Kids’ Almanac (9/8-15)

Photo of Pavilion at Esopus Meadows Preserve by Robert Rodriguez, Jr.

Photo of Pavilion at Esopus Meadows Preserve by Robert Rodriguez, Jr.

“Start being the person you always wanted to be today and don’t waste your time worrying about tomorrow.”
– Mary Kate McErlean, whose father was killed on 9/11 when she was 8 years old


In My Dreams album

“If you were a fruit, what fruit would you be?” queries local musician and Grammy Award-winning producer Dean Jones in “What Kind of Fruit?” the first track of his new album, In My Dreams (Dean counts Minnewaska blueberries among his favorite fruits). In My Dreams delights for a variety of reasons. “I love songs that are questions,” shares Dean. To me, his songs like “Do You Talk to Yourself?” and “Have You Ever Been Real?” break down a sort of musical fourth wall, implying a special collaboration between musician and listener by singing these questions directly to us.


His fun, clever lyrics stand out in tunes like “Swiss Cheese Angels”: “got holes in their wings/Yeah, they might not fly too good, but they sure can sing,” or just the mention of the Borzoi breed in “In My Dreams I Have a Dog.” The Bali steel pan drum in “Do You Talk to Yourself?” adds a fresh, unique texture to the music, reflecting Dean’s influences growing up, listening to Calypso and Trinidadian steel pan.

“Nighttime” is a gem. Dean flips what can be a rigid and charged zone of darkness for kids and families into real flow with creative, expansive and gentle sounds. Looking for visuals? “I’d Like to Fly like a Bird” and “In My Dreams I Have a Dog” even have their own charming videos, which you can see here: and

In My Dreams is alive and vibrant through its skillful repetition of simple, appealing melodies, like “Oh Little Baby,” that draw us in and stay a while. You can get a copy for your family, and I highly recommend a second one for a gift: Downloads cost $8.99, or get the CD for $11.99 at, where you can also listen to samples. For more information, visit


Asperger’s resources in Ulster County

With schedule and season changes along with the beginning of a new school year, families or young people with Asperger’s may be interested in this resource list for support in Ulster County, compiled by the Mental Health Association in Ulster County. Thanks to Fran Wishnick for sharing this information.

The ARC of Ulster-Greene has a “Guild of Awesomeness” group for individuals with autism spectrum disorders, 14 to 21 years old, with a group for the kids and a group for the parents that meets the fourth Thursday of the month, January through October from 6:30 to 8 p.m.; the next meeting is scheduled for September 22. The intake/admission coordinator is Deborah Seche at (845) 338-1234, extension 729. Arc of Ulster-Greene is located at 471 Albany Avenue in Kingston,

Adults with Asperger’s Syndrome: second and fourth Saturdays of each month, 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. at the Beahive at 314 Wall Street in Kingston. Contact Kate Palmer at or

Adolescents with PDD-NOS, HFA and Asperger’s: fourth Saturday of every month, 3 to 4:30 pm at the Old Dutch Church, 272 Wall Street in Kingston, facilitated by Lindsey Pfundstein; e-mail



Enter the Draken

If the closest you’ve ever been to a Viking is comic character Hagar the Horrible or the Minnesota football team, here’s your big chance to go next-level, because the world’s largest Viking ship built in modern times is coming to Kingston! On Friday, September 9, the 115-foot wooden Norwegian vessel Draken (“Dragon”) Harald Harfagre (name of the king who unified Norway) docks at the Hudson River Maritime Museum (HRMM) until departure on Thursday, September 15. Get to know the great story behind this ship and her voyage directly from the crew, sailing from Norway to Iceland, Greenland, Canada and the US.

The Draken is scheduled for deck tours at HRMM on Friday, September 9 from 12 noon to 7 p.m., Saturday, September 10 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Monday, September 12 from 2 to 6 p.m. at a cost of $10 for adults, $5 for children and free for kids aged 5 and under. The Hudson River Maritime Museum is located at 50 Rondout Landing in Kingston (and remember to check out the other excellent events happening there this weekend in honor of September 11). For more information, call (845) 338-0071 or visit To learn more about the Draken’s history, travels and mission, visit and


“Breaking the Cycle” in Saugerties

How has the growing heroin epidemic impacted your life? Our community? Calling all folks in recovery, their families and friends and any other concerned citizens: You are invited to “Breaking the Cycle of Violence: Overcoming Adversity through Forgiveness.” This presentation takes place this Friday, September 9 at 7 p.m. at the Saugerties High School auditorium. Speakers tell personal stories of life experiences where honest communication and forgiveness helped lead to conflict resolution. This Friday’s panel includes Randi Kelder, sister of Ryan Kelder, who died last year due to a deadly and progressive addiction; J. Christoph Arnold, Bruderhof elder and author of 12 books; Ann Marie D’Aliso, mother to a son who committed suicide; and Charles Williams, raised in an alcoholic household.

