High Notes is a new weekly feature of The Gazette Opinion section that is designed to spotlight the good work of individuals and groups throughout our region.
We hope it serves to inspire others. If you have a suggestion for High Notes, send it to Editorial Page Editor Mark Mahoney at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In Schenectady, the Ring of Hope Boxing Club, which operates out of the Crosstown Plaza boxing gym on Watt Street, provides recreational opportunities for disadvantaged young men and women by teaching them the sport of kings. By providing this opportunity, the nonprofit organization gives kids an alternative to drug use, gang violence and despair through boxing, mentoring, physical and mental fitness, and education. Contributions pay for memberships for disadvantaged kids. Visit www.ringofhopeboxingclub.org.
In Rotterdam, Jason Lange of Schenectady and some of his friends held a giant game of tag at Maple Ski Ridge as a way to raise money for local charities. Among those benefitting from the game were the American Red Cross, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, the Alzheimer's Association and the Susan G. Komen foundation, which raises money for cancer research. Organizers had hoped to raise even more awareness for the event and money for the charities by breaking a world record for the largest game of tag. While the effort fell short of the record, they had a lot of fun and helped a lot of people in need.
In Niskayuna, 89-year-old Gene Whitney, a former soccer coach at SUNY Delhi, is raising awareness about concussions in soccer and promoting the use of headgear to prevent the injuries. Many concussions in the sport occur not from players hitting the ball with their heads, but from butting heads with other players as they each attempt to get to the ball. Mr. Whitney is hoping that some kind of head gear can be developed that would bring down the number of head injuries. Even if this effort doesn't succeed, he's already gotten more people thinking about how to combat concussions especially among young players.