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Donor pays $10K for customer layaways
Donor pays $10K for customer layaways

WATKINS GLEN--A lady who wants to remain anonymous, recently stopped in the Watkins Glen Walmart store and donated $10,000 to pay off some lucky customers' layaway accounts. Walmart Manager Kyle Nickerson said the anonymous donor, whom he referred to as Mary Jane, only had two conditions for her donation. "The first was that she remain anonymous, but the second was that we reach out to local press to let them know about the donation with the hope other people capable would do the same," Nickerson said.

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StarShine set for Saturday evening
StarShine set for Saturday evening

PENN YAN--The annual Christmas celebration in Penn Yan, StarShine, will move to a new day this year, Saturday, Dec. 7. Events will run from 4 to 7 p.m. including the crowning of Miss Penn Yan for 2020. Main Street will be closed to traffic at 3 p.m. as many of the street vendors begin to set up. The evening will include a variety of music, entertainment, colorful lights, treats, historic displays, an elf school, special sales, the arrival of Santa and Mrs. Claus.

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Yates Christmas program will serve hundreds
Yates Christmas program will serve hundreds

PENN YAN-- Starting this week the Yates Christmas Program began distributing toys, clothes, bedding and food to local families in need. Helping families for decades, Executive Director Donna Johnston said that Yates Christmas has become an indelible part of the local community. "Our program is a vital part of this community, it started with a program called Toy Shop started by three local women and we are 100 percent volunteer based, no one receives any salary for the work they do. We know for sure we are at least 30 years old, and last year we served 709 children representing over 300 families," Johnston said.

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Planning meeting set for Yates
Planning meeting set for Yates

PENN YAN--Yates County Planning will meet Thursday, Dec. 12 for the third of three public workshops to develop an update for the county's comprehensive plan. County Planner Daniel Long said the December workshop will focus on the ag community's farms and related businesses. The meeting will be held in the Yates County Auditorium, 417 Liberty St. in Penn Yan at 6 p.m.

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Social security offices will expand hours
Social security offices will expand hours

FINGER LAKES--In a move to improve customer service, Social Security offices throughout the area will expand their hours and increase the number of employees for direct service to the public. Area Social Security offices are located in Corning, Ithaca, Geneva, Rochester, West Seneca and Horseheads. Starting Jan. 8, 2020, Social Security offices nationwide will be open to the public Wednesday afternoons. This change restores Wednesday public service hours that were last in place in late 2012.

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Seneca Santa gets ready to deliver again
Seneca Santa gets ready to deliver again

SCHUYLER COUNTY--In preparation for helping those in need during the holiday season, members of the local non-profit Seneca Santa are gearing up to both raise money and distribute gifts across the county. "Nobody wants to think of a child not having a Christmas. And there is a need for it, people should understand our program is not intended to be a supplement for Christmas, for some kids this is it," said Peggy Scott, president of Seneca Santa.

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Yates approves budget, with some add-ons
Yates approves budget, with some add-ons

YATES COUNTY--The Yates County legislature approved the budget for 2020 at a special meeting Thursday, Nov. 21 in the legislative chambers. The budget includes a tax levy of $16,519,672 or $5.99 per thousand of assessed property value. The budget is below the state tax cap. There were three budget modifications at the meeting and additional resolutions allowing the creation and hiring of new employees. The modifications were covered by the fund balance so no change was made to the tax levy.

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Village looks at $16M for water upgrades
Village looks at $16M for water upgrades

WATKINS GLEN--In order to bring the water system up to code, the engineering firm hired by the village of Watkins Glen recommended up to $16 million in infrastructure upgrades to the board of trustees at the Tuesday, Nov. 19 board meeting. The study was commissioned by the village after consistent warnings from the state Department of Health regarding monitoring, water turbidity, chlorination, the presence of zebra mussels and additional issues regarding the water system.

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Odessa mayor offers village water updates
Odessa mayor offers village water updates

ODESSA--Mayor Gerry Messmer recently met with United States Department of Agriculture officials to begin the process of applying for a grant to determine the source of the village's brown water. Messmer said that the grant would be for $40,000 and, if received, would be used to commission an engineering study to determine the exact source of the iron contamination of the water.

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State awards $283K for water quality
State awards $283K for water quality

ALBANY--Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Thursday, Nov. 19, $283.060 has been awarded for the region to support agricultural water quality conservation projects. The Finger Lakes area grant includes: $283,060 was awarded to the Yates County Soil and Water Conservation District to work with 10 farms in the Keuka Lake Watershed.

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Small biz Saturday promotions increase
Small biz Saturday promotions increase

TRI-COUNTY AREA--Shop small--shop local. Small Business Saturday is now a nationwide retail event. Started back in 2010 by American Express as a way to promote their thousands of small business customers, area chambers of commerce and individual stores have turned the day into a special shopping day for many.

