IS The Hudson Valley the next Williamsburg? 

Hipsters want to be into The Next Hip Thing before anyone else finds out about it. Because when everyone else finds out about it—well, it isn’t hip anymore. Journalists share this hipster quality (especially if they work for Vice). Part of their job, after all, is to be good at predicting trends, to be aware…

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The Chillest Spot in Ulster County

As was the case with the Massive Caves, The Chillest Spot in Ulster County is too precious a secret to let loose. Therefore, a series of short video clues that will lead the discerning viewer to the spot have been provided below. It will take some digging, as well as a decent amount of local…

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The Saviors of Catskill Animal Sanctuary

Rob Robinson, long hair wedged against his head with a faded blue cap, walked up to McWilliams with his arms spread wide. The hug was vigorous enough to make the lens of the glasses tucked into McWilliams’ collar to pop out between their chests like a banana being squeezed out of its peel. “Sorry about…

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DIY Sculptures at the Shawnagunks Rock Gardens

  The Shawangunks Rock Gardens are a fantastic concept—a regenerating, infinite, open-source art project set on a bald peak of the Shawangunk Ridge in Kerhonkson.     Every summer, gaggles of locals wander up to the Gardens and create. Some of the statues have been enormous—a few summers ago, I saw a 10-foot Tyrannosaurus composed…

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Defending Street Art

Bleary-eyed, I shuffled up Main Street in New Paltz to grab my morning java. Despite housing a coffee before setting out, my blood had not yet reached its required caffeine percentage, so I may have acted more irately than usually when I came across the trio in orange safety vests. What…what are they DOING?…was my…

Raging Mysteryland: Woodstock for Millenials

The security for music festivals is always more for show. The polo-shirted guards at the entrance of Mysteryland were ostensibly there to enforce the “Zero Tolerance” policy set forth on Mysteryland’s website, which reads: “It is forbidden to use, distribute, sell and/or to be in possession of drugs on the festival grounds and campsite. Violators…

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Kingston’s Cement Graveyard

The Cement Graveyard is located in East Kingston, which is a bit of a misnomer, since East Kingston is actually North of central Kingston. It’s also a but of a misnomer to say the Cement Graveyard is ‘in’ East Kingston, since the Cement Graveyard isn’t ‘in’ anywhere but the woods. I parked on Railroad Avenue…

The Most Quality Shack in Ulster County

Ryan and his two friends had already disappeared into the woods by the time I managed to lug the tripod out of my car’s trunk. When I caught up, Ryan apologized. “Sorry, that guy was eyeballin us…wanted to get out of there as soon as possible.” “Where was he?” “Across the road, just staring at…

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Massive Caves in The Hudson Valley

    I have expressed that some of the places I write about are secretive — locals have discovered and cherished these spots, and have expressed unease at me revealing their locations to any yahoo with a WiFi connection. I’ve wanted to share these places, but, being a local myself, I want to preserve their obscurity.…

The Fountain of Youth in Kerhonkson

People from New York City love to brag about their water. Several times I have been in the middle of complimenting some sort of city-food, and the city-dweller feels compelled to drag water into it. “It’s because of our water, you know,” they’ll say, leaning casually against a sink while examining their nails. “Best in…

The Gravity Junkies of Gardiner’s ‘Skydive the Ranch’

My car swirled early-spring dust as I pulled into Skydive the Ranch’s unpaved lot. The Ranch is surprisingly close to Gardiner’s town center for a place that is constantly launching planes. The layout mostly consists of a single building—an airplane hanger/equipment hub/chillage center that looms by the side of a giant plain. All the instructors I met…

Dubstep & Cleavage: Cabaloosa’s of New Paltz

The rain slammed down so miserably hard on the club’s back porch that all the people doing drugs had to crush themselves against the wall to protect their inebriants. Pints were tossed back, whiskey-drinks were inhaled greedily through straws, stoags flared up as they were lit, joints and one-hitters got passed to whomever held out…