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Julie Cushine-Rigg

Stories by Julie

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Skaters get a lift

Jump harness donated to Clifton Park Ice Arena

The harness is one four within the Capital District. Other rinks set up with the harness are the Weibel Ice Rink in Saratoga, the YMCA rink in Delmar and the Knickerbacker Ice Arena in Troy. The rig was donated by the Albany Figure Skating Club.

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Village hosts cinema spectacle

Ballston Spa Film Fest takes over

Thanks to Defabio's vision, the Ballston Spa Film Festival is entering its fifth year and going strong. The event, which is set for Friday and Saturday, Aug. 3 and 4, this year, remains free. A total of 39 films made by both local and international filmmakers, with an emphasis on films made by students, will be shown and juried over the two days. One winner for each category including best picture and best sound will be chosen. Screenings will be in Wiswall Park and at the Ballston Spa High School Auditorium. Screenings will start at 6:45 p.m. both evenings and are all family friendly.

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Kids settle in to summer roles

Round Lake Auditorium again hosts camp for young actors

On Friday and Saturday, Aug. 3 and 4, productions of “Honk! Jr.” (a musical version of "The Ugly Duckling") and “The AristoCats Kids” are set to be performed by the youth drama group Summer Stars and Carpe Diem Productions at the Round Lake Auditorium.

Fire displaces dozens

An early morning fire on Friday, July 20, at Bishop Hubbard Apartments at 54 Katherine Drive, Halfmoon prompted residents to flee thebuilding as fire companies battled a fire that is believed to have startedabove an electrical room in an attic space.

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Skye’s the limit for giving

Clifton Park 11-year-old recognized for fundraising efforts

Most 11-year-olds learn money management by saving and buying things for themselves, but not Skye Zagorski of Clifton Park. She spends it on people she doesn’t even know.

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‘Life is good’

BHBL teacher and Guilderland resident remembered as fountain of positivity

Beloved teacher Richard Barton, who taught in Burnt Hills Ballston Lake’s Richard H. O’Rourke Middle School, passed away on July 16. To everybody he knew, Barton was a lover of life and always had a smile. He is pictured here with a card signed by over 700 middle school students.

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Sculpture finds its long-awaited home

A more than decade-long journey for a piece of the World Trade Center ended without fanfare Tuesday, July 24, as a memorial sculpture was at long last installed in the Spa City’s High Rock Park.

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Author hopes for Olympic-sized splash

Karen Board of Burnt Hills anticipated the arrival of the games and the hopes of young athletes a couple of years ago and has timed things just right to have her first book entitled “Splish! Splash! Dolphins and Kids Having Fun in Water” to debut this summer.

And then there were four

The newly redrawn district includes part of Saratoga, Washington and Rensselaer counties, as well as all of Columbia County, and now three challengers are looking to wrest control from incumbent Roy McDonald.

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Track opens gates early for family fun

Whether you call it the flat track or the Saratoga Race Course, one thing is for certain: it’s the place to be during the Spa City summer.

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This gala is off the bridle

The Community Action for Parents Teens and Interested Neighbors, or CAPTAIN for short, will again mark the opening of the track with a fundraising gala.

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Center looks to senior health

Last year, there were 36,815 people eligible for Medicare residing in Saratoga County. That makes for a sizable population of seniors who need something to do, and the Adult and Senior Center of Saratoga on Williams Street in Saratoga Springs is trying to fill that niche.

Farley to face newcomer Thorne

Republican Hugh Farley and Democrat Madelyn Thorne are set to face off in a contest for to represent the new 49th Senate District. Thorne kicked off her campaign on Sunday, July 1, at Proctor’s Theater.

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The farm, and more, comes to you at fair

The Saratoga County Fair is celebrating its 171st year, and has much to offer fairgoers. Everything from food and music to animal exhibits and dairy demonstrations will take place over the weeklong event at the fairgrounds in Ballston Spa — even sharks will make an appearance this year.

