Letters to the Editor – 9/22 to 9/28

Drum Boogie Festival Is Booming Success

The 2011 Drum Boogie Festival was a huge success thanks to the wonderful performers, sponsors and volunteers. We were able to give $3000 to Family of Woodstock for the Kathy Janeczek Memorial Fund which will benefit Breast Cancer Treatment in the Hudson Valley as a result of the fundraising effort organized by the Woodstock Chimes Fund which produced the free festival.  Bread Alone, Walters-Storyk Design Group, Precision Flow Technologies, Markertek.com, Woodstock Chimes and Two Boogie Friends were the major sponsors while additional support came from Stewart’s Shops, Steve Weiss Music, First Niagara Bank, the Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley, Ulster Publishing, Herzog’s Home Center, Arthur Anderson, Miller/Howard Investments and many more. Local restaurants and distributors supplied food and beverages for the performers throughout the day. Interage Media Works sponsored the website and provided beautiful graphics for marketing the festival. Family of Woodstock supplied volunteers, SUNY Ulster students and Woodstock Percussion employees served as stage hands and Nancy Donskoj opened her house to the performers and staff. Live Sound, Inc. of Troy provided a brilliant sound to the festival. The president of the Ulster County Chamber of Commerce Ward Todd was the perfect emcee with his mellifluous voice. Many thanks go out to all of these individuals, businesses and groups, without which, great community events like this would not be possible. Cornell Park is an absolute gem of a venue for concerts with its amphitheater like setting, great acoustics, view of the Hudson River and access to wonderful shops and restaurants. I hope the powers to be decide to build a permanent stage to encourage more events. Check out our website for photos and updates of the festival: www.drumboogiefestival.com. We welcome continued financial support to help with the cost of the festival. Thanks again Hudson Valley for your enthusiasm and support. Boogie On!

Garry Kvistad, Drum Boogie Festival



Train For The Farm Olympics

It may have been awhile since your last three legged race or bout of tug of war, but it’s time to dust off the ol’ relay baton and get ready for the first ever Farm Olympics at the first ever Scarecrow Fest on the Zena Cornfield, Saturday, October 1, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Farm Olympics events begin at 1:30 p.m. and also include Speed Scarecrow, Donut Eating, Pumpkin Relay, Scarecrow dress relay, welly wanging and a few others. We made some of them up and imported others, so check our website at ulsterpub.staging.wpenginelandconservancy.org for complete event descriptions. If you’ve known you want to participate since you read this letter’s subject, shoot us an email! If you’re not sure, you can always show up the day of the event. Actually, show up either way! Besides Farm Olympics, we’ll have food, music, food preservation demonstrations, storytelling, crafts and of course a Scarecrow exhibit throughout the day. Celebrate the season on the Zena Cornfield!

Megan Reynolds



RUPCO, The 800 Pound Gorilla

RUPCO showed its true colors at the Planning Board meeting last Thursday night. It spent years with our town hammering out an agreement (the DEIS) about how it promises to proceed and what it will and will not do when clear-cutting and preparing the wetlands for its project.


Then the DEC ruled that it couldn’t use Playhouse Lane until October 1. And it didn’t like that. It wanted to start earlier. It has “investors” to answer to, its attorney told the public Thursday night.

So it just ignored the agreement it had made with our town. Instead of waiting until October 1 it immediately brought its enormous, loaded equipment onto the site through tiny Elwyn Lane and private Elwyn Quarry Road, for weeks — six days a week, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

The equipment tore up the residents’ lawns and made great ruts. The equipment was parked in residents’ driveways. The equipment was allowed to idle for long periods while workmen discussed how to maneuver it onto the tiny roads that it shouldn’t have been on. Trees that did not belong to RUPCO were summarily cut down to make way for the equipment. An historic stone building was damaged.

And this is just the beginning of this project.

A very hardworking and beleaguered Planning Board chairman was implored to revoke RUPCO’s permit in light of all these violations. He was afraid of a lawsuit. RUPCO’s attorney actually giggled when he confirmed that his client would indeed “have to answer to their investors.”

Where does an 800-pound gorilla sleep? Anywhere it wants.

Judith Emilie