Annual Fish Fry This Saturday From Springfield Baptist Church

The annual Springfield Baptist Church Fish Fry is this Saturday on Mattie Cooper/Church Street, on the corner of Willow Street just behind Main Street. Have your belly ready for some cornmeal fried fish filet and other menu options.

A Little Beacon Blog was created in part to spot events like this and share them with the community - to add to the efforts community organizers make to get the word out. Getting the word out takes a lot of work! A Little Beacon Blog is here to help. 

You know who else helps make this happen? Our sponsor of the popular Event Guide, The Crafty Hammer, a new DIY crafty business in Beacon. They came to us saying: “We want to use ALBB in our promotional planning. All the time. Where else can we help support you?” Amazing. Thank you to all of our sponsors!! 

To submit an event for consideration in our Event Guide, use the Event Submission Form in the menu above. This is great for free events, educational, super cool and unique (tough choice there because everything is super cool! just make sure it’s VERY unique). If you’re running a marketing event for your business, that is free, we may ask you to buy a Event Promotion Package. All advertising helps keep us here on the Internet, so thanks in advance! Maybe one day we’ll be in print!

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The Mobile Farmers Market From Common Green Opens Wednesdays At 2 Community Locations

The Common Green Mobile Farmers Market, open Wednesdays from July - September, 2019.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

The Common Green Mobile Farmers Market, open Wednesdays from July - September, 2019.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

COMMON GREEN MOBILE MARKET TIMES

Beacon’s Community Health Center on Henry Street
Wednesdays 11am-12:30pm

Forrestal Heights, in Parking Lot #2
next to the Senior Friendship Center
Wednesdays, 1pm-2pm

July - September 2019

The green bus of Common Greens’ Mobile Farmers Market has been seen powering up and down Beacon’s streets as it makes its way to its two weekly parking lot destinations on Wednesdays from July - September in order to reach low-income families in the City of Beacon with farm fresh produce directly from Common Grounds’ farm located on 9D.

The two locations are Beacon’s Community Health Center parking lot on Henry Street (Wednesdays 11am-12:30pm), and Forrestal Heights, in Parking Lot #2 next to the Senior Friendship Center (Wednesdays, 1pm-2pm). The Common Greens Mobile Farmers Market accept WIC, FMNP, EBT/SNAP, and Greens 4 Greens. The currency known as Greens 4 Greens is also accepted at the Beacon Farmers Market on Sundays from 10am - 3pm at Veterans Place.

According to Common Ground’s website, their produce is reaching the low-income families it is targeting: “In 2017, a combined total of over 2,000 pounds of produce from Common Ground and the Green Teen gardens was sold at the Common Greens market, and 61% of mobile market sales were made using some form of food benefit, which is an indication that the market is reaching our target population.”

Common Greens Mobile Farmers Market was created in partnership with Green Teen Community Gardening Program of Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess County. The County of Duchess partially funds Cooperative Extension in Duchess County.

House Made English Muffin Breakfast Egg Sandwich at The Beacon Daily Is Legit

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Long ago, there was a flare-up of where was the best breakfast egg sandwich, or the merits of what constituted the best breakfast egg sandwich. We don’t do a “best of” around here because everybody’s best is different. But we can know what is legit (and by “legit” we mean really, really good), and the house-made English muffin breakfast egg sandwich at the new Beacon Daily, on Teller Avenue, passes the test - it hits the spot. 

What Makes This Breakfast Egg Sandwich?

Already this sandwich is off to a great start, with the double wrap of tissue paper to absorb and hold the American cheese and house-smoked bacon grease drippings, wrapped in a final closure of tin foil to keep the heat. So far, however, Mr. V’s has the hottest and most tightly wrapped English muffin in town (how do they get it sooo piping hot?).

Marilyn, A Little Beacon Blog’s Managing Editor, also got one, and we were both happily scraping off the extra cheese drippings from the paper after we finished the sandwich, which is a requirement of an excellent breakfast egg sandwich.

House Made English Muffins

The Double BOGO Sale on English muffins at Key Food.

The Double BOGO Sale on English muffins at Key Food.

The Beacon Daily is as obsessed with English muffins as we are. (You know how we stalk the double BOGO sale in the bread shelves at Key Food for the Thomas English muffin. You read that right - double BOGO means Buy 1 Get 2 Free. The best time for that sale seems to be Mondays, and sometimes Sundays.) The Beacon Daily takes their passion a step further. The Beacon Daily bakes their own English muffins. This is devotion.

