The Villager

Bristol Harbour Village Association

December 2022

Be Kind - I saw this simple wooden sign my first day in Johannesburg, South Africa, outside a courthouse on Constitution Hill. So I started thinking. How do I want to be this holiday season? I came up with this incomplete list.

I choose to BE:

Kind, Patient, Aware, Open, Joyful, Honest, Tolerant, Hopeful, Creative, Generous, Helpful, Playful, Accepting, Considerate, Grateful, Childlike, in Awe,

and at Peace.

What would you like to add?

When I began writing this Villager, I asked for submissions from the BHV Community and Voila, many interesting ones arrived. Here's hoping you will cuddle up with your afghans and enjoy this edition of the Villager.

Darren Bressennel took the above fairytale photo of our community center.

It has never looked this beautiful. Laurie Reidman, a new resident on Terrace Drive, tells us about the Danish concept of Hygge, a way to slow down during the winter months. Sharon Sands sent a holiday recipe, Shelly Gerstner explains the tradition behind the hat and mitten tree. Jon Link introduces Mattie Bicknell, a longtime resident of Bristol Harbour Village and the Canandaigua Lake area. Additional articles in this Villager are written by Doug Llewellyn, Liz Smith, Ellen Beck, "Rudy", Lisa Moore with the Bristol Library, and Ron Bailey.

I would be remiss if I didn't mention the recent passing of two "elder statesmen" who lived in our community for over two decades: Bob Hotchkiss and Dave Eldon. Bob and his wife Carolyn lived on Lochcrest Circle. Bob was a past Commodore of the Bristol Harbour Yacht Club and his wife Carolyn was active in our community and had one of the most beautiful gardens in the Village. Dave's wife Sally, who predeceased Dave, was a past BHV Board President. They both were very involved in the building of our Community Center. Our thoughts and prayers are with these families at this difficult time.

Life can turn when one least expects it, so treasure every instant.

May each moment of your holidays have a beauty all its own.

Happy Holidays,

Patricia King (editor)

Editor's notes: Bristol Harbour Village website coming soon! Stay Tuned!

Article on recycling at the bottom of this Villager.

Please for 2023 read the HOA Rules on how to recycle and what to do with yard debris.

If you have ideas or suggestions for upcoming Villagers, contact me at the email address above.


BHVA Board of Directors

Gloria Harrington - President

Alexis Ortiz Heaney - Treasurer

Patricia King - Secretary

Hannah Snyder - Contributing Member

Ginny Lalka - Environmental Committee Chair

John Schultes- Facilities

John Constance - Contributing Member

Gina Sarkis Cushing - Contributing Member

Dave Richardson - Contributing Member

Have a Happy Hygge Holiday! by Laurie Riedman

Have a Happy Hygge Holiday! by Laurie Reidman

A few years ago, during what I refer to as “The Great Pause,” aka Pandemic shutdown, I came across the concept of Hygge. It has since gotten quite popular as it relates to creating a warm and cozy lifestyle that the Danish culture attributes to making them the world’s happiest people.

Hygge (pronounced HOO GAH), loosely translated, means well-being. As a life and relationship coach, I use hygge to help clients recognize what “fills their cup” with happiness so they can face life's challenging moments more easily. If we “fill our cups” with self-care, moments, little rituals, people, and activities that give us comfort, we can more easily navigate the more challenging times in life. And let’s face it, our Finger Lakes Winters are sometimes a bit difficult.

