The Economic Power of Open Space

The Rondout.

By Arthur Zaczkiewicz

As you may have read, a recent study revealed that open space in the nearby Shawangunks — Minnewaska, Sam’s Point and Mohonk preserves — feeds over $12 million to the local economy each year. The money comes from the 392,000 or so annual visitors to these areas. This spotlights an important trend: open space has value.

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Shining The Light

At the half year point of 2010, would like to get feedback on what grass root effort this year has inspired you the most.

It has been an especially productive year amidst the hardships. We at are particularly fond of The Hodge Food For Thought Program, Queens Galley’s  Hudson Valley  Hunger Banquet, Kingston, NY’s Neighborhood Watch, The Citywide Clean-up and Lawn Sale effort  and KURA to name a few.

Help us to shine the light and share with us the many others, seen or unseen.

Kingston’s Role in a Global Movement

One of the sessions last night. Photo by Norman Stockwell of WORT radio.

By Arthur Zaczkiewicz

The convergence of activists working for human rights, health care reform, climate change, and social justice, among others is happening right now in Detroit, Mich. Over 20,000 people have flocked to the Motor City this week for the US Social Forum to exchange ideas, participate in people’s movement assemblies (PMAs) and attend (and present) 1,000s of workshops with topics ranging from grassroots networking to change immigration law to learning how to mobilize citizens for better access to public funds.

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Come On Get Happy

The folks at Kingston Digital Corridor have scheduled their montly mixer on Wednesday, June 30th at Keegan Ales in Kingston.  Join them from 6:00pm – 7:30pm. It sounds like fun!

“Calling all independents, creatives, and digerati! Get out of your pyjamas and bring your non-digital selves over to Keegan Ales!

Out of focus? We are, too! Let’s come together and inspire some collaborative thought!

Our goal in hosting the ‘KDC Happier Hour!’ every last Wednesday of the month is to get all of you talented local yokels together so you can meet others of your species, talk shop (or not), share resources, and by all means, have some fun!

Seed Money for Parks

The dusk sky at Hasbrouck Park.

By Arthur Zaczkiewicz

The spat between the mayor and lawmakers over spending money on a gazebo at T.R. Gallo Park in the Rondout, as reported by the Daily Freeman today, can be easily resolved.

According to the Freeman, Mayor James Sottile is miffed over a decision by the Finance/Economic Development Committee to table — for a second time — his $4,000 request for installing the gazebo.

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South Pine Street Garden Makes First Food Donation to Queens Galley

Farmer Frank and Rebecca Martin making a delivery of turnip greens to the Queens Galley from the South Pine Street Garden. Photo credit: Kevin McEvoy

The South Pine Street Childrens/Community Garden off of Greenkill Avenue in Ward 5 made a large food donation of Turnip Greens to Queens Galley.

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Garden Volunteers: We Need You

By Arthur Zaczkiewicz

Earlier this month I attended a conference in North Carolina relating to the national effort behind the local “Healthy Kingston for Kids” project, which aims to reverse childhood obesity through environmental and policy change. It was a “mind-opening” experience to meet others working on the same issues from places such as Buffalo, Oakland and Chicago.

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Drumming for Change

The Kingston Drum Circle is a newly formed group of drummers and percussionists who will be meeting weekly at various parks this summer to build community, express musical creativity and to connect with the earth through ancient tribal rhythms. The first gathering will be this Friday at 6 p.m. at the Academy Green Park on Albany Avenue and Maiden Lane.

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Breaking the Chain

Kingston's new "Harmacy". Poetic justice, as recalled by Rebecca Martin
Kingston’s new “Harmacy”. Poetic justice, as recalled by Rebecca Martin

By Arthur Zaczkiewicz

Did you see this pic of the new CVS on Rebecca Martin’s Facebook page? The “poetic justice” as described in the caption is spot on. A chain store’s impact on a community can have long-term negative effects. Most obviously is the fact that profits generated by a chain store aren’t reinvested into the local economy as is the case with local, independent businesses. This is at the core of why shopping and buying local contributes to the creation of a sustainable community.

If you have a minute, please comment here on the local businesses you support:

Rondout Tours Scheduled

Looking for something to do later this month? How about immersing into the local history scene? This just in from the Friends of Historic Kingston (includes a few calendar items):


KINGSTON – The monthly walking tour of the Rondout National Historic District, offered by Friends of Historic Kingston, will take place on Saturday, June 26, departing at 11 a.m. from the Kingston Heritage Area Visitors Center, 20 Broadway.

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Take a Healthy and Green Pledge

By Arthur Zaczkiewicz


Long time, no hear – from me. Sorry I’ve been away for so long.

Much has happened since I’ve edited and posted to this blog. I’ve got much on my mind. One thing weighing me down is the weight of Kingston’s children, who are above average in regard to being overweight and obese. That’s dark news for their current health and their future health. I don’t have to tell you that obesity leads to heart disease, cancer and other ailments.

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Design Charrette Will Re-Imagine King’s Inn Site

One of the City of Kingston’s most notorious derelict properties will be the subject of a July forum, designed to let architects, city dwellers and business owners envision a re-birth of the property.

The King’s Inn site, located at 615 Broadway, will be the subject of a design charrette set for July 16th at 721 Media Center.  Sponsored by the Business Alliance of Kingston, the Upstate New York Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council and others, the event will follow the conventions of design charrettes across the nation, which typically invite architects, neighborhood residents, business owners and interested others to work in small teams to craft a preliminary concept for a new building.

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