In Schenectady, several students from the Schenectady Working In Neighborhoods (Schenectady-WIN) program were among the volunteers who recently got together at the Carver Community Center to prepare the Hamilton Hill facility for renovation work. The 18 students who participated gained hands-on experience to complement their classroom work learning about the construction industry and preparing them for employment in the field. The effort was part of the Miracle on Craig Street initiative that’s working to reopen the old community center, which closed five years ago. Organizers of the effort hope to reopen the center next fall, but still need to raise $120,000 for the renovation and repairs. For more information on the Miracle on Craig Street effort, visit miracleoncraigstreet.org.
In Charlton, volunteers helped collect and load more than 130 Christmas trees donated by more than a dozen area growers that will be donated to military families around the country as part of the 14th annual Trees for Troops program. National Guard troops, college students and other volunteers helped load up a FedEx tractor-trailer, which was to deliver the trees to the Hunter Army Airfield in Georgia. In addition to the trees, the shipment included stars collected from retired American flags and paper ornaments made by elementary school students from Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake. Nationwide, Trees for Troops — sponsored by the Christmas SPIRIT Foundation and FedEx Corp. — has collected thousands of trees from 27 states for military families in the U.S. and overseas. For more information and to donate, visit: the Christmas SPIRIT Foundation at ChristmasSPIRITFoundation.org and Trees for Troops at TreesforTroops.org.
In Clifton Park, Carol Hotaling of Rexford, known as the “Yellow Ribbon Lady,” continued her 27-year tradition of hand-making yellow ribbons to send to U.S. military members for the Christmas season. Hundreds of the ribbons were recently sent by truck to Fort Drum in Jefferson County (near Watertown). VFW Post 358 of Ballston Spa donated the approximately $500 needed to purchase the 75 rolls of ribbon Hotaling used, and Jamie Margelot of Nigro Companies in Albany volunteered to drive the truck the 165 miles to the military base. Hotaling makes the ribbons every year to remind soldiers that they’re appreciated.
High Notes is a feature of The Gazette Opinion section that appears every Monday to spotlight the good being done in our communities by individuals, organizations and businesses. Reader submissions to High Notes are welcome. Send suggestions to Editorial Page Editor Mark Mahoney at [email protected]