By Annette McLoughlin

Stories about achievement and the underlying values required to overcome obstacles got top billing at Rye Middle School’s recent annual expo, “The Challenge of Excellence.”

The day began with uplifting talks from two inspiring keynote speakers: Emmy Award-winning NBC sportscaster Jimmy Roberts and former NY Giant Patrick Morrison.

After the general presentations, students were released to a day of breakout sessions. They were able to choose from a long and impressive list of professionals, athletes, and artists including: Rye police officers, RMS teachers, an FBI agent (also a RHS graduate,) a Broadway actor, a Broadway director, an artist, a nutritionist, a yoga instructor, a World Cup and Olympic soccer player, and an Academy Award-winning animator and director.

Guest speakers described how they were able to overcome personal hurdles and achieve success through resilience, perseverance, and integrity. They emphasized the importance of empathy and gratitude when looking for fulfillment and happiness, and they encouraged students to think about ways they can be inclusive and community-oriented.

Rye High School stuck to tradition with their recent sold-out production of “Fiddler on the Roof” under Tom Snowden’s fine direction. The musical, based on Sholem Aleichem tales of poor Jewish families living in settlements in pre-revolutionary Russia, is rich in strong-minded characters and memorable music (“Matchmaker, Matchmaker,” “If I Were a Rich Man,” “Sunrise, Sunset”). Over 80 students were involved in the lively production.


Photos by Anne and Joel Darelius

Osborn School celebrates its diverse international student body every year in a colorful and educational event, Around the World at Osborn. This year’s special day highlighted 15 countries and was enjoyed by 623 students.

The children and many of their parents brought the school community closer to the traditions, celebrations, geography, clothing, currency, language, music, and games of their home countries. And all that traveling without leaving the campus.

— Annette McLoughlin

Talented teens brought a variety of musical and theatrical acts to Rye Country Day School’s Dunn Performing Arts Center stage March 11. The occasion was The Rye City Lions Club fourth annual “Rye’s Got Talent.”

The Master of Ceremonies was Noam Ben Yakir, Rye High class of 2013. Curently a student at Macaulay Honors College at Hunter College, he is the Stage Manager of the Westchester Sandbox Theater.

The esteemed panel of judges was comprised of Meg Rodriguez (Rye Arts Center Executive Director), Bernard Tamosaitis (cellist and member of Canta Libra chamber ensemble), and Stanislav Kotyza (opera singer, construction company owner and co-founder of the nonprofit Harmony Foundation).

And best yet, proceeds from the event were donated to Guiding Eyes and Vacation Camp for the Blind.

Photos by Anja Porto

#7507 Rye Lions Club President Chris Shoemaker welcomed a big crowd.

#7606 Katie Rogers and Elizabeth Riccio performing an original dance composition to the tune of “Try Everything” from the film “Zootopia.”

#7517 Lauren Salamon sang Adele’s “Turning Tables”

#7549 Daniel Pellegrini with a number from the Broadway hit, “Dear Evan Hansen”

#7645 Violinist Alex Marino performed <5th Air Varie on a Theme by Karl Weigl, Opus 89, No. 5>

#7521 Male members of Rye High’s a cappella group, Rhythm on Rye

#7768 The Rhythm on Rye girls

#7671 Charlotte Burchetta performed Carrie Underwood’s “All American Girl.”

#7672 Hannah and Jonathan Lloyd performing a cello medley from the “Star Wars” soundtrack.

#7821 Pianist Hikari Tomizawa being congratulated after winning one of the competitions.


By Mitch Silver

The singer Jerry Reed put the phrase to music more than 40 years ago: “When you’re hot, you’re hot. When you’re not, you’re not.” The Rye Boys’ Basketball team was definitely <not> last Thursday night. The sixth-seeds from Albertus Magnus led nearly all the way against the home-standing Garnets in the Section 1 quarterfinals and punched their ticket to the Final Four at the County Center, ending the season for the No. 3 Garnets.

Simply put, the locals couldn’t put the biscuit in the basket. Shooting guard and career 1,000-point scorer Charlie Nagle not only missed all his three-point efforts, the usually rock-steady All-Section performer missed four free throws on the evening. Certainly, the wallop he took in the third quarter that knocked the air out of him and kept him down on the floor for over a minute didn’t help. And Nagle did lead his team with 16 points, scoring several layups after his patented knock-the-ball-loose-from-behind steals on defense.

Unfortunately, Nagle’s shooting woes seemed to infect the other starters. Michael Carty scored eight points, making one of three from the foul line. Center Seamus McCrohan had three baskets, and Brett Egan was shut out. Only Max Samberg brought his A game to the Class A playoffs, hitting three trifectas while scoring 13 points for the Garnets. A.J. Thompson sank the only other Rye three in the second quarter.

Meanwhile, the other 1,000-point scorer on the floor Falcons’ swingman Justin Bullock led all scorers with 17, including a couple of key buckets down the stretch. Senior guard Collin Crispino added 14 points, seven rebounds, and four assists, and big man Connor Parahus (aptly pronounced “Powerhouse”) scored 11.

Still, with all their woes, Rye nosed in front late in the game. After trailing 16-10 after the first quarter, 27-25 at the half, and 44-39 after three, the Garnets found themselves up 48-47 when Samberg and Carty hit back-to-back contested baskets with six minutes left.

A couple of Falcon free throws made it 49-48. Carty missed a three, but alertly got back on defense to knock the ball away from Parahus as he drove for a lay-up. With the game winding down, Nagle airmailed a three-point try with the score 53-49. A Bullock score stretched the lead to six before Carty, with six rebounds for the game, and Samberg brought the Garnets back. Samberg’s step-back three from the right wing made it 55-54 with 24 seconds left.

After trying for the steal, Rye fouled Cameron McGrath. He missed the front end of a one-and-one and Samberg would end up missing a last-gasp effort in the paint. Parahus came down with his 13th rebound and the Falcons’ celebration began in the middle of the court.

Coach John Aguilar’s 16-6 Garnets shot just 4 for 24 from 3-point range and missed seven free throws in their last game of the season. The coach took the loss in stride.

It was very tough to come inches away from the County Center, but what the seniors have accomplished over the last two years has been remarkable, winning 32 games. I wouldn’t change a thing.”

Except, maybe, he’d have that final Garnet shot go in.