A Pancake Egg Sandwich?

Back on the griddle were large buttermilk pancakes, which we really wanted to order, but we were on the clock and needed a real protein breakfast. The Beacon Daily heard our not-so-silent plea for both pancakes and the breakfast sandwich, and toyed with the idea of making a breakfast egg sandwich out of pancakes!! That would be amazing.

Coffee, by Ready Coffee Co., made for a nice second cup to an early morning home brew.

Who Is Behind The Beacon Daily?

The Beacon Daily is owned by two brothers of the Crocco family, Chris and Andrew, and an unofficial, non-blood brother (aka friend), Bill, who is known as “the sausage King of Poughkeepsie.” Bill makes the house-made sausages and smoked meats at The Beacon Daily, as well as Mill House. An actual brother, Danny, who is not an owner, is the chef at Mill House and helped create the menu, space and logistics of The Beacon Daily. And running The Beacon Daily’s social media is yet another family member, Kimberly, who confirmed all of these family tree roots for this article. Clearly there is a lot of food creativity, family and vision coming from this eatery.

There are many meals to try at The Beacon Daily. And there are pies. There are pies you want to try, the varieties of which rotate weekly, usually with two types available at a time. During the writing of this article, there was a Strhubarb (strawberry rhubarb) and apple pie available for slices. Full pies are available upon pre-order.

Beacon Design Trivia

Speaking of the menu, the designer behind the logo is Ken Rabe of Beacon-based design firm Rabe and Co., whose work you’ve seen all over town and on national brands. We always like to give shout-outs to designers, who otherwise can be invisible behind the branding you love.

Zero To Go Transitions Residential Compost Pickup To Community Compost Company (CCC)

Photo Credit: Zero To Go

Photo Credit: Zero To Go

Zero To Go (ZTG), an education-based waste management company focused on composting and recycling, was the first to offer residential pickup of food waste in Beacon in order to keep it from landfills, and eventual methane gas production. After years of operating food composting pickup service in Beacon, Zero To Go has transitioned its Beacon Compost Residential and Farmers Market Collection Program to Community Compost Company (CCC), a New Paltz-based company that is currently servicing several Beacon businesses, according to Zero To Go’s soon-to-be sole owner, Atticus Lanigan. “We are very excited about this,” said Atticus in a letter to Beacon Residential Compost customers, and proceeded to list the reasons:

  • CCC pioneered the Table to Farm compost collection service in the Hudson Valley and is experienced handling residential and commercial collection.

  • CCC is a New York State certified woman-owned business based in the Hudson Valley.

  • CCC is reliable, has great people. and follows the "4P" ethos (People, Planet, Place and Profit).

  • CCC processes the scraps they collect into organic soil amendments on farms in the Hudson Valley, and is already composting the food scraps from ZTG events and collection.

Zero To Go will continue to service events, and “can be hired to handle waste at events in a responsible way,” said Atticus.

Why Does Methane Gas From Food Matter?

If you’ve never experienced methane gas production, try leaving a smoothie in your car in a closed coffee mug for three weeks, and then open it in your kitchen. Spoiler alert: There is so much pressure built up inside of the closed cup from the food rot process, the top will shoot off and hit anything across the room, cracking your plastic water filter container. Some people build potato guns. You could easily build a smoothie gun with yogurt, bananas and strawberries with minimal effort, just some time.

The History Of Zero To Go

Zero To Go was best known for being hired to manage trash/recycling/food waste at events, and branched into servicing businesses in Beacon by picking up their food waste. Zero To Go, founded by Sarah Womer, then launched a successful Kickstarter campaign to raise $20,000 (see this interview with Sarah in this Tin Shingle Training TuneUp webinar on how she did that), to start their residential food pickup program, originally powered by people on bikes.

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Fast-forward years and hours of work later, Sarah took a full time job at Riverkeeper, and Atticus Lanigan came in to manage the company. In addition to raising two children, Atticus has a background in Sociology and Urban Planning, and also works for Dutchess Outreach, an organization fighting food insecurity in Dutchess County that offers a hot meals program (formerly known as a “soup kitchen”).

