Summer services at the Beaverkill Community Church on Craigie Clair Road continue this summer, through Labor Day Weekend. Every Sunday at 10:00am. Here’s a collection of a few of the sermons so far this year…
Summer services will commence again this season – every Sunday through Labor Day Weekend, beginning this Sunday May 30. As we did last summer – until further notice services – will be held outside the church on the back lawn. All are welcome, things usually get going around 10am. For the moment, might be a good idea to bring your own chair. Mary Hall will again be presiding, with various other FOBC regulars presenting sermons on topics related to life on the river and life in general. Transcripts of all sermons will also be posted on this site. Any questions, please email us. The church is located on Craigie Clair Road about a half mile downstream from the covered bridge.
Local Beaverkill Valley residents Patricia Adams and Janet Nelson both spotted the same wildflowers blooming this Spring along the river…their reflections on the origin and identification of this species below….
FROM PATRICIA ADAMS:
I first noticed them about four years ago. Pretty little yellow flowers springing up along the creek that follows Campsite Road and flows into the Beaverkill just below Duke and Kate’s house. I called them Trout Lilies at first, but soon learned that was incorrect. Then I called them Primroses, which isn’t exactly wrong—they are in the Primrose family.
I had a hard time identifying them because I had seen very few over the years. But last spring, Mermer Blakeslee told me they were Cowslips, which was a common flower in England but has declined over the years. These flowers had been planted here by Hazel Kelly, perhaps as a reminder of her childhood in England. John Kelly confirmed this (and also confirmed that they are Cowslips, not Primroses).
The Kelly’s have a wonderful house up in Larroway Hollow, that is totally ‘off the grid’. No electricity, delicious cold spring fed water beside the house, a hand built stone and wood out building, and wonderful gardens that Hazel and John developed over the years they spent summers there. The Cowslips have proliferated downstream, along what Timothy Foote told me is the ‘Schoolhouse Brook”, because it flowed down from Larroway Hollow past the one room Beaverkill School.(now gone with a modern house on the site) The stream crosses under the road just where Campsite Road intersects with Beaverkill Road.
These beautiful little flowers are throughout our part of the Beaverkill Valley – but you don’t see them on other brooks or rivers. There are none along Berry Brook or over on the Willoweemoc. The ones you see have traveled downstream from the Kelly’s and taken residence along the river, the roads and through the campsite on the east side of the Beaverkill.
I checked on Cowslips. They are native British wildflowers and are actually named after cow ‘piles. They flourished on English farmland back in the days when livestock was an important source of fertilizer. As farming methods ‘improved’,by plowing old grasslands and using herbicides, they declined. Cowslips provide nectar in the Spring, and attract bees, moths and butterflies. They can be eaten raw in salads or cooked as a vegetable. The flowers can be eaten fresh with cream or brewed into tea.
These flowers are a gift from Hazel and a reminder of things that grow in England.
FROM JANET NELSON:
Patricia had told us there were cowslips growing along Schoolhouse Brook, seeded from Hazel Kelly’s garden in Larroway hollow. The Cowslips I had known as a child in England had grown in the open meadows rather than in shady woods and a little research on the internet proved we were right . Cowslip flowers are bell-shaped and are a rich yellow color; they have a distinct apricot smell.
Oxlip flowers are a paler yellow and open more like a primrose, all three are in the primula family and have confusing similarities. We were not able to find where else oxlips grow wild in the US. In England, cowslips grow where cows graze, and oxslips are found mostly in the eastern counties of Essex and Suffolk. They also grow in Norway and western Russia but don’t seem to be widespread elsewhere.
The flowers we have here along the Beaverkill look to be Oxlips, rather than Cowslips. Both are rare and even endangered in some places. So, we’re lucky to have whatever they are- bright yellow spring flowers – along with the daffodils, the first spring bloom.
The Catskill Fly Fishing Center & Museum (located on Old Route 17 between Livingston Manor and Roscoe) will host the inauguration of the 2021 fishing season this weekend – on Saturday April 3 from 10am til 4pm. In addition to all the usual great exhibits and reference materials relating to the rich history of fly fishing in our region, the Museum offers fishing access to the Willowemoc Creek, and lots of other fishermen and fisherwomen to hang with and enjoy the sport.
New this weekend is a special tribute to world-renowned master fly tier – Dave Brandt. Dave’s work desk is beautifully recreated by Cy Amundson and Bruce Concors.
Stop by this weekend, or anytime – the Gift Shop and Museum are open all season, Friday through Monday, 10am til 4pm.
As Springtime looms and the COVID (fingers crossed) subsides, we’re looking forward to more new businesses opening up in or near our town centers and riverbanks. Latest addition is “The Walk In” sandwich and coffee shop, just a bit up the road from downtown Livingston Manor (directly across the street from the Brandenburg Bakery building). Launched this year by Manor newcomers Lily Price and Erin Ellis, Lily describes where they’ve been and why they’re here….
I grew up in Savannah GA and have worked in the hospitality industry all my life. I met Erin through industry friends about 8 years ago after she had moved to Savannah and worked her way up from a salad girl to chef de cuisine of a really wonderful fine dining spot in Savannah – Local 11ten. Erin grew up in the industry as her parents owned and operated multiple restaurants in Bardstown, Kentucky. All 5 of the Ellis kids worked in the family restaurants as soon as they were of age to peel a carrot. Erin’s dad went to the Culinary Institute of America and so did she. When we started dating after a couple years of knowing each other, I was traveling very intensely and returning to Savannah every so often and told Erin that if we were going to be in a relationship, we had to keep traveling. So we decided to move to Hanoi, Vietnam in 2016 and then to Porto, Portugal in 2017. Erin was opening crew for a few restaurants in Vietnam and I was working in property management. In Portugal, Erin worked at a kick ass restaurant called Flow and I remained in international property management. We found upstate NY after moving back to NYC in late 2017. Our friend and roommate had purchased a home that year in Napanoch, invited us for the weekend, and we left on Sunday having bought our little 500 square foot abode in Loch Sheldrake. It was only natural to discover Livingston Manor soon after as this seems to be ‘The Place’.
The Walk In is how we eat every day and is representative of us essentially inviting this community to our breakfast, lunch and dinner table. The goal here is to nourish the community as we nourish ourselves, to prepare things maybe just one step more artfully than most people care for themselves at home. We went back to our absolute fundamentals to open this restaurant – my great grandmother’s biscuit recipe, tons of influences from Erin’s parents’ first place Lovin’ Oven, etc. Maybe we will do some insane fine dining thing later, but The Walk In is who we really are. Like maybe we drink Dom Perignon on occasion but really we’re just a couple of beers cooled in a riverbed. We kind of want to just become more of what we already are, just us.
The Walk In is located at 67 Main Street – Livingston Manor NY. For now you can follow their progress on Instagram @thewalkinmanor.
Welcome to the Valley, Elizabeth Hope Williams and Johnny Anderes, founders and operators of The High Meadow Project. No strangers to the neighborhood, Elizabeth spent many summers here with her family and they chose the Beaverkill Valley Inn for their wedding festivities, Elizabeth and Johnny migrated to Lew Beach from Chicago, with three offspring in tow, as the pandemic descended last year. They have since launched a fabulous addition to the area’s dining options, now housed in the legendary (and often mysterious) Lew Beach venue – The Pub. Located on the northeast corner of Lew Beach’s bustling downtown intersection, The High Meadow Project initially offered socially-distanced outdoor dining (right by the river), and has remained open four nights a week during the winter months for local take-out. We’re all looking forward to the return of on site dining, and the reopening of The Pub’s intimate bar, once the weather allows.
Chef Johnny Anderes’ interest in food stems from his grandfather, an international commercial pilot who picked up a passion for French cooking during his travels overseas. Spending long periods of time together, Anderes experienced French cooking with local produce at an early age—an influence that is unmistakably present in his sustainable and family-friendly approach to modern cuisine. Johnny was most recently the Executive Chef for the Chicago Athletic Association, spearheading the menus for the award-winning Cherry Circle Room, The Game Room, The Drawing Room, and The Milk Room.
Wishing all of our members – and everyone who lives and visits the Beaverkill Valley – a healthy and happier New Year!
The FOBC will be back in the Spring with its usual slate of activities and events to share with the membership. This year’s officers are in place and we currently have two active committees which we encourage everyone to contact and/or join if you’re interested in being involved.
For current updates follow us on Instagram – @friendsofbeaverkill.
Josh Grier - President
Chris Kissock - Vice President
Alissa Shipp - Treasurer
Steve Levine - Secretary
BEAVERKILL COMMUNITY CHURCH COMMITTEE:
Mary Hall (firstname.lastname@example.org)
COVERED BRIDGE CAMPSITE COMMITTEE
Josh Grier (email@example.com)
In compliance with CDC and New York State guidelines, and exercising an “abundance of caution” by keeping safe and distanced this season, we’ve canceled our annual Candlelight Caroling – traditionally held on Christmas Eve at the Beaverkill Community Church. We wish everyone an enjoyable holiday and the FOBC looks forward to reactivating our usual group events in 2021.
Legendary angler and renowned author Austin “Mac” Francis made a “virtual” appearance on the Willowemoc Creek on September 27. Mac was the subject of an extended interview with Peter Crosby – a highlight of the Emerging Anglers Dinner held in Livingston Manor at the Catskills Fly Fishing Center and Museum.
Watch the interview here, with the pre-imminent expert on Catskill fly fishing: