Displaying items by tag: saratoga springs

Thursday, 20 May 2021 16:37

Smart Gardening With Starter Plants

With spring’s last projected frost date safely behind us, gardening enthusiasts take out their trowels and prepare garden plots for planting. But if you’re new to gardening, the process may seem overwhelming. We spoke with Susan Beebe, Assistant Director/Agriculture Issue Leader of Cornell Cooperative Extension of Saratoga County, to understand the basics of gardening with starter plants.

To begin, determine where you would like to plant. Perhaps you have space for a garden or raised beds in your yard, or maybe planting in containers seems more feasible.

If planting in the ground, Susan Beebe explains that the first and most crucial step is to determine the pH of your soil. “Soil pH is important because it will help you prepare to plant your garden,” explains Beebe. To collect a soil sample, walk through the area that you would like to plant and collect soil samples from various places. Dig 3” to 8” deep and scoop about ½ cup of soil into a clean container. Soil samples may be brought to Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Master Gardener table at the farmers’ market on the third Wednesday of every month or directly to their office.

If planting in raised beds, Beebe recommends combining potting soil and compost to hold water and prevent moisture from draining out. “Soil is alive and full of microorganisms that plants need to survive,” says Beebe. “Adding green manure, compost, or even a cover crop can keep soil healthy while planting in raised beds.”

If planting in containers, Beebe advises using soilless mixes rather than potting soil. “A benefit to the soilless mixes is that they are much lighter than potting soil and allow you to move your containers around. The counterpart is that these mixes have a tendency to dry out, so depending on the location, you may have to water your containers more,” explains Beebe.

Once your soil is ready, it’s time to buy plants. Several vendors offer various herbs, fruit, and vegetable starter plants at the Saratoga Farmers’ Market. These plants are typically several weeks old and have been nurtured through the most delicate early stages of growth by professional growers in a greenhouse. If you have questions about what to plant, ask the growers: Balet Flowers & Design, Burger’s MarketGarden, Gomez Veggie Ville, Green Jeans Market Farm, Leaning Birch, and Old Tavern Farm.

Now it’s time to plant. Once you’ve popped the first plant out of the container, pull the roots apart with your hands gently; you can look to see how tightly wound the roots are. “You need to pull the roots apart with your hands gently,” Susan Beebe instructs. “You may even use a little knife to break the roots because the goal is to stop their circling motion so that they can spread into the ground,” she adds. When planting, maintain the level it was grown at rather than planting deeper. “The only exception is leggy tomato plants that you can bury deeper,” says Beebe.

Once your starters are planted, water generously and ensure 6+ hours of sunlight a day. Some leafy crops like spinach can thrive with less sun; however, vegetables like carrots, beets, and peppers need 6+ hours a day.

Fruit and vegetables thrive and produce more with light fertilizing at planting. The appropriate fertilizer depends on how you’re growing and what your growing. Beebe recommends side-dressing again with fertilizer 2-3 weeks after planting to ensure healthy, productive plants.

With your new garden well underway, Beebe has some takeaway points. “You need trial and error, so don’t be scared by anything. And each year try something you haven’t tried before. It’s not always going to work, but you will continue to learn.”

The Saratoga Farmers’ Market is open Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Wilton Mall and Wednesdays from 3 to 6 p.m. at High Rock Park.  Find us online at saratogafarmersmarket.org and follow us on Facebook and Instagram. For online pre-ordering and curbside pickup, visit localline.ca/saratoga-farmers-market.

Published in Food
Thursday, 13 May 2021 14:55

Get to Know Greens at the Farmers’ Market

Spring is finally bringing warmer weather and with it an abundance of much-anticipated seasonal produce to the Saratoga Farmers’ Market. Greens, in many forms, including perennials, hearty cold-weather crops, and greenhouse-grown, have been catching our eye, and we invite you to try some fresh new flavors of the season.

Several farms at the Wednesday and Saturday farmers’ markets offer varieties of greens. This includes red romaine, baby spinach, radicchio, green romaine, red leaf, arugula, mustard greens, red chard, and tatsoi. These greens offer distinct fresh flavors and textures, and they are high in nutritional value, too. Depending on the green, some may be cooked, wilted, or enjoyed fresh as a salad. 

Vibrant sunflower and sweet pea shoots are available at Leaning Birch Farm on Saturdays. Pea shoots have the sweet, grassy flavor of snap peas with a refreshing crunch, and sunflower shoots have a nutty taste with a similar crisp bite. According to Nic Fera of Leaning Birch Farm, both are a year-round crop for their farm. “They are great to add a little fresh accent to dishes,” says Fera. 

