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  2. The City of Elmira Announces A Ribbon Cutting for a Public Art Project on The Elmira Cultural Connector: Chemung River Echoes Monday, November 18, 2019 Noon - 12:30pm Rain, Snow or Shine! LOCATION: Northeast Corner of the Weis Parking Lot (Parking in Weis Lot on a First-Come, First-Served Basis) City of Elmira Second District Councilperson Brent Stermer is pleased to announce the Ribbon Cutting for the Elmira public art project on the Elmira Cultural Connector at N. Main Street and W. Third Street, Elmira, New York: Chemung River Echoes. “A public art installation of this magnitude demonstrates Elmira’s ever-growing capacity for community connection to its past, present and future. The sculptures, engravings and quotations represent integral parts of our City’s compelling story, from voices that travel across history,” explained City of Elmira Second District Councilperson Brent Stermer.
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  4. 7th Annual Notre Dame Turkey Day 5k

    Notre Dame High School, Maple Ave, Elmira NY 9am - 11am Join us for fun, fitness, and fellowship Thanksgiving Morning at Notre Dame High School. Our fast, flat course is the perfect way to start your day! Pre-register online at Notredamehighschool.com. You are also welcome to print a paper registration if you prefer. Hope to see you there!
  5. Happy Thanksgiving!

    Enjoy the day with family and friends!
  6. Frozen Drag Storytime

  7. Rabies Vaccine Clinic - Horseheads

  8. "Selfless Elf" 5K Walk/ Run 2019

    Thorne Street Park, Horseheads 3-5 PM
  9. Corning's 45th Annual "Sparkle"

    4:30 - 9:30 pm Market street will be closed so you can come enjoy our horse drawn wagon rides, over 45 unique vendors, a wide variety of food along with free activities. Bring your entire family along with your children to take a photo with Santa in the historic Crystal House. We look forward to seeing everyone again this year!
  10. Corning Gaffer District Parade Of Lights

