Friday, October 2, 2009

News That Matters - October 2, 2009 - Things To Do Edition

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

Good Friday Morning,

It was 34.3° here this morning and I could hear the jade plant and the orchids shivering outside. There is a call for rain later this afternoon and evening. Tomorrow is supposed to be windy and rainy for most of the day but you should still get outside. Along with the events listed below (and the many that I don't even know about), if the weather does keep you in I still want you to get outside! To help with that, PBS has made their new series by Ken Burns on our National Parks available for free viewing at their website here. Use a fast 'net connect.

Using the economic downturn as an excuse, the NYSDEC is looking for ways to "streamline" the SEQRA process. The state has enjoined the pro-development group, Pattern For Progress, to help create a "working group" to find ways to speed development. Though, they say otherwise.
SEQRA is the strongest tool we have to maintain the integrity of our communities. Many planning and other boards ignore large portions of SEQRA or decide that some of the more egregious development projects won't have a negative impact (plans for the new Senior Center out on Luddingtonville road is one example,) so it's especially important that we not only maintain the integrity of the process but find ways to strengthen it, not weaken it. William Janeway, DEC's Region 3 Director insists SEQRA won't be touched, but only the process. Huh.
Some of the events below come from the excellent calendar maintained by the Hudson River Watershed Alliance of which PlanPutnam is a founding member.


Arts on the Green

Following a day of golf - for those who golf - there will be a an Autumn Reception at the home of Mike and Cynthia Gibbons in Western Kent on Friday, October 2.  Singing and music by Pat Cummings, Michelle LeBlanc, Kate O'Connor Hoekstra, Neil Hickey, Jan Hoekstra, Lora Lee Ecobelli, Tim Pitt, Real Chemistry Quartet, Midhat Serbagi and . . you.  The admission is by a contribution in an amount of your own  choosing.  If you haven't yet said you will join us, please email to sign on.  Full details of the day can be accessed at  As Shakespeare surely said, "we must party together or hang separately."

Opening Ceremonies for Walkway Over the Hudson

(Continuing on Saturday, October 4th. 7 PM - Waryas Park, Poughkeepsie.)

Out of the Shadows - The Grand Illumination of the Walkway Over the Hudson
. The evening's events will include: River of Light Promenade (7:00 pm) 1,000 Points of Light Lantern Release (after promenade) Light Exhibition on the Mid-Hudson Bridge. JJ Harvey Illuminated Fire Boat (all evening) Waryas Park Band Shell from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm featuring the Big Band Sound sponsored by Bridgeway Federal Credit Union and the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce. Fireworks between the Walkway Over the Hudson bridge and Mid-Hudson bridge (approx. 8pm) The best viewing for this event will be Waryas Park in Poughkeepsie and Oakes Road in Highland. More information is here. Parking and shuttle busses available.Saturday:


"More of The Old Put"

10:30 AM - Kent Public Library. Meet local author Joe Schiavone and learn about the New York Central Railroad, now the North County Trailway, at the Kent Public Library on Saturday, October 3, 10:30 a.m. and Monday October 19, 7 p.m. Mr. Schiavone, the author of "The Old Put" and the recently published "More of the Old Put", will present the story of the "Old Put," the nickname for the Putnam Division of the New York Central Railroad that ran through Westchester and Putnam Counties from 1894 to 1951.   See recently discovered, vintage film of old railroad stations and steam locomotives chugging through Putnam and Westchester. The program is free and open to the public.  Registration is recommended but walk-ins are always welcome.  For more information or to register call the Library or register here: October 3 at 10:30 a.m. or October 19 at 7 p.m.

Fall Slabsides Day

Slabsides, West Park. 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 3. Slabsides, John Burroughs' cabin, will be open and interpreters will discuss Burroughs' life at Slabsides and his significance. Talk on Burroughs' journals by Vassar Professor Jeff Walker will be given at 1 p.m. Hiking trails around the site will be open to the public until dusk. Refreshments will be available. Free.

Harvest Festival at Stony Kill Farm

12:00 noon to 5:00 PM - The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s Stony Kill Farm Environmental Education Center will hold its 31st Annual Harvest Festival on Saturday, October 3, from 12:00 noon to 5:00 PM, rain or shine.