Capital Greens NY brings varieties of microgreens to the Saturday farmers’ market, including the mixes like their Signature Gourmet, Thai Basil, and Gourmet Fiesta. Microgreens are young vegetable greens packed with nutrients and are easy to incorporate into many dishes or used as a garnish. Try them on sandwiches, in salads, on pizza, or blend them into a smoothie. 

If you’re a fan of fiddleheads, stop by Ramble Creek Farm this month while they’re in season. Fiddleheads are young shoots that grow from the ostrich fern, and with a very narrow harvest season, you can only enjoy these shoots in the early spring from around late April to early June. With a nutty and sweet flavor reminiscent of asparagus, fiddleheads may be steamed, braised, or sauteed, as they contain a trace amount of a toxin and cannot be consumed raw. 

This week, we encourage you to try something new, whether it be a new product or shopping with a new vendor at the Wednesday or Saturday markets.

The Saratoga Farmers’ Market is open Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Wilton Mall and Wednesdays from 3 to 6 p.m. at High Rock Park.  Find us online at saratogafarmersmarket.org and follow us on Facebook and Instagram. For online pre-ordering and curbside pickup, visit localline.ca/saratoga-farmers-market.

FM VeggiePasta

Published in Food

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Triple Crown winner American Pharoah (KY), seven-time Eclipse Award-winning trainer Todd Pletcher, and 13-time champion steeplechase trainer Jack Fisher comprise the National Museum of Racing’s 2021 Hall of Fame class. American Pharoah and Pletcher were elected in the contemporary category in their first year of eligibility, and Fisher was chosen by the Museum’s Steeplechase Review Committee, which meets once every four years. 

The class of 2021 will be enshrined along with the 2020 inductees – trainer Mark Casse, jockey Darrel McHargue, horses Tom Bowling and Wise Dan, and Pillars of the Turf Alice Headley Chandler, J. Keene Daingerfield, Jr., and George D. Widener, Jr. – on Friday, Aug 6., at the Fasig-Tipton sales pavilion in Saratoga Springs at 10:30 a.m. The ceremony will be broadcast live on the Museum website at www.racingmuseum.org. An announcement regarding public attendance at the ceremony will be made at a later date. 

For more information about the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, please visit www.racingmuseum.org.

Published in Sports

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Opera Saratoga has announced the company’s return to the stage for its 60th Anniversary with a season of performances inspired by the iconic novel Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes. 

Working closely with a team of medical professionals and a dedicated COVID Safety Officer, Opera Saratoga will be produced outdoors during June and July in partnership with the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Saratoga Spa State Park, and Pitney Meadows Community Farm to provide three unique performance spaces for audiences to safely enjoy two fully staged productions and a special concert. 

In partnership with SPAC, Opera Saratoga will present MAN OF LA MANCHA, the Tony Award winning musical, featuring Broadway and Opera star Zachary James in the role of Cervantes / Don Quixote; and Opera Saratoga favorite, Kelly Glyptis, returning to Saratoga Springs as Aldonza. Three performances are scheduled on the SPAC Amphitheater Stage at 8 p.m. on July 8, 9, and 10.

In a more classical vein, Opera Saratoga will also present DON QUICHOTTE AT CAMACHO’S WEDDING, a one-act comic serenata by Georg Philipp Telemann with a libretto by Daniel Schiebeler, taken from an episode from Part Two of Cervantes’ celebrated novel, in which the Knight and his squire Sancho Panza encounter some rather strange wedding celebrations as they roam the world in search of adventure. The al fresco production will be staged by Rebecca Miller Kratzer and will be conducted by Michelle Rofrano in and around the Columbia Pavilion in Saratoga Spa State Park, with the backdrop of the forest creating a natural setting for this pastoral adventure.  Twelve performances are scheduled between July 14 and July 18, with performances at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., and 6 p.m.

The two staged productions will be complemented by QUIXOTIC OPERA, a concert of scenes from other operas inspired by Cervantes’ novel, presented in partnership with Pitney Meadows Community Farm. Two performances are scheduled at 7 p.m. on June 24 and 25.

“As we considered how to best return to the stage this summer, I found myself repeatedly drawn to works inspired by Don Quixote,” said Opera Saratoga’s Artistic and General Director Lawrence Edelson, in a statement. “ I think we’ve all needed to channel some of the famous knight-errant’s idealism and extreme optimism – and to dream impossible dreams in the face of unprecedented challenges.  Thanks to the willingness and enthusiasm of our partners at SPAC, Spa State Park, and Pitney Meadows to dream with us, we are able to come back together as a community to safely enjoy some incredible music and theater together this summer.” 

