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April 19, 2014
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When you go to a Simple Gifts concert, you can expect to hear a variety of musical genres played on a variety of instruments. Karen Hirshon and Linda Littleton, two of the women in Simple Gifts, say audiences will learn and they will also laugh.

As if the Cornell Lab of Ornithology isn’t already fantastic enough, this leading authority on birds recently released a new in-depth website that explores many facets of feathers from scientific...

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A “fetid herb” is botanist Homer D. House’s perfect description in his 1934 book “Wild Flowers,” of our first wild plant to flower in spring.

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World events, no matter where, are no longer “remote,” and haven’t been for some time. Moment by moment, we can follow the search for a vanished jetliner over the Indian Ocean, or watch one...

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That was my thought process last week as I headed out the door to check in at the 2014 Green Tourism conference in Callicoon, NY (...

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The variables in fly fishing are considerable and perplexing to the beginner and experienced fisher alike. Deciding what to do in a given situation can be answered easily with about 10 years of...

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A week ago Thursday, the morning was chilly, but the forecast called for mild temperatures and sunny skies. I wanted to check out the Tusten trail and it promised to be a good day for a hike. Most...

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Marathon softball game to celebrate Smoky Joe

MILFORD, PA — The Pike County Historical Society (PCHS) will once again host “23 for History,” a marathon softball game in honor of Shohola’s Smoky Joe Wood. The game will be held on September 24 at the Little League Field on the east side of Milford. The event will benefit PCHS, with funds raised going toward a new roof. Players will be provided food and beverages courtesy of Jorgenson’s at the Dimmick, not only a sponsor of the event, but also provider of many willing participants in the game over the years.  Read more

Guys and Dolls

MATAMORAS, PA — Try-City Stage will present the musical “Guys and Dolls” at The Riverview Inn, 400 Shay Lane, from Thursday, September 29 through Sunday, October 2. On Friday, September 30 and Saturday, October 1, dinner will be served. Tickets range from $22 for the show only to $45 for dinner and the show. Bill Thomas directs and Melissa Thomas is the choreographer.

For specific show times and reservations, visit www.try-citystage.org or call 845/858-7925.

The Yarnslingers tackle ghosts

LIVINGSTON MANOR, NY — The Yarnslingers is looking for talespinners, age 18 and up, who have a personal story to tell about ghosts. The tales will be told from 4 to 6 p.m. on October 29 at the Catskill Art Society (CAS).

Stories must be a maximum of 550 words. Submit a summary of your story to yarnslingers@yahoo.com. Finished stories will be due by email by October 15. Editing assistance is available.  Read more

‘Patriots’ Weekend’

NARROWSBURG, NY — To celebrate the final weekend of its 2011 season, Fort Delaware Museum of Colonial History will hold a “Patriots’ Weekend.” It will include presentations by historian Peter Osborne on the Battle of Minisink on Saturday, September 24 at 2 p.m. and a presentation on genealogy by Gloria McCullough and Ann O’Hara of the Wayne County Historical Society on Sunday, September 25, at 2 p.m.  Read more

‘Dad Doesn’t Dance’

NARROWSBURG, NY — Fresh from a run at the Midtown International Theatre Festival (MITF) in New York City, Nora Brown’s “Dad Doesn’t Dance” will be performed at the Delaware Arts Center at 27 Main St. on Saturday, September 24 at 8 p.m. The show has been nominated for Outstanding Solo Show Production in the MITF 2011.

Brown crosses the continent from Winnipeg to Hollywood as she encounters five mysterious men and the clues they reveal. An infidelity causes her to look at her life, leading to the revelation of the existence of a biological father.  Read more

Black Bear Film Festival tickets

MILFORD, PA —Tickets and passes for the 12th annual Black Bear Film Festival are now on sale. The festival will be held at the historic Milford Theatre from October 14 to 16. This year’s opening night film will be the Oscar-winning “Cinema Paradiso,” which will be shown at 9 p.m. immediately following the Friday night red carpet Gala. Two hundred Gold Passes, which include admission to all films and the Friday night Gala, are available for $200 on a first-come, first-served basis.  Read more

An apology

On the 9th, 10th and 11th of September, Barb and I enjoyed the opportunity to attend the annual Bamboo Rod Makers Gathering at the Catskill Fly Fishing Center. Rod makers from 24 states plus Japan and Canada came to the gathering. A total of 134 men and women were in attendance. Seminars ranged from a talk on “George Halstead and his rods and ferrules,” by Jed Dempsey and John Feldenzer, to Tim Abbott on bamboo fly rod tapers and how to develop them, to the advantages and disadvantages of various glues used in the making of bamboo rods by a panel of Jed Dempsey, Tim Abbott and John Zimny.  Read more

