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Mt. Peter Ski Area opened for the season - Warwick,NY -

  • 2 photos
  • It had already been snowing on the mountain because the snow blowers at Mount Peter were operating as often as temperatures permit. And then Mother Nature cooperated last week in a big way with a major snow storm. And so last weekend, Saturday and Sunday, December 19-20 Mt. Peter Ski Area opened for the 2019-2021 season. Initially it was for pass holders only followed by a general open-to-the-public day on Wednesday, December 23. The tubing hill also opened to the public last Sunday. Opening around mid-December is not unusual for the ski area. But this year was different. Skiers and snow boarders were handed “Welcome to Mount Peter” fliers describing new protocols for this season as a result of the COVID-19 rules. For example face masks were required at all times except when actively skiing, snowboarding or while eating or drinking. And social distancing must be practiced at all times. But on opening day and throughout the weekend, there was a huge turnout with everyone following the rules and still having a great time on the slopes. To insure additional safety for this season Mount Peter also installed ultraviolet (UV) lights across the property. The UV lights are Sterile-Bright, a product of Ultra-Tech Lighting, which uses a multi-tiered approach to surface and air sterilization using a combination of powerful UV light that directly eliminates and sterilizes surfaces and spaces from pathogens. It is described as environmentally friendly and safe for all ages. The lights were installed in Mount Peter’s main lodge as well as its sunrise lodge and at the tubing hill and rental location to disinfect all equipment prior to the next guest. Once a space is treated, the pathogen-free environment can be sustained as long as proper procedures are followed. The facility also has a portable hand-held unit controlled via Bluetooth technology that can sterilize areas such as chair lifts, bathrooms, food services areas, and locker rooms in as few as five minutes and leaves no chemical residue behind. This season Mt. Peter will celebrate its 85th year of continuous operation. It is well known throughout the Greater Metropolitan area for its friendly family atmosphere, free beginner ski and snowboard school, great snowmaking, expert grooming, a terrain park and top-notch racing and development programs. “The Friendly One,” as Mt. Peter is known, is the oldest operating ski area in New York State, and one of the few remaining family operated ski areas in the country. Professional PSIA (Professional Ski Instructors of America) and AASI (American Association of Snowboard Instructors) will take the first-time beginner up on the slopes and teach to his or her needs and age. Almost every weekend Mt. Peter hosts a special fun event for the entire family. Conditions, hours of operation, special events and other notices are reported daily on a recording at 986-4940. Select No. 1 for the snow report or visit www.mtpeter.com
  • 12/20/2020
  • Album ID: 2272779
  • Photos by Roger Gavan

Warwick resident’s Christmastime lights returns - Warwick,NY - 12/11/20

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  • With more than 50,000 lights and music, no Town of Warwick home has attracted more tourists at Christmastime than the home of Vincent Poloniak on Spanktown Road in Florida, NY. It takes Poloniak and a few friends about three weeks to complete the annual project. But last year, Poloniac had a medical issue and his doctor ordered that he just rest and postpone any arduous tasks including the Christmas display. But thankfully he promised to resume the spectacular decoration at Christmastime 2020 And it’s bigger and better than ever. It’s also a welcome relief for families that have had to curtail some Christmas traditions. The only request is that visitors wear masks and practice social distancing. . Poloniak and his wife, Joan, now deceased, began decorating their home for Christmas back in 1973, when their daughter Paula was only five years old. “It all started with a Santa we purchased in Newburgh,” he recalled, “and then we would add to our decorations each year. But I got wild in the 1990s and that developed into what you see today.” When he was once asked how long he expected to be doing this, Poloniak answered, “I can’t stop now. Too many people look forward to it. And I love seeing the children and how happy and surprised they are by the display." He also didn’t expect to run out of new visitors. “The children who came here years ago,” he said, “now bring their children.” Visiting Spanktown Road to enjoy his spectacular display has become a Christmastime tradition in the Town of Warwick. The lights are turned on at 4 p.m.
  • 12/13/2020
  • Album ID: 2272490
  • Photos by Roger Gavan

