CASINO FEVER HAS HIT THE CATSKILL’S…. AGAIN!


 Foxwoods Catskills Resort Casino

A sports complex, an equestrian center and a 7,500-square-foot spa. A 400-room hotel and town houses. Twenty-seven holes of golf and a lake side marina.

And a casino, too. All in rustic, woodsy buildings designed by the firm behind such casinos as the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas and Harrah’s in Atlantic City.

This is the more than $400 million Foxwoods Catskills Resort Casino proposed for the 1,200 acres of land on and adjacent to the old Grossinger’s resort site.

The team behind the casino — Connecticut’s Foxwoods casino and New York City’s Muss Development — introduced a “sketch plan” of their project Monday night before a supportive crowd of more than 200 at Liberty High School. It’s a project, said Muss’ Chief Operating Officer Jeff Kay and Foxwoods Catskills Resort President Sal Semola, that’s designed to fit in with the woodsy, Catskill mountaintop setting that drew thousands to Grossinger’s during the region’s heyday.

“This is first and foremost a resort,” Semola said. “It just happens to be a casino.”

If Monday’s crowd is any indication, the project enjoys plenty of local support — especially from the electrical union workers who packed the crowd.

“I’ve seen projects done by Muss in the city and they’re fabulous,” said longtime Liberty resident and decades-long supporter of the elusive Sullivan County casino, Evan Bloom. “I actually think this could happen. The players are for real.”

Still, the project faces stiff competition — and lengthy state and local reviews — before it can become reality.

The Foxwoods Catskills Resort Casino is one of at least six contenders for the up to two Catskill casinos allowed by state law. A total of four upstate casinos will be chosen in three regions — the Capital/Saratoga region, the Southern Tier and the Catskills/Hudson Valley, with one region, receiving two. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has said the selections will be made in the fall.

One of the other contenders for a Catskill casino is developer Louis Cappelli’s slice of the old Concord resort. Cappelli, who also owns the original Grossinger’s property, just signed an agreement with Foxwoods and Muss that allows the Foxwoods Catskill Resort Casino to use the Grossinger’s entrance and its golf course. Muss owns the 600 acres adjacent to the crumbling hotel, which will be demolished.

Cappelli, who’s been trying to build a casino at his Concord resort property near Monticello for more than a decade, will not try to build one at Grossinger’s.

The proposal

Exterior rendering

Vicinity of resort casino property

Development of resort casino rendering

Conference center / first floor rendering

Conference center / second floor rendering

Conference center / Existing site

Conference center / Proposed site

AND YET ANOTHER SHAKES THE DICE

MAMAKATING — Add a new contender — with a familiar name and location — to the competition for a Catskill casino.

Rochester developer David Flaum wants to transform his Shawanga Lodge property in Mamakating into one of the up to two non-Indian casinos allowed in the Catskills.

The project is listed on Tuesday night’s work session for the Mamakating Town Board. Flaum declined to describe any details of it until then.

“Out of respect for the community, I’ll have no comment until after the meeting,” he said.

The Basha Kill Area Association environmental group issued an “action alert” to its members for the meeting. It opposes the project atop the environmentally sensitive Shawangunk Ridge.

Flaum was an active player in another race for a Catskill casino more than a decade ago. The Shawanga Lodge property — off Route 17′s Exit 114 — was one of several that vied for one of the up to five Indian casinos Gov. George Pataki wanted built in the Catskills. The Sha-wa-ga Lodge itself closed and burnt down in the early 1970s.

Now the project joins a crowded list of several contenders for a Catskill casino. That list includes two projects each at the old Concord and Grossinger’s resorts in Sullivan County, one at the old Nevele resort in Ulster and another on land in Rock Hill.

State law now allows four non-Indian casinos in three regions — the Catskills/Hudson Valley, the Southern Tier and the Capital/Saratoga region — with one region getting up to two. That area is widely believed to be the Catskills.

Kellie M. Place
Licensed Real Estate Salesperson   
                                       

“Upstate NY’s Real Estate & Land Expert”
“Multi-Million Dollar Top Producer”

“Voted #1 Best of the Best” in the People’s Choice Awards

Century 21 Chesser Realty
Offices in Oneonta, Andes & Delhi, NY
607-434-5263 Cell
607-432-7653 ext 102 Office
www.century21upstatenewyork.com
Director of Administration, New York Summer Music Festival
Chairperson, Oneonta Planning Board
Treasurer/Exec Board, Community Arts Network of Oneonta
Deputy Fire Commissioner, Oneonta Board of Fire Commissioners

Posted in Arts, Culture and Recreation, CATSKILL REAL ESTATE, Catskills, News and Events, Upstate New York Real Estate | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Second Home and Resort Development in the Catskill’s


WHAT’S HOT:  Second Home and Resort Development in the Catskills!

Second Home and Resort Development – After the decline of the traditional resort and farm economic base, the Catskill region has entered an era of intense land speculation.  Anticipation of casinos and heightened interest in second homes has resulted in a new wave of development pressure.  Unfortunately, lands already protected in the seven targeted forest blocks make these areas even more attractive to resort and second home developers.

Catskills n rainbows

The northern hardwood forests of the Catskill region contain a diversity of ecological systems based on unique soils, elevation and micro-climates. The forests of the Catskill Mountains contain rare plants and animals and serve as the source of drinking water for nine million consumers in New York City.

