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February 27, 2015
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[In our February 12 issue we reprinted a 1978 TRR profile of Bennet Allen. As reported in that article, the Allens and another family, the Aikens, were the first black people to move to Narrowsburg, NY, in 1960. Recently, Tusten historian Grace Johansen met with his son Gerry to learn more.]

Gerry Allen and I met at the library here in Narrowsburg, NY. Our purpose was to learn more about the Allen Farm in later years. Gerry is a tall, pleasant man and we soon found common ground in our experiences as children of resort owners.

Along the river this time of year one can find a myriad of waterfowl; anywhere that has ice-free, flat water, there are likely to be ducks, geese, or gulls trying to find a meal. Having access to...

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It’s not often you’ll hear me approving of news out of Arizona. The state that gave us Evan Meacham and Sheriff Joe Arpaio is not usually thought of as a birthplace for interesting ideas. But they...

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The Boy Scouts of America celebrated their 105th anniversary this past February 8. As an Eagle Scout and the father of an Eagle Scout, I embrace many of the teachings of the Scouts, especially its...

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The potpie, that comforting American classic, dates back to the days of the Roman Empire, when all sorts of meats were tucked under burnished pastry crusts to serve at elaborate banquets. Nowadays...

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I’m sorry. I swore that I would not write another single word about the weather, but it’s all anybody is talking (and posting on social media) about. Well, that and Lady Gaga—and I’m not even sure...

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As a fitting follow-up to my last column about the importance of a child’s early relationship with nature, some exciting opportunities have been announced at Lacawac Sanctuary, a nature preserve,...

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Calling participants for holiday parades

Honesdale Santa Parade
HONESDALE, PA — Participants are wanted for this year’s Santa Parade in Honesdale. The parade is scheduled for Friday, November 25 (rain date Saturday, November 26). Lineup will begin at 5 p.m. in the Top Notch parking area on Fourth Street, and the parade will kick off at 6 p.m. The parade will end in Central Park and be immediately followed by the borough’s traditional tree lighting ceremony.  Read more

Sign up for Thanksgiving feast

CALLICOON, NY — It’s time to sign up for Thanksgiving food boxes. Interfaith Outreach United (IOU) offers the gift of a holiday feast, with turkey and all the fixings, to low-income families living within a 12-mile radius of Callicoon. To receive a food box, a member of the family must register in advance at the Main Street Thrift Shop no later than Saturday, November 19. The Thrift Shop is open every day except Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Each box holds a turkey, stuffing mix, potatoes, vegetables, cranberry sauce and dessert makings.  Read more

Lucy in the sky (with diamonds!)

As I prepare to write this column each week, I struggle with a title, hoping that I might be clever, while telegraphing information regarding what I’ve seen here in the Catskills. Not wishing to be trite (or corny) is often an exercise in futility, since I’ve been both many times. Usually I have a concept in mind but more often than not, it vanishes as I traipse around the countryside in search of adventure.  Read more

My Uncle Rob

My Uncle Rob died of a heart attack last Wednesday night. My phone buzzed early the next morning. It woke me up but I missed it. When I rolled over to check it, I saw an e-mail subject: “condolences.” The phone call had been from my mother.

In the five seconds it took for me to call her back, I braced for bad news. Her voice was crackled when she told me. “Rob died.”

What?

He wasn’t sick. He was 49 and had a heart attack. He didn’t seem unhealthy. It was a total shock to everyone. A hard punch in the gut. Suddenly nothing was important.  Read more

Books bring community stories to life

SULLIVAN COUNTY, NY —Although she never knew the grandparents whose legacy she explores in two self-published books, Louise Elizabeth (Austin) Smith manages to bring alive their story and the communities and time in which it transpired, with the help of many who cherish those towns and memories today.  Read more

We have the power

A few weeks ago on WJFF’s broadcast of “Alternative Radio,” I heard Paul Cienfuegos, a community organizer for over 30 years, deliver a speech he titled “We the People.”  Read more

Not a moment too soon

As of the day of this writing, I have officially joined the ranks of the carless.  Read more

Halloween snow

REGION — River Reporter columnist Jonathan Fox captured these images during the rare October snowstorm last weekend. For more on Fox’s snowy Halloween, see “All dressed up and no place to go.”

Spooky birds

There is likely not a bird more maligned than a vulture. In the movies, especially westerns, they are typically portrayed circling over hapless people stranded in the desert. To look at them invokes comments such as, “What an ugly bird!” Indeed, they are not likely to win any beauty contests in the bird world. In nature however, adaptations usually have a purpose, even the vulture’s seemingly unsightly head.  Read more

Light at The Museum

BETHEL, NY — The Museum at Bethel Woods will present The Pig Light Show, featuring the work of Marc Rubinstein, in the Special Exhibit Gallery from Saturday, November 5 through Saturday, December 31.

