YMCA, Bike-Friendly Kingston to host bike repair clinics
Is your bike ready for spring? Teaming with Bike-Friendly Kingston, the YMCA of Kingston and Ulster County will be hosting free bicycle repair clinics on alternate Wednesdays, starting on Wednesday, March 24. Additional clinics will be held on April 21, May 5, May 19, June 2, June 16 and June 30. Come to the Y parking lot on Pine Grove Avenue in Kingston between 3 and 5 p.m. to have your bike checked over.
What else do you need to bike this spring? A bell is required by New York State law, and if you ride after dark, you need a set of front and rear lights. If you’re under 14 years of age, a helmet is required while riding. You can get bells, lights and bike helmets at the clinics.
No advance registration is required. The event is free, but donations are welcome. Be sure to bring your bike and wear a mask or other face-covering when you come.
In case of bad weather, the rain date is the following day (March 25, April 22, May 6, May 20, June 3, June 17 and July 1).
For more information, contact the YMCA bicycle educator, Tom Polk, at (845) 338-3810, extension 102 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rosendale Theatre presents classics of Irish cinema
To help celebrate St. Patrick’s Day on March 17, the Rosendale Theatre is recommending four Irish cinema films that will be the basis for a free online Zoom discussion about Irish cinema by two New York City film professors who live in the Hudson Valley. The series includes David Lean’s Academy Award-winning romantic drama Ryan’s Daughter, starring Robert Mitchum, Sarah Miles and John Mills, and Martin McDonagh’s 2008 black comedy In Bruges, starring Colin Farrell, Brendan Gleeson and Ralph Fiennes. Other films in the series include Alan Parker’s rocking 1991 hymn to Dublin bar bands The Commitments, with a largely amateur cast led by Robert Arkin, and Neil Jordan’s Academy Award-winning 1994 thriller The Crying Game, starring Stephen Rea, Forrest Whitaker and Jaye Davidson.
All four of these films are streaming on platforms including Amazon Prime for $2.99 to $4.99. The Zoom chat by professors Ted Folke and Howard Menikoff will be available without charge on the Rosendale Theatre website (www.rosendaletheatre.org), along with the movie trailers, from March 15 through the end of the month.
Kittens due to arrive at Ulster County SPCA
The Ulster County SPCA (UCSPCA) is hosting its second annual kitten shower on March 7 (think a baby shower, but for fur babies) inviting the public to donate much-needed supplies to care for kittens coming into the shelter. The UCSPCA will also be raffling off the opportunity to name a kitten to everyone who donates.
Every year, the UCSPCA finds homes for over 350 kittens. Providing care for that many kittens is a joy, but is not always easy.
Items needed for the care of kittens includes kitten wet food, nursing bottles, heating pads and more. The UCSPCA covers all these needs through donations – either the donation of items or money – as it does not receive support from either the ASPCA or the Ulster County government. Donations can be made during the kitten shower on March 7, during the shelter’s open hours from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., with social distancing measures in place. Donations are also accepted at all times in the donation bins at the SPCA location at 20 Wiedy Road in Kingston, just off Sawkill Road.
To learn more about the Ulster County SPCA’s kitten shower on March 7 and the items it needs donated, visit the website at www.ucspca.org or call (845) 331-5377. To become a volunteer with the Ulster County SPCA and foster kittens, e-mail the volunteer coordinator at email@example.com or call (845) 331-5377, extension 215.
Opioid overdose prevention efforts underway in New Paltz
The New Paltz Opioid Overdose Prevention and Response Team has recently added several new components to its prevention efforts in New Paltz. Here’s what’s new:
1. Seven Naloxboxes have been donated by the Ulster County Healing Communities grant project. Six community locations have received a Naloxbox and will be installing them: Elting Library, McGillicuddy’s, New Paltz Youth Program, P & G’s, Snugs and Water Street Market. Other town/municipal locations will be installing Naloxboxes later this year, once locations are open to the public (i.e., New Paltz Community Center, New Paltz Police Department and New Paltz Courthouse).
