Windows on Main Street (WOMS) Returns for its 13th Year Starting August 11, 2018

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Artists and Businesses Merge to Make Main Street the Gallery

On Second Saturday, August 11, Beacon’s 1.5 mile long Main Street becomes a 24-hour, 7-day a week gallery space for the next month until September 8, 2018, as site-specific art installations are revealed in 26 Main Street storefront windows in the public art exhibit, Windows on Main Street (WOMS). As you're walking around, do you notice that certain storefront windows are filled with something extra special?

“Artists are paired with local businesses, and together they create a site-specific work of art,” says WOMS 2018 director Diana Currie, who is also participating as an artist in a window this year (you may remember her “yarn bombing” work of Beacon’s iconic Dummy Light in 2015, which triggered a public response to the yarn cozi knitted around the Dummy Light for days after the initial setup). Now in its 13th year, WOMS is a project of BeaconArts, the organization dedicated to organizing, promoting and nurturing the city’s multi-faceted arts community.

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“Windows on Main Street is a fantastic way for local artists - both newcomers and established - to really get more involved in our arts community, and in our community in general,” said Currie.

How to Find the Artists and Windows

A list of this year’s participants, locations, and artist statements can be found at www.windowsonmainstreet.com. Maps of the event are available around town at various locations, including Beacon’s Visitors Center, and participating businesses. You can read about each artist from the Windows on Main Street website when you click on their location. In fact, you should read about the installation "In Memory of Anthony Marra Jr." put on by his sister Catherine E. Marra in Mountain Tops.

The Windows on Main headquarters and “Tiny Windows” exhibit is located at Oak Vino Wine Bar, 389 Main St. Oak Vino and Windows on Main Street will host an opening celebration on August 11, starting at 6 pm. In addition to the “Tiny Windows" exhibit, there will be a live drawing/auction by artist Donna Mikkelsen, a DJ, and complimentary food. Windows on Main Street shirts and totes will also be available for purchase to benefit the project.

Funding Provided By...

This month-long public art event is a project of BeaconArts, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to foster and encourage the advancement of the City of Beacon as a center for arts and culture. This means that Windows on Main is supported BeaconArts' membership income, in addition to any fundraisers and sponsorships that the WOMS team organizes. BeaconArts' Ex-Officio and past president Kelly Ellenwood further explains: "It also means that BeaconArts will always support the event - both financially, and with deeper volunteer commitment."

Windows on Main Street 2018 was also made possible with funds from the Decentralization Program, a re-grant program of the New York State Council on the Arts (with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature) and administered by Arts Mid-Hudson. Sponsorships are also possible for businesses who want to directly sponsor the event. A Little Beacon Blog is a proud media sponsor!

Look for These Windows

Tag us in photos you see, and use the hashtag #WOMS2018 to light up Instagram with the art and add to that hashtag collection. Here's what we have found so far, courtesy Instagrammers:

  Window:  The Chocolate Studio, 494 Main Street   Artist:  Jan Dolan   Photo Credit:  Windows on Main

Window: The Chocolate Studio, 494 Main Street  Artist: Jan Dolan  Photo Credit: Windows on Main

Window: Big Mouth Coffee Roasters 387 Main Street  Artist: Sarah J. Berman  Photo Credit: Windows on Main

  Window:  Vegetalien 504 Main Street   Artist:  Kat Stoutenborough   Photo Credit:  Kat Stoutenborough

Window: Vegetalien 504 Main Street  Artist: Kat Stoutenborough  Photo Credit: Kat Stoutenborough

  Window:  Meyer's Olde Dutch (MOD) 184 Main Street   Artist:  Erica Hauser   Photo Credit:  Windows on Main

Window: Meyer's Olde Dutch (MOD) 184 Main Street  Artist: Erica Hauser  Photo Credit: Windows on Main

  Window:  NFP (New Form Perspective) 504 Main Street   Artist:  Kristen J. Macauley   Photo Credit:  Windows on Main