DEC staff will be at the festival with activities and information. The Bureau of Recycling will conduct an environmental button-making activity for children and present a new recycling information display. Staff from the Hudson River Estuary Program will lead a Hudson River beachcombing activity, Hudson River Fisheries staff will conduct a fishing clinic, a forester will conduct a tree pruning demonstration, and a forest ranger will show how to prepare a safe campfire and use firefighting equipment. An environmental conservation officer will also be on hand to answer questions. There will also be special appearances by Smokey Bear.

Musical entertainment will be provided by Linda Richards, a Hudson valley folk singer and environmental educator who has performed with Pete Seeger, Arlo Guthrie, and Tom Paxton. Linda’s sound system will be powered by solar panels provided by the Beacon Sloop Club. Hayrides will carry visitors back and forth between the farmstead, which includes an 18th Century Tenant Farmhouse, and the historic Manor House, built in 1842 by one of the oldest Dutch families in the region. AmeriCorps interns from the Student Conservation Association and special guests from the community will lead a variety of activities for children, including a scavenger hunt, a tree ID game, and nature crafts. Shane "Whitefeather" Hobel of Mountain Scout Survival School will demonstrate wilderness and native American skills. Ti Yogi Bowmen will conduct an archery clinic, and the Mid-Hudson Gem and Mineral Society will lead a rock and mineral "dig" for kids. "Common Ground," the Community Supported Agriculture group based at Stony Kill Farm, will provide information about their program, as well as children’s activities. Stony Kill’s barn will be open for guided tours, up close and personal with cattle, chickens, turkeys, sheep, and pigs.

Admission is free. Food and refreshments will be available for sale, including homemade soups and baked goods from the Verplanck Garden Club, hot dogs and hamburgers from the Stony Kill Foundation, and vegetarian chili from Randolph School.

Stony Kill Farm is owned and operated by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, and is located on State Route 9D, two miles north of the Beacon-Newburgh bridge. The Fall Harvest Festival is co-sponsored by Stony Kill Foundation. For more information, call Stony Kill Farm EEC at 845-831-8780, or visit us on the web at

New York-New Jersey Trail Conference Bear Mountain Hike-a-thon

Join the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference on a fundraising hike to protect trails impacted by storm damage, invasive species, erosion, foot traffic from thousands of visitors, and budget cuts every year. Join in and acknowledge the importance of a healthy lifestyle, environmental stewardship, and outdoor recreation in your life by registering for this fun event!  You don’t need to be a member of the Trail Conference to participate. Note, dogs are allowed on Bear Mountain, and therefore can participate with you on leash for this event if the route which you chose allows dogs. Please visit for more information about the event, the hikes, or email Location:  Harriman and Bear Mountain State Parks

Fall Collaborative Art Exhibit

1PM - 4 PM today (and tomorrow). Sponsored by Visual Arts Committee of Arts on the Lake. This exhibit, in which all works were created by two (or more) artists, continues this weekend. The piece that 15 collaborating artists created at the opening last Saturday is now on display. Held at the Lake Carmel Cultural Center.

"Working Class Hero" John Lennon Art & Music

3PM - 5 PM The Howland Cultural Ctr. in Beacon, NY. Curated by Ned Moran owner of Avalon Archives Rock & Roll Museum in Brewster, NY. Ned has invited me to show all 29yrs +1 of my John Lennon Xmas postcards. 29 years of my John Lennon Xmas Cards:

"The Hudson-Fulton Celebration: New York's River Festival of 1909 and the Making of a Metropolis"

5 pm - Foundry School Museum - With Kate Johnson, Curator and Director of Collections for Historic Hudson Valley. Join us for a Quadricentennial lecture with Kate Johnson, curator and author, about the 300th anniversary of Henry Hudson's discovery of the river bearing his name and the centennial of Robert Fulton's first successful run of his steamship up that same waterway. This lecture tells the story of what those two weeks in 1909 meant to four million New Yorkers and one million out-of-town guests, including the celebration planners and the ordinary citizens who witnessed the events. The Putnam County Historical Society & Foundry School Museum is located at 63 Chestnut Street in Cold Spring. Admission is free for members and donors, and $5 for the general public. Space is limited; reservations are strongly suggested. Please call 845-265-4010 or email.


