It is easy to see that Steve Farris has an enthusiastic and optimistic view on life. A Saugerties native, Farris is a 1997 graduate of Saugerties High School. Leaving the area in 1999 and then returning to the Hudson Valley in 2004, Farris has been back in Saugerties for about a year. He holds a degree in fitness, nutrition and exercise science from Queens College. He is a self-employed beach-body fitness coach with a goal of helping men and women reach their own goals. Farris and his wife Diane live in Barclay Heights and are expecting their first child.
What makes Saugerties unique?
I think Saugerties is the friendliest town in the Hudson Valley. It is a close-knit community built on small businesses where everyone helps and supports each other. I feel like everyone knows their neighbors, and when you come here you feel like there is something special in the community.
What do you like the most about Saugerties?
I love the options that surround us here. Especially the ones that involve being active. There is something for all seasons. There is skiing in the wintertime. There is hiking, biking and kayaking,
This is a great community for running. There is always something readily available to get you out and moving.
I also love the eateries. There are so many great ones. My wife and I love going to ‘Cue for the relaxed, outdoor atmosphere. We also love Sue’s Pizza. It has such a great, warm and friendly atmosphere. For something sweet, we love Sugar-Me-Sweet Bakers. I usually love to cook, making some of those traditionally unhealthy meals a bit healthier. But when we go out, we love heading to those local places.
What’s the biggest issue Saugerties needs to address?
One thing I noticed recently is that they took some of the speed bumps out of Cantine Field. I worry about the kids with those changes. We have the most incredible sports complex here, and without speed bumps I worry that it will be dangerous. There are too many kids and families walking through there.
What do you think this community is lacking?
Our country is facing an epidemic of obesity. Whether it’s the town next door or it’s Saugerites, we have a problem with complacency in our lives. It is hard for us to get up and get going, especially with the long winters that we tend to have here. I’d love to see more activity. Not necessarily going to the gym.
There are many opportunities out there to get fit and more active. We have many areas around here for hiking and such. But time is a priority and we need to re-prioritize our lives to find time to get more active every day. That is actually one of my focuses as a beach-body coach. I want to help create community driven fit clubs and I am currently running a free drop in fit club at the World of Dance in Barclay Heights.
What is it about Saugerties that you think draws people back?
I think there is a sense of home here, a sense of comfort. There is opportunity in the area, and it’s a wonderful place to grow a family. When I was growing up here, it didn’t have too much going on. It’s done a complete 180. There is a spark here, especially in the village. Saugerties has become a destination.
Do you have any heroes?
I do. A real inspiration in my life is my mother. She never stopped following her dreams of opening up her own business. It’s been inspiring for me to watch her take that step later in life, to not give up and to pursue her dream.
For which fault do you have the most tolerance?
I would say maybe owning our mistakes. I have tolerance from people who are willing to own those mistakes and grow from them.
Do you have a favorite motto or quote?
“Help enough other people get what they want and you’ll have everything you need.” Zig Ziegler
What qualities do you admire most in others?
I really appreciate people who genuinely care for others and put others before them in all that they do. A genuine, thoughtful person. Someone who is aware of others in their surroundings and looks out for others. That shows character.