August 26th, 2017

The SHIRE 935 team is hard at work building on the success of last year to make GRILLSDALE 2017 bigger and better.  A few new well-known chefs, such as Jeremy Stanton of Meat Market/Fire Roasted Catering and Chef Kouri Killmerier of The People’s Pub will join in the grilling. There will be a few new beers, new cider, and new vegetarian options highlight the upgrades to this year’s lineup – all local. But the success of the 2016 speaks for itself:  the event was sold out, in its first year –  a rare feat for any new food and beverage event of this magnitude –  thanks Hillsdale and beyond!!  Clearly, there is demand for what GRILLSDALE delivers – a magical night under the stars in Roe Jan Park, celebrating friends and family while enjoying great music and everything else that our region produces. For live music, this year we are thrilled to have The Wayside Drifters from Ancram, The Lucky 5 from Great Barrington and Sittin’ Plush from Ancramdale performing on the big Herrington’s truck-stage.

Celebrating its 2nd year as the most tantalizing evening of the summer event scene, GRILLSDALE continues to proudly spotlight the bounty of Columbia County, The Berkshires and Dutchess County. Featuring grilled small plates from top restaurants, chefs and purveyors from the area. Set at the gracious, sprawling Roeliff Jansen Park, guests can raise a glass of wine or a hyper-local brew, while watching the sun set over the Skutt Hill. If history continues to repeat itself, GRILLSDALE is poised for a sellout, so grab your tickets quickly! The event is on Saturday, August 26th, 6:30 pm – 11pm at the Hilltop Barn at Roeliff Jansen Park, 4190 Rt 22.

2017 Participating Chefs to date: (a complete 2017 chef list will be announced in mid May)

David Wurth of Crossroads Food Shop (Hillsdale, NY)

Returning 2016 Champ Jack Peele of JACüTERIE (Ancramdale, NY)

Jeremy Stanton of Meat Market/Fire Roasted Catering (Great Barrington, MA)

Chef Kouri Of The People’s Pub (Chatham, NY)

Job Yacubian of The Farmer’s Wife (Ancramdale, NY)

The Hillsdale Fire Company #1 (Hillsdale, NY)

Cascade Mountain Winery & Restaurant (Amenia, NY)

Dafna Mizrahi of Monte’s Kitchen (Amenia, NY) (Judge)

Returning sponsors from 2016 to date are Herrington Home + Design, Herrington’s Fuel, Bradway Plumbing & Heating, The Columbia Tourism Board, Herrington’s and Irving Farm Coffee Roasters. Just added to the event as a “Fire Starter Sponsor” is Metzwood Insurance from Chatham. With additional sponsorship interest from Key Bank and Village Dodge/Jeep in Hudson plus other local businesses we sincerely hope to make this 2017 event fantastic for attendees and beneficial for The Harlem Valley Rail Trail.

The evening will be capped with the naming of two awards, one for “People’s Choice” to be decided by the attendees and “Judges Selection” chosen by panel of noted local TBA judges.

Last year we were able to donate a substantial portion of our net profit to the Harlem Valley Rail Trail, and we pledge to do so again, supplemented by a raffle of a trail-worthy new bicycle or a chef worthy grill.

Ticket pricing to come in mid-May. Early bird discounts will again be available and there will also be a special low priced ticket that is for the latter portion of the evening that is for beer and music only. See website later this month for details as they develop.

Tour Future Historic Houses of Hillsdale

August 12th, 2017

Hillsdale Historic House Tour Visits Future Historic Houses

Hillsdale’s Historic House Tour returns on Saturday August 12 with a twist. This year the tour will visit “future historic houses”: examples of exemplary 21st century design, and highly energy efficient and green building. The houses range from the boxy and sleek to wood and window filled homes with touches of whimsy and include a certified passive house and a net zero one.

In this fifth tour, six houses scattered through the hills of the town will be open from 11 am to 3 pm.

