Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Summer Fishing Trip


Officers Clarke, Ware and some volunteers took a group of children on a fishing trip to Black Lake over a long weekend beginning August 8th.

See the rest of the pics on Flickr.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


originally uploaded by kwmcnutt.

"If I happen to be alive today,
I have to say that whatever happened yesterday,
happened yesterday.

If someone did something bad to me,
I have to forgive them,
or else what they did will hound me every day . . .

Every day, I have to proceed. Let me proceed."

- Julius Wani

Defined by courage and triumph over his experiences in Sudan, Julius Wani is no longer a "Lost Boy".

Syracuse Post Standard Columnist Sean Kirst has chronicled the story of this friend of Lopez Lomong, including his reaction to the results of Lomong's Olympic competition. Don't miss it.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Gold Medal Sportsmanship: Alicia Sacramone

Good leadership is like good sportsmanship. One of the most important lessons to be learned in victory and defeat is the need to be gracious, win or lose.

Alicia Sacramone's performance on the balance beam in Beijing presented a great test of her sportsmanship and leadership abilities, particularly after the competition ended.

The captain and her teammates on the US Women's Gymnastics team have endured more pressure from the distractions created by international politics than any other team thus far in the Beijing Olympics. With a few exceptions, commentators seem unwilling to acknowledge the impact of these matters on the athletes.

China was honored with the torch. They have succeeded in grabbing the world's attention with spectacular displays. Carrying the torch involves responsibilities as well, including advancing the principles of good sportsmanship.

Sportsmanship is about more than the outcome of the game. It's also about how the game is played, under what conditions, and how coaches and athletes choose to respond. When the emphasis of coaches, athletes, parents, officials, fans or the media is focused on winning at the expense of everything else, there is nothing of value left to be learned when a team does not get the top prize. Nor is there much of lasting value to achievements gained on an uneven playing field.

Good coaches ensure that the right lessons are learned so that athletes can perform better the next time. Others, including the media, play a role in either supporting these learning opportunities or hindering them, not just for the athletes but for all who are observing. In that regard, they're carrying the Olympic torch as well.

Under such scrutiny, athletes who maintain their composure and behave with dignity in spite of a loss, under conditions beyond their control, are to be commended.

For all those involved in influencing youth, the Olympic games, and these circumstances specifically, present teachable moments about good sportsmanship. These lessons translate into other life circumstances. Similar circumstances may be encountered in the workplace and in relationships with others.

In sportsmanship and leadership, Alicia Sacramone gave a gold medal performance.

Note: Alicia's interview with Andrea Joyce following her performance is here. If you use Mozilla and have problems accessing it, try opening it in Internet Explorer.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Picnic with Police and Fire Departments a Success


Hundreds of children and families turned out for the Picnic with the Police and Fire Departments that took place on Thursday in Washington Square Park.

Many loyal volunteers returned to the picnic this year to cook, assemble and serve hundreds of hot dogs and hamburgers to the public who attended. The grill masters behind the large barbecue, along with servers for all the other food items were stationed under a pavilion and went at full speed all afternoon.

Sides, cold drinks and the ever popular snow-cones rounded out the picnic fare. All food, ice, and other items were supplied by donors. Attendance was steady throughout the afternoon, in spite of a few brief showers.

Snow Cone Maker

Officers from the Syracuse Police Department's Community Policing and Traffic Divisions displayed equipment and programs, or assisted children near the entertainment areas. Several police vehicles were available for demonstration. A few patrol officers that work the North side were present when they were able to stop by.


Students from the GREAT program volunteered at the event, giving a helping hand wherever needed, including at the DARE Unit's information tent. There were other displays by various units.

In addition, Chief of Police Gary Miguel and the chiefs of each division were all present to greet the public during lunch. They stopped and talked with neighbors and supporters regarding topics of interest. Lots of Police Center friends stopped by, including Brian Cubbison of the Post Standard, who is part of our online community as well.


A Syracuse Fire Department chief, plus all of the officers and firefighters from Station 2 were present to help kick off and staff the picnic. They brought Truck, Engine and Mini 2 with them for demonstration to interested attendees. More than one hundred families had their pictures taken in or near the yellow ladder Truck and the red Engine that provided colorful backdrops. Firefighters patiently lifted children onto the steps and into the seats, then posed with them when asked.

Polariods took a bow at this year's event and made their final exit. Digital photography with on-demand printing was given a whirl for the first time, supplying some very nice take-aways for the families. We'll be perfecting this process for the Christmas Party.

Several times during the event, the firefighters administered first aid to a few children with minor cuts and bruises, and were dispatched to a nearby accident with injuries in front of the Police Center. With the exception of this, everything went off without a hitch.


Entertainment included various games with prizes, playground equipment and a very popular bouncy house that the kids rocked. Volunteers and officers supplied the resources to supervise and run the entertainment, all of which was made possible by private donations. One of the volunteer teams included a mother who owns a North side business, and brings her two teenage sons to give a hand at our events.


Some children cooled off in the fountain or by sitting under a tree to get their face painted. There were some very colorful and unique designs on the children's faces this year. Donors and volunteers provide the supplies and labor for this favorite feature of the picnic.


Additional photos from the event can be seen on our Flickr site.

We sincerely thank everyone who made this event possible: Our donors, volunteers, members of the City of Syracuse Police, Fire and other departments, and supporters, including the media and area businesses who publicized the event. The Picnic would not have been possible without you!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Content With Our Content?

"Suggestion" originally uploaded by Bstar.

We've added a feature called "Skribit" (scribe-it) to the blog, a "suggestion box".

This is your opportunity to provide input on the topics and other content you'd like to see on this site.

Here's how Skribit works:
  • Click on the question, "What should I write about?"
  • A box pops up where you can type in a brief suggestion, 100 characters max.
  • Hit "submit". Your suggestion will appear in the box with a "vote" button next to it.
  • By voting, on the suggestions made, readers will choose the ideas they like best.
We're allowing anonymous suggestions, so you will not have to register in order to offer one.

Have at it.