October 21, 2013

Home Briefs: Oct. 21, 2013


---- — First Weekends in Plattsburgh holding scarecrow contest

PLATTSBURGH — First Weekends in Plattsburgh invites businesses and organization to create and display scarecrows during the month of October.

Scarecrows can be any size and made out of any materials. On Nov. 2, First Weekend volunteers will transport all scarecrows to Trinity Park where they will be displayed for the public.

During this period, there will be a photo contest, where residents can take creative photos with scarecrows and post them on First Weekend’s Facebook and Twitter pages: @fwplattsburgh and #scaryplatts.

The person who submits the most popular photo will win a scarecrow of their choice. The contest is a fun and unique way to receive monthlong publicity for businesses to a broader audience and spread awareness of First Weekends.

“The scarecrows are bound to generate attention,” said First Weekends Vice President Leigh Simonette.

“By having a photo contest we hope to use that attention to both our benefit and the participating businesses. People are going to get competitive about who can take the most creative photo.”

If you are interested in participating, please notify First Weekends at and you will be provided with a “First Weekends” Button for your scarecrow to wear. First Weekends will  list your business online.

If you are interested in participating but may not have the time or staff to make a scarecrow, please contact First Weekends, and they may have options to assist in creating your scarecrow.

Family Upcycling workshop offered

SARANAC LAKE — BluSeed Studios is offering Family Upcycling, a new workshop for parents, relatives or caregivers to take with their children Oct. 25.

Stephanie DeJoseph, independent designer and artist of La Mia Designs, will teach this creative and innovative workshop. Each family is asked to bring one old, tired household item that can be repurposed, such as small furniture or a lamp. The workshop will be 5 to 7 p.m. Friday at 24 Cedar St, Saranac Lake. Cost is $100 per family. Contact BluSeed, 891-36799 or for more infomation or to register.

Winter Farmers Market underway

PLATTSBURGH — The Plattsburgh Winter Farmers Market will be held many Saturdays throughout the winter at the City Recreation Center.

This is the market’s fourth season. Every market will feature a selection of farm-raised food, including vegetables, grass-fed and pastured meats, cheeses, eggs, wines and sauces. Customers can order online

and pick up at farms in Peru and Saranac if they can’t get to the market.

The market will be held every Saturday through Dec. 21 and then first and third Saturdays through May 3, 2014.

Gardening presentation in Chazy

CHAZY — Chazy Public Library is hosting “Putting Your Garden to Bed,” a free presentation 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 23, at the library.

Reserve your space by calling 561-7450 or emailing

Energy conservation workshop Tuesday

PLATTSBURGH — Cornell Cooperative Extension will explore many ways homeowners can reduce their energy bills through no-cost and low-cost energy actions at a workshop 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Cooperative Extension Office, 6064, Route 22. 

Each participating household will take home a kit of energy-saving items.

Reserve your seat and free kit at 561-7450 or email Peter Hagar at

Credit Union hosts Homebuyers Workshop Nov. 14

PLATTSBURGH — UFirst Federal Credit Union is hosting a free Homebuyers Workshop on Thursday, Nov. 14, at The West Side Ballroom, 253 New York Road, Plattsburgh.

Guest speakers are Tom Iuorno, an licensed mortgage loan officer and attorney Gary L. Favro. Registration is from 5:30 to 6 p.m. and the workshop runs 6 to 8 p.m.

To sign up for this workshop contact Jody Carpenter at 324-0611 or by Friday, Nov. 1. Please leave your name, email address and phone number where you can be reached. You can also sign up at UFirst brances: 274 Rugar St., Plattsburgh; or 72 Champlain St., Rouses Point.

Adirondack Garden Club marks milestone

ELIZABETHTOWN — Essex County Adirondack Garden Club celebrated its 85th anniversary Sept. 22.

Members, guests and friends met at the Lake Placid Club Golf House for a dinner to acknowledge achievements to conserve the natural habitat and to contribute to civic beautification in Essex County during the past 85 years.

A collection of club  artifacts, photographs and written source materials has been on display and is available at The Adirondack History Center Museum and the Essex County Historical Society in Elizabethtown. In recent years, the Archives Committee chaired by Happy Marsh has continued to add to and classify this collection, part of the recorded history of the Adirondacks.

US 30-year mortgage rate at 4.28%

WASHINGTON (AP) — Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages rose slightly last week, staying near three-month lows. Rates could fall next week now that lawmakers reached a deal to avert a possible government debt default and reopen the federal government.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said Thursday that the average rate on the 30-year loan increased to 4.28 percent from 4.23 percent last week. The average on the 15-year fixed loan edged up to 3.33 percent from 3.31 percent.

Mortgage rates began falling last month after the Federal Reserve held off slowing its $85-billion-a-month in bond purchases. The bond buys are intended to keep longer-term interest rates low, including mortgage rates. And rates stayed relatively low during the 16-day partial government shutdown.

Rates are likely to fall even lower now that Congress reached a deal to reopen the government and allow the Treasury to borrow normally until early February.

Mortgage rates tend to follow the yield on the 10-year Treasury note. The 10-year note fell to 2.61 percent Thursday, down from 2.74 percent Tuesday.

To calculate average mortgage rates, Freddie Mac surveys lenders across the country on Monday through Wednesday each week. The average doesn’t include extra fees, known as points, which most borrowers must pay to get the lowest rates. One point equals 1 percent of the loan amount.

The average fee for a 30-year mortgage was steady at 0.7 point. The fee for a 15-year loan also was unchanged at 0.7 point.

The average rate on a one-year adjustable-rate mortgage slipped to 2.63 percent from 2.64 percent and the fee held at 0.4 point.

The average rate on a five-year adjustable mortgage rose to 3.07 percent from 3.05 percent. The fee was unchanged at 0.4 point.