2. Any local business establishment or organization serving the public who would like a free kit is encouraged to complete a request form. A kit will be delivered and staff can receive Narcan training via the website, attending the monthly training via Zoom.
3. Free monthly Narcan training via Zoom
4. Free Narcan kits available at Dedrick’s Pharmacy.
5. Safe syringe disposal is now available at the New Paltz Police Department. This is the only location of its type in Ulster County.
6. Medication disposal is available 24/7 at the New Paltz Police Department and the University Police Department. Medication disposal is also available at Dedrick’s.
7. Free home kits for safe medication disposal are available at the New Paltz Police Department, Town Hall, SUNY New Paltz via college prevention specialist Jaclyn Cirello and Family of New Paltz.
8. A comprehensive website for opioid overdose prevention through the Town of New Paltz’s Office for Community Wellness is available at https://opioidpreventionnp.org.
9. Partnership with Ellenville Regional Hospital for comprehensive case management and support for individuals with an opioid use disorder or substance use disorder.
10. Peer support for those coping with a substance use disorder or opioid use disorder.
11. National Drug Take Back Day on Saturday, April 24.
12. “Safer Homes” campaign. Discounted lock boxes for safe storage of medications to prevent substance use disorder, opioid overdose and suicide. Dedrick’s Pharmacy & Gifts is serving as the collaborative partner and sponsor of this prevention initiative.
Ulster County receives nearly 400% increase in vaccine doses
Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan said this week that the county received a significant increase in its vaccine allotment from New York State.
“After requesting additional vaccines for the residents of Ulster County, I am pleased to announce that this week we have been allocated 3,340 doses directly to our Ulster County Health Department,” said Ryan. “This significant allocation represents an increase of nearly 400 percent from previous weeks. The predominance of these vaccines will be dedicated to our seniors over the age of 65. These new doses will allow Ulster County to more rapidly vaccinate our seniors who we know are in a higher risk category for Covid-19. I would like to thank New York State for their partnership and support. As County Executive, I will continue to advocate for a rapid and equitable vaccination process for all of our residents.”
Bardavon announces 48th annual Hudson Valley Philharmonic String Competition
The Bardavon will hold the 48th annual Hudson Valley Philharmonic (HVP) String Competition virtually on March 14 at 3 p.m. Although this event had to canceled in 2020, this year the event will be back and streaming direct to you through the “Bardavon Presents” YouTube Channel. The Bardavon is also streaming its nine semifinalists, who have been selected in advance from last year’s group of entrants. Information on how to watch is available at www.bardavon.org.
This international competition attracts a wealth of young musical talent from the finest conservatories in the US and abroad. The contest began in 1966 under the direction of maestro Claude Monteux, who was at that time the HVP’s artistic director/conductor. It was originally started as a way to find string players for the orchestra.
The 2021 First Prize winner will receive $4,000, a solo performance with the HVP during its 2021/22 season and a solo performance at the “Musical Landscapes of Italy” festival in August in San Quirico d’Orcia, Tuscany.
Info session on Village of New Paltz’s Drinking Water Source Protection Program
Chana Friedenberg, an environmental planner with the Hudson Valley Regional Council (HVRC), will present the general framework of New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS-DEC)’s Drinking Water Source Protection Program (DWSP2) and provide updates regarding the Village of New Paltz as it tests this framework to protect municipal drinking water. The presentation can be viewed on the Village YouTube channel and will take place at the next joint Town and Village meeting, held remotely, on March 10 at 7 p.m.
NYS-DEC developed the Drinking Water Source Protection Program in collaboration with the New York State Department of Health (NYS-DOH) and other agencies in order to provide guidance for municipalities to protect their drinking water from potential contamination. The framework consists of four steps: Stakeholder Group; Drinking Water Source Assessment; Protection and Implementation Strategies; and Progression and Maintenance.
The Village of New Paltz was selected as the test community for the Hudson Valley by the Hudson Valley Regional Council with the approval of the DEC. HVRC’s work is being funded by its Water Quality Planning Grant, a Federal Clean Water Act and New York State funding initiative. The Village of New Paltz’s stakeholder group began convening in September of 2020 and has been meeting monthly to ensure stakeholder participation and involvement in every step of the process.