Local residents celebrate Menorah lighting - Warwick,NY - 12/10/20

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  • Just like last year, the weather was cool but not uncomfortable on Thursday evening, December 10, the first night of Hanukkah, the beginning of the eight-day Jewish Festival of Lights. But unlike last year and following COVID-19 restrictions, a smaller crowd of about 20 residents, including local officials along with Santa, all wearing masks, gathered in Lewis Park as Moshe Schwartzberg, owner of Wolfies restaurant and Forever Jewelers,. began officiating at the Menorah lighting of the first candle, a ceremony he has conducted for the past 27 years. He began by telling the story of how the Temple of Jerusalem was built and then how it was about to be rededicated following its recapture after occupation and defilement by the pagan Syrian-Greeks under Antiochus IV. A small band of fighters, led by Judah Maccabee, he explained, fought to preserve the Jewish religion and culture and their right to worship God. Although greatly outnumbered by a much larger and more professional army they recaptured the Holy Temple, which had been defiled with idol worship and pagan sacrifices. When the Maccabees sought to rededicate the temple, however, they found only one small cruse of oil to kindle the eternal light. Miraculously, Schwartzberg explained, because God was pleased with what they had accomplished, the oil lasted for eight days. And that provided enough time for the holy oil to be replenished. Before lighting the first candle he read the sacred prayers, first in English so that everyone would understand, and then in Hebrew, according to the tradition of the ceremony. “Blessed are you Hashem our God King of the universe,” Schwartzberg read aloud, “who has kept us alive, sustained us and brought us to this season . . .” And then he repeated in Hebrew, “Baruch ata Adonai . . .” Visitors were later treated to refreshments including traditional latkes and donuts, Although not exactly a Hanukkah tradition, the crowd, especially the children, appeared to enjoy another surprise visit by Santa. And pointing to the Crèche and Menorah sitting side by side and the lighted Christmas trees on the hill, Schwartzberg repeated his frequent comment, “The empty space is for the atheists.”
  • 12/13/2020
  • Album ID: 2272483
  • Photos by Roger Gavan

Warwick Chamber to host virtual Holiday mixe - Warwick, NY - 12/1/20

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  • The Warwick Valley Chamber of Commerce invites members, guests and friends of the community to toast the holiday season together in the comfort of their own home or office setting when the popular Applewood Winery hosts a “Virtual Holiday Wine Tasting” next Tuesday evening, December 15 at 6 p.m. Participants will have an opportunity to bond with other business professionals from around the region while enjoying and learning first-hand about two Applewood Winery selections: New York State Merlot and Wawayanda White. Guests can also get creative pairing with their own personal crudité or cheese platters. And festive attire is optional. "We at Applewood Winery have just entered our 26th year,” said Applewood Winery Owner Michele Hull. ”When we first started we had two goals in mind: to make some really good wines and ciders and to have as much fun as possible doing so, I like to think we are achieving both. We love what we do and we love our customers and their continued support.” Applewood is one of the oldest working farms in the historic Hudson Valley. The wines and ciders at Applewood Winery are made on premise from their own vineyards, orchards and from across New York State. In addition, they make fruit wines and the award-winning Naked Flock Hard Cider. Their hours of operation are Wednesday thru Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The “Virtual Holiday Wine Tasting Mixer” event is part of a new series of online mixers, educational seminars and workshops offered by The Warwick Valley Chamber of Commerce. Tickets include two bottles of wine from Applewood Winery and access to the virtual tasting zoom event. The cost to attend this special social occasion is $35 for members, local chamber members and their guests, and $40 for non-members. Wine will be available for registered guests to pick up at the Winery. To purchase tickets for the Zoom event, guests must visit www.warwickcc.org or contact The Chamber via email: info@warwickcc.org.
  • 12/5/2020
  • Album ID: 2272162
  • Photos by Roger Gavan

Winslow receives $25,000 grant - Warwick,NY - 11/24/20

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  • On November 24 Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus and Community Development Director Nicole Andersen announced that nine municipalities will receive a total of more than $1 million through the 2021 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG). The Town of Warwick recipient was Winslow Therapeutic Riding Center, which received a $25,000 grant to continue increasing its Adult Day Program for adults with severe disabilities residing in Orange County. The Adult Day Program at Winslow, a 100 acre facility just off Route 17A between Bellvale and Mt. Peter, is held five days a week, year-round, with the exception of holidays. Each session is divided into three sections of equine-assisted activities and therapies, small animal husbandry, healthy living and nutrition, as well as additional independent living skills and activities. Research shows that therapeutic riding promotes strength, increases flexibility, develops balance, improves coordination, improves circulatory and respiratory functions, boosts self-confidence, builds self-esteem, fosters independence, and increases social skills. Therapeutic Riding Instructors certified by the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship, Intl. (PATH Intl.) and Winslow’s Adult Day Program Specialists track each participant’s progress. “We are very grateful for this Orange County Community Development grant,” said, Sue Ferro, executive director of Winslow Therapeutic Riding Center. “Our Adult Day Program is much needed in Orange County and like all our programs at Winslow, provides individuals with opportunities to interact with a number of different animals, strengthen their independent living skills, increase overall health, and improve additional skills including but not limited to social interaction, time management, problem-solving, and caring and empathy for others.” For additional information or to make a contribution visit https://www.winslow.org/
  • 11/30/2020
  • Album ID: 2271903
  • Photos by Roger Gavan

Eleventh annual Small Business Saturday - Warwick,NY - 11//28/20

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  • On Saturday, November 28, with temperatures in the mid-50s, it was what downtown merchants call an “open door” day. And on that particular day, the 11th annual "Small Business Saturday," a campaign launched by American Express, shoppers came out in droves to Warwick’s downtown business district. But because of COVID-19 restrictions, many shopkeepers or their employees were stationed at those entrances to make sure shoppers were wearing masks and to limit the number of people in the store. And the visitors understood the rules and cooperated. Merchants reported excellent sales and a steady flow of traffic, not only for Saturday but also for Friday, when many of the shops offered extra incentives. Small Business Saturday, sandwiched between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, was created to attract shoppers to local businesses nationwide. “We’ve had lots of traffic this weekend,” said Nicole Repose, owner of Etched in Time Engraving. “It’s been very good and our customers, who waited outside to enter our store in limited numbers and keep everyone safe, were understanding and very cooperative.” Many of the shoppers deliberately shopped in the downtown business district to show their support for small business.. The good turnout was welcome since during this holiday season some of the Home for the Holidays traditional attractions such as the free horse and wagon rides had to be canceled. Business owners, however, have always cited the many advantages of shopping local including personal service, saving fuel and time, free parking, avoiding unnecessary aggravation and fueling the local economy. A viable downtown business district benefits the entire community.
  • 11/29/2020
  • Album ID: 2271871
  • Photos by Roger Gavan

Wickham Works Holiday Maker Market at Lewis Park - Warwick,NY - 11/27/20

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  • They’re on the move. Four years ago the Town of Warwick had completely renovated its event facility, the Quality of Life Building, created by correction officers when it operated as the former Mid Orange Correctional facility, and renamed it “Wickham Woodlands Manor.” That year a month long “Made Local” initiative kicked off with the Wickham Works’ Holiday Maker Market at Wickham Woodlands Manor. The local artisans returned to Wickham Woodlands the following year and in the next two years, held the event inside at the Warwick Valley Community Center. “This year,” said Melissa Shaw-Smith, creative director at Wickham Works,” we had to hold the Love Local Wickham Works Holiday Maker Market outdoors. And Lewis Park was a perfect location for our annual event.” This year’s Holiday Maker Market was held on Friday and Saturday, November 27-28. That Saturday also happened to be “Small Business Saturday,” which, along with good weather, helped bring out a large number of visitors. All shoppers, however, were required to wear masks and keep safe distance. The Thanksgiving Weekend event featured 20 vendors with hand crafted holiday gift items including clothing, body care products, jewelry, blown glass ornaments, metal arts, leather and turned wooden goods, ceramics, holiday decorations and fresh wreaths, art made from reclaimed materials, and more. A $3 entry fee was collected to help support the Warwick Historical Society and the Warwick Valley Community Center.. “We thank everyone,” said Smith, “who joined us this weekend to support our local artists and artisans and the non-profit organizations the Warwick Historical Society, Wickham Works and the Warwick Valley Community Center.”
  • 11/29/2020
  • Album ID: 2271869
  • Photos by Roger Gavan

Modified Annual Christmas Tree lighting - Warwick,NY - 11/28/20

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  • Last year’s record crowd, estimated at over 500 parents, grandparents and children, gathered in Lewis Park t for Warwick’s annual Christmas Tree lighting despite temperatures in the mid teens. They would have much appreciated this year’s mild temperature, around 50 degrees, on Friday evening, November 27. But as a result of COVID-19 restrictions, less than 50 spectators, wearing masks and keeping a safe distance, were assembled on High Street. The annual event is sponsored by the Warwick Volunteer Fire Department. Absent in this year’s abbreviated ceremony was the large group of students from the Warwick Valley High School Chorus Program and members of the Meistersingers who treat the audience to a selection of traditional Christmas songs. But the guest speakers were on hand and for those who couldn’t attend, the entire event was livestreamed and available on Facebook. Warwick Fire Department President Melissa Stevens welcomed visitors and introduced guest speakers. The ceremony began with an invocation offered by Warwick United Methodist Church Pastor Rev. Jennifer Morrow followed by brief remarks by Warwick Town Supervisor Michael Sweeton and Mayor Michael Newhard. Both officials explained the importance of keeping everyone safe and thanking the members of the Fire Department for continuing the tradition during these difficult times. And they wished everyone a Merry Christmas. Stevens then led the small crowd in the traditional countdown to the tree lighting. And once again, Santa, traveling in a modern fire apparatus, made his usual early surprise visit, limited this year to a drive by instead of the usual handing out of goodies to the children. The Historical Society of the Town of Warwick has helped the Warwick Fire Department continue its long tradition by graciously providing the magnificent evergreen, just outside its Old School Baptist MeetingHouse. This year a smaller tree, which is intended to replace the very tall and difficult to decorate tree, was also lit. And it served as a good substitute during a brief glitch, soon resolved, in the lighting on the larger tree.
  • 11/29/2020
  • Album ID: 2271867
  • Photos by Roger Gavan

Warwick Gardeners decorate Railroad Green - Warwick,NY - 11/20/20

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  • Like many popular events ushering in the holiday season this year, the traditional lighting ceremony at Railroad Green could have been canceled during the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions. However, once again members of the Warwick Valley Gardeners decorated Railroad Green and the planter to kick off the holiday season. And on Friday evening, November 20, a smaller than usual crowd of local residents, wearing masks and practicing social distancing, gathered on the Green to witness the annual lighting event. The ceremony began with traditional Christmas carols like Jingle Bells and Silent Night sung by four members, also wearing masks and keeping a six foot distance, of the Warwick Valley High School Choir directed by music teacher Noreen Hanson. This year, the Warwick Valley Gardeners selected “Joy to the World,” as the theme for its Winter Project. Laurie Unick, president of The Gardeners, served as Chair of the event. Cathy Garofalo, executive VP and chair of the Railroad Green garden, did the countdown for the lighting. Village of Warwick Mayor Michael Newhard, reminded those present that this is a very special year and a most important time to give some joy to our neighbors He stated that Warwick is a very special place and that although we can’t share holiday events the way we usually do, everyone who walks by Railroad Green will see that. He praised the Warwick Gardeners for all they do throughout the year and said, “Thank you from the bottom of my heart.” Established in 1992, the Warwick Valley Gardeners Club is a member the Federated Garden Clubs of New York State, Inc. and the National Council of State Garden Clubs.
  • 11/22/2020
  • Album ID: 2271588
  • Photos by Roger Gavan
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