Otsego Lake in December looking from Council RockInspiration Point in the Catskills

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After more than a century of land protection, the Catskill Mountain region represents one of the greatest opportunities to preserve large unfragmented forest systems in the High Allegheney Plateau. Building on lands conserved in the Catskill Park and on land protected for the New York City watershed there is potential to protect forest systems large enough to ensure the survival of species that depend on interior forest habitat.

Margaretville waterfallsfall stream

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Only one hundred miles from New York City, the Catskills are under increasing development pressure from resort and second home development.  Relatively large undeveloped and unprotected areas are dispersed within the areas already preserved.  These areas will attract development as surely as they represent conservation opportunities.

Cabin in the woodsThinking of buying a second home or land in the Catskill’s? Call the area’s Real Estate and Land Expert….. Kellie Place at Century 21.

Sharon Springs
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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http://kellieplace.wordpress.com/2012/09/02/monticello-raceway-concord-casino-planned-600-million-catskill-resort/
http://kellieplace.wordpress.com/2013/12/05/catskills-new-china-city-of-america/
http://kellieplace.wordpress.com/2012/09/28/white-lake-mansion-revitalizing-the-catskills/
http://kellieplace.wordpress.com/2012/08/01/andes-ny-catskill-mountains/
http://kellieplace.wordpress.com/2012/09/02/woodstock-commons-new-green-affordable-housing-units/
http://kellieplace.wordpress.com/2011/09/10/241/

Kellie M. Place
Licensed Real Estate Salesperson   
                                       

“Upstate NY’s Real Estate & Land Expert”
“Multi-Million Dollar Top Producer”

“Voted #1 Best of the Best” in the People’s Choice Awards

Century 21 Chesser Realty
Offices in Oneonta, Andes & Delhi, NY
607-434-5263 Cell
607-432-7653 ext 102 Office
www.century21upstatenewyork.com
Director of Administration, New York Summer Music Festival
Chairperson, Oneonta Planning Board
Treasurer/Exec Board, Community Arts Network of Oneonta
Deputy Fire Commissioner, Oneonta Board of Fire Commissioners

The northern hardwood forests of the Catskill region contain a diversity of ecological systems based on unique soils, elevation and microclimates. The forests of the Catskill Mountains contain rare plants and animals and serve as the source of drinking water for nine million consumers in New York City.

After more than a century of land protection, the Catskill Mountain region represents one of the greatest opportunities to preserve large unfragmented forest systems in the High Allegheney Plateau. Building on lands conserved in the Catskill Park and on land protected for the New York City watershed there is potential to protect forest systems large enough to ensure the survival of species that depend on interior forest habitat.

Only one hundred miles from New York City, the Catskills are under increasing development pressure from resort and second home development.  Relatively large undeveloped and unprotected areas are dispersed within the areas already preserved.  These areas will attract development as surely as they represent conservation opportunities.

Threats
  • Second Home and Resort Development – After the decline of the traditional resort and farm economic base, the Catskill region has entered an era of intense land speculation.  Anticipation of casinos and heightened interest in second homes has resulted in a new wave of development pressure.  Unfortunately, lands already protected in the seven targeted forest blocks make these areas even more attractive to resort and second home developers.

- See more at: http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/regions/northamerica/unitedstates/newyork/placesweprotect/easternnewyork/wherewework/eastern-catskill-mountain-program.xml#sthash.2ytsd1pE.dpuf

Posted in Arts, Culture and Recreation, CATSKILL REAL ESTATE, Catskills, Land For Sale, News and Events, Upstate New York Real Estate | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Healthy living helps restore Sharon Springs


Healthy living helps restore Sharon Springs

Indomitable spirits are reviving the resort culture of Sharon Springs, in Schoharie County. Long known for its magnesium water, iron-rich water, sulfur water and bluestone water for healing the eyes, Sharon Springs is taking on a 21st century approach aimed at resurrecting an a sense of well-being and relaxation.

In and around the village, vestiges of the old landscape — where magnificent large hotels are now defunct — can still be seen. But, a closer look reveals an amazing transformation.

Alder Spa Hotel

By the second half of the 19th century, Sharon Springs was home to more than 60 hotels and rooming houses. It has been said that the spa heyday began in year 1825, when David Eldredge established a boarding house near the mineral springs, sparking an interest in the area.

Magnificent large Hotels were erected and the elite swarmed to the spas for pampering. It was a go-to destination spot and trains were packed with tourists and vacationers on a daily basis. Thanks to its sulfur, magnesium, and chalybeate mineral springs, Sharon Springs grew into a bustling health spa during the 19th century. At the peak of its popularity, Sharon Springs hosted 10,000 visitors each summer, including members of the Vanderbilt family and Oscar Wilde.  Direct ferry-to-stagecoach lines connected New York City to Sharon Springs, followed by rail lines connecting the Village to New York City and Boston via Albany. Visitors would flock to the village each summer to relax in a bathhouse, receive a mud bath, or take a hike through the woods.

.Alder Hotel 1

Sharon Springs was also associated with several beer barons in the late 19th and early 20th century. Most American hops were grown in a belt stretching from Madison to Schoharie Counties in upstate New York. The Sharon Springs area attracted brewers who summered in the area, two of which, Henry Clausen and Max Shaefer, built homes in the Village. The New York hops trade disappeared after the first world war, due to the combined effects of competition from Oregon, a hops blight, and the coming of prohibition.

