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Monday, 27 June 2016 16:42

Getting Down with the Count

SARATOGA SPRINGS – It was July 3, 1982. I had moved to Saratoga a year before, became a SPAC member that summer. When it came time to buy tickets for the 1982 programs – there was no doubt where I wanted to be. I was always a ‘front row balcony’ guy – I always requested, and usually got that location. Recently, they wised up and made that seating area premium boxes. Smart move. I still think it’s the best spot for both listening and viewing. No one could stand up in the way and block your view. Particularly when you are trying to see a legend. For me, Count Basie and his Orchestra had a special meaning. As a very young boy, New Years Eve was the night I got to be an ‘adult’ and stay up late. And every New Years, that meant watching the ball drop and the Count swing – on my B/W TV – Channel 9 in New York City. Broadcasting live from the Rainbow Room in Rockefeller Center. It looked smoky – and super swanky. That was the Count. And now I would be seeing him live. These were the days when it was known as the Kool Jazz Festival for the record, and it was a jazz purist’s lineup. Barely any R&B or pop. Just the best in the biz at the top of their game. Consider just a few of the names that performed during that 2-day affair (July 3 and 4): - Ella Fitzgerald - Spyro Gyra - The Buddy Rich Orchestra - Ray Brown - Maynard Ferguson and his Orchestra - Oscar Peterson Legends and Hall-of-Famers all. But only one member of Royalty for me. Though I had my reserved front-row balcony seat, most of the daytime was spent out on the lawn. I don’t remember if they even had a gazebo stage then, but something tells me no. From that lawn standpoint on that July 3 afternoon, I remember being particularly impressed with Oscar Peterson and his small trio or quartet. I guess I’m a piano guy. “O.P.” delivered a fast paced, precise set – flying over the 88 keys with elegance. I recall hearing that Oscar wasn’t too thrilled with his afternoon placement on that day, yet he stood and bowed after each number, asked his band-mates to do the same, and sat back down and really ripped it up to the wild applause of the audience. Bravo. New fan, right here. But when the sun went down – I was in my seat. Like the name of one of the Count’s many hit songs – it was “Meetin’ Time.” And I was ready. I had to refer to a Library of Congress playlist of the Count’s set - it has been awhile. But for me, music in whatever form has always been about absorbing the qualitative – I can barely read music, don’t really play an instrument. So here’s what I remember, in addition to my jaw dropping – often. Like many big bands, the Orchestra starts out with a few numbers, without the leader, to get the party started. The third song – April in Paris – was a particular standout in this early segment. A couple of other numbers. And then… from stage right – there he was! As befitting royalty, the Count, age 77 that day, was being rolled to his piano by two fine maidens – maybe his granddaughters? Not sure, but they looked elegant and beautiful. It took a bit of time to make the trip – The Count’s appearance brought about the thunderclap roar and Standing O you might expect, and he took a moment to soak it in and acknowledge the subjects of his kingdom. But there was something else. On the journey across the SPAC stage, the Count had his hands at keyboard level – his fingers playing along with the band. The song, I believe was Bootsie’s Blues – and as he was getting closer, he looked at that piano with a “let me at ‘em” look – mock threatening to bolt the wheelchair. Five feet away now – maybe. And the maidens let him glide the rest of the way… The Count picked up the song in mid-measure – and they didn’t stop until he said so – with their trademark encore – Jumpin’ at the Woodside. Side note: that song was given a whole new generation of fans due to it’s usage on, of all things, The Gong Show – where it presaged the arrival of “Gene, Gene the Dancing Machine.” Ask your father. But for me, the Count’s set – 1 hour, 3 minutes and 21 seconds according to the Library, was transformative. It changed my life on several levels: - I became a jazz fan on that day. Yes, I still loved my rock, etc., but from that day forward – jazz was king. - It led to a (volunteer) radio career of 10+ years; broadcasting a show on Skidmore’s WSPN on Saturday afternoons – a mix of Jazz and R&B – following the modern Jazz Festival formula. And every show - every one – signed off with me saying thanks and goodbye with “Jumpin” in the background. - Most of all, it was the greatest musical day of my life. And it happened at SPAC. Coming July 8: Official 50th Anniversary with Alvin Ailey/ SPAC Behind the Scenes (at a high level) / and ‘The Photo of Her Life’

