Cochecton General Store

Cochecton General Store
Cochecton is a town Sullivan County, New York, along the Delaware River at the Pennsylvania border. It is part of the Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River area, which is managed by the National Park Service. Built in 1860, Reilly’s Store was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1992. It reopened in 2002, but has once again closed. There are less people living in Cochecton today than when the store first opened 159 years ago.
Advertisements

Town & Country Antiques

Town & Country Antiques
Sign for Town & Country Antiques, 1 N. Main Street in Liberty, New York. Liberty is part of the famous Catskill Mountain’s Borscht Belt, home to Grossinger’s Old Hotel, a famously opulent (and now abandoned) resort. From the 1920s to the 1970s, New York City Jews flocked to Catskill resorts in the summer months to escape the stifling heat of the city. There were once over 500 resorts and hotels in the area. With increasing religious tolerance and the advent of widespread commercial airliners, many families chose to vacation elsewhere and dozens of these establishments now lay abandoned.

Gnome Chomsky

Gnome Chomsky
Gnome Chomsky,” formerly the world’s largest garden gnome, greets visitors to Kelder’s Farm at 5755 U.S. Route 209 outside the small hamlet of Kerhonkson. Kerhonkson is located in Ulster County, New York along Rondout Creek, which straddles the Catskill Mountains and the Hudson River Valley. John Hutchison and Maria Reidelbach created the statue in 2006.

Western Hotel

Western Hotel
Callicoon, a hamlet in Sullivan County, New York, sits on a bluff overlooking the Delaware River at the Pennsylvania border. It is part of the Upper Delaware Scenic and Recreational River area, which is managed by the National Park Service. The Western Hotel, at 22 Upper Main Street, was built as a private mansion in 1852. It’s currently owned by Irene Nickolai and operated as a hotel, bar, and event center. I believe it was designed in Second Empire style.

Woodbourne Theater

Woodbourne Theater
Woodbourne is a small hamlet in Sullivan County, New York, in the Catskill Mountains along the Neversink River. Designed by local architect Abraham H. Okun and Built in 1938, this Art Deco theater was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2001. Also known as the Center Theatre or Peace Palace, it closed in the 1980s and has sat abandoned ever since.

1969 Woodstock Festival and Bethel Woods Center for the Arts

The 1969 Woodstock Music and Arts Festival, hosted by Max Yasgur on his 600 acre dairy farm northeast of Bethel, Sullivan County, New York, has become an iconic moment in recent American history. The three day concert was, by many accounts, the defining event of 1960s counterculture. Over 300,000 people came out to see iconic musicians like Arlo Guthrie, Joan Baez, Santana, Grateful Dead, The Who, Jefferson Airplane, The Band, and Jimi Hendrix. Today, a concrete memorial marks the location of the sound stage.

In 2006, the sleek Bethel Woods Center for the Arts opened nearby, which features a concert venue and museum of 1960s counterculture. The museum is quite nice, but I got a chuckle out of seeing a bunch of elderly baby boomers holding a corporate event there, complete with waitresses serving hors d’oeuvres. A far cry from the ideals they promoted in their idealistic youth.

Swan Lake’s Stone Castle

One of five built by Italian-American stone mason Joe Moshini in the 1930s, this tiny stone castle is located at 2669-2673 Briscoe Road in Swan Lake, south of Liberty, New York. It formerly sat in front of the grand Commodore Hotel, which burned in a controlled fire in 1979.

From the 1920s to the 1970s, New York City Jews flocked to Catskill resorts like the Commodore for summer vacations. There were once over 500 resorts and hotels in the area, known as the “Borscht Belt“. The hotel’s garden, and its tiny castle, was reclaimed by nature, but in 2013 a group of volunteers restored it and erected signs relating the history of the site.