Crossgates a lure to turn in weapons

GUILDERLAND — A church in Albany is offering gifts to a suburban mall to anyone who turns in a handgun.

Victory Christian Church, as part of its Gifts for Guns program, will accept any handgun, no questions asked, in exchange for a $150 Crossgates Mall gift card, good at any store.

The program, according to founder Pastor Charles Muller, is in its fourth year, and, on average, collects 30 guns per year; 11 have already been turned in this year.

“It doesn’t matter if the person turning it in has a permit,” said Muller. “A lot of times people have unused guns lying around and if kids get their hands on them, there are accidents or they are used for crime; we want to get those guns off the street.”

Guns may be turned in to 118 Quail St., Albany, through Christmas.

More Guilderland News

ALTAMONT — The sun is bright though the air is chill on Monday morning as kids in Amy Martin’s fourth-grade class cavort during recess outside Altamont Elementary School.

In a playground game, two girls cross their arms over their chests as a classmate, Michael Puzio, approaches.

Supervisor Kenneth Runion said this week that the town had granted Verizon a franchise agreement so that it could install utilities in the right-of-way.

ALTAMONT — Those close to Reverend Robert Luidens — who will soon be retiring as pastor of the Al