Cooperstown Crier - Your Source for Hometown News - Cooperstown, Baseball Hall of Fame

In These Otsego Hills

February 16, 2012

In These Otsego Hills: Pancakes, prognostication and potholes

We note that Christ Episcopal Church is once again sponsoring its annual Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper, featuring pancakes, bacon, sausage, applesauce and beverage.

This year it will be held on Feb.21 in the Parish House, 69 Fair Street, from 4:30 p.m. until 7 p.m. The suggested donation for the dinner is $8 for adults and $4 for children under 12. Proceeds from the supper will benefit the Christ Church Global Mission outreach. For more information, contact the church office at 547-9555.

We also want to mention, while on the subject of church suppers and such, that we partook of the First Baptist Church’s Super Sub Sale which was held on Super Bowl Sunday. It was held as a fundraiser for the First Baptist Church Youth Group’s trip to Haiti.

Interestingly enough, when we perused the flyer for the event, which appeared on our front porch, we realized we could have our sub delivered  to our door. What a deal! Weimmediately ordered up two subs, one for lunch before the game, and one for supper during the game.

Just before noon, the subs arrived on cue, thanks to a young gentleman who told us he was looking forward to the trip. We wished him well with the fundraising event and then proceeded to gobble down the roast beef sub which we found to be not only most delicious, but also most generous. During the Super Bowl we prepared soup to go with our ham sub, which was equally delicious and generous, only to discover that we had to save half of the sub for Monday as we simply could not eat it all. All in all, we greatly enjoyed our subs and certainly hope that if the church offers such a deal again, we will be able to partake of it then also.

And while we, being football fanatics, enjoy the Super Bowl, especially if it was a good game as it was  this year, we were somewhatsurprised to realize that somehow Super Bowl Sunday has been elevated to the level of “holiday.” We find ourselves wondering why, and when, this happened. It seems somewhat of a stretch to us. But if it gets us subs from the First Baptist Church, we think we will go along with it.

We are also somewhat bemused by the Feb. 2 groundhog’s spotting of his shadow and thus predicting six more weeks of winter. We can’t help wondering if he was predicting six more weeks of winter from Feb. 2 or six more weeks of winter from whenever it might seem that winter actually arrives this year. Thus far it seems we have but had small teases of winter weather that have left us, at least, waiting for the real thing. No doubt the answer to our musing will be known by April or maybe May.

However, we were not surprised to read in last week’s paper the village of Cooperstown  Board of Trustees isconsidering overriding the so called 2 percent property tax cap. In fact, such a possible decision came as no surprise to us. And after further investigation, we have learned that the village has the same convoluted rules for the property tax cap as does the school district, which makes it most difficult to figure out exactly how much the tax levy can actually increase.

And added to this, we have discovered, is the fact that if any governmental entity miscalculates and does not ultimately fall within the 2 percent allowance, there will be fines which will have to be paid to the state. And, since any such fines would have to be paid by the taxpayers, we find it most ironic that the state would then be hurting the very taxpayers they claim to be wanting to help. To say that we don’t understand it is a huge understatement.

Therefore, we were most amused to discover that while going through columns that we wrote in 1986, we came across this item in the April 30 column: In closing, in these particularly stressful times in the area of village finance, we pass on to those concerned with formulating a village budget for the next fiscal year a practice of William Cooper’s which appears to have been unique for the time and a real boon to the economic growth of the new village. Cooper allowed the settlers here to pay for their land on the installment plan. Now, this hardly seems new to us in these days of monthly payments, but in Cooper’s day such an idea was certainly revolutionary. Cooper also allowed the settlers to make these installment payments with community service or with goods instead of cash.

We hope, those who now guide the affairs of Cooper’s village will remember the good Judge’s practice as they ponder what appears to be a rather hefty tax increase. Some will be willing to pay the increase without much complaining.

For those who find the increase burdensome, might not a payment plan similar to Cooper’s work to the advantage of all? We are sure that many citizens, for their community service, would be willing to repair the nearest pothole by stuffing their village tax bill into said depression thereby solving two problems at once.

About a month later, on  May 28th, we added thispostscript: In closing we wish to thank Jack Nevile for an article he sent us from The Sun News in Myrtle Beach which relates to a somewhat unusual method used in Conway, South Carolina, for repairing the ubiquitous potholes. Each year, for the past four years, on “Pothole Saturday” it seems that residents and city officials divide into teams and roam the streets filling the potholes.

This year, 12 teams, with four members per team, filled 1,183 potholes. Last year, the pothole patchers filled 1,237 potholes which saved the city $6,100. Since we enjoyed the article we thought we would pass it on for what it’s worth.

PLEASE NOTE : Comments regarding this column may be made by mail at 105 Pioneer Street, Cooperstown, NY 13326, by telephone at 607-547-8124 or by e-mail at

Text Only
In These Otsego Hills
  • The cruelest month of all It has long been said that April is the cruelest month of all. However, given our recent winter, the cruelest month designation might well be open for debate this year.

    April 17, 2014

  • Sharing conspiracy theories on Main Having traversed the village a number of times now, we have come to the conclusion that there is very little reason to mention the current crop of potholes. It seems they are quite able to speak for themselves. In fact, they seem to do so loud and clear.

    April 10, 2014

  • Recovering with family and friends We must say we were somewhat overwhelmed by the telephone calls and emails that we received regarding last week's column. From what we were told it greatly brightened the day for a number of people. In fact, several of our callers told us they were going to cut it out and send it to friends around the country. And just as the column brightened the day for a number of our readers, their responses absolutely made our day. In fact, we are tempted to think it made not only our day, but our week, our month and perhaps even our year.

    April 3, 2014

  • Back to the present Much as we have enjoyed our recent trip through the archives of 1984, we fear we must return to 2014. If nothing else, we were reminded during our journey that the column today is not the column of 1984. But then, we suspect the greater Cooperstown community today is not the community of 1984. And while it is nice to reminisce about yesteryear, it is also important to recognize where we are today. And when we do that, we tend to focus on the one thing that has always made this column seem to work, namely the input of our readers.

    March 27, 2014

  • '84 carnival didn't go as planned This week we begin with one more of our favorite column items from 1984 concerning Winter Carnival which didn't go exactly as planned. We wrote:

    March 20, 2014

  • DAR column sends us down memory lane Of all the scripts we found in our cleaning of the basement, the one that intrigued us the most is one that we had completely forgotten we had written. It was done for a program we presented quite a while ago at a meeting of the Cooperstown DAR. As we recall, Lona Smith had asked us to talk about our experiences with writing this column. And since that could be a rather lengthy presentation, we decided to limit ourselves to talking about our first year of writing the column.

    March 13, 2014

  • Remembering a CCS vote that failed| We note that the next meeting of the Literary Discussion Group, sponsored by the Women's Club of Cooperstown, will be held on Thursday, March 27 at 2:30 p.m. at the Village of Cooperstown Library. Jane Anne Russell will lead a discussion on the book "North to the Orient" by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. The meeting is open to the public.

    March 6, 2014

  • Cookies make a better valentine than MRI We had originally thought that our entire Valentine's Day celebration would be a trip to Bassett healthcare to get a MRI of our lower back. Thus we were most pleasantly surprised when a friend dropped in on us with a bag of heart shaped, frosted sugar cookies for us.

    February 27, 2014

  • Swing and a miss on PumpkinFest We must admit that we are probably not as caught up in sports as some people are.

    February 20, 2014

  • Keeping busy as winter creeps From all that we hear, any number of people are sick of the winter weather. And, given what it has been, it is not difficult to understand why, especially if one is not particularly taken by winter weather in the first place. However, we do suspect that, unlike some years, the weather worked out well for Cooperstown's annual Winter Carnival. We must admit that we have not participated in the Winter Carnival for a number of years for the simple fact that it is held in the winter. And we are simply not devotees of the winter. But, should the decision ever be made, which we find highly unlikely, to hold the Winter Carnival in the spring or the fall, we might be more inclined to participate

    February 13, 2014