ROCK CITY FALLS–  Seth Sikes  of whom NY Arts Review said, “may well be one of the saviors of the Great American Songbook” will make his 801 Supper Club at The Mansion at Inn debut on Thursday, June 23, for one performance only in his critically acclaimed show Seth Sikes Sings Liza Minnelli & Friends, an evening of Minnelli’s most popular songs. 

Hailed as “the best male singer of his generation on the cabaret scene” by Theatre Scene, Sikes will perform many of the show-stopping standards for which Liza is known along with some lesser known gems. Tickets for Seth Sikes are $60 and are available now by calling 518-885-1607 or visiting themansionsaratoga.com/supper-club/

 

Seth Sikes is one of New York’s best known nightclub performers and each of his appearances at Feinstein’s/54 Below in New York have sold out.  His previous show, which paid tribute to Judy Garland, was named Best Tribute Show by BroadwayWorld and Rex Reed said, “Sikes belted out small gems and big treasures alike to a sold-out house screaming for more. He’s already developing a fan base and there’s no telling how far Seth Sikes will go.”

 

Seth Sikes Sings Liza Minnelli & Friends debuted in March and garnered critical acclaim across the board. Theater Pizzazz said, “Sikes is not a Liza imitator and didn’t channel her persona, he just very ably performed the music that has made us love Liza all these years.”

Liz Smith said, “The place was packed and the crowd went wild.  Just like, well — a Liza Minnelli concert!”

Nitelife Exchange said, “He somehow makes everything work together in the moment to create a magically compelling evening of entertainment.”

The evening was conceived by Sikes and Tony-Award winning Lyricist Lisa Lambert and will feature orchestrations by Matt Aument, Neil Douglas Reilly and Jesse Vargas.

 

Before becoming one of New York’s most talked-about performers Sikes worked in the theater behind the scenes. He was the Assistant Director of The Nance on Broadway (starring Nathan Lane and directed by Jack O'Brien), and of the Off-Broadway productions of Tribes (directed by David Cromer) and Pageant.  His other Assistant Director credits include Sondheim: The Birthday Concert (directed by Lonny Price), and Sweet Bird of Youth (directed by David Cromer and starring Diane Lane). 

 

He directed the original musical Bunked!, which won Outstanding Musical at the New York International Fringe Festival in 2010, as well as The 7th Annual Broadway Beauty Pageant.  As a performer, Sikes performed in Fame on 42nd Street Off-Broadway.   

 