Says Sarah when A Little Beacon Blog reached out for comment: “Atticus and I put in huge numbers of hours and sacrificed a lot of our own time to run and grow this company (like any start-up owners do)! It's been a real labor of love. It feels good to see the compost program take flight under new ownership - if we have a strong, visible, affordable compost program in town, it's something to be very proud of!”

Today, Atticus continues her work for Dutchess Outreach, and officially moves into the sole owner role of Zero To Go, which will specialize in event waste management. Sarah works in Harlem at a sustainability consulting firm. Both are always moving and shaking in the world of waste management and their commitment to educating about it. They will be contributing in other areas, so keep your eyes peeled.

Plastic Bags Out Of Food Compositing

Plastics bags are leaving the Hudson Valley (see press release about Governor Cuomo banning single-use plastic bags from New York State), including the food compositing arena. Said Atticus to prep customers about plastic bags: “CCC will not be accepting compostable plastics in the buckets, which includes compostable bags. This will be the biggest change as many of you are using compostable plastic bags in the process of getting your food scraps out to your buckets.”

Atticus began preparing Zero To Go customers for a plastic bag transition: “Ultimately, the use of bio-plastics is not ideal. As lawmakers work to deal with the overwhelming issue of garbage, many are seeking the abandonment of all single-use plastics and plastics in general. By drawing ourselves away from the use of it, we will be ahead of the curve.”

SIDE NOTE: Food Rot Container Tip

Fortunately, my compost food collection container is in a very pretty white jar from Pottery Barn, and my food collection system does not involve a plastic bag. The container is a porcelain flour jar that I repurposed to be a food compost container with a rubber-sealed lid. You could also find such a jar at Utensil or maybe even Raven Rose in Beacon. I just walk this pretty pot of rot to my compost bucket outside on my back porch, and that’s it. Happy to not have to wean myself off of a plastic bag! Am currently working on weaning myself off of Ziploc baggies.

To sign up for residential food pickup from Community Compost Company, click here. It’s about $32/month for weekly pickup, and lower rates are available for fewer pickups.

Common Ground Farm's Opening of the Fields Event

Common Ground Farm invites visitors for a contemplative walk through the early spring fields on Saturday, April 13, at 1 pm. The walk will be guided by Farm Director, Sarah Simon, with reflection and commentary shared from the faith traditions of food access partners and community leaders, including: Rabbi Brent Chaim Spodek of Beacon Hebrew Alliance, Lt. Leilani Rodríguez-Alarcón of Salvation Army, Pastor Ben Larson-Wolbrink of First Presbyterian Church, Pastor Bill Dandreano of Salem Tabernacle, and Sarah Capua.

Everyone Welcome To Celebrate The Growing Season

The Opening of the Fields walk is an opportunity to appreciate the potential abundance of the fields as well as to reflect upon the changes and uncertainty inherent in nature. Farming can be isolating work, and the farmers look forward to sharing the springtime activities on a Hudson Valley vegetable farm. Visitors can park by the red barns and meet the group by the picnic tables. Hot tea and snacks will be provided, and guests are welcome to stay and picnic afterwards if the weather is fine. The event is free and open to all. Common Ground Farm welcomes everyone to visit the farm and help celebrate the start of the growing season.

Farm Director Sarah Simon states, “Both hope and uncertainty shape the beginning of the growing season on the farm. The traces of last year's labor have faded, winter has claimed what was once green and lush, and the farm is just beginning to wake up again as the soil starts to warm and the sun begins to shine.”

About Common Ground Farm

Common Ground Farm is a community farm dedicated to food justice, and donates produce to six different local food pantries and soup kitchens each week during their growing season. This event is an opportunity for the farm’s valued community partners to visit the place where the produce is grown, and to see the fields that will feed their communities from May until November. Many of the soup kitchens and food pantries are organized by religious organizations, and for the event, the farm has invited the leaders of these churches, synagogues, and mosques to share blessings and teachings about nature, food and land from their traditions. There will also be nondenominational teachings and blessings shared by community members.

Common Ground Farm donates weekly to the following food pantries:

  • Beacon Community Kitchen

  • Fishkill Food Pantry

  • First Presbyterian Church in Wappingers Falls

  • New Vision Church of Deliverance

  • St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Beacon

  • Occasionally to: Salvation Army in Beacon, Dutchess Outreach in Poughkeepsie

The Little Marshmallow Cookie Sandwich Spot-Hitter At Hudson Valley Marshmallow Co.

