July 24, 2012

Where those yellow jackets are headed

I was curious about where the yellow jackets from our house were heading - what kind of science did we donate them to? So I asked Kevin Loope some questions, and I added some links to his answers: How long...

Posted by simon at 5:18 AM

July 20, 2012

Donating our yellow jackets to science

Every now and then living near a major research university provides some immediate advantages. Angelika noticed a growing nest of yellow jackets under the eaves of our house. It's been a few years since we had lots of them, but...

Posted by simon at 2:31 PM

December 20, 2011

RPM bankruptcy limits clawback

I've been slack, and there's a lot to catch up on at the Ithaca Journal. RPM Ecosystems didn't create the jobs promised in exchange for tax reductions, but bankruptcy means the tax money is gone. Dryden resident Audrey Terry will...

Posted by simon at 12:06 PM

September 4, 2011

How stable is the education business, anyway?

It's one of those days when I think One of Nine has an excellent point, something we need to prepare for....

Posted by simon at 8:10 AM

June 28, 2011

A very Dryden Honeybee Democracy

I'd heard about Tom Seeley's Honeybee Democracy from a wildly diverse array of places - the radio, friends, work, beekeeping lists, catalogs, and probably more. I'd been planning to buy it, but Angelika surprised me with it last week, borrowing...

Posted by simon at 5:23 PM

January 28, 2011

Varna Planning - current status

Update: new version of this story available. At both the Town Board and Planning Board meetings this week, Planning Director Dan Kwasnowski expressed concerns about the possible impact of large-scale development (likely Stephen Lucente's Varna II) on the Varna Master...

Posted by simon at 7:27 PM

February 19, 2009

A brief rant about Cornell architecture

[This isn't quite Dryden, but I suspect it's something a lot of people in Dryden have an opinion about.] It was very strange today to see the collapse of the Cornell hydraulics laboratory on the front page of the Ithaca...

Posted by simon at 7:54 PM

May 26, 2008


I said I'd take a break from covering the Journal, and then, of course, they started publishing lots of things that deserve highlighting. For Memorial Day, they remember WWII veteran Bud Hulslander and his work remembering veterans. In the Life...

Posted by simon at 1:52 PM

November 27, 2007

Cornell gas line changes

This morning's Journal includes Gary Stewart's report on Cornell's modifications to the gas line it will be building to connect its power plant to the pipeline that runs through Ellis Hollow. It sounds like it will be narrower and generally...

Posted by simon at 8:53 AM

October 8, 2007

Energy efficiency in West Dryden

I didn't manage to get out to the Green Buildings Tour this weekend, but fortunately the Journal has some coverage of one of the houses in Dryden, complete with photos of the straw-bale house under construction. (I reported on the...

Posted by simon at 12:52 PM

September 12, 2007

Community happenings

Cathy Wakeman's Dryden Town Talk emphasizes community events today. She starts with the work toward the Dryden Community Cafe, which will have a meeting tonight (and future Wednesday nights) at 7:00pm. She also notes: The Southworth Library book sale, which...

Posted by simon at 12:25 PM

April 28, 2007

Cornell t-GEIS study looks at roads

Back on the 18th of April, the Cornell Transportation-General Environmental Impact Study (t-GEIS) held an open house event much like the one they held in May. While the one in May started with a clean slate of maps, this one...

Posted by simon at 4:24 PM

April 18, 2007

What Cornell is up to

Well, it's not everything that Cornell is up to, but tonight's open house on the Cornell Transportation generic Environmental Impact Statement at the Best Western in East Hill Plaza might provide some idea of where and how they plan to...

Posted by simon at 8:13 AM

December 18, 2006

Influential student

This week's Dryden Courier leads with an article profiling Corey Earle, a Dryden High graduate just listed as a member of the "25 most influential Cornellians". Earle is president of the Glee Club, president of Quill and Dagger, and writer...

Posted by simon at 6:18 PM

August 17, 2006

Freeville farm Organic; Etna candidate Libertarian

It's been a while since I reported on the Dryden Courier, but it's time to get back into it. This week's cover has a picture of plants growing at Cornell's Freeville Organic Research Farm, which just received certification that it...

Posted by simon at 5:30 PM

July 25, 2006

Cornell Master Plan gets started

In East Hill News, Gary Stewart notes that a website on Cornell's master plan development is now available. The map image at the top of it stretches from downtown Ithaca to Varna and Mount Pleasant. While I doubt the image...

Posted by simon at 10:43 AM

May 25, 2006

How much land does Cornell own?

One of the interesting features of the County's presentation on Natural Features Focus Areas was the maps for their Education and Research sections in various areas. I'd always known that Cornell owned lots of land in the areas around Varna...

Posted by simon at 7:44 AM

May 6, 2006

Cornell t-GEIS event

I went to the Cornell transportation impact project meeting Wednesday night, hoping to get a better idea of what this joint project between Cornell University and the Town of Ithaca might mean for Dryden. (Dryden is participating, but isn't the...

