Margaret "Peggy" O'Connell, den mother of the 1970s Catskills music scene, dies at 82

Above: Peggy O'Connell appeared on the back cover of “Oceans between Us,” a 1978 album by the Allen Harris Band, released by Tappan Zee Records/Columbia Records. Standing left to right are: Kim Wroble (bass) Mike Kimmel (guitar/vocals), Peggy O'Connell (in the middle, in background), Mandy Rosenblatt and far right standing Allen Harris (guitar/vocals). Sitting left to right: Larry Smith (piano/sax), Robert Rosenblatt (aka Blatts) (congas), Christine Cordone (guitar/vocals) and Rob Leon (lead guitar). Photo courtesy of Christine Cordone.

Margaret “Peggy” Grant O'Connell, the owner of the Pine Hill Tavern who was a patron of the 1970s Catskills music scene and a mother to many, died on Thursday, May 12 at HealthAlliance Hospital in Kingston after losing an 11-month battle with breast cancer. She was 82 years old. A celebration of her life is planned for Monday, June 6.

A lover of music, books and her dog Zorro, whose ashes will be buried alongside her, O'Connell dispensed motherly love and presided over a booming local music scene from behind the bar at the Pine Hill Tavern (now Zephyr Restaurant) in the Ulster County hamlet of Pine Hill from 1976 to 1982.

"We used to call her Mother Teresa," said her son, James Michael O'Connell, with whom Peggy lived with in the hamlet of Olivebridge for the last five years of her life.

"Mom was a people person,” he said. “She liked everybody; she never had a bad word to say about anyone."

During the 1970s, in the wake of the 1969 Woodstock Festival, bands performing original tunes flocked to the Catskills, looking for nurturing venues to host them as they honed their skills.

The Pine Hill Tavern, located on the westernmost edge of Ulster County just off Route 28, was often their last stop.

Often known just as "Peggy's Place,” the tavern was not just a bar—it was a home away from home for traveling musicians and others in need.  Read more

Summer on Ice - A Special Offer from Tay Tea!

Lovers Tea and #4 tea filter (makes 1 gallon of iced tea).

Iced, shaken, sweetened, stirred, frozen, cocktails, mocktails...

Serve it any way you like, this summer Tay Tea has the perfect blends for cool pick-me-ups -- Lovers Tea, Kaapstad, Raj Latte, Coffee Lovers Tea, Berber and more!

Special Offer: Now with the purchase of any Classic Tin, get six #4 tea filters free (pictured above). Ideal for making one gallon of iced perfection!

Shop Iced Teas >

Lichee Black Tea (with real lichee fruit).

Kaapstad on ice.

Farmers' Market of the Week: Delhi

The Watershed Agricultural Council and Pure Catskills are featuring a different Catskills farmers' market every week during the 2016 growing season.

This week's market is the Delhi Farmers' Market, located on Court House Square in downtown Delhi.

The Delhi Farmers' Market runs every Wednesday from June through September, from 9 AM - 2 PM. 

Products: The Farmers' Market provides a wonderful opportunity to meet local farmers and producers. Shoppers can expect a wide array of products including fresh local produce, cheese, fresh baked goods, locally raised bedding plants and hanging baskets, locally produced crafts and maple products. Purchasing locally grown produce and products keeps more capital in the community and it is environmentally friendly since it was grown or produced within a drivable distance, reducing the amount of resources required for transport.  Read more

Lovingly Restored Greek Revival

Lovingly restored Greek Revival on a lush landscaped 3 acre lot in the quiet hamlet of Delancey, just minutes from the village of Delhi and only a short 2 1/2 hours drive from NYC. Enjoy views of the picturesque Catskills from the large back patio. French doors lead into the spacious family/kitchen room addition ideally located for entertaining and family gatherings. Newer maple cabinets and quartz countertops make the kitchen with breakfast bar the focal point of this house. Wideplank & oak flooring throughout the house, wainscoting, beveled glass doors, and a clawfoot tub are a few of the features that blend together both old and new and add to the charm and comfort of this home. Well insulated with new replacement windows, a newer furnace and wood burning Vermont Casting stove makes for energy efficient living.

For more information and photos, click here.  Read more


What more could you ask for in a home? Convenient to Oneonta, Walton, I-88 and only 3 hours from NYC. This nearly 3000 sq ft, light filled, inviting home sits on 5 plus acres, which includes access to nearby stream with swimming and fishing. Mountain scenery, sounds of birds and abundant wildlife can be enjoyed from the large wrap around deck and covered porch. Eat-in kitchen includes custom oak cabinets,kitchen isle and slider onto deck for summer entertaining. Front hall entrance has attractive oak stairway leading to 3 large bedrooms, walk-in master bedroom closets, ample additional closet space, renovated bathroom as well as landing with computer area. Large finished basement with areas for pool table, TV viewing and exercising and walk out to backyard. Additional basement space can be used for workshop. This home is well maintained and heats economically with a Russian soapstone woodstove. Located just outside the historic village of Franklin.  Read more

On a Dark Ground: Artists' Reception, Andes Hunting Tavern

June 4, 2016 - 2:00pm

On a Dark Ground

John Hopkins
Jennifer Jefferson

The Hunting Tavern, 288 Main St., Andes

Artists' Reception: Saturday, June 4, 2-5pm

Tay Tea Celebrates Memorial Day Weekend in Delhi!

Tay Tea Owner Nini O. at the new Tay Tea Bar.

After ten years in Andes, we've moved our tea shop & production studio to Delhi and are loving it here! This Saturday, from 5-8 pm, our new town is hosting a big block party called Summer Night in Delhi which will feature many new store openings, tastings and fun activities.

Tay Tea, Stone & Sawyer, and The Stone House will be serving our popular LOVERS TEA COCKTAIL. Tay Tea will be serving the mocktail version all day long! In honor of the event, Lovers Tea will be on sale, online and in the shop!

Lovers Tea
4 oz Classic Tin
Now only $16

Store Hours
Memorial Day Weekend
Sat May 28 - Sun May 29
10 am - 6 pm  Read more

Funk ambassador in the Catskills: Jon Cleary and the Monster Gentlemen

Above: Jon Cleary and the Monster Gentlemen. Photo via the West Kortright Centre.

When Jon Cleary and the Monster Gentlemen return to the West Kortright Center, you won’t be faulted for thinking you’ve been transported to the Big Easy.

“He played here in 2006,” West Kortright director Martha Van Burek said of the crown jewel of her season. “And he brought the house down. He was amazing. Been trying to get him back ever since.”

Appearing with Cleary at the West Kortright Center will be the uber funky rhythm section of drummer A.J. Hall and bassist Cornell C. Williams, aka the Monster Gentlemen. This duo is an integral aspect of Cleary’s recent album “Go Go Juice,” (his eighth), which netted him the 2016 Grammy (his first) for Best Regional Roots Music Album. In addition, OffBeat Magazine named him 2015 Artist of the Year, Songwriter of the Year, Best Keyboardist, and awarded his song “Boneyard” Song of the Year; and he was named New Orleans’s Big Easy Entertainer of the Year.  Read more

Native Americans Talk, May 28

Native Americans Talk to Celebrate DCHA's Opening Day

On Saturday, May 28th, the Delaware County Historical Association (DCHA) in Delhi will celebrate the summer season opening. Visit the 1797 federal-style Frisbee House where eighteenth-century politicians met to form Delaware County. Located on the site of the historic Frisbee farm you can see the original barns, Frisbee family cemetery and outbuildings, as well as numerous nineteenth-century buildings from throughout the county that have been moved to the site. These building include a blacksmith shop, one-room school house, gun shop and tollgate house. The historic buildings are open Tuesday through Sunday 11am to 4pm through Columbus Day.  Read more

Dozens of Memorial Day events kick off summer in the Catskills

Above: An honor guard leads the 2015 Liberty Memorial Day Parade. Photo by John Kocijanski of Catskill Photography, shared in the Watershed Post's Flickr pool.

Memorial Day Weekend 2016 brings a flood of enticing opportunities to come together, celebrate, and get the Catskills summer season started off right. Here’s our five-county guide to what’s happening where from Friday, May 27 to Monday, May 30.


Parades and Ceremonies:


Parade: May 30, 9:30 a.m., Route 30 North

Grand Gorge 

Parade: May 30, 11 a.m., Route 23 West  Read more

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