Sara Foss

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Conservation groups aim to cushion birds from a solar power boom

The winter light is just beginning to fade. On this brisk February evening, a half-dozen birders are bundled up and scanning an open expanse of state land in upstate New York. They’re waiting for the marquee attraction: Short-eared Owls, elegant raptors that fly with distinctive, mothlike movements in search of prey.  This gathering place for owl-seekers is

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Coalition addresses ‘period poverty’ in Schenectady

The old newspaper vending box has been remade, painted purple and decorated with pictures and words that proclaim its purpose to all who pass by. The phases of the moon, encircled by a wreath of flowers, painted in crisp black-and-white. A uterus. An assortment of period products, hearts and teardrops floating around a statement: “Menstrual hygiene is a human right.”

The contents of the box, called a period pantry, reflect this spirit. Inside is a neatly-sorted array of menstrual supplies, all free and available 24-7. Anyone can take what they need, no questions asked. So far, demand appears to be high: The box I visited, at 839 Albany Street in Schenectady’s Hamilton Hill neighborhood, was emptied out in just a week.

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Proctors to screen documentary on controversial 2000s Albany terrorism prosecution

The story of Yassin Aref and Mohammed Hossain is well known in the Capital Region. Arrested in 2004 in a dramatic FBI terrorism sting in downtown Albany, the men were accused of taking part in a plot to assassinate a Pakistani diplomat in New York City. Several years later, they were convicted of money laundering and terrorism-related charges and sentenced to 15 years in prison. Yet the arrests were controversial almost from the start, with friends and relatives insisting the two men were innocent and many coming to believe they were wrongfully prosecuted.

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DakhaBrakha concert in Schenectady a must-see event

The Ukrainian folk band DakhaBrakha defies easy categorization – yes, it’s folk music but with elements of punk, jazz, drone and dance that shifts quickly and suddenly from fist-pumping, high-energy harmonies to slow, mournful ballads. The band has long served as ambassadors for Ukrainian music and culture – I discovered them in 2016, when the rapturous

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New Schenectady sculpture park celebrates art and culture of African diaspora

The Sankofa Sculpture Park sits on a formerly blighted parcel of land in Schenectady’s Hamilton Hill neighborhood. The garbage and run-down buildings that once marred the site have been replaced with art celebrating the culture of the African diaspora, while also expanding the footprint of a longtime non-profit organization, the Hamilton Hill Arts Center. A project several

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Saying good-bye

After nearly two decades at The Daily Gazette, I’m undergoing something of a realignment myself.

I need a change – to do new things and see new things, to get out and explore the world. 

I want to visit with people I haven’t seen very much during the past year and a half, and a young son I want to spend a little more time with this summer. 

All of which is a roundabout way of saying that this is my final column for The Daily Gazette. 

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