Milkweed microhabitat

Anyone who has walked in a field or a roadside has probably at one time or another picked a leaf of a milkweed plant and observed its milky sap start to flow from the plant; hence its name. Like all plants, the milkweed contains a myriad of chemical compounds that are used by the plant in various ways.  Read more

Shine on, harvest moon

I am by no means the only guy with an opinion. In fact, I’ve been told that “everyone has one.” Go figure. Of course, if we all felt the same way about any of a myriad of subjects, life would be just plain dull. Pausing to breathe once in a while, I sometimes hear snippets of conversation that apparently take place all around me, while I am not talking. Or the center of attention. Hmm.  Read more

Learning from one another: Transition Honesdale builds community through sharing skills

HONESDALE, PA — When Hurricane Irene hit the area, even though it put people in the dark for a while, it also woke up a lot of people.

What are we going to do without electricity? Without refrigeration? Without water for washing and flushing toilets? Without food from the supermarket?

These are some of the questions asked during the storm. Were any of them answered?

Answering questions like this is the concern of a local group called Transition Honesdale which is initiating a major new program called “SkillShare.”  Read more

‘Singing’ for their supper

The first few months of life present many challenges for wild creatures, not the least of which is receiving adequate sustenance to survive. Baby birds are particularly fetching as they gape with beaks open wide in anticipation of a meal. Where that meal comes from depends on circumstances.  Read more

The greatest love of all

At the risk of sounding cliché, “I believe the children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way.” These sage words (written by Michael Masser and Linda Creed) reverberated all week as I made my way through the Catskills, observing young people and sensing “all the beauty they possess inside.”  Read more

Zen Buddhist center opens in Honesdale

A wonderfully funny cartoon appeared in The New Yorker magazine a few years ago. It showed two monks fully clothed in their habits, sitting in a cross-legged position of meditation. One monk was an old man, prune-faced and annoyed, and the other was a puzzled callow youth. Under the cartoon was the following caption: “What do you mean ‘what happens next!’ This is it.”  Read more

That’s absurd

I am writing this a few days after Irene left town. Nearly twice the size of a typical hurricane on August 26, she joins nine others weather disasters so far this year that have each caused one billion dollars in damages and 589 deaths. The New York Times called Irene “one of the 10 costliest catastrophes in the nation’s history.”  Read more

Irene brings wild weather

As I write this column, I hear the hum of portable generators outside the window. I have power, but neighbors down the road are out and have been since Irene swept through the area on August 28. Tropical-storm-force winds blew down trees and caused widespread power outages throughout the area, and heavy rains caused flooding and washouts on roads. Several instances of residential flooding were reported, and many farm fields were flooded.  Read more

September 11, 2001: The day the earth stood still

On September 11, 2001 life as we know it changed forever. At 9:59 EST, the unthinkable occurred when Al Qaeda-affiliated hijackers flew two jets into the World Trade Center towers. The approaching 10th anniversary of the event has stirred up a flood of memories for millions worldwide. For many of us, it has become an opportunity to work through this experience by sharing those memories with one another. Here is mine.  Read more

Wanted: wing and chili maestros

HONESDALE, PA — The Greater Honesdale Partnership (GHP) along with help from Rent-E-Quip, will hold the sixth annual Wing and Chili Taste-Off during this year’s “Harvest & Heritage Days,” to be held on Sunday, October 9 on Main Street, from 12 noon to 4 p.m.  Read more

Oral history project: get involved

WESTERN SULLIVAN COUNTY, NY — In the fall of 2011, the Western Sullivan Public Library (WSPL), with support from a Sullivan County Arts and Heritage Grant, will sponsor six free introductory courses in the art of oral history. WSPL will provide simple beginner training in approach, ethics, methods, technology, interviewing, presentation and preservation in hopes that volunteers can collect local oral histories for our new “Unearthed: Oral Histories of the Upper Delaware River” project.  Read more

PaPA holds art finale

WHITE MILLS, PA — ArtSpace at PaPA (Parker and Parker Art) will open its fall exhibition, “MAD: Music, Art and Dance,” on Saturday, September 10 from 5 to 7 p.m.

PaPA will partner with Marsha Ismail-off and the Alexander W. Dreyfoos School of the Arts, Palm Beach, FL, with the original “Pas de Trois” performance, called “Does Art Imitate Life.” Fine artist and Russian ballet master Ismailoff has cross-referenced art and dance in a unique video performance.  Read more

Harvest Festival: Airing of the Quilts

BETHEL, NY — Bethel Woods Center will partner with Calico Geese Quilters for the third annual Airing of the Quilts on Sunday, September 11 at the Harvest Festival. This year’s event will include community quilt-making activities inspired by the Boise Idaho Quilt Project, which originated with women activists of the ‘60s. The idea is to invite the community to participate in making quilts that celebrate our common threads and our diversity.  Read more