All Tied Up In Knots

Half-hitchesOn Saturday, August 10th, adventurers of all ages will have a chance to gain knot-tying skills when Morgan Outdoors hosts two Knots for Hiking and Camping classes. Bringing a lifeless rope to life is not only fun, it’s useful in everything from jewelry-making to rescuing people. The hour-long children’s class runs from 12:00 – 1:00pm and is geared for kids age 9 and up. They will learn several of the key knots useful in camping and hiking, from making a loop to a taut-line hitch. The class for adults runs from 10:30 – 11:45am and will cover additional knots useful in everyday life, like the trucker’s hitch that is great for cinching down loads on top of a car. Instructor Mick Wheaton is a graduate of SUNY ESF, working in forestry management, and a former counselor at DeBruce Conservation Camp in Livingston Manor. All materials are provided and pre-payment is required to reserve a place, as the class size is limited to 10. The children’s class is $8 per person and the adult class is $12.

RSVP to reserve a place by calling Lisa at 845-439-5507. Pre-registration is easy: in person with check or cash; over the phone with a credit card. This is the final Outdoor Skills class of the summer. Morgan Outdoors is located at 46 Main Street, Livingston Manor (air conditioned!)


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Say Hi to ‘Hello Bistro’ in The TH-Record

Seven months after shutting down their venerable Flour Power Bakery, Denise and J.R. Rowley have opened a new bistro in the same Livingston Manor location.

By Leonard Sparks
Times Herald-Record
Published: 07/31/13


LIVINGSTON MANOR — Denise and J.R. Rowley indulged themselves with much-needed down time after they decided to close their popular Flour Power Bakery in January.

They visited family.

They rested.

Then they grew restless.

Now seven months later the couple has opened Hello Bistro, a 50-seat restaurant carved out of the same converted house on DeBruce Road where they operated the bakery for five years.

Hoping for a repeat

The bakery had been a gathering spot for local foodies, and the Rowleys are hoping for the same from the bistro. So far it appears their hopes may be realized. Friday’s opening day was booked, as was Saturday, Denise Rowley said.

“We just like to feed people,” Denise Rowley said Friday afternoon as the apron-clad couple hurried to get ready for a 5 p.m. opening. “Something about it makes us happy.”

Exhausting schedule

The Rowleys, who both have backgrounds in advertising, opened Flour Power about seven years ago, after deciding the area needed a bakery more than a restaurant.

They moved into a retrofitted white house overlooking the hills enveloping Livingston Manor five years ago. The year-round bakery, with its large porch, became a destination, and the Rowleys omnipresent at area farmers markets.

But both wearied of the challenge of surviving the county’s dead winter months and of the physical demands of running a bakery while also driving from market to market.

“It was exhausting,” Denise Rowley said. “There was a lot of rushing to get to market on time.” The decision to open a bistro meant renovating. One wall was removed to open up the dining room, and the Rowleys bought new furniture. J.R. Rowley did most of the woodwork, and the couple added new fixtures, trim and paint.

Why a bistro?

“A bistro is casual,” J.R. Rowley said. “It’s a very friendly atmosphere; people talk to each other.”

A bit of everything

Hello Bistro’s menu will feature “a little bit of everything,” J.R. Rowley said. Diners will be able to enjoy dishes ranging from American and French entrees to hamburgers.

The opening weekend menu included such fare as Asian pork tenderloin, pan-seared scallops, caramelized shallots and crème brulee. The menu will vary by season and will depend in part on what local farmers have available.

Upstairs, the Rowleys will continue to host book and poetry readings and display works by local artists. Downstairs, the rush to fill and deliver diners’ orders promises a special reward:

“The smile on their faces when they eat something really good,” Denise Rowley said.

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2nd Annual ArtWalk ChalkWalk

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About the Trailkeeper Project


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Meet Children’s Book Creator at Library July 6


It’s All Part of Artwalk Chalkwalk on Saturday

Lindsay Barrett George, children’s picture book author and illustrator, will be the featured guest at the Livingston Manor Library during Artwalk Chalkwalk, the annual street celebration of art in Livingston Manor, taking place on Saturday, July 6 on Livingston Manor’s Main Street.
Children of all ages are welcome to storytime with Lindsay Barrett George from 12:30 to 1:00. Many people will recall Lindsay’s books including Beaver at Long Pond (1988). Her newest picture books include Alfred Digs, Maggie’s Ball and That Pup. To learn more about Lindsay Barrett George, go to
The library is located at 92 Main Street across from the firehouse. For more information call 439-5440.