This event is free and open to the public. Saugerties High School is located at 310 Washington Avenue Extension in Saugerties. For more information, call (845) 339-6680 or visit


Rosendale Theatre presents Vintage Hitchcock live

Are you a regular listener of audiobooks, or those weekly stories “where all the women are strong, all the men are good-looking and all the children are above-average”? Then you might want to reserve tickets for Vintage Hitchcock at the Rosendale Theatre, a live radio play performed as a 1940s broadcast, complete with live sound effects like you hear on Garrison Keillor’s show. Vintage Hitchcock is a triple feature, including The Lodger, Sabotage and The 39 Steps, as well as vintage commercials.

Performances take place on Friday, September 9 at 8 p.m. and Saturday, September 10 at 2 and 8 p.m. Tickets cost $15, or $12 for Rosendale Theatre members. The Rosendale Theatre is located at 408 Main Street in Rosendale. For tickets or more information, call (845) 658-8989, or visit or


Playback Theatre tackles climate change at Tillson’s Rail Trail Café

Are you passionate about climate change? Or does this issue feel more like a headline, abstract and distant to you? Here’s a chance to connect with this topic in a fresh, personal and interactive way, no matter what your level of interest. On Friday, September 9, check out “Changing Climate Change: Theatre for a Healthy Planet” with improv and music by Hudson River Playback Theatre at the Rail Trail Café.

The way it works, the theater troupe invites audience members’ stories, feelings and vision related to climate change, and the actors somehow tie it all together, bring those elements to life and make it all feel even more relevant and meaningful to the rest of us. I always feel energized and lighter after attending a Playback performance. Admission is free, but a hat will be passed around for donations. Watch the group’s Facebook page for updates, in case of inclement weather.

The Rail Trail Café is located at 310 River Road Extension in Tillson, right beside the parking lot on Stone Mountain Farm. For more information, call (845) 255-7716 or visit or



Music Together visits Staatsburg’s Dinsmore Hose Company

“Hello, I’m Uncle Gerry, so glad to see you!” If you’ve taken Music Together classes with your littles over the years, you probably read that line with the lilting “Hello Song” melody; and if you haven’t had the pleasure of participating in these session before, here’s a terrific way to get a taste of this early childhood music program! This Saturday, September 10 from 10 to 11 a.m., join the “Uncle Gerry” Dignan and teachers from Mid-Hudson Music Together and Catskill Mountain Music Together for a free family concert, raffles and fun at the Dinsmore Hose Company. Music Together songs are full of interactive call-and-response and movement, and this event is perfect for youngsters through the younger elementary ages, or for older kids nostalgic for the MT canon.

The Dinsmore Hose Company is located at 49 Old Post Road in Staatsburg, just down the road from the library. For more information, call (845) 889-4683, e-mail or, or visit or


Final week for “In:Site” art show at Rosendale’s Century House

Last chance to catch “In:Site” at the Century House Historical Society, an art exhibit of sculptures and performances inspired by nature and industry of the area. The show is available to view on weekdays from sunrise to sunset, and the closing date is Saturday, September 10 from 2 to 5 p.m. Your crew may especially enjoy this show because it includes some youth artists such as Lyle Bicking and Jayla Smith, and also because there is a cool cave on the property that you can explore: the Widow Jane Mine. Let me know what you think!

The Century House Historical Society is located at the Snyder Estate at 668 Route 213 in Rosendale. For more information, visit


“After Great Pain: Suicide” at Elting Library in New Paltz

Over the years, helping our kids fix problems can look like kissing boo-boos, filling ice packs, hugging through smiles or tears, encouraging one more attempt, talking it out and a million more ways that say “I see you, I hear you, I love you.” We keep showing up. But sometimes our kids need more – a lot more. Then what? The second leading cause of death for young people from ages 15 to 24 is suicide; how do we fix that? How do we navigate pathways to prevention and support?

