University Hill to downtown Syracuse. "The purpose is to accommodate all types of travel," said Steve Kearny, City Planner.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
University Hill to downtown Syracuse. "The purpose is to accommodate all types of travel," said Steve Kearny, City Planner.
Race Director Richard Nastasi has seen growth in participation in this event over the years because local elementary schools are pushing their kids to get fit. "We're now in the computer age and the computer games where you sit and you sit and you don't do anything physical, said Nastasi, Race Director. And I think it is important to encourage kids to get involved in athletic types of activities."
There were around 700 entrants in the boys and girls mile runs combined. The Swamp Rat Runs included a 5k followed by a 10k race. Many parents bring their kids to events like this to keep them active. "Running is an athletic activity and it helps them in terms of the physical fitness," said Nastasi.
All mile runners were given souvenir ribbons to show they competed in the races, but only the top finishers received awards and for some, crossing the finish line was just not good enough. "You gotta run smart for the first couple of mile, so you can ruin stupid, said Chris Raulli. Kids are mainly encourage to enter the race, but there is no age limit, making it an enjoyable day for anyone looking for a little fun in the sun, exercise or friendly competition.
Davis had received a lot of negative feedback but she is not letting that stop her from achieving her dream. "The type of life I come from, people don't do much with themselves said Davis. I want to show my little brothers that you can do something with you life. That its okay to dream."
Monday, June 22, 2009
SYRACUSE- Construction can be seen in Syracuse at many locations. While that might frustrate drivers, there's no way to get around it.
The only good news commuters can hear is some of the projects are scheduled to be completed on time or even early. For example, constrcution foreman Joseph Lang was asked about the progress made on a steam pipe relocation on Comstock Avenue.
"It's due to be completed, 100% complete, by August 7th, but we expect to be completed two weeks early," Lang said.
However, the major state funded projects will take more time.
"In Central New York, we have a very compressed construction season when all work can be done. So, weather dictates a lot of what we can do and when we can do it," said Michelle Clark of the State Department of Transportation.
Interstate 690 eastbound and the Interstate 81 south bound ramp are closed for resurfacing and should be opened the third week of July.
"Sometime after the first week of July we'll be resurfacing I-690 by Teall Avenue and 481. That'll be a project that's a heavily travelled stretch of highway," Clark said.
The New York Department of Transportation has regular updates on its website.
NCC reporter Leigh Paynter's package can be seen by clicking below.
Cooper receives sentence
SYRACUSE- Patti Cooper was sentenced to five years probation this morning at the Onondaga County Criminal Courthouse. She accepted a plea deal, avoiding the possibility of being convicted of murder and keeping her out of prison for life.
The body of a baby was found in a trash can in Onondaga Park in 1981. Cooper was charged with second-degree murder last year after police linked her to murder by DNA testing on cigarette butts taken from her trash.
However, with the plea deal, all DNA evidence is thrown out and only a mitochondria DNA test--which only proves Cooper's genealogy--they didn't have.
"We never hid from the fact that this case was weak," said prosecutor Rick Trunfio. "Evidence from the original case investigation had been inadvertently destroyed or discarded so we had no physical evidence."
Cooper has not admitted she did it or even that it was her baby. Still she took the deal.
"There is a possibility--like anything else--that you could lose," defense attorney Richard Priest said. "And, if you lose, you're going to go to jail for the rest of your life."
The defense didn't want to risk a lifetime sentence, so the 27 year case concludes today with a punishment for Cooper--but no jail time.
SYRACUSE- As the head Greenskeeper at Drumlins Golf Course, Peter McPartland knows the amount of work it takes to maintain a course.
"Usually we're out here by 6:00 AM, five o'clock on weekends and we work anywhere from eight to 12 hours a day," McPartland said.
According to McPartland, he mows about ten thousand yards of grass a day down to tiny millimeters depending on if he's cutting the rough or the fairway. This is the standard job day for the maintenance crew.
"We have everything from weed whackers and push mowers that most people would use on a lawn, to big unit fairway mowers that can cut down to fractions of an inch," said Matt Bednarski, an assistant to McPartland.
Most people would hate waking up before the sun rises every day, but maintenance worker Michael Frasher doesn't mind at all.
