Selina seeks to cooperate with Woodstock on former Lodge property

Bill McKenna and Lorin Rose (photo by Dion Ogust)

As officials sort out how to proceed with the consideration of permitting for renovations at the former Woodstock Lodge, some neighbors wanted assurances from the Woodstock Town Board that their concerns are being addressed.

Robin Sears told the board at its July 9 meeting that she remains “cautiously optimistic” about Selina Woodstock, the new venture that has taken over the property on Country Club Lane, but past issues, such as noise and traffic remain a concern. Sears thanked Supervisor Bill McKenna for keeping the communication channels open.

The ZBA recently ruled Selina Woodstock started work prematurely and that building permits were issued illegally. It ruled that a site plan review by the Planning Board was required. Selina apparently filed an application for that review on July 2. 

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McKenna said he shared neighbors’ frustrations with the situation. “An individual came in, promised all kinds of things. He’s out of the picture now,” McKenna said.

Former owner MHS Worldwide Holdings had modified the site plan last year without Planning Board approval. MHS, with its principal Michael Skurnick, has apparently stepped away from the process.

McKenna said he was heartened to see Selina cancel July 4th events while issues are being resolved. “Their attorney assured me today they would stop construction,” McKenna said. “They have a (Planning Board) application for a site plan review to correct the violations.”

While some rooms are available for rent, there are lingering issues, aside from the lack of a complete site plan review. County Health Department approvals for the pool are uncertain and the liquor license for the bar is pending, McKenna said. “Selina has indicated they want to sit at the table and be good neighbors,” said McKenna, who added the ball is in the Planning Board’s court.

“The silver lining to all this is we have now implemented a noise ordinance,” Councilman Lorin Rose said. “That’s another tool in our toolbox to get them to behave themselves.”

McKenna said he’d like to have Selina, the Planning Board and a Town Board member sit down together.

Patrick Carlin, brother of the late comedian George Carlin, has a gig playing music and telling stories at Selina. He defended the business and said they’re not bad people.

“Just look at them as the next horse in the race who has taken the baton,” Carlin said, mixing his sports metaphors. “I wouldn’t be tying up with them if I thought they were evil in any way.”

When the July 4 weekend opening party was canceled, he still got paid, he said, calling it a classy move.

McKenna said that nobody, including the neighbors, wants to see the place get shut down. They just want to make sure the owners go through the correct review process.

Carlin said that was good to hear.

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