Click on the ad above to reach the Glenora website.


Seneca Harbor Station & Captain Bill's

To reach the website of the Seneca Harbor Station and Captain Bill's, click here.


Senka Agency

As an independent insurance agent we work for YOU. We have many companies to choose from to get YOU the best coverage and price.

If you are looking for someone who works for YOU, please call, email or stop in and we'll be happy to provide a no-obligation quote.

Always "Working to Serve YOU Better."

Main Steet, Odessa, NY Telephone 607-594-3335


Click on the ad above to visit the Visions Credit Union web site -- you deserve a financial partner that has your best interest in mind!


The Odessa File's
Primary Pages


Wine & Tourism

For your convenience, we have installed the link below to make donations to this website easier. Now you can utilize your PayPal account or your credit card.


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The Great Escape
Ice Cream Parlor

221 S. Franklin St.,
Watkins Glen

Summer hours:
(Memorial Day-Labor Day)
11 a.m.-10 p.m.
Fall hours: 12-9 p.m.

--Vegan Coconut
& Soymilk-Base Ice Cream
--Fresh Gelato & Sorbet
--Homemade Hard Ice Cream
--Soft Custard

Saturday, June 17th
10 a.m.-1 p.m.
Decorate a Cake for Dad Event!

And we are now sponsoring the American Pride Ride on June 24. We are a donation collection point and will be vending on the 24th at the American Legion in Horseheads from 2:30-6:00 p.m. Wink 104.9 will be doing a live broadcast for us from 5-7 p.m. on Friday, June 23.

To visit our website, click here.

Odessa Wine
and Spirits

We are located on Main Street in Odessa, next to the Tompkins Trust Company branch.

Send us an email to to let us know what you would like us to have in stock.

Free wine tasting every Friday.


SCT Computers

Apple Certified Technicians
Microsoft Certified Systems Engineers
A+ Certified Technicians

Visit us at 306 N. Franklin St., Watkins Glen, 607-535-2495

Main St., Penn Yan
(315) 694-7399



Your authorized FedEx ship center
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Sat. 10-2 (no pickups)
306 N. Franklin Street
Watkins Glen NY 14891

Dealer/collector looking to buy groups of pre-1970 paper memorabilia: cards, magazines, posters, programs etc. Call Charlie Haeffner at 742-2772.

Click on the ad below to go to the United Way of Schuyler County website.


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Curly's Restaurant is a page sponsor -- of our People Page. People.

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4 Novels by the editor

Island Nights

Excerpt here.

The Islander

The entire novel:

Prelude-Chapter 4

Chapters 5-13

Chapters 14-21

Chapters 22-29

Chapters 30-36

Chapters 37-44.

Cabins in the Mist

Excerpt here

The Maiden of Mackinac

Excerpts Maiden

and here and here. 







Click on the ad below to go to the Cancer Center website.

Author Cynthia Neale's books were on display, along with a vintage hat reflecting the period she writes about.


Neale gives reading, touts her latest novel

Novelist Cynthia Neale, formerly of this area but now living in New Hampshire, was on hand Monday evening in Montour Falls for a reading from her latest book, "The Irish Milliner," part of her series about Norah McCabe, an Irish immigrant in 19th century America. The novel -- available for sale at the reading -- deals with Norah as a young widow during the Civil War, and features a meeting with Abraham Lincoln.

Left: Author Cynthia Neale

To learn more about Neale's books, visit


A column by State Senator Tom O'Mara

New York State Senator Tom O'Mara provides us with a weekly column from Albany. This week: "A new crop on the rise in New York." Column.

Left: State Sen. Tom O'Mara


WGHS says farewell to its Class of 2017

The Watkins Glen High School Class of 2017 graduated Saturday in a Commencement ceremony in the school auditorium. A total of 78 seniors received their diplomas. Graduation.

Right: Phebe Wickham of the WGHS Class of 2017.

The Watkins Glen High School Alumni Association honored its four $1,500 WGHS scholarship recipients at Saturday's annual banquet. From left, they are Liz Mason, Rong Hang Lin, Max Schimizzi and Brienna Solomon.


