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THE HEART OF THE EMPIRE STATE

M ARCH 2 0 2 0

BESTIES

2020 PEOPLE &

PLACES COLONIE CENTER LEADS THE GREAT MALL COMEBACK

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JOHN GRAY’S EPIC STORY

Inside Colonie Center, winner of ‘Best Shopping Mall/Center’ in this year’s ‘Besties.’

B ESTIES 2 0 2 0 P EO P L E & P L ACES

MARCH 2020

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inside MARCH 2020

10

Cover Story

B ACK TO T HE MALL BY NATALIE MOORE F R A N C E S C O D ’A M I C O

photography by

E XC LU S I V E LY F O R C A P I TA L R E G I O N L I V I N G

12

CAPITAL REGION LIVING

Besties 2020 PEOPLE & PLACES

38

BACK TO T HE F UT URE I N T H E CATS KI LL MO UNTAI NS BY VIKKI MORAN The Grateful Traveler Benita Zahn

10

42 EVENTS CALENDAR

47 PLAY: CROSSWORD BY NATALIE MOORE

48 BEFORE YOU GO: FINNEGAN’S GOAT BY JOHN GRAY ADVERTISING SECTION

21 BESTIES 2020: THE WINNERS’ CIRCLE 40 PETS

12

38

ON THE COVER (and top right) Colonie Center photographed by Francesco D’Amico exclusively for CAPITAL REGION LIVING. Shot on location in Albany, NY.

(p.12) DIANE CHAPPELL; (p. 38) THE SHANDAKEN INN

9 U P FR O N T: A R E T H ES E F UT URE ‘ B EST I E ’ W I NNE RS? ( WE THINK SO! )


CAPITAL REGION LIVING THE HEART OF THE EMPIRE STATE

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From The Editors

THEY’RE BACK! THE ‘BESTIES’ ARE HERE AGAIN

Colonie Center won best mall/ shopping center in this year’s Besties; read about all the top Capital Region malls on page 10.

FRANCESCO D’AMICO

B

esties season is back, Capital Region! Our ultimate, annual, comprehensive survey, spanning all 11 counties of the area, saw thousands of Upstate New Yorkers submit ballots between NovemberDecember 2019, writing in their votes for “best of” in categories ranging from pet spa and radio sportscaster to Bloody Mary and Indian cuisine. In this issue, we reveal the Besties winners for the people and places categories, and the results truly showcase the diversity of venues, services and shops—and the amazing talent—the Capital Region has in its orbit.. Be sure to flip through the Besties section (pages 1237) to meet all the winners and runners up. But that’s not all, folks. On page 9, we predict the Besties winners of the future; on page 10, we salute Capital Region malls (they’re actually thriving!); and on page 38, we travel back in time to the Catskills’ glory days via the Grateful Traveler’s stay at the Shandaken Inn. And as always, you can find a truly unforgettable story by perennial Bestie winner John Gray on the back page. The best news of all? Another Besties issue is on its way: Be sure to pick up the May issue of CAPITAL REGION LIVING, available on April 30, for the grand reveal of the winners of our food and drink categories. We’re getting hungry (and thirsty) just thinking about it. —The Editors

MARCH 2020 | CRLMAG.COM | 7


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8 | CAPITAL REGION LIVING | MARCH 2020


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UP FRONT

Bubbling under...

Are These Future ‘Bestie’ Winners? (We Think So! ) » NewsChannel 13’s Allison Finch and Adirondack Axe lead the pack. «

W

e set out to identify some people and places that might make future Bestie winners around the Capital Region. Here’s what we came up with.

BY MORGAN FECHTER

shops, opened its doors in summer 2019 and offers a selection of classic but trendy clothing—from brands such as Alchemy Goods, Tailor Vintage and Alternative Tees— that have a “lived in” feel.

HEATHER’S NATURALS

432 Franklin Street, Schenectady Heather’s Naturals is a dream for beauty and skincare lovers. Its products include a variety of organic cosmetics, as well as CBD-infused items and beauty supplements.

Britches of Troy

BRITCHES OF TROY

NewsChannel 13’s Allison Finch

NEWSCHANNEL 13’S ALLISON FINCH

Allison Finch began as a part-time weather anchor at NewsChannel 13 in January. At press time, she’s in her last semester at the University at Albany, where she’s studying atmospheric science and mathematics. You can watch

her forecasts on Thursdays at noon and Sunday mornings.

Heather’s Naturals

216 River Street, Troy Britches of Troy is a new menswear shop that opened in October 2019, offering trendy and affordable apparel for the fashion-conscious man. Customers can book appointments for personalized styling sessions.

ADIRONDACK AXE

870 U.S. 9, Queensbury Adirondack Axe opened last December and offers guests the opportunity to (safely) engage in the sport of axe throwing. Book an hour-long open throwing session for 1-4 people or schedule a group session by appointment.

UNION HALL SUPPLY CO.

Adirondack Axe

437 Broadway, Saratoga Springs Union Hall Supply Co., one of Saratoga’s only menswear

Union Hall Supply Co.

MARCH 2020 | CRLMAG.COM | 9


YOU ARE HERE

BACK TO THE MALL The Capital Region’s malls are surviving—and thriving! BY NATALIE MOORE P H O T O G R A P H B Y F R A N C E S C O D ’A M I C O

10 | C A P I T A L R E G I O N L I V I N G | M A R C H 2 0 2 0


W

herever it is you might live in America, the doom and gloom surrounding the onceglamorous shopping mall is almost unavoidable. While malls were all the rage after World War II, when many Americans were moving from cities to the suburbs— and reached an apex in popularity in the 1980s and 1990s—several decades later, they appear to be on their way out. But the national trend doesn’t seem to apply to us here in the Capital Region. Exhibit A: Albany’s Crossgates Mall, which has been in reinvention mode in recent years. “The concept of ‘mall’ is actually undergoing a healthy natural selection where only the strongest, fittest and most diversified survive,” says Crossgates’ Marketing Director Jennifer Smith. “That’s why Crossgates has continued to be so strong and successful as a thriving shopping, dining and entertainment travel and tourism destination.” Indeed, over the past few years the Capital City mall has opened a string of new attractions—including live music venue Skyloft, the FunnyBone Comedy Club and the world-renowned Spa Mirbeau—rather than closing them. Another area mall that’s bucking the trend? The 2020 Bestie-winning Colonie Center. It’s doing so by creating lasting relationships with its shoppers, says Marketing and Business Development Manager Marissa McCarren. “Colonie Center isn’t just a place to come and shop,” she says. “It’s a place where you create memories with your friends and family members.” Here are five area malls—including the two listed above— that are finding creative ways to thrive in the era of online shopping.

(from top) Crossgates Mall is home to many stores, restaurants and attractions found nowhere else in the Capital Region; Spa Mirbeau has quickly become a Crossgates hotspot; (opposite) Colonie Center is the Capital Region’s oldest enclosed shopping mall.

VIA|PORT ROTTERDAM

When typical mall attractions just weren’t cutting it, VIA|Port Rotterdam changed things up, introducing VIA Aquarium, the Capital Region’s lone aquarium, offering 37 exhibits, including immersive tunnel tanks. Now, the mall is a destination for school field trips and families from all over Upstate New York. WHAT’S HOT: Via Entertainment, Tribes Hill Heritage Center, Schenectady Theatre For Children

CROSSGATES MALL

CLIFTON PARK CENTER

COLONIE CENTER

WILTON MALL

Conveniently located right off of the Northway (it even has its own exit!), Crossgates Mall has certainly increased its offerings to include stores, restaurants and attractions found nowhere else in the Capital Region (see: the Apple Store). WHAT’S HOT: All In Adventures Escape Room, Dave & Busters, Spa Mirbeau, Lego, Yogibo, Texas De Brazil, Skyloft, Apex Entertainment, FunnyBone Comedy Club

Big things are happening at Colonie Center, the Capital Region’s first enclosed shopping mall (it opened in 1966) and winner of the 2020 Bestie Award for best mall or shopping center. It recently welcomed the arcade Pac-Man Zone and has announced plans to open an REI, which would be Upstate New York’s first. WHAT’S HOT: L.L. Bean, Heroes Hideout, Cheesecake Factory

A 2019 article in Curbed NY argued that “[the malls] that are thriving are… [offering] a hybrid retail experience, now centered on food rather than fashion.” A local example is Clifton Park Center, which has expanded outward to offer door-todoor shopping and has opened a wide variety of restaurant options. WHAT’S HOT: Sky Zone Trampoline Park, Buffalo Wild Wings

When you think of mall food, you think of greasy food court pizza, Chinese food and huge pretzels. While the Wilton Mall does boast an Auntie Anne’s, it’s also home to greener fare: Healthy Living is a yearround hotspot, while the Saratoga Farmers’ Market makes its winter home there. WHAT’S HOT: Healthy Living, Bow Tie Cinemas, BJs Wholesale Club, Planet Fitness

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Besties CAPITAL REGION LIVING

PEOPLE AND PLACES

CULTURE ART GALLERY

Albany Institute of History & Art 125 Washington Avenue, Albany Founded in 1791, this museum is one of the oldest in the US, and it’s our region’s storehouse for 35,000 objects, from paintings and sculpture to clothing and furniture. The elegant gallery of Hudson River School paintings is a favorite with visitors. Regional artists are showcased, too. Albany Center Gallery 488 Broadway, Suite 107, Albany The Hyde Collection 161 Warren Street, Glens Falls

CHILDREN’S MUSEUM

CMOST (Children’s Museum of Science & Technology) 250 Jordan Road, Troy Live snakes, rabbits, owls and lizards, anyone? Toddlers, preschoolers and elementary school-age kids have fun in Dino Discovery, play with gravity on the Magnetic Ball Wall and create their own inventions using kid-sized tools in Tinker Space. Shhh! There’s even a Sensory

Science Room, a quiet and calming space.

The Children’s Museum at Saratoga 69 Caroline Street, Saratoga Springs

- 23. Kids can compete in the Power Wheels Demolition Derby, watch a dog show, or pie-eating contest and take a spin on a Ferris Wheel. Wine tasting? Farmers’ market? Handmade gifts and souvenirs? Sure, it’s got those, too.