A box lunch prepared by Simons Catering is included with the tour and will be served under a tent at the Roeliff Jansen Community Library, a green building. During lunch, architects from Hudson-based firm BarlisWedlick will present a talk:  Classic and Modern: Designing homes in Columbia County for the 21st Century. Tours of the green features of the library, including solar panels, geothermal, light shelves and light tubes, will be available.


  1. A modern, boxy house is a prime example of architect Peter Franck’s design and the owner’s vision. This contemporary home of stone, glass and wood is built high in the middle of a twenty-acre expanse of rolling hills with 360-degree views that include Catamount and the Taconic Range. The use of glass in the living space brings the outside in.
  2. An owner intensely focused on energy efficiency worked with architect Bruce Coldham to build a home that has been certified by the Passive House Institute US, a highly sought but very difficult certification to earn. This mountain home was built using autoclaved aerated concrete (AAC) blocks, which are up to 75% lighter than conventional concrete blocks and are superior thermal insulators. In addition to being passive, the home is “Energy Positive,” meaning the house produces more energy for its heating/cooling, lights, plugs, appliances, and well pump than it requires annually.
  3. Where a small non-descript weekend hideaway once stood, a stylish contemporary has risen with a commanding mountain view, a pond with a story of it’s own and an interior that reflects sass and whimsy. This wood and window-filled home is inspired by a bit of Frank Lloyd Wright but is clearly the vision of the owner-architect and his yoga devotee wife.
  4. At the top of a long driveway sits the lifelong dream of the architect owner, a glass cabin in the woods that blends the work of the California modernists with a feature of local architecture — the single pitch roofs of cow barns. Sixteen glass doors line the long sides of the house so that every room has access to the outdoors and the deck that wraps the house
  5. Nestled into a sloping site with meadows, woods and ponds, this just completed house is primarily two thick zigzag walls under a faceted roof, resulting in a versatile two level floor plan which accommodates an active young family. It is also super insulated and strategically sited so as to use the sun as it’s major source of energy. This Net Zero house by architect Stephan Green produces as much energy as it consumes.
  6. Positioned to take advantage of long distance views, this older home has been completely redesigned, renovated and modernized. More details to come.


Tour tickets are $40 each.

Download your ticket order form here.

To purchase tickets with a credit card click here.

Tickets can also be reserved at Passifora in Hillsdale and Hillsdale General Store. All tickets will be available for pick up at Hillsdale Town Hall on August 12, starting at 10:45 am.


A Patron’s party will be held at an elegant hilltop villa in Hillsdale from 5 pm to 7 pm on Sunday evening, August 13. This event honors the homeowners who opened their houses for the tour and purchasers of Patron tickets at $100 per person or Sponsor tickets at $150 per person are invited to attend. Designed by architect Dennis Wedlick of BarlisWedlick, with interiors by Matthew White of White Webb, Otium is inspired by the ancient houses of Italy with 21st century elements, making it a true modern villa and one of the future historic houses of Hillsdale.

Sponsor tickets include the tour, entry to the Patron’s Party and the sponsor’s name or business listed in all event material. For more information contact email hidden; JavaScript is required.

Tour and Patron tickets must be ordered by August 7. Sponsor tickets must be ordered by August 4. All visitors will pick up their pre-ordered tickets, a map of the tour and a brochure describing the houses at the Hillsdale Town Hall on the day of the tour starting at 10:45 am.

The Hillsdale Historic House Tour is sponsored by Historic Hillsdale. Proceeds will go towards the preservation of the East Gate Toll House on Route 22 in Hillsdale and provide funding to repair and maintain some of the historic cemeteries in the town.