Posted by simon at 9:13 AM

November 19, 2005

Etna bridge; Freeville dinner

This morning's Briefly in Tompkins notes an 8-ton weight restriction on the Etna Lane bridge over Fall Creek. They also list a free Thanksgiving Day dinner to be held at 1:00pm November 24th at the Freeville United Methodist Church, for...

Posted by simon at 9:08 AM

July 26, 2005

Dryden Elementary recognized for performance

There's lot of Dryden news today, starting with New York State's recognizing Dryden Elementary School as a Higher Performing/Gap Closing School for its work during the 2003-4 school year. The Cornell news for this week includes informaiton on Cornell's participation...

Posted by simon at 8:12 AM

June 30, 2005

Dryden school repairs, much more

Since it's all going to vanish in a week, it's probably a good idea to report what's been in the Ithaca Journal for the past few days. The most Dryden-specific story is one on the renovations in progress at the...

Posted by simon at 12:39 PM

June 13, 2005

Dairy Day, road repair

This morning's Ithaca Journal devotes a lot of ink to Cornell President Jeffrey Lehman's surprise resignation, but gets off campus long enough to take a look at Dairy Day, with an article and photos. Briefly in Tompkins highlights three arrests...

Posted by simon at 7:27 AM

May 28, 2005

Memorial Day parade

This morning's Ithaca Journal includes a listing for the Dryden Memorial Day parade, which will start at 10:30am Monday on Main Street in the Village of Dryden. There's also an article on Cornell and sustainability, which I found interesting in...

Posted by simon at 6:57 AM

May 25, 2005

Dryden 4th grader wins art award

Devontae Sims, a fourth-grade boy at Dryden Intermediate School, "was awarded Best Design honors by the National Education Association of New York in the kindergarten through fourth-grade division of the first ever Great Public Schools Art Contest," for a poster...

Posted by simon at 8:06 AM

April 30, 2005

Wind turbines stopped

This morning's Ithaca Journal reports that Cornell has decided to stop its study of putting wind turbines on Mount Pleasant, publishing a brief press release to that effect after notifying residents at a meeting Thursday night. According to Simeon Moss,...

Posted by simon at 8:28 AM

April 26, 2005

Wind farm discussion at April Town Board meeting

Now that I've finally finished what happened at the EMC meeting on the Cornell wind farm, I'd like to report what happened at the April Dryden Town Board meeting the next night. During citizen's privilege, Bill Openshaw read a prepared...

Posted by simon at 4:40 PM

April 25, 2005

Questioning Cornell about wind, Part 2

Continuing with the comments at the EMC meeting about Cornell's Mount Pleasant wind farm proposal, Mount Pleasant resident John Semmler asked Lanny Joyce, Manager of Engineering, Planning, and Energy Management in Cornell's Utilities Department about infrasonic noise, noise below the...

Posted by simon at 7:09 PM

April 23, 2005

Questioning Cornell about wind, Part 1

After Lanny Joyce, Manager of Engineering, Planning, and Energy Management in Cornell's Utilities Department, gave a presentation at the April 13th Tompkins County Environmental Management Council, it opened up to questions from the council and the public. Steve Nicholson, the...

Posted by simon at 12:47 PM

Iraq; lacrosse; school races

This week's Dryden Courier is packed with news about the town, on levels from local lacrosse to the county legislature to a protest at Congressman Boehlert's office to a Dryden dentist returning from Iraq. Once again, if you don't read...

Posted by simon at 8:43 AM

April 21, 2005

Cornell perspective on Mount Pleasant wind farm

Lanny Joyce, Manager of Engineering, Planning, and Energy Management in Cornell's Utilities Department and a member of the Kyoto Task Team, presented at the Tompkins County Environmental Management Council meeting last Wednesday after residents spoke at the beginning of the...

Posted by simon at 10:45 PM

April 19, 2005

Windmills generate controversy

Cornell's proposed windmills on Mount Pleasant, near the WHCU radio tower, encountered a lot of opposition last week. I missed the informational meeting at the Varna Community Center, so I went to the Environmental Management Council meeting last Wednesday instead....

Posted by simon at 7:06 PM

April 16, 2005

Cornell Plantations to hold Arbor Day event

Just on the western side of the Town of Dryden line, Cornell Plantations will be holding an Arbor Day event on April 30th: Tree lovers of all ages are invited to celebrate Arbor Day with Cornell Plantations. “Discovering Trees,” a...

Posted by simon at 8:32 AM

April 8, 2005

Dryden Red Hats photo; emergency services communication

This morning's Ithaca Journal has a picture of Dryden Dollies Red Hat Society member Sue Caldwell holding a newborn lamb at the Cornell Sheep Program. In county news, the Public Safety Committee approved a conceptual plan for the emergency services...

Posted by simon at 8:33 AM

April 7, 2005

Birds return to Dryden; ICSD middle school redistricting

The Ithaca Journal's editorial starts as "the raspy gee-gaw call of a male redwing blackbird echoed in a Dryden marsh," writing about the studies of local bird populations done by the Birdhouse Network, a project of the Cornell Lab of...

Posted by simon at 8:00 AM

March 28, 2005

A few arrests

The Ithaca Journal is mostly quiet on Dryden news today, but reports the arrests of two Dryden men, one for DWI in Groton and one for breaking windows in Ithaca. In news just outside the town, there's an article on...

Posted by simon at 8:03 AM

March 27, 2005

March Town Board minutes

Minutes are available for both the March 2nd hearing on the possible annexation of the Dryden Mutual Property to the Village of Dryden and the Town Board's regular meeting on March 10th, which I missed. The March 2nd minutes are...

Posted by simon at 9:00 AM

March 25, 2005

Grass as biofuel

On Monday afternoon, I went to see a presentation up on Mount Pleasant that may hold some promise for both agriculture and open space in Dryden. Cornell scientists have been working with various kinds of grass, working to find ways...

Posted by simon at 6:51 PM

March 19, 2005

Windmills? Maybe not

This week's Dryden Courier leads with an article on the windmills Cornell has proposed building on Mount Pleasant, which could provide 10-15% of the university's electricity. Neighbors are less than happy, and the Courier reports that 15 of them signed...

Posted by simon at 8:46 AM

March 10, 2005

Wind power on Mount Pleasant?

This morning's Ithaca Journal includes a first look at Cornell's plans to put up to eight wind turbines on Mount Pleasant, near its current observatory. Cornell is "still in the study phase of this," and has put "a 50-meter weather...

Posted by simon at 8:53 AM

January 24, 2005

Windmills, weather, and wish lists

This morning's Journal mentions a project I've heard rumored but not seen in print, the possibility of Cornell setting up windmills in Dryden and elsewhere in Tompkins County. The University is doing tests now in Dryden, "though Joyce declined to...

Posted by simon at 7:43 AM

January 10, 2005

After school in McLean; tax issues

This morning's Ithaca Journal looks at a new after-school program in McLean, giving kids more to do in the hamlet. Lack of transportation keeps kids in the area after school, and there isn't a place for kids to hang out...

Posted by simon at 8:42 AM

December 5, 2004

Possible park-and-ride near NYSEG

On Tuesday, I went to a subcommittee meeting of the Ithaca Tompkins County Transportation Committee (ITCTC) that discussed the possibility of building park-and-rides around the county to reduce the number of cars driving into Cornell University every day. They discussed...

Posted by simon at 9:50 AM

November 24, 2004

Eagle Scout project at DVMH; Victorian Winter Festival coming

This morning's Ithaca Journal is pretty well packed with news about and surrounding Dryden. Cathy Wakeman's Town Talk column looks at Eagle Scout Christopher Ackley's project, rebuilding the east entrance on the Dryden Veterans Memorial Home. Wakeman also offers a...

Posted by simon at 8:28 AM

October 24, 2004

Responses to Slush Funds

Today's Syracuse Post-Standard runs a followup article to the series on New York Slush Funds they ran earlier this week. Much to my surprise, I wound up quoted on the front page: Down in Dryden, Simon St. Laurent writes a...

Posted by simon at 10:21 AM

October 19, 2004

Where the slush goes, and some of why

The Syracuse Post-Standard continues its series of articles on the Governor's, Senate's, and Assembly's borrowed slush fund money, concluding with a list of 1720 recipients since 1997. Highlights include: Play Ball or Else, a piece on how the funds process...

Posted by simon at 12:17 PM

October 3, 2004

Monkey Run, nature preserve

I went for a hike today with friends down the south side of the old Monkey Run Road (coming off Route 366 above Varna) and then west along a trail above Fall Creek that went through the nature preserve to...

Posted by simon at 5:53 PM

September 24, 2004

Raptors across town line

I couldn't find much on Dryden in today's Ithaca Journal, but they did have an article about Cornell getting approval to build a raptor barn in their poultry complex on the western (Ithaca) side of Game Farm Road. It sounds...

Posted by simon at 6:00 PM

September 20, 2004

Judy's Day photos

While I was at Bethel Grove, Michael Ludgate (of Ludgate Farms) was at another event with a large dose of history, though just outside the Town of Dryden. He was taking around 200 pictures of Judy's Day at Cornell Plantations,...

Posted by simon at 10:05 AM

August 20, 2004

Reaching the Ithaca line

My photographic trek from Route 13 to the Town of Ithaca line along Route 366 has come to its end. After the last few houses and the fields, only two buildings remain, both on the border between the Town of...

Posted by simon at 8:15 AM

August 15, 2004

Fields along Dryden Road

As I get closer to the Dryden/Ithaca boundary, one parcel really stands out. It's 45 acres of Cornell fields, actively farmed. It's large enough to build a community on it, and it's convenient to Cornell and not far from East...

Posted by simon at 1:29 PM

August 4, 2004

Organic farm research in Freeville

This morning's Ithaca Journal visits the open house at Cornell's Freeville Organic Research Farm, looking at the experiments underway and visitor reactions. Also in Freeville, Congressman Sherwood Boehlert will be hosting a forum on homeland security and first responders at...

Posted by simon at 6:55 AM

April 6, 2004

F.H. Fox was born in '23

Posted by simon at 11:32 PM