Leading up to the Festival, Opera Saratoga will also offer an 8-week online course: Another Age, Another Place, Another La Mancha:  Don Quixote and the Birth of the Modern World. Taught by Skidmore Professor Grace Burton, this course will explore why the story of an old man’s wanderings through the dusty plains of 17th-century Spain have captured the imagination of philosophers and filmmakers, composers and choreographers, dramatists, and dreamers alike. The course will be offered via Zoom, on eight consecutive Wednesday evenings, from May 12 – June 30. 

OPERA SARATOGA COVID-19 AUDIENCE SAFETY PROTOCOLS 
As required by New York State, all ticket buyers will be required to show either proof of vaccination at least 14 days prior to their attendance, or a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of the performance they are attending. In addition, attendees will be required to complete a health screening questionnaire and pass a mandatory temperature check prior to entry. Audience members will be required to wear masks at all performances, regardless of vaccination status or proof of a negative test. Restrooms will be available with social distancing and enhanced cleaning and sanitation protocols in place in accordance with
recommended guidelines. 

TICKET INFORMATION 
Due to social distancing at all performances, tickets are extremely limited this season, and it is anticipated that performances will sell out in advance. At all venues, tickets will be sold in socially distanced pods of two seats.  At SPAC, pods of one, two, or four seats will also be available on the SPAC lawn for Man of La Mancha. Very limited single tickets will be available under the roof of the amphitheater for Man of La Mancha, but single tickets are not available for Quixotic Opera or Don Quichotte at Camacho’s Wedding due to the seating configurations at these venues. Advance ticket purchases are required for Quixotic Opera and Don Quichotte at Camacho’s Wedding. Advance ticket purchases are strongly advised for Man of La Mancha. If tickets are available on the day of performance at SPAC, ticket purchases will be subject to an additional fee.

Ticket sales open to the public on Monday, May 10. Go to: www.operasaratoga.org. 

Published in Entertainment

A good breakfast sandwich is a New York staple, and people tend to have strong opinions about their favorites. Does it come on a bagel, English muffin, or a biscuit? Do you top it with bacon, sausage, or no meat at all? Saratoga Farmers’ Market customers can put it to the test: the breakfast sandwich is back.

Returning for their 22nd year, with a one-year hiatus in 2020, M&A Farm’s staff dishes up stacks of breakfast menu items for customers to customize into their favorite sandwich. Served on English muffins, M&A uses local, farm-fresh eggs and meats (sausage and ham - combine them to order a “Manwich”) and provides the option to add a hash brown.

At 85, Arnold Grant continues as the farm owner and the main cook at M&A’s stand, but he has help from a big crew made up of three different generations in the family. The Grant family has owned their farm, located in Durkeetown, NY, between Fort Edward and Argyle, for over 200 years.

 “My first memories are of the farm being operated as a dairy farm by my great uncle, and then by my dad, still as a dairy farm,” says Grant. In 1998, he joined the Saratoga Farmers’ Market initially to sell his meats, but the breakfast sandwiches took off at the same time.

Over the years, M&A Farm has been a crowd favorite, as well as a Saturday farmers’ market breakfast tradition. Many customers were noticeably excited for their return last weekend as the summer market season officially began. 

“It hasn’t seemed right without you,” said a customer named Linda just as we walked up to speak to owner Arnold Grant. At the same time, customers who only recently started shopping at the farmers’ market since last year’s move to the Wilton Mall were pleasantly surprised to see a new ready-to-eat option. “We’re so excited to see egg & cheese sandwiches at the market! Now we know to skip breakfast and come straight here,” noted Bethany, another market-goer.

“We’ve been open for a long time,” says Grant resolutely. “I’m hoping to pass the business on to my granddaughter. At 85, I’m getting ready to retire soon, but I’d like it to stay in the family,” he adds. It sounds like Saratoga Farmers’ Market customers will be able to enjoy the farm-fresh sandwiches for some time to come.

The Saratoga Farmers’ Market is open Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Wilton Mall and Wednesdays from 3 to 6 p.m. at High Rock Park.  Find us online at saratogafarmersmarket.org and follow us on Facebook and Instagram. For online pre-ordering and curbside pickup, visit localline.ca/saratoga-farmers-market.

FM Frittata

Published in Food

SARATOGA SPRINGS — The Board of Trustees of Saratoga Independent School (S.I.S.) has named Robert C. Ahrens, Jr. as its new Head of School beginning July 1, 2021.

Robert “Bob” Ahrens has worked in independent schools for more than 25 years. For the past 7 years, Ahrens has served as the Assistant Head of School for Academics & Director of Upper School at Andrews Osborne Academy, a co-educational boarding school in Willoughby, OH. Over his vast career, he has worn many hats and served in numerous roles, beginning as a Middle School math teacher and Dean of Students before moving into administrative leadership positions. In addition, he has served as a member of six school accreditation teams as well as serving as a presenter at the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) National Conference. 

Julie S. Fuller, President of the Board of Trustees, stated, “As Saratoga Independent School approaches its 30th Anniversary this September, we will not only be honoring the school’s past by commemorating our thirty-year history, but we will also be embracing its future. With Mr. Ahrens’ consummate vision, leadership, and extensive experience, we will be looking to our Strategic Plan to continue our unprecedented growth, academic success, and financial sustainability as a fully enrolled PreK through 8th grade, accredited institution.”

Ahrens earned a B.S. from Ohio State University and an M.A. in Educational Leadership from Villanova University. Ahrens was a recipient of the National Association of Independent Schools’ E.E. Ford Fellowship for Aspiring School Heads, a yearlong program of leadership development for emerging independent school leaders.

Current head of school, Lisa Brown, announced her retirement to the Saratoga Independent School community in January.  Under her four years of leadership, the school completed a successful $1.7 million capital campaign, launched a new middle school serving grades six, seven and eight, and completed the construction of a new academic wing.

Virtual and private tours are always available for prospective families. Families interested in scheduling a private or virtual tour may visit www.siskids.org/admissions/campus-tour or contact Colleen Fortune, Admissions Liaison, at 518-583-0841 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Published in Education

WILTON — Youth2 - Youth Helping Youth is teaming up with Toilet Paper Trio (toiletpapertrio.com), to jointly host their 3rd Community Care Pop-UP Event-“Toilet Paper Towers.”

Toilet paper is being collected to be donated to Franklin Community Center, Wellspring, Lifeworks/Soup Kitchen and Saratoga Senior Center. 

The drop-off will take place 10 a.m.-1 p.m. on Saturday, May 22 at the outdoors Farmer’s Market at the Wilton Mall. The drop-off will be completely COVID-safe; you don’t even have to leave your car.

Youth2 is an organization based in Saratoga made up of both youth and adults working together to improve the lives of people around the world. For more information visit www.youthsquared.org

Published in Neighborhood Buzz

SARATOGA SPRINGS — Northshire Bookstore opened the doors to its Saratoga Springs store on an August day in 2013, affecting in innumerable positive ways the downtown landscape of the Spa City. This week, it begins a new chapter.

“It is with excitement, confidence and sadness that I announce that the Northshire Bookstores are passing out of Morrow ownership,” said Northshire co-owner Chris Morrow, announcing in a statement that Clark and Lu French of Manchester, Vermont are the new owners of Northshire Bookstores, which sites locations in Saratoga Springs and Manchester, VT. 

Chris Morrow’s parents, Ed and Barbara Morrow, started the original store in Vermont in September of 1976. 

“When thinking about selling, my main worry was always finding someone, or two, who had the right sensibilities as well as the chops; someone who appreciated The Book, the art of bookselling and our amazing staff and who also had the background, energy, vision and resources to carry the bookstores into future decades,” said Chris Morrow.  In a generation of memories, Morrow explained it is the people he has come across he is most grateful for - from colleagues who have worked at the bookstores, authors who have dropped by, fellow bookstores, publishing houses, and the clientele “who have made all this possible for us. What a beautiful adventure.”

Ed and Barbara Morrow added that this is a personally bittersweet moment for them and expressed confidence they are passing the store’s stewardship into good and competent hands. 

Clark and Lu French, longtime patrons and supporters of Northshire, released this statement: “As this beloved family-owned business approaches its 45th Anniversary, we are thrilled and honored to become its next stewards. Along with our ownership team members Jon and Tom West, we are committed to continuing the legacy and high standards the Morrows have cultivated over their long tenure. 

“The Northshire is more than a bookstore to us. It’s a vibrant gathering and shopping venue where memories are made and discovery is encouraged. Supporting and nurturing this enriching experience is our highest priority. We are sincerely grateful to the Morrow family for trusting us with their life’s work and welcome the opportunity to continue their legacy for many years to come.” 

The French family has been involved in numerous Vermont area ventures, including the Taconic Hotel and the recent restoration of the former Mark Skinner Library building, as well as serving as board members of the Manchester Community Library, Taconic Music and Burr and Burton Academy. 

