Showing posts from March, 2009

Last Call for Tickets to Garrison Yacht Club Spring Dinner

Garrison Yacht Club will present The Eilen Jewell Band for its 2009 Spring Dinner. Details below: When: Sunday, April 5 Time: 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Where: Dutchess Manor -- 263 Rte. 9D, Beacon, NY Cost: $75 per person including full dinner and beverages and music. Checks should be made payable to Garrison Yacht Club and sent to P.O. Box 176, Garrison NY 10524 Tickets are available on first come, first serve basis until Sunday, March 29th. No tickets will be available at the door. Contact info: Sponsors: Polhemus Construction, Nick Roberti's Marine, Samalot Marine and Sea Tow Central Hudson . Photo by Jennifer Lucey-Brzoza @

A Note About Guinan's, "Profitability," and the Future of # 7 Garrison's Landing

Two interesting pieces in this week's Putnam County News & Recorder neatly capture the tenor of the ongoing push to have a public gathering space in the old Guinan's building. One, written by Michael Turton , does a nice job painting the scene of last week's lively Philipstown Planning Board meeting while a second by Joe Lindsley Jr. titled " A Brief History of the 'Little Chapel ,'" describes the long, rich tenure of this particular gathering spot along the Hudson. (You need a subscription to view these pieces in full.) Lindsley cites my book saying that Jim Guinan was determined to keep the place going even though the operation was losing money. It's true that at various points in time in its nearly 50-year history Guinan's struggled -- early on when Jim and his late wife Peg were launching the business, after Peg's death. However, as my book also notes, according to the family the store also was profitable during its long history

Possible Compromise for Old Guinan's Building?

At last night's Philipstown Planning Board meeting, a public hearing was held, which included discussion on the new site plan approval for the old Guinan's building at #7 Garrison's Landing. The architect for the Garrison Station Plaza, which owns the building, presented his drawings and elaborated a bit more on last month's proposal , adding that the GSP was considering investing in an energy efficient geothermal heating and cooling system for the property. (This technology uses heat generated from the earth versus fossil fuels.) Currently the plans are to convert the space into residences and an office. However, there was a robust appeal from the public at the meeting to include some sort of a public space (ie, cafe) in the new plans. The question also was raised about whether the Guinan's building qualifies as a "historic property," which could affect rules around its change of use and structural alterations. There was also discussion about whethe

New Cafe (& Martini Bar?) Coming at Old Garrison Market Site

Updated: Tonight I ran into Michael at Angelina's. He's leaving that business in the hands of his partner to run this new project at the old Garrison Market full-time. The atmosphere was a little sad in the restaurant, but Michael was upbeat about his new project and the food was outstanding at Angelina's, so maybe Philipstown will have the best of both worlds. Michael says he plans to unroll his vision for the new business in two stages. The first will be a market and cafe until 7 p.m. He says he is aiming to have tables, wireless access and serve wine and beer. But it won't be a full-fledged restaurant. He's planning to build a deck, and is debating whether to open at 5 a.m. or 6 a.m. Says he's a nighttime guy and the new routine will take some adjusting to for him. He'll be testing different brands of coffee next Mon. and Tues. in the store and wants folks to stop in. His Stage 2 involves taking the apartment area next door and converting it into a lat

Happy High Holy Day

This photo of the "high priest" himself, Jim Guinan , was taken on Guinan's Day 2005. We're lucky to have Jim back in the Hudson Valley for the High Holy Day 2009. He heads back home to his daughter Christine and son-in-law Mike 's in Florida soon after a good long visit with his daughter Margaret . Jim will be out and about in town tonight with some of the parishioners and his granddaughter Kelly ...maybe even singing Danny Boy. (Hint: somewhere on Main Street in Cold Spring) So shhhh..... All rights reserved on photo.

Thanks to the Mystery Snow Plower

I loved this random letter to the editor this week in the Putnam County News and Recorder . Solange Muller of Cold Spring wrote in thanks of a mystery snow plower who plowed Muller's driveway -- twice -- this winter unasked, unpaid. Wrote Muller: "Your gift of plowing my driveway this winter has been like a ray of sunshine making it's way through a dark cloud, bringing light and hope into my life and strengthening my believe that we are surrounded by goodness." It's remarkable how far a small gesture of unexpected kindness can reach.

Excerpts from Two Letters Regarding Fate of Old Guinan's Store

Two letters in support of preserving a portion of the old Guinan's store building as a public gathering spot, such as a cafe, appeared in our local paper the Putnam County News and Recorder this week. One letter from resident Mary Ellen Yannitelli , who made her own bid to open a cafe in the space, included the following: "Garrison Station Plaza Inc. has decided the ultimate use for the building at #7 Garrison's Landing, and it appears that they have disregarded the Town of Philipstown's goals in the Comprehensive Plan, and were uninfluenced by public pressure (we submitted a petition in support of a store with over 1,000 signatures.) Over 75% of the GSP corporate stock is owned by their not-for-profit sister company, the Garrison Landing Association. As a 501c3 company they receive public funds from both individuals and State and foundation grants. It is possible that if their decision about the use of the building at #7 Garrison's Landing favors what the majo

Local Artist and Curator Featured on Mother Nature Network

Chuck Leavell , keyboardist for the Rolling Stones and a founder of the new environmental Web site Mother Nature Network , talks to local art curator Amy Lipton and artist Simon Draper in the Carl Van Brunt Gallery in Beacon N.Y. Amy and Simon discuss their two projects -- ecoartspace and Habitat For Artists -- with Chuck. Cool projects with national reach; check them out.

Guinan Family Community Service Award--How to Contribute

Readers have asked how they can make a contribution in memory and thanks of Guinan's now that the store has closed. Through the Garrison Union Free School District , I established the Guinan Family Community Service Award in 2006 to honor the GUFS student who most strongly exhibits leadership by giving back to their community during the school year. The annual award, typically given out in June, is designed to encourage students to think the importance of service and community much in the same spirit as Jim & Peg Guinan and their children and grandchildren did while running Guinan's Pub & Country store for nearly 50 years. Each student selected receives $100 as thanks and acknowledgment for their contributions. A member of the Guinan family has been present each year to help present the award. While the award is funded in perpetuity, additional donations would help expand the gift to more than one deserving student. If interested, checks can be made out to GUFS wi

Public Hearing on Change of Use for Former Guinan's building

Host: Town of Philipstown Date: Thursday, March 19, 2009 Time: 7:30pm - 10:30pm Location: VFW Hall Street: Kemble Ave. City/Town: Cold Spring, NY Facebook Event Link The Garrison Station Plaza Inc.(building owners) submitted plans to the town to change the use of #7 Garrison's Landing from a store and residence to offices and a residence. Is this a good use for this historic property? Should/could the building accomodate a small gathering spot for the public as well as offices and a residence? This event is a public hearing where you can share your thoughts. View Larger Map

Ned Sullivan of Scenic Hudson on the Mother Nature Network

The Hudson Valley's own Ned Sullivan of Scenic Hudson talks with Chuck Leavell of the Mother Nature Network (and Rolling Stones keyboardist) about smart growth, brownfields and conservation easements in the Hudson River Valley.