“We are pleased to be the Hudson Valley’s selection for this community effort toward water quality protection across the state,” said mayor Tim Rogers. “This role continues to be a testament to the environmental and water quality care and concern this community places on these important assets.”
When convening the stakeholder group, representatives of various factions of the community were sought out to participate in this project. Members of the group include Village and Town residents who represent the business community, SUNY New Paltz and the New Paltz Central School District, among others. Ted Nitza, engineer and co-chair of the DWSP2 stakeholder group, said, “There are still openings in representation, such as county employees, agricultural workers and Mohonk Mountain House/Preserve/Golf Course, so we invite all members of the public interested in participating to reach out to us. This project relies on participation from the public, and stakeholders are key to developing a plan that puts drinking water protection in the hands of those who rely on it.”
The Village of New Paltz has completed Step 2, the Drinking Water Source Assessment, with the help of the Chazen Companies, who provided newly created maps of the potential groundwater and existing surface waters of the Village. Brandon Bera, SUNY New Paltz Chemistry Department staff member and co-chair of the DWSP2 stakeholder group, noted that the maps include “potential future contaminants that may impact the quality and quantity of source water. The maps delineate source water watersheds, locations of chemical storage within the Village and various land uses that may impact drinking water.”
Now the group is beginning Step 3 with guidance from Fairweather Consulting, who will be drafting the plan for future implementation.
For questions about the upcoming event or interest in joining the stakeholder group, contact stakeholder group co-chair Brandon Bera at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For questions about DWSP2, contact HVRC planner Chana Friedenberg at email@example.com.
New Paltz Police Reform Committee to hold public comment session for draft report
The New Paltz Police Reform and Reinvention Committee (NPPRRC) will hold its final public comment Zoom meeting on March 15 from 7 to 9 p.m. The session will provide members of the community an opportunity to comment on NPPRRC’s draft report before the committee delivers it to the Town Board for its consideration and approval. The town hall is open to the general public, and the link for the meeting will be made available closer to the date via the NPPRRC’s website.
This is the final public meeting for the committee. After the session, it will consider comments presented and make its final edits and revisions. The committee will then present the final document to the Town Board, who will discuss and adopt the proposal so that it can be sent on to the State Budget Office by April 1.
The Town Board established the NPPRRC and tasked it with examining and identifying policies and procedures that contribute to bias and racism within the Department. Over seven months, the committee conducted listening sessions that included elected officials, the Police Department and its officers and interested community members and organizations.
Wildlife on One to be aired on Lighthouse TV23
Lighthouse TV23, which serves Saugerties residents, will feature Wildlife on One, a limited series hosted by David Attenborough, on Saturdays starting March 6 through April 17 at 11 a.m. and 8 p.m.
Emergency Services director Steve Peterson to retire
County executive Pat Ryan has announced that after a distinguished career in public service, director of Emergency Services Steve Peterson has announced his intention to retire. Peterson has served the people of Ulster County for more than 35 years.
“I want to thank Steve for his 35 years of service and his dedication to Ulster County,” Ryan said. “During his tenure, Steve spearheaded numerous improvements to our public safety. Most notably, he oversaw the completion of the Public Safety Training Center, which will positively impact future generations of first responders. His work on behalf of the county will be sorely missed, and I wish him all the best as he enters the next phase of his life.”
“It has been an honor to serve the residents and visitors of Ulster County in the Department of Emergency Services throughout my entire career,” Peterson said. “I’ve had the privilege of working with true public safety professionals that go above and beyond every single day as they carry out the mission with compassion and empathy. With the support of County Executive Ryan and his staff, we have made several improvements in public safety. In addition, we recently received a $6 million grant from New York State that will improve radio communications throughout the county in support of first responders. I want to thank everyone for their dedication and support over the years.”
Under Peterson’s leadership, he oversaw the creation and the completion of the Public Safety Training Center on Ulster Landing Road in the Town of Ulster. The new facility is over 5,200 square feet, featuring 13 burn rooms and five forced-entry doors. The Public Safety Training Center, completed in May of 2020, provides additional hands-on training equipment that had previously been unavailable within Ulster County.