    7:30 - 10:30 PM, Market St. in Corning
  11. Grand Central Plaza Holiday Bazaar

  12. Horseheads' "Holly Days"

    1-6pm in Hanover Square, Horseheads
  13. 63rd Downtown Elmira Holiday Parade

    Parade begins at 10AM
  14. Strands of Three

    It doesn’t take much to realize that greater strength lies in the cord of several strands twined together rather than a single strand alone. And so it is with marriage. Marriage is often compared to this tightly woven cord of three strands though, admittedly, at times our strands were not as tightly woven as they should have been. But, isn’t that how we grow wiser, learning from experience? When we’re individually joined in marriage, we become a couple. I believe God created us distinctly men and women, establishing the marriage union first with Adam and Eve. As we read in Genesis 2:18, “The Lord God said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.’” And in this, God joins the two to become a more efficient unit. As a couple, our differences or weaknesses are strengthened ; and, as we work together, we complement each other. In joining our hearts, we are also united with God in a holy union, like a cord of three strands for greater strength. And we find biblical wisdom demonstrates this very point: “If one falls down, his friend can help him up… Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4:10a, 12) Married in 1974 by Rev. Robert W. DeVries from Rochester, NY overseeing our Owego Christian Reformed Church, one of his examples was that if we attempt to do things in our own strength we will often fail. As a couple, we have a better chance to succeed in facing this journey of life when united in a common goal. But, an even stronger bond is created by the triangle formed as we keep God at the top with the lower horizontal points balanced by each of us as husband and wife. “‘Haven’t you read,’ [Jesus] replied, ‘that at the beginning the Creator made them male and female… For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore, what God has joined together, let man not separate.” (Matthew 19:4-6 NIV) For me and Ed, our marriage is especially close and strong when God is at the center of our relationship, so intertwined that we acknowledge Him in all we do. In seeking God’s wisdom through prayer on this journey, we find the answers we need to overcome obstacles and move forward in His will. Like bookends, anniversaries hold between them the memories of our lives. And October 26 marks our 45th anniversary. Our love has seen us through both difficult and happy days as the decades witnessed change and growth within ourselves and our family. I’ve often said I wish I knew then what I know now, but God grew us each in unique ways as our tiny infants matured into the young adults He intended them, and us, to become. And though the years witnessed much sadness, including Ed’s disabilities and the loss of our oldest daughter at 25 years, the Lord also blessed our family with much joy and peace. As part of our vows, Edward promised me his deepest love, unselfish devotion and tenderest care. He promised to direct our lives into a path of faith and hope in Christ as a faithful husband, no matter what lay ahead. Expressing deepest joy, I came into a new life with him as my husband, loving him, learning from him, and seeking to please him. As God had prepared me for him, I vowed to strengthen, comfort and encourage him, no matter what lay ahead. Though imperfect, we sure tried! But I will admit that I have not always sought God first. As alluded to in my poems and blogs, life is not an easy road... at least it has not been for us, and I have to fight the desire to take the reins myself. Maybe it has something to do with being the oldest of six, and, with my husband’s disabilities, being responsible for much. Instead, I need to release that tendency and give control to the Lord. Over the years, we learned true love cannot remain the same; without growth it ceases to exist. Yet, how often don’t we find that love grows by facing those difficulties of life together… the hard times which can either draw two hearts closer or tear them asunder. Love must be nurtured and fed, and given room to grow and expand horizons in order to complement and care for each other. True love is all about teamwork that strengthens bonds. True love is a choice to remain committed to vows made before God on a joyous wedding day… because the tough times will come. We’ve been there. And those tough days will attempt to tear apart bonds once considered unbreakable… offering an easy way out to a seemingly better life. Little tears can either become permanent scars that irritate, or be scars which evidence the soul’s healing to bring wisdom and understanding with peace and a deeper love. True love is also about making sacrifices… thinking more highly of our spouse than ourself… carrying the one who stumbles or becomes ill long term… opening up in total honesty with mutual respect and trust, extending forgiveness and grace with arms open wide… for true love grows deeper as the foundation is strengthened. As the words flow when writing a poem (and later writing its reflection), I find the Lord speaking to my heart… imparting His truth and wisdom. Coming from a family whose parents divorced amidst dysfunction, I’m thankful for the Lord’s guiding hand through life’s difficulties. In writing the poem below, I had no idea there was a ministry named for the “God’s Knot or Cord of Three Strands”. Simply searching for the verse above which referenced the strands of three, I came across a ministry that provides three cords on a golden ring for the bride and groom to braid as a symbol of God’s presence intertwined in their marriage. What a beautiful reminder of our Lord’s presence among us! Contemplating the sturdy cord made from three strands, it becomes clear we are not as easily pulled asunder when the Lord is intertwined within our marriage. United thus, we can better resist and withstand the temptations and trials which inevitably come our way. Strands of Three Linda A. Roorda The day I said I do to you Was the day we joined our hearts as one Thinking we only were thus entwined The Lord made three for a tight-knit bond. When young we think our love holds secure It’s all we need to face the great world With hopes and dreams and wide-eyed innocence We’re an open book, invincible team. You let me know how great was your love You’d never let me wander alone You took my hand as we walked this path Lit from above by wisdom’s grace. Yet there were times we could not see Life’s toughest road around the corner Devoid of help or so it had seemed We could only grasp the three-stranded cord. Together we stood as the storms hit hard When winds blew fierce like gales at sea You held me close with a calming peace Protecting my heart from disaster’s fate. You set me free on a mountain peak Your love released my soul to new heights That with your gift others I may bless For love is meant to be given away. And so I sing as the love we share Brings grace to each in the time of need For who are we mercy to withhold When the Lord above is woven within. No matter the test when focus is held Our loving Lord gives mercy and grace For our journey’s steps reflect strength within When our hearts are twined as strands of three. ~~ Jan 2015 - 05/22/15 All rights reserved. May not be reproduced without permission of author. ~
  15. There but for the Grace of God...

