Service dogs and farmers' markets

What's going on in your community, August 11-17

Posted 12/31/69

ATI service dog is veteran’s best friend

MONTICELLO, NY — When Eduardo Avila was wounded by an IED during his last combat tour in Iraq, he sustained permanent injuries which affected …

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Service dogs and farmers' markets

What's going on in your community, August 11-17


ATI service dog is veteran’s best friend

MONTICELLO, NY — When Eduardo Avila was wounded by an IED during his last combat tour in Iraq, he sustained permanent injuries which affected his life both physically and cognitively.
He researched information about service dogs, and found out that the wait period for most agencies was three to four years. And some demanded on-site training.
Then at a local street fair, he found Action Toward Independence (ATI) and the federally funded Wounded Warrior Service Dog Program (WWSDP). And now, ATI announced that its WWSDP grant application has been awarded $100,000 for July 2022 through June 2023.
ATI is an independent living center, which has served individuals with disabilities for over 30 years. Included in its partner organizations are those in the veteran community, including Vet 2 Vet, Veteran Coalitions, Begin Again Transition Services and others.
The prime objective of the WWSDP is to support service members and veterans with disabilities by funding nonprofit organizations that are committed to advancing the service dog industry. Service dogs are provided at no cost to disabled service members and veterans. ATI has particularly focused on veterans and service members diagnosed with PTSD, and has been running this program for over five years.
The WWSDP as practiced by ATI strives to work with local animal shelters, believing that the dog and the handler rescue each other. The dog doesn’t have to be a specific breed.
Training can be done at ATI’s office, at the handler’s home or out in the community. And there is continuous follow-up.
The new grant will let ATI provide 25 service dogs for 25 eligible service members and/or veterans.
As Avila—now ATI’s most recent WWSDP graduate—said, “The skills acquired from ATI and their support have allowed me to train and bond with Raider and she has become a member of her new human family while learning how to become my service dog… She has grown to be a window for my family to interpret my feelings, as well as a mirror for me to better understand myself.”
For more information about ATI and its services, call 845/794-4228, or visit

Celebrating farmers’ markets

LIBERTY, NY — The Sullivan Catskills Farmers’ Markets collective is celebrating National Farmers’ Market Week, August 7-13.
The markets have special activities or events scheduled, like a book signing, live music and cooking demos.
This year, the collective is launching its new website to kick off the week,
The site is a new resource to learn more about each farmers’ market, its location, the farmers themselves, recipes, tips for shopping at the market and how to use different currencies and benefits at the market.
“Farmers markets are inclusive and welcoming, and it starts with the friendly farmers. Ninety-two percent of shoppers enjoy meeting farmers. To them, that connection adds even more value to their purchase,” said Melinda Meddaugh, agriculture and Food Systems Issue Leader of Cornell Cooperative Extension Sullivan County.
“When the Sullivan Catskills farmers’ markets say ‘everybody’, they mean it,” Meddaugh said. “Those who receive SNAP, WIC, senior and veteran benefits all are incentivized to shop local at the markets.”
Farmers Market Week is the perfect opportunity for anyone who has yet to visit a local market to experience today’s farmers market, according to a press release. “It’s fun, socially fulfilling and a great way for the entire family to eat healthier and support our neighbors—hard-working Catskills farmers.”
Special events are planned:
Barryville Farmers’ Market—Saturday, August 12, the market will feature live music.
Kauneonga Lake Farmers’ Market—Saturday, August 13, there will be a cooking demo.
Livingston Manor Farmers’ Market—Sunday, August 14, there will be a special makers day at the market.
Mamakating Farmers’ Market—Friday, August 12, there will be live music at the market.
Rock Hill Farmers’ Market—Saturday August 13, a booking and signing will be held with photographer Marisa Scheinfeld, plus live music.
Sullivan Fresh Monticello Farmers’ Market—Thursday, August 11, there will be a cooking demo and scavenger hunt for kids.
For more information and locations for the Sullivan Catskills farmers’ markets, visit or

