Upcoming Events in Shandaken

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Ukrainian Art Exhibit

The Ukrainian Art Exhibit in Jewett Center opens on Sunday, 5 July 2015, at approximately 1:00 p.m.

The exhibit, located in the Parish Hall (or "Grazhda") at the St. John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Church on route 23A (five miles west of Hunter). It's open during July and August every Friday, from 12:00 noon to 2:00 p.m.; Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.; and Sundays from 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

The best time to visit is when the Sunday Buffet is open during July and August every Sunday after Mass, up until 2:00 p.m. Divine Liturgy begins at 10:00 a.m. Click here to view the works featured in 2014.

Red Cross Shelter Fundamentals Training in Phoenicia this Saturday

Red Cross Shelter Fundamentals Training

Learn how to support your community in times of disaster


Saturday February 28th, 10am-1pm

St Francis de Sales Parish Hall (across the street from the church)

109 Main St, Phoenicia, NY

This 3 hour course is designed to provide you with the necessary training to open, set up, operate, and close a Red Cross shelter during a disaster. In times of disaster, community collaboration is essential and this is a wonderful way to give back to our community. Become part of a team of caring volunteers who will provide a safe and secure environment for affected individuals during natural disasters, which have become more and more frequent as the climate continues to change.

The training is free and open to the public, but RSVP is required. A minimum of 8 registrants is required or the training will be cancelled.

Register below or by email to [email protected] or by calling 845-481-0331.  Read more

New York Invasive Species Awareness Week

The mission of New York Invasive Species Awareness Week is to promote knowledge and understanding of invasive species to h elp stop their spread by engaging citizens in a wide range of activities across the state and encouraging them to take action. Please join in the fun and help out with the effort!  Activities of all kinds take place July 6th- July 12th. Check out and click on the logo for more information!

Shandaken Community Gardens (SCG) plots available now for 2014


Juliet Greenwood, Membership Coordinator 845-202-1117

[email protected]

Shandaken Community Gardens volunteer steering committee and members spent the 2013 season building a 26-plot garden from the ground up, growing a bountiful harvest, enjoying and donating that harvest, hosting arts and gardening events, and preparing the way for future seasons.  Now is the time for you to get involved and claim one of the beautifully prepared plots for your 2014 garden!  Read more

Shandaken Community Gardens Seeks Gardeners

Would you like to grow your own food, flowers and herbs?

Cultivate community?

Share knowledge about sustainable gardening?

Collaborate in the creation of an exciting, new project?  Read more

Obituary: Leila Ruth Ellison, Phoenicia centenarian

The following is a reader-submitted obituary.

Leila Ruth Ellison,100, in recent years a resident of Phoenicia, NY, died Monday, December 24, 2012, at Northern Dutchess Residential Care Facility (Thompson House), in Rhinebeck, NY.

Born in Perth Amboy, NJ, she was the daughter of Theodore and Leila Jones Degenring. She was a graduate of Beaver College, Jenkintown, PA, and Newark State Teacher’s College, and for many years was an elementary school teacher in Elizabeth, NJ and Summit, NJ. She was married in 1936 to Harry C. Ellison, Jr., an engineer, who predeceased her. She was an avid reader, and enjoyed playing the piano and travel. For many years, she directed a children’s choir at the First Presbyterian Church in Elizabeth, NJ.

She is survived by her daughter, Patricia L. Ellison, Esq., of Phoenicia, NY, as well as cousins in New Jersey, Georgia, and Florida.

A memorial service will be held at Evergreen Cemetery, Hillside, NJ, at a date to be announced. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Heart Association.

Simpson-Gaus Funeral Home, 411 Albany Ave. is in charge of arrangements  Read more

Lonnie Gale: "The single most accurate historical reference of the Catskills"

The following is a user-submitted obituary.

Alonzo " Lonnie " Gale of Waterwork Road died Wednesday October 10, 2012 at the Benedictine Hospital. Lonnie, as he was known to all, was born in Tannersville on January 22, 1927 son of the late Lemuel Chichester Gale and Hazel Wright Gale. He was a graduate of Hunter-Tannersville H.S., and he then joined the Merchant Marines, where he was stationed in Alaska. In 1945 he was aboard the Sueja III (Q137US), a supply ship in World War II. Upon returning home, Lonnie married Peggy ( Ruth ) Every and they raised their family in Phoenicia.  Read more

Shandaken Democrats Annual Thai Feast

Sat. Sept 29th, 6:30PM 

The Arts Upstairs, 60 Main Street, Phoenicia

Only $10 with reservation.  Our entree offerings will include many  favorites from the past as well as some exciting new Thai dishes that include vegetarian and vegan options.  Thai iced tea, beer and wine will be among the available beverages.
We are keeping the price down because we want a great turnout, and we want to make sure that there's plenty of food for everyone, so we are requesting you RSVP your reservation to receive this $10 offer.  Please email [email protected] with the number of guests in your party, and please advise us of any changes prior to the event.  Guests without reservations will be asked for $15 at the door. 
We hope to hear from you soon, and look forward to an evening of great food, fun and comradery.


Better with Trout

Once again, leaping trout are on display throughout the community of Woodstock, Olive and Shandaken! Get a map at local businesses or online and follow the Art Trail. The Leaping Trout Art Project is a community art initiative sponsored by The Ashokan-Pepacton Watershed Chapter of Trout Unlimited to raise awareness of the importance or our coldwater resources. This year, the project involves 35 artists. More information and to bid on a trout, including the one above, visit

Ninth Annual SHANDAKEN DAY in Pine Hill

Shandaken Day is a free annual event for the family providing Live Music, Arts and Crafts Booths, Kids Games and great Catskill Mountain Fare. This year's event is being hosted by the Hamlet of Pine Hill on Main Street from 10am until 6pm. This year's event, aside from the usual celebration of all the organizations that make Shandaken a great place to live, work and visit, will be higlighting the recent designation of the Hamlet of Pine Hill as a State Historic Site. There is a kids day-long scavenger hunt where they can hunt for several unique buildings and historic features of the Hamlet.

A "Let's Move" ZUMBA dance will take place for all ages from 11am until 2pm at the Pine Hill Community Center.

Live Music to be performed by the Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice, Ben Rounds Band and Earl Pardini and the Slide Mountain String Band.  Read more

Phoenicia Young Writers' Creative Writing Contest

Phoenicia Library's first-ever creative writing contest for young writers! Open to ages 5-24. Click here ( to receive an entry form to submit your writing! Contest closes July 27th at 5pm.

Rita Schwab at the Shandaken Art Studio Tour 2012

Rita Schwab will open her Irene ravaged art studio in Mt. Tremper for the upcoming tour on July 21-22. A heroic effort! Just off the intersection of Rte 28 and Rte 212.   Also- tune in to The Roundtable on WAMC July 19 at 11:30 AM. Tour organizers Judith Singer and Dave Channon will do an interview on The Shandaken Art Studio Tour.

Chichester Yoga is headed to Rwanda!

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At the end of the month, I'll be heading to Rwanda to lead a yoga teacher training at The Ubushobozi Project.  In the evenings, I'll be teaching the National Rwandan Cycling Team. When I leave, if all goes well, the girls will take over my job and be the first local teachers to the team.

This trip is possible because my students donated the money for me to go. Without this incredible community this training would not be happening. So thank you so much for all of your generosity!

When I return I'll be offering the same training here in Chichester. If you want to go deeper into your practice or you want to learn how to teach, email me as we still have room. I also have one partial scholarship available if you are local and one barter available for someone who is tech and marketing savy.  I look forward to serving the community when I return!  And if you would like to donate, it's not too late.  Donations can made on Paypal (Chichester Yoga at yahoo) or via mail.  PO Box 126 Chichester, NY 12416.

Morton Memorial Library Book Club

Good communication is as stimulating as black coffee, and just as hard to sleep after. --Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Come join the book club at the Morton Memorial Library in Pine Hill!

Our next discussion is on November 30th at 6:30pm. We will be talking about the first part of J.R. Moehringer's "The Tender Bar."

Please call 845-254-4222 or email us at [email protected] with any questions!


You can also find us on Facebook

Holiday Book Sale

                                                         Holiday Book Sale!

"The instruction we find in books is like fire. We fetch it from our neighbors, kindle it at home, communicate it to others and it becomes the property of all." Voltaire

Come down to the Morton Memorial Library in Pine Hill and find a great book to treasure for yourself or give to someone you love.

Non fiction, fiction, childrens and some movies

Great prices and all proceeds go to buying new books.

We are open Tuesday through Friday 2-6 

                         Saturday 10-2



[email protected]  Read more

Morton Memorial Library New Hours

Morton Memorial Library in Pine Hill NY would like to announce our new hours effective November 1st 2011. The new hours will be: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday 2-6. Saturday 10-2.

'Like' us on Facebook- Just search Morton Memorial Library

Come join our book group! We will select our next book this Wednesday (October 26th) call or email for details.

845-254-4222 or [email protected]

FREE Hurricane Irene Holistic Outreach Clinic

The Hurricane Irene Holistic Outreach Clinic will take place for the next 2 Sundays (9/26 and 10/2) from 3-6 pm at Parish Hall in Phoenicia. There is no fee for treatments. No appointments required.   There will be a mix of different practitioners each Sunday including but not limited to massage, chiropractic, acupuncture, homeopathy, EFT, reiki, matrix energetics, Shambala energy healing, and more.

Thank you Shandaken, from Douglas Cordo

Douglas Anthony Cordo, the father of Private First Class Douglas Cordo, a soldier who was killed in Afghanistan last week, called us today. After reading about the decision to dedicate Shandaken Day to the legacy of his son, he wanted to share his gratitude with the town of Shandaken. Here's his message:

"I would just like to say thank you to Mr. Rob Stanley and all the people of Shandaken for the support. My son would be proud that they have done so. I'd like to thank them from my whole family. Little Doug was a great kid. He was my hero."

Thanksgiving in the Catskills

Photo by icoNYca, via Flickr. 

As the fourth Thursday in November rolls around, we gather in a spirit of gratitude for our mountain peaks and sparkling creeks, our deer and raptors and black bear, and for each other. Here are some places to feast among neighbors in the Catskills this Thanksgiving Day. Unless otherwise specified, all events are taking place on Thursday, Nov. 26.


The Interfaith Council is inviting everyone in the greater Margaretville community to its 5th annual free Thanksgiving dinner, taking place from 12 p.m. until 2 p.m. at the Margaretville United Methodist Church. All are welcome and take-outs are available.  Read more

Mama's Boy Market, a pioneer of Phoenicia's boom, closes

Above: Mama's Boy Market in Phoenicia. Photo via the Mama's Boy Facebook page

Mama's Boy Market, the funky little coffeeshop in the heart of the Ulster County hamlet of Phoenicia, will close on Monday, Nov. 30, according to owner Michael Koegel. 

"We lost our lease," Koegel wrote in an email on Wednesday, Nov. 25. He elaborated in a post he published on Tuesday, Nov. 24 on the Mama's Boy Market Facebook page:

It is with great sadness that I have to announce that Mama’s Boy Coffee Shop will be closing permanently on November 30th. Unfortunately, we lost our lease at our Phoenicia location and so our last day of serving the community will be this Monday.  Read more

This weekend: Hudson Valley Hullabaloo plus four other Catskills craft fairs

Above: The 2014 Hudson Valley Hullabaloo. Photo via the HV Hullabaloo's Facebook page

The holiday craft season is heating up. This weekend, 65 vendors will flock to the Hudson Valley Hullabaloo in Kingston, and more will appear at markets and bazaars in three other counties. Here's where to shop local for the holidays during the weekend of Nov. 21 and 22.


Fresh-baked pies, locally-raised meats, Catskills-made spirits and wines and much more will be for sale at the Greater Stamford Area Chamber of Commerce (GSACC) Holiday Pop-Up Farmers’ Market from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 21 in Stamford. The market has become an annual tradition, and over a dozen vendors will be there to provide a shopping bonanza just before Thanksgiving.   Read more

This weekend: Where to buy Catskills-made gifts

Above: "Stuyvesant Square Park," a photograph by Tom Sardo, one of many artists featured in Salon 2015 and Handmade Holidays, an arts and crafts sale run by the Greene County Council on the Arts, opening this weekend.

Makers, crafters and artisans across the region are gathering at holiday bazaars throughout the Catskills, showcasing locally-made crafts, fine arts and food products that all make great gifts. Here's where to shop local for the holidays during the weekend of Nov. 14 and 15.


Belleayre Mountain gets $1 million for new emergency center

Above: New York State Senator James Seward presents plans for a new medical facility to be built at Belleayre Mountain with a $1 million dollar grant. Photo by Rebecca Andre.

Belleayre Mountain Ski Center will receive $1 million dollars to construct a new emergency medical facility on the ski mountain, New York State Senator James Seward announced on Monday, Nov. 9.

At a press conference held at the state-owned ski resort in the Ulster County hamlet of Highmount, Seward unveiled plans for the new facility before a group of local officials and interested residents gathered at the mountain’s Overlook Lodge.

Seward was joined by Ted Blazer, the president and CEO of the New York State Olympic Regional Development Authority (ORDA), which operates the ski mountain, and Joe Kelly, who serves as the second vice chair of ORDA’s board of directors.

Above: Senator James Seward and ORDA Second Vice-Chair Joe Kelly. Photo by Rebecca Andre. 

In his remarks, Seward said that the ski center plays an important and evolving role in the economy of the Catskills.  Read more

New book describes the "color, charm and lunacy" of the Catskills

Above: The Flager in South Fallsburg in the 1950s Catskills. Image from 1950s Unlimited via Flickr.

To the wider world, the Catskills mean just one thing: The Borscht Belt, with its famous Jewish resorts that inspired the movie “Dirty Dancing.”

But Grossinger’s, Kutsher’s and the Concord only take up about two-and-a-half chapters of “The Catskills: Its History and How it Changed America,” a new book released by Knopf on Oct. 27.

That surprised even its author, veteran entertainment journalist and writer Stephen Silverman.

Left: Stephen Silverman. Photo via the Catskill Mountain Foundation.

Telling the story of the Catskills required five years of research and 450 pages. It’s the longest book Silverman had ever written.

“This is 150,000 words,” Silverman said. “You’re talking to somebody who is used to writing 200 words for People Magazine.”

By heft alone, it’s a coffee-table book—a big, glossy hardcover brick stuffed with four centuries of Catskills lore.

It's lavishly illustrated and intended for a mainstream audience that is once again rediscovering the region. (As the book shows, the Catskills have been discovered and re-discovered roughly every 50 years since the 17th century.) 

There’s the well-known history, like the story of how Jennie Grossinger created a world-famous Jewish resort out of her family’s Sullivan County boardinghouse. There are quick biographical sketches of the lives of must-mention 19th-century celebrities Jay Gould and John Burroughs. And there’s a snappy account of how Washington Irving wrote the legend of Rip Van Winkle.

But the best parts mine a rich vein of more obscure Catskills stories.

Promenading tourists find a gangster stabbed to death and strapped to a slot machine floating in Sullivan County’s Swan Lake in 1937.

Father Divine, the charismatic leader of the integrated Universal Peace Mission Movement, brings thousands of followers Ulster County in the 1930s.

Mark Carr, an enterprising farmer, invents the idea of commercial Christmas tree sales in America.

At Casa Susanna, a 1950s retreat in Jewett, a small colony of cross-dressers learn how to apply makeup and walk properly in a pair of pumps. 

“Illegal liquor. Religious cults. Gangsters. Left-wing children being raised on communist work songs," Silverman said. "You had restricted hotels that had signs that read, “No dogs and no Jews,” and then you had Jews. Murders took place. Religious salvation took place. There was the bluestone mining and leather tanning. It was a lively place.”

  Read more

Catskills election night reporting 2015

The polls are closed across the Catskills, and we're following the returns as they come in using our Storify widget, below.

You can stalk your own results right along with us. Raw election results are being posted on the board of election websites for Delaware CountyGreene CountySchoharie CountySullivan County and Ulster County.  Read more

Phoenicia's KeyBank celebrates reopening with gifts to community

Above: KeyBank officials Charles Larsen and Jacquelyn Kahrs present a $2,000 check to Phoenicia Fire Chief Gary Carr. Photos contributed by Robin Kirk.

The staff of the KeyBank building that was gutted by fire in the Ulster County hamlet of Phoenicia on February 16 thanked the firefighters who worked through the icy night to save the structure with a $2,000 check at a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Wednesday, Oct. 28.

The bank, which reopened for business last month after extensive repairs, also presented a $500 check to the Phoenicia Business Association.

Above: Larsen and Kahrs present a check to Robin Kirk and David Pillard of the Phoenicia Business Association.   Read more

How to spend Halloween in the Catskills

Above: One of the many creepy scenes at Night Terrors Haunted Farm in Schoharie. 

Halloween is this Saturday, Oct. 31, and the Catskills are celebrating with costume bashes, trick-or-treat events, zombies, witches and more. Here’s our five county guide to the best spooky events of the weekend.


In Andes, the annual Harvest Moon Ball is a Halloween tradition featuring a potluck, costume-contest and kid-friendly dance party that takes over the back room of the Andes Hotel every year. Saturday, Oct. 31 at 7 p.m.

O’Neill’s Shire Pub in Delhi is hosting its Spook-Tacular Halloween Party on Saturday, Oct. 31, from 9 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. They’ll have DJ Pat hosting a costume contest with prizes for scariest, sexiest, best Couple, and funniest costumes.  Read more

Cuomo mounts a motorcycle to announce $5 million Catskills tourism campaign

Above: Gov. Andrew Cuomo riding a motorcycle through the Catskills. Photo via the governor's press office, via Flickr.

Riding on a motorcycle in a leather jacket through the peak of the Catskills fall colors, Gov. Andrew Cuomo led a procession of bikers around the Ashokan Reservoir to a private luncheon at the Catskill Interpretive Center in the Ulster County hamlet of Mount Tremper on Friday, Oct. 23. 

Earlier today, Cuomo announced that he was launching a $5 million I LOVE NY marketing plan for the Catskills region, a 2016 "Catskills Challenge" and a "Ride the Catskills" tourism website.

The new website, which contains motorcycling and biking itineraries for Catskills visitors, is a sub-section of the New York Department of Environmental Conservation's website.  Read more

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