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Madison County honors 4H members

On Jan. 10, Cornell Cooperative Extension of Madison County hosted the 2013 4H Awards and Recognition Banquet. This year’s banquet had 100 people in attendance and started off with a homemade ziti dinner. The banquet is organized every year to recognize the achievements of Madison County 4Her’s. Those who attend are awarded for community service, 4-H projects, leadership and how they bring 4-H into their everyday lives.

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Cazenovia College Center for Equine Business Development approved for state grant

Cazenovia College is hoping this year to make multi-million-dollar capital improvements to its Center for Equine Business Development — and recently received assistance of up to $500,000 from the New York State Regional Economic Development Council.

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Greyrock Farm CSA begins fourth growing season, opens CSA enrollment

On any given day during the planting season, a person driving down East Lake Road in Cazenovia may see Matt Volz, or his partner Gillian Goldberg, out in the fields driving a horse-drawn plow. Occasionally, Volz, dressed for the weather and dirty from work, may be standing on the stopped plow, while the horses patiently wait, as he talks or texts on his iPhone. This juxtaposition of tradition and technology, of old and new, is the essence of Greyrock Farm’s Consumer Supported Agriculture (CSA) program: a year-round offering to members of not just seasonal vegetables, but also grass-fed beef and lamb, pastured pork and chicken — all of which are raised, slaughtered and processed on-site — as well as eggs from pastured laying hens and raw milk.

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Circa looks to move location to 4 Chenango Street

A local restaurant owner and local building owner last week pitched their proposal to the village board to build either an addition onto or a freestanding structure next to the current building at 4 Chenango St. for the purpose of moving the Cazenovia restaurant Circa to the new location. The move would allow Circa owner Alicyn Hart to provide her customers with a bigger restaurant space, outdoor seating with a river view and more parking

Owera Vineyards withdraws events building application from planning board

Owera Vineyards has given up, for now, on its proposal to build a state-of-the-art, sound-proofed building in which to hold events on its East Lake Road property. Last Friday, Jan. 10, it withdrew its application for site plan review of the building from the Cazenovia Town Planning Board, Cazenovia Town Attorney John Langey said during the town board’s Jan. 13 meeting.

Lincklaen House to host beer pairing dinner with Empire Brewing Company

The Lincklaen House will be hosting a beer pairing dinner with Empire Brewing Company, the Syracuse-based microbrewery that is soon to break ground on a new brewing facility in Cazenovia. The event will start at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 16, and Empire's founder David Katleski and Brewmaster Tim Butler will be on hand to meet with guests prior to dinner at 7 p.m.

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Owera Vineyards attorney, owner deny knowledge of multiple operational violations

State Liquor Authority chair questions both on accuracy of statements

Owera Vineyards owner Nancy Muserlian and her attorney John P. Sidd, of the Syracuse law firm Menter, Rudin & Trivelpiece, appeared before the New York State Liquor Authority last week seeking reconsideration of the authority’s previous denial of a liquor license to the winery. During the Jan. 3 hearing in New York City, there was extended questioning by SLA Chair Dennis Rosen to Muserlian and Sidd about violations issued by local municipalities against Owera’s operating practices — violations Muserlian and Sidd said they knew nothing about.

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State Liquor Authority denies Owera liquor and catering licenses for second time

Owner Nancy Muserlian tells commissioners the winery will undergo ‘major changes;’ hopes brides will cancel upcoming weddings

For the second time in just over four weeks, the New York State Liquor Authority has denied an application by Owera Vineyards for both its own liquor license and its ability to use third-party catering permits to provide food and alcohol at winery events. Like the authority’s first denial on Dec. 2, its commissioners specifically cited the numerous neighbor complaints and alleged deteriorating quality of life issues in the neighborhood as the reason for their denial; unlike the December decision, the authority’s Jan. 3 meeting was attended and addressed by Owera owner Nancy Muserlian and her attorney, as well as two of the winery’s East Lake Road neighbors.

Village Edge South project moving forward

Public hearing and special meeting of village board coming in January

The Economic Health and Heritage Committee has completed its draft design guidelines for the Village Edge South zone development, and intends to have a draft zoning amendment completed and ready for public presentation by early January.

League of Women Voters to host presentation on CNY regional sustainability plan

The League of Woman Voters of Cazenovia is sponsoring a special task force presentation titled, “The Central New York Regional Sustainability Plan,” presented by Chris Carrick, to educate the public on how the regional plan impacts Cazenovia, Madison County and all of Central New York. The event will be held at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 14, in the Cazenovia Public Library community room.

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Town planning board delays Owera decision due to neighbors’ ZBA appeal

So much new information has surfaced in the past two weeks, and so many new developments occurred, that the Cazenovia Town Planning Board voted unanimously Thursday, Dec. 19, to continue its public hearing on Owera Vineyards’ site plan review for the proposed new events building and probably hold off on any sort of vote on the proposal until February. The board’s decision came after nearly two hours of neighbor comments at a Dec. 19 special hearing during which it was revealed that Town Codes Enforcement Officer Roger Cook had issued a positive opinion on Owera’s adherence to town zoning laws and state Department of Agriculture and Markets rules, that Owera’s East Lake Road neighbors had appealed Cook’s determination to the town’s zoning board of appeals and that the neighbors had hired an attorney to represent their interests.

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Skaneateles-area farmers discuss renewable energy at agricultural program meeting

The Skaneateles Lake Watershed Agricultural Program held its annual meeting on Dec. 9 at the First Presbyterian Church of Skaneateles. The event included an annual report from Mark Burger, the Onondaga County Soil and Water District executive director, a panel on renewable energy and the presentation of the 2013 Environmental Steward Award to Mike McMahon of E-Z Acres farm in Homer.

Planning board requests review of Owera Vineyards’ adherence to town zoning laws

The Cazenovia Town Planning Board has requested an official, written opinion from the town codes enforcement officer on whether Owera Vineyards is violating town zoning laws by holding so many events at its East Lake Road location. The action was taken after — and apparently in response to — public comments from the winery’s neighbors at the board’s Dec. 5 meeting charging that Owera was operating its numerous events in violation of town zoning laws and the planning board therefore should not approve the winery’s proposed events building. The CEO’s report is due before Dec. 19, the day on which the board will hold a special meeting to continue its site plan review process of Owera’s building request.

Owera denied liquor permit by State Liquor Authority

Owera Vineyards will not be approved for the liquor license it wants, nor will it be given any more caterer’s permits for next year’s wedding events it plans to hold unless and until the numerous complaints and concerns of the winery’s neighbors over loud music and deteriorating quality of life are addressed and solved. This was the decision of the New York State Liquor Authority last week when it considered Owera’s liquor license application.

Two Madison County colleges receive state recycling association grants

Morrisville State College and Colgate University recently won $900 grants to expand special events and sports recycling programs on their campuses.