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October 23, 2014
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THE CATSKILLS — Martin (Marty) Podskoch is afraid of heights, but that didn’t stop him from writing “Fire Towers of the Catskills: Their History and Lore.” Fascinated with these relics of our past, he visited all of the fire towers in the Catskills region and talked to the fire tower observers and their families. So how does he get to the top of a fire tower? “I just close my eyes and hold on to someone’s shoulders and follow them up,” Podskoch said.

A few weeks back, a neighbor told me he was finding what looked like berries on the ground, even though he said no berry trees were anywhere in the area. I asked him about the size and color, and...

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Fall brings the changing of the foliage to the Upper Delaware Valley. Along with the falling leaves come the “slippery rail” excuse for train delays. It seems, according to New Jersey Transit (NJT...

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Apparently there is no evidence whatsoever that Marie Antoinette actually uttered such a callous statement in response to her subjects’ bemoaning their lack of bread. But it has stuck to her shoe...

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I’m sure you’ve heard of it. Wikipedia defines it as “an old adage, typically stated as: ‘Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.’” Ain’t that the truth. At the risk of sounding like a total nut...

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The great battle of our time will be over water—pure, fresh water in particular. All earthly life depends upon water for survival. The human population worldwide, now 7.3 billion, is projected to...

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The fast-flying days of flaming fall foliage have held us in thrall lately as the Upper Delaware Region advances toward the cold and inward months of winter. Watching the leaves turn through...

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Slipping into darkness

The first day of summer is a joyous time of the year, plans of long days, warm nights, fire flies, reading books in the hammock, building sand castles on the beach. All the plans of summer lie ahead and the excitement that goes with them, waiting to unfold. The commuter, however, as much he or she enjoys the beginning of summer, knows the joy will be short lived. Every day after the longest day of the year we lose eight minutes of sunshine. Every day comes closer to slipping back into the darkness. To the commuter this will mean eight months of dark mornings and even darker trips home.  Read more

Peace, Love & Music

"If someone thinks that peace and love are just a cliche that must have been left behind in the '60s, that's a problem. Peace and love are eternal." — John Lennon
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A purple problem

A few years back, some friends and I went to a seafood restaurant in eastern Long Island for dinner. As we walked through the entrance, I noticed a rectangular planter in which were growing some pretty purple flowers. These flowers caught my eye for a different reason though; they were all of the invasive plant species purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria). Perhaps the owner or an unwitting landscaper saw the pretty flowers along a roadside and decided to transplant them, not knowing the undesirable qualities of this plant.  Read more

Monarch butterfly program with Ed Wesely

LIBERTY, NY — A monarch butterfly program will be held Saturday, August 23 from 10 a.m. to 12 noon. For twenty years, Ed Wesely and Barbara Yeaman rescued monarch butterfly eggs and caterpillars from threatened habitats, reared, and released them. With the help of local school children, they’ve nurtured and that released over 6,000 adult monarchs.  Read more

Dragonfly walk Saturday

LOOKOUT, PA — A walk titled “The Wonderful World Of Dragonflies” will be held on Saturday, August 23 at 10 a.m. at Browning Beaver Meadow Sanctuary. Meet at the Observation Deck parking area. Join David Trently on a search through the fields and around the pond for dragonflies and damselflies. David will point out the differences between these types of insects. You’ll learn how to identify many of them – and maybe even have the opportunity to hold one in your hand. Learn how you can help scientists by photographing individuals as you travel around your favorite places.  Read more

Entertainment abounds at Wally Lake Fest this weekend

HAWLEY, PA — Lake Wallenpaupack, the third largest lake in Pennsylvania, holds its fifth annual Wally Lake Fest this weekend beginning on Friday, August 22 and running through Sunday August 24.  Read more

NACL continues 2014 season with experimental multi-media show

HIGHLAND LAKE, NY — NACL Theatre continues its 14th season of new and innovative performance. An experimental multi-media presentation of Loarca’s Blood Wedding will be held Saturday, August 23 at 7:30 p.m.  Read more

Woody Allen’s ‘Magic in the Moonlight’

CALLICOON, NY — Delaware Valley Arts Alliance and the Callicoon Theater present Woody Allen’s “Magic in the Moonlight” starring Emma Stone and Colin Firth on Friday, August 29 to Thursday, September 4 nightly at 7:30 p.m., with matinees at 2 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.  Read more

Series of outdoor concerts in Jeff

JEFFERSONVILLE, NY — A series of outdoor concerts will be held on Main Street in Jeffersonville. On Friday, August 22 is Made in Motion, Big Sun, plus special guests from 7 to 11 p.m. The rock band includes Johnny Vitulli, Rob Cahill and Noah Barker. Big Sun is the moniker of Brooklyn resident Noah Barker, who fuses elements of pop, electronic, and jazz into song. The concert features visual artist Josh Deitchman.  Read more

