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Who was Rosamond Gifford?

Her eponymous foundation celebrates 60 years

The Gifford name is familiar to most residents of Onondaga County — the Rosamond Gifford Zoo, the Gifford Lecture Series and many buildings, meeting rooms and classrooms owe their existence to the Rosamond Gifford Foundation. This November, the Gifford Foundation will be celebrating its 60th year, marking more than a half century of charitable support of the wider Syracuse area community. The name lives on, but the person of Rosamond Gifford is less widely known.

Personal ‘Project’ — Director dedicates ‘Laramie Project’ to his late brother

theater review

In early-July, as Justin Polly prepared to direct “The Laramie Project” for CNY Playhouse, he learned that his troubled 26-year-old brother, Christian, had gone missing outside of the city where he lived and worked, Jackson Hole, Wyo. On Sept. 4 — a week before the play opened at Shoppingtown Mall — Christian’s decomposing body was found by construction workers at the base of Snow King Mountain. In his director’s note, Justin Polly likened his brother’s untimely death to that of Matthew Shepard, the 21-year-old murder victim who is the subject of the play.

Sept. 11 turned a journalism professor into a playwright; ‘The Guys’ opens Aug. 29 at ShoppingTown

Anne Nelson, the director of International Programs for the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University, had never written a play.

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Jazzing it up

Roger DeVore broadcasts ‘real, old-time jazz’ every week out of East Syracuse

Roger DeVore can remember hearing live jazz bands at his uncles' houses as well as many jazz records at his family’s home when he was just 5 years old, growing up in Ridgewood, New Jersey in the 1940s. His interest in the genre grew stronger as he got older, and he began visiting New York City nightclubs when he was as young as 16 to listen to the different jazz musicians who performed there.

Folk Strings back on the hill

Acoustic quartet stretches the definition of “folk” music

When they first got together in 1992, the founding members of Folk Strings realized that they had a lot in common.

Israel's ‘king of the blues’ to play at the JCC of Syracuse

Blues guitarist Lazer Lloyd will perform an intimate solo concert on Monday, Aug. 25 to focus on healing and inspiration for Israel, as part of a special dinner and music event at the Sam Pomeranz Jewish Community Center of Syracuse, 5655 Thompson Rd., DeWitt. The RSVP-only event will begin with a kosher meal at 5 p.m. and Lloyd will perform at 5:30 p.m. Seating will start promptly at 4:45 p.m.

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Sharkey’s to host country music festival for Clear Path for Veterans

Too often, veterans returning home from combat zones aren’t getting the support they need. That’s especially true if they suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), an often silent disability triggered by a traumatic event. Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares and severe anxiety, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event. While PTSD can happen to anyone who has experienced trauma, it’s particularly common in veterans; while it occurs in approximately 7 to 8 percent of the general population, 11 to 20 percent of Afghanistan or Iraq vets, 10 percent of Gulf War vets and 30 percent of Vietnam vets suffer from PTSD. In order to support these veterans, a group of volunteers has organized a benefit called the Victory for Vets Country Music Festival to take place Aug. 16 at Sharkey’s in Liverpool. The proceeds from the event will go to Clear Path for Veterans, a nonprofit based in Chittenango that provides support for returning veterans, including peer-to-peer support, classes, service dogs and more.

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Taste of Cazenovia to be held at Willow Bank Yacht Club

More sponsors, increased participants scheduled for this year’s annual event

The gourmand, the oenophile, the epicurean, the zymurgist — whatever the label for people who love good food and drink, they all will be happy on Sept. 9, when the annual Taste of Cazenovia event returns. This year, for the first time ever, the event will be held at the Willow Bank Yacht Club.

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Loren Barrigar and Mark Mazengarb to perform in Manlius Aug. 5

The Manlius United Methodist Church is once again bringing Loren Barrigar and Mark Mazengarb to the summer Concerts in the Park series. They will be performing at the Manlius Village Amphitheater at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 5.

Critical Link V-P leads septet Saturday at Northeast Jazz & Wine Festival

Dave Rice is co-owner of Critical Link, a prominent town of DeWitt electronics product development company on Brooklawn Parkway, but he’s also a talented saxophone player and bandleader. His group, Tradewind, which also features his daughter, Lauren, will be showcased at the 2014 Northeast Jazz & Wine Festival at 3 p.m. Saturday, July 26, in downtown Syracuse’s Clinton Square. Admission is free.

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Third annual Fay-Man Day of Races to be held July 27

Runners and “mudders” of all ages will soon take part in the third annual Fay-Man Day of Races, scheduled for Sunday, July 27 at Fayetteville-Manlius High School. The event, which is a fundraiser for the F-M All Sports Booster Club, offers competitors three different races; the Muddy Hornet Challenge, the 5k Race of Champions and the Mud Puppy Dash Fun Run for kids.

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Town of Manlius Recreation Department to put on ‘Les Misérables’

"Les Misérables," a critically acclaimed musical and a story of turmoil, love and courage in the darkest of times, has moved audiences around the world. Now, the musical will be performed at the Fayetteville-Manlius High School for community members and visitors by the town of Manlius Recreation Department. This year, for the first time in 12 years, Shawn Hebert, the town of Manlius’ musical director for more than 10 years, will take the stage for the first time as lead character, Jean Valjean.

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Catchy ‘Catch’

Imposter thriller makes for murky musical at CNY Playhouse

Based on a film which was based on a ghost-written autobiography by an admitted scam artist, “Catch Me If You Can” is a far cry from your usual feel-good musical. But the venturesome CNY Playhouse dives right in, doing its level best to wring some sense of the offbeat blend of tunes and trickery.

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No child left behind

Manlius author publishes book promoting awareness of changing family dynamics

During his more than 20 years of teaching in elementary schools in Brooklyn, Atlanta and Washington DC, Jason Galvez taught many different classes, several subjects and hundreds of students. And during his time working in Washington, DC, only one of his students came from a home with a mother and a father.

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Fayetteville teen to go to Costa Rican eco-adventure as part of Make A Wish program

Make-A-Wish Central New York announced its 1500th wish last week at the Fayetteville Jazz Concert. Fayetteville resident and Wish Kid Rebecca Rolnick, 17, found out she will be going on a Costa Rican eco-adventure in August.

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