The Yorktown Examiner – January 19, 2010
by Sam Barron
Peter Barossi constantly has his eyes open for the next great story. Barossi launched The Westchester Project in November, a Web site that uses video to chronicle fascinating people and stories throughout the county. The idea for the site was born after Barossi, 45, took his camera to film the Ossining Village Fair last summer. Although he was between jobs, the professional video producer still had a passion for filming events and wanted to create a portal where he could feature his productions.
“I want to look at inspirational people,” Barossi said. “There’s enough bad news on the Web. I’m looking for stories with good angles.” Some of the stories that Barossi has chronicled have included a Scarsdale based pigeon breeder that he met at a trade show at the County Center. He also featured the efforts of parents to keep the Yorktown Teen Center open.
Right now the Web site only features Barossi’s videos, but he is hoping to attract other filmmakers and videographers to turn the site into a place where Westchester’s best can show off their work. “Hopefully I can start getting other filmmakers to contribute their own work and create a nice visual for Westchester County,” Barossi said.
Maintaining the Web site and also filming and producing the videos that he supplies for it can be time-consuming. Barossi estimates that he works about 20 hours a month on the site. One obstacle is finding music to use as background music for his videos. He said that purchasing music is challenging and he’s looking for local musicians willing to contribute their work.
“I’m not trying to change the world,” Barossi said. “I want to bring in more of the community. I don’t want just your basic Youtube video; I’m looking for something with a little more production value. I’m more than happy to look at anyone’s work. I know there are a lot of great videos out there.”
Barossi believes he is filling a void, in that many Web sites don’t make video logs a prominent part of delivering the news. “The web is video now,” Barossi said. “With the site, everyone now has a way to promote their causes and their good works.”
Finding many of Barossi’s interesting stories and subjects is dependent upon his ability to network. He learns of most of his stories and subjects through word of mouth, Twitter and by being a member of the Ossining Chamber of Commerce.
“We’ve only been up since November 16,” Barossi said. “But I’m getting more and more of a reputation.”
Originally from Yonkers, Barossi moved to Queens with his family when he was eight years old. He moved back to Westchester seven years ago when he and his family relocated to Ossining. Barossi loves the sense of community that Westchester provides.
“There are lots of activities up here,” Barossi said. “I love the way everyone is involved with their kids and I love the parks. I basically love everything about Westchester. You can’t complain about the weather. I’m happy with the schools and the way people are involved in the community.”
Barossi said that having children–he’s the father of two girls, a seven- and tenyear-old–has helped him become more involved in the community. His daughters
play youth sports where he regularly meets other parents, which provides him greater insight into what’s going on locally. Owning a video-production business located downtown keeps him in the middle of the action and in touch with plenty of people who want to contribute to The Westchester Project.
“A lot of people are willing to help,” Barossi said. “They want me to succeed. I’ve become more aware of other people’s concerns. I appreciate things more.” To view the site, visit www.westchesterproject.com.