Alumni Association holds its annual banquet

The Watkins Glen High School Alumni Association held its annual banquet Saturday evening at the Watkins Glen Community Center -- an event that drew more than 200 people. Honored as a Distinguished Alumnus was Larry Field (right) of the Class of 1952, who served for more than 20 years in the Air Force, retiring in 1978 with the rank of Lt. Colonel. He flew 5000 hours, including 1000 in support of the Vietnam War. He flew 210 combat missions, and earned seven air medals. Also honored was the late Frieda Scholtisek, Class of 1939, a fashion model who graced the covers of numerous magazines, including Life (May 8, 1944). She worked under the name of Lynn Davis, and appeared in a number of films, including one called "Baby Sitter's Jitters" with The Three Stooges. She later returned to Watkins Glen and worked part-time in the school business office. Few knew of her successes.

Photo: Distinguished Alum Larry Field.

Frieda Scholtisek, aka Lynn Davis, in "Baby Sitter's Jitters" with Stooges Moe Howard (back) and Larry Fine.

Click on the ad below for more information

Dealer/collector looking to buy groups of pre-1970 paper memorabilia: cards, magazines, posters, programs etc. Call Charlie Haeffner at 742-2772.




And inside

--Odessa-Montour High School presents a host of awards at an assembly in the school auditorium on June 5th. Schools.

--Schuyler County man convicted on meth sale charges. Government.

Part 1 of "Schuyler County and Me," reprised, Click here.
For Part 2, click here.
For Part 3, click here .
For Part 4, click here.
For Part 5, click here.

The Editor's


Death Notices on the Obituary Page.

Bernard VanSkiver, 89, of Horseheads.
Edna Rita Painter, 78.
Abby Gail (Lunn) McFall-Schenck, 82, of Watkins Glen.
Thalia R. Harrington, 96, formerly of Montour Falls.
Elwyn L. Blank of Burdett
Linda Marie (Masin) Williammee, 80, of Montour Falls.
Colin Dennis O'Neil, 27, of Odessa.
Shirley Alice Bergen, 74, of Odessa.
William F. Church, 74, of Montour Falls.
Annalise Buckley, 5, of Newfield

(For earlier Vedder & Scott obituaries, click here.)


Now available on Kindle: The Maiden of Mackinac

This story -- which spans 700 years and ranges from our region to Northern Michigan -- tells of a quest for the truth behind a legend ... the legend of a Native American maiden reputed to be centuries old. It was written by Charlie Haeffner, and is available now on Kindle at To see the ad, click here.

Left: Cover art by Jon Haeffner


Stunning, times five ...

The editor reviews the amazing Top Drawer 24 celebration and five stunning offshoots from it. Column.


Anyone caring to advertise may contact the publisher, Charlie Haeffner, at for information and rates.

For other recent Schuyler County news, click here.

Editor's Note

For those familiar with Bonnie Seeley, retired Odessa-Montour teacher and, in past years, a frequent columnist on this website, she wants you to know she would appreciate cards and letters as she battles ill health and undergoes physical therapy.

Bonnie is currently at Elderwood, a rehabilitation facility. It is located at 37 N. Chemung St., Waverly, NY 14892.

Please. Drop her a line.


Odessa-Montour Class of 2017 graduates

The Odessa-Montour High School Class of 2017 graduated Friday night when its 42 members were handed diplomas and sent out into the world to make their marks. Valedictorian was Emelia Paulisczak. Salutatorian was Madison Morse. The keynote speaker was 1993 O-M grad Charlie Wood, partner in a cyber security consulting firm based in Rochester. Graduation.

Photo at right: Graduates Sage Garrison and Kyle Frasier pose for photos after the commencement ceremony.


Hotel plan is off: 'Pieces didn't come together'

A plan to turn the top two floors of the old three-story Peele Building at 214 N. Franklin St. -- home on the ground floor of the Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce -- into an upscale, four-diamond boutique hotel "is off the table," according to building owner Jim Guild. "There are a few reasons why we gave up on the project," said Guild, who expressed concern at "a rumor going around that the Chamber was holding it up. That is untrue." It was really just a case where "all the pieces didn't come together," he said, adding that the Chamber "still has a long-term lease with me, which I am very happy for."

Photo: The building at 214 N. Franklin St. (File photo)


WGI is up again for 'Best NASCAR track'

Watkins Glen International, adjudged America's best NASCAR track in a USA Today poll two years ago, is among the contenders again in another poll this year. In early returns, it was leading. To find out more, click here.


Watkins-Montour Rotary Club has a busy day

The club's weekly luncheon meeting saw two young women honored as Students of the Month, Paul Harris Fellow honors bestowed on a couple; a farewell talk from Swedish exchange student Angelika Friis (right) and a talk by Cooperative Extension executive director Phil Cherry on beekeeping. People.


