FULTON, NY – The newly organized group Fulton FYI held its first ever meeting on Thursday (July 9) in the Community Room at City Hall.
The group, organized by Jim Farfaglia, Alex Grimshaw and a number of other volunteer supporters, was formed to bring awareness to the good things happening in the Fulton community.
With similar goals as Fulton FYI, On the Porch Radio Hour emceed the live event and will have an edited podcast available for viewing on Saturday (July 11) morning.
The meeting included multiple community guest speakers presenting on a variety of subjects relevant to the Fulton community.
First, lifetime Fulton resident Tim Carroll spoke on behalf of Lake Neatahwanta and the dredging process.
Carroll gave a brief history of the lake including where and why the issues arose that led the lake to being unusable.
With a background in wetland ecology and biology, Carroll has been a part of the lake and the processes it has endured throughout history right up to and including the current dredging process.
Carroll briefly touched on the intentions of cleaning the lake where focus has shifted from restoring fishery to boating and to most recently, public health concerns.
Carroll said that dredging is set to continue in Fulton around July 15 and start in Granby at around the same time as well.
He also stressed that the overall goal is to establish a useful lake for recreational purposes which will in turn reap a variety of other benefits for the lake and the community.
“There’s a lot of work left to do,” said Carroll. “But I feel we have an obligation. It will be nice to have these amenities ready and available if developers come and the economy does turn. We have to give these people the opportunities to make the same memories that we all were able to make on the lake.”
Colleen O’Brien, avid walker, photographer and volunteer organizer of Fulton FYI, presented a slideshow of pictures from Ground Hog Lane, a trail road around Lake Neatahwanta, partnered with musical styling by Gina Holsopple.
Three students of G. Ray Bodley High School, graduates of the class of 2015, Grace Trepasso and Angie Kimbrell and current GRB senior Abbey Zych, presented on behalf of the GRB Recycling Program.
The students took a dual enrollment course entitled Global Environment through SUNY ESF and learned of the impacts of recycling throughout the world.
The students’ PowerPoint highlighted the reasons and results of recycling, broke down the program and how the group recycles for their school, showed statistics and outcomes from their success in recycling and emphasized their enthusiasm in reaching out to younger students in elementary schools within the district to teach about recycling.
Kelley Weaver, with Friends of Fulton Parks, quickly presented with three simple words.
“Rakes, ratchets, shovels,” she said. “If you have any of these, please bring them to Hulett Park on Friday and Saturday, July 17 and 18 to help us install new playground equipment.”
Hulett Park is located on Division Street and volunteers are welcome to show up anytime starting from 8 a.m. and to stay as long as they wish.
Jim Farfaglia spoke to the audience in regards to the development of the group.
“We just want to talk about the good things happening in Fulton. Our goal is to do a meeting like this once a season, so every three months. Our next event would be scheduled for early October and we are always looking for anyone who may want to present something going on in the community or know of anyone who is, and any volunteers that are looking to help put together the next event,” said Farfaglia.
Matthew Wood, of On the Porch Radio, concluded the meeting, saying “thank you everyone, our guests and speakers. I’m so glad you’re a part of our community. Coming tonight means you are involved, and we need people excited and invested in our community. We want to see those signs being hung back up that say: ‘City with a Future.’”
With similar concepts and goals, Farfaglia hopes to work with On the Porch Radio Hour for future events.
On the Porch Radio is a family business ran by Matthew Wood and his wife, Gina Holsopple, with help from their children, Abbi and Max Wood, and Lilly and Rueby Holsopple, as well as stage manager, Renee Monnet.
Wood, a Fulton native, connected with Holsopple, a national award winning singer/songwriter, while they were working with a county program for at-risk youth. As they talked more, they realized there was a lot happening locally that they were unaware of.
“A lot of the local stuff is easily overlooked, so we started On the Porch Radio in January of this year as a way to promote things that are happening locally,” said Wood.
The podcast is available weekly, being uploaded every Saturday morning to their website at www.ontheporch.weebly.com
Each week, the show is generally able to host at least one musical guest and at least one community guest.
“We have a huge range of guests,” added Wood. “We want to make sure we cover everything and everyone. We love meeting new people and making connections.”
As a whole, Farfaglia said he was pleased with Fulton FYI’s first event.
“I thought it went well. I’m very happy with the turnout tonight,” said Farfaglia.
Anyone interested in getting more information or looking to present at an upcoming event can contact Farfaglia at [email protected] or visit his website, www.jimfarfaglia.com