Roseboro Hotel 1

A series of events culminated in plummeting business in Sharon Springs in the 20th century. With the advent of the automobile, visitors drove elsewhere to new resorts. Scientific discoveries revealed improved treatments. Prohibition closed the taverns and breweries, hop farms switched crops and the trains stopped coming. Society was taking on the habit of eating processed food and going to the local gym to work off the calories — too busy to drive to Sharon Springs.

The bustling village de-bustled.

REVITILIZE:

But again, a series of events culminated and has caused a return of businesses to Sharon Springs. The results of scarfing down fast food and sitting too much in front of the TV went against the grain of well-being. The minds of society started waking up to the fact we need to get out in the great outdoors. We need to know where our food comes from. We need to get to know one another and appreciate our talents. The growing desire to get back to eating and living healthy, eating true organic produce and grass-fed meat. The desire to “live simply so others may simply live” is alive and well in upstate New York.

FARM FRESH & ORGANIC FOODS:

The Black Cat Café menu boasts Lebanese potato salad, homemade corned beef, applewood-smoked bacon and curried chicken. Vegetarian and vegan foodstuff, along with tempting desserts, bring in those who wish to satisfy their appetites with wholesome ingredients and conversation.

Sharon Springs 1Sharon Springs exudes a casual welcoming atmosphere. The newest store, Sustainables, where you can purchase lamb and honey is owned and operated by Caroline Foote. Sustainables sells a stash of items aimed at healthy living. Local farmers bring their organic and grass-fed meat in to sell. Sustainables also offers granola, honey, nuts, dairy and even pottery. The store targets a traditional-food market where the customer can learn the origin of the food they are purchasing.

THE BEEKMAN BUZZ:

Next door is the Beekman Boys 1802 building. After losing their jobs in New York City during the 2008 economic crunch, Brent Ridge and Josh Kilmer-Purcell riveted their attention on prospering in Sharon Springs, buying and fixing up an old farmhouse. Eating what they grow and making food from scratch has become their forte. Staunch, clean-cut and a whirl of activity, the self-styled “Beekman Boys” rapidly became famous for goat-cheese items, blogging and cookery. The Fabulous Beekman Boys is a reality television show that highlights Josh Kilmer-Purcell and his husband Brent Ridge as they learn how to become farmers and launch their lifestyle brand.

Sharon Springs

Beekman Boys Farm

Beekman farm after storm

Beekman Farm after the rain

The cheese that started it all for the Beekman Boys is the Blaak cheese, an Italian style semi-hard cheese made from a 60/40 mix of goat and cow milk. The mix provides a mild yet distinct flavor. This rare cheese is aged for three months in caves and coated with ash at each turning to promote ripening of the wheel.

Beekman Brothers store

One of the top three sellers, Blaak Drizzle, is a reduction of balsamic vinegar, figs and the native elderberries that grow wild around Beekman 1802 Farm and all over New York State.

Beekman's Blaak Drizzle Sauce

Beekman’s Blaak Drizzle

Beekman Store

Beekman Boy’s 1802 Store

Beekman Farm

Beekman Farm

21ST-CENTURY WELLNESS:

Unafraid to tackle wellness in the 21st century, residents have made the conscious decision to impact the health of the people and the health of Sharon Springs in the post-modern era.

Higher levels of spa treatments have developed over the last century, bringing a new fresh look to Sharon Springs. Spring House Spa, owned and operated by Cheryl Rosen, licensed massage therapist, reinstates traditional therapy with products of the highest quality, containing as many natural and organic ingredients as possible to reduce the toxic load on the body.

Spring House Spa uses items such as Herbal Organic Skin Care products to nourish, strengthen and protect skin.

Spring House Spa

Display of photo’s of the old days at the Spring House Spa

Services also include facials, sports massage, mother-to-be massage, deep tissue and aromatherapy massage. Body wraps, reflexology and hydrating foot treatments and so on add to the mission of supporting clients to maintain a low stress and healthy lifestyle.

Inside the Spring House Spa is a gallery with photos from the past displayed professionally on the wall, showing the village’s picturesque history. History books, produced by The Sharon Springs Historical Society, were also for sell.

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baseball

RESCUING THE PAST & INVESTING IN THE FUTURE:

Near the Spring House Spa is the American Hotel, established in 1847, but abandoned 30 years ago. At the end of the 20th century, partners, Garth Roberts and Doug Plummer, purchased and saved the property from almost certain demolition. After four years of extensive renovation, The American Hotel and Restaurant reopened summer of 2001.

American HotelGoing through an album of before-and-after pictures, Plummer said, “The roof was collapsed, the foundation was in terrible shape, and toilets had fallen through floors.” Undaunted, the men cleaned up and hired contractors to renovate. “Black walnut trees had to be cut down for the driveway and the wood was used to build the new bar,” added Plummer, who also mayor of Sharon Springs.

Plummer said, “Investors from South Korea are set to restore the Imperial Baths on Main Street and the Columbia Hotel. Also, California investors have signed a contract to purchase the Roseboro Hotel and begin renovation this spring. Then, along with other investors, Garth Roberts and I will be transforming the Klinkhart Hall into the Sharon Springs Center for the Arts once a 501 (c) status is granted.”