The latest column from the Valicenti firm

The Elmira firm offers a look at one of its newsletter features -- a monthly column titled 'Bull and Bear Bulletin' -- along with a list of its services. Valicenti.

Take the Senior Survey

The Council on Alcoholism & Addictions of the Finger Lakes is conducting an anonymous and confidential survey through July regarding "the quality of a healthy life." Filling out the survey, the CAA says, "will help us to determine if there are issues affecting our friends and neighbors."

To reach the survey, click here.

Click the ad below to reach the Hazlitt 1852 website.

Click here to reach the Hazlitt 1852 Facebook page.

Present for the press conference at Clute Park were, from left, Jennifer Bertron of the Food Bank; Sue Larson; Mayor Sam Schimizzi; park director Michelle Hyde; Wendy Wirth; and Rob Cole, who directs food preparation for the program in the WGHS kitchen.


Summer Meals Awareness touted at gathering

The free summer meals program provided at summer recreation programs and elsewhere in Schuyler County was publicized Thursday as part of a Summer Meals Awareness Day proclaimed by Watkins Glen Mayor Sam Schimizzi. Members of the Schuyler County Chiild Hunger Task Force were present at the Clute Park Pavilion for the occasion. The summer program provides free meals for all kids and teens on Monday through Friday at the WGHS cafteteria from June 26-Aug. 17, at the Clute Park Pavilion from June 26-July 28, and at the Odessa-Montour cafeteria from July 10-Aug. 4, and at Reading Center's Paradise Park on Monday through Thursday from July 5-Aug. 3. Funding is mostly from the federal goverment. The task force includes a dozen partner organizations representing education, health, government and churches. Established in 2015, it battles child hunger in the county during the summer.

The Sheriff's Department says this car is being sought.


'Suspicious package' prompts hunt for car

The Schuyler County Sheriff's Department posted the picture above of a red car being sought by law enforcement "after a suspicious package was dropped off at the New York State Fire Academy in Montour Falls this morning (Thursday)." The building was reportedly evacuated and Route 14 near the Academy was temporarily closed off. The "package" was later identified as a metallic cooler, with a TV report noting that bomb experts determined by X-ray that it was empty. The red car reportedly had a male driver with a female passenger. Anyone with information was being asked to contact the Sheriff's Department dispatch center at 535-8222.


One-vehicle crash kills man in Town of Orange

An Elmira man died early Wednesday afternoon as the result of one-car accident on County Route 16 in the Town of Orange. The Schuyler County Sheriff's Department said the victim, Paul Wagner, 26, was a passenger in a delivery truck when the northbound vehicle left the road and struck a NYSEG pole. The truck driver, identified as a 23-year-old from Elmira, was taken to Corning Hospital, treated and relaesed. The investigation is continuing.

Interior and exterior views of the gorge, near the entrance.


State Park gorge: Construction, but popular

The Watkins Glen State Park entrance off Franklin Street is undergoing extensive renovation as part of a $6.5 million upgrade project, but access to the gorge stairs is still available by following a route between two fences that starts near the parking pay booth on the west side of the road. In the photos above, taken Wednesday and conceived by local photographer Liz Fraboni, the tunnel stairs (left) lead to the walking bridge from which the shot on the right was snapped. There was a continuous flow of visitors into and up through the gorge.


Schuyler Steps Out: One week left to go

The top contender maintained its lead in the seventh and next-to-last week of the 2017 Schuyler Steps Out free community walking competition, while the remaining 2nd through 11th teams all held their spots from the previous week. The defending champion Humane Society of Schuyler County leads after seven weeks with an average of 932,263 steps from 14 walkers. Grand Prix Fitness is 2nd with 747,053. The Watkins Glen High School/Library is third, and the Senka Agency fourth.


New pizzeria opens on Franklin Street

There is a new pizza outlet in Watkins Glen on North Franklin Street, across from the Village Hall. The Atlas Brick Oven Pizzeria offers sit-in and take-out meals, with seating on both the first and second floors. A bar is also located on the second floor. The restaurant opened last weekend, and was drawing a steady flow of new and curious customers on Wednesday.

Photo: The entrance to the Atlas Brick Oven Pizzeria on Franklin Street.


Looking to advertise on The Odessa File?

We are always looking for advertisers to help promote their businesses and, by extension, our region. For a list of Odessa File Ad rates, click here.

Anyone wishing to contribute to The Odessa File -- which is dependent on advertising and donations -- may do so through a Paypal link in the left column of this page or by sending a check to The Odessa File, P.O. Box 365, Odessa, NY 14869.


