Gratitude Alert: Antalek & Moore Insurance Agency As Lead ALBB Sponsor

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During this holiday season, we’re sending out a simple message of gratitude to one of our first and longest sponsors: Antalek & Moore Insurance Agency. I first met Susan Antalek Pagones during a joint BeaconArts / Beacon Chamber Member Mingle at St. Rocco’s, and it is an evening I will always remember for its illumination of how history is handed down in Beacon.

Right after introducing myself and saying I had just moved here and where my house was, Susan turned to her colleague, Terry Williams, to ask her: “Who’s house is that?” Now, I knew whose house it was from the young family we bought it from (they bought it years ago, and opted to move closer to the mountain), but Susan and Terry knew it from the two generations of the family who had lived there prior.

I have since heard about this other family from our first plumber who could identify the pipes in the basement as his own among the other pipes that were not his work. The next person who knew our home better than me was a handyman I hired for my office to hang an OPEN sign from the ceiling, who it turns out, was friends with the son of the family who owned our home decades ago. They have since both turned into professional home improvement professionals, which makes sense when I notice the creatively custom built details around our home.

Susan teaches me about community-centered business all of the time. Susan, her partner Vince Lemma, and their team of dedicated agents can help make insurance easier for you (home, condo, renters, business, health, car, etc.). Learn about how in this exclusive interview with Susan Antalek Pagones here, and the interview we did with Vince here.

Thank you Team Antalek and Moore for supporting local media and A Little Beacon Blog!

Brewery, Arcade and Event Space Proposed for 511 Fishkill Avenue As Industrial Arts Brewing Co. Looks To Expand To Beacon

The large property of 511 Fishkill Avenue (aka Rte. 52), which is between AutoZone and the Healy Dealership, which is in Beacon, but outside of downtown Beacon, has been acquired by Diamond Properties, a commercial real estate and property management business located in Mount Kisco, New York. This is the old Mechtronics building on 9 acres of property. The property is a 147,500 sf, two-story flex/industrial warehouse and office building and includes loading docks, warehouse, office, and on-site parking, according to the website of Diamond Properties.

The vision is to transform part of the space into a Warehouse, Brewery, Accessory Office, Arcade and Event Space, to accommodate Industrial Arts Brewing Company who would be a tenet in the building, according to the Application submitted by the applicant, DP 108, LLC.

Industrial Arts Brewing Company, who is based in Garnerville, NY, is looking to expand in Beacon by way of this location. The plan would be a new brewery production space with warehouse capacity, and an event space on 2nd floor of the building which could include arcade use. The architect for the project is Aryeh Siegel, who is the architect behind several projects under construction in Beacon, as well as completed projects.

While the intent of use for an arcade is there, Beacon has an older, or vintage if you will, zoning requirement on the books that does not allow for arcades in Beacon, unless they are offering vintage machines.

An excerpt from the arcade zoning law reads like this (which was posted with the 12/11/2018 Planning Board agenda): “Such amusement center shall contain only vintage amusement devices that were built prior to the year 1980 or noncomputerized devices with the exception of first generation computerized games such as those manufactured prior to 1990.”

The requirement also has provisions for noise levels, and that windows are to be kept closed, and doors “open only during ingress and egress,” as well as a calling for no vibrations to occur off the premises. Children under the age of 18 years old would also not be allowed to be in before 3pm (school release time), and that age range cannot operate the machinery after 10pm.

The Public Hearing was triggered after a representative from the project came before the Planning Board during a Planning Board meeting on 12/11/2018 to review the application to amend an existing Site Plan Approval and needed zoning law changed to allow amusement centers that include more than vintage.

During the 12/11/2018 Planning Board meeting, it was explained it this way: “Right now, amusement centers are prohibited unless they are vintage amusement centers. In which case they are allowed by special permit. We are taking that distinction away and just saying ‘Indoor Commercial Recreation is a permissible use.’” The Planning Board discussed amending the old zoning requirement, and then sent their unanimous recommendation of “Yes, Amend” to the City Council for a vote.

In order to vote, the City Council must hold a Public Hearing to hear opinions from the public, which is scheduled for today, Monday December 17, 2018. An email from a Beacon business owner, Paulette Myers-Rich, who owns No. 3 Reading Room & Photo Book Works on Main Street in Beacon, is on file to be present during the Public Hearing, in which Paulette asks that the special permit remain in the legislation in order to give more selection to which business opens where.

According to the proposed draft change of the law, the only proposed change coming from the City Council’s attorney seems to be to the vintage aspect of the zoning requirement.

 Screenshot of the  proposed Draft Change  of the arcade law, which is what is being discussed at a City Council Public Hearing Monday, December 17, 2018.

Screenshot of the proposed Draft Change of the arcade law, which is what is being discussed at a City Council Public Hearing Monday, December 17, 2018.

Stock Up Sandwich Shop To Close; Owners Expanding Marbled In Cold Spring

  Photo Credit: David Ray Martin

Photo Credit: David Ray Martin

Chris and Lisa, the owners of Stock Up, the sandwich shop in Beacon as well as Marbled Meat Shop in Cold Spring, announced their intentions to close their Beacon location by December 30, 2018. The 29 Teller Avenue location was the former home of longtime local favorite, The Copper Roof, which was a deli. Stock Up opened in early 2016 with the intention of making responsibly sourced meat and a variety of vegetables more accessible to Beaconites.

Closing a business is always a difficult choice, filled with many variables leading up the decision. According to their announcement made on Instagram, the main reasons were the need to spend more time with their young family, and the reluctance to raise prices or change their high-quality offerings in order to increase profit margins.

 

Stock Up’s Announcement via Instagram:

Hey Neighbors,

December 30th will be our last day in Beacon. We gave it everything, met some incredible people on the both sides of the counter, and really enjoyed our time here. We can no longer put our energy into 29 Teller Avenue. Our kid misses us and we are spinning our wheels to keep our doors open week after week. So many of you want to know what happened. The truth is, we could not make this space and this overhead work without a significant increase in menu prices or a complete overhaul of the program. We weren’t up for either. We’ve taken side jobs and cut our team in half. 2018 saw a significant drop in sales across the Hudson Valley and we’ve fallen too far behind to make it through another Hudson Valley winter. We can go on and on. Instead, let us focus on the positive. Come see us in the next three weeks, share a sandwich, a beer, a story. We will miss being part of the neighborhood but know that this is the best thing for our family.

 

Other Beacon businesses like Hudson Valley Vinyl, Titos, Ella’s Bellas, The Studio Beacon, Artisan Wine Shop and Echo rallied around the restaurant in the announcement’s Comments section, and even Black Vanilla from across the river in Newburgh, as well as Signal Fire Bread and Industrial Arts Brewing and voiced their support and respect for such a hard decision.

Stock Up Devotees Lament And Vow To Eat As Much As Possible Until Last Day In Beacon

Stock Up started as a promise to people who loved good, clean, food. They sprouted their own quinoa in their basement. They cured their own meat. Important to them was offering serious cuts of responsibly sourced meat and poultry, paired with seriously good for you vegetable and grain options.

Customers’ reactions were swift to immediately crave menu staples like:

  • The Big Bird (fried chicken, stock up sauce, natural pickles, crisp greens, on organic Bread Alone brioche)

  • The Breakfast Bird (fried chicken, bacon, fried egg, Mike’s Hot Honey and crisp greens on organic Bread Alone brioche)

  • Downstate BEC (two fried eggs, housemade heritage bacon, cheddar, and spicy ketchup on organic ciabatta)

Over 220 comments have been made so far saying goodbye on the announcement post, including these:

@icicles2 “I’m so sad. Stock Up is our favorite place. This is going to leave a huge void.”

@pipsqueeaak “Literally in tears. You guys will be missed so freaking badly.”

