- BREEZIE MAPLES FARM: Maple syrup, maple syrup products.
- CORDWOOD ACRES: Farm fresh eggs, fresh whole chicken, rhubarb, fresh cut herbs, potted tomato plants, and hand cut goat milk soap.
- ENVIRO-ENERGY: Natural grass pellets for fuel, soil conditioner & mulch; kiln dried pine pellets for animal bedding and cat litter. Barley pellets to control algae growth in ponds.
- FISH HOLLOW FARM: Felted wool jewelry, purses, hand-dyed knitting wool, and crafts from farm-raised flock; felted washcloth pouches of goats’ milk soap.
- FOKISH: Organic, flat, round and long breads–sourdough, multi-grain. Croissants and sweet rolls.
- FRIENDS OF THE FRANKLIN FREE LIBRARY: Bake sale.
- LILAC HILL FARM: Socks, knitting worsted yarn from farm-raised flock; honey, honey cake.
- MARKET GENERAL STORE: Stony Creek Farm pork.
- NATURALLY SPEAKING: Organic asparagus, lettuce, green onions, arugula. Potted lilies.
- NECTAR HILL FARM: Grass-fed on organic pastures Highland beef, lamb and mutton. Raw honey; ramps. Samples of a new line of sheepskin fashion and home accessories.
- SHERMAN HILL FARMSTEAD: Artisanal goat and cow cheeses; gluten-free baked goods, freshly made jams; goats’ milk soap made with our goats’ milk.
- SUE MULLEN: Tomato plants, both hybrid and heirloom. Vegetable plants including cucumber, summer and winter squash, lettuce and eggplant. A selection of herbs and annual flowers.
- TWO-TON FARM: Shiitake mushrooms, spinach, smoked pimenton, cut tulips, hand-forged implements and hooks, framed photographs.
- WALLY WOODSHOP: Hand-crafted cutting boards using local hardwoods.
- WHEAT HILL FARM: Eggs; rabbit, herbs, lettuce, fresh grilled gyros, lemonade, ice tea.
Author: Franklin Local
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The Franklin Farmers’ Market at Chapel Hall starts its 7th season this Sunday, May 26th.
You can find us at 25 Institute Street, Franklin NY, just off Route 357 in Delaware County – home of the Franklin Stage Company.
This year’s poster is by famed realist artist Jack Beal, and will be available for sale at the market.
By Charlie Bremer
being swallowed whole
in the dark of night around her beautiful circular vessels
gives flight to all of us
Art is about transformation. We witness alchemy as the body and muscle of another person transmutes raw physical materials – clay, pigment, wood, metal, stirred with animated frequencies of light, sound, text, emotion, saturated with the elements: heat, air, water – and ultimately reshapes them with such grace and power as to transpose our sense of space and time. Through art we rise up, we take notice, we fall in love, we remember, we are moved to act, we join together, and we again recognize what and that we understand. We mark our place.
In the summer of 1961 at the edge of a roadside parking lot in western Wyoming, I encountered the most beautiful valley I had ever seen. I was eight years old, almost nine, and our family had traveled west camping for three long months over the summer. We were south of Yellowstone and just east of the Grand Teton Mountain Range with Jackson Hole Lake before us. On my lap was a blank sketch pad, in my hand a drawing pencil, and my mother had placed a box of American Crayon Company pastels at close reach. What followed, for the first time in my conscious life, I can only describe as being swallowed whole by the landscape before me. More than half a century later I can precisely recall the weightlessness of my body as I perceived myself floating foreword into an extra-dimensional space, the enormous valley floor between where I sat and the magnificent distant range of mountains beyond. The more I concentrated on visual artistic perceptions, the further and faster I levitated into the vast immense air. Shapes of trees, textures on the low hills, hues of green and umber in earthen vegetation grew completely sharp with light as I hovered optically over the earth. This out-of-body experience seemed like a trick the mountains themselves had conjured to combine with my youth and my intense concentration of artistic observation. Whatever it was, I loved it. The act of drawing had guided me to look closely, and the power of that moment through art was for me a luminous birth. Had I not been looking with the specific determination to draw and sketch, I believe I would never have experienced the Tetons Range so deeply that, to this day, I can see that valley clearly, in every detail.
From Jackson Hole, our family continued south and west that summer, crossing into Utah, traversing the plains of the Great Salt Lake, visiting ancient Anasazi cliff houses and passing through Four Corners, where we entered Navajo territory in present day New Mexico. One morning we broke camp outside of Santa Fe and drove to Pueblo San Ildefonso, arriving close to noon at the home of potter Maria Martinez. She was somewhere in her mid-seventies and reminded me of an ancient juniper, growing above tree line on a western plateau. I am fairly certain I never spoke a word to anyone that day. I just watched as this remarkable woman demonstrated her clay work, served us some lunch and tended a firing of pots which appeared as a big smoldering pile of dried animal dung and sticks nearby on the ground. She polished her simple plates and bowls with smooth stones and then painted each of them with a clay slip as smooth as cream. As a young boy I was completely in love with clay, and still am. What Maria did for me with this refined earth was pure magic: she gave it wings both literally and figuratively, with black on black creation. Her work space and art gave life to my seeing beauty in a hand-made object, and her wings, in every sense and meaning of the word, took their flight in the dark of night around her beautiful circular vessels.
Diversity and a prevalence of art have always testified to the health and well-being of a culture. The island of Bali, as recently as the mid twentieth century, had close to 85 percent of its population involved in some form of art, be it music, painting, sculpture or dance. Anthropologists have credited its centuries of security in semi-isolation, with abundant fresh water and a developed agriculture, as the catalyst for its remarkable artistic embrace. Likewise, the Mimbre Indian culture of southwestern New Mexico inhabited a very small narrow fertile valley for almost one thousand years of peaceful existence, and produced some of the most remarkable graphic black and white designs on pottery the world has ever known.
Last weekend, on a beautifully mild Sunday in late February, Martha and I stood on a lowland rise along the western shore of the Hudson River. The snow-capped mountains of the Catskills rose majestically to our west and geese gathered in the calm estuaries at the water’s edge. We were there in this quiet, semi-remote reach of land between mountain and river at the request of a friend, to offer suggestions towards the design and construction of a remarkable organic structure to be built on the site during this coming year. A sound temple, with walls of woven white oak, will rise like a sacred flower along the river. An architectural vessel of acoustic vision, honoring the art of handwork. A form for the future by a group of young artists who have arrived at the helm of this boat just as their time takes to a new light. This, like all art, is hard to contain or describe with words beyond its own remarkable skin. A pulsating heart that gives life to form and brings color to blood gives flight to all of us.
otego, new york
Photos by the author
By Carla Nordstrom
I picked one of the worst late February days to drive to Barlow’s General Store to visit with owners Rachel and Glen Gaetano. It was pouring rain as I drove along County Route 14; the pavement was full of puddles with streams sliding down each hill. Just as I arrived, the rain turned to snow and I began to worry about the drive home. Walking into Barlow’s quieted my nerves and helped me remember that spring is on the way.
Rachel and Glen became the new owners of Barlow’s General Store in January of 2012. Barlow’s has been in continuous operation since 1841 and was not closed for renovations when the new owners took over. Not that there haven’t been changes and additions to the store. A full kitchen was added, as well as a deli section and a restroom. Tables, chairs, even a checkerboard perched on a barrel, are scattered throughout so that patrons can enjoy delicious homemade food and conversation over cups of locally processed coffee and tea. The decor is airy and pleasing, providing a boost of hope on a gray and wintry day.
They also serve homemade chili and soups. The cakes, cookies, and brownies are all baked on the premises. On Fridays, fresh baked goods from Bread Fellows Bakery of Bovina are delivered. Breakfast sandwiches and brunch specials such as sausage and biscuits are served on weekends. Also, if you have a sweet tooth, you won’t want to miss the donuts and cupcakes. Rachel made a compelling point about satisfying a craving for sweets: if you are lusting for cake and you bake one, you have to figure out what to do with the rest of the cake once you’ve had your slice. Barlow’s baked delicacies offer a chance for sensible portion control.