Window: NFP (New Form Perspective) 504 Main Street  Artist: Kristen J. Macauley  Photo Credit: Windows on Main

  Window:  Oak Vino 389 Main Street   Artist:  Donna Mikkelsen   Photo Credit:  BeaconArts

Window: Oak Vino 389 Main Street  Artist: Donna Mikkelsen  Photo Credit: BeaconArts

  Window:  Ella's Bellas 418 Main Street   Artist:  Judith Kepner Rose   Photo Credit:  Judith Kepner Rose Sculpture

Window: Ella's Bellas 418 Main Street  Artist: Judith Kepner Rose  Photo Credit: Judith Kepner Rose Sculpture

Window: Artifact 17 East Main Street (on way to Dogwood)  Artist: Heather Delaney  Photo Credit: Artifact Beacon

Community Created Post-It Note Art at Library for Windows on Main - Needs You!

 Photo Credit: Howland Public Library, used to give an idea of how the wall could look. Pictured is a Giant Robot Post-it Note Art Wall for illustration purposes.

Photo Credit: Howland Public Library, used to give an idea of how the wall could look. Pictured is a Giant Robot Post-it Note Art Wall for illustration purposes.

Do drop into the Howland Public Library most anytime now through August 11th to make your piece of Post-It Note Art for their Post-It Note Community Art Wall. The Community Art Wall is part of this year's Windows on Main Street public art installation, of which the Howland Public Library is a participant. People of all ages are invited to create a post-it note sized creation for the Community Art Wall.

Windows on Main Street is an annual exhibit that pairs artists with storefronts along Beacon's Main Street. This year, 26 Main Street businesses are participating, and for the library's exhibit, you're invited to be one of the contributing artists. The exhibit will be up for one month.

A rainbow of sticky notes and a ton of art supplies will be available to inspire you. This is a great impromptu summer activity as you're looking for things to do in Beacon on Main Street. Please note, the Post-it Note Art maker station may not be open during some programs at the library.

The library is located in the middle of Beacon's downtown at 313 Main Street, near Glazed Over Donuts.

Local Filmmakers! A Night of New Paltz Shorts Seeking Submissions

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Are you a local filmmaker? Do you have a short film, documentary, or music video you want to premiere?

New Paltz Shorts is calling all short films that have either been made by a filmmaker who lives in New Paltz, or have been shot in New Paltz, for a night of screenings on Monday, August 20 at the Water Street Market. Come see local films projected on a 40-foot screen, and support the growing talent pool in the Hudson Valley.

There is NO FEE to enter and the deadline is Wednesday, August 1, 2018. You can learn more about this event on their Facebook event page.   

Special thanks to The Cinehub for passing along this information. To keep up with what is going on in the film industry within the Hudson Valley, sign up for their newsletter!

Found Some Red Dot Beacon Open Studios and Saw This

While out perusing the studios, we happened to find the original artwork used for the Beacon Open Studios brochure map this year! The artist, RoArt, was showing at Spire Studios, and we featured her last year as well! She works at a foundry, and after finishing some painting work on a sculpture, she laid the paintbrushes down in a circle. She was captivated by the fanned-out arrangement and colors, so she captured the brush scene, then painted them vibrantly.

The tools in the picture are from metalsmith Kit Burke-Smith. She brought her tools down from her upstairs studio to show and tell curious visitors what they do and how they were used to create different pieces of jewelry.

The next house was on Orchard, but we were too late to go inside. Lucky for us, plenty of work was on display in the window! Then we headed over to see Stanley Lindwasser’s house/studio, down Lafayette Avenue opposite Tompkins Terrace, but the sky grew so ominous that we vowed to return tomorrow.

Where did you hop? 

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Hunting for Beacon Open Studios! Follow the Red Dots

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Part of the thrill of experiencing Beacon Open Studios is finding each studio somewhere in Beacon. Similar to how we hunt for Christmas lights at night, we drive or jog around town looking for the red dot in yards and sidewalks, signaling that there is an artist inside waiting to show you their actual studio and finished (or unfinished) art. Step inside to see the studio in this picture, and you'll discover the metalsmith Kit Burke-Smith at 5 Orchard Place.

