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October 09, 2015
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Photo by Jason McDonald

It was mere coincidence that on the day I talked to Albert Hammond Jr., guitarist for The Strokes and a solo artist in his own right, the Internet was abuzz with talk (or rumor) that The Strokes are working on new music. Lead singer Julian Casablancas let it slip during their show at Landmark Music Festival in Washington, DC on September 27, saying, “We’ll be back soon. We’ll be back in the studio and sh*t.” Perhaps it could be created at Hammond Jr.’s recording studio/home in Eldred, NY?

After the death of our dog Aengus this summer, I spent my time searching online for dogs. Abashed by the fact that we had done the most politically incorrect thing by purchasing Aengus at a pet...

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An unlikely combination of words on the page to be sure, and yet… there they are. Although the Upper Delaware River region is hardly a stranger to filmmaking, I’ve never really considered the...

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People think of fall and for many, the first thing to come to mind is geese flying high overhead and winging their way south. This usually starts in earnest during the first part of October; the...

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Like a child’s haul of candy on Halloween, the environmental news over the past few months has been a mixed bag. First the treats, starting with the news that 36 companies around the world have...

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Well, my active life here in the Upper Delaware River region is anything but dull. Just to be sure that I was properly defining my state of being, I looked it up, since “active” means different...

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In August, I enjoyed the opportunity to participate in a walk into the heart—or “eye”—of the Tannersville Cranberry Bog in Monroe County, PA. In addition to experiencing the “quaking bog mat” that...

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The first night Emily and I spend in Beijing, we sit in a restaurant with a group of friends; a bottle of Jameson and a boom box rest on the table. The Jameson was bought at the airport and the boom box is blaring rap music. Surprisingly, no one at the restaurant says a word. Welcome to Beijing.

“There aren’t any rules here,” Greg, the groom of the wedding we are here attending, explains. “Don’t just look both ways when you cross the street, look all ways,” he pauses. “Traffic laws aren’t really enforced.”

We cross the streets with extreme caution.  Read more

Holiday art show

WURTSBORO, NY — The Wurtsboro Art Alliance’s annual holiday art show, which will run until December 23, features paintings, watercolors, drawings, photographs, sculptures, ceramics, prints and note cards. The year’s show is dedicated to John Neilson, the alliance’s founding member who recently passed away.

The alliance’s gallery is open Saturdays and Sundays from 12 to 4 p.m. or by appointment. Email or visit

An opera for Christmas

NARROWSBURG, NY — The Delaware Valley Opera will present “Amahl and the Night Visitors” by Gian Carlo Menotti twice this Christmas season. It will be at Bethel Woods Center for the Performing Arts on Saturday, December 8 at 2 p.m. Admission is free but a ticket is required. Crafts and dance for children will begin at 12:20 p.m. Make reservations at or call 845/583-2050.  Read more

Villalobos Brothers at The Cooperage

Honesdale, PA — New world music and classical fusion ensemble the Villalobos Brothers will play at The Cooperage on November 24 at 7 p.m. Mexican-born Ernesto, Alberto and Luis Villalobos will play music that blends the rhythms and melodies of their native Veracruz with the intricate harmonies of jazz and classical music.

Leading proponents of Latin music, the Villalobos Brothers have performed at Carnegie Hall, the Guggenheim Museum, Lincoln Center and on many other prestigious stages.

Visit or call 570/253-2020.

Holiday tree lighting in Roscoe

ROSCOE, NY — The Roscoe Chamber of Commerce announces the town’s annual holiday tree lighting celebration in Roscoe Riverside Park on Saturday, December 1 at 6:30 p.m. Follow the path of luminaries to the holiday tree location. Bring a candle or lantern to light up the night. There will be caroling, hot cocoa, s’mores and cookies. For further information, call 607/498-5397.

Popular choral group performs for the holidays

HONESDALE, PA — The Wayne Choralaires will launch the choral group’s annual series of holiday concerts with two performances on Sunday, November 25 at 2:30 and 7 p.m. at Central United Methodist Church, 205 Eleventh St. to be followed by concerts in Carbondale and Hawley over the ensuing week. This year’s program of popular sacred and secular songs is entitled “Because It’s Christmas.”  Read more

Milford church to hold annual Christmas tea

MILFORD, PA — An authentic Christmas Tea will be served at the Church of the Good Shepherd and St. John the Evangelist, 110 W. Catherine St. on Saturday, December 1 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., with the last seating at 2:30 p.m. Open to the public, the classic English-styled tea will include three food courses and a wide variety of teas served in vintage tea sets. Coffee and hot chocolate also will be served and a children-friendly menu will be available. The Christmas Tea has been a tradition at this Episcopal Church for over 50 years.  Read more

A benefit with good taste

HAWLEY, PA — The Falls Port Inn and Restaurant will host a “Taste of Wayne County” all day long on Wednesday, December 5. Any customer who eats at the restaurant at any time that day will see a portion of their meal payment donated to the Wayne County Historical Society. To contact the Falls Port, call 570/226-2600. On the first Wednesday of each month, a different Wayne County restaurant hosts a similar event to benefit the historical society.