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Cool cars coming to café

Three years ago, Eran Wasserman set down some new roots for himself in scenic Charlton after living in Israel and Manhattan. He’s found country life to his liking — so much so that he’s finding a way to give back to the community through his business and a passion for cool cars.

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Gala paints the town white for Saratoga Bridges

Saratoga Bridges is over half a century old, having offered services and programs to the developmentally disabled since 1953. Today its mission is bigger than ever as it serves over 800 individuals and their families.

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Young dancer takes stage with the masters

Colonie boy secures role in NYC Ballet production at SPAC

Six-year-old John Zorbas of Colonie can’t wait until he’s big and strong enough to lift ballerinas high into the air – and he’s well on his way.

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New business catering to kids bounces on scene

Greg Hays was responsible for setting up battlefield communication systems for troops when he served in Iraq. Now, he’s no longer concerned with signals bouncing around, but rather keeping kids bouncing.

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Movement started From Scratch

The club is a network of growing knowledge about local food and its members are willing to share what they learn, offering food swaps (open to the public and free, donations accepted) and do-it-yourself classes held at various locations throughout the Capital District.

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Books go into OverDrive

Whether you prefer to read a book printed on paper or appearing on a screen can be a very personal decision. But thanks to OverDrive, a program within the Upper Hudson Library System, you can now find both at your local library.

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Dog days of summer can present dangers

Whether indoors or out, making sure dogs have access to plentyof drinking water and a spot in the shade or cool area is also very important. “If you do put a water bowl for them outside, make sure it’s nota metal one. It can heat up and get really hot,” said Peggy Frezon, a pet expertfor Guideposts magazine and writer for Be the Change for Animals. She advisesto use a plastic bowl for outside water and to change it frequently.

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Budgeting 101 in the Spa City

Who exactly is responsible for the Saratoga Springs City budget? How is the surplus tracked and spent? If you’ve ever wondered about how the Spa City handles its dollars and cents, you apparently aren’t alone.

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Keeping it simple

The boutique has been open since early May, but Rello decided to have a grand opening on Friday, June 22, and Saturday, June 23. Business so far has been “steady and good,” she said.

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Students learning a Lock

Through a few serendipitous happenings, dozens of Shenendehowa High School students wound up at an abandoned lock in the woods along the Old Erie Canal this spring.

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Jazz Fest turns 35

Summer is the perfect time to sit back and relax to the sounds of cool and soulful jazz. And the perfect opportunity will be at Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival to be held at SPAC on Saturday, June 30 and Sunday, July1.

McDonald faces primary challenge

McDonald was elected to the 43rd Senate District in 2008 after representing the 112th Assembly District since 2003. He was also the town supervisor of Wilton for 23 years and held the position of Chairman of the Saratoga County Board of Supervisors.

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Southern social trend hits points north

The Saratoga Paint and Sip Studio at 80 Henry Street is part art studio, part social scene, and has been open for about a month. Their grand opening was on Sat., June 16, and was host to nearly 100 painters.

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A place in the shade

There once stood an awning at the entrance to the Saratoga County Nursing Home, but Maplewood Manor has been without this simple structure since a storm destroyed it two years ago.

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State parks get involved in outdoor hide-and-seek activity

Eleven parks and historic sites are participating in the challenge and there are 44 caches to be found, along with drawings for prizes for anyone who finds 35 or more geocaches.

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Summer days with starry nights

Since 1877, the Fresh Air Fund’s Friendly Town Program has been giving children ages 8 to 18 the chance to get away from their urban surroundings. Every year, they pair thousands of children from disadvantaged communities in the five boroughs to host families in 13 states and parts of Canada.

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Boaters warned to avoid hitchhiking pests

You might think a clump of weeds gathered at the back of a boat after a day of fun and sun on a nearby lake is nothing remarkable. But there are plenty of folks who make targeting such hitchhikers their job.

