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Keith Lobdell

Stories by Keith

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Winter Sports Preview: Westport

The Westport varsity boys and girls basketball teams return all 10 payers that started between the two squads in 2012-13, looking for their experience to be a key in the new Northern Basketball League.

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Westport seeks new options for old buildings

With continually deteriorating conditions at the town hall, Westport Fire House and Department of Public Works garage, the town officials met with representatives of Vermont Integrated Architecture to talk with about 40 members of the community on a new set of plans to renovate the town hall and replace the fire house and garage Dec. 2.

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Radio resolution tabled until all sides are heard

The decision on who will install new mobile radios in the county’s emergency vehicles was temporarily put on hold Nov. 25 so both businesses looking for the contract could speak to the board.

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Winter Sports Preview: Keene

The Keene varsity boys and girls basketball teams return experience and height to the court for the start of the Northern Basketball League's Division III season.

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Winter Sports Preview: Elizabethtown-Lewis

The Elizabethtown-Lewis girls varsity basketball team takes to the court as the defending Section VII/Class D champion, while the boys program will look to a squad of experienced players for a competitive Northern Basketball League season.

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Douglas, Strong return to lead AVCS from the point

Here, the name of the school could be changed to PGHS - Point Guard High School. That’s because the school is home to a duo of elite one-guards in the Northern Basketball League - boys’ varsity senior Shane Douglas and girls’ varsity junior Meghan Strong.

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Essex County votes for potential override of tax levy cap

The board voted at its Dec. 2 regular meeting to override the New York State tax levy cap which County Manager Daniel Palmer said calculated to just over two percent for the 2014 spending plan.

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Essex County budget draws no reaction from public

Only one person signed up to speak at the Nov. 25 special Essex County Board of Supervisors meeting soliciting comment on the 2014 tentative county budget. However, when it was his turn to speak, Gale Wilkins of Willsboro said County Manager Daniel Palmer’s presentation had answered his questions.

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Concerns over Etown bridge raised to DOT head

Commissioner Joan McDonald said she would ask members of her team to look over the proposed closure scheduled for the Fisher Bridge, located near the intersection of Route 9N and Lincoln Pond Road in Elizabethtown.

Essex Inn welcomes new management

“This is a tremendous opportunity to come in here, play and do what we do,” said Castro, who has worked in the food business for Culinary Health Innovations of Plattsburgh and Cafe Mooney Bay. “We had been in communication with the Daltons (owners) about the opportunity and it is something we had been looking for. This is the right place to do what we do.”

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Organizers lay out plans for 2014 Empire State Winter Games

The 2014 Empire State Winter Games, set to take place Feb. 6-9, will feature some new events and new venues for the 34th annual sporting competition, something that members of the regional organizing coalition have been striving to do over the last four years.

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Au Sable Valley hosts student musicians for Area All State

More than 250 students from Essex and Franklin County schools made their way to Au Sable Valley to participate in the annual Zone 6 Area All State Concert Saturday, Nov. 23.

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Veteran’s Memorial Highway, Whiteface peak to be renovated

Wilmington Supervisor Randy Preston said that he is always pleased when New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo visits the area.

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State brings together Trudeau, Clarkson

Cuomo announced a partnership between New York State, Clarkson University, and the Trudeau Institute to form a world-class biotech enterprise during a Nov. 20 press conference at the Lake Placid Conference Center.

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Budget sub-committee talks cuts

The head of the Essex County Budget sub-committee outlined steps the county could take to curtail spending. Lewis Supervisor David Blades, who led the break-off council of the Finance Committee, reported their findings to the members of the Board of Supervisors during a special Nov. 18 meeting.

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Alzheimer’s Awareness tournament starts this weekend

For the third year, the North Country basketball season will begin with the Alzheimer’s Awareness Basketball tournament, played at two sites over two weekends and featuring several local hoops teams.

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Essex County sows seeds of levy cap override

Members of the Essex County Board of Supervisors put the wheels in motion to override New York State’s two percent tax levy cap during a special meeting Nov. 18.

