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Posts Tagged ‘Hudson River’

TO DO IN THE HUDSON VALLEY 08/01-07/11

Thanks to the various Patch.com sites here is a brief listing of some fun exciting things to do in and around the Hudson Valley during the week of 08/01 – 07/11.

As always, I wish you days filled with wonder – take a minute to wonder what it is that made you smile today!

Please feel free to “share” this post with your family/friends! And don’t forget to leave your comments below, we love hearing from you!

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Living History in my hometown…Verplanck NY

Half Moon-River Day 2009 By now you all know how passionate I am about the Hudson Valley and the vast amount of history that was made right here in our valley.  I am excited too that my hometown (Verplanck, NY) played and continues to play a major role in history making.

Much of this blog post will be information currently available on various other websites (see resources below).  I’ll do my best to summarize what for me is both historical in scope and personal, as it’s, literally, history in my backyard.

Once again the replica ship of Henry Hudson’s original Half Moon exploration ship from 1609 has docked at the King Marine in Verplanck, NY.  This beautiful replica has been docking here during the winter for the past twelve (12) years.  The ship is one of only two such replicas in the world.

Now for the exciting news, recently the Half Moon’s captain, Chip Reynolds, hosted a group of filmmakers from the Netherlands who were visiting the Half Moon in consideration of using her for a documentary about Dutch explorers! How exciting the possibility of a documentary featuring this great ship with so much history connected to my hometown! After all, my high school was named after the famous explorer (Hendrick Hudson High)!

“It will be a story about discovering the new world that has never been done before,” said Erwin Godschalk, the film’s producer. Godschalk said the crew should begin filming in May and release the documentary in December. The Half Moon will be needed for about five to ten days of shooting.

Captain Reynolds is also the Director of the New Netherland Museum.  The New Netherland Museum operates the Half Moon. When the ship is under way Captain Reynolds uses a crew of volunteers to sail her. He also runs an educational program in partnership with New York State certified educators that integrates history, math, science and writing for fourth and seventh graders who can embark on a one-week voyage.

Watch the video to learn more about the ship and the programs run through the New Netherland Museum, which is the non-profit, educational institution that owns and operates the ship as a traveling museum dedicated to public education about the life in New Netherland during the 17th Century. Reynolds is the director of the museum.

The ship will be here until late March / early April at the King Marine in Verplanck.  Randy King, invites residents of the community stop by the marine at 270 6th St., Verplanck, any time to visit the Half Moon. You can reach him at 914-739-3413.

As reported on The New Netherland Museum’s website,”the original Half Moon was the first European ship to document entry into what we now call the Delaware Bay and River, and to explore the Hudson River to its navigable limits and was commissioned on March 25, 1609, for the Dutch East India Company. She was a ship of exploration and the spaceship of her age, designed to take a crew of twenty into unknown and uncharted waters.

Her captain, Henry Hudson, was already a famous explorer of Arctic waters when in 1608 he was hired by the Dutch East India Company to find a northeast, all-water route to Asia. but only a month out of port, the Dutch/English crew of his ship was disheartened after their passage north of Norway was blocked by Arctic ice floes. Many talked of mutiny.

Sitting in his cabin, the concerned captain considered his dilemma and options. A compromise was made. The course was changed and what began as a search for a Northeast passage became a transatlantic crossing to look for a Northwest passage to the rich spice. trade of China. Of course, some think that Hudson’s intention all along was to go Northwest.

Hudson in North America

After reaching the Maine coast and replacing a foremast lost in rough storms during her Atlantic crossing. the Half Moon sailed southward as far as the present day North Carolina Outer Banks. Then, turning northward, Hudson explored the Delaware Bay before arriving at the mouth of a wide river. Could this be a passage to the Pacific Ocean?

Hudson stopped at points on the New Jersey coast before sailing the small ship up the river which today bears the Captain’s name–the Hudson River, but it was soon obvious that it was an inland river, not a west-ward passage. Hudson sailed upriver to present-day Albany before returning down river, and claiming the region for the Dutch.

It would be many years before the significance of Hudson s 1609 voyage to America would be understood, and the Half Moon universally recognized as one of the best known ships of exploration.

