We are lucky to have another beautiful evening in the cards for tonight's concert on the waterfront. Jigsaww, a band who got their start in Ossining, will be taking the Engel Park stage at 7PM-- come join us for a night of live music right here in Ossining. Jigsaww specializes in covers of your favorite hits, so get ready to sing-- and dance-- along!
We have been working at a fevered pitch here at 16 Croton to get ready to submit a number of grants next week. The Town will be submitting five CFA (Consolidated Funding Applications) before next Friday, including the following:
1) Certified Comprehensive Plan: Comprehensive Plan with Sustainability Elements and Planning for Bicycling: Did you know that the Town is a registered Climate Smart Community? The Climate Smart Communities program is run by the New York State DEC, and rewards municipalities for their leadership in implementing environmentally friendly policies. The Town would like to become a Bronze Level Certified Climate Smart Community, which means we have a few more steps to take to be more “green.” Two of these steps include developing a new Comprehensive Plan with sustainability elements, such as promoting a healthy community and preserving green space. The Town is also interested in planning to make Ossining more bike and pedestrian friendly-- another activity that will get us some points towards our Bronze certification. The State's Climate Smart Communities grant program offers funding to help municipalities along. Working with our partners at Pace University Land Use Law Center and Westchester County, we hope to get funding from the State to develop a new comprehensive plan (ours, while it has been updated, is over 17 years old now) with sustainability elements and plan for bicycling and walking in our community.
2) Food Waste Collection Program: Working in connection with the Greenburgh Nature Center, the Town of Greenburgh has enacted a similar program to what the Town of Ossining is interested in starting. The premise is that Ossining residents would be able to bring their food scraps to a centralized location in Cedar Lane Park, where it would be safely transported to an out-of-town composting facility. Teatown Lake Reservation has offered to provide the educational component to the project by way of teaching residents the benefits of recycling food scraps (lower greenhouse gas emissions and lower tipping fees for municipalities-- that food waste is heavy!), as well as teaching them how to do it properly.
3) Cedar Lane Park Ice House & Greenhouses: Cedar Lane Park sits on the former grounds of the 52 Association, which was formerly home to the Kress Estate. While some of the original buildings no longer exist, several are still standing, including the newly re-opened Shine House (now called the Cedar Lane Arts Center). However, multiple other buildings on the property have fallen into disrepair, but are likely still at the point where they may be salvaged. The Ice House, which got some remodeling and upgrades as part of CLAC, still needs some interior work, and the two original greenhouses up the hill are in need of restoration as well. The plan is to be able to restore all 3 buildings to their former glory and allow them to serve as an added amenity to Cedar Lane Park visitors.
4) Cedar Lane Park- Salt Shed Replacement: When our Highway and Parks workers are plowing, they come to Cedar Lane Park to fill their trucks with salt. Over the years, the cover of the shed has not held up terribly well, and we are regularly having to patch portions of it, which isn't ideal for our budget, our use of manpower, or the environment. We are hopeful that this grant application will enable us to purchase a larger and more hearty shed for the site.
5) Green Pavement Improvements: In the 2019 Capital Plan, we will be proposing the repaving of three large parking lots in our Town Parks (Ryder, Cedar Lane, and Gerlach), and we see this as the perfect opportunity to institute a porous paving system. This is an expensive proposition for more reasons than one-- not only are the pavers themselves more costly than simply pouring blacktop, as is custom, it also requires a system of underground channels to direct the water appropriately. An infusion of grant funding would make this important environmental consideration much more feasible.
Speaking of paving, we are finally (finally, FINALLY!) almost ready to finish up at Gerlach Park-- the paving should be finished by this time next week. In the meantime, the Parks staff has been preparing the area for the contractors to come in and pave the service road, the ring around the pavilion, and the ADA-accessible ramp up to the restrooms. We took a trip over there today and learned some cool tricks about how to measure change in height over a distance.
Figuring out the rise-over-run is easier on paper, but in the field, this is how it's done! Using what is essentially a yardstick and a device called a "transit," they are able to measure the slope of a graded area. Pretty cool stuff!
The service road (one of two ways to access Gerlach Park) is looking great and is ready for paving-- our crew did an excellent job building the stone wall coming up the driveway-- before long, this beautiful spot will finally have an entrance to match.
We also got to take a look at the newly installed magnetized doors on the restroom-- when this project is complete, it will allow us to lock and unlock the doors remotely, which will not only save us some money on overtime, but also will help to keep our restrooms clean.
Lots to do around Town this weekend-- have you made it to the St. Augustine's Festival yet? I attended on Wednesday night for the awesome fireworks display and am considering making another trip this weekend for some more delicious food-- so many tasty looking treats on offer, not to mention their world-famous sangria!
On Saturday, we have two great free workouts on offer as part of the Mind Body Spirit Ossining program. In the morning, join Meghan of the Crossover Yoga Project for Rise & Shine Yoga at 8:30AM at Engel Park. Later that afternoon, Sue Radparvar of Studio95 Zumba will also be at the Engel Park stage for an energetic Zumba class at 3PM. Come get your sweat on with some of our local experts while you enjoy our beautiful Hudson River scenery.