CONCERT HALL

Columbia County Fair 182 Hudson Avenue, Chatham

miSci (Museum of Innovation & Science) 15 Nott Terrace Heights, Schenectady

Troy Savings Bank Music Hall 30 Second Street, Troy Known for its exquisite acoustics, Troy Music Hall presents comedy shows, jazz, folk, classical and soul concerts by top musicians and entertainers from around the globe, plus regional favorites such as Albany Pro Musica and Troy Chromatics.

MOVIE THEATER

Crandell Theatre 48 Main Street, Chatham

Palace Theatre 19 Clinton Street, Albany

Pass the popcorn and break out the Skittles! The Crandell, which has been showing the best of Hollywood since 1926, wins our Bestie once again. Not only is it an architectural gem, but it’s also run by a local nonprofit. The 12th annual Farm Film Fest is scheduled for March 15.

COUNTY FAIR

Scotia Cinema 117 Mohawk Street, Scotia

Saratoga Performing Arts Center 108 Avenue of the Pines, Saratoga Springs

Altamont Fair 129 Grand Street, Altamont From toddler to great grandpa, there’s something for everyone at the Altamont fair, scheduled this summer from August 18

RED Denotes Winner | BLACK Denotes Finalist 12 | C A P I T A L R E G I O N L I V I N G | M A R C H 2 0 2 0

Saratoga County Fair 162 Prospect Street, Ballston Spa

MUSEUM

New York State Museum 222 Madison Avenue, Albany Turn back the clock and imagine

what Albany was like 400 years ago. A new exhibit about Fort Orange, the settlement that would become New York’s capital, tells the story with artifacts from archaeologists and paintings by Len Tantillo. There’s also a permanent exhibit on the 9/11 terrorist attacks, and the top floor of the museum provides a bird’s eye view of the city. Albany Institute of History & Art 125 Washington Avenue, Albany The Clark 225 South Street, Williamstown, MA

OUTDOOR SUMMER VENUE Saratoga Performing Arts Center 108 Avenue of the Pines, Saratoga Springs How can you not love SPAC? Pick your seat in the open-air amphitheater or on the lawn for the Philadelphia Orchestra, New York City Ballet or a rockin’ bunch of concerts from Live Nation. After the show, enjoy a cocktail at the Jazz Bar in the Hall of Springs. Park Playhouse in Washington Park Madison Avenue at New Scotland Avenue, Albany Tanglewood 297 West Street, Lenox, MA


BEST CONCERT HALL Troy Savings Bank Music Hall

SEASONAL EVENT

Albany Pro Musica 30 Second Street, Troy The world-class chorus, in residence at Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, continues its 39th season with three more spring concerts. The Albany Symphony’s American Music Festival, the concert series’ finale, is scheduled for May 30 at Troy’s Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC). Saratoga Race Course 267 Union Avenue, Saratoga Springs Night Terrors Haunted Farm 4193 Route 7, Schoharie

THEATER

Proctors 432 State Street, Schenectady Meow! Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Cats, a purr-fect musical for theater-goers of all ages, lands in Downtown Schenectady from the end of April to early May for a six-day run. Looking for some retro music? Before Cats, there’s Summer: The Donna Summer Musical and Jimmy Buffett’s Escape Margaritaville. Mac-Haydn Theatre 1925 New York 203, Chatham Troy Savings Bank Music Hall 30 Second Street, Troy

SERVICES ANIMAL HOSPITAL

TROY SAVINGS BANK MUSIC HALL

The Animal Hospital 2 Rocking Horse Lane, Slingerlands Scaredy cats and jumpy dogs get extra TLC at The Animal Hospital, a perennial favorite of CAPITAL REGION LIVING’S readership. Offering medical, surgical and dental care, the business was started by Dr. Ed Becker in 1974. When he retired, his daughter, veterinarian Lexi Becker, took over the business. East Greenbush Animal Hospital 2 Springhurst Drive South, East Greenbush

Sand Creek Animal Hospital 130 Wolf Road, Albany

APPLIANCE STORE

Green’s Appliance 1207 Central Avenue, Albany Family-owned and operated, Green’s is our 2020 winner in the Appliance Store category. Customers love the personal service. When it comes to appliances, furniture and mattresses, Green’s knows its manufacturers—and offers the best to its customers. Marcella’s Appliance Center 560 Broadway, Schenectady Market 32 Plaza - Shoppers World - 15 Park Avenue, Clifton Park Earl B. Feiden Appliance 785 Route 9, Latham 1775 Route 9, Clifton Park

AUTO SERVICE

Broadway Auto Clinic has been serving the Capital Region by repairing and inspecting foreign and domestic vehicles in its state-of-the-art facility. Broadway Auto even offers a free maintenance class for women. Bethlehem Auto Service 62 Hannay Lane, Glenmont Gochee’s Garage Inc. 329 Delaware Avenue, Delmar

CATERER

Mazzone Hospitality 743 Pierce Road, Clifton Park You dream up the event, and Mazzone makes it happen, from a simple backyard party to an over-the-top wedding at venues such as the Canfield Casino, the Hall of Springs or Key Hall at Proctors. Talk about hospitality! The Healthy Café Catering Co. 50 Yardboro Avenue, Albany

BANK

Nicole’s Special Events & Catering 556 Delaware Avenue, Albany

Founded in 1889 in Troy, Pioneer Bank now has 22 offices and is the only mutual bank serving the Capital Region. Know a local nonprofit in need of a boost? The bank’s Making Change Committee is comitted to supporting the youth in our community.

CHEF

Pioneer Bank Multiple Locations

Broadway Auto Clinic 3 Wolfert Avenue, Menands

Trustco Bank Multiple Locations

For more than two decades, Richard and Sandra Hameroff’s

Berkshire Bank Multiple Locations

Ian Bower Lost & Found Bar + Kitchen 942 Broadway, Albany Here’s a surefire way to get your mouth watering: At Lost & Found Bar + Kitchen, Chef Ian Bower’s reinventing pub food, one dish at a time. With whimsical platings such as gnocchi mac n’ cheese, cauliflower Reuben and octopus

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BEST FACIAL Breathe Massage Complexions Spa, an annual favorite among our readership, has been “pampering with a purpose” for more than three decades at two Capital Region locations: Albany and Saratoga Springs. Services include everything from massages and facials to nail care, sauna and steam. Prepare to be relaxed! Kimberley’s A Day Spa 982 New Loudon Road, Latham Spa Mirbeau 1 Crossgates Mall Road, Albany

DRY CLEANER

Stena Dry Cleaning 451 Albany Shaker Road, Albany Thank you, Stena, for your über-kind customer service experience, best-in-show laundry services and sew-good (get it?) tailoring. Our readers clearly have a bead on this dry cleaner, as they picked Stena last year as well. Best Cleaners Multiple Locations

Ric Orlando New World Bistro Bar 300 Delaware Avenue, Albany Jamie Ortiz 677 Prime 677 Broadway, Albany

CHIROPRACTOR

Dr. Tim Talmage Delmar Chiropractic 204 Delaware Avenue, Delmar A two-time Bestie winner, Dr. Tim Talmage has been working with patients since 1999 and says that the most important thing to consider as a chiropractor is what the patient sees as his or her health goals. That sounds like a winning formula to us. Dr. Lee Masterson Delmar Chiropractic 204 Delaware Avenue, Delmar Dr. Timothy Kelly East Greenbush Chiropractic 569 Columbia Turnpike, East Greenbush

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CREDIT UNION

CapCom Federal Credit Union Multiple Locations CapCom, the second largest credit union in the Capital Region, offers affordable financial services and friendly, one-on-one support. Because CapCom is locally owned by its members, it’s truly at your service. SEFCU Multiple Locations Sunmark Federal Credit Union Multiple Locations

CUSTOMER SERVICE

CapCom Federal Credit Union Multiple Locations Nope, you’re not seeing double. This year, CapCom won a pair of Bestie categories: Credit Union and Customer Service—the latter of which CapCom excels at, year in and year out. You’ll know you’re receiving the utmost care when you step into any of its Capital Region locations.

Worksite Benefits 3991 Route 2, Cropseyville Broadway Auto Clinic 3 Wolfert Avenue, Menands

CUTTING EDGE (ORIGINAL BUSINESS) Dove + Deer 32 Dove Street, Albany

Ah, the flavors! This neighborhood pub, located in a charming restored brownstone in Albany’s historic Center Square, is attracting attention (and a Bestie!) for its imaginative, vegetarian-friendly menu. The Tasting Lab 4856 Route 81, Greenville Native Lakes 14 Harriman Road Extension, Averill Park

DAY SPA

Complexions Spa for Beauty & Wellness 221 Wolf Road, Albany 268 Broadway, Saratoga Springs

Silvestri Dry Cleaners 69 Fuller Road, Albany 145 Vly Road, Schenectady

FACIAL

Breathe Massage 48 Hudson Avenue, Delmar For four years running, Breathe Massage has been a Bestie winner or finalist. Along with awesome facials, Breathe’s knowledgeable staff does all types of body massages and energy work. Take a break from all your daily stressors in its tranquil space, open seven days a week. Complexions Spa for Beauty and Wellness 221 Wolf Road, Albany 268 Broadway, Saratoga Springs Kimberley’s A Day Spa 982 New Loudon Road, Latham

FITNESS CENTER

Capital District YMCA Multiple Locations One of the region’s top nonprofit organizations—and gyms—the

(Breathe Massage) MEGAN MUMFORD PHOTOGRAPHY

corndogs, Bower’s menu has something for everybody.