You can pick up an actual map in different shops around town, or here at our office at A Little Beacon Blog. Once again, we are a proud sponsor of this event, as it’s one of our favorites of the indoor/outdoor events that define Beacon. Or you can get the map on your phone, by going to the Beacon Open Studios website, for a really slick experience to help you hit the artists' studios you want. 

Ambling is encouraged! 

Windows On Main Street 2018 Seeking Submissions For Artists and Sponsors - Deadline June 1st

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Are you planning to take part in this year's Windows On Main Street here in Beacon? Get your submission ready, because the deadline to sign up as an artist or sponsr is Friday, June 1, 2018. The opening party will be held Saturday, August 11, 2018 at Oak Vino Wine Bar at 389 Main St.

A Little Beacon Blog is a proud sponsor of this event, and we look forward to seeing how it will turn out, and what kind of conversations it will start. Remember yarnbombing?

And the 2018 Theme Is...

There is no theme this year! Artists are encouraged to make this year's installation truly their own, with organizers' encouragement to share the best representation of the artist's work. Says Diana Currie, organizer of WOMS, "Our hope is that the freedom of having no theme this year will push participants to create some exceptional work."

Sponsorship packages  are open now and range from $25 to $250, which includes online and print advertisement options. Businesses who are interested in making their storefront windows available for the exhibition can email windowsonmainstreet@gmail.com. Participating artists can apply here. Artists must install their work at the partner business between Monday, August 6, and Friday, August 10.

Visit www.windowsonmainstreet.com or email windowsonmainstreet@gmail.com if you have questions or would like more information.

Beacon Open Studios Maps Are Here!

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Our most favoritest artist holiday of the year! Beacon Open Studios is coming to artists' studios all over town, Saturday, April 28 and Sunday, April 29! The kick-off party is the Friday night before, on April 27 at Oak Vino, from 6 to 9 pm, and you're invited! Get the event's brochure - with a map! - here at A Little Beacon Blog’s Office, at 291 Main Street, First Floor, First Door. A Little Beacon Blog is a proud sponsor of Beacon Open Studios!

We highly recommend participating in this weekend-only event. It only happens once a year. You get to see inside the home studios of artists you’ve never heard of, who produce incredible work. See our past articles on Beacon Open Studios, including views into a few of the studios. Some participating artists are professionals in other fields, who commute to other places during the week, and only show off their passionate works in their studios here in Beacon. You never know who you will discover as an artist, or why.  

Put this date in your calendar as a must-do. You can even check out the art while out walking, since the studios are all over Beacon. Planning studio visits is flexible and commitment-free! (Just make sure that you do in fact go.)

Newburgh Gets Creative Neighborhood Loan Fund From Rhinebeck Bank and Hudson Valley Pattern for Progress

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A six-block radius of Newburgh has access to newly established capital through a program called the Creative Neighborhood Loan Fund, through the efforts of Hudson Valley Pattern for Progress and Rhinebeck Bank. According to a press release announcing the loan, Hudson Valley Pattern for Progress has launched an economic development plan with a goal of improving the business climate in an approximate six square block area within the City of Newburgh, near furniture maker and studio space rental initiative Atlas Industries, and SUNY Orange’s City of Newburgh campus. The zone roughly includes an area bordered on the north by Catherine Street and on the south by South William Street. To the west, it is bordered by South Johnston Street and to the east by River Road. See the full map here.

Rhinebeck Bank is enhancing the efforts of Hudson Valley Pattern for Progress on this project by "allocating $3 million of our loan portfolio to fund secured-term loans including commercial express loans, equipment and vehicle purchases, leasehold improvements and real estate transactions under favorable pricing, advance rates and terms to the prospective borrowers in the Newburgh Creative Neighborhood," according to their website.

Says Rhinebeck Bank's president and CEO, Mike Quinn in a press release from Pattern for Progress: “There’s a lot of great ideas, but just an idea doesn’t do it,” he said. “It needs financing [and] it needs advice.”