@thyme_co “I’m so sorry to hear this. Thank you for your wonderful food! You’re an inspiration. Good luck on your next adventure!”

@janellefelder …”I will forever be craving your fried chicken sandwich. Best ever! Will get a couple of more in during your final weeks. Best of luck to you in the future.”

@laur1025 “Barry will definitely miss the smell of cured meat when he plays in the backyard.”

@huggyhbomb “We will just have to get in the car and come see you at Marbled Meat Shop.”

The Good Food Dream Continues In Cold Spring at Marbled Meat Shop

Some of Stock Up’s offerings can be found in Chris and Lisa’s original shop in Cold Spring, Marbled Meat, which involves a beautiful drive down a wooded section of 9D, and then crossing over to the rural section of Route 9 (a good excuse to get to know the differences between these closely named roads!).

While the full menu of Stock Up will not be available, the couple is offering a small lunch menu and more prepared foods in Marbled. Said owner Lisa Marie Hall in the Instagram comments of the announcement: “We will be going back to our meat shop roots.”

Marbled Meat Shop opened in Cold Spring in 2014 in the compound of shops on Route 9 that include Vera’s Marketplace (famous for their homemade donuts, mozzarella, produce, and amazing everything) and The Pantry (famous for their expanding line of roasted coffees). This is quite a delicious strip of food heaven!

According to an e-newsletter from their neighbor The Pantry on November 8th, 2018, Marbled Meat Shop expanded to offer more: “As new ideas continued to develop, Chris and Lisa were unsure if an expansion would be possible at Route 9 or if they would need to relocate. The Giordano family (who owns Vera's Marketplace & Garden Center) graciously designed new larger space for Marbled so that they could have more retail and production space. Come on by and see their new special space, located between Vera's entrance and our storefront.”

Chris and Lisa have explained on their Marbled Meat Shop website that they considered moving their Cold Spring location in order to expand their business in the direction of a wholesale sausage, house-made cured meats and charcuterie options. Their landlord responded with a plan. Says Chris on Marbled’s website: “Dominic called us in to hear their proposal. He stood in the center of Vera’s market, and said ‘you’re not going anywhere, we will make this work.’ What came next was a plan that kept us, The Pantry and Vera’s operating under the same roof while giving us the space we need to grow.”

Beacon Destinations For Responsibly Sourced Meats and Vegies

While there is a void with Stock Up gone (most of the renters of A Little Beacon Space like edible Hudson Valley would get their catered lunch from them!), there are other options for high-quality, creative food. Barb’s Butchery is extremely selective with their meats and is known for constantly inventing new flavors of their sausage, which are celebrated during their annual Sausage Fest. Homespun is a Beacon staple (with a second location down at Dia) and Kitchen Sink and Meyers Old Dutch offer farm to table - some of which is from their own family farm. Beacon Pantry is known for their European selection of cheeses (and recently expanded in their location to make cheese and their sit-down cafe exclusive of each other). Beacon Natural has a daily selection of freshly prepared foods for a quick but healthy lunch or dinner, and Ella’s Bellas is the destination for gluten free baked goods and cafe experience. Beacon’s Farmer’s Market, which has moved to their inside Winter location at the Memorial Building (aka the Veteran’s Building) also makes available fresh produce, meats, poultry, fish, pickles, baked goods, and even home goods from a variety of vendors and farms.

Even more delicious restaurants are available in Beacon. Just check A Little Beacon Blog’s Restaurant Guide to learn more about them.

Wishing Chris and Lisa all of the best as they grow in new directions!

Pop-Up Shop Is OPEN! Holiday Artisans At A Little Beacon Space

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WHERE: 291 Main St, Beacon, NY 12508
The Telephone Building
First Floor, First Door
WHEN: December 8th
Saturday: 11am-8pm

Going on now for one day only, the Artisan Holiday Pop-Up Shop at A Little Beacon Space! Most of these artisans are not in stores, so you can only find them during pop-up occasions such as this. Organized by Susan Labodin, designer and founder of Allegory, this pop-up shop features 5 talents: the painter Anna West, the ceramics artist MossPocket, the fabric enthusiast reklaimed, and the fun dog collars (she brought the ones that you can color!) Teller Hill.

This pop-up shop is extra special because one of the artists, Kat Stoutenborough of reklaimed, was an original pop-up shop creator here in Beacon. Some of you may remember Cherry Bomb, which exploded into Zora Dora's for at least two years during the winter season (the spot has been occupied by different pop-ups ever since).

Kat's creation inspired A Little Beacon Blog to incorporate pop-up shops into our business model when we took the office space on Main Street in the Telephone Building. Kat's ability to bring dozens of artists together in a retail community during the winter months was exceptional, and created lasting relationships.


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ALREADY SHOPPED
Not gonna lie...we have already shopped this pop-up and did take home a few spoons - but left some for you! The reklaimed pins are flying off her table, Teller Hill's adult-coloring dog collars are a no-brainer for the dog owner on your gift list.

Main Street Beacon Is OPEN After The Snow Storm!

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Friday may be a snow day for every parent in the Beacon City School District and other private schools, but businesses are open on Main Street in Beacon. These business owners are resilient, and some were out with their shovels on Thursday night as the snow fell, pre-clearing the sidewalks for Friday morning’s forecast of rain.

Sleet did fall at 6:30 am at least, making for slippery and dangerous roadways, but come the 9 am hour, snow was falling, and by 1 pm, we are in full blue sky and sunshine.

How is the parking, you ask? Eh, skip the parking, just get your winter boots on and come on out! Let today be your day to ride the free Beacon bus up and down Main Street. Hail it from wherever, and get off whenever.

Here is a sampling of who you can go see on this snow day, and beyond into the weekend!

 Hot off the grill at Barb’s Butchery. Hungry!  Photo Credit:    Barb’s Butchery

Hot off the grill at Barb’s Butchery. Hungry!
Photo Credit: Barb’s Butchery

 Luxe Optique, the stylists will see you now! Clearly, this picture was from before the snow fell, but they are still open.  Photo Credit:    Luxe Optique

Luxe Optique, the stylists will see you now! Clearly, this picture was from before the snow fell, but they are still open.
Photo Credit: Luxe Optique

 Emily at Utensil is a steady-eddy - always open! And now in her new location on the west end of town near Mountain Tops. She probably sells hot chocolate powder inside…   Photo Credit: Utensil

Emily at Utensil is a steady-eddy - always open! And now in her new location on the west end of town near Mountain Tops. She probably sells hot chocolate powder inside…
Photo Credit: Utensil

 You can’t keep these bakers away! Ella’s Bellas is all dug out, open for business. making up some chocolate ganache this morning.   Photo Credit: Ella’s Bellas

You can’t keep these bakers away! Ella’s Bellas is all dug out, open for business. making up some chocolate ganache this morning.
Photo Credit: Ella’s Bellas

 Because what Are you gonna do on a snow day… stitch and stuff cute critters of course! That, and yarn and fabric inside at Beetle and Fred.   Photo Credit: Beetle and Fred

Because what Are you gonna do on a snow day… stitch and stuff cute critters of course! That, and yarn and fabric inside at Beetle and Fred.
Photo Credit: Beetle and Fred

 Lambs Hill Bridal Boutique at the base of the mountain is not open today due to snow, but this is the view from the  Lambs Hill Wedding Venue  at the top of Mount Beacon, overlooking the city-town. Photo Credit:  Lambs Hill

Lambs Hill Bridal Boutique at the base of the mountain is not open today due to snow, but this is the view from the Lambs Hill Wedding Venue at the top of Mount Beacon, overlooking the city-town.
Photo Credit: Lambs Hill

Luxe Optique Expands Next Door - Use The Door On Right!

