¡Hola vecinas!

On September 19, Columbia County Sanctuary Movement and the Hudson Tourism Board hosted the first Latinx Parade and Festival celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month. Pictured are some of the performers at the festival. According to the organizers over 1,000 people attended the event at Henry Hudson Riverfront Park in Hudson. For more information see the press release on Page 24 of print issue. Photo contributed

Local veteran chronicles those decorated in combat

Mark Clarke, author of “Columbia: Those Who Served.” Photo by David Lee

GHENT—Local author Mark Clarke listened to the stories his father told of his time in service in the United States Army in World War II. It sparked his imagination. Mr. Clarke is also a veteran, having enlisted in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War, serving in an airborne infantry regiment in Europe.

His newly published book is titled “Columbia: Those Who Served.” It’s a compilation of biographies of veterans of military service who have been honored in the 20 years of the Columbia County Honor a Veteran Program inaugurated by the Columbia County Board of Supervisors in 2000. Mr. Clarke was one of the original committee members tasked with reviewing nominees for this recognition.

“I would interview the nominators and do the research,”Mr. Clarke said. The only two criteria were that the nominee served honorably and was deceased by 30 days.” Read more…

Morris nixes move to park

The Morris Memorial Fall Recreational Soccer Program is underway with games each weekend in September and October. These kids are Division 2, 3rd and 4th grade boys and girls, coached by Jerome Barnes (center) and Elizabeth Link (not pictured). They are playing on the Crellin Park soccer field Tuesday, September 21. Photo by David Lee

CHATHAM—The Morris Memorial announced in late August that a plan to sell the historic building in the Village of Chatham and build a new recreation center at Crellin Park in the Town of Chatham was not going to happen.

On the Morris Memorial Facebook page dated August 31, the not-for-profit organization wrote that its planning committee “met with the Town of Chatham as part of our joint Crellin Park Rec Center Feasibility Committee. After lots of hard work and good faith discussions between both parties, it was ultimately decided that the project was not feasible.”

The community and youth organization owns and maintains the Morris Memorial building on Park Row in the village. The brick building, built in 1910, hosts an after school program for children in the Chatham School District and a basketball program. In 2019, the gym in the building was also being used for pickleball and hosted local seniors before the Covid-19 pandemic. The Family Resource Centers of Columbia County rents the second floor to host playgroups for preschool age children. That program was put on hold during the pandemic as well, but will reopen in October. The Morris also hosts a soccer program at the Crellin Park, a park owned by the town. Read more…

Housing authority once again seeks exec

HUDSON—The Hudson Housing Authority (HHA) is looking for a new executive director and a new attorney, and it consequently has delayed on-going projects and its usual September resolutions. But it does have a new commissioner on its board.

During online conference meetings September 8 and 17, the board said good-by to the previous executive director and designated his intended replacement only to find out it needed to keep searching.

The HHA runs the 135-unit income-restricted Bliss residences and supplies vouchers for housing elsewhere in Hudson. Read more…

Twenty years later still like yesterday

A local 9-11 memorial ceremony last Saturday started with a procession of a color guard of the combined Niverville, Kinderhook and Valatie fire companies. They marched from the Ichabod Crane primary school parking lot to the Volunteers Park on State Farm Road. Also in the procession were police agencies, rescue squads including a LifeNet helicopter flyover, the American Legion, and area boy and girl scout troops. Retired Port Authority Police Chief Jerry Matthews recounted his experience as he assisted with the rescue efforts at a CUNY building near the Twin Towers site September 11, 2001. Other guest speakers included: Jeff Cox of Old Chatham who, as an environmental Conservation Officer, was a first responder on the morning of the attack and worked at Ground Zero for six months; and Susan Massarella, of Copake, who was on the 72nd floor of 1 World Trade Center working for the Port Authority when the plane hit the building. Photo by David Lee