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During the lowest temperatures of the polar vortex, and during the darkest nights of evening snow-shoveling in preparation for the morning, visions of blow-torched marshmallow cookie sandwiches have kept the home fires warm until the next time we can experience the real deal - firing up the little delight to hit the sweet spot of a chocolate craving!

The marshmallow cubes at Hudson Valley Marshmallow Co. These are made here in Beacon.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

The marshmallow cubes at Hudson Valley Marshmallow Co. These are made here in Beacon.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

The prep for the s’more, before it gets torched in the video below.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

The prep for the s’more, before it gets torched in the video below.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

And I don’t even normally like marshmallows (except for these, melted, it seems). Which is why it has taken me until now to finally visit Hudson Valley Marshmallow Company and actually experience one of their toasted marshmallow s’more bite sandwiches between two cookie crackers (your choice of chocolate chip, chocolate chocolate or cinnamon), smushed into your choice of a single square of dark or milk chocolate (made by Alps Chocolate, right down the street!), and blow-torched to perfection by the marshmallow-ista. (What would you call the barista of a marshmallow bar, anyway? We’ll call her a marshmallowista.) Check out this video of her torching the marshmallow, and the special smush it gets once melted.

”My torso is famous,” said the marshmallowista. That’s how many customer videos she’s been in while custom-torching marshmallow s’mores for people. The Violent Femmes played on the speakers in the background while we customers grappled with the tough choices among marshmallow combos, selecting first the flavor of the marshmallow, which is made here in Beacon in the commissary kitchen of More Good. (Yes, there is an entire outfit behind the tea room further up Main Street in the center of town, where brands like this are born and fly the coop into kitchens of their own someday.)

The s’more cookie crackers at Hudson Valley Marshmallow Co. These are baked right here in Beacon.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

The s’more cookie crackers at Hudson Valley Marshmallow Co. These are baked right here in Beacon.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

If you like gingerbread and pumpkin spice, you will face a tough choice between the two. For me, the choice is clear: salted caramel marshmallow between two chocolate chocolate cookie crackers (you can always mix and match), and a square of milk chocolate. Fire it up!

There is a growing number of marshmallow roasting gifts in the store. You could of course buy bags of the small-batch marshmallows (see their clever bags of black coal at Christmas), and a personal marshmallow roaster, should you want to start roasting inside your kitchen.

Valentine’s Day is just an excuse to buy these things, as eating these little s’mores any day of the year would give the same satisfaction as eating a giant cookie or brownie. 

The choice is yours. A warning: BJ’s legendary three-layer cakes are right next door. Find this strip of storefront heaven on the west end of town, toward the DMV. Also be warned: Hudson Valley Marshmallow is only open Thursdays to Sundays. But they are open until 8 pm. So all you commuters and neighboring shop owners who close and come home at 6 pm have no excuse for not going!

The Nostalgia electric s’mores maker  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

The Nostalgia electric s’mores maker
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Restaurants That Are Open Christmas Eve and Day in Beacon - 2018 Edition

Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

One of the things that make the holidays so wonderful is the FOOD! The special meals that bring us all together. Some families have their big meal on Christmas Eve while others have it on Christmas Day. If there is a day you plan on dining out, our trusty Restaurant Guide is always here at your service. In this case, we saved you some time in finding out who on Main Street will be open and closed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Who’s Open Christmas Eve/Day?

BJ’s Soul Food Restaurant, at 231 Main Street, will be open on Christmas Eve, 7:30 am to 9 pm, and Christmas Day, 7:30 am to 6 pm.

Isamu Sushi, at 240 Main Street, will be open both days with their regular hours.

The Roundhouse, at 2 East Main Street, will be open in the lounge on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, 3 to 10 pm.

For Those In Need:
The Springfield Baptist Church is serving free Christmas dinners on Christmas Day from noon to 3 pm. They will deliver three or more dinners. For delivery, call (845) 464-2480. The church is located at 8 Mattie Cooper Square in Beacon.
- First reported by the Beacon Free Press

Who’s Open Christmas Eve Only?

