Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Quad & the fair

Our area is going to be marking a major anniversary next year, the upcoming Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial as well as the planned opening of the Poughkeepsie Railroad Bridge walkway project. During 2009, communities along the Hudson River and Lake Champlain will mark the 400th anniversary (or quadricentennial) of Henry Hudson and Samuel de Champlain's voyages along the river and lake that bear their names and the 200th anniversary of Robert Fulton's successful steamboat voyage and establishment of steam commerce on the Hudson River.

Also, the Poughkeepsie Railroad Bridge Walkway Over the Hudson project is slated for a fall 2009 completion. The project, spearheaded by the nonprofit Walkway Over the Hudson, will connect communities on both sides of the river by providing public access for pedestrians, hikers, joggers, bicyclists and people with disabilities.

The Poughkeepsie Journal recently launched Hudson Happenings, a Web site about what's going on as the Hudson Valley gets ready to celebrate these events. The site has an events calendar and tourism info, as well as breaking news and feature stories, photos, podcasts, interactive Web features and videos about the river valley and its inhabitants, its history and its environment

A companion blog on the Hudson Happenings site, Quad Updates, will provide frequent bits of information about the events, including breaking news from some of the key people involved in that planning as well as a few folks here at the newspaper who are keeping tabs on what's going on.

Since I am involved with coordinating Quad info for the Poughkeepsie Journal, you're likely to see my name popping up frequently as the author of Quad Updates posts. Occasionally, I might write about the same things here on this blog and over there at Quad Updates.

Like last night, when during my visit to the Dutchess County Fair, I saw a Quadricentennial display in one of the main buildings. On the wall is a Hudson River mural celebrating the Quad created by resident-artists in the Fine Arts Program of the Northeast Center for Special Care in Lake Katrine. The Ulster County-based center serves those who are challenged by traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries and related conditions.

The charming and colorful mural depicts the Hudson River and several local landmarks in Dutchess, Ulster and Greene counties. (I photographed a small section of it, above.) It is tucked away in a corner of the building that houses the Grange cafeteria, but on the opposite end closer to the carnival rides. It's well worth checking out.

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