Monday, June 30, 2008

Community Art

The newly-renovated Jack DeVito Veterans Memorial Field and Track in Yorktown Heights features a sculpture by resident Al Landzberg. “Big Sky,” made of welded aluminum, is 10 feet tall and 8 feet wide and is part of the artist's tree series. The sculpture was dedicated in a ceremony yesterday. SOURCE: The New York Times: Skyward-Looking Sculpture Joins Park
Image: The New York Times

Farmers Direct

Northern Westchester is blessed with a large number of farmers markets, but now you can get the fresh produce without leaving your house. Peekskill resident Maryanne Hedrick has started My Personal Farmers, a service which delivers fresh produce from local farms and artisan-made products directly to your door. Customers visit the website to select their order and, for a fee, the service makes a weekly trip to deliver the goods. Current offerings include organic smoked fish, fresh strawberries, and spinach and goat cheese quiche. There's also a Locovore's Club, which offers discounts. My Personal Farmerss
SOURCE: North County News: A 'locovore's' paradise

Friday, June 27, 2008

Weekend Events

Activities and things to do in Northern Westchester this weekend

The Dirt on Soil What’s the scoop on soil? With shovels and sifters we’ll play in the dirt to get to the nitty-gritty of life in the stuff beneath our feet. Saturday, 11:00. Teatown Lake Reservation

Bluebird Monitoring Check on the variety of birds making nests and raising their young in the Sanctuary's birdhouses. Saturday, 10:00. Westmoreland Sanctuary

The Caterpillar Hunter The theater company Traveling Lantern presents this adventure for kids based on the late Steve Irwin's Crocodile Hunter character. Saturday, 1:00. Croton Free Library

Family Fun Day Pick your own vegetables or purchase them at the new farm stand. The vineyard manager of The Winery at St. George will offer tips for growing grapes and wine-making. Hilltop’s new farmer will demonstrate how to compost garden and kitchen waste and reduce stormwater run-off. Using potatoes, children can learn the basics of printing stamps. Saturday, 9:00 to 12:00. Hilltop Hanover Farm and Environmental Center

Serkin and Delfs As part of Caramoor's ongoing Internation Music Festival, pianist Peter Serkin illuminates works by Bach and Mozart. The Orchestra of St. Luke's (above) presents a program under the baton of conductor Andreas Delfs. Saturday, 8:00. Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts

Dr. John Legendary New Orleans pianist and singer Dr. John plays his own brand of "voodoo" music, performing old favorites plus material from his new album, "City That Care Forgot." Saturday, 8:00. Tarrytown Music Hall

Blues Buddha Musician Tommy Dudley plays the blues. Saturday, 9:30. 12 Grapes Music and Wine Bar

Woods Wise How is your sense of direction? Learn to navigate through the woods using topographic maps and compass, and read the woods to keep from getting lost. Sunday, 10:00. Teatown Lake Reservation

Pond Study at the Farm Learn what creatures live in and around the farm pond. Sunday, 1:00 to 3:00. Muscoot Farm

Summer Walking Tour Join a horticulturist to enjoy the summer blooming perennials at their peak. Sunday, 2:00. Lasdon Park, Arboretum & Veterans Memorial

African-American Heritage Celebration Food, arts and crafts, music, dance and more. Sunday, 12:00 to 7:00. Kensico Dam Plaza

Wildflower Walk Take a walk along Swan Lake with a naturalist to see which wildflowers are in bloom. Sunday, 10:30 to 12:00. Rockefeller State Park Preserve

Witness to Our Times Photographer Richard Falco will give a lecture and image presentation on the social, cultural, and historical value of documentary work. Images will be drawn from Rick's photo assignments on four different continents and 35 countries. Sunday, 8:30. Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Almost Fabulous

Talk about potential. This 1915, 3,400 square foot house is crying out for a little loving. The apparent victim of some off-key renovations, the 4 bedroom house has many gorgeous rooms (love the master!) and it's easy to see what a beaut this could be with some work. The exterior and 3 acre property don't require any imagination--they're good to go. Located near Croton village on Finney Farm Road (just down the street from a recent Hot Property), this one has lots to like. One thing you won't care for, however, is the $24,328 tax bill, which seems high for the price range. $925,000.
Houlihan Lawrence, Google Map, Live Search Map

