Friday, August 31, 2007

Autumn's End

AWARDED, by GreeneLand’s Arts Council, from funds provided by the County Legislature, to 12 GreeneLand cultural organizations: grants, ranging in amount from $700 to $2700. Geography surely shaped selections. The winning applicants are based in Coxsackie (Greene County Historical Society), Hunter (Greene Room Players; Catskill Mountain Foundation), Windham (Chamber Music Festival), Lexington (Ensemble Theatre), Jewett (Music & Art Center), Elka Park (Horton By the Stream), Acra (Free103point9WaveRadio, a new player), Round Top (Altamura music center), East Durham (Irish American Heritage Museum; Irish Feis) and Catskill (Thomas Cole National Historic Site). Later to be allocated are other grants to other worthy cultural projects. These come from a State Arts Council "Decentralization" pool. Last year GreeneLand’s Arts Council was able to distribute $24,000 in precious dribs and drabs to 17 individuals and projects. A similar sum is likely to be apportioned for next year. Applications deadline is 16 days off. For information: and/or 943-3400.

SEIZED by Catskill police, in a raid last Friday (8/24) on a house at 68 Thompson Street, 100 yards from the station: marijuana plants and packaging materials. The weed allegedly was growing in the basement. Occupant Paul G. Gill, 44, who was not there at the time, was arrested, charged with criminal possession of controlled substance (felony class C) and growing cannabis (misdemeanor), and jailed pending a $25,000 bail or a $50,000 bond payment. This raid, as reported by Andrea Macko, followed by a day actions at two other Catskill dwellings where stocks of marijuana allegedly were found. Now, most remarkable about this Daily Mail story (8/25) is the fact that it appeared. Police chief Dave Darling has placed severe restrictions on public access to the public records that are his department’s Arrest and Incident reports. He rules that only a specific request about a particular event shall be heeded, and only to the extent of having a subordinate verbally dole out portions of the relevant report. That policy departs from what has prevailed in the past, from how most police departments (State and local) operate, and from what the relevant laws provide. In support of his policy Chief Darling sought advice from Village Attorney Alex Betke, who responded to his client by citing Section 87 (paragraphs E and F) of the Public Officers Law. The cited legal language, however, does not uphold the chief’s policy. It only identifies kinds of information that in particular kinds of cases or situation can be withheld from reports. It allows, in other words, for selective redactions (of, for example, the names of minors). Meanwhile, the public’s right of access to police “blotters,” under the State’s Freedom of Information Law, is copiously and clearly set forth in advisory opinions issued by Robert J. Freeman of New York State’s Committee on Open Government. ( ; thence to Arrest Reports and Incident Reports). Local media organizations have not bothered to challenge the Darling doctrine. To that extent they have connived with the chief, along with Seeing Greene, at keeping Catskillians in a state of ignorance.

BAD MOUTHER. A Catskill businessman, having moved from Hudson with abundant remarks about what a bad place it was, and having initially voiced effusive praise for his reception here, is now dumping on the place. That line of chatter could be related to his own sloppiness about responding to messages, confirming appointments….

PECKHAM PRODDED. While its lawsuit against Peckham Materials and North American Explosives Co. is pending, plaintiff’s side accuses defendants of disregarding a “prior temporary restraining order” by running trucks excessively along Fyke Road, to the extent on some days of as many as 180 trips beginning at 3:30 in the morning. This activity, says Arthur Anderson, spokesman for plaintiff Lee Anne Morgan, is “the height of corporate arrogance and ‘the public be damned’!” For more information from plaintiff’s side, see The hearing before Judge Daniel Lalor is slated to resume September 27th.

DEADBEAT MOM? Angela Berry, 30, has been sentenced by County Judge Daniel K. Lalor (says The Daily Mail, 8/27) to six months in jail for failing to pay $1290 to the Greene County Child Support Unit.

