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September 25, 2016
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MILFORD, PA — At most writers’ festivals, there is no interaction between the writer and the people who read their words—the reader. No dialogue, just lecture. The first Milford Readers and Writers Festival wants to do it differently, to break the mold of the literary festival. When Milford mayor and owner of the Hotel Fauchere, Sean Strub, got together with friends for dinner one evening, they fantasized about creating a literary festival in Milford. Less than six months later, a group of 10 to 15 volunteers set out to make that dream a reality.

“To live is so startling it leaves little time for anything else…” So said Emily Dickinson, the eminent poet of microcosm and wonder.

I think of this as I sort through the laundry, sweep up...

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The past few weeks have been challenging, not only personally, but for many I have come into contact with as well. Even though I tend to think of myself as the guy who reports on the good times...

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In a week or two, huge numbers of broad-winged hawks will fill the skies in some areas like Hawk Mountain in PA or Sunrise Mountain in New Jersey. That will be near-peak migration time for them as...

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Well… I’m not at all sure that I “oughta be,” but as it happens, I am this week. Usually, I’m pretty busy on the other side of the camera, attempting to capture all that is happening throughout...

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Myths and misunderstandings abound in nature and can lead to undesirable outcomes. Such is the case when it comes to two plants that flower at this time of year. One of them provokes an allergic...

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Next time you’re in your favorite local grocery store, take a little stroll down the breakfast cereal aisle. Plant yourself in front of the Cheerios section, and start counting. How many different...

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Music for ministry

HONESDALE, PA — A number of area bands and musicians will perform to raise money for the work of the Honesdale Area Ministerium on Saturday, September 7 in Central Park. Music will be playing on the stage from 12 noon to 7 p.m., interrupted at 5 p.m. for an ecumenical service of Holy Communion. Pastor Rob Kazinski from Central United Methodist Church will be the guest preacher, with Leanna and JR Stanton of Damascus United Methodist leading the music and Father Ed Erb worship leader.  Read more

First Friday at the library

NARROWSBURG, NY — The First Fridays Contemporary Author Series will be held at the Narrowsburg Branch of the Western Sullivan Public Library with Rachel McKibbens and Jacob Rakovan on Friday, September 6. At 7 p.m. is the open mic sign-up (10 spots only, three minutes or less); 7:30 p.m. is open mic and 8 p.m. are readings by the visiting authors.

Rakovan is an Appalachian writer in Diaspora. He is a 2011 New York Foundation for the Arts Fellow in poetry. His work has appeared in numerous journals. He is co-curator of the Poetry & Pie Night reading series in Rochester.  Read more

House concert slated for world-traveled musician

CALLICOON, NY — Guitarist Randall Williams, a classically trained musician who left the world of classical music to travel with his guitar, sing and play on street corners and in cafés and pubs, as well as at the Fine Arts Palace in Brussels, Belgium and the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, will perform at a house concert in Callicoon on Saturday, August 31 at 7 p.m. The concert will be preceded by a potluck supper at 6 p.m.  Read more

Upchurch paintings on display

BARRYVILLE, NY — An art exhibition, “Through the Eyes of Wendell M. Upchurch,” will be on view on Saturday, August 31 from 7 to 9 p.m. at the River Market, 3385 Rte. 97. This event is the fourth in a series of collaborations between the market and UpFront Exhibition Space of Port Jervis, which owns the rights to much of Upchurch’s collection of paintings. Upchurch died 13 years ago.  Read more

‘Reading, Rolling & Rhythm’ coming to Livingston Manor

LIVINGSTON MANOR, NY — The Livingston Manor Labor Day Parade (formerly of DeBruce) will be held on Sunday, September 1, with the parade on Main Street, and entertainment and more at Renaissance Park, located at the intersection of Main and Pearl streets (at the traffic light). The festivities begin at 11 a.m. with the old-fashioned country-style parade starting at 12 noon.  Read more

Star Struck

Labor Day is upon us and summer is almost gone. While in no hurry, I’m a big fan of fall and looking forward to the harvest festivals, pumpkin parties, costume parades and of course, Halloween. Not wanting to get ahead of myself, I did my best to stay in the moment during the past week, which turned out to be all music all the time. As the season winds down, so does the hoopla at Bethel Woods (www.bethelwoodscenter.org) and in the past few days, I attended, met with and photographed Philip Phillips, John Mayer, Florida Georgia Line, Thompson Square and Luke Bryan.  Read more

Punk pigs, cool chefs; A foodie fest in Narrowsburg

You could smell it before you could see it. The tantalizing aroma of fresh-cooked food, filled with flavor and promises of a soon-to-be feast, permeated the air. It was Pig Mountain, and it had arrived on Main Street in Narrowsburg, NY to 2,500 hungry people.  Read more

Lake Huntington News August 29

What a busy weekend: down to Queens and back in the same day for my sister’s 60th birthday; had a good time seeing all of the family. My mother was really missed; she was in all of our thoughts and prayers.  Read more

