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October 21, 2016
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REGION — Apple picking: the quintessential fall activity. But if you look forward to apple season, you may be disappointed this fall, as there aren’t that many apples this year. Last year’s harvest yielded a large quantity of apples, but this year it’s a different story. There are a few reasons for this.

How many times have you gone on a bird walk and happened across an otter, bear, or other animal that was not on the day’s agenda of expected wildlife to see. You might be in a bird blind and all...

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When I went to college—oh so long ago—I recall waiting for the moment when the daily mail would be delivered. I could hear shuffling feet behind the wall of metal post-office style boxes in the...

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Well, that was certainly fun while it lasted, wasn’t it?

I mean that whole “democracy” thing—you know, that illusion that we nurtured for so long, that notion that “We the People” actually...

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Nostalgia reigned supreme last week as I wended my way throughout the Upper Delaware River region in search of spots to photograph the ever-changing array of color that has enveloped the Catskills...

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In my last column, “On Water,” I wrote about the organizations that serve as water guardians and advocates. Environmental institutions may have a great mission statement or structure, but they...

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“Myths and misunderstandings abound in nature and can lead to undesirable outcomes.”

I wrote that sentence in a recent River Talk column to bring awareness to the confusion many people have...

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Welcome aboard

“Go West, Young Man!” Well, that is exactly the advice this Brooklyn boy took 12 years ago when I moved west to Glen Spey in Sullivan County to make it my year-round home.

However, there’s another saying with a promise of its own—“There are great riches in the East!” and for the readers of this column, the East is New York City—the Big Apple. Five days a week I arise at the crack of dawn and head east, commuting to my desk in a midtown Manhattan office, across the street from New York’s Penn Station (aka NYPenn).

It’s a full life.  Read more


I just spent the last week away at the Villa Roma. With everything that was going on with my mother, I totally forgot about my timeshare, so we had to use it or lose it. I stayed up till 2 a.m. reading and slept till 11 a.m. It was very relaxing.  Read more

Wetland wildlife watching

If you have visited a lake, swamp or other wetland lately, you have probably heard the arrival of spring in the form of spring peepers, pickerel frogs, or maybe the honking of Canada geese. If you look closer, you might see some painted turtles basking on a log or some red-spotted newts swimming by the shore. Soon, other amphibians such as green frogs and American toads will add to the chorus of wetland habitats.  Read more

Local art finds a new home at the Stray Cat

BETHEL, NY — The Stray Cat Gallery, a new showcase for dozens of local artists, will host a grand opening and artists’ reception on Friday, May 3 from 4 to 7 p.m. Featuring the works of Nancy Wells, Allan Rubin and Candy Spilner, the exhibit will run through May 22. Also debuting will be large-scale installations by Tom Holmes and Daina Shobrys. Ramona Jan will perform at the opening with her handmade marionettes.

The gallery is located just across the street from The Dancing Cat Saloon and Catskill Distilling Co. on Route 17B. Visit www.straycatgallery.com.

Lakeside Players to present ‘Double Occupancy’

HONESDALE, PA — The Lakeside Players’ original comedy “Double Occupancy,” a madcap comedy about two sexy senior citizens, will run on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, May 3, 4 and 5, at Grace Episcopal Church Parish House Hall. Saturday and Sunday performances are at 7:30 p.m. and the Sunday matinee is at 2 p.m.

Written by Lakeside founders Tony Schwartz and Marylou Ambrose, the play premiered at Ehrhardt’s Waterfront in 2011, when it was performed for 18 senior bus groups over three days.  Read more

Singer songwriter returns to the Catskills

LIVINGSTON MANOR, NY — Folk musician and national award-winning songwriter Gina Holsopple will perform a concert on Saturday, May 4 at 7 p.m. at Morgan Outdoors, 46 Main St. After a visit to the area this winter, performing at SUNY Sullivan, Holsopple returns to play at this locally-owned business.  Read more

Tuesday workshop to paint a silk scarf

LIBERTY, NY — A scarf painting workshop will be offered by Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) Sullivan County on Tuesday, May 7 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Gerald J. Skoda Extension Education Center. Each participant will make his or her own hand-painted silk scarf to take home.  Read more

First Sunday artist demonstration

MILFORD, PA — Pike County Arts and Crafts, Inc. (PCAC) is pleased to host artist Janet Campbell for its May First Sunday demonstration on May 5 at 1:30 p.m. at the Milford Borough Hall.