Controversial play portrays Steve Jobs

LIVINGSTON MANOR, NY — The Catskill Art Society (CAS) and the Liberty Free Theatre present a staged reading of Mike Daisey’s controversial, electrifying one-act play, “The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs” at the CAS Arts Center, 48 Main St., on Friday, August 22, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are free. Reservations are required. Small donations will be accepted at the door.  Read more

Liberty Free Theatre summer doubleheader: Poetry, jazz and 'Steve Jobs'

PARKSVILLE, NY — The Liberty Free Theatre presents a summer doubleheader of poetry, jazz and Steve Jobs in two different locations. American poet Barry Wallenstein, along with jazz guitarist Steve Carlin and bassist Tony Decicco, will present “An Evening of Poetry and Jazz” on Thursday, August 21 at 7:30 p.m. at the newly-revived Dead End Café, 6 Main St.  Read more

Arlon Bennett house concert

DAMASCUS, PA — RiverFolk Concerts will host the return of Arlon Bennett on Saturday, August 23 at 7:30 p.m., with a 6:30 p.m. pot luck at the home of Frank and Pat Salt in Damascus.

Bennett sings and play guitar to deliver songs that evoke a little Harry Chapin and maybe some vintage James Taylor. He writes songs with an eloquence, honesty, and wry sense of humor. He loves to communicate with music by creating songs from the sounds of life.  Read more

'Watch Your Step’ artwork by Ruth Hardinger and Lucienne Weinberger

LIVINGSTON MANOR, NY — The Catskill Art Society (CAS) will present “Watch Your Step,” an exhibition of artwork by Ruth Hardinger and Lucienne Weinberger at the CAS Arts Center, 48 Main St. There will be an artist talk on Saturday, August 30 at 3 p.m., followed immediately by a free opening reception from 4 to 6 p.m. All are welcome. Light refreshments will be served. The show runs through Sunday, October 5.  Read more

Vermin du jour

It has been a summer of pests.

In June, I inaugurated the season by contracting Lyme disease. I suspect this occurred on a seemingly innocent walk to check out the beaver lodge under construction at a nearby pond. It was my good luck, however, to discover the deer tick rooted in my leg. I yanked it out but not soon enough; I developed the telling “bulls-eye rash” of tick- borne Lyme disease a week later.  Read more

‘The best of times is now’

Those six words inspired legendary composer Jerry Herman to write a song with that theme for his smash-hit musical “La Cage aux Folles,” currently playing at the Forestburgh Playhouse. Based on the 1978 French-Italian film of the same name, “La Cage” began as a stage play, was transformed into a film (remade in English as “The Birdcage,” starring Robin Williams) and back to the stage again as a musical, with music and lyrics written by Herman, and the story penned by Harvey Fierstein.  Read more

Little Sparrow to play at popular BBQ & barn dance event

JEFFERSONVILLE, NY — Back by popular demand, an Old-Fashioned BBQ and Barn Dance will be offered September 6 in celebration of Cornell Cooperative Extension Sullivan County’s (CCESC) 100 year anniversary. The public is invited to attend this special event at Bridle Hill Farm and to support the CCESC Centennial Campaign for an evening of homemade food, starting at 6 p.m., and dancing from 7 to 9 p.m. Live music will be performed by Little Sparrow, a local Americana band.  Read more

Catskills Golden Age revue

HURLEYVILLE, NY — Bethel Theatre Works will present a new “Vaudeville in the Catskills Celebrates the Golden Age” on August 22 and 23 at 7 p.m. and August 24 at 2 p.m. at the Sullivan County Museum. Reminiscent of the 1950’s famous hotel era, the company has gathered an array of talent portraying legendary entertainers like Carmen Miranda, Steve Allen and Rosemary Clooney, as well as actual hotel entertainment staff who have worked in the Catskills resort industry over the years.  Read more

Kaahele and Friends to perform at The Cooperage

HONESDALE, PA — Kaahele and Friends will perform at The Cooperage, 1030 Main St., on Sunday, August 24 at 7 p.m.

Kaahele is the Hawaiian word for “journey” and the professional name of singer/songwriter Kelly Hyde. Kaahele was born and raised in Callicoon, NY. Her affinity for music became apparent at a young age with her pursuit of both guitar and trumpet. As Kaahele grew up, she began to travel widely, eventually making her way to Hawaii.  Read more

Dear Bob

Author’s note: I don’t know if Sullivan County is in the coverage area for Bob Beierly’s publication Our Town, but here on the PA side of the river you can’t swing a cat without hitting one of his stands. A longtime feature of local life in Wayne and Pike counties, this free magazine, combining right-wing politics and sometimes salacious humor, has recently begun expanding its reach into Orange County, parts of New Jersey and other areas.  Read more