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Paquette surges ahead of Sherman after absentee count

One race was turned on absentee votes cast and counted by the Essex County Board of Supervisors Nov. 13.

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Willsboro teacher, parents speak out

In an email to the Valley News sent Nov. 19, Willsboro Central School teacher Natalie Foster made her first public comment since the Willsboro Board of Education reinstated her following an investigation into the environment in her classroom.

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Road work to bottleneck important Etown intersection

The New York State Department of Transportation red-flagged the bridge over the Boquet River located at the base of the intersection of Route 9N and Lincoln Pond Road.

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Jonathan Gay runs to 24th place finish at state XC meet

While the Eagles sophomore did not get the finish position he was looking for, Gay continued to show improvement in his first season, running the 3.1-mile Queensbury High School course in a sectional-equalling time of 16:44, earning a top 25 finish.

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Keene veterans dedicate WWII wall

For the pair of World War II veterans — Smith, a founding member of the Army’s 10th Mountain Division, and Hendrickson, who served in the Pacific Theater as a member of the Navy — the dedication of the new WWII wall at the park on Veteran’s Day, Nov. 11, was something they had looked forward to.

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Lady Patriots fall in Class C regional finals

Voorheesville, the state runner-up in Class C last season, ousted the Patriots from the Class C playoffs with a 25-20, 25-16, 25-8 straight-game victory in the regional finals at Gloversville Nov. 9.

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Westport seniors to present ‘The Election’

Take the Westport Central School Class of 2014, for example. After funding for the traditional senior play was cut from the school budget, class members joined together with teachers Cathy Brankman, Paul Mudie and Vicki Wolinski to move forward and present “The Election” Friday, Nov. 15, at 7 p.m. in the school auditorium.

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United Way makes annual appeal at Essex County Board of Supervisors

United Way of the Adirondack Region Executive Director John Bernardi returned to the Essex County Board of Supervisors Monday, Nov. 4, to make his annual appeal for the organization’s fundraising effort.

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Strawberry festival honored with Heritage Award

The Wadhams Strawberry Festival, held on Father’s Day each year, was honored with the North Country Heritage Award by the Canton-based organization Traditional Arts in Upstate New York (TAUNY).

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Savage state finalist for Heisman

Dillon Savage, a senior running back for the Patriots, was selected as a state finalist for the Wendy’s High School Heisman Award, presented annually to a male and female high school student-athlete on the same day as the Heisman Memorial Award, which is given to the nation’s top college football player.

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Patriots set for regional title tilt with Voorheesville

After three years of watching their season end at the hands of the Voorheesville Lady Blackbirds (20-1) in state regional play, the Lady Patriots (18-1) will have to make the fourth time a charm in order to achieve their goal of advancing to the NYSPHSAA state championships at the Glens Falls Civic Center next weekend.

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Open house set Nov. 9 to view county horses

The horses, taken from the Wing and a Prayer Farm in Essex Sept. 18 through 20 after an investigation, led to charges against owner Shelley Wing and daughter, Emily, on counts of animal cruelty. On Oct. 9, the horses were deemed to be property of the county after Wing was unable to pay a bond for their care.

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Date set for budget hearing

Members of the board approved scheduling the annual public hearing for the county budget during its Nov. 4 regular board meeting. The hearing will take place on Monday, Nov. 25, at 7 p.m. at the Old County Courthouse in Elizabethtown. The regular monthly meeting of the Ways and Means Committee will be held before the hearing at 6 p.m. (normally held at 10 a.m.).

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Westport Chamber leader looks to future of town

According to the head of the Westport Chamber of Commerce, Westport is ready to poised for a breakthrough.

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Lions, Patriots in sectional finals

AuSable Valley wins volleyball, two swim titles, ELCS boys soccer falls in classic

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Patriots advance to regional volleyball final

The AuSable Valley girls varsity volleyball team is headed back to the Class C regional finals and a matchup with Section II power Voorheesville Nov. 9.