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

8 Artists on Display

The Summer Show at Eyebuzz Fine Art showcases the work of eight artists. The artists are Bill Mead (right), Eunju Kang (left), Robert Larson, Lynne Freidman, Lois Cremmins, Nina Weinberg Doran, Bruce Habowski, and Matt Licari. The show runs through July 31. Eyebuzz Fine Art
Images: Eyebuzz Fine Art

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Fix it, Love it

Looking for something cheap with loads of potential? This small but sweet 1934 cape in Peekskill might do the trick. The 1,500 square foot house has 4 bedrooms, 1 bath, and some really nice details. If you look past the wallpaper, pink tiles, and very tired kitchen, the possibilities are clear. The property is pretty big at almost half an acre. The one big con is...can you guess? That's right--the taxes (a hefty $10,360). But, given the asking price, this still looks like a good deal. $299,900
Century 21 North Star Realty, Google Map, Live Search Map

Monday, June 23, 2008

Recent Sales and Deals

Two previously-featured Hot Properties have gone to contract since my last update on June 9. Both had their asking prices trimmed since I featured them--the Mt. Kisco listing was reduced by $24,000, while the Ossining house got a $60,000 cut. (The prices listed below are the last recorded ones.) It's nice to see that interesting homes--whether from the 1960's or the 1770's--are still finding buyers.

Location: Mt. Kisco
Featured: April 15, 2008
Asking Price: $875,000
Status: Conditional Contract

Location: Ossining
Featured: February 5, 2008
Asking Price: $689,000
Status: Conditional Contract

Friday, June 20, 2008

Weekend Events

Activities and things to do this weekend in Northern Westchester:

Open-Hearth Cooking Sugar, flowers, fruits, and herbs create the confections, cakes, and sweetmeats of the time. Saturday, 10:00 to 2:00. Van Cortlandt Manor

Insects Come learn about the insects that may be flying around your yard and find out why even the pesky ones are important. Saturday, 3:00. Teatown Lake Reservation

Babes in the Woods It's the time of year when the woods are alive with young animals, birds, and plants. Come discover where young ones are hiding. Saturday, 3:00. Westmoreland Sanctuary

Patti LaBelle The 5th Annual Red Carpet Gala Fundraiser Concert presents legendary vocalist Patti LaBelle. Saturday, 8:00. Paramount Center for the Arts

Summer Solstice Celebration This benefit ($50 per person) features food, live music, and an astronomy program--all in a stunning setting. Saturday, 6:00 to 10:00. Lasdon Park, Arboretum & Veterans Memorial

Melvin Taylor Blues Band Blues guitarist Melvin Taylor and his band will be performing. Saturday, 9:30 to 12:30. 12 Grapes Music and Wine Bar

Clearwater Great Hudson River Revival Music, food, and tall ships on the Hudson River--what more could you ask for? A huge number of performers will do their thing at Croton Point Park. Saturday and Sunday, 10:00 to dusk. Clearwater Festival

Coffee House Celebration My favorite coffee house celebrates 5 years with cake, coffee, a judged latte art competition, and special prizes. Sunday, 6:30. Peekskill Coffee House

Works by Monique Ford View the current exhibition of works by local artist Monique Ford (above). Through June 28th. Saturday, 10:00 to 5:00. James NY

Otello Verdi's opera, in English with suppertitles. Saturday, 8:00; Sunday, 2:00. The Taconic Opera, Yorktown Stage

Nature Safari An introductory hike to see wildlife and visit the farm animals at Stone Barns. It is a 2 hour, 1 mile hike. Sunday, 10:30. Rockefeller State Park Preserve

American Bluegrass Opening weekend of the 63rd annual Caramoor International Music Festival continues in the Venetian Theater with the quintessentially American bluegrass group, Chatham County Line. Sunday, 4:30. Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts

Damsels and Dragons Noted author and graphic illustrator Ed Lam leads this journey to find a variety of damselflies and dragonflies. Sunday, 10:00. Bedford Audoban Society, Bylane Farm, 35 Todd Road, Katonah

