Friday, April 24, 2009

News That Matters - April 24, 2009 - Things To Do Edition

News That Matters
Brought to you (Almost Daily) by PlanPutnam.Org

Good Friday Morning,

A little frost on the pumpkin this morning, eh?

Putnam County is finally going to get a hotel but before you invite your uncle Ned up from Tuscaloosa just keep in mind that the hotel is in Putnam but only by about an inch or two. Slated for the old Kelties Bum Steer property on Route 6, the $3 million project - complete with tax breaks - is about to begin.

Tilly Foster Farm opens for the season tomorrow (Saturday) with a host of activities.

A woman in Scarsdale had had enough of her 10 and 12 year old fighting and bickering and did what every parent has threatened to do: "If the two of you don't stop now I'm putting you both out of the car!" They didn't, so she did. Her 12 year old ran after the car and caught up with it while the younger child was left standing on the street until a passerby notified police. Now, half of you will be sympathetic with the mother, half with the children. But whichever side of the coin you fall on, make sure your kids read the article about this before your next road trip!

Assemblyman Greg Ball said the other day... No, I don't want to ruin our day. Forget it.

Verizon Wireless still sucks. I've had a Verizon cell phone since Alex Bell and I used to bar hop together back in the day. They've got a deal that so long as you maintain a contract with them, every two years they credit you $100 towards a new phone. (As an aside, it's interesting how the phone only lasts two years but that's another post for another day.) Anyway, my two years is up and, you guessed it, my phone is starting to fail. So, I log onto the Verizon Wireless website and find out that my credit for the new phone is only $50! What happened? According to the customer service rep, they changed the plan two years back and anyone who re-upped during a narrowly defined window only gets $50. And, if I want the logical upgrade for my current phone I have to change my calling plan - to a more expensive one or, I can get a crappy phone. Have I written before that it's time to nationalize the phone company? Yeah, I think I have.

The case of The Pirate Bay, a music sharing website whose owners have been sent off to prison for, well, music piracy, has a twist. It seems the judge who presided over the case, Tomas Norstrom, is a member of the Swedish Copyright Association and sits on the board of Swedish Association for the Protection of Industrial Property. I'd say there's a conflict there.


Putnam Chorale - Elijah Oratorio (Mendelssohn)

8pm at the First United Methodist Church located on Main Street in Brewster, NY and Sunday, April 26, 2009, 3pm at the Temple Beth Elohim located at 31 Mt. Ebo Road North, Brewster, NY. Mendelssohn’s dramatic music has swept away audiences since its premier in 1846. Experience one of the greatest pieces of music ever written, with its gorgeous lyricism and its thrilling climaxes. The Putnam Chorale invites everyone to join them in the celebration of this piece. Featuring baritone Peter Clark. Admission: $15, Seniors & Students: $12, Children under 12 Free. More info here.


Celebrate Earth Day

8:30AM - Put Plaza, Route 6, Carmel - Lake Carmel residents, The Bereznak Brothers Band ( will be playing under a tent for the start of Putnam's official Earth Day fete. The Carmel Rotary Club is donating the use of the tent. Starbucks will have another tent to hand out free drinks and tasty treats. At 9AM, local politicians will contribute to global warming and at 9:30 volunteers will begin a roadside cleanup of Route 6. Write Walt for more information.

Here's a video of the Bereznak brothers singing, "Car Show".

Work on the Appalachian Trail

9AM - Folk from the RPH Cabin Volunteers are working on a section of the Appalachian trail this morning in an ongoing management and maintenance effort. This stage of the work is to create a flight of rock steps to reduce erosion and impact on the trail. Meet 1 mile north of Route 301 on the AT. Call Tim at 845-297-9573 or visit: for more information.

Swamp Monsters Adventure

10 AM Garrison - Like mud? School-aged kids and their caregivers are invited to spend the morning on this eco-adventure with Environmental Educator Pete Salmansohn and friends. We'll venture into the Garrison School Forest for a hike, and learn about wetlands and who lives in swamps and vernal pools. Bring a snack. Space is limited/registration required.

Three Moments in Time

8 PM - Three Moments in Time - A staged reading by the Blue Horse Repertory Company. Presenting: Slaughter in the Lake by Jose Rivera, Thoughts on the Instant of Greeting a Friend on the Street by Jean-Claude van Itallie and Sharon Thie and A Brief Period of Time by Don Rifkin. At Arts on the Lake, Route 52 Lake Carmel. Admission is $10 (9$ for members) Reservations: (845) 228-2685 or With *Peggity Price, *Brian Keeler, *Lora Lee Ecobelli and *Sean Hopkins. *Appearing through the courtesy of Actor's Equity Association staged reading guidelines.


Hudson River Estuary Trees for Tribs

9:00am - 4:00pm and Sunday, April 26, 2009:  9:00 am. Celebrate National Volunteer Week 2009 and Arbor Day The NYS DEC’s “ Hudson River Estuary Trees for Tribs” initiative will be hosting two volunteer bareroot-seedling “potting events” in celebration of this year’s National Volunteer Week (April 19-25), an event which seeks to honor the individuals who dedicate themselves to taking action and solving problems in their communities, and Arbor Day (April 24).  Arbor Day is a national observance that celebrates the role of trees in our lives and promotes tree planting and care. Our volunteers will help pot-up bareroot seedlings for the “Hudson River Estuary Trees for Tribs” initiative- a program that offers free native plants to landowners who qualify for stream buffer restoration projects.  In just two years, the “Hudson River Estuary Trees for Tribs” initiative has been responsible for planting more than 32,000 feet of stream buffers along the Estuary’s tributaries with 12,000 native trees, shrubs, and grasses.  Over 70 projects have been completed to date with the help of some 1,200 volunteers and 50 project partners.  For further information on “Hudson River Estuary Trees for Tribs”, please visit website: For specific questions regarding this volunteer event please contact Amy Bloomfield, Hudson River Estuary SCA Riparian Buffer Specialist, at and 845-256-3827.

Into the Future:

Tuesday, Apr 28,

A Day in Your Watershed: Bottled Behavior

8:00a.m - 4:00p.m. At Clearpool Education Center, 33 Clearpool Road, Carmel.  The professional development conference features informational speakers, workshops and hands-on activities for school teachers, environmental educators and the general public. $20, includes breakfast and lunch.  Contact Deana Grimaldi,  845-225-8226 ext. 104.

Friday, May 1

May Day Bonfire and celebration

8 pm - At Jeff's House in Kent Cliffs
Come celebrate the traditional first day of summer with a bonfire and party to keep the bad spirits away. Drizzle or shine or dark of night. (Steady rain cancels but I'll still be here so come anyway.)

Historically Walpurgisnacht is derived from various pagan spring customs. Bonfires were built to keep away the dead and chaotic spirits that were said to walk among the living then. This is followed by the return of light and the sun as celebrated during May Day.

The earliest May Day celebrations appeared in pre-Christian Europe, with the festival of Flora the Roman Goddess of flowers, the Walpurgis Night celebrations of the Germanic countries. It is also associated with the Gaelic Beltane.

In Irish mythology, the beginning of the summer season for the Tuatha Dé Danann and the Milesians started at Bealtaine. Great bonfires would mark a time of purification and transition, heralding in the season in the hope of a good harvest later in the year, and were accompanied with ritual acts to protect the people from any harm by Otherworldly spirits, such as the Aos Sí. Like the festival of Samhain, opposite Beltane on October 31 Beltane was also a time when the Otherworld was seen as particularly close at hand.

Standard rules apply: If you're drinking, plan to camp or come with a Mormon who drives.

Saturday, May 2 and Sunday, May 3

Cinderella - The Trashy Musical

An Apple Tree Production - Where Recycling Meets Royalty. In this revision of the story, penned by Kent playright Chris Blossy, music by Lew Zwick, Judy Allen as the Fairy Godmother and with some notable roles reversed, Cinderella and the Prince meet for organic latte's at a recycling center. Okay, I made that up... well, maybe! Saturday at 3PM, Sunday at 2PM at the Cultural Center on Lake Carmel (the old firehouse) Admission $7 adults. $5 Children and Members. Visit Arts on the Lake for more information and to purchase tickets online.

Wednesday, May 13

Getting Your Feet Wet With Social Marketing, with Jack Wilbur

9:00 am - 5:00 pm or Thursday, May 14, 2009:  9:00 am - 5:00 pm For professionals, volunteers and municipal officials involved in:  watershed management, climate change adaptation and mitigation, wildlife management, invasive and nuisance species, forestland management, natural resource management and ecosystem-based management. Each workshop on “Getting Your Feet Wet With Social Marketing”, with Jack Wilbur Utah Dept. of Agriculture, will cover behavior change, assessing audiences and messaging.  Social marketing uses many of the principles of commercial marketing to bring about behavior change. Examples of social marketing campaigns are anti-litter like "Keep America Beautiful", anti-smoking and energy conservation. Jack Wilbur is a social marketing and marketing research specialist, see more info on his work here. (PDF) The early registration fee is $25.  Space is limited.  Brought to you by: NYSDEC Estuary Training Program of the Hudson River National Estuarine Research Reserve, NYSDEC Hudson River Estuary Program, Hudson River Watershed Alliance, Hudson River Sloop Clearwater,  and the New England Interstate Water Pollution Control Commission.  For more information:  Stephanie Stanczak, or 845-889-4745 x 109.  Register online for either event at: May 13:  Plum Point, Kowawese Unique Area at Plum Point  Route 9W, New Windsor, NY  OR May 14:  Norrie Point Environmental Center, Staatsburg, NY:

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