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The Year 2000 much like any other in Caledonia

By Sally Santora
Clarion News Staff

The year 2000, hugely anticipated the world over, arrived without much fanfare, certainly no dreaded Y2K computer tragedies. For the Caledonia-Mumford community, 2000 was a relatively quiet year, thankfully, nonetheless not without many memorable events. For a look back at the Cal-Mum stories that made the Clarion News headlines, read on.


The local Masons, Eunice Lodge #830, celebrated their 100th year anniversary with a grand dinner gala held at the Masonic Temple. Many dignitaries from Masonic Lodges statewide attended.

Speaking of the beautiful Masonic Temple in the heart of downtown Caledonia, the building was named to the National Register of Historic Places, a prestigious distinction to hold.

The Big Springs Museum also received some attention by way of a grant that provided a total renovation of the second grade room downstairs and a new outdoor entrance to the museum off of Pioneer Avenue.

United States Army Reservist Jay Ward was promoted to Full Bird Colonel, after more than 30 years with the Army. Ward is now commander of the 7th brigade.

The Livingston County Health Department studied radon levels and listed Caledonia as one of the towns with elevated levels. The health department issued free radon detection kits to property owners and held a public meeting to educate people on what radon is and how it can be removed from homes.

The community came close to losing one of its physicians and sadly, did lose another. Dr. Vythi Alagappan of Caledonia Family Medicine was nearly forced to suspend his practice here while awaiting permanent citizenship. Going public with his plea resulted in action from the INS, the green card was issued as was his medical license. He continues his successful practice in Caledonia.

The community was deeply saddened at the sudden death of the founding physician of Caledonia Family Medicine, Dr. Nicole Mazza. Mazza had practiced medicine in the community since Dr. Andaloro's retirement ten years ago. She was loved by her patients and is greatly missed.

The Caledonia Town Board voted to renovate the present town hall on Main Street, as opposed to constructing a new building. The decision followed a great deal of discussion among board members. Plans are still being finalized for the project.

The Village Board turned down the initial proposed budget for 2000-2001. After restoring one of the village positions to full time, the budget was passed.

Village board members Diane Fowler and Dean Manley were sworn in as trustees; Mark Riggi returned to the bench as village justice.

Crescent Parkway and Grand Avenue underwent major renovation this year that included installing new water and gas lines, digging up the old road and putting down a fresh, new surface and curbing.

Caledonia's own Stanley Rychlicki made not only the local headlines, but Rochester area newspapers and television stations were documenting his story as well. Rychlicki, who logged more than 130,000 miles walking the Atlantic Richfield Oil pipeline, was named to the Guinness World Record Book. The community joined his family in congratulating him on his unique accomplishment.

The community celebrated the 100th year anniversary of the erecting of Soldier's Monument in the center of downtown Caledonia. Many dignitaries attended a gala parade down State and Main Streets kicking off a day-long list of events that concluded with an outdoor Skycoasters concert at Washburn Park.

The Caledonia Fire Department elected Mark Schroeder as chief and voted to end the over 50 year tradition of the Caledonia FD carnival annually held the first weekend in June. The department voted to host a field day event in place of the carnival. This year, the department has voted to return to the traditional three-day carnival. John Pike, Jr. is carnival chairman.

Mumford Fire Department elected Paul Caton as chief. The department purchased a new fire and rescue truck last winter and is now preparing to vote January 11 on a major building renovation and expansion project.

In early December, a derailment of the Rochester and Southern Railroad hurled over a dozen cars off the track on Rt. 5 west in the Town of Caledonia. It took clean up crews several days to remove the coal spilled from the cars but no one was injured in the incident that is still under investigation.

Tom Cook announced just recently that he will retire from writing his popular Clarion column, Caledonia Senior Citizens. Tom plans to leave Caledonia at the New Year to live with his son and grandson.



A management led buyout of CEN Electronics resulted in one of Caledonia's oldest businesses becoming independently owned and operated. New owner Vern Fleming assures employees that the company will continue to expand and become more stable.

Les Cole, the man behind CRC Transload Facility, says he plans to break ground this spring. The state of the art feed and fertilizer plant will be located on Rt. 5 west in the Town of Caledonia. It is the largest agricultural facility on the East Coast.



Taxpayers in the Cal-Mum Central School District approved a $1.8 million building renovation project. Bids are expected to go out soon, with work to begin this spring.

New York State Commissioner of Education Richard Mills visited Cal-Mum. He held a discussion with the students about block scheduling.

In the May election, voters elected Susan Spencer, Randy Grattan and Herbert “Chip” Stephenson to the school board. Board members elected Grattan as president.



The parish of St. Columba-St. Patrick's completed its two-and-half year Renew process. Over 200 parishioners participated in Renew.

Mumford's First United Presbyterian Church raised over $60,000 to replace the original slate roof on the church with new Vermont slate. The roof has a life expectancy of at least 100 years.

Mumford's First Baptist Church launched the Action Center, a Christian-based after school program for elementary school children.

First Presbyterian in Caledonia celebrated the unveiling of their bicentennial flags with the Kirkin' O' Tartan worship service. The flags are handmade by members of the church, their tartans representing the various clans that have been members of the church.

The Cal-Mum Council of Churches hosted a late summer hometown picnic for the community. It was very successful and the council plans to make it an annual tradition.

That's the way the year 2000 went in Cal-Mum. We look forward to a joyous and blessed New Year for our community as we officially begin the new millennium.

Happy New Year to all!



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