I hope this email finds you safe and dry after another challenging week.
Please remember that the Fireworks and Concert Event originally scheduled to take place tonight, Friday, September 3rd, at the Ossining Waterfront HAS BEEN CANCELLED. Read the press release regarding the cancellation here.
We are so grateful for the incredible work of our police, fire, highway, ambulance and public works staff who helped us weather another historic storm this past week. Many of them were also called in to offer mutual aid to some of our neighboring municipalities who got hit much harder than we did, and we thank them for that as well. Their professionalism and courage never cease to amaze me. Our hearts go out to those devastated by Ida.
On another note, we were so excited to learn that one of Ossining’s own, Police Detective Jeff Chavez, was recognized this week as a 2021 40-Under-40 honoree by the International Association of Chiefs of Police. It is wonderful to see wider recognition of something we all know well -- we have some of the very best first responders around!
One more note about storms before we get to the fun stuff! Westchester County is currently soliciting input from residents as it updates our county’s Hazard Mitigation Plan. Click here to take a survey to help the County determine what sorts of activities it needs to undertake to help reduce the risk of injury or property damage from natural disasters like the one we just experienced.
Moving on, because we decided to cancel tonight’s very large event, we are also happy to report that, with our partners, we will be able to offer one last Food Truck Friday/Summer Concert to end this great series before fall weather fully descends upon us! Next Friday, September 10, we’ll have some of your favorite food trucks and our Craft Beverage Corral down at the waterfront starting at 4pm, and Soul Sacrifice will perform from 6pm-8pm. Once again, we are so, so thankful for our partners in this series who really helped make it all possible: the Greater Ossining Chamber of Commerce, Sing Sing Kill Brewery, Mike Risko Music, our sound man Keith Heilmann, our recreation superintendent Bill Garrison, our Town Parks department, Brian Sheridan from Hothouse Design, Victoria Cafarelli in my office, and our sponsors Mark Seiden Realty, Robison, Open Door Family Medical Center, Matero Fine Jewelry and Grace Lane Kennels. And this week, we are super extra thankful for everyone’s (including the band’s!) flexibility. Stay tuned for the food truck and craft beverage line-up, but you know it’s all going to be delish!
In other fun news, HORAC Ministries is having a Labor Day Community Fun Day this Monday from noon till 5 PM. Join in for a family-friendly day of fun and fellowship!
Congrats to the Ossining Schools for having a successful first day in spite of the storm and a two hour delay! And good luck to Briarcliff students who are starting next week. If you have little ones who could use some homework help (or just a safe, enriching place to hang out till you get home from work), remember that OUFSD is partnering with the Recreation Department to provide an after school program with homework help and enrichment activities every school day from 3-6 PM. Click here for more details and to register.
Car Free Day, coming up on Wednesday, September 22, will be here before you know it! Planning is ongoing and we are looking for local businesses to participate. Pedestrians and cyclists are excellent customers - the ability to pause and discover new businesses is higher on foot, when you are not zooming by on your way to something else! If you are a local brick & mortar business that would like to support this initiative, please fill out this Google form, let us know what you might like to offer patrons as a reward for participating (for example, $1 off any purchase of $10 or more; a stamp on a frequent customer card, etc. Be creative!), and we will provide a poster for you to hang in your business and add your establishment to our promotional efforts.
If you have input for the Comprehensive Plan, please make sure to participate by September 17. This phase of the public outreach component is coming to a close soon. Outreach boards will be making their last rounds at some North State Road businesses and the Ossining Community Center this week and next week. Right now, visit Polished Spa Nails and next week other local North State Road businesses - we will share the locations in my update and on social media - to let us know your big ideas for the Town or what you would like to see on our main business corridor, North State Road. Definitely throw in a pedicure too - I highly recommend some self-care after this long week! The outreach boards will also be stationed by the lower level of the Ossining Community Center through September 16, see below. We want to hear from you as we finalize a draft of our Comprehensive Plan, which for those newcomers to the Supervisor’s Update, is a document that serves as our ten-year plan for the Town of Ossining. Visit the project website to learn more. We do also plan on circulating an online survey once the draft plan has been released later in the fall.
In State news, the Independent Redistricting Committee has rescheduled the public meeting that was set to take place yesterday due to the impacts of the storm. It will now be held on Thursday, September 9 at 4 PM. If you would like to share testimony as the state is redrawing state legislative and congressional district lines, click here to view the meeting schedule and register. All meetings will also be streamed live at www.nyirc.gov.
Save the date -- The Ossining Fire Department will be hosting its annual 9/11 remembrance ceremony at 9 AM on Saturday, September 11, welcoming first responders and elected officials from Villages of Ossining and Briarcliff and Town of Ossining at Louis Engel Park. We will recognize the 20th anniversary of this national tragedy that had a direct impact on so many of our local families and pay homage to those lost on the day, in the immediate aftermath, as well as those we lost as a result of their heroic acts.
Westchester County will also be commemorating the 20th anniversary of 9/11 on Saturday, September 11 at 3:30 at the Kensico Dam, where the County will also unveil its memorial to first responders and those who died from 9/11-related illnesses. The event will be streamed live on the County facebook page. Also, Volunteer NY is partnering once again with Westchester County and the Westchester Parks Foundation to host 9/11 Serve and Remember National Day of Service. For more information about how you can take part in a day of service to honor victims of 9/11 and their families, anywhere from September 9 through the 12, visit the Volunteer New York website.
The gardens of Historic Sparta will also be open for tours between 11 AM and 4 PM on Saturday, September 11. The price of a ticket includes a map, water and refreshments for your walk, and a donation to the Jug Tavern to support its work to preserve local history.
The Cedar Lane Arts Center fall schedule is now available - click here to view the schedules and register for clay, painting, and more. Additionally, clay instructor Keith Gordon will be hosting an introduction to Horsehair Raku and Obvara Pottery at Bethany Arts Center on September 25. You can register at www.bethanyarts.org.
Jill Kiefer of the Ossining Arts Council is offering art history classes at Bethany Arts Center this fall - click here to view more details and register.
Getting a lot of seeds from your garden this summer? Start collecting them now so you’re ready for the Green Ossining + Ossining Pollinator Pathway Seed Swap event September 25 at the Farmer’s Market! Click here to learn more about how to collect and preserve your seeds, and check out the flier below for more details on the event.
Registration for Green Ossining’s Community-Wide Tag Sale is also open now and ends September 24. The sale will be on Saturday, October 2. For the $25 registration fee, you’ll receive branded promotional materials and placement in online and local media publicizing the event. Click here to learn more and register to help reduce, reuse and recycle your old stuff. Remember one woman’s trash is another woman’s treasure!
Waste not, want not! Green Ossining will also be hosting a Repair Cafe on Saturday, 9/18 from 11 AM - 3 PM at the Community Center. See the flyer below for information about what sorts of items can be brought for repair.
The Westchester County Board of Elections is looking for poll workers to help administer the election coming up this November. Help make democracy possible and make some money in the process! Click here to learn more and complete the poll worker application.
Please remember that the gas powered leaf blower ban remains in effect in the Unincorporated Town of Ossining through the end of this month. Thank you to Green Ossining for preparing the summary below, and thank you for your cooperation! Please share this information with your friends, neighbors, and landscapers. We have made this available for download in both English and Spanish as JPG and PDF files. Please help us spread the word! This information was mailed directly to all landscapers who are based in Ossining for their reference.
Finally, with a holiday weekend upon us, I would like to remind everyone of the importance of exercising caution with COVID-19 rates increasing across the country. The CDC shared this week that they are strongly recommending against travel for people who are unvaccinated, which includes most children. I know this is disheartening for most families, but it is so important to do whatever we can to ensure our school children are safe at the start of the new year. So please re-evaluate your travel plans, especially if you or anyone in your household are not yet vaccinated, and visit the CDC website for additional guidance on travel.
Plan a fun long weekend here in Ossining, maybe start off with a visit to the Farmer’s Market for some local produce and cook up a storm. Visit the Ossining Public Library for a good book, or check out passes to a nearby museum. The Louis Engel Park Spray Park is going to remain open for the season through next Thursday, September 9 so kids can cool down while school is closed a couple extra days this week. There is much fun to be had right here in Ossining and Westchester County, so you do not need to miss out if you choose not to travel this Labor Day weekend.
In celebration of and to honor all those essential workers who work so hard on behalf of our schools, health care facilities, infrastructure, restaurants, parks, homes, and our communities, Town offices will be closed this Monday, September 6th, in recognition of Labor Day. Please take some time to say thank you! Also, please visit our online Waste and Recycling calendar for changes to your collection calendar due to the holiday if you live in the Unincorporated Town of Ossining.
As a result of the holiday week, we rescheduled our work session from this upcoming week to this past week (which was otherwise a fifth Tuesday in August), so our next public meeting will be held in person on September 14th. Have a safe and enjoyable weekend and week and we will see you very soon.
Some of us will also be observing Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, starting Monday night. For those of you joining me in that celebration, I wish you a sweet new year with much health (we need that) and happiness (we all need that too!) L’Shana Tovah.