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Luxe Optique came to Beacon about two years ago. It wasn’t the first glasses store that owner Laurie Riehle had opened - and it won’t even be her last. Prior to coming to Beacon with her loyal crew, Laurie sold her optics shop in Warwick, NY, but couldn’t sit still. She moved into 183 Main Street, the spot on the corner of Main Street and Cliff Street that had been the location of School of Jellyfish, the curious combo shop that was half sustainable architecture teachings, and half hot chocolate bar and source of an award-winning truffle (really, it was a place to present green architecture with bait of really good chocolate - it worked).

After a time, the building that housed Luxe Optique went up for sale, and Laurie went for it. She bought the building, which included two storefronts. At the time, Beacon Pilates was upstairs (they have since moved to West Main Street by Brett’s Hardware, with better parking - and you can always find their outpost at All Sport) and Bellus on Main, one of my personal favorite boutiques while they were here for high-end shoes.

Stretchin’ Their Legs

Luxe Optique are collectors of distinct lines of hand-crafted glasses, and have fantastic eye doctors to give eye exams to adults and kids in their store for glasses and contact prescriptions. You can see how Luxe Optique quickly got crowded with their ever-growing number of frames for kids and adults, and the eye exam office. Luxe Optique began an expansion into the second storefront. For now, the original side of the store on the left is under construction, and the new side on the right is open!

Look for the following enhancements when the work is complete:

  • A larger selection of children's frames - getting a thorough eye exam is really easy.

  • A larger selection of sophisticated affordable brands to make sure everyone has access to good quality eyewear, no matter the budget.

  • A private lounge that patients can book (for free) to secure time with an optician like Ryon, Christos, Julia, or Laurie herself so they can receive the best experience possible.

  • And an overall facelift!

Keep your eyes on these folks - and get some new glasses and an exam to see everything better.

P.S.: Luxe Optique is known for making super-fine adjustments to glasses. For those with particularly tricky prescriptions, going there is like therapy for your glasses while the pros adjust them.


Editorial Note: Luxe Optique is a sponsor of A Little Beacon Blog, but this article is not a part of their campaign. Their expansion is part of the energy and Shopping Guide Shuffle on this end out town. Do see their listing with more pictures in our Shopping Guide.

Utensil Kitchenware Moving Across Town In Latest Building Renovation

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You’ve driven by it countless times - the construction going on at 143 Main Street, the building that formerly held the office for Shane Hobel’s The Mountain Scout Survival School. Prior to that storefront, the space was the location for the art gallery Fovea before it moved across and up the street to the second floor of Hudson Beacon Glass.

Slated for a Saturday, November 10, 2018, grand opening, Utensil Kitchenware, owned by Emily Burke, will move from her location on the east end of town to this larger, fully renovated space on the West End. Emily and her architect husband designed it specifically to fit the kitchenware store.

The store has always held a cozy collection of pretty much any kitchenware item you needed - or didn’t know you needed - and now will offer an interactive demonstration space so that you can learn how to use the gadgets that Emily has discovered. The front doors have been expanded to be double doors, the front windows enlarged. If you’ve walked by, you may have seen exciting red ceiling beams on the inside.

The building Utensil originally opened in is currently for sale. Says Emily of her new location: “I am really excited about this new chapter. Although I will miss the East End, I think the community will like the new location too. I secured a long-term lease at 143 Main Street a very fair rate. The building owner is a great guy who really cares about Main Street, the tenants and building renovations.”

 Newest shop, Darry'l’s Contemporary Women’s Clothing, opened in former Nella’s Bellas, which had been Global Home.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Newest shop, Darry'l’s Contemporary Women’s Clothing, opened in former Nella’s Bellas, which had been Global Home.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Fun Fact for Beacon Trivia Lovers: This is not Emily’s first time working on this end of town. She worked at the home decor shop, Global Home, before it pulled up its pins several years ago. That location was later occupied by Nella’s Bellas, and now Darryl’s Contemporary Women’s Clothing. (A brand new shop… looks like they are also in Rhinebeck and NYC on Amsterdam of the UWS… We are investigating!)

West End Of Beacon’s Main Street Is Basically Getting Renovated

There’s a lot going on at this end of town - referred to often here as “the west end of town near the train” - from building renovations to business relocations. This change started when a large swath of property - 20 parcels - changed hands from the Piccone family (see our coverage in “Top Nabisco Pressman Starts Over At Age 54 To Open Salon - Mr. Bell’s Story”) to new owners in one of the largest real estate deals in Beacon’s history.

 Colorant, now located at 146 Main Street started out inside of Beacon Healing Massage as a pop-up shop, turned perma-pop-up shop, and now has a permanent home across the street in the space formerly occupied by Miss Vickie’s Music.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Colorant, now located at 146 Main Street started out inside of Beacon Healing Massage as a pop-up shop, turned perma-pop-up shop, and now has a permanent home across the street in the space formerly occupied by Miss Vickie’s Music.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Storefront shops always come and go on any Main Street, but taking a moment to reflect on what’s going on, not only has their been an ongoing Shopping Guide Shuffle since the summer, but there are building improvements as well.

Renovations Have Begun

At first blush, one might think that a bunch of new businesses are moving in. However, Beacon businesses already located here, for the most part, are simply moving around. The first major move and renovation was to Colorant’s space, which used to be a seasonal pop-up shop in Beacon Healing Massage’s space, which is right next door to the (now former) Mountain Scout office. Beacon Healing Massage’s new neighbor will be Utensil.

Colorant transitioned into a perma-pop-up in the Beacon Healing Massage space, and then officially moved out and across the street into the studio where Miss Vickie hung her musical shingle - but not before that space was totally renovated for Colorant. Miss Vickie has since moved to another location owned by the same people a few blocks up, down the alley near the shoe cobbler and Mr. Bell’s barbershop.

 Miss Vickie’s Music, down the alley near Mr. Bell’s barbershop.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Miss Vickie’s Music, down the alley near Mr. Bell’s barbershop.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

reMADE, the boutique carrying handmade Hudson Valley items recently closed, yet the space has re-opened as a new store - Lewis and Pine. The new shop, however, occupies half the space. The store was essentially two stores inside with an existing wall and door separating the two. This can make for an awkward layout - or not - depending on how you set it up. The space will now be two storefronts.

Says Liz Ferrera, owner of reMADE and PAX Studios of her decision to close the shop: “For me personally, the decision to close reMADE was primarily ‘life getting in the way.’ More specifically, aging parents and my desire to learn all that I can from them while I have the opportunity. The maker community in the Hudson Valley is just incredible! The craftsmanship and creativity that I saw being produced just blew me away. Educating people on the benefits of handmade will continue to be my passion.”

Wait - Where Is Mountain Scout Going?

 A survival training workshop on the Mountain Scout property in Hopewell JuncTion.  Photo Credit:    The Mountain Scout Instagram

A survival training workshop on the Mountain Scout property in Hopewell JuncTion.
Photo Credit: The Mountain Scout Instagram

The inside of the Mountain Scout office was really neat, and was set up as if you were outside in the wilderness. The Mountain Scout trains in survival tactics in the wilderness and taps into primitive stuff we humans otherwise may have disconnected from thanks to modern technologies. The true training takes place on several acres of land that Mountain Scout owns in Hopewell Junction, just 5 minutes from I-84 or the Taconic.

The big, tan Mountain Scout passenger van you see driving around Beacon is part of their offerings of shuttling clients to and from the Beacon train station to their land in Hopewell Junction for workshops or private trainings. His classes are just so neat - you should check them out for survival tactics for kids or adults, including Family Emergency Planning.

