Ulster County volunteers honored with MLK Day drive-thru celebration
Volunteers from Ulster County non-profits are welcome at UlsterCorps’ twelfth annual MLK Day Celebration of Service on Saturday, January 16 from noon to 2 p.m. outside the Rosendale Recreation Center at 1055 Route 32 in Rosendale (the snow date is Monday, January 18).
The event will celebrate the broad circle of kindness and generosity that demonstrates the value of the volunteer spirit across all generations. The event is free and will include goodie bags for all attendees who pre-register by January 11. There will also be an event program listing the names of all volunteers who pre-register by January 11 and all businesses and agency partners supporting the event.
This will be a drive-thru event, Pre-registered volunteers are welcome to drive through any time between noon and 2 p.m. to receive their event program and words of gratitude. Attendees are asked to wear a mask or face covering while at the event.
To register for this free event, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call/text 481-0331.
Climbers purchase Antlion Cliff
The Gunks Climbers Coalition (GCC) and Access Fund are have announced the purchase and opening of a new section of cliff line in the Shawangunk Mountains. The newly acquired property includes 1000 feet of the Millbrook Mountain cliff line, including historic Antlion Crag. This acquisition adds a new backcountry climbing area to the Gunks, offering a uniquely remote experience that boasts traditional climbing, top roping, overhangs, vertical faces and even a little crack climbing — ranging from 5.5 to 5.13.
“We were given a rare opportunity to secure access and protect a beautiful portion of the Shawangunk Ridge,” says GCC chair Peter Cody. “This acquisition is an important milestone for climbing conservation and will showcase and safeguard the diverse nature of the ridge itself.”
This section of cliff line along the southern portion of Millbrook Mountain, was privately owned and inaccessible to the public.
In the spring of 2018, GCC and Access Fund began partnering with neighboring landowners Robert O’Brien and Kevin Abberton in a three-way purchase to secure the cliff line and the undeveloped forest below, as well as provide public access. The two private landowners purchased additional forested acreage around their existing home sites and agreed to an access easement across their land to make the cliff line publicly accessible. Access will be established via a new trailhead off South Mountain Road in Gardiner and a mile-and-a-half of trail to reach the cliff.
Antlion is the 29th climbing area conserved through the CCLP, which provided $109,000 to allow GCC to purchase this property. The CCLP is a revolving loan program. Since its inception, the fund has loaned $3.2 million to local climbing communities around the country to secure and permanently conserve climbing areas.
Candidates sought for Gardiner offices
The Gardiner Democratic Committee (GDC) is looking for Gardiner residents interested in running for town offices this coming November and being endorsed by the GDC. The positions on the ballot include county legislator (UC District 16), town supervisor, town board member (two positions), town clerk, highways and roads superintendent and town court justice.
Residents interested should send an email to email@example.com expressing interest and, briefly, their reasons for possibly seeking office. A resume is also requested if available. Questions can be sent to the same address, but be sure to include a phone number for a return call. Those interested will need to complete a questionnaire that will be sent to them shortly after their initial email.
Bear cub found in Woodstock
One bear cub found himself in the right place at the right time thanks to a concerned resident and quick action by Woodstock Town Supervisor Bill McKenna, the Department of Environmental Conservation, and a local wildlife rehabilitator.
McKenna received a call from Tina Bromberg on December 31 at approximately 8 a.m. about a cub wandering in her yard with the mother nowhere in sight. Both McKenna and Bromberg were concerned that this cub left on its own would not make it through the winter.
Bromberg helped keep the cub nearby and helped catch him.
The DEC referred McKenna to Missy Runyan from Friends of the Feathered & Furry Wildlife Center in Hunter. “Missy came down with an assistant and though it took us the day, we finally did catch the little guy,” said McKenna in an update on the town’s Facebook page. “At one point, Missy and I talked about the dangers of feeding bears and how it leads to situations like this.”
McKenna looks forward to having Missy back to Woodstock some time in February or March to give us some tips and pointers on how to deal with the bears.
According to Runyan, the cub is doing well despite weighing only 13 pounds.
