STS opens season with 'Spitfire Grill'

Phoenicia — The Shandaken Theatrical Society (STS) Playhouse in Phoenicia will present “The Spitfire Grill” a musical about a mysterious stranger that arrives alone in a small town and finds love and family. “The Spitfire Grill” opens Memorial Day Weekend and will start a new theatre season in a town that is rebounding after the effects of Hurricane Irene.

Burroughs monument hike this weekend in Shandaken

Shandaken — Celebrate naturalist John Burroughs’ 175th birthday year with a hike up Rochester Hollow in the Town of Shandaken on Saturday May 12 to see a monument to naturalist John Burroughs.
Meet at noon at the Rochester Hollow trailhead parking lot on Matyas Road just off Route 28 between Pine Hill and Big Indian. Registration is not required for the hike, which will be cancelled if there is heavy rain at 11 a.m. For weather confirmation, call 586-4973.

Shandaken stalls sewer project

By Jay Braman Jr.
The Shandaken Town Board balked Monday at a critical decision on the longstanding Phoenicia sewer issue, putting the fate of the project in jeopardy.

Before the board that evening was a resolution to set a public hearing on the creation of a Phoenicia sewer district.

But after harsh criticism of the proposal from both the audience and town board members, the resolution was tabled until a full town board could be assembled.
Supervisor Rob Stanley was on vacation this week.

J Rocco's Steakhouse and Speakeasy open in Shandaken

By Jay Braman Jr.
There’s a new restaurant in the Shandaken area where one of the most notorious criminals in American history, a former Public Enemy Number One, holds a place of distinction, not only on the wall but also in the heart of the eatery’s owner.

According to Erik Risher, who just opened J Rocco’s Steakhouse and Speakeasy, it was people like Public Enemy Number One, otherwise known as Depression era bank robber and bootlegger John Dillinger, that were some of the region’s first economic developers.

Farm stand law sprouts new ventures

By Jay Braman Jr
Along with the dandelions, two new businesses have sprouted up this spring in Shandaken, where just last month the town adopted a new law that cleared the way for larger farm stands.
Both are readying locations alongside Route 28 in Mount Tremper close by Hanover Farms, the business largely responsible for the new law, establishing that stretch of road as the breadbasket in town.

Hanover Farms sues Shandaken

By Jay Braman Jr.
Al Higley, the owner of Hanover Farms in Mount Tremper, is suing the Town of Shandaken over a stop-work order the town’s code officer issued to his business two weeks ago.
The order, issued by Town Code Officer Richard Stokes on March 18, has been flagrantly ignored by Higley.

“We’re going to Supreme Court,” Higley said Monday.”We want the court to throw the stop work order out.”

Shandaken Ambulance chief calls for cell phone help

By Jay Braman Jr.
Cell phone service in the Town of Shandaken remains spotty but the head of the town’s ambulance service has a plan that he thinks will help solve the problem.

Well, at least for those tech savvy residents who are Verizon customers.
Shandaken Ambulance Squad Chief Richard Muellerleile spoke before the Shandaken Town Board Monday night, reminding all present that 2011 was indeed a busy one, not only for his department but for all of the emergency services.

New Shandaken Code Officer begins cleanup

By Jay Braman Jr.
“There’s a new code officer in town.”

That’s how Phoenicia resident Ritchie Stokes put it last week as backhoes and bulldozers began leveling a massive eyesore that has plagued the Oliverea Valley for two decades.

As the demolition project, on Deer Lane just a stone’s throw form the Cold Spring Lodge, moved forward, Stokes was straight faced and no nonsense when he said this was just the beginning.
“I’m taking care of Fox Hollow next,” he said, referring to the property at the entrance of that Shandaken hamlet.

OCS Board weighing tough money saving options

By Jay Braman Jr.
As parents in the Onteora School bombard the board of education with concerns over the impacts of school reconfiguration plans, the school board is working hard to show not only parents, but all that live in the district, that they are taking the matter seriously and proceeding with caution.

Following a recent school board meeting where over 75 people attended to hear details about plans, some of which include the closure of one of the three elementary schools, the school board drafted an open letter to the public.

Free Christmas dinner for Shandaken residents

Main Street, Phoenicia will open its doors on Christmas Day to welcome the citizens of Shandaken to a festive “Christmas Community Dinner.”

From 1 to 4 p.m. on Christmas Day (December 25), the Ricciardella family, owners of The Sportsman’s Cantina, and a staff of volunteers will prepare and serve a traditional holiday dinner free to all residents of Shandaken and the surrounding townships, who are needy or alone, are elderly or home-bound, have no where to go, or would just like to stop by and join their neighbors on Christmas Day.

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