NEW CLUBHOUSE will greet Windham Country Club members in 2008. Most of the present clubhouse will be demolished to make way on the same site. Biggest change will be construction of 10-foot-deep deck running full length of the building, facing the fairways and with tables for dining and drinking. New bar (34 feet long) and dining room will accommodate 200 people. Pro shop will be located downstairs, near locker rooms, carts garage, and practice green. Board members are diffident about estimating the likely cost, but it will come to 7 figures and the first digit might not be a one.

TONIGHT (Friday, 8/31) Catskill: Brazilian song stylist Machan performs at Stella’s Lounge. Hensonville: Lex Grey + Storm Front Blues Band, at Horton Smith House. And again on Sunday afternoon barbecue. (518) 7349510. SATURDAY (9/1) Windham: Simon Shaheen (violinist and—yes!--oudist) and his ensemble “Qantara” (=arch) meld jazz, pop, Western classical and Arabic music, from 8pm at the Civil and Performing Arts Center, followed by reception at the Fine Arts Gallery. (518)678-9309, 734-3868 or Tannersville: New York City dance troupe Jennifer Muller/The Works performs at Hunter-Tannersville High School. (518)263-2063 or Catskill: at the Farmers & Artisans’ Market, Historic Catskill Point, mid-morning jazz will be provided by the Joe Michels quartet. --At Dutchman’s Landing, from 7pm, the free concert will be provided by the R&R group Steppin’ Out. --At Cone E Island (West Bridge/West Main), from 6pm, patrons are invited to “Say Goodbye to Summer.” --At the former Christ Presbyterian Church (6 Franklin St, opposite the Library), thanks to the hospitality of proprietors Mark Beard and Jim Manfredi, five dancers who have been toiling there for two weeks will present four newly choreographed works, from 7pm. Donations needed. --At Stella’s Lounge, Brazilian song stylist “Machan” performs from 8:30pm. WEDNESDAY (9/5) Catskill: “Angel Support Group” under guidance of Angela (sic.), meets at Divine Enlightenment for “an evening of connecting with God and the Angels.” (518)947-6413;

SO WHY >Do we press harder on a remote control button when we know the batteries are dying? >Do they use sterilized needles to carry out a sentence of death by lethal injection? >Doesn’t Tarzan have a beard? >Does Superman stop bullets with his chest, but duck when they throw a gun at him? >Did kamikaze pilots wear helmets? >If we evolved from apes, are there still apes? >Don’t we have father-in-law jokes?

Friday, August 24, 2007

Newby News

After spending many years in Westchester, Jim “Miracle Man” Murphy has moved back to Catskill to serve as Columbia/Greene manager for First Niagara Mortgages. According to The Daily Mail (8/23), he achieved national fame 24 years ago on “Good Morning America” when, while working as a painter on the Rip Van Winkle Bridge, and with hands lathered in baby oil to repel aluminum-based paint from adhering to his skin, he slipped and plunged 162 feet into the Hudson. After landing headfirst in mud at bottom of 4 feet of water, he survived with a broken arm. >Speaking of survivors, advertising guru Nina Sklansky moved from Greenport to Catskill 17 days ago, and had the good fortune to be out last Friday night when a massive maple tree, blown over by the fierce winds from the sidewalk verge, crashed down on the roof of her Second Empire house. Fortunately, too, neighbor Stan Raven reached her by telephone to convey the news, easing what otherwise would have been the shock of discovery. Ms Sklansky was “astounded and delighted,” she told Seeing Greene, at the speed and efficiency of clean-up work done by Village Public Works Department crewmen. >Versatile artist Brian Dewan flew to Los Angeles for the opening tonight of a gallery show of his work. A GreeneLand resident as of last July, Mr Dewan not only paints pictures but also composes and plays music and, with his brother Leon, invents instruments. And writes poetry. And makes film strips and furniture designs. Check him out on Wikipedia, Google, and the website It’s a trip. > From Aberdeen (Scotland), by way of Go-Go dancing, chambermaiding, silver service waitressing, barmaiding, train-cleaning, fish processing, double glazing-peddling, story-making and top-drawer journalism comes new GreeneLander Ann Cooper. Credentials: Proof of rare literacy and wit: >Recent settler Warner Shook, the theater maven, will soon be leaving his marvelous East Catskill home, and partner Frank Swim, for stints of directing in Seattle (Clare Booth Luce’s timely play “The Women”) and then in Los Angeles (Oscar Wilde’s “The Importance of Being Earnest”). >Ex-Hudsonian Johnnie Moore will be absent from his splendid Athens home for most of the coming eight months, as he tours with “I Love A Piano,” a revue of Irving Berlin songs. He’ll sing and dance in a troupe of six performers and eight musicians. Following rehearsals that start next week in New York, the show opens September 21 in Boston. Details:


ELECTED to the Hall of Fame of the U.S. Meeting and Planning Association, at the group’s convention this week in Florida: Franklyn Dickson, of Maple Crest.

RETURNED to masthead of The Daily Mail, as Executive Editor, after unexplained 6-week absence: Theresa Hyland.

LEARNED from experience in the business: the “hardest thing about running a good restaurant in the mid-Hudson area” is “finding enough professional staff.” That’s the judgment voiced by Carole Clark after many years operating Hudson’s esteemed Charleston Restaurant. Ms Clark now helps to staff the Catskill office of Patricia Hinkein Realty, with former manager David King having moved up Main Street to Gary Di Mauro’s new office.

ALLOWED by the Hunter Planning Board, to put some retail shops under the roof of his big restaurant building in Tannersville: Black Diamond Grill owner Bernie Zahn.

FINED, to the tune of $285,000, by the State’s Department of Environmental Conservation, for emitting too much dense smoke over the past three years from its Catskill kiln: St Lawrence Cement Company. Also required by the terms of a negotiated settlement, according to a TimesUnion report, are repairs to SLC’s pollution-control equipment and more complete emission reports.

BENIGHTED: Drivers who move into the passing lane on a highway but linger. They stay on Cruise Control while going only a fraction of a mile faster than the car they are, so to speak, passing. Don’t they know that when they accelerate, and then take foot off accelerator, Cruise Control still operates?

TOMORROW (8/25) Haines Falls: Day-long Open House at Mountain Top Historical Society, 5132 Route 23A. Dancing, music, vendors, hayrides, puppets (in a new purpose-built theater), food, greetings by Rip Van Winkle, landscape paintings, lecture on Asher B. Durand.; Hunter: Catskill Mountain Foundation’s annual fund-raising gala, with cocktails, gourmet dinner, open bar, auctions (silent and vocal), dancing (Saints of Swing), schmoozing.—all in support of CMF arts programs. Information: (518)263-2007 or Acra: At Wave Farm, artists perform animal-based themes in aid of Hudson refuge Animal Kind. Round Top: “Shakespeare in Opera” program at Altamura Center. Also on Sunday. East Durham: Irish Feis. Step dancers, 600 strong, compete at Blackthorne resort. or (518) 6342541. And speaking of the Irish:

Mary Clancy goes up to Father O’Grady after his Sunday service, and she’s in tears. He says, “So what’s bothering you, Mary my dear? “Oh Father,” she says. “I’ve got terrible news. My husband passed away last night.” “Oh Mary, that’s terrible,” says the priest. “Tell me, did he have any last requests?” “That he did, Father.” “What did he ask, Mary?” “He said ‘Please, Mary, put down that damn gun’.”

Coxsackie: “By the Light of the Silvery Moon,” a Greene County Historical Society evocation of rural life on a full moon night in GreeneLand 300 years ago. Ghost stories (Dick Muggeo), folk songs (Bob Lusk), country desserts and other treats in and around the original Bronck family dwellings. Queries: (518) 731-6490;;

Catskill: no Saturday Stroll, no Saturday Studios, but luscious Lex Grey, rock diva, performs in the morning, at the Riverside Farmers’ & Artisans’ Market, and again in the evening, at Catskill Point. In addition, the life of Barry Hopkins—artist, teacher, runner, founder of the Kindred Spirits Wilderness Experience and of the Greater Sense of Place program--will be celebrated at Cedar Grove (the Thomas Cole National Historic Site, 218 Spring St) from 5pm. Parking there is reserved for the elderly and handicapped, but a shuttle bus will run from the Catskill Middle School parking lot at 4:45pm and back after the event.

