Column: Alone and abroad

Some stories deserve re-telling, so if I've already told this story forbear the repetition. It makes me forever sad to remember someone's unexpected kindness, someone's intervention in my life, maybe only through a brief encounter, directing me to another path. Teachers, Sunday school teachers, friends, family and sometimes complete strangers may stand out in our memories touching us during encounters they have long forgotten.

Our View: Upcoming events help keep community close

This Saturday, Sept 19, the villages of Minoa and Fayetteville will be hosting two separate community day celebrations that are free and open to the public.

In the Earth Column: The Long and Varied Career of Kudzu

Kudzu is a perennial vine native to China and eventually brought to Japan, Korea and southeast Asia. It was introduced to the US at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia in 1876. It was again featured at the New Orleans Exposition in 1883.

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FROM THE ASSEMBLY: Create a plan for your family

September is National Preparedness Month, part of an effort to help us better prepare for and respond to the potential hazards our communities may face. This year’s theme is, “Don’t Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today,” stressing the importance of creating a plan to keep you and your family safe in the event of a disaster. Emergencies can arise in an instant, and while we often can’t prevent them, taking proper precautions can help limit their impact.

The Book Beat: For your book club

Labor Day has passed, marking the return of fall, the back to school march and perhaps the resumption of your book discussion group. If you’re looking for your club’s next great read, consider this list (the first of two) of recent, recommended titles that have hit critics’ and readers’ radars of what to read next.

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Volunteer of the Month: September 2015

Jack Edgerton – Upstate Cancer Center and Upstate University Hospital

One of the benefits of writing this column has been getting to know the people who were chosen to be the Eagle Bulletin Volunteer of the Month. I knew some of these people before hand, but learned so much more about them after the interview for the column. This is certainly true about Jack Edgerton, the Eagle Bulletin September Volunteer of the Month.

Column: Purple Loosestrife -- Pretty, but invasive

‘Tis late summer, and our highways and byways and wetlands are rimmed with purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria). This showy wildflower is actually an invasive species that threatens native flora and fauna in our wetlands.

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FROM THE ASSEMBLY: Improvements to the state fair will boost our local economy

For over a century, the state fair has had tremendous success in attracting visitors from all over the country to Central New York. This year was no exception. Recently, I joined state leaders as we announced plans to build on the fair’s success and economic impact by making it a world-class destination for conventions and other events all year-round.

Column: FAFSA changes – Evening the playing field

Effective 2016-17, the federal government will no longer require students applying for financial aid to list all colleges to which they are applying on their FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid).

Column: Who can see the elephant in the room?

The phrase, “the elephant in the room,” or sometimes it's an “800-pound gorilla in the room,” is overused, but it is a metaphor I adore. The concept of a huge, weighty presence in the room, without anyone who will acknowledge it, describes a behavior that is all too common in contemporary time. Political correctness, or a fear of offending someone, probably explains many occurrences of the invisible elephant our contemporary rooms and offices.

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FROM THE ASSEMBLY: As school starts, remember to be safe on the roads

Summer vacation is winding down, and parents are gathering supplies and preparing to send their children back to the classroom for another productive year. Very soon, our communities and our morning commutes will be buzzing with buses filled with children on their way to and from school. It’s an exciting time, but it’s also an opportunity for all of us to think about safety. Below are some tips and reminders that can help ensure a safe and happy back-to-school season.

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EDITORIAL: Easing into the back-to-school routine

Getting back into the swing of the school year can be quite an adjustment for parents and children alike. Luckily, we have a few tips on how to ease your family into the back-to-school routine.

Column: Aftermath of a high school reunion

Quick research gives no clues as to when the whole idea of class reunions began. The only historical reference found is that they may have begun (in the U.S., at least), sometime after the Civil War, and that is for Princeton University.

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FROM THE ASSEMBLY: Women’s Equality Day is Aug. 26

In 1852, activists gathered in Syracuse to fight for equality at the third national Women’s Rights Convention. New York has remained at the forefront of the women’s rights movement ever since, but, despite significant gains, many women still lack full equality. On Aug. 26, I hope you’ll join me in observing Women’s Equality Day, which reminds us not only of the strides we have taken in securing full and equal rights for women but also of the importance of continuing the fight.

Column: Wither our water?

Abundant, plentiful fresh water is a blessing found in Central New York. Supplied with lakes — large, medium and small — rivers, streams and even canals, we have little to complain about when it comes to our water.