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August 26, 2016
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Photos by Michael Roberto

CALLICOON, NY — It was first built in 1852, a few years after the first train ran through what was then Callicoon Depot, part of the railroad-related boom that turned a single house into a bustling community. Originally, it was built in the Greek revival style, but sometime around the turn of the 20th century, the roof was raised and two stories and a mansard roof were added to create the iconic structure that dominates Upper Main Street in Callicoon today. For well over 100 years, it was a vibrant part of the hamlet’s commercial life. Then, for some years, it lay dormant.

Actually, it was 47 years ago, and it happened on Max Yasgur’s dairy farm in Bethel, NY. But life on this planet was so different back then, it might as well have been in another galaxy altogether...

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Walk near almost any patch of forest, or even your backyard now, and you will either see or hear one or more chipmunks. As they dart around foraging for seeds or nuts and chattering, and perhaps...

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There was a tradition in many homes growing up, including mine, of setting up the Lionel Trains and tracks in some part of the house for the Christmas holidays. I am sure if my dad had his way...

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Spoiler alert! This one’s a little maudlin. While I did attend an actual fair last week, (

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Many of us were lucky enough to have some early fishing experiences. Yet, as Robert Frost reminded us, “knowing how way leads on to way” we get sidetracked with “little things.” Little things like...

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Were you aware that Pennsylvania has a Wildlife Action Plan that guides how the state strives to conserve its most threatened wildlife species? First published in 2005, the 2015-2025 plan has...

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Happy birthday, NPS, from the Artists’ Market; Photographic tribute to our nation’s parks

SHOHOLA, PA — The National Park Service (NPS) is getting a present from the Barryville Area Arts Association for its 100th birthday: a photographic tribute on exhibit throughout the month of August. There will be an opening reception from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Artists’ Market Community Center. A representative of the National Park Service will make a brief presentation at 4:30 p.m.  Read more

Connecting body and mind: Yoga festival comes to Forestburgh

FORESTBURGH, NY — A place for women to gather to practice the arts of yoga, Pilates and dance under the instruction of specialized teachers is taking place in the woods of Forestburgh from August 25 to 28. The movement festival is called Taru, and it will be a spiritual event that connects participants to body and nature.  Read more

Babes in the woods

While working in the yard earlier this year, I became aware of an unusual and repetitive call emanating from the forested hillside behind our home. Uncertain whether the sound was coming from a bird or animal, I grabbed my camera and went to investigate. Drawing closer to the source, I discovered it was emanating from a football-sized opening in the upper reaches of a very tall oak tree. Soon, a petite furry face emerged, followed by a second masked creature. Baby raccoons!  Read more

‘Faces of India’ at Laundry King

LIVINGSTON MANOR, NY – The Catskill Art Society presents “Faces of India,” an exhibition of photographs by Doug Hilson, at the Laundry King, an alternative exhibit space of the Catskill Art Society located at 65 Main St. There will be an opening reception on Saturday, August 6 from 4 to 7 p.m. Light refreshments will be served. The show runs through August 27.  Read more

‘The Incredible Judy Garland’ in Hancock

HANCOCK, NY — “The Incredible Judy Garland” will be at The Two Sister’s Emporium at 170 East Front St. on August 5 and 6 at 7:30 p.m. Show tickets cost $12, and a cold picnic buffet costs an additional $16.95  Read more

Rescued splendor and a secret garden in Port

PORT JERVIS, NY — The Port Jervis Council for the Arts’ Historical Port Jervis House and Garden Tour will be on Saturday, August 6 from 1 to 4 p.m., rain or shine. Featured homes are the Rauner residence, 222 West Main St., the Jiang residence, 20 Ferguson Ave., the Copa-Riviere residence, 19 Ferguson Ave.; and the Fried-Patterson residence, 249 N. Orange St. In addition to the grounds and gardens that accompany these houses, you can visit the Washburn-Stephens garden at 15 Elmendorf Street.  Read more

Icehouse Arts film camp

SULLIVAN COUNTY, NY — Icehouse Arts its offering its 13th season of youth filmmaking classes with Ron Littke. The one-week Kid Flix (ages 8-12) and Teen Flix (12 and up) classes will be held Monday through Friday at 10 a.m. and 12 noon respectively, and will cost $50 per week. Classes will take place from August 8 through 12 in Eldred at the Sunshine Library and from August 22 through 26 at the library in Narrowsburg. Students will gain experience in scriptwriting, directing, acting for film, camera work and editing as they make an original movie.  Read more

Courage trumps cowardice

Fun and games aside, I have had a ridiculously busy week. While Mom was fond of saying, “You can rest when you’re dead,” I don’t think she believed that I should actually stop and drop while working, so I see a day off in the not-too-distant future. Meanwhile, I was out and about with the Wonder Dog in tow every single day since the last issue of The River Reporter hit the stands and (go ahead, call me a crybaby) I’m tired.  Read more