APOLOGY Although no trees were killed for the sake of this verbiage, many electrons were inconvenienced.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Rolling to Climax

TANKS TO ROLL? According to unconfirmed reports, the Peckham Materials oil tanks that currently inhabit a piece of the riverbank on the north end of Athens are going to be moved. No longer are they needed for getting fuel from or two water-borne tankers. They will be shifted to a site along the Conrail tracks.  In the words of a neighbor, this thrilling prospect means the removal of “horrible carbuncular objects that mar the banks of the Hudson,” thereby enhancing the qualify of life for local residents.

Could the tanks that repose at Catskill Point be next to go? That would be so excellent.

ALLIED, at a sun-drenched, balmy ceremony last Saturday on Maude Adams Road in Tannersville: the Thomas Cole National Historic Site in Catskill with the Mountain Top Arboretum. The Arboretum will contribute expertise and materials to the TCNHS’s gardens at Cedar Grove, in aid of representing there what existed there 150 years ago. The ambitious restoration effort already is under way, thanks to grants procured by the Cole Site board, plans drawn up by eminent landscape artist Robert Toole, and implementation supervised by Cole Site Trustee Robin Smith. On behalf of the Arboretum, Larry McCaffrey and Joan Kutcher dilated on the natural affinity of Thomas Cole’s art with the beauty of the mountain scenery that he lovingly explored and painted. In hailing the partnership, Cedar Grove chairman Lisa Fox Martin recalled that Thomas Cole “regularly traveled on foot or carriage from his Catskill home to experience the majesty of your mountains with sketchbook in hand, returning to his studio, where…he forged a new approach to painting a quintessentially American landscape…. Cole said ‘All nature is new to art,” and it still is.” A Seeing Greene reporter attended the party, and returned with this advice for GreeneLanders: GO SEE THE ARBORETUM. 589-3903

“FOR RESCUING me, he got a 30-day suspension.” That quote could be one way of launching a long, zig-zagging story about a boat mishap on the Hudson, 911 calls, clashes among firefighters, booze, mediation efforts, assaults, cover-ups, nasty blogs, State agency shake-ups, consolidation without conciliation, and and.

9=number of grandchildren who, along with 10 parents and sundry friends, will congregate this weekend to mark a certain GreeneLander's descent into geezerhood.  Or codgerdom.    


Hunter Mountain: Celtic Festival (bands, bagpipers, caber tossing, authentic products). And again on Sunday.

Tannersville: "Great Perennials for Mixed Borders" identified by nurseryman Bob Hyland, former vice president of Horticulture & Operations at Brooklyn Botanic Garden, at Mountain Top Arboretum, 11am.

Catskill: “Saturday Studios”=debut of a new promotional drive by the new Gallery Owners’ Association. Most shops and restaurants will be open. Among special events, starting at about 5pm: a tasting reception at DREAM, with Naima and her belly-dancing students performing on the street. “Uncovered: Nude But Not Rude” works at M ( ; we had a preview; they are excellent). “Flashpoint”=photos, encaustics & collages by Gail Greg, at Gallery 384. . “Playing Outside”=interpretations of local landscape, by Dina Burstyn and Julie Chase, at The Open Studio. A new show, plus wine and “lovelies,” at Beginner’s Mind; “Changing Landscape”=works by Henry Snell, Howard Gay, Seymour Remenick, Charles Shearer and Edwin Brent, at Terenchin Fine Art. “Cowgirls 2”=works by many female artist, continuing at BRIK (with music?).  And poetry, declaimed up & down Main Street, as well as at the All Arts Matter competition in Books & More (347 Main). Live music at Catskill Point (Tequila Mockingbirds; Bobby Farris Band) and The Creekside (Watt 4; from 10pm). And don’t forget the cats.

DIRTY TRICKS DEPT. Newspapers sell classified advertisements by the column inch, and the columns containing the ads often are narrower than the columns in the rest of the newspaper. In The Daily Mail, for example, page 1 offers news across 6 columns; but in the classified pages there are 9 columns. To this practice The Daily Mail adds text-stretching, , so that a whole line is devoted to “the” or to

t h e

 A line saying “Name of Limited Liabili-“ is followed by a line consisting entirely of

t y

Another line is apt to consist wholly of

o f


  • ”It’s always an amazing thing for our family,” said his granddaughter to The Houston Chronicle, “whenever we are out among [John Wayne’s] fans, because he’s almost been dead for 30 years.”
  • ”Boyfriend Of Slain Woman Found in NYU Building Charged With Murder” says headline on Web site of station New York 1.
  • ”When the water rises, as it does year after year to varying degrees,” according to a recent New York Times article, “Indian peasants are ritually stranded.”
  • The adult film “Debbie Does Dallas” is being adapted for a musical performed at the Edinburgh Festival. The producer’s “main concern,” according to The Guardian, “is whether Debbie should be seen having sex. ‘I don’t want it to be offensive,’ he said, ‘but we need a bigger climax’.”

 --from World Wide Words.


Friday, August 10, 2007

Gloriou$ NewS

AWARDED, by the National Endowment for the Humanities, to the Greene County Historical Society’s Cedar Grove committee, in aid of the “Interpreting America’s Historic Places” program: a grant worth, ahem, three hundred twenty thousand, nine hundred dollars. As reported today by Elizabeth Jacks, executive director of The Thomas Cole National Historic Site in Catskill, the grant would fund the making of a permanent exhibition composed of an introductory film, educational panels, thematic displays of collection objects, interactive computer stations, printed booklets and brochures, guided tours of the site, and related sources of “insights into America's cultural history through the nineteenth-century artist Thomas Cole,” founder of the Hudson River School of art. The compound exhibition will “address Cole’s art-making process and the significant role his appreciation and interpretation of the American landscape had in shaping an emerging national and cultural identity.” Project planning already is “well under way” thanks to previous NEH and New York State Arts Council grants, which funded consultations with community members, with neighboring institutions (Olana; the Albany Institute of History and Art) and with experts.

TRIUMPH. Growing, glowing local support for the Cole cause was demonstrated on July 21, when the annual “PIC-NIC” turned out, Ms Jacks reports, to be “our most successful summer party yet.” Attendance rose by 18 per cent over last year’s, and net profit jumped 20 per cent. More than 200 participants paid between $75 and $100 each for hors d’oeuvres, beverages, music and schmoozing at Cedar Grove, followed by dinner at the home of any of the 13 hosts, on both sides of the Hudson, who entertained 10 or more (up to 60) guests. Since the hosts covered the costs of the food they prepared and the beverages they served, and since more than a few well-wishers provided special sponsorship, the Site achieved, from a gross income of about $43,000, a net of about $35,000. Major in-kind donations came from Douglas Koch, whose floral arrangements graced the cocktail party, and from Eddie Domaney in Great Barrington, who donated cases of sparkling wine for the party’s Bellinis. “As a result of your generosity and support,” Ms Jacks told sponsors, “we are able to grow Cedar Grove into your source for learning about the Hudson River School.”

THE VOLUNTEERS. Painter. Musician. Actor. Professor. Government department head. Psychologist. Magazine editor. Museum curator. International journalist. School teacher. Lawyer. Banker. Gallery manager. Student. Art teacher. Art dealer. Nurse. Businessman. Doorman. Those are some of the occupations, current or past, of the people who serve, pro bono, as volunteers in support of the Thomas Cole site.

THOSE FIREWORKS just south of the Rip Van Winkle Bridge last Saturday night were occasioned by a wedding. After Alexandra Bouchard Pulver and John Lancaster Bassett were married in Hudson, by Rev. Phillip Smith of St Mary’s Church in Hudson, a plenitude of well-wishers celebrated at the Catskill home of the bride’s parents, Greene County Judge George J. Pulver Jr. and his wife Michelle. The couple, graduates of Cornell University, will be living in New York City, where the bride, 30, plans to begin study at Pratt Institute for a master’s degree in industrial design. Until June, she was a project manager at the advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi. Her husband, 31, having received a Master’s degree in architecture from Princeton University, works for Richard Meier and Partners in Manhattan. He is the son of William Bassett, a professor of law at the University of San Francisco, and Jacqueline Bassett, a real estate agent; they live in Alamo CA.