Hike To Fishkill Ridge

10 AM - Up for a challenge?  Jordan Dale, Exec. Director of Surprise Lake Camp in Cold Spring, leads us on this vigorous hike/climb to the Beacon Fire Tower on Fishkill Ridge and the incredible 360 degree views it affords of the Hudson Valley.  Along the way, you'll see and hear about the old Beacon Incline Railway & catch glimpses of the Shawangunk Ridge to the northwest.  Bring a bag lunch.  Meet: 10am Surprise Lake Camp Main Bldg. Duration: 4 hrs. Level: Difficult (not recommended for beginners or hikers with physical limitations) Sponsor, Hudson Highlands Land Trust.

Fall Foliage Hike to Mt. Nimham

10 AM - Meet at Gipsy Trail road DEC parking area for a longer hike. 11 AM - Meet at the end of Nimham Court for a shorter hike. Moderate family hike to Kent's most famous landmark. Contact David Ehnebuske at (845) 878-3592 or by email.

Annual Lake Carmel Tag Sale

11AM - 3PM -At the Lake Carmel Community Center.

Putnam County Farm Tour

11 AM - 4 PM Putnam County Soil & Water Conservation District has partnered with the Putnam County Agriculture and Farmland Protection Board for Putnam County’s 4th Annual Farm & Harvest Tour. Pack a picnic lunch and spend the day in the countryside visiting one of Putnam County’s unique farms, Willow Ridge Farm in Putnam Valley. There will be talks regarding the benefits and struggles of farming today, several demonstrations, activities, animals, farm fresh products, a farmers market, tastings and music. You can also take a pumpkin home just in time for Halloween. Putnam County is one of the best kept secrets in the Hudson Valley with beautiful views of the country side. Purchase some fresh farm products and make a picnic lunch, have a snack or take home and make a harvest dinner or enjoy dinner at one of the fabulous restaurants in the area. This is a rain or shine, any questions please call Lauri Taylor at 845-878-7918.  For more information, please visit: Location: Willow Ridge Farm at 174 Canopus Hollow Road in Putnam Valley

Brewster Founders' Day

10 AM - 4 PM . Along Main Street in Brewster. More info can be found here.

Patterson Community Day

11AM - 6PM - Veteran's Park on Maple Avenue. More information can be found here.

Into the Future:

Friday October 9th

Rain Barrel Workshop

5:00 pm -The Family Partnership Center, Poughkeepsie. Co-hosted by the Fall Kill Watershed Committee and the Casperkill Watershed Alliance. Rain barrels collect rainwater runoff from roofs, which can be used to water your plants or gardens.  They  help save money on water bills, manage stormwater and conserve water supplies. This hands-on workshop will teach you how to build your very own rain barrel from reclaimed 55 gallon drums.  Leave with a rain barrel ready to install at your home. Registration fee is $15 (includes all materials and tools).  To register contact Emily Vail at  Only 25 barrels are available, so register early!

Saturday, October 10th

Internationally-celebrated violinist Eric Grossman

8PM - Violinist Eric Grossman (“Classical Planet”) returns to Arts on the Lake, accompanied by pianist Lida Grossman, in a program that includes Kreisler, Sinding, Paganini, Lopez-Marin, Sarasate and Brahms.
Admission: $12 ($10 AotL members)

Bringing the audience to its feet when he performed last September in Kent as part of Midhat Serbagi's Classical Planet, Grossman with pianist wife Lida are happy to return to an audience that welcomed us so warmly. 

Praised in The New York Times as a brilliant soloist," violinist Eric Grossman in collaborations with Lowell Liebermann to concerto appearances throughout the world, he has been hailed for his flawless technique, superb musicianship and commitment to a wide range of repertoire.  A graduate of Juilliard, where he studied with Dorothy DeLay, Grossman has given highly acclaimed recitals and solo performances with orchestras in the U.S., Europe, Korea, Japan, and Cuba under renowned conductors including Zubin Mehta, Stanislaw Skrowaczewki, and Michael Gielen.

Highlights of Mr. Grosssman's 2008-09 season include return engagements to Cuba were he played the World premiere of the Second Violin Concerto written for him by Jorge Lopez Marin with Cuban National Symphony Orchestra in Havana and the Cuban premiere of the First Violin Concerto by Jorge Lopez Marin dedicated to Eric. This concert in Havana was recorded live and the CD will be released in Cuba in 2009.

Among his acclaimed appearances are his sixth concert tour of Korea where he played Brahms Violin Concerto with the KBS Symphony Orchestra, New York recitals with pianist Gleb Ivanov, his European recital debut at the Arco Festival in France.