WCM finale weekend: CAS, The Union, The Cooperage

REGION — The Weekend of Chamber Music (WCM) will conclude its annual festival with three days of events. On Friday, July 29 at 7 p.m. there will be a free open workshop for WCM fellows and artists, with Ensemble Accroche Note of France at the Catskill Art Society (CAS) in Livingston Manor, NY. Also at CAS, on Saturday, July 30 at 8 p.m., there will be a gala concert and reception catered by The Arnold House. Dinner costs $25 and the concert $20.  Read more

Jerry Garcia Symphonic Celebration

BETHEL, NY — The Jerry Garcia Symphonic Celebration, featuring Warren Haynes, will be making a stop at Bethel Woods Center for the Arts on August 6 at 8 p.m. in the Pavillion. The special collaboration will include The Hudson Valley Philharmonic, guitarist Warren Haynes and Jerry Garcia Band vocalist Jacklyn LaBranch. Haynes is one of the leading interpreters of Garcia’s music through his work with Phil Lesh & Friends of The Dead.  Read more

CAS holds pop-up in Hurleyville

HURLEYVILLE, NY — The Catskill Art Society presents “Pop! – Selections from the 2016 CAS Summer Members Show” in a special pop-up exhibition, co-sponsored by The Center for Discovery, at the former Nadia’s Restaurant at 222 Main St. from July 29 through August 14. There will be an artists’ talk and free opening reception on Friday, July 29 from 5 to 8 p.m. Light refreshments will be served.  Read more

Billy Joel backup Preston returns to Harmony

HAWLEY, PA — Wade Preston, Billy Joel’s back-up, returns for two shows in one night at Harmony Presents on Saturday, July 30 in the underground theater of the Hawley Silk Mill.

“It’s not often a man can sit in front of a piano and command full attention. Wade Preston’s dexterity alone is enough to drop a stadium full of jaws, but you don’t need to go to a stadium to experience the awe,” said Jill Carletti, managing director of Harmony Presents.  Read more

Old Time Fair and chicken barbeque

GRAHAMSVILLE, NY — The annual Old Time Fair and chicken barbeque will return to the Grahamsville Fairgrounds on Saturday, July 30, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The barbeque is 2 to 5 p.m. Admission is free with a nominal fee for some games and food.  Read more

Studio Monday displays member works

GRAHAMSVILLE, NY — The Studio Monday Art Group recently held its annual art show in the Daniel Pierce Library . Over 50 works of art, some of which are shown here, were put on display at the opening on July 16, and will remain on display in the lower level of the library throughout the year. Most of the art is available for sale. The Studio Monday group meets Mondays from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the library. Artists working in all mediums are welcome. For more information call 845/985-7233.

‘Artifacts from the Future’

LAKE HUNTINGTON, NY — Julius Valiunas’s new retrospective, “Artifacts from the Future” will be on display at the Nutshell Art Center, 6692 State Rte. 52, from July 30 to September 4. There will be an opening reception on Saturday, July 30 from 5 to 7 p.m.  Read more

Callicoon Country Fair

CALLICOON, NY — The Callicoon Country Fair continues a 30-year tradition of town fairs in Callicoon, but starting last year it expanded in scope, taking place all over town on Upper Main Street, Lower Main Street and in Callicoon Creek Park. Musical and dance performances will be intermingled with more than 60 vendors from throughout the region. Local farms, artisans and craftsmen will display and sell their wares. And of course, our country heritage will be honored.  Read more

Listening to you, I get the music: Forestburgh Playhouse nails ‘Tommy’

“See me, feel me, touch me, heal me.” Those words, penned by Pete Townshend for inclusion in The Who’s iconic rock opera titled “Tommy” have stood the test of time and become part of the lexicon of the ‘60s generation. In the years that followed, Townshend’s lyrics have moved millions as the studio album, first released in 1969, morphed into an extensive tour, which included a live version of the double-album, a Seattle Opera production in 1971, an orchestral version by Lou Reizner in 1972, a film in 1975 and a Broadway musical in 1992.  Read more

In a pickle

Summer is full of conundrums. Pool or lake? Grill or chill? Hike or hammock? Among the biggest is how to eat all the season’s bounty while also saving it for the future. The answer is preserving, of course, and among the easiest methods is pickling.  Read more

Dog days of summer

Man, it’s been hot these days. I mean really hot, maybe even too hot to go swimming in the lake, if I had the time and it weren’t too crowded. Our air conditioning at home crapped out, as it will when you need it, and we were back to using fans. I remember as a kid my bedroom was on the third floor of our Brooklyn home. Mom would bring a bowl of ice in a metal pot and place it in front of my fan. Mentally I thought it was cooling me down, but the reality was, it was too hot for me to care.  Read more

PA rattlesnakes delisted from candidate status

On July 12, during its quarterly business meeting, the PA Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) voted to delist the timber rattlesnake from candidate status. With this vote, this species is no longer a candidate for threatened or endangered status in PA. A news release of the quarterly business meeting by the PFBC can be found at  Read more