This week's deals at Famous Brands

We are carrying the weekly ad showcasing the latest deals available at Jim Guild's Famous Brands store on Franklin Street in downtown Watkins Glen. For a look, click here.

To reach the Famous Brands website, click here
or on the drawing above


Ben & Jerry's

The Ben & Jerry's store at 418 N. Franklin St. in Watkins Glen opened for business in April with a Free Cone Day -- which drew a large crowd. The store is open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

115 East Fourth Street, PO Box 30, Watkins Glen, NY 14891

Proudly Representing:

In order to visit the E.C. Cooper website, click here.
To visit the Erie and Niagara website, click here.

Patrick Hazlitt signs his letter of intent to attend the University at Buffalo, where he will continue his running career. He is flanked by his parents, Doug and Cheryl.


Hazlitt signs with the University at Buffalo

Watkins Glen High School graduating senior Patrick Hazlitt -- who won two Class C state running titles this year (as a member of the WGHS cross country team in the fall and then, on his own in the 800 Meter Run this spring) -- signed a letter of intent Monday to attend the University at Buffalo. He will continue his running career there while majoring in business. The signing ceremony was in the WGHS library.

Left: Hazlitt cuts a celebratory cake.


Watkins Glen School Board: a summary

The Watkins Glen School Board Monday night accepted several retirements and bid farewell to Keith Caslin, right, who was at his final session after serving three years on the board. Said Caslin afterward: "I want to thank the Watkins Glen community for allowing me to serve. It was an honor helping to make it a better place. I enjoyed my time on the board." For a summary of the meeting, click here.


Site lists Glen among top 12 vacation stops

Watkins Glen has made another desirable list: one as a Destination Vacation: Top 12 Places to Bring the Family. The list was compiled by, which said it "chose places near national parks, locations on the shores of lakes, and even a town in the middle of the Pacific Ocean" (Hanalei Town, on Kaua'i, Hawaii). In including Watkins Glen, the website points to the village's lake, its gorge, and its reputation as "a world famous raceway."

The U.S.S. Recovery sank just as it reached the finish line.


24th annual Cardboard Boat Regatta held

Forty boats made of cardboard, duct tape and paint competed Saturday in two-craft heats at the 24th annual Cardboard Boat Regatta at the Seneca Harbor Park marina in Watkins Glen. A large crowd was on hand, cheering on their favorites and those unfortunate enough to sink along the course. Features.

One of Saturday's acts under the main tent was Phil Banaszak (left) and City Fiddle, a group from Buffalo.


Annual Fiddlers Gathering held at Lakewood

The 28th annual Old Time Fiddlers Gathering and Folk Arts Festival concluded Sunday at Lakewood Vineyards north of Watkins Glen. The two-day event featured various artists under a main tent, a jam tent, workshops, and food trucks.

Photo in text: In the Jam Tent at the Fiddlers Gathering.


Area author holds book signing in Odessa

Author Molly Bilinski, a Watkins Glen High School graduate now living and working near Buffalo, was on hand Saturday morning at the Dutton Peterson Library in Odessa to sell and sign copies of her novel, Lady of Sherwood, about a female Robin Hood. Bilinski, who appeared at a similar session last month at the Watkins Glen Public Library, was also scheduled to sign her books Saturday afternoon at a Barnes and Noble store.

Photo in text: Molly Bilinski at the Odessa library.

The Seneca Harbor Pier was illuminated as night fell.


Annual Waterfront Fest features harbor lights

The 24th annual Waterfront Festival -- featuring an array of harbor lights, a food court, live music at three locations, and assorted vendors -- was held Friday evening, June 16 at Seneca Harbor Park in Watkins Glen. The festival was a prelude to Saturday's annual Cardboard Boat Regatta.

Left top: Among Friday's festival visitors: Judy Cherry.

Tru Bleu, of Ithaca, was among several musical groups on hand.


Looking to advertise on The Odessa File?

We are always looking for advertisers to help promote their businesses and, by extension, our region. For a list of Odessa File Ad rates, click here.

Anyone wishing to contribute to The Odessa File -- which is dependent on advertising and donations -- may do so through a Paypal link in the left column of this page or by sending a check to The Odessa File, P.O. Box 365, Odessa, NY 14869.

For other recent Schuyler County news, click here.

For other recent Schuyler County news, click here.

Want to e-mail this website? Just click below.