So here are a few ideas of how you can get your hygge on this winter:

 Hygge indoors:

  • Take a look at where you most spend your time in the winter. Create coziness. A few ideas:
  • Add a fluffy warm throw and soft pillows on your couch.
  • Use soft lighting and candles, and if you have a fireplace – use it!
  • Wear your favorite well-worn sweater, fuzzy socks, or comfy slippers. Ask for soft, luxurious, unrestrictive clothing as a holiday gift from a loved one. 
  • Declutter your space. Why not do this slowly during winter so your space will be fresh and clutter-free for spring? When we make space, we can then notice with purpose our favorite things because there is less clutter surrounding them. 
  • Make a list of the things that bring you comfort and happiness. Post this list somewhere handy so that when and if the winter blues hit – you can easily pick an item from the list and do it for a lovely hygge pick-me-up. I call this my Happy Hygge a la carte list. (HINT: my list includes making a lovely cup of tea or coffee, putting on some homemade socks a friend of mine knit for me, and sitting by the fire, curled up to read, listen to a favorite playlist or watch a show on Netflix. Oh, I also love baking homemade goodness and giving them away!

Hygge Outside:

The Danes say, “There is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing.” Bundle up and get outside to enjoy the beauty of the winter. 

  • Go for a walk with a friend. 
  • Bundle up with a cup of your favorite hot beverage and watch the sunrise (or set).
  • Try snowshoeing at Cummings Nature Center or cross-country skiing at Bristol Mountain. 
  • Have a snowball fight with a child – or a friend! Bonus if you dare to make snow angels! 
  • Decorate your entrance to offer a warm welcome to guests. 

Hygge reminds me that happiness isn’t found in stuff, and I think of hygge as a gift to myself and others as we savor simple moments filled with good food, conversation, and company.

I hope this helps you add a little hygge happiness to your holidays! 

For more information on hygge, check out the many books on the subject. Have a happy hygge holiday!

Important Phone numbers

FF Thompson Hospital - 585-396-6000

Kenrick - 585-424-1540

Bristol Water - 585-204-6754

Bristol Sewer - 585-532-6136

RG&E - 800-743-2112

Spectrum - 888-406-70

Town of South Bristol - 585-374-6341

Frontier Communication - 800-921-8101

Marine Docks - 585-789-0015

Sweet and Spicy Candied Nuts:

recipe courtesy of Sharon Sands

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread 2 cups of nuts (pecans are ideal, but anything works) on a baking sheet. (I recommend lining with parchment paper for easy clean up). Toast the nuts until fragrant and beginning to brown, about 10 minutes.

Melt 1 Tablespoon butter, then mix with 3 Tablespoons brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1 Tablespoon honey and 1 teaspoon salt (adjust if the nuts are already salted). Mix hot nuts with butter mixture, return to baking sheet and continue baking for 10 minutes, stirring every so often. Remove from the oven and let cool, then break apart.

Spotlight on Mattie Bicknell, Bristol Harbour Historian

Introducing Mattie Bicknell by Jon Link

Mattie Bicknell made an intriguing comparison. We were talking about community in the literal sense - feelings of fellowship, common interests, common attitudes, common goals - when she told me about connections she had made decades ago while serving as an army officer's wife in Hawaii. Being an officer’s wife involved roles, obligations, responsibilities. It was “a military family” to which “you were automatically a member.” The connections formed there, Mattie explained, were deep and enduring. “I am still connected with them.” When Mattie’s husband resigned his commission and they moved into a neighborhood in Anytown USA, that attendant sense of community and belonging was suddenly missing. But that has not been Mattie’s experience in Bristol Harbour. For Mattie, Bristol Harbour is a “microcosm” where connections like those in the army officers corps run deep and where friendships are lasting.

The summer of 1993 found Mattie living at a family property off Coye Road (now Logan Lane) just north of Black Point. The cottage there was not suitable for winter, so by January Mattie bought a townhouse on Golfside Circle.  

Through her open windows on Golfside, Mattie recalls hearing the vibrant sounds of tennis rising up and outward from the courts below. Mattie is athletic by nature. Prior to her arrival at Bristol Harbour she had taught both swimming and tennis, and had been a phys ed assistant. The 90s were “wonderful years here for tennis…socially, athletically” and in short order Mattie stepped right in. “I became quite involved in tennis. It was big at that time; lots of tournaments all summer long, and festivities surrounding [the game].” There was even youth coaching. Mattie likens the Bristol Harbour tennis community in those years to pickleball today. (One has to wonder whether pickleball would be here now if Fred Sarkis hadn’t built the tennis courts in the 1970s.)