A business who has already benefited from the Creative Neighborhood Loan Fund is one of Newburgh's newest businesses, Liberty Street Bistro. Owner and Chef Michael Kelly discusses it here with Michelle Barone-Lepore.

For more information on applying for this loan, reach out to Hudson Valley Pattern for Progress, at rdegroat@pfprogress.org or call (845) 565-4900, or to Rhinebeck Bank's Richard J. Kolosky, Commercial Lending Director, Hudson Valley West, at rkolosky@rhinebeckbank.com or (845) 790-1538.

Editorial Note: Rhinebeck Bank is a sponsor of A Little Beacon Blog, but this article is not related to their campaign. A Little Beacon Blog learned about the program and thought readers would like to know more about it, as more Beaconites look to Newburgh for business space innitiatives.

Groups for Writers Proliferate in Beacon

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It’s a good time to be a writer in Beacon! If you are an aspiring wordsmith, an accomplished author, or looking to find a supportive literary community to help you work though a current project, there are so many resources for you right now. Here’s a rundown of some of what’s currently on tap.

Get Lit Beacon

This fabulous new literary salon, started by talented local author Julie Chibbaro (National Jewish Book Award winner for Deadly, a Junior Library Guild Selection for Into the Dangerous World, and American Book Award winner for Redemption), meets on the second Sunday of each month at Oak Vino Wine Bar at 389 Main St. You can find out more on the group's Facebook Page, but the idea is that it’s a casual gathering where published and aspiring adult writers of any genre can hang out, have a glass of wine and share their work. Feeling like expressing yourself? There’s a sign-up sheet at the door if you want to read aloud. Chibbaro reveals the genesis of the group: “I started this event because I often hear about other writers in my town, but since I’m a homebody, I don’t get to meet them. This is a way for me to invite them out and hear their work.”

There have been two Get Lit salon events so far, and they were both inspiring and well-attended. The next one, scheduled for Sunday, March 11, will feature a reading by novelist and children’s book author Jennifer Castle.

High School Writing Lab & Zine Club

Are you a teen and a writer? Beacon has you covered, too. The Howland Library has a writing group for teens designed to provide support, assistance, and encouragement for students in grades 9-12 who are working on school or creative writing projects and college essays. There’s also a Zine Club for writers, artists, and photographers (the next meeting is Friday, March 16, from 3 to 5 pm). More info about this and other great library offerings for teens can be found here on the Howland Public LIbrary's website (the top says February but it is March's events). In the past, the library has offered help sessions for writers in high school.

Other Goings-On for Writers at the Howland Public Library

Also at the library is an ongoing Book Club, an upcoming book launch for Judith Filc (Thursday, April 12). The Howland Library just hosted (on Saturday, March 3) a memoir-writing workshop for adults with Donna Minkowitz, the author of two memoirs, Ferocious Romance (a Lambda Literary Award winner) and Growing Up Golem (a finalist for both a Lambda Literary Award and the Judy Grahn Nonfiction Award). Donna became known for her coverage of gay and lesbian politics and culture in The Village Voice from the late 1980s through the mid-1990s, for which she won a GLAAD Media Award. She is a former feature writer for the Village Voice, and has also written for New York magazine, Ms., The Collagist, The Advocate, and Newsday. She teaches with the New York Writers Workshop and independently - sometimes in Beacon!

The Artist’s Way – A Creative Cluster

For folks who want to reflect on their own creative process, or tap into something that needs unclogged, this Creative Cluster is an exciting and creative group that meets at A Little Beacon Space on Sundays. It loosely follows the classic book, The Artist's Way, created and written by Julia Cameron. The group is being “lightly led” by Katie Hellmuth Martin. According to the event page's description, this is a “gentle group, where people who are reading the book and going through their journey can share their thoughts and connect with others.” Artists, Non-Artists, Regular People, and People Who Want To Be An Artist But Think They Are Far From Being An Artist are welcome. This session runs from March to May and is full, but check back for info about the next session. Lots of answers to all of your questions about participating can be found here.

