Battenkill Valley Blog

October 2009 Archives

No...this is not a dream of mine, but actually, a reality.  Many folks don't know that - although the NY fishing season ended October 15 - that there are a few choice spots you can fish throughout the year, so long as you update your fishing license.  OK.  I'll spill it.  Admittedly, this is a "No-Kill, Artificial Lures Only" section but if you've read this far chances are you're strictly a catch-and-release kind of person anyway.  You understand,  appreciate and respect both the beauty of the fish and their natural reproductive cycle (which is strained under even the best of circumstances).  So, if you fish from the Vermont border to my bridge - the Eagleville Bridge, that is - you are perfectly legal in your pursuit so long as you adhere to the rules of the DEC (see above).  Yes, you know it's going to be cold.  Frigid even.  But you also know the rewards.  And I ain't necessarily talking fish here.  Have fun.  And let me know how you made out.  
I am NOT saying the Cambridge Hotel is haunted.  Shea, the manager, has asked me NOT to repeat stories about black holes opening up in Rm. 206, mysterious mirror writings or little children being seen and making a raucous on the unused third floor.  And there is NO file filled with guest accounts of otherwordly encounters or photos of ghostly globes hovering over guests or hanging around the outside of the hotel.  None of that!  What I AM saying is that this Friday, October 30, they are having a haunted Halloween party featuring music by the Blackouts, where you can "swing with the spirits and groove with the ghosts", enter a Prince and Princess of Pie contest and even stay overnight for just $99 so you can party all night!  Yes, this is a turn-of-the-century hotel with a storied past, but I'm not saying.  Just saying, that's all.
Come see my friend Tim Nelson at the Fort Salem Theater this weekend!  He'll be performing with the easy-on-the-eyes Sandra Bargman,  most recently seen as Aldonza in Man of La Mancha.   You may recall Time from Fort Salem's They're Playing Our Song with Benita Zahn. (He also directed my show Corn! The Musical).  Sandra Bargman has appeared in Broadway national tours, off-Broadway, in regional theater, and cabaret from New York City to Tokyo. Tim Nelson was the resident musical director and a director for Park Playhouse in Albany for over ten years, and is currently managing director of the Rose Theater in Westminster, CA.  This is big time talent the likes of which you'd have to go to the "other" Broadway in NYC to see.  That's pretty cool, when you think about it.  You'll be impressed.  A Battenkill Guaratee!

A Good Haunting

It's kind of comical, isn't it, when people make "haunted houses" our of split-level homes built in the 70's?  C'mon!  If you want a a real haunting you don't want Mid-Century Modern, you're going to have to find a place that's been around a while, like the R. Stiles House in Argyle.  Just one look at this place and you'll believe!  Friday and Saturday, October 23 and 24, are a good time to do so, as they are hosting a Haunted House there 7-9pm Friday night and  6-9pm Saturday night.  (If you're heading up to Glens Falls it's an easy place to stop along the way, right on Rt. 40.)  Tickets are just $5 and all proceeds go to continuing the restoration of this beautiful and historic house. 

Which is a good thing, as we want to keep the, er, residents happy. 
As you know by now, the Battenkill Valley is chock filled with interesting and fun things to do.  Often, many of the activities in this valley just aren't that commonly found outside of it.  And they are just as often happening on backroads, off the beaten paths as they say.  That's why you read this space (and should be telling your friends to!).  This time out, the "fun thing to do" isn't an exclusive and you don't need to follow the backroads to find it...BUT...

Leaf peeping is everywhere, I know.  Many people go to Vermont to see the fall foliage.  I understand.  But Vermont's hills don't have as many conifers mixed in with the maples, oaks, aspens, beeches and birches as the Battenkill Valley does.  And, as Yogi Berra famously said "nobody goes there anymore because it's too crowded."  So what you want to do is get yourself lost on the back roads of the Battenkill Valley - on lanes like this one - and see a photo op around every bend.  Smell the wood smoke from the stove fires burning.  Breathe the air, so crisp it practically snaps into your lungs.  Be different.  Take the road less traveled.  Explore.  Now is the time to discover what at least one writer believes is the most beautiful foliage in the world, right out your back door. 

See you on the trail.
If you're not familiar with the Agricultural Stewardship Association you should get up to speed on them, because these are the guys who are saving much of our glorious open spaces from evil intent.  To fund that effort, in part, they are hosting their  8th Annual Landscapes for Landsake Art Exhibition. The Opening Reception will be held Saturday, October 10th from 3 to 6 p.m. in the historic barn at Maple Ridge, 172 State Route 372, in Coila.  (Driving Route 372 is an adventure in its own right.)   Admission on Saturday is $5, children and students are free. The gallery will also be open Sunday and Monday, October 11th and 12th from 12 to 4 p.m. or the following week by appointment.  You'll go because you want to see many of the best Battenkill-based artists all in one place, including:

Corrina Aldrich, Constance Alexander, Paul Baker-Porazinski, John Begin, Michael Burke, Valerie Craig, George Dirolf, Kathryn Edwards, Stu Eichel, Dominick Guida, Clarence King, Karen Koziol, Dona Ann McAdams, Leah McCloskey, Virginia McNeice, Susan Harding Merancy, Bob Moylan, Harry Orlyk, Leslie Parke, Leslie Peck, Barbara J. Sussman, Brian Sweetland, Mark Tougias, George Van Hook, Laura Von Rosk, Lawrence White and Regina Wickham. 

You'll see that Art & Agriculture really are what the Battenkill Valley is all about, and you'll be amazed at how inspiring this land of ours can be.   

Well, those Saturday Evening Cabarets at the Fort Salem Theater are starting again and this time with a real bang.  (For the uninitiated, these are professional singers/storytellers who perform in the intimate Cabaret setting of the Fort Salem Theater, where you sit and enjoy coffee and rich desserts while being entertained.)  On October 10, international entertainer Laura Roth, "one of the world's greatest cabaret singers" (Show Business) will perform in "The Way They Were",  a show that promises generous portions of both music and comedy (including spot-on impressions of some of the world's most popular female entertainers). Ms. Roth has performed for audiences in Paris, London, Manhattan, and now...Salem.  Go figure.  Fort Salem Theater Owner Jay Kerr must have some pretty good connections.  Seating in the up-close-and-personal setting is very limited, however, so you better reserve now.  It's not often world-class entertainers come to our little corner of the world.  Except, in Fort Salem's case, it's every Saturday evening.  Call Jay at 854-9200. 

Leave a Comment

Al Budde

40 minutes East of Saratoga and a world away; the Battenkill Valley is a Cornucopia of Cool. No Interstates. No noise. No hurry. Called "The Tuscany of New York", the region abounds in farm-crafted cheeses, creameries, heirloom vegetables and specialty meats you can buy right off the farm. Art galleries that will amaze you. Scenery that will inspire you. And through it all runs the Battenkill River, an astonishingly clear and gentle water playground that also happens to be the toughest trout fishery in the U.S.A Like touring? There's a reason the largest pro-am bike race in America happens here. And don't get me started on the Revolutionary war history, or the “you won't believe what I found: antiques and shops.

AL BUDDE has a lot of interests in fly fishing, playwriting, canoeing (and tubing), history, shopping, dining, friendships and he counts himself among the fortunate few who have found a place where all of those things collide: The Battenkill Valley. He knows (almost) everyone here, and will be your personal guide to all of those hidden places, activities, sights and scenery it would take you years to discover on your own. Discover the Battenkill Valley. Have fun. Make new discoveries. Renew your soul. And start here!


Email Me