Lida Grossman studied piano with her mother, Viera Mancheva, a pianist and musicologist, as soon as she could reach the keys. In 1996 she received a scholarship to study piano at the National University of Costa Rica, under the tutelage of the Russian master Dr. Alexander Skliutovsky. In 1997 the University awarded her the Distinguished Student title. She completed her masters degree in piano and music pedagogy, Summa Cum Laude, at the University in 1999. Mrs. Grossman, has been praised by critics for her "musicianship, lyricism, technique" and "emotional performance". Lida has performed widely throughout United States, Cuba and Costa Rica.

Wednesday, October 14

2009 Southeast Stormwater Conference

8:30 am – 4:00 pm. The 9th Annual Southeast New York Stormwater Conference and Trade Show will provide valuable information on the changes that will be included in the 2010 Phase II Stormwater permit requirements plus offer a wide array of topics, including special improvement districts, good housekeeping skills beyond the DPW, “surviving” the annual MS4 audit, rain gardens, and floodplain management. Code Enforcement Officers who attend the floodplain management session will receive one hour of continuing education credit. The Trade Show will feature products and information from many of the leading stormwater management professionals.  The 2009 Conference is sponsored by the Lower Hudson Coalition of Conservation Districts. The cost is $65 per person before 9/25 and $85 after 9/25 and includes Trade Show, lunch and breaks. For more information please contact Jennifer Lusk at (845) 677-8011 ext. 3 or Registration information, the agenda and vendor information are available at, under Upcoming Events. Location:  Dutchess Manor, Beacon, NY

Friday, October 16th

Road Salt:  Impacts to the Environment and Human Health

9:00 am – 12:00 pm. To promote safe winter driving conditions, deicers are applied to roadways throughout the Northeast. The most commonly used deicer is sodium chloride, otherwise known as road salt. This inexpensive deicer comes with hidden costs to both the environment and human health.  Join the Cary Institute and Cornell Cooperative Extension of Dutchess County for a management-based forum about the impact that road salt has on natural areas, drinking water supplies, and health conditions, and weigh in on a lively discussion about how municipalities can improve policy decisions in the future.  Free and open to the public; reservations are appreciated, but not required.  For more information, contact Claudia Rosen at (845) 677-7600 x171 or Location:  Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies Auditorium, 2801 Sharon Turnpike (Rte. 44) in Millbrook, New York.

Saturday, October 17th

Mini Book Sale

The Friends of the Kent Public Library will be holding a series of mini book sales this fall in the Community Room.  Come and browse a fine selection of bargain priced books! A great way to stock up for holiday gift giving and support the Friends of the Library. Additional days: Saturday, November 21, 10am--2:30pm and Saturday, December 12, 10am--2:30pm.

Putnam County Hazardous Waste Drop Off Day

Need to get rid of that old drain cleaner, old paint thinner or the old chemsitry kit you just found in the attic? This is the day for you. Call the county at (845) 278-6130 to pre-register. The event takes place at the Canpous Beach parking area at Fahnestock State Park from 9AM until 1PM.

If you have electronics that need to be disposed of (computer monitors, etc.,) each town will have a drop-off location today as well. Call your town to find out just where.

Putnam Arts Council Art Show Opening

At Tilly Foster Farms. Opening Reception from 4-6PM. Free!

NY/NJ Trails Conference Annual Meeting

8AM - 3PM - All members of the Trail Conference are invited to attend the Annual Meeting of the Trail Conference on Saturday, October 17 at Lower Twin Lake Camp in Harriman State Park. More information and a complete agenda is here.

Friday, Oct. 23rd

The City, The Country and the Changing Environment

7 p.m. Professor Emeritus of Vassar, Dr. Harvey Flad, and award-winning author Leila Philip, will discuss their recently published books:  Main Street to Mainframes: Landscape and Social Change in Poughkeepsie, and A Family Place: A Hudson Valley Farm, Three Centuries, Five Wars, One Family.Cary Institute auditorium, 2801 Sharon Tpk., Millbrook. Free. 677-7600 x 121 or

Saturday, October 24th

Second Annual Rally

Rally for green jobs with Pete Seeger, Joel Tyner, Pat Lamanna, Mike Ignatowski, Ann Perry, and Jeff Romano on International Day of Climate Action.First gathering at Holy Light Pentecostal Church 33 Clover Street in Poughkeepsie, then walking out on FDR Mid-Hudson Bridge or Walkway Over the Hudson; contact Joel Tyner at 845-489-5479 or for info;

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