From participation in the tennis “community,” Mattie decided to join the recreation committee. By ‘97 she was serving as its chair. A key responsibility in this role involved reporting off to the board. So Mattie, who already knew a lot about contribution and service, went a step further and in ‘98 joined the board for a 5 year term. As Mattie recalls “I was attending meetings, so I might as well have a voice.” Then in 2002 Mattie became board president.

If Mattie reflects on her years at Bristol Harbour, I suspect she does so with a feeling of satisfaction. “I’ve pulled my weight, and done my share.” Though her days on the board were behind her, Mattie jumped in again to assist with plans to commemorate Bristol Harbour’s 50th anniversary. A historical advisory committee was formed, and it was decided that a book should be created to encapsulate BHV history. From a trove of archival material, Mattie “compiled” a 116 page memory book of sorts. The book contains a wealth of newspaper clippings, Villager articles, maps, diagrams and photos covering more than 30 years at Bristol Harbour. Take a look and you'll see pictures of Bobby Riggs and Jack Nicholas. Mattie quickly and humbly confessed that the book would not have been possible without material from Bernice Caprini. “Bernie Caprini has been here since the very beginning, and she had lots of records.” A Window Into the Past – 1973-2003 is dedicated to Bernice.  

Mattie is a contemplative and curious person. She enjoys good conversation and is a lover of  history. Mattie’s living room is a marvelous setting for the exchange of ideas. The room is bright with cathedral ceilings and lots of glass. Mattie's ample wall space is put to good use displaying art, artifacts, antiques and memorabilia. No box store kitsch here. There is a story to every object. Nautical objects caught my eye and Mattie revealed that they are remnants from her parents' 26’ wooden Richardson cabin cruiser. A wheel that was on the outside deck hangs over Mattie’s fireplace. Several portholes serve as photo frames. Cleats are now coat hooks. Cowlings have been fashioned into bookends. Mattie has wonderful memories of cruising as far as Fire Island with her family on The “Martha” boat, named after her mother.

Today, Mattie is “steeped” in family history and there is a great deal available to her. Her paternal grandparents were medical Presbyterian missionaries in China. Her grandmother wrote about her experiences there in a book titled Little Stories of China. Her mother’s father, Joseph Allen Skinner, was a very successful silk manufacturer in Massachusetts and a major benefactor to Mount Holyoke College and the surrounding region. Mattie enjoys memoir writing. She is particularly proud of one she titled: My Experiences as an Officer's Wife - the First Ten Years. And she plans to keep at it. “I want to pass it on to my family - my three children, 4 grandchildren and one great-grandchild.”   

Any introduction to Mattie would not be complete without mentioning that her love of the past includes an admirable appreciation of natural history as well. On her coffee table is a bowl filled with an assortment of devonian fossils discovered near here. And on her front step and in her gardens you'll find a marvelous collection of concretions, curiously undulating formations also found locally.

Mattie loves her home by the lake. “It’s a beautiful area, it really is. It’s a gem that a lot of people don’t know about.” And the Village? Mattie describes today’s BHV as “very alive” and full of “creative initiative. It’s exciting to see that. I wouldn’t live any place else.”

Jon Link

Naples Food Pantry Update by Liz Smith

A dedicated core of BHV Volunteers has been helping keep the Naples Open Cupboard supplied with delivery day helpers and needed groceries. Three targeted donation events were held this past spring, summer and fall. Kudos to volunteers Vicki Carlisle, Cindy Merrill, Bella Stahl, Deb Cortese, Cathy Colby and Nancy Gerstner for their dedicated service, plus to so many others who have consistently filled the donation baskets in the Community Center. A big "shout out" to the BHV Bottles & Cans group who made a sizable donation to our Thanksgiving Meal Box project. Thank you to all and know that your contributions are filling a gap in the lives of over 180 families in our area.