Besties | People and Places YMCA strengthens not only bodies, but also communities. With 11 locations throughout the Capital Region, there’s a Capital District YMCA in nearly everyone’s backyard. Vent Fitness Multiple Locations Top Form Multiple Locations

FLORIST

Ambiance Floral 116 Everett Road, Albany Owner Michele Peters and her staff have 50 years of design experience, and they know how to “think outside the vase.” Their flowers not only come from local farms, but also from around the world. Felthousen’s Florist & Greenhouse 1537 Van Antwerp Road, Schenectady 250 Columbia Street, Cohoes Renaissance Floral Design 1561 Western Avenue, Albany

FURNITURE STORE

Old Brick Furniture 33-37 Warehouse Row, Albany 2910 Campbell Road, Schenectady Locally owned and family run, Old Brick debuted in 1965 in an old warehouse in Troy. It understands that furniture shopping is among the biggest life events. Need extra help? At the Schenectady store, there’s an in-house design service. Mooradians Furniture 800 Central Avenue, Albany 1758A Route 9, Parkwood Plaza, Clifton Park Taft Furniture 1960 Central Avenue, Albany 121 Ballston Avenue, Saratoga Springs

HAIR SALON

Choices Hair Studio 180 Delaware Avenue, Delmar Expertise in coloring and cuts—plus friendly service—are among the reasons why Choices was your No.1 choice this year. Starting small in 1993, Choices has grown to more than 17

stylists, including a curly hair specialist.

St. Peter’s Hospital 315 South Manning Boulevard, Albany

Rumors Salon and Spa 626 New Loudon Road, Latham

Ellis Hospital 1101 Nott Street, Schenectady

Fusion Salon 18 Division Street, Saratoga Springs

INSURANCE AGENCY

HEALTH CARE/HMO

CDPHP 500 Patroon Creek Boulevard, Albany Our readers picked CDPHP (again!) this year, because they appreciate CDPHP’s great service and wide selection of providers. CDPHP sponsors the annual Corporate Challenge, an epic 3.5 mile race at the Empire State Plaza that gets participants’ heart rates up in all the right ways. MVP Health Care 625 State Street, Schenectady Blue Shield of Northeastern New York 40 Century Hill Drive, Latham

HEATING & COOLING

Crisafulli Brothers Plumbing & Heating 520 Livingston Avenue, Albany For more than 80 years, Crisafulli Brothers Plumbing & Heating has been the local expert in the design, installation and servicing of plumbing, sewers, drains, heating and cooling. The family-owned operation, now in its third generation, has 150 employees and a fleet of more than 80 vehicles. Family Danz Heating & Cooling 404 North Pearl Street, Albany Long Energy Various Locations

Worksite Benefits (Cropseyville) 3991 Route 2, Cropseyville This year, Worksite Benefits lands a Bestie for Insurance Agency, plus was a finalist in the Customer Service category. And it’s easy to see why: The company specializes in custom benefit management solutions for companies large and small— and happy customers.

Rupp Baase Pfalzgraf Cunningham Attorneys, LLC 25 Walton Street, Saratoga Springs

MANI/PEDI

Rumors Salon and Spa 626 New Loudon Road, Latham Look your best with a manicure or pedicure at Rumors, which was founded in 1986 by Marri Aviza and Lisa Norgrove. “We want you to feel royally gorgeous from the inside out,” they say. Sounds good to us.

Aurora Inc. 120 Broadway, Albany

Rainbow Nails & Spa 1170 Central Avenue, Albany

John R. Zongrone Insurance Agency Inc. 1566 State Street, Schenectady

Deluxe Nails & Spa 241 Route 9W, Glenmont

LANDSCAPER

MARINA

Faddegon’s Nursery, Inc. 1140 Troy Schenectady Road, Latham Spring is on its way, and our readers clearly have Faddegon’s on their mind—the nursery offers an array of flowers, plants and shrubs for the green-thumbed. Locally owned by the same family since 1920, Faddegon’s will not only deliver, but also plant your plants for you. It has a preferred customer club and holds workshops on all manner of horticultural topics. Traditional Landscaping & Design 16 Van Rensselaer Road, Albany George’s Market & Nursery 945 Watervliet Shaker Road, Albany 240 Wade Road Extension, Latham

LAW FIRM

HOSPITAL

Meier Law Firm, PLLC 10 Utica Avenue, Latham

Albany Med is one of the largest private employers in the Capital Region and the only academic health science center in Northeastern New York. The hospital has 766 beds and 450 affiliated doctors.

Meier Law Firm’s motto is “it’s not just business, it’s personal.” So, it’s no wonder that the firm found its way into the top slot with CAPITAL REGION LIVING readers in 2020. Need counseling on elder law, estate planning and administration and real estate? You know who to get in touch with.

Albany Medical Center 43 New Scotland Avenue, Albany

Naviasky Law Firm, PLLC 1802 Eastern Parkway, Schenectady 125 Adams Street, Delmar

Albany Yacht Club 75 Broadway, Rensselaer Launched in 1873, the Albany Yacht Club is one of the oldest yacht clubs in the country. Its Hudson River docks offer slips to accommodate boats of all sizes, from 15-foot runabouts to 180foot yachts. Not a boat owner? Learn the (nautical) ropes with a social membership at the club. Donovan’s Shady Harbor Marina 70 Shady Harbor Drive, New Baltimore Coeymans Landing Marina 20 Marina Drive, Coeymans

MASSAGE

Laberge Massage Therapy 204 Delaware Avenue, Delmar Lauren Laberge seems to win this Bestie year after year, and readers tell us that she really listens to what her clients want and need. “I believe therapeutic massage is an integral piece of every person’s healthy body maintenance,” Laberge says. Breathe Massage 48 Hudson Avenue, Delmar Complexions Spa for Beauty and Wellness 221 Wolf Road, Albany 268 Broadway, Saratoga Springs

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Besties | People and Places

MEDICAL ESTHETICS

Lucie Capek, MD Plastic Surgery Capital Region Health Park 713 Troy Schenectady Road, Suite 308, Latham With 30 years of experience, Dr. Lucie Capek has expertise in areas such as cosmetic surgery of the face, breasts and body for women and men. She also specializes in minimally invasive facial procedures, such as Botox. Fun fact(s): Dr. Lucie Capek speaks French and Czech, and before she became a doctor, she was a ballerina. Artistry of Face 475 Albany Shaker Road, Albany Amazingly Ageless Medi-Spa 1202 Troy Schenectady Road, Latham

PAVING/SEALCOATING

L. Browe Asphalt Services US 20, Castleton-On-Hudson L. Browe Asphalt Services has been in business since 1960, and this is its second Bestie win. And L. Browe isn’t just about driveways: It does parking lots, tennis courts and private roads all over the Capital Region. Gabriel Contractors, Inc. 382 Truax Road, Amsterdam Luizzi Brothers Sealcoating & Paving 70 Tivoli Street, Albany

PET SPA

Pet Styles 1886 New Scotland Road, Slingerlands Poodles and pugs, terriers and spaniels trot to Pet Styles for their beauty treatments. Owner Sheila J. Kelle also offers day care and a boutique filled with unique items for your fur babies. Woof woof woof! (That means, “we’re No.1” in dog.) Pet Spas & Suites 1 Cerone Commercial Drive, Albany Head to Tail 1604 Union Street, Schenectady

PHOTOGRAPHER Hitlin Photography hitlinphoto.com

Meghan and Keith are back for another Bestie. Whether it’s for the most important day of your life—your wedding, of course— or a family photo shoot, Hitlin Photography is always a winner with customers in the greater Capital Region.

The Hot Yoga Spot Multiple Locations Jai Yoga 5 Vista Boulevard, Slingerlands

All Occasions Photography alloccasionsphoto.net Dino Petrocelli Photography dinopetrocelliphoto.com

SHOPPING

PILATES STUDIO

APPLE ORCHARD

Free Movement Pilates 500 Kenwood Avenue, Delmar Yes, Free Movement has won another Bestie. Whether in a private session or a group class, its expert instructors guide clients through all types of exercises. Workshops in breathing, tai chi, yin yoga and, yes, pilates are also scheduled in the studio.

Indian Ladder Farms 342 Altamont Road, Altamont This family-owned farm in Albany County is home to more than 300 acres of land that includes an apple orchard, berry patches, pumpkin fields and an animal pasture. In the fall, you can pick 12 varieties of apples. In the spring, local families are invited to visit its adorable baby animals.

Pilates Principle 578 New Loudon Road, Latham

Golden Harvest Farms 3074 US Highway 9, Valatie

Albany Pilates Center 3 Vatrano Road, Albany

Samascott Orchards 5 Sunset Avenue, Kinderhook

TREE SERVICE

BIKE SHOP

On A Limb Tree Care onalimbtreecare.com

Mad Dog Bicycles 561 Delaware Avenue, Delmar

order books for any customer and offers free gift wrapping for regularly priced items. The Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza 1475 Western Avenue, Albany Northshire Bookstore 424 Broadway, Saratoga Springs 4869 Main Street, Manchester Center, VT

BRIDAL SHOP

Angela’s Bridal 501 Broadway, Troy Attention CAPITAL REGION LIVING readers! Angela’s has big news: The bridal shop has been combined with A Love Story Bridal, which was a Bestie finalist. Janet Cooper, who owns both businesses, put them together in a beautiful new space in Downtown Troy. Janet has more than 22 years of experience in gown design and tailoring and worked as head of wardrobe for the English National Opera in London. DeAnna’s 3991 Route 43, West Sand Lake A Love Story 501 Broadway, Troy

CSA/COMMUNITY CO-OP

Honest Weight Food Co-op 100 Watervliet Avenue, Albany

Operating since 2005, Mad Dog is an authorized dealer of Jamis bicycles (road, comfort, hybrid and mountain). Got a vintage Schwinn in your garage? Owner Matt Devlin collects all kinds, including those “banana seat” Stingrays from the ’60s and ’70s.

Mark’s Tree Service 1971 Western Avenue, Albany

Honest Weight is a Bestie winner again, which is no surprise. Founded in 1976, the co-op is committed to providing affordable, high-quality natural foods and products for healthy living. And it’s all about giving back, too: In 2019, Honest Weight raised $20,000 for Capital Region food pantries.