Meanwhile… On The East Side Of Beacon Near The Mountain

There are incredible finds! So many shops, galleries and eateries. We have a few articles slated to tell you about them, but a lot of good stuff. Loopy Mango (giant yarn), the No. 3 Reading Room for extremely rare art books and interesting print things not found in art galleries or book stores, The Vault for creative cocktails and one of the best baby kale Caesar salads, and Jeffrey Terreson’s curious dimensional paintings.

Eat up our write-ups of all of the shops in A Little Beacon Blog’s Shopping Guide, and the eateries in our Restaurant Guide. Don’t miss our Brunch Guide, of course!

Fairies Are Here...The Cutie Night Collection That Comes Out At Beacon Fine Jewelers

Love these little cuties every time they get put out at night in the storefront window of Beacon Fine Jewelers. They are part of the collection of miniature things that the son (of the father-son team) 🔥 fires up inside in the back of the store.

Not sure where this store is? 284 Main Street. Beacon Fine Jewelers are in the middle of Main Street, across the way from EnotecaAma. We profiled them last Holiday season, so check them out!

Really good gift ideas are in store for collectors in your life... or the real life fairies 🧚‍♀️ you find in your house... We’re just sayin’.

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JOB LISTING: Research Assistant for Media Resources at Tin Shingle (Part-Time)

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This is a job alert for Tin Shingle, a national company that shares an office and a brain with A Little Beacon Blog. It would be really fun to find someone in Beacon for this job, even though it is a work-from-home-or-wherever job. There are a few requirements (like being a strong typer and someone who likes to do deep-dive research), so take a read and see if it’s a fit for you or someone you know!

ABOUT TIN SHINGLE

Tin Shingle is a training center and community for business owners, artists and makers who are promoting their brands. Tin Shingle puts the power of PR, social media, SEO, eNewsletter and design theory directly into the hands of creators, along with resources they can tap into any time. Crafted by business owners for business owners, Tin Shingle's programming trains people in how to get publicity, how to have sha-zam! social media streams, and how to master newsletter marketing. Tin Shingle offers a subscription membership where people can access different resources to improve their outreach. You can learn about that here.

JOB DESCRIPTION:

The person who is the right fit for this assignment loves to dig online, research who‘s writing what in the media, and can’t help but get sparked with article ideas from the research. If you don’t know what an Editorial Calendar is, but you want to learn, that is great.

This Research Assistant position will be hunting and gathering for two of Tin Shingle’s resource databases, made available to our business and artist members who are pitching the media with article and story ideas:. The databases? Editorial Calendars and Media Contacts.

Editorial Calendars: These are PDFs put out by magazines that present what a magazine will be generally about for each issue. It’s a great way to know when a magazine will be doing their Back to School issue, or the big Gear Guide, or The Innovator Issue. The Research Assistant Googles and finds these PDFs online (usually found in Media Kits), or emails sales reps in the advertising department of a magazine to ask for the latest plans. Monthly themes are then typed up by the Research Assistant and imported into Tin Shingle’s database.

Media Contacts: Basic contact information for people who work in magazines, TV, podcasts, radio and blogs are available for Tin Shingle’s members to search through. We start our research in a bigger media database called Meltwater, and then whittle down that list by our own cross-checking research to make sure a person still works there, or works in a different capacity (maybe a top editor moved from a full-time position to a part-time contributing writer at a publication). Job assignments will be to take a deep dive into a media outlet (Vogue) or a subject (Spirituality) to gather or update fresh information.

Please Note: This is a not a free ride into Meltwater for a PR professional looking for contacts for their own clients. This is a research position that involves cross-checking and communication with Tin Shingle’s owner Katie to make sure we are updating people correctly. If you are a PR professional who really wants this gig, you can apply, but know that there are deliverables for each assignment and you won’t be pitching the media for this.

Skill Sets Needed for This Job:

  • Fast Typer: You will be copying and pasting a lot, and may be re-writing in order for Tin Shingle’s members to get a better read on a person or magazine theme.

  • Fluid In Social Media: While researching a media contact, you will know how to Google and search to verify where someone is working, and what they tend to write about.

  • Excel Nerd: Everything we do at Tin Shingle is in Excel. Information you find is typed into Excel spreadsheets, and uploaded into Tin Shingle’s database by you (don’t worry - we have step-by-step directions!). A guide to our systems, to keep track of when a media outlet was updated, is also in Excel in Google Drive so that we can stay coordinated and work together from the same document.

  • Communicator: You will be working directly with the owner of Tin Shingle, Katie, giving updates on what you are finding, and any questions or judgment calls you have along the way.

Location

This position is work-from-home (or wherever). You can live in Beacon or California or Colorado or Georgia. Tin Shingle does share an office with A Little Beacon Blog on Beacon’s Main Street, but our Open Hours are irregular. So it’s work-from-wherever to start.

TO APPLY:

Please send cover letter and résumé to katie@tinshingle.com addressed to Katie Hellmuth Martin. Email is best - no need to telephone in.


PAY RATE:

$20/hour, Part Time

Thank you!

We Got Stickers! And Totes! Visit A Little Beacon Blog at Spirit of Beacon Day

This year’s table experience is going to be a little different. For the first time, Main Street businesses are allowed to have a table. Normally the vendor opportunity was reserved for nonprofits, since the genesis of Spirit of Beacon Day was rooted in community organizations and schools coming together to create dialogue and improve relations.

A Little Beacon Blog has a table near our office at 291 Main Street. Come by and say “Hi!” We will be handing out stickers, and selling our first-ever tote bag for $25. We will donate $5 of every bag sold to ARF and the Beacon Historical Society. These two organizations are participating orgs in this year’s Spirit of Beacon Day. Without the Beacon Historical Society, we would not know as much as we do about the many iterations of Beacon. ARF matches homeless dogs and cats with their furever human families. We have 100 totes. So that could be pretty good! 

But first, I’ll be marching with South Avenue Elementary in the parade, as I helped out with making the float.  

See you soon!

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Vogel Pharmacy Relocates To 9D, In Plaza Near Dutchess (Renegades) Stadium (we got pictures!)

 Vogel Pharmacy relocates to 1475 NY-9D, in between Leo’s and the Dollar General, after the building housing its longtime Beacon location was sold to new owners. Pictured above is owner Anthony Valicenti waving from behind his new counter, and a staff member Audra.   Photo Credits: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Vogel Pharmacy relocates to 1475 NY-9D, in between Leo’s and the Dollar General, after the building housing its longtime Beacon location was sold to new owners. Pictured above is owner Anthony Valicenti waving from behind his new counter, and a staff member Audra.
Photo Credits: Katie Hellmuth Martin

 The former location of longtime Beacon business Vogel Pharmacy, on Main Street in Beacon, NY. Vogel has since moved 10 minutes away to the plaza across from Dutchess Stadium, 1475 NY-9D, now serving old and new customers.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

The former location of longtime Beacon business Vogel Pharmacy, on Main Street in Beacon, NY. Vogel has since moved 10 minutes away to the plaza across from Dutchess Stadium, 1475 NY-9D, now serving old and new customers.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

In what is quickly becoming a new series on this blog - perhaps we’ll call it something like “Where did that shop go?” - we’ve been following which Beacon shops are moving where. They are often swapping ends of Main Street, or moving slightly off of Main Street.

We tracked down Vogel Pharmacy, owned by Anthony Valicent. For months, the pharmacy was in the process of moving from its longtime location at 234 Main Street (in the middle of Main Street near Homespun) after the building containing the storefront space they leased was purchased by new owners.

We are longtime customers of Vogel, preferring to get prescriptions filled with a local pharmacy that has deep roots in the community. Not to say we don’t high-five our friends who work at Rite Aid (love that nail polish bar and greeting card section … and remember that time Rite Aid got a total makeover and sliding front doors?), but having a local pharmacy keeps it real.

