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The Journal News

6 reasons why Cold Spring is hot

By Audrey Green • Putnam Magazine • June 30, 2008

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If you think you know everything about this sleepy little village, well - wake up. New attractions and interesting events abound in Cold Spring, so during the next couple of months, this corner of Putnam will be anything but boring. Visitors and residents alike, read on. You're about to find out just how lively this village can be.

Listen to the music

By day, for the last 85 years, the Cold Spring Bandstand has been a tranquil place to sit back and watch the Hudson River flow by. But for the last six summers, by night, starting at 5:30, the Chamber of Commerce has transformed it into a hopping place to get up and dance to the Summer Concert at the Bandstand Series.

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On opening night, July 6, The Veltz Family - Jeannie, Ken and their three children - kicks things off. (theveltzfamily.com).

On July 13, expect spacey guitar riffs from the Cold Spring-reared Buddy Traina Band (bud dytraina.com).

The duo Rolla (rollaband.com) is scheduled to present its blend of vocal harmony and alternative pop on July 20.

Hudson Valley native Dar Williams (darwilliams.com) takes the stage on July 27, followed by blues/country songstress Charlie Faye on Aug. 3, and soulful pop singer Jeffrey Gaines on Aug. 10.

Groovy folk-jammers Gandalf Murphy and the Slambovian Circus of Dreams (slambovia.com) brings the circus on Aug. 17 and Aug. 24, New Yorker David Kraai (davidkraai.com) will belt out his suspiciously Southern brand of country-rock. All you'll have to bring are your dancing shoes - all performances are free.

Working woman

When Cecilia Dinio Durkin was unable to convince local businesses to sell traditional African craft products to generate income for the San Bushmen women of Botswana, she got to work - Women's Work. She opened the shop on Main Street in 2006, and began importing the tribe's handmade pieces - made from ostrich eggs - to sell, herself. Now, she's reaping the rewards.

Her Fair Trade Federation-certified business moved across the street to a new location in March, where, Durkin boasts, "We've doubled in size!" Besides the San Bushmen, the store helps support multiple other groups from Botswana by selling products you'd be hard-pressed to find elsewhere. Among them: Marula Oil, also known as "Africa's Miracle Oil," a vitamin C-enriched essential oil used to treat mosquito bites and other skin irritations.

Best of all, in the old store, the only open space to display African art and fabric paintings was high on the walls, above the merchandise and almost out of sight. In the new space, you can admire the pieces in a separate, fine-art gallery and garden.

Durkin's hard work hasn't gone unnoticed; in April, the community and the Chamber of Commerce voted to award her the prestigious "Innovation in Business Award."

Trendy afternoon

Born Lucky brought children's fashion (and more) to Main Street, when the store opened in April. Bring your little ones in, and owner Kristin DaLisa will fit your prima ballerina with a raspberry-pink chiffon petticoat-skirt (it puffs out when she twirls).

For your mini punk-rocker, a pair of cuffed, indigo greaser jeans (with hidden elastic, to keep them up without sacrificing style), paired with a skater T.

Afterward, to reward their patience through the cooing and cheek-pinching, walk them over to the Village Scoop for ice cream. Owner Tom Rolson turned lemons into lemonade after a robbery last year, when, while making necessary repairs, he renovated and upgraded the 20-year-old staple.

He added a brick outdoor patio and an espresso bar, which serves three house-blends of coffee, along with a new menu of pies and other homemade desserts.

See the light

Many Light Hands, a new holistic wellness center on Main Street, has brought services to town that you might not have tried, but they're sure to lift your spirits. Among them: relaxation workshops, yoga classes, Reiki healing (stress-reduction therapy that channels and redirects energy using the hands) and polarity therapy (balancing the body's energies through nutrition, exercise and spiritual counseling).

But even if mystical healing isn't your thing, this shop is worth a visit. Owner Patricia Traina stocks her shelves exclusively with local art and merchandise - including pictures, handmade cards and paintings by local artists like Carla Goldberg, Julie Tooth, Lisa Scheffer and Nick Cirillo.

Cathryn's comforts

Is your midweek routine falling short of fabulous? Get off the couch and stop by Cathryn's Tuscan Grill for a Tuesday Night Flight. From 7 to 9:30 p.m., the restaurant offers a round of tastings that feature high-quality wine, port, Scotch and other libations. For $8 to $15, breeze through three or four 2-ounce glasses, go over tasting notes with company reps, and get in a little weeknight socializing.

Bands subject to change; check the Web site Coldspringchamber.com
Women's Work; 66 Main St.; 845-809-5299.
Born Lucky; 64 Main St.; 845-809-5476; bornluckyonline.com.
Village Scoop Coffee House & Ice Cream Parlor; 1 Railroad Ave.; 845-265-2305.
Many Light Hands; 69-71 Main St.; 845-809-5322; manylighthands.com.
Cathryn's Tuscan Grill; 91 Main St.; 845-265-5582; tuscangrill.com.

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