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Category Archives: area attractions

I Do Love a Library

Tuesday I wrote about the Prom Attire Giveaway at Frankfort Free Library. Today I shall write about the rest of the visit to the library.

I must have looked confused as we walked in the door, because the lady behind the desk asked could she help me.

“Oh no, we’re just here to enjoy the library,” I said. Then I explained that I intended to write a blog post about it and possibly an article to submit to Mohawk Valley Living (incidentally, I’ve been meaning to write a blog post about that magazine and TV show).

After chatting with the lady for a bit, Steven and I browsed the shelves. I picked out one book (conservative for me). I asked if there was an ongoing book sale, as libraries often have. The lady said they didn’t have the space for it.

“Yes, this is the smallest library in the area,” I said.

“Poland is smaller,” she told me.

“I’ll have to check that one out.” Could be a future blog post.

Before we left I wanted to go down into the basement, where they were organizing the donated prom gowns (which I wrote the previous blog post about). We had quite a nice talk with the lady in charge of that, whose name I foolishly did not get. She showed us the Early Literacy Room, where classes are held weekly for young children. It has all the accoutrements of a good kindergarten room (if I remember my kindergarten days correctly) (no, it was NOT in a one-room schoolhouse; I’m not that old. Sheesh!).

“And this becomes a graveyard for our haunted house,” the lady said.

“Ooh, a haunted house,” I said. “Maybe I could volunteer for that.”

“We can always use more actors,” she said.

“I’m very dramatic.” I made a dramatic pose to demonstrate, but I think she believed me to begin with.

The Frankfort Free Library offers a lot to the community, with movie nights twice a week as well as other special programs. Santa Claus visits in December, and the Easter Bunny in the spring. Their April calendar shows Drop-in Craft Night, All Things String and How Many Jelly beans in the Jar? You can visit their website for a list of current events: www.midyorklib.org/frankfort. They also have a Facebook page (they accepted my Friend request).

The library is located at 123 S. Frankfort St., Frankfort, NY. Phone number is 315-894-9611. They are open Monday and Wednesday 2 to 8 p.m., Tuesday and Thursday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Friday 3 to 7 p.m. and Saturday 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

About that Play…

I apologize to local readers (if any). I really prefer to attend Ilion Little Theatre (ILT) productions opening weekend. That way readers of the post about the play have another weekend to catch the show. Didn’t happen this time. Then again, I often write about events that were one-shot deals, and people do still have two more chances to catch Don’t Talk to the Actors (if you act quickly, as they say in the infomercials).

We arrived at the theatre on Remington Avenue in Ilion, NY right around 7:30 p.m. last night (Friday, March 21). We wanted to get there early, in case the play sold out. It had played to very appreciative audiences opening weekend. We knew it had gotten good word of mouth. There were plenty of seats left, although we had to discommode people sitting on the end of the row. We like to sit in the middle, although at ILT there are no bad seats that I know of.

As we waited for the show to start, we perused our programs and, as always, looked around at the framed posters on the walls. So many plays! I love to look at the dates and look for names I know.

The director didn’t make the usual curtain speech. It was made by a character in the play, the most sought after stage manager on Broadway. A nice touch which pulled us right into the story.

It is a fun story for any theatre lover, especially ones like Steven and me, who have worked on many plays and perhaps harbored Broadway dreams of our own at one time (I’m not saying we actually did, but perhaps). A naive playwright and his innocent fiance are in New York City, where the playwright’s play is about to be produced. I did think it was kind of funny that Buffalo was treated as a small town, from which people came who had NO IDEA how to cope with the rat race of NYC. I always thought Buffalo was kind of a big city. Then again, I live in Herkimer.

I guess I don’t need to tell you that things do not go quite as expected for our hero and heroine (wouldn’t be much of a play if they did). It is a very funny and surprisingly touching story. I expected the funny, because of what I’d heard beforehand, but the touching was a nice surprise.

We laughed out loud in many places, as did a lot of the audience. We enjoyed some coffee and candy during intermission. Another highlight of my evening was winning the 50/50 raffle at intermission. Proceeds from the 50/50 go toward framing the posters I always admire on the wall. Some nice people donate their winnings back, but I greedily kept mine. Don’t judge.

I recommend the production and, like I said, if you hurry, you have two more chances to see it: tonight, Saturday, March 22 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, March 23 at 2 p.m. For more information, check out ILT’s website at www.ilionlittletheatre.org. You can also Like their Facebook page.

Maybe Tomorrow I Can Write About the Play

I was so certain my gyrations this afternoon would yield material for a blog post that I didn’t write a thing all day. Well, a letter to my sister. I know, doesn’t count.