As a final request this year, we are asking for several items that the food pantry needs as it heads into the last month of the year. Due to the Christmas holidays, the pantry is receiving only one Foodlink delivery in December, so it is looking for several food items---peanut butter and jam/jelly. Baby wipes are in short supply and the need for winter clothing for all ages continues. We welcome any donations and will be monitoring the pantry baskets in the foyer of the Community Center throughout the month. Thanks for your continued support. 

If you have any questions, please contact Liz Smith at:

Hat/Mitten Tree… Background on Operation Santa

by Shelly Gerstner 

Thank you to all the residents who donated hats/mittens to our tree this holiday season, we truly have a very generous community! For those of you who are new to the neighborhood, here is the background info on Operation Santa!

Over 70 years ago, Pauline McKenna, a school nurse, and Pauline Moscato, an elementary school teacher, decided to provide for children in the community who were not able to have bright and happy holiday seasons. Their selfless actions began a Naples tradition that has continued ever since.

Last year, through the generous contributions of area businesses and residents, more than 60 families received clothing, books, toys and food coupons, and over 50 senior citizens were remembered with fruit baskets. 

A student committee of 10th – 12th grade students volunteer for this program every year. Every dollar helps to make the holiday better for those who are less fortunate in our community.

Shelly Gerstner's commented that "the tree was overflowing this year with so many fun items! This community definitely wins the "Generosity Award"!"

If you missed the Hat/Mitten Tree in the community center but you would still like to donate, check donations should be made out to “Operation Santa” and sent to Operation Santa, Naples Central School, 2 Academy St., Naples, NY 14512.

Santa, December 12 at 6 pm


The Bristol Library

Library Book and Craft Sale

Now - December 23, 2022

6750 County Road #32 - Bristol Center - Canandaigua , NY 14424

The Bristol Library is part of the OWWL library system (Ontario, Wayne, Wyoming Livingston). You’ll find books, audiobooks, videos, as well as access to the Internet. Check out our online catalog and select Bristol Library to find something good to read.  Or come and say, hi. 

A lot is happening at the Bristol Library. Come be part of the fun!


EUCHRE, every Thursday, 3PM-5PM

NAPLES WEAVERS’S GUILD, second Saturday of every month, 10AM-12PM

KNIT & STITCH for some conversation, coffee, and crafting. Bring your current project, whether it’s knitting or crochet, cross stitch or embroidery.


Bring your children or grandchildren to meet Santa at the Bristol Library for story time and pictures! No registration required. All are welcome!


Bristol Library is about 15 minutes away from Bristol Harbor Village. You’ll find Adult, YA, children’s, board books, sticker books… we’ve got quite a spread. You’ll also find adorable, unique, and awesome works from nine local artists, including hand-knit children's hats, scarves, and sweaters, handmade wooden benches and walking sticks, torch-fired earrings, and more. Come check us out! Shop local this holiday season! Support your local library. 


The holidays can be stressful as well as joyful. Destress and spark joy … 

EXPLORE YOUR INNER ARTIST. Wednesday, December 14, 3PM-5PM, Introduction to Sketching with Howard Van Buren, signature member of the Central New York Watercolor Society, member of the National Watercolor Society, American Watercolor Society, New England Watercolor Society, and the Ontario County Arts Council. Pencils, sketchbooks, erasers and a straightedge will be provided. $25 per person includes all materials. Payable at the door. We accept cash and checks. 

Register here.

EXPLORE YOUR INNER WRITER. Saturday, December 17, 2PM-3:30PM, Writing Workshop with Piety Exley, recent Literature & Creative Writing graduate and Bristol Library Director. Have no fear—in this workshop, everyone will be given a (fun) prompt at the beginning, then there will be time to write, and those who would like to share at the end will be welcome to do so. Free.

Registration is requested.

The Bristol Library wishes each and all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

  You can sign up for a library card with a quick visit to the library or online at Be sure and indicate Bristol Library is your home library.  