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Plain and simple: If I were going to pick one event to show a newcomer what downtown Saratoga Springs entertainment is all about, it would be Gaffney’s Garden Party. A Father’s Day tradition, its 34th renewal will be this Sunday, June 19, beginning at 1 p.m. For one thing, that newcomer would have a chance to meet a good cross-section of our citizenry, who all will be there. That includes a tremendous percentage of the hospitality industry from other places in town, who watch the clock until they can get off-shift, and join their erstwhile customers, and probably the owners of the businesses they work for as well – who are already there, in the Garden. And that’s the thing. No one spends an extra dime counter-programming against Gaffney’s on this day. It would be a futile waste of time and cash. That’s what a tradition is, and the people reinforce it each year on Father’s day. Gaffney’s great people may be too humble and grateful to say it – so I will. Yes, other places are open – but this is Gaffney’s day. Feel free to take issue with me if you like. You’ll know where to find me on Sunday afternoon. “It never gets old,” said General Manager Kim Smith, with her trademark laugh, spiced up with a giggle or two. Kim, who has been at Gaffney’s for 29 years, starting as a Hostess, continued, “You think it would – after all this time and with everything else we have going on around here year-round. But it doesn’t – as soon as we open the Garden, which we do as soon as the weather allows, our guests start talking Garden Party. They get the staff revved up, which gets us all going. Each year, we are motivated to make it the best one ever. Whether (Sunday) will be your first Garden Party, or your 34th, our goal is to make it the best one ever for you.” This year is no exception: The formula for a successful Gaffney’s experience has always been a combination of faithfulness to what traditionally works, while reaching out and incorporating new, up and coming stars into its “family.” The party starts at 1 p.m., with all the drink and food specials you would expect. Then, at 2 p.m. traditional favorite Rich Ortiz will be back. He tees up the day with a mellow vibe – not that people won’t be feeling it and dancing, but Rich – a consummate pro, knows when to bring things to a boil, and when to let it simmer. He will provide the quintessential soundtrack for a Sunday summer afternoon. Then at 5 p.m. – surf’s up with Big Fez and the Surfmatics, and don’t be surprised if all hell breaks loose! Google their pic, and you’ll get the idea. About 6 p.m., people will start thinking of excuses to call in late to work the next day. But chances are, you can surf right over to your boss on the other side of the garden and let him/her know. It’s that kind of day. So many people connected with this event want to share their thoughts, it’s easy to get quotes: “The Garden Party has always been a Gaffney’s “family” event,” says Bartender/Manager Deena Lavigne. “In this case, the family includes customers, staff and everyone’s family.” “Enjoying time as a family. Parents, children and myself. The Garden party at Gaffney's brings back many, many happy memories!” Trish Marsh, a server mid to late 80s and early 90s, said. “This is a must,” said long-time Gaffney’s Bookkeeper Mary Ann Hannon, “You know summer is officially here when Gaffney’s has their Garden Party!” One big happy family. Which sometimes grows, just like a garden, in intriguing and wonderful ways. Case in point: Chef Kevin Myers, whose cuisine is a major reason why Gaffney’s is their “go-to” place, chooses to spotlight entertainment “… for me, it’s the great talent that has played here over the past 34 years.” And former server Jen Poitras, who noted, “My customers always called the Garden Party ‘Fun Family Date Day.’” Well, fast forward some years, and now Jen Poitras is known as Jen Poitras Myers. You do the math. I guess she liked his cooking! And that’s how they roll. Amazingly, as busy as it always is, they always seem to make room for you. We leave it to the man who started the party, 34 years ago, to tie it all together: “It’s always been the kick off party to the summer season,” said Gaffney’s Owner John Baker, “We are gratified that people have regarded it as a tradition from the very beginning. I attribute the success of it because it started with a simple, but important idea: honoring my father, and everyone’s father, on Father’s Day. On Sunday, we'll see people who came as children with their parents, now coming back with kids of their own. For me, that’s the best part – a combination of a generational rite of passage, blended with the annual passage into summertime.” If you are going to visit Gaffney’s once in your life – this Sunday should be the day. Fair warning, though – the experience tends to be habit-forming! For more information about everything, visit GaffneysRestaurant.com
