Saturday, July 28, 2007

What's Cooking in GreeneLand

HOME AGAIN. After training at the Culinary Institute and working in big league restaurants (The Bellagio in Las Vegas, Aqua in San Francisco, Straightwharf in Nantucket), Adam Monteverde has returned to his GreeneLand roots. His grandparents and parents ran the Athens Hotel. Now Adam is head chef at what is now called The River Tavern at Stewart House.

NEW DEMOCRAT. Catskill Town Councilman Lewis O’Connor (who also is Catskill Village superintendent of public works) has switched his voter registration from Republican to Democrat. The change marks a return. “I was a Democrat until 1980,” Mr O’Connor told Seeing Greene, “when I needed a job.” His re-affiliation with the locally recessive party does not have immediate electoral implications, as his term does not expire until 2009. It came about “because I was not happy with some of the old-time politics here.”

NEWS BIZ NEWS. No longer mastheaded as Executive Editor of The Daily Mail, as of June 20th, is Theresa Hyland. With her excision, the top names are Roger Coleman, Publisher, and Raymond Pignone, Managing Editor. Nobody holds the title Editor-in-Chief. At the sister paper in Hudson, The Register-Star, Ms Hyland still is billed as Executive Editor, as she has been since last September. A new man, John Santana, is Managing Editor.

AND THE GOUGING GOES ON. The price of regular gasoline, on average, nation-wide early this week was $3 per gallon. On the East Coast, the average was $2.92; New York State, $3.08; New York City, $3. In GreeneLand, the lowest price of regular was the average State-wide price. In Claverack, yesterday, $2.97. County legislators, why not investigate?

ORDER IN THE CLASSROOM! In prospect is rental by Greene County of the former St Patricks Academy in Catskill, for temporary use as courtrooms and related judicial functions during renovation of the county courthouse.

VA VA VOOM!= Title of latest album--“wild hybrid of bawdy blues and rowdy rock”--emitted by GreeneLand’s Lex Grey & the Urban Pioneers. To hear it, to order it, and/or to hear and see much more, google

LITIGATION FRONT. The lawsuit against Peckham Materials and three of its business associates opened in Catskill on Thursday, with Greene County Judge Daniel Lalor presiding as acting State Supreme Court judge. Plaintiff Lee Anne Morgan asked Judge Lalor to order the defendants to stop doing some of the things they are doing at, and on the way to and from, Peckham’s quarry site at the end of Fyke Road in the town of Catskill. She also urges the judge to find the defendants guilty of showing contempt of court, by breaching the terms of a restraining order that he previously had imposed and then lifted. Nothing was resolved immediately. A second day of proceedings was set for August 17th. As specified by plaintiff’s attorney Eugenia Brennan Heslin, Ms Morgan asked the judge to prohibit Peckham and “tenants, lessees and occupants” of the Fyke Road site from running trucks to and from the Fyke Road site on Sundays, as well as between 5:30pm and 7am. She also asks the judge to stop “the storage and assembly of explosives” at the Fyke Road quarry along with “all uses” that under Town zoning and noise laws are illegal. Attorneys appearing for the various defendants contended, in brief opening remarks, that *the activities of which Ms Morgan complains date back 50 years, long before Ms Morgan arrived. She accordingly could and/or should have known about the noise and traffic. This legally vitiates her “nuisance” complaint. *any claims about breaches of Town law must be brought by Town authorities rather than private parties. *as for the balance of “equities” in the matter, any suffering which the plaintiff has incurred is dwarfed by the suffering that would be caused—to the defendant companies, to their customers (builders, excavators, road construction contractors) and their employees—by cessation of the quarry site activities. Negotiations looking toward a settlement between the parties took place in Judge Lalor’s chambers. Substantial progress, we hear, occurred. Also present at the trial yesterday was Lawrence Rappaport, representing the New York State attorney general. He is managing a State lawsuit charging Peckham with breach of the terms of the mining lease granted for the Fyke Road site by the Department of Environmental Conservation.

MOVED, from the front of Catskill’s Community Theater, across Main Street, next door to the Community Center: Sterling Trophies, operated by Pat and John Del Giorno (who sell bags and belts, pendants and plaques, custom embroidery, shirt and medals and gifts, as well as trophies). For the vacated site, owner P J Maisano plans to make the space “look more like the front of a theater” with a visible ticket office. Interior renovations also are in the works.

NOT DEAD: the John Birch Society. A sign of life on the part of that once-flourishing “conservative” organization appeared yesterday (7/27) in Cairo at the Youth Fair, in the form of a leaflet that was left at (as distinct from being distributed from) the booth devoted to hunting. As shown on its web site, the Society’s leaders are all elderly white men. Their youthful obsession with home grown “communists” and with protecting our republic from becoming a democracy have been succeeded by preoccupations with illegal immigration, euthanasia, “civilian disarmament,” Al Gore’s “global green Fascism,”, and international connections such as NAFTA, the United Nations and “the humanistic worldview." As for the farm-flavored Youth Fair, at Angelo Canna Park, it goes on today until 9pm and from noon to 5pm on Sunday. Check it out at

IMPENDING. July 29 (Sunday) and July 30. Monday). Auction of materials, furniture, artifacts/stuff/souvenirs from the Firemen’s Home in Hudson. Thousands of items, big and small. Proceeds to help pay for the now-operational new retirement home for New York State firefighters. Info:


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