Well, here’s one place to begin, just listening to some people who know this world firsthand: “After Great Pain: Suicide,” a program in recognition of World Suicide Prevention Day 2016. “After Great Pain: Suicide” takes place on Saturday, September 10 from 4:30 to 6 p.m. at the Elting Memorial Library, featuring authors Ingrid Blaufarb, Losing Aaron; Phoebe Hoss, All Eyes: A Mother’s Struggle to Save Her Schizophrenic Son; and National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Mid-Hudson program director Tina Lee. You’ll hear personal stories about the impact of a family member’s mental illness on parents and siblings and ways to support a loved one in crisis; but just being there is one more way to be in conversation on this topic. This event is free and open to the public.

The Elting Memorial Library is located at 93 Main Street in New Paltz. For more information, call (845) 255-5030 or visit To learn more about the featured speakers, visit, and To learn more about World Suicide Prevention Day and related resources, visit



Three Creek Week/Ramble ideas

Right now, it’s both Ulster County Creek Week and the Hudson River Valley Ramble, which means: Whatever we want to call it, let’s just get outside and enjoy some of the best land- and waterscape that our area has to offer! Here are a few ideas to get you started. For more information and events related to Ulster County Creek Week or the Hudson River Valley Ramble, visit or

Clearwater Family Day at the Esopus Meadows Preserve (one of my go-to parks because it’s actually on the river) takes place on Saturday, September 10 from 2 to 7 p.m. The festivities include river seining, holding a long, cool net and seeing what you caught; a nature scavenger hunt; live family-friendly music, such as one of my favorite family bands, Ratboy, Jr.; interactive entertainment with the Storycrafters; hands-on creating for all ages with Urth Arts; and kids’ activities from the volunteers at the Clearwater Revival children’s area. Bonus: Tell me one more time how you saw eagles there, and I didn’t.

Admission is free for this season highlight. Bring a chair, a snack and a clear schedule so you can hang out all day. The Esopus Meadows Preserve is located at 257 River Road in Ulster Park. For more information, call (845) 265-8080 or visit

“Migrating Birds” at John Burroughs’ Slabsides takes place on Saturday, September 10 at 10 a.m. with Mark DeDea, a naturalist who transforms simple walks into fascinating strolls, based on the fun, easy, clear, accessible ways in which he explains bird culture, identification and ecosystems. Worried that your questions are too dumb to bring up on a bird walk? No problem; Mark loves questions – even if, hypothetically, it takes you longer than the rest of the group to find a bird with your binoculars and suddenly you’re like “OMG I’m birding!” or, again hypothetically, if you repeat the same question that you asked about a Northern flicker last time. Or perhaps you are an experienced birder who requires a smart and skilled guide to walk with: Mark’s your guy. Plus, the hikes at Slabsides are so enjoyable to explore, and it’s all free!

John Burroughs’ Slabsides is located at 261 Floyd Ackert Road in West Park. For more information, call (845) 384-6556, e-mail or visit

The Catskill Interpretive Center’s History Walk takes place at 10 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday, September 10 and 11 on the Nature/History Trail. Are you looking for information about the early settlers during Colonial times? Here you go! Wish it were an ADA-accessible trail? You’ve got it! Need an excuse to drive past Meredith’s Bread to pick up a gluten-free black & white cookie or three? You’re welcome (415 Route 28, Kingston – get me one, too?).

The Maurice D. Hinchey Catskill Interpretive Center is located at 5096 Route 28 in Mount Tremper. For more information, call (845) 688-3369 or visit and


Accessibility Awareness Day at the Walkway

Have you been watching the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games? I wonder how many of us feel like daily life accessibility is a comparable challenge. When did you encounter your first accessibility issue? Was it a bathroom too tiny to accommodate a parent with a child who requires assistance? Websites that you could not navigate while recovering from carpal tunnel or a broken arm? A struggle pushing a stroller along uneven sidewalks or mounting curbsides? Exhaustion from climbing a flight of stairs while on crutches?

Gabriel McMoreland is a vocal advocate for accessibility and shares this food for thought: “I think a lot of accessibility failures in a streetscape will become obvious when you start looking for them. Pay attention to the sidewalks and think about the actual paths that pedestrians take throughout their day. I like to ask, ‘Was this space built for cars, or for people?’ Then look for the details of how a person would actually move through the space. Details matter. I have a lot of trouble finding unfamiliar bus stops because I can’t read the words on the sign, although I can still see the outlines of all the street signs.”

Would you like to be a force for improving and updating the mindset of accessibility in our community? Join Cerebral Palsy of Ulster County’s Accessibility Awareness Day on the Highland side of the Walkway over the Hudson this Saturday, September 10 from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. The $25 registration fee includes a chance to connect with other accessibility advocates, a tee-shirt, guest speakers, music, a bake sale and a silent auction – all in celebration of access to recreational spaces for everyone! Proceeds benefit Cerebral Palsy’s life-changing services for people with disabilities throughout the Hudson Valley.