Visit Jerlando's Ristorante & Pizzeria

Three locations: in Watkins Glen, Horseheads and Montour Falls

Click here or on the photo at left to go to the Jerlando's website. There you will find information about all three locations, plus menus.

Left: The front of the recently renovated Jerlando's at Franklin and 4th Streets, Watkins Glen

To reach the Harbor Hotel website, click on the photo below

Watkins Glen Harbor Hotel

16 N. Franklin St.
Watkins Glen, NY 14891-1221
(607) 535-6116

For other recent Schuyler
County news, click here.


Looking to advertise on The Odessa File?

We are always looking for advertisers to help promote their businesses and, by extension, our region. For a list of Odessa File Ad rates, click here.

Anyone wishing to contribute to The Odessa File -- which is dependent on advertising and donations -- may do so through a Paypal link in the left column of this page or by sending a check to The Odessa File, P.O. Box 365, Odessa, NY 14869.

Harris Fellows: Heather Lodge, left, and Nancy Ruda were honored June 15 by the Watkins-Montour Rotary Club as Paul Harris Fellows, given to area residents who exhibit "service above self." Both women are involved in various endeavors in which they help people in need.


Rotary Club: Harris Fellows, and a farewell

The Watkins-Montour Rotary Club luncheon on June 15 saw a new member (Lindsay Wickham) join, a check presentation to Kate LaMoreaux for her Summer Swim program, two Harris Fellow presentations (see above), and a farewell speech by Japanese exchange student Moeko Oshima (right), who outlined her year as a student at Watkins Glen High School.

Some of her highlights: her arrival on Aug. 21, 2016 at Rochester Airport ("I was so excited and nervous"); her membership on the school swim team; her first American sandwich (at Glen Mountain Market, "so large I couldn't eat it all. Now I can."); dressing as a witch on Halloween; a Senior Trip to Washington, D.C.; a 3-day trip to New York City; "tons of presents on Christmas"; a chance to meet with her grandmother and sister when they visited Toronto; a Spring Break trip to North Carolina; the school's "amazing" prom; and the chance to get together with other exchange students in the region. One, O-M's Angelika Friis of Sweden, "I'm sure will be my lifetime friend."

"I love Watkins Glen so much," Moeko added. "This year is my treasure." She will return home in August after a bus trip around the country.

Among those at the Arc of Schuyler annual meeting were, from left: Harold J. Hoffmeier, Jr., who takes over as Board President from Mike Stamp; Jim Wilson, the organization's former executive director; and Willie Pittman, formerly of Schuyler County and now retired and living in Virginia. Pittman, a longtime supporter of The Arc, traveled north with his wife Brenda to attend the meeting and see old friends.


Arc holds annual session, taps board officers

The Arc of Schuyler board of directors has a new slate of officers, headed by Harold J. Hoffmeier, Jr., as President, succeeding Michael Stamp, who in turn had succeeded Hoffmeier five years ago and will now be vice president. The election came at The Arc's annual meeting and awards ceremony June 15th at the Harbor Hotel in Watkins Glen. Various recognitions were made, mostly relating to The Arc's renovation of its Canal Street home in Montour Falls, while a Direct Support Professional Excellence Award was presented to Beth Macri. The annual $1,000 Joanne S. Hayes Memorial Scholarship was presented to Destiny Decker, a senior at Bradford Central School who plans to attend Elmira College.

Photo: Outgoing board president Mike Stamp, right, with former Schuyler County Judge J.C. Argetsinger.


Report: Police descend on Beaver Dams

A number of police vehicles were present on Rt. 414 in Beaver Dams Thursday morning, June 15 with a search underway for a man who police at first believed had fired shots in a home before leaving on a bicycle, possibly armed with a long gun and a knife. Police in full tactical gear and holding rifles had set up a perimeter around the home, and a helicopter was overhead searching fields from above. But a State Police Special Operations Response Team that entered the residence in the afternoon found no evidence of a shooting. The investigation is continuing.


Pruitt memorial service attracts hundreds

The bleachers at the Watkins Glen High School football field overflowed June 11th as a service was held there in the memory of Ryan Pruitt, a standout student athlete who died six days earlier. Schools.

A thank you letter from the Pruitt family is on the Forum.

Left: The football scoreboard carried nothing but Ryan Pruitt's uniform number

From left: Senator Tom O'Mara, Travis Durfee, Zachary Burrows, Patrick Madaffari, James Jensen, Haley Dean, Ali LaMoreaux, Isabella Bond, David Armstrong, and Assemblyman Phil Palmesano.