CITED as witness to a torrid recording studio scene starring Hard Rocker Axl Rose aboard a “cute 19-year old stripper” who supplied audible gasps and groans to the “Rocket Queen” track of the Guns ‘n Roses album Appetite for Destruction, in Issue 1032 of Rolling Stone: GreeneLand’s Victor Deyglio. The veteran engineer and guitarist now leads a relatively sedate life as partner to the torrid, larger-than-life, yet civilized, rock diva Lex Grey.

GRADUATED from U.S. Naval Academy, with commission in the Marine Corps: Travis A. Ursprung, son, grandson, brother, nephew of multiple GreeneLanders. As reported in The Daily Mail (8/5/07), Lieutenant Ursprung made that transition by way of Navy enlistment after graduation from Coxsackie-Athens High School in 2000.

REAPED from last Saturday’s Wacky Raft Race: more than $8000, supporting the revived, flourishing Catskill Community Center. To view pictures of the event--lots of pictures in an electronic ‘album’ just like the Cat ‘n Around photos—click to

WHO? He’s Brendan Kennedy in the Daily Maul headline (8/7/07), Brandon in the picture caption. In either guise, this son of distinguished author William Kennedy is another of our richly talented Athens residents.

PRAISED, so to speak, by recent visitors, in reviews on GreeneLand’s foremost resort, the 526-room Friar Tuck. “It wasn’t that bad,” says a July visitor from Central Islip, referring to previous Trip Advisor reviews that “scared” him. “It is what it is! Relaxing!” says another July visitor, affirming that all four family members had great fun and will return. Compared with other reviews, those words qualify as rave notices. Another July visitor says “What you’ve read”—a succession of damnations—“is true.” Her bedroom “reeked of mildew,” while the bathroom was “positively disgusting,” to the point where allergic reactions drove her family away after one night. The complaint about stench seems to persist. The Central Islip visitor’s room “stank to high heaven” until, after shopping trip in Cairo, she sprayed it with “febreeze and air fresheners.”

ACED, on Monday (8/6), by Angel Hernandez, with a 9 iron carrying 136 yards to an elevated green: Catskill Golf Club’s sixth hole. It happened during the Rotary Club-organized fund-raising tournament for the Greene County Women’s League (help for cancer victims) and won him a prize of $56. But if it had come on hole number 2, Mr Hernandez’s ace would have earned a Buick Lucerne.

COULDNESS. A pending property sale could be more newsworthy than usual. Alternatively, it could be just another dreary foreclosure auction, conducted in the lobby of the county courthouse by a referee who gets $500 to read aloud a long routine statement to one prospective bidder. In this case the referee will be Jon Kosich, the scintillating event is scheduled for 10am on August 21, and the likely single bidder will be an agent of the mortgage holder, Deutsche Bank, offering exactly what the creditor is owed.

The event could be noteworthy, however, if there were a special story behind the big discrepancy between what the creditor is owed and what the property seems to be worth. The lien, as estimated in the relevant court order’s quaint language, is in the “approximate” amount of $219,215 and 27 cents “plus interest and costs.” The property, as recorded on the books of Hunter Town Assessor Mark Hummel, is assessed for tax purposes at $77,000. That figure applies to a two-acre property, at 45-49 County Route 25, that is occupied by an 1150-square-foot house (vintage 1900) and a 760-square-foot cottage. The disparity between the property’s assessed value and the lien amount is unusual. And possibly noteworthy. And possibly due only to a big time lag since the last reassessment.

The property sale also might be newsworthy on account of the name of the defaulter: Kenneth Schermerhorn. Could this be the musical, internationally distinguished Kenneth Schermerhorn? the conductor of orchestras in Minneapolis, New Jersey, New York, Hong Kong and Nashville? the wild, crazy, gifted, charismatic guy whose charming, gifted, free-spirited wife sang an opera role in the buff?