18th Annual Blueberry Festival

July 30th, 2017

This ever-popular event features early 19th Century craft demonstrations and wares, antiques, live music and entertainment, activities for children, animals, birds of prey, sheep-shearing, plus many unique and highly talented craft vendors and artisans.  NEW:  Introducing a special “Natural Fiber Arts” area this year, with a focus on Wool, Linen & Other Natural Fibers, including handmade arts, crafts, yarn goods, fabrics, dyes, etc. – like a Mini-Festival within the Blueberry Festival itself!  As always, there will be blueberries galore and a blueberry pancake breakfast, in addition to a wide selection of tasty food items and baked goods.  Back again — Silent Auction!  (Please note that there is an additional charge for both adults and children for the pancake breakfast.)  No pets, please!

Old Austerlitz, 11550 State Route 22, Austerlitz, NY 12017

email hidden; JavaScript is required

(518) 392-0062

Sunday, July 30th 9:00am – 4:00pm

18th Annual BLUEBERRY FESTIVAL (Rain or Shine)

Adults $7 – under 12 FREE


Supertone Music Festival in Roe Jan Park

July 22nd, 2017

SuperTone Music Festival is a day long music and arts event which will benefit the Hillsdale Fire Company. The festival will feature a unique blend of young & fresh Country, Rock and Roots music in an intimate setting, contrasting the region’s larger festivals. The producers strive to create a family friendly community atmosphere. Local food and Arts vendors will be featured throughout the day.



Moth Exhibition at Hollow Fields

July 8th, 2017

On Saturday, July 8, from 7 to 10:30 pm Hawthorne Valley Farmscape Ecology Program will be assisting the Berkshire Natural Resources Council with a Moth Exhibition at their Hollow Fields property in Richmond, MA. In addition to the moths, there will also be a natural history lecture, firefly walk, a bonfire and live music. For Directions, visit BNRC’s website.



HVRT Ribbon Cutting

June 17th, 2017


Tick Awareness Workshop

June 15th, 2017



Remember the Titans 5K in Roe Jan Park

June 4th, 2017

Time:  Registration at 10 am & Race Begins at 11 am

Where: Roe Jan Park in Hillsdale, NY

Cost: Pre-registration$20 & $25 the Day of the Event

Contact Joe Raco (518) 929-9960 if you’d like to participate or volunteer.  Pre-registration checks should be made out to “TH Dollars for Scholars” & can be sent to Joe Raco at Taconic Hills DFS at PO Box 44, Hollowville, NY 12530.

TitansRunners, Walkers, and Teams welcome!  Don’t want to Walk or Run?  Come and watch or volunteer you time for a great cause!

All proceeds will be donated to Dollars for Scholars toward scholarships in honor of Titans we’ve lost.





Trio Nota at Methodist Church

June 3rd, 2017

The Fiery Sword of Justice Benefit for RJL

June 3rd, 2017

“The Fiery Sword of Justice”, a critically acclaimed comedy about how one business woman’s compulsive truth-telling torpedoed her career, will be staged at the historic Ancram Opera House on Saturday, June 3, at 3 pm as a benefit for the Roeliff Jansen Commuity Library.

The play is written and performed by Lauren Lettelier. After a decades-long career in New York as an award-winning communications executive, Lauren is now a Hillsdale-based writer, actor, and voice artist as well as a volunteer at the library both at the circulation desk and on committees.

“The Fiery Sword of Justice” received rave reviews at the 2014 New York International Fringe Festival, where critics called it “Bold, funny, wise and brave … cannot be missed!” (; “An enlightening piece of work … wicked, sharp and funny!” ( and “The most original piece … at the Fringe” (

Tickets are $25 and may be purchased online HERE or by check at the library.

“4” Art Exhibit and Sale

June 3rd, 2017

“4” is a one weekend “Pop Up” art exhibit and sale organized and curated by the four local participating artists, Keith A. Batten, Tim Ebneth, Joseph Stabilito, and Tom McGill in cooperation with Gallery at 46 Green Street & 46 Green Street Studios at Joe’s Garage Catskill, 443 Main Street, Catskill, NY. The Opening Event is an opportunity to enjoy refreshments, music and art; to meet the artists in a festive, upbeat atmosphere.

