Germantown residents straighten up riverside park

On May 6, the 26th annual Germantown Riverkeeper Sweep was held to clean up the Hudson River shoreline in the roughly 2-mile distance from Lasher Park in North Germantown to Cheviot Landing. Volunteers gathered at the park and dispersed to sections of the riverfront to pick up garbage, assisted by trucks and workers from the Germantown Highway Department. Germantown maintains the land between the CSX tracks and the shoreline as park. According to Martin Overington, who was commanding the detail, the first clean-up events were organized by Scenic Hudson and then 10 years ago Riverkeeper took up the task. Found along the shoreline were tires, a defunct gas grill, a spent fireworks mortar array, seatless chairs and general garbage. Pictured are Germantown Teachers Association volunteers as they patrolled the edge of the road along the CSX tracks. Photo by David Lee

Hudson Boat Association hosts state Naval Militia

The patrol boat formation looked sharp as it passed under the Rip Van Winkle Bridge on Saturday afternoon, April 29. Photo by David Lee

Flanked by MEBS commander Captain Donald McNight (far l) and Admiral Lawrence Weill (far r) representatives of the Hudson-Athens Lighthouse Preservation Society hold the certificate of appreciation presented to them. They are board member Van Calhoun and society President Kristin Gamble. Photo by David Lee

HUDSON – On the weekend of April 28 to 30, the Hudson Power Boat Association was the host for a flotilla of 11 specialized boats, the entire fleet of the New York State Naval Militia’s Military Boat Service. This was the “kick-off” weekend for the service whose boats are stored in the armory of Leeds during the winter. The boats arrived on Friday afternoon and the approximately 50 militia members, who had gathered from around the state, spent the weekend reviewing procedures and qualifications, and on Saturday afternoon, piloting their boats, first in formation and then individually up and down the river.At the conclusion of Saturday morning’s desk presentations in the power boat’s dock house, special certificates of appreciation were presented to representatives of the Hudson Power Boat Association and to the Hudson-Athens Lighthouse Preservation Society by NYNM Commander Rear Admiral Lawrence Weill. In the meeting it was announced that the Hudson Power Boat Association, which provides docking for the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, the Greenport Rescue Squad, the Hudson Fire Department, and works in partnership with the Hudson-Athens Lighthouse Preservation Society, will also be home port for one of the Naval Militia boats.
According to Admiral Weill, these boats will disperse to seasonal docks from Buffalo to New York City and Long Island Sound.

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Voters favor school budgets

GHENT — In all six school districts in the county, registered voters liked what they saw and gave large margins of support to annual school district spending.

Voters in some districts adopted propositions to purchase items such as school buses or fund capital improvements. Those choices too won easily.

The districts also held school board elections. The top voter-getters in districts with a races won seats on the board.

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Retired Sergeant York celebrates his 32nd birthday

Equine Advocates President Susan Wagner held the lead as the well-wishers looked in. Photo by David Lee

CHATHAM – A birthday was celebrated at Equine Advocates Rescue and Sanctuary on Route 66. It was for the renowned caisson horse named Sergeant York, a veteran of many ceremonial occasions including the funeral procession of President Ronald Reagan in which he acted as the traditional riderless horse.

He is a healthy 32 years old. Sergeant York retired to Equine Advocates last year and has been a featured celebrity since. Being a veteran of the United States Army, Sergeant York has become one of the concerns of the Columbia County Veterans Service Agency Director Gary Flaherty who brought a busload of veterans to the rescue sanctuary for a little party.

The occasion included all of the usual party trappings including balloons, a carrot cake and a singing of the birthday song. Dignitaries in attendance included Destiny Hallenbeck from the office of New York State Senator Michelle Hinchey (D-41th) who presented a certificate of recognition “with gratitude for your service,” and Gunnar Wordon from the office of Assemblymember Didi Barrett (D-106th). Both lawmakers were in Albany working on a late state budget.