SARATOGA SPRINGS — Plain and simple: If I were going to pick one event to show a newcomer what downtown Saratoga Springs entertainment is all about, it would be Gaffney’s Garden Party. A Father’s Day tradition, its 34th renewal will be this Sunday, June 19, beginning at 1 p.m. For one thing, that newcomer would have a chance to meet a good cross-section of our citizenry, who all will be there. That includes a tremendous percentage of the hospitality industry from other places in town, who watch the clock until they can get off-shift, and join their erstwhile customers, and probably the owners of the businesses they work for as well – who are already there, in the Garden. And that’s the thing. No one spends an extra dime counter-programming against Gaffney’s on this day. It would be a futile waste of time and cash. That’s what a tradition is, and the people reinforce it each year on Father’s day. Gaffney’s great people may be too humble and grateful to say it – so I will. Yes, other places are open – but this is Gaffney’s day. Feel free to take issue with me if you like. You’ll know where to find me on Sunday afternoon. “It never gets old,” said General Manager Kim Smith, with her trademark laugh, spiced up with a giggle or two. Kim, who has been at Gaffney’s for 29 years, starting as a Hostess, continued, “You think it would – after all this time and with everything else we have going on around here year-round. But it doesn’t – as soon as we open the Garden, which we do as soon as the weather allows, our guests start talking Garden Party. They get the staff revved up, which gets us all going. Each year, we are motivated to make it the best one ever. Whether (Sunday) will be your first Garden Party, or your 34th, our goal is to make it the best one ever for you.” This year is no exception: The formula for a successful Gaffney’s experience has always been a combination of faithfulness to what traditionally works, while reaching out and incorporating new, up and coming stars into its “family.” The party starts at 1 p.m., with all the drink and food specials you would expect. Then, at 2 p.m. traditional favorite Rich Ortiz will be back. He tees up the day with a mellow vibe – not that people won’t be feeling it and dancing, but Rich – a consummate pro, knows when to bring things to a boil, and when to let it simmer. He will provide the quintessential soundtrack for a Sunday summer afternoon. Then at 5 p.m. – surf’s up with Big Fez and the Surfmatics, and don’t be surprised if all hell breaks loose! Google their pic, and you’ll get the idea. About 6 p.m., people will start thinking of excuses to call in late to work the next day. But chances are, you can surf right over to your boss on the other side of the garden and let him/her know. It’s that kind of day. So many people connected with this event want to share their thoughts, it’s easy to get quotes: “The Garden Party has always been a Gaffney’s “family” event,” says Bartender/Manager Deena Lavigne. “In this case, the family includes customers, staff and everyone’s family.” “Enjoying time as a family. Parents, children and myself. The Garden party at Gaffney's brings back many, many happy memories!” Trish Marsh, a server mid to late 80s and early 90s, said. “This is a must,” said long-time Gaffney’s Bookkeeper Mary Ann Hannon, “You know summer is officially here when Gaffney’s has their Garden Party!” One big happy family. Which sometimes grows, just like a garden, in intriguing and wonderful ways. Case in point: Chef Kevin Myers, whose cuisine is a major reason why Gaffney’s is their “go-to” place, chooses to spotlight entertainment “… for me, it’s the great talent that has played here over the past 34 years.” And former server Jen Poitras, who noted, “My customers always called the Garden Party ‘Fun Family Date Day.’” Well, fast forward some years, and now Jen Poitras is known as Jen Poitras Myers. You do the math. I guess she liked his cooking! And that’s how they roll. Amazingly, as busy as it always is, they always seem to make room for you. We leave it to the man who started the party, 34 years ago, to tie it all together: “It’s always been the kick off party to the summer season,” said Gaffney’s Owner John Baker, “We are gratified that people have regarded it as a tradition from the very beginning. I attribute the success of it because it started with a simple, but important idea: honoring my father, and everyone’s father, on Father’s Day. On Sunday, we'll see people who came as children with their parents, now coming back with kids of their own. For me, that’s the best part – a combination of a generational rite of passage, blended with the annual passage into summertime.” If you are going to visit Gaffney’s once in your life – this Sunday should be the day. Fair warning, though – the experience tends to be habit-forming! For more information about everything, visit GaffneysRestaurant.com
Friday, 10 June 2016 09:01

