Category Archives: Ruminations

Arrested Development

Arrested Development

  And this year’s Emmy Award nominees for Best Drama series are: Better Call Beacon The Beacon The Beacon’s Tale House of Beacon Stranger Beacon This is Beacon Beaconworld And the winner is…The Beacon’s Tale! Credited with single-handedly blazing a new tv genre, this urban planning procedural drama focuses on a small former river millRead More

Planning Board Gives Green Light to New Gas Station on Main Street

Planning Board Gives Green Light to New Gas Station on Main Street

  Earlier this week Beacon’s planning board issued a Certificate of Appropriateness for a new gas station on the western end of town at the intersection of Main Street and Cross Street. Because the station will be in an historic district, the certificate was a required first step. The final site plan approval process “willRead More

City of Beacon’s Real Estate Savvy Quotient

City of Beacon’s Real Estate Savvy Quotient

  Some of the real estate dealings involving the City of Beacon appear puzzling, at least when looking in from the outside. For instance, the city recently purchased a lot on the creek for over half a million dollars. Yet only two years ago, it sold a prime double city lot in the heart ofRead More

New City of Beacon Newsletter is Light on Facts, Figures (and Copy Editing)

New City of Beacon Newsletter is Light on Facts, Figures (and Copy Editing)

  The City of Beacon recently published the first installment of its new quarterly publication, an electronic newsletter.”The City has launched this new information service which is intended to help you keep up on the ‘happening’ around City Hall, such as events, happenings, projects, and services” reads the introductory message from the city administrator. TheRead More

Beacon, Gentrified?

Beacon, Gentrified?

  Recently, we looked at how the teetering economy will likely turn Beacon’s housing boom into a bust. But what if all the glaring indicators of severe engine trouble are wrong, and don’t mean what they usually mean, or the Federal Reserve’s head mechanic Janet Yellen breaks out her magic toolbox and tinkers around aRead More

NYC’s Mayor De Blasio Reaches Out To Yarn Bombers

NYC’s Mayor De Blasio
Reaches Out To Yarn Bombers

A few years ago it might have been called synergy. But it was just a matter of common sense, according to Beacon Mayor Randy Casale, who received a quick ring over the weekend from his New York City counterpart, Mayor Bill de Blasio. “He had a problem to solve and he saw a great outsideRead More

The Dummy Light Wars

The Dummy Light Wars

“You can be someone doing something, or you can be someone talking about the people doing things.” Anonymous Beacon yarn bomber (BYB) Beacon, NY. Reuters The Beacon Yarn Bombers claimed another victim in what is being called the Dummy Light War here in this small former mill town 60 miles upriver from New York City. Read More

BAU Set To Close Due To Greece & Oil on the China, Etc.

BAU Set To Close Due To Greece
& Oil on the China, Etc.

BAU was Business As Usual before it was Beacon Artists Union. Our apologies for any confusion. Wigwam is a home economy journal. It looks at how we can start to decouple from the industrial global economy and become more resilient and self-reliant as a community. It attempts this mission because the global economy cannot lastRead More

Beacon and the Tourism Trap

Beacon and the Tourism Trap

  I’ve lived in this city since it was an industrial community, and that was our economic engine. Today, our economic engine is tourism. ” Beacon mayor Randy Casale, April 2015 Last night was Second Saturday and one imagines it was exactly what a successful Second Saturday was envisioned to look like when the monthlyRead More

Signs of Spring: Peeps & Eats

Signs of Spring: Peeps & Eats

  My son and I were at Denning’s Point last week, where the spring peepers are out in force in the northern marshy section where the trail first divides. Only the week before we found the last third of the trail up Mount Beacon was an Olympic bobsled run, covered in ice. (Dad had aRead More

Wigwam’s Weekend Bonus Post!

Wigwam’s Weekend Bonus Post!

There are still a couple posts waiting in the draft box, but in the meanwhile I figured I would put up this mishmash of observations I’ve had while walking about town, random local stuff that just happened or is about to happen, before it gets too stale, and another short slideshow of photos featuring snow,Read More

LUST Comes to Beacon: It’s Volatile!

LUST Comes to Beacon: It’s Volatile!

Update on the gasoline leaking from the underground storage tanks at Main and Fishkill Avenue: Removal has continued after a delay due to too much moisture in the soil. Truckloads of contaminated dirt are being hauled to an approved facility in Albany. Still no word on the extent of the contamination, but at this pointRead More

Beacon’s Soul Intact!

