Community turns out for Hartford’s 33 graduates

S tanding in front of a packed house in a conveniently air-conditioned Hartford Central School gymnasium, Renee Thorpe paused for a moment before handing out two Kiwanis Club awards.

First, she paid the entire town a compliment.

“I looked around, and there were so many people,” she said. “I said, ‘These kids have big families.’ Some told me no, that folks in town like to come watch the kids graduate,” said Thorpe, who works at Glens Falls Hospital.  I had never heard anything like that before.”

Principal Andrew Cook struck both light and serious notes as he spoke to the 33 graduates who took part in the school’s 76th graduation Friday night.

First, he noted that June 22 is also “National Chocolate Éclair Day,” and proceeded to hand out éclairs to each member of the class after getting “permission” from Superintendent Thomas Abraham.

Then, he mixed humor with the more serious idea that the Internet is becoming more and more of a factor in students’ lives.

“We’re always connected these days,” Cook said. “I am sure somewhere, not here, someone is updating Facebook, ‘Listening to a boring speaker.’ ”

Later, Cook turned serious by quoting a well-known line from “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.”

“As Ferris Bueller said, ‘Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it,’ ” he said. “I bet everyone in here blinked. They’re in kindergarten, then all of a sudden, you’re at graduation. Life does move pretty fast.”

Valedictorian Philip Cassella also mined the humor vein is his speech.

“My friends told me it would be easy. I don’t realize until just now they were lying,” he said. “They tell you to imagine you’re singing in the shower or to imagine that the audience is in its underwear. Then, I thought about the size of my showers and that that if all the people here were in there, and I was in my underwear, I would have bigger problems than giving a speech.”

Cassella, who will major in sports marketing at Syracuse University, constructed his speech so he could hit all the themes of thanking teachers and parents, acknowledging his classmates’ achievements, giving advice and touching everyone in the crowd with his speech.

His advice was, “Simply find time to relax. Find someone who means something to you and spend time with them.”

His method for touching everyone in the crowd was creative. He told everyone to raise their right hands and put them on the shoulders of the person next two them. “See,” he said. “Now I have touched all of you with my speech.”

Brian Getty, president of the board of education, handed out diplomas and wound up with a pocketful of trinkets the graduates handed him in exchange. “Want a trinket?” he asked at the post-graduation reception.

The school’s faculty recognized teaching assistant Christina Jones, who left the school in January, won an award as a “teacher emeritus.”

The faculty also recognized four students — Salutatorian Katherine Frye, Charissa Lewis, Morgan Carpenter and Ethan Farley with monetary awards.

For nine graduates, this was their second ceremony in as many Fridays, as they also took part in the BOCES Southern Adirondack Education Center’s event at the Glens Falls Civic Center June 15.

The students were: Melanie Arno, heavy equipment and operations II; Rebecca Clauder, new visions health careers exploration; Patrick DeLaCruz, cosmetology II; Curtis Dewey, welding II; Sean Goodell, welding II; Jenna Holcomb, health occupations II; Brieanna Loveland, health occupations II; Shawn Wall, heavy equipment and operations II; Katrina Wilkins, health occupations I.

Among the scholarships, DeLaCruz received the award from Brenda’s Chop Shop, a local beauty parlor and tanning salon run by his BOCES teacher, Brenda Choppa.

The musical program was directed by Lynette Dougher and Jillian Smith.

Cassella and Frye graduated with advanced Regents’ diplomas with honors and Brittany Brayman, Rebecca Clauder, Cierra Colvin, Patrick Coppins, Farley, Lewis, Alexander Norton, Cody Palmer, and Robert Petit all received advanced Regents’ diplomas.

Thirty-one scholarships went out during the ceremony, including $1,500 scholarships from Jointa Galusha LLC to Brayman and Lewis.

 

 

 

 

Comments

comments

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Village’s public hearing continuing

Whitehall Municipal Center.

By PJ Ferguson The public hearing regarding the village’s comprehensive revitalization plan will remain open until Tuesday, April 14, as […]

N. Williams may stay closed

village board

By PJ Ferguson The section of North Williams Street that has been closed since September due to the damaged canal […]

Local slate company retools, makes PPE

slate

Millennium Slate LLC is reopening and retooling its plant to make personal protective equipment (PPE) for the Covid-19 pandemic. On […]

Telescope offers production services, state remains mum

telescope

By Matthew Saari With COVID-19 cases continuing to mount, New York State is ignoring businesses fully capable of producing personal […]

Obituary: Maxine R. St. Claire

St.Claire, Max1 photo 2

    Whitehall- Maxine R. St. Claire, a devout catholic, loving wife, Mother, Grandmother and Great Grandmother, passed through the […]

Obituary: Kenneth Robert Johnson

Johnson obit photo

After a brave battle with COPD, Kenneth “Ken”, “Kenny” Robert Johnson, passed away at his home on Friday, March 20, […]

Gov. Cuomo, Main Street needs a hand from Albany

nypalogo

Covid-19 has completely changed the way we all live. But along with worrying about keeping themselves and their families healthy, […]

County faces financial ‘uncertainties’

The Washington County Board of Supervisors

By PJ Ferguson Washington County officials are clouded by financial uncertainties stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic with County Administrator Chris […]

School slated to resume soon, officials await state guidance

Whitehall High School

By PJ Ferguson As the news develops around the COVID-19 pandemic, the Whitehall Central School District faces some changes and […]

Obituary: David G. Morehouse

Morehouse updated obit photo

Fort Ann, NY – David G. Morehouse passed away at his Dad’s house on March 13, 2020, joining his parents […]

Low COVID-19 numbers in county due to lack of testing, officials say

Washington County has declared a state of emergency resulting in the closure of all non-essential departments.

By PJ Ferguson Washington County officials project that more positive cases of the novel coronavirus exist in the county than […]

Obituary: David J. Little

David Little obit photo

Middle Granville, NY – David J. Little, age 60, passed away on March 29, 2020 at his home, with his […]