America’s Dutch Heritage

Hudson’s voyage had important consequences. In making this historic journey, Hudson claimed the region for the Dutch and opened the land for the settlers who followed. Hudson s voyage, nearly ten years before the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, led to the establishment, in 1614, of the Dutch trading post, Fort Nassau, at present day Albany, New York. The first European settlements in the States of Connecticut, Delaware, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania were built by the Dutch beginning in 1624 and formed the Dutch colony of New Netherland, or Nieuw Nederlandt.

By the end of the 17th century, all of New Netherland had become the possession of the British crown. Yet the maps of the region still reflect the original Dutch settlements. Brooklyn, Hoboken, Block Island and hundreds more places take their names from the first Dutch colonists. These names hint at the early Dutch role in establishing our nation, an involvement that continued through to the American Revolution. …..”

As always, I wish you days filled with happiness and “wonder” – take the time to “wonder” what it is that made you smile today!

Resources:

http://peekskill.patch.com/

http://www.halfmoonreplica.org/

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Attended Teatown’s Hudson River 6th Annual EagleFest

Teatown’s 6th Annual Hudson River EagleFest 2010

It was so cold today that I can’t believe we actually braved the 25° F temps (with wind chills of about 17°F) to attend Teatown’s Hudson River 6th Annual EagleFest at Croton Point Park (Croton On-Hudson, NY) but we did, and I must say, I am truly glad we did!

EagleFest 2010

Of course, growing up along the banks of the beautiful Hudson River, I have seen many eagles soaring overhead, perched in trees around the shore line of Lake Meahagh in Verplanck, NY and of course floating on the ice drifting down the river.  Yet, I was thrilled to attend this event where I learned a few things that I may not have otherwise known about these wonderful birds of prey and our national bird. 

First we sat in on an informative lecture (check out a few sound bites from the lecture below) where we learned that the female eagles are usually the largest of the pair.  And, did you know the word “Bald” is from the Middle English word balled, meaning shining white. Some of the previous names are American Eagle, White-headed Eagle, and American Fish Eagle.   Did you also know that eagles generally take a mate for life; eagles will only separate if after a few years they are not able to have their own eaglets.   So how many of you know that eagles do not like to get their wings wet?  I knew that, but I can honestly say, I didn’t know the real danger it could pose – if an eagle’s wings get too wet as they dive into water for food it could actually prohibit them from flying.  If an eagle’s wings get too wet, they would actually have to swim/paddle to shore (which could be quite a distance) and then hope they can keep warm long enough for their wings to dry out – amazing!

Other interesting activities during the day included an Eagle Exploration Bus Tour, Hudson River Eagles talk by Christopher Letts, and Jonathan Kruk Storyteller (who we seen recently saw at the Knickerbocker Ice Festival) and more! 

We took the Eagle Exploration Bus tour which was a two hour tour of the “hot spots” best known for eagle spotting.  Funny thing is, my mom called me about 8:30am this morning to tell me to look out my window as there were two eagles sitting on the ice of Lake Meahagh (my backyard) LOL! Maybe next year’s EagleFest should include a trip to Lake Meahagh in Verplanck, NY.  Our tour stopped at three well known eagle spotting sites. 

1.  First we stopped at Croton Boat Ramp at Croton-Harmon Train Station.  Here we spotted a young eagle perched in a tree (too far away to get any good pictures unfortunately).  Here we also learned that the eagles not only dine on fish, but they will also scavenge for food and are often seen picking at a deer unfortunately killed by the passing trains.  The sad fact here is that eagles don’t react fast enough to sounds and/or light and it is estimated that approximately 2-10 eagles are killed each year by fast moving trains.

2.  Second stop was George’s Island Park Dutch Street, Montrose, NY.  Here we spotted a young eagle perched in a tree.  It was so bitterly cold along the river’s edge we were grateful for the warming tent serving hot cocoa!

Looking for Eagles-George's Island-Montrose

Young Eagle Perched In Tree-George's Island Park

3.  Finally was a stop at Croton Dam.  I must confess, by this point we were just too cold and sat this exploration out.  Instead we stayed on the bus and warmed up a bit!

