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November 24, 2015
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TRR photo by Laura Silverman

Long before the Plymouth brethren sat down with the Wampanoag Tribe at the 1621 feast generally considered to be the first Thanksgiving, the Lenni Lenape occupied the Upper Delaware area, enjoying the bounty yielded by the land and the water, and holding ceremonies to thank the gods and spirits for it and to participate in its renewal. Unfortunately, the surviving information about many of these ceremonies is sparse. But we do know something about “Gamwing,” or the Big House Ceremony, a post-harvest festival that has some features similar to our own Thanksgiving.

According to Benjamin Franklin, both “stink after three days” (, and he very well may have been right. I tested...

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The natural world is endlessly interesting and many of us who are not scientists nevertheless devote careful attention to what we observe around us. That devotion is not wasted, and in fact, is...

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There are quite a few couples who commute regularly on the train. They have their routines like anyone else, and when they act as a team it is noticeable. Artie and Pat are one such couple. On any...

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With the big day looming, no doubt you’re giving some thought to what will grace your Thanksgiving table. Who am I kidding? You’re probably going to make the exact same menu as last year (and the...

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But, as Harper (“To Kill A Mockingbird”) Lee once famously said, “You can’t choose your family.” As Thanksgiving approaches, this ever-so-slightly paraphrased sentiment rings true for many of us,...

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On Friday, November 13, the sky at Sunrise Mountain at Stokes State Forest, NJ dawned red with broken clouds and a southwest wind of 10 to 15 mph. The wind wasn’t entirely favorable for migrating...

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A secular ceremony

When you’re short on religion, as is my family, you have to make your own ceremonies for important occasions. It helps if you have good planning skills. We don’t. In spite of all our shortcomings and recent obstacles, like my aunt’s stroke, we wanted to have a family memorial for my uncle at the place he loved best, on Fire Island. His cremains had been languishing since May on a marble mantelpiece in the townhouse he shared with his wife for the last 40 years of his life.  Read more

First Zane Grey Challenge

A field trip with a future

LACKAWAXEN, PA — “Is this the Hudson River?” asked one student, gesturing at the Delaware River as it flowed past the Zane Grey Museum in Lackawaxen. That’s exactly why Port Jervis Middle School science teacher Paddy McCarthy decided to resurrect and reconfigure an academic competition that he participated in while growing up in Narrowsburg, NY and still values highly today. “These are the kids that need to get out and be challenged and recognize what we have here,” he said.  Read more

‘Selected Works’ by Gloria Bernstein

HASBROUCK, NY — Local artist Gloria Bernstein will present “Selected Works” in an October exhibition at the Old Stone House of Hasbrouck at 282 Hasbrouck Rd.

The exhibition opens with a public reception on Saturday, October 6, from 2 to 4 p.m. Thereafter, the show is open on Saturdays and Sundays, 1 to 4 p.m., through October 28.

See selected works at


Tusten Theatre fall concert series begins with Catherine Russell

NARROWSBURG, NY — The Tusten Theatre starts its fall season by welcoming jazz and blues vocalist Catherine Russell with pianist Mark Shane on October 6, at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $27.

A native New Yorker, Catherine Russell has toured the world performing and recording with Paul Simon, David Bowie, Cyndi Lauper, Levon Helm and Rosanne Cash, among others.

The rest of the season includes Delaware Valley Chamber Orchestra’s “Narrowsburg Music Day” on October 13 and John Hammond on October 20.

Call 845/252-7272 or visit

Local bands perform at The Nutshell

LAKE HUNTINGTON, NY — Collabonation Productions and The Nutshell Arts Center will host local jam funk act The Great Danes on October 5. Doors open at 8 p.m. and music starts at 9 p.m. The band features the rhythm brothers Murray: Joe on drums and Sean on bass, as well as the guitar duo of Rob Cahill and Miguel Gonzales.

Also playing is Dizzy Feast, rock and funk magicians comprising of vocalist/guitarist Shane Andrewski, drummer Kyle Hector and bassist Jacob Whispell.

Tickets cost $6 at the door. There will be raffles and drink specials.  Read more

Outdoor Club Geocaching/GPS Walk

LIBERTY, NY — Sullivan County’s new Outdoor Club, formed by the Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) will host a Geocaching/GPS Walk on Friday, October 5 at 5:30 p.m. at the CCE Turtle Spring Nature Trail, 64 Ferndale-Loomis Rd.

Contact Nicole Slevin at or call 845/292-6180.

Pumpkin party and children’s parade

GRAHAMSVILLE, NY — The 27th annual Giant Pumpkin Party and Children’s Parade will be held on Saturday, October 6, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the fairgrounds.

A benefit for the Daniel Pierce Library, this old-time country fair and autumn festival has costume parades, pony rides, giant pumpkin growing contest, haunted house, petting zoo, live country music, hay rides, hay maze, a “Better” Book Sale, harvest baking contest, food and other amusements.

Call the Daniel Pierce Library at 845/ 985-7233 or visit

‘Reflections on Light’ art show

YOUNGSVILLE, NY —Domesticities & The Cutting Garden will present a new exhibition of custom lamps by Kathie Fitzgerald, glass sculpture and mobiles by Joan Nicole and photography by Joan Glase beginning Saturday, October 6 with a reception at 2 p.m. at 4055 Rte 52.