CK Cycles 1370 Central Avenue, Albany

Sevenzocks Property Maintenance and Landscaping 1277 Route 9W, Selkirk

Fox Creek Farm 182 Fox Creek Farm Road, Schoharie

Steiner’s Sports Multiple Locations

Niskayuna Co-op 2227 Nott Street, Niskayuna

BOOKSTORE

CAR DEALER

Got a tree problem? On A Limb Tree Care does removal, pruning, cabling, planting and even cat rescue. (Meow!) It also has a 24/7 emergency line and serves 11 counties. Customers like On A Limb’s quick response and affordable prices.

YOGA STUDIO

Heartspace Yoga & Healing Arts 747 Madison Avenue, Albany 10 Second Street, Troy It’s no wonder that Heartspace Yoga & Healing Arts, which has

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studios in Albany and Troy, is a Bestie machine. Owners Andrew and Elizabeth Kasius offer classes from beginner to advanced—plus prenatal yoga, meditation and yoga teacher training.

I Love Books 380 Delaware Avenue, Delmar I Love Books is a wonderland of books, toys, greeting cards, jewelry and quirky items for all ages. The shop will special-

Keeler Motor Car Company 1111 Troy Schenectady Road, Latham Our audience has consistently been driven to Keeler because of


BEST PET SPA Pet Styles its overall excellence. A Capital District automotive fixture since 1967, Keeler’s known for its skilled professionals and array of services. Keeler’s quiver contains brands such as Honda, BMW and Mercedes-Benz, which are all available for sale or lease. Lia Auto Group Multiple Locations DePaula Chevrolet 785 Central Avenue, Albany

CLOTHING BOUTIQUE Truly Rhe 1 Broadway, Troy

One-of-a-kind clothing items for women are truly Truly Rhe’s specialty. Readers tell us it’s a fun place to shop for jewelry, accessories and gifts, too. Did we mention they like to party? This unique boutique hosts private shopping parties. Fancy Schmancy 641 New Loudon Road, Latham Circles Stuyvesant Plaza 1475 Western Avenue, Albany

CONSIGNMENT SHOP Some Old Something New 1969 New Scotland Road, Slingerlands

This Bestie-winning shop started more than 20 years ago with just clothing, eventually expanding to 3000 square feet of retail space that includes jewelry, handbags, collectibles, furniture and home decor. It’s a trip back in time. Finders Keepers Consignments 1603 Route 9, Clifton Park

(Pet Styles) CHAPPELL STUDIOS PHOTOGRAPHY

The Attic 3027 Main Street, Valatie

FARMERS’ MARKET

Troy Waterfront Farmers’ Market Monument Square, Troy (April-October) The Troy Atrium 49 Fourth Street, Troy (November-March) In the warmer months, what could be better than a stroll on River Street on market day? Aside from the fresh air, there

are always an abundance of fresh veggies, artisan breads, cheeses and the like at this award-winning farmers’ market. It’s simply the best. Delmar Farmers’ Market Bethlehem Central Middle School, 332 Kenwood Avenue, Delmar (May-December) Schenectady Greenmarket 105 Jay Street - City Hall, Schenectady (May-October) 432 State Street - Proctors, Schenectady (November-April)

GARDEN NURSERY

Faddegon’s Nursery, Inc. 1140 Troy Schenectady Road, Latham It’s all coming up roses for Faddegon’s. Faddegon’s picked up two Besties this year, in the Landscaping and Garden Nursery category. To get in the springtime mood, there’s nothing like a trip to Faddegon’s, where you can immerse yourself in the sight and smell of hundreds of flowers. Hewitt’s Garden Centers Multiple Locations

Samascott ‘s Garden Market 65 Chatham Street, Kinderhook

GIFT SHOP

The Cross Eyed Owl Gift Shop 3143 US Highway 9, Valatie Relax and take your time browsing among the many treasures at the Cross Eyed Owl. Whether it’s unique gifts, home decor pieces, cards or seasonal items, you’ll have a shopping experience like no other at the Cross Eyed Owl. Wit’s End Parkwood Plaza 1762 Route 9, Clifton Park Pearl Grant Richmans Stuyvesant Plaza 1475 Western Avenue, Albany

HARDWARE STORE

Robinson’s Hardware 1874 Western Avenue, Guilderland 1900 New Scotland Road, Slingerlands

cleaning! Robinson’s has Benjamin Moore paints for your indoor projects and Husqvarna outdoor power tools to get your yard in shape. Need a new grill? Robinson’s carries the Big Green Egg, Traeger and Weber models. Phillips Hardware Multiple Locations Mario’s Home Center 1057 Kinderhook Street, Valatie

HEALTH FOOD STORE

Honest Weight Food Co-op 100 Watervliet Avenue, Albany Honest Weight is a double winner in 2020, taking home the community co-op award and the health food store award. Honest Weight, just off of Interstate 90, is a 30,000-square-foot health food heaven. Honestly! Four Seasons Natural Foods 120 Henry Street, Saratoga Springs Green Grocer Natural Foods 1505 Route 9, Clifton Park

It’s time for some spring

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BEST JEWELER Joyelles Jewelers And the Bestie goes to…Colonie Center. People have been shopping here since 1966, when it was the first enclosed shopping mall in the Capital Region. Macy’s, L.L. Bean, Whole Foods, Five Guys and Moe’s Southwest Grill are just a few attractions that make this mall rule the roost. Crossgates Mall 1 Crossgates Mall Road, Albany Stuyvesant Plaza 1475 Western Avenue, Albany

SPORTING GOODS STORE Steiner’s Sports Multiple Locations

Steiner’s is your specialist for ski equipment, bikes and kayaks. The independently owned company has been serving Greene, Columbia and Albany counties for more than three decades. Sievert’s Sporting Goods 4804 State Highway 30, Amsterdam Alpin Haus Multiple Locations

Joyelles Jewelers 318 Delaware Avenue, Delmar Conveniently located in Main Square Shopping Center, Joyelles has a large inventory of wedding and engagement rings, gold and silver earrings and diamond bracelets. It does jewelry repair and cleaning, too: A Bestiewinning combination. Northeastern Fine Jewelry Multiple Locations Harold Finkle Your Jeweler 1585 Central Avenue, Albany

LIQUOR/WINE

Empire Wine & Liquor 1440 Central Avenue, Albany Empire Wine & Liquor has a huge selection, helpful staff and great prices. And before you head to the store, research your favorite brand with the “Ask Adam” feature on the shop’s website. Exit 9 Wine & Liquor 9 Halfmoon Crossing Boulevard, Halfmoon

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there). The 13,000-square-foot showroom features all the gear up close, and customers can test out hardware in try-out rooms.

SUPERMARKET

Mark Thomas Men’s Apparel Wolf Road Shoppers Park 5 Metro Park Road, Albany

John Keal Music Company, Inc. 819 Livingston Avenue, Albany 1758 Parkwood Plaza Route 9, Clifton Park

The premier provider of upscale men’s fashion in the Capital Region, you can trust Mark Thomas, to dress you right. The shop was founded in 2004 by Mark Goldfarb and Tom Fagan, who together have more than 45 years of experience in men’s wear. It’s now owned by Fagan’s son Kerry.

Blue Sky Studios 118 Adams Street, Delmar

Bestie winner Hannaford is named for Arthur Hannaford, who opened a produce market in 1883 in Portland, ME. In 1987, the chain expanded into New York State, and in 2016, it became part of Ahold Delhaize, which is based in the Netherlands. So, it’s not a stretch to call it an internationally flavored market.

All Star Wine & Spirits 579 Troy Schenectady Road, Latham

MENSWEAR SHOP

MUSIC STORE

Parkway Music Store 1777 Route 9, Clifton Park Established in 1994, Parkway is a locally owned musical instrument shop, specializing in electric/ acoustic guitars, basses, amps, effects pedals, keyboards, pro audio and drums (you can also take lessons and get repairs done

OPTICAL CENTER

Buenau’s Opticians, Inc. 228 Delaware Avenue, Delmar Buenau’s Opticians is a locally owned and operated business that’s offered quality service since 1915. It carries a large selection of eyewear and specializes in hard-to-fit patients. DiNapoli Opticians Multiple Locations Hughes Opticians 411 Kenwood Avenue, Delmar

SHOPPING MALL/CENTER Colonie Center 131 Colonie Center, Albany

Hannaford Multiple Locations

Price Chopper/Market 32 Multiple Locations Honest Weight Food Co-op 100 Watervliet Avenue, Albany

TIRE STORE

Adirondack Tire & Service Multiple Locations Adirondack Tire & Service is a locally owned, family-run business, which has been serving the Capital Region and Rutland, VT for more than 40 years, with certified trained technicians

(Joyelles Jewelers) MEGAN MUMFORD PHOTOGRAPHY

JEWELER


Besties | People and Places providing inspections, oil changes, brake and exhaust work, tune-ups and scheduled maintenance for area car owners. Warren Tire Service Centers Multiple Locations Grand Premier Tires and Custom Wheels 591 Columbia Turnpike, East Greenbush 3361 South Thompson Street, Schenectady

TRAVEL AGENCY AAA Hudson Valley Multiple Locations

Our readers once again awarded a Bestie to AAA Hudson Valley, where all of their travel needs are covered. AAA was founded in 1902, and the nonprofit is the nation’s leading provider of roadside assistance. Blue Skies Travel LLC 15 Troy Road, East Greenbush

visit to America and many presidential campaigns. He’s won many awards for his work on Channel 10, including a recent New York Emmy Award. John’s also an award-winning writer, with a popular monthly column that appears on the last page of this magazine.

MORNING ANCHOR

TALK 1300 show host Paul Vandenburgh, is the longestrunning morning radio show host in the Capital District. Boom!

PEOPLE AND MEDIA

EVENING ANCHOR John Gray

Celebrating his 25th year on television, John has covered the 9/11 terror attacks, the Pope’s

LOCAL RADIO PERSONALITY

Subrina Dhammi started working at NewsChannel 13 in 2005, just two weeks after graduating from Syracuse University. She’s covered several presidential visits and also had a small role in the movie The Place Beyond the Pines, shot in Schenectady. She and her husband were also recently featured on the February cover of CAPITAL REGION LIVING’s “Love” issue.

