Santa Claus is pictured with some of the children attending the 11th annual holiday party for Verona residents hosted by Councilman Fritz Scherz and his family.

To the Editor:

Many heartfelt thanks to everyone (volunteers and attendees) who helped make my 11th annual holiday party for Verona residents Dec. 3, 2022, a success. Fabulous volunteers worked together to make this event happen and festive attendees shared the Christmas holiday spirit. Some pictures from this event can be found at

Thanks to the following people for taking part in the programmatic portion of the event: Bingo the Clown for face painting; Trooper Trevor Noonan and K9 Rya (both from the state police) for interacting with the attendees; Rich Collins (VVS FFA Advisor), Devon Conley, Brenden Genei and Mark Hoffman, Jr., of VVS FFA; Santa Claus for giving gifts to the children; Frank Buda for performing songs on his accordion; Christmas story readers Hon. Joe Griffo (state senator) and Hon. Curtis Morgan (Oneida County Sheriff’s Office); Drew Allen of Drew’s Magic and Balloon Animals for his special show; and Spencer Walker for performing songs on his guitar.

Thanks to the following people for supporting this event in a variety of ways: Gary Bissaillon, Stan Dakosty, Frank Elias, Martha Group, Mike Jaquays, Shelley Kemp, Hon. Amy Kotwica, Alexis Kullmann, Honorable Francis LaBarbera, Hon. Rob Maciol, Captain Jason Place, Timothy Quinn, Megan Rose, Linda Scherz, Craig Semans, Gretchen Slater, Diana Wilson and Hon. Cindy Rogers Witt.

Pictured from left are state Senator Joe Griffo, State Police Lt. Frances LaBarbera, Trooper Trevor Noonan and K9 Rya, Oneida County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Curtis Morgan, Oneida County Legislator Cindy Rogers Witt and Verona Town Councilman Fritz Scherz.

Thanks to the following businesses or organizations for donating baked goods or gifts or simply helping out: Adirondack Basketry, Big Lots (Oneida Store), Circle K, Colgate University Football, Dunkin’ Donuts (Willow Place Store), Freihofer’s Bakery Outlet, Graceful Gains Wellness Studio LLC, New York State Police, Oneida County Sheriff’s Office, Oneida Indian Nation SavOn, PetZotics, Price Chopper (Oneida), Recovery Sports Grill (Verona), Silent Hooves Farm, Staples (New Hartford), Utica Coffee, VVS FFA, Walmart (Oneida) and the media that helped publicize the party.

Thanks to the Verona Fire Department for providing the venue. Special thanks to my wife Kathy and our children, Katherine, Marissa and Freddy for being so supportive, encouraging and helpful during the weeks leading up to the event and the event itself. Thanks, too, to anyone I might’ve missed who played a role in the success of this event!

In closing, the bottom line is that so many people worked together to make this event happen. It is people like you that make a community great! I am so honored to call these great people my friends and Verona my hometown! Thank you!

Fritz Scherz, Councilman, Verona Town Board

By martha

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