Beacon’s Soul Intact!

 On this day for hearts, it’s reassuring to know that, according to a recent article in The New York Times, Beacon still has a soul. Okay, I admit, I can’t help it. These  trifles in The New York Times that tout Beacon as a getaway for slickers from the city are one of my petRead More

Gas Leak Update: The Hole We Dig Grows Ever Deeper

Gas Leak Update: The Hole We Dig Grows Ever Deeper

  The attempt to clean up the spilled gas at Main Street and Fishkill Avenue continued today, with quite a few more truckloads of contaminated soil carted away in dump trucks throughout the day. And it may not be just the soil that has been compromised. According to several locals, there are subterranean feeder springs toRead More

Beer Grants, Jobs, Lumbersexuals & LegoLand

Beer Grants, Jobs, Lumbersexuals & LegoLand

I was sitting in Yummy Taco on 17k in Newburgh last December having lunch with a friend. We met a dozen years ago, when he was running a small eatery on Main Street in Beacon and I ran a second-hand furniture place next door. As we sampled what he called the fusion menu—the place wasRead More

Bombogenesis and Beacon

Bombogenesis and Beacon

  Anyone who missed the chance for a snowy stroll this past Saturday morning will have another opportunity shortly. As the Hudson Valley Weather guy described it, we are in for a bombogenesis. What a fun word. It has a technical meteorological definition, but it could be repurposed generally to mean something along the linesRead More

One Foggy Christmas Eve

One Foggy Christmas Eve

  I don’t know the words to many songs, but this one would take a frontal lobotomy to remove. Many have covered it, but Dean Martin’s version from 1959 is extra special. Happy Birthday, Rudolph! (Although 75 is positively ancient for a reindeer, he’s a babe in the woods compared to another famous savior, Jesus,Read More

Hudson River Interlude

Hudson River Interlude

Since late August I’ve been commuting from Beacon to Newburgh for work. It’s given me a renewed appreciation for the mighty body of water currently known as the Hudson River. Some days I have a camera with me. I was drawn to the combination of water and expansive skies and how they relate to theRead More

Strawberry Moons, Shorter Days, Seafood, & Casinos

Strawberry Moons, Shorter Days, Seafood, & Casinos

Maybe from the title of this post you guessed that there was no city council meeting this week—only four per month allowed. So we’ll catch up on a few things, for those who care to follow a summer ramble… Friday, June 13 was the night of the Strawberry Moon, the Algonquin name for the  fullRead More

Airbnb Regulations Getting Convoluted Fast

Airbnb Regulations Getting Convoluted Fast

  Meet Homeowner Example A, a family with a nice three-bedroom house in Beacon. They also have a vacation home in the Berkshires. On weekends when they head north, they rent out their Beacon house to tourists via a listing on Airbnb, using the extra income to splurge at Smokers Mecca. 271 feet away isRead More

Rebirthed Beacon’s  Quaint Make-Over Rediscovered by New York Times!

Rebirthed Beacon’s Quaint Make-Over Rediscovered by New York Times!

  Look, the New York Times mentions Beacon! Here we go again, with the Times announcing our rediscovery, our rebirth, our make-over. These bits of journalistic cotton candy have been spun out with minor variations every two or three years for at least the past decade. Here’s one from 2007, when Clara Gould actually wasRead More

Drink, Beacon, Drink!

Drink, Beacon, Drink!

Just as a certain political party solved the energy crisis with the dictum “Drill, baby, drill,*” Beacon appears poised to defy a sluggish economy with a veritable onslaught of alcohol-based businesses. The newest member of the club will be at 394 Main Street, sandwiched between Kennedy Fried Chicken and the late, lamented Nichols Hardware, whereRead More

Repaint the Sharrows!

Repaint the Sharrows!

By Mark Roland It’s been a rough winter, and soon it will be time for that annual rite of spring, the repainting of the various road markings worn down by snow, salt, tire and plow blade—the double yellow lines, the parking spots, the crosswalks. And, of course, the bike sharrows, known in official traffic codeRead More

Do NOT Honor Pete Seeger

Do NOT Honor Pete Seeger

At least not by naming the new Tappan Zee Bridge in his memory. There is currently an online petition to the New York State Senate to do just that. Naming a major industrial bridge in the New York Thruway system that links the ticky-tacky sprawl of Rockland with the ticky-tacky sprawl of Westchester is probablyRead More