As with the lecture, we learned more interesting facts about the eagles while on our bus tour.  For instance, did you know that Benjamin Franklin didn’t want the Bald Eagle to be our nation bird but instead fought for the Wild Turkey!  Who knew!  All in all we enjoyed the bus tour and the additional knowledge we learned from Lisa and Aaron our tour guides—thank you Lisa & Aaron! 

Informative Bus Tour

 I have always had a strong appreciation for the beauty of the area in which we live.  Attending today’s event only increased my awareness of the beauty that surrounds us each day and the fact that we need to do our part in preserving nature.  As it was stated today, the land or natural surroundings here along the Hudson River are the bald eagles home.  You wouldn’t go into your neighbors’ home and be disrespectful by littering or worse, so please, don’t be disrespectful of the homes of our national bird, the bald eagle!

For more information please consider contacting and/or visiting the

Teatown Lake Reservation 1600 Spring Valley Road, Ossining, NY? – (914) 762-2912?

DIAL - LISTEN & LEARN

As always, I wish you days filled with happiness and “wonder” – take the time to “wonder” what it is that made you smile today!

Learning about the Ice Industry in the Hudson Valley

Growing up with the Lake Meahagh and Hudson River in my backyard, I’ve heard my father tell stories of how this area once served as the Hudson Valley’s major ice industry.  Yesterday we went to the 4th Annual Knickerbocker Ice Festival at Rockland Lake State Park in Rockland County.  

Knickerbocker Ice Festival 2010 @ Rockland Lake

We attended the lecture The Rise & Demise of the Hudson River Ice Industry: Urban Needs & Rural Responses presented by Speaker: Wendy Harris, Principal Archeologist, Craigsmoor Consulting.  There where two points that stood out to me; the very same factors that were responsible for the rise of the ice industry were the very same factors that were responsible for its demise.  Two of these factors were the demand and technical advances.  The demand for ice became more and more important; first enabling the growth of the industry, later, unable to keep up with the advances with electricity (ice boxes, then refrigerators), lead to the demise.  It is also amazing to me that the life cycle of such an important era of time only lasted approximately 30 years from start to finish (approximately 1835- 1865).  Read more about the Story of Knickerbocker Ice Company and Rockland Lake and visit The Friends of Rockland Lake and Hook Mountain, Inc. or one of the many local historical groups.      

 Additional resources:

Palisades Parks Conservancy
Parks and Trails New York
New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation
New York – New Jersey Trail Conference

Hudson River Valley Greenway
Hudson River Valley Heritage. Type “Rockland Lake” in the search box for great photo archives of Rockland Lake 

 Then it was on to see the ice sculptures.  This year, four competing Ice Sculptors (Dan Bergin, Earl Covington, John Hedbavny, and Rob Patalano) were scheduled to participate.  Unfortunately when we were there only three sculptors were sculpting and we were only able to see two of them.  By the time we walked to the third sculptor, the sun (while making for a nice day) was too warm, making it dangerous for the ice sculptor to work unless wrapped in a covered tented area….darn.  But, we did enjoy seeing two sculptors and their works of ice.

Drawing of Woolly Mammoth Ice Sculpture

Woolly Mammoth In the Making

Woolly Mammoth being attacked by Saber Tooth Tiger in the Making

Woolly Mammoth being Attacked by Saber Tooth Tiger in the Making-

As an added pleasure, we were delighted to see and meet so many local artists as they set up their easels and painted the beautiful landscapes surrounding the lake!  We enjoyed meeting Phyllis Tarlow of Phyllis Tarlow Fine Art / Portraits from Hartsdale.  We watched and listened as Phyllis shared with us her love of painting landscapes and discovering new areas around the Hudson Valley to inspire her next painting!  Thank you Phyllis for sharing your love of the Hudson Valley with so many of us through your paintings!

Phyllis Tarlow at Knickerbocker Ice Festival 2010

We also enjoyed meeting Marylyn Vanderpool local artist from Harriman, NY.  Marylyn’s love of the Hudson Valley, her energetic spirit comes alive through her watercolors as she captures the beauty that surrounds us so eloquently.