Walkway over the Hudson is located at 87 Haviland Road in Highland. For more information, to register your participation or to sponsor, call (845) 336-7235, extension 2197, e-mail or visit



9/11 fireboat, PATH train car on view at Rondout waterfront

Reflecting on ways to honor the 15th anniversary of 9/11 with your family? Consider these thoughtful offerings happening at the Kingston waterfront this weekend. The John J. Harvey fireboat, pulled out of retirement to provide the only water source to help with the Twin Towers fires on 9/11, arrives at the Hudson River Maritime Museum docks this Friday, September 9 and is open for deck tours and free public sails on Saturday and Sunday, September 10 and 11. I suggest reading with your kids beforehand the children’s book, Fireboat: The Heroic Adventures of the John J. Harvey, by Maira Kalman; or get to the 1 p.m. storytimes on Saturday and Sunday to learn more about the history of this special vessel.

The PATH train Car 143, saved from the World Trade Center attack, is on display all day Saturday at the Trolley Museum of New York, with a dedication ceremony on Sunday at 12 noon. A ceremonial Reading of the Roll of fallen emergency responders takes place on Sunday at 3 p.m. Additional information about children’s activities, required advance reservations for the free public sails on the John J. Harvey and a complete schedule of events are listed on the Hudson River Maritime Museum (HRMM) website.

The HRMM is located at 50 Rondout Landing in Kingston,; the address of the Trolley Museum of New York is 89 East Strand Street in Kingston, To learn more about the 9/11 memorial events, call (845) 338-0071 or visit To make a donation to recoup the Trolley Museum’s transportation costs of relocating PATH 143 to Kingston and to support the developing 9/11 exhibit around it, visit


Superhero 5K at Baird State Park in Pleasant Valley raises funds for Sparrow’s Nest

Have you ever felt so weak and nauseous from chemotherapy that you wondered how in the world you would make dinner for your family? It’s Sparrow’s Nest to the rescue! Sparrow’s Nest is a local charity whose mission is to provide weekly meal deliveries to parents with cancer who are undergoing chemotherapy treatments, radiation or surgery and also have children under 18 years old. Since its inception in 2012, Sparrow’s Nest has made a big difference to my own family, as well as to countless others.

And while love and goodwill from Sparrow’s Nest abound, it still takes money to make it all happen. This Sunday, September 11 is Sparrow’s Nest Superhero 5K and Family Run Day at James Baird State Park, honoring superheroes like Spiderman or Wonder Woman, as well as our community’s superheroes in uniform, including first responders, firefighters, law enforcement, EMT and military. Families are invited to wear superhero outfits and attend the 8:45 a.m. superheroes ceremony, then run or walk the timed 5K race at 9 a.m., rain or shine. Family Fun Day takes place until 2 p.m.; activities include live music, performances by the Hudson River Performing Arts Center, a bouncy house and more.

Advance race registration fees cost $5 for children aged 12 and under, $20 for children aged 13 to 17 years, $35 for adults aged 18 and over and $25 for first responders and 2016 Team Sparrow; or pay $5 more per runner on race day. James Baird State Park is located at 14 Maintenance Lane in Pleasant Valley. For more information about the event, the organization, to register, to be a vendor or to make a tax deductible donation, call (845) 204-9421 or visit



Bollywood Dance Workshop at Mountain Laurel School in New Paltz

Did you love the 2008 movie Slumdog Millionaire’s spirited theme song “Jai Ho” so much that you blasted it around the house and started incorporating Bollywood dance workouts into your exercise routine, or was that just me? Well, gather up your Ghunghroo ankle bells and head over to the Mountain Laurel Waldorf School’s Community Room this Monday, September 12 for a Bollywood Dance Workshop for the whole family with Bharat Verma. Bharat appears as the special guest of the Vanaver Caravan and is a choreographer from Udaipur, India. His company, Heartbeators, teaches and performs Bollywood, Rajasthani folk, salsa, hip-hop, contemporary and other styles of dance.

The session for ages 8 to teens takes place from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., and the session for teens and adults runs from 6:40 to 7:40 p.m. The cost is $15 per person. The Mountain Laurel Waldorf School is located at 16 South Chestnut Street in New Paltz. For more information or to register, call (845) 256-9300, e-mail or visit


Erica Chase-Salerno is beyond grateful to and the Omega Institute ( for this week’s incredible Metastatic Breast Cancer Retreat. She can be reached at

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