The 9th Annual Christmas in the Forks celebration held on Dec. 7 was once again a huge success. All the events throughout the day were well attended and enjoyed by all.
The tree-lighting ceremony began promptly at 6 p.m. and was attended by approximately 350 people. Randy Douglas did his usual fantastic job as master of ceremonies, and Susan Richards did a great job leading all those attending in singing lots of great Christmas carols. Santa and Mrs. Claus arrived in a well-lit carriage driven by Lucky the horse, compliments of Merry Farm in Chazy. Miss Frosty Forks, Cindy Lou Who, the Grinch and Snoopy were joined this year by surprise guest, Gingerbread Man, who performed a very entertaining skit.
Chairwoman Helen Wirt Kennedy expresses her gratitude to all who assisted in any way to make this event so successful. Ornaments are still available to those wishing to have a family name or memorial tag for $10 each. To place an order, call Helen at 578-0865.
Plans are underway for the 10th annual event next year, and hopefully there will be a Christmas parade and fireworks following the tree-lighting. Fundraisers are being planned, and donations will be gratefully accepted to assist with the expense. Contact Helen for more information or to place a donation.
The annual toy drive for residents of the towns of Black Brook and Jay is coming to an end soon, and more donations are welcome. Drop any unwrapped toy at M&M Diner during hours of operation. Applications for those wishing to receive toys are available at the diner and must be returned by Dec. 15. For more information, contact Cindi Murphy at 647-8264.
The annual holiday meal basket drive for the towns of Black Brook and Jay is also underway. Holiday meal baskets consist of turkey, gravy, vegetables, stuffing, potatoes, dinner rolls and pie. To donate items, contact Kelly Murphy at 524-5806.
A free Christmas dinner featuring turkey and all the trimmings will be served from noon till 2 p.m. at the AuSable Forks Volunteer Fire Department. Friends of the Community are hosting this event, and they welcome everyone to attend and enjoy the delicious meal and fellowship.
The AuSable Forks Ambulance Service will host a blood drive at their station on Dec. 19 from 2:30 to 7 p.m. Everyone attending will be entered in the drawing for a door prize. Please give the gift of life.
The Ambulance Service is also preparing the holiday food baskets, which are presented to community residents in the towns of Black Brook and Jay whom they have served and feel will enjoy their holiday more with this basket. Anyone wishing to donate should stop by the ambulance station or contact a member of the organization for more information.
The Holiday Match Program at Stewart's will continue through Christmas Day. Stewart's will match all donations made from Thanksgiving through Christmas. Funds from all Stewart's stores will be combined and awarded to chosen organizations that have applied for the funds. Any nonprofit organization is eligible to apply. Five organizations in our community received funds last year. The AuSable Forks Free Library is holding an Adirondack Christmas basket raffle with tickets $1 each or 6 / $5. The raffle includes an Adirondack Life calender, moose cutting board designed by Sid Ward, packbasket arrangement, birch picture frame, sled tree ornament, Adirondack serving bowl, ceramic tree candy dish and Rockwell Kent "A Northern Christmas" notebook. The drawing will be held on Dec. 21.
The 37th Annual Riverside Bowling Tournament was held from Oct. 26 to Nov. 17. There were 70 teams participating in the men's division and 18 teams in the women's division.
In the men's division, North Bowl Pro Shop of Plattsburgh took first place with Bob Munson (728 scratch series), Mike Watts (721), John Munson (670), Chris Welch (638), and Joe Guido (633), with a total score of 3,390. Second place went to Chuckers of Plattsburgh, with Mike Watts (738), James Tierney (299-711), Adam Chapola (673), Joe Guido (601), and Danyle Rockwell (540), with a total of 3,332.
In the women's division, first place went to Spic and Span from Ticonderoga with Peggy Grossman (633 scratch series), Marie Gijanto (509), Lori McKee (444), Chris Nauman (438) and Tina Lauzon (359), with a total of a score of 2,872. Second place went to Handi Helpers of Plattsburgh with Geri LaBier (577), Ashley Howard (513), Jess Brown (497), Jan Arthur (391) and Courtney Downs (384), with a total of 2,845.
The $2 Club winners were: first place, Sue LaBier with 308; second place, James Tierney with 299; and third place, Mike Watts with 298. For high games, handicap included, first, second and third places went to Mike Watts with 795, 762 and 738. Congratulations to all the winners and great bowling. Mike Watts.
Birthdays this week: Dec. 9, O.B. Preston and Sam Jones celebrated; Dec. 10, Kay Coolige celebrated; Dec. 11, Wendy Williams gets best wishes; Dec. 12, Wayne Roberts, Andrew Bombard and Klohe Hozley all celebrated; Dec. 13, Jaycee Hart celebrates; Dec. 14, Joseph Gravelle and Tanya Godlewski celebrated; and Dec. 15, Sharon Pulsifer, Jari Snow-Thwaits and Emily Sims are our birthday girls.
Happy Anniversary wishes to Bill and Bonnie Hackett on Dec. 11.
Special thoughts and prayers for dearly departed members of our community: Dec. 10, Charles Betters (2001); Dec. 12, Laura Nichols and John Fetsko (2007); Dec. 14, Phillip Brousseau; and Dec. 15, Arlie Merrifield.
The Dioces of Albany Bishop William Love and St. James Episcopal Church in AuSable Forks announce the upcoming ordination of the Rev. Ana Georgescu, deacon, to the priesthood at 4 p.m. on Dec. 15 at St. James Church. The ceremony is open to all.
My condolences to the family of Gloria Muzzy, 84, who passed away at CVPH Medical Center in Plattsburgh. She was born on Aug. 29, 1929, the daughter of George and Addeline (Tender) Bushey. Calling hours were held on Dec. 4 at the Thwaits-Zaumetzer Funeral Home. A funeral service was held on Dec. 5 at the funeral home. Burial followed in Fairview cemetery. RIP, Gloria.
My condolences to the family of Gary Barber, 73, who passed away at his home in AuSable Forks on Nov. 24, 2013. He was born on Aug. 8, 1940, the son of the late Theodore and Rose (Sampica) Barber. There were no calling hours or funeral services. RIP, Gary.
The AuSable Forks Ambulance Service elected the following officers recently: Chief, Bill Minogue; first assistant, Brian Freeborn; and second assistant, Kevin Santo. A returning board member is Kevin Sheehan, and a new board member is Kelsey Benway. They join Max Thwaits, Keatie Hendrie and Brooke Sorrell on the board. Thanks to Eric Horstmyer for his time on the board and to Cliff Holzer and Meredith Torrance who served as assistants last term.
Special thoughts and prayers for ill and recovering members of our community: Luke Randy Garcia; Tim Snow, who will be undergoing surgery on Dec. 30; Sarah Tromblee; Muriel LaBombard; Carolyn Dagley; Cindy Thomas; Eunice Frenyea; Frank Lovely; Jim Bombard; John Bombard; Mabel Fredenburgh,; Maureen Lattrelle; Helen Drake; Helen McKernian; Peggy Sue Hart; Jari Snow-Thwaits; Rick Nolan; Debbie Spooner; Pauline Dumas; Karen Baker; Lynda Denton; John Santor; Bob Rondeau; Evie Dockum; Allison Crahan; Gabby Lincoln; Michaela Bushey; Carol (Bombard) Quigley; Laura (Joyal) Razzano; Rikki Kane; Joe Dubay Jr.; Walter Fournier Sr.; Terry Nollette; Colleen Otis Whisher; Marla Devito; and anyone I may have forgotten.
Till next time, have a great week and happy reading.