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Group aims to revitalize arts area

Saratoga Springs might be known for its vibrant arts scene, but the Beekman Street corridor many local artists call home has undergone changes during the recession. Now, stakeholders are working to ensure a revitalization of the area continues.

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Top-Notch effort to keep camp open

A summer camp dedicated to girls and young women is guiding them through both. Camp Little Notch, located in Fort Ann, aims to equip campers from ages 7 to 17 with the ability to make good life choices through a host of programs held during July and August and led by Executive Director Ellen Tuzzolo.

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Cribs: Caribbean edition

It’s been more than two years since a 7.0 magnitude earthquake struck the Carribean nation of Haiti, and today most of her people lack even the most basic necessities. Perhaps most in need are women and children, specifically women who are pregnant and caring for young children.

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The wet nose of the law

They wear badges and they’re deputies – but if they apprehend you, chances are you’ll need stitches. On the other hand, if you’re lost and need help, you may discover how wet their noses are.

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Dairy the day away

Sunday, June 17 (also Father’s Day) marks Saratoga County’s 17th Annual Sundae on the Farm at Eildon Tweed Farm in Charlton from noon to 4 p.m. The free event generally draws more than 2,000 visitors from far and wide and highlights one of the greatest resources of the county: agriculture.

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Steps of support

An opportunity for everyone to support Community Hospice will be taking place on Saturday, June 16 at their 11th Walk for Hospice at the University at Albany.

The bulk of it

For seven years running, residents in Clifton Park have had bulk waste items picked up at their curbs at no cost. That waste will now be removed every two years, with the next pick-up scheduled for fall 2013. It will still be free.

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To market we go

Tuesday, June 5, marked the debut of the Malta Farmers Market – a weekly installment of locally produced foods, plants and craft items. Every Tuesday will now host more than 20 vendors on the lawn between the Malta Community Center and Just Meat & Deli on Route 9 from 3-6 p.m. through Oct. 30.

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A perfect birthday present for Greenfield Elementary

As presents go, the best are the ones that keep on giving, and that will certainly be the case at Greenfield Elementary in the Saratoga Springs Central School District as it embarks on designing its present to the school – a new playground in honor of the school turning 50 years old.

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All senses on deck

On Thursday, May 31, students at Ballston Spa’s High School were out and about during gym classes taking part in a three-day program called Smart Choices.

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Animal therapy? A horse, of course

The horses of Saratoga County are known mostly for racing, but there are some who go by another game – therapy.

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An uncommon summer

When summer rolls around, it might seem the like the number of activities for kids is endless. The Not So Common Kids Camp in Clifton Park however, is an experience that is far from common.

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A heart-starting effort

The Larry Virkler Memorial Defibrillator Fund may be based in Lowville where Virkler was a beloved member of that community, but his son Scott Virkler of Clifton Park has been bringing the mission to his home. His aim is to equip communities, especially sports organizations, with AEDs, or automated external defibrillators.

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Cutting for a cause

Scleroderma is often a progressive disease affecting connective tissues of the body that afflicts about 300,000 people across the U.S. Approximately the same number of people who have multiple sclerosis.

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No strings attached, only played

The Northeast String Orchestra in Clifton Park offers children who play string instruments opportunities to play in an ensamble, an option not always available elsewhere.

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Spa City Memorial Day Parade 2012 - with photo gallery!

In its current form, the Saratoga Memorial Day Parade has been around for at least twenty-five years, though it almost became history until late last week due to a lack of funds and participation.

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Sleepy town wakes for annual festivities

The rural Town of Charlton may not have as many events as neighboring towns, but when it does, it’s done right.

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Running with spirit

Lori Noel saw running as a way to stay in control of cancer, a way of “winning the battle,” and it served her well at last year’s Freihofer’s Run for Women, where she ran with her sister, Mary Lee Smaldone of Saratoga Springs.

Voters to decide on Spa City government change

Saratoga Springs voters will have a say on doing away with the city’s commission form of government come the November election.

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