This year’s Bestie award in the Morning Team category goes to the Morning Anchor Bestiewinning Sabrina Dhammi, her co-anchor Asa Stackel and meteorologist Paul Caiano on NewsChannel 13.

Benita Zahn’s not only a NewsChannel 13 afternoon anchor, but she’s also the health reporter, producing and hosting Health Beat, a digital health interview program. Benita won a 2019 New York Emmy Award and was named one of the 100 Women of the Century by the Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber. She covered the inauguration of former President Barack Obama, the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Hurricane Katrina and the Unabomber trial.

WAMC snags our Bestie for local, national and world news. The station airs National Public Radio programming as well as its own daily program The Roundtable.

Paul Vandenburgh

MORNING TEAM

Benita Zahn

WAMC

Subrina Dhammi

Yankee Trails 569 3rd Avenue Extension, Rensselaer

AFTERNOON ANCHOR

NEWS RADIO

NewsChannel 13 Team

METEROLOGIST Steve Caporizzo

Steve Caporizzo has been chief meteorologist on Channel 10 since 1989. He’s been interested in weather since he was a boy and turned his lifelong hobby into a career. In 1990, he launched Pet Connection, airing stories about local animals, animal rescue services and pets available for adoption (the Pet Connection Facebook page has more than 90,000 likes).

LOCAL PRINT JOURNALIST John Gray

When John Gray’s not winning Besties for his evening news anchoring on Channel 10, he’s busy writing. His newspaper columns have earned him Columnist of the Year awards from both the Associated Press and New York News Publishers Association.

SPORTSCASTER Rodger Wyland

Rodger Wyland joined Albany’s NewsChannel 13 in 1986 as a weekend sports anchor/sports reporter, and is now the station’s sports director, anchoring at 6pm and 11pm. He also hosts Big Board Radio Sports Talk on WTMM 104.5, and is the play-by-play announcer for the University at Albany’s football and basketball programs.

PLACES ADIRONDACK INN

MUSIC RADIO

Mirror Lake Inn 77 Mirror Lake Drive, Lake Placid

Country station WGNA-FM holds the title of “longest unchanged format” in the Capital Region. It’s been a country music station since its launch in 1973.

Family owned since 1924, the Mirror Lake Inn is an Adirondack getaway that offers lakefront rooms and mountain scenery at the edge of the historic village of Lake Placid, which this year is celebrating the 40th anniversary

WGNA

of its hosting the 1980 Winter Olympic Games. The Inn is known for its scrumptious spa treatments, including an Adirondack Maple Sugar Body Scrub, and farm-to-table dining. Friends Lake Inn 963 Friends Lake Road, Chestertown Garnet Hill Lodge 39 Garnet Hill Road, North River

ASSISTED LIVING/ NURSING HOME

The Sentinel of Amsterdam 10 Market Street, Amsterdam Family owned and operated, The Sentinel offers individualized care in a homey setting. Our readers appreciate the Sentinel’s positive approach to senior living. Pine Haven Nursing & Rehabilitation Center 201 Main Street, Philmont Daughters of Sarah Senior Community 180 Washington Avenue Extension, Albany

B&B (3 HOURS)

Reluctant Panther Inn and Restaurant 39 West Road, Manchester Village, VT Each of the 20 rooms in this luxury boutique hotel has a fireplace and antique furnishings. The restaurant, under the direction of executive chef Sigal Rocklin, is known for its award-winning cuisine. Red Lion Inn 30 Main Street, Stockbridge, MA Mirror Lake Inn 77 Mirror Lake Drive, Lake Placid

CAMPGROUND

Rogers Rock Campground 9894 Lake Shore Drive, Hague On the quieter northern end of Lake George, Rogers Rock is popular with families. The tented set have easy access to swimming, bicycling, fishing, boating and hiking, and the campground’s super close to Fort Ticonderoga.

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Besties | People and Places

Schodack Island State Park 1 Schodack Island Way, Schodack Landing Lake George Escape Campground 175 East Schroon River Road, Lake George

DAY TRIP (3 HOURS) Lake Placid

Summer in Lake Placid is the time for hiking and lounging at the lake. When the snow flies, there’s outdoor ice skating, skiing and tobogganing. All year round you can visit the sites of the 1980 Winter Olympics—including the rink where the “Miracle On Ice” took place. And did we mention all of the wonderful shopping opportunities and restaurants? Cooperstown Lake George

DOG FRIENDLY

Washington Park State Street and Willett Street, Albany Washington Park’s more than just a green space to walk your dog—which is why it won this year’s Dog Friendly Bestie. It’s a stroll through history. The footbridge over the lake dates back to 1875 and is the oldest remaining original structure, while the lovely lake house was built in 1929.

GOLF COURSE (PRIVATE)

Mohawk Golf Club 1849 Union Street, Schenectady Designed by Devereux Emmet and opened in 1898, the Mohawk Golf Club is elegant, indeed. Members can relax on the terrace and bluestone patio that overlooks a lush 18-hole course flanked by oaks and pines. Wolferts Roost Country Club 120 Van Rensselaer Boulevard, Albany Troy Country Club 100 Troy Country Club Road, Troy

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GOLF COURSE (PUBLIC) Saratoga National Golf Club 458 Union Avenue, Saratoga Springs

Designed by Roger Rulewich and rated as one of America’s top golf courses by Golf Digest, the award-winning Saratoga National is an upscale experience. Its restaurant, Prime at Saratoga National, is also renowned for its modern American cuisine. Normanside Country Club 150 Salisbury Road, Delmar Orchard Creek Golf Club 6700 Dunnsville Road, Altamont

HIKING TRAIL

John Boyd Thacher State Park 830 Thacher Park Road, Voorheesville Thacher State Park sits on the Helderberg Escarpment, one of the richest fossil-bearing formations in the world, with panoramic views of the Hudson and Mohawk valleys. There are 13 miles of hiking trails, the most popular of which, Indian Ladder, is open from May 1 to November 15. Five Rivers Environmental Education Center 56 Game Farm Road, Delmar Peebles Island State Park 1 Delaware Avenue, Cohoes

HOTEL

The Desmond 660 Albany Shaker Road, Albany The Desmond’s locally owned and features 323 guest rooms and suites, including rooms with king-size beds and suites with private entrances. Modeled after a colonial village square, the two indoor courtyards are perfect for any gathering with their skylights, fountains and koi pond. The Adelphi Hotel 365 Broadway, Saratoga Springs The Century House 997 New Loudon Road, Latham

HUDSON VALLEY INN Buttermilk Falls Inn & Spa 220 North Road, Milton

When our readers crave a stressrelieving weekend, they head out to the Buttermilk Falls Inn & Spa, where guests are pampered in a world-class spa with a pool, sauna, steam room and juice bar. Did we mention yoga classes, too? Ohmmm. Mohonk Mountain House 1000 Mountain Rest Road, New Paltz

KID’S BIRTHDAY VENUE

The Pottery Place 1475 Western Avenue, Albany Children and adults can explore their creative side at The Pottery Place, where walk-ins are welcome seven days a week. No experience or tools necessary, and the staff will help you get started and answer all of your questions. KJ’s Gymnastics 3143 US Highway 9, Valatie ClubLife SportsZone 3143 US Highway 9, Valatie

KIDS CAMP

Camp Lovejoy 3476 Love Joy Road, Altamont Camp Lovejoy is the Boys & Girls Club of Schenectady’s summer day camp in the Helderberg Mountains. Kids are never bored, because the camp has a swimming pool, ponds, hiking trails, an outdoor amphitheater, an arts and crafts building, and an adventure ropes course. Camp Fowler 152 Pelcher Road, Lake Pleasant YMCA-Camp Chingachgook 1872 Pilot Knob Road, Kattskill Bay

PARK

John Boyd Thacher State Park 830 Thacher Park Road, Voorheesville This year, a trio of Besties are going to Thacher Park. Not only is it scenic and right in our backyard, but there’s also so

much to do there all year round. Park-goers can hike, mountain bike, cross-country ski, snowshoe, snowmobile, bird watch and more. The Crossings of Colonie 580 Albany Shaker Road, Loudonville Washington Park State Street and Willett Street, Albany

PICNIC SPOT

John Boyd Thacher State Park 830 Thacher Park Road, Voorheesville For generations, families have been picnicking in Thacher Park, where nine picnic shelters can be reserved for open-air parties. Saratoga Spa State Park 19 Roosevelt Drive, Saratoga Springs Grafton Lakes State Park 254 Grafton Lakes State Park Way, Grafton

55+ RETIREMENT COMMUNITY The Spinney Group Multiple Locations

With more than three decades of family ownership, the Spinney Group develops, constructs and manages full-service communities that enable residents to enjoy stress-free lifestyles. That also managed to swipe them this year’s Bestie. Shaker Pointe at Carondelet 1 Bell Tower Drive, Watervliet Beverwyck 40 Autumn Drive, Slingerlands

ROMANTIC GETAWAY INN

Longfellows Hotel & Restaurant 500 Union Avenue, Saratoga Springs A short drive from Downtown Saratoga Springs, Longfellows has a country setting and mountain views. Run, hike or bike on the nearby trail, and then retreat to your room and soak in the Jacuzzi. The Inn at Erlowest 3178 Lake Shore Drive, Lake George Mirror Lake Inn 77 Mirror Lake Drive, Lake Placid


Besties | People and Places

SARATOGA INN/HOTEL

The Inn at Saratoga 231 Broadway, Saratoga Springs Guests at this Victorian-era boutique hotel enjoy a complimentary breakfast buffet, gourmet dining and a cozy tavern. Other perks include vintage Roadmaster bicycles for riding around town and passes to Victoria Pool in the Saratoga Spa State Park.