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Tick season goes beyond October
Tick season goes beyond October

FINGER LAKES--Tick season officially begins in the Northeast in April, running through October. The official wisdom from several years back has been amended--at this point in time, every season of the year can be tick season. Even winter. Ticks are less active in below-freezing weather, but they are more likely to take shelter than die off in great numbers as our winters become warmer.

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Referee issue may affect basketball season
Referee issue may affect basketball season

DUNDEE--Dundee Central School District Superintendent Kelly Houck announced during the Thursday, Nov. 14 school board meeting that referee issues may impact the boys varsity basketball season for every school district in Section V, which includes Yates County. Houck said that she has already been advised by section officials to at least expect a delay to the season. "Be prepared for a very long delay for the season and maybe no season at all," Houck told the school board. Houck said that referees, who are all members of the Rochester District Basketball Officials Board 60, which is in turn a member of the International Association of Approved Basketball Officials, Inc., have refused to provide their availability to games for this season with the beginning only two weeks away.

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State audit prompts school questions
State audit prompts school questions

WATKINS GLEN--The state comptroller conducted a financial audit of the Watkins Glen Central School District for the period of July 1, 2015 to Feb. 27, 2019. During the audit period, the school district was under the leadership of Superintendent Tom Phillips until October 2017 when he was replaced by current superintendent, Greg Kelahan.

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Gillibrand announces legislation for fewer toxins
Gillibrand announces legislation for fewer toxins

WASHINGTON, DC--U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) announced new legislation Tuesday, Nov. 12 to stop manufacturers and other polluters from contaminating New York waterways with toxic levels of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). There is currently no limit to how many PFAS polluters can release into the environment. This also places the burden of costly clean-up efforts after contamination has occurred on the communities themselves, rather than on the companies responsible for the contamination.

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Proposal allows an arrest from an annoyance
Proposal allows an arrest from an annoyance

ALBANY (AP)--People who annoy an officer in Monroe County could find themselves facing jail time under a measure recently approved by the county legislature.
Under the Monroe County proposal, a person who annoys, alarms or threatens the personal safety of an officer could be punished with up to a year behind bars and up to a $5,000 fine.

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Cider is all about personal taste
Cider is all about personal taste

FINGER LAKES--The region's interest in hard cider and the apple varieties that, like grape varietals, make it distinctive, has spurred new interest in orchards grown for cider rather than for lunchboxes, applesauce and pies. Even though a "cider apple" could be any apple that ends in a cider, many common apples are not what professional cidermakers want. Cider apples typically have high levels of acid, tannin or sugar which makes them favorable for fermenting into cider.

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Hunting season opens Saturday
Hunting season opens Saturday

FINGER LAKES -- The regular firearms season for white-tail deer begins Saturday, Nov. 16. Hunter safety is essential for a successful season. Officials from the Finger Lakes National Forest and the Department of Environmental Conservation offer the following safety tips for hunters to enjoy the season without accidents.

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SPORTS
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 12-4-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 12-4-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Dundee, Penn Yan and Watkins Glen. These results appeared in the Dec. 4 newspapers.

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Dundee varsity sports schedule
Dundee varsity sports schedule

DUNDEE--Listed is Dundee's winter sports schedule:

Boys basketball
Dec. 3 ... Avoca, 7 p.m.
Dec. 4 ... @ Hammondsport, 7:15 p.m.

Girls basketball
Dec. 2 ... Campbell-Savona, 6:30 p.m.
Dec. 3 ... @ Twin Tiers Christian Academy, 5:30 p.m.

Bowling
Dec. 3 ... Naples, 4 p.m.
Dec. 5 ... Newark, 4:30 p.m.

Wrestling
Dec. 7 ... @ Avoca Duals, 9 a.m.
Dec. 12 ... South Seneca, 6:30 p.m.

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Hammondsport sports schedule
Hammondsport sports schedule

HAMMONDSPORT --Listed is Hammondsport's winter sports schedule for the coming week:

Boys basketball
Dec. 2 ... @ Romulus, 7 p.m.
Dec. 4 ... Dundee, 7:15 p.m.

Girls basketball
(Hammondsport/Bradford)
Dec. 2 ... Romulus, 7:15 p.m.
Dec. 6 ... @ Scio, 6 p.m.

Wrestling
(Avoca/Hammondsport)
Dec. 5... @ Jasper-Troupsburg, 6:15 p.m.
Dec. 7 ... @ Avoca Duals, 9 a.m.

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Watkins Glen varsity sports schedule
Watkins Glen varsity sports schedule

WATKINS GLEN--Listed is Watkins' winter schedule for the coming week:

Boys basketball
Dec. 3 ... Dryden, 7:15 p.m.
Dec. 6 ... @ Lansing, 7 p.m.