"I love being out here, you know what I mean?" said Frasher. "It's a challenge being out here and prepping a course."
At the end of the day, with new divots scattered across the course, the Greenskeeper and his maintenance staff know the next day starts pretty soon.
NCC sports reporter Mario Sacco's package can be seen by clicking below.
North Korea is declaring itself a "proud nuclear power" and will strike if provoked. Japan's Coast Guard says it has received notice from North Korea's maritime authority that ships will be banned off the North Korean coast starting Thursday because of "military exercises."
President Obama is telling Americans that his administration is "fully prepared" for any move Pyongyang might make. Obama says he won't reward "belligerence and provocation in the way that's been done in the past."
Meanwhile, a member of South Korean intelligence says a North Korean cargo ship possibly carrying banned weapons appears to be headed towards Myanmar.
New U.N. Security Council sanctions require member states to inspect vessels believed to contain prohibited goods. The sanctions are intended to punish North Korea for conducting a secret nuclear test last month
Thursday, June 18, 2009
Continental flight 61, en route from Brussels to Newark, landed safety around noon today at Newark International Airport, after the pilot died mid-flight.
The airline reported that the 60-year-old Newark-based pilot died of natural causes.
The crew only told passengers there was a medical emergency but many realized something bigger may have happened when fire trucks and medical personnel met the plane on the runway.
The airline said the pilot had 32 years of service with Continental.
Thousands of supporters of Mir Hossein Moussavi-Iran's top opposition presidential candidate-protested in silence today as they marched the streets wearing black.
Moussavi addressed the peaceful crowd of thousands, asking for a new vote in the election that was called in favor of presidential incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
The government called the election last Friday in Ahmadinejad's favor, a move that sparked violent protests.
In Washington D.C., Iranian-Americans also took to the streets. Angered by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, they protested his reception and recognition of Ahmadinejad as the Iranian president.
Secaucus, N.J.--The Washington Nationals selected pitcher Stephen Strasburg as first pick in Major League Baseball's Tuesday night amateur draft.
Strasburg's 102 mph fastball has attracted attention and baseball analysts consider him one of the most talented picks in amateur baseball right now.
So talented in fact that some are saying Strasburg might skip the minors and go straight to the majors.
This means Strasburg could potentially bypass pitching for the National's AAA affiliate, our own Syracuse Chiefs.
But as NCC sports reporter Ben Gellman found out, for now, nothing is for sure. Despite Strasburg's obvious talent, organizers, managers, and teammates are all skeptical of the possibility of that big move.
The Syracuse Polish Festival starts this Friday.
Festival-goers can expect to enjoy a full line-up of Polish entertainment: music, dancing, food, and artisans.
For more information and a full schedule of events call 315-687-1076, or visit http://www.polishscholarship.com/.
NCC Reporter Crystal Thune will have more on this story as preparations begin in Clinton Square later on today.
NCC Lifestyle Reporter Jessica Nahmias
Medieval combatants storm Syracuse city parks as they recreate the Renaissance.
Syracuse, N.Y.-- Members of this ancient association hail from a place that they call the Barony of Delftwood. In modern day terms, this means Syracuse and it's surrounding areas.
These people are part of a group called the SCA, short for the Society for Creative Anachronism, that aims to re-create European life before the 17th century. This means sword-play, fencing, archery and other, less violent, pursuits like theater and jewelry making.
The Syracuse SCA meets once a week with weapons in hand to practice combat techniques and incorporate a bit of the Middle Ages into their 21th century lives.
They even take on new names like Anastasie deLamoure and Olafr Thorvardarson to fit their ancient alter-egos.
Nearly 100 people belong to this particular SCA chapter but worldwide membership has grown to a whopping 26,000 since the society’s creation in 1968.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
"They were so fast to tear it down and you would think they would put something up," said Gloria Sage, Syracuse Neighbor in Favor of Historical Preservation.
Sage also said she feels the Ronald McDonald House could have been built in many other locations.
RMH Executive Director Beth Trunfio said last August that the project would take only ten months to a year to complete. Its opening was to coincide with the Children's Hospital opening at Upstate Medical. Children's Hospital is scheduled to open September 2009. But on eleven hundred East Genesee Street, there are still no signs of construction.
Common Councilor Patrick Hogan voted against historical designation but is confident that the council made the right decision.
The house needed a super majority vote of at least seven members to vote for the approval but the house had only six members vote in their favor.
"The progress was broken, " said Michael Stanton, President of the South East University Neighborhood Association. "The city has since gone back to amend the ordinance that allowed the super majority requirement for this to be saved and that won't happen again, but the damage has been done."
But almost a year after the lot was purchased and the house was destroyed only an empty lot sits at the corner of East Genesee and University Avenue.
N-C-C News Reporter Leigh Paynter has the story.
Syracuse, N.Y. - The economy is not only hurting families, it's also hurting food banks and pantries.
That can be troublesome, when you factor in that now is the time hurting families need food banks the most.
The Food Bank of Central New York reports a 12 percent increase in people seeking food assistance.
But, local pantries don't have to worry about running out of food.
"One of the things across the nation is you're seeing a lot of empty pantries, you're not seeing that here," says Beth Slater, from the Food Bank of Central New York.
That's because the federal government is stepping in through the Emergency Food Assistance Program.
Under this program, economic stimulus money can be designated for food banks and pantries.
The Food Bank of Central New York just received a shipment with 350,000 pounds of food.
That is roughly 275,000 meals worth of food. And, it is going to local pantries such as Catholic Charities and P.E.A.C.E., Inc.
Instead of turning away people, these pantries can serve them in their time of need.
"That's what kept me and my wife on my feet," says John Whittaker of Syracuse.
And, it's what kept food in their mouths.
NCC News' Mike Krafcik reports on local food pantries:
Syracuse, N.Y. - Community Colleges, such as Onondaga Community College, are becoming more popular among high school graduates uncertain about what they want to do in the future.
Over the past five years, the enrollment has increased from 8,000 students to 11,000 students (both figures are approximates).
One of the most attractive features of these 2-year institutions is that they are much less expensive than traditional, 4-year universities.
"The cost of coming here was a lot cheaper, you know, to test the waters if you are not sure what field you want to go into," says Michael McLean, an O.C.C student.
The annual tuition cost at O.C.C is less than $9,000.
It is possible to attend OCC for four years at this rate before one approaches the approximate annual tuition of Syracuse University.
Of course, it usually doesn't take four years to earn a degree from O.C.C.
"Typically it's two and a half [years]. Life gets in the way often, (for instance) if you're working," says Kathy Perry, Director of Admissions.
Mario Sacco heads out to Onondaga Community College:
Washington, D.C. - President Obama is expected to sign a memorandum in the Oval Office this afternoon, which gives some health care benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees.
It is unclear as to which benefits will be granted to the couples, however, it is not expected that the President will grant full health coverage.
This comes days after the Justice Department filed a brief supporting the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and appeared to equate gay-marriage with incest.
DOMA was signed into effect by President Bill Clinton in 1996. It effectively prevents the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriage.
The law defines marriage as "a legal union between one man and one woman as husband wife" and a spouse as "a person of the opposite sex who is a husband or a wife."
President Obama's expected memorandum signing also comes just over a week after the Supreme Court refused to hear a legal challenge to the Pentagon's "don't ask, don't tell" policy.
DeWitt, N.Y. - He made the varsity basketball team at Jamesville-Dewitt High School as a freshman.
Not only did he make the team, he averaged 20 points per game.
Not too shabby.
But 12 games into his sophomore season, Brandon Triche suffered a career-threatening setback.
He tore the Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) of his left knee.
It was a given his season was over.
"I felt devastated 'cuz everybody worked so hard for the season," says Triche.
The Red Rams wound up falling short of the state title that season.
Triche returned for his junior season and helped J-D win the 2008 New York Class A State Championship. The team went undefeated.
Even so, there were doubts as to whether or not Triche had fully healed.
The scouts backed off. His ability to play college ball was questioned.
But, that just meant one thing for Triche's senior season:
"I'm trying to go out with a bang try to do it as best as I can," he says.
And, that's exactly what he did. J-D won the state title again Triche's senior season. He averaged 22 points per game as well as 8 assists and 8 rebounds.
He was given two very prestigious awards: 1) Gatorade's New York Boys Basketball Player of the Year and 2) New York's Mr. Basketball.
This fall, Triche will be a member of the Syracuse University Men's Basketball team.
Somewhere, the college scouts that gave up on him are knee-deep in regret.....
NCC Sports' Sean Bell gives us a look at J-D hoops phenom (and future Orange) Brandon Triche:
Syracuse, N.Y. - We all sneeze. From little children to famous politicians, it happens to the best of us. Even animals, such as pandas, sneeze.
NCC News' Jocelyn Ehnstrom has been caught in the act as well
But, while everybody sneezes, we all sneeze in different ways.
While one can make the traditional "Ah-CHOO!" sound, other people have trademark facial expressions that are revealed when they are about to sneeze.
Some people sneeze into their hands, while others sneeze into one of their arms.
And there is debate as to which one of these two techniques spreads fewer germs and, thus, demonstrates better manners.
"I do not recommend that you sneeze into the hand ever," says Miesje Havens. Havens is the founder of The Refined School of Protocol and Etiquette in Syracuse.
She is a proponent of sneezing into one's arm (provided you are wearing sleeves at the time) as it is more sanitary in her opinion, especially when people are eating.
However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention still believes that one should sneeze into one's hands while using a tissue.
At least in this heated debate the CDC and Havens can agree on one thing: both recommend that you never shake someone's hand after sneezing.
That is, unless you have washed your hands........
NCC News reporter Haley Burton explores the sneezing debate below:
Syracuse, N.Y. - For Jean Negron the paintball addiction started innocently enough.
"A friend of mine, he got a little set up in his backyard. He just told me I should come there one time to play with him; and I did it; and ever since I've been hooked," says Negron.
Chris Barbay has been playing for a decade.
"I think I bought my first gun that Christmas and I've been playing ever since," says Barbay.
Both Negron and Barbay are members of the Boss Ballers, a paintball group that has been together "two, three years at least" according to Barbay.
It has grown from four members to eleven members over this time. This has allowed the group to enter two separate teams in the New York Paintball League.
Besides the excitement that paintball brings, the group also enjoys the friendships and camaraderie that come with playing together.
"We're a family," says Barbay (as a teammate jokingly strokes the top of his head).
A family that enjoys running around and shooting each other with paintballs.
Click below to view Vijeta Kadarmandalgi's story:
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- Westcott-area shop owners are angry. Angry that it took so long to find the teen who’s been “tagging” their walls.
“It takes a long time to draw this stuff and no one sees them...it's incredible,” said Ron DeLuca, owner of Abdo’s Grocery.
Angry about having to buy paint and hire painters to cover the “art” left on facades by spray-painter Jordan Wood, 19.
“It’s $110 for the gallon of paint and then I call someone in to paint the building,” said Dino Sentra, owner of Westcott Florists.
Wood, who has been arrested 28 times, was picked up by police yesterday. It was his sixth arrest of the year for graffiti.
But Monday morning, shopkeepers say, a bottle-collector, a familiar face around the Westcott neighborhood, placed a call to police to tell them he spotted the vandal in-the-act.
But shopkeepers say they are worried another arrest won’t stop the rogue artist from spraying again.
NCC News reporter Kate Sheehy has a report about the Westcott vandal.
FAYETTEVILLE, N.Y. -- At six this morning the polls opened. Four hours later only 40 ballots were cast. But the department says it expects more people to show up after work, to decide the fate of the Fayetteville Fire Department.
If the vote passes, the Fire Department will try to get federal stimulus money to expand and renovate the station. The cost is an estimated $6.45 million.
“Our quarters are very crammed. We have no room for future expansion if we were to add vehicles, add personnel.
Our storage is at a maximum,” lamented Fire Chief John Falgiatano. Only people who live in the Village of Fayetteville are eligible to vote, even though the Fire Department covers parts of Minoa and Manlius.
Each day the fire station responds to an average of nine calls. NCC News reporter Crystal Thune says the firefighters’ hard work does not go unnoticed by the people of Fayetteville.
“I have a scanner at home, so I hear every single call they go out on. And they are busy,” said May Becker, of Fayetteville. The polls close at nine tonight, and by the time a decision is reached, the busy firefighters themselves will have gone down the station’s poll, several times.
NCC News reporter Crystal Thune has a report on the vote:
From Singapore (above) to Oswego, Go-Kart racing is a popular fastime
OSWEGO, N.Y. -- On Sunday nights in Oswego beautiful beds of flowers bite the dust. Literally.
Surrounded by a go kart track, Galletta’s greenhouse moonlights as a place to put the pedal to the metal.
“Sometimes, people will come up and be looking at the plants and see a go kart track and be like, ‘Look at this thing!’” said Chris Stevens, co-founder of Galletta’s Go-Karts.
Stevens and his brother Matt started racing Go-Karts in the 1990s but after Oswego speedway drove them off its track last year, the brothers took matters into their own…feet.
Every Sunday night, Galletta’s plays host to Go-Kart races. The Stevens brothers don’t charge for track time, only rentals, and prefer keeping the Kart track a place for fun, friends and fast racing.
“We like it the way it is now. Although we always leave the door open to something bigger,” said Matt Stevens.
And though the races rev on, the owners say it’s not about winning, but about whipping around corners, and having fun.
“We don’t have trophies…nothing like that. None of us will ever drive Nascar or anything like that, probably, but we still have fun,” said Rusell Hockey a regular Galletta’s racer.
NCC News reporter Zachary James reports on a Sunday-night sport that takes place in Oswe-GO
The Silverbush family won the $35 million lotto
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- In economically turbulent times, people turn to chance to try to top their bank accounts.
Lottery sales are up $177 million in New York State from last year, a 5.1% increase, Scientific Games reported.
“They [lottery pots] grow a little in hard times when some people turn to them,” said Syracuse University Economics Professor John Yinger.
“A dollar and a dream. That’s it. That’s my philosophy with the numbers,” said Craig Davis, the owner of Seven Styles Store, the owner of a convenience store that is selling a lot of lotto tickets on South Salina.
While Davis hasn’t sold any big winning tickets lately, on the other side of town, Bob Fantacone, owner of Chase Cigar Store, sold the Silverbush family the $35 million ticket that had Syracuse in suspense.
The family came out publicly yesterday to claim their millions, a dream that many Central New Yorkers have.
“A week doesn't go by that we don’t have a thousand dollar winner, a couple of five hundred dollar winners, things like that on the instant tickets. We sell so many of them…that there have been a lot of winners,” said Fantacone.
In an economy where keeping a job feels like winning the lottery, a little luck, means a big win.
NCC News Reporter Nicky Byiliangiro reports on New York's thriving lotto
President Ahmadinejad's reelection has sparked massive protests
TEHRAN, Iran -- Iranian state media are reporting that a government-backed protest is filling the streets of downtown Tehran.
Protestors are demanding punishment for yesterday’s rioters.
Hundreds of thousands of people swarmed the city’s streets last night in protest against the results of the country’s recent federal elections, in which incumbent Mahmoud Ahmadinejad won.
Opponents of Ahmadinejad say the election was fixed and have demanded a recount.
The country’s official leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, who has the final say in all matters, is prepared to allow a limited recount of the election. Ahmadinejad’s fiercest opponent, Mir Hossein Mousavi, has asked for another round of elections, which the Ayatollah has not yet granted.
All journalists working for foreign media have been banned from covering the protests on the ground and foreign reporters who went to cover the elections last week are leaving as their visa’s are not being extended.
The Tombs, a Manhattan jail, played host to a Bar Mitzvah celebration in December
NEW YORK, N.Y. -- Chief Peter Curcio, a New York City corrections official, will retire after allowing an inmate to hold a Bar Mitzvah for his son at a Manhattan lockup called “The Tombs.”
About 60 guests attended the catered party that took place on December 30, 2008, in which a Orthodox singer performed.
Tuvia Stern, a convicted scam artist, was given permission by Curcio to host the Bar Mitzvah party and an engagement party in the jail for months later.
Stern is in jail for bail jumping and grand larceny.
Home of Sy and Keng Thongthip
BINGHAMTON, N.Y. -- A 71-year-old man and his 61-year-old wife are dead because of a domestic dispute, Binghamton police say.
Sy Thongthip, originally from Laos, shot his wife and then shot himself late Sunday night.
Police have not said what the dispute was about, but have said the couple had no history of domestic violence. The two lived with their two adult sons in a first-floor apartment in Binghamton.
Ghailani will appear in NYC Federal Court today
NEW YORK, N.Y. -- The Guantanamo detainee brought to the U.S. for trial on terrorism charges will appear in a New York City court today.
Ahmed Ghailani will appear in Manhattan federal court.
He is accused of conspiring in the bombing of two U.S. embassies in Africa in August 1998. Ghailani has pleaded not guilty to taking part in the bombings that killed 124 people.
A sketch of proposed Destiny USA
SYRACUSE, N.Y -- Attorneys representing the developer of Destiny USA, Robert Congel, will be in state Supreme Court today.
The developer is taking Citigroup to court because of the bank’s decision to suspend Destiny’s multimillion dollar loan. Congel claims Citigroup is retracting the loan because of the bank’s own financial problems.
Citigroup stopped advancing money, alleging the developer failed to use its own money or obtain additional financing to cover additional costs. So far, Citigroup has loaned the project around $85 million.
NCC News reporter Leigh Paterson is following the story. It will be updated here throughout the day.
20-month-old Imani Jennings was beaten to death in November 2008
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- The Syracuse woman accused of criminally negligent homicide in the death of her 20-month-old daughter was sentenced to 1 1/3 to 4 years in state prison.
County Judge William Walsh handed the sentence to 20-year-old Cherron Patterson, in court today, where she openly sobbed. Patterson’s boyfriend at the time of the toddler’s death, Anthony Weakfall Jr. is being charged as an adult in the second-degree murder of Imani Jennings. She died on November 21, 2008 from being severely beaten. While in custody Patterson gave birth to a child fathered by Weakfall.
A family court proceeding for parental rights and custody is pending.
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- The woman accused of criminally negligent homicide, in the death of her 20-month-old daughter, will be sentenced in Onondaga County Criminal Court today.
18-year-old Cherron Patterson faces up to four years in prison for failing to get medical attention for her daughter after her 16-year-old boyfriend, severely beat the toddler to death.
NCC News reporter Brendan Reisdorf will be at the courthouse and this story will be updated throughout the day.
Monday, June 15, 2009
The Store sold a winning ticket worth 35 millions dollars. The store found out it sold the winning ticket several weeks ago but the winner's name was announced today.
This is the fourth time his store has sold a winning ticket. Fantacone has owned this store for 26 years. This is the first time he sold a ticket worth millions.
"Selling the winning ticket puts you on the map," said Fantacone. Fantacone hopes his story will be viewed as a lucky store and will attract more people to his store.
Click on the video below to see more about the story from Kim Hrabovsky.
"When I started working 25 years ago I put these all in," said Margaro. "The enjoyment that people get is what I get out of it." The garden is around 85 years old and has over 4,000 different types of flowers in it. Margaro says thousands of people come each year just to smell the flowers.
"We don't mind to do the work because it is a beautiful sight," said Margaro. He is currently working on the final touches for the rose pedals.
Click on the video below to find out more from Vijeta Kadarmandalgi
Smoltz is trying to come back from a shoulder surgery which has kept him out for alomost a year. "I'm not going to lie its been very difficult," said Smoltz. "I don't even think I have been in the same city for more than four days over the last two months."
Smoltz is now with the Boston Red Sox and wants to prove to his old team, the Atlanta Braves, he still has the ability to pitch. The Braves offered Smoltz a contract in the offseason but Smoltz said the kind of offer was a sign the Braves wanted him to retire.
Smoltz says he will know when it is time to retire but the time has not yet come.
John Crisafulli has more about this story in the video below.
After taxes the family will get a little more than 14 millions dollars. The family of seven will split the money among the seven.
Abe and Celia Silverbush lived and worked in Syracuse all their lives. They plan to continue to work there regular jobs. Abe and Celia plan to buy a new house with the lottery money.
The Silverbushes have five children the oldest being 53 and the youngest is 37. They plan to put money away for their children's college tuition and they say they will do a little bit of shopping.
Learn more about the family by watching Jocelyn Ehnstrom's report below.