J. McLaughlin reported an excellent opening week, indicating the wisdom of its decision to move into the village. With J. McLaughlin, Citrus, Punch, the Pumpkin House, Joyce Heaton Jewelers, Millbrook Floral Design, and our antiques stores and beauty shops, it should be easy to find a gift that any mother would like and any pocket can afford—right here in town.      Retailers are not the only businesses reporting increased activity. Robert Campbell of Millbrook Cabinetry & Design and Al DeBonis of Wood Advisory Services both report that business has picked up. With first quarter showing an increase of 2.5 percent, could the recession finally be over?      The Millbrook Pharmacy opens Wednesday but will hold its grand opening on Saturday from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. The pharmacy will be offering free heath checkups and serving free refreshments. It is an opportunity to meet the new pharmacists and the owners.

Since a residence hall was built at Dutchess Community College (DCC) in 2011 and started housing students for the 2012–13 school year, the college has seen an increase in crime, which has caught the attention of the Dutchess County legislature. A year into the construction, a change-order form signed by DCC treasurer W. John Dunn directly states furnishing and installing “an upsized sanitary lift station to accommodate a second future similarly sized building” to the planned project for the residence hall dated July 13, 2011.


When DCC president David Conklin and spokesperson Judi Stokes were contacted about plans for more dorms, Stokes said there are no plans to build another residence hall. 


Emma Lomangino and Ryan Waters were named Millbrook High’s valedictorian and salutatorian respectively for the 2013 graduating seniors. 


Emma and Ryan placed first and second in their grade in overall g.p.a. (grade point average). They had the highest grades while taking a full course load of AP (advanced placement) and college level courses.  Their g.p.a. is cumulative based on their four years of high school.  


Emma and Ryan said they knew early they were the probable choices for top academic honors. They  agreed it was a nice moment.  In addition to giving speeches at graduation, the two will deliver  speeches at the Memorial Day celebrations at the Tribute Garden.


Ben Yager, a freshman, and Evie Grainger, a junior, both of Millbrook High, took home awards from the Dutchess County Science Fair, held at Dutchess Community College on April 6. 


Yager received second place in the ninth-grade division, beating out students from schools across Dutchess County for his “Piping for Geothermal Energy” project.  He also received ten other special awards for the project, including awards from the U.S. Army, the Mid-Hudson Computer Users group and the Environmental Defense Award. Yager said other participants received multiple awards as well, but he thought he probably had the highest number of awards of those who participated. 


The Federal Government’s Sequestration has dealt a severe blow to Millbrook’s poorest families.   Millbrook’s largest preschool was just informed that, effective immediately, all of its Headstart children were losing 100% of their preschool funding.  Headstart instructed their Millbrook affiliate, MECEC, to terminate the children’s enrollment in April leaving them unable to complete their school year. The emotional impact and the disruption in the daily routine for the children and families could be catastrophic.  The board at MECEC is urgently trying to raise $50,000 to secure the funds to keep these children in school through the end of the school year and to fill the Headstart financial hole which has been created for the coming school year.   

Seventy members of the Millbrook High School Concert and Jazz bands went to Annapolis, Maryland last weekend to compete in the Heritage Music Festival.

Almost ten groups from four or five schools entered the competition. Each group was required to play for three judges who gave them grades out of 100 to determine which group won gold, silver or bronze. Both Millbrook bands won gold, which meant their average of the three judges’ scores was 85 or higher. In addition both bands won first place.

Millbrook also received an award for outstanding concert band regardless of division, which they won against larger schools. They also received the highest score for jazz band. Finally, they received the special sweepstakes award for their instrumental program, the highest score for two or more groups. Millbrook’s two bands were also named the outstanding instrumental groups at the festival. 

Solo awards went to Annie Whalen for her flute solo and to Mike McGuckin for his guitar solo.

356 Seniors Isabelle Hurley and Annie Whalen. Annie received one of the individual awards for her flute solo

A visiting scientist at Cary, Lynn Christensen, provided the following report 

On Saturday, April 20 a moose was seen around Millbrook, first on Little Rest Road and later on Thorndale. Jonathan Thorne said the animal crossed Route 44 heading south. Tuesday afternoon he was spotted on Route 55 near the Arlington High School. 

According to Lynn Christensen, a visiting scientist at Cary, “this looks like a young moose, probably last years calf. Moose calves usually stay with their mothers until the next calf is born, usually in late May or early June, so this is either a young calf that lost its mom, or it is an older, almost 2 year old that has struck out on its own. 

While there have been indications of progress in negotiations between the Bank of Millbrook and the Pine Plains Town Board, the Pine Plains Library has been planning  to move out of its now foreclosed library building back into its old space at the McGhee Building on Main Street.

The town has been renovating the old library, putting in a new ceiling and lighting, caulking, and painting. The biggest undertaking has been the installation of a new, Americans with Disabilities Act–compliant bathroom. 

Since the McGhee Building cannot accommodate the whole book collection, much less all of the computers and library furniture, decisions will have to be made about what to move back to the old library, what to store, and what to discard. 

If the move takes place, the town will assume the moving costs. The library has arranged to rent storage space on North Main Street.  Books stored there will be available to library patrons on request, within a day or two. 


The idea is to  “think locally” and outside of the box.  Put together capital projects, collaborate with other businesses and non-profits, create a regional plan.  The other concept is to have a community-based, bottoms up approach.

A training session to help Dutchess County businesses, non-profits and municipalities apply for major funding for everything from infrastructure to property acquisition, and green –friendly organizational structure took place at Crown Maple Modava Farm Monday, April 22.  In 2012, $92 million was awarded to a range of projects in Dutchess County. 

In 2012 Governor Cuomo created ten regional economic development councils to develop long-term strategic plans for economic growth in their regions.  “A key component of Governor Cuomo’s approach to economic development, these councils are public-private partnerships made up of local experts and stakeholders from business, academia, local, government and non-governmental organizations” says the REDC website (

This is the week that the “Shoppers Love Millbrook” brochure has begun to appear on counters and in card racks all over town. It presents the unique shopping experience offered by our retailers—antique shops, art galleries and boutiques. Five thousand copies were printed and will be distributed throughout Dutchess County and in western Connecticut, and the brochure is featured on both the Dutchess County Tourism website and the Millbrook Business Association website. Ads will appear in the Dutchess County Tourism Guide, TMI Summer Guide, and Rotary Business Directory.   Promotion of Millbrook as a shopping destination has been a major effort on the part of the Millbrook Business Association, which boasts nine new members this quarter, including: Arch River Farm, Belvoir Gallery, Citrus, Dr. Robert Strange, J. McLaughlin, Millbrook Floral Design, Millbrook Pharmacy and Wes’ Autobody Works.  
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