On Friday June,7 from 1:00 – 5:00 p.m. the eleven students who participated this summer in the Cary Institute’s Annual Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) will present the results of their summer research projects. Funded by the National Science Foundation, the Institute's REU program attracts students from all over the country. 

Working with an institute scientist, students designed their project, carried out research, and analyzed data. This summer, projects have included the explorations of urbanization and vectors of human disease, microbial processes in urban ecosystems, effects of pharmaceutical and personal care products on aquatic ecosystems, the Hudson River and climate change, songbird behavioral ecology, and climate change effects on different mosquito species and natural controls.  


August 1, 2015

The store at the corner of Franklin Avenue and Front Street opened its doors Saturday to a collection of curious villagers seeing the glorious alpaca fabrics and clothes of Alicia Adams perhaps for the first time. They also saw comfortable looking beds with exotic headboards, brightly colored block printed sheets, pillows, quilts and fabrics designed by John Robshaw of John Robshaw Textiles who is taking a portion of the space.  The upscale transformation is now complete. Franklin Avenue has become a shopping destination. 

1090 John Robshaw with some of his designs - photo by Carola Lott

For the first time Alicia Adams has the space to show her complete line to local customers.  She had been operating in tight quarters at her home farm and in temporary spaces that were more for shipping and management than for retail sales.  While her line is in stores from Maine to Florida, they don’t carry the full line, that now includes robes and the most silken, furry toy alpacas ever made.  They are sure to be Christmas favorites.  

1092 Alegra Adams loves the softness of Alpaca fleece - photo by Carola Lott



July 29, 2015 -  The Amenia Planning Board passed five resolutions, all drafted by the lawyers, approving the construction of the Silo Ridge Field Club very much in the form set forth in the developer’s application with, however, many conditions. 

Whether the holder of the conservation easement, required under the town’s zoning law, will be the Dutchess Land Conservancy (DLC) remains an open question.  The DLC, the town and the developer are in negotiations on several points, one of which is the removal of the restaurant from the hairpin turn which the DLC is considers important in order to protect the viewshed.  The town’s attorneys proposed a generic easement; the possibility of the town holding the easement was mentioned.  The deadline for approving the development was July 30th.

July 24, 2015 - A gathering of local celebrities, leading thespians, and literary giants were on hand to attend the March Hare’s tea party to which Alice had not been invited but she showed up as confused as the rest of us.  It was said to have happened on July 24 at 10:30 a.m. precisely. 

It was in part a celebration of Scott Meyer and the tradition of book related events that he initiated and for many years hosted in the upper room of the Merritt Bookstore.  The host today was Moby Mudge, author of a book on the sculpture of Central Park of which Alice figures as a main subject. (the Delacorte Memorial and a fountain honoring Sophie Irene Loeb, a noted civil leader of the 1930's).

The March Hare was played by David Greenwood, the dormouse by Fred Whitridge,  and the Mad Hatter by John Reid.  Alice was played by Barbara Rankin and the narrator was Anne Gillis.  

In truth, the meaning of mad was not determined, but they all had a mad time as did the gathered celebrities including those 7? and under.

July 24, 2015 - The draft Findings Statement is now posted on the Amenia website:

On July 22, one of the last meetings before the expected approval of the Silo Ridge project by the Amenia Planning Board, David Everett, the attorney for the board, said “We need to adopt this Findings Statement and have a conversation about it before the final SEQR decision.”

The Amenia Planning Board will hold special meetings on July 29 and 30 at  7 p.m.  to consider the findings statement and other open questions relating to the Silo Ridge applicatiion. 

Resolutions for the special permit for the wastewater, the subdivision plat, the Master Development Plan for the whole project will be voted on.   Everett siad “There will be ongoing conditions, but what we are approving is one overall project.”

Planner Marianne Johnson, Dr. Michael Klemens and engineer Julie Mangarillo were on hand to discuss their ‘red line’ comments on the Findings Statement.

July 24, 2015- After a delay of almost two years Olivet has renewed its stated goal of creating a university campus on the abandoned Harlem Valley Psych Center in Wingdale.   According to the original statements made when they first purchased the campus from the Dover Knolls developer, the campus will serve a mostly Korean student body. 

The concept plan was unveiled at a July 22 meeting at the Dover Town Hall showing how the abandoned Harlem Vallery Psych Center will be converted to a campus with 2500 students.  A site plan application has not been submitted.  Olivet expects to file it in August.  

July 23- The Wassaic Project Summer Festival is fast approaching.  In less than one week  trains will be packed with Brooklyn hipsters, creative families and ordinary New Yorkers escaping the city to experience the magic of Wassaic. 

The Summer Festival July 31- Aug 2 is the Wassaic Project’s crowning celebration where the artist community opens up their hamlet for a free weekend of art, music, dance and film. In addition to the summer exhibition “Deep End” that shows work by 65 artists in the Maxon Mill, visitors will be offered a long weekend of music, dance and film.  

The musical line up is one of the most highly anticipated aspects of the festival. Every year Wassaic project music directors Scott Anderson and Tim Love Lee curate a playlist of musical performances that shape the vibe of the festival experience. 

This year’s headlining bands include Brooklyn based indie dance band Rubblebucket who will perform Friday. 

Over 270 riders, more than ever before, completed the dressage, cross country and stadium phases of Fitch’s Corner event. Despite the hot muggy weather the weekend went smoothly thanks to the always impeccable planning by hosts Fernanda Kellogg and Kirk Henckels.   The winners, both local and overall are reported on our sports page.  For a photo essay on the weekend, both behind the scenes as well as on the course, check the gallery on our website later this week.  


July 20, 2015- Andy Durbridge of South Amenia submitted this letter to the Amenia Town Supervisor, Victoria Perotti, on July 16, regarding the continuing work and cost to the Town of Amenia of extra work on the Amenia landfill which had been a Superfund Site.  

Background:  The Amenia Landfill was found to contain hazardous materials that were illegally dumped by unscrupulous haulers in the 1950’s,‘60’s and ‘70’s.  The site was declared a “Hazardous Waste Site” in 1992. It took several years for government lawyers to put together a list of responsible parties who would be charged with contributing to the cost of the clean-up, and more years to reach an agreement as to how much each party would contribute.   Work began in 2012 and continued until 2014 when it should have been completed.  The  contractors (Sevenson Environmental Services) , the engineers (CT Male)  and the DEC said the work was complete in 2014, but rains created gullies and washouts and corrective work was necessary.  This work has dragged on for more than a year.     

After a long and courageous battle with cancer, Scott Meyer died peacefully at The Kent, CT the morning of July 19th. He was an important part of the Millbrook community both at his Merritt Bookstore for the past 32 years, and as a member of many local organizations. A memorial service will be scheduled in the weeks ahead.



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