So Why Did Vogel Leave Downtown Beacon?

vogel vintage wall.jpg

The building at 234 Main Street that housed Vogel Pharmacy was for sale earlier this year. Anthony told us that he considered buying it, but knew the building well, and knew it was in bad shape. When the building did sell to new owners, they had other plans for it that did not include it being occupied for the next bit.

Vogel Pharmacy had been in downtown Beacon for decades. Vogel was one of our “Where Is This?” contest locations when we featured their vintage wall with the original beaker wallpaper. Anthony had worked for Vogel when he was an up and coming pharmacist, and for last 16 years has owned Vogel Pharmacy himself.

The New Vogel - Is The Same! With Gobs More Parking!

VOGEL’S CONTACT INFO:
1475 NY-9D
Wappingers Falls by 12590
Same Phone Number: 845-831-3784
If you call after hours and don’t hear a voice mail, don’t worry. Simply call during their Open hours.

Silver linings are everywhere in this relocation story. For starters, the parking. Vogel serves everyone including the elderly, veterans, kids, and irregular cold and flu patients. The downtown Beacon Main Street location did not have much parking, and walking there has become even more difficult, now that the building is dwarfed by scaffolding to the right of it, and directly across the street, as two multistory buildings are built from the ground up. Homespun has had to put up a sidewalk sign at the end of the block encouraging people to keep walking through the scaffolding to find them.

Now when you drive to Vogel in their new location, you have sooooo much parking. You need a disabled spot? You got it! Is Leo’s busy that night? Is there a sale on detergent at the Dollar General? No problem! There is parking in the back of Vogel or on the other side of the VIP front row parking spots. Already, new customers who live in the area are coming in, thankful for the new pharmacy.

Everything Is Just As It Was At The Old Vogel - Kids Toys, Vaporizers, Eye-Glasses Donation Box

 Inside of Vogel, the aisles are just as they were, and the phone number is the same.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Inside of Vogel, the aisles are just as they were, and the phone number is the same.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Don’t worry, all of your old favorites at Vogel are still there. Even Vogel’s phone number is the same. The Melissa & Doug toys (that are so often marked down) that you can buy your kids when they come with you to pick up a prescription. The eye-glasses donation box. The magazines. Vogel is where I get my monthly issues of Family Circle and Better Homes & Gardens, conveniently placed right next to the cash register, under the Blow Pops.

 Anthony waves from his new perch while filling prescriptions.

Anthony waves from his new perch while filling prescriptions.

Anthony himself is there as usual at the end of the aisles, either filling prescriptions or on the phone. The famous Rx sign hangs outside on Vogel’s new brick wall, just as it did at the other location.

I don’t mind driving down 9D. I look forward to it when I visit Stony Kill Farm, and I even drive my car payment to Rhinebeck Bank’s Beacon Branch - by choice.

Vogel isn’t the only Beacon business I’ve followed after they relocated. I followed my hair dresser Josh Boos to Newburgh from the Green Room (the salon near the mountain across from The Roundhouse). His new digs are in The Atlas Building in Newburgh so that he can manufacture his hair color organizer invention. So cool over there! I’ll be one of the voices encouraging the Newburgh/Beacon Ferry to ramp up its schedule, because it’s going to need to with all of this spread.

Look for Vogel at the Spirit of Beacon Day!

Vogel got a table this year at the Spirit of Beacon Day, so go say hi! This is the first year the Spirit of Beacon folks considered allowing businesses to have vendor tables (traditionally, only nonprofit organizations had tables). Regardless, Vogel’s move is so big, they probably would have been approved for a table anyway.

Congratulations to Anthony and his staff for making the move and making it through uncomfortable times in a business transition. The new location really does come with perks, and I’ll enjoy filling my family’s prescriptions there.

Putting the Community in "Community Bank" at Rhinebeck Bank (Sponsored)

When you live in the big city, you tend to not think about community banks. You may have heard about the financial benefits of banking with credit unions in financial books you’ve read. However, the concept of a “community bank” is one that shows up mostly in movies like “It’s a Wonderful Life” where community banker Jimmy Stewart is saved by his community after years of his independent bank helping people during their own financial challenges. 

What what does "community bank" mean in your real life out here in Beacon and the Hudson Valley region? When banking with a community bank like Rhinebeck Bank?

At Rhinebeck Bank, "Your Success Is Our Success"

“Your success is our success.” I’ve heard this statement spoken by the bankers at Rhinebeck Bank. Their involvement in the community through sponsoring events and elevating awareness puts them in the middle of everyday life. Finances of a community bank are directly connected to the people and the businesses in that same community. If a business who has a loan with Rhinebeck Bank fails, then the bank is impacted as well. Big banks that are too big to fail and have branches all over the world don’t feel that loss in quite the same way.

Listening To Customers

Stacey Schindler is the newest branch manager at Rhinebeck Bank’s Beacon Branch, located on 9D just before the Renegades Stadium. “I have been in banking for 21 years and it was always my dream to become a Branch Manager,” says Stacey. “One of the reasons is due to one of my all-time favorite movies, ‘It’s a Wonderful Life.’ I LOVE that you referenced it in this article.”
(PS: I gave Stacey a sneak peek of this article before going to publication.)

"The connections and relationships that are made with the people in our community and businesses here at Rhinebeck Bank have the same nostalgic feel of that movie. Here at Rhinebeck Bank, we connect with local people and help them realize their dreams through education, active listening, and genuinely caring about helping them find the best financial solutions,” says Stacey.

History Matters

Rhinebeck Bank, one of the only independent banks in the Hudson Valley, opened in 1861 and has made community involvement its top priority ever since. Many of your favorite organizations and businesses do business with Rhinebeck Bank, including The Art Effect (formerly Spark Media Project), and Mill House Brewing Company.

Plugging Into The Community

Dedicated to bringing people together to help business flourish, Rhinebeck Bank has sponsored hundreds of events over the years, working closely with entities including BeaconArts here in Beacon, and municipalities like the City of Poughkeepsie.

“At Rhinebeck Bank, we not only take pride in knowing the value of helping our community, but being a part of that community,” says Rhinebeck Bank’s Senior Vice President of Marketing, Michelle Barone-Lepore. “As a good neighbor, that means making a real difference and striving to create a positive impact on as many lives as possible, beyond just writing a check. Rhinebeck Bank has and will continue to always be a part of the fabric of the communities we not only serve, but embed ourselves in.”

Watch Rhinebeck Bank’s Show on TV!

Rhinebeck Bank also produces an interview series, called “Wake Up with Rhinebeck Bank” that features their business clients. Binge-watch it, because you’ll learn all sorts of things about the origins and special business challenges of big and small local businesses around you.

To learn about how Rhinebeck Bank can help you realize your business dreams, schedule a call with Beacon’s Branch Manager, Stacey, at (845) 831-0300, or visit one of Rhinebeck Bank’s many other qualified business bankers.

Rhinebeck Bank, Member FDIC


Rhinebeck Bank is a proud sponsor of A Little Beacon Blog, and this article was created with them as part of our Sponsor Spotlight program. It is with the support of businesses like theirs that A Little Beacon Blog can bring you coverage of news, local happenings and events. Thank you for supporting businesses who support us! If you would like to become a Sponsor or Community Partner, please click here for more information.

The Personal Touch From the Independent Insurance Brokers at Antalek & Moore (Sponsored)

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When you see the words "insurance agency" or "independent insurance agent," what does that mean to you? Do they sell insurance? Are they the insurance company? No. Independent insurance agents are your personal liaisons, your personal agents of change when it comes to getting what you want and need out of the insurance policy that you buy with the big-name insurance companies, like Progressive, Travelers, and many others. Your local insurance agent knows the distinct differences between each of them. The agents know where a lower price indicates savings, and where it means a dip in quality. They do the homework; you do the living.