Groceries are available from chips and traditional staples such as canned goods to Red Mill flours, local honey, and maple syrup. Milk, eggs, cheese, fresh produce, and beer can be found in the refrigerator. A huge freezer case stands at the back of the store filled with locally grown meat, pasta, pesto, and breads from Tribeca Ovens. After a long day at work or a drive up from the city, when you know that your refrigerator at home is empty, you can pick up the makings for a delicious meal of salad, chili, soup, or pasta, and bread. Lots of the products that are featured at Barlow’s are a result of customer requests. Rachel and Glen will do their best to carry what you want. They also cater parties or events with cold cut platters and salads
Barlow’s has an eclectic selection of items for sale throughout the store. The hardware section is in an alcove off to the right. Nails or saw blades can be purchased. If you are in the middle of a home repair job in Treadwell and run out of something, there is a good chance you can pick it up at Barlow’s. Locally made crafts such as pottery, candles, and birdhouses are available. Wally’s Wood Shop has a table with rectangular and oval cutting boards. Just like Ralph’s Pretty Good Grocery in Lake Woebegone, if you can’t find it at Barlow’s, you can probably do without it.
A number of years ago when students still went to the old Treadwell School, a barber came to Barlow’s once a week and boys would be dismissed early to get their hair cut. The local mailman brought the barber to town because he didn’t drive. Barlow’s has always been a meeting place and a community resource at the crossroads of County Routes 14 and 16. Rachel and Glen are committed to continuing this tradition. They have lots of ideas of ways to serve the needs of the Treadwell community. Artists Over Easy meets for Saturday morning breakfasts. There are plans to renovate the rooms upstairs and create a community space for meetings and classes.
Among other services available at Barlow’s are a community bulletin board, an ATM, and copy and fax machines.
Who knows, soon you may be able to get your hair cut again at Barlow’s.
Support local producers. Shop at a local store. Stop by at Barlow’s General Store.Barlow’s General Store
4487-4489 County Rte. 14
Hours: Monday, Wednesday through Saturday 7:00-6:00
(Closed on Tuesday)
by Richard A. Lacey and Irving Wesley Hall
On February 5th, our Oxford Village Board voted 4 to 1 – a super-majority – to pass an amendment to its zoning laws, prohibiting industrial activities within the village.
That fourth “yes!” vote meant that Oxford Village has banned fracking – a decision that under New York State’s Constitutional principle of Home Rule cannot be overturned. Oxford Village celebrated its historic decision to become the first municipality in Chenango County to create a No Frack zone.
Unfortunately gas industry operatives who read the Norwich Evening Sun saw no cause to celebrate.
Settled in 1789 by American Revolution veterans, rural Oxford village and town straddles the Chenango River and boasts idyllic lakes, streams, and farmland. The current village population is 1584; the town 3992. Village residents elect their own government; village and town voters jointly choose the Town Board.
The February vote triggered an unexpected chain reaction that pits the pro-gas Town Board against the anti-gas Village. Legally, there’s little room for compromise.
This conflict has significance for Chenango County, New York State, the future of gas drilling, and the fate of the planet.
It all began last summer, when Village Mayor Terry Stark and Town Supervisor Lawrence Wilcox organized Vision Plan workshops that engaged the community in visualizing Oxford‘s future and planning for decades. Faculty and graduate students from SUNY in Syracuse facilitated the Vision Planning Project. That name inspired some participants to call ourselves The Oxford Visionaries.
The mayor’s and supervisor‘s goal was a new Comprehensive Plan for the town and village because the last joint plan was created in 1970. The collective energy flowed freely into the meetings and hearings of the Village Board, Village Planning Board and even the Town Planning Board…but not Supervisor Wilcox‘s Town Board.
The other three boards tried to implement the Vision Plan. They welcomed the community to their meetings, set goals, maintained order, stayed on task, listened critically to all sides, did their homework, discussed options, and took action responsibly.
Wilcox’s approach to public meetings is grudgingly to grant six citizens five minutes each per meeting. Usually all five board members spend the next half hour staring silently like glum school boys.
Future battle lines were drawn early but remained hidden until the village vote.
In late summer, fracking opponents mailed everyone in the village and town a copy of the Flowback newspaper, reliable information about troubling issues surrounding hydraulic fracturing. The Visionaries and their supporters collected 350 letters for Mayor Stark recommending a moratorium, and submitted more than 1000 signatures opposed to hydraulic fracturing to the Town Board.