    I suspect we’ve all heard, “There but for the grace of God go I.” Truth be told, I think we all know how true those words are. This world has so much to offer with all of its enticements… and how easy it is for any one of us to be swayed aside… but for the wisdom found in God’s word. I’m thankful to God for preserving me from being enticed to follow a path that seemed so good, so right when younger… which, in reality, would lead to destruction. Studying the book of Proverbs in Sunday School was an eye opener. Oh, I’ve read it before, but have not studied it verse by verse in a class setting with a good instructor like our pastor. Here, the wisdom of Israel’s King Solomon is directly before us as he speaks to his son(s) and daughter(s), his children… us… me. And, knowing his life’s story, the reading becomes even more poignant. When King David died, his son, Solomon, took over the reign. In a dream, God told Solomon to ask for anything. Rather than great riches, the humble king asked for wisdom with which to rule. I sure hope I would have thought to ask for that! In granting his request, the Lord gave Solomon not only great wisdom beyond compare, but also great riches. There was no one like him before or since. To know the rest of the story is to understand that, although Solomon began his reign intending to follow God’s precepts, he was soon swayed by the world’s enticements. From humble and wise beginnings, Solomon gradually took to himself 700 wives and 300 concubines, allowing worship altars to be built for all their various gods. And it wasn’t long before this worship by his wives of their pagan gods also contributed to an undermining of his own faithful worship of the one true God. In studying the great and powerful words of wisdom in Proverbs, I can’t help but be struck by the fact that at the end of his life, Solomon realized how far he had fallen. His had been a life of great riches with glory and fame following wherever his wisdom and searching soul led him, and he was left to ponder at what he had gained. Believed to have also been written by Solomon, Ecclesiastes begins: “The word of the Teacher, son of David, king of Jerusalem: Meaningless! Meaningless! says the Teacher. Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless. What does man gain from all his labor...? …I devoted myself to study and to explore by wisdom all that is done under heaven. What a heavy burden God has laid on men! I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind.” (Eccl. 1:1, 2, 13, 14) Understanding that he had pursued all that which wisdom had to offer in this life, it appears the Teacher, presumably Solomon, was not afraid to admit it had all been for naught. His conclusion, instead, was that there was a purpose to be found in the relationship with his, and our, one true God. For, in the end, the Teacher concluded, “Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come…and the spirit returns to God who gave it… Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.” (Eccl. 12: 1, 7, 13) And these were the thoughts which came to mind as I reflected on this poem well after it was written. Not one of us can say we are sin free. Assuredly, we haven’t committed major crimes. But, deep inside, in all honesty, our heart is not always pure as we struggle in our human attempts to follow a perfect Lord. We, a product of this world, tend to seek our own way in our daily walk – and I know my own bent. And I am so thankful that He pursues us with a never-ending boundless love. May I learn from Solomon’s wisdom, and from his mistakes, and humbly bow my heart to our Lord. May I learn to follow His words of wisdom, and His will for my life, wherever He may lead… for “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” (Psalm 119:105 NIV) Your Word Linda A. Roorda Your word is like a comforting hand Within the midst of stress-filled days It calms the heart and soothes the soul To find a peace within Your embrace. Your word is like a sharpened sword It pierces the soul with words brought to mind Causing a change when nothing else can Instructing me, Your wisdom to heed. Your word is like a beautiful scene That greets my eyes, tranquil and serene It points to You, Creator of all Showing Your power and infinite might. Your word is like a solid rock Unshakeable with its absolute truth Lasting forever, foundation secure Its wisdom gained to guide and to lead. Your word is like the calm after storms When winds blow fierce and clouds gather dark As rain pours down to freshen this world So to the soul are Your words of peace. Your word is like a beautiful bud Daily growing under sun and rain It opens wide with petals of silk To show the world its hidden glory. Your word is like a fine sunny day With healing warmth down deep in the soul It broadens faith, shines light on wisdom And illumine steps to direct my path. ~~ 10/27/14 All rights reserved. May not be reproduced without permission of author. ~~
  16. A Question For Grandma