Lake Huntington News August 22

Have you ever been to a pig roast? In the last two weeks, I have been to two. The Knights of Columbus held one at Holy Cross Church on Sunday the 11. My brother is the Grand Knight, and he asked me to stop by and help him. He did not need me; the wives of the knights did a great job setting up and supplying the food. When I got there, I went over to him and he asked me to carry some pig down to the oven. I said, “OK,” and he gave me a metal tray with the head in it. Gross, gross, gross.  Read more

Mid-summer dragonfly watch

Along the shore of any given body of water, whether it’s a lake, river or stream, insects are usually very obvious. There may be some flies hatching out, butterflies and moths, and even some pesky mosquitoes or other biting bugs. The pesky biters are in jeopardy themselves from another group of insects that are on the prowl—the odonata family, or dragonflies and damselflies.  Read more

The last green drake

Boyd Corners Reservoir is the uppermost New York City reservoir on what was once the West Branch of the Croton River. Its outlet flows for barely a half mile before it empties into West Branch Reservoir.

Barbara and I spent many happy hours learning how to fish with a fly on this short stretch of water. There, in 1950, I caught my first trout on a fly. That fish took a Brown Bivisible, which was the only dry fly I was capable of tying.  Read more

An engaging column

I was nervous as Emily and I left our apartment and headed to the Union Square subway stop to catch the Q train up to the Paris Theater. We were headed to the theater under the guise of a test screening for the crime documentary I’ve been editing forever. I had a DVD in my backpack—along with an engagement ring.

The DVD did not have the crime documentary on it but instead had a cute little movie I made about my trip to get said engagement ring. Save for Emily and me, the theater would be empty, and when the seven-minute movie was over I was going to propose.  Read more

Contra dance at The Cooperage

HONESDALE, PA — The Ragtag Rutabagas and The Cooperage Project will hold a special, “Goodbye Summer, Hello Fall” contra dance at The Cooperage on Saturday, August 24 from 7:30 to 10 p.m. Before the dancing begins, around 6:30 p.m. there will be time to socialize with friends and fellow dancers and the contra dance team and refreshments.  Read more

Ceramic artists open show in Youngsville

YOUNGSVILLE, NY — “Containing the Abundance of Summer,” a new show featuring the works of ceramic artists Kathy Jeffers and Chris Parrow, opens at Domesticities at 4055 State Route 52 on Saturday, August 24 with an artists’ reception at 3 p.m.

In her Woodbourne studio, Jeffers uses lace and plants to create lush textures in her hand-built pieces. Her coiled and gathered work adds emphasis to richly colored glazes.  Read more

Rare tour of Wallenpaupack dam offered

LAKE WALLENPAUPACK, PA — Pennsylvania Power & Light (PPL) will conduct free tours of the dam at Lake Wallenpaupack, on Saturday, August 24 and Sunday, August 25 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tours will include access to the dam itself for a rare view of the lake and the dry riverbed where the Wallenpaupack Creek once flowed, and of the hydroelectric plant on the Lackawaxen River at Kimbles. Hear about the history of how the dam was built, and learn about the increase in energy demand since the power plant began operating in the 1920s.  Read more

Harmonica lesson at the library

PORT JERVIS, NY — Learn to play the harmonica on Saturday, August 24 from 1 to 2:45 p.m. at the Port Jervis Library in the basement Community Room. This is a beginner’s class; no musical talent is required. The teacher is master harmonicist Patti Gessner. Students will learn how to play a piece of music by the end of the program, and afterward will take their new harmonicas home.  Read more

Neversink Valley Museum presents an evening of bluegrass and folk

CUDDEBACKVILLE, NY — The Neversink Valley Museum presents an evening of Americana and Bluegrass music featuring Hudson Valley favorites Anne Loeb and Mike Baglione on Saturday, August 24, at 7:30 p.m. at the D&H Canal Visitor’s Center. Admission costs $7 general admission, $5 for museum members.  Read more

Dueling wizards in the age of Internet

HIGHLAND LAKE, NY — The NACL Theatre will present “Black Wizard/Blue Wizard,” starring Eliza Bent and Dave Malloy, on Saturday, August 24 at 7:30 p.m.  Read more

Pig Mountain draws chefs from NYC to Narrowsburg

NARROWSBURG, NY — Pig Mountain will be held on Saturday, August 24 on Main Street of Narrowsburg from 4 to 8 p.m. There will be 14 chefs cooking 14 pigs 14 different ways. Each chef will also prepare a vegetarian option. Wine will be sold by Narrowsburg Fine Wines and Spirits and The Heron will be selling beer.

The $30 admission price gets you 10 tickets each of which can be redeemed for a dish from 10 chefs or all from one chef or any way you like.  Read more

Guess who’s coming to dinner

Just when I thought I had seen (and heard) it all, along comes the Zac Brown Band (ZBB). I know a little bit about a lot of things, but ZBB was not on my radar, save for the knowledge that the band is wildly popular and that their one-night-only appearance at Bethel Woods sold out very quickly.  Read more