And now I must quickly come up with something. You see, we are going to Ilion Little Theatre (ILT) to see Don’t Talk to the Actors. We were supposed to go last Friday to see it, but I had a headache. I mean a really bad headache. I may have written a blog post about it. Today I had a headache again. I guess it was a good headache, because it’s mostly gone now. Phew!

I’m looking forward to the play, as I do to any ILT production. This one I am especially anxious to see. It is directed by Steve Wagner, who played Elwood P. Dowd in Harvey year before last. I played his sister (in case you missed all my myriad blog posts about that production). He’s cool. The cast features a number of ILT veterans, including two who are returning to the stage. Goody.

So I spent all afternoon, thinking I have to go here, do this, hurry there, get that done and, oh yeah, think of something to wear. I thought at least the wardrobe would be worth a post (this is Lame Post Friday after all). But no, I drove around and did all my stuff without drama. I even figured out something respectable and not very exciting to wear.

I’m ready to go. I only have to publish my blog post. And here it is, boring but done.

The play, by the way, is at the Stables, Remington Avenue, Ilion, NY, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, March 21, 22, 23, 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday. For more information visit their website, www.ilionlittletheatre.org, or their Facebook page (Ilion Little Theatre Club).

A Treat for Tabby

Last Saturday between my scary walk that I didn’t finish and my awesome walk that I wrote a blog post about, I took my schnoodle Tabby the the Ilion Farmer’s Market at Clapsaddle Farm, on Otsego Street in Ilion, NY.

The Ilion Farmer’s Market is one of Tabby’s favorite places. Since I had deprived her of her full walk earlier, I thought she deserved a treat.

Things were still frozen. My SUV jolted over some frozen tire tracks in the parking lot. The walk into the barn was a little hazardous, but we made it without mishap.

Tabby was very happy, sniffing everywhere and greeting people. I greeted people, too and looked around for something to buy. I studied the jars of pickles but remembered I still have pickles at home, and I don’t eat as many pickles as I used to anyways. I thought about getting some note cards with a Jim Parker print. However, with a bouncy dog pulling on my arm, I did not feel I could make a leisurely selection. The lady I’ve bought earrings from was not there.

“Where’s the jewelry lady?” I asked. Apparently she has left the area, I think to join her mother in Illinois. Oh well, my jewelry box is full of earrings anyways.

It was a short visit but enjoyable. And it was the first Mohawk Valley thing I’ve done other than take a walk in at least a week. Alas, the cold weather continues. But perhaps as the week progresses, more Mohawk Valley adventures will ensue.

On the Edge of my Seat

At one point during Ilion Little Theatre’s (ILT) production of Wait Until Dark, I got so absorbed I let my notebook fall off my lap and land on the floor with a plop. Anything louder would probably have made people jump, because I think most of us were on the edges of our seats.

Wait Until Dark, by Frederick Knott, is a thriller about a recently blinded woman pitted against dangerous criminals. It was made into a movie with Audrey Hepburn some years ago. I like the play better.

The play is directed by Raphael DiLorenzo, who also has a major role as one of the criminals. DiLorenzo has appeared on the ILT stage before, notably with yours truly in Harvey. Other ILT favorites in the cast include Arthur Wilkes, Ron Creighton and Juliane Allen.

A recent newcomer to ILT is Kaylynn Iglesias, who recently appeared in Bless Me, Father. She plays the blind woman and is excellent in a role with unusual challenges. Other newcomers include Chris Smith and Charity Plows. As usual, all of the acting is top notch.

Steven and I brought my friend Diane to see the show. Scandalously, she had never been to an ILT production before. She was immediately enchanted with the theatre and, as I always do, enjoyed looking around at all the posters. She enjoyed the show a great deal, too, as, I believe, did everybody in the audience.

The show runs for another weekend, so area readers have a chance to sit on the edges of their seats too. Friday, Saturday and Sunday, January 31, February 1 and 2 at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday. Doors open a half hour before curtain, no reserved seating, so get there early. I wouldn’t be surprised if they sell out.

For more information on Ilion Little Theatre you can visit their website at www.ilionlittletheatre.org, email them at ilionlittletheatre@gmail.com, Like them on Facebook, or call 315-894-3203.

Friday Fun

I started my weekend fun at the Belly Up Pub Friday evening with music by Philip Arcuri.

Belly Up Pub is located on Albany Street in Herkimer, NY. Happy Hour is usually from 6 to 8 p.m. Fridays, but in January they are offering a bonus hour beginning at five. Steven worked till 5:30, so we met at the Pub.

Drinks and food were half price. I got a Pinot Grigio while Steven got a Brown Ale. We ordered nachos and an appetizer sampler which included chicken tenders, mozzarella sticks, jalapeno poppers and sweet potato fries. The nachos came with queso dip, salsa and sour cream. We chose Ranch dip for the sampler.