Health Centers Week held in Wayne County

HONESDALE, PA — Wayne Memorial Community Health Centers (WMCHC) has been recognized and commended by the Wayne County commissioners.
The week of August 7 through 13 has been declared National Health Center Week in the county.
WMCHC representatives were at a recent commissioners’ meeting in Honesdale.
WMCHC began in “2007 with two facilities and 23 employees. Today we have 19 facilities and 370 employees,” said finance director Bob Fortuner.
The health centers provide primary care, dental services, women’s healthcare, pediatric services, urgent care and behavioral health. Surgical and neurological services are also available.
“I’m exceptionally enthused about healthcare here with Wayne Memorial,” said Brian Smith, chairman of the commissioners. “It’s a big part of our economy and security.”
Community Health Centers were launched in 1965 to help increase access to primary care for vulnerable populations by reducing barriers such as cost, lack of insurance, distance, and language. They receive funding from the Health Resources and Services Administration to help them fulfill their mission.
Today, there are 1,400 health centers in the U.S., providing care to more than 28 million people.

Vendors wanted for September festival

HURLEYVILLE, NY — The Fallsburg Fall Festival, a family-friendly event with games, music, a scavenger hunt and more, will be held Saturday, September 17 at Morningside Park.
The rain date is Sunday, September 18.
The event is hosted by the Kiwanis of Woodridge, and is accepting applications for vendors. Sellers of food, crafts, antiques, toys, clothing, games and so on are welcome.
The cost for a non-food space of 10 feet by 10 feet is $15. For a 15-foot-by-15-foot food space, the cost is $20. The space for a food truck costs $30.
Call Diane at 845/866-3204, or email her at; or call Jill at 845/798-6058, or email for an application and further information.

August and September events from Hadassah

MONTICELLO, NY — The Hadassah Catskill Mountain chapter continues to sponsor events throughout the summer. Most take place at Temple Sholom and are open to the public.
On August 3, the chapter arranged for a tour of the Bethel Woods museum. Reports Bonnie Mitzner, co-president of Hadassah Catskill Mountain, “The docent we had was amazing. He was so knowledgeable and gave us insights as to the climate in the country at that time.
“Politically, the country was in a tumultuous time. The ongoing Vietnam War was at its height and being seen every night in the news. Young people attending colleges were exchanging ideas with their peers. The world was changing and a festival advocating love, peace and music was the balm that was needed.”
Bonnie noted, “Getting the festival off the ground was a feat in and of itself. It was originally set to be held in Ulster County, then moved to Walkill in Orange County. With three weeks till the start, it was moved to Yasgur Farm in Sullivan County, where it was too late to change the name of the festival. Ultimately, over 500,000 were in attendance and, despite the rain and lack of food and sanitation, history was made, which has never been repeated.”
On Monday, August 29 at 11 a.m., Shain Fishman will conduct a chair yoga class.
On Wednesday, September 21 at 7 p.m., Donna and Rick Nestler, a two-piece musical band, will offer a concert of good-time music—jug band, folk, Americana and original tunes.
Refreshments will be served at all events, and proof of vaccination is required.
For admission prices and to reserve a place, call Lauren Miller at 914/799-1424, or email You can also email Bonnie Mitzner at, or call her at 845/807-7247.

Novavax available in Honesdale

HONESDALE, PA — Recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for individuals 18 and older, the new COVID vaccine, Novavax, is available at Highland Physicians Family Health Center on Fridays.
Novavax is administered in a two-dose series, three weeks apart. It is not an mRNA vaccine like Pfizer or Moderna; Novavax is a “protein subunit” vaccine made from moths and tree bark.
According to the CDC, Novavax includes harmless pieces of the virus—the spike proteins—that cause COVID-19.
After vaccination, the body creates an immune response to these protein pieces, and that response helps protect you from getting sick with COVID-19 in the future.
Protein subunit vaccines are already used for other diseases, such as hepatitis B.
Novavax does not contain eggs, preservatives, latex or metals. It was approved for emergency use by the Food and Drug Administration and was recommended in July by the CDC. It has been in widespread use in other countries since last year.
To make an appointment, call Highland Physicians at 570/251-6500, or schedule online under the Schedule a COVID Vaccine heading at
Wayne Memorial Community Health Centers is a federally qualified health center. It offers healthcare services in four counties. It is clinically affiliated with Wayne Memorial Hospital.

Bialecki Farms to host farm tour

THOMPSON, PA — The Wayne/Pike Farm Bureau will hold a farm tour from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursday, August 18 at Bialecki Farms in northern Wayne County.
Stan and Amy Bialecki have combined traditional growing methods with modern, hydroponic growing to provide fresh, local vegetables for the community. Their lettuce varieties in particular are clean and free from insects as a result of their hydroponic growing methods, a press release noted.
The Bialeckis maintain a farm stand on their property and attend multiple farmers’ markets each week.
The public is invited to attend. A bagged lunch will be provided at no charge.
The farm is located at 3299 Wrighter Lake Rd.
Reservations are requested, and can be made by calling Joyce Carson at 570/226-3864 by Saturday, August 13.

Sullivan Sheriff’s Office graduates new deputies

MIDDLETOWN, NY — On Friday July 29, seven new recruits in the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office Patrol Division graduated from the Orange County Police Chiefs’ Academy after six months of training.
The graduation ceremony was held at the Paramount Theater in Middletown, NY. The new deputy sheriffs will now begin 10 weeks of field training in Sullivan County.
The new graduates are Zachary Longden, Robert Lyons, Rory Meyer, Shawn Schanil, Andrew Hartman, Scott Erdman and Rachel Bitjeman.

Michael, Allyson Cavage recognized for service

WAYMART, PA — The Wayne County Community Foundation (WCCF) announced that Michael and Allyson Cavage are the Ben Franklin Community Service Award recipients for 2022.
An award ceremony and dinner will be held at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, September 28 at Ladore Lodge, 398 South St.
Each year, the WCCF board of directors selects a person or persons who have demonstrated long-standing and deep-rooted community-mindedness.
The Ben Franklin Community Service Award is distributed from funds established and invested by Benjamin Franklin in 1790, and are meant to better the community. The recipient then donates their award to a nonprofit of their choice.
Michael Cavage was raised in Waymart and attended Western Wayne High School. He worked on his family farm, at J.F. Cavage Construction and more. With the support of his wife Allyson, he founded Pioneer Construction Company Inc. in 1995.
What had started out as a 12-person company has now grown to serve its community with over 200 employees.
Michael Cavage sits on the board of directors for the Honesdale National Bank, is on the finance committee for St. Mary’s Church in Waymart, is owner of Osborne Lawn and Garden, and is a partner in Wayne County Home Meats.
Allyson Cavage was raised in Honesdale and graduated from Honesdale High School. Allyson has worked at Wayne Bank and is currently secretary and treasurer at Pioneer Construction Company.
They have five children: Eric, Mariah, Dustin, Janine and their deceased daughter, Alyssa. They also have many grandchildren.
The Cavages previously ran the diocesan annual appeal for both Wayne and Pike County and currently sit on the advisory board for the annual appeal.
They have supported many organizations and programs in Wayne County, including the Wayne Memorial Hospital, the Wayne County Food Pantry, the Wayne County Public Library, local emergency medical services, fire departments, state and local police departments, 4-H, the Women’s Resource Center and many others.
Purchase tickets on the WCCF site at
For more information, or to order advertising space in this year’s program, contact the WCCF at

Action Toward Independence, farmers' markets, Health Centers, Fallsburg Fall Festival, Hadassah, Novavax, Wayne/Pike Farm Bureau, Sullivan County Sheriff's Office, Wayne County Community Foundation


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