Your Community

Community 08.22.19

Family Movie Night

The Greenbush Reformed Church would like to welcome the public to a showing of a family friendly PG movie in our Chilton Hall on Thursday, August 22nd. Our hall is located at 14 Hayes Road, East Greenbush. Doors will open at 6pm, and movie snacks will be provided. All children must have a supervising adult. We hope to see you there!

Nøpiates Committee to Host Memorial Walk and Vigil

Wednesday, August 28th, 2019 at 6pm

The Nøpiates Committee along with the support of other community members and organizations including New York National Guard – CounterDrug Task Force, Youth Voices Matter, and  Rensselaer County Heroin Coalition will participate in a Memorial Walk and Rally on Wednesday, August 28th at 6pm.  We gather to remember our lost loved ones, bring hope and support for those who struggle with substance use disorders and celebrate those who are in recovery.

Beginning at 6:00 pm, attendees will gather at the  West Sand Lake Elementary School, 24 Meeler Road, West Sand Lake, and will finish at the West Sand Lake Fire House at 3697 NY-43. The walk will be followed by a brief ceremony in which we will honor loved ones lost, provide support.  We continue to speak out and raise awareness as we continue to reduce the shame and stigma associated with substance use disorders. By coming together to remember our friends, neighbors, loved ones, we stand together to say that more needs to be done to end overdose in our community.

For anyone who has lost a loved one that would like to honor and remember them in a photo presentation at our ceremony, please send a digital photo along with  your loved one’s name, date of birth, date of loss to by August 20th, 2019.

French Course

La Fédération Franco-Américaine du NY will be offering a beginners French course.  Dr. Janet L. Shideler, Professor of French at Siena College will be the instructor.  In addition to beginners, this class will also be for anyone who has taken a beginners course in the past, and wishes to improve their French.  The cost of the course will be $70 for 8 sessions beginning September 5, 2019.  The classes will be held on Thursday evenings from 6:30pm to 7:30pm at Siena College.  There will be a limit of 15 students.  For questions regarding the program, or to sign up for the course, call Tom Jacques, 518-541-3216.  Send checks payable to FeFany, PO Box 354, Cohoes, NY 12047 by August 29, 2019.

Troop 525 Summer Camp Perfection!

Troop 525 of West Sand Lake had an excellent time at summer camp this year. Earning merit badges in Basketry, Leatherwork, Art, Photography, Shotgun Shooting, Rifle Shooting, Small Boat Sailing, Animation, Exploration, Sports, Athletics, Environmental Science, Finger Printing, Geology, Archery, Wilderness Survival, First Aid, Climbing, Orienteering, Soil and Water Conservation, Nature, Chess, BSA LifeGuard and CPR certifications, and multiple awards including Matt Donnelly and Aiden Fedorwicz ( photo above ) earning first place in the team shotgun shoot!

You can learn more about us by visiting our Troop. We meet every Tuesday from 6:30 PM- 8:00 PM at The Salem United Methodist Church in West Sand Lake, NY. Anyone ages 11-17 are welcome to come check us out. You can email us at for more information. It is never too late! You don’t want to miss out on all the fun!

Defensive Driving Class at Gilead Lutheran Church, Brunswick on October 5

Gilead Lutheran Church will host a 6 hour defensive driving class on Saturday, October 5, from 9:00 AM to 3:30 PM. This is a NYS DMV approved class that will offer a 10% reduction off your auto insurance and up to 4 points off your NYS driver’s license! Exciting and interactive PowerPoint presentation and never a test to pass the course!

Cost of this class is just $30 per person and must be paid at the door. Doors open at 8:30 AM. Lunch items will be available for sale for an additional cost.

Gilead church is located at 308 Brick Church Road (Route 278), Troy, New York 12180. We are handicapped accessible and have loads of free close parking. SPACES ARE LIMITED and will sell out fast -again- at this price!!  To reserve your seat please call John at 518-279-9552.  Please drive safely!

ALL proceeds from this class will be donated to the church.

France Magnifique

La Fédération Franco-Américaine du NY is sponsoring a trip to France, featuring the 75th Anniversary of D-Day & Normandy, April 23 – May 7, 2020. Rates include round trip air from New York, air taxes and fees/surcharges, hotel transfers, and 20 meals. Highlights of the trip: Paris, River Seine cruise, Normandy, Omaha Beach, Le Mont St. Michel, Loire Valley, 2-night Chateau stay, winery tour, Lyon, Les Halles de Lyon, Paul Boscuse Market, Avignon, Creme Brûlée Cooking demonstration, Nice, Monaco. Plenty of time to explore on your own. For more information, pricing or a brochure, call Lisa at Plaza Travel at 518-785-3338 or

Rensselaer County Recovery Helpline


Do you need help with substance use issues? Are you interested in volunteering for the helpline? The Rensselaer County Recovery Helpline offers information, local resources, and referrals for individuals and their families regarding substance use issues. The toll-free line is available 7 days a week from 9am-9pm. Each volunteer chooses shifts of 4 hours at a time to be on-call. When someone calls the number, a volunteer answers on their own smartphone, and can enter information to a database on their own computer, allowing for easy and quick access to resources. The information is sent to one of the 9 leaders, who will then assist the caller. If you or someone you know needs information, resources, or a referral for a substance use problem, call 1-833-467-3123. For more information, or if you are interested in volunteering, contact

Feel Good

Do You Miss Him..??