Free Covid-19 rapid testing site in Kingston opens
State Senator Michelle Hinchey has secured, through her advocacy with the governor’s office, a new Covid-19 rapid testing site in the City of Kingston. HealthAlliance Hospital will serve as a community testing site free of charge for people in the Hudson Valley.
Currently, the nearest state-run rapid testing sites open to Hudson Valley residents are in Albany and Rockland counties. In an effort to expand testing for area residents, Hinchey worked closely with the County Executive’s office to launch a Kingston-based site focused on free testing for all. Rapid tests administered at the new site will produce results in 15 minutes and help mitigate the spread of Covid-19.
“Finding fast and free Covid testing has been a major challenge across Upstate New York,” said Senator Hinchey. “Recognizing this urgent need, we advocated for Kingston to serve as the newest location for a state-supported rapid testing site and we’re thrilled that we were able to secure one so quickly. We are greatly appreciative of the state for partnering with us to help residents in the Hudson Valley. We will continue to work with our state, federal and local colleagues to ensure equitable access to Covid testing throughout Upstate New York.”
The HealthAlliance rapid testing site in Kingston will be open to all residents by appointment and is located at 27 Grand Street in Kingston. The testing site will operate Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
New Yorkers can schedule an appointment online by calling (914) 202-4530.
Adams Lawn and Garden Show kicks off
If ever a massive display of blooming plants, shrubs, and trees was called for to perk up the winter blahs, now is the time. Wandering through an Adams Fairacre Farms greenhouse bursting with color and horticultural artistry is a familiar Hudson Valley tradition for many Hudson Valley gardeners which always comes as a welcome event in late-winter, and particularly so this year after nearly a year living with an isolating pandemic.
Shows in Poughkeepsie and Newburgh have already begun and will run through Sunday, March 7. In Kingston and Wappinger, the shows start on Friday, March 5, and run through Sunday, March 14.
Each of the stores has its own landscape design team create these dazzling displays. Closing down their greenhouses after the holidays, Adams reinvents the space with hardscaping elements of brick and stone pathways, ponds and tinkling waterfalls, and mulched beds filled with perfectly healthy plantings. With an in-house nursery to supply flowering plants to greenhouse and gardening staff at just the right time for the exposition, visitors can wander through a veritable paradise in the lingering darkness of March.
Visitors can learn about which plants attract bees and butterflies, which ones do well in our region in sunlight or shade, what’s less likely to attract hungry deer, and which ones are native to the northeast—that is, non-invasive and safe to grow around our fields and woods. They can discover what is especially good for that new lonicera or cotoneaster they yearn to purchase, or learn how to treat their hydrangea to produce either pink or blue blossoms, or find out when to put bulb, rhizomes, and other perennials into the ground.
And for avid vegetable and fruit gardeners, a wealth of information on seed-starting, fertilizing, pest control, composting, and harvesting is available at every turn. They can learn the difference between the various layout options: row cropping, intensive wide-band planting, raised beds, vertical planting with shelves, baskets, and trellises, and container planting—what works and how to do it.
Adams started celebrating spring by showcasing plants and flowers over four decades ago. Could anyone have imagined what an inspiring extravaganza it has become? Covering over 6,000 square feet in each store with thousands of beautiful plants, and offering the expertise of dozens of talented personnel, the Lawn and Garden show is a welcome reprieve.
“After such a difficult winter, it’s great to be able to walk through our beautifully designed displays,” says Patrick Adams. “We are so proud of our landscaping department and all the employees that help put this year’s shows together.”
It’s no wonder that Adams Fairacre Farms was ranked #11 on Garden Center Magazine’s list of the Top 100 Independent Garden Centers for 2020.