Barb’s Butchery, 11 am to 6 pm (menu for grilled food is available)
Bank Square, until 6 pm
Tito Santana’s, until 4 pm
The Pandorica, until 5 pm
Homespun Foods, until 3 pm
Ziatun, regular hours (until 8 pm)
Max’s on Main, until 6 pm
Enoteca Ama, until 10 pm (final seating 9:30 pm)
Cafe Amacord, until 10 pm (final seating 9:30 pm)
Glazed Over Donuts, 8:30 am to 12:30 pm
Yankee Clipper Diner, until 3 pm
Ella’s Bellas, until 3 pm
Brother’s Trattoria, until 10 pm
Beacon Falls Cafe, until 3 pm
Sukhothai, until 9:30 pm
Melzingah Tap Room, until 7 (final seating 7-7:30 pm)

Who’s Closed Christmas Eve/Day?

Chill Wine Bar
Kitchen Sink
Meyers Olde Dutch
Baja 328
Quinn’s
Draught Industries

Are You On This List?

This page right here is one of our most popular pages in Google around Christmas time. Everyone starts Googling who is open on Christmas Eve and Day!

If you run a restaurant and it’s in Beacon and not in this lineup, please email us at editorial@alittlebeaconblog.com! We literally called everyone, so you might not have been able to answer the phone when we called. Don’t be shy! Let us know.

If you are a business not in Beacon, but want to be included in this list, consider an Article Sponsorship! We’ll get your logo and business name listed here.

If you are in this list, and you just want to say THANKS, you can also do so with an Article Sponsorship with your logo listed!

Saturday: For Goodness Bake Fundraisers String Up Their Aprons Once More To Raise Money For A Family

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The For Goodness Bake event is a Beacon staple, and has become an annual event throughout the years. Started by Kristen Pratt and Tara Tornello, the community-sourced bake sale raises money for one particular cause that has demonstrated an urgent need in the community (see below for info on how you can bake). This year, the highly anticipated bake sale is on Saturday, November 10, from 10 am to 3 pm at 145 Main St. in Beacon (aka Beacon Healing Massage and Create Space), near Bank Square Coffeehouse.

Say Kristen and Tara as to what inspired them to put on their aprons: “We wanted to raise funds to help keep a beloved Beacon family together. For 4 years, this local family (who must remain anonymous) has helped to nurture a little boy who needed a home. Now his future and their family are in jeopardy as they face a difficult fight for his rights within a legal system that consistently puts political interests above the best outcomes for children.”

How This Bake Sale Works

Bakers from around the Hudson Valley will join the fundraising efforts by donating a variety of sweet and savory baked goods. Pay-what-you-can beverages and coffee will be provided by Drink More Good and Trax Espresso Bar & Coffee Roasters.

Now in its sixth year, For Goodness Bake has previously raised nearly $15,000 for local causes, including the Beacon After School Program Tuition Assistance Fund, the Beacon Community Kitchen, Green Teen Beacon, and the Kids R Kids Feeding Program.

To learn more about the event or to get involved, call (845) 518-4194 or email forgoodnessbakebeacon@gmail.com.

To donate baked goods, sign up via this link: http://signup.com/go/jsTeNdH

INSIDER TIP! They are accepting baked goods up until the last minute. So if you have mad baking skills, use ‘em! I have done it (I am not a baker) and it was a wonderful initiative to be a part of.

Simply drop off to to Kristen and Tara tonight (Friday) at 145 Main from 6 to 8 pm, or Saturday from 7 to 8 am.

If you are reading this article after the bake sale has ended, but want to offer to bake for another one, email forgoodnessbakebeacon@gmail.com and ask to be added to their notification list.

Photo Credit: For Goodness Bake

Photo Credit: For Goodness Bake

Photo Credit: For Goodness Bake

Photo Credit: For Goodness Bake

Photo Credit and Baker: Raquel Verdesi

Photo Credit and Baker: Raquel Verdesi

Photo Credit and Baker: Alena Morgan Brown

Photo Credit and Baker: Alena Morgan Brown

Photo Credit: For Goodness Bake

Photo Credit: For Goodness Bake

Yum Yum Homespun

Afternoon snacky snack. A slice of Homespun’s famous carrot cake and a cup of coffee.

Alright, fine - the honest answer - this was dinner.

Doing a Saturday work session to catch up on publishing some articles that are getting way too backlogged! We’re in the middle of a series on the Shopping Guide Shuffle that highlights businesses who have moved down the street, or moved in for the first time, and the buildings that house them. Then we’re doing a few features on the Real Estate Guide, including a spotlight on Newburgh.

Hence, the need for coffee and sugar. Eyes are blurry at this point.  :)

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Those Cinnamon Buns... That Crumb Cake...

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The tiny counter at All You Knead Bakery is always filled with curious, good-smelling things that come fresh from the oven in the larger space in the back of the shop. This Sunday morning at 8:30am, fresh crumb cake sat warmly next to these gooey cinnamon buns. Not included in this picture were the salty pretzel bagels.

Tempting as this all was, I was on a mission for their chocolate croissant - which I found and devoured in four bites because it is so soft and generously filled with dark chocolate. I couldn’t leave without a blueberry scone, too, just in case anyone around me got hungry a few hours later after our Sunday errands. Turns out, I’m the lucky one who got hungry.

All You Knead Bakery is in the middle section of Main Street, just before Rite Aid and past Key Food if you’re walking from the train. It’s across the street a bit from the Howland Public Library. It’s located behind a simple wooden screen door. If you see their sidewalk sign out, you know they are open.

On Sundays they are also at the Beacon Farmers Market, just down Main Street. There, you’ll find a similar range of baked goods, but you may also find chicken pot pies, which I’m learning have quite a following. They also sell retail in stores like Adams Fairacre Farms, and you may find them in one of those Taste NY stores off the Taconic.

Mission next Sunday? Chicken pot pie. 

Updates Made to Brunch in Beacon Guide - Chocolate Pancakes Anyone?

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There's been a lot of movement on Main Street since we first started our Brunch and Breakfast Guide. We've captured the available French Toast options here in this latest update of this Brunch in Beacon, NY Guide. The Guide also includes spots you can find breakfast sandwiches, and cocktails to kick off your day on a festive note.

Cupcake Festival in Beacon, NY 2018 - Reached the Cupcake Mecca

Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Streets were packed on Beacon's east end of town for the Cupcake Festival 2018.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin   

Streets were packed on Beacon's east end of town for the Cupcake Festival 2018.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin
 

Did you reach the mecca? The Cupcake Festival? The east end of town was thick with cupcake celebrators, but in our journey to walk all of Main Street from the train to the mountain, we got to duck into a few favorite local businesses...

Luxe Optique (where we helped a friend buy some glasses!), American Gypsy Vintage while waiting for a to-go chicken wrap from Ziatun to eat on the way, NFP Studio (got a personal demonstration of how to wear their architecture-inspired sweaters!), Utensil Kitchenware (bought some nesting containers at last!), Jeffrey Terreson Fine Art (always love seeing that guy and he had a stunning, ginormous print on the floor ready for shipping out the door). And at last, we decorated this cupcake from Tops, and indulged in a generous chocolate cupcake with a lot of vanilla frosting from The Chocolate Studio. Alas, we ate it before the camera could capture a picture.

We Shopped at American Gypsy Vintage on the way down to the Cupcake Festival, while waiting for a takeout chicken wrap from Ziatun.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin   

We Shopped at American Gypsy Vintage on the way down to the Cupcake Festival, while waiting for a takeout chicken wrap from Ziatun.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin
 

How many cupcakes should you bring if you're a cupcake vendor? A lot. This is just a fraction - 1/279th - of the cupcakes that were for sale.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin   

How many cupcakes should you bring if you're a cupcake vendor? A lot. This is just a fraction - 1/279th - of the cupcakes that were for sale.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin
 

Finally Stopped into NFP Studio to experience the sweaters!  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin   

Finally Stopped into NFP Studio to experience the sweaters!
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin
 

During Last year's Cupcake Festival, no one ventured down to 1 East Main, which is literally Just down a grassy hill from the Happenin' Event. This year, Since  Trax Coffee Roasters Has moved in , Cupcake Aficionados Were Happy to venture down the hill.  Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

During Last year's Cupcake Festival, no one ventured down to 1 East Main, which is literally Just down a grassy hill from the Happenin' Event. This year, Since Trax Coffee Roasters Has moved in, Cupcake Aficionados Were Happy to venture down the hill.
Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Harry's Hot Sandwiches Closes Location in Beacon Theater - The Response Has Been Intense

Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

To start, this article announcing the closure of Harry's Hot Sandwiches is titled "Harry's Hot Sandwiches Closes Location in Beacon Theater," as opposed to just saying "closes," and leaving it at that. This article title leaves open the possibility/prediction: This isn't the end of Harry's Hot Sandwiches. It just may be the end of Harry's Hot Sandwiches in this location. Because here's the thing: Running a small business isn't business as usual. There is no such thing as business as usual for small business owners. There's always a story behind it.

When a business in Beacon announces that it is closing, usually something different happens; best-case scenario is the owner is presented with a possible solution, and more possibilities reveal themselves for the business to stay open. Like when the boutique Lauren and Riley announced that they were closing, only to re-announce that they changed their minds and would stay open with a move to the other end of town. (PS: Lauren and Riley are having a big Moving Sale, so run - don't walk - to help them clear out inventory in advance of their big move!)

So let's back it up for a moment to explore Harry's Hot Sandwiches, now that he has announced on Instagram that he is closing. He cited a rent increase as the reason for closing, which sparked a social media outrage against landlords and rent in Beacon in general.

Who is Harry?

Harrison Manning opened Harry's Hot Sandwiches after working in many eateries in Beacon. Many knew him from his days working the coffee counter at Bank Square. Then they delighted to see him serving up delicious dishes from The Hop. (The Hop has since closed due to its own inner workings.) One of Harrison's fellow workers from The Hop, John-Anthony Gargiulo, opened Hudson Valley Brewery down behind 1 East Main, and some familiar faces can be seen behind the bar there.

When Harrison opened Harry's Hot Sandwiches in The Beacon Theater in 2015, it was during the period when his dad, Patrick Manning, a partner in 4th Wall Theatrical Productions, had taken over the theater in 2011 in order to revive it as a working theater after it had been closed for 50 years. Before Harrison opened his sandwich shop, the space had been home to a coffee shop, and then to an ice cream parlor from the same people who run the Beacon Creamery on the west end of town (across from Bank Square). Both the ice cream parlor and coffee shop were short-lived and closed quickly.

The planned theater renovation did not come to be, and by 2015, the property was purchased by a construction company run by the McAlpine family, who had done the construction on that theater after renovating and running The Roundhouse. According to an article by Brian PJ Cronin in the Highlands Current, the McAlpines donated their work to the restoration: "For the next few years, McAlpine Construction donated time, materials and work in order to help restore the theater’s facade and lobby, and build out two commercial spaces on either side of the lobby."

Those commercial spaces became Harry's Hot Sandwiches and the alteration shop, By A Thin Thread. Brendan McAlpine became the new owner in 2015, and inherited Harry's Hot Sandwiches as a tenant. Brendan continued the major renovation of the Beacon Theater, announcing the availability of residential apartments and some office space, as well as a movie theater (click here for an inside look at the plans for that movie theater).

The Announcement - The Rent

Rent is a delicate subject. It can make or break a business from staying in a location. It can be the basis for the pricing a business owner gives their customers. A rent increase can be the catalyst for the business owner to close, or to move down to a neighboring storefront. Or, the business can pivot to accommodate the rent increase and retain customers. Sometimes, the landlord can be very present, and sometimes the landlord can live out of town and no one can reach them should a storefront be flooded from an overflowing bathtub in the apartment upstairs. (Click on those links to read - yes, real - examples.)

In Harry's case, his landlord is quite present in Beacon. We reached out to Brendan for comment in response to the rent increase mentioned in Harry's closure announcement. Here is what he said:

 

"Harry's rent has been held so low over the years, that even doubling it keeps it several hundred dollars a month below market. We always worked together on good terms during his lease, and I was disappointed he was leaving. I inherited him as a tenant, but worked with Harry to keep his business moving forward the last couple of years.

"Without going into detail, necessary upgrades needed to be made to his space for life safety and health code reasons. While I told him that I would need to start getting closer to market rent and need the upgrades made, I told him we would work toward it over 6 months to a year to allow him to ease into it. With the movie theater opening soon in this building, he should have no shortage of business. We offered to rent him just the kitchen as a vendor for the theater as another possibility, which would make his rent even lower than he currently pays, but he was not interested. I will miss Harry and genuinely wish him well."

 

Surely the Sammies Will Still Be Available Some How, Some Way

When Harry's Hot Sandwiches opened, it was an instant hit, and currently has nearly five-star ratings everywhere. The eatery was a media darling, loved by The Valley Table, Visit Vortex, and adored by professional photographers like Meredith Heuer. Our prediction is that we haven't tasted the last sandwich from Harrison Manning. He's too creative to sit still. Maybe you'll see him in a new location in Beacon. Maybe you'll see him in Newburgh. We just don't know yet... Hopefully he will still have the bike delivery option!