Coming Soon: A Big Splash in Wilton

WILTON — A scheduled check presentation by the Friends of Wilton Recreation for picnic tables and benches on Thursday, June 2 turned, wet, wild and wonderful, as it became a preview for an upcoming summer fun destination – behold, the soon to be opened Gavin Splash Park! The exact date of the grand opening is still TBA, but coming soon just in time for relief from the summer’s heat! Here are some highlights of the fun features of the new park to wet your whistle, as it were, from our friends at the Town of Wilton Recreation at Gavin Park: • The size of the splash park is 7,000 square feet! • There will be 20+ spray elements including ground sprays, water cannons and water dumping buckets • A Concession stand and full handicap accessibility • Restricted to age 12 and under, and must be accompanied by an adult 18 or older (proof of age required) • 135 person maximum capacity on wet surface • This $400,000 project was built by Ashland, Ohio based Rain Drop Products LLC It is located adjacent to the Christopher Dailey Memorial Gymnasium and the Gavin Park playground • Picnic tables and benches for parents to watch children donated by Stewart’s Shops and the Friends of Wilton Recreation • Town employees will staff the facility and monitor attendance • Fees: resident fee- $2 per child (proof required), Non-residents- $5 per child. Anyone not using the wet portion of the pad will not be charged. • Hours of operation will be 11 a.m.-6:30 p.m., Monday-Sunday • Birthday Parties may be considered during special hours, but camps, schools, organizations groups will not be allowed entry due to space limitations. Oh, and you know we’ll be there when the “everybody in the pool!” word is given – for that is the epitome of what we do. - Arthur Gonick
Friday, 03 June 2016 15:08

New Owners – New Energy!

Bailey’s New Ownership Poised to Elevate Landmark to a New Level

SARATOGA SPRINGS – This is a great story. It’s a local business story, and a ‘market moving’ trend story. It’s also a hospitality story, with food/beverage and entertainment thrown into the mix. But what makes this a great story is that it is, ultimately, an American story – the type of story America should be more about. 

 

It is a story about two hard-working, highly credentialed local gents who once started as line staff, worked their way up for years, and are now getting the opportunity to take the reins of a landmark location and make it their own.  

 

Chances are, if you are at all interested any aspects of Saratoga Springs nightlife, you already know these guys. Perhaps you are one of their thousands of FB friends and/or customers. But we are a newspaper of record, so let’s make it official:

 

Meet Sam Bottini and Matt Beecher: the new co-owners of Bailey’s Café - on the landmark corner of Phila and Putnam streets. And they can’t wait to show you what they have in store to make your good times greater – just in time for summer!

 

“I’ve been scouting out these two for quite some time,” noted Joe Richardson, former sole owner (and still a partner) with Sam and Matt. Indeed, like a savvy baseball general manager who just added Derek Jeter and Clayton Kershaw to his lineup, he can’t be more excited for the season to start. “These two will bring it all: Passion, dedication, and new energy. With them on board, we’ll be able to pursue things we have wanted to do, and take Bailey’s to a new level,” Joe said. 

 

One of many cases in point: A new Sunday Brunch is already in effect. You can enjoy it this weekend from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Eggs Benedict and more, washed down with a Mimosa, or perhaps Sam’s signature Bloody Mary, or maybe Matt’s specialty Mojito or Margarita. “People have begged us for about five years to do this,” Joe Richardson stated, “and we now have the proper team in place to get it done.”

 

They certainly have the bona fides to know how to make a specialty drink special. For relatively young men, Sam and Matt have each built impressive hospitality resumes. Sam has done several jobs at Gaffney’s, starting as a service bartender and working up the ladder. He also had a stint at the prestigious Albany Country Club as a bartender, and most recently held several key positions at Putnam Den. Matt is a six-year veteran at Harvey’s and has had corporate hospitality training from international casual dining conglomerates.  

 

In other words, they know what they are doing – and how to make sure you have the best experience possible. 

