Ron Bixby and Alanne Baerson of Little Apple Farm in Hillsdale are now using some of their organically grown crop to produce cider, both fresh and hard. Our intrepid reporter returns for an update on their farm after an absence of 28 years. Photo by David Lee

How ’bout them apples?

Local organic orchard presses ahead with cidery

HILLSDALE—The apples at Little Apple Farm on Orchard Lane are not small anymore and now they are destined for bigger, juicier things.

At a time when Ron Bixby and Alanne Baerson could be slowing down, they are instead embarking on a new venture with the apples at their Little Apple Farm: Making them into cider, both fresh and hard.

The 23-acre farm was so named in 1980 when they bought it, because the apples growing in the untended jungle of an orchard were numerous but puny. Read more…

Safety, tardy kids occupy Hudson school board

HUDSON–Music, students leaving school before the final bell, and street-crossing safety highlighted the Hudson City School District (HCSD) Board of Education meeting Monday, September 28.

Five students in the Hudson High School Jazz Ensemble played music, and music teacher Scott Vorwald thanked mentor Craig Bender for helping obtain instruments for HCSD students. Mr. Bender arranges benefit concerts, with proceeds used to buy instruments. “Because of this influx of instruments, our music program is blooming,” said Mr. Vorwald, who praised the administration for providing a repair budget. Read more…

Valatie receptive to Habitat’s 2-family plan

VALATIE–The village Zoning Board of Appeals met last week to review plans by Habitat for Humanity to build a new two-family on home on a plot now occupied by a dilapidated house at the corner of Main and New streets.

Brenda Adams, executive director of Habitat for the county, attended the September 23 ZBA meeting to ask the board for a variance from local set-back requirements and to look at any other issues that will help the project move forward. Read more…

In G’town, growing library seeks voter support

GERMANTOWN—The Germantown Library will come before the public on the November 3 General Election ballot to ask for more money.

Currently the library receives $58,000 annually through taxes raised in the town. This translates into about $29 per year on a house assessed at $100,000.

The library is requesting an annual increase of $30,000, which would result in a tax of $45 per year. The library calculates that the increase works out to less than a dollar a week for a house assessed at $100,000. Read more…

Village opts for new DPW garage to rise from ashes

KINDERHOOK–The Village Board has voted unanimously not to dissolve the Department of Public Works. At a special meeting Monday, September 21, the board made plans to move forward with rebuilding the DPW garage off of Route 9 and replace equipment lost when the old building burned down in a fire last May and almost all of the equipment was destroyed.

The Village Board had created a committee over the summer with Town of Kinderhook board members to discuss the possibility of contracting with the town for DPW services instead of rebuilding the village own department. The Village of Valatie dissolved its DPW several years ago and pays the town about $82,000 a year for those services, according the Valatie village clerk. Read more…