Due to social distancing restrictions, live talks and demos will not be offered this season. But knowledgeable garden staffers will be on hand to answer questions. And special dedicated DIY areas will offer visitors the opportunity to scan and upload info on certain subjects. In the Poughkeepsie store, look for Tropical Container Gardens by Marnie Reilly and Emma Gosnell and Seed Starting by Randy Padgett, Jesse Eldrich, and Bron Bialy. In Newburgh, visitors can learn about The Victory Garden by Maureen Drury and Edible Landscape Design by Tim Bellamy. In Kingston, learn about Vegetable and Herb Gardening and Miniature “Fairy” Gardening. The Wappinger store will feature Do It Yourself Raised Beds by the Garden Center crew and Planting a Terrarium by Daniel Servedio.
Since each store will be offering something different, a visit to any and all of them might be just what’s needed for newbie and old-hand gardeners alike who can’t wait to get outdoors. Other COVID policy changes to the shows include: daily shopping hours of 7 to 8 a.m. for seniors and high-risk individuals; a one-way meandering route through each show; no food or drink allowed or served at the shows; no plant material used in the shows to be sold during show weekends; and children’s “Animal Finds” and other drawings to be placed in various departments within the stores and not inside the shows.
As always, the event is free and open to all comers during normal business hours, with capacity at any one time being limited to ensure a safe event for everyone. Visit https://adamsfarms.com/ and click on “Stores” for hours, contact information, and addresses.
— Ann Hutton
Saugerties police arrest man following road-rage incident
On Saturday, January 23 at 3:31 p.m.., the Saugerties Police responded to the area of 33 Sparling Road in the town for a report of a hit-and-run motor vehicle crash.
Upon arrival, officers interviewed the victim, who said that a white SUV struck his vehicle while attempting to pass it. The victim said both stopped their vehicles and the driver of the SUV and a second person confronted the victim. The driver of the SUV reportedly grabbed the victim in an aggressive and threatening manner while yelling. When the victim stated he was calling the police, the two men reportedly got back into the SUV and fled.
Last Friday, the Saugerties Police arrested and charged Keith J. Tambasco, 35, of Ravena, after an investigation concluded that he was the driver of the SUV. Tambasco was charged with leaving the scene of a motor vehicle crash and second-degree harassment.
Tambasco was processed and then released on a police appearance ticket returnable to the Town of Saugerties Justice Court on March 3.
The Reher Center offers fresh-baked Sunday roll
The Reher Bakery has become the Reher Center for Immigrant Culture and History and on Sunday morning, March 14, for one day only, locals can reunite with the community that loved this humble bakery and kept it in business for nearly a century.
Through the sponsorship of local bakeries (Adam’s Fairacre Farms, Boice Bros. Dairy, Bread Alone, Bread by Ellen, Cake Box Bakery, Cohen’s of Ellenville, Grazianos’s Downtown Café, Half Moon Rondout Cafe, Meredith’s Breads and The Bakery in New Paltz), Kingston neighbors can once again drop by the bakery to pick up fresh rolls and butter at the Reher Center for Immigrant Culture and History in Kingston
A taste-test panel of former Reher customers will be shown through a special Zoom program on March 14 at 3 p.m. Josie Waisbrot, alumna of the Culinary Institute of America and JT Pinna, baker at Half Moon Rondout Café, will share what made Reher’s rolls so special and how they might be recreated.
For a $25 ticket, participants will receive a bag of six, assorted fresh-baked rolls with all proceeds going to support the Reher Center’s Grow out Gallery/Build our Bathroom campaign and the work of People’s Place to fight food insecurity in our community.
To purchase tickets and receive information and options for roll pick up as well as the Zoom link, visit ReherCenter.org.
Friday Food Drive for Family of New Paltz and Rondout Valley Food Pantry on March 5
Mohonk Preserve is supporting Family of New Paltz at the Preserve’s Testimonial Gateway Trailhead, 35 Route 299 in New Paltz and Rondout Valley Food Pantry at the Preserve’s Spring Farm Trailhead, 50 Upper 27 Knolls Road in High Falls during their Friday Food Drive on March 5 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The Preserve will provide curbside drop-off near the trailhead visitor contact stations for donations of the following 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, sanitary napkins)
• Household products (laundry detergent, toilet paper, paper towels, dish soap)
• Special requests for the Spring Farm location include Rice Krispies cereal and muffin mix