Thursday, June 19, 2008


It might be love. Built in 1837, this stunner of a colonial has been nicely updated. There's all the charm and original detail you could ask for, plus a very attractive renovated kitchen (with double-height ceiling, no less). The 3,300 square foot house has 5 bedrooms and a lovely wrap-around porch overlooking the 2 acre property. There's even a picture-perfect barn. Located in Katonah, the house is close to the village center and train station. To top it off, the taxes ($18,694) are on the low side for the price-range. $1,149,000
Coldwell Banker, Google Map, Live Search Map

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Hot Wheels

This exhibition features the work of Chris Jones, the current Artist-in-Residence at the HVCCA. Since February, the artist has worked directly in the mezzanine gallery to produce site-specific work, much of which is influenced by his time living in Peekskill. The full size horse and stagecoach (which is really cool) was inspired by an historical photograph of a coach passing through town. Other works include Bike (above). The show runs through August 17. Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art
Image: Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary art

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Wee Delight

At 1,200 square feet, this 1912 colonial is on the tight side, but the 3 bedroom home has lots going for it. A sun porch, great original details, lots of light, and a very nicely renovated kitchen sweeten the rather small pot. Located in a nice section of Ossining, close to the train station and shopping, the 0.9 of an acre lot features a lovely patio. Remember, quality over quantity. $434,500
Houlihan Lawrence, Google Map, Live Search Map

Monday, June 16, 2008

News Notes: Music, Food, and Nature

Sunday's New York Times had a number of reviews and articles about Northern Westchester:

New Tunes at Caramoor Festival: According to the Times, this year's festival is a major departure from those of the past and will feature a diverse array of performers and pieces. These changes are the fruit of efforts by Michael Barrett, Caramoor's chief executive officer, to shake up the festival. One of the more popular summer music festivals in the area, Caramoor presents 38 concerts over the course of the summer. SOURCE: Caramoor Festival Opens Up Its Tent

Mauro's Restaurant: The Ossining Italian establishment rates a "good" by the Times' reviewer, who notes that the restaurant offers both classic dishes and "some interesting variations." Dishes recommended by the Times include the orecchiette with sausage, gargenelli with mushrooms, and the chicken rustica. Mauro's Restaurant, SOURCE: Tradition, and a Number of Twists

Bloom's Kosher Delicatessen: The Yorktown Heights deli and restaurant gets a rave for it's Shabbat specials and it's daily fare, such as lox and bagels, pastrami on rye, and delicious pickles. Bloom's Kosher Delicatessen, SOURCE: Good (for) Shabbat

700 Acres in Cortlandt Preserved: The town of Cortlandt has reached an agreement with the owners of a huge tract of land on Furnace Dock Road to create the largest conservation easement in the county. The owner, A.V.R. Homebuilders, will construct 147 attached condo units on a small piece of the property, a fraction of the 500 houses originally planned. The rest of the nearly 700 acres will be preserved, with 46 acres to be managed by the Westchester Land Trust and open to the public for hiking and other uses. The land includes a 43 acre pond and Dickerson Mountain, one of the highest peaks in Westchester. SOURCE: After 10 Years, Tract Wins Protective Status

Friday, June 13, 2008

Weekend Events

Activities and fun things to do this weekend in Northern Westchester:

Croton's Clay Harvest clay from the Hudson River bank, then prepare it for making pottery. Saturday, 2:00. Croton Point Park Nature Center

Ossining Village Fair The 28th annual fair features food, music, crafts, and merchandise. Saturday, 10:00 to 5:00. Ossining Village

Teatown Hike Join Teatown educators and a Club Fit hike leader on a trek through the back trails. Saturday, 10:00. Teatown Lake Reservation

Culture of India A family day of interactive programs, art, music and the opening of "Erasing Borders," an exhibit featuring contemporary Indian art. Children can get henna tattoos, participate in rangoli (a traditional Indian art form using colored powders, sands, and grains), and create craft toys. Saturday, 2:00 to 4:30. Hammond Museum and Japanese Stroll Garden

Nocturnal Insects Discover what goes "buzz" in the night. An entomyologist presents this program on the ecology of nocturnal flying insects. Saturday, 7:30. Ward Pound Ridge Reservation