Where to Eat or Order Specialty Thanksgiving Food in Beacon for 2017

A reader's question prompted us to call every restaurant on speed-dial to see which spots would be open - if any. Result? It's slim pickins', folks! You had best be cooking in or ordering early from Beacon's amazing specialty stores and picking up by Wednesday. The full list has been updated in A Little Beacon Blog's Restaurant Guide, and the results have been listed here as well.

Keep in mind, most everyone is open before and after Thanksgiving Day - so it will still be a bustling week, except for Thursday which will be quiet! See A Little Beacon Blog's Shopping Guide and Pop-Up Shop Guide for destinations to shop near where you eat!


OPEN THANKSGIVING DAY:

  • Stock Up, for morning sandwiches and six-packs
  • BJ's Soul Food
  • Beacon Bagel, until 11 am
  • The Lounge at The Roundhouse, with a limited menu (main dining room is closed)

WHERE TO ORDER SPECIAL THANKSGIVING STUFF FOR HOME:
All phone numbers are listed in The Restaurant Guide.
Hurry, Special Ordering has begun and most places have fast-approaching deadlines!

  • Beacon Bread Company
  • Artisan Wine Shop (for wine, obv.)
  • Homespun Foods
  • All You Knead
  • Beacon Natural Market
  • Beacon Pantry
  • Kennedy's Fried Chicken (yes, they like to cook large orders)
  • Stock Up
  • Ella's Bellas
  • Barb's Butchery

Cafe Amarcord Set To Open Brick Oven Pizza Restaurant in Beacon - Across the Street!

Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

Photo Credit: Katie Hellmuth Martin

As I was walking down the street one day, I got to chatting with someone about #allthingsbeacon, and they asked me if I knew about the new Italian restaurant going into the former karate school space next to Mr. V's Deli. I had not yet heard about this development, but was intrigued.

"Can you believe it?" they asked, "an Italian restaurant right across the street from Amarcord? The nerve." If you didn't know already, know now: Cafe Amarcord is one of Beacon's favorite restaurants, lauded for its fresh, Mediterranean menu. (Check out this review from Hudson Valley Magazine, who really liked the pan-roasted mussels in a white wine garlic sauce, bucatini Amatriciana, pappardelle with black pepper ricotta and dried tomatoes, as well as "a skewer of rosemary-infused lamb served on creamy polenta with a sauce of lemon.") Beaconites are very protective of their local businesses, so they care about what opens where, and whether a new Italian food business would be opening across the street from a longtime business. Amarcord has been open in Beacon for eleven years, so it has quite a following.

Picture of the building housing Mr. V's Deli before exterior renovations began for Amarcord's future brick oven pizza place.  Photo Credit: Google Maps

Picture of the building housing Mr. V's Deli before exterior renovations began for Amarcord's future brick oven pizza place.
Photo Credit: Google Maps

Paper went up on the windows of the short building across the street from Amarcord, and construction began, building out a kitchen and transforming the tired space. When the decorative faux windows and new shingles went up on the roof, Rifo Murtovic, owner of Cafe Amarcord, stepped out of his usual perch in the doorway of his restaurant to stand on the sidewalk of the other side of the street, surveying the construction.

#sameteam! Pizza or Fine Italian

Our investigation began immediately, seeking confirmation from Rifo that he himself was the one opening the rumored pizza restaurant. "It will be brick oven pizza," he described. "More casual than Amarcord." The heat source of the oven? Wood. As for making changes to the facade of a building he does not own: "I just want it to look nice," he marveled, while looking at the building seeing in his mind's eye a vision of post-renovation perfection. 

The owner of Royal Crepes was also outside on the sidewalk during the interview for this article, and enthusiastically interjected more detail: "The pizzas won't be like most Mediterranean around here. They will each be personal pies, and the meat for the toppings will be cut right in front of you. It's part of the experience." Personal, flat pizza pies of the freshest ingredients are the norm in Italy, and they are about to become an option in Beacon as well. Wine and beer will also be available. As of now, there are no plans for delivery.

Flavors from Tuscany? Yes, please. Congratulations to Rifo on the new addition.

This article is the first in our series covering businesses in Beacon who have opened second or more locations in Beacon. We are currently brainstorming names for this series. Got any? Submit ideas here in the Comments!