The blood drive will take place from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. Friday at 16 Crescent Drive in Kirkwood. Trooper Skinner served with the State Police for 13 years before he was killed in the line of duty in 2014. He also was a firefighter with the Five Mile Point Fire Company. The Red Cross says blood donations often decline during the holidays as people get busy and travel. KIRKWOOD (WBNG) — The Five Mile Point Fire Department is inviting the community to pay tribute to late New York State Trooper Christopher Skinner at its sixth annual blood drive in his memory. If you would like to donate, you can make an appointment by downloading the Blood Donor App, calling 1-800-REDCROSS, or visiting this link.
Lyman says her advice for fellow undergrads navigating their own college experience is to stand behind your work. Lyman says she hopes the scholarship will help advance her goal to work in psychological research, and while she doesn’t know exactly what that will look like, she says she hopes to go into academia. But she did get it. Lyman says the scholarship always seemed like a long shot because of her field of study, saying she was told the scholarship normally only goes to what she called “hard science.” “I play a rejection game. I know I submitted the best application I could, and then I tell myself you won’t get this. Don’t get too excited,” she said. At a time when COVID-19 is shining a spotlight on mental health, that’s something she says is critical. (WBNG) — When Maine-Endwell High School graduate and current University of Buffalo junior Cassondra Lyman applied for the Goldwater Scholarship, she decided to set her expectations low. “We all follow an imperial scientific method in order to find our results, so it’s important that we take these fields seriously,” she said. “I had this ‘woo hoo’ moment, and I just bolted upstairs and told my family and boyfriend and I was like ‘I won it!'” she said. She says she feels scientific research is scientific research, and that’s what the scholarship looks at. “Being able to reduce the stigma associated with these disorders takes research so we can better understand them. If you don’t understand something it’s easy to have misconceptions,” she said, “There’s a tendency to kind of write psychology off as a soft science,” she said. “They distinguish between soft and hard sciences and really there isn’t that kind of difference.” “If you believe that the work you are doing is of as high caliber as the work that other people in other fields are doing — that should mean something to you and to everyone else if you want it to.”
In addition to providing a place for discussions, organizer Emilie Prudent told 12 News the group was also gathering as a way to ‘black out’ the Fourth of July holiday. Organizers said the event was an opportunity to discuss issues of racism, police brutality and changes they would like to see made to local police policies. Prudent said the event was also intended to be a follow up to last month’s Juneteenth celebration, and an opportunity to celebrate Black culture in general. The event ran from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. and included food, music and guest speakers. Prudent said, “The Fourth of July is America’s day of independence, the slaves were freed on June 19, 1865. This is not our holiday so I feel like we should not be celebrating it.” BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — The Southern Tier chapter of Citizen’s Action of New York held a ‘speak out’ at Columbus Park in Binghamton Saturday afternoon.
The most recent is a regulation from Governor Andrew Cuomo mandating that all bars and restaurants in New York State only serve alcohol to those ordering food. From limiting the number of people in the restaurant, to social distancing efforts and requiring masks to be worn, Kipp voiced frustration. “It was really tough not seeing everybody for a long time, and as they start coming back, it was really great just seeing everybody that we’ve missed,” he said. As for the Old Union, Kipp said the cooks are getting a menu prepared. While a new regulation means more changes, Kipp is all for it if it means customers can keep on coming back. “I feel like a lot of the bars and restaurants are being held to much higher standards than most other industries,” he said. However, safety measures aren’t something Kipp takes lightly. “We’re gonna abide by the rules,” Kipp said. “Our customers’ safety, our community’s safety, and my staff’s safety have always been a top priority here.” “We’re fortunate enough where that most people who come here get something to eat anyway,” he said. “It kind of makes it tough for the places who are more bars than restaurants.” Some restaurants have started selling cheap items as a way to get around the mandate, such as a bar in Saratoga Springs selling “Cuomo Chips.” For the Old Union Hotel in Binghamton, the mandate doesn’t have a big impact, but owner Adam Kipp is worried about his fellow businesses. “We’re gonna be coming up with a small bites menu that we can serve late night. It’be a little bit more than just chips,” he laughed. BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — Restaurants and bars in the Southern Tier aren’t unfamiliar with changes that have been frequent the last few months.
