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September 15, 2014
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Photos by Anya Tikka

NORTH BRANCH, NY — Cigar box guitars—made from cigar boxes, as the name suggests, or almost any other kind of box that serves as a resonator— have served generations of musicians. Some of them simply couldn’t afford to buy a regular guitar and some went on to become famous, including music legends Jimmy Hendrix and Paul McCartney, said Mike “Katfish” Karash at his recent workshops at the Old North Branch Inn. Most folks who play them don’t make it that far but simply enjoy playing or making the instruments.

When the water started to fall, my first thought was that it was raining. But the downpour seemed much closer and not muffled by the windows of our apartment.

My second thought was that I...

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Many people who venture outdoors will recognize the red-winged blackbird for what it is; a black bird with red or yellow shoulder patches. However, if the same people see a streaky brown bird...

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I got some shocked questions recently from friends horrified by gruesome reports of birds fatally burned mid-air at a solar energy facility in the Mohave Desert. Buried in the news coverage was...

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Yes, it’s here. Actually, by the time this column hits the stands, September’s full moon will have come and gone, but still… even if I wanted to stop the seasons from changing I cannot. Autumn has...

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I remember a very early morning when the Great South Bay where I grew up was smooth as glass. I had just gotten back from college, and I was very happy to be home. I stood on the beach and looked...

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Fifty years ago, on September 3, 1964, the Wilderness Act was signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson, following 60 drafts authored primarily by Howard Zahniser of The Wilderness Society...

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Coffee Shop

Our Hero comes upon the roadblock with disappointment but not surprise.

“Just keep going through,” he says to his female companion, ”I’ll meet you on the other side.”

And with that, he rolls out of the car in one quick motion, popping up on his feet behind an SUV.  Read more

Here comes Santa Claus!

Every year at this time, I read statistics regarding how folks from all walks of life fall prey to depression and sadness during the holidays, and I felt as if I was about to join the ranks this week. Being constantly bombarded by the commercialism of the season doesn’t help, since I know in my heart that the celebrations of different faiths really have little to do with money and that millions of people around the globe are rejoicing from a spiritual point of view.  Read more

The schools are alive,with the sound of music!

REGION — Elementary, middle and high schools in the region are gearing up for the holidays and sharing the gift of music with fellow students, parents and visitors alike as a variety of seasonal concerts are scheduled across the area. These musical presentations are designed to appeal and present a perfect opportunity for both children and adults to gather, celebrate and ring in the holidays, with programs that will inspire and entertain...Catskills-style.

Sullivan West celebrates the season  Read more

Tick tips

Without doubt, one of the least appealing residents of the Upper Delaware River region is the tick. These blood-sucking parasites have proliferated along both sides of the river, increasing the risk of exposure to certain infections for humans and for animals.  Read more

Dinner diving

Fall always brings some feathered visitors to the region that are not full time residents here. From golden eagles and loons to snow buntings, they all provide a great variety of wildlife viewing during migration season. One species that is commonly seen around starting in October is interesting in that it has to dive for its dinner.  Read more

You've got to have friends

Before I drove to Pittsburgh, PA to celebrate Thanksgiving with friends, I thought about all of the songs that have been written on the subject and selected my CDs for the ride with that in mind. Nostalgic to a fault, I prepared myself for the eight-hour drive by choosing the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ “Road Trippin’” to begin my journey, and headed out in the pouring rain—which stayed with me throughout the 400 miles, door to door.  Read more

Tours, art exhibit at Grey Towers

MILFORD, PA — As part of its holiday schedule, Grey Towers National Historic Landmark will host special holiday tours from Monday through Friday, December 5 through 9 and 12 through 16 at 1 and 3 p.m. The mansion has been decorated for the holidays by the Milford Garden Club. The cost of the tour is $4 per person.  Read more

Celebrate Christmas with the Wayne Choralaires

HONESDALE, PA — The Wayne Choralaires’ holiday program this year, “Forever Christmas,” is a mix of popular sacred and secular songs including a medley of traditional hymns, Meredith Willson’s “It’s Beginning to Look Like Christmas,” the gospel-inspired “Whisper! Whisper!” Randall Thompson’s “The Last Words of David” and Handel’s “Hallelujah, Amen” from “Judas Maccabaeus.” The concert, under the direction of Patricia Spoor, will be at 7 p.m. at Central United Methodist Church, 11th and Church streets, Honesdale.  Read more

Trains on Main

LIVINGSTON MANOR, NY — On Saturday, December 3, the Livingston Manor Chamber of Commerce will kick off Holiday Trains on Main, a nostalgic trip back in time with handmade model trains on view at the Catskill Arts Society (CAS) Arts Center and Morgan Outdoors. A kick-off reception will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. at the CAS Arts Center, 48 Main Street. It will feature a Lionel standard gauge set and several other train layouts, a holiday sing-a-long with the MountainTones, and a special visit by Santa. Cake and cider will be served in celebration of CAS’s 40th birthday.  Read more

Theme trees at the museum

HURLEYVILLE, NY — The Sullivan County Historical Society’s annual Theme Tree exhibit will open on Sunday, December 4, from 2 to 4 p.m., with musical entertainment. There will be holiday gift buying with books by local authors for sale and refreshments. The event will be held at the Sullivan County Museum at 265 Main St.
The exhibit will be on display through December. The snow date is December 11. Call 845/434-8044.