Mohonk Preserve holds food drive for Family of New Paltz
Join Mohonk Preserve in supporting Family of New Paltz at the Family food drive this Friday, January 8 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Preserve’s Testimonial Gateway Trailhead at 35 Route 299 in New Paltz. The preserve will provide curbside drop-off near the trailhead visitor contact station for donations of non-perishable items: canned goods (vegetables, fruits, soups, juices, jelly, peanut butter); dry goods (cereals, rice, pasta); personal-care items (toothpaste, soap, shampoo, conditioner, deodorant, feminine hygiene products); and household products (laundry detergent, toilet paper, paper towels, dish soap)
“We’re proud to partner with Family of New Paltz through our business membership program, which includes opportunities for Family clients and staff to get into nature at the Preserve,” said Mohonk Preserve director of membership Elena Batt. “We’re grateful to collaborate with our community to help Family continue to provide help to those in need.”
Christmas tree pick-up
The Village of New Paltz will be mulching Christmas trees this year and offering the mulch to anyone interested in it for gardens or pathways. Residents are encouraged to get their trees out of the house before they dry out as they pose a high fire risk.
There are two ways you can dispose of your Christmas tree to be mulched: In the village, leave it curbside any time before 10 a.m. this Friday, January 8. If you choose this option, please give the DPW a call at 255-1980 to say that the tree is ready for pick-up. The second option is to drop the tree off at the village DPW next to the village hall, 25 Plattekill Avenue before 10 a.m. on Friday, January 8.
For additional information, contact village clerk Alberta Shaw at 255-0130 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mulch will be available free of charge to the public after Monday, January 11 at the village’s waste water treatment plant located off Huguenot Street.
Virtual warm-up to winter showcase
The New Paltz Climate Action Coalition, Interfaith Earth Action, Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess and Sullivan counties and others plan a virtual winter energy showcase on January 14 at 6 p.m. Hear about easy and affordable ways to winterize your home, how to sign up for community solar and save money and learn about different energy options for your home. Register at http://bit.ly/warmuptowinter2021.
Participants include Astral Community Solar, NY State Solar Farm, Suncommon, HWS, Rycor, New Beginnings Window and Door, Foamco, Citizens for Local Power, Sustainable Hudson Valley, New Yorkers for Clean Power, Hudson Valley Community Power, Hudson Valley Energy Navigators and others.
Rosendale theatre awarded “science on screen” grant 2021
The Rosendale Theatre the recipient of the Science on Screen® grant award. This is the second year that the Rosendale Theatre, one of only 39 venues nationwide, has received this award.
The 2021 Science on Screen grant (SoS) will fund three movies and related science and technology discussions: 1. The documentary, Coded Bias, with a discussion on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and its human missteps in perception and ethics; 2. The film, The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, with a discussion on literacy, youth and science and technology (the power to build grown-up solutions); and 3. The film Awakenings, with discussion on neuroscience and ethics in experimentation: more tales of how science works.
This year the Rosendale Theatre actually plans to present a fourth SoS film and discussion on musicology and brain science culture co-presented with our Music Fan Film Series in May: all details for that to be announced.
The Science on Screen grant program exists thanks to a collaboration between the Coolidge Corner Theatre and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, awarded to independent cinemas, museums and community groups that present film. The program pairs cinema entertainment with provocatively matched discussions and presentations by experts, who discuss scientific, technological or medical issues raised by each film. The purpose of the program is to inspire an increased appreciation for STEM topics — science, technology, engineering and mathematics — in and of themselves and as a necessary part of a broader cultural understanding.
The first movie, Coded Bias, is on the Rosendale Theatre virtual cinema portal now and will run through January 28. Briefly, Coded Bias is an exploration of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and of MIT Media Lab researcher Joy Buolamwini’s startling discovery of racial bias in facial recognition algorithms.
On the evening of Wednesday, January 27, the theatre will live stream an online discussion on topics surrounding AI design: What is AI? What processes are involved in designing and using artificial intelligence and technology in general? How do we understand the process of moving ideas forward, especially when we don’t get things right at first. Who decides what is acceptable error?
All discussions are made available after the event on Rosendale Theatre’s YouTube page: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtp8OTJ-TDm5UYcY9206cAQ.
Stay tuned for the details of all the Science on Screen 2021 films and event dates coming up at www.rosendaletheatre.org.
Change of meeting dates
During January and February, the Historic Preservation Commission of the Village of New Paltz will hold its regular meetings on the second Monday of the month: January 11 and February 8 at 7 p.m. The meetings will take place via Zoom and will be livestreamed on YouTube for public access. Check the Village of New Paltz website for meeting agendas and livestream links. For more information, please contact the commission secretary at email@example.com.