Follow Bristol Library on Facebook (

Visit Bristol Library website ( to sign up for the monthly newsletter.

Library Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday 3 -7 p.m.

 Tuesday, Saturday 10 a.m. - 2 p.m

Closed December 24-26 and December 31

DVD and CD Donation

Now that winter is approaching, more people will be staying inside and probably watching movies and streaming their favorite TV series. The Villager is putting out a call for residents to donate DVD movies that they are no longer watching. Residents can drop off the DVDs at the Community Center Library to be sorted and shelved. Residents can also donate music CDs as well. All DVDs and CDs are on a separate shelf in the library. Hopefully, we can build a collection of 100 movies and CD musical discs for the community to enjoy.

i am by ron bailey

i am

a vee of skeaning geese

furrows early winter sunrise

over farms cattle widows and wives

woven in tradition’s burlap fabric

i am

tight as oxen lurch

against their leather harness

drag plows through earth

filled with cold root and stone


by Ellen Beck

Dawn Sargent leading a singalong

Gift Exchange led by Sue and George Issgrigg

The Bristol Harbour Village Yacht Club held its annual holiday party on Saturday evening, December 3rd, in the Bristol Harbour Community Center. The community center looked very festive, and many thanks to members of the Recreation Committee who helped decorate. 

During the afternoon, the area was besieged with high winds, which knocked out the power for nearly 1½ hours to the entire Bristol Harbour community as well as hundreds of other RG&E customers in Ontario, Monroe, Livingston and Allegheny counties. Fortunately, power was restored approximately 4:00pm which was a relief as we had a guest list of 45 people and no satisfactory Plan B.

The evening began with flutes of Prosecco and Asti Spumante sparkling wine, and shrimp cocktail and bruschetta in the Caprini Great Room. The group then transitioned to the Titus Room for dinner.

Rear Commodore Joe Charlton welcomed the group. He introduced Vice Commodore Will Kim, and mentioned that others are needed to assist with BHYC social events. The Club is in need of a Social Committee Chair. Joe also announced that the BHYC would begin the 2023 year with its annual Welcome Back Brunch to be held at the Canandaigua Yacht Club on Sunday, June 11th. In closing, Joe conveyed news of the recent passing of Past-Commodore and former longtime Bristol Harbour resident, Robert (Bob) Hotchkiss. 

This followed with a drawing of door prizes consisting of the floral centerpieces as well as the drawing of the 50-50 raffle, conducted by Treasurer George Isgrigg, who gleefully peppered his audience with Dad jokes. The BHYC had designated its portion to be donated to the Naples Food Cupboard, and winner Nancy Lamberson also generously donated her portion, amounting to $112 total for the food cupboard. Also, in the spirit of giving back, many brought hats, gloves and scarves for the Bristol Harbour hat and mitten tree.  

The guests then enjoyed a delicious buffet dinner prepared by Casa de Pasta: Chicken French, shaved prime rib with mushroom gravy, mashed potatoes, fresh green beans, garden salad with balsamic dressing, and pasta salad and rolls & butter, accompanied by BYOB beverages. There were chocolate chip cookies and coffee for dessert. 

The guests then retired to the Caprini Great Room where Dawn Sargent led a sing-a-long of holiday songs. Next it was time for the FUN and HILARIOUS gift exchange, overseen by Santa and Mrs. Claus (George and Suzanne Isgrigg). There were a number of amusing gifts, notably a cute PASS THE PIGS game, and a bag of rocks…wait for it… buried inside was a gift certificate to local favorite, A’s Diner and Desserts!

Thank you to everyone who was able to join us, and special thanks to those who helped with the event. We look forward to next year.

A Happy Holiday Wish from Pat Dugan's dog Rudy

Hi it’s me Rudy!

I don’t know if you got the official press release, but there has been a reorganization at the Dugan Ranch:

Dublin has been promoted to Chief of Security at Maeve’s house in West Irondequoit. His duties include securing the perimeter and maintaining security over number 7 ranch hand- Owen.