The Klinkart Hall was built in 1889 and contains an auditorium upstairs, with a movie area downstairs that seats 350. 

Roseboro Hotel

Roseboro Hotel

Roseboro Hotel 1

Roseboro Hotel

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Also on Main Street is Cobbler & Company. Plummer said, “The owner, Maureen Lodies, has been here 20 years.” Cobbler & Co. is a 12 room eclectic gift shop, with items for family, friends, home, garden and entertainment.

bathhouses

natural springs bathhouse

There is more to see in historic Sharon Springs. Temples, museums, old mansions and an old schoolhouse. Interested in more active pursuits? There is hiking, bicycling, dog training courses and planned runs. You can also partake in the village’s self-guided historic and architectural walking tours. And of course there are the spas and bathhouses, the surrounding nature, streams and waterfalls. A beautiful and bucolic setting surrounding a bustling upstate community that has come home again. The 1800s may be long gone, but the Sharon Springs of today has plenty to offer for 21st-century visitors.

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The Village of Sharon Springs sits in the northwest part of the Town of Sharon, New York, approximately 50 miles (80 km) west of Albany, the state capital. Surrounded by rolling hills and nestled in a winding valley, the tidy village is near some of New York State’s most popular attractions. Howe Caverns is 15 miles (24 km) to the south while The Mohawk River and Erie Canal are only 10 miles (16 km) to the north. The Adirondack Park is further north, about an hour away. Cooperstown, New York, home to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, The Farmer’s Museum, Glimmerglass Opera House and The Fenimore Art Museum, is 30 miles (48 km) to the west and the Catskill Park is 50 miles (80 km) to the south.
 
For all your real estate needs, buying, selling, investing or in the market for that “back to the earth” organic farm… call the area’s Real Estate & Land Expert!  Kellie Place at Century 21!

Kellie M. Place
Licensed Real Estate Salesperson   
                                       

“Upstate NY’s Real Estate & Land Expert”
“Multi-Million Dollar Top Producer”

“Voted #1 Best of the Best” in the People’s Choice Awards

Century 21 Chesser Realty
Offices in Oneonta, Andes & Delhi, NY
607-434-5263 Cell
607-432-7653 ext 102 Office
www.century21upstatenewyork.com
Director of Administration, New York Summer Music Festival
Chairperson, Oneonta Planning Board
Treasurer/Exec Board, Community Arts Network of Oneonta
Deputy Fire Commissioner, Oneonta Board of Fire Commissioners

Posted in Arts, Culture and Recreation, Capital District, Catskills, Organic & Healthy Living, Saratoga County | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Kaaterskill Clove’s many treasures!


Kaaterskill

Kaaterskill Clove

Kaaterskill Clove

Kaaterskill Clove

The stories and legends have all come and gone. One even mentions that the famous pirate, Captain Kidd, buried his treasure in Kaaterskill Clove.


Kaaterskill Falls
In the beginning, before the event of Henry’s Half Moon, the Native Americans were in awe of these mountains. For it is in these mountains where Manitou, the great spirit, lived and perhaps still does. If these indigenous peoples did come across any precious metals, chances are they would have left them largely untouched, for doesn’t everything in the mountains belong to the great spirit?
And then there is a story of a guy called Dutch Schultz….”Soon, there were as many versions of the legend of the buried treasure as there were stories of the Dutchman himself. Most of them involved Phoenicia, and many referenced a map, supposedly sketched by Lulu Rosenkranz lest the location of the burial site be forgotten by the city slickers still strangers to the trees and rocks and streams of the upstate country.
Several versions of the treasure tale place the location of the burial ground somewhere along Route 28 between the roadway and the Esopus Creek. Some place it along the railroad tracks leading into Phoenicia. One of the most popular stories is that Schultz and Lulu Rosenkranz carried a steel safe containing the loot to Phoenicia on an April night in 1933 and buried it in a grove of pine trees near the Esopus, with the obligatory “X” marking the specific tree under which the digging was done.” http://www.catskill.net/purple/schultz.htm

Stay on top of the mountains at Rosehaven Inn a picture-perfect, turn-of-the-century restoration that sits atop Kaaterskill Clove Pass and one steep, walkable mile from Kaaterskill Falls. Each of the four large bedrooms has a gas fireplace and double-size whirlpool tubs, but Room 2, in the second turret, has a private terrace and a sunset view.

The Fairlawn Inn  in Hunter, is a more casual B and B; the turreted Victorian has a pool table and, as of this summer, a sprawling backyard patio with a steel fire pit. Innkeeper Chuck Tomajko adorns the modest mix-and-match guest rooms with his art collection, which includes a few originals of famous twentieth-century abstracts.

Opened in January, the eighteen-room, Adirondack-style Hotel Mountain Brook (from  in Tannersville, is steps from the town’s lively restaurant row. The third-floor Byrdcliffe room has a fireplace and vaulted ceilings. Breakfast at the hotel’s excellent restaurant is included.

Splurge on full-service amenities at the retro ski lodge Scribner Hollow Lodge It boasts tennis courts, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, and a hotel restaurant with excellent regional fare. Soak sore muscles in the kitschy, cavelike indoor pool, the Grotto. Request the Hunting Lodge for some extra room, a gas fireplace, and unbeatable views of the Hunter Mountain ski area.