Published in Business

SARATOGA SPRINGS — The 2021 Saratoga Showcase of Homes Committee is proud to announce a spectacular line-up of 14 locations from our region’s finest builders for the area’s premiere new home tour event. Celebrating 25 years of exceptional homes, this annual tradition will be presented over three beautiful fall weekends on September 18-19, 25-26 and October 2-3.  In honor of this silver milestone anniversary, tickets this year will be $25 and will go on sale in early August. 

The Saratoga Builders Association’s Executive Director Barry Potoker, commented, “We are looking forward with hope, optimism and great anticipation to once again present the Saratoga Showcase of Homes this autumn as we move out from this pandemic. Our goal is to present a “live” tour for the enjoyment of our community while providing the needed help for our two charities who benefit from its proceeds. In planning ahead, our pledge to everyone involved with this event is to take all the necessary steps to follow NYS, NAHB & CDC health and safety guidelines.” 

Thank you to the twelve award winning builders committed to this year’s event; BDC Group, Beechwood Homes, Bella Home Builders, Belmonte Builders, Bonacio Construction, Caruso Homes, Kodiak Construction, McPadden Builders, R & M Builders, Trojanski Builders and Witt Construction. 

The 2021 Showcase Committee has an extensive marketing and promotional campaign in development, which includes official media sponsors including newspapers, magazines, online, television, and social media. Corporate sponsorships are now available to support this annual event. For a detailed sponsorship opportunities packet, please contact Barry Potoker at 518-366-0946 or via email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit www.saratogashowcaseofhomes.com/sponsors to download a packet.

Over the past 24 years, this community event has contributed over $1.3 MILLION dollars to two local charities. Proceeds from the Showcase of Homes benefit Rebuilding Together Saratoga County www.rebuildingtogethersaratoga.org and Habitat for Humanity of Northern Saratoga, Warren and Washington Counties www.glensfallshabitat.org. For more details on the 2021 Saratoga Showcase of Homes event, please visit saratogashowcaseofhomes.com. Follow on Facebook for all the updates!

About Saratoga Builders Association

The Saratoga Builders Association, Inc. (SBA) is a specialized professional trade association representing an industry basic to the well-being and economy of the people of Saratoga County. Its membership includes residential and commercial builders, developers, remodelers, building material suppliers, sub-contractors, financial institutions, architects, engineers, realtors, attorneys and other industry professionals. SBA is committed to the continued growth, prosperity and quality of life in Saratoga County. For more information, please visit www.saratogabuilders.org 

Published in Home & Garden

SARATOGA SPRINGS — The City Council this week unanimously approved a resolution authorizing the sale of city-owned property at the southwest corner of Caroline and Henry streets. 

The property currently serves as a 19-space parking lot and is located next to the Saratoga Springs Public Library. 

Listed as two lots on the county tax map, the city says the lots – which it has owned since the early 1980s - have been recently appraised and determined to have a fair market value of about $500,000 and plans to sell it through a competitive bidding process. 

The city cited construction of the City Center Authority parking lot as having rendered the paved Henry Street lot as no longer useful, and notes efforts “to mitigate the serious financial impacts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Visually prominent on Henry Street is a large mural depicting a six-piece musical ensemble, which clings to a brick wall on Caroline Street. The mural was painted in 1998 by the Youth in Saratoga Mentoring Program of Catholic Charities, with funds administered by the Saratoga Arts Council.    

Published in News
Page 4 of 54

Blotter

  • COURT Andrew V. Cino, 28, of Rexford, pleaded Oct. 4 to felony DWI, in connection with an incident in Saratoga Springs. Sentencing Dec. 6.  Jeremy J. Cramer, 21, of Stockport, was sentenced Oct. 6 to 2 years’ incarceration on the charge of sexual abuse in the first-degree, 1-1/2 years on the charge of patronizing a prostitute in the second-degree, and 1 year on the charge of patronizing a prostitute in the third-degree. All three sentences to run concurrent to each other. The initial charges date to June 2020 in the town of Halfmoon.  Jonathan Saunders, 40, of Mechanicville, pleaded Oct.…

Property Transactions

  • BALLSTON  Laurie Pollard sold property at 20 Silver Springs Dr to Alexander Garcia for $760,000. Eric Wade sold property at 169 Charlton Rd to Joseph Naglieri for $490,000. Scott Crwaford sold property at 1207 Saratoga Rd to Susan Bingham for $235,000. Traditional Home Builders and Development sold property at 22 Mallory Way to Aaron Smith for $573,041. Gerard Largo sold property at 5 Lazur Dr to Anthony Long for $929,000 Jeremy Wood sold property at 77 Church Ave to Gregory Sauer for $300,000. Sharon Way sold property at 292 Lake Rd to Weichert Workforce Mobility for $510,000. Weichert Workforce Mobility…
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