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November 27, 2014
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features

Adding the new to the old: How to build an addition on vintage houses

As owners of vintage houses know, each house has its own character, often just waiting to be discovered when a renovation project or home addition is planned, according to nationally known architect Mark Alan Hewitt. Along with Gordon Bock, the former editor of This Old House Journal, he gave a presentation about working on old houses at Lumberland Town Hall in early October to a full house. Their talk was based on a book they have co-authored on the subject, “The Vintage House,” which is full of ideas for sensitive additions and successful upgrades.  Read more

The out back

My 90-something great-grandfather had one in the ‘50s—a little house behind the bare-bones cottage that lacked even running water. It looked like a Tobacco Road shack and smelled to high heaven, but it served its purpose as a no-frills answer to nature’s calls.  Read more

Counting hawks for science and for fun

Fall is the season when flora and fauna prepare for the upcoming winter. Most trees and plants lose their leaves and go into winter dormancy; cold-blooded creatures, such as snakes and frogs, hibernate in various hiding places. For some birds, a long trip is on order. We hear large flocks of migrating geese as they fly high overhead around this time of year. The large number of eagles that overwinter here is a direct result of their migrating from their breeding territories in Canada to our region in order to find unfrozen waterways to fish.  Read more

‘Double double, toil and trouble’

Over the years, witches have gotten a bad rap. For instance, Shakespeare’s infamous hags that appear in “Macbeth” are discovered in a dark cave lit by flickering flames while lightning strikes and thunder booms. “Double, double, toil and trouble,” they chant, while tossing disgusting ingredients into their cauldron to complete the spell… “Eye of newt and toe of frog, wool of bat and toe of dog.” The well-known incantation conjures up images designed to strike fear of the unknown into the hearts of man… and succeeds.  Read more

Fire on the mountain; Fire towers of the Catskills and their vigilant observers

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.  Read more

Tinseltown on the Delaware: Milford welcomes 15th annual Black Bear Film Festival

MILFORD, PA — Milford rolls out the red carpet this Friday evening, as the Black Bear Film Festival (BBFF) kicks off its annual three-day tribute to the art of independent filmmaking. Over the weekend, moviegoers will be able to view more than two dozen feature films, documentaries, shorts and more, many of them award winners.  Read more

Autumn harvest of the Native Americans

As a lifelong lover of pumpkin pie, I was delighted to learn that the main squash of the Lenape was pumpkin. The Lenni Lenape (Delaware) Indians were quite agricultural, with a focus (like many Native gardeners) on the “three sisters:” corn, beans and squash. These three staple crops supported Native American culture over much of the country.  Read more

Wood carvers hone their skills at fall gathering

CHERRY RIDGE TOWNSHIP, PA — Wood carvers from far and wide came to an informal “carve-in” this past weekend at the Cherry Ridge Campsites outside Honesdale. Hosted by the Cherry Ridge Carvers Club, the event drew 150 people, not counting boys from four local Scout troops who came to learn the basics of this underappreciated hobby.  Read more

Have you dreamed of writing a book? Digital age self-publishing can make that pipedream come true

NARROWSBURG, NY — Once upon a time, books were written almost exclusively by a small group of brand-name professional writers, most of whom boasted impressive academic and publishing credentials. But the advent of the digital age has made it possible for a new breed of author, the so-called “independent” writer, to produce a book without the assistance of a traditional corporate publishing house. E-books and print-on-demand production methods have revolutionized what was once an elitist industry.  Read more

Two young survivors

SULLIVAN COUNTY, NY — Two successful businessmen. Two beautiful and loving families. Two young boys with leukemia.

Unhappy story? Not for the Mongiello and Scancarello families—Anthony Scancarello (age 8) and Anthony (“Lilo”) Mongiello (age 5) are leukemia survivors. And that’s not the end of the story either. The boys and their families are working hard to help other leukemia sufferers.  Read more