For breakfast anytime, stop into the boho Maggie’s Krooked Café (5778 Main Street, Tannersille; 518-589-6101). Order the Top Secret omelet (sh, it’s pesto) with spicy home fries or the buttery, crispy-edged Old-World Potato Pancakes.

Across the street, sample some of the 300 beers and 100 cheeses at Last Chance Antiques & Cheese Café. Sop up the Emmentaler, Gruyère, and brandy-and-white-wine fondue with crusty blocks of French bread. Get some truffles, Belgian beer, and caramel turtles to go from the general store up front.

The Champagne cocktails and dirty martinis at Peekamoose Restaurant & Tap Room are alone worth the 23-mile trip to Big Indian. Chef Devin Mills, who honed his skills at Gramercy Tavern, serves a daily rotating menu created around the local food supply.

Hike to the base of Kaaterskill Falls—the 260-foot, two-tiered inspiration to generations of poets, artists, and, of course, hikers—by taking the official trail from the Route 23A horseshoe (rocks are slick and mossy all year around, so wear good hiking shoes), past the smaller Bastion Falls, and up the half-mile, steep incline (locals call it “StairMaster hike”). For a more impressive (read: terrifying) view, drive four miles north to Laurel House Road and take the quarter-mile stroll from the parking lot to the edge of the overlook. Check out the names carved into the stones—some date back to the nineteenth century.  Kaaterskill Falls pool

Escape the beached hordes at North-South Lake and rent a kayak, canoe  or paddle boat  from the recreation center near the parking lot. Paddle to the far side of the lake and take in the green slopes rising straight up from the water’s edge—at 2,250 feet above the valley floor, you can look down over five states in clear weather.

Channel your inner-daredevil by driving the treacherous but scenic Platte Cove Road, located off Route 16, outside of Tannersville. There are no guardrails, so drive carefully as you peer into the precipitous gorge below. Or park in the lot just beyond the old stone bridge and scale down the massive boulders (at your own risk) to get a view of the secluded Devil’s Kitchen Falls.

Devil's Kitchen

Esopus CreekFor less life-threatening thrills, go tubing or kayaking on the Esopus Creek, in Phoenicia, fifteen miles southwest of the falls. The Town Tinker, on Bridge Street, will set you up with river-appropriate shoes (a.k.a. an old pair of Adidas), a life vest, and a quick, crowded bus ride up the river.  The beginners’ course and the white-knuckle course are both two and half miles long.

Kaaterskill high peak

Kaaterskill High Peak

Suck it up and hike the wearying nine miles to Kaaterskill High Peak, one of the northern Catskills’ most gorgeous and overlooked summits. The lesser-known Wildcat, Buttermilk, and Santa Cruz waterfalls fall along the High Peak trail, and there’s an eerie skeleton of a plane crash at the summit. The trail becomes poorly marked towards the top, so take a map.

Bliss out for a day by taking a tour of the northern Catskills’ trippy roadside attractions. From Hunter, start out west on Route 23A to the St. John the Baptist Ukrainian Catholic Church (Route 23A/Ukraine Road, Hunter, N.Y.; 518-263-3862), a pagoda-shaped cedar church topped with tall octagonal lanterns and bizarre green obelisks. In the summer months, tour the ornate, wood-carved panels and alter of the interior, open from Tuesday through Sunday, from noon to 4 p.m., and for special concerts. Then take Route 28 a few miles east, past the Emerson Resort to the World’s Largest Kaleidoscope (5340 Route 28, Mount Tremper, N.Y.; 877-688-2828), a psychedelic light show inside an old grain silo. Three mind-bending ten-minute shows cost $5. On the way out, choose one of over 300 kaleidoscopes, including handcrafted, one-of-a-kind pieces that fetch $4,000.

Kaaterskill Clove’s many treasures are waiting to be discovered!

LINKS:

Enthusiasts and volunteers at the Catskill Mountain Club give clear introductions to the region.

Peak at hikers’ videos and pictures of trail highlights at www.catskillsearch.com.

Sick of nature? Peruse upcoming arts and cultural events at http://www.catskillmtn.org/

Plan your trip around one of Hunter Mountain’s Music & Arts Festivals

Kellie M. Place                                    final - size small (307x640) (2)
Licensed Real Estate Salesperson   
                                       

“Upstate NY’s Real Estate & Land Expert”
“Multi-Million Dollar Top Producer”

“Voted #1 Best of the Best” in the People’s Choice Awards

Century 21 Chesser Realty
Offices in Oneonta, Andes & Delhi, NY
607-434-5263 Cell
607-432-7653 ext 102 Office
www.century21upstatenewyork.com
Director of Administration, New York Summer Music Festival
Chairperson, Oneonta Planning Board
Treasurer/Exec Board, Community Arts Network of Oneonta
Deputy Fire Commissioner, Oneonta Board of Fire Commissioners

Posted in Arts, Culture and Recreation, Catskills, Random Notes | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Best places to kayak in the Hudson Valley & Catskill Mountains


Hudson Valley

Esopus Creek – The Esopus Creek is actually two of the best places, not just one. Real white water kayaking can be found in the upper reaches of the Esopus, above the Ashokan Reservoir. Using the United States Geological Survey (USGS) gage at Coldbrook, you can determine the average water depth. Esopus levels of 5 feet and above insure the best results.

