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December 10, 2016
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PORT JERVIS, NY — Since 2013 the Port Jervis Tourism Board has sponsored Christkindlmarkt, which is promoted as a family event in the tradition of markets held in Germany during the holiday season.

This year the market is scheduled to take place on November 27 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Jersey Avenue in Port Jervis.

Having expectations is natural, I suppose, but sometimes lead to heartache. As with most things, there are “two sides to every coin,” and while expectations are a good thing when setting goals, it...

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The 2016 fishing season is all but over. The huge issue facing America has not yet been fully settled or resolved. I am speaking, of course of whether fly fishing trumps all other fishing methods...

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Photo caption: If you are concerned about the impacts of monofilament debris on wildlife, volunteer to maintain a recycling bin at your favorite fishing spot, marina or dock. Visit...

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Well, I was hoping by the Friday after the election, things would return to normal in the third car of the 5:07 a.m. out of Port Jervis; silly me. It had been a slow boil to Tuesday’s election and...

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So here’s the thing about writing a “personal” column—it’s personal. On one hand, that makes my job easier, since I am recounting my own experience here in the Upper Delaware River region and...

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Reports from Mexico indicate that monarch butterflies have started to stream into their overwintering grounds at the volcanic hills near Aputzio de Juarez (about 100 miles west of Mexico City)...

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‘Once Upon a Mattress’ at Monticello High School

MONTICELLO, NY — Monticello High School presents the musical, “Once Upon A Mattress,” a comical twist on the fairy tale “The Princess and the Pea.” Performances are at the Arnold Packer Hughs Auditorium in Monticello High School on Friday, March 28 and Saturday, March 29 at 7:30 p.m. This all-student production show is appropriate for all ages. Tickets cost $5 for adults, $3 for students.

Oil paintings at The River Gallery

NARROWSBURG, NY — The River Gallery-The Art of Living, 8 Main St., launches its 2014 season with an opening reception for “Country Views, Catskill Landscapes” by Jay Brooks on Saturday, March 29 from 6 to 8 p.m. The exhibit features realistic renderings of landscapes in oil and is on display until May 17.  Read more

Music to my ears

Having survived the flu and determined to join the real world once again, I had a spring in my step when Skytop Farm (www.skytopfarmny.com) manager Jen Franklin called to inform me that there were new foals to visit, so I slipped a CD in the player, put pedal to the metal and drove myself to the sprawling acreage that is home to the thoroughbred horses that call Skytop home. The breeding farm that boasts “around the clock care for your mare during and after her pregnancy” is a bucolic setting nestled in the hills above Roscoe, NY, and the two new colts were as precious as possible.  Read more

Every drop counts Students study water conservation, paint rain barrels

PIKE AND WAYNE COUNTIES — Linda Lohner teaches biology at the Wallenpaupack Area High School in Pike County, where she and her fellow science teachers are currently developing a new curriculum.Every Wednesday, after the final bell rings, Lohner and a group of students who are passionate about the environment and outdoor activities meet in her classroom to learn about and experience the natural world outside of school.  Read more

Green light: The transition to spring

Despite the cold front predicted for next week, I know that spring is on its way. A couple of hellebores (gardening.about.com/od/plantprofile1/p/Hellebore_Pro.htm) have managed to poke up through the snow, determined and perhaps just a bit reckless. I’m looking forward to tramping into the wet woods in search of vernal pools and the salamanders and frogs that inhabit them.  Read more

Meeting Annie

Lately, I realize I take a lot for granted: everyday things such as the warmth of a sunny day, the laughter of children and the first bloom of the forsythia indicating the birth of another spring. When I first met Annie, I was moving into the last car of the train and noticed she was the only one in the car. Strange for the car to be empty, I thought, I would have passed without a second notice except she spoke to me saying hello and asking if Harriman was next. She had a pleasant voice and was looking right at me, hard to ignore and just walk on.  Read more

Give critters a brake

A couple of weeks back, I took a trip up and down the river, and up and around Lackawaxen and Shohola townships. There was lots of wildlife present on the river and above. What was more significant was the wildlife tally observed on the roadway on this trip of 30 or so miles. The critter road tally was nine turkey, seven deer (four different locations), a couple of crows feeding on road kill, and one opossum calmly walking along the shoulder.  Read more

Roots and Rhythm Festival announced

HONESDALE, PA — The Honesdale Roots & Rhythm Music and Arts Festival began nine years ago as an endeavor to bring music art to Honesdale’s Central Park. Over the course of the last nine years, visitors to Roots & Rhythm have increased exponentially: last year’s event drawing approximately 7,000 attendees. This year’s festival is scheduled for Saturday, June 21. Plans are well underway, and there is a need for sponsors and volunteers. For more information on how you can help, contact info@honesdalerootsandrhythm.com.