Music performances of the ‘60s and ‘70s were sensory experiences to delight both the ears and eyes. The development of psychedelic folk, pop and rock music, along with the altered consciousness of the audience, served as the impetus for development of a light show that could further enhance the performance and its sensory impact while also offering a “performance within a performance.”  Read more

Art reception in Port

PORT JERVIS, NY — The Port Jervis Council for the Arts will hold an Art in Public Spaces opening reception on Saturday, November 12 from 5 to 8 p.m. at The Grill at River Bend, located on the grounds of the Lynx at River Bend Golf Club, 87 Neversink Drive. The event will include live music, an assortment of fabulous foods provided courtesy of The Grill at River Bend and a raffle for a piece of original art by a local artists. The 25 local artists included in the show are Elva Zingaro, Wendell M.  Read more

'Le Grand Voyage’ at Sunday Night Cinema

HONESDALE, PA — The Wayne County Arts Alliance will present “Le Grand Voyage” as the November 6 entry in its Sunday Night Cinema Fall Series, starting at 7 p.m.  Read more

Inspiration in Liberty

LIBERTY, NY— Painter/poet Clyde Washington will give a performance, “The Inspirational Art Show,” at the Days Inn on Sullivan Street on Saturday, November 12 at 2 and 5 p.m.

South Carolina native and long-time Liberty resident Washington presents a unique combination of his surrealistic/primitivistic paintings accompanied by readings of his own poetry. Washington has written a poem that specifically enhances the message of each painting, and he gives a dramatic reading of each poem as he passes in front of the artwork.  Read more

‘Separate, but Equal’ at CAS

LIVINGSTON MANOR, NY — The Catskill Art Society (CAS) will host a film screening and discussion with filmmaker Shawn Wilson of “Separate, but Equal” at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, November 12 at the CAS Arts Center, 48 Main Street. In the feature-length documentary, artist Henry Clay Anderson’s photographs and the stories surrounding them reshape the image of African Americans in Mississippi during legal segregation.  Read more

Laugh Tour returns to Nutshell

LAKE HUNTINGTON, NY — The Laugh Tour will make another visit to the Nutshell Arts Center at 6692 Route 52 on Saturday, November 12. Jessica Kirson will headline and Rich Kamco will emcee. The evening will start with a happy hour at 7 p.m. followed by the show at 8 p.m.

Kirson has appeared on the Tonight Show, MTV and Comedy Central, among other venues. Kiamco has appeared on The Howard Stern Show, Sirius XM, Queer Eye and WE-TV. Special guests will be Frank Liotti of Laughing Skull and Alison Forns, a contributing writer of Saturday Night Live.  Read more

Pure Prairie League at Bethel Woods

BETHEL, NY — The country-rock pioneers Pure Prairie League will take the stage at Bethel Woods Center for the Arts on Friday, November 11, at 8 p.m. The performance is a part of the Fall 2011 Event Gallery Concert Series, which features an eclectic array of artists in an intimate setting.  Read more

‘Journeys’ of the heart

MILFORD, PA — The daughter of a beloved and respected attorney recently returned to Milford to scout potential locations for a movie that will be filmed in the town beginning in fall 2012. The film honors the memory of the father she calls, “the most amazing man I’ve ever known.”  Read more

‘Be Mine Always’ call for submissions

NARROWSBURG, NY — The Alliance Gallery at the Delaware Valley Arts Alliance will host its fourth annual exhibition of poetry, poem objects and photographs with a Valentine’s Day theme. This year, “Be Mine Always” will have a purely romantic focus expressing stages of romance, marriage, new and lasting love.

Poetry selections are curated by Mary Greene of The River Reporter and the Upper Delaware Writers Collective, and the photographs curated by gallery director Rocky Pinciotti. Visit www.artsal liancesite.org or call 845/252-7576.

Poetry submissions  Read more

All dressed up with nowhere to go

I have a few childhood memories of flurries on Halloween, which did not deter us from going door to door. So when the weather report suggested snow over the weekend, I wasn’t overly concerned. Planning to attend parties all over the county, I had prepared several wildly different costumes, in an attempt to avoid derision over repetition.  Read more

Turning 21

Our last child has come of age. With our guidance, and without it, she learned to walk and to read, to cook and sew and ride a bike and drive a car. Singing seemed to be divinely granted. There were piano lessons and Girl Scouts and summer camp and basketball league. She was an easy learner and an eager one. She spurned my attempts to guide her sartorial style, developing her own at 18 months when she insisted on dressing herself—many times a day.  Read more

Wed., Nov. 12 Open mic night at The Cooperage
Thu., Nov. 13 Popular Google Apps
Thu., Nov. 13 Fall Foliage Mixer
Sat., Nov. 15 Fall square dance