Having exhibited together in the past in association with Gallery at 46 Green Street in Hudson, Keith, Tim, Joe, and Tom conceived “4” to show their work together in a large space in which they could explore the resonance they had with each others’ work. They found Joe’s Garage, a wonderfully restored events space in Catskill, with two high ceilinged 60′ walls and an outdoor exhibition space, to be an ideal location to explore showing large work and small pieces in series.  The event is in 3 parts: An early showing “Preview” 1-4PM  Saturday afternoon for buyers and collectors; an “Opening Event” Saturday evening 5-7PM with wine,  music, and food available to purchase from  Lekker 209‘s Food Truck on site at Joe’s Garage Catskill . DELICIOUS !!!!;  and “Sunday Second Chance” showing with more wine and piano accompanist 1-4P. Check out Gallery @ 46 Green Street Facebook page and click “events” or website: for more information.

Artists’ Websites:

Keith Batten:
Tim Ebneth:
Joseph Stabilito:
Tom McGill:



Ag Day at Columbia Greene Community College

June 3rd, 2017



Demonstration of a Phenology Trail

June 1st, 2017

On Thursday, June 1, join Hawthorne Valley Farmscape Ecology Program from 4-5:30 pm for a Demonstration of a Phenology Trail at Hawthorne Valley. Learn about a nation-wide citizen science effort to document the timing of natural events and practice your observational skills. Meet in front of the Hawthorne Valley Farmstore. Please email hidden; JavaScript is required if you plan to attend.

NYS Public Service Commission Hearing

May 31st, 2017


NYS Public Service Commission Hearing

Public Comment Requested

A petition has been filed for Consolidated Communications of Illinois to acquire Fairpoint Communications

The NYS PSC is holding a public hearing and requests public comments. Please come and voice your concerns.

Wednesday, May 31st
6 pm – Information Session
6:30 pm – Public Statements

Columbia-Greene Community College
4400 State Route 23
Room 206
Hudson, NY 12534

As a town Hillsdale is seeking the terms of the acquisition to include the following:

– Upgrade existing wireline infrastructure to the most modern specifications, e.g. Fiber to the Home.

– Offer Fairpoint’s high-speed internet service to all customers by 2020, meeting the state¿s minimum requirements for broadband speeds.

– Offer low-income households 30 Mbps @ $14.99/mo.

– Plan for providing higher speeds in future years (as has been required of Charter and Altice).

– Commit to a specified level of customer service (i.e. on-site visit within 24 hours, reduction of consumer complaints, etc).

Please attend. You don’t have to say anything, or you can comment during the public session. Your presence will make all the difference. We will provide a short paragraph that you can read if you wish. If you wish to sign up for carpooling please email Broadband Committee Chairperson Tod Wohlfarth at email hidden; JavaScript is required

This is VERY important for the town. We are asking the state to impose conditions upon the sale of Fairpoint to Consolidated Communications of Illinois. We need an upgrade of the infrastructure to fiber or similar to bring better telephone and high-speed broadband to the entire town. If we can get that then we will have reached a high-point in the process to get broadband for everyone in town. There are other conditions we want as well including a low-cost plan for low-income folks, and a promise to maintain the lifeline that telephone is for many of our seniors and vulnerable residents.


If you cannot attend please consider commenting online here:

Click “Post Comments” at the bottom of the page


Memorial Day Parade: Ancram

May 29th, 2017

Photo B Docktor – Memorial Day 2016

The parade lines up at 10:30 am at the Ancram Town Hall, steps off at 11 am and ends at Blass Memorial Field, where the Ceremonies take place.  Following the Ceremonies, refreshments will be served at the Ancram Fire House.

All welcome!