Marylyn Vanderpool at Knickerbocker Ice Festival 2010

We briefly stopped to listen to award-winning storyteller Jonathan Kruk  Dressed in costume Jonathan tells colorful tales spun from the lore of historic Hudson Valley! Jonathan’s ability to truly capture his audience is amazing—you get drawn into his story and eagerly await the ending! Together with folk balladeer Rich Bala, they travel around the many villages & communities of the Hudson River and beyond since 1990, performing the region’s tunes, tales, and traditions at schools, museums, libraries, camps and historic sites. Thank you for sharing your storytelling talent with so many of us.  You can also purchase Jonathan’s tales on CD.

Storyteller Jonathan Kruk

Whew, as if the day hadn’t been exciting and different enough, we held true to our love of dining in the Hudson Valley and decided on Henry’s on the Hudson located at 634 Main Street, Peekskill, NY.  We enjoyed a delicious dinner overlooking the Peekskill Bay on the Hudson River all the while listening Mike play his guitar.  Mike’s selection of songs was fabulous!  Mike’s relaxing music combined with the spectacular view made for great evening. 

 I enjoyed shrimp over angel hair pasta and my honey satisfied his taste buds (and stomach LOL) with chicken breasts stuffed with spinach, garlic mashed potatoes and vegetables.  But wait, oh yes, those of you that follow my dinning in the Hudson Valley excursions know that we love dessert!  My honey’s famous line is “there is always room for dessert”!  Tonight being no exception we shared the   Chocolate Explosion which was a dark, dense chocolate decadence in an individual dessert with a rich creamy ganache oozing from the center and served with creamy vanilla ice cream…. oooohhh the most “wonderful” ending to a “wonderful” day!

As always, I wish you days filled with happiness and “wonder” – take the time to “wonder” what it is that made you smile today!

Eagles on the Hudson

Each time I see a Bald Eagle I stand in amazement and watch as it flys overhead or sits perched in a tree.  While we do not do many of our famous “day-trips” during the winter months, we decided to spend this weekend eagle scouting.  We simply couldn’t resist as our backyard (the lower Hudson Valley) sees more and more eagles each year along the majestic Hudson River.

 

According to a NYTimes.com article “…last year, Bald Eagles were once plentiful in New York. But by 1976, only one pair of eaglets remained. Environmentalists blamed pesticides, particularly DDT (which was banned in 1972), for interfering with the raptors’ ability to reproduce.

 

Today, roughly 500 bald eagles winter in New York (they migrate here when the waters begin to freeze in Canada and Nova Scotia), and 143 pairs remain in the state during the summer. Dr. Koontz said that eight pairs had stayed year-round in the lower Hudson Valley.”

 

With so many places to choose from, we decided to check out the places best known for spotting eagles.  On our list, Croton Point Park in Croton-On-Hudson, NY. While we did not see to many eagles, we did enjoy a great walk (of course we lucked out with Saturday being Spring like with temps nearing 50° F) along the Westchester RiverWalk which is a 51.5 mile pathway paralleling the Hudson River connecting some 14 towns/ villages/municipalities in Westchester.  More details about the Westchester RiverWalk.

 

 

On our way out of Croton Point Park we (and many many others) were shocked to see this hawk (we believe a Red Tail Hawk) just sitting in the field.  So many people were walking around him (at a safe distance but none-the-less) and he didn’t move.  I don’t think that was a good sign that he didn’t move or seem to be bothered by everyone lurking around and taking his picture.  Beautiful as he is, I’m fearful he was sick.

 

 

red-tailed-hawk-croton-point-park

Then Sunday morning we went out early (leaving the house by 8:00am is early for us on a Sunday LOL!).  We headed to Fleischmann Pier in Peekskill, NY.

 

fleischmanns-pier

Here we were successful in our eagle scouting adventure! 

Eagle on the Hudson @ Fleischmann's Pier

Eagle on the Hudson @ Fleischmann's Pier

 

 

 

 

Eagles @ Fleischmann's Pier

Eagles @ Fleischmann's Pier

 

Then it was off to Charles Point Marina just a short distance down the road from Fleischmann Pier.  There we saw a beautiful eagle perched in the tree! I was so excited! I only wish it wasn’t such an overcast / gray day and the picture was a bit clearer, oh well, it was still a great day!