Classes, Readings and Book Clubs

Around town, several writing groups who would like to remain anonymous meet regularly at various watering holes and other locations. At their meetings, more active or professional writers workshop their projects and critique one another’s work. There's even a secret writers' group who won't reveal their details, but we can tell you that they meet inside of The Telephone Building, which is also the location of A Little Beacon Blog's office. They are so elusive and quiet as they hide behind their laptops, that we can only tell you that it’s for writers who have been published in national magazines and so forth.

If you are interested in small writers workshops or classes, poets Ruth Danon will soon be offering some in Beacon, while Jeffrey McDaniel offers workshops in Cold Spring. And Julie Chibbaro, of Get Lit Salon fame, also offers a writing workshop that is mostly for fiction and non-fiction writers.

On Facebook, there are a few Book Clubs, like The Beacon Book Club, and The Beacon Moms Book Club.

Finally, we can’t pass up a chance to big-up Binnacle Books at 321 Main St., Beacon, NY. They offer an impressive selection of books, a willingness to order anything we want as long as it’s available, and a number of great readings, events and book club meetings.

Plus, see here for the great lengths gone to by Beacon Reads, the little bookstore next to the Howland Public Library. Proceeds from their book sales (of donations and retired library books) go toward the Howland Public Library. In this photo below, a volunteer from Beacon Reads hand-delivered a copy of The Artist's Way to the first meeting of the creative cluster.

 A volunteer from Beacon Reads (left) hand-delivered a copy of  The Artist's Way  to a study group participant, Martha P. Humphreys (right). Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

A volunteer from Beacon Reads (left) hand-delivered a copy of The Artist's Way to a study group participant, Martha P. Humphreys (right).
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Storefront Comes to Life with Book Signing by Photographer Ronnie Farley

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For those who like to find tucked away events that may fly past your radar, then the book signing (dare I call it a pop-up book signing?) by renowned photographer Ronnie Farley is for you. It takes place over October's Second Saturday weekend, Saturday, October 14, and Sunday, October 15, from noon to 8 pm. The storefront space is that of the designer Gwenno James, and is across from The Roundhouse, and down the street from Dogwood.

Ronnie has just released a new photo book "documenting the 'chemtrails' (albedo modification) and other geoengineering effects on the atmosphere in the lower Hudson Valley in New York," according to her website. Books, prints, paintings and T-shirts by Ronnie will be available. This is your chance to get art that is otherwise hard to find. You'll also get exposure to a special performance by Craig Chin of Errant Space: Ambient Soundscapes from 5 to 7 pm.

Ronnie lives in Beacon, and is a well-respected and documented photographer. If you'd like to experience some inspiration, check out her body of work below (and check out her impactful portrait photography here). This may push you over the edge to add this book signing to your to-see list for a wildly busy Second Saturday (we have the full Second Saturday Guide for you here!).

Ronnie Farley is an award-winning fine art and editorial photographer. Ronnie's books include Women of the Native Struggle: Portraits and Testimony of Native American Women (Crown), Cowgirls: Contemporary Portraits of the American West (Crown/ Thunder’s Mouth Press), Diary of a Pedestrian: A New York Photo Memoir (Third Eye Press), New York Water Towers (KMW Studio) and the latest, Ghost Plane (Third Eye Press).

Ronnie's work has been shown both nationally and internationally, and has been critically acclaimed by The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Huffington Post. Her work is also in the permanent collections of the Museum of the City of New York, The National Museum of the American Indian in New York City, The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum in Cleveland, Ohio, The Nicolaysen Museum (Casper, Wyoming), and the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame (Fort Worth, Texas). Her images have appeared in Rolling Stone, USA Today, Sierra Magazine, Western Horseman and The Sunday Times of London.

In addition to her own photography, Ronnie Farley’s career includes working for the Associated Press in New York City over a span of 20 years as a photographer, a photo librarian, and a national photo editor.