Esopus Creek

For novices and folks who don’t (or can’t) travel with their equipment, Town Tinker Tube offers a total rental package that includes an inflatable kayak and paddle, life vest, helmet, wetsuit and a one-time Kayak Taxi transportation.

The lower Esopus offers some great flat water kayaking both below Glenerie Falls, where flat water winds along sparsely populated shores for several miles above the dam in Saugerties, while below the dam provides access to marshes and bays both above and below the entrance to the Hudson River. Chorvas Park on East Bridge Street has a public dock for boat launching.

Tivoli Bays – Also in the Hudson River, across from Saugerties is Tivoli Bays. It is designated as part of the Hudson River National Estuarine Research Reserve, the freshwater tidal wetlands nationally recognized as an essential wildlife habitat. While there is a steep path from the parking area to North Bay, seasoned kayakers go in at Tivoli’s public dock and head south, or cross the Hudson from the boat launch area in Glasco. Paddling.net offers a map of canoe & kayak launch sites in the region.

Catskill Mountains

42 class I – V whitewater kayaking streams are documented at Riverfacts.com. They include launch locations and stream descriptions in Greene, Sullivan, Delaware, Schoharie and Ulster Counties, with a detailed map and directions for each.

Otsego lake kayakers

Kayaking and canoeing are also very popular on the East and West Branch of the Delaware River. Catskill Outfitters, in Walton, NY, offer rentals on the largely undiscovered West Branch of the Delaware. In that same area there are many lakes and ponds available for recreation. Pleasant Pheasant Farm offers Kayak and canoe rentals on Lake Wawaka, in Halcottsville, with access to the East Branch of the Delaware River.

Purchasing Kayaks – Kenco, on Rt. 28 just off exit 19 (Kingston) on the New York State Thruway (I-87) offers a wide selection of sporting goods including EVERYTHING you’ll need to outfit yourself for a Kayak trip. It is locally owned and staffed with top notch people. Stop in for all your sport-related and work-related gear.

For more information, buy the book: A Kayaker’s Guide to the Hudson River Valley – FINALLY – a guide canoeists and kayakers can use for the vast watershed of the Hudson River Valley. This National Heritage Area holds several major rivers, scores of streams and tributaries, dozens of large lakes, and hundreds of ponds. The author leads the reader on 33 guided paddles through them with maps, photos and detailed descriptions of what you can expect on their quiet waters. 6×9 224 pages b&w illus resources Paper

Kellie M. Place                                                                         final - size small (307x640) (2)
“Upstate NY’s Real Estate & Land Expert”
“Multi-Million Dollar Top Producer”

“Voted #1 Best of the Best” in the People’s Choice Awards

Century 21 Chesser Realty
Offices in Oneonta,  Delhi  & Andes, NY
607-434-5263 Cell
607-432-7653 ext 102 Office
www.century21upstatenewyork.com
Director of Administration, New York Summer Music Festival
Chairperson, Oneonta Planning Board
Treasurer/Exec Board, Community Arts Network of Oneonta
Deputy Fire Commissioner, Oneonta Board of Fire Commissioners

Posted in Arts, Culture and Recreation, CATSKILL REAL ESTATE, Catskills, Hunting & Fishing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The CATSKILL’S are CALLING ALL FISHERMEN


Unless you stumble upon Livingston Manor in mid-June during its annual Trout Parade, it’s hard to grasp what this otherwise sleepy town in northern Sullivan County is all about. But a Main Street sign “SMALL TOWN — BIG BACKYARD” best explains why this little spot, two hours northwest of Manhattan, is a big draw for nature-loving second-home owners.

Livingston Manor, or “the Manor,” as locals call it, is the birthplace of American fly-fishing. The hamlet in the Town of Rockland, population 1,200, has two world-class fishing spots — the Beaverkill River and the Willowemoc Creek. And it’s next door to Roscoe, known as Trout Town, USA.

Van Tran flat bridge world class trout fishing   Jason on fishing trip

MIND YOUR MANOR: Livingston Manor, two hours away from NYC in Sullivan County, is where you’ll find the covered Van Tran Flat Bridge and serious trout fishing.

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A second-home seeker can net a Livingston Manor fixer-upper for less than $100,000. Ten miles north in Lew Beach, a private enclave of more than 70 homes developed by Larry Rockefeller, has private fishing access to the Beaverkill River and clubhouse amenities.

There’s nothing like standing in the river, early in the morning, feeling the pressure of the water, listening and smelling the river, being present. And if you get that tug on the end of the line, it’s an incredible way to start the day.

fly fishing

The Manor, situated at the doorstep of Catskill Park, off Route 17, is the kind of town where you can find gun ammo and bait and tackle at the Fur, Fin and Feather Sport Shop on DeBruce Road. And local, organic produce, milk, eggs, American farmstead cheese, fresh-baked goods, meadow-raised meats, fresh Beaverkill trout, and honey and maple syrup at the Main Street Farm Market & Cafe.

Demand for second homes is robust and prices are still low.  You can buy a three-bedroom cottage with one bathroom on 1.3 acres of land for $110,000, or a four-bedroom, 2 1/2-bathroom Ranch, near the historic Van Tran Flat Bridge, with access to good trout fishing on the Willowemoc Creek, for $199,000. Or you can reel in a three-bedroom, 2 1/2-bathroom, post-and-beam on 20 acres, with 6 miles of private fishing access and membership in the Beaverkill Stream and Mountain Club, for $895,000.

The Manor and surrounding small towns are devoid of chains and fast-food joints. Main Street sticks to what small towns do best: There’s the Robin Hood Diner, Pronto Pizza, Cafe 43 and Peck’s Market. Morgan Outdoors is a big lure for sportsmen. There are a smattering of mom-and-pops like Willow and Brown, Mountain Bear Crafts and other galleries and gift shops for those who appreciate local offerings. Will Hardware is a mainstay, and Manor Pharmacy just opened last summer. Big-box stores and major supermarkets can be found 15 minutes north on Route 17, in Liberty.

The Catskill Arts Society, which occupies a 4,000-square-foot building on Main Street, has a gallery, event space, a digital arts lab, and it offers classes. Every August, the Shandelee Music Festival’s Summer Sunset Concert Series draws big names in chamber music, and the brand new state-of-the-art Bethel Woods Center for the Arts is 25 minutes away.

Bethel Center for the Arts

Bethel Center for the Arts

And don’t forget the new Catskill Brewery on Old Route 17, which has great tasting lagers and ales and manufactures high-end craft beer incorporating local ingredients. The venture is the first craft brewery in the greater Catskills Region and will offer tours and a tasting room where visitors can sample its suds, visit the gift shop and learn how beer is made.

The resilience of this community is deep-rooted because this is where fly-fishing began, and it’s as important to the American psyche as baseball and hot dogs.

Frankie's Catch

Kellie M. Place                                            final - size small (307x640) (2) (307x640)
“Upstate NY’s Real Estate & Land Expert”
“Multi-Million Dollar Top Producer”

“Voted #1 Best of the Best” in the People’s Choice Awards

Century 21 Chesser Realty
Offices in Oneonta,  Delhi NY
607-434-5263 Cell
607-432-7653 ext 102 Office
www.century21upstatenewyork.com

Director of Administration, New York Summer Music Festival
Chairperson, Oneonta Planning Board
Treasurer/Exec Board, Community Arts Network of Oneonta
Deputy Fire Commissioner, Oneonta Board of Fire Commissioners

Posted in Arts, Culture and Recreation, CATSKILL REAL ESTATE, Catskills, Hunting & Fishing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

CATSKILLS: NEW “CHINA CITY OF AMERICA”


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mw6gr6FAH5M&list=PLE74E5A602993F802&index=13

China City Of America is a significant residential, commercial, and resort development being proposed for the towns of Thompson and Mamakating. The Mamakating portion consists of resort development along Yankee Lake and Industrial development along County Rt. 56 and bordering Wurtsboro Hills. The area is in the same vicinity as the proposed Concord Hotel/Casino and Monticello Raceway and Resort being proposed in Monticello.

  • Controversial proposal under government consideration to transform upstate New York into ‘America’s China City’
  • Sherry Li, a Long Island businesswoman, has developed plans to create a massive ‘Chinese city’ in the Catskills, Upstate New York
  • Described as like a live-in Disneyland, the city would sit on 600-acres of wetlands outside the Sullivan County town of Thompson
  • The U.S. government have confirmed they are looking at the proposal
  • Li says it would eventually draw $6 billion in foreign investment
  • Those opposing the plans have labelled it a ‘scam’

A Long Island businesswoman wants to build a massive “Chinese Disneyland” in the Catskills — which would include an amusement park, huge mansions and a“Forbidden City” laid out according to the principles of Feng Shui.

7 Catskills China Kellie Place

‘CHINA CITY OF AMERICA’ LOCATED IN CATSKILLS OF UPSTATE NEW YORK: ‘CHINESE CITY’ PROPOSAL BY SHERRY LI WOULD ALSO GRANT VISAS TO WEALTHY CHINESE WHO WOULD INVEST $500K IN U.S.

The China City of America scheme could bring thousands of wealthy Chinese immigrants to the tiny Sullivan County town of Thompson, under a federal program that lets foreigners get visas by investing $500,000 in the US.

1 Catskills China 1 Kellie Place  4 Catskills China Kellie Place

Residences that are able to host thousands of people collectively make up a big part of the China City of America proposal, as seen by the houses in this impression. Under the plans, the city will be constructed in accordance with the principles of Feng Shui and each Chinese province will have its own section and offices.

The mastermind behind the plan, Sherry Li, says the development would eventually draw $6 billion in foreign investment.

“We can kind of view it as a Chinese concept of Disney — so it’s going to have lot of attractions for families,” she said.

The designs for China City include a college, 1,000 residences, a Chinese-themed retail center and possibly a casino.

The place would feel like a trip to China just 90 miles outside New York city, as one area would mark parts of the Chinese Zodiac while another would have 16 buildings representing the major Chinese dynasties.

“Each dynasty will have its building and will have rides go with it,” Li said at a town council meeting in May where she pitched the original plan.

China City’s web site features golden dragons, and projects an initial investment of $325 million — with $10 million going to a “Temple of Heaven,” $24 million on a hotel and entertainment complex and $20 million to construct a “Forbidden City.”

6 Catskills China Kellie Place

It also projects a $65 million infusion from the U.S. government – without naming what agency would make the contribution.

“It’s multiple phases. No project is going to happen in one day. It’s going to be step-by-step,” Li told the Post, saying the amusement park component would get built in a later phase.

The plan is now under consideration by the leaders of Thompson, population 15,000.

It’s already getting a lot of opposition.

“It actually seems surreal but unfortunately it is real,” said Paula Medley, an activist who heads a local environmental group.

“This is kind of a combination of pie-in-the-sky and ethnic solidarity and showmanship and a federal program that sort of facilitates this sort of thing. It’s really an odd mix,” said David North, who authored a new report picking apart China City’s proposal for the D.C.-based Center for Immigration Studies.

Others questioned its link to the federal visa program, known as EB-5.

“It sounds like an EB-5 scam,” said Laura Corruzi, a New York City attorney who vacations in the area. “The financials don’t really support the $6 billion project.”

The Thompson town council has had at least five meetings on the project, with the latest Tuesday night.

Li wouldn’t reveal the number of investors she has lined up, but she said most were Chinese nationals.

“Whoever is interested [will] invest with us. At this point we don’t have [Chinese] government investors at all,” she said, describing her own background only as being in the “financial industry.”

“It’s in the thousands of apartments, houses — it’s huge,” said Thompson town supervisor Tony Cellini. He said the total population of Chinese coming in eventually could equal the town’s if the developers “fulfill’ all their wishes.

“We’re not certain we have the infrastructure to handle all that at this point,” he added.

“I believe China City is very serious but they’ve got a long road ahead of them to get all their approvals.”

U.S. immigration officials are considering a proposal from Chinese investors to create a multibillion-dollar development in New York’s Catskills called “China City” — raising concerns among critics about the potential cost to U.S. taxpayers and, according to one analyst, the possibility it could be a “stalking horse” for the Beijing government.

A spokesman from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services told FoxNews.com that the proposal for Thompson, N.Y., has not been approved but is under consideration.

The mysterious proposed development appears to be a step beyond the types of ethnic enclaves scattered throughout U.S. cities, like the Chinatown sections of New York City or San Francisco. The 600-acre “China City of America” is located far outside New York City in upstate New York’s wetlands and is a meticulously planned project, calling for family housing, a college and student residences, among other structures. In addition to needing federal approval, it would likely need a host of state and local permits before ground could be broken.

“It’s a perfect storm of problems.”

- David North, Center for Immigration Studies

If approved, every province in China would have an office there and foreign investors funding the development would receive green cards for their $500,000 checks under the EB-5 program designed to lure foreign investment, according to the Center for Immigration Studies, a conservative organization staunchly opposed to the project.

A detailed report authored by David North, a fellow with the Washington-based group, claimed there is “a charge from within the Chinese community that China City is a stalking horse for the Chinese communist government in Beijing.” He claimed he was told one group raised objections with the USCIS.

“It’s a perfect storm of problems,” North told FoxNews.com, citing what he called dubious job creation claims by the promoters as well as national security concerns. North noted that the developers claim 20 percent of the funding would come from U.S. taxpayers, which he said was a “pipe dream.”

A review by FoxNews.com of the the China City Regional Center’s website could not confirm such a claim involving U.S. taxpayer money, though there is little English on the site, which is affiliated with a Florida law firm. No one at the law firm could be reached for comment.

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services said Wednesday it does not disclose details of pending applications.

“The [China City] Regional Center is not approved. An application has been filed and it’s still pending. A decision has not been made on it yet,” Christopher Bentley, a spokesman for USCIS, told FoxNews.com.

“With all cases of a request for an immigrations service or benefit, we rely on the information provided and the law to reach a decision on whether it can or cannot be approved,” Bentley said.

Local officials did not respond to requests for comment. But a videotape of a public meeting held in Thompson in May, available on YouTube, addressed the proposal and underscored the controversy surrounding the development. Supporters of the project, in an economically depressed area of Sullivan County, say they believe it would offer both a financial and cultural boon to the region.

“Families who invest in EB-5 program are normally influential and wealthy families from China. A lot of them are successful business owners or enterprisers. Most of those investors are highly educated and skilled in different fields,” wrote one poster.

“I believe this is a big projects that can creates thousands of job opportunities,” wrote another. “Such a precious opportunity to learn more about Chinese culture and beauty.”

                  3 Catskills China Kellie Place  5 Catskills China Kellie Place

Developer Sherry Li says China City of America would feature a ‘Forbidden City’ (center), as modeled on the historic Beijing landmark, while a theme park styled similar to Disneyland would ‘come later’ in the project.

2 Catskills China 2 Kellie PlaceThe community: Huge mansion-style homes will be built, according to the plans, to accommodate Chinese nationals who opt to buy into the project. Under the EB-5 visa program, foreigners are permitted a green card if they make a $500,000 investment in the United States.

My grandfather always said…. “Never let an opportunity pass you by!” Between the Concord Hotel, Casino & Raceway Resort and the new China City in the Catskills, now is the time to invest in land in Upstate New York! Contact the “Land Expert of Upstate NY”…..

Kellie M. Place @ Century 21 Chesser Realty

Kellie Place, Realtor
Upstate New York’s Real Estate & Land Expert
Multi-Million Dollar Producer
Century 21 Chesser Realty
607-434-5263 – cell
with offices in Oneonta
kmplace02@aol.com
www.chesser21.com ;
www.century21upstatenewyork.com

Posted in Arts, Culture and Recreation, CATSKILL REAL ESTATE, Catskills, News and Events, Upstate New York Real Estate | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment