April showers did not dampen Panther spirit and hundreds came out for the Rye Neck Spring Fair April 22 at the High/Middle School campus. In honor of Earth Day, visitors wore their Pachamama (Mother Earth) T-shirts and Rye Nature Center staff shared composting techniques at an environmental table.

The fair, co-chaired by Arlena Amos and Jeannie Baio, celebrated Rye Neck pride with new attractions, such as a coconut-climbing tree and a four-person Euro bungee, along with thrilling rides, obstacle courses, bounce inflatables, and farm animals at a petting zoo.

Indoors, balloon twisting, tattoos, hair and face painting, and a cake walk awaited. Origami masters taught the kids to make spirit animal masks and Total Fusion had visitors learning yoga in the gym. Rye Neck’s a cappella group and the chorus from their spunky “Legally Blonde” musical provided entertainment.

At the end of the day, raffle prizes — gift cards, an Apple TV, and a fitness class party — were distributed to some lucky winners. The fair brightened up an otherwise gray day for the whole community.

— Janice Llanes Fabry

Osborn School partnered with Boosterthon to raise money for new gym equipment and donate to local food banks. At the weeklong school-wide event, children worked as a community to earn pledges and build school spirit. In the process, they had a great time and exceeded their financial goals with a 93% participation rate.

Photos by Annette McLoughlin

Resurrection School sixth-grade teacher Mrs. Bikjorn kicks off each school year with a lesson on stewardship and religion, discussing what even the smallest donation can mean to those less fortunate. She then challenges her students to put those theories into action. 

Every “Quarter Wednesday” students voluntarily donate pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters. Even 7th and 8th graders, who were previously involved in the program, continue to donate and participate. By Christmastime, the students choose the organization they want to contribute to. This year, just before Easter, Resurrection sixth graders were proud to give $455 to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital. 

Photo courtesy of Resurrection School

The League of Women Voters of Rye, Rye Brook, and Port Chester has chosen Carly Kabot, a sophomore at Blind Brook High School, and Reanna Rosenfeld, a junior at Port Chester High School, to attend the Students Inside Albany (SIA) Conference next month.

SIA, sponsored by the LWV New York State Education Foundation, is designed to increase students’ awareness of their responsibility in a representative government and to provide the tools necessary for meeting that responsibility. The conference brings together approximately 60 high school students from across the state. Students participate in a series of interactive discussions with Albany insiders on topics such as the state budget process, the role of lobbyists in the legislative process, the rights of citizens to access government information, and the role of the media in politics.

“We are pleased that outstanding young people such as Carly and Reanna will have the opportunity to experience government in action,” said Joan Feinstein, student outreach coordinator of the local league.


Carly Kabot

Reanna Rosenfeld

To the Early Birds Go the Awards

There are lots of annual occasions we might occasionally skip, but not the Rye Youth Council Awards Breakfast. It’s good for the soul, and not just because it’s held in church.

On April 25 at 7:30 a.m., the Rye Presbyterian Church Westminster Room was filled with students of high caliber, their parents, and well-wishers from Rye’s schools and community organizations.

In her welcoming remarks, Rye Youth Council Executive Director Diane Rosenthal encouraged all the students in the room to think about who encouraged them. “We thank those families, schools, and the community.”

Casey Carlucci DeCola, Director of Teen Services, said she is always heartened to help cultivate an environment that helps young people reach their greatest potential. “Our kids truly aspire to be agents of change.”

Alec Jautz, a Rye High junior, offered a student’s perspective of the ways in which the Youth Council embraces the whole Rye community. “Many of us have enjoyed not only helping Rye’s senior citizens ‘connect with tech,’ but have gone beyond a mere reach-out to seniors. We’ve also started discussion panels with parents.”

In her closing remarks, Board President Lisa Faries sent the students off to school with “We look forward to seeing you all grow and shine.”

  • Robin Jovanovich


#0920 Executive Director Diane Rosenthal

#0953 Penelope “Penny” Dean received the Feffi Stiassni Memorial Award from Margot and Sandy Stiassni.

#0933 Cheryl Flood presented the Deane Flood Spirit Award to Ellen Scully.

#0948 The recipient of the September 11th Memorial Award, presented by Andi Hessekial, was Matthew Zar.

#0928 Alec Jautz

#0946 Sorcha McCrohan sharing a moment with Emilie Murphy Nimocks, who presented her with the Suzanne Murphy Memorial Scholarship Award.

#0938 Spencer Hunt, winner of the Rye Youth Council Award, flanked by Casey DeCola and Lisa Faries.

#0936 Leslie Gutelius received the Dick Murdoch Legacy Award from Sarah Bowen, Rev. Murdoch’s daughter.

#0929 Dylan Senkiw with Shari Balaish, who presented him with the Janice C. Pierce Award.

#0958 Kristin Jautz with Sandra “Sunny” Sousa, recipient of the Lorraine Levinson Speak Out for Social Justice Award

#0956 Ethan Sears with Kelley Somerville, who presented him with the Karena Somerville Award.

#0971 Zach Samberg, recipient of the Gail Harrison Roman/Rye Arts Center Award, with from left: RAC Executive Director Meg Rodriguez, his mom Sandy, Lisa Faries, and Gail Roman

#0966 It was a doubly good morning for Matthew Zar, who also won the Rye YMCA Scholarship Award, presented to him by Gregg Howells.

#0973 Ellen Scully with her proud mom, Caroline


The Rye Neck High School Mock Trial Team won the 2017 Westchester County Champions. They are headed to the regional competition on Saturday at Pace Law School to face the Duchess and Orange County winners.

“I was always optimistic about our team’s chances, but our students are even better than I could have hoped,” said Rye Neck history teacher and mock trial team coach Marcella Scalise.