View the works on Saturdays and Sundays through the month of October. Call 845/482-3333 or visit

Catskill churches celebrate the harvest season

LIBERTY, NY — A concert of music, drama and dance will be held at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church on Sunday, October 7 at 3 p.m. The program will include piano and organ music, instrumental and voice solos, a skit, choral pieces and audience participation (hymn-singing). Light refreshments will be served following the concert. There is no admission charge, but donations of money and non-perishable food items will be accepted to benefit the needy in the communities of Liberty, Ellenville and Narrowsburg. St. Paul’s is located at 24 Chestnut St.

Call 845/292-4626.

Political songwriter Roy Zimmerman to perform

NORTH BRANCH, NY — Roy Zimmerman, who has driven 25,000 miles this year to fulfill his “campaign promise” of performing his satirical songs in all 50 states, brings his live show to North Branch on Saturday, October 13. His in-house concert, “Hope, Struggle and Change,” will include songs and comic commentary on presidential politics, the Occupy Movement, the Tea Party, abstinence, Creationism and same-sex marriage with a dose of Lefty rabble rousing thrown in.  Read more

City Lights Vocal Ensemble to perform

MILFORD, PA — City Lights, a five-piece vocal ensemble, will appear in concert at the Milford Theatre on Saturday, October 6, at 7 p.m. The group features tight vocal harmonies in the style of the Manhattan Transfer and 50’s Doo-Wop groups. Tickets cost $10 and will be available at the door.  Read more

Honesdale annual barbershop show

HONESDALE, PA — The Northeasters Honesdale Barbershop chorus of the Barbershop Harmony Society will present its 34th annual show, “Hollywood,” on Saturday, October 6, at 7 p.m. at Honesdale High School. The 24-person chorus of all ages is directed by Bob Mains. The guest professional barbershop quartet will be “Up All Night.” Tickets cost $10.

The chorus is always looking for additional singers. Rehearsal is every Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. at the Presbyterian Chapel at 10th and Church Streets in Honesdale.

Call Richard Bionda at 570/685-1554 or email

Conni’s Avant Garde Restaurant brings show to NACL

HIGHLAND LAKE, NY —A group of theatrical performers who call themselves Conni’s Avant Garde Restaurant will present the play, “Irina’s Name Day Party,” at the NACL Theatre on Saturday, October 13 at 7 p.m. For this performance, NACL’s theatre space will be transformed into a banquet hall and guests will be served food and drink.

Conni’s Avant Garde Restaurant is devoted to the ongoing celebration of the work of Conni Convergence, the beloved (and fictional) icon of stage and screen.  Read more

Sunday Night Cinema at Cinema 6

HONESDALE, PA —The Wayne County Arts Alliance Sunday Night Cinema series will feature a Monty-Python-styled comedy this week on Sunday, October 7 beginning at 8:15 p.m. In “Erik the Viking,” an unusually principled young Viking becomes increasingly uncomfortable with all the killing and plundering that goes with his job, and he sets out on a magical journey to bring about world peace.  Read more

Lakeside Players to present thriller ‘Scandal Point’

LAKEVILLE, PA — A scheming Southern belle, a crooked lawyer, a jilted husband, a shrewd police detective and a poisonous snake all take center stage in “Scandal Point,” The Lakeside Players’ fall production. The play is set for October 5, 6, 12 and 13 at 7:30 p.m., and October 7 and 14 at 3 p.m. at Lakeville Community Hall, Route 590.

“Scandal Point,” written by John Patrick, stars Kelly Ann Walsh as Joy Desmond, David J. Spitzer as Bruno Capra, Tony Schwartz as Dr. Kerwin Desmond and Frank DeSando as Detective Quinn. Roxan Schwartz is directing.  Read more

Filmmaking workshop for youth

NARROWSBURG, NY — Icehouse Arts filmmaking workshops for kids will be held the weekend of October 13 and 14. Students will write, direct, act, shoot and edit their own collaborative short film. The two-day workshop will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sunday at the Tusten-Cochecton Branch of the Western Sullivan Public Library. The program is recommended for ages 12 and up. The cost is $45.  Read more

Stinkhorn: a fly’s delight

The stinkhorn mushroom, aptly named for its offensive fragrance and stalklike form, is a member of a family of fungi known as Phallaceae. Stinkhorns are characterized by very unpleasant-smelling sticky spore masses that occur on the end of a stalk called the receptaculum.

Likened to the odor of carrion or dung, the spore mass attracts flies and other insects. While feeding on the slime, the insects’ feet become coated with the spore-laden substance that they then transport to other locations, allowing the stinkhorns to grow elsewhere.  Read more

A Bamboo ferrule?

The annual gathering of the world’s bamboo rod makers has come and gone. In my last column, I wrote that I had no intention of buying yet another bamboo fly rod. Despite having the opportunity to cast several fine rods from various rod builders, I did not weaken. There is no new slender silver tube residing in the rod rack built for me by Tom Brown.  Read more

A Bamboo ferrule?

The annual gathering of the world’s bamboo rod makers has come and gone. In my last column, I wrote that I had no intention of buying yet another bamboo fly rod. Despite having the opportunity to cast several fine rods from various rod builders, I did not weaken. There is no new slender silver tube residing in the rod rack built for me by Tom Brown.  Read more

The social network

As some of you may know, the past few weeks (maybe even months) have been a journey... traveling down the long and winding road of life-altering changes, paying attention to the passage of time, sometimes glancing back from whence I came, while considering what lays ahead, all the while attempting to be in the moment. Sighing, more than breathing, has been the norm as of late, but like a good ice cream cone, sighing comes in all flavors and I’ve sampled several over the last week.  Read more

Thu., Nov. 13 Popular Google Apps
Thu., Nov. 13 Fall Foliage Mixer
Sat., Nov. 15 Fall square dance
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