CANDOR (WBNG) — More than a month has passed since the beginning of phase four in New York State and gyms and fitness centers have still not been allowed to reopen. Now one gym owner in Candor is joining the fight to get those facilities reopened safely. “Most of us feel that exercise is medicine, and that’s probably why we’re such a vocal bunch– we feel like by being open we’re helping the situation– not hurting it,” he says. “Reports show that infections are rising in more than 40 states…We understand that some people aren’t happy – but better unhappy than sick or worse. We fully intend to defend the actions taken in these matters,” Conwall went on to say. “It’s a small mom and pop boutique gym here in Candor, NY. We cater primarily to helping women succeed with fitness,” he says. Fay also argues that big gyms and smaller fitness centers should not be lumped into the same category when it comes to making health related decisions. “When you talk gyms most people think large boxes with lots of people going in and out, personal training studios only have a few people,” he says. “We need to get back to where we were quickly, with a lot of the businesses still closed it’s putting a huge dent in our ability to recover,” he says. “We have our safety plan, we have our cleaning plan, we have all of our equipment required to clean, if they say masks that’s what we’ll do,” he says. For their part, the State defends the decision to keep gyms closed. Now over a month later, New York gyms are still closed and Fay says he’s looking for answers. He also argues that gyms should have been essential from the beginning, as they help people fight diabetes and obesity, two things associated with a higher risk of severe COVID-19 symptoms. Governor Cuomo’s office says they intend to fight the lawsuit. Fay says while his business is in a solid spot to weather the pandemic, he’s joining the fight on behalf of many fellow gym owners who aren’t so fortunate. “The actions taken by the Governor with respect to gyms and fitness centers are wholly consistent with the powers granted to the Executive by the Legislature. The measures the Governor has taken were intended to – and did – curb the rise of infection across the State. They also allowed us to avoid subsequent spikes of infection,” Governor Cuomo’s spokesman Jason Conwall told 12 News in part. Running Fay’s has been a way of life for Ron and his family for more than thirty years. Like all gyms, Fay was forced to close down due to the coronavirus, and they had hoped to reopen as part of phase four. “We told our membership okay here’s the day, this is the day we’re going to reopen and everyone was all excited to come back and then a few days before it was ‘gyms couldn’t,'” he says. “We’re ready to roll whenever the state is,” say Ron Fay, owner of Fay’s Fitness Co. in Candor. Fay argues that gyms and fitness centers can be reopened safely, and that’s why he’s joined a lawsuit with 600 other fitness facilities arguing that gyms should not be singled out. “When? That’s what we really want to know, when can we reopen?” he says.
