Friday, June 26, 2009

News That Matters - June 26, 2009 - Things To Do Edition

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

Good Friday Morning,

We had our first day of summer weather yesterday and though it's more like we're living in the Adirondacks than the Hudson Valley, all I can say is that I hope summer last a little longer than usual to make up for the late start.

The NY State Senate failed to take any action on property tax relief this year even though there were dozens of bills in front of them that might have offered *something*. Among them was an Omnibus bill, a collection of other bills that would have included circuit breaker legislation (similar to what Sandy Galef proposed). Even though those bills were only hesitant, politically easy baby-steps to an actual solution, the shifting of education funding from property taxes to a progressive, graduated income tax, would have been nice. The average NY property owner would have seen an actual, real, reduction in their overall property tax bills.
Regular readers will be familiar with my constant calls of support of Kevin Cahill's "Equality in Education Act" and wonder why the solution is not 'on the table' in Albany. It's easy: Sheldon Silver. Oh, and the super-rich who would actually have to start paying a fairer share of their income in taxes and who control state government through their financial largess. Any questions?
Remember the 13 year old girl who was strip-searched at her school on a tip that she was hiding drugs? The Supreme Court ruled the other day that the search was illegal. The Washington Post wrote: "In a case that had drawn attention from educators, parents and civil libertarians across the country, the court ruled 8 to 1 that such an intrusive search without the threat of a clear danger to other students violated the Constitution's protections against unreasonable search or seizure." The suspected drugs? Ibuprofen.

Southeast Supervisor Michael Rights is in the news again. This time it's for allegedly causing an accident in which is his car was not directly involved. The point here is that community outrage has already begun yet, there are few facts on the case and people with preconceived notions aren't even bothering to wait before spouting off about this and that. Are their lives so empty this is what they do for recreation? Chill.
While we're talking about Southeast's town government, just keep in mind that it's a result of what happens when a handful of vocal naysayers, people who only seek the worst in others, for whom politics means digging into people's closets, get control of things. As election season approaches keep an ear out for those type of folk. You'll hear them, alright. They're the ones who become morally outraged at others but for whom life would be empty if they couldn't target someone to make themselves feel better about themselves. It's a shame we've allowed those people to control the discussion and the failure of government to effectively govern is the result.
The Country Store at Boni-Bel Farm, a Green Chimneys vocational education program. Is open Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Visit them at 301 Doansburg Road in Brewster, NY for high quality organic foods, handcrafted gift items and more! “The Country Store and Vocational Learning Center is dedicated to building a greater sense of community through its seasonal offerings of organic and fresh produce, cut flowers, and handicrafts — all raised, grown or manufactured by children and staff of Green Chimneys and or local community artisans and farms,” says Kim Pratt Lawrence, director of public programs. “The store will give students an opportunity to learn about working in a retail setting while fostering interaction with the community.  The Country Store will offer a full calendar of events and activities, bringing neighbors together and highlighting the rich diversity of talents that our children and the organizations in the area have to offer.”

Looking for a hike this weekend? Take a walk around the Wiccopee Reservoir on Wiccopee Road in Putnam Valley (about a mile west of the Taconic State Parkway. The Wiccopee Reservoir holds water for the City of Peekskill, releasing it into the Hollow Brook as it flows on its way to that city on the Hudson. This 500 acre property, backed by the scouting reservation and Fhanestock State Park, offers an easy 3 mile loop hike (on a serviceable road) around the lower reservoir and a walk along a beautiful portion of the upper. It takes you across the top of one, and then along the base of the other dam. Using this facility as access you can cross into Fhanestock State Park and hike the easements at the boy scout camp. In other words, it's easy to alter this 3-mile loop into as many miles as you'd like. Boats are forbidden in the reservoir. Maps and photos are at PlanPutnam's Outdoor Recreation pages.


Leo Burmester Retrospective

7PM – 10 p.m. – Cultural Center on Lake Carmel. Opening Reception – “We are such stuff as dreams are made” Retrospective continues with 8 p.m. Kent resident Leo Burmester, who died in June 2007, was an accomplished actor who appeared in 37 films, made 32 television appearances and had roles in 9 Broadway plays.  He was nominated for a Tony as Best Actor in Robert Altman's production of playwright Frank South's "Rattlesnake in a Cooler", which opened at the St. Clement's Theatre in 1981. Burmester won the New York Fanny award for Best Supporting Actor for his Lincoln Center performance in "Ah, Wilderness!"

The retrospective highlights Leo Burmester's work as a collage artist and will include a showing of his unusually large and thought-provoking collages. Burmester began making his collages while working in a shed outside his Kent home in the 1980's. His pieces were often made on plywood bases and contained glass, seeds, trinkets, cloth, sting, beads and an assortment of other knickknacks, and his pieces evoke the adage, "one man's trash is another man's treasure." Burmester and his art were featured in the May 2007 issue of Hudson Valley Magazine.

Burmester's art work is featured in "Leo Burmester and The Literature of Junk" which won best documentary at the Westchester Film Festival and will be shown during the Retrospective.


Wild Edibles Walk

9:30AM -Noon.  Mohonk Preserve. Explore wild plants at the Mohonk Preserve. Learn to identify plants that can be used for food and medicine. Registration through the Mohonk Preserve. 845-255-0919. Led by Aleese Cody, LMT, NCTMB.  email: Cost: Free to members. Non-members must buy a day pass.

Hike to Anthony's Nose

10 AM - U-Bend parking area Route 202 and 6 one mile south of the Bear Mt. Bridge. Anthony's Nose - It should be a beautiful morning to join Geof Connor of the New York-New Jersey Trails Conference for a 2.5 mile return trek up to Anthony's Nose.  At approximately 900 feet, its summit offers sweeping views of the Hudson River, where one of the liberty chains stretched during the Revolutionary War and the Bear Mountain Bridge stands today.  Meet: 10:00am U-bend parking area, Route 202 & 6, one mile south of Bear Mt. Bridge Duration: 2.5 hrs. Level: Moderate/Difficult (500 ft. climb) Sponsored by the Hudson Highlands Land Trust

Rattlesnake in a Cooler

8 p.m. performance by Daniel Burmester (GUTworks Theatre) of Rattlesnake in a Cooler, reproducing Leo Burmester's landmark, Tony nominated performance from 1982. At the Cultural Center on lake Carmel (the old firehouse on Route 52 just south of the 311 causeway)

GUTWorks newest performance follows the story of a man finding the dark side of his dreams. Daniel Burmester, Jonathan Maloney and Kali Quinn will be collaborating once again to bring the gut-wrenching, play Rattlesnake in a Cooler to life. Distinguished playwright Frank South has been known to create folksy, Middle American characters and then squeeze them until they start to spurt blood. Daniel Burmester will portray Souths character of the young doctor in this one-man powerhouse play that will grab hold of the audience and leave all wondering if they have a dark side of there own.

Songs for the River

8PM - Mills-Norrie State Park, Staatsburgh. With Betty And The Baby Boomers. Announcing their latest CD "Where the Heron Waits". Sponsored by the DEC Hudson River Research Reserve, Margaret Lewis State Park (Norrie Point Environmental Center), Staatsburg. Free. Wheelchair accessible (845)300-0010.


Maps and Dreams

5:30 PM - Paramount Theater, Peekskill. "Maps & Dreams" is a unique, one-hour, one-man show that launches off from Samuel de Champlain's dream of amity, and his mapmaking activity, to inspire the audience to do their own 400th anniversary dreaming and mapping. Starting from a consideration of Champlain and Hudson's experiences on their journeys in 1609, the performance ranges over the last 400 years of history in the two valleys, contemplating the changing nature of both, mapping and dreaming, and the unchanging nature of what both activities can help us discover our individual, regional, and national destiny. Presented by Dr. Kevin Dann, an author, musician and professor of history at SUNY Plattsburgh beloved by his students for his dramatic, humor-filled and heart-centered approach to the sacred art of learning, this educational and entertaining presentation will offer stories, music, slide show images, audience participation, and most importantly, the gift of wonderment. Admission is free.

Into the Future:

Monday, June 29

Garden Forum at Millbrook

7PM - 9 PM Farm and Home Center, Millbrook, NY. The Gathering of Gardeners. The first hour will be a tour of the gardens followed by questions for the Master Gardeners. Sponsored by Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess County. Farm & Home Center 2715 Rt. 44, Millbrook. Contact Nancy, 845-677-8223 x115 Cost: $5.

Saturday, July 11

Jeff's Annual Picnic and Garden Party at the Asylum - Everyone is Invited!

3PM - Onwards. Come celebrate the beauty of the highlands in western Kent. Rain or Shine! Bring some food for the pot luck and drink for the coolers, a blanket and/or some chairs, or just wear light, comfortable clothes and hang out on the grass in the field. We'll have plates and forks and knives and spoons and cups so you can leave those at home.

Don't forget your sunscreen. There's afternoon shade near the edge of the forest so you can set up over there if you like. Last year the kids had a massive water fight to stay cool. No adults were harmed in the battle.

When the sun goes down the fire-pit becomes the place for gathering and we'll be sure to have it blazing once it's dark enough for the after-party which ran until 6AM last year.

The weather report projects 80º and partly sunny so we'll have lots of ice and cool, non-alcoholic, non-caffeinated beverages on hand. What you could do:

Bring along some friends, the extended family, the neighbors, your kids, the dogs... pretty much anything and anyone that walks or rolls.

Bring your musical instruments, your talents and yes, even your accordions and kazoos. But be prepared to play them.

If you're traveling from away or taste testing the barleycorn, bring your tent. There's plenty of room to camp.

Handicap parking is available!

More info is here.

Sunday, July 12

Putnam County Humane Society

Treat your dog to a day of pampering! Complete Spa treatment: Shampoo, Nail Trim, Micro Chipping @$35.00 Shampoo Only: $10 Large Dog   $8 Small Dog    Nail Clipping: $7   Micro Chip: $25 Sunday, July 12th (rain date July 26th) from 11:00am to 4:00pm at Putnam Humane Society Shelter, Old Rte. 6, Carmel, NY Proceeds to benefit our canine and feline residents!!

Thursday, July 23

Hudson River Watershed Alliance

10AM - 3PM At this meeting, we will learn about the current activities of each watershed group and what new issues you are facing in your efforts.  In addition, we will collectively chart a course for organizing quarterly or semi annual watershed roundtable meetings. The goal of this meeting is to find new ways in which you can learn from one another and move your local watershed
efforts forward! In preparation, please consider these questions and be prepared to discuss your related activities:

1.  Since our last meeting (July 2008), what aspect of watershed planning protection has your group focused on?

2.  What challenges have you faced and how has your group addressed these issues?

3.   Is their mutual consent to commit to more frequent roundtable meetings?  If so, how should we structure these events?
Please RSVP by Thursday, July 16, to or 845-486-1556.

Sign up to have
News That Matters
Delivered to your email inbox!


Copyright © 2009 News That Matters