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NYCO Prop receives state approval

Voters throughout the state of New York voted 1,137,074 in favor of a land swap between the mineral mining company and the state, while 1,006,525 voted against the measure. The 53-47 percent vote was the closest of the six propositions sent out to voters in the Nov. 5 General Election.

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Essex County goes to the polls

Kristy Sprague received 6,788 as an unopposed candidate for re-election to the DA position, while coroner Francis Whitelaw received 5,394 votes in his uncontested re-election bid.

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Gardner tabbed as new Essex Supervisor

Ed Gardner, Jr., received 145 votes in the Nov. 5 General Election, while incumbent Sharon Boisen received 114. Currently, 24 of 35 absentee ballots have been received by the Essex County Board of Elections.

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Merrihew back as Elizabethtown Supervisor

Two years after Supervisor and former Essex County Board chairman Noel Merrihew, III, was ousted by Margaret Bartley, he was returned to office by voters, 248-195, after ballots were counted Nov. 5.

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Bartley, Merrihew prepare for second round in Eilizabethtown

For the second straight election for the office of town supervisor, current Supervisor Margaret Bartley will face off against former Supervisor Noel Merrihew, who she defeated in 2011.

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NYCO donates cameras to thrift shop

The store, located above the Deer’s Head Restaurant, will now house a security camera system donated by NYCO Minerals.

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Towns set for contested races

While only four towns in the Valley have a contested election for town supervisor, several other towns have contested elections in other positions Nov. 5.

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Westport's 'one man team' advances to state XC meet

Jonathan Gay finishes fourth overall

Jonathan Gay of Westport crossed the finish line of the 3.1 mile Section VII championships at the Cobble Hill Country Club in Elizabethtown in a time of 16:44, a fourth place overall finish and the second quickest for Class D runners.

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Boisen, Gardner vie for Essex Supervisor seat

Incumbent Sharon Boisen, who won her first re-election bid in a tight contest against Frank Walls in 2011, will face challenger Ed Gardner Jr., in the general election.

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Patriot spikers advance to C title game

The AuSable Valley varsity girls volleyball team will look for its fourth Section VII/Class C title after scoring a 3-0 match win against Saranac in the sectional semifinals Oct. 31.

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Elizabethtown-Lewis Central School hosts field day for young students

Elizabethtown-Lewis Central School students in kindergarten as well as the Children's Development preschool program were able to pick pumpkins for a patch created on campus to help curb the costs of field trips. Students also enjoyed face painting, pumpkin carving, snacks and a wagon ride with Rowdy.

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Hatch faces challenge from Gilliland in Willsboro

Incumbent Supervisor Ed Hatch is running against current town Councilman Shaun Gilliland in the Tuesday, Nov. 5, election.

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Moriah blanks Westport to advance to Class D girls final

The second seed Vikings blanked the sixth seed Westport Eagles, 6-0, Oct. 29 to punch their ticket to the sectional title game to be played at Plattsburgh High Saturday, Nov. 2, at 5 p.m.

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Lions advance to Class D finals

The Lions scored a 3-1 win against Wells Oct. 28 to advance to the finals, where they will face top-seeded and defending NYSPHSAA Class D champion Chazy at Plattsburgh High School Saturday, Nov. 2, at 7 p.m.

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Spooky movies to help benefit Palace Theater

To help save the historic theater as part of the “Go Digital or Go Dark” Campaign, a pair of films will be shown at the end of this month to help set the mood for the Halloween season and build up the funds needed to convert the Palace Theater movie screens from 35mm film to digital.

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Drew earns national honors in goal for Canton

Evan Drew, a 2010 graduate of ELCS, was named the United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA) with Goalie of the Week for Oct. 15. He was previously honored with the award Sept. 10.

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Hurricane, St. Regis fire towers to get facelifts

DEC staff members have drafted a Unit Management Plan (UMP) that calls for the fire tower to be repaired for “Public Access and Communications” use. Under the plan, the tower would be maintained for full public access and include written interpretive materials that would be, “informative but not intrusive.”

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