Watkins Glen debate students visit Albany

Watkins Glen High School 9th graders studying debate visited the State Capitol recently to meet their state lawmakers, discuss a variety of ideas and issues, visit the state government complex, and watch live sessions of the Assembly and Senate. They were led by teacher Travis Durfee, and greeted by State Senator Tom O'Mara and Assemblyman Phil Palmesano, who said in a joint statement that the group's "insights and thoughtfulness were outstanding. It certainly leaves us hopeful that the next generation of leadership will benefit from their sense of civic responsibility."

Bonnie Scott, right, and daughter Keri visit with Scott McCray, left, and Del Bleiler in the Odessa Municipal Building.


Friends say goodbye
to the Scott family

Fred Scott, a lifelong area resident and long-time businessman, his wife, Bonnie, and their daughter, Keri, will soon be relocating to the Roanoke, Virginia area. A gathering was held June 11th in the community room of the Odessa Municipal Building to wish them the best as they move into this next chapter of their lives.

Left: Fred Scott visits with a well-wisher.


LCP's 'Cinderella' concludes 3-day run

The Lake Country Players' youth production of "Cinderella" was presented for its third and final time Sunday afternoon, June 11 in the Watkins Glen High School auditorium. The play, which opened Friday night, was directed by Kim Laursen and Kelsey Johnson, along with student director Trevor Keller. Features.

Left: Cheyenne Barrett as Cinderella

A member of the Canisteo-Greenwood High School marching band, one of several bands in the parade. (Parade photos here.)


Festival concludes; parade tops last day

The 61st Annual Montour Falls Fire Department Festival ended its 3-day run June 10th, after an hour-plus parade on Main Street in the village that featured two dozen fire departments, 10 bands and assorted antique cars and tractors, along with floats. The festival's evening entertainment was country music by Devon Franks. Parade photos here.

Left: This girl won a prize for popping some balloons.

Patrick Hazlitt celebrates with his family -- father Doug, mother Cheryl and sister Megan.


Hazlitt wins Division 2 State Championship

Watkins Glen High School senior Patrick Hazlitt won the Division 2 New York State Public High School Athletic Association championship in the 800 Meter Run on June 9 at the state tournament at Union-Endicott High School, setting a school record in the process. Hazlitt posted a time of 1:53.79, breaking his own school record of 1:54.88 set on May 12 at the Fast Times Invitational in Corning. He was fourth Friday overall, finishing behind only three Division 1, large-school runners. "What a great way to end the already phenomenal year he has had," said WGHS Athletic Director Rod Weeden.

  Declining an honor ... in honor of a friend

The monthly Watkins-Montour Rotary Club Student of the Month honor June 8th went to Watkins Glen High School senior Angel Hamm, but she declined it -- saying "if it is alright with all of you," she was dedicating it to classmate and friend Ryan Pruitt, who died Monday. She said she would be replacing the award plaque's word plate with one with Ryan's name on it, and passing the honor along to his parents. For her complete, remarkable speech, click here.

Left: Angel Hamm at Rotary


Schuyler Spring All-Stars and MVPs unveiled

Two high school track standouts share this year's Schuyler Spring MVP Award for record-setting performances. And we have The Odessa File's picks for All-Schuyler All-Star teams. Sports.


Top Drawer 24 honored at State Park ceremony

The 12th annual celebration of two-dozen student-athletes from 10 area school districts was held June 5 at the State Park pavilion. Honorees received medallions and certificates. Presented too: Watkins Glen and Odessa-Montour Athlete of the Year Awards, a Lifetime Achievement Award, and the annual Susan B. Haeffner Sportsmanship Award. Party.

Left: O-M's Nakiaha Robinson, winner of the Susan Award.


Schuyler 6th graders get in touch with nature

A total of 130 sixth graders from the Watkins Glen and Odessa-Montour school districts attend a daylong outdoor program designed to stimulate interaction with, and respect for, our natural surroundings. Field Day.

Left: Archery was among the day's activities.

Police blocked the northbound lane on Rt. 14 near Montour Falls Monday afternoon, June 5 because of flooding up the road.


Storm prompts flooding, road closures

Storms that moved through the area Monday afternoon, June 5 led to flooding and road closures in Schuyler County -- including Rt. 14 between Watkins Glen and Montour Falls, and portions of Rt. 414 above Watkins Glen. The Sheriff's Office said flooding also impacted several streets in Watkins.


