. She received the first ever Section 2 Athletic Director’s Secretary of the Year Award in 1999 at the NYS Athletic Administrators Conference.

Rory Pedrick, class of 2004, participated in varsity football and varsity lacrosse. He earned the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame Scholar Athlete Award. Pedrick went on to play Division 1 Lacrosse at UMASS and made it to the National Championship. Pedrick was the first Blue Streak to be recognized twice on ESPN’s “Play of the Day.”

Bill Scott, class of 1929, participated in varsity football, varsity basketball, and varsity baseball at Saratoga Springs High School. He became the Athletic Director for Ballston Spa where he began the sports program and was the first football, baseball, and basketball coach.

Lawrence “Toby” Youngblood, class of 1975, participated in varsity basketball and varsity baseball. He was awarded Outstanding Male Athlete, Section 2 Leader in stolen base percentage, baseball’s most valuable player, and was a Booster Club Award Winner. Mr. Youngblood is currently involved in the Saratoga American Little League, high school sports, NY Mets semipro baseball team, and Black Student Alliance All-Star Basketball.

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  • Nicholas A. Bliek, age 26, Ballston Spa, was charged Oct. 14 with criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th- misdemeanor.  Kevin D. Germain, age 59, Saratoga Springs, was charged Oct. 14 with criminal tampering in the third degree- misdemeanor; trespass.  Yaitza E. Rivera-Vazquez, age 35, Schenectady, was charged Oct. 14 with menacing 3rd- misdemeanor; criminal possession of a weapon 4th degree- misdemeanor.  Kiernan H. Mack, age 22, Schenectady, was charged Oct. 14 with obstructing governmental administration second- misdemeanor. pl 205.30- - resisting arrest- misdemeanor.  Mark B. Baldwin, age 29, Ballston Spa, was charged Oct. 14 with aggravated driving while intoxicated-…

Property Transactions

  • TOWN OF BALLSTON  16 Carriage Run, $730,000. Craig and Catherine Todd sold property to Richard and Samantha Lagace. 69 Cornerstone Dr., $264,600. Traditional Builders LTD sold property to Myra Johnson.  87 McMaster St., $278,000. Gregory and Tara Vukelic sold property to Robert Tole.  12 McLean St., $130,000. Kathleen Kuznia sold property to John and Leta Betor.  64 Cypress St., $340,320. Heritage Builders Group LLC sold property to Robert and Roberta Hayward. CHARLTON 2190 Route 67, $283,250. Maureen Sauter sold property to Scott Comeau and Charon Feathers.  14 Komar Dr., $187,500. John Keil sold property to Gary Drew.  CORINTH 15 Paris…
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