“I just remember him here at Chenango valley in 2008,” said Tidick. “He was always that kind of kid. He was always the first one to practice, the last one to leave.” After spending 2019 between the Brewers Single-A and Double-A teams, the 2009 CV graduate was added to the Brewers alternate training site late July. “I was able to stick to my game plan expect for one pitch you know, kind of got beat but you have to tip your cap sometimes,” said Topa. “It was just an amazing experience to be around those guys.” “I was up in Appleton (WI) at the alternate site, and throwing pretty well and I knew in the back of my head some moves had to be made to get the opportunity,” he said. “It was pretty emotional calling my dad and sister. Unfortunately we lost my mom in December so that would’ve been one phone call I would’ve loved to make,” said Topa. When that opportunity came Monday morning, he immediately called his family. Topa pitched two innings in his debut, striking out two batters and giving up two runs on a two-run home run from the bat of Victor Reyes. Topa’s former coach David Tidick was watching closely back here in Binghamton. Topa’s road to the big leagues hasn’t been easy since getting drafted in 2013. He’s had Tommy John surgery twice, was released from the Pirates in 2017 and had a stint in independent ball. “He looked very calm and poised on the mound which is always how he’s been on the field,” he said. “He’s been in my corner forever since I was at CV,” said Topa. “I knew if that time came that was going to be one of the first phone calls, just to thank him for everything, just all the support.” “Hard work has to continue. Have to keep grinding,” said Topa. “I believe in my stuff and I knew hard work was going to get me here.” Tidick said the composure Topa showed on the mound was similar to his time on the mound for CV. “When that number popped up, I couldn’t answer it any faster,” said Tidick. “He got right into it and said ‘coach, I got the call I’m going up.'” Tidick said he always knew Topa was special, on and off the field. “There’s a lot of doubt at certain times throughout this journey,” said Topa. “That year in Indy ball was what I needed. Get the love for the game again and just go out, have fun with the guys.” “It would’ve been probably easy for someone to give up after the surgeries, but that’s not a word for Justin or a phrase, to give up,” said Tidick. Tidick now coaches on the Maine-Endwell varsity baseball staff. He and Topa have stayed close over the years. After calling his family, Tidick was one of the first people Topa reached out to Monday. (WBNG) — Tuesday night former Chenango Valley baseball player Justin Topa made his MLB debut after a seven-year journey through the minors. Now that his first game is under his belt, Topa is eager for another opportunity. While he continues to live his dream, Topa feels the community standing behind him. “I get a lot of messages from everybody and it’s truly amazing,” said Topa. “I certainly love the support. If I can’t get back to everybody right now I just want everybody to know I really appreciate it. It means a lot to me.”
McGoff said he’s hopeful it will be possible to play section and state tournaments for all three seasons. The press release sent by the league said superintendents, athletic directors and league officials discussed multiple options. Ultimately, STAC Executive Director Kevin McGoff said postponing was the best scenario to keep students safe. The press release said STAC is hoping all athletic seasons can begin and end on schedule. As outlined on the NYSPHSAA website, the condensed seasons will run ten weeks each. The dates are listed as tentative. McGoff said other factors played into the decision, including transportation and the possibility of a COVID-19 spike this fall. “We hope there’s no outbreak but if there is an outbreak, school is going to shut down perhaps,” he said. “There’s also other obstacles going on with transportation, some schools, do they have enough transportation?” “Being a difficult decision and weighing all the factors, it would have been very difficult to accomplish something safely and in the best interest of the atheltes,” said McGoff. STAC will follow the condensed fall, winter and spring model laid out by the New York State Public High School Athletic Association. This decision comes one day after the Interscholastic Athletic Conference (IAC) pushed all fall sports to March. Season I (Winter Sports) – January 4 – March 13Season II (Fall Sports) – March 1 – May 8Season III (Spring Sports) – April 5 – June 12 (WBNG) — The Southern Tier Athletic Conference (STAC) has postponed all athletics until January 4, 2021 .
But the Tioga Arts Council say they are thrilled with the community’s response and turnout. The Tioga Arts Council partnered with the Historic Owego Marketplace to bring a series of community-based art initiatives to the village for the holiday season. Around 27 community members created banners to hand up around Owego, with those as young as age 7 contributing, according to the Tioga Arts Council. OWEGO (WBNG) — If you visit the Village of Owego sometime soon, you may notice some festive artwork. “Throughout all the months, what I find so heartening is how the community comes together despite the adversity and times that we are in,” said Christina Di Stefano, Executive Director of the Tioga Arts Council, adding, “It’s been so nice seeing a grandparent and grandaughter come in saying what a wonderful time they have.” Tioga Art Center also says they want to be able to continue to promote joy through art, especially during the difficult months ahead. The hope, organizers say, is to keep up the holiday spirit as the town had to cancel the traditional “Lights on the River Banner’ due to the pandemic. Organizers add they hope the art will draw more people to explore the downtown area and shop locally.