We are used to doing things ourselves. But with insurance, we don't have to do it alone. We can have a helping hand. To show you what this means, we asked Susan Antalek Pagones, a Partner at Antalek & Moore Insurance Agency, to give us a few examples of real-life situations where insurance is a must. If all goes well, all you do is pay a policy. But if something happens, you get to know the claims process real quick. Susan enlightens us a bit:

When Insurance Goes From a Quarterly Bill, to a Policy Claim

Susan recalls some of the tougher cases they have handled. “We had an insured family that had a fire and lost the whole house. We met them on the scene on the day after with a large basket filled with everyday essentials we take for granted - shampoo, toothpaste, toothbrushes, socks - all toiletries you could think of, plus some gift cards to go shopping and to get clothes to put on their backs.”

Our customers become our family. In the time of need, you always help out family. 
— Susan Antalek Pagones, Partner, Antalek & Moore

This is the kind of detail and personal touch that continues to draw people to Antalek & Moore. They go above and beyond to stay on top of their insured customers. When Beacon and a good part of the mid-Hudson Valley lost power after the huge storm in May 2018, Antalek & Moore stayed open.

“We stayed open at the office running on jetpacks and laptops. I gave my cell number to any insured customer who wanted it, to call me after-hours with any questions they may have had. We asked adjusters to give our customers advancements on claims. This means that we asked them to cut a check for a certain amount right on the spot so that our customers could start the process of normality." 

Antalek & Moore Advocates on Behalf of Their Customers

Susan explains what their mindset is at Antalek & Moore, what drives them to produce the kind of personal service that they provide: "Our customers become our family. In the time of need, you always help out family."

Sometimes problems can arise during claim-submission process after an accident or unexpected incident. Says Susan: "Sometimes the company may not always agree on certain things that should be paid at the time of a claim. We are the voice of the customer if we feel things should be covered, and we get right in there with the insurance company to advocate on behalf of our customer if there is a problem." 

Lots of people in the Hudson Valley had major tree and house damage after the big storm in May. "We had a customer that had a HUGE tree fall on their house. The customer had previous plans to go away to visit Texas. We made sure that she did go, as her house was not livable. We worked closely with her son to help get the claim settled. There were many hiccups along the way. I was also on a planned trip, but kept in touch constantly by cell with our customer to help. I am not saying it was smooth sailing trying to get this customer back up and running in their home, but whenever they reached out to us, morning or night, weekday or weekend, we always made sure we were there to help out."

Going Local With Insurance Can Make Life Easier

Whether it's buying a home or starting a small business, you need insurance. With so many options available, shopping for insurance can be overwhelming.  A Little Beacon Blog's Managing Editor, Marilyn Perez, used Antalek & Moore when she purchased her condo a year ago and was so happy having established that relationship with a local insurance broker to narrow down the best option for her.


Antalek & Moore is a sponsor of A Little Beacon Blog, and this article was created with them as part of our Sponsor Spotlight program. It is with the support of businesses like theirs that A Little Beacon Blog can bring you coverage of news, local happenings and events. Thank you for supporting businesses who support us! If you would like to become a Sponsor or Community Partner, please click here for more information.

beBhakti Yoga Center Goes True Blue on Back Road

 New paint job for beBhakti Yoga Center.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

New paint job for beBhakti Yoga Center.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

 Matching marketing cards make it easy to find the business!  Photo Credit: beBhakti Yoga Center

Matching marketing cards make it easy to find the business!
Photo Credit: beBhakti Yoga Center

Bright colors on the outside of a building pretty much always signify that you'll find something interesting on the inside. Storefronts in any setting, city or town, must compete heavily for the attention of people walking by. That's especially the case when the business is not located on a beaten path, but on a nearby backroad instead. Such is the case for beBhakti Yoga Center, where founder Lauren Magarelli makes it easy to spot beBhakti-backed events and offerings with her signature blue on postcards, and now the building and fence posts! Look for it at 89 DeWindt Street in Beacon, which runs parallel to Main Street.

"There has been a wonderful community response to our yoga offerings, as well as the vibrant color of the logo," Lauren reflected when we reached out to learn about the inspiration for the blue. "We wanted the building to reflect these two positive energies and encapsulate that feeling of warmth and brightness while also being distinguishable. We hope the new paint will catch people's eyes and stir a curiosity to come in." The color was certainly a welcome hue after such a long, dreary winter.

Colorful Buildings in Beacon

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beBhakti isn't the only Beacon building painted in vibrant colors. Homespun Foods has long been known for its signature red and orange, and the inside does not disappoint, with an artistic menu board on the wall, and more healthful illustrations throughout. Just down the street from Homespun is Ziatun, which added the color olive and a subtle amount of a bold eggplant purple to its palette when it first opened. And you know how we feel about petunias (thanks, Max's on Main!).

Marketing in a small city/town isn't easy, so using these boldly colorful moves can be a winning strategy, while making Beacon a more visually exciting place to live.

Just follow the blue cards, and you'll get to yoga in the studio or down at Long Dock!

Beacon City Council Votes "No" to Airbnb Type Short-Term Rentals - Striking Down Their Own Legislation

 Photo Credit:  An Airbnb in Rome.  We did not want to affiliate anyone's unit with this article. When in Rome...

Photo Credit: An Airbnb in Rome. We did not want to affiliate anyone's unit with this article. When in Rome...

The headline of this article might seem odd, because it implies that Beacon's City Council was not in favor of short-term rentals (aka Airbnb or home-sharing). Council members actually largely did support homeowners renting out their homes to earn extra income. The night of the vote, homeowners who rent out spaces via the Airbnb website had come to the City Council meeting to ask the Council members to vote against the legislation that the Council had been crafting to legalize short-term rentals in Beacon based on the public's input for the past several months.

In a vote of 3-4, with Mayor Randy Casale, Jodi McCredo, and Lee Kyriacou voting "Yes" to legalize short-term rentals, the rest of the Council voted "No." After tallying the votes, the Mayor announced: "The law does not pass. What that means is that all short-term rentals are illegal in the City of Beacon."

The resulting silence was stupefying. It lasted for 24 seconds. The night had been set up for the vote to pass. Homeowners and people who cleaned short-term rentals had shown up to demonstrate their support for short-term rentals - yet asked for a "No" vote. They then got that "No" vote, along with the declaration that short-term rentals were illegal in Beacon because there was essentially no law at all in the first place to protect them.

Editor's Note, 6/1/2018: By default, short-term rentals in Beacon were prohibited, so they were never allowed in the first place (hard concept to grasp, but we explain below), nor had any protections. This legislation would have legalized them, and required them to get a permit.

Two additional pro-short-term rental laws were also being proposed, on the assumption that short-term rentals would be legalized:

  • One proposed law would set the new permit fee;
  • The other would have urged New York State to set its zoning code for short-term rentals, and separate short-term rentals from being classified as Bed and Breakfasts. At the state level, that classification requires that homes have sprinkler systems or egress windows for fire safety.

Technically, there is no law about short-term rentals in Beacon, so there is nothing in place to protect them. According to Beacon City Attorney Nick Ward-Willis, new things like short-term rentals that are not specifically written into Beacon’s Zoning Ordinance are prohibited. Said Nick via email: "The Beacon Zoning Ordinance provides in the Schedule of Use Regulations a list of permitted uses within a zoning district and provides that 'No building or premises shall be used and no building or part of a building shall be erected or altered, which is arranged, intended or designated to be used, in whole or in part, for any uses except the following [see the Schedule of Uses].' Any use not specifically listed shall be deemed to be prohibited.”

Why Now? Why Are Short-Term Rentals Being Contested?

Beacon’s City Council has been debating how to legalize short-term rentals since December 2017, after a Beacon resident and new owner of 51 Orchard Place cut down 13 trees in his yard without a permit, and listed the home on Airbnb. Some of his neighbors were enraged (others supported the tree removal), and brought to the City Council their concerns that homes in neighborhoods were being purchased not as primary residences, but as investment properties (aka "non-owner occupied"), thus altering the neighborhood feel.

Those against his listing of the Orchard Place property on Airbnb presented a petition to ask the City to define regulations about short-term rentals, but not stop the practice entirely. Neighbors were demanding that the City enforce that short-term rentals be illegal in Beacon, but there wasn't an ordinance either way about whether they were allowed or not. Hence the default to the rule that the City Attorney mentioned above.

The legislation that the City Council crafted (after several rounds of drafts) essentially legislated this house out of being a short-term rental because it was not the owner's primary residence. This home has since been unlisted from Airbnb, and put on the market for an asking price of $699,900. The Zillow estimate of the home is $412K.

Wait, What? Short-Term Rentals Are Illegal in Beacon?

According to a letter submitted by Airbnb to the City of Beacon, in 2017 alone, over 9,100 people stayed in Beacon in an Airbnb. Also in 2017, Dutchess County took in over $220,000 in taxes from the 4% Bed Tax paid by Airbnb on behalf of its homeowner hosts, according to Dutchess County Legislator Nick Page, who we reached out to for numbers. Based on those stats, there are far more people coming to stay the night in Beacon than there are hotel rooms to house them in Beacon or in Fishkill. There is a huge supply of people coming to Beacon to stay the night.

Other cities have been operational in the home-sharing market, but in an unregulated or protected way. For instance, in a suburb of Columbus, OH, called Upper Arlington, Airbnb was beginning to thrive, as people would seek to stay there when visiting for Ohio State University games. Last month, Upper Arlington voted to make all short-term rentals illegal, and stated to revisit it in one year.

Beacon had been drafting a law to allow short-term rentals (see our highlights of what was in or out here). Some topics that were addressed included possible limits on how many days a property could be rented, and what spaces were not rentable - attics, or basements, or RVs and tents in backyards. Other cities do have a limit on the number of nights homeowners can rent out, and Beacon started with a 100-day maximum, but during a public meeting, Council Person John Rembert suggested that the council revisit that after hearing public pushback against the maximum. The City Council did throw out that maximum. See the final version of the law here for what was included or not.

The final version of the bill called for one added expense for homeowners: a permit that would be good for two years and could be renewed. And that was the only added expense.

The Issue of the Sprinklers

Once you have the OK to set up shop in Beacon as a short-term rental, you have to also be OK with New York State code, and in compliance with whatever the state says. The state has not yet defined its code requirements for short-term rentals. It drafted a law, but that law has been stalled for a long time. In New York's draft of a brand-new state law for short-term rentals, sprinklers are not mentioned, and the fire-safety requirements for a homeowner would include "conspicuously" posting a list of emergency phone numbers for police, fire and poison control. They would also need to have a working fire extinguisher. However, we asked Beacon's Dutchess County Legislator, Nick Page, if he knew of any movement on that new bill. "Not as far as I know," was his answer.

If there is no code specified, Beacon's Building Inspector, Timothy Dexter, has stated that he would go by the Bed and Breakfast fire code, which requires sprinkler systems in the home or an egress window that can be pushed out.

Homeowners found that threatening and not affordable. However, if New York State completes their law, this could all be a moot point. The Beacon law was requiring that homeowners comply with New York State law - which people need to do anyway with state laws. Beacon's law was simply to say that short-term rentals in a primary residence were OK, and outlined some rules - which did not specify sprinklers.

What Was Beacon's Law For? What Got Voted "No"?

Beacon's law would have legalized short-term rentals in the city of Beacon, and had nothing to do with state law (because there currently is no state law around short-term rentals). The state law could have included the sprinklers depending on interpretation by the Building Inspector, based on guidance he got from the state, according to the City Attorney. During the night of the city council's vote, the City Attorney went on to say that the state has to regulate short-term rentals somewhere, and until there is something official, that somewhere is code relating to Bed and Breakfasts. However, he noted, the regulation could be in a more restrictive area called R1, but the State is seeking the less restrictive of Bed and Breakfast.

Said the City Attorney that night: “We are talking about two distinctions. What the zoning permits, versus what the state permits. You can regulate zoning, but you can’t regulate what the state code provides for.” Two different laws. Beacon's law would only have green-lighted the concept of short-term rentals in the Schedule of Uses, and how that would work.

Here's a screenshot of what a portion of what Beacon's Schedule of Uses mentioned above looks like. See those line items? Behind each item on this list is how the area of interest would work, according to how the City of Beacon regulated it. The short-term rentals regulation would have put Short-Term Rentals onto this list, with certain rules to follow (here's a link to the law's final draft, which was voted down).

zoning chapter 223 screenshot.jpeg

Remember About the Tattoo Parlors? An Ordinance Was Written To Make Tattoo Parlors Illegal in Beacon, Until...

Editor's Note: This section was edited on 6/13/2018 after more information was provided by Keith Zahra in the Comment section).

Alright. Do you see Tattoo Parlors in the list above? Many years ago in 2000, under a totally different City Council, there was a tattoo parlor in town called Zahra's Studio. Tattoo parlors didn't have an ordinance at all. Much like short-term rentals don't have an ordinance at the moment (which by Beacon law, makes them illegal unless they have an ordinance defining how they should run). Some people didn't want tattoo parlors in town anymore. To lock that in and make sure the tattoo parlor couldn't operate legally, an ordinance was written and passed that banned any and all tattoo parlors. Zahra's Studio eventually closed, but not because of the ordinance, according to owner Keith Zahra in the Comment section of this article below!

Said Keith in an outtake of the comment below: "[I was] Open and running for years after the statues of limitations voided any possible future enforcement of the existing tattooing laws. I had a New York State Supreme Court lawsuit filed against City of Beacon for constitutional violations. This case is a lot more complicated than the simplicity of a prohibition and a grandfather clause. City of Beacon violated tattoo artist’s rights like no other government municipality in the country, it was becoming a legal precedence in the industry." Scroll down or click here to read more about his experience with the law. Twelve years later, that rule was reversed, and tattoo parlors were allowed.

 Matthew Montleon, owner of Honorable Ink, was responsible for instigating the reversal of a law that prohibited tattoo parlors in Beacon.  There is no law written to prohibit short-term rentals in Beacon, but City Council voted down a law written to protect them, leaving short-term rental law in the gray and beholden to default law.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Matthew Montleon, owner of Honorable Ink, was responsible for instigating the reversal of a law that prohibited tattoo parlors in Beacon.  There is no law written to prohibit short-term rentals in Beacon, but City Council voted down a law written to protect them, leaving short-term rental law in the gray and beholden to default law.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Matthew Montleon, founder of Honorable Ink, the popular tattoo parlor on Main Street, approached the City Council in 2012 to have this reversed so that he could open his own tattoo parlor, Honorable Ink. According to a Poughkeepsie Journal article he has framed in his establishment, he had the support of Mayor Casale and Council Person George Mansfield, who worked to reverse the rule, saying that tattoos were part of our culture now, especially in our artist-friendly town of Beacon. You may remember the videos on it as Matthew showed up to debate the topic and present his case.

According to Matthew, not only did the City Council reverse the ordinance, but Mayor Casale suggested writing a new ordinance to legalize tattoo parlors, which would have set rules on how tattoo parlors could operate in Beacon, assuming they followed New York State health code and any other code New York State set. This is how legalizing tattoo parlors in Beacon in 2012 played out.

This situation could be likened to the move to legalize short-term rentals in Beacon. Only this time, Council Person George Mansfield voted against legalizing short-term rentals, and the Mayor voted for legalizing short-term rentals. Even though both of them were advocating for homeowners who wanted to rent their homes out in the short-term market.

New York State Law vs Beacon Law - Totally Different Things

Being that there is no clear-cut definition of fire safety code for these properties, Beacon's Building Inspector was leaning toward enforcing sprinkler systems or egress windows as called for in the New York State law concerning Bed and Breakfasts, based on guidance he got from the state, according to the City Attorney, who went on to explain:

 

“Other communities have not addressed this. ... They have turned a blind eye to the building code enforcement issue. Now that the issue is out there in the forefront, the building inspector’s viewpoint is it’s a fire, life, and safety issue, that ultimately is on him. If he turns a blind eye to it, and there is a casualty, ultimately it’s on him. I don’t want to be an alarmist, but there are examples of where there is criminal prosecution against building officials who do not enforce a code provisions when they are in knowing of violations. For him to continue to turn a blind eye, I don’t think is within his job description.”

 

It should be noted, however, that should New York State define its law, for short-term rentals, nothing changes in the Beacon law - only the requirements of the state law. Neither the proposed state law nor the Beacon law mentioned sprinkler systems or egress windows.

During the night of the vote, City Attorney Nick Ward-Willis recalled how he contacted a few people at the State level to get further clarification, but was unable to find any. "At the New York State Department of State (DOS), I spoke with Justin Cartwright, Director of Legislative Affairs for the NYS Department of State (who Airbnb referred us to). Mr. Cartwright referred us to Joseph Ball, Associate Attorney in the Department of State’s Office of General Counsel. We also spoke with Mark Miranda, Regional Contact, Department of State, Division of Standards and Codes." He was unable to get clear answers on fire-safety enforcement for short-term rentals, since no law exists.

Therefore, written into Beacon's law, was a requirement for the building inspector to inspect a prospective short-term rental to see if the short-term rental was compliant with "the International Series of Codes and New York State Code Supplement," and then make a recommendation from there. The city attorney also mentioned that an individual who disagrees with the building inspector’s interpretation of the International and State Code provisions may appeal to the NYS Department of State, Division of Building Standards and Codes, by filling out and submitting an application form available at: https://www.dos.ny.gov/Dcea/pdf/2078-a-f.pdf.

During the Council's last Workshop on short-term rentals on April 30, 2018, the City Attorney did suggest that a way to trigger New York State into addressing the fire code issue was to file a lawsuit against New York State.

Can Sprinklers Be Written Out of the Law?

Moments before the vote took place during the May 21, 2018, City Council Meeting, George Mansfield asked the city attorney if Beacon's law could be written so that sprinklers were not required. The Attorney answered that the law could not, that a state code could only be added to, and not subtracted from, at the city level. "The city does not have the ability to create laws or definitions or regulations for the State building code. You could apply stricter interpretations, but you can’t have it less permissive. The city does not have the ability to influence the State code interpretation."

The proposed local law required that homeowners follow New York State law, which could change at any time, given pressure to the state to complete their law. If New York State law changes, nothing would be amended into Beacon's law. Meaning, if New York follows through with only requiring a fire extinguisher and list of phone numbers, then that is what people would need to do because they need to follow New York State law.

Plus, Did You Know That Major US Cities Like NYC Actually Heavily Regulate Airbnb?

The headlines at major news outlets have been popping up recently. Some communities turned a blind eye to short-term rentals not being on the official list of things allowed and not allowed (like Beacon did). Others turned a blind eye, but after complaints, created legislation to officially shut down the practice (like Upper Arlington, that suburb outside of Columbus, OH). Cities like Miami Beach don't allow it in certain zones.

Surprisingly, New York City has very tight restrictions on short-term rentals, as pointed out by a recent CNBC article, which states:

 

New York City, which Airbnb lists as its top destination for guests, has some of the tightest restrictions on short-term rentals in the country. It is illegal to rent out an entire residence for less than 30 days in New York City. Short-term rentals are permitted only if the homeowner is also staying there throughout the rental period and there are no more than two renters.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a law in 2016 making it illegal to advertise occupancy for short-term rentals in buildings with three or more units (here's the state law). Violators are subject to fines of up to $7,500.

 

Beacon's proposed law imposed no limit on the amount of nights the property could rent per calendar year. Beacon's proposed law did not require the homeowner to be on the property at the time of renting. Beacon's proposed law did not restrict short-term rentals by zone.

Did Beacon have a bird in hand, and not realize it?

Did the council members who voted "no" do it as a bluff or statement against the sprinklers (that weren't even in the local law)? Not realizing how many of them would trigger a majority?

Did that many constituents who supported short-term rentals ask their council member to vote "no," and were maybe confused about how a vote of "no" would pan out, or what it included? That this vote was a separate issue from The Sprinkler Issue?

Beacon Was Being Progressive - So What Happened?

The night of the vote, Council Person George Mansfield stated that his vote of "no" was contingent upon Beacon asking New York State to hurry up and decide already about their fire-safety code. However, a vote of "no" does nothing to protect short-term rentals during the time in which it takes New York State to move in any direction - which could be a long time.

Additionally, if New York State did decide to only require a list of phone numbers and a fire extinguisher as their required fire code in short-term rentals, the vote in Beacon would not be retroactive.

We reached out for comment from the council people and heard back from everyone but Mayor Casale, John Rembert and George Mansfield. They get a lot of emails, so we get it if ours was lost.

Terry Nelson, who voted against the legislation stated: "I personally received an overwhelming amount of email urging me to vote 'no' and these came from short-term rental (STR) owners. Their rationale was that the proposed resolution was a step towards driving them out of business. My reason for voting 'no' is that the resolution did not adequately address many of the subtle nuances of STR ownership. Also, it would create a system in which only those with the financial means would be able to be in the STR business."

When I asked Terry for clarification on the financial implication, Terry referred to the possible New York State mandated sprinkler system or egress window requirement that Bed and Breakfasts need to conform to. But sprinklers are not in the currently stalled New York State law, and they were not in the local Beacon proposed law. Terry referred to other fees in the proposed law, but there only seems to be a permit fee in Beacon's law. So fear of additional fees as a reason to vote no on Beacon's law is unclear, since the Beacon law that was up for a vote did not require sprinklers.

Jodi McCredo, who voted in favor of legalizing short-term rentals, stated: "I did receive requests to vote 'no' as well as requests to vote 'yes.' I believe that voting 'yes' to the law, along with the resolution to request state action and a grace period on the code until the end of the year, was the bast way to help our owner-occupied short-term rental hosts stay in business while shutting down the non-owner-occupied short-term rentals that most of the community seemed to be against. The 'no' vote simply shut down everyone."

Lee Kyriacou, who voted in favor of legalizing short-term rentals, stated: "There looked to be a concerted effort to encourage a 'no' vote. In my view, no change in current law keeps all short-term rentals illegal, which leaves the city free to chase them down. The proposed local law that did not pass 3-4 would have legalized owner-occupied short-term rentals."

Amber Grant, who voted against the legislation to legalize short-term rentals, stated: "Throughout the entire process of crafting the legislation, I heard a lot from constituents. I also spent time with many of them, listening to their concerns and even touring a short-term rental. I thank everyone who made their voices heard."

So What Happens Now?

If you have seen the movie Evita starring Madonna, then you may recall the song, "Another Suitcase In Another Hall," in which Madonna sings the recurring breakup song, with the emotional line: "So what happens now?" wondering where she is going to go. The song ends with a character in the movie answering in whisper: "Don't ask... anymore..."

So... to be continued.

Here's the final proposed law that was voted on, in case you're interested in what was allowed for short-term rentals, in case it comes up again. Jeff Simms, Beacon beat reporter for The Highlands Current, got his article up about it last week, if you want another recap.


Related Links to Airbnb Legislation in Beacon: