Primary elections today

Above: A voting booth in Margaretville in May 2013. Photo by Julia Reischel.

It's an election year, and today is the day to vote in the primaries. 

The biggest race in the primary is on the Democratic ticket, where underdog candidate Zephyr Teachout is challenging New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo. Teachout is attacking Cuomo from the left by comparing his fiscal policies to those of Ronald Reagan.  Cuomo is doing his best to ignore Teachout's campaign entirely. (Literally. During a Labor Day parade in Manhattan, Cuomo managed to ignore Teachout as she stood directly in front of him.

Teachout's running mate, Tim Wu, is running for the Democratic nomination for lieutenant governor against Kathy Hochul, Cuomo's running mate. The race is its own separate primary, and if Wu wins, he could find himself in the odd position of being Cuomo's running mate in the general election.

As for local Catskills races, there are a few worth noting. 

Left: Bryan Babcock. Photo via Babcock's campaign. 

The Delaware County town of Franklin is holding a Republican primary for a town council seat. Bryan Babcock, the owner of Handsome Brook Farm and Bed & Breakfast who is also a professor at Hartwick College, is vying with Lisa Huyck and Donald Smith for one of two seats on the board. Babcock has criticized the town board for not implementing a comprehensive plan for Franklin.

"With several major infrastructure projects on the horizon in Delaware County," Babcock said in a press release. "it is essential that we protect our roads and utilities. To do this we need to be proactive as a Town Board. I feel that my experience as a business leader will help the Board be even more effective for Franklin residents."

In the Ulster county towns of Hardenburgh and Denning, the Sullivan County town of Neversink, and the Delaware County towns of Andes, Bovina, Davenport, Delhi, Hamden and Meredith, there is a Republican primary race for the 101st State Assembly District, which features a contest between Claudia Tenney and Chris Farber.  According to the Daily Star, the outcome of the primary doesn't matter -- both Tenny and Farber will make it to the ballot in November. 

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Route 42 closed again for rock removal

The New York State Department of Transportation has closed Route 42 in Greene County's Halcott Mountain Pass for a few days this week to remove the remains of a rockslide that cut across the road in May.

Beginning today, Monday, September 8, Route 42 in the town of Lexington will be closed from "just south of Beech Ridge Road to a point approximately four miles north of Route 28," according to a DOT press release. Drivers will be re-routed from Route 23A to Route 214 to Route 28.

The road is expected to be closed for the entire week.

Fences to be installed at Kaaterskill Falls

Above: Kaaterskill Falls shot from behind in January 2014 by Dave Hebb, who shared the photo in the Watershed Post Flickr pool.  

After two people fell to their deaths off Kaaterskill Falls in Greene County this summer, the New York State Department of Conservation will install fences and warning signs at the waterfall, according to a letter from DEC chief Joseph Martens obtained by the Daily Freeman

The fences will be constructed in the early fall, a DEC spokesman wrote in an email to the Daily Freeman, and other safety measures will be taken as well:   Read more

Boat the Pepacton in September, earn a badge

Above: A sailboat glides on the surface of the Pepacton Reservoir on May 26, 2012. Photo by Tina Schvejda; posted in the Watershed Post's Flickr group pool.

This summer, the Catskills Outdoor Guide is partnering with the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the Catskill Watershed Corporation to bring you our new Catskill Reservoir Paddler embroidered badge, which you can only earn by paddling a specific reservoir each month.

In September, the spotlight is on the Pepacton Reservoir. Paddle the Pepacton anytime between September 1 and 30, send in your proof, and a Catskill Reservoir Paddler badge will be yours. Click here or scroll down for full redemption instructions. 

The Pepacton reservoir is the workhouse of the Catskill reservoirs, holding more water than any other reservoir in the NYC system. It holds 140 billion gallons, and contributes a quarter of the entire city's water supply.

The 15-mile-long lake is studded with coves and is straddled by the Shavertown bridge, which is a great viewpoint for a photo shoot or an impromptu race. (Real races have been held on the Pepacton: in 2012, it hosted the first leg of the 2012 Adventure Race National Championship.)

The Pepacton has four boat launches spread along its lengthy shoreline. For a detailed map of the Pepacton and its boat launches, click here.

For our five-step guide to boating NYC's Catskills reservoirs, click here. 

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2nd Annual Golf Tournament to benefit Margaretville Hospital and Mountainside Residential Care Center

An especially sincere thank you to the community businesses sponsoring the 2nd Annual Golf Tournament.  The golf tournament serves to benefit Margaretville Hospital and Mountainside Residential Care Center. 

First Place Winners

Tim and Teresa Hynes, David and Bea Hull

Second Place Winners

Tom and Ralph Ackerly, Bill Blish, George Griffin

Longest Drive Women

Margo Pinkos

Longest Drive Men

Tim Hynes

 

This Weekend: 11 Catskills Labor Day events (and fireworks)

Above: A poster for the Windham Chamber Music Festival, just one of the events happening this Labor Day weekend in the Catskills.

Don't look now, but the leaves are already turning in the highest peaks of the Catskills. That and the arrival of Labor Day weekend confirms it: Summer is ending. Go out with a bang -- in some cases, a literal bang, with fireworks -- with these great events from around the region. 

ACROSS THE CATSKILLS: Lighting of the Fire Towers event. It's tonight! Details here

DELAWARE COUNTY

New trails open in Delhi. Saturday, August 30. 2 p.m. Volunteers have been working all summer to create a new set of hiking trails behind Delaware Academy school. Several of the trails are named for characters in the beloved children's novel My Side of the Mountain, which was set in Delhi. Delaware Academy, 2 Sheldon Dr., Delhi.

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Three years since Irene

Above: Bill Lonecke with his wife, Barbara (left), and daughter, Cindy (right), standing where their Maplecrest house used to be. It was washed away during Tropical Storm Irene by the Batavia Kill, which is 50 yards away to the right. Photo by Christopher Auger-Domínguez. Read their story in our Faces of the Flood Project, here. 

If you're anything like us here at the Watershed Post, anniversaries sneak up on you.

Three years ago today, Tropical Storm Irene blasted the Catskills with intense flooding, killing several local people and washing away homes and businesses in towns across our region.   Read more

This Weekend: See the lighting of the fire towers and earn your badge

Above: The lit-up Berry Hill fire tower in Chenango County near Norwich during the 2013 lighting of the fire towers event. (The Berry Hill tower isn't one of the five Catskill fire towers that will earn you a badge, but it sure is pretty.) Photo by Warren Johnsen.

There's no weekend like this weekend to hike up a Catskills fire tower. Not only can you earn one of our coveted Catskill Fire Towers badges if you do (see details here or below), but you'll also get a rare treat: the sight of a fire tower cab glowing from within.

Once a year, the volunteers who maintain the Catskills fire towers hike lights into the cabs at the top of the towers, making them visible for miles around.

The event is meant to commemorate the time when fire towers were staffed by lonely and intrepid fire tower watchers who stood vigil night and day, scanning for signs of fire.

From the event's organizers:   Read more

Early Morning Line up of Carts for Margaretville Health Foundation Golf Tournament

Line up of golf carts early Sunday morning awaiting the participating golf players of the 2nd Annual Golf Tournament sponsored by the Margaretville Health Foundation.  A group of dedicated community members with a passion for golf.  We thank and acknowledge their dedication to improving the quality of health care here in the Catskills. 

Stretch of Route 42 to close Tuesday

A short section of Route 42 in the town of Lexington is scheduled to be closed on Tuesday while a private bridge is installed, according to the New York State Department of Transportation (DOT). 

Route 42 will be closed from Spruceton Road to Beech Ridge Road, from 6 am to 6 pm, on Tuesday, August 26. 

The installation of the private bridge will be done by a 275-ton crane. The work is not being done by the DOT. 

During the closure, truck traffic will be detoured. Instead of using Route 42, trucks can take Route 23A to Route 214 to Route 28. Cars and emergency vehicles can use Beech Ridge Road as a local detour around the closed area. 

If rain delays the work, the closure will be scheduled for Wednesday, August 27. 


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