I will backfill Dublin as Chief of Operation here in Bristol Harbour. I asked Ranch Mom and head of HR why I was bypassed for the promotion. She told me, Rudy, you have to earn your spots.Hmmm…. Have you seen me lately?

I took my first business trip in my new position to be oriented for the job. I met with my cousin Bruce who lives in Duckbury MA. Most of the trip we played together for hours on end. But then we got down to business and I shadowed him in the role. I feel ready to assume my new duties.

My Dad and I go for long walks and have great conversations. Around the holidays he gets a little philosophical. Yesterday he told me he wishes he was me sometimes because I always am enjoying the Beauty of the present. He doesn’t understand why you Humans always have one foot in the past and one in the future. Anyway, it’s just guy talk over a biscut.

I wish you all a Happy Holiday and ask you please just be kind to all my dog friends and humans too- “ it’s easy if you try”.

See you around. 


Rudy and Bruce

Top Photo - Dublin and Owen

Bottom photo - a relaxing day for the pups. Photos courtesy of Pat Dugan

Academy Cemetery by Doug Llewellyn

Undoubtedly, you have driven by this site countless times, seldom giving it much thought. The spot? The small, fenced-in Academy Cemetery. The Cemetery is located just north of Bristol Harbour, on the corner of Seneca Point Road and Old West Lake Road. Originally privately operated, the cemetery is now owned and maintained by the Town of Canandaigua. Here you will find historic graves of veterans from the Revolutionary War, War of 1812, Civil War, and the two World Wars. Most of the headstones' engravement can be easily read, but others have nearly vanished, eroded by the passage of time.  

At the entrance of the cemetery, there is a large stone, erected in 1923, that dedicates the land as the final resting place of the many Canandaigua Civil War veterans. It states, "erected by the citizens of Canandaigua under the leadership of Henry C. Beeman (1847-1927), Company C, 15th N.Y. Cav, 1862-1865."  

Academy Cemetery is a hallowed place to visit, especially on Veterans Day, where you can pay respect to others who have fought and died for our liberties.

For a listing of those buried there, see:

Can you guess what these ornaments are made of? A hint, my friend Karen who visited this summer used a glue gun and cracked ___________, plus glitter, sequins, buttons, etc. to make this amazing tree. Karen lives in Safety Harbor, FL and has a collection of over 50 large and small Christmas trees in her home.

 Redeemable Cans and Bottles report by Marilyn Noffsinger

Over the summer a total of $800 was donated to Naples Open Cupboard , $200 to Alzheimer's, and $200 to Operation Santa (Naples School District) in December. This $1,200 represents a total of 24,000 cans redeemed by BH residents.


Thanks go to Bella and Kevin Stahl for taking over the project during the late fall, winter, and early spring! The Stahls make weekly trips to town to redeem the cans and bottles while the Noffsingers are away. Special thanks to other BH volunteers Holly Parzych, Linda Bergquist, Deb Cortese, Darren Brennessel and their helpers for sorting.

Please note: The recycling bins remain a problem. The Stalls, who have taken over this project from Marilyn and Tim Noffsinger, during the winter, have been digging out plants, food and all kinds of garbage that people are throwing in. They have swept up broken glass and garbage from the floor....people break things and expect others to pick up after them....there are still plastic garbage bags, styrofoam, and bubble wrap going into recycling too!

Look at the sign and pay attention! Twigs and limbs are also being left by the side of the road. All yard debris needs to be taken to the town for disposal.

Recycling Rule 101 - 

No Plastic Bags

No Food either!

To all: please sort out the contents of all plastic bags and place things in one of the designated areas -

  1. cardboard ( flattened), 
  2. trash/ garbage down the chute, recyclables in bins
  3. 5 cent redeemables along the wall. Lastly, please THROW THE PLASTIC BAG DOWN the CHUTE!