Patriotic art scholarship contest
VFW Auxiliary Post 8645, New Paltz has announced the kick-off of the VFW auxiliary’s annual Young American Creative Patriotic Art Contest. Local students in grades 9-12 have the opportunity to compete for $31,500 in national scholarships.
• Students in grades 9-12 by the March 31 deadline who are enrolled in a public, private or parochial high school or a home-study program
• Student must be a U.S. citizen or U.S. national.
• Student does not have to be related to a VFW or VFW auxiliary member to participate, but the student must attend school in the same state as the sponsoring VFW auxiliary.
Students must submit an original two- or three-dimensional piece of artwork. Digital art, photography and jewelry are not accepted. The entry must have been completed during the current 2020-2021 school year and the application must include a teacher or supervising adult’s signature.
Students begin by competing at the local VFW auxiliary level. The first-place winner from each auxiliary advances to district competition with district winners advancing to the state competition. State first-place winners compete for their share of $31,500 in national awards and the national first- place winner is awarded a $15,000 scholarship. National first- through tenth-place winners are featured in the VFW auxiliary magazine and on the VFW auxiliary website. All state winning entries will be held and displayed and judged at the VFW Auxiliary National Convention that will take place July 31-August 5 in Baltimore, Maryland.
The VFW Auxiliary started the Young American Creative Patriotic Art Contest in 1979 to recognize up-and-coming artists and encourage patriotism in youth.
Interested students, parents and teachers should contact Cindy at (845) 332-0734 for more information.
To download an application and see the 2020 winners, visit https://vfwauxiliary.org/scholarships.
Kingston conversation series addresses race and racism in healthcare
Kingston Reads, a series of community conversations about race and racism, will begin on Thursday, January 21 —with a slightly new format and a new mix of moderators.
The first session will be held that date from 5-6 pm. on Zoom when moderators Erica Brown, Charlotte Adamis and Shaniqua Bowden are joined by special guests Dara Lurie and Marsha Sebro for a conversation about race, healthcare and healing. Registration will open on Thursday, January 7 at https://kingstonreads.org.
Conversations in 2021 will be scheduled monthly (every third Thursday) and they will be theme-based. While there will always be at least one recommended book for each conversation, there will also be suggested short articles, videos, and podcasts related to the monthly theme. “We wanted to open up access by offering a variety of resources,” said Adamis. “Folks are encouraged to read, listen, or watch—and they are also welcomed to just show up and be part of the conversation. There’s no test, no requirements, other than a sincere desire to be engaged in the work of antiracism.”
The recommended books for the January session are My Grandmother’s Hands: Racialized Trauma and the Pathway to Mending Our Hearts and Bodies by Resmaa Menakem; Dying of Whiteness: How the Politics of Racial Resentment is Killing America’s Heartland by Jonathan M. Metzl; and Killing the Black Body: Race, Reproduction, and the Meaning of Liberty by Dorothy Roberts. Links for related short articles, videos, and podcasts are on the Kingston Reads website.
Rough Draft Bar & Books is offering a discount on book purchases for Kingston Reads, as well as a “pay it forward” program; participants can buy two copies and Rough Draft will give the second copy away to a reader in need.
In February, the Kingston Reads conversation will be part of Kingston’s Black History Month. On Thursday, February 18 at 5 p.m. participants will be invited to join the moderators for a spirited, virtual conversation about race and social classifications inspired by Isabel Wilkerson’s award-winning book, Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents. More information will be posted on the Kingston Reads site by the end of January.
Police investigate hit and run in Ulster County
Last Saturday afternoon at approximately 2:20 p.m., state police from the Ellenville barracks responded to Whitfield Avenue in Accord for a report of a car/pedestrian hit and run.
Upon arrival, troopers observed an unconscious man, later identified as George Barley, 62, of Accord, laying approximately eight feet off of the west shoulder off the roadway. Troopers were assisted at the scene by Accord Kerhonkson First Aid Squad and the Accord Fire Department. Barley, who was unconscious and breathing, was transported to Westchester Medical Center via helicopter.
According to police, Barley was walking with his wife when she observed a gray sedan driving south on Whitfield Road at a high rate of speed. The vehicle struck her husband and continued on without stopping.
State police are asking anyone who was in the area at that time and may have witnessed the accident or the vehicle before or after the accident to contact the state police at Ellenville at 845-626-2800.