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SCHUYERVILLE — The Schuylerville Drama Club would like to thank everyone who participated in its 5K Ugly Sweater fundraiser run! Proceeds will go towards the drama club’s middle school production, The Wizard of Oz, which will be performed March 6 and 7. Of the 157 runners, the top finishers were Megan Vianese and Daryl Headen. Winners received a medal and a ticket to the show in March. In addition, 55 items were donated to S.A.F.E.R.

Published in Sports
Thursday, 16 May 2019 13:56

Kathy's Comeback

Photos provided.

SARATOGA SPRINGS — A year after nearly losing her life to a rare cardiac condition, Saratoga Springs resident Kathy Yasenchak will run her fifteenth Freihofer 5K run. 
Kathy Yasenchak, 72, was in tip-top shape; a healthy active runner who kicked off her summer completing the annual Freihofer’s Run for Women 5K, in Albany. Just a short five days later, Yasenchak was overcome with unusual pain in the middle of the night. 
“It was just an ordinary day, I was getting ready for bed, all of a sudden my teeth ached, my jaw ached, my chest ached a very sharp deep pain and then a terrible pain across the top of my back - my shoulders, the back of my shoulders, and I just fell to the ground. I fell to the floor. It was horrific,” said Yasenchak. 
Earlier that night, Yasenchak devoured an entire pot of spaghetti and was certain the pain she was enduring was a bad case of indigestion. A few hours later, Yasenchak was rushed from the Malta Urgent Care and then was admitted into St. Peters Hospital where she underwent intensive surgery. Yasenchak suffered an aortic dissection, which is when the lining of the large blood vessel branching from the heart, tears. 
“The doctor that diagnosed me was the emergency room doctor and the test he ran showed the blood in my chest, so he knew it was an aortic dissection. That doctor said nothing about the prognoses, all he said was ‘you must be operated on immediately, or you’re not gonna make it until the morning.’”
According to the Cleveland Clinic, nearly 40% of patients die immediately after suffering a complete aortic dissection. 
The aortic repair surgery lasted seven hours, in which Kathy’s chest was cut open, her breastbone sawed in two, and her ribs split apart.
“The recuperation time was long and painful,” said Yasenchak. “Because of the severity of it, you’re in a lot of pain. That lengthens your recuperation time, and you have to move, but you don’t want to move because you hurt.” 
While her cardiac surgeon, Dr. Niloo Edwards was confident that Kathy would make a full recovery and will be able to resume her regular physical activity in time, her follow-up cardiologist had a more cautious approach and told her that she may never run again. 
Despite the doctor’s advisement, Yasenchak had pure confidence and most of all faith, that she will run again. 
“The fact that I had total faith that God had healed me. And when God heals you, he heals you! He doesn’t heal you half, he heals you.”
Through months of painful recovery, Yasenchak says she could not have done it without her family, the aid of her church friends, from Saratoga Abundant Life Church and trainer at the Saratoga Regional YMCA. 
“God healed me, I know it was God, I know it was a miracle that I’m still alive, but it was the community and how different people in the community gathered around me and helped,” said Yasenchak.
Yasenchak will be running in the Freihofer’s run alongside her two daughters, Tonya and Tara Yasenchak and their team, “Kathy’s Comeback,” on June 1, in Albany.
Published in Sports
Thursday, 06 September 2018 15:34

Matla 5K

Photos provided.

MALTA — On Saturday, September 8, the Roundabout Runners Club, will host its’ 9th annual 5K road race, starting at 8:30 a.m., in Malta’s two technology parks: NYSERDA’s Saratoga Technology and Energy Park and Luther Forest Technology Campus. GLOBALFOUNDRIES is proud to be the title sponsor of this event which last year raised well over $37,500 to support the VetHelp and Malta’s emergency first responders. The event starts at Hudson Valley Community College TEC Smart located within NYSERDA’s Saratoga Technology & Energy Park (STEP). The course then takes participants south though Luther Forest Technology Campus (LFTC). Once through LFTC, participants get the privilege of going through the Global Foundries campus. Almost 1 mile of the 3.1 miles will be on Global Foundries campus.  All participants will finish their 9/11 tribute under a giant American flag hoisted by the Round Lake Fire Department. Participants are encouraged to stick around after the event to enjoy post- race food provided by Hannaford. Fleet Feet Malta is our official prize sponsor and is providing cash prizes to our overall male and female winners. There will be over 54 award categories of all ages donated from local companies. The 1st 750 runners/joggers/ walkers are guaranteed a long- sleeve shirt. Interested participants can register from 3-8 p.m. on September 7th at Fleet Feet in Malta and the day off at TEC Smart at 7:30 a.m. Anyone registering the day of the race is urged to arrive at TEC Smart no later than 8 a.m. to ensure an on time start.