 

Other signs that Bailey’s, which took the market by storm when it was first founded in 1999 and into the first years of this millennium, is poised for a big-time revival are starting to coalesce. For one thing, the outdoor patio has been glammed-up with some new furniture and general sprucing – the place just looks brand new, and that all leads to… 

 

Destination: Clam Bake

 

Check it for yourself: A perfect opportunity to meet the new owners and crew is coming on Saturday, June 18 from 1 to 5 p.m. at Bailey’s inaugural clam bake. $12 gets you a dozen clams plus potatoes and corn, but for those that like to indulge it’s 2 for 1 clams for the same price. It promises to be a festive afternoon with giveaways galore. They are still gathering some really good prizes that I’ve been sworn to secrecy about – but these are examples of what they’ve already lined up for the day:

 

- A Shipyard Brewery tour, plus a gas card from Saratoga Eagle to get you to Shipyard HQ in Portland, Maine

- A Corona CanJam game. Those in the know will want this one

- Four general admission tickets to Blue Oyster Cult at the American Music Festival – September 24 in Lake George

 

If there’s one thing I know, these gents are mighty motivated. Expect this list to grow substantially before showtime.

 

Looking ahead a bit, we find a few summer music anchors are in place as well. Bailey’s has always had the physical layout to put on well-attended performances, but it was the performing lineup that packed the place. 

 

One who will tell you, if you ask him, that Bailey’s helped to launch his career into the realm of the mega-mega and mighty, is none other than Garland Nelson, The Soulist/Visionary behind the powerhouse Soul Session, and all it has become. Write him in the music lineup for ten consecutive Thursdays, beginning in late July. So that kinda adds a Willie Mays here: a legend at the top of his game. 

 

Also, an interesting pickup is the “Dark Day Blues” franchise on Track Tuesdays, a treasured staple in many venues to date, and administered by the textbook texture and talent that comes out of George Fletcher’s Folding Money – George’s secret desire has always been to be Ichiro – and now he is.   

 

Overall, everything to report at this point from Bailey’s indicates progress is being put in motion, by a new management team that gives it a real shot to reclaim a valued nightspot on the local scene. Indeed - an opportunity to elevate it to new heights, in short order. 

 

Its no stretch to forecast that there will be a sea change in the hospitality market this summer. And that sea’s current will flow to the intersection of Phila and Putnam Streets.

 

For more information about everything, visit baileyscafe.com or call 518-583-6060.

Friday, 20 May 2016 12:17

Kara ‘Trips’ Back Home

Burnt Hills Native Returns to Northshire for Third Novel Release

 

SARATOGA SPRINGS – Kara Storti has been blessed with the gift of articulation – the ability not only to communicate – but to reach into her own soul, and touch yours. This has been evident since her high school (Burnt Hills/Ballston Lake) days, when, as a young songwriter, she dazzled audiences with her original, introspective lyrics, a sweet, yet powerful voice, and melodies that grabbed you and wouldn’t let go. 

 

It was obvious that, despite not being old enough to buy a drink at some of the places she played music (such as Gaffney’s, during songwriter nights) with her band, or solo behind the keyboard, that she could more than hold her own with seasoned veterans twice her age, maybe more. There was no doubt in anyone’s mind that saw her perform that she would be a pro – and a successful one at that. 

 

Fast forward just over a decade, and we find that Kara done just that – become a professional who has taken her craft of writing to a new level, with the publication of her third novel, Tripping Back Blue, that will have its New York release next Thursday at Northshire Bookstore. This ‘homecoming’ to her native area will include reading, Q + A, and book signing. 

 

In addition to being a novelist, Kara has applied her craft to professional outlets. After high school, she migrated to Boston (her current home), where she logged a stint at Harvard University’s office of correspondence for Harvard’s then-President Lawrence Summers, and currently does medical writing for Vortex, a pharma company that develops drugs to combat cystic fibrosis. 

 

“I love medical writing,” Kara noted, “After Lawrence Summers left/got booted at Harvard, I stayed around for a bit during the search for his successor in the Provost’s office, but I needed to get more stimulation from writing.” This came from the medical field, but more importantly from writing fiction as well. 

 

Don’t judge a book by its cover, and in the same vein, don’t let Kara’s sweet persona and her good-natured sense of humor (laced with a nice bit of deadpan sarcasm) fool you – this is gritty writing in the realism mode. In Tripping, set in the urban, mostly inner-city areas of the Capital Region, Kara writes from the perspective of Finn, a male drug dealer and his own personal struggles with addiction, and life in general. 

 

“The inspiration for this was real,” Kara said, “I was in a relationship with a guy from Burnt Hills who struggled with a drug problem. I had started to develop some of the themes of the book before I became aware about his battling these demons. Actually, the main character began as a female, sort of a female Harry Potter, who defeated dark forces with components of magic.  But once I did learn the truth about him, the words just flowed in a different direction. It turned out to be a catharsis of sorts for me.” 

 

Some brief excerpts tell the tale:

 

“All I’ve got to do is just get through this ordeal. Push through it; be a man…

 

“Stupid car. Stupid neighborhood. It’d be one thing if I lived in New York City, where there’s violence, sure, but tons of opportunity to become a better man. Not the case here. Instead I’m north of Albany, in rotten Dammer-f-ing-town, where there is no other side, where no great life is waiting for me, where the earth threw up and walked away.”

 

- From ‘Tripping Back Blue’

          By Kara Storti

          Published by Carolrhoda Books - April 1, 2016

 

I asked her if she still composed songs. “I still write them, from time to time, when I can,” she said. “I find that it is good to combat writer’s block – switching disciplines can unclog the mental log jam.” 

 

These and other tips will be shared with a Saratoga Springs High School Senior class earlier that day, while you get to enjoy the finished product of her hard work and effort later that evening. 

 

As a music programmer, Kara Storti made me look like a very discerning, smart judge of talent. You will feel the same way if you recommend her appearance next week, as an accomplished author, to friends. As big a thrill as it is to spot a young person with a gift, it’s even a bigger thrill to check in later on, and see how that ability and flair has blossomed. And that, simply, is what you have before you next Thursday.

 

Speaking of which, if you read this far, you have migrated to our PULSE section, where Rebecca Davis does a great job letting her talent blossom. I highly recommend that you read the rest of this section as long as you are here - always a nice counterpoint to the dreary news of the day. 

 

 

“An evening with author Kara Storti” will take place at Northshire Bookstore, 424 Broadway in Saratoga Springs next Thursday, May 26 at 6 p.m. Kara will be conducting a Q & A, reading and signing copies of her new novel – “Tripping Back Blue” – which is suitable for mature teens and adults.

SARATOGA SPRINGS – Though shortened by weather conditions, Saratoga Rowing Association (SRA) dominated the medal count at 2016 New York State Scholastic Rowing Association Championships on Saturday, May 14 and Sunday, May 15 on Fish Creek.

 

Some highlights:

- 20 Championship Medals in side-by-side competition

- 11 additional medals based on earlier time trials (due to weather cancelling side-by-side heats)

- 31 medals total

- SRA first-place finishes: 

- Sprint Racing: - Womens Freshmen Quad - Final 1

    - Mens Freshmen Eight - Final 1 

- Womens Varsity Pair - Final 1 

- Womens Varsity Single - Final 1 

- Womens Varsity Single - Final 2 

- Mens Varsity Single - Final 1 

- Mens Varsity Single - Final 2 

- Womens Freshmen Eight - Final 1

- Mens Freshmen Quad – Final 1

- Womens Varsity Eight - Final 1 

- Womens Lightweight Eight  - Final 1 

- Womens Juniors Four - Final 1 

- Womens 2V Eight - Final 1 

- Mens Juniors Quad - Final 1 

- Mens Lightweight. Quad - Final 1 

- Womens Varsity Quad - Final 1 

- Womens Lightweight Quad  - Final 1 

- Womens Juniors Quad - Final 1 

- Womens Juniors Double – Final 1

- Mens Lightweight Eight - Final 1  

 

- Time Trials: - Womens Freshman Quad

- Mens Freshman Eight

- Womens Jr Four

- Womens 2V Eight

- Womens Freshman Eight 

- Mens Freshman Quad

 

 

In a word – unreal.  Afterwards, SRA announced that they were sending 73 rowers who qualified at States to Nationals (SRAA National Championships) in Zanesville, Ohio next weekend, May 27 and 28.  

