This past weekend was full of good things to know, and here are five of them:
1. The Albany Common Council considers proposal regarding the use of tear gas
A number of Albany officials have released a joint statement on the proposed tear gas ban currently being considered by the Albany Common Council. Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, Common Council President Corey Ellis, and City Treasurer Darius Shahinfar say they oppose an outright ban, but back extra restrictions on the use of tear gas.
The group point out that, although some members of the city’s policing collaborative urged the city to find alternatives to tear gas and other current non-lethal methods, no viable alternatives to tear gas were proposed.
Mayor Kathy Sheehan and Chief Eric Hawkins held a press briefing at on Friday concerning what they call a ‘riot’ at the Albany Police South Station on Wednesday. Surveillance and body-worn camera footage were shown at the news conference.
Chief Eric Hawkins and Mayor Kathy Sheehan said the officers’ actions were justified by police after reviewing footage from a protest Wednesday that escalated to what they’re now calling a riot.
2. Restaurant hours are expanded in New York
Beginning April 19, restaurants and bars across the state will be able to keep their doors open an extra hour, with the curfew on these businesses extended from 11 p.m. to midnight.
3. North and South Colonie School Districts host a COVID vaccination event for eligible students
Amidst a county-wide push to get more teenage students vaccinated, a pod at Colonie Central High School vaccinated hundreds of North and South Colonie students Saturday. The clinic was a collaboration between both school districts, Town of Colonie EMS and the county. Both superintendents say it’s an important effort in keeping kids in the classroom, as well as allowing for extracurriculars and other events outside of it.
4. The Albany Stratton VA held its first baby shower and made an announcement regarding vaccinations
The Albany Stratton VA hosted their first bi-annual drive-thru baby shower. On April 16, a tent was set up with gift bags – courtesy of Regeneron.
Additionally, the Stratton VA will be holding walk-in Moderna COVID-19 vaccine clinics on each weekday in April from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. The events will take place in Building 67 across from Albany Med and next door to Panera.
5. Prince Philip’s funeral happened on Saturday morning
With military bands and a royal procession, Prince Philip was laid to rest Saturday in a funeral ceremony that honored his lifetime of service to the country, the crown and his wife, Queen Elizabeth II. The widowed British monarch, setting an example amid the coronavirus pandemic, sat alone at the ceremony.
On Monday, the thoroughbreds returned to the Spa City as training gets underway at Saratoga Race Course. While a major renovation of the Oklahoma Training Track continues, horses and riders will take to the main track.
Fans will be welcomed back to the track this summer at up to 20% percent capacity, subject to the State’s guidance that includes showing proof of a negative COVID test or vaccination.