Discussion on pop culture at the library

NARROWSBURG, NY — The Western Sullivan Public Library will hold the ongoing program “Pop Matters with Kevin McDonough: A Conversation where Media, Culture, and Entertainment Meet.” Pop Matters will be a conversation about popular culture with a new topic every month.  Read more

CAS Public Tour Series returns

LIVINGSTON MANOR, NY — The Catskill Art Society will continue its Public Tour Series, a deeper look at the themes and subjects of its juried exhibitions in an interactive guided tour. The upcoming tour will focus on Christopher Vernale’s solo photography show, featuring his series “Child’s Play” and “Wherever You Go,” at the CAS Arts Center on Saturday, March 22 at 2 p.m. This event is free, and small donations will be accepted at the door.  Read more

Salon Series features Jazzmosis

NARROWSBURG, NY — The Delaware Valley Arts Alliance Salon Series presents Jazzmosis on Sunday, March 23 at 2 p.m. The rock/jazz fusion quartet, founded in 2011, is made up of musicians who come together from varied musical backgrounds. Their sound combines the energy of rock with the improvisational brilliance of jazz.  Read more

Writers’ Circle presents book reading and signing with local authors

HONESDALE, PA — The Writers’ Circle of Wayne County invites the public to join them at The Cooperage on Sunday, March 23, from 2 to 6 p.m. for a reading and book sale. Come and discover several local authors you may not have heard from before. Share wine, cheese and conversation with us, then relax and let us entertain you with selections from our latest works: “Power in the Blood” by Bernard LoPinto; “Counting the Days-366 Days in Prison” by Leslie Rutkin; “Birds on a Wire,” by Will Wyckoff; and “Zookeeper” by Dawn McIntyre. The presentation, moderated by Aleta Kahn, will begin at 3 p.m.  Read more

Dave Matthews Band opener returns to the Hawley Silk Mill

HAWLEY, PA — On Saturday, March 22 at 7:30 p.m., Harmony Presents welcomes back the Nat Osborn Band. They were last in Hawley this past November and played to a sold out crowd in the Boiler Room of the Hawley Silk Mill.  Read more

‘Vintage Pain,’ an installation by Sally Rowe

NARROWSBURG, NY — “Vintage Pain,” an installation by Sally Rowe, opens with a reception on Saturday, March 22 from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Delaware Arts Center’s Alliance Gallery. The exhibit will be on view through April 19.  Read more

Hope springs eternal

It’s no secret that I’ve had a bad attitude over the weather for the past few months. I’ve moaned, complained and whined incessantly about the cold, the snow and ice. Like many of you, I had come to the conclusion that it just wouldn’t end and that spring would never arrive at all. According to the calendar, as of today, spring is officially in the air. Hmm. Oh sure, there are signs of life. Yesterday, from my sick bed, I saw my first robin and quietly rejoiced.  Read more

Holistic help for animals; Aid through acupressure and aromatherapy

SHOHOLA, PA — Folks gathered at a recent seminar on animal acupressure and aromatherapy, given by certified holistic animal practitioner Kristy Boki. All were there because they care—deeply—about the well-being of their dogs.  Read more

My enemy (in the abstract)

“It’s not our job to toughen our children up to face a cruel and heartless world.

It’s our job to raise children who will make the world a little less cruel and heartless.”

― L.R. Knost

Every once in a while (as I may have observed here before), something comes across the Internet, amongst all the kitty-cat videos and trivial “Mmmm, nice lunch!” status updates, that make a reader stop dead for a moment.  Read more

First Jobs

What was your first job?

My first job was as a reporter at the Sullivan County Democrat in Callicoon, where I worked during the summers when I was home from college. It was an interesting time in our river valley—the National Park Service was holding public hearings on the Upper Delaware wild and scenic park plan, and there was lots of fist shaking and yelling going on. It was exciting, and eventually I even learned how to operate the 35mm camera so that my photos of those wild crowds came out in focus.  Read more

Double trouble

The first time Emily asked me what I thought about getting another dog I deflected the question.

Faithful readers will know that Emily and I have a French bulldog named Madeline. She’s getting on in years, and Emily had been reading that adding a young dog into the mix is known to extend an old dog’s life.  Read more

Spring Fling Party to welcome Catskill Mountainkeeper to Livingston Manor

Livingston Manor, NY — The Catskill Art Society (CAS) will join the town in welcoming Catskill Mountainkeeper to Livingston Manor with a Spring Fling Party at the CAS Arts Center on Saturday, March 22 from 5 to 8 p.m. All are welcome to attend for this casual seasonal bash.  Read more