Besties 2020:

WINNERS’ CIRCLE HHH

The Adelphi Hotel 365 Broadway, Saratoga Springs Longfellows Hotel & Restaurant 500 Union Avenue, Saratoga Springs 9

SKI AREA

Gore Mountain Ski Resort 793 Peaceful Valley Road, North Creek Gore gets this year’s Bestie for top Ski Area. The Adirondack ski destination has impressive stats: 110 trails, 2537 vertical feet and 14 lifts, including an 8-passenger gondola and 2 high-speed quads. Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort 37 Corey Road, Hancock, MA Whiteface Mountain 5021 Route 86, Wilmington

VERMONT INN

The Crafts Inn 10 West Main Street, Wilmington, VT An architectural treasure near Mount Snow, the Crafts Inn is the place for winter skiers and summer hikers. Yes, there’s a pool and a sauna there, too. Reluctant Panther Inn and Restaurant 39 West Road, Manchester Village, VT

Thank You for Voting The Adelphi Hotel

A SARATOGA INN & HOTEL “BESTIE” FOR 2019 & 2020!

The Equinox Golf Resort & Spa 3567 Main Street, Manchester Village, VT

WEDDING VENUE

Old Daley on Crooked Lake 2339 New York 43, Averill Park The historic Crooked Lake House is a lakeside estate featuring the romance and glamour of a bygone era. And with more than four decades in the catering biz, you can count on Old Daley to make your wedding dream come true.

INNOVATIVE DINING | PRIVATE EVENTS | OFF-PREMISE CATERING THE

Saratoga National Golf Club 458 Union Avenue, Saratoga Springs Glen Sanders Mansion 1 Glen Avenue, Scotia

BY DAVID BURKE

365 BROADWAY, SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY 12866 www.TheAdelphiHotel.com | (518) 678 - 6000

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Thanks for voting! ADIRONDACKTIRE.COM

WE CURE BALDNESS

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Silversea Cruises

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DON’T MISS FREE DREAM DESTINATION SEMINARS WITH AAA HUDSON VALLEY! Space is Limited. Join us for snacks, prizes & fun!

Reserve your seats today! Everyone is welcome at AAA Travel! Visit AAA.com/travelnights Call 518-426-1000 Email booktravel@aaahv.com For all events, please include name, event choices and number in your party! rev. 2/24/20

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ALL SHOWS:

6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. 618 Delaware Ave. Albany, NY 12209


BOLD AUTHENTIC SPIRITED torocantina.com

ALBANY’S NEWEST MEXICAN RESTAURANT 111 WOLF ROAD ALBANY, NY

UPSTATE NEW YORK’S PREMIER RESTAURANT, STEAKHOUSE, AND EVENT SPACE

677prime.com 677 broadway albany, NY


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SM

A Tasteful Way To Save

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Deals


THANK YOU! We think our members are the best, and we’re delighted to see the feeling is mutual. You voted CAP COM as BEST CREDIT UNION and for BEST CUSTOMER SERVICE. Your recognition means the world to us because providing the financial solutions you need, when you need them, is exactly why we’re here.

www.capcomfcu.org Federally insured by NCUA

Bank where you matter most.


H WINNERS’ CIRCLE H

VOTED #1 SPA

Voted Best Florist

in the Capital Region!

“Always thinking outside the vase” Ambiance loves flowers and has a passion for what they do! They work with the best suppliers from around the world, as well as local flower farms. Let them design the perfect arrangements for any occasion, including weddings, parties, and any corporate or personal event. Ambiance: creating floral artwork, one blossom at a time.

With locations in Albany and historic Saratoga Springs, NY

www.complexions.com

SUMMER NIGHTS ARE BETTER AT

CAMP FOWLER

116 Everett Road • Albany 518.446.9900 • ambianceflorals.com

All of us at Gochee’s Garage would like to thank the readers for voting for them! They have been family owned and operated since 1929, offering comprehensive automotive repairs, maintenance and excellent customer service. There’s no shop you can trust more to treat you right and take great care of your vehicle. They also sell used vehicles and are an Authorized Goodyear tire dealer. Call them today to ask a question or book an appointment for service.

Spend a week of your summer in the Adirondacks. Learn more at campfowler.org

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329 Delaware Avenue •  Delmar 518.439.5333 • gocheecars.com


Make it a Mediterranean Pizza Night! Grilled Naan Flatbreads with Hommus & Veggies SERVES 4 Ingredients: 1 Tbsp. Hannaford Extra Virgin Olive Oil 1/4 tsp. McCormick® Garlic Powder 1 Sweet onion, thinly sliced 1 Red bell pepper, thinly sliced 8 Large mushrooms, thinly sliced 1 cup Fresh Express® Baby Spinach 4 Naan flatbreads or pocketless pitas 1 cup Cedar’s® Original Hommus 1/2 cup Shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese 1/2 cup Cabot® Garlic & Herb Cheddar Cheese, shredded 2 tsp. McCormick® Oregano 2 Tbsp. Taste of Inspirations® Balsamic Vinegar Glaze Optional: McCormick® Red Pepper Flakes

Using hommus as your flatbread base adds a bit of zesty flavor!

Put a Mediterranean (and lighter) spin on pizza night with warm and crispy naan flatbreads topped with hommus and fresh veggies. Using hommus as your flatbread base adds a bit of zesty flavor, while topping with veggies provides a fresh and healthy crunch.

Directions: 1. Heat oil in skillet over medium heat. 2. Add garlic, onion, bell pepper and mushrooms. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 8 minutes or until veggies are soft. 3. Remove from heat and stir in spinach. Set aside. 4. Preheat oven to 400°F. Place all four flatbreads on a baking sheet and toast for a couple of minutes until lightly browned. Remove flatbreads from oven. 5. Spread surface of flatbreads with hommus (just like you would sauce for a pizza). 6. Top with veggies and cheeses and sprinkle with oregano and red pepper flakes. 7. Return flatbreads to oven and bake for about 5 minutes or until cheese is melted. 8. Drizzle with balsamic vinegar glaze and serve.

simply healthy from your Hannaford Dietitians Have questions about your health? Our team of registered dietitians offer free nutritional services online and in-store. Visit hannaford.com/dietitians to find out more.

Nutritional Information: Amount per serving: Calories 500; Total Fat 25 g; Saturated Fat 7 g; Sodium 650 mg; Carbohydrate 51 g; Fiber 10 g; Protein 21 g; Calcium 393 mg


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#1 for Paving/sealcoating

Thank you for voting us

Smooth out

youR DRivE homE

Driveways

| Parking Lots | Sport Courts | Private Roads

BEFoRE

We make it easy. Free detailed, written quotes, Better Business Bureau A+ rating, references provided with driving directions. Call 518.479.1400 or request a FREE estimate appointment at broweasphalt.com

a+

We aCCePt

RatiNG

Alb a n y

|

S arat oga

|

C hat ham

Keeping you healthy, meeting your needs Thank you to the readers of Capital Region Living for naming CDPHP® the area’s top health plan. Best Health Care/HMO #1 www.cdphp.com/difference

Capital District Physicians’ Health Plan, Inc. |  CDPHP Universal Benefits,® Inc. | Capital District Physicians’ Healthcare Network, Inc.

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AFTER


We Don’t Care How You Stack Up The size of your wallet will never drive the quality of your service. We give you outstanding personal attention to ensure your day to day needs are a priority.

berkshirebank.com • 800.773.5601 Banking products are provided by Berkshire Bank: Member FDIC. Berkshire Bank is a Massachusetts chartered bank. Rev. 2/20


H WINNERS’ CIRCLE H ima g e b y c h r i s sa w i c k i

Thank you fo r v oting for us!

voted best wedding venue 2 3 3 9 N Y - 4 3 , Av e r i l l P a r k , N Y 1 2 0 1 8 518.674.3132 o lddaley.co m

John Boyd Thacher State Park and Thompson’s Lake State Park would like to say thanks for voting us #1 for Best Park, Best Trail, Best Picnic Spot! They look forward to a fantastic 2020 season of giving you more of the “best”!

518.872.1237 • thacherparkcenter.org 30 | C A P I T A L R E G I O N L I V I N G | M A R C H 2 0 2 0


To us, these are more than just buzzwords, and “Honest” is more than just our name. We believe in doing right by our community, locally and globally, and we’re lucky to have a community here in the Capital Region that supports us back.

Thank you for voting us this year’s Best Community Co-op and Best Health Food Store! A BE

MEMBER TO SH OP

!

OPEN TO ALL!

DON’T HAV YOU ET O

www.HonestWeight.coop


H WINNERS’ CIRCLE H

KNOWN FOR OUR EXPERTISE. CHOSEN FOR OUR CARE.

! u o Y k n a h T

Learn more about the hospital voted best in the region at amc.edu.

PITAL VOTED THE CA ST DISTRICT’S BE ORE! FURNITURE ST ALBANY • SCHENECTADY

OLDBRICKFURNITURE.COM CHECK OUT OUR REVIEWS...

Albany Med is home to more than 500 physicians, like heart surgeon Dr. Adanna Akujuo, who provide exceptional care and a full range of advanced surgical procedures.

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The Shandaken Inn

Built in the late 1920s as the clubhouse for the popular Rip Van Winkle Golf Course, the Shandaken Inn has been, in some capacity, welcoming guests to the northern Catskills for nearly a century. Today, after the property underwent an extensive renovation, reimagination and modernization at the end of 2019, the inn’s new owners and talented innkeepers have found a way to seamlessly weave modern amenities with rustic, country hospitality. Bordered by the Esopus and Catskill Mountain range, the inn’s 12 acres of picturesque grounds could’ve easily served as a muse for any of the famed Hudson River School painters. The Esopus is renowned for its world-class fly fishing, but if lures and baits aren’t your thing, it’s equally relaxing just sitting on the banks of the creek and letting your mind wander. The Shandaken Inn, which sits at 1 Golf Course Road in Shandaken, NY, features 15 wonderfully furnished guest rooms that pay homage to the storied past of the Catskill Mountain region. Vintage photos of the once-great resorts and camps line its walls; books on the topic are ideally situated for you to enjoy; Frette linens and bathrobes beckon you to a great night’s sleep; and 17 onpremise fireplaces set a cozy, romantic scene. The inn’s lounge is picture-perfect and is right next to the quaint lobby bar, from which you can grab a glass of wine or pint of locally brewed beer. In the morning, a full breakfast of your choice, including homemade pastries and cakes and pipinghot local coffee, is wonderfully prepared and served. Firepits, a large swimming pool and tennis courts are also available on the acreage. Additionally, the inn has a state-of-the-art fitness center, complete with Peloton bikes, just feet from your guest room. Escaping to the spectacular setting of the Catskills is easy— and would be a shame to miss out on, given how close we are to it. If you can dream it—eating in excellent restaurants, shopping, art/antique hunting, skiing and hiking—it’s available to you in the Catskills. Get there fast before the crowds come back!