Alternatively, could the defaulter be a descendant of pioneering GreeneLander Frederick Schermerhorn? If so, his local ancestry traces back to a Round Top farmer the Round Top farmer who was abducted by Indians during the Revolutionary War. Well, 15 Schermerhorns are listed in the local telephone directory. Three of them are Kenneths. The Haines Falls Kenneth’s telephone works but nobody answers. The other local Schermerhorns do not know this one, or each other.

So much for what would be news if...

TONIGHT (8/10)

Athens: Music of the Tom Healy band, Riverfront Park, from 7pm.atskill: Live music at Stella’s Lounge.


Windham: Art Fest (visits to 7 galleries and 8 studios) from 10am. (518)734-5076.Chamber Music Festival (string quartet “Ethel” doing classical & contemporary & jazz & pop & rock all in one evening;

Hunter: plays by Horton Foote (“The Actor” and “The Dancers”) live at Doctorrow Center for the Performing Arts. or (518)263-2063 or

German Alps Festival (authentic Bavarian beers, food, music) at Hunter Mountain.

Cairo: Renaissance Faire at Angelo Canna Park. Discounts for Cairo residents and for patrons dressed in "Rengarb.” and/or

Catskill: Second Saturday festivities up and down Main Street, hailed & detailed in Live music, poetry, dancing, a book-signing (foodie Brigit Binns at Hood & Co.), and a tasting reception at DREAM (388 Main) showcasing “A Perfect Pear,” Napa Valley condiments.

SUNDAY (8/12)

Tannersville: “The Actor” and “The Dancers” performed at Elka Park, 2pm.

Hunter: More of Alps Festival.

Cairo: Renaissance Faire concludes.

Round Top: “Extreme Latin!” matinee program at Altamura Center for Arts & Culture, offering "fusion of classical, Flamenco, hip-hop, tango and Afro-Cuban sounds with classical piano, Latin percussion and cutting-edge break-dancing.”

Friday, August 03, 2007

Turning the Dial

RADIO PROJECT. Tom Roe of Wave Farm in Acra is spearheading a drive to establish a new GreeneLand-centered community radio station. The contemplated station would be a “voice for local artists” as well as meeting “educational and journalistic…needs in the community.” To this end Tom needs to couple prospective grants from outside non-profits with local pledges of financial support. In October the Federal Communications Commission will review applications for full-power educational radio stations. A preliminary engineering study shows that there is room for such a station covering most of GreeneLand plus the western half of Columbia County and the southern fringe of Albany County (or 36 ZIP codes). “That's all the good news,” says Tom. “The bad news is we have very little time, and need to raise a good deal of money quickly to apply for the frequency. To apply, you need to have a full-fledged engineering report done, and you need a broadcast lawyer to fill out the application (the FCC throws out applications if even one line is filled out incorrectly). This costs between $5000 and $8000. We do have some national groups seeing about fund-raising and grants to apply to our efforts, but we need to raise most of this money in the local community.” Seeing Greene pledges $200. Tom is at and (518)622-2598.

GAS AGAIN. In GreeneLand this week, gasoline prices out west, in Tannersville and Palenville among other places, were lower than prices in the river towns. And yet the volume of business per station and the costs of delivery to stations are lower in the river towns. Meanwhile, as usual, GreeneLanders paid more than other Americans, on average; and more than most East Coast residents, and more than most New England residents, and more than Massachusetts residents, and more than most New Yorkers. The national average for regular was $2.85. The averages for the other areas mentioned ranged from $2.86 to $ per gallon. In Greene-Land the range was from about $2.97 up past $3.12.

VETERAN WOES. Many GreeneLand vets’ claims for pensions and compensation have taken a year and even more to get processed by the Veterans’ Administration in Washington. The delays are part of the legacy of James Nicholson, departing head of the Federal Department of Veterans Affairs, who achieved notoriety for, among other things, bestowing bonuses on key subordinates as rewards for efficiency.