Memorial Day Weekend Barbeque

May 27th, 2017



Hillsdale Flea Market

May 27th, 2017

Hillsdale’s Hamlet Committee will host a flea market on May 27, the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend, marking the return of an event that in years past drew hundreds of shoppers to the center of the town.

The flea market will feature over 40 vendors selling goods ranging from toys, kitchenware, furniture, plants and clothing to antiques, jewelry and collectibles. Several artisans will be on hand with heirloom quality wooden bowls, upcycled birdhouses, hand tooled jewelry, and tote bags made from vintage fabrics.

“The Hamlet Committee hopes the flea market draws both residents and visitors for what promises to be a fun community activity,” said Bart Ziegler, chair of the Hamlet Committee. “Shoppers can expect a huge variety of goods from a variety of sellers who are eager to share their items with bargain hunters.”

The flea market will take place in the Hillsdale Hamlet Park, located just southwest of the intersection of N.Y. Routes 22 and 23 at the traffic light.

The market will open at 8 am for early-bird shoppers, at a charge of $10 per person. Free attendance will begin at 9 am. The market will end at 3 pm. As this is an outdoor event, a rain date for severe weather is set for Sunday May 28, with the same times.

More information can be found on the event’s Facebook page, or by emailing  email hidden; JavaScript is required

Food and beverages will be offered for purchase at the market, while a variety of eateries in the hamlet will be open as usual for breakfast and lunch. A professional appraiser will be available from 11-1 under the large tent, charging $10 for up to 2 items. There will be a raffle for 2 valuable prizes; you can buy your raffle tickets in advance at the Hillsdale General Store, if you would like.

The Hamlet Committee is a volunteer community group that works to enhance the quality of life in the town’s core, both economically and aesthetically, under the auspices of the Hillsdale Town Board. Proceeds from the flea market will be used to further the committee’s mission.





Tax Grievance Day

May 25th, 2017


Pursuant to Sections 506 and 526 of the Real Property Tax Law:

  1. Notice is hereby given that the Tentative Assessment Roll for the Town of Hillsdale is completed and a copy thereof may be seen at the Hillsdale Town Hall during normal business hours until May 25, 2017.
  1. Notice is hereby given that an Assessor will be in attendance with the Tentative Assessment Roll for the Town of Hillsdale at the Town Hall on May 18 & 20, during the hours of 4 pm to 8 pm on Thursday, May 18, and from 9 am-1 pm on Saturday, May 20.
  1. Notice is hereby given that the Board of Assessment Review for the Town of Hillsdale will meet to hear and examine all properly filed complaints in relation to assessments of Real Property at the Town Hall, 2609 Rt. 23, Hillsdale NY on May 25, 2017 during the hours of 4:00 to 8:00 pm.
  1. A publication containing procedures for contesting an assessment is available at the Assessor’s Office, at the Columbia County Real Property Office as well as online at:

Pamela Cook, Assessor

Town of Hillsdale


Jazz Vespers

May 20th, 2017

Church of St. John in the Wilderness, Copake Falls, NY, will hold a Jazz Vespers, featuring John Myers, guitarist, on Saturday, May 20, at 4:30 pm as part of the annual Sacred Sites Weekend.  Since its beginning, the Sacred Sites program has assisted over 1,100 religious institutions in New York State with outreach services and technical advice.  The congregation of St. John’s joins over 650 houses of worship throughout New York State that have received more than $6.5 million in grants from the Sacred Sites Fund, supporting restoration and repair projects totaling over $500 million.  Grants from the Sacred Sites Program helped to fund the recent projects to restore the Bell Tower and to construct a new roof for St. John’s.

St. John’s, built in 1852 by the owners of the Copake Iron Works, is an outstanding example of American Gothic Revival church architecture.  In describing the simple elegance of the church, architectural historian William H. Pierson highlighted the importance of its bell tower by writing “This simple but exquisite open-timbered tower is among the most subtly composed to be found in the small Gothic Revival churches of America.”