Back To The Future In The Catskill Mountains CAPITAL REGION LIVING relives the region’s heyday in quaint Shandaken, NY.

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THE SHANDAKEN INN

ew vacation destinations in America rivaled the Catskills at the height of the 1950s and 1960s. Families, escaping the heat and drudgery of the surrounding towns and cities, found sanctuary in the mountain bungalow-style family camps. At the same time, over-the-top, all-inclusive resorts such as the Concord Resort Hotel and Grossinger’s Catskill Resort Hotel peppered the landscape. Families arrived with cars packed full of everything they’d need for an extended mountain reprieve. As guests to the Catskills’ camp scene became more affluent, the elegant resorts also rose to prominence. One of the better movies to highlight that era was 1987’s Dirty Dancing, starring Jennifer Grey and the late Patrick Swayze, which takes place at the fictional Catskills-based Kellerman’s Resort in 1963. Although the resort was a figment of the screenwriter’s imagination, in the famous “last dance of the season” scene, we get a little taste of real-life foreshadowing, when we hear resort proprietor Mr. Kellerman lamenting to his band leader that “trips to Europe [are] what the kids want.” Sadly, the majority of the family camp properties soon closed, followed by the resorts a short decade later. But lately, we’re beginning to see a Catskills renaissance. Artists have always been attracted to the banks of the Esopus Creek—especially Woodstock, NY—and the farm-to-market scene is beckoning culinary giants to the bounty of the area. Agricultural products of all kinds, including heirloom vegetables; locally produced beers, wines and spirits; artisanal cheeses; meat from sustainably raised livestock; and fish caught in the bucolic waterways have proven an irresistible draw to progressive chefs looking for the next “it” place. This trend could propel the Catskills to the popularity of (or even rival) the Berkshires. I recently found the region’s revival in full swing in Shandaken, NY.

VEL

» BY V IKK I

, T H E G R ATEF UL T RA

F

M

N ORA


The inn’s new owners and talented innkeepers have found a way to seamlessly weave modern amenities with rustic, country hospitality.

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PETS Advertising Section

The Animal Hospital

2 Rocking Horse Lane, Slingerlands 518.456.0852; theanimalhospital.com The staff at The Animal Hospital have dedicated their lives and this practice to their patients. The serene veterinary office is warm and inviting for you and your companion. By choice, it has remained a small hospital, allowing all of the staff to know you and your pet, giving whatever time is necessary to meet your needs. Every patient benefits from the staff’s commitment to being at the forefront in veterinary medicine. The Animal Hospital’s philosophy is to treat each patient as it would its own family members.

Pet Spas & Suites

1 Cerone Commercial Drive, Albany 518.783.5506; petspasandsuites.com Pet Spas & Suites has been proudly serving the Capital Region for 30 years. Its commitment to providing quality pet care and passion for animals drives the dedicated team to assess each pet’s needs and provide him or her with the best experience possible during his or her visit. Pet Spa & Suites sends out a special thank you to their loyal customers for entrusting its furry family members with Grooming, Daycare and Boarding needs since 1990!

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Voted Best Pet Spa Sand Creek Animal Hospital

130 Wolf Road, Albany 518.446.9171; sandcreekanimalhospital.com Sand Creek Animal Hospital is a full service companion animal hospital with a commitment to providing quality veterinary care throughout the life of your pet. Its services and facilities are designed to assist in routine preventive care for young, healthy pets; early detection and treatment of disease as your pet ages; and complete medical and surgical care as necessary during his or her lifetime.  Sand Creek is an AAFP cat friendly practice.

While in our care you can trust that your pet will receive individual attention in a loving and patient manner. We strive for excellence, upholding high standards, in every aspect of our business.

Pet Styles

1886 New Scotland Road, Slingerlands 518.439.3670; petstyles.biz Pet Styles offers a variety of services to keep your beloved pet stylish and healthy, including professional grooming and indoor/outdoor doggie daycare. Plus, you can shop its curated boutique of special items your pooch deserves! While in its care, you can trust that your pet will receive individual attention in a loving and patient manner. Pet Styles strives for excellence, upholding high standards in every aspect of its business.

Owned & Operated by National Certified Master Groomer Sheila Kelle

1886 New Scotland Road • Slingerlands 518.439.3670 • petstyles.biz

Colonie Animal Hospital

1946 Central Avenue, Colonie 518.456.1613; colonieanimalhospital.com Operating since the 1940s, Colonie Animal Hospital’s AAHA accredited team of doctors, with more than 80 years of combined experience, serves the needs of pets and owners in the Capital Region with pride and personal attention. It offers high quality compassionate care for dogs, cats and small pets such as rabbits, ferrets, rodents and birds. Colonie Animal Hospital’s desire is to offer the best in medical and surgical care, referral services and boarding to the community. It’s conveniently located on Central Avenue in Colonie, near Route 155, allowing easy access from Schenectady, Albany and beyond.

We are a full service companion animal hospital. It is our commitment to provide quality veterinary care throughout the life of your pet. Our services and facilities are designed to assist in routine preventive care for young, healthy pets; early detection and treatment of disease as your pet ages; and complete medical and surgical care as necessary during his or her lifetime. We are an AAFP cat friendly practice.

130 Wolf Road • Albany • 518.446.9171 sandcreekanimalhospital.com M A R C H 2 0 2 0 | C R L M A G . C O M | 41


Events Calendar » The show must go on! «

ALBANY COUNTY MARCH 7

BY SIMONE TEAGUE AND TRACY MOMROW

THE BERKSHIRES MARCH 7-28

COLUMBIA COUNTY MARCH 12

Hannaford Kidz Expo

Saturday Morning Cartoons

Earth People Opening Reception

THE EMPIRE STATE PLAZA

THE BERKSHIRE MUSEUM

HUDSON HALL

The 15th annual Kidz Expo is taking over the Empire State Plaza in Albany. The Expo includes everything from theater performances and bounce rides to arts and crafts and mini golf. In all, the Expo will feature more than 100 booths. For more info, visit empirestateplaza.ny.gov.

Every Saturday morning in March, the Berkshire Museum is playing Warner Brothers’ classic cartoons for the whole family to enjoy. For more info, visit berkshiremuesum.org.

Hudson Hall presents CATA COARC A.R.T.’s Earth People, an exhibit of paintings by artists with disabilities, in partnership with Community Access to the Arts (CATA) and COARC. The reception is free to the public, and the exhibit will remain on display until April 5. For more info, visit hudsonhall.org.

MARCH 14

The Mac-n-Cheese Bowl SIENA COLLEGE Siena College is hosting its 11th Annual Mac-n-Cheese Bowl, in which 30 local restaurants will serve up their best mac at tasting stations with the hopes of earning the top honors. The event benefits the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York. For more info, visit regionalfoodbank.net.

MARCH 8

Bolshoi Ballet: Giselle THE CLARK INSTITUTE The Clark Institute is presents a live-recorded performance of worldrenowned choreographer Alexei Ratmansky’s rendition of one of the oldest and greatest works of classical dance, Giselle. For more info, visit clarkart.edu. Junior Untitled 2019, from CATA COARC A.R.T.’s Earth People exhibit.

MARCH 15

Farm Film Festival THE CRANDELL THEATRE The 12th annual Farm Film Festival at the Crandell Theatre features short films created by both amateur and professional filmmakers, focusing on farms and farming issues, particularly those that are regionally relevant. For more info, visit chathamkeepfarming.org.

FULTON COUNTY MARCH 7-13

1st Annual Fulton County Restaurant Week VARIOUS LOCATIONS Diners will enjoy special prix fixe menus at restaurants such as 308 Prime, Hotel Broadalbin, Union Hall Inn, Fritz’s Pizza, Vintage Cafe, Partner’s Pub and Lanzi’s on Lake, among others. For more info, visit 44lakes.com. MARCH 22

Fulton-Montgomery County Home Show And Craft Fair BROADALBIN-PERTH HIGH SCHOOL The Fulton County Home Show and Craft Fair will feature how-to workshops on tile installation, laminate flooring, pellet and chimney stove cleanings, sheetrock

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Events Calendar

FREE FAMILY FUN

CONTINUED

at Blenheim-Gilboa Visitors Center & Lansing Manor

patching, and overhead door installation. Lowes is providing a woodworking class for kids, and the Fulton County Public Health Department will provide free coloring and comic books. For more info, visit byckids.com.

MAR/APR EVENTS

MONTGOMERY COUNTY MARCH 7

Miniature Golf & Family Fun Day AMSTERDAM HIGH SCHOOL You don’t need any pro lessons for this one. Enjoy this über-fun miniature golf outing that the whole family can take part in. For more info, visit visitmontgomerycountyny.com. MARCH 7

Antique Show At The Arkell

• Wacky & Alternative

Home Show . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3/14

• Hoppy Easter Party . . . . . . . . . . . . .4/5 • Earth Rocks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4/18 Less Than an Hour From Albany

Blenheim-Gilboa Power Project Visitors Center 1378 State Route 30 North Blenheim NY 12131

1-800-724-0309 • nypa.gov/BGVisitorsCenter FREE ADMISSION & PARKING

THE ARKELL MUSEUM The 15th annual Antique Show at the Arkell Museum will feature 25 dealers with quality wares, including furniture, quilts, books, tools, postcards, paintings, toys, china and jewelry. An appraisal booth will also be available—and organizers will be serving a light lunch. For more info, visit arkellmuseum.org.

