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John and Judy Pavese, one-time owners of the Narrowsburg Inn, donated logs that were assembled into a raft on the morning of August 17, 1976 by several Narrowsburg residents: Jay Laria, Tom Wolfe, Ron Scheuren, Ed Hermann and Arthur Nicols. That afternoon, they launched the raft from the New York boat access in Narrowsburg, NY to the music of a band called Rainstorms. Around 300 townsfolk cheered them off.
A sign celebrating the bicentennial anniversary of the United States was given to the rafters by Freddie Tegeler, but the sign was ditched after it kept catching the wind and made steering difficult.
After rafting for 14 miles, they spent the night at Lander’s campgrounds in Minisink, then continued to New Hope, NY before landing at Waterloo Street. There they were advised by the chief of the fire department that there had been five drownings that week and the water level was so low the raft would likely break apart if they continued downriver, so the trip ended there.
From the collection of the Tusten Historical Society. The Tusten Historical Society’s hours at the Western Sullivan Public Library, Tusten-Cochecton Branch in Narrowsburg, are Mondays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Fridays from 6 to 8 p.m. and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.