Elliott closes with 91 at State Golf Tournament

Watkins Glen High School's Hanley Elliott shot a 91 Sunday, June 4 on the second and final day of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association Girls Golf Championships at the par-72 Bethpage Yellow course on Long Island. Elliott's total of 191 for the two days was third best on the Section IV team. Odessa-Montour's Gillian Clark followed her opening-round 94 with a 104 on Sunday for a 198 total. Alex Tomasso of Waverly led the Section IV squad with a 163 total, 20th on the leader board. The medalist was Lauren Peter of Section I, who shot a 4-under-par 140.

Photo: Hanley Elliott during Sunday's round. (Photo provided)

At the Live Like Liz race, from left: Gary Schmidt, who walked the 5K course; Travis Durfee, whose band provided music afterward; and Margaret Mary Amisano, one of Liz Amisano's sisters.


Live Like Liz 5K raises funds to fight cancer

The annual Live Like Liz 5K Walk/Run was held Sunday, June 4 at Watkins Glen High School and on the Catharine Valley Trail -- raising funds as it has for years in memory of Elizabeth Amisano and to raise awareness of ovarian cancer, the disease that took her life. Race awards were presented in various age categories.

Left: Overall male and female race winners Brandon Pike and Brooke Shaffer.

The barbecue meals were sold from this spot on Visions Federal Credit Union property in Watkins Glen.


Chicken barbecue sells out quickly at Glen

The annual Watkins-Montour Rotary Club Chicken BBQ -- whose proceeds will support local community projects and help provide charitable donations -- was held June 3 in Watkins Glen. The event, sponsored by and held at the Visions Federal Credit Union, saw the Rotarians sell all of their 225 half-chicken meals in about 85 minutes. Also raising funds: a bake sale.


WGHS distributes awards at evening assembly

Dozens of Watkins Glen High School students were presented academic and athletic awards during an evening assembly in the school auditorium. Schools.

Photo at right: Cambria Weeden receives an award from Principal Kai D'Alleva.

From left: Richard Franklin, Rachel Pyhtila and Ronald Havens


3 from Schuyler face meth manufacture charge

Three people were arrested June 1, charged with the Manufacture of Methamphetamine, 3rd Degree, a Class D felony, following an investigation by the Schuyler County Sheriff’s Office at 1619 County Route 15 in the Town of Catharine. The Sheriff's Office said Richard A. Franklin, 41, and Rachel J. Pyhtila, 19, both of Montour Falls, and Ronald H. Havens, 64, of Odessa allegedly possessed several items of laboratory equipment and chemicals used to manufacture meth. Officials said further charges are possible pending the results of laboratory testing. All three were arraigned in Town of Catharine Court and sent to jail in lieu of bail.

Two men found guilty in Schuyler sex case. Government.

At the signing in the WGHS Library, from right: WGHS girls basketball coach Alicia Learn; Amanda Pike's father, Wade; Amanda Pike; her mother, Tammy; and brother, Mitchell. (Photo by Don Romeo)


Pike signs to play at East Stroudsburg U.

Watkins Glen High School senior Amanda Pike, who led her varsity basketball team to a New York State, Class C championship this year, signed a Letter of Intent June 1st to play basketball at East Stroudsburg University in Pennsylvania, where she will pursue a career in Hotel, Tourism and Restaurant Management. Pike presented a short speech in the WGHS Library in which she thanked her coaches, parents, siblings, friends and fans, concluding: "Let's all celebrate together because we all share in today's event. But let's not settle on what we have accomplished. Let's make new goals for ourselves and go after them." She then signed the paperwork, admitting afterward: "My hands were shaking."

Left: Amanda Pike and a celebratory cake.

At the ribbon-cutting were, from left: Watkins Area Chamber of Commerce President Rebekah Carroll, County Administrator Tim O'Hearn, the Performing Arts Center's Mary Beth Wolf and Eric Hollenbeck, and Watkins Glen Mayor Sam Schimizzi.


Ribbon cut at Glen's Performing Arts Center

Eric Hollenbeck, whose Hollenbeck Film + Experience recently won a Schuyler County bid to operate and manage the Watkins Glen Performing Arts Center in the old Middle School, and his partner Mary Beth Wolf cut a ceremonial ribbon May 31 at the doors leading to the facility. Hollenbeck said he looks forward "to bringing more arts and culture to the community, and igniting economic development in the region." The Center is in the old school auditorium. Changes will include the construction of dressing rooms where the old school gym now stands behind the stage, as well as the installation of new lighting and a sound system.

Check out our Wine and Tourism page

We've updated our Wine and Tourism Page, with links to recent Chamber of Commerce blogs. Check it out here.

