Tonawanda News

April 5, 2014

TUCKER: Yarn yields clicking needles

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The Tonawanda News

Tonawanda News — Congratulations to Eric DuVall, the News managing editor, who won “Best of CNHI” editorial contest for 2013. (CNHI is the parent company for the News.) Eric was named Columnist of the Year and we’re very proud of him.

More than 620 entries competed for newspaper, website and magazine of the year honors as well as public service journalism and six individual categories in two daily divisions and one non-daily division.

The judges selected the best based on the quality of reporting, writing, enterprise, initiative, editorials, photography, graphics, design, and print and digital presentation.

Some of you do not always agree with Eric’s editorial views, but that’s what makes his writing award-winning. He makes readers think, agree or disagree. In my editorial writing class in college, that was the number one premise: Make people think but be correct with your facts. And Eric does that. He’s a student of history and government and his conclusions are based on facts, not assumptions.

On top of that, he’s a true Sabres fan.

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Ever wonder what actually happens to the yarn that some of you have so generously dropped off at the News? When I dropped off the three bags and a box of yarn to Karen Armenia for her “Yarners,” she gave me the following statistics.

So far, the women have made and donated 175 hats, 135 scarves, 25 pairs of baby booties, 14 pairs of mittens, 15 baby blankets, 20 lap robes, 25 shawls and 30 pairs of slippers.

Remarkable! Karen said they had just about run out of yarn when your donations were delivered. So keep it coming. You can drop off yarn at the News and we’ll take if from here.

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Potholes are the bane of everyone’s existence it seems. But what seems even worse is the number of trees, mostly large, that are being taken down throughout the Twin Cities and Ken-Ton. Probably wouldn’t have bothered me too much before becoming a member of the New York Forest Owners Association, better known as NYFOA.

Trees combat the greenhouse effect, trees clean the air, trees provide oxygen, cool the city by up to 10 degrees by shading homes and streets, breaking up urban “heat islands” and releasing water vapor into the air through their leaves.

Trees also conserve energy, save water, prevent soil erosion, provide food, heal as studies have shown that patients with views of trees out their windows heal faster and with less complications.

Or how about trees mark the seasons, are teachers and playmates, provide a canopy and habitat for wildlife, block things like concrete walls or parking lots, provide wood and increase property values.

So think twice about cutting down a tree.

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Cardinal O’Hara High School Song Corps will perform “The Star Spangled Banner” at the beginning of the Cleveland Indians/Minnesota Twins game at Progressive Field at 1:05 p.m. Sunday. They will also be singing “God Bless America” before the seventh inning. “We’re so excited and grateful that Christopher and his friends will be able to partake in this wonderful opportunity,” Theresa Conlon, Christopher’s mom emailed.

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This month’s issue of the WNY Catholic magazine includes question and answer statements by Bishop Malone about the closing of parish schools including that an out of town company did the research on the schools.

Carolyn Gorski, who is working to keep St. Francis of Assisi School open, sent the bishop a reply. Here is some of her letter.

“So let me get this straight, Bishop Malone. You used a company not familiar with this area to do research about schools from this area. When this whole thing started back in September, the head of Catholic Education didn’t know there was a difference between the CITIES of Tonawanda, NORTH Tonawanda and the TOWN of Tonawanda. If she didn’t know the difference, did your research company?

“Based on this article, St. Francis closed due to the following: women of child bearing age, baptisms, religious education programs, current and projected enrollment trends and parish data on sacraments. Did the Diocese of Buffalo ever consider North Tonawanda when factoring this information, as many students come from North Tonawanda which does not have a Catholic school?

“If St. Francis School closes, our parish has to pay an educational assessment each month to the diocese to go towards other schools that are open. Our parish also has to take care of the empty buildings, adding another financial burden.

“Regarding your comment of, ‘only 1000 kids will be without a school, but there are 5300 empty seats in remaining Catholic schools.’ Are these seats in schools in this area? Now you announced that the diocese just hired a “STREAM” coordinator. You can say what you want, but it’s clear that the diocese knew what schools they wanted closed and all the data means nothing. Such a sad day for Catholic education.”

Keep fighting!

Contact Community News Editor Barbara Tucker at barbara.tucker@tonawanda-news.com or 693-1000 ext. 4110.