Kids’ Almanac (September 18-25)

(Photo by Jeff Rozema)

(Photo by Jeff Rozema)

“Summer is already better, but the best is autumn.”
– Valentin, Finnish writer


Free ham radio classes in Goshen

Do you have any current or potential Hams in your family? Ham radio, that is! Perhaps this quick test can help: Has anyone you know ever tried to make a transceiver out of walkie-talkies? Does anyone you know find this joke funny? “Two antennas met on a roof, fell in love and got married. The ceremony wasn’t much, but the reception was excellent.”

The Orange County Amateur Radio Club presents its Ham Classes for the Technician Class FCC License, and there are no age limitations for participants to get their “ticket” (license). The five classes and exam take place at the Emergency Communications Center in Goshen on Saturday mornings from 9 a.m. to 12 noon on the following dates: September 27, October 4, October 11, 18 and 25, and the exam takes place on November 1. The classes are free; the only cost is the license instruction manual for $22.95.


The Emergency Communications Center is located at 110 Wells Farm Road in Goshen. For more information or to register, call (845) 391-3620 or visit Other area ham radio clubs include the Overlook Mountain Amateur Radio Club, which some of you saw at the Hurley Corn Festival: And the QSY Society meets in Fishkill: That’s all for now – or “73,” as they say (a signoff on ham radio)!



Ski swap sales get underway at Potter Brothers

I am delighted to tell you that this season’s annual Potter Brothers swap sales begin this weekend, and they are a terrific way to save money. Even if you don’t ski or snowboard, the sale bins of winter accessories alone make it worth it to stop by.

Years ago, because my family was so new to snow sports, I initially dragged my feet about going to this sale, but my friend Eugenia practically drove me there herself, insisting that I check it out. When I realized        that it was cheaper to buy used gear than to rent the same equipment, I finally “got it” and have gone back ever since! From ski and snowboard boots to poles to hats and gloves to helmets, even new and pre-owned jackets for kids and adults, I save a bundle every time I stop, and I get good help from the staff with my (many) questions.

The swap gets additional pre-owned items all weekend long, so it can be worth a second trip if you don’t find what you’re looking for earlier on. In our area, the Potter Brothers Swap & Sell events take place in Fishkill on Friday, September 19 from 2 to 8 p.m., Saturday, September 20 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday, September 21 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and in Kingston on Friday, September 26 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday, September 27 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday, September 28 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Potter Brothers in Fishkill is located at 1083 Route 9; Potter Brothers in Kingston is located at 57 City View Terrace. For more information call the Fishkill store at (845) 297-2941 or the Kingston store at (845) 338-5119, or visit


Kingston Rotary Fall Family Fun Day

If you’re looking for an all-ages family activity, or you’ve been needing an excuse to check out Kingston Point, then clear your schedule for Saturday, September 20 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. for the Kingston Rotary Fall Family Fun Day. The free event includes Touch-a-Truck, field games and activities, arts and crafts, fishing, music, vendors and more. Chicken barbecue meals are available from 12 noon to 3 p.m. for $12.

Rotary Park at Kingston Point is located at the end of Delaware Avenue in Kingston. For more information, e-mail or visit


Hudson River Valley Ramble highlights, from


Hudson Valley Harvest Festival at Ulster County Fairgrounds

It’s the time of year that you are so busy. Also, fresh local corn is on the way out. Good news: I learned an excellent tip from my husband that can help you to maximize your time in preparing this last corn of the season. Take the corn out of the bag as-is, the way you bought it, husk and all, and just stick it in the microwave for three-and-a-half minutes. Then cut off the widest point of the stem end. Next, holding the silk end, squeeze your ear of corn out of the husk. It slides out right onto the plate, ready to eat: no time-consuming shucking or removing stubborn ribbons of silk fibers. It’s magical!

Speaking of corn, make time this weekend to attend the third annual Hudson Valley Harvest Festival, which takes place on Saturday, September 20 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and on Sunday, September 21 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission costs $5 per day, and ages 5 and under get in free. In addition to a ton of activities in the children’s area all day long on both days, there’s a Touch-a-Truck on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., a huge farmers’ market, live music, vendors and some great contests to enter.

Pickles and Jams takes place on Saturday, September 20, and entries must be received at the Ulster Fairgrounds Youth Building between 10 and 11 a.m. There is a $5 entry fee per person. For more information about Pickles and Jams, contact Janie Greenwald at (845) 340-3990, extension 325, or e-mail

The apple pie contest also takes place on Saturday, September 20, and entries must be received at the Youth Building by 11 a.m. The youth category is for participants ages 16 and younger; the adult category is over age 16. This contest is free to enter.

The cupcake contest takes place on Sunday, September 21, and entries must be received at the Youth Building by 11 a.m. The youth category is for participants ages 16 and younger; the adult category is over age 16. This contest is free to enter, and as it is sponsored by King Arthur Flour, proof of its use in the baked good/s submitted is required for all entries, either in the form of a UPC code or an open bag of flour. For more information about the apple pie or cupcake contests, contact Elizabeth Higgins at (845) 340-3990, extension 316, or e-mail

The photo contest registration deadline has passed, but be sure to check out the display of entries in the Youth Building. On Saturday, September 20, kids 10 and up are invited to register between 10 and 11 a.m. for the Farm Olympic Games. The entry fee is $2 per person. The games begin at 11:30 a.m., including a corn shuck-off, zucchini javelin, haybale hurdles, pumpkin gutting, greased watermelon relay and sack races. For more information about the Farm Olympic Games, contact Emily Cook at (845) 340-3990, extension 389, or e-mail

Want to volunteer for the festival? E-mail for details. The Ulster County Fairgrounds are located at 249 Libertyville Road in New Paltz. For more information, visit and See you at the maple cotton candy booth!


Kites over the Hudson at Washington’s HQ

An expansive lawn overlooking the Hudson, the site of the headquarters of our country’s first president, an interesting museum and kites? Yes, kites! On Saturday, September 20 from 2 to 4 p.m., Kites over the Hudson offers free admission to tour Washington’s Headquarters, free admission to visit the history museum and free kites for the first 150 children under the age of 15. There’s even a Kite Hospital to help repair kite mishaps.

Kites over the Hudson takes place at Washington’s Headquarters State Historic Site, located at 84 Liberty Street in Newburgh. For more information, call (845) 562-1195 or visit