Want to contact us?

You can write to: P.O. Box 365, Odessa, NY 14869

You can call: (607) 594-3594

You can email:

For other recent Schuyler County news, click here.

And also:

Area schools' Honor Rolls are here.

Area historical photos can be found on History.

For full coverage of the 2013 Alice Trappler murder trial, you can click here.

For other recent Schuyler County news, click here.





Click here or on the ad above to reach the Schuyler County Partnership for Economic Development website


To reach the Seneca Physical Therapy website, click on the ad above.


The Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring a Wine & Tourism Page. To reach the page, click here. To reach the Chamber website, click on the ad above. To reach the Chamber's recent blog, click here.


Would you like to help reduce underage alcohol use and drugs in Schuyler County? Then the Schuyler County Coalition on Underage Drinking and Drugs is for you! We are looking for parents, students, concerned community members and professionals to join our cause in making Schuyler County a drug- free, safe environment for families and youth. We need you to help make this social change. Please visit our website here to find out how.

Still available: Tony Vickio's book, titled "Shifting Gears." You can order it on his website here.


Dealer/collector looking to buy groups of pre-1970 paper memorabilia: cards, magazines, posters, programs etc. Call Charlie Haeffner at 742-2772.

229 S. Catherine St., Montour Falls
(607) 210-6600

We also have a Business Card Page. Click here. 


Read The Stoneware of Havana, N.Y. and Its Makers
by Allen F. Sweet.

A history of the manufacturing of Stoneware in that village (Montour Falls) from 1850-1888. More than 100 color photos.

Available at O'Shaughnessy Antiques in Watkins Glen and at the Schuyler County Historical Society Museum.


My Wild Ride: The Untamed Life of a Girl with No Self-esteem, an autobiography by ex-Throughbred trainer Susan Bump -- who grew up in Montour Falls -- is now available in e-book formats at major retailers including


Click on the ad below to go to the Schuyler County Transit schedule.


The Elizabeth Amisano Ovarian Cancer Education Fund
Live Like Liz, Inc.
P.O. Box 434
Watkins Glen NY 14891


Contact us about our ad rates




A novel by Steve Piacente about a military cover-up, and about the ethical boundaries of journalism. For a closer look, click here.


The author, J.N. Brown, is a 2005 graduate of Odessa-Montour High School. He works at Corning Inc. To visit his website, click here.


An account of a daughter's eating disorder and her mother's seeming helplessness and desperation in the face of it -- and yet a story of hope, love and survival, and a lifeline to other parents dealing with obsessive behavior. $17.95 from


A self-help guide to understanding the role of emotions, this book offers a four-step path to emotional mastery and freedom. $15.95 from


We also have a Business Card Page. Click here. 


Yes, we're still seeking donations

Click here

Sponsors' Page

Check out our list of readers who have contributed to keeping this site going. Sponsors.

The number of visits to this site has been steadily growing -- about 20,000 a week -- as readers in all 50 states and dozens of countries check out what's happening in Schuyler County.

Statistics are from an online tracking service, DeepMetrix Live Stats.


We also have a Business Card Page. Click here.


An eternal message of lights, hope and faith

The week following Susan Haeffner's passing was fraught with signs -- most of them light-based, and one in the form of a vision. Here the editor relives those days in an effort to pass along a message of hope and faith. Message.

Above: The Aurora Borealis (From the Internet--as seen in Scandinavia)


Oh, the famous faces I've seen

The editor has been thinking about fame (a commodity foreign to him personally), and about the famous people he has encountered. Some thoughts on the subject. Famous.


The Sound and the Silence: A Memoir

Some things in life can mean a great deal -- can embody hope and dreams ... and memories. The sailboat is one such thing for the author. Silence.



Some sports stories and essays inside

Check out our sports related stories and essays, located at the bottom of the Sports Page.


Some special feature packages

From stories of life years ago along Steam Mill Road, to stories by the editor -- you can find them at the bottom of Features.



The editor's long search for some childhood icons

When he was a child, the editor let fear get the better of him while he was watching a pair of beloved TV heroes in peril. The scar from that experience lingered for decades. For a journey through what the editor's son calls "a weird obsession," click here.

Above: One of the heroes in question.


A cabin in the woods

The editor travels, figuratively, back in time to an old haunt, familiar faces and warm memories. Cabin.




© The Odessa File 2017
Charles Haeffner
P.O. Box 365
Odessa, New York 14869

(607) 594-3594