BARRY HOPKINS, who taught art to Catskill school pupils for 37 years, died last Sunday after a prolonged battle with a cancerous brain tumor. Mr Hopkins was an active artist, a vice-president of the GreeneLand Arts Council, an avid runner, and the principal creator of the Catskill schools’ “Greater Sense of Place” program. He led many hikes to mountainous sites that had been memorialized by famous Hudson River School artists. These trips paved the way for the Thomas Cole National Historic Site’s Art Trails development. Mr Hopkins was 61. He leaves a widow, Karen; two children, Drew and Ashley; two grandchildren; three siblings, and many friends. A memorial service is being planned. Contributions in his name would fittingly go to local environmental and art organizations.

NAME GAME: The Grateful Bed was the name of a vacation rental business in the Tannersville area, now deceased. But the title’s use is alive and well in California and British Columbian hostelries.

WHEN? Catskill’s scintillating web site gives times of events in 5 digits, as in “7:00:00PM.”

WHERE? In his advertising leaflet Countywide Opportunities, publisher/editor Leonard Young lists his address as “66 Green Street” in Catskill. Oops. It’s Greene Street, Leonard; as in General Nathaniel Greene, George Washington’s best Revolutionary War officer.

LIVE KIOSKS will be coming to Catskill, eventually. Instead of, or in addition to, the usual printed messages, they will tout the latest wonders of ever-improving Catskill by means of animated video screens. They will not eventuate as soon as the pocket park at the end of Greene Street, the kayak and canoe moorings and lockers along the creek west of the county building, and various Main Street beautification measures. They are yet another component of Vinnie’s vision

TONIGHT (Friday, Aug. 3)

Catskill: Musical benefit for leukemia victim Hilary Manning-Lundy. Lots of hot musicians playing, and DJ’s too, from 5pm until late. At the Wilder Studio, 375 Main St. Plus silent auction.

Athens: Free show by The Digits at Riverfront Park, Water St, from 7pm.

Greenville: Bluegrass music (& camping, & crafters) from today through Sunday on Chris Ahlf farmlands. See (One of the performing groups, according to a Daily Maul wordsmith, will take the stage with a “plinka-plunk twang” that is “indistinguishable.”

Cairo: Music & activities at Angelo Canna Park, from 6:30pm.

Windham: Civil War Heritage Foundation encampment & exhibits at Windham Center Church. See


Hunter: new Pleshakov Piano Museum opens in the Doctorrow Center for Performing Arts, from 5pm, with Beethoven pieces performed on authentic period instruments. The program will be repeated on Sunday after a 1pm tour of the new museum.

Catskill: Another lively day, starting with the Farmers’ & Artisans’ Market at Historic Catskill Point (from 9am, with folk music by Coosheen from 10:30), coinciding with a Tag Day at the Catskill Fire Station. On upper Main Street, the big draw is a new art show at BRIK--“Cowgirls 2,” an “eclectic all-woman group show” curated by Brooklyn’s Richard Timperio—kicked off by a barbecue plus Catskill’s own Mae West/Tina Turner/Janis Joplin/Bette Midler, Lex Grey. Across the creek, meanwhile, at Sean Meagher’s aptly named Creekside Restaurant, a “summer fest” of musicians commences at 6pm. For more live music, check the main stage at The Point along with ‘Positive Mental Trip’ at Doubles II (25 Church St). [This paragraph was altered 14 hours after posting so as to purge the blunder whereby today, August 4th, was described as a "second Saturday."]

(And across the river, departing at noon from Hudson’s Waterfront Park “near the Amtrack train station,” Hudson Cruises offers an aquatic jaunt fortified by 2 masseuses and 4 psychics)


Athens (Riverfront Park) to Catskill (Dutchmen’s Landing), from 11am: Wacky Raft Race. Find a viewing spot along the river. Check


The Sally Trafelmayer who, upon discovering that her little daughter had eaten some ants, administered a dose of ant poison, is NOT a GreeneLander. And Sgt. Rick Deyo of the Catskill police did NOT summon backup to the Dandelion day care center because a kid there was resisting a rest.