Category Archives: News

November 2013 Meeting

Onondaga Lake Cleanup Sign

An Inside Look at the Onondaga Lake Cleanup

Go on a field trip with CNY Skeptics!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013, 7:00 PM
Onondaga Lake Visitors Center
280 Restoration Way
Geddes, NY 13209

The Onondaga Lake Visitors Center gives the community a chance to experience and learn about the lake cleanup firsthand. The center was designed and built by Honeywell to provide public access to the significant work taking place by hundreds of scientists, engineers, and skilled craft laborers from this region.

Presenter Bio: John McAuliffe is Honeywell’s Syracuse program director with responsibility for Honeywell activities being conducted on Onondaga Lake and associated sites. He is a lifelong resident of Central New York.

Please join us for an inside look at the cleanup process.

This even is free and open to the public.

September 2013 Meeting

“Let’s Be Friends: A Skeptic Embraces the Paranormal,” a presentation by Kitty Mervine

Kitty can’t make it to the September meeting, but we will reschedule her visit to later in our program year.

Instead, come see Bryce Hand on

The “Magic” of Crystals

Bryce Hand at Bald Mt. Tower in 2006

Wednesday, September 18, 2013, 7:00 PM
Community Room at the Manlius Library
1 Arkie Albanese Ave.
Manlius, NY 13104

About Bryce’s presentation, in his own words:

“Sorry, folks, but I won’t offer to cure your arthritis, rheumatism, or athlete’s foot, align your chakras, or tune the vibrational rates of your auras.

“Such amazing mystical and magical properties that get ascribed to crystals would be more amusing if they weren’t actually believed by so many people. But these I’ll pass quickly — however disappointingly — because there’s so much to be said and shown about the real world of real crystals.

“Those strikingly beautiful forms we call “crystals” owe practically all of what we admire to the regular arrangement of their component atoms, yet only a hundred years have passed since this became known with certainty. We’ll explore some of the mechanisms by which crystals self-assemble, ways we determine their atomic arrangements, methods for identifying different minerals, and why it is that we’re able to use a particular chemical substance (like carbon) for such astoundingly different purposes, depending entirely on its structural form.”

Bryce Hand, Ph.D., is emeritus professor of Geology at Syracuse University and a long-time member of CNY Skeptics.

March 2013 Meeting

Photo of Karen Schwarz
Karen Schwarz, “The Myths and Magic of Hypnosis”
Wednesday, March 20, 2013, 7 PM
DeWitt Library at Shoppingtown Mall

The Talk
Karen Schwarz will speak about the myths and magic of hypnosis and hypnotherapy. Karen will discuss the issues for which hypnosis is useful as well as those for which it is not, what makes someone a good – or bad – candidate for hypnosis, the history of hypnosis, why hypnosis has a “bad rap”, and more. Karen welcomes questions.

The Speaker
Karen Schwarz is a practicing psychotherapist with twenty-eight years of experience in the private and public sector. She received 210 hours in hypnosis training at the American Hypnosis Training Academy in Maryland, is a National Board Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist, and has been using hypnosis in her practice, along with traditional therapy, since 2006. She is also a recipient of hypnosis and credits it with helping her win a 1987 National Powerlifting Championship.

2012 Greater Syracuse Scholastic Science Fair

The CNY Skeptics judging team attended the GSSSF, reviewed science fair projects, chose projects for awards, and encouraged elementary, middle, and high school students to pursue their interests in science. The team presented ten students with awards.

2012 GSSSF Results

Effects of Noise on Rat Performance, Ana Li Kreidler-Siwinski, 5th grade Skeptic magazine award, Edward Smith Elementary

Photo of science fair project Will Gum Lose Mass When Chewed

Will Gum Lose Mass When it is Chewed?, Peter Assaf, 5th grade book award, Holy Family School

Amazing Race: Soybean Style, Julia Justafson, 6th grade Skeptic magazine award, Homer Intermediate School

A Tale of Taxonomy, Martin Welch-Flanagan, 6th grade book award, The New School

Do big parking lots affect water quality?, Joanna Bryant, 7th grade Skeptic magazine award, Manlius-Pebble Hill School

How Does Caffeine Effect Human Performance?, Joe Vanable, 7th grade book award, Edward Smith Elementary School

Store Brand vs. Name Brand, Hannah Cofer, 7th grade Skeptic magazine award, Edward Smith Elementary School

The Phantom, Marisa Hurst & Adrianne Milea, 8th grade book award, West Genesee Middle School

Photo of science fair project Wind Vane Pitch Angl2

Wind Vane Pitch Angle, Olivia Sheppard, Senior Skeptic magazine award, Manlius-Pebble Hill

Photo of science fair project Modeling Environmental Analysis of Hydraulic Fracturing in Upstate NY

Modeling Environmental Analysis of Hydraulic Fracturing in Upstate New York, Kunal Sangani, Senior book award, Fayetteville-Manlius Senior High School