 

eagle-pirched-in-tree-at-charles-point-marina2

 

Then on to my hometown of Verplanck, NY to steamboat dock.  There we were thrilled to see the most eagles we’d seen so far.  We watched as the eagles (about 4 or 5) enjoyed a ride down the river on the ice! 

It was a wonderful weekend!

 

As always, I wish you days filled with happiness and “wonder” – take the time to “wonder” what it is that made you smile today! :)

Winter's sunshine

Winter's sunshine

  

Hudson Valley Restaurant Week Returns!

Hudson Valley Restaurant Week 2010

Hudson Valley Restaurant Week 2010

Okay so many of your already know that my fiancé (a.k.a. “my honey”) and I enjoy traveling around the Hudson Valley and we enjoy eating at the many delectable restaurants (especially those along the Hudson River providing waterfront dining) we are surrounded by.

 

Lucky for us the 4th Annual Hudson Valley Restaurant Week begins March 15th and goes through March 28th! During these 14 days, your can enjoy three-course prix-fixe lunches for $20 and/or three-course dinners for $28 (excluding beverages, tax and gratuity).  With so many “wonderful” farms across the Hudson Valley, many of the chefs include locally grown products to compliment your meal and provide an even greater sense of all the pride and beauty the Hudson Valley has to offer.

 

Hudson Valley

Hudson Valley

 

 

So whether you are in Ulster or Westchester, Columbia or Dutchess or any of the 7 surrounding counties, why not try a few of the nearly 90 restaurants participating in this “wonderful” event.

 

We have had the pleasure of dinning at four of these restaurants and are looking forward to adding as many more as we can to our list of dinning experiences during Hudson Valley Restaurant Week.  As always, we look forward to sharing our dinning experiences with you and encourage you to share your dinning experiences with us by leaving a comment below.

 

 

 

2010-hudson-valley-restaurant-week-participating-restaurants3

 

 

As always, I wish you days filled with happiness and “wonder” – take the time to “wonder” what it is that made you smile today!:)

 

Another great waterfront dining experience on the Hudson River!

Striped Bass Restaurant

Striped Bass Restaurant

I am getting so spoiled. . . and, loving every delicious minute! We completely enjoyed another great meal at the Striped Bass restaurant located at 236 West Main Street in Tarrytown, NY. I have lived in Westchester County NY most of my life and still marvel at the beauty and culture that surrounds us.

I enjoyed tasty seafood ravioli – fresh ravioli stuffed with shrimp, crab and lobster – my honey enjoyed seafood linguini – shrimp, crab and lobster over linguini. Both were delicious! But of course we didn’t (or is it couldn’t) stop there, we thoroughly enjoyed / shared the most delectable molten lava chocolate desert! You know what they say; there is always room for desert!.
seafood-raviolli-smllseafood-linguini-smllmaltenlavachocolatedesert-smll
The sun was beginning to set as we sat and relaxed enjoying the view and a wonderful evening. As always, I wish you days filled with happiness and “wonder” – take the time to “wonder” what it is that made you smile today)!
sunset-over-hudson-smll

Dutchess County (NY) Fair

dutchess-county-fair-small1 Today we took one of our famous “day-trip” and went to the Dutchess County (NY) Fair in Rhinebeck – the sun was finally shinning and we had an absolutely great day!

We enjoyed an afternoon of fun, sun, shopping (of course), great food and entertainment! Today we watched the Championship Bull Riding event. This action packed show features top riders pitted with top bulls. Bull riding is a popular rodeo sport that involves a rider getting on a large bull and attempting to stay mounted for at least 8 seconds while the animal attempts to buck off the rider. The rider tightly fastens one hand to the bull with a long braided rope. It is a risky sport and has been called “the most dangerous eight seconds in sports. (http://www.dutchessfair.com/grandstand-performances.php)

I have to tell you of the most wonderful all natural bath and body productsscentastics-soap from Scentastics! I purchase the soap practically every time I see Pam and Ken at one of the Hudson Valley fairs! Today I couldn’t resist the Cool Breeze Shea Butter & Goat’s Milk soap – completely transforms me to a 5 star resort & spa – I would encourage you to give their products a try today!

Now I admit I am not an huge fan of cooking. But even I couldn’t resist the delicious flavored creamed honey from Remsburger Maple Farm and Apiary! I purchased the Blueberry Honey and the Cranberry Honey; heck even I can spread on toast! No, honestly these wonderful honeys can be used as glazes also so believe it or not, I’m planning on use the Blueberry Honey tomorrow night on a pork tenderloin (I’ll let you know the results next blog!).creamed-honey

I am also a huge dog lover I have a Pekingese and while I love her with all my heart, I know she is not as talented as these amazing dogs from Dock Dogs. This is very real sport with competitions and all!
dock-dogs2-smalldock-dogs-small

All in all it was a “wonderful” day! typical-county-fair-small

I will leave you with one of the most spectacular sunsets – this is sunset over the majestic Hudson River (that I love so much!) in Hyde Park, NY. As always, I wish you days filled with happiness and “wonder” – take the time to “wonder” what it is that made you smile today:)!
sunset-over-the-hudson-rive-in-hyde-park-small

Dinner on the Hudson @ the Hudson House

Cold Spring-Garrison NY-street pole flaf

Cold Spring-Garrison NY-street pole flaf

The Hudson House River Inn located at 2 Main Street on the serene waterfront approximately 100 feet from the beautiful Hudson River in the quaint village of Cold Spring, NY in Putnam County.  Cold Spring is well know for being a quaint antique shopping village.

Hudson House River Inn

Hudson House River Inn

Entrance to Hudson House River Inn Restaurant

Entrance to Hudson House River Inn Restaurant

gazebo-at-ribers-edge-in-coild-spring dscn0023 hudson-river-at-cold-spring Dinner was  absolutely amazing and delicious.  I enjoyed fillet of sole stuffed with crab-meat and summer vegitables!  Of course we started with a spectacular appetizer for two which included homemade Maryland crabcakes, shrimp cocktail, fresh mozzarella and beefsteak tomato w/basil, baby arugula drizzeled w/extra virgin olive oil – what can I say but Oh My Gosh! Between the garlic bread and brushuta, then the appetizeer I was already impressed!

Filet of sole with crabmeat stuffing and seasonal veggies!

Filet of sole with crabmeat stuffing and seasonal veggies!

Then off to a unique concert in Mesier Park in Wappingers Falls, NY featuring the Riverbank Banjo Band.  Totally an unexpected pleasure to learn from our new friend “Mary” down in Cold Spring-thanks Mary for letting us know about this concert and it was great sitting next to you and enjoy the sounds of this very unique band.

Mesier Park-Wappingers Falls NY

Mesier Park-Wappingers Falls NY

Here is a tiny sampling of this amazing band – I would encourage eveyone to check out the Riverbank Banjo Band’s calendar of events.

I’m looking forward to exploring more summer concert series in the Hudson Valley this summer – what about you?  Share with us the events you’ve attend or those that may be upcoming!  Until next time, happy concerting!

Staycationing and lovin it!

I am blessed to live in a beautiful area, the Hudson Valley.  My deck overlooks a beautiful man made lake (Lake Meahagh) which flows into the Hudson River.

I love sitting on my deck listening to the many sounds of nature on a beautiful summer evening or enjoying my first cup of coffee early in the morning.  The sounds of the winds blowing the trees, the many birds (nuthatches, gold finches, woodpeckers, cardinals and more) singing and the geese, swans ands ducks swimming happily in the lake–who could ask for more!

Lake Meahagh through the trees Flowers, flowers, flowers, who would not enjoy a beautiful summer evening sitting on a deck overlooking a lake enjoying the sounds and beauty of flowers blooming/shinning in the evening sunset.  For the first time ever I mixed lobelia and impatients in strawberry pots and the results–well spectacular to me! 

 lobelia and impatientscimg2201

We should take the time to enjoy our surrounds–not worry about if we can or should go away on vacation.  Times are difficult and we need to learn to appreciate what it most likely right in front of our eyes — so to all of you I wish you a happy summer filled with breath taking views, enjoyable sounds and most importantly laughter and love from those closest and dearest to you everyday!

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