The Trials & Tribulations of a Hudson Valley Artist

Audrey Brand delicately curves her paintbrush along the looping grain of the wood as a trio of European women pause on their way through Gardiner Liquid Mercantile in Ulster County. Brand greets them, stepping back from her easel as they apologize for interrupting her work. “No, you’re supposed to watch,”  she says. “You can have…

(Semi) Sober at the Hudson River Craft Beer Fest

“I won’t be driving to Wappingers Falls later — I’m gonna be schwasted.” The 20-something white dude wearing a baseball cap toed forward in the line entering the Hudson River Craft Beer Fest while pontificating about the various brews he would drink and how each brew would get him further schwasted. Although it was ten…

Antonio Delgado Rap

Delgado Bashes Faso’s Record at Town Hall

Antonio Delgado repeatedly attacked Congressman John Faso’s record to thunderous applause at a town hall event held in Cairo, Greene County Friday night. The democratic nominee flayed Faso, the Republican he is trying to unseat, for his vote to overturn Obamacare, and said Faso was not fulfilling his responsibilities as a congressman, calling him “dishonest”…

The Evil of Lawns – A Day in TOHV

There are few things I hate in this world, but one of them is lawns. Not necessarily YOUR lawn. I respect the American ideal of property rights, and therefore believe you have the legal precedent to do whatever goddamn stupid thing you want to do with your lawn. You all seem to have the same…

Faso Debate

Faso Twice Declined to Debate Delgado 1-on-1

Rep. John Faso has twice declined to debate democratic candidate Antonio Delgado because Green Party candidate Steve Greenfield would not be included in the debates. Faso, a first-term Republican congressman, is defending his seat from Delgado in a tight race to see who will represent the northern Hudson Valley and Catskills. Steve Greenfield has not…

Destroying Cars at the Columbia County Fair

I was desperately trying to snap photos from the sidelines of the Columbia County Fair Demolition Derby when a giant “OOoohh!” rippled across the crowd, a contradictory noise of concern and excitement delivered en masse by thousands of rapt spectators. “What happened?” My girlfriend pointed to the other side of the rectangular track. One of…

‘New York’s Mount Rushmore’ in the Catskills

Prattsville, a small town straddling the Schoharie Creek in northwestern Greene County, is home to Pratt’s Rock, a site once called “New York’s Mount Rushmore” by Ripley’s Believe It or Not. It was here the town’s founder and namesake, Zadock Pratt, employed a series of itinerant stonemasons to carve his life story in a cliff…

Climbing Twin Mountain in the Catskills

Twin Mountain, one of the Catskills’ 35 peaks over 3500 feet, squats between Indian Head Mountain and Sugarloaf Mountain down a road closed during the winter months. Thankfully, it was August, so I did not have to walk an additional five miles to access the trailhead off Dale Lane. It was to be a solitary…

The Joys of Destructive Weather – A Day in TOHV

We had some cracking good weather in Columbia County this week, which is another way of saying we had very bad weather. Call me a masochist, but I might have a perverse love of destructive weather events. I had to add “might” in there because the claim seems like the famous last words uttered 20…

Digging for Artifacts on America’s Oldest Street

Joe Diamond receives a small shard of blue and white from one of his undergraduate students and flips it over in his dirt-creased hand, rubbing it with his thumb to remove the centuries-old soil. “Majolica, 17th century,” he says with the unassailable confidence of an art appraiser showing a piece. “This stuff is like 1630…

Mayor Vetoes Law Leveling Fees on Owners of Hudson Vacants

Hudson Mayor Rick Rector vetoed a proposed law Thursday that would have imposed fees on the owners of vacant properties. The law, which was passed by the city’s Common Council July 17, was meant to address dilapidated properties and properties that were being “warehoused” — purposefully kept unoccupied — by their owners in the city,…

Exxxtreme Badminton – A Day in TOHV

I’m not sure if you’ve ever played badminton, but it doesn’t matter, because you’ve been playing it all wrong. See, you’ve been playing it as a lawn game, like croquet or…I dunno, tanning. MY crew, we play it Columbia County-style. We play it as a sport. My crew lays their heads in the sparsely populated…