Girls basketball
Dec. 3 ... @ Dryden, 7 p.m.
Dec. 6 ... Lansing, 7:30 p.m.

Bowling
Dec. 2 ... @ Union Springs, 3:30 p.m.
Dec. 5 ... Lansing, 3:30 p.m.

Boys swimming
Dec. 3 ... Odessa-Montour, 4:30 p.m.
Dec. 5 ... Lansing, 4:30 p.m.

Indoor track
Dec. 14 ... @ Ithaca Bombers Invite, 9 a.m.
Dec. 21 ... @ Quinney Invite, 9 a.m.

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Odessa-Montour varsity sports schedule
Odessa-Montour varsity sports schedule

ODESSA--Listed is Odessa-Montour's winter sports schedule for the coming week:

Boys basketball
Dec. 6 ... @ Southern Cayuga, 7 p.m.
Dec. 10 ... @ Spencer-Van Etten, 7:30 p.m.

Girls basketball
Dec. 3 ... @ Tioga, 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 6 ... Southern Cayuga, 7:30 p.m.

Bowling
Dec. 3 ... Groton, 4 p.m.
Dec. 5 ... @ Tioga, 3:30 p.m.

Boys swimming
Dec. 3 ... @ Watkins Glen, 4:30 p.m.
Dec. 6 ... Greene, 5:30 p.m.

Wrestling
Dec. 4 ... @ Lansing 6 p.m.
Dec. 11 ... Moravia, 6:30 p.m.

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Penn Yan varsity sports schedule
Penn Yan varsity sports schedule

PENN YAN--Listed is Penn Yan's winter sports schedule for the coming week:

Boys basketball
Dec. 2 ... @ Haverling, 7 p.m.
Dec. 5 ... Rochester Prep, 6:30 p.m.

Girls basketball
Dec. 3 ... @ Pittsford Sutherland, 7:15 p.m.
Dec. 6 ... Marcus Whitman, 7:30 p.m.

Wrestling
(Penn Yan/Marcus Whitman)
Dec. 5 ... @ Palmyra-Macedon, 6:30 p.m.
Dec. 7 ... @ Avoca Duals, 9 a.m.

Bowling
Dec. 5 ... @ Naples, 4:30 p.m.
Dec. 9 ... @ Geneva, 4:30 p.m.

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SPORTS RECAP: Week of 11-20-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 11-20-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Penn Yan, Hammondsport and Watkins Glen . These results appeared in the Nov. 20 newspapers.

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SPORTS RECAP: Week of 11-13-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 11-13-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Hammondsport, Penn Yan, Watkins Glen and Odessa-Montour. These results appeared in the Nov. 13 newspapers.

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SPORTS RECAP: Week of 11-6-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 11-6-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Hammondsport, Penn Yan, Dundee, Watkins Glen and Odessa-Montour. These results appeared in the Nov. 6 newspapers.

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SPORTS RECAP: Week of 10-30-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 10-30-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Penn Yan, Dundee, Hammondsport, Watkins Glen and Odessa-Montour. These results appeared in the Oct. 30 newspapers.

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SPORTS RECAP: Week of 10-23-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 10-23-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Penn Yan, Dundee, Odessa-Montour, Watkins Glen and Hammondsport. These results appeared in the Oct. 23 newspapers.

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SPORTS RECAP: Week of 10-16-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 10-16-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Watkins Glen, Odessa-Montour, Penn Yan, Dundee and Hammondsport. These results appeared in the Oct. 16 newspapers.

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SPORTS RECAP: Week of 10-9-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 10-9-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Hammondsport, Dundee, Penn Yan, Odessa-Montour and Watkins Glen. These results appeared in the Oct. 9 newspapers.

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SPORTS RECAP: Week of 10-2-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 10-2-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Penn Yan, Dundee, Hammondsport, Odessa-Montour and Watkins Glen. These results appeared in the Oct. 2 newspapers.

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SPORTS RECAP: Week of 9-25-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 9-25-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Dundee, Penn Yan, Hammondsport, Watkins Glen and Odessa-Montour. These results appeared in the Sept. 25 newspapers.

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SPORTS RECAP: Week of 9-18-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 9-18-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Odessa-Montour, Watkins Glen, Dundee, Penn Yan and Hammondsport. These results appeared in the Sept. 18 newspapers.

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SPORTS RECAP: Week of 9-11-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 9-11-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Penn Yan, Dundee, Hammondsport, Watkins Glen and Odessa-Montour. These results appeared in the Sept. 11 newspapers.

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SPORTS RECAP: Week of 9-4-19
SPORTS RECAP: Week of 9-4-19

FINGER LAKES--Please click the 'Read More...' link to see the weekly sports results for Dundee, Penn Yan, and Hammondsport. These results appeared in the Sept. 4 newspaper.

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