Campbell will demonstrate the watercolor technique of ‘pouring’ watercolors. Instead of using a brush, the colors are mixed with water in containers and poured onto the paper. The white of the paper is saved by masking, therefore planning is involved.  Read more

Choral society to premier works

MILFORD, PA — The Delaware Valley Choral Society will be in concert on May 19 at 4 p.m. at the Delaware Valley High School auditorium in a performance of works by John Rutter. The concert, “All Things Good,” is dedicated to children of the community and will feature the regional premier of Rutter’s “Mass of the Children,” scored for double choir (adult and children) and full symphony orchestra.  Read more

Fisher Film Festival at SUNY

LOCH SHELDRAKE, NY — The sixth annual Fisher Film Festival will be held at SUNY Sullivan in the college’s Seelig Theatre on Saturday, May 4 at 12 noon. It will be held in conjunction with the 22nd Annual Kite Day celebration that will take place on the college’s front green.  Read more

Ellis at The Cooperage

HONESDALE, PA — RiverFolk Concerts will present Ellis on The Cooperage stage on Saturday, May 4 at 8 p.m. After her recent appearance on A Prairie Home Companion, Ellis’ music charted in the Folk Top 100 in iTunes and Folk Top 20 on Amazon.com.  Read more

Catskill Fly Fishing Center goes wild

LIVINGSTON MANOR, NY — In conjunction with the Catskill Fly Fishing Center and Museum, the Audubon and Friends Too art show opens in the new Wulff Gallery on May 4. This year the Sullivan County Audubon Society artists and friends have branched out to include not only local artists but those from around the region.  Read more

Watercolorist shows works at Inn at Starlight Lake

STARLIGHT, PA — The gallery at the Inn at Starlight Lake will feature the watercolors of Merilyn Hillman during the month of May.

The artist’s paintings often feature figures and pets, including cats and dogs. She is a member of the Big D Arts and Crafts League.

The exhibit opens on Friday, May 3 and will also feature works by other league members including oils, watercolors and photography.

Hillman, who now spends most of her time in Roscoe, NY, has been a student of Jack Yelle, a well known Roscoe watercolorist.  Read more

Tusten Theatre Spring Concert Series featuring jazz, blues and pop

NARROWSBURG, NY — Delaware Valley Arts Alliance recently announced the lineup for its Tusten Theatre Spring Series. All concerts are held at the Tusten Theatre at 8 p.m.

The Gypsy Jazz Quintet will perform on Saturday, May 4. They were formed in 2006 as a musical tribute to the 1930’s “hotclub” jazz.

Organized by guitarist/music arranger, John Curtin, band members also include Vice Marrone, guitar; Bob Wilson, bass; Nick Driscoll, clarinet; and Mark Woodyatt, violin. Admission is $22.  Read more

Tickets on sale for bus trip to see “Noah”

NARROWSBURG, NY — St. Paul’s Lutheran Church is sponsoring a trip to see “Noah The Musical” at the Sight & Sound Theatre in Strasburg, PA on Saturday, September 28. The tickets cost $125 for adults, teens (13-18) $95, children (12 and under) $75. The price includes bus transportation, a stop at the Bird in Hand Farmers Market to purchase lunch (or bring your own), 1 p.m. show at the theater and dinner after the show at the Shady Maple Restaurant.  Read more

Lightning in a bottle

It’s almost impossible to think about Sullivan County (www.scva.net) without recalling a little music festival that put the town of Bethel on the map during a rain-soaked three days in 1969. Since then, music lovers have flocked to the region seeking to rekindle memories of that event, or create new ones in honor of it.  Read more

Building a masterpiece; One LEGO at a time

WAYMART, PA — There’s nothing like a kid’s imagination.

Put 41 kids under one roof, ask them to build a house out of LEGOs®, tell them it’s a contest, and you’re sure to get some colorful and creative structures. The young contestants, ranging in age from five to 12 years old, gathered Saturday afternoon for the annual LEGOs competition sponsored by the Wayne County Builders Association (WCBA) at Ladore Camp and Conference Center in Waymart.  Read more

Ah, brief spring!

Maple catkins droop as tender Amelanchier blossoms herald the arrival of shad plowing upstream to deposit their lucre of roe in the riverbank. Everywhere forsythia and daffodils arch their slender necks in a riot of yellow, proclaiming the end of another gray winter. Redbuds will follow magnolias, then dogwood, each one taking its turn in the unfolding until all are green again, the architecture of branches obscured by leaves that sway and float in the breeze of spring, the warm breath of summer.  Read more

A stinky survivor

A sure sign of spring in the Upper Delaware region, particularly near waterways and boggy wetlands, is the green rising of skunk cabbage plants. So named for the repugnant odor of decaying flesh that the plant emits when bruised, this hardy perennial is also commonly referred to as polecat weed and hermit of the bog.  Read more

And now… the answers to Clem’s annual quiz

1. Bobby Thomson almost became the “goat” in the third 1951 playoff game because early in the game with Whitey Lockman on first, Thomson singled to left. He dashed past first without hesitating, only to find that the third base coach had held Lockman at second base. The giants found themselves with two men on second base, killing a giant rally. That was really dumb base running on Thomson’s part.

2. The three umpires pictured on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post, painted by Norman Rockwell, who were contemplating calling a rain delay, were Larry Goetz, Lou Jordan and Beans Reardon.  Read more