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Learn Old School Skills: Read Maps, Use a Compass

Old School Skills Are Focus of Saturday Session

Livingston Manor, NY   — Saturday, July 13, at 10:30 AM   Reconnect with a
skill set that is rapidly disappearing. Morgan Outdoors is hosting a
90-minute course in Reading Map & Compass for adults. Learn how to
interpret a topographic map, to better understand the lay of the land, and
use of a compass for navigation. These simple, increasingly forgotten
skills are practical to know and help us reconnect with a world often
overlooked in busy lives.

Register at Morgan Outdoors by calling Lisa at. 845 439 5507. The course
fee is $12 for 90 minutes of indoor and outdoor fun!  Class size limited
to 10. First come, first served.
Morgan Outdoors is at 46 Main Street in Livingston Manor, NY

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Bug Music Scheduled for Saturday, June 29th Postponed

Due to embugmusicergency circumstances, the book reading/musical performance of David Rothenberg’s “Bug Music” originally scheduled for this Saturday, June 29 has been postponed to a date TBD.

I understand that the vast majority of you are not able to post a correction in this short time, but I wanted to keep everyone informed to the furthest extent possible. Any help in spreading the word via you social media and blogs would be much appreciated. Please contact me with any questions.

Again, thank you very much for your attention and time.

Thank you,

Bradley Diuguid
Executive Director
Catskill Art Society
48 Main Street, PO Box 991
Livingston Manor, NY 12758
845-436-4227 |

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Livingston Manor ArtWalk / ChalkWalk July 6th


On July 6, 2013 (raindate 7/7), 10am to 4pm, Livingston Manor’s ArtWalk/ChalkWalk will be back with over 25 artists, with works ranging from watercolor, acrylics and oils to mixed media and photography and this year, we’ll have artisans with crafts on display as well!

Keeping ahead of the weather, you’ll see tents from WaterWheel Junction, Pearl Street and Renaissance Park, with more art on display at the following locations:
Wildlife Gift has watercolorist Bob Lee, Plunk has Claire Coleman’s own exhibit along with the Outsider’s Studio and Catskill Art Society has its Member’s Show plus a demonstrating potter, Jesse Spaethe.

RM Farm Realty will host the work of James Karpowicz, LM Library will display illustrations by Lindsay George and the Ambulance Corps will have Ramona Jan’s puppetry at 12:30 and 1:30 PM.
Jeff Bank will have two photographers stationed outside, Stephen Davis and James Carney, and Rafael Weinstein will also be demonstrating his art alfresco, as many of our other artists will.

Foodies can enjoy our local fare and our community-sponsored barbecues and goodies along the way. And to keep visitors on track, maps will be handed out and posted in store windows alongside artwork from our participating artists.

But wait, there’s more! ChalkWalk will return for kids who want to become a
“Livingston Manor Artist for the Day” with certificates for all and selected creations to be shown in our YouTube 2013 Artwalk/ChalkWalk video.

Finish your Fourth with a real outing and join us for a fun day!


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Now at the Catskill Art Society

CAS Summer Members Show
Now Through July 14

Above image: Exodus, oil on canvas by Tank-A Gabriliants, CAS member artist.

Above image: Exodus, oil on canvas by Tank-A Gabriliants, CAS member artist.

The Catskill Art Society will present its fourth annual Summer Members Show, an exhibition of work by CAS member artists. Celebrating the summer and its importance in our lives, themes of nature’s power, bounty, and growth shine through this year’s show. All artwork is available for sale, with proceeds benefiting the artists and the nonprofit CAS Arts Center.

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Nature Calls
Inexpensive homes and country bliss

  • By TINA TRASTER, New York Post
  • Posted: 10:50 PM, June 19, 2013

Unless you stumble upon Livingston Manor in mid-June during its annual Trout Parade, it’s hard to grasp what this otherwise sleepy town in northern Sullivan County is all about. But a Main Street sign “SMALL TOWN — BIG BACKYARD” best explains why this little spot, two hours northwest of Manhattan, is a big draw for nature-loving second-home owners.

Livingston Manor, or “the Manor,” as locals call it, is the birthplace of American fly-fishing. The hamlet in the Town of Rockland, population 1,200, has two world-class fishing spots — the Beaverkill River and the Willowemoc Creek. And it’s next door to Roscoe, known as Trout Town, USA.

MIND YOUR MANOR: Livingston Manor, two hours away from NYC in Sullivan County, is where you’ll find the covered Van Tran Flat Bridge and serious trout fishing.

MIND YOUR MANOR: Livingston Manor, two hours away from NYC in Sullivan County,
is where you’ll find the covered Van Tran Flat Bridge and serious trout fishing.

MIND YOUR MANOR: Livingston Manor, two hours away from NYC in Sullivan County, is where you’ll find the covered Van Tran Flat Bridge and serious trout fishing.

A second-home seeker can net a Livingston Manor fixer-upper for less than $100,000. Ten miles north in Lew Beach, a private enclave of more than 70 homes developed by Larry Rockefeller, $1 million buys a multi-acre spread, private fishing access to the Beaverkill River and clubhouse amenities.

Jennifer Grossman, an environmentalist from the West Village, recently purchased a 4,000-square-foot, three-story, 1910 former fishing lodge with eight bedrooms for under $100,000 in Livingston Manor.

“There’s nothing like standing in the river, early in the morning, feeling the pressure of the water, listening and smelling the river, being present,” says Grossman, who fly-fishes. “And if you get that tug on the end of the line and you feel connected to that wild creature, it’s an incredible way to start the day.”

The Manor, situated at the doorstep of Catskill Park, off Route 17, is the kind of town where you can find gun ammo and bait and tackle at the Fur, Fin and Feather Sport Shop on DeBruce Road. And local, organic produce, milk, eggs, American farmstead cheese, fresh-baked goods, meadow-raised meats, fresh Beaverkill trout, and honey and maple syrup at the Main Street Farm Market & Cafe.

The story of the Manor is the story of many of Catskill towns. Early white settlers destroyed first-growth hemlock trees and polluted rivers with tanning in the 19th century. The railroad brought a crop of inns and hotels that catered to wilting urbanites in search of a big backyard. By the mid-20th century, the Borscht Belt area fell into decline. For a couple of decades, it relied on a long-gone chicken-plucking factory as its main economic engine.

Since the 1980s, artists and members of the gay and lesbian community have flocked to Livingston Manor for unbeatable real estate deals, places to work and play and a spirit of inclusion. Over the past decade, the hamlet has rallied and suffered. Some gentrification has stuck; many stores, including an independent bookstore, didn’t survive. An investor who had grandiose plans to build a luxury hotel and spa went belly up in the crash. The Manor’s Main Street retailers have been hit by epic flooding in recent years, which the town is working to mitigate, and last November, a fire claimed the historic Hoos building, which housed the popular Lazy Beagle Cafe and three other businesses.

Local broker Judy Van Put says demand for second homes is robust and prices are still 25 percent off the 2007 peak. You can buy a three-bedroom cottage with one bathroom on 1.3 acres of land for $110,000, or a four-bedroom, 2 1/2-bathroom Ranch, near the historic Van Tran Flat Bridge, with access to good trout fishing on the Willowemoc Creek, for $199,000. The more privileged can reel in a three-bedroom, 2 1/2-bathroom, post-and-beam on 20 acres, with 6 miles of private fishing access and membership in the Beaverkill Stream and Mountain Club, for $895,000.

The Manor and surrounding small towns are devoid of chains and fast-food joints. Main Street sticks to what small towns do best: There’s the Robin Hood Diner, Pronto Pizza, Cafe 43 and Peck’s Market. Morgan Outdoors is a big lure for sportsmen. There are a smattering of mom-and-pops like Willow and Brown, Mountain Bear Crafts and other galleries and gift shops for those who appreciate local offerings. Will Hardware is a mainstay, and Manor Pharmacy is opening this summer. Big-box stores and major supermarkets can be found 15 minutes north on Route 17, in Liberty.

The Catskill Arts Society, which occupies a 4,000-square-foot building on Main Street, has a gallery, event space, a digital arts lab, and it offers classes. Every August, the Shandelee Music Festival’s Summer Sunset Concert Series draws big names in chamber music, and Bethel Woods Center for the Arts is 25 minutes away.

Ramsay Adams, director of Catskill Mountainkeeper and a Lew Beach resident, is one of three developers behind the soon-to-open Catskill Brewery on Old Route 17, which will manufacture high-end craft beer and have a tasting room.

Adams says the Manor has had its ups and downs, but “the resilience of this community is deep-rooted because this is where fly-fishing began, and it’s as important to the American psyche as baseball and hot dogs.”

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