Salon De La Musique at the Delmonico Room

MILFORD, PA — Noted flute player (and former resident of Pike County) Allison Kiger will lead a trio Friday, November 23 at 5:30 p.m. at the Hotel Fauchère’s Delmonico Room, 401 Broad St. Violist Jeff Ellenberger and cellist Robert Tennen join Kiger for a light program of classical favorites, Broadway tunes and ragtime. Tickets cost $20 for the concert alone, or $35 to also attend a reception featuring hors d’oeuvres and an opportunity to talk with the artists.

Contact the Hotel Fauchère at 570/409-1212.

Brass players sought for Christmas performance

LIBERTY, NY — As part of the Liberty Tree Lighting Ceremony on December 7 at 7 p.m. there will be a performance of the first ever Holiday for Brass. All local tuba, baritone and trombone players are invited to play. Local music instructors, their students and community members who can play a lower brass instrument will be welcomed. There will be two non-mandatory rehearsals, on November 27 and November 29 at 7 p.m. at Charlie Barbuti’s Furniture Store, 199 South Main St. Come to either rehearsal or just come to play on December 7. Email or call 845/292-4826.

Holiday craft fair

BEACH LAKE, PA — There will be a holiday craft fair at the Beach Lake Firehall on Saturday, November 24 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. There is a donation of $1 per adult. Food and beverages will be available for purchase and there will be door prizes. Sponsored by the Beach Lake Fire Company Auxiliary.

Make your own gift tags and cards for the holidays

PORT JERVIS, NY — A class in paper crafts, including lessons in how to make handmade cards or gift tags for the Christmas holidays, will be offered at The Hub at the Port Jervis Free Library on Monday, November 26 from 4 to 5:30 p.m. This hands-on program will be led by Anna Seniw, owner of The Creative Corner, and everyone will have the opportunity to create a card and Christmas tag to take away.

Pre-registration is required by visiting or calling 845/772-7586.

First annual blues and music festival

ROCK HILL, NY — Midnight Slim/Fred Scribner, a former member of the Levon Helm Band, and The Sullivan, present the first annual Sullivan County Blues and Music Fest on November 23 and 24 at The Sullivan, featuring regional and national blues and music acts including Alexis P Suter, Chris O’Leary, Murali Coryell, Big Joe Fitz, Petey Hop, Bobby Kyle, Frank Latorre, Midnight Slim, Dan Brother, Pauly DiDio, Rob Cannillo, Ken Bowles and more special guests.  Read more

Thanks for giving!

“Charity begins at home,” Thomas Fuller wrote, “but should not end there.” With Thanksgiving upon us, it’s time once again to take stock and give thanks, which is easy (for me, anyhow) to lose sight of in the workaday world of bills, stress and everyday worries that sometimes seem insurmountable.  Read more

Lights... camera... action!; Movie crew sets up shop in the Catskills

The Upper Delaware Valley has been an entertainment destination for decades, and having once flirted with Hollywood, the film industry recently returned to the region in the form of “Praise and Blame,” a short film shot entirely on location in the Catskills, wrapping production here on November 7. (Just so you know: In 1912, one of the first silent movies ever made in the U.S., “A Feud in the Kentucky Hills,” was filmed in the Catskill region. D.W. Griffith brought his troupe of 40 actors to Milford, PA to utilize the local terrain.  Read more

A special Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving, you may be staying home with your family to enjoy a traditional meal, or you may be traveling and choosing to join a celebration at a relative’s or friend’s house. Perhaps you choose to participate in a gathering sponsored by a soup kitchen or church. Some may have even preferred to go to a restaurant that offers a Thanksgiving buffet with all the trimmings.  Read more

A cautionary note about leaves

A week or so after Hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc on the northeast U.S. and our region, the sun has returned. Leaves that were left on the trees before the storm were blown down, along with a few of the trees. The trees have been cleared from the roadways and power has been restored, but many homeowners have blown-down trees or branches to contend with. Some of this blown-down debris has its own hidden hazard.  Read more

Hong Kong

Hong Kong is carved out of the side of a mountain. It’s right on the water and reminds me a bit of a futuristic Chicago. The skyline is a sea of brightly lit buildings, stretching up, big and tall into the sky. It makes New York City seem very squarely organized; Hong Kong does not follow the grid plan.

There are tons of people in the streets and many of the alleys are packed with tiny booths selling everything from food to watch parts to Halloween masks. (It’s the end of October.)  Read more

Where there’s a will...

If there was ever a doubt, this past week was proof positive that variety is indeed, the spice of life. As the Upper Delaware Valley began to return to normalcy, our hearts continue to be with those who are still digging out in Sandy’s wake. Thrilled to be home, I cleaned up the mess and got back to business, although I still have not found one of my missing shutters.  Read more

Learn to play the harmonica

PORT JERVIS, NY — A step-by-step “How to Play the Harmonica” program for beginners with Patti Gessner will take place on Saturday, November 17 from 3 to 4:45 p.m. at The Hub at the Port Jervis Library.  Read more

Thu., Nov. 13 Popular Google Apps
Thu., Nov. 13 Fall Foliage Mixer
Sat., Nov. 15 Fall square dance
Sat., Mar. 14 St. Patrick's Day Parade