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MARCH 14

Amsterdam’s 3rd Annual St. Paddy’s Day Pub Fest VARIOUS LOCATIONS This citywide event features music, activities, food and drink specials and giveaways. (Be sure to wear green!) Don’t have a DD? No problem. There will be a free shuttle service available throughout the festivities. For more info, visit amsterdamny.gov.

OTSEGO COUNTY MARCH 3

The Harlem Globetrotters HARTWICK COLLEGE Talk about a slam dunk! The Harlem Globetrotters have a brand-new national tour, complete with all of their best high-flying dunks and hilarious

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Events Calendar CONTINUED

basketball stunts. They’ll even attempt a record-breaking feat on the night of their appearance. For more info, visit harlemglobetrotters.com. MARCH 14

Shamrock Swing Mother Son Dance THE FOOTHILLS PERFORMING ARTS CENTER The 5th annual Shamrock Swing Mother Son Dance—which sold out last year— will once again be held at the Foothills Performing Arts Center. Besides cutting a rug, the event features dinner, dancing, raffles and prizes. For more info, visit destinationoneonta.com. MARCH 20-23

Snommegang Invitational Beer Festival MULLER PLAZA IN ONEONTA Visitors can sample more than 100 beers at this year’s Snommegang Invitational Beer Festival, which is being held, rain or shine, at Oneonta’s Muller Plaza. (It’s hosted by Cooperstown’s Brewery Ommegang, if you were wondering about its name.) For more info, visit ommegang.com.

SARATOGA COUNTY MARCH 7

The Saratoga Performing Arts Center’s (SPAC’s) Winter Ball 2020: The Future Is Now! This year’s Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC) Junior Committee Winter

Sample more than 100 beers at this year’s Snommegang, March 20-23.

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Robert Cray performs at Troy Savings Bank Music Hall on March 10.

Ball will teleport you to a futuristic utopia. The event will feature live music by Grand Central Station, catering by Mazzone Hospitality, a futuristic photo booth, an open bar with themed cocktails, raffle prizes and more. For more info, visit spac.org.

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MARCH 17

St. Patrick’s Day Festivities UNIFIED BEERWORKS IN MALTA Malta’s Unified Beerworks invites you to join in on the fun at its St. Patrick’s Day party, with live music from bluegrass band The North & South Dakotas, food by Old Thyme BBQ and of course, lots and lots of beer. For more info, visit unified-beerworks.com.

RENSSELAER COUNTY MARCH 10

Robert Cray Band

JEFF KATZ

THE TROY SAVINGS BANK MUSIC HALL Five-time Grammy-winning bluesman Robert Cray brings his expert guitar chops and unmistakable vocals to Troy Music Hall. For more info, visit troymusichall.org.

Bella Napoli thanks you for voting them #1!

When you walk into Bella Napoli Bakery, you smell the intoxicating aroma of fresh baked pastries, breads and cookies. At lunchtime, add in the fresh aroma of homemade soups and sandwiches that fill the room. A full-service bakery, sandwich shop and coffee café, the wide selection brings you in...while the delicious tastes are what will bring you back. Since 1957

Classic Italian Pastries & Breads Latham • 518-783-0196 Troy • 518-274-8277 www.bellanapolibakery.com M A R C H 2 0 2 0 | C R L M A G . C O M | 45


Events Calendar SCHENECTADY COUNTY MARCH 6

Night Ranger RIVERS CASINO & RESORT Hair metal, anyone? The multiplatinumselling band Night Ranger (see: “Sister Christian”) is coming to the Rivers Casino & Resort in Schenectady. For more info, visit riverscasinoandresort.com.

MARCH 21-22

Antiques In Schoharie SCHOHARIE CENTRAL SCHOOL Schoharie Central School will be a literal treasure trove March 21-22, with 100 antiques dealers participating in this massive show, which is a major fundraiser for the Schoharie Colonial Heritage Association’s Railroad Museum. For more info, visit schany.org. MARCH 28-29

SCHOHARIE COUNTY MARCH 9

Rambles In Schoharie County THE SHARON SPRINGS FREE PUBLIC LIBRARY Catch Author Peter Lindemann presenting his book Rambles in Schoharie County, at The Sharon Springs Free Public Library Community Room. The event is being hosted by the Sharon Springs Society Program. For more info, visit shslib.blogspot.com.

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Cobleskill Region Home & Garden Show

The Great Upstate Boat Show (pictured) features seminars focused on boat maintenance and safety.

WARREN COUNTY MARCH 27-29

COBLESKILL RICHMONDVILLE HIGH SCHOOL

The Great Upstate Boat Show

The Cobleskill Region Home & Garden Show, hosted by the Schoharie County Chamber of Commerce, will feature more than 50 vendors, as well as giveaways, food trucks and tons of family fun from 11am-4pm on both Saturday and Sunday. Tickets are $5 for adults and free for children. For more info, visit schohariechamber.com.

The Great Upstate Boat Show in Queensbury offers customers three days to save, if they’re thinking about buying a boat or trading up to a new model. The show also features three informative seminars focused on boat maintenance and safety, as well as water sports training. For more info, visit thegreatupstateboatshow.com.

ADIRONDACK SPORTS COMPLEX


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6. One entry on a 5-Down

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7. Mardi Gras HQ

33. One of the Manning brothers

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29. “___ miss me?” 31. 2016 Ryan Gosling film ___ Land

37. Types of 21-Down 38. Courage 39. One population whose home is the Middle East 41. DeGeneres of Finding Dory 43. Toy gun brand 44. Smell 45. “___ and shine!” 46. Fermented honey drink 50. Inverse of mult. 51. Cunning Answers on crlmag.com. Search: crossword

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before you go...

FINNEGAN’S GOAT BY JOHN GRAY

I

t was the occasion of James Patrick Ryan’s 16th birthday party, and his immediate family had all stopped by to celebrate and help him blow out the candles. The presents from his relatives, per his request, were all gift cards to the places he liked to shop. Every birthday card he received had a gift card stuffed inside, and then James’ grandfather handed him a card. When he tore into the envelope and opened the Hallmark card inside it, there was nothing there, save for six words written on the card: “A walk and wisdom, love Grandpa.” After the dishes were cleared away and the crowd left, James went out into the backyard to find his grandfather, with an inquisitive look on his face, holding the card in his hand. “I thought I might give you something more valuable than a sweatshirt from Old Navy this year,” his grandfather began. “Let’s walk and I’ll tell you a story that may help you someday.” The two of them slipped away down the path by the river, and the old man told James the story of Finnegan’s goat.

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t seemed as though there had once been a town just like the one James lived in, with a boy there just like James—small for his age and prone to being picked on by the other children. His name was Finnegan. The year was 1843, and there were farms as far as the eye could see. One day Finnegan’s mother gave him 20 silver dollars with the instructions to go into town and buy a goat. Finnegan did as he was told, but

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along the way, he ran into the Hollister boys: Jimmy, Joey and Jamie. Three brothers separated by just a year in age and the worst bullies in the county. They stopped Finnegan and asked him where he was going, and he told them about his plans to buy the goat. The oldest Hollister winked at his younger brothers and told Finnegan they had a prized goat to sell him, and Finnegan should wait right there. When he returned a few moments later, he had a poster in his hand with the picture of a beautiful goat on it. He said, “The goat is out in the field right now, but this is what he looks like. You give me the $20 and you can pick him up in the morning.” Finnegan hesitated for a moment—but concluded that the goat was perfect and handed the Hollister boys the silver dollars and went home with the picture of the goat to show his mother.

“I thought I might give you something more valuable than a sweatshirt from Old Navy this year. Let’s walk and I’ll tell you a story that may help you someday.” The next morning when Finnegan returned, Jamie Hollister told him that the goat had died the previous night, and he’d already been buried. And unfortunately, they’d spent the money he’d given them on grain, so it looked as though Finnegan was out of luck. Throughout the story, the three brothers couldn’t contain their laughter, and Finnegan quickly realized he’d been duped. But rather than throw a punch and find himself fighting three against one, he left, going home to think. The next day, Finnegan went into town with the photo

of the goat he thought he was buying that turned out never to have actually existed. He stopped everyone he met and told them he was raffling off the goat, and it was valued at $50. Raffle tickets were just a buck, so someone could win that beautiful goat for only a dollar. Finnegan told everyone he’d draw the winning name on Saturday in the town square at noon. The Hollister boys heard about the raffle and showed up for the drawing to expose Finnegan’s scheme. When they arrived at the town square at noon, they saw Finnegan holding a hat full of raffle tickets, and standing next to, not one, but two lovely goats. Finnegan had a child reach into the hat full of tickets and pick a name and announced that Sarah Foster had won. As Sarah approached, Finnegan addressed the crowd: “I have a confession to make: The goat in this photo died. But you needn’t worry; I sold 500 raffle tickets, so I went and purchased two new goats, one for Sarah and one for me. They both cost $50 each, so I’m keeping $100 for my trouble and donating the remaining $300 to the church.” The townspeople applauded. Finnegan was now a hero. Shortly after the applause died down, the three Hollister boys stormed up to Finnegan and said, “You cheat; that goat in the photo never existed.” Finnegan smiled and replied, “So you’re admitting you lied to me and stole my money?” The youngest Hollister said, “You bet we did, ’cause you’re stupid.” Just then, Finnegan looked behind the Hollister brothers and said, “Did you hear that sheriff?” Sheriff Satchel Walton and his deputy grabbed the three boys by the shoulders and said, “You bet I did. Boys you’re under arrest for fraud.” When James’ grandfather was done with the story, he tossed a stone out into the river and said, “So what can we learn from Finnegan’s goat?” The teenager smiled and said, “Don’t buy something unless you see it first. Don’t fight with your fists when you can win using your brain.” He paused, and his grandfather added, “And don’t forget to always give back.” As they made their way back to the house, James thought, the old man’s right; that “walk and wisdom” is way better than a sweatshirt.


Thank You for voting Keeler Motor Car Company Capital Region Living Magazine’s

“Best Car Dealer” 4 Years In A Row!

1111 Troy Schenectady Road, Route 7, Latham, NY 12110 www.Keeler.com • (518) 785-4197


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