We were going through some old pictures

When we came upon one of my Grandpa,

The most important male figure in my life.

“Do you miss him?”, my grandson asked.

“Yes, I do!”, I responded, and

I again ached with that feeling of loss.

He asked me how my Grandpa had died.

I told him of an abdominal aneurysm

That burst and led to Grandpa’s death.

Later, when we were riding our bikes,

He asked, “How old was your Grandpa when he died?”

To which I replied, “He was 78.”

“Yeah, but”  he said……

“You don’t have that condition, right?”

I assured him I did not.

His concern for such things

Touched my heart…..

He felt the past…and worried about the future!

I hope to live to the age Grandpa did

And much longer if I can:

My grandson needs me…and I need him!!

-Lloyd Barnhart

West Sand Lake, NY

A Family Outing

I almost didn’t walk that way this morning after hearing a warning bark from he third house on the right where a hostile dog flings doggie insults at my dog, Sophie whenever we pass. FOrtunately our enemy was just hopping into the family car; the coast was clear, so we proceeded. This section of Eastern Union Turnpike is straight but dippy. Up ahead I saw a large buck unhurriedly crossing the road. There was a car approaching.

Close behind the buck was a doe, and behind the doe straggled three tiny fawns. I was enthralled by the scene but almost paralyzed with fear. With the dips in the road, would the driver see them, and brake in time? Holding my breath, I watched as the little family made the crossing safely. The tableau had been so beautiful, the relief so great, I had to share it with someone, but no one was there except Sophie, and she didn’t get it. As the car passed me; I gave an enthusiastic “thumbs up” and waved wildly (Actually, I almost did a cartwheel). From inside the care there were vigorous answering waves and happy smiles. Mutual wonder and relief flowed between us. There was joy in the sharing — no words were necessary. It lifted my day, even my week.

Naomi Boel

Averill Park

Memoirs of an Amnesiac:  101 Recipes for Blubber

As a kid, I used to dread the start of a new school year. But when that first​ day arrived, it was mostly tame; and the only homework was to put a cover on my​ newtextbooks. Usually that meant slicing up brown paper bags, but one year my​ Dad brought home some novelty book-covers with clever titles. My Math book​ might be disguised as: “Cough Your Way to Success” or “Raising a Pet Mosquito”​ or “Concrete Blocks, a Love Story”. With cool books like that, I was sure to​ impress.​ I was custodian of each book, and had to write my name in the back, below names​ from previous years. I wondered which one had written these instructions inside​ the front cover: “IN CASE OF FIRE, THROW IN”. Whoever it was probably thought​ he had invented that gag. But I’m pretty sure it dates back to ancient Egypt,​ maybe the library at Alexandria. Anyway, my name was now on the list of​ graffiti suspects.​ Soon I’d have to learn what was in those books, and there wasn’t always enough​ time. If I had started them during the Summer, I might have gotten a jump​ on the school year. And let’s face it: ten weeks of vacation weren’t all​ packed with fun. I sometimes caught myself watching old TV reruns. Even​ worse: during a presidential election year, I might be reduced to watching​ political conventions. That was rock-bottom! What if I had made better use of​ those boring times plus lightened my load during the school year?​ It makes perfect sense to me now, but I’m not sure what my nine-year-old self​ would have said. He might have preferred listening to his arteries harden,​ rather than crack open a textbook during Summer.​​

Ron McKee​

Averill Park

Letters to the Editor

Prescription Drug Costs

I am constantly hearing about the excess costs of Medicare.

Prescription drugs are a large part of this expense.

Do you know that Medicare is prohibited by law from negotiating for lower drug prices?

Did you know that the Veterans Administration does negotiate their prescription drug prices – and Medicare Part D pays on average 80% more than the VA for brand name drugs?

Wouldn’t it make sense to provide negotiated saving to the Medicare program?

As the AARP lead volunteer for the 19th congressional district, I urge Representative Antonio Delgado to support legislation to allow Medicare to use its enormous buying power to negotiate lower prescription drug prices. Please join me in calling on our congressman to be a leader in this fight.

Fran Hamblin, AARP lead volunteer in New York’s 19th Congressional District, East Nassau

The Growing Importance of Prescription Drugs

Your July 25th letter “On Medicine Regulations” addressed an issue of growing importance: the importation of prescription drugs. Many Americans buy drugs on their own from other countries; technically, it’s not allowed, but they do it because they simply can’t afford the drug at American prices – the highest for brand name drugs in the world.

That’s why state lawmakers should pass – and Governor Cuomo should support – S5682/A7588, a bill to establish a system for importing prescription drugs approved as safe by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and certified by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. President Trump is exploring allowing the FDA to approve such importation plans – a move favored by around 80% of voters.

As it is, about 80% of the main ingredients in prescription drugs sold in the United States are imported, and drug manufacturers already import 40% of finished prescription drugs on U.S. shelves.  But mainly because of cost, nearly four of every 10 American voters 50 and older did not fill a prescription, according to a 2019 AARP survey.

Safe drug importation is an important component of AARP’s efforts to #StopRxGreed and make prescription drugs more affordable.

Kat Fisher, AARP Associate State Director for Eastern New York, Shokan, NY

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