North Methodist Chicken BBQ

May 20th, 2017

On Saturday, May 20,  from 4 – 6:00 pm, the North Hillsdale Methodist Church (a designated historic landmark) is hosting their quarterly (and legendary) BBQ extravaganzas. Located at Route 21 and Route 22 – just 4 miles north of the intersection of routes 22 and 23.

Menu includes: 1/2 BBQ Chicken, Baked Potato, Homemade Coleslaw, and Homemade Deserts.

Take out begins at 4 pm.

Adults: $12.00  Children 5-10 years: $5.00  Under 5 years: FREE

Location: North Hillsdale Methodist Church on Route 22 (4 miles north of Route 23) in North Hillsdale, NY.

All proceeds support the building restoration project.

Spring Flower Walk to Sunset Rock

May 20th, 2017

Join Claudia and Conrad Vispo from the Hawthorne Valley Farmscape Ecology Program for a hike to Sunset Rock in Copake. This easy walk follows the Taconic Ridge Trail and takes you through oak forest, oak heath barrens, and along rock outcrops with a unique spring flora. Learn to recognize the common and not so common spring flowers along the way, hear about their ecology and lore, observe their insect visitors. Bring your lunch and eat it while enjoying a spectacular view across Columbia County from Sunset Rock!

All ages are welcome. The walk is free, but space is limited. Please register with Claudia Knab-Vispo (email hidden; JavaScript is required or 518-672-7994) to reserve your space and receive directions.


Hillsdale Clean-up Day

May 20th, 2017

The Hillsdale Town Garage on Old Town Road will be open on Saturday, May 20, from 9 am to noon for Spring Clean-up. If you have stuff to discard, come on down. Open to Hillsdale residents only. 1 load per resident.


Price of Admission: As usual, donations will be accepted – this year to provide funds for Town activities such as the Egg Hunt and the Holiday Tree lighting.

What you can bring: furniture, appliances, metal, glass, pots, pans, car batteries. Mattresses and box springs $20.00 each (our cost of disposing them).

What you cannot bring Household garbage, TVs, computers, computer screens, electronics, paint, paint cans, oil, oil cans or barrels, chemicals, fertilizer or pesticides or their containers, hazardous materials of any kind, brush, construction debris or tires.

Latex paint: You may dispose of latex paint (which is water based) in your regular household garbage provided the liquid inside of the can is dry. This can be accomplished by adding shredded newspaper, sand or kitty litter to latex paint and letting it air dry (as per NYSDEC).

Hazardous Waste: Columbia County has scheduled a hazardous waste day for Saturday, June 17, from 8 am to noon. More information.


Planning Board Minutes 4/10/17

May 19th, 2017

Download Planning Board Minutes 4/10/17

Planning Board Minutes 3/13/17

May 19th, 2017

Download Planning Board Minutes 3/13/17

Housing Focus Group

May 15th, 2017

The Hillsdale Housing Committee mailed a survey in early April to every household and business with a 12529 zip code. The purpose of the survey was to seek local opinions on housing issues such as condition, affordability and need.

Thanks to everyone who responded!  Your many voices have been heard.

The Committee will now hold three focus groups to digest and discuss the findings of the surveys and general housing options.

Dates and times are as follows:

Monday, May 8 – 8:30 am in Town Hall for area businesses

Saturday, May 13 – 10:00 am at the Fire House for residents

Monday, May  15 – 6:30 pm at Mt Washington House for residents

Refreshments will be served.

Anyone interested in attending a focus group, please contact Town resident Tina Sharpe 518-828-4611 or email email hidden; JavaScript is required .

The Committee is fortunate to be working with a group of Community Advisors with deep roots in the community who will host the focus groups. These include Steven Busch, Lynne Colclough, Kelly Fox, Sally Laing and Steve Tiger.

They welcome your questions and concerns and encourage your participation.  MAKE YOUR OPINIONS HEARD!!