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Displaying items by tag: Fundraiser
South Glens Falls High’s Arcade Themed Danceathon
South Glens Falls — For 42 years the South Glens Falls High School has hosted a Danceathon to raise money for charity organizations and individuals in need of assistance. This year, $837,859.97 was raised and will be distributed among 70 recipients.
Waldorf School Brings the Circus Back to Town
SARATOGA SPRINGS – Children and families took an adventure through time and space in the fields near the Saratoga Casino Hotel as Circus Smirkus returned to town. The renowned Vermont-based youth circus promotion made its way back to Saratoga Springs from July 11-12, once again with the collaboration of the Waldorf School of Saratoga Springs. This year marks the show’s 30th anniversary, and the wild theme this year was designed to evoke a sense of its history. While certainly a grand afternoon out for many families in the area, the event also serves as one of the school’s biggest yearly fundraising opportunities, bringing in a significant amount for the school’s general operating budget.
The theme of this year’s show is “Midnight at the Museum,” which sees three young performers staying the night at the otherworldly “Smirksonian” museum. After a bit of mischief results in “The Archives” being opened against the express warning of the museum’s curator, all of the exhibits spring to life and serve as the basis for the show’s various set pieces. The general feel of the story being told by Circus Smirkus is most similar to the “Night at the Museum” film series.
Some of the set pieces in this year’s show include ones themed around jungles, skeletons, pirates, astronauts, and one particular inventive sequence based around a museum heist. One of the more striking performances early on came from 16-year-old Isabella Majzun, who performed a mesmerizing juggling routine while also balancing herself on a large ball. Artistic director for the show and head clown Troy Wunderle said that the museum theme was chosen deliberately, as it allows them to pay homage to Circus Smirkus’s 30-year history. Many of the individual set pieces in the show are references to themes from previous years.
One thing that should immediately stand out to viewers is the youth of the performers in the show. According to Wunderle, the performers range in age from 12-18, and come from all over the country. One performer, 18-year-old Patrick Chikoloma, is from as far away Lusaka, Zambia. While the performers may be young, Wunderle said that they are entirely professional, as anyone who watches their polished and skillful performances can attest. The teens in the show are properly trained in a variety of different circus arts programs. Quite often, Circus Smirkus serves as a springboard for careers in the circus industry, as Wunderle noted that past performers have gone on to work in world-renowned promotions like Cirque du Soleil and Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus.
This year marks the 11th time that the Waldorf School has worked with Circus Smirkus to bring the show to Saratoga Springs. On a yearly basis, the show has been one of the school’s biggest fundraising opportunities, bringing in around $20,000-30,000, according to administrator Anne Maguire. Funds raised with Circus Smirkus go towards the school’s general operations budget, which includes salaries, building maintenance, and more.
Maguire also said that working with Circus Smirkus helps encourage students to pursue interests in circus arts, as the school itself offers a Juggling and Circus Arts Club, where students can learn to do all the various tricks and techniques they might have seen under the big top. Two Waldorf students have in the past performed with Circus Smirkus.
Photos by www.photoandgraphic.com.
Golf Classic a Personal Endeavor for Organizers
SARATOGA SPRINGS – The upcoming Golf Classic and Par-Tee fundraiser event on June 5 is more than just a good deed for a good cause for some of those involved with it. For them, it is also a deeply personal endeavor.
Gathered in the back of a local coffee shop for their usual meeting, several women involved in organizing the upcoming golf fundraiser talked about how the event’s mission to help find a cure for Type-1 diabetes has touched their lives, whether it be that they have lived with the disease themselves, have children with it, or both. Funds raised from the event will go to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund, which helps to fund research into the treatment of Type-1 diabetes.
Type-1 diabetes is caused by an autoimmune disorder that hinders the production of insulin in the body. Its causes are unknown, although a family history of the disease is known to increase one’s risk of developing it. It is important to note its differences from Type-2 diabetes, a metabolic disorder caused by poor diet and lack of exercise. Due to the fact that Type-2 accounts for around 90-percent of diabetes cases, public perception can often be that it is the only form of the disease, which is a source of great frustration for those who develop Type-1 through no fault of their dietary or lifestyle choices.
For Joyce Ure, Denise Nicastro, and Karen Larkin, the attachment is through their children, who all live with the disease. When Ure’s son began exhibiting symptoms consistent with Type-1 when he was eight, she thought it could not be true due the lack of history with the disease, but after he was taken to Albany Medical and found to have a blood sugar of 680, the diagnosis was clear. For Ure, the hope for the event is that it will also help spread awareness for the symptoms of the disease. Nicastro’s daughter was diagnosed early in life and is now a student in college. With her daughter so far away most times of the year, it leaves her with a lot of anxiety.
Larkin’s son was diagnosed when he was six, and has lived with the disease for the last four years. Over those years, she has noticed definite improvements in the technology for treating and monitoring diabetic symptoms, a sentiment supported by everyone at the table. A few of them mentioned apps on their phones and watches that allow them to monitor their children’s blood sugar levels at all times anywhere. These technologies were not around only a few years ago, they said, and developments like these show the benefits of raising money for organizations like the JDRF.
For Ellen Brodie, Type-1 is just about her entire life, as both she and her two children are living with the disease.
“My personal attachment is my life, and its my kids’ lives,” Brodie said. “That’s about as personal as it gets.”
The Golf Classic and Par-Tee will be held at Saratoga National Golf Club on June 5, starting at 11:30 a.m. For the first time this year, the Golf Classic and Par-Tee events will be combined into one event, as opposed to years prior when they were separate affairs. The organizers estimated that the two separate events in the past have raised over $200,000 a year for the JDRF. More information about the event can be found online at www.jdrf.org/neny/events/hoffman-car-wash-hoffman-jiffy-lube-golf-classic-and-par-tee/#event-details.
Scotties Stampede a Success Once Again
BALLSTON SPA – The second annual Scotties Stampede was another success for the Ballston Spa Central School District. Held on May 20, the 5K race and fundraiser brought in over 200 participants. While an exact figure is not yet available, race director Madeleine Petraglia estimates that several thousand dollars were raised at the event.
Proceeds from the race will go to support the Ballston Spa Partnership for Innovation in Education Fund, a part of the larger Community Foundation for a Greater Capital Region. Some of the programs that the fund supports include Sponsor-A-Scholar, the robotics club, “Performing & Fine Arts” programs, STEM enrichment initiatives, and the Clean Technologies & Sustainable Industries Early College High School. Many of these programs are key reasons why Ballston Spa Central School District has recently been highlighted as featuring one of the best high schools in the nation, being ranked 1,374 out of 22,000 schools by the US News & World Report’s Best High Schools list.
This year’s top three male finishers were Joey Vesic, 16, of Malta – who finished first overall across the entire race – Tyson Evensen, 35, of Saratoga Springs, and Vincent Mascardi III, 15, of Malta. The top three female finishers were Gabby Schreffer, 23, of Betnal, Dana Wiwczar, 41, of Malta, and Katherine Quinn, 20, of Niskayuna. Full race results can be found online at www.albanyrunningexchange.org.
Additionally at the event, the Ballston Spa Teachers Association distributed over 1,200 free books to attendees through their Book Bonanza program. This brings the total number of books the group has distributed over the course of 2017 to over 9,500.
The third annual Scotties Stampede is tentatively scheduled for May 19, 2018.
All photos by www.photoandgraphic.com.
Student Athletes Give Back: Schuylerville Youth Lacrosse Hosts Benefit Shootout
SCHUYLERVILLE – Continuing the trend of raising money to fight cancer last weekend, the Schuylerville Youth Lacrosse team hosted a benefit shootout to raise money for the family of community member Mike Podkladek, who is currently in treatment for a brain tumor. The event was held at Schuyler Park on May 13, and the team estimates that anywhere from 700 to 1,000 people were in attendance. In all, over $8,000 was raised for the Podkladek family.
Mike Podkladek, along with wife Beth, is a member of the Schuylerville community and the parent of three – Jordan, Callie, and Braden. In the past, he has frequently volunteered in his children’s sports, including softball, football, hockey, and lacrosse. In November of 2016, he was diagnosed with a brain tumor that required surgery. After having his initial tumor removed, pathology reports came back which said that he had Grade 4 Glioblastoma, an untreatable cancerous brain tumor. He has since been fortunate enough to be entered into a clinical trial at Sloan Kettering Hospital in New York City, where he and his wife travel to for treatments every other Tuesday.
The event saw 14 5-6 grade youth lacrosse teams from across the area in attendance. During the scheduling meeting back in March, Schuylerville coach Wayne Durr asked the others teams if they would be willing to attend the event. Upon hearing that it would be a benefit, many local programs cancelled their round robins in order to attend. Teams from Ballston Spa, Burnt Hills, Columbia, Glens Falls, Queensbury, Saratoga Springs, Scotia, and Stillwater made it to the event. Each team competed in three games and took part in a “Fastest Shot” competition.
The Podkladek family is still accepting donations from the public through a GoFundMe page. Any readers interested in donating to the family should go to www.gofundme.com/mike-podkladek-family-support-fund.
Student Athletes Give Back: Saratoga Baseball Hosts Benefit Game
SARATOGA SPRINGS – This year’s senior game carried extra importance for the Saratoga Varsity baseball team.
In addition to honoring the team’s senior players, the May 13 non-league game against Schuylerville was also used to raise money for cancer research. To this end, the team raised money in a number of ways, including selling t-shirts. Saratoga Coach Andy Cuthbertson decided that the money should be raised in the name of Tracy Hogben, a long-time Saratoga Springs City School District substitute teacher, recent full-time employee at Lake Avenue Elementary, and parent of five children currently enrolled in the district alongside her husband, Gordon. Three of their children – Gordon Jr., Harrison, and Griffin – play baseball for Saratoga.
On Oct. 18 of last year, Hogben suffered a seizure at home, which led to her diagnosis on Oct. 25 of a Right Frontal Lobe Primary Brain Tumor. After 13 days at Albany Medical Center and a craniotomy, Hogben was found to have an Oligodendreglioma, a Grade 2 primary brain tumor.
Hogben attended the benefit game and threw out the first pitch in front of around 500 people in attendance. Both the Saratoga Springs and Schuylerville communities have taken part in raising money, and have, as of May 16, raised $4,989. Donations are still being collected, and once collection is finished, the money will be donated to the Albany Medical Center Brain Tumor Research Fund.
“The community did a fantastic job of stepping up to support one of our own families in need,” Robin Chudy said. “The money raised will be a donation to Albany Medical Center as it will provide resources to continue to look for possible cures for cancer.”
According to Chudy, many parents got involved by setting up food tables for the game, as well as by creating a program for the game that included pages dedicated to the Hogben family, as well as pages for all seven senior players. Far from just working towards a noble cause, it was a great day all around for the Blue Streaks as they beat Schuylerville 6-0.
Al photos by www.photoandgraphic.com.
Fighting for a Cause: Local Boxing Night Raises Money for Bob Miller Fund
SARATOGA SPRINGS – Amateur boxers came together in Saratoga Springs this past weekend to fight for a good cause.
On March 25, the Saratoga Springs City Center played host to a night of amateur boxing to honor and raise money for celebrated Capitol Region boxing promoter, Bob Miller. Miller, a 60-year industry veteran and founder of the Uncle Sam Boxing Club in Troy, was in a serious car accident on Oct. 15 of last year that left him paralyzed. Shortly after, the Miller family established the Bob Miller Fund, a GoFundMe campaign with the goal of raising money to help cover Miller’s expenses, including “his medical care, the equipment (e.g., wheelchair, braces) he will need, and lodging for Linda, our father's wife, and the immediate family so that we can continue to support him during his long rehabilitation away from home,” according to the page’s description.
Doors opened for the event at 6:30 p.m., with the first bout commencing at 7:30 p.m. A total of 13 bouts took place over the course of the show, which drew around 850 attendees. According to city center executive director Ryan McMahon, when factoring in volunteers and trainers, the total attendance number for the night was closer to 1,000.
“Very strong,” McMahon said about the night’s attendance figures.
Some of the bouts on the card included Schuylerville-native Joey Barcia against Francis Hogan of Boston, Alison Watson of Vermont against Jamere Shelby of Albany, Malachi Davis of Albany against Richard Hogan of Boston, and the Uncle Sam Boxing Club’s own Tugar VanDommelen against Gianni Gragnano. In addition to the boxing, other fundraising activities at the event included a raffle and a silent auction.
At time of writing, event organizer Dave Wojcicki estimates that the event raised around $15,000 for the Bob Miller Fund. When asked if the city center would possibly work with Bob Miller and company in the future, McMahon was optimistic.
“We would love to,” McMahon said. “Bob is a long standing client and fixture in Saratoga Springs boxing.”
Anyone interested in donating to the Bob Miller Fund can find the campaign’s page at www.gofundme.com/bob-miller-fund-2unsxys.
All photos in this story are by PhotoAndGraphic.com.
The Great Outdoors!
Farmers’ Market Moves To High Rock Park Saturday
SARATOGA SPRINGS – It’s a sure sign that warmer weather is upon us when the Saratoga Farmers Market opens its outdoor summer market at the pavilions in High Rock Park. This Saturday, May 2, marks the opening day of the outdoor season, and will kick off with a short opening ceremony and ribbon cutting by Saratoga Springs Mayor, Joanne Yepsen and Saratoga Farmers’ Market Board President Phyllis Underwood at 8:45a.m. This will be followed by a day of fun family activities including live music, face painting and balloon twisting, and, of course, a wide variety of fresh, local products.
The pavilions at High Rock Park provide a truly unique outdoor shopping experience, with an expansive selection that only a summer farmers’ market can offer. All of the products sold at the Saratoga Farmers’ Market (with the exception of coffee) are locally grown, raised and produced. Seventy percent of these offerings are agricultural. Because of this, many locals have been anticipating the opening of the outdoor summer market for weeks.
The popularity of the Saratoga Farmers’ Market has grown tremendously throughout its 38 years of operation in the Spa City. This year, the outdoor summer market will feature roughly 60 farms and vendors with a wide array of produce, meats, eggs, artisanal cheeses, honey, beer, wine, spirits, ready-to-eat gourmet specialties, plants and crafts all produced in greater Saratoga County and the surrounding region.
Several new vendors are joining the Saratoga Farmers Market this season, bringing an even more diverse selection to the summer market. These new vendors include: Argyle Brewing Company, Lake George Distilling Company, Old World Farm, Owl Wood Farm, Pleasant Knob Farm, Springbrook Hollow Farm Distillery, Northern Star Vineyards, Blind Buck Farm and Naga Bakehouse.
Market Administrator Kara Scieszka always welcomes the outdoor market with enthusiasm. “We’re really excited for the outdoor season to begin!” she said. “We love returning to the pavilions at High Rock Park and to be outside in the fresh air! We are thrilled about the new vendors joining us this season and the quality and diversity their products will bring to our Market. We are also pleased to be collaborating with several local businesses and non-profits to offer workshops, and having a variety of children’s activities throughout the outdoor season.”
The ambiance at High Rock Pavilions is perfect for a Farmers’ Market. There is so much more room for everything: vendors, shoppers, music, children’s activities and of course socializing. More room means that it’s bigger, both with more products and more diversity of product. In addition to a great selection and shopping experience, the Saratoga Farmers’ Market at High Rock Park also offers a Market Café, which is a designated tent filled with a variety of prepared foods, picnic tables and performances by acoustic musicians—a perfect spot for families to sit, eat, relax and enjoy the nicer weather.
OTHER MARKET HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE:
Music – At every market, local musicians add ambiance and melodic flair, ranging from folk and bluegrass to harpists and drumming ensembles. This year the Market is offering two music venues: A Main Tent and an Acoustic Tent on the North Lawn.
Non-Profits and Businesses – Local non-profit organizations and businesses will periodically be at the market to display information and/or provide fun children’s activities throughout the season.
If you are interested in performing or having your organization at the market, contact the market coordinator. Visit saratogafarmersmarket.org/contact.
“Veggie Valet” – Friends of the Market, a dedicated group of market volunteers, provides a free “wagon valet” service every Saturday from 9 a.m. -1 p.m. to help market shoppers bring their bags and packages to their parked vehicles.
The Market Accepts Food Stamps and other Assistance Programs –
WIC Farmers’ Market vouchers are available through Saratoga County Economic Opportunity Council at (518) 288-3232. For eligible senior citizens seeking fruit and vegetable Vouchers, contact the Saratoga County Office for the Aging at (518) 884-4100.
HOURS OF OPERATION:
The Saratoga Farmers’ Market and its affiliated outdoor markets in Malta and Clifton Park will have the following hours of operation until the end of October:
Saratoga Farmers’ Market:
Twice a week beginning May 2 – Saturdays from 9 a.m. - 1p.m. and Wednesdays from 3 - 6 p.m. at High Rock Park
Malta Farmers’ Market:
Tuesdays from 3 - 6 p.m. beginning June 2, in the Allerdice ACE Hardware parking lot at 2570 Route 9, just south of the Malta Community Center.
Clifton Park Farmers’ Market:
Thursdays from 2 - 5 p.m. beginning July 2, in the parking lot of St. George’s Church, 912 Route 146, near the intersection of Moe Road.
For more information, visit saratogafarmersmarket.org. The market also has pages on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
City Centennial Events Revealed
SARATOGA SPRINGS – You don’t turn 100 years old every day, or every year in fact – and so when you do, you put together a comprehensive celebration that reflects that milestone.
That is the short course on the big plans that were detailed by Mayor Joanne Yepsen and the Saratoga Springs Centennial Committee at City Hall on Tuesday, Jan. 20. Indeed, there is not one aspect of city life – be it history, arts, sports and health, among many others – that will not be touched upon in the course of 2015.
“We have so many exciting events and projects lined up,” the mayor said. “In true Saratoga Springs style, our centennial is going to be a one-of-a-kind celebration.”
While the basic framework of events and projects was announced today, it is reasonable to think that there will be significant additions as the centennial year gathers momentum. Expect the Centennial logo (designed by Fingerpaint Marketing) to be as ubiquitous as the Saratoga 150 logo a few years ago – except in more places and for a longer period of time.
As the schedule grows through the year, a website (www.SaratogaCentennial.com) will be updated.
The committee membership itself draws from every facet of the community. The honorary chairs are Marylou Whitney and John Hendrickson. On Tuesday, Mayor Yepsen was joined by planning committee co-chair Eleanor Mullaney and several sub-committee chairs and members in detailing plans for this year.
For now, these are just a few of the 2015 highlighted Centennial events. In fact, the celebration kicked off on New Years Day, with a reading of a proclamation by Mayor Yepsen:
- On April 7 there will be a Celebration of Saratoga Springs’ exact date of incorporation as a city by New York State in 1915
- June 1 is the scheduled unveiling of Centennial Park, at Congress Park and Union Avenue, which was gifted by Marylou Whitney and John Hendrickson
- June 26 is the Rededication of Spirit of Life statue’s restoration – the iconic symbol of the Centennial logo will have its unveiling in Congress Park
Mayor Yepsen also took note that sometime in the fall there will be a significant event when the High Rock Spring, the founding location of the city and the site illustrated on the city’s seal, will be re-piped and flowing again, thanks to a grant from the Alfred Solomon Foundation.
“In addition to the many events around the city, we're honored and excited to present such a diverse list of unique centennial projects,” said Mullaney, “from the History of Saratoga Centennial book, with contributions from 25 authors, to the planting of legacy centennial trees around the city.”
A few pieces of commemorative merchandise were also revealed, including t-shirts and 14K gold pendants, which will be on sale at Impressions and N. Fox Jewelers.
If there is one sure bet, it is that you can expect frequent updates and augmentations to this story. The mayor, centennial committee members and the citizenry of Saratoga Springs wouldn’t have it any other way in its hundredth year.
For more information, visit SaratogaCentennial.com
Saratoga Farmers’ Market Opens Outdoor Season in High Rock Park
Market seeking vendors of ready-to-eat food for new hospitality tent to open in June
SARATOGA SPRINGS – When Saratoga Farmers’ Market re-opens its outdoor market at High Rock Park during the first week of May, it will feature 50 farms and vendors with a wide array of food, plants, and crafts produced in the region. The first market session will be Wednesday, May 1st, with a ribbon-cutting planned for Saturday, May 4th at 9 a.m. The market, which was voted New York State’s “Favorite Farmers’ Market” in both 2011 and 2012, is now marking its 35th anniversary year.