Thursday, May 31, 2012

"Rollin on the river"...or "comin down the mountain"

One of the greatest things about life in the Hudson Valley is all the great music festivals that happen all summer long!  We have always been known for a music scene because of Woodstock and Bethel Woods.  Woodstock these days doesn't have the strong music scene it once did and the weekend crowd that goes to Woodstock, all seems to be there to just SHOP!  People who come to buy property in Woodstock all seem to ask me where the best places to go for music are.  Depending on what shows are around or who is playing, sometimes things in Woodstock can really give people a let down impression, (good thing the homes there are still so GREAT)!
The Clearwater Festival is a really cool weekend music event that came from Pete Seiger's mission of cleaning up the Hudson River.  As a home owner on the Hudson, I am always grateful for all the years of work put in, (to this day) by Pete.  Pete Seiger is to the Hudson Valley what Bruce Springstein is to New Jersey!  The music festival is always full of amazing bands and also just alongside the Hudson River!  Read more about it all here...
Looking for more?
Woodstock radio station WDST puts on "Mountain Jam" this weekend!  It's always such a popular event and has a vibe similar to a smaller version of THE Woodstock concert years ago.  You can get a one day pass or a camping pass and enjoy four days of music!  This year will probably be extra special because of the passing of Levon Helm and all the incredible tributes expected!

Saturday, May 26, 2012


For about sixteen years not only did I refuse to eat meat, but had become one of the most picky eaters on the planet.  I was an adult who had the appetite of a spoiled brat!  When I moved to the Hudson Valley from NYC it got even easier to not eat this or that and pass judgement on the people who did.  Family and friends also had opinions about my food lifestyle..."oh, he won't eat THAT" was often said at family holiday dinners.  Sometimes it was "oh, come on, just try this, you will love it".  It was like the teenage me with the crazy hair colors and styles was now rebelling with FOOD. 
Funny looking back at that.  How LAME!  I started going to South America and trying to explain to some of the sweetest people in the world "no meat" was almost impossible.  It was usually a beautiful plate of vegetables with MEAT on it that I would pick around and be grossed out that it touched the rest of the plate.  I was a mess and knew it, but had to change this because I hated looking this way, (typical American Gringo ASS) to people in another country who I really loved so much so I started to try and just eat what I was served.  I found out, IT WAS GOOD!
Back in Kingston a new butcher had opened uptown.  It was organic meat.  I knew if I was going to start eating meat again THIS was the way to go.  I could still be the picky eater and start eating healthy meat again!  The first time I stopped in  to Fleisher's it just smelled so amazing.  I had no idea what to order or what anything in the store even was.  The owner Joshua Applestone suggested BEACON.  Clever of him.  NOBODY can say "no" to BEACON! 
It was AWESOME and not the greasy fatty salty stuff I remembered.  I started to go in to the store more for my weekly gentle meat fix.  I always asked, "what's that?" and they would always explain what I was buying and how I should cook it.  I was discovering meat the way it should be discovered...learned.
Over the years I have learned so much, and just from being a customer.  Fleisher's also offers butcher classes and owner Joshua Applestone even was on tv teaching Martha Stewart how to butcher a pig!
They offered a class a while ago to the public and I was almost signed up, but then saw "see the slaughter of the pig" on the sign and decided I couldn't.  I really do understand if you eat meat, you should see how it is killed, but all I think I can do is catch fish.  Somehow deep sea fishing and getting monster fish on the boat with blood and gross really is the line for me.  Weird.
I now have a routine.  Stop in to Fleisher's Thursday or Friday and stock up.  I can't go in there on Saturday...way too busy with "weekenders".  I'm beyond happy that the store is PACKED on Saturdays, but I like stopping in during the week way better.  I stop in and still ask the guys behind the counter, "what is THAT and how do I cook it" or "I LOVE those" and they just are always happy to suggest how they like to cook it.  It always feels like such an old fashioned way to buy food.  Talking to a vendor about their product...what a concept.  I always walk out of the store feeling like I didn't just "buy something" but had a way cool food experience!
Can't make it to the Kingston or Park Slope stores?  get the book!


Sunday, May 20, 2012

The Ulster County Fair and Woodstock properties!

One of the best things about owning Ulster County Real Estate is being able to be part of all the farmer's markets and different fairs during the summer!  The Ulster County Fair is a lot smaller than the Dutchess County Fair, but it's also more of a "classic" county fair.  It's a single price admission and that includes rides and shows.  This year the VILLAGE PEOPLE are playing!  I saw The Village People, (and CHARO) at the Dutchess County Fair a few years ago and they were a blast to see live! 
 Here is the Ulster County Fair website...
The fair is in New Paltz.  New Paltz is a really great town and owning Ulster County Real Estate there is not only great value, but also a really hip, cool, laid back lifestyle!
This is a great property I just previewed yesterday in New Paltz.  It can be hard to find land and the right home when looking in Ulster County Real Estate, but this one not only has a cool 50's style Catskill's retreat home in excellent condition, but is also on almost three acres of property!
If you are looking for Woodstock property, there are two Woodstock properties I previewed the other day and loved!  They are two completely different styles and prices, but each has that perfect Woodstock property buyers are looking for right now! 
This home had such great "Restoration Hardware" design and privacy, (over SIX private acres)! I wanted to move right in!
The second home is priced much less and for even MORE acreage, (SEVEN acres)!  The house has such a warm country feeling and all you hear are the waterfalls from the creek outside!  A PERFECT and AFFORDABLE Catskill getaway or permanent home!
If you are looking for Ulster County Real Estate or that perfect Catskills me now!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Life in my historic home...

I live in a home that was once a brick manufacturer along the Hudson River.  Kingston, NY once had many brick companies because the clay was perfect for making bricks.  I live where Goldrick bricks were once made and in Mr. Philip Goldrick's home.  Some information about him and the company is here on this site...
A few months ago I was asked by the Town of Saugerties to have my home on the  Saugerties historic home tour.  At first I said "no" mostly because I didn't think my home looked like other "historic" homes in the area and also because I really did not know what to expect.  The people on the commission addressed all my concerns and made me feel like it would be a great worthwhile experience. 
Being a Realtor I looked at the opportunity to also meet possible future clients.  Expecting about 200 people, I didn't want to just hand each person a card and had to think of a more creative way to get everyond my contact information.  After a lot of thinking, I came up with making chocolate Goldrick brick bars with my card attached to the wraper!
My neighbors Marion Boxer and Jason Boxer found out about the tour and really were not happy we were doing it, (well, they never really ARE happy about ANYTHING).  I explained to them that there would be a small bus taking small groups to the house all day and it would never be crowded, but they told me, "we have been on these tours and they are very invasive.  The people go through your drawers, destroy property, and have no respect for the home owners".  They had a survey done and started to park their cars in a way to make the whole tour difficult for any flow of parking.  As the tour got closer I started to wonder if they had a good point and started to get anxious about my descision.  Were the (peronoid) Boxers right?  Was this going to be the nightmare they promised?
Nothing could have been further from the truth.  On the day of the tour, small groups of people were bussed in.  The bus had no problems turning around, (even after the Boxers did all they could to block off my road).  People all day were just beyond grateful for my hospitality, respectful, and cociderate of my home and really loved learning it's history from all the voulenteers working.  Saugerties even had a woman, (Anna Serravallo) who was in her 90s and worked in the brickyards and sat on my porch telling the most fascinating stories of life back then!
One thing we have always known about Goldrick bricks was that they were used in building the original Yankee Stadium!  Looking online you can find the bricks from the stadium selling for big money!

What a great expierence and honor it was to be part of such a cool event!  It was pretty strange having groups of people walk through my home with voulenteers telling them all about the home I live in...sureal.
My house...

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The City of Hudson

The City of Hudson is now the latest cool, hip, trendy, and fun place to be!  One of the bloggers at Coldwell Banker Village Green Realty just wrote a great blog about the real estate market in Hudson and how while opportunities to buy may have been missed, there is still PLENTY of properties with value to be found at a great price! 
It really was just a quiet sleepy town with some cool antique and junk shops a few years ago and needed some work.  The City of Hudson is one of the few towns on the side of the river that Amtrak reaches from New York City which makes it a really perfect weekend place for second home buyers.
Here is a photo album of the city of Hudson...
There are plenty of places to stay in the City of Hudson before deciding to buy property there.  Friends of mine own "The Inn at Hudson" and it's a really special place to stay in town...
If you think the City of Hudson is for you and want to find the perfect property for you, give me a call or look for City of Hudson homes on my website...