Published in Sports
Thursday, 28 June 2018 12:02

Firecracker4 on July 4

Photos provided.

SARATOGA SPRINGS — If you’re looking to begin your July 4th festivities in an invigorating fashion, register now for the 12th annual Firecracker4, a fourmile road race through Saratoga Springs that celebrates and honors America’s history. The first 3,700 registrants to sign up at firecracker4.com will receive a commemorative men’s and women’s cut tech shirt and swag bag.  Other perks include chip timing with live results, text/email alerts, finisher certificates, $7,000 in cash prizes, 186 award categories and prizes, a large vendor village located at the start/finish area, and 20 bands along the course to keep runners moving. Those looking to support local veterans during registration can also purchase a Firecracker4 Twill running hat. Fifty one percent of the profit will be donated to the Saratoga County Veterans Service Agency.  The Firecracker4 entry free from June 16 to July 1 is $35, and then $40 through race day. For more registration information, please visit the website.

“This event continues to grow steadily each year because we offer runners a friendly course that starts and finishes at the Saratoga Springs City Center and we are supporting some great local charity groups,” said Race Director Patrick Lynskey.

“We also provide a fun morning out that the whole family can enjoy before heading off to other family activities, or they can stick around downtown Saratoga Springs for all of the festivities,” Lynskey continued.

The Firecracker4, which is a USATF Team Championship- and USATF/Saratoga Stryders Grand Prix- sanctioned event, gets underway at 9 a.m. and will be followed at 10 a.m. by an awards ceremony. The third annual Firecracker Sparkler Kids’ Run, a half-mile fun run down Broadway for more than 500 kids of all ages and abilities presented by the Saratoga Children’s Museum, will then begin at 10:55 a.m. right before the July 4th parade.  All participants will receive a commemorative finisher’s medal and refreshments, and parents are invited to run with their children. The Firecracker Sparkler Kids’ Run entry fee is $5, and you can register online through July 2 at midnight at firecracker4.com. Participants can also sign up in person at registration/packet pick up held at the City Center on July 3 from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. and July 4 from 7 to 8:45 a.m.

“In keeping with the patriotic spirit of the day, we plan to have the Veterans Business Council formation run again this year,” said Lynskey, noting that the Firecracker4 plans to issue all runners with a flag-shaped bib, as well as hand out flag-shaped age group medals this year.

“Area veterans will form up and run to the start line, post the colors and then run the race in formation with the flag. Re-enactors from New York 2nd Continental Artillery will also help start the race with muskets.  Their presence adds something extra special to the event,” he stated.


Runners are encouraged to form male/female/co-ed teams, including open, USATF Adirondack clubs, military, public safety, scholastic and Run Your Colors. The Run Your Colors team with the most registered runners will win a $1,000 first place team award donated to the not-forprofit of its choice.  The second and third place teams will receive $500 and $250 respectively to donate to a charity of their choosing. Organizers will also hand out awards in five-year increments, as well as a special award category for military and public safety (police/ fire/EMS) competitors. After finishing their runs, participants and spectators are invited to wander through the event’s vendor village featuring an array of food, apparel and running/fitness/health vendors.  A partial vendor list includes: Bodywork Professionals Saratoga, Orangetheory Fitness, Grasso’s Italian Ice, Camp Abilities Saratoga, Power House Athletics, 9 Miles East Farm, Army National Guard, U.S. Marine Corps Reserve, and SPoT Coffee. They can also listen to Funk Evolution, one of the Capital Region’s hottest horn-fueled funk/ R&B bands, perform on the main stage located at the City Center from 8:45 to 11 a.m.

“Farmers Hardware Saratoga and Gaffney’s will also provide finishers with one free adult beverage, while supplies last, as well as offer food and drink specials and entertainment all night near the finish line,” Lynskey added.

Participants and spectators are invited to stay in town to enjoy the city’s festive All-American Celebration featuring a parade, sidewalk sale, BBQ, classic car show, fireworks at dusk in Congress Park and much more. A full event schedule can be found at: www.saratogajuly4th.com. Those interested in running the Firecracker4 course before race day are invited to head to The Barrelhouse (68 Beekman Street in Saratoga) and Farmers Hardware (35 Maple Ave., Saratoga Springs) on June 12, 19 and 26 at 6 p.m.  The practice sessions, presented by Fleet Feet Sports, will enable participants to run the course as a preview for race day before meeting back at Farmers Hardware.  For more information or to register, please visit firecracker4. com or call 518-587-1571. 

Published in Sports
Thursday, 25 May 2017 13:40

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

Published in Sports

Purchasing eyeglasses online may offer convenience to consumers, but according to the American Optometric Association (AOA), the consequences of making an incorrect or uninformed purchase could cost patients more time and money in the long run.

Eyeglasses are an investment in your health and must be custom-fitted not only to be comfortable, but also to meet particular prescriptive needs, which only an eye doctor and optician can determine. 

“Without visiting an eye doctor, patients run the risk of purchasing eyeglasses online with an improper fit or receiving the wrong prescription altogether,” said Dr. Alison Halpin. “Ultimately, patients can expend more time dealing with order mistakes and making returns than had they simply visited their local optometrist in the first place.”

An AOA study published in 2011 with the Optical Laboratories Association and The Vision Council reinforces the drawbacks of online orders. The study concluded:

• Of 200 glasses ordered online, only 154 pairs were received

• 44.8 percent had incorrect prescriptions or safety issues

•   29 percent had at least one lens fail to meet required prescription

• 19 percent of adult lenses failed impact resistance testing

•   25 percent of children’s lenses failed impact resistance testing

Purchasing eyeglasses from a local optometrist is the AOA’s first and foremost recommendation, but if patients are still interested in making a purchase online, be warned that consumers need to do their homework before making a final decision.

“If a consumer believes that ordering a pair of glasses online is in their best interest, it is important for the consumer to be fully informed regarding the potential pitfalls in doing so,” Halpin said. “The peer-reviewed study revealed that nearly half of all glasses ordered online had either prescription errors or failed to meet minimum safety standards. Personally, I find that very scary. Patients deserve better than that.”

Be advised to consider the following factors before making a purchase online:

The fit and material of 
the eyeglasses

How the eyeglasses fit is critically important — if the fit is incorrect, not only can a patient experience discomfort, such as pinching and headaches, but can also cause additional vision problems.

Consumers also need to consider the various options available for the lenses, and what is best for their particular prescription and lifestyle. Lenses come in various materials, such as traditional plastic, as well as thinner, lighter materials. Other considerations are the different coatings and treatments available such as non-glare coatings and photochromic lenses.

The accuracy of the prescription

Just because the eyeglasses “look right” on a person’s face doesn’t mean the measurements are correct. Pupil distance (PD) determines where to place the center of each lens in your frames to customize the optics to your eyes. This measurement is necessary to ensure the eyeglasses serve your vision needs properly. 

Consumers need an optometrist or optician to provide the PD and ensure precise measurements. However, the PD is not part of your prescription and not normally provided unless you ask for it. Your optometrist or optician can even legitimately charge for the service of providing your PD. The measurements needed for multifocals can only be accurately made once the frame is selected and properly fitted to your face, so typically this measurement is simply estimated for eyeglasses available online.

The retailer’s policies on purchases

• Returns: What is the website’s return policy if you are not satisfied with your purchase? How will the website deal with issues of prescription inaccuracies or other mistakes (wrong lenses coatings, wrong color, etc.)?

• Warrantees: Does the online retailer offer protection against lens scratching, how long this may be covered and what needs to be done to replace scratched lenses. How long is the frame warranty? What about children’s frames?

• Shipping: The cost and timeliness of shipments varies. Who pays for shipping returns?

• Pricing: Are protective eyeglass cases and cleaning cloths included, or are they “extras” added to the cost?

• Insurance: Some websites do not accept vision insurance. If you have a Flexible Spending Account (FSA), check to see what’s required to accept this as payment.

• Maintenance: Some websites provide a contact for this and may offer online tips for minor adjustments, but it might mean shipping your glasses away and being without them until the service is completed and they are returned.

For more in-depth detail about factors to consider before purchasing eyeglasses online, visit www.aoa.org to read a brochure offered by the AOA.

As the leaders of primary eye care in the United States, doctors of optometry are crucial in helping patients achieve optimum eye health and vision, and are the best resource to offer the highest quality eyeglasses.

 

Susan Halstead is a NYS and Nationally Licensed Optician and the Owner of Family Vision Care Center on Lake Avenue in Saratoga Springs. Please feel free to connect directly with Susan for information or questions related the above article at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Published in News

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