    Reread this - loved it that much! You are blessed, Ann
  17. Most likely you’re looking at the site right now and wondering what happened. A short while ago I announced I would be making some radical changes to the site. You see when I decided to take a little break from social media this past Summer, it dawned on me that the increased amount of work being put into the site hadn’t really paid off in increased readership. So, rather than try to keep up with reporting pertinent daily news besides arrest reports and press releases, I decided to make some changes. The one gem of this site in my opinion has been the Community Voices section, written by people from across the region. There’s been several times in the past where the idea to make that the featured section of this site and now seems like the perfect time to do so. So we’re going to change format and make Community Voices and the forums, the two features that I think stand out in the local media market and simply can’t be beat. Community Writers now moves to the forefront of the site, giving it the attention I believe it deserves. The forums also will once again become a larger focus of the site. For several reasons, many of the sections will once again be returned to “Members Only”. Consumer surveys done this Summer indicate there’s a wider audience who visit the site often to read what everyone is saying but do not take the time to register an account. I realize that may not be a popular move. But registering for an account is free and requires less information than many other sites. Plus, it’s only fair to those who take the time to contribute their thoughts to ask that others sign in at the very least. And if it encourages increased participation, all the better. As for social media… You know, it’s funny, but five years ago as I was trying to build an audience on outlets like Facebook, the idea of backing away from it on the brink of a landmark number of followers would have struck me as insane. But frankly it’s not really that important to me anymore. Facebook likes and followers has not led to a similar amount of daily readers for this site. Certainly not enough to make it a priority. And honestly, I am tired of the rancor that has become so much a part of the social media experience. So the social media accounts will remain for the purpose of promoting our writers’ work as well as promoting community events as a public service. But that’s it. The focus will be here on the site. So that’s why all the shifting and moving you see taking place. In closing, I want to thank the people who have contributed to this site and supported this endeavor from the day the “OPEN” sign turned on. Without you folks, there’s no way this site would exist and it’s because of you I continue to keep it going.
  18. A Question For Grandma

    I have seven grandchildren; six grandsons and one granddaughter. The six eldest are now teenagers ranging in age from 17 to 13. Our youngest grandson turned 5 this past July. When the six older grandchildren were little, I started calling them all Roy, including our granddaughter. I told them I was doing this in case I became forgetful as I got older and couldn't remember their names. The boys thought it was hilarious that I also called our granddaughter Roy. The fun thing was that when all the grandkids were at the house and playing outside I would just yell Roy and they would all come running, laughing like crazy. I thought of it as something special between us. When our youngest grandson was born he was known as Little Roy. Something else I always did with my grandchildren was to randomly ask them "who loves you". Their answers were always "you do". I realized the other day, after a conversation with my youngest grandson that I haven't asked that question of my teenage grandchildren in a long time. I will have to remedy that. I have never seen myself as a very demonstrative person. I always knew my parents loved me but I don't ever remember hearing the words. Saying "I love you" is not always easy for me. With age comes wisdom and I'm working on that, consciously saying the words especially to those who are important to me. I don't want them to assume like I did, I want them to hear the words and know they are loved. Unfortunately old habits and patterns are difficult to break and my most recent reminder came from Texas. Hubby's cousin Patsy moved back home with her husband, Len. They are two very kind, thoughtful and caring people. Patsy's mother, Aunt Marian, was such a loving, kind, thoughtful woman who loved freely and shared that love with everyone. The first time I visited Aunt Marian and her family as a young bride, I remember feeling so uncomfortable. They were not the cause of my discomfort, it was something within me. You see, Aunt Marian and her family hugged each other just leaving and entering a room. "I love you's" were said like "hello's" and you knew they were genuine. Aunt Marian was always telling someone "you're so special", "you're wonderful", or "you make me so happy". Patsy reminds me of her Mom and has also reminded me that the words are just as important as the actions. The other day Little Roy was riding along with me as I drove to finish my last errand, and as always he talked about everything. The changing colors of the trees, the shapes and colors of the clouds, what his brothers did, how he cracked his Mom's cell phone and was grounded. We were chatting along and I asked him "who loves you". "You do" was his immediate reply. He then started talking about how he won't be going to kindergarten because he doesn't like school and his next question was "Grandma, will you love me when I get big"? "Of course I will" I told him, "just like I love your older cousins". "Will you love me when I get older" I asked him. "Grandma, you're already old" he calmly told me. "Yes, I know I'm old but hopefully I'll get older. If my hair turns white and I get wrinkles (luckily he let that go by), will you love me then" I asked him. "Yep" was his short and sweet answer. He changed the subject to where we were going next and we talked about that; one question leading to ten more. "Will you love me forever, Grandma" he asked out of the blue. "Yes I will" I told him. "Forever is a long time Grandma" he reminded me. "Yes, I know. That's exactly how long I'll love you". Three little words, so very important to say. All rights reserved.
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