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April 02, 2015
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Peter, Peter, pumpkin eater

Eileen Dooley and daughter Ella make the trip from California to the Giant Pumpkin Party in Grahamsville, NY every year.

Not surprisingly, Dharma’s reputation preceded her and even the guys assisting with parking (all the way in Grahamsville!) recognized her instantly, although they had no clue who I was. I sniffed with derision in their general direction, but got over it quickly as I picked out friends and neighbors in the crowd and joined in the merriment, reveling (once again) in all things country life. The dog insisted on seeing the petting zoo and (of course) I acquiesced, while sampling homemade donuts, funnel cake and the requisite pumpkin cider. All in all, it was an incredibly good time. If you’ve never been, mark your Jeff Bank calendar for next year, for it is (IMHO) really worth the trip.

On the way home, we passed the Catskill Harvest Market, (, which I had noted was hosting its annual “Customer Appreciation Day” barbeque and appeared to be in full swing. Showcasing hundreds of pumpkins front and center, the market is described as “a place where farm market meets gourmet grocery,” with an emphasis on local suppliers from the Catskills, the Hudson Valley and Northeast PA. I wheeled around when I (aargh) heard the dog’s name being called and spied friends at a table, with their own canine in tow. We joined them for a burger (thanks, guys) and chewed the fat for a while, admiring the garden center and incredible fall day, before heading off in search of adventure.

It would seem that more pumpkins are in our future, as this weekend approaches. Pumpkin Fest 2013 ( will take place on Saturday, October 12 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and The River Reporter will be on hand with our own festive photo booth, while helping to sponsor Barryville’s brand of pie eating, costume and scarecrow contests. Be sure to stop by, say “hi” to you-know-who and have your snapshot taken for our photo album ( Unlike Peter, Peter, who “had another and didn’t love her,” I adore my pooch (in spite of her burgeoning stardom) and we’re both excited to greet you all at Pumpkin Fest, Now all I have to do (according to the poem) is “learn how to read and spell.” There’s always next week.