Under Mayor Stark’s leadership, the village’s courageous and patient quest for truth helped its Planning Board propose a nine-month moratorium to enable the village to revise its zoning regulations and preserve the traditional, rural and healthful character beloved by the overwhelming majority of its residents.
Then lightning struck our village!
At the final December 11th village Board hearing, a landowner from the town blocked the moratorium effort and threatened to sue the Board – and each individual member – if it approved the moratorium. The board unanimously tabled the moratorium.
Nevertheless, the Village Board refused to give up. In another fascinating turn, Mayor Stark reviewed its regulations with Community Environmental Defense Council attorney David Slottje – leading to the February 5th 4 to 1 vote to approve a measure prohibiting any industrial activity not currently permitted within its boundaries.
But our sigh of relief was premature.
Disregarding the super-majority vote, the pro-gas Chenango County Planning Board rejected the proposed amendment, provoking the present conflict between Mayor Stark’s Village Board and Supervisor Wilcox’s Town Board. The county reminded us that New York State law requires both village and town to reconcile the village’s new 2013 anti-gas law and the town’s 2007 pro-gas law. Both must be in accord with a new joint Comprehensive Plan.
The Oxford Vision Plan returns! But the stakes have risen dramatically. Chenango County has been working closely with gas industry lobbyists for years, and Town Supervisor Wilcox has a gas lease with bankrupt Norse Energy. He is also the Chairman of the County Board of Supervisors! The county pro-gas advocates expect Wilcox‘s pro-gas position to win over the Village‘s new law, but the community – especially the thousand anti-fracking signatories – has other ideas. Another powerful force – young people – has yet to enter the fray. They were conspicuously absent from last year‘s Vision workshops planning their future. Stay tuned, for the Oxford Visionaries aim to bring their voices into the conversation!
(Follow updates of this story on OxfordVisionaries.org.)
by Norm Farwell
Sometimes doing the right thing costs less too. Utility bills are a case in point. If you want your electricity cheap and clean and green, you have two options: install solar PV panels yourself, or sign up for a green “energy supply company” (ESCO for short) so that the power you buy over the grid comes from renewable sources. The first option is more complicated, but will probably save you more in the long run. The second option takes only a phone call or a few minutes online.
Until 1996, NYSEG billed customers for generating the power and also for transporting it. With deregulation, customers pay NYSEG for transmission but can choose from a range of energy suppliers. Most power suppliers buy from a mix of sources: coal, natural gas, nuclear, oil, etc. Some ESCOs, like Energy Cooperative of NY-Renewables, offers customers 100% renewable energy produced from wind, biomass, and hydroelectric sources and sell it at rates below what NYSEG charges for the fossil fuel version.
This might seem like a useless bit of paperwork, except for one thing– generating electricity is really dirty business. About two thirds of the energy used to generate electricity from fossil fuel is lost before it even gets to anyone’s house – up the smokestack, through the wires, etc. This means that your 95% efficient water heater is probably less than 30% efficient when you consider the big picture. So it makes sense to put in those curly light bulbs, buy energy star appliances, plug electronics into a smart power strip, and generally use as little of the precious stuff as possible.
After you’ve done all that, you can unplug from the dirty grid and switch to renewable electricity. For Energy Cooperative of NY-Renewables, go to www.ecny.org or call them at 716- 842-1697 and switch to the “renewable electric” program. There are other green energy suppliers as well – the list is at www.askpsc.com. Look for the link to New York’s Green Power Program.
Do you have a favorite dish that you take to potluck dinners? Please share it with the rest of our community by sending it in to the Franklin Farmers’ Market Potluck Cookbook. Carla Nordstrom is compiling the recipes and looking for main dishes, salads, baked goods, and desserts that include fresh ingredients. Local ingredients are great, but don’t feel you have to limit yourself to the 200-mile rule.
Send recipes to Carla at firstname.lastname@example.org. Make sure to include your name and where you got the recipe if it is not your own.
We’re hoping to have this cookbook available for sale at this summer’s farmers’ market. Any proceeds will be used to support the Franklin Farmers’ Market.