The 37th-annual Strawberry Festival will be held next weekend in downtown Owego. The festival begins Friday night with the annual block party, which will include the Strawberry Shake 5K and the Strawberry Shortcake Kids’ Run. You can sign up for both events online at www.runsignup.com. The night will also include several music performances, a digital circus and fireworks. The main festival will take over the village Saturday with plenty of food and craft vendors, music, traveling performers, and other activities. Saturday also includes the annual parade at 10am, which will be announced by the WEBO Morning Show from the gazebo in Courthouse Square. Retiring Police Chief Karen Vinti has been named this year’s Grand Marshal. Festival Organizer Pat Hansen from the Hand of Man appeared on Friday’s WEBO Morning Show. You can hear the full interview below.
SUNY Broome held a ribbon-cutting event for their recently-renovated classroom spaces in the basement of the Tioga County Office Building yesterday. The college received $25,000 each from the Mildred Faulkner Truman Foundation and the SUNY Broome Foundation to modernize their satellite campus, which included the addition of a media room, new signage, and other classroom enhancements. The college began offering classes in Owego in 2003, and Tioga County Legislative Chair Martha Sauerbrey says the county has been happy to partner with SUNY Broome. The Fall Semester begins Aug. 28, and SUNY Broome will be offering seven classes in Owego. More information can be found online at sunybroome.edu/offcampus. A full video of the press conference and photos from the event are available on the WEBO Facebook Page.
Golfers from across the area teed it up this past Saturday to raise money to restore the Baker Fireman’s Fountain in Owego. It was the first of what the Owego Hose Team hopes will be an annual charity golf tournament to raise money to restore the Baker Fireman’s Fountain in the village’s Courthouse Square. Golfers from 65 teams with 260 people played the course at Tioga Golf Club on Saturday to support the nonprofit project. The cost for the restoration is estimated at $60,000. Repairs include cement and concrete replacement, repainting, plumbing, pump work and updated landscaping. The hose team recently received a $20,000 grant from the Mildred Faulkner Truman Foundation and $5,000 from the Fannie C. Hyde Charitable Trust for the project. All profits from the weekend golf tournament will support the project. The fountain was given to the village and its firefighters in 1914 by Frank M. Baker as a memorial to his son, George Hobart Baker, who was killed in an automobile accident. Both men were members and chief engineers of the Owego Fire Department. The fountain was last restored in 2000.
An Owego native and local business owner has announced his candidacy for Town Supervisor. Jonathan Marks announced his candidacy with the creation of a Facebook page – “Jonathan Marks for Owego Town Supervisor.” He will run on the Republican ticket, and plans to oppose incumbent Town Supervisor Don Castellucci in the September 12 Primary Election. Marks has spent the last 18 years as the owner of Hometown Auto in Apalachin and is also the President of the Tioga County Fair Board.
Someone who bought a Take 5 ticket in Owego has won the top prize. The New York Lottery says a ticket bought at the Tops Market had all five winning numbers from Tuesday’s drawing. The winning numbers were 6, 14, 15, 23, 28 and they are worth a $25,362 prize. The Lottery says the winning numbers were selected via quick pick. You can hear each day’s winning Take 5 numbers on the WEBO Morning Show.
It’s that time of the year again, as the Tioga Arts Council is preparing to “Yarn Bomb” the trees on the Tioga County Courthouse Square. Volunteers will work together to cover whole trees with brightly-colored yarn during this Friday’s “Art Walk.” Also Friday, the Arts Council will invite community members to “Make Your Mark” on the deck of Gateway Park. A student art exhibition will also be on display Friday at the Arts Council at 179 Front Street. Executive Director Christina DiStefano was a guest on today’s WEBO Morning Show. You can listen to the interview on the WEBO website and see more information about Friday’s events on the Arts Council’s website and Facebook page.
The Owego Police Department responded to three different people suffering drug overdoses last week in the village. It started Sunday, May 21, when officers were dispatched to Paige Street for a report of an 18-year-old overdosing on synthetic marijuana. The next day, OPD was dispatched to Church Street for reports of a 22-year-old female that had overdosed on a combination of heroin and methamphetamine. Finally, on Tuesday, May 23, police were dispatched to South Depot Street for a 22-year-old male who reportedly overdosed on heroin. All three overdose victims were transported to the hospital by Owego Emergency Squad. Their names are being withheld due to federal health privacy laws.
A historical plaque that had gone missing in Owego has been found and will be returned to the owner. The plaque honoring World War II Corporal Margaret Hastings went missing from its post on McMaster Street over the weekend. The marker was dedicated last year at the childhood home of Hastings, a woman who survived 47 days in a New Guinea jungle after a plane crash in 1941 that killed 21 people. The sign was found on Main Street and will be returned to the homeowner today by the Owego Police Department.