Roscoe tree lighting

ROSCOE, NY — The Roscoe Chamber of Commerce and Friends of Chamber will hold a tree lighting on Sunday, December 11 at 7 p.m. at Riverside Park. Visitors can follow luminaries down the path to the lighting of the holiday tree, where there will be caroling, hot cocoa and baked goods.

Holiday craft fair

GRAHAMSVILLE, NY — The Grahamsville United Methodist Church will host a holiday craft fair and luncheon on Saturday, December 3, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the fellowship hall. The church is located on Route 55 in Grahamsville. There will be watercolors, pottery, stained glass, baked goods and more. The Christmas Café will offer soups, sandwiches and desserts for lunch. Call 985-7427 or 985-2283.

‘Hungry Hour’ supports food pantries

CALLICOON, NY — Third Premise Theater will present “The Hungry Hour: A Night of One-Act Plays and Poetry” to benefit the local food pantries of Sullivan County on Friday, December 2 and Saturday, December 3 at the Delaware Youth Center, 8 Creamery Rd. at 8 p.m.
The company was started as a Masters Acting Project by Jeffersonville native Tom Brennan to bring open and accessible theater to his home town. Since then, it has performed in NYC and upstate New York. The suggested donation is $15. Email thirdpremisetheater@hotmail.com.

Manor holds decorating contest

LIVINGSTON MANOR, NY — The Roscoe-Rockland Garden Club, in conjunction with Liberty Home, Garden & Pet, Inc. in Liberty, will once again hold the annual Holiday Decorating Contest in Livingston Manor. Entries will be judged on artistic merit, suitability and eye appeal. There will be first-, second- and third-place awards for both private homes and business/public buildings.  Read more

Holiday parade in Liberty

LIBERTY, NY — The Town of Liberty Parks and Recreation Department will host its first annual Town of Liberty Holiday Parade in conjunction with the town’s annual holiday tree lighting ceremony on Friday, December 2 at 6 p.m. Line-up will begin at 5 p.m. at the municipal parking lots behind the Elks Lodge. The parade will proceed through Main Street and end at the Liberty Elementary School. The snow date will be December 3.  Read more

DVAA extends holiday hours

NARROWSBURG, NY — Delaware Valley Arts Alliance (DVAA), located at 37 Main St., will extend its hours during the holiday season while it hosts Valley Artists Holiday Sale and Art in Sixes. Gallery and store hours through Wednesday, December 21, are Tuesday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.  Read more

Lighting up Milford

MILFORD, PA — The Milford Business Council and Milford Lions Club will host the annual tree lighting on the grounds of the Community House on Saturday, December 3. A celebration including refreshments, glow-sticks and community caroling will begin at 5 p.m. The lighting of the Christmas tree will occur at 6 p.m., when the trees lining the downtown streets and the star on the Knob will also be lit. Afterward, Santa Claus will arrive in town on top of Milford Fire Department Engine 33 with a team of reindeer.  Read more

‘Transformation and the Grinch’

BEACH LAKE, PA — The Upper Delaware Unitarian Universalist Fellowship will kick off its month-long exploration of transformation with a lively musical multi-generation service called “Transformation and the Grinch.” on Sunday, December 4 at 10:15 a.m. Using spoken word and small songs, accompanied by a lap harp, service leader Laurie Stuart will “read” How the Grinch Stole Christmas and create a service that celebrates the idea that Christmas, stripped of all of its trappings, has the ability to transform.  Read more

Holiday activities in Honesdale

HONESDALE, PA — A number of special activities will take place in Honesdale over the coming week, including the Highlights for Children open house at 803 Church St. on Saturday, December 3 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The free event includes treats, entertainment, a children’s craft room, puppetry and more. Also on Saturday, you can get winter photos of your pet, your child or both at The Cat’s Pajamas, 107 8th St. from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., with all proceeds benefiting Dessin Animal Shelter.  Read more

Caroling and tree lighting in Narrowsburg

NARROWSBURG, NY — Narrowsburg will kick off the season with carols and a tree and street lighting on the Main Street observation deck on Saturday, December 3 at 5:30 p.m. There will be favors for the kids and an appearance by Santa in a firetruck. This month, the SkyDog Supper Club will start the evening at the lighting event, then move on to the town hall from 6:30 to 9:00 for a potluck supper, where the future of the Narrowsburg School property will be the featured topic.

Tue., Sep. 16 Cub Scout Pack 71 Recruitment Event
Wed., Sep. 17 YEL! FEST #6
Thu., Sep. 18 Pork dinner
Fri., Sep. 19 Silverstein: A Theatrical Reading