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Sound too good to be true? It's not! There's an opportunity to transform the abandoned former Mount McGregor Correctional Facility that houses dormitories, a gymnasium, a lake and nearly 100 other structures. 

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As with most things in Saratoga during the summer, the world of food is no different... there is a lot going on! From new franchises planning to set up shop to seasonal menus on Broadway to dining for a good cause, we've rounded up some businesses happenings in Saratoga's food and restaurant scene for you to catch up on.

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The Top Notch Tavern in West Galway reopened last fall at the site of what was originally (decades past) the West Galway Hotel. Current owner, James Palmateer, is the grandson of Doreen and David Palmateer, the original owners of the Top Notch Tavern who started it all, back in the 1960's.

After being sold, redefined and now restored to its original glory, remnants of the Top Notch Tavern's rich history are finally whispering from the walls.

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Dating back to the Civil War Era, this venue was built as a stagecoach stop and hotel in the 1860's. Civil War cavalry would often stop for a rest there!

It became The Top Notch Tavern after Doreen purchased it with her husband David in 1968, making their home there and running a small bar and grill operation that quickly grew in popularity.

With Saratoga's continued growth, nobody is denying the growing need for downtown parking solutions. There is some disagreement, however, in the best way to go about adding it.

The City Center has proposed plans for a 5-story High Rock paid-parking garage to replace the free parking lot behind the City Center. With the capacity to hold 480 vehicles, this new $10.4 million structure would be single use, offering parking only, which many citizens feel doesn't make economic sense for Saratoga.

"We continue to look at our project, and are assessing the design and components to see what it is we can do to be responsive, if possible," City Center President Mark Baker was quoted by the Times Union. "What we have proposed to date is not the finished product."

Opponents of the current proposed plan argue a giant concrete parking garage and connecting pedestrian bridge over Maple Ave would be an eyesore misaligned with the historical integrity of the city when that space could be better utilized while still adding much-needed parking.

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Citizens discuss High Rock parking at public forum, photo courtesy of Citizens for High Rock, used with permission

An international wedding and fashion photographer, Lisa Miller, is also the artist behind the lens of some of Saratoga's most stunning and unique horse photography, recently recognized with distinctions from ESPN and Bloodhorse.com.

This summer, the new Equine Gallery at Studio di Luce spotlights her acclaimed photography in a place of its own.

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With photographs that evoke such emotion, it's no secret that horses hold a very special place in Miller's heart. That's why her sales profit more than just her own bottom line.

Saratoga's own Healthy Living Market and Cafe has become one of the first grocers to eliminate plastic grocery bags in the northeast in its commitment to the environment and sustainability. This past Monday, the store announced they will not be offering plastic grocery bags for customer use, and will be encouraging guests to bring their own reusable bags.

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Everyone knows Saratoga is the place to be, especially at this time of year! From a new tequila company launching right in our own backyard to a Skidmore grad's startup gaining attention, we have you covered on what's happening in Saratoga's business world.

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As a parent, there's nothing better than knowing your child is enjoying a healthy meal that will help strengthen his/her body and mind. Or wait, maybe there's nothing better than watching your child's imagination soar as they giggle and play. Luckily, parents won't have to choose between the two come August 1st, the target opening date for the all new Saratoga's Kids Castle!

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This new restaurant will feature an elaborate indoor play center for kids of all ages while serving up entrees that are certified healthy. The menu has been co-created by Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Nichole Dooling of WholeNichole Nutrition and is filled with nutritious, hearty and authentic food representative of locally found ingredients.

Kids can look forward to oatmeal castle cookies, brick sandwiches, homemade baby food, and more. There is a complete breakfast and lunch menu daily for both kids and adults, as well as healthy snack options and a full cafe. Also, Saratoga's Kids Castle is conscious of food allergies and intolerances by allowing for specialty menu items for both parents and children who need to make alternative choices.

At Saratoga's Kids Castle, families can enjoy a healthy meal together, and then mom can kick back and watch the kids play as she enjoys a latte... or coffee... or loose tea... or smoothie... or, well, you get the idea.

Time flies when you're having fun! We can't believe it's been one year since The Pavilion Grand Hotel opened last May. Over the past year, the Pavilion Grand Hotel, who combined with two other independent businesses, Mingle on the Avenue and All Good Things... Spa | Yoga | Juice Bar have all made tremendous strides in the Saratoga downtown market and all had extremely successful first years of operation. With that being said, they want to celebrate... with you!
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Head on over to Denny's on Friday, May 22 to celebrate its recent remodeling! The newly-renovated and recently-reopened diner will feature a locally inspired design with a Saratoga Springs mural, updated chairs, tables and new modern accents. And that's not all Denny's will be featuring this Friday...

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