 

Thursday, 19 May 2016 11:09

SSHS Baseball Seniors Honored

SARATOGA SPRINGS – Senior Blue Streak baseball players, along with friends and family take the field for Senior Night at East Side Rec. on Saturday, May 14. Everyone celebrated as Saratoga romped over Schuylerville, 22-2 in their last regular season home game - closing out the season with four straight wins, and five of their last six, heading into the post-season vs. Niskayuna on Tuesday, May 17. 

 

Senior team members pictured with their families are (L to R): Jake Kerr, Brendon Frank, Nick Kondo, Cory McArthur, Danny Hobbs, Shane Barringer, Danny Coleman and Brendan Coffey. Photo by MarkBolles.com 

 

 

In that opening round contest, Saratoga, seeded sixth, was victorious over #11 Niskayuna, 5-0, and squared off versus #3 Ballston Spa on Thursday evening. 

 

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Jockey Wayne D. Wright, who won the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes in separate years and was America’s leading rider in 1934 and 1936, and the 19th century racehorse Tom Ochiltree, winner of the 1875 Preakness Stakes and numerous prestigious handicap events, have been elected to the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame by the Museum’s Historic Review Committee. 

 

Wright and Tom Ochiltree join contemporary selections Rachel Alexandra, Zenyatta, Ramon Dominguez and Steve Asmussen in the Hall of Fame Class of 2016. The Pillars of the Turf selections will be announced later this month. The induction ceremony takes place Friday, August 12 at 10:30 a.m. at the Fasig-Tipton sales pavilion. 

 

 

Along with his wins in the Triple Crown races, Wright won three races aboard Triple Crown winner War Admiral, including the Whitney Handicap and Jockey Club Gold Cup. He also won the Dwyer and Arlington Classic with Triple Crown winner Omaha. He rode a third Hall of Famer, Eight Thirty, to victory in the 1938 Flash Stakes. Wright also won the Travers Stakes (1937), Saratoga Cup (1935) and Saratoga Special (1945).

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  • COURT  Earl T. Walsh, 28, of Schuylerville, was sentenced to 1 to 3 years’ incarceration, after pleading to felony DWI.  Jack D. Smith, 33, of Mayfield, pleaded Nov. 19 to felony DWI, in Galway. Sentencing Jan. 21.  Joshua E. Greco, 31, of Gloversville, pleaded Nov. 19 to felony grand larceny, in Ballston. Sentencing Jan. 21.  Shamiek A. Shorter, 25, of Schenectady, pleaded Nov. 19 to attempted criminal possession of a weapon, a felony, in Saratoga Springs. Sentencing Jan. 24.  Erika L. Pettit, 39, of Ballston Spa, pleaded Nov. 19 to felony DWI, in Milton. Sentencing Jan. 19.  Travis C. Edmonds,…

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  • BALLSTON James Rusinko sold property at 19 Silver Lane to Linda Figueroa for $290,000. Rosetti Acquisitions LLC sold property at 32 Pasture Pl to Meagan Tumer for $351,102. Barbera Homes Kelley Farms LLC sold property at 23 Stablegate Farms to James Kochan for $567,782. Marielena Hauser as exec. sold property at 21 Garrett Lane to Mark Hauser for $200,000. Kathleen Coleman sold property at 270 Middle Line Rd to Kathleen Coleman for $197,500. Route 50 Realty LLC sold property at Route 50 to Saunders Lane LLC for $400,000. CORINTH John Collura sold property at  Eggleston St to Nicholas Burke for…
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