The most enjoyable feature of the evening was the music by Philip Arcuri, who played guitar and sang. He played classic rock, mostly from the ’60s and ’70s, with a few thrown in from the ’80s. A lot of his playlist was mellow, but there were a few toe tappers. My favorite was “Mustang Sally.” I woo-wooed when he was done with that one.

The atmosphere in the BUP is very relaxed. I observed a wide range of ages in the patrons. Everybody seemed to be having a good time. Two bartenders took good care of everybody. Arcuri reminded us to tip them well.

When I had been talking about going to hear a musician at BUP, a co-worker had asked if there was dancing.

“There’s not a lot of space,” I said. “But I wish there was; I’d love to go dancing.”

“Oh, go ahead and dance. As long as you don’t do any lap dancing.”

When I came out of the Ladies Room just before we left, Arcuri was playing, “Last Kiss,” one of what Steven calls a Dead Teenager song from the ’60’s. For being about a sad subject, it is a really catchy tune. I came out of the bathroom dancing. Nobody seemed to mind.

It was a fun interlude to begin my weekend. It won’t be long before I make my way to the Belly Up Pub again. And I’ll be looking for another time to catch Philip Arcuri play.

Mohawk Valley Art

Saturday afternoon I drove to Little Falls, NY, with my friend Tracy to attend an art opening at the Mohawk Valley Center for the Arts (MVCA).

I’ve stopped in at MVCA before, most recently in September during the Garlic Festival. Regular readers may remember that I won two lovely pieces of art at the MVCA Art Giveaway in October. This is the first opening reception I’ve been to. I hope it will not be the last.

The exhibit was “People and Places in My Travels” by Deborah Rosato. I was enchanted by “Christmas in Old Forge,” which MVCA shared on its Facebook page. The other watercolors and pastels in the exhibit did not disappoint. Ms. Rosato was on hand to answer questions about her work. I didn’t have any questions; I just took it all in.

Tracy and I chatted up Kevin Mihaly, the executive director. He mentioned volunteer opportunities. I am interested in that, if it could work out. For one reason, I might get some blog posts out of it.

We also talked with Frank Wilcox, one of the artists who had donated work to October’s Art Giveaway. I also knew Mr. Wilcox because he was in the play Strike Story, which was presented in Little Falls’ Black Box Theatre and at Ilion Little Theatre.

I later noted in MVCA’s Calendar of Events, “Art Matters,” that he will be teaching a 10-week class in Mixed Media beginning in January. MVCA offers a number of art classes. I had said at the Art Giveaway that I was inspired to create something. Perhaps a class is in my future.

After looking at the exhibit and enjoying some of the refreshments, Tracy and I went into the retail section, The Selective Eye. Art, jewelry, clothing, postcards and more are available for purchase. I bought some postcards when I was there in September. They didn’t have any new ones this time.

I was really happy I had made it to the art opening. I was also pleased I had picked up the Art Matters Calendar of Events, so that I can take advantage of other events. For more information on MVCA, you can call 315-823-0808, visit their website at www.MohawkValleyArts.org, or Like their Facebook page.

Fun at the Mill

I thought I would write a little bit more about Sunday’s visit to the Fly Creek Cider Mill.

It is always an enjoyable drive from Herkimer to Fly Creek, over mountains with great scenic views. I looked at farmland, lakes and more. Luckily, Steven was driving.

We went into the main building while we waited for my sister and two nieces to arrive. I thought it couldn’t hurt to get a head start on some sampling. That is one thing I love about Fly Creek Cider Mill, lots of free samples. They have dips, sauces, spreads and more. My favorite this past Sunday was a spinach and artichoke dip, which they had heated up. We bought a jar of that.

We also tried a few of the wines. Hard cider was also available for sample, but I didn’t want to be greedy. The Mill is part of the Cooperstown Beverage Trail, which a lady gave us a booklet about. Could be a future blog post (or posts).

After the others had arrived, we had some more samples and wandered upstairs to look at the many gifts and decorations available. I almost feel it is too early to think about Christmas decorations, but, oh, I love all the Santas! Of course, it is never the wrong time for Halloween, as far as I’m concerned, so I thoroughly enjoyed looking at those things.

When we had browsed and tasted our fill, we made our purchases and went outside to see the animals. There are chickens, ducks and geese, walking around a fenced in area or swimming in what I think is Fly Creek. We fed them some corn, available in gumball-type dispensing machines for twenty-five cents. Note to self: bring more quarters next time.

Steven and I try to get to the Mill at least once every year. I hope to go again in a couple of months, when the drive down will be enhanced by the changing leaves.

Fly Creek Cider Mill is located at 288 Goose St., Fly Creek, NY 13337, phone number 607-547-9692. Their website is www.flycreekcidermill.com. You can also Like them on Facebook.