Savage Grace The new movie, directed by Tom Kalin and starring Julianne Moore, tells the sordid tale of Barbara Baekeland's privileged but miserable life. Saturday and Sunday, multiple showings. Jacob Burns Film Center

Shakespeare Festival The annual Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival (above) opens with the production of Cymbeline. Bring a pre-theater picnic or purchase one on site. Reservations required. Saturday, 8:00. Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, Boscobel

Real Rough Diamonds The local band Real Rough Diamonds will play their unique blend of rock ‘n’ roll. Read more at crotonblog. Saturday, 9:30. Black Jacks, 498 Old Post Road, Croton-on-Hudson

Tools of the Farm Celebrate Father's Day by trying your hand at old-fashioned tools such as cross-cut saws, block and tackle, and planes and augers. Then chill out on a hayride. Sunday, 1:00 to 3:00. Muscoot Farm

Ecuadorian Heritage Celebration Enjoy ethnic food, music, dance, and other entertainment. Sunday, 10:00 to 7:00. Croton Point Park

Peekskill Cruise Take a cruise on the Hudson heading north towards West Point, passing under the Bear Mountain Bridge and past Highland Falls and Garrison Landing. Departs from the Peekskill Riverfront Green Park. Sunday, 12:30 to 3:30pm. Hudson Highland Cruises

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Summer of '72

If I still had some of the now-classic posters from my childhood home--"A Woman Without a Man is Like a Fish Without a Bicycle," "Question Authority"--they would look fabulous in this Croton abode. Built in 1972, the 2,100 square foot home has all the hallmarks of it's glorious era--an open floor plan, loads of windows, and a laid-back vibe. The 3 bedroom home has been renovated and features an updated kitchen. Located on lovely Colabough Pond Road in Croton's Mount Airy section, the 4 acre property abuts a huge tract of forever-wild state-owned land. While the taxes are relatively high at $17,681, the asking price strikes me as a relatively low. $750,000

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Fresh From the Farm

'Tis the season for succulent goodies from the ground. And there are plenty of wonderful markets full of nature's treats:

Where: John Jay High School, Rt. 121
When: Saturday, 8:30 to 2:00, through November
Website: Community Markets: Katonah

Mt. Kisco
Where: Mt. Kisco Train Station
When: Saturday, 9:00 to 2:00, through October
Website: Cabbage Hill Farm

Muscoot Farm
Where: Muscoot Farm
When: Sunday, 11:00 to 3:00, through October
Website: Muscoot Farm

Where: Main and Spring Streets, next to Market Square
When: Saturday, 8:30 to 2:00, through December
Website: Community Markets: Ossining

Where: Bank Street, between Main and Park
When: Saturday, 8:00 to 2:00, mid-June through November
Website: Peekskill Farmers Market

Where: Manville Road and Wheeler Avenue
When: Saturday, 8:30 to 1:00, through December
Website: Community Markets: Pleasantville

Stone Barns
Where: Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture
When: Friday and Saturday, 1:00 to 4:00
Website: Stone Barns

Where: Patriot's Park, Route 9
When: Saturday, 8:30 to 2:00, through November
Website: Community Markets: Tarrytown

Image: Hot Peppers Peekskill Farmers Market, by Tomkuehl

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Colonial Classic

The bucolic area of Huntersville, in southern Yorktown, is marked by it's natural beauty and lovely homes. This new listing is an area landmark, and a prime example of colonial style. Built in 1735, the exterior of the house boasts a double porch and chimneys on either end of the main structure. Inside, the 3,900 square foot, 4 bedroom home has wide-plank floors, exposed beams, and multiple fireplaces. The 4 acre property has a nice pool, as well as a 2-stall barn, paddock, and an outbuilding with a kitchenette and half bath. The house is steps from one of the area's most popular roads for walking, jogging, and biking. At $23,297, the taxes ain't cheap--but the asking price is a bargain compared to the Hot Property just down the road. $1,195,000
Houlihan Lawrence, Google Map, Live Search Map

Monday, June 9, 2008

Happy Anniversary to Me!

It's been exactly a year since I launched this blog. And what fun it's been. Thanks to my handy traffic counters, I can see that the number of unique visitors has steadily increased--the site now has a healthy group of regulars, and routinely gets a large number of newbie drop-ins, thanks to the magic of search engines. I've received a number of emails from viewers expressing their appreciation for the site, and it's great to know that people out there are finding it useful and informative. My one continuing disappointment is the near-total lack of comments--for a bunch of New Yorkers, you all are very shy about expressing your opinion. But so be it... Thanks to everyone for taking a look at the site. As always, any and all feedback and criticism is welcome.

Recent Sales and Deals

No previously-featured Hot Properties have gone to contract in the two weeks since my last update on May 27. That's a first since I started tracking deals. I was able to uncover data for just one recently sold Hot Property. That listing--one of my favorites--sold pretty quickly, and for the asking price.

Location: Cortlandt Manor
Featured: March 6, 2008
Asking Price: $569,000
Status: Sold for $569,000

Friday, June 6, 2008

Weekend Events

Activities and things to do this weekend in Northern Westchester:

Peekskill Open Studios The annual event invites the public into scores of artists' studios as well as area galleries, museums, and restaurants. Live music and art performances (including one by the EYE collaborative, right) will be held throughout the 3-day event. See Wednesday's post for more details. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Peekskill Arts Council

Classic Italian Cinema Festival Celebrate the film tradition of Italy with this series of classics by Fellini, Germi, Olmi, Pasolini, and De Sica. Saturday's feature is Divorce, Italian Style, Pietro Germi's comedy in which Marcello Mastroianni plays a bored Sicilian aristocrat who falls for a beautiful teen. Through June 25. Jacob Burns Film Center

Eco-Avengers Meet live animals and learn how your actions can help them in their natural habitats. Saturday, 1:00. Ward Pound Ridge Reservation

Art Adventures Families are invited to explore the number 300 in celebration of Ridgefield's 300th anniversary. Kids can participate in group projects and artist-led activities that will give visual form to the number 300. Saturday, 12:00 to 5:00. Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum

Chuck Mangione For more than five decades, Chuck Mangione's love affair with music has been characterized by his boundless energy, unabashed enthusiasm, and pure joy that radiates from the stage. Saturday, 8:00. Tarrytown Music Hall

The Art of Song The award-winning duo of Marigene Kettler and Melissa Alexander presents songs by Poulenc, Copland, Schubert, Strauss, and Rodrigo. Saturday, 7:30. Croton Free Library

Fat Tire Festival The 13th annual celebration of mountain biking includes organized rides for all ability levels, skills competitions, and the famous skinny skills contest. Sunday 11:00 to 4:00. Blue Mountain Reservation, Westchester Mountain Bike Association

Family Day Meet the artist Rebecca Emberley, whose illustrations are featured in the Learning Center. Activities include exploring the museum's exhibitions with hunt sheets and participating in art projects, such as creating collages and making an ABC book. Sunday, 1:00 to 4:00. Katonah Museum of Art

Childen's Storytelling in the Garden The museum's curator will read children's stories from 100 years ago. Sunday, 1:00. Merestead

Just Kidding Around Celebrate National Goat Week and learn more about these incredible animals. Create a craft to take home. Sunday, 1:00 to 3:00. Muscoot Farm

Water Canaries Coal miners used canaries to assess the quality of the air down in the mine before they entered. In lakes and ponds, aquatic invertebrates do the same thing for water quality. Explore these environmental indicators and learn all about them. Sunday, 1:00. Teatown Lake Reservation

Ridgefield Folk Hear the award-winning singer/songwriter Meg Hutchinson perform. Sunday, 2:00. Ridgefield Library

The Backyard Farmer This hands-on program for adults explores edible weeds and wildflowers. Sunday, 3:00. Hilltop Hanover Farm and Environmental Center

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Light and Airy, by the Lake

This 1930 cape has a nice cozy but contemporary feel. Exposed beams, lovely lines, and plenty of light give the 1,800 square foot, 3 bedroom house a warm, inviting feel. Set on 1.9 wooded acres not far from the village of Katonah, the house has access to the beach (and boating) at nearby Lake Katonah. Looks like a nice place to spend the summer--and winter, too. $689,000
Houlihan Lawrence, Google Map, Live Search Map