Also, the Ossining Historic Cemeteries Conservancy will be at Dale Cemetery this Saturday from 9AM to 12PM doing a gravestone cleaning-- check out some amazing local landmarks (the Heritage Trail is ready for you!) and help preserve our local history.
You can also check out the "Bailey Brook Stream Stomp" at Teatown between 10AM and 11AM. Summer is a great time for nature exploration, so lace up your boots and bring the family along-- you never know what cool ceatures you might meet! This event is part of the Summer Saturday Adventure Series at Teatown, so make sure to check out the other two installments coming up (Beaver Dams and Lodges on August 4th and Insect Survey on August 25th). Click here for more information on programs throughout the summer and info on how to sign up.
(As a sidenote-- when you and your family are out and about in this gorgeous weather, be sure to take all proper precautions-- we have been hearing a lot about a new kind of tick making the rounds, as well as tickborne illness, in the news lately, so make sure you know how to keep yourself safe and healthy! Here are some fact sheets in pdf English (621 KB) and in pdf Spanish (537 KB) , please share!)
Westchester Collaborative Theater began their staged readings of "Feedback Loop" last night-- check out the remaining performances tonight or throughout the weekend. Please note-- this production contains material suited for adult viewers only, including very strong language and content. Please be mindful of who you invite along!
Also on Saturday, July 21st, Melita's Shop at 125 Main Street in the Village of Ossining will be holding a Girl Boss Pop-Up Shop between 10AM and 5PM. Just some of the creative items for sale? Pottery, pet portraits, pillows, jewelry, toys, and stained glass. Come support women in business this Saturday!
On the morning of Sunday, July 22nd at 11AM, the Village of Briarcliff Manor will be hosting a ribbon cutting for the grand re-opening of the Route 9A/ North State Road intersection. This project has been discussed for many years, and we are so glad it is finally complete-- extra special thanks to to the Village of Briarcliff and Village Manager Phil Zegarelli for taking the lead on this complicated project and helping it to fruition, Assemblywoman Sandy Galef and Senator David Carlucci for their help and support with funding and with navigating NYSDOT, and County Legislator Catherine Borgia for all the work at the County level necessary to get this improvement accomplished, which we hope will help ease traffic on this major corridor. I am sure many of you have already experienced the new lining and traffic lights. I look forward to celebrating with our Board, as well as the prior Town Board who brought the Town in on the work and the BOT from Briarcliff.
If you've been meaning to bring some more calm into your life, summer is a great time to start and Mariandale has your back. Next week, they will be holding three events to help you get your zen back before the hustle of fall begins again. All of the following events will be held on the Mariandale Center Campus at 299 N. Highland Avenue-- visit www.mariandale.org for more information on what you need to wear and bring along for each session, as well as what if anything, you will be charged for the class:
What's a MOGO? Local municipalities have been working to create routes from downtown areas to the North County and South County Trails. Millwood-Ossining Go! has worked with WCC to create several routes, and this ride is your first opportunity to ride with an escort! Join your guides for a modified version of the Briarcliff Route, starting at Ossining High School. You will make our way to the trail and ride for a while, (the distance can be modified and/or differentiated depending on the needs of the group) and then ride back to OHS for Victor's famous Flat Tire Workshop (optional). This is a great ride for anyone living locally who would like to become more active on the bike. There will be lots of support during the ride, and there will be a safety talk before getting started, but please be prepared with a working bike (with gears- yes there are some hills). There will be a pump available to help you at the start, but if you have not been out on your bike for a while, it's a good idea to take it to a local bike shop to get tuned up. A helmet is a MUST and please bring a water bottle. Rain will cancel the ride, so check back by 7:00 that morning for an update.
That evening, WCT will host Gerry Malkin Collective with Ingrid Jensen as part of their Jazz Masters Series. Ingrid Jensen recently worked with some musicians from Ossining High School and was phenomenal, so take advantage of this opportunity to hear some first class musicians right in or backyard! Doors open at 7PM for the 8PM performance, admission is $20 per person. Visit www.wctheater.org for more info and to get your tickets.
There are two great events taking place later this month to support the Croton and Ossining Community Tennis Association.The Summer Sizzler is a two-part fundraiser, all taking place on Saturday, July 28th. Part one is a social tennis mixer at the Shannon Ross Tennis Courts at Nelson Park between 2PM and 5PM-- if you want to get in on a little friendly competition, all you need to do is register, and they will work out the schedule and teams for you. Part two is a party at the home of Patrice and Jeff Davidson in Croton between 7PM and 9:30PM, including Jeff's world-class barbeque. To participate, reserve your spot for one or both events here.
Wishing everyone a restful weekend-- it looks like there are some showers in the forecast for late Saturday into Sunday, including the possibility of some flash flooding, so keep an eye on the skies as you plan your travels!
PS: The Sing Sing Prison Museum has just launched their Kickstarter campaign! The Preview Center is the key to